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Andrzej Sapkowski - 04 - The Tower of the Swallow - Ebook download as PDF File .pdf), Text It is said that an evil sorceress held this Cirilla captive in a magical tower Andrzej Sapkowski - [Witcher 03] - Time of Contempt (v) ( Epub). The Witcher returns in this action-packed sequel to Baptism of Fire, in the New York Times bestselling series that inspired The Witcher video games. All Books · The Last Wish · The Sword of Destiny · Blood of Elves · Time of Contempt · Baptism of Fire · The Swallow's Tower · Lady of the Lake.
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There Is No Preview Available For This Item. This item does not appear to have any files that can be experienced on cittadelmonte.info Andrzej Sapkowski - [Witcher 05] - The Tower of Swallows - tr David French (v ) (epub) - dokument [*.epub] cittadelmonte.info cittadelmonte.info Begin Reading. Read online The Tower of the Swallow Buy and read online The Tower of the Swallow Download The Tower of the Swallow ebook, pdf, djvu.
I can give you everything you desire, said the fairy. Wealth, a crown and sceptre, fame, a long happy life. I do not desire wealth or fame, a crown or sceptre, the witcher replied. I desire a horse that is black as night and as fast as the wind. And I desire a sword that is sharp and as bright as a moonbeam. I want to ride at night on my black horse; I want to defeat the powers of Evil with my bright sword.
Outside, however, she stumbled. She leaned against the door frame. It is she exhaled sharply, it is cold! Its nearly freezing. It is winter already? How long have I been in bed? Exactly six days. Today is the fifth day of October. But it seems this October will be unusually cold. The fifth of October? How can it be? Two weeks? What is two weeks? It does not matter. She shrugged her shoulders. Maybe Im wrong Or maybe not. Tell me what stinks here so much? Muskrat, beaver, mink, otter and other tanning skins.
Even a hermit has to make a living. Where is my horse? In the pen. The black mare greeted them with a loud snort and Vysogotas goat echoed with a bleat, which echoed his great displeasure of having to share his accommodation with another tenant.
Ciri embraced the horses neck and patted him, stroking his mane. Where is my saddle and saddle bags? He did not protest, make any comment or express any opinion. He was silent, leaning on his cane.
He did not move when she gasped while trying to raise her saddle, did not flinch when she staggered under the weight and fell awkwardly on the floor covered with straw and released a loud moan.
He did not approached her or help her up. He watched carefully. Well, Ciri said through clenched teeth, while pushing the mare who was trying to stick his nose through the neck of her shirt. Its clear. But I have to leave here, dammit! I have to go! She massaged her face with her hands while sitting on the straw beside the saddle.
As far away as possible. Vysogota nodded, as if the answer satisfied him, clarified everything and left no doubt. Ciri rose with effort. She did not even attempt to pick up the saddle and harness.
She check to see if the mare had hay and oats in the pen then began to rub his back and sides with straw. Vysogota waited in silence and lived to see. The girl stumbled onto the pole supporting the roof and turned white as a sheet. Without a word he gave her his cane. Nothings wrong. Im just Just dizzy, because you are sick and weak as a newborn. Lets go back. You have to lie down. About sunset, having previously slept for a few hours, Ciri came outside again.
Vysogota, who had just returned from the river, met her at the hedge of hazel bushes. Do not go far from the hut, he warned. Firstly, youre too weak Secondly, it is dangerous. All around are bottomless swamps and endless forests of reeds. You do not know the trails; you could get lost and drown in the marsh. But, she said pointing at the bag he carried on his shoulder, you know the trails and of course you travel them whenever you want. It seems to me that the swamps are not so dangerous.
You tan hides for a living that is clear. Kelpie, my mare had oats and I do not see a field around here in sight. We eat chicken and barley porridge. And bread, real bread, not cakes. I do not think that you trapped it. So that means there is a village around here. A faultless deduction, he admitted quietly. That means I have received rations from the nearest settlement. The nearest, but it does not mean that it is close.
It lies on the edge of the marsh. The marsh borders a river.
I exchange my furs for food which they bring me in a boat. Bread, flour, salt, cheese and sometimes chicken or rabbit. Occasionally news. There were no questions, so he continued. Horsemen have arrived in the village. The first time they threatened the peasants with fire and sword, if anyone helped you or hid you. The second time, they promised a reward for finding your corpse. Your pursuers think that youve succumbed to your injuries and are lying out here dead somewhere in the forest of fallen trees or brushwood.
