SoK drabbles

Little moments or alternate universes of 'Slayer of Khusta', a story of mine which will be published as a comic. These are usually me writing out scenes to make it easier to adapt into comic form, and will be uploaded with the pages/scenes in the future.

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3. Exiled

Fraizer must've been on the run for hours now. He was counting the heavy steps his steed was taking, and noticed a slow in the rhythm, and a hitch in the beast's breath. Davok was getting tired, and they had to stop to rest soon. They were in a dense evergreen forest, snow beginning to fall in a blizzard. It was late in the night, and pitch-black. The dull atmosphere was too much, after the stress of what occurred hours earlier.

The harpy was exiled from his town, and given until nightfall to leave. The cause was extremely petty, in his eyes, and outrageous in most of the townsfolks' eyes. Afterall, he did slay the dragon, didn't he? He was crowned and rewarded handsomely. He was a hero. However, the minotaur chief saw that his 'crime' of homosexuality is enough to get arrows shot at him. 'Ridiculous,' he thought, 'ridiculous ridiculous ridiculous.'  Disgusting, horrible, vile treatment after such a brave act. 'That dragon would've dug the bunkers up if it weren't for me,' he thought, 'you'd be dead if it weren't for me.' 'But not just me,' he reminded himself, it was some others too. Yes, Kuran, and Anthonney, and Taka too, and a few others who's names have already left his mind. A painful reminder. 

Quite literally. An arrow hit him in the side, and he completely ignored it when the initial agony dulled in the numb frost. Fraizer groaned upon remembering it. It wasn't fatal, and the bleeding was controllable, it just hurt like hell, and he knew he'd have to be careful removing it. His train of thought was interrupted again. Heavy pants and rumbles. Davok's exhausted, they have to stop for the night, they're far enough from Khusta now.

Fraizer pulled the reins to signal Davok to stop moving, taking camp underneath in a dense part of the forest with little snowfall, and the dragon slowed to a well-deserved stop. The beast dropped to rest on his underside quite heavily and eagerly, still catching his breath. The bounce caused the arrow to hitch in place, and Fraizer hissed, although Davok didn't seem at all bothered. The harpy carefully stood up from the saddle and removed it from the dragon's back. Every movement was hell, the last thing he wanted to do was knock the arrow's body and cause more damage. He gritted his teeth as he took out a tarp and laid it on the fresh shallow snow, and sat down with a thud.

A thick cloth in hand and another in his mouth, he took hold on the arrow's body. He established a firm grip, and made a moment of quick prayer as if it'll help, before yanking the arrow out, perhaps with too much force. He could've wailed, an awful sound came out, muffled by the cloth. Davok growled in protest to the noise, and Fraizer agreed. Too loud, could attract some kind of predator. The harpy hissed as he wrapped the cloth in his hand around his waist. 'It would've been better if I knew how to do shit like this,' he thought. 'I doubt that was how you deal with an arrow injury. Too late now.'

In some sort of macabre comfort,  the harpy collected some sticks and moss from the forest surroundings, and dug a small pit in the snow. It took some doing, but soon a fire was crackling away. A welcome warmth against the biting cold. He only had some bread on him - a parting gift from Vincent - and despite the great need for more food as a comfort, he knew he couldn't hunt even squirrels with a hole in his side. As such, Fraizer settled for frozen bread. Better than nothing.

Afterwards, Fraizer was left staring at the flickering fire. His side still ached, and his head pounded in migraine, but he sat almost as if content. Slowly, reality checked up on him. He gazed at Davok, now fast asleep, somehow comfortable in the freezing cold. A distinct feeling of loneliness. Instinctively, Fraizer reached into large bag attached to Davok's saddle, and pulled out Kuran's cloak. It soaked up Davok's body heat like a sponge, and was extremely warm to the touch. The harpy let out a heart-broken purr and held the cloak close to his body, as if it would kill him to let go. He realised the scent of his friend is leaving the cloak, the last trace of his friend he has.

And it hit, almost suddenly. With his best friend dead and another having left him, with being exiled and his home gone, Fraizer realised he truly had nothing at this point. He only had Davok, who to be fair IS good company, but that's it. The dragon would be fine without Fraizer, but it didn't work the other way round.

He let out a sob, almost like a bark. Davok twitched his ear to the sound, but didn't rise to it. And the harpy just cried, and wailed. Alone, after everything was going so well. Dream job, dream home, dream friend. Things were looking up and Kuran would point out how Fraizer's depression was getting better. But no more of that now, no nothing. He realised he had nothing to lose. What's the point.

It was a miserable realisation, having nothing. Fraizer couldn't really understand what he did to deserve this fate, either. He organised to rid of the one thing that caused damage to his home town, and in succeeding he lost his best friend and got exiled. Is he that bad? That unimportant? That much of a fuck-up?

The harpy collapsed on his side, and it was another hour or two before he fell asleep from exhaustion, still holding the cloak tightly to his chest, the fire dying away, defeated by the icey wind. The heavy feeling in his chest never left him in the morning or the weeks afterwards. It was only downhill from here.

 

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