In the Chamber

- jan-u-wine
Being a remembrance of Mazarbul
 
 
It is no small thing to be alive.
 
No small thing at all.
 
For a time without measure
I thought  
 
perhaps
I was not.
 
I might have laughed,
then,
 
at the absurdity of that thought,
had not the taking of a single
 
breath
been twined with pain,
 
the salt-metal flavour of blood
filling my mouth,
 
the colour of it flashing and fading,
commanding all my dimming vision…..
 
The smell of it is there, too,
when I waken,
 
heavy and thick,
like the trail of black pooling
 
upon the floor,
like the life fleeing from eyes
 
which do not,
 
can not
understand.
 
Like a great rock he lies,
 
this
creature,
 
this.....
 
Troll.
 
The word is ugly upon my tongue,
though I do not speak it aloud.
 
No, I do not speak it,
but stay still upon the hard stone of the floor.
 
I watch him.
 
His head is towards me,
his eyes look into mine.
 
I have learned the malice of the Enemy,
 
how even hollow'd sockets might yet betray
undead hate.
 
There is none here,
only
 
pitiable confusion.
 
And so I pity him,
this creature,
 
and wonder
what             
 
his thoughts might be,
or if
 
even he has them.
 
 
No one save me sees him,
in that last moment,
 
no one save me
feels his last breath,
 
final and foul
breathed into the space between us.
 
I close my eyes then,
my hand still holding
 
close
the sword which hewed
the green scale of his foot.
 
But for the bite of my silver friend,
here,
 
it would be me
who lies silent within this chamber,
 
my journey darkly done,
the world's life
 
over.
 
Still,
there is no joy within me
at the sight of the great maw,
 
teeth broken and black-blooded,
 
no joy at the film'd eyes
which somehow
 
reproach me.
   
I am glad
when I am carried away
from him,
 
glad when I can no longer
smell death
 
or hear in my mind
the small movements
of fingers yet remembering
life.
 
And I let the blackness of his blood
dry
 
like a fateful rune,
upon the blade of my sword.
 
Within my shadow'd heart,
I determine I shall not use it
 
thus
again.   
 
 
Somehow,
even now,
 
I know it shall not be my part
to use and be used
 
thus
again.