Five Swords

October 19, 2010
It is hard to sleep when you don’t know what lies ahead. I had been perfectly happy as a farm girl on a ranch in a small northern village. I was certainly never treated as normal since I knew how to use a bow and arrow with perfect angle and precision, and never failed to hit my mark. Many people look down on women who used weapons and my parents were rather embarrassed about that.
However, my life took a turn for the worst the minute I stepped into the hidden cave behind the waterfall. There, my destiny had been revealed by a Goddess, and she had told me that I was chosen to find five magical swords hidden among the realms. They had been created by a great leader and talented blacksmith. He had given them as gifts to the Kings of all the realms leaving one in the hollowed out Tree of Wisdom. The Tree of Wisdom was a large tree reaching up to the sky with its upmost branches hidden behind misty clouds. Its trunk was so enormous you could fit a house inside, and that was just what this great leader did. He lived in the tree even though it was a mystery as to how he got inside. He had been my friend, almost like a father, the father I wished I had been given. It is not that I don’t love my parents it is that they do not love me.
Anyway, I am supposed to find all of these swords and destroy them. The only way to do this is to burn them to ashes coated in the blood of the evil King in the realm of Reathen. Most fifteen year old girls usually learn how to cook, clean, sew, raise a family, and in my case take care of a farm. In the eyes of most Kimikans, women are meant to be married off and raise children. They were not meant to have roles in society or do something helpful like hunt. I was already not an “acceptable” match by Kimikan standards, and the fact that I am Chosen makes my situation even worse.
I awoke in the early hours of the morning in the cottage of the local doctor and wizard, Magnus Aisur Carfaelis. I was under his care because while I was in the cave I fainted and hit my head. This happened as the result of meeting my shape-shifting wolf companion, Amineh. My friends had to come after me and I started to mutter about how I was the chosen one. They thought I was insane, and they brought me to Magnus hoping he would take care of any head injuries. I peered out the window into the dark night; it couldn’t be considered morning until the sky began to lighten. I knew I was wasting my time in this cottage when I was perfectly fine. Something tugged at me from the pit of my stomach pulling me towards the door.

I slowly sat up and pulled back the rough wool blanket swinging my stiff legs over the side of the bed. I got to my feet quickly trying not to spill hay from the mattress. My heart raced while I searched for boots. I saw a large pair sitting at his door. They were leather, and looked new, as if they had just received a thorough scrubbing and a lubricating shine. I quietly slipped my delicate feet in to them; lacing the sides up tightly so that they would not fall off, then I grabbed a black cloak from the hook on the door pulling it over my tangled brown curls. I then dug deep into the pocket of Magnus’ robe sitting folded out on his table, and retrieved a dagger that had been sharpened to a razor point. It was so sharp that it easily could have sliced through the toughest metal. I tucked it deep in the pocket of the cloak and pulled the hood over my face hoping to conceal my identity. The door to Magnus’ bedroom was shut tightly and locked. I crept close to the door and listened. I heard snores and the heavy breathing of a sleeping person. I turned and snuck out the door with the swiftness of a fox. I shut the door with such a quiet motion even someone right next to me could not have heard it. I turned around and quickly ran through the night clutching my black cloak. It flowed behind me uncovering the dark leather boots that rushed beneath me.

