From the novel, “Hannibal’s Elephant Girl, Book Three”.
At sunrise Hannibal led his nine mounted soldiers from the ravine and entered a large area that had been cleared of trees and bush.
A slight breeze rustled the tall weeds, but otherwise all was quiet.
Near the center of the clearing, a piercing battle cry signaled a horde of fighters to leap from their hiding places in the grass and attack from all sides.
The ten Carthaginians drew their swords and spears, striking down on the attackers.
The Tartessians cruelly slashed the horses’ throats and bellies, slaughtering all ten and knocking the Carthaginians to the ground.
Hannibal and his men fought viciously with sword and shield, inflicting many wounds, but this was a very different battlefield from the practice arena where their comrades stood back to watch two combatants who had plenty of free space to turn, attack and swing their swords.
On this bloody field, being attacked from all sides by throngs of screaming barbarians, the ten men were soon overwhelmed and disarmed.
Their hands were bound behind their backs and with ropes around their necks, they were marched through the woods and along the foothills.
Before midday they came to a large village where they were greeted by the jeers and taunts of hundreds of women and children who threw insults along with rocks and sticks at their hated invaders.
Hannibal and his men were bound to posts and forced to watch the jubilant natives feast on the flesh of their horses.
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