The Girl With The Bow
Book One in the Nyla Series
(C) 2013, 2016 Adam Cole
Published by Nuncici Press, an imprint of Adam Cole Works LLC
Irritated, his eyes half closing, Vival turned to the girl. She was sitting with her back to him. “What are you doing?” Sullen, Nyla did not answer. “Oh, look. If you’re that mad about the sword…” But Nyla still said nothing. A little perplexed, Vival knelt down beside her, ignoring the pain in his knees. “How did you end up under this mountain?”
The girl turned her head a little towards him. “Do we have to talk about me?”
“Well, uh…” Vival said, scratching his head. “Yes. If you want me to take you home.”
“Don’t have a home,” Nyla replied, looking away again. She was gazing out over the landscape towards the distant ocean beyond.
“Well…” said Vival, taken aback. Perhaps her kingdom had been conquered or overrun. Perhaps she had been on a ship when her father had made an assault on the island and had been captured or killed by the Goon. Whatever the actual story, she did not seem willing to tell just now. Finally, he replied, “Me neither…”
That got Nyla’s attention. She turned to face him. “Really?” she asked.
“Well, I grew up in a certain place,” he clarified, “And it was as much my home as it could be, but it wasn’t really my home.”
“What do you mean?” Nyla put her elbows on her knees and her chin on her palm, gazing up at Vival with her deep black eyes.
“I was raised among the Fittest,” Vival said. “They’re an organization of knights under the service of Dom, King of the Land of Lot. I lived at his castle for fifteen years, learning whatever I could from the Knights until I finally became one.”
“How did you get there?”
“My parents left me there, I think,” Vival answered. Suddenly he realized they were talking about him. “What about you?” he countered, maybe a little too loudly. “Where are you from?”
“I told you I don’t know!” Nyla exclaimed angrily, turning away again.
“You didn’t tell me that,” Vival retorted. “You just said you don’t have a home.”
“Well, I don’t!”
“Is it because you don’t want to have a home?” Vival ventured quietly.
“Look, I don’t want to talk about me,” Nyla snapped. “Now, why don’t you go on and get back where you came from?”
“I can’t leave you here!” Vival said.
“Yes, you can! I’ll be fine!”
“Until you get hungry.”
“I’ll figure something out,” Nyla muttered.
“Like what?” Vival demanded. “You’re out here on top of a mountain with no way back to the place you just left.”
“So?” yelled Nyla.
Vival had no answer for that. “You’re coming with me,” he answered.
“Uh uh, I ain’t coming with you!” replied Nyla, shaking her head vigorously.
“Yes you are.”
“No I’m not. I don’t know you, I don’t know nothing about you…not even sure I like you.”
“That’s irrelevant,” Vival said. “I can’t leave you here by yourself.”
“Where you gonna take me?” Nyla demanded, turning around again.
“Well…” Vival began. “The Sand Witch said I had to bring you back to her. I think she knows where you belong. Do you?
Nyla did not reply. She looked down at the ground, hiding her eyes from Vival.
“Let’s go,” Vival said, getting up. He started walking down the hint of trail that led along the side of the mountain, away from the precipice. Noticing that Nyla remained sitting down, he repeated himself. “I said let’s go!”
As he turned away again, he did not see Nyla wiping her eyes with her hand as she rose up to follow him. The tears dripped off the side of her hand and were not seen again.
More about The Girl With The Bow
When Vival, Knight of the Fittest, risked his life to rescue the princess from Veer Isle, he never thought he’d be the one who needed to be rescued. And to make matters worse, the girl he was helping didn’t want to leave! The first book in the Nyla series introduces Vival, Knight of the Fittest, Tom the Incredibly Helpful Sword, two mysterious island dwellers named Cher and Sherluck, and Nyla, the mysterious girl with the bow.
Adam Cole is an author and music educator in Atlanta, GA. He has written numerous books and stories for children, as well as a number of adult and non-fiction titles including The Speed of Darkness and Seven Ways the World Can End.
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