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I need some tips on making this longer and better! Please Help

Short story By: Dakotah
Fantasy



This is a short story I'm writing for a competition. I would like it to add a little length to it, and make it better. Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!


Submitted:Aug 15, 2012    Reads: 25    Comments: 2    Likes: 3   


This is a first rough draft: "Please Zarhul let us escape" Lauster prayed between gasps for air as he pushed the queen and her four young boys through the dense undergrowth. He peaked over his shoulder, making sure the horse were as far away as they sounded. They had ran from the openness and vulnerability of the flat grassland almost two days ago, or had it been three? Lauster couldn't remember. His legs ached with almost unbearable pain, and each step felt heavier than the last. Each time he tripped over a root it was harder to recover. That had bought them some time. For a few hours the crashing of the horses through the trees could only slightly hear d above the soft breeze. But they were closer now, much closer. "Zarhul please" he pleaded. He looked up through a clearing in the trees searching for Zarhul's constellation. The old folk said if you could see her stars she would answer your prayers. His heart dropped as he saw the constellation get covered by moving clouds. There would be no help from the gods tonight.

The party came to a halt on the banks of the noble river. It rushed by high and strong, rapids formed over rock beds and its sounds drowned out everything, even the sounds of the horses so close behind. The man saw his chance. "Get in it" he said pointing to the river.

"We'll freeze" the women replied. Her arms wrapped around her four boys. They were all panting hard. He was surprised they had been able to run this long. They were strong boys who would become strong men. He was sure of it, and it was his job to make sure they had the chance.

"Maybe you'll freeze, maybe you won't, but if you stay here you'll die."

"Come with us Lauster?" she asked "I don't know the roads."

"As soon as you flow under the first bridge, climb out. Follow that road to the nearest city, and hide. Blend in. Survive. Now go!" The woman looked at him for a second, her eyes changed as she realized what he meant to do. A tear fell down her cheek as she lightly pushed the boys into the water. The man watched them for a second before he turned around, back from where he came. He guessed he have just a minute before the pursuers would be upon him. He ran about thirty steps up their trail and there he stopped. He relaxed his shoulders and closed his eyes. He stuck his hands out before and began to rotate them as if they were circling a globe. After a couple of second a globe began to lightly appear in his hands. After a few more he took them a way. The globe was very light, almost impossible to see if you were looking for it, impossible to see if you weren't. It floated four feet off the ground a bounced a little in place. The man ran up a couple of steps and made another globe. He did this four more times before he ran back to the banks of the river.

He sat down on the bank. He crossed his legs took deep breath, closed his eyes and then opened them. He didn't see the forest in front of him though. He saw the forest in front of the globes. He could see what was in front of them. All of them at once or just one at a time, he flew from one to the next checking to see if the pursuers had passed any of them. He was looking through the first one he had formed when he saw the first glimpse of them.

They were all riding large war horses. Horses not made for speed, but for endurance and strength. But their enormous size had forced them to have to move carefully through the woods. He counted ten horses in all. He couldn't tell what any of the men looked like though. They all wore shifter armor. It changed shape constantly, growing bigger, then smaller. It made it extremely difficult to be able to tell the people you were facing apart. "They must be working for someone extremely important' he thought. Shifter armor was expensive, the only person that could have afforded ten suits was the king, or high noble. It couldn't have been the king, because the king was dead. Killed by these very same men, Lauster had been there, he had tried to stop the attackers, but he couldn't get there in time. He had watched the king fall a sword through his gut and an ax embedded his neck. If he couldn't save the king, he could at least save the queen and her sons. He ran to her bedroom, his worst fears floating through his head. They got worse as he heard the clattering of swords coming from their room. He kicked open the door, and inside there were three assassins, but they were all dead, the sound he had heard was their swords falling to the floor.

