Chapter 7: New Bodies

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Reads: 25

VII

New Bodies

 

We're gone!

Fortisa ran into the cottage, snatched her belongings and anything that looked important.  William's ears perked forward as she dashed towards him.  She flung herself and the items onto this back.  William didn't need a kick to his ribs.  Her fear...enough motivation to race to the road beyond.

Fortisa and William wandered for most of the day.  Spicewood Forest shifted little this time.  Fortisa let her mind meander with calming thoughts.  The daydreaming relieved the headache after a time.

Come late afternoon, the smell of a campfire enticed her. 

“What do you think, William?  Should we spy on the party?”

She leaped off William and followed the scent.  Before too long a popping, orange campfire appeared in the glade ahead. 

Odd, no one is tending the fire.  My gut sense says, stay away. 

Can’t.

Smoke swirled from the logs in front of a rough lean-to.  Two bodies lay inside.  The oozing boils told her everything.

She kicked dirt to smother the fire and tramped back to William.

I don’t know what I’m doing. 

Frior Andrew.  Concentrate on him. 

Maybe should go and see if Dragon’s head is above his tear-pond.

As the night birds twitted the blue-black sky revealed the first stars of the evening…and Michail.

“Following me, Michail?”

“Seems to me, if so, wouldn't Dolce stand behind not in front of you.  More like, 'Running into me, Michail?'”  He mimicked.

Fortisa bowed her head attempting to conceal a smile that defied her effort.

“Just ahead…dead bodies.  I think they have the disease.  Boils.” 

“Death in the village, too.  The Inn…people buzzing with information.  They panicked when I shared mine, actually.  When people panic, they are capable of anything.”

For a while they rode silently together as the white wolf-moon rose in the darkening sky.

Michail leaped off of Dolce and tied the reins to a low branch.

“I think we should stop here.  The road isn’t visible anymore.” 

Fortisa did likewise.

“Michail, I don’t know about a fire.  Don’t want to attract attention to us.”

They sat on the ground.

“My gut says I should check on a friend of mine.  Yet, my gut also is nagging me to ferret out Frior Andrew.”

“Which is more important? Woman Warrior?”

Fortisa looked away smiling, at her new title.

“Visit my friend.”

“Glad to help you figure that one out.” 

Michail laid back, one hand beneath his head. 

Not knowing Michail slipped into slumber Fortisa asked, “Do you want to view the bodies I told you about?”

 


Submitted: May 06, 2020

© Copyright 2020 Elise Pannon. All rights reserved.

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