Think you have what it takes?
That was the only thing Kendrick had to say to enrage the grossly muscled, oily skinned warrior to tear his axe from a holster on his back and swing it in a furious rage. Kendrick was prepared for the attack, he had baited many people before with the same tactic, all of them assuming his thin and frail physical appearance would be easy prey for their barbaric physical prowess.
The axe missed Kendrick’s midsection by inches, with reflexes that would impress a tiger the thin man rolled along the side of the axe closing the distance between him and his target. The glint of metal in the campfire light on small daggers he slipped out from under his robes were the only indication that his target was in dire circumstances.
Before the Orc could even recoil from his attack, two painful intrusions were felt entering the the sides of its torso, though the daggers were small, their locations carefully placed between the ribs puncturing both lungs simultaneously which caused the Orc to drop its weapon and fall to its knees struggling to draw a breath.
Kendrick wipes the green ichor like blood from his daggers on the orc’s cloak and tucked them away as the Orc continued choking on lungs filling with blood. The expression on its face was one of shock and pure atrocious anger, the creatures dying thoughts probably focused on how such a small and thin puny human could have taken its life. Orgad the Mighty, chief of three tribes had raided four human villages, killed and maimed more than ninety humans in the past six years of his violent life and one of the smallest he encountered ended up being his downfall.
Kendrick himself was never one for killing, he detested spilling blood preferring to gamble, blackmail, or even bribe his way out of a deadly situation instead. His life was spent collecting lore and spreading tales and information to the places he traveled. He was a story teller, a rogue, scoundrel, jester, entertainer, lover and even a gambler but not much of a killer.
So as the Orc was about to fall with its final struggles he met the beasts eyes and bowed to it gracefully, almost apologetically before turning his back on the creature and walking to pack up his scattered belongings around his makeshift campsite. He would not be sleeping tonight after all, so he decided to pack up and continue his journey to the small fishing village of Newport in the middle of the night.
After packing his belongings he rummaged through the Orc’s belongings relieving it of a few handfuls of gold and silver coin it would no longer be needing as well as an odd wooden figurine that appeared to be some sort of idol, too delicately crafted too have been orc made and surprisingly unscathed given the nature of the creature possessing it. The idol was made from what appeared to be birchwood and was carved in the shape of what appeared to be an elven woman, it was beautiful capturing the grace and beauty perfectly and given the hatred orcs have for elves, Kendrick was even more intrigued as to why it was in the orc’s coin purse.
He decided that he would make a point of learning where the idol came from, what it meant when he arrived in Newport if anything it would make a good tale to tell his audience when he performed at some local taverns in the future, and as he walked at a steady pace toward the village which was about a sixteen hour journey away he kept rolling the small wooden idol over and over between his thumb and forefinger.
And that my friend’s is how the story is just beginning
Kendrick picked up his mug of ale and ingested a copious amount before setting it back down on the round wooden table full of nicks, gouges and dents. His audience of about sixty five patrons were collected around him listening with various degrees of interest. Several women were staring into his face entranced by his natural charisma barely able to recall what he was saying while young men barely out of their boyhood were pent up with excitement already dreaming of the adventures they would hope to have someday.
This is how Kendrick made his living and it was a decent living in his opinion. He would travel the lands seeking adventures and then share his tales with people all over, he was known as Kendrick the storyteller or Kendrick the bard in several parts, but when word was announced that he would arrive in a town or city he tended to bring in a following of people to learn what new adventures he had to share.
Kendrick would go on to share his story over the next several hours, his audience would be engaged as if held transfixed by magic. One woman sat in the back of the bar looking at him in the way only a someone in love can look. Her hooded robe covering almost everything but the bridge of her nose and her slender hands which had a single gold band worn around her left ring finger.
She loved this story because this was her story you see and she loved at how Kendrick told it with such warmth and enjoyment that every time he recanted the story it was like he was falling in love with her again and again. She sat back and watched eager to hear the rest, but also just as eager to retire to the inns room and spend the rest of the evening in Kendrick’s arms.
I wrote this story while on my flight back to Phoenix last Thursday, I hope you enjoyed it. Please feel free to leave me a comment, let me know if you thought it was lame, or enjoyed it. I am always interested in feedback from people and this is only the second story I have published on this blog so I am curious if my readers enjoy my stories as much as they enjoy my poems.