ExcommunicatedA Story by ewest1220
We weren't damned yet...
By: Ethan West
"I sit here now, my life fading. Blood is pooling at my feet. I am a broken man, destroyed by mere coincidence. But it is unimportant right now. I need to warn you… I need to warn you…
I was about nineteen when it happened. It was my birthday, how was I supposed to know it was the day of my damnation, of my excommunication. When I woke up that morning it was like any other day. I worked an apprenticeship at the old blacksmith's hut. That was when my master, the blacksmith sprinted out the door waving a piece of paper in his hand.
"You need to get out of here Sam," he screamed. "They, they are after you." I stared at the old man with contempt. I had done nothing wrong, and I certainly had no intention of leaving. But that's when it all went downhill.
The guard, alarmed by the shouts of the blacksmith, had left their post by the town gate. They galloped up the cobblestone road towards us. Their faces contorted with disgust as their eyes rested on mine.
"Poor b*****d," one of them sighed. "That poor, poor b*****d." The other man dismounted and lifted his gauntleted fists. The blows roared down on me like thunder, the other man slowly withdrew his knife. He slid the sinister blade down my arm as the skin split in two, as effortlessly as if it were merely paper. I screamed in pain and misery as my torturers continued to mangle my broken body. Once they were satisfied with the carnage they loaded me up on one of their horses. By now I know where they were taking me. I t was where the damned go, this I knew. But what had I done? I sobbed into the horse's rear as they approached the castle.
I was still in tears when my torturers threw me on the ground in my cell. The pain in my arm was terrible as blood ran down my arm, dripping at my feet. My body shook uncontrollable as I placed my bleeding arm against the wall of my cell. The wall was ice cold, temporarily stopping the flow of blood. It was then that I heard the loud rattling on the bars of my cell. I looked up with dazed eyes as a large man entered. My blackened eyes could not make out any details. But his voice echoed loudly through my prison.
"Sam Amain you know why you're here, correct?" I was befuddled by the question, how in the hell was I supposed to know? In fact I still don't know to this day. "No," I answered after a brief pause. The man lifted what looked like a sheet of parchment from his jacket. "By order of The Holy Pope you are herby sentenced to excommunication due to your actions on Sunday January 24th." My mind fogged instantly as his words washed over me. "No… No…" The man stared at me sympathetically as tears welled up again in my eyes.
"Come," the man said sullenly as he withdrew a dagger from its sheath at his side. "I shall end your suffering."
"No!" I shouted. "There must be a mistake. I didn't do anything wrong. I just carried about my business as usual. Please god no this must be a mistake!"
But the man's sympathy only lasted so long. His eyes hardened and his tone became sharp. "Listen to me you wretched creature, if you do not want to die that is one thing but do NOT insult The Holy Pope. Not here, not ever. I will bring an inquisitor.
The man drew a cross on his chest as he left my cell. I tried to call out to him, I tried to explain myself. But all that came out of my mouth was a cold, sinister, crackling laugh as my fate became clear. Perhaps I was the abomination they claimed me to be. I mean what kind of man laughs when he has been given a death sentence? It was at that moment that I lost my sanity, and all hope of rejuvenation.
So it came to be that the inquisitor made his way to my cell. He was carrying two black metal objects in his hand. I swore under my breath. He was carry ing thumbscrews. I leapt to my feet hastily and charged the man. But he was larger than I and, unlike me, he was not weak from loss of blood. He hit me in my stomach, making my eyes feel as if they were about to leap from my face. He placed the thumbscrews on my thumbs and began to twist them shut. I screamed at the top of my voice as my fingernails split and my blood splattered on the torture instrument. My blood began mixing with the dried blood of its previous victims as it dug itself deeper into my thumb.
But this did not satisfy the inquisitor it only seemed to excite him. He continued twisting the thumbscrew until my bones began to protrude from my blackened skin. It was then that I fainted. I know not what else they must have done to me thereafter.
I awoke with a start in a different cell. My head was swimming: I had no idea how long I had been out. But I gazed down at the pulp that used to be my thumbs and let out a wail of pain and misery. My hands were shaking violently, what little that was left of my thumbs were soaked with warm blood.
But it was then that I realized something so terribly horrid that it made everything that I had been through seem like minor inconveniences. I had been lying in a pool of water, and my open wounds had been soaking in the filth. My arm was black and blue and had no feeling in it… it was rotting off. In a fury unmatched by any man before me I cried out. "Oh lord why am I forsaken?"
Suddenly a man touched my arm, a man that I hadn't seen due to my panic and pain. He had been whipped raw and blood was running down his arm. He was paper thin and his skin, or what was left of it, was chalk white.
"You are not… forsaken." he began as he placed something in my blood soaked palm. I stared at him for what felt like minutes, and then turned my attention to what he had given me. It was a plain, wooden cross.
A warm tear slid down my cheek as my body began to seize up; its feeble pleas to remain among the living ignored by the darkness around us. The man looked at me and smiled sadly, I didn't know why but I was smiling back. My new found friend fell to the floor with a thud. In fact, he is right over there, right in the middle of our cell.
But, as I said before, I am dying; and I must deliver my message… my warning… to you. Do not lose hope. For even though the world has lost all hope in you god has not. Know this and you will never be beaten… and you will never… be forsaken…"
The man slid from the wall with a groan as death overtook him. Though I was saddened by his passing he was right.
We weren't damned yet...
© 2012 ewest1220
Columbia Falls, MT
AboutI have been writing for as long as I can remember. I have been featured in about 4 books, have won several contests for my work and currently have a paperback edition of my works. (Titled "A Winter Wa.. more..
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