A wooden club whizzed past my head. Striking the wall inches past my shoulder, it clattered to the floor. I stared for a second. Gone was the quiet, withdrawn woman I thought I knew. Hair wrapped around her head, stripped to her leather jerkin, shirtsleeves, and leggings, she moved like a sleek cat, feminine, yet deadly. Confidence radiated from her as she whipped another cudgel into her dominate hand.
“Remember what I do for a living.”
She advanced and I retreated to the fallen weapon. Scooping it into my hand, I swung it up into a defensive stance seconds before she struck at my shoulder.
I retaliated with a series of strokes that should have reduced her to begging for leniency. Instead, she met me hit for hit, backing away into the center of the room. Although she gave ground, I grew wary. She was holding back. Fury boiled in my belly.
I changed my attack. After feinting to the left, I jabbed at her right. She took advantage of a small defensive weakness and landed the first blow, a hard jar to the ribs. I renewed my onslaught, taking a risk. She saw the move and sidestepped at the last moment, dancing out of my reach. Breathing hard, we faced each other.
“The point of this was for me to work out some frustration.”
“This is hardly satisfying.”
She laughed, a clear sound that echoed in the rafters. “I am not about to submit to a beating just to help your frustration level. I will help you wear yourself out, though.” She leapt forward and attacked again.
Come back next week to find out who wins.
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Wren Romany is currently in the last stages of editing.
Keep checking back for more news as her story progresses toward print.