the smuggler’s bible


They leave with a stub of a wax and a short wick. The light falls against dark tiles, breaks and scatters throughout the halls. As a final precaution at the side gate, they use the last of the candle to tallow the hinges, then pull together and burst into the warm night of the garden.

So close, now. They sprint through the foliage past the den of his hunters, sleeping under the new moon. Above them, a shadow moving against starlight. Gisela hears a shriek and beating wings, feels the trailing hand slip from her grasp.

She doesn’t turn back.