Broken Traditions, Chapter 3

Penicorn sits by Lost, eyes focusing on the south, “We are attracting attention.” Lost nods, “What did you expect, she is gathering a rather large force. King Isital thinking is that this force is the only one the Queen has in the valley.” Penicorn remembers , Lost’s apprentice is in the south marshaling forces for defense of the families of the Elven folks in Rtakivev. Penicorn quietly says, “You keep referring to her as the Queen.” Lost doesn’t answer , for a time then a voice speaks softly , “I have no care for title , especially among friends.” Penicorn turns to face , the young Queen Alisa, she smiles a bit, “Lost I wish your counsel on a subject.”

Lost turns , “Always Alisa , what can I do for you?” Queen Alisa normally asks Rastayn but he was unsure on this subject, so Alisa chose Lost, she asks, “A rather large force of knights are moving towards Rtakivev.” Lost watches, as she sits down on a rock, “The force at Rtakivev , is already impressive , and I don’t believe that our forces will be enough there. With this no group coming….” She trails off , watching him, Lost asks, “You want to know if its smart to hit the new group coming?” Penicorn watches him, as he says , “It would be a good idea , you have something in mind?”

Rastayn appears, as he speaks up, “She wants you, and I , to head to meet this group with half the force. I advised against that many..” Lost looks at Queen Alisa , “We need maybe twenty or so Elven Rangers, the rest are going to be needed in Rtakivev.” Queen Alisa smiles, “You may pick whomever you want to come with you…”

A small humanoid with a dog like head, a long snake like tail turns to the group behind it, several dozen creatures , varies shapes and sizes , they watch the encampment, after Sevenivth touch of madness , the creatures regained their free will , and after nearly two hundreds of enslavement , they wanted to remain free.

The small humanoid with a dog like head is a Kobold, he was taunted and tormented about how his entire species was wiped out , as if they were nothing more than insects. He was the smartest of the group, so where he went the others followed , including two giant spiders, more than he has finger of Giant Scorpion, two blaze hounds , more Demonette then he had fingers or toes.

The Demonette shadowy demons, with long talon like fingers , deep bluish , or black skin, small spins, swept back horns and goat like legs, each standing roughly three feet tall to four and half feet tall, desperately want food.

The Kobold had been following the “Seraph” a term the Kobolds used for godlings for they had seen the creature speak with animals, use great magic and kill “the big scary thing of more deaths than he had toes and fingers.” Now the “Seraph” was heading south , so they decided to follow, for surely the “Seraph” could tell them what in the world is going on.

The village name is simply Gammo, sits in mountain side cliff, a mining town, with a high shelf that hold a huge ice cap. Here the commander , Lord Vandel, has decided to setup camp for the week. The soldiers grow restless , as Lord Vandel ensure that every ounce of ore from the drained from the mines nearby.

Lost watches as the Elven Ranger appears , “Sir , they are encamp there , it seems that they have the villagers , and prisoners , working the mines. And sir…” Lost answers for him, “I know we are being followed we have been for some time they don’t pose any kinda of danger. Leave them to me.” The Elven Ranger turns away, Rastayn watches Lost, “You should have been priest , Lost , you find and care for more strays than anyone I have met.” Lost smiles to himself.

In what would be nothing more than yapping to a stranger , Lost greets the Kobold leader, in the Kobold’s tongue, a series of barks, yaps, growls. The Kobold , begins , “Great Seraph, me be humble servant, me grateful that the ‘enchanter with pointy ears’, is gone. Me want to follow you.” Lost answers, “I am as mortal as you , friend , your freedom should be a valued thing. It is something that entire countries fight over. You are welcome to travel with us , until you can decide what you wish to do with your life.”

Kobold went back to the troop , giving the others in his troop what Lost had told , ‘shiny things, food, warmth, protection for nothing more than a peace’ Kobold knew they follow this Lost, for they had nowhere else to go and the promise of food was more than enough to get the others to join them.

“What is the matter!” The soldier’s name is Etas Wnidierel, the only reason he is here, because of he hurt a local peasant girl, it wasn’t the fact that he had hurt the girl. It was the fear that he would do so to a noble’s daughter, or someone of importance. So they sent him to the army, and Etas excelled in cruelly like he was born for it.

