Wednesday, October 5, 2011

#REN3 / Rule Of Three - Chapter 1

The Messenger - Chapter 1

Rule-of-Three prompts chosen:
- there is fear of an impending misfortune
- there is an argument
- someone might fall in love

word-count: 599

I could not tell what I noticed first, that the storm outside had stopped or that my back hurt like hell and I had a mean cramp in my leg.
"Curse it!" Stifling a moan, I groped for some hold on the nearby wall and pulled myself up. All the while there were far more 'pleasantries' of that sort on my mind, but I kept my mouth shut and the thoughts in the safe place where I was sure that it could not hear them. To concentrate on this was a good distraction from the pain. Only a fool would curse a Shadow - which was not only inviting misfortune, but feeding it, too.

When I stood more or less upright, which was as crooked as an old crone at that moment, I took in my surroundings, trying to remember where I was and how I got here. There was no doubt about the 'why'. There was the unmistakable weight of the bundle in my hand, the one which wasn't holding on to the rough mantelpiece of the little hut. Nobody who had ever been recruited by a Shadow could forget for one second how the presence of its 'gifts' felt -
**Stop wasting time! Go! Find the Chosen One!**
- or how annoyingly painful its voice could be in your head, not to mention its almost omnipresence. One could get used to the headache and one could learn to keep at least some thoughts private. The brightest spot of midday sun or the darkest hole where no light casts any shadow offered an occasional moment of peace, too. However, that sound - this booming and yet whispering voice - it always sent shivers down my spine and made me feel slightly sick.
**Stop bothering me then! I've always fulfilled your tasks, haven't I?**
There was no response, and I was glad for it. It was true, I had learned to talk back to my master with my mind, which seemed to impress it more than spoken words. But this was as far as I ever wanted to have an argument with an Itaranga.
As I stretched my sore muscles, I wondered briefly how others got along with their Shadow, if there even were any. For all I knew, mine could be the only one which had decided to stop being a story to spook little children and I'm the only one it had singled out to do its ghastly work.

When I finally stepped out into the street, I was a bit confused and worried. Just a moment before I had glanced into the loathsome bundle and there had not quite been what I had expected. It was true, I had seen worse, like blood-talismans and once even a hand. This could even be easy. However, this town was small, known as Renaissance. It might be difficult to find the Chosen One this time - and perhaps even more difficult to deliver my message.
The noise of people lead me around a corner and I found myself in a little but busy marketplace. The smell of a booth full of river-fish made me move on, marveling briefly at some grilled desert-snakes - when a deep, rich voice caused me to turn around until I found the speaker.
He was tall and thin, but obviously of a fine stature. His auburn locks were short and charmingly unruly. I felt myself move towards him, wishing he would notice me. How odd. His profile revealed a longish, strange and somewhat elegant face. And then he turned and I saw his eyes.


So, this is the first part/chapter for the "Rule Of Three Blogfest".
Since I got so many lovely commentaries on my Campaigner flash-fiction "The Messenger", I decided to continue it on this occasion. However, you should be able to read it without knowing these 200 words. If you do or want to, they can be considered as the prologue.
I hope I understood the rules right - and if not, I hope somebody will tell me how to do better.
In any case, I like what I wrote and I'm curious how my vague plan for the next parts are going to be influenced by the future prompts.

Reviews are very welcome ;)
Please, give me a hint if you are taking part in this challenge, too, and if you have posted your entry already so that I can read it, too.

The other chapters and the above mentioned prologue can be found here:
05.09.2011: Prologue
04.10.2011: Chapter 1 (here)
10.10.2011: Chapter 2
19.10.2011: Chapter 3
26.10.2011: Chapter 4

(this was original posted first in my Livejournal, including comments)  

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