The Messenger - Chapter 3
Rule-of-Three prompts chosen:
- betrayal is in the air
- relationships unravel or strengthen
- the impending misfortune foreshadowed in the 1st prompt comes to pass, but one or more characters laughs at it
Prologue (not part of the challenge)
Chapter 3 (here)
the pyramids, that was quite a storm, wasn't it?" Like everybody else
in Renaissance, I had hurried inside as soon as a regular evening
suddenly was turned into the blackest night. Most of them believed it
was just a bout of weird weather, which wouldn't be unusual in this
"I wasn't afraid at all!" Several other young voices seconded
this brave statement. They all belonged to a crowd of children that had
gathered around me as soon as I had crossed the little bridge near the
pub. I offered some praise and allowed two of the girls to take my
"Keo, will you continue the story? The one about Star, the Traveller?"
now, even some adults were following me. If asked, they would pretend
that they just had some business to attend to at the market - of course
they did not waste their time by listening to my tales. That's why I
made sure my voice carried well enough over the whole place, despite the
merchants and other entertainers.
The annual Midnight-Market was
always a great event. However, why it was held in a season that was
prone to sudden weather-changes was beyond me. But I've learned fast
that the locals were a little weird. It suited me well, just like all
the strangers that passed through it on occasions like this.
right, listen - listen to me. Catch the words, before they catch you.
What do you know about Star, the Traveller?" My voice had them under its
spell immediately. Not all of them, that would have been to obvious.
Just the little ones, they were easy.
"It is a shooting star!" "It is magical!" "No, I know! It's an enchanted prince!"
with my audience, I let my gaze sweep over them, trapping a few more in
my net. The older girls were especially susceptible to my pale
"Yes, there is truth in all of that. And yet, the true nature of Star was about to become his doom."
hesitated - the entranced crowd didn't mind, believing it was part of
the story. But what I sensed in that moment was worth a tale of its own.
I hardly believed this was happening, although the signs had been
unmistakable for those who could recognize them. Just a storm from the
Roundeli Mountains - indeed.
"His light shone strong and a long tail
of glittering dust was Star's companion. Unerringly, he headed towards
the Crystal Castle, which already shimmered at the horizon."
she was. Her blue eyes locked with mine and I knew she had been caught
by my voice, too - a sound that could break even her bond. She was
small, if I had not towered over the crowd, she might have had to come
closer to see me. Instead, I could do nothing to keep her from turning
away, reconnecting with her master - not unless I revealed more than I
wanted right now.
"Star was so close to his goal, he could almost
touch it." Like I could touch the tender cheek of a little boy on his
mother's arm – both such an easy prey.
"But the Shadow was closer."
widened, a collective sigh betrayed every single one of my listeners
and at the far side of the marketplace I noticed a fish-merchant warding
off evil with a gesture.
“Star's light shall scorch the dark fiend!” cried someone nearby.
For an instant, all was silent - until my laughter broke through it and welcomed the Shadow which was descending on me.
third part for the "Rule Of Three Blogfest" was not easy, because this
character is brand new and did not feature in the original idea of
flash-fiction "The Messenger". I had to do some brainstorming and let my
Muse run quite free, until Keo finally came alive.
I'm curious about
the other "3rd character"s and of course what kind of prompts we'll get
for the finale. If you don't know yet about the rules for this
challenge, look here for example.
please review if you like it or even if you don't! Speculate on what
will happen in chapter 4, if you want - I know it will depend at least
partially on the prompts ;)
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(this was original posted first in my Livejournal, including comments)