A famous warrior on their deathbed reflects how they never fought an opponent equal to their skill.

“Death, my old friend.”

Lazarus had found a flat rock that afforded him a view of the plains stretching out for as far as he could see. He had been sitting there so long, propped against the stone, that his extremities had started go numb.

Beyond the mountains to the west, the great towers of Windhelm clung to the cliffs. He had met a great archer there. They had fought over distance and days until finally he had pushed close enough to finish the man with a small hatchet. They had carved his face into the mountaintop, the great Lazarus Peaks.

He smiled, trying to twitch his hand and feel the sword resting in his palm. But no. It was frozen stiff now.

Across the horizon, a months voyage across the Vestal seas, he had met the man who had come closest to besting him. A tiny whip of a thing, with a greying ponytail and sagging skin over a gaunt frame. He had underestimated the man. He had not made that mistake since.

The man had fought with two whips. They cracked through the air. A constant flurry of pain. As Lazarus had driven his twin blades through the mans chest, his arms had been bleeding profusely. Days later, as he teetered through the deserts, the blood loss had got to him, sapping all strength from him.

It was there he first met the hooded figure. Robes as black as night, sweltering under the hot desert sun, the man had not seemed to mind. He’d carried Lazarus for days, giving him water but never drinking himself.

And when Lazarus was rested and awoke in an inn of foreign folk, he had asked after the hooded figure but the innkeepers were apologetic. He had been found on their doorstep, with a pouch of silver tied around his neck.

Many days later, as he travelled back towards his homelands, Lazarus had found the most peculiar thing in the pockets of his travelling cloak. A small blade of knotgrass, bound and wrapped into the shape of a key.

And in that instant he knew. Death had marked him for his own. No man could kill him, for Death would be the one who claimed this mans soul for himself.

And now, as the suns set and Lazarus felt the cold begin to bite deeper, he felt the hooded man settle down beside him, to watch the last sunset he’d ever see.

Prompt originally posted by orangek1tty on reddit and received 1 upvotes.

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