I am trying to write a book based on the medieval time mix with magic. I have a basic idea what I plan to write but I am trying to introduce a multitude of things into one chapter. Please let me know if it seems cliché or comes close to other books or movies or any source material so I can change it. I also have not a lot of names for characters as well as a title due to the fact that I am currently work on character development for said characters and book. Rough short tale of two friends and their endeavors to survive in such cruel environment. I hope the story makes some sense it is the prologue and the first chapter.
comment me on grammar. I also my not get back for a while since I am at school and work. I only get some much time on this little hobby.
C plus ABCD= name of a city
M plus ABCD= name of a male
F plus ABCD= name of a female
L plus ABCD= name of lord
The night moon illuminated the sky. A sign entrance read Barton slowly burned away. Screams and screeches echo though out the interior of the city. People franticly fleeing from all direction with no course of escape. Some citizens that were fleeing fell, forced to the ground, their bodies shredded, pulled apart, bits and pieces vanishing, leaving only a half-eaten corpse. A man with a scar on his face retreated inside a burning house.
” FA, FB, FC,” he yelled enter the burning building. “Where are you?!”
Three girls huddled together cowering at the flames and the outside screeching. The smallest girl trying to protect the group curling her body around the two others from the flames and collapsing roof. The man approached the girls being mindful of the flames. Suddenly a burning rafter fell, engulfing the girls in flame. The man frantically made a rush for the pile. The burning rafter levitated off the three girls. Their clothing intact and all three girl startle but alive; however, the smallest one was severely burnt throughout her back and the right side of her face. The burned girl yelled in pain and agony as her two other girls tried to comfort her. The man approached the girls at a much faster rate but was struck and launched against a wall by an invisible force.
“Sister,” said the eldest girl to the burnt child, “Please calm down, it is father.”
“We have to move,” said the father shrugging off the pain.” You two, carry your little sister. I will move ahead to make sure it is safe so follow me and focus only on me. Do the two of you understand?
Both girls nodded. The burnt girl came to grips with the pain holding both her sister’s hands as comfort. The two girls shoulder the injured child and lead her to their father which the father then embraced them endearingly. The girls then proceed to follow him out of the burning house. The party began heading to the outskirts of the city. Passing many bloodied allies and blocks. The screams of the citizens still continued haunting the city and frightened the girls. The party made their way to the outer perimeter of the city’s main road exit which split in three different directions, one road to the north, another to the south and one the west. The two girls, both exhausted from carrying the youngest child, had stopped.
“Father,” cried the tallest child. “We can’t go any farther.”
The father stopped to allow the girls to catch up but nudged to keep moving. Looking back along the road towards the city the man soon spotted a caravan of four horses moving two wagons racing, one behind the other, both wagons filled to the brim with people, at full human sprinting speed. Two men at front of the caravan urged the horses to move faster while a young boy driving the other wagon urged his horses to keep pace. The first driver holding rein had the stature of a soldier equipped with a long sword and shield while the other looked to be dressed in a robe with a books on his lap. The wagons headed away from the city passed the three girls and now were heading to the father.
“Stop!” yelled the father at the two man. “Please stop. I have children, please!”
The father intercepted the horse’s course in an effort to stop it. Out of fear the wagon tipping over the driver forced horses to stop, nearly trampling the father. Halting both wagons.
“Do you have a death wish?!” yelled the driver.” We have not the time for this, whatever chasing will see where we are. MOVE or I order the horses to trample you.”
“Sir, I implore you, take us with you.” The Father on his knees pleaded to the driver.” I have three daughters, two exhausted, one injured. Please, I’m begging you.”
“No,” replied the driver. “Our horses can barely move with this many people and still run at a fast pace to escape this carnage.”
“But, sir. I…”
“I said no.” interrupted the driver.” Now move, quickly.”
A loud blood curdling screech was heard a short distance. The father gazed at horses as they were wheezing heavily and sweating profusely. Some people in the cart urged the father to move so they may pass quickly. He looked at his three daughters who drew closer to him and gazed at youngest child who got burnt. His head facing downward at the ground, clenching his fist, restraining his tears of desperation and feared: he looked at both men asked take only his daughters.
