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A Shadow's Armour

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Had the completely ordinary bundle of red, white and black fabric and steel been handed to literally anybody else within the range of ten kilometres around the farm, it would have caused absolutely no agitation at all. On the contrary, even. However, as the fates would have it, the recipient of this peculiar gift was the only person within that range who was as repulsed about it as he would have been about an offering of a pail of rotting meatbug stew seasoned with demon mushrooms and topped with wriggling worms.

- This is a shadow’s armour! – Lares made no attempt to hide his disgust for the infamous garment.

- It’s not. The shadows wore what they had taken from the dead militia. The uniform has changed since.

- They changed the gloves, and that’s it!

- You are being childish.

- I am not putting this on!

- Your style… or whatever you are willing to call it… does not go together with anything that has lots of steel to it, and you are not going anywhere as you are right now! – Lee’s voice gained this annoying, formal tone to it, as it did every time he did not intend to lose an argument to anyone; not even an arrogant, overly confident thief. He showed the bundle into Lares’ hands and retreated, just in case the rogue attempted to return it. – Either you put this on, or we’ll lock you up in the pantry at the farmhouse and post two paladins at the door. Your choice.

- Damn it, where is Wolf when you need him? Are you trying to tell me the famed paladins have nothing better to do that guard a door to an empty pantry?

- Just so you know; if I see you outside as you are now, I’ll drag you back by the ear, and you will be held personally accountable for anything that goes wrong while I am absent.

- You’ll owe me a favour for this, - Lares grumbled. – A whole lot of favours.

***

- You actually look good in that. Who’d have thought? – Lee mused himself, earning an “I’ll murder you in your sleep” look from Lares while the latter simultaneously tried to preserve as much dignity as he could while wearing a shadow’s armour. – What? Can’t take a compliment?

- Just so you know, - the imitation was nearly perfect, receiving an amused snort from the person being mocked, - you will be the one taking this off later.

- I’ll be happy to comply. Provided, of course, if we both survive today.

- Don’t you dare taking the easy way out of this!