14 An Elven Pledge

Chapter 2

An Elven Pledge.

The Blood Elf in the middle of the semi-circle stood. He was a old man with long dull red hair. “I am Carris, High Sentinel of the Blood Elf army, Guardian of Silvermoon and Protector of the Sunwell.” He looked down at us, eye’s settling on Daemon, “I am led to believe that you are Dameon, descendant of Alex the First and heir to the throne of Ezona? Do you have proof of this claim?”

Dameon stepped forward and ripping the sleeve from his right arm raised it above his head. At the same moment the sun rose and the light flowed through the high windows of the Basilica. As the sun struck Dameon’s arm the golden dragon glowed. The dragon seemed to shudder, two emerald eyes opened, with a rustling of scales the golden wings flapped once and it shifted slightly before falling back into its dormant slumber. The Blood Elf council was stunned into silence.

With a deep sigh Carris sat, “We are left in no doubt now. You are truly the rightful prince of Ezona.” He bowed his head, “I must apologize for your somewhat frosty reception but we had received word from Tel’ Duskstarks that a group of villains were impersonating the prince and a few of his companions. Can you explain this?”

Alex stepped forward and bowed, “I believe I am to blame for that. I don’t know who ordered it but some of the Mind Benders took on my appearance and played havoc with the Ki’miri council and the Queen trying to turn them against me.”

“To what purpose?” Carris asked confused.

“I believe the reason was to remove our support from the Dameon. As you know the Ki’miri have always been the closest supports of the Humans of Valhall.” Alex explained.

“That’s true” Carris agreed. After consulting a few notes on his desk he looked up, “Can you explain why we found you in company of the Wood Elf princess?”

“The Princess?” Dameon exclaimed in surprise.

“Oh no,” Luka hid her face in her hands.

“We weren’t aware she was the Wood Elf Princess.” Brandon said. “She was sneaking through the tree’s spying on us for about an hour before we had pinpointed her location.”

“I see. So you had no way of knowing who she was?”

We all shook our heads.

Carris nodded then dismissed as a internal Wood Elf matter, “Can you tell me why you came to Silvermoon?”

Brandon gestured for Dameon to answer, “You want to take this one?” Dameon nodded and stepped forward.

“We came hoping to seek an audience with the King and propose the formation of an Alliance with the Blood Elves.”

“That won’t be possible until we have some reading on the Kings position”.

“Reading on the King’s position?” Catarina asked.

Carris nodded but it was Star that answered, “We have had Sky Hawk Rider’s[1] out for the past few weeks trying to pinpoint…” she was suddenly interrupted as the large double doors at the end of the Basilica banged open. The two Sentinel’s inside spun their double bladed staffs around to block the door. After a swift whispered conference one of the Sentinel’s withdrew his staff and approached Carris

“The Sky Hawk patrol from Mor’gond has returned”.

Carris paled at the name, “Send them in.”

The Sentinel turned and nodded to his companion at the door. He retracted his staff and held open the door as a patrol of five Sky Hawk’s entered, three of them supporting a fourth who was badly wounded. They came to a stop beside us and addressed the Blood Elf council at large.

“The Mor’gond troll mound is abandoned. We followed their tracks east before we lost sight of them as they entered the Bladeleaf Forest.”

“Bladeleaf Forest?” Cassius asked in an undertone, frowning.

“Amourshear Woods,” Alex whispered at the same time Dameon replied with “Deathknight Forest.”

Carris glared at us, discouraging further comment.

“We circled around until we saw their tracks on their north side but it seemed that they had joined forces with the Satyrs.”

“Satyrs?” Several of the Blood Elf’s came to their feet. “But why?”, “To what purpose?”, “Is Silvermoon under attack?”

The questions continued to come until Carris rose to his feet. “QUIET.” The ensuing silence was almost deafening. “Did you find out why they have supposedly joined forces?”

The wounded Sky Hawk pushed himself forward, “They have the King.”

The council started talking again but the doors interrupted them as they banged open again. The Sentinel’s barded the way again but lowered their blades as Carris waved the newcomers forward.

