The Cliffport chief of police woke up in a cold sweat. Every night it was the same dream, the same laughing face ending his life with one blow of his sword. He sighed, he really needed a holiday.
X X X
Well this was nice. He had managed to wrangle a couple of days away from the force and was staying in a quaint hotel in the snowy mountains close to the dwarven lands. Cliffport may be going to ruin without him but for now he was determined to enjoy himself. Looking at the visitor book it seemed the only other room was also booked. Maybe he would meet them sometime tomorrow. For now he went to his room and tried to get some sleep.
He woke up early the next morning, the thrice-cursed nightmare still running through his head. Exact details were vague but he was sure he would remember that madly grinning face for the rest of his life. Deciding it was late enough to get up he got dressed and left his room. Heading into the small dining room he noticed two people already seated at a table, probably the other guests. One, a blond-haired man, was sitting with his back to him and the other was dressed as a paladin. He didn’t hold with paladins. They always thought everything could be solved by casting “detect evil”, one of the reasons he wouldn’t have it used in his town. Just then the other man turned to look at him and all thoughts of paladins were pushed aside to make way for white hot terror. It was him! That face, so often grinning sadistically in his dreams as he expired in a pool of blood. He turned and ran back to his room, slamming the door and leaning against it. Could his dream have been a premonition? Was this man going to kill him? But he was with a paladin! Why would someone working with a paladin want to kill him? And look so evil while doing so. Maybe this holiday was a bad idea after all.
Sometime later the sound of retreating hoof beats broke through his contemplation. Maybe they had left! He looked out the window but could not tell, through the furiously falling snow, whether both had gone or just one. Deciding he would risk it, he was creeping along to the front desk to see who had signed out when from the other room came a distressed “Oh not again!” The blond-haired man ran straight past him and headed for the front door. Trying to follow the paladin, however, was not even remotely feasible as by now the snow was falling so thick and fast that even leaving the hotel would be dangerous. Closing the door again he walked back past the chief and sat on his bed, even the air around him speaking of misery. The chief was surprised. This lad didn’t look capable of killing someone; in fact he seemed close to tears about being left here. He looked so sad that the chief was moved to try and comfort him. He walked across and sat beside him on the bed.
“I think I lost my job, again.”
“Yeah, I used to work for…”
As he listened to blonde’s life story, nodding occasionally, he was thinking. God, he’s really pretty close up, and so sweet and naive. I really want to kiss him, but what if he doesn’t go that way? I’m probably too old for him anyway. Damn it, I’m going to kiss him anyway; and leant over and did so, stopping him in mid sentence. Soon the only noises were the rustle of clothing and the occasional soft sigh. Afterwards the chief fell into his first dreamless sleep in months.
X X X
Back in Cliffport there was a lot of work to do, paperwork and such but occasionally he would stop with a smile on his face. The other cops noticed and teased him about it.
“Holiday romance Chief?”
“Yeah, something like that.”