The Unfortunate Cost of Loss

March 6, 2017
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The man in the dark hood loomed over her, wielding the long, shiny fragment of steel. She knelt before him with the face of stone. As everyone watched, the mysterious man brought the sword above his head. All that could be heard were the sobs from loved ones. She waited for the sharp sword to cut through her like a knife through butter. All she wanted was for it all to end. No more pain. No more suffering. But that moment never came. She picked up her head, eyes full of questions. As she stared at the man, there was a deafening moan. The village doors opened, but not a soul stepped out.


¨Please. Please just do it,¨ she cried.


¨DO IT!¨, she screamed, but it never came.


The lady looked back just as the executioner hit the cold, damp grass with three arrows sticking out of his broad chest. She took a glance to her right, then left. Nobody out of the ordinary was in view.. Surely she would be next, but the question was when. The shiny segments of rock tied to the slick, smooth shaft of wood would never come again.


She contemplated staying down for cover, but she was sure the kings guards will soon be there to bring her back to the bitter, murky, foul dungeon. She rose to her feet with much caution. She jolted toward the opened doors. She was so close that she could taste the freedom. One. More. Step. But she would never make it. The guards had closed the doors. A deafening scream came from behind. She glanced at what was causing the commotion. The king was holding onto a shiny blade with beautiful patterns engraved into the wooden handle. In the other hand, her beloved daughter. The king wore a blank expression. Terror struck the woman as she realized that if she didn't give herself up, he would happily kill her daughter, and eventually her. Tears of fear began to conquer her eyes. She knew that this was the last time she would ever see her daughter.


She slowly moved forward. Each step bringing her closer and closer to the villainous man. She wished it was just another one of her nightmares, but she knew it wasn't. This was too real. She peered over to the small, jagged hole in the stone wall. If she could make it to the king, her daughter might have a chance to make it to the hole, and to make it to freedom. She lept towards the king, but she didn’t get there in time. The once shiny blade was now covered with blood of her daughter. When she hit the ground, the women jumped up to save her daughter. The guards attempted to grab her arms, but they were unsuccessful.


Her daughter's lifeless body lay dormant in her lap. The court lay silent as the villagers gazed in disbelief. The lady looked into her daughter’s eyes, rejection the fact that she would never see her again. Never touch her again. She was gone.


The guards tried to obtain her, but she fought back. She hit one of them in the face with a rock, and the other backed away. Dropping the rock, the lady took off towards the hole. She knew that she would never make it, but she had to atleast try. When reaching the hole, she peered behind her. Nobody was after her. Sticking one leg through the hole, then the other, she slithered out through the hole.


All that could be seen was trees. The pine forest was covered in a dark green. It was such a beautiful sight to be seen. She twisted and turned through the evergoing trees, looking for the place that had had harbored her for many many years. The tiny shack was far away, but she had no clue how far.


  The sun had begun to set, and she knew there would be search parties out to look for her. It had always been that way. ll When someone escaped, the king would not stop until the escapee was dead. After hours of walking and close observations, she came upon the tiny, crudely built shack. With holes in the ceiling and walls, and the dirt floor, it was one of the last places anybody would want to be, but it was the only safehaven for the lady.


The crunch of broken twigs came first, then the sound of mean, vicious dogs. As the sounds seemed to grow closer and closer, she became more and more frightened. The guards would come upon her any minute now, and she had nowhere to go.


She then noticed that there was a fraction of the wall missing. It wasn’t a large portion, but it was big enough. Like she had done earlier, she crawled over to the hole without hesitation, and snaked her way through the wall.


On the other side of the hut, the breaking of twigs and the snarling intensified. There was no chance of making it out alive, but she never gave up hope. She climbed into the bushes, making sure to camouflage every inch of her body. With the thin branches.


On the other side of the small, raunchy lean-to, the door opened. The dogs sniffed and sniffed every square inch of the shack. Any minute they would find the missing part of the wall. They were so close that she could hear their deep breaths, but before they had time to get a good look, one of the dogs took of. At first she thought it was going after her, but later she saw it chasing a rabbit around in circles. She was safe, but only for now.


Once the shouts of guards could no longer be heard, she took off. She didn’t know who she was going to run into, where she was going, or what she would do when she got there, but none of that mattered. Right now, her only priority was getting as far away as possible.  


“Stop!”, came from behind her.


At that moment, she knew that her life had came to an end. These were her final moments.
When she turned around, she noticed there wasn’t anybody behind her. She searched with her eyes through the heavily wooded forest, but there wasn’t a soul in sight.


With a hint of fear in her voice, the lady screamed, “WHO ARE YOU?!”.


A loud thud came from behind, and the lady fearfully turned her body around. Standing behind her was a tall dark figure. The figure began to move closer, but with every step the unknown figure took forward, she took three steps back. She had no clue what the person wanted, and she never intended to find out. She broke out into a full out sprint.


In the midst of her running, something caught her foot. She went tumbling to the ground, scraping up her hands, arms, legs and face. All of which began to bleed, but that was the least of her worries. The dark figure was still approaching. Paralyzed by fear, she couldn’t get up. She couldn’t think straight, so she laid on the soft, damp ground, awaiting her fate. As the figure became more visible, she began to squirm around, not wanting to find out who it was. But right as the figure was within an arm's length away, she gripped a large, heavy log. The man bent over, and in one swift motion, she knocked the man onto the pile of soggy leaves. There was no movement from the man.


Attached to the man’s back, there was a quiver full of arrows, and a long, sturdy bow. This was the man that killed the executioner, but why? She didn’t know this man. She’d never seen him in her whole life, yet he was willing to kill a man for her. None of what had happened the last day had made sense to her. Nothing had ever made sense to her. Why was everybody after her? Why was she set to be killed? Why were the guards and the strange man after her? With all of these questions flooding her brain, she didn’t know what else to do, so she sat next to the unconscious man, not knowing what her next move shall be.


Hours had passed and the lady was still sitting by the man. She had contemplated leaving him there, but for some odd reason, she stayed. She didn't know why she did. Why would she stay with a man that tried to kill her? Why? Every minute she stayed, she was closer and closer to being caught.


The crunching of leaves woke the lady from her slumber. She glanced towards where the man was. Nothing. There was no sign of the man.


“I’m sorry,” came from the opposite direction.


She tilted her head slightly, hoping to catch a glimpse of the person who said it, but nobody was within seeing distance.


The cold, sharp piece of flint pierced her body like a harpoon through water. A cold sensation drowned the lady. In the soft damp grass, she lay there, slowly bleeding out. A large blur stood in the way of the beautifully green trees. Those were the last things she would ever see.


Soon after, she saw her daughter. They were walking through a field of daisies. She was at peace now, not having to worry about being caught, for all she had done was take a simple apple from the old stand of fruit next to the village doors. It was all over.






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