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This week’s Trifecta Writing Challenge word was “band.” This is “Travelers.”

I wrapped my cloak tightly around me as the breeze threatened the wanderer’s attempts to maintain a fire. He laughed, shifting into position to block the wind as he added more kindling.

“You know,” he said, “you’re not doing too well at this whole adventuring thing.”

“What makes you say that?” I asked, indignant. “After all, you were the one who was walking through the desert at mid-day with nothing in your waterskin.”

“Oh, sure, you’ve got supplies. I saw them. But have you got a weapon?”

I stared blankly at the man. The fire crackled as he stoked it.

“Of course I’ve got a weapon. I’m not about to go away from the city without something to defend myself.”

“Some raggedy stick?”

I clutched my staff. “They’re the weapon of my order. We train with them from the time we’re able to walk. If I wanted to, I could kill you seven different ways with it before you could shout for help.” I found myself briefly wishing that I’d never stopped to help him.

“My blade could slice it in two before you noticed, boy. Case in point.” He glanced at my neck, and I followed his eyes down. A sword extended from his hand to my throat, the blade a hair’s breadth away. “But I think,” he went on, his eyes flicking back up to my shoulder, “that it would be for our mutual benefit to band together. At least until we cross the Sand Sea.”

“…”

“Don’t be scared of me, boy. It’s just that there are things out there in the dark, and it doesn’t seem that you can see them. Otherwise you’d have noticed…HIM!”

I felt the blood dripping down my arm as the wanderer’s sword flew from my neck and pierced something behind me.

“A…agreed…” I looked down at the bleeding creature.

“You and me, kid. We’ll do okay.”

“I hope so.”

“You’ve got supplies. I can see these things. It’ll be fine.”

The wanderer stoked the fire.