“Karrowyn isn’t at all like Quartz Hills or Chesserton.”
“Elaborate,” Colin said, eyes focused on the road ahead.
“Hmmm... Well, it’s close to the Capital and the central provinces, but life seems to be more difficult here.”
“In what way?” prompted Emalynn’s mentor as he maneuvered Gertha (the mare) and the cart unsteadily around a rather large pothole.
“Well, so far all we have seen are sheep farmers and fishermen and traveling merchants. I get the feeling,” Emalynn mused, “that how they get money is rather limited.”
“Good observation. Anything else?”
“The people here are less friendly and a little suspicious. I guess it’s because the province is less protected from any visitors who come over the sea, so they have had to be on guard for much of their lives.” Emalynn’s eyes roved over the grey-green hills to the north which melted slowly away into a barren scree of rock and shrubs. To the south, the dying grass ended in rocky cliffs or at the edges of stony beaches. “Father said that climate and geography can effect a culture. I suppose Karrowyn is a great example of that. Since it isn’t as easy to support life in this province, the people are more careful, more guarded and more tough... Are all outer provinces like this, I wonder?”
“Deep down, the people of the outer provinces aren’t so bad,” Colin smiled at the young girl. “Remember your friend?”
“My friend?” Emalynn blinked confused.
“Chrystyna,” Colin said.
“Oh. She’s,” Emalynn paused, thought for a second before admitting: “She’s not my friend. Not really. Besides, I get the feeling Chrystyna isn’t... well, normal.”
“That,” Colin agreed, “is true.”
“You said we’d arrive at Tawyrs tonight?” Emalynn asked.
“Tired of haystacks and hard grass and the cart?”
“There was that one bed we got from the farmer’s wife.”
“You mean, ‘you got’,” Colin pointed out. “I wasn’t allowed in the house!”
Emalynn, glancing up her mentor who looked more amused than put out, rolled her eyes. No longer the confident groomed assassin she had first met. Dirt, grime, and sweat had long since discolored his plain clothing. Colin’s hair, now unbrushed for two days, looked like a tangled mane. Along his chin scruff had begun to grow longer, giving the man something almost a beard but not quite. Still, Colin Shermore carried with him a raffish, devil-may-care air which Emalynn couldn’t help but admire. A peddler he may have become, Emalynn thought, but there’s a reason why he is able to sell off all the merchandise we have. No farm wife is safe from him.
“Tonight, you’ll have a bed,” Emalynn pointed out.
“If the roads allow,” Colin reminded Emalynn. “If we don’t break another wheel. If the next few farms go smoothly. If the fine weather holds. There are many variables. Best not get your hope up.”
With that, Colin flicked the reins again and their brown mare broke into a jog for a short while before slowing down yet again. Emalynn frowned at the back of the horse’s head. We’re on a mission, lazy legs, she told the horse. Get a move on already!
When the two novice peddlers arrived in Tawyrs late in the evening, it had begun to pour. As the horse made its way past the main gate and the two guards, who had only cursorily checked their papers and the cart, Emalynn felt relieved that within the half hour the two of them would be safe within an inn, warm and cozy and dry.
Despite her excitement about the hope of future comfort, Emalynn took careful note of the main street down which they made their way. A wide cobblestone street, the road bisected the village from the inland gate down to the harbor. Through the slanting sheets of rain, Emalynn caught a glimpse of lights edging down a great hill to a vast expanse of inky blackness – the great bay of water. Judging by the swirl of faint pale dots of yellow and white which bobbed up and down, the ships had all been moored, if not emptied. Do fishermen attempt going out in this rain? Emalynn wondered.
About halfway down the hill, Colin gently tugged on his left rein and guided the mare across the now rather fairly empty thoroughfare into another wide lane. It was slow going since Colin had to keep peering out from under his hood to glance at the various inn and pub signs hanging and swaying in the tempestuous wind which seemed to carry cold to every corner of the desolate town. Eventually, Colin turned Gertha into a wide gated area: an inn’s stable yard.
Two men in oilskin cloaks appeared at Colin’s elbow bawling something about a rainstorm and taking the horse and unsaddling her themselves and getting into the inn as quick as may be. After a short conversation about where the cart would be put – under the stable’s far overhang, it turned out – Colin acquiesced and, pulling Emalynn and his bags from the cart, whisked the two of them indoors.
