The Adventures of a Peculiar Elf Named Warwick

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Warwick and his group of unexpected heroes conquer many series of conquests resulting in even bigger adventures of mass proportions further down the road.

The three foot short, dark pigmented Dwarven Elf stands at the end of the wooden table in the dimly lit room. He looks up at six foot two, burly mercenary standing across the table from him. Yet with the sheer arrogance he holds, stares him down with a demeanor any other Dwarven Elf would not. The mercenary holds his glance, pulling out a heftier sack of coins and tossing it on the table.

"300 gold, huge goblin nest west of Dracbarrow. Needja'ta take care uh' it so I can get 'cross the damn location they be blocking. Jusso' then I can ex'cute my hit and recieve my payment since we both know I ain't got no fucking chance of killin' 'um myself." the mercenary says.

He looks at the tiny yet very stock, muscular figure standing before him. The figure says nothing.

"So whadda ya' say?" the mercenary asks.

The Elf says nothing in return. He sits there in utter silence for at least thirty seconds. Staring at the bag of currency with his deep-space black eyes. The sockets holding such darkness, the mercenary has to hold back the urge of leaning forward to get a better look. Wondering if this being before him walks as a soulless vessel. 

He remains silent as he slowly and quietly picks up his payment from the table, and puts it within his companion's (a 2 foot tall Shadow Phoenix) delivery bag strapped onto the shoulders. But then once this task is over and completed, he turns over to the mercenary and speaks again.

"You're forty-two gold light." he retorts.

"That's all I got right now."

"Then perhaps I should find something of similar value to equal out the difference, no?" the three-foot statured figure scans the room looking for something interesting. Anything. He is not prepared to leave without his coins' worth. Then something interesting catches his clever eyes. Almost as if some invisible force is gravitating the little being's attention towards it.

It is what appears to be a decent sized satchel holding at least six or seven novels looking as old as artifacts along with a few scrolls. He senses he'll easily be able to pawn it off of him going off the idea that he was is your average, uneducated mercenary who would not find any use for a single novel. So why not get rid of some books that hold little value to him?

"What about the satchel filled with all those books?" the Elf said, pointing towards it.

"Seems a fair bargain. A couple lousy books for the difference of forty-two coins and those goblins off of your mind." he added, making the bargain sound in the mercenary's favor.

The mercenary paused for a moment, the elf could tell like he was acting as if was contemplating on the fairness of the trade, as if he had a clue about any of the items' value. While in reality the elf knew he had probably ripped them off the corpse of some poor bastard he had killed for a quick pay in and hadn't looked at the books since. He was a mercenary, afterall.

Finally the mercenary chuckled, "Ya know what you're right, elf. A couple old, worthless books just so I can kill two birds with one stone sounds good ta' me."

The elf smiled appreciatively, taking the satchel as the mercenary handed it to him. 

"Okay, guess we are all good to go then. I'll start the quest tomorrow at dawn break." the elf said as his voice carried out the door along with him. As if the shadow figure was never there.

.....

 

Not much later that night, the elf returned to his home in Dracbarrow with his trusted Phoenix by his side. His living quarters a small, humble brick villa. The irony of this is that yet his brick household was on the smaller side, it's superiority trumped every log cabin surrounding him no matter the size. See because log cabins usually pointed to a more modest living while brick buildings pointed to a wealthier status. 

On the elf's brick villa lies a sign over his front door. This sign has always been a comfort to him. A sentimental object that relieves the weight from his shoulders. A warm reminder the residence was his and that he was in fact, home. 

This is what the sign read:

Home of the Warwick the Elf

While I enter my humble abode with Shadow, I cannot help but smile arrogantly to myself as I sit my satchel down and take the coin purse from Spark's bag.  Just another day making quick coins off of uneducated mercenaries I think to myself as I take the two-hundred and fifty eight gold coins into the bedroom and add them to the stockpile. I do the math quickly in my head as I walk back into the other room. Four-thousand coins.

