The Aeolian Master - Book One - Revival HTML version

down Fifth Street and rounded the corner at the intersection of Gem. She headed for the edge of the dome all
the while keeping an eye out for other patrol craft. Several times she heard chatter over the radio, and once she
was sure the dispatchers were calling her craft. She knew she had to hurry. She pushed down on the pedal
increasing the speed. Finally they came to the end of the street. She stopped the flier, and opened the door.
She ran around to the other side and helped the strange man out. She led him to the bushes where a hidden
tunnel would take them safely out of the city.
As she was searching for the hatch she heard the hum of another patrol craft. She had the stranger crouch
down, then she continued her search. She found the handle buried in the grass and pulled with a hefty heave
lifting metal and grass to get the small hatch open. Just then she saw lights as the craft came around the corner.
She parted the branches of the bush very slightly and watched as the craft came to a halt next to the other one.
The door opened on the driver’s side, and a patroller got out of the craft. He turned and looked right at Viella.
It was as if he knew she was there, or maybe he heard a noise. She wanted to let go of the branches, but she
was afraid that the movement would give her away, so she continued to stare at him expecting him to draw his
phasor and start shooting. But instead, he turned and went to the vacated patrol craft and looked inside.
She didn’t wait to see what else he would do. She let go of the branches and stooped beside the stranger.
She took his hand and pointed, indicating for him to go down the metal ladder and into the tunnel. It was with a
sense of relief that he understood what she wanted him to do, and he started down. She went in after, closing
the hatch quietly behind her.
Viella, shaky and nervous as she surveyed the surroundings, expected Hurd’s patrollers to come rushing out
of the dome at any moment, to snatch them up and haul them off to their doom. She turned her head over her
shoulder and looked back at the dome—she could see no activity. She looked ahead again, and all was quiet,
too quiet, like calm sands in the desert night, just before the hurricane winds. She quickly grabbed the
stranger’s gloved hand in hers and started off in the cold night air toward the mountains in the far distance. She
was angry with herself—she could be home now sleeping in a nice comfortable bed, dreaming peacefully, but
no, she ignored her brother’s advice, and now she was running for her life.
As they hurried along she kept a close watch, not only on the surroundings, but also the air above. She knew
Hurd would be intently searching the city by now, sending out squadrons of patrollers, hundreds of men to look
in every corner and all reaches of the city to find these rebels and to bring them to justice. He would be
confused and extremely angry. How could anyone not only escape the deadly whirling blades of a scent, but
also destroy it and bring down two armed patrollers? It was almost impossible, but this event would fuel his
hatred for the rebels and would compel him to cover all avenues of escape. And just to be sure, he would send
patrol craft above the plains to search the lands of the toral on the off chance that these rebels had the audacity
to think they could escape through the plains.
Viella didn’t care a damn about Hurd and his patrollers, she knew if she and the stranger could make it to the
mountains before sunrise, they could escape into the sparsely forested trees and from there they would find their
way to the mountain people where they would be hidden and cared for, and Hurd would never find them.
She picked up the pace, but not too fast as she had to watch for the toral, the most feared, natural enemy on
The two moons had risen from the horizons, one from the East and one from the West, and since the moon,
traveling from the East, was smaller and closer to Ar, it was traveling faster. This meant the two glowing orbs
would cross each other’s paths somewhere in the West in a couple of hours. The radiance they gave off
produced an unworldly appearance on the surrounding landscape. It had an ethereal look. Double shadows
were cast upon the ground, and only where the shadows of the objects overlapped were the shadows black, like
that of the sun's shadows. The others were a hazy grey in the darkness.
In the subdued light Viella could see small plants and bushes scattered over the terrain. Big trees, more
popularly called ‘Beast Trees,’ because of the toral, grew at random, sometimes three or four clumped close
together, sometimes far apart, and unlike the trees of a forest, they were sparsely situated over the fields. Their
height was short, a mere ten feet at the most, but their gnarled branches radiated out and ran parallel to the
ground for thirty or forty feet. From their twisted branches hung a purple fruit about the size of a man’s closed