X – The Doctor

The doctor woke up to the sound of growling. The horses were startled and began kicking in their stalls. He sat up wondering if the wind was scaring them. His kerosene lamp was barely alive and as he laid back down he heard it again. He was afraid to move and wondered where the sound was coming from. Was it inside? Was it outside? He couldn’t tell, but he felt the snarl of something breathing close by. He cautiously looked around and when he turned to see something between the slits of the wooden boards, he caught the glint of an angry animal staring back at him. Apprehended, he lunged for his satchel and pulled out his amulet. Something was out there, something angry and menacing was trying to get inside.

Stay near the light, was all he could think of. What light? The light from the kerosene lamp wasn’t enough and the lanterns on the outside had been extinguished by the creatures. There was something about the light and he needed more of it.

“Plus lucis,” he said in Latin and a small glow appeared in his amulet. With one swift of the hand he releases a luminous spark on each corner of the barn, bringing more light to the place. He could hear the creatures scrambling away. Their growling growing distant, though he knew they where nearby. He waited to see of they returned, but they didn’t. Keeping the creatures away calmed the horses.

He wasn’t frightened at being alone, but when face with creatures like that, being alone wasn’t a good thing. What were those creatures? He didn’t get a good look at it and frankly he didn’t want to. He had only seen some fur, a large snout maybe claws, but he wasn’t sure. He tried to listen for them.

 

IX – The Doctor

The man’s sister had improved greatly. She was sitting up and talking. The fever was gone and though she felt better, the doctor advised her to stay in bed until she regain the strength to her legs. By the time she had gotten better it was too late for the doctor to return to the city. He had to stay the night. The man offered the doctor his barn which he agreed to. The doctor didn’t want to stay another day in Dacia, but he had no other choice. The doctor was standing on the porch watching the sun go down when he heard the sister calling out to her brother from her room. She sounded worried.

“You can’t let him sleep in the barn,” she said.

“He’ll be fine,” said the man.

“It wouldn’t be safe,” she tried to persuade him.

“I said, he’ll be fine,” the man repeated.

The man came down the stairs  with a blanket and a kerosene lamp.

“You’ll be needing this for the night,” the man handed the blanket to the doctor. With a lantern in hand he lead the doctor to the barn. “I wouldn’t recommend taking a stroll late at night,” the man said. “Stay inside and you’ll be safe… and whatever you do keep the lantern lit.”

“I’ve been told that,” said the doctor.

“I would heed the advice, doctor,” the man handed him the kerosene lamp and double latched the door.

The doctor could hear the man walking away.

“Great,” the doctor muttered. He wondered what the rumors of Dacia were.Whatever they were it scared people away and those that staid were strange in their ways. He searched for a pile of hay, sprawled the blanket and laid down. The blanket was soft, though the hay poking through it made it uncomfortable to relax. The doctors companions for the night were two Clydesdale horses who seemed uneasy with his presence or so he thought.

The night had fallen rapidly and the wind was rattling the barn, making the horses become agitated. He had prompt the lantern next to him and hoped it didn’t start a fire. As he was staring into the ceiling he realized that he didn’t know the man’s name. He wondered if he had even introduced himself. He couldn’t recall. He sighed and closed his eyes. He needed to get some sleep, tomorrow he had a long day of traveling.