Sabit stood over Kehnan, her spear at his throat. The big man rolled helplessly in the dirt, dazed from Sabit’s last blow.
The bandits and villagers had walked away from their labors upon the rampart and were now gathered in a broad circle around the two figures. Their eyes were wide with curiosity and fear—hungry to see what Sabit would do to a man who had dared to raise a hand to her, fearful to see what fate she might decree for one whose life was so utterly at her mercy.
The Bandit Queen turned her eyes from her foe to take in the gathered crowd. The villagers had wagered their lives—and the lives of their children—on the hope that Sabit would be a better ruler than the cruel King of Junjai. The bandits—accustomed to the casual cruelties and spectacularly bloody punishments of their previous king—looked upon Sabit with a resigned bloodthirstiness.
The man in the dirt let out a sound that was part-cough, part-laugh. “You had me fooled for a moment, Mongoose. With all your talk about justice and fairness and being a good queen, for the briefest flicker of an eye, I thought you might have changed. But I see now that you are the same savage-hearted beast you always were. You may not remember you past in your mind, but you remember it in your bones, as surely as I do. There is only one way forward for you—I have fought you for my life and I lost. Wet your spear in my blood. Pierce my heart and show all these people exactly what kind of queen you are.” Craning back his head, Kehnan arched his neck in blatant offering to Sabit’s spear tip.
Her face a mask of fury and frustration, she lifted the spear high.
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Wayfarings of Sabit: Betrayal is copyright (c) 2017 by Michael S. Miller. All rights reserved. New chapters post every Thursday. You can support this and other stories on Patreon, https://patreon.com/michaelsmiller, or at http://ipressgames.com/fiction/.