Mists of Time

As the mists swirled around them they joined hands and staggered forwards....or was it backwards?

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23. Being Tracked

Will had got up really early to go out and hunt some rabbits in the wood. His mother and father wouldn’t have been pleased that he was in the woods on his own. His father worked for the Earl tending the forest and looking after the deer. They lived in a small shack in the middle of the woods. Will was 11 years old and like most lads his age was expected to help his father do the work.  

The woodlands around here had become dangerous in the past few months as a quarrel between the earl of Bouderstone and his cousin the Duke of Bradfield had become worse. Will didn’t know what it was about, he’d heard it was something to do with a cathedral that the Earl was planning to build, but didn’t know why that should cause trouble. Over the last few months the trails around here had been full of the Duke’s men who were out to ambush the Earl’s soldiers. 

Within 10 minutes of leaving their shack he’d skirted a clearing when he saw two men sat around the fire. He didn’t know them, it was always safer to lurk in the shadows rather than confront anyone. Then he’d heard the horses. He saw that they wore the Duke’s colours and so hid deep in the woods. No one would find him here, it was his territory, and he knew every path. 

He was just checking a trap when he’d heard the movement. They weren’t heavy enough to be mens, but he ducked down anyway. From his vantage point he saw a sight that was totally weird. There were 4 shapes. As they got nearer he saw that there was a tall youth in front followed by three others. He moved slightly in order to get a better view. They were wearing funny clothing, nothing like he’d ever seen before. As they passed him he nearly gave a yell when he saw the face of the last figure. It looked towards him. He held his breath so that he couldn’t be seen. The last person had features like no one he’d ever seen. The face was darker than normal and he noticed that the eye shape was different, sort of cat like. Whilst the others had looked frightened there was calmness about this one.  

Where had they come from he wondered. He didn’t know them; they didn’t have horses and so must have come from quite close. They were also wearing the strangest clothes. They had bright colours and some had words written on them, although he couldn’t make out what they said as he hadn’t been to school. If he could however, quite what he would have made of iScout and North Face heaven knows. He had never seen the like of them before. All his instincts had taught him to stay away from trouble or strangers, but there was something about the last figure, the one with the eyes and dark complexion, that made him want to find more. He followed them from a distance he was interested to see who they were and why they were here. 

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