Prologue: One Year Ago
“There are too many ghouls in the forest. We need you,” said Kolya.
The poor kid was exhausted and pale. Silvie gave him a second fruit bun, figuring there was no harm in a little petty crime. The buns weren’t selling; besides, it was depressingly likely that she’d have to resign from the bakery before the day was over.
“I’m not due back at the barracks for another week,” she said.
“Bd hr d—” Kolya paused, swallowing his mouthful before trying again. “But you’re the best, and we need you.”