Tusk: The Fire Guardians of Stonehenge

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Historical Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
There was a crunching sound of splintering bone and tearing of flesh, as Stone face’s head came away from his body in a shower of blood.
The Long fang let out a deep rumbling growl.

Submitted: July 19, 2019

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Submitted: July 19, 2019

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Tusk

The fire guardians of Stonehenge

 A Neolithic adventure

Hemlock was the tribal wise man, he was the mouthpiece for the gods, the keeper of the secrets, the secrets the gods whispered in his ears, ears that were covered by his mass of matted tousled black hair; he was more animal than man.

Hemlock reminded Tusk of those big woolly one horns that stomped about on the far northern plain, forever munching grass and farting and emptying out piles of stinking green mush from its big puckered shit hole.

Hemlock of course did not have a big horn growing out of his head, like those big eating, shitting creatures. But he did have a big nose and was always eating, and was as big and round as those one horns, and Tusk grinned at the thought that Hemlock also had a big puckered shit hole.

In fact Hemlock always got the choicest pieces of food that Tusk and his warriors brought back to the tribe from their hunting forays into the forest and plains.

After all, Hemlock was the wise man, he had to be kept fed, the gods had told him as much, and he had passed that message on to the hunter gatherers, like Tusk and skyflint, and they had to do as the gods said, lest the world would end, Hemlock had told them as much.

After all, Hemlock was the tribal Wise Man and mouthpiece for the gods!

 

*****

The house of Satu stood on the plain of Satu. It was a huge circle of megalithic grey granite stones and archways; it was where the tribesmen worshipped the great sky spirit.

Satu was the shining one who travelled across the sky above their heads. Satu warmed their skin and made the flowers and the berries on the thorn bushes grow, and the nuts hanging from the trees grow and the birds in the sky and the fishes in the streams grow.

Satu was the creator of their world, or at least that is what Hemlock told the tribes people, for it had been whispered in the ears of the Wise men of the tribe since the beginning of time, since Satu had first awakened.

The Wise men of old had told the tribesmen that when Satu wanders the sky and darkness comes, then the great fire must be lit in the house of Satu to guide the great creator spirit back to them.

It fell upon the fire guardians to keep vigil on the great beacon, during the time of darkness, to make sure it did not go out.

It was a perilous task, for there were many other spirits that were jealous of the veneration of Satu, and they would try to extinguish the fires, so that Satu would be lost in the sky and never return, for these spirits yearned for the tribes people to worship and venerate them, and none other were more jealous than, Unabatu.

*****

 Unabatu the night eye and sibling to Satu came out only during the times of darkness and shone down its cold deathly light.

Unabatu was a cruel and unforgiving Spirit worshipped by the cave dwellers to the south; they hunted the plains dwellers and took their heads for trophies, all in the name of Unabatu.

*****

The fire had been lit; it crackled as its leaping orange flames reached up into the night sky searching for Satu.

Tusk sat on a stone idly scratching his wiry beard and picking his nose. A flint headed spear was propped up against his stone seat. Tusk wore a vest made from the hide of a curly horn, they were beasts that roamed the plains in large herds munching on grass. They were dumb beasts with big fleshy udders hanging between their hind legs, which the tribesmen would drink their milk from.Tusk also wore a wolf fur kilt and wolf fur foot wrappings.

Unabatu was out, his pale grey face lit up the darkness as he watched the fires of Satu burning brightly below him.

Tusk snarled at the jealous spirit and then spat on the ground and continued to groom his beard, pulling out lice and popping them between his fingers.

Skyflint was standing to his right and was leaning on his spear and yawning, it was going to be another long vigil waiting for the return of Satu. He scratched at his buttocks and let out a fart.

Tusk looked up and twisted his face in disgust and threw a small stone at Skyflint, who just guffawed as he always did when he farted like those woolly one horns.

Tusk turned to his left, Stoneface sat with his legs crossed and hunched over, his heavy mammoth cloak was pulled over his head, he was sleeping as usual. Tusk growled deep in his throat and stormed over to him and gave him a hard kick.

