Sirens wailed in the distance. Bianca clung to Matheus’ side, her head resting on his shoulder. Blood dotted her shirt, a wavering line across her abdomen. Matheus hoped her stitches hadn’t burst, but they all had more pressing problems.
“Why haven’t they shot us yet?” Alistair asked, his head turning left and right, trying to watch all the soldiers at once.
“Don’t encourage them,” said Milo.
“Quin?” whispered Matheus.
“Not now, sunshine.”
The frame of Quin’s house shuddered, creaks and groans layering over the sound of the fire. The windows on the second floor cracked, then shattered. Shards of glass flashed yellow and orange as they rained over the yard.
“Leave the tall one,” said one of the soldiers. “Kill the rest.”
With a deafening crash, the supports on the first floor gave out. Flames rushed out, curling and swooping upward, enveloping the falling timbers in a shimmering cloud of ash and embers.