Here is Part 2 of a new idea I have had based off the above picture. Art by Mateusz Ozminski I discover while looking for art for a writing prompt. I felt this image was beautiful and it created an idea I could not get out of my head. I will be posting pieces of this a little at a time for the next while.
Enjoy Part 2 of Titan’s Call
Esme smiled back at him, her brown eyes gleaming as her smile made her squint. Nikon pushed a lock of her crazy brown hair out of her face and pointed to the city beyond the platform. He pointed all the way up to the central castle where the King of the island and his family lived.
“One day I will take you there, we will be welcome among the court and be treated like royalty from another island.” He took Esme by the shoulders and met her gaze with his. “One day, I promise.”
“Well first we have to find somewhere to sleep for the night.” Esme said, she pulled Nikon from the platform and with a crooked grin reached into the pocket of her robe and pulled out three full coin purses. “What did you get?” She asked, he returned the grin and pulled five purses from his own robes.
“Well done,” He told her, “Come on we better find a corner to count all of these out.” He said, he glanced over his shoulder and led her down a busy street, they stuffed the purses back into their robes as they went. “You know we will need to find real work it we are ever going to get off the street,” He said after another moment as they wove between the adults going about their business.
Esme saw other children who were carrying baskets of bread, some were carrying bundles of clothing, and other were delivering packages and letters. Then there were some children who were just walking beside their parents happily, not needing to worry about working to survive.
Esme stopped short in the middle of the street, Nikon turned to look at her as her brown eyes filled with tears. “We couldn’t find work back on Jeraq, how will we find work here,” Esme sobbed, some of the adults walking by glanced at the pair of street waifs with pity in their eyes, while others held only disgust for the dirty children in their way.
“Es,” Nikon whispered, he cupped her hands in his, only a year older but since they were little he had had to be the grown up one, he had to be strong to help Esme. “we will be okay, I promise you,” he wiped a tear from her cheek. “and do I ever break my promises to you?” He asked.
Esme shook her head. “No, never,” she wiped the rest of the tears from her dirt stained cheeks and the pair continued down the road until Nikon found a shady spot between two shops. There were crates piled in the alley, the children climbed over the crates to hide in an opened one that smelt of old onions. Nikon let his backpack fall to the ground beside them and pulled out a wooden bowl from inside. He took out the other items that were currently filling the bowl and put them back in his bag. Then he upturned the purses he had snatched into the bowl, with a satisfying clink of fresh scales. Esme took out the purses she had got and turned them over into the bowl. As was their custom they separated the scales into their three categories. Gold, silver and copper. The small smooth arrow shaped scales were all different, every one fascinated Esme, and she had always wanted to see a scale mine to see how they were collected from the great islands.
“Where would you like to work?” Esme asked as they separated the scales into the piles.
“I was thinking of going to the docks and looking for work on some of the fishing ships there, they always need help.” Nikon said, he glanced up at her. “You are good with your hands, you would make a good seamstress if you could sit still long enough to learn.” He said, she just shook her head.
“I don’t want to sew,” Esme whined, picking up a partially green copper scale and examining it in the light that spilt through the slats of wood above their heads.
“Well you need to do something,” He scolded.
“Fine I’ll learn to sew then,” She growled at him, dropping the scale into the copper pile.
They finished counted and were happy with the amount. Five whole gold pieces, ten half gold, twenty seven silver scales and five half pieces, and one hundred and five copper pieces. This was even more money than they had collected to buy tickets on the beast to Sapis. It could buy them room and board somewhere for a season, giving the two more than enough time to find work.
“I doubt we will find some place to stay the night up here in this district,” Nikon said, as they packed away half the scales in his backpack and the other half in Esme’s. “We’ll need to go down to the lower city,” He said, putting his pack on and climbing from the crate.
“At least we will get to see the sea,” Esme said with a smile, Nikon just rolled his eyes as he helped her over a crate.