View Single Post
Old 09-23-2006, 06:44 PM   #202
Child of the 7th Age
Spirit of the Lonely Star
Child of the 7th Age's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 5,135
Child of the 7th Age is a guest of Tom Bombadil.
Lindir and Aiwendil:

The journey west across the plain proved uneventful. The walkers did not glimpse even a single rider who had been sent out to gather information or prevent them from making their escape. With all the noise and confusion that had taken place in camp, and so many horses still needing to be rounded up, the slavers were apparently resigned to waiting for the next day until they attacked. Lindir did not doubt that this attack would come; it was simply a question of when. Likely, it would take place under cover of darkness, yet the elf could not discount the possibility that the attackers might get impatient and plan their assault for earlier in the day. Either way, time was of the essence. Whatever the fellowship and the slaves were going to do, it had to be done quickly. There would be no time for indecision or argument. For the third time that night, Lindir mentally corrected his choice of words. There were no "slaves" here, only free men who had been wrongfully imprisoned and horribly abused.

The band slowly wound its way to the base of the small hill where Athwen and the others waited, Lindir walked by himself, lost deep within his own musings as he tried to mull out what to do. It seemed they had two choices: to attempt to rouse the camp and flee, heading north as quickly as they could, or to stand and fight. He knew what choice he preferred, and did not doubt that his other companions felt the same, even as tired and depleted by injury as they were. A group ofsome sixty slaves, one that included children and elders, and one where everyone was on foot, could not possibly outrun a band of thirty horsemen whose specialty was rounding up human flesh.

The more serious question involved the slaves. Would they understand the danger they were in, and be willing to fight? He and his friends could do little on their own; the commitment had to be made by the entire group.

That word "slave"... There it was again, Lindir acknowleged with a private groan. They had better get rid of those words and images, or it would drag them all under. The escaped slaves were men, no more and no less, and they deserved to be recognized as such.

Aiwendil was the first to spy the returning party and come running down the hill, waving his hand in greeting. Lindir assured him they had not been followed and then listened as the istar explained how the wounded were doing. "Not that it was easy for Athwen, mind you," Aiwendil pointed out. "She can not even light a fire to prepare the healing potions she needs".

"All the more reason then that we get out of here quickly. One more thing. Can you tell me anything more about Dorran? How bad is the injury?" Lindir pressed, loathe to lose the fighting skills of the only member of the group who had actually led men into battle.

"A broken rib. Nothing worse. He is rested and on his feet, but there'll be no heavy swordplay for him. Not if Athwen gets her way." The elf scowled at this piece of news. Athwen had an excellent reputation as a healer and would only recommend such a limitation if she felt it was truly necessary. Lindir was not about to challenge her judgment, but the loss would be felt.

"We must be on our way. Could you ask Athwen to take a quick look at Kwell and Shae. She is the woman who helped Dorran. Carl mentioned that she had an injury, and I know the young man has been though great hardship, although he does not complain. After that, we'll set out. There's much to be decided yet, and we won't have any answers till we get to the camp. Have people double up on the horses so no one has to walk. Best tell Athwen to put the young girl with her, since she seems to be the one who is having the most difficulty."

Lindir started to climb the hill but then looked back and added, "I almost forgot.. Aiwendil, could you speak quietly to the others and ask them not to voice or even think the term "slave"? Call these people free men, call them rebels, whatever they prefer, but I don't want us to brand a man with the same label that the Dark Lord tried to pin on him. I'll be back to help you with the horses in a minute. I have an idea I want to try out on Dorran."

Last edited by Child of the 7th Age; 01-23-2007 at 06:44 AM.
Child of the 7th Age is offline