The Last Of Days- Jessica
What can I say about that winter? That we starved? That we dug more graves than we could count? How about those who lost limbs to frostbite? Shall I list their names? No, all I can say is that we did what we had to, that we fought for bitter life. Be it a fool’s will, a warrior’s spirit, a kick in the teeth to fate’s cruel joke- we survived. Not many of us survived, but we ground our teeth and endured the storm’s wrath, fighting for our lives every step of the journey. One day in particular gave me a reason to keep going.
With Tuvia out on a patrol, and minimal guards around the town, a contingent of bandits saw their opening. The thunder of hooves on snow reverberated through the roads, and I immediately dropped what I was doing to take refuge behind a pile of snow that lay on someone’s porch. Riders cane thundering through the city, killing any and all of the people that were unlucky enough to be out in the open. The carnage was too much for my mind to take in, and I cowered, I screamed, I lost control of myself, reverting to the most primal human terror.
Screams give hiding spots away, and they found me on that porch. One of them took hold of my arm, meaning to lead me to his horse, but, spurred on by horror, I took hold of my tiny dagger that I kept on me, meaning to drive it into his skull. He saw this coming, and immediately knocked the puny blade from my hand, then slapped me across the cheek, knocking me to the snow.
My ears rang, my head hurt, I was coughing up blood. But I would not give up, yet even as I attempted to stand, I saw Tuvia’s warband return, and an arrow embedded itself into the bandit who had taken ahold of me. Hurriedly, I stood and ran to find victims who could have been saved.
The street seemed so much longer than I remembered, or perhaps time’s speed seemed to be halved. Yet the entire length of the street was strewn with bodies of those who did not hide, those who were unaware. Among them was a familiar woman, one who I had met in the foroest before the winter began. Her face was torn off, the snow around her was pure red, and all I could do was mourn her, for she was my cousin, and it took me that long to realize it. . .