Thursday, October 6, 2011

Rule of Three: First Post

If there's one thing you'll learn about me is that I have a bad habit of leaving everything for the last minute. Of course I did the same here with this Rule of Three Blogfest entry, I finished it just a few hours before deadline, even though the prompts were out for weeks, and of course, I didn't have much time to edit it properly. Still, here it is, an entry for the Rule of Three Blogfest, the rules for which you can find here. The rules say the entry must be based on one or more of these prompts:
  • There is an argument 
  • There is fear of an impending misfortune 
  • There is a humorous circumstance 
  • Someone might fall in love 
I think I managed to use three of them more or less successfully, all four if you find the situation where a guy freezes when he sees a pretty girl funny, which is not really written to be funny (thinking about it now, I probably missed a great chance for some humour. That's what happens when I don't give myself enough time for editing). Another rule says it has to be 600 words max, which forced me to throw out most of the description, which is a pity. I finally ended up with 610 words. I hope these extra 10 words won't be held against me, I really couldn't bring myself to cut out anything more.

To quit all the jibber-jabber, here it is: 

It was late afternoon when they caught site of a town in the distance. Hadelaide was relieved; they were walking since early morning. A sight of a place that promised rest, water, perhaps even food put some spring into her step.

At least she only had herself to carry. She couldn't imagine how tired Adrien must be, carrying Gray in his arms the whole way. It wouldn't have surprised Hadelaide if the little fiend got injured just so she wouldn't have to walk. The scrawny mage couldn't have weighted much, but carrying her in the hot desert sun was surely no picnic. Not that Adrien complained. That wouldn't be like him. His blue tunic was soaked in blood - that's one piece of clothing ruined beyond saving.

They reached the first of the houses. The few people in the street stared at them.

"Do you have a healer in this town?" Adrien asked a kid passing by.

The child pointed to a house further down the road.

A moment later they were knocking at the door. The door creaked open and a delicate young woman stood at the door frame.

"Yes?" she blinked at them.

Adrien didn't reply - he just ogled at her.

Hadelaide rolled her eyes and stepped up.

"Are you the healer?" she asked.

"Not a healer by magic, but I do have some knowledge of herbs and potions."

"Better than nothing," Hadelaide shrugged. "May we?"

"Yes, of course," it seamed that only now she noticed the bundle in Adrien's arms. "This way."

She took them into a large, sparsely furnished room. A bed leaned against the far wall, while an old cupboard and a fireplace shared the side one.

Adrien gently placed Gray on the bed. Their hostess pushed pass him to remove Gray's clothing, revealing a deep gash along her abdomen.

"When did it happen?" she asked.

Adrien was still looking for his voice, so Hadelaide had to jump in again.

"Early this morning. She overestimated herself. Again."

"You brought her just in time. A little longer and there would be nothing I could do."

She called for a maid to bring some hot water and clean towels. Acquiring a few bottles of balms and potions from the cupboard, she commenced cleaning and swathing the wound.

Gray stirred. "Adrien..." her voice was barely audible.

"I'm here," he took her hand.

"Darkness... Falling... He's calling them..." she mumbled.

"What?" Adrien frowned. "I don't understand."

"Beneath us... Calling them..." she went on.

"There's nothing to understand," Hadelaide sighed. "She's delirious."

"She lost a lot of blood," the healer concurred.

"Listen..." the muttering continued. "It's getting closer..."

Hadelaide frowned. He was holding her hand, looking more desperate by the minute. She couldn't bear watching him like that.

"Why don't we leave the healer to do her work in peace and go find something to eat. She's in good hands here."

He shook his head. "She needs me."

"There's nothing you can do here. You need rest," she pushed on.

"Hade, for Gods' sake!" he snapped at her. "You may not care about her, but I do. Go if you want, I'm not leaving her side."

"Fine!" she snapped back and stormed out of the room. "See if I care," she mumbled to herself as she opened the front door.

As soon as she stepped out, she realized something was wrong. There were mountains north of the town, or at least they were there when they arrived. Now, the only thing visible there was an enormous dark cloud, like an approaching storm. Only, she'd never seen a storm cloud like that.

"What in seven pits of hell is that?"


  1. What, no comment so far? This is well written and I can't wait to read the next part.

  2. Like you I waited til the last minute to write my first piece for REN3. (I wrote it on Wednesday for it to be posted Thursday.)

