An Unfortunate Adventure! #freewritemadness: Day Three

Day Three of #freewritemadness is upon us, and today’s prompt was – armband.

When I first saw the prompt this morning, whilst staring at the phone with my bleary eyes, because I’m a Steemit addict and need to check these things before I even crawl out of bed, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it. Just needed to implement it somehow. And I finally found an opening near the end of the chapter! Hehe.

At the moment I’m feeling quite positive. To the stage I want to go back over the current three chapters and refine them, even though I’m not intending on even doing anything with them. But, no! Bad @kaelci. This month is just for writing. Polish later.

Today’s chapter wasn’t as large as yesterday’s, and I did struggle to end it. But that’s the story of my life. I can ramble on forever and never quite come to an ending. Every time I try to end something, it just seems so abrupt. But, I suppose that’s what endings are, right? Abrupt! I would like to be a bit smoother though.

I think this chapter holds the current most times I’ve written ‘Katéa’ so far. Mostly because there are so many females in the chapter and I struggle to differentiate.

Wordcount for today is: 1895
Total wordcount so far is: 6107

 

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CHAPTER THREE

Katéa closed her eyes and gulped the entirety of the questionable liquid in a long, continuous slurp, and hoped that by the time she reached the bottom of the bottomless mug it would all be over, that she would wake up in the scrub with one of those cursed lights hovering and humming over her fallen body. At least it didn’t taste as bad as she feared; it was like drinking pure honey. It was thick, syrupy, overly sweet, and was a struggle to swallow, but it didn’t burn her throat like the last mead she had dared to try. That concoction had been watery and was more of a salad dressing than anything else. A very sharp, vinegary salad dressing. This beverage, despite the colouring and floaties, was quite tasty. Her lips met the golden glitter the pixie had left behind —the pixie dust, the stranger had called it— and she near melted into her seat.

Good gravy! That was the most pleasurable thing her tastebuds had ever had the joy of enjoying! Each fleck was an intensely flavoured sugar granule that ‘popped’ as they met her tongue. It was as though chocolate and fairy floss intertwined together and had a lovechild infused with the delicate hint of a glacé cherry. Each ‘pop’ tingled down her throat and spread warmth through her body, and she shivered as the pleasurable heat embraced every single one of her pores.

The heat transformed into a blazing fire that burned across both body and mind, and the mug fell from her hand, clattering upon the table. Her face beaded with sweat and she raised a hand to wipe her brow, but her movements were slow and sluggish. The mere motion of lifting her arm was as tiring as… there was nothing to compare it to; this was as unique as a damned pixie rubbing her golden arse on the edge of a mug. What did that feel like? She giggled. Had it warmed her tiny, little butt cheeks?

The small elf-like woman looked worried, her big green eyes spiralling into oblivion the longer Katéa stared into them, and her soft voice was a strange comfort as she at last said, “Draven, I don’t think she’s had pixie dust before,” and hopped down from the chair.

“Where are you going?”

The elf nodded at Katéa. “I have an inkling is all. This whole scene reminds me of when Quint first stumbled in.”

Draven cocked an eyebrow and snorted, “That gutless milksop?” He shook his head. “Nay, I don’t think so, Nessie. This one is well-blooded compared.”

“Oh!” Nessie stopped and offered Katéa a timid smile. “What was that you said to Grissom? Something about dragging a queen? Are you a noble?”

Speechless, Katéa shook her head, and kept shaking it back and forth as wooziness flooded her. It felt quite nice, actually, the sensation of moving to and fro. It was delightful.

Waving an impatient hand, Draven rolled his eyes upward. “Go. It’ll be a while before the dust wears off.”

The wide-eyed elf nodded and walked away, the strands of her hair glinting radiantly beneath the candlelight, cascading as a golden waterfall that brightened the darkening room —dirty fingers clicked in front of her eyes, snapping her from the slow sway of the elf’s hair. She slowly looked at Draven, but could not focus on his face. There were three pixie creatures dancing above his head, a shining aura encasing each tiny, curvaceous body, and their little breasts jiggled as they pirouetted through the air. They were breathtaking; she could watch them all day.

“Miss?”

Fingers snapped loud once more. Her head swam. Her brain was swishing around her skull like a whirlwind; a fuzzy, unthinking whirlwind. Golden dust rained down from the little women and she followed the specks as they drifted through the air and fell atop Draven’s wavy, brown hair. She blinked. He was clear now, and was watching her with a clear amusement flashing behind his warm gaze. Tilting her head, she peered deep into his brown eyes; they were lit with an inner fire that reminded her of the tiger’s eye necklace she had once worn religiously. Sarah had gifted it to her on her thirteenth birthday. When did she stop wearing it and whatever had happened to it? What was Sarah doing right now? Warm tears slid down her cheeks. Would she ever see Sarah again? All those times she had called her a tree-hugging hippie; she had not meant it!

One of the pixies fluttered down and flashed forward and back as zippy as a classic roadrunner cartoon, her giggles as a spoon clinking against an empty glass as she spun circles similar to the whirlwind that lived in Katéa’s head. Draven glared at it and swatted it away, as callously as though it were a mere bug and not a miniature human. “Bothersome things,” he muttered.

“Maybe we should call them ‘peskies’!” Katéa exclaimed before erupting in a fit of laughter.

