Aled slid back into camp. It was a good slide, Seryn thought. He took a meandering route that looped around and in and around the camp’s edge, a sewing needle working stitches into the frayed edges of the sleeping men and women. It was much the same path she might have taken a few days ago, trying to mask her patrol around the edges. His problem was that there were so few people still wandering awake to hide between, he was meant to be asleep himself, and he was coming from the wrong direction. She could watch him from a hundred yards away, and every step he took was in trained sneak.
He was covering something, and she had an absurd, sickening idea what it was.
But she smiled when he came close. “You’re still on your feet?” she asked lightly.
She was starting to feel a little hazy herself and the others had all laid out behind her on top of their bedrolls in their clothes. Even Tomi and Rhian, who had worn smiles wide enough to make the moon jealous, moved like the morning had made them lighter while it weighted the rest of them, and had chattered with each other for almost an hour, had finally shut their eyes and started to breathe in and out, clean and even.
Aled shrugged. “Still on adrenaline, I guess.”
Seryn felt the lie like a cat flicking its tail at her on a walk-by, familiar, but still enough to make her flinch. She’d told the same lie earlier, though she knew they weren’t covering the same thing. He was yawning, shuffling on his feet, more than just hazy.
“Yeah,” she said. She looked down for a minute, like she was tired too, but it let her resettle her smile before she looked at him again. “Me too.”