Vengeance

This is a dark age, a bloody age, an age of daemons and of sorcery.

Vengeance

Postby greywulf » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:13 pm

Image


**WARNING**

**THIS FICTION WILL CONTAIN MILD SEXUAL IMAGERY, MODERATE VIOLENCE AND TORTURE**
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~ PROLOGUE ~

Postby greywulf » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:14 pm

Husam stumbled along the alley, clutching at the deep dagger wound in his side, teeth gritted against the pain as he fell to his knees on the filth-coated cobbles. Sobbing, he closed his eyes and screamed his anguish at the injustices that had befallen him.

Husam’s wife Aludra lay just ahead of him, both her life and that of their unborn child ended by the knife protruding from her swollen belly.

Crawling awkwardly with one hand, Husam made his way over to her, ignoring the pain of the jagged cobbles ripping into his knees.

He looked down at his wife, seeing past the blood streaking her face and the bruising around her neck.

Husam saw Aludra as she looked on the night of their blessing, lying upon their marital divan. She had been beautiful and innocent, with her long raven-black mane unbound and spilling over her shoulders, offering the unspoiled realm of her naked body to her nervous husband.

They had been betrothed to each other since childhood, their families arranging their future marriage to cement a blossoming trade relationship between the two households.

In the time until they were both of age, Husam and Aludra had met only when chaperoned, their growing feelings for each other expressed in snatched touches and whispered words. Their times together had grown fewer as Husam had begun to be introduced to his family’s business, exporting spices from their native Araby to Bretonnia, and he found himself yearning more then every for Aludra’s dusky-skinned beauty.

The night of the blessing they had both disrobed uneasily and then laid together on the cushions of the bed within their new shared chambers, nervous excitement evident as they had both begun to shyly explore the naked flesh of the other.

“Do not worry, my sweet,” Aludra had murmured against Husam’s coarsely bearded cheek, kissing his neck as he clumsily pleased her. “We have all our lives to discover each other.” She pulled back to look at his face, her dark eyes sparkling with happiness. “We have a lifetime together in which to share each other.”

They had made love then, their actions nervous and cautious, whispering words of sincere devotion as they had shyly explored each other for the first time.

Their youthful passion had born fruit that night, the news of Aludra’s pregnancy filling Husam with great joy, this elation giving way to trepidation as her condition had progressed.

For this reason he had brought his pregnant wife to Bretonnia as his duties had grown more and more demanding, not wanting to be absent at the arrival of his first born.

If he had not done so, then bloody tragedy would not have claimed her.
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~ CHAPTER ONE~

Postby greywulf » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:14 pm

“I could never get used to the weather here, Husam.”

Aludra pressed herself against her husband, seeking refuge from the rain beneath the thick cloak that Husam was using to shield them both from the downpour. “I miss having the warm sun upon my skin and a gentle breeze teasing at my hair.” Shivering, Aludra wished she had followed Husam’s leave and dressed more warmly before attending the theatre. “I do not know how these Bretonnians stand it, living in such a dreary place.”

Laughing, Husam pulled his cloak tighter around them. “It is winter here, my love. Bretonnia is not always so cold and sodden.” He stroked the hard swell of Aludra’s belly, his hand slipping beneath her clothing as he did so. “Do not worry, our son will be born within the borders of Araby. My business here in Brionne will soon be completed for a time.”

“Son?” Aludra commented, placing her own hand over Husam’s questing one. “I have already told you, our child is to be a girl, I am certain of it.” She moved her husband’s rough palm. “See, she is to be a strong swimmer, just like her mother.”

Husam felt his unborn child gently kick against his hand. “If our first born is a daughter, we shall just have to try again for an heir,” he tickled Aludra’s side playfully. “No matter how many times I must make you heavy with child.”

“And I am in no doubt you would find such a chore to be tedious,” Aludra remarked, a smile twitching on her full lips. “I am certain I would have to force you.”

“Oh, I am confident I could muster some enthusiasm for the task, my love.” Husam planted a kiss on Aludra’s forehead, his wife raising her face to his in response to the gesture. Their lips met forcefully, and Husam pulled his wife close, careful not to press too hard against her swollen belly.

Such conduct would have been unseemly in their native Araby, for a man to show such naked affection towards his wife in public. To be able to make no illusion of his love for Aludra seemed to Husam a worthy trade for having to deal with the often-inclement Bretonnia weather.

Breaking their embrace, Husam pushed a lock of wet hair from Aludra’s face and looked down at her with a gentle smile. “Come, my wife. Let us get you out of this rain.” He began to guide her onwards through the streets towards their townhouse. “When we return, I will have a warm bathtub prepared for your relaxation.” Husam cupped Aludra’s rump playfully. “Though I insist that I personally administer your soothing oils myself after you have bathed.”

Giggling, Aludra swatted away Husam’s hand and matched his pace, having to walk quickly to keep up with her tall husband. As she strode beside him, Aludra glanced up at the solid features of Husam, even the rain running from his strong nose and soaking his trimmed dark beard failing to reduce the impact of her husband’s patrician features.

Ormazd blessed me the day he entwined our fates, Aludra thought as she once again cast her eyes upon the street ahead. No daughter of Araby has ever felt such happiness and joy as I. She placed a hand on her stomach, shushing gently as she rubbed reassuring against the energetic kicking of her unborn child.

Husam and Aludra walked along the cobbles, mingling with those also unlucky enough to have business that required them to be out in the cold rain.

Each traveller ignored the next, eager to once again take warmth and shelter away from the downpour.

Husam shook water from his turban with a flick of his head, his irritation towards the rain growing with each passing moment. The decision to forgo their carriage while attending the evening’s play at the local theatre was one he now regretted. As he walked, the arabyan become aware of an alleyway that looked like it would shorten their journey, and began to steer Aludra towards the roofed passageway.

Such was his haste that Husam failed to notice the three men who moved to follow, their cloth-bound boots making little noise as they kept their distance while stalking their oblivious quarry.
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~ CHAPTER TWO~

Postby greywulf » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:15 pm

“Husam ibn Hammad!”

A heavily accented voice called out and Husam looked back instinctively, the arabyan origin of the speaker confirmed as Husam cast his eyes across the trio of hooded figures behind he and Aludra.

The one who had spoken pulled back his sodden cowl, revealing dark skin and broad features along with the facial tattoos of a Sahra-born nomad marking his cheeks. “My name is Murahib. I would speak with you,” the arabyan said.

His compatriots remained hooded, though their broad shoulders indicated they were not of arabyan stock, most likely natives of Bretonnia.

“Husam, who are these men?” muttered Aludra. She pressed against her husband, placing a shaking hand over her stomach defensively. “How do they know your name?”