“Commander,” cried the young driver from behind. “I believe I can accommodate all four of them. Send them here, hurry. Please everyone make room for four”
“Thank you, kind sir, thank you.” Said the father sending his daughters to the second wagon.
“No more jibber-jabber,” said the head driver mushing his horses forward as well as the young boy driver. “We move now. Boy you better keep up or risk being left behind.”
The wagon up front began to move again, towards the north, with more acceleration leaving the second wagon behind. The three girls were placed on the wagon mixed tightly with the crowd; however, when the father tried to come aboard the wheels began creek. The father jumped off fearing the wheels of the cart would break.
“Move, just move.” Screamed the father to the young driver.
The wagon began moving slowly accelerating bit by bit. The father, unable to ride inside the wagon, desperately tried run to keep up to with the cart. The screeching from the city was drawing closer and closer to the wagon. The father soon began to lose his breath before he clung to the edge of the chart.
“FA, I have to stop and rest I can’t keep going” said the father panting heavily.
“Then rest on the cart father, please.” Urged the eldest daughter. “There is room just get on before we go any faster.”
The father held his daughter’s hand who held tightly, tears in her eye’s, tried to help him onto the chart but the wagon’s wheel began creaking the moment he legs got on the edge of the wagon step. The screeches edged closer and closer to the wagon. The father leaped off and tumbled to the ground. The wagon began a much faster pace too fast to travel by foot. It wasn’t long before the wagon was no longer in sight. The father, wheezing for air, his eye’s running of tears, curled himself to a ball. He closed his eye awaiting his death. Screeching began closing in to the father. Then suddenly silence occurred around the distraught man followed by hissing noises. The father looked around seeing nothing but shadows on the ground, he is able hear the creatures’ hissing some mere feet away surrounding him. The father looked around more and spotted a hooded figure, who was coming closer, at a distance. The hooded figure came to close visible proximity. The hooded figure removed the hood which revealed a young man’s face, his long dark hair, his face covered in rags all but covered his right eye.
“Run, you fool!” yelled the father. “Run, less you’d be eaten alive too.”
“Tell me, where did those two wagons go?” asked the hooded man.
“Why is that important?” replied the father who looked puzzled at the young man’s response.
A silence came before the two individualizes all which was slightly drowned by the hissing sounds around the father. The hooded man approached the distressed father. This enabled the father to get a closer look at the young man’s eye color which was emanated a bright green hue enveloping his pupil. It was then the father realized why the man showed no fear given that it was obvious that they were surrounded. The father retracted back, his face in utter horror, away from the young man.
“I will ask one more time.” Said the young man. “Where did they go?”
The father stayed quiet. The young man pointed to the man’s right hand then to his own palm. The father looked at his right hand and saw a black mark which engulfed a center of his palm.
“As long as they have that brand I will continue to pursue them.” said the young man calmly. “They are required to be sacrificed. It is no different than your countries saying that it is a “necessary evil.” So tell me where their end will be quick and as painless, I assure you.”
“Why? Why are you doing this?! What is compelling you to slaughter hundreds of people and…”
“Why?!” interrupted the young man now angered. “Why, you ask? Why to exact revenge on this country, its lords, and its king. They proclaimed my family and all other branches of it as heretics and slaughter countless lives in an effort to hide the truth. No sir, no sir. Do not play the victim. In this country there are no victims just necessary evils. I alone am that result their action. The life the lords neglected to extinguish and since you refuse to help me in my endeavors, I will take my leave and rely on luck to guide me.”
The hooded man headed towards the west road away from the father and snapped his fingers, which made the hissing noises turned to loud screeches. The father began crying out in horror as he was dragged and tussled. His body being mangled, and torn. The young man walked farther to the west road away, hearing the father’s cries for mercy then followed by silence.
Chapter one: From Thieves to Soldiers.
The sun beamed against the clouded mountain sky. The silhouette of the mountains descended downward allowing the light to emanate to the tall abbey tower. It was then the bells of the abbey began ringing its bells which signified the beginning of the day. Merchants began setting shops, each shop keeper raving about their prime products of goods and services they would provide. Blacksmiths began turning their furnaces. The banging of their hammers to metal could be heard from the outer perimeters of their buildings. The streets and alleys slowly come alive with its populous of greeters and entrepreneurs.
