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Author Topic: CAIRLANN - Coming Soon  (Read 6545 times)

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Offline Operative13

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Re: CAIRLANN - Coming Soon
« Reply #60 on: July 12, 2021, 02:05:17 AM »
A Tales of Cadamaria Story - Battle of Garagil Pass (Part 4)
Like a pack of wolves with snarled teeth and rabid growls, glimmering swords and arrow tips eyed one another as Captain Halan and his men stood their ground around their fallen fellow. The wolf pelt man and his company slowly approached the surrounded knights, gazes trained against the other, his blade still held towards the Lord Captain.

“You should have killed us when you had the chance, Hersir,” said Halan.

“And you should surrender when I offer it, Cairlannder,” the man replied. “I know those colors you wear on your armor. Either you’re a brave knight to come all the way here with such poor protection, or a stupid one, and with how you turned down my offer, you must be the stupid kind.”

Halan scoffed. “Would you expect less of a Knights Chaplain? For a man of your experience, I would’ve thought you’d know better than to try.”

“Not as foolish as you are. Do you know how often I get to capture a Captain of Cairlann?”

Halan did not answer, to which the man chuckled.

“It is a trick question: I never had a thing for prisoners. You should be honored! You’ll be an excellent prize to bring to our great King Olvek, and I’m willing to spare your men’s lives if you come with us willingly.”

“I’m flattered that you honor this stupid knight with an offer of surrender, but out of honor and great respect to you, I’m afraid I must decline.”

“Crawl back to your Goat’s Ass, you pig-stinking dog!” Hrodgar spat.

The hersir’s proud grin scowled into fury. “You know what? I think bringing your heads on a spike would be a finer prize instead. Kill them!”

The archers drew their bows, to which Captain Halan immediately hollered to his knights.

“Shields!”

At a moment’s notice, Bowdyn and Hrodgar interlocked their shields with Halan’s, putting themselves between the barbed hail and their wounded Cenric. Arrow tips clicked and clattered against the knights’ hardy shields, and with the Lord Captain’s resounding cry to push forward, marched against the enemy’s thunderous shafts. The archers slowly withdrew, keeping their distance from the glistening spark of the knights’ gray mail, but the slippery slope of the outcrop stole their balance and distracted their attention. Only a few men within the hersir’s party carried shields to halt the Cairlannder advance, and when they came within blade’s reach, the knights broke from their clasped formation and charged.

Edges forward, the knights bashed through the enemy’s hastily-assembled line, shattering jaws and breaking ribs as they plunged their swords through their poorly-armored foes, donning little more than hats and helms. The hersir’s men did all they could to strike back, slashing and stabbing at the knights’ joints and near the head and neck, but the heavy chainmail they wore stopped much of the fatal blows. Like striking at a boulder, the enemy could do little but slow the knights down as they drew closer to the hersir himself. The archers could not fire for risk of hitting their own as Halan and the others fought behind their foes.

The hersir gritted his teeth, his eyes mad with rage. “Surround them! Cut them down! Don’t let them escape!” He then took up his horn and roared a great cry across the fields, the echo carrying itself to the horizon as it weaved through the twisting rocks. More were sure to come now.

Halan parried a blow from the side and quickly swung down into the man’s neck before hearing another scream coming from both his sides. He shuffled to the right, keeping his shield up as he lined the two men one-by-one, preventing them from striking at once. A thrust from the man in front, knocked aside by Halan’s shield. As the man tumbled forward, Halan quickly stepped past and struck the other man across the neck before he could raise his shield. The tumbling man uprighted himself and wildly swung back, dazed by Halan’s forceful push, but his sword only met the knight’s blade, who parried the strike with ease before plunging the sword through the man’s abdomen. As his opponent fell, Halan looked ahead to see the hersir before him.

The hersir only smirked with a devilish gaze. Halan nodded, understanding he would be the one to face this man. Halan looked to his sides: Hrodgar had several arrows stuck across his chainmail, cutting down the archers refusing to flee while Sir Bowdyn suffered blows in front and behind from the remaining swordsmen circled around him, fighting as badly wounded as he was. Time was not on their side, and Halan would have to finish this fight before reinforcements arrived.
“To give of oneself is the noblest of all acts.”

