The Impossible: Chapter 1 (4)
It was freezing cold. The snow had been falling for two weeks, it was nearly impossible to get around the village. Small huts were all invitingly shining in light that bright, even the wanderers with the coldest of hearts would have wanted to stop and just take a moment to rest.
It was an ordinary evening when the church bells started ringing. It gave me the sign to get moving to raid the forests. We, the amiri and naydiri had always collected the snowflowers so that the most skillful women of our people could knit the memories and dreams of the amiri and naydiri into the snowlace, as we tend to call it.
I stepped out of our house and took the path to the White Forest. There where places in the woods where there was no snow and only the small pearls of frost covered the bellflowers of the Lady. I wondered if these were the places, where Her guards had worked for whole Kettleday. Immidiately I saw the white, tender and pure blossoms of the snowflowers.
I measured my steps carefully, aware of the curses that lay on those who dare to break the rules. Something disturbed me. It was like somebody was calling me at a distance, as the wind was whispering my name, as the seas were singing about me. As they were calling on me.
I lost track counting my steps. The number one rule of all fairytales was not to quit whatever you were doing – it would only make the situation worse, they say. So I didn´t. I continued on slowly and frightened. I took the silver dagger out of my old bag given to me by my Grandmom and cut the snowflowers just as Mom had told me to. All the sudden I saw the greatest of Shadows emerging. I forgot about everything I had learned for the past years at school and ran as fast as I could.
I kept running on until I couldn´t feel my legs because of the cold. I shivered out of fear. It seemed as I had been able to get rid of the Shadow.
It took me a while but after an hour I finally arrived at the Woodfellows´ manor. I rung the small doorbell. A young maiden came to open the door. She looked at my in disgust, I believed that the messy hair, my bare feet and of course my size, my undeniably surprising size had done their job. See, I was 4 feet 2 inches. She must´ve thought I was one of the Underpeople, I realized when she slammed the huge door in my face. I knocked again, so I wouldn´t make the same mistake this time. She probably felt as I was a little annoying beggar, who just couldn´t left the royal naydiri alone.
„Is Mrs Woodfellow here?“ I screamed out to nowhere. As my voice was really weak I thought I had failed fulfilling my duties. It was probably still heard as I caught some steps approaching the door.
„Depends on who´s asking,“ I heard an old lady saying.
„It´s me, Quickfeet of the amiri,“ I responded quickly, „brought you the winterflowers you asked for.“
The young maiden opened the door blushing, ashamed she had not invited me in. The old lady coughed several times and thanked me for the gift.
„Sorry about her,“ she said frowning at the maiden, „you did your job well.“
„Would you like some tea?“ she asked me.
I stepped inside the house. I had been there for many times. It didn´t happen that often that a naydir and amir could get along that well. Partly that was because of the fact there had always been ancieny rivalry between those two clans, partly because most of the naydiri thought of themselves better than they did of the amiri. The conflict between the clans culminated with the War of Misery a long time ago. The grandparents of the little amiri always tend to yarn about the sadness of those Times everytime they happen to visit their beloved children.
Well, it all didn´t matter to me. It was considered a bad manner to take the flowers to the enemy but I didn´t see Mrs Woodfellow as one. I was just a child back then and the excitement was just so irresistable – I did something in secret and, of course, I had none of the Higher amiri as my friends. I thought it would do no harm to break the rules once or twice.