Ei oikeasti parempi. Mutta melkein yhtä hyvä! Priden jälkeisenä sunnuntaina lukupiirimme Pompahtelevien Sukkubusten soturit kokoontuivat urheasti jälleen Kupittaanpuistoon. Suuri tehtävämme? Rekonstruoida kaikki R. A. Salvatoren hämmentävät taistelukohtaukset, joita emme ole voineet demonstroida sisätiloissa!
Olimme valmistautuneet taistoon boffereilla (4), uskomattomalla hatulla (1), kilvellä (1), lasten muovimiekoilla (2), Hobitti-cosplaymiekoilla (2), tikarireplikoilla (2) sekä tarpeellisella määrällä kahvia ja viinaksia. Lopputuloksena oli hervotonta naurua, nurmikolla kieriskelyä ja niin hienoja koreografioita, ettei mitään rajaa. Toisin sanoen suurimman osan aikaa emme ymmärtäneet lainkaan, mitä olisi pitänyt tehdä. ”Sitten hän hyökkäsi monista suunnista..?”
Seuraa pitkällinen selostus lainauksilla varustettuna. Lukekoon ken uskaltaa.
Kaksoisristitorjunta alas potkulla (Kotimaa)
Tämä on Drizztin kuuluisin ja kenties eniten hämmennystä herättävä peliliike. Näin sitä kuvaillaan Kotimaassa, jossa Drizzt ja Zak tappelevat siitä, onko kaksoisristitorjunta hyvä juttu (lainaukset ovat valitettavasti englanniksi, koska kirjoitan tätä junassa).
”Double thrust low”, the weapon master growled, and his swords dove in.
Drizzt was ready for him. He executed the crossdown, smiling smugly at the ring of metal as his scimitars crossed over the thrusting swords. Drizzt then followed through with only one of his blades, thinking he could deflect both of Zak’s swords well enough in that manner. Now with one blade free of the parry, Drizzt spun it over in a devious counter.
As soon as Drizzt reversed the one hand, Zak saw the ploy, a ruse he had suspected Drizzt would try. Zak dropped one of his own sword tips―the one nearest to the hilt of Drizzt’s single parrying blade―to the ground, and Drizzt, trying to maintain an even resistance and balance along the length of the blocking scimitar, lost his balance. Drizzt was quick enough to catch himself before he had stumbled too far, though his knuckles pinched into the stone of the floor. He still believed that he had Zak caught in his trap, and that he could finish his brilliant counter. He took a short step forward to regain his full balance.
The weapon master dropped straight down to the floor, under the arc of Drizzt’s swinging scimitar, and spun a single circuit, driving his booted heel into the back of Drizzt’s exposed knee. Before Drizzt had even realized the attack, he found himself lying flat on his back.
Zak abruptly broke his own momentum and threw his feet back under him. Before Drizzt could begin to understand the dizzying counter, he found the weapon master standing over him with the tip of Zak’s sword painfully and pointedly drawing a tiny drop of blood from his throat.
”Have you anything more to say?” Zak growled.
”The parry is wrong.” Drizzt answered.
Tämä on vielä kohtuullisen ymmärrettävää. Tosin missään vaiheessa ei kerrota, millaiset aseet Zaknafeinilla on. Koska niihin viitataan vain miekkoina, kun taas Drizztin sapeleista (scimitars) tehdään aina numero, niin oletimme, että Zakilla on kaksi suoraa miekkaa. Eniten hämmennystä herätti asemestarin pyörähdys: ”The weapon master dropped straight down to the floor, under the arc of Drizzt’s swinging scimitar, and spun a single circuit, driving his booted heel into the back of Drizzt’s exposed knee.” Pudottautuu lattialle? Miten ja ennen kaikkea miksi? Entä mitä single circuit tarkoittaa? Eri variaatiot eivät tuottaneet toivottavaa lopputulosta. Parhaassa versiossamme väistettiin sivulle eikä kaatuiltu mihinkään. Ehkä Zak vain haluaa esitellä hienoja kierimispyörimisliikkeitään.