People flooded the alley to part take of these exchanges of goods and services: some running errands while others simply eyeballing the goods they can’t afford. Children were playing and running though the array of people and laughing with amongst each other, their parents mostly likely busy shopping or haggling the merchants for lower prices. Some children; however, are bit more deviant than others, but not by choice, no, but by survival. It is these children, some homeless, abandoned, nowhere to go, no place to call home, that these youths tread a impoverished path. A country of a poor economy and civil unrest make for an unfavorable condition to raise or nurture children.
It is here two young boys, one older child and one younger child. Both boys, with worn-down clothing, their face dirtied and exhausted, concoct a plan to steal food from some of the merchants and farmers. The older boy, of say fourteen or fifteen years of age, his hair curly black hair and jet black eyes, His white facial expression which were covered in minor cuts and bruising seemed to indicate he had hardships from his past. His eyes sharp and ever peering, almost intimating for younger individuals. His body figure was slightly masculine, his arms slightly toned and well defined in physical nature. His size and height was impressive and would easily mistaken as a adult to many children. He looked out from a corner to choose the target to steal from and looked at his right towards his younger friend who was adjacent to him.
This younger child, of age of twelve or thirteen years of age, his head slightly bigger than most of his body, his hair frizzled brown hair, pale white meek face with large bright green eyes. He had bags under his eyes which illustrated has lack of sleep. He had a constant worried expression on his face, the type of eyes which people of intense anxiety would suffer from. His body figure was slender and malnourished, a near contrast to body type compared to that of his companion. He was a look out while his older companion who at the time was looking out to see who can they easily steal from at minimum risk.
“Are you sure we should be doing this Ferras?” Asked the young boy while having his hand towards up to his chest.
“We have no other choice, Nicolas. ” Replied the older boy. “We tried to get hired but all of the owners here refused to hire ‘children’. We got nothing else to go by. We have eaten since in almost two days. We can only survive on water for so long.”
“I know but…” replied but was interrupted by has growling stomach.
“See, what did I tell you? Now be quite and help me find a good target.”
The two boys began selecting the right vendor shop keep to try to steal from. They spotted a big chunky of man, which Ferras assumed to be slow runner. This merchant had just finished setting a rather small supply of potatoes, carrots and smoked meats. The shop keeper then proceeded to look for any possible customer. It was then that Ferras approached the entrepreneur and started a conversation on his pricing. The shop keeper was at first glaring at Ferras attire, think him a thief, but with Ferras’ tone of voice and mannerism he eased his suspicion of Ferras. Nicolas, though hesitant, slip on the right side of the food stand and proceeded with grabbing the produce from the shelf try his best to be inconspicuous.
“So tell me sir, why are your foods prices so high? Ask Ferras to the shop keeper, trying to distract him.
“I don’t see a problem with my prices.” Replied the shop keep in a confident tone. “I’m a farmer and I sell directly to my clients. You see all these other merchants? They would sell a fruit and vegetable with an inflated price. In fact, I am actually losing you see. All farmers which sell at low rates to merchants which these merchants then sell at a higher price to offset for the travel they would endure. The fact that also these past year’s harvest has been the worst for many of farmers which in turn results of the high prices. This only proves the fact that these are the deals you should be seeking. So no sir, I believe my prices are a fair trade. So how about it 20 bronze marks or two silver marks as equivalent for, let say... a chunk of smoked meats along with a dozen carrots.
“I don’t know; it still seems the products are pretty high a price.” Replied Ferras noticing Nicolas grabbing the produce to the corner of the stand. “Perhaps the price can be a little lower.” He continued trying to keep the shop keeper’s eyes off Nicolas’ direction.
The merchant began to be increasingly more agitated at Ferras’ haggling. Nicolas was just reached a bit farther to get the carrots off the table. The merchant began shooing Ferras away in an effort to see other customers more likely to buy and began looking around for more people to suede come. It was then the merchant spotted Nicolas arms which had just finished grabbing sixth carrot off the table. The merchant out of anger screamed at Nicolas tell him to drop the vegetable. Nicolas fled escaping the merchant’s and dropping the foods he just grabbed. Ferras, knowing the planed failed and might be caught, made a break the opposite direction. The merchant, realizing that both boys were in cahoots with each other, through a wooden box squarely at Ferras head knocking him unconscious.