Husam slowly unclasped his cloak, watching the three strangers as he draped the garment over Aludra’s shoulders. “I do not know, my love” He moved deliberately to place himself between his wife and the cloaked men. “I am sure there is nothing to worry about. Please, wait here.” Even as Husam spoke, anxiety was filling his heart. He hoped that he had betrayed none of this concern to both the strangers and Aludra, who watched as her husband began to step slowly away from her, towards the one who had declared himself as Murahib.

Placing one hand atop the hilt of the scimitar that hung at his hip, Husam laid the other respectfully against his chest before bowing slightly, keeping his eyes on Murahib as he did so. “Salaam to you, sayedy,” Husam said courteously. “How can I help a fellow son of Araby this wintry evening?”

Murahib’s cloak billowed slightly as he returned the salute and bow, Husam’s keen eyes catching sight of a pair of curved swords strapped to the man’s hips.

“Salaam. My name is Murahib ibn Sahra. I am an agent of Ahmad ibn Fadlan,” replied Murahib. “I have been instructed to ask that you bear an important message to your father, Hammad ibn Ammen.”

The mention of ibn Fadlan caused Husam’s features to harden.

His father had recently referred to the man in his letters, a nomad of considerable weath who had approached him with the aim of sharing trade routes. Ibn Fadlan had offered Husam’s father a sultan’s ransom to try to expand his own fledging export business, a deal that had been rejected outright, for Ibn Fadlan had a dubious past, filled with stories of desert piracy and villainy.

“I believe my father has already heard all that your master could hope to say to him,” Husam said, lowering the hand from his chest. “Hammad ibn Ammen will have no dealings with Ahmad ibn Fadlan.”

Murahib smiled faintly. “I would beg you to reconsider your stance, sayedy. Ahmad ibn Fadlan does not respond well when his requests are declined.” The nomad inclined his head a little, the smile on his lips fading. “I am the person my master sends when he wishes a decision to be swayed in his favour.”

“I will waste no more of my time with you,” Husam said, stepping away from Murahib and his companions. “It would appear that my father was correct in his judgment of Ahmad ibn Fadlan.” He turned to leave, but the nomad’s hand on his arm stopped him.

“I have been instructed to make sure my master’s message is delivered by whatever means necessary,” said Murahib coldly. His eyes slid past Husam, the man doing nothing to hide the gesture. “There are many ways for a message to be delivered. Some more unpleasant then others.”

From her place a short distance behind Husam, Aludra noticed the cloaked nomad looking at her. She bit her lip to hold back her fear, knowing that to show it would be seen as a sign that she thought Husam unable to protect her. Instead she cupped her swollen belly as she tried to distract herself, murmuring a lullaby to her unborn child while she did so.

Husam followed the other man’s gaze, finding Aludra to be the target of Murahib’s attention. Anger firing his blood, Husam snapped his head around and stepped towards the nomad. “If you lay a hand on my wife, I swear, by Ormazd’s sacred throne, I shall not suffer you to live,” he snarled at Murahib.

The fury on Husam’s face was replaced by agony as pain flared in his side. He looked down in surprise at the dagger suddenly protruding from his belly.

“Your dead body would be message enough to your father,” spat Murahib, twisting his knife within the other man’s flesh. “But sometimes it proves sensible to enforce your statement.” The nomad pulled his weapon free before stepping to the side, his gaze once again locked on Aludra.

Husam fell to his knees, clutching at the wound in his abdomen as he cried out in pain and anger. He struggled to rise, drawing his scimitar to attack Murahib, but the nomad lashed out a boot that caught him under the chin, knocking him back to the ground.

At a slight gesture from Murahib, the two men flanking him pulled back their hoods, revealing cruel faces tempered by a life of villainy. “Kill the woman,” the nomad ordered. “Make sure that my master’s message is clear, that no man denies Ahmad ibn Fadlan that which he desires.”
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~ CHAPTER THREE~

Postby greywulf » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:16 pm

Aludra gasped, as she saw the arabyan nomad move furtively behind her husband's back. The arabyan had something in his hand. Something that reflected the sunlight from its polished metal surface.

"Husam... No!"

Her warning went unheard, and Husam instead turned around to face the nomad, who, mouth curling in a wicked smile, plunged the knife into her husband's gut.

It took a moment before Husam become conscious of the wound, though that time seemed an eternity to his wife. Aludra stood confused by the scene playing out before her, incapable of dealing with what was happening.

Aludra was a woman of Araby, raised in Ka-Sabar, and unused to violence. Nothing her childhood tutors had taught her about wifely conduct and civility could have prepared her for such wickedness, nor what little knowledge of the world outside of Araby that Aludra had managed to pester from her husband.

Her limbs numbed by fear, Aludra watched as Husam fell to the cobbles, an action she found herself echoing as her façade of restraint finally fell apart. She collapsed upon the rain-drenched ground, moaning in panic while shielding her swollen belly.

“Ormazd protect us,” Aludra whimpered, bowing her face in desperate prayer. The terror robbing her of strength increased as Aludra looked up to see the murderous arabyan staring at her, the knife in his hand sticky with blood. “Oh, my poor Husam.” She began to sob uncontrollably.

Before Aludra, Husam tried to draw his scimitar, only to be thwarted by a stiff kick from nomad that felled her husband. The cloaked arabyan looked coldly down at Husam before saying something to his companions.