No sooner had she stepped over the double door’s flagstones, then Emalynn sighed with relief. Shaking off her cloak, the young girl hung it carefully from a free hook by the door, letting the now rather heavy canvas fabric drip dry. Colin, following suit, stretched.
“Here we are at the inn at last. The Sailor’s Hearth! Goodness, I’m soaked through,” he said. “We’d best get by a fire.”
“Do they have baths?” Emalynn asked. “Bathing first, then sitting by a fireplace.”
“I’ll have a talk with the mistress of the inn,” Colin nodded. “You sit here by the fire and wait. What would I say to your mother and dormitory housekeeper if you caught cold while on a mission?”
After nabbing Emalynn a hot mug of tea from a passing maid who involuntarily smiled at Colin’s scruffy open smile, Colin disappeared in the direction of the front desk. Emalynn, sipping on the tea, enjoyed the herbal blend of chamomile while, she supposed, Colin finalized their reservations and arranged for a bath. Do they have baths here? Emalynn wondered. Do they have internal plumbing? I hope so – but Father says not all provinces have such conveniences, so I’d best prepare myself. Well, even if the baths aren’t connected with internal plumbing, I’m sure Colin will get baths for us. He’s that kind of man.
“He’s that kind of man.” That was what Emalynn had begun to think of her mentor on the way to Tawyrs. Flirting with young women, joking and carousing with young men, gossiping glibly with elderly women (and making their aged hearts flutter no doubt), and discussing politics solemnly with old men, Colin seemed to fit in with every group of people he met. Fishermen, farmers (and their wives and daughters), traveling merchants, minstrels, Clerics, tradesmen, unskilled and skilled labourers all seemed drawn to the charismatic assassin. Chameleon skills, a kind of social ability, Emalynn knew were important for an assassin. Yet, with Colin, there was a level of frivolity and appearance of carelessness which the young apprentice found alarming. Although there are benefits to his ability, Emalynn worried, does he have the necessary foundation of level-headedness and seriousness necessary for a mission such as this?
“Everything’s in order.” Colin’s voice suddenly broke into Emalynn’s thoughts.
In surprise, the girl jerked a little and nearly dropped her mug. Taking the black cup of chamomile out of her hand gently, Colin shook his head.
“You’re exhausted,” he said. “I have good news, however. The room I reserved has a small bathroom attached in which is a bath! Internal plumbing. Lords, how I love internal plumbing.”
“Agreed,” Emalynn picked up her bag. “You’d best go first,” she added, following him up the stairs.
“No, no,” Colin lightly protested, “you obviously need your sleep.”
“My baths tend to take longer,” Emalynn pointed out. “I will be fine waiting if it means I can take more time later.”
“How do you know that your bathing time is longer than my bathing time?” asked Colin impishly.
Emalynn stared at the man deadpan.
“All right then,” Colin said. “Bath it is then.”
That night, after a long bath, Emalynn emerge to find that Colin had disappeared. Crawling into her designated bed, Emalynn sighed with relief. The pillows were not too hard, and the mattress was not completely a loss. Remembering her father’s tales about assassin life on the high roads and back provinces of Doran, Emalynn knew that she was hardly the rugged assassin her father had become. At the familiar sense of frustration welling up inside her, Emalynn frowned. I am not there yet, she reminded herself, but I will get there.
I will get there.
“Before we go down for breakfast,” Colin poked his head out of the bathroom, face half covered in white foam, “we need to talk.”
“Talk about our mission?” Emalynn asked.
“Hm,” Colin disappeared for a few minutes. There were a few seconds of silence and then his head reappeared again, a little less covered in foam. “I thought about it, and I think it’s best if we divvy up the information and fact finding a little.”
“I always make sense.” Colin disappeared again. “There’s a map on my bed. Open it up and have a look.”
“Tawyrs,” Emalynn said, unfolding the map. “It really is a small place. Oh – you marked where our inn is already. I’ll try to memorize the town map as best as I can. The most important thing is to remember the inn though.”
“You know, this bay is tiny compared to the Capital’s.”
“Which is why I would call it a cove, really,” Colin said. “You know, the size of a harbor may matter economically speaking - more ships, more fishing, more trading, more visitors and travelers... more money. However...”
“For towns such as these and estates which belong to lesser lords, great harbors are less secure and less inviting to certain kinds of traders and merchants who prefer to remain incognito about certain shipments-”
“Smuggling!” Emalynn interjected, excitement rising up within her.
