Soon to be rewritten…properly.
The dead boy had not reached that moment of appreciation regarding his predicament. If the afterlife offered opportunities to describe one’s demise, analyse the precise events that had intersected in such an unfortunate way, allowed one the opportunity to reflect on the wayward judgments that had been made just prior to the final denouement, then he would have been able to spend eternity digesting his present plight. The last line in all of this was that he was dead, yet had not quite reached the point where the grains of his life had finally passed through the tiny funnel of existence. The boy was dead.
The body that was Michael’s felt the callous blade of the knife some time before it touched him. A sixth sense, the type of thing that an archangel would enjoy, began to ring. He had taken away his attention from the boy because he was the lesser threat. Only a boy.
The black robed monks had been making their advances, encircling him so that a synchronised attack would give them maximum advantage. Michael had directed his attentions to the two who were moving into positions on his left and right. Whilst doing so, he had also paid a good deal of his attention on the giant leader. This one would provide the greatest threat.
In the meantime, Dawkins saw his chance.
Split seconds are what it takes to change the world. Split seconds in which a noose can be thrown around a neck, poison put in a drink or a blade thrust into the lower back of an unsuspecting hero. Split seconds.
Everything was in his favour. First there were the hostages. What hero could place such pathetic lives at risk? Then there were the monks who had appeared just as they had promised. On top of that, there had been the vanity of the one who chose to turn his back upon him. This more than anything else had enraged and encouraged the boy. Finally, there was the driving rain that masked his steps, allowing him to sneak up upon the hero without him being heard. He had even gotten the knife to within thrusting distance and was in the process of completing the first incision without his victim noticing. Everything was in his favour.
The monks were taking too long. Michael expected an instant assault that would deny him any time to prepare. However once into their attack formation, they halted and hesitated. Why? They had the advantage and could easily force the issue. These black monks had waited hundreds of years for this moment and now they hesitated. He searched for a possible answer, his mind taking to the air to think through the myriad of reasons and that was when it came to him…The boy.
A smile had come across Dawkins’ face. It was a smile of triumph. His would be the first to spill blood. His would be the blade that ended the life of the Andrews boy. He could already feel the initial resistance of the outer skin and then the pop as it gave way to the tip of the knife. His impetus would drive it forward through layers of derma and then it would be into killing territory. The lower back was where many of the vital organs could be found and that was where his blade would venture. He could already taste his success, but that was before the unthinkable happened.
His victim turned like a snake and deflected the oncoming thrust. The dead boy needed an eternity to come to terms with the speed of the counter-attack and, if his luck matched his decision-making, he would be granted just that.
The Andrews boy was not what he had expected. There was the business of him being taller and broader than he had been told about. More than that, there was the strength and speed that this inconsequential possessed.
At the point of death, a thought raced through his blurring mind. Could it be that he had been tricked? Had the brothers switched places?
Michael stared down at the boy who had fallen at his feet. The blade he had been carrying was now lodged securely in the side of his own neck. It was a fatal blow that did not take long to bring about its intention. The boy was dead yet still locked eyes with his killer.
Deep within himself, the other Michael gasped at the deed he had committed. He had killed again and now he was indelibly stained.