Because of the suddenness of the Jester’s attack, the man in shiny bone armor didn’t have enough time to aim the shot from his wand. Even so, the bolt struck Matticus. It was not enough to slow his momentum and he bowled into his target. After the collision, the man got to his feet. Matticus did not.
He looked around for Revis, but didn’t see him anywhere. With a shout of anger, the Knight struck him hard from behind with his daggers. The man crumpled to the ground. Revis kicked the man’s wand into the corner and tied his hands together behind his back.
Turning Matticus over, he saw that the bolt had struck him in the stomach. It was on the right side of his torso, so Revis hoped that meant it had missed all of the important parts inside of him. The Knight pulled a vial out of his pack and poured some of the liquid into Matticus’ mouth.
“Ow,” the Jester groaned as he regained consciousness. “Remind me to never do that again.”
Revis held the vial up for Matticus to see. “This is the last vial of healing potion I have. We need to save the rest of this, so please be more careful in the future.”
“Me? More careful? You!” The Jester stammered and staggered as he found his feet, swaying dangerously. Revis reached out a steadying hand but Matticus brushed him off, and fell to his rear as a result. “Ow!”
“Come on,” Revis said, offering a hand to help Matticus back to his feet.
The Jester refused the gesture and went into a rant, “If you hadn’t rushed in here in the first place. If you had launched your attack with some sort some semblance of a plan. If you hadn’t let him get the drop on you. If, if, if. But, I’m the one that needs to be careful? Knight, you need to watch yourself. I’m considering demoting you to squire or stable-boy or something equally demeaning.”
Revis offered his hand again, with an accompanying smirk, “You can’t demote me, Jesterness, nobody else would take the job in my place.”
Matticus took his Knight’s hand and together they got him back on his feet. “You might be surprised, Revis.”
The knight bowed slightly to show deference to his liege, but the smile never faded from his lips.
Matticus scowled, and then his face scrunched up to show his confusion, “Wait, I thought you used the last of the healing potion to cure Jaded?”
A groan from the magician interrupted their conversation, and Revis said, “Let’s see what we are dealing with, shall we?”
“Hey,” Revis said, nudging the man with his foot. “Are you the one who keeps sending those sparkly things through that portal?”
“Not that one,” He replied. “The one in my other universe.”
“So, what do we call you, Mr. Two Universes?”
“You’re Twindaddy,” the Knight asked with a voice dripping with anger.
“You know him, Revis,” Matticus questioned incredulously.
“Revis,” Drun said, deep in thought. “Revis Edgewater?”
“How does he know your last name?”
Ignoring Matticus, Drun looked directly at the Knight. “Your mother never told you what happened to your brother?”
Responding, Revis shot back with, “She told me enough. She told me you killed him.”
“No. I am your brother.”
“That’s not true…… That’s impossible!”
“Search your feelings, Revis. You know it to be true!”
The two men stood staring at each other for a few seconds before Matticus interrupted them. “That was….surreal.”
“You guys are brothers?”
“And there are multiple uinverses, and the you from the other one is responsible for all the annoying sparkly vampires?”
“Yes and yes.”
“Crap, this is confusing.” Matticus saw what looked like a seat across the room, contemplated walking over to it, decided he wouldn’t make it, and fell to his rear again. “I’m not sure I’m recovered enough to process all this. I’m just the Jester…”
“If that’s your attitude,” Drun commented dryly, “then you are surely doomed.”
Revis ignored Matticus’ plight and turned to face his brother, “If you’ve known about me, why didn’t you reach out? No, never mind, that isn’t important. I just want to stop the flow of vampires, and get home to my wife and daughter and forget this ever happened. I have no brother.”
Revis brandished his daggers menacingly, “Tell us everything you know about what Twindaddy is doing!”
Drun looked between Revis’ face and the daggers and back again, “I’ll tell you everything, of course, but only after you admit that I am your brother.”
Revis’ face drained of color and then flushed a bright red as anger coursed through him. Despite his dazed state, Matticus could tell there was going to be trouble, but he couldn’t react fast enough to intervene. The Knight snarled and pulled his daggers back preparing to plunge them into Drun Kenman.
At the last second, Revis altered the angle of the strike. His daggers struck the floor, inches away from either side of Drun’s face. To Matticus’ surprise, the man didn’t even blink. He just looked up and smiled, “Well?”
With a curse, Revis pulled his daggers up and walked away. Matticus got to his feet and walked over to where the Knight was continuing his cursing tirade. “What’s the big deal,” Matticus asked. “All you have to do is say he’s your brother.”
“I won’t do it.”
“You don’t have to mean it. Just say it.”
“No. I won’t.”
“And if I make it an order?”
“We need his cooperation, Revis. Now, as the reigning Jester of the Kingdom, I order you to go tell him that you’re his brother.”
Revis continued his cursing. Matticus tried to hide his smirk. Putting up with all of Revis’ slights was sometimes a pain, but it was moments like this that made it all worth it.
After he walked back over to stand next to Drun, Revis looked down at the tied-up man and said, “Fine. You’re my brother.”
“Was that so hard?” Drun smiled wryly, his words dripping with sarcasm. “Now help me up.”
Revis laughed in the man’s face. “That wasn’t part of the deal, brother, and if you think I’m going to treat you any different than I was a minute ago, my daggers will show you how wrong you are.”
Drun’s eyes flicked to the Jester, but Matticus just shrugged. He agreed with his knight for once. A deal had been made, and Revis had upheld his part. Drun needed to tell them about Twindaddy or Revis would be free to extract the information however he saw fit. The glint in the Knight’s eyes indicated it would be messy.
For the first time, a hint of fear crept into Drun’s face. He struggled to sit up but the injuries he had sustained earlier, along with the bulky armor, inhibited his movements. Revis and Matticus watched him collapse into a heap on the floor again with more than a bit of glee. While this man wasn’t directly responsible for the sparkly vampire invasion, his alternate universe self was. Matticus secretly hoped any pain Drun felt would also be felt by Twindaddy. It would serve him right.
“I need a drink,” Drun sighed when he finally righted himself. “Let’s go to the cantina. I’ll tell you everything once we are there.”