by Hydrargentium

Surefire wrinkled her nose.

She meant to say something witty, or at least quote Han Solo about princesses and incredible smells, but the moment she opened her mouth, the full force of the environment hit her, right in the back of her throat.


The stench was both sharply noxious and bluntly overwhelming. The first impression was something akin to rotting potatoes, but that was quickly smothered over by layer upon layer of effluvious vileness. Sour milk, then baby diapers, then burning tar, then coffee breath and stale cigar smoke — each one adding itself to the full, throat-twisting, gut-churning olfactory impact. Surefire could smell it, taste it, even feel it like acid at the rims of her eyes.

And before she even had time to fight against her rising gorge, she was struck from behind, the flat of a shovel reflecting dully in her lantern light.