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David M Humphrey Sr

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· Deathstalker... Part Five

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· Deathstalker...


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Deathstalker... Part Six
By David M Humphrey Sr
Posted: Saturday, February 10, 2007
Last edited: Friday, October 26, 2012
This short story was "not rated" by the Author.

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Recent stories by David M Humphrey Sr
· Hooves... Chapter One
· Hooves... Chapter Two
· Hooves... Chapter Three
· Deathstalker... Part Five
· Deathstalker...Part Four
· Deathstalker... Part Two
· Deathstalker... Part Three
           >> View all 9
The Tale Continues...

He had rode with a fury that rivaled that of the howling Fall winds around him. He must put as much distance between himself and the cabin as quickly and as urgently as possible. It hurt too much…

And the letter—well, some day he would read it. But as for now, sanity was a leaf in the wind that it took all his strength to hang onto…

In the mean time he must vent the volcano of anger within him. It could not be stopped. It could not be forgiven. It must be vetted.

Totally.

Perhaps then, he could return to sanity…

 

It was not until 12 months and seven moons later that he had come to himself.

Somewhat…

Atleast, he stopped long enough to ponder what he’d done…


 

In the midst of a windstorm, he drove Thunder hard, up to the cracked and chipped doors of The 12 Boars Inn…

The wind had whipped his clothes with a particular vengeance as he stood for a moment in the tavern’s door. It was as if the Elementals knew his mission and pulled at him to restrain him, to keep him from another act of pure hate and malice.

But nothing could stop him. Nothing could stand before his need for vengeance…

Not even a simple thing like, ‘sanity’…


 

He stepped into the darkened and smoky tavern and the wind sucked the door closed behind him. The door slammed with a fury as if to seal him in. Dark and brooding eyes stared at him from the shadows all across the room, but he was oblivious to them and the many looks of dark suspicion.

“I know him!” whispered one bearded face fiercely to another with a scar, in the rear of the smoky room. “That’s the one they call Xalzal-Tak, The Killing-Demon. They say he’s like death itself with that sword. Unstoppable and merciless,” he’d said and held his breath reverently as they both watched the somber faced stranger lay the slender, black, gold-studded weapon upon the table where he seated himself.

“Bah, he doesn’t look that tough to me”, uttered Scar, gulping down a mouthful of hot grog.

“Neither does a Kirselian Spider, but their bite can kill a Quarter horse in seconds. Look at his eyes… They’re killer’s eyes.” He then leaned across the table to Scar and talked in even quieter tones, unsure if the stranger’s ears were as good as his sword arm.

“Legend says he was born a Prince in some far country but was expelled from his own country by a jealous brother. He migrated to Quillmar and married a beautiful peasant girl there. The land was invaded by the Tactrians and the Illmarians, but he helped drive them out—but at the cost of his wife, newborn son, and own blood-brother… It’s said that he travels the country tracking down every surviving member of that murderous army to exact his own personal justice.”

Whaaaat??” Said his scar-faced, one-eyed friend incredulous, “He tracks down a whole army!”

“Yes…” came the whispered reply, “One man at a time…”

“A whole army! He must be mad!”

“Yes…”said the bearded one, “…Quite. There were ten thousand Tactrian and Illmarian survivors from that war. Now, there are nine hundred…”

What!!?? Impossible!!! Bakdav! Surely you lie or jest with me! That would be nothing short of amazing, no man could do that!”

“I lie not…” Said Bakdav, the Bearded One. “Neither do I jest of such things. As the Sage of Uldom once remarked, ‘There is nothing more dangerous than a madman on a mission…’.”

Aye…” agreed Dar, the Scarred One, eyeing the stranger with new respect…

 

After a few hours the stranger rose suddenly and staggered toward the door. He seemed to stumble, not so much from the strength of the grog, but rather from an unseen weight that draped across his slim shoulders…

“I can imagine how much ‘pain’ he must be in…” said the Bearded One

“Aye…” was all his friend would say…

The Stranger turned up his cloak before once again facing the biting wind, paused a moment before pushing through the weather-beaten door and said under his breath, barely above a whisper,

“No…you can’t…”

           Then he was through the door and climbed aboard Thunder and headed for Brisro Road and his next ‘appointment’…

 

           It took him nearly an hour to kill the ex-Tactrian Soldier. Much longer than it had any other man of that merciless army.

But all in all, still it had done him no good… All the killing. All the revenge for his family. He was still just as lonely. Still just as empty. Still just as miserable, as he had been the moment Samsa and Ola had told him about—…

Even killing his enemies by the droves, had not helped…

It was gone now—all gone. The urgency, the fury, the wrath—he could feel it like the embers of a raging forest fire, slowly dying. Slowly fading away, leaving him like clouds of steaming rising upward in a night time sky…

The fury of it had burned itself out. The raging flames that drove him to exact such terrible vengeance upon his enemies was gone. Having consumed itself upon the man at Brisro Road…the last man that he had killed. All he had left now, were the myriads of scars...

The flames of fury doused by the cold water of sobriety, as the man’s wife had tugged at his sword arm as he finished his dastardly deed, the blood from the man’s body spraying his breeks and the woman’s face.

It was what had happened afterward that bothered him the most…

 

It was something about the look of paralysis and shock that consumed the woman as she slumped to the ground, shocked with the realization that her husband and the father of her children was now dead…

It was something about that moment, as he turned to look at her, heaving himself from the floor with effort, for the man had been no weak swordsman. She sat looking up at him.


 

          Her eyes—It had been the look of hopelessness in her eyes. All love, all life, all joy, all dreams, all energy, had left her—he saw it when it fled, with his last killing sword stroke.

She sat still and lifeless from that moment—unable to move. He shivered as her eyes locked his, then he quickly jerked them away.

        Her eyes had become as bottomless and hopeless as Hell itself, he guessed, as much as his own.

        He turned to leave, exhausted and blood-covered.

        Suddenly, she clung to him, her eyes locked on the mangled body of her husband and—without looking up, she’d said.

       “Kill me too…Please, kill me too?” Pleading…

        He struggled to be free from her. But she held him fast with the same death-grip that all those who feel their grip on sanity slipping away have—unbreakable. .

        She clung to him, crab-like, she was like some dead thing, seeking to draw life—or death—from him, an emotional leech void of anything else. By her shear despair, she weighed him down.

         She was an octopus. As he pulled one limb away, another seemed to stick to him. And with such a tenacious grip, it was as if despair itself were some type of adhesive that she possessed in dreadful quantities and she used to stick to him…

        Finally, he managed to thrust her away and ran for his horse.

       He, running from a woman!

       He jumped Thunder and fled for his life.

      That’s the day his quest for personal and vengeful killing had stopped.

       Not because his thirst for vengeance had been entirely filled—but, but, because of her eyes.

       Her haunting, dead, and angst filled eyes…


 

        Because for the very first time, in ‘them’, in her eyes, he had seen something that had terrified him…

He had seen an inner picture of,

Himself

 
 
 

 

Reader Reviews for "Deathstalker... Part Six"


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Reviewed by Errr oooo 6/15/2007
Waiting for more....


Books by
David M Humphrey Sr



Dark Things...

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Confessions of a Guardian Angel...

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Amazon, more..




My Secret Heart...

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Amazon, Barnes & Noble, more..




The Warrior's Agenda Combat Study Guide

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Amazon, Barnes & Noble, more..



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