A Land of Yearning

Imaginative / creative writing goes here.

A Land of Yearning

Postby Alca » Fri Jan 23, 2015 11:29 am

It's been way too long since I last wrote anything. Thanks for reading

Amidst the endless prairie there raced a small buggy. At the wheel of the buggy there sat a young man in his mid-twenties. He had rough, unkempt hair and wore an intrepid expression on his face. Around his shoulders he wore an tattered brown coat that came down to his knees. He kept a revolver by his side, next to an ammo pouch that had been strapped around his belt.

I'm hungry... he thought, gripping the steering wheel as he accelerated. He had been driving for at least five hours, and still, there wasn't a single town in sight. He was almost ready to call it a day when a tiny black speck emerged in the distance. He raced ahead and anxiously watched as it grew closer and closer. Soon enough, the speck revealed itself to be a large town bordered by stone walls. He brought the buggy to a stop as he reached the gate and approached on foot. A slender looking man appeared from a nearby guard-post and waved at him.

"Hello, my name is Rauher," the traveler spoke as he neared the guard.

"A traveler? Well, you're certainly welcome here! It's been a while since we've seen any outsiders."

"That's very generous. I should only need to spend one night. I need to stock up on provisions too."

"One night is fine. There are plenty of stores around here, you'll be able to find everything you need."

The guard waved to one of his co-workers and the steel gate was lifted up.

"Come in. I'll ask some men to take your buggy somewhere safe. Would you like me to give you a tour?" Asked the guard as they entered the town.

"No, that's quite all right. I'd prefer to explore myself. Thanks for the offer."

The guard nodded and waved him off, before returning to his duties.

Now then thought Rauher, where should I start?. The town was even bigger than he had anticipated. The streets were lined with hotels and shops which stretched far out into the distance. The path split up in points and it was almost like traversing a maze. Perhaps he should of asked for a tour after all. As he walked past the shops he peered into the windows to check the goods. The prices were appalling, he wondered how any of the citizens could afford to eat. They clearly managed somehow. As he looked around he noticed everyone was wearing fine clothing and expensive jewels. It was as if the town had no concept of poverty. Amidst everything, he couldn't help but feel like the odd one out.

Must be nice... he thought, turning away from the shop and continuing his search. Eventually he settled for a store on the corner of the street. The prices seemed marginally lower than those of its competitors, but he had little choice. As he entered one of the shop assistants welcomed him.

"Welcome to our store!"

Rauher nodded and began to look over the merchandise. He collected the cheapest food he could find - rabbit meat, tinned food and rice - then piled them onto the counter and took out his coin purse.

I'm going to be bankrupt by the end of the day...

He walked out onto the street, cradling the items as he tried to keep them falling out of his arms. Perhaps he should of found a place to stay first...

"Excuse me?"

Startled, Rauher turned around to meet a young woman wearing a dark red dress. She was accompanied by two unarmed guards.

"Can I help you miss?"

"I have a message from the palace. They've requested that you join them for dinner."

"Me? Are you sure you have the right person?" Rauher asked incredulously.

"Of course."

"What about all this stuff? I can't carry it that far."

The woman clapped her hands and the guards took the items from him.

"You'll be sleeping in the palace tonight. I'll have these men take the items to your chambers. Now, if you'll follow me."

Rauher obeyed and silently followed her. The palace was hard to miss. It was without a doubt the tallest building in the entire town. Rauher almost felt insignificant as he looked up to it. It was decorated in splendid colours which shone brilliantly in the sunlight. He had never seen such a lavish building in his entire life. The young woman led him inside, then took him to the dining room.

The dining room looked just as he had expected. No expense was spared. Magnificent portraits of past rulers lined the room. A large golden goblet had been placed in the center of the table, surrounded by an assortment of jewels. As he looked up at the chandler, he could of sworn it was made out of diamond.

"Ah, you must be the traveler."

The voice came from a large man at the end of the table. He wore a lavish cape and silk clothing. Atop his head sat a magnificent golden crown.

"Don't be shy, sit down!"

Rauher nodded and sat down on a nearby chair.

"Thank you for inviting me, your highness. I have to say, I was surprised."

"My name is Alcott boy. Don't be so formal. We always treat our guests well here. You should look forward to dinner. I doubt you'll have ever seen such grand banquet before."

"I can't wait. I have to admit, I'm quite hungry."

The king let out a chuckle, then folded his arms and turned back to Rauher.

"I have to confess, I did have an ulterior motive. You're a traveler. You must see a lot of different countries, right?"

"Yes, that's right. I've spent most my life as a traveler."

"Well, it wouldn't hurt for you to mention us on your travels, would it? As you can see, we're fairly isolated around here. There's certain materials we can't get a hold of without trading. Certain rare gems and exotic food, to name a few."

