by VJ Miller, Sr.
A near-death experience thrusts a mousy little executive into an ancient desert world where he occupies the body of a brain-dead barbarian felled by a Mongol-type Warlord. Is this only a dream or has he crossed over into another reality. Can he make the sacrifice to stay in the barbarian’s world.
Morning at an Ancient Middle Eastern Bazaar.
The sun shines brightly on several rows of tables, tents and tapestries displaying pottery, utensils and various animals and slaves for sale.
Shouldering his way through the crowd is, Ronal, 28, 6’6” powerfully built with potent arms and legs. His long black hair is held back by a leather strap around his forehead. He is bare-chested wearing goat-skin pants and leather sandals. His chiseled features and cold grey eyes could scare a man to death.
He looks over the various goods and trinkets among the venders. Seeing nothing to his liking he is about to leave the market when he passes the tent of a fortune teller. He is halted by the alluring voice of a middle-aged woman in all her finery
“Care to have your fortune told to you, young man?”
Ronal pauses at the sound of her soothing voice. Turns his body to her and is gruff.
“I need know witch-woman to conjure up for me what I make for myself.”
“Your future ends in two days, but it can begin again with this.” She holds up a wood carved amulet, two heads in profile back-to-back. One looks similar to Ronal and the other appears to be a short-haired sickly man. It dangles from an oiled leather strap.
“And how many pieces of gold do you want for this magic charm that will save my future?”
“None. It is a gift meant only for you to possess.”
He scoffs and is distrustful but still steps in closer to examine the gift. He touches it with his fingertips and they begin to tingle.
“A gift? Why?”
“I saw you in a vision these seven nights past and was commanded to carve this from lightning struck wood, then give it to you the chosen one.”
“Chosen one? For what?”
“That was not foretold to me. Only who should it be given to.”
“Bah! I will not be chosen for anything. I choose where I go and what I do.”
The fortune teller’s face takes on a stern cast. “Do not accept this lightly. Fate determines our future, not us.”
Ronal’s equally stern look remolds into a nasty grin. “But I have not agreed to accept your gift.”
The old women implores. “Please. Humor an old woman and promise to keep this about your neck.”
Ronal stoops low to permit the fortune teller to place the leather strap over his head and around his neck. Unseen by Ronal but not unnoticed by the old woman, the amulet briefly takes on a soft glow when it contacts his flesh.
“Satisfied now, old witch?”
“May the gods protect you, always.”
“I am my own protector. What need do I have for such trinkets?”
“You are an arrogant one for sure, but you did allow me to give it to you. Therefore, I have completed my task even if you don’t deserve it.”
Ronal’s eyes narrow as he shakes his head slowly then turns away from the old woman and walks out of the tent and out of the bazaar.
It is late morning and inside the city gate Ronal is astride his white Arabian. He leads a second pack horse with all his worldly goods, out of the city toward the desert.
Watching are two unwashed, scruffy looking thieves who follow Ronal intently with their eyes. They take notice of his money pouch strapped tightly about his waist. They whisper amongst themselves then scurry off out the gate in another direction into the desert.
It is mid-afternoon, the sky in devoid of clouds, the sun high and hot.
Riding his stallion across the burning sands is Ronal. Tethered to his saddle is His pack horse. He stops and dismounts and goes to check something that has come loose from his belongings.
He drinks from his goatskin water bag then offers some to his horses who drinks heartily. Returning the water bag to its place he pats his stallion on the neck.
“You are tired my friend as am I. But it is only two rotations to Sumala where we will find proper food and lodging. When the sun has set, we will stop for the night.”
The sounds of many hoofbeats in the sand in the distance alert Ronal that he will not be alone very soon.
A troop of 20 soldiers in period garb much akin to a Mongol hoard, hurries toward Ronal. Whooping and hollering, brandishing their sharp swords.
Ronal draws his massive broadsword from its scabbard and prepare to do deadly battle.
“We can’t, outrun them,” he says to his steed. “So, we shall take as many to Hades with us as we can.”
The horde rapidly circles around Ronal, pressing in ever closer as they do. Ronal swings his sword at whoever comes close.
They are practiced at this. On foot they would surely lose some of their men. They move ever closer but stay out of reach of Ronal’s blade, waiting for their quarry to make a fatal error.