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Offline Operative13

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Re: CAIRLANN - Coming Soon
« Reply #61 on: July 19, 2021, 02:58:58 AM »
A Tales of Cadamaria Story - Battle of Garagil Pass (Part 5)
Halan and the hersir readied their shields. In a split instant, they struck towards each other, wood breaking as their shields rammed together and turned sideways. Through the gaps, their swords swung, each one aiming for the exposed gaps in their armor between the neck and armpits. Yet both failed to reach their mark, striking instead squarely at their collarbones. The men spun off from one another as they disengaged. Halan lifted his sword and shield in a ready stance, but he could feel the twisted pain gnawing at his chest. The chainmail had blunted the hersir’s swing, but the bruise stung worse than any cut. He gritted his teeth, bearing the pain, but the hersir merely grinned back. It was as if the man revelled in the pain, welcoming death at his door.

It was apparent from the first strike that they were evenly-matched. Both had successfully avoided a fatal blow, yet still came out wounded regardless. Halan doubted whether he would win a battle of attrition with this man, who seemingly laughed with glee as he brushed off the dent in his chainmail. Even then, Halan had exhausted much of his strength fighting the hersir’s men earlier. He had to end the fight quickly, or he would surely lose. Halan waited for a response from the hersir, preparing to parry whatever came his way, but it only took a brief pause to realize the man was stalling for time. The hersir only gave a twisted grin beaming side to side, unmoved even as his band fell to the other knights. The horn had been sounded, and it was only a matter of time before the knights would be caught in the onslaught of Olvek’s troops descending upon the hills. Victory would come naturally to the hersir, and he had no intention of blundering his advantage. Halan would have to make the first move.

They skirted around one another, looking for an opening around the sides. Halan sidestepped and swung at the hersir’s sword arm, but it only took the man a step back to evade it. Halan waited, then made a low slash at the hersir’s torso, only to be parried and narrowly avoiding a cut himself by stepping back and blocking the hit with his shield. Time was running out, but Halan had to wait for an opening. He couldn’t risk committing any extended trades with the hersir, for a single misstep could end him there. He kept his distance, watching the hersir’s attention, testing his response with every thrust and strike to the man’s sides.

“Come on! You want to fight? Then fight!” taunted the hersir. “Stop pawing me like a limp kit!”

It was then Halan knew the man was getting restless. Their small nips at one another began to take its toll on the hersir, who could not find an opening to exploit in the Cairlannder’s defenses. Perhaps if he allowed the man to answer, Halan could turn the fight to his side. But it had to be done flawlessly. The hersir could easily turn the fight around if Halan so much as blundered his trades. He raised his sword, ready to strike once more.

Halan struck towards the hersir’s shield arm, but was blocked and answered with the man’s own thrust. Halan turned his shield and knocked back the incoming strike as he stepped back and withdrew his sword from the other’s shield. Another stalemate, but Halan would not stop there. A low swing to the hersir’s thighs, to which the man jumped back in time to evade it and replied with a thrust of his own. Halan crouched and blocked the incoming strike with his shield, propping back up to make a thrust himself. But the distance was too great, failing to make contact before the two withdrew once more.

“Is that the best you got?” the hersir hollered. “I can do this all day!”

“Don’t you ever shut up?” said Halan.

The hersir boasted a haughty laugh. “What’s the matter, Faetor Gyre? Run out of breath?”

“Big talk for someone dressed in his own filth.”

The hersir grew wide-eyed, and in a fit of rage, thrusted his shield edge toward Halan’s helm. In that split moment, Halan slammed the flat end of his shield forward and threw himself forward, straight into hersir’s chest. The hersir, taken aback by the knight’s daring tackle, turned his blade to jab into the back of Halan’s exposed neck, but soon found himself flipped over and tumbling down the ridge. Halan had abandoned his sword and shield to take the man’s legs, sending them both flying down into the stony pillars below. Halan and the hersir smashed into one of the pillars, knocking the wind from the two as Sir Bowdyn and Hrodgar watched in horror.

The hersir, still clinging onto his blade, raised his sword to jab again, but Halan took hold of his wrists and slammed his helmet into the other. With all his might, Halan held the hersir’s wrists down as he continued knocking the man’s head down back into the stone pillar. Stubborn as the hersir was, he refused to relinquish his blade. Halan then took the hersir’s right arm and tossed him over, even as the hersir himself grabbed ahold of Halan’s cape and entangled Halan’s head into a coiled ball as he flew over his shoulder. The force from Halan’s back throw was enough to dislodge the blade from the hersir’s grip, but now the knight was blinded.

