CHALLENGE: Write a story, any AU, in which one of the guys breaks a bone. It doesn't have to be a long bone, or a weight bearing bone...it can be a toe (toes don't get enough respect....especially when they go snap....) or a finger....or,....well teeth aren't technically bones...but if you must break one of those that's ok too (those hurt a great deal and people look funny .... and a nose isn't technically a bone either but they hurt in the most incredible manner.....AND/OR 2) With this quote in mind....write a story in any AU...."(Doctor,) my eyes have seen the years, And the slow parade of fears without crying, Now I want to understand, I have done all that I could To see the evil and the good without hiding You must help me if you can...." -- Jackson Browne (Doctor my Eyes...)
MAJOR CHARACTERS: Ezra and a Brit
NOTES: Another story in my Revolution AU- the third. I hope you guys like this AU- I for one get a kick out of it. I'm writing this from an American point of view so I hope I did not offend anyone across the pond. I really don't know if the American Revolution stirs upthe same feelings as our Civil War does, so I don't really know how this AU from an American point of view is going over.
All right- there's an explanation to go with this piece. I was unsure of where to take this piece so I am posting what I have and will most likely post more. All suggestions on where the tale should go are welcome. I wanted to see what everyone thought. There should be more, but I don't know what. Tell me what you think!
AUTHOR: Lady Catherine Dunbar (Kelly)
Through his binoculars Ezra spotted the British regiment traveling along the wooded path below the spy's perch along the rise. A smile crossed the man's face. Right on time. The British are so predictable he thought, as he turned Chaucer around. As the ginger turned, his hooves displaced several stones, sending them rolling down, the rise above the road.
The small sound ringing in his ears, Ezra pulled Chaucer to a stop, staying absolutely motionless, carefully watching the regiment below.
The Colonel called a quiet halt to the march, pulling up on the reins, and pulling out his pistol. The man's eyes took in every part of the surrounding forest, as his men stood at the ready.
"There!" he shouted, leveling his pistol in Ezra's direction. "Fire!"
Ezra dug his heels into Chaucer's side, just as a ball grazed his side. Biting back a scream, Ezra toppled from his horse, tumbling down the hill. Un fortunately his path was halted when he slammed into an oak, his leg snapping on impact. Against his will, Ezra let out a low moan, clutching his side as he tried to double in on himself.
"I would suggest that you not move," came a calm voice.
Ezra peered up at a man on horse back staring down at him: the colonel. The man was staring calmly at him holding his reins while several of his men keeping muskets on Ezra.
Ezra merely nodded, the pain shooting through his leg too great for him to make one of his usual smart mouth remarks.
"What would you like us to do with him, sir?" a lieutenant asked.
The colonel cocked his head to one side. "Place him in the supply cart. General McNeil will want to speak to him." The colonel turned his horse but cast one more glance at Ezra. "It is quite a good thing for him that he choose to wear his uniform, or else he would of been hung."
Ezra watched him through slits, his teeth making mince meat of his inner cheek.
"Get up, traitor," a young corporal ordered. It was clear the man was a Captain, but his superiors had taught him to have little respect for the rebel forces. They were nothing but cowardly unorganized rabble after all.
Ezra groaned. The last thing on earth he wanted to do was get up.
"I said get up," the young man said again, becoming nervous that the man did not seem to be listening.
"Now, traitor," another corporal said, kicking him lightly.
"What is going on here?"
ALL the young men jumped at the commanding voice, as a captain on a black steed rode up on the little scene.
"He won't get up, sir," the first corporal reported.
"Perhaps that is because he is shot and most likely has a broken leg. Have any of you thought about helping him up?"
The men looked at each other for a moment before two of them stepped forward and grabbed Ezra by the jacket, pulling him roughly to his feet. Ezra turned ashen at the movement and nearly collapsed.
"Careful!" the captain barked. "The man is a captain, treat him with some due respect."
There was a chorused 'yes, sir' as the men took Ezra under the arms and half carried half dragged him to the supply wagon, where he was laid less than carefully. Laying on his back, Ezra laid his head down, breathing heavily.
The captain watched him carefully from atop his horse. He had to give the man credit, he had not cried out once in what had to have been a extremely painful experience.
A young private ran up.
"I'm putting this man in your care. See to it that he survives the journey."
"Yes sir," the private said as he hurried as he ran off to find something to make a tunicate for the wounded patriot.
The regiment stopped to set up camp in a field that mostly likely belonged to a local farmer at one time. Ezra lay near the edge of camp on his back, trying to keep from passing out again. Luckily for him he had lost consciousness shortly after being placed in the wagon. He was fairly sure it had occurred sometime while the private had been wrapping the graze on his side. As he fell into darkness he wished desperately for Nathan.
