39 iii) Cang’s reluctant to give up his vest for laundering

Cang’s reluctant to give up his vest for laundering, lest its many secret pockets be discovered with their dozens of hidden coins. Still, Cang’s wedged them in there so effectively that even as Montague and his assistants scrub on the washboard, no telltale trebly clink of metal alerts them to the coins’ presence.

That is, until the glowing sphere, still trailing the gang like a curious bird, swirls around the sodden vest, dipping in and out of the bubbles and confusing Montague’s assistants. The sphere performs tight little corkscrews around the secret pockets while Cang glares from afar. As one of the assistants begins prodding a pocket, Cang barks a warning from across the room.

39 ii) “Nevermind. Something Master Davit used to say.”

“Nevermind. Something Master Davit used to say. Not important,” Shyan says.

For the next couple of hours, Montague, alongside a couple of dimple-cheeked helpers who seemed to emerge from the cabinets, and wore tiny, pointy green shoes, laundered the gang’s clothes. Weeks of sweat and grime flow with the water, leaving their simple garments fresh and clean.

This with the exception of Fassn of course, who’s still snoozing lightly on the floor, his mismatched garments and armour caked with filth and memories.