Chapter 47:

Chapter 47 Mending Broken Bodies

Hermit's Diary

After mending our broken bodies as best as he could, Kaka laid us on the ground in a collective heap and covered us with decaying leaves, a feeble attempt to shield us from further harm in the unforgiving environment.

"Huddle close, little ones. Kaka tries to keep you safe. Guards will leave us be for today but we stay quiet, like leaves."

With the hatchlings somewhat settled, Kaka turned his attention to his injuries. One dislocated hip remained, a painful reminder of the brutal assault by Slasher and his cohorts.

As he assessed his injuries, Kaka grumbled, "Ugh... big pain in the wiggly bits. Bad Slasher and his friends did this. No good, no good at all. Goblin smash, goblin hurt, but Kaka fixy hip, yes, yes!"

Kaka seized a stick that lay nearby, remnants of the guard's cruel game, and clenched it between his teeth. The foul taste of the feces-smeared stick mingled with the stench of his shit. Gripping his injured leg, Kaka began a brutal process of twisting and turning, each movement accompanied by guttural screams of pain.

The tent echoed with the horrifying sounds of agony as Kaka fought to realign his dislocated hip. With a final, grotesque squelch, the joint snapped back into place, and Kaka collapsed onto the ground. Spitting the vile stick from his mouth, he heaved heavy breaths, his body drenched in sweat and dirt.

After spitting out the dirty stick he had clamped between his teeth, Kaka gurgled, "Reeeeeeeee! Ouchie! Hurty wrigly bit! No like pain! Cold dirt eases pain! Pain makes Kaka go ouchie! Grrroooop! Mmmmph! Stink dirt... but less ouchie-ouch! Need nappy-nap now..."

He gingerly touched his messy hip, his fingers probing the sore area as if expecting it to magically fix itself. He scooped a handful of moist dirt and smeared it on his hip. The gory squelching sound of the joint popping back into place echoed in his mind, and he winced, muttering, "Snap-snap, Kaka fix! Hurt like a pig-wolf nibbling on my toes, it did! Now need rest! To save strength for the next day. Nap time it is."

But before Kaka succumbed to the weariness, his gaze fell upon the bloody smear on his tent wall, revealing the fallen hatchling who had borne the impact of the wooden club. Kaka's eyes widened with a mix of horror and concern, propelling him to crawl urgently toward the injured hatchling.

"Oh no! Tiny gobbie hurt bad! Wreeeeeeee! What happened, little one? Wreeeeeeee!" Kaka's voice trembled with fear as he reached the fallen hatchling.

Despite the brutal injuries, the tiny goblin was miraculously alive, his labored breaths revealing the weight of his suffering, tiny bones protruding from his fragile frame.

The injured hatchling, eyes glazed with pain, weakly mumbled, "Reeeeeee! Big... pain, Kaka. Big... ouchies. Wreeeeeeee!" His words were a mixture of muffled high-pitched whines and distressed chirps.

Kaka cradled the wounded hatchling in his arms, gently examining the extent of the injuries babbling in a worried tone, "Bad, bad hurt! Kaka helps! Tiny gobbie needs fixing!" He gently poked at the protruding bones, his shit-smeared fingers delicately tracing the sharp edges of broken bones that pierced through torn flesh, attempting to realign the fractures in a futile effort to alleviate the pain.

Kaka whispered soothing words of comfort and reassurance in a voice strained with emotion, "Shh, little one. You're going to be okay. You're stronger than you think, little one. You will get through this. Just hold on, and remember, you're not alone. Kaka is here, Kaka will fix you."

Kaka defeated and heartbroken, gently laid the mangled hatchling on the softened ground. The tiny goblin's body, a canvas of bruises and protruding bones, told a tale of unrelenting cruelty. Kaka's big, scarred ears drooped in sorrow as he watched the extent of the injuries.

"I did all I could but too much ouchies. Kaka sorry. Sorry, my little one." Kaka's mournful whimpers echoed through the tent, lamenting the hatchling's suffering.

In a last desperate attempt to provide comfort, Kaka carefully covered the injured hatchling with a few big leaves, creating a makeshift shield against the cold, and with a heavy heart, whispered, "I hope you survive, little one. Kaka hopes you make it at least till morning."

He gazed at the tiny goblin, now lying still beneath the makeshift leaf cover. He murmured, his voice choked with emotion, "Little gobbie, sleep now. Maybe morning brings healing. I will be here, by your side."

The hatchling, barely clinging to life, let out a weak, raspy response, "K-Kaka... hurts... hurts inside." Labored breaths punctuated each word, and the pain was evident in the tiny goblin's voice. His eyes, once vibrant with life, now held a dull glaze.

Kaka tried to soothe the hatchling with panic flickering in his bloodshot eyes, "No, little one, no more hurts. Kaka here. Stupid Kaka will make it better."

 Kaka's trembling hands gently brushed over the hatchling's small form, seeking to provide comfort in their cruel reality. The hatchling, gasping for air, managed a faint smile.

