Faith Victorious: Chapters Six and Seven

Fiction By Kyleigh // 2/13/2010

Normal
0

false
false
false

MicrosoftInternetExplorer4

st1\:*{behavior:url(#ieooui) }

/* Style Definitions */
table.MsoNormalTable
{mso-style-name:"Table Normal";
mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0;
mso-tstyle-colband-size:0;
mso-style-noshow:yes;
mso-style-parent:"";
mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt;
mso-para-margin:0in;
mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt;
mso-pagination:widow-orphan;
font-size:10.0pt;
font-family:"Times New Roman";
mso-ansi-language:#0400;
mso-fareast-language:#0400;
mso-bidi-language:#0400;}

Chapter Six: Palet

            As Archie and Keegan descended the ladder to the hold, they heard the worried chatter of the people. Kianna, Liam, and Jeffrey sat huddled near the ladder. Liam jumped up as Archie came down, clambering up onto his friend. Jeffrey stood up next to them, looking up at Archie.

            “Is it gone?”

            “What gone?” Liam asked.

            Archie shook his head.

            “What do we do?”

            “We pray.”

            “How will that help?”

            “When we pray, we’re letting the Creator know our need and our dependence on Him. Daron hates it when we pray.”
            “So because Daron hates it when we pray… then he’ll make the sea monster go away.”

            “And even if that doesn’t work, the Creator will protect us.”

            “But what if the Creator thinks it’s better for us to go home to Him?”    

            “Then maybe I won’t beat to you be with Him after all.”

            They grew quiet as Keegan raised his voice.

            “Let us ask the Lord’s protection against the sea monster,” he said. Heads bowed simultaneously, and any whispers were silenced. “O Creator, you say in your Law that you are our ‘palet,’ or ‘deliverer,’ in the ancient tongue. We pray now that you would deliver us from this sea monster, and spare us to do Your work. Comfort us and give us peace during this time, and help us not to trust what we think best, but that we would trust that your plan for us is far better than what we can imagine. Help us to have blind confidence in You, our God Palet. Amen.”

            The noise of chatter rose once more. Kianna plugged her ears, but Liam felt like he had to be heard above the hubbub. “Palet, palet,” he shouted.

            “Shhh, Liam.” Archie put a finger to his lips, but it had the opposite effect on the little boy.

            “Palet!” He yelled at the top of his lungs.          

            Keegan took Liam from Archie’s arms. “Do you know what Palet means, Liam?”

            “No,” Liam said, somewhat more quietly.

            “It means deliverer.”

            “De…?”

            “A deliverer is someone who saves someone.”

            Liam thought for a minute. “Daddy save us.” He said.

            “Aye, that’s right.”

            “He de…?”

            “Deliverer.”

            “Deli…”

            “De-li-ver-er.”

            “Deliver…er.” Liam said.

            “Aye.”

            “Daddy die.” The boy said sadly.

            “But he’s not dead forever,” Keegan reminded.

            “Alive soon?”

            “I don’t know. When the Creator comes back, we will go to Him, and we will be alive forever with new life.”

            Liam furrowed his brow. Maybe that’s too much for him, Keegan thought.

            “Life… with the Creator. Forever.” He said slowly.

            “Aye, that’s right.”

            Archie tapped Keegan on the shoulder.

            “Do you want me to go check up on deck?” He asked.

            “Aye. Be careful.”

            Archie nodded.

            “Make sure Jeffrey stays down here.”

            “Aye. Jeffrey, stay here.”

            Jeffrey nodded. As Archie went up the ladder, Jeffrey stayed at the foot of it, looking up. He stayed there for ten minutes. Then he glanced around and began climbing up. He smiled as his head poked up above the deck and the sea breeze hit his face.

            “Mr. Archie!” He called, rolling onto the deck. Seeing his friend, he ran toward him. “Mr. Archie!”

            “Jeffrey, I told you to stay below.”

            “I thought the sea monster got you!”

            “Then you tell Captain Keegan that and let him take care of it. Go back down.”

            Jeffrey lowered his head and began walking back toward the hatch. Then he turned back. “Where’s the sea monster?”

            “I don’t know, I haven’t seen him.”

            “Can I look?”

            “Later, go below.”

            On his way to the hatch, Jeffrey purposefully walked near the railing of the ship, peering over the edge.