Stoneface growled angrily as his grizzled face popped up from beneath his cloak.

Tusk leered down at him and pointed toward the wood pile with his spear and gave Stoneface another kick for good measure.

Stoneface pulled himself up and limped over to the pile and bent down to pick up a good sized log for the fire.

The beast struck like a flash of lightning.

Stoneface didn’t have time to defend himself as the big dark brown cat leaped out from behind the wood pile, landing on his chest, its weight crushed his ribs as its claws sank into his chest, and then its huge wide maw opened as it struck him, sinking its two long fangs into Stone face’s throat.

 There was a crunching sound of splintering bone and tearing of flesh, as Stoneface' head came away from his body in a shower of blood.

The Long fang let out a deep rumbling growl.

From out of the darkness they came, silent and predatory, hunched shapes. Their bodies were daubed in bone white mud, their heads were bald and shone like grimacing skulls in the light of Unabatu, they were cave dwellers, come to extinguish Satu’s guiding fire.

 

Tusk grabbed his hunting horn that hung from his waist belt and gave it three long bursts. The sound echoed around the stone circle and then Tusk bellowed his battle cry and threw his spear at one of the boneskin cave dwellers.

The flint headed spear hit the boneskin in the chest, there was a spray of crimson as the spear sliced through its flesh and stuck out a foot from its back.

Tusk grabbed his stone axe and ran over to the impaled attacker and slammed his axe into his head. The boneskin’s skull shattered, spraying its lumpy pink contents over the ground.

Tusk ripped his spear from the body and rounded on another white painted enemy.

*****

Skyflint ducked under an incoming club attack, the stone headed weapon, whooshed over his head as he spun around on his heels and drove his flint dagger deep into the thigh of his attacker.

The boneskin yelped and fell to one knee; Skyflint did not hesitate as he drew his razor sharp flint blade across the boneskin’s throat releasing a torrent of scarlet liquid from the deep slicing cut. The boneskin fell face down dead.

 

A shiver ran through Tusk’s body as a rumbling growl sounded behind him, he spun around bringing up his spear. The great cat crouched before him, its red stained fangs dripped as it snarled, ready to pounce.

The beast leaped into the air, its huge thick muscled legs reaching out toward him with those ripping claws extended, ready to tear him apart.

Tusk felt his guts tighten in fear as he dropped to one knee and held up his spear.

And then the cat yelped and writhed as it thudded to the ground only an arm’s length from him, with Skyflint’s spear sticking in its side.

Tusk bared his teeth and leaped up into the air and spun his spear around in his hands and brought it down hard, piercing through the thick skull of the great long tooth cat.

The mighty cat, shuddered, its orange eyes rolled in its head and its long pink rasping tongue stuck out of its mouth and then it expelled its last breath.

Tusk turned to Skyflint and grinned with relief, Skyflint raised a hand in acknowledgment and then his head was slaked from his shoulders with a stone axe weilded by the grinning boneskin that had crept up behind him.

Tusk snarled and levelled his spear, that white faced grinning cur was going to pay for that, and then something cracked loudly off Tusk’s head. The world began to spin as Tusk collapsed, stunned by the stone from a slingshot.

Tusk lay on the ground stunned, his head throbbed with pain; he could feel the trickle of blood running from his cracked head matting his hair.

The boneskins’ were now at the great fire, pulling logs off it and trying to extinguish it, and then his vision was filled with the grinning face of a white painted cave dweller.

 The boneskin licked his thick lips and raised his axe, ready to take Tusk’s head as a trophy for Unabatu.

Tusk snarled up at the grimacing white face, and then as the axe began its descent, a flint spear head erupted through the boneskin’s mouth like a serpent’s tongue, spewing a torrent of blood with it.

The boneskin collapsed on top of him, Tusk sighed with relief and then his world went black.

 

*****

Tusk’s eyes flickered open, his vision was blurred. He reached up and felt his head and groaned. He had a large lump on the back of his head, and it was hurting. His hair was stuck together and matted with dried blood.

