Memories of Connor's Adventures

Orlando the Adventurer pulled a Scimitar from beneath his Robes and smiled...

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Short fiction: the black dome

“It is decided! We return to the valley to investigate what is happening there.” Giyan the Elder pointed at the young warriors of the clan.
“Rest Well. It is three Suns to the Springs of Ur and we must cover the distance by the first.”
The Nemec roused from their sleep to the last evening meal in the water-caves. The wilted fungus baked in a mudpack in a fire burning even more wilted fungus as fuel. The aroma of its spores filled the caves.
The narcotic spore aroused them into assaulting their food with amorous fury.
Givan the Elder pointed to the others.
“Sataru!” Chanted his voice.
“Sataru!” Vinois the Wild cried with narcotic pleasure and the others followed.
They ran now through the night covering ground that was still warm from the terrible heat of the day. The Narcotic devoured the pain of their journey and closed the great distance into a single night.
Just before Sun, the Nemec found the foliage wall of an alien jungle and they were able to rest for a while in its shadows.
Junam the Swift drew the attention of Vinois to one plant that was obviously feeding off another.
“See it? Like a bore-beetle, it feeds off the victim until it dies.” Junam pointed at an older fallen plant that had rotted.
“It would be like waking up and finding that the wilted fungus is growing in us as we eat its spores.” Vinois cringed at the thought as he chewed down some spore.
Givan the Elder laughed at their conversation as he patted the warriors on the back.
“That is why we chew our spore, not swallow whole… Come! It is cooler further in.” Givan walked slowly into the undergrowth.
The shadow of the jungle allowed them for the first time ever to travel day and night.
They watched as foliage opened with the morning sun and tracked it across the sky. Flowers that bloomed at night closed up during the day, and others opened to replace their departure.
Junam spotted the strange flower waving a pollen tail. He could smell a strangely familiar and arousing scent.
What ever it was, it was feeding on an underground source of Wilted Fungus Spore. He stuck his face in its stamen and sniffed.
The ground at its base swelled, the stalk expanded instantly as it pushed up the narrow tube.
A strange worm burst from the foliage covered jungle floor to envelop Junam the Swift. His scream was terrible as it crushed him into a digestible juice.
The others watched as the bulge of Junam was drawn into the ground and the flower returned to being a flower.
They gave the flower-that-ate-Junam a wide birth now. Certainly the hungry plants would easily be recognised amongst the many strange plants.
The Springs of Ur fed the alien jungle. The tallest and oldest plants grew in and around the springs feeding on their life-giving power.
“The waters are poisoned with their feeding.” Givan shook his head with concern now. They needed water soon. He chewed down more spore and pushed forward through the jungle. The other Nemec followed.
They could see it as they emerged from the alien jungle that had come to infest their valley. A great black dome that was only slightly darker than the stone of the cliffs from which it had been carved.
Vinois the Wild choked on the idea of something so alien.
“How far away is it?” Vinois looked to his Elder for answers.
“Two Suns! But we must stop at Wadi Bloodwater. It is the only shelter from the Sun and there is a spring there.” Givan chewed down some Spore of the Wilted Fungus, and ran forward onto the grassed plain that separated their warriors from Wadi Bloodwater.
“Will it be any better than the other springs?” Vinois chewed down the last of his spore of wilted fungus and followed with the remaining Nemec.

No comments:

Post a Comment