Sorry b15, I lost use of a computer until a new charger comes in the mail, (posting from a borrowed iPod). A shame, this prompt is terrific, and has a ton of potential what with Vydar turning traitor recently. Kudos to TGRF for calling that in his tale of Valhalla.
Well in my story Vydar was an imposter and the real one kept as a prisoner, in case you forgot. But hey, we all have our ways of thinking of how the lore of Heroscape should go.
I think I can post mine soon Bumper, just need to take care of a few things is all.
Finally I got mine ready. I guess I can go first. Hope you enjoy.
From the words of Thorum;
It has been many long years since the war of the wellsprings began. As I grow old and weary so to does this war. As our allies grew with the addition of Aquilla, we have a fighting chance to hold against Utgar's rein of terror. However that was not to be the case. Utgar has summon all of his horde, the mass and bulk of his dark army. He has summoned the recent undead, a personal army of Cyprein, the life stealer. With his army gathered, he has brought forth a wave of darkness upon the land. His army move swiftly to Einar, in order to finish off a threat before he can deal witht the rest of the allies. However Jandar, Ullar, Vydar and Aquilla, have all gathered their forces upon the open plains. They alone stand to face the tied of evil that marches before us. They alone must hold until Einar brings his forces to bare against them. Indeed this would be the turning point of the war. However, not all things would come to pass, for as I starred out at the battlefield, there was one thing that I saw that change the course of the battle. An unlikely duo that would decided the course of this fight.
One hour into the battle: Far left flank, Drake's command.
A Airbourne calls out, a rain of arrows come over our heads. I ducked just in time to avoid a bolt hitting my flank. I yell out and the airbourne fire back at the Gruts. Bullets and arrows ranged all over the field as the battle went on. I was in command with the left flank. The majority I commanded was the Airbourne elites, the Viking brothers and their Berserkers, and the 4th Mass was at my command. The enemies main forces have came hard at us, charging into our center lines, trying to force us back, but we have held. The rest of the battle has been a stalemate. Ullar and Vydar have held the center pushing back the undead, the new army that Utgar brought forth. The right flank is slowly being pushed back, Jandar's remaining forces and Aquilla's own tribal army are holding the best they can against the Marro. But with the endless numbers pouring onto them, I fear the army will falter and run. I had to send Denrick and his knights to give them support. While Alastair and his Scottsman were also sent to keep the center lines from breaking. We only had to deal with the Grut horde. There numbers and warriors are fearsome, but we have dealt with them before.
"Sir! More Gruts incoming!"
I looked out and saw the mass of the Grut forces charging at us. I saw in the center stood their leader. Grimnak, riding on top of his beloved and deadly pet. I looked at my men who were weary and tired, but they were willing to continue on to fight by my side. I pointed my sword forward, the men let out a cry and we charged forth at the leader, for if we kill him his army will fall into disary, and the army broken. Gunfire ranged forth toward them. A few in the lines went down, but they kept their march. I drew my pistol, and began firing away. When we were fifty yards away. The men stopped and turned to the sides. I followed their gaze and Gruts were popping out of the ground. Clever, they hid among the dead. I turned my pistol and shot boint blank into a Grut's head. He went down and I turned to fire again as the ambushers came toward us. I turned toward Grimnak and sure enough began to charge at us. I yelled at the men to form in a circle. They got close to me but a few were caught by the Grut ambushers. I turned to help them before they were killed. I tackled the nearest Grut and forced him into the mud. The Grut grabbed my face and tried to choke me, I put my gun forward to fire at his head, but the grut used the other arm and grabbed my hand before I could fire. I fired a shot and missed his head. Before I could move his hand away, he grabbed a handful of mud and slapped it into my face. I rolled off and rubbed the mud away. When my vidion was clear I looked up and the Grut stood over me. However he did not lunge foward. I then realized when I notice the mass of Gruts circling us. I turned around to see my men getting overwhelmed and taken by the enemy. They were forced onto their knees and the Gruts rasied their swords.
