The Aresan Clan is published four times a week (Tue, Wed, Fri, Sun). You can see what's been written so far collected here. All posts will be posted under the Aresan Clan label. For summaries of the events so far, visit here. See my previous serial Vampire Wares collected here.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Vampire Wares pt 24

To reach the wall walk where the sentries perambulated atop the wall required one to exit the convent, circle around the wall, and enter from the opposite side.  The reason was that the wall enclosed both the convent and the village of Terem right next to it, but there was no way to travel from the convent to the village, without fully exiting the convent.  A more convenient route from the convent to village, such as opening a door in one of the walls that separated the two sections, was opposed by the convent, who preferred to keep themselves mostly sequestered from the commerce of normal life.

As Sister Oana stepped out of the gates of the convent, earlier that day, she walked on a well-trodden path leading around the walls to the main gates of the village.  The villagers used this path every Sunday when they went to attend the Sunday service conducted in the church upon the convent grounds.

Reaching the main gate, Sister Oana stepped through, and stepped into the middle of a bustling city center.  In front of her was the main square where several stores and stalls sold goods to the crowds of eager customers.  The streets were paved with stones that horses and wagons walked across and at the heart of the square was a flowing fountain around which people sat and children played.  The village of Terem, that Sister Oana stepped into was, due to the wall that protected it from vampire attacks, the most thriving village in the area.

Sister Oana walked down a side street leading to the office of the guards, behind which she could see the stairs leading up to the top of the wall.  A pikeman named Cezar stood guard in front, holding his long pike in hand, while a loaded arquebus rested against the wall beside him.

“Could you direct me to the captain of the guard,” she asked Cezar.

“Captain Flaviu’s asleep sister,” he said politely, “And he doesn’t like to be woken unless it’s urgent.”

“Then can you deliver a message?” She asked, “I just want him to tell the sentries to look out for one of my novices.  I suspect that she’s been sneaking around at night.  She might even be trying to sneak out of the convent.  She’s a small girl, about twelve years old, with dark hair.”

“You didn’t have to come all the way around here to tell me this, Sister,” Cezar said, “You could’ve just called to one of the sentries on the wall when he passed by.  I’m sure they’d be glad pass on the message.”

“I didn’t want to bring any attention to myself,” Sister Oana said, “We don’t want this novice to find out she’s being watched.”

“Understood,” he said, “I’ll tell the sentries.  But you don’t have to worry about her getting out at night.  She’d have to raise the portcullis, which is hardly something you could do without someone noticing.  It’s about as quiet as a tiptoeing cannonball, I’d say.”

“This girl is quite inventive,” Sister Oana said, “She’s like a sly little mouse sneaking through the cracks in the walls.  She’d already managed to climb up onto the top of the roof of the novitiate.  She was probably up there looking for a way over the wall.”

“Why ever would one girl be so determined to get out of there?” the pikeman wondered, “You feed her, you clothe her.  It’ a cruel world out there.  She’d probably get devoured before she could enjoy her freedom.”

“Because she’s young and naive,” Sister Oana sighed, “That’s why little girls like her need adults to look after them.”  Cezar nodded with understanding.

When Sister Oana returned to the convent shortly thereafter she called together Madalina’s three roommates, Dorina, Nicoleta and Mirela.  She ordered the three girls to join her in the courtyard and there she said to the three of them: “As you know, your roommate Madalina has been sneaking out at night without permission.  Such behavior cannot be tolerated.  If she is caught out of her room at night without permission again, not only will she be punished severely, but you three with her.”

“But Sister,” the three girls objected.

“No argument!” Sister Oana cut them off, “You will share the punishment with her, for permitting her to do this.  If she has to be locked in the crypt again, you will be locked with her.  If she has to clean the whole church top to bottom, you will have to clean it beside her.  Am I understood?”

“Yes sister,” the three girls replied with dour consent.

“I don’t think you understand the gravity of this,” Sister Oana said, “There will be no leniency and I can assure I will keep this promise no matter what.  I do not tolerate disobedience.”

<-- Go to Part 23         Go to Part 25 -->

You can see what's been written so far collected here.

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