Fantasy-21

“What’s happening!” Ringing of bells, deafening, as the Anthranhall entered through Puzzle-Tyrics gate, with only a single guard among the entire strip.

“Clansmen broke through the wall of the residential strip.. Started slaughtering folk, burning houses.. I am still waiting for a report on the situation; most of the guards attended to it.”

Without hesitation, the Anthranhall rode off, his green cape blowing in the wind as he did, moving unnaturally fast, as the group struggled to keep pace. Galloping through the strips, they came upon the entrance to the residential strip, the Anthranhall blowing past a single Clansmen, skin charcoal painted, with primitive club in hand, clearly scouting the area outside the residential strip. Mesmerised by the Anthranhall, the scout did not see Drae’tarn coming, as he swung his hand scythe, decapitating the Clansmen in one swing.

Riding to the end, the Anthranhall gave Drae’tarn orders, who then shouted to the rest of the group “Dismount!, Surround the mages!” Raised shields, the mages followed the warriors, as they grinded out the distance to the end of the strip, their plate boots scraping against the tan brick road before them, panning their view, side to side, seeing the houses on this strip intact, with no attackers insight, “How many more strips to the back of this quarter!?” Drae’tarn yelled back to the mages.

“Forty strips, with.. About 10 houses on each strip!” Elder Grein replied, surprising Manish and Jraedin with his knowledge of anything other than himself or magic.

Drae’tarn now spoke with a different voice, “There are no bodies, other than the guards.. No blood.. The Clansmen have retreated; bring your mounts,” he commanded; clearly, the Anthranhall was at the end of the strip already.

Riding through the strips on their mounts, the mages rode unarmoured horses and their pace was slowed by the Cultists riding heavily armoured mounts. Working their way through the residential strips, they viewed the increasing desolation.. Many of the guards, further in, were strung up, cut into pieces or impaled in strange places, a clear sign they were vastly outnumbered in the battle.

Coming up upon the Anthranhall, his green cape was draped all around him, strangely tied off, not a thread of it touching the ground, contained to his being, examining the massive breach in the brick wall. Elder Grein and the other three of his caste approached the 15 foot wall, asking “What could of done this?”

“You know,” The Anthranhall replied.

‘But.. There are no users among them..” Elder Grein mumbled in fear.

“You know the chaotic nature of magic.. This wall was blown apart.” The Anthranhall replied.

“Do you think by the same who brought the orb into Tyric?” Manish inquired.

“…Go find out, Ximond!”

Behind Drae’tarn, a plated warrior wielding a flail and shield responded “Yes,” receiving his will back, from the Anthranhall.

“Go with the mages, protect them and look for signs of any Clansmen scouts in the town.”

Ximond, conscious for the first time since leaving Naator almost a year before, said “Sir, your power does not feel the same, there is..”

Raising his hand, the Anthranhall replied “SILENCE!, Go!”

“As you wish, sir,” Ximond’s eyes meeting Drae’tarn’s as he parted company, riding with the mages through the strips once more.

Looking at Drae’tarn now, the Anthranhall commanded, amongst the smoking rubble , “Remove your armor.”

“What?” Drae’tarn replied in shock.

“Now.”

Drae’tarn began with his helm, his long black hair falling loose, wet. He felt the cool wind on his face, realising he was sweating profusely, muscles sore, “What is happening to you?”

Sliding out of his plate, he felt his body drenched and strained, cold.. Speaking softly, the Anthranhall replied “Your going to ride back to Naator and speak to my fellow Anthranhall there.. Your going to see if their powers dwindle, with mine.” adding “My guides voice, it grows weaker with each passing sound.. Soon, my influence, my domination, over these 6 will be gone, as well.” Gesturing towards the 6 plated warriors, standing silent, seemingly vacant, but present.. Drae’tarn knew the feeling.

“Under attack?” Drae’tarn asked, confused.

Breathing deep, the Anthranhall replied “..The spirit world is changing.. Lessening, as if the physical and spirit are both ceasing to exist, being phased out.. It is inexplicable.”

“What of the Blight’s, then?” Drae’tarn asked, removing his greaves, his final piece of armor, discarding them upon the ground.

Turning to the wall, the Anthranhall replied “I don’t know,” before turning back to Drae’tarn, “Go find some clothes.. Take Gastien’s vessel with you, the cart is at the front gate.”

Drae’tarn began walking away, backwards, facing the Anthranhall, taking in the view of his comrades, “Will this be your last order, then?”

“Of you.. Yes.” adding “Death, is not the end.. Go.”

Scythe in hand, Drae’tarn turned, walking away, as he heard the remaining warriors mount up and pursue the Clansmen. Opening the broken door to a house hold, he clothed himself, finding a pair of leather boots, a tanned shirt with long sleeves and wool pants, the classic outfit of a Tyric commoner, who were all missing.. He hoped, they would come back, thinking they missed one.

Walking back outside the door, he saw his bulky, heavy, now unwieldy armour, discarded upon the ground. Mounting back up, he chased after Ximond’s party.

 

 

 

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