Daniel held his breath and pressed himself against the smooth wooden wall of Savira’s lair as he waited for the two goblin guards to pass him. He had faith in his ability to conceal himself, especially with Ebona as backup. But Ebona wasn’t here and not only had he never been sneaking into the heart of a dragon’s lair before, but Ystelyan had warned him that Savira was extremely perceptive. It might have given him more pause before he agreed to join the team to infiltrate her lair but she had attacked Lydia and he would not stand for anyone attacking his family.
Thankfully the guards’ gaze slid over him without seeing him as they passed â€“ but they were definitely looking for something. He reached out for his father and the two dragons who formed the rest of the infiltration team and found them all moving carefully along their assigned routes, planting the psychic bombs that would hopefully incapacitate most of Savira’s troops as they went.
I think she knows we’re here, he said.
She knows something is up, certainly, his father agreed. But I don’t think she knows what exactly. Keep going; the sooner we finish planting these things, the sooner we can get out of here.
I know. Daniel felt around with his mind until he was sure the coast was clear, then darted into a small chamber that was one of the target points on the mental map he’d been given. He pulled one of the crystal balls Alaryia had created from his bag, pushed a small amount of hs essence into it to prime it then hid it behind one of the tapestries before sneaking out and immediately flattening himself against the wall again as the guards returned. After they passed once again without seeing him he let out a relieved breath.
That was too close. I didn’t feel them coming.
She’s hiding them somehow, Eritan said. Fortunately not in a way that makes them invisible, but we’d better hurry. If she’s doing that, she knows we’re here even if she doesn’t know where.
Daniel agreed and hurried as much as he dared while keeping an eye out for guards. It made progress extremely slow as the area was now swarming with goblin guards and without the ability to sense them psychically, he had to check around every corner and door before proceeding. He might have given up and fled, looking for a better opportunity to try again, but Lydia was depending on him and he knew she’d do the same for him were the situations reversed.
He planted the next three without too many problems, though the further he penetrated into the lair the more guards there were.He feared planting the last one would not be so easy. Indeed the door to the last target chamber was guarded. All his concealment wouldn’t help him if they saw the door open and he couldn’t teleport in here. He had to distract them, make them think he was somewhere else.
Daniel concentrated for a moment and managed to create an image and noise down the corridor away from him that would look as if he was there and his wards had failed momentarily. The guards spotted it and as he had hoped took off in that direction yelling for backup. Daniel waited until they disappeared around a corner, then darted into the room and positioned the bomb. Now he just needed to get out of here, but the guards were probably back.
He was still considering his options when the door slammed open and a sinuous brown dragon who could only be Savira stalked into the room, claws clacking on the floor. Ystelyan had mentioned that she used her draconic form a lot but he hadn’t expected this. She circled the room twice before suddenly catching him with her tail, knocking him into the centre of the room. As he struggled to regain his breath she struck again, this time psychically, ripping his wards away.
â€œWell, well, well,â€ she said, her voice in dragon form hurting his ears. â€œWhat have we here?â€ She circled him once more. â€œThe Dragon Lord’s son? How nice of you to drop by.â€