Logen v Finnius

The scene below is taken from Joe Abercrombie’s novel, “Before They Are Hanged”. It is a scene involving Logen Ninefingers and Finnius. The original text can be found mid-way through the chapter called “Among The Stones”

    He came on fast and hard, the shield up in front of him, herding Logen through the stones, jabbing and chopping quick with the sword, Logen stumbled back, short of breath, looking for an opening but not finding one.
    The shield barged into his chest and knocked his breath out, pressed him back. He tried to dodge away but he lurched on his weak leg, and the short sword darted out and caught him across the arm. “Gah!” squawked Logen, staggering against a stone, drops of blood pattering from the cut into the grass.
    “One to me!” chuckled Finnius, dancing sideways and waving his sword around.
    Logen stood and watched him, breathing hard. The shield was a big one and this smiling bastard used it well. Gave him quite the advantage. He was quick, no doubt. Quicker than Logen, now, with a bad leg, a cut arm, and a thick head from a punch in the mouth.
    He edged back, stooping more and panting harder than he heeded to, letting his arm dangle as if it was useless, blood dripping from his limp fingers, blinking and wincing. He edged back past the stones to a space with more room. A nice wide space, where he could get a decent swing. Finnius followed him, his shield held up in front. “That it?” he grinned as he came on. “Already fading, eh? I can’t say I’m not disappointed, I was hoping for a-”
    Logen roared, springing suddenly forward and lifting the Maker’s sword above his head in both hands. Finnius srcambled back, but not quite far enough. The grey blade tore a chunk from the corner of his shield, sliced clean through and chopped deep into the side of one of the stones with a mighty clang, sending chips of rock spinning. The impact nearly tore the sword from Logen’s hands, sent him flailing sideways.
    Finnius groaned. Blood was running from a cut on his shoulder, a cut right through his leather armour and into the flesh. The tip of the sword must have gashed him as it passed. Not deep enough to kill, unfortunately, but deep enough to make the point alright.
    It was Logen’s turn to grin. “That it?”
    They moved at the same moment. The two blades clanged together, but Logen’s grip was the stronger. Finnius’ sword twittered as it spun from his hand and away down the hillside. He gasped, snatching at his belt for a dagger, but before he could get there Logen was on him, growling and grunting as he chopped mindlessly away at the shield, hacking great scars in the wood and sending splinters flying, driving Finnius stumbling away. One last blow crashed into the shield and he staggered from the force of it, tripped over the corner of a fallen stone poking through the grass and tumbled on his back. Logen gritted his teeth and swung the Maker’s sword down.
    It sliced clean through the greave on Finnius’ shin and took his foot off just above the ankle, splattering blood into the grass. He dragged himself backwards and started to scramble up, shrieked as he tried to put weight on his missing foot, dropped onto the stump and sprawled on his back again, coughing and groaning.


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