1. abolethmage

    abolethmage New Member

    Aug 20, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Brookings, SD

    The abolethmage's entry: The All-Seeing Heart

    Discussion in 'Strong Character Contest' started by abolethmage, Sep 22, 2007.

    By: Jon Vogl


    “Thank you very much. B’sure to come again…” the short man said to an elderly woman as she walked out of his small shop. He stepped outside. A cool wind caressed his wrinkly face. The breeze tugged at his black blindfold draped around his sightless eyes. The chill air found its way between his beer soiled, black beard, kept tidy by a small belt wrapped around it. His dark blue clothing absorbed the faint sunlight leaking through the heavy clouds. He heard the creaking of the sign hanging above the door that said ‘The Blind Eye’. His large muscles began tense up, and he turned to walk back into his tiny shop.

    “Get outa’ town,” a passerby shouted at the short man, “Dwarf!” he put all disgust he could muster into the word. The old dwarf reluctantly brushed off the insult and slammed the door behind him. He leaned against the solid door and let out a sigh of grief. He felt his way along his inexpensive furniture to his large chair where he spent many of his hours plotting and getting drunk.

    He sat down, and let out another sigh. The dwarf sat back and pictured his small home in his mind, the same way it was before he “turned blind”. A large table with intricate carvings, accompanied by three snug chairs, sat in the middle of the room. Creaky wooden planks made up the floor of the building. Large bookshelves holding various books, alchemy items, and food goods lined the walls. One window, next to the front door, provided light into the dwarf’s home. A thick layer of dust covered everything and made the house look unoccupied.

    He reached for his mug of ale and took a big gulp. Beer dripped down his face and was caught by his beard. The dwarf relaxed and started to create new “fortunes” for the next week’s customers who want to know the future. He smiled to himself. “How can people be so idiotic ta’ think that a person can act’ally tell the future with psycho powers?” he asked to the empty room. He laughed and took another drink. The ale was starting to get to him now, “Now only a foolhardy Tall-One would ever believe dis shi…” he burped and continued, “No dwarf would ever ba’lieve me or any so called psychic. Da dim-witted elves would say, ‘Oh, goody let’s see what will happen en da future’, when dey know perfectly well that dey really don’t care. No one can wait. They have ta’ know e’rythin’. That’s da problem with society nowa’ days, da Tall-Ones are too edgy. Now us dwarves,” a hiccup interrupted him, “we live e’ryday to its fullest, an we love da surprises our life has en store for us, an me, an ya’. Ha! Is dere really a reason ta fear da footure?” He laughed in his seat until his sides began to hurt.

    “Yes there is, Konus.” A middle age man walked in from the back room. His tall height and long black hair made him an intimidating figure. A large nose took up a lot of his face. Black clothing covered his skinny figure and his many hidden daggers. The man walked over to the large table and took a seat in one of the low chairs. He drew a long dagger from his boot and balanced it on the tip of his finger.

    “Hey?” Konus asked, half drunk, “Dat you Jos?” He was answered by a deep grunt. “Good. D’ya wan’a drink?”

    “No. Now sober up and listen,” Jos said. “You have been making your payments late for the past three moons. Now your payments have just stopped coming. You know the guild master won’t be happy about this. Something bad may suddenly happen if you know what I mean.”

    Konus was listening now. He writhed uncomfortably in his seat, “Oh, come on Jos. Business is slow, and no one else en dis town wants their fortunes told. You have ta’ understand.”
    “I understand, but I don’t think the guild master will find it in his heart to understand,” he replied absently. He pondered for a while as he stared at the blind dwarf. He stood up and walked up behind Konus’s chair and whispered into his ear. “There is one way he may change his mind about your situation…”

    “What? I’ll do anythin’,” he blurted out.

    “Shh! I’ll tell you as long as you keep quiet about it.” Konus nodded in reply. “’K, the guild master has fallen ill. None of the physicians can seem to heal him. Well, since you can see the future…tell me what the cure is.”

    Konus jumped to his feet. “I just can’t tell the future willy-nilly whenever I want,” he remarked, he thought quickly and said with an tentative tone, “I need to, um, use my scrying techniques to see something that is this important.”

    “What ever, just make sure you have the answer when I come back next moon, 3 days,” he stated, “or else you can say goodbye to everything you’ve ever known or will know.” He cursed the blind dwarf under his breath and left out the back door.

