Short story debate
Debate Rounds (5)
I accept. Before we get started, I'd like to thank TalkingWaffle69 for creating this debate, and I hope that he has fun, because I know I will ^_^
Over to my opponent :P
I saw the life drain from his eyes, but not before he looked up at me with a look of sorrow. Why? Why does he look towards me with sorrow? I was the one to end his life, I was the one that defeated him and robbed him of his breath. He choked on his blood one last time before he went limp. I closed his eyes and continued on towards my destination. Many men have been hunting me down ever since I killed the man they called Rufius, the King of the Mountains. Rufius had raided my village with his men just for the mere fun of it. He slaughtered all in his path and took all of the woman and children as slaves. Yet...no one did anything to stop him because he provides most of the known world with coal and gold coins.
I stood up to him. Yes, me, and who am I you ask? Well, I am Vego Kelinice, but most people refer to me as the Dragon Tamer. TBC....
I guess this doesn't require a title, since I don't have one.... Anyway, so here's my story!
"Please, my little Jay, don't go! Please don't leave me! Just pretend that you have fallen ill, or that you have injured yourself working in the fields, but please stay with my for our first Valentine together!" Bethany begged her beloved.
"I want to stay, Beth darling, do you think I want to leave you so soon after our marriage? Of course I would give anything to stay with you, I truly would, but when the army calls, I must heed their every bidding. That is one of the conditions of this cruel, cruel government. And you know this. It was a deal that we made when we moved here, when we were still hopeful for a bright future. There is truly nothing I can do." Jonathan replied.
Bethany sat down hard on the loveseat, overcome by grief already at his departure soon to come. Jonathan sat down gently beside her, at loss for ways to comfort his beautiful devastated wife.
"My precious Jay, I--"
"I know," he replied, "I love you too."
Beth sighed, a comfortable yet gloomy silence falling on them. She stood up suddenly, and pulled away from Jonathan's muscular arms and strong hands cupping her face.
"Go, love. Go, but be safe. Then when they are done with you, come back home to me. Come back home where you belong. Come back with.... come back with my heart intact please.... I don't know what I would do if you come back in a casket.... And Jay? Know that--"
"I love you," they murmured simultaneously.
Bethany's mouth twitched slightly, her eyes shining with unshed tears. They hugged one last time, and the lovers walked out the front door into the stables. There, a beautiful midnight black mare waited patiently, tail swishing with ease. Ebonique nudged Beth with her nose, almost reassuring her that it would all be okay. Beth gently kissed her neck, weaving her hands through Ebonique's thick mane.
"I'll go prepare the food you will need for your trip, you just take care of grabbing sufficient clothing and a blanket for Ebby, okay? And remember to gather enough hay for my beauty, and ration it just enough every night, and--"
"Don't worry your pretty head, my darling Beth. I know what to do; it is not like I have not left before," Jonathan laughed, drawing Beth in closer to himself. She leaned into his embrace, but they both knew she wasn't fooling either of them. Her heart wasn't in it, and they both knew she would stress herself out worrying about him day and night.
"Prepare today, leave tomorrow morning?" Bethany begged.
"Tomorrow morning at the latest, or I will be penalized," Jonathan conceded.
Bethany left Jonathan to gather all his equipment by himself as she went back into the house under the guise of preparing food.
She sat down on a stool in the dining room, one hand on her stomach. How would she tell him? How *could* she tell him? He was leaving, with little chance of coming back. She couldn't tell him unless she wanted him to die. He had to fight in the battle with his whole head, not one part in the fight and one part worrying about her.... or their new baby.
In the plains below the mountains.
"But father, you promised you would take me hunting." My daughter Alitea said to me as I was about to walk out of the door.
"I know dear, perhaps Marcus can take you. King Rufius demands that we assemble today. Next time, I promise." I kissed her on the forehead.
"Mark! Take your little sister hunting please and be careful!"
"Yes sir!" my son yelled from his loft.
I walked out of the door that day unaware that I would never see my family again.
I ventured on up the mountain towards the Kings fortress. I was one of his greatest warriors. I had slayed many beasts singlehandedly, even dragons.
When I had reached the fortress everyone else was already there. I hail from a small village on the base of the mountain so I am always late. The king was going to make an announcement.
"My comrades! Today we take action!" the king shouted and everyone grew with a viscous roar, all of these men had a thirst for blood.
"The peasants at the base of the mountain refuse to turn in their share of this years crop!" My heart sunk at his words.
