Chapter XVIII - The Cove Rebellion

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Senlui
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Chapter XVIII - The Cove Rebellion

Post#1 » Sat Mar 24, 2018 7:11 pm

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A general feeling of unease had weighed upon the Regiment as they regained their strength from the events of the previous days. The wounded had been patched up, and the exhausted Druchii had spent a few precious days resting within the jagged iron walls of the garrison hidden in the riven gullies of the Shadowlands. Sunlight seldom broke through the gloom of the thick mist that cloaked these lands, lending an unusual gloom that matched the mood of this land.

Speculations had been whispered around the Commander’s well-being. Had he recovered unchanged from his possession? Or had the Chaos spirit that had used him as a host tainted, or changed him. Whilst relieved to see him restored, wary glances and accusations had been thrown; for back home one who had been polluted so would not be suffered to live. This certainly was not something that should reach the Witch King’s ears.

Eager to restore authority over his charges, Caranordor dressed himself for battle and stepped out of the command tent as a chill dawn greeted the garrison. Breath misting, huddled around the campfires, the Druchii took their cue at his appearance, gathering themselves, expecting and restless, eager to move on.

Ithilsyn had said little to anyone during this time. A black mood lingered upon her, raw as the wounds that were slowly healing about her wrists and ankles. Vithari placed her recovered staff at her feet, and passed her the confiscated items that had been taken from her during her arrest. Placing her spellcrown on her brow, she narrowed her eyes and stepped out to join the others, Aegnyr keeping a careful eye on her. Despite her retainer’s best advice, she would not allow herself to be seen as weak.

Catching Caranordor’s eye, the two Druchii looked at each other for a moment, much still unsaid. It was hard to gauge the possible implications of recent events, yet it was certain that change was on the air. The Regiment could ill afford to remain within these walls for much longer. Already some of their number had taken to bickering and threats. Unless their boredom was quelled soon, it was likely that the less disciplined among them would fall upon each other in murderous fury. It was time to move on.

“Regiment! Welcome to Nagarythe. Not far from here lies Anlec, ancestral home of our birthright. We shall strike soon enough, but first I need information. A patrol is required. Make ready!” called the Commander, breaking the awkward silence.

The Regiment formed a tight formation behind Caranordor, Aegnyr close enough to his charge to catch the Seeress should she falter, knowing her defiance would not see her remaining behind the safe walls of the garrison.

“Move out!” came the order from the Caranordor’s lips. The gates swung open and the march began.

There was more to be wary of in these lands than the beasts that walked through them. For old Nagarythe was the home of the famed Shadow Warriors. Sharing a bloodline with the elves that became the Druchii, these vengeful nomads were driven by hate, relishing their tireless work in slaughtering any Dark Elf that might step foot upon their homeland. Legends of their cruelty and savagery had earned them disdain and mistrust from their gentler kin, who saw them barely any better than the Druchii themselves. Still, whilst their loyalty was sworn to the Phoenix King, their brutal but effective work was permitted. Expert trackers and skirmishers, they were not to be taken lightly, and knowing what was out there, the Regiment moved quietly and carefully, shields ready to deflect a well-aimed arrow, eyes peering into the deepest shadows, whilst an ever-present feeling of being watched fell amongst them.

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The walls of the gulley they followed from the gulley diminished in height until they levelled out at the edge of a small cove. Here, a small fleet of corsair vessels were anchored. “Our kinsmen are here.” Caranordor uttered, gesturing to the Regiment to investigate the landing. A handful of boats had been pulled up onto the shale beach, where their seafaring kin seemed to be in battle with a handful of rebellious prisoners, clearly escaped from their captors.

Barking orders at his charges, the one seemingly in charge of this disaster, caught Caranordor’s eye. Thinking that reinforcements had been sent to assist him in recovering control, the Druchii strode over to the Commander, sweeping his sea dragon cloak over his shoulder as he gave a bow and introduced himself as Kherauz the Tamer. Without a word, Caranordor spat on the ground, then backhanded the corsair, who staggered backwards, rubbing his jaw in surprise.

