A Guard strode up to me with the air of an executioner. So I was going to die. I stared at his boots, dark green and luminescent as the dying light from the window far to my right glinted off the tanned and treated forest leaves. Oh, how I’d love to walk the forest, the rivers, the mountains, the world, just once more before I died. He said, “Traitor.” That was my new name, and my cue to obey if I didn’t want another smack across the cheek like the one I got in the cell hole. The first cut had finally gummed up all the way, so it wasn’t bleeding, but it itched like crazy.
I pulled my head up, struggling to keep looking straight at him as my head swam. It felt like I was falling to one side, but there was no way to fall. You’re all hung up like a wet, smelly towel, remember?
His eyes glinted with a maniac’s pleasure. “Traitor,” he smirked, “you still have a way out of this. It’s really quite simple, Traitor. Admit you were wrong to disobey the High Order and all its affiliates, and we’ll let you off with a simple expulsion. Beyond the Wall.”
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