A half-smile crept over his face, but quickly disappeared as he peered behind her. A heavy perfume flooded the area, a stench almost as disagreeable as the occasional whiff of diarrhoea, and Draven leapt to his feet and snapped, “Come. You’ll be more comfortable by the hearth and I can’t look after you all the blasted day.”

His demeanour had changed so rapidly. Insulted, Katéa stood upright and retorted, “I can look after myself,” before teetering on her wobbly legs and latching onto his offered arm. “Ouch!” Something stabbed into her palm and she whipped her hand away, flailing as she steadied her flimsy body.

“So I see,” he smirked. “Bet ol’ Gruesome would agree.” He grabbed her arm and pulled her into the parlour. The sudden movement summoned a nausea in the pit of her stomach and she swallowed it down with a shuddering breath as he pushed her into one of the rocking chairs. A momentary sympathy wavered across his face before he glanced worriedly over his shoulder, approached the opposite wall and retrieved a crossbow and quiver from a bench beneath a giant wombat-looking-thing’s head, and hurried to the door she had once knocked at in hopes of finding a phone.

“Draven! My dear, it’s been too long.”

A woman’s husky purr swirled out from the pub, tavern, whatever-it-was, and Katéa’s nausea rose tenfold as the perfume strengthened. A buxom lady with vibrant auburn curls entered the room and Draven’s shoulders slumped as he slowly turned around, his smile appearing forced as he slung the quiver onto his back, revealing the offending item that had stabbed into her hand when she had tried to steady herself. It was a brown armband set with symmetrical red stones and covered with long, pointy animal teeth. She shuddered.

“Just on my way out —Griz needs another boar for tonight,” he glanced over at her. “And I need more coin.” He slammed the door as he exited.

“Impossible!” The woman huffed. She spun about, her curls swirling about her heavily made-up face, and narrowed her eyes as she spied Katéa. The exaggerated upset of moments ago was swiftly replaced with a warm and welcoming smile as she sashayed towards the fireplace. “A new face! It’s always so lovely to see a new face. Hello, dear.” She offered a low curtsy, revealing cleavage as deep as the abyss. “I’m T’rese, but most in there,” she motioned towards the bar, “They call me Tweetie,” she giggled. “Because my cheer and joy sound as sweet as morning bird-tweet!”

Katéa swallowed down the rising bile as Tweetie T’rese’s perfume enveloped her, as the woman sat on the other rocking chair and touched her arm. Why were these people so touchy-feely? She whipped away, certain that she was now forever tarnished by the nauseatingly sweet perfume that coated the woman’s body, and began to cough uncontrollably. The gaseous tendrils wove into her nostrils and met the repressed nausea that lurked dangerously close to her throat —she couldn’t take it anymore— leaping out of the chair, she tripped over her wobbling feet as she struggled to open the door, and only just made it outside, vomiting over the railing into the bushes below. Ugh, it smelt of honey!

“Oh, dear! Are you alright?”

T’rese appeared beside her and placed a gentle hand upon her shoulder, casually kneading with over-familiar fingertips. The ground rumbled again, just as it had by the trees earlier that morning, and Katéa clung to the railing, hoping that the old planks they stood upon could withstand both the quake and their combined weight.

Clapping her hands together, T’rese seemed unperturbed as she happily exclaimed, “Oh, fantastic! They must be back!”

“Who must be back?”

“Why, the dragons, of course,” she paused. “Oh, my poor dear, you look as pale as the moon. Oh! What’s that?” Katéa shrank back as the woman leaned forward and thrust her chest into her face. “Ah,” she winked, returning upright. “The pixies had their way, I see. Nevermind. You’ll feel right again in no time. The fresh air will do you some good.”

T’rese ran a trailing hand across Katea’s shoulders and flounced down the stairs, her curls bouncing down her back —wait, dragons? Well, why not. Pixies, elves, and dragons. It all made sense. Kind of. She licked her lips, not really wanting to call after the woman and ask for clarification. No wonder Draven had been in such a hurry to leave. That lady was obviously starved for attention. He didn’t have to be such an arse about it though.

A squeal echoed in the distance as the setting sun descended behind the autumnal forest, transforming the trees into a fiery blaze that danced across the horizon beneath the darkening skies. Had it been an entire day already? She shook her head. It didn’t seem possible. How could she possibly still be here, awake within this dream? The mead and the golden-arsed pixie hadn’t been the answer; maybe it was sleep she needed. Perhaps if she slumbered within the dream, she would wake up in reality once more. But, what if this wasn’t a dream? What if she was stuck here forever? That elf-lady, Nessie, from within the depths of her pixie-addled haze, had said something about someone named Quint. Maybe he knew something about the lights. She lowered her eyes and cringed as she saw the brown liquid spattered across the otherwise green shrubberies, the honeyed liquid that had once been inside her stomach. Even if this Quint fella did know something about them, he was evidently still here and not back home, so wouldn’t even know how to get back. Or maybe he didn’t want to.

The dead phone weighed down her pocket and a longing coursed through her. The whole world was once at her fingertips. Her friends, family, a thousand unknown people who drank in her every word and loved every little thing she shared with them… which was everything —those people knew every minute of her life— who could she talk to now?

She wrapped her arms around her chest, hugging herself as tight as she could manage. No-one else would hug her now. She had never felt so lonely in her entire life.

 

(An Unfortunate Adventure header made by me! Courtesy of an image from Pixabay, and images from Vidar Nordli-Mathisen, Johny Goerend, Alan Labisch, Erol Ahmed on Unsplash!)