Short Story: Hope in Chains: Part 2

Hope in Chains Cover Part 2 Rich woke up the next day with a driving urge to love and pity the guards. He smiled at as many as he could as he passed and they gave him confused looks.

He worked as hard as he could and even tried to strike a conversation with one of the guards. They seemed pleased to have someone to talk too, and they gave him one of their rolls (which were slightly better than Rich’s), instead of the one Rich normally had at lunch.

Terrance grinned at him from across the table at lunch.

“Try it again?”

Rich told him about what he had seen when cleaning the guard rooms and Terrance nodded slowly.

“Yes. That’s what I mean. They really need love. They need pity. They are just hurt like us. So, what do you say to having some love for the guards?”

Rich grinned at Terrance and nodded.

After lunch was over Rich went and talked to the same guard again. They talked over many things and about the outside world. The blue sky, the sound of birds chirping. Clouds passing overhead.

The guard sighed when Rich talked about this.

I haven’t seen the sky for a year now. We guards hardly have anymore freedom than you prisoners do. A little more and better food, sure, better rooms for sleeping, sure, but not much else.”

“Then why don’t you escape?” Rich asked.

The guard hung his head.

“I couldn’t. I just … couldn’t.”

“What about with a little help?” Rich asked, a small smile appearing on his lips.

“What, from you?” the guard scoffed. “Your locked up in a prison.”

“Not if you got the keys, unlocked me, and gave me a sword. I could get us out.”

The guard thought about it for several long minutes. Rich hoped he would agree. This could be his way out of this place. Then he and Terrance could get help from another kingdom and free all of the prisoners!

The guard slowly nodded.

“Yeah. I think we might be able to do this.”

Rich grinned.

“Cool.”

Rich told Terrance about the guard and his cell mate was excited.

“When? How? Where?” Terrance attacked Rich with a pile of questions. He refused to answer them all.

“All in good time, Terrance, all in good time. You just have to wait for it,” Rich was grinning from ear to ear.

“Oh, Rich you are so infuriating!” Terrance exploded and they both laughed.

The next shift, Rich talked to the guard again.

“What’s your name?” he asked.

“Nick. How about you?”

“Rich. Good to meet you, Nick.”

They shook hands when they were sure no other people were watching.

“I know where the keys are, Rich. They won’t be hard to get. It’s getting them to you that’s hard, and not getting discovered. The sword won’t be too tricky though.”

“When will we do it?”

“I can get it to you tonight. We can get out when only two guards are stationed at the main door. I can handle a sword pretty well. You?”

Rich nodded.

“It’s been awhile, but I’ll manage. Also, there is one more guy. His name is Terrance. He’s my best friend and we have to free him as well. We’re cell mates, so we don’t have to go to another cell.”

Nick sucked in his breath, but agreed.

“I’ll grab an extra sword. The danger rates of being spotted when we go out are higher, but we’ll do it. We’ll get him out too.”

Rich grinned.

“Thanks, Nick.”

“No,” Nick said, placing his hand on Rich’s shoulder. “Thank you.”


Rich paced his cell for the hundredth time. He paced it again. And again. And once more. Still, Nick did not come.

He stamped his foot in frustration and then, picking up a rock, slung it across the room. Terrance lay on his cot, legs crossed, looking up at the ceiling. He seemed calm, but Rich knew him better than that. Inside, he was probably even more impatient than Rich. He had been in the prison as a slave for over two years. Rich had only been here for one.

Rich groaned. Terrance looked over at him.

“What?” he asked.

Rich walked over put his lips to Terrance’s ear and groaned as loud as he could. Terrance grunted and rolled away, then looked over at Rich, grinning.

“He’ll come soon. Be patient, man!”

Rich sighed and sat down on the floor, cross-legged.

Terrance suddenly got up and began pacing the room.

“But dang, he’s taking a long time!”

Rich chuckled.

“Be patient, man.”

Suddenly, there was a soft knock at the door and they looked over. Nick was outside of the cell door, fiddling with the keys. Two swords were tucked under his arm. The door opened with only a soft creak and then they were out of their cell and buckling on the swords.

“Thank you, Nick!” Rich grinned and patted his new friend on the back.

They moved quickly, quietly. They didn’t meet any other guards or prisoners on the way. Nick had picked a good time to escape.

“We’re getting pretty close to the opening. Be ready to draw your sword. The guards will probably be tired, but they are dangerous. They are the best guards in the force, because they are guarding the entrance.”

Terrance and Rich nodded.

“Got it,” Rich said.

They moved as quietly as possible. Rich loosened his sword in his sheath. Sweat began to bead his brow and his palms. He wiped it quickly away. Now was not the time to get worked up. But Rich was worried. He hadn’t handled a sword in years and now he was going to have to fight!

“Here we come,” Nick whispered as they rounded a corner.

At the end of the hallway, two guards stood by a large door. The door that led to the outside! Trees, grass, rivers, sun, clouds, blue sky …

Rich gulped in anticipation.

He drew his sword; it felt good in his hands. The weight was perfect. At Nick’s signal, they charged.

The guards saw them coming and, gasping, dropped their spears and drew their own swords. Grim faced, the three escapees raced right at them.

The opposing swords clashed with the frightening shriek of metal on metal. Rich was pushed backward and to his knees. The guard he was fighting grinned and raised his sword to finish the escaping slave.

Instinct kicked in as Rich saw the sword coming for him. He rolled on his shoulder to the side and then leaped to his feet, stabbed the guard through the ribs. The guard screamed in pain and fell hard.

Nick and Terrance were finishing off the other. Terrance had a large cut on his forehead and blood seeped from it, but he said it was no more then a scratch and they had to take his word for it, for they had no time to stop and look at it.

Searching the guard’s pockets, Nick pulled out the key to the door.

“Quickly, we don’t have much time. No doubt other guards heard the fighting and now they’ll come too.”

Nick went to the door and Rich and Terrance watched their backs.

Suddenly, guards came racing around the corridor. Nick turned and drew his sword. Rich ran for the door. He wrestled with the key, and finally the door popped open.

“Come on!” Rich cried.

“We’ll never escape the guards! You go and get help Rich, go get an army to stop this place. For now, we will fight for you,” Terrance said.

“But you’ll die!” Rich protested, turning back.

“Go, Rich. You have to go. I’ve survived two years of this place,” Terrance flashed his little grin. “I’ll survive some more.”

Rich gulped and then turned away running. Nick shut the door behind him. Rich could hear the sound of swords clashing. Rich gulped, but kept running. He now needed to get an army so that he could come back for Terrance and Nick.

Racing up a small, green hill, Rich saw the blue sky, the trees swaying in the wind, and the fields full of flowers.

Rich slowly walked down, fell on his hands and knees under a tree, and the completely collapsed from exhaustion.

Rich woke up some time later and saw that it was morning. He got up and tightened his sword. Wandering aimlessly for a few minutes, he found a stream and drank from it, then, wiping his lips, moved out, walking quickly toward where he guessed was another kingdom. He would plea for them to set these slaves free and if they did, he could get Terrance and Nick out of the evil place.

Rich smiled slightly. Terrance was love in chains. He just poured out hope and love for everyone. Rich broke into a run. He kept his eyes on the mountains that pointed in the direction he was going. Keep moving toward the mountains and he would stumble upon a kingdom or a village that would direct him to one.

He couldn’t believe he had finally escaped. He was free, and now it was time to get his friends back.

 

The End

Enjoy this short story? What was your favorite part? I would love to know! Tell me in the comment section below.    😀

Short Story: Hope in Chains: Part 2

Caleb E King

Copyright © 2018 Caleb E King
All rights reserved.

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