Number 6

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic


Based off Game of War: Fire Age Follows a small alliance opposing the king of the realm

Submitted: December 14, 2017

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Submitted: December 14, 2017

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“Stop fussing, Riel.” Chandler muttered trying to hold her still. Mariel grumbled straining her neck around to check out what she could see of her back,

“I don’t understand all this glitz.” She said holding up the sides of her silken moonstone gown, “Why can’t you just represent me?” She asked Chandler sulkily.

“I’m not the leader of PFF, remember?” Mariel made of face but stopped shifting from foot to foot.

“We have five minutes, is Riel ready, Chan?” Dimitri’s voice carried from the doorway. His startling orange eyes full of stifled laughter. He watched as Chandler pulled Mariel’s hair into a braided crown leaving the rest of her flaming locks to flow around her shoulders in waves.

“Almost,” Chandler said, handing Mariel the lilac tinted silver crown of carved leaves, each depicting an alliance member’s name. Mariel slid the crown on her head turning to face Dimitri. His short light blue hair was spiked upward, he had a lilac tint to his metal chain mail and his knife was thrust into his belt. Riel held out her hands for her twin sun and moon blades. Dimitri held them out to her hilt first; she slid them into the sheaths on her back.

“Okay, let’s get this show on the road.” She said. All three of them had almost made it out the door when Frey spotted them,

“Mariel!” He yelled his sapphire eyes flashing.

“Drat”, Riel muttered as Chandler made a suspicious coughing noise on her right side.

“Where have you been? We’re going to be so late!” He griped his hazel hair quivering with agitation. Mariel speeded up her pace, her face sour,
“Well guys, we wouldn’t want to keep Lord Fart Face waiting.” This time Dimitri and Chandler snorted. The three of them caught up with Frey and Joren who quickly fell in behind Mariel. They hit the doors to the counsel room, as Mariel slowed her walk; Chandler and Joren fell to each side of her while Dimitri took up the rear. She took her place at her throne. It was a deep purple studded with the birthstones of all her members. Pulling her Gemini blades out of her sheath, she leaned over to stab them into the middle of the table,

“Mariel, Leader of PFF, present.” The room quieted as everyone settled in.

“I suppose we can get started now that PFF is here”, A voice boomed from across the table. Chan and Dimitri both grabbed Mariel’s shoulders as she started to get up. All three of them shot glares over at Lord Zoxx of ZoJ. Mariel looked up catching Kadri’s eye. She was sitting in the CGS leader chair. She and a few of her members were shaking their heads in disgust. Chandler stepped forwards her light blue alexandrite eyes hard,

“I believe you don’t mean any disrespect by that LZ?” Joren’s hand clenched reflexively into a fist, Dimitri nudged him and he took a breath as Lord Zoxx replied after a hesitation,

“No of course not, Lady Chandler, we are after all allies.” Mariel her grey eyes flat turned back to counsel.

“Without further interruption I believe we were talking about the treatment of smaller alliances in Jurupari?”

“I don’t see what the point is, honestly.” Choppy drawled from the NoJ side.

“The point is that when the walls fall if we aren’t united then we will all die.” Mariel said fighting to keep her voice steady. “If you refuse to include the smaller alliances in this Kingdom, we won’t help you when the walls fall. We will also be your downfall.” Choppy jumped to his feet his face livid,

“PFF hold your tongue!” Mariel snatched her swords from the table as she yelled,

“Why don’t you make me you’re Lordship?” She spat at him.

“Shit”, Dimitri muttered as Riel’s swords came up. She charged down the table at Choppy who flew at her roaring. Chandler winced as Mariel ripped a slit in her dress and slammed into the Champion of Jurupari. They both crashed backwards off the table swearing as four ranking officers of the oJ family went towards the fight.

“That’s our cue. Come on boys, time to get our hands dirty.” Chandler said, grabbing her mage staff and charging into the chaos.  Dimitri overtook her to grab an LGI who was reaching for Mariel, who’d pinned one of Choppy’s many bangles to the floor and was attempting to go mono on mono with him. Chandler grabbed a nearby NoJ member by the back of the collar yelling in his ear,

“Attilla, Get Choppy. I’ll get Riel.” Attilla grimaced as a foot caught his shin and dove into the scuffle. Chandler had managed to grab one of Mariel’s arms when a loud horn blew over the noise causing a momentary halt.

“Riel, not again.” Bezo said, rubbing his temples as the door swung shut behind him. Mariel grabbed her blade jerking it off the floor and away from Choppy,

“He started it.” She snapped glaring defiantly at the king. Bezo held up a hand interrupting Choppy’s defense,

“Enough, both of you. Go sit back down so we can have a quiet counsel, please.” Both Mariel and Choppy glared at each other before retiring to opposite sides of the room. Bezo took his place at the head of the table. He rubbed his hands together causing orange sparks to fly,

“Alright, I’ve thought about the small alliances, and we need to include them. The main factor that won me over is unfortunately PFF.” He held up a hand halting the grumbling from his alliance and others. “I know Mariel is quite irritating, but she’s got spirit and we need that. So we’ll put it to a vote. Rank fours and leaders only.” He finished, meeting each person’s eyes. Attilla held up a hand,

“PFF has my vote from ZoX.”

“And mine.” Kadri said, casting her vote from CGS.

“One more vote for PFF and other small alliances?” Bezo reminded.

“Qoj votes in favor.” Queen said raising a hand.

