Dealing Death

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic
Keera has an assassin on her tail... will she survive?

Submitted: March 03, 2009

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Submitted: March 03, 2009

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Dealing Death
The day of the Se’ Demorian competition was today. Keera couldn’t wait! She was climbing the social and career ladders, gaining more respect in the elven community. With a few more wins, she would be the best in the town of Se’ Demori. Even though she was a female elf, she was better than any male elf around. Why let the prejudice ones win? There was no reason for it, and Keera planned to keep it that way.
* * * * * * * * * *
In the weeks that followed his return to the castle, he couldn’t stop thinking about her. What was it about her that enchanted him so deeply? Was it that kiss? That was part of it; he would admit that much. His love for her was a war that wouldn’t end; he couldn’t decide between her and his kingdom.

Jakel, the prince who journeyed with Zak weeks before, wouldn’t leave Yalariel, the elf kingdom, to his younger sister, Mashumi, he just couldn’t allow that. It wasn’t that long after the rescue of Keera, and already Jakel felt like a piece of paper being torn.

When he had entered the dining hall that morning, he couldn’t help but notice that his whole family wasn’t speaking to one another, which, as a fact, wasn’t a constant thing. Amazed by the silence, Jakel took his seat next to his sister and ate hungrily.
* * * * * * * * * *
With a sudden burst of energy, Keera got up from the ground and ran at her opponent. This time she wouldn’t let Avatrius strike her off guard. Avatrius was a Ta’ Marilian, and one of Sa’ Mari’s old suitors. Keera wouldn’t let him beat her, because she knew he was after her mother again. He wouldn’t know Sa’ Mari was married, or had a child.

Avatrius had been sent to the elf prison, Zelnex, for verbal assault on Artemis the day he came to ask for Sa’ Mari’s hand. Sa’ Mari and Artemis had only told Keera that much, but she knew it had gone farther.

“I’ll get him, and I’ll make sure he doesn’t get anywhere near my mother, father, or sister,” Keera muttered.
* * * * * * * * * *
Zak watched hiswife from the edge of the arena. She advanced towards Avatrius with a look of pure hatred. Zak would remind himself to ask her about it later. Zak sighed.

“When is this going to end? Keera and I were supposed to go to the beach after her match, but it’s taking her longer than she said. Too bad we would have to take her pesky little sister Ta’Lia with us,” Zak mumbled.

Just then a clang of steel on steel reverberated across the arena, and the crowd started cheering. Zak brought his head up, but couldn’t keep his mouth from dropping.
* * * * * * * * * *
Keera circled around Avatrius, her sword and scimitar twirling and dancing. Avatrius had deep gashes on his arms, legs and in between the two chest plates he wore for two-thirds of his armor. The only place left unscathed was his face, but not for long. If she executed one of the death blows, she could be able to go right through his helm and to the back of his head. But if he died, Keera would be sent to Zelnex.

“I better end this quickly,” Keera muttered, “it looks like Ta’Lia isn’t enjoying this as much anymore.”

Avatrius had fallen to the ground from the repetitive attacks on his body. Keera approached with caution, blades still drawn. Avatrius was bleeding profusely, but strangely, he still had a sly grin on his face. Keera advanced slowly, and stopped, towering over Avatrius’s partially mangled body. Out of nowhere, Avatrius grabbed Keera by the neck.

“I know who you are, where you live, and who you’re close to. How about you throw the match and I won’t kill you. I’ll also throw in this,” he whispered.

He took out a dragon carved out of pearl from his pocket. Even though he didn’t know it, that carving was the relic prince Jakel was looking for. On an assignment for the prison, Avatrius had gone to the fire dragon’s lair. Sparkfire was known well throughout Yalariel, and in killing the dragon, Avatrius was awarded one item from the spoils and his freedom.

“What do you say, half-elf?”

“No! Why should I trust you now, or ever? I know who you are. You are a disgrace to the elven blood line!” Keera exclaimed.
Sensing that the fight was about to continue, Avatrius jumped up into a defensive stance. Double cutlasses in hand, he stood at the ready. Thinking Keera would come at his legs, he held his weapons low.

Taking a running start, sheathing her weapons in the process, she readied her jump. Coming to about two feet away from Avatrius, Keera leaped into the air. Executing a perfect roundhouse kick, Keera landed softly behind the yowling Avatrius. She turned to see his hands and face full of blood. She figured she broke his nose, which is what she planned.

“Well, that should do it. He couldn’t be able to fight after that,” Keera murmured.

The master of ceremonies was heading in her direction. He arrived next to Keera, and in a dramatic way, one full of suspense, he announced Keera the victor. During the long time of cheers, Keera thought about what Avatrius had said. Even though she didn’t know it, Avatrius had been lying about almost everything. He didn’t know anything about Keera, besides what other contenders had told him. He wasn’t kidding about killing her if she didn’t throw the match, but after her stunning performance, Keera doubted he would come after her.

Instantly remembering where she was supposed to be, she took the trophy and ran to the gate. Meeting Zak, Ta’Lia, and her parents, they rode to the beach on their horses.
* * * * * * * * * *
Wondering where they were going, Avatrius decided to follow Keera. He thought he had seen Sa’ Mari and Artemis, the Diagabletha. If he found the Diagabletha, the non-elf scum Artemis, alone, he would make sure to kill him and take Sa’ Mari for his own. Stealthily following them, he watched them until nightfall.
* * * * * * * * * *
Finally deciding to go after her, Jakel packed the necessaries. The map he had this time was more accurate, and having asked his family’s wizard to find Keera’s location, he knew where he was headed. He went to the royal stable, saddled Sheera, and rode off into the night.
* * * * * * * * * *
Four days has passed since the match, and Zak had been hearing rumors that the prince had appeared in the outskirts of Ka’ Liena and Se’ Demori. He had a major problem with this, and if he saw Jakel, he would make sure to kill him.