As I enter the dining room I grab a cannabis-filled cigar from the table, followed by a bottle of ale I pop the cork off almost immediately. I place the cigar in my mouth, turning my attention towards Spark perched upon one of the chairs by the table. 

"Just a bunch of stupid mercenaries aren't they, buddy?" I ask the bird in a playful voice, scratching his head and taking off the mail delivery bag he uses to carry supplies.

He responds with a series of playful rough head nudges and trills. Then a couple moments later he looks up to me with white bright, sparkling eyes contrasting deep, jet-black feathers. His white eyes have the sparkle of diamonds. 

A second later, he conjures a small flame lighting up the cigar in my mouth. I take a couple puffs, letting the flower's pungent aroma caress my soul. I let my body drift for what seems to be a good time, sipping my ale in between every couple of puffs.

As the ever lively liquid in the bottle began to die out, the sparks that had faded from the previous night begin to be brought back to life from the morgue check-in that resides along the edges of my mind’s rear.

Yet again, another night of a somewhat regular ritual I have performed as of late. A ritual that I may’ve allowed to replay on repeat more than usual for my own tastes. But yet, this somewhat sort of freshened feeling infects my being awhile after the point of my ingestion. 

I have come to refer to this ritual I’ve in repetition as an “ale-induced resurrection for the thirst of the liquid of knowledge”. A ritual which has repetitively replenished the burning flames of my passion I possess for growth of knowledge. 

Growth. 

Ironic, that the word grow, can be used to describe the development of a flower. Which you may have come to recognize represent things such as life, progression, and positivity. 

While on the other hand, perhaps you may use the word ‘grow’, for the development of a wildfire. Yet when the thought of a fire alone comes to fruition in your mind, it most likely will blossom flowers of opposite-sided concepts consisting of ideas more similar and surrounding to death, destruction and negativity. 

I sit in my chair, puffing the rolled herb in deep contemplation of the peculiar nature of words in general. More often than in the past I see that perhaps the stroke of writer’s pen possesses more power than the swipe of a warrior’s weapon could.

But words, even words hold their limitations. For example, how could anyone conceive the idea that a cute Dwarven Elf could convince blood-crazy killers to decide the discontinuance of their creations of colossal cities, the core of the consisting of citizen corpses. 

Not to mention with an obvious language barrier that lies present. This is when I have to admit, my weapons’ strike likely holds much more communicative ability than the movement of jaw. It has become quite apparent over the centuries that the sound of my sword’s stern strike resonates in the ears of uncultured creatures more than any word that may come from the inside of the mouth. The language of war doesn't vary by any empire. 

I contemplate these thoughts till the last of my recreational substances run dry and then I decide I’ve dove enough into them for the night and head to bed.

______________________________________________________________________

 

The next morning Shadow and I are up and off on our quest. We venture for the duration of two sun rotations. Setting up rest at inns in certain towns and villages. On the third day we reach our destination. The morning still in infancy with only the slightest touches of orange and yellow stroking out the bottom of the sky’s blank canvas. 

 

I survey the cave in which the goblins are supposedly located in. Outside the entrance are multiple bodiless heads on top of wooden stakes. Some look moderately fresh, while others are just skulls. A tactic to intimidate trespassers into not entering, but for me it might as well be a sign pointing we’re here, come destroy us.

Dry, faded blood is spread around the grounds of the stone cave’s entrance. Four goblin warriors stand guard outside equipped with spears and longswords taller than themselves.

“Well, definitely a goblin cave. Looks like the mercenary was right, Shadow.” I say rubbing the fur on his beak.

I pull out my bow and four arrows along with it. I spread the tips apart from each other on as the bow like the bodies of the goblins are. I pull back aim slowly, inhaling deeply yet calmly and then..

What in the-

AGGGHHHHHHHHHHH!” 

A younger human man comes charging onto the scene of the entrance out of nowhere. He swings his shortsword with a certain courageousness, slashing two of the goblins down quickly and then another shortly after. The  last one however, actually prepared for his attack jumps onto his back digging it’s claws through his leather armour.

