The day of his death was a bright and sunny one. Cloudless and warm, it was a picturesque summer day. It was a shame, then, that he was going to meet Death, soon. In his cell, Garrick stared at the single small window through which he could see the sky. The occasional sight of passing birds served as a grim reminder of his lack of freedom. Not that it would matter for much longer, he would be free forever once the axe came down on him. The sound of footsteps drew his attention to the bars at the front of his cell.
“Is it time, already?” Garrick asked, the guard frowning.
“If you knew what waited for your damned soul, you wouldn’t be so quick to crack jokes,” the guard replied, unlocking the door. “Move it along, now.”
Garrick stood, approaching the door and stepping out into the hallway. Sandwiched between two other guards, the third closed the cell door before leading the small procession along. The halls of the prison were mostly silent, with the occasional inmate spitting at him, or calling him such things as “Damned heretic” and “Lilith’s concubine”. Garrick let the insults be, he knew he didn’t pick wrong when he decided to study magic. His only regret was breaking his promise to Lucan.
The crowd outside went wild the moment he stepped out into the courtyard.
“Burn in hell!”
An egg was the first thing to be thrown at him, as he was led up the steps to the execution platform. The shell cracked against the side of his head, yellow yolk running down his cheek. It was followed by more eggs, tomatoes, and even a few rocks. The pelting only ceased by motion from a guard, the crowd quieting somewhat.
“Garrick Kenton, you have been found guilty of the crimes of heresy, practicing black magic, and conspiracy to commit murder. For your crimes, you are sentenced to death.”
Garrick stood expressionless as the guard read out his crimes and sentence. He only half listened, his eyes searching the crowd for the face he knew was there. When his eyes caught the green ones of his young student, Garrick’s gaze lingered for several moments. Unblinking, he stared at the boy, silently apologizing.
I’m sorry. I can’t protect you anymore.
“Any final words?”
Garrick turned away from Lucan, to glare at the guard. Taking the opportunity, he opened his mouth and spit in the man’s face, earning a punch in his gut in return. His arms were seized, and he was maneuvered to kneel before a flat topped stone, set high enough to cradle his neck.
Closing his eyes, he waited for the blow that was sure to come.