Grimnak called out, his Gruts held their position. I stood up and saw the Gruts have surrounded us. I turn my attention on Grimnak. His pet stopped and lowered itself to the ground. It growled at me and showed its fangs. Grimnak droped from his mount and walks toward me. He stopped ten feet away. I lifted my pistol but the Grut I fought grabs me from behind while others went and grabbed my gun. They yanked it off and went to join the circle of Gruts. I turned my attention back at Grimnak. He stood about my height, his teeth came out a little from his lower jaw. He wore a open helmet, his hair came out in a ponytail. He wore light armor onto his chest and legs. His large curved spear, which stood about seven feet, stands firmly in his hands. He smiled at me and began to laugh. When his mirr subsided he spoke at me.
"Drake! It is good to see you again. A worthy enemy that I sought for all these years."
I grinned at him, drawing my blade. "You still mad at what I did during our first encounter?"
Grimnak's eyes narrowed and his mount growled at me again. "Yes! But that is in the past. Since then our fights and encounters were short and never fully finished. This night I will put an end to this rivalry. Once and for all." He raised his spear and slammed it down into the mud. He let go and the spear stayed in the ground. A Grut from the circle came forward and offered a shield. The leader excepted the gift and drew it forward. A large skull was shown on front. He drew a sword from his side and starred at me. I then heard cries coming forth from the side. I turned and through the circle of Gruts I saw the 4th Mass charge in with their bayonets.
"You better stop them, before your men are killed." I looked at the men who starred at me, their captors put their swords and axes closer to them. I quickly called out.
"Stop! Don't fight!"
The men slowly stopped and were a few feet before they reached the circle.
"But Sir! They will kill you all!" One of them called out.
"We will all be killed if you fight! Just leave this to me."
I turned to Grimnak who began to circle me. I brought my sword forward and began to to the same. We circled each other, two rival wolves ready to strike.
"You know how long I have wait for this moment?"
I remained silent as we continued to move in circles.
"Once I defeat you, your skull will fit nicely with my collection."
I starred at the rack of skulls hanging down from his mounts saddle.
"I like to see you try."
We both stopped moving. Grimnak bellowed out and charge forward. I ran at him and we both clashed. We both seperate for a split second before charging again. He rammed me with his shield and forced me back. He swinged wildly at me as I defended, though I was fast to draw my blade against his blows his speed was more faster. He stuck me and I felt a cut onto my left arm. I pulled away and Grimnak waved his sword back and forth, taunting me. I rush foward and feint a left and gone for his shield. I punched the leader in the jaw and grabbed his shield as he backed up. I yanked his shield away and tossed it aside. Few of his warriors cheered for their chieften, only for the eldar Gruts to keep them silent as the battle unfolded. We stuck at each other, blow for blow, he wanted to wear me out before deliver the final killing blow. I knew that was what he wanted and I dodged his blows when ever I can to tire the leader out. His stamina however was astounding and he did not let up. We fought for what felt like hours when it only lasted for about five minutes. We clashed and held there for a moment. He grabbed my shoulder and I wrapped my arm around his. I twisted my hand and his arm went up. The leader cringed but not that much. I drew both of our swords out and headbutted him. His helmet went back and landed into the mud. He stared at me, his lips pushed forward. He raised his head back and headbutted me back. The blow was on my helmet but the pain was quite a whallop. We both seperated and I grabbed my head and pushed the helmet off. Grimnak gritted his teeth and I starred at him. He spit out some blood and I was at the ready for him to make the next move. With another bellow he charged and so did I. We clashed and our swords held in place, neither side moving a inch. Sweat poured down his face as it did mine.
"This is an honorable and worthy fight! Drake!" He said and smiled at me. I couldn't help but smile as well.
A horn bellowed out into the distance. We both stopped and held our positon. The men and Gruts around us looked toward the south east were the noise came from. The horn sounded again and Grimnak turned toward the hills. I turned and followed his gaze.
