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Solitary Fighter

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“Willow,” my father had said, “We need you to make this journey. Not only because we want you to, but to free us from The Tyranny King.”
My mother, standing slightly behind my father, simply nodded, her eyes pleading for me to agree.
And that was how I got here, this barren wasteland.
Maybe that’s an over-statement. The land around me is very lush. The immense trees tower on either side of the road and I can here many different birds singing from within their hidden nests.
“Be warned,” My father had cautioned after I had, reluctantly agreed, “The king won’t just allow you to walk around the country searching for the few who can defeat him. You will need to defend yourself from his soldiers. Always be on the watch, no matter what.”
Following his advice, my hand rested on the pommel of my sword. The forested area I tread seemed peaceful, but my father’s warning stayed with me. I had no desire to die, not yet.
Abruptly, the sounds of the birds ceases, all is quiet.
Too quiet for my tastes; I know that something is coming, but whether it is an animal or human I don’t know.
Pain, sharp and hot, ignites in my thigh and I look down to see a short arrow shaft protruding from the thick fleshy part. It’s a painful wound and also an inconvenient one. Whenever I try to walk, fresh pain lashes up and down my leg and blood flows swiftly.
My attackers come into view, there are 6. I’m severely outnumbered.
How can I survive this? 6 against 1!
My parents! Did they want me killed?
No, a cool, calm part of me answers my frantic questions. My parents only wanted a better future. They wouldn’t have sent me if they didn’t think I could survive.
This reassuring thought seems to build in me like fire; burning from the tips of my toes to my fingertips and it helped me ignore the pain as I stepped forward to meet my attackers.
One of the fighters moves ahead of the rest. His sword, like lightning, rises as if to smite my head from my shoulders. But I am too quick and before the soldier can react my sword is drawn.
I jump to the side, swinging my sword and it catches him in the shoulder. He drops is weapon, falling to the ground in agony and I end his suffering with a single swipe.
The others were upon me then.
I do not remember what moves I or they performed as we battled it out, my conscious mind only caught up after the last of the men fell at my feet.
I stumbled a few steps away before collapsing against a gnarled tree. I bind my wounds tightly and allow myself a few minutes recuperation.
It was not long before I forced myself to my feet and continued on my way, leaving the bodies. Because the sooner I finished the sooner I could go home.





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