            “Jeffrey, I told you to go below.”

            “I’m going!”

            “You’re being disobedient.”

            Suddenly Jeffrey stopped and peered over the edge of the rail.

            “Mr. Archie, there’s something down there.” He went up on the balls of his feet to get a closer look. Archie lunged at him, but he was a split second too late, as Jeffrey’s feet left the deck of the ship, and the weight of his head pulled him down. Archie panicked, and then began yelling.

            “Captain Keegan, Captain Keegan, quick!” He searched frantically for a rope, finally finding an extra one. His hands fumbled to untie the knot. Keegan came on deck.

            “What happened?”
            “Jeffrey, water, quick!” He tied the rope around his waist, and then secured it to the rail of the ship. Before Keegan could stop him, Archie jumped overboard.

            “I can’t find him!” He called up desperately. “Do you see him?”

            “There’s something over there, a few feet to your left.”

            Archie swam there, and dove under the surface of the water. It was Jeffrey. Just as he grabbed the boy, he saw something else with him underwater – the sea monster. Resurfacing, Archie motioned for Keegan to pull them up. “Hurry,” He shouted. “The sea monster… there.”

            Jeffrey coughed. “Palet,” He said weakly.

            “Aye, Palet.” It was a single word, but it was a prayer. Deliver us. Archie felt the water churning beneath him as the monster swam, trying to get close enough to get his jaws around his pray.

            “Creator, protect us!” Archie screamed as he felt something brush against his foot. They were out of the water now. He used his feet to help Keegan bring them up to the ship.

            Keegan now saw the sea monster clearly. “Servant of Daron, this ship is no longer a tool of your masters! It is a tool of the Creator!” He shouted. “Be gone from here! This ship is full of the redeemed, who you cannot touch if the Creator does not let you!”

            The Sea Monster raised its head from the water and roared once more, but then dove down. They saw no more of him.

            Safely on the deck of the ship, Archie lay Jeffrey down. “Come on, lad, breathe. You’re alright now.”

            Jeffrey coughed again, and opened his eyes. “Our God, Palet.” He said.

            “Aye, that he is. Now get below. We’ll talk more about this later.”

            Jeffrey nodded, and then went straight to the hatch. As he descended the ladder, Keegan turned to Archie.

            “I thought I told you not to let him up here.”

            “I told him that he was not to come up, he disobeyed in coming up, and then did not go straight below when I told him to.”

            “Talk to him about it, but I think he has had punishment enough for his disobedience.”

            “Aye.”

            “It was truly the grace of the Creator alone that saved both of you.”

            “Aye.”

             “Let’s join everyone else down below. In another hour we can all come up.”

            Silently they climbed down the ladder. Jeffrey and Kianna were sitting next to each other. Kianna had found a blanket and wrapped Jeffrey in it. Now he sat drying off, his head resting on her shoulder. They talked quietly together. Every now and again one would catch the word ‘palet’ in their conversation, often preceded by ‘the monster.’ Liam, meanwhile, was completely oblivious to all that had passed. He sat on one of the men’s shoulders, and was laughing merrily as the men told jokes or teased him.

 

            As they one by one came back on deck later in the day, Jeffrey rode piggyback on Archie. Kianna came behind them, helping Liam up the ladder.

            “Will you teach us now, Mr. Archie?”

            “Aye, come with me to Captain Keegan’s cabin. You too, Kianna and Liam.”

            Soon the four of them were huddled over a map in the cabin.
            “This is Ladylan, where we started.”
            “Where’s Rakeyna?” Kianna asked.

            “Rakeyna is there. And there are the forests, just outside of Rakeyna’s walls.”

            “And there’s the sea we’re in now, right?”

            “Right, Kianna. Jeffrey, can you find the islands?”

            “Are these them?”

            “Aye! You two are wonderful with maps! I’ll have to call you in here sometime when Captain Keegan and I are looking over them – maybe you can help.”

            Kianna giggled knowingly, and Archie winked at her.

            “I’m not sure how much we’ll help you as you’ll help us,” she said.

            “What else would you like me to teach you?” Archie asked. “To read? Write? Knots? Stars?”

            “Kianna and I both read and write, and Liam’s too young.” Jeffrey said. “I want to learn how to climb the ropes!”
            “They’re called rigging, and we’ll do that later today. But you have to be careful so you don’t end up in the water again.”

