Blank is blamed for the murder of the lovely Ruby. Now he shall the true murderer and exact his revenge. One-Shot
'Tis been nearly five years that I have been on my own, hiding from those I had once called my family and friends. I had been accused of murder, one that even I, a thief, would never commit--the murder of a dear friend of mine, a family member that I considered as sister. Her throat had been cut clean, her body thrown into the closet of the ship I had called home. I knew not who had committed such a crime, but I had been framed--I was the only one that was known to be able to make such a clean cut.
But, my blade was and still is clean, free of any blood of humans. The only blood that covers my sword is that of monsters.
"Fetch me a spot of ale," I said quietly, hood draped over my face and black mask moving as I spoke. I made sure to deepen my voice and to change my accent to one of olde english. "Aye," the bartender spoke, grabbing a glass from under the counter and walking towards the back to get my ale.
"I doubt that we would be in Treno, boss. No thief is that stupid to try and stay in this city," a familiar voice said. I reached up, pulled my hood down further, and listened quietly.
"Shaddup, fool! This is his home town! 'Course he'd be here!"
Damnation, I had been found.
A man my age walked over and took a seat directly beside me. He was buff, with two blue line tattoos trailing down each arm. A blue bandana was wrapped around him head, while he wore blue leather clothing.
"Bartender, I would like to buy my friends and I some beer," Marcus said, placing gil on the counter. The bartender, just down rounding the corner with several bottles of ale, nodding. He handed me mine, and I placed the gil on the counter. I sipped at my ale, eyes glazing over. I tried not to think of my past.
"What's your name, friend?" Marcus asked, looking at me.
Ah, but you already know me, yet you cannot see that.
"My name? Ah, 'tis Josh," I answered.
"Have you heard of anyone by the name of Blank?" Marcus yet again asked.
I am here, beside you.
"I know not that name, friend," I muttered.
Baku and Cinna walked over, the latter of the two sitting on the other side of me, while Baku sat beside Marcus, to my left.
"Thanks for buyin' the beer!" Baku said, slapping Marcus on the back and grabbing the glass of beer infront of him.
"Yeah, seriously," Cinna said, grabbing his own as it was set down.
Prithee, do not recognize me.
"'Tis nice to have company," I said, sipping at my ale.
"This is Josh," Marcus said, patting my shoulder. "Quite a friendly man, if I do say so myself.
"Looks like a thief to me!" Baku joked.
"...You're right," Marcus said, looking at me. "Have you stolen before?"
"...Few times, 'tis only food," I muttered quietly. Finishing off my ale, I stood up and proceeded with leaving--
--when I felt a tug at my hood. It flew off, and I stiffened as Cinna and Baku jumped to their feet, while Marcus sat holding my cloak in his hands.
"Blank! You devil!" Baku exclaimed, dashing towards me.
"Ah, thou shalln't touch!" I said, jumping up and landing on one of the tables. I jumped again, grabbing hold of the railing on the second floor. "'Twas enjoyable to see you again, friends, but I must be off!" With a bow, I jumped back down as Cinna and Marcus came running towards me on the second floor, and I dashed out of the bar and onto the roof.
"Damn," I muttered, landing on my boat in the canals of Treno. "How could Marcus have known it was me? ...Surely he of all people would know that I wouldn't commit such a crime! Ruby and I were close friends--never would I murder her! Damn you all...Damn this world, and all who live on it! I will find the real criminal...And when I do, I will cut his neck, like what was done to Ruby!"
"Yeah, I saw him near here...," I heard a voice. ...Trenton, you traitor! I quietly and quickly slipped into the water and hid in the shadows, pushing my boat towards the dock. Marcus came walking down, sword in hand.
"Blank, come out of hiding. We know that it was you, so why hide?"
"'Tis foolishness! One who is right would not reveal themselves, only to have their life taken from them by a blade of unjustice!" I shouted.
"'Tis foolishness for you, one of justice and right, who has always tried to contribute to the good of thy land, to become a hunter of the righteous!"
"Blank, look at what you've become," Marcus said sadly. I drifted closer quietly, while staying in the shadow, eyes narrowed. "A murderer, an unjust thief, and a coward..."
"'Tis not the case, my old friend. The truth be that I am innocent, condemned to such a life by those who were once those I loved," I shouted. "Prithee, listen to my words carefully! Do as thou wilt, but I shalln't let myself be looked upon as someone of no code!"
Jumping out of the water, I hooklined Marcus and shoved him to the ground, grabbing his sword as I dashed away.
"May thee learn the truth in the future!"
I must hide--but where? Where can I go to live out the remainder of my life if the true culprit isn't found? No where near Lindblum, Treno, and certainly not Alexandria.
I was running towards the restored Burmecia, hiding in the shadows of the mountains. I slipped in through the gate and hid in the alleyways as I made way towards a house, one I had visited countless times. Mayhap she would listen to me.
I knocked on the door and stood still beside it.
"...Who goes there?" A voice asked, repeating my own words that I had said nearly a decade ago.
"'Tis I, Freya, Blank," I said quietly.
The door opened, and Freya swiftly grabbed my arm, pulling me inside before a Burmecian walking past could see me.
"You are a fool! What are you doing here? You could very well get me in trouble, for hosting a supposed criminal!" She hissed.
"So, you already know?"
"Yes, but I know that you wouldn't kill Ruby," Freya answered. "Don't worry...I must inform you that a man was seen slipping into the Theater Ship the day of Ruby's death. No one knows who it was, but they say he wore a red bandana..."