Aludra did not understand what the nomad had said, her knowledge of Bretonnian found wanting. The intentions of the two men were perfectly clear, however. They stepped past her fallen husband and walked towards her, their faces breaking into wicked smiles.



~~~



Murahib had made Husam witness the loathsome fate of his wife.

Husam bowed his head and wept against Aludra’s cheek, his tears streaking the filthy finger marks left by the two thugs who had pinned his wife to the ground and violated her.

Husam had struggled beneath the boot of Murahib, unable to stop the sadistic actions of the arabyan’s hired ruffians or cry out, for the nomad had pushed his balled fist into his mouth to silence him.

The bretonnians had shoved Aludra to the floor, their rough hands pawing eagerly at her luxurious clothes. When she had sobbed to her attackers that she was with child, they had simply cackled and continued their vile assault. All the while her husband thrashed against the heavy boot wedged against his neck, his eyelids kept open by the stiff fingers of Murahib.

He had been forced to watch as the duo abused his beloved Aludra before discarding her amongst the rubbish and excrement littering the alleyway, leaving her to sob and wail while clutching her belly, praying for her unborn child.

“Did that make you feel powerless? Watching your precious desert flower be plucked by a couple of dirty Bretonnians?” Murahib goaded Husam, the tribal markings on the nomad’s cheeks twisting as he grinned down at the struggling man.

Kneeling, Murahib hauled Husam up so he could see his weeping beloved. Her clothes were torn from the wicked attack, the skin of her youthful body exposed to the leering eyes of the two men standing over her. “Oh, she is such a pretty thing,” Murahib commented. “It will be such a shame to put to death such a beauty.” He snorted mockingly at the prone Husam. “You do not deserve such a woman, sayedy. You are weak and pathetic, not worthy of such an exquisite jewel as she.”

Husam choked against Murahib’s fist, tears of rage and grief stinging his eyes. Shamed, he fought against the nomad’s grasp, his actions earning him a sharp blow to his wounded gut.

“Keep still, sayedy,” advised Murahib, hitting the other man with an almost casual elbow strike. “Do not make your woman see you dishonour yourself yet further before she dies.” The nomad withdrew his fist from Husam’s mouth, allowing the man to breath.

Gagging in pain, Husam clutched at his wounded stomach, desperately gulping for air. He found himself unable to speak, as agony flared in his abdomen and stole his words. Glancing down, Husam looked at the blood soaking the front of his jerkin, the horrendous sight filling him with dread. Whimpering, he raised his eyes to look at his degraded wife.

Aludra lay upon the cobbles, defiled by heathens at the command of the taunting nomad restraining him. As Husam watched, she looked to him, her once beautiful face twisted in horror. And shame. Aludra's lips trembled as she tried to speak, but anguish and fear stole her words, leaving only a low animal whimper that chilled Husam's blood.

Husam tried to call out to her, but Murahib thrust a knife into his mouth, holding the blade against the inside of his left cheek, the thug shushing gently as he pressed the knife’s edge into the corner of Husam’s mouth.

One of Aludra’s attackers pulled a long bladed dagger from his belt, chuckling as the woman baulked at the sight of the butcher blade.

“Pray for your family, sayedy,” Murahib whispered to Husam, nodding to the man wielding the knife. “Finish her.”

The nomad held Husam's face, forcing him to watch while the thug stabbed his knife deep into his beloved Aludra's swollen stomach.

Aludra screamed gutturally as the blade entered her, the heart-rending sound both chilling Husam’s blood and exciting the knifeman. Chuckled softly, the murderer twisted the knife once, twice and then stepped away to admire his vile butchery, leaving the dirty hilt of his dagger protruding from Aludra’s blood-slicked flesh.

Husam howled in anger, the knife filling his mouth no longer threat enough to stop him bellowing, as raw emotion flooded his body. In response, Murahib casually whipped his knife through the meat of Husam’s cheek, slicing till the blade notched against the other man’s cheekbone.

Husam fell clutching his face, crying in pain at his wounded cheek, hot blood filling his mouth as the nomad used a foot to turn him over on to his back.

Murahib knelt, resting a knee on Husam’s chest to hold him down as the thug slapped his still whole cheek to get his attention. “You will bear my master’s message to your father, Husam ibn Hammad,” the nomad said coldly, before gesturing towards the corpse of Aludra. “The death of your wife and unborn child is evidence enough of Ahmad ibn Fadlan’s resolve.”

Beckoning to his compatriots, Murahib rose to stand over Husam, sheathing his knife as he looked down at the dispirited man.

“You will live this day, sayedy. Your wounds, though severe, will not kill you, as long as you seek aid.” The nomad made to leave the alley, before pausing to turn and look at the injured Husam with cold amusement. “Though, it would not surprise me if you would resign yourself to a slow dishonourable death, having failed to guard your family.”

With that Murahib walked away, his mocking laughter echoing off the alleyway’s walls.
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~ CHAPTER FOUR~

Postby greywulf » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:17 pm

The memory of Murahib’s scorn haunted Husam now as he pulled his wife’s body towards him. Closing his eyes, he pressed his ruined cheek to Aludra’s forehead before rocking gently, humming a lullaby his nursemaid had sung to him as a child. Weeping, he embraced her gently, stroking her filth-streaked hair.

Husam felt something press into him and he drew back to look down at the hilt of the dagger jutting from Aludra’s stomach. Laying his wife down gently, Husam placed a shaking hand upon the knife’s grip. He pulled the weapon free slowly, taking care not to add to the mutilation afflicted by his wife’s killer, each gentle tug of his hand accompanied by a quiet sob. The weapon tumbled from Husam’s hand. He stared unnerved at the blood now coating his trembling fingers.

Aludra had been his to shelter and endow with all that she had desired. He had failed in that duty. His inaction would bring great shame upon both his and her kin, marking him a coward. Even as grief flooded through him, Husam felt disgrace at what had been done to Aludra while he watched. He had laid restrained by Murahib, as useless as an old woman, powerless to put a stop to her being defiled and murdered.

Honour dictated that he seek out vengeance for the wrong that been committed, and by doing so he could seek to redeem himself in the eyes of Ormazd.

Husam wiped his bloodied hand upon his jerkin, staring down at Aludra’s face. Her smooth skin was chafed by her attackers’ brutal deeds, the once flawless beauty of her features spoiled by the vile Bretonnian thugs. Husam reached out and cupped Aludra’s face, tenderly kissing her bruised lips before reaching for the cloak lying discarded upon the cobbles beside her.

“Ma as-salaamah, my love,” he whispered, before covering Aludra’s lifeless body to shield her from the rain finding its way through the alley’s roof. “I will avenge you.”

The sound of footsteps filled the alley, as passers-by alerted by the final scream of Aludra approached the unpleasant scene, their arrival stirring Husam from his angst. He glanced up at the growing crowd, embarrassment at his condition rising as he looked into their faces. He struggled to rise, clutching at his wounded side as he did so. Angrily, he thrust away the hands offering to support him, growling at their owners as he staggered upright, his violent disposition causing them to step back lest he attack them in his frenzy.

