She opened her eyes slowly and concentrated on the blurry sight of her toes. Her hair fell in front of her face like damp curtains. Her wrists throbbed, the dull chafing of the ropes prying its way more prominently to the centre of her attention. She let out a little moan. There were people talking softly, not far away.
The words were louder than the words before. They were followed by movement, shoes shuffling on stones, fabric rubbing on skin. There was a litle thud of wood on wood. Cup on table?
She felt the air move around her as they came closer. There was something sticky on her temple. Blood? Probably.
Someone lifted her chin, a hand pushed back her hair. She looked up and stared into the man’s hazels for a split second, before casting her eyes back down. The weight of her body strained against the ropes, as her legs would not fully support it.
“Where is the child?” The man asked.
She gave no response. Someone passed the man a bucket. She could just make out the wooden container changing hands. He lifted it and poured its contents out on her head. Gallons of freezing water gushed over her. She stiffened and gasped. Her soaked tresses stuck to her face and neck, the dirty fabric of her robe clung to her body.
“Where is the child?” The man asked, louder this time. Impatiently.
She wanted to say her child was dead, that she had thrown it to the waves, but her voice stuck in her throat, her breath taken by the harsh, wet cold.
She heard the sound of steel, rattling keys, rapid footsteps echoing through tunnels. The hinges creaked as the hefty door opened. The man left her and greeted the guard that entered.
“Arian?” he asked.
Arian looked worried. “I’m sorry, Horren. He’s on his way.”
Horren dismissed him with a little nod and turned back to her.
“I’m sorry, girl. It’s out of my hands now.”