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Outcast (Part 2)

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I didn’t see him until he had his hand around my neck. All I had been doing was cutting fresh ferns for my bed. He had a powerful grip. I felt my feet leave the ground.

“Why are you here?” he growled.

I made an odd gurgling sound.

He must have realized that he was choking me, because he let go and I fell to the ground. I lay there coughing. He reached into a pouch hanging from a chain around his neck and pulled out a small leaf and put it into my mouth. It had a bitter taste and dissolved quickly, but whatever it was helped me stop choking and I stated gulping in huge breaths. But it must have been a sleeping drug because I quickly fell into an inky darkness.


When I woke up, I was in a cave. I had never been in one before, because we had no mountains where I lived, but I had read about them. This particular one had diamonds studding the roof and gold fleck in the wall. I heard movement to my left. I looked over and was the mysterious person had come in. He wasn’t paying any attention to me as he began stacking the firewood he had just brought in. I took advantage of that and studied him. He looked to be a year older than me. His hair was a sandy color. He was muscular, but not like a wrestler, more like a cat, and had a thin white scar on his left cheek. He turned and I blushed at having been caught staring.

“Where am I?” I whispered.

“In my home?” he replied.

I frowned.

“Why were you there?”

“Where?”

“In the Sacred Ferns.”

“I didn’t know they were sacred. Who are you?”

“I am Moondancer.”

“Why were the ferns sacred?”

“That is where my family was killed?”

“I’m sorry.”

“Did you help in their murder?”

“No.” I swallowed the lump in my throat.”

“Then do not be sorry.”

“Are you a Moon Holder?”

“Yes?”

“Why am I here?”

“Because I could not let you go back to your village.”

“I don’t live there.”

“Yes, I know. But the villagers would find you and kill you.”

“Why?”

“They kill all Moon Holders.”

“I didn’t want to be a Moon Holder.”

“None of us did.”

“Were your family Moon Holders?”

His face changed from soft to hard. “My mother and sister were.”

“Why kill your father, then?”

“The villagers did no care.”

I didn’t answer. It seemed like a sore subject.

“Would you like to sit up?” Moondancer was suddenly kind again.

“Yes.”

He grabbed my arm and helped me up. When I was sitting up, I got very dizzy. He gave me a cup of water. I noticed that the cup was made out of stone but it wasn’t rough on my lips.

“Did you know that all Moon Holders are born on the third day of the third month if it is a full moon?”

“No.”

“They are. “

I slowly stood up. He turned and walked out of the cave. He seemed nice enough, but he did have that anger issue. I barely knew who he was, but I liked him. The only problem was he took me to his home while I was unconscious, and I had no clue how long I was going to be here, or if he was even going to let me go. I straightened my tunic, then walked outside. The sun was high in the sky and Moondancer was no where to be found. I walked back inside and looked around. There were two beds, a fireplace dug out of the stone, a table made out of stone, four seats made of stone, the table was set with two places, complete with napkins. I wondered where he had gotten the napkins. Most of the things in the cave were natural. He had a lot of patience, because all the dishes were made of carved stone. I noticed an opening near the back of the room. As I got closer to it I saw that it was a tunnel. I saw a light at the end and couldn’t resist walking toward it. Before I got there, the light blinked out and I was pushed back roughly.

“Do not ever go back there!”

Moondancer. Why can’t he say things nicely? “I was just curious.”

“That can kill you!”

We were back in the front room again. “Did you make all of this?”

“Yes.”

“When can I go back home?”

“Never.”

“You can’t keep me here!”

“Yes, I can!”

I slapped him. He grabbed my wrist. It wouldn’t have bothered me, but he was squeezing and it hurt. I bit my lip to keep from crying out. “Didn’t your father ever teach you how to not be violent?”

He let go of my wrist. “You are not leaving.”





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