            Archie looked up as Keegan entered.

            “What is this silly lad Archie teaching you all today?” He asked.

            “He showed us where the islands are,” Jeffrey said.

            “Rigging!” Liam said, grinning. “Read, write!”

            “Is that what you’re going to learn, Liam?”

            Liam nodded. “Stars, too.”

            “Well, it sounds like you have a lot to learn! Better get started, eh?”

            “Aye!” Jeffrey said enthusiastically.

            “And you, Kianna, what are you going to learn?”

            Kianna thought for a minute. “I want to cook well, like Mrs. Elena.”

            “Cook well? Then Archie sure can’t teach you that!”

            Everyone laughed.

            “Well, Kianna, I think that Mrs. Elena is getting a meal ready right now. Why don’t you run along and help her in the kitchens?”

            Kianna glowed, and then ran out of the cabin.

            “Jeffrey, come here.” Keegan said seriously.

            “Yes, Captain?”

            “What you did earlier was not right.”
            “I know.”

            “When Mr. Archie or I tell you something, you must obey. We give you rules to protect you. When you step outside of those rules, you can get hurt.”

            “Like falling over the rail.”

            “Aye.”

            “I won’t disobey again, Mr. Keegan.”

            “Well, I’m sure you will, lad, but with the Creator’s help we can try. Mr. Archie and I will help you.”

            “Thank you.”

            “We’re not going to punish you for your disobedience this time, because the Creator did that in His own way. But in the future there will be consequences.”

            “Aye.”

            “Alright, you can go. I think Mr. Archie is going to teach you how to climb the rigging now. Liam, you stay here with me.”

            “Wif Mr. Keegan!” Liam said happily, climbing onto the Captain’s lap.

           

           

            The rest of the journey passed without incident. Every day on watch, Jeffrey would fall asleep halfway into their shift, and just before it ended Archie would wake him up. Then they would go and have lessons until breakfast. The pre-breakfast lessons were just Jeffrey, Keegan, and Archie. They would practice Jeffrey’s writing and reading, help him with knots, and help him navigate. Meanwhile, Kianna was helping the women in the kitchens. She flourished in the time that she spent with them. Kianna missed her mother more than she let on, and sometimes at night if she could not sleep her mind would wander to her mother and then the tears would come. But during the day, she put that aside and joyfully served others. Liam would often waddle around behind her, declaring to everyone what was for dinner – and who it was that was serving them.     

            “Kia’a, Kia’a,” He would say, marching in Kianna’s wake until someone took him onto their lap. Then he would look up at whoever it was, smile contentedly and say. “Kia’a make good food.”

            After the meal, Kianna, Liam, Jeffrey, Archie, and Keegan would retreat into the Captain’s quarters and have more lessons – this time mathematics, and then they would read from the Law or Word. Kianna would copy parts with Keegan and Archie as Jeffrey read. In the afternoons after lunch, the children were free to do whatever they wished. Jeffrey often stayed in the Captain’s cabin, listening to Archie and Keegan talk, looking out the window, or pouring over maps. Kianna would find one of the women, usually Elena, and sit and talk with her near the rail of the ship. Liam would wander around, finding someone to entertain him – though usually he ended up entertaining whoever it was that he went to for entertainment. The little two year old could now walk quite skillfully on the boat, but sometimes he lost his balance and tumbled in all sorts of directions. As he tried to get back to his feet, he would fall again, and lie on the deck and laugh for a little while before trying again. When he talked, his words often came out in the wrong order, and sometimes he would even mix up the beginnings and endings of words – like when he would talk about the ‘mea sonster.’ When corrected, he would insist that he had said it right the first time, then sigh in frustration, and change the subject.

            When it grew dark, many of the travelers would sit or lie on the deck of the ship and look up at the stars. Kianna would lie with Liam on top of her, and often he would fall asleep. Jeffrey would put his head on Archie’s stomach and lie perpendicular to him as Archie pointed out different constellations. Keegan always sat up, his head tipped back. He never spoke while they stargazed, only stared off into space. Liam tried to talk to him once, but Archie said not to interrupt him because he was praying.

