Image Prompt 026 Response: Escape by the Cliffs

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I selected the image of the Moher Cliffs for my twenty-minute sprint this week.

Escape by the Cliffs:

The fog was thick as Lea made her way slowly down the narrow path.  It was just a tiny strip of black dirt cutting through the grass at the edge of the cliff.  It was probably safe enough in daylight, but in the weak like just before dawn it was all she could do to put one foot in front of the other without slipping.  It had rained the night before, leaving the path and the grass equally slick and treacherous.

When the wind picked up, Lea stilled, holding her cloak tight around her slim frame.  If the wind caught it with enough force, it could pull her off her feet.  From the right angle, that could send her tumbling over the cliff into the water she could hear below.  The fog was so thick she couldn’t make out much more than the shapes of the cliffs.

As soon as the wind died down again, Lea started to pick her way down the path once more.  She needed to put as much distance between her and the castle before dawn.  If the noticed she was gone before she was out of sight, they’d send someone after her.  She was fairly sure they’d send someone anyway, but she hoped this way they would think she’d ran toward the next town by way of the road, and take longer to pick up her trail.

Lea almost didn’t notice when it started to rain again.  It was such a gentle rain that it blended with the mist.  Lea pulled the hood of her cloak further down to shield her face, bending her head forward so she could focus on her path while avoiding some of the wet.  She made each step carefully, avoiding the rivulets of water that began to trickle down the path.

The path turned, following the edge of the cliffs, and Lea glanced back toward the castle.  She couldn’t see it through the fog.  There was a chance she would remain undiscovered even when the sun came out and the mist began to fade.  The rain would mean the mists would last far longer than usual.

Lea turned away from the castle.  She hoped to never see it again.

Memories came unbidden as she continued her slow progress along the narrow path along the cliff’s edge.  She’d been excited the first day she arrived at the castle.  Its lord had head of her mother’s skill and brought her whole family to live at the castle.  It had been so large and new and interesting then.  He fascination had long since worn away to leave resentment in its place.  When she was young, before she’d shown signs of inheriting her mother’s gifts, she’d been allowed to roam freely and visit the nearby village whenever she wanted.

Last night, after everyone had gone to their beds, she’d had to climb out an arrow slit to leave.  Lea refused to be a prisoner any longer, even if it meant being an outlaw the rest of her life.