Better than Dead (flash story)

This is the conclusion of the second set of adventures of Karamus as told by an older and more bitter version of himself in a semi-journal format. These are written for fun so enjoy.

-Lucas

“Now, tell me what happened next.” The shadowed warden demanded.

“I don’t remember.” Karamus replied with a tired, but satirical grin.

“Yes you do.”

“No I don’t.”

“Yes, you do.”

“No, I don’t.”

“You died.”

“I got better.”

“So you do remember.”

The old cansin gave a sigh, “Look berk, I got myself written into the dead book. What more is there to say? Blasted weaver destroyed me. Dead to rights. Next thing I know I’m in heaven.” he said with a smirk, “Thirty naked woman feeding me grapes. Can you imagine how great that is?” Karamus turned his head to the shadow outline of a person and only saw the head of the red-hot poker, “Nah, I guess you wouldn’t know about that.”

“Ow!” he screamed out as the poker seared flesh.

“You did not stay dead or we wouldn’t be having this conversation now would we. What happened next?”

Karamus turned his head back to look upwards again, “They say the only way to get back is to slip the bonds of death and ride the chains back to the world.”

“That’s rather poetic of you.” came a reply. “Why the change?”

Karamus turned his head back over to the voice and then held up his now free hands, “I slipped my bonds.” he said with a sweet smile before kipping up from his table just as the red-hot poker swung underneath him. The old cansin landed on the balls of his feet and quickly shot out a kick to the temple of his dominator before leaping off the table and rode his body down to the ground.

Several punches later, Karamus gave out a growl as he hoisted up the body of his tormentor onto the table, “Blubber your heavy.” he said with a pant and then bent backwards which caused several bones of his back to crack and moan. “So you want to know what happen…well, you’ve finally convinced me. I’ll tell you everything you want to know.

“So there I was, eating grapes like I said when this voice came to me. At first I thought it was another maiden wishing more quality time. As I got to listening more, it wasn’t a woman’s voice at all but that of a young man calling my name. A mage of all people. I expected the sodding farmer to come knocking and thus, my curiosity was peaked.”

“So I returned to the prime to see what was sooooo important that these berks would call me up from the dead. I get back and what do I get, demands and curses. Now the paladin I understand his anger. I truly do. I pissed in his garden of law and order. The funny thing is, I got away with it then and I’ve still gotten away with it now. Paladins are a funny lot, all self-righteous and imposing on others way of life but when it comes down to who gets shit done, you turn to the man who has the balls to do it.” the cansin stated coldly as he picked up the poker and jabbed it into the side of the man for good measure who let out a scream.

“So it turns out that the mage wants help in the City of Doors to find his father. I’m all about a revenge story and since I had unfinished business there anyways, I was all for it. The old group, back together again. Just like old times. Except for the paladin that is.”

“Turns out, half the berks can’t even walk through a portal correctly. I wasn’t surprised. The journey was a short one and soon I was in my old stomping grounds, living on the edge of the Hive. After a few inquires and…” Karamus paused for a moment and took a sniff in the air, “sweet, sweet Kylie, we found out who we needed to talk to, the new boss in town Shemeshka.”

“Also turns out old Azlenar got himself written into the dead book for getting to rich. I figured it would have happened sooner or later. I would just have loved to get my hands on him before hand. Alas it was not…” he paused for a moment and the poked the man with the poker again, “Hey, you wouldn’t happen to know a good cleric around these parts would you? No? And you call yourself a man of faith.” he said with a snort.

“Anyhow, we made our way over to the Fortune’s Wheel where we made a deal with the devil. Literally. It was worth it though I have to say, I would trade anything for my sister, any item, any berk, even my own soul. Thankfully, the king just needed Nightstar for a bit for a business meeting. I’m sure Shemeshka got the proper end of that deal.”

“From the lady’s ward we made our way to the crazy house where apparently old Primus had made a name for himself being crazy. Can’t say I’m surprised. You deal with the dead too much and you go crazy. They’re not known for their conversational skills you know. So after some long father-son talks, Ashton decided to pull his father out of the place and when we went to gather his things. And wouldn’t you know it, some chaotic thugs just happened to break in and grabbed the stuff. I was surprised. Were you surprised?” he asked with another jab and the answer was a blood churning scream. “I thought you might be.”

“So we fought the things off, not that bad of a fight all things considered but the weirdest thing happened when the last one fell. This wave of chaos enveloped the whole group like a tidal wave and I felt…different somehow. Changed. It was like I had a clearer insight to everything around me. Like the stars were now aligned and such. And thus, our mission was completed in Sigil. I had my sister and Ashton had his father. Well…ok, almost done. I still had some desire for Kylie but that’s another story that I’m sad to say you won’t get to hear my old friend.” he said and leaned in close with the poker which brought light to the face of the former tormentor.

A dwarven face came into view stricken with fear, “Now now, hush little baby don’t say a word, pappa’s gonna buy you a mockingbird. And if that mockingbird don’t sing, pappas gonna buy you a red-hot poker. And if that red-hot poker don’t sear your guts, pappas gonna leave you here to rot.” he sung as he drove the poker into the stomach of the dwarf. “Say hi to gramps for me.” he whispered and turned and walked away.

_______________

Karamus opened the door to the small home quietly as he figured everyone was asleep inside. He silently made his way into the den and climbed up into a chair and ended his long walk with a sigh of relief. Just as he closed his eyes a light flicked on which brought him out of his almost restful state. He caught the smell of perfume of honeysuckle scent and the sound of a twitching tail, “Turn that wretched light off.” he growled.

“I was wondering when you would show up.” said a female voice followed by the person sitting in a chair nearby.

The old cansin opened up his eyes and blinked several times to get use to the light. His scowl turned to a grin as he looked upon a tiefling woman, “Yeah, just need a place to hide out for a bit till things blow over.”

The tiefling gave a mock surprised gasp, “And you thought of little ol’ me? How touching.” she said with a wink. She then stood and Karamus could see that she was barely dressed as if she had truly been in bed before his arrival. “Come on you. My bed is cold” she said over her shoulder with a wicked grin.

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