A’ris woke before dawn, having slept less than an hour. The sounds of shouting from the room below echoed up the stairs and she sprang to her feet in alarm. Unable to make out what was being said, she shoved herself into her clothes, grabbed the dead assassin’s gun and searched for her tote. Once it was secured around her neck, she crept into the hall and moved along the wall planks to the edge of the stairs in her bare feet.
A man’s voice rose above two others. The Monk and Yacob were downstairs as well. “If ya refuse to hand her over, with all the belongings she came here with, what’s left of this town will be brought to the ground. D’ya understand this?” the stranger hissed.
“You won’t find anyone in Calypso willing to carry that order out. Do you understand this?” It was the Monk, speaking in harsh response, his young voice strained and cracked with emotion.
“Aye, so be it. But they will come for the Sprite. They already be coming for her as we speak.”
– Copyright Trish Marie Dawson, The Dry Lands (Hutch & A’ris)