Abner closed the door, carefully barring and locking it. Touching one hand to the wall, he spoke an incantation under his breath.
As he finished, he heard a faint moaning from behind him, and turned. He watched impassively as the man on the floor, feet and arms bound, struggled slowly to his knees.
His breath rasping in his throat, the man caught sight of Abner for the first time, standing silent, with his red hood concealing his face and a knife grasped in one hand, a long blade for skinning animals, that shone dully in the light of a torch on the wall. The man's eyes widened, and he couldn't speak except to sound like he was choking in pure fear.
"Do you know what a trouble I had finding you," Abner spoke quietly, "Three months, and in the end I even had to stoop to associating with beggars."
"Who are you?"
"You don't know?" Abner shook his head, "I am... was, rather, an Anchorite."
For the first time, Abner momentarily showed emotion, a bitter malice that came over his voice as he spoke of his past.
" But... that is neither here or now. You are Lek Gavin. You once, in a place far from here, served under the banners of Loht, the would-be usurper. As to your crimes, I have no doubt they are many, quite apart from what I already know of your history," he paused for a second. "Now, you know as well as I do of the war. One particular thing interested me particularly about you, however.
Near the end of the war, you were sent, along with a small group of Loht's best men, away. Looking for a weapon of power... the Epitoria. All of the others whose names I discovered are either dead or gone. You are going to tell me where the Epitoria is."
Abner spoke a word of magic, and a whip, a cat o' nine tails, appeared in his other hand.
"Please," the man on the floor said, fear making his words difficult to understand, "I can't tell you, don't know. We spent five months looking, until we were almost all dead from starvation, or killed by monsters and bandits. I ran away, knew I'd be followed... Please..."
Abner didn't answer. He lifted the whip, and with a crack, he brought the lash down on the prisoner's back...
"You know, my spell prevents anyone from hearing you, " Abner said conversationally.
Lek lay on the floor, his body cut open all over by the lash of the whip, his mouth open in what was, at the moment, a silent scream.
"Let's try again, shall we? Where is the Epitoria?"
After a few seconds, Lek drew a ragged gasp, and began screaming again.
"No? Perhaps with more encouragement?"
After a while, Abner finally let the whip drop.
"It seems I was wrong about you, " now his voice was cold and taut with frustration barely controlled. "Well, I can't just leave you here."
Abner lifted the carving knife.
"The light sanctify my blade. Justice be done."
About an hour later, Abner walked out of the room, shutting the door quietly behind him.
As he stepped out into the street, he heard a scream in the distance. Quickly he spoke a word of magic, and he disappeared.
He reappeared, knife raised in one hand, eyes scanning the street warily. Off in the distance, he saw an old man with a bird on his shoulder, and beyond that a figure in black walking along the docks.