"Its Einar! He has come!" Some of the men called out.
"I have heard this call before. It is not of you allies." Grimnak said. We both seperated and walked forward. Everyone seemed to stop and stare at the sound. I looked at the top of the hill and a single man stood. His wings came out yet they were dark and almost bat like. He raised his sword and a large cry came from on the other side. At once a large horde came over the hill and black armor covered the top. Swords, spears, and axes clattered the air, the noise was tremendous.
"Those are Orcs!" Grimnak stated and lifted his sword. "Valkrills own army!"
Then as the horn blew again, the massive horde began to charge. The ground shook and the air around us began to shake. The heavy steps from the Orcs was like rolling thunder, and grew louder as they got close. I readied to fight against Grimnak but he made no move to fight. I turned to the oncoming horde and the first few units they attacked were both Gruts and Vikings that got close.
"I knew we should not have trusted him!" Grimnak backed up towards his spear. His Gruts backed and formed up behind him. They let go of my men and they readied themselves behind me. I saw the Grut that held my gun and I yanked it away from him. The 4th Mass took rank and fired away. Few Orcs went down as they dashed toward us. Grimnak let out a war cry and his breathern followed. I yell out and my men and I charge into the enemy.
The battle was intense. The enemy more deadlier then the last. We fought hard and kept the pressure but the Orcs kept coming and sweeping pass many, heading towards the other armies. I hacked my way and found myself next to Grimnak, his body covered in cuts and brusies. We both hacked and slashed at the oncoming Orcs, two figures locked in a endless dance. I turned and saw three more coming behind Grimnak. I rasied my gun and fired at them. They went down before they could lay a hand on him. He looked at me stunned, confusion was on his face. He then hefted his spear and throws it at me. The spear went pass and struck flesh and metal. I turned to see a tall Orc stopped in his tracks, the spear going out the back. Grimnak walked foward and turned the orc around. He grabbed the spear and yanked it out from the dying Orc. The Orc went down and I starred at him. We looked around, seeing the Orcs out numbering us and killing our men.
"Seem's we both fight the same enemy." Grimnak stated as he wiped clean the blood on the spear.
"You know what they say. "An enemy of my enemy is a friend." I think we should work together." I said, almost out of breath.
"And fight a common enemy." Grimnak added. I nodded and Grimnak raised his spear towards the oncoming Orcs. I raised my sword and we both charge into the fray. As we hacked and slashed into the oncoming ranks, both of our men saw us fight together. They too soon put aside their differences and fought together against the enemy. The Vikings seeing this have rallied and charged the sides of the Orcs. Our fight was tremendous as we fought, slaying ten more for every kill they claimed. As we renewed our fight the Orcs that were coming down the hill have soon dwindled. Only pockets remained in groups around the field.
Three more Orcs rushed me and Grimnak. Grimnak twisted and lunged his spear into his enemies flank. I stepped forward with my sword and slashed up, lopping of the Orcs head. The last came at me and Grimnak stabbed him in his lower chest. I drew my gun and pulled the trigger. The Orcs head snapped back and Grimnak pulled his spear out. The Orc crumbled to the ground and was gone. Then everything was silent.
We both looked at each other and looked around us. Gruts, Airbourne, Vikings, and the 4th Mass have mingled together, no hatred or rage was inbetween them and no reason to continue to fight each other. I looked out to the other lines and saw the main forces of Orcs defeated, and Utgar's army in retreat, heading west from where they came. I turned to Grimnak and he whistled for his mount to come. When his pet arrived he climbed on and his remaining Gruts gathered to him. He raised his spear and the gruts made a slow march back, not bothering to attack us. Grimnak stopped his mount to turn and look at me. He gave a small nod and I did the same. He turned and his mount continued to march with the rest. I turned toward my men and we headed back to our own lines.
