“Nothing escapes this mace,” was the first thing he got when he questioned a local boy who’d survived an attack by the bandit. Nenshe couldn’t recall the boy’s name after speaking to him, but he remembered the large dent in the boy’s head, his red eye, swollen with blood, his complaints of illness and pain, and his fits that alternated between anger and terror.
It took several hours for Nenshe to coax any useful information out of the boy, whom he’d deemed to be too young for … something. He wasn’t sure what the boy was “too young” for, it was something intangible, a thought beyond him. The boy was simply too young for something. Nenshe had known younger shepherds, so it couldn’t have been that. He’d known victims of bandits far younger, it wasn’t that the boy was too young to die — and based on the fits Nenshe assumed the boy wouldn’t live much longer.
Nenshe learned the bandits worked a broad but well-defined territory. His pursuit of Bexcol took him to several villages, all of which had heard the bandit’s utterance and knew to fear him. “I’ll have to meet this mace,” Nenshe muttered to himself. “If its reputation says anything about it, I could learn a few things.”