“Magistrate, can you hear me?” Kasita touched Thane’s shoulder. “How many fingers am I holding up?”
He groaned. “Jethan, is that you? It hurts. I’m just…” His eyes fell shut, but his breathing steadied.
“We need to get this man to a temple.”
“What about the last tower?”
“I can fly there on Charon, and — wait, Cordwynn is an ogre. Even a giant raven can’t carry her.”
The flooding had done a lot of damage in the Joy district. Soldiers and bartenders, humans and gillmen had all pitched in over the past month to make repairs. The improvement was remarkable.
Jethan scraped the last shovelful of sludge out of a basement, and looked up. The soldier next to them was staring at their blue skin. “Are you Jethan?”
“Magistrate Thane asked me to give you this.” He handed them a small ivory plaque.
Wildflower & Vinnie
Wildflower stood up from the trophy-goblet of ambrosia, still burning. Cordwynn met their eyes from the ring. “Do we keep wrestling?”
The referee raised her hands, unsure.
“No matter. I concede.” Cordwynn bowed to Wildflower. “I have faced you, now. You know my strength now, and I know yours. I shall be glad to test you again — another time.”
The referee lifted the kylix, and held it out to Vinnie. “This is somewhat irregular, but — I declare you tournament champion! Hail Wildflower!”
Still somewhat dazed, Wildflower carried the trophy into the city.
It was about then their shirt caught fire.
The silver glow faded, and the room was dark. Vinnie could barely make out the shape of the now-dry pool — and was that a metal ring around it? Silver? Gold? He leaned in closer.
It was lead. Worthless.