This post is for the Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers (FFfAW) Challenge, run by Priceless Joy. This week’s photo prompt was provided by Scott of Scott’s Place. Thank you, Scott The challenge is that you write a story of 75-175 words inspired by the picture prompt below. I hope you like it.
“It’s just not right.” Steall idly scratched Noble’s neck as the horse head-butted his chest. He barely noticed the rain drenching him – troubled thoughts consumed his attention.
His only task was to look after the troop’s mounts. Overhearing the knights as they talked around their campfires and in the taprooms of roadside inns was an unpleasant extra. The casual cruelty they showed him was nothing compared to the stories they laughed over, making his stomach churn in horrified disgust.
He could listen no longer.
Those were his people they found pleasure in abusing; people with lives and families of their own. How dared they!
A chill blade pressing against his neck startled him alert. He froze as a voice whispered, “Don’t move, don’t shout and you won’t get hurt.”
Stealthy figures moved through the rain, weapons in hands as they surrounded the inn. Rebels, he realised – the very people the troop hunted.
“I’ll raise no alarm.” Steall relaxed as the knife lifted away. “I wish you every success.”
Their abuse would end tonight.
Word Count: 175
As you may know, I generally like to give my characters names with meanings that fit them. For a ‘real world’ story I’ll usually look through various baby name sites but when it’s a fantasy story I’ll often use Old English words. For today’s character I wanted to give him a name connected in some way to horses. When browsing the results in the Old English Translator I actually managed to find a word that worked on several levels, adding extra layers of meaning that perfectly fitted with the story I wanted to tell. I thought I’d share these meanings with you:
|steall Strong Masculine Noun
1. a standing position 2. the way matters stand position of affairs state condition standing se steall cirican the state of the church 3. position place standing 4. place stead brihtweald gehalgode tobian on his steall brightwald hallowed tobias in his stead 5. a place for cattle a stall stall (for cattle) stable 6. a place for catching fish fishing ground