Etas was put in charge of the miners, he would do things to them, and their family that made even the darkest soul in this outfit , turn away. Etas look at the man, again and demand, “What is the matter!”

The old miner , had not slept for week, he had taken as much as he could so he drove a pick though foot, and broke both his hands. Etas smiled at the self inflicted wounds, “Did you do this to yourself?” The old miner starts to speak , Etas knocks him down with a back handed punch, he starts forward, when a figure steps out of the darkness.

Lost lifts his hand, Etas attempts to scream , but as Lost finish the Distort spell , Etas’s voice ceases in his throat , and his body is mangled , and torn apart. Etas slumps over, Lost walks past him, the Kobold and two Demonettes drag him away. Etas suffers for hours , as his body slow shut downs from being exposed to time magic, it doesn’t help that one of the Demonette bash Etas with a rock while watching the prisoners.

The other soldiers five total , watch as Lost steps into the mine large open area where ore is piled, tools stored , and lodging are. In a quick look , Lost decides who is a threat, he waits for them to draw their weapons , they rush in as one , Lost draws out two wakizashi, holding them so the blade point down. As the first of the soldiers reaches , Lost upper cuts his , the wakizashi blade slicing him from thigh to throat leaving a gaping wound. Then Lost is meeting second soldier, Lost’s blades flash cross the solider’s chest just above his belly , ripping him asunder.

Lost steps away from a badly made thrust , then avoids a wild slash, Lost accordingly counters with thrust of his own, embedding his wakizashi hilt deep into the soldier’s chest. Lost spins, and stabs the other soldier in the back, as that soldier attempts to another thrust.

‘Dear god , dear god , how is he moving so fast!?!’ His name is Tarexas, no given common name, he is murderer , he is a criminal , you name it he has done it , his reason for being here, is simple , after brutally disfiguring a noble’s daughters , twins, he ran. He manage to get into a good outfit , now, he struggles with the crossbow , wheel and crank.

Suddenly something jumps on his back, he spins, dropping the crossbow, reaching for his dagger , something grabs his hair , claws dig into back and arms, his feet are suddenly not responding to his screams.

Lost watches the final soldier being dragged down by four Demonettes, miners begin to appear, they too watch. Lost greets them, “Its about to get really busy in town, and these men don’t seem know how to treat their host, I suggest you exit the mine and follow the Elven Rangers to safety.”

“Sire. Wake please….” Lord Vandel likes at least fourteen hours of sleep , or he gets unpleasant, the fat Lord rolls over to grab the messenger’s tunic , “WHAT!” He bellows. The messenger , states, “The miners and villagers have left their imprisonment. Lord Vandel , shrugs, “Round up a few soldiers…” The messenger interrupt the Lord, “There are men missing sir , and we don’t know where every man is, where they sleep or …” Lord Vandel rolls out of bed , and begins to dress.

An arrows punches through his chainmail, he grabs the arrow, as another one punches through his upper chest. The soldier is barely sixteen, and in last few seconds of his life, he regrets so much. His friends , stir into action , dragging his body into the stone building.

The night air is alive with the sound of arrows , screams, and empty threats. Lord Vandel listens from the large house he has taken over, his personal bodyguard , watch him. Lord Vandel, tosses the messenger into the streets , the messenger is struck down by an arrow.

“Sir , they are coming,” Rastayn closes his eyes , saying only “Ok, thank you , be sure to tell your men to be very careful of friendly fire.”

Lord Vandel is a good leader, a coward , and overweight slime, in a short order , he has gotta the bulk of his soldiers to take up a position, where snipers can’t reach, and they are in a good spot for a fight. He hears them coming..

A company of Elven knights on dragon horses , races down the Lord Vandel and his men, he gives the order , and flask of oil are tossed into the oncoming forces , then arrows, bolts and even sling bullets are lit up , and fired into the group. The fire blazes up , screams break the night, Lord Vandel smiles , then suddenly..

