A bridge over a beautiful waterfall

A bridge over a beautiful waterfall
Nature brings magic

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Writing Wednesday - A Sample from "Only A Name"

Colwyn led his two friends to Emberlie's tent. Commander Cathal was sitting with her and they were going over the lists of provisions. “Sir, Mistress Emberlie.” Colwyn saluted.
What is it boy?” Cathal asked.
Did you find any more of the mushrooms?” Emberlie asked.
No, ma'am. We didn't. We found three headless bodies and a silver haired child at the edge of our patrol area.” Colwyn was certain that would get their attention.
Three headless corpses?” Cathal's attention was focused directly on the three young boys.
Three men, not sure of their age because there weren't any heads,” Colwyn said. “The blood was clotted so we feel the attack probably happened yesterday or last night at some point. There was a silver haired child hiding under a berry bush. He was bitten by a forest spider. That was how we found him, when he came out from under the bush with the spider attached to the back of his hand.”
How old is the child?” Emberlie asked.
Older than Ethan but younger than us, we're guessing,” Colwyn said. “He passed out before we could get any information from him.”
I take it he's with Nial right now,” Cathal asked. Colwyn nodded. “Did you see anything else?”
The footprints that may have belonged to the murdered men and the child,” Kieran said. “The bodies and the child are all wearing slave smocks so our best guess is they escaped an ongoing purge.”
What direction were they going?” Cathal asked.
West, towards the river god's shrine,” Colwyn said. “At least, that's our guess. They were up above the river.”
Well, they'd have found the same fate there that they found in the forest,” Cathal said. “No place is safe anymore.” He looked at Emberlie, who nodded. “You boys are dismissed.”
Sir.” All three boys saluted and left the tent.
I'm going to check on Dermot.” Manus veered off towards the infirmary tent. “You two coming with me?”
Kieran grinned. “Of course. We haven't picked on him in a few solars and he's probably feeling neglected.”
The boys laughed as they made their way to the infirmary tent again. Inside, several people were rushing around. Nial was sitting next to the child they'd brought in, supporting his weight on one arm. His free hand was working on forcing a potion down the child's throat. Fergus was over using his magic to help.
Colwyn and the others joined Dermot at his cot. “How're you feeling?” Manus asked.
Better, now that my leg isn't trying to tear itself apart,” Dermot said. “You guys are the ones who brought the girl in, right?”
Colwyn looked over at the girl again. “She's a girl? We thought she was a boy.”
I've been listening to Nial bark orders at everyone.” Dermot rubbed his leg with one hand. “He's worried. You got the paste on her hand but the poison was already in her system and he's concerned that it isn't going to be enough.”
It might not be. She was terrified when we caught her.” Manus looked at his cousin. “Stop rubbing your leg. You'll open the wounds again.”
Dermot pulled his hand back. “Yeah, that's what Master Fergus and Master Nial keep telling me. It itches really bad though.”
Manus smacked him lightly on the head. “That's because it's healing. Leave it alone or you'll be stuck in here longer.”
I'd rather not. I like Master Nial and Master Fergus but I'd rather be out on patrol with you.” Dermot shifted his position so his hands were in front of him.
We found bodies earlier today.” Colwyn looked ill. “Three headless men that Kieran thought might be slaves.”
I didn't think they were slaves. I know they were escaped slaves and I'll bet the girl is an escaped slave as well.” Kieran touched his right shoulder. “I saw the brands on their shoulders.”
Why would slaves try to run? It's an instant death sentence,” Dermot said.
The purges. Remember what Mistress Emberlie told us all to watch out for?” Manus asked. “The Emperor ordered a purging of the slaves with silver hair.”
Dying on a chopping block or dying while making a bid for freedom.” Kieran rubbed the back of his neck. “I don't know about those slaves but I'd be looking for a way to run. There's always a chance that they might get away from the purge.”
Not with the temples getting in on it.” Colwyn looked grim. “I heard Commander Cathal telling Mistress Emberlie about that. It's getting harder and harder to find a safe haven if you've got silver hair.”
That's why Lord Mikhael is collecting as many of us as he can.” Kieran put a hand on Colwyn's shoulder. “Just like we were found.”
Colwyn nodded, but his eyes were distant. He looked over at the girl that Nial and his apprentices were trying to save. “This is a war and we have to remember that we'll lose people. But I don't want to see any more children die. Children shouldn't have to pay the price for an adult's cruelty.”
Unfortunately, it's the children who are most likely to pay,” Kieran said.
You should go. If you just came in from patrol you're going to need to get something to eat.” Dermot shoved gently at his cousin and their friends. Colwyn collected his little patrol and led the other two boys out of the infirmary. He looked one last time at the cluster of healers attempting to save a little girl's life.
Colwyn's thoughts were troubled as he and the other two got their dinner from the cook. “Col, you okay?” Kieran asked, shoveling food into his mouth as quickly as he could.
Colwyn shook his head. “It's just seeing what we did and then having to bring that little girl in today. I'll bet she's the one who threw up after seeing her friends beheaded. I wonder if she's going to be all right.”
She's like the rest of us, Col.” Manus regarded his friend solemnly. “Are any of us all right?”
Some are taking this better than others.” Colwyn sighed and set his bowl aside. “I hate this. I hate the fact that one man has the power to kill so many people and no one's willing to stop him.”
He's the Emperor. You can't exactly walk up to the Emperor of all Lytharia and say 'Hey, your idea is stupid. Let's just let these people alone'.” Kieran gave him a look that spoke volumes.
The High Lords are supposed to have that kind of power. But you notice none of them are doing anything about this either,” Colwyn said.
High Lord Berach's had how many seasons to make people hate Lord Mikhael and the rest of us?” Manus asked. “Think about that, Col. Berach and who knows how many others have been scared of us for the last five seasons. Maybe even longer.”
We need to do more to help those like us, but how can we when we don't even know where they all are?” Colwyn picked up his dishes. “I'm going to go practice for a while before bed.”
Hold up. I'll come with you.” Kieran stood up.
Manus handed his dishes to Kieran. “Could you take those for me? I'm going back to the infirmary to see if Master Nial needs any more help.”
All right.” Kieran took the dishes. Colwyn and Kieran headed towards the kitchen area while Manus retraced his steps to the infirmary tent.

1 comment:

  1. Okay. I want to read this.

    So finish it, will ya? =)