A Family in Distress
The path turned from dust to stone as we came to an overhang. The fields of vine and Ling were dissipating, having been crushed over time by pebbles and stones from the mountainside. Lynnie and I had been walking for quite some time, and the sun had started to fill the now barren valley with extravagant colors. I looked beyond the overhang only to find more barren landscape, and a crossroad in the path leading in opposite directions.
"Where are we going?" I really had no place to be, but curiosity had taken over.
Lyn paused for a moment, looking through the passage in the mountain. "My village;" We're going to her village? I thought there was only one on the island. "The original settlers of Luthanon are considered to be fugitives and refugees. We were forced to the back of the island, away from the main port, to help the island keep the image of the legend."
I hadn't even asked her anything, yet she replied like she already knew. "I'm sorry to hear that, it's a terrible thing for them to do."
She turned to me and smiled. "It's not so bad, really it isn't. There's not many of us left, but the people back home are the nicest people you'll ever meet. Come on, we're almost there!"
Nothing ever brought her spirits down, did it? She could bring you out of a slump in a real hurry as well. Her bright smile, those auburn eyes; if that couldn't cheer you up, nothing could. I looked down at the ground, and noticed one lonely Ling growing in between the stones. It made me think of Lyn, and how she seemed to fight to keep happy and high-spirited.
A shout across the valley echoed, and as I looked up I saw Lyn waving and jumping excitedly from the other end of the canyon. When did she get so far away? I carefully picked up the Ling, stored it with my other belongings, and took off down the path to catch up with Lyn. I couldn't help but think that this was the beginning of something special.
As we came to a clearing in the mountains, I saw several small huts come into view. They didn't look anything like the houses I had seen near the port. The walls weren't made of the colored tiles, but instead were made from the same materials as the roofs. The entire hut was made from this thatching material actually, and it slightly depressed me to know that Lynnie was forced to live in these small huts instead of those beautiful homes.
I followed her to the farthest hut and she knocked on the door before entering. "Grandma, I'm home!"
A short, plump woman came through the farthest door, which seemed to lead to the kitchen.
"Lyn my child, where have you been? You were gone all night and left no note telling me where you had gone, I was so worried about you!"
"I'm sorry grandma, but it wasn't my fault. I was attacked by wild dogs, and if Trist here hadn't helped me;"
"O my, I didn't even see you there. Are you hungry? You look tired, why don't you come have a seat and I'll fix you something right away." She hobbled off into the kitchen to prepare some food, leaving me and Lyn alone.
"Thanks a lot grandma, I'm so glad you care about me." She went and sat at a table, and invited me to join her. "So what do you think? They're small and not very stable, but they're home."
"I hate to say this Lyn, but they're terrible! How can you live in such a place when there are beautifully constructed houses and taverns on the other side of this mountain?" I hadn't realized it but my voice was raised, and Lyn's grandma came out of the kitchen with some sandwiches and drinks.
"We've tried to fight it;"
Her voice startled me, and I jumped accidentally knocking over one of the drinks.
"Lyn, why don't you go get changed, you look awful. I'll entertain your friend while you're gone." She got up and went into one of the rooms off to the side, sliding a curtain across to act as a door.
"What are you planning on doing with my sweet, innocent Lyn?" Her voice changed from a sweet gentle lady to one of those detectives interrogating a criminal. "If you lay so much as a finger on her, I'll snap you in half and feed you to the vultures. Now then, would you like a sandwich? They're PB & J."
I gulped and reached out for a sandwich, but was interrupted by Lyn's grandma. "Don't forget your drink!" She picked up the fallen glass and went back into the kitchen, just as Lyn came out of her room.
She had changed into a dark blue shirt and matching skirt, which made her look even more amazing. That blue hair, the blue ensemble, and her auburn eyes all combined to make the most beautiful girl I'd ever seen.
"You look amazing you know;" I was entranced by her beauty, but it wasn't long lived. Her grandmother came out of the kitchen in a flurry of emotions.
"What's wrong grandma? What happened?" Lyn seemed extremely worried about her grandma. I guess she wasn't the emotional type.
"It's horrible, just horrible. Your father sent a message. If he doesn't get help soon, he's going to die."
Lyn looked down at the floor, and I caught a glimpse of light as it shone off of the tears that now fell from her eyes. "I'll go help him then." It was sudden, and her face had gone from sad to determined almost instantly.