From the continued words of Thourm;
The battle was over when Valkrill's horde charge through our ranks. His army attacked both sides, not caring for the loss of his own, but to cause as much destruction among both his enemies. Though Einar's men have not arrived until later, they too were held at bay by a small force sent by Valkrill. They were able to defeated them without suffering major casualties, but that intervention cost them to aid us in time. We have known there was a secret General working with Utgar. But to see him betray that alliance. I have no words to describe. This General has shown what he his and what he is capable of. A bringer of Chaos. After the retreat and as we tended to our wounds, I was able to meet with Drake and to ask of what had transpired. He didn't say much but I could tell that much had happened. Two enemies, working together, side by side. They were forced to fight together when the enemy sought both their deaths and after the fight was over they parted ways. I do not know what happened between those two. Either a mutual respect. The force of hands, or a trusted bond between the two was made, I have not sure. But what I do know is that this experience might prove something in Utgar's ranks. Those that would turn on him and those that are willing to aid us. I do not know what will become of Grimnak or his horde for helping Drake face the new enemy. But what I do know is that this a turning point in the war. As dearly I hoped that it would have ended this day, evil would always come to continue this bloodshed.
It seems that the war is far from over, and it will continue.
Hoped you enjoyed, I know it was long but I wanted to make it good.
Nice story Bro-man.
Good to be back everyone, been a long while. Sorry for the outrageous length of my entry, but I felt the prompt deserved a story that was as epic as I could make it. (Which by default for me makes it long)
Kato Katsuro, 9th Diamyo of the Tagawa Region, victorious conqueror of the Njuh-Tsoi Barbarian Tribes, and now both Commander in Chief and Supreme Tactician to General Einar, looked down at the map before him and cursed under his breath.
He surveyed the land with an expert eye, taking in the positions of Utgar and the Alliance forces, crucial landmarks and waypoints, refugee camps, wellsprings, and borders between the various regions. As his gaze moved across the worn paper, it naturally settled on the small wooden piece that marked both the source of his frustration and his current location: Castle Kingspur. A small, unremarkable structure of dull grey stone, it was barely more than a permanent fort. This outpost marked a critical part of the Alliance’s defensive border, as it controlled the only valley between the mountains. As such, it was the only way to cross the Thaelenk Mountain Range in large numbers, and it had so far prevented Utgar from launching an attack into the heart of the Allied realms. Kato had been stationed here to supplement the regular garrison, and his samurai army had been bolstered by battalions of Warforged from Vydar, a team on Anubian Archers from Ullar and a band of MaDirck Highlanders, courtesy of Jandar.
Kato stared at the map, cursing yet again. Everything had changed; the alliance was breaking. He had seen the strain lines starting to show months ago, and he had worked with Einar to try and hold the them together. But despite their efforts, things only worsened. The generals were starting to go their separate ways, ignoring their past cooperation. Vydar , obsessed with designing greater machines, had disappeared from the battlefield and was holed up in his castle. Ullar, having been surrounded by his elves for so long, was becoming influenced by their fey magics, and had come to distrust the soldiers from other generals. And Jandar, focused completely on his desire to destroy Utgar, spent every waking moment with his wellsprings, searching the Universe for champions who could help him overcome the evil Kyrie Overlord. Aquilla alone seemed to agree with Einar and realize the need for the alliance. Her pleas for cooperation fell on deaf ears, though, for the other generals had all but forsaken their bonds. Kato knew that Utgar would take advantage of this weakness, and strike hard. The only question was where…and judging by the report he had received moments ago, Kato was certain he knew Utgar’s target.
“Sir!” “Sir!” The ashigaru soldier came rushing through the door, remember a second too late to come to attention before yelling at his commander. Another second later, he realized that he probably shouldn’t shout at the Daimyo at all, whether he was at attention or not. Kato raised his eyes to the ceiling for a moment, then looked back at the flustered sentry, sighing inaudibly as he did so.