And they will not rest until they find my dead body, she muttered darkly. I know this well. They must have proof that I am dead. Without this proof they will not give up. They will search everywhere. And eventually they will come here They are very interested in you, he said.
Even I would say they are interested in an extraordinary way She pursed her lips. Do not be afraid. I will go before they find me. I will not expose you to danger Do not be afraid. Why do you assume that Im afraid? What reason is there to be scared? Nobody comes here and nobody will be able to find you here. But if you poke your snout out of the reeds, you will come face to face with your pursuers.
In other words, she threw back her head in a gesture of defiance. I have to stay here. Is that what you meant? Youre not a prisoner. You can leave whenever you like. Rather, whenever you are able. But you can also stay here and wait. The time will come when your pursuers will get. They always get discouraged, sooner or later. You can believe me. I know this. Her green eyes sparkled when she looked at him.
At the end of the day, the hermit said quickly, while shrugging his shoulders and avoiding her gaze, do what you want. I repeat, I will not keep you here.
For now I will not go, she snorted. I feel weak And the sun is setting And I do not know the trails. So lets get back to the hut. Im freezing. You said Ive been here for six days. Is that true? Why would I lie? Dont fret. Im trying to calculate the days I escaped I was hurt The day of the equinox. The twenty third of September. If you want to count according to the elves, the last day of Lammas.
It is not possible. She cried and moaned while touching her face. Vysogota looked on calmly. I do not know, he replied calmly. But I used to be a doctor, Ciri. It has been a long time, but I can still distinguish a wound inflicted in a few hours to a wound that has been untreated for four days.
I found you on September twenty seventh, thus you were wounded on the twenty sixth. The third day of Velen, if you prefer to count as the elves do. Three days after the equinox. I was wounded the day of the equinox. It is not possible, Ciri. You must have mistaken the date. Absolutely not. You are probably using an out-dated calendar, hermit.
As you wish. Is it so important? Not at all. Three days later, Vysogota took out the last of the stitches. He had every reason to be please and proud of his work the stitching was straight and clean, there was no fear of dirt being tucked in the wound. The surgeons satisfaction was only marred by watching Ciri sta r at the scar in gloomy silence, trying different angles with a mirror and trying to hide it, without success, by throwing her hair over her cheek.
The scar had disfigured here. A fact is a fact. There was nothing she could do. Nothing could help her pretend that it was not there. Still red and swollen like a rope, dotted with the traces of the sting of the needle and marked with the signs of the thread, the scar looked truly macabre.
It was possible that the condition might show a slow or rapid improvement. However, Vysogota knew there was no possibility that the scar would disappear or cease to disfigure her. Ciri was feeling much better, to Vysogotas amazement and satisfaction and no longer spoke of leaving. He took the black mare, Kelpie from his the pen. Vysogota knew that in the north, Kelpie was a sea monster that could according to superstition take the form of horse, a dolphin or even a beautiful woman, but in its real form it looked a lot like sea weed.
Ciri saddled the mare and rode around the pen and hut, after which she returned Kelpie to the pen to keep company with the goat, and Ciri returned to the hut to keep Vysogota company.
She started to help him probably out of boredom when working with the skins. While he separated the otter skins into size and tone, she divided the muskrats in backs and bellies and stretched the skins over a table that they had brought into the house. Her fingers were extremely nimble.
It was while during this task a strange conversation occurred between them. You do not know who I am. You could not even imagine who I am. She repeated this trivial statement several times and it bothered him a bit. Of course she fail to notice his annoyance, it would have lowered him to betray his feelings to a brat like that. No, he could not let it happen, but neither could he betray the curiosity that devoured him.
A curiosity that was unfounded, because he could have easily guessed who she was. In the days of Vysogotas youth, gangs were not uncommon. The years have passed, but it could not eliminate the magnetic force with which these gangs attracted a girl eager for adventure and strong emotions.
Which often led to their undoing. The brats who came out of it with a scar on their face could say that they had been lucky.
For the less lucky they could expect torture, the gibbet, the axe or the stake. Ha, from the time of Vysogota only one thing has changed progressive emancipation. The band attracted not only the young males but also crazy girls who preferred swords, horses and the unbridled life than needles, dishes and waiting for suitors.
Vysogota did not tell her directly, but gave her a sufficiently clear note that he knew with whom he was dealing with. To make her aware that if there was a mystery here it was surely not this girl a girl who was on the road with a gang of bandit teens and had miraculously escaped from a trap.