Ferras awoke to find himself bond by his hand and legs which he then tried to struggle to get free but the rope was tightly woven to brake free from. He was dragged between alley way to a tall tower, meanwhile Nicolas made a slow pursuit behind Ferras and the merchant which was dragging him. The merchant made his way to an open court yard in front of the abbey where the bell from earlier. There a guard who, at the time, was setting a group of ruffians onto metal cage on a wagon. The merchant told the scenario which had transpired. The soldier, which he jotted down the account that had been relayed to him, looked at Ferras with disgust and simply told the merchant to leave the boy for incarceration. The merchant left, hoping for a reward and kicked Ferras in the gut, out of frustration. The soldier then proceeded to place Ferras in a empty metal cell locking it with a keys. Nicolas finally came out an approached Ferras’ cell staying out of sight of the soldier.
“Are you all right?” whispered Nicolas to Ferras in a frightened tone. “What I am going to do?” Nicolas was shaking all over his body as he breathing was becoming more heavy. His eye nearly watering with tears.
“Just calmed down.” Replied Ferras in a soft voice. “See if you can take the from the soldier.”
Ferras observed the soldier and proceeded to advance slowly to him. Nicolas approached the soldier revealing appearance. The soldier was equipped with a long sword but no armor. His face looked plump and sweaty. The soldier looked exhausted in being at his mumbling profanities to himself. The soldier looked around and glanced at couple of beautiful woman escorts near him. He waved for them to come. They soon approached and the soldier ask how much they would charge for their services, which the two escorts replied of two gold marks or twenty silvers marks. He was astonished of their asking price and looked at what he had in is pockets, which was a meager ten bronze marks. The soldier then treaded to haggle with them, but to no avail. The women left the soldier but, in a flirtatious manner, instructed him to seek them if he gets the funds. Nicolas be hearing the conversation waited for the soldier to finally get close cells.
“Mm,” murmured the soldier to himself. “Fine beauties but their price so high. Guess everyone is struggling too. I myself couldn’t even afford that much even if I just received pay.”
The soldier leaning at the wagon still fixed at the women who at a corner looking for future clients. Nicolas approached the soldier cautiously seeing the keys hinged at his left side of his waist. Nicolas made a slow reach at had the keys in hand but the soldier sneezed the direction of Nicolas and noticed him trying to get the keys. The soldier grabbed Nicolas by his wrist clutching his hand all the way around the young boy’s wrist.
“What are you doing boy?” Asked the soldier. “ Come here to free your friend, eh? I have the mind to beat the thief out of you.”
“Let me go!” Replied Nicolas struggling too free himself of the soldier’s grip. Nicolas tried desperately to escape his body trembling with fear. He then recollected the soldier’s earlier conversation with the women and made a proposal. “I, I, I can get you the gold marks you need for your ah… for the escorts.”
“hmmm?! What does a boy like you know of making money? You’ll probably steal it.” A slight pause came over the soldier. The soldier pondered and releasing Nicolas wrist which made Nicolas fall to the ground. He pondered a bit more and had an idea. A conniving grin came over the soldier smile. “ All right, I’ll tell you what? If you manage to give me two gold marks. I will release your friend; however, these wagons will be transported by noon which will be when the abbey’s bell will ring. So make haste, boy.” The soldier chuckled at himself think of the impossibility of the young boy acquiring the large sum of funds.
Nicolas made a frantic dash trying to swayed people for a loan or any change of equivalence but his efforts bore no fruit. The people of this town simply had no interest in helping a beggar. Nicolas asked even the shop keeps for some assistance but no one, understandably, would help this child. It was a city of the poor. Nicolas realized that he had underestimate the large some that was task to retrieved. He had no means of payment of the ransom. He heart weighed not have Ferras around for guidance. “Oh no, oh no. What am I going to do?” Nicolas thought to himself. but he had no other choice and limited time. Against what he believed in, he had no other alternative he would have to steal it.
