Swamped Chapter 20 Page 10

Dreamers of Alexandra is the title, but the subtitle is particularly surprising – Forbidden Romance in the Desert.

You’re curious about it, but you’re also mindful of where you are. Maybe Rider’s not coming back, but someone’s sure to come looking in his room sometime.

You decide to take a quick look and see what it’s about.

Frei had always dreamed of greater things. Born in the desert to a poor family, he always thought about what lay beyond the great expanse of sand, and how he might one day see it with his own eyes.

But he was always held back by the need to work every day. Everyone in the family needed to work, in order to keep themselves fed…

You flip ahead a bit.

“Frei, I am sorry. This can no longer go on,” Prince Namde said, shaking his head. “There was always a danger in our love, but now it is too great. Aedra stands ready to destroy our grand city. Our only hope of stopping this war is for me to accept their terms and wed Princess Alexandra.”

“But she will control the city!” Frei said. “I’ll never bow to an Aedran! Never!”

“Frei, I know your anger. But I must act as a ruler before I act as a man. I am sorry, but I can only ask you to leave now, and forget me. Under Aedran rule, our future is grim, but if we deny them, we have no future at all.”

“What of our dreams, Namde?” Frei spat back, as he walked out. “I haven’t forgotten mine. But you seem to have abandoned yours.”

“Dreams are wonderful things, Frei. But a Prince must yield to reality.”

You definitely want to read this later. It’s the only link you have left to your father.

But right now, you’ve got to slip back; hopefully Razor’s made his way out.

You head back down the dark passage, only to run into someone you can’t see. You freeze up – is Razor still around?

“I told you not to wander!” Crook says, annoyed. “This leads to Rider’s room, and it’s ill luck to go in there. Even if he’s not around. No, especially if he’s not. He’ll know, somehow.”

“I had to,” you say. “Razor knows about this passage.”

“HE WHAT?” Crook shouts, before catching himself. “Damn. Now I need a new place to hide you. Fortunately it’s suppertime, so there’s not that many folks in the halls, but I’m still not sure where would be best… Hang on, let’s get out of this darkness, and you eat up some of this swamp mush while I work out where we go next.”

You follow him out, then sit down and start eating. You’re at a point where you actually appreciate this bland stuff.

But where are you going next?

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the crawl space


Sounds like some Marshguards are shouting…more than usual. Oh! Looks like that Corvus guy woke up!