Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Chapter Seventeen-Karmus

         I wasn't too sure how I had managed it but even through the darkness of the night I managed to get my bearings again. I was able to get myself using the map that I had been given back in the right direction towards Karmus. Throughout the entire night I kept thinking that I heard cackling coming from behind me. I was constantly worried that those little creatures were able to spring out on me again. I wasn't sure what they were but I was sure that they weren't going to be friendly to me any time soon. I was pretty sure they would turn me in to a feast first. Even Cloud seemed to be a little edgy after the ordeal we had went through. He would growl at the slightest noise he heard or if even the brushes rattled in the breeze. I didn't blame him after being tied down and nearly skinned. At least we had each other to watch the other's back.
         When I finally saw the sun coming up I sighed with relief knowing that we had managed to get through the night without any more incidents. Now it was the matter of staying awake through the day till we got to Karmus. At least when I got to Karmus I could rent a room at an inn or something for the night. That way I was less likely to become something else's meal in the middle of the night for a while. At the very least till I found this woman that has the connections to the Rebels. From there I'll hopefully get some place where I was safe from even Charlie till I found my way back to my world.
         Just as it was a little past noon I finally saw Karmus ahead of us. I was so glad to have finally gotten to Karmus. I wasn't just happy that I would get some rest now since my feet were killing me but it was safer than being out in the wild. I was less likely to have to look over my shoulders wondering what's lurking in the bushes. Then again when I got my first look at Karmus I wondered maybe I was safer out in the woods. The walls around the city were covered in what looked like barb wire that had been tangled in to each other. You couldn't see the wall behind the barb wire because of how thickly it had been placed. The wall was only visible about twenty feet up. The barb wire it's self was about twice as thick as what I've seen back home and seemed to have a shine to it like it was coated in something slimy. The massive gates leading in to the city were made of two solid pieces of dark wood each with dark steel running across it in three different places. There was a tiny door at the bottom of the right side of the gates where a guard in dark armor stood with a long spear in one hand. Even the guard standing there didn't look like he was friendly. I was beginning to all ready get a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach.
         "State your business." the guard snapped as I approached.
         "I'm here to see a friend." I replied.
         "Who's your friend?" he wondered.
         "Well the rumors has it she has connections to the Rebel's and I've been trying to find her." I answered unsure of how the guard was going to react.
           "You're here to see Talia Reign then." he concluded.
         "Yes." I said glad that he didn't make a big deal over the Rebel's comment.
         "You can go in but that thing has to stay out here." he said indicating towards Cloud with his spear.
         "He's perfectly harmless I assure you." I said.
         "I don't care if he's a purring kitten. That thing is not entering the city seeing as it is far from any kind of traditional pet." he said gruffly.
         I felt Cloud nudge me forward before he backed away slowly. I sighed knowing that he understood what was going on. I didn't like the idea of leaving him out here on his own but at least I knew he was smart enough to take care of himself. The guard stepped aside letting me walk in to the city on my own. When I walked in to the city I had a pretty good sense that a lot of the people were probably going to have the same attitude as the guard. Every person as the walked they kept their spines so straight that it seemed like to me they wore a stick built in to the backs of their clothing. Each person's expression seemed be either blank or a sneer was plastered on their face. Everyone wore clothing that were a mixture of black, white and grey. The very first thing that I thought about this city is that it was very depressing. Why would any one willingly live here?
         I could understand why the people in the previous town were depressed. They were being terrorized by a monster on a nightly basis. Here the streets were clean and were even lined with polished cobble stones to even out the road for the wagons and carriages that went by. The buildings were built closely together and didn't seem like there was even the slightest crack in the buildings. There were no plants growing anywhere in the entire city to give it some color. The only thing that seemed to really stand out in Karmus was giant black obelisk tower in the very center of the city. Looking at the tower it reminded me of the Washington Monument back home just shorter and thicker round. The steps leading up to the tower had strange golden writing all along the edges. There were men walking in and out of the tower wearing long robes that had the same golden writing around the hems. It seemed like this might be some kind of church of some kind. The men in the robes had a rather stern look on there face as if they were judging every person that walked by. Some thing told me that those men were probably why Karmus was so dull and depressing.