The four boys stood in front of their mother protectively. The oldest had his fist raised, but in front of him two small rocks about the size of his fists floated in the air. The second oldest was barely visible, his image faded in and out. The third where his fists should have been were swords, the light from the torches glinted off them. The fourth and youngest brother had his hands raised just like the rest. He eyes were intently focused on Lauster though. Lauster was shocked when he actually felt his power begin to drain from him. "A power drainer" he thought. "There hasn't been one of those in decades." The queen calmed them down when she noticed it was Lauster.

"Lauster what has happened" she asked. The fear was apparent in her voice.

"We must go now" was all he said. They had escaped the city through the sewers. He had hoped they would of at least got a day head start, but the assassins were after them a before the city walls were below the horizon. After a night of running they had cut into woods. They had been in the woods for two days. Only take short breaks of no more than 20 minutes at time. He had thought they were all going to be able to escape. He had thought that until he had watched the Zarhul, the god of his faith, disappear behind. That's when he knew tonight was his time to die.

He waited until the first horse reached last ball that he had placed. And then he severed his connection with them. His eyes blinked a couple of times before they readjusted to his normal point of view again. He smiled as he heard the explosions and the screams of men and horses. His timing had been perfect. When the connection between him and the globes had been broken, they had self-destructed throwing flames and dangerous spirit shrapnel everywhere. Spirit shrapnel was what got him into the king's guard. With every hit it got it stole a little of the victims spirit away and gave it back to the creator of the ball as well as any person within in 5 feet of them. Lauster knew he had scored a large amount of hits this time. His back and legs were not sore any more. And all the power he had used to create the globes was almost all replenished. He stood up, his body felt fresh, he was ready.

After a few moments the dying men and horses stopped screaming. The woods were quiet again. Then two men came walking out of the woods into the clearing before the bank. Both of them had ditched their shifter armor. It was probably damaged in the explosion. One was a giant, if Lauster would of put his arms stretched above his head his fingers maybe would have reached the giant's chin. The giant's face was charred on the left side, it looked like his eye lid had been burnt closed. "The giant will be an easy kill, he won't be able to see me if I attack from his left side. The man beside the giant was much smaller. He was probably a whole hand shorter than Lauster and much skinnier. Across his chest from his right should to his left hip was a leather strip with loops sewed into it. Each loop was carrying a throwing knife. By the looks of it they were expensive knives. Whoever these people worked for was wealthy. "Why would a noble want the king dead?" He thought. King Howert was a good king to the nobles. He had lowered their taxes, given land to almost all of them. It wasn't in a noble's benefit to kill the king at all.

` "Where's the queen and her children, they are to come with us." The shorter man said.

"They were picked up by my companion, you've lost them." He lied.

"We will see about that" The shorter man said, as he grabbed a knife from his strap and threw it at Lauster. Lauster had just enough time to tuck his head and roll to the side, he heard the knife thud into the wet ground beside him, but before he could lift his head, he heard two knifes flying through the air. This time he didn't have enough time to roll, just enough to move. The first knife hit him right under the knee, and the other right under his ribs. He winced in pain, and tried to stand up. But his knee gave out, and he fell over, his face landing in the mud. "If it was this easy to kill you imagine how easy it will be to kill those kids" The shorter man mocked. "Oh and I'll take those knives back." He flicked his hand and Lauster could feel the steel pull out of his body and be replaces by warm blood.

Lauster panicked. He was going to die here today he knew that. But what made him panic was that he knew he hadn't given the queen enough time. They'd be caught if he didn't find a way to buy more time. He had an idea. He could place a globe right between them, explode it, killing all three of them. He had never placed a globe not using his hands before. The elders said it took an enormous amount of power. He took a deep breath. The shorter man was saying something but he ignored him. He closed his eyed and imagined a globe between the two men. An image began to sputter inside his head. It was working! "Just a second more" he thought. He could feel his power draining He felt his heart beat faster, it was getting harder to breath. He was killing himself.