“Sir. Utgar forces have entered the valley, and are marching toward our location. They will be within offensive distance in less than an hour.”
“I have been made aware of this movement already. Have there been any developments since the last outpost report?”
“No, sir. Only that we have a better estimate of their number, and some idea has to what type of forces we are facing.”
The sentry went silent, and Kato watched him. After several moments of silence, the Daimyo raised an eyebrow. Well?” he inquired. The sentry stared back, confused for a moment, and Kato closed his eyes in despair.
“How many are there, soldier?
The sentry, still confused by his lord’s actions, hesitated a moment before finally responding. “About twelve-thousand, sir, but more may be hidden in the mountain passes. The force consists mainly of orcs and goblins, although we saw many trolls, ogres, and possibly a dragon amidst the group.”
“Very well,” Kato replied. The soldier remained at attention, and Kato glanced back to the table. In past times, Castle Kingspur could have been held against any army, regardless of numbers. Positioned right at the mouth of the valley, the amount of soldiers that could push attack at any time was severely limited. But the garrisons from the other generals had left months ago, on one task or another. Kato knew that he had to hold this position, for defeat would allow Utgar to launch a campaign into the very heart of the allied regions. Unfortunately, he was doubtful he had the forces to do so.
Turning back to the sentry, he asked: “The messages sent two days ago, requesting aid from the other generals. Has there been any response?”
The sentry was quiet for a moment. “No, my lord.” he said at last. Kato nodded once, his last shreds of hope slowly slipping away.
Not for the last time, Kato cursed the foolishness that had driven the alliance apart. He gazed out over the battlements of the wall where he stood and watched the army before him move into battle formation. The front ranks consisted of ogres, carrying massive scaling ladders. Limited by the narrow valley, they could only fit about two dozen ladder-bearers across. The next ranks where filled with heavy grut orcs, distinguishable by their armor and large pikes. Beyond them, Kato could see seemingly endless ranks of regular orcs and goblins, all howling and screaming their war chants. The sound was almost deafening, echoing off the enclosing mountains and pounding the ears of defenders atop the castle walls. He could feel a sense of unavoidable fear rising up inside him, despite his efforts to ignore it. He knew that the rest of the soldiers felt the same, if not even more terrified. But they were trained not to show it; they were soldiers of Einar, and death was a possibility they faced on a regular basis.
Tearing his gaze from the enemy, he surveyed his defenses. The wall was manned by the fortress garrison, with Ashigaru soldiers carrying Harquebus’ rifles. Spread amongst them was his own personal force of Tagawa archers, along with the revered figure of Kaemon Awa. A veritable legend amongst the younger soldiers, he leaned casually against the battlements, watching the enemy approach. He glanced over, meeting Kato’s gaze, and both of them nodded. Kato allowed himself a small smile, glad that his long-time companion was here. They had shared countless fights together, and each respected the other’s ability.
The sudden silence hit the defenders with almost a physical force. Kato turned back out toward the opposing army, which was now standing still and silent. As he watched, a lone figure detached itself from the group and walked up a small rise. Even from a distance, Kato recognized the black wings and massive broad sword.
“Taelord,” he cursed softly under his breath.
The kyrie commander stopped at the top of the hill, and turned to survey his army. Satisfied that they were ready, and that the pitiful force facing them had no hope of survival, he turned back to face the small fortress. Kato watched as he raised the sword above his head and gave a cry that the samurai commander could hear from where he stood atop the wall:
“Attack! For blood and slaughter! Kill them all, attack! Attack! Take no prisoners! Chaaaarrrge!!!”
Forcing down the terror that rose up inside him, Kato straightened up and gave his own command: “Archers and Riflemen at the ready!” His voice, calm yet forceful as it cut through the din of the screaming orcs, gave no hint to the fear that filled the young Daimyo. All along the wall, the soldiers raised their weapons, Harquebus’ leveled and bows at half draw.
The enemy had begun their charge, jogging toward the castle walls. The sound of thousands of footfalls shook the air like thunder.
