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Endless Revolutions
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Writer L.M.Dryden
  • G: General Audiences
  • PG: Parental Guidance Suggested
  • PG-13: Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • R: Restricted
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The Long Highway - Chapter of Caravan (I)
Dec 28, 2017
10 Mins Read
No Plagiarism!0SWe8O8E8oib3iFW1cE6posted on PENANA <<PoV: Alyss>>

The woods were thick about with goblins.  Since we left Greenhills, we had both noticed the telltale signs of those filthy vermin.  Left alone, they would breed like rats and before long become a real threat to the nearby communities of people.  One of the main precepts we learn is care for the land, and goblinoids are a plague unto it.  It is almost a sacred duty to rid the land of them, and it seems, that is exactly what is about to happen.copyright protection21PENANATjUNAxXuSg

Father tried to recruit some help from those among the wagons, but it seemed there was no one interested, save for a single softscale boy.  I would consider him courageous, if it didn't look like he would be more of a burden to look after, than an asset in a fight, but with the amount of goblins we saw, every extra body was a distraction to the enemy, and so an opportunity for us.copyright protection21PENANAMT8I7hwgWF

I didn't take much time to look the boy over, he seemed pretty common for a Soryn softscale. He had ink black hair, and wore a grey outfit that helped him appear less visible in the night.  He wore something that looked like a claw, but was wrought of metal.  I had never seen something of it's like before.  On his waist was a belt with many pouches, his boots were padded, the only sounds he made were from his own incompetence on how to walk quietly in a forested area.copyright protection21PENANAEeQHwwDyIi

I continued on point, and father and the boy flanked a bit behind me.  I was the first to pick up the bloodied scent of goblin.  In a small clearing within a copse of trees there were eight goblins visible by a campfire.  On a crude rotisserie was a boar of some type.  It was still cooking, though that didn't stop those nasty vermin from cutting out pieces of half-cooked flesh and devouring it gleefully.copyright protection21PENANAECCzpc7nHZ

Hiding behind a tree, I quietly withdrew my weapons.  They were awarded to me when I completed my training with them a few years ago. Twin cutlass which were given names by Isseth, following an outlander custom to give a name to a possession one would use in situations of life and death.  Father was a bit strange when it came to his habits of integrating outlander customs in his own disciplined life, yet there was no one who felt like correcting him back home, in the glade. I didn't care to either, so being gripped in my claws were Fang and Nail.copyright protection21PENANADtTMb03IgZ

If naming a weapon gave it sentience or a soul, how would it feel about being a tool used to draw blood and end life? Would it accept it's fate and purpose happily?copyright protection21PENANAnVdeCKKgis

A question for philosophers, but not for a warrior like myself.copyright protection21PENANAyX4awumES3

Weapons drawn, I crouched low and leapt forward, using my tail to help propel myself further, faster. There was a wet sound as Fang severed the many tendons and durable muscle fibers within the narrow tube of skin that held the goblin's head atop it's shoulders. The head bounced twice on the ground before the face rolled right into to the campfire.  Nail had already found it's way into the next nearest goblin's body, damaging some vital organ irreperably as I pulled it out.  The green pigment on it's face fast draining into a dull brown, as it realised it was doomed, unable to hold in the vital blood from the hole that had been torn into it's body, no matter how it tried.copyright protection21PENANADvxwiJxlrO

Having felled two in the surprise assault, the remaining six quickly reacted to my presence.  Two had spears, two had some type of makeshift sword and shield, and the other two were stone slingers.  I had gotten lucky and killed the pair of wolf riders.copyright protection21PENANAlOJz2mjNDC

Isseth had dashed into the camp immediately after myself, challenging one of the spear-wielding goblins.  As a goblin thrust forth with it's spear, he twisted his body out of the way, grasping the spear with a claw and sweeping his foe off balance with his tail, and completing the twisting motion coming full circle with the spear in both hands and plunging it into the fallen body of the goblin, pinning it to the ground.  copyright protection21PENANAgbAlm7PJLH

The two sword-and-shield wielding ones approached, cautiously.  Hiding behind their shields, they peeked out swiftly, looking for a way to attack me. copyright protection21PENANAMpdkWw3tRu

Neither of them tried to swing their weapons, instead, one of the slingers who had managed to quickly climb a tree after I arrived had begun to sling rocks in my direction, to assist it's allies.copyright protection21PENANAhdj1Mmo691

The stones were easy to deflect with my sword, but doing so may eventually create an opening should either of the two near me get confident enough to try.copyright protection21PENANAJpcjKyqAhb

Isseth had engaged the other spear wielder, and there had been so sign of the boy entering the frey at all.  What was he doing?copyright protection21PENANAh4Avow1s0T

