1# Arrival

1# Arrival

A Chapter by M.King

The first chapter to "When Broken we Survive" Titled Arrival you will understand why by the end of the chapter.


As dawn arrived the valley that was dark only moments ago became a picture, one an artist might canvas.  Open fields were glowing with the sunshine beaming down, chirps of new born birds could be heard from the trees that covered the valley’s slopes and a quiet little village at the centre of it all. 

‘Is it empty?, like the others?’ ‘It is empty but not like the others, can’t you smell that boy? Still fresh’ Referring to the village the skinny boy and old man hiked their way down a dirt path to guide those safely down the slopes ‘The only thing I can smell is dung’

The boy with tamed sandy blonde hair; well brushed with his fringe swept to the left, he wore a soft brown vest on top a well ironed plain shirt, he’s trousers made of a similar fabric but coloured dark and boots muddy from the walk he had taken, the old man wore nearly identical clothing, however included a small bowtie, saddle bag and tartan flat cap to cover his white hair. 

Now within the little village the two surveyed the cobblestone houses that sat either side of the single dirt road throughout the scene, it seemed just as the man said the village was empty, not a soul to be found.  ‘Mr Pipel, do you smell it now?’ sniffing the air around him the skinny Mr Pipel replied ‘Its sulphur’ ‘correct, the ones before had nothing, but here in Kruce, we’re making progress’ Pipel nodded out of satisfaction with himself.  ‘It’s hard to believe that people are just vanishing into thin air, but that is why its so extraordinary, an impossibility has been occurring and I’m going to be the one uncover the mystery that shrouds it, does that not excite you’ the old man had become quite warped into his own words.  ‘Professor please calm yourself’ Pipel had gotten used to his teachers ways, the excitement he would get himself into as he imagined the making of his own legend.  ‘Oh you’re no fun, this is an adventure boy, enjoy it’ Pipel slowly brushed his hand through his hair slightly irritated at the professor’s immature view ‘For all we know the villages could be dead’ Pipel spoke calmly and waited for the professor to correct him as he always did, ‘Dead? Boy do you see any corpses; blood, any signs of an attack’ as Pipel was reminded of the same thing they had seen in the past three villages ‘What if the people left of their own accord?’ Another question soon to be answered ‘Are you being stupid boy? Sentiments boy, nothing has been taken, photographs, play dolls not even food, these people vanished with only the clothing on their backs’ with a huff of air the professor turned his back on Pipel, he tilted his head back, resting his arms against his back for support as he inhaled deeply through his nostrils, sulphur it was their first real clue. 

As dawn became the day the two had investigated every home but there was nothing new, no people; nothing taken and no signs of struggle which meant kidnapping was unlikely unless the fiends cleaned up after themselves, very unlikely indeed.  Pipel still wondered if the people left on their own accord, perhaps they were part of an unknown cult who took a pilgrimage while fasting themselves, the professor was right again, he was being stupid. 

Pipel stood at the entrance road to the village, he looked up and stared at a wooden board nailed to a post in the ground, it read Kruce, the name of the village, a simple farmers village in the middle of a valley ‘Pipel were to be on the move’ surprised some Pipel knew why but asked anyway ‘So soon?’ ‘Yes boy, we’re finally catching up to whatever is the cause to all of this’ Piple rubbed his nose against the back of his hand, the country air was colder than the polluted city air he was used too ‘do you know which way were going?’ ‘Of course, we head for Tambem, the next village over the valleys’ Pipel face fell ill, more hiking, it wasn’t exactly Pipel’s ideal travel choice but it had saved them time, instead of taking the long route by following the caravan roads they went as the crow flew, a straight path. 

As the set off from Kruce the pair looked back at the empty village, it felt so unnatural to see homes like those with nobody living in them, Pipel thought about the silence, even out far from the city there would still be noise here, however quiet.  A whole hour passed since they left Kruce, they walked as if they had taken the silence of the village with them, grass crunching beneath their feet as they walked, the cold wind was refreshing to Piple, and maybe as an old man he could see himself living out here in the country. 

The bless of the walk soon ended with a few stern grunts and sighs shot in Pipel’s direction, at first he tried to ignore the old man but it was like a baby crying until it was fed ‘Yes, Professor’ asked Pipel with some bite in his voice, a smirk formed across his wrinkled face ‘Have you noticed?’ Pipel kept his eyes forwards, the tone the professor used was smug, meaning if Pipel had noticed or not he was going to be informed ‘The sulphur boy, the wind is carrying it’ a quick sniff was all that was needed to recognise the smell, the professor was right, the wind blew in the direction they were heading, there was no doubt that they were getting closer, they only had to follow their noses and it would lead them, but to what was still unknown, all they were certain about was it lead to Tambem the village that now was only over the next hill. 

