Gruntlug’s teeth were twisted, like rope wound together into a tight, tight weave – twisted, sharp, and yellow. His breath was foul like the stench of death and rot, but his eyes – they seemed kind. There possessed no anger, no malice. Strangely, I knew this troll did not mean to harm me, At least, he did not mean to harm me now.
“I apologize, if I bound you too tightly, child of man,” said Gruntlug. “But I needed you bound and so you will stay until my needs are no longer.”
Still dazed, my head aching from whatever spell the troll placed on me, I asked, “Does your need including making a meal from my bones.”
The troll laughed a deep, deep laugh. “I do not eat bones, child of man; they do not taste good. Like you, I eat flesh, but not the flesh of men. Man flesh is sour, like his soul. Much like you, I prefer the taste of deer, elk, and boar. And, as you regain your senses, you’ll see, and perhaps smell, I am roasting a fine venison now and I do hope that you will sup with me.”
“But I am bound, your prisoner. Prisoners do not sup with their jailers.”
“Then, maybe if I cut you free, child of man, you can be my guest. Would you eat with me then?”
Gruntlug unsheathed his knife, a long, curving blade that in my hands would look like a sword. He stepped toward me, smiling again. In a moment, I thought, I’ll either be free…or dead.
Part III will be posted (and written) soon.
Part one of this story can be read here – https://inkhammer.wordpress.com/2013/12/08/the-wisdom-of-trolls/