Sunday, August 25, 2013
Something New, Saving for Later
I posted a little series of snippets and flash fiction pieces...gosh...a year ago, or so. They're part of something I've always wanted to work on. There's this story that keeps coming back around. Some things just take a little longer to ferment. But one of these days, I'll get it written.
There were two men coming down the road, one half-a-head taller than the other. Long, drab brown coats marked them neither Confederate nor Yankee. The slender shapes of rifles sprouted over their shoulders. The wind brought the sound of their footfalls tunneling down the path. And one of them was whistling.
A rustle in the long grass beyond the porch drew her attention. It was Annabel, skinny and sun-browned as an Indian boy, her little ash wood short bow slung over one shoulder as she belly crawled through the stalks.
”Anna!” Rees hissed. ” Come back inside.”
Annabel ignored her. ”There's strangers coming,” she whispered, and crawled toward the road.
I should never have let Henry give her that, she thought, heart pounding wildly as the men drew closer. She could make out faces now, the hints of them. Narrow cheeks scruffy with beard and the strong ridges of noses. The taller one was dark-headed, and sharp-featured. The other not blonde and not redheaded, but between, and wore his hair to his shoulders. It was the tall one who whistled. ”Dixie.”
”Rees,” Lainey's voice called from the doorway. ”What are -”
”Hush. Go back inside.”
The men were close, now. The tall one wore his beard short, his hair a thick dark cap that curled over the shells of his ears. Under black brows, his eyes were round and bright...and skipping up to her. His companion was older, she saw. Perhaps forty. There were lines on his face. He watched her too, his gaze a hot, fixed thing from down the length of the lane, and Rees shivered.
”Go inside, Lainey. Now. And close the door.”