Katanas – my own fucking Katanas.
He’d felt the cold scream of his own blades sliding into him, as the black clad and masked assassins held him down and slid the blades in.
They were silent. They were professionals.
They didn’t laugh or make a sound. He could hear their breath well enough, but they didn’t speak. Not until they stood him up, and watched him clench his jaw, which was just about all he could do.
One of them leaned in and whispered in his ear, “Lord Reznar sends his personal regards, and wishes you a swift and painful journey to hell.”
His body was rigid in its paralyzed state. What little movement there happened to be was his autonomic functions, and those were being erratic – heartbeat and lungs- his breath was coming pained and shallow, his heart was fluttering and spasming, trying hard to keep blood flowing when the volume kept going down. Too many leaks inside and out.
He looked out over the ledge where they had left him. He wasn’t sure if they intended him to die like a statue, or if they thought he would fall over the ledge and plunge into the ocean below. He could see the vast fog-covered waves spread before him. Small gusts of breeze brought the scent of the ocean and rocks below to his nostrils. Salt, brine, algae, water and the cool scents of the night.
And there was the moon, just over the horizon. It was huge and pale and beyond beautiful. He could almost reach out and touch it.
It looked THAT close.
Lahrs was bleeding to death, his own katanas used to murder him. He’d fought valiantly, but that dart with the paralytic had slowed him considerably. The fight had been so one sided after the first several minutes. At least he’d taken down one of the 3 assassins, and wounded the other two. Not that it mattered – the end results being this.
The 2 surviving assassins had pinned him down as the drug took effect – the counter agent Lahrs had taken had done too little, too late. At least in terms of the fight, and what the assassins had done before they had left him to die.
One Katana was jammed in from the right, and was sticking out the front of his left pectoral. How they had managed to miss skewering his heart amazed him, but he knew they’d knicked major blood vessels, and he was bleeding terribly inside, not to mention his left lung was filling with blood. His right arm – he couldn’t have lowered it on the right if he had wanted too, since they had rammed the other katana through the shoulder blade and ribs. It protruded out the front, probably through his other long on the far side? He wasn’t sure. He just knew that he had trouble breathing.
It wouldn’t matter soon.
The sound of his heartbeat was erratic, but still there. It was painful, those motions. “If I just keep my arms spread,” he thought.
It was only a short while.. A very short while.. Before the blackness would come and swallow him whole.
Heart flutter.. Lahrs got dizzy a moment, and nearly fell over. That would surely kill him before his lungs filled and drowned him. MUST STAY AWAKE, he thought desperately.
A wind stirred and he could feel his hair – that mass of wonderful white locks – being tugged and blown to the side. His body felt like it was swaying. He muttered under his breath, “NO!” and somehow, he didn’t topple. The wind was swirling around him as much as against him as he stood there, as if ready to take flight. The lengths of black sleeve that hung from his arms fluttered in the breeze, and he could just about swallow.
Things started to get darker, as he felt his heart beat start to slow. The moon was still very bright. It looked like it was getting bigger.
Thump thump Thump thump Thump thump..
Thump thump Thump Thump
He couldn’t hear his heartbeat any more.
The moon was even larger, filling the whole of his vision, with nothing but fog surrounding the outline of that magnificent orb. It was like the moon was going to swallow him whole.
But he didn’t want to die. Not with so much to do.
Not with so much to avenge.
“No,” he whispered, his lips bubbling with a wisp of bloody saliva.
And Lahrs heard a voice from right ahead. “Yes,” was what it said.
The moon was right there. Right in his face. It was the whole of his vision now.
“Time for you to come home, Lahrs. Just let go. It will all be ok.”
Lars gritted.. Thought he gritted… his teeth.
“Hush now, and come home. You have work to do.”
There was this distant feel of steel yanked out of flesh, and then freefall. And the feel of falling into light.
And Lahrs saw nothing but the moon before it all went black, except.. It never quite went that far.
Because the moonlight swallowed him whole when he fell from the cliff.
Then he was the moonlight.
Lars came back a month later, pale and beautiful and deadly. He wielded twin blades of pure moonlight made solid – these were his katanas. He was the assassin of the night, now.
He was a spirit of vengeance.
He was a spirit of retribution.
He paid a visit to the two assassins, Keno and Bakti, and ended them while they basked in a moonlight swim in a hot springs near to their master’s home.
Strangely enough, they died the same way he had been ended, except he let them drown in the hot springs.
And then it was Lord Reznar’s turn.
But that’s for another tale.
Story by: Dehrynn Shepherd
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