Survivors of the Wild – Chapter 17

Chapter 17 – The Brothers’ Struggle Part 2

Jacob strolled slowly across a field. A soft wind blew across his skin, slightly lowering the temperature in a comfortable way. Furthermore, carried on the wind was the scent of something sweet. Aside from the one setback, his cart being set on fire, the day couldn’t be any nicer.

Well, the fire and the basically immortal people trying to kill him. That was a little bothersome also. The first few times he snapped their necks and crushed their bodies was fun, but as the saying goes; no axe stays sharp forever. Or was that about taking break? Something about practice, maybe? Whatever the saying he was trying to think of, it didn’t matter. He was as strong, fast and health as twenty people so he had no problems dealing with the attacks.

He also noticed that if he stole a piece of equipment before they died, they didn’t have it when they resurrected. That was turning into something of a game; take a piece of equipment and bury it before the ‘player’ caught up to him again. They seemed very much attached to their stuff; that made their expressions far funnier when they noticed he didn’t have them.

Maybe once they didn’t have anything left they’d stop fighting. That said, he had no idea where he was going. He was following the pleasant smell because he was hungry and it seemed to be in the opposite direction to Fred’s Discount Swords. Not that it really mattered. John tended to worry too much about the journey; Jacob knew that enjoying the destination was what mattered. Was that right? He got the feeling that he was forgetting a saying again. There seemed to be a lot of those and remembering them was a lot of work. It might even be harder to remember them than to remember everyone he had robbed.

That was another one of his brother’s problems; he tried to remember everyone they cheated. Jacob honestly couldn’t see the point. John would say something about knowing who to look out for, but if a problem showed up they could just deal with it then. Dealing with a problem before it became a problem was simply making work.  Did that count as a saying? If it didn’t, he thought he should make it one.

As he strolled through the soft green field, he took a moment to take his shoes off. The grass between his feet was inviting and the sun warmed his blood like a fine drink. A fine drink would be one of the few good points his brother had. He had never met anyone that could make a better liquor then John. Ah, that’s right. The drinks were in the cart. Suddenly, the fire seemed like a much worse situation. Thankfully, one of the ‘players’ approaching him seemed to have a wine-skin.

After that person’s head was severed from their body with their own sword, he grabbed the drink. Kicking the body into the chest of another attacker he uncorked the wine-skin and took a swig. To his absolute disgust, some loathsome trickster had filled it with water. What a bastard. Who would do something like that? It just seemed completely cruel.

He pelted the bottle into a nearby assailant and created a very satisfying cack as they fell dead from the impact. He then proceeded to finish of the remaining people with a series of destructive kicks. It was unfortunate, but he hadn’t needed to draw a weapon to kill someone for a long time. It was almost enough to make him regret taking so much power. It wasn’t enough, just close to.

Before long he found the souse of the smell. It was a chef. A chef was apparently a better cook. It seemed strange to Jacob that someone would put so much work into becoming that good at cooking just to be backing in the middle of no-where. Then again, he didn’t understand most of what ‘players’ did. Resurrecting probably resulted in brain damage. That made a lot of sense to him. High level ‘players’ tended to act the strangest and die the most often. Cause and effect there, if he ever heard it; Straight up karma.

The chef was cooking some kind of pie in a pot over a fire. From what he could smell, it was some kind of spiced apple dish. Furthermore, he was working on some kind of source. Jacob watched as the man pulled out a bottle of fine wine, poured it into the source and set it on fire while mixing it through. That filled Jacob with black hate and he ran towards the man at his fastest speed. Before the man even noticed him he was dead. Jacob quickly doused the fire, but found he was too late to save the drink. As a last ditch effort he snatched the bottle and prayed for even a drop. His prayers were either unheard or ignored, since the bottle was dry.

After eating the pie and killing the hunters another time, he started walking again. Towards the centre of the grasslands, he found a small wooden cabin. Within it he found a woman sitting alone at a table. From what he could see, she seemed to live alone there, and didn’t seem to be a ‘player’. A cruel smile spread across his face and he invited himself into the house. She tried to run, be he blocked the only exit.

With him at the door, she backed herself into the corner crying, “Please don’t come closer” as if she though that would somehow stop him. As he got closer as just kept annoyingly repeating herself. With very step closer, she seemed to just get louder. Didn’t she know how annoying that was? Didn’t she know that if a thing doesn’t work, something else should be tried? Maybe she was bad in the head. That seemed likely. Who else but someone with a bad head would live alone in a house in the middle of a field?

When she was within arm’s reach, he tore at her shirt, splitting it open and let the plentiful contents spill out. His joy was short-lived, however, as beneath the shirt along her stomach, was a large eye vertically aligned and starting up at his face. Its cold blue colour matched the woman’s other eyes and matched her creamy copper-blond hair surprisingly well. Meeting the third-eye’s gaze filled him with an uncomfortable feeling, like a tingly feeling that started from his toes.

Taking a quick look at his feet he started to see the cause of the feeling; his toes had melted and the dissolving was spreading further up his feet.

Without a moment’s hesitation he ran. He ran for the door and slammed it behind him.

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