They fought like hell.
There was no time to get the Colts out.
The troops swarmed out of the ruins, armed with torches and cutlasses. Whoever they were, they knew how to deal with my family and me.
Cut off a limb and cauterize the wound. Takes a helluva long time to recover from that.
I had no doubt those heavy cutlasses would be aimed at joints and that the torches burning brightly in the cloud-dimmed land would serve to immobilize me for the killing blow.
I had my war club in hand when they came sprinting toward me. They were young men, each in the prime of his life. Their eyes blazed as brightly as their torches, and there was a fierce eagerness to destroy me in their every movement.
The first to reach me had his cutlass raised overhead, his face a mask of fanatical loyalty and devotion. On his lips was my mother’s name, and it died in his mouth as I shattered the side of his skull, sending shards of it into his brain.
He dropped and his comrades, surprised, stumbled over his body.
It was the only opening I needed.
I didn’t bother with the Colts or with the Bowie knife.
I’d killed plenty of men before with the war club, and I’d gone raiding with it when I was just a boy. At the knee of my father, I had learned to kill, and I was going to show these men that I’d learned my lessons well.
Every blow I landed struck a joint.
Knees were crushed, shoulders knocked out of sockets, hips destroyed.
Men were left paralyzed and howling around me.
I stepped on bodies and piled the same around me. Men struggled to reach me, and I shattered rib cages and jaws, collapsed orbital sockets and ruptured groins.
I was here to deal death, and they thought they were there to do the same.
It didn’t take them long to realize they needed to survive.
But by then, it was too late.
I left the wounded screaming on the ground, and I chased down those trying to escape.
When I finished, I dragged the living to the ruins, and with their cutlasses, I crucified them to the wall.
I scalped the living and the dead alike, and when I finished, I set them all afire.
I’ve no mercy for any who wish to burn me.