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Parry, parry, swing. The man before me fell to the floor. He did not stand back up, he stayed in place, bleeding out until he died.
The crowd before me cheered. I bowed to them, eventually the crowd died down. They let out two more Gladiators, it was up to me to fight them as I always had.
I was ready. I took my blade by the handle and prepared to fight my new enemies. They looked afraid, my enemies were obviously newbies. Stalking ever closer to me, they walked slowly, not wanting to make a mistake. I lunged forward then jumped back. Both of them raised their sword and tried to hit me. Only problem was that they were still ten feet away.
I ran forward, I changed my direction and began running to the right. The man on my right tried to slash at me but he missed. They both quickly turned around to face me. Then they charged, they were yelling, almost as if they were trying to scare me.
Once they were upon me I ran one of them through with my blade. He looked up at the sky, almost as if giving up his final prayer to the gods. I let go of my blade and rolled to the right when the other gladiator tried to slash his sword at me. He came running forward and blindly continued. I luckily dodged his every attack.
He now had full control of me. He was forcing me against a wall, I would eventually have no escape.
How could I have been so stupid? I guess the real question is, how had I ended up as a gladiator. But that was a completely different story.
I ran to the left and he got in my way. I ran to the right and he was there. I tried to trip him up by switching my direction multiple times but it never worked. I was up against the wall. He was preparing to finish me off.
He was waiting for the choice to be made. As I had expected the crowd was booing. He began to look around, so I kicked him. He fell back, I quickly grabbed his sword. Then waited for the choice to be made and then I finished him off.
The crowd began to cheer. I had cheated but they didn't care. All they cared about was seeing blood spilled. Even better if it was their favorite gladiator.
I was taken back into "The Cave", by two Roman guards, as the other gladiators liked to call it. The Cave was full of gladiators, slaves, and anything else that could kill or be killed. It was something the general population was aware of but they didn't really care.
When I entered I was greeted by the cheers of my fellow cell mates. It was a tradition to cheer for returning gladiators.
"Kane, how did the fight go?" I grunted as I passed Angelo's cell. Ever since I had become a favorite among the people Angelo had always tried to speak to me. I never satisfied him with a response.
As I journeyed deeper and deeper into The Cave, my guards never left my side. The Romans always feared a gladiator uprising. Why I would never know, they had thousands of highly trained soldiers. One of them could probably take on twenty of us. Still, I couldn't blame them for taking precautions.
Slaves outnumbered the non-slave population or at least thats what I had heard. The fact that slaves are everywhere also didn't help the Romans from fearing rebellion.
I eventually reached my cell, inside it was Michael, Richard, and Nicholas. We had been cell mates for almost a decade now. Usually we were all sent out for the gladiator fights but today they had sent me out alone to prepare the crowd for the big battle to come.
I heard the guards speaking of a huge battle. Fifty gladiators on each team, it would be brutal. I thanked the gods that none of my cell mates would be involved and neither would I.
After I was placed in my cell I promptly fell asleep. I needed the rest. Usually when I fell asleep I dreamed of blackness. The most calming dream I could ever have. No war and no peace, it was the most peaceful place that could ever exist. Today was different, I had a real dream. A dream with shapes colors, sounds, and feelings. It was spectacular. Only it wasn't a fictional dream. It was like reliving my youth. I was reliving the thoughts and the fears I had.
I was running through the city all alone. It was bustling, cold, and full of life. I loved it, it was like a completely different world everyday. Nothing was the same. The vendors changed, the people changed, the color of the entire world changed along with it. One week the town was filled with brightly dressed characters then the next filled with soldiers sent by the king. I knew that everything in the world was not right but I chose to ignore it.
A child should have no worries and to make that true I ignored them. In the dream, deep in my heart I realized that my life would soon end or I would become a slave. It was the constant talk of the town. The soldiers were constantly fearing invasion.
I listened in on their conversations. I heard them speak about the Romans enslaving everyone. Killing the children, forcing the adults into slavery, and leaving the Elders to die. At the time I realized the fate was the same for all. The children and the Elders die for nothing. The adults would die from exhaustion over the years and they would eventually die for nothing as everyone else had.
When the Romans finally arrived I realized they weren't so monstrous. But the Romans were still monsters. It may sound like a paradox but thats just how I figured it. They killed my mother and father. I ended up with no family. I was soon taken in as a servant by a rich Roman.
He eventually sold me off as a slave. He had found a new servant that could do everything I did only better. Somehow I went from being a servant, to being a slave, to being a farm hand, and then I ended up as a gladiator.
When I was sold off as a gladiator my dream ended. It help me grasp my path. I realized how uneventful my life had really been. I was worthless, I was just a worthless life created to serve an even less useful life.
My life had meaning because I had taken the lives of so many. If you could effect so many different lives as directly as I had then you meant something. At least more then someone who just got lucky.
When my dream was over I slowly opened my eyes the sight that beheld me was a surprising one. I saw an aged man walking he had blonde hair and a scar that ran across his face. Malcolm was his name. He was the man who had taken me on as his servant all those years ago. He was about to turn the corner when I yelled out to him.
"Malcolm," He turned around searching for whoever had called for him. I spoke again. "over here!" He looked into my cell and went wide eyed.
"By the Gods! Is that you Kane?" The old Roman kneeled down and put his face in between the bars for my cell. I staggered over to him. "I never thought I would ever see you again.
"Neither did I Malcolm. Its been so long, how have the years treated you?"
"Not well I fear, I came back to Rome to repent of my sins. I never expected to find you here but now that I have I need to ask you something. Whatever you choose will change the course of this day." He looked around, the guards were absent. "To repent of all my sins I came here today to help the slaves escape." I gasped. For the first time in years I had gasped. When I became a gladiator I had tried to block out my emotions they only make things harder.
"Do you think we can do it?" Malcolm nodded.
"Of course but I need to set the wheels into motion." I looked at him then a thought came to mind.
"Why are you going to do this?"
"Because I figured everyone deserves the chance to live long and live free." I smiled, as did he. In that instant I realized how much I actually mattered. The man I used to serve had now come to liberate me so I could live the life I never had.
Everyone mattered one way or another. We all had people that cared for us. Only problem was sometimes we focused to much on the people who didn't care.
I figure thats the problem with the human race. We loathe what others have and we want what we can never have.
The day I saw Malcolm in my cell and he spoke those words I thought of him like a Messiah. Now I realized he was just as important to me as I was to him.