The boys circled in the dirt.
Each jockeyed for an advantage upon his adversary but none would come.
They were untrained, they were unworthy.
Around them the banners of the White Dogs stood in a circle. And the Dogs
themselves screaming for the boys to draw blood. To Kill.
The firepots had been emptied into a great bonfire that burned to stand
near. But the men would not tolerate moving away. One child had been
burned badly tonight already. A boy called Makha. 6 years old and just
taken from the women a few days ago. He would likely not survive.
That would not be the fate for either of these boys though. They were
older and strong. They had fought before and they had killed. They had
ridden behind the Dogs and finished the wounded with their spears and
arrows. They were close to becoming White Dogs themselves.
But they still had to prove the last test. Fear. Terror. They had to
prove that they had no fear. No fear of the fire. No fear of the bloody boy
lying in the sand. No fear of the the injury sure to visit them by the boy
facing them. And most of all no fear of the terrible men who howled around
them. And no fear of the devil-in-flesh who rode at the head of the White
Dogs. Nokhoi. When they no longer had that fear they would be White Dogs.
They would be Terror.
The boys circled in the dirt. Fear must end soon. One would have to