In the light of the half moon the forest had crisp edges. Everything seemed more real, more three dimensional than it had in the flat light of midday.
Helena drew in a quiet breath, let her toes explore the roots under her feet. The thin pliant leather of her forest boots were designed for this, quiet movement. She crept forward, so smooth and silent that a mouse blinked sleepily at her and didn't even twitch his whiskers when she stepped over him.
The silence was key for at least fifty more yards. In the trees around she could hear the small coos and rustles that signalled the filbains were sleeping yet. If one of these spy system birds awoke and began calling, all would be lost. She'd be back at the school, locked away for five more years, wasting time on religious studies while at home, her family fought and were slaughtered.
Twenty five more yards. The clearing was ahead, and then the wall, and then freedom where she could run like the wind, reclaim her bow and sword, and fly home.
The clearing was the most dangerous part. Here she could not melt into the shadows, and the ground was seeded with concussive devices. She could be an hour getting past and she must not be seen. Must not make a false move.
Before heading to the clearing, she paused to drink from her canteen, eat a piece of lamb jerky and prepare herself.
The clearing. Over the wall. Home.