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One man

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One man stands at the entrance. One man, armour splattered with dark red blood, wielding a small dagger in his remaining hand. One man, who stands in the middle of a ring of lifeless bodies: his comrades. One man. Only one man. I grin. Leaping onto the back of my black, thoroughbred, I advance toward the him who slowly looks up as I approach. His glare is like searing iron; startled, I yank on my reins, stopping my stallion only a few hundred feet from the giant wooden doors from where the man stands. My horse whinnies. It’s heart is also pierced by the lone man’s glare. His eyes never leave my body; and I find myself pull on the reins harder, forcing the horse to take a step back. I am speechless; the strength slowly drains from my body.
Then, shouts and screams behind me. Turning my head, I see my army. Thousands of men with swords and shields. Thousands of men ready to charge. Thousands of men ready to kill. The spell is broken. I whip my head back toward the man, my face twisted into a merciless sneer.
“WE ARE THE EMPIRE!” I scream. “WE REQUIRE YOUR MASTER’S HEAD!”
The man stares back without a word. I am encouraged.

“MOVE, IF YOU KNOW WHAT IS GOOD FOR YOU!” I bellow, my voice flying across the burning, charred field. The man did not move. I become irritated.
“MOVE, FOOL! MOVE! YOU CANNOT WIN! WE ARE THE EMPIRE! YOU, ONE MAN WITH A PUNY KNIFE, CANNOT HURT US!”
The man looks at his hand. A thin silver blade, ten inches long, embedded in a copper hilt, looks back at him. He raises his head. A thin smile appears on his lips.
“Come,” he says.
We charge.





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