Sunday, April 17. 2011
“At the foot of the mountain sits the Shrine of Falling Blossoms. For as long as I remember it was tended to by a single monk.”
“Master you told this story already,” interjected Yllen.
“The young lord ain’t heard it!” Gundrea protested.
“I'm sure he wouldn't get it either,” Yllen switched to the other side of the path, knocking a stone down the hill.
“Get what?” asked Roderick. He was slightly more bearable out of his foppish garb.
Yllen still hadn't spoken to him since the fight though.
Gundrea shook his broom irritably, tramping up the road. “Alright so there was a demon see? He was trashing up the place and...”
Continue reading "Fallen Blossoms"
Wednesday, April 6. 2011
Yllen punched the wall. The airship groaned in response. They were two days out of port and she was growing to hate its confines.
Gundrea’s head popped round the door. “Almost ready for the officers’ dinner,”
“Can you-?” Yllen broke off halfway through, ashamed of even asking. “Yes, of course,” she sucked on her bruised knuckles.
“Something got you down?” Gundrea trundled toward her, a picture of concern.
“I’m fine master. Just give me a minute,”
“Getting on your nerves is he?” Gundrea said.
“No. I can deal with Roderick,”
Gundrea chuckled. “Boys will be boys. You sure you don’t want me to have a word?”
“I would never do that to him,” Yllen remarked, heading back towards the galley.
Continue reading "Falling with Style"
Thursday, March 31. 2011
Yllen stopped dead on the threshold of the courtyard. She performed the Sweeper Technique of Dispelling Evil Illusions. The slap did nothing to dispel the sight. Gundrea chuckled in the background.
An airship sat in the courtyard. Its sleek lines painted amber and black evoked a distinctly insectile feel. Indeed across its prow was splashed the name Cloud Wasp. A massive balloon crested the surrounding building. Dozens of ropes criss-crossed the yard, tethering the ship to the ground. It strained against them constantly, providing a chorus of creaking hemp. Crew bustled about like ants, tending to the ship and loading equipment.
Yllen found her voice eventually. “Master, isn’t this a little ostentatious?”
“Oh I didn’t pay anything,”
“Then how did you get us passage?”
Gundrea set off toward the ship. Yllen looked down at her robes, pristine and white. What was he planning?
Continue reading "On the Rise"
Thursday, March 24. 2011
Yllen wandered the estate alone. The chill of the servants’ corridors were a stark contrast to the warmth of the great halls. They were two worlds, intertwined but never one. Yllen had gotten lost many times moving between the two. Today she travelled the main passage from the servants’ quarters to the central manse. Other servants passed her constantly. Rarely was she acknowledged. No one talked to a sweeper’s apprentice.
Gundrea had disappeared earlier. In a subdued tone he’d told her to put an ear to the ground while he arranged transport. Yllen was happy enough to be alone. The quiet murmur of conversation drifted through doors in the corridor occasionally. Yllen stopped at one and strained her ears. She gathered a few snatches before continuing on. Coming to a junction she turned off abruptly and with a furtive glance quickened her pace.
Continue reading "In the meanwhile"
Friday, March 11. 2011
“At the foot of the mountain sits the Shrine of Falling Blossoms. For as long as I remember it was tended to by a single monk. He kept the trees, swept the shrine and took the offerings left for him by pilgrims. The shrine knew eternal peace. War and plague passed it by.
It was one day that a band of local villagers came to the shrine. Many bore wounds and blood. The monk aided them as best he could but the villagers refused to stay. When he asked what had occurred they told him a demon had appeared in the village. It had torn apart their houses in a rage and burned away their crops. They had scattered and ran but now the demon came this way. The monk insisted they stay but again they refused.
The elders urged the monk to come with them for he was well liked amongst the villagers and none wanted to see him dead. The monk refused as the villagers had. He told them that if they wished to leave they could then returned to tending his shrine. The villagers fretted but fled without him.
Sure enough the demon came up the path. A great beast it was, skin blacker than coal with eyes of piercing blue. It bore the dust and blood of the village upon its breast, proud of the terrors it inflicted. The monk sat by his shrine, lost in simple contemplation. When the demon stepped into the glade the grass shrivelled and burned, the whole shrine grew dark. The demon roared and beat its chest. The monk bowed his head.
Continue reading "The Trouble with Demons"
Thursday, March 10. 2011
The hall lay before her. Ancient banners adorned its pillars. Intricate rugs decorated its floors. It was a place of majesty for lord or peasant. You could taste the history.
Yllen tried to forget all that. She allowed her senses to recede, the sights, the smells to fade. She briefly glimpsed herself, a wiry figure clad in saffron robes. Then she reached beyond her body and brushed against years of dust. Glowing patterns shined beneath neglect. She struggled to grasp them, following them with senses that didn't exist. The harder she pushed the more it felt like cobwebs wrapped themselves around her. Dirt and filth pressed down so disturbingly that she panicked. She rubbed her watering eyes and cursed. The moment was lost. Yllen unslung her broom and began to sweep, trying to remember what she'd seen.
Gundrea squatted on the floor, testing a tile with his finger. He held up the digit for inspection. There was the grey of dust. Yllen hung her head.
“I have failed you master,”
Gundrea stood up and leaned on his broom. His sprightly frame brimmed with energy. The lines on his face fixed his expression as vaguely amiable. He wore robes as old as he was, faded long past any discernable colour.
“Instead of mourning you could just clean it up,”
Yllen hastily slapped her broom over the spot.
Gundrea nodded in approval and began limping out of the hall. “And that’s the east hall clear. Let’s go get breakfast. You should really remember rule 77,”
“Always look both ways before crossing the street?”
Gundrea paused. Yllen, right behind him, had to stop short to keep from colliding.
“I meant rule 92 obviously,”
“A cardboard box is not a disguise?” Yllen kept a straight face.
Gundrea remonstrated her. “Add this one in. Don’t go crying over spilt milk,”
Yllen mimed writing on a notepad. She fell in step as he started moving again.
Continue reading "Tea Shop Trouble"
« previous page (Page 2 of 2, totaling 16 entries)