“Alright, that decides it.” Bezo said as Choppy scowled across the table at Riel.

“You did it girly.” Chandler said, squeezing Riel tightly. Dimitri clasped both her shoulders warmly his deep orange eyes coming alive. Frey clapped her on the back smiling and Joren joined Chandler in the group’s hug murmuring,

“We did it, we’re in.” Mariel smiled as she disengaged herself from her family, and walked around the table to meet Bezo. He held out his hand and she took it,

“Welcome to the hive Mariel try and not cause to many problems.” He said smiling.

“No promises, but I’ll do my best.” She said, her eyes twinkling.

“So, how did it go? Are we in? What happened? Did you get in a fight?” Teague bounced alongside Riel bombarding her with questions. She held up a hand,

“One at a time, Teague. Jesus Christ, slow it down.” Teague stopped bouncing his amethyst eyes still eager,

“Well?!”

“Okay Okay, It went pretty damn good. Yes we’re in. Counsel was erm… eventful, and I almost made Choppy eat shit.” Teague started bouncing again,

“Really? Oh that’s awesome. We did it!” He skipped away twirling his twin hatchets ecstatically.

“He’s going to hurt himself one of these days.” Chandler muttered, drawing up beside Riel. She shook her head, “He makes me feel old.”  

“Get everyone together; we need to train if we’re going to play with the big dogs.” Mariel said, nudging Chandler.

“Yes, finally!” Chan enthused electricity crackling in her palms.

“Aden, I’ll pair with you so everyone who has twin weapons learns how to attack and defend.” Mariel called over the noise. Aden came over his ebony broad sword propped over his shoulder. Mariel called over the noise of the alliance. Aden came over his ebony broad sword propped over his shoulder. Mariel smiled catching his garnet eyes as and flicked his chin up at her in greeting. His sword came up as an extension of his arm and stopped with a clang as Riel blocked the slice on both of hers. He whirled and struck; Riel turned taking the blade on the side of her first blade and swung at his belly with the other. Aden jumped back sucking in his stomach, smiling at the near miss. Pulling back quickly he locked swords with her. Riel strained against the weight and without hesitation hooked a leg around Aden’s causing him to fall with the points of her blades at his throat. They were both panting as Riel helped him up, turning to her audience she explained,

“If you get into a situation where you get locked together, resort to hand to hand combat; Dimitri can show you that. If you rely only on your weapons you’ll probably lose since they have two arm’s strength to your divided strength.” Aden turned back to his students,

“Remember if you get stuck fighting with someone with twin weapons like Riel, Teague or Dreya; make sure to watch out for BOTH objects. If you get in close like I did with Riel, you have a better chance of surviving. Also those who wield twin weapons are masters of their craft. They have to be, to wield two weapons efficiently and safely.”

 

The group broke up to have dinner; Riel looked up as a sodden messenger squelched into the great hall.

“Message for you, Milady.” He said handing her a dripping scroll. She took it shaking it out causing water to fly around the room; ignoring Dreya’s look of outrage as some of it landed in her soup. She unfolded it with a snap and scanned it. Chandler watched in interest as Riel’s face turned an interesting shade of deep red.

“What the fuck!” She yelled, jumping up from the table scattering dishes. “I’m going to kill those lying little wankers.” Riel grabbed her swords, stuffing them into her sheaths she charged for the door. Dimitri looked up startled, half a chicken leg dropping from his open mouth.

“What…?” Shooting a questioning glance at Chandler, who sighed at him getting up slowly. Frey jumped out of the way looking bewildered as Riel blazed past him heading for the exit. Chandler took a look at the paper and was up in a flash,

“Sound the alarm. Get everyone together pronto. Dimitri, get Riel before she kills herself. Frey get word out to The Resistance, now. Teague, Kaori, Aden, Nox, Rowan, Dreya, Luis, Marcus, Shaz, Rook, Saren, Todor, Benny, get battle ready. Joren, you come with me. We’re gonna get to the bottom of this.” She said, as tiny lightning bolts lanced off her hands. Joren followed her out, pulling his thorned sickle out of the table and rushing up to the mage tower behind Chandler. Frey dashed off pausing only to grab the hapless messenger and buckle his silver sword to his waist. Teague and his gang split off into different directions running headlong for armor and weapons. Dimitri threw himself out of the door roaring,

“Riel, Stop! Let’s talk about this for a second.” He dived for her and caught her around the waist; they both crumpled to the ground.

“Dimitri, get off of me! That’s an order!” Dimitri snorted and leveled himself half off of her.

“Riel, stop and think about this. You’re not going to take the entire OJ clan on by yourself.”

“Yes I am!” She raged trying to shove him off of her.

“No, I won’t let you.” He said, sprawling back on top of her. She struggled for a bit more then stopped,

“Okay, okay, let me up and we’ll strategize.” Dimitri got to his feet, pulling her up with him,

“That’s my girl.” He beamed. He pulled her up the stairs to the West wall where they almost collided with Kaori who was looking the other way, gesturing with a cutlass at the North and South walls. Rowan was on the South wall hanging dangerously over the edge waving a giant corkscrew at Kaori, who was shouting at him,

“Rowan you oaf; get people who can operate bows up here.” Kaori turned to Mariel who was watching Rowan’s lean cautiously. She sighed in relief as he disappeared down the stairs. Aden was getting a huge crossbow up on the South wall, his broad sword strapped across his back; he waved grinning at Riel. Teague and his gang appeared with Rowan in tow up on the East wall and began stringing bows.

