John Flanagan: Oakleaf bearers

Здесь есть возможность читать онлайн «John Flanagan: Oakleaf bearers» весь текст электронной книги совершенно бесплатно (целиком полную версию). В некоторых случаях присутствует краткое содержание. категория: Фэнтези / на английском языке. Описание произведения, (предисловие) а так же отзывы посетителей доступны на портале. Библиотека «Либ Кат» — LibCat.ru создана для любителей полистать хорошую книжку и предлагает широкий выбор жанров:

любовные романы фантастика и фэнтези приключения детективы и триллеры эротика документальные научные юмористические анекдоты о бизнесе проза детские сказки о религиии новинки православные старинные про компьютеры программирование на английском домоводство поэзия

Выбрав категорию по душе Вы сможете найти действительно стоящие книги и насладиться погружением в мир воображения, прочувствовать переживания героев или узнать для себя что-то новое, совершить внутреннее открытие. Подробная информация для ознакомления по текущему запросу представлена ниже:

John Flanagan Oakleaf bearers
  • Название:
    Oakleaf bearers
  • Автор:
  • Жанр:
    Фэнтези / на английском языке
  • Язык:
    Английский
  • Рейтинг книги:
    4 / 5
  • Ваша оценка:
    • 80
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
    • 5
  • Избранное:
    Добавить книгу в закладки

Oakleaf bearers: краткое содержание, описание и аннотация

Предлагаем к чтению аннотацию, описание, краткое содержание или предисловие (зависит от того, что написал сам автор книги «Oakleaf bearers»). Если вы не нашли необходимую информацию о книге — напишите в комментариях, мы постараемся отыскать её.

John Flanagan: другие книги автора


Кто написал Oakleaf bearers? Узнайте фамилию, как зовут автора книги и список всех его произведений по сериям.

Oakleaf bearers — читать онлайн бесплатно полную книгу (весь текст) целиком

Ниже представлен текст книги, разбитый по страницам. Система автоматического сохранения места последней прочитанной страницы, позволяет с удобством читать онлайн бесплатно книгу «Oakleaf bearers», без необходимости каждый раз заново искать на чём Вы остановились. Не бойтесь закрыть страницу, как только Вы зайдёте на неё снова — увидите то же место, на котором закончили чтение.

John Flanagan


Oakleaf bearers

RANGER'S APPRENTICE


BOOK IV

.

1

I T WAS A CONSTANT TAPPING SOUND THAT ROUSED W ILL FROM his deep, untroubled sleep. He had no clear idea at what point he first became aware of it. It seemed to slide unobtrusively into his sleeping mind, magnified and amplified inside his subconscious, until it crossed over into the conscious world and he realized he was awake, and wondering what it might be.

Tap-tap-tap-tap:It was still there, but not as loud now that he was awake and aware of other sounds in the small cabin.

From the corner, behind a small curtain of sacking that gave her a modicum of privacy, he could hear Evanlyn's even breathing. Obviously, the tapping hadn't woken her. There was a muted crackle from the heaped coals in the fireplace at the end of the room and, as he became more fully awake, he heard them settle with a slight rustling sound.

Tap-tap-tap:

It seemed to come from nearby. He stretched and yawned, sitting up on the rough couch he'd fashioned from wood and canvas. He shook his head to clear it and, for a moment, the sound was obscured. Then it was back once more and he realized it was coming from outside the window. The oiled cloth panes were translucent-they would admit the gray light of the pre-dawn, but he couldn't see anything more than a blur through them. Will knelt on the couch and unlatched the frame, pushing it up and craning his head through the opening to study the small porch of the cabin.

A gust of chill entered the room and he heard Evanlyn stir as it eddied around, causing the sacking curtain to billow inward and the embers in the fireplace to glow more fiercely, until a small tongue of yellow flame was released from them.

Somewhere in the trees, a bird was greeting the first light of a new day, and the tapping sound was obscured once more.

Then he had it. It was water, dripping from the end of a long icicle that depended from the porch roof and falling onto an upturned bucket that had been left on the edge of the porch.

Tap-tap-tap:tap-tap-tap.

Will frowned to himself. There was something significant in this, he knew, but his mind, still fuddled with sleep, couldn't quite grasp what it was. He stood, still stretching, and shivered slightly as he left the last warmth of his blanket and made his way to the door.

Hoping not to wake Evanlyn, he eased the latch upward and slowly opened the door, holding it up so that the sagging leather hinges wouldn't allow the bottom edge to scrape the floor of the cabin.

Closing the door behind him, he stepped out onto the rough boards of the porch, feeling them strike icy cold against his bare feet. He moved to the spot where the water dripped endlessly onto the bucket, realizing as he went that other icicles hanging from the roof were also dripping water. He hadn't seen this before. He was sure they usually didn't do this.

He glanced out at the trees, where the first rays of the sun were beginning to filter through.

