Ok guys so I've decided to post the beginning of a story I'm writing to see if it's worth continuing. Right now I have about thirteen chapters and this is the first or prologue. It might be a little confusing with just this part but the purpose is to draw the reader in. So basically if you could just read it and give any criticisms or pointers you have that would be great, don't be afraid to be harsh in your comments I f you guys like it I can post the next chapter or few later on. soooo here it is.....
Erine strode through the desolate streets of Hendrill with a confidence he had not felt in years. His heart raced with excitement and long forgotten energy coursed through his veins, pushing him forward. Sand rose from the dry earth and clouded his feet and filled his lungs. He did not cough, this was his time, our time.
The sun beat down upon the dusty shacks that lined the street, glinting off tin roofs and shattered glass. The street was wide and silent but for Erine's heavy steps. They have backed down, he thought, they talked strong but when the time came they gave up and are now hiding behind locked doors. He did not care, this was his time and nothing would stop him.
Following the dry, silent streets, Erine made his way to the center of town and as he did a noise rose from the distance, a cheer, a yell. Rounding the final corner he stepped into the town square and smiled with pride. The entire town was there; farmers, blacksmiths, shop owners, men, women, children, grandfathers and grandmothers. No one had stayed home. No one had given up.
The circular center of town was filled and as men and women brandishing shovels and torches yelled together in a final defiance Erine made his way to the center. Scrambling atop a stool with a record player on it, the gramophone letting out a fast paced song of fiddles and trumpets, he looked out over the mass of people and yelled out for silence.
The people close to the stool heard him and instantly began shouting for quiet as well until the entire mass was still and silent. Booming out in as loud a voice he had Erine addressed his town.
"My people of Hendrill, my friends and family, we have been through a great deal of hardships, pain and suffering in the last ten years, in the years since the city arrived. We have seen loved ones die, crops fail and brutalities beyond imagining.
We have become poor and starved as cartfuls of riches speed past us every day. We have become sick as our land has become sick and are dying as our land is dying. We cannot leave for the city would follow and kill us with ease, we cannot hide for the ollphiests would burn down the entire town to find and kill each and every one of us.
We have nothing left, no crops or water, no weapons or armor, nothing but the strength in our hearts and farm tools in our hands. The city has made a dangerous enemy for they have made one that has nothing to lose. We are dying, slowly, and as the sun beats down on us today in an ever glaring heat and the dust of our dead land fills our lungs the city will know, the Ollphiests will know, there is more than one person in this town with strength left to fight. There is more than one person here who hasn't become a cowardly shadow of defeat!"
As Erine said the last sentence he shouted across the town square in a voice as fierce and as loud as a lion. The crowd responded similarly and pitchforks and shovels where clanked together loudly and clubs and torches where raised into the reddening sky.
Erine stepped down from the stool and pushed his way through the mass as people slapped his back and shook his shoulders. Grabbing an old farming hoe that leaned against one of the buildings lining the square he turned and waited, the worn smooth pole clutched tightly in his fingers.
They did not have to wait long. Just as the glaring sun rose above the final rooftops of the town and lit the red sky, a dark shape moved across and blocked out the light. Propellers wired and the red blimp hung above the town for a moment in silence. The ship was like one you would see out in the ocean. Erine was reminded of the great port and fishing town of Helcan where cargo ships scattered among the expanse of docks like birds at rest.
Above the wooden ship, where the masts and sails would have been, a great red blimp hung, attached to the ship by thick ropes. The crowd had quieted as the ship appeared but now a murmur began to spread, becoming louder as time passed.
The ship, hanging in the sky, was too high for anyone on the ground to see onto its deck and from it's silence seemed abandoned. Then without warning rope ladders were thrown off the sides and trailed down to the town, almost reaching the ground. The ends still hung from the ship and in a mater of seconds figures began appearing from the sides and made their way down the ladders.
At first the towns’ people couldn't make them out, squinting up into the sun shinning out from behind the ship. Then as the figures climbed down further Erine could see them clearly, silhouetted by the sunlight. They had the bodies of humans but there skin, burnt and pierced, revealed they weren’t, couldn't be, people. Rusted armor glinted off the ladders and great weapons of iron spears and long swords were clutched in the figure's hands, in the Ollpheist's hands.