Husam snatched his scimitar from where it lay upon the cobbles, his body shaking with furious emotion as he brandished the weapon.

“Get away!” he snarled, waving the sword limply, almost overbalancing in his weakened state. “None of you infidels are to touch her!” Crashing into the wall of the alley, Husam leaned against the wet brickwork, breathing in laboured gasps as he gathered his strength, eyes brimming with tears.

With one last look towards his murdered wife, the arabyan lurched away to seek aid from his household, the scimitar in his hand cumbersome, though not as heavy as the rage and anguish balling in his stomach.
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~CHAPTER FIVE~

Postby greywulf » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:18 pm

Sahib watched from the doorway as Abed worked on the tear splitting Husam’s left cheek. The old arabyan was disturbed at the lack of reaction being shown by his master’s son.

Husam was sat motionless on the edge of his divan, his face blank and impassive as a needle and thread were used to pull the two edges of the wound together. The pain had to be great. Although he stitched cautiously, Abed inadvertently tugged at the edges of the wound on occasion. He was, after all, more used to employing his skills on cloth than flesh.

If they had been within the borders of Araby, Sahib would have commanded a skilled physician to attend to Husam, but here, in heathen Bretonnia, the old arabyan had been loathe to allow an infidel lay his hands on the boy.

For in Sahib’s eyes Husam ibn Hammad was still a boy, the tenth and youngest son of Hammad ibn Ammen, scarcely into his seventeenth year and far too immature to be acting as his father’s agent in Brionne. The tragic events of the evening were a stark testament to Husam’s youth. No proud man of Araby would have allowed his wife to be defiled and then murdered, not while he himself drew breath.

Sahib could barely keep the disdain from his face as he hobbled to stand behind the servant closing Husam’s wound.

“Word has been sent to your father, as well as the family of Aludra, regarding her death,” he said to Husam, leaning on his walking stick. “The business relationship between the two houses may well become annulled. Your father will be most aggrieved.”

Husam turned his head to look at the old arabyan. “Is that all which you are concerned with, Sahib?” he asked, his words full of boiling rage. “My wife, the woman who was bearing my child, lies dead, and you are apprehensive about my father’s reaction to a potential loss of trade?”

With a wry smile, Sahib gestured around him at the opulent furnishings abundant within Husam’s chambers. “It is your father’s wealth that allows you to live surrounded by such riches.” He stepped towards the low couch positioned near Husam’s divan and reached down. The old arabyan produced a discarded silk bustier of Aludra’s from amongst the cushions, holding the piece of clothing between thumb and forefinger. “And it will be his riches that will secure you another pretty wife, when some merchant wishes to show his commitment to conducting business with your father.”

Sahib’s cruel words jabbed at Husam and he rose, shoved Abed aside as he did, taking the servant by surprise and knocking him from his stool. “Show some reverence, Sahib!” Husam barked, stepping towards the old arabyan, the needle attached to the thread being stitched through his face swinging wildly as he did so. “You may be my father’s advisor, but you are still an indentured man!”

“Respect is earned, child, not gifted,” Sahib replied. “I serve your father, not you, something you would do well to remember.”

Husam went to strike Sahib, but the old arabyan moved with surprising speed, landing a blow with his cane against Husam’s recently stitched stomach wound.

Husam cried out in pain and fell awkwardly, clutching at his side as he propped himself against the edge of his bed.

Placing the tip of his cane under Husam’s chin, Sahib roughly tipped the young man’s face up. “You are my master’s youngest son,” Sahib commented, “And as such you are barely worthy of notice in his eyes. The only duty you had ever been tasked with in life was to help improve Hammad ibn Ammen’s relationship with Tariq ibn Rahim.” Sahib lowered his walking stick, leaning on the cane as he looked down Husam, contempt evident in his eyes. “And you could not even do that. You are not worthy of your father’s name.”

Sahib turned to leave Husam’s chamber, pausing to address the rising Abed. “Do not stitch too neatly,” Sahib ordered the servant, running arthritic fingers through his beard. “Leave him with a clear reminder of his dishonour.”

Husam watched Sahib go, anger at being humiliated overriding the tenderness of his aggravated wound. Awkwardly, he pushed himself up onto the bed, grunting painfully at the effort.

The scrape of Abed righting his stool gained Husam’s attention, and he watched the servant nervously approach him.

“I would ask you to keep still, sayedy,” Abed requested, bowing respectfully. “I have almost finished closing the wound.” He sat and made to take hold of the needle hanging from Husam’s cheek, only to have the man roughly seize his wrist.

“Leave me,” Husam snarled, as he reached up and grabbed the needle before placing it onto Abed’s palm. “And have wine brought to my chamber immediately.” He closed the servant’s hand and pushed him away.

Abed bowed before departing to relay Husam’s request, grateful to leave the young arabyan’s presence, drawing the curtain across the chamber’s doorway as he left.

Stroking the haphazardly stitched wound on his cheek, Husam rose awkwardly and stepped to the couch, reaching down and taking hold of Aludra’s bustier as he did so. He held it to his face for a moment, breathing in the familiar scent of jasmine that still clung to the fabric. Tears brimming in his eyes, Husam looked down at the silk garment in his hand. Its exquisite fabric was now soiled; broad smears of blood and filth marred its beauty, left by his own grimy fingers.

“Your wine, sayedy.”

The woman’s voice behind Husam made him turn to find a curtseying servant waiting in the doorway, having already placed a wine flask and a fluted glass at her feet.

“Go,” Husam instructed, bowing his head to conceal his tears.

The woman nodded, keeping her eyes averted as she did so. “Yes, sayedy.” She hesitated, and then spoke again. “Sayedy Sahib would like you to know that the body of your wife has been brought to the house, and she has been placed in the reception chamber.” The servant curtseyed low before stepping backwards from the room, leaving Husam alone once again.

Husam retrieved the bottle from the floor, ignoring the accompanying glass as he moved to sit upon the couch, taking a long pull of lukewarm wine to try to dull the aching pain eating at his heart. As he took another mouthful, Husam looked at the shrine to Ormazd opposite him, watching the incense smoke curl around the bronze idol set upon the top of the small memorial.

“What would you have me do?” Husam asked of the statue. His eyes strayed towards the ceremonial scimitar and long dagger mounted on the wall above the shrine. As he watched, the incense smoke coiled around the polished handles of the two weapons, as if Ormazd himself was reaching out to touch them.

The wine had little effect when it came to deadening Husam’s grief, the alcohol only causing Husam to become more emotional as he rose to stand before the shrine. The wine bottle fell from Husam’s hand as he dropped to his knees before the idol of Ormazd, his eyes darting between the face of The One and the weapons mounted above him.

He hesitated for a moment, and then rose to his feet.

