Most of my “original fiction” tells stories of a very specific culture, non-human but humanoid, as seen over a thousand+ year course of history. Genre-wise, it’s hard fantasy meets soft SF, for lack of a better definition. Style-wise, I’m afraid I won’t ever be able to fully write in a truly “commercial”, palatable, relatable voice without hating myself.
The existence of someone like J M McDermott sort of gives me hope, and yet. That dude’s a native speaker, at least.
Surely Joseph Conrad wasn’t, but I’m not sure I’m _that_ good.
Either way, since I decided that illustrating my “original” stuff would limit the reader way too much, I’ll be posting bits and pieces from now on.
This is a vignette written almost five years ago.
They came from the northeast, like they always do. Tall, on horseback, an entourage of what looked like females, but you can never be sure with the Ingäriisse. On most occasions, they gallop past, whipping dust from under the horses’ braided, chained, swinging tails.
This time, they stopped.
Stopped just before entering the village lot, three dismounted, the rest silently watching, wary gloved hands patting the horses’ filigree-wire adorned manes.
‘We’ve come for the child,’ was all that was said.
The tallest one was speaking: voice of a nearing storm; sea-green eyes and skin like polished stone under the first rays of dawn; feathers of hair around pointed ears, against shoulders, tousled, pinned up – anthracite, ruby, platinum, and anthracite again; leather and deerskin, tooled, pierced, laced over and over; silver and steel – niello, jutting, hugging, hanging, wrapping, overlaying in chainmesh and maille; and they all are the tallest one, thrice and again, painted birds, veiling smiles in earnest, look away, look away…
They’re being led to the child. A newborn, a scorn of our prayers. Sea-green eyes and sunset cheeks, but what’s that if not what we asked for…
Yet the ears are pointed, and the flowers on the window-ledge bow to the child at night, and the mother does not want to see the curse that befell her anymore.
And the smiles burst out, and the child is cradled in the arms of the tallest one, and no words are spoken.
When the dust settles down again, the silence makes way.
‘They harvested the fruit they’d planted.‘