The Door was hard to push, this time; Alexa held the doorknob open while she, Cole, and Xenia shoved it until it opened enough to let them through.
Once through, it was easy enough to see what had happened: rubble had fallen on the other side, obstructing the door. Most of the building had fallen, actually, leaving a single wall, braced and supported with scrap wood.
“Ruins?” Josie picked up a stone, and frowned. “No…”
“No.” Steven’s instruments were beeping. “No, this is fresh damage. Nothing here has been sitting for more than a couple years.”
“Put that away.” Cole dropped his gun in a side pocket and pulled out a knife instead. “Xen…”
“Got it. What’s up?”
In the center of this, Alexa and Aerich shared a look. The team did this, sometimes. They would wait until their skills were needed.
“That’s real specific.”
“The one with the implants.”
“There’s no tech here.” The lean really-not-an-assassin, really, looked around. Alexa had already made the connection. She grabbed her cloak out of her pack and nudged Aerich to do the same.
“Exactly. And how do you know when you’re in a sword and sorcery universe?”
“Cole, I’m not a goddamned student.”
“No tech.” Alexa stepped forward. “Dragon-claw marks on the stone. No wires anywhere. And that’s a castle in the distance.”
“What does that make us, then?” Josie, noting Alexa’s cloak, was doning her own.
They didn’t need to see Aerich’s face to know he was smiling. It showed in his voice. “Well, I do believe we’re the adventuring party of mysterious strangers.”
Originally posted here.