Luonnollisesti Drizzt nuoruuden angstissaan keksii ratkaisun torjuntaongelmaan.
With all the anger he had ever known, all the disappointments of his young life gathering within his foot, Drizzt focused on Zak. That smug face, feigning smiles and drooling for blood. Between the hilts, between the eyes, Drizzt kicked, blowing out every ounce of rage in a single blow.
Zak’s nose crunched flat. His eyes lolled upward, and blood exploded over his hollow cheeks.
Tämä on jo astetta jännittävämpää. Ilmeisesti Drizztin versiossa potkaistaan vastustajaa naamaan omien ristittyjen sapelien kahvojen välistä. Tämä yhdellä jalalla hyppely tuntuu huonolta ajatukselta – vastustajan tarvitsisi vain tökätä Drizztiä otsaan, niin hän menettäisi tasapainonsa, tai vaihtoehtoisesti napata kiinni koivesta ja heittää menemään. Saa olla aika hiton notkea, että pystyy potkaisemaan naamaan sapeleiden välistä, mutta on se periaatteessa mahdollista. Omat aseet vain ovat aika pahasti tiellä. Koko manööveri kaatuu, ellei ole järjettömän nopea, koska jos vastustaja tajuaa, mitä tapahtuu… Toisaalta ajattelimme, että ehkä tarkoituksena onkin aiheuttaa yleistä hämmennystä.
Eeppinen taistelu Calimportin viemäreissä (Puolituisen kivi)
Ah, Calimportin viemärit, yksi suosikkitaistelujani nuoruusvuosilta! Voi noita kauniita aikoja, kun Drizztiä vielä kiinnosti tapella Entrerin kanssa… Salamurhaajalla on aseistuksenaan jonkinlainen sapeli (saber) ja tikari. Tämän kirjan jälkeen sapeli unohdetaan.
The shadows to his left exploded into motion, and Drizzt caught the telltale shine of a blade just in time to turn his back from the angle of the blow. He staggered forward, feeling a burning across his shoulder blades and then the wetness of his blood rolling down under his cloak.
Drizzt ignored the pain, knowing that any hesitation would surely result in his death, and spun around, slamming his back into the wall and sending the curved blades of both his scimitars into a defensive spin before him.
Entreri issued no taunts this time. He came in furiously, cutting and slicing with his saber, knowing that he had to finish Drizzt before the shock of the ambush wore off. Viciousness replaced finesse, engulfing the injured assassin in a frenzy of hatred.
He leaped into Drizzt, locking one of the drow’s arms under his own wounded limb and trying to use brute strength to drive his saber into his opponent’s neck.
Drizzt steadied himself quickly enough to control the initial assault. He surrendered his one arm to the assassin’s hold, concentrating solely on getting his free scimitar up to block the strike. The blade’s hilt again locked with that of Entreri’s saber, holding it motionless in midswing halfway between the combatants.
Behind their respective blades, Drizzt and Entreri eyeballed each other with open hatred, their grimaces only inches apart.
”How many crimes shall I punish you for, assassin?” Drizzt growled. Reinforced by his own proclamation, Drizzt pushed the saber back an inch, shifting the angle of his own deadly blade down more threateningly toward Entreri.
Entreri did not answer, nor did he seem alarmed at the slight shift in the blades’ momentum. A wild, exhilarated look came into his eyes, and his thin lips widened into an evil grin.
Drizzt knew that the killer had another trick to play.
Before the drow could figure the game, Entreri spat a mouthful of filthy sewer water into his lavender eyes.
Klassinen miekkamme juuttuivat yhteen -tuijotus! Muuten tämä on harvinaisen ymmärrettävä kohtaus. Jäimme vain miettimään, miten pitkään Entreri on pitänyt viemärivettä suussaan voidakseen sylkäistä sen Drizztin naamalle.
The sting and shock of the water broke Drizzt’s concentration, and his strength, for only a split second, but he knew that even a split second was too long against Artemis Entreri. He jerked his head to the side desperately.