A disfigured brat trying to surround herself with a halo of mystery But do not worry, Ill go soon. I will not exp ose you to danger. Vysogota had had enough.
What sort of danger? Even if your pursuers found you here, which I doubt, what harm could befall me? Assisting runaway criminals is punishable, but not to a hermit since he is not aware of the world. My privilege is to accommodate everyone who comes into my hermitage. Well, you say I do not know who you are. How could I know, a hermit, who you are, if you committed a crime and why the law is chasing you?
And what law? I do not even know whose law applies in this region and who the representatives of this law are.
I do not care and it has never interested me, Im a hermit. He realised he had gone too far. But he would not budge. Her green eyes were full of rage and pierced him like knives. Im a poor hermit.
Dead to the world and their work. I am a simple man, uneducated, ignorant of worldly affairs He exaggerated.
Do you take me for a fool? Well do not think that I am so stupid. A simple hermit. When you were gone I looked around your hut. I looked into that corner covered by the curtains. Where you have many books of science on the shelves, uh, a simple and uneducated man? Vysogota threw an otter skin onto the pallet. They belonged to a local tax collector, he waved his hand carelessly. When he died, the villagers did not know what to do with them and brought them to me.
They are land registers and accounting books. Youre lying. Ciri winced and rubbed her scar. You are clearly lying to me! He did not answer, pretending to evaluate the next skin tone. You think, she continued, that because you have a white beard, wrinkles and a hundred years on the neck that you can effortlessly fool an innocent girl, huh?
Well Ill tell you the first duck to pass through here may have been deceived. But Im not a duck. He raised his eyebrows in silent but provocative question. She did not let him wait too long. I, dear hermit, I have studied in places where there were many books, and with some of the same title that are on your shelves. I know many of those titles.
Vysogota raised his eyebrows even more. She looked him straight in the eye. Incredible tales, she said, you told the ragged tomboy, the dirty orphan, the thief or bandit you found in the reeds with the smashed face.
I went over and over again, the works that bear the titles Materia medica and Herbarius, which is the same one you have on your shelf.
I also know what the ermine cross on a red shield embossed on the backs of your books mean. It is a sign that the books were made at the University of Oxenfurt. She paused, still staring intently. Vysogota was silent; he struggle to make sure his face did not betray anything. So I think, Ciri said, throwing back her head in a move that was characteristic of her, proud and somewhat violent, that you are not a simpleton or a hermit.
That you did not leave voluntarily from the world, but you ran away from it. And you hide here in the wilds, masked between the impassable swamps. If so, Vysogota smiled, then our luck has joined in a very strange way, my well-read maiden. Destiny has put us together in mysterious ways. At the end of the day, you too, Ciri, are hiding. At the end of the day, you too, Ciri, deftly weave around you a veil of appearances. Im old and full of suspicions and mistrust, embittered by age Towards me?
Towards the world, Ciri. A world where appearances take the deceptive mask of truth to expose other truths, but is false as well as attempting to deceive. To a world in which the shield of the University of Oxenfurt is painted on the doors of brothels. To a world where a ragged bandit is knowledgeable, wise and may even be of noble birth, who is an intellectual and scholar who reads Roderick de Novembre and knows the seal of the Academy.
Against all appearances.
Against the fact that they themselves carry another mark. A criminal tattoo, a red rose etched near the groin. Youre right, her lips tightened and her face flushed so intense that the line of the scar was almost black. Youre a bitter old man. And a musty busybody. On my shelf, behind the curtain, he said with a nod, is the Aen Nog Mab Taedhmorc, a collection of short storied and Elven prophecies.
In there is a story that fits this situation and conversation. It is the story of the old raven and the swallow. Just like you, Ciri, Im a scholar, so I would like to recite a short passage, I hope my memory does not disappoint. The raven, as I remember, accuses the swallow of rashness and inappropriate levity:.
He stopped and leaned his elbows on the table and placed his chin onto his extended fingers. Ciri shook her head, straightened up and looked at him defiantly. She finished the poem. The embittered, suspicious old man, Vysogota said after a moment of silence, apologizes to the educated maiden. The old raven, who sense fraud and deceit everywhere, begs forgiveness from the swallow, whose only fault is that it is young and full of life. And pretty Now youre raving, she grumbled, covering the scar on her face in an unconscious movement.
You can save the compliments. They will not mend the scar left on my skin. Dont think that is how you are going to win my trust. I still do not know who you really are. Why you lied to me about the days and dates. And why you looked between my legs when the wound was on my face. And if you were limited to just looking.
