Saturday, December 26, 2015

Threat of the Fire Demon - Chapter 6

Saul stopped and pulled his water bag from his pack. He took a sip and passed it to Charles. Charles drank deeply. The heat was affecting him far more than it was Saul. They had changed places in their misery. The cat was from here. His fur was insulation against the heat, his large paws kept his weight distributed over the sand, so he did not sink in with every step. His large ears caught the cooling breeze, and the movement of game, which he caught and shared the vital fluids of with his friend. Charles had none of these life saving gifts and the sun beat down on him relentlessly hour after hour.

The landscape was sand dotted with boulders ranging in size from a goat cart to a large, multi-passenger wagon. There was no vegetation in site taller than knee high and it was all dry and lifeless looking. The area seemed to be populated by lizards, mice and snakes.

“How did your people ever live here?” Charles croaked out.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Threat of the Fire Demon - Chapter 5

Sleep was uncomfortable that night. The rock was warm at first from the day of exposure to the sun, but it soon cooled. As the evening breeze rose it became first chilly and then downright cold. They found a ledge to huddle under, but nothing grew on the rock to put to a flame, so Charles huddled up as tight as he could in his cloak and wished he had a fur coat like Saul’s.

It was a long time before Charles joined Saul in sleep. He sat quietly scribbling notes in his journal of the area they passed through thus far. Eventually, sleep did overtake him in spite of the cold.

Morning found them both equally stiff from sleeping on the hard rock shelf. It took them more than an hour to determine their position and where they needed to go to get to the next gate, based on Remy’s map.

They scaled the rock bluffs one by one. Like a giant stack of offset cards, there were ledges that ran back and forth up the height and length of the hills. The two travelers zigzagged their way up toward the next gate.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Threat of the Fire Demon - Chapter 4

Charles and Saul headed south along the border where The Realms and the mundane world met. On occasion something would startle them, like the ghost image of a car flashing by or a pedestrian passing so close to the barrier they could reach out and touch them.

“It’s here, to the left,” Charles said, as he stopped to study the map Remy gave them in more detail. “Through those two trees and then two steps to the right,” Charles pointed.

When they emerged from the first gate they were in a field of tall amber tipped grass. The grass was so tall neither could see over it.

“We are supposed to proceed toward the hills,” Charles said, looking at the map. “Can you see any hills?”

Saul who was a good six inches shorter than Charles snorted in derision. “What do you think?” He folded his arms across his chest. “What can you see?”

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Threat of the Fire Demon - Chapter 3

The fog was dense early the next morning when Charles shrugged on his pack and prepared to leave. Brela stood on the threshold outside, her small hooves clacking on the threshold as she danced in agitation. She handed him his quiver and bow. He slung them over his shoulder.

“Tell Simone, when she wakes up, that daddy will be back as soon as he can,” Charles instructed.

“I will.” In an emotional moment the little satyr hugged him around the waist. “Be careful,” she mumbled into his chest. “This is not like a hunt in the woods with Saul.”

“Ah, but it might be close,” Saul said, as he emerged out of the fog.

His golden stripped coat was damp from the mist, but his tufted ears were pricked forward in anticipation. He was equipped as usual with his dragon knife and pouch, but he had added a small backpack made of leather and decorated with dangling gryphon feathers. He also had a feather attached to the bottom ring of the five that looped through his left ear.

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