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The Hariner by Evie Thurgood

“The prize is 1000 yags. You can’t miss out on that,” the young, brown haired lady admonished. “We need your help.” The former hariner sighed, and leaned her chair back. “Fine. If we don’t find it by three months, I’m out.” The young lady smiled, “You will not regret it.” Then, the two women shook hands, and the brown haired woman nodded. “We welcome you to our ship, Hariner Zelaroli.” Then, she left. The now employed Hariner watched her go before murmuring, “I hope I won’t be disappointed–or there will be consequences.”

The brown haired girl, Pualani Aramoot, stood on the dock, waiting for The Hariner to arrive. A swift ocean breeze blew a salty scent across the dock and through the night sky. Wood creaked in the darkness ominously, and sails floated on the wind. This is where I like to be, Pualani noted. After a few minutes, she checked the time. Is she late? We need to leave before the sun rises. Just then, a figure emerged through the darkness-the shape slowly made its way to the tip of the weather worn dock before stopping in front of Pualani. “Are they ready?” The Hariner whispered so quietly, not even the seagulls could hear. Pualani nodded her head very slightly, so from a distance, the motion could not be seen. Then, she turned and guided the way up the boarding plank which led to a ship. All the lights on this vessel were out; but, if one were to inspect it very closely, then they would find the crew was completely alert and ready to start their voyage. This is certainly not as grand as my last one, Hariner Zelaroli observed quietly, I doubt this crew is worth anything. It will take a lot of work in order for this to go well. Following Pualani, The Hariner descended creaky steps to the lower deck. A rotten, moldy smell greeted their noses. At least, that is what it would have smelled like if The Hariner hadn’t lost her sense of smell. A red, weathered, oak door greeted them at the base of the stairs. “I will go and prepare them ma’am.” Pualani Aramoot looked at Hariner Zelaroli for permission before disappearing through the oak door. After about five minutes, the brown-haired woman returned. “They are ready.” The Hariner walked straight in, ignoring the bow Pualani gave, and stopped in front of what was now her crew. Pualani followed after quickly, and introduced The Hariner, “This is Alleirbag Zelaroli, your new Hariner.”

After exchanging bows, Alleirbag lined the crew up based on size. This is the most bizarre crew I have ever commanded. Probably even succeeds the crew of katers I commanded many years ago. The Hariner observed while sizing up the crew members. I should talk to them individually-find the weak points. The first to be spoken to was a tall hayfig. With broad shoulders, long torso, and four arms, hayfigs were extraordinary at getting things done promptly, and were amazing in a battle. Especially when they had a sword in each hand. “What’s your name?” The Hariner barked. The hayfig replied rather shyly, “Carl, ma’am.”

“Tell me, what’s your job on this ship?”

“I am in charge of the cooking and cleaning Hariner.”

You’ve got to be kidding me, The Hariner glanced at Aramoot, who replied with raised eyebrows. Shaking her head, The Hariner moved on to the next member: a refed. Refeds are talking deer who are pretty much useless. Unless you want to hold a conversation for an hour. What is he doing here? The Hariner shot another glance at Pualani before continuing. “What’s your name? And what’s your duty here?” The Hariner snapped menacingly.

“My name is Migalo, which is my great-grandfather’s name. He had over eight different titles…” Only after The Hariner had stared the refed down did the deer finally stop talking. “Oh-” he grinned sheepishly, “My job is steering.” “Cut!” The director called, stopping all movement on the set. “Jeanna, The Hariner is supposed to despise directing this ship. You need to show me more hatred. Everyone else, show some fear! The Hariner may kick you off the ship, and then you’ll have nowhere to go!” Everyone on set nodded their understanding, and the director commanded, “Also, will someone fix the ear on Migalo? It’s crooked!” One of the costume designers rushed onto the set, and within seconds the ear was fixed. Nodding his approval, the director called, “Silent on the set! Ready, set, action!” One year later, the movie The Hariner, was released.

***

Evie Thurgood, 16, loves to write when she’s not busy playing percussion! She hopes to change the world and help herself and others become better people. She really enjoys creating videos, and maybe someday she will turn her stories into films.

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