Unfortunately he had been awake for the transfer from the wagon and to his chagrin the young private had neglected to snap his leg into place and set it.
Now he was laying on his back trying to move as little as possible, praying he would fall unconscious.
Ezra rolled his head to the side to see the Captain from earlier squatting in front him.
"That is my name Sir," he said, trying to hide his pain beneath humor.
"I assumed it was. Colonel Ecelleston and I went through your belongings and found letters addressed to that name."
"Captain Ezra P. Standish of the Continental Army, sir."
The captain looked at the man a moment, surprised that the man seemed so unafraid considering he was a prisoner. Hell, the captain was surprised he was still conscious.
"Captain William Murphy of his Majesty's Army."
A trace of a small crossed Ezra's pale face. "A pleasure sir. Though I wish the meeting was under different circumstances."
Murphy nodded in understanding. His gaze turned to Ezra's leg, still at an awkward angle. "Has your leg been set?"
"I'm afraid not," Ezra answered. The South Carolinian thought he heard the British captain curse.
"I will see that it is done immediately and that you are brought food. We are not barbarians."
Ezra kept his mouth shut, resisted the urge to point out the many acts he had seen the British commit that hinted otherwise. He was incredibly hungry and needed to have his leg set. Now was not the time to point out his captor's faults.
"Thank you," Ezra said.
The captain nodded, knew that was hard for the patriot to say. "You are welcome," Murphy answered before standing up and walking back to the captains' tents.
For Ezra the night was absolutely wretched. Though the graze on his side had stopped bleeding, it was horribly tender, and his leg caused him great agony.
It had taken the private and another man nearly half an hour to get the bone set properly, which apparently had broken in two different places. Finally the bones had ground into place, just as Ezra passed out. His leg was then bound awkwardly in a splinter made from cloth and tree branches.
He had little food, the rations for the entire regiment being low. There had been no liquor forthcoming, the private to nervous to remember such an important part of the treatment. Thus Ezra spent much of the night slipping in and out of consciousness, attempting not to move from his position on his back.
Sometime in the middle of the night, when the rest of the camp was asleep, Ezra heard footsteps approach him.
"Who's there?" Ezra's guard asked in a hushed voice.
"At ease Private."
"I will keep watch over the prisoner private, go and rest."
Ezra could sense the young man's hesitation before he finally relented and moved away. He also could hear Murphy moving around and sitting beside him.
"Captain Standish?" Murphy whispered.
"Present sir," Ezra responded, pain evident in his voice.
"I brought you brandy, if you do not mind drinking a British vintage," he said, a bit of humor edging his usually stern voice.
"Normally I would decline, but at this instant I think the cause would forgive me." Ezra heard the Captain chuckle.
Moving nearer the wounded man, Murphy gently lifted his head and helped him with a few sips of brandy, which Ezra drank appreciatively.
"I am much obliged, Captain," Ezra said when he was finished, the brandy already warming him.
"Think nothing of it," Murphy said as he pocketed his flask.
"I would hate to be rude, sir, after such gentlemanly action, but what will be done with me?"
"You will be taken to brigade headquarters and questioned by General McNeal. After that you will be placed in a prison for officers till either you are exchanged or the war is over."
Ezra could not help but sigh. Sitting out the rest of the war in prison. Delightful. Not only was he not looking forward to incarceration, but he would be totally useless to the cause. His information would never reach Colonel Larabee. Worse, the others might never know what happened to him. They might think he was killed, or worse, ran off. Ezra groaned at that thought.
"Sorry I am not better company, Mr. Murphy."
"No need to apologize Mr. Standish. It is completely understandable, considering the circumstances." The man sighed, and then changed the subject. "How is your leg?"
"I will mend," Ezra said, trying to keep his voice even.
"I do hope so, sir." There was a short pause before Murphy asked softly, "What colony do you hail from?"
Ezra hesitated for a moment before answering. The man seemed honest enough, but there was always a chance that something he said could be used against him. He was hesitant to give the man any information about him at all.
"I promise you, sir," Murphy said after a moment, "anything said here tonight will stay here. I give you my word."
There was such conviction in his voice that Ezra conceded. "I come from the great colony of South Carolina."
"Quite a distance."
Ezra chuckled. "You are one to talk Mr. Murphy. You are nearly three thousand miles from yours."
The Southerner could hear Murphy chuckle. "True indeed Mr. Standish."
"From where in England are you from Mr. Murphy?"
