Rat & Will Chapter 28: Good Riddance to Bad Reemus
They left the still sleeping man next to the corpse of the Slardur, Rat still cackling after slicing his pants to ribbons. “Just imagine waking up next to that, then figuring out you have no pants.”
Will snorted. “The pants might be overkill.”
She shrugged. “Makes me feel better.”
With no argument against that, Will opened the door for her.
Back out in the hallway, they found the area empty and looked at each other with disbelief. Surely someone had heard their fight? Shrugging uneasily, they moved to the next door, Rat finding it unlocked as well. She slipped inside the dark room, moving carefully to the bed where two figures lay. Getting closer, she saw a confusing sight. Both figures were covered in blood and very dead.
“Vardo’s balls. What the hell?” Rat spun around, looking about the dim room. Finally, she saw her. A small woman sitting curled up in the corner and staring at them with large, terrified eyes. She was clutching a blood encrusted knife in a white knuckled grip.
“Careful lass.” Will had already seen her. He approached carefully, hunkered over to look smaller and less threatening.
It didn’t work. The girl shied away from Will and towards Rat. She sighed. Did none of these women have a single cell of self preservation? Trying to wipe the snarl from her face, she slowly approached the woman.
“You kill them both? Or just the man?”
The woman crumpled. “J…just…Reemus. He killed Lil.” Tears streaked her face and she trembled violently.
“Right.” The woman was dressed in rags. Barely. Rat looked about. Pulled a nightgown from an open wardrobe and offered it to the woman. “So you took care of him. Good for you. And good timing too. Because you’re going to leave here. Tonight.”
The woman blinked at her. “But they don’t let us leave.”
“But we’re gonna let you. Right, Will?” Rat shoved the nightgown at her again. Behind her, Will nodded silently. “We killed or knocked out pretty much everyone if you go downstairs, then up to the wall. Just be quick and quiet.”
The woman took the nightgown, pulled it over her rags. Something about the clothing helped her escape her fearful stupor. She pulled the rags from underneath the tunic, then used them to wipe at her hands. Rat nodded in approval. The woman moved to the wardrobe, pulled out more clothing and began to dress more fully.
Rat moved back to the bed, noted a gold chain around the neck of the dead man. Removed it. She quickly dug through the desk and furniture of the bedroom, finding a few more items of interest. When she was finished, she turned back to find the woman cramming fancy scarves into a makeshift bag. Again, she approved.
The woman finished, kept her eyes on the bag she held. “My, ah, my husband sold me to Reemus. Said it was the cheapest way to get protection from our new Lord.” She paused, took a breath, then carried on with a rush. “I thought it would be hard to kill Reemus. Thought he would kill me too. But it wasn’t so hard, really.”
She looked down at Rat, her eyes shining hard and suddenly dry. “He’s dead and I’m not.”
Rat nodded. “You’ll do.” She held out the small bag she’d filled with the room’s small valuables. “This will help, whatever you decide to do.”
Eyes going wide, the woman took the bag. For a moment, she looked uncertain, till her eyes went hard again. “There are others here. Men and women. Trapped. Try not to hurt them.” Then she stuffed the bag into her new skirts and slipped quietly from the room.
Rat grinned after her. “Another one who’ll live. That one I even like.”
Will chuckled. “Good enough. On to the next room then?”