At Rest

I rested, leaning on the column and wall behind me.

Heavy footsteps thundered in the palace. Foreign voices shouted. Hoarse. Fearful. Desperate.

I had bathed, attended to my most grievous wounds, and fully rearmed, completely aware that the battle had not gone as we expected. By treachery and sorcery, we found ourselves outnumbered 1000 to one. My warrior brothers and sisters stood defiantly and only died after inflicting huge devastation to the northern demon beast and its fanatical minions. Blood ran in rivers. Rivers turned into oceans.

at restEnemy soldiers are racing up the palace staircase. Clanging, clumsy dull-witted servants of the beast. Only their numbers were superior to us. They were lost, tired, wounded, and driven only by the threat of slavery if they failed to obey their cold, white masters. Most of these soldiers would die soon, when they reached the top of the stairwell where I was guarding an empty royal chamber, enjoying perhaps my last mortal breaths. I loved the smooth, cold marble on my the bottom of my feet. I wished to see at least one more golden sunrise over the savanna. I wanted to enjoy a final hot, embrace with my wife; encourage my many sons and daughters to complete their studies.

The enemy saw me, hesitated, bunching up on the stairs and hastily shouted commands for more troops, perhaps archers with deadly poisoned arrows.

My musket was armed but I depended more on sharp, molded metal to teach these dogs a lesson that they would take to their graves and all the way back to the icy glaciers where they were spawned.

The shield I carried replaced the old battered one that I had to abandon in the throat of an invader; he was one of their esteemed, immortal, warrior gods. Strange, that he had bleated like a domestic goat when I slew him. I laughed as they surged forward.

–the end —