By Jennifer Klepsch
The air is stiffening hot. The scorching sun’s heat made everything torrid. Hundreds of people sit under a tent dressed in their killing gear, waiting for the confirmation of their look-out soldiers in the hills to the adjacent right. The blazing heat is no match for what anger the group feels.
The council of men and women stand in the middle of the crowd. A tall dark-haired soldier, Stark pulls a knife from his sheath and raises the long shiny thick blade.
We can’t let these giants overrun and kill us again. They have maimed, bloodied, and beheaded us just to take a small Isle like this. It’s over. An eye for an eye!
Alora shouts, “We will take everything from them and slowly torture the beasts, piece by piece. Payback for the grisly distress those cowards inflicted on us.
A grief-stricken woman falls to the ground screaming, “They have taken the life of our child. I hate them, Let’s maim and kill them, one by one!
The distressed woman spits on the ground.
Armor picks up the bullhorn and places in on his parched tan lips. He makes a frightening charging sound of a bison and yells:
“Harden your hearts and your shields, nothing! Nothing gets in our way to annihilate them!!! Crush them!!!”
“Crush them! Crush them! Crush them all!” the people raved.
Further back in the crowd you can see once innocent mothers banding together shouting, whispering, crying, and yelling out deafening screams. A sad scene of mangled hair, bloody clothes, and souvenirs of their just buried beloved children and husbands. Their faces showing their hate and bitterness. Their sharpness is now a sting for the enemy.
Gracen, a woman almost 6-and-a-half feet tall stares at her torn distraught people, silently praying that this fight would get in God’s hands. Some of the audience look up at her, noticing the woman’s slightly radiant face, still showing signs of hope.
Gracen quietly walks away. When she reaches a distance for no one to hear she voices:
“There is no way out of this, we are going to have to fight,” Gracen sighs and bends her head.
She bites her fingernails, just to taste she is still alive and with a nervous twitch, weeps loudly.
“Hey Gracen!” shouts Cora.
Not far away stands a tall woman in fighting gear. Fire lights show off the shiny copper suit that doesn’t hide her deep feminine features. It is armor made for a woman’s build. Her deep piercing green eyes show through the visor in the helmet. Sweat is dripping in an opening in the neck made it look like tears. The men are always intrigued by her, but she always seems to keep her focus.
Gracen looks up to see her sister standing stately with her armor on.
Cora walks over to Gracen.
“You know we’ll find a way to beat this with a good conscience. Abner has another plan he’s prevised. We will find a way to beat these half-giants.
“Where is Abner?”
“He’s back there by the rocks with a group of our strongest,” Cora nods.
Gracen’s head turns a bit to glance at Abner and his group.
Cora walks toward Gracen and pulls her toward the direction of the activity. Closer and closer they walk until they could view plainly.
“Gracen, tell me what you see.”
She wipes her brow and some stray tears as she cries for the dead.
“Cora, they are mixing something in large pots. Okay!”
She looks slightly to the right. The fire lights are on as it wasn’t daylight yet. She sees them dropping a messy heavy liquid into smaller pouches.
“And —they and they are putting the brown stuff on the arrow points and shooting at practice targets.”
Her nervous hands shake, making the dried blood on them uncomfortable for her. “What is that going to do?”
“Maybe nothing, maybe everything. These bad breeds have a weakness from their giant heritage. If it works, it will freeze them so we can send them out to the seas without their ship.
If it doesn’t, we will fight to the death to defend ourselves. You, Gracen, will know if they try to storm into the hiding place where you and the kids will be and a few of our young to carry on for us.
Gracen’s tears run down her face again. She wipes it forgetting about the crusted blood on her hands from a youth slashed by the enemy sword. Tears melted and the red bled on her hardened pink lips — she tastes death.
“So, lift us up in prayer and pray for the best. It will be what it will be.”
It is now early morning. The healers are at camp with food encouraging everyone to eat.
“You have to nourish your body to fight today, and fight you will,” cries out a tall tan healer named Basil. His hair is tied back and strapped. Eat this now or die like a coward.”