“Oh good, we have archers.” Riel muttered, watching as Joren clattered down from the mage tower in full armor. Chandler was close behind her eyes flashing,

“Done deal then?” Riel asked. Chandler nodded hefting her mage staff,

“Let’s roll.”

Mariel stood on the West wall facing the forces of Evo and NoJ.

“Jesus Christ, I should have expected this.” She muttered, leaning on her blades.

“Archer crew.” She said, naming Teague’s group, “Get some flaming arrows and back me.” Riel rattled off names as the people she’d called came to stand beside her. Mariel stuck her swords in a chink in the wall, and accepted the silver bow Dimitri passed to her.

“Aden, make sure those are burning crossbows.” Aden nodded flipping a thumbs up. Riel drew back her bow, the heat from the fire arrow hot on her cheek,

“Aim” The sound of a dozen bows being drawn back. Riel sighted on the one tower whom she recognized leading it. Smiling she said, “Fire” Sending her own arrow straight into the heart of Sir G’s tower which immediately burst into flames. The tower crackled and fell away in strips. Riel grabbed another arrow notching it to her bow and yelling, “What’s up, Assholes?” Sir G gritted his teeth and sighted on her, she ducked narrowly missing being impaled on his arrow. Out of the corner of her eye she saw Luis and Grei both grab Dimitri to keep him from diving off the wall at Sir G.

“Dimitri, go get ready in the courtyard. You’ll have your chance at him soon enough.” Riel said over her shoulder. Dimitri gestured rudely at Sir G and headed down the stairs.

The arrows only went so far, and were not potent enough to stop NoJ from ramming the doors.  “Chandler, Joren, go grab everyone and join Dimitri. Things are about to get rough.” Riel yelled as she threw down her bow. Chandler scrambled down the stairs a step behind Joren who was dashing headlong for the shuddering gate. Riel grabbed her blades and clattered down after them pausing only to rattle off some names, “Nox, Rowan, Rook and Saren; stay on the walls. Make sure they don’t take us from above too.”

“Got it, go kick some ass, Riel.” Nox said, hefting his javelin, his silver eyes alight with battle fever. Riel got downstairs right as the doors fell. She brought her blades up smiling, her hair flaming around her. Chandler skidded to a stop next to her and smiled showing her teeth in a ferocious grin.

“You ready?” Riel asked her, watching the flares of electricity spill over Chandler’s body. Chandler spun her mage staff in a wide arc transforming it into a jagged bronze blade,

“Oh we’re going to take some mofos with us Ri.” She spun away slicing down and effectively beheading the first NoJ soldier to make it inside the gate. Joren charged past Riel swinging his already bloody sickle. Riel ducked under an ax to avoid being hit and realized that it was Attilla. She slammed the butts of her swords into his midriff knocking the breath out of him and causing him to drop his weapon. An arrow from Nox spun him around taking Attilla in the shoulder. He collapsed unconscious. Riel waved at Nox who saluted her and sighted on his next target. She turned to face her next attacker, Ivan who hailed from WoJ. He swung at her his scythe missing her head by inches. She skipped backwards preparing for the next swing when Kaori slammed into her knocking her out of the way. Kaori’s cutlass came up countering the strike and then sliced down across Ivan’s chest. He cursed and jumped back. Glaring at the 5’ 3” ruby eyed girl wielding a sword dripping with his blood.

Azazael scanned the chaos searching for Mariel. His Daedric Scythe perched over his shoulder. His eyes focused in on Kaori who had managed to send Ivan reeling away and made a beeline for her instead. His pale green eyes lit up as he went for the kill. His blade came up swishing down towards Kaori and was stopped by a horrible screeching noise as Aden came out of nowhere to counter his attack. On the other side of the wall, Frey helped Riel up for what seemed like the millionth time. She was dripping blood from a gash in her shoulder, where Sir G had gotten under her armor. She took her hand away, wincing as she saw the amount of blood spilling from her shoulder. Locking her hand around her remaining sword she gazed around at the chaos.

“Shit”, she muttered spotting Choppy plowing his way towards her. She shoved Frey away from her and lifted her sword up to meet the Champion. They locked blades as Riel strained against Choppy’s brute strength, “Frey, fall back. Grab everyone you can and get the portcullis down. Cut them off!” She screamed over her shoulder her knees buckling. She spun down and away from Choppy breaking free of the brute force a new spark of determination settling into a grim line in her jaw. “Come on Scumbag, can’t you do better than that? You’re pathetic.” She taunted backing out of the courtyard onto the road. Choppy sprinted after her his body shaking in rage. He caught up with her just as the Portcullis thudded down locking him and the rest of the NoJ generals outside of PFF. He turned toward it with a howl of rage. Riel took the opportunity to take stock of her fighters left outside the walls with her. Dimitri, Chandler and Teague were all engaged against NoJ generals. She saw Attilla, Ivan and his wife Diva inside the walls with no chance of freedom. Choppy turned towards Riel his mouth practically foaming,

“You bitch! You planned this.”

