|Moments of Our Lives
Author: Musicality PM
The worst has come. The Drow have invaded, and it is up to Ririthe and her brother Elvaniel to save their city from being destroyed forever.Rated: Fiction T - English - Hurt/Comfort/Adventure - Words: 1,681 - Reviews: 1 - Follows: 1 - Published: 11-17-12 - id: 3075145
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
The screaming was what woke me. My eyes snapped open and I sat up in my bed, frantically looking around for the source of the screams, confused when I saw nothing in my dark bedroom. However, I could still hear the awful, distressed cacophony of terrified screams, and figured out that it was coming from outside. Confused, I swung my legs over the side of my bed and stood up. As I was wiping the remaining sleep from my eyes and becoming more alert, I noticed that a soft orange glow was seeping through the stained-glass window from outside, lighting up my shadowy bedroom in a rainbow of colors.
"Did they light the lamps already?" I muttered to myself. Usually the streetlamps were snuffed around midnight, when the night Watch finished their rounds. They were lit again by the Watch the next evening. But as I watched the puddle of colors on my bedroom floor, I decided that this was more light than the streetlamps could produce, especially enough to burst through my window this powerfully. I slowly started toward the window, the silk of my nightgown trailing on the floor. As I got closer, I could also hear the clang of metal against metal. Swords? I was filled to the brim with curiosity now, and was almost in front of my window when the glass panes exploded, showering shards of colorful glass across the room. I dove to the floor, protecting my face with my hands and hissing in pain when some glass cut through my nightgown and hit my legs. When the glass stopped falling, I removed my hands from my face and sat up. I was surprised to see that a lump of…something was on the floor in front of the shattered window. The light coming from outside penetrated the darkness enough that I could make out cloth and leather covering the lump, and that it was shiny with something red.
'What is that?' I thought, straining to see the object on my floor better. Having no luck, I realized that I had no choice but to investigate. Shoving my feet into a pair of slippers to protect them from the glass on the floor, I inched toward the lump of cloth and leather. I had almost reached it when I passed in front of the window. I turned my head and gasped. Outside was a nightmare. Many of the tall, columned buildings were on fire, and I could see silhouettes of fellow Elves in the windows, struggling to escape the flames. All through the street were mostly soldiers and the Watch, clad in silver armor and helmets, battling shadowy figures with swords. As I watched, more shadowy figures and soldiers fell, brought down by arrows showering from the rooftops. I gasped and dropped to the floor as one of the shadows turned toward me, and hoped that I had hidden quickly enough. Apparently I had, since nothing else flew through the window. Now that I was on the floor, I realized that my hands had fallen into something sticky and warm that seemed to be coming from the lump on the floor. But it wasn't until the strong metallic stench hit my nose that I finally realized what the substance was. Blood. This was a body.
I screamed and scrambled away from the body, cutting my hands on more glass shards. My mind was whirling with questions as I sank back against my bed, holding my head in my blood-stained hands. Who were these people in Pryden? Why were they here? Why was there a body in my bedroom? Friend or foe? What was going on? These questions threatened to overwhelm me, but I fought them down and stood up, tense with fear and determination. I had to find my family and make sure they were safe.
But no sooner had this thought run through my head than a figure appeared in the archway of my bedroom. I gasped and back away from it, looking frantically around for something to use as a weapon. However, I didn't need to, for the figure stepped out of the shadow of the archway and into the glow of the fires, revealing itself to be my mother, Isiolia Oliander, her long red hair falling around her waist and her blue eyes wide with fear.
"Mother!" I ran over to her and hugged her tight, burying my face in her skirt. "What's going on?"
She pulled me away from her and crouched down, holding me at arms-length.
"Ririthe, dear…it's the Drow. They've come." Her face was full of sadness as she held me close.
