Anyway I've decided to hold my self accountable for writing by occasionally posting (raw, un-edited) snippets here on my blog, so that the internet world who follows this blog (aka NO ONE) can read them.
p.s. details like "angles" and physical formations are important to the plot as a whole, not fluff, so bear that in mind with the UBER levels of detail. This is the FIRST chapter, and I need my protagonist's stuffy uniformed appearance to be contrasted later in the book with her simplicity, so I wrote a lot of character detail. Forgive me!
He stood at the edge of the tiny town, his dark, bare feet in the grass, which was sticky with spilled blood. He knew it was foolish to stand, to be seen, but he felt as though someone should witness this, the end of the world. Around him, smelling salty and musty in the end-summer heat, lay his people, thousands of them. All brandishing any weapon they could find, none were a match for the mysterious creatures who came from below to annihilate them all. There was not a sound, not from any direction. The silence was terrifying.
In the distance, he saw a sparkle of light, as though it were shining off a crystal – the gossamer, wax-paper wings of the beast, beating so fast they were barely visible, save a glint in the sunshine. Suddenly, the beast turned, and sounding a shriek that pierced through the silence, it flew with blinding speed toward where he stood.
He braced himself, taking a deep breath, trying to picture his life as it might have been had he lived past the age of eleven. He felt at peace with his short time on Earth, and shut his eyes.
Seconds passed, then perhaps a minute. The pain never came, and he felt a breeze on his face – the scent of the beasts had disappeared.
My eyes opened. I walked briskly down the long transport road, toward the center of the Village. It had been almost six years since I had traveled to Brodick, and then I had been just a child, thirteen years old with almost no training. As the transport whipped around a perfect 120° angle, I held my breath, focusing my strength into my feet so as not to topple by the rush of the elaborate conveyor system we used to get around under the Dome.
Absently, my eyes glanced outward, through the glass wall of the Dome, into the abyss behind the walls. A terrifying sight seemed to glare back at me – the desolation, boiling springs and cracked ground, utter nothingness. I flexed my fingers as I focused carefully away from the scene, so utterly forsaken. Another whip around a corner, and I was heading straight for the center of the Village. Brodick was ahead of me, getting larger swiftly at the speed I was traveling. As the high towers of the modern-day castle stood before me, I felt myself take in a sharp breath, uncontrollably. Fear laced with shock, I suppose, at the grim things I could remember about my last trek to Brodick, the day my mother was taken from me.
Today was my day of Assignment. I had been training as a Warrior since that day six years ago, and I felt that the secrets I now held were sure to impress the Apidictor, the man who determined each young person’s fate among the Village. Much like the fabled Wizard of Oz, the Apidictor was an ancient man, old well beyond what was naturally possible, and it was his job to delegate and make law. He had supposedly created the Dome when the world ended outside of it, and it was he who kept us safe.
He was also known to be irrational, overbearing, and very secretive.
I couldn’t help it – I was terrified.
I approached the Guards of Brodick, a hundred or so huge men and women, brandishing blades and modern weapons. Everyone hoped to be appointed a Guard, but I knew my peculiarly small size – I was barely five foot five, tiny compared to the average height of around five foot ten – would bar me from this particular Assignment. I bowed my head slowly, and then lifted my chin proudly, as was a respected stance among the Guard. They were notorious for being cruel, and it was rumored that those who looked too meek would be picked off without a second though. My size notwithstanding, I was far from meek.
My eyes focused around me for the first time that day. I noticed every few feet on the Transporter someone around my age stood – men, women, all dressed in their finest outfits according to their preferred classes, going to face the Apidictor.
I looked down at myself, suddenly nervous that I had forgotten some trinket or bauble with my elaborate Warrior outfit. Carefully checking, I smoothed my hands over the short, pure white sleeves; heavy linen scratched against my fingers. My hands grazed the straps of the brown leather sheath, which held my curved blade, a modern-day dress sword. My two other blades were nestled in the belt around my waist, tucked neatly into sheaths, unnecessary as the first. My hidden dagger was neatly in my brown boots, which were buttoned just below my knees. Down the entire left side of my body was a long black strip of linen, draped over my shoulder, which held each award and bauble achieved in training. I was of the highest class achievable in Warrior, the equivalent to an ancient Shodan in martial arts - the Martial Arts I perfected, from old Kung Fu to our modern Trigona. My tiny hands were clad in their brown gloves, the fingers worn and cut off from my years wearing them. My very long, stick straight black hair, such a contrast to my snowy-white skin, was pulled away from my face into a hundred thin braids, which took my dear partner hours to complete. I had been lucky, I remembered with a smile. My partner Ariana only required her hair to be pulled into a ponytail. My braids were a mark of my high level of service to the people of the Village. It seemed like I had everything necessary for our dress uniforms, and I relaxed.
Of course, it was behind my bright green eyes I held my greatest weapon, one I hadn’t quite figured out how to control as easily as the formations and movements of the Warrior techniques. It was this weapon that I would keep secret, even from the Apidictor, and this didn’t worry me – I wasn’t sure the secret was of any value at all.