Kharma is a nobody. But greatness can be found in the most unexpected places.
|Hello random stranger. I have decided to take a friends advice and write my story down in this journal. I never know just where to start. The events that led up to how I was placed where I grew up? When I left there to find my freedom? Sanctuary itself? I guess I will find somewhere in the middle and see how that goes, try not to lose me as I weave the truth of my life for you...
There were still stars in the sky when the front door to the small farmhouse opened and a young woman stumbled out into the farm yard, a monster of a mutt following her. Rubbing sleep from her eyes and yawning she made her way through the hen yard to the barn where her day would begin. She would feed the hens, pigs, and let the horses out to graze with the goats so that she could muck the stables. After that she would help her mom finish the laundry and then make lunch to take to her father in the fields. Then come back and forage with her mom in the nearby woods for whatever her mom wanted to find today, maybe slipping away to see if her friend Willum Gregore had also found time to slip away to meet up.
At least that was the plan. Different things were in the works for her this day. When she got within three steps of the barn the mutt growled so menacingly that she stopped in her tracks. So much had sleep still been on her mind that she had not even noticed the barn door stood ajar. Just like that, her mind was racing with possibilities. Before her mind could land on any one of the endless things the opened door could mean she was in motion.
She threw the door wide open and reached to the right of the door as she stepped in, knowing she had left the pitchfork there the day before. Grabbing it she went into the barn and called softly to the dog to follow.
The dog padded silent as death into the barn on her left, he raised his muzzle up and scented the air. The girl went forward, her bare feet making no sound, the pitchfork held before her as though she were brandishing a sword like a knight from the capital. She made her way toward the hay in the back of the barn, for something was moving back that way. Hue was moving to the left and a few paces in front of her when he went still as a statue. She spoke, and what came out was like what the victim in every horror story she had ever heard said.
"Hello? Is someone there?"
The movement in the back by the hay stopped. The only sound she could hear was the soft snoring of Bess, the old nag, and her own breathing. Working her courage up the girl came forward some more, Hue still between her and whatever was there. Reaching out one hand she barely touched Hue's fur when a response came.
"I'm already hurt, are you going to finish the job?"
The voice was masculine and somehow sounded both strained and snarky. Not knowing what she was going to say before she opened her mouth she replied with the truth.
"I haven't decided yet. What are you doing here?"
There was a heavy sigh and a grumble, then the voice answered.
"Just trying to find a place to lie low and heal a bit before I go on my way. I was hoping no one would find me here."
Thinking this seemed a bit silly not being able to see the person she spoke to the girl decided to remedy that.
With that she turned away, trusting Hue to guard her back as she walked over to a shelf and got a lantern down. She leaned the pitchfork against the wall and lit the lantern before turning the light back toward the male in the hay. With the barn illuminated she could see some blood on the ground that led to the man in the hay.
Several thoughts rushed through her mind as she looked at the man. He was human, maybe somewhere in his late teens or early twenties. He was tanned or maybe naturally had a darker tint to his skin. Long curly black hair that was originally tied back had gotten loose and had hay in it. His brown eyes looked black in the shadows of the barn as they watched her. He wore fancy clothes, not like court garb but very well made and of fine quality. He wore only one piece of jewelry, a signet ring which the girl didn't recognize which only meant it wasn't the local lords house. The man was handsome in a disarrayed way. His dark blue coat was opened wide, the white shirt beneath almost black with blood.
"What's the verdict?"
His voice made her look up to his eyes from his bloodied shirt. She shook her head and walked to were Hue stood guard. The man was pressing one hand to where she imagined the wound was. Again she acted before she could think anything through. She stepped forward and almost shoved the lantern into his hand that was not holding the wound.
Then she made her way back to another shelf. Once there she gathered rags and took those out to the well. She brought up water, then set the bucket down washed out the rags as well as she could, dumped the water and brought up more again. Leaving the water and rags she ghosted as quietly back into the house as she could. She saw her mother, back to her, pounding dough for bread. She stealthily went to the curtained doorway behind which her mother worked, and slinking like a cat she was in and out with her mothers healing kit before her mother knew. She went back to the well and gathered the water and rags as well, bringing them back into the barn.
Without speaking she brought all she had gathered to the middle of the barn, away from the hay. Then she went back over to the man and took the lantern from him before he could accidentally burn everything down by passing out. She took it over to the shelf and sat it there so she could see everything she had gathered. Sighing the girl turned back to the man. He watched her look at him for several moments before she went back over to him.
"Come on, over there."
She pointed to where she had laid everything out. He made a sort of strained, frowning face at her before he spoke.
"I don't know if I can."
She could tell it took a lot for him to admit it. Nodding she came over and wrapped an arm gingerly around his middle to help him stand and half dragged half helped him walk over to her pile. He dropped like a stone once he was there. His black pants were also soggy with the blood that had dripped from the wound. He sat down with his legs straight out in front of him. She stepped between them, crouching down she slid her hands under his coat and over his shoulders, taking it almost completely off him before he realized what she was about and attempted to help. Not stopping at just the jacket she reached down grabbing his hands she brought them straight up above his head then let them go, they fell half back down causing her to looked annoyed and grab them again.
