Level 1

1. As I landed, a guard came running, sword in hand. He was a yelling, "Hey, Thief!" and was almost upon me before I could draw my sword. Instinctively, I whirled about, drawing my sword as I did, and he ran headlong onto the sharp point of my weapon. He fell from the parapet with a scream.

Behind the first guard came a second. He, too, ran foolishly toward me. He gave me no chance to prove my innocence, and I was forced to defend myself a second time.

I ran west, then, the only direction I could go. I was high atop the palace wall, and wished only to escape to the relative safety of the docks, where I knew my way around and might find a place to hide and think things through.

2. As I ran, two more guards attacked me, but they were weak swordsmen, stubborn and brave, but overmatched.

3. I came to the corner of the wall and leapt across to another building. I kept running, the sounds of yelling and other running feet echoing behind me.

4. I ran across the rooftops and jumped another gap onto another building. There I turned to meet my pursuers. Two of them leapt the gap, intent on destroying me, but I caught them before they could land, sending them screaming to their deaths. A third guard stopped and stared at me from the other rooftop. When I saw that he made no attempt to follow, I turned and carefully ran onward.

5. Another guard had somehow gotten ahead of me and stood ready to attack. I defeated him quickly, but as I prepared to run, one more guard appeared on an upper landing and jumped athletically over my head. I quickly put my sword away and ran in the direction he had come from, climbing to the higher landing before he could gather himself and attack me. I left him behind and ran onward.

6. I jumped to a lower roof and could see the marketplace below.

7. I came to the end of the roof and carefully climbed down, dropping onto the narrow, first floor patio of a tapestry shop.

8. To the west was a pier. To the east were the shops and warrenlike streets of the soko, the marketplace. However, all thoughts of hiding in the marketplace were dashed when I heard another shout and more guards appeared. I ran west. In the distance, I could see a ship just pulling away from the pier.

9. The guards continued to pursue me, but I was fleeter than they were.

10. I came to the end of the pier. The ship was already too far away! I would never make it. But with a veritable army of the Sultan's guards waving their swords at me, I was inspired to make a great leap, just catching onto a ledge at the stern of the departing ship as she pulled away.

Continue to Chapter 5: The Shadow & the Flame (Level 2)
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