           

            The days on the Jubilee passed quickly. It seemed like much less than a week before one of the men spotted the islands on his watch. Then the ship came alive very quickly as Keegan gave orders to prepare the ship to land. But in the midst of this flurry, Keegan still remembered to call everyone together to pray. It was not a long time of prayer, but in it Keegan thanked the Creator for His protection and guidance, and once more thanked Him for being our palet, our deliverer. Jeffrey smiled a small, knowing smile when Keegan prayed these words – for truly he understood that name of God now, “Our God, Palet.”

 

Chapter Seven: The Man With A Sword

            The Jubilee was a flurry of activity as it pulled into the busy island port on Ocadem. Women packed up food and belongings, while the men prepared the ship for landing. Kianna, Jeffrey, and Liam stood near the rail of the ship and watched as the land drew closer. Kianna had her arm around Jeffrey’s shoulder, and Liam clung to his big sister’s waist. They observed the natives carrying boxes, crates, livestock, and all sorts of other goods to and from ships. Liam pointed excitedly at an animal.

            “Cow, cow!” He said.

            “Yes, there’s a cow,” Kianna picked Liam up and held him on her hip. “And what’s that animal there?”

            “Horse!”

            “Is it from Byshan?” Jeffrey asked. In his last lesson with Archie, Jeffrey had been learning about Byshan, and the main thing he remembered was how strong and beautiful their horses were.

            “I don’t know. It could be from anywhere. It looks like lots of ships come in here.”

            “That’s right, lots of ships do come in here, from all over Edaled. These islands are a central port and a good resting place for travelers,” Keegan said from behind them.

            “How many islands are there, Mr. Keegan?” Kianna wondered.

            “Somewhere around thirty. Most of them are rather small, though, like this one. However, this island does have the biggest port.”

            “What’s the name of this island?” Jeffrey asked, his eyes following a man carrying a large sword on his back.

            “All of the islands are the Minarean Islands, not to be confused with the ones down by Olandern, which are actually part of Olandern. These islands don’t belong to a certain kingdom. This island is called Ocadem, I believe.”

            Now Liam, too, saw the man with the sword. “Sword!” He said excitedly.

            “Where?” Kianna asked.

            “Over there.” Jeffrey pointed to the man.

            “That’s odd… there’s no one else around with any weapons. Why’s he got one?”

            “I don’t know,” Keegan moved to the edge of the ship to try to get a closer look. “He may be traveling through the islands on his way somewhere else.”

            “He bad?” Liam wanted to know.

            “Maybe, maybe not. We won’t stick our noses into his business, but if he wishes something with us, we will be willing to help him.”

            “He’s coming this way now, and watching our ship.” Kianna noticed.

            “Don’t worry about him, Kianna. If he’s dangerous, there’s a lot more of us than there are of him.”
            “Yes, Mr. Keegan.”

            “We’re ready, Captain,” Archie suddenly came up to them and said.

            “Alright, are you ready to go ashore?”

            “Aye!” Jeffrey shouted.

            Kianna looked unsure.

            Jeffrey guessed why. “Mr. Keegan said don’t worry about the man, Kianna, so stop it!”

            “What man?” Archie asked.

            “Down there.” Kianna showed Archie where the man was. Now he stood with his back to the ship.

            “No need to worry about him,” Archie reassured as he watched the man.

            Kianna nodded, but still walked slowly, her eye on the man the whole time.

            There had been space at the port for The Jubilee to anchor right up against the wharf. Once the men let the gangplank down, the ship’s passengers left the ship. The plan was that they would stay on Ocadem for a week, deciding and praying about what to do next. Archie and Keegan were guessing that the group would not stay all together, but rather that some would stay on Ocadem while others spread out to other islands. Each group would have a copy of the Creator’s Law and Adan’s Words with them, so that they could continue the work that they had begun.

            “Come back to The Jubilee at night,” Keegan said as they reached land. 

            As everyone separated, Kianna looked around for the man with the sword. He was in neither of the places that she had seen him before. Archie bent down to whisper in her ear.   

            “Forget about the man with the sword, Kianna. He doesn’t concern us.”

            “How do you know?”

            “I don’t, but even if he did, we would have no reason to fear.”

            “Why?”
            “Remember what name of the Creator we talked about on the ship?”

            “Palet.”

            “Aye. What’s it mean?”

            “Deliverer.” Kianna sighed.

            “So don’t worry, alright?”

            “No, Mr. Archie.”

