Part 3: Restoration #1

posted Oct 28, 2017, 6:16 AM by Janet Merritt   [ updated Oct 28, 2017, 6:17 AM ]

Part 3:  Restoration

#1


A Thousand Years Later


“Get the humans and children inside!  Hurry!”  Fisher Butterfield hollered.   Scooping up a three-year-old DEH (Dueanian Enhanced Human) child from the sandy beach, she bolted for the settlement’s compound.  “Ash,” she called, spotting one of her four sons as he emerged from a cornfield.  “Gather your brothers.  We’ve got trouble coming.”

Ash, never one to question his mother’s uncanny ability to detect danger, turned tail and headed towards the forest.

Once Fisher entered the compound she handed the child to the closest human.  “Sound the alarm,” she commanded, “we don’t have much time.”

The woman, somewhere in her late forties, nodded and whispered hushed words to the now bawling child.

A heavyset DEH male ran to her.  He was dressed in a lightweight suit of metal armour.  Weapons holstered and strapped to both his thighs and a wickedly sharp sword sheathed on his back.

“Open up the armoury,” she ordered.  “Equip all DEH and man a perimeter around the compound.  Position the oldest DEH at the north, south, and west points.  Ready the cannons and arm up the archers.”

“Affirmative,” the man said, and started barking out orders before he’d even took a step toward the armoury.

Fisher looked around.  Hundreds of people, both human and DEH rushed past and around her.  Some carrying small children, others baskets of corn and other crops that they’d been in the midst of harvesting.

The alarm sounded.  The blast shrill and piercing.  Reminiscent of the air-raid sirens of the twenty century.  Ancient but effective.

Lava, Fisher’s oldest son, joined her.  He gripped her shoulder and waited for the siren to take a moment’s pause.  “What threat are we facing?”

The concern in her son’s eyes, so like his father’s, had Fisher inhaling deeply.  She knew he wanted to know why she had sounded the alarm and not the bell.

“This isn’t a hurricane or any natural threat.  We have a rift opening up.”

Lava’s jaw clenched, then he swallowed.  “There’s hasn’t been one in what, fifty years?  At least not this close.”

Fisher nodded.

“Can you sense what’s coming through?”

Fisher shook her head.

The alarm sounded again.

Rain, another of Fisher’s sons came running through the compound gates.  The sleeves of his rolled up perspiration damp work shirt dusted with saw dust and wood chips.  His strong forearms glistened with sweat.

“We couldn’t locate Kane,” he said when the siren’s final blare faded.

Lava scowled.  “He’s probably goofing off somewhere.”

“Don’t worry about your brother,” Fisher grinned faintly.  Kane, short for hurricane, the youngest of her quadruplet sons had always been the most free spirited of her children.  In a lot of ways he most resembled his father both in appearance and personality.  “He’ll show up.”

“Let’s just hope it’s in time to lend a hand,” Lava quipped, a note of exasperation in his tone.

“Give him a break, Lav,” Rain huffed.  “He does his share of work, just like us.”

Lava raised an eyebrow.  “Barely you mean.”

While the brothers continued to banter with the age-old argument over Kane, Fisher focused her attention on stretching her mind out to reach her son.

“He’s on his way,” she interrupted her sons a few moments later.  “Let’s go.”

The three hurried out of the compound as the last of the settlers poured through the compound gate.  When Fisher was sure everyone was inside she gave the command to close the gate.

The grinding sound of the heavy chain lowering the thick iron struts of the gate was not a reassuring sound to Fisher’s ears.  She looked back through the checkered pattern of the iron bars crisscrossing the gate and nodded to the same heavyset DEH man.  He now wore a metal helmet with a ornamental faceplate.  Fisher could only see the orange tinge to his eyes.

She raised her arm in the air and closed her fist.  This was the signal for everyone to stand at the ready.

Kane blew in and solidified his body beside his mother.

Fisher turned and without a word the five of them, with Fisher in the middle and two of her sons on each side, linked their arms together.

Fisher closed her eyes and concentrated.  Her body began to shimmer orange as she radiated her energy outward.  One by one each of her sons began to shimmer as well.  Then as one they drew in the heavy moisture from the ocean nearby and started to expand.


©Human in Inhuman Worlds by Janet Merritt