A vast fantasy story about prophecy, corruption, leadership and nature. The story is a work in progress, as is the name.
The tides were high, the rolls of white headed inward seen visibly from far out. The waves just kept rolling up along a seemingly endless arrangements of vines, pine and moss. Many of the roots spread outward from the bank, growing above and below the lapping water. The moon was waning, shooting its vague light through the ripples, echoing the infinite sky to the unknown sea, a reflection of the same, a mirror. The whole area was almost like a marsh, spreading out like an empty hand, the empty parts filling slowly with pooled water. Small ponds remained here for the entirety of the year, but were now engulfed by the high tide. Only a small plateau like hill remained, vacant of trees. It rose up a couple feet higher than most of the shrub-like canopies, which remained the only part of the trees not underwater. The clouds came quick and stole the moon, but light was still seen from the top of the hill.
A well built fireplace. Anchored on all sides by rocks no human could lift. The flames jumped upward in great distances towards the sky. The tips of the flame leaving stars of flames, headed up, red hot, turned to white, then drifting down. Around the rocks were woven strings and symbols, entwined together to create rudimentary animal figures and sea creatures. Bloody handprints scattered across the rocks around the fire. Along with other brown and red pigmented designs. It seemed like each time a flame rose out of the orange inferno heart it was born from, it popped, sending out embers the size of fists.
The flames were not there to celebrate alone, though. A cacophony of ancient drum beats and low pitched grunts echoed across the night. The beings wore strange furs draping off of their faces, shoulders and hips. A few circled the fire with skulls over their heads, hopping in an off rhythm with the drums. They were also shaped very strangely as well. All of them were broad shouldered, with limbs stretching down to the ground when they stood straight, about 6ft up. Their legs remained bent at the knees most of the time, creating for a swaggered walk and dance. Long necks stretched up into vicious, tiny faces. Black, bead like eyes peeked out as a mouth took up most of the face. The nostrils were almost none existent. Snarled, hung teeth spewed out each and every direction, ending in sharp or broken points. They were roaring, chanting, pacing and dancing. They spoke a rustic language that was somewhere between animal noises and throat talking. One of the larger ones was slapping his extremely large palms against the ground in anger, each time harder than the last. As they all circled the flames what could be seen of their eyes vibrated with the life blood of the sea and the fire. Inside each of their tiny pupils reflected a flame, and they each tried to match its flowing, mortal, dying dance. Yet still beating down to the endless and forever water. Their arms flailed above them each time they stepped, the palms extending high above the fire. A rumbling, overbearing roar was heard from deep within the crowd. Everybody except the drum beaters deserted the fire and what they were doing and ran to the shoreline. Along the shore line was a leaning wood built shed, barely the size to fit one of these creatures in. It was very poorly made, almost falling over. Inside of it was a very large amount of dried wood pieces, each piece reaching up to the chest of the beings. Surprisingly they were all able to carry it, and each took one of the blocks only to return to the fire, throwing it all on. Embers scattered everywhere, the bravest of the creatures grabbed the exiled red hot embers, rubbing them on their bodies, or crushing them in their fists. The flame rose higher than any before it. The moon crept out from behind a cloud to catch a glimpse of the ritual. But its light shone elsewhere, on the bank opposite of the small, isolated hill. The moonlight finally stopped on a large natural rock, arch rising high above the land. Here it rested, in the middle of the arch, and here the light stayed. Here it remained stationary.
"So we've all read it, I sat down last night and finally finished it." The man was small, round, and breathed very heavily before every noun. "Although, I just happened to be disappointed, he wrote nothing on how to take it, how to interpret what he saw. What good is foresight and vision if he doesn't even tell us what it means." There was a small round table in a small basement or bar. Around it sat a few men, each stern and attentive to the task at hand. In one corner sat a small counter, but no one was behind it, just rows and rows of liquor.
"I believe he doesn't even realize what this means, you don't have to be a genius Humphrey to realize that it all points precisely at the Neglected Isles, and how their time is coming to attack us." The man that spoke was obviously worn by age and in each sentence took the time to pause briefly after each word. He had blue eyes hidden behind a gray face that held a large, gray beard. Over his scalp was a small piece of cloth, a small anemone like design on the top. The one he called Humphrey rustled awkwardly in his chair, he ran his calloused hands through greasy hair that fell back over his eyes each time he spoke. He too sported a beard, but it was much smaller than the other man's and much less gray. He leaned his body as far over the table as he could and look around the table.
"No. Just no." He shook his head, as if to settle his answer in the cracks of his brain so it would stick. "Years, years and years and years. Generations has pasted without conflict or sight of anyone from up there. Almost everybody believe they've been invaded by the Puls or lost to that raging volcano that they're dumb enough to stay by." His voice got softer as his spoke, almost ending without noise at all. The old man gazed him directly in the eye, but Humphrey shuffled his vision to the floor and continued to talk. "If he had this dream only recently, maybe he doesn't know where it's from. There are still scrolls that remain from the last times we've been to the Isles and they don't talk about a 'natural arch.' It says that very clear in ink, 'natural arch.' He probably is just figuring out as we speak."
"Or he already knows and is afraid to tell us," The last of the men spoke, and he was the oldest of the three, almost crippled. Ancient, yet breathing. His hair resembled thin spider's silk, only attached on one end. It ended everywhere, spreading out straight up and sideways. "He speaks only when he prefers to speak, he opened it up to us only because he wants to warn us of what is to come. To tempt us with his word loving trickery and vague descriptions of future events that just happen to come true. The Isles will remain far away from us, as we should keep from them. It ended in chaos and destruction last time, what makes you think it will be any different?" The man was spitting he was so visibly worked up, "Well, we'll know in a couple days when he leaves that shack he stays in and actually gives us some damned facts." The three nodded in unison.
"Anyway," Humphrey got up and waddled slowly across the marble floor, "I better get ready to open the bar, the first ranchers and smiths'll be in fairly soon. You two are welcome to stay." He finally made it to the far side of the bar, and took his place on a chair behind the counter.
"No thanks Humphrey, I have to deal with more important issues at hand." The oldest man, supported by a cane, trembled as he got up. The other man helped him the rest of the way and he exited the bar.
"I'm not sure Humphrey, but I'm really worried now that Loncovitz is really hiding something from us, and not just leaving this dream open ended." The other man stepped across the floor, his wooden shoes clanking on the marble as he treaded, finally coming to a stop when he took his place across from Humphrey. "I'm just not sure."