Re: [WAR X] WAR X RP - The Circle of Life and Death [RP]
En route to Itum(from Parasanti)
Affected RPers: None
After leaving Parasanti, Belcarth and Jayde had been walking through Endla Forest. Belcarth had almost expected to run into the mages from earlier that day, and part of him wanted to, so that he could warn them, but the forest had so far been eventless. So far they had traveled through the forest, partly because it was less crowded, partly because it was faster, but Belcarth's true reason was that he enjoyed walking where there was no path. He had never gotten lost in any forest, and he always knew more or less which direction he was heading. At first, they had walked south-east, from Parasanti, towards the crosroad that was due north of Mancia. From there they had followed the road as it went south, following the coast. When they were almost due east of Mancia, they decided to again go through the forest, avoiding the longer route that went half-way down the penninsula and back again, thus going around the forest.
There was a path to follow, it was nowhere as big, nor as high quality as the main road, but enough trees had been removed, and enough people traveled there to distinguish it from the surrounding forest. This road was mainly used by hunters, people who were in a rush and not afraid to get ambushed along the way, or in most cases, people with a questionable reputation, who prefered the privacy that the large trees provided, compared to the more open main road.
They had not stopped very long for rest, and they had eaten while walking, both of which contributed to a good speed. And adding the fast pace and the shortcuts to that, they had probably gotten almost twice as long as regular travelers, and they weren't much more tired than regular travelers either, not yet at least.
As was his habit, Belcarth kept his mind open, scanning the area for other humans, and so far they had been able to keep out of trouble. There had been an unusual amount of Circle Knights along the way, and they appeared to be of two kinds. Some of them were just as bored and lazy as scoutingparties usually are, because the majority of the time they never run into anything interesting. The other part though, they were more active, and almost everyone in this category were moving west. Their presence worried Belcarth, though avoiding them had not been an issue.
While pondering over the reason for this increase in activity, his thoughts were interrupted once more by a group of knights, this time coming from the west, behind them. As he had done the previous times they had been nearby, he moved to the side of the road, and as he headed towards the trees, he suddenly froze. He had sensed a familiar mind among the knights, and a horrible feeling began to manifest itself. Suddenly realizing that a dozen people were heading his way, and that he was fully visible from the road, he swiftly moved into the woods, though not so far that he wouldn't see the road.
After what seemed like eternity, though in reality couldn't have been more than two or three minutes, a party of eleven knights and a civilian appeared on the road. The group was moving quite fast, though other than the unusual speed, only one thing distinguished them from a regular scouting party. The civilian was an unconscious young woman with her legs tied together and her arms tied behind her back. She was lying face down, resting uncomfortably over the shoulders of an Arcanine, in front of the knight who commanded the mount. She was, without a doubt, a prisoner. The knights prefered the term temporarily arrested, but Belcarth knew better. The only thing that was temporary was the prisoner's life, something that was rectified with torture to the brink of death, followed by execution. The normal procedure was hanging or decapitation, though defenestration was a favourite of many knights, and they were infamous for their creativity within the field. To make matters worse, Belcarth not only knew what her fate would be, he knew the woman.
Without thinking, he began charging an Aura Sphere, and he was just about to throw it when he was stopped by a firm but gentle paw that held his arm back. Slowly the sphere dissipated, as Belcarth took a deep breath and turned around to see Jayde looking at him.
"Now is not a good time." Was all she said.
Belcarth, too furious to answer, only nodded as he started walking, following the knights but without leaving the forest.
While the knights were moving faster than Belcarth and Jayde, their minds never dissappeared from Belcarth's mind scanning. Just as Belcarth was about to pick up the pace to ensure that they wouldn't get too far ahead, they seemed to have stopped. Carefully, belcarth continued towards the knights, then hid behind a tree not far from them. A quick peak revealed two knights arguing over a map, one of them clearly the leader of the group.
"This is where we are, and this is where we are heading." The leader said, pointing at the map. "We will arrive in Itum by nightfall."
"I'm telling you, sir, I know this forest like the back of my hand. We haven't made it past this point yet." The other knight pointed at the map. "I'd recognize that place in my sleep."
"You are both wrong." A third knight entered the discussion. "I was a hunter in this forest before I joined the order. We have made it past this point," he said to the other knight, "but we haven't made it as far as you think we have, sir."
"Enough." The leader said, then turned to the first knight. "You, take a knight with you and scout north." He then looked at the second knight, "And you, take another knight and scout south. See if you can find any landmarks that prove either of your claims."
Both of the knights looked disappointed, as they realized that they had just volunteered for extra work. They did as they were ordered though, and soon two knights headed in each direction.
Since Belcarth and his companion was almost due north of the knights, they backed off into the forest, and Belcarth looked at the surroundings.
"We will hide behind those trees," Belcarth pointed at two trees on opposite sides of what could resemble a small path, barely visible. "wait for my signal."
Jayde weren't fond of killing people, though she had little compassion for circle knights. Belcarth rarely resorted to killing as a first choice of confronting people, but someone who had hurt him or his friends, knights even more so, could start counting their remaining time in this life.
Both of them were now standing hidden, on opposite sides of the most likely path the knights would choose. As they stood there, Belcarth looked at Jayde.
"3" Belcarth unsheathed a knife, barely making a sound. The knights were getting closer.
"2" He readied the knife in his hand. The knghts walked past them, but not between them. Belcarth was now placed between the knights and Jayde.
"1" He threw the knife at the closest target, hiting the side of his neck.