Ronal tires of the game and hurls himself at the nearest member of the horde. So forceful is his lunge that he bowls over both man and horse. Rolling over, Ronal is on his feet before his adversary can stand and relieves him of his head.
Forced to circle around the downed horse as it tries to stand, another warrior is caught under the armpit by Ronal’s razor-sharp sword. He screams in pain as his arm hangs loose by a small thread of muscle.
The numbers are just too great. Ronal relieves another of the horde from his perilous life but is knocked off balance by a second horse. As he staggers aside, he comes into the reach of another horseman and is clubbed in the back of the head. Only stunned he falls on his knees in the hot sand and has dropped his weapon. The remaining members of the horde leap upon him, clubbing him into unconsciousness.
They leave him in the sand for the sun to burn his flesh and for the insects that scurry around to partake of what they have left behind.
All is quiet as the sun prepares to set for the day. Ronal lies face down in the sand. He stirs, his scalp is bloody. Pushing himself to a kneeling position he studies the barren horizon with eyes that slowly come into focus. With a start he notices all his possessions are gone.
“Filthy dogs! You should have killed me while you had the chance. When I catch you, you will curse the day you stole from Ronal.”
Brushings sand from his chest he notices the amulet still about his neck, then cradles it in his hand.
“Not interested in an old hunk of wood, were you? — Maybe you will be lucky after all since I’m still alive.” It tingles in his huge hand.
Ronal drops the charm, letting it fall to his chest, pulls himself up while taking a deep breath. Searching around the area he spies the hoofprints of the horde in the sand. They’ve left their comrades where they fell, only taking their horses and weapons with them Determined strides take him after the hoof tracks that lead toward the setting sun.
In the hours just before dawn Ronal has come to the end of his search and is approaching a huge citadel, a sprawling stone and mortar edifice. It is surrounded by a vast stone wall with a massive wooden double door at its entrance.
Fueled by his vicious anger and determination, Ronal shows no indication of fatigue after covering the many miles.
Seeking an area far from the entrance he has crept up to the shadows along one wall. There are chinks in the old mortar of this ancient place that afford him hand and toe holds as he makes his way to the top of the wall.
There are sentries milling about that are not totally aware as Ronal silently climbs over the top and quietly drops down inside the wall.
A trail of bodies with twisted necks and shattered spines lay in his wake as he makes his way to a door in the side of the citadel.
A woman, Ur Soola. 25, 5’11” with long raven hair, athletic, voluptuous, in a goat skin halter and tight leather pants became his next victim when she stepped from the outbuilding.
Stepping swiftly from the shadows, Ronal’s massive hands encircled her neck, her cobalt eyes pleading.
“Cry out and I will snap your neck.” He said just above a whisper. She shook her head no.
Ronal ran his hands down her bare arms and along her hips, then pulled her to him tightly as he kissed her hard. Running his hands up her back she shuddered when he released her from her halter top swiftly and cupped her breasts in his hands. She resisted but gave little effort as he kissed her neck then pushed her away to arm’s length.
Growling, he said, “Cover yourself, woman. When I have slain your master and recovered my property, I will claim you for my prize.
While fixing her attire she gave a warning, “The Agga Seer is a most powerful magician. He will not submit easily.”
“So much the better. It will make my triumph much more pleasurable.”
When he went through the door where Ur Soola had come from, Ronal crept up behind the lone guard from behind and in one swift move, snapped his neck. He drags the dead guard further inside, hiding the body in a niche behind a wall tapestry. He makes his way furtively along the interior. Ducking for concealment whenever a guardsman passes by.
It’s Christmas time in the late 1960s in the city of Philadelphia. People are hustling along the streets doing some last-minute shopping. In the upper floors of the Insurance Building, late one evening, they are engaging in the annual office party.
The party has dragged on for a few hours. Most everyone is a little tipsy and having a great time. Some of the desks are pushed together, covered with a cloth to form a makeshift buffet loaded with various food and drink items.
At the buffet, eating the shrimp cocktail is Barney Fitzer, 45. 5’8”, thin somewhat sickly, in a suit just slightly too large for him. With him is his girlfriend, Jenny, 37, 5’6”, thin, every bit the spinster in dress and temperament. They don’t seem too happy.
“I don’t know why I let you talk me into coming here, Jenny,” he said.
Mildly annoyed she says, “Aw c’mon, Barney. I told you we could have a good time if you’d only let it happen.”