In the forest, there was a slithering thump as a load of snow finally slid clear of the pine branches that had supported it for months and fell in a heap to the ground below.

And it was then that Will realized the significance of the endless tap-tap-tap that had woken him.

Behind him, he heard the door creak and he turned to see Evanlyn, her hair wildly tousled, her blanket wrapped tight around her against the cold.

"What is it?" she asked him. "Is something wrong?"

He hesitated a second, glancing at the growing puddle of water beside the bucket.

"It's the thaw," he said finally.

After their meager breakfast, Will and Evanlyn sat in the early morning sun as it streamed across the porch. Neither of them had wanted to discuss the significance of Will's earlier discovery, although they had since found more signs of the thaw.

Small patches of soaked brown grass were showing through the snow cover on the ground surrounding the cabin, and the sound of wet snow sliding from the trees to hit the ground was becoming increasingly common.

The snow was still thick on the ground and in the trees, of course. But the signs were there that the thaw had begun and that, inexorably, it would continue.

"I suppose we'll have to think about moving on," Will said, finally voicing the thought that had been in both their minds.

"You're not strong enough yet," Evanlyn told him. It had been barely three weeks since he had thrown off the mind-numbing effects of the warmweed given to him as a yard slave in Ragnak's Lodge. Will had been weakened by inadequate food and clothing and a regimen of punishing physical work before they had made their escape. Since then, their meager diet in the cabin had been enough to sustain life, but not to restore his strength or endurance. They had lived on the cornmeal and flour that had been stored in the cabin, along with a small stock of vegetables and the stringy meat from whatever game Evanlyn and he had been able to snare.

There was little enough of that in winter, and what game they had managed to catch had been in poor condition itself, providing little in the way of nourishment.

Will shrugged. "I'll manage," he said simply. "I'll have to."

And that, of course, was the heart of the problem. They both knew that once the snow in the high passes had melted, hunters would again begin to visit the high country where they found themselves. Already, Evanlyn had seen one such-the mysterious rider in the forest on the day when Will's senses had returned to him. Fortunately, since that day, there had been no further sign of him. But it was a warning. Others would come, and before they did, Will and Evanlyn would have to be long gone, heading down the far side of the mountain passes and across the border into Teutlandt.

Evanlyn shook her head doubtfully. For a moment, she said nothing. Then she realized that Will was right. Once the thaw was well and truly under way, they would have to leave whether she felt he was strong enough to travel or not.

"Anyway," she said at last, "we have a few weeks yet. The thaw's only just started, and who knows? We may even get another cold snap."

It was possible, she thought. Perhaps not probable, but at least it was possible. Will nodded agreement.

"There's always that," he said.

The silence fell over them once more like a blanket. Abruptly, Evanlyn stood, dusting off her breeches. "I'll go and check the snares," she said, and when Will began to rise to accompany her, she stopped him.

"You stay here," she said gently. "From now on, you're going to have to conserve your strength as much as possible."

Will hesitated, then nodded. He recognized that she was right.

She collected the hessian sack they used as a game bag and slung it over her shoulder. Then, with a small smile in his direction, the girl headed off into the trees.

Feeling useless and dispirited, Will slowly began to gather up the wooden platters they had used for their meal. All he was good for, he thought bitterly, was washing up.

The snare line had moved farther and farther from the cabin over the past three weeks. As small animals, rabbits, squirrels and the occasional snow hare had fallen prey to the snares that Will had built, the other animals in that area had become wary. As a consequence, they had been compelled to move the snares into new locations every few days-each one a little farther away from the cabin than the one before.

Evanlyn estimated that she had a good forty minutes' walking on the narrow uphill track before she would reach the first snare. Of course, if she'd been able to move straight to it, the walk would have been considerably shorter. But the track wound and wandered through the trees, more than doubling the distance she had to cover.

Читать дальше

Похожие книги на «Oakleaf bearers»

Представляем Вашему вниманию похожие книги на «Oakleaf bearers» списком для выбора. Мы отобрали схожую по названию и смыслу литературу в надежде предоставить читателям больше вариантов отыскать новые, интересные, ещё не прочитанные произведения.


John Flanagan: The Ruins of Gorlan
The Ruins of Gorlan
John Flanagan
John Flanagan: The Burning Bridge
The Burning Bridge
John Flanagan
John Flanagan: The siege of Macindaw
The siege of Macindaw
John Flanagan
John Flanagan: Erak_s ransom
Erak_s ransom
John Flanagan
John Flanagan: Halts peril
Halts peril
John Flanagan
Отзывы о книге «Oakleaf bearers»

Обсуждение, отзывы о книге «Oakleaf bearers» и просто собственные мнения читателей. Оставьте ваши комментарии, напишите, что Вы думаете о произведении, его смысле или главных героях. Укажите что конкретно понравилось, а что нет, и почему Вы так считаете.