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Ronin's tale part 11. 
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Highborn
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Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2007 4:49 pm
Posts: 753
Location: castro valley, caslifornia
“Is that it?”

“I should be asking you that old man!”

“What disrespect for your elders! You should be slapped for that!”

“Well, its hard to do that with a couple of swords sticking out of your arms.”

“Looks who’s talking runt. You have pair of blades in your thin hide as well.”


“Lord Squeaker? Could you come up with any less of a threatening name? Maybe “Fluffy”, or “Ratso,” or for crying our loud, Royal Pain in the Ars would be much more menacing!”

“Hay, that’s my mothers Name!”

And so went the last fifteen of Ronin’s and Lord Squeaker’s duel. Having stabbed and now skewered each other with their blades. Too tired to move, the two simply stood their, blood seeping though their open wounds.

“Want you to take your swords out of my shoulders?”

‘If you take the gauntlet blades out of my arms.”

“Well, that would require me to move my arms, and it’s a little difficult with some scrap pieces of copper poking me!”

“Lazey runt.”

“At least I’m no coward, unlike you!”

“Why thank you.”

“That wasn’t a…” Ronin collapsed from the lack of blood and strength.

“TO a Skaven, it…is…” Squeaker fallowed suit.

With their leader unable to fight, the last two Skaven dropped their weapons and dragged their leader by the tail to safety. This wasn’t so much out of concern as an Elf, human, Dwarf, Ogre, or even Orc would do. No, this was simply do to the condition of their payment: Bring Squeaker back (weather he’s alive or not.)

The Dark elves rushed to their fallen general, but unlike the cowardly Skaven, this was more out of gratitude and concern for his safty then greed.

“Take me to Kell’Ella!” He ordered.”

“Sir, we must tend to your wounds first!”

“Tend to them, and then get me there. I want to see her!” His warriors obeyed his request, forming a makeshift stretcher from the cloaks of the Skaven and a pair of spears.


***


Elsewhere a sleeping beauty was being nudged by her dark steed. Finally the horse grabbing the sorceresses’ raven colored hair, lifting her up. That finally did the trick. Grabbing the reigns, she pulled her self up with what little strength she had left.

I need to teach you a better way of getting me up. Namely one that doesn’t involve hair pulling!” Said Seppacuna grabbing a tonic from her saddle bag. It was one of her special concoctions she learned from one of her teachers. It was rare, and expensive, but would heal her from the after effects of a miscast. Still alive, and still in the realm of mortals, and still in one piece, she would live to cast another day. “Lets go see go see what left of that Asur child.” She told the mount in a gentile tone.

Suddenly the horse got spooked and tried to get her rider to move.

“Whoa! What’s wrong girl?” The answer came in the form of a Master Assassin, leaping into the air. Its beady rat eyes showed no fear, only malice. As it’s poisoned knife came inches of her face, something happened. The Skaven assailant was thrown off into the distance. When it finally stopped, the spell caster could see a long wooden shaft impaling the creature to a nearby boulder. The creature inched its way along the spear, trying to finish his job before it succumbed to death. Stretching its paw, it tried to grab hold of the women mere inches from his fingertips.. With one final breath, it was dead.

The Elvin assassin, Sevril Rellik, limped next to the sorceress, still alive after his encounter with that Skaven. “I didn’t save you because I was ordered to. I did it because of Ronin. The idiot would miss you too much. SO do me a favor, and don’t tell anyone of this!”

“Not like I have much of a reputation at stake here, but it wouldn’t look good for me either if people found out about this. Speaking of Ronin, where is he?”

“Over yonder, cradling the fallen Kell’Ella.” Said a stranger’s voice. The two looked over to its general direction to find not one, but five cold one knights. Each one wore dark blue armor, and road on even cold one with an even darker shade of the collor. A baby dragon, roughly the size of a hawk, was perched on the leader’s outstretched arm. Overall, it was a the color of freshly spilt blood, and with a black tint on its belly.

“Who are you, and where did you come from?” demanded Sepacuna, preparing the Hand of Death Spell just in case.

“We are of house Callestial, of Hag Graef. We were assigned to Ronin’s command by the Witch King, Malekith himself, should the boy survive this ordeal. We were regionally part of the raiding force sent by the “Red Damsel of Daggers” herself,

“The Red Damsel of Dagger of Hag Graef? By Khaine, how did the conquest of the Dwarven strong hold go?”

