I lay on the moist floor, almost defeated. Was the world against me?
Steady, Xiaoli, I thought to myself. Stewing isn’t going to make things better. I took a deep breath. That’s better. Now, what was it that Master has told you time and time again?
Well, there were many answers to that question. But I thought “comb your hair” wouldn’t work in this situation.
My eyes widened in realization. Of course!
“I knew you’d get to it at some point,” Master mused. I sat up to look at him, a small grin on his face. “I think you just needed a bit of help.”
I smiled. “No wonder they say you’re the best.” I stood up as Master crouched on the floor once more.
I will find the opening, I repeated to myself. I scanned the ceiling.
There it was! The perfect handhold! I took a deep breath, perched on Master’s back, and reached for it.
It gave with my hand!
I fell to the floor, surprised.
I looked up, to be even further surprised.
There was an opening in the ceiling!
Cricket still had a chance!