The cold water from the walls was seeping through Geris’s cloak, his torch was sputtering in the draft. When Derral had suggested that they go adventuring, Geris had not really expected cold, wet, dark passageways; never being dry. No that had not been his expectation at all. He had been looking forward to ancient temples, treasure beyond imagining, heroic deeds and perhaps the odd hapless maiden, but nothing had prepared him for reality. He shifted his weight, trying to rest his aching legs; not that it really helped. There was no part of his body that was not soaked and he was fairly sure that he would have given anything to be in a hot bath instead.

The sound of footsteps approaching up the tunnel snapped Geris out of his damp-based melancholia. He closed his hand around the hilt of his sword and raised his shield, waiting, ready for whoever was approaching.

As the approaching torchlight started to get closer, Geris tensed up, trying to steel his nerve. He had been in fights before, but that was no comfort.