"Ashbourne, it is in the center of the country."
Ezra smiled as he closed his eyes and took a few deep breaths. "Sounds lovely."
"It is." Murphy's voice took on a dream like tone. "A lovely town nestled in the country." He shook his head as his voice became even. "I'm afraid I have never been to South Carolina. I assume it is warmer there."
Ezra could not help but chuckle. "Aye, yes. It is warm nearly all year and the winters are mild. A truly lovely colony, if you can adjust to the heat."
Standish heard Murphy chuckle softly. "You sound as if you miss it."
Ezra shrugged as much as he could. "I have traveled often, and been home very little, but for some reason I feel as if it is my home."
If it had been day Ezra would have been able to see the sad smile that crossed the Captain's face. "I can understand that."
The two men simply sat there, each lost in their own thoughts. Ezra closed his eyes and for a few moments could almost see his Aunt's home, could see her standing there, waving to him and calling his
"Do you have any family Mr. Standish?"
Aunt Kitty faded away and all that was left was the darkness. Against his will Ezra sighed. A lovely vision destroyed.
"Simply my mother, and you sir?"
"My wife and my young daughter. I have not seen them in two years. Well," he stood up. "I should leave you to your rest. Good night Mr. Standish."
"Good night Mr. Murphy, and thank you for the drink."
"Do not mention it."
Ezra heard the man's footsteps falling away and closed his eyes, suddenly tired. Murphy may have been fine company and a gentleman, but that could not erase who he was or what he had said. Prison. Till the end of the war. Damn, was the last thought Ezra had before he fell off to sleep.
BROKEN Part 2
Yes- there's more. Everyone wanted to
see what happened so here's a bit more. I meant this peice to be short,
but its taking on a life of its own. I realized that I would be cheating
the story is I ended it to easily and quickly. I'm not sure where'll it
will take me, but we'll see.
Vin stomped over to Chris's fire, smacking his hat on his thigh, swearing.
Buck looked up from the map he and Chris were hunched over, worry etched on his face. "No luck Vin?"
Vin shook his head. "I followed the tracks as far as I could, but it got too dark to see and that weasel Southerner did a hell of a job of covering his tracks."
Chris sighed and rubbed his face. Damn. "Vin, you and Buck, will go out tomorrow morning and search for him."
Both men nodded curtly. Wherever Ezra was, they would find him.
Ezra looked up from the book he had been reading to find Captain Murphy standing in the doorway of the small room in which Ezra was lodged. A polite and genuine smile crossed Standish's lips.
"Good evening Mr. Murphy. To what do I owe this pleasant visit?"
Murphy held up the plate he was holding. "Supper, that is what."
"Then it is indeed a pleasant visit."
At this even the often stern Murphy could not help but chuckle as he handed Ezra the plate and watched the Southerner balance it on his lap.
The regiment had arrived at the brigade's headquarters that afternoon and after being questioned about his regiment and position, Ezra was placed in a small back room to allow his leg and side healed enough for him to be transported to an officer's prison near Boston. Except for the odd disgusted look, Ezra had been treated as a gentleman and allowed to keep most of his dignity.
"Thank you Mr. Murphy," Ezra said as he propped himself up further in bed in order to have better access to his supper.
"Think nothing of it, Mr. Standish. May I ask how your leg is?"
"Much better now that it has been seen to by your general's excellent physician." McNeal had generously offered Ezra the use of his personal physician, probably in sympathy at the idea of a private setting a man's leg in the wilderness.
"I will tell the general that you are pleased."
"Yes, Mr. Standish?"
"You have already been quite the gentleman, but I was wondering if you would allow me one more courtesy?"
"I will see what I can do Mr. Standish."
"It . . . troubles me that my regiment, that my commander, will not know what has become of me. Could you possibly convince the general to allow a letter simply informing my regiment that I am well to be delivered to my Colonel."
Murphy `s brow furrowed in thought as he looked at Ezra for a few moments, apparently trying to decide if Ezra was trying to con him. Then his brow smoothed and he nodded.
"The general would of course have to read it, but I do not see why not."
"Would you like a letter delivered to your family?"
Ezra cocked his head in thought for a moment, his eyes growing sad. "No," he said quietly and then louder, "No thank you, Mr. Murphy."
"Very well. I will see that you are brought ink, paper and quill. Now, if you excuse me Mr. Standish, I must be seeing to my duties. Good evening Sir."
"Good evening Mr. Murphy," Ezra said, returning the captain's polite nod.
The captain smiled and left Ezra alone to ponder his dinner as well as his letter.