         I quickly found the nearest inn that had a room that I could rent. The inn keeper was a tall thin woman that reminded me a little bit like a spider. She looked me over with a look that clearly said she didn't approve of what I was wearing. All the women here wore dresses that had very high neck lines and hems that went all the way down to their ankles. The sleeves of their dresses were long as well even though during the day it was quite hot outside. How do these women walk around without falling over from heat exhaustion wearing a dress like this every day? I've got a feeling if I were forced to wear one of those dresses on a daily basis I would probably look unhappy like all the women here do.
          When I finally got my things up to the room I was going to be renting I took a deep breath knowing now I had to find this Talia Reign person. I just hoped I had enough money to keep renting this room till I found her. The last thing I wanted to worry about is getting kicked out on to the street where there wasn't even a piece of trash on the side of the road.
         "Excuse me, I was wondering if you could help me." I said tentatively approaching the inn keeper.
         "What is it?" she sighed.
         "I'm looking for a woman named Talia Reign. I was wondering if you knew where I could find her." I asked feeling like I was talking to a stern teacher.
         "I don't know who you're talking about." she snapped spinning around on her heels turning her back to me. 
         I quickly walked away feeling like I had just gotten in trouble for wasting an adults time. I was really hoping that everyone in Karmus wasn't going to be like this inn keeper. I wasn't going to get anywhere if they just snapped at me and turned their backs on me like that. Sure enough though every person I talked to through out the afternoon were the same way. No one seemed to know this Talia Reign person safe for the guard that I had met at the main gates. As soon as each person I talked to told me they don't know Talia they each gave me a rather nasty look. By the time night rolled around I hadn't gotten very far in finding Talia Reign. When I finally got back to the inn I felt like all I had managed to do is waste peoples time. With each person I spoke to it seemed like each person was less friendly than the last. All I could wonder was what had crawled up these peoples butts to make them so mean? 
         I thought that there might at the very least be one person in this entire city that would be remotely kind. After the evening I have had talking to people I wasn't sure there were any friendly people in Karmus. There was at the very least a few decent people in New York City back in my world. Here it seemed like no one knew how to show any sort of kindness towards any one. Did any of them even treat each other with any sign of kindness?
         As I walked up the steps of the inn to my room my legs felt so heavy. The bottoms of my feet were sore and felt like they were slightly on pins and needles constantly. Just carrying to plate of bread and cheese up to my room seemed a little hard for me right now. My eyelids felt so heavy from being up for more than twenty four hours. I had a feeling that there were probably dark circles underneath my eyes by now and the whites of my eyes were most likely lined with red. Right now all I wanted to do was go up to my room in the inn where there was a nice bed waiting for me to sink in to. When I wake up tomorrow I can search for Talia Reign a lot easier when I don't feel like my legs are dragging along the road.
         When I walked in to my room at the inn I had to light the oil lamps by the bed to see anything properly. It was when I turned to the high backed chair in the corner of the room by the window I nearly jumped out of my skin. Sitting in the chair was a woman that looked like she was probably in her early forties with the shaped that reminded me of a cello. Her dark chocolate skin went well with the auburn shade of her curly hair that fell down to her shoulders. I only had one word to describe her and that was beautiful. Between her full lips and the almond shape of her eyes that were a very light shade of brown. She wore the same dress as every other woman that lived in Karmus yet she seemed cool as if it was the beginning of spring. What was she doing in my room?
         "I hear that you've been looking for me." she said with a raised eyebrow.
         "You're Talia Reign?" I asked.
         "Yes no you've got five minutes to tell me what you want before I lose my temper." she sighed. "I prefer to stay out of the spot light and you wandering around asking about me is hindering that."
         I was really hoping that I didn't make a mistake by coming here to find her because she looked like she was far from in a good mood. I guess the people of Karmus' attitude must have rubbed off on her. I just hope that she doesn't lash out at me as well. I was hoping that she doesn't lash out worse than the people I spoke to today.

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