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Although it was disused for mining, the tunnel was well kept and heavily lit by so many wall mounted lamps, or wood burners on the floor although the ground underfoot was a little uneven. "We're halfway there" the leading guide said. Despite all efforts to stop or slow the group down Hamish muttered and groaned nearly every step of the way "Bloody walking" he moaned, "Mi bloody feet are killin mi" he was being persistent. Christaben was behind him, walking alongside Waynos "I bet if we dangle a shank in front of him" Christaben said "He might walk that bit faster" Waynos added finishing of Christabens sentence.
"Will ya bloody quit it" he overheard them, in a mocking accent "Dani say tha, ya might hurt mi feet" Christaben laughed at Waynos' antics. Out of sheer frustration Hamish stormed off, "Look at him go now" Christaben pointed out. Ridus carried on without any regard, but seeing Hamish rush past as if his arse was on fire proved to be enough to instruct the others push on harder.
The young girl never left ridus' side "At the rate we are going, we will be at the other side in about an hour" the guide said. "Good" Ridus said "Right lads pick up the pace" he added and they pushed on.
Some time had passed, and they came out the other side. Small wooden shacks and a large fire pit in the middle of them, there was a chill from the evening breeze "You can rest here for the night" one of the guides told them. "We have horses for you all to go on your way, at a fair price" said a man who looked like Layton, but with a little difference in height and hair, the rest you could have sworn it was him, however it was his brother Morice.
At the encampment Ridus spoke again of what was going to happen "So we're all clear on this, we'll go to Queen Jordana herself" he said "We need to find anything we can about this so called Emperor" he added. "That man has become like a scorpion, and that sting of his has taken too much for my liking" Waynos said, "It's about time we fight back" Christaben said with animosity. "Ar tha fucking prick better come see me and ma hammer" Hamish said with hopes to lighten the mood. Ridus then said "Sounds like we are all craving for retaliation, but we have a job to do" he supped on a bit of water "Don't worry, we'll give the man the warm welcome he deserves, and the spiteful pathetic bastard will be at the end of a sword or the executioner will have a busy day".
The conversation carried on between them, but suddenly "Why?" the young girl spoke in hushed tones. All eyes fell upon the young girl, Christaben raised both hands "I'm no good with fatherly speeches, I'm off to rest up." Hamish followed Christaben "She's all yours old timer" Waynos uttered. They sat and gazed at the fire "Why do we fight?, or why do we hurt?" Ridus said, she replied "Why do you think about killing?" he looked at the young girl, who was poking the fire with a stick "If the answers were easy, there would be no need for the questions". They just sat there staring into the fire, Ridus was lost in thought.
Drums, deep heavy drums pounded in unison, a beat for every stroke of the large oars. Like a raging thunder the Nerumians sailed on through the late evening, Emperor Nerumas knew Scarban would soon be on the horizon. General Laramy stood proudly on the flagship, eagerly waiting to land upon the Scarban shores "Put your backs into it you animals" he bellowed the drums beat that little faster "Steady the drums" one ship after the other went quiet under the instruction of every ships Captain. The General wasn't happy at the order given "Tell me what you sodding fools are doing?" just as he finished his question, the ships went dark and nothing but moonlight shone the way forward. The ships Captain refrained from saying a word, instead he just pointed.
The Scarban coastline lay before them, they sailed closer in a stealthily way, away from any known town, village or port. Emperor Nerumas' plan was thus far successful, and now with the addition of the ships sailing in the cover of darkness "General Laramy, get my army prepared". The General bowed his head "At once your eminence". Quietly he went to the lower deck "Guard the Emperor well, prepare to kill any Scarbinian in your path. Destroy the betrayers of the Empire, in the name of Emperor Nerumas". A roaring cheer came from the men "Hush yourselves, especially if you wish to leave this boat alive!" General Laramy shouted, sudden quietness only the breathing was heard from the men.