Chapter Five: Surprises
August 2, 2020 at 8:27 pm #117425
Chapter Five: Surprises
Tim had made it safely onto a piece of the floor, and now they were both jumping towards the rows of scrolls. Each row was marked by a symbol that he didn’t know.
“What do the symbols represent?” he asked Throden.
Tim nodded. They must be marked in alphabetical order.
They walked on, or rather jumped, to a row marked with a strange looking symbol.
Looks like an upside-down tree almost, Tim thought to himself. “What letter is this?” he asked.
“M,” Throden answered. “We are going to be looking for Murry.”
Tim nodded even though he couldn’t help Throden in his search. He waited patiently while Throden scanned the shelves.
“Aha!” Throden cried. “Found it.”
He took down a scroll from off its chain and dusted it off, handing it to Tim. “Here,” he said. “Read it.”
Tim carefully opened the clear case that protected the scroll and unrolled it.
Scarlet letters were written there, but he could not read them. He glanced up at Throden and sighed. “I can’t read Uritin remember?”
Throden chuckled. “No,” he said. “You just have to adjust your eyes.”
Tim was confused but focused on the scroll once again. He waited, and when nothing happened, was about to look again at Throden, when the words began to change. So slowly, that he didn’t notice it at first but then it gradually became swifter, and he could start to make out English letters here and there.
Finally, the scroll was completely translated.
There will come a time when deep darkness will prevail over Ninjanaria. You must find the light in the darkness and bring it forth, you must look to the Murry who will save us all. She will come with companions named Tim, Jered, and Silas; they will not be of this world but of another called Earth.
Tim looked up. “What does this mean?” he asked. “Is this about me and my siblings?”
He started to panic. What does this mean? He asked himself over and over. Then his legs went weak and he fainted.
Tim sat at the table, eating some stew that Sringard set in front of him. After he had fainted Throden had caught him before he fell, and brought him back to the house for Sringard to take care of. Tim had no idea where Throden was now.
“Sringard?” he asked.
“Hmm?” she answered distractedly.
“When I was talking to Throden the other day,” he began. “He started to talk to me about his past. I interrupted him and he never finished. I was wondering what happened to him after he was bought by Thomas Martin.”
Sringard looked up from kneading her bread dough. “Well,” she said. “After Thomas Martin bought him, they became friends. He started thinking about him as more than just a slave for his master. Thomas offered Throden his freedom, but Throden decided to stay with Thomas rather than risk his freedom by going out into the world and getting caught again by someone else. But Thomas’ master wanted Throden as his personal slave, and took him from Thomas. The Master was very kind to Throden and grew fond of him as well. The Master ruled over Urit and when he was dying, wrote his will, leaving Throden in charge.
You see the Master didn’t have any children and his wife had died years earlier from a disease.
That wasn’t expected by anyone. But Throden became Master of Urit and has been ever since.”
Tim sat and pondered this new information for some time, watching Sringard make bread. Finally, after a long period of silence, he asked. “Sringard, what happened to Thomas Martin?”
Sringard wiped flour stained hands on her apron. “I don’t know Tim,” she said. “Throden never saw him again, though he did hear he had been promoted to The Council of Ninjas.”
They grew silent once more.
“Sringard, may I go outside?”
She frowned. “There is a big price on your head,” she said. “Aclabar the Dark Wizard has sent out people to find you and your brother. It’s not safe.”
Tim shrugged. “What if I stay next to the house?”
She nodded. “Real close.”
He smiled. “Don’t worry.” Then he was heading for the door.
Tim had yet to see Urit from the outside. People were everywhere.
Merchants called out their wares and men rode past on horses, the Uritin Guard were there making sure no one got into trouble.
Few people noticed him, but some stopped and pointed, they had no idea he was part of the prophecy, but they knew he had been found by himself next to a pond.
Tim stayed close to the building as was instructed but… couldn’t help to wander just a little bit. The exciting smells, the people, the sounds, were just too much to resist.
