It wasn’t all that long until the healer camp was in our sights. Now I was starting to get very nervous. What if they didn’t accept me as the new head healer? What if it was more and then I could take?
I could feel myself start to get all riled up in my heart start a race. I tried not to show how nervous I really was, but Avin must’ve seen something because he slowed so that he was right next to us.
I jumped a little when I felt something touch my hand. I looked down at my hand and notice that there was a different hand clasped around mine. I looked up to Avin, who was trying his best at a reassuring smile.
“You will do just fine,” Avin told me and gave my hand another squeeze. I tried to stop myself from blushing, but I fear that my attempts might have been in vain.
“Thank you,” I murmured to Avin. I sounded like a shy person. He always brought out that side in me. As much as I wanted to, I couldn’t look away.
Avin looked like he was going to say something else but I think he reconsidered because he just smiled at me instead. His smile to my breath away. He looked so hot even though the scars stretched across his face as he smiled. I suddenly got the urge to kiss him, like actually kiss him. I almost did, but then I remembered that he was engaged to someone else. That reminder shattered my mood entirely.
I looked away and removed his hand from mine. I gave Mirage a gentle kick and she started up again leaving Avin to follow us. I noticed that Tray looked up at me when I hung my head, disgusted with myself. Tray didn’t say anything, though. He just turned back around and continued to look around at the landscape. Avin caught up with us after a couple of minutes and led the way.
There were a few trees and some brush that we still had to pass through before we could get to the camp. Although as we got closer, the camp started to look more like a group of livestock barns. The only vegetation were the trees and brush behind the barns, everything in front of them looked scorched and charred.
The battle line. Oh jeez, it’s already reached this far already. I paused at the top of the hill and looked down at everything. I wanted to see exactly what I had to work with.
The buildings were in need of some major repairs. We would need to start a garden most likely so that we could get our own food and herbs, and probably create a place for the animals to stay in, so that they could be outside.
I could see a couple creatures that were tied it posts. They looked so sad. We were going to have to make some significant changes around here to make things easier for everyone involved. Avin stopped beside us and looked out at the land.
“It looks worse than the last time I was here,” Avin commented quietly. I looked to Avin and saw that he looked genuinely concerned. This place needed some direction and some leadership. I knew exactly what to do…well, sort of.
We slowly descended the hill and began making our way through the brush and trees. Avin led the way to the centre of all of the buildings. They looked worse up close.
I was about to dismount from Mirage, but Avin grabbed my arm and stopped me. I looked at him confused, but he just smiled at me and reached into his bag. Avin rummaged around for a moment in the bag before pulling out what looked like a horn of some sort. I just stared at him confused.
I looked down to Tray at the same time that he looked up at me. He looked just as confused as I was. We both quickly turned our attention back to Avin as he raised it to his lips and blue hard on the horn. A long, loud sound rang out and echoed all across the farmland. Once he was done, he put his horn back into his bag, but nothing had happened. Was something supposed to happen? Confused, I turned to Avin again.
“Lucy look,” Tray commented as he tugged on my right arm from behind me.
I turned my head to look where Tray was pointing. I watched as creatures of all kinds walked out of all the different buildings. I was surprised at how few of them there were. I was expecting at least 30 or 40 people to come out of the buildings.
If these people were supposed to be able to heal more than 60 people every 6 hours, then it was no wonder they were losing people so fast. There were only 20 healers that stood before us. Three people per person in 6 hours? That was barely enough time to regain sufficient energy to handle the next victim. What the hell were these guys thinking?
They needed way more people working here to make this place run more efficiently and productively. This was going to be a tough thing to straighten out. But in the long run, it would make things run more smoothly.
“Is this really everyone?” I asked Avin quietly but even to my own ears my voice sounded strained. I tried not to show how mad and stressed out I was about the enormity of the tasks that I had taken upon myself to do.
All of the healers were staring at me, expectantly. In the small crowd of people, I noticed Aquaphira almost immediately. She was standing at the back of the crowd smiling. I guess they all knew what had happened to their old leader.
