This is my rough draft completely unedited. For a full explanation go to Part I.
It was everything Kael had dreamed of and more. By the look on Bannon’s face he was long past acting unexcited.
The Ferryman was stern faced and sat without seeming to notice the glory that was flight. They lifted off of the island and flew high above.
The feeling was a mixture of fear and excitement and that’s what Kael loved about it. They gave you a small belt that was tied to the saddle so you wouldn’t fall off. That wasn’t enough for Kael at least to overcome the fear of being up so high with nothing left underneath except a turtle.
The sky never seemed so vast without the sight of land nearby. It surrounded them all the way down to the fog that never left. It was unlike anything Kael had seen.
Before long it almost seemed normally for them to be flying through the sky. Then a shadow appeared on the horizon in front of them. The shadow formed the closer they got into an island. The closer they got the more detail, Kael began to see.
It looked as if birds were swarming all about the island. Before he could comment on that Bannon whispered.
“They’re turtles…” The idea shocked Kael. He thought surely that wasn’t the case. How could there be so many turtles in one place. He had only ever seen one turtle at a time. From the edge of the clearing at the ferry station on his own island.
He stayed silent in the awe of it and also because he was unsure if it was actually true. He didn’t want to seem ignorant.
As they approached it became obvious that they weren’t birds but turtles. Kael was amazed all over again. It was hundreds of turtles flying to and from the island. The entire edge of the mass of land was fully of ferry stations.
The turtle they were currently on was surely the biggest turtle Kael had ever seen, but as they pulled even closer still he began to recognize the sheer size of some of the turtles. He was counting over 8 people in one saddle.
How could something possibly even get that big.
Soon they landed Bannon and Kael both forgot the pleasantries with the Ferryman. They dismounted and half jogged to get a closer look at the majesty of everything around them.
“I suppose this is the terminal that the Post man was talking about.” Kael had just remembered that they weren’t headed directly for Goya and the turtle farm. He wondered if this was just the terminal, what the turtle farm could possible be.
“Well, where do we go now?” Bannon seemed concerned with their lack of direction.
A grin spread across Kael’s face, “I don’t know brother, I guess we will just have to find out.” This was the adventure Kael was dreaming of already. He didn’t even want a plan. There was no hurry, there was no reason to be anywhere at anytime. He wanted to get to Goya, but it could be today, the next day, or the day after that.
Bannon seemed to be realizing the same thing. Well I suppose we can find something to eat, I’m starving, you think they would give you a snack on that blasted turtle. Peanuts or something..” His words grumbled off into incoherence. It was like all the toothy smiling he was doing had to be made up with for a little sourness.
Kael didn’t let it bother him. He had known Bannon for a long time and was used to ignoring his plainly fake grumblings. They had barely spoken the whole flight just out of sheer awe of what was happening. Food had not crossed Kael’s mind once, but now that Bannon had said something, he felt his stomach churn with the anticipation of something good.
“I guess we can follow this path to the city.” Bannon started heading towards the center of the island and Kael followed. There was no where else that seemed like a better option. Almost immediately they began running into shops, restaurants, taverns, and all the rest you would expect from a town. It was not in the center of the island. It was close to the ferry points for all of the Turtles.
Kael had never seen so many different kinds of food. The were on a cobbled street with vendors shouting out what they had on either side. People bustled all about. Many with different kinds of packs and toting bags in their arms. They all seemed wore out and didn’t even seem to notice all the people around them.
The food itself was beyond interesting, Kael didn’t know there was those kinds of smells. Some spicy, some sour, some sweet. It all converged together and it wasn’t bad. It was just so completely different from what he was used to. Back on the home island. It was beef with almost every meal. It was savory and had familiar tastes to Kael.
Better than the food though. The variety of people caught Kael’s attention. So much so that he forgot that he was staring and people began to give him odd looks when they made eye contact with each other.
“See something you like.” Yelled a gruff man at Kael. Kael immediately shook his head and shook his head with a mumbled “No.” the man must’ve not cared that much because he just kept on walking. Kael had to be more careful. But when you grew up in a place that you hardly saw new faces at all, this was all but overwhelming.
Turning his attention back to the food, he found a stand that had a huge metal bowl full of shredded meats, veggies, and it was all tinges with a faint bit of red. The spices overwhelmed Kael. He had to try some.
Bannon was in a similar state as Kael. Wide eyed gaping at all that was going on about him.
“Let’s try that.” Kael had to say it twice, the second time louder before Bannon could hear him over the cacophony of noises. He nodded when he saw what Kael was pointing to. He must’ve been quite overwhelmed to not have some snide comment about the choice of food.
The comments came when they had their food and head off of the main cobbled street to find a place to eat.
It was very odd a few steps out from the main thoroughfare and it very quickly turned into wooded forest like you would expect from the island.
It was not silent but they could definitely hear themselves think again.
“Can you believe how much this slop cost us.” Bannon gestured at the food that was given to them in a thick paper of some sort.
“Eh could be worse.” Kael the forever optimist.
With hunger taking over they both dug in. It was an explosion of flavor. They must’ve used all there spices in one bowl. Kael thought. He liked it. It was so foreign to what he knew and it was like his tastebuds were traveling the world just as the rest of his body was. He took a few more mouthfuls with glee. Then the smile slid off of his face.
It burnt. He spit the food out, Someone had literally lit his mouth on fire. Who could eat this.
He saw Bannon taking smaller bites and laughing at Kael’s plight.
“What is that?” Kael asked incredulously.
“That’s called spicy my friend. Me momma has a few of these type recipes. It’s an acquired taste.” Bannon turned his face up as he said the last like he was some sort of high class man now.
After recovering from the initial shock Kael went in for another bite this time smaller. He chewed it up completely and swallowed. It was spicy made his lips feel like they were on fire but he persevered through. Bannon seemed to be having no problem so he could learn to like it as well.
The next few hours his whole body rejected the decision to eat spicy food.