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Branwen

Novel By: Eresed
Fantasy


Tags: Elf, Half, Magic, Travel, Love


Rated because I'm still not sure where it's going.
This too was started a few years ago, so cc is greatly appreciated. (And please, if you notice any punctuation errors, let me know...this dang thing has been reformatted by Word so many times that it kind of died.) View table of contents...


Chapters:

1 2 3 4 5 6

Submitted:Sep 9, 2008    Reads: 197    Comments: 6    Likes: 3   


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Chapter One

I'm Branwen. I'm half an elf, half a troll, and all bad temper.

Now that that's over with, we can get on with this.
What?
Oh.
Yes, Master Lindir.

He wants me to have a good attitude about this, since it's "for my own good".

I'm sure it is. It's also about as much fun as getting my ears ripped off my head….actually, I think I might prefer the ear-ripping. Good attitude be cursed. Nobody cares about the history of a half-breed, especially one as obnoxious as I am.

What?

Yes I am!I'm-

Hello, I'm Lindir, Branwen's teacher. Let us set the record straight, hmm? First, I am not forcing Bran to do this. There were no threats of ear-ripping. However, I did suggest that she perform this as an exercise in patience. Second, despite what she says, she is not generally obnoxious. Irritating, perhaps, but not obnoxious. Now, Branwen, I'll let you have the pen back if you promise not to have a negative attitude.

Huh. Fine. I promise not to have a negative attitude.

All right. Here's my story. I was born. I lived with my stepfather. I hated him. I ran away. I ended up here. The end.

Bran! That isn't what I meant! I meant for you to have detail. Not just the bare bones of the story.

Oh, fine. I was born in Southern Calderae, the bastard child of an elven princess and a renegade troll. (Go figure. What did you expect to happen to a female elf when a bunch of male trolls invaded her home?) My mother obviously couldn't stay in her home after that, so she decided to go as far away as possible. She traveled from Amanar to Calderae, and the entire journey took her eight months. By that time she was very pregnant with me, and stopped in the first town she came to. She threw herself on the mercy of the townsfolk, and one of them, a bachelor by the name of Beleg, offered to take her in. She accepted, and one month later, I came along.

I won't bore you with a detailed, day-to-day account of my life, as it would consist of nothing so much as 18 years of dirty looks and slights about my appearance (dark-skinned, pointy-eared, and tall as opposed to the fair skinned, round-eared, short villagers). Anyway, I'll spare you that and skip right to the turning point in my life.

Three days before my 18th birthday, a stranger came to Seri (My hometown. Sounds like a girl's name, doesn't it?). Nothing strange in and of itself. But this stranger claimed to have the ability to root out demons and changelings. He was so obviously a fake that I can't understand how anyone could have believed him. But they did.

Part of his act was that he had to have dinner with the family that wanted to be checked for "evil beings" as the charlatan referred to them. (Perfect way to get a free meal on top of the fee he charged) One night, he came to our house. My stepfather had invited him.

We had hardly sat down to dinner when he started looking at me and my mother suspiciously. Nevertheless, he loaded up his knife and took a huge bite of the meat. After chewing for a few seconds, he suddenly stopped. He started gagging, and in between his (obviously) fake gags, he said, "Poison! There--there is the--the evil that plagues this town." Here he paused and dramatically flung his arm towards me and my mother. He then conveniently expired. It was all a fake of course. As soon as the townsfolk were busy running us off, he would slip away and be off to the next town.

It worked like a charm. Beleg threw us out of the house, literally, and called for help. Some people came, mostly children at first, and started pelting us with pebbles. As more adults arrived, the rocks became bigger. We regained our feet and lit out for the outskirts of town, with the rocks still flying at us. Then, with freedom in sight, a well-placed rock hit my mother in the back of her head. She stumbled and fell, and then the villagers were on us like a pack of hounds. As they swarmed over my mother, she cried out to me, "Run, Branna!"Those were her last words. I ran, and I didn't stop 'till I was halfway to Murra. (Oh, by the way, I sort of changed my name once I left Seri, just in case anyone was after me.)

I would have cried when I had time, except that I knew that it wouldn't do any good. Instead, I stopped and calmed down my breathing. I then found a nice tree and sat beneath it. In a few moments, I was deep in meditation. I took my grief and anger at my mother's death, and locked it deep inside. Literally.

As a child, I found that I could keep tight control of my emotions by envisioning a tightly locked room, and locking whatever I was feeling in there. It was a useful skill. Particularly now, when I couldn't afford to let my emotions get the better of me.

In a while, after I had grown used to the idea of being alone, I could let them loose and have a good cry, and go beat my head against a tree, or whatever else I thought would help. (Although, now that I think about it, I don't think that, until Torlas, I ever looked back on anything that I stored in my little room. I think that I conveniently forgot it all. But I'm getting ahead of myself.)

Running was all well and good, but as I assessed my situation, I realized that, other than the clothes on my back and my small eating knife, I had absolutely nothing of value. I would have to trade work for food. And unless I wanted that work to be of the kind that most women down on their luck take, I'd better change from being Branna to being Bran. Also, I wouldn't have to worry about being accosted on the road, either. I jumped off the path, and, using my knife, proceeded to chop off my hair. I was already wearing trews, because my stepfather insisted that I help him in the fields, in absence of a son. My chest was a slightly larger problem (No pun intended). I solved that by ripping my undershirt in strips and binding it around my chest. It was very uncomfortable, but it would have to do. With that done, I continued on my way.





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