Wednesday, November 02, 2005

A New Chapter

Chapter Two: A Dying Breathe

     Rebellious Child of Fear clutched his shield tight as he braced himself loosely for the blow he knew would strike hard enough to lift him off the ground as though he were only a pebble in its path.  He was not disappointed by the strike that came his arms shuddered despite their looseness and his body seemed to lose all its weight as the soles of his feet separated from the ground with a remarkable quickness. His shield smashed into his chest, the hammer behind it carrying him off and slinging him with ease into the far wall of the large room, knocking a table behind him and sending it spinning away before his shoulders struck the wall, which was, curiously, strong enough to withstand his crash.
     “Abba’Lien, I will tear your name off your back!”
     The giant rushed the wall, each crashing step resounding with metallic ring. The Abba’Lien’s vision blurred red around the edges and flickered with spots as he dropped to the ground and rolled to the left, stumbling as he stood up again backing away. He had been hit hard and did not feel that there was any length of time long enough to recover from that blow. His right arm felt separated from his shoulder and the pain was unbearable. The wall did not stand up so well against the hammer, though still better than the Child had, a spider web of cracks spread outward from behind where he had been standing a second before the sledge struck full force. Running had failed, and had been an unfitting resolution in the first place for the man who rebelled against all fear.
     No retort came from his lips as he continued to weave and roll, his whole body shuddering with pain and threatening unconsciousness with every pressure connecting against his bad shoulder. The next two blows followed through the spaces he had left with great haste, striking tables and shattering them even as flew away; toppling other identical tables out of their way as they did.
The Abba’Lien was backed against the cylindrical room build in the center of the cavernous space and nimbly rolled over the countertop at the edge of it, pulling down behind him a steel sliding door, closing the window as he moved through. It was bent inward tearing and contorting itself out of its socket before he even hit the floor. His vision left him and he screamed as he clutched at his shoulder. Like the youngest child he choked for breathe and tears poured from his eyes. He kicked backward pushing away from the counter as the enraged warrior smashed down his hammer, ripping the counter from the floor and shattering the bricks that supported it.
Rolling away onto his good arm and regaining what little energy he could, Child kicked up to his feet and ran through the tunnel of the tiny enclosed space, finding a door and running through, slamming it shut behind him.
His pursuer smashed his way through the wall with little effort. His full body armor shimmered in the dim light of the tiny windows high above. He laughed as he worked feeling stronger with each crashing impact of his weapon against a new wall as he tore through the inner ring, where the Abba’Lien had hidden. Nothing slowed his impossibly strong, and precise strikes.
“Are you ready to die, Abba’Lien?”
A wind from the nearby wall caused his cape of names to billow inward around that terrifying metal casing. It took a minute to clear his way through the cramped room smashing bits out of the way, crashing his hammer into the ceiling and smashing the ventilation pipes to the side, pinching them closed. Counters, stoves, cabinets, steel tables bolted to the ground all ripped like so many flecks of paper as he pushed them aside carefully, savoring his approach and his victim’s helplessness. The air seemed to thicken and smell of victory.
Rebellious Child of Fear looked up, a look of lucidness returning to his face as a rancid stench filled his nostrils. A look of recognition and mischief filled his blood-blinded eyes. He reached into his pouch, not even seeing the hammer swing coming and struck the floor the instant that it broke his body, a single spark flying. It was enough of a spark all the same; as the hammer smashed into his body, breaking him, fire erupted in the room exploding outward and exponentially multiplying the damage the assailant had caused, sending even the heavy suit of armor crashing to the ground outside the cylinder room.
Consciousness faded from the burning body of the Rebellious Child of Fear, and his last breath was filled with the acrid smell of his own smoldering flesh before he passed away. The armored tribesman lay in darkness as the light faded from the room with the setting sun. His cape of names burned away and the armor he wore pierced in many places with debris and in other places glowing red hot and cooking bits of the occupant in his sleep. Injured though he was, he did live, his armor also cooled, and in the darkest of the night, wake and crawl away.
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