Friday, October 10, 2014

Chapter 4

Phew!
I have not been on here in awhile.
Because of several factors: School, stress, writing, being busy etc.
But....
Here is another chapter!
Wow, I have not been here in awhile.
Hi guys! :)



No pic this time, sorry!





An Unexpected Ally

4



We were brought into a warm living room, with a fire dying in the hearth, giving just enough light to see by. It was a small house, with adjoining rooms and a kitchen. Humble, yet I felt as if I had been here before. It was like an itch on my back that wouldn’t go away, and I couldn’t reach it because it was in the wrong spot.

The dwarf smiled at us, “I’m Kenor, or Mr. Kenor if you like. It is an honor to have you here. I can see that your mother already gave you some bedding.”

We nodded at him, not daring to ask questions, although we were bursting. At least I was.

“Are any of you hungry? Or are you just tired?” He spoke in a hushed tone, as if his family was still sleeping, so I replied in an equally hushed voice, “No thank you sir, I think we are just tired.”

Dis nodded enthusiastically as Frerin yawned.

Mr. Kenor smiled, “Well Dis, I think Sif will be delighted to see you, I’ll have her sleep on the floor if you want the bed.”

My heart beat jumped and stopped all at the same time as my gut clenched. I glanced at Dis and Frerin, who looked as shocked as I felt.

Sif’s house!? Well no wonder it looks so familiar!

“Oh, they didn’t tell you?” Mr. Kenor noticed our shocked faces, “Yes this is Sif’s house and it was part of the plan. We’ll tell you everything tomorrow, but for now, I think you all need rest.”

We all nodded numbly as he walked over to an adjoining door and opened it.

“This is Sif’s house?” Dis glanced up at us.

“I’m so confused....” Frerin groaned.

“We’ll get our answers tomorrow.” I encouraged, “But I think I speak for all of us when I say that we need some sleep.”

“Here, here.” Frerin raised an imaginary glass of wine.

Dis shoved him in the side.

Mr. Kenor walked out of the room carrying a bunch of blankets, followed clumsily by a tired Sif. They set the blankets in a pile in the middle of the living room as we watched, then Mr. Kenor motioned to Dis, “We’ll have the bed all set up for you miss.”

Dis glanced back at us, and I motioned her on, while Frerin stated, “Don’t sleep in too late.”

Dis followed Mr. Kenor into the room. They were quickly followed by Sif, who, still in her nightgown, waved at us before slipping into her room. I didn’t have time to wave back.


So Frerin and I took to the bedding, and had made two almost identically comfy beds by the time Mr. Kenor came back out, shutting the door behind him. He smiled when he saw our progress, “Just call and someone will help if you need anything. Have a good night’s sleep.”

He retreated into his own room, closing the door with a click. It became very quiet as Frerin and I unloaded ourselves from our bags and laid down on our respective beds. I however, slipped the sword Grandfather had given me under the blankets as I pulled them up to my chin.

“Goodnight.” Frerin said.

“Goodnight.”

Yet I couldn't fall asleep. My mind was still reeling with questions and filled with emotions. They will have to wait.

“Thorin?”

“Hm?”

“What did the letter really say?”

“Nothing, go to sleep.” I snapped. Rather harsh, but I didn’t apologize.

The firelight dimmed even more, and we were left in the dark, our breathing the only noise that we could hear.

Like frightened children, we waited for the dawn to break.

Yet somehow hoped that it never would.





















“Thorin.” I knew it was Dis, but I didn’t wake up. I was too tired.

“Hm?”

“Were you trying to strangle yourself last night?”

“Hm.”

“That doesn't help me.”

“Go away.”

“Fine.”

I heard her bare feet padding on the wooden floor then the scrape of a chair. I breathed in deep, letting my lungs expand as substantially as they could before letting it out. For some reason, it felt good. I smelled breakfast, but didn’t bother to get up and have it.

I heard a few whispered comments, then a giggle. Dis.

I sighed and tried getting the blankets over my shoulders again, as they had fallen down to my knees last night. I tried, but found my shirt trying to strangle me, wrapped around my neck twice and cutting off my circulation in one arm. I blindly sat up, not willing to quite open my eyes yet and tried disentangling myself.

I failed miserably and finally opened my eyes, blinking in the sunlight. The house looked much more welcoming when it was light out, and with the windows open. The kitchen had three occupants, Dis, Frerin and a dwarven woman who I knew to be Sif’s mother.

Wait! Sif?!

There was a moment of panic as I tried to figure out where I was, but then the realization dawned on me and I relaxed. Sighing I resumed trying to pull off my strangling shirt again as Dis and Frerin watched.

“I don’t think you should sleep with them on anymore.” Frerin commented, “One day-”

“Well, sometimes I forget.” I retorted, already exasperated with the shirt.

Finally, I had to ask, “Free.....?”

