Mountain of the Daemon’s

Blackness enveloped him, he blinked his eyes but no vision returned. His tongue felt swollen in his dry mouth and his throat made a dry clicking noise as he tried to swallow. He tried to lift an arm but they remained fixed at his sides. A turn of the head yielded the same response. ‘Had I done so wrong in my past that Gorgaroth has punished me?’ He thought, the giant had crushed him, shattered him yet he fought on to his dying breath taking the monstrosity to his grave, had it not been enough for Gorgaroth? Despair was quickly rising in him, his heart beating faster. Wait, his heart? He took a deep breath and took in cold, clean air with no sense of pain. The stories spoke of a life without the need of mortal trappings, no water, no food and no air. So why was he breathing?

“Hello,” He called out, his voice cracked and husky no more than a harsh bark. He coughed and tried again. The call echoed around him but no response. Yet he felt someone was there, lurking in the blackness. “I know you are there, I may be dead but my senses are just as keen as they were when I walked on the soil.”

The laugh was quiet, not mocking his statement but finding amusement in it, he felt movement to his right, the air swirling and creating a draft over his skin. ‘Naked, I am naked in the black.’ He realized. “And how do you come by this conclusion that you are dead Lucan of Aldemar.” The woman’s voice was soft. He sensed that she was very close now. “Do you not breathe? Do you not taste the air about you?” A hand, as gentle as the air brushed along his fingers, wrist and up his arm. “Do you not feel? Then how did you decide you were dead?”

“I cannot see and I cannot move these are the traits of death. If I can see and I can move then I implore you to make it so.” Sun light, strong and powerful appeared as a heavy cloth was pulled from his face. His head was still held rigid as was the rest of his body, but he had his sight back for what it was worth. The ceiling was visible, stone work held firm only one wall could be seen which led him to believe he was in a large room. The sunlight was from behind him, a window. “I cannot move.” He said.

A face appeared above him, red hair tied back, full lips and pale grey eyes. “Your wounds needed time to heal. Restraints had to be used once the fever and delirium had taken hold of you.” He felt both her hands running across his body. Pushing gently at his ribs then to his abdomen, he felt one finger run along a scar that he could not remember having before. “I shall remove the restraints, but try not to move too much.” He felt the leather bindings begin to loosen around his legs and thighs. “You have been asleep a long time.”

The woman was actually a girl not much older than eighteen Lucan guessed, helped him sit up which had seemed to be such a chore as if he were new to sitting up. “How do you know my name?” Lucan asked.

“When the delirium took control you were like a mad man, screaming your name and the names of your fathers and that you would take revenge on all.” She went on to explain how they had to grapple him to the ground and knock him unconscious before they could strap him to the table. Lucan winced with embarrassment but the girl took it as a signal of pain and tried to lie him back down.

“No, no I am fine, the delirium thankfully is blocked from my memory I apologize for my outbursts,” He placed one unsteady foot down feeling the cold stone beneath, then his other foot before raising himself. The girl steadied him as best she could he stood over six feet tall. He noticed his nakedness and reached to cover himself.

The girl laughed, “I may be a girl but I am aware of the male form, you do not embarrass me.” He looked at her and finally took in what she was wearing. She wore a sheer gown that fastened high on the neck and ran to her feet where it trailed a few inches onto the stone ground. What was surprising was how see through it was. Her breasts were perfectly round, with dusky pink nipples and he could make out a full bush that matched the girl’s hair colour. “As you can see, we of the house of Dianna are not easily embarrassed.”

He had begun to harden at the sight of her form but at the mention of the house he reflexively pulled away from her, his right hand going to his waist looking for the hilt of his sword exposing his slightly engorged penis. Lucan’s eyes flicked to the window, how high were they, could he jump and survive.

“You have heard of our House then.” The voice came from the left, a stout wooden door had been opened and a woman stood there, her blonde hair pulled back behind her head. She wore the same sheer gown the sunlight revealing her nakedness underneath. Two other women entered the room, dressed the same as the blonde woman except they held long deadly spears. “Lucan of Aldemar welcome to the house of Dianna.”

They left the room and while the girl had gone in one direction Lucan walked with the woman who had introduced herself as Cazadora, High priestess of Dianna. The guards stayed close behind. They had handed him one of the gowns which barely fit his frame, the house of Dianna was one of only a handful of all female houses. Dianna was one of the old gods, she stood shoulder to shoulder with Gorgaroth at the birth of the world, some of the older tomes even dared to name Dianna as the mother of the world, Gorgaroth filling her womb with his seed and the world birthed from between Dianne’s legs. That was before the Crusaders had burned such tomes. Yet people still believed and witches as they were commonly known in Aldemar still worshiped the goddess and practiced what was surely dark magic. And here he was Lucan, Crusader of Aldemar trapped inside their coven awaiting a terrible fate.

Cazadora spoke with ease as she told him how he was brought there by three of her priestess’. Death had been encircling him but they had managed to fix what they could before the fever and delirium. “I had my doubts when you were brought here, so I apologize to you for not having faith in a Crusader.” She said eyeing him up and down as they walked. Once he was there they had worked a spell to keep him under while his body healed and they had helped where possible with elixirs and more potent spells. He was surprised to hear he had been under for almost six months, no wonder he had felt so weak.

As they walked Lucan looked out of the open arched windows that lined the corridor, the sky was a deep blue and a snow capped mountain range rose in vicious peaks towards it. The two largest peaks, Daemon’s Horns dominated the skyline. They had taken him south from the battlefield all the way to the land’s end. As they walked priestess’s of all ages and ilk bowed gently and whispered “mother” to Cazadora, to some she stopped for a moment resting a hand on their head a silent prayer moving her lips before they carried on.