As his vision sharpened he recognised his surrounding, he was in his lodge, a round structure with a wooden framework with mammoth hides stretched over it.

He looked around for his mate, Snow Elk, she was not there. Tusk pulled himself up and groaned. He swept the wolf hide flap open with his muscular arm and stepped outside.

There were perhaps twenty lodges scattered about the plain, all was silent, there were no signs of any of his fellow tribes people, the place was deserted.

And then Tusk’s gut tightened as he looked up into the strangely dim grey sky.

Satu had been blotted out by the face of Unabatu!

Instead of Satu’s bright burning light, there was just a round black orb obscuring Satu’s warm gaze. Unabatu was challenging Satu for dominance of the sky.

Tusk instinctively knew where his tribes’ people were. He grabbed his stone club and ran toward the huge stone circle on the great plain.

 

*****

Hemlock, the mouthpiece of the great spirits stood over a stone altar, his flabby arms wobbled as he waved them over the sacrifice to Satu.

Hemlock was wearing an ornate headdress made from the skull of a great Long tooth cat, its fangs curved down the sides of Hemlock’s chubby face.

His bare torso was painted yellow to represent the light of Satu, he wore a skirt made from the hide of the Long Tooth, with a jangling belt of rib bones.

Hemlock looked down at the sacrifice. She was naked and had been daubed in the yellow paint; she wore a garland of flowers around her head. Her eyes were closed and she slept soundly, for she had been given a herbal drink made by Hemlock.

Hemlock dipped the razor point of his knife into a clay pot of red paste and began to draw the mystical symbols known only to the wise men on her naked flesh. He circled her small breasts and then drew a line down to her dark bushy groin and circled that too. He then positioned the Knife over her heart and drew a circle around it.

 

The tribes’ people had fallen to their knees and were chanting and praying to Satu, lending him their strength in his struggle with Unabatu above their heads. Their voices echoed around the great stone circle.

 

Tusk entered the house of Satu and his eyes opened wide in shock, for his mate, Snow Elk lay on the offering table. Hemlock raised his arms ready to plunge the knife into her chest and cut out her heart.

Tusk roared like a wild beast. The tribes’ people stopped their chanting and looked up in shock, as Tusk ran across the circle and leaped up over the altar brandishing his stone club in both hands. The club descended; there was a loud crunching sound and a gurgle.

Hemlock fell backwards with the rounded head of the stone club imbedded in his face.

Tusk snarled and pulled the club free, which made a slurping sound. Hemlock’s face had been destroyed, only his wide staring eyes bulged from that red pulpy mess.

Tusk grinned at the round puckered hole he had made in Hemlock’s fat face, for it reminded him of those puckered one horn shit holes.

Tusk was breathing heavily, as he turned to the wide eyed shocked crowd.

He had killed the wise man of the tribe and denied Satu his sacrifice. He had doomed them all to a life of darkness under the black stare of Unabatu. Some of them began to wail in despair, others began to pull out chunks of their own hair.  

Tusk then turned back to Hemlock’s rotund dead body and knelt down and cut out his heart with violent ripping slashes of his blade.

The crowd cried out and screeched, they were thrown into panic, they didn’t know what to do, some of them began to run away back to their village, screaming as they went.

Some of the men scowled and reached for their weapons, intent on finishing what Hemlock had started, Satu demanded a sacrifice, and they had to act fast, before the world ended.

Tusk jumped up onto the stone altar and held up Hemlock’s red dripping heart above his head and roared his battle cry.

A shaft of yellow light shone down from the grey sky above bathing Tusk in its warmth.

The warriors came to a stop and looked up. Unabatu was running away across the sky as Satu once more shone down upon their heads, bright and shinning.

The warriors exchanged confused glances, and then one of them dropped his axe and fell to his knees and raised his arms skyward and began to shout out joyously.

The rest of the warriors followed their tribesmen and fell to their knees and turned to Tusk, who had been touched by the light of Satu.

They threw up their arms and began to rejoice for they had been given a sign by Satu, he had chosen the next Wise man of their tribe and his name was, Tusk.

 

The End

 


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