Tainted Victory – Chapter 11, Part 14 (Page-a-Day)

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Hugh came down behind Claudia. She extended a hand out. Hugh looked up to see the soldiers turn to her. Colt raised his arrow. He fired a bolt aimed at Claudia’s chest. She slammed against the wall. She pushed Hugh against the wall behind her with her arm. The arrow zipped passed them. It cut into her shirt. A line of blood rolled from the cut. Claudia held up her crossbow. She fired the arrow. It exploded near the group of soldiers. They flew back. Hugh places his hand along her wound. His arm lit up. The light moved to his hand. His palm flashed. The wound vanished.

“Thanks,” she said. She loaded another arrow and fired. It too exploded mid-air. 

The soldiers charged her. Goblet rose. He swung his mighty axe. He knocked a few of the soldiers away. They rolled away, staggered to their feet and continued their charge. Goblet took a step after them. A blade of air eradicated the stones by his foot. He looked over. Troforsect held his blade ready for a fight. Goblet nodded, turned, then swung his axe down. The two edges smashed in a ruckus clang. 

The soldiers ran to the stairs at a single, solid pace. Claudia loaded and fires arrows faster than normal, but to no effect. The soldiers took the hit only to get up and rejoin the fray. 

“I need to get to Evelyn,” Hugh said. 

“I know. I am working on it.” The closest soldier lunged in the air. She quickly twisted the butt of her crossbow around. She bashed the soldier in the helmet. He bounced to the group only to pop up. Claudia sighed. She reached for her quiver. A single non-lethal arrow remained. She picked it up. She assumed it was non-lethal. It was the one with marks she was unsure of what they did. She loaded it. The soldiers came again. 

Colt strung another arrow. He heard the injured calls of Olivier. He swiveled back to see Evelyn pressing her arm against his chest and digging her hand into his robe. Colt shot his arrow. It zipped through the air into the headrest of the throne. It missed Evelyn’s head by mere inches, possibly less. She turned her attention away from Olivier to him. “Let my master go!” He loaded another arrow.

“Might want to be careful how you phrase that.” She grabbed Olivier by the robe. She planted her feet then heaved him off the throne, onto the floor. She looked up to see the arrow coming right to her nose. She jumped out of the way. It grazed her arm and nailed itself into the headrest.

 He loaded two arrows onto his bowstring. “You cannot best me. You have no weapons.” He let the arrows fly. Evelyn jumped out of the way. Her body hit the floor She rolled on the ground to behind the throne. Colt heard her head knock against the back of the throne. “Hiding will not work either.” He loaded two more arrows to his bowstring, pulled it back until the string started to cut into his fingers, then released. The arrows stabbed through the cushioning of the thrones back. 

Evelyn felt the tip of the arrows break the wood behind her head. She ducked down further. She pressed her back against the stone floor. The tips protruded from the back of the chair. She rolled onto her hands and knees. She knew he was right. She could not beat him, but then again she did not have to. “Can you only fight from a distance. Seems like you think I could best you in a one-on-one fight. Why else would you keep shooting from a distance?”

“I do not need to prove anything to you.” He fired two more arrows right through the throne.”

“No, but you do have to prove yourself to your master.”

“What?”

“You think your master would be satisfied if you just killed me with an arrow? Please, he would want more from you!” She bawled her hands tightly. She had to make it work.

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