"The bastard is making a bomb." The short man yelled "Kill him!" Lauster felt a knife thud into his neck. It was too late though. His globe was ready. He had a second to hear the screams before he was engulfed in flames. He had a second to know the queen was safe. A second to know he had done his job.

"Please Zarhul let us escape" Lauster prayed between gasps for air as he pushed the queen and her four young boys through the dense undergrowth. He peaked over his shoulder, making sure the horse were as far away as they sounded. They had ran from the openness and vulnerability of the flat grassland almost two days ago, or had it been three? Lauster couldn't remember. His legs ached with almost unbearable pain, and each step felt heavier than the last. Each time he tripped over a root it was harder to recover. That had bought them some time. For a few hours the crashing of the horses through the trees could only slightly hear d above the soft breeze. But they were closer now, much closer. "Zarhul please" he pleaded. He looked up through a clearing in the trees searching for Zarhul's constellation. The old folk said if you could see her stars she would answer your prayers. His heart dropped as he saw the constellation get covered by moving clouds. There would be no help from the gods tonight.

The party came to a halt on the banks of the noble river. It rushed by high and strong, rapids formed over rock beds and its sounds drowned out everything, even the sounds of the horses so close behind. The man saw his chance. "Get in it" he said pointing to the river.

"We'll freeze" the women replied. Her arms wrapped around her four boys. They were all panting hard. He was surprised they had been able to run this long. They were strong boys who would become strong men. He was sure of it, and it was his job to make sure they had the chance.

"Maybe you'll freeze, maybe you won't, but if you stay here you'll die."

"Come with us Lauster?" she asked "I don't know the roads."

"As soon as you flow under the first bridge, climb out. Follow that road to the nearest city, and hide. Blend in. Survive. Now go!" The woman looked at him for a second, her eyes changed as she realized what he meant to do. A tear fell down her cheek as she lightly pushed the boys into the water. The man watched them for a second before he turned around, back from where he came. He guessed he have just a minute before the pursuers would be upon him. He ran about thirty steps up their trail and there he stopped. He relaxed his shoulders and closed his eyes. He stuck his hands out before and began to rotate them as if they were circling a globe. After a couple of second a globe began to lightly appear in his hands. After a few more he took them a way. The globe was very light, almost impossible to see if you were looking for it, impossible to see if you weren't. It floated four feet off the ground a bounced a little in place. The man ran up a couple of steps and made another globe. He did this four more times before he ran back to the banks of the river.

He sat down on the bank. He crossed his legs took deep breath, closed his eyes and then opened them. He didn't see the forest in front of him though. He saw the forest in front of the globes. He could see what was in front of them. All of them at once or just one at a time, he flew from one to the next checking to see if the pursuers had passed any of them. He was looking through the first one he had formed when he saw the first glimpse of them.

They were all riding large war horses. Horses not made for speed, but for endurance and strength. But their enormous size had forced them to have to move carefully through the woods. He counted ten horses in all. He couldn't tell what any of the men looked like though. They all wore shifter armor. It changed shape constantly, growing bigger, then smaller. It made it extremely difficult to be able to tell the people you were facing apart. "They must be working for someone extremely important' he thought. Shifter armor was expensive, the only person that could have afforded ten suits was the king, or high noble. It couldn't have been the king, because the king was dead. Killed by these very same men, Lauster had been there, he had tried to stop the attackers, but he couldn't get there in time. He had watched the king fall a sword through his gut and an ax embedded his neck. If he couldn't save the king, he could at least save the queen and her sons. He ran to her bedroom, his worst fears floating through his head. They got worse as he heard the clattering of swords coming from their room. He kicked open the door, and inside there were three assassins, but they were all dead, the sound he had heard was their swords falling to the floor.

The four boys stood in front of their mother protectively. The oldest had his fist raised, but in front of him two small rocks about the size of his fists floated in the air. The second oldest was barely visible, his image faded in and out. The third where his fists should have been were swords, the light from the torches glinted off them. The fourth and youngest brother had his hands raised just like the rest. He eyes were intently focused on Lauster though. Lauster was shocked when he actually felt his power begin to drain from him. "A power drainer" he thought. "There hasn't been one of those in decades." The queen calmed them down when she noticed it was Lauster.

