It was all he could do to hold in his bark of laughter, leaning against the walls of the fortress, gripping his sides in a struggle to suppress his mirth. Yti quirked an eyebrow, his countenance not reflecting the same level of joyous amusement Wren's did.
"Is this entertaining to you?" he demanded, pursing his lips, his dark brows creasing with the words.
Slapping his knee, what giggles Wren had managed to hide flooded out, echoing through the dark marble halls. "No," he spluttered, straightening at the stern look Yti pointedly glared at him. Clasping his hands behind his back, he shook his head, although his words were still tickled with his previous chuckles. "No, sir."
"Good," Yti said decidedly, turning back to the massive map sprawled across the dimly lit wall. "Now as I was saying, if we attack directly from the port, they will have no means of escape. With the proper resources, an ambush would almost be too easy-"
His words were cut short by another breath of poorly hidden chuckles from Wren, and he pivoted on his heel, dark eyes flashing. Composing himself for the second time, Wren shifted uneasily, mouth quirking in an infuriating smirk.
"Sorry, sir. I was only wondering if His Majesty has been informed his professional assassin is a skilled knitter."
Yti's face tightened and he gripped the back of a nearby chair, rubbing the bridge of his nose with his free hand. "I do not knit, Cadet. I crochet."
His words only seemed to increase the trainee's peels of laughter, and he pressed a hand over his mouth trying to silence them, although it did little.
"You would do well to learn not all skills are acquired with a blade," Yti snapped, but the blush creeping up the base of his neck was too hot to hide. "An assassin requires quick fingers; crocheting has provided me with far nimbler theft abilties than anyone in this heaven-forgotten kingdom." Wren seemed to sense his embarrassment, which only made his smile grow. "Do you question me, Cadet?" he asked.
"No, sir," he coughed, falling back into his military stance. After a heartbeat's silence, he added, "Would you teach me? If I am to become an assassin like you, I want to know." Despite his calm face, his brown eyes twinkled mischievously as he added, "Or perhaps, I could just ask my grandmother."
"Forgive me, sir," he hurriedly said, ducking his head. "Only a suggestion. We could knit each other scarves," he mumbled. "Early Christmas presents..."
At this, Yti's usually intimidating presence slipped and he turned away with a grown, burying his face in his hands. "Cadet," he roared when he regained his cool. "Do I wrongly assume that you came to me to learn?"
"And do I wrongly assume that you were the top of your class in the palace? That you surpassed your classmates in all of your training?"
"Then," Yti scowled, the words hardly audible through his clenched teeth. "I rightly assume you still desire to be taught?"
Wren nodded. "Yes, sir. Well," he continued beneath his breath. "I did before I found out you probably have a membership to Hobby Lobby."
At the words, Yti snapped, slamming his fist on the desk so hard the small glasses rattled. "Out!" he yelled, brandishing his arms toward the wooden door. "Right now!"
"Sir," Wren said with a stiff bow, turning so Yti wouldn't see the grin already breaking through his stoic countenance.
"And not a word of this to anyone!" Yti ordered as the door slammed closed, suddenly finding himself standing in an empty room.
Loosing a heavy breath, he fumbled through his desk drawers, finally finding what he had been looking for: a simple, sleek phone. Untrackable at that. Able to reach even the most fortified of locations.
Dialing the numbers he had long ago memorized, the assassin slumped down into his chair, holding the phone to his ear as a women's pleasant voice crackled through.
"Hobby Lobby. How may I help you?"