Monday, February 12, 2018

Page 1529 -- CLXIV.

((Double Monday -- Page 1 of 2))
Please!’ the reaper tried. ‘I-it all happened so quickly! I don’t understand what came over us! One minute we were talking--

“Calm yourself,” commanded Jercash. “I’m not going to kill you. For now. Later? Maybe. But you’ll have plenty of time to work on your excuses until then, so try not to lose your head, hmm? You’ll need it.”

The reaper fell silent at that, which was probably wise.

He made a small, round cage for Horace’s frozen head and his reaper.

Jercash didn’t like killing his own men, and he especially didn’t like killing their reapers. Servants could be released if they got too far out of line, but reapers were a precious commodity. Very difficult to replace and always risky to do so.

Still, he could hardly believe that Horace had tried to do something so stupid. Sure, it wasn’t terribly surprising that one of his subordinates would let their ambition get to them during these times of organizational turmoil, but it certainly was surprising how incompetently Horace had gone about it.

Jercash had only been half-joking when he’d chastised the reaper about their plan of attack. Horace didn’t have the most impressive mental fortitude, but the man should have known better than to attack Vanderberk’s reaper while Jercash was standing right there. He definitely should have known.

...What if he had?

Jercash stopped. He looked up and around, surveying the ruins of Orobell another time.

What if Horace had known better? What would that mean? Would that mean his goal hadn’t truly been to kill Vanderberk? What would it have been, then? To test Jercash? To get a glimpse of his power?

It was true that not many people knew what Jercash was capable of in combat. He much preferred it that way.


There was that paranoia again.

It wasn’t going to let up anytime soon, was it?

Chapter One Hundred Sixty-Four: ‘Assess and have forethought...’
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Hector never managed to learn his name, as apparently this Hun’Kui didn’t speak Mohssian like Eleyo did, and Hector had to struggle through trying to speak Hunese at Garovel’s instruction.

Eventually, the Hun’Kui man appeared to understand what was going on, at which point, Hector was more than prepared to be attacked, but the man surrendered immediately, instead.

That was how Hector passed the first round.

In the second chamber, he found Mr. Sheridan, already rifling through the treasure scattered around it. The man didn’t seem to have any idea what was going on, and Hector ended up explaining the situation to him, too.

“Fighting?” said Mr. Sheridan. “You fought someone before coming here?”

“Well, not technically, but sort of.” That brought a question to Hector’s mind. “But wait. Does that mean you didn’t fight someone?”

“Sure didn’t. Just been siftin’ through the goods here, tryin’ not to worry too much about how the hell I’m gonna get outta this place.”

Hector didn’t want to doubt the man, but he hadn’t known him very long at all and so had to wonder if that was really true. ‘Think he’s lying?’ he asked Garovel.

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