The hersir picked himself up and hurled several punches at Halan’s head, striking him at the sides as he struggled to break free from his overturned cape. He could hear the others calling out to him in the distance as blow after blow buckled through his helmet, the strength of each hit knocking Halan to each side. He felt something hot and wet, but it wasn’t the odorous sweat dripping down his face. It was thick, and the scent sharp. Blood? But he was not bleeding. No, it was the hersir’s. His punches bore so much striking against metal, his knuckles were bleeding.

Another punch and Halan crashed into the ground, still wrapped in his own cape. Halan reached around for the clasp, unable to see through the white shroud surrounding him. Hearing the heavy boots fast approaching him, and the slight schwing of a blade, Halan hurried. As the hersir’s breath drew near, he felt the straight pin of his clasp and unbuckled the cape from his armor. Free from his snare, Halan stood up just as the hersir charged at him with a knife in hand. With only the cloth of his cape at hand, Halan did the only thing he could do next.

He tossed the cape straight over the hersir’s head, trapping him in the same manner Halan had found himself just moments before. The hersir jabbed forward, viciously striking at Halan, but failing to land any hits. Halan tugged the cape around the hersir’s neck and pulled him down to the ground. With a heavy grunt, the hersir planted face-first into the rocky soil as Halan jumped atop his back and began strangling his neck. The hersir flopped, twisted, and turned, rattling his knife as he jabbed against the thighs of Halan’s chainmail. Halan tightened his hold, squeezing as much as he could, but the hersir’s immense strength eventually threw Halan off and allowed him to turn to the sky. The hersir raised his knife, but before he could act further, two blades stuck forth against the skin of the man’s neck.

“Drop the knife,” said Sir Bowdyn, his face bloodied over a long cut upon his cheek.

The hersir snarled at the knights, edging his neck into their blades.

“Drop the knife, or we’ll put your head on a spike ourselves,” Hrodgar snarled back.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2021, 06:08:37 AM by Operative13 »
“To give of oneself is the noblest of all acts.”

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Offline Operative13

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Re: CAIRLANN - Coming Soon
« Reply #62 on: July 26, 2021, 02:14:09 AM »
A Tales of Cadamaria Story - Battle of Garagil Pass (Part 6)
The hersir growled, tightly clenching the knife with his bloodied fists. The knights kept their guard, weary of the hersir’s ravenous rage, their wrists stiff as they pressed their swords against him. However, after a few brief moments the hersir soon gave in, slowly placing his weapon down next to his side. The hersir cursed at the knights in a foreign tongue, at which point Hrodgar kicked the knife away.

“You alright, my Lord?” Sir Bodwyn asked of Halan.

Halan spat, his cheeks welted from the pummeling earlier as he pulled off his beaten helmet.

“I’m not seeing angels, so that’s a start,” Halan said, blinking his eyes as he gazed up into the bright gray skies.

Halan then turned to his men, their armor muddled in drying blood and damaged in various places. Several arrows pierced through Hrodgar’s chainmail, yet the seasoned knight strutted around seemingly without a care. Sir Bodwyn, however, limped on his left leg and struggled to keep his blade up, his arm barely able to contain his shaking; his chainmail had almost completely broken apart during the fighting. The two had suffered serious injuries fighting through the hersir’s horde, and although Halan felt guilt for putting them through this struggle, it was their third companion Cenric that worried Halan the most.

“Cenric!” Halan called out.

“Right here, Captain!” the young knight called out from behind a rock. He must have crawled his way to safety when the fight broke out.

“Can you stand?” Halan asked.

“I don’t think so,” he replied. “The bastards got me good in the leg… all I see is white.”

“We’ll carry you out soon. Sir Bowdyn, if you can fetch Cenric.”

Sir Bowdyn nodded and sheathed his blade before withdrawing to tend to Cenric’s wounded leg. Halan then turned to face the hersir kneeling on the ground with his hands in the air, the swords of the two knights pinned to his neck. He slowly approached, until his figure towered over the man, whose eyes gleamed with sharp defiance.

“You put up a good fight, Hersir,” said Halan.

“I’d have finished you off sooner and you know it,” the hersir snapped. “Your men came between a fight of two equals. It would’ve been fitting for us to die between our blades. They know nothing of a warrior’s honor.”

Halan chuckled. “Fighting twenty to three is considered honorable? I thought we were at war, not a duel!”