As one man, both Belcarth and Jayde leaped from their hiding spots. Belcarth pulled out another knife as he jumped, moving towards the second knight. With the dagger in his left hand, and his right hand positioned over the knight's mouth and chin, it didn't take long to silently finish him off. Jayde had grabbed the first knight, preventing him from falling down and making a noise. As the two slowly lowered their burdens to the ground, Belcarth studied the two. Neither one had a helmet, nor plate armor. They only wore chainmail, which indicated that they were most likely low ranking knights, or even knights-in-training.
With the bodies on the ground, Belcarth and his companion returned to their former hidning place, and they noticed that the knights had begun making a temporary camp. Considering the fire in the middle, and the cooking equipment next to it, they must have decided that they may as well eat if they were just going to wait there.
The prisoner, still unconscious, had been tied up at the nearest three, and luck seemed to smile at Belcarth today as the tree was on the northern side of the path. Next to the prisoner, there was a large burlap sac that had been carelessly tossed on the ground, and Belcarth could've sworn that for a moment the sac had been moving.
"You there," the knight in charge said, pointing at a knight, "watch the girl. She's your responsibility, and Imos isn't known for his kindness to those who fail him." The other knight muttered something, but did as he was told.
Belcarth clenched his fists at the name Imos, and cursed as the guard sat down on a rock, leaning towards a tree only a few meters away from the woman. As he considered how to deal with the guard, he began moving closer to the prisoner, but stay hidden behind the trees. He pulled out a dagger, and just as he was about to begin severing the rope, the rope itself shifted slightly.
"Well, well, look who is awake," the guard said, and turned his head towards the camp. Whatever he had meant to say never got out though, as he fell with a dull thud and a metallic rustle, leaning towards the tree in a very unnatural, not to say awkward position, with a knife in his throat. Belcarth held his breath for one, two, three seconds. The dead knight seemed to be still, and once again Belcarth thanked his lucky star, for it was nothing short of a miracle that the knight hadn't fallen to the ground.
"Stay still and stay quiet if you want to live." Belcarth said, hoping that the woman was awake enough to hear him.
"Belcarth, is that you?" Said the familiar voice.
"Ailith, will you for once shut up and do as I tell you?" Belcarth replied as he pulled out another knife and began sawing off the ropes.
He was almost certain that she had been about to reply again, but had realized that getting away was more important than arguing.
"Jayde, when I go around the tree to help Ailith, you grab the bag." Belcarth told his companion. Whatever was in that bag was important enough for the knights to carry around.
"Be careful." She replied, just as the last rope was severed.
Belcarth waited until one of the knights announced that the food was ready, diverting the attention from the prisoner. Since Ailith had her legs and arms tied together, he slowly moved around the tree, and lifted her up, carrying her over the shoulder, then moving back into the forest. He could've let her walk, but the time it would take to untie her, might be the only time the knights needed to spot them. When they had gotten a small distance from the camp, Ailith apparently assumed it was safe to talk.
"Oh, how romantic. The hero saving the young damsel in distress from the evil knights." She described the situation, and Belcarth barely managed to resist the urge to just drop her right where he stood.
As they arrived where the two knights had been slain, Belcarth let go of Ailith, untied her arms, and left her to untie her legs. Meanwhile, Jayde had placed the sac on the ground, and Belcarth decided to open it. And in the bag he found a pair of eyes, frightened and surprised. Said eyes belonged to the Growlithe that Belcarth had rescued once before, this time he had been tied up and muzzled. Fury surfaced within Belcarth as he saw how the knights had treated the canine, and he quickly released the bonds they had forced on him.
As he was done, he turned around and adressed the others. "Okey, here's the plan. It won't take long for the knights to notice that you are missing, so when I tell you to run, you will run and don't look back. I will deal with anyone who follows. No buts." He looked at Ailith when he added the last part.
"But..." She began, with a worried look on her face.
"No. I owe your father too much to put you in harms way in a battle that really isn't any of your business." Belcarth said.
"None of my business? They arrested me!" She replied.
"And why was that? What was the reason for them to arrest you?" Belcarth said, though an idea had already formed in his head. His friend had been arrested on the orders of his old enemy, while the knights are looking for something or someone in particular in the area around Parasanti, these were a bit too coincidental for his taste.
"They arrested me because..." She hesitated for a second before continuing, her voice lowered to a whisper, "Because I know a mage."
"Half of Aria knows a mage or two, what is so different about this one?" Belcarth pressed on, while she clearly didn't want to talk about it.
"The mage is...They asked for the mage by name..." Tears began forming in her eyes. "They are looking for you, it's you they are looking for." The tears began to run down her cheeks.
Now, now. There is no need to cry." Belcarth said, as he walked up to her and wiped away her tears. "They have been hunting me for 5 years, and I still haven't been caught. There is no need to worry." He did his best to comfort her, though he had not been this worried for a long time. Going after him personally was one thing, but going after his friends and family was a completely different matter.
After a moment of silence, Belcarth turned towards his trusted Lucario.
"You are going with them. There's no other way for her to know when it's safe to stop running." He said out loud, for everyone to hear.
"I'm not leaving you, and you know that." She replied in her mind.
Yes you are, partly because I need you to keep them safe, and partly because I will need you a lot more afterwards, possibly more than in the past. He replied in the same fashion.
Jayde stared at him, You're not going to...Not here...Not alone...Right? She looked like she had seen a ghost.
Not if we can get some distance between us and them, but I will if I have to. But I'm better at controlling it now, and containing it. You know that. She didn't look convinced, but he continued out loud, "So, let's all get going before..."
Before he could finish, he was interrupted by a loud crash and a lot of shouting from the camp. The dead knight had fallen, and it didn't take a genious to understand what that meant.
Last edited by Kamikaze; 07-31-2011 at 07:42 PM.
Reason: Forgot the header. =P