Finding Gratitude, Part 17

I opened my eyes. Merryl glared back at me, but this time she had brought friends.

A quick count gave me about a half-dozen adults. They were all in business attire. Blacksmith aprons, shop shirts, bakers and butchers, the last of which was carrying a rather large cleaver that I didn’t want any closer to me.

They all followed Merryl, and were glaring at me too. Not again.

I groaned, and looked up at the sky. “What did I do this time? I haven’t talked with anybody since I left your bar.”

Merryl pointed at the ruin. “Why are you working on that?”

“Because it’s destroyed.” No. I was just working on an inanimate object that nobody was using. Maybe do something nice. I didn’t hit anybody, or encroach on profits, or breathe wrong. No.

“Do you want us to get destroyed?” The butcher shouted.

I looked up at the house. “From a house?”

“Are you that blind, you stupid girl, or just so…” Merryl turned and slugged the butcher in the gut. He gasped, and fell to the ground. The elf dragged him up to his feet.

“You don’t talk to her like that,” she warned. “She’s new, not dumb. And even then, you show some respect.”

The butcher glared at her. “I’ve been working with blood all day, elf.”

“That a threat?”

Merryl released him, and motioned him on. “Come on, then. Give it your best shot.”

The butcher glared ahead.

“Then screw off,” Merryl said. “You’ve been heard.”

The butcher, and after a few moments the rest of the group, left. Merryl sighed, and held her head. “I don’t like humans.”

“I’m…”

“I know. Look, kid. There’s a reason this place is abandoned.”

She pointed further up the street. A few blocks down, loomed a spire. Stretching twenty stories, it had a constant cloud overhead. Rain pelted down just on the spire.

“Around that spire is about six blocks of prime real estate. A clean spring, right in the southern part of town, and no landlord to whine about rent. And yet, it is completely abandoned, thanks to that spire.

“It arrived with a wyvern.”

Wyvern. A dragonlet. Something that evoked the image of those fabled creatures. Extremely territorial, and connected to a certain element…

“That’s the stupid thing that spat lightning at me my first day in town!” I shouted.

I jumped up, and started walking towards the spire.

“No!” Merryl grabbed my arm. “You can’t just go into this. That wyvern…”

“Has torn apart the area, and left everyone in fear,” I muttered. “It isn’t connected to a gang, or a corrupt force, or anything else.

“It’s the perfect thing to vent some heroing on.”

Merryl continued shouting at me, but at this point I could have cared less. There was a spire to climb, a monster to fight, and a town to save.

I was a heroine. This was what I was supposed to do.

copyright 2018 Jack Holder

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