Free Creative Writing Examples – Read Book "For Honor" #1
Chilling cold settled itself more fully upon the barren landscape. A bone-chilling type of cold that seemed to fuse itself into the marrow of one’s being with an almost human bitterness. Not even the solace of falling snow pierced the stillness of the frigid panorama. No, it was quite simply too cold to snow, if such a thing were possible.
Rather than descending as fluffy white flakes, snow lay packed and trampled so heavily on the ground that it had been polished to a thick, rough slab of ice. And all this in early November. 1636 was turning truly vicious.
Through this bleak and barren terrain, two figures trudged as fast as their legs could carry them–fast enough so that the exertion might bring some needed warmth to their numbed bodies. Perhaps it would bring enough heat to withstand the biting cold–to ward against the icy fingers of air seeping through their breeches and leggings and multiple layers of clothes and deep into every muscle fiber and into their very bones.
The smaller of the two figures reached up to steady the taller man–actually the very tall man–as he stumbled over a stone frozen in the icy snow.
“Papa.” The boy’s eyes searched his father’s face as if seeking signs to assure himself that his father was all right, considering their most recent travails in the duplicitous world of espionage. That they had managed to escape the insidious designs of the powers that be–with their lives and the documents–was nothing short of a marvel.
Especially after such stratagems as they’d been obliged to adopt in their flight, he had no intention of letting his father freeze to death, even if he had to rely on sheer stubborn willpower to ward off the chilling hand of death. Christophe’s mouth drew into an even tighter line as he addressed his father. Splotches of healthy tinted skin stood out on the older man’s face–a hollow consolation that attested to the life that still animated him.
The older man, with grey-streaked brown hair, stopped short every so often and leaned with his hands on his knees as his son’s steadying hands left him. “Christophe, you must go on without me. I slow us down too much, and I will not be the cause of both our deaths.” He paused as the frigid air stung his throat, and then his eyes shifted back to the tall, proud boy with shoulder-length blond hair. “I thought I told you to get going.”
Christophe d’Anlass rolled his blue eyes and opted to ignore his father’s last few words. Instead, he urged his father to stand straight. Reluctantly, through an immense effort of will that had often served him in good stead, Thomas d’Anlass stood taller.
“Bon,” Christophe concluded with an expression of determined satisfaction. “I don’t wish to and won’t abandon what’s left of my family. Now come, we must hurry. There’s no telling how close to us those Prussians have gotten, and I refuse to be captured.”
Christophe crossed his thin arms across his chest and tapped a foot on the ice. That he had a cousin by his father’s deceased sister, he conveniently decided to forget since the young man was well on his way to squandering everything he had ever had and becoming a drunken, gambling wastrel–and that perhaps was an overly positive evaluation of his cousin’s flawed character.
Of course his intense dislike of the useless specimen of humanity could have something to do with the fact that Thomas was doing and had done all within his not inconsiderable power to cut Christophe’s cousin out of his will and completely out of the line of inheritance. No wastrel bastard is going to stand a chance to inherit my lands and my title, even if I must cash in all my favors with the king–as Christophe’s father had once stated. Christophe uncrossed his arms and gestured impatiently. “Well, come on already. We’ve got to get out of the Germanic territories, into Belgium, and meet with this Mazin you mentioned.”
Thomas endeavored to conceal his abrupt start and shivered, trying futilely to ward off the intense cold. He should have known that after these years of dragging his child around with him on his various spy missions for the king of France the boy would latch onto any names very quickly and remember them, even if they had only been mentioned once in passing.
Thomas was on the verge of arguing again when he caught that defiant look in the eyes of his only living child–the one that bespoke of imminent and stubborn rebellion. So much of his mother in him, Thomas thought, as he often did. Then he quickly dismissed the thought. Thérèse may have been years dead, but the pain was still too fresh. “I know you won’t let me freeze. Well, give me your hand. Let’s move quickly. Vite.” Thomas repeated the injunction to be quick in his native French rather than the German they had been speaking on this latest mission for king and country. He didn’t need to mention that those Prussian agents were still tracking them and that very soon those same agents would likely be upon them; nor was he in any shape to deal with them. And then . . . well, freezing might easily be a more merciful end.
Without further conversation, the pair proceeded on their course towards Belgium, the smaller figure helping to pull the larger on with the gentle, persistent pressure of his hand. The blond-haired boy, who appeared to be anywhere between eleven and three and ten, ducked his head as the wind suddenly kicked up and flung random loose particles of snow and ice into his partially covered his face. Just as quickly, his free gloved left hand went up to shield his face from the missiles. . . .
Kat Jaske http://www.forhonor.com