A couple of weeks ago, I signed up for the Rule Of Three Blogfest. Each Wednesday in October, I, and the other participants, will post a portion of a story set in a shared world called Renaissance. Other than the shared world, there are only a couple of other rules: there must be 3 characters, there is a 500 word limit for each part, each week’s entry must be based on one of several writing prompts from the organizers, and the entries go up each Wednesday or Thursday.
This week, participants were given the following prompts to choose from:
There is an argument
There is fear of an impending misfortune
There is a humorous circumstance
Someone might fall in love
I selected “There is fear of an impending misfortune”.
Hope you enjoy the story!
An odd, dark cloud formation hung in the sky north of Renaissance, entirely obliterating view of the far-off Rondeli Mountains. Even the Major and Minor Gauches were just dark blots in the distance.
Eriahne hurried to dig the last few spindly turnips, anxious to get inside. Raising the alarmingly light hand-woven basket to her hip, she darted across the barren, rocky field, as a rising wind plastered her threadbare dress against her body. The coming winter would be lean if she didn’t manage to find more to add to their meager stock of root vegetables.
If only her father didn’t sell everything she tried to save, just for a few coins to trade for the poison swill they served at the Post. Whether the drink would kill him before his sorrow over her mother’s death did was anyone’s guess.
At the door of the little shack she shared with her father, she turned for one last look at the clouds. Closer and darker, fleeting images of strange beasts roiled within the pall. Eriahne’s breath froze in her chest, as she recalled the legend of a dark fog rising from the Rondelis, to carry evil across the land. With no time to worry about what might come, she wrestled the door closed.
Hanging the dented cook pot over the fire to boil, she added the greens she’d found growing in the lee of a boulder. They were the last before the cold set in, and would be bitter and tough, but they would have to do. At least the old man never complained about the food. When he bothered to speak, it was to urge her to accept Londehen’s proposal of marriage. Her skin crawled at the thought of the constable’s hands upon her. No.
A horse blew just outside.
Eriahne straightened too quickly, bashing the top of her head against a flimsy roof support. Checking for blood with one hand, she turned to look through the wide gap at the edge of the door, carefully keeping out of sight.
A huge, sleek horse stamped and blew again. A tall man stood at the beast’s side, loosening straps and taking things off. With a pat to its shoulder, he slung a sort of pack over his muscular arm, and dangled a brace of rabbits from one hand.
“Hello? Anyone home?” He approached the door with what looked like caution. “Hello?”
Holding her precious steel dagger hidden in the folds of her skirt, Eriahne pushed through the door.
The man swept his hat off, revealing a handsome face. “I wondered if I and my horse could shelter in your shed for the night. The storm coming looks bad.”
“My name is Eriahne. I don’t see how the beast can fit, but you’re welcome to try. The house isn’t much better, but there’s a fire, if you’d like to rest inside.” Despite the danger, the law was clear. A stranger couldn’t be turned away. “I’m sorry we don’t have food enough to share.”
“I’m Teguere. If you don’t mind cooking, I have plenty.” He grinned and held the brace of rabbits toward her.
Eriahne tried to stifle the rumbling of her stomach as she took the rabbits. She couldn’t remember the last time she’d tasted meat.
- The Rule of Three is Here! (damyantiwrites.wordpress.com)