“Smuggling,” nodded Colin. “I will be looking into that since Tawyrs has been connected to such activities before.”
“Does Lord Sadon know of Tawyrs smuggling reputation?”
“Undoubtedly,” Colin said. “The question is whether he approves or not. So, you, Emalynn, will get as much information as you can about Lord Sadon, Lord Sadon’s family, and his activities. Remember your back story.”
“We are peddling cousins who are doing a circuit for our boring uncle who has no soul,” Emalynn sighed. “I remember. You said to keep the back story simple, so it’s simple to remember.”
“Hm,” Colin eyed Emalynn. “Let’s go get coffee.”
After two cups of coffee, two eggs, two pieces of toast and four slices of well-done bacon, Emalynn felt more like a human and less like an early morning ghoul. During the meal, Colin struck up conversation with two traveling academics (who were apparently researching some sort of fauna) and a visiting mother who had come to see how her youngest son was settling in with his young wife. Two serving maids as well as the inn’s Mistress kept a steady stream of victuals coming out of the kitchen,
The amount of gossip and information passing around the room was dizzying, yet Colin seemed to be able to keep up with the influx of news. Thieves had been sighted up on the northern highway; the Kolson family lost two boats in the storm the night before; sporadic rain was expected for the rest of the week; a certain Lady Matilde was returning from her biannual short family visit to the Capital within three days’ time, and the Lisle twins had gotten the pox.
After the two professors and the chatty mother had left, Colin rejoined Emalynn and sighed happily, helping himself to another mug of coffee.
“Lord Sadon is in town,” he said.
Be careful then, Emalynn recognized the unspoken command. She nodded. Colin, leaning forward, grabbed another slice of toast passing by on a tray and then jerked his head toward the main entrance.
“You notice the stable boy?”
“The scrawny one with black hair and green eyes who came in and out of the dining room three times?” Emalynn asked. “Yes. I noticed.”
“That’d be a great place to start,” Colin said. “Chat him up a bit.”
“Chat him up?” Emalynn asked, wondering if she had understood Colin correctly.
“Well, he’s a young man. You are a young woman,” Colin pointed out and then winked. “I’m sure you can figure out how to get him talking. It should be easy. Young people your age are usually chatty and know a lot more than they ought.”
To the master-in-training, Emalynn did not look so impressed.
“I’d best go,” Colin added hurriedly, snagging an apple as he rose to his feet. “You seem to know what you are doing. Remember to relax and have fun as well.”
With that, Colin disappeared into the faint sunlight which streamed in the wide open entrance. Finishing up her mug of coffee carefully and watching the serving maid come around to retrieve the dirty dishes, Emalynn reviewed what Colin had suggested and sighed.
Relax and have fun? This is a mission!
Wandering outside, Emalynn forced herself to relax and look more like a curious visitor than an assassin’s apprentice completing a reconnaissance mission. Happily, it was not raining outside; although, the sun could barely be seen from behind the dirty-looking clouds which scudded overhead. Cast in a grey light, the world of Tawyrs looked unappealing. At least there isn’t a downpour, Emalynn reminded herself.
Finding Gerthe’s stall wasn’t so difficult since few people seemed to be staying at the inn. Noting that the mare had been well cared for, Emalynn fed the brown horse some sugar, patted her nose gingerly and looked around for the stable boy. Horses and Emalynn did not go well together. It was not merely a matter of temperament. Allergies plagued Emalynn whenever she approached a horse. Already, she could feel her nose and eyes start to burn and itch.
Where is that boy? She grumped to herself and then looked up, relieved, as her prey turned the corner. Stepping away from Gerthe’s stall and hoping that her face looked more excited and interested than ill and predatory, Emalynn advanced toward the boy with a smile. He’s not that bad, Emalynn, she told herself, eyeing the boy’s tall frame, freshly scrubbed face, and suddenly neatly combed hair.
“Thank you for taking care of Gerthe,” Emalynn smiled and nodded in greeting. “She looks like she’s really enjoying her stay at the stable. We’ve been on the road for quite a long time, so I’m glad we have the chance to rest here at Tawyrs.”
“It’s your first time here, right?” the boy set the bucket he had been carrying aside rather absent-mindedly.
“Yes. I just arrived last night after five days on the road peddling,” Emalynn lied glibly.
“Oh, right. You came in last night then. I saw you with that guy at breakfast...” The boy trailed off. “You guys are....?”
