Now that I’m over that damn cold I was fighting. I have something to share with you all. As I’m sure some of you are aware I’m doing my best write a prompt story per week. The prompt for this week was Dance. Next week the prompt will be Food. If you plan on joining me I’d enjoy reading what you came up with.
Standing with the flintlock rifle raise the carriage slowed. The collar of the highwayman’s long leather cloak flipped up high and tied up at the front with buttons. Keeping the lower half of his face hidden from sight. The cloak hid two back up pistols he had strapped on his person, which could be easily reached through fake pockets. His large brimmed hand pulled low covering his face in shadow.
“Woah there!” The driver said while pulling on the reins. “Don’t want no trouble mister, please step aside and let me pass.”
Lowing the rifle into a position that he could raise quickly if needed he stared at the driver. “Good sir, I have a question and then I will let you on your way.”
“Ask yer question.” His hand sliding to a pistol hidden beside him.
“I plan on robbing the people of their goods in side that carriage of yours, and I am wondering if your employer see’s fit to pay you enough to raise that pistol you have hidden and play a game of chance or if a you’d rather step down from your seat and disappear?”
There was a stretch of silence. It was clear the driver, an older man, his better days long past was considering the words of the man that stood in front of him. Many years his younger and a rifle that was so clean and so well kept it caught the rays of sunlight through the trees. It was clear this highwayman was not bluffing. “Good sir, I am thirsty and I do believe there is a town not to far back the way I came. I think I’ll get myself a drink.” Tying up the reins on the bench seat he sat on he stepped down. Brushed his hands off on his pants and made a quick jog back down the road.
The drapes that were pulled shut cracked and eyes followed the driver as he ran down the road. Panicked whispers could be heard coming from inside and the highwayman walked up to the carriage. Being sure to stay in a position where he could use the windows to his advantage and being sure the line of sight he gave the people sitting in carriage was limited.
“To the people sitting inside the carriage I have four things I need you to do. As I speek these things I expect to see it happen or I will fire in the window and I hit who I hit. I can rob you of your goods or you life. One, how many of there are you?”
There was some confused whispering then a woman yelled. “Four.”
“ Two, I want your weapons tossed out the window, this means firearms and knives.” The highwayman waited but nothing happened. “If I don’t see weapons falling to the road, the person sitting in the front right window dies.”
Weapons started to drop out of the window, two pistols, two knives.
“Good, three, I want you to step out very slowly, hands in the air.”
The highwayman knew that this is where things got dangerous. This is generally where people did desperate things. He had strapped the rifle over his back and had his hands were in fake pocket gripping both pistols. The door was pushed open and slammed against the carriage wall.
“Settle down now. Be good and slow.”
The highwayman watched two rather stunning women step out and wore sour looks on their faces. He couldn’t tell if they were disgusted by him or that their lovely spring dresses of blue and yellow were being dragged in the dirt. Behind them exited a man with his hands up.
“Where is the fourth?” From around the corner of the carriage and man appeared holding a pistol. The lord who tired to play hero was no match for the highwayman. The second it took the young lord to round the corner, the highwayman had his gun up, fired, and the lord collapsed to the ground.
The women screamed at the sound, worried that the shot was directed at them. When silence returned they realized that a man lay on the dirt, rolling side to side, holding his gut, a white wig laying not far form his head. The man was moaning.
“See what happens when you get stupid.” The highwayman said. “This didn’t need to happen.”
The women in the yellow dress ran to the man who was in sever discomfort. “You killed him.” She yelled.
The highwayman shrugged, it wasn’t the first life he took and he knew it wouldn’t be his last.
“How dare you!” The man said and took a step forward towards the highwayman.
Another pistol was raised and pointed at the would be hero. “I wouldn’t do that if I were you.”
“You have no honor killing a man like that.”
“Honor is not a concern of mine.” The highwayman glanced down at the dying man, an ever expanding pool of blood formed around him. “Your ladies jewelry and whatever coin you have on you, are my concern.” Tossing a leather pouch to the man. “Fill it and you may have time to get him to a doctor before he bleeds out.”
“I think not!” The man spit on the ground while the women coward behind him. “I challenge you do a duel, to a gentlemen’s death. Which is more than you deserve.”
“I really don’t have time for this, just fill the pouch.”
The highwayman was no coward, he did have a rapier on him and he could use it. He looked at the young lord. “If you wish to die as well, I do not mind sending you to the reaper like your friend.” Undoing the buttons to his cloak he raised a sword, keeping one of the loaded pistols in his hand until he was sure this was not a trick. The young lord had his rapier out quick and was already walking towards him. The highwayman decided to raise his pistol, pulled the trigger and nothing happened.
The young lord stood there smiling. “It would appear God is on my side.”
“No, just luck.” The flintlock pistol did not spark, silently the highwayman cursed himself. Tossing it away he realized this dance was about to start.
The blades came together as the young lord attacked. Expertly the attacks were deflected by the highwayman until the young lord drew the first line of blood with a lighting fast slash that tore a razer sharp opening in the highwayman’s cloak drawing a line of red on the tanned skin under it. The highwayman flinched but noticed the young lord was taking satisfaction in the strike and the highwayman returned attack of his own. Cutting the thin silk of lords shirt the young lords stomach was cut open and cut deep. The thin fabric giving no protection. Quickly the young lord’s hand went to his stomach to try to stop the bleeding but it was to late. The highwayman followed up with a quick thrust and the point of the rapier pierced deeply in to the chest, the young lord collapsed.
Before his mind could register the shot the highwayman felt his chest burn and fell to his knees. Looking up at the lady who stood in front of him holding a smoking pistol. “Where’d you get that?” Falling face first in to the mud of the road he joined the two men on the road to the reaper.