Captain Cort Njeghise was close by when he was told to come quickly , that the villagers had taken up arms against the Isital soldiers, Lord Vandel was suppose to be gone weeks ago. They had charged the town in hopes to scatter the rebels, but trap in the middle of a fire , smoke, then a dragon horse kicks him, he slumps, the last thoughts he has are of his girlfriend, wife and daughter.

In the chaos , Lost appears the stunned archers , are the first to go, they drop quickly, as Lost , cuts through them, with his two handed katana , they don’t even scream. The sound of their weapons dropping to the ground, doesn’t raise alarm, either does their screams, for all sounds mingle into.

Lost moves through their ranks , his blade cutting them, down, he gives a few a chance to draw steel but for the most part its simply a slaughter. The few who do manage to fight back , do so out of training and not thought.

Lord Vandel’s watches the stranger, and raises the alarm, men begin to response. The figure, moves through them, spinning , slashing, thrusting , dropping his men as if they were puppets.

Wny Masos drops his weapon, he had killed a old woman simply because he could. He had tossed the oil into the men, he had been cheering , but now he was numb. His mind was trying to find some reason some excuse to rationalize this. The figure beyond is moving faster than Masos’s eyes can follow, but the bodies keep dropping.

Lost stops , holding the two handed katana , at his side, drenched in blood, around him Elven soldiers are finishing off soldiers. Then Lost lowers his sword , searching for the commander, and finds him, crosses to him, and strikes him down as the man draws his sword.

“Its over.” The Elven soldiers stop , watching Lost , as he continues , “Take the rest as prisoners, enough death for now.” The remaining Isital soldiers drop their weapons, out of the seven hundred soldiers , in town , less than three hundred had survived.

“Sir? I am sorry to bother you, but one of the miners wants to speak to you.” Lost gets out of his cot , and comes to the tent entrance. The miner an old man of sixty or so , greets Lost, before saying, “We are grateful for you helping and everything but we would like to return home.” Lost can understand, but tells the miner, “There will be more troops soon, they will blame you and your people. We can’t stay and defend you. There is a village north of here , they have agreed to help you until the war is over or until its safe to return home.”

Ceresti shifts in her saddle , her giant Lizard, restlessly tosses it head, they had enter the forest, and suddenly Ceresti couldn’t sense any sort of life , beast or bird. She watches the knight march tirelessly to the Elven hiding place.

His name is Ahaascen, a schooled man, bodyguard to Ceresti since he was sixteen, he knows the signs, restlessness , sweating, twisting her hair in her fingers.. All signs of trouble. He scans the forest , his mount , begins to pull on the reins, he looks at Ceresti , the female mage, comments, “They know something is wrong.”

Ceresti , watches the first shadows move , then another , before she give a warning , arrows stream through the night air , the commanders, and officers are knocked from their mounts. Arrows rain from both sides of the forest , some of the cavalry break from the column to give chase.

Ahaascen barks at the soldiers, “Don’t chase them, dismount , ” Then another commander is screaming “Shell! Shell!” Ceresti quietly dismounts, forming the spell “Acid Bomb” on her lips , as the soldiers move into formation, shields overlapping each other.

Eight cavalry knights , with short bows , charge after three fleeing Elven Ranger, from the darkness , a “Magic Missile” rockets from nowhere, exploding on contact with the lead ridder. The other riders, fight for control of their mounts, as another spell “Iron ball” is cast , causing a massive ball of iron to rip from the ground , then rush into the center left ridder.

In a flash , a figure is moving between the ridders, a spear blade slashes then jabs another ridder from its mount. The cavalry grab for their long swords, but the figure merely extends a hand , knights and ridders alike are thrown into the darkness.

The knight gets to his feet , shaken he wrestles his battle axe from his mount body, he looks for his friends , but in the darkness , and chaos he can’t find them. A noise causes him to turn, a sharp pain in his belly drops him, then a blow across his back, he looks up into the face of a beautiful girl, spinning a long spear. Then he feels the blade of the spear prick him, he coughs once then slumps over.

She watches , the darkness, the words of a healing spell forms on her lips, she turns to the three knights with her. When she looks back , a figure , a girl , wearing leather jacket and gather , with a shield and spear, stands but a few feet from. The female knight, a former nun, condemn to death for daring to learning magic to aid in the healing of sick.

