Prompt of the Week

I believe that writers must always be committed to learning. We must be committed to learning more about the world around us. We must have a desire to know all kinds of things-different languages, more about our language, history, mythology, science-and we must be able to follow through on that. Everything we learn has an influence on what we write, and the more we know the better our stories become. That’s why I made today’s prompt:

Write 500 words about Learning

My Response:

I learned almost everything that I know from Evelyn. I was only ten when she found me in the streets, begging for change. To this day I do not know why it is me out of a dozen begging children that she chose to take under her wing, but I am eternally grateful.

Evelyn gave me a home, my very own room in the temple. It was the first time I’d ever had a room of my own; I had lived inside a small house with my parents and my brother before that, but the plague took all three of them. My brother and I had shared a room, and it was a miracle that I did not get sick too.

It would seem that my life up until the day Evelyn died was full of miracles. My survival was the first one, and Evelyn finding me was the second. She was not an ordinary woman; Evelyn was said to have grown up in the Wilds, and while she never admitted nor denied it, it was not hard to believe if you knew her well. She knew how to hunt, how to trap animals, how to make things grow. Her skills exceeded those of ordinary city people.

Now that I was making my way in the forest, everything Evelyn had taught me was incredibly useful. It was she who taught me how to set up the traps which caught the rabbits; she who taught me skills with a bow to shoot the deer from afar; she who taught me how to skin the animals and clean them properly. It was even Evelyn who had taught me how to fight.

I was practicing fighting with a tree when I heard them coming. There were no horses, only the sounds of voices coming out of the forest. I picked up my sword and drew it, stepping away from the tree and looking around.

A woman and a man walked into the clearing, arguing about something. The woman had red hair and green eyes and looked to be feisty, and the man had brown hair, brown facial fuzz and brown eyes with a sparkle to them that made it seem almost as if he were smiling. Each was carrying a bucket. They stopped by the pond to collect water and it was only then that the woman noticed me and nudged her friend. Both pairs of eyes landed on me and stayed there.

“Who are you?” the woman asked.

“Does it matter? Who I am is just a name,” I said, raising my eyebrows.

“Then you will not ask us who we are,” she said.

“Perhaps not, but I might ask why you are here.”

The man narrowed his eyes. “Who are you working for?”

“Nobody. I am merely finding my own way.”

The man and the woman looked at each other. Their eyes met and she raised an eyebrow at him. He whispered something in her ear and she whispered something back. They stayed on the other side of the little sparkling pond. After a moment’s whispered conversation, he turned back to me.

“Then perhaps you should find your way among my people,” the man said. “We live in a small village a half day walk from here.”

“Are you the barbarians they tell us about in school?” I asked, grip tightening.

The man chuckled. “I suppose we are, though we can read and write just like you can. They call us barbarians because it makes us look bad.”

“So if I come with you I will find that your village is well taken care of, that you treat your women well, and that you worship the Gods of Llyr?”

“Perhaps. I would let you be the judge of that though.”

I sheathed my sword. “Then I will follow you.”

“Good,” the man said, filling his bucket with water. “Then come along, we haven’t got much time to get back before sunset.”


About Dianna Gunn

I am a freelance writer by day and a fantasy author by night. My first YA fantasy novella, Keeper of the Dawn, is available now through The Book Smugglers Publishing.

Posted on February 21, 2011, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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