The ride passed in fits and bumps, right hand twisted up in the reins while I tried very much not to fall out the saddle, trusted my horse to know what he was doing and follow the other. I didn’t manage to get any sleep. Mariead might have—at times I looked over and saw her head lolling […]
The north shore of the Runing was a jumble of rock, moss, and roots, with plenty of overhangs and outcroppings to hide us from eyes on the bridge. Eris put in between two low hills that crumbled into the river, overgrown with brambles on either side. A tranquil little cove was formed among the stones, […]
Finally, I was warm all the way through. The cold of a long, dark autumn was gone like a bad dream, replaced by the warmth of fine furs and blazing fires. Mulled wine and fond company, the touch of an affectionate hand. Warmth filled me up, overflowed from me, pleasantly shining from my eyes, pouring hot from […]
I came out of the Vault like a marten into a henhouse, if that marten staggered out one foot in front of the other, limped on a bruised hip, and nursed a knee that throbbed with each step. There were scarlets at the door, clearing the way into the Armory over my half-built barricade. They […]
This time of year, few boats crossed the Runing; navigating that mess of ice was a difficult feat for all but the most experienced. But, nevertheless, a serviceable little rowboat was tucked up against one of the pillars of the Angel’s Span. A bundled-up figure sat in the stern, tall even from this far away, two oars crossed in front of her in as she held the boat in place with one hand.
The blacksmith had fled. Mariead let him pass, put her back to the door to heave it shut. She held a hunter’s weapon, short, slightly curved. Her face was red, fresh blood trickling from her lip. She put another arrow on the string. She struggled to draw, fingers tight around the fletching, breath forced out of her […]
Two men advanced on me, each with sword and buckler. Sergeant at the rear. The one on my left was green, untrained; I saw it in his eyes, in his footwork, in the left hand too close to his chest. First time using the buckler, maybe more used to a foot soldier’s shield.
I wore one stolen sword at my hip, carried the other in my hand, fingers wrapped around crossguard and hilt. Mariead had the bodkin somewhere under her stolen scarlet, cudgel in hand. The halls were a maze, each corridor the same, every line of sight blocked by sets of doors. It was like being in a dream surrounded by […]