He looked around for people who satchels were out and unsecured. He spotted, in a crowd, a hood figure walking with a satchel. The hood figure had just made a purchase of a abhorrent amount of food which he paid with five gold marks. The hood figure made his exist caring the heap of food leaving the shop keeper, who was stupefied on the amount of money which was spent at his shop. Nicolas took notice and, in a panic and not thinking, made a lunge grabbing the satchel off the owner’s shoulder and made his way to the large crowd to make his escape. Nicolas made an raced through a dark alley hitting a dead end corner. Nicolas looked behind him to see if he was persuade. He looked at the place of the hood figure located and saw nothing but people walking pass. He sat down and blew a sigh of relief. Then Nicolas began rummaging through the satchel. What Nicolas had seen was an array of items: a extremely detailed map of the country, series of aged old scrolls bond carefully together by a old cloth, and the six big clanging coin pouches fill with nothing but slightly ashen gold marks.
Nicolas, feeling safe grabbed only two marks from one the pouches and began placing everything back in order. It was by this time the hood figure made his way to the corner towards Nicolas location. Nicolas finished organizing everything back into place. Nicolas ran the corner and fell impacting the hood figure. The hooded figure grab Nicolas by the collar and pushed him against the wall where the two individuals met face to face. Nicolas was now able to see a close eye to his assailant. The hooded figure was a man looked to be in his early twenties with long tangled black hair, a broad chin. The man’s right eye was a bright green; however, his left face had severe scars. A portion his face wearing a wrapped to cover his left eye. The hood man grabbed the two marks from Nicolas’ hand released him.
“Boy, you know stealing to be wrong.” Said the hooded man. “Do you know the consequences of the steal especially in this country. What you did will be deemed sinful. If I were to turn you in, you will most likely be subjected to torture or even worse. Do you know that?”
“Yes.” Replied the Nicolas his head facing downward in shame.
“Then why would you do it then?”
“ ...Because I have no other choice.”
Nicolas explained the story from the beginning of Ferras and his arrival of not having any food for day. The hooded man, who listened carefully to the tale of two homeless tikes in desperation. The man had his arms crossed in contemplation. He looked at Nicolas’ eyes closely and approached his bag. He pulled out his one of his pouches of gold marks. He still had the two out from when Nicolas had taken. He showed the two gold marks Nicolas.
“I will give you these two marks but only if me see your right eye.” Asked the hooded figure. “That is all I ask of you.”
“Why?” asked Nicolas apprehensively. “Why do you need my eye?”
“You won’t then? your friend’s fate may will be in your hands. I will not hurt you child. I will only use you as a test.”
Nicolas approached the man accepting his terms. The hooded figure gently placed his left hand over Nicolas’ right eye. Nicolas closed his eyes in intimidation of the hood figure, his body shake slightly out of fear. The man’s right hand emanated a small light around his left hand and right eye. The light slowly dimmed away. Nicolas looked to the hooded man confused. The hood man raised his right hand covering his right eye, while a mild tingling sensation came over Nicolas’ right eye.
“Good, so it does work.” Murmured the hood man to himself. He gave Nicolas the marks he was promised and began leaving the dead end corner.
“What did you do?” asked a Nicolas, perplexed. Then the bell of the abbey began to ring making Nicolas forget the question and raced off leaving the hood man behind. “ I never got your name, sir.” Asked as he turning back to thank the hooded man.
“My name you say? Its Asherd but do not repeat it to no one."
Nicolas nodded, acknowledging the remarks, and rushed to location of his friend captivity. Two soldier were readying the wagons for transport. One soldier was the previous man Nicolas arranged the deal and the other looked to be his commander. Nicolas had just made it on time.
“Wait!” yelled Nicolas to the two soldiers. “I have the marks you wanted you. Now release my friend.”
“You have the marks?” Asked the plump soldier in astonishment.” Show them to me then.”
Nicolas rose his fingers and showed the two soldiers the gold marks he had received. Both soldiers were astonished on what they were seeing and chuckled at one another. The subordinate soldiers approached Nicolas and grab the marks from him. While his commanding office open Ferras’ cell. Ferras tried making his way out but the commanding officer was hindering his exit with his spear pointing at him.
