Flames (The Fall of the Archer)

Flames engulfed my vision. In a way I was thankful. I didn’t have to see my sister burn.

The morning after the battle had been depressing to say the least. Although we had risen victorious, the death toll was extremely high, weighing heavily on our victory. Cries of absolute misery could be heard throughout the day as loved ones were discovered laying lifeless in the field.

It was dark now. Most of the legion was quiet. The only sound that could be heard was the occasional crackling of the fire. Will stood beside me, the rest of the archers were standing a little farther back, still dressed in black cloaks. All paying their respects to my sister in silence.

Gradually, my companions drifted off toward camp. Will was the last to leave my side. As he turned to leave, he hesitated.

“Fight until your last breath, strike when others have fallen, and never give up.” he recited quietly, and walked back towards camp.

Fight until your last breath, strike when others have fallen, and never give up. The words filled my mind. My vision began to blur, and a wet…something fell on my cheek. I looked up, inspecting the night sky for a signs of a storm. It was clear. I blinked. More droplets fell. I was crying. It felt good to let out the pain that had been growing the back of my mind all day.

I stood there for hours, crying and talking to Liz, filling her in on all the things I had neglected to tell her.  

“I love you. I know I didn’t say it very often, but I do.” I was quiet for a while, as my mind recited a litany of, never give up, never give up, never give up. The flames had died down, embers glowing, and small flames flickering here and there. Liz’s body reduced to ashes.

Suddenly, a hand covered my mouth, and a cold metal was pressed against my throat. A knife. I didn’t dare move.

“You will come with me. You will be silent. If you make a sound, I will not hesitate to slit your throat.” came a hoarse whisper. I could feel my attackers hot breath on my ear.

The hand left my mouth, and I was pulled up by my arm. The blade never left my throat. Another pair of footsteps shuffled towards me, and a I felt a sharp pain in my arm. Confused, I attempted to turn around, but the sliver of cold on my neck reminded me that one wrong move would end very badly. A feeling of nausea filled my head, and my now sluggish brain realized what had happened. An injection, I thought. Adrenaline shot through me, as panic overtook my body. My breathing quickened and my vision became hazy. I concentrated on staying awake.

“Don’t resist.” A voice sang near my ear. Laughter followed. I could feel the drug pulling me into unconsciousness.

“She’s gone.” I felt the blade leave my throat, and I blacked out.



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