Life sat at Earth’s Great Oaken Table, hands resting in Her lap as She waited for Her partner to arrive. The ivory chess pieces before Her whinnied and neighed, rustled and shouted. She smiled, watching the green, living board and all the creatures on it. Soon, a shadow darkened the other half of the board. Gothic ebony pawns, knights, rooks, and bishops materialized from thin air, followed by a King and his Queen.
“Let’s skip the pleasantries, shall we?” Death said. “We have a game to play.”
Life nodded, heart heavy, and hit the clock. Death rapped skeletal fingers against the table. Life sent a pawn forward, and thus began a timeless game.
In a matter of turns, dark knights reared, cutting through Her pawns, sieging Her rooks, beheading Her bishops, and savaging Her Queen. White pieces lay scattered beside the board. A pale lonely King was on his knees amidst a sea of blood. “I thought you’d be better at this by now.” Death remarked, taking him. “I always win, friend. Why we still compete, I never know.”
“Hope,” Life replied, eyes shining with tears.
Death smiled, realizing why he loved his dear foolish companion so. “You beautiful romantic.” He hit the clock.
In a stronghold, nuclear weapons were armed by another pawn. Then launched.
I wrote this piece for the 200-Word Tuesdays Magazine. I selected November’s theme of "Checkmate."
Thanks for reading!
Disclaimer: Picture of Peter Ganine Vintage "Gothic" Sculpted Tournament chess set is not mine.