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Title: Leading The Way
Fandom: original
Character: original
Length: 351
Rating: G

In the dimness of the damp tunnel, lit only by the torches of foresighted guards, I looked at our company, and one thing was clear about them. Especially since Lady Zeria had pulled out a scissors to cut away her torn sleeve.
"Give me that scissors," I said. Lady Zeria stared at me as if I barked like a dog. I snatched them from her hand and turned to the princess. When I snatched her skirt, she blinked and did not object -- I suspect, more from surprise than accepting my purpose. I cut. And cut, and cut, all the way around, so that her skirt hung no farther than her knee. She meekly stepped out of the cloth, and I shoved it into her hands. "Carry it. Our footprints won't be that distinct, but that will."
Princess Casilde nodded. And then said, "Give me the scissors. I will get Lady Zeria's skirts while you plan."
I opened my mouth. And shut it. And handed her the scissors. And turned to my men to think of a plan.
Except that, come to think of it, there was little to do.
"We will stick to the main way, by the stream. At least that has to flow from somewhere."
"Underground lake," muttered Draik. I feigned to not hear. Moments later, with Lady Zeria burdened with both sets of skirts, we trudged on.
It was impossible to judge the time. It seemed hours on end of endless walking (I had to conceded that Lady Zeria at least did not complain) and then -- I had slogged for so long that when I blinked and realized there was light that was not ours, it had a glow enough to illuminate the tunnel. The stones were all yellow-brown. I hurried on. The waters still flowed, except where snags of deadwood lay, but around a corner could be seen grass, and leafless trees.
Not even having some corner of my mind calculating that there had been a flood that likely turned the place to a lake, drowning those trees, could keep my relief from flooding me.

October 2017

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