Entreri snapped his saber down, slicing a gash across Drizzt’s forehead and crushing the drow’s thumb between the twisting hilts. ”I have you!” he squealed, hardly believing the sudden turn of events.
At that horrible moment, Drizzt could not disagree with the observation, but the drow’s next move came more on instinct than on any calculations, and with agility that surprised even Drizzt. In the instant of a single, tiny hop, Drizzt snapped one foot behind Entreri’s ankle and tucked the other under him against the wall. He pushed away and twisted as he went. On the slick floor, Entreri had no chance to dodge the trip, and he toppled backward into the murky stream, Drizzt splashing down on top of him.
The weight of Drizzt’s heavy fall jammed the crosspiece of his scimitar into Entreri’s eye. Drizzt recovered from the surprise of his own movement faster than Entreri, and he did not miss the opportunity. He spun his hand over on the hilt and reversed the flow of the blade, pulling it free of Entreri’s and swinging a short cut back and down, with the tip of the scimitar diving in at the assassin’s ribs. In grim satisfaction, Drizzt felt it begin to cut in.
It was Entreri’s turn for a move wrought of desperation. Having no time to bring his saber to bear, the assassin punched straight out, slamming Drizzt’s face with the butt of his weapon. Drizzt’s nose splattered onto his cheek, flashes of color exploded before his eyes, and he felt himself lifted and dropped off to the side before his scimitar could finish its work.
Entreri scrambled out of reach and pulled himself from the murky water. Drizzt, too, rolled away, struggling against the dizziness to regain his feet. When he did, he found himself facing Entreri once again, the assassin even worse off than he.
Entreri looked over the drow’s shoulder, to the tunnel and the charging dwarf and to Catti-brie and her killer bow, coming up level with his face. He jumped to the side, to the iron rungs, and started up to the street.
Tässähän on tunnetta! Ja mutapainia! Rekonstruktio onnistui mainiosti. Ymmärsimme, mitä oli tarkoitus tapahtua. Hyvä, Salvatore, hyvä! En tiedä, toistuuko tämä enää.
Jarlaxlen parkourshow kristallisauvassa (Äänetön veitsi)
Äänetön veitsi on kauhea kirja. Niin kauhea, että olin unohtanut loppupuolen käsittämättömän kaksintaistelun ja Jarlaxlen ja Entrerin kauniin suhteen kehittymisen. Jarlaxle antaa Entrerille lahjan. Se on Drizzt.
”Artemis Entreri entered the room then, as Jarlaxle had bade him. He took one look at the two dark elves, then moved cautiously to the side of the reflecting pool – and his eyes widened when he saw the image displayed within, the image of his greatest adversary.
”Why are you so surprised?” Jarlaxle asked. ”I told you I can deliver to you that which you most desire.”
Entreri worked hard to keep his breathing steady, not wanting the mercenary to draw too much enjoyment from his obvious excitement.
Lahja otetaan ilolla vastaan. Drizzt ei ole yhtä ilahtunut. Sananvaihdon jälkeen hyppäämme suoraan keskelle taistelua, mikä onkin hyvä, koska sitä riittää sivutolkulla. Varoitus: kauhea tekstiseinä seuraa. Taistelu kestää kolmasosan kirjasta, koska Jarlaxle on järjestänyt taistelijoille temppuradan.
They stared at each other for some time, looks of respect more than hatred, for they had come past hatred, these two, losing a good deal of their enmity by the sheer exertions of their running battle.
So now they stared from opposite sides of the thirty-foot diameter room, across the central stairs, each waiting for the other to make the first move, or rather, for the other to show that he was about to move.
They broke as one, both charging for the center stairs, both seeking the higher ground. Even without the aid of the magical bracers Drizzt gained a step advantage, perhaps because though he was twice the assassin’s actual age, he was much younger in terms of a drow lifetime than Entreri was for a human.
Always the improviser, Entreri took one step on the staircase, then dived to the side, headlong in a roll that brought him harmlessly past Drizzt’s swishing blades. He went right under the raised plank, using it as a barrier against the scimitars.
