It seemed these last five years had given him purpose. As much as he didn’t like to admit it, he truly believed the Order had given him some purpose in life. Though he missed the sand and his home, this felt like where he was supposed to be. Being in the Order meant a lot over the last five years. One of them meant compromise. At least now he was not always being hunting. Instead he had met many allies, he was looking forward to seeing Daveon again.
A man he owed his life to after he pulled him from the fires that took away not only lives of his people, but trust of his people surely. A man he had great respect for, even if he chose to use vulgar language at times. There were others Shayzani had met as well that he respected, admired. Hoped to be like some, someday.
Maksa groaned from boredom. Their journey uneventful. To maybe perhaps her disappointment more than his. Many on the roads didn’t know how to react to him. Some stared at him with little conviction, others terror. He supposed he understood.
Even without ears the bandages scared them. They did not understand the purpose of the veil of modesty either and that made them see him as suspicious. He did not meet their suspicions with ill thought, instead he met them with understanding as he understood when he there was elven fear. To understand and to forgive were very different concepts though.
The road long. The heat barely bothered him, while others toil away in fields wiping sweat from their brows. The Asto far hotter in the dry season than this subtle coolness in the air. The wetter season though was troublesome, always had been. Maksa made the most of it through complaining. Though he eventually came to where he was meant to be Mezzar city.
He heard the stories and the things they said about this city. Though he did not chase stories without their merit. He tried not to enter cities often, even as an Order member they made him nervous unless he was with a group who could stand for his honor. Especially when his common could not always convey the complexities of language as those born to speak the common language could.
They stood at the gates, Maksa and him prepared to enter. Till two guards stared at him. He could only assume they were looking at him. Their helmets made it hard for him to track their eyes. Getting off of Maksa he bowed to them.
“Aaye,” he told them.
One of them huffed in his helmet.
“You’re not permitted to pass,” he said through his helm.
Ah this was something he should have expected. Honestly it was something that should have been expected from the others who summoned him here. He would try to navigate this misunderstanding though he feared for the worse circumstances.
“Amin no harm,” he tells them, “Amin here to work. With Order.”
The guard laughs.
“You work for the Order?” the second one questions with skepticism.
“Yes,” Shayzani tells them with another bow, they seem on edge when he walks to Maksa to take his sigal out.
“Lemme take a look at that,” the second one walks up and stares into the sigal of his bandaged hands.
Both helmed guards look at each other and turn to the other side facing their backs to him. This didn’t seem to be going as well as he had hoped. He simply waited, already understanding where this might go. It was a disappointment. He didn’t like to be late to his affairs. Neither did he like to be made to be some liar.
The guards finally turned back to him. The first one to talk on the right walked forward in order to clear the gap between their distance.
“It is clear to me this is a forgery,” the guard told him.
It wasn’t. He would not argue though. He only gave a humble bow.
“You’re hereby placed into custody for impersonating an Order member until someone can vouch for your identification, if they can,” the guard on the left said.
Shayzani gave them another bow.
“Understand,” he said to at least acknowledge their decision. He would respect it. It being their city. Living his life with the prejudice of others he knew not to fight it. Defensism only made you look like what you are already not to them. The truth would come out eventually if in fact his Order members came for him. He trusted they would because he would for them. He hoped his year of service meant something to whom he was to meet, or else the purpose he so felt on the way here may feel lost or misplaced of all things.
The guards merely huffed and sighed. His understanding also made him suspicious. Though he had faith in his Order. He also saw no need to argue with them, as he understood what he looked to them. Their reaction valid, because he may once have had the same opinion about himself.
He wished he had the reputation Hans had. Though that came out of admiration from the man who showed few admiration to others. At times Shay believed them to hate each other, though he hated few, but feared those who earned the reputation to be feared.
He stuck his hands out to allow them to place the shackles on his bandaged arms. One of the guards made a noise.
“Pretending to be on our side isn’t going to make us change our minds,” he told him.
“Arguing helps little,” Shayzani told them with a simple bow of his head.
Slinging on the irons, he felt little shame for this moment. It was bound to happen here and there, that he got use to the quick judgment.
The guard at least gave the courtesy of leading him by his shackles without dragging him. Now to walk the city. He wished he didn’t have to do so in shackles.
People were quick to assume things. They see a man pass the markets in prison and assume he done something wrong. They believe their observations without observing. Still quite the spot to be in where he needed to be wasn’t too far to where he ended up. In a tight narrow row of cells. They went from a large security checkpoint, through a gate and down some stairs in a dimly lit, tight narrow hallway. It smelled of mildew, mold, there was perhaps the faint smell of blood, and urine.
“In there,” told one of the guards from the security checkpoint.
Shoved into a cramped prison with the door closing fast behind him and the sound of a lock. They were sending an envoy to ask his Commander at the Order to confirm his identity. He didn’t like strange roundabout detours to getting where he needed to be, but he supposed this is what he would have to do for now.
It became clear to him he wasn’t alone. A human man sat in the corner, with hair missing atop his head, he had a few scabs, he was barefoot, in nothing, but rags for clothes. He gives him a toothy grin.
“In ‘ere for spreadin’ shit too?” he ask.
“Excuse?” Shayzani responded.
“Aye,” the man showed his hands which appeared dirty, and indeed there was the scent of feces coming from his corner of the cell, “Took sum horsey manure. Spread it all over a merchant’s cart. He be trying to cheat me I tell ya. But the guards wanna ‘ere nothin’ ‘bout it.”
Shayzani wasn’t sure what to respond with. He simply nodded in acknowledgment.
“Amin Common not good,” Shayzani told him.
“Aye, names Kraven, figure if wes goin’ be in ‘ere together we should know each other’s names, you elfy people won’t make it ‘round here,”
Shayzani once again nodded his head. How else is should he respond? There was ratherly due process in this world.
“Weird name innit, but I don’t knock ‘nother man’s name,” Kraven tells him, “So. Watcha in for?”
“Ooo one of thems stories. I like a good mystery,”
He hoped his commander would get here soon. He trusted she would. He trusted in her word. He wasn't sure how to navigate talking with this human.