The incense stung at Husam’s eyes and throat as he reached up to the scimitar and dagger, lifting them from their mounts before testing the balance of their weight in his hands. Husam had never handled either weapon before; it was if they had been made for him and him alone, so perfect were the bindings of their grips.

Dropping to a knee, Husam placed the weapons on the floor before bowing his head in prayer.

“I swear before Ormazd, the One True God,” said Husam, his voice heavy with sentiment,” that I will visit retribution upon those who have wronged me…” Husam’s voice broke as emotion overtook him, and he bit back his tears before continuing. “…who have wronged me and wronged my Aludra.”

His oath given, Husam retrieved his scimitar and dagger and moved to prepare.
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~CHAPTER SIX~

Postby greywulf » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:19 pm

The weak moonlight trickling through the reception chamber’s window struggled to push back the gloom.

The feeble light spilled over Aludra's face, casting shadows that highlighted the scratches that marked her youthful features. She lay upon a low bench in the room’s centre, a dark-skinned beauty swathed in layers of silks, the horrid wound that had ended both her and her child hidden beneath the sheets of material.

A shrouded man stepped into the darkened room, the muted colours of his clothing blending into the gloom, only the dull gleam of metal at his waist visible.

The hooded figure waited for a moment for his eyes to adjust to the shadows before walking towards the body of Aludra. He stared down at the woman’s lifeless spoiled face then stretched out a shaking hand to touch her cheek, his gloved fingers gently tracing the gouges and discolorations left by the men that had sullied her.

Reaching up, he pulled back his cowl, revealing ruined features of his own.

Husam looked down at Aludra, heartache evident in his eyes. “They will pay, my love,” he murmured. “I will not rest until I have avenged you.”

“And what do you think you can do to make that happen?”

Sahib revealed himself, stepping from the shadows of the doorway to walk towards Husam, an oil burner swinging in his free hand.

“You are a mere boy, Husam ibn Hammad,” Sahib commented as he looked Husam over, taking in his rough travelling clothes with obvious amusement. “You think that wearing the garb of a desert warrior makes you one?” Sahib drew open Husam’s cloak, looking at the scimitar and long dagger strapped to the young man’s belt. “Clothes do not make the man, child. His deeds do.” He gestured to the weapons. “Now hand me those before you cause yourself further injuries.”

Husam felt anger welling within him, Sahib’s dismissive words stoking the flames of his temper. “I mean to kill those who have wronged me, old man,” he commented. “Do not try to deter me from that path, Sahib, lest I-”

“Hah!” Sahib’s bark of laughter cut Husam off, as the old arabyan leaned on his stick to look up at the taller Husam. “Lest you do what, young sayedy? Will you kill me?” He motioned to the body of Aludra lying nearby. “She lies there only because you lack the mettle required for such a thing.”

“Enough!” Husam roared, angrily squaring up to Sahib as he did so. “I have had my fill of your scornful words!”

Sahib chuckled. “I speak only the truth, Husam. If that distresses you, well, then your grief serves only to prove my point.”

Husam felt his hand stray towards the hilt of his dagger, anger driving him. “You will be silent, Sahib,” he warned, “My patience wears thin, as does my tolerance for your behaviour. My father’s advisor or no, you have no right to speak to me as you do.”

“So, the pup bares his teeth,” Sahib remarked, the old arabyan noticing Husam’s hand moving. “You do not possess the nerve to attack me, boy. You only bring further dishonour on yourself.”

Deep within Husam the inferno of his rage finally exploded, seizing control of the young arabyan. Enraged at Sahib's dismissive words, and driven by blind fury, he took hold of his dagger and thrust it into the side of Sahib’s neck, the impulsive attack catching the old arabyan unawares. “No more will I be ridiculed!” growled Husam, drawing the weapon’s blade clear before repeatedly plunging it into Sahib’s chest.

Sahib clutched in vain at the sucking wound in his neck, trying to stem the blood spurting from the gash even as Husam stabbed again and again at him, the wild fury of the other man driving him to his knees as the whirlwind of knife blows struck true.

Husam watched Sahib collapse, the man gasping for air even as his life drained away. The passion and thrill of Husam's violent actions began to wane, the dagger slipping from his trembling fingers as realization struck him. What had he done?

Husam stared unnerved at the blood now covering his hands, the dark red marking him as a murderer.
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~CHAPTER SEVEN~

Postby greywulf » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:20 pm

Husam stared at Sahib's slack face. Even in death, it seemed to him that the old man's eyes retained a glimmer of contempt. Reaching down, Husam pushed Sahib’s eyelids shut, leaving behind a bloody thumbprint on each one.

“All my life I have been fully aware that my father has disregarded me,” Husam said calmly, addressing Sahib’s corpse. “Do not misunderstand me, I know that I have wanted for nothing. My every whim has been catered for, since the day my loving mother birthed me.” He sat back on his haunches, tapping the dagger’s bloody blade against his cheek. “But money and possessions do not replace love and caring. These are the things that I wished my father to give me, not trinkets.”

Husam glanced over at Aludra. Specks of Sahib's blood marked her death gown, the red standing out against the pure white of the cloth. Even in death she was dishonoured. Even her serenity was sullied by his actions. How could he have been so foolish?

“When my father revealed his wish that I was to marry,” Husam commented, “I hoped beyond hope that he had arranged the match for more then a business pact.” Husam stretched out with his empty hand to wipe futilely at the blood spots, his actions only smearing the marks further. “I knew that my father viewed me as nothing more then his final son, the offspring of his fourth wife.” Husam smiled wryly. “The runt of the litter, you might say.” He absently started to pick at the stitching holding together his ruined cheek. “But was it too much to think that my absent father would show me the consideration of choosing me a beautiful first wife for more than his own gain? That he thought me worthy of consideration?”

Sahib’s still lips offered no answer to Husam’s question, though the young arabyan responded as if the other man had launched another scathing tirade. Husam thumped his fist against Sahib’s tattered chest then leaned close to the dead man’s face.“You may think that I am nothing more then a useless child," he growled,"That I am unworthy, but have I had the chance to prove myself more then such?”

Once more, Sahib’s imagined response angered Husam. He slapped Sahib across the face, enjoying being able to strike the old man who had derided him his whole life. “I could do nothing to save her, you old jackal!” Husam hissed in his deranged state. “How could I have defeated three men, me being wounded and restrained?” He backhanded Sahib. “There was nothing I could do. Nothing!”

Husam raised his arm to strike Sahib again, but the blow did not fall. Realisation flickered in his eyes. He lowered his arm, staring for a moment at the old man's lifeless features. There was no mockery now. No arrogance. Just an old murdered man, lying in his own blood. Husam turned away, shame darkening his face.

