This short story was written from a word(s) prompt for a writing group. The bolded words were the word prompts for the assignment. This was a timed writing and no corrections have been made.
Once upon a time in a land far, far away there was a young boy named Tritan. He was a precocious young lad with a mischievous twinkle in his green eyes. His family was poor beyond measure in things, but rich in love. Tritan was the youngest of seven children. His three older sisters spoiled him rotten. While his four older brothers made him bear the brunt of all their pranks.
Tritan’s only job was to look after three sheep ewes who were heavy with child. He loved his job because it granted him a modicum of peace. Living in such a large family made him the victim of unwanted chaos and noise on a regular basis. Tritan cherished his moments of quiet in the rolling fields with his ewes.
Taking a quick peek over at the grazing sheep, he allowed his eyelids to close. He crossed his arms under his head forming a pillow of sorts. Exhaling a long sigh, he stretched into a more comfortable position. This was the life. Only the chirping of the birds and the wind’s soft whistle through the blades of grass. Not a single human voice to mar the perfection.
A terrified bleating jerked him into an upright position. He watched in horror as one of his ewes barely escaped the slathering jaws of a wolf. Tristan grabbed his staff running towards the melee. His only thought was to save his sheep.
Out of nowhere, a monstrous lion with a gloriously full mane leapt into the midst of the chase. The lion ran between the frightened sheep and the wolf. The golden savior opened its mouth revealing its sharp teeth in a horrible snarl.
Tristan waited for the ferocious roar to emanate from the lion’s mouth. Silence. He watched as the wolf skidded to a halt. The wolf wore a confused expression on its face as it too waited for the roar. Nothing.
While no roar issued forth, the size of the lion was enough of a deterrent for the wolf. It hightailed it out of there with its tail between its legs. Tristan stood utterly still as the lion’s intelligent brown eyes found his own green ones. The lion’s head dipped briefly as if bowing. In the time it took Tristan to blink, the lion disappeared from view. He searched the horizon for a sign of the lion. The only scene that greeted him was the gentle swaying yellow flowers dancing with the wind.
A tentative bleating woke Tristan out of his trance. He rushed over to his ewes to reassure them of their safety. The three surrounded him butting their heads against his legs demanding attention. He obliged with scratches behind the ears of each ewe.
Tristan crouched down by the oversized paw print just a few feet from the ewes. The footprint proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that he had not been dreaming. A magnificent lion had been standing in that exact place just mere moments ago.
He had heard stories of the lion protectors all his life. The story was told that the lion beasts had been found on an excursion by the early settlers. The settlers had been looking for a planet to call home. On their journey, they had come upon the City of Stars. The city was formed completely from star dust. It glittered and shone with the lights of millions of stars. The only other lifeforms that were found in the city were a pride of lions. These lions were known as the protectors of the city.
The settlers found an ancient book that had been nearly destroyed by a fire. The book told of the battle of long ago between two races. One race was serpentine in nature. An evil race who poisoned planets and people. The other race was the lions. They brought protection and healing to planets and people. Their weapon was their magnificent roar. The noise from the lion’s roar broke the curse of the serpentine’s poison. The lion’s roar was the envy of the serpentine race. Their one desire was to have the roar from themselves.
Unfortunately, important parts of the book were burned beyond recognition making it impossible to decipher the entire story. From what the early settlers could discern, the serpentine race created a machine that stole the lion roar. The machine didn’t simply steal one lion’s roar, but the entire race’s roar. The serpents took the machine to an impenetrable prison on one of the planets in the local galaxy. The location of the planet was unknown to the lion race.
The lion protectors left the City of Stars in search of the machine that had stolen their roar. They had been gone from Tritan’s planet for over a millennium. Stories of the magnificent creatures had been passed down from generation to generation. A group of unbelievers, the Heretics, had been spreading lies that the lion protectors were simply fairy tales that the early settlers made up to make people feel safe on a new planet. While Believers, had faith that the lion protectors would one day return to their dying planet to heal it with the sound of their roars.
Tritan had always been a believer in the lion protectors. His brothers teased him for his belief that the lion protectors would come back to save their planet. They were going to have to eat their words now!
Granted no one had ever laid eyes on a lion protector. Well, no one…until now…that is.
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Until next time blessings and healing