Drizzt turned completely around, falling into a ready crouch at the top of the stairs and preventing Entreri from coming back in.
But Entreri knew that the ranger would protect his highground position, and so the assassin never slowed, coming out of his roll back to his feet and running to the side of the room, up the five steps, then moving along that higher ground to the end of the raised plank. When Drizzt did not pursue, neither by following Entreri’s course nor rushing across the plank, Entreri hopped down to that narrow walkway and moved halfway along it toward the center stair.
Drizzt held his ground on the wider platform of the staircase apex.
”Come along,” Entreri bade him, indicating the walkway. ”Even footing.”
Parkouria oli vaikeaa toteuttaa litteällä nurmikolla, mutta teimme parhaamme. Mikä tämä higher ground -pakkomielle on? Kumpikin voisi vain pysytellä omalla puolellaan huonetta tai esimerkiksi tasaisella pinnalla ja kieltäytyä tekemästä Jarlaxlen masinoimia temppuja, mutta ei. Tähän käytetäänkin sitten paljon aikaa.
Drizzt wanted to hold the secure position, but Entreri showed patience now, and the ranger knew that if he did not go out, this fight that he desperately wanted to be done with could take a long, long time. He hopped onto the narrow walkway easily and came out toward Entreri slowly, inch by inch, setting each foot firmly before taking the next small step.
He snapped into sudden motion as he neared, a quick-step thrust of his right blade. Entreri’s dagger, his left-hand weapon, wove inside the thrust perfectly and pushed the scimitar out wide. In the same fluid movement the assassin turned his shoulder and moved ahead, sword tip leading.
Tähän asti pärjäsimme hyvin. Sitten Drizzt alkaa tanssia.
Drizzt’s second scimitar was halfway into the parry before the thrust ever began, turning a complete circle in the air, then ascending inside the angle of the thrust on the second pass, deflecting the rushing sword, rolling right over it and around as his first blade did the same with the dagger. Into the dance fully he went, his curving blades accentuating the spinning circular motions, cutting over and around, reversing the direction of one, then both, then one again. Spinning, seeking opening, thrusting ahead, slashing down.
And Entreri matched every movement, his actions in straighter lines, straight to the side or above or straight ahead, picking off the blades, forcing Drizzt to parry. The metal screamed continuously, hit after hit after hit.
But then Drizzt’s left hand came in cleanly and cleanly swished through the air, for the assassin did not try to parry but dived into a forward roll instead, his sword knocking one scimitar at bay, his movement causing the other to miss, and his dagger, leading the ascent out of the roll, aimed for Drizzt’s heart with no chance for the ranger to bring his remaining scimitar in to block.
Mitä. Tapahtuu. Drizztin torjunta aiheuttaa syvää hämmennystä. Ja tässä ollaan edelleen kapealla lankulla, joten Entrerin ukemi vaikuttaa vähintäänkin omituiselta.
So up went Drizzt, up and out, a great leap to the left side, tucking and turning to avoid the strike, landing on the floor in a roll that brought him back to his feet. He took two running steps away as he spun about, knowing that Entreri, slight advantage gained, would surely pursue. He came around just in time to meet a furious attack from dagger and sword.
Again the metal rang out repeatedly in protest, and Drizzt was forced back by the sheer momentum of Entreri’s charge. He accepted that retreat, though, quick-stepping all the way to maintain perfect balance, his hands working in a blur.
At the interior landing the three drow, who had lived all their lives around expert swordsmen and had witnessed many, many battles, watched every subtle movement with mounting amazement.
”Did you arrange this for Entreri’s benefit or ours?” Rai’gy remarked, his tone surely different, surely without hint of sarcasm.
”Both,” Jarlaxle admitted. As he spoke, Drizzt darted past Entreri up the center stairs and did not stop, but rather leaped off, turning in midair as he went, then landing in a rush back to the side toward the plank. Entreri took a shorter route instead of a direct pursuit, leaping up to the plank ahead of Drizzt, stealing the advantage the dark elf had hoped to achieve.
