If you’re new to this story then you can catch up here with the prelude.
Our story so far: After learning about the rigged tournament our adventures Maron, Rick and Kil, are following the contestants to sabotage them outside the context of the tournament. We continue the story with Maron as see has been confronted by the person she has been following.
I was on the floor shivering when the man, towering and strong, accused me of following him.
“I don’t know what you mean.” I innocently said unable to prevent my nervousness showing.
“What are you here then?” He shouted, there wasn’t a person around to help me and he looked ready to start fighting.
“I was buying clothes, but I got tired.” I said.
“There are no clothes shops around here! You walked past all of them!” He said irritably.
“Those ones are too expensive; I was looking for other shops.” I said after a moment of silence to think. All I had to do was keep the story going and I would be ok.
“So you just happened to watch my fight, follow me around, and then wait in the exact place I stopped.” He was a lot more observant than I had imagined, I contemplated saying I was following him because I fancied him but thought against it.
“I don’t know what you mean; I’ve never been to the tournament.”
“Bullshit” he said, and looked around quickly, no one was there. He punched me, and didn’t stop. They were massively strong and I felt like my stomach was turning itself inside out. There was no running. I slumped to the floor and doubled over clutching my stomach.
“BITCH” He spat, walking away.
I wanted to murder that guy with all my heart. I lied there in shame for five minutes before gaining the strength to get back up. If I could find his tent and follow him again I would have no problems burning his skin off, it would be fun.
I hobbled along for five minutes before finding Kil who was relieved to see me.
“Maron, what took so long?” He hadn’t seen that I was badly injured.
“I followed this guy…”
“Yeah I saw him before I found you. I was worried!” Kil said hapilly.
“Well I was trying to see if he was staying in a place outside the city, seems like he was just visiting a brothel.” I didn’t want to worry him with my injuries, I would rather he didn’t notice.
“We’ve got to burn that guy tonight. Can you see if you can find him?” I said it in a calm voice but there was real anger there.
“Yeah ok.” Kil said as he left.
It took me a long time to get back. I was in a sad and depressed contemplative mood which was only made worse by my injuries. I’d killed two people in my lifetime and the fact that I had no consequences for those actions made me sad.
The fact that Rick had probably killed his opponent made me feel slightly better, we were in the same boat. I was not a normal person, a murder drunk and sober, with a recovering addiction and the only woman trying to win a competition rigged against her. I was a complete outsider.
I thought of Joe, and how he probably hates me now. I vanished on him, and made his life miserable. I murdered someone and left him behind. And I didn’t dare think of this in my mind but now that I had started thinking I couldn’t stop. When I awoke on that day, with a hangover, we were both naked. It saddened me that the last moments I spent in my old villiage could have been moments spent cheating on him. It was disgusting. And now I was going to leave that life behind just so that I could murder more people and cause more trouble. I was quite possibly the worst person in the world, with the only positive trait trying to save the country from having a Kovan as the king.
This chance was my only possibility of redemption. If I was able to prevent Kova from taking over the tournament I would feel better, like I did justice for my county and saved the lives of many from a horrible fate, I would pay back the two lives I had taken. That was my new goal, it would be a noble one and even if we never got the praise or recognition I know that we would have done the right thing.
I got back late, with these terrible thoughts on my mind. I wasn’t a person who was admirable; I was evil and stupid, and horrible. Nobody would want me, I was tempted to just leave and never return, and maybe it would be better that way. The only reason why I came back was for my own selfish reasons, I wanted to see that person burn.
I got back to the tents and only Rick was there, while the others were checking the board.
I lied down on my front, trying to conceal my tears from Rick, he wasn’t having a very good time in this competition and was still extremely hurt. We lied there in silence for a few minutes, my thoughts getting worse and worse. It was easy to forget them when I was distracted but now I struggled.
“Maron.” Rick said as he was lying down on the floor. I instantly felt a rush of guilt and panic.
“I genuinely feel like I might die soon…” His pain was bad and I had never even noticed. What kind of terrible person wouldn’t notice when their companion was dying? “and I want to tell you this in case I do.” Maybe this would be the time when he brought up my previous fight, or somehow he could have known that I was a murderer before we’d even met, I wasn’t the best at keeping secrets.
“I love you Maron.”
I hadn’t heard those words in a long time, not even from Joe. I didn’t expect them to stir up such strong emotions. I began to cry even worse than I had been already. He didn’t just accept me despite the terrible things I had done, he loved me.
All of this made sense, when I felt disgusting after my fight; he grabbed my hand and comforted me, despite the fact that I was sweaty and horrible. It was nice, being with him always was.
I looked at this poor, battered and bruised boy with an ugly eye, and realised I had loved him all along. It made me feel better, like it would all be ok in the world.
“What’s wrong?” Rick asked.
“Nothing. But, I’m a murderer.”
“Really?” He asked, it was sad that I had to tell him everything to keep my conscious clean.
“While you were here and I was in a fight, I bit a guy’s back and he died from the blood loss.”
Rick was shocked by this “But weren’t you under the effects of the spell, shouldn’t you blame Rob?”
“Just because I was under a spell, doesn’t mean I still did it.”
“No, I was under that spell too and there’s nothing you could have done, it makes you violent, and it’s not you! The spell changes you to something you’re not!” Rick shouted with emotion.
“It’s not just that Rick, before we even met I was a murderer.” Ricks eyes went wide, he couldn’t believe it. “I woke up one day after drinking to find that there was a dead guy I’d killed with my knife.”
“Were drunk? I don’t think you knew what you were doing!” For every defence he had I had something against it.
“I know I have a problem, but I did it anyway knowing the risks.” I cried, it was sad; I wanted to love him but knew getting close to him would hurt him.
“I don’t care if you have a problem! I’ll help you! You’ve been sober this entire time!”
“I still want it though!”
“That’s fine! One day it will stop!” Rick shouted, I believed that was his true thoughts but at the same time I couldn’t believe it as well. No person should love someone like me.
“I love you Maron, I really do.” Rick said seriously.
“I love you too” I was happy to get it off my chest, and Ricks pleased face really made me smile, if I could make him smile like this his feelings were genuine.
Thank you for reading chapter 21 of this story! Read next time to find out what happens when they start trying to burn their enemies tents!