Gastien, unafraid, maintained his rank behind his mounted leader, admiring the long length of green cape, unaffected by the wind, carrying the murmurs of the horde before them. Feeling his mount begin to wince, Gasiten looked at his comrades and noticed them inspecting theirs.. The enemy force was now fully in sight, but this was today’s fourth skirmish and their strategy remained the same throughout, to tire these savages, before taking the initiative of battle and destroyed them, No.. The horses knew what to expect, and the casted enchantments to calm them during battle were far from wearing off.. Something was amiss and this point only struck further as stragglers from the main force of the exhausted berserkers, now charged into the battlefield once more, their madness seemingly renewed, as they charged forward past their exhausted clansmen.

Gastien looked at his comrades again, exchanging looks of surprise, their mounts now outright shaking, as their plate armor clinked from the shivering muscles. Gastien placed his hand upon his mounts plated armor, feeling it shake. Fear. This was it. Gasiten raised his hand into the air, as the ones beside him did as well, waiting from the order from their leader.

Looking back, their leader saw the raised hands of his most trusted and gave the order without hesitation, knowing this was the time. “Dismount!” he yelled back, as his green cape descended into a pile of fabric at his feet, the life once in it, seemingly drained. As his trusted followers did the same, he retracted the enchantments on them and watched them flee in primal fear, back towards the main force, the soldiers in front reigning them in, leaving the warriors behind to comprise the front line.

Frantic yelling drew closer and as the berserking clansmen passed their exhausted brothers, a wave of madness descended, from back to front, as their back ranks, seemingly by their mere presence, were thrown back into the same berserker rage that once filled them, as the flank ranks charged forward, the next ranks left behind doing the same, until their front ranks were now the farthest back, until they to joined in their comrades rage. “What is this madness!?” Gastien exclaimed, now standing side by side to his comrades and their leader. A dark, large, assuming shadow stirred in the dusted wind far behind the clansmen, obscured, other than its large general shape.

The leader looked to Gastien, their eyes meeting behind their steel visors “Stay focused!, After we dispatch these wild men, the real battle begins!, Do not fall victim to the influence that beast possesses!”

Gastien’s war hammers neck was long.. His gauntlet gripped the leather wrapped handle tightly, as his other gauntlet, through the handle of the cast iron shield, he gripped tighter. Normally, a man of Gastien’s size would almost be immobile from the sheer weight of the armor he wore and arms he wielded, but due to the influence of their leader and his power being put through them, he felt weightless, moving swiftly and without obstruction or strain, the other 8, along with Gastien, being influenced the same, like fingers of their leaders hand, they waited to step forward and deal blows together, like a fist.

Their leader, his green cape now a victim of the wind, stepped back and raised his hands “Brothers, you are instruments, facing an orchestra of deafening destruction.. But our tune alone will be sung at the end of today!, Together, we shall task ourselves with feats unachievable otherwise!”

Gastien felt the leaders influence surge through him, watching the mad men coming to striking distance. Naked, the berserkers must of been expecting to be faster than the heavily armored knights, their primitive weapons being raised, only to have their bodies and limbs smashed by the swift, unnatural strikes of the knights.. Gastien marveled at the power of his one-handed strikes, fast and strong, sending any attacker to the ground in a single blow, before recoiling to hit the next attacker.. Even their berserker rage not enough to break the small line of men, their shields unscathed, as they dismantled the frenzied clansmen, free of danger. Breaking free, the knights now began to enter free style combat, fighting 2-4 attackers, each at once. Gastien’s speed was unmatched by the attackers, slamming his shoulder into a berserkers skull, feeling it crush as he swung his hammer at another. Gastien saw an axe flying towards him and easily dodged it, leaving his shield still unused.

Very few in numbers now, the clansmen began to scream even more violently, as the shadow behind them now loomed, approaching closer; Gastien saw one clansmen charging from the dusted wind, now howling inside of his helmet, obscuring his vision more and more. Fire red, the clansmen eye’s burned, as the man screamed like a banshee. The knight in front of Gastien went to meet the attacker, but surprisingly, the clansmen threw an incredible punch, swift, caving the knights chest plate in and sending him flying off his feet onto the ground below.

Gastien felt part of his power he shared with his comrades dwindle, as their leader shot a wicked bolt of thunder from his palm, dispatching the clansmen who now descended upon their downed comrade, exploding into a violent mess of limbs and meat. “Regroup!” The caped leader screamed, as the knight fumbled onto his feet, towards them, his breathing clearly obstructed by his sunken in plate. The last 4 clansmen now erupted from the dusted wind, as the looming shadow behind it, casted some sort of spell, glowing red runes now visible in the shadow’s form, like a torch in the dark distrance, but still obscured by a shadowy veil.

4 of the glowing red clansmen charged, but slowed, as the one in front began screaming violently. The giant being, cloaked in shadow, raised its great claw, illuminated by the burning red runes now and unleashed a terrifying primordial scream. The 3 clansmen’s aura grew intense, melting their vessels as the escaping red energy channeled into the fourth one, who grabbed his head, mimicking the shadow beasts terrible scream.

“Gastien!, You are our champion, step forward and face it!” The other 7 knights joined the eight already on his knees, resting the incredible weight of their armor and weapons, as their leaders power left them and entered Gastien, who now surged with energy, stepping forward to meet the dark champion, who’s body began to decay and contort from the heavy influence of evil now projected onto it.


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