“Hold!” Kato shouted, ensuring that no over-eager ashigaru would let loose an early shot. The soldiers remained motionless, awaiting their commander’s call.
The army was drawing nearer. They were at full charge now, sprinting across the open landscape. The ogres were out in front, bearing the massive ladders that would be used to scale the walls.
“Steady!” Kato called, ignoring his own instincts to strike down the enemy while they were far away. He had to wait until the last possible moment, for that was when the volley would have the greatest possible effect.
Kato held off until the ogres were within fifty metres of the walls to give the order. Dropping his hand in a flash, he roared out the command.
A wave of lead and steel smashed into the charging figures. At least half of the ogres went down, suddenly silenced from the vicious attack. Others were wounded, and staggered about or fell to the ground. The others kept coming, while groups of running orcs rushed to seize the ladders that had fallen.
“Ashigaru, reload!” Kato barked the order. “Samurai, fire!” Knowing that the archers were able to draw within the space of a few seconds, he had allowed them another volley. Another half-a-dozen ogres collapsed or slowed.
The army kept charging, now almost at the wall. Kato, seeing that most of the ashigaru had reloaded, gave the order for a final volley. More of the enemy fell, but more kept coming to fill their place. Then, the army gave a roar of triumph as several ladders where lifted up to slam against the walls, steel claws locking them in place. Kato gave a grim smile.
“Ashigaru, fire at will! Samurai, draw swords.” The archers laid aside their bows and unsheathed their blades, moving into position in front of any ladder that had made it to the wall. From somewhere in the middle of the wall, a standard appeared. Hatamoto Taro, his own sword drawn, raised the banner in defiance. As the orcs came over the wall, they were met with the steel of the samurai warriors.
On an open battlefield, orcs gained the advantage from the overwhelming numbers. They would crush their enemies by surrounding them overrunning their position. The wall nullified that ability. The orcs, only able to come up the ladders in small numbers, were forced to face the samurai in single combat. They were slaughtered without remorse as the soldiers, bolstered by the sight of the Einar standard, cut down any who made it to the wall top. The ashigaru continued to pour fire into the enemy ranks bellow. After half an hour of relentless fighting, a horn call sounded over the battlefield. The orcs began to retreat, turning to flee the castle walls.
Kato leaned out to survey the battlefield. Close to a thousand orcs lay dead along the wall top or at its base, and almost all of the ogre ladder-bearers were slain. Soldiers along the wall were already at work trying to remove the siege ladders. Although he had done little fighting, Kato had his sword drawn. He sheathed it now, and nodded to his lieutenants.
“See to the wounded. Prepare for their next attack.”
Within the hour, the orcs regrouped and charged the wall again. This time, they wasted precious moments struggling to lift up the ladders that had been cast down or dropped. Kato directed his soldiers to pour volley after volley into the seething mass of bodies at the base of the wall. The attackers managed to make it to the top, but were again driven back. Countless bodies of orcs and goblins were strewn across the walls and battlements, and were heaped in mounds at the wall base. By contrast, the samurai army had sustained few fatalities, and those who had been injured had been taken to the medical outpost in the courtyard below.
Over the next few hours, the orc army repeated their frenzied charges toward the besieged castle three more times. With each attempt, Utgar’s forces experienced horrific losses, and were driven from the walls. Kato’s army had barely lost a fraction of its number, as the samurai were brutally effective in defending the wall. Kato glanced down the wall now. Admittedly, his forces were tired. The repeated attacks had drained their energy and stretched their nerves taunt, and their weary expressions betrayed this fact. The light was fading fast, and the sky was quickly becoming dark as night came on. Still, Kato thought to himself, fatigue was a small price to pay for the incredible damage they had inflicted. He wondered why the enemy persisted with these attacks, given the losses they were taking. Underlining his already tired thoughts was a chord of uneasiness; it shouldn’t be this easy. Utgar must have something else planned. But then, if he did, why would he waste this many soldiers? His thoughts were interrupted by sounds from the opposing army. Glancing out, he saw that they were preparing for yet another charge. Giving the order, he readied himself for another clash.
