He blinked at me, trying to make sure he wasn’t hallucinating.

“L-Li?” he stuttered, his voice breaking. I bent down to start picking the locks at his wrists. The couple times I brushed against his hand made me cringe; he was clammy & trembling violently. The cuffs sprang open, & I went to work on the ankles. Cricket lowered his hands from above his head slowly, staring at them in disbelief as he sat up.

“Li, you honestly have no idea how happy I am to see you,” he whispered. I put my finger to his lips.

“Shh. Master & I will get you out of here.”

The ankle cuffs sprang open as the door to the chamber creaked open. Cricket & I froze.

It was Lin.

I rose guiltily as she entered. Her eyes darted from Cricket, to her knocked-out master, then finally rested on me.

“Lin, I can explain…” I began hastily, but she put her finger to my lips, a trace of a smile playing with her mouth.

“I can guess what’s going on,” she whispered. “Now, you guys need help getting out of here in one piece?”

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