All of a sudden a streak of firelight shot across the field, and the goblin who had been slinging stones had fallen off of the branch it was perched on, and lay unmoving on the ground.copyright protection21PENANAWi6fkTCIZL

The two in front of me had decided a streak of light was a far greater danger than a serpentia priestess of the swords, and they couldn't have made a greater error in judgment.copyright protection21PENANAJIaW1UvsvM

They wouldn't ever get a chance to learn from it.  copyright protection21PENANAEMReigLkIM

I leapt on top of them, trampling them directly, and with them splayed out from the impact, I stabbed them each in the chest with fang and nail, ending their lives.25Please respect copyright.PENANAP3e6Tqg5oB
copyright protection21PENANAeF5kVpex7d

Isseth had raked the face of the other spear goblin and when it dropped unceremoniously to the ground, he quickly plucked the spear and threw it at the last rock slinger, who cowered the entire fight in a bush by a tree.copyright protection21PENANAiRWtNYoiqT

All foes dead, I wiped off my blades on the dirty rags those vermin wore and sheathed them.copyright protection21PENANA54GXjYd5jW

Isseth was patting the back of the boy, and as I returned to the point position, again father and the softscale were at my flank.copyright protection21PENANASxCXSxm65u

Continuing deeper, we ran into a few more patrols, dealt with in similar efficiency. The boy acted as a sharpshooter of some type.  Making sure to neutralize any foe that could injure from afar, trusting in the ability of myself and Isseth to deal with those engaging in close combat with us.copyright protection21PENANAkolgR8fgqG

It wasn't long before we stumbled upon a terrible sight.copyright protection21PENANA9wKPt4OGa7

"Stronghold."copyright protection21PENANAD2Ff0xNmET

It was as Isseth said.  Before us was a stronghold.  It was surrounded by wooden fences meant for impaling any who would try and climb it or break through.  There were wolf-riders and two lookouts, with actual hoblin archers.copyright protection21PENANAQYhcf9kupL

Hoblins were a greater species, remarkably intelligent, while Goblins were the more stupid of the two.  The real trouble would be when they manage to successfully breed together.  Hobgoblins were a threat on a national level, yet they were a very rare occurance, and not likely to be present in this place.  copyright protection21PENANAazhVpK0drb

With quite a few of the goblin scout or patrol parties already killed by us, all that remained was to take care of the stronghold.  I was eager to go, busting through the front, but Isseth gripped my arm tightly.copyright protection21PENANAl5e0ley8Bc

"Very dangerous.  Must lure outside."copyright protection21PENANA2sbkErtYWT

Father was wise about such tactics. Goblins were easily incensed into fighting, and as long as we could get them to come out of the walls, we could likewise get in.copyright protection21PENANAJ7t12SL36d

Isseth and the boy were talking, perhaps coming up with some measures.  I took the moment to pray.  As a swordpriest of Sset, I called upon his favor for the upcoming fight.copyright protection21PENANAeritsDH1Mi

It is custom to pray for holy venom to smite one's foes.  Instead, father asked I pray for accuracy of the strike, as he presented the boy's metal claw weapons.copyright protection21PENANAeOKp9oQCnN

"True sssssstrike."copyright protection21PENANAw7U08XSU0Y

Was there a point to it?copyright protection21PENANA8fqrIS4qTR

Father may be strange, but he is very patient, and thinks things through, thoroughly.  I've almost never seen him lose in a drawn out battle, even among the best.copyright protection21PENANAJ7GtxPSosg

Praying for the accuracy of the strike, the boy's claw weapons glowed for a moment, then were withdrawn.copyright protection21PENANAbZn5Zw3Rr4

We were hidden behind two very large trees, and the boy had pulled out a vial of powder, pouring it into some kind of metal pocket on the backside of his claws.copyright protection21PENANAPzjg0285s2

When he was done, he looked at Isseth and at myself.copyright protection21PENANAXcaDFIty6V

"Here goes!" he said, as he stepped into view and unleashed to my eyes, a violent magic.copyright protection21PENANAPiUdoTJrLb

From one claw, he pointed at the hoblin lookout closest to us, and a blast of blue firelight came into existance, as an arrow of death which struck the hoblin and threw it off the lookout, and into the camp.copyright protection21PENANAvBKPRLS0Rl

The other claw did the same, as the blessing of the strike assisted it's aim far across the encampment at the other goblinoid in the other lookout.copyright protection21PENANA2OxdsdVVL2

It missed the target, but that was not for the better.  If it had hit, the creature would have at least died easily enough.copyright protection21PENANAQBkLOIExaq

No, the firelight ignited the entire platform, quickly, and the creature went tumbling off, covered in flames, and that was enough to rouse the stronghold.copyright protection21PENANAIF1tvSfnS6

