Bit of a piece I’ve been desultorily working on. Hope y’all like. 🙂
She yanked the arrow from the lad, whispering a quick Healing pact to dull his pain. Brief agony flared along her flank but subsided in a moment allowing her to finish her ministrations. She finished the transaction quickly, clamping down on blood vessels and intestines. The boy gasped in pain then subsided. He would live. She continued her delicate work, clamping off bleeders and stopping infection before it had a chance to take hold.
As she worked, the soldier’s face relaxed. He had dropped into the trance common to all trauma patients. She motioned a medico over to finish his treatment and stood, exhaling sharply. A cacophony of wails – felt, if not truly heard – greeted her. There was so many this time! How she hated these little wars. So many lost! And for what? A few more goats? Pah. It sickened her.
“Ma’am?” a voice swam out of rancid dark. “So sorry ma’am but, there’s trouble with one the new ones…” the slave’s thick monotone trailed off.
Igraine reached forward and felt for the youngster’s scarred hands. She guided them to her mouth, so he would be sure to hear and understand. “I hear. Where?”
She could feel blood collecting in her shoes but knew that it would be a matter of moments before the outside wounds closed. She would just have to move carefully until the interior wounds caught up.
The slave listened to her response against his fingers and then beckoned her forward. His bare back glistened in the smoky light. Humped scars crossed his skin, crisscrossing one another down past the brief clout he wore. One foot ended in a mangled twist of flesh, causing him to lurch along. Not a problem here in the monastery, thought Igraine. But, outside? Dead within a week, if he was lucky.
The boy moving ahead of her was all of sixteen. He wasn’t a victim of a raiding party. No. Those scars on his body were caused by his own tribe. He had been born with a defect of hearing. Of course, it hadn’t been noticed until he was older- — about four or so. Those ignorant savages had assumed a demon had possessed the boy. They tried to beat it out of him, brand it out of him.
From what she could understand his hearing wasn’t totally gone. Everything simply sounded as if it was coming from far away. It was better if he could see you – lip reading. But in absence of light, he could “read” your words on your lips. Igraine’s own sister had taught him that.
Sometimes, she felt that only by eradicating all humans would the world truly know peace.