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Borrowed Knowledge
April 21, 2021|Short Story

Borrowed Knowledge

Borrowed Knowledge

The constant clanking of the wagon wheels as they passed over the rails kept him awake, the dinging was impossible to ignore. Time seemed to slow down slightly, as if the train traveled between dimensions.

Although Nathan Astaros didn’t seem to mind the noise, as he studied the symbols on a scroll. It was then that the vivid image of the fire raging through Alexandria’s library flashed through his mind.

So much knowledge that we’ll never get back, Nathan thought, carefully tucking the clear plastic-covered parchment into a folder. All the secrets of a civilization lost forever. Could it be that we’ll face the same destiny?

On his last trip to Egypt he noticed how mysterious the inside of the pyramids is. There is so much we choose to ignore.

Suddenly, a change in the constant clanking of the rails caught his attention. Nathan looked out the window but found nothing out of place, his psychosis for the value of his scrolls awoke. I better get out of here.

Nathan placed the folder in his briefcase and headed for the next car. However, in front of his eyes and a few steps away a cloud of black smoke began to form. Nathan took a step back, not knowing what was happening. From the portal appeared two slender creatures with oversized heads and fanged mouths.

There was no time to wait and see what would happen. Somehow Nathan knew exactly what he had to do, pulling out one of the scrolls and reading it aloud.

The creatures took a while to regain balance after their appearance, long enough for Nathan to finish casting the spell. One of the demons prepared to attack.

Nathan was surprised to see a light unfold from within him, slightly pushing everyone around, blinding the creatures for an instant. When Nathan managed to see what was happening he noticed that his outfit had changed, now he was wearing silver armor, the scrolls and the briefcase were transformed into a book that hung from his waist by a chain, and in his hand he noticed a sword.

The creatures looked at him and fear could be seen on their faces. Immediately, they turned and run, fleeing.

Nathan froze, trying to understand what was happening. When a new portal of black smoke opened at the other end of the car. People began to run when they saw the new creature appear, it was very different from the previous ones, its large and sturdy body, with horns on its head.

The messages came clear after reading the scroll, although this was the first time Nathan had experienced the science of a lost civilization. He grabbed the sword’s hilt with both hands and turned to face the creature.

“Let’s not make this any more difficult than it has to be,” the demon said to Nathan’s surprise. “Give me the book and no one will get hurt.”

The demon looked too calm for the situation. Nathan wasn’t about to give up so easily. “Over my dead body.”

“It will be a pleasure.”

Nathan felt safe… different from his normal state. Even holding the hilt of the sword in his hands was something he seemed to be used to, although it was the first time he had felt this power.

The creature approached slowly, its gaze fixed on the man in silver armor.

“Not one more step…” Nathan said.

“Do you think this is a game?” the beast asked as it stopped. “Are you scared?”

Nathan didn’t know what he was doing, but he plucked up his courage and attacked, swinging his sword against the creature.

The demon grabbed the blade with one hand. “You are not a worthy rival.”

“What do you want from me?” Nathan asked, trying to retrieve the sword from the demon’s grasp.

“Should I repeat myself?” The creature pulled the sword and struck Nathan with its shoulder. Throwing the man down the corridor of the carriage.

Nathan noticed that the blow didn’t hurt him and he got up. To his surprise the sword was in his hand again.

“Don’t make this any more difficult than it needs to be,” the creature said, slowly approaching.

Nathan cleared his mind, concentrating on what was happening; letting go. He took the sword with two hands and charged.

The demon was shocked and leapt backwards to evade the attack. But Nathan continued, approaching the creature with every step. The beast had to jump to the side and managed to continue evading the attacks. Nathan noticed his sword lighting up in a different way, as if it radiated.

The expression in the demon’s face changed, concentrating to avoid being struck by a swing of the sword. “You learn fast.”

Nathan felt sure of himself, noticing his movements getting him closer and closer to his target. But in that instant he was unable to see the creature approach and couldn’t avoid getting caught by a wrist. Then he felt a claw around his neck.

“You never had a chance,” said the demon, tearing the book hanging from the belt. He then threw Nathan against the side of the wagon.