Suddenly, he felt eyes boring into his back and turning, noticed someone watching him. This wasn’t just another curious person pointing at ‘the strange boy’, this was someone staring. Someone intent on what he was doing, his every move.
Tim grew uneasy and no longer felt the excitement in the crowd. He needed to get back to the house.
He turned and started making his way back, but ran straight into a man about five feet tall and about the same wide.
He had a hideous smile on his face and gripped a long dagger in his hand.
“Gotcha,” he said evilly, then rose the butt of his dagger, bringing it crashing down on Tim’s head.
Hougen woke early the next morning. He rolled out of bed and slipped into clothes.
He felt refreshed, and almost cheerful he thought. Walking into the kitchen he found his dad sitting at the table. “Morning.”
His dad just grunted in reply.
The whole day was like that. Hougen trying to be positive, his dad not caring.
They were working out in the forest logging the trees when it happened.
Hougen had gone back to the house to get some lunch, his dad had stayed behind, “just wanting to get one more tree.”
Hougen berated himself all his life for leaving his dad to cut down the tree by himself. For when he got back his dad was gone, crushed beneath the tree forever.
Heartbroken, Hougen having nowhere to go, nothing to keep him there, bid the house goodbye, paid his final respects to his dad, and set out after Jaylin.
Just so you know, I hate this and am rewriting this really soonly!! XD
Marrill stopped dead in her tracks. The boy, seeming to wake up out of a daze, stood up and grabbed a stick, pointing it at Marrill menacingly.
“What are you doing here?” he demanded.
Marrill held her hands up in defense. “I..I..don’t know,” she stammered. “I just went through a door and I came out here.”
The boy glared at her. “’Went through a door and came out here’?” he repeated. “What does that mean?”
She shrugged, she didn’t even know what it meant. She was frightened and just wanted to go back.
She turned around looking for the way back, but to her dismay there was nothing; no shimmering doorway, no magical portal, nothing. Just a vast forest stretching for miles behind her. She sat down on the damp ground and started to cry.
The boy came forward and laid his hand on her shoulder. “Hey,” he said. “Um, are you alright?”
She took a big breath and wiped her eyes on the back of her sleeve. “Yeah,” she said. “I’ll be fine, I’m Marrill by the way.” She stood up and held out her hand.
“I’m Jaylin,” he said and shook her hand.
She smiled. “Yeah, sorry, I probably scared you,” she said. “Just appearing like that.”
He laughed. “I have to admit you did startle me.” They stood there looking at each other for a minute. Something about this boy is familiar, she thought.
Finally, Jaylin walked over to his little fire and sat down. “Why don’t you come sit down and have some coffee?” he offered.
She laughed, tucking a wandering strand of hair behind her ear, and sat down across from him. “So what’s your story?” she asked him.
Jaylin looked at the ground. “Um it’s kinda a long story,” he mumbled.
She looked up from the plate of eggs he had given her and frowned. “Oh, I didn’t mean to….”
He waved his hand, cutting her off. “No. It’s okay,” he assured her.
“I grew up in Brarlock, my mom died at my birth, and I’ve been living with my dad and brother until recently…” He trailed off, wiping his eyes.
Marrill couldn’t believe it, she knew this boy, she basically created him. He was part of her dreams and plays.
“Jaylin,” she said. “Jaylin, are you Jaylin Storm?” she asked.
He snapped his head up and looked at her intently. “How do you know that?” he asked.
“Jaylin, where are we?” she asked.
“On the outskirts of The Forest of Memories,” he answered. “Why?”
She stood up. “In Ninjanaria?”
“Of course,” he said. “Where do you think we are.”
She swayed on her feet and had to sit down again. “Jaylin, I made this place,” she said. “I have played about this place and dreamed about this place all my life!”
He laughed. “Really? You expect me to believe you?” he shook his head.
