Title: Natural Anthem
Summary: The White King faces a new battlefield.
Word Count: 380
EVERYONE GO LISTEN TO THE WANDERERS ALBUM RIGHT THIS MINUTE.
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He trails behind, huffing and puffing with each shuffling step through the sand. His Queen stops and waits for him now and then, while the other three plow ahead as if they've done this all their lives. Which, considering the date they told him after he emerged, they most likely have.
They reach the summit of the dune, the Dersite leader using a hand to shield his eyes while he scans the empty expanse. His Queen–though she is not really his Queen, not anymore, but what else is he supposed to address her as?–takes his hand and helps him up the last few yards of the steep slope.
"We could rest, if you need to," the Prospitian girl offers, but he shakes his head through his ragged breaths.
"I wouldn't want to be a burden," he says, just as their leader spots the landmark he was looking for and begins to climb down the dune with his pet flying faithfully behind. The girl nods reluctantly and disappears over the edge. He waves his Queen on, assuring her he'll be right behind, and soon she too vanishes behind the mountain of sand. The other Dersite squats over the artillery he insisted be brought with him, making sure each corner is secured to the sled beneath.
He walks to the edge, careful not to lose his balance. The desert stretches across all corners of the horizon, unbroken and unchallenged. It reminds him of the Battlefield, in a way, where some days he'd feel as if he could not remember an earth unmarked by shades of gray. But all the same, this planet surely has a beauty in its unyielding sands and bright sun.
"Eh, I guess you could say that," the other Dersite answers him, and he realizes too late that he spoke his thoughts aloud. "I wouldn't mind a bit more shade, though. But we'll have plenty of that when we reach the oasis tonight."
The Dersite tightens one last rope with a satisfied yank and pushes it over the crest of the dune, watching it sail elegantly down the sandy slope. He beings to descend himself, sliding in stops and starts.
"Try not to dawdle, your Highness!" the Dersite calls, though he is not really a King, not anymore.
- Homestuck: Natural Anthem