Fighting God Chapter 7: Enslavement
Pain coursed through Aldred’s body as he gasped awake. He rubbed his bruised side and looked around. It was dark save a bright light coming from a doorway…wait, a doorway?! Weren’t they outside near the Shimmering Savannah? W-where was he?
Suddenly, his senses flashed in alarm as another kick smashed into his side. “Aarrgh!”
“Git up ya slave!” Someone slurred.
What? Slave? What happened? Aldred tried to clear his mind as the pain numbed his sides. He looked up and saw a gnarly looking fat man. “W-where am I?”
“Heh! Slaves ain’t supposed ta talk!”
“Haha, forgit ya dinna know. Ya was sold ta us jist yesterday. Now git up! It’s time for the masta ta examine ye wares.”
Sold yesterday? Fuck! That son of a bitch! No wonder he didn’t provide us with badges. Does that mean that school isn’t legit? Wait…wares…where are the others? Aldred thought.
From the corner of his eye, another kick came rushing towards his face. Aldred rolled to the side and scrambled up only to be rapped in the head.
“Don’t ya dare dodge ya trash! Stop wastin’ my time and git outta here!”
Aldred groaned in pain and dizziness. Not wanting to suffer from another beating, he stumbled out of the dark room. Bright light pierced his eyes, blinding him for a while until his eyes adjusted to the changes. Looking around, he sees many battered, dirty, and naked people lined up in rows – men and women both. Aldred was roughly pushed towards a newly formed row.
“Everyone of ye trash strip now and prepare ta be examined!” A slave overseer shouted.
People in the row that Aldred was in started stripping. One of the women didn’t strip quick enough and was subsequently whipped. Seeing this, Aldred quickly stripped as well. He didn’t want to be hit again. When everyone was stripped, a door to their left opened. Everyone looked at the entrance in anticipation. Footsteps were heard and three figures appeared. It was the tattooed guy from last night! His name…was Gano. Behind him was the scarfaced…um…Nial and another guy who looked like a gentleman or butler.
Dammit! I knew something was suspicious when that bastard brought those two people to camp out of nowhere. Aldred cursed.
“Alright folks. As you know already. You have become slaves. A good portion of you will be sent to the mines. Some of you will be sent to the underground auction. And the remainder will be put on display for purchase. Now, which path you will be sent to will be decided by your health and affinities.” Gano spoke as he gestured the two men behind him to start examining. After Gano finished speaking, he too also began to examine a group.
At this time, Aldred snuck a few peeks at his surroundings. After looking around for a bit, he saw Kory, Manny, and the blond haired Jenny but no sight of the others. Jenny was crying quietly while both Kory and Manny were visibly trembling. When his and Kory’s eyes met, he saw Kory’s eyes were dazed like in a trance as if Kory was looking through him.
Nial approached Jenny and after checking her teeth, body, and affinity, he pushed her towards the butler. “Take this to be displayed.”
When Jenny heard of this, she started screaming and kicking only to be knocked unconscious by the butler. Manny roared in anger and tried to save Jenny only to be smacked back by Nial.
“Feisty this one is. Take him to the mines.” Nial sneered as two slave drivers grabbed a hold of Manny. They placed a collar on Manny’s neck and dragged him away. Then, Nial turned towards Kory and checked him, “Hmph, sent him to the auction. There’s probably someone who is interested.”
Aldred turned his gaze back to Gano who was currently examining his row. Once Gano reached him, the tattooed freak smiled. “I remember you. You’re a cautious one…almost had our cover blown. I recall you were a No-Affinity? Haha, that’s good. There are many who liked collecting rare items. With your status as an “one in a hundred million,” you’ll fetch a decent price. Take him to the auctions.”
Aldred was then dragged away. A neck collar was placed on him and then he was thrown into a cell where all the other slaves who will be auctioned were staying. Aldred groaned as he got up.
“Aldred….” A voice called.
Aldred turned around and saw Kory, who was also naked except for the collar around his neck. He looked at his friend and smiled wryly. “It’s good to see someone I know. I saw Manny get sent to the mines and Jenny put on display. Do you know about the others?”
“No…when I woke up, Audrey, the green haired Jenny, and Luke were gone. Kris…he died. His head caved in…I heard it was because he attacked a slave driver.” Kory sniffed.
“Damn…what about the other four?”
“I didn’t see them. I asked around but it seems no one saw them.”
“Wait…don’t tell me…. I…when I passed out, I didn’t see them falling asleep. They ate the food before us…ah!”
Kory looked at me curiously, “Do you remember something?”
“The bastard who sold us put something in the food after the four got their share! He said it was salt…I bet my life it wasn’t.”
“Then those four….” Kory began.
