Elijah is the main character for my upcoming book, Dawn’s Keeper. This is a short story about him in the twelfth century, waaaaaay before he meets Dawn. Each Wednesday I’ll update with another chapter. I hope you enjoy.
Thick and cloying, the scent of blood wafted on the slight breeze, drenching the fragile fragrance of the flowers. Sunlight glinted off stained chainmail armour, and the damaged bodies within proved the inadequacies of the steel rings. Magical bolts seared through the metal, swords pierced any chinks and enraged slave demons tore them apart like they continued food.
Elijah closed his eyes for a moment, gripped the handle of his throwing axe and released it behind him in one continuous move. Decades of practice lent him speed and accuracy. A sickening thud told him he’d hit his mark.
He spun around to assess his target. Leather armour failed to protect the other man from the deadly blade. The axe bit deep into his chest, and he dropped to his knees. Blood gurgled in his throat before spilling from his lips.
One of the King’s enemies had sought to make a name for himself by taking out Elijah The Bloody. The would-be assassin had snuck up, thinking to catch him unaware. Stupid fool. While Elijah’s magic hadn’t unlocked for him yet, he didn’t mean he was defenseless. Countless battles and wars had honed his instincts to a sharp, lethal edge.
Of course, overconfidence led to mistakes and possible death.
The now dead man hadn’t been alone, merely the scout to distract Elijah. Three more men crept among the dead and other men fighting desperately for their lives. Bending down, Elijah yanked his throwing axe from the first man, and hurled it under his arm before straightening. Another direct hit, this time across the throat.
One pulled his sword out while the other drew a complicated pattern in the air. Bloody hell, a mage. Elijah kept his sword in his left hand. It made no difference which one he used, both would equally deadly. His dagger, however, he preferred to use with his right, and he withdrew it from its sheath.
“Fulgur,” the mage intoned, pointing his fingers at Elijah. Electricity shot at Elijah, flickering across the metal of his armour and dancing along his blades. He smiled, and charged at the mage whose eyes widen in horror. Most would be on their knees from that spell, writhing in pain. Elijah wasn’t most people. He was a rare breed of mages.
“Resistant!” the fighter shouted as he, too, charged forward. His sword flashed in the sunlight when he raised it high, and he brought his shield forward to cover his body. He intercepted Elijah, protecting the now vulnerable mage.
Relishing the challenge, Elijah laughed, sweeping his sword upwards to catch his opponent’s blade. The resulting hit sent a jolt along his arm, threatening to numb his limb. He ignored it. It was a familiar feeling.
Holding the enemy’s sword at bay, he twisted his extended arm and reached with his dagger, searching for exposed flesh. The tip disappeared past the shield, and then was knocked aside. His enemy caught on before Elijah could do any damage.
The mage continued expending energy. He cast several spells on his colleague, increasing the fighter’s speed and strength of his hits. Elijah had no such spells.