Saturday, March 3, 2018

Page 1573

((Triple Saturday -- Page 3 of 3))
“While, yes, I was technically a Ranger, too,” said Germal, “it was really Koh who did all the heavy lifting. I mostly just provided operational support for him.”

“I... see.” The man seemed like he was trying to suck his own lips into his face as he deliberated on his next words. “Then, ah... w-would it be too much to ask for his help here?”

“Oh, I’m sure he’d love to. Right, Koh?”

Koh snorted strongly enough to kick up a cloud of dust in front of him.

“Don’t be a surly bore,” said Germal. “The man is asking nicely for your help.”

Koh glanced between the two men, then at Durendia, then back at Germal.

“Of course, we’ll take her with us,” said Germal.

Koh stood up.

Germal looked back at the unnamed man. “Lead the way.”

“Oh, thank you so much, Master Koh.”

The dog returned a calm, low woof, and they all began walking.

Germal and the stranger kept talking, but Durendia wasn’t really paying attention anymore. They were mentioning a lot of names and places that she didn’t recognize, and she soon found herself much more interested in the snow. It was picking up. She wondered if there would be enough to build a snowman soon. Or a snowdog, maybe. It would be fun to make a second Koh, she thought.

When they arrived at their apparent destination, her attention returned to the situation at hand.

The enormous hole in the forest was difficult to miss. Felled and splintered trees littered the path forward, so Germal helped Durendia onto Koh’s back in order to protect her feet. It was fun. Koh moved so smoothly over the rough terrain that she had no trouble keeping her balance. She remembered trying to ride a horse once before and finding it not nearly this easy.

“Here’s where we ran into trouble, Master Koh.”

The sundered pathway split into several narrower ones. Some of them even looked blocked by more fallen trees ahead, but it was difficult to tell with only the moon and a few flashlights in the darkness.

“Some of our men have gone ahead, but from what we can tell so far, it’s all a mess. We suspect there was some sort of battle in this particular area.”

Koh lifted his nose and sniffed audibly.

“That is probably a safe bet,” said Germal. “Some of these trees aren’t just knocked down but also pitch black as well. That would suggest fire or lightning, which matches what happened to the town. And the direction that they fell also suggests that the fight was moving away from Orobell. Good work, soldier.”

“Th-thank you, sir.”

Koh ambled forward, not choosing from any of the branching paths and instead simply going straight ahead into the line of trees that were still standing. It grew pitch dark under the canopy of leaves overhead, and Durendia could hear the others following behind.

No comments:

Post a Comment