Tendal licked his lips once more. Eyeing the large dark mass that was approaching him at a steady speed, he locked his knees into a bent position and leaned over in a small hunch. He propped his fists up to his face, blocking his chin, elbows guarding his vital organs, in a boxer’s stance. He was ready for the blunt force of Mr. Mean Muscles massive fist.
His dark pink lip curled up, snarling at Tendal. A low growl vibrated out of him. His long thick arm came swiftly up towards Tendal’s right temple. He swerved just in time and shot his arm out connecting to the meaty right rib of Mr. Mean Muscles. He jerked hard and fell to his knees. That was interesting. He was sure, he didn’t hit him that hard?
Tendal reset his position as his eyebrows relaxed from being pinched together. Maybe this was going to be easier than he thought… Bouncing slightly on the pads of his feet, he gave a moment for Mr. Mean Muscles to stand up and face him again. He was ready for round two. Mr. Mean Muscles growl got louder, he twisted awkwardly, glared at him and fell face down onto the ground. Was that seriously a knock out? He didn’t even hit his jaw?
Confusion set in as he dropped his fists to his sides and released the grip of his fingers. He lifted his arms and started to massage the knuckles that hit muscle and rib only seconds before. His eyebrow’s slowly pinched back together. Why was he still on the ground? It was then that he heard the screaming coming from beside him.
As if he were in a dream and starting to wake up, each voice came into his consciousness one after another. First Mrs. Beautiful Threat crying and screaming out the words, “No, no, stop, you don’t understand. They’re safe!” Then there was Monals’, sternly yelling at me, “ Tendal, no. He can’t be hit. Stop!”
What did Monal expect him to do, just sit here and get hurt by Mr. Mean Muscles? No way. He turned, still rubbing his knuckles when Mrs. Beautiful Threat ran into him, thrashing Tendal with her arms and fists. He tried to catch her and hold her still. It’s not like she was hurting him.
“You shouldn’t have done that. You shouldn’t have.” She slumped into him sobbing and sobbing.
He was tempted to brush her hair out of her face, hold her and comfort her, but he didn’t. He let her rest on his chest, tears soaking through until she looked up at him. His breath caught. Her beauty was so stunning and distracting. He couldn’t help slipping out the words, “I’m sorry. He came at—“
He hadn’t finish his sentence when a barrel hit him from the side. It was Mr. Mean Muscles, up and angrier than ever.
She was a deception. Shouldn’t have given in, man.
In the shove, Tendal went flying towards Monal, his face burning into the gritty ground, eating dust and gravel scratching up his arm with momentum. He finally stopped. He looked up to catch sight of his two friendly visitors. It was almost in slow motion.
Because of the hit, Mrs. Beautiful Threat went faltering backwards. Mr. Mean Muscles veins were popping out of his neck as he growled even harder wanting to come after Tendal, but he suddenly caught a glimpse of the girl falling. He turned and tried to catch her.
Tendal coughed, spat out blood and sand from his mouth, almost missing Mr. Mean Muscles expression as he reached out for her. Was that fear? Yes, definitely fear was covering his face.
An ear-piercing sound echoed through Tendal’s body as Mr. Mean Muscles missed her hand and she slipped from his grasp, landing on her left arm first. The rest of her body following after. It was then, Tendal heard the snap of a bone breaking. Instantly he cringed. He knew her arm had not only broken her fall, but her bone.
“You!” A low growl rang out towards Tendal. “You did this. This is your fault!”
Mr. Mean Muscles bent to his knees and lifted her into his arms. She wasn’t moving. He swung her limp body back and forth as he starting looking and searching around for what to do next.
Tendal shoved himself off the ground and into a sitting position. It was all desert around them, no where to go. He stood and wiped off the dust from his clothing. That comment irked him. He was sad that she got hurt, but it wasn’t his fault.
Before he could tell himself, be humble, don’t respond, let him think what he wants, the words were already out of his mouth, “If you didn’t come after me. This wouldn’t have happened. None of this!”
He wanted to add that they would be on their way to somewhere better, getting shelter, eating and doing something a lot nicer than getting beat up. But Mr. Mean Muscles was already on his way. Storming over, still holding Mrs. Beautiful Threat in his long, tree trunk arms. His nose met Tendal’s. He could feel his breath. Hear the grit in his teeth.
“I was only trying to protect her. She is fragile.” His teeth clenched and Tendal watched as the jaw muscles jumped with every word. “Now look at her!” He yelled.
Tendal let his gaze drop down at the limp body between them. She looked like sleeping beauty in the books he read. Fitting for her name. He had a crazy urge to kiss her and wake her from this mad dream. Then, his eye caught her crooked arm. Bent in an awful contorted angle. Snapped right in the middle of her forearm. His stomach turned and he pulled back, ready to throw up.
“Wow. That’s bad.” He clamped his lips shut to push back the urge that rose up in his throat. Gulped in air and realized he was the only one who could do anything. “I—I can help.”