"As you all know, all of the villages on the mountain distribute an equal amount of crops to feed you fine men when you are away from home and in battle, and they think because they had a bad year that they get to keep all of their share to feed the villagers!"
The whole crowd roared with angry chants and words.
"So if they will not give us their crops, we will give them blood!"
The whole crowd roared again.
I sprinted down the mountain as fast as I could to warn the others...
But here's my story!
Bethany watched with tears in her eyes as Jonathan walked back into their cozy shack. She quickly got up and gathered bundles to hold his food in, as he absentmindedly walked around with no purpose. He glanced at Bethany, only to find her eyes shining with unshed tears.
"What's wrong, my sweetling?" he asked, concern bright in his eyes.
"I just.... I"ll miss you, my Jay, that is all," Bethany replied, trying hard to keep the emotion out of her words.
"But of course, my Beth, I will miss you too. But why the tears? It is not as if you will be losing much.... It's only me," Jonathan uttered, trying to calm Bethany down, trying to reassure her, trying to make their last night together a happy one, with little regret.
"Ohhh," cried Bethany, "You don't understand! But.... it's better this way, that you don't know, that you have less to worry about," Her tears were trailing down her face, scaring Jonathan. Why was she being so irrational when usually she was the more logical of the two? What was going on?
"Beth, darling, you know if there is anything that you have to say to me...." Jonathan trailed off.
"I'M PREGNANT!" Bethany wailed, "I'm pregnant and the father of my baby is riding off to his death in a few hours' time! How is this something to be calm about? Are my tears illogical and unwarranted? Can I not be emotional for once? I"m pregnant and my child shan't even have the opportunity to meet his father!"
"I...." Jonathan was speechless, "I don't know what to say, but that I will do everything I can to come back to you and be the father that I've always wanted to be, and to be the husband that you deserve to have." He wiped Bethany's face gently with his handkerchief.
Bethany nodded, sobs stuck in her throat. Her hands came up to hold his close to her heart.
That night, they slept restlessly, tossing and turning like the tides of their sea of turbulent love, untamed and untamable.
In the morning, Bethany woke up early to make Jonathan his favorite breakfast-- eggs, sunny side up; two slices of bacon, fried until the grease was gone; black coffee with two sugars, still steaming.
As Jonathan mounted Ebonique, he handed Bethany something he had been saving up for a long time.
"My father's golden watch piece," he said, "The last piece of him that I have. As a promise."
"A promise to come back," Bethany finished for him.
He nodded gravely, but with hope in his eyes.
Bethany watched all the while as her precious Jay rode off into the sunset, hand on her stomach protecting the last piece of him that she had left.
Five months passed, and Jonathan still hadn't come home yet to her.... No letters from him--nothing. What was she to do?
I was near the village when one of Rufius's men caught up to me. He kicked my feet out from underneath me and I went tumbling down the path. My head hit a rock and everything went black.
I awoke a few hours later to the smell of smoke and burning flesh. I tried to sit up but the pain shot through my head. After a few minutes of agony I managed to open my eyes and stand up. My vision was blurred and my head was spinning.
I looked towards the village and saw a figure running at me with a sword in the air. A soldier. I drew my own sword and waited for him to come to me. He ran up and brought down his sword like a hammer, which I used to my advantage. I spun myself to the right as he drove his sword into the ground. As this happened I brought my sword around and cut deep into his lower back, severing his spinal cord. He tried to scream out in pain but only the sound of him gurgling his own blood.
There were screams of women and children coming from the village and swords and shields clashing. I went towards my home and I prayed to the gods that my family was unharmed.
I approached my home only to find it in flames. I kicked down the door.
"Alitea!" I shouted. "Marcus!" No answer.
I searched the house. There were dead soldiers on the ground with arrows sticking out of them.
"Alitea?!" I shouted again but still no answer.
I then saw Alitea's bow on the ground with a fresh pool of blood laying in it. My heart sunk from my chest.
I heard something coming from the loft. I quickly climbed up the loft to find Marcus on the floor with a sword in his chest and barley clinging to life.
I held him in my arms. "Marcus," I said with a squeaky voice and eyes full of tears. "where's Alitea?"
Marcus coughed up some blood. "They...they took her...." he choked. "the soldiers...they took her....I did all I could...I failed to protect her...."
"No my son," I interrupted him. "you fought well, and I will avenge you and save your sister."
The life drained from my sons eyes. Even in the heat of the fire I could feel his body go cold. I took the sword out of his chest and folded his hands over his wounds.