Emalynn gave the stable hand a coy smile (but inwardly she giggled). Ha, she thought, here we go – hook, line and sinker.
“Cousin,” she assured him airily. “Colin’s, my father’s brother’s eldest son. He’s been peddling for quite some time, so my family thought it would be best if I gained experience traveling with him.”
“Ahhh, that makes sense.” The young man looked relieved.
“In fact, since we came in so late last night, I’ve not yet been able to find out where or if we register with Lord...” Emalynn trailed off, widening her eyes and hoping the stable boy would provide the necessary information.
“Oh! Yes! Lord Sadon. He is the master of these lands – up into the highlands and down to the shores. Peddlers and traveling merchants usually apply to the Steward of the House, especially since Lady Matilde only receives certain important visitors and all. Lord Sadon is busy up in the highlands today, I believe. I think Father mentioned it last night...” The boy frowned in thought. “Lady Matilde is returning within the week...”
Lady Matilde is Lord Sadon’s wife? Emalynn remembered the gossip she had heard earlier that morning at the breakfast table.
“So, we register with a Steward if we are to do business in Tawyrs... None of his sons are here?”
“Oh, no,” the stable hand leaned back against a stall’s door and absently scratched another horse’s nose. “Lord Sadon and Lady Matilde don’t have any children. No sons, nor daughters neither.”
“I see,” Emalynn replied, injecting a tone of sympathy into her voice. “How sad! Who on earth will inherit the estate then when he passes? Back home, I heard that in such circumstances, estates are usually allotted by the Crown to favored minor nobles.”
“Well,” the stable boy sighed and rolled his eyes. “There is someone. He’s not that bad but Mother says it’s a bother for us because this nephew from the Capital – Master Barto – that would be Lord Sadon’s younger brother – had a son. That would be Master Taryth. He comes to visit on occasion, but since he is some guild master, he’s rarely here, and Mother worries that he will know nothing about Karrowyn.”
“Yes, I suppose, but Father says that Master Taryth is a responsible man, and that it could be worse.”
“Nevertheless, change can be difficult,” Emalynn said. “Is Master Taryth very different from Lord Sadon?”
“I don’t know much of Master Taryth – but Father says that Lord Sadon is a tough man like the rocky cliffs of Karrowyn. D’you think you will see Lord Sadon whilst you are here?”
“Well, since we are mere peddlers, I should think we won’t... Perhaps from afar, we will glimpse him. What does he look like?” Emalynn looked at the boy as though he was the fount of all wisdom, upon which the boy swelled with pride visibly and proceeded to tell her in detail what Lord Sadon looked like.
According to the stable boy, Lord Sadon was tall and muscled, with steely eyes, a proud beak of a nose, and a grey-white grizzled hair and beard. Hard-bitten and gruff, Lord Sadon did not look like the powdered men of the Capital. He sounds more like a fisherman, Emalynn decided. A pragmatic man then. Lord Sadon was given to wearing quality, if sober, clothing. His wardrobe consisted of blacks, dark greens, navies, and browns. So he is a man of pride. His words and accent were cultured but sometimes a salty word would slip out. Also, forty some years ago, Lord Sadon married the beautiful Lady Matilde of the Upper Court. A man of the lower aristocracy yet with ambitions, having married above his status.
“Well,” Emalynn said with another coy smile, “it sounds like you know a lot about Lord Sadon.”
“Umm...” The stable boy blushed and pushed his toe around in the dirt. “He resides in Tawyrs for much of the year.”
“He does not visit the Capital often?”
“No, Father says that Lord Sadon is very...” The adolescent boy frowned. “I forget what he said, but it was something about invessing...”
“Lord Sadon is very invested in his estate?” hazarded Emalynn.
“Yes! Something like that,” the boy grinned at Emalynn. “For a peddler’s daughter, you sure know a lot of big words.”
“Well,” Emalynn hedged, thinking fast. “It’s my Uncle who’s a peddler. My Father and Mother live near the Capital and are looking into different trade options for my future.”
“You could always work at an inn like The Sailor’s Hearth.”
“The Sailor’s... Oh!” Emalynn realized that the stable boy was referring to the inn. “Hm, well, I never imagined myself working at an inn,” Emalynn said honestly.
“Tawyrs always has work of many kinds for willing hands.” Here, the stable hand edged closer to Emalynn, who somehow managed to not step back.
