Hamish Montrose stared stoically out the open window behind his commanding officer. He heard the voice and would recall the exact conversation later. For now, he was content to let the man yell himself hoarse about the botched assignment. The clouds outside were an iron-grey. Low in the air, they carried the scent of water and decay from the nearby docks. He wrinkled his nose, envisioning the captain’s body floating in the brown water. It brought a ghost of a smile to his lips. He sensed, rather than heard the captain slowing in his tirade. It was time to pay attention once more.
“I want that bitch caught, Montrose. Breaking her in public will break the back of the resistance, and secure us power and privilege. You understand this, do you not?” The captain sat behind his huge oaken desk, and glared balefully at Hamish with his remaining eye. The other had been lost when he nearly burned to death. He was a moderately powerful mage, but the burns rendered him a cripple, and only suited for organizational work, which the man detested with a passion. He passed his anger and self-loathing down upon his subordinates berating and belittling their efforts every chance he was given. Hamish loathed him completely. Killing him would guarantee advancement. Hamish glanced at the captain, going through his memory to find what the captain wanted.
He glanced at the sour, burned man, and said with quiet intensity, “Of course, I will make it my sole priority to track and capture her.” He seethed inside while giving the captain an obsequious smile. “Get out of my sight. Report back on progress daily. If you can’t then I’m sure someone else would fill your incompetent shoes just as inadequately as you.” Hamish bit down on his tongue, offering the same bland smile as before. The captain waved him out then turned to looking at the papers on his desk. Montrose walked out, mentally watching the captain’s gutted body float down into the brown water as fish bit small pieces off. He enjoyed the thought of the man being eaten alive. The thought kept him comfortable in the cold, wet wind.