The cry of thunder pounded her ears like a mighty war drum.
With a pardonable humidity and the dark essence of overcast, the first tears of a newborn storm started to fall as the somber facade of the midday sky allowed its eyes to overflow.
“What an inconvenient time for the goddess of nature to shower the world in a vicious display of nourishment”, the woman stated to no one in particular, her head already scrambled by the issue at hand.
Before the trouble could even start, the situation already exceeded her preconceived notions.
Indeed, this was to be a small matter that could be quickly handled and put to rest , but fate had escalated the problem into something a bit more precarious.
As the dew of life picked up its pace and became a furious torrent, she lifted her arming sword and shield into a defensive stance; if she rushed or advanced too quickly,
she would see her life extinguished faster than the blazing flame that once tortured the field of wheat to her side.
She knew what was ahead of her as it hid behind the shower and white smoke from the burnt wood, which plagued her sensitive nostrils with the scent of recent victims.
Another facet of knowledge she was aware of, but tried to ignore, was how starkly unprepared she was for an encounter of this magnitude.
When the knights received a pigeon with a badly scrawled note, it was not clear that the people in this hamlet were far from lucky; death would not have come swiftly for these poor souls.
Experience taught her that such poorly written request were trivial and a part of her order's normal routine just like any other dispute the young dame was ordered to settle; bad handwriting
was typical for commoners who had no business in literacy, be it hastily done or no.
Yet as she stood her ground, the soles of her armored feet now indented in the mud that pooled around her, she felt her gut writhe in fear as it jostled her insides.
“Perhaps it's just the atmosphere,” she tried to reassure herself.
When the thick air unexpectedly cooled, a shaky breath was all that escaped the slits of the visor on her bascinet, which caused an unsteady puff of condensation to protrude her countenance.
Simultaneously, a cold sweat had worked up enough energy to pierce the rough skin above her brow and deliver a gentle sting to her eye.
She wanted to move, but paralysis had overcome her better judgement. All she needed was an opportunity to present itself and give her the push forward she desperately needed.
And that was when it happened.