“Of course I did. You think I actually trusted you backstabbers for a minute? Please. You fell straight into trap numero A.” Riel laughed in his face. She ducked under his arm and slashed the thick muscle in the back of his thigh while he was still gawping at her in astonished rage. He crumpled to the ground momentarily incapacitated. “Part two.” She muttered and lifted her sword running straight at Azazael screaming. Azazael turned his back on Dimitri in surprise as Riel flew toward him, barely managing to get his blade up in time. “Get everyone to the trees. Now Chandler! I’ll hold them off. Stick to the plan.” Chandler threw a frantic glance at Riel. Riel shook her head once and mouthed, “Please Chan, It’s the only way.” Chandler nodded once her eyes turning icy as lightning lanced off her fingertips, striking Choppy, Azazael, Sir G and Mariel. All three of the NoJ leaders collapsed at once in agony. Riel sank to the ground her body convulsing as the shock floored her. Riel watched through half closed lids as the remainder of her people disappeared into the secret tunnel at the edge of the woods. She watched as Teague and Chandler shoved Dimitri forcibly into the tunnel. The fight went out of her in a sigh of relief as they popped out of sight. She struggled to her feet with the rest of the NoJ generals. Azazael groped sluggishly for his knife and after grabbing it tackled Mariel. They both fell to the ground Riel’s sword coming out of her hand. Azazael pinned both her wrists to the ground wincing as she kneed him in his goods.

“Grendel, get over here with the irons!” He snapped, trying to Keep Riel from damaging more of him. Grendel stumbled over bleary eyed, as Azazael wrestled Riel over onto her stomach. He straddled her securing her wrists behind her resting on her lower back just above her butt. He grimaced as she bucked underneath him almost throwing him off. He repositioned himself leaning over her his hair falling around his face as he gritted his teeth. His knees secured her legs to the dirt as he leaned his full body weight on her wrists; he used the other hand to push the side of her face into the ground by putting his hand loosely on the side of her neck and applying pressure. Mariel made a noise of discontent as Azazael bore down on her.  “Today Grendel!” He barked his voice strained. The irons slid onto her wrist and she winced as Grendel closed them tighter than necessary. Azazael let go of her neck and rolled off her his platinum shoulder length hair swirling in his face.  He pulled her up with him sandwiching her into his chest and holding the knife across her throat.

“Azazael slit her throat now and be done with it.” Sir G said, Azazael threw a scathing look at him. Mariel took that moment to attempt to kick Azazael, catching him on the shin. He cursed loudly throwing the knife away he forced her on her knees one hand pushed down on her shoulders so she couldn’t rise. The other wrapped around the front of her upper throat and jaw forcing her to look up towards PFF walls. Mariel groaned slightly as Azazael increased the pressure on her neck moving her hands uncomfortably causing the shackles to clink. Azazael ignored her and nodded up at PFF, “Yeah let me just kill her, while her alliance offs Attilla, Ivan and Diva.” Sir G took a step back from Azazael and looked up at the walls where the missing NoJ members could be seen with arrows trained on them.

“Oh.” He muttered frowning as Riel squirmed against Azazael.

“So we’ll be going now.” Azazael called to PFF “We’ll take good care of her for three days; she won’t be killed as long as you don’t kill ours, savvy?” Joren completely ignored Azazael, addressing Riel directly,

“I don’t want them taking you Riel.” He said his hands clenched on the hilt of his sword. Azzy caught Riel’s eye, clicking his tongue in annoyance he removed his hand from her throat and into her hair allowing her to speak.

“I’m just going on a three day vacation, I’ll be fine. Take ‘good’ care of Attilla for me.” She said with a small smile. Azazael jerked her head back by her hair cutting off further speech; the sarcasm on good care had not escaped him. He pulled her up and with a small smile of revenge pushed her away from him towards Sir G who caught her by her hair. Riel glanced over at Azzy who flicked his chin at her and turned away pulling his hair back in a loose ponytail. She growled at Azzy’s back and tried to lunge at him. Grendel just barely managed to grab her around the waist,

“No, No. Behave.” He snapped irritably. Azzy turned back around his hands still up by his head fixing his hair; he lowered a hand and beckoned her mockingly with a finger. She struggled against Grendel who cursed shaking his head at Azzy. He grabbed her cuffed hands with one hand and the back of her neck with the other, and bent her over so she was looking at the ground. She pushed against him to no avail he kept her next to him frog marching her towards Azazel’s city. They stopped as the gates swung open and Sir G yanked her back around to face her city smiling as she groaned slightly as he jerked on her hair. He checked to make sure Azazael had already disappeared inside, before waving a hand at PFF to get their attention. He half way turned to face Azazel’s city and threw Riel to the ground. She landed heavily having no hands to catch herself with. He kicked her hard in the side causing her to curl up and shoved her shoulders back down when she tried to get to her feet; forcing her to crawl through the doors. Before Sir G followed her in he turned to the outraged faces of PFF,

“Good care of her guys.” He laughed and the doors swung shut. Riel struggled to her knees at Grendel’s feet inside the gate her eyes flashing with anger. Sir G stood over her the tips of his fingers playing teasingly with the strands of her hair. Azazael stripped off his armor, sighing in relief as he rolled his shoulders then turning to face Riel,

“Oh look you’re bleeding; I should probably take a look at that. I want you to last through your stay. I’ve got a lot of things planned.” He bent down to assess her. Riel waited until his face was level with her own before spitting in it. He grimaced in distaste wiping her saliva from his mouth. Sir G pulled her head back exposing her neck as Azazael traced her jaw line with a slender finger.  Azzy’s hand clamped hard onto her jaw he gave her a shake. He dropped her chin and gestured at Grendel to loosen his grip on her hair. Riel growled in frustration as his fingers found the straps to her breast plate. He pulled that off exposing her heavy padded battle dress. He grabbed the knife Choppy offered him and began to cut it off her, “Do you have clothes on underneath this?” He asked offhandedly continuing to cut the coarse fabric. Riel glared at him her cheeks faintly red,