The mass of frightened farmers and leatherworkers, waitresses and millers, brandished there now seemingly toy like weapons of hammers and sharpened sticks. Children as young as six or even younger coward between their parents legs, some holding pots and rocks as weapons. The Ollphiests descended and the people gathered closer together, pressing themselves into a tight mass.
Erine raised his farming hoe, his heart raced with no longer excitement but fear, this was it, this was our time. Torches crackled and flickered in the heat and children cried with fear and the propellers whirred and swords clinked above, all else was silent. The Ollphiests descended without a noise and more came, hundreds streamed out from the ship far above but the people below stood their ground, waiting to die for their land.
As the first creatures came within a hundred feet from the ground, scrambling down each rung of the ladders in frantic excitement, Erine could hear their teeth gnashing, their armor and weapons clink, and their throats letting out growls like wolves. A few of the townspeople shrank to the ground in fear as the Ollphiests came closer and some even ran off between buildings and out of Hendrill screaming, the rest stood strong and glared up into their attackers.
When the first of the creatures reached the end of the ladders and jumped to the ground the battle began, it did not start with a clash. A resounding crash of metal on metal as the first blow was exchanged, but with a scream, a scream from a man who was cut down as one of the Ollphiests jumped to the ground. The scream began the fight and afterward all was chaos.
Men and women ran at the ladders, weapons raised, clambering over each other in selfish need for revenge, yelling as they went. All had lost family, friends and livelihoods to these creatures and now all desired blood, slashing at the Ollphiests in angry blindness, not caring who or what was in the way. The battle was a stage for mindless violence, sides where not clear and all fought with anger, stabbing at friends and enemies.
Erine was at the edge of the mass and picked his victims more carefully, slashing at the throats of any Ollphiests that came his way. The farming hoe was long and light and he swung it with ease, plunging the wide blade into the creature's throats and pulling it out as they fell. Men and women ran in front of him but he stayed his hand until they passed.
The battle was not loud, as Erine would have thought but distant, dull thuds sounding miles away. Screams constantly echoed out through the air but they silenced quickly as the screamer died and weapons clashed with dull thuds, swords meeting clubs and spears meeting flesh. The loudest noises where those of weapons meeting armor but those were seldom and far apart as the Ollphiests where the only ones wearing any.
Looking around Erine realized he was fighting in not a battle, but a slaughter. Friends fell around him covered in blood, clutching weapons protruding from their stomachs, or heads sliding to the ground as their decapitated bodies fell. The ollphiests were soldiers, an army with weapons made for war and armor of steel. The towns people, they had tools, pots and shovels to defend themselves, cloth and leather to defend their bodies. The Ollphiest continued to stream down the ladders and jump onto the growing pile of bodies, some bringing lit torches and setting the surrounding buildings ablaze.
The battle continued but Erine knew it was done; it had been done before the blimp had arrived. They had no chance against these monsters and yet they all knew, and while knowing stood their ground and prepared to die fighting. Erine looked out and felt the pride return as he watched friends die mercilessly, they had stood their ground against an enemy impossible to defeat and defended a land already dead.
Turning back to the space before him Erine ducked as an Ollphiest swung a battleaxe at his head, rolled past him and turning stuck the blade of the hoe into the back of the creature's skull. Another attacker lunged at Erine from behind and knocked into his back with a shield. Stumbling to the ground he looked up to see an Ollphiest standing over him, raising a long, thin sword above it's head.
The sun glinted off the blade and into Erine's eyes just as the weapon came plunging down.
The battle had lasted a mere rising of the sun and by the time it reached the height of the sky, above the red blimp, a pile of bodies larger and taller than a hill filled the center of town. The majority of the corpses were the starved townspeople, their small boney figures easy to spot next to armored Ollphiests.
The blimp revved its propellers and as the last of the monsters scrambled up the ladders it took off into the sky leaving the sun to gleam down onto glistening blood. The fires that had been set by the Ollphiests burned on and within a week the entire town turned to ashes leaving nothing but the stool and record player that still sat in the center, beneath the bodies. The gramophone continued to let out music but the tune had changed to something slow and dreary, like funeral music.