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A gorean love lost

THE PRICE OF FREEDOM
by JuliaMarie

Children of the warrior caste
In the Ar of long ago
They felt sure their love would last
`Til fate dealt them a blow

She grew up noble and fine
His love for her was strong
He often teased "I’ll make you mine,
With me you do belong."

She would laugh, then solemn grow
And tell him once again
The thing that he should by now know
She’d be no slave to men

For her, freedom was a treasure
Which she valued above all
And no promises of pleasure
Could to slavery make her fall

He knew this well, and planned to give
The free companion’s vow
But first he needed funds to live
So let it wait for now

He left and went to fight and roam
With a mercenary band
To earn enough to buy a home
And then ask for her hand

A merchant hired his band to raid
A rival’s caravan
"Kill all the men," he grimly bade
"Let live no free woman."

They were paid well, so laid in wait
To do the gruesome deeds
The wagons neared their awful fate
And met death in the trees

The mercenaries fell upon
The merchant wagon’s group
The overwhelming odds were on
The fierce attacking troupe

Defenders all were quickly slain
The slaves secured and tied=20
Freewomen scattered from the train
For refuge in which to hide

Soldiers took off in hot pursuit
As frightened women fled
He long pursued a running beaut
Clothed in long robes of red

Her legs were short, she had no hope
To outrun her captor’s stride
But she ran on, knowing soon rope
Would stop her, but she tried

Finally he reached the girl
And dropped her to the ground
She turned to him, her robes aswirl
To face him without sound

It was with shock and growing dread
He saw his beloved’s eyes
Gaze at him o`er veils of red
This was no welcome prize

"Alas, my love, why are you here?"
He cried in deep despair
She said "I’ve reached my final year,
And must go to Sardar Fair."

She searched his eyes and quiet said
"Will you release me now?"
"I’m pledged to see free captives dead,"
He said, his sad head bowed.

He looked to her and cried "My dear,
You know what you must do,
You must submit to me right here,
Before others take you."

She drew herself up to her height
And calmly shook her head
"Know me, and know that I will fight
The collar `til I’m dead."

"You have known me since my birth
And you know well why I ran
I’ll not suffer freedom’s dearth
Nor be slave to any man."

"So there is just one gift to give
I beg, give it to me
Please don’t suffer me to live
If it means I can’t be free."

He watched in anguish as she pulled
Her robes back from her breast
And saw the flesh he’d longed to hold
Now could not be carressed

"I ask only that your sword be fast,
And that your aim be true.
Know that when your deed is past,
I’ll have eternal love for you."

The tears ran freely down his face
He knew she’d never sway
He could not suffer the disgrace
Of begging her to stay

If he didn’t slay her soon
Other men would fast arrive
He knew she saw her death a boon
To keep freedom alive.

She watched him as he raised his arm
To strike the fatal blow
The final sleep was not the harm
She sought to never know

And as he plunged the weapon down
He saw no fear in her eyes
Just love and gratitude she found
For his dear sacrifice

A weakened blow his greatest fear
But it was straight and true
He dropped the sword and clutched her near
As she whispered "I love you."

His comrades found him kneeling there
His heart broken in two
They saw the murdered maiden fair
And wondered what to do

He finally lifted his head
And told them what occurred
They dropped their swords and bowed their heads
In respect at what they heard

"Truly," said they of the lass
"In her heart she was free."
And they built a pyre to last
And shine down to the sea

Never before had they known
Women so free and fine
He sighed "She had always shown,
I could not make her mine."

Her memory lived on and on
And as her legend grew
He found it too hard to go on
Without the love he knew

He travelled to the Sardar Fair
The route she couldn’t take
He planned to meet the Priest-Kings there
A final sacrifice to make

And as he passed the final gate
The bells tolled dark and grim
He walked on fearless of his fate
No more was seen of him

But on the days of cold and rain
They say you can faint hear
His voice still full of grief and pain
Calling for his lost love dear