As much the improviser as his opponent, Drizzt dived down low, skittering under the plank even as Entreri got his footing, and slashing back up and over his head, an amazingly agile move that would have hamstrung the assassin had Entreri not anticipated just that and continued on his way, leaping off the plank back to the floor and turning around.
Still, Drizzt had scored a hit, tearing the back of Entreri’s trousers and a line across the back of his calf.
Totesimme, että nämä lankun yli ja ali -seikkailut aiheuttavat vain päänsärkyä. Sentään Entrerin housut repesivät.
Now they came in at floor level, rushing together in a blur of swords and flying capes, their routines neither attack nor defense, but somewhere in between. Blade scraped along blade, throwing sparks, the metal shrieking in protest.
Drizzt’s left blade swished across at neck level. Entreri dropped suddenly below it into a squat from which he seemed to gain momentum, coming back up with a double thrust of sword and dagger. But Drizzt didn’t stop his turn with the miss. The dark elf went right around, a complete circuit, coming back with a right-handed, backhand down-and-over parry. The inside hook of his curving blade caught both the assassin’s blades and turned them aside. Then Drizzt altered the angle of his left before it swished overhead, the blade screaming down for Entreri’s head.
But the assassin, his hands even closer together because of Drizzt’s block, switched blades easily, then extracted the dagger by bringing his right arm in suddenly, pumping it back out, dagger tip rising as scimitar descended.
Then they both howled in pain, Drizzt leaping back with a deep puncture in his wrist, Entreri falling back with a gash along the length of his forearm.
Ensimmäisessä kappaleessa rekonstruktio alkoi käydä vaikeaksi. Metalli on huutanut ja voihkinut jo jonkin aikaa. Tällaista tekstiä on oikeasti aika tylsää lukea. Epäilen vähän Entrerin aseiden vaihtoa kädestä toiseen, mutta okei. Tämä oli vielä jotakuinkin toistettavissa.
But only for a second, only for the time it took each to realize that he could continue, that he would not drop a weapon. Both Drizzt’s scimitars started out wide, closing like the jaws of a wolf as he and Entreri came together. The assassin, though his blades had the inside track, found himself a split second behind and had to double block, throwing his own blades, and the scimitars they caught, out wide and coming forward with the momentum. He hesitated just an instant to see if he could possibly bring one of his blades back in.
Drizzt hadn’t hesitated at all, though, dipping his forehead just ahead of Entreri’s similar movement, so that when they came smacking together, head to head, Entreri got the brunt of it.
But the assassin, dazed, punched out straight with his right hand, knuckles and dagger crosspiece slamming into Drizzt’s face.
They fell apart again, one of Entreri’s eyes fast swelling, Drizzt’s cheek and nose bleeding.
The assassin pressed the attack fiercely then, before his eye closed and gave Drizzt a huge advantage. He went in hard, stabbing his sword down low.
Drizzt’s scimitar crossed down over it, and he pivoted perfectly, launching a kick that got Entreri in the face.
Aika… omituinen susi, jos sen leuat sulkeutuvat sivusuunnassa. Tästä pikkuseikasta huolimatta taistelijoillamme alkoi olla hauskaa, koska kunnon tappelu näytti alkavan! Monen sivun jälkeen hahmojakin alkaa kiinnostaa.
The kick hardly slowed him, for the assassin had anticipated that exact move indeed, he had counted on it. He ducked as the foot came in, a grazing blow, but one that nonetheless stung his already injured eye. Skittering forward he launched his dagger in a roundabout manner, the edge coming in at the back of Drizzt’s knee.
Drizzt could have struck with his second blade, hoping to get it past the already engaged sword, but if he tried and Entreri somehow managed to parry, he knew that the fight would be all but over, that the dagger would tear the back out of his leg.
He knew all of that, instinctively, without thinking at all, so instead he just kicked his one supporting leg forward, falling backward over the dagger. Drizzt was scraped but not skewered. He meant to go all the way around in the roll and come right back up to his feet, but before he even really started he saw that the growling Entreri was fast pursuing and would catch him defenseless halfway around.