“I’d sooner be home with a good book.”
“That’s your trouble. You spend too much time with your nose in a book.”
Still chowing down on the shrimp. “Can I help it if I like to read.”
“But does it have to be some sword and sorcery book, or medieval adventure. Can’t you read something a little more current?”
“So, I like action. Is that such a crime/”
Jenny sits back on the edge of the buffet table, glances away then back at Barney.
“Maybe not. But maybe it ought not be the way you fantasize about being the big hero. A man your age.
Barney chucks the piece of shrimp in his hand back on the buffet. “A man my age hasn’t got much more than his fantasies.”
Jenny hangs her head. “You’ve got me.”
Slowly, Barney’s heart melts and his irritation passes. “I’m sorry, Jenny. I didn’t mean that the way it sounded.”
“I know. It’s okay.”
They smile at one another. She runs her fingers playfully through his hair. From a pocket in her dress, she pulls a small Christmas box and hands it to Barney.
“I was going to give this to you later but I want you to have it now.”
Barney takes the box and lifts the lid, looks inside then back to Jenny, reaches in the box and pulls out a silver chain. Attached to the chain, carved out of ivory, is the exact same charm given to Ronal by the witch woman.
“What is it?”
“It’s a good luck charm, silly.”
“You think it will counteract all the bad luck I’ve had recently?”
“Well, it couldn’t hurt. Try it on.”
Barney pulls the chain over his head and lets the charm fall down over his shirt.
“I found it in a little curio shop over on Walnut Street. The shop keeper said she had a feeling it was meant for my beau. She was a quaint little old lady. She put me in mind of a fortune teller.”
Barney gives her a peck on the cheek. “Thanks, sweetheart.”
Across the room are two men who look like they are up to no good. Joe Callahan, 27, 6’, athletic, light in hair and complexion, stands with his cohort, Lenny Franks, 30, 5’10”, stocky with dark hair. They have more than a passing interest in Barney.
“Look at those two, wouldja,” says Callahan.
Snickering, Franks quips,. “They oughta get a room.”
“Can you imagine?” he says, poking Franks with an elbow.
“No, and I don’t want to.”
The two men have an inane laugh.
“Did you put the stuff where he’s sure to get it?” says Callahan.
“It’s in the cocktail sauce. And the way he’s sucking down the shrimp he’s gonna be in the men’s room all night.”
“Where’d you get it?”
“One o’ them Soldier of Fortune magazines. Ya just mix a few simple ingredients and voila.”
Back at the buffet, Barney and Jenny have noticed Callahan and Franks looking at them and snickering.
“What’s with them,” says Jenny
Turning to look at his tormenters, Barney says, “You mean, Callahan and Franks? Like as not they’re up to no good. Probably thinking up another way to torment me.”
“You shouldn’t let them get under your skin.”
“How? I seem to be the butt of all their jokes.”
Whatever Franks added to the cocktail sauce, Barney is starting to look a little ill, not unnoticed by Jenny.
“I don’t know. I guess I’ve eaten too much.”
“You wanna leave?”
“No. I’ll be fine.”
Abruptly, Barney cups his hand over his mouth and races for the men’s room. Callahan and Franks erupt in raucous laughter. Spotted by Jenny, she pauses in following Barney and strides quickly towards Callahan and Franks.
“What’s so funny?”
“Your boyfriend,” said Callahan.
“What’s the matter? Shrimp can’t hold his shrimp?” said Franks as the two men continue with their laughing.
“I don’t know how but you two must be responsible for this,” says Jenny.
Butter wouldn’t melt in their mouths as they deny everything.
“For what? Is it our fault your boyfriend made himself sick?” said Callahan.
Jenny pokes Callahan’s arm. “Well, you don’t have to enjoy it.”
“Tis the season to be jolly, y’know.” Said Franks.
“You’re not funny either,” said Jenny turning to Franks.
The two men continue to get their jollies while Jenny hurries to see to Barney. who has just exited the men’s room looking a little green.
He nods. “Let’s get outta here.”
While Barney and Jenny head for the exit she turns her head to glare at Callahan and Franks.
At a nearby suburb, a taxi pulls to a stop in front of a cottage on a tree-lined street. One of the passengers, Barney gets out on the curb side. He pays the fare and Jenny speaks to him from inside.