“If that’s true,” Emalynn replied quickly, “I’d best look around. Perhaps I’ll see you later,” she added, deciding not to burn her bridges quite yet. Turning, she flashed the adolescent work hand a sweet smile before taking a few steps forward. Then, as if hesitating, Emalynn looked back. “Who should I thank for being so welcoming and helpful?”
“Oh – ah – ha-” stuttered the young man, blushing red. “I’m Lyle. Lyle Spence.”
“Well, Lyle Spence,” Emalynn said. “Perhaps I’ll see you around.”
She did not tell him her name.
That night, Colin sat down with Emalynn after a hearty dinner of beef stew and buttered bread for a debriefing. Emalynn, after giving a verbal report – of which Colin took notes – sat with her master-in-training and worked on a short written report as per his instructions. Watching Emalynn focus intensely on the paper set before her, the young man shook his head. The young woman had given him a quick verbal briefing in their room before dinner arrived. Apparently, she had managed to interview not only the stable hand and a maid but also a fishwife at the marketplace and a retired carpenter. The maid, a friendly girl called Maddie who worked at The Sailor’s Hearth, had turned out to be a valuable source of information due to the fact her mother worked up at what the local’s called ‘the Main House’.
′Quite a dedicated apprentice. For some reason,′ Colin wrote down in his second journal which he was to hand into his instructor for the program, ′my apprentice finds great joy in the mundane tasks of the assassin. Some would call this thoroughness. Others would call it the usual excited innocence of youthful apprentices. I think there is something else at play. Soon enough, some would say, Emalynn will come to realize the tediousness of such chores. However, I am not entirely sure if this is true as I remember my own early days as an apprentice. Goodness! I was rapscallion if there ever was one wearing the uniform. Despite my dedication to the craft, I had never approached required assignments and reports with such enthusiasm.′
Setting aside his program’s journal, Colin reread what he had written in his small notebook and began writing his own report.
From the clues given in the assignment as well as the ones gathered by the Busbys, Darlton, and another informant, the assassination request originated from the dockyard at Tawyrs. A man called Ulston, who has lived at Tawyrs all of his life, requested for the assassination of the local lord, Sadon, due to the negative impact of the illicit activities happening in Tawyrs. Supposedly, smuggling operations have been encouraged and/or supported by Lord Sadon and his Steward in hopes of propping up the poor economy of Lord Sadon’s estate. Ulston, taking part in drug smuggling, told me that drugs from Gojin (which is located on the Far East Continent) pass through the town after being moved from the island just off the coast. As a result of drug use, Ulston’s father died. The old man apparently walked off the cliff, which I thought was rather sad and probably explains Ulston’s betrayal on some level. Ulston himself does not seem to be blindly vengeful. He does seem bitter and cynical, as is normal considering his life and situation, but overall, he holds no grudges or malignant designs against the Lady Matilde (who visited Ulston upon his father’s death to offer condolences), the heir (who is said to be currently living in the Capital) or the household. Tomorrow night, my apprentice and I will observe a shipment which should be arriving into the town from the island, according to Ulston. After verifying the smuggling operation, Emalynn and I will return to the Capital. In summary, if Lord Sadon is indeed a key agent within the drug smuggling ring, which has so far eluded the Capital’s security task force, then an assassination may be in order...
By the time Colin was done, Emalynn had finished writing her report, after which she brushed her teeth, went to bed, and promptly fell asleep. Looking at the bush of brown curls which poked over the top of the thick quilt, Colin sighed. Folding his papers and hers together, he slid the small packet into his personal satchel which he stowed away beneath his pillow before he too went to sleep.
The pair of undercover assassins spent the following day walking around town and memorizing the important locations of town hall, the justice court and the various guild markets. As they strolled about the small town, Emalynn saw what Lyle had meant. Despite it’s difficult location, banded as it was by the rocky highlands and the tempestuous sea, Tawyrs was a well-run estate. Colin, upon meeting Lord Sadon’s Stewart and reassuring the man they did not intend to set up shop, muttered to Emalynn something about “strict management” and “staying on guard”.
At those words, Emalynn’s eyes inadvertently flitted upward to the western cliff where the manor spread, hewn out of the cliff itself. Its grey walls looked more like a castle than a mansion; its wide towers more menacing than the house Emalynn had originally envisioned.
“It oversees the whole valley,” Emalynn said quietly. “It’s as if he is watching us.”
