The Diary of A Necromancer – Chapter 2
And now for something a little different. This is part of a story that I’m in the process of writing. It all starts off with the boy and his family on route to their new home. Something happens on the road, an accident of some kind. The boy is separated from his parents and runs after the family pet who takes off in the incident. The pet gets itself stuck in a precarious place, and while the boy tries to rescue it he fails, becomes seriously injured, and needs rescuing himself. The necromancer comes along and saves him from the brink of death or resurrects him. In return The Necromancer demands the boy’s soul/servitude. The boy accepts the pact on the condition that he becomes the man’s assistant and apprentice. The setting and also the characters’ backgrounds is influenced by the Normandy region of France during the Middle Ages from around 900-1200 BC. And describes some history of the culture and of medieval witchcraft, which will be incorporate at a later date. Enjoy!
Chapter 2 – The Pact
The sweet faint smell of wet earth and decay stirred his mind from his slumber. As he opened his eyes a shadowy figure stood over him.
“Ah. Awake now? Good.” said the figure in a smooth yet gravelly voice.
The boy’s body felt stiff and rigid as if he had been laying on that patch of grass for sometime. Remembering his pet the boy asked, “My pet, is it alright? I was trying to save it…” the boy’s words trailed off abit as he recalled what had happened in his attempt to rescue his pet and the tragic events that had unfolded.
“The creature is fine. See here?” The boy followed the direction that the figure gestured towards. The animal called out as it lept into the boy’s arms and they embraced.
Having found some semblance of comfort, it was then that the boy began to take in his surroundings and the stranger that was before him. Draped in fine dark velvet robes and furs, the man, lean and tall with an air of superiority, peered down at the boy. His skin was pale and had a smoothness that a sickly person exhibits. His face was partially covered in a dark thin beard whose roots were beginning to grey, matching the shoulder length hair framing it.
As the boy’s gaze settled on the man’s face, he was captivated by his piercing green eyes. The man noticed this and cast a wicked grin. Startled, the boy began to speak, “M-My parents. Where are they? I need to find them. I need to know if they’re safe.” the boy continued as he recalled the events that took place, panic rising in his voice. “Something happened on the road. We need to find them!”
The man, still grinning replied with a chuckle, “We? Perhaps. But first we must settle the matter of your resurrection.”
The boy’s panic waned as his confusion grew at the man’s words. “My– What?” the boy asked.
“The life which I so graciously returned to you.” the man replied. “Are you not grateful?”
A bit embarrassed and ashamed at this realization the boy quickly replied, “I am! I’m grateful! I beg your pardon good sir, please, I’m very grateful for what you’ve done. For saving me. And my pet!.”
“Indeed.” the man’s smiled turned into a concerned scowl. “But my dear boy, all good deeds come at a cost. You are in my debt, do you agree?.”
“Oh yes… Sir, I am in your debt! I’m very grateful for what you’ve done. I owe you my life. If you could help me, please—” The boy’s words were cut short as the man raised his hand to silence him.
“I will help, once I get what I am owed.” the man said with a patient smile as he gazed down at the boy.
Slightly frustrated the boy replied, “Please sir! I have nothing to pay you with, but my parents might when we find them! They’ll be so grateful that you saved me!”
“I do not seek coin.” the man said in a tone of disgust. “Coin is not what I’m owed.” the man peered down at the boy, their eyes communicating what their words could not. The boy’s eyes began to fill with tears. “You said it yourself.”
Realizing the price, the boy’s tears vanished. “…I owe you my life…” said the boy hesitantly in a quiet voice. The boy was shocked but not entirely surprised. His parents would occasionally discuss his future, whether he should be pledged in servitude to a wealthy lord or take up an apprenticeship as a craftsman, as this was to be his best chance of a prosperous life. “You want my service? Am I to be you apprentice?”
“Ha ha! Indeed!” the man laughed. “My assistant, my apprentice, which ever I may need.” the man smiled intently at the boy and retrieved from his robes a scroll of parchment. “With this parchment our pact will be sealed.” the man unrolled the scroll and handed it along with a quill to the boy.
“Forgive me, sir, but I don’t know how to read or write.” the boy said nervously.
“No matter. I can teach you, as part of your apprenticeship.” He said with a smile. “Do you know how to write your name?”
Excited at the prospect of learning to read and write, the boy nodded. “My father taught me.”
“Good, good.” the man said calmly. “By abiding by the terms within this contract and with your signature, of course, your debt to me shall be fulfilled.”
As the boy gazed upon the parchment, a paragraph appeared. Amazed, the boy looked up at the man. *Gasps!* “Is this magick? Are you a Sorcerer!?!” the boy was astonished, excited, and a bit concerned.
“I am.” said the man smugly. “A powerful sorcerer with magickal knowledge and abilities you could hardly dream of.”
“And you’ll teach me to use magick?” the boy asked in wonder.
“Yes. I will teach you the knowledge you’ll need to serve as my apprentice” the man replied. “Sign”
The boy admired the magickal lettering of the parchment before asking, “But… what does it say?”
“Ah yes. I shall recite it for you then” the man said in a slightly bothered tone as he snatched up the parchment from the boy and cleared his throat. *Ahem*. The contract read:
“The boy shall serve in assistance to the man as his apprentice til the boy’s natural death as compensation for the boy’s salvation and/or resurrection. In addition, the man will help the boy find his parents as well as provide the boy the knowledge that will allow him to serve the man most effectively and efficiently as his apprentice. By adhering to these terms, along with the signature of the debtor (the boy) the pact is sealed, and the debt payed. The pact can only be broken or voided at the man’s will of release or the man’s natural demise.”
The man handed the parchment back to the boy. “Sign”
The boy raised the quill but realized he had no ink. “I don’t have ink. Do you have some?”
“Oh dear, It seems I do not” the man replied. “I suppose you’ll have to make due with what you have”. The man gestured to the gash on the boy’s head.
The boy raise his hand towards his forehead. Upon touching it slight waves of pain rippled through his head and felt the warm sticky presence of his own blood. He examined the red liquid on his fingers, fear brewing in his gut. He looked up at the man who was watching him hungrily. The boy took the quill, scooped up the droplets of blood from his finger tips and signed his name at the bottom of the parchment the man held out for him.
“Wonderful!” exclaimed the man. He quickly stored the scroll back to the robes from whence it came. “Onward then”
The man turn his back on the boy, but before the man could take a step the boy interjected, “My parents!?”, in a worried tone.
The man scowled to himself. “Yes let us go to your parents then.” he said, his scowl turning into a smile as he faced the boy. “Come, here”. The boy stepped closer to the man. The man knelt down and put his hands on the boy’s shoulders. The boy jumped and shuddered, surprised at the man’s cold touch. “Now think of your mother and father, where you last saw them. Keep that image in your mind”. As the man spoke, the boy could smell his stale breath, a scent of dank earth and something that was like rotted meat. The boy withdrew slightly from the stench and nodded. The man straighten himself and touched a hand to the boys head. “Close your eyes and be still” said the man softly.