... now they must watch their abundance of luxuries fall away, making room for the tools of survival, and witness this time of relative peace wither into the same fears that harper's ballads had warned them about for generations.
 
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 Eye of the Marksman

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Posts : 106
Join date : 2012-10-14
Age : 35
Location : Memphis, TN

PostSubject: Eye of the Marksman   Sun Oct 28, 2012 1:43 am




The draped layers of fabric fluttered lightly in the wind while Flynn watched her prey. A fat wherry hen, pecking at some bug or other in the desert sand. Her mouth practically watered at the thought of it roasted, with the spices that they had traded for from Ista several months ago...

Keeping low, and with the beige colored fabric of her clothing blending in with the sandy surroundings, she stalked closer slowly, moving bare inches at a time. This approach could be almost maddening, but in this terrain she had no other choice. And Turns of practice made perfect, after all.

Finally she was in range, and the wherry hadn't even noticed anything. With a silent movement, she pulled an arrow from her quiver and notched it. Just as swift she had the bow drawn and angled sideways, compensating for her crouched position. She let the feathers of the fletching touch her cheek briefly, eyes narrowed as she gazed down the length of the arrow. She reveled in the barest tickle, her eyes focusing in on her target. Then she let it fly.

The thunk was resounding, and she moved quickly to retrieve her prize before one of the other predators in the area could steal it. They'd be eating well tonight, she thought with pride. And nothing had come off the holdings either. That added smugness: some hunters had to resort to picking off the outlaying members of flocks belonging to the holders, a habit she found distasteful. Her squad, however, always hunted wild. And that made her smirk: it had to drive those older men insane that she, a young woman, led the premiere hunters in the camp.

She put her boot on top of the hen and yanked the arrow out, giving it a quick cleaning with a well used length of cloth before replacing it. She was capable of crafting her own arrows, of course, but it was simply economical to maintain the ones she had.

Life was much easier, now, that she had been promoted to Captain of her own squad. A better tent and bedding for both her and her brother, better food, earlier pick at trades... but it still wasn't what she wanted. Tashien needed a home. A real home, in a Hold or a Hall, where he could grow up as something other than what they were. After so many generations, why did the label of Shunned still apply to them, she wondered for at least the millionth time.

And that was why she honed her skills, she thought grimly as she trussed the wherry up for transport back to the camp. Surely she would eventually find someone willing to look past her status and her gender and give her a chance. Or at least a kind hearted soul willing to give Tashien a chance. It would tear her hear from her chest, but she would do anything, including never see him again, to give her little brother that chance.

When she had been younger, her father had told her and Ember (another sore subject, one she poked at like a sore tooth, constantly and obsessively) about Thread and dragons and their duties to the Weyr. Some may scoff and call others insane, but she believed her father. Thread would return, and at least Tashien needed to be safe before that. She kept those thoughts to herself, of course. They were unpopular opinions to hold in the camp.

Now ready to return, she hefted the wherry across her shoulders with a grunt and turned back in the direction of the camp. A strange compulsion came over her, and she saw a flash of color in the sky.

A dragon, she thought with wistfulness. If only... but that was an even more unpopular opinion, especially recently.

But still, a girl could dream.
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