the smuggler’s bible

Artemis

The sound of pipes floats through the glade. Beneath the melody, a rat-tat-tattle of drumbeat ripples the pools of dew which have gathered on the leaves and catch the moonlight to glitter and dance like candle wicks.

The man has walked for hours, stopping only to leave offerings beneath root and fern for the dryads, begging to see their mistress. Now he has found her, Artemis, reclining on a couch of green saplings.

“You’ve had a tough night, so go ahead and ask,” she says. “But if gods could make guarantees—well, you wouldn’t be in this position, would you?”