Gender: Male Age: 53 Location: Las Vegas, Nv
|Introduction: Going home|
I glanced at Aveline as we walked out of the highlands and headed northwest. She had been quiet for several days as we recovered. I finally reached over to touch her shoulder, “talk to me.”
She didn’t smiled as she looked around and then at me, “I tire of killing.”
I nodded as I looked at the north plains awakening from their winter, “I am tired of fighting and always moving.”
She smiled and moved a little closer, “perhaps it is time to start a different campaign.”
I looked at her as she looked everywhere but at me. She was blushing and I finally understood and blushed too, “I am a man.”
She looked at me before smiling softly, “have you looked at yourself? You have touched all the elfstones and your spirit holds them still. You were born a man but you are an elf now.”
I thought about her words as we walked and perhaps she was right. Once across the plains we headed west. Aveline had once told me of an ancient city that had been here before the elves had come. It was mostly ruins and rubble beside the cold western sea. The closer to the ruins the more orcs we saw, there was also the feeling of someone watching us or following.
It was almost a month after leaving the highlands that we saw the edge of the ruins. Orcs were everywhere and as it became night there was a glow like we had seen in elvenhome. It took a long time to work our way around and into the ruins without being seen. We crawled along the top of a tall wall until we were looking out at a huge arch filled with a swirling gate.
Aveline hissed and nodded to one side and I stared. A huge black dragon lay on a large scattered pile of gold and orc bones. It was sleeping now and all the orcs walking from the gate and going past the dragon were trying to be very quiet. I kept looking at the arch and finally touched Aveline before moving back.
It seemed to take forever before we were out of the ruins and clear of the orcs. We were kneeling in a shallow gully and I looked at Aveline, “there is a crack in one of the arch pillars holding the gate.”
She snorted, “with all the orcs and that dragon we would never get close.”
I grinned, “the way that dragon sleeps I could put a spear through its ear to distract it.”
She grinned, “it would eat you.”
I turned at a chuckle and Elvandar slipped out of a bush, “or any and all the orcs that were close.”
Aveline shifted, “what are you doing here?”
He knelt beside us, “we were heading west and south when I saw you.”
I looked at him, “we?”
He smiled, “the other lost ones.”
I looked at Aveline, “lost ones?”
He put his hand on my shoulder, “the feel of the stones was enough to bring them back.”
Aveline smiled, “you should have gone to Green Heart.”
He shook his head, “we have a debt to pay.”
I looked at him for several moments, “I think the only ones that think that are you.”
He shrugged before gesturing, “what are you going to do?”
I looked at Aveline as I thought of both the gate and the dragon and sighed, “you go around and when you see the distraction move to the western arch pillar. Find something to break the crack and make it wider.”
I looked down as I thought, “I will slip around to the west and find a spear to use on the dragon.”
Elvandar cleared his throat, “and us?”
I looked from him to Aveline before smiling, “keep watch and attack any orcs trying to escape.”
I touched Aveline’s hand, “be careful. I don’t want to have to hunt you in another realm.”
She grinned and gave my hand a squeeze before turning to slip away. I watched her go before looking at Elvandar and then silently moving away. I had to dodge and move around through the ruins until I was to the west and between the dragon and a cliff. Below were rocks and the western ocean.
I looked over the edge carefully to see a narrow tiny ledge going to the north. I looked at the sleeping dragon and the pile of bones and gold before I saw one of the ancient long spears. It was in and under the bones and I crawled closer and slowly pulled it out as I kept looking towards the dragon’s head.
I checked it carefully before looking towards the gate as another large group of orcs came through. I waited until they began moving past the dragon on his other side and moved towards its head. The head was turned and I looked at the huge ear that was angled. I shifted my grip and changed my stance as I pulled the spear back.
Like in Farintine I thought of my magic and threw with everything I had. I staggered and went to my knees as the spear vanished in the huge ear. The dragon jerked and spasmed and began thrashing as its tail lashed out. I rolled towards the cliff and went over as I caught the edge. I hung and looked down and preyed I could stand.
I dropped the half pace onto the narrow ledge. I swayed but stayed on my feet before I began moving to the north. I could hear shouts and screams and I thought I heard the clashing of swords. That made me think of Aveline and start looking for a way to climb up. I finally managed to use a few rocks and climbed up to look over.
