Chapter 12: A Daring Escape


“He’s fast”, said Chester, always the first to state the obvious.

“Where did he go?”, Sarah sounded concerned.

“Down there”, grumbled Jaha, “he knocked that table to one side – there’s a hole. I say we cover it back over and leave him down there”.

“…and what good will that go us?”, queried Kazin, in his usual, calm voice, “it certainly doesn’t help us escape now, does it?”.

Even in the shadows, I could see Jaha’s face glowing red as his anger once again flared up. It would seem the incident with the bat was now forgotten, and Jaha’s dislike for our serene mage had returned.
To resolve the situation, I decided we should vote on our next step.

“All in favour of following Slade, say ‘aye'”.

“AYE!”, came the response, along with a slight grumble.

“Then it’s settled, down we go!”

“It looks dark down there, maybe I can light it up with a little magic”, Sarah pondered.

“Okay Sarah, you can go first”. I would have expected her to object, but she put up no arguments and began to climb down the hole. One at a time, we followed her. Chester went last, and even then with some difficulty!

“What took you so long?”, the rat snapped at us.

We said nothing, as Slade turned and began marching down the dim tunnel. As Sarah walked by, the light from her spell reflected off something shiny in the rock. I had a quick look and found a lump of some kind of metal, very much like the one I’d found earlier at the tower. Stashing the find in my pocket, I moved on with the rest of my force.

The tunnel was not long, and we soon reached a rickity old ladder. Chester muttered something under his breath about ‘centaurs not being designed for these sorts of things…’, clearly annoyed at the feats we were forcing his equestrian body to perform. With a small struggle, we all made it up the ladder and found ourselves in a store room in the castle of King Galam.

I sat down on a barrel for a moment, only then realising just how famished I was… not to mention thirsty.

“Since we missed the gourmet delights of the prison menu tonight, we should see what we can scrounge up around here”, Slade suggested.

It must have been the main storeroom for the castle’s kitchens, because we found nothing less than a feast there. If only all the meals during our adventure had been so delicious!

Our merriment was short-lived however, as our banquet was cut short by a voice resounding through the tunnel:

“The prisoners have escaped!”