The city in the darkness

This is a continuation of the prompt I did yesterday. I'm copying Leah. She continued her story and I loved it, so I tried it too.

The light was dying even faster than usual. The grass fires sent up billows of smoke that turned the sun into a small bright dot, tinted by the ash. This would be to our advantage.
I  slowed Nieku and dismounted before he came to a complete stop. Holding the reigns tight so they wouldn’t jingle, I guided him into what was left of a merchant shop, a boulder having been thrown through the roof, one wall leaning over so far, we had to stoop to walk under it.
I quieted my breathing and spoke softly to Nieku to calm him. He would be still and quiet. This was how we survived.
Keja’s call pierced the silence once more. She would stay with whatever she had found until I came to her, continuing to call so I could locate her.
I gritted my teeth. I did not want whoever was following me to find her first. They may not go looking for her. But they may.
For nearly ten minutes, I waited, crouched and cramped in the building. No one came. I heard no footfalls, no chain mail jangling. Was it just a warning shot? Or were they waiting until I came back out. That would be foolish. Though Myndunes were not known for their common sense.
Leaving Nieku, I peered around the door frame. I still saw nothing.
The light was getting very low. If we did not go now, we would not be able to see to find Keja.
I slowly backed Nieku out, deciding to walk him. I would be able to see the ground better if I was closer to it. Speed would not be an advantage now.
Keja called again and I adjusted our course, ears tuned to any small sound.
Finding the hawk was more difficult than I anticipated. It sounded like Keja was near, but with the stone walls of wrecked buildings tumbling all around us, sounds could not always be trusted. Her call could be echoing  or bouncing off the stone any number of ways confusing my senses. We could be traveling in circles and I would never know. There was not enough light to tell anything apart and I dared not light a torch.
 Nieku stumbled, his hoof catching on something. Sighing, I stopped. There was a way I could find Keja, but I promised myself I would not use that power again. The moment I thought of it, the ache to use it pulled at my gut. I pushed the desire aside.
No. I would not do it. We could find her without giving in.
A screech cut through the air. She was on the other side of this square. I could barely make out the rustling of her white underfeathers.
Nieku and I moved quickly toward her, glad to have found her, glad I did not give in.
As we neared, I could tell that whatever she had found was small. It moved when it heard us.
A small voice rang out. “Hi!”
I nearly stumbled. A tuft of blond hair bobbed as the child stood up and toddled toward me. “Hi!” it said again, a smile spread across its face.
A child? No. A babe. This was not the help I had hoped for.
Deciding what to do, I raised my arm to call Keja, when another voice rang out.
“Don’t go any closer!”
My head snapped in the direction of the sound.
Just beyond the closest building, stood a boy holding a bow, an arrow knocked and aimed at my heart. 

1 comment:

  1. Woah! And then.... WHAT HAPPENS? Love the hint of the character fighting against something. Love that it's kids that are running the city. More, please.