She closes her eyes, hoping for a quick end , but it doesn’t come, she hears Sara’s voice, “Drop your arms , girl , I will not kill a priest.” the female knight, opens her eyes, she whispers, “Bless you.” Sara speaks softly, “Don’t make me regret this…” The female knight , finishes the healing spells , its too late for one of the knights , but she manages to save the other two.

Ceresti senses the healing spell, she senses another mage , somewhere in the darkness. She half turns to inspect the soldiers , only twenty or so are lost , most of them are the cavalry. Ahaascen was injured in the attack, an arrow tipped with head she had never seen, had ruin a few of the shields of the knights, causing injury.

Ahaascen curses , “Damn those bloody fairies, what kinda of cruel magic is this?” Ceresti inspects the wound , smiles a bit to herself , “It’s a mantra spell , best keep it covered.” Ahaascen curses, “Its glowing!” Ceresti notices a lot of the wounded are glowing, she smiles to her , a brilliant tactic.

For hours , the soldiers sat with their shields covering themselves, there was very little movement by whatever force that had struck them. Ceresti heard from a commander , that thirty men were unaccounted for, a hundred or so men had been badly wounded, but the commander was concern about the spells used against them.

Ceresti went down the line inspecting the wounds, and some of the spell used against the groups, mostly mantra spells , so the group attacking them had a beginning wizard or someone’s apprentice. But Ceresti can’t think of any beginning wizard nor an apprentice being able to mask an entire group’s life force , nor able to mask the impression left after a spell has been cast.

For the first half of the day , the column marched on , moving slowly , Sara and Reti , flanked by Reria and a dozen Elven Rangers , watches them move. Reti comments, “Barely scratched them,” Sara nods , her attention focuses on the mage in the group, ‘why do I always end up watching her, is she dangerous? Maybe I knew her?…’ Reria whispers, “If I wanted to hurt them badly I surely would take out the chuck wagons.” Reti nods, “That is a good idea its heavily defended though, we would had to risk a lot to get at it.” Sara explains softly , “See those plates Reria?” Reria watches the wagon and finds the large copper plates hidden under a canvas covers, Sara continues, “those protect the wagon from damage , from fire , magic , and other forces. One of those wagons could stand off an attack by most kinds of raids. When the land beyond this valley was wilderness , there were raids by barbarians, wild men and monsters, they refined the way wagons were built. From the wheels to the body , even the drivers…” Sara pauses, “Although…”

The day had been along one, Ceresti had to reveal more of her power than she liked , as several of the men found one of the spells used on them was Musk of the Skunk , and Hunger, the spells were vaguely altered , and more powerful than they should have been. Ceresti mind would be touched from time to time, a spell she had cast in her youth , but she can’t remember the reason.

A few hours before dusk the commanders order a break , Ahaascen set about making the encampment safe, while others vanished to find wood , and hunt fresh meat. The wagons were used to shore up one side, while the rest of the camp was pressed into a big rock formation, that housed a pool of cool water , that tasted like the sweet berries that grew at the edge of the shore.

Reti watches Sara, “You sure you want to go alone?” Sara smiles, “Not really but if I make mistake or something happens the Pendragon need you to carry out the plan..” Reria appears from the edge of the woods, “May I come… I feel that I haven’t contributed as much as everyone.” Sara and Reti smile, as Reti says , “I have never seen a human shoot a bow as well nor as fast as you, Reria. You have done more than your share and have done as we have when it was needed.” Reria lowers her head, “I wish to go though.” Sara nods , “Ok, it was your plan.”

Sara was impressed the young thief , she was better skilled at stealth than one would think. Several times, Reria was merely a second shadow , moving as if a wraith. Through the woods the two slipped, Reria was very aware at even though they pass within inches of a crickets, rabbits , and other small animals that they didn’t stir. She become aware that Sara was ghost barely touching the earth , as they passed over the earth , they left no trace.

