She was sitting upwind of the small path making its way towards the inconspicuous stone hut protruding the mountain side to her right. She could see the path clearly the whole way from where it left the forest to the door frame with the brittle looking wooden door. It was just a two minute walk from the edge of the forest, but Niema knew that the path and the surrounding, peaceful looking area was teeming with traps, conventional as well as magical. Everything about this place was a lie and made to look peaceful. Many had gotten lured into a false sense of security before succumbing to, and she had to admit from a professional viewpoint, an ingeniously laid trap of some sorts.
She had once admired the maker of those traps.
At the time when he was still her mentor.
Long before he had broken the code and betrayed the guild.
While she was waiting in the shadow of a small stony overhang, keeping halfway between the Shadowfell and the material plane, her mind wandered back. She started smiling when her thoughts reached the time when she travelled with that rough bunch of adventurers. It had been like a holiday, a time where she didn't have to keep up appearances as much as usual. A time where she could pretend to be someone close to her real self.
She tried to remember the details of how she met them. They had made her job easier by killing her target Kelarel. She wasn't sure what drove her at the time to reveal herself and even join them, but the group had something that intrigued her. Maybe it was their chaotic approach to battle that she had witnessed at the time. After all, it had started by throwing an Eladrin down into the midst of the enemy, apparently by accident. What followed wasn't less chaotic. They just seemed to jump into the battle in random order and tried to hack away at any enemy in sight. How they had managed to hold on to a healer without him cursing and giving up after the first battle eluded her. Well, joining them and using them as cover had turned out to be fun for most of the time.
A sensation that could be felt along the connections of the shadows brought her thoughts back to the real world. Someone was coming and travelling along the shadows next to the path. She relaxed when she could feel the inaptitude of the person attempting to go unnoticed. Clearly a lower level assassin who had been tempted by the reward. After all, it was an open contract, offered to all members of her house. Maybe he was also motivated by the inevitable increase in status he would gain by transferring a member of such higher level to the lands of the Queen.
She concentrated on his position and her mental eye followed him towards the edge of the forest.
She started smiling and was preparing for a good show.