    Konus sighed. He sat still until he knew that Jos was gone. The dwarf finally took off his blindfold, and rubbed his eyes until they got used to the light. He stood up and lit a few candles to brighten up the gloomy room. Konus walked over to the largest bookshelf, searched for a book. “Aler…Cure al…Ah! Here it is!” He pulled a large book from the shelf, and blew the dust off of it. Taking a seat at the table, he opened up the book and began his research. He needed to make up a good cure for this predicament.


    “Shh!” Konus silenced the woman across the table that kept asking questions. The blindfolded dwarf sat silently and mumbled to himself. “You are…you will…” he paused, “inherit a large amount of gold soon.”

    The woman’s eyes lit up, “Gold! When? How? Inherit? What do you mean inherit?”

    “Well, someone close to you is going to pass away in a tragic accident,” he answered.

    She stood up, and with tears in her eyes she sobbingly asked, “Who? When? Why? How?”

    “I can’t tell you that, but maybe a little extra change may get you a hint.”

    “How much?” the women asked as she pulled out a coin pouch and placed it on the table.

    The dwarf felt along the table. His hand felt the pouch and he snatched it away. “This’ll do. Your father will die in a fire three moons from now.”

    “My father is already dead!”

    Konus thought on his feet and asked, “Really? Sometimes my predictions are very difficult to interpret. How did he die?”

    “He disappeared along time ago. I haven’t seen him since I was a little girl! My whole family said he was dead. Give my gold back, you thief!”

    The dwarf grinned, “You just interpreted the vision yourself. Your father never died. He left your mother and moved to some other town. So, he now lives in this town, and he will die in a fire soon. You are lucky, for you are still in his will. He never thought about changing it.”

    The woman thought it over. “Oh…I never would have known. Should I try to find him and warn him?”

    “You can, but it won’t matter. He has to die. This is the time the Immortals have set for him. If not by fire it will be by some other accident.”

    She gathered her things and walked slowly to the door. Konus said, “Thanks for your business.” The woman didn’t reply and closed the door behind her.

    Konus relaxed. He tore off his blindfold. “You are gettin’ to old for this”, he thought to himself. The dwarf was extremely tired. He spent the past three days studying various diseases and cures for his meeting with Jos. Swindling the head of the thieves’ guild is a job no one should ever take lightly.

    The dwarf ran through his plan again, somewhere around the twentieth time. Jos would come back and ask for the cure. Konus would tell him that, through his visions, he has learned the cause of the disease. A rat carrying the Tecral Plague, a disease that, over extremely long periods of time, can lead to partial paralysis, supposedly, bit the guild master. He would then tell Jos to take a powder that Konus prepared and tell the guild master to drink the medication three times a day, until the symptoms subside. And before Jos even knows that it is a fake cure, Konus will have left the town. A flawless plan, for Jos is too stupid read the master con artist’s lie.

    The door to his shop cracked open. Konus scrambled to put his blindfold on. “W-who goes there?” he shouted as he adjusted the cloth covering his eyes.

    “Jus’ me boss,” a voice said, and in walked in a short dwarf.

    Konus calmed down. “You scared me, Brus,” he said as he took off his blindfold.

    “Sorry boss, you have any more jobs needin’ to be done?”

    “Actually yes,” Konus replied to the other dwarf. The short dwarf walked over to the table and pulled out a small sheet of paper and he grabbed a quill to write with from one of the bookshelves. “Precisely two moons from now, I need you to set fire to one of the buildings in the housing sector. Make sure it is a big fire, too.”

    Brus wrote down his assignment. “That it?” he asked.

    “Yup, you can retire early tonight,” Konus replied, “I’m expectin’ company.” Without words, Brus stood up and walked out of the shop, closing the door tight behind him. Konus felt bad for the kid. He never wanted anyone else have to grow up like he did, but Brus always seemed miserable. “Maybe I should tell him…” his thoughts were interrupted by a knock at the back door.

    Konus jumped to his feet, rushed to the door, and put his blindfold on securely. He opened the door. Jos busted in, his face was wet with sweat and his speech jumbled. “You…I need you to…you’re coming with me,” he settled down and collected his thoughts. “Grab your things. The guild master is fading and the council has sent me to fetch you. I’ll take you to the guild. Hurry up!”


    “No time for questions. Grab your things and what ever you need to help the guild master,” Jos paced the floor, “Come on!”

    The dwarf felt his way around the room and gathered his things and the fake curing powder. His
    plans were ruined. He thought to himself, “Just roll with it. They still think you are a psychic and that you can cure the master. Act normal Konus.” He wrote a small note to Brus explaining why he was leaving.

