Chapter 6

“How about this, we'll challenge each other. Just the two of us. If I win, you will let us go. But if you win, I suppose you can take her,” Orxon said to the big Skakdi standing in front of him.

Veerah didn’t show any expressions, but she felt many different emotions. In one way, she felt offended that they seemed to talk about her more as a prize, a thing, instead of a person. Although the Skakdi in front of them had used pretty much those words to describe her, Orxon hadn’t said that she was just a thing, but still…

However, she thought she had somewhat of an idea as to why Orxon said this; it was purely so that he would only have to face this one Skakdi. Since he had killed four Skakdi, even if she hadn’t witnessed it and therefore couldn’t tell if those had been the weakest of them, their new leader seemed to be able to pack a lot of punch. So she decided to let it slide, for now at least. But she figured she would probably bring this up to Orxon later, if they managed to get out of this situation.

Their chances certainly didn’t look good. The big Skakdi had just kicked Orxon hard enough to send him to the ground several feet away, and once Orxon had gotten back up the Skakdi had punched him in his gut. He had collapsed on the ground, and the Skakdi had put one of his foots on his chest before Orxon could anything. The Skakdi lifted his hammer for the final blow, which with no doubt would kill Orxon.

Veerah knew she couldn’t let this happen, and while she couldn’t interfere directly, she knew she had no choice. She obviously didn’t want to be taken as a prisoner again, but she also couldn’t let Orxon die. They had just met barely a few hours ago, but it was something about him that just… Well, whatever it was she couldn’t really wrap her head around of what it was, except that he was important to her.

She closed her eyes, and concentrating on summoning her powers of Psionics. She could feel the minds of the three Skakdi and Orxon, and she plunged herself into the mind of the big Skakdi that was about to finish of Orxon. He surely was big and possessed a lot of might, but luckily his mind was nowhere as strong as his body, making it very easy for Veerah to get inside his mind. Given her powers allowed her limited mind control, she concentrated very hard on making the Skakdi drop his hammer, which hopefully would give Orxon enough time.

When she opened her eyes, the big Skakdi was about to deliver his final blow with his hammer, but instead he dropped it behind him. It worked! Veerah could see confusion on the Skakdi’s face. She saw that Orxon was also a bit confused at first, but he quickly took advantage of the situation and managed to push the Skakdi to the ground, probably with the help of his power of Gravity she thought.

Orxon quickly jumped upon the Skakdi, and she saw that he was about to rise his sword for the final blow. The scene looked very similar to the one just a moment ago but reversed. She quickly realized that Orxon was about to kill the Skakdi, something that was against the Toa Code. Sure, Orxon had gone rogue, but she knew he wasn’t acting like himself, not like his true self anyway.

“No!” she screamed. Orxon stopped his motion, and he looked right at her.

When Orxon saw the big Skakdi lift his huge hammer for the final blow, he knew it was over. He had failed his home island, his friends, and worst of all, he had failed Veerah. All he could do now was to close his eyes and wait for it to be over. He closed his eyes and braced himself for the blow that would end his life. It never came. When the Skakdi hadn’t killed him in the amount of time that would have taken normally, Orxon opened his eyes and saw something that he did not expect.

The Skakdi had dropped his big hammer on the ground behind him and he had a very puzzled look on his face, something that he realized looked very familiar. He didn’t dwell on it for long however, and with what power he had remaining he used to make the Skakdi a lot lighter so he could push him off. He picked up his sword and then he jumped up on the Skakdi, the tables were now turned and Orxon lifted his sword arm to finish of the big Skakdi.

“No!” he heard Veerah scream, and he looked immediately to his left. First he could see the two Skakdi that were accompanying their leader, and both of them had a shocked face. They probably had never seen someone beating the Skakdi under his foot in singlehanded combat. But what really caught his attention was Veerah; she looked at him with a look of determination under her mask. It was right there it all came back to him. All the lives he had taken, how much he regretted it afterwards, how he had promised to both himself and Veerah that this would stop.

As all this came back to him, Orxon looked back at the Skakdi on the ground. Just a moment ago, he would have killed him without a second thought, but now it was the last thing he wanted to do. He puts his sword against the big Skakdi’s throat, but he didn’t proceed with slashing it or cutting of his head. Instead he just stood there for a few seconds.

“Do you yield?” he finally said. The Skakdi looked back at him like he was going to give Orxon a big punch to the face, but he knew very well that he had lost.

“I… yield,” the Skakdi said after a moment of hesitation. Orxon sheathed his sword on his back and then he stepped off from the Skakdi. He still was on his guard, since his image of Skakdi weren’t really honorable. But, a deal was a deal, and the Skakdi just picked up his big hammer and walked away with shame. He probably never though he would be defeated by a Toa, Orxon thought. The other two Skakdi walked away behind their leader, whispering about something to each other where Orxon only managed to make out the word “mutiny”.

He looked at Veerah, who managed a light smile for him. He smiled back at her, but when he opened his mouth to say something, the words just didn’t come out. He really wanted to say something at this moment, but all he finally managed to say “Let’s just get going, before…” before trailing off.

“Before we’re stopped by another vicious group?” Veerah finished for him. He nodded back.

“There’s an inn just around the corner here, we’ll spend the night there and then get away from this island as soon as possible,” he said.

“Sounds like a good plan,” Veerah said. “The sooner we get off from this island, the better.” He definitively agreed with her on that part. The started to walk towards the inn and it was right there where it finally hit him.

He had spared a life.

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