“So, this is the dangerous assassin who felt strong enough to kill me?” Koshunu’s mocking laughter made her nearly crazy in rage. She had hit him, the bolt from her crossbow hit his neck, she even saw the blood splattering, that couldn’t have been a trick of the eye!
But now he looked down at her from the back of his horse pointing at her with her own crossbow, that she threw away as useless weight during her wild try to flee.
Shion shuddered as he took a bolt and placed it carefully and slowly in the crossbow, her look run from side to side, but she found herself cornered. The few soldiers that survived the hunt wouldn’t be a big problem; she already had killed more of them during the past hours, the last one lying in his blood just some feet in front of her.
But Kishuru on his horse, now targeting with the loaded crossbow at her – she knew that there were no way out anymore.
“What are you waiting for, bastard?” Her voice was hoarse from fear, waiting for the final pain, when the bolt would end her life. “Or are you even to cowardly to pull the trigger, if you don’t dare to fight me with your sword!”
“So, now you want to use your sword?” He laughed, and without a warning he pulled the trigger. The bolt hit Shions left shoulder, threw her backwards with its force, when it shredded skin, muscles, nerves and veins on his way through her arm. Her kigushi fell out of the suddenly powerless hand, and for a moment her eye blackened from the pain.
“But I prefer now to continue your game. This is also some fun!”
Heavily breathing Shion pressed her right hand at the bolt in her arm, warm blood running down in a steady stream, but her eyes were caught light hypnotized by Kishunu who took a second bold and placed it with sadistical slowness in the crossbow.
A nearly gender smile, then the bolt rushed through the air, hit her left leg, penetrated the skin and the flesh like butter, until the tip left her thigh on the backside. With a scream Shion fell down to the ground still wet from the heavy morning rain.
Nearly blind from pain, she couldn’t even see the wooden end of the long spears that hit her head and face and send her finally down, ending her weak tries to get up again.
Shion spitted blood, full of pain and completely disoriented from the blows and her blood running down her face. Her resistance was only weak, she couldn’t reach her sword only some inches away from her hand, felt pressed down to the dirt from the heavy weight of the soldiers, a rope was bound at her ankles.
Posted April 5th, 2004
Suddenly Shion felt a heavy yank on her legs and she felt herself dragged along the ground with increasing speed. From somewhere she heard laughing like from far away, but she still was barely conscious, when her body was pulled forward by the galloping horse.
She tried to protect her head instinctively, the ground was muddy and not too hard, but several stones and thorny bushes scratched the skin from her arms and legs, whenever they touched the ground. She heard herself screams like from far away, a screaming that was stopped at once, when the cold water from the river filled her mouth and her lungs. She coughed, and gasped for air, tried to keep her head above the water, while her body was twisted and thrown from side to side, nothing but a toy of the pulling rope and the water.
It was and endless ride along the riverside, sometimes in the water, sometimes outside, and it was continued until she finally hung like dead on her side of the rope, tattered, the skin covered with mud dirt und countless small bruises und and bleeding marks. Even the amour made of flexible but firm leather showed some rents and revealed damaged sin and blood shimmering below.
Rough hands grabbed her rudely and pulled her upwards. Shion barely noticed the shimmering swords in Koshunus hand; his fast and precise blows that divided her armor from neck to waist. The cold steel slid on her skin, when he moved the parts aside to uncover her firm breast not without leaving some bleeding cuts on her skin.
“Nice, really nice!” He laughed and the steel touched her nipples, erected from the coldness of the water, that still run down her body. The March sun didn’t give enough warmth to dry this fast or to give her any warmth.
“And now tell me: what was the price, that makes such a cute girl to leave the bedroom and make stupid things? And – still more important: who did pay you this price?” He increased the pressure with the sharp tip on her nipple, until it pierced the skin and a small drop of blood run down the soft curve.
With some effort she raised her head, and opened the sticky eyes.
“Price? Do you think, I need money to want you dead?” Her voice trembled, filled with pain and fear she couldn’t hide at all. “All the dead people from Miazu made me to try this!”
“Miazu?” He looked like trying to remember and scratched his head.
“I remember,” one of the nearby officers replied grinning. “A rebel city that didn’t surrender in time. Maybe five or six years ago… it doesn’t exist anymore, and all the rebels are dead.”
“Hmm.. not all…yet!” Koshunus laughed again, playing with her nipple with the tip of the sword, her own sword how Shion now realized, while she swallowed a scream, when her skin was hurt again. “Obviously this child has survived, bad job, Hamanura; when I say all shall be killed, I mean ‘All’!”
Shion closed her eyes, the vision of the flames came back, the flames that filled the huge temple where all the people fled to, flames that killed everyone inside, the screams, the smell of burning flesh, hot air in the lunges that burnt people from inside as the flames did from outside. Vision of the corpses burnt so badly that she even couldn’t find her parents when she stumbled through dust filled air not even realizing how the hot ashes burnt away the skin of her feet and not understanding how she, the 14year old child had survived this hell. The old man that found her, taught her to fight, the years of training during day and night with only one goal – to kill this warlord who covered the country with flames and blood and tears. She remembered the words of her teacher:” The Gods must have their own plans with you, little Shion, so they allowed you to live.” But obviously the Gods had changed their plans, she thought bitterly, knowing that she didn’t have any chance to escape, no chance to kill this grinning bastard in front of her.
A sudden pain from her left arm brought her back to the reality. Kishuru was pulling the bolt out of her flesh, out of the wound, that started to bleed heavily again, when he twisted the tip of the in the shredded muscles.
Shi coughed for pain, but succeed to keep back a scream, looking at him with more despise than desperation, at least she hoped so.
Finally he hold the bloody bolt in his hand and grinning he penetrated the wound with his finger, scratching inside, and this pain was too much, she yelled for pain and kicked blindly, but her arm was hold in a strong grip that didn’t allow her any escape.
“I nearly believe you, child.” He grinned again, but to be really sure, I ask you again: Who had paid you for making this ridiculous try to murder me.” Coughing and groaning she stared at the finger thick branch burning at one end, that was reached over to Kishuru. Her arm was now hold stretch outward, and she would more easily break her shoulder than being able to move it an inch away.
“Don’t take it so hard: if you are telling the truth, then it is no torture, but a needed medicine to avoid an infection, right?”
The flame touched the wound, making her writhe and scream, but he didn’t stop, slowly pricked the branch further, until the still burning tip left her arm at the other side. Vapors of burnt flesh reached her nose, but she not even smelled it, was fully filled by the incredible pain, that turned her to a screaming piece of flesh, until she finally fainted.
Bur not for long, a bucket of cold water hit her, and she found herself lying on the dirty ground, burning pain filled her left arm, and made her nearly too blind to look at the burnt wound that was the reason for this pain.
Her leg was lifted, a foot in her stomach, kept her torso down and with terror in her eyes she followed Kishuru who now cared about the bolt sticking deep in the flesh of her thigh.
“You are knowing now the procedure, so I ask you again: Who paid you?”
She stared at him, shook her head in desperation, but she knew, that he would do it, no matter what she did or said, and then again the pain banished each rational thought, changed her to a screaming something… the bolt, his fingers in the wound, and again a burning branch… the pain was too much, she spitted blood and vomited bitter liquids, and couldn’t do anything to shorten the torture. The pain was even too much to allow her to faint another time, but finally it was over, left her spasming and trembling on the floor, and through tears she stared at the scorched edges of the burning wound on her thigh, even too weak to move any limb.