“It was a wasted effort my dear, one we can discuss as we head towards the main encampment. We have the rest of the survivors there as well.” Said the Dread Knight, in a polite tenor tone of voice. One that the sorceress could tell wasn’t an act.

“Survivors?”

“Eight shades from your detachment, plus eleven of the twenty we sent to help deal with the Plague Monks. We also have accounted for four Harpies, five spearmen, half dozen crossbowmen that are being stitched up right now, and a reaper crew member who just had a concussion from a blow to her head.”

The Standard bearer kept a eye on the assassin. It wasn’t out of fear, but out of curiosity. Relatively young by Elf standards, he was now of the age where he could lead his own unit. But was young enough where he still collected the picture books and stories of the various heroes of his people (both real and legend.) His favorite was the Martyred assassin Poison Blade. “Yo, good sir. We managed to capture a mule back at that mine. We would be more then wiling to let you ride it, if you wish. I’d be the first to offer to get on one of our mounts, but you look a bit torn up. It is that or ride with the sorceress.”

Too weak to argue about the cold ones, too tired to walk back, and too proud to jump to the Sorceress’ dark steed, he chose the mule. “How wasted was the effort? He asked, pulling himself onto the animal. One of the other knights gently tugged at a rope around the beasts neck to get it moving.

The sorceress herself positioned herself as close to the commander without getting snapped at by his reptilian mount.

“All the dwarves, accepts the Lord of the stronghold, some elderly types that were too stubborn to abandon their ancestral home, and enough slayers to take on an army of trolls and win, abandoned the place. Other then what can be mined by the hands of slaves, they destroyed or took all of the voluble loot, and left. The slayers did a number on the Skaven attackers, but were eventually given their request of death by our hydras. The Damsel’s son has a soft spot for them.

“I see. And the Skaven? You said the slayers killed a good number of them, but surly there must be more of them.” Sepacuna inquired of them.

"They were beaten back to their sewers most likely. The ones we did captured were deemed useless or wouldn’t last long on the trek back to Narrgarroth, so we just let the Witch Elves have at them."

“I thought that required them to go into a temple?”

“And what better a place of worship for a Witch Elf, then the battlefield? Isn’t that right Assassin?” Asked the Dread Knight.

Rellik simply nodded in agreement. “And what of Ronin? What is his condition?”

***

A few moments prior to Sepacuna’s rescue, Ronin was given his request to be taken to the Crossbow women. There were a few survivors among the dead, which the spearmen took care off (either with the limited healing magic they were allowed to use, or bandaging their wounds.

“You look like hell.” Said Kell’Ella.

“Me? You should take a good long look at your self! I just got beaten senseless by a big green rat. How about you?

“They poked me with a rusty knife, then walked all over me.” She smiled. “Just 40 more years, and you would be old enough to be betrothed. Twenty more after that, and we could have been wed.”

“An Asure Beast, and a Druchii beauty. Not a bad mix. But you mean 'will' instead of could, right?” the boy teased.

“Hmmm, you know as much as I do that the wound they gave me was fatal. Even if it wasn’t…”

“Bad liar,’ remember? Besides, what would I do without you? There are some common warriors left can trust and possibly some Shades and harpies. As for the Assassin and Sorceress…its best left unsaid.”

This caused the Lordling to laugh, coughing up blood as she went. “True, *cough, cough* so very true.”

“Can you do me a favor?” asked her general.

“Anything.”

Allow me to look upon your face. I heard the rumors, but I don't care. You are of Nararithian blood: a noble heritage which you have gladly kept up. You are also the first person to acknowledge me as a person, and not a tool. For that, you will always be my beautiful one.”

It was a simple request, won she almost never would do. But for Ronin, the only person who could look past the stories of her disfiguration, she would gladly obey him. The rumors were true (at least half true.) Half her face was badly burned, weather by acid of some other device that could inflict some other grievous of a wound. In effect. The other reminded him of his mother: Elegant, simple, and fair. Her hair was cut short so that she could fit it in her helmet more easily, yet still womanly at the same time.

As the sun began to set, muffles footprints of a small detachment of cold ones casually galloped
by, bringing with them battle field medics and sorceresses trained in the art of healing as well as causing havoc upon the enemy. Ronin could tell one of them was trying to treat his wounds as he slipped n to unconsciousness. When his eyes opened again, he was under an olive tree near his farm house. At a distance, he could see his mother waiting for him, calling for him.


Sun Mar 16, 2008 2:36 am
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