the smuggler’s bible


Ramshackle stairs descend, swaying and creaking like an old ship’s timbers. Alda shifts her step slightly to keep inside of the uneven spiral, deciding that if a joint bursts, at least she’ll have something to grab for.

Far, far below, she sees the pinprick glow of a single candle. This, she knows, is a trap. The foot tends to follow the eye. Given a diversion amidst all that dark, the hapless might stray by degrees toward stair edge and open void.

Alda closes her eyes, because if there was anything else to watch out for, they simply wouldn’t have bothered.