Child of Darkness Chapter Nine

Fiction By Keri // 12/23/2009

 

9
Isaias swallows nervously as eight eyes fasten on him.
            “Ye needn't be all lookin' at me like I be a bloody criminal about to confess to some evil deed. Because I ain't.”
            “Ain't what,” I ask, unable to resist the barb, “a criminal or about to confess?”
            He grins a little, acknowledging his mistake. “Neither. Annie and I are...” he clears his throat. “Brother and sister.” He stops and stares at the ground.
            “We know that. The question was what are you doing in Vangaardewen?” Danielle’s voice doesn't even slightly conceal her irritation and impatience.
            “We-uh” He swallows, looking suddenly sad.
            “We was lookin' ta see more o' the world.” Annie cut in. “After our parents went and died. We did nay have many prospects so we just started wanderin'. We didn't even know that we were in Gnalasa until you told us.” She carefully stresses the kingdom's new name and from the direction her eyes slid for a fraction of a second, she did so just to spite Danielle who, looks suitably spited.
            “I thought you wanted Isaias to explain.” I say before Danielle can voice her offence.
            “I didnae think he'd go to lookin' like he was gonna be blubberin'. Besides, I thought I would.” she shrugs, “I suppose that the wound must be healin' faster that I thought it would. Either that or I be more heartless than anyone supposed.” I hear Daniele mutter something about the latter being most likely. But I ignore her, hope Annie didn't hear, and address the two of them.
            “We are traveling to Batnekor. If you have nowhere to go and have no more food, I think we could strike a deal.”
            “A deal?” Danielle leans in close to me and whispers, “Natty, we owe them nothing and they have nothing we need.”
            I concede the point. “True, we don't really need their help but I can't just let them starve to death. Besides perhaps they may turn out to be more than what they seem to be.”
            Danielle looks over her shoulder at the two who are also talking in whispers, “My dear brother that would be a very easy achievement for anything, anywhere to be more than what those two seems to be.”
            “Just trust me on this one, alright?”
            “Alright. But you had better not be sealing our death.” We break apart and I turn back to Isaias and Annie who seem are also consulting one another in hushed tones. When Annie steps back from where she was leaning over her brother and faces us, I see that both faces are very red but Annie looks very angry, and Isaias, rather embarrassed.
            “So what is this deal bein' then?” He asks.
            “A very simple agreement. You guide us to and through Batnekor and we share our supplies with you.” I state and then tack on, “Oh, and no one tries to kill anyone else.”
            “It be soundin' like a nice'n reasonin' plan. But did it not occur to you that me brother 'n' I might not want t'go alls the way back to our homeland?”
            “Would it you be agreein' to us only guiding ye part ways and leaving once we get to the capital?”
            “What makes you think we're traveling to the capitol?”
            “Where else would you be going?” Korin relaxes that answer but he still looks warily on the two Batnekorians. I can see that neither my sister nor my guard like my plan or their new companions. Then again, it doesn't look like their new companions like either my plan or their newly acquired fellow travelers . Oh well, I think, they'll all four just have to get used to it.
            “Korin, please cut Isaias loose.”
            “Yes your majesty.” He looks like he would rather be leading him with the rope but he does as I asked him.
            Annie clears her throat. “Can we seal the bargain with a -uh-” she seems to choke the word out, "friendly meal?”
            “Can you two not eat and walk?” Danielle voice is like a bow string tight as it is.
            Annie glares back at her “We ain't eaten for a bit remember? We have discovered that when one ain't eaten, one'll be find hiself pretty weak so no, we can nae eat'n'walk.”
            “Korin, how're we doing on supplies?” I ask.
            “We'll make it to the next village.” He says. Its a vague answer but I believe him. Why would he lie to me? Besides, I've doubted Korin already for nothing. No need to doubt him again after he's proven himself so well.
            “Give them their food.”
^^^^^
            “I'm just saying that throughout history Batnekor has proven itself to be the weaker nation.”
            “What're ye thinkin'? My country is very strong.”
            “History always repeats itself.”
            “Then what ye do be doin' running to such a weak nation for help?”
            “Because its our only option. Believe me, we wouldn't be going to such a place of unwashed, uneducated people if we didn't have to.”
            “Is that what you be thinkin' of me? I'll have you know that...”
We have been on road for three days and Danielle and Annie have been fighting about nonsense nearly the entire time. I almost suspect them of fighting in their dreams. They seem to dislike each other so much that they can't even just walk along in silence. Nope, the rest of us have to hear them bicker. On the other hand, Isaias and I have been getting along famously. We are walking side by side, in the lead, not saying anything at them moment. Just listening the silly little back and forth of our sisters immediately behind us while Korin takes up the rear. I lean on the sturdy staff that Isaias made for me on the very first night that we all camped together. I have been healing very, very slowly. Probably because I haven't exactly given my body any chance to rest except at night so I still need someone next to me to catch me when I collapse. Something that happens at least a few time a day. Isaias looks at me.
            “Nathaniel, we need to talk.”
            “About the way our sisters need gags?”
            “No, I be afraid that it's something a wee bit more serious.”
            “Our three days that Scelerisal supposedly gave us has been up. I know. I've been thinking about it too.”
            “Yeah, I've thought about it. But that ain't the serious thing I was talkin' about.”
            I'm confused. What is the serious something? Now that I really look at him he seems rather nervous. “What?” I sound more wary than even I thought I would.
            Isaias swallows and says, “Why be you'n'Korin'n'Danielle all still playin' this game? It ain't be foolin' nobody.”
            “What game?”
            “What game? He asks me as if it weren't obvious to even us, simple foreigners.” Isaias speaks as if to himself and then turns to look at me. His green eyes seem to look not just into my soul, but beyond it, into my missing memories, into all the truth that I have forgotten. “Nathaniel. I don't even know if I'm calling ye be yer rightful name.”
            “Isaias. I promise you that it is the only name I have only been called. That I remember.” I smile a little to myself. He doesn't know about my missing memory.
            “I don't know if I can trust ye. Nat, I just don't know.” 
            He has certainly managed to confuse me if nothing else. “Isaias, what do you mean?”
            “If ye ain't gonna tell me, I ain't gonna force it from ye.”
            “Friend, please.” This time, it is me who looks at him and I try to make my stare as deeply penetrating as his, trying to see in his face what he won't tell me.

Comments

Hey Keri! I hope that this

Hey Keri! I hope that this story still has the will to live! I just read all the way through it ad I really enjoyed it! Keepo posting more please!

Heather | Sat, 03/20/2010

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
And now our hearts will beat in time/You say I am yours and you are mine...
Michelle Tumes, "There Goes My Love"

Return of the King

Yes! COD is back! Awesome.

P.S. I love Isaias' slang.

I am Nate-Dude | Tue, 08/31/2010

Nate-Dude