This time she managed to upset him. How dare you, kid? I could be your father! My grandfather, she corrected him icily. Or my great-grandfather. But youre not. I do not know who you are. But surely not the person you are pretending to be. I am the one who found you in the swamp, nearly froze to the bone, with a black mask instead of a face, unconscious, filthy and dirty. I am the one who brought you home but did not know who you were and had the right to imagine the worst. Who cured you and lay you on a bed.
Gave you medicine when you were burning with fever. Who took care of you. I washed you. Very carefully. Also in the vicinity of the tattoo. Ciri calmed down, but her eyes did not lose the challenging and insolent look.
In this world, she snapped, there are those with deceptive appearances that put on a mask of truth, as you yourself have said. I also know a little about how this world works. You saved me, treated and cured me. Thank you. I am gratefully for your Kindness.
But I know there is no kindness without. Self interest and hope of a favour, he finished with a smile. Yes, I know. I am a man of the world, who knows the world as well as you, Ciri. Young women who have been deprived of everything that has any value. If you are unconscious or too weak to defend yourselves, they usually give free rein to lust and appetite, often depraved or unnatural.
Is it not true? Nothing is as it seems, Ciri replied, blushing again. An accurate statement, said the hermit, while adding another skin to the appropriate lot.
And how inevitably it leads to the conclusion that we, Ciri, we know nothing about each other. We know only the appearances and they lie.
He waited a moment, but Ciri did not hasten to say anything. Although we both have succeeded in making a preliminary inquiry, we still dont know anything. I do not know who you are, you do not know who I am This time he deliberately waited.
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She looked at him and her eyes burned with the question he was expecting. Her eyes flashed when she asked: Who will start? If someone had crept up to the dark hut with the sunken, overgrown with moss roof and if they looked inside, in the firelight of the hearth they would have seen an old man with a white beard hunched over bundles of skins.
They would have also seen a girl with ashen-hair with an ugly scar on her cheek, a scar that did not fit at all with the green eyes as big as a childs. But nobody could see. The hut was lost in the endless field of reeds, in the middle of a swamp where no one dared to enter. My name is Vysogota of Corvo. I was a doctor, a surgeon. I was an alchemist. Later I worked as a researcher, a philosopher and an ethicist. I was a professor at the University of Oxenfurt. I had to flee from there after publishing some work that was considered impious and heretical.
Then, fifty years ago that charge carried the death penalty. I went into exile. My wife did not want to immigrate, so she left me. While on the run I stopped in the far south, in the Nilfgaardian Empire. I settled down after a while and became a professor of philosophy and ethics at the Imperial Academy in Castell Graupian. I served in that position. Then history repeated I had to flee after the publication of a certain treatise Which by the way, dealt with the totalitarian regime and the criminal nature of the wars of occupation, but officially my work and I was branded as clerical heresy and metaphysical mysticism.
An investigating showed that I was a lackey of expansive and revisionist clergy circles that were effectively ruling the Nordling Kingdoms. It seemed like a grim joke, considering that these priestly circles had twenty years before issued me with a death sentence for atheism. In fact, it had been a long time since the priests in the North had lost their influence, but in Nilfgaard they refused to acknowledge it. Combining mysticism and politics were prosecuted and punished without mercy.
Today, judging from the perspective of years, I think if I had humbled myself and had shown remorse, Im certain the matter would have been settled and I would have just fallen into disgrace with the emperor without having to resort to drastic means.
But I was outraged. I was sure of my truth, It was timeless and superior to any policy. I felt an injustice. I was unjustly wronged by the ruling tyrannies. I had established active contacts with dissidents seeking to overthrow the tyranny. Before I could realise I was thrown into prison with my new friends. Some of them, when the executioner showed them his tools, identified me as the chief ideologue of the underground movement. But before I was executed, I was saved by the imperial grace and I was sentenced into exile under threat of immediate execution of the original sentence if I ever returned to imperial lands.
I then got mad at the world, with the kingdoms, empires and universities, with the dissidents, civil servants and lawyers. With colleagues and friends who, as if by magic, did not want to know me. With my second wife, who similar to the first, thought that her husbands problems were reason enough for divorce. With my children, I gave up.
I became a hermit. Here in Ebbing, in the swamps of Pereplut. I took over the hut where a hermit used to live. With all the bad luck I had, Nilfgaard annexed Ebbing, so before I could settle in, I found myself again in imperials territory. I had no desire nor the energy to make another journey and so I decided to hide. Imperial verdicts are never time-barred, even when the Emperor who issued it is long dead, and the current emperor has had little reason to recall it.
