Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of "Don't Cut off Your Nose to Spite Your Face" (without using the actual phrase or litera (02/14/08)
TITLE: THE EXILE
By mick dawson
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Dehoran stood beside the throne. He stared concerned at the Blue River Guardsman before him. The elite soldier of Nusalle stood resplendid in his mail hauberk and deep blue tunic.
The orange crest of the snarling dog emblazoned boldly across his broad chest.
Long jet black locks flowed from beneath his horned helm. There was strength in the stormy eyebrows and brown eyes, but the expression contradicted him. He looked broken, weary as he stood before the new monarch with his double edged, long hafted axe in his hand.
“Are you sure you wish to abdicate the throne to me?” the king asked.
“Aye.”, Muttered the previous monarch.
Dehoran mounted the stairs and seated himself, staring after the retreating back of the Guardsman.
“May an unknown God walk with you!” he called after him.
There was no slowing of movement. The burly figure continued to trudge out of the throne room. He wandered aimlessly down the main thoroughfare of the city and into the back lanes of the poorer quarter. A physician was closing for the night. He tossed the surgeon a few coppers for an armful of bandages and tucked them into his belt.
“How much for your mirror?” he enquired.
The physician looked to the copper oval mounted on his wall.
“It is merely for personal use.”
“Would you accept a gold coin?” the Guardsman asked.
“Done!” beamed the man and snatched at a ‘guton’ flipped in his direction.
With mirror in hand, the Guardsman continued his walk. A thief passed him in his meanderings squinting closely.
“What is your name?” he asked.
“I have forgotten.” He said sourly.
“Ah so you are the forgotten one.” He taunted, smiling as he shook his head.
The burly figure turned the corner into an alley. The light of the full moon slashed across the narrow lane. He stood the mirror on top of a barrel and looked at the man he most hated. There was hardness to the visage that stared back at him. The broad nose, the hard mouth and the clean shaven jaw seemingly carved from granite.
The reflection sneered at him.
‘What was strength without love?’ he thought.
There was the man that ignored his wife and unborn child. There was the man that neglected his kingdom and now they were all gone.
Turning away from the reflection he cursed and battered away at the offensive face with his fists. Pain rippled across his visage. The more he felt, the more it spurred him on until he dropped his arms, weary with the effort. He looked at his image again.
It was marked with little trickles of blood but it was not obscured enough.
Tearing the bandages angrily from his belt, he began to wrap his face until nothing but his eyes showed. He looked down at the exposed flesh of his arms and covered them too. In fact any area that could be seen.
He looked back at the image finally satisfied. He felt no longer worthy to be looked upon, or even fit to be among others.
Newly bound like the lepers, he trudged the streets once more. He had not gone far when he decided to drop the last of his coins in a blind girl’s cup. She sang so heavenly, bringing a tear to his eye.
“Bless you, what is your name?” she queried.
The once king thought back on the taunting stranger.
“I am…The Forgotten One.” He said.
“Is that all the name you have?”
“Aye.”, he answered as he trudged on. “It is all the name I deserve.” He muttered to himself.
“And it is all the name I will have until the day comes that I learn to love others as I should.”
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