What they saw, killed them
by Harbinger of Death
This is a crummy assignment, Heraclid grumbled.
Well, it cant be helped. All of our usual red-shirted hunters and slave men
have escaped or been killed off. And we need wood for our fireplaces and the oven.
Bluetopaz handed him a satchel.
Why cant you do it? Perrin said. You look strong enough.
Thanks, I have been working out lately. But its not my job.
Its not our job either! Blackstar protested.
Im your mother and I say youll go, she said, slapping him lightly
upside the head. Now get going before it gets too dark.
The three hunters grumbled as they took the equipment and kindling satchel into the woods.
What a raw deal!
Im gonna have words with this stupid Harbinger dude, Blackstar said.
Maybe you will, but I wont, said Heraclid. I dont plan on
dying in order to meet him.
Good call. Im going to lock myself up in my room when we get back.
This tree looks good. What do you say?
Its as good as any. Lets do it.
After a brief dispute over who got to operate the chainsaw, Blackstar (who now had
something of a black eye) and Perrin looked on while Heraclid started the thing and
started to cut into the tree. But the machine coughed and sputtered, so he pulled it out
of the tree to take a look as it idled.
Whats wrong with it? Perrin yelled over the din.
I dont know! Heraclid yelled.
I told you I should have done it! Blackstar yelled. Turn it off and let
I cant! Its not responding. Whoooooa! The chainsaw roared back to
full power and dragged Heraclid around with it. The other hunters ducked and ran as the
thing waved around in the air.
Turn it off, turn it off!
Im trying! It wont!
Then let go!
I cant! My hand is stuck! Aaaagh!!! The three hunters were involved in a
bizarre dance wherein Heraclid and the chainsaw advanced and the others retreated; he came
around again and it all started over. Finally it caught up with one of them and lopped his
AAAAAAAAAAAAA!! they all yelled, looking at the bleeding gaping hole in
Blackstars shoulder. He fell to the ground, and the chainsaw leapt forward to carve
him up like a turkey. Perrin stood frozen watching a horrified Heraclid try to hold back
the metal from spilling Blackstars guts all over the place. Blackstar gurgled,
looking to Perrin for help, before he gave up the ghost, his intestines in his hands.
N-no, Perrin said, backing away as the chainsaw turned on him.
Dont do it!
Run! Heraclid pleaded desperately. Its out of control! Run, get
out of here!
You dont have to tell me twice, Perrin hollered as he took off running.
He could still hear the buzzing behind him, sometimes closer, sometimes a little further
away. But he was tired and frightened, and stumbled over a log. The buzzing got closer as
he tried to get back to his feet, and he nearly made it back into a gallop before he felt
the blade slice down his back.
Ouch... He fell back down, and the saw continued to cut him in two, down
between his ribs and the length of his back. Perrin laid in halves among the dead leaves.
Heraclid was panicked. How would he explain this to everyone? Theyd think he did it
The chainsaw lifted slowly into the air. He realized he probably wouldnt have to
explain anything to anybody just before it dove swiftly to embed itself in his leg.
He fell and cried out in pain, his severed leg twitching as the last bits of energy in the
nerve endings worked themselves out. The chainsaw finally died and was silent, and
Heraclid worked his hand free. He threw it as far away from him as he could manage. As the
blood seeped from his body into the forest floor, the last thing he saw was the cleaved
corpse next to him before his vision clouded and he drew his last breath.
Posted on Oct 13 1999, 12:13 PM