“Til Velhas mef thig, Velgyte,” cursed the hersir.

“What shall we do with him, Lord Captain?” asked Hrodgar.

“Tie him up. We’ll bring him back to camp.”

“And do what, exactly? He doesn’t seem like the cooperative type.”

“I’m not talking to the likes of you,” said the hersir.

Hrodgar threw a left swing at the hersir’s face, knocking the man down to the ground.

Halan forced his hand between Hrodgar and the hersir. “Easy, Hrodgar. He’s a prisoner of war.”

“My ass he is! You said it yourself, Captain. The war is over. He’s nothing more than a murderous scoundrel right now.”

“He could have killed us all when he had the chance.”

“And he still tried.”

“Still, he should be afforded a chance for his life, just as he did us. Tie him up.”

Hrodgar grumbled, wary of the hersir that sat and watched the two men. He pulled pieces of fabric from one of the dead men before taking the hersir’s wrists and tying them together.

“I don’t see what’s the point of dragging him along,” Hrodgar spoke out. “We’re beat to Hell as is. We got who knows how many more of those mangy devils chasing after us, and we’re nowhere close to knowing what kind of army we’re fighting against. And you still want to drag a prisoner around bent on killing the whole lot of us?”

“Your man’s right, Cairlannder. You’ll all be dead once my brothers come for you,” said the hersir. “Nothing but fat carrasses for the crows!”

“He knows about the camps more than we’ll ever get looking from the outside,” answered Halan. “He’ll talk one way or another.”

The hersir bellowed a great laugh. “I thought you deaf the first time, but I was mistaken. You’re as delusional as the rest of your mindless trolls. Go ahead! Torture me all you like! I’d rather die with my hands crushing your neck than surrender the Jarl’s plans!”

“Come now, Hersir. Who do you take me as? A barbarian?” replied Halan. “We’re simply going to have a little talk with one another.”

As Hrodgar lifted the large warrior off the ground, several horns roared across the stone-woven fields in a maniacal chorus, each one answering the other. Sir Bowdyn scurried down the ridge with Cenric hooked around his shoulders back to Captain Halan in a panic.

“We must go, my Lord! The warbands approach!” Bowdyn hollered.

Halan nodded to Bowdyn before turning his attention back to the hersir. “Watch over our good guest, Hrodgar,” he told the knight. “If he fails to move, give him a swing or two.”

“Like I’ll ever…!”

Before the hersir could finish his sentence, Hrodgar sacked the man with a solid punch, knocking him back down on the ground before the knight forcefully pulled him back up.

“Aye, I can work with that,” Hrodgar nodded back. “Now get moving, you sorry pig.” He shoved the hersir forward down the path.

Bowdyn and Cenric exchanged worried glances and looked to their battered-faced captain.

“He’ll slow us down, my Lord,” the aged Bowdyn quipped.

“Yes, he will,” Halan agreed. “But I trust Hrodgar will keep that man in line. Let’s hurry. The others will leave if we’re not back soon.”

“I don’t think he’s the one you need to worry about, Captain,” uttered Cenric. “I can barely carry myself.”

Cenric eyed his bandaged wound around his leg. The arrow had pierced through his tendons, and the knight could hardly stand without exacerbating his injury. Halan stared at the wound for a brief moment before shouting out.

“Hrodgar! Come here for a moment.”

Hrodgar, already a few paces ahead of the knights, turned back and brought up the hersir alongside him upon the captain’s call.

“Help Sir Bowdyn carry Cenric. I’ll take charge of the hersir,” Halan said as he drew his sword.

“You shouldn’t, Captain,” Cenric pleaded. “I’ll only slow you all down. Just leave me here and...”

“Get his other arm,” said Sir Bowdyn.

“...no, wait!”

Before Cenric could raise his objections, Hrodgar pulled Cenric’s arm over his shoulders, to which the young knight cried out in pain.

“Just shut up, already,” Hrodgar scoffed. “You sound like my nephew.”

Once more, the horns bellowed, ever closer. The distinct cries of foreign tongue alerted the knights.

“Your young knight understands the situation, Cairlannder.” The hersir beamed at Halan. “Soon, you’ll be the ones begging for mercy.”

“I can offer you a rag if you’d like, but I’d prefer we talk like civilized men,” Captain Halan threatened, before facing the others. “Hurry. We’ve no time to waste.”
“To give of oneself is the noblest of all acts.”

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