After joining the Society, I was able to find steady work and resume my magical studies. Though I didn’t have Windy to teach me any longer, I was able to make my own way and performed minor enchantments for people, mostly to enhance their senses, which became very popular with those in my Faction.
I wandered afield, exploring the city, save for the Hive, which I had already spent enough time in. I had been warned by Annali that the City could be very dangerous, especially for those who were too trusting or unsuspecting, but I had nothing to fear on that count. I had lived in a world ruled by nightmares who had their own private fiefdoms. The mists bore out true nightmarish creatures, but even neighbors in towns and villages could not be trusted.
Rina had taught me well how to hold on to my purse, and what to look for in people.
Even so jaded, I had no trouble appreciating the beauty the city presented. I found myself favoring streets with artists showing off their paintings or musicians entertaining the passersby with their songs, all for the hope of a few coins in a cup. Smiths accompanied the music with the ring of their hammers as they forged weapons, armor, and house wares. I watched as people danced, both to music and to deadlier duels.
I could have gotten much of the same by staying close to the Festhall, for it was the heart of such artisans, but to see how it was different throughout the city felt right to me, an experience I needed. So while I took lessons for free at the Festhall on how to play Virgil’s flute. I tossed a few coins into a cup and asked a tiefling woman for some lessons. Though skeptical, she agreed and put up with my squeaks until I produced a soft string of notes that accompanied her own playing.
I knew I would return to these streets many times.