Part Five

By: Adam Janus

***Chapter seven***

Thus far Krog had stayed out of the fray watching from a distance. It’s not that he wanted to be an observer; he had no choice. Master had told him to hold back wait for a sign. Disobedience was not an option; the hulking brute knew that even if he thought about disobeying, he would be greeted by immense blinding pain which usually started behind his eyes before rolling throughout his skull like thunder bringing him to his knees before the blessed darkness of unconsciousness.

Krog spat in disgust. Being a slave in a sewer stinking of humans and their foul waste was no way for a proud orc champion to live. The victor of many challenges to his title, he was now reduced to lighting candles and disposing of corpses. There were small rewards; a drop of drool dripped from his tusked mouth at the thought of the marrow extracted from Creed’s latest victim. It could not compare to the cheers and admiration of his warlike people when he bested another challenger or led his tribe to glorious victory in combat.

Watching the battle intently, he had to admire the intruders’ ferocity especially the human. Krog watched the display of strength as the large man wrestled one of the huge vicious rodents holding it by its teeth no less! Krog then cringed as the bellowing dwarf came to the human’s aid and hacked the rat nearly in two.

He heard the female elf yell something and picked up the distant sound of marching. The female then conjured a ball of fire and hurled it into the adjoining tunnel. “Is that Krog’s sign?” Krog asked himself, his hand reaching to the bone handled scimitar on his back. When he felt no pain behind his eyes, he answered his own question: “That sign.”

Skeletal warriors emerged from the adjoining tunnel where the female elf threw the fireball and more rats scuttled from the shaft on the other side. The orc wouldn’t have to wait very long; the two elves and the dwarf retreated away from him as the big human cut off from his friends was stalking right towards him brandishing his sword menacingly. “Good,” Krog said aloud, “Krog, fight now.”

Preferring to meet the human in hand to hand combat, Krog placed the bone tipped spear he was carrying on the walkway and drew his sword from his back. After taking a couple of practice hacks loving the way the human thigh bone handle felt in his big hairy hands, the orc pulled the visor down on his bronze helmet and walked toward the advancing human.

They met with a ringing clash of steel on steel that reverberated loudly through the damp tunnels. Sparks flew wildly as the combatants hacked and slashed at each other savagely each taking hits as well as giving them. Momentum went back and forth; first one giving ground, then the other; but it was Krog who was slowly gaining the advantage. His full armor allowed the orc to take more hits while the serrated edge of his scimitar poked through Dev’s light chain link in numerous places.

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About the Author

Adam Janus lives in the Pocono Mountains of northeast P.A., with his wife and three kids. He has been writing for several years, but only recently began to submit his work for publication. His work has appeared in a number of small press and semipro venues, and he has been a staff writer for "The Silven Trumpeter" gaming magazine for almost three years. When not writing, Adam can frequently be found carving walking sticks, reading, watching Yankee baseball...or changing diapers.

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