Luca Sayer looked down at the gashing wound on his stomach with quite a bit of disbelief, trying desperately to hold the blood in with his hands only and wondered where his life had gone so terribly wrong. One minute, all you want to do in life is become a Dragon Hunter – one of those prestigious, famous military people from the Capital – and the next you’re being ambushed by bandits, who seem to think that you have a lot more money than you actually do!
He had been on his way to the Capital when the bandits had found him. Or rather, they had been lying in wait and had simply pounced at the right moment. Luca hadn’t even made it to the city yet, or asked to become one of them, for that matter! He had left his small home town of Leafall in the morning three days ago, and had set out with only some necessities. Some clothes, the good-luck charm his mother had given him when he had been a little boy, and ten silvers. Ten silvers! That was all he had, yet somehow these bandits seemed to think him very worthy of robbing!
He sighed, leaning into the hard tree trunk he was hiding behind. He hadn’t heard the group of criminals for a little while, and what he had noticed so far was that they were anything but stealthy! Again, he sighed, blaming the attack only on himself.
Carefully, he stuck his head out. The forest behind him was silent, almost eerily so. He knew if this had been a story his Grandma was telling him he would be doomed, but this wasn’t a story, and the forest really was quiet. Maybe he could run for it, somehow make it to the next town before bleeding out completely on the soft forest floor. He was supposed to be – no, destined to be! – a Dragon Hunter! He couldn’t end like this!
He took a deep breath in, and moved awkwardly to the next tree. The pain from the angry-looking gash was almost too much to handle, but he had to get away from this group of delinquents somehow. If he didn’t he’d be done for, he knew that much. From his small backpack he took some of his spare clothes, tied them together at the ends, and did his best to dress the wound which wouldn’t stop leaking blood, no matter how much he protested. It was still bleeding a worrying amount, but maybe now he could last long enough.
“Are you all right? Maker, are you bleeding?”
His head jerked up in shock at hearing a voice other than his own. The most beautiful woman he had ever seen stood before him, wearing one of these beautiful, airy dresses he knew girls liked wearing these days. She looked genuinely concerned as her dark brown eyes looked him over, and quickly leaned down next to him.
“Take off that bandage. I’ve got something that should numb the pain, at least. We can get you back to my hut where I can see to your wound properly, it’s not far from here.” Luca scowled at himself. Take it off? He had only just gotten it around his stomach!
He was surprised to find himself doing as she had asked.
“This will sting a little.” He bit his teeth together, preparing himself for the worst when a sharp pain pierced his flesh and seemingly his soul, too. Next to him, the beautiful woman smiled empathetically. “There, you’re doing well. It’s almost over.” He was just thinking that he couldn’t imagine something like this would ever stop hurting, when his middle suddenly grew numb. “Is that better? If you can still feel it I may have to use more.”
Quickly he shook his head. “That’s great, thank you.”
Happy that she had done a good job, she smiled warmly at him, extending a hand. “Come now. Get up slowly, take your time, and we can get you over to mine. I’ve got more medicines there and proper equipment, I can stitch you back together there.”
Luca looked down at his wound which was still bleeding but less furiously so, and which, as if by magic, he couldn’t feel at all. He accepted the hand of his beautiful saviour, and wondered how his life had turned out so wonderfully.
All of my 10-Minute stories are improvised, unplanned, and unedited apart from spelling and grammar mistakes. The idea is to kick-start the dreaded Monday with a short, creative exercise without thinking about it, and simply writing for the sake of writing.
For all other 10-Minute shorts, take a look here.