Through glen and glade, I’ll be with you again

by jaywcoombes

Mist settled over the valley during the long night. As dawn broke, the first rays of the rising sun pierced the gloom and left twinkling droplets on the heath and rocks. The sound of marching feet echoed across the rocky landscape. A slow drumbeat started, accompanied by the mournful sound of pipes. Leather boots trampled the grass and stamped the hardy plants fighting for survival. 

Cresting a rise overlooking the valley whole, a thousand painted faces threw a thousand tartaned cloaks over a thousand travel-strained shoulders. As the sun rose higher, the mist gave way and the light grey of nature was replaced with the dark clouds of humanity. Billowing black smoke spiralled from burning huts, and the scent of blood, bile, and burnt flesh rose to meet the thousand men. A wall of red stained steel and flesh stood defiant in front of the decimated village, flags of red and white dancing with the acrid smoke. 

Pipes flaring, drums beating, and chests heaving, a thousand doomed men charged down the valley sides, hungry to be with their loved ones again.