            They moved on to explore the island. That first day, Keegan, Archie, and the children walked all around Ocadem. It was not a large island, but even so, Liam begged to be carried most of the way. Kianna enjoyed finding shells on the areas of the coastline that were beach, and Jeffrey found many little crabs. When he found one, Jeffrey would put the crab on his shoulder, adding to his collection. He loved the feeling of the crabs running all over his back and up his arms. From time to time, Liam decided that he was “no tired ‘nymore,” and so he would walk with his feet in the water, holding Kianna’s hand.  If he saw a crab, he would point to it and looking up at Kianna, say,

            “Jeff’y, him got lotsa crabs!” Then, letting go of her hand, he would run his hands near his shoulders, adding “An’ all of ‘em up here.” Kianna would look down into his wide eyes, trying not to laugh at how serious he was.

            “Do you want a crab?” Archie asked.

            “No, me ‘no like ‘em crabs, tickle me much!”

            “Like this?” Kianna wondered, bending down and tickling Liam.

            “Stop it!” He squealed, wriggling out of her arms. He landed with a thump in the water. “Wet!” Liam sighed, standing up and shaking like a dog.

             “I can get you even wetter,” Jeffrey said, running up and splashing him.

            Liam splashed back, and soon Kianna joined in the fun. As they splashed, ran, and laughed, Archie and Keegan walked just out of the water, talking.

            “I’m glad to see that they’re happy,” Archie commented.

            “Aye.” Keegan surveyed the land. “This is a peaceful place.”

            “But how long will it stay like that?”

            Keegan shook his head. “There’s no way to tell. But at least we can get some work done here.” He breathed the sea air. “And with so many islands, it will take us a while to get kicked out completely.”

            “Aye. We have no excuse to stop telling people about the Creator until we have been banished from every kingdom, and even then we cannot keep silent about His love.”

            “No. And it He is so great that it is no sacrifice to give your life for Him.”

            Jeffrey had come up behind them while they were talking, and now he spoke. “Give your life for who?”

            “For the Creator,” Archie said. He stared far out to sea, thinking. If the time came, would he have the courage to lay down his life as Adan did?

            “Why would we have to do that?”

            “There are many people in Edaled who do not love the Creator.”

            “Do they serve Daron?”

            “Yes, Jeffrey. And because Daron hates the Creator, then those who serve Daron hate those who serve the Creator.”

            “And they want to kill us?”

            “Aye.”

            “But why isn’t it any sacrifice to give your life for the Creator?”

            “Think about everything that He’s done for you.”

            “He gave me life. And He sent Adan to die so that I wouldn’t have to.” Jeffrey paused. “So because Adan died for me, it’s not too much for God to ask that I die for Him?”

            “Something like that. When we follow the Creator, we give Him our all,” Keegan said. “So if He asks for it, it is right that we give it to Him.”

            Jeffrey took a crab off his shoulder and held it in his hands. “But I’m scared to die.” He whispered.

            “Are you scared that the crab will hurt you?”

            “No.”

            “Why not?”

            “Because I know that it’s not strong enough to.”

            “Exactly. It’s the same thing with Daron. He tricks us into thinking that he is strong enough to hurt us and that the Creator isn’t able to protect us, but that’s a lie. The Creator does not desire to hurt us, only to make us more like Adan. He will never ask us to go where He cannot protect us – which means He can ask us to go anywhere. The Creator is much stronger than Daron, and is much stronger than anything that men can do.”

            “But men can hurt me.”

            “Aye, they can hurt you, lad, but they can only hurt your body. They cannot hurt your soul.”
            “Daddy used to talk about that. He said that my body would fade away and my soul would last forever, even after I die, it would be with the Creator if I follow Him, or away from Him forever if I didn’t.”

            “That’s right. So we don’t need to fear those who will harm what is going to fade away anyway.”

            “I’m still scared, Mr. Keegan.”

            “Don’t worry about it too much now, Little Crab-Man. The Creator gives us the strength as we need it, not necessarily as we want it.”

            Jeffrey smiled. “Thanks, Mr. Keegan.” He said. Then he ran off to join his siblings in the water.

