Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Ow! (01/07/10)
TITLE: The Harder They Fall
By c clemons
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"Ow, Ow" he groaned. Mornings were the worst, everything hurt and today was no exception. Stretching himself to get the kinks out, he started his morning ritual of stretches and applying heat to his body. Fortunately his tent was away from the other soldiers. He did not want the men to see the pain on his face that his aching joints caused. He was glad that they had complained that his snoring was like rumbling thunder so the captain insisted he camp away from the main garrison. He had acquired a balm from Midianites traders, that was suppose to help soothe pain from twisted and swollen joints. This warrior could not bare it if someone thought "Their Champion", as they called him, had weaknesses.
It was said that he was six cubits and a span (over nine and half feet). He was not really sure, his brother Lahmi was at least a span taller. They were descendants of Anak and the Anakims a race of giants that the Israelites had tried to destroy years ago. He was a Gittite from the city of Gath where his ancestors had settled after the battle long ago with the Israeli leader Joshua. Both he and his brothers did this ''champion" work for the Philistines, not only because it paid well but it was a personal vendetta for them against the Israelites. The stories had been handed down through the years about that long ago battle, and ever since practically every inhabitant of Gath still sought revenge against the Israelites.
"Today, I will have victory over my enemies!" he swore. For forty days he had went out to the valley of Elah and taunted the Israelites daily by defying their army and demanding that they send their best out to fight him. In response there had been nothing. They were yellow-bellied cowards he had concluded. Finally the Israelites had met their match, in one man, "Me!" he roared. "Yes, I am he that is undefeated in battle and if it pleases the gods I will be victorious again this day!" Just the thought of revenge could always get his juices flowing. He applied his balm and called to his armor bearer to help him with his armor.
The coat of mail was five thousand shekels of brass. He wore greaves of brass upon his legs, a target of brass between his shoulders and on his head a helmet of brass. His spear was the length and width of a weaver's beam. And the spear head weighed six hundred shekels of iron. As usual his stomach rumbled with hunger, the anticipation of a good battle always made him hungry. He would eat after the battle if there was one. In fact, he would take the spoils from the enemy's camp and enjoy a victory feast with their King Saul's food and drink!
The other soldiers heard his roar and began preparing for battle just in case. They really did not believe that today would be any different, there was none greater or mightier than their champion in the valley. Their preparation was more for show but all wanted good vantage points to see how the enemy would respond on this fortieth-first day of taunting.
In full armor and his armor bearer carrying his shield he created quite an imposing figure. As he went by, the Philistine army parted the way like the sea. They cheered and shouted to him how he was the greatest! The biggest! Their champion! He soon forgot all of the aches he had endured earlier, this adulation was what he lived for.
Unfortunately Goliath did not know he was going towards the biggest "ow" of his life.
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