Author: SamDavenport PM
A start to a fantasy novel I've had in my head for a while. Set on an imaginary continent and is going to be about the journey of Gash, a farmer from the farming districts of Langdale. Basically it's not even into the main story yet. Would be good if you could give me hints as I'm going : Cheers.Rated: Fiction T - English - Fantasy/Adventure - Words: 1,475 - Published: 06-12-12 - id: 3031439
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It was dawn. The sun, peering curiously over Buck Hill to the east, cast enough rays of morning sunlight only to reflect off sleeping farmer's windows and illuminate the heavy cover of dew smothering the grass. A gentle morning breeze danced through the village giving movement to the sandy brown stems of wheat. Cows stood in a motionless slumber. That morning, a lone man strolled leisurely, but purposely, through the town of Langdale. His brown leather boots, incrusted with stale dirt, left fresh imprints in the saturated field. He whistled to himself a "good-morning" tune, rewarding him an irritated grunt from the inside of a small, yet fashionable cottage to his right. The man smiled gleefully. On the far side of the village, a rooster crowed, breaking the seemingly inpenetrable silence. The walking man simultaneously picked up his pace to a sort of stride and took a long, deep breath of crisp morning air.
By the time the man had reached his destination, half a dozen other men had ventured to their fields and began to prepare for a tough, merciless day of farming. The man's destination was in fact a farm. Rows upon rows of corn, potatoes, wheat and cabbage surrounded by a half-destroyed wooden fence. The fence made way for an archway featuring a plank of wood nailed precariously across the top, just above head's height. The plank had the words "Gashius Syndale's" etched deep into the wood. The man grinned seeing his own name so delicately carved, and surveyed his crops.
"Another day", Gashius said cheerily. Far more cheerily than most folks would consider suitable for a man anticipating a day of such back-breaking labour. But, he realised excitedly, today was not just another day. It was the first day of harvest. Arguably the most important day of the year for men in his line of work.
There aren't exactly many lines of work in Langdale, he added mentally.
Gashius dug his toes deep into the rich soil, and almost giggled as a worm slithered beneath his toes. Ah yes. This is the life, he thought.
A mile west of Langdale's borders, another two farmers dilly-dallied their ways towards the town. Together they skipped the stream passing between the two farming districts, Langdale and Farneil. The two men walked with a confident swagger towards the border. The man on the left was Lorryn. Lorryn had his messy, blonde mop of hair tied back in a ponytail tied with a small piece of string. He wore a studded leather chest-plate, trimmed silver with a sheath hanging off the right. The sheath held a 12 inch dagger with a shining iron hilt which stuck out the top and caught the reflection of the sun, causing anyone to cross their paths to be instantly aware of it's presence. Lorryn stared forward intently with determined eyes and fondled the hilt of his knife as he walked on.
The man on the right was Spark. His black hair had been shaven off and had recently formed a stubble on his head. He wore the same chest-plate as Lorryn, but carried no weapons. Spark tripped over an exposed root, stumbled, tripped again and sprawled face first on the ground.
Lorryn laughed, but did not slow his pace.
"Sure, laugh away" snapped Spark as he stood up and brushed himself off. Jogging back to Lorryn's side, Spark gave Lorryn a playful slap over the head and joined in with his friend's laughter.
Before the two had chance to engage in a 'playful battle', they reached the barrier. A humongous thick wooden wall loomed over them. With the sun on the other side of the construction, it cast a vast shadow encasing Spark and Lorryn in darkness.
They weren't phased.
Lorryn spun to the right and began scaling the circumference of the border. Spark, noticing his friend's dissapearance, hurridly followed. The two stopped as they reached a large iron gate in the wall. Lorryn unsheathed his dagger and used the hilt to bang loudly against the door.
"Who wishes to enter?" came a croaky shout from over the gate. The question sounded both rehearsed and boringly over-asked.
Spark shouted back, "it's just me and Lorryn, Garman.
There came a non-committal grunt, and a series of screeching as Garman pulled back bolts and chains. The gate swung open slowly, revealing a heaving overweight doorman in greasy tan overalls. Garman had a large matted ginger beard which hung down to his chest, but lacked any actual hair on his head. His pudgy, pink face smiled as he bowed sarcastically to let the two men pass. A rip in his overalls revealed an unwelcome blob of fat which jiggled humorously.
Spark chuckled, but received a sharp punch to the arm from Lorryn. "Good Morning, Garman. I haven't seen you on guard for weeks", Lorryn said while politely patting the man on his shoulder.
Garman grunted in approval, then after a moments silence he added, "Sick." He shut the door behind the boys and faced away from Lorryn, as if that answer was sufficient to an end of conversation.
"You shouldn't make fun of Garman!" Lorryn scowled Spark as they wandered into the now bustling village of Langdale.
"Oh come off it, Lorryn! It was funny!" Spark laughed.
The main road in Langdale passed directly through the centre of the town. Most merchants, butchers and fishers set their stalls along the side of the dusty street and shouted out deals at the farmers and travellers as they entered through the gate. Lorryn watched as a merchant received a swift punch in the nose from an irritated traveller who had obviously had sufferered enough harassment.
Serves him right, thought Lorryn, a smile played on his lips.
The main street split off into three smaller roads, one lead off to the farmlands in the north-eastern side of the village, one to the townhall and council centre, and the other towards the Eastern Gate. Spark and Lorryn took the first left towards the farms. Together they walked about half a mile down 'farm street', as the locals tended to call it, greeting various friends as they went with "Howdy's", "Good Day's" and "How do you do's?" By the time they reached the end of farm street, the two boys were in a very pleasant mood.
"Oi! You two!" came a shout from Gashius Syndale's land. Spark ran under an arch into the farm and Lorryn heard a grunt of breathlessness as the two boys bumped chests behind a row of wheat.
"Lorryn, get your Farneil behind in here and get to work!"
Lorryn grinned and stepped into the field and prepared himself for a long day.
The solid forest wall of poisonous vines, penetrating branches and smothering leaves quivered. A snapping of twigs echoed through the trees. Dry leaves. More crushing. A solitary figure sprinted into the open space and skidded to a halt, dust and escaping bugs colliding in a cloud of confusion. The figure, a woman, a woman with blonde, luscious flowing hair lying dully against her shoulders and back, stared into the seemingly empty break of trees with startling green eyes. She scanned her surroundings with an unreal concentration. Tracks lead off into a pass between the evergreens. Deer tracks. The women jumped back to life, and flew into the pass, her ethereal hair whipping behind her like a desperate eagle chasing it's prey, revealing dagger-like pointed ears, so pale, they contrasted with her olive complexion.
She ran a good three hundred steps, through the eery pathway. She could smell her target. Without warning, a doe exploded through a wall of still bushes. It fell on its side and rolled over twice, legs snapping in the process like the twigs the huntress had so carelessly crunched seconds ago. It cried out a depressing tone of helplessness and resignation, but was silenced as an arrow buried itself in the doe's side.
The doe went limp.
Appearing by the doe, the huntress snatched up the doe into her arms with unnatural strength, and whispered a prayer in its ear. She then slung the body over her shoulders and used a small segment of rope to tie the doe's legs together. Letting the doe go, it hung on her neck like a necklace. The three hundred pound catch having as much affect on her as a falling snowflake. The Sprite Huntress smiled to herself at the thought, and jogged off at a leisurely pace into the distance, leaving nothing behind but the musty scent of Flickerdell forest, and a slowly forming mist, rising off the ground in tendrils, reaching desperately for the tree tops.