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Algaysa- First Chapter
I crouched on the branch. I sighed and fell back against the trunk. The wood underneath me creaked threateningly.
“Calm down. I know you don’t like me sitting on you, but get used to it.” The tree began to shudder slightly. “Okay, I’m sorry, but you know I can’t get down. Happy?” The leaves rustle and opened up to allow the sun to beam down on me. I smiled slightly. It was a beautiful day, but I was stuck up a tree on watch. I thought about some of the many things I could have been doing if the war was over… swimming in the lake… sunbathing in the meadow…running in the woods…
“I hate being on watch.” I sighed and tried to get comfy. “I’m talking to myself again. People will think I’m crazy. The thing is, there are not many people around here to think I’m crazy.”
I felt the cold stab of loneliness. I should, really, be used to it by now. The wind had turned chilly and Goosebumps raised the small hairs on my arms. I shifted to try and get out of the wind. Something dug into my lower back.
I pulled out my dagger and examined it as I turned it over in my hands. The blade was heavily scratched and made the sunlight dance in all directions. The handle was a golden head of an eagle. I rubbed it with my thumb; an old habit that I used to think brought me luck. Of course, luck doesn’t exist; it’s just skill and good decisions.
There was growling from a distance. My head snapped up. I tucked my dagger back into my belt and peered through the leaves. Something was coming through the bushes. I had a feeling I knew what it was. I rested my hand on the hilt of my sword and crept further along the branch to get a better view.
The growling grew louder. It was definitely wolves, about ten of them. There was something else with them. I couldn’t quite see what.
I was suddenly moving. It was an automatic reaction. I jumped down from the tree and took out my sword. I should have really thought this through. It’s too late now.
I crouched slightly and waited for the wolves to attack. They began to circle me and their growling got deeper. I didn’t panic. I knew what to do. This will just be an ordinary task to me, like the washing-up or taking out the trash. I smiled slightly at my rambling thoughts.
Then the fight began. The leader attacked first like always. The others quickly followed. I defended myself easily. I forced myself not to get too cocky. I killed one… two… three… four… it was too easy… there goes a fifth… sixth… down to the last four… three… two… only one left.
This is the time that my sword decided to break. The wolf was suddenly on me. I was pinned against the ground and trying to push him off me, if I could just reach my dagger… His teeth were inching towards my face and I was losing my strength. He was going to kill me. He was just waiting till I was too tired. He wasn’t going to have to wait long. I had to get it now. In one swift movement, I reached it and stabbed… I missed.
I’d managed to push the wolf off me, but it was coming again. My dagger had flown out of my hand and I braced myself. I expected teeth and pain. I waited with my eyes shut… five seconds… ten seconds… thirty seconds… What was it waiting for? I slowly opened my eyes.
A creature was stood there with part of my broken sword. I squinted to try and make out what it was. It was too tall to be a dwarf, but that’s what it looked like, a very tall, beardless dwarf. Unless…
“You’re human?” I didn’t trust my own eyes. The body of the wolf lay at his feet and I suddenly felt ridiculous, lying on the floor. I warily, stood up. He looked about the same age as me, or at least how I’d think someone of the same age would look like. He had dirty blonde hair and bright blue-green eyes that reminded me of the ocean. It took me a while to work out what happened. “You stole my sword! Why did you do that? I almost had him.”
“Umm… sorry I… You looked in trouble…” He offered it to me. I took it and sighed. “…and I didn’t steal it… just borrowed it.”
“This is useless now, anyway. We need to go. We don’t need any more of them showing up.” I nodded towards the body of a wolf. I turned to walk away.
“Why should we go with you? You just killed them. How do we know you aren’t going to kill us?” I looked around to see another boy, slightly smaller, with dark hair and brown eyes. He was pretty dull looking, but he was also human.
“Here’s the thing about me. I don’t like wasting time and I don’t like time-wasters. If I was going to kill you I would have done it already so I can get on with my life and if you are going to waste my time then go ahead and stay here. See if I care.” I began to walk again.
“They were taking us home. They were trying to help us.” He was really starting to bug me. I turned back around.
“You have no idea, do you? They were taking you to the Queen. She wants every human dead and since all, but me, is dead, she won’t mind killing you and since your friend here just killed a wolf, you’re in deep trouble.” I walked away. “Oh and by the way, if you do stay out here, you won’t last long. It’s getting dark.”
This was when I realised that there was a third. She was small, about nine, and had brown hair with blue eyes. She ran up to me and smiled. She held out her hand, wanting me to take it. I stared at it. I had no idea what to do. I’m not good with kids. She looked so innocent. She obviously wasn’t from around here. When I was her age I was already on the run. The blonde haired one came and took her hand. He smiled at me soothingly. I think I scowled at him back. I can’t get my head straight anymore.
I walked on without saying a word. I heard the dark haired one scurry up behind us. He didn’t look too happy about coming with me, but I think he'd be even unhappier on his own. It was getting dark and we needed to get to the cave. I started to walk faster. I heard them stumble behind me. They weren’t used to walking on rough ground. I wondered where they were from.
The forest was getting thinner. We were almost there. The old prophecies were going through my head. Could it really be them? I listened harder at their panting. I remembered that they didn’t look anything special. They didn’t even look related. They couldn’t be them, but how the h*ll did they survive? Did they say where they were from? No. The younger boy said the wolves where taking them home. What if they were the Queen’s spies? Did the prophecies describe them? No. It was just two brothers and a sister. They also said something about another girl. There’s only three off them. It couldn’t be them. So, where did they come from?
I shook my head. I need to concentrate. Boran will know if it’s them. I just need to get them to Boran.