“You sure you don’t want me to come in with you/”
“No. I’ll be fine once I’ve had some Pepto.”
“All right. I’ll call you in the morning.”
Barney waves as the cab pulls away. Holding his stomach that is on fire, he is much sicker than he let on. He staggers up the walk to his front door. He fumbles with the latch on the front door. Once it is open, he bursts in and hurries for the bathroom where he pukes up his guts in the toilet.
In the Agga Seer’s Mystic Chamber sits an ornately carved stone bowl, three feet across, filled with water, sits on a stone pedestal. In the reflection of the bowl is the image of Ronal slipping furtively along a broad corridor.
The Agga Seer has Mongol features, stands seven feet tall, 300 pounds of powerful muscle. He is used to getting his own way with nobody to oppose him. His voice is deep and commanding. No one knows his age.
“This filthy dog has gotten farther than should be possible,” he roars
The Captain of the Guards, 40 6’, powerfully built has Asia appearance, in period armor, stands on the opposite of the bowl from the Agga Seer.
“He is the one our spies told us about and obviously a most adept warrior, Master.”
“Unless you wish to join your dead comrades, you will see that he is captured and brought to the arena.”
The Captain snaps to attention. “At once, my Master.”
The Agga seer growls as the captain turns quickly about and strides hastily out of the chamber.
Ronal steps cautiously along the torch-lit corridor. His head cocks at the sound of incautious leather-clad feet on the marble floor.
Dropping and whirling cat-like, lightning-fast reflexes snatch the spear as it passes overhead. From his knees, Ronal returns the missile of death to its owner; forcing the razor-edged shaft deep into and through the chest of the heavy-footed guard. Life gushing from his lips the guard slumps to his knees, falters then falls over, crashing to the floor.
Ronal retreats through an open hall only to discover that it is a dead-end corridor of statues. Whirling about he faces a swarm of guards charging in.
The Captain barks his order. “Get him and drag him to the arena.”
Having relieved the first guard of his sword Ronal swings it in controlled arcs slaying all who come near forcing the encroaching guard to stumble over the slain bodies.
In time they have forced Ronal to retreat further back against the statues. There are just too many an they soon disarm him, pressing him back at the points of several spears.
“Well go on. Finish it!” he shouts.
“Would that we could,” says one of the guards.
“Have you no taste for blood, man?”
“It’s not that we have no taste for blood. If we did not save such as you for the Agga Seer to slay himself, he would order all of us out to be beheaded.”
“Truly a disgraceful death.” says Ronal.
The Captain of the guard, now that the struggle is over, steps in brusquely.
“Bind this maggot’s arms and drag him to the arena.” The guardsmen are quick to comply. “And the rest of you drag these bodies out of here and clean up this mess.” The Captain shakes his head while he follows Ronal.
It’s night in a hospital room in Philadelphia. In an oxygen tent lies Barney, just barely clinging to life. Jenny’s gaunt hand is in his and is fearing for the worst. Barney had called for an ambulance and was found unconscious in his home the night before.
“Oh, Barney. Why didn’t you tell me you were so sick,” Jenny says, tears welling up.
An older nurse enters the room to check on Barney’s IV and the oxygen tent. “You’re the only one whose been here for Mr. Fitzer. I doubt he would have hung on this long otherwise.”
“He’s all I have in this world.”
“Have faith dear. Miracles do happen.”
The nurse leaves the room and encounters a student nurse in the corridor, who whispers. “She’s been here almost constantly, never letting go of his hand, hardly eating. I’ve never seen anyone so selfless.”
“More like desperate if you ask me,” says the older nurse.
The student nurse is perplexed as the older nurse continues on her rounds.
Truthfully, though Jenny will never admit, even to herself, she is afraid of being alone with no one to give a damn. That’s why she clung so closely to Barney since they first met.
Jenny has found the charm given to Barney in with his personal effects in the drawer of the cabinet next to the bed. Hanging from the chain she stares at it then lays it upon Barney’s chest. As she slowly sits back down in the chair by the bed the charm glows softly unseen by her.
The oval shaped area in the citadel with its compacted dirt floor is ringed by a high wooden plank wall above which are wooden plank benches for the crowd of local rabble. They are hollering and jeering and are out for blood.
This night, oil lamps are located around and above the arena to light the space. Huge wooden doors consume one end of the arena. The other end has a cattle chute that leads to the cell within.
