A Reward On the Road

Submitted into Contest #192 in response to: Write about someone finding a treasure in an unexpected place.... view prompt



A Reward on the Road

"Eric, how's it going up there?"

Eric sighed.  He and his sister, Lucy had been in their family 's property, goinh through everything in the house, the attic, the barn and everything else in preparation for the sale.      Their parents had gotten older and had decided to retire to a condo in Florida and since neither of the children really wanted the family home, it had to be sold. 

Eric had been in the attic for most of the day and was already getting exhausted just looking at all of the 'junk: that had been stored there. 

He had 5 trash bags full of stuff ready to go and yet the attic seemed to have gotten messier and more packed.  Eric wiped  drops of sweat from his brow.


"Eric, that definitely sound encouraging.  You're not falling asleep in there are you?'

Big sisters.  Always so bossy. 

" I'm ok, but I need a little break here"

" Okay,..."

He heard a sigh and some footsteps heading away from the entrance.  Eric was about to come down the old ladder, when something seemed to glitter in his eye.  At first, he dismissed it as a trick of the light shining to through the window, but he noticed that although that light touched every object in it's path, such as old jewelry boxes, storage trunks filled with old clothes and other items, this object seemed to give off it's own light.

Curious, Eric approached the object in the pile of artifacts in that section trying to find it's elusive source in the ever burgeoning mountain of junk.

"Eric, are okay?  What was that sound?"

"It's okay, Luce.  I found something hidden, I think.  "

"I'm coming up."

"Sure.  Just watch your step."

Lucy steps made slight sound on the rickety ladder. She frowned as she sniffed the musty air and sneezed.

"Bless you.  Yeah it's kinda musty in here.  Big surprise.  I don't think anyone has been here in years. 

Lucy surveyed the bags of detritus and marveled that there was still stuff left over.

" Whew!  Guess you could use some help, huh?"

"Yeah but check this out.  Look at that light over there.  The sun is shining down on everything else but whatever this thing is...it's light is like bleeding through all of this junk.  It can't be a reflection.!"

"Yeah!   Let's see.." she started rummaging through the mound, tossing various items across the room.  

After a while, she stopped and gazes on the object.  

Eric spoke first,. "A... teapot?  Some kind of phosphorescent teapot?".

"What's that inscription on the top?"

Eric moved closer to it for a closer look and put his right hand on the handle.

"A Reward on the......"

"What?!!! " Eric shook his head and blinked.  He found himself at dirt crossroads that led off towards a mountainous region in one direction,  a hillside to his right, a downward path on the left and stone road behind him that seemed to lead to....a huge fortress straight out of a renaissance fair?  What happened?

A sudden growling came from the downward path and Eric saw some...creatures armed.with clubs charging straight towards him.  Eric headed towards the huge fortress across the bridge at a run.  As he did, he heard a whistling sound then a "thunk" and turned around.

The growling creatures were staggering backwards from the onslaught of some .....flaming arrows shot by a ....girl in a dark red Ren Faire costume with bunny ears?

"Greetings, Traveler!"

"What??" Eric said he turned around to face the strange archer girl. 

"It's okay, I scared them off for now, but they'll be back.  We had better head to the city and the knights.  These creatures usually don't get this close."

"Ummm... wait" Eric paused for a breath.  He rubbed his head.  " First off, thank you for rescuing me.   Second,.  Where am I and how in the hell did I get here?"

Before the girl could say a word, he started pacing in a tight circle on the bridge trying tell her what had happened.

"I was in an attic at my parent's old place going through the junk to prepare for a sale.  My sister had come up after I had noticed a shining teapot in the pile that had the words 'A reward on the road' written on the top.  After I touched it,  I am here.  How?"

The girl rested her chin on her hand as she shifted to one side and started walking towards him.  

"It sounds familiar but only vaguely.  I have heard of the teapot before but for more information, we will need to consult our librarian.  She knows all about the history and the legends of this place. If.any one here could help you find some answers, it would be her. "

Eric looked down at the stone bridge in disbelief shaking his head.

"Great.  Stranded in Camelot, being attacked by strange troll like creatures, being saved from by ….an archer and now my best way home is to follow the Ren Faire girl with the bunny ears! I always thought I should be following the white rabbit."

The girl shrugged.  "I'm afraid I have never heard of such things as 'Camelot' or 'Ren Faire' but if you really are from some other world, then you would get lost very easily if you don't find some help and I am offering that help!"

Eric sighed again shaking his head "you're right of course. I'm totally sorry. That was rude of me."

"I accept your apology! " She exclaimed, with a face of child who had just been given a slice of birthday cake. "Now follow me, traveler!"

Seeing that he had very little choice, Eric followed the girl into the fortress.

Lucy woke with a start back in the attic and tried to piece together what had happened.  She shook her head and looked around at the musty attic.

" Eric!?  Eric!?"

Her eyes scanned the attic for any sign of her younger brother but saw nothing.   With a sigh she headed down the rickety ladder and went searching for him in the main house.

In the meantime, the teapot had ceased to glow and simply laid on it side on the attic floor.  If anyone had picked it up, they probably would've seen a new figure on the body of teapot that looked a lot like Eric.

April 06, 2023 21:16

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Marty B
23:33 Apr 15, 2023

I like the premise of the story, and can see several more chapters coming on the next adventures in Camelot! IMO- You could have started the story more in the middle, ...'when something seemed to glitter...' to grab readers attention and filled in the exposition later.


Patrick H
20:10 May 09, 2023

Thanx for the advice and follow. Incidentally, the story had some inspiration from Genshin Impact


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