1.2.6 – Black Flag  

Mud squished up under my feet as I stared, hands on her shoulders. Damp air was cold on my newly-bare face, and the skin felt too tight, taut, like a skull.   The Inquisitor rode a white horse. Everything he and his horse wore was white, splashed with mud from the road north, tack and harness […]

1.2.5 – Widow’s Strop  

Steel sang back and forth, hissing over leather with each stroke, up and down. Broth rumbled and cast iron grated on the far side of the wall while I stood staring at steam rising from a basin of hot water, passing a long razor back and forth along its strop. The air was thick with […]

1.2.4 – False Faithful 

The front door creaked shut behind me, shutting out the mist. A woman’s voice rang from the other room, rosy and good-natured.   “I’ll just be a moment!”  The Forge was a tavern, which I found more confusing than I’d have admitted aloud. I stepped over the threshold onto a stone floor. The roof was low, […]

1.2.3 – Farm Furrow Weeds  

The road to Caer Lunan was long and marked with wagon ruts, packed dirt torn up into muddy furrows. My legs ached, bruises from yesterday’s fight and more twinging with each step, and I kept my head down, eyes up under my hood, watching the fields to either side as we walked in. I felt […]

1.2.2 – Caer Lunan  

Caer Lunan was not a large town.   It clustered up against a narrow ridge, nearly all its wee houses built with their backs to the slope. Among them, one central house stood out, and behind it, smaller but taller, a chapel with the Church’s star nailed atop its belltower.  We crouched near the edge of […]

1.2.1 – Taste of Hope 

“I asked Rina for food, as per your instructions.” Aidan delivered this report brusquely, just like he delivered us the flatbreads, now piled high with a glistening, broken-up topping. We sat together in the dark, our backs to the camp. “She gave us some of her rations. Something called–”  “Oh, fuck me,” I recognized the […]

1.2.0 – Stolen Pages  

Two druids stood sentry at the west edge of the grove, one tall, one short, indistinct in the fog and the gathering dark.   “Oli.” The tall one’s words were muffled by a scarf that masked her features. “Outsiders. We keep watch here, go no further.”  I nodded to her.   “Oli, we’re here to take watch […]