“You’d like if I didn’t wouldn’t you?” She spat eyeing him furiously. He shrugged, “Maybe, although with all you’ve done I think I would enjoy what it would do to you more than what it would do for me.” He finished cutting the last stitch, and grasped the two halves of the dress, catching Riel’s eye he smiled patronizingly at her, “Guess we’ll find out” He tore the dress off her and cast it aside. “Pity”, he said looking at the sweat soaked lilac t-shirt and breaches that clung to her curves. “Hold her”, he ordered at Sir G who tightened his grip pulling her head up further so she was looking at the sky. She felt Azzy’s hands probe at the gash in her left shoulder,

“Ow”, she muttered, wincing slightly. Azazael smacked her cheek lightly and ripped the fabric away from her wound exposing her left shoulder.

“Huh, Grendel didn’t get you deep at all; it’s just a long slash.” He muttered causing Sir G to frown.

“Probably because he’s horrible at sword work.” She smiled tauntingly. Grendel swiped his hand across her left cheek sharply, causing her to hiss in pain.

“Do you need Choppy to hold her, if you can’t take her little jibes?” Azazael gazed coldly up at Sir G his eyes slightly amused. Grendel let her head drop pushing her roughly. She fell towards Azazael who caught her sighing as he beckoned Choppy over to him. Choppy cast aside his sword, his strong hands sliding onto her, one on her good shoulder and one on the back of her neck. Azazael grabbed her chin severely making her meet his eyes,

“Behave, Riel. Don’t make this more painful for yourself. I’m gonna sew it up.” He dropped her chin and accepted the quill and thread from Sir G who had sulked back. “Get her on her back, secure her arms above her. Grendel, get her legs so she doesn’t kick.” Choppy took the shackles off her wrists pushing her onto her back; he stretched her hands above her, securing her wrists under his knees. Sir G did the same with her feet making sure to pull her steel footwear off first. She lifted her head to see Azazael in the middle of threading the quill. She struggled her eyes going wide,

“Wait a second, it’s not that bad just leave it”, she said almost pleadingly.

“Hold her down” Azzy commanded as Choppy dug his fingers into her hair securing her head to the ground. The quill pierced her skin down by her left breast, and she bit back a scream. The second stick and Choppy and Sir G were hard pressed to keep her pinned down.

Riel’s screams resonated from behind the walls of Azazael’s stronghold. Joren his face white with fear paced the wall top frantically. Dimitri’s swearing mingled with Riel’s agonized screams as he pounded and raged from the room that Chandler had locked him in to keep him from going on a one man crusade.

“What the fuck are they doing to her? Riel never screams, or cries.” Rowan asked leaning over the battlements staring at NoJ.

“I don’t know, but she better be in one piece or heads are gonna roll.” Chandler said her Mahogany hair flying over her shoulder as she spun her mage staff expertly watching it change back and forth from a staff to a sword.

“CHANDLER OPEN THIS FUCKING DOOR RIGHT NOW, CAN’T YOU HEAR HER. WE HAVE TO DO SOMETHING.” Dimitri roared from down below his voice followed by a loud thump as he threw himself against the door.

“Maybe I can scry them.” Chandler said ignoring Dimitri’s ranting. She trotted towards the mage tower with a stream of PFF in tow.

 

“Riel had stopped screaming her voice having deserted her. Azazael was tying off the last stitch his hands steady. She lay limply on the ground her eyes glazed over as she drifted in and out of unconsciousness.

“Get me a bucket of cold water.” She heard Azazael snap from what seemed like eons away. He bent over her his face inches from hers, “Don’t tell me you’re fire’s gone so quickly riel.” His hand caressed her face. She desperately tried to pull away, but her body was past obeying her mind. Sir G arrived with the bucket and threw the water over her; the shock of the cold doing absolutely nothing to unfreeze her locked muscles.

“Do you want me to get another bucket?” Sir G asked from overhead. Azazael’s amused voice answered him,

“No, I think I’ve got a way to snap her out of shock.” He turned to face her again his eyes dancing maliciously. Riel flinched inwardly as he brought his face centimeters from hers his warm breath on her face. She knew what he was going to do a second before his lips crushed against her own. She struggled to make her body lash out at him, screaming in frustration inside of her head. Azazael was smiling as he felt her respond just the tiniest bit. He slipped his tongue between her unyielding lips into her mouth, deepening the unwanted kiss. Riel’s body snapped awake. She shoved him away from her with a grunt of effort ignoring the puling on her stitches. She rolled over and up into a defensive crouch, her hands curled into fists.

