20. FortitudeEver bleeds a heartThat wishes no twist or scarsSuch care beyond pain.
Sinking Sickness: Chapter 11.Into the Sunlight.“Wake up, Link. The hunting party has just returned.”Nelia’s voice was cold in his ears and, grunting awake from an exhausted sleep, Link debated laying there and ignoring the summons. He would at least open his eyes though he continued to lay there on his side, half huddled in a ball for warmth and a glare set towards the stone wall instead of facing the woman behind him. This place was puny and damp; the air stale and the walls lined with evidence that he wasn’t the first person to be held prisoner here. He slept alone and was held in confinement here nearly all hours except for brief periods of time when he was let out to use the restroom and to be shown as an example during meals.On top of that it had been nearly a week since his fight with Darus but his body still hurt badly and even though he was healing faster than normal his wounds were still problematic. His strength was taking its time to return; especially since he refused to
Sinking Sickness: Chapter 10.The Hunt.The night was progressing slowly; far too slowly for Link’s taste. The sun had gone down well over two hours ago and they had to wait until well after moonrise until they set out on the hunt. That didn’t mean he had to stay put in one place so, after some time prowling the caves and getting better acquainted with those he shared it with, he decided he needed a walk outside to settle his nerves.The trip down the rocks was a bit trickier than the climb up but he’d pull it off without incident and he’d soon emerge from behind the falls to the forest beyond. He’d draw a deep breath and was instantly soothed by the familiar air of pines, flowers, and rich earthy aromas that rode the warm night wind. This breeze could be a good thing for them; it gave them the opportunity to stalk their prey from downwind so that they couldn’t be detected easily. If they truly were to take on a predator it would be wise to use suck tactics. Link still wasn
Sinking Sickness: Chapter 9.Waterfalls and daydreams.The sound of gushing water was deafening and the torrent of frothy liquid streamed down the cliff face at a humbling rate. The churning white-water held Link’s gaze as if in a trance, his reddened stare lost to the movement of the falls almost entirely. Around him the rest of the group was slowing down, stretching their lean bodies and yawning as they relaxed and prepared for the coming dawn. For the normal world it would mean rising and going along with daily business but, surely, for them it would mean time for sleep and rest. As Link would hang back a bit, Veshte would join him and quietly settled down near him with a great yawn. Link would glance to the other man, but movement out of the corner of his eye would have him looking back to the falls as little moving figures starting to emerge at the base from behind the frothy curtain.Darus was already nearly there and, like wolves, the Infected that had just emerged from behind the falls would gree
Sinking Sickness: Chapter 8.New Alliance.It didn’t take Link long to realize just how primitive these fellow infected were. Some of the more animalistic types donned no clothing though still had a humanoid build. As for those that did still look more human they did have sense enough to wear some sort of covering which, being so human himself, he was happy for. Many of the more beastly folk were either covered in rich off-white fur or patches of it that did well enough at hiding the most private of regions on a male or female. However in females when it came to the chest area it was quite reversed. Many women still had the human structure of breasts and those that had so decided to discard all their clothing were left blatantly exposed. This was something new, surely, and such a raw display of a woman had Link feeling a bit awkward to say the least. It was one thing to shift forms and run around in fur; it was another thing entirely to have half naked women walking so calmly along beside him.They all m
Sinking Sickness: Chapter 7.Exile.After a few delectable nights of feasting on the goat’s remains it was inevitable that the food source was bound to run out. Having picked it clean of the good stuff, Link figured he’d have to find some other alternate source of food and fast. He’d already tried to eat berries and other edible plant life but the texture alone was nearly enough to cause him to gag in response let alone the appalling flavor. He knew he could choke down as much as he needed to in order to keep the hunger pains a bay but he knew deep down that he’d need meat again. Very soon.By now he had a personal schedule that he had developed and was quite accustomed to. Sleep all day; search around and in Ordon at night for any clues that may guide him along towards a cure. At first, he felt hopeful that traces of that feline beast or possible kin could be found. Try as he might, however, it was impossible to locate the dead animal much less a trail it may have left behind befor
Sinking Sickness: Chapter 6.New Predator.Drip…Drip...Drip…The steady sound of water falling was calming to Link’s clouded mind and at first it made him almost drift back off into blissful slumber. He felt tired, very tired, and his head hurt. Yes staying asleep sounded very nice indeed. However just as Link was about to drift back into his dreams a sudden image would push into his thoughts and startle him back to awareness. Ilia’s terrified face and the dim echo of her scream in his memory had him jolting upright; his heart racing as an inhuman growl of discomfort left him. The sound was familiar and, at the same time, unwelcomed. He wasn’t a wolf anymore as he had been during his prior travels and he shouldn’t be able to make that noise right now.Grunting, he’d ease the rest of the way to his feet, turning towards where the water beat out its hypnotic rhythm. There were various small pools of clear water, some every now and again disrupted by a sing