This is the latest chapter in “Hidden By Fog.” It was just completed late yesterday. So, after this post there will not be another post for this novel-in-progress until the next chapter is complete. I hope you can understand.
Walker: Chapter Seven
Slowly coming through the forest trail, Allen spots the silhouette of Plymouth rising along the horizon. The energy of the caravan skyrockets with the sight of the port town before them. Each patron manages to muster a little more strength to hasten their arrival.
They enter the city through the east gate, passing the ship harbor and farmlands as they do. The caravan driver made sure that everyone made it into the city and gave the dead woman to the priests that reside in the city. Allen mentions to the priest her peculiar departure. With the priest taken aback by the story, he blesses Allen for his service of killing the witch.
The caravan spends a day or so in the town to rest and prepare for the journey to Falmouth. Allen heads to the port side of the town. His next step in his journey is to secure a boat to America. Allen walked the dock as he saw ships of all sizes, some unloading and some loading up. Taking in the view of the magnificent vessels, he heads to the harbormaster’s station. There is a burly looking man standing in the doorway watching the ships until he spots Allen
“Ello, sir,” the large man says, “That’s a nice beast you ‘ave there.”
“Hello,” Allen replies, “and thank you.”
“Wha’ can I do fo’ ya, sir?”
“I’m looking for the harbormaster.”
“That’d be me.”
“I was wondering if there were any ships that were heading to America, particularly Jamestown?”
“Aye, I got one. Just came in yesterday from there.”
“I would like to secure passage for the soonest departure.”
“I’ll be tomorrow ‘fore the vessels ready to go.”
“That’s fine. How much will it cost me to secure passage?”
“’Round ten silver.”
“Deal. I’ll pay before I board in the morning.”
“Right, sir. See you in the morning.”
Allen and Jinx leave the harbormaster’s station. They wander about the streets of Plymouth in search for an inn. Finally finding an inn with few patrons and allows dogs, they enter the building. The atmosphere appears to be calming and serene. Allen looks to the barkeep.
“Do you have any rooms available for the evening,” He asks.
“Aye, have about half a dozen of ‘em still open,” The gentleman replies.
“Alright, I’ll take one. And a glass of brandy to go along with it.”
Allen lays money on the counter to cover the room and drink as the barkeep pours the drink.
“It’s the first room on the left up the stairs,” the barkeep states.
“Thanks,” Allen replies as he takes the drink and heads up to his room for the evening.
Location: Roanoke Island, America
Hevphrys sits upon a throne made of flesh and bone, slaves standing to either side of him. The walls are decorated with the bodies of the dead and lined with tools of torture. A massive bear of black fur, covered in scars, lays in the corner of the room. A young woman, silky black hair and olive colored skin, enters the massive room. The bear stirs and stares at the woman as she enters.
“I’m sorry, lord, but Uriel managed to defeat me,” the woman says, dropping to one knee before the creature.
“Aye, I know but you did manage to solidify his departure to America,” Hevphrys replies.
“I did. My sisters say that he is in Plymouth now waiting on a ship to depart.”
“Good, Good,” Hevphrys says with a menacing joy in his voice, “However, you were only killed by your greed over the unborn child.”
“I’m sorry, my lord. It won’t happen again.”
“Oh, I know it won’t,” He says as he rises from his gruesome throne.
With a wave of his hand the woman is lifted from the ground.
“There is only room for my lust, not yours. You failed. For that you must pay the price.”
The woman now suspended in the air, shows a face of absolute terror on her face as the creature before her slowly walks up to her. He grips one of her wrists with both of his hands. The woman releases a cry of pain at the strength of the grip holding onto her limb. With a sudden tension brought to the muscles in his arms, her arm is torn off.
The woman lets out a heinous cry of pain as she feels the tendons and muscles snap from her shoulder. Hevphrys tosses the now disembodied arm over to the bear in the corner. The beast rips into it like the carcass of a fresh kill.
“I’ve done this too many times for your petty greed to get in my way,” Hevphrys says.
“I’m sorry, lord. It won’t happen again, I swear,” the woman cries.
“It’s too late for that. I won’t tolerate this action.”
Hevphrys, now standing in front of the woman, raises his hand. He lowers it, as an idea crosses his mind.
“You will have a second chance. But fail me again and it will be far worse than death,” he says with a sinister grin gracing his lips.