I then drew my sword, ran outside and screamed at the top of my lungs.
***5 Months Ago***
What to do, what to do? He was stuck at an impasse with himself. On the one hand, he wanted stay with his beloved Bethany, yet on the other, if they were found out, he would be sentenced to death and she would be sold to a rich but likely abusive man as a servant, or worse, as a toy to be tossed aside when finished with her. The only thing that may save her would be their baby, if she showed signs of pregnancy before they were done playing with her. But of course, there was no way he could let that fate befall his darling wife. He would have to leave fight and the come back for her after the war.
But what if he died in battle? The rule was that any woman without a man to keep her "in check" would be sold to the government. Any woman whose man had gone off to serve the country would be given six months before being sold, but must be able to produce war papers on demand. They assumed after six month if he had not returned, that he had died for a good cause. His wife and children would be sold. No soiled women were allowed to remarry, so she would probably be sold as a slave or something similar. The children would probably receive similar fates, unless a female child was within 3 years of marriage age. If it was her brother or male relative living with her, and she had no other relatives, she would be sold to a man needing a wife.
The risk of dying in battle would be far less than the risk of being found out that he skipped the calling. And the consequences would be far less severe also.
In any case, what else was there to do? They could try to run away, but there was little chance of getting far. Houses were checked at random and the borders were always patrolled at any time of the day.
Tomorrow morning, he would give Bethany the last piece he had of his father, to reassure her that he would come back, even though he wasn't so sure himself whether he would survive or not.
*Scene: dusty winds, rough ground, scratchy clothing, parched lips, dry skin, loud gunshots ringing, hot sun beating down*
"What can I do, but fight for my life, and fight for the freedom of my Bethany and our baby?" thought Jonathan.
Peeking out from behind a large felled tree that had been rotting for quite some time, Jonathan heaved his gun over his shoulder to fire at the enemy once more. He had already reloaded several times, and this was his last clip. After this round, he would be left defenseless.
He was slightly crippled in his left leg, as that was brushed by a bullet two months back, though it seemed to be healing quite well since. His fingers were bloody from having to crawl around like rats all the time. The older man hiding next to him reloading his gun stank like fish. Jonathan suspected he himself smelled similar. They had to catch their own food, as the food issued by the military had run out three months ago. They had run out of fresh water about four months ago. The stream nearby all but dried out from the terrible drought. He had left the love of his life five months ago. And just this month, he had been shot at, and had been shooting at strangers, all in the name of fighting for his country.
A country that he did not love.
A country that all but held him captive.
A country that sucked its people dry and gave everything to the wealthy.
Jonathan squeezed the trigger again, but his gun only clicked. Damn. He was out of bullets this time, meaning he had to either crawl back to the base on his elbows, or get shot at with no defense when the enemy line inevitably advanced on toward them.
Then one thought triggered in the back of his mind. One of the terms.
If he were to get seriously injured in war, he would be shipped back to his home town and given a sum of money for his services. To a decent hospital to be treated. To his beloved Bethany. But that was only if he was so seriously injured and not yet dead....
He looked over at his partner and saw him reloading his gun once more. He tapped on his shoulder, not remembering his name. Harvey, or Henry, or something.
"Will you shoot me?" Jonathan shouted, above all the ruckus in the background.
"What?!" a bewildered face questioned.
"I need to be seriously injured to be sent back to my family, so would you mind shooting me in my upper thigh? I'm a newlywed, and we have a child on the way. Please, I beg of you, shoot me...."
"You're crazy!" the man shouted back.
"I never said I wouldn't do it, son! I must be just as crazy as you are, but I know young love when I see it, and I know it should be cherished while it's still possible.... Brace yourself, child...."
A gunshot. A stinging pain. He passed out.
A/N: The next one will be in Bethany's POV! :D
Last round over to PRO!
All I could see was red. I was out for blood. I was gonna rip Rufius's damn throat out and feed it to the cave demons. He took my family from me. My wife went missing long ago, all I had was Marcus and Alitea, and now Marcus is dead, and Alitea is missing...
Rufius would still be up in his palace watching the town burn from afar. I started climbing back up the mountain, not wasting a second, to get to the top and cut the kings head off.
I arrived at the palace only to see guards still stationed at the gate. He knew I was coming.
I jumped at the guards with a bloodthirsty roar I ran at the guards. I brought my sword up and slashed the first guards throat and dodged the others sword and hacked his arm off and stabbed him in the chest.