He jumped down from the chair he was sitting on at the table and without a word helped me pry my shirt off. Once it was finally off, I received it back and untangling it, slipped it back on.

“Thank you.”  I mumbled and Frerin nodded, then went back to his chair,

Yawning, I got up and followed his example.

Once I took a seat at the table, Dis laughed, “I‘m glad for your sake that Sif wasn’t here to see that.”

I felt my ears grow warm, but couldn’t find anything witty to say back. My hip began to throb where I had hit it on the side table in Father’s room last night.

Sif’s mother set a plate of breakfast in front of me, which consisted of fried eggs, some warm bread and a slice of meat.

“It’s all we have for now,” She apologized, but I quickly replied, “No, no, it’s great.”

I politely ate while Dis and Frerin watched, apparently having eaten already. After a bit, Sif’s mother looked at us, “I assume that you are all wondering why you are here?”

We all glanced up at her and she laughed at our expressions, “Apparently no one told you much. But last night was very......dangerous, so I suppose no one had the time to tell you anything.”

We all waited anxiously for her to go on, and she did, wiping her hands on her apron, “It’s a small group, we named ourselves the Eldest, although I don’t know why, I didn’t make it up,” she chuckled, “It’s nothing very elaborate or anything, but it’s an organization of dwarves always dedicated to protecting the royal line. There are about three families, one house for the King, one house for your father, and one house for the Princes and Princess,” She smiled at us, “As you have already noticed, we are the house that protects you. Of course, we are only needed in times such as an assassination, nothing more really. Our King was very wise to make the precaution, as you see, it worked out fine.”

We all nodded. She let out a quick breath, then went on, “We were the chosen family because, in the records, we have no ties at all to your line. If anyone was to look for someone in the records that might be sheltering you, they would never find us, and that only makes this safer. The same is true with the other houses. Although they are elderly couples. Another reason that we were picked was because we only have one daughter, allowing more space.”

She finished on a final note and we all nodded. “Thank you.” I managed, and Sif’s mother smiled, “Well, we do what we can.”

Just then, Sif came out of her room, wearing a work dress and a smile.

“Sif, Sif, you should have seen Thorin this morning!” Dis pointed enthusiastically at me, as I groaned and returned to my plate.

“Why?” Sif walked over and leaned her elbows on the table.

“His shirt was trying to strangle him.”

Sif shook her head, her brown hair falling loose from a messy bun, “Why am I not surprised?”

Everyone laughed, and I managed to join. When we were little, many sleepovers had been arranged for friend's birthdays, and in the morning, Dis and Sif would tease me to death about how weird I looked with my poor sleep shirt around my neck like a noose.

It had been funny when I was littler, but now, it was becoming uncomfortable. Although that didn’t stop me from laughing at myself.

After a bit, Sif’s mother gathered a bag and slung a shawl over her shoulders, “I almost forgot to tell you all, we have to leave for the market. Sif is working part time at a herb shop, and we are about to be late. Mr. Kenor already left this morning, and won’t be back for a bit. Please stay inside, some people might be looking for you. I don’t think we will be back for awhile, so get yourselves situated.”

“Bye.” Sif hugged Dis quickly before going out the door with her mother. The door shut with a soft click as they closed it behind them.

Frerin looked confused, “They left really fast.”

“Perhaps they were late.” I shrugged and ate the rest of my breakfast.







The afternoon was quiet and uneventful. We dared not leave the house, but it was brutal tempting. The trees were in full bloom, providing plenty of shade from the warm sun, while a breeze stirred the flowers outside the window.

We finally resigned ourselves to boredom after a while and decided to open up the bags we had brought with us. The papers were dull and there was nothing else interesting, except for the crown, but we didn’t try anything with it. That would be disrespectful.

We had missed most of the afternoon by the time we packed all the bags up and put all the bedding we had slept on back into Sif’s room. We resigned ourselves to talking and reading parts of the book I had brought with me.

Halfway through a chapter, we heard a knock on the door. Father immediately leapt to my mind, but another thought gave me caution. Perhaps it is the assassin.

Clenching the hilt of the sword Grandfather had given me, I edged my way to the door.

“Who is it?” asked Dis quietly.

I shook my head, telling her that I didn’t know.

Finally, Frerin said what had been hanging in my mind, “I don’t think they would knock on their own door.”

My gut clenched, “Free, stay back, hide the bags.”

I heard scrambling behind me as they obeyed me without question. I reached to door and listened. There was nothing else. I didn’t dare look out the window. Do they have the house surrounded?

“Thorin, Thorin wait.” The fear in Dis’s voice was evident, “What if he has a bow?”

I took in a sharp breath, but said nothing.

There was another knock, more fainter and lower down on the door. I stiffened. What are they doing? Bracing myself, I hefted the sword and reached for the door handle.