“You disgusting shit”, she spat at him. Azazael sat back on his heels laughing as she glared at him, wiping her mouth. Sir G looked equally disgusted as he started towards her. She acted swiftly; ducking under his grab she spun slamming her heel into his kidney. He fell heavily and did not rise. Choppy grabbed her around the waist, grunting as she slammed a hand into his solar plexus. He loosened his hold on her slightly. She twisted trying to get free of him, but couldn’t quite manage to move the way she wanted too because of her stitches. Choppy recovered himself pushing her onto her knees and he pulled her arms behind her his grip unyielding on her biceps.  Azazael rose from the ground where she had shoved him still chuckling. He ran his tongue over his lips and winked at her. “Maybe I take back what I said earlier about not enjoying seeing you naked.” She snarled at him as Choppy held her steady.  “I didn’t know you were so well trained in hand to hand, who is blessed with that specialty again?” He asked standing in front of her, he stuck a hand under her chin so she was forced to look up at him. She hissed at him again, and he sank down to her level letting go of her chin and smiling his face thoughtful, “Dimitri, isn’t it? If I recall correctly you two are very close. His eyes gazed into a puddle a flash of astonishment flashing across his face. “Scrying? Chandler’s more resourceful than I thought.” He muttered to himself, “I’ll bet your Dimitri is there too.” He said as an afterthought glancing at the puddle. “I wonder how he’d react to this,” He nodded at Choppy who clicked the Irons onto her wrists in front of her and let go, stepping away from her. Azazael swooped in hauling her up he slung her forcibly against the rough stone of the outside wall. Riel’s back hit the wall hard knocking the breath out of her. She gasped managing to breathe normally; she took a step away from the stone. She got no farther; Azzy grabbed the front of her neck pushing her back up against the wall, he reached down grabbing her cuffed hands he secured them temporarily to a nail above her head his mouth coming down on hers. He used his body to sandwich her between himself and the wall letting his hand slide down her body to rest on her butt. He switched his right hand to curl it in her hair forcing her head to the side as he sucked on her neck. Riel’s eyes sparkled with tears, her cheeks flushed with shame; she let out a strangled sob.

“Chandler broke the connection turning away from the crystal in disgust.

“Damn it!” She yelled, breaking the thick silence that stretched across her people.

“Chandler.  Let me out.” Dimitri’s voice floated up from below strangely calm. Chandler winced,

“How much of that did he see?” She asked Joren who was rubbing his temple.

“All of it.” Came the reply. Chandler rubbed her eyes tiredly.

“We have to wait the three days. Riel won’t thank us if we get killed trying to rescue her.” She said. “I need to go visit Attilla.” She marched off with Joren and Frey in tow.

Riel struggled against Azazael whose hand was dangerously close to disappearing under her shirt.  He looked down at her hearing the sound she uttered.

“I definitely take back what I said about me not enjoying you.” He sucked in a breath biting his lip his eyes raked her figure and she squirmed under his gaze. His hand slipped under her shirt he grabbed her right breast and squeezed aggressively. Riel groaned struggling to get away from him. Her efforts were evaded as Azzy again grabbed her neck cutting off a fourth of her air supply he forced her to stick out her chest. He changed his grip on her breast and leaned in taking a deep breath he inhaled her scent. She could feel the slight bulge in his pants press against the insides of her thigh, His tongue found the edge of her jawline and he sucked hungrily.

“Azazael, play times over.” Bezo’s voice barked from across the courtyard. Azazael swung around away from Riel causing her to fall at his feet, her hands finally coming free from the nail above her head. “What are you doing?” Bezo asked curiously strolling towards the both of them.

“Just having a little fun.” Azazael shrugged, his eyes roving over her huddled figure.

“With Riel?” Bezo asked incredulously.

“I wanted to see if her body was as hot as her attitude, and I was not disappointed. I never really noticed, having never seen her out of official get up. And as long as she’s here, I think I ought to get a little out of this.” Azazael said flicking his chin at her.

“Hmm”, He said speculating, “Let me see her”, He demanded his eyes curious. Azzy pulled her up on her feet fitting his arm across her throat and snagging her chained hands and raising them over her head. Bezo looked her over slowly his eyes finally coming to rest on her face. Riel’s gaze met his, defiant, even though the blush was prominent in her cheeks. He looked back at Azzy, “She has a nice body, but, I wouldn’t touch that with a ten foot pole, too dangerous.” Bezo replied shaking his head. “Anyways, bring her, I need some questions answered.” Riel’s head snapped up her grey eyes icy. Azazael let her go  and pushed her towards the King. She stumbled and caught herself stopping suddenly causing Azazael to run into her back. He hooked his fingers into the waistline of her breaches pulling her backwards into him. She waited until she felt his boner press into the small of her back, and his hands to run down her hips. She lifted her foot and drove it down on the pressure point where the foot connects to the leg. He cursed his hands coming free of her hips as he stumbled backwards. She turned to face him her foot sliding back into a defensive stance. Bezo turned around, shook his head at Azazael, “I told you, ten foot pole.” He grabbed Mariel’s bicep and slung her in front of him, he touched the small of her back with a blazing finger causing her to wince. “Walk, or burn; your choice.” Riel took a step forwards as Bezo prodded her along with Azazael lagging behind seething. They all tramped up to a stone chamber located in the tower of the Stronghold. Bezo unlocked the irons from her wrists and then secured them above her to a pair hanging on a chain dangling from the ceiling. Riel wiggled hearing the chains clink above her; she glared wearily at Bezo who stood in front of her.  “Okay Riel, top fighters in your clan, who are they?” Bezo asked. Riel tugged at her hands ignoring the question,

“What?” She asked.

“Who are your top fighters?” He asked again.

“What?” She said again. Bezo ground his teeth in frustration his hands lighting up.

“Your fighters, who are they? Tell me.”

“What?” Riel said her voice smug. Bezo strolled forwards his hands extinguishing, he slapped her across the face. She reeled from the blow, her cheek outlined with his handprint.

“Who are your top fighters, Riel?” He asked again his voice steely.

