Hawke leaned back into his chair at the tavern, and swirled his ale in his glass. Out of his peripheral vision, he carefully studied the group of humans gathered around a table to his left. They had come in separately, slowly, but had attempted to innocuously form at a single table. A waitress visited infrequently, but had managed to serve each several servings of their preferred drink. Each drink, of course, Hawke had supervised.
Knowing he was in no hurry, Hawke decided to take inventory of the rest of the inn. He found several small groups of patrons, but his attention landed on a half elf seated alone. The half elf seemed larger than normal, and judging by his appearance, he was a laborer. His face appeared to be rough, as if his nose had been broken several times. The condition of his hands confirmed Hawke’s suspicion of his profession, and Hawke noticed that his knuckles appeared to have been recently split. A slight discoloration around the eye was the final clue that let Hawke know that he had found his distraction.
As he waited for the laborer to finish his drink, Hawke turned his attention back to the small group of men, who appeared to be growing increasingly rowdy. Specifically, he focused in on the missive attached to one of the human’s waist. It was dull and unassuming, looking like nothing more than a change-purse. Hawke, however, was aware of it’s contents. Taking that package was one more brick taken out of the foundation of the families that had abandoned his. Step by step…
Hawke finished his drink, and ordered another. He noticed that the half elf had done the same, so we patiently waited for the server to turn her back. As she did, Hawke quickly took in his surroundings to make sure no one was observing him. He closed his eyes to concentrate. A mirror image filled the space where he had been formerly sitting at the bar, while he slid down to sneak around the bar. Slowly and silently, he removed a small vial from within his robe, and placed a large amount into the half-elf’s drink. It was the same substance he had been placing in the drinks of the group of humans all night. Just as quietly, he slipped back to his seat to reoccupy his seat. Now, he just needed to wait.
As the half elf finished the last of his ale, Hawke observed that he was now even more agitated than he had appeared before. Placing enough coin, along with a generous tip on the bar, Hawke stood to greet his new target. As he approached the half-elf, he withdrew a simple dagger from beneath his robe, but kept it concealed within his sleeve.
“Hail, good friend. Hawke noticed that you do not have any company this fine evening! Perhaps Hawke may purchase you some ale to keep you warm on your walk home this evening?”
“What of it?” came the reply. “Maybe I am planning to stay here all night.”
“Perfect!” Hawke declared. “Then Hawke will buy you several!”
“I don’t need your charity,” the half-elf muttered. “Leave me in peace.”
“Please, forgive the simpleminded Hawke. He was only trying to lift your spirits after he overhead what those dreadful men had been saying about you all evening. Even for a lowly creature such as yourself, one should be not be subject to such language.”
“What? What did they say? Those men?” The half-elf spun in his chair to stare at the group. As his back was turned, Hawke removed the dagger and placed it on the table in front of the half-elf. The rage potion was working, just as he had intended.
“Those men right there,” Hawke nodded. “Not fit to do anything other than dig ditches for men to… pardon Hawke’s mouth, to relieve themselves in. No place in an establishment as fine as this one.” The half-elf turned back, and noticed the knife. He clutched it, as he started over to the table of humans.
“Human scum. Every where I go.”
It worked just as Hawke had intended. By now, the rage potion he had placed into the humans drinks would be having the same effect. All he needed to do was wait, and retrieve the missive.
Without saying a word, the half-elf plunged the dagger into the back of the closest human, removed it and flung it toward the face of another. Hawke removed himself to hide in the shadows as the bedlam commenced. As he suspected, this was not the half-elf’s first run-in with humans. The fight raged on, as Hawke sneaked past it, carefully and quietly removing the missive for the waist of the first human the half-elf had incapacitated. He concealed the package under his robe, and crept toward the door.
Hawke exited the tavern quickly, as the fight drew to a close. The half-elf lay in a heap on the wooden floor, but Hawke could not determine whether he was alive or dead. No matter, he thought to himself. His plan worked, and there were a few less Bruelden thugs in the world.
“Let’s see you worm your way out of this one,” Hawke muttered.
Cleric of Leira, goddess of illusion (CN Trickery)