Refuge – FFfAW

Flash Fiction for for Aspiring Writers is a writing challenge hosted by Priceless Joy. It asks that we write a piece of fiction from the photo prompt provided in around 100-150 words – give or take 25 words. If you’d like to join in with this challenge, follow the link above to see what to do. The challenge runs from Tuesday to Tuesday every week.

This week’s prompt was kindly provided by T.J. Paris:

photo-20160718073128048

And this is my story:

Refuge

Sure-footed as a cat, Edana led the villagers up the craggy slope, the pale glow from her lantern their only light in the darkness. Homesteads smouldered across the valley below, the legacy of ravaging armies bound for the citadel. And once the sun coloured the eastern skies, the slaughter would continue.

But the chieftain’s daughter had vowed to keep her people safe…

Screened by a rockfall, the entrance to her secret cave beckoned. Tielenth had promised to withdraw to the maze of tunnels behind and would only appear if she called. Whilst he was Edana’s protector, her people would flee from his terrible presence. For Tielenth was the Lord of Fire and could scour them from the Earth with his fiery breath.

Edana drew comfort in knowing that, should she ask, the great dragon would not hesitate in taking flight and annihilating the savage foe.

As she entered the cave the draught from the swishing tail as it vanished into the tunnels extinguished the tiny lantern flame.

It would be a long, dark night.

*

Word Count: 174

If you’d like to read other entries, or add a story yourself, click on the little blue frog:

About milliethom

I am a reader and writer of historical fiction with a keen interest in the Earth's history and all it involves, both physically and socially. I like nothing better than to be outdoors, especially in faraway places, and baking is something I do when my eyes need respite from my computer screen.
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41 Responses to Refuge – FFfAW

  1. Millie, this is wonderful! I love that the dragon is her protector! And, I love that she in turn is protecting the people. Wonderful story!

  2. milliethom says:

    Thank you, PJ. Dragons aren’t my usual thing. I’ve probably been listening to Louise too much! 😃

  3. Joy Pixley says:

    How wonderful to have a dragon on your side when fighting off your enemies! Although I suppose he’s a dangerous weapon to unleash, or she probably would have called on his help earlier in this battle. What an exciting story!

    • milliethom says:

      Dragons in fantasy stories are so common, I know, and I hesitated in actually posting this story. But I thought, what the heck! It’s the only dragon to be seen on my entire blog. You’re right though, a dragon would be a fearsome and unpredictable weapon to unleash. Thanks, Joy.

      • Joy Pixley says:

        I can’t decide whether dragons exist in Eneana or not. Certainly there are legends about them, but I suspect that those legends are greatly overblown, and perhaps completely fictional. Like lions, or swans; too ridiculous to really be true. 😉

      • milliethom says:

        There are legends about dragons in cultures all over the world. In Europe, there are a couple of countries that have St.George (who killed the dragon) as their patron saint, including England. Dragons come into many stories, but whether you feel they could still be in Eneana, you’ll have to work out. The one in the TV series ‘Merlin’ fitted in well. And who wants to write about lions or swans, for goodness sake! (Have you read the Juliet Marillier books ‘The Sevenwaters Trilogy’? I really loved Book I about the swan. And just who is Aslan again…? 🙂

      • Joy Pixley says:

        There are legends in Eneana about dragons too, but I wanted to mix it up a bit — everyone assumes that a fantasy world really does have dragons. So it’s fun to say that no, even though these other bizarre magical creatures are real, dragons aren’t, and neither are the legends about animals readers assume *are* real, like lions and swans. 😉

      • milliethom says:

        Oh, no lions or swans either. Now I’m wondering which kind of strange creatures Eneana has instead. 🙂 I must admit, dragons are a bit ‘old hat’.

      • Joy Pixley says:

        All kinds of them! Although so far I’ve spent more time on the intelligent creatures than the “monsters.” For instance, I have a different take on the classic Blink Dog, where instead of teleporting, they can step into or out of the Shadow Plane at will, effectively disappearing instantly to anyone here on the material plane. One such creature plays an important part in the novel I have planned for after Corwallen, where part of the adventure takes place on the Shadow Plane.

  4. Very exciting piece of the story. What would be the end result? In her favour or not? You have such an excellent way of using a few words but come up whit a complete story. I can see the picture clearly in my mind.

    • milliethom says:

      Well, if I were to continue the story, I think the dragon would have to be made use of somewhere along the way. Perhaps he could be the means of saving Edana’s kingdom from total conquest. But, then again, that would be a very predictable ending. Perhaps I should have a little rethink. Thank you for your lovely comment, Ineke.

  5. I was going through my pictures and found almost the same one 🙂

  6. draliman says:

    Great bit of fantasy! At least she has a dragon to fall back on if their refuge is discovered.

  7. swritings says:

    This was a great read! Loved the story line! Wonderfully penned! 🙂

    • milliethom says:

      Thank you for such a great comment! I don’t usually write about dragons, although I’ve read lots of books with them in. I like a nice bit of fantasy now and then. 🙂

  8. Excellent read…You captured the tension, hope, and fear wonderfully.

    • milliethom says:

      Oh, thank you, Russell. This story just sort of came out! I started off writing a completely different one, which didn’t have a dragon in it at all. My brain was obviously working without the rest of me that day.

  9. I love this very much.

  10. It’s wonderful having someone at your side in your challenges.

  11. Wonderful fiction, I love fantasy. The setting was great, I walked up the slopes with them.

    • milliethom says:

      Thank you, Lorraine. I love fantasy, too, but I don’t usually write it nowadays. This is the first time I’ve written a flash with a dragon in it. Oddly enough, I initially wrote my first book as a fantasy – until I came to my senses and realised it really didn’t work with the story of Alfred the Great! Lol. It took me ages to change it all to straight historical fiction.

  12. Ellespeth says:

    Wow! This was amazing – such a fanciful piece. And,of course, I love dragons.
    Ellespeth

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