Machina [MACHINE] by Keiron Tonge

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SUMMARY: A future so advanced that people arwe afraid of dependency on technology but this becomes too much for one man who becomes technology...

Machina [MACHINE]

Part One...

The heavy, metal plating of the greaves clattered along the cobbles of the city. all arond buildings no more than two floors tall stood in neat lines along the side of neat roads and creeping plants hung from the worn masonry of every building. shutters were closed tight by the binding foliage.

The man stopped at a rotten wooden door that hung feebly from its hinges and inspected the metal handle. He stood and made his decision. He would spend the night here. With minimal effort he waved his hand and a wind rose up between him and the door. The miniature maelstrom pushed against the door and split it in two casting it across the room within.

The man inspected the room it was adequate. A stone fireplace stood against the back wall with the remnants of the door sitting comfortably around it making his next task easier. He kicked the remains of the wood into the fireplace and looked around. next to the fireplace was a table and stool and that was all there was left. All of the possesions of the former inhabitants were gone.

He slung his pack onto the table and sat himself on the stool propping his sword up against the wall next to him and unsheathed his dagger and used it to cut strips of the salted pork in his pack and he sat chewing for a while until the meat was finished. He took then from his bag a small goblet and waved his hand over it and from his palm fell a splash of water into the goblet which he sipped slowly.

Outside rain had begun to fall from the dark clouds above and lightening leaped through the air in majestic arcs. But over the monotonous beat of the rain there came the click of horse shoes on the road. They came to the building that the man was in and stopped outside noticing the splinters of wood on the floor.

Inside the man withdrew to the top floor and slit the weeds holding the shutters closed and he opened them to see the men dimounting their horses. There were four of them and four horses clad in mail and scarlet painted chest plates.

The man knew they were here for him, they were always following behind sometimes days or weeks and sometimes minutes and this was the ideal place to finish them off. An abandoned city. Perfect.

One of the men was now at the bottom of the stairs and a perfect target for a quick kill. Without hesitation he leaped down the stone steps, dagger glinting in the soft light, and grabbed the back of the mans helmet lifting it enough to slip the dagger in and sever his spine. The villain dropped to the floor with a clatter of armour and the other three turned around to see him holding the bloodied kinfe in his hand.

The nearest one launched himself at him but proved unsucessful as the man summoned a ball of flame into his hand and let a jet of fire stream across the room turning it into an inerno.
The sizzling heat blurred his vision. Or was it the heat. On closer inspection the flames looked pixellated...