Chapter 21

The Hangman’s Daughter-Chapter 21

CHAPTER 21: GROETHUIS AND THE GOLDEN SCORPION

 

He lay on the slab as still as a gutted fish. His arms were bound. Strong, wiry cords clasped him to the hard bed, and he could not stir an inch. There was no need for binding. He was broken, his bones shattered, his skin seared red. With every breath he took he saw himself in his mind’s eye, tiny and naked, climbing a great mountain of black razor rock. Everything burned. There was not a cell of skin or speck of bone, it seemed, that did not cry out in pain.

He lay in agony. And he waited.

At times he would drift asleep, and then he would be woken by voices. Two dark figures would stand over his bed and talk in whispered tones , like great black clouds growling thunder at each other.

A harsh white light, of a kind Thomas had never seen before, hung from the ceiling and blinded him so that he could not make out their faces, and was forced to listen.

The first voice was silky and vile, it’s tones clipped like rose buds, all wormy and sly and it made him shiver when he heard it.

The second voice was cold, hard and deep. The voice of a killer. He could tell that much. He could tell simply from the way his fingers tried to form fists when he heard it.

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