Stepping back into the place of hiding behind the trees, I signaled to father that I would go around to the other side, and attack any exiting there.  He agreed, and so I left the boy and Isseth alone, dashing to the other side.copyright protection21PENANAIVUf8ms4ie

The number of wolf riders they had were few, instead, many goblins poured out suddenly, scanning the environs for any sign of the hostile party responsible for the lookout fire.copyright protection21PENANA68PqTD9ybj

Some of the slingers sent their missles into the darkness of the woods, many skipping off stone, bark, and dirt. None of them coming close to where I was.copyright protection21PENANAYTY0ntSCQL

The few who ventured in the woods close to me, found more than they bargained for.  I quickly ended them, and as the number of those who stood on guard outside the gate began to dwindle, I felt the tempo creep up my scales.copyright protection21PENANAIzGDOP0gTi

The song of Sset.copyright protection21PENANAuZrjqlXzU8

I abandoned my place of concealment, and l charged into the remaning eight at the gate.  My blades followed the rhythm of the song.  I spun and slashed, ducked and leapt.  No weapon marked my scales, and every motion found purchase.  Goblins were torn in half from the magical melody that poured from my spirit into the blades I held.  My tail that slammed into those who were too close were sent flying into the wooden defensive pikes, and impaled.copyright protection21PENANASS2RTpkL2b

When the song ended, there were none left standing.copyright protection21PENANAxLKdoz3pPW

Looking inside, the stronghold was empty.  Seeing to the other side, Father and the boy were also looking across towards me.  copyright protection21PENANAHkW9EnuBWo

We met in the center, and noticed there were a number of lean-tos and makeshift tents that made up the goblin's residence.copyright protection21PENANAKPhMGac1We

What surprised me, was when a single elderly hoblin matron came out to stand before us.copyright protection21PENANAdtZXHoxKNm

I was prepared to kill her, but my blades wouldn't rise.  Instead she walked to a certain tent, and opened the flap, pointing to the interior.copyright protection21PENANAHvHEFl19XY

Father and I remained cautious, but the boy followed her, and went inside.copyright protection21PENANAyHNPtt0GvX

It was a long moment, but the elderly hoblin matron held the flap, unmoving.copyright protection21PENANAUIqUG8idS6

The boy had lifted one body out.  It was another Soryn softscale.  A female.  She had clearly been at the mercy of these vile creatures for some time.  She had the pall of death on her face, yet he carried her gently.copyright protection21PENANAAAChfiDgrA

The boy looked at Isseth and nodded his head into the tent.  Father went over and he too entered the tent, before exiting with another of the women.  copyright protection21PENANAe0i2QMwQs1

The hoblin matron let the flap drop, and prostrate herself.  Was she offering her life? Or begging us to leave, having come for the soryn females?  Did she misunderstand?copyright protection21PENANANmJegpmzDf

Eyes peeked out from the tents and lean-tos.  The elderly, and those who did not fight, or could not yet fight.copyright protection21PENANAGdQju5B8m3

The only good goblin was a dead goblin.copyright protection21PENANAIA31DTN9Kf

"Come.  We go."copyright protection21PENANAayBTNSjasW

Father spoke to me, it was necessary, because only I did not understand.copyright protection21PENANAp99gsEl3MH

They had recovered two living people, and that was the matron's trade.  Life for life.  Those two already understood it.copyright protection21PENANA7viawV4j4P

I was too prepared to kill the rest here.copyright protection21PENANAyeoa8b3rlw

Was that why my blades didn't lift?copyright protection21PENANAoLFx17bnbY

Did even Sset find that compromise acceptable?copyright protection21PENANA4itnsZixjn

I would think to meditate on this at a later time.  I followed the two as they exited the stronghold.copyright protection21PENANAmRCK2KW6ch

We traveled back through the woods, and eventually returned to the caravan which we traveled with.copyright protection21PENANACA2h74pjrA

Isseth and I preferred to travel apart, but we were known.  He and the Boy brought the women carefully to a certain wagon, and two women rushed over to tend to them, another human and a Ylf.copyright protection21PENANAhvSLSlKbS3

The wagonmaster pulled the two heroes aside alongside his fellow Warden brothers and two other soryn men to talk.copyright protection21PENANAyfVa0YVW47

I on the other hand decided I was quite done, and so I returned to the dirt bridge where I could wash off some of the foul blood and filth that defiled my beautiful scales.copyright protection21PENANAdHHgYPko9L

Hmmph.copyright protection21PENANAYrgQc9bXl4

Though, I was impressed by the softscale boy.copyright protection21PENANA1TjX4kVZg0

But only a little.copyright protection21PENANA6tHOKGE44N

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