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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/2099026-The-Red-Caravan
by Arthus
Rated: 13+ · Fiction · Dark · #2099026
Roughly 850 words, I wrote this in one evening. Any input and review welcome.
Prologue: Quiet

Crickets chirped and the wind howled, while the fire crackled before the young man, its bright blue flame reflecting off his Voxi spear resting on his shoulder, its haft looking entangled in black vines that rose to its cross guard and point, a deep red stone set in the center spreading red, veiny paths along the sharpened edge of the blade.

A cold look in the mans crisp pale blue eyes as he stares into the blackness beyond the barely visible orange hue of the Fraksis barrier before him. The red eyes of monsters staring back from the shadows.

“Looking quiet tonight.” A voice from behind, feminine, but not without an edge. A hand puts force down on his shoulder, then releases when accompanied by a soft thud of arse meeting ground.

“I like quiet.” The young man said to his counterpart, not a grim or gravely tone, but one that hinted at a well worn life.

The two sat in silence for a while, aside from the occasional growl of the monsters, and the almost inaudible swishing of the wineskin, filled with water of course.

“You’re an enigma boy.” The counterpart, now leaning her forearm against the young man’s shoulder.

“Mm?” Words betray your nature, use them sparingly He knew there was a bet among the veterans of the company in terms of who could learn his past first, as to who would guess correctly remained to be see.

“Indeed, you more or less tag along without a word as we pass by, work for free aside from asking for a bed and food every night, barely socialize with everyone else.” A pause to swig from the skin, “Yet when trouble arises you’re almost always the first to enter the fray and the last to leave, but manage to never leave a spec of blood on that spear of yours, and the Speaker has taken a strange liking to you.”

The Speaker, converser with the dead, insane by many standards yet somewhat necessary with putting the passed to peace.

“Yet you Shambler, play your cards freely for all to see.” The counter part nudges him.

“Because I clearly have nothing to hide and if I did, you’d already know.” Shambler leans more heavily against the young man.

“Yet you won’t tell how you acquired your nickname.” A quick jab to the ribs.

“I though it would be obvious.” The scar just below her left knee would start the mind, and after watching her walk, would give away the slight limp caused by a shorter limb. It caused no problems however, because she could outrun most of the other warriors in the troupe.

“Not as obvious as mine.”

“Oh but Brightness, your natural features made it easy.” The eyes, always the eyes that drew attention, apparently unnatural on the side of the continent.

“You should sleep.”

“You should instead.” She must care, or think him weak.

“A few hours till sun up won’t hurt.” A gentle kick to the knee.

“Not up for debate Brightness.” Insistent woman.

Dol shwalna volke mishka kren” Another kick. ‘Boy don’t like girls who speak their mind.’

“That’s not on either.” Brightness cracks a wry smile, if only for a moment. He stands and slings his spear over his shoulders, boots making a slight jingle with the loose ringlets, “You should get those replaced as well.”

“With what money?” The woman opens her mouth, then closes it. Another smile from the young man, “Shalah be veti Shambler-nim.” ‘Gods be with you Shambler-nim’

“Aye aye, goodnight to you too, you foreign prick of a man.” He enjoyed Shambler, fun to talk to, yet vicious and to the point when needed.

Nearing his bedroll under the red spotted caravan, the snoring of the other, older men grew louder, along with the occasional moan from the nearby tents, affairs of bright pinks and reds to match the going-ons inside.

The Speaker, as ever was perched, back against the large wheels of the caravan, next to his bedroll, waiting for him.

Fruga me shalu Speaker?” ‘Must I deal with you Speaker?’ His own tongue was rare this far away from home, yet the Speaker knew, so he allows himself the small liberty of using it again.

“Kind words as ever Brightness.” the small thing almost pulled the sentence off without an accent, its tri-puplied eyes adjusting as he approached, the white ring expanding to let what little light was supplied in.

Crawling into his bedroll, the Speaker taking its place at his side, folding one of its exceptionally large ears back in on itself as a pillow.

“Do they keep you company Brightness?” A flash of red, and a great fire appears, followed by the smell of death. Loose flesh clinging weakly to bone, dead eyes spill from sockets and vital organs flail loosely from skin.

“More than I would like Speaker.” Staring into the bottom of the caravan the young man closes his eyes. The figure of a tall priest like warrior, staff in one hand, Circlet in the other, looks down on the man with fire behind. “You will live young one, whether you want to or not.” Hands roughly grab him and bring him to his feet, “The End is coming boy, and you have little time to prepare, we all do.”

“The End has come and gone, what do we do now old bat?”
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