Swamped Chapter 4 Page 1

“I’m Marshall,” says the first, sneering. The sergeant glares at him.

“Don’t play around, Tenth.”

“Ugh, you and your damn numbers. Fine, I’m Tom Tenth and don’t you dare call me that. I’m the fastest blinker in this whole damn swamp.” He blinks more times than you can count just to drive the point home.

The next knight to speak wields a large battleaxe and is noticeably larger than her squadmates.

“Juliet Corser. I’m really more of an artist than a fighter; I came to the swamp for inspiration.”

“You don’t want to see her art. Trust me,” Tom interjects. Juliet just ignores him, and the knight you recognize from yesterday speaks up next.

“Mark Conchway. And I’ve got better taste in games than your new friend, rookie. I should show you…” He pauses just long enough to notice the sergeant’s disapproving glare. “…when we next have time free, of course.” He steps back and starts muttering under his breath. “Not that I have as much thanks to this training nonsense…

Another knight with a pair of gloves similar to your own is the next to talk, though she doesn’t look at you as she speaks.

“Mary Baker. Sometimes they call me Thirteenth, but Baker’s my actual surname and I prefer it.”

“Lucky,” Tom Tenth grumbles. “Why do you people get two names?”

She turns towards Tom to glare at him as she continues. “And I see you’ve got Flame’s gloves. I have a pair of Northwinds. They’re designed to enhance throwing, though not as much as yours, but they make it easier to catch things as well. I imagine we’ll do a lot of throwing practice together.”

The next knight is carrying a net and trident.

“Jackson’s the name. I learned my way around a boat, and frankly the swamp barge runs more smoothly. I’ve got a number of useful tricks to teach you with a rope, though I don’t know if that’s going to make it into the training.”

The next knight doesn’t say anything until the sergeant clears her throat a few times.

“Oh. Uh. I’m Stacy. Hi.”

Stacy yawns and doesn’t say anything more, so the last knight speaks up.

“Riley.” They hold up their long knives. “Knife fighter. Grew up in a swamp, though a safer one than this. We raised tame gatorlisks to sell their meat. Not much demand, but we got by.” Riley then sheathes their knives, and their pose suggests they’re done with their introduction.

That seems to be all of them.

“It’s nice to meet you all,” you say. You try to shake hands with everyone, but only Mary, Jackson, and Juliet accept. Tom Tenth seems too upset about being Tom Tenth, Mark doesn’t seem to care what’s going on, Stacy doesn’t seem to notice your hand even when you wave it in front of your face, and Riley just mumbles something and turns away.

“Right, then. Now that’s taken care of, it’s time for actual training. We’re going to start with swimming, as usual, so that means it’s time for the best swimmer among you to help out. And that would be…”

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Despite what you might think, turns out it’s Stacy!

Too bad she can’t be assed to go in the water today

Yes Stacy

Author’s Note:

Quite a few new characters introduced! Some of them will have bigger roles than others, but they’re all going to have their moments coming up.

If I hadn’t gotten any suggestions, I probably would have picked Stacy for this next scene anyways.