The death sentence remains in force, as is the custom and law in Nilfgaard. Sentences for high treason do not expire and are not subject to amnesty. At the coronation of every new emperor, everyone is pardoned who was denounced by his predecessor except for traitors. Therefore it makes no difference to me who sits on the throne if I violate the decision of the court to exile me and if I am arrested, my head will fall on the scaffold.
So you see, dear Ciri, we are both in a similar situation. What is ethics? I knew, but I have forgotten. The science of morality. The rules of customary behaviour, nobility, benevolence and honesty. From the heights of good which elevates the human soul to morality and righteousness. And from the depth of evil which brings it down to wickedness and immorality The heights of good! Dont make me laugh, or youll make my scar open up again.
You had the devils own luck, that they didnt manage to send a bounty hunter, such as You learned the depth of evil. To hell with your ethics, Vysogota of Corvo.
It is not the wicked and immoral people who sink into the abyss, no! Oh, no! There are the bad, but determined and there are those who are decent, honest and noble, but clumsy, hesitant but full of scruples.
Thank you for your teachings, he said jokingly. Believe me, even if you live for a century, it is never too late to learn something new. Truly, it is always helpful to hear from mature people who have experienced the world. Laugh, she shook her head. Laugh while you can, because now it is my turn. Now Ill entertain you with a story. Ill tell you what happened to me. And when Im finished, well see if you still want to joke.
If someone had crept up to the hut in the swamp after dark, and looked through a crack in the shutters and saw into the room, he would have seen in the dim light a white-bearded old man intently listening to an ashen-haired girl sitting on a stump by the fire. He would she that she speaks slowly, as if it was hard to find words, rubbing her cheek that was distorted by a scar nervously, and intertwined with long moments of silence, tells the story of her fate.
A story about teaching she received that proved to be all false and misleading. On the promises made to her that had not been kept. A story about doom, where she learned to believe, but was shamefully betrayed. The fact that every time she was beginning to hope for a change for the better, she was subjected to humiliation. Humiliation, injustice and pain. The fact that those who she trusted and loved, betrayed her, did not come to her aid when she was threatened with violation, suffering and death.
The councils, that according to people should be true to their ideals, failed whenever they wanted to build and thus proved to be useless. The help, friendship and love of those in which support and friendship had never been looked for to say nothing about love. But no one could see or hear. The hut with the sunken roof was enveloped in an impenetrable fog in a swamp, where no one dared to go.
When a young girl enters adolescence, dreams examine hitherto inaccessible areas, which are represented by a hidden chamber As the girl approaches the fateful spot, she has to climb a spiral staircase, and in dreams those stairs typically mean sexual experiences. She passes over the stairs to a small locked door, which has a key in the lock A small locked room in dreams often means the vagina, the turn of the key in a lock symbolizes the sex act.
The west wind ushered in a night-time thunderstorm. The purple-black sky cracked with lines of lightning and exploded with persistent rumbles of thunder. A downpour began, pelting the dusty road, roofs, and dirt smeared windows with drops as thick as oil. The strong wind continued and soon drove the rain and the storm somewhere far beyond the lightning blazing horizon. And then the dogs started barking. Hooves were drumming, weapons rattling. A wild hooting and whistling woke the sleeping villagers, making their hair stand on end.
They jumped up hastily and locked doors and windows with iron bars. Sweaty hands clutched axes and pitchfork handles. They clasped them firmly. And yet helplessly. Terror, terror was flying through the village. Hunters or the hunted? Cruel and insane with rage or fear?
Will they dash through without slowing the horses? Or will the night be illuminated with the light of burning thatch and fire? Hush, hush, child Mama, are they demons? Is this the Wild Hunt? Spectres from hell? Mama, Mama! Peace, peace, children. These are not demons, not devils. They are people. The dogs barked. A gale was blowing. Horses whinnied and horseshoes pounded. Through the village, through the night, to chase the riff-raff.
Hotsporn came riding over the crest of the hill, halted his horse and turned it sideways. He was careful, cautious, and did not take any chances, especially not when vigilance cost nothing. He was in no hurry to ride down the river, to the post office. He preferred to examine it thoroughly first. Neither horses nor carriages were at the station, there was only a small wagon, drawn by a pair of mules.