So he stopped and set himself on his back as the assassin came in.
On both sides of the room, dark elves and Drizzt’s friends alike gasped, thinking the contest at its end. But Drizzt fought on, scimitars whirling, smacking, and stabbing to somehow, impossibly, hold Entreri at bay. And then the ranger managed to tuck one foot under him and come up in a wild rush, fighting ferociously, hitting each of Entreri’s blades and hitting them hard, driving, driving to gain an equal footing.
Sitten Drizzt pudottautuu selälleen Entrerin tikarin yli. Tarkoituksella. Koska se on hyvä idea. Ja sitten huitelee sieltä käsin. Tuntui muuten aika tyhmältä tehdä. (Kyllä, minä olin Drizzt.)
Now they were in it, face to face, blades working too quickly for the onlookers to even discern individual moves, but rather to watch the general flow of the battle. A gash appeared here on one combatant, a gash appeared there on the other, but neither warrior found the opportunity to bring any cut to completion. They were superficial nicks, torn clothes and skin. It went on and on, up one side of the staircase and down the other, and any misgivings that Drizzt might have had about this fight had long flown, and any doubts Entreri had ever had about desiring to battle Drizzt Do’Urden again had been fully erased. They fought with passion and fury, their blades striking so rapidly that the ring came as constant.
They were out on the plank then, but they didn’t know it. They came down together, each knocking the other from his perch, on opposite sides, then went under the plank together, battling in a crouch. They moved past each other, coming up on either side, then leaping back atop the narrow walkway in perfect balance to begin anew.
On and on it went, and the seconds became minutes, and sweat mixed with blood and stung open wounds. One of Drizzt’s sleeves got sliced so badly that it interfered with his movements, and he had to launch an explosive flurry to drive Entreri back long enough so he could flip his blade in the air and pull the remnants of the sleeve from his arm, then catch his blade as it descended, just in time to react to the assassin’s charge. A moment later Entreri lost his cape as Drizzt’s scimitar came in for his throat, cutting the garment’s drawstring and tearing a gash under Entreri’s chin as it rose.
Both labored for breath; neither would back off.
No hyvä, sukkubuksien ei edes tarvinnut yrittää, kun kukaan ei enää ymmärrä, mitä tapahtuu! En kyllä ymmärrä sitäkään, miksi Drizztin pitää heittää sapelinsa ilmaan voidakseen repäistä irti revenneen hihan, mutta kyllähän hän oli jonglööraava ihmelapsi. Ja nyt kumpaakin kiinnostaa ihan tosissaan. Hyvä hyvä! Tämän kun olisi saanut tapahtumaan ensimmäisen parin sivun aikana.
But for all the nicks and blood, for all the sweat and bruises, one injury alone stood out, for Entreri’s vision on his right side was indeed blurring. The assassin switched weapon hands, dagger back in left and the longer, better blocking sword back in his right.
Drizzt understood. He launched a feint, a right, left, right combination that Entreri easily picked off, but the attacks had not been designed to score any definitive hit anyway, just to allow Drizzt to put his feet in line.
To the side of the room cunning Jarlaxle saw it and understood that the fight was about to end.
Now Drizzt came in again with a left, but he stepped into the blow and launched his scimitar from far out to the side, from a place where Entreri’s closed eye could hardly make out the movement. The assassin did instinctively parry with the sword and counter with the dagger, but Drizzt rolled his scimitar right over the intended parry, then snapped it back out, slashing Entreri’s wrist and launching the sword away. At the same time, the ranger dropped his blade from his right hand and caught Entreri’s stabbing dagger arm at the wrist. Stepping in and rolling his wrist and turning his weapon hand, Drizzt twisted Entreri’s dagger arm back under itself, holding it out wide while before the assassin’s free hand could hold Drizzt’s arm back the dark elf’s scimitar tip came in at Entreri’s throat.
All movement stopped suddenly. The assassin, with one arm twisted out wide and the other behind Drizzt’s scimitar arm, was helpless to stop the ranger’s momentum if Drizzt decided to plunge the blade through Entreri’s throat.
