Tenet, Book One: The Foundation. (second revision)

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic


Tenet, Book One: The Foundation. 

 

Eight’s Overnight Tent Meet 

 

The night was calm and dry when eight rebels met in a tent to discuss an attack on a handful of Seuss Tribe guards; the tribe that had  imprisoned these male Kirk Tribe members, along with three hundred forty-two other Kirk men, for a total of eleven growing seasons but using a draft system to determine who would be the laborers for the one growing season of each altick, which is the combination of the two seasons; growing and shelter seasons. Leo Malen was selected in all eleven drafts. These were former tenant farmers of the Kirk Tribe under Seuss land and until this season, there were three hundred fifty imprisoned and used more as slaves instead of tenant farmers. The rest of the Kirk Tribe then knew they could not do anything about them and fight back for their farmers because they could not stand up to one of the most powerful groups in the region, the Seuss Tribe. So, the Kirks stood back and simply hoped no one else would be taken away. The eight men who met in the tent were Leo Malen, Christopher Phillips, Mitchell Kennelly, Jorge Carmichael, James Phillips, Simon Morgan, Hiram Matthews and Polaris Malen. All eight of them had to quietly sneak their way to the tent so the guards could not spot them. Leo Malen’s son Aris was selected in the draft for the first time and he was furious of this and would not stand for his son to be a slave. In the dead of the night, these men went to each tent housing Seuss officers, the guards who were assigned to keep watch over the imprisoned group, led by Leo Malen and quietly took them hostage and took their food, weapons and armor. After all the officers were held in captivity, they knew their time was limited before reinforcements came to check on the camp so two men were selected from the eight to make their way across the Munch River to their old family tribe, the Kirks. The Kirk Tribe had no interest in getting involved even though these prisoners were one of their own because they felt they had a good labor system going between them and the Suess. The “Morgan/Newt Run” was that quick quest when Simon Morgan and his friend Frederick Newt set off on their own, sent by the eight men to seek Kirk support just a few sun cycles before the rebellious act. The quest was unsuccessful and Malen was furious when he learned the Kirks would not assist their rebellion. Meanwhile, the farmers came up with multiple strategies to fight back against the Seuss soldiers who would come through to investigate in the area. During strategy discussions, everyone knew they needed a head general to carry out all orders. Everyone, including the reluctant pair of Christoper Phillips and his son James, chose Leo Malen to be that general. Malen was chosen because he and his son were in this area as prisoners the longest out of anyone or any family and he was the most enthusiastic man in the group. Leo was known for his fiery speeches that would strike the hearts of everyone listening. He was the one who started riot breakout plans against the Seuss multiple alticks ago. Phillips was scared of his long time accomplice Malen becoming the head general because he believed Malen was “dangerous beyond measure” and could accidentally get into a fight or battle with any random person or group. He said Malen was “too haunted” by being imprisoned and would long for total control of everyone’s battle plan. Even though Phillips had known Malen for seven alticks after becoming a prisoner as well, not before watching his wife and daughter fall dead to the terrible Salf disease, he never trusted him with leading. Malen hated when others disagreed with him and his ideas except when those critiques came from Christopher Phillips. The two men were not close friends but they had mutual understandings and a special bond of respect for each other since their families had been tied together long before into the families’ histories as Kirks. Leo and Christopher were of very different mindsets, Leo was an aggressive individual who made it apparent he’d fight for everyone in his family or group until death. Christopher considered himself to be a realist in which he knew that not every person or group can be saved or live forever. After being chosen, an old male prisoner gave Leo a small container with a pinch of fertile soil from the Munch River called “Munch’s Promise”. This was a classic tradition of these prisoners as it represented hope for a good and promising future. Soon after, Leo chose his longtime counterpart Christopher to be his right hand man or in Leo’s words, “Fielder”. This was a traditional word in this group that meant “backbone”. Malen preaches “Gentlemen, our home is and was made of betrayed tenant farmers! For the last eleven growing seasons we have been denied the name of even tenant farmers; except for one problem...we are slaves! But now we take that Tenant name back with a simple change. We will be known as Tenet! The tribe that is made up of many good folk with one good belief, and that belief is in each other!”

 

Seuss Tribe Response

 

The Seuss Tribe took notice that their guards had not come back for their monthly report at the end of growing season so their leader, Grand Marshal Nathan Waterbury, sent out his search party named the Trackers led by Captain Gerald Michaels, to investigate why the guards had not returned. Michaels and his men arrived in the area on the third sun cycle of the shelter season and were spotted by the prisoners. The prisoners, led by now General Malen, charged at the Trackers and captured them and took them to the main square of the camp. Malen wanted them killed immediately; however, Fielder Phillips pulled Malen aside and talked about the situation. Phillips said to Malen that he knew Michaels before he was a prisoner at the camp and the two of them were deep friends and ripped away from each other when Phillips was taken. Phillips wanted Michaels and his team spared and see if they would be willing to help out their fight against the Seuss. Malen was very hesitant and said to Phillips that Michaels could have easily changed in the time when you two last saw each other, afterall he was there for the Suess Grand Marshal. Malen went to Michaels and his men and asked what the Grand Marshal sent them here for. One soldier said the Grand Marshal was concerned that the guards who arrived on the first day of growing season and did not come back for their endseason report. Malen then said you can either join us in our fight against the Seuss or be taken prisoner just like your little friends over there. Malen pointed at the Suess guards who they had taken hostage earlier. The soldiers were very grateful for the offer and insisted on joining except for Captain Michaels. Michaels said no and that he had close ties with the Grand Marshal and his whole world was the Seuss Tribe. Once Malen heard this speech he instantly picked up his sword and was ready to swing across the captain’s neck at full speed but Phillips stepped right in between them and took the sword away from him. Phillips told Malen to let him go back, he is raising his young sister all by himself and the rest of his family was killed off in the terrible disease outbreak eight alticks ago. His tribe is all he wants and knows, let him go and let’s take in his men. Malen again hesitated but finally agreed to let Michaels go back to the Suess Tribe but also have him be stripped of his armor and weapons and escorted by Frederick Newt who returned from the “Morgan/Newt Run”. Michaels then got up and together with Newt went off to the Suess Tribe while his one hundred soldier search party stayed at the camp to train. 

