Another 200 word story for you today, this one set in the world of A Blessed Lineage, a story yet to find a publisher. In many ways, this story is a follow-up. Who will Cerugon be to the physician Helokar and his apprentice, the mageborn Acar? I don't know, yet.
But if I figure it out, you'll be the first to know.
An Ill Wind From Rahmares
By Mark L.S. Stone
“An ill wind blows from Rahmares,” the bird said. “Dark magic.”
Cerugon did his best to ignore it. He had fields to plow.
Something scratched at the window in the night. Cerugon rose from his bed and opened the window so that the noise wouldn’t wake his wife.
“They are killing men in Rahmares,” the small grey fox said.
“What do you care?” Cerugon replied in a harsh whisper.
“You’re Cerugon, aren’t you?”
“I’m not that man anymore.”
The black-helmeted soldiers from the capital claimed men and boys as a tribute for the new queen in Rahmares. They said it was a work levy, but Cerugon knew otherwise. Cerugon made his house invisible and kept his sons hidden inside. His magic ached like a muscle that had been cramped for so long that it became numb – a good hurt.
The next day, Cerugon dug in the herb garden until he found the crystal sphere he had buried there years ago. The orb hummed joyfully in his hand.
“Thanks for watching this for me,” Cerugon said.
“You’re welcome,” replied the oak tree that stood at the edge of the garden.
Cerugon shouldered his pack and started down the road to Rahmares.