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Nomad Avenged – Snippet 4
Terry Henry Walton Chronicles Book 7
By Craig Martelle and Michael Anderle
Akio saw them clearly in his mind. Five Forsaken and six humans, two of which were kept for their blood, although by Forsaken logic, any human life was forfeit if the Forsaken were hungry enough.
Not today, Akio thought as he descended the stairs, silent as a ghost.
The most dangerous Forsaken was on the top floor. Akio decided to forego the stealth approach and walked into the hallway and toward the room where his enemy would be found. The Forsaken was pacing.
Akio opened the door casually and walked in. He was surprised to see a westerner.
“My name is unimportant,” the Forsaken started with a dismissive wave. “I expect you are the famous Akio, slayer of my kind. A shame. We didn’t choose to be what we are. That decision was made for us, and we have to live with it, the best we can.”
Akio didn’t reply. He kept his distance as he took stock of the room, noting the furniture, tripping hazards, possible traps.
Despite his words, the unnamed one carried a long curved blade with an ivory hand grip. A filigree was engraved down the blade. Akio had only seen one other like it. A Mameluke, the sword carried by United States Marine officers in the before time.
The kaleidoscopic color of the steel suggested it was a Damascus blade, one of the very best.
Akio’s appreciation of his enemy’s steel was limited to what he needed to do to kill the creature and then move through the building to eliminate the rest. Akio still didn’t say anything because there was nothing to say. He gripped his katana in both hands as he approached, sidestepping without crossing his feet.
He shifted from right to left, looking for the side that the Forsaken favored. The unnamed didn’t give it away. He smoothly matched Akio’s moves.
The first blow came as each swung toward the head of the other. Akio turned his blade slightly to catch the cutting edge of the Mameluke on the flat of his blade, letting it slide the length and past his head. Akio ducked low and swung low, diving to the side as he saw the glint of a redirected slash.
The unnamed barely missed Akio, but the master Japanese swordsman’s aim was true. The tip of his katana tore through the Forsaken’s thigh slicing a notch into the femur as it passed. Blood spurted from the sliced artery.
Akio returned upright and bounced away, ready for a counterstrike.
But the Forsaken held his leg with one hand, while he backed up slowly. He twirled his sword in front of him, carving a figure eight in the air. Akio saw a door, and he ran at the unnamed.
The Forsaken turned to bolt, but his leg deceived him, and he stumbled. Akio’s first slash removed the Forsaken’s sword arm. In less than a blink of the eye, the unnamed’s head was rolling on the floor. The body remained upright for a moment, then toppled.
Akio looked at the blade on the floor. He picked it up and studied it briefly. A fitting sword for a man he would call a friend. Akio cleaned it on the couch, then drove it home into its silver and gold scabbard. He slipped it next to the katana’s saya and hurried into the corridor and toward the steps.
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