Chapter 17: The Land Without Footprints: Shadows Amongst Shadows

Posted: September 7, 2013 in Novel: The Land Without Footprints
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17  – Jordan

“And  what  can  we  do  about  any  of  this?  We’re  only  children.” Cassandra touched the bruise on her face. If Jordan knew by whom she received it, he would’ve already killed the person.

“You’re children in body but not in mind,” Bann said, back against the door. Paranoia dressed him more than clothes. In just a few days he’d developed a fear of ears. “You have more knowledge today than most adults have on their deathbeds.”

Damyn tied his tie. “I’ll be the handsomest commander in all of history.” He’d be the stupidest commander in all of history too, Jordan knew.

“What do you know about commanding an army, bastard?”

“I know people will have to do terrible things because of the power of my words.”

Slowly slow, Jordan shook his head. “Your words are no more powerful than anyone else’s.”

“This isn’t the time to bicker amongst ourselves.” Bann opened the door, closed it after he thought it safe. “We are more than brother and daughter and father. We are a family.”

They all looked at their father as if he were a ghost. Family truly was an archaic word. It had been removed from the dictionary thousands of years ago. Only intellectuals even knew what the word meant. Besides laws and twins, it was the one other taboo. Together they formed a trinity of taboo. Nobody talked about such things out in the open.

“We are a family,” Bann said again. “That means we don’t fight each other. And we don’t fuck each other.”

Jordan threw both his hands skyward. “I haven’t fucked anyone in this room.”

“Do you want me to change that, Brother?” Cassandra put her hands on her hips. Truly, they were hips he wouldn’t mind resting between.

Jordan pointed at her, said: “Fuck you.”

She smiled, fluttered a laugh. “That is the offer.”

Again, Bann checked the hall. “Shut up—all of you. We are with the

Mystic but soon we will be without him, understand?”

“Yeah.” Damyn raised his hand. “What if I still adore the Mystic?” Bann crossed the room, grabbed his half-son by the collar. “Then you are a bastard. And bastards don’t have a high place in society. They never have and never will.”

“Yeah.” Damyn grinned. “Perhaps I’ll join your little gang then.” Bann let the bastard go. “We need to create an act of separation from the Mystic. An offense of familial proportions that allows for us to do nothing but side with ourselves. Cassandra will be our pawn, our mock pawn, anyway. ”

“She doesn’t look much like a chess piece.” Damyn grinned. He was the only one that did.

Jordan crossed his arms. “How will she be a mock pawn?”

“By helping break a long-standing promise,” Bann said, cracking his fingers.

“What promise?” Damyn combed a hand through his hair.

Together, their father clapped his hands. “We’ll do everything the Mystic expects us to. It is always best to be the villain that not even the hero would like to defeat,” Bann added, and he went out the door before explaining further.


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