The Yoders’ Home
Forest West of Selma
Sixth Horse Port House
Scabus riding alongside Ransis
heavyset clerk sat in the porch shade cooling himself with a fan.
Beads of perspiration welled up on his face forcing him to
periodically dab them away with an embroidered cloth.
He disliked the hot summer months on the desert plains immensely,
but at least here he served a position, and he would tell you that it
was a vital position, in the Salmonil army.
A physique such as his was rare in that part of Epi and so were
the military jobs he could fill, such as the office of Post Clerk.
His heft gave him one cultural advantage, though.
He excelled at a favorite past time among the Salmonil,
wrestling. As of the night before, he was still undefeated at the
station. His full cheeks
pressed together his already naturally slanted eyes so that some doubted
he could see through them. Indeed
when he laughed hard, he could not.
did not laugh now. It would
make him warmer.
day drew on. High noon
burned hot and dry without the regular summer rains that filled the
flood plain. He sat on the
front porch of the Sixth Horse Port House on the southern camersil silk
trade route. It cut through the open plain, barren except for the few
large buildings of the station: stables, a corral, a barn for 200
horses, and a large lodge with furnishings fit for a king.
As one of his first orders in the high command, General Araknik
had these horse port houses
constructed at regular intervals along well-established trade routes. It
was a good choice and Araknik was beginning to be recognized among
Council of Tribes as the best general they ever had.
annoying fly buzzed at his ears again.
The clerk swatted at it with his fan and it suddenly stopped
buzzing. He looked around
his chair and strained his ears to hear it, thinking he heard a buzz.
That sounds more like a
jingle ... the jingle of the messenger bells.