Sanimir wanted to scream. He wanted to run. He could do neither. Since his sister’s usual visit on Friday to make sure he remained silenced, his aunt had come up with a new way of keeping an eye on him. He thought they had made it from an old harness, but he really didn’t know what the parts of harnesses were called. He knew the leather strap was tight around his wrist, and the lock that was looped through the holes in the strap was strong. It was thick leather. The strap was about five feet long. The other end of it was the same as the end around his wrist. Right now he was tethered to one of the beams in the dirty barn. Earlier, he had been attached to one of his cousins and asked to carry sacks of feed from a cart to the storage. After that, he was tethered to the fence, while the cousin he had been attached to moved the hawkstriders from the barn to the fenced area. Then he was moved into the barn and asked to clean out the nesting areas.
And of course he was stuck here. One of the workers was in the building with him, cleaning one of the stalls. Sanimir was sure he had been told to keep an eye on him. He leaned against one of the beams and crossed his arms. The leather strap hung in front of him in a low arch to the next beam. He couldn’t run if he wanted to.
He frowned. That meant that he wouldn’t be put in the basement all day, which meant he wouldn’t be able to work on his tunnel. He was sure it was almost finished. Another day or two was all it would take. He had already made plans to run to the nearby forest. The scary one. They wouldn’t suspect that he would go that way. However, now the plans would have to be put on hold. He couldn’t dig if he wasn’t in the right place.
It had been a week since he had seen Isandri. She must have written to Aeramin. Surely he had gotten the message by now. His frown grew deeper. He had already cried. He glanced at the worker. He wasn’t going to cry here. He picked up the pitchfork and walked to one of the stalls his tether allowed him to reach. At least the work would help him keep his mind off it until he could figure out plan D.