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The Learning Pier

A short story I wrote sometime ago.. wrote it awhile ago.. in HS, haha.

    The night was a humid one, alone and silent like the secret stowaway girl kept concealed in a clipper ship bound for free land. I can taste the thickness of the air within my mouth, whirling about my tongue. The sound of chirping sparrows wanders my mind about. As I look on at the infinite reflective curves of the pond from my own personal pier.  I ponder about my future position as a Shanka villager. I ponder about what is expected of this “seemingly” ambitious individual genre of tribe. Of course, I am presuming we will be accepted among this tribe.
    “Cyb!” my mother interrupts, “Dinna is own the table.”
    My name is Cybil MacNia, I’m sixteen years old, a former member among the ancient Luats. For the past year or so, my family, including myself, have been searching far and wide, across and under these seven moons of ours for a new form of acceptance. Although we have been in need of supporting resources, I am optimistic in the idea that our nomadic ways have led us to venture and percept our world from various instinct-testing and captivating angles.
    These Luats, were quite the respected tribal village along our great South Wilimer region. The settlements were resourcefully laid on exceptional game ground all year round, while it’s counsel of arbiters gifted it’s people with good solace and integrity. The people willingly genuflected forth these wise leaders. They gave the shielding from outside threat like the mother goose shields her unborn from overhead swooping vultures. They wore long robes as green as the deepest shade within Wilimer’s forests, which also bared a long, wide black bar down their prime. These men gave out certain rules mandatory to live by, rules that if even bent the slightest length, may lead from such faiths as exile from South Wilimer, to penalties involving the dreaded (at least, the Luats dread it) death sleep. Certain rules were set for the fatally sick, as luck would have it, this attained to my very own father, Atticane MacNia. This man had a cancer in the lungs from which I haven’t the slightest idea of it’s origin. The high counselors eventually learned, in some way or another, about this and basically filed our family under: exile. We were to vacate our home, all that we knew, immediately, and permanently. Of course, no questions were asked.
    After over a year of drifting about South Wilimer, we have learned about a possible habitation for the family, a new tribe. We departed out of our temporary living hut and I gave a final farewell to my perfect little pier. We traveled about 20 miles north before the large village gates came into view. We can see the inhabitants standing on catwalks mounted beside the village walls. We weren’t so near as to interpret their facial expressions as we drew nearer with out back mounted belongings and personal possessions.
    “What do yah guys tink?,” asks my mother, as we slowly neared this strange civilization.
    “Dose some big ole’ doors,” I maturely respond.
    “Too sure about these people I am not,” father warned.
    The gates and walls seem to have been composed of a rich bamboo wood. Each separate pole appeared buffed and perfected to correspond with it’s adjacent one. The village’s watchtowers seemed to be formidably armed with elite class archers, staring down and adding to the alienate reaction towards our presence, along with the entire village population.
    We arrived at the gate’s massive mouth. It’s walls seemed more longer and monstrous at this point than before. Faces stared with little emotion as the gates were slowly pulled open by two tribesmen with large builds and war paint imprints on their faces. We gazed through these gates, studying all aspects or our new home.
    We wandered about fifteen feet inside, until the gates slammed shut after us. Our comfort worsened as we stood on the single spot. It seem like a thousand years and back before a large and stiff man strolled our way. He was muscular in build, with the brow of an enraged Taurus, all he needed was the steam blaring from his nostrils. His head seemed just as buffed as the village wall. He too wore black imprinted markings..
    “My name is Hata… to you folk it’s Chief Hata..”
My father glanced at the family in a swift  but rather slow movement, and immediately lowered one knee to the crunching pebbled dust, almost stumbling on the way down. We followed his lead almost immediately.
    “Riiiise…this is Shanka tribe. You will quickly get ’accustomed to dese regulations, or…well, you don wanna find out dose cons’quences..”
Through the first week, we really felt out of place. The customs of these people weren’t in extreme difference as of our people, but we did not feel a sense of welcome from our neighbors. Some young girls pointed and chuckled at my father as he fetched a pale of water from the well. My guess of their amusement was his limp he picked up from the cancer. It was very difficult for me to befriend any local girls, as they made sure to keep distance from me. My mother could not bargain too well with the local merchants at the market, some items seemed a bit excessive in price. Chief Hata kept a good eye on my father for some odd reason. He’d study him during errands around the village, like a lion waiting to pounce on an unsuspecting antelope.
    “Hata seems a bit curious, he does,” mentioned Father at the dinner table one night.
That seemed like the ultimate understatement of the day after describing the chief’s behavior. Both me and my mother, including my father I’m sure, grew weary and concerned as to Hata’s studying habits. I’m sure it was due to father’s health conditions.
I soon found out I was right on…
    Several weeks prior to our notice of Hata’s ways, we sat in our little round supper table, set for three. The night was one with a wild and raging storm.
    “Mama, pass the peppa please..,” I ask as I stare into my freshly hunted antelope thigh. She passes the pepper, when we startle ourselves out of our seats due to a monstrous slamming on our front door. I run several feet to answer, to my surprise I see the towering presence of our chief with one of his archers to his right, peculiarly, he had his hunting bow on hand. Hata didn’t even bend his massive head to acknowledge my presence, just yelled “Aticaaaane!” My father leaped off of his dinner chair and worked his limp to get him to the door as soon as was humanly possible. I noticed the fear my father had through his eyes.
    “You didn’t let me know about yor.. prollems..” he growled to Father.
    “Don tink about even denyin’ my woids, this tribe will not stand any sicknesses within it’s people, the way tings are..” I stood beside my father clueless but eager for what’s to happen next. To my utter shock and nightmare, Hata signaled his archer with a mere nod of the head and simply stepped off the door way. My father hollered his final plea as the archer raised his prepared bow and let the projectile pierce into my father’s chest. They both walked off casually.
    I yelled like I never had before that point. My mother looked on, still at the table with fork on hand. I noticed droplets run through her cheek as her eyes reddened and frown dropped lower by the moment. My father gave no sign of life as my mother ran to him and immediately checked his vitals. She slowly released her fingers and dropped her face right next to the arrow’s vertical rod, all I heard was muffled bawling. I fell on her back, forming a messy pile of agony and melancholy.
    We buried my father’s body near a small lake. We chose this lake because it had a small pier much like the one I’d sit and think at during our long but intriguing nomadic months. My father would sit with me in that pier and talk to me about life’s lessons and wonders. He’d also show me his vast knowledge of constellations as he single handedly pointed them out and gave them a name. We had our very own star, we named it Lucia.
     The family now consisted of only two women, unsure of their future. We decided to leave these cold hearted Shanka, but to be more on the safe side, we did this covertly. I mentioned to my mother I wanted to move to the pond where Father was buried, she responded that it was just too near to the Shanka village. She promised me a spot near another pond, far from the Shanka, instead.
    We are now back to living off our skills as survivors, away from the tribe. The way it’s been meant to be. We had to lose a very much loved one to figure this, but we did. We are now dwelling near a small pond, without a little pier, on the south end of Wilimer. I think of my beloved father very often, I miss the man very, very much. His loving nature and willingness to his family was irreplaceable. We’ll start building his little pier in the morning.

Comments

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