She looked from his hands to his face, she was close enough to feel his minty breath on her cheeks. His chocolate eyes held pain but also amusement. This time she raised his arms while looking him in the eye and his own eyes seemed to hold hers. When she let go of his arms they stayed above his head. His eyes kept her own captive as she reached down to the hem of his shirt and slowly, pulled it away from his skin. He sucked a breath in and swayed toward her. His lips almost touched hers but then he slowed his momentum and touched his forehead to hers.
He let out a strained laugh which turned to coughing. The girl took advantage of the distraction and lifted his shirt up, standing she pulled it off him. He reached out to steady himself after it was off and found his hands on her hips. The girl looked down as he turned his face up toward her, again time seemed to stand still as their eyes locked. Hue made a huffing noise and broke the spell. The man hesitated but dropped his hands slowly, running them down her thighs to her knees before pulling them away to lean back on.
He was much more wiry and muscular than she had originally thought. His wound ran from his left hip bone up his side to the front and stopped at where his heart would be beneath his ribs. It was deep across the flesh between his hip bone and rib cage. It was a bit ragged around the edges and oozed blood. She crouched down again, to get a better look at the wound. When she looked back up at his face he was studying hers.
She had her waist length honey gold hair tied back in a braid. Her grey eyes were clear and determined. She had a round nose that scrunched up when she was annoyed and full lips. High cheek bones and a pointed chin finished her face very fetchingly. When he had his hands on her hips he noted that the brown shift she wore over her chemise was hiding an hourglass shape beneath it.
Her hands lightly skimmed his skin, trailing goose flesh in their wake. She inspected the area around his wound as if she had done this a thousand times. The longer she was near him the more it felt as if they were fated to be near each other. She needed to finish this and get him gone before this weird feeling in her stomach grew.
She cleaned his wound, like a professional healer. She had learned at her mother's side how to treat wounds, her mother was a little of a hedge witch. She had just gotten some ointment on her fingers to run over the wound when he spoke again.
"Are you going to ask me who I am? Or what happened?"
Still crouching she looked at his face, which was again very close to her own. A small smile curled one side of her lips and his eyes widened a little, pupils dilating slightly in response. She shook her head again before speaking.
"No, stop moving. You can tell me whatever you would like when I am done."
Her fingers ghosted over his wound, applying the ointment. Then she wiped the rest off her fingers with a damp rag. Grabbing up the healers kit she stood and carried it to a bench, which she pulled away from the barn wall with her foot. Setting it down on the bench she went back to the man. Crouching once more she took his left arm and brought it around her shoulders, looking back from where she had placed his arm to his face made them brush noses as he was looking her way. Her body jumped a bit, startled, and he pulled her closer with the arm on her shoulders.
"Don't run away now. We are almost done aren't we?"
Making a small mmm noise she helped him to his feet and over to the bench. Once he sat with his legs spread to stabilize himself on the bench she seemed satisfied. Crouching yet again she made a quick inspection of the wound, which was still slightly oozing. Her hands rested on his knees and she was crouching between his legs to put her on the same level as his wound. She looked up at him and he was still watching her, a slight blush on his cheeks when their eyes met again.
"I am going to have to sew it. Do you need anything?"
He smiled for a moment before shaking his head.
"Many things, but not for the pain."
She got what she needed from the healers kit and worked quickly. She was not as good as her mother who would have left nary a scar, but the scar he would get would be slight. When she was finished she reapplied some ointment and put a bandage on it, using strips of cloth she wrapped around him, rising slowly as she wrapped. When she was finished she was almost level with his face again, this time her arms were around him when their eyes locked and it was her turn to slightly blush. She finished situating the strips and began to pull back from him, her hands going to his knees again to help push herself up. He covered her hands with his own, stopping her.
"What is my saviors name, that I may thank my guardian angel properly?"
His voice sounded a little huskier than before and it made her stomach feel weird again. Then her body flushed with heat as he looked at her.
"I am Kharma."
She stayed crouching between his knees, his hands covering hers. The strange feeling growing by the moment.
Her name from his lips made her close her eyes. It felt like he was touching her, skimming his fingertips along her skin, but it was only him breathing her name a second time.
"Kharma. Your name is almost as beautiful as you. Thank you for all of this. Will you be telling your parents that I am here?"
She opened her eyes and he let go of her left hand, but brought her right knuckles to his lips. The chocolate brown of his eyes drew her down into them as his lips brushed her knuckles and then he laid a real kiss on them.
Her voice shook slightly as her breath left her feeling weak as a kitten. Maybe it was just the way he made her feel like she wanted to melt into his arms. She stood abruptly and took two steps away from him.
"No. I won't. You can rest in the hayloft for a couple of days. I have to go finish my chores now."
She turned away from him quickly.
"Alright Kharma. You can call me Jahd by the way."