Broken Arrow

The winds have changed. I can sense their growing ease, or perhaps it's unease. The wind doesn't whisper as it once had. The tales it tells are becoming a distant memory now that it's silent. It seems a pity that wind travels so far and yet holds its tales so close. I wish it would share its secrets with me once more. Even if it simply to tell me how I'm hated.

The terrain is silent and unmoving where I dream of. The world is still where I now stand. No matter where I turn my gaze the world is a dull emptiness. The wind has abandoned me and my dreams. Has it left me to dream for myself? Or am I no longer captivated by its enthralling tales? I cannot help but wonder if this is a foreshadowing of what is to come.

I hope the wind doesn't whisper tales of my location…

Ω

The sunlight begins to penetrate the dark cave. The injured soldiers stir irritably from the intrusion of light. Breei shifts, her head moving from side to side wearily. The night had not been kind to her and she finds herself exhausted. She shakes her head slowly and wipes the sleep from her eyes. She pushes herself up onto her feet, preparing for the long day ahead.

Mumbles and groans rise about her as the wounded begin to wake. She reaches for her cloth and dips it into the cool water of the bucket. She moves to the first conscious patient and dabs his forehead. Her eyes remain fixated on the patient, watching for any signs of pain and infection. She sighs in relief as the patient seems well.

She smiles at the person to try and reassure him. Then she stands up and walks to the cave entrance to wring the cloth out. She freezes for a moment as the first rays of sun touch her. She cautiously looks up at the cold daylight shining through the dead undergrowth. She shudders and inches back from the entrance. The cloth is thoroughly, quickly, wrung, and she rushes back inside to tend to the next patient.

Breei kneels by another soldier and dabs his forehead in the exact same way as she had with the other. This patient groans and mumbles, making a fuss even though it isn't painful. She frowns at him, wondering how she can possibly make it better. However, the small groan from Kŕovo makes her flinch. She turns to him, pleading silently for him to be patient. He simply growls in response, glaring fiercely in aggravation.

"You needn't allow them to gain such control over you," Marlia states, mildly.

Breei nods, feeling encouraged by the advice. She turns her entire concentration to her patient who's suddenly very silent and compliant. Marlia smiles at Breei's enthusiasm, but she hasn't forgotten Kŕovo's impatience. She glares over at him as she pulls a sodden cloth from the water bucket. Carefully, moving like a hunting predator, she slinks closer to him. Unnerved, he tries to keep his eyes away, but her radiant rage is inescapable.

Ω

The nurses scream and duck, covering their heads as an explosion rumbles the ground. Small, loose pebble-like stones fall from crevices in the concave ceiling. The patients stay silent, but terror is etched onto their taut faces. The nurses tremble on the ground, wailing and weeping in fright. More and more explosions bloom into violent vermillion flowers.

In the deeper chambers of the cave Breei and Marlia remain. Marlia has been serving in the healers divisions for mere months, but she has grown accustomed to the violent explosions. Breei, on the other hand, has only been serving for a week or so. Not only is she new, but nursing was chosen for her opposed to Marlia who had carried herself on her determination to do well in her chosen path.

Marlia makes her way over to Breei. She casts a swift glance to see if Matron Gilseilve is close by before embracing the frightened nurse. In such close proximity she can feel Breei's sobs. She knows that she can't comfort the young woman for long, and even if she could, it wouldn't do much good. She pulls away and drags Breei to her feet. With determination and clarity she leads the way to the main chamber despite the tumultuous conditions.

As she reaches the tunnel, Kŕovo grasps her arm. She stares at him in shock, wondering how he made it with his wounds. Still impatient as always, and perhaps seeing his chance for vengeance, he pushes her back. Marlia and Breei tumble into a heap on the floor. Moments later the tunnel has begun to collapse.

Kŕovo slips closer to them. He wraps them in his strong, but slightly ailed, arms. Marlia allows her guard to fall away entirely as he takes charge. His instincts from the battle field are re-surfacing. He urges them to lie down as flat as they can. They obey immediately, fearful of the consequences of disobeying him. The quaking soon reaches an end.

Marlia stares at the dishevelled surroundings. "Is everyone alright?"

"Argh," Kŕovo hisses. "Don't mind me. We're all alive and will hopefully be for days to come."

"Days?" Marlia asks in disbelief.

He turns to her, grim. "This is a war; it's the best that we can hope for…"

Ω

Dear whispering wind flowing in time. Dear waters shedding silent tears. Dear flames of rage and lighting life.