The Girl in Cell 3 (Triple Witching Hour)

Every day SABLE talks to her knight in shining armor, EREN. She says sweet words, tugging at his heart, hoping to steal it. But there is always a barrier between them - a prison cell door. EREN has struck a deal: keep her locked up and his little brother will be out of harms way.

Her cell is inescapable and her placement on death row rises fast. She aims to seduce him and have him break her out. But when truths and lies become one, can she deceive his heart without breaking her own?

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63. Chapter 62 - Marcus

Marcus left the inn and headed towards the barracks. He passed by the marketplace which only had a few merchants left, all busy packing up their goods for the day. The sun was bleeding at the horizon, making way for the silver night. A few children played at the fountain in the middle of the marketplace, chasing each other, shouting, creating memories that they would later remember when they were adults. 


His heart beat fast and the forged letter pulsed under his armor — as though it were his second heart. A second heart with a moral code of its own.


He could still turn back. Nothing had been done yet. Right now he was just a young knight, walking the streets after his supper, taking in the tranquility of the early evening before heading to bed so that he could rise again the next day to protect king and country. 


Tomorrow his king could call upon him. Tomorrow when he arrived at the barracks, he would receive an order that all non-essential forces at the barracks would be mobilized to the front line for a final assault on the enemy lines — a glorious battle that would secure the surrender of the Eisen Kingdom. He would follow that order, pack his things and leave King’s Pride. And then — the witch with the golden eyes in the barracks would only remain as a bittersweet memory as he will try and fail to survive on the battlefield. He will receive a burial that no one will attend, a medal he will never wear and a promotion he will never enjoy.


Marcus gazed up at the sky. The moon had taken its throne and it glowed with a divine dignity he had never noticed before. The night was long and would be longer still. 


He arrived at the barracks. He reviewed his plan one more time. It worked perfectly — in his mind. But then again, every commander had a victorious battle plan in his minds and yet there could be only one winner. 


Go downstairs to the prison on the lowest level where Svenja was originally imprisoned. Retrieve the keys from the master key cabinet. Show the order if anyone questions him. Sigh and complain about Eren and Reinhard being slave driving bastards if anyone asked him why he was still working. Smile at whatever responses he receives in return. Salute and head back up. Go to the solitary prison cells. If there is a guard, which there likely will be, then tell the guard that he has been dismissed and that he can go home. Show him the order if he does not leave immediately. If there are any other complications — Marcus touches his sword hilt. 


He swallowed. Would it come to this? Would he be willing to kill a brother for the sake of a witch?


Men were fools after all. 


He entered. Salute and click of heels. 


“I thought you went home, Marcus.”


“Yes...but Reinhard is such a slave driving bastard, I think he wants to work me to death before I head to the battlefield.”


Laughter. A good joke. Every knight felt this way. No more explanations were needed. 


He headed down the stairs. Touched his breast pocket. Good — the letter was still there. He reached the lowest level. Salute the guards who stood at the door. 


“Marcus, what are you doing here? Go home.” 


“Yes...but Reinhard is such a slave driving bastard, I think he wants to work me to death before I head to the battlefield.”


Laughter. A good joke. Every knight felt this way. One more explanation was needed. 


“I need the keys,” Marcus said. “Reinhard gave me the order to transfer some witches from solitary cells.” 


The guard opened the key cabinet and the keys jingled. Music of freedom. 


“Where are you transferring the witches?” the guard asked. The keys were still in his hands. 


Marcus breathed. Where? He said, “To the upstairs office. I think Reinhard wants to interrogate a witch,” and displayed the palm of his hand, ready to receive, his fingers pulsing with anxiety. 


The guard gave him the keys. Reinhard had done that before. 


Marcus closed his fingers around the keys as though they were more precious than his life. More precious than anything else in the world. 


Salute and click heels. See you tomorrow. Yes, see you tomorrow. 


Taking deep breaths, Marcus headed up the stairs. For the first time, he had lied to brothers in uniform. He had done it so naturally that it frightened him. He had always thought of himself as an honorable man. 


He reached the upper level prison for solitary cells. Open the door. A guard was there. Marcus cursed under his breath. Salute and click heels. 


“Marcus?” the guard asked. “You are still working?” 


“Yes...but Reinhard is such a slave driving bastard, I think he wants to work me to death before I head to the battlefield.”


Laughter. A good joke. Every knight felt this way. But this wasn’t good enough. 


“You’ve been assigned guard duty at the solitary cells?” the guard asked. Pity in his voice.


“Yes.” 


“But usually you are downstairs.” 


“Just tonight, I’ve been ordered to come here. You can go home. I’m also supposed to transfer a witch to the upstairs offices for interrogation.” 


The guard appeared relieved upon hearing that he could go home. He could go back and sleep with his beloved. 


“Well, all right,” he said. “You can take care of things here. I’ll just go to Reinhard and tell him that I will be back tomorrow night.” 


Marcus opened his mouth; he should have said that there was no need for that, offer to take care of that for him, or just give him a pat on his back and shake his head. But Marcus was afraid. His heart was ready to burst. He feared that if he said anything more, then the guard might grow suspicious. So he said nothing. And he knew that this would doom him.
 


Salute and click heels. The guard left and Marcus could hear his steady footsteps echo up the stairs, the sound of each new step growing fainter, each step a moment of time lost. 


Marcus forced himself to move. Nothing was lost yet. It would take a bit of time for the man to reach Reinhard’s office. 


He went to Svenja’s cell. 

 

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