He caught his bearings and his stomach. He ran for the entrance door of their old home. Swung open the door and hurried down the corridor. Ripping off a piece of his shirt, he wrapped it around his face trying to keep the stench and memory out of his decaying parents. He climbed down the stairs. He needed to act fast.
When he got back to the surface with all of their first aid supplies, he laid them out and propped a blanket out along the earth’s surface, pulling at the edges. He took out some water and washed down the last bit of dirt and blood that seemed caked to the roof of his mouth.
Then, he drenched his hands with the rest of the water. He took out the rubbing alcohol bottle and did the same thing. He waved his hands in the air, drying them and drew attention to himself.
“Here. Lay her down here.” He called out to Mr. Mean Muscles.
He walked over and laid her down gently before Tendal.
“Monal, crush this medicine into a water bottle. Shake it and have it ready for her when she wakes up.”
Tendal looked into Mr. Mean Muscles, even meaner looking eyes. “You need to be ready when she wakes up in pain to hold her still. This will hurt her.”
Anger flashed in his eyes, and then understanding. He grunted his acceptance.
“I need to find out which bone this is and how close it is to the main artery. I don’t see any internal bleeding. That’s a good thing” He wanted to smile, but knew that wouldn’t be appropriate. Instead, he ran his finger along the bone, protruding against her smooth skin, up to her pinky finger. His stomach turned and he sucked in a large breathe. “I think it’s her Ulna bone. I will start to reset it now.”
Monal edged closer to the blanket, encouraging Mr. Mean Muscles with a smile and saying, “He’s had to do this before. I was running around the house and tripped. Pretty bad break and he was great. Well, as great as you can be in this type of situation.” She patted his arm and he stared at her for a long moment. Then, he turned to Tendal.
“Be very careful.” Each word was drawn out, his voice calm and serious. “They can break so fast. Don’t over do it. Or she will shatter.” He looked back at Monal, “Literally.”
Tendal could see Monal shiver at his words out of the corner of his eye. Okay, so she is super fragile. That explains why her bone broke after a normal fall.
“I will be.” Tendal tried to reassure.
Carefully, he examined the best way to quickly place the bones back. He swallowed done the saliva building in his mouth and shook out the nerves rattling his fingers. He clenched his fist, released, and started working. He gently pulled and quickly snapped the bone back into place. It was done.
Immediately, his body released a mound of tension he didn’t realize he was holding in. Like a balloon too full and ready to burst at any given moment. He let out a sigh as Mrs. Beautiful Threat quietly woke with a whimper. Then, a scream.
“Quick, Monal. Give her some pain medication. I still need to brace it.”
Monal was by her side in an instant. Rubbing her hair, speaking softly and giving her sips of the medicated water.
Tendal heard the rumble of Mr. Mean Muscles deep voice, “Shhh, Aurora, everything is going to be okay.”
Aurora? Surprised by her real name, his eyebrows shot up. A beautiful name for a beautiful women. A beautiful sleeping women he wished to wake on better circumstances. Tendal noted that the man beside him at least cared for the beautiful girl. Tendal could relate to that. He gave him a curt nod and pulled out two think wooden pieces.
Now that she was calmer, he began winding badges around her arm and splinting the break. There was no way to know if he damaged anything in the process. But he was certain he did alright. He leaned back on his heels and handed Mr. Mean Muscles some medication.
“Here. This will help with the pain for her later. She will need it. This will need to heal for a long time.”
“Can I have some too?” His voice cautious.
“Why?” Tendal asked, bewildered.
Mr. Mean Muscles looked over at Aurora. Almost as if to ask something. She just nodded at him, tears seeping out of her eyes.
“I can’t handle pain.” His head drooped down over his shoulders. “At all. It’s my defect.”
Before anyone could answer, a noise rattled out. At first, he thought it was another earthquake and braced for it. Then, he realized it was something else. Almost a whoop, whoop, whoop-ing sound. Like something was chopping through the air. Mr. Mean Muscles instantly scooped Aurora into his arms.
“Quick. It’s the King. We need to get out of here. Hide!”
“What? Wait… What king?” Tendal had no time to think. Mr. Mean Muscles and Monal were already running into the shelter of their old home. He gathered up all the supplies scattered around him and starting running with them.
He shut the door behind them and was met with a mass of panting air swirling in front of him and a nasty stench invading his nose. He pulled the ripped material from earlier, back over his nose with one hand, and with the other gripped the supplies against his body.
“Who was that and what do they want?” His voice muffled out.
“They will kill you if they find you.” The white of Mr. Mean Muscles eyes glowed in the shadows around them.
“Who? Who wants to kill us?” Tendal’s voice was frantic.
“The King!” His voice growled out.
There was a pause. The sound was getting closer. Mr. Mean Muscles eyes widened and glowed with more intensity.
He was serious and that means that these two were our ally’s and whoever was out there, was our enemy.
to be continued…….
Disclaimer: This is unedited and is under copyright law, 2016. No one can use any part of this work or any of the Residuum Series without permission.
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