|The Legend of the Nightrunner
Author: Andramion PM
Aerlynn Nightcarrier might look like a frail young maiden, but she's not just a woman in a man's world: she's the sole survivor of the Raid of Hillsbloom six years ago and she can take care of herself just fine. R&R, please?Rated: Fiction T - English - Fantasy/Adventure - Chapters: 15 - Words: 23,243 - Reviews: 1 - Favs: 2 - Follows: 3 - Updated: 08-08-12 - Published: 07-21-12 - id: 3043837
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Chapter 8: A Tale of the past
Soren was working on the fields outside the house when his mother called him in. He was a simple man. His days were always the same, but it didn't really bother him. Although he sometimes dreamed of doing great things, of going on adventures, he liked the routine of a farmer's life.
He had always helped his mother around the farm. His father had passed away years ago. He had been too young to remember him now. As Soren grew bigger, he started taking chores from his mother, but now he and the boys from two houses over, Ax and Esben, worked the farm.
Soren's days consisted of getting up when the cock crowed, feeding the chickens, letting the cows and the horse out on the meadows and then doing whatever needed to be done. He and his mother owned a patch of land that hadn't been used for a while after his father had died and about five years ago, he had seeded the ground and now it was a blooming field of gold, stalks of wheat waving in the wind.
His childlike longing hadn't really died out over the years, it had just been smouldering. He hadn't known that that day would set it a blazing again.
When he got out of the field of gold stalks, he put his tools down in a bucket standing by the fence and pulled his gloves off while walking towards the house. His thoughts weren't very deep, just ones of the weather and the harvest.
"What is it?" he called out as he stepped in through the doorway. He put his gloves down on a cabinet near the door and kicked the dirt off his boots before going through the hallway.
"Honey, I'm making tea, would you like some too?" Soren smiled as he poked his head around the corner of the sill to the kitchen. His mother was standing with her back to him, her long blond hair hanging down to her waist.
"Please," he said as he sat down at the table. "I hope that's not all you dragged me in for. Esben's out there working on his own now." She turned her head slightly to look at him out of the corner of her eye and smiled too.
"Of course that's not all." She picked the warm kettle up with a tick mitten around her hands and poured the hot water into two cups that were already on the table. The leaves that had been on the bottom drifted up and then slowly sank back down. He felt something was off, but he couldn't put his fingers on it. Dyre put the kettle away, sat down facing him and blew at the steam hovering over her cup.
"Soren," she said and sighed loudly. "There's something I've been meaning to tell, but I hadn't found the courage yet." She paused and Soren felt a tightness around his heart as he worried for his mother. "I'm going to tell you now, but you have to promise me that you'll let me finish the story."
"Of course," Soren answered immediately. "I'm not a boy anymore, mother." He put his hands around his cup to warm them up. Even though it was halfway spring, it was still cold outside. The plains of Rogar had the habit of warming up suddenly, over only a couple of weeks.
"Right," Dyre said, sighing again, "where do I begin?" She was silent for a few seconds, then her story took off, changing Soren's life forever.
"When I was younger, long before I had you, I met a girl with shining black hair and eyes as dark as coals. She offered me half of her cookie – a rare delicacy at the time. I declined, but she still put the half in my hand and we instantly became friends. And we stayed that way.
My friend was of high standing. So high, she regularly had the company of the Peninsula's Lasirn family. Because of our friendship, I sometimes joined her. Eventually, she married the Lasirn's eldest son, Bran. Soon she was expecting her first-born. At her eighteenth birthday, the Lasirn's son threw her a big party and she introduced me to the younger brother, Richard. I fell in love with him and we got married soon after. My friend's boy was born and a year later my first son was born too. Richard and I named him Erik. He was the most beautiful thing I'd ever seen, with his sparkly blue eyes and bright blond hair. He looked like his father.
Don't make that face, Soren, you promised to listen to all of it. So just drink your tea alright? You just need to bear with me.
Four years later, my friend's second child was born, another boy and her oldest and my little Erik looked after him wonderfully. When he was almost four, my friend and I were both highly pregnant and we were excited to have children at the same time. She had a baby girl and I had you, Soren.
But things didn't go smoothly when your father saw you. Erik had looked so much like him and you seemed to have nothing of him. Your dark hair seemed impossible to Richard. Against all reason and to my great grievance, he wouldn't acknowledge you as his son. He accused me of baring a child that wasn't my husband's. And he sent me away to this farm, with you in my arms.
I don't know what exactly went on at the castle after that, but I know this: my friend and her husband eventually took their children and disappeared. My friend came by to see me once after that, two years later. She told me they had fled to The Seven Lands and had a good life there, much like you and me. She said her children were doing well and that maybe, when things cooled down a little over here, they'd come back. But the children were raised not knowing what their heritage was. That's how they wanted it. She said goodbye to me after only a few hours after that. I never saw her again."