The Hunter – Part Six
The sneaky little man was obviously up to something. He had that look that his father used to give him when he was newly popped, explaining something he already knew to him. Sa’nyang was not sure what exactly it was, but he apparently appeared to be slow-minded?
Not long after he had asked the man to Turn, as he requested, his raiment changed. Before, he wore black raiment with white inner-garments and a black butterfly-shaped ribbon around his neck. Now, he wore hide and fur in the greens and grey of the woods. Even his hair which had been neat and slicked to one side was now messy and tied at the back.
The man – he supposed he should call him by his name now – shivered slightly.
“That always feels so strange.”
Always. So. He’s done it before.
Sa’nyang could now feel him, though, like he could feel Jindo. He now saw that he was a level 5 Dittomancer and he had Escape Artist and Hide in Plain Sight specials. Still no upkeep.
“Still no upkeep?” The – Sicks said. “Not sensing anything?”
“No.” Coincidence. Surely.
“Okay. I don’t know what it is – Thinkamancy, Date-a-mancy… maybe even Carnymancy. I’ll find out, though.”
In the end, he was not too concerned about what this man’s motives were. Even if the side should fall, Nature would find a way to continue on without him.
“What do you need?” The question appeared to throw him off his game – had he wanted to lead him toward that rather than being offered outright?
“I, uh… well, Chief Caster would make it easier for me to offer terms. Promote me, and I’ll take care of everything.”
Chief Caster. The position the man held before, and now wished to hold again. Interesting.
“You wish to be Chief?”
Sicks suddenly looked apologetic. “No, no, I don’t want to be chief. I don’t want to be Ruler. Being Chief Caster helps me take care of matters involving magic more quickly.”
Sa’nyang almost rolled his eyes. He does think I’m simple-minded.
“Very well. But although we are on the same Side, betray me and I’ll use this on you,” Sa’nyang said, drawing his hunting knife, razor-sharp on one side and jagged edge on the other. “We’ll see if I can stuff a croaked unit and hang it on my wall.” He let out the most primal and primitive growl he could imagine.
Sicks’ ever-present smile actually faltered a little. He apparently bought the act. Hrm. Not bad. He thought mirthfully. Maybe it’s a hidden Special I have?
“Of course…. What should I call you, by the way? Your title?”
“I am Warden of the Woods, as was my father before me. ‘Warden’ seems appropriate.”
“Okay. Warden. I’ll go through and make a few deals and get you sorted out. It might take a few Turns, though, so don’t wait up for me.”
With that, Sicks disappeared through the Portal.
Back in his home – he still thought of it as home – he sat in his upgraded chair a moment and patted Jindo who had waited faithfully by the hearth. Night approached - Turn was ending.
“Tomorrow, my friend,” he told Jindo, “we go somewhere we’ve never been before. We’ll see what’s outside the woods.”
Is the newly aligned double O caster not aware of the treasury? It's an important point in the comic, that Ivan and Claud could sense Charlescomm's once they Turned, so even if it's hidden from him by the unknown magic I would think it would be commented on. It could also be that the "sneaky little man" is deliberately not mentioning it, but with no expenditure from unit popping and a massive amount of turns with upkeep supplemented by hunting, the income from even a level one should have piled up into something noteworthy.