Wolf Eyes - Chapter One
quicknote: i like writing in the first person. I'm not writing this as if i am Tari, i just like the point of view it adds to the story.
One- The Wood
I jumped out of bed, seeing the light growing outside my window. "I overslept." I mumbled angrily to myself, throwing on a pair of breeches, a tunic, and my boots. I fastened a cloak hurriedly about my shoulders, and turned the door knob slowly. I peered out, finding it dark and silent. I looked over at my parents room. Their door was shut, and no light escaped through the bottom. I stepped out cautiously, cringing as my door clicked shut behind me. I went silently outside to the stables. I took Alatriel from her stall and mounted her swiftly. She was a birthday present to me, some years ago, and I had grown to love her over the years. We set out at a trot, winding our way down the levels of Minas Tirith. The streets grew busier and busier, and by the time we passed through the last gate, the sun had fully risen.
Alatariel broke into a gallop and we sped across much of Pelennor fields. The plains were still scarred deeply from the battle that was fought here some twenty years before. Father had gone off, all clad in mail. A great fire leapt up around us, leaving us covered in a smoky vale. The days when Sauron had fallen, leaving everyone to pick up the pieces. There were places where great holes still lay, or scorched grasses had never grown back.
We had soon come to a small wood, it's expanse backing up to Mt. Mindolluin. Alatariel slowed as we neared the forest's eaves. The mid-morning light fell in pools on the ground. I dismounted leading my ebony mare on. We made no sound over the leaf-covered earth as we traveled further in. It was a relief to get out of the city; it was always so busy. My father works there as a healer, he is the head of the Houses of Healing. And that is his dream for me too. I grumbled softly to myself at the thought of me hanging over the beads of sickened people. My grandmother was a healer too, but she lives far up north in Lothlorien, with her kin. She chose a mortal life, my grandfather has since died, and her time is soon to come.
Soon we came to a place where the forest brightened. A small pool was fed by a spring that came down from the mountain. The canopy of trees gave way, letting a soft grass, which became full in spring, run around it. I usually ended up here whenever I ventured out of Minas Tirith, it was far more peaceful than the bustling streets at home. Alatariel drank deeply from the pool and I settled with my back against one of the tree trunks. Winter still clung to the trees, their branches bare, creaked in it's chilled wind. I listened peacefully picking out other noises, slowly lulling me to sleep...
The world darkened before my eyes, the forests gloom engulfing me. My dream took hold of me and I was on my feet. I felt eyes boring into me. Something's breath hot on the back of my neck. I swiveled around trying to pin my gaze on it, but the scene was the same. Panic swelled in my breast, and I began to jog in one direction. My legs pumped harder and harder, but not hard enough, I could still feel my pursuer. I glanced back over my shoulder, but I could see nothing. There had to be a way out, an exit. A place where light shone through so I could see. Out of the darkness a tall gray figure loomed up ahead. Hope leaped inside me, as I toppled into it, but it didn't budge. I came around to face it, and after squinting and trying to see in the poor light. I saw the familiar face. My father looked down at me, solid in the form of a tree. I backed away trembling until I could no longer see his cold face staring at me...
When I woke Alatariel was grazing nearby and the sun told me it was a little past noon. I got up and walked about the clearing trying to wake my senses. I couldn't shake my dream. I had it at least once every new moon, sometimes more sometimes less. They were all slightly different, but in the end I was always running. I bent over the pool, dipping my hands in the cold water. Bumps spread up my arms as I brought the water up to my face. The hairs on the back of my neck began to prick. I let the water slip through my fingers and I listened intently. This wasn't the only time I had had the feeling while I was here. She had come again, to pay me another silent visit.