Then they came to the edge of the forest , the soldiers had cleared a space of twenty yards , for a clearing, watchfires danced and swirl in the cool breeze. Sara in a low whisper , softly “Polymorph”, in an instant both Sara and Reria turn into ferrets.

The guard steps over the ferrets that scurry pass him, he looks around then takes out a bottle of whisky and take a long pull at the bottle neck, then warms himself , and staring into the fire.

Reria follows after Sara , finding that her new form allows her to hear better and catch the scents of varies things. Then Sara vanishes behind a group of tents, Reria follows and the spell duration ends , Sara smiles at her, then points at the wagons to the west.

The pair slip through the tents , the voices and laughter of the soldiers lift out and carry on the wind. The smell of food cooking and whisky hangs in the air. As they pass a tent , Reria slows , and Sara watches her , Reria looks at the group of younger individuals. In a barely audible whisper “What are kids doing here?” Sara watches her before answering , “Entertainment, they are used for servants, sex, poker chips , cock fights… entertainment , they are bought or taken from villages on the way to a siege.” Reria whispers , “that is sick.”

Ceresti doesn’t see them, nor does Ahaascen, and his men, they don’t trip any of the magical traps, the wards or even appear. But the spell that tugged on Ceresti’s mind , yanks now , her head swims with tugs , thoughts memories and dreams. She breathes to Ahaascen , “Someone is here.”

Ahaascen watches the darkness, he hates fighting magic users , especially Elven ones, they alter spells , so that the damage , pain or defeat lingers. He curses them silently , gives the tug on the archer’s arm , that is the signal to be ready.

The two that step from the shadows are not what Ahaascen , nor Ceresti , expected, humans, wearing the Princess’s symbol, humans capable of masking their very approach and disarming her wards. She grows angry , what madness is this ‘That girl look like me , when I was child.’ Ahaascen notices the same, he looks at Ceresti then to the girl. He shrugs , ‘doesn’t matter , there is always time for answers later.’

Ceresti whispers a spell , that only a handful know , “Haste” Ahaascen is sped up , he moves from the darkness in blur , but the girl is moving faster , Ceresti , growls in her throat , “Fast” , Ahaascen entire fighting style speeds up , but the girl is still faster , her spear pierces Ahaascen shoulder then tears through his chest , jab , and slashes , cutting Ahaascen to ribbons.

Ahaascen struggles to make it blade connect , he curses the girl , she is hasted also well, too fast for the archers. He feels the round end of the spear smash his nose , blinding him , his entire body is hurting. He is vaguely aware of his blows tearing clothing , he hears the sound of his broad bastard sword , striking a shield.

Ceresti whispers , “Shock Sphere” a ball of crackling energy launches into both Ahaascen and Sara , knocking the two combatants apart. Ahaascen screams in pain, the electrical energy shocking him over and over again, he curses the air , swinging wildly. Sara too is being shocked by she can’t see the world is black, and pain, she covers herself with her shield.

Another spell , comes flying into Sara , a heartbeat later , “Incendiary Cloud” engulfs her. Sara twist with pain, the cloud randomly sparking explosions, and flaring up into balls of fire. Ceresti readies another spell, before it can escape her lips an arrow strikes her , left chest just above her breast, she curses , “Ahhhhhhhhrrrrrrrr damn.” She moves from another arrow, the arrow in her is burning , and working magic , she struggles to understand the spell. Then she feels a sharp sting , she looks down at her thigh , an arrow has broken the bone and torn her leg badly, the blood is flowing very fast. She screams , “KILL THEM FOR GODS’ DAMN SAKE!” The archers are slow to response, Ceresti curses herself , ‘Slow spell.. I can’t concentrate, what spell is this! I can’t focus my energy….’

Reria puts another arrow through the center most archer, turning his body to stone. She moves as she fires, hitting them in turn, some of the arrows are simple enchantments , and simple spells but she brought a dozen of the stronger enchantments , now she intends to kill the witch that attacked Sara.

The world is blur , to Chuid Kic, he had been a sniper , never used being hurt or in danger, nor believing he could die. But as the arrows torn through his armor , he knew it was happening, in slow motion he coughed up blood , struck by arrow after arrow, one of the caused purple yellow mushroom to sprout from his wound , that ended up exploding into a sneezing powder. He heard his friends screams , as if slow motion. When the last arrow torn through his lung , he dropped his bow , and looked down, at his wounds, and begin to cry.