"Of course, I'll make sure to mention your town. I'm sure there's places out there willing to trade."

"Excellent! That's what I wanted to hear. Now, relax traveler. The food is almost ready."

The king had not lied when he said it would be the grandest banquet he had ever seen. He could barely walk afterwards and decided to take a midnight stroll to burn off the meal.

Guess it serves me right... Maybe I should show more restraint...

He arrived at a bridge and leaned over, breathing deeply. He soon felt better, but just as he was about to leave he saw a figure moving around below. Rauher found a set of hidden steps towards the end of the bridge and descended. Without warning, he felt someone grab his collar.

"Who are you?!" The voice screamed.

"J-Just a traveler! I got curious."

"Wait, so you're not one of them?"

"One of them?"

"You know, from the upper level?"

"I only arrived this morning."

The man loosened his grip and Rauher started to rub his neck.

"I'm sorry. Please, if you'll follow me, I'll explain."

Rauher was led through several small alleyways until her reached a building illuminated by candle light. It was drastically different to the buildings on the surface. Some of the bricks were missing and the windows had been covered by planks of wood. The citizens that lived below the city all wore tattered filthy clothing. They had pale faced and looked as if they had been starved. Rauher turned to Lerin. Under the light he could see his features more clearly. He noticed his scruffy brown hair and blue eyes. He looked just as starved as everyone else.

"What's going on here?" Rauher asked.

"Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Lerin. I guess you could call us this town's 'dirty little secret.' While all the rich on the surface stuff themselves and walk around in diamonds and jewels, we're left to starve down here scavenging for whatever little scraps we can find."

"That's awful. Does everyone on the surface know about this?"

"Of course they do, but they keep it a secret from their children and pretend we're not even there. Just because we weren't born into the right family, we have to suffer like this... Which is why tomorrow, we're going to overthrow the king."

"And then what?" questioned Rauher as he folded his arms.

"I'm going to make sure no-one has to suffer again. I don't want to be the kind of king that sits on his fancy throne and stuffs himself with food while people have starve. We should all be equal. I'm going to fix this corrupt society..."

"I see. It'll be dangerous you know. They have more equipment and weapons."

"Maybe. But they've grown complacent. We spend every day fighting for our lives while they sit back with their mountain of riches. We're prepared to die for this cause, and I'll be damned if I let them have their way."

"Well, I was planning on spending the night, but it sounds like it'd be wise for me to leave now. Thanks for the warning. I'll be taking my leave."

"Wait, why don't you fight with us? You've fought before right? You can see that our cause is just."

"It's really not my place to get involved. I appreciate the situation you're in, but I'm just a traveler passing through."

"Of course... I just thought there might have been a chance. Well, wish us luck. You should leave as soon as possible. Oh, and if you ever happen to come to these parts again, drop by. I promise you, things will be different."

Rauher nodded, then waved before leaving. Once he was back on the surface, he crept to his chambers and collected his supplies. He wasn't able to carry all of it, so he only took the essentials. However, there was still the matter of his buggy. He had never asked where the guard had moved it to. He'd have to visit the guard-post and hope someone was still awake. When he eventually arrived, the same guard he had met when arriving approached.

"Traveler, we meet again. What can I do for you?" he asked with a puzzled expression.

"Could you please show me where you took my buggy?"

"Leaving so soon?"

"Something came up. Now if you would..."

"Of course, of course."

The guard led him to a large warehouse nearby the gate and unlocked the front doors. The buggy had been covered by a yellow canvas and was sitting at the back.

"One more thing," Rauher said as he slid off the canvas and started to pack away the supplies, "you should probably leave tonight if you value your life."


Rauher flicked the ignition and accelerated out onto the street, then slipped out of the gate. He took one last look at the town as it withdrew into the distance.

That town is never going to change... Is it?

In the middle of a snow-filled prairie there stood a large town. A magnificent palace was situated towards the back and overlooked the other buildings. It was painted in a variety of radiant colours which reflected the light brilliantly.

The throne room of the palace was equally impressive. Expensive ornaments lined the tables and the walls were filled with impressive portraits. In the center of the room there sat a large man with neat brown hair and blue eyes. He wore a golden crown and silk clothing.

"Lerin, your highness. The banquet is ready."

The voice came from a serving girl carrying a tray of drinks. Lerin rose up and followed her into the dining room.

"Whenever people see birds flying through the sky, it's said that they get the urge to go on a journey.".

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Re: A Land of Yearning

Postby Raymond » Fri Jan 23, 2015 9:27 pm

Good read Alca. I enjoyed it. I feel like you could easily make a short anime out of this. In a way it sort of reminds me of Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic with all the poverty and riches being so segregated. I hope you consider continuing it, I would like to read what happens next.
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