Evermist is a new, serial science fiction piece being released as part of my, ‘Tales From The New Universe’ series. New episodes will be released every week over at the Evermist site! Don’t miss out on a single episode! Add it to your reader, bookmark it, hit ‘favorites’ – whatever you prefer, just don’t miss out! (and hey, why not tell your friends about it? Come on! Please? Pretty please?!)
Chapter Seven hits tomorrow, but you can catch up today if’n you’re interested.
Elias folded his good white shirt and placed it in the duffel atop his other worldly possessions he was allowed to take with him; two pairs of pants – one black, one dark blue, small clothes and undershirts, three pair of long underwear his mother had made special for the trip, two long, woolen shirts and the jackets to match the pants, the slingshot he’d carved from the tree branch that had caught his eye as being ‘perfect’ when he was only ten years old, all three books that he had bought with his own money, and the letters from his summer away from Anise tucked away with a red ribbon to keep them together and safe. For Induction today, he wore the gray suit with his black shirt. He knew he’d be issued a uniform as soon as he arrived, but he still wanted to look presentable at the gates.
The lightwagon hummed as the driver navigated the streets of Valles. Elias sat in the coach, arm resting on the window sill as he watched the city pass by. No one else had flagged the driver down, so he rode alone and it suited his mood.
The winding road from the hills down to the lower city held little beyond the normal city clamor for him to concentrate on but it was better than the alternative. He watched as the fine coats with tails of the Gentry of the Hills gave way to the rougher, woolen coats of the lower city. The colors had always surprised him, even when he was a child and would take trips with his parents to the lower city to catch a boat to Southport, where his Grandparents lived. Yellows and blues and reds were the colors of the coats here – but always bright. The Hills, everything seemed somehow duller and drab.
Still shocked, Elias ran his hand over the stubble on his head. Looking to Narut he gave a small smile to see the other doing the same thing. He and Narut, it seemed, would be bunk mates for the duration of their stay at Fort Sudren. Both had been given haircuts and uniforms and now waited for their instructor along with a dozen other members of L Company, which had been split into 3 squads for training.
Elias stepped into the commissary and looked around. Narut stood up from a table against the left hand wall and gave a wave and a smile. Elias returned both before stepping into line behind some other conscripts waiting for their midday meal.
At the edge of the table where a server stood ladling food onto trays, a young woman in brown smiled at Elias and handed him an empty metal tray, one that was only slightly bent. It was also quite clean and dry, unlike some of the others he could see.
Sergent Fesh’s voice boomed, quickly followed by the sound of a dozen rifles going off. Elias had one eye closed as he squeezed the trigger on his repeater and saw the puff of smoke on the other side of the range where the bullet hit the target. He knew it was in the center again. Everyone said he was the best shot, and he didn’t believe it at first, but Fesh told him he was a natural and that… That he -was- starting to believe.
He brought the lever down, bringing another bullet into the chamber but he didn’t squeeze the trigger again just yet. You learned early to never fire until Fesh told you to.
Elias and Narut passed through the South Gate and down the walk towards the Pier District. A wall encircled the Pier District, intended to act as a first line of defense in the case of an invasion, but really it was to keep drunken sailors and Conscripts from invading the city on a bender, or so Sergent Fesh had said.
Conscripts were not allowed in the city once their training had begun. No one had said why, but Elias assumed desertions were lower when there was nowhere for the Conscripts to run.
Chapter Seven hits tomorrow afternoon – don’t miss out!