Ahaascen caught up Ceresti, her face twisted in pain , her left arm slowly turning to stone , only her powerful protection spells had saved her from that fate. Her thigh was tangled mess of weeds , and vines, their thorns tearing at her body. Ahaascen looked by at the archer, who had caused this , he would get Ceresti to the surgeon, then he would kill her.

Ceresti mind flashes with ‘The girl , with the Chronomancer, has innate protection from magic , the child of a wizard or an apprentice mageling. She doesn’t seem capable of anything more than mantra spells ‘ Her mind screams , ‘Look again!’ Ceresti mind flashes with ‘The girl , with the Chronomancer, has innate protection from magic , the child of a wizard or an apprentice mageling. She doesn’t seem capable of anything more than mantra spells , though her appearance startled me , she reminded me of my Ceresti,’ Ceresti mind drifts and fades , as Ahaascen rushes her though the encampment.

The alert had been raised , the encampment was alive , Reria watches as Sara, touching the air, she is speaking to thin , “Lost?!” Reria , notches her bow, and runs to her , she whispers to Sara , “All Hell is break’n lose, we best get going..”

Sara faces Lost , ‘Lost… I’m scared.. I can’t see, I can’t focus.’ Lost extends his hand , ‘Its ok.. The part I hate about this, you have to find your own path.. I can only guide you…’ Sara watches him, ‘My own path.. What do you mean..’ Lost only says , ‘Certain things you already know, things you locked away , things you hide from yourself , things that frighten you… So far you been using only what has been shown to you , things that you have adopted as your own.’ Sara watches him and pleads, ‘How do I unlock the thing?’ Lost turns away , ‘I can’t tell you that , its your choice how you unlock it. I can’t tell you because I don’t know.. How it will unlock with you.’

Reria drags Sara , who is still talking to unseen ghosts. Then suddenly Ahaascen blade comes down, catching Reria’s shoulder , and crushing it. Reria screams , as the bone, and flesh is ruin, Ahaascen smiles, at Reria , “That’s it bitch , I am going to make you scream, and hurt .. I am going to make you tell me what you did to me mistress.” Reria struggles to get up , a heavy blow knocks her into the earth, she begins to cry , the man is moving almighty fast , and hurts worst than a dragon horse’s kick.

Sara eyes focus , she watches Lost vanish from her , she turns to watch Ahaascen deliver another crushing blow to Reria, who is a bleeding mess now. Sara , whispers , “Temporal Slide” instantly appearing in front of Ahaascen, she lifts a hand , and whispers , “Stop” Ahaascen freezes in mid movement.

Sara caresses Reria face , “I am so sorry , that spell did something… I understand why he sent me here.” Sara brushes the blood from Reria’s face , and whispers, “Full Heal” In a heartbeat , Reria’s body begins to repair itself , slowly at first then fast , faster still , the bone sets itself , the wounds close, a brief flash of light burns away any dieses. Sara smiles , “There all better, you going to be stiff , for a bit , until I can figure these spells out.”

Ahaascen watches the girl , make months worth of healing fade in seconds, he wets and craps on himself, as he realizes that she is turning to face him. He breathes a sigh of relief , as a half a dozen soldiers appear , quickly loading their crossbow.

Sara watches them, her eyes close, as she is suddenly surrounded by thirty soldiers, she opens her eyes and whispers, “Temporal Warriors” Huge breaks appear in the time and space , as six warriors dress in black and gold armor , step from them. They follow a mental thought from Sara , their weapons flash, the Isital soldiers draw their short swords.

A Temporal Warrior , steps through the soldiers, sickle flash , as he cuts down soldier after soldier, many of them only see a blur of movement , as the temporal warrior distorts time , and gravity, as they fight. Many soldiers , can’t even move , for they are suddenly heavy , or slow , some of them are sped up so fast that their hearts explode in a messy death.