The orc army came charging, the same as they had done each time before. Kato watched them from the wall, waiting to give the order for the archers and ashigaru to open fire. It was almost dark now, and becoming difficult to see. Torches had been lit along the wall; while they prevented soldiers from seeing much in the distance, it would allow the samurai to continue their slaughter along the walls.
Kato stood, judging that the army was almost in range. Even has he raised his arm, uncertainty blossomed inside him. How could any general simply waste his troops like this? Did Utgar really have the numbers to keep up such an assault? Hearing a slight cough from the archer beside him, he pushed those doubts from his mind, and dropped his arm, yelling the order to fire at the charging orcs.
They struck without warning. The archers and asigaru, in the middle of reloading, were looking down at their weapons when the Kyrie warriors of Utgar fell from the sky in a drove of whirling blades. The wall top, still and peaceful only a second before, had become storm of thrashing bodies and weapons. The ashigaru were cut down by the dozens, having no way to fight at close quarters.
Shocked as they were by the sudden, vicious assault, the years of samurai training took over. Kato’s hand had fallen to his sword handle at some sixth sense of danger, and he drew it as a Kyrie bore down on him. The upward slash of his draw all but cut the minion in half, and he fell lifeless to the ground.
Dodging the swing of a second attacker, Kato whipped his sword forward and slashed him from elbow to wrist. The kyrie dropped his blade with a howl, only to be silenced by Kato’s second blow to his throat. As his enemy’s head toppled to the ground, Kato gave a cry that carried over the din of battle:
“Retreat! Retreat! Fall back to the citadel!” He leapt forward and thrust his blade through the side of a Minion standing over a fallen samurai. It staggered and fell, and Kato pulled the man to his feet.
“Rally the others!” Form a defensive retreat!” Kato yelled. The man nodded and left, yelling at fellow soldiers as he did. Kato turned back and looked down the wall. His personal guard of Tawaga samurai had slain Utgar’s Minions, but the rest of the wall was a mess of bodies, many lifeless, yet many still grappling. He spotted Kaemon Awa a short distance away, dueling with two kyrie. As he watched, both slumped to the ground, one after the other. Kaemon turned and hastened over to wear Kato stood.
“Orders my lord!”
“Get the survivors off this wall!” Regroup at the citadel!” Kato shouted to make himself heard.
Kaemon gave a short bow and left, slashing another kyrie out of the air as he turned. The body flew past and fell to the ground below. Kato turned and nodded to his guard.
Kato and his guard fought their way to the stairs, cutting through any kyrie that were still fighting. Many had retreated, leaving the few exhausted samurai that remained to face the orcs that now were pouring onto the walls. Kato sidestepped a charging orc, his own sword taking off the orc’s arm at the elbow. They were almost at the stairs, and Kaemon Awa was a short ways behind them. As they reached the stone steps, he paused to glance behind him. That quick movement probably saved his life, as he suddenly saw Taelord and a drove of fresh minions bearing down on them.
“About turn!” Kato screamed, panic making his words crack. Kaemon was the fastest to react, turning and lashing out blindly, and thus slaying the kyrie that was just behind him. Two more swept forward, their furious speed sending them slamming into the samurai captain. Kato leapt forward to help his friend. Swinging and hacking madly, he saw Kaemon struggling against the two minions. He watched as his friend killed the first with an overhand blow, then whipped his blade around to deflect the second attacker. He used the momentum to swing his sword around again into a riposte, faster than his enemy could register. The minion toppled dead a second later.
It was at that moment that Taelord appeared from the mass of bodies and thrust his sword into Kaemon’s stomach.
