Very short extract from a larger story. Wrote for the Writers Cramp Contest.
|The train chugged its way slowly through the desert. Sians heart was racing, skipping beats every few seconds making her feel as though it was about to jump out of her chest every time it kicked back in. She was sitting next to Axel at the back of the carriage. He looked cool, calm and collected as usual. The rest of the passengers were just the regular public commuters travelling from one dust bowl to another. They had no idea what was chasing the train. Their happy little lives were in danger of ending and they had no idea.
Sian looked up at Axel, his deep crimson eyes already staring back at her.
‘You can feel it, can’t you?’ he whispered.
‘I’m, not sure’ is all she could muster.
‘Oh come on new girl, this is easy stuff. You’re gonna have to stop acting like a zombie at some point’ he mocked her.
Sian looked embarrassed, but she didn’t have any time to work up an answer to him. Her heart stopped beating and thunder sounded far away. The passengers of the train looked out of the window curiously. Sian looked terrified. Axel looked excited. He stood up and opened the carriage door.
‘Come on, we’re out of here’ he held out his hand to help Sian get up. She took it and didn’t let go as he led her out to the back of the train and told her to get ready. On the count of three they jumped. Sian closed her eyes as she prepared to slam into the sandy floor and roll, but her fall was soft and gentle. She opened her eyes and realized Axel had held her as he landed. She never would have thought they had just jumped off a train the way he was stood holding her, so still and unmoving. His eyes were searching the horizon as Sian dropped to her feet.
‘Feel it now?’ he asked, as another thunder clap burst through the sky above them. Sandstorms kicked up in the distance as the blue sky slowly changed to a chaotic red.
‘What’s going to happen?’ Sian was confused.
‘You act like you were born yesterday’ Axel laughed. Sian gave him a stern look. Axel stifled his laughter, unable to contain a few giggles. It was true, she had just been born. Her life before yesterday was normal and easy, but when she had come of age at 16 her new life had to begin. No memories, no family, just a new future with the tribe. Her future was fast becoming endangered though, as Axel prepared to fight.
They were in the middle of a pulse training exercise not an hour ago when ‘Shiver’, as Axel had called her, had appeared out of a nearby lake. She was beautiful, covered from head to toe in a shiny, wet glow. Her body was perfect as she rose from the water looking like a goddess, her eyes boring into Sians soul. Axel had immediately dragged her away from the lake. Not that she could move anyway, he legs had turned to stone under the immense pressure Shiver was exerting upon her.
They had jumped on the first train out of Slug Town. Axel had called the Captain on some kind of communicator built into his hand and told him of Shivers appearance. Axel requested to turn back and fight her while leaving Sian on the train. The captain ordered Axel not to leave Sians side, but to use this opportunity to carefully teach her of their enemies.
Axel was over the moon. He had longed for some real action for a long time and now he was smack in the middle of a chase with Shiver. He knew how powerful she was, but being Axel he was very over confident.
On the tracks, Axel and Sian stood waiting for Shiver to catch up to them. The sky burned and the ground rumbled with such force that Sian struggled to keep her balance. Within seconds they saw her, gliding like a jet towards them. Her blue skin contrasting with the red atmosphere and making her glow like a brilliant blue light bulb. He silver hair whipped behind her. She was a few hundred feet away when Axel turned to Sian.
‘Now, just watch, and whatever you do, don’t do anything’ he smiled.
Axel took off running before Sian could say anything, his hair leaving a blurry red trail behind him. As he got closer to Shiver her raised his hand into the air and cried out. ‘Ingot, summon!’, his hand burst into flames as a sword appeared out of thin air. They were a few feet apart however when Shiver opened her brilliant blue lips and screamed into his face, icy dust enveloping his entire body. The sky suddenly changed to an electric blue, the floor freezing instantly. A crack of thunder ripped through the floor, knocking Sian off her feet. The world had been frozen, time had stood still. A look of terror was forever branded onto Axels face as his body fell to the floor in a cold, coffin of ice. Through the fog, Shiver didn’t stop racing towards Sian. Scrabbling to her feet, she saw the ice goddess reeling towards her. Closing her eyes she waited to follow Axel into an everlasting sleep.
After a few seconds she began to wonder why she was not dead yet. Opening her eyes, her heart skipped a beat. The sight of Shiver up close had literally taken her breath away. Shivers glossy blue eyes stared down upon her like a mother seeing her new born child for the first time. Sian choked and fell to her knees as she remembered how to breathe. Shiver smiled.
‘Child, you are so young. You know not the truth of these people’ her voice was the softest thing Sian had ever known. ‘I am not your enemy; I am here to help you, to set you free’.