“Yes, lord. I promise I will succeed in whatever you request of me,” the woman replies.
“Do you know the priest that he has grown close to?”
“No, but he was there chanting when Uriel struck me with that cursed stake.”
“I want you to kill him.”
“Yes, my lord. It shall be so.”
Location: Plymouth, England
Allen has trouble falling asleep during the night. The patrons at the bar downstairs, as few as there are, are still fairly loud. He heard a glass break earlier. The room he paid for is extremely bare. Only a small bed, dresser, and a single mirror. Oh well, he was only going to be there for one night. Sleep eventually finds its way to Allen and he rests for the first time since he left London.
Morning comes accompanied by the crows of roosters in the farm steads just outside the city. Allen rises from his bed and wakes Jinx.
“You ready to go,” he asks.
With a rather loud bark in response, Jinx jumps up from her rest and her stub of a tail wagging. They both leave the in, viewing the passed-out patrons in the bar as they do. They make their way back to the harbormaster. Once they arrive in the harbor, Allen spots the harbormaster sitting in a chair just outside his station, a pipe hanging from his jaw.
“Morning, is the ship ready to depart,” Allen asks the man.
“Aye it is,” he replies, “They were goin’ to leave early but I managed to ‘suade them to wait just a bit ‘till you got here.”
“You’re welcome. Oh, and it’s the ship o’er there. The Balagore.”
As Allen is about to board the ship he is greeted by a familiar face leaned over the railing of the ship. Father Henry. Feeling slightly disgruntled by the priest following him, he marches up the catwalk to the deck of the ship.
“You’re late,” Father Henry shouts out to Allen.
“Or you were early,” Allen shouts back in response, not being able to resist the snark. As soon as Allen steps foot onto the deck of the ship the catwalk is pulled away. Men, below on the dock, start untying the ropes holding the ship. And they were off, Allen, Jinx, and Father Henry.
“So, what made you get on the ship to America,” Allen asks.
“Well, after telling the priests here about what had happened on the road,” Henry began, “I told them of a possible witch problem in Jamestown. I told them that it was imperative that I go because our brothers in America probably don’t have any experience with actual witches.”
“Ah, I see. So, the truth is that you wanted to come along and see if you could help?”
“Half the truth. You wouldn’t be able to face a witch without my help, yet anyway.”
“What do you mean ‘yet’?”
“Well, during our last escapade with a witch I sensed something I’ve never felt before.”
Allen just looks at the Father with a curious look in his eyes.
“I can’t explain it. The only thing I can gather from it is this; You may not love God but he sure does have a plan for you.”
“I’d rather not think of such things. My strength is my own, not that of a malevolent slave master.”
Allen’s words cut Henry deep. Allen could see this. He puts one solid hand on the Father’s shoulder and gives it a slight squeeze, almost as if giving a non-verbal apology.
“How’re ye two doin’,” some stranger shouts from the helm.
Both men turn and look to where the voice came from. Having to crone their necks to see the man standing at the top of the stairs.
“Just fine, sir,” Allen says, “and who might you be?”
“I’m the cap’n o’ this here ship, Mr. Thorn,” the man says as he descends the staircase.
“Ah, well it’s nice to meet you,” Henry says, “I’m Father Henry and this is Allen Walker.”
“Well, good to meet the two o’ ya,” Mr. Thorn says, “just like to meet all the patrons of ma vessel.”
“Are there more than just the two of us,” Allen asks.
“Aye, there’s a group of women that boarded before the both o’ ya,” he says as he points to a group of women that are standing at the bow of the ship.
Allen isn’t quite sure how he didn’t notice them before, but now that he believes he knows one of them, having olive colored skin and silky black hair. Allen tries to hide his face of shear shock and disbelief. Both Allen and Henry look to each other and nod.
“Listen, Captain, one of those women is not normal,” Allen says.
“Oh, really, how so?”
“The one with the olive skin is a witch.”
“And how do ya know that? And how, she’s only got one arm.”
“It’s true, we killed her not a week ago,” Father Henry chiming in.
“Look here, the two o’ ya. You two seem like decent folk but I don’t want any issues on ma ship. You understand?”
“Yes, sir, of course,” Father Henry says.
“Alright, good. Now if you are worried about that little lass, then you can be. But I don’t want any bloodshed unless it comes down to someone dyin’. Got it?”
“Yes,” Allen says allowing a hint of his irritation show through his voice.
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