“. . . I don’t know what you will face on that ship, but you must be prepared to either fight your way out of there or sacrifice your lives.” Grania said this directly to Sean and he looked down at his feet.
He knew she was right. . . In the end, if Maureen wasn’t free, if she were used as a cudgel to beat Grania, then the fighting and dying weren’t worth it. Sean took a deep breath and met Grania’s eyes without flinching. He would make sure it was worth it.
“Aye, my lady Grania, we understand.”
Sean felt Dubhal put a hand on his shoulder.
“Although, we’ll do our best to avoid it, if it’s all the same to you,” Dubhal said, humor coloring his voice. He motioned to the sack slung across his back. “I have a few extra… surprises if things start to unravel on the Excelsior.”
“I like the way you think, Master Dubhal. I shall leave that to you, then.” Grania turned to the rest of the crew. “You all have your orders, then. Let’s break camp. Phalen is expecting us in the harbor before the sun sets – make haste. . . ”
D: Oh man, I am awesome.
A: You have your moments.
D: No, seriously, I have smoke bombs. I rock!
A: 1300 years of life experiences, culture and wisdom, and that’s all you can say: “I have smoke bombs. I rock!”??
D: What’s your point?
A: Nothing. You’re the one who likes to remind me that you impersonate a god, but it’s the smoke bombs that really get you going?
D: Okay, okay, I’m 1300 years old, I impersonate gods and I get to save the day with smoke bombs. What part of that doesn’t spell awesome?
A: . . .
D: You wrote me.
. . . No one had remained to guard the hold, and Sean helped Maureen up the last rungs of the ladder. His arm around her shoulders, he was about to guide her to the side where their dinghy was tied when a terrific sound and wave of noise rocked the boat. The force of it pushed them to their knees.
When they looked up, smoke was billowing from what was once the stateroom. The wind was rising and in the clearing smoke, Sean spied a single cloaked figure standing at the ragged hole, highlighted by the weak fires left in the wake of his destruction. Sean stared at Dubhal, entranced. Even Maureen was gaping – the entire ship seemed to stop, hold its breath and wait. . .