Growling and trembling, as close to the very edge of control as he had ever been, Drizzt held the blade back. ”So what have we proven?” he demanded, voice full of venom, his lavender orbs locked in a wicked stare with Entreri’s dark eyes. ”Because my head connected in a favorable place with yours, limiting your vision, I am the better fighter?”
”Finish it!” Entreri snarled back.
Drizzt, miksi heität pois miekkasi? Muuten tämä oli kohtalaisen ymmärrettävää.
Drizzt growled again and twisted Entreri’s dagger arm more, bending the assassin’s wrist so that the dagger fell to the floor. ”For all those you have killed, and all those you surely will, I should kill you,” Drizzt said, but he knew even as he said the words, and Entreri did, too, that he could not press home his blade, not now. In that awful moment Drizzt lamented not going through with the move in the first instant, before he had found the time to consider his actions.
But now he could not, so with a sudden explosion of motion he let go of Entreri’s arm and drove his open palm hard into the assassin’s face, disengaging them and knocking Entreri staggering backward.
”Damn you, Jarlaxle, have you had your pleasure?” Drizzt cried, turning about to see the mercenary and his companions, for Jarlaxle had opened the door.
Drizzt came forward determinedly, as if he meant to run right over Jarlaxle, but a noise behind him stopped him, for Entreri came on, yelling.
Yelling. The significance of that was lost on Drizzt in that moment as he spun about, right to left, his free right arm brushing out and across, lifting Entreri’s leading arm, which held again that awful dagger. And around came Drizzt’s left arm, scimitar leading, in a stab as Entreri crashed in, a stab that should have plunged the weapon into the assassin’s chest to its hilt.
The two came together and Drizzt’s eyes widened indeed, for somehow, somehow, Entreri’s very skin had repelled the blow.
But Artemis Entreri, his body tingling with the energy of the absorbed hit, with the psionics Kimmuriel had suddenly given back to him, surely understood, and in a purely reactive move, without any conscious thought – for if the tormented man had considered it he would have loosed the energy back into himself – Entreri reached out and clasped Drizzt’s chest and gave him back his blow with equal force.
His hand sank into Drizzt’s chest even as Drizzt, blood bubbling from the wound, fell to the ground.
”What have I done?” the assassin wailed, falling to his knees beside the drow. He turned an evil glare over Jarlaxle. ”What have you done?”
”I gave you your fight and showed you the truth,” Jarlaxle calmly replied. ”Of yourself and your skills. But I am not finished with you. I came to you for my own purposes, not your own. Having done this for you, I demand that you perform for me.”
”No! No!” the assassin cried, reaching down furiously to try to stem the spurting blood. ”Not like this!”
Jarlaxle nodded and smiled. ”I have never seen Drizzt Do’Urden’s equal,” he admitted, ”unless it is Artemis Entreri. Do you understand now why I chose that one.”
”He is drow in everything but skin color,” Rai’gy said with a laugh.
Jarlaxle tekee kaiken paremmaksi! Myönnän, että oli erittäin hauskaa vajota maahan dramaattisesti Entrerin käden lävistäessä rinnan. Jarlaxlen pitäisi ainakin olla tyytyväinen tähän esitykseen, tappelua tuli koko rahan edestä.
Äänettömän veitsen käsittämättömän pitkän parkourepisodin jälkeen emme jaksaneetkaan enää muuta. Salvatoren taistelukohtaukset muuttuvat sarjan edetessä yhä monimutkaisemmiksi ja käsittämättömämmiksi. Ei ehkä ole ihan ideaalia, että lukija joutuu larppaamaan koko tappelun ymmärtääkseen siitä mitään – ja siitäkin huolimatta tapahtumat saattavat jäädä pimeän peittoon.
Mutta sukkubuksilla oli hauskaa! Vastaavaa epäilyttävää pikniktoimintaa on varmasti luvassa jatkossakin. Koska drowit piknikillä nyt eivät voi olla mitään muuta kuin epäilyttäviä.