“Well, good job,” Said the commanding officer with a huge grin on his face. “You just convicted yourself of thievery.”
“What, no!” replied Nicolas in shock. “I didn’t steal anything.”
“Ooh, but you did. Said the subordinate soldier grabbing Nicolas’ arm. “You see those marks are only able to be paid by the people of nobility, which by the looks of you and your friend have no affiliation with. So, in fact, we have all the evidence to conclude that you stole them.”
“ You lied to me.” A struggling Nicolas said. The soldier proceeded to pull Nicolas towards the cell. “ let me go, let me go!” Nicolas’ struggle was in vain the soldier’s strength out weighted his own. Nicolas was thrown to the cell with Ferras. The soldiers laughing began running the horse out of the town east towards the mountain’s base.
A hour of travel had passed. The cells of the other prisoners were loud, some even mumbled rumors of their torture or execution. Ferras looked at the road way ahead and saw a fort of wood and concrete. Nicolas looked at Ferras who was curled up at a corner.
“I’m sorry,” Nicolas murmured to Ferras, his face dug into his knees. “Because of me we got caught. Now look at us going to prison and possibly tortured. All because of me.”
Ferras sat next to Nicolas and playfully brush Nicolas’ head with his hand, comforting him. “No, this wasn’t your fault. It is actually mine. I underestimated the merchant. Who knew that he had a throwing arm? We’ll make it through this, just like when we made through traveling from Barton to Nesh. I promise.” Nicolas raised his head and smiled, a more relieved look on his face, to Ferras.
The wagon slowly approached the steel gate of the fortress. The fortress banner flew against the wind west away from the mountains revealing a beautiful rich blue flag embroiled with gold laces which made a figure of a one fourth of an infinity only rotated ninety degrees downward. The gate opened, the soldiers manning the doors pulling it manually, upwards. The fortress was wide empty open space, at the center of the fortress was an elevated stage for hangings, the rope still in full view. A herd of other prisoners were there, the group which counted above three hundred. The prisoners were let out their cells and cuffed. The walls had two big firmly closed doors, surrounded by twenty armored soldiers each, which led two tall segment of the fortress. The first segment was the crows den, facing the mountains, watching out for invaders. The second segment, a heavily armored door set in the middle, a window, which had the blue embroiled flag flying high, looking out of the stage. It was clear that area was the command station which operated everything. The walls had a rope hanging towards stepping stones and were being occupied by watchful archers. The door of the command station opened. A group of men existed the doors. Two Knights, covered head to toe with brimming armor, exist the door first. One elderly man, his face pale white with a mole on his left chick. dressed in fine silk gold attire, exited the door last. The trio made their way to the top of the stage. The elderly man looked at the prisoners with disgust, Ferras and Nicolas mixed in the group together focused their attention to the elderly man. The elderly man inhaled and sighed.
“I am Armin of Levi and I am your lord. You all a here for your crimes you have committed.” Yelled the elderly man grabbing the attention of the prisoners. “ Your all face to your punishment here; however, his majesty give his blessings to pardon your all sins. He will provide amnesty from you sins, provided that you will surrender yourself and be part of the militia.
A sudden quiet come over the prisoners. One prisoner was not keen to the idea of being a soldier demanded to leave, claiming his innocents. The prisoner, cursing, asked why should he join if he had not committed no crime. The belligerent prisoner was taken to up to the stage by one of armored Knights. “All of you have lost your right to act as normal citizens of this country the moment you all decided to commit your crimes. I frankly do not care if you do… or do not accept the terms. You will be able to redeem your wrongs by serving this country but if you refuse there will be repercussion for your actions.” The elderly lord nodded his head to the Knight. The knight then dragged the struggling prisoner to the center of the stage and wrapped the loose naught around his neck. The prisoner struggled to get away, the other prisoners looked in horror and fear. The knight pulled the lever removing the floor board under the prisoner. Everything was now quiet. Nicolas frightened, who was behind Ferras, held tightly Ferras’ tarnished sleeve. The prisoner’s body hung there motionless. “You all choose where to go. Do you serve your sentence and risk losing your life here, or do you join be men of the militia and redeem your freedom? The chose is yours. Fight for great land of Amestria and its king or be subjected her judgement.”