Even with his armour shattered, the King was still a dangerous foe, and I was prone to making mistakes as I wanted to end the clash before his icy armour was restored. I was hurt, battered, exhausted, but I remained in the offensive, showering my foe with one brutal attack after another. His now skeletal form seemed frail, but it was still quite durable and it would seem that the destruction of his armour allowed him to move more easily. But then, he did a slight misstep during one of his dodges and he stumbled a bit. It was a slight mistake, but enough to allow me to do one final blow. I did a heavy overhead swing and I was about to strike my enemy with all my might right into his skull. But my strike never landed, for as I had raised the axe above my head and used my strength to bring it down, I was unable to. Something was holding my axe in place, but there was not a single living being around us. I looked up, and I saw the culprit of my misfortune; the runic cloth that was no longer on my rival’s weapon, it was wrapped around mine almost as if it had a mind of its own, and was preventing me from landing the decisive blow. Seeing my predicament, the King opted for a counterattack, I knew that I would not be fast enough to dodge, so I used all my power to bring my axe down so I could block the mighty counter attack. The blow shook with my like a mighty storm would, the cloth that was wrapped around my axe was obliterated in the attack, and fortunately it seemed to absorb most of the damage. Yet the axe didn’t go without damage neither; it was probably only due to its nature that it was not in shatters, but it certainly wasn’t in the best condition for combat now; twisted and bent to a strong degree. With the axe not in a state that could make it a usable weapon and with my small insignificant dagger, that would be unable to penetrate the king’s defences, I focused my attention on the only thing in the vicinity that might be used as an instrument of battle… Unfortunately, the thing was now in the hands of something that would not give it away willingly. While my mind was racing, I had to dodge and deflect my enemy’s attacks, but I was unable to escape them all. While they lacked the raw strength of the previous attacks, they were still dangerous, and have taken their toll on my body. Seeing the ice armour slowly reforming around my foe, I knew I had mere seconds to act before all would be ruined. I gave everything I had into one desperate effort. Faking a misstep, a stumble, I hoped that my foe would take the bait… and he did. Thinking he had me at his mercy, he tried to end me with one powerful vertical overhead slash. He was exposing his whole skeletal body, but he had nothing to fear as I had no means of endangering him, or so he thought. One could thing that a bent axe would be useless, however it had the perfect shape for what I was about to do. I charged right at my enemy and I plunged my axe right into his upper ribs, handle first. I then pushed it further until the end of the handle went through the gap between his right collar bone and shoulder blade. The curved blade of the axe got stuck between the ribs and I hoped neither the ribs nor the blade would break. I heard a cracking of bone and wood…but no snap ensued. My adversary was unable to bring down his sword upon him, as there was an axe inside of him, that made it impossible to do so. I quickly grabbed the grip of his sword and jerked it away. He might have been holding unto it with all his strength, but his strength was fuelled by hate and vengeance; I was fighting to save my people, my home, everything I had left. I snatched the sword from his hand and did an upward diagonal cut aiming at his neck. I don’t know what fell to the ground first, whether it was I overcome with exhaustion, or the rotten skeletal head of the first and only barbarian king. But relief had not yet come to me, I had one final score to settle.