Bound by stout ropes, Ronal is led by two of the guards by a rope tether. Brought to the center of the arena he is held in check by a dozen spearpoints.
Ronal gives the obligatory tug on his fetters to annoy his handlers while the crowd roars with cheers and jeers.
“Stand still dog lest I have you whipped,” says the Captain.
“You can try.” Ronal says coldly
“Don’t tempt me, barbarian.”
Ronal scans the amphitheater, absorbed in every nook, every point of advantage, every possible weakness in the surrounding to use as an advantage.
The wooden doors creaking open brings a hush to the crowd. They know the entertainment is about to begin.
Swaggering in is a huge Mongolian man, dressed in the ornate robes of a nobleman, followed closely by his entourage. Powerfully built, seven feet tall, this is the Agga Seer. The crowd erupts as the Agga Seer stands, arms out wide, in the doorway.
He strides directly up to Ronal and gives him a disdainful sneer. Ronal steps closer and returns the sneer with one of his own, unimpressed. The crowd erupts again.
The Agga Seers turns about, arms wide to address the crowd.
“So, this is the filth who dared steal into my house.” The crowd erupts again as he turns to get in Ronal’s face. “Speak infidel. Why should I not relieve you of your useless life?’
The crowd is hushed, eager to hear Ronal’s reply. Straining at his bonds, Ronal sticks his face up into that of the Agga Seer.
“I am here to take back my property that your accursed dogs stole from me. Even if I have to slay you to do it.”
The crowd goes wild at the insults and does not want to be silenced. Some for the Seer and others for the brash interloper.
The Agga-Seer lays back his head and roars with laughter. “Fool. You are a stranger here else you would know that everything that lies within the bounds of my land is mine to do with as I please, even you.”
Ronal bites off each word. “I am no man’s chattel.
This affrontery elicits a slap in the face from the Agga Seer. Ronal strains at his bonds but is held in check by the guards.
“Silence, filth of a dog You are mine and obey my will,” Roars the Agga Seer.
The crowd can only murmur.
“I obey the will only of men who have earned it,” bites of Ronal. “You have earned nothing, Are you all talk?”
The crowd gasps and groans then are waved silent by the Agga Seer.
“You are impetuous, dog. T’would please me to let you live just to waste away under my taskmaster.”
Again, Ronal tugs even harder at his fetters. “While I live you would best fear for your own ungodly life lest I separate your filthy head from it.”
The Agga Seer’s demeanor turns black. “Impudent cur! For this I will end your impudent life this very hour.”
The crowd erupts when the Agga Seer produces a formidable scimitar from beneath his robes. Stepping back, he brandishes the gleaming, razor-sharp blade in the face of his stoic captive.
“You neither flinch nor beg for your life, infidel.”
“I will not beg for that which you cannot take from me, yourself.”
“You are either foolhardy or weak in the head. Whichever you are you are not worth the sweat of my brow.”
“Truly, the words of a coward.”
The guards flinch and mistakenly give slack to Ronal’s bonds at the Agga Seers impending wrath, giving Ronal his opening. His arms still bound tightly He can still place a leather boot to the Agga Seer’s chest that sends the Monarch reeling backward. The stunned guards shrink in astonishment.
Adrenaline powered chest and arm muscles flex and bulge. Ropes fray and snap like dry grass in the hot sun, releasing his potent hands. Arms expand in controlled flight sending the guards scrambling. An incautious one is disarmed by Ronal and swiftly beheaded. The crowd is shocked into silence.
Ronal whirls to face the Agga Seer who has agilely regained his feet and thrown off his heavy cloak.
“Hold, warrior. I will join you in battle once I have prepared.’
“To what end, only to delay your death.”
“You are a man of some honor and deserve to die like one.”
“More useless talk. Get on with it, coward.”
Holding his ground, sword at the ready with a wary eye, Ronal observes while the guards are waved out of the arena by the Monarch.
Swiftly, reverently the Monarch removes the remainder of his trappings. His Mongol features are cold, cruel, fixed. They do not waver from Ronal’s heated glare.
Through the slowly closing double doors runs Ur Soola. She is held up by a remaining guard who is unceremoniously thrown to the packed dirt floor by her. She races to a spot before Ronal, between the two combatants.