"Lauster what has happened" she asked. The fear was apparent in her voice.

"We must go now" was all he said. They had escaped the city through the sewers. He had hoped they would of at least got a day head start, but the assassins were after them a before the city walls were below the horizon. After a night of running they had cut into woods. They had been in the woods for two days. Only take short breaks of no more than 20 minutes at time. He had thought they were all going to be able to escape. He had thought that until he had watched the Zarhul, the god of his faith, disappear behind. That's when he knew tonight was his time to die.

He waited until the first horse reached last ball that he had placed. And then he severed his connection with them. His eyes blinked a couple of times before they readjusted to his normal point of view again. He smiled as he heard the explosions and the screams of men and horses. His timing had been perfect. When the connection between him and the globes had been broken, they had self-destructed throwing flames and dangerous spirit shrapnel everywhere. Spirit shrapnel was what got him into the king's guard. With every hit it got it stole a little of the victims spirit away and gave it back to the creator of the ball as well as any person within in 5 feet of them. Lauster knew he had scored a large amount of hits this time. His back and legs were not sore any more. And all the power he had used to create the globes was almost all replenished. He stood up, his body felt fresh, he was ready.

After a few moments the dying men and horses stopped screaming. The woods were quiet again. Then two men came walking out of the woods into the clearing before the bank. Both of them had ditched their shifter armor. It was probably damaged in the explosion. One was a giant, if Lauster would of put his arms stretched above his head his fingers maybe would have reached the giant's chin. The giant's face was charred on the left side, it looked like his eye lid had been burnt closed. "The giant will be an easy kill, he won't be able to see me if I attack from his left side. The man beside the giant was much smaller. He was probably a whole hand shorter than Lauster and much skinnier. Across his chest from his right should to his left hip was a leather strip with loops sewed into it. Each loop was carrying a throwing knife. By the looks of it they were expensive knives. Whoever these people worked for was wealthy. "Why would a noble want the king dead?" He thought. King Howert was a good king to the nobles. He had lowered their taxes, given land to almost all of them. It wasn't in a noble's benefit to kill the king at all.

` "Where's the queen and her children, they are to come with us." The shorter man said.

"They were picked up by my companion, you've lost them." He lied.

"We will see about that" The shorter man said, as he grabbed a knife from his strap and threw it at Lauster. Lauster had just enough time to tuck his head and roll to the side, he heard the knife thud into the wet ground beside him, but before he could lift his head, he heard two knifes flying through the air. This time he didn't have enough time to roll, just enough to move. The first knife hit him right under the knee, and the other right under his ribs. He winced in pain, and tried to stand up. But his knee gave out, and he fell over, his face landing in the mud. "If it was this easy to kill you imagine how easy it will be to kill those kids" The shorter man mocked. "Oh and I'll take those knives back." He flicked his hand and Lauster could feel the steel pull out of his body and be replaces by warm blood.

Lauster panicked. He was going to die here today he knew that. But what made him panic was that he knew he hadn't given the queen enough time. They'd be caught if he didn't find a way to buy more time. He had an idea. He could place a globe right between them, explode it, killing all three of them. He had never placed a globe not using his hands before. The elders said it took an enormous amount of power. He took a deep breath. The shorter man was saying something but he ignored him. He closed his eyed and imagined a globe between the two men. An image began to sputter inside his head. It was working! "Just a second more" he thought. He could feel his power draining He felt his heart beat faster, it was getting harder to breath. He was killing himself.

"The bastard is making a bomb." The short man yelled "Kill him!" Lauster felt a knife thud into his neck. It was too late though. His globe was ready. He had a second to hear the screams before he was engulfed in flames. He had a second to know the queen was safe. A second to know he had done his job.





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