Cedany's hands were tied roughly in front of her and one of the soldiers ran his hands over her, checking for weapons. The end of her rope was tied to the saddle of one of the horses, and the horsemen started toward the palace at a brisk trot, just slow enough for their prisoners to keep up, but fast enough to jerk them around.
Cedany kept her eyes fixed on the rump of the chestnut in front of her, deliberately ignoring Harrison beside her.
They were pulled into the center of the town. As Harrison could barely keep up, the rope around his neck got increasingly tight. Harrison eyed the gallows waiting for him. He feared the girl would be headed that way too, but the difference in their ties, he thought, may be relevant. Her hands were bound in front of her, and that was how they pulled her along, but his hands were behind him, and he was being pulled along by a rope around his neck.
"This one 'ere is goin' to the gallows," a fat guard said shoving his thumb in Harrison's direction. Harrison fell to the ground. He was terrified. He tried to get back on his feet, but he was dragged for a few feet by his neck before he got up. "What 'appens to this one 'ere?" the guard asked shoving his thumb in Cedany's direction.
"We didn't know he had an accomplice." The other soldier replied, scratching his chin. "They should probably go to the king first, let him decide." The king was infamous for wanting to judge every potential traitor as they were: personally.
"Does that mean me too?" Harrison asked hopefully.
((sorry, I got nothing. Your response was a curveball to me :p and I thought I'd thought of every possibility xD feel free to decide Harrison's fate))
The soldier shot a glare at Harrison, then, without answering the question, pulled out a small piece of paper and scratched out a message. He folded it four times and handed it to a messenger, telling her to take it to the castle.
"Put them in the dungeon for now." He told the other soldiers.
Harrison's rope was untied from a horse and given to the messenger. The messenger tightened the rope around Harrison's neck due to the fact that he was much bigger than the messenger and the messenger didn't have a horse. Harrison now really couldn't breathe. His lips were turning blue and he was gasping for air which he would not be granted. He didn't think he was going to make it to the prison and he tried to say something but he could barely make it out. "Leh heh goh," he gasped. He wasn't sure of anybody could understand but now the remorse he felt was overflowing. if he was going to die he didn't want an innocent's blood on his hands.
Cedany glared at him as they were led towards the castle. The dungeon was right outside it, a small building with a large basement. "Oh, so now you're a gentleman. You really need to get your mood swings under control."
She stumbled and almost fell when her rope was jerked on, and she took the hint and shut up.
They were led into the dungeon and thrown into adjoining cells, furnished with nothing but buckets and straw for bedding. At least it was dry, not dank and mouldy like people always say dungeons are like.
Cedany paced her tiny cell in silence after her door clanged shut.
When Harrison was thrown into his own cell right next to Cedany's, the messenger neglected to loosen the rope around his neck or at least untie his hands. He was exhausted. Blood was being withheld from his brain, and now his lips were really blue. He was on the ground wriggling trying to loosen one of the two ropes. He could do neither and he didn't have the strength or brain function to try and find something sharp to cut his hands free. Eventually he just stopped moving. With his hands behind his back, his lungs were limited severely, and with the rope around his neck, he couldn't even fill that space. He didn't feel it was right to ask Cedany after he'd already gotten her in trouble she didn't deserve, so he decided to just die here, and give the king a real mess to clean up.
Cedany watched him turn blue for a moment, letting him suffer for a little bit before reaching through the bars and loosening the knot roughly. It was a bit tricky, with her hands tied, but she managed it.
((Sorry, busy weekend))
The rope loosened slightly and it made all the difference in the world. He felt the warm tingling rush of blood as it rushed to his purple fingertips. From there, he frantically pulled his numb hands out and tried to loosen the rope around his neck. It was a difficult task to accomplish because he was so oxygen depraved he could barely see straight. When his fumbling fingers loosened the noose just enough, he fell to the ground. He laid/lie there taking in slow painful breaths. Inhailing the sweetness of the air, only a person deprived of it could, he shut his eyes and let the blood flow through his veins. He didn't dare stand or move for fear of the nauseating headspinning he knew would occur.
((That's okay, I've been kinda busy too. Remodeling the front yard takes a while.))
Cedany stepped away from the bars and started pacing her cell restlessly, ignoring the gasps coming from her neighbor. There was a tightness in her own throat from tears that threatened to spring unbidden to her eyes, but she wouldn't let them. She'd never broken the law. She'd never so much as stolen an apple, and she might be hung for treason, all because a stranger framed her.
