This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.
Here you see two men sitting at a table in a pub. One man is short in height but lean with a scar on one side of the face. The second man is tall and broad with muscles with a thin trimmed beard round the yaw and a tattoo on the right upper arm in the shape of a dagger.
They drink together a pint of black beer and laugh on each other’s jokes or pleasant memories they share for the past few years. How come they laugh and drink together is a question itself of fate or destiny. In a nutshell, what brought them together?
How the lean man received a scar that cuts across his left eyebrow in two, down across his eyelid and cheek is one of the following question as well as with the tall man’s tattoo.
What makes them so special? Is it plainly their appearances or is there more?
The short lean scared man is Lorcan MacDonald. Do not let his short height fool you. He can go at situations head on and direct but he is loyal to the end and wicked fast as lightening. He knows his ways with words, daggers, bow and arrow. He may appear calm with a devilish smile on his thin lips but that can quickly change once uttered the wrong words and you are caught between the wall and him at your collar. In other words, he has a temper. Aside from his personality he is the ladies-man although having a scar on his face and does enjoy their company with a pint of beer or even a glass of whisky when he gets an opportunity.
The tall muscular man with the beard and tattoo is Angus MacGregor. He is the eldest son of the Chieftain (head of the clan). He knows his ways with swords, axes and hammers, basically any big and massive weapons. He may appear tall, strong and severe but there is also patience and gentleness under that hard muscular exterior. Not to mention he has a crystal clear conscience and can be very serious, sometimes too serious.
Back to the question from before about fate or destiny, I have a story that tells how these two different men met and became close friends. It starts with a moment close to death…
“He deserved to die! After all what he has done not to me but my family! They were slaughtered! Everyone who was dear to me. Everyone! The entire clan!” Roared a short built man with a scar cutting across his left eyebrow and eyelid and cheek horizontally. His hands were bound together by cold metal shackles behind him at the back. A broad chocolate-brown leathered hood covered partially the man’s face. The hood was sewn onto a matching brown-leathered vest without sleeves. Under the vest he wore a lose olive-green long-armed shirt. His lose hunting trousers were also in the same green and partially covered by matching brown leathered boots covering his calves.
Many people around him roared and shouted for his blood to be spilled or becoming a head shorter.
The man stood still and calm on the platform that was raised from the ground. Due to the people surrounding it, it looks identical to that of an island at sea. The hooded man felt no guilt and no regret. He had done what he wanted before leaving this world. Calmly he turned with no hint of fear to the executioner. He wore a black-leathered mask and wore only black-leathered trousers and boots. His upper torso was bare, revealing his broad muscles, shoulder and his tall statue. The executioner held a broad and long bladed sword in his big hands but the sharp blade slightly drilled into the wooden floor of the platform. Prepared and waiting for his duty.
“I’ll be looking forward in seeing my family again.” Whispered the scared man and knelt to the spot where many before him were beheaded. He felt calm and prepared to face the unexpected, what is also a part of life, death.
The executioner walked to the man and removed his hood. Long dark straight hair rolled out from the hood. They were dark brown and longer than to his shoulders. “Lorcan. Lorcan MacDonald.” Gasped the executioner surprised as he recognized Lorcan’s face.
Lorcan looked at him with knitted eyebrows, confused and somewhat surprised that an executioner is surprised of him. There is nothing special about Lorcan or the executioner.
“Get on with it! He deserves to die! Aye! He killed the King! Cut him down!” Called few people angered from the crowd.
“You heard them. Make it quick.” Noted Lorcan with a devilish smile and bowed his head.
The executioner took a deep breath and lifted his sword above his broad shoulders. His eyes focused to Lorcan’s bare pale neck. Many people grew silent with excitement, holding their breath, waiting for the sword to fall. With all his strength the executioner threw the heavy sword down at full speed and cut the chains of Lorcan’s shackles instead of his head.
“Hide in the cells. I’ll confuse the others.” Whispered the executioner once his sword was pointing to the ground.
Without another word Lorcan gave a firm push to the executioner to make it appear so for the crowd as if he tricked and sprinted off. He snaked his way past many people while many were shocked in awe to acknowledge what just happened. “Stop him! He had a trick up his sleeve! Get him!” Demanded the executioner, acting to be innocent, looking to the guards who stood at their posts. They blinked as if awoken from their slumber and soon started to run and search feverishly for Lorcan. The crowd panicked and ran to many different directions, which made for the soldiers harder to find. “Check the grounds and beyond the walls! He couldn’t have gone far without a horse!” Called an officer to his men. Few random men from the crowd decided to join with their personal weapons at hand.
“Lieutenant, what shall I do?” Asked the executioner confused to the stressed officer.
“You wait here. We will bring him in for the last time.”
The executioner gave an acceptable nod while the officer paced off with his men. Soon the executioner walked over to the cells across the other side of the courtyard. The cells are below the ground and lit with few torches for light. With his personal lantern lit he checked in every cell, if Lorcan might be in one of them hiding. It resulted that nothing was different from before. Confused and concerned where Lorcan could be he headed to his personal cell, which is his chamber. Just as he entered his cell a cool blade was his throat. Before he could collect that it is none other than Lorcan, his mask was removed. Shoulder long curly red hair were visible and a short-trimmed red beard.
Lorcan scanned the tall man carefully and stepped before him. The man was a good head taller than Lorcan but did not make him fearful. “Who are you and why did you let me go? How do you know my name?” He hissed with narrowed eyebrows.
“Me name’s Angus MacGregor and I have heard of your terrible loss. Killing you does not bring back the dead and the King was never a person I would remain loyal to. Especially when he threatened my clan to obey. I see the same hate you have for him as I do only yours is greater due to the loss of your clan.” Explained Angus calmly while looking down at Lorcan.
Slowly Lorcan removed his dagger back to his boot and took few steps back to make space. “MacGregor. The name is familiar.” Lorcan paused and stared to the ground a moment in thought and soon looked up with a broad devilish grin. “You have my thanks. I owe you my life for what you have done, Angus MacGregor.” He ended his sentence with a small bow of thankfulness.
Angus gave a short doubtful scoff and shook his head. “Owe me? What makes you think that your escape is over? The troupes are searching as we speak.”
Lorcan crossed his arms contented and still grinned. “Indeed but looking into the cells is the last resort and then at that time I’ll be long gone with the wind.” Lorcan noted with pride.
Angus sighed. “Is it just me who takes it all too serious or is it you whose less serious?”
Lorcan chuckled and took a seat on a small wooden stool. “What if it is both? You know my story, Angus MacGregor. What more have I got to lose but my own skin?”
“Says the one who would give his life for mine in return for what I’ve done few moments ago.” Recalled Angus.
“Alright. You’ve made a fine point there."
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