Road of Woe: Five

Sabit seized the captain’s horn and raised it to her lips. The note sounded pure and true, ringing across the valley like a song from the heavens. She raised her spear and troops rushed to form ranks beside her, weapons raised to strike. Sabit extended her left hand and Lahamu, her shield bearer, strapped an oblong shield of wood and bronze to her forearm.

Sabit watched the line of enemy troops make their way up the hill. Their eyes shone unnaturally bright in the darkness, blazing orange and red with the glow of the fires rampaging through the camp. Her eyes probed their lines of armored bodies for some weakness. Each soldier out of step could be the fatal flaw that would turn this bloodbath into a victory for Sabit.

The invaders marched up the hill, butchering every straggler they could find. Those that were too quick to be overcome by the wave of sharpened bronze hurried to Sabit’s lines, swelling her ranks. When the attackers reached the fallen body of Aruru, each of them jostled for the chance to anoint their sword blade in the blood of their most hated foe: the captain of Ghabar. They shoved one another aside, their skin gleaming unnaturally in the firelight.

The tumult over Auru’s corpse rippled through the enemy’s lines. Sabit saw her chance. Over her shoulder, she spoke to the older woman, “Fall back, traveller. This is not your fight. Find me when the battle is through.”

Sabit nodded to Lahamu. The shieldmaiden lifted the silver captain’s horn to Sabit’s lips. Three short, sharp notes rang across the field like fury of the righteous. The Ghabari troops stepped forward as one. Their lines straight and true, they picked up speed. Shields held high and spears held low, they charged downhill, meeting the enemy like a wave of death.



Wayfarings of Sabit: Road of Woe is copyright (c) 2017 by Michael S. Miller. All rights reserved. New chapters are posted on Monday and Thursday. You can support this and other stories on Patreon: or