It took a while but soon Harrison could breathe easy. He slipped the noose off and sat against the back wall. It hurt to breathe and it hurt worse to speak, but he spoke anyway. "I'm sorry," he whispered to Cedany. He avoided her eyes in case she looked at him. He didn't even turn his head when he spoke and he'd kept his eyes shut.
Before any more could be said, a guard walked in. "Your trial will be held at the gallows," he said to Cedany. "The townspeople will decide your fate. You," he turned to Harrison, "will be hanged for your crimes. No trial."
((not meant to be taken as power playing but I don't know if you consider this so))
"I haven't done anything," he gasped from the pain, "except hold this girl hostage to save myself from an unwarranted death. I did not attempt to assassinate the king." he pleaded.
((Powerplaying is when you make another writer's character do something. Since the guard is not my character, and no one has made the king do anything yet and he isn't anyone's character yet, that isn't powerplaying. :) Though, I do have a plan for stuff involving the king later, so I'll probably be doing most of his stuff. Also, nameless guards are usually powerplayable characters.))
Cedany completely ignored him, staring straight ahead as she paced. So she was looking right at the guard when he walked in, and could very easily glare at him. Which she did. Normally, she'd be quite friendly, but she was in a bad mood today.
He slid a large, tarnished key into the lock of Cedany's cell as the gaoler stepped down the stairs and unlocked Harrison's.
"I thought the king judged prisoners." Cedany said.
The gaoler slipped a smelly hood over her head before answering. "Yes, he does. His Majesty has the final say, but he likes the townspeople to think some things are a democracy." He grunted. "Makes them think they're important, and, usually, they vote for death anyway, so he's fine with it. People love a good show."
A hood was pulled over Harrison's head, too, and they were pulled roughly out of the jail. The hoods were probably to add suspense, Cedany thought. Plus, people didn't like to look into the eyes of the people they were condemning. It made it easier.
Harrison was shoved out of his cell and to the stairs. Because the bag was over his head, he stumbled on the stairs. It seemed like a long journey to the top of the steps. Harrison noticed the difference in the light as he stepped outside. We're outside now, he thought, Once I step on that wooden step, I'm on the gallows. I could run. But what about the girl? Suddenly he tripped on the wooden step. He swallowed. He couldn't get his thoughts straight before the noose was looped around his neck.
((Got any ideas on how they're going to escape?))
Cedany was shoved up a high step, and she almost tripped. She could hear Harrison being pushed into place beside her, and the townspeople talking, thei voices mingling into meaningless babble.
She reached up and fingered the ugly wooden locket that hung around her neck for support, running her fingers along its smooth carved ridges. Her father had made it for her, and she'd had it for as long as she could remember.
A herald started reading out their crimes, but Cedany ignored him. None of it was true, so what was the point in listening?
Harrison ignored the man speaking. "We are both innocent of crimes that warrant death," he spoke loud and clear even through the the bag. The crowd hushed and the man stopped speaking. Because Harrison's hands weren't bound, he kept them at his side. "This young woman here, has done nothing more than hide a so called criminal to save her own life." His hands slowly reached for the bag on his head. He twisted it slightly bringing a tiny hole to his eye. He looked out. He spotted the lever that dropped the floor beneath their feet. He turns slightly to Cedany so only she can hear. "When I say go," he whispered, "Grab and hold on to the rope as long as you can. Do not fall or you will die."
Cedny frowned. What was he doing? She heard a few people in the crowd scream that they were liars, traitors.
She did as he said anyway. At this point, it couldn't hurt.
In a split second, Harrison shoved his fingers between the rope and his neck and jumped. He reached out his foot as far as he could and kicked the lever. At first he thought he hadn't kicked hard enough but when he heard the people in the crowd scream, he knew he had. He landed on the wood and quickly took the noose off his neck. He ran to Cedany and pulled her down. "Run!" he shouted as guards and peasants came at them. He doubted they would get very far, but he hoped.
Cedany ripped the hood from her face, confused. She only spared a splitsecond to stare at the horde that charged them before running. Someone grabbed her hair and yanked, but then suddenly their grip was gone, and she heard them grunt in pain as they hit the ground. She didn't look back, just kept running.
"Get to the wall!" She shouted at Harrison. It seemed like a stupid idea; the wall was a dozen feet high, there was no where to go there. Supposedly.
The crowd was lagging behind slightly, all the people hindering rather than helping each other.