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Stories from the Verse
Old Verses New
Chapter 115: Hastings 80
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"That means they know we're here."
Lauren thought about Bethany's words before answering.
"Not necessarily. It means that someone knows we're here, but we don't know who."
"Who else could it be?"
"Well, it certainly could be the vampires, but if vampires powerful enough to use magic against us know we're here, leading us into a swamp probably would not be their best plan. On the other hand, we know that there are–or once were–dryads in this area, and we came to deprive one of them of her prize. She in particular, if she is still alive, has good reason to misdirect us; other dryads might be working to keep us from finding them. Besides, these are the woods of Camelot; Avalon was once here. There might be a wizard, or an entire enclave of wizards, who wish to protect their secrets."
She thought another moment; could there be another answer? She couldn't think of one before Bethany spoke.
"So, we're all right then?"
"Well, we don't know what we're up against," Lauren said, "but I don't think the vampires know we're here anyway. Now, whoever this was, if they were smart, they did not send us in exactly the wrong direction. Still, if we backtrack to where we were this morning, we might be able to pick up which way we were going from there."
They spent the rest of the day getting back to their starting point; the road which had been easier going down was harder going up, and they were quite tired by the time they made camp. They set up their comfort bubbles and spread out their blankets, and Lauren let Bethany sleep first, but did not stay up much past midnight before waking her and going to sleep herself.
There is a behind-the-writings look at the thoughts, influences, and ideas of this chapter, along with eight other sequential chapters of this novel, in mark Joseph "young" web log entry #119: Character Projects. Given a moment, this link should take you directly to the section relevant to this chapter. It may contain spoilers of upcoming chapters.
As to the old stories that have long been here: