Inspired by the Daily Prompt: What’s the most significant secret you’ve ever kept? Did the truth ever come out?, a segment from “Escorting in Twilight.”
Voba watched the older trio from the corner of the bar. It was a relief to have the ‘boy’ home after all this time. While he shared the same concerns as the others about the increasing limp Atkinson showed. Despite Wellone or Jalem’s remedies, the walk of the child returned, bringing an uncomfortable silence from the once lively dancer and singer.
The younglings to his left had no idea about the one they sought; knew as little as the ones chaperoning them. Voba considered that part of Quinton’s blessed curse – worse than the sightless leading the soundless. If Desmon, Jalem, Wellone, or Quinton forbid – Atkinson, found Sorpha, it would mean Voba’s death if the truth were learned, only because Quinton the Great would probably sacrifice Atkinson’s life to Sorpha.
The innkeeper smiled as he watched the banter between the friends, seeing younger faces from another time, before the terrors began, and wondered f he stood a chance of forgiveness for what really happened that night of the raids. It was a three-fold horror that he never spoke of, cursing the failed attempts of keeping everyone safe.
The scar Atkinson had was Voba’s doing, the jagged knife plunging into the lower back of the boy as Voba turned to conceal him from the bandits. However, the pain caused by a ‘misguided blow’ was the better choice, a small pain to distract the child from the truth of what Voba saw that cold evening in the moons’ absence, with the many orange flames lapping at the spilt blood by Sorpha’s hand, a telltale twitch of the eye.
Voba swore to Quinton, the Guardian of all, that he would never tell the man before him, the returning son orphaned so long ago how his sister had vanished or who had plunged the knife into their parents’ hearts. What Voba had shared with the rest of the elders and fighters was the truth, in a fractioned fashion, was that Michael Sorpha was evil increasing, that the massacres would worsen.