Chapter Forty-One

By Douglas E. Gogerty

King Thorbjorn sat in his cell. He had not wanted to spend any more time in the jail, but the officials would not let him leave. His son posted his bail, but there was danger outside. The city officials did not want an all out riot. Hence, the King had to stay in his jail cell.

He was sleeping uneasily when someone entered his cell. He awoke with a start.

"Who is it? Who is there?" the King asked.

"I just came in to let you go," the stranger stated.


"The crowd has dispersed for the evening, and if you would like to leave..."

"If? I will gather my men and go!"

"We cannot let you all go at once. We will need to release you and your entourage one at time."

"What? Why?"

"We do not wish to raise suspicion. Letting you go all at once would be very noticeable."

"You are probably right about that."

"We will let you go, and then a few minutes later another member of your group...."

"I would rather go second or third."

"There is no time to argue! Are you going or not?"

"I am going! I am going!"

The King exited the jail warily. He felt something was wrong, but he had desperately wanted to leave his cell. Thus, he carefully walked out into the darkness. Every moving shadow made him jump. He saw his enemies behind every tree and bush.

However, he knew he had to find a place to meet with his entourage as they left the jail. Therefore, he had to stay close to the exit. At the very least, he needed to be able to see the door. He needed to find some place he could watch his group exit.

He slowly and carefully searched for a spot to sit. He snuck from tree to tree and bush to bush until he found a spot he liked. It had a good view of the door and it held plenty of cover. The King sat and began watching to door.

He watched for a number of minutes. However, his eyes were getting heavy. After all, it was in the middle of the night. He had not slept well for days. Thus, watching the door became a great chore. He kept nodding off, and yet no one else came out. Eventually, he fell asleep.

The King awoke with a start. A crowd had started to gather in the predawn hours. He wondered where his entourage had gone. Certainly, they would have looked around for him. While his spot concealed him well, his group should have found him. Nonetheless, they should be around somewhere.

He thought about staying in his hiding spot. It concealed him well. However, the idea of spending the entire day there did not appeal to him. He guessed that the protesters would not recognize him, so he could at least blend in with them.

He went into the group that was milling around. They offered him some coffee, which the King welcomed. No one paid any special attention to him. He was just another protester in their eyes. Thus, he milled around as well, looking for hidden members of his party. He found none. His anxiousness to leave made him a susceptible to the trap he walked into.

Without his guard, the King was vulnerable to any of his many enemies. Further, he was unarmed. The government had confiscated his weapons. Therefore, he was unarmed and unprotected. Any of his enemies could walk up to him and kill him. That is, except for the crowd. He felt somewhat safe in the gathering crowd. Not to mention, it was a good hiding place.

The King had people camouflage. He was just another face in the crowd. Further, who would look for him in a group protesting him? In addition, he thought he would be able to spot people who did not belong with the protesting group. If someone were looking in the bushes around the courthouse, they would be people to watch. Hence, the King could avoid them.

Nonetheless, he was in a difficult spot. Chances are that someone was watching the roads. A solitary man wandering around would bring unwanted attention to him. That would bring certain death. Thus, he would have to stick with the crowd for now. At the very least, he would have to wait for the government to release his group. However, when would that happen? It could be weeks. He did not believe that he could not hold out that long.

Further, he had no money or food. Could he survive on free coffee? Perhaps he would also get a sandwich or some other kind of food. All of this depended upon the gathering crowd -- furthering his instinct to stick with them. Nonetheless, he knew he was in deep trouble. If only he was not in such a hurry to exit the jail.

Day had broken and there was a large crowd gathered. They chanted slogans, and the King joined them. He was just another anti-monarchy protester. He even carried a sign protesting tyranny. He blended in with the crowd well. He even got some food for his efforts. His plan was working.

Further, he did not see anyone suspicious poking around the grounds. Thus, he concluded that they were waiting for him along the road. He was safe as long as he blended in with the crowd.

The day wore on, and he kept up his facade. He became hoarse from all of the shouting that he did. He bonded with a group that had been there since the predawn hours. They took good care of him. He ate well. The group accepted him as one of their number. Furthermore, they stayed in the middle of the pack. Thus, he did not have to sit on the fringes.

The King felt confident that his plan worked. He was thinking that he would make it until nightfall. That would present new challenges but nothing insurmountable. For the first time in a long time, he felt slightly at ease. It was the first plan to have worked in quite a while.

The evening was drawing close, and the protesters began to thin out. He may have let his guard down as someone walked up to him and whispered in his ear. Further, the voiced called the King sire. He had been found out. Now there was trouble.

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This page contains a single entry by Douglas Gogerty published on October 10, 2010 5:21 PM.

"Texas Wildfire" - Chapter 26 was the previous entry in this blog.

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