The soldiers had begun backing up again. Deline raised her chin in defiance at the enemy commander.
He had clearly had enough. With an angry grunt, he shoved Teshone in front of him. “Your turn,” he snarled.
The big man balked and stumbled. His forward foot barely missed hitting the outer circle. There was a blade pricking at him, urging him forward. Teshone looked at Carrone; he looked like he was pleading.
“No help in this direction, my ‘friend’.” Carrone hissed it out quietly. It sounded like final rites for the dying. Continue reading →
There were twelve soldiers — without uniforms, but Deklegion and Haloran from the looks of them— rushing towards Carrone and Deline.
“Halt!” The commander – had to be the commander, the way he was talking – pushed forward, pushing Teshone in front of him. Teshone clearly didn’t want to be moved, and the commander was using a sword and two of his cronies to do the forcing. “I’m not joking around, Carrone, I will push your friend into whatever trap you have next.”Continue reading →
“So there were fifty of them,” Deline murmured. They stood ready, weapons drawn, listening to the shouts and screams. “How many do you think we’ve taken out?”
“Over half,” he murmured back.” The shouting stopped; they fell silent.
Somewhere on the other side of the boulder there, a whole bunch of people were trying to kill them. It should have probably frightened Deline. They’d already blooded her here, for one. She found she was smiling. Carrone’s traps were nasty and amazing. The spell-work she’d been pulling out of nowhere was exhilarating. Continue reading →
The boulder jutted into the path, cutting it off until someone had carved their own path around it. From the looks of the trees growing in and around it, it had fallen over a hundred years ago, but Deline could still see how the path had been warped. It meant that until they came to the sharp edge of the stone, they couldn’t see anything ahead of them.
Carrone stepped ahead of her and she let him, her slingshot ready. He hissed and took a step back, an arrow flying over his shoulder.
Deline grabbed a handful of components from her hip pack and began a spell under her breath. Just as she was starting to speak, a voice boomed from the far side of the boulder. Continue reading →
“It would be nice to not be reminded of that,” Deline muttered. She held up her hands in his direction. “I suppose it’s hard for you to forget it.”
“The funny thing is, in most situations, it would be easy as anything to forget. You’d be dead. Your head would have been turned in. The bounty would have been collected, and I would be on to my next job.” He huffed, almost a laugh. “I didn’t think much about what I was doing – I mean, I thought about the hunt. I learned early on not to think about the deaths. They come, they go – sometimes they haunted me, but most of them just… they passed on.”Continue reading →
“You know, we could probably live here pretty comfortably forever.” Carrone looked at the door of the cabin and back to Deline before setting his pack on his shoulders. “I’d get better at hunting eventually.”
“I’m not sure you’d say that in winter.” Deline smirked at him, although she could guess easily enough what was going on in his head. They were leaving, which meant they were going to the capital. When they got there, everything could change. Continue reading →
Carrone was staring at Deline. She didn’t care; she had a whole pack to go through. “Seriously,” he complained, “why are we looking for a pebble in our packs? Do you know how long I’ve been carrying this pack?”
“Possibly as long as I’ve been carrying mine?”
“Probably longer! What are you looking for?”
“Something larger than a pebble that isn’t something you packed,” she reiterated. “Carrone, I will go through your whole pack myself if I have to.”Continue reading →
Deline shifted, not quite meeting Carrone’s gaze. “How do you think you know anything about this?” she snarled, the first thing that came to mind. What was she doing, anyway?
“I’m a hunter, Deline, I think I know about being hunted just a little bit. For starters, let’s get back to the – the place before we finish this argument, shall we? In case our friend gets loose or someone else is looking for you.”
Deline set her jaw and nodded. “Back,” she agreed. She stalked towards the cabin, barely minding things like cleaning up her trail. What did it matter, when the Haloran spy was probably going to tell the Talon exactly where she’d been, anyway? And then the Talon would put two and two together and-Continue reading →