A short husky, plump man stands up and takes a share of food from the healer.
“I’ll roll to that,” he says.
“Yes, Yes, say that again and we might just take you up on that and use your fat behind to roll you like a bowling ball against the enemy,” yells Massimo.
The fat plump man bursts out into a broken laugh, “Ha, Ha, Ha, Hee.”
Part of the camp breaks out in laughter. One rigid man slaps his hands on his lap, bursting into tears while laughing.
Some of the women look up, still grief-stricken and heavy eyes somewhat lightened by the humor, began to line up for their share of the food.
A pale-skinned woman touches her face covered with mud. “Throw the tainted earth in their faces. That’ll be lethal to those giants. Let’s show them what human really is. They’ll be sticks in the mud caste out to sea for the sharks.”
“Away from this earth, begone you demons,” the people yell.
The horn blows and everyone is quiet. A very handsome man holds the horn, his hair like coal that hangs on his shoulders, his eyes as blue as the sea. A dimple shows below his right cheek. Many a woman wanted to be his wife but have failed. His name is Amor. He looks up toward the hills and reads the language of the lookouts.
Everyone is quiet, quiet enough just to hear the ocean moving.
“They say the whales are slowly coming toward shore, we are moving forward. This is the best plan we have.”
Amor speaks in a melodic tone of voice, “Eat people. Eat. Our time ap-pro-a c h e s.”
Brea, a beautiful stout woman stands up. Her golden blond curls beam in the now rising sun as it covers the top half of her body. She opens her mouth to speak and her voice cracks, ignoring it, she begins a chant.
“This Isle is ours. It is our origin.”
The people wild-eyed fixate on the brave woman standing and repeat her words finishing the fighter’s chant.
“This Isle is ours. It is our origin
Here for a century me and my kin.
We are here to be dead
with our bones and flesh
mingled into these grounds
Or Alive we stand to dwell
victorious against the demon spell.
Defeat, Defeat, Down!”
“People,” yells Amor. “The giants will beach their ship—they want to take over this island. Yes, beach your ship, so we can burn it to the ground. They cannot leave again, only to return. Fight to the death! Sit now and contemplate. Plan your part of attack and be able to change it. Concentrate on your worth.”
In silence the people ruminate. The speedy ocean waves whish against the beige sand that soothes the glassy seas arrival. You can see clearly for miles and miles. While looking towards the waters the people quietly prepare for battle and they reminisce in their minds for the skirmish, something they were deprived of while being slaughtered in their sleep.
Maybe twenty minutes passes. The sound of the waves captures the people attention.
“Look the distant waves are wake. The demon ship approaches,” yells Massimo.
The people change the scene to a military structure. A group of soldiers are in front ready to be the first to sacrifice their lives. Behind them is Abner and his crew ready to shoot arrows with hopefully poisoned earth lethal to giants and maybe half-giants. Machines are ready to blast the deadly substance on them.
Delancey and Ember stand next to Cora. Gracen and the children are nowhere in sight.
The smell of blood, tainted earth and revenge threatens to wreak havoc.
Beaten flesh sweats in the burning sun. The people are like one, a tight unit.
Brea yells, “They’re bringing that crusty boat ashore. Let them!
Milo, a man of action says, it is no surprise, watch these things do the most unethical move.”
He raises his sword pointing to the right. On the left a hidden crew of soldiers, sneak into the boat to look for hostages.
The enemy stands and ponders, spitting toward the Forgotten Isle people. They bring small children out in front on the moist sand.
One of them stands in front of the others. The beast was 15 foot high, looking like a man, yet clearly not, with hoofs as feet and hair covering his whole body. Not an animal not a man, not from this world.
The leader Boat speaks, “Put your weapons down or we will kill these small humans.”
In an instant smoke bombs are everywhere. Another crew of soldiers rush the children away. These giants have sensitive eyes to smoke bombs filled with the lethal weapon meant for them. The 15 feet demons stand frozen for 2 minutes. The Forgotten Isle people move in closer and set in for a closer strike.
The horn blows again. You could feel the fear overwhelmed by anger and the unrelenting willingness to fight.