“Thorin.....” Frerin’s voice

I licked my lips, “Be prepared to hide.” I commanded.

Then opened the door with a swift motion.

I barely had time to catch Sif as she slid to the ground, the door no longer supporting her weight. Shoving the sword under my arm, ignoring the rules of safety, I grabbed her. Sif’s light form fell against me. My heart beat doubled as I saw the blood, “Sif.....Sif!”

“I’m...I’m sorry.” her voice was faint. Words were stuck in my throat. She’s injured. She’s injured. Dragon’s talons she’s dying.

“Free! Dis!” I finally choked out.

They came at once.

“Sif!” Shrieked Dis once she saw her friend.

“Help me get her inside.” I commanded Frerin, then we both gently, yet awkwardly carried her in. Dis shut the door behind us as we laid her down on the floor.

“Stop the bleeding, we have to stop it.” I was shaking uncontrollably and I didn’t know why. I saw Tears in Dis’s eyes as she ripped off the table cloth from the table and pressed it to where the blood stain was. The blood came from her right side, although it was everywhere, so I couldn't tell where the wound was.

“You have to get out....” Sif whispered, “He saw me....”

“Sif, Don’t hurt yourself.” Dis interrupted, a tear slipping down her face, which she angrily wiped away.

“No, we have to get out...now.” Sif’s voice became stronger, “He saw me go in here...he’ll be back with more....” She winced.

“We shouldn’t move her.” Frerin looked worried, “She has already lost too much blood.”

Sif shook her head weakly, “You have to. I know I’m hurt....I can’t think straight, just you have to get out. They found-” She clutched her side, “Ow.”

I glanced at Frerin and Dis, who both looked up at me. I had to make a decision, and fast.

“Where do you think we should go?” I asked Sif. She bit her lip, “The river.”

I nodded at Dis and Frerin, “Gather everything, quickly, we’ll make a stretcher and-”

“No.” Sif gripped my arm, “No you don’t have time to make one. I’ll walk. I know I can try.”

I glanced at Dis and Frerin, who immediately jumped to their feet and started gathering everything. I looked back down at Sif, and gathering more of the table cloth, pressed it to her side. The blood soaked everything in an instant.

“Anything of importance that we need to bring with us?” I asked Sif.

She shook her head, “No. We just need to get out.”

“Are you sure?”

She nodded, a bit weaker this time. I bit my lip and looked up at my siblings, who were almost ready. “Leave the blankets.” I commanded Dis, and she dropped all of them in a moment at my harsh tone. She then hurried over to me and crouched down next to Sif, “How are we going to get her out?” Dis’s voice was choked.

I looked back down at Sif who murmured, “I can walk if you just support me.”

I shook my head, “I’ll carry her. Ready?” I glanced back up at Dis, who nodded.

“Free?” I called, and he came out of the main bedroom, shoving a bunch of papers into his bag, “I’m ready.”

I handed him the sword, hilt first, “Take this, keep it unsheathed.”

Frerin nodded and took the sword, paling a bit. My gut tying itself into knots, I looked back down at Sif and clenched my jaw, “Sif, you have to keep the tablecloth hard onto your side alright? We need to slow the bleeding.”

She nodded and braced herself. Feeling my heart-beat triple, I gently slipped my arms under her, and as she clenched the table cloth to her side, lifted her off the ground. It took a few tries before I finally lifted her completely, and stood, bracing my arms, which were already aching.

Frerin nodded at me, “Got her?”

I nodded back, “Open the door.”

Dis and Frerin quickly walked to the door and Frerin opened it, then making sure the road was clear, ushered us on. Dis closed the door behind me and together, we crossed the street, Frerin watching for assassins, Me making sure Sif wouldn’t fall, and Dis hauling around a few extra bags.

It became obvious very quickly that every move of mine hurt Sif’s side. She tried not to show it, but gritted her teeth and gripped me harder and harder every step. I tightened my grip on her even more, although my arms were screaming for relief, and my legs rebelled to move a step further.

When we were almost to the river, Sif seemed to notice the table cloth for the first time. She sighed and lifted up the edge of the tablecloth, “Oh, this was mum’s favorite.”

I grimaced, “But it might just as well save your life.”



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6 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Really? Thank you! ^.^ I'm glad you enjoyed it!

      Delete
  2. Oh goodness. This is great! I can't wait for the next chapter! This is one of my favorite chapters. :D

    -Hope

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi Saphira!
    It's me again. :D
    I nominated you for the 12 Days of Thanksgiving Challenge. {Sorry it's a little late. :D} Anyway, here's the link on my blog if you'd like to check it out:
    http://www.stitchesoffreedom.com/12-days-of-thanksgiving-hope-oakenshield/

    -Hope

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh thanks Hope! I saw that on your blog, but I was busy. Thanks! :)

      Delete

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