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n o w

She no longer deals with the future, only the present.

Perched high in a tree in Farrow’s Wood, grimy and unwashed, she observes the approaching figure. He is nothing, no more an adult than she is. About her age, but blond. He looks like an islander, which is unusual. He’s moving quickly. That’s his first mistake.

He still hasn’t seen her when he pauses directly beneath her perch. Searching for her, no doubt. Barely a second later, she drops onto his back, silent and catlike. She pushes his face into the ground to muffle the sounds of his surprise.

Who sent you?” Her voice is rusty with disuse.

I don’t know what you mean.”

Lying is his second mistake.

The Huntsman or Horizon?”

I dunno what you’re talking about.”

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