Saturday, May 5, 2018

Page 1728

((Triple Saturday -- Page 1 of 3))
With another flick of his wrist, Leo removed the rest of the encasing, and the man dropped to his hands and knees and started scurrying off.

“I guess you are pretty different from her, actually,” said Leo as he rejoined Hector in walking away from the scene.

Hector could only assume that he was still referring to Sai-hee.

“She prolly wouldn’ta let that guy live. She definitely wouldn’ta let him go.”

“I didn’t let him go.” Hector threw a glance back at the man in question, and Leo turned to look as well.

The guy hadn’t made it far. Iron shackles bound his ankles and wrists.

“The locals can figure out what to do with him,” said Hector.

Leo furrowed his brow. “If you were just gonna do that, then why’d you make me release him?”

“Because I didn’t soul-strengthen those shackles. But your coating would’ve been... unreasonably difficult for non-servants to remove him from.”

“...I woulda put him in shackles, if you’d asked.”

Hector knew that, but he still wouldn’t have been able to tell if such shackles would be soul-strengthened or not. He was on the verge of admitting as much until he thought that perhaps it would betray his age, somehow. Maybe old enough servants could tell if something was soul-strengthened just by looking at it. Hector had only assumed that Leo’s coating was soul-strengthened because of how laborious it had been to dig through at the warehouses, but he supposed now that that could’ve been a mistaken assumption.

Oh man.

He had to be careful. The more time he spent around this guy, the more likely it was that some small thing might make him realize that Hector was lying. After all, Hector didn’t know what he didn’t know. There was no telling how long this charade could be maintained.

Maybe a more lighthearted response was warranted here, then--something to ease the tension and hopefully not make Leo question him too much more.

“...Maybe I just wanted the credit for capturing him,” said Hector.

Leo seemed more uncertain than amused. “Was that... was that a joke ‘r somethin’?”

“...Yes, it was,” said Hector.

“Oh. Oh! Hah! Good one!”

Not the most satisfying reception, but Hector wasn’t about to complain, given the awful timing and context.

“Huh,” said Leo. “Somehow, I didn’t think you even had a sense of humor, man.”

“...Well, I do,” said Hector.

“In that case, I look forward to hearin’ more of it.”

Hector didn’t find that thought very comforting. He put it out of his mind, though. He had other things to worry about now. ‘I’m ready for that address now,’ he told Garovel.

The reaper relayed it to him. It was south of Gray Rock in a little town called Loxeville.

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