|Camelot: The Amethyst Hallow
Author: Leonor 'Ner PM
Nerys is saved by King Arthur and his knights while running away from two pursuers. Taking her to Camelot, Nerys soon try to live a normal life until her past haunts her. Still being written so the story isn't all planned yet.Rated: Fiction T - English - Fantasy/Romance - Kay & Arthur P. - Words: 2,109 - Reviews: 7 - Favs: 6 - Follows: 5 - Published: 06-19-12 - id: 8235240
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Camelot – The Amethyst Hallow
Chapter: 1 – Running Through the Dark Forest
The moon rose higher and higher in the sky whilst the shadow grew deep in the dense forest. The calm silence was soon disturbed by desperate yields, quick footsteps and heavy breaths. On the long and used trail, two figures ran with their swords raised in their big, strong hands while their eyes peered into all they could see around them. Further on the road, another figure ran away, clutching to something with all her might while she sneaked behind her shoulder once in a while. Nerys feared her persecutors would catch her and she would shiver with the thought of what they could do to her if that happened. Filling her lungs with the humid air of the night, she accelerated her step, getting as far away from the trail as she could and letting herself get lost in the shadows of the old forest.
Several roots seemed to arise from thin air, entangling her feet and ankles, almost knocking her down in the path. Nerys contained a scream when she stopped brusquely in front of an old and bulky tree, the illusion of a super-human monster jolting her. The loud pace of her two persecutors and their several swears while cutting down the branches in their way, soon woke her up from her petrified trance. She shook her head noticing that her panic made her see things where they didn't existed. Resuming her path, she began running with no destiny through the forest, the nocturnal sounds her only company.
Reaching an opening in the forest illuminated by the moonlight, she tried to decipher which course to take. Wherever she looked, darkness was at sight and the sounds of the night weren't that appealing to her. Turning on her wheels, she chose a random path, hoping it would be enough to lose her pursuers; even if for a little while.
Diving into the overwhelming darkness once again without moonlight, she resumed her unbridled running knowing that her clumsy and loud footsteps would soon give away her location. She heard them screaming just a few yards from her. Nerys followed her instinct when she reached a bifurcation and, turning left, looked over her shoulder for a brief moment. No –one was after her; at least no-one she could see in the few feet still visible. She felt a slight hope blooming, enough to give her the impulse to run even faster and with a new vigour.
Returning her eyes to the trail ahead of her, she hit something and, waiting to feel the rough dirt on her back, she was surprised – as well as scared – when some callused hands caught her. As soon as she felt cornered, she tried to loosen herself and fought for a few instants. The package she was protecting with all her heart fell to the floor and a cold terror spread throughout Nerys body. Without looking at her captor, she kept fighting to get free until a hand covered her mouth. She was obliged to look into the eyes of the person who has captured her.
"Be quiet..:" the stranger before her whispered with a finger on his lips, signalling her to be silent. When Nerys raised her eyebrow and didn't move, he took his hand and placed his arms raised in front of him. Nerys noticed he had a sword on his waist and when he followed her alarming gaze, he took his sheath and threw it to his side. "I mean you no harm."
The sound of her persecutors behind her made Nerys turn hurriedly with a cry of terror stuck on her throat. With a quick movement, the stranger grabbed her arm and placed her behind him in a protective manner. Nerys saw the sword on his hand and, somehow, thanked the fact that he had been quick enough to retrieve it before her pursuers arrived.
In a blink of an eye, they appeared from the shadows and Nerys froze on her place, gazing at those two powerful and intimidating figures. When they've noticed the stranger, their rough features hardened and Nerys saw how firmly they clutched to their own swords.
"That girl is a thief" said one of the men, a bald and corpulent one who spitted rudely to the floor. "She has something that belongs to us."
"I believe it is unfair for two men to chase after an unarmed young girl, don't you think?" answered the stranger with a strong and confident voice which made the two men close their jaw tightly.
"Why don't you mind your own business, boy? You don't know the danger that girl is!" affirmed the other man pointing his sword towards Nerys who shrunk behind her rescuer. "It's better for you to step aside and let us deal with it."
"I think I won't!" the young saviour answered back, straightening his back in a way that gave Nerys the impression he was taller than before and grandiose. "Whatever she stole, I'll pay back twice the price."
Time seemed to come to a stop while the men looked at the stranger with their eyebrows raised and thought over the offer. Nerys looked from the corner of her eye to the package still on the floor. To her pursuers, the package wasn't that valuable. They would eventually sell it by an inferior price to what it's worth. Even what the stranger was proposing wasn't enough to pay for it. But for her, it was beyond any money in the kingdom. It was an heirloom and the only thing she had left of her family. She wouldn't trade it for anything in the world.