    “’Bout time,” Jos said, “Let’s hurry.” With that the thief and Konus left the city and traveled to the kingdom city of Taegda.


    Konus’s disability made the journey slow going. After traveling the entire night, Jos reluctantly decided to stop and rest in a small encampment. The dwarf couldn’t sleep. His thoughts kept drifting on how to get out of this situation. He made his mind up. He would just roll with what ever happened at the guild, he really didn’t care what happened to him any more.

    Jos let him wander the encampment while he gathered up supplies. Konus found the camp to be quite snug. A smoke column rose from a makeshift blacksmith across the street from a small fish market. Smells of baked goods and cooked meats filled the air. One small stand caught Konus’s blind eye. The stand had a large image of a glowing crystal ball accompanied by the name ‘The Seer’.

    The dwarf moseyed himself over to the stand. He tried to peer over the tall stand, but it was too tall and he too short. An extremely old woman walked out from behind the stand, and moved a small stool next to the dwarf. Konus worked his way up on the stool, and took a seat across the elderly lady. The wrinkles on her face were large enough for Konus to map out every one of them through his black blindfold. She wore a scarf over hair, and long gowns over her tiny, mangled frame. A small sign read ‘Have your fortune told, for a small donation’.

    Konus reached into his pocket and pulled out a shiny gold coin and placed it on the table. The woman snatched the coin. “So, you need to know the future, eh?” The dwarf nodded in reply. Listening to the woman seemed like a good chance to get some new ideas for his future clients.

    She raised her hands and sat still. Her mouth moved but no words came out. The wrinkles around her eyes shifted as her eyes twitched upward uncontrollably. She finally spoke, “The lone who fools the weak, will present the other his start. What revolution shall ensue will not be meek, but show, allocate, raze his heart.” Her arms fell, and she sat still, head looking to the sky.

    Konus sat there for a while but nothing happened. He heard Jos’s voice from behind him. Reluctantly he left the old woman, and Jos helped him find the way out of the camp. The dwarf couldn’t stop thinking about what the old woman had predicted. Pondering his thoughts, he was helped onto a small horse. Jos led the horse down the road and to Taegda.

    After a days worth of walking, they finally reached the city. A magnificent city it was. The whitewashed castle stood in the center of the town. Streets bustled with everyday business. Taverns puffed out clouds of laughter and music, while the bakery filled the air with sweet smells of pastries. Colorful cobblestone streets gave the city a unique touch.

    Jos led the blind dwarf through the many hidden alleyways. Taegda’s bad side showed in the side streets. Homeless begged for money, or were lying on the ground slowly dying from starvation. Rats crawled all over, chewing on whatever garbage they could find.

    They stopped at a beat down building. Its windows were all shattered and boarded up. The wall’s many cracks threatened to tumble the building at any second. Jos walked up to the door and rapped a series of taps on the door. The door opened slowly, a young man’s head popped out.

    “It’s you,” he said thankfully, “That him? Well, hurry up, bring him in. I’ll take care of your horse.”

    Jos helped Konus into the beat down building. Nothing but old tables and chairs filled the room. He was led down a series of hidden stairs and into a room filled with hundreds of thieves. Thieves of all kinds filled the room. Tall ones, fat ones, skinny ones, short ones, dexterous ones, clumsy ones were all present. Jos hurried him through the crowd and into a large back room.

    The room was filled with exquisite furniture. Large desks, dressers, and bookshelves lined the walls. A grand bed sat in the center of the room. On the bed was a sickly man. Konus was led up to the guild master’s side. “Describe his appearance and conditions to me,” he ordered to Jos, even though he could see all he needed to.

    “His skin is pure white. Black blotches cover his skin in small dots. His hands and feet are swollen to double their size, and his eyes are crusted shut tight,” Jos responded.

    “Leave me to my work,” Konus told him. Jos listened and hurried out the door.

    The dwarf quickly took off his blindfold and wrapped it around his mouth and nose. Konus recognized the disease as soon as he saw the man. It was the Plague. The master was only a day or two away from his end. The only thing he could do was act like he had treated him to the best of his ability, and to tell Jos the bad news. Konus walked over to one of the tables to prepare the mixture he had made up in his shop. He fetched a cup and water and began to mix the concoction together. While mixing, a letter caught his eye. He picked it up and read it to himself.

    He shouldn’t have read the letter. It described the guild’s plan to assassinate the king and queen. Konus couldn’t let anyone know he had seen the letter. He took it and shoved it in his pocket. His thoughts raced. “What should I do? Before I would never care about something like this, but now I feel like I have to redeem myself and atone for my wrong doings. Is this the change the seer was talking about? Am I truly to meet my end?”

