Categories > Books > Wheel of Time > The Neverending War

Escaping the Old

by Minodrin 0 reviews

The first China chapter, showing off the characters.

Category: Wheel of Time - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Action/Adventure, Sci-fi - Characters: Other - Warnings: [?] [V] - Published: 2005-06-27 - Updated: 2005-06-27 - 1783 words

Chapter 3
Escaping the Old

The thatched roof seemed more distant than usual, Cao Long though as he lied at the small bed in the small wooden house. A few hours ago, while working at the local food processing plant, he had done something he could not describe. It felt magnificent, and because of that feeling, he had stopped working at the lines, instead trying to draw more and more of the power. He was more alive than ever. He felt like he was tenfold alive. He could see the drops of sweat at his co-workers faces, the small cogs in the machinery. Everything. However the line-foreman came to him within minutes, starting to shout at him to get back to work. That he had not liked, like he never did, but this time it was different. At that very moment he had felt as the powerful one, not the weak one that should be shouted on. And he had decided to punish the man; only he didn't know what he was doing, only that someone was trying to remove him from nirvana. And what he had done, he would now have to be punished for. It was as he had made ten unbreakable, burning, razor-sharp stones, flying around at incredible speed. Then he had directed them trough the body of the line-foreman. Moving with incredible speed they had cut the man to pieces within seconds, so fast that the man just fell apart into small pieces of meat. Cao didn't know how or why he had done it anymore, just that he had. After that he had escaped the factory of course. No one had tried to stop him, seeing what had happened to the line foreman, but he knew that soon they would come. Come to punish him.

Being so deep in his thoughts, he never heard any footsteps before a figure of someone appeared over his head. He was about to try to defend himself by attacking first before he noticed that it was only Ming Li, his would be fiancé. Not much chance of that happening now. It was terrible. She was so beautiful, with her beautiful skin, long black hair, big brown eyes, and he was, whatever it was that he was.

"I heard what you did at the plant. You used some kind of magic power, didn't you? No matter, the line foreman was an idiot either way. Besides... besides I did some casting too. Not like you, I just heated some water and tea, but still.". And even before she had finished, Cao had sprung himself out of the bed, shocked by the words "I did some casting too". He had though she would tell him that they would never meet again, and if not, he would have sent her away. No telling what he could do, he had though. And now he had learned she could do it too. The word was not magic and casting of course, it was channeling. He didn't know where that came from, but it was the right word, synonym, whatever it was.

Sitting up at the simple wooden bed, he started talking "What did you say?" He just couldn't believe what she had said. It was impossible, or was it? Maybe it wasn't, there was no reason why females couldn't be able to channel, was there?

"I said that I can cast magic too, and..." but Cao cut her off by saying "The word is channeling". He said it unconsciously, but he still said it. But she continued "Well, channeling if that is the word you want to use. Now where was I, oh yes. And there is talk in the village to surround your house at night and burn it down. They don't care about the news we are getting in here. The officials say that there are some in the world who are ... channeling right now, and you know how much they always lie. If they are forced to give this on the news, there must be millions of those like you and I out there. Come Cao Long, let's go together and find them." she said while getting up from the bed, and showing her hand out at Cao. "We can run fast, and they will never be able to find us. Then we will join the government, they are sure to create a guild for those like us. They have to, don't they? They serve the people, right?"

It felt like hours passed, it might have been. It might also have been seconds, Cao Long could not tell. He had been waiting for the police to come and capture him and send him to the court, or maybe they would just shoot him in his bed and send the bill for the bullet to his family, considering what he'd done. Now his love told them that they would escape, flee their elders and openly rebel. On the other hand it wasn't his fault, he didn't know what he was doing, or did he? Still, going somewhere to serve the government was the right thing to do, wasn't it? And he would live. So finally he took her hand, and they sneaked away in the night together, with only the little food they had taken in the small kitchen. The villagers didn't burn down the house that night, Cao's father managed to convince them that Cao had run away somewhere. They just hoped he had not taken Ming Li, his fiancée with him, but that hope was killed when she was nowhere to be found.

Cao and Ming on the other hand were running in fear for their lives. They had started their trek around midday, but it was surely past midnight once they stopped they believed, and the same thing the next day, only stopping rarely to eat their food unless they stumbled onto something edible.

It was a beautiful morning, and the picture of seeing Ming sleeping almost made Cao forget where they were, what they were and their problems. It was already two days ago since they had run away from the small village, two days with minimum food and water. But it was not much worse than how it had been before they left. Nowadays their biggest problem was meeting with a soldier or policeman, asking to see their papers, which they didn't have.

"What are you thinking about then?" a voice said from behind him. Lost in his thoughts, he hadn't noticed Ming awakening. As he turned around to look at her, he had only seconds to close his eyes, before a tube of water hit him in the face. She had channeled he realized, but knowing the she could channel and learning first hand was quite different. Still, it was not that bad, he could channel too. He had just not learned how to control it yet. Was it even possible? Probably.

"Time to stop thinking and start walking", Ming said to him "Else I channel your mouth full of cold water and make you swallow it" and with a smile on her face she stood up and started leaning towards a small tree. The smile vanished soon however, and it was Cao's time to smile. Well, he though, it seemed quite possible to channel at will, and everyone had always told him what a strange sense of humor he had. She didn't seem happy at all for the water she had been forced to swallow. Oh yes, he smiled very much. With a grumpy look, Ming Li began to walk down towards a small field to steal some breakfast. He quickly ran after her.

The field was a simple rice field, and the food quality was quite low, but it didn't matter, it was the same thing he had eaten for his whole life. There they hanged around for almost a half hour, even trying to pick up the corns using the One Power, but as clumsy as they were with it, they just chose to do it with their hands instead.

"What the hell are you doing!", an angry voice called out from behind. It was the owner of this field who had spotted them. Before the man could do anything more, Cao had wrapped him up with solid air. Not as the air had solified around the man, no, he could still breath, but something much like that. Cao was shocked, this was the first time he could actually feel what he was doing to the full extent. It was a fight, but a magnificent fight. He felt more alive than ever. Had he felt this when he killed the line-foreman. He could not remember. It was all so hazy now. And with the shock he lost grip of the man.

"You are one of the magicians, aren't you. Well, I hate all of you. Someday you will destroy the world with your powers. Go away, let me be, the government has a place for the likes of you, that it does. Too bad they just don't kill all of you." the man said. The man sounded angry and afraid, but the last part of what he said sounded as he said that to himself. Cao realized he had to make the man calm; after all, they were the thieves here.

"Why would I destroy the world. Even if I tried, I couldn't do that, and I won't even try. I want to save the world. All of us do, channeler and normal alike. What do you mean by the government has a place for us?" he said calmly and nicely. What had the man said actually?

Rising up from the ground, he had been on his knees before, the man answered. "Maybe you won't kill the world, but you make the decision that will lead to it. I am sure you bastards will do something like that. The government has set up a guild for the likes of you. Go to the village over that hill there, they will give you directions. And never return here. Ever." the man said while picking up a pitchfork. Not as if he could kill them with that, but Cao though the man felt more comfortable with some weapon in his hands. Not that he could blame him.

"Come Ming. We'll go over that hill. I am sure the government knows what it's doing, and better with them than being vagabonds in the countryside here. Come", and with those words, he started walking towards the small hill. Ming was already far ahead of him, she seemed eager to help the government he though, but it's not that important, was it?
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