I’m taking a short break to cogitate on the next chapter of Shane. Spent a couple of days working on a short story. It’s based on the Aesop fable, “The Lion and the Mouse.” Here’s a taste:
“Her mother wanted to kill her at birth. Her father refused. He said he saw a spark of something worth keeping in her eyes. Whatever he had seen, it hadn’t developed into anything Shanthians found useful. Erris often felt it would have been better to have died at birth. There was never a time that she remembered being happy. Most of her life had been spent in fear and shame. Her sisters and brothers never allowed a fault to slip the notice of their parents. In the trials for her age group, she had failed in every proficiency test. She was incompetent, pathetic, but not useless. There was one use they found for her and any like her. They put her in service to the elite prisoners. It was her duty to care for them making sure they were fit and healthy for their trial and subsequent execution. The bigger and stronger a prisoner was at his execution the greater the glory redounded to the Shanthian responsible for his capture.”
Excerpt from “The Lion and the Mouse” by Cailin Briste.