Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Write in the ADVENTURE genre (05/24/07)
TITLE: A NIGHT IN CALIET
By mick dawson
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A lone figure known to Caliet as the ‘Catman’ sat perched on the edge of one of the many roofs of the capital. Springing to his feet, he ran to the opposite edge of the roof top and leapt over. Gaining the next roof, he rolled to his feet and without slowing in momentum, continued to run along the edge. In like manner, he continued along the at full sprint smiling, barely able to contain the laughter at the exhilaration that he felt at this moment.
When a familiar roof ended abruptly before him, he dropped as lightly as a fallen leaf onto one of two twin balconies that jutted out from the wall. Darting off again, one foot gained the edge of the rail and the next stride ended with him bounding from the wall to land cleanly on the next balcony.
Leaping over the edge of the rail, his grasping hand takes hold of a nearby flagpole, resulting in him spiraling down to the street where he jumped onto the back of an abandoned cart and ran up the length of its draw bar. On reaching the end, he sprang to the top of a fence that borders one of the many alleys of the inner city. His stride continues unchecked until he caught hold of a hanging shingle, advertising an apothecary’s shop and swings up and over to perch on top.
From here he peers into a darkened alley where it meets one of the main thoroughfares.
The Catman watched as a heavily set Nezlander pushed through the doors of the ‘Jolly Frog’ tavern. As all his kinsmen, he was tall and broad of shoulder with many spiraling tattoos across his face.
He took the wine skin of a half besotted sailor in the street and drank as he continued on his way with no fear of retaliation as he turned the corner to see a pretty young woman begging a vagabond, armed with a dagger not to take her weekly earnings. He was to feel the point of the pirate’s cutlass from behind.
The woman offered her ‘thanks’ only to have the Nezlander pick up her purse and walk on.
Ahead of him in the next lane, many bandaged fingers thrust themselves through the iron grill in the cobbled street and heaved it aside. Spewing forth from the open hole in the lane came the bandaged lepers of the tunnels. With cudgels they hammered into the pirate. It took several blows to bring him to the ground before they dragged him away through the gaping hole in the street.
Thunder broke the relative silence and the heavens spilled water like a sheet.
Oblivious to the cold and damp, the lepers slinked into a closed lane where they met with the deadliest thing on Caliet’s streets… The Forgotten One.
Revolting, drooping faces with broken teeth and assorted lesions peered through the filthy bandages that did little to hide their hideous visages at the lone figure that filled the entrance to the alleyway.
Driven by panic alone, they set upon the silhouette with daggers and clubs.
The stranger lifted his long hafted, double edged axe in one hand with no more effort than a cane. In a bold swoop from right to left, three of them fell immediately.
A would be assailant lunged at him with raised cudgel from his right while another rushed at him from head on with dagger in hand. Dropping his axe, he pulled the clubman in front of himself as a human shield as the dagger flashed toward him.
The Forgotten One hurled the screaming leper into his comrade, to have them both collide with the wall and slip into unconsciousness.
Only one remained cringing in a puddle.
The silhouette was illuminated briefly as the lightening flashed.
A heavy set man looked down on him wearing the bedraggled remains of the uniform of the king’s elite, the ‘Blue River Guardsmen.’ His face and arms totally covered in wrappings to protect his identity.
“No! Not you! Not you!” he whined.
The last thing he was to see on this earth was the ex-guardsman’s booted heel.
…From his vantage point, Civa saw all that had transpired. He had heard that another hero patrolled the streets but had never seen him before. He nodded to himself and decided to head home early for the evening. It would seem that the streets of the poorer quarter were safe for tonight.
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