Another flash fiction scene; I love the possibilities behind this one:
“Ready?” Katlyn questioned.
I scowled as I tugged at the cloak hanging heavily from my shoulders. “Do I really have to wear this?”
Katlyn rolled her eye. “They’ll be waiting for a knight, a prince. And you want to go in jeans and a t-shirt? Honestly, Haden, one would think you don’t care what impression you make.”
The slightest of smiles curved my lips as I glanced about the huge domed room where white lights flashed off steel walls and great fans. “And in the meantime, I look like a complete fool here. The last hero got to wear black leather and a mask.”
“And that’s less conspicuous?” Katlyn shook her head as she moved about me, checking the straps of my armor.
“Besides, leather would be highly impractical.” Daven didn’t glance up from the set of controls as he spoke. “Jamenson was traveling to the planet Varintena in the Gloom Realm. You’ll be in the Cember Realm, and you’ll be glad for the extra garments once you step onto the Seda.”
“Don’t doubt it.” I pulled my sword part way out of my sheath. Notwithstanding the cloak and tunic, the sword was a cool touch.
“There will be high winds, maybe even sand storms,” Daven continued to ramble. “You’ll be entering the Seda about an hour before dawn, and our intelligence puts a party of Zenovian rangers on a ridge to your left.”
“And now…” Katlyn stepped back, tilting her head as she inspected me. “Is Hero 7C ready for deployment?”
I chuckled, then took a deep breath. “Ready.”
“And…opening.” Daven tapped a button and the wall before me slowly began to split in two, divided by a brilliant blue light.
“Expected operation time five weeks!” Daven called over the noise of a rising wind. “Be back by then!”
“You bet!” I raised one hand in an informal salute, squared my shoulders, then stepped forward.
For a brief moment, the blue humming light of the Realm Gate surrounded me, then I was through. Wind dashed sting bits of sand against my cheek and immediately I was glad for the cloak. Not that I’d admit that to Katlyn.
Below me the blue glow begins to fade, but I don’t look back as I continue deeper into the Seda, ready to lead yet another nation to victory against the dark forces of evil.