Callum walked into the store and saw his friend Jerall at the other side of the store talking to a customer. Callum walked behind the counter with the cash drawer and put his belongings in a drawer before locking it with a key. As he was locking the drawer, Jerall walked behind him and opened the cash drawer.
"That will be fourty-five coins, sir." said Jerall, holding his hand out for the coins. The man reached into his coin bag and retrieved the amount of coins and handed it to Jerall. He gave the man the change and then slid the items back over to the man.
"Have a good day, sir." said Callum. The man gave a slight nod to the both of them before picking up his items and leaving. Jerall let out a sigh and took a seat on a wooden chair.
"We just got a fresh stock of new items last night and the people who worked the night shift didn't unpack or anything, so I basically came in to the start of my shift seeing a bunch of boxes that I had to unload and everything. Then, that customer came in so I couldn't take a break because he needed my help." Jerall explained.
"I can see you are tired already." Callum pointed out.
"Yeah, plus, I didn't get much sleep last night. I had a bad dream about a goat chasing me around a cornfield and then it caught up to me and then that was it." said Jerall. Callum laughed.
"That doesn't sound scary, more like weird." says Callum.
"Yeah, I guess you're right." said Jerall. Jerall is like a brother to Callum. He and Callum met when they were both very young. They immediately bonded when they ran around Gares and around the small woods near the village.
"Are you off at four pm today?" asked Jerall. Callum nodded his head.
"Sweet, we can possible go hunting together in the forest behind your aunt and uncle's farm after we get out of here." Jerall suggested.
"I'm open to that, only thing is, I haven't hunted in awhile." said Callum. Callum has a longbow that he used whenever he went hunting. He hasn't had much time to go hunting however, 1, because of his job, 2, because of the forest not having much animals like deer and boar to hunt.
As the hours pass, Callum and Jerall continued helping customers and occasionally sit down and chit chat about random stuff to pass the time. With only two and a half hours of his shift left, Callum was anxious to go home and take a nap.
"So about my hunting question earlier, would you like to join me?" asked Jerall.
"Well, maybe after I go home and take a nap. Plus, we can't do anything super crazy because like I said before, I haven't gone hunting in a few months." Callum explained. Jerall nodded his head in understanding.
"Has it also been awhile since you picked up your bow?" asked Jerall.
"Yeah, I believe I haven't picked it up since our last hunting trip." Callum mentioned.
"We could just go to my father's shooting range and help you get the rustiness off." Jerall suggested.
"That sounds good to me." Callum replied.
"I just can't wait for the night shift people to come and take over for us here." said Jerall. Callum nodded is head in agreement. Callum suddenly noticed a strange armored man standing outside the store window. He was dressed up like a samurai, but he wasn't a samurai from Callum's territory. Callum lives on an island called Newern. Newern is divided into five territories. Each territory is led by a shogun, who leads a samurai military. An Emperor rules the whole island itself. The samurai from Callum's territory wear red, grey, and gold armor, but the armor the samurai Callum saw was wearing all black.
"Jerall, did you hear anything about our samurai's changing armor colors?" Callum asked, a hint of worry in his voice. Jerall shook his head and gave Callum an odd look.
"No, I don't think so. Why?" asked Jerall. Callum pointed towards the window, and Jerall spun around in his chair to look and he saw the samurai.
"Oh no, I recognize that armor. They are from another territory." Jerall explained, fear beginning to overwhelm him. Callum froze and stared at the samurai, who happened to turn around and look at Callum. The samurai suddenly clapped their hands, and the sound of a fire was heard. Callum saw an orange light start to reflect from the samurai's black armor.
"Callum, I think they just started a fire. We need to get out of here!" Shouted Jerall, scrambling to get to the door.
"Jerall, wait! We need a weapon in case these guys are going to attack!" Callum replied, searching the store for a weapon. He found some iron swords and quickly tossed one to Jerall.
"Take this dagger too just in case." said Callum, handing Jerall a steel blade handle first.
"Come on, let's get out of here and see what is going on." said Jerall before opening the door and stepping out. Callum followed and his eyes opened wide in shock. Several buildings were on fire and were beginning to crumble apart. Aunt Nya! Callum thought as he looked over at the burning tavern.
"I need to see if my aunt is in the tavern, come with me, Jerall!" ordered Callum. But before he could move anywhere, he heard the sound of a sword unsheathing. Callum turned around and saw the same samurai as before, along with three others standing behind him. One of the other samurai was holding a torch.
"You aren't going anywhere." said the main samurai, extending his katana out towards Callum. Callum held his iron sword out in front of him.
"I don't know who you are, and I don't care if you guys are more skilled in sword fighting than me, but I'm still going to attempt to take you guys down." said Callum, trying to sound brave. All four of the samurai's laughed.
