athor felt the breeze on his
neck, but before
he could turn toward the window he was
knocked down and flipped over on his back
and a blade was placed in front of his face. A
heavy weight settled on his arms and mid-section
and a voice said softly, “Leave me for dead, eh
Bathor, finding it difficult to focus past the blade,
could not mistake that voice for any other than
Murfree. Eight days ago when their adventuring
party was deep in the bowels of the Red Dragon’s
lair, they came across the great wurms treasure den.
After loading up as much booty as they could
manage, they were working their way back out when
the dragon crossed their path.
Fortunately, for Murfree, he had a bag of holding
and was less encumbered than the rest to defend
himself. Unfortunately, Bathor’s fighters were given
extra treasure to carry and could not easily come to
the melee with the dragon. As Murfree fought and
dodged furiously, the others took the opportunity to
leave him to the dragon and make good their escape.
And now Murfree, somehow, magically has
reappeared to sit on Bathor’s chest with a blade
pressed to his nose. “M-m-m-m... many crates. Going
somewhere, Bathor?” Murfree’s low calm voice made
Bathor tremble uncontrollably.
“M-Murfree, y-you knew the dangers of plplundering
a d-d-dragon’s lair. G-get in, g-grab all
you can and g-get out any way
But, before Bathor could continue, Murfree leaned in
closer to add in a stern tone, “And that means leaving
crew behind?!” He punctuated his question with his
blade sliding into Bathor’s nose until a droplet of blood
appeared next to the razor sharp edge.
“B-be r-reasonable, M-Murfree.” Bathor stumbled on
every word knowing they were the words of a money
grabbing coward. “Y-you’re a-alive a-a-aren’t y-you?”
He said, hoping somehow, to talk his way out of his
“No. I’m not.” Murfree said. “The dragon stopped his
attack on me right after you left. He found it quite
amusing that you could run like a cur and leave me
behind as a sacrifice. He pondered a day on what my
fate would be, during that time he buried me up to my
neck in treasure. He decided to enchant me to his will.
I am strong of body, but, weak of mind.” Murfree
leaned back and opened his tunic, there to reveal a
fresh brand burned into his skin.
Bathor shuddered and Murfree said, “I only live on
by his whims. And, his first whim is for me to bring
back all of your heads to him. So, it is now time for
your head to join your chum’s heads in my duffle.”
“N-NO, Wait!! Murfree! You’re enchanted! I know a
powerful wizard who can right your wrong!” Murfree,
finally speaks in a loud voice. “You lie!!”
“NO! Truly!!” Bathor pleads.
© 2002 L. Brenza