The bleating ended. Only then did the bleeding begin. First it came from their ears in a trickle, brushed away without concern or notice. Then from their nostrils fooling them into thinking the air was filled with the scent of raw iron. For some it slipped between their lips, but this too they ignored. The stress of their endeavor had filled their mouths with the taste of metal so even as their gums began to weep they paid it no mind.
The texture changed as it slipped from beneath their nails and began to coat the fingers. Weapons began to slip. Gauntlets sticky. Boots became mired around the feet of their owners. But in the lack of light of the early dawn few could see their sacrifice.
One sat slumped and tired and resigned. Their robes cast about them, their tools discard, their paraphernalia all but forgotten. They knew the cost. They knew what was asked of those who accompanied them, even if all did not fully comprehend. But to look upon the others as they were given over was too much.
They tried to offer calming, reassuring words to the men around them. But by then their screams had been swallowed. The men were choking on their own blood as it seeped from their eyes and their nostrils and their ears. So any words from the soothsayer were but lost on them.
The one they had called upon now took notice and turned its eyes upon them.
Today’s art is courtesy of Borisut Chamnan from Chaiyaphum, Thailand.