Extracts from “Stalking the Shadows” – 2

You can come no closer.” Drushuk yelled, fear just beneath the surface. “This is sacred land, go back.” Mugra stopped, and so did his men, The man was right, they knew the land was sacred because of the old ones and the sacrifices the tribe had made to them, but they did not know why they could go no further. Mugra shrugged; this man, this shaman was strange, he had seen him on many occasions gathering plants and fungi on the plain.

 “We shall pass!” Mugra shouted, “We will have Dimek and Kapok!”

“No!” Drushuk yelled back, “The great river will not allow it!” Mugra considered this for a moment before replying.

“You lie, Thinker.” He used the term the chief used, spitting it out like a rotten pip. “You lie to protect cowards.”

Drushuk did not reply, instead he bowed his head in silent prayer, summoning his energy and calling upon his gods.

“O sun and sister moon.” He whispered, “O old ones who own the land, we the young ones beg aid.” Mugra signalled the advance. “O great river who is our father, great river who rules the land and laughs at the sky, I, Drushuk ask you to breathe.” Mugra and his men began to run. “Great river, great sky, great land, sun and moon, old ones and all the gods and spirits I beg the river’s breath.”

The seventeen stopped dead. From out of nowhere, an impenetrable white mist enveloped them, disorienting and confusing. Exhausted and shaking, Drushuk thanked the gods and his ancestors, and made his way back to his company.

 

All text copyright BJ Edwards
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