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Gilded men and their pride

By Aarbs123 All Rights Reserved ©

Fantasy / Drama

Blurb

In a world where bitter betrayal is what it takes to help others, There is no room for sorrow. There is no room for coping with ghosts of the past. There is no room for love. There is no room for honour. There is no room for anything but survival and living for as long as you can. In Grilmair, many secrets are hidden and stowed away, some are known and seen by the blessed to be cursed and some are kept hidden away where they belong. Blood is what hands you an empire and bloodshed is what earns you a title.

Weakness

With a hand tucked behind each of their backs, the two sparred. Forged metal clashed against one another and anticipation lay thick like smog in the fresh sea air. Grunts left the mouths of the two people on the balcony, while the tasteless wind blew their hair and pulled their cheeks back.

The lavish balcony top that they sparred on overlooked the home that they knew so well; thin, green vines that curled around ivory, white pillars just like how lovers intertwine their bodies together. Gentle blossoming flowers that gleamed the shade of the sparkling waters that outstretched past the courtyard far below. The water was rippling sweetly, coaxing itself to the pace of the wind, the sea foam bubbling over each peak of each wave.

Dangling beneath the proud pillars rested a banner stitched with a red stag. The minuscule details of gilded gold eyes were lurched into the sockets, watching like preying felines. Their footwork was like watching a cobra twist and lurch gracefully, dancing swiftly to the beat of their master's pungi.

The larger one leaped forward to catch the other out, but missed as the opposition ducked, letting the whipping sound of the sword rush past, steel skimming the air. The larger figure writhed with his sparring sword, but the younger darted and ducked, disappearing every moment or so.

The sparring was soon to be over, as the older man was kicked in the back by his apprentice to the floor with his sword flung across in front of a fountain, where a large, black, stone fish was spouting crystalline water.

"Father." Their eyes met and she helped the large man up from the floor, he heaved a little and they didn’t breathe a word to one another. Shink, shink, shink, the girl's father sat at his table, sharpening his monstrous sword on the whetstone set down in front of him. The sword was a marvel, with a blade engraved with prayers to the fates in his own hand; four feet long, a hilt of gold that swirled and curled over, under and around itself to create spiralled edges. Along the cross guard rested miniature red beryl gems and black pearls, only found at Red shore, one of the busiest harbours in Eastern Grilmair. The blade was always sharp, it had never seen a dull day.

Their heads whipped around as the elephant, polished oak doors had almost splintered open with the hinges straining to show an advisor, two guards, and a man restricted in chains, his chin and eyes planted to the floor. A black strip of cloth covered his eyes.

"You requested for him, my lord." The large man was left, his hair falling out of place on his head and the remnants of sweat were left to bead on his forehead.

"Get out." The girl turned to leave, counting to three in her head before hearing his voice, "Stay, little lady." Her boot-steps stopped, squeaking on the floor as she did so. The guards shut the door, the near silent sound of a key and lock sealed the pit.

The huge man stood in front of the man, his chest touching the head of the blindfolded man. Slowly, the girl untied the blindfold and let the man open his eyes to meet the unruly gaze of the Feower.

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