The City of Steel

The City of Steel was a great and terrible sight to behold before the Almighty struck it down with fire and stone. Now, it is naught but a shadowed ruin, and is home to the godless and desperate. No honest folk dare venture into it, or anywhere near it for that matter. But Khindr was no sort of honest folk, and for that reason, and many others, he found himself before what remained of the City of Steel's western gates.

Welcome home, Khindr, you miserable wretch, he thought to himself.

Slowly, he shuffled through the ruined gate, obviously reluctant to embrace the place as his hew home. Once he was through the broken archway however, he assumed a quicker, though still relatively slow, pace. He passed only two tall buildings before he was stopped by a group of rough-looking individuals.

"Hey there, stranger" said the smallest of the pack. "What brings you to our glorious City of Shit?"

"He looks like shit himself," laughed the biggest and dumbest-looking one.

"I've been exiled from all the Free Realm. No choice but to come here," Khindr answered, annoyed.

"Hey now, ain't so bad. Cheer up, chump, you're in good company now! We Reekers are always lookin' for new recruits. Whacha say to joining our little band, eh?" asked the small one.

"Yeah, we Reekers like little shits like you," said the big, dumb one.

"Shut up, Borl. You're just a big turd with legs y'self," growled the small one.

"I'll have none of your business. I don't seek the company of you or your ilk," replied Khindr, now angered and disgusted by the Reeker men.

"That was uncharitably said, friend," said a third, skinny man, clad in black.

"Yeah! you gonna pay for insulting Reekers," said Borl.

"Now, now, hold ye' blades friends," the small one soothed. "This little shit here doesn't know just who he's dealing with. Probably thinks us a bunch a chumps. We a bunch a chumps, lads?"

"No, we certainly ain't," said another man in a large hat.

"Right. So let's give our friend here another chance. Why don't ya give us a right and proper apology, eh? Friend?" the small one coaxed.

"How about I give you this instead," Khindr said just as he threw a dagger from beneath his cloak into the black-clad one's stomach.

The small one cursed and started to draw his longknife, but Khindr was on him in a flash, stabbing straight through the man's throat with his sword. Borl was bellowing and the one in the hat was readying his own throwing knives, but Khindr was already moving again. He kicked the one in black in the face as he was trying to rise and danced around Borl just as he was fumbling with his club. With Borl in the way now, the man in the hat made to move around him, but Khindr slammed into the big man, knocking him off balance. Borl tumbled into the one in the hat, and before he could recover, Khindr stabbed him in the back with another knife and followed in up with a slice to the throat. Borl was still flailing about on the ground as Khindr causally walked over to him and stabbed him in the eye.

The one in black was just making to rise once more, but Khindr kicked him down again and shouted, "If any one of you scum come near me again, I'll hunt down every last one of you and kill you slowly. Understand?"

The black-clad one nodded jerkily and then tried his best to drag himself away from Khindr. Khindr left him there and continued on toward the center of the city.

Welcome home, you miserable wretch, he thought to himself once again.

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