“How long are you going to keep this up?” Shakes her head, trying to move a fold of the black sack out of her eye. Can’t see, but that’s the point. From the moment they pulled her into the alley and threw the bag over her head she’s been listening, feeling, smelling. Paying attention to every detail.
“Quiet,” says Bug. She has no idea what his real name is, but has been calling him Bug in her head. Has a way of sucking on his saliva after he speaks that sounds wavering chitinous wings.
Most of it went as she’d expected. First they dragged her deeper into the alley, bound her hands, secured the bag in place. A wagon arrived and she was shoved inside. They didn’t travel far, a couple blocks. They stopped next to one of the Orzhov’s smaller basilica’s, a door was opened, and she’s been walking since. An assortment of scents have come and gone. Spices, flowers, fish and meat. Market smells. Then came heat on her face, the ringing of metal being pounded, a gruff voice yelling for more heat. Soon after came cows mooing, the bleating of sheep, and the requisite smells.
She continues for another half-hour. Her senses given a grand tour of Ravnica streets, back alleys, and shops. It’s all quite elaborate. A hand stops her, guides her to a chair. A door is flung open. Three sets of feet leave, Bug and his two pals, and a single set enters. The door closes.
“Tell me where you are.” Their voice is a dozen at once, all and none. Full as Selesnya gardens, malice as subtle as a Rakdos stage, clean as a Simic lab.
“Two blocks from where you found me. In a room connected to Glasshall Basilica.”
The bag is pulled from her head. “Well done. Looks like my scouts have lost their edge,” they say. Hooded face hidden from view. Behind the figure sits the wood-framed treadmill with its leather belt she spent the last hour on. Behind that is a table of jars and vials—all the things she smelled.
They shrug, “Simple magic.”
She nods. “Now what?”
“One more question.”
“And where is the Watery Grave?”
Her eyes narrow, she scans the room. It can’t be…It seems too simple. “Right here.” She says.
The room begins to fade, a cloud of smoke caught in a stiff breeze. The walls vanish, the door, the floor—all gone. Only the table of jars and the treadmill remain, sitting on a brickwork patch surrounded by water.
Her interviewer stands, offers their hand. “Now here’s a question that’ll tickle the back of your head. When did you get here?" they give her hand a squeeze. “Don’t think about it too hard, come. I’ll show you around.”