Journey’s End

He scampered up the winding tower stairs that led to the captured princess.  He’d crossed fiery desert, snowy mountains, and dense jungle to reach her.  The door splintered before his dented battle-ax.

She screamed, then tentatively asked “Are you my hero?”

“Princess, I’ve come to set you free.”

“Thank the gods!  And thank you sir, you will be richly rewarded.”

She leapt up and kissed his prickly cheek.

He calmly cut her throat.

She staggered backwards.  Her eyes pled for an explanation as her dingy gown turned red.

“Your hero was getting too close.  We couldn’t risk your escape.”

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