“No, Jaylin you’ve got to believe me,” she exclaimed. “I’ll tell you everything about you, but you’ve got to believe me!”
He glared at her. “Look,” he said, sighing. “You know, I don’t mind if you want to tag along with me,” he offered. “But,” he continued. “You have to stop with all the crap.”
She stood up. “Fine,” she said, tears forming in her eyes. “I’ll just leave and not bother you with any of my ‘crap’!” She started to walk away, furiously clenching and unclenching her fists.
“Marrill wait!” he said, standing up as well.
She spun around. “What?” she said.
He studied his hands and said something so softly that she had to lean forward to hear him.
“Please don’t go.”
She was speechless, she had expected an insult, something, but definitely not that.
“Why shouldn’t I?” she asked finally.
He looked at her. “Because I’m lonely and need someone to talk to. I’m sorry for being an ass.”
She smiled and sat back down. “You know, if you were any other boy, I would have slapped you and walked away?”
He blushed. “Why didn’t you?”
“Because I like you, I feel like I know you. I feel your pain,” she said softly.
He shifted his position and sighed. “We should probably get going, I don’t want anyone coming to search for me.”
Then added more quietly. “Though no one will.”
Jered’s eyes flew open. He jerked upright coughing up water. He was confused and looked around frantically. Where am I?
His eyes landed on a figure a few feet in front of him, curled up in the sand. He reached for it and slowly turned it over. It was a boy, about Jered’s age, he was a little pudgy and seemed to be sleeping. Jered concentrated on the boy’s face, the boy looked so familiar that he could almost scream. Then it all came back, Tim disappearing, his dad’s letter, Aunt Evelyn, all of it.
He crouched, and examined him carefully, he didn’t seem to have any wounds that he could tell. But he was out cold.
He looked around searching for help. He was in a valley, surrounded by giant tree-studded ridges. A small pond like lake rippled in the center presumably fed by the streams running off the mountains.
There wasn’t a person in sight.
Panic started to swell inside him but he pushed it down resolutely and started to think rationally.
First things first, he told himself. I need to find wood for a fire, then actually make a fire then… first things first, he reminded himself and went to look for firewood.
By the time he got a fire going, and his clothes drying, it was late in the night. Silas had finally come to, and they were huddled around the fire trying to stay warm.
“I really didn’t think it was actually going to work,” Silas said breaking the silence.
Jered laughed. “To be honest, I had my doubts too,” he admitted.
Silas shrugged. “I mean, who wouldn’t?” he asked.
Jered smiled, he had spent a lot of time with Silas when he was younger, but then his family had moved away and he hadn’t seen him for five years.
He had forgotten how much he liked Silas and was sincerely enjoying his company.
“You know the last time we saw each other was five years ago at your mom’s birthday party?” he asked. Silas laughed. “Yeah, I had forgotten how long ago that was!” he said.
Jered nodded. “Yeah,” he agreed.
They talked for most of the night, too cold to sleep until suddenly they heard voices and looking up could just make out, in the dim light, six figures descending one of the mountains.
By the time the people were off the mountainside, Jered and Silas had found sticks and were brandishing them like swords.
“Greetings!” one of the men called.
“Um greetings,” Jered called back. “Do you know the way to the closest town?”
Jered could now make out that there were five men and what looked like a young boy, though he couldn’t see their faces.
The men advanced slowly and only stopped when they got within ten feet from the fire.
The small boy was bound with strong ropes and gagged. Dirt was smudged over his face and his clothes were torn. He looked as if he could barely stand on his feet.
“The closest town?” the man who seemed to be their leader repeated. “It’s about half a day’s walk from here, over those ridges,” he said, gesturing to the way he and his troop had just come.
Jered nodded. “Thank you. But what are you doing with the boy?” he asked.
The men exchanged glances before answering, then the big fat one said. “What’s it to ya, boy?”
The leader sighed. “Shut your hole Porter!” he said sternly.