 

The Convincing Trail Begins

 

On the trail back to the Seuss Tribe, Frederick Newt asked who would make you their captain if you don’t even put up any fight. Gerald Michaels was ashamed of what he and his men did not do back at the camp but kept that to himself. Newt took advantage of this opportunity and told Michaels what the Suess took from him in terms of stripping him from his home and family when he lived as a Kirk and being a prisoner for three alticks at the camp under Suess rule. Newt asked how he will feel when the Suess just randomly throws you into a prison camp for no reason. Right after saying this, ground material supporting their walking, falls from under them and this causes them to fall instantly into a humongous crater hole just inches ahead of them hidden and unnoticed by them. 

 

Back At Camp

 

General Malen assigned his son Aris Malen and Fielder Phillips’ son James Phillips to lead and prepare the team of Captain Michael’s. The search party men rolled their eyes when he came into the training area ready for the drills. The first words out of his mouth were “a girl?” as he looked to the only female in the divided group of thirty three. Malen said he had no idea the Suess would be so kind as to allow girls to participate in anything, especially after what they did to his mother before he and his father were forced to camp. One of the men in the group backed up the girl “Lu Lu is the best fighter in the tribe”. Malen rolled his eyes at the statement “Never heard of a name like that” Malen said. Lu Lu responded “It’s short for Luna.” Aris and James had given them the group their weapons and taught them how to use these weapons. While doing so, Luna lost control of her sword and accidentally cut her hand. Luna did not yell, scream or cry and no one noticed she had cut herself except James who took her aside and gave her a sample of a special wrap he found for containing blood. She was grateful but James went away before she could thank him.

 

In The Weird Crater

 

“What the hell is this?” Newt asked Michaels, holding a sample of the mysterious material in his hands and presenting it to him. The material was white in color with grass covering it all around. The two men had attempted repeatedly to get each other out of the crater hole in which they had fallen into but continued to be unsuccessful. “Help! Somebody! Anybody help us!” Newt screamed. “Save us!” Michaels shouted back. “Your guys will come searching for us, just give it some time.” “But what if your guys find us first? I’ll be killed!” Newt explained. Newt kept complaining about how hungry he was and felt like he was on the verge of death but Michaels just saw this as overly dramatic. “Life isn’t always going to go your way, you know? The world won’t feed you whenever you’re hungry or save you whenever you’re in danger, you idiot.” Michaels explained. “You don’t have the friends I do, they never let each other suffer. I wouldn’t expect a Suess to understand.” Newt responded. “You’re right! Okay? I wouldn’t understand! Because I don’t know you and what you’ve seen and you don’t know what I’ve seen. I was forced to watch my family fall dead and now I only have my sister. Do not tell me what I do or don’t have! Ever!” The now fired up but angered Michaels gets up. “So stop talking and let’s figure out how to get out of here.” Michaels said. Newt said they had tried everything and demanded they could never get out. Michaels looked around the small crater and thought maybe let’s dig our way to the top. “Let’s start by facing one of these sides and slowly dig upward to form a sort of staircase out of dirt.” “All the dirt will probably just collapse on us.” Said Newt. “Even I know that.” “Not if we go slowly and dig low and work our way up, now come on let’s just try.” Michaels said. The eager but scared Newt agreed and the two slowly tried to make a small staircase out of dirt.

 

Advised

 

Mitchell Kennelly asked from outside General Malen’s tent “General may I enter” Malen responded. “Come on in. So what did your group find out? Any Suess out there? Malen had sent Kennelly and a group to see if they spotted any Suess soldiers around the camp. “No Suess Tribe members spotted, sir.” Kennelly responded. “They are coming, it’s only a matter of time.” Malen explained. Kennelly said “However, General uhh…” Malen interrupts “Just call me Leo, alright? Just like you’ve always done before.” Kennelly continues “Yes, General uhh sir ugh I mean Leo, the team and I had spotted Kirk Tribe members close to the Gibi Valley and we wanted to know if you’d like for us to engage them sir.” Malen exploded and pounded his fist. “I want those traitors sent to me personally! Is this understood?” “Sir yes sir, General!” Kennelly shouted while Malen rolled his eyes and sat back on his bed. As Kennelly came out of the General’s tent; Christipher Phillips, who was eavesdropping the conversation with his son James and told him to go wait for him back at their tent, stormed into the tent. “What the hell are you thinking? We’re just going to take some random Kirks because one crazy guy said so? Why don’t we just take them in and train on our side like we did with the Suess team?” In Malen’s response “Well that one crazy guy is general and no one else is!” Phillips then turns around and heads back outside only for Malen to reach on his bed and pick up his sword and sped behind Phillips not before whispering “I’ve put up with your shit for way too long.” and took his life in one forward stroke into his fielder’s back in front of everyone. Malen shouts in front of everyone “This is what happens when you turn your back on your family! This man was a joke, but this guy, as Malen waves Kennelly back over to the square before he goes off on his quest, is anything but. Let’s welcome our new fielder, Mitchell Kennelly.” James peaked through his tent to see what was happening then went back inside and wept. As midnight approached that same day, James made a beeline into the wilderness alone.

 


Submitted: July 24, 2021

© Copyright 2021 Andybaer. All rights reserved.

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