Photo © Alastair Forbes
Jotan winced. He’d been cleaning his nails with his knife to look tough and had just jabbed himself. He bit his tongue to keep from screaming in front of the scholar.
“You want me to get spit from this atchewa-ka-ta… er, demon-boar?”
“Demon-boar is a misnomer, they’re not really…” Master Herrala sighed. “Yes, saliva. Spit. And remember, it must be alive at the time.”
“For the magical vision-y powers.”
Herrala nodded. “Can you do it or not?”
Later, sneaking toward the dozing demon-boar, Jotan pondered that question. Pondering only took his mind in circles, though, so he concentrated on walking quietly instead.
It helped that demon-boars snore. Who knew?
Then he saw it, hanging on the curve of the boar’s tusk: a huge droplet of spit. It fell, but another slowly formed in its place.
Creeping closer, Jotan held the jar as far as his arm would reach. This might actually work. One more step…
The image inside the droplet captured his attention. Strange people, impossible spires, bizarre machines.
He shuddered. It was wrong to see that. Wrong. He jerked his hand back.
The demon-boar twitched awake.
Running, Jotan pondered whether misnomer meant light sleeper. Stupid scholar shoulda just said.