Reti watches the camp, she nods to her archers, they begin to launch flaming arrows into the encampment , as she and Sara had agreed, if Sara did not return in at a certain time. She watches the camp for movement , there are soldiers running everywhere , alarms being raised.

A Temporal Warrior faces Sara , its eyes are haunting purple like Lost’s , its hair is long and red like Lost’s, it whispers, another Temporal Warrior draws her attention, saying “We can defend you , and fight along side you but we can’t fight a war for you.” Sara understands , as strong as they are , they are only a few , their will be six hundred or more soldiers here in a matter of minutes. The Temporal Warriors wait , Sara whispers , “I thank you for your help. I know the command word is, but I wish to alter is that ok?” The warriors nod , Sara smiles, “Renew replaces Dismissal..” The warriors vanish.

Reria, watches Sara, then she turns to Ahaascen. Sara comments, “You have about thirty seconds to decide what to do with him,” Ahaascen wets himself again, and begins to unfreeze , he watches the girl, Reria , looking through her pack.

Ahaascen drops to the ground, as he does Reria jabs him with an arrow , she whispers, “Feel, live, breathe, be a..” Ahaascen screams, as wooden spines break through his skin, his toe break , and grow , as he grows roots, his face is torn up as a branches rip though his skin, he screams as his jaw is torn apart. Then one by one his fingers are twisted broken , replaced by varies wooden branches.

Reria watches Ahaascen become an “All Season Tree” , the pain is beyond anything she went through but she has decided that he deserves this punishment. Sara is drawing her back to the wagons, she turns to follow Sara.

“Ok I want you to head west, Reti will meet you shortly after seeing the wagons. Don’t worry you won’t be followed. I have to do something first.. I have to talk to someone here.” Reria watches Sara, and asks , “Its that mage?” Sara nods , she starts to turn away , when Reria , suddenly speaks up, “Wait the children… those kids …. can we bring them with us?” Sara smiles, “You are as bad my Pedagogue Lost , but I will bring them here ,”

Sara watched the wagon train, a mass of mounts , wagons and twenty youths, fading into the forest. The protection on the wagons caused them to appear to be heading east , and north. With no mounts , and a small chance to track them, the Isital soldiers will have to search each direction.

The surgeon watches the guards drop , and the tent flap open, his eyes watch the young girl that look very similar to his charge Ceresti. The girl looks at him, then whispers , “Sleep” , the surgeon drops to the cool earth.

Ceresti watches the girl kneel beside her , the girl’s voice is soft and warm, “I suppose I should call you mother.. Though I don’t feel any sense of kinship with you.” Sara strokes her mother’s damp hair, she can sense Ceresti’s magic fighting Sara’s spells that where embedded into arrows for the Rangers. Ceresti breathes, “I thought you to be dead, I swear it,” Sara shakes her head, “I know the truth, you tried to get rid of me, for a short time you did want me. This spell that alerted you to my presence.. Was a way you kept track of me.” Sara watches the stoning poison working its way up and through Ceresti, Sara asks softly , “What made you want to be rid of me so badly?” Ceresti turns her face away, “I don’t remember..” Sara twist her mother’s face to look at her , “I know the truth , mother , I just want to hear you say it.” Ceresti fearing death , and fearing that her soul would be forever damned screams, “YOU WERE JUST A STEPPING STONE TO POWER! YOU HAD TO REVEAL YOUR MAGIC! YOU WERE A WORTHLESS THEN.. I HAD TO HIDE , I WAS IN DANGER.” Tears stream down Sara’s face, her mother instinctly, comforts her daughter, who weeps softly before bending forth to kiss her mother’s forehead, “Goodbye..mother.”

Days pass by quickly , Reria sits in her saddle, they had not heard from Sara , she just simply vanished, Reti had watch the encampment , for any signs of capture but nothing. The female mage they had fought , body was consume in a fire funeral, there was no attempt to search for the missing wagons, several times a night, a group would desert.

Reti appears beside , Reria , she whispers, “A messenger arrived, Lost has asked that all our company to head north , and join the Queen.” Reria doesn’t turn she asks “What about Sara?” Reti looks down at her mount , “Lost was aware she was missing , in his note he said she would catch up.”

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