“Speak woman. What is the meaning of this interruption?”
“If you slay this warrior, you must do such through me.”
“Oh ho, Ur Soola. You have found yourself yet another champion.”
Ronal brushes her aside. “Step aside, woman. I need the protection of no female.”
“So, warrior. You have more to fight for than just your useless life.”
“And when I have relieved you of your bragging life, I shall have this woman for my prize along with all your wealth.
“Two people shall be slain this day. First you then this troublesome wench. I grow weary of her.”
“Talk is worthless without the spine to stand behind it,” says Ur Soola. She spits at the Agga Seer. The crowd is aghast at such effrontery to their Monarch. Ronal holds out an arm to detain her from getting too near the Monarch.
“So it is, wench. But your master is mistaken. If two are to die here one will not, be I,” warns Ronal.
The Agga Seer is now demanding. “Enough. Time to end this farce.”
Ut-Soola is pushed aside to a niche in the wall while the two warriors slowly encircle each other.
The icy rain of death scratches at the window of Barney’s hospital room. On a chair, close to his bed Jenny stands her solemn vigil.
While his fever raged, Barney mumbled strange words in an unknown language and accent.
A middle-aged doctor comes in to check Barney’s vitals and hears the strange mumblings of his patient.
“What is he saying. Doctor?” says Jenny.
“No one knows. But don’t be alarmed. It’s not uncommon for fever patients to hallucinate.”
Jenny sits fearful in her chair, never taking her moist eyes off Barney.
Now it is the time for the less fortunate to live or die. The two combatants cautiously circle one another, looking for an opening.
The Agga Seer tests his opponent with a simple controlled thrust that Ronal parries easily. He returns a thrust in kind with like results.
“Is that the best you can do?” says the Monarch.
“Step closer and learn how to die,” Ronal says with a grin.
The Agga Seer throws back his head in disdainful laughter. “Impudent filth.”
It was then the Monarch launches a determined while lackluster thrust that is easily evaded by Ronal.
“Is that the best YOU can do?” chides Ronal.
The Agga Seer enters the fray in earnest, obliging Ronal to step back quickly he parries each swing of the Monarch’s blade. The arena rings loudly with the ring of clashing metal that reverberates off each wall. The crowd is on their feet, chanting in odd hymns.
Each thrust becomes faster and more forceful. Each advancing and retreating in kind; their swordplay so swift it can barely be seen.
“You fight well warrior,” says the Monarch.
“And you will be dead.”
The battle ebbs and flows for several minutes, neither showing signs of weakness. Then a brief misstep by Ronal and the sharp steel of death flashes toward him straight toward his chest. Honed reflexes thrust him backwards but the tip of the Agga Seer’s blade slices a slim path along Ronal’s chest.
“Aha. I have won,” exults the Agga Seer.
“Are you mad? Tis but a scratch.”
Ronal renews the press of his attack and appears swifter than before while the Agga Seer becomes defensive. Tense minutes pass. Ur Soola stands transfixed in the cattle chute.
Ronal leaves his head exposed, bringing an instant invitation to death. The Agga Seer takes the bait and is suckered in. Ronal ducks while razor keen death flashes overhead. The Agga Seer makes the fatal mistake, leaving himself open to swift death.
A lightning-fast thrust sent Ronal’s blade deep into the Monarch’s chest. Metal scrapes against rib, gristle pops, the Agga Seer grins in silent defiance. Giving his sword a twist, Ronal leans down on the blade, withdrawing it down and out, disemboweling the Monarch who stares at his inner organs and entrails at his feet then falls backward landing hard on the earthen floor with a hollow thud.
The crowd erupts as they jump out of the stands. Ronal stands to defend himself, but to his surprise they run past him to jeer at the dead Monarch and kick loose dirt on him.
“Ronal,” shouts Ur Soola. She has run from the cattle chute and is fighting her way through the crowd to get to her champion. They embrace and engage in a hearty kiss.
“You are mine now,” as he takes her about the waist then slings her over his shoulder like a robber’s sack then carries her toward the double doors that have been swung open.
They are ignored by the guard who fight back the crowd and fight amongst themselves over the Agga Seer.
Ronal’s eyes blur. He stumbles against the massive door jamb but neither falls not loses his grip on Ur Soola. He shakes his head and continues out of the arena, leaving the rabble to their fate.
END OF PART ONE