Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Necronomicon Tales 2
Abdul Alhazrad cursed the luck that led him to this fate; he would die in a stinking tent listening to the nerve wracking cry of a baby in yet another tent. Alhazrad had been traveling alone, his camel laden with plunder he had found in various long forgotten tombs. He proved a tempting target for bandits. They had ambushed him as he crossed a dune and sank an arrow into his left side just below the ribs. He cut his treasure pack loose and flogged his camel like a madman, seeking to escape the thieves. The desperate plan worked, the bandits ceased pursuit to gather Alhazrad's goods and he rode on until the camel dropped dead from the many arrows it had recieved.
Weak and delirious, Alhazrad had wandered on foot for two days, then an outrider for a nomad tribe found him. The strange desert folk spoke no tongue that Alhazrad was familiar with but they were kind in their fashion; they had no method to treat Alhazrad's wounds so they merely provided him a tent that he would at least die in some small comfort and privacy.
On this third night the wound in Alhazrad's side exuded a foul odor and with each breath he could feel the sting of the barbed arrowhead, for certain this hot night would be his last.
The moon reached it's zenith and a cool breeze whispered through the nomad camp. A woman stood at the flap of Alhazrad's tent. She was tall and dark, clothed in gossamer robes that concealed nothing of her icy beauty. She asked Alhazrad's permission to enter and he gave it gladly.
She spoke, "Would you desire to live, Abdul Alhazrad?"
"What fool does not," Alhazrad replied.
The Dark Woman commanded, "Then take up quill and record my tale in the olden runes, for I know you as a sorcerer versed in such things."
The Dark Woman begin her story and Alhazrad could not have resisted even if he had the desire to do so. She dipped the quill into his oozing wound and bade him to inscribe the tale in his own blood. She began her story and Alhazrad wrote every word, pain and fear of death forgotten, replaced with wonder.
The Dark Woman told Alhazrad of the early days of man, she spoke of the wondrous place those first people were given and how the crimes of a few caused that place to be taken from them. The worst of the disobedient ones were cast out, cursed, and forgotten by the light. Doomed to wander forever, becoming monsters and breeding monsters. She spoke all the night through and the moon was almost gone when she finished her tale.
Alhazrad was fading fast and he feared the Dark Woman would betray him. But she spoke, "Fear not sorcerer, this is not your time to die". She struck faster than cobra, driving her fingers into the wound, when she pulled them free the dripping arrowhead was in her hand. The Dark Woman smiled and for some reason it terrified Alhazrad more than the death. She spoke once more, "Rest now, and take my story back to the land of men when you awake", and left the tent silent as a stalking panther.
Alhazrad awoke midday, his wound had closed and the infection had cleared. The camp was quiet, even the noisy baby had apparently decided to nap the day through. He stumbled to the nearest tent, he would thank these simple people and be on his way. No answer came to Alhazrad's hail and so he peered into the tent. Alhazrad fled screaming to the next tent and then the next. But in each he found the same thing, skeletons of a tribe long dead and forgotten.