            Just as the sun was beginning to set, the group reached the main port of Ocadem. Liam rode on Archie’s shoulders as they entered, and Jeffrey still carried all of his crabs. All three of the children showed signs of their adventures in the water, whether it was wet spots or sand on their clothes, tangled hair, or bits of salt sticking to them. That night, as they ate dinner aboard the ship, Jeffrey wandered away from the joyous noises at the tables. He leaned against the rail of the ship, looking down at the now quiet town below them. As a sea breeze blew in, he closed his eyes, letting his thoughts consume him. He opened them again when he heard footsteps behind him.

            “What are you thinking about?”

            It was one of the men from the ship, Peter.

            “Dying.” Jeffrey replied.

            Peter leaned up against the rail next to Jeffrey. “Those are awfully deep thoughts for you.”

            Jeffrey turned his head and looked at Peter. “You think?”

            “Not many other six-year-olds I know think about death.”

            “How many other six-year-olds do you know?”

            Peter laughed. “Not many. I hope to know many more, though.”

            Jeffrey looked back at the island. “He’s there again.”

            “Who is?”

            “The man with the sword.”

            “Where is he?”

            “Down there, watching the ship. He’s kind of in the shadows, under that house with the thatched roof.”

            “I wonder who he is.”
            “I don’t know. Mr. Archie and Mr. Keegan said not to worry about him. But he’s still watching us.”

            “Still?”

            “He was here this morning when we got here.”

            “Peter!” Someone called from the table.

            “Aye?”

            “What is so intriguing over there?”

            “I’m just talking with Jeffrey. Understanding how deeply six-year-olds think.”

            Jeffrey smiled. “I’m going to go talk to Mr. Keegan,” He said.

            A few minutes later, Keegan and Archie got up from the table and walked to the rail of the ship with Jeffrey.

            “See, he’s right there.”

            They watched him quietly for a little while.

            “I think he may have some business with us,” Archie said at last.

            “Aye.” Keegan replied grimly.

            “What will you do?” Jeffrey looked up at Keegan, and then at Archie.

            Keegan fingered the dirk he kept hidden under his tunic. “I will go talk to him.”

            Lowering a small rope ladder that the men had made over the side of the ship, Keegan climbed down and jumped onto the ground. Jeffrey gripped the rail of the ship tightly as he watched Keegan approach the man with the sword. He wished that he were close enough to hear what they were saying. The whole time that he was down there, Keegan’s hand did not move from his dirk.

            “Who do you think he is?” Jeffrey asked Archie.

            “I don’t know; he could be anyone.”

            After a few minutes of watching the two men converse, Archie asked Peter to watch Jeffrey. “I’m going to go down and see what’s going on,” he explained. “Stay with Peter,” he commanded Jeffrey.

            Jeffrey nodded. He understood that Archie’s specific commands were because of the incident with the Sea Monster.

            Archie approached Keegan and the man with the sword quietly. Even up close, it was hard to see the man’s features in the fading light.

            “… we seek the safety of these islands,” Keegan was saying. “To continue the work that the Creator has given us.” Keegan turned slightly when he noticed Archie’s presence. “This is my first mate,” he told the man.

            Archie reached out his hand to shake the man with the sword’s, but the man did not return the gesture, only nodded.

            “I know.” He said. His voice was deep and almost gruff, but there was something in it that was soft and kind.

            “Who are you?” Archie asked.

            “As I was telling your Captain, I am one of the officials of the island. It is my duty to watch any strange ship that comes in, to make sure that it is not bringing harm to the Islands. Many times we have had evil come in from Minarea.”

            “We bring no evil,” Archie assured him.

            “So say many.”

            “Will you come aboard the ship, meet our people, and talk with us, before you decide?” said Keegan.

            “Aye.”

            “There is one condition, though.”

            The man grunted.

            “That you leave your sword behind.”

            The man hesitated.

            “We, too, have a right to protect our people from strangers,” Archie said.

            His gloved hands unbuckling the sword, the stranger removed it from his back.

            “Alright, but one of you must stay here to make sure no one steals it.”

            Archie nodded. “I will stay.”

            Keegan and the man walked toward the ship. Archie leaned up against the wall of the house and watched them.

            When the two men boarded the Jubilee, Jeffrey pointed to them. “Can I go talk to them, Mr. Peter?”

            “Aye.”

            Jeffrey ran to Keegan, clinging to his leg. He looked up at his Captain. “Who is he?” Jeffrey whispered.

            “An official on the islands.”

