My scalpel bit into the flesh of the man's face. I didn't know his name. Some low noble from the rich quarter. He needed to pay though. This glorified sack of delicious meat had a lot to pay for.
The incision went all the way though his cheek to his teeth. Blood oozed forth as his shallow breathing pushed air out the new hole.
The stitches I used to keep his mouth closed strained against his movements. Small rivulets of blood mixed with spittle passed his lips. Anaesthetic was wearing off.
Separating the muscle and skin, I got the man’s teeth on the right side of his face visible in the dim light of my operating room.
Using heated thin wire I cauterised the small vessels in the cheek. The white teeth were painted in a thick layer of blood. Using a pipette I washed away the red with cold water.
The sound of leather being pulled taught echoed in the small room. The man’s breathing increased and his head started to twitch. Being bound as he was he couldn’t disturb my work.
In a moment of weakness I licked my fingers and tasted the sweetness there. Human blood was always sweet, at least when it came to the nobles.
How long had it been since I ate well? I wouldn't starve much longer. The man had started thrashing in earnest now. His stark white teeth had small patches of blood next to them again.
“Stay still,” I growled as I pushed down hard on the side of his head. He whimpered and his resistance stalled. Humans were docile when confronted with force while trapped I’d found.
A wonder how they lasted so long or even made their society. The show of my pointed teeth and my dark skin was all it took.
If I couldn't return home, back to my people, I would make this place suffer. First I’d make this man suffer.
Taking my carving tool from the tray I began my work. The rune needed to be carved. Four teeth down this was the last, the trigger. The sharp thin spike picked small pieces off the tooth.
The small white flecks stuck to the red muscle. A gruesome display of the insides. The man tried to scream but his stitched mouth only allowed for muffled gurgles to come though his cheek.
Absorption runes were always the hardest and most intricate. There would be at least an hours work here. The man wouldn't remember though. He'd forget this night ever happened.
I'll probably need to pay for a healer to make the wounds look like brawling damage. I could afford that. It would be worth it. Just will need to catch extra rats this week.
Was the suffering of this city and its people worth the ancestors turning their backs on me when my experience came to an end. Ahmalla faceless slave of humans would never be with the ancestors.
For better or worse.