Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Light the Lamp So Bright--Part 16

Sacripant stared at the cart receding into the distance.  "So... you have a whole guild of... body... takers?"

"Sextons," answered Nathan.  "And yes."  He scratched his head.  "Well, they're also a religious brotherhood, actually.  The Lay Brothers of Saint Libitinia of the Tomb."

"Ahh, so they're monks," said Sacripant with a nod.

"No, no, it's a lay brotherhood," replied Nathan.  "No priests of monks may join.  We're another, actually.  Though not of a saint.  Uriel of the Blessed Seven himself is our patron.  We have an official prayer to him and everything." 

"But none of you are priests?" asked Sacripant.

"Not a one," replied Nathan.  "Priests cannot be Lamplighters or Sextons, and Sextons and Lamplighters can't be priests.  But Sextons are allowed to preside over funerals.  And take the good clothing from the unclaimed dead as payment."

Sacripant was silent for a moment. "I find this city deeply weird, you know."

Nathan nodded.  "You've said so.  Several times."

"Well, it's just something I feel obligated to repeat," said Sacripant.  He glanced around.  "Another weird thing was that man's head..."

"In what way?" asked Nathan.

"The back was smashed," replied Sacripant.

Nathan shrugged.  "He fell from a great height."

"And landed on his side," said Sacripant quietly.

Nathan glanced at the Erl.  "Is there a reason you're saying this now?"

"I don't trust this city's crowds, and I don't trust its guilds," answered Sacripant.

Nathan considered things.  "But you trust me?"

Sacripant nodded.  "I guess I do."

"Might be foolish," noted Nathan.  "I belong to both of those things."

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