Challenge #01462-D001: The Curse of Vows

in #fiction7 years ago (edited)


Rest in Peace.
Now get up. And go to war. -- RecklessPrudence

Falstaff the Paladin breathed in with great difficulty. "Would it kill you," he croaked, "to at least let me rest for a day or two before the resurrection spell?"

The appropriately-named Faith concentrated on her healing mantras for a moment. "The longer you're dead, the worse things get for you. Do you remember the Brain Damage Incident? I remember the Brain Damage Incident. And let's not talk about the intestine regrowth from the last time your body went missing on the battlefield."

"You're talking as if that's my fault," grumbled Falstaff. The absolute worst thing about being revived was feeling the things that had happened upon death. The release of bladder and bowels was always the most mortifying. Feeling his death wound heal was always the creepiest. "I'm no longer in charge of my body when I'm dead, you know."

"I know, but it's difficult to keep that in mind when you're on a quest for a fortnight."

Feeling more blood generate was... surreal. Falstaff knew better than to move whilst his Priestess was healing him. "It's not as if I could do anything about it. I need five more levels before I can petition the Gods to guide my friends."

Faith finished her chant. Once again, he was as unmarred by life as a newborn. Almost. Faith had learned that some things, like calluses and other adaptations to living, should be left as 'scars'.

Falstaff found that to be the most disturbing part of being an adventurer. He was younger, physically, than his childhood friends. Some of whom were starting the slow slide towards the ends of their lives. As long as he was adventuring, as long as people like Faith were raising him and healing his injuries... he was the next best thing to immortal.

And yet, he could feel his old wounds, regardless of the absence of any scars. Sometimes, he felt tired of the adventuring life. If he hadn't made such a foolish vow, he'd have let time take him as it had taken some of his friends.

Falstaff rose from his bier. He could feel Faith's sanctification of his body working more magic than her healing. Evil was swarming, outside the warded Healer's Tent, and he had vowed to defeat all evil. In all its forms. All over the world.

He had had no idea the world was so large, nor that evil was so rife.

Falstaff picked up his sanctified blade, said his prayers, and stepped back into war. Horrible. Endless. Repetitive war.

[Image (c) Can Stock Photo / Veneratio]

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