“How did you lose control of some thalken, slaves no less?” hissed the Commander, outraged by the seeming incompetence of the one before him.

“We were ambushed. Three shadow warriors and a mage,” he growled back “Seems they weakened the cages before we drove them off”. Some of the Regiment glanced at each other, the descriptions given matching the small group that had ambushed them in the snowstorm along the road from Chrace three days ago. If it were them, they now rotted on the lonely path with none to mourn them.

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With a barked command, the Regiment were ordered into action. Weapons drawn, they strode with bitter confidence into the fray where they were met by three rampaging prisoners, armed with stolen pikes charging at Sildra, Amarthandir, and Slaa. Nimbly stepping aside, Sildra tripped her attacker with her staff, sending him tumbling to the ground with all the grace of a drunk peasant. Slaa swiftly parried a thrust with her left dagger, bringing her right arm back ready to slash back with a poison laced blade, cursing as her blow fell short by a hair’s breadth of disembowelling him. Amarthandir, taken aback by the audacity of these upstart slaves, relied on his shadow magic to defend. Appearing to remain still as the enemy’s blade thrust forward towards his left leg, he suddenly appeared yards away, cursing to his foe as seemingly his cast was too late. Red bloomed through his robe as he crumbled to his knees, wounded.

“Smash their skulls and drink their blood!” howled Caranordor, charging into the fight. “Khaine!!!” yelled Gretka, knives whirling around her. Gritting his teeth, Amarthandir stood up, extending his hands towards the slave that wounded him. With a look of terror on his face, the slave’s joints began to twist and turn at impossible angles before he crumpled broken to the ground, a bloody mess.

Turning to the prisoner as he pushed himself up, Sildra waved a hand, causing her target’s arms and legs to freeze rooted to the ground. Walking slowly towards him, she lowered her staff towards his head with a gruel smile. It was the last thing that he saw before his head exploded in a gout of blood, brains, and bone.

Stepping in to assist Gretka, Drikaukal blocked a sweeping glaive blow, pushing him back with a laugh savouring the look of terror on the prisoner’s face, Gretka clapping with glee for him. Kicking the thalken to the ground, he brought his spear down with two hands to stab his victim’s arm, before looking deeply into the weak kin’s eyes. Pulling his spear out with a merciless twist, he slashed across the neck of his victim, slicing it open with a spray of blood.

The sight of this slaughter at the hands of well armed reinforcements seemed to break the morale of the prisoners. Some attempted to flee and were brought down with crossbow bolts. Others huddled together, weeping for mercy, and prayers to their gods for salvation as they were rounded up and herded back into their cages by the corsairs.

“I’ll not forget this.” Kherauz uttered gratefully to the Commander, as order was restored. Caranordor glanced at the small fleet, before turning over his shoulder and replied, “Nor shall we”. The Druchii’s incompetence was not to be suffered, yet they could still prove useful. The Regiment had long left its ties to the sea behind with the Black Ark at the Blighted Isles. A favour could certainly be claimed should it be required, he thought, considering that the ships could provide a swift means of traversing the seas around Ulthuan’s outer coast.

“We’ve wasted enough time here,” he growled. “Regiment, march!”

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If you wish to join us or learn more about us check this topic:
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Previous Chapters:

Chapter I - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=23964
Chapter II - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=24190
Chapter III - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=24669
Chapter IV - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=24808
Chapter V - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=24875
Chapter VI - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=24880
Chapter VII - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=24898
Chapter VIII - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=24937
Chapter IX - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=24976
Chapter X - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=24979
Chapter XI - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=25000
Chapter XII - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=25033
Chapter XIII - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=25053
Chapter XIV - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=25067
Chapter XV - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=25155
Chapter XVI - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=25174
Chapter XVII - viewtopic.php?f=55&t=25801

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