We sailed our way out of the narrow straits and into the open sea. No one minded at all leaving that string of islands behind.
Rumble and I kept up our duties about the ship. Merlin joined one or the other of us as the need arose, and even took a watch himself. But he never climbed the rigging. He had his own way of making the sails bend to his will.
Our dragon riders continued to take turns dropping in. When it came Gibley’s turn he asked us if we could do without his presence. He thought that he and Conjil would forgo accompanying us all the way to Corbelin since it seemed their being here was rather superfluous. As for Clemjil, the goblin decided not to take the young dragon with him. After all he had been released by his uncle to be a protector of the bell in the repository. Merlin concurred and we assembled to bid our friend a fond farewell.
Gibley flew by Dunfallon and Noralei to say goodbye before he and Conjil left for the east and the canyonlands.
The sun was just going down as I came up for my watch when Nora hailed me from over the ship’s side. He barely could get the words out as he excitedly reported that one of the prisoners was trying to escape.
I leaned over the rail and saw that the Caretaker has hanging halfway out – caught in the porthole three sizes too small for him. For five wingbeats I considered leaving him there, but when Merlin checked on him, he yanked him back inside the cabin and sealed the porthole.
I made sure the renegade queen was still under lock and spell before returning to my watch.