Monday, September 17, 2018

“...With the Greatest of Ease” - A Tale of Heroes - Scene 60: Thissraelle

Once they had gotten a good distance past the road that turned off to the north, toward the buildings, Granthurg stepped off the road into the meadow. She followed. They walked, casually, north, but slightly away from the old inn compound. They were trying not to draw attention to themselves.

Thissraelle looked up at Granthurg. I am very lucky to have found a friend like this out in this world. Still, I hardly know him. She looked back down at the meadow at her feet. With all the craziness that I’ve seen since I left the tower just a few days ago, I am amazed to be still alive.

My father tried to trap me, there, but he also taught me well. The powers of light and the dimensions have served me well.

They walked down the backslope of a low hill, and began to turn their path back toward the buildings, toward the hedgerows on the knoll. Granthurg was taller, of course, and was looking back over the hill crest.

But even with that, I feel much safer when I’m near him. Not just safe from danger, either. She looked ahead across the field. I’m not sure if he’ll want to go with me all the way to Emberfire, though.

Granthurg interrupted her reverie with a harsh whisper. “The man with the bundle of sticks is following us.”

“What?” She started up the slope to get a look.

Granthurg stepped before her and crouched. He gestured to her to stay down as well. “He turned down the road to the inn, then stepped off into the meadows. I can’t see him, now.”

“Let’s hurry,” he said, and begun a low squat run behind the hills to the hedges. Once there, they crawled up to the crest to look between the branches of the bushes. They were actually fairly close to the buildings, maybe only a few dozen yards. The buildings themselves were old and falling apart. There were no windows, just spaces with wooden planks covering the way. There were many horses, carts, wagons, and carriages waiting outside the cluster. A few had people near them, waiting for someone to bring out either purchases or money from within. From the compound a rough rutted wagon trail led to the south, back to the main road.

Thissraelle spoke softly, “That’s a lot of wagons. How do that many people fit in that small building?”

Granthurg grunted a muffled noise. She saw him scanning the brush and gentle hills of the meadow, looking for the man. He spoke, half to himself, “He was wearing a gray tunic and carrying a big bundle of sticks.”

“Who is he after?” Thissraelle thought, apparently out loud.

“Maybe he thinks I have that thing they’re looking for.” Granthurg said, “Maybe they’re the ones that are after you.”

She looked up at him, suddenly feeling not so safe. He shrugged.

A sudden loud boom sounded from within the main hall. The walls of the building muffled it a bit, but it was still very strong, and they strained to look to see what had happened. They could make out shouts and shrieks from within the building.

“What was - “ She started to speak, but stopped when people began pouring out of the few exits in the inn. She could hear their shouts more clearly, but there were too many of them to make out any actual words.

They ran to their horses and wagons, and began to mount up and turn away down the path. Some were dragging slaves in ropes or shackles, and they were hindered and slowed by their burdens. These were loaded up into the wagons. Others began fighting in the yard surrounding the buildings.

“Look!” Granthurg pointed. One man was running toward a well-made wagon, a short distance from the others. Under each arm was a young child, and he pushed another child stumbling ahead of him. “Children!”

Children? Her mind’s eye flashed with images of the poverty stricken street kids of Twynne Rivers. Children? More memories of her own childhood in the guild hall. Children? An ugliness welled up inside her, an anger deeper than a simple argument with her parents. She felt her body tense and her breathing quicken. The world around her started to slow.

The man reached the back of the wagon and began handing the kids up to someone waiting there. The children kicked and shouted as they were roughly lifted and dragged into the wagon. As he finished, another figure in rumpled clothing rushed up behind him and tackled him to the ground.

Granthurg shouted, “ANTONERRI!” He scrambled to his feet and crashed through the hedgerow. He unslung his hammer as he started running.

Thissraelle, her eyes huge and raging, lept up into the air and sailed effortlessly over Granturg and the meadow toward the wagon. She didn’t even stop to realize she was flying.


Question for the comment section below: Which of the 5 main characters is the most likeable? The most irritating? The most confusing? The most... (you make one up)?


This continues the story of the heroes in Wynne, in Twynne Rivers, in the world of The Hero's Tale, Family Friendly RPGs. Here's more info on The Hero's Tale, and family friendly RPGing.

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