The dragon was still jerking a little but there was a battle between the orcs and the lost ones who were moving through them easily. I pulled myself up as I looked for Aveline and found her hitting the arch pillar with a large heavy battle axe. I grinned as I moved towards her quickly. She glanced at me and grinned, “dumb luck.”
I looked back at the dragon before looking at the crack in the stone arch. I took the axe and gestured her back. I swung it back and then brought it around to strike the stone as hard as I could. I heard a pop and looked at the stone as I shook my hand. I took another hard swing and there was another loud pop.
Suddenly orcs were coming out of the gate and I dropped the axe and pulled Reaper. We moved back as they were trying to look around and then they saw us and attacked. I stepped into the pattern and brought my sword around to cut through an orc from shoulder to hip. Aveline cut another in half as I whirled and lunged to bury a foot of the blade in a big orc’s chest.
I twisted and stepped as I ripped it free and spun. I brought the sword around and took the hands and arms of two orcs stabbing at me with short swords. I moved across in front of Aveline as she spun and sliced a orc following me from neck to crotch. I took the head of one orc and ripped the throat out of another.
The pattern shifted as something dark stepped through the gate. It was huge like a troll but black and had horns like the demon. It roared and ran towards us and we split apart. I lunged to shove my sword into an orc’s belly and grabbed the wrist of another one. I spun and shoved the wrist and sword towards the huge monster.
I moved back as the monster ignored the orc stumbling towards it and it screamed as the sword hit. The monster froze with a look of surprise when the sword vanished in its belly. I grinned as I lashed out and to the side to take the head of an orc. I pulled a spike and threw it and it vanished in the monster’s left eye.
It roared and began shaking as all the orcs around us dropped to the ground and tried to crawl away. I pulled another spike as Aveline threw one that struck the monster’s throat. I threw and mine slammed into the throat beside hers. The monster roared and took a step towards me as it brought a glowing black mace back.
It staggered a moment later and turned and I saw the spear in its back. I looked around and bent to grab another and shifted my sword before I pulled the spear back and threw. It slammed through the back of the neck and the monster fell forward and into the arch. There was a loud crack and then the monster began slipping around and was sucked through the gate.
There was another crack and then one more as the arch began to twist and lean. I started for Aveline and caught her before pulling her after me as I ran. There was a roar that seemed to fill the world and I glanced back to see the gate leaning back and swiveling. I pushed Aveline down and covered her with my body before there was a ripping sound and then an explosion.
Rocks ripped through the air and fire and heat rushed out and over us before debris began to fall. I looked back and pulled Aveline to her feet as I rose. She looked around at the dazed orcs and slashed out to take one’s head. That seemed to wake them up and they turned to flee. The lost ones were slowly standing as all the orcs ran away.
I looked around before looking at Aveline as I knelt to clean my sword, “so...”
She looked at me as she knelt to clean her sword, “So?”
I grinned, “we return to Blue Pass.”
She opened her mouth but I cut her off, “we may have to go to Crossing to get a wagon or wagons. After we load all our things we go to Green Heart.”
She looked at me and then at Elvandar as he approached, “we could go to Green Heart.”
I smiled as I stood and put Reaper away, “then we need to head further south in the Green Heart to the southern edge.”
She looked at me, “southern edge?”
I nodded as I moved towards the still dragon, “to find a place and build our home.”
She followed, “our home?”
I looked at the huge dragon, “then you can start your campaign.”
She bumped my shoulder, “my campaign?”
I grinned, “to start our own family of rangers.”
She laughed and slapped my arm. On the way back to Blue Pass we stopped to introduce Elvandar to those elves guarding the highlands. While the lost ones headed into the Green Heart we went east. It was a couple of months before we returned with three wagons. When we reached the center of Green Heart I had a sense of something waiting.
Gilbert and his wife had been happy to see us and we stayed with them. Aveline was pregnant and glowed as the elf stones pulled at me. I slipped out in the middle of the night and went to see the stones. When I stood in the center of the pedestals a shimmer appeared and I heard whispers in the wind that brushed my face.
I hesitated when a shape reached out and touched my face. The world became still and I felt strange as a peace came to me. A lady’s whisper seemed to reach me as if from a distance, “you are home now and with your own people.”
Decades have passed and Aveline and I have many children, some who will one day return to the north to become rangers.
Read 3 times | Rated 0 (0 votes)
Vote list (Close) :
Please rate this text:
:: Comments have been disabled on this story ::