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The spear hit Diego Alvarado in the chest. A jarring blow that knocked him to the ground but failed to puncture the strong Castilian armor he’d carried all the way from Spain.
He rolled, took a position on one knee and leveled his crossbow. Spotting movement in the trees, he let the bolt fly. It sliced into the foliage, drawing an anguished scream.
“In the trees to the right!” he yelled to his men.
A cloud of blue smoke exploded over the narrow trail as several large-bored muskets, known as harquebuses, fired simultaneously. The shots tore into the forest, severing small tree limbs and ripping through the lush green leaves.
A wave of arrows flew back at them in response. Two of Alvarado’s men went down and he felt a spike of pain in his calf as an obsidian-tipped dart punctured it.Continue Reading