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.I didn’t know how much of that had been him and how much De Vorto.I didn’t want to think about that now.I was just glad that I hadn’t hurt him.Time to change the topic, and I gladly latched on to the question he had asked.“I don’t think this is the valley.I think this is some kind of a safe spot nearby.He has probably gone to scout ahead.How long has it been, 500 years?”“Not quite.More like 400.A little more,” Slick said, carefully warming one arm and shoulder, trying to dry himself out.“I think he went into stasis or magical sleep or whatever around 1599.”“Well, I’m not sure what’s happening around these parts.The place looks deserted enough.I was half afraid someone had built a mall over whatever hole he had concealed himself in.”Slick chuckled at that.“Yes, I thought about that myself, but decided not to raise it.”“Well, you are plenty rude to him.I didn’t think you watched what you said while talking to him.”He grimaced as he hurriedly pulled a smoking corner of his shirt away from the fire.“Well, you know how he is.And it wasn’t fun having him inside my head.Also, I think my defence mechanism to stress is to become more the comedian.”“More the bad comedian, you mean.”“You know, you’re plenty rude to me too,” he said, giving me a tragic look.I didn’t bother responding to that.I was warmer and it was almost nice inside the cave.I saw a fog rolling by the entrance, sizzling against the fire as it tried to work its way inside.We would be alright here.Actually, we’d be just fine.If De Vorto was right about that teleport being untraceable, we had just bought ourselves some safe time.And I really could use some time to just lay back and rest.I leaned against the rock and rested my head on a convenient ledge.“I’m getting some sleep, Slick.I suggest you do the same.Knowing De Vorto, we have some excitement lined up over the next few days.”Slick nodded and leaned back himself.He was staring into the distance, like he did ever so often.After a long, quiet moment, he called out.“Dew?”“Mmm.?”“You think we’ll get out of this alright?”I didn’t know what to say to him.I wish someone would answer that for me too.“I hope so, Slick.Sleep now.Good night.”After a long pause, “Good night.”Both of us took a long while to sleep that night though.I tried to tell myself that it was the sound of the rain and the fog sizzling on the fire that kept us awake.When I finally did sleep, I had nightmares of Papa Loon coming after me with his knife.CHAPTER 15Back to the BeginningThe chase is afootPursuers and fugitives unknownThe plot thickensQuestions still unansweredBut the end can always be tracedIf you start right at the beginningIt’s one of those nights of absolute darkness.The moon is nowhere to be seen and the clouds prevent even the starlight relieving the gloom.All beauty is lost in a swirl of dark greys that barely allow the naked eye to discern one detail from the other.AJ Silvus has no such problems though.His scape-enhanced sight allows him to see everything, including the dark, lithe form that makes its way towards him.Finally!Silvus can sense that Zyx is shielding from him.Whatever she is feeling or thinking, she doesn’t want him to know.He is irritated at the ploy, given how futile it is.He doesn’t break it down instantly, and waits for her to explain herself.She is his last aide at the Guild, and he cannot afford to lose her.Jimmy Sau was his right hand man and a big loss.That crazy elemental didn’t know just how much she had damaged his power base with her actions.Once this entire mess was done with, he would have to rebuild everything.Zyx walked up the last few steps to the huge man and looked at him with one of her practised, mischievous smiles.Silvus continued staring at her impassively.Any reaction at all would only result in more games, more wasting of time.The best ploy was always to stare her out.A few moments later, her smile slowly changed into a pout, moving slowly from sexy vixen to spoilt brat.“Can we get down to business now?” Silvus asked, his voice flat, not betraying any emotion.Zyx considered continuing with the charade for a moment, but then dropped the idea.Her features re-formed themselves into a plainer but far more efficient version of herself.“He’s here.I’ve managed to get a scape signature confirmation.It was the Free wordsmith, the girl.And he is with her.I am unable to get a lock on their exact position, but Skye it is.”“Good.We need to flush him out, then.What do you have planned?”Zyx looks at him, trying to read his dead eyes.“Silvus, you know that the CCC will shut down the Guild at the slightest infraction.We cannot afford to…”“I still am the Mastersmith, Zyx.You could try and acknowledge that when you speak to me [ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]