Son of Shepard

The chapel bell tolled as the members of the community gathered. A sense of tension lingered as the mayor of Nora stepped forward to the podium.

“People of Nora, we gather here today…”

“Bring out the sorcerer!” a man in the crowd roared.

“String him up and burn his bones!” another shouted.

“My brethren please, don’t not let this turn into a communal dispute.”

“Bring out the sorcerer, bring him out! Bring him out!” the crowd roared.

The major closed his eyes for moment as the crowd’s roar echoed against the cobblestones, “Fine, bring out him out.”

Behind him the chapel doors opened as two guards lead out a chained boy no older than thirteen. His porcelain skin was marred by bruises as he walks out head bowed until he approached the mayor. Green eyes puffy from tears stared into the mayor’s brown eyes.

“Father, please…” the boy whispered

A sickening feeling turned the mayor’s stomach, “Lark, my child as the mayor of Nora I condemn you in the arts of witchcraft and sentence you to death by hanging may the gods have mercy on your soul.”

“No! Father please, no!” Lark wailed as he was dragged to the gallows.

“Mayor Shepard, take heart this is the gods will.”

Mayor Shepard glanced at the priest as he made his way out of the chapel, “He is the son of a step-father. After all it was you, Mayor Shepard who married a women who had already been laid. I warned you that nothing good comes out of a unpure woman”

The mayor bit his lip as he watched his son struggle as the guards put the noose around his neck. Lark chest heaved as silent tears rolled down his cheeks as he glanced at the crowd.

“Lark Shepard, son of Hans and Millie Shepard,” the priest shouted as he read the charges. “As high priest of Nora I condemn ye as a necromancer how do you plead?”

“N…ot…guilty….I….”

“Liar! Heathen! Demon, hang him! Burn him!” the crowd roared once.

“It would seem the people have spoken aye mayor Shepard?”

Mayor Shepard said nothing as he held his son’s eyes. He wanted to rush to Lark’s side and free him from the noose, this was his child, how could a son of his be a necromancer?  So with a heavy heart the mayor gave a curt nod, just the executioner gripped the lever.

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