This is part 7 of a complete short story (in snippets) set in Sorrel's world. For those who have already read the Sorrel novels (and if you haven't, you should - they're good books!) this is set after the end of Sorrel in Silver - but you don't need to have read the novels for it to make sense, and it doesn't contain too many spoilers for the main trilogy. Part 6 is here, in case you missed it last week. A giant horror has crept up on our hapless heroine, and she has decided to swim for it; her friend Kelhene is on the shore.
Kelhene was moving cautiously along the skyline, keeping down and trying not to attract the ruzdrool's attention. Not much danger of that – its eyes were firmly on me. Assuming the white globes were eyes. I swam a little further out, and wondered if I could get to the far side of the Swan and clamber aboard from the stern. I'd still be too close to the ruzdrool.
'Kelhene!' I bellowed. 'Can you lure it away for long enough for me to get my coronet?'
The ruzdrool shrieked at my words, clearly angered at my audacity in daring to shout. It tottered forward to the very edge of the water, but still did not venture in. Either it couldn't swim or it thought there was something in the lake even nastier than it was.
Not a thought I liked.
Kelhene was shaking her head, wisely not calling out or catching its attention. I could see her point. In the time it took me to get ashore, get into the Swan, don my coronet and fry the ruzdrool it would have chased her down, driven half a dozen tentacle spines into her body and enjoyed the first few morsels of rare Kelhene steak. My making the ruzdrool extra-well-done would be too late to save Kelhene from being a meaty dish.
As always, comments welcomed!