Kato gave a cry of horror as he continued to fight off the kyrie around him, trying to reach his friend. Taelord stood over the kneeling samurai, a grin of triumph on his face. Kaemon looked down at the sword in his stomach, then up at Taelord’s laughter with an expression of utter contempt. Taelord had time for a brief moment of surprise as Kaemon took a step forward. Impaling himself on Taelord’s blade, he drove both his katana down into the kyrie before him, burying them to the hilt. Taelord died, his expression one of surprise, and then both warriors slumped to the ground. Kato reached is fallen comrade a second later and lifted him up, supporting him with bloodstained hands. But the warriors eyes were already glazed over with the shadow of death. He still wore his expression of contempt. Kato bowed his head and let his tears flow, all but oblivious to the battle around him.
The cries of orcs brought his attention back to the present. They were rushing over the walls now, coming toward him. Glancing around, Kato saw that his samurai guard had all fallen in their struggle with Taelord’s Kyrie. He rose to his feet and gripped his blade with both hands. He screamed at the orcs, determined to protect the body of his ally. It wasn’t so much a war cry as it was a bellow of mindless fury.
The orcs leapt upon him, hacking and slashing and screaming. Kato stood with his back to the battlements, his sword weaving a deadly pattern of steel and blood. Driven by anger and adrenaline as he was, and despite the bodies that continued to pile up around him, the sheer number of endless orcs slowly began to show. As he staggered to his knees, a frown of weary disappointment spread across his face. Depressing that it should end like this after all that’s happened, he thought to himself. Strength failing, sword drooping, Kato prepared himself to face the inevitable.
A flash of light burst across the wall top, a light so intense it blinded all the orcs who saw it. Screaming now in pain, they staggered back from the golden figure that landed on the wall. Kato felt a strong hand grasp his shoulder before he faded into blackness.
Kato awoke, looked around, and slowly stood. Despite the ache he felt throughout his body, he was surprised that he was still alive. Looking out, and realizing that he was standing high up a mountain peak, he gazed at the burning, smoking wreck of Castle Kingspur that lay in the valley below him. A movement caught his gaze, and he turned to see a Kyrie standing a short ways away.
“You saved me,” Kato spoke with an inflective, questioning tone.
“Yes I did, Kato Katsuro. I am Aquilla.” The kyrie that stood before him was beautiful, with flowing brown hair that spilled on to her golden armor. She looked at him now, a mixture of sorrow and weariness in her green eyes. Kato managed a grunt in response. He was too tired, felt too much loss to give much care for anything right now. He glanced back down at the smoking ruin.
“It's over, isn’t it?” he asked, his tone flat and uncaring. Aquilla looked at him questioningly.
“The alliance,” he continued. “All our work, all our effort, everything we fought and died for. It was in vain. The alliance is broken. We have lost.” At those last words, his throat choked up, and he looked down.
A moment later, he felt a hand on his shoulder. He looked back up into the face of the beautiful kyrie. She gazed at him, and then spoke:
“An alliance can never be broken,” she whispered softly, “if the cause for which it stands is still alive. And a cause will never be lost until there is no one left to fight for it.” Kato stared back at her, unblinking, feeling the rush of raw emotions that still flooded through him. He waited, silent, as they slowly began to settle. As a small sense of peace final came over him, he looked into Aquilla’s eyes and nodded once.
Still hoping for more entries to come in! Would hate to have written all this for nothing.
Last edited by Dadnarg434 : July 29th, 2012 at 01:02 PM.
Well, there will be plenty of time for new additions. I will be away starting tomorrow and going through the week. If at least one more is in by the time I get back, I'll judge then. See ya in a few days!!
Got back from vacation! Good to see you back Dadnarg! I love you entry. The massive charge of orcs against the walls and the death between Taelord and Kaemon was just epic. I can't wait for the results!
I have a post on it's way, but I need to hit the sack right now. I'll finish it later. Be sure to check out my new fanfic Emiria Šther adept. Which by the way I fully intend to finish. It'll be a short one I promise.