It continues on.
It is all so much easier, in France. Or England, come to think of it. There, the monsters are all slain – or, like me, they have learned how to slide through the lives of the mortals without undue bother. So when two or more of us meet for the first time in lands supposedly free of our sort, there is a general agreement that discretion should be our watchwords. There is no need to kick up a fuss until a fuss is required.
But the Holy Roman Empire shares borders with the Withered Lands – and the Russians and Ottomans, who are almost as unsettled. The Empire’s monsters have not always learned how to accommodate; indeed, far too many of them recognize only the categories of predator, and prey. Worse, they are too few to organize for their own survival, but too numerous to simply ignore each other.
And there is nothing they hate more than the smell of another predator on the wind. I had decided that the risk would be small enough for a simple overnight trip; I now suspected I had miscalculated. If true, the trick here would be how to rectify the problem without having to blot out too many entries in the copy-book. I would rather that nothing delayed my arrival at Kassel – like, say, a full Inquisition squad. I might survive their attention without discovery, but my luggage most assuredly would not.