“What?” Riel said glaring hatred at him. Bezo lifted his other hand, slapping her across the other cheek. She cried out in pain, her hair falling into her face. Bezo grabbed a chunk of her hair jerking her head back to look at him,

“Fighters?” He asked.

“What?” she managed to croak out. He let go of her with a sigh of disgust,

“Azazael, get the whip.” Bezo said holding Mariel’s chin up looking her over shrewdly.

“I just sewed her up my lord, that’s not the best idea.” Azazael said hesitating at the door. Bezo grunted pulling her shirt aside to check out the damage. He sighed unlocking her hands; he looked at her while she messaged her wrists.

“I’ll look at that tomorrow.” He said gesturing at the stitches, “I might have to sear it shut.” He grimaced poking the beginning signs of infection. Riel winced her hands curling into fists she took a step away from him. Bezo regarded her for a second longer before swiping at her with a flaming hand. Riel side stepped around him avoiding the magic and backed up to put the wall behind her. She was smiling a wicked glint in her eye. Bezo slid towards her a small smirk on his face he grabbed a sword off of the rack behind him. Mariel watched him her eyes never leaving his face as she expertly caught the two swords he threw at her. Her left hand came up holding the first sword defensively out in front of her level with her chest, the right sword was flat against the inside of her right arm which was out horizontally protecting her chest and abdomen. She moved her body so that her side was nearest him. He lunged forwards towards her with his sword raised for a slice down her middle. Riel took the strike on her right sword and ducked in low sweeping her left blade across his belly. Bezo jumped back sucking his stomach in, avoiding the cut that would have opened him up. He circled her no longer smiling his breath coming in gasps. He lunged towards her and back with great agility hoping to catch her off guard but she hardly moved. She settled forward into a small crouch and attacked in earnest. Her right sword taking each of his slices while her left sword attacked; Bezo whipped his sword towards her right side, and gritted his teeth as she changed to attacking on that side. She whirled around and slammed both sword points at him he blocked the sweep; the impact jarring his teeth. Riel pulled back and drove both swords towards his chest. Bezo blocked one, as Riel came up and under with the left. It caught the hilt of his sword and sent it flying as she disarmed him, bringing both swords in an x on either sides of his throat. Bezo took a small step back and stopped as he felt the stinging pressure on his throat. Riel smile tightly at him,

“You shouldn’t fight a twin master unless you know what you’re doing.” She said her voice harsh, Azzy started towards her immediately. She gave him a dismissive glance and lowered her swords away from Bezos’s neck, dropping them contemptuously at his feet. Bezo recovered enough from his shock to pick up one of the swords she had dropped. Riel turned toward Azazael as he continued to advance on her, the moment her back was turned Bezo slammed the hilt into her head knocking her out.

 

“Was your whole plan to take Riel?” Chandler shouted half lifting Attilla off the floor as she grabbed him by the collar. He struggled to get out of her grip his eyes wide,


“What the fuck is you’re problem Chandler?” He spluttered.

“You know exactly what my problem is you sack of ooze.” She shook him pushing him away from her into Luis’s firm grip. Luis drew his iron sword and swung it towards Attilla who scrabbled backwards babbling,

“Yes, yes okay. That was the plan all along. We knew Riel would sacrifice herself to us to save her people, that’s just who she is.” Chandler and Luis advanced on him

“Why do you want Riel, for what purpose would you break the treaty?” Chandler asked her voice steely.

“We want your best fighters to merge with our sisters. That way we can keep Riel in line. She’s a danger to our rule.” Dimitri, who lounged in the door way chuckled,

“Keep Riel in line? You’ve got to be joking.” Attilla shot him a glance keeping one eye on Chandler and Luis.

“So let me get this straight, they’re going to make her tell them our weaknesses and statistics?” Chandler questioned starting forwards again. Attilla looked from one to the other,

“Yes, Bezo wants to fight Riel to see how good she is with a sword. If she can’t defend herself properly he’ll probably leave a mark on her to remind her that he’s stronger. Nox who had dropped into the room and was leaning against the wall laughed,

“The General? He plans on fighting her, with one sword that’s not even his mastered weapon?”

He asked Attilla who nodded, “Oh Bezo is in for a rude awakening. Riel is the best twin swords master I have ever met, and I have been in many alliances.” He left shaking his head and laughing. Attilla stared after him open mouthed.

“Bezo, doesn’t fight fair, he’ll win.” He said after a moment.

“Riel has honor, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t know how to fight dirty.” Luis said, sheathing his sword. “What next, Chan?”

“Get him in the stocks with Ivan and Diva.” She replied gesturing at Attilla. Luis nodded to Je, and they both heaved Attilla up, marching him towards the flagpole.