Husam stood, his balance uneasy as he did so, his strength sapped by emotion. On unresponsive legs the young arabyan fell. He collided with a wall of the reception room, knocking over a nearby oil burner as he did so. The oil burner toppled, spilling the contents of its lamp as it struck the floor, paraffin soaking the straw-covered floorboards. Husam leaned against the cold stone, breathing in anxious gasps while he gathered his strength.

Too late, Husam realised that the spilt torch oil had reached Sahib’s discarded oil lamp, the puddle of paraffin instantly catching alight as it did so.

The dried straw covering the floor began to burn, the flames growing higher with each passing moment. Husam felt disorientated by the swiftness with which the fire was spreading, and he stumbled to Aludra’s side. Frantically, the young arabyan tried to figure out a way to rescue her from the rising flames. In desperation, Husam struggled to lift his dead wife, finding the weight of her body too much for him to bear. Defeated, he stopped his labours. Glancing at the hungry fire, he reached down and unclasped the brass collar that hugged against Aludra’s neck.

“I must leave you now, my love,” Husam whispered, mindful of the heat of the fire against his legs. “I could not save you, but I will avenge you,” he promised to his unmoving wife, his body starting to shake as guilt and anger welled within him. Aludra would never be buried within Araby’s warm earth, a fate that would bring further dishonour upon her. Husam placed his hand gently on Aludra's stomach, taking care to not touch the hideous wound he knew was hidden beneath her death robes. "Be mindful of your mother, little one," he said, biting back tears of grief. "Stay close beside her at the Great Oasis."

Secreting Aludra’s choker within his jacket, Husam looked down at the body of Sahib. Flames were already licking at the old arabyan’s clothes. The blaze was eager to consume him, yet lacking the strength to do so. Husam took steps to aid the growing fire in its efforts, seeking to destroy the evidence of his murderous behaviour.

One by one, Husam knocked over the remaining oil burners, adding more paraffin to the flames each time. The blaze grew stronger. Its flames were now jumping to the ceiling, the wooden slats beginning to smoulder under the heat.

Husam darted through the fire towards the chamber’s doorway, seeking escape from the inferno. With a final glance towards Aludra, her body now wreathed in flames, he ran from the room, leaving the blaze to continue to mature.
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~CHAPTER EIGHT~

Postby greywulf » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:21 pm

CLANG!

Abed awoke with a start, his slumber disturbed by the nearby clamour of metal striking wood, the sound arousing the servant’s curiosity. Who or what could be up and about at this hour? Sitting up in bed, he listened carefully. Another clang rang out, prompting Abed to throw back the bedcovers and rise quickly, the arabyan reaching for a thick dressing gown with which to combat the cold night. Pulling on the garment, he drew back the curtain from his doorway and stepped out into the hall.

The moonlight streaming through the corridor’s small skylight barely pierced the gloom, Abed’s eyes taking a moment to adjust. He walked cautiously towards the doorway that linked the servant quarters with the main house.

A hand on Abed’s shoulder made him start, and he turned to find Juliana behind him, relief evident on the Bretonnian woman’s handsome face.

“Oh, Abed! Thank the Lady!” she exclaimed in a hushed tone. “We should send word for the city guard.” The woman hesitated, seeing the unspoken anxiety in his eyes at the suggestion. “Is that not the best thing to do?”

“Sayedy Sahib would not approve of such a thing. He regards the skills of your country’s lawmen as mediocre at best.” Abed gently removed Juliana’s hand, gesturing for her to return to her room. “I am sure that it is nothing to be concerned about in any case. Now please, I will investigate the disturbance and rouse the sayedy if it is necessary.”

Juliana nodded, the woman retreating back to her doorway and slipping inside gratefully. She had no desire to be the one to have to wake Sayedy Sahib.

Neither did Abed.

“By the grace of Ormazd, I hope this is nothing more then a trapped owl again,” the arabyan servant muttered as he entered the main house, closing the door quietly behind him. “The last thing I desire is to be offered the opportunity to enrage either sayedy Sahib or young master Husam yet further.”

Ormazd proved to be in a less then charitable mood as more clattering echoed, the racket coming from the direction of the reception chamber in which the body of Aludra bint Tariq had been placed.

“By the sands of-” began Abed, the smell of smoke that teased his nostrils cutting him short. It was coming from the reception room, a fact that set unease stirring his gut. Warily, he began to walk towards the room, cautiously moving along the interlinking corridor.

He collided with a running figure, both Abed and the unknown interloper tumbling to the floor. The servant managed to end atop the intruder, raising a fist to strike out of instinct, before realising the identity of the man he was straddling.

“Sayedy Husam!” exclaimed Abed, halting his punch. “Please let me help you to your feet.” Standing, he extended a hand to aid the other man. “What are you doing up at this hour? What is the nature of all this commotion?”

Husam hesitantly took Abed’s offered hand, the young arabyan’s mind racing as he struggled to think of a justification for his haste and flustered state. “There is a fire in the reception room,” he blurted out, “Sahib has been murdered by the thieves, who set the blaze to cover their escape. I happened upon them too late to stop them, for they were escaping as I arrived. We must leave, now, before the flames take the whole building.” Grabbing hold of Abed, he led him in the direction of the servant quarters.

Abed let himself be guided back the way he had come, though uncertainty tugged at him. “But young sayedy, who would wish to-“ he began, before Husam silenced him with a rough shake.

“We do not have time to wonder,” Husam urged. “We can question the will of Ormazd after we have left.” He shoved Abed roughly, propelling him towards the door to the servant quarters. “Go! Now!”

Abed stumbled forwards, caught by surprise at Husam’s rough push. He instinctively reached out to balance himself, and caught hold of the young sayedy’s wrist. When the servant released his grasp, uttering words of apology at touching Husam, he found his fingers now sticky with blood.

“Sayedy Husam, you said you did not tackle the intruders, yet you have blood upon your hand.” Abed began to step away from Husam, unease compelling him to distance himself from the young sayedy. The servant had seen Sahib and Husam argue bitterly not more then an hour before, had witnessed for himself the enraged look in Husam’s eyes when the older man had called him unworthy. Surely the young sayedy could not have... With a cold thrill of horror, Abed realised whose blood was coating his fingers.

Husam licked his lips nervously. 'The doubt on Abed's face quickly gave way to alarm, as the servant recognised the implausibility of his story. Panic began to well within Husam at the realisation that he could not explain the blood covering his hands. Instinctively his hand moved to the knife at his belt.

Abed backed away. "No," he said, hoarsely, moving to flee.

Quickly, Husam grabbed hold of the back of the servant’s head and punched his dagger into the side of Abed’s throat, pushing the servant to the floor while he moved his grip to clamp his free hand over the dying man’s mouth.

Husam felt Abed gasp against his restraining hand, felt the man cry out in vain into his palm.

“I am sorry,” Husam murmured as the servant’s strength failed him. “Nothing must stop me seeking justice for the murder of my Aludra.” He fought back the disgrace he felt at killing once more, trying to ignore the angry raging of his conscience.

