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The Silver Skeleton Key Part 4
The corridor continually darkens as he drags me along, and I blink several times so my eyes could adjust. My feet weren't corresponding properly with my brain and the warrior had to jerk my arm several times to keep me from tripping. The corridor seems to stretch on forever with no door in sight. We made a right turn and highlighted by burning torches on the walls were two massive oak doors. Etched into the dark wood were intricately carved designs that captured my attention. I leaned closer, trying to get a better look at the drawings, but the warrior abruptly pulled me back.
The door slowly creaked open as if a mystical force that had sensed our arrival and I braced myself for whatever or whoever was on the other side. Light spills into the dark corridor illuminating the room inside. The warrior shoves me forward, causing me to lose my balance and I heavily on my hands and knees, emitting and an angry 'ouch'. He completely ignores me and turns on his heel exiting the door leaving me alone. The doors creak shut and I'm left still on my hands and smarting knees looking around my surroundings.
I get up slowly taking in the dark walls, paintings, the whole room lit by burning torches and the strip of red carpet underneath my feet that leads to a giant black throne, with carvings etched into the surface like the ones on the door, front and center of the spacious room. I take a few small steps forward when I hear the sound of a person clearing their throat. I turn my head toward the sound and I'm startled to see a figure hidden in the shadows.
The figure emerged from the shadows and I take a frightened step back. I thought my stalker was a nightmare, but the Master was a creature from hell. He towered over me, his sheer size intimidating me. But one look at his face stole my breath. His piercing red eyes were focused on me like a predator focuses on its prey; his face was disfigured with more scars than I could count, giving him a grotesque appearance. His arms were long and muscular, ending in sharp talons, perfect for tearing flesh, and then he smiled at me. Not a friendly smile, mind you, a terrifying smile that stretched across his face, making him look even scarier than before. His teeth were lengthy and sharp, but the part that frightened me the most is that they were stained bright red with blood. I shivered and took another step back as he took another step forward.
"It's very nice to meet you, Tessa." He said, his smile stretching even wider.
I remained silent as I stared at him, wondering what he wanted with me.
"Not much of a talker huh? No matter, that problem will soon be remedied." He continued, pacing the floor in front of me.
I continued to stare at the monstrosity before me, not daring to take a deep breath. He circled me, looking me up and down as I stood there silently, not daring to turn my head to follow his movements. He alluded to a chair behind me inviting me to take a seat. I told him that I would rather stand. He shrugged, and sat tersely in his large throne, peering across the room at me, through narrowed slits. For a moment we sat there in silence, me not moving a muscle, him, picking his teeth with his claw.
"Where is it?" He asked suddenly. I was startled for a moment, so I hesitated before I spoke.
"What?" I squeaked, before vigorously clearing my throat.
"Don't play games with me, Tessa. No one plays games with me, and remains alive." I trembled at the cold threat conveyed in his voice. "Where is it?"
"Where is what? I have no idea what you speak of." I said with an air of aloofness that I wished I had.
"Being difficult, eh? And you will address me as Master. Nothing more, and certainly nothing less."
His supposed superiority instigated a prick of annoyance within me.
"I don't know what you're looking for, and I really don't care. It is no business of mine. So if we're finished here . . ." I trailed off as I was roughly pinned up against the course wall of the dungeon, his teeth mere inches away from my face. I let out a scream which echoed back at me with finite clarity.
"I'll not have this, you insolent child! You will show respect and you will tell or show me where the key is, or so help me; I will shred your pretty little face with my teeth and throw the scraps to the dogs!"