“A little creepy,” Colin agreed in a low voice as the two strolled away from the Steward’s meeting room in the Town Hall. “Yet, understandable. They are far from the Capital and open to attack from the sea. One needs to consider these kinds of eventualities. So, in a way, it’s a rather secure position to take - quite defensible. You ready for tonight?”
“Yes,” Emalynn said, mentally reviewing her list of things to wear.
“Why did I know you were going to say that?”
Upon the stroke of midnight, Colin and Emalynn opened the window, secured the hook Colin had packed, and, soundlessly scaling down the wall like black spiders, reached the ground safely. Their boots, muffled by the standard Assassin black tread, and their dark clothing, entirely composed of lightweight cotton which allowed easy movement, allowed them to slip easily from shadow to shadow. With her own rope tied securely around her chest (for “just in case”), Emalynn followed Colin’s instructions to the letter as she silently traced his movements down the back street and to a fisherman’s home.
Remembering the first section of the Assassin’s Code she had begun to memorize for the first quarter of the school year, Emalynn told herself: You are anonymous. ′We move in the shadows when others walk in the light, working in obscurity to preserve life. Our faceless, nameless selves are safety.′ With that she glanced upward, checked that the clouds continued to cloak the moonlight, and followed Colin up the side of the fisherman’s house to the roof, keeping her footfalls as light as possible.
Flicking his fingers, Colin gave Emalynn the standard hand signal for ‘remember the drill’. Emalynn nodded and they were off, lightly leaping from roof to roof where the houses were close enough; balancing on narrow beams between stores and stalls, which during the day were filled with fish and other sea creatures; scaling stone walls and piles of timber, and carefully making their way down the east side of town beneath the cliffs.
Eventually, Colin and Emalynn reached a small back alley which led down to a tiny grove of trees. Colin beckoned again to Emalynn and together the two headed further eastward, circumventing the tiny grove of trees to make their way to a small cliff overlooking a stony beach. Looking ahead, Emalynn’s mouth formed an ‘o’ of realization – the two assassins were overlooking the easternmost portion of the small harbor with an island directly in sight. The perpetual thin grey clouds barely allowed moonlight, giving the entire world a sickly hue. Ahead, the island was little more than a dark blur on the horizon, but, like a strand of pearls, lights winked and bobbed as ships moved soundlessly from the island to the shore.
It isn’t that silent, Emalynn thought, not really. It just seems so quiet here as compared to what the town was like earlier in the day. She glanced down at the stony beach where a group of dark figures had assembled.
“Some less scrupulous merchants,” Colin had said earlier that evening in their room, “are probably in on it, but having them arrested would be useless. The trade will go on.”
“So, why take out Lord Sadon then?” Emalynn had wondered aloud.
“I am not entirely sure,” Colin had admitted. “Will it do any good? Or is this a matter of vengeance? Ulston has an axe to grind for certain.”
“We are not here to commit acts of vengeance.”
“No,” Colin had sighed. “No, we are not.”
Recalling the conversation, Emalynn frowned. So, there is smuggling of some sort then. Drugs might be part of it. I know Father has mentioned drugs once or twice before... Something he said about a new kind of drug coming into the Capital. Maybe it starts here!
Feeling excitement rising within her, Emalynn found it hard to stay calm, but the young girl had long practiced her abilities to sit (or lie) still. So, she did. Eventually, Colin, after noting the boats which arrived at the shore, motioned to Emalynn, and the two melted back into the shadows and returned to the inn.
Their mission was done.
“Just in case”, the standard excuse used by assassins to carry rope, covers a plethora of meanings mainly derived from the famous short treatise, The Assassin’s Life, written by the infamous assassin of the 1700s, Creighton Digby-Digby. “Carrying rope, although physically ungainly and visually unsightly, remains the mainstay of the assassin’s life. I always tie one about my chest whilst carrying out my missions, just in case.” Digby-Digby went on to explain all of the scenarios wherein rope may save a life or aid in successfully carrying out a mission. Examples include: when climbing cliffs (or houses or walls or anything that can be or must be climbed), when on reconnaissance (for those moments where you have to lasso or tie up a guard), when completing missions, and so on. Second Year students are encouraged to come up with their own ideas on how to use the rope they are given.
All of the above physical activity, I assure you, was successfully maneuvered thanks to the judicious use of rope. See above footnote.