Welcome to my writing corner. Here you'll find stand alone stories and tales that stretch much longer. You'll find tales ranging from medieval adventure to modern stories about real people with a sci-fi twist. If you like/hate what you read, drop me a line and let me know.

You can find the stories grouped by the labels just to the right.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Origins - Kione

This is a little different from the usual, but I'm going to post a couple origin stories for some flawed or just flat out bad guys.

Kione slipped the dark, flat knife from its leathery case and examined it carefully. One edge of the dagger curved in a delicate wave, at first glance it appeared soft and decorative; the type of blade a noble woman may carry with her when walking alone. However, serrated steel teeth decorated the back of the blade, each triangular tip honed to the sharpest point possible. The sacrificial knife was forged from shadow iron, a type of metal only found in the deepest crevices under Mount Manshart. It was said that shadow iron leaked into the world when Zehir and Bahamut met in battle centuries ago. Zehir lunged at Bahamut and drove his poison dagger deep into the Silver Dragon’s back, poison from the blade mixed with Bahamut’s blood, spilled onto the ground and slid into the deepest reaches of the Earth. Kione ran his careful brown eyes over every inch of the blade, flipping the bone handle between his fingers; there could be no impurities or imperfections in the blade for the ritual to succeed. He slipped the blade back into its light brown leathery case and began the rest of the preparations for the night.

As Kione began mashing the dark blue and purple herbs needed for the ritual his mind began to wander back to his dark christening. The trembling hands of a ten year old boy, black robes draped over his wiry frame. A circle of robed figures standing around him, casting shadows that waved in the candle light. His eyes wide as a beautiful woman bore the shadow iron blade; she dipped its tip into a purplish blue liquid as she took the boys forearm. Her ruby red nails, the cool soft touch of her fingertips made the boy shiver. The smell of lilacs as she pulled him close, her deep green eyes teasing him of what was to come later. Then the smell of searing skin and the biting pain as she dug the knife shallowly into him, carving a “Z” shaped serpent into his young flesh. He winced in pain, a slight yelp escaped his young lips, but he bit back the anguish as his eyes shot over to his father. The man stood, watching, expressionless as his boy came of age. The branding complete, the woman let loose his arm, he wanted to pull it back quickly and cradle the pain away, but he did not want to appear weak in the eyes of so many. Kione pulled his arm back slowly, his jaw set tight as the pain seared through to his bone.

The woman’s emerald eyes watched him approvingly as she extended her cool hands out and grabbed his shoulder gently. With practiced experience her fingers pulled apart the knot in his robe and in a single motion the black cloth fell to the stone floor, leaving the boy standing bare. She reached to her own shoulder and repeated the quick motion, the black robe parted and slid off of her curved, soft body. Dried lilacs filled his nose as she pressed her soft, cool skin against his, his stomach twisted into knots causing him more pain than a thousand searing knives as her hand slid down his bony chest and –

“Is everything prepared?” a grating voice pulled Kione from his memories.

“Yes, Adrian, everything is prepared. The ritual will go according to tradition; everything is in its place”.

Adrian was a solid man, in his youth he was muscular, though recent comforts had made his midsection start to grow. Adrian had grown up poor, his parents’ devout worshippers, outcast from their small farming village, they came to the city. In his youth he made little money selling elixirs and love tonics to young women hoping to nab the man of their dreams. Until one day an older noble woman came to him and asked for a concoction to poison her unfaithful husband, Adrian refused until she named her price. The poor young man could never refuse the full purse of a noble woman. The poison did its job well; his reputation among the upper class spread and his coin purse quickly grew fat. Now he was almost as rich as those he sold his designer toxins to.

“Will your wife be attending the ceremony?” Kione’s voice was direct and concerned.

“I doubt she will attend, she has been… ill.” The round noble’s voice was laced with self doubt and deceit.

Kione turned slowly towards the man, “Do not speak falsely to me Adrian. I know Maura has strayed. The ears of Zehir’s faithful have heard her objections to the ritual; the tongue of Zehir has tasted her doubt. While you bare no blame in the matter, be sure that you handle your wife or the other faithfuls will.”

The chubby man nodded slowly, “She will not be a problem Kione, I will deal with her.” He exhaled deeply and clutched Kione’s shoulders. “Just make sure my daughters christening goes well tonight.”

Kione nodded slowly as Adrian turned and left the room. He knew well enough that the noble would not deal with his wife and he was fully prepared to disappear her. Many were the sheep of the world who never knew the dark embrace of Zehir, he faulted them not. However those who tasted the rapture of the serpent god and recoiled should be dealt with. For now, he would need to attend to the final preparations the ritual.

The room was still the same as when Kione was a boy. Tall, fat candles burned throughout the room, wax dripped onto the grey stone floor. A circle of black robed figures stood around a young girl who had barely seen ten winters. This time it was Kione’s hand which held the ceremonial knife, it was his eyes that studied the trembling scrawny body before him. His heart raced with excitement as he now understood the pleasure he once saw behind the woman’s green eyes so many years ago. The shadow iron tip of the dagger dripped with purple blue liquid as he artfully carved the serpent god’s symbol into the girl’s forearm.

The girls scream tore through the soundless room for a moment before she bit her lip so hard it drew blood. The branding over, Kione pulled his hand over the girl’s trembling shoulder; his fingers found the knot in her robe and wrapped around the fabric. He hesitated for a moment, allowing the anticipation in the room to build, he could feel the excitement building within himself, a warm tingle started in his thighs and pulsated upwards. With one deft twist of his fingers the girl’s robe dropped to the floor in a shadowy pile. His brown eyes studied her for a long moment as he reached up to untie his own cloak.

A crash erupted at the door; the sound of steel hacking through flesh filled the air, less than a moment later the dry wooden door splintered under a heavy axe. A dozen royal guards rushed the room, long swords drawn, hungry for blood. Behind the guards stood a pudgy middle aged woman dressed in green, her worried eyes fell upon the nude child.

“Maura! You traitorous witch!” one of the robed figures spat.

“Silence!” A peppered haired guard shouted, his voice full of contempt. “By order of the Royal Guard you are all under arrest!”

A robed figure clutching a silver dirk leapt at the guard. “By Zehir, you will not take us alive!” The pepper haired guard side stepped the cultist and in one fluid motion, cut the man in two.

“Any other takers?” He challenged.

The eyes of the faithful fell upon the cleaved body of their comrade and their zealotry faded. With gritting defeat they sank to their knees and succumbed to the steely might of the Royal Guard.

Cold shackles clamped around Kione’s wrists, his memory lurched backwards for a moment to the cool touch of the green eyed woman and the scent of lilac. A guard’s shove pushed the scrawny man back into the present. As he was pushed from the room towards his certain death in the gallows, his brown calculating eyes flashed quickly to Adrian and Maura, the faithless would feel the serpents bite.

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