    Jos burst into the room. “How is he? Why is your blindfold…?” he paused. Konus was in for it now. “You’re not blind are you?”

    “Well, you see…it-it helps business, and…uh…um,” Konus babbled.

    “Never mind, how is the guild master?”

    “Well, I need to give him this, but…” he was cut off by Jos.

    “Yes,” Jos stepped outside the door and shouted, “The master is going to be fine!” A loud cheer answered him from the group of thieves who hated liars. He walked over to Konus, “Good job dwarf. Here I’ll give this to him. You better get out of here, you understand, right?”

    Konus was stuck. He couldn’t back out now.

    “Here is some gold. Go get yourself a room at one of the taverns for the night. I’ll lead you home tomorrow.” Konus walked across the room, but was stopped by Jos, “Don’t worry, your secret is safe with me.”

    The dwarf was thanked by many a thief out in the large room. He eventually worked his way out of the guildhalls, out of the alleys, and back onto the streets. Konus wandered for a while. Thoughts of the dying guild master, the assassination of the king and queen, and the fortune told to him by the old woman filled his mind. He decided to stay at the ‘Dragon’s Belly’, a decent looking tavern. A warm fireplace gave the tavern a soft glow. The sounds of patrons having a merry time filled the air. He rented a small room and ordered a drink as he tried to collect his thoughts.


    Konus got no rest that night. His thoughts refused to give him the comfort of sleep. Throughout the night the dwarf went up to his room, came back down to get a drink, went back to his bed, then came back down to get something to eat. He settled on a small chair at a small table and just sat.

    The moon was beginning to set. Rays of dim light shined in through the windows. The patrons started to wake up, eat and drink, and feel the effects of their hangovers. Sounds of the kitchen set the tone for the morning meal. Konus wasn’t hungry. His stomach was turning. He had a feeling that something bad was going to happen.

    Business in the tavern continued slowly. The large door leading into the tavern flung open. A short dwarf rushed in. It was Brus! Konus caught his searching gaze, and Brus hurried over. “Bad news…” the short dwarf said before he was interrupted by a group of five knights.

    “Where is the dwarf known as Konus the All Seeing?” the leader of the knights shouted out. They each wore a full set of shining plate mail. The sigma of the king shone brightly on their chests. All but the leader had on helmets. The leader was an older man that had little hair. He saw Brus and Konus and led the group of soldiers over.

    “Konus?” he asked.

    His stomach was aching now. Sweat began to drip down his forehead. “Yes…” he saw something in the corner of his eye. Jos and two other tall thieves were sitting at a table in the corner of the room. He looked to the bar. The bartender was gone. Instead a thief from the guild stood behind the counter.

    “The king of Taegda has requested your presence in his grand hall. Your skills as a soothsayer has peaked the interest of the king. We will escort you to the castle now,”

    Konus feared for his life now. More thieves appeared at other tables and the back rooms. Jos stood up and walked over towards Konus. “We better go,” Konus muttered as he stood up. The warriors and the two dwarfs started toward the door. Jos stopped in front of the leader and stared into his eyes.

    “You have a problem?” the leader asked the thief.

    “Actually yes,” Jos replied. In the blink of an eye, he pulled out a long dagger and pressed it up against the leader’s neck. “You think my blade is sharp enough?”

    The other soldiers dropped their swords and backed away to prevent anything happening to their captain. Konus and Brus pressed their backs against the wall. The other thieves walked over to the knights, took off their helmets, and held their daggers against their necks. Jos gave the responsibility of watching his prisoner to another thief, and he walked over to the dwarves.

    “Oh, tell me the future Konus,” Jos mocked, “You think you can get away with scamming the thieves guild. No one is that cunning.”

    Konus squirmed. The seer’s prediction was coming true. He tried to explain, but his stomach threatened to explode if he tried.

    Jos knelt down to the dwarves’ eye level. “You killed our master!” he shouted. He stood up and snapped his fingers. One of thieves guarding a young knight let his knife bite into the man’s neck. The warrior fell to the ground in a puddle of blood. “You got yourself into a world of trouble. Now you,” he pointed to all the knights and Brus, “and all your friends are going to pay for everything you did.”

    Konus never admitted to anything or went out of the way to help others. The words of the old lady went through his mind. He knew what he had to do. “Jos! Don’t do this. They did nothing to you,” Konus said unwillingly. “It’s me you want. Let them go.”