Writing could be seen on its canvas roof, though Hotsporn could not decipher it from the distance. But it did not smell like danger. Hotsporn knew how to sense danger. He rode on, over the entangled bank covered in scrub and willow bushes, then decided to drive his horse into the river. He galloped through, splashing water up over his saddle.
The ducks on the banks honked loudly and fled. Hotsporn drove the horse on and rode into the yard of the station through a gap in the fence. Now he could read the writing on the wagon canvas; it said: Master Alma Vera, Tattoo Artist. Each word of the inscription was painted a different colour and began with a particularly large, richly illuminated letter.
The front right wagon wheel was emblazoned with a mark: Dismount, said a voice from behind him. Get on the ground, now! Hands off the hilt! They had surrounded him silently to the right was Asse in a black leather jacket, laced with silver threads to the left was Falka in a green suede jacket, with feathers in her beret.
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Hotsporn pulled down his hood and the scarf covering his face. Asse lowered his sword. I would have recognized you, but this black horse had me fooled!
That's a beautiful mare, Falka said enthusiastically, pushing the beret off her ear. As black and shiny as coal, not a hair lighter. And graceful! Oh, what a beauty! Well, I got her for just under a hundred florens. Hotsporn smiled carelessly. Where is Giselher? Asse nodded. Falka stared at the mare, spellbound, and patted her neck. When she galloped through the water she looked at Hotsporn with her large green eyes She was like the purest Kelpie! If you would have come from the sea instead of the river, I would've sworn this was a Kelpie.
Has Miss Falka ever seen a real Kelpie? Only once, in a picture. The girl's face suddenly clouded over. That would be a long story. Go inside. Giselher is waiting. Light filtered through the window and shone on a table. On that table sat Mistle, leaning back on her elbows and naked from the waist down, clothed in nothing but black stockings. Between her shamelessly spread legs knelt a lean, long-haired individual in a gray-brown coat.
That could be none other than Master Alma Vera, the tattoo artist, because he was just about to bite a colourful picture into Mistle's leg.
Come closer, Giselher motioned for Hotsporn to take an empty stool at the table where he sat with Spark, Kayleigh, and Reef. The latter two were dressed similarly to Asse in black calf leather jackets, which were littered with buckles, rivets, chains and other fanciful embellishments of silver.
They must have originally belonged to some craftsman, thought Hotsporn. If they liked something, the Rats would pay tailors, shoemakers and saddlers truly regal fees. Of course, they also simply stole people's clothing or jewellery, if something caught their eye. You found our message in the ruins of the old station? Ha, of course you did, otherwise you would not be here, yes. I must admit, you have come quickly. Because of his beautiful mare, interjected Falka. I bet it is fast!
I found your message. Hotsporn did not look away from Giselher. But what about mine? Has it reached you? Has it Well, in short We haven't had time. First, we got drunk and had to cut back for a while. And later, we had to go somewhere else Damn bastards, thought Hotsporn. In short, you have not executed the order? Excuse me, Hotsporn.
It did not fit But next time, oho! Kayleigh emphatically confirmed, although no one had asked him for a confirmation. Damn, irresponsible bastards. You got drunk. And then you had to go elsewhere. Elsewhere being where you found those unusual clothes, no doubt. Will you have a drink with us? No thank you. Or perhaps some of this? Giselher pointed to an ornate paint jar that stood between the jugs and tankards.
Hotsporn now knew whence came the strange glint in the eyes of the Rats and why their movements were so nervous and fast. First-class dust, assured Giselher. Will you take a pinch? Hotsporn cast an eloquent glance at a blood stain and a vanishing trail in the sawdust, which revealed the path a corpse had been dragged. Giselher noticed the look. That marks the death of the postmaster's servant, who wanted to act like a hero, he snarled. Until Spark made an example of him.
Spark let out a throaty laugh. You could see immediately that she was exhilarated by the powerful narcotic. I made an example of him, only so that blood gushed, she boasted. This is called terrorism! As usual, she was draped with jewellery she even had a small diamond ring in her nostrils.
She wore no leather, but instead a cherry-red brocade jacket with a pattern that was already becoming the latest fashion among wealthy youths. The same was true with the silk cloth wrapped around the head of Giselher. Hotsporn had even heard of girls who cut their hair like Mistle's.
That is called terrorism, he repeated thoughtfully, still staring at the trail of blood on the floor. And the postmaster? His wife? Their son? No, no. Giselher frowned. Do you think we slaughter everyone? Where did you get that idea? We have temporarily locked them in the pantry. The station, as you can see, belongs to us now.
The Tower of Swallows
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