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Chapter 1
Interlude 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4


     Page 17    

And then he heard a noise out on the other end of the hall, or at least thought he did, the sound of something suddenly sliding along the floor until it came to rest under the resistance of its own friction, like someone accidentally kicking a stone shard as they walked.  In that instant, Mancuso knew he was not alone and rebuked himself for wallowing in self-gratifying nostalgia.

Satisfied that he could not be seen by someone in the hall, Mancuso moved the sofa aside a little.  Squatting down to where the sofa had been he whispered a word of command to the light cylinder.  The light changed from white to red.  When he directed the red light on the floor, ancient characters and symbols appeared.  He touched five of these symbols in what appeared to be a random sequence.  Stale air escaped with a hiss through cracks before unseen on the stone floor.  He quickly lifted the slab loose and pushed it to the side.  Nothing but a small wooden chest with tarnished brass bands lay underneath.  Removing the chest and carrying it under his left arm he returned to the entrance.

He neither heard nor saw movement outside, but he knew better.  That rock didn’t fall.  It was kicked. 

The main passage lay back the way he came and he would have to pass whoever was out there to get to it and this visitor was not going to greet him with affection.  Fortunately, the architects of the Old Fortress laid out the barracks in keeping with the old tradition of separating the officer from the common soldier.  Since they considered commanders as part of the officer class, they built a narrow hall connecting all of the commanders quarters.  This allowed the officers to meet in private but still have quarters near their men.  They divided the barracks into sections of 50 rooms, two soldiers to a room with 25 rooms on each sided of a hall and the commanders quarters at the end of each hall.  A great corridor joined each of the “halls of hundreds” and a narrow hall joining the quarters of the commanders of hundreds.

Scroll 1: History's Mirror                                                                                    Chapter 1: Treasures from the Past


Copyright 2001 by Darrell A. Newton, All Rights Reserved.
For problems or questions regarding this web contact me [ Email].
Last updated: December 10, 2001.

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