Thursday, March 12, 2009

24 years later - Part III

Continued from Part II


(The Free City of Greyhawk)

 

The cheers and applause were deafening, the Grand Theater shuddered with the reverberations.

“Thank you! Goodnight!” Diana exclaimed to the packed -Standing room only-crowd.

Waving to the crowd and bowing one last time to the orchestra. She quickly made her way offstage.

 

“Three curtain calls! Three curtain calls! Can you believe it? And they’re still clapping!” her manager Jose’ exclaimed.

“You were golden baby, GOLDEN!”  He sputtered as he ran to keep up with Diana’s long strides.

Diana looked back at Jose’ and smiled. “Yeah we rocked it huh?”

The stout Dwarf stopped in his tracks “Rocked it??  Hey I like that. “Diana Rocks!” Did you just come up with that?”

Diana and José walk into her dressing room. Jose’ starts shooing well wishers and costume people out. As the last person leaves, he locks the door and turns to see Diana taking off her wig and shaking her hair loose.

“No, It’s just an old saying from where I come from.” She said.

Slipping out of her dress and standing before him, her tight nude body glistening in the lamplight she asks “Did you make the arrangements?”

“I did” he said nonchalantly staring at her dark golden skin. “You know kid, I wish you wouldn’t just get naked like that, I may be 120 years old but I still get urges y’know?”

“Sorry Jose’” Diana responded “I’m just in a hurry.”

“Yeah, I noticed.  But why?” he asked “You’re not leaving till the morning.”

“I have to meet some people tonight.” She said

“Some people?”

“Yes, some people.”

“Business people?” He asked.

“Yes, but not “our business” sort of business people.”  She leaned over and kissed the Dwarf on the forehead. “Don’t worry Jose’, you aren’t being replaced.”

“Who said anything about being worried” Jose’ exclaimed. “I’m just, concerned is all. This is a tough town babygirl.”

“And I can take care of myself. You of all people should know that.” Diana responded.

Diana dressed quickly, dark non-descript trousers and blouse.  Jose’ took note as she tucked a sheath holding a long sturdy stiletto into one of her boots.

“You want I should get a couple of the boys to go with you.” He said as he watched her buckle a leather waist belt that held the tubular scabbard for her “staff”.

“I told you already, I’ll be fine.” Clasping a charcoal grey cloak about her. “Now go out there and make up some excuse for me, so I can get out of here. I’m late already.”

Jose walked to the door. “Fine , fine. The carriage will be in front of your place one hour after dawn.” Jose took one last look at Diana, the face and body of a nineteen year old, but the will and determination of a woman twice her age.  “Be careful babygirl.”

“I’m the soul of caution.” She responded with a smile.

 

Twenty minutes later, several levels below the rainy streets of the Free City,  Diana was in a sparse, windowless room, standing in front of a large mahogany desk. Across from her sat a short balding man.  

“Two months leave. Hmm…You realize this is very short notice. We have several operations that this will no doubt disrupt.”

“I understand sir. But he was a very dear friend” Diana said.

“I was under the impression that he was just a low level informant from your time in Hardby.” The man said quizzically as he looked at her.

Diana knew that the man across from her had a complete file on Bobby, just as he had on everyone the agency had contact with.  He knew full well how close Bobby and the others had been to Diana.

“Sir” Diana said, as she tried her best to not come off as tense “I’m sure that you knew about the contents of the letter I received before I did. The agency owns half the courier services in the city and has agents placed in the rest.”

His silence confirmed Dianna’s statement. 

 “I honestly don’t see the problem. I’ve more than earned the time off.” She continued.

“The problem Major, is that you are a very valuable asset. And while Nyrond is our ally, having you there without adequate back up is a concern.” The man stated.

“I can take care of myself, sir.” Diana said.

“I know that, still, the agency has invested quite a bit in your training and your cover. Those potions that keep you so young don’t come cheaply.”

“I understand that sir.” Diana said.

He stared at Diana for several seconds before finally breaking the silence. “You have one month Major. At your first opportunity you will check in at our house in Nyrond.” The man lifted a quill pen and began writing.

“You’re dismissed Major.” He said without looking up.

To be continued...