This story continues a series of short fiction exploring some of the Faerie Shepherds and Shepherdesses within my fantasy world. Read below the story for further explanation and head over to the Tales of the Faerie Shepherds if you’d like to read more!

High atop the peak, rose a resolute aerie. Hidden within, Elsu bowed his head. Unrest filled him as he tuned in to the pain and fear nature revealed. Few men would be allowed inside an eagle’s nest, but Elsu was no mere man. Faerie Shepherd of Nature and Feathered Creatures, he had long listened to the shifting in the earth beneath him, the rustling of feather-tips all around and the whispers rising in the trees and rocks. 

Tonight, whispered dirges drifted on the wind where joyful chatterings had played mere hours before. The promised chosen had arrived, delivered at the perfect time. Maelphaeus quelled all celebratory sounds, though, as he took this occasion to unleash his Daemons across the realms. Their chains unbound, or at least loosened, the degenerate creatures spread terror in their wake. 

Elsu felt each beat of the earth’s mourning complaint through his bare feet as its trembling ebbed and flowed beneath them. The wind rose, wrapping him in its urgent pleas as it caressed the long black hair that usually hung in braids, clinging securely to his waist. The brown runes across his dark chest began to twirl and dance; his hair waved against the wind, directing it and driving its movements. As the tattooed markings took their leave of Elsu’s chest to dance around the Shepherd, he lifted his head toward the heavens. Two golden beams of light shone forth as he opened his eyes. Arms outstretched, hands uplifted, Elsu called out,

Unisomuntia; unisomuntia, Dhae. Gun ta mi toren ei ventis quattuoris. Voíthetia mi fleigh.

A golden shimmer remained around his sparrow-brown eyes as Elsu scaled the aerie’s wall. Music—a swooshing sound—met him, and he joined in with a chanting duet. In the Feathersong of the Eagles, Elsu called out his charge to intercept Maelphaeus’ demonic hordes. 

Arms outstretched, Elsu soared. 

Feathersong in the Aerie” Copyright © 2019 by Joy E. Rancatore. All Rights Reserved.

What do you think about this world of mine that I’m building? Elsu first appeared in “Beneath the Green Corn Moon.” If you enjoyed this story, please head over to my site to read the entire Tales of the Faerie Shepherds series.

This month’s story flowed from the inspiration of a delightful monthly online writing prompt, #BlogBattle. As you will read on their site, “Blog Battle is a monthly writing prompt meant to inspire writers and entertain readers.” To read several outstanding stories inspired by August’s prompt, “Intercept,” head on over to the BlogBattlers site!

You may just find a new favorite author to follow!

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