I opened the gate and ran inside. I looked up and saw Rufius sitting on his over sized throne.
"Rufius!" I shouted. "Come down here and face me!" He looked down at me and paused before he spoke.
"Vego Kelinice...or should I call your Dragon Tamer? My finest soldier. Now why would you go off and do something so stupid? Now I have no choice but to kill you."
"You are mistaken Rufius! I am going to kill you!" I stared into his emotionless eyes. "But not before you tell me where my daughter is. Where is Alitea?"
"Probably being tossed around by every man in my army....but she seems to be used to having men inside her..."
My fury took the best of me. I picked up a spear on the ground from a dead guard and threw it as hard as I could at the king. Almost as if the whole world slowed down, I could see the spear heading straight for his heart until he jumped to the right and dodged it by the fibers of his cloak.
"You fool!" he shouted down at me. "I will show you why I am King of the Mountain!" he jumped down and became level with me. He drew his sword and I drew mine.
"I will have your head Rufius." I stared deep into his eyes and swung my sword at him.
We hacked and slashed at each other, cut and punched. This man was a great fighter. He was right, there was a reason he was the king.
I hit his sword out of his hands. I cut the back of his knee and he fell to the ground. I put my sword to his throat.
"Burn in the underworld." And I slit his throat and watched him choke on his own blood and watch the life drain from his eyes.
That is my story...so far. I have learned that my daughter Alitea was taken on a slave ship and sailed east. I will do all I can to get her back. Even kill 1,000 men....only 10 more to go...
I stared at the burnings orbs in front of me, asking me to pay up on my end of the deal that we had made two years ago. My baby. My baby that I had made with my beloved Jonathan. The devil wanted my baby. He promised that we could stay safe if I gave him my firstborn. But now I wasn't even sure if Jonathan was safe, and I was to give up my child.
As I stared into the Devil"s orbs with my impending doom in mind, my life flashed before my eyes: eating pastries with my Jonathan on his birthday with the icing smeared all over our faces; crying next to a bag of bones that held my mother"s hollow, lifeless face covered with cancer-riddled cells, before she fell into a deep slumber one last time; laughing with my best friend, mouths stretched into crescent moons, eyes glistening with tears of pure joy, because when we laughed together, it seemed like nothing could go wrong; running. It always came back to running. Usually, it would be undignified for a woman to be seen exercising in this era, but my Jonathan supported me, and what I loved to do. I would run for miles and miles and miles until I finally collapsed on the track, too tired to think, too exhausted to worry.
Before my mother got cancer, she always accused me of running far from my problems; maybe she was right. Maybe I thought that if I ran far enough, fast enough, long enough, I would outrun all of my issues. Maybe, they would give up waiting for me to come back and go bother someone else instead.
The last time I really, really ran, not from my problems, but for my personal pleasure, I felt the tendons stretching in my calves, my thighs tensing with energy, the wind pushing my hair back from my face. My clothes, usually baggy around my slim frame, were wrapped tightly against my body like a second skin. I do not stretch before running, and I ever understood the need for me to stretch when running was already my relaxing mechanism, something soothing in the whispers of the wind, with nothing holding me back from the freedom that I felt. I always start in a slow jog, quickly speeding up with no in-between pace, just my feet meeting the concrete; one step after another--always the same force pushing against the pavement, that was almost, yet not quite like the breathing of my heavy heart. Passed from the human world and into my own, I could almost taste the potential joy and freedom in front of me. But that was merely a passing fancy, a dream; I think I finally realized then, that I would never, and could never, escape the Devil in front of me.
"Take me, then, and keep my Jay safe," I say to the demon standing, waiting for my response.
He smirks at me, and runs his hand along my jaw, bringing my face closer to his. He opens my mouth with a spark in his eye, and his mouth opens to suck my soul from me, to take the life of both me and my baby....
***At the same time***
In two days, he would be able to see his beloved Bethany once more. He was being deported back to his home village, to be in bedrest for his leg to heal properly. Because of war wounds, he would never have to go back again.
Unfortunately, Jonathan did not yet know of Bethany's deal....
But when he finds out? Well.... He'll be devastated.....
THAT CONCLUDES MY STORY! :D
I know, I know, it was a bad ending and really really short, but I didn't want it to be anything too predictable, so.... please don't hate me too much haha :P I love to give plot twists and kill characters, so there's that XD
Anyway, now that I'm done rambling, VOTE CON! :D
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