The Tribe

"Where is it?!" I demanded.

"Where is what? Please just come down and-" Mur'Kui started, I didn't let him finish.

"My band! The thing I had on my wrist! Have you taken it?" 

The Centaurs frowned and the one called Helk stepped forward.

"Little one, you had no... band, no kind of jewellery on you at all when we found you," Helk said slowly.

"How do I know you aren't lying?"

Mur'Kui came forward, ahead of Helk, stood at the side of the bed, and held his arm out, in a gesture of kindness.

"Little one, please. We don't trade with other races, and we have no currency of our own- what use could we possibly have with it?" He said, shaking his arm once to remind me it was still there.

For a moment I pondered. He was right, they had no use for it in their society, and it wasn't of their make, so it wouldn't make a nice trinket of any kind.

"You have no idea of the power contained in that band. Please... promise me you don't have it," I looked deep into Mur'Kui's eyes. They were dark, an almost warm source of some kind lay deep within them.

"I promise," Mur'Kui replied, his eyes not flickering or faltering once. He was telling the truth. I took his arm firmly, and stepped off the bed.

"Good, how do you feel?" Helk asked.

I felt dizzy, and a sick feeling was building up in my throat. The Band was gone. It had been there as I lay dying, i remembered it. The way it stayed cold in the burning heat of the desert, the way it seemed to spread that cold throughout my body. It had been there until the moment I had passed out.

And now it was gone.

"I'm fine- I need to find that bracelet," I said impatiently.

"Little one, you should be happy that you escaped with your life. You must have been laying there in the Wastes for days... be thankful that all you lost was a trinket," Mur'Kui said, coming down to my level. His powerful looking legs gave him amazing stature.

"It's not just a trinket," I stopped myself, they would never understand, "I need to leave, I need to find it,"

"The Wastes are not safe," Helk said, "And you still must explain how you got so far into our territory with no supplies of any kind,"

"That's not important-"

"Yes, it is. Other races know that these are our lands, and you have broken many unspoken laws by trespassing here!" Helk's tone was short and impending.

It would take too long to explain how I happened to get where I was, and I needed to find the Band before Morthor did.

"Okay... I'm sorry for trespassing, but I really need to find that bracelet..." I started.

"No, the treaties we have with the borderlands are clear, any trespassers must be returned to a border outpost by a convoy of four hunters. Tomorrow, you will be taken South to the Gaelwynd border and dealt with by your kind," Helk said, his voice final.

My blood ran cold, if I was handed over to the humans, I would have no chance of finding the Band. My mouth opened but I felt a hand on my shoulder, Mur'Kui stepped forward.

"Chieftain- she means us no harm. She talks of this Band as though it is incredibly important to her," He said, making his words as respectful as possible, "Our hunting run today goes right by where we found her last week. The least we can do before handing her over is let her have one chance of finding it,"

Helk sighed.

"Mur'Kui, if you allow her to go on your hunting run, you face the consequences from the humans if she gets hurt," Helk said.

"I understand, Chieftain,"

Helk grunted.

"I thought you were smarter than that, young one. It is agreed, the human gets one run to find her... trinket, and then we return her," He finished.

And then he left. Followed by the rest of the tents occupants.

Mur'Kui gestured to a pile of clothes on the bed.

"The leathers you are wearing are incredibly torn, the leathermakers have spent the week making you a new outfit. Feel free to wear them," With that, he nodded, smiled slightly and left the tent.




The End

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