Walking her horse through the mist, Dantera surveyed her surroundings. She was heading for the front entrance of the encampment where Yoreno and his friends were being held captive.

She swore in Amalfi.

With the mist and the rocks, she was well protected from being seen from the watch towers. The encampment was situated at the base of a winding ravine with claw-like rocks overhanging in various places.

Inside the ravine was a stream. This was where Dantera was, away, down deeper where the mist was nice and thick. Not only that, but the sounds of the river and the waterfalls above would drown out any sounds she made while leading her horse.

This was enemy territory, and though Dantera was an adventurer, she was also a warrior and knew how to expertly utilize the terrain—whichever type it may be—to her advantage.

The flat river rocks provided a stable surface for her mount to walk and follow. For now she would stay here, wait to see if Yoreno and his friends could make it out on their own.

With a heavy sigh, she certainly hoped the gods would allow it, otherwise this would be messy and perhaps… perhaps members of his party would be killed.

She would prevent that from happening.

If she could.

There was also the back exit—a narrow passage between two clefts of stone these warriors used to sally in and out of their encampment stealthily.

The upper-class warriors among them were smart, brutal, and without honor. She relished killing some of them already.

It wasn’t that Dantera had blood lust in her eyes. She simply detested these warriors of darkness to the point that killing them was immensely satisfying.

That—and they had been bothersome pests, constantly searching her out, attacking her, all without success.

King Branlin’s assassins had something to do with their aggressive nature toward her. No hill warriors, no matter that they had their own mages and perhaps even their own king, would be so ardent in pursuing her.

This was their territory.

But had they allowed her, she would pass through easily without much of a need for quibbles.

That was what told Dantera who these warriors were fighting for.

But why?

As a warning bell from the encampment began to toll, Dantera glanced up.

“Oh… here we go.”


About the author


Bio: Some believed me to be a wandering samurai, or a vagrant, or possibly a ninja—though perhaps in my infinite mystery, I am none of these things. Whichever the case, I wander home as Odysseus did after the great Trojan War in some realm unbeknownst to our world. And—by direct theft of a quote from a certain dwarf named Varric Tethras—"I occasionally write books."

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