This, and next week’s, were written when I was … very bored and in need of a challenge. So I wrote for a minute, and when the minute ended, I moved onto the next sentence/paragraph. (It’s actually kind of fun, but best done over short periods; you start thinking more, the longer you go).

 

Seventeen

is the number of witches in the city and he’s gone to them all but no one can do anything

Sixteen

is the number of witch doctors turning him down and falling to the ground when his sword hurts them of its own accord, and he just wants his wife back, he just wants her to love and hold him again

Fifteen

is the number of houses he lives in whilst he searches, because he thought he heard her in each of them, laughing about the painting and the war and the people in the towns, mocking their little lives compared to this great game they played

Fourteen

is the number of little deaths he dies when he realises that his wife is not there

Thirteen

are the clouds raining above his head as he stalks away from the weather wizard with a sense of humour, and the number of times he sees a girl that looks just like her and wonders about reincarnation, but she never believed in that herself

Twelve

whores in his bed, not young and not old, that he paints her face onto and beg her to forgive

Eleven

palaces he has been to, each more splendid and golden than the other, but gold and silver aren’t the money he needs, he needs blood and souls and a battle to dedicate, she always loved a good battle, liked him after one

Ten

are the mercenaries setting upon him in the desert, and he kills them all in his rage, that they dare interrupt his speaking to her sandy, dry, grave, so far from the forests she grew up in

Nine

are the necromancers he arranges to have in the safe place with her body, desicated and mummified, and they promise that his lady will be herself at the end, and all his again, his beautiful lover at last

Eight

cats cross his path as he walks towards battle, and he never considers them a bad omen

Seven

veils, he remembers, seven veils, and the dance of the nomad girls, and he weeps to see them, because she always wanted to dance like that, and he paints her face on the girl and finds it disturbing that she fits in his heart so well

Six

traders bring him goods in return for business deals and he turns them all away because there is no business until he has a wife again

Five

are the pleasant dreams of her hands and her eyes and her laugh and he wakes up to find the girl like her and goes away to cry in his infidelity, and prays that his wife will forgive him

Four

are the scuffles before the battle, and he feels the magic swell through him from such little deaths and when he goes to her she looks alive but is not yet, more are needed

Three

generals meet across a terrain as treacherous as the bog of his homeland and they bow and smirk and turn away to their armies again, and he begins to hope that the plan will work at last

Two

are the days in which they fight, in heat and cold, in sun and rain, and he leaves them bloody and stained and hurt and staggers away from his men, and looks upon the slaughter he has caused, and despairs that it may not be enough to work

One

is the knife that his wife puts through his heart when she is awake again, and he remembers too late her evil