Fantasy Fiction Adventure

“America.” I say softly, looking at the floor.

“Yes. It has lots of interesting things, we even have airplanes.”

I stared at him blankly.

“Or, we have, boats-”

“We used to have those. But they were small, wooden bowls that fell apart when we tried to get in them.”

Charles looked stunned.


He closed his eyes and just lay there, shivering a bit.

Then he sneezed, groaning afterwards.

“You probably have a cold, let me get you some hot tea. I'm sure it will help.”

He said nothing, and did nothing.

I got up and poured him some tea, bringing the wooden cup over and holding it out to him.

“Here. Drink this.”

He didn't take it, or react.

I reached down and tapped him, but he still didn't react.

Glancing down at the cup in my hands, I sighed.

“Guess I’ll just set this over here.” I mumbled, setting the cup down on the dinner table again.

I sat beside him, feeling his head for a fever.

It was fairly hot, but not terrible.

There was a knock on the door, and I opened it to find the Herbalist with a basket full of dried plants.

“Hello dear, how is he?”

I glanced over at Charles, then at her.

“Come in, he just went back to sleep.”

The wrinkled old woman smiled, stepping through the door with ease.

“Any problems at all? At least, that you know of?” She asked, setting her basket down gently and looking over Charles.

“I think he has a cold.” I answered, sitting down at the table to watch.

The woman felt his head, then took the yak skin off and set it to the side.

“I'll need some hot tea and some soup, and hurry, will you?” 

I reached over and grabbed the tea, handed it to her, then sat back down.

“I already have some broth over a fire outside, it should be done in a few minutes.”

The Herbalist nodded, holding the tea up to Charles’ mouth and tilting his head back so he could drink it.

I watched curiously, as she grabbed a few herbs out of her basket and crumpled them in the tea, swirling them around before giving him another drink.

He coughed, groaning again before blinking open his eyes.

“I-” he started, but the old woman shushed him.

“It's fine, dear, you're going to be fine.”

Charles looked flustered, and alarmed, that someone was up in his face.

I chuckle, and Charles looks over, his eyes landing on me.

A vague hint of recognition flashed across his gaze, but he still looked uncomfortable. 

“A-Amora, right?” He asked, giddily. 

The woman sighed and grabbed the skin again, draping it over him.

“Yes, that’s Amora, but that doesn’t matter right now.” The woman said, holding out the half-empty cup to him,” Now drink.”

Charles stared at the cup, finally grabbing it and taking a small sip.

He made a face.

bleck- What is that?”

He’s talking differently now, more, calmer and relaxed. 

Not desperate and hopeless.

The Herbalist gave me a look of utter bewilderment.  

“Let’s talk outside.” I tell her, motioning for the door.

The woman nods, giving a reassuring smile towards Charles that only I know means, stay-here-or-I’ll-never-forgive-you look. 

When we reach a safe distance from the entrance, she gives me a slightly worried look.

“What’s wrong with him?” She asked, folding her arms.

“He’s...not acting normal. I...I think he’s delirious.” 

Now she looked panicked.

“So it’s worse now. He must have pneumonia.” The woman said, her voice strained.  

“Would pneumonia do that to a person?” 

The woman glanced over at the house, then back at me.

“Lot’s of things are possible with it. He will need lots of rest, in order to make sure his recovery is a success.”

I shook my head, taking a deep breath.

“I don’t want anymore death in my house.”

The Herbalist’s gaze softened.

“It should not kill, unless it truly gets bad. If so, bring him to me and I shall do everything in my power to keep him alive.”

I thanked her, and set her off on her way after she gave me the instructions for caring for pneumonia.

Charles had fallen into a deep sleep again, but had thankfully set the, now dirty, cup on the table.

That night, I lay on my cot, staring at the rickety ceiling and imagining things I wish could happen.

My parents are alive again.

I find the perfect man for myself, my dad giving him his blessing, having a wonderful wedding.

But none of that would ever happen, now that my parents were dead.

I didn’t think I could actually trust myself, now that I was on my own, to choose the right one for me.

Of course, I found some of the older village boys attractive, but I wasn’t really that close with them.

Then my mind wandered to Charles.

What about him?

Was he different from the others?

I shook it off.

I shouldn’t think about that now, I didn’t know if he had feelings for me, let alone did I know myself if I had feelings for him.

We had barely just met.

After a while, my thoughts turned random, and I felt myself slipping off.

 I wasn’t prepared for the morning.

The next morning, Charles was gone.

I bolted upright, scanning my house for any sign of him.

The door was hanging wide open, and I ran out, standing in the doorway, eyes wide with fear.

But Charles was simply sitting on the small cliff about three yards from the front of my house, watching the sun rise.

I breathed a silent sigh of relief to myself before walking over and sitting beside him.

His face was blank, and I could see a hint of sadness in his eyes.

But he smiled weakly when I sat beside him, looking away.

“Are you doing alright?” I said quietly, making him flinch.

“oh-uh-sure...I’m good.” 

I looked him over out of the corner of my eye. 

He looked better.

His skin wasn’t ghostly white, and he was breathing easier now.

I looked away and stared off into the distance, just as he was doing.

But then, he spoke.

“What is that tree, down there? I’ve never seen anything like it before.”

I looked at what he was looking at, a bit startled.

But when I saw which tree he was talking about, I smiled.

“That’s Forelsket. It stands for the promise of two lovers, and that their bond will never break.”

  Charles remains silent for a moment before responding.

“Tell me.”

I give him a weird look, he returns it with a meaningful stare.

“Tell you what, exactly?” I ask, as politely as possible.

“The story. I know that tree has a story. And I know that you are part of that story. So, tell me.”

I gape at him, unsure how to respond.

“Well, it started a long time ago. There was a sailor, who came from afar, just like you. He, after seeing this land, decided he wanted to live here,” I can feel my voice grow more confident as I go on, “One night, the last night he was here, he, his captain, and his crewmates met a girl, one of great beauty. She was kind and offered them food and drink, which they accepted gratefully. But after she had left, the Captain claims her as his own, and vows that he will force her into marriage. The sailor, being that he was a kind and just man, decided he would go tell the girl, and try to save her from her terrible fate. So, he set out, only to find himself speechless when he found her, watching the ocean. The girl caught him watching and-” I cut off, suddenly realizing I am being pulled into the past, where my father told me the story every night.

   “Go on.” Charles says, motioning for me to continue.

“So, she caught him watching and told him to not worry, and that the captain, nor anyone, could ever harm her. Then they ran away, laughing, and stopped at this tree. The girl told him that they would name the tree Forelsket, to show their promise of their never ending love, and they carved the name into the tree. But, in the morning, the girl had gone, never to be seen again. But she had left one word for the sailor-on last message to deliver him,” I pause, unsure of if I should tell him about the origin of my name, “and the word was Amora.”

   “And that’s how you got your name.” He says quietly, turning to wear he is looking off into the distance.

  “Yes. That is how I got my name. It was my fathers favorite story. He would tell it to me every night.”

  Charles looks down at his dangling feet.

“I wish my parents had been that way. But of course, they're gone now. Sunk to the bottom of the ocean with their precious jewels and other expensive things.” 

He says the last part with a bitter tone, making me wince.

I am appalled by that statement.

What parent wouldn’t love their child? Especially a young man who is fit to do outdoor work and other things that women can’t do.

“I-I’m sorry. I don’t really understand. Your parents didn’t love you?”

Charles takes a deep breath, slouching down.

“They might have. But one things for sure, they loved all their statues and jewelry and dinner parties, anything a rich person does or has, more than they ever loved me.”

May 10, 2021 03:33

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