The Cave

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  No Houses
A short I wrote for a Creative Writing Class in College.

Stroven has decided to find the Cave that his adventurer parents were searching for but never returned from. He finds interesting information while there.

Submitted: October 22, 2016

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Submitted: October 22, 2016

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TheMid-Morning sun shone bright Over Karkith. Birds chirped and flew quickly through the air gliding from tree to tree as if the winds could push them forward never letting them fall. There had been no signs of dragons or any other monsters in the area for years. The temperature was cold but the seasons were changing and the snow and ice could be seen melting from the distant mountains. It was finally a peaceful time.

Stroven ran quickly outside from his house to see the beautiful day outside. “This is it!” he exclaimed aloud to himself. “Today is the day I finally see the cave.”

 

For months, years even, ­Stroven had been dreaming and preparing for the day he would go explore the cave. The local townsfolk thought he was crazy, they thought he was just a deranged young man with too much time on his hands. Yet, there was something that captivated each and every one of them about this young man.

Stroven did not come out of his house often, and when he did, it was only to check on his garden that he paid others to care for, or to pick some vegetables for his meals. He spent countless hours in the library that his parents had left for him after their deaths, studying, researching, and learning all he could about the world from the numberless amounts of books.

One day as he was reading through a book of the surrounding hills and mountains, he found a page that had been hand written in two sets of handwriting, his parents! He looked over the page over and over again until he had the whole page memorized word for word. It spoke about a cave that was outside the village that his parents had always wanted to go explore but they were never able to before they passed.

Now, the time had finally come, Stroven had finally prepared and was ready to explore the last thing his parents had wished to see. As Stroven left his home, he cast his eyes around the village; there was Trovill and his family, Darphur and his sons Bronil and Scorvin working at their blacksmith’s shop, and as he looked up his road he noticed the widow Prunil walking outside her house, but staring intently at his property, he couldn’t help but wonder why she would be doing that. Stroven decided to shake it off and continue his journey.

He walked and hiked for what seemed like hours upon hours, days upon days. He traversed through swamps, through forests, over the wildest terrain, all in search of this cave that his parents had so keenly sought after, feeling as if he may never live their legacy to the fullest. As he watched the sun move in the sky across the meridian he couldn’t help but wonder how far it really was to the cave. Then, one fateful morning as the sun was just beginning to shed all its light and power on the world, he was cresting the top of a hill he finally saw it, the cave! He was SO excited to finally see and discover the cave he started running down the hill but as he did, he saw two girls walking up the hill towards him.

He slowed down his run to a slow walk and tried to catch his breath before they met. As they got closer he could tell that they were both fair, girls, about his age. He couldn’t help but wonder why they were all alone and also why they were around the cave that his parents had wanted to find so badly.

As he approached them and they finally came face to face he could see them much better. They were tall, their skin was a light honey color, their faces full yet defined, and they were dressed in hand made animal skin clothing. They had strange markings on their faces but Stroven could not tell if they were scars, or some form of a tattoo or tribal marking.

“Hello, I am Stroven” The girls looked at Stroven like a child looks at snow for the first time. “I come from the village of Karkith many miles from here”.

“Hello, Stroven… I... I am Hopes, and this…. Is…. Dreams, my sister” She spoke with a small pause in her speech every couple words, almost as if she had not been taught how to speak properly.

Stroven could not help but notice the footprints of the girls behind them. They had come from the cave! Surely now Stroven had to know more about these girls so he could continue his search for whatever it was his parents desired so badly.

“Hopes? Well, that is a very beautiful name. I’ve never heard anyone called that before but it seems fitting” Stroven said trying to slowly walk around them towards the cave in hopes that they would continue walking with him. “You must tell me... how did you get….”

“Why are you here?!” Dreams exclaimed with a slightly menacing look on her face. She was able to speak much more clearly than Hopes was “We have nothing to offer and we do not like strangers”.

“I…. I am searching for…. for something that, my parents left behind in…. in…. my care” Stroven didn’t know how to react to this sudden opposing view. Hopes had been rather kind, but Dreams seemed to be much more uneasy around him. “They left me a book, and in it they told me that it was in that cave, there.”

Stroven noticed both sets of eyes quickly dart to the cave then back to him. Their bodies seemed to twitch as he had told them he was trying to get to the cave. He wondered what it was that was inside that was making them so skittish around him.

