Change Storms are storms of raw magic and occur frequently in the Nef lands.
Clinging green fog rolled through the city streets. Low-lying, it blended with the dirt and grime of the road. A tall, well-dressed man pulled a foot back, gasped, and flung his arm across the door barring another from stepping out. They backed a pace as the fog licked over the lintel careful not to let it touch them.
“How far does it go,” asked the second.
The first man carefully peered around the edge of the door squinting left then right. “I can’t tell. It’s moving in from the west.” Distant thunder rumbled. “Change storm. A big one, look. It’s moving in fast.” He blinked his eyes and caught back long white hair the wind was tying in knots.
To the west, lightning ripped across the sky illuminating a massive storm front. Within it, flashes like distant echoes sent jagged bolts of color crashing into the ground filling the night with an acrid smell.
A steady rumble vibrated up through their feet. “Get everybody to the safe room. We don’t have much time before it hits,” said the first. A wailing siren split the night. Lights flickered to life in the surrounding homes as panicked people found what shelter they could.
The tavern was as its name, the front covered in barbed climbing roses. White washed walls peeked through thick canes green with new growth and pink buds. A wooden porch wrapped around the building. Tall open windows leaked smoke and voices. The Thorny Rose, known for its food, company, and music, gathered a varied and frequent crowd. The beer was strong, the wine sweet, and the owner no nonsense. Person and parcel were safe in his rooms at night. Several men who had seen the rough end of Beyl stood guard in the house and yard ready to make a quick end of trouble. If Ben remembered right, the owners first wife had been named Rose, also thorny, to hear Mari talk about her.
Inside the Rose, tables and chairs covered the floor. People crowded at the bar and filled the booths lining the walls. A raised stage on the other side of the tavern stood empty. They found a place to sit along a wall. Ben settled back in his chair and nodded to the townsfolk he recognized. A good half of the patrons were local, the rest where travelers, and still others here for Revel.
Ben raised a hand at a girl in a green apron. “Hey, Mari. Busy crowd tonight.” A loud group of men dressed in strange finery sat at a trestle table. From the look and sound of it, they had been drinking for quite a while. He watched as one of the men grabbed a passing serving girl. She wiggled away, a look of annoyance on her face.
Mari frowned, “Just because it’s Revel doesn’t give anyone reason to be rude and that lot thinks they can do anything. Grabbing everybody and such". She rubbed a bruise on her arm.
“Who are they?” Ben asked.
She shook her head, “Fancy merchants from Basillica City in Pria. They paid the old man plenty for most of the rooms upstairs so the house guard gives them more liberty. I’ll see what we have in the kitchen for you.”
One man drank alone next to a low fire close to the merchants, the remains of his supper still on the table. He was dressed in worn black leather loosely covered by a dark, knee length coat. His face was weathered and lean, full of sharp angles. A thong tied his black hair into a tail low on his neck. Something in his posture made Ben think he was very aware of the room and everyone in it; close attention was paid to anyone approaching the group of finely dressed drunkards.
The man leaned back and stretched out his legs shifting his coat to revel a long sword in a scuffed up scabbard. Hanging from his earlobe, a dark jewel glinted.
Ben’s attention focused on the man. “Look at that man by the fire. No, don’t turn around. That’s too obvious.” Ren and the girls shuffled in their seats and rearranged themselves until they had a better view of the room.
“What, Ben? He’s a soldier,” said Reia.
“Look at his ear, at the earring. I think he’s a Red Brother,” Ben whispered.
“I don’t think you have to whisper. He probably can’t hear you over all this noise,” Rendy said.
“They’re supposed to have really good hearing, Ren,” Claire said. “He might be able too. I’ve never seen a Red Brother before.” A pause, “Do you think he’s mad?”
“What does it matter?” said Ben. “They’re all animals. Rabid ones at that. You never know when the blood rage will hit them. I don’t see how anyone uses them for troops and guards. How do you trust your back to someone that might turn on you?” He said disgusted.
The others nodded in agreement.
The group stared at the man. He turned and frowned at them.
Ben gasped and hunched down at the table. The others closed in around him. “He saw us. Now what do we do?”
“Maybe we should leave,” Claire said.
“But we haven’t eaten.”
Everyone turned and stared at Rendy. “Never mind.”
B*&9(&97n$% !!! (shakes fist in bogwitch64 's direction) Now I can't put it down!
Breathe, breathe, I'll give myself permission to read tonight and hit the grind stone again tomorrow. I wish I could take the rest of the week off of work (I'm on vacation) to write. I really like being able to write and not feel guilty about it as opposed to writing and pretending to work at, well, work.
Okay, off to read some more.
Keep those fingers moving.
Edit, edit, edit,
An hour is a long time for my little ADD mind to focus. It is definitely nap time, now. I've been up since the butt-crack of dawn (see previous post).
My thought is to write for an hour with no distraction from the shiny internetz, then take about a 15 minute break doing something else. Maybe the internetz or something around the house, then write for an hour, etc . . .
It's just me and the baby-boy today (He is getting over a cold). John and Kate are hunting. Well, he is hunting; she is watching to decide if she wants to start hunting. The only hunting I want to do is with my camera. He promised to take me out another time and set me up in a location with my camera. I really want a zoom lens for that occasion, but one is not going to magically fall out of the sky and I can't afford one. Maybe my aunt has one.
I think I'm loosing focus already. It's nap time. I've been up since 4:30am. After that I'll focus.
Really. I will. Promise. . . I really need some new icons . . .
We spent Sunday at the archery range. Hubby was sighting in his bow for hunting and I was teaching Matthew (age 7) to shoot. Playing about with Matthew's bow really made me want to start shooting again. I was hitting the bulls eye about half of my shots. Pretty good for not shooting since high school which was much longer ago than I like to remember. ;)
Back on more meds. The fungal infection in my sinuses is still hanging on. The magic mushrooms in my nose are still playing merry havoc with my head.
I have updated the slider bar with my new projected word count. I'm not feeling near as accomplished as when the projected word count was 20,000. But, hey. I guess 5,000 words a week isn't too bad.
I'm up to 7,733 words. Wow, that is a very interesting number.
I finally finished the scene I wanted to be done with on Wednesday, so I guess I can post it next Wednesday. Yay!
This story was supposed to be short, only 20,000 words. I wanted it easy to go over and learn from. I'm up to almost half that number and I'm not even done with the first part of Act I. LOL, I guess the story had other ideas of what length it needed to be. What happened to my short simple story of: Boy gets cursed. Boy runs for life. Boy validates himself. NOOOO, it's got to be more than that ;)
So my new estimation on word count is probably going to be 60,000, but I'm going to call it 50,000.
Here is my nice almost done word count meter. The next time I post, it won't look so full.
Life is good.