The Dragon Monk

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Action and Adventure  |  House: Booksie Classic
An Elven monks early morning meditations are disturbed by the ambush of an Orc party. Can his martial knowledge and prowess enable him to defeat his foes?

Submitted: December 15, 2016

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Submitted: December 15, 2016

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Tai Mo sat under the cherry blossom tree in a contemplative state. Legs crossed and hands in lap, he concentrated on removing all external distractions. Breathe in. the cool autumn air caressed his cheek. Breathe out. Breathe in. The bubbling brook carving its name into the mountain path. Breathe out. Breathe in. His traditional red and yellow robe wrapped his body from the morning cold. It signified his allegiance to the Hon’Shun monastery. Breathe out. Each morning he travelled the ten thousand steps needed to visit this sacred place in the Agama Mountains. Each morning he would divine with the Gods and contemplate their most improbable riddles.

 

Despite his advanced age, Tai Mo was as lean and muscular as any young elf. The only features that did show his age were the wrinkles on his skin, eroded by time, and a long wispy beard which he twirled between his fingers from time to time.

 

The petals of the cherry blossom tree descended to the ground, only deviating by the winds of fate that blew through the tree. Tai Mo felt an itch. Something wasn’t right. It scratched at his mind and body like an attention seeking puppy. He took a deep breath in and began to instinctively search his surroundings. His Elven ears twitched as his senses heightened. Someone or something was watching him from beyond the thick surrounding forest. A noise. No. Noises. Not that of a deer or mountain hare or snow fox, but of bipedal movement. To the untrained ear it would be forgiving to not be able to hear it above the sound of the wind or the bubbling brook. But, Tai Mo heard what one could only explain as a 700 pound Ooh-ah-ah, a native primate of the region, tearing its way through a porcelain workshop.

 

The movement stopped. Silence. Tai Mo held his breath. An arrow loosed from the dense forest only to stop in its path by Tai Mo’s index and middle finger; millimeters from his heart. Tai Mo opened his eyes like a steel trap. Five Orcs burst forth from the foliage. The Orcs had Tai Mo surrounded. The Orcs being distant cousins to the Elves, where similar in stature. Only where the Elves preferred agility and balance, the Orcs demanded strength and might. Each Orc carried with them an axe or a sword, and wore leather jerkins made from the skin of a Lithosaur. A cold-blooded reptilian whose brain was smaller and less sharp than its claws and teeth.

 

No sooner had Tai Mo been able to stand, they were upon him. Hacking and slashing, thin air met their attacks as Tai Mo elegantly dodged and weaved. Tai Mo had fought larger and smarter adversaries before but, if he had any sense of self satisfaction, he didn’t show it. He remembered his military practice. Use the enemy’s strength against him. Hack! Tai Mo dodged the swing of an axe and retaliated. The Orc reeled back in pain clutching his face as blood spurted from his broken nose. Slash! The sweeping arc of the sword left the Orc vulnerable and off balance of which Tai Mo took advantage. The Orc fell to the ground howling in pain, clutching his leg where bone protruded through his flesh. Tai Mo struggled to maintain his concentration as the remaining Orcs doubled their efforts. Each blow was met with a counter move. Beads of sweat formed on Tai Mo’s brow. His robes slashed and torn as lines of crimson ran down his body from a multitude of superficial cuts. The Orcs did not let up on their efforts. They lived for this kind of close combat fighting. Defeating their foe in glorious combat would bring them honour from their War Lord. Tai Mo disabled an Orc from its axe, and the soul from its body as the axe plummeted deep into the Orcs chest. The Orcs eyes rolled into the back of its head as it limped to the ground. An arrow whistled passed his ear and thudded into the tree behind him. Tai Mo was becoming complacent to his surroundings. The Orc archer gnashed his teeth at such luck. Taking advantage of the distraction an Orc thrust the pommel of his sword into the small of Tai Mo’s back. Tai Mo reeled forward in agony, tripping over the Orc with the broken leg. Not to be outdone, the Orc convulsed, shouting blasphemes in its native tongue. Tai Mo’s breath was heavy and labored. His lungs and muscles ached in desperation for respite. The Orcs were playing with him. Like a cat plays with a mouse before delivering the final blow. The largest Orc, most likely the leader, unsheathed his steel bastard sword from its scabbard, and raised it above his head with the intention of separating Tai Mo’s from his. The sword fell with all the power of an avalanche.

 

Seconds from death, Tai Mo swept his leg sending the Orc Leader on his back. On his feet, Tai Mo wasted no chance. He took in a large breath and made a series of hand gestures. The air began to cackle with energy as he channeled the Magicka around him, and the Chi within. Raising his hands into the sky, they burst into flames, sending a wave of scorching heat in all directions, singing leaves, flesh and hair. Tai Mo had mastered what few could do. Combining the arcane art of Magicka spells with the martial art known as Dragon style. Untouched by the flames Tai Mo felt imbued with renewed energy and vigor. His first victim, the Orc leader, burst into ash and dust upon impact of Tai Mo’s dragon fists. They danced through the air like two fiery comets performing their celestial dance. As the Orcs fled, they fell. With each strike flesh seared from bone. Their leather jerkins providing little insulation from the incinerating heat. The air was thick with the smell of smoke and charred bodies. Tai Mo assessed his surroundings and dissipated the magical energies. The flames extinguished as easily as they came.

 

The Orc archer frantically mounted a horse to make a quick getaway. A heel in its sides sent the horse at full gallop. Tai Mo performed a series of movements while whispering words in the ancient tongue. The horse immediately stopped in its tracks sending the rider flying from his position. The Orc made a sickening crunch as his neck connected with the great oak.

 

Tai Mo stroked the crest of the black beauty and smiled.  In the distance a bell echoed throughout the valley. The monastery was under attack. Tai Mo knew his students were more than capable of defending themselves. He taught them well. For now though, he sat back down under the cherry blossom tree and finished his morning meditation.

 


© Copyright 2017 Scott Selkirk. All rights reserved.

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