In a matter of seconds, I launch an arrow over their way hitting the goblin in the back of it’s head. Ceasing movement, it slides off the humans back and hits the ground. Dead. The man looks around on high alert as I come out from the cover of the woods.

“It is only I, human.” I say approaching from behind him.

He turns around quickly with his sword pointed in my direction.

“Who are you?” his voice booms with confidence that’s similar to mine.

“My name is Warwick. I am just a Dwarven Elf. There is no need to fear. My business is not with you. I am here to eradicate this goblin den.”

“I’m sorry, but I, Prince Christopher am also here on business by the word of my father, Ruler of the Dracbarrowan Kingdom. And it is with my deepest apologies to inform you that I cannot allow you to do this. I must complete quest to complete to gain my father’s honor.”

“Listen firstly, really? ‘I am Prince Christopher of blah, blah.’ How much of a dick are you trying to sound like? Secondly I’ll be honest, I don’t give two goblin shits your honor. And finally, do you know what a goblin hoard of this size is like? At least a good, fifty bodies at the minimum. I am almost certain that this den will contain mages and goliaths. Are you prepared for that? The leather armour you’re carrying will be ripped to shreds by the goblin claws.”

“Are you ready for that, dwarf?” Christopher retorts, obviously not being able to form a wittier comeback.

“Want to find out?” I say dropping my bow and arrow as I withdraw my long sword. My arrogance showing through.

“It might be quicker than you running your mouth.” he smirks.

“I’m warning you right now, I shit gumdrops when I’m scared.” I say, chuckling on the inside to myself. Setting my feet into a stance.

“I don’t want to kill you, elf. But I must clear this goblin den if I envision future holding my return to the Dracbarrowan Kingdom.”

“I chuckle at the thought of you conflicted about taking a part in my death. I need to earn my bounty I’ve been given so people know I’m serious about what I say. Now move, before I dice you up and feed you to an ogre.”

Now it’s him chuckling, not taking me serious by any means.

“I will admit you are quite a bit more stocky than the usual Dwarven Elf, but I know your race and it is in short supply of warriors. I’m giving you one more out, but then I’m going to slay you.”

I live with my own arrogance, so others’ arrogance I have little patience for. Especially the human motormouth standing before me. I’m tired of talking, it’s time for action.

“Very well, death is the fate you choose!” I grunt, as I leap into the air I bring my full momentum down upon him with my sword. I’m sure his fate is sealed, casket closed, story ended in a moment. But at the very last second his sword’s blade collides with mine causing sparks to fly through both the air and my mind, this moment is just.. so alive. Every time I’m dodging death, I feel as if I’ve caughten life.

He staggers back and I start in on him with a series of lighter strikes. He retreats backwards until he’s able to recover himself long enough to counter the sixth blow. Not bad, kid. But not good either.

He goes in again trying to find a window to stab in the structure of my body. I evade the first slash, then block his second. He goes for a third swinging with greater might. As he does I jump upon his blade, then I jump again quickly somersaulting over his head and onto his back. 

He grabs a hold of one of my arms using it to throw me in the dirt, eating a mouthful of dust. Lying next to me, my bow and an arrow. Quickly grabbing hold of them both I turn around and fire off an arrow. My only guide the sound of my opponent’s approaching footsteps. 

“AGH!” Christopher cries out in agony as my arrow pierces his leather armour and catches his shoulder. It barely slows the progress of his charge, though. He’s on me as I recover my sword, sucker punching me in the eye. My body rag dolls another five feet from the impact hitting the ground with a solid impact. 

He’s towering over me again within a second, throwing another one of his blade strikes upon me. I counter it quickly but yet another one follows quite sooner than anticipated. I dodge the blade as it grazes my ear. As leap back we’re now stand similar to the same distance from the other as in the beginning. I smirk because I’m still certain that this is a fight I cannot lose. 