"Really? You just want to try and take us down? You are going to get killed immediately, boy. Drop that pathetic sword and put your hands above your head, I'm going to give you a chance to surrender." said the main samurai.
"Not happening." said Callum, before charging forward and swinging his sword towards the first samurai. The samurai took a small step back and blocked the strike with easy before spinning around with a cut of his own. Callum saw it coming and ducked just in time. Jerall, who was still next to the store, tried to come up behind one of the samurai with a thrust of his sword. However, the samurai turned his head and saw Jerall before throwing a back kick and knocking Jerall to the ground. The samurai pulled his katana out of the scabbard and swung a down strike at Jerall, who barrel rolled out of harms way before rising to his feet. Jerall jumped back as the samurai swung his katana horizontally and saw the opening the samurai made. Jerall lunged forward and stabbed the samurai in the ribs, however, due to the samurai's armor, it didn't actually pierce the skin. Jerall saw the samurai swing a back fist which smacked against Jerall, knocking him down. Callum rolled under the samurai's kick and saw Jerall fall to the ground knocked out.
"Hang on, Jerall! I'll get ya!" shouted Callum, getting to his feet to run to his friend. But the samurai he was fighting grabbed him by the back of his shirt and spun him around, at the same thrusting his sword up to stab Callum. Luckily, Callum stepped to the side and then went behind the samurai, elbowing him in the process. He felt his shirt rip off due to the samurai's iron grip on it. Callum quickly used that time he had to kick the back of the samurai's knee and stab at an opening in the samurai's armor. The samurai yelped as he felt a sword stab his back and saw the end of the blade coming out in front of him. He immediately began to feel weak and crumpled backward. Callum left the sword stuck in the warrior and pulled out two steel daggers. The two samurai who were standing there next to the one who knocked Jerall out pulled their katana's out and stepped forward. Callum saw Jerall get slung over the other samurai's shoulder before the warrior took off running. Crap! Callum thought, angered he couldn't rescue Jerall. One of the samurai swung their katana downward at Callum, who sidestepped the attack and lunged forward with one of the daggers. He stabbed an opening on the shoulder of the warrior and pulled the dagger out immediately after. However, the samurai fought through the pain and threw a kick into Callum's ribs. Callum doubled over in pain and held his stomach.
"Hold him while I take his head off, that kid just took out our buddy over there." said the samurai that didn't get to fight Callum. Callum felt himself getting picked up and was locked in place by the other samurai.
"We gave you a chance to surrender, kid. But you just chose to attack us anyway. Life's too short, especially for you." said the samurai, preparing to slice Callum's head off. Callum closed his eyes, ready to die. Suddenly, a cry of pain was heard, and when Callum opened his eyes, he saw the samurai who was about to kill him had five arrows protruding from his back. Four samurai from Callum's territory were entering Gares, two with bows out and the other two with katanas. The black armored samurai with the arrows spun around just in time to see a katana cut through him, dropping the samurai instantly. The other samurai holding Callum wrapped his arm around Callum's neck and gripped tightly. Callum felt a blade poke his neck.
"You guy's make anymore moves, and this kid is done for." shouted the samurai. Callum saw one of the samurai whisper something to another samurai and then ran off around the burning store. Callum forgot for a moment about the burning village due to him focusing on fighting the samurai.
"Let him go by order of Shogun Lekkyu." said one of the samurai.
"No, I don't care. You will not get me to let go of him unless you guys surrender to me." said the samurai holding Callum.
"It's four of us and one of you."
"Nope, because one of your men deserted you guys." the black clad samurai retorted.
"That's where you are wrong." said a voice from behind Callum. He felt the pressure loosen from his neck and then a cry of pain. Callum spun around and saw a katana slither back out of the samurai's chest. The samurai who Callum saw run around the store crept up to the evil samurai and stab him after he grabbed the warrior and pulled them back.
"I have to go find my aunt. Thank you!" shouted Callum, running to the tavern. However, he saw that the roof came down and all there was left was a pile of sticks and stones.
"Aunt Nya, are you in there?" shouted Callum.
A bad feeling started to envelope Callum. He knew Aunt Nya was still working, because she didn't get off until half an hour after Callum.
"Guy's, that farm over there is burning too!" shouted a voice from behind Callum. He froze as he turned and spotted one of the samurai standing atop a small mound pointing off in the distance.
"No, no, no." Callum began as he ran forward and joined the samurai. Sure enough, he saw exactly what the samurai was pointing at. The house, barn, and the fields were burning. Callum scanned the fields, and that was when he spotted a body. The body was burnt and had smoke steaming off. Callum's heart sank when he recognized the clothing.
It was Uncle Maek.