the smuggler’s bible


Hiro enters the old apartment block just before sunset, picking his way around chunks of concrete in the hallway. The handrails are piled at the foot of the stairs in a jumble that looks suspiciously like a death rune. Just to be safe, Hiro kicks the mess into a corner.

He sets up on the third floor beside a window and lights a candle on the sill. Then he opens a beer and waits. After dark, he hears the sounds start—far off, down in the basement, he thinks. Chanting in several low voices and spears being hammered against shields.