Red bandana? There was only one man I knew that wore something to the likes, and that was Alleyway Jack--or, as others knew him, Gilgamesh.
"Pray tell, any other rumors?" I asked.
"Yes...He was accompanied, and someone heard the woman he was with call him 'Trenton'."
It couldn't be...
"That fiend! I shall rip him limb from limb and shall slit his throat for daring to lie to me!"
"You know him?"
"Aye, and when I see him again, I will toss his lifeless body into the River Styx itself! I shalln't let him get away with this!"
"You will need a better disguise. I heard from Marcus that you were wearing a cloak and mask. Won't do much for you, though," Freya said. She turned around and marched off as I stood there, waiting. She returned, handing me Burmecian clothing. "Wear this, and keep the collar over your mouth. Wear this," she said, handing me a helmet that looked like a cross between Burmecian hats and Alexandrian armor, "to hide your face. Continue to speak in olde english, but lower your voice more."
"...As thou wish," I said. I headed to the bathroom, quickly changed, and came out.
"Ah, perfect," Freya said. "Now, come with me. We shall take the Gold Chocobo to Treno immediately.
Freya and I walked into Treno, side by side. I looked a Burmecian, and I played the part, walking similar to Freya best I could.
"Where is he?" She asked me in a whisper.
"He lives in the slums," I whispered back, switching to regular english for a moment, "near the canals."
We made our way through Treno, nobles, peasants, and others surprised by us two, both of us seemingly Burmecians.
Ah, what fools to not know that I was a human.
We came upon Trenton's house quickly. Freya knocked as I took up my position by the window--I would sneak it while she was distracting him and grab him. No one was around, so no one would see us.
"You are Trenton, correct?" I heard her ask.
"Yes. Why is it that you are here?"
"I wish to ask you a few questions, concerning the death of Ruby of Tantalus," Freya said. I slipped into through the window and walked up behind Trenton, and just as he was turning around to look at me, I wrapped my hand around his mouth and my free arm around his throat, dragging him backwards.
"Blank, someone is coming!"
"Who is it?" I asked in a whisper.
"Marcus approaches!" She answered, standing by the door. "Be quick and finish this!"
I turned to Trenton, whose arms and legs were tied up.
"Help--!" He shouted, but I quickly put my hand over his mouth. "'Tis time for my vengeance on you, traitor. What are thou last words?" I asked. He shook his head. "What," I repeated, leaning in close, "are thou last words?"
I removed my hand.
"I killed Ruby! Yeah, that's right, I did it! But they'll never know that! You kill me, and they'll kill you! You leave me alive, and I'll lie to them!" Trenton shouted.
"Fool," I said. "Ruby's scent still lies heavily on thy blade."
Suddenly Freya was beside me, holding her spear tightly. "Blank!" Marcus shouted, holding a new sword. I held his old sword in my hand. "What are you doing? Killing another innocent person?" He asked.
"Nay, brother! I know who truly murdered Ruby--and 'tis be this traitor!"
"I-I swear, I didn't kill her!" Trenton yelled. I pressed the sword in my hand to his throat. "Stop with thy pitiful lies!" I yelled. "The fault is with thee!"
"...Fine, I'll say it! I killed her! But you know what--none of you will live to see tomorrow! Maria!"
A woman jumped down and slashed at me, her blade slipping in through a crack in the armor I wore and straight into my side. I coughed up blood, shaking as she pulled the blade from my body.
"Brother!" Marcus shouted.
"Blank! You two shall pay! Marcus, with me!" Freya commanded.
I collapsed onto the floor, watching as the that wretch Maria freed Trenton. Swords and a spear clashed, and I gripped my own.
"For my sister and friend, thou shall fall!" I shouted, pushing myself to my feet. I dashed forward, dodging as Trenton tried to slash at me. My blade slipped into his chest, striking his heart, and he fell limp. I pulled my blade out just as Maria fell to the ground.
My eyes fluttered shut as exhaustion took over me.
"...got it bad."
"...time to save..."
I opened my eyes, albeit slowly, and glanced at the five...six...seven...? faces above me.
"Look at that! Sleepin' beauty is awake!"
"...Bo--No, I don't think...," I said, trailing off.
"...Ya dumbass! Welcome back to the band!" Baku said, slapping me on the back as I sat up--
--causing me to cough up blood.
"Oh. Sorry!" Baku said, before laughing.
"Hey, bro," Marcus said, looking away. "Sorry for not believing you."
"It's fine, really. I'm just glad I don't have to do that accent anymore...I was way to used to talking that way for five years," I said. We all laughed.
"...You know, I had a whole entire speech planned out for you," Marcus said, after the others walked out. "...'Thy own sword has betray'd you. What shall thou do now? I beseech thee--live by thy sword and lay down thine life! Canst thee admit to thy crimes? Dost thou wish for some loathsome reputation? Prithee...cometh!' I though it stupid after a while, though, especially when Trenton proclaimed his part in Ruby's death."
"Nice of you to want to speak in Ye Olde English to me," I joked. Marcus grinned. "You seemed stuck on it. Now, later, I'm buyin' you some beer. I gotta get going. See ya, bro," Marcus said, standing up and walking off.
Blank, 'bout time ya got off yer lazy ass and did somethin' right!
I looked up, blinking, before smirking. "...Aye, lass, 'twas done for you."