Today Zak and Keera were meeting to go on a special assignment for the Maegther Duma. The goblin raids had been increasing near Se’ Demori, and they wanted Zak and Keera, the best blade wielders in the Maegther Duma, to be the ones to destroy the goblins.

Reaching their destination, they prepared a surprise attack.
* * * * * * * * * *
Avatrius had followed the pair, thinking this the best place to make Keera’s death look like an accident. He would wait for the heat of the battle, sneak up behind the enemy, Keera, and stab her. Hiding in the bushes, he had no idea Keera had known he was there.
* * * * * * * * * *
Hearing the commotion from afar, Jakel started in the direction of the upcoming battle. Stopping at the edge of the encampment, he watched as Keera and Zak were losing their lead. Knowing if he didn’t step in, the love of his life would die. Making sure the cowl of his cloak was covering his face, Jakel jumped into the fray.
* * * * * * * * * *
“Tulkoranesh,” Zak and Keera whispered in unison.

Totally surrounded, they didn’t see the masked stranger kill five of the goblin group.

“By the gods!” Keera exclaimed, “Who is that?”

“I don’t know, but thank god he’s here,” Zak replied.

Now seeing an avenue for success, the two elves fought with newfound spirit.
* * * * * * * * * *
“I’m losing my chance,” Avatrius told himself. Knowing his window of opportunity was closing rapidly; he jumped behind a small group of goblins and stabbed them in their skulls. Making his way to the obnoxious she-elf, Avatrius carefully thought out his diabolical plan. With the goblins gone, the way was clear for Avatrius to execute his plan.
With one cutlass above Keera’s head and the other parallel with her neck, Avatrius was poised to strike.
* * * * * * * * * *
Eliminating the last of the goblin troupe, Zak turned around when he heard unusual footfalls coming up behind Keera. Spotting Keera’s would-be assassin, Zak called out to her.

“Keera! Behind you!”

Pivoting on the tip of her toes, she turned to see Avatrius with his cutlasses in a perfect position to deal out death.

“Alright, you win. Take my life if you will, but you’ll never find her.”

“Her? How did you know about that?”

"I know people, but I still won’t tell you where she is.”

Enraged by this one’s riddles, Avatrius lunged, looking forward to Keera’s death.
* * * * * * * * * *
Both Zak and the disguised prince ran at the would-be assassin, in the hope that they could save Keera. Still confused as to whom the stranger was, Zak turned and tried to see past the cowl. Failing to see any distinct features, he watched the hidden one’s movements. Recognizing some familiarity, Zak tried to connect it with a person. Then, it all fell into place.

“Jakel, show yourself! There’s no point in hiding from me!” Zak roared.

Suddenly remembering their last adventure, Zak spun to see how Keera was faring. Not yet dead, she still didn’t have the upper hand. Jumping behind Avatrius, Zak blocked the path while Jakel attacked from the side so Avatrius couldn’t focus on one elf.
Feeling useless, Zak attacked from behind. With all three elves attacking, Avatrius knew he would die.

“Both of you leave him to me! He’s mine!” Keera bellowed.

Leaving the heavily muscled elf to Keera, the two males acted as an audience at a normal sparring match. Knowing her skill, they didn’t doubt she would kill the elf.
Left jab, right swing, turn, cross slash, jump, roll, double stab, Keera thought. It was the same maneuver Zak used against her.
Avatrius couldn’t carry on. With all his lifeblood spurting from his major arteries, he couldn’t possibly live. Lying on the ground, he gave Keera a look of pure malice.

“I will come back to kill you, someway, somehow.”

And with that, he lay dead in the dirt, blood mixing with sand to make mud.

“Well, that was some fine swordsmanship there, my lady,” Jakel stated smoothly.

Striding towards Keera and the dead elf, Jakel knew what would happen.

“What are you doing Jakel? I thought I told you to stay away from her.”

“I wasn’t, all I did was compliment and thank her for saving us. And there’s something I’ve been looking for, and I heard this oaf has it.”
Bending down, Jakel searched Avatrius’s pockets.

“Aha, here it is.”

Producing the dragon carving, Keera gasped.

“He offered me that if I lost on purpose to him in our sparring match!”

“This dragon is my family’s heirloom, and now I plan to return it.”
No one replied, because if they did, he would never leave.

“Well, I guess this is goodbye again Zak. Have a nice life.”

With that said the prince jumped onto Sheera and started his long journey back to Yalariel.

“Finally he’s gone,” Zak said, “I thought he would never leave. But you know Keera; it was reckless of you to fight that elf by yourself.”

“I know, but he wanted to know where my mother was, and I would never tell him. It was my burden to bear,” Keera replied.

“Well, you should have told me, I’ll always be there for you.”

“Oh, Zak…”

She stepped up to him and kissed him on the cheek. Lighting the fires of love in his body, he hugged her and held her closely; tightly.

“Ouch, Zak you’re hurting me.”

“Sorry, but I don’t ever want to let you go.”

Standing in the middle of the carnage and gore, they stayed like that, hugging and kissing, not leaving each other’s side.


© Copyright 2020 Alexis Rhodes. All rights reserved.

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