Porter shrugged but didn’t say anything more.
“We are selling this boy to the Graylick if you must know,” the leader said.
“Unless you can pay more,” Porter added.
The leader whirled around and backhanded him in the face. “Porter, I said to shut it!” he growled.
Jered and Silas winced in unison.
The leader turned back around. “My name is Barlan Rickabond, but you can call me Leader or High One.” his troop snickered as if he had just said the funniest joke.
Beside Jered, Silas rolled his eyes, gaining an evil glare from Barlan.
“And yes, like my…overly haste-full companion remarked, we will sell this boy,” he said the word like the boy was the devil himself and sent a kick his way. “To the highest bidder,” he concluded.
Jered’s stomach churned from the prospect of selling and trading humans like they were somebody’s possessions. But his heart also ached for the young boy and he wished with all his might he could set him free.
“What are you asking for him?” he asked, in the most business-like tone he could manage.
All five of the men grinned greedily at the idea of more money.
Porter started to open his mouth to reply, but then seemed to think better of it and let Barlan do the bartering.
“The amount starts at five thousand hiti,” he declared.
Jered didn’t know what hiti were, but he guessed it was this strange place’s currency.
He wasn’t quite sure what to do now, he had no hiti or any money at all for that matter and needed to come up with a plan.
Suddenly Silas stepped forward. “Give me and my companion time to think this over, we will give you our answer in the morning,” he said confidently.
The man was clearly surprised but regained his countenance quickly and stepped away leaving Jered and Silas to discuss the situation alone.
“What do we do now?” he whispered frantically.
Silas smirked. “Let them think we ran away in the night, then we can track them tomorrow and rescue the boy!”
Jered thought this a pretty good plan except… “Why not just steal the boy tonight and make our way to the city they told us about?” he asked.
Silas’ grin faded. “Really, Jered?” he asked.
Jered frowned. “What?” he asked indignantly.
“Because that’s the sort of thing they’d be expecting,” he explained. “But if we “ran away” they wouldn’t see us as a possible danger in losing their captive.” he finished triumphantly. “Pretty good eh?” he boasted.
Jered laughed, rolling his eyes. “Yeah, whatever Silas, we’ll do it your way.”
Silas whispered a quiet whoop, then laid down on the sand to wait for the nomadic slave traders to fall asleep before they would slip away.
- This topic was modified 3 months, 4 weeks ago by Beth Darlene.
Jominkreesa! For the weirdos who know what it means! 😉August 4, 2020 at 6:46 pm #117513Gracie@kimlikesart
I only caught a few typos, but overall really good!
You have so many things tying togethor! I like how Marril ‘created’ Jaylin.
Sooo…Jaylin likes some girls?
And then something else… You used the old form of ‘donkey’. It’s not a bad word, just crude to humans these days. (And Jaylin very well could talk like that all the time.)
But, using questionable words could cut down the sweep of your audience. I know some people who would love your story, but the use of such words might make them tempted to book the book down. Just a suggestion and something to think about.
Again, really good! I can’t (well, I’ll have to) wait for the next chapter!!!
Passion means to be willing to suffer.August 4, 2020 at 7:34 pm #117514
Yeah, well he doesn’t like Marrill in a weird way. And he didn’t like her at first, but yeah, he likes her lol!
Yeah, I don’t really think that’s a swear word, but yeah, I get what you’re saying!
Jominkreesa! For the weirdos who know what it means! 😉August 4, 2020 at 8:24 pm #117517PurpleTurtle@purpleturtle
@beth20, I really liked it, and I agree with Gracie, but I also think that it is kind of hard to keep track of all the charachters.
"It is not the strength of the body that counts but the strength of the spirit" ~ J.R.R. TolkeinAugust 4, 2020 at 8:34 pm #117518
Yeah, I kinda have a lot. But I can’t get rid of any!! 🙁
Jominkreesa! For the weirdos who know what it means! 😉
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