    I think this is a great beginning. I like the characters and the sense of impending doom. I look forward to reading more! (Plus I adore the fantasy genre.)

  3. oooh, the storm is coming closer! I hear the Kings of Leon song in my head as she stands and looks at the looming clouds. Can't wait to see what's coming!

  4. I really want to know more about the injured character - I hope next week focuses on Gray!!

  5. Really like the set-up. Seems like Hadelaide and Adrien are in some ways Gray's equal? Looking forward to seeing everyone else develop.

  6. Hi there! I'm glad to see that you've joined Rule of Three! This is sort of funny, but another entry reminded me somewhat of your published fairy tale, prompting me to stop by and see what you've been up to! If you haven't seen it, it's here....

    I've a feeling that black cloud is not going to be a pleasant thing.... Ha!

    I hope you don't mind my asking, but I am wondering if you find it difficult to write in English, or if you're more comfortable writing in English? I'm learning German right now with Rosetta Stone, and I have a hard time of the written exercises! Does it ever get easier??

    Well, best of luck in the Rule of Three ~ Nadja

  7. There you are! I stopped by here a few days ago to see yours, but it wasn't up yet.

    So, did you name Hadelaide on purpose so you can shorten it to Hade? Made me think of the underworld, which Gray seems to be mumbling about.

  8. @treelight
    Thanks for the first comment! And for stopping by and reading my entry, I'm glad you liked it.

  9. @Corinne O'Flynn
    Me too, I still have no idea what's that coming! Thanks for reading :)

  10. @Kurt Hartwig
    Not sure what you mean by equal, but they are of roughly the same age and same status. Basically all three of them are friends, only Hadelaide is not too fond of Gray. I'm not sure if that part was clear enough.

  11. @Barbara V. Evers

    I'm constantly doing things at the last minute. I think I was putting it off because I couldn't figure out what that cloud is going to be. The next one will hopefully come sooner.

    Actually I did name Hadelaide to be shortened to Hade but not for this story, she's an older character. Her mother calls her Adela, but don't tell anybody ;)

  12. Hi Daina,

    It's nice to meet you. Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment.

    First, I have to say I really like you name choices. As for the story it's well written, intriguing, and a bit mystical. Great set up.

    I'd definitely read more.

  13. Ooh, I like the way you used the disappearing mountains. Can't wait to see what happens!

  14. I wonder if the last minute pressure makes us more intent on the write
    Great cliffhanger beginning

  15. Lots of mood and mystery.

    Yeah, ten words won't kill you in our judging, but it does take off "points". Do try to keep it under 600. The original max count was 500!!! I found ten words to edit out just in your first two paragraphs, and not upset anything in your storytelling.

    Stephen King said "don't be afraid to kill your babies." Best thing I took from his book "On Writing"

    Looking forward to the next installment.

    co-host #REN3
    Tale Spinning

  16. Great set-up of the situation and stirring the pot of boiling impending doom. Love the last sentence. Roland

  17. Wow, nice tension. Story is tightly crafted. Looking forward to the next installment.

  18. Oooh! Can't wait to see what happens. :-)

  19. That's a nice start. It might not be funny per se, but I loved the bit where Adrien is lovestruck at first sight of the pretty healer. Thanks for visiting Renaissance with us!

  20. @Michael Di Gesu

    Nice to meet you too :) I'm glad you liked it, I had fun writing it. I'm rather enjoying this blogfest.

  21. @ladysknight

    It certainly plays a part :) Although I do like to have more time to edit.

    Thanks for reading.

  22. @BornStoryteller

    This was over 750 words, so I didn't just kill those babies, I massacred them :D There was some quite nice descriptions and background info on the characters :( I was afraid I'd loose on the personality if I cut any more. I guess I took too big of an idea for this challenge. Other entries won't past 600, I promise.

    Thanks for organizing this blogfast, I'm really having fun writing this :)

  23. @Roland D. Yeomans

    Thanks, Roland! I hope the next three instalments won't be disappointing!

  24. @TD Tessier

    Thanks. After reading your entries, that means a lot to me :)

  25. @Misha

    Hope I won't disappoint you :) Thanks for reading!

  26. @kelworthfiles

    I still wish I made it funny, then I'd have all of the prompts. I regret now I missed the chance. Still, I'm glad you like it!

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