Another cut scene of For the Sake of One Lost. Enjoy!
“That’s my slave you’re sitting on!” Djadao's sandals crunched the sand scattered across the pavement, punctuating Pearl's frantic cries for help. “By the gods, you were trying to steal her from me!”
“I prefer the word ‘rescue’.”
“Well, if it isn’t Helmsman Bradley Trey of the Classis Alexandrina, dressed up like an Egyptian!” Djadao laughed and hooked his hands on padded hips. “What are you doing in these parts? Spying for your prefect? I shall petition him and make you pay for your audacity.”
Trey shifted to pin Pearl’s arms and better restrict her movements. “There’s no need to bring the prefect into this. I’m willing to pay you for her.” A hot blast of wind peppered him with sand, and his wig shielded his eyes.
Djadao wiped his face and snorted. “Now that you’ve been caught! She’s not for sale.”
“Name your price.” He moved Pearl’s wrists to one hand and fumbled with a cloth pouch at his waist. She was strong for a girl. He forced her arms down to her backside, trying to keep from hurting her.
“I plan to sell this girl to your prefect for ten gold aurei! Hardly within a helmsman’s budget.”
Trey put the pouch between his teeth and used his free hand to draw several gold coins from it. “You said ten gold aurei?”
The fat man’s beady eyes sparkled at the sight of the gold. “Give me twenty and she’s yours. It is fitting, yes? You pay double the price for the pain you have caused me!”
“Twenty it is, then," Trey mumbled through his clenched teeth, tossing the coins in the sand between them. A goat bleated.
Djadao frowned. “What is the girl to you that you’re willing to pay so much for her? Did you know that she has red hair?” He reached for Pearl’s wig.
Trey caught his hand, letting the purse drop from his mouth. “Yes, I know that she has red hair.”
Djadao grunted and snatched his hand back. “Red-haired people are evil because they are favored by Set. Aren’t you afraid that she may be a witch or a devil worshipper?”
“No, I’m not. That’s Egyptian superstition, and as you so cleverly deduced, I am not an Egyptian.”
“May the gods overlook your arrogance.”
“And your greed.” Trey retrieved his purse.
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