The usual excited expression took over the professor’s face and even Pipel could stop himself from the giddy feeling, the two picked up pace to climb the green hill, Pipel’s lanky legs put him in front of the professor, the two raced up the hill like two school children within the space of a minute they had both clambered to the top, wheezing and gasping for air.

Sweat dripped down the sides of their red faces, eyes glued to the village Tambem ahead of them, the village was a lot like the last, the stench of sulphur filled the air but there were people here, they haven’t been taken yet, eager to learn the professor bolted for the villagers followed by Pipel how was considerable more out of breath than the old man.  As they approached the villages could be seen many of them but something was very strange, like statues they stood outside their homes, women and men lined up their eyes blank and limbs seeming so lifeless.  The Professor rushed to a young man with scuffed clothing, most likely a farm hand, he stood still even with the professor shaking the boy for a response, nothing the boy’s eyes didn’t even blink.  The professor moved to a second villager, this time a woman with long brown hair, blank eyes and no response. 

‘Professor what is it, what’s going on? Pipel examined the boy the professor had checked ‘Professor?’ he said with a more demanding tone, the Professor was jittering, out of excitement, out of fear the Professor mumbled to himself ‘Could it be? It couldn’t be’ examining the couple more villages the Professor quit and marched passed Pipel, grabbing the boy’s arm as he passed ‘Professor!’ the old man turned to him, his eyes panicked, ‘Professor what is it?’ releasing Pipel the Professor carried on ‘We have to go’ ‘but why?,  I don’t understand’ storming back the way they came the Professor didn’t slow himself ‘Stupid boy, they’re coming we have to go’ Pipel jogged a few steps before stopping again ‘But what about the villagers?’ the professor stopping for that brief moment he yelled back ending in a whisper ‘Leave them, they’re dead already’. 

Hesitant Pipel looked back at the lifeless villagers before he too retreated with the Professor.  The Professor lay of his belly on top the green hill they had hiked over, looking back at the village ‘Get down boy, hurry’ Pipel slid down beside him lost to reason why the Professor said what he said ‘Why? Professor? Can’t we help them? Pipel’s asked with a broken voice ‘Lechers’ the word rang in Pipel’s ears like poison, Lechers were something even kings feared, monsters that wielded the nightmare of hell like a sword and poured it into your very soul.  Pipel wanted to deny the Professor’s allegation but from what he had read in history books along with evidence that stood but a few hundred yards from them, it all fitted perfectly with Lechers. 

Forty years ago the monsters given the name Lechers disappeared from the eyes of the world after ravaging the land and massacring its people, humans warred with the lechers for survival, it was thought the whole race would be made extinct but for reasons unknown the lechers just stopped and vanished from the world, leaving only their memory and devastation behind them.  Pipel only knew the stories and the written history but had never seen one with his own eyes, but the Professor, the Professor was just a child when he witnessed the hell lechers brought with them. 

The Professors whole body shivered, the horror he witnessed as a child was all coming back to him.  The empty villages; the sulphur air, the soulless victims, all were signs of the lechers when they first arrived.  The Professor and the rest of the world had convinced themselves they wouldn’t see the lechers again, like a shared nightmare that had come and passed. 

Pipel placed a hand on the shoulder of the frightened old man in hopes to calm him, the Professor’s shiver wouldn’t calm and worried Pipel more so than before, could these monsters be so frightful, a shrieking echo from the village broken his train of thought. 

A young woman screamed as she ran out from a cobble house holding up her the skirt of her serving clothes in a fistful, Pipel lunged upwards but was dragged straight back down by the old man, the Professed shook his head, further screams grabbed the men.  Now when they looked to the woman there were five dark figures following, three of the five were crouched over and moved by like a primate, their fingers and toes appeared to have been sawn off leaving it an unsightly beast, dank rags covered over their grey skin, slimy like a frogs or toads and unfitting iron helms forced onto their heads acting as a muzzle.  The other two stood eight feet tall a dark cloak covering them both, shadowing their faces and covering their torsos, their limbs were long and thin, nails more like daggers and shared the same grey skin as the others. 

They moved slow, in no hurry to catch the woman that swore to escape.  Now even Pipel feared to move from the hill, they were the lechers he had read about in so many books, the creatures that put humans to the brink of extinction.  The three smaller lechers started to pick up pace still moving much like an ape, it’s palms and feet pushing off from the dirt pacing up the sounds of a small stampede, the three dark creatures began to chase the woman like a pack of hungry blood hounds hunting foxes for their masters sport.  Pipel felt glued to the hill, he repeated to himself over and over to act, this woman need help but fear froze his body, he wanted to save to young woman but it seemed he feared for himself even more.  A few short seconds and the girl was tackled to the ground, the ape like lechers grabbed and pulled her down, she would try time and time again to climb to her feet but unable each time, the three beasts had subdued her, her right arm only free enough to wave side to side, she was put to her knees her head pulled back, the woman’s screams had stopped and turned into desperate gasps for air, ‘please’ she said out to the beasts, the cloaked lechers now positioned over the restrained woman. 

