The Truth Dancer by Florian Armas

The Truth Dancer by Florian Armas

Author:Florian Armas [Armas, Florian]
Language: eng
Format: epub
Published: 2019-03-11T22:00:00+00:00

Chapter 11

With a last glance back, Laval opened the Rosas Gate, and ventured outside the castle’s garden. Mid autumn came with fog down from the Pebble Mountain and rain pouring over the city until every street became a river. After each storm, everything was fresh, as if the rain had washed the old stones. This time the street was almost empty; it had just stopped raining, and the Autumn Fair had ended a few days ago. The setting sun was shining over the land through some gaps in the clouds, flooding the land with vivid colors. Dressed again like a page, he walked at leisure until he was sure that no one was interested on his presence in the street. His pace grew faster, but not by much. He had arranged with Albert that he would leave the palace alone and incognito, without using the main gate. All other options required a guard, and as he could use only Albert, Randal would know that he had left the palace.

Walking behind a tall man who seemed to be a stranger, Laval left the Castle Street at the second intersection although the shortest road to Katharina’s house was to go straight and turn right at the end of the street. Instead, he turned left and went toward the market. Albert was waiting for him there. At the gate of the market, their eyes met, but neither of them reacted. Laval entered the market and took a short alley to the market’s heart. Albert followed him soon after. Lazily, both navigated the sprawling market, glancing left and right at the merchandise on display, like everyone else. While this was not his first sortie outside the castle, and he did not trust most of his guards he received from Tymon, in a strange way Laval felt almost naked without them – the memory of the last terrible hunt still fresh in his mind – but at the same time, he was terrified he would turn a corner and there they would be, sent by Tymon to escort him back to the palace and end everything now, before it had begun. To calm his mind, he tarried for a moment to buy a red ringeli fruit - it was the right period, and the bitter-sweet scent made him bite hard through the thin red peel. The flavor filled his mouth, and he smiled, finishing the ringeli in two more bites. A woman bumped into him, turning and mumbling an apology. She stopped mid-sentence as she saw the child she had just knocked into.

“Wake up, child,” she rasped, and turned her head away from him.

Silent, Laval whirled past her. Alone and unprotected, he had never realized before how crowded and frantic the market could be. Slowed by the agitated swarm of people, he tried to calm his breathing. It was uneven, and not because of his speed. The thought of what he planned to do with his new friends calmed and thrilled him at the same time.


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