Note: I will be posting a chapter from The Dangerous Life of Agnes Pyle each day until the book has been fully posted. I am doing this as a way to entertain those who have been coping with the new life of social distancing, social isolation, and quarantine in the world right now in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Once complete, I will hold the book on in full on my site until 1/1/2021. On that day, it’ll no longer be accessible for free.
I ask people to share links freely while the book is available, but please do not copy or do anything else without expressed permission from me, the copyright holder.
If you would like to skip ahead, you are always welcome to purchase a copy, just click the link HERE (or click up top at the menu bar) to go to the book’s page where there are links to where it is available in both print and ebook. Enjoy and I hope that you and your family are doing well!
The Dangerous Life of Agnes Pyle
by Jeremy C Kester
(c) Jeremy C Kester – All Rights Reserved
Safiya struggled to keep up with Majd who appeared to be moving effortlessly despite carrying Natalia’s dying body while also trying to support her. Most of the time going down the stairs she felt as though she was doing more falling than she was stepping down them.
Just as was described, when the three of them reached the bottom landing and peered outside down the alley, there was a small black sedan parked nearby with a man standing ominously against the car.
“Do we trust it?” Majd said nervously as he looked around trying to find any sign of danger.
Exasperated and barely able to speak Safiya replied, “I don’t know if we have much choice.” The sound of her voice alerted Majd to her condition. He honestly had not truly taken into account how she was.
“To hell, Safiya,” Majd said, his voice now teetering between fear for her and nervousness about what they had yet to encounter. “You need to rest.”
“Don’t stop. Let’s go. Natalia might not make it if you worry about me.” She struggled to stand as to temporarily trick him as to her being well enough to move on. Her mind barely had enough focus to be concerned about herself, and she didn’t want Majd to risk his life or the chance to save Natalia for her sake alone. If she could not make it by her own accord, she would not survive.
She was content with such thinking.
“No,” Majd demanded. “You will let me help.”
“Get her out of here!” she yelled, although it was barely more than a whisper.
“Leave me,” Natalia said. Her voice vaguely resembled anything with fortitude. “You both must survive.”
Safiya fell down to her elder dropping her axes to the side and gently gripping the woman’s hands with her own. With her one hand she pulled down her bloodstained veil revealing the clean, unblemished skin of her youth. “Don’t give up, Natalia. We cannot survive without your guidance. You must fight.” Her mouth tasted bitter and dry as she spoke, but without realizing it, the words from Natalia were giving her a renewed surge of energy.
“Take this, child,” Natalia said quietly as she struggled to untie her sheath and sword. Safiya assisted, her eyes blurring from the tears. “As long I can die here before they come, we will see each other again.” Each word popped as blood continued to choke her. The cut had been deeper than any of them had understood. She struggled with every draw of air to continue speaking. Though her body willed her to quit, she desperately clung on to pass on the last instruction to the girl. “Let me pass on from this world to the next. You must carry this fight now.”
Safiya nodded her head as she tightened her eyes trying to fight back the flood of emotions taking over her. She was exhausted beyond measure. Tears blurred what vision she had. She felt Majd’s hand rest gently on her shoulder. “We must go,” he said.
They pair watched as Natalia’s breathing quickened in a small spat of staccato breaths. Safiya’s instinct was to cover the woman in a desperate plea to carry on, but the calm strength of Majd’s hand held her steady. One final breath of air left Natalia as she grew still. She focused her energy to watch the woman’s aura fade out, her spirit passing to the other world before she would be satisfied enough to move on.
Quietly and as quickly as she could manage, she rested tied the katana next to her gladius and picked up the axes once more. “Carry me,” she said to Majd. “It will be most swift.”
He nodded, voices of the attackers now renewing their chase from the stairs once more.
If you would like to skip ahead, you are always welcome to purchase a copy, just click the link HERE (or click up top at the menu bar) to go to the book’s page where there are links to where it is available in both print and ebook.