Nathan tried to get up, noticing that his armor had disappeared.

“Knowledge is our domain,” said the demon holding the book with his hand. Then a black fire began to consume the pages until it was destroyed and ashes fell to the ground.

Nathan watched the creature vanish.


Sebastian Iturralde

Fiction blogger—citizen of this beautiful planet, eternal lover of artistic creation and literature. Certain that the creative energy comes from nature.


  • April 21, 2021 at 11:20 am


  • April 21, 2021 at 11:25 am


  • April 21, 2021 at 8:17 pm

    Wisdom, knowledge, and understanding manifesting from a unique story
    in history of struggle, process, and success!

  • April 21, 2021 at 8:19 pm

    A story where unique bringed the gap between creativity and innovation toreah more than 1 goal!

  • April 22, 2021 at 4:36 am

    Great information.I can quickly refer to it and show others. Also, glad to know that we
    are doing some of this stuff on our own blog https://bit.ly/3en4u0X

  • April 22, 2021 at 4:43 pm

    I was instantly sucked into this story. I couldn’t move my eyes from the screen until I’d read the last word. Well done, Author, well done!

  • April 23, 2021 at 2:05 am

    Lovely writing. 💛😘🔥🙌🏿🙌🏼🙌🏾🙌🏽

  • April 24, 2021 at 3:39 pm

    Absolutely loved it.

  • April 24, 2021 at 6:56 pm

    Lovely 💕😘

  • April 26, 2021 at 7:16 am

    Great, lovely play on the words “knowledge is power”

  • April 26, 2021 at 7:29 am

    Halo, I saw your like on my site so I visted and you are a nice Human…. Wait let me read the blog and give it a like .

  • April 26, 2021 at 7:32 am

    That was intense! Muy buena!

    • April 26, 2021 at 10:01 am

      “Woman is the Moral Fiber of Civlization.” _-Van Prince

    • April 26, 2021 at 4:07 pm

      I remember looking out of the wagon’s window and staring into a universe filled with adventures.

  • April 26, 2021 at 7:36 am

    This was a marvelous post and I gave you the 160th like

  • April 26, 2021 at 1:20 pm


  • April 27, 2021 at 7:18 pm

    No, You actually liked my most recent post. Are you anywhere around Asheville? I think it’s going to be a good time in Sylva on May 28th!

  • April 27, 2021 at 11:00 pm

    This is so amazing and was very fun to read .

    • April 29, 2021 at 9:48 am

      I’ll try to keep them coming. You deserve to have fun while reading.

  • April 28, 2021 at 12:00 am

    Wow, what a story. Suspenseful like he savage tug of war between good and evil.

    • April 29, 2021 at 9:49 am

      I’m happy to know you enjoyed it. I’ll try to come up with more.

  • April 28, 2021 at 8:14 am

    Fun story, loved the ending I didn’t see coming and how “knowledge” ties in.

    • April 29, 2021 at 9:56 am

      I’m glad you enjoyed it. Lets see if I can come up with more.

  • April 28, 2021 at 11:17 am

    Love old trains! glancing at your post, your favorite color must be black1 Thanks for linking my posts!

    • April 29, 2021 at 9:57 am

      Old trains are amazing. Actually, my favorite color is not black but light-on-dark is better for the eyes of my readers.

  • Dew
    April 29, 2021 at 2:10 am

    I think I just saw a movie running in my head whilst reading this. Am glad to stumbling into you. thank you for visiting my blog. If not, I would have not found you 🙂

    • April 29, 2021 at 10:07 am

      It’s a great coincidence; it also makes me happy.

    • Dew
      April 29, 2021 at 10:57 pm

      glad that it makes you also happy. we need that a lot these days.

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    Author's Message
    This short story has been carefully crafted with inspiration I got from the Andes' highlands.
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    Welcome to RelatoCorto

    Sebastian's Blog Fiction

    Here you'll find all the author's creations in English and Spanish. Also his weekly stories in different genres: action and adventure, fantasy, romancescience fiction and thriller. Enjoy your visit and let your imagination run wild.

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