Pulling his knife clear of Abed’s corpse, he wiped the weapon on the servant’s dressing gown. A tortured groaning suddenly filled the room and, for a moment, Husam thought it was the spirit of the servant come to haunt him.

As the young arabyan turned to locate the source of the sound, the ceiling overhead gave way, the wood weakened by the fire. The thatch of the roof above fell through the hole, the dried pitch igniting instantly and fuelling the blaze, which began to leap with renewed vigour. Husam was in danger of becoming trapped by the hungry inferno.

Husam cursed, wrapping his scarf around his face to try and block out the smoke that was beginning to overwhelm the room. Coughing, he dove through the flames, their heat threatening to blister his skin even through his clothing. He searched for an exit, disorientated by panic. He pushed through the burning thatch, great flames leaping as he disturbed the smouldering wreckage. The sleeve of his leading arm caught fire, though Husam paid it little heed. He could see a point of exit, and, even though doing so plunged him further into the inferno, he headed towards the rooms’ broad window, praying to Ormazd for protection.

The flames paid no head to the young arabyan’s words.

They licked at his clothes and skin, even as they greedily devoured the dry wood and opulent drapes within the chamber. With a distressed creaking, the ceiling finally gave way completely, burying all beneath it in burning thatch and timber.
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~CHAPTER NINE~

Postby greywulf » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:22 pm

Juliana watched as the centre of the house fell in, an eruption of flame and smoke leaping from the hole as the inferno within found fuel from the debris. Gasping in alarm, she sprang towards the building, only to be held back by one of her fellow servants. Howling angrily, she struggled to push him off.

“Let me go!” Juliana screamed, eyes wide with distress. ”The sayedy’s and Abed are still inside!” She fought against the grip of Jacob, the cook’s helper. “We must help them!”

“They are already dead, Juliana!” replied Jacob, who gently but firmly restrained the frantic woman, letting her beat at his chest in frustration. “There is nothing that can be done, even if they aren’t!”

Sobbing, Juliana sagged against Jacob, clawing at his chest feebly. “But,” she whimpered, “Abed.. My Abed…”, before her legs found their strength robbed from them by angst, and Jacob found himself supporting the grief-stricken women.

The whole household knew of Juliana and Abed’s midnight trysts, their burgeoning relationship being the subject of many a bout of late night disapproving gossip among the kitchen staff, Jacob included. But now, with Juliana clutching at him with her tears soaking the front of his nightshirt, the young kitchen hand dismissed such scandal from his mind. Jacob let her weep against him, turning slightly so the fire was presented to Juliana’s back, lest the sight of the building collapsing anguish her further. Cradling the woman’s head against his chest, Jacob watched the destruction unfold.

The pitch of the thatch, though wet from the earlier rain, was proving to be welcome sustenance for the hungry inferno, which was now easily beyond the point of quenching. The blaze was out of control - the stone outer walls of the building acting like a chimney and trapping the fire.

With a rending groan, the roof’s support timbers gave way and toppled into the inferno with a burst of sparking embers, the resulting blast of heat singing Jacob’s face, though the servants were stood a safe distance away, along with those fellow citizens of Brionne alerted by the smoke and fire now gathered with them.

“By the Lady,” Jacob murmured. “Nothing could have survived that.” Guiding Juliana gently away, he left the group of his former

***

“Husam. Open your eyes, my love.”

Slowly, Husam did as he was told. He winced as a blinding glare assailed his eyes, forcing him to squeeze them shut again. Why was it so bright? The last thing he remembered was... Fire. There had been a fire. Hadn't there? Groaning, he rolled over onto his front and, his arms trembling, he pushed himself, tentatively opening his eyes once more.

Husam's mouth gaped open. Where was he? As his eyes adjusted to the brightness, he felt his stomach lurch. What was this place?

He was kneeling on sand. Pure sand, dove-white. Husam struggled to his knees and grabbed a handful, letting it dribble from his clenched grip. He watched the fine granules trickle downwards, noting how cold they were as they slipped away, almost like ice. There was no wind. Where was he? Opening his hand, he let the sand fall, hearing it hiss briefly as it touched the ground. He looked around him.

A pure desert stretched as far as the eye could see on all sides of the young arabyan, its dunes perfect mounds that rolled towards each horizon like a bleached sea. Nothing tainted its faultless surface, which seemed to glow under the light of the sun that hung overhead.

“What is this?” Husam murmured. “Where am I?”

“Husam. Come to me, Husam.”

Husam turned at the whispering voice, finding a lush oasis where but a moment before there had been nothing but white sands. A clear water pool lay within a vegetation-rimmed depression, and Husam could see a pavilion pitched amongst the shadow of the palms on the far side.

“What trickery is this?” Husam asked. “What sorcery?” There was no answer to his question; the only sound the rustling of palm leaves, as though a breeze was stirring the foliage ahead of Husam, though he felt no wind on his face.

Cautiously, Husam walked forwards the tent. His hand moved to his belt, searching for his blade, and found nothing. Husam looked down in confusion, more at his unconscious action then the lack of weapon at his hip. He did not have need of a scimitar nor a dagger. There was nothing here that could threaten him, yet he had still sought to arm himself.

“You were not always so eager for a fight, my love.”

Husam looked up to see Aludra stood before him, her body draped with silken scarves that moved gently as if teased by some ethereal breeze. In her arms, the arabyan woman was gently cradling a bundle of muslin towels, which was moving gently as she held it to her breast.

Husam’s strength was robbed at the sight of his murdered wife, and he fell to his knees at her feet, realisation finally welling within him. He was dead, killed by the fire that had consumed the town house. He looked up and found Aludra gone, the oasis now a place of decay. The pool was dry, the vegetation rotted and diseased.

“You are not worthy of such serenity, young master. Not yet.”

Husam turned at the snarled words and found the figures of Sahib and Abed stood a short distance away.

Behind them, the pristine desert had turned to corruption. Insects and carrion beasts blanketed the landscape, while the sky had turned to a raging inferno. Flames licked at the tops of the swaying palm trees of the oasis, their leaves began to catch alight at the fiery touch. The fire and desolation did nothing to diminish the horror felt by Husam as he watched Sahib approach.

The old man lurched slightly as he walked; the great wounds hacked into his torso hindering his movement, the gashes weeping as though still fresh. The blood soaked the front of the old man’s already sodden robes, exciting the flies and maggots that swarmed amongst the folds of the soiled garment. As Sahib stopped close to Husam the smell of smoke and decay choked the young arabyan.

