A newcomer to Layor brushes up against the locals.
Photo: Pixabay public domain
Esraen scanned the others waiting to view the ancient monument and stooped, conscious of his foreigner’s height. At the market, he’d seen others with Jovo blood. Here, at someone else’s religious site, he stood out. His skin was reddest. His hair the darkest. The only man with long hair, the only one with braids.
No wonder their looks whispered, “Oppressor.”
The prophet’s monument loomed higher as the crowd crept closer. Back home there would have been an orderly line. Here, nobody could keep shoulders and elbows apart.
“Elshka.” Esraen winced at his pronunciation. One word for please or sorry or excuse me. Such a fuzzy people. Tuomon had eight words for “sorry” alone. How did they ever understand each other?
He studied the locals, tried to really see them. Touching, laughing, frowning. Even without language, you can learn.
A woman bumped him, tripped, started falling. He reached out and caught her, forgetting to first wonder if that was rude.
Her face flowed from gratitude to disgust to fear.
“Elshka,” Esraen pled. “Elshka.” He smiled warmth to her, willing her to see him.
She nodded. “Oslava.” One word for thank you, no burden. Hesitant, she smiled. “Oslava.”
It was a start.
Word count: 200. Esraen is a character in my novel in progress, “Corwallen Manor.” This is a scene that happens “off stage” because the trip to the town is told from the POV of another character, who didn’t go to the prophet’s monument. Now I wonder what else happened to Esraen on this trip, since Hallen (the other character) didn’t say much about that.
This is my submission to this week’s Sunday Photo Fiction challenge. Thanks to Al Forbes for hosting, and for providing the photo prompt, below. To see the other stories or submit your own, click here.
Photo credit: Al Forbes