"Kaka... good goblin. Hurt... not your fault. Guards... bad."

Tears welled up in Kaka's eyes as he whispered, "Little one... Kaka is not good enough. Should've been protected. Should've stopped."

With a final, agonized breath, the hatchling's frail voice barely managed to whisper, "K-Kaka... my... friend..." A haunting echo of the bond that had been shattered by cruelty and despair.

The hatchling's body lay twisted and broken, his limbs contorted at unnatural angles, the delicate skin marred by gruesome bruises and cuts. Blood seeped from gaping wounds, staining the ground beneath the tiny goblin's mangled form. Every breath seemed to be a struggle, the hatchling's chest heaving with the effort of clinging to life in the face of overwhelming agony. His eyes, once bright with innocence and hope, now stared blankly into the void, robbed of the light that had once filled them. The soft features of his face were distorted by pain.

The hatchling's eyes fluttered, struggling to stay open, and then, in heartbreaking silence, the tiny goblin's fragile body went still, leaving Kaka to cradle the lifeless form of his mangled tiny hatchling.

With a sorrowful expression, Kaka circled the injured hatchlings. He covered them with his protective body, creating a tight, warm pile of comfort against the harsh chill of the night. Using his scarred big ears as makeshift blankets, he wrapped himself and us in a cocoon of warmth, providing the best comfort he could manage within the night's cold embrace.

Kaka's shoulders heaved with sobs, his pain mirrored in the anguished expressions of the remaining hatchlings.

With a shaky voice, Kaka muttered, "Stupid Kaka... couldn't save the little ones. Guards... too cruel. Not fair, not fair at all. Why do us so? Why?" His eyes darted between the lifeless hatchling and the others in the tent, their tiny faces contorted with a mixture of fear and sorrow.

One of the hatchlings, a timid and scrawny hatchling, crawled forward and touched Kaka's arm.

"Kaka," he spoke softly, "not stupid. Guards... bad. Bad guards are stupid. We, gobbies, sad together." The other hatchlings nodded in agreement, their collective grief creating an unspoken bond among them.

Kaka, still cradling the fallen hatchling, nodded appreciatively at little gobbies attempt to console him.

"Little ones... good goblins. We, gobbies, sad together. But Kaka... should've done more."

As the tent became a sanctuary of shared sorrow, the hatchlings sought solace in each other's company, bound by the pain inflicted upon them by the cruel guards. In that dimly lit tent, surrounded by the stench of filth and despair, the goblin hatchlings clung to the fragile threads of friendship, a flicker of resilience in the face of unspeakable cruelty.

The night stretched on endlessly, a harrowing symphony of pain, hunger, and the haunting echoes of the guards' malevolent laughter. Every passing moment felt like an eternity, the air thick with the acrid scent of fear and desperation. The cold seeped into our frail bodies, gnawing at our bones and numbing our senses.

 The shabby tent provided little refuge from the biting chill and the relentless torment of our thoughts. The guards' laughter, callous and cruel, seeped through the thin fabric of the tent, a reminder that our tormentors found joy in our misery. Each laugh was a dagger to our tiny hearts, plunging us further into the abyss of despair.

As the first feeble rays of dawn began to pierce the darkness, our weary eyes fluttered open. The pale light brought little relief; instead, it illuminated the gaunt faces of goblin hatchlings, their eyes hollow and haunted by the horrors of the night. The tent, a refuge from the torment of the night, held the strong scent of suffering. But within the lingering despair, a glimmer of hope flickered in the tent as the once seemingly lifeless hatchling gasped for air, a feeble heartbeat pulsating through his tiny frame.

Kaka, still cradling the injured hatchling, gazed upon the resilient little goblin with a mix of surprise and joy. The hatchling, though crushed and broken, clung tenaciously to life. Kaka's bulbous nose twitched with excitement as he whispered to us, "Little gobbies, look! Little one still breathing, still alive! Look! The little one still breathes. Goblin is strong! We make him better. I teach you, the balm of the goblin slave medicine. Passed down, like a secret, from one to another."

Kaka, despite his battered state, started rummaging through the pile of discarded trinkets and rubbish in the corner of the tent. With a depressed look on his face, he selected a few leaves and twigs that resembled the specific herbs he needed.

 A silent murmur escaped his lips, "All that is left... this is not enough." He then turned to the hatchlings.

"See, this leaf, and this root," Kaka explained, holding them up for the hatchlings to see, "We grind together, pour a drop of water, and make a paste. Goblin medicine! Heals wounds and lessens pain. Old goblin taught Kaka, now Kaka teaches you. Remember how they look and smell, this will help you greatly in times of pain."

The hatchlings, still worn and tired, gathered around Kaka, their eyes wide with curiosity and anticipation. Kaka began the process of grinding the herbs, the makeshift mortar and pestle made out of worn-down rocks in his hands, a testament to goblin ingenuity. The scent of crushed herbs filled the air, a sharp smell of the healing medicine they hoped to make.