A letter to the past

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A letter to the past

Post by Kaz'Kali on Sun Feb 01, 2015 1:05 pm

Kaz’Kali crouched down in the blue shade of a tall palm tree. The cool breeze off the ocean glided across him carrying the scent he came to love. A salt smell mixed with what Kaz would describe as shrimp tails filled his nose. He inhaled slowly and deeply. Echo Isles.

A small fire was crackling, the flames small but radiating intense heat. A barbed gill trout with a stick shoved in its mouth hung over the fire. It sizzled and popped. It was almost ready. Near him was palm fronds in a heap. There was a worn spot in the center signaling that this is where he slept the previous night.

He had a small piece of paper that looked to be torn from something as it had a part of a hand painted pattern in the corner. He moved over to check the fish, poking it to feel the body and check the softness. He licked his fingers and turned the fish so that it now heated the other side.

He pulled a charred stick from the fire, it had a pointed tip. He blew off any excess charcoal and tested it on his forearm. He dragged his shield over to use it as a writing surface. His eyes lingered on a small diagonal carving on the side of his shield:

“L was here”

His mind flashed back.
---------------------------------
Kaz had just turned eleven. It was a cold evening with an orange tinge to the light as the sun set over the village of Echo isles. He did this walk countless times but this would be the last. The hut used to be a gathering place for many senior female members of the tribe. He would miss the days that light and life spilled out across the village. The sounds of laughter and storytelling.

Around forty trolls, most of them female lined the path to the hut. Pieces of fabric draped over their faces, low wails emitted from behind. They all sat holding different items, some Loas others had basins of offerings. The sounds quieted down once Kaz came into view. The shrouded heads all turned to look at him.

His body rung with a intense numbness. His mind swirled with thoughts, fears, what ifs. Where was he going to go now? Was he cursed? Was he the reason they all were taken back to gods? Should he just run?

He walked down the corridor of mourning trolls towards the hut. Hands darted out grabbing his arms, some falling down to his feet. Pleas of his name and promises that Zujera loved him like a son. He pushed through the gauntlet of mourners which seemed like eternity. He had hand prints covering him, some crude shapes were drawn as well. He tried to fight it but the tears began.

He made it to the entrance of the hut.

It was dim inside, candles now dotted the inside perimeter. Different dishes and bowls had incense smoke billowing out into the small tent. Smells he would always come to associate with loss. His young frame shaking in the door, afraid to lay eyes on the bed in front of him. He lingered for a moment before one of the elders appeared behind. A gentle hand led him to the bedside of Zujera.

She laid sunken into the bed, her eyes glazed white were barely cracked open. Her chest slowly rose and fell. Kaz stared at her face frozen in silence. A whisper in his ear told him this was his last chance to say something, Kaz felt the elder leave the hut. He was now alone.

He paused until he knew he could get a word out, his young voice still slightly cracked.

“...Zujera….Zujera, Its me. Its your Kaz.”

At the sound of his voice, it looked like Zujera inflated with a breath of life.

“Ahhh, Kaz. My boy…” She tried to sit up to see him but she was too weak.

“Get closer, I want to see you.”

Kaz did as he was told and leaned forward into the soft light. He hesitated but slowly put his hand out and laid it on her cold thin skinned hand. They took a moment and just looked at each other. She broke the silence and quietly spoke.

“Do you know that the best day of my life was when I found you?” She smiled at him weakly, her eyes still had that mischievous glint that Kaz knew all too well. “You know that don't you Kaz. My boy.” Her hand turned to squeeze his fingers.

He just looked at her tears soaking his cheeks.

“Dont leave me Zujera. This is it, you are it. I will be alone.” He shuddered his head dropping and looking straight at the floor. Tears fell like thick raindrops into the dry soil.

“Look at me Kaz. I can't change what happens to us, I am old. I lived many moons, I raised a boy who I am proud of. You will be a great fighter for our people.” Her arm lifted and pointed to something propped up onto the wall. It had a small item wrapped up in a soft piece of linen on the top of it. “Bring that here.”

He did as he was told. It was a shield. It was about the same size as his eleven year old self. He struggled to slide it over but he did, propping it against the bed.

“I know you never met him, but this shield was what my Kunraz carried. He was a brave warrior for the Darkspear and he was so good to me Kaz. Oh how he would of loved you.” She coughed sharply and winced. “Wrapped up in the fabric, Its a pipe. That used to be mine. My father carved it for me when I turned of the age. Don't you dare use it until you are a true warrior of the people” She gave a slight smirk. "Don't want no boy smoking from that"

He held a sculpted pipe that was of a panther clutching a skull. He had that as well to this day.

"I promise."

He heard rustling behind him and he knew that it was time for him to leave.

“Dry your tears Kaz. This is not the time for sadness. I need you to be strong. Promise me that you will be strong.”

Kaz nodded to her. He felt a soft touch on his shoulder from the troll who entered behind him. He lifted the shield with both hands and peering from above it he said his final words to Zujera. “Thanks for being my mom”

Zujera closed her eyes at the words. Kaz was lead out into the blur of memories of the evening. A swirl of mourners embracing him and leading him every direction.

---------------------------------

Kaz snapped out of his thoughts, still staring at the crude carving on his shield. His nose caught the whiff of burning and he looked at his now blackened fish.

“Ahh no!” he hurried to try and grab it off but it was to no avail. He stared at the crisped charred hunk. He threw it back into the sea.

He finally wrote on the paper.

“Zujera, Its your Kaz. Its been a year since I be visiting. I don't know why I decided to come here now, I guess something pushed me. I made you a fish but I let it ruin. I don't think you be needing it so much now but I will leave some flowers instead. Zujera, I be failing you. I am not a fighter. I am no warrior. I be disgracing your memory. I will not return here until I can make you proud. Please let the Loa's rest your spirit.

-Kaz”


He turned from the fire and laid the note on a carved Loa headstone. Old dried flowers littered it. The stone sculpture was now crooked from the years of rain hitting the sand. He rested his hand on the top of it, nodded his head.

He picked up his shield and began walking down the coast.
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Kaz'Kali

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Re: A letter to the past

Post by minstrelofmyths on Tue Feb 03, 2015 6:21 am

Kazzzzzzz! you poor thing. Sad
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