Friday, September 7, 2012

Scout's Honor - Chapter 45


< Chapter 44                                                                                               Chapter 46 >
Darkness yawns below our hero as he takes a leap of faith from the bow of an airship!

            Night-blinded by the lanterns on deck, I saw nothing but darkness below me.  I had no way to judge how far out I'd jumped.  Was it too far?  Not far enough?  Had the Pauline moved?
            With a muted thump, I landed on the Pauline's gasbag.  Grabbing the first line I found, I squirmed under the line.  Once secured, I canceled Boost.  My muscles ached, but I didn't black out.
            "David?" called Princess Callan.
            "Yes, Highness," I called back, "it's me.  Please ask Nist to move away from the other ship as soon as possible!"
            Minutes later, Callan and Raoul helped me onto the deck.  Callan swept into a tight hug.
            "I knew you'd come for us, David!" she said.
            "It is the man's job, Callan," Raoul said, petulance sliding across his face.
            "That it is, Highness," I said.  "And I expect that job to get a lot easier with Princess Callan safely aboard a friendly airship!"
            "Quite right, my boy," Tristan said.  "I'd be honored to transport their Highnesses safely home!"
            Smoothing his face into a smile, Raoul said, "A generous offer, good sir!  I will gladly accept, provided you agree to return Princess Callan, first."
            "No," Callan said.  Turning to Tristan, she continued, "I ask only that you return me to Beloren."
            "Highness," I said, "why-"
            "Have you forgotten the trog army?" Callan asked.  "They were but two days march from the Mordanian border.  Even now, they could be slaughtering my people!  I will not turn my back on them!"
            Tristan asked, "Why stop in Beloren, your Highness?"
            Callan responded, "I need an audience with Martin Bane!"

What could the princess want with her kidnapper?  Find out in Chapter 46, coming Monday!