2 valnirs bane by ich du

2 valnirs bane by ich du

Author:ich du
Language: es
Format: mobi
Published: 2011-04-26T17:40:11+00:00


There Is No Good Decision Here

AFTER A HALF hour of utter darkness and silence it seemed safe to light torches, and all breathed sighs of relief. All except Oskar. The soothing effects of Gustaf's draught were wearing off and he began to look around uneasily and mutter about, 'The weight. The stone. There is no air.'

'Why ever did you decide to become a soldier, gunner?' grumbled Hals. 'Is there nothing you ain't afraid of?'

'I never meant to be a soldier,' murmured Oskar, slurring a little. 'I was m'lord Gottenstet's secretary. I wrote his correspondence for him. Read it too. Illiterate, the old fool. But one day...' he sighed and stopped.

The others waited for him to continue, but he seemed to have forgotten he was talking.

'One day, what?' asked Pavel, annoyed.

'Eh?' said Oskar. 'Oh... yes. Well, one day I was with m'lord as he was surveying some land he owned. He wanted to build a, a hunting lodge I think it was. And while the surveyor was using his plumb line and his measuring sticks to calculate distances and heights, I was guessing, and coming right almost to the foot. I picked out far away things that the surveyor needed his spyglass to make out. "Sigmar's lightning, lad," says Gottenstet. "Y've the making of a fine mortar man." And nothing would do but he must send me to the Artillery School at Nuln. Me! A scholar! I tried to tell him that though my eyes might be strong, my insides were weak, but he would have none of it.' He shrugged. 'Of course I didn't help matters by coming out top of my class. I liked the work: making the sightings, calling out the degrees, but on the field...' He shivered and hugged his shoulders. 'Did you ever see the fire from the sky? The thing with the mouths.' He looked around him suddenly as if waking up, his eyes widening as he took in the close stone walls, the low ceiling. 'The weight,' he murmured. 'Sigmar, save us, the weight. Can't breathe.'

Reiner grimaced, uncomfortable. 'Gustaf, give him another sip, will you?'

THE CORRIDOR SANK deeper and deeper into the mountains. Occasionally corridors branched off to the left and right, iron rails gleaming away into the shadows. Some were barricaded off and the party could see evidence of cave-ins behind them, but there was no confusion on which way to go. The deep tracks of the cannon's wheels always pointed the way.

A while later the iron rails began to sing, and soon after came a metallic rumbling. The company doused their torches and ducked into a side tunnel. After a moment a train of carts rolled by, full of ore, each pushed by a team of shackled slaves, their eyes dull. A Kurgan overseer reclined in the first cart, a lantern at his side.

Franz cursed under his breath once they'd passed. 'So many of them, and one of him. Couldn't they strangle him? Dump him down a shaft?'

'And then?' asked Reiner.

The boy grunted with frustration, but couldn't answer.


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