Having been sacrificed by his village shaman, Famine knows what it’s like to do anything to survive. He wanders the world, sowing drought and starvation in his wake. Yet he hates being the Black Horseman more than anything in the world, except the man who ended his life all those centuries ago. Famine never stops doing his job, and never allows himself to fall in love.
Ekundayo wants a better life for himself, so he steals a diamond from the mine where he works. Nothing goes well for him after that, and he finds himself dying in the desert on his way to the border. When he’s rescued by Famine, Ekundayo isn’t sure if his luck has changed or not. The longer he stays in Famine’s company, the more Ekundayo discovers he just might be falling in love with Famine.
One bad choice of Ekundayo’s part, and a future together seems out of reach. Will Famine let his only possibility of love go or will he defy Death himself to keep Ekundayo?
Famine shot a glance at Death. The hair and eyes were the same colour, but this Death was younger, and if possible, even more cynical than the one who originally showed Famine the ropes. This Death became a Horseman shortly after the French Revolution. Famine always wondered if he’d been instrumentally in starting the genocide, but he didn’t have the nerve to ask Death about it. He figured Death wouldn’t have answered him anyway.
He’d learned about the Horsemen and how there were always four of them-Pestilence, War, Famine, and Death. Each one had a purpose in keeping the balance between good and evil. Each Horseman would come in, and if the mortals didn’t heed the first warning, the death tolls grew until someone in power changed the situations if they could. There had been two Deaths and two Pestilences since Famine came to be a Horseman. Of course, the most recent Pestilence had gone back to being mortal, and War did so as well.
With two new Horsemen, Death seemed a little more rushed and not as interested in dealing with Famine’s issues. Not that Death cared all that much before. Out of all the Horsemen Famine had dealt with, this Death seemed the less guilt-stricken by what he’d done in his mortal life to get him the illustrious job as Death, the Pale Horseman.
“Will the others be coming here?”
Death shrugged one shoulder. “War will probably be showing up. I believe the warlords are getting restless, and it’s time for them to go on another rampage. I’m hoping this skirmish is the one to convince those in power to do something about the innocents here.”
The Pale Horseman didn’t sound convinced that it would happen, and neither was Famine. He’d been through too many centuries of wishing the mortals would pay attention to their warnings, but so far none of them had. Oh, wars would end, and diseases would be eradicated, but only for a little while before they started fighting amongst themselves again. As the balance between good and evil tips in favour of one or the other, the Horsemen rode out to even things again.
Famine glanced down at the dirt under his horse’s hooves. It was dusty and dry because no water had fallen in the area for more than six months. Before that, what rain did fall had been soaked up so quickly, nothing had a chance to grow. The ground was fallow like it’d been sown with salt. Famine had walked miles around the area, ensuring nothing would grow for decades to come.
“I have to go,” Death declared.
“All right. Oh, wait. How are Pestilence and War doing with their mortal lovers? Have you seen either of them?”
He wasn’t sure why he wanted to know. It wasn’t like he and the other two were best friends or anything. More colleagues than anything else. Maybe he wanted to know they were happy because he hoped for a good outcome for himself. Famine didn’t know if he did believe in his ability to fall in love. How could there possibly be someone out there who could fall in love with a man who sowed famine and drought wherever he walked?
Famine touched the medicine bag lying on his chest. When he’d first become Famine, he’d been given the bag full of salt, and told his power of drought and starvation manifested in it. He never took it off, fearing someone else would get a hold of it, and cause more problems. Yet Famine had been informed no one else could do what he did, which didn’t make him feel any better about his job.
Death pursed his lips, looking thoughtful for the first time since Famine met him. “They seem to be getting on rather well. I’m surprised at how well they are adapting back into the mortal world.”
“Do you talk to them or anything?”
“No. They remember their time as a Horseman, but we’re not allowed contact with them. They are to fully incorporate back into mortal life.” Death shook his head. “I’m not worried about them anymore. They will live and die like the mortals they fell in love with.”
Famine was glad to hear that. Living alone for centuries, and interacting with mortals very rarely made for a lonely existence. At least Pestilence and War were able to take time off once in a while. Next to Death, Famine was the busiest of the Horsemen. The African continent was in a state of constant turmoil, and he spent a majority of his time walking from one end to the other, spreading the drought and starvation to as many mortals as he could. He rarely travelled outside to the other countries in the world.
Hope you enjoyed the sneak peek. On Friday, you’ll get a peek at Death, which I’m hoping will be done by then or very very close to being done. 🙂 Have a great Wednesday.
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