His legs ached and his chest burned. Never had he pushed himself to these limits. Devrin Rydell was a joke among his peers, but he was a workable investigator. At this moment he wished he’s taken up another profession, that and cursed himself for not getting more exercise instead of letting his hirelings do all the legwork around the office.
He rounded a corner to catch his breath. Heaving and sweating profusely he looked down at his blood covered clothing, his hands and equipment. The remnants of the mercenaries he’d hired to come help him on this trip. All gone.
He looked around the corner. The streets were deathly silent and the the road to the bridge and the was short but looked so far and perilous. He was sure his legs would collapse beneath him any second.
“I told those fools we should have gotten here earlier. But NOoooOOOOOO, ‘We don’t believe in ghosts” fools.’ He remarked sarcastically as the sunset disappeared and gave way to night.
Hushed whispers brought Rydell back to the task at hand. “Gotta get to the boat.”
He moved silently along the wall to the next street over. Not the slightest movement. He made a break over to the next set of buildings. Barely making a sound despite his size. He looked back from where he came and realised that he should inject some urgency into his flight.
Across the way he watched as a green mist enveloped the building and came pouring slowly out the alleyway. Shadowy figures lurching and moving inside the fog. On occasional burst of eerie light highlighting the ghastly features of the things inside the sickly green mist.
“Better hussle your fat ass Rydell or you’re gonna lose it!”
Moving between the buildings as fast as he could muster he was managing to stay ahead of the mist but it was moving steadily towards him. Finally he gasped, his heart ready to burst as a smile crept on his face, the boat and was just there, a few yards away he could see it in the middle of the river next to the bridge. The lamp already burning thanks to the riverhand he’d hired to take him here.
Wait a sec, what was it moving…
“Goddamnwhoreson is leaving me here!!!”
“Come back, wait you goblin licking dullard!! He screamed as he ran, again, down the sandy road towards the boat. Devrin was almost to the riverbed when he got knocked from his feet.
He was a bit of a ruffian in his youth so he could take a hit and knew how to roll with it, but he wasn’t young and it hurt like a horse’s kick to the gonads. He crouched and let loose a bold from his heavy crossbow and he could hear a solid hit but the massive shape barely budged. The looming thing stood over him as the green mist enveloped them both.
Claws from things in the mist clawed at him. He bashed something in the face with the butt of his crossbow and shanked another with a dagger he quickly drew. But yet more came on. He screamed in rage and dodged a swing from the massive creature in the mist. He wheezed as his broken rib pained from the first blow he got from the thing. The boat meanwhile slowly went down the river. The soft din of combat and death echoing in the night air.
As the boat went under the bridge , the riverhand heard a roar and when he came out the other side he was welcomed by a large shadow on the boat a split second before crash-landing hard! The boat rocked and threatened to capsize, thankfully it was a sturdy boat.
The riverhand looked on and drew his sword thinking he was sure to face some grisly thing when he heard Devrin groan and roll over. Jagged cuts and bruises covering his form. “Put that away son and get rowing, get us outta here…”
Devrin looked back to shore and saw hundreds of shadowy figures standing there. Staring silently in the night unmoving as the boat travelled further and further away.
“…I have to tell Akorian what I’ve found.”
End Epilogue 3