Shadow Wolf time! This is part of my weekly writing exercise, written raw and rough. The first story arc, Blade Breaker, can be found here. The first story of this arc, Red Fangs, can be found here. The previous week’s post can be found here.
Ironically, the Undercity of Myrrhn was more dangerous during the day; few people are compelled to venture there when the Undermarkets are closed and so some of the tunnels become havens for predatory creatures, especially those that left to hunt at night.
I led our little group through the dark and dank. I could scent anything that might be dangerous long before it would be upon us, even in a glorified sewer.
“How much further?” asked Zavra. “This place is worse than Cinder’s cellar.”
“Unless you wish to face the sun, I have to take us through these Sunken Isle passages to get between districts,” I answered. This was the part of the trek that worried me. The Sunken Isle tunnels were wild and dangerous, home to feral trolls and worse. “Unless of course, you’d like me to add an extra quarter day and go through The Portside Bowels.”
“Vradule save me!” muttered Zavra.
Berkhilda snorted, a little too loudly to be mistaken.
“Do you find my discomfort amusing, Vintul?” said Zavra. I hear her stop and turn.
“I do,” said Berkhilda, no mirth in her voice, now. “But I find your belief in the blood god moreso.”
“I assure you he is real, Vintul,” said Zavra.
“Ladies this is not the time for a theological debate,” I said, sniffing the air. “I think I can smell a troll’s lair nearby.”
“Do not call me Vintul, blood-slave,” snarled Berkhilda. “My name is Berkhilda Furisdottir.”
“Blood-slave… really?” laughed Zavra. “How you must hate what you are to use such a vile term.”
“It is what we are,” said Berkhilda quietly.
“I am no slave,” said Zavra. “Vradule sees to that. One day I you will see that embracing him is the only path to salvation Berkhilda.”
“I will take the gods of my true people over some forgotten Blood God,” said Berkhilda.
“You are fool!” said Zavra, her voice echoing down the passage.
“Quiet!” I said.
“Too wathe wiwwil man,” came a voice from the passage behind me.
I turned. An enormous humanoid filled the passage, waddling toward me. It was fat and pale with tiny, porcine eyes and a mouthful of needle-like teeth. One of its arms had a hook instead of a hand, while other held a cleaver. It was not a troll, but it wasn’t friendly. I drew my axe and hammer.
“Gonna fill ma bella!” chortled the creature.
“Oh, thank Furis!” said Berkhilda, relief evident in her voice. “I was getting sick of all this prattle!”