Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Dread Hunt

The ùruisg quietly gathered walnuts in his bag. His job, Underwood had taught them, was to plant the seeds, still wrapped in green husks, throughout the forest so they could grow into more walnut trees.
They were taught the ways of gathering what nature had to offer and use that to create more nature. And now, Illaric was doing just that; this was his first season and he was one of the most industrious young ùruisg among them.
A simple job, but one near to his heart. Like most of them, he preferred going his job alone. He tended to get very cranky with too much chatter about him. After the harvest, he was much more amiable, but now, he was a quiet creature.
Illaric took his full bag and went deeper into the forest. It was dark here, the canopy thick, but that didn't mean that what he planted would not grow. Oh no, he pushed that green walnut into the ground and as his hand touched the earth, there was a pulse of that organic magick that helped the process along. He smiled and nodded as he rose and moved toward the next spot.
He stopped and looked at the crow that landed not far from him. There was a pause for a moment as he pondered the bird, but thought nothing of it and moved on. It seemed to follow him. He was okay with it. He would bury the walnuts deep enough that the bird couldn't scavenge them.
Two more crows landed in front of him, the third moving in from behind. Illaric stopped and suddenly got nervous. One of the crows lowered itself to the ground and stared at him while it screamed. And that scream brought a terror that the ùruisg could not explain. Nor did he care to, he simply ran as the howls of the hounds sounded out through the shrouded forest behind him.
Thunderous hooves pounded the ground as it chased the fae down. He ran, as hard as he could, but he could not outrun a nightmare driven by the insanity of the rider. The hounds nipped at his back and his shoulders.
The Bleak Queen gripped the reins and swung to the side, scooping up the ùruisg. The sound of the hooves thundered off, leaving only a spilled bag of green walnuts in place of the fae...

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