Another division of nine Sky Hawks moved forward and dropped to one knee. “Sky Hawk patrol from Labyrinth Haunt reporting. The Minotaur’s have the King. They have joined forces with the Troll’s of Mor’gond and the Satyr’s of Bladeleaf Forest.”

Carris turned away from us, “This is indeed disturbing news.” He turned around and sent the four Sky Hawks with their wounded friend off to the infirmary, the other nine to rest and recall the other patrols. Finally he turned to us and firmly explained that the council must discuss this new development and that we were to be returned to the guesthouse. We complied and to our surprise Star came with us.

“Aren’t you allowed in the council?” Cassius asked as we walked back to the guesthouse.

Star shook her head, “It’s only for Blood Elves.”

“Is there a training field anywhere around here?” Dameon asked coming up beside her, “if I go any longer without practice I’ll go rusty.”

From ahead of them I snorted, “You once went three weeks without practice in Valhall.”

“Actually I was doing practice every night outside the back of the hideout.”

I went to reply but Star interrupted, “You can’t as yet use the public training ground’s but another one is located behind the guesthouse.”

“Right, Thanks” Dameon said, “You want to spar Cassius?”

Cassius nodded as we came within sight of the guesthouse they dodged ahead and collected the practice swords that Alex had brought from Tel’ Duskstark, Dameon selected a two handed broadsword while Cassius selected two one-handed swords. They set off towards the practice field and after a minute Hawkeye muttered something about watching for trouble and set off after them.

The rest of us returned to the guesthouse to rest up and relax. Alex, Luka and I restarted our game of Divide and Conquer 2, Catarina returned to her scrying, Brandon and Star discussed the possible alliance between the Minotaur’s, the Satyr’s and the Troll’s.

“What do you think of this new alliance?” Alex asked mounting a three-pronged attack on my defences.

“No idea,” I answered, pulling troops of the sentry line on Luka’s side to reinforce my defence against Alex.

Luka regrouped her forces and lunched a two-pronged attack on both of our forces. “If most of the other half-human races have banded together we need to make sure the Tauren’s haven’t joined them as well.”

“They haven’t,” Catarina spoke up suddenly from her position at the side of the room. “The Tauren’s have just rejected a meeting with the Mind-Benders.”

‘What wrong?” Star asked. She and Brandon had halted their conversation when Catarina spoke.

Catarina shrugged, “Don’t know but they said something about internal matters.”

“Internal troubles for the Tauren’s could spell disaster for the other races if they join one side or the other.” I commented, looking up from the game. Alex took full advantage of my distraction to launch a major attack, only to realise he had misread my defences and was forced into a shooting gallery. He quickly withdrew. “If we could contract their help it wouldmake a huge difference to the final battle.”

“Final Battle,” Luka and Alex asked at the same time.

I nodded, “It was a dream Dameon had, a battlefield with his banner over one side and his brother’s over the other. Ask Dameon about it when he comes back in.”

Luka drew breath to ask something but was interrupted by shouts of surprise, the clash of weapons and bellows of pain from somewhere behind the house.

“The training field!” Star exclaimed and dashed out the door the rest of us a few steps behind. The training field was a mess of torn up targets, grass and blood. About fifteen Satyr’s and six Troll’s were scattered around all encased in ice. Hawkeye was scanning the horizon through the sights of her crossbow. Dameon was picking himself off the ground. One arm was hanging limp and half his face was covered with blood.

“What happened?” Catarina asked moving forward to support Dameon.

“And where’s Cassius?” Star added.

“They took Cassius,” Dameon groaned, “Satyr’s and Troll’s. They kidnapped him. They thought he was me.”

[1] Sky Hawk Rider’s are Elves that have trained and bonded with a flying mount unique to their race. The Blood Elves ride Sky Hawks, giant half dragon, half wasp like creatures. The High Elves enlist the help of the ancient Dragon’s and only few are chosen as riders. The Wood Elves have bonded with the Great Eagles of the Thistlewood Forest Eyries.


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