    Jos laughed. “You finally grew a backbone. I’ve known you for a long time. You were always a coward,” he paused. “I need a good reason to let them go.”

    Konus thought. “That letter I wrote back at my shop, you remember. Well, I know you think I can’t see the future, but I knew that someday something like this would happen.” He walked foreword to maintain a calm composure. “On that letter I left directions to your guild house. Once people know I’m dead they will search my shop, and find the letter before your or any of your henchmen have a chance to travel down there. You can guess what will happen then.”

    The thieves started talking amongst themselves. Jos quieted his gang. “How did you know the directions in the first place?” he asked.

    “My assistant,” Konus turned to Brus, “or rather, my son,” Brus’s fearful, miserable expression turned to a look of surprise. “I told my son to follow you some time ago and to write down the directions to your guild house.”

    A look of failure showed on Jos’s face. “Let the others go, but Konus you and your son stay.”

    “No!” Konus shouted. He quickly reached into his pocket and walked over to his son’s side and wrapped his arm around him. “My son leaves too,” he said to thieves. Jos let out a loud laugh and turned his back to the group. Konus took the opportunity to skillfully stick the letter explaining the plot to kill the king and queen into his son’s pocket. “Take this to the king,” he whispered to Brus. The short dwarf nodded with tears in his eyes.

    Konus quickly picked up one of the knights swords and charged at Jos. Jos turned around and dodged the raging dwarf. The other thieves abandoned their posts to help protect their new leader. Konus wildly swung the sword every direction. He shouted a loud battle cry every time the sword struck flesh.

    Brus and the other knights took the opportunity to escape. They hurried toward the door. A few thieves tried to stop them, but the impenetrable armor and sheer strength overwhelmed the criminals. The short dwarf reached the door. He looked back at his father. Five arrows stuck out of his father’s body, but he refused to fall. Konus looked to his son with a look that said, “I’m sorry.”

    The short dwarf left his father. A feeling of pride, sadness, and anger filled his heart. His father gave the ultimate sacrifice to save his son, and Brus was going to make sure good came of it. The knights and Brus hurried over to the castle, the only place they knew they would be safe.


    The dead of night devoured everything. Inside the king’s sleeping chambers, the king and queen slept soundly. Faint moonlight shone in through the windows. Suddenly, one of the windows creaked open. A tall hooded man snuck in through the small opening. He drew a long dagger and started towards the bed.

    “Halt! Get him!” shouts came from the dark corners of the room. The cloaked man stopped in surprise. In a flash he was surrounded by a large group of knights. Servants of the king and queen rushed into the room with torches and candles, shedding light to the room. Jos struggled to get free but to no prevail. They led the would be assassin out of the room.
    As he was being escorted to the gallows, Jos saw a familiar face in the corner of his eye. Brus sat in a large chair near the door. “You’re dead dwarf! You will feel the wrath of the guild!” Jos shouted.

    “He can’t hear you,” one of the soldiers said, “he’s deaf!”

    “No he isn’t…his father…he can…” Jos stammered.

    Brus watched him with delight. The dwarf winked at Jos as he left the room. Sounds of the thief struggling and cursing were heard from the hallway. Eventually the sounds dissipated.
    A maid walked over to Brus with a piece of paper. The dwarf took the paper and began to read it. ‘He got what he had coming. Lucky thing you warned us. This shouldn’t happen anymore now that the guild house was found and destroyed. How did you know, Royal Physician?’ He grabbed a pen from the nearby table and wrote a reply on the paper. He handed the paper to the maid.

    She took the paper and read it. ‘The son of a true psychic knows everything.’
  2. abolethmage

    abolethmage New Member

    Aug 20, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Brookings, SD
    hey i want comments too please
  3. mollyburton

    mollyburton New Member

    Jun 30, 2007
    Likes Received:
    The Mox.
    I'm not sure what to say about your story, because I didn't actually read it. I found it hard for my unrested poor eyeballs with the lack of paragraphs. I will try tomorrow, after a couple hours of sleep and a couple caffeine pills.
  4. abolethmage

    abolethmage New Member

    Aug 20, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Brookings, SD
    Hope that breaking up the paragraphs makes it easier to read.
  5. Cogito

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    May 19, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Massachusetts, USA
    People generally don't comment much on contest entries while the contest is still in progress. After the contest ends, you could post the story or an excerpt in the Review Room forums for in-depth comments.
  6. abolethmage

    abolethmage New Member

    Aug 20, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Brookings, SD
    ok i just saw other people commenting on other peoples stories an i felt left out.

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