Then I heard a yelp. Bjorn, being marched back down the street by a pair of soldier types.
I guess this place wasn’t as abandoned as we thought. “Let him go. He’s with me.”
It was a gamble.
“It’s dangerous to be around here…” he started. Then he looked at me. Down a bit, of course. “Who the heck are you?”
“Siglaugr Lokisdottir.” Hopefully he’d at least heard my name.
Apparently they were, what? Here to stop people falling down a mineshaft? Local cops from whatever the nearest remaining town was.
His eyes narrowed. “I know that name.”
“Then you know why you should let us go.”
The other released Bjorn. “Shouldn’t have told them who you are.”
“They can tell I’m not from around here.” Glamor might work well to fool humans. It wasn’t going to work on any fire giant past puberty.
“Bjorn here was showing me the damage. The problems you are having. I may be able to help.”
“We have orders about her,” the one who had been holding Bjorn said. “We’re to take her to Surtur.”
“I wouldn’t try to follow that order.”
Bjorn was doing the sensible thing. Running. I wasn’t about to argue or try to get him to stop.
“Because you’re going to fight us.”
“If I have to. Surtur only claims his intentions are honorable.”
The implication I left there – although his attempts to coerce me into marriage pretty much counted.
“The king would never.”
“The king is desperate. I figure if we can remove his desperation he will leave me alone. There are giantesses who would literally kill for his attention.”
For a moment, I thought it was going to work. Then they tried to jump me.
It was a hard fight solely because I didn’t want to kill them. If I hadn’t tried so hard to avoid doing so I would probably have won.
As it was, one of them got me on the side of the head with the pommel of his sword and I went down into darkness, with my last thought being that I had really screwed this one up.
At least I knew I was not going to die.
…and then darkness.