Swamped Chapter 29 Page 2

“Don’t suppose I can at least get a good stiff drink out of all this mess?” you ask Keeper. “I’ve had a rough day.”

“Suppose I can give you that much,” he grumbles. “But just half a glass, got it? I ain’t made of this stuff.”

“Fair.”

Keeper pours you a drink as you take your mask off. It’s hardly top-quality liquor, but it’s leagues above anything you could have had in the desert.

“So. Did you go scrounging through my leaf supplies?” Keeper asks. “I can’t afford to let them get mixed up, y’know. Or else I’ll have a whole mess hall filled with sleepyheads.”

“I didn’t mix anything. Took a bunch from a box with the most common marking, a few from the other two in case they ended up being useful.”

“Ah. That would explain these ones Crosswinds gave me. Must have been confiscated off you. So which boxes did you take them from?”

“Three from one of those boxes, two from that one,” you say, pointing to the other markings. “I know one puts you to sleep, got a mouthful of that one while Crosswinds checked things out. Don’t know what the third type does.”

“Neither do I, yet,” Keeper grumbles. “A foraging team found a tree in an odd state the other day and they couldn’t tell what kind it was. I’m supposed to run tests on it, but I haven’t had the time to spare for that.”

Not spoken, but you got the message clearly enough: he might have had some more time if he wasn’t stuck babysitting for you.

Well, it’s not like you wanted to be here either. You just want to get out. And, as Keeper runs off to the counter, you realize that you’re not being watched that closely.

Except, Crosswinds’ passage is locked up, and a quick investigation reveals that the hole you made earlier is already blocked off. You figured that might have happened.

You could just make a run for it, but then everyone in this damn base would see you. And you doubt Razor would be so restrained after you pulled a stunt like that.

So what are you going to do?

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