As I entered the clearing of Kimiko Village, a full moon illuminated the dark star filled sky. The stars twinkled and flashed over the great Tree of Wisdom. The tree stood tall and lonely with large branches reaching out towards the heavens. I looked doubtfully upon the small branches near the top. I breathed in heavily and rushed forward. I heard footsteps and instantly pulled up against the wall of a cottage holding my breath. I closed my eyes until the footsteps stopped. I could not risk a man with a torch finding me out this late. It would not go over well with Magnus or the townsfolk. I turned slowly back to the path going through the town and quickened my footsteps. I heard them again getting closer and closer. My heart beat faster and I didn’t see anywhere to hide. A shadow cast over me and I crouched to the ground trying to blend in with the bushes. Suddenly the shadow jumped at me, I gave a cry. Then I noticed it was the wolf Amineh. Her blue eye and brown eye turned to me. I shivered.
“Goodness, wolf, you scared me half to death.” She seemed to smile at me as if she understood what I was saying. I petted her soft gray coat and then I got up. I carefully retreated back to the path and ran, with Amineh trailing behind. When I reached the tree, it stood towering over me with its immense limbs doubling me in size. I gulped and turned to Amineh. “Verto nox lupus,” I whispered and watched in amazement as her muscular body shrank into a squirrel. She scurried up the coarse tree bark. The bark’s jagged surface felt like little knives against my smoothly callused palms. I reached up into a small break in the knotted cortex of the tree. I reached up and tried to reach the next crevice in the bark.
It was extremely hard on the muscles in my arms. I managed to inch myself closer to a limb, and looked with longing towards it as my feet wavered on the jagged bark. I felt my feet slipping from their catch and I rushed a hand up and searched for gap to hold on to. I found one closer to the limb and swung from it trying to reach my other hand up. Crack in the wood beneath my feet snapped off and I dangled as the veins in my wrists bulged as they tried to hold on. For a second I felt as if I was to fall but my toes fell into a hole and balanced me. Then I reached up with my already tiring arms to the limb but my hands had no strength to pull me up and my hand just ran over the surface scratching my fingers. I didn’t have many choices and time was running out so I pulled the fresh blade from the deep pocket of my hood and jammed it in near the limb. Sap dripped slowly down the blade of the dagger. I reached up a hand straining towards the limb. I made a jump and was able to get one knee on the side and my arms were tightly gripped around and were slowly losing their clutch. My feet swung madly beneath me and kicked trying to get balance. Then I moved my foot over to the dagger pushing on it with my free foot, my other knee made it to the surface on the limb. Amineh stared at me from a limb above. I looked toward the dagger and got hold of it tugging at its handle. It did not budge. Sweat began to drip down my face and soak my hair. My heart raced. I pulled at it but it stayed put, I slowly backed up onto the large limb. That was the end of that dagger I thought worriedly. Then I looked up to the next limb starting to hoist myself up, but not without a hopeful last glance at the beautiful dagger. I pulled myself up easily that time because I had a limb to push off of; however I wasn’t going to have that easy trick the whole way up, because the limbs got smaller and smaller as you got closer to the top
For a while the limbs were sturdy and held my weight fine, and I was going at a fast speed, getting the hang of climbing. Then the sky turned from black to a deep indigo and the limbs began to creak under my weight. Also the branches got more crowded and they scraped my face. One cut my cheek and I didn’t notice it was bleeding.
I went on; suddenly I heard some leaves rustle and the deep canopy sway. As I looked up with fear a pair of yellow eyes met mine. I jumped because they had caught me off guard and I fell down hitting the limb below me hard. My back ached and felt stiff. I looked up and the eyes blinked then I heard a screech. I couldn’t breathe it was a screech owl. I held still and tried not to blink. Then there was an awful sound. The sound I was hoping not to hear. The snap and the crack of the wood beneath me made my eyes shoot open. I sucked in a breath and instantly got up. The branch started to tear apart. I looked down as the branch started to slant, I was high up. I scrambled up the branch and reached for the limb above me. I couldn’t reach it. I panicked and jumped barely reaching the limb. I caught onto it at the last second and scrambled up exhausted just as the cracked branch fell to the ground breaking limb after limb and dropping hard on a lower limb teetering back and forth and then steadying. I was filled with terror at how close I had come to falling but I let out a sigh of relief.
Then the hair on the back of my neck stood up the air felt suddenly moist and humid. The sky rumbled deeply and lightning shot across the sky. Rain began to trickle in through the dense layers of leaves concealing me from view. I knew I must move on, I shook the branch over my head but it was unsteady and there was no way that it would hold my weight. I rested and leaned over resting my head on the bark. Then I heard something from deep inside the tree. I knocked on the wood firmly with my fleshy knuckles. A hollow knock echoed through the inside. Rain started to pour and my unruly hair became soaked as well as my clothes and cloak. Thunder now shook the tree and the branches swayed violently. Lightning struck a limb. I covered my mouth to keep a scream from escaping. The village was no doubt awake due to the storm, and they would hear me. Then my mind wandered to Magnus I felt rushed. I dug deep into my pockets but my dagger was gone. I looked around and only found Amineh.
“Amineh!” I called through the rain that poured down. She met my eyes, “Get a rock, get anything, and hurry!” She scurried down the tree and I watched her until I began to become dizzy and faint. Lightning struck again closer to me, my heart beat in my chest. I worried what was to happen if she didn’t hurry. I looked down at my bloody hands and let the rain pour on them. I felt nauseous. Then Amineh bolted into my lap holding a large stone between her teeth. I pulled it out and began to bang it at the bark with all my strength. Nothing happened and thunder boomed. I clenched my teeth and pounded and pounded against it.
Finally the bark broke and the stone fell through leaving a hole, and it echoed down through the tree until it thudded at the bottom. I peered into the hole but my vision was blurred from the blood from the cuts on my head and sweat. Then there on a ledge dug into the inside sat a long box. I reached in an arm and pulled it out slowly. The rain darkened the wooden surface as I opened the latch. It popped open. I carefully pulled it open and a blade sat in velvet. Drops of rain sat on the surface of the shining blade and the red velvet lining. It was beautiful; the golden hilt was encrusted in emeralds, rubies, and sapphires. The blade shone and glittered in the darkness. I was awed by its beauty; it was the finest piece of work I had ever encountered. Lightning struck a branch not far from me and I shut the box.
I turned to Amineh who was snuggled into my wet cloak. “Verto nox lupus,” I whispered stroking her dripping fur. She transformed into a large hawk. The branch began to pop and give out. I mounted her back and clutched her wings. She bolted out of the tree and soared. I looked back at the tree as the branch fell down hitting the ground with a thud. Water poured down and Amineh swooped to avoid lightning. She flew in a spiral down into the woods next to the cottage of Magnus Carfaelis. I dismounted her and she transformed immediately into a wolf howling into the darkness of the forest. I wrung my sopping hair and stepped out towards Magnus’ cottage. There was light in it and my head throbbed. My back ached, my palms and knuckles stung, and the rest of me shivered. I ditched the wooden box and sword into a bush and walked towards the cottage slowly preparing to face what lied ahead…





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This article has 4 comments. Post your own now!

Joseyluvya23 said...
Jul. 28, 2011 at 11:57 pm
i LOVE this Keep writing I'd like to read You some day.
 
FtnsyLuvr9768 said...
Oct. 24, 2010 at 8:19 pm
I really liked this.... will there be more? Maybe how she gets all the swords?
 
Classmate 1 replied...
Oct. 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm
I can't wait to hear what lies ahead!
 
Mariah_13 replied...
Oct. 26, 2010 at 2:41 pm

Hi! Yes there will! Actually, this is just a excerpt from a book I'm writing! Look out for more in the future!

-Mariah

 
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