My head was spinning. The Drow? Why were they…oh. I remembered. Long ago, when the Elves were finding places to live, the High Elves found a region in the mountains, which they named Calithia. One of the cities in Calithia, which was named Pryden, happened to be built above a large supply of underground crystals, which the Dark Elves, or Drow, used to trade from their region of Bowin, a place that extended for many miles underground. The Drow demanded that the High Elves let them drill under Pryden in order to obtain the crystals, but the ruler of Calithia, Lord Unebril Caluldur, refused, knowing that the city would collapse if too much earth was removed under it. This angered the Drow immensely, and they declared war on Calithia. The fighting lasted for weeks with many deaths, but the High Elves finally won, if only by a little. But as the Drow were retreating, their ruler, Lord Eowung Unalas, swore that there would be a time when they would return and Pryden would fall. That was 10,000 years ago. And it looked like that time was now.
"Mother, what do we do? Where are Father and Elvaniel?" Elvaniel was was my brother, and was 140 years old, while I was only 100(about fourteen and ten in human years, respectively).
"Your Father has gone out to fight, and Elvaniel is safe," my mother replied in a whisper. "He's waiting for you in the kitchen, so hurry."
It dawned on me what she was saying, and I gasped and held her tighter.
"No, we can't leave! Elvaniel and I should stay and fight! We can-" My mother cut me off with a gentle finger on my lips. I closed my mouth, tears streaming down my face.
"You must leave, Ririthe," my mother said, with a gentle but firm voice. "You have to get out of the city and travel to the castle and alert Lord Caluldur. Get him to send reinforcements. Do you understand?" I nodded, and she hugged me once more before standing up. "Good. Now, get ready. You and your brother must leave as soon as possible. And wear your cloak over your head at all times. There could be Drow spies crawling all over Calithia for all we know." With that, she left the room, and I was left alone, with a body in my room and a pain in my heart.
Soon after my mother left my bedroom, I forced myself into action. First, I slipped out of my silk nightgown and put on a sturdier outfit. Brown leggings, old, faded blue tunic, and brown leather boots that reached my knees. All old things of my brother's. Chore clothing. I grabbed a knapsack and stuffed various supplies into it-extra clothes, vials of medicine and other substances (I was a Healer in training), etc. Satisfied that I hadn't missed anything, I grabbed my long brown cloak from its hook on the wall and draped it over my shoulders, pulling the hood up to conceal my ears and half my face in shadow. Casting one last sad glance over my bedroom, I hurried through the archway and down the corridor to the kitchen.
I crept into the open kitchen, looking around for Elvaniel. Finally, I saw the silhouette of my brother. He was crouched next to the archway leading to outside, holding his sword at the ready in case any Drow tried to get inside.
"Elvaniel!" I hissed, hopefully loud enough to get his attention. It was. Elvaniel started at whipped around, relaxing a little and walking over to me. He was dressed similarly to me, with a dark green tunic and khaki-colored, baggy leggings with pockets. His cloak was draped across his shoulders, and the hood was up like mine. Mother must have told him what she told me.
"There you are! I was starting to worry that…" He trailed off uncomfortably, then rushed over and hugged me. "Hey, sis." His elbow-length fire-red hair, which he had inherited from our mother, was pulled back into a half-up, half-down style, and the loose part tickled my face. Despite the circumstances, I giggled a little and pushed him away.
"I'm fine, don't worry," I said quietly, and Elvaniel smiled a bit before reaching to the table and throwing me two things that had been leaning against it. My staff and bow. Elvaniel also had a bow, but liked swordplay more.
"Now you're ready, Ririthe." He said. I nodded and slung my quiver over my back before pulling my long honey-colored up into a practical ponytail, the two thin braids on either side of my head dangling free.
"Yes, I am." I crept over to the entrance and waited while he followed me.
"Let's get out of here and help the city," he said, and we stepped through the archway, into the fiery place that used to be Pryden.
Yeah, it's a rewrite. I just wasn't happy with this chapter, so with a bit more pulling and tweaking, I came out with this! Still not completely satisfied, but are writers ever? Please let me know what you think…come on, just press the little Review button down there! Right there, right below these words. You can do it!