Chapter Twenty-Two: The Iron Gate

Lorda listened to the mighty iron screech - two large metal gears being rubbed together by a vengeful God. The whole tower seemed to shake, only very slightly, but noticeably, even in the darkness.

Jonrah was numb from head to toe, and as he drifted in and out of consciousness, he could see blood sprayed all over his armour. He could taste blood in his mouth, and felt battered and bruised almost beyond recognition. As he looked to the source of the sound, Jonrah saw that a mighty iron gate was being opened. A doorway into the tower that had at first been invisible. It was now splitting down the middle, opening outwards right in front of him, and with the scream of metal came the shouts of men.

'What ... do we do?' Jonrah's hoarse voice whispered.

'You're awake!' Lorda whispered back, still glued to the spot. He suddenly realised this, and took several more steps. Jonrah put a hand on his arm.

'Let me go,' said Jonrah.

Although Lorda knew it was necessary, the blood boiled in his veins, pumping in his ears, deafening him.

Jonrah handed Lorda the shield, like he had done only minutes ago, but the circumstances were so very different now.

'I will save you,' Lorda said quietly, feeling his throat close up and his eyes well.

'You don't have to,' coughed Jonrah.

'I know. But I will.'


'Ah!' the first said sadistically as he caught sight of Jonrah. 'What's this? A stray Westerner? What would you be doing all the way out here... alone?' He cackled to himself, similar to the way the birds had.

Three more members of The Eden showed themselves, appearing from the shadows of the tower in their red armour.

Lorda looked from the wall in fear, unsure of whether the Easterners were intending to slaughter Jonrah on the spot or just leave him to die alone. Hopefully it was the second. Then at least he stood a chance of escape.

Jonrah was now totally at the mercy of these four men, and despite his numb body, he tried to wriggle away as one of the men drew his sword. This caused loud laughter from the three men stood behind. The first, however, simply stood on Jonrah's chest with a foot, pressing down so hard that Jonrah could feel his ribs straining... Bending... He let out a cry of pain. This made the laughter louder, and a smile appeared on the first man's face.

'Lock him up, lads,' the leader said, with a hint of evil joy in his tone.

Lorda watched helplessly as Jonrah was taken by the arms and dragged into the tower by two of the men who stood behind. The first and second followed, the first looking around to see if any allies of their prisoner were watching. He did not - thankfully - look too hard in Lorda's direction. He had made it to the wall just as he heard the voices of the men grow louder. He had not wanted to leave his dearest friend, but it would by foolish to perish with him, if that were his fate.

Jonrah's screams echoed through the tower, and Lorda could hear them travelling through the structure, echoing through the night.

You don't have to.

Jonrah's words repeated themselves in Lorda's mind, against his will.

Out loud, he said, 'Even the Gods themselves could not stop me from trying, old friend.'

The End

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