Monday, August 3, 2009

Berserker Part 44

Karnar watched Jarn walk off, doing his best to imitate the boy’s calm posture. He worked his way around to the left flank of the wagons, softly whispering their predicament to the militiamen as passed them. The mercenaries aknowledged him with barely perceptable nods of the head and clenching hands on sword pommels. Older militia men took the information in much the same manner, some looking sick or worried, but reigning their panic in by willpower.

Karnar had to give them credit, he knew many who would not be able to handle a similar situation. Unfortunately, he met one more. A thin sallow young lad, trembling as if the weight of the short sword in his belt was all he could bare. He looked at Karnar with big wavering eyes, he wondered how this runt had ever been assigned to escort the train in absolute bewilderment. He looked as if the slightest breeze would knock him to the ground.

Karnar still tried his best. He smiled and draped an arm amiably over his shoulder, earning a nervous smile from the boy. Still smiiling he whispered conspiratorially into his cocked ear. “I’m not trying to alarm you, so just keep calm and pretend nothing is amiss. But we are being watched”. Karnar’s efforts to calm the boy were for naught. Hearing that they were watched, he began whipping his head in all directions in an attempt to locate their spies.

Clapping him closer to his chest, Karnar continued desperately. “Just stay quiet, listen to your superiors, and remember what you were taught! You’ll get through this!”. The boy’s rising panic was too great to hold back, he shoved Karnar away and clumsily drew his blade. Still searching the tall grasses for hidden assailants, he shouted loudly for help.

That went well, Karnar thought cynically.

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