Flash Fiction – 3

by juliusmsanz

So here comes the third part of this installment, and I hope you’ve been enjoying it. This story is played out in a rather simple fashion, and despite not being anything spectacular, it was the most fun when I was reading it to the mic, very enjoyable. I had a title for it, but I don’t think too much of it so this title is going to be completely random.

 

The Smooth Chaser

He got people to call him Nick, but that wasn’t his name. He went by many names and played several characters of various reputations. That day his reputation grew more than he had bargained for. The old lord of the Chesterfield Manor had passed away a couple of days before he read the paper, big news in many regional newspapers, and nobody would come to collect his inheritance. The news served not only to inform about the death, but also to try and find any distant inheritor, so far without any luck.

Nobody knew him in that village so he took on the name and not a soul suspected anything. Who would even consider claiming he was not the lord’s long lost son of a maid who had been dead over twenty years? Nick’s story would grow larger and more elaborate as the villagers, with their questions, fed more and more information that he could have possibly wished for. Those were two of Nick’s best talents: getting information and telling stories.

After a couple of hours, Nick was indeed the lost son and he had indeed every right to claim the inheritance he deserved. Not even concrete documents were asked, much to Nick’s delight. Maybe he would make a small fortune with the estate, maybe he would just take what he thought to be valuable and run away before the truth came forth. This infinite amount of possibilities excited Nick, who liked to gamble and take big risks. When he had read in the newspaper that the old lord had died without any successor he didn’t even bother to read anything else. That prize was his for the taking and he had to be fast enough to claim it.

None of that came across his mind as the dogs started to chase him down.

Four ferocious beasts, the biggest dogs he had ever seen in his entire life, had been chasing him for over an hour after he took the first steps outside the large manor; he didn’t even have the chance to look inside properly. You see, a call had been made to request the presence of the new lord, something about rents and payments; something that had to do with money, Nick thought. Dodging a bite just barely he would sprint towards one of the main streets but found all the stores closed. He only had the time to make a split-second decision of turning left towards another main street, or go right and try to escape the dogs through a series of smaller streets. He chose the right path and continued to run as fast as his legs allowed; looking everywhere around him in order to catch the glimpse of a peasant who could help.

It didn’t take long for the hounds to trap him in a narrow alley and to stand firm and menacing, awaiting their master. At this point Nick was surprised as he expected one individual and an apology. Over forty people stood in front of him demanding explanations, and money to be returned to them. They had welcomed him dearly as they expected money, but looked poorly at him when he said he had no such thing. He had failed to read their expressions earlier. Nick tried to tell them the truth, but all that fanfare had set him clear as the old lord’s son, the evil and conniving old lord who had been exploiting the rest of the village and ruining people’s lives. It had taken them quite some time to kill him, and they had been waiting for the manor to become part of the village’s communal property, to see some of their money back.

Nick’s screams did not stop the villagers from killing him and burying him in the graveyard, along with the couple of other fools that dared saying they were also bastard offspring of the lord. Maybe Nick should have paid closer attention to the rest of the newspaper, the part that mentioned the mysterious circumstances surrounding the old lord’s death. Now all that they had to do was wait; wait to claim what was theirs all along.

Let me know what you think of it, see you all again tomorrow!

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