“You want…. To… go into…. The cave?” Hopes asked him “Why?”

“Like I said before, my parents left me a book and they were also searching for this cave. It was their dying wish to see what was inside of it.” Stroven hoped that with the added emphasis that his parents had passed, that they would let him go to the cave.

Dreams turned her shoulder to him, as did Hopes, and they slowly started walking back towards the cave.

“Walk with us.” He heard Dreams say somewhat coldly, as if she didn’t really want him to. “We have much to discuss”

As they walked towards the cave, Stroven could not stop thinking about his parents, all they had lived for, and all that they had died for. He vowed to himself that if he made it home, he would never stop exploring just as his parents had, to live on in their legacy and never look back.

“Sit”

Stroven looked up from the ground for the first time and realized that they were at the mouth of the cave! Dreams was starring him down intently, she had been the one that told him to sit down. He noticed a fire pit, with a tripod over it, two separate sleeping areas, and what looked like an enormous pile of leaves and brush to the side of the cave entrance

Maybe a wagon, or cart of some kind Stroven thought to himself. I MUST find a way to get them to let me into the cave! If only they would let me speak with them.

“Why do you want to go into the cave?” Dreams asked.

“I’ve already told you, my parents were….”

‘WHY?!?”

Dreams was in his face again. The muscles in her face tense with anger and he could see red coming into her skin. He couldn’t understand what was going on. He looked at Hopes with a pleading look and she came over to console her sister.

“Dreams, maybe if…. We just…. Let him go into the cave…. See what his parents wanted him to see… M... Maybe then he will come back…. And he will go back to his village speaking triumphs of his adventure…. But we can set a deal with him” Stroven listened more intently now as Hopes lowered her voice to nearly a whisper. “We will make him swear that he tells no one of us. Make him swear that he had to fight large and frightening beasts in order to enter the cave, and that… he nearly didn’t even… M… Make it back alive.”

Hopes had raised a fair conclusion and Dreams seemed to be calming down.

“Su… Surely if he were to do that, we would… Be safe and would not have to leave.”

Dreams look back at Stroven with a changed look on her face, almost a sad desire, as if she were worried about something, but willing to try at the same time.

“Fine.” She said in a less than willing tone. “But he must swear that he will NEVER return, and he will tell NO ONE of us.”

“YES!” Stroven exclaimed loudly. “I swear it! I will tell no one of our encounter, please just let me enter the cave!”

“You may go.” Dreams said with a slight hint of disgust as she moved out of the way of the entrance. “Please, know this is all that we have”

As Stroven made his way towards the entrance to the cave, he stopped to think

“This is all that my parents wanted me to do, should I do it now?” Stroven wondered “What will I do with the rest of my life if I can’t come back, or even tell anyone of these girls I met here? I can’t worry about that now. I must go see what my parents were searching after”

The entrance to the cave was very cold, as if they cave went down into a freezing cavern. The walls were covered in water droplets but none of them had frozen. Stroven wondered how that were possible with it being so cold. As he continued onward he noticed a light coming from a bend in front of him. His curiosity increased and as he rounded the corner he finally saw it, what his parents had been looking for. He was completely taken aback.

The walls, floor, and ceiling of the cave had completely changed from the dark grey rock, into sparkling marble, crystal and a strange rock he did not recognize, it glittered and shimmered lighting the whole room he was in. there was a clear small stream running through the middle of the room down at the bottom. The room must have been the size of 10 Great Halls of Kings. Never had Stroven been anywhere so spacious, and so bright!

As he was walking down towards more of the stone, he touched a wall and noticed that his hands had brushed over a strange powder. He began to be very tired at a rapid pace and didn’t know what to do.

He slowly fell onto the floor his body limp and exhausted but as his eyes slowly closed themselves he saw two bodies standing over him, it was Dreams and Hopes. Stroven tried to communicate, tried to tell them not to touch the walls.

“We’ve got him.” Said Hopes. Her speech suddenly sounding perfectly fine. “Just like we got his parents.”

As Stroven finally let himself slip into what he knew would be his final sleep, he realized, THIS was where his parents had gone, THIS was what they had been searching for. His parents had been trying to stop these two girls and they never were able to escape the desires of their hearts that ultimately led to their demise. Just as they had to his. His own personal Hopes and Dreams had never led him so astray.


© Copyright 2017 Joe Bouchelle IV. All rights reserved.

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