Friday Fiction: The Ruon Chronicles, Prologue: Book 1, Part 2
In which the magic system is shown in action
Hello again Dear Reader,
Today I’m posting the second part of The Ruon Chronicles’ prologue. In this one I really get more into the magic system and how it works, mwahahaha!
Prologue, Part 2
Bloodstone and Ranor’s Nith, Tarion thought. No arrow would be able to stop him.
Harhas batted away the captain’s sword and the blade didn’t as much as leave a scratch on his arm. The guards all had their swords drawn and stood their ground, but didn’t dare go any closer. Harhas walked backward towards the water — to where the Ruon stood.
“He’s used bloodstone!” Tarion warned the Ruon and took a step forward, another arrow at the ready, and glanced down at Ranor.
The large man was on all fours, his face deathly grey, wheezing as he tried to catch his breath. He raised his head slowly, mumbling a curse at his own stupidity. He tried to brush the ash lines from his shirt, but only managed to smudge the light grey grains into the blue fabric.
“That hurt a lot more than I thought it would.” Ranor gave a slight nod to the three Ruon as he rose unsteadily to his feet and coughed.
Néa, an elderly woman in green, nodded back.
Tarion looked from Ranor to Néa — as did Harhas. The Khalver seemed unsure now, taking a small step sideways as Néa pulled the knitted shawl from her shoulders. The shawl was the green of young leaves in spring and, as she held it in her hands for a moment, Tarion saw that the centre of the triangle’s leaf-like pattern formed a number of intertwined guarding charms. A deep green shadow flowed along the fine yarn of the knitted piece as Néa imbued the piece with more Nith. At her signal, the guards stepped forward, driving Harhas closer to the three Ruon.
With his hands still bound, there was nothing Harhas could do to stop her except plunge into the water or try and make it past the guards. The red glow of Harhas’s eyes dimmed as the bloodstone in his body was spent. He no longer laughed. Blood started to stain his chest where Tarion had shot him.
Harhas raised his bound hands to pull the arrow from his chest, but managed only a cry of pain. He staggered away from the Ruon, realising their plan, and nearly fell; catching himself just in time. Then Néa was at his side, pressing the bundled-up shawl against his chest and sending all the Nith she could manage into him.
The final glow of red in his eyes died as he shouted a curse, hands grabbing at Néa to stop her. Then his eyes rolled back in his head and he fell to the ground in a heap, leaving Néa to stand with her hands covered in the ashes of the spent shawl.
Breathing heavily, she motioned for the other two Ruon to come closer.
“Wislic Néa,” Ranor said in a way that made it sound like a question.
“I will live.”
The other two Ruon pulled the arrow from his chest and pressed healing cloths to the wound.
“Fool!” Néa chided Tarion. “Look what you’ve done!”
“He took bloodstone! He would have killed Ranor if I hadn’t done something.”
“We need him alive!”
To be continued…
A few words about lace knitting
For the most part when we think about knitting, we think of thick jumpers, gloves, and the like. However, what got me back into knitting (I learned when I was 5 or 6, but crochet seemed to be ‘my thing’), was seeing lace knitting on Pinterest. I had no idea that such lace patterns existed beyond Shetland shawls!
So, when it came to creating the magic system, I immediately thought of the find work that you get with lace rather than fair isle, colour work, and the like.
To give an idea of the kind of lace I have in mind, have a look at Herbert Niebling’s designs over at Piecework magazine.
The guarding charm Néa uses looks something like the picture below. I hope that in a week or two’s time I will have been able to knit it (let the graph paper drawings commence!). If not, make it a month, hahaha! Hey, I’m still a beginner when it comes to lace knitting…
As the story and worldbuilding unfolds I’ll show the charms actually embroidered, knitted, etc. as much as I can.
Next week I’ll be continuing the history of The Ruon Chronicles on Tuesday and then finishing the draft of the prologue on Friday with part 3.
Have a great weekend everyone!