Swamped Chapter 34 Page 16

“Yeah, I got a plan,” you say. “We do it real fast. Can I borrow your mudpike for a second?”

She hands it over, and you vault onto the nearest desert horse.

“Thanks. Grab it and get on, it’ll be easier the fewer horses we have to catch.”

Rivers picks up the mudpike, and you help her get up behind the hump.

“Do you have any idea how to steer a desert horse?” she asks.

“Well, uh, no.”

“Neither do I. So if it starts running, like the rest seem to be, we’re stuck going where it wants to go.”

Rider comes up a moment later. He hands you your pike.

“I’d love to help, but we don’t have time for me to give your ride a talk,” he says. “The desert horses are panicked because they felt a tremor deep below. They’re more sensitive to that than we are.”

You suddenly realize what that means.

“Burrowers.”

“Indeed. I can’t say how big they are, but they’re likely headed for the surface. You’d best follow quickly.”

“I would, but it seems our desert friends don’t believe in reins.”

Speaking of that, the Wanderer you were just fighting seems to be getting up, slowly. You should probably get away, now – preferably in the direction of the wagon.

But how are you supposed to get this desert horse going where you want it to?

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Suggestions:

A smack on the tush ought to do it! Then use the blunt end of your mudpike to tap the opposite side of the neck from the direction you want it to travel; it should naturally move away from the irritant (assuming it doesn’t throw you off in outrage…).

Whew! Lucky that wanderer is running away from you!

Oh all of them are running away from you…or uhm…from the direction you’re headed.