The Mansion of Bones

Kenji began to chant. It might have been a passage from the Diamond Sutra; I was not pious enough to know one book of Buddhist scripture from another, but Kenji, despite his flaws, knew nearly all of them and could recite the appropriate passages at will. Which he was doing now. The shadow moved away from us toward the outbuilding as we stepped out onto the rear veranda, always keeping the structure to its back, or such I judged its back to be. It was hard to be certain with something so close to formless.

I know it was wrong of me to savor the look of fear on Kenji's face, but some temptations are not to be resisted.

And then some nights we’d cross the river. Cumberan soldiers would discover that someone had insinuated flux-weed into their pottage greens, and in the dark end up with handfuls of nettles with which to wipe. Baskets, lobbed into a bivouac as supper was served, broke apart, freeing swarms of hornets. Spores of certain fungi, introduced into casks of wine, sent soldiers shrieking and stumbling in panic through the woods. And the polecats....

He was everything the stories claimed, only smaller.
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Her words got me to thinking about my past. What there was to remember.