Nerys thought she saw something smoothly moving in the shadows but feared looking. A rustling noise was audible but it seemed to go unnoticed by the two persecutors. She shivered, her whole body trembling. When the two men looked at each other and began whispering between each other, she felt a hand squeeze her left arm and Nerys understood the silent meaning of that squeeze. She looked up at her saviour, who was still watching the other two men, and relaxed a bit.
"What that thief stole from us cannot be replaced just like that" said the bald man in a hoarse voice but with a glimpse of greed in his eyes. "It has... a sentimental valour to us."
"Besides, we want justice" added the other man. "She stole us in our camp during the night when we were unprepared."
"Maybe you should have been paying more attention." said the stranger and, somehow, Nerys knew he was smiling.
Nerys felt a shift in the air. The bald man's face turned red and he was only able to raise his sword when a strong man appeared from the shadows as fast as lightning. He placed his sword on her pursuer's throat that was taken aback by his sudden appearance and dropped his sword. The other pursuer was steadying himself to fight back when was hit in the chin by another strong nocturnal warrior who also appeared out of thin air. A third man, this one blond and with a majestic posture, came out of the shadows with a slow and careful pace, his eyes fixed on the persecutors.
Nerys caught her breath and, unconsciously, placed her hand on her saviour's arm. She felt his hand squeeze her fingers and he stood by her side, his sword still raised and pointing to the two men who seemed suddenly struck
"Yes, you should have been paying more attention" said the blond man closing the gap between him and his prey.
With his back turned on Nerys, he seemed to be crowned by the magnificent light from the moon.
"You don't know what you're doing by protecting her" said the bald man. "You're protecting a thief and… and a murderess..."
"Silence!" said the warrior whose sword was at his throat. A small line of blood appeared, running through his throat whilst his breathing accelerated.
Nerys felt as if she would faint with his words. She could even be a thief but she was no murderess. At least not in her eyes since the only life she took was to save her own. Still, his word resounded in her brain, making her dizzy while she saw the blond man getting even closer to the two men.
"Innocent until proved otherwise" exclaimed the blond man calmly. "We'll pay what she stole from you…"
"… five times as much and you'll still live. Does it seem fair to you?"
The men exchanged silent glances between them and the man who had fallen due to the punch he received, scanned Nerys with unrelenting eyes. Nerys held the gaze and couldn't breathe for a few seconds before her heart began racing on her chest. She couldn't decipher the silent message in those deep eyes. However, he looked away and waved his head while cleaning the blood from his chin with his sleeve before answering:
"We'll take it" he said trying to stand up but stopping short with a blade in front of him. "And we'll leave the girl alone."
"Very well" the blond man smiled and turned to Nerys and her saviour."Kay, pass me the coins."
Kay extracted something from his belt and threw it to his friend, the coins flying through the air and being catch by strong and gloved hands. A silent hope soon took over her body and it shivered without stopping, not from fear but with a sudden energy that made her blood boil in her veins. The past unfolded before her eyes in uncertain fragments and the future, which once upon a time was completely dark and unknown, brightened up in the most palpable way.
"There you have it lads… your golden coins" said the blond man giving the money to the bald one. "I hope never to see you again on my kingdom. If I do, well, expect the worst."
The forest petrified with those words and Nerys saw her pursuers open their eyes wide with fear and understanding. But they didn't open their mouths and as soon as they were free from the blades, they fled from that spot.
For a few moments no-one moved and only when Nerys buried her knees on the ground and picked up her package and began crying, did the three new warriors observed her with interest. Kay knelt by her side and with a trembling a hesitant hand, took her hair from her wet face and eyes.
"Are you hurt?" he asked in a calm and low murmur. Nerys answered negatively with her head, clutching her package with even more strength against her breast."Here, drink some water."
Taking the water from Kay's canteen, Nerys observed through her tears her rescuers to whom she was thankful for having saved her.
"Thank you…" she said with her voice low and chocked by tears.
The king knelt near her and gave her his cape which she would decline if his eyes weren't so sweet and worried. For another moment no-one spoke. The two big warriors were watching the scene in a safe distance, their swords raised and ready at their hands.
"Come" said Kay breaking the silence and straightening his backs but staying by Nerys'. "It's cold and you look pale and exhausted. We have a camp nearby where you can rest and eat something before the dawn."
Nerys looked blindly around her. She didn't noticed time flying by and the moon was almost hid by the hills and the sun was soon in the sky. She suddenly felt tired, heavy, and numb.
Accepting Kay's help, she stood up heavily and fixed her eyes on the king. With a wave of his head she understood that explanations could wait when she had some rest.
Moving her feet, all her body seemed to free the negative energy and she soon lost her balance and was caught again by Kay. This time her strength had vanished with the extreme tiredness which was beginning to take over her and it didn't let her move. With a rapid and strong move, Kay took her in his arms and with a signal of his head towards the king and the warriors, they headed for the darkness of the forest which soon placed Nerys under a trance and she soon fell asleep.
Next Chapter - still being written!