43 v) Fassn’s silk glove slips

Fassn’s silk glove slips. Fassn himself lets out a little noise of delight as he descends another few millimetres. The chain of human figures struggles and shakes as he waves his finger at the goo. Abia watches impassively nearby.

Fassn’s voice rises to a help as his bare finger skims the brown sludge’s surface. It’s instantly corrosive and the smell of burning skin and collagen rises from the pit.

“Can I drop him now?” Cang asks.

“Okay,” Fassn says, dipping his finger into his mouth to savour the horrible taste. “Old Ajralan has had his fill.” Cang and Shyan grunt as they pull him up, coupled with sounds of moist lip smacking.

When they’re sprawled, fatigued, on the tile, Cang holds open a hand to Fassn, palm up. Fassn tosses him a coin.