Dragon Fire: Episode 19

The next morning, Terrin and Razham followed Brius as he led them to Barrow’s Crossing and the home of Olds. Vanamir would meet them there upon his return. Olds’ farm was on a large strip of cultivated land. As Brius, Razham and Terrin trudged up to the large farmhouse, they saw wheat and vegetables being loaded onto carts. An older man walked out of the house, and spotting Brius smiled.

“What brings you to these parts, old man,” he asked.

With a firm handshake of greeting, Brius said,

“My cart was destroyed, and I need some help so that I may get a new one.”

“Destroyed?” Olds asked. “How did that happen?”

“It is of no importance. I thought we might join your caravan heading south to Rockhurst,” Brius said.

“You are a little old for a trek through Grape’s Hollow, my friend,” Olds teased.

“I will decide what I might or might not be too old for,” Brius complained.

“Well then, welcome,” Old said with a sweeping of his hand. “We leave tomorrow at dawn.”

 

*                *                *

 

As the day was dying and the night sounds filled the air, Terrin, Brius, and Razham settled into a cabin on the outskirts of town to rest for the next day’s journey through Grape’s Hollow.

“Where is Vanamir?’ Terrin asked as they sat around the table working on supper.

Brius and Razham gave each other a guarded look then Razham said,

“He went to get help from a friend.”

“But the caravan leaves in the morning. Will he return in time?” Terrin asked.

Suddenly the door opened, and Vanamir walked in, a broad smile on his face. He came up to the table and sat down.

“Was your journey a good one?” Brius asked.

“My friend could offer no help, but I did enjoy fine ale and company,” Vanamir smirked.

 

“Brius knows someone who will let us help with a delivery south to Rockhurst,” Terrin said enthusiastically.

Vanamir paused then quickly reclaimed his smile.

“That is indeed good fortune,” he said.

Raising his head from his work, Terrin looked at Vanamir.

“Could you help me prepare for tomorrow’s journey,” he asked.

“What do you need, boy?” Vanamir answered.

“I thought I would be more useful if I knew archery,” Terrin explained.

“You would like me to teach you?” Vanamir asked.

“Yes, if you will,” Terrin said.

“After supper, we will see,” Vanamir smiled.

 

*              *                *

Terrin had fired off several shots with Vanamir’s bow, each a miss, and he was growing frustrated.

“You must remain calm and focus,” Vanamir instructed.

“I am trying,” Terrin said closing his eyes, “but it is hot here.”

From the woods came a deep bellow. Terrin and Vanamir whirled around toward the sound. Suddenly a large humanoid creature with a horse’s head burst through the trees toward them. Running along on large black hooves, it stood over twenty feet tall. With its hands balled into fists and arms pumping, a deep roar came from its snout as it charged.

“What is that?” Terrin yelled.

“I do not know, but we must get inside,” Vanamir said.

Terrin’s face flushed, and his body felt on fire.

Vanamir had run a few yards before he realized that Terrin stood motionless.

“Come on!” he shouted.

“My legs will not move!” Terrin answered.

Vanamir ran back to Terrin and grabbed his arm but quickly let go, pulling his hand away.

“Your skin feels like fire,” Vanamir said.

As the creature drew closer, it roared louder until it was almost on top of them.

“You must shoot it,” Vanamir yelled.

“I will miss. Take the bow,” Terrin insisted.

“I cannot get close to you. The heat,” Vanamir said. “Throw the bow to me.”

“My hand will not release it,” Terrin yelled.

Hearing the noise of the beast, Razham and Brius flung open the back door.

“Get inside now,” Brius ordered.

“He cannot move his legs,” Vanamir yelled.

Razham raised his staff and charged the creature.

“No!” Terrin yelled.

Desperate, Terrin knew he had to do something. If he could land an arrow near the beast, it might throw it off.

As he focused on the creature, he suddenly felt a flash of heat surge up over his body and into his arms. Before he could properly aim, he shot the arrow, a flame moving down its shaft as it soared through the air.

The arrow flew through the wheat field, setting the stalks on fire. Zipping past Razham, it struck the creature in the chest throwing it backwards and exploding it in a ball of fire. Razham slid to a stop as the creature writhed in pain. With its last breath, the burning creature stumbled backwards and was consumed by the flames.

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Published in: on August 6, 2011 at 7:32 am  Leave a Comment  

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