Summer, Year 761 of the New AgeDeep in the Underbelly of OakfernFeaturing: Captain Urs,Urs’s Word Count: 1,130NPC Janquil (OF Guard), NPC Roddrick (OF Guard), & NPC Serian (OF Grey Stag)
drip. drip. drip.
The sound was gentle, almost tranquil.
A soft rustling made his ear twitch. Good. It was about bloody time. He had waited too long. Beside him, the shorter stag tensed, eyes locked on the passage ahead. Then voices drifted across the stone, laughter.
Janquil glanced up at him, waiting for a command.
Urs shook his head a little, no not yet. They could escape if the trap was sprung too soon.
Closer and closer the strangers came, unaware of what way ahead.
”Now!” he barked, leaping forward with Janquil right on his heels.
An arm of water snaked out through to air, twisting and winding its way around the strangers’ legs. They shrieked and cried out in fear.
A grey stag turned tail and ran back the way they came, only to slam head first into a large red guard who had closed in from behind.
Satisfaction and anger filled Urs’s chest as the three stags were herded deeper into the tunnels. Down the group traveled, far from the reaches of curious ears and eyes.
It would not due to question them where the herd may see. Not this group.
He had been watching them for over a season now, sending a few loyal fawntakers to trail the stags whenever they left the caverns. He knew their secret, their betrayal and shame. Though, there was still much to learn from them.
”Hey! You can’t just seize us for no reason!” one snarled as they were filed into a quiet cavern. ”WHat is the meaning of this?!” another snapped. Serian was it? The grey guard who decided to challenge Urs for being a mudblood sympathizer. Oh yes, he remembered this stag quite well.. The third stayed silent, cowarding away from the guards.
Urs bay stood before them, eyes sharp and accusing.
”You want to know why I have seized you?” His sharp voice echoed through the cave.
The captives watched him defiantly.
”I have been watching the three of you for quite some time now. What kind of Captain would I be if I didn’t know the business of my faithful guardsmen?”
Janquil chimed up an answer, ”A pretty shitty one if i do say so myself.”
”Well there you have it boys. I would be a pretty shitty Captain if I didn’t look after my soldiers. What I have found greaves me to the core though...So unspeakable, I’d rather hear it from your own lips.” his voice trailed off, attention locked on the coward of the prisoners.
”You are a newer recruit if memory serves me right. Fresh from training, so tell me son. Tell me what would cause you and your companions to journey into Blackwood’s forest so often. Seems a bit odd for guards of the inner tunnels. I sure don’t remember setting the likes of you up for border patrol...Roddrick? Did you assign these fine stags to ward off those filthy Oathbreakers?”
”No sir, I don’t believe I have. Not these three. They’re not suited for the black forest patrol.”
A frown touched Urs’s face. “How odd. Well, why were you out there?” he purred. ”You can tell your Captain the truth.”Thump thump. Thump thump. Urs could feel the buck's heart pounding, life blood racing through his veins as their eyes locked.
”Don’t tell him a thing!’ snapped the grey. “He is no friend of ours. This bear seeks to destroy the herd!
The younger stag flinched away from his pal’s words, eyes looking up at Urs with a plea. ”I i.. uh..sir. I Captain sir… w..we were..”
Urs waited as patiently as he could, tail twitching like an agitated feline. ”Go on,” he coaxed.
Roddrick glared harshly at Serian and the second stag, daring them to speak out of turn again.
The young stag choked down his stutter and forced his words out at last. ”She..She said she could help us to purge the herd of all the weaklings. We..we just had to report information to her and we would get more power than we could hope for as normal guards..”
~She?...~ His spies never said anything about them meeting a doe… then again, none of them had been able to follow the three to their meeting place either..
”You fool!” the second stag hissed. ”You’ve ruined everything. She’ll never help us now!” the stag lashed out to strike the younger of his companion.
He was on the younger stag, stomping him relentlessly. Janquil used ice to shove them apart. The young stag was laying on the floor, bloodied and struggling to breath from his tattered throat. Urs knew there wasn’t a thing he could do for the buck, already his life was fading away. Soon, his legs stopped twitching and he lay still.
He was going to sing like a bird, and tell Urs everything, but now he was dead. What a pitty. The Captain snarled, ”It’s bad enough that you two have been caught relaying information to the OATHBREAKERS but now you have killed one of your own sworn brothers in front of your Captain?!” he spat.
”OH WE know good and well what kind of Captain YOU are!” Serian hissed.
”You are no better than us! We know your secret….and we will turn the herd against you. What will they think when they hear of the blood you have spilt!?”
His words took Urs by surprise.
~No. He couldn’t know. No one knew. No one~
His surprised must have flashed across his face because Serian continued with a nasty snarl.
”Noble Urs, Brave protector of the weak..Wait until the herd hears of what a monster you Truly are...We’ll tell them all, and you will become the most hated traitor in all of Oakfern.”
Letka’s words rang in his ears.
"Maybe one day you'll tell me about your demons, in the same turn, I'll tell you about mine. But until then, love, I am with you..."
No. She would never know his demons. No one could. These two were a threat to him, his herd, to her and their fawn.. Urs would not allow this to continue any longer.
Head raised, the Captain gave a low humorless laugh. ”Oh my. Such tough words for two traitors. You have been informing the Blackwoods on our patrols, I figured that much out after they started intercepting us easier...Your crime is unforgivable, chirping away Oakfern’s secrets to the enemy.”
Urs turned his back on them and started to walk away.
“Captain. What exactly should we do with these two?” a voice called.
Urs stopped, never looking back as he smiled the darkest of grins.
“Janquil, Roddrick, silence these Little Birds.”
Screams of death never sounded so sweet...