Alinash didn’t really care if any of the humans managed to escape with him, but he knew he couldn’t slip out on his own. Plus, they did have some decent ideas of their own.
He was quiet the rest of the day. He had to be. His locks were already unlocked, and despite the fact he told her not to, Thurgryd had left him with two daggers wrapped in gauze around his leg. What a mess it would be if the guards found those… He couldn’t chance it, but she did it anyway. I hate when people don’t listen. He figured if he could make it to tonight without being discovered, then the daggers could come in as being useful.
They waited that night until the guard who brought water passed through their cell room. No one else should come in for a while after that. It was just them and the one guard assigned to their cell room. It was time.
“Hey guard!” old flea beard called out. “Your mother was good!” He made an obscene motion to go along with his words and laughed.
Alinash rolled his eyes. He hoped that wasn’t the best taunting a human could do. The guard remained in his place, reading his book.
One of the other humans tossed a small pebble at the guard. “Hey, bucket head! You’re ugly!”
The guard shook his head and continued reading.
A few more minutes passed. They had gone over this during one of the few moments that there wasn’t a guard in the room. If an attempt to get the guard near the bars didn’t work, they were to wait before trying the next one. There was no sense in making it obvious that they were trying to get the guard to come near.
The third human tried about ten minutes later. “Hey, guard,” he said, holding his arm up through the bars as well as he could with the shackles. “Can you come look at this? This guy punched me earlier, just after the medic left, and it cut the skin. I think I need a bandage. Are there any spare?”
That was a little better, but there’s no way the guard is going to—
His thoughts were interrupted when the guard put his book down and got out of his chair. He was falling for it after all. The guard started approaching the bars of the cell. Closer. A little closer. The guard reached out to check the prisoner’s wound. It happened in a blink of an eye. The humans had coordinated well. The human who had successfully lured the guard over, grabbed the guard’s arm and pulled him against the bars. The others lunged from the sides. One of them grabbed his leg. Another grabbed his other leg. A fourth grabbed his other arm, and the edge of his helmet and held him tight against the bars. As they did that, old flea beard grabbed the keys of the guard’s belt. The guard started to call for help.
“I wouldn’t do that if I were you. One more word and you’re a dead man.” The first human wasn’t messing around. He had grabbed the sword off the guard’s belt and was pointing it at him.
Alinash fumbled with his locks which Thurgryd had left unlocked on his shackles for him. They fell off to the floor and for the first time in four days, he could move his arms. He was sore and tired, but there was no time to stop and think about it now. He started unraveling the bandages on his leg while the humans stole the guard’s armor and tied him to his chair at sword point. Making sure the guard wasn’t looking, he slipped the daggers away from the splints. Crazy dwarf. I hate crazy dwarf women.
A gag and blindfold for the guard were made of some of his bandages. He limped, quietly cursing each step to the pile of armor and pulled out a lower leg guard and the helmet. The humans were quietly arming themselves as well with the armor and the weapons from the weapons rack. He slipped the helmet on over his head, cramming his ears in against his head. The discomfort was barely noticeable next to the pain in his leg. He ripped the rest of the bandages off and removed the wooden splint. He quickly strapped on the leg guard. It was stronger and would hopefully give him more support to walk.
The others were all armed now. One wore some should guards. Another had the guard’s breastplate. They all had a weapon. It was time to move. Alinash limped his way over to the guard and quickly inspected his bindings. They should hold for a bit. He leaned over and kissed the guard’s cheek. “I’m going back to Silvermoon, bitch.”
He grinned as he joined the others. He wasn’t going back to Silvermoon, but if they believed that he was, they’d spend less time looking for him, and would probably forget all about him in a year or so. Still, staying hidden the next few days was going to be tricky. That’s if they managed to get out.
He waited while old flea beard stuck his head out into the hall. “It’s clear. Move quickly, move quietly.” Old flea beard waited while the others crossed the hallway, moving to help Alinash go across last. They heard a short scuffle in the room and entered in time to see the guard fall to the ground. One of the humans had stabbed him.
“We’re not supposed to be killing them,” Alinash whispered.
The man who killed him pulled his sword out of the joint between the chest plate and the arm. “He swung his sword at me first, elf, and if you ask me, they all deserve it.” He spat on the guard’s body.
Old flea beard was already working to free the prisoner’s held in this room. Alinash decided to drop it and helped the newly freed men arm themselves and filled them in on the plan. Quiet from room to room and get as many free as we can. We can outnumber them and get out that way. Alinash left out a vital part of his own plan. When they do notice us, you’ll all be too busy fighting to notice the one guy sneaking out.
The next two rooms were taken at the same time. One more guard was restrained. One more guard died. Ten more people were armed and joined them. Alinash kissed the living guard on the cheek, just as he had the other, and made sure he told him he’d be going back to Silvermoon before heading to the next room.
That’s where they ran into trouble. While the twenty or so prisoners made their way from the fourth room to the fifth, one of the guards from a room further down came out into the hallway. He as probably one of the patrols who went to check each room, but Alinash didn’t have time to verify if that was true or not. He shouted out the warning.
Old flea beard called out as well, “Phase two! Fight!” The guard in the fifth room was already subdued. Alinash limped in, trying not to cry out in pain with each step. He used the guard’s keys to unlock the cell and told the humans inside to arm themselves. They followed his instruction and ran out into the hallway moments later.
Alinash wanted to collapse now. He hurt everywhere and he was hungry and tired, but he couldn’t stop now. He stayed along the wall, partially using it for support to walk. The fighting was on the stairs now. They must have called in more guards from outside. To his surprise, the human prisoners actually seemed to be gaining ground. He followed behind the mob, and as they went further up the stairs, he crawled on hands and knees to get up them too. His leg was in bad shape and he felt sick.
The fighting had spread out in the room at the top of the stairs now. He reached the top step and stayed low, crawling to the side of the room near an exit. Coward. Maybe, but you’re a living coward. He slipped out the exit to find himself next to the canal. There were buildings across the street. An empty crate sat outside of one, next to a low hanging roof. He glanced around. All the guards are busy, idiot. Of course, it’s clear. He hurried across the street and scrambled up on top of the crate, using his injured leg as little as possible, and pulled himself up to the roof. He used his arms again to do most of the climbing to a higher roof, only searching for footholds with his good foot.
It was slow going, and much scarier going down from a higher roof to a lower roof than it was going up, but he made his way across the district to more familiar rooftops. He stopped at the one belonging to the shop, and carefully lowered himself down to the window. He let himself in.
Harrier wasn’t there. Alinash went to the desk and used a piece of paper and Harrier’s pen and ink to write ‘GET HELP, NOT ZAR, THANKS’ on the paper. He placed it on the nightstand, folding the paper so that it would stand up. Then hobbled to the closet and pulled out an old blanket. He put it on his side of the bed and lay on top of it. He knew he was a mess and he smelled, and the last thing he wanted to do was ruin the bed with it. He was also too exhausted to do anything other than sleep right now so the old blanket would have to do. He passed out as soon as he lied down.