 

“Riel, wake up! You get to go back to your miserable hive today.” Bezo peered through the gaps of the cell bars at her. She used her shoulder to rub her eyes, yawned and got to her feet slowly. She shuffled over to the bars rolling her neck muscles, meeting Bezo’s eyes through the gaps,

“Well, let’s go then.” Riel said as Bezo pushed the cell door open. Azazael went to grab her arm and she jerked it out of his grip, “Don’t. Touch me.” She snarled her eyes flashing. Bezo snorted and gestured towards the stairs,

“Go get Choppy, you take the main gate and get geared up.” Azazael hesitated looking at Riel and then Bezo, with a sigh of irritation he trotted up the stairs.  A few seconds later Choppy appeared in full battle gear his haunted sword glowing through its sheath strapped to his back. He grabbed Riel roughly and half dragged half pushed her up the stairs. They arrived in the courtyard in time to see Azazael shoulder his Scythe. Sir G rushed up with Bezo’s helm and armor. He hefted his elven sword and headed for the gate. Riel watched as the gates opened and let Choppy tug her out onto the path. She squinted up at the sun wincing as the cut in her lip started to bleed again. The bruises along her neck and arms from Aza’s abuse seemed darker against the sun. She watched as the gates of her city opened and out came Chandler, Joren, Dimitri, and Luis with Attilla, Ivan and Diva in tow. She gazed up at the walls and saw the rest of her people leaning over them braced and ready. Bezo stopped them in the middle of the area between the two strongholds. Chandler did the same with Attilla, Ivan and Diva. Bezo grabbed Riels jaw roughly, “This isn’t over by a long shot, you’re lucky Attilla was captured. Next time I get my hands on you it won’t matter. Next time we’ll see if Azzy can loosen your tongue with his methods.” He hissed causing Riel to shudder. He shoved her away from him so she staggered the ten spaces into Dimitri’s arms. Chandler turned her back on Bezo and started back towards PFF with Riel and the rest of her party in pace with her.

“Rook.” Chandler barked up at the walls. Rook came scurrying down the stairs his hands out he let the protective shield settle around the party as they reached the gates. Dimitri set Riel down in the courtyard; he brushed the hair away from her face,

“Frey, get these shackles off.” Frey nodded the silver sword clearing its sheath instantly. He drove it down towards Riels bound hands, cutting the steel like butter. Her hands freed Riel began to rub her wrists but was stopped by Chan who stepped back so Rook could kneel down beside her. His hands hovered over her wrists shimmering a light gold, as his healing gift went to work. Riel felt a sigh of relief as the bruises vanished and her sword wound turned a healthy pink in scar tissue. Rook stopped her from getting up with a light hand; he touched a glowing finger up the fingerprint bruises on her neck. They vanished one by one, he then looked her over quietly; touched the split in her lip which also vanished. He looked up at Dimitri, who muttered something in German lifting up Riel’s shirt to reveal the bruises on her sides. Rook his eyes hard with concentration touched those as well. Dimitri pushed her shoulders down gently, whispering in her ear. Riel turned scarlet,

“No no that’s not necessary.” She said her voice half panicked. Dimitri shook his head,

“Rook, do it. Right side.” Dimitri nodded at her chest. Rook turned an interesting shade of pink, his eyes pleading.  “Rook!” Dimitri ordered warningly. Rook his cheeks crimson muttered apologies to Riel, who glared reproachfully at Dimitri who ignored her. With a string of German that sounded suspiciously like swearing Rook lifted her shirt to peer at her right breast. With another strangled sounding curse, his soft finger touched the deep bruising immediately healing them. He dropped her shirt like it was white hot, looking at her his face still visibly red,

“All better, Riel, yes?” He asked, his German accent coloring his voice. Riel rolled her shoulders again, further letting go of tension. She smiled her cheeks still holding a slight blush she reached out and hugged him around the neck,

“Yes, thank you so much Rook.” She said brushing his cheek. Rook turned redder if that were possible, mumbling something unintelligible he melted into the background. Riel rose her hair for once not wild, she turned grabbing Chandler in a fierce hug. “I missed you so much.” She whispered. Chandler smiled wrapping milk chocolate arms around her.

“PFF wasn’t the same without its lunatic.” She smiled. Riel laughed and drew back from Chandler to gaze over her family. Aden and Joren drew up on both sides of her each slinging an arm around her shoulders.

“So what does it look like on the dark side?” Aden asked smiling down at her. Riel looked up at him and Joren,

“Did you know they have absolutely no purple flowers growing anywhere? It’s a disgrace!” She said with mock indignation. Joren pulled away from her and turned stomping his foot,

“The nerve of people these days, ridiculous!” He said smiling slightly.

“Damn near criminal, that’s a personal offense!” Aden added shaking his head. Mariel laughed and pushed the two of them away from her playfully. She flopped down into the grass in the middle of the courtyard, staring up at the sky. Her eyes reflected the clouds chasing each other across the sky. Frey nudged her with a foot,

“We should plan for their next attack.” He said brushing hazel hair away from his eyes. Riel stared up at him reached up and pulled him down on top of her,

“Oh stop being a bundle of depressing Asian.” She said grinning. Frey levered himself half off her frowning. He was just about to stand when Luis’s voice rang over the banter,

“DOG PILE!” He ran for Riel and Frey who looked up alarmed.

“Oh shit, I don’t want bottom, I just got healed.” Riel muttered and scooted out from under Frey just as an airborne Luis made a spectacular landing mashing Frey’s face into the ground. Riel watched as Aden and Joren both whooping war cries jumped on top of Luis who looked less than pleased. Nox was elbowed aside by Rowan who dived onto Aden. Benny, Todor, Rook, and Saren all laughing madly flung themselves headlong into the chaos. Kaori grabbed Chandler who caught Riel’s hand who nabbed Nox on her way by. All four of them plunged onto the pile. Dimitri smiled shaking his head his orange eyes lighting up like fire. He watched as the pile over balanced and spilled PFF into the grass.

“Bloody hell, why did I have to be the bottom? You guys suck.” Frey grumbled rubbing his face as he sat up slowly.

 


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