Swamped Chapter 20 Page 5

You opt for caution, and sit still very quietly. Somewhere in there, you doze off.

When you wake up, you hear footsteps. Lots of them. Whatever was going on outside must have stopped; it sounds like this is a busy hallway. No wonder Crook didn’t want to hide you here earlier.

You put your ear to the wall and see if you can hear anything.

“I don’t care if it turned out to be dead, I don’t feel safe with a tunneler that size around.”

You don’t recognize this voice, but then, it’s not as if you’ve met that many Marshguards.

“I know what you mean. What if there’s more? And even without that, until we can fix that hole and get the wall back up, we’ve got another angle for the Bogknights to attack from.”

That voice is slightly familiar, though; you think it’s the Marshguard who was captured in the last rain. You never caught his name, though.

“It ain’t all bad news, I hear they caught that swimmer. Guess that makes up for the one-armed newmuck getting away.”

This seems to be a third voice; again, no one you know.

“That’s our Candlestick, always looking on the bright side,” says the first voice, slightly irritated. “That just puts us back where we were: with at least a tenth of our forces recovering from poison, Rider missing, and a gaping hole in the west wall. If the Bogknights get wind of how bad things are over here, they might just make a play for the fortress.”

“Actually, I heard the poison is actually desert fever,” says the second voice. “Not that it makes a difference. Worse, Long vanished with Rider, I hear, so who’s going to hold the Bogknights back if they get mad at us?”

“You three!”

That voice is unmistakable. It’s Razor. What could he want?

“Yes, sir?”

“No one’s seen Corvus in at least an hour. Claws says he was checking something out in the Roost before the attack, I can’t find anyone who’s seen him since. Go take a look there. And bring him straight to the dinner hall if you find him, I’ll be waiting.”

“Yes sir!”

You hear them walk off. Then you hear Razor shouting more orders at whoever’s nearby. About a half-dozen orders later, you hear what sounds like someone pacing.

“Anyone else in need of something to do?” Razor asks. You don’t hear an answer.

“Good. Then I think it’s about time I took a good look at Rider’s quarters.”

You start hearing him tap on the wall.

He knows about the passage you’re in.

What are you going to do?

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[strk]retreat into the darkness, walking backwards, slicer at the ready[/strk]

freeze up with a dumb look on your face and your slicer on the floor, you fuck-up

Lets check out Rider’s quarters first!