My grin shifts to a grimace rather quickly though, when I feel a slight pain. Out of reflex my hand reaches up quick and grabs my ear causing an increase in that same pain. This time out of reflex, I pull my hand away and it’s got a decent amount of blood on it. My ear. Perhaps I underestimated you human. That was my mistake and it will not happen again. 

He begins to charge, readying himself for yet another strike but I rip through the air with a leap, dodging the swing of his blade. Then slide on my knees between his legs, striking one of his legs which results in the knee of the wounded leg to collapse to the ground.

“AGHHH!” he yelps. This time the scream is less one of a warrior and more one that is laced with pain and strife.

Quickly he swings his body one-hundred and eighty degrees around along with his sword as I jump up from behind him. I don’t expect his quick recovery and when I notice the blade is on the way to the side of my armour, my reflexes are too late. The blade makes contact which then rattles the armour and my entire being. As his next strike comes down with brute force I deflect it rather effortlessly, though.

We begin in at each other breaking out into a pure sword duel. Blades violently glide through the air and then collide, causing a spectacle of dancing sparks.

“You know, Prince?” I say maintaining my composure as I duel him.

“What?” he replies.

I swing as hard as I can towards his sword as he swings his. I can tell he wasn’t prepared for it and speaking might have even thrown off his focus. Our blades make contact. His sword dismantles from his hand, flying five feet away. A moment later I have him pinned to the ground, my blade to his throat.

“I don’t think I want to kill a prince today, surprisingly.” I say joking only the slightest. “And I believe to have already exhausted far too much time and energy on this little quarrel of ours so what do you say to just tagging along and joining me on this?”

He nods his head hesitantly but seems a bit surprised. Maybe by the fact a Dwarven Elf just bested him in a sword fight.

“I will say one thing,” I say getting up and chuckling, “for a measly, human prince you can hold yourself quite well in a duel. Come, get up.”

Getting up he brushes himself off. We both go to retrieve our items from the fight.

 I loot the four goblin’s bodies, collecting a couple gold coins. 

Shadow swoops in and startles Christopher. 

“What is that?” He asks quizzically, staring at him perched upon my shoulder.

“What? He’s a Shadow Phoenix, have you’ve never heard of one?”

“I.. guess not.” he responds, still looking at the shadowed bird curiosity and awe.

“Alright enough of the talking. Let’s go destroy this den.”

As we walk through the cave’s entrance, I feel Christopher tense a bit. The blood from the entrance continues on, smeared along the stone walls. 

I hear a goblin scout begin to shuffle away to alert the others but within a second, Shadow is off my shoulder and onto his. Dragging his kicking, flailing, screaming body in front of me where I gut his annoying ass rather quickly.

“There’s one finished.” I say.

“Yep.” Christopher replies.

All of a sudden five goblin warriors come sprinting hard as ever from ave. One charging Goblin throws his spear which almost takes a dive into Christopher’s eye until he ducks out of its course of direction last second. 

I pull out my bow and let off four arrows at a time, dropping three of the goblins. The remaining one has my arrow impaled into its eye and is still charging. I slap it away with my bow before pulling out my blade and putting it precisely into the other eye. It drops dead.

 I turn as I see Shadow assisting Christopher in taking down the fifth one.“C’mon guys.” I chuckle. “I can’t be carrying you on my back.” 

Then out of nowhere a fireball searing through the dark catches me off guard. I go to duck but am afraid it might be too late till I see Shadow’s figure dart across the cave wall, jumping in front of me and engulfing the flames within himself. A moment later he sends the same fireball back at the cloaked goblin. 

It is almost sure to turn the goblin to ash when it uses a pattern of hand movements which manipulates the direction of the flame now circling around his body. 

Before he can do so much as twitch as finger, I launch my blade into its forehead and he drops to the cave’s hard rock floor. The circle of flames dissipates into the damp air and only the smoke remains.

“What in the Gods’ heavens above was that?” exclaims Christopher, exasperated.

“A goblin mage.” I reply, calm as ever. “I have six to your guys’ one.”

 


Submitted: December 10, 2019

© Copyright 2022 Mason McAtee. All rights reserved.

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