‘This is how it started before, when I was just a child’

Pipel spun his round to the Professor hoping that he would have the courage to stop this madness, the professor looked as if he was trapped within his own mind, his eyes jerking in every direction looking for the exit.  The skinny man wanted to imagine he was elsewhere, somewhere comforting but how could he be so ignorant. 

A long fingered hand gently placed on the woman’s forehead, she could feel it’s bone resting against her, the slimy grey skin had small black spots at closer examination. She was cold now, her movement ceased, her skin began to turn pale, veins pulsed as if trying to leave her.  The woman’s body began to seizer, limbs shaking uncontrollably.  The beasts held her even tighter than before, the seizer was short  and died quickly, her veins stopped pulsing; her skin returned to its rightful shade but her body lifeless.  The cloaked lecher that had placed its hand upon her head hovered its fingers over the girl’s mouth then tugged it away, it positioned it’s hand if it were holding a small sphere but nothing could be seen in its palm.  The woman’s body to the reacted the invisible tug, falling back when pushed, the light in her eyes dimmed and became blank just like the other villagers.  The metal headed beasts put her upright, her limbs almost lifeless, the three moved her to stand in tow with the other villagers in front of their now empty homes.  The cloaked lecher held its thin hand up to marvel at the nothingness it held.  With its other hand it pulled the dark cloak a little aside to expose its ooze like torso, a black hole, filled with an ooze that bubbled and spat.  Carefully it placed its hand with itself and just as gently removed it. 

‘That’s how they work; they take their very souls and devour them, leaving their body lifeless’ the Professor had moved himself onto one knee but still cautious of his movements.  Pipel still stuck his belly to the hill, taking in what he had just witnessed, beasts that take souls, the very idea sounded prosperous, everything the young man had learnt over the years suddenly felt like a waste of time, he was afraid, afraid that he couldn’t understand. 

The men continued to spectate the village.  The villagers had been lined up outside their homes, all of them now stood without a soul.  The two cloaked ones stood at the head of the village looking into the distance while the three ape-like lechers positioned themselves ready to surround the villagers.  Like shepherds they rose their lengthy arms and waved them about giving commands to both the soulless villages and the metal headed lechers, soon enough they were on the move, villagers herded like sheep. 

The men waited until the herd were at the peak of their sight before they rose to two feet, Pipel’s legs shook, he felt weak and ill as did the Professor.  They helped one another to the empty village of Tambem, both their hearts still riveting at the events that unfolded before them. 

‘What do we do Professor?’ for once the professor did not have an answer, if this was the start of a massacre just like the one forty years ago the people would need to be warned but how could they do that, scream to the world, telling them of the lechers that they had thought to be gone.  Should they inform the empire of the coming war or even the university at which he gained his title.  Taking several deep breathes allowed the professor to think more clearly.  No matter how they went about it no one would believe them unless they had some evidence to show.  Lechers are a legend the world rather live without and ignore, their claims would be disregarded without a seconds thought. 

‘Mr Pipel, I have a favour to ask of you’ Piple nodded his head only a little ‘I need you to return to the university and tell the council what we saw here, find Professor Quillfox, he’ll help you with convincing the council’ confounded to why the professor with giving him these instruction he asked ‘And what about you?’ ‘I’ll follow the lechers’ Pipel was almost stunned by the professor’s idea ‘I doubt there is much an old fool like me could do but I have to do something, will you go to the university Pippel?’ Pipel felt he should offer to go in the professor’s place; however it was clear to the professor even more so than himself that he didn’t have the heart to do so. 

‘Ye..Yes’ he forced his answer out from his lips as the professor firmly gripped his hand ‘good luck my boy’ he smiled as he loosed his hold to reassure the young man or maybe himself.  The old man walked straight, following the lechers path, he rose his one arm into the air signalling their farewell and soon enough the young man Pipel, stood alone.  

© 2013 M.King

Author's Note

Please I encourage you to give me any feedback, positive and negative. I need to know where I can improve as well as knowing when I've done a good job.

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A good read. I think if you formatted it a little more it would make it easier to read. Such as dialog, spacing it out makes the conversation easier to follow. Other then that, overlooking the punctuation :), I found it very descriptive and a good start to the story being told.

Posted 10 Years Ago


10 Years Ago

Thanks for the feedback, I'll try improving as I go :)

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Added on April 21, 2013
Last Updated on April 21, 2013
Tags: broken, fantasy, monsters, Haskieer, Lechers, book, survive



Wolverhampton, West Midlands, United Kingdom

I read, I write. If I like something I'll let you know and I hope to one day have a published book, it's on my bucket list. more..

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