December 4, 2013

The Promise of Gold, Final Segment

Hello! This is the final segment of The Promise of Gold. I'll be beginning my editing and revisions for this piece as I prepare to send it off to One-Eyed Jack and Spiral Libraries. Enjoy!

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"Get down," Sharp whispered as he and Ginelle hid in opposite directions. From what she heard, she wasn't quite sure whether the dogs were actually talking about Ian or not.Sharp bit his tongue and shook his head in disappointment. Ginelle unsheathed one of her pistols and threw it towards Ian, who caught it. Silently, she explained the modern dial system and how to create different effects. Ian put a cloak on, one that seemed to blend in directly with the groundfaring smog. He tossed a folded cloak to Ginelle, who followed suit. She had to admit that, even though the cloak made the outside look darker, getting to the warehouse at the end of the island took only minutes.
"You know that Ivy's got other plans," Ian said as they ran, turning a sharp corner. Ginelle pretended to understand.

"Yeah." They approached the warehouse in little time, greeted by a shattered pane of glass.
"You're funny," Sharp sighed, "Everything is, at one point. Thief's logic in mad, mad situations. You first, there's a window." Ginelle slipped through without much trouble, though Sharp was in without a sound. Ivy was standing in the opposite corner, back to the wall and daggers strewn on the floor just feet away. What seemed to be a small platoon of clockworks were all facing her, marching slowly forwards. Ivy began climbing the wall – still facing the Armada – and reaching for a rafter. From what Ginelle inspected, her anxious glare told nothing about the gold and ammunition lining the room.
"Hi, Ivy!" Ian laughed, waving. Ginelle raised an eyebrow and walked along the wall, unsheathing her guns.
"So, you have brought friends?" A group of clockworks cowered as poisonous tendrils seemingly grew from the concrete flooring. Ivy was perched on the beam, looking down at the clockwork commander that spoke. It had stepped free of the poison and faced upwards. "No matter, they will meet an equal doom." Ginelle glanced back; Ian had disappeared, as if melting into the shadows. She turned sharply at the clinking of coins. In a corner, Ian carefully sorted through a chest brimming with gold. She closed her left eye, providing for optimal aim as she released sparks.
Ivy always insisted on walking in the shadows, she assured herself, and if there aren't any for me, I'll make them. She looked to Ivy, smiling.
"I'll catch up. Go!"
Ivy looked down, carefully tracing the trajectory paths that Ivy's guns would create. She glanced at Ian searching through her gold and scowled. She considered his right to do so, having gained such a position in the town, but quickly shook the idea off. Ginelle's guns went off; Ivy cringed as a hanging sack of flour exploded, covering the room in whiteness. Ivy ran along the beam, crawling along and opening a window. Very quickly, the draft opened a pocket of air, clearing the way for Ivy to escape. Sharp was on the roof already, scratching the flour from his hair. Ivy watched the window, waiting. Ginelle had to have some plan of escape – she almost always did.
"You think she'll get out?" Ivy asked, sliding down to sit on the edge of the roof, watching the warehouse doors, instead.
"Not with that many clockworks," Ian sighed, "We need to -"
"Are you kidding!?" Ivy snapped, "We'll all get killed if we go back in." She hugged her knees, thinking back to Ginelle on the Marleybonian ship before. She had organized all the papers that Ivy had left on her desk, one night; She had also talked her way into getting decent food for half-price in Mooshu, instead of having to steal it, as Ivy would.
"I'm a fake," Ivy sighed, "They always called me a gal of the skies, but who am I now?" Ian squinted.
"A flour-covered -" Ivy glared at him, and he turned away.
"A liar."
"Well, I thought you had enjoyed that," said a voice from just feet away, followed by a cough. Ivy felt flour hit the back of her neck, and she withdrew a scowl. "Look what I've got!" Sitting between Ivy and Ian, Ginelle opened a large drawstring sack filled with gold. Ivy's eyes lit up. "Once the clockworks were down, I found this in the back of the room." The roof tiling, even though it was cold from the frosty morning, seemed to be warmed under the joy of seeing so much money in the hands of the scraggly musketeer who had seemingly tagged along. "When are we gonna deliver?" Ivy's face fell. Ian was uncharacteristically still present, an eyebrow raised in anticipation. "The orphans will be so happy!" Ivy glanced off towards the waking town, watching the folk cower at gunfire and attempt to complete their daily tasks.
"We'll go now," Ivy decided, "Deliver the entire sum. We promised, didn't we?" Ginelle cheered, casting a note of joy into the otherwise dismal day. She looked down, a snarky remark for Ian already cooked up. He had disappeared into the fog, though, having gotten through whatever business he had with the two. Ivy lifted the sack of gold, furrowing her brow.
"Funny, it's about a gold piece lighter than it looked on its way in," she said, looking back towards the fog, "We owed him." As the two made their way through the city, searching for the heart and Admiral Benbow Taven, Ginelle came across a thought that made her smile.
"Don't tell me you'll start being honest, now," she teased, "It won't be fun."
"I'm looking into it," Ivy sighed, the glint in her eyes promising otherwise.
"You're funny." Ginelle thought back to what Ian had said, "Everything deserves to be."
"You know?" Ivy asked, knocking on the rotted door to the orphanage, "Everything does."
"Yeah." The door opened to two smiling faces, and they were offered tea on their way in.

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