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
Vival wanted to keep low and quiet as they approached the shore. He wasn’t sure whether the Overreacher had any sentinels by the banks. But there was no shutting up the sword now. Tom and Nyla were deep in a conversation about all sorts of silly, irrelevant things and were making so much noise that even the wildlife in the area stayed completely clear.
“Where’s the boat?” Nyla asked.
“I left it anchored out at sea,” Vival tried to explain. “I couldn’t bring it in too close, you see, or I would have alerted the Goon…”
“That’s fine,” Nyla interrupted. “But how am I going to get to it?”
“I’m going to swim out and bring it to you, princess!” Vival replied, setting the sword on the ground.
Nyla eyed him mistrustfully. “How are you going to get it up here?”
“I’m not going to get it up here!” Vival exclaimed. “I’m going to get you down there!” And without explaining anything else, Vival dropped off the edge of the cliff, feeling a little guilty about how satisfying it was leaving Nyla’s startled gasp behind him.
She peeked over the edge and saw him nimbly climbing down the side of the cliff. He was workmanlike about his descent, neither cautious nor in too much of a hurry. Once he looked back up at her and waved. She didn’t wave back.
The sharks were still out there, Vival remembered, reaching the shore. He splashed into the depths as quietly as he could, keeping his eyes open for any dark moving shapes while he was under. When he finally surfaced he took a brief glance back up the cliff at Nyla who was watching him intently, clutching the sword to her chest.
Turning as silently as he could, Vival began to swim out to his boat, anchored in the shallows just past the deep crevasse that surrounded the island. Those shallows prevented any large craft from getting too close to the island, and the depths close to shore made beach-attacks similarly impossible. A nice defense, Vival marveled. Only a swimmer stood any chance.
He reached his small boat without incident. The Friend was a small sloop with a retractable sail meant to hold three passengers at most. It had served Vival well on his journey to Veer Isle and could be relied upon to get Nyla safely to civilization. It was also small enough that, now that he knew there were no archers waiting to rain arrows down, he could bring it over the shallows and right up to the cliff where his charge was waiting.
As he sailed the boat close to shore, he saw Nyla sitting on the bank, her feet dangling over the considerable drop. She was pretty brave, he thought, all things considered. She had done very well helping him defeat the Overreacher. And except for occasional whining she had been willing to do anything she needed to do to go with him.
Vival expertly maneuvered in the narrow channel until he was right under her. He held his boat away from the jagged walls with his calloused right hand, balancing upon the bow as he looked up.
“How am I going to get down there?” she called, her voice nearly lost in the sound of the waves.
“Just wait!” he called. After a minute’s searching, Vival found a place where he could tie the boat onto one of the rocks. Then, with a little leap, he disembarked and began scaling the walls up to her.
“Wow,” she said, when he arrived at the top. “You’re strong.”
“Now what I’m going to do is lower you down with this rope…”
“Lower you down to the boat with this rope…”
“Down there? Hanging on a rope?”
Vival looked at her. “You could climb down.”
Nyla considered it. Vival couldn’t help but admire her spirit as she surveyed the cliff below. “Looks pretty sharp,” she said.
“It is,” Vival said, holding up his hands and showing her the little cuts that covered it.
“Mmmm,” Nyla said, miserably. “I guess I better trust you, then.”
Vival took the sword from her. It was quiet now, probably satisfied from its extended conversation with its new friend. Vival made a loop in his rope, which he dropped around Nyla’s head and shoulders.
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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