The flames ate eagerly at the stable, reaching for the black, midnight sky. The little girl clung to me as we all panted, watching the smoke rise higher and higher into the sky.
Someone knew we were here.
I pulled my eyes away from the horrid fire, noticing something shifting in the woods. Several had saw what I had seen as well. A flash of a sword, glimmering in the darkness. My heart lurched in my stomach, and cries went out, "RUN! Run!"
Shadows garbed in black lept from the murk of the underbrush, armed with weapons, some on horseback. We all scattered this way and that frantically. I could hear a woman screaming, but couldn't turn back, trying to keep at Nellie's side, scooping the small, stumbling girl into my arms. Nellie was faster than I had predicted, and was soon disappearing farther and father into the forrest. I heard a few people following behind us as well, and glanced over my shoulder, seeing several of our fellow spies dropping back from us.
"Nellie!" I yelled out. She slowed her pace so the others could catch up-it would be best if some of us stuck together, though still many of these people were still strangers to me. Arrows began to rain on us from behind and we dropped to the ground, attempting to dodge them. I was too slow, one catching me in the shoulder blade. Yelping, tears blurred my eyes as I lay on the ground, blood trickling down my back. The assault of arrows ceased for a moment in time, and we all stumbled to our feet, racing through the darkness of the wood.
The thunder and shouts of the enemy faded, like they had given up on us. Exhausted from the endless running, our legs were trembling and heavy panting filled the area. I fell to my knees, getting dizzy.
"Katrina!" gasped Nellie, noticing the arrow protruding from my back. She rushed to my side. "Here, let me help you."
I didn't fight her, laying out on the ground. She began pulling at the arrow gently. I cried out, biting my lip too hard, blood seeping onto my tongue. "Do it quickly!" I urged.
"I'm sorry if I hurt you...," Nellie said apologetically, then yanking out the arrow in one swift motion. I closed my eyes tightly, holding back a yell. Others approached, beginning to clean my wound.
Morning light crawled over the horizon, cascading through the leaves. I sat up slowly, my shoulder still aching from the night before. The little girl was still sleeping, curled up by my side with her doll in her arms. I stroked her hair, smiling, gazing about our makeshift camp. Nellie was awake, pacing about on watch.
"Where are we?" I said investigating the area further. Nellie jumped, turning to me. Fright crept into my voice, we were terribly lost and in danger. "What are we going to do?"