"You can't go alone my child, it's too dangerous."
Now I was really confused. Where did her father live? I'd figured they would at least be on the same island. Maybe she was just stressing about the dogs that attacked Lynnie earlier.
"Don't worry grandma; I'll have Trist with me, right?" She smiled and looked over at me, and her beauty and charm won me over.
"Of course I'll go with you; I've got nothing better to do anyways."
Her grandma ran over to me and gave me a big hug, then whispered in my ear. "If anything happens to her, I'll break your neck and cook you up for dinner;"
That lady was a force to be reckoned with, and the sooner we left the better. Lyn ran into her room to gather a few things, and then we set off down the dusty trail once more, heading back to the main town in which I was now considered a fugitive.
"There it is. We'll have to find a way to sneak onto a boat."
We were hiding in the field just outside of the main village on Luthanon. Scanning for guards, Lyn looked at me with a face that showed both excitement and determination.
"We can always sneak onto the Plokstanis." It came into port every two days to bring supplies; at least that's what I overheard. "I know the captain; he'll help us as long as we pull our weight on the ship."
"It sounds like a plan, now we just have to get to the docks and stay hidden until the Plokstanis arrives." Before I knew what was happening she had taken off into the middle of the street.
"What are you, nuts?" I ran to catch up to her. "We're going to get caught like this, your crazy!"
"The trick is to blend in." She paused at one of the shops. "If you keep on looking suspicious like that we're bound to get caught." Then it happened. The keep from the pub walked by us on his way to work.
"GUARDS! GUARDS! I'VE FOUND THE THIEF!"
Before I could react Lyn grabbed my arm and pulled me down one of the side streets and into an alleyway. We waited for a few seconds, and three guards ran past us.
"Now, before they turn around and search this alley, GO!" She pushed me out of the alley towards the main port, and then followed closely behind. We just barely got underneath the dock when the Plokstanis docked and guards flooded around it. We stayed silent and listened to the conversation above.
"Excuse me, but we need to search your boat for a couple of fugitives."
"But I've just docked, who could possibly be on my boat that you're looking for?"
"Well, were stationing guards at the entrance to your boat. We can't let them escape."
Crap. What were we going to do now? We sat and thought of a way to get onto the Plokstanis.
"I know! I'll go talk to one of the crewmen whilst they deliver the barrels, and get him to hide us in the empty ones!" It was brilliant, I should know, I thought of it. Lyn agreed since she could not come up with anything of her own, and we set out from the other side of the dock to the merchant square.
We arrived at the square, and hid in the bushes closest to the mountain. By sheer fluke, a crewman of the Plokstanis was taking a break right beside us.
"Psst. Over here in the bushes." The guy looked around then came closer to us. "It's me, from before. Listen, I need a favor. Could you hide me and my friend in those empty barrels of yours and smuggle us onto the ship? We have to get off this island but the guards are after us."
"Well, I don't see why not. You caused us no harm last time, and I'm sure the captain won't mind. Quick, hop in."
We did it; we were on our way to the mainland to go help Lyn's father, wherever he might be. That is, as long as we didn't get caught we were on our way. I closed my eyes and prayed for the barrels to stop moving and the crewman to let us out on the moving boat.
Before I knew it, Lynnie was helping me out of my barrel. We sat down in the cargo hold and she told me of her father.
"He lives in Koran. It's a great city not too far from port. He left Luthanon years ago to try and find a better life for me and my family, but this is the first time we've heard from him."
I reached over and grabbed her hand, holding it gently in mine. She smiled at me and moved closer, leaning on my chest. It was comforting not just for her, but for me as well.
"I'm glad you're coming with me Trist. I don't think I'd be able to walk that far on my own."
She closed her eyes and started to dose off, still clasping my hand the entire time. I played with her hair and thought of the first time I saw her. She was beautiful then, but back then it was only on the outside. Now I was starting to see her inner beauty.
I couldn't help but fall asleep with her in my arms. I felt safe, warm, and happy; all the things a man should feel when he's with a woman like Lynnie.
I was falling in love, and I hoped that Lynnie was falling in love as well.
I hope you enjoyed the second chapter. There really wasn't much planned for this chapter so i struggled to get as much as i did into it.
The next chapter should be a bit bigger, and hopefully more entertaining. Thanks for any feedback