This is an excerpt from my current fantasy novel, Wynter’s Song. Please remember that this is unedited. Your feedback is welcome if you feel so inclined.
Janus watched as Mad Dog glared at him before following Cristoforo. Now that he was alone, Janus closed his eyes and took several deep breaths. His hand shot waves of pain up his arm with each pulse of his heart. He wanted to sleep until the pain went away. That wasn’t an option. He had to get out of the basement before Cristoforo discovered Janus’s lie.
He focused on the ropes again, fighting against the pain. The ropes were already loose. If he could get one hand free he’d be okay. He still had his dagger. Janus didn’t understand why they hadn’t taken it but he didn’t care. The rope holding his right hand loosened enough for him to move his hand a little. He glanced at the stairs then twisted his body, trying to get the hilt of the dagger close enough to his hand to draw the blade.
The effort tightened the rope against his left hand and he had to bite back a scream as the pain shot through his arm again. Janus relaxed and tried to breathe through the pain. When it settled to a dull throb, he braced himself then twisted his body again. The pain redoubled and he squeezed his eyes shut, tears streaming down his cheeks as he groped for the dagger with his right hand. His fingers closed over the hilt and he pulled the blade free before relaxing and fighting against the need to vomit.
Janus stared at the stairs as he turned the dagger in his hand and began sawing through the rope. The blade slipped and bit into his skin but he ignored the new cut as much as he could. The rope loosened enough for him to pull his hand free. He stopped to catch his breath then quickly freed his injured hand. When he was loose, he held his left hand close to his chest. The pain still throbbed through his arm but he couldn’t worry about that for the time being.