The Following is an excerpt from Tiska’s Journal
Ivan is dead.
For real this time.
No men in masks pretending to be he.
No svvitches with Andre when I am inattentive
Only his vvithered, perforated, popped corpse.
The vvorld is cleansed of one more evil.
I still cannot believe is real.
Years I have hid away in fear.
Years vvatching shoulder, afraid of masks and daggers in night.
Years pretending not to exist.
Now. Safe on streets again. Can walk with head held high.
Well, save for scars on face.
The vvound remains open. Sleeping is difficult. Searching for cure.
This vvas all so sudden. Vveeks of endless torture and starvation. The gauntlet that marred my face. Zelkova’s arm. Mathias’s eye. Jane’s mind. Tiger’s Teeth. Who knows of Rel’s horror in this. Can only hope his passing was swift.
And then… an attack on the Assassins, a suicide mission to rescue us. I never vvould have believed i was worth such. The Man and Woman who released us, Bread and Cocoa. Never before have I seen such… Zeal. The duo broke us free and helped us escape the assassins cave. There vvere not alone. Zelkova has other team, they helped.
Apparently lizard-man made several tons of soup. They stole pump and flooded main chamber with soup.
Stupid plan. Surprisingly worked.
During escape, found Ivan. Cocoa man tried to sacrifice self for group. We almost let him, but vvent back eventually. Cocoa-man good fighter, bested several assassins but Ivan to stronk, nearly killed him.
Shade got really fat eating soup. Jane pushed him like big rock. Hit Ivan like big rock. Think I heard rib snap. Very happy noise.
We battle Ivan. He may be stronk, but he can still be poisoned like man. Brought low by his own devices. I drove him into the dirt.
Lizard man offered me green knife. Ritual dagger. Vve all look away from Ivan. Look back. I stab Andre.
Andre you probably read this in secret. I really did not mean to stab you. Please forgive.
Ivan and his bag of tricks let him switch with Andre. Not before poison maimed and marred, but escaped death no less. Very, very angry
We continue on, trudge through soup. Party has made way toward exit. Vve regroup. In next room many dead assassins and rest of team. Four more people join us. One is dead, so doesn’t join but i don’t want to exclude. They die for us. Honor that loss.
Hear buttercup is up with pump. Vve escape fortress. Find big pump. No buttercup.
Assassin reveal themselves. ALL of them. Surrounded. Outnumbered many times over. Ivan appears. Has buttercup by the throat. Demands many things. monologues. Typical Ivan. New party member. Small confused gendered elf man with vvong horns tries to save Buttercup. Fails. Dives into assassin crowd.
Ivan slits Buttercups throat. He is dead.
Zelkova and Andre try to figure out swap magic. Doesn’t vvork. Nearly kills Andre. Cocoa saves once again. And sprouts vvings? Vveird pair those two. Cocoa grabs everyone he can, flies over assassin ranks toward Andre. Keepers appear, assault the assassin ranks and storm fortress.
Jane and I are throw at Ivan. Our daggers dance. The pump explodes, Mathias’s fault. Lots of shrapnel and pain.
Finally. Dagger finds Ivan’s heart.
Jane goes mad. Takes Ivan’s face. Vvears it.
I vvish not to know vvhat vvas done to her any more.
Assassins scatter. Sister tried to interfere with Ivan’s death. Failed. Ran with the rest. Hope not to see her again.
With Ivan dead, the Keepers rushed the fortress releasing captives. Why they were there, no one can say for certain. Vve left quickly. No masks in the carnival is bad news. Vve made it out with little issue. Surprising.
Andre now stays vvith me at kitten.
Speaking of. Nin in pregnant place for some time. Apparently Orgoth has baby coming. He vvould be happy man. Vvonder what child’s name will be.
Kitten now has strange fallen bar man. Toland. Different from other fallen. Race lines looks less like lines, more like vvaterfalls. Skin glows. Does drinks vvell. Good man. I think.
Bread and Cocoa obsessed with justice. Vvill be on best behavior around them.
Crow man funded Bread and Cocoa to save us, not Zelkova. My trust for birds grows thinner by the day. Vvhat is crow plan?
Future looks weird. Lived life to kill Ivan. Not sure vvhat to do now that he is dead.
PS. Vve murdered Owen. He turned into monster. Vve murdered again. Vvould like to forget him.