First Draft Excerpt from Moving The Pieces

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It wasn't too long before patrols that had encountered lemuure started showing up. Their attitude was resentful at the new requirement, "We've been told there's some new crap we've got to get checked for. I tell you that damned white thing never got close to any of my men!" the patrol leader complained.

"That's great, but if you're not checked, you could be harboring the ghul virus," I explained.

"Can't give us a virus if it didn't touch nobody!" one of the other members exclaimed.

"Absolutely right you are!" Asina replied, "But this virus causes people to lose control and attack others. You wouldn't want to be killed for something you can't help, would you?"

"What are you going to do? Quarantine us?" It was obvious he intended 'quarantine' as a euphemism. To be fair, nobody in the Advancement Mission had gotten around to antibiotics yet, so plague procedures were often merciless.

"No, my wife and I are agaani," I explained, "We're originally from Windhome Bay, but when these creatures attacked Yarvahs a couple sixty-fours ago, the agaani found a way to cure it. The two cities are so close, her parents learned how, and they taught us. If you've got it, we can cure you."

"Cure us? We thought you were going to shoot anyone who had it!"

We both shook our heads, chuckling. "We need everyone who can help keep the demons out! You can't patrol the city for demons if you're dead."

"We're hoping to find other agaani in the city who know how," Asina added, "If you'll spread the word, maybe someone will hear."

"More important is please tell the other patrols you encounter that the cure isn't shooting people who have it!" I said, "If the people on patrol think that, they won't come in - and then we'll lose the city when they go crazy after about a third of a day."

"But you were correct - nobody in this group is infected," Asina finished, "Thank you for coming in and please tell everyone the truth."

When they were gone, I asked Asina, "Can you handle this here for about an hour? I didn't have a chance to explain to my workers." I had effectively vanished on them - not a good habit for a leader to be in.

"Not right now," she replied, "No matter my reputation, I look like a little old lady. You may look just as old, but you're big enough to still prevent a lot of trouble. You saw how suspicious those people were."
I had to agree. We didn't want to get into violence with people afraid to be checked for the ghul virus. Besides, I had perfect company.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Dan Melson published on August 23, 2021 4:13 AM.

Blurb and First Draft Excerpt from End of Childhood was the previous entry in this blog.

Moving The Pieces: Climactic Scene Finished. is the next entry in this blog.

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