All the beasts, so far counting 20 of them start to run toward the people.
Stark and Basil shoot the lethal substance to their faces and pass their arrow gear to other men. Both run back to the machines on the ground and begin shooting.
Stark shouts, “It is not affecting them as well. They have the nerve to come to us without weapons to kill us with their bare hands. So, give it a minute and switch to human bile dart swords, then switch back to the lethal mud.”
Basil sees his soldiers being picked up and bodies ripped in half. There is no time for grief. The bile dart swords start to rip the beasts enough to tear arms and legs off, but they keep fighting.
Smoke, blood, and a green stench of these beasts as they bleed, along with sand and mouthfuls of revenge fills the air, so thick you could cut it.
Basil and Stark signal to switch over to the lethal substance.
Pounds and pounds of brown tainted earth shot into every giant. Their stenchy bodies and green blood fell to the ground.
Starks yells, “Watch out they can still move.”
At that moment, those innocent grief-stricken mothers run toward the fallen creatures and slash them with knives dipped in the lethal mud. One was bitten to death by a beast but didn’t care, she kept on slashing until she died.
Twenty giants lay on the bloodied sand.
Milo and men tie them to horses and drag them to the waters. Everyone clears the area.
“What a sight, seeing these monsters floating in the waters, it could have easily been us,” Milo sighs.
Abner signaled the lookouts. They answer his call the horn of warning.
Milo, cries out, “Did you count 20? I counted 21.”
Stark’s eyes swell in fear. “Soldiers come with me.”
Cora lines up first and runs after Stark.
“Weapons ready!” she shouts.
Of course, they head toward the hidden place below the mountain.
The victory scene changes to Gracen screaming for help, the kids scrambling away as told to. If they were to help her, they would never live to carry on the heritage.
“Help!” Gracen yells, she ceases to move and just before the giant attempts to snap her neck, Stark shoots a bile dart sword that slashes his head and Cora shoots lethal mud into his eyes. The leader beast named Boat falls to the ground, while Basil catches Gracen.
“Drag it to the waters,” Milo says.
Basil listens for any sign of life from Gracen. She isn’t breathing so Basil pounds on her heart, again and again, and again. With tears rolling down his eyes, he kept his hands steady. Again, he pounds. He breathes into her mouth the breath of life. There is a pulse.
Gracen opens her eyes and looks at Basil, who ever so gently kisses her lips.
Back at the ocean waters there is a frensy going down. Whales and sharks are feasting on the carcasses of dead beasts. A phenomenon that probably will never be seen again.
Amor watches the scene without guilt and says to Cora, “Our ancestors taught us how to beckon the sea dwellers only for a worthy cause.”
“This is the cause,” responds Cora who is relieved the worse is over and her close friend Gracen is still alive.
Milo groans, “Tomorrow we will give homage to our dead and the sacrifices they made.”
For weeks there is always a group watching to make sure the fighting is really over, looking and waiting for any more of those monsters to show up. The people of Forgotten Isle rested. They took care of one another and survived, thanking each other for contributing in any way. Mothers and couples adopted children to mix with their own.
The sky is sunlit, not a cloud in sight. A light breeze touches the Island. The trees whisked their fragrant plumeria flower. The gentle waves caress against the beach sands while the ocean reflecting like glass is peaceful yet telling its own story.
There is a quiet celebration. Children are playing. Not all faces smile, but all are calm and harmonious. The atmosphere is easeful.
Abner is greeting and encouraging his people. At the last table he sees the newly married. He looks over at Basil and Gracen now a couple. Speaking so they could hear him, he voices,
“Yes, and Basil you are indeed a healer!” he jokingly smiles and walks away then travels up a long path to lookout mountain. He holds a speaker to his mouth.
“We are a people that have a bond, that is how we survive. We have survived,” yells Abner from the hills.
Jennifer Klepsch has skills in teaching and office administration. She loves the art of storytelling. “Why don’t you just write it?” was often spoken to her, so she began her writing career. Presently working on a children’s book series and a young adult futurism novel.