“You have set yourself upon a path of death and destruction, young sayedy,” Sahib slurred. “One that has now come to define you. The death of that insignificant girl has been your downfall. You are unworthy in the eyes of the One True God now.” The old arabyan motioned to the wounds ravaging his body. “You have murdered, Husam, driven by rage and emotion.” Sahib chuckled. “There can be no peace at the Great Oasis for you, not unless you redeem your sin.” A mocking smile played at his lips. “If I were you, I would resign myself to an eternity of suffering in the afterlife, rather then enduring the disgrace of failing once again at your retribution.”

Husam snarled in anger before unsheathing both his scimitar and dagger and closing the gap between himself and Sahib. “If not for your taunting, you jackal, if not for your goading, I would not have slain you.” He pressed the curved blade of the knife to the old arabyan’s already wounded throat. “Even in death you seek to deride me. But you will not sway me from my end.” Stepping back, Husam eyed Sahib with distain. “Vengeance will be mine. I do not care how much suffering I shall have to endure, or how much pain. I will earn my place at the Great Oasis.”

Sahib’s dead face split in a cruel smile. “Oh yes, young sayedy. There will be pain.”
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CHAPTER REMOVED

Postby greywulf » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:23 pm

CHAPTER BEING REWRITTEN
Last edited by greywulf on Wed Mar 30, 2011 8:14 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Vengeance

Postby Gaius Marius » Tue Mar 22, 2011 2:15 am

I've read the first two chapters Grey, looking forward to how his marital bliss comes to what happens in the opener.
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Re: Vengeance

Postby greywulf » Wed Mar 30, 2011 8:17 am

I do appologise that it took a week to reply, Gaius, I have been incredibly lax when it comes to the forum as of late.
Hope you enjoyed the rest of the story so far, Id love to hear what you thought of it :D

I have removed Chapter Ten, so I can rework aspects of it. I remember that when I first posted it I did so hastily, and rereading it, I feel that it can be so much more then it is. So, Vengeance will restart with a new Chapter Ten, hopefully very soon.
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~Chapter Ten (Redux)~

Postby greywulf » Thu Apr 07, 2011 10:20 am

And pain there was.

Husam screamed as fire suddenly ate at his flesh, as the oasis burned around him, the palms bursting into pillars of flame that seared skin even through his clothing, the inferno surrounding him on all sides.

“What is this trickery?” roared the young arabyan, throwing off his burning cloak as he did so. “I demanded to seek my revenge, not to be condemned to torment before I have had chance to redeem my wrong doing!” His hair caught fire, the acrid smell catching in Husam’s nostrils. He frantically slapped at the flames to extinguish them.

Sahib’s mocking laughter could barely be heard over the roar of the inferno. “Demand? You demand? You are in a position to demand nothing, young sayedy. I on the other hand am in a position to grant nothing."

The disdain in the old arabyan’s disembodied voice angered Husam, and he balled his fists and shook them in impotent fury at the raging flames. “You promised me retribution, you son of a jackal!” he snarled.

“I also promised you pain. That I have given you, and I can promise you will feel still more on your way to salvation, if you still wish to walk that upon that road. But I can not grant you your vengeance. That is not within my power. No, ibn Hammad. You must look to another for that agreement you seek.”

Sahib’s voice was all but drowned out by the howling flames, but Husam could still hear the dead arabyan’s remark, even as he crawled across the sand, seeking escape from the fire. He must look to another? And where was this other, who must he barter with for a second chance? The inferno intensified, the heat burning Husam’s eyes. He screamed, as he fell to his knees and pressed his scalded face to the sand the sound one of pain and anger.

There was the sound of splintering wood as the trunk of a nearby palm finally weakened beneath the onslaught of the firestorm, and it fell. It landed beside the crawling Husam, burying him in a shower of burning foliage and bark. Pain engulfed the young arabyan and he fought his way from beneath the carpet of flaming debris, his back aflame as he emerged. Husam staggered towards the pool at the oasis’ centre, seeking some relief from the agony of his burning skin.

The water of the lagoon had turned to blood, though Husam paid this fact little heed. He plunged desperately into the water, diving deep beneath its greasy surface to extinguish the flames that burned his flesh. Blood filled his open mouth, the coppery liquid silencing his cries of pain as it rushed into his gullet. Husam choked on the taste and he swallowed involuntarily. Warmth flooded his body as he gulped the blood, the sensation banishing any revulsion Husam felt. The blood was life, the very thing he craved. The young arabyan filled his stomach greedily, enjoying the surge of power.

Energized, Husam twisted around, seeking the surface of the pool and finding nothing by blood above him. His shout of anger was swallowed by the crimson ocean, and he looked down, finding nothing but blood beneath his boots. What sorcery was this, which had trapped him within this endless sea, and for what end? Was he to remain here alone forever?

But he was not alone here in this sanguine abyss.
Last edited by greywulf on Thu Apr 07, 2011 6:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Vengeance

Postby Raziel4707 » Thu Apr 07, 2011 10:44 am

It's about tucking fime!

Ha, it's been ages since I read any of this, but this update just dragged me right back in with a smile on my face. Great update and I like the direction you've decided to take. Vengeance shouldn't be a nice thing, and you've really gotten over an unpleasant and arcane image of what he's having to do if he wishes to seek it. Really pleased to see this going again mate, keep it up! More! MOOOOOOOOOOOOOOORE!
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Re: Vengeance

Postby Tyrant » Thu Apr 07, 2011 11:05 am

Really enjoyed the most recent update, this is some of your finest writing I think. More, please!
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Re: Vengeance

Postby J D Dunsany » Thu Apr 07, 2011 5:12 pm

Good stuff, grey!

Can't find much wrong with it (apart from 'distain' when you mean 'disdain' - and the last sentence of the penultimate paragraph needs a question mark) and the action's ramping up quite nicely. I think I can probably guess where this is going for poor Husam. (I say 'poor', but he's done a fair few things in previous chapters which mean we can't exactly give him our entire sympathy, hasn't he?)

All the best!

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Re: Vengeance

Postby greywulf » Mon Apr 11, 2011 8:23 am

:D Thanks for the comments guys :D

I'm glad you liked the new update, it was a retooling of what had been done before, it's been such a long time since I started writing Vengeance that what I originally wanted to do with it has changed. It changed from a simple WHF Batman style actioner to a darker tale, and now Im trying to make it even darker still, im the boundaries provided by the Bolthole of course, Mr Admin type JDD sir :twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :lol:
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Re: Vengeance

Postby J D Dunsany » Fri Apr 13, 2012 11:00 am

Grey, I know you're busy with other stuff, but it's been almost a year since you left Husam wallowing in that sanguine abyss. Any chance of some more? (Writing, that is - although more wallowing could be good. :) )

Regards,

JDD
JDD story of the moment: Glory
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J D Dunsany
 
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Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2011 10:00 pm
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