“…were in on it as well! They knew and yet they still helped! Does that mean there really is a school called Nightingale Institute of Combat Magic?” Aldred finished.
“I don’t know….”
The day passed by and dinner came. It was a big pot full of cold slop. There were no bowls to hold the slop so the slaves had to use their hands. Everyone’s dirty hands had dipped into the pot that by the time it was Kory and Aldred’s turn, they could not stomach the disgusting sight. There was dirt, grease, and slime mixed with the slop making it look like yellowish brown diarrhea. Kory’s stomach turned and he hurled his stomach out, which wasn’t much so only spit came out. Aldred also gagged and moved away from the pot. Some of the slaves, seeing Kory and Aldred not eat, rushed towards the pot to eat the rest. Both Kory and Aldred grimaced at the sight. After the pot was cleaned, it was taken out. Hours passed and it was nighttime or at least Aldred assumed it to be so judging from his internal clock. The slaves fell asleep, they knew that they need as much rest as possible. Suddenly, a groan emitted out.
A man moaned in pain as he held his stomach. With a loud *PFFT!* the man exuded a sickening smell…and then everything came out. A spray of watery shit came flying out from the man and it continued to spray before ending in a trickle. Everyone tried to dodge but some were still hit…even Kory. With nothing to wipe the shit off of their bodies, they could only use their hands.
“Why didn’t they use their abilities to wipe?” Aldred whispered.
“From what I gathered, these collars restrict our abilities.” Kory replied as he grimaced at the shit stain on his body and his hand.
“Really? They had technology like this?”
“Yea, it’s made by the royal court and is usually legally used as confinements for criminals but somehow the slave merchants were able to get their hands on some of these items.”
“Ah….” Aldred wanted to continue but he heard another groan from a corner of the room. Turning his head, he sees another guy start discharging like his life depended on it. Chaos ensues as people tried to dodge. More people started shitting as well. Luckily, Aldred had good footwork and was able dodge the projectiles and a healthy immune system to protect him from an infections caused by the lack of hygiene. The most likely cause of this disaster had to be the slop that was served…the contents didn’t even look edible let alone digestible. Anyways, this goes on for a couple of days – slop, shit, slop, shit…are they cleaning our intestines or something? Many people were weak due to this process, even Kory had contracted a fever. When Aldred asked for help, the slave drivers ignored him. Aldred couldn’t do anything to ease Kory’s pain and suffering so he continued to try and call for help.
Finally, one day, the door finally opened and a huge jet of water poured in. Everyone was soaked. The dirt, grime, and shit were washed off of their bodies. After a while of full blast washing, a voice came from the doorway, “It’s time to move to the auctions! Everyone get out!”
People walked out as more water gets blasted in their faces. Kory and some of the weaker people couldn’t stand the blast and were knocked to their feet. When Aldred told one of the slave drivers that Kory was sick and needed medicine, he nodded and asked to be taken to Kory. Once he saw Kory, he nodded again before telling Aldred to go ahead and get ready to depart. Aldred left thinking that the slave driver would heal Kory.
When the slave driver saw Aldred leave, he proceeded to gather the other sick people while telling the healthy ones to proceed towards the group that was ready to depart. Once they left, he turned to the sick who were lying or sitting on the ground. Kory peeked up at the slave driver, his face flushed with fever. Kory mumbled something before pain erupted in his eyes. Wide-eyed, Kory looked across his body…at the sword that stuck out from his stomach. Blood rushed out of his mouth as he weakly tried to reach for the blade. The blade twisted and was pulled out sharply, guts and blood spurt out from the opening. Kory’s hand faltered a bit before collapsing. His mouth twitched once…twice…before a sigh escaped. Kory relaxed…his eyes slowly close…and he fell asleep…forever.
The slave driver wiped his bloodied blade and looked at the other sick people. They looked back at him in panic. They were too weak to move…to escape. One by one, the sick people were killed. Then, their bodies were piled together and burned.
Finished with his work, the slave driver left.
Aldred was walking with a group of slaves. They had just departed from the slave market and was heading towards the place where the underground auction will take place. He had a bad feeling when Kory didn’t appear. *Sniff!* He turned his head and saw the source of the smell…smoke in the direction of the slave market! He tried to go back but was pushed along by the slaves behind him. He saw the slave driver that he asked for help come back, a sneer on his face. He saw him cleaning his sword with a cloth. He saw the bloody cloth. Putting two and two together, Aldred was able figure what had happened. Tears streamed down his eyes for the first time since he was born. He felt that it was his fault Kory had died. If he did not tell the slave driver about Kory’s condition, maybe…just maybe he would still be alive. This feeling of guilt ate at him. He was too young and too weak to do anything. He gritted through his pain and feeling of loss. He promised himself…he will have his revenge.