According to the journals of Darmari the Nomad, as he heard it from the mouth of Moq-Anhata himself, when Anhata finally engaged the foreign warrior, the field cleared around them, and stilled for three days as the two armies watched in awe at the fury of their battle. War stories passed through the generations invariably say that the clashing of their weapons — Anhata’s morlan and the foreign warrior’s sword — rang out like cracks of thunder, and attracted the attention of the god of storms so that on the third day, a torrent of rain washed the bloodied plain.
Moq-Anhata recounted the match to Darmari at a conclave feast one night: “Never before had I faced a man who used such a style of fighting. He darted and wove through the thrusts, and sweeps, and blows of my spear, so that it was as if we danced rather than warred. He used speed and cunning where a plains rider would wield the power of his arm and the strength of his back. It was not until the rains on the third day that I realized why it was that the foreigner did not fight like any man I had known. I saw it when the downpour forced the warrior to remove his helmet, after it had washed away the mask of clay paint from his face. It was no man, but a woman with whom I had fought for three days!”
The first bit of actual story I’ve written out (as opposed to notes) from a novel idea, titled “Chronicle of Two Kings”, that was a candidate for this year’s NaNoWriMo. It’s intended to be fantasy — complete with magic and fantastical beasts — written in the style of a non-fiction book, and was inspired by my first read through of Jack Weatherford’s incredible Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World.
I’m mentally poking at another, related excerpt that falls a decade or so before this one. You may see bits and pieces of this project here and there, but I have a feeling I’m going to have a difficult time writing this one, if for no other reason than that I’ve never written any non-fiction before, and don’t really read much of it, and so am not familiar with the style and methods. It’s going to take some getting used to, and will probably take lots of practice/research/effort to get it right. I really like the titular characters as they currently exist in my head though, so I’m looking forward to seeing where their story leads. 🙂