Monday, February 22, 2016

Man as Carnivore

Soquil rode towards the town. He was uneasy with the prospect despite, or perhaps because of, having done it several times before. It seemed to unnatural to be settled in one place. To stay. To be rooted. To not see a different horizon each day. It was wrong.

Fortunately, he was only visiting. As was proper. As it was for most people. They came and they went. The simplest tribes followed the vast herds of animals across the steppes. The more sophisticated tribes, the vast majority, had domesticated specific species and herded them from pasture to pasture. The freaks lived in towns. They did not free range their food animals. They actually penned them and grew their food to feed them. It was strange and unnatural. Not that they ate the plants they grew, they just grew what the animals needed to eat.

He rode in. Horses were one of the first the domesticates. They were useful, could carry a person or pull a cart or could even be eaten if things got bad. He rather liked his striped beast, his Lightning. The thought of eating Lightning was not appealing though. He's rather have sheep or goat.

He rode between the buildings. The tall and the small, the cramped and smelly place this was. The residents seemed smaller, misshapen. It must be being confined to the small spaces and not running free.

He had to admit though, they produced more interesting things than most people. Being a nomad meant you could only keep what you could carry. These twisted dwarfs did not fear being able to escape when a raid happened on the yurts, tents or families if they had too much. They had so much. They were so rich. Even their poorest. He hated them more for it.

They were more docile than people out on the steppes. He despised them as weak. Yet things would not blow up into death and blood as fast. Perhaps that made them weaker too. He didn't know.

He'd heard the towns were cropping up further and further West, into the forested lands and mountains of Europe. That was pleasing since they cleared away more and disconcerting at the same time. What if there were more people in towns than on the steppe? What if the dwarfs polluted the tribal packs? He towered head and shoulders above the townies and the thought of one of them sneaking into his blood line made him snarl.

Chengis dismounted from Lightning and tied him off. No one would think to take the horse. Death followed when a nomad's mount was taken. Minimally for the criminal. Often for many in the town. Some times for the entire town.

He growled low. Now he had to do the least pleasant part of the visit: he had to growl and spit and hiss and snarl at the mewling, stubborn merchants he needed to get the turf cutting knives from. They might pretend to be meek, but the merchants fought like they were in a death match when it came to price. He could contain is vicious anger. That was why he was sent. Others...could not.

He growled again. best to begin.

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