I suppose that they were waiting for me to give them some sort of instruction. But I could tell that some of them didn’t want to be there by the way that they stood there, scowling at me like I was the bad guy. I was definitely going to have trouble with some of the people. I knew that not everyone was going to like the plans that I had.
I nudged Mirage slightly so that she would move forward a couple steps. I wanted to separate myself from Avin, to show them that I was the head authority here not him. Even though Avin was a prince, here he didn’t have any authority.
For a second I didn’t know what I was supposed to do or say at a time like this, I just sort of stared at everyone. I was pretty sure that Aquaphira had informed everyone who I was already. Also, what I did to get here.
“I’m pretty sure you all know who I am by now so I’m just going to skip the pleasantries and get down to business,” it’s been a long time since I’ve ever given a speech to a large group of people. “We are going to make some rather significant changes around here to help you guys to become more efficient in your healing. Starting off with fixing this place up and creating shifts so that people won’t get so quickly exhausted. Also, we will be creating a garden for us to get our herbs and vegetables from, to increase our independence and our survival rate. I assume that there used to be many more of you, and I’m terribly sorry for your losses, but that hasn’t stopped the war. Therefore, that won’t stop us. We will remember those that have fallen, and what it means to be a healer. Now how many of you have people that need to be taken care of now?”
I watched as 15 of the 20 people raised their hands. There weren’t scowls or tired faces in the crowd anymore. Every single one of them had a look of determination on their faces, and strength shone from their eyes. I guess that I had made a pretty good impression on them. These guys survived this long because they wanted to live and they had the strength of will to do it.
I could feel pride swell in my chest. We can deal with having only 20 healers here, assuming that is that they all are healers. We could make this work if that was all that we had. I mean it’s not like we had much of a choice because there was no one else.
“Okay, those who need to leave may leave, but everyone else stays here,” I ordered and watched as those 15 people quickly hurried back into the building that they had just come out of.
Now I was left with the five remaining healers, not including myself, Avin and Tray, who was still sitting with me on my saddle. I was going to be putting Avin to work for the remainder of the time that he was going to be staying here. We were going to need some male assistance in rebuilding a lot of the buildings. All of them looked like they were about to cave in. We couldn’t have we all of the people and animals that he had underneath those buildings.
“You two and Aquaphira can start a garden behind the middle building,” I announced pointing to a couple of the people that were left. All three of them nodded and quickly made their way to the back of the middle building. “As for the rest of us, we will be repairing the buildings, creating a storage hut for food and a corral for the animals to be in so that they won’t have to be cooped up all day.”
The group nodded and scattered about to the different buildings to begin repairs on the building structures and anything else that was damaged within the buildings that could cause immediate problems. I hoped that we would be in a better condition within three days, hopefully not too much longer than that, though.
I dismounted off of Mirage and helped Tray to get down off of her once I was on the ground. I could hear Avin dismount off of Elijah behind me. But now what were we going to do? I had given everyone else instructions except for us.
I was probably going to “float” around and see if anyone was in need of my help, considering how dysfunctional this place looked. I was fairly sure that the people who worked here weren’t too far off. There was just something else that I wasn’t quite understanding. Even if there were only the 20 healers here, there still wouldn’t have been as many deaths. I wanted to figure out what was causing the massive body count.
As for Avin, I would probably have him get to work on building the corral for the animals. I turned around to ask Avin if he could do that for me, but he nodded before I could say a word and headed off towards an empty space in front of all of the buildings. Tray looked up at me with his cute little eyes. It looked like he was silently asking if he could go with Avin. I sighed, smiling and nodded.
I stared after Avin and Tray for a moment. I was rather astonished at Avin’s willingness to help out. Truthfully I had thought that I would need to persuade him to stay and help out because I thought that he would be very anxious to get back to fighting. I was happy to see that I was wrong about him yet again. I watched Avin start to survey the land for a few moments until he actually started to get to work. He was quite the interesting person to watch.
After that, I left to check on how everyone else in that camp was doing with their tasks so far. I wanted to make sure that no one was really struggling with what they were doing. Although I’m pretty certain that we actually had fewer healers than I had first thought that we had.