Friday, September 2, 2016

Chronicles of Gaia Chapter 4: As the Fires Burn

Gaia is a harsh mistress that burdens Drethiveal until they become stronger. Until they earn both the respect of her and their fellow Dreth. Our life was not an easy one and thinking that everything would turn out good was a mistake. One had to always be prepared for disaster and the pain it brought.

But not even the strongest and wisest Dreth would know how to cope with the pain me and the other survivors now felt. Hawn Falco, Donta Nevin, Nadia Caballus, Nidae Boris, and myself stood watching Native Lakes burn for hours. There was no talking or eye contact as we did.

I shivered even though the air was warm and humid. Frank was dead and his scent was now mixed in with the other burning corpses. Even though I knew he was dead I thought I could hear him screaming in pain. The need to rush over to help the illusion was so great that I didn't know how I managed to remain still.

The fact that I did was a testament to either my strength or my fear. I didn't know which answer would be worse.

Nidae's face had a look of pain that was a far cry from his usual expressions. Usually he had some happiness to him even if that took the form of being annoying. Right now I wished that he was being annoying so that there would be some normality to this situation.

But no, he looked pained and I knew why. Ash Tidae had not escaped the fiery inferno that used to be our home. His best friend, who he had feelings for, was dead because of me. If only I hadn't decided to take pity on the Rethi I would still have a home, a husband, and the chance of a family.

"I think it's safe to go back." Nadia said once the flames died down. "If we want to go back, that is."

She and the rest of us looked to Hawn. As a warrior we all trusted, he would become our leader until our situation changed. None of us knew how much fighting there would be in the near future and he knew how to plan for battles. Whether we had warnings of the battles days or hours beforehand.

"You were the last one out." Hawn said and looked at me. "Are there any Rethi left alive?"

"No," I replied. "They sent out a signal and were killed before I could get to them."

Donta looked at me with pity in her eyes and that scared me. She was such a vicious Dreth that having pity from her was uncomfortable. What made it even more uncomfortable was that she probably thought I had wanted to take pleasure in killing the Rethi.

She wasn't wrong but I wouldn't admit that to her.

Go HERE to Read the Full Chapter

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