            “What does he want with us?”
            “He wants to protect the islands.”

            Jeffrey looked suspiciously at the man. “Where’s his sword?”

            “Mr. Archie is guarding it on shore.”

            “I still don’t know if I like him,” Jeffrey admitted.

            “Neither do I – which is why his sword is on shore.”

            By this time, many of the men had gathered around Keegan and the stranger. A few had introduced themselves. Still the man remained silent and reserved. He shook no ones hands, and seemed not to notice that the men wanted his name. Kianna pushed through the crowd with a bowl of steaming stew in her hands. A timid smile on her face, she held it up to the man.

            “Would you like something to eat?” She asked.

            Something in the man seemed to snap. “Did you make it?”

            Kianna shook her head. Her eyes darted back and forth from the ground to the man’s eyes. “I helped,” she said quietly.

            “Did you now?”

            “Aye.” She gave the man a small smile, and then bit her lip. Her bare toes curled and uncurled on the deck of the ship.

            “What’s your name?”

            Kianna glanced up at Keegan nervously. Keegan nodded encouraging. “Kianna.”

            “I’m Jonathan.” He sat down cross-legged on the deck of the ship, patting beside him. Kianna sat next to him. Jonathan took a spoonful of the stew and pushed it into his mouth.

            “Mmm. This is very good, Kianna.”

            “Thank you. Miss Elena made most of it. I only helped a little.”

            Jonathan pointed up at Keegan with his spoon. “Is that man your father?”

            “No, Mr. Jonathan. My daddy…” She paused. When she continued, her voice was barely audible. “He died.”
            “Died?” Jonathan asked. His eyebrows drew together. How can this sweet young girl have lost her father?

            “Aye.” Kianna looked down at her lap intently. “Daron’s servants killed him.”

            “Who’s Daron?”

            Kianna turned her gaze to Jonathan. She raised her eyebrows. “You don’t know who Daron is?”

            When Jonathan shook his head, Kianna chewed on her lip thoughtfully for a minute. “Daron is the reason people hate and hurt each other and kill each other. He twists the Creator’s Truth into lies and makes people believe them. He’s evil.”

            “I had never heard of Daron before. The Creator I have heard spoken of many times, but only by those who speak against him angrily.”

            “The people who speak against Him, especially angrily, are liars and servants of Daron. Don’t believe them.”

Comments

A new section!

Aw! So Palet defeated the big, nasty 'mea sonster,'  did he? That scene was really good.  Jeffery and Liam are so cute...absolutely adorable, really...

It's sad, though, that Jeffery has to contemplate death so soon. The repeated theme of 'they can only touch our bodies' is very effective in communicating the power of the Creator. 

You should really see about publishing this trilogy. They are unique fantasy stories with well-rounded characters.

Julie | Sat, 02/13/2010

Formerly Kestrel

Me love!

I think i've come a little late to understand all the aspects of this story, but WOW! I love the characters...they have such vibrant and innocent personalities! I imagined them as animals, kind of like in Redwall, but i'm pretty sure they're humans lol. I loved their understanding of their God, and their desire to have absolute faith in him. Well done!

Clare | Sat, 02/13/2010

Thank you!

I'm glad you both enjoyed it. :) The characters are always my favorite part of a story, especially younger children. Kianna, Jeffrey, and Liam are based off of the children of some dear friends of ours here, and we see them frequently, so they're a constant inspiration for these dear little ones. :) 

Kyleigh | Sun, 02/14/2010

Wow, Kyleigh, I wish I could

Wow, Kyleigh, I wish I could develop my characters like you do.
And the part where Archie was rescuing Jeffrey brought tears to my eyes (by the way, I love the name Archie). Well done. Keep writing!

Laura Elizabeth | Mon, 02/15/2010

*************************************************
The best stories are those that are focused, unassuming, and self-confident enough to trust the reader to figure things out. --

http://lauraeandrews.blogspot.com/2014/05/dont-tell-me-hes-smart.html

Yes, keep writing. It seems

Yes, keep writing.

It seems kind of funny to end a section right in the middle of a conversation... I'm hoping to find out more about this man Jonathan.

James | Tue, 02/16/2010

<><~~~~~~~~~~~~><>
"The idea that we should approach science without a philosophy is itself a philosophy... and a bad one, because it is self-refuting." -- Dr. Jason Lisle