They finally reached a great oak door adorned with engraved shapes of huntresses riding on giant steeds. Here another guard stood and like the two trailing them held a long deadly tipped spear at the sight of the High priestess the guard unbolted the door and opened it. Only Cazadora and Lucan entered. The door shut firmly behind them, the sound of the bolt engaging was muffled by the thick wood.

This was Cazadora’s own chambers, to one side lay a large bedstead opposite which was an archway that led into another room which Lucan peered into. Books lined most of the walls and in the centre a small table and chair, a candle burnt brightly yet no wax dripped from it. “Many of those books would be lost to time had we not rescued them from war, famine and the less enlightened who walk this world.” Lucan said nothing, letting the remark roll off him as he studied the room. “You are not marked for death Lucan of Aldemar. We would not waste our time healing you simply to kill you, so your time spent looking for a weapon or an escape are wasted”

Lucan let himself smile at this. ‘A Witch she may well be but a warrior most certainly.’ he thought. “Then why am I here?” he asked out loud.

She smiled, “Our Goddess Dianna simply wants the return of items that are precious to her house.” She stood only a bit shorter than him and when she stepped closer to him their eyes were almost level. “Your Crusaders have taken possession of items that are very dear to us and we want you to return them.” She circled him one hand trailing across him, touching his skin and muscle beneath the fabric of the gown. “What the Crusaders took, a Crusader shall return.” She stood directly behind him. He turned his head slightly trying to catch a glimpse of her. His body tensed as he waited for the feel of cold steel at his back. It never came.

Instead he felt both her hands run up his back and over his shoulders, they slipped down his arms, momentarily she let go only to place her hands on either side of his waist. “And if I refuse?” He asked hoarsely, he tried to control himself, but felt his penis stiffening the more her touch lingered on him.

The laugh turned his blood cold. “A cursed man does not walk from this House easily.” He spun round, grabbing both her wrists. She let out a gasp of surprise at his speed rather than the vice like grip. “You are a free to return our items as you see fit, but I am Cazadora, high priestess of Dianna and I see far. The moment you deviate from the path or attempt to rid yourself of the curse you will die, painfully.” Her smile wavered as his grip tightened. It had been risky placing the elixir onto her palms but she had no other choice, he simply would have walked away. Cazadora needed a guarantee, something to control him by, something more than a curse and now the thin layer of elixir that she had rubbed into his back would provide her a backup. “The deal cannot be undone. Killing me will not bring an end to the curse only a quicker end to your own life.”

He let go of her wrists and turned away from her. Lucan could feel a tingling across his back where the witch had placed her hands. It started off small and localized but already it had begun spreading. Cazadora went to speak but he swung back round delivering a harsh slap to her face, she stumbled backwards hand clutching out at a chair to steady herself. “Save that anger for the thieves,” She tasted blood on her lips, “three items must be returned and the curse will be lifted.” She straightened herself up and stepped close to him again, feeling Lucan’s anger like a wave breaking across her she reached out and touched one of his powerful arms, he flinched then relaxed. “It has been a long time for you Lucan of Aldemar,” Her voice suddenly so soft and warm “Away from home, fighting, killing with no rest and no comforts,” Her hand slipped down his arm, onto the scar that was the only physical remnant left from the fight with the giant. “The house of Dianna is a lonesome place also.” Her hand went lower still across his thigh.

Lucan turned facing her fully, he took hold of her by her arms and she saw the anger there in his eyes but also lust. He wanted nothing more than to break her neck yet unknown to him the heat of the elixir was doing strange things. He stared at the witch, thoughts of killing her conflicted with thoughts of having her, spreading her across her bed and burying himself deep into her. His eyes dropped taking in her ample breasts and dark nipples that were already hardening. His kiss was forceful. He held her close, hands tightening on her arms, her tongue explored his mouth. She let out a yelp when he bit down and broke from his grip she took a single step backwards. He followed and pulled at her gown, ripping it away in one motion exposing her body fully.

They embraced again, kissing harder, she broke the kiss and nuzzled at his neck nipping and biting across his neck and shoulder her nails dragged across his back and arms she could feel his cock rigid against her belly and reached down to grip it. She gave it a hard yank eliciting a small moan and gasp.

Lucan spun Cazadora around, her arms saving her from falling face first onto her bed, she felt his rough hands on her hips and then one leg kicking her own apart. “Just what I expected from a lowly farmer of Aldemar,” she spat over her shoulder “Rutting like animals.” He grunted a laugh and landed a stinging slap across one buttock. She felt his engorged cock head rub across her slick opening and pushed back letting it slip in. Lucan held still for a moment with nothing more than his cock head inside the witch. “Is that all you have farmer, I expected at least a bit of…” Her sentence cut short her breath caught in her throat as he pushed forward filling her up until he was completely buried in her.

He held her hips and began long slow thrusts, pulling almost all the way out before driving it home again. Cazadora panted and moaned with each thrust, by now both were slick with sweat and her own sex was a mire of juices, he kept going feeling the witch getting closer to her peek. Cazadora’s breath became shorter her hips bucked back against Lucan. With each thrust he landed a slap to a buttock. Cazadora let out a long moan almost a wail and Lucan felt his own cock begin to spasm deep inside her, he had no time, simply held Cazadora’s hips and buried himself as deep as possible as he unloaded stream after stream of cum inside her.

Lucan pulled his now deflating cock from Cazadora who in turn turned and collapsed on her back onto the bed breathing in gulps of air her body shook and she laughed quietly, Lucan shook his head, unsure what had come over him so violently and why he felt a slight knot in his stomach.

Dracon Castle, Dolan.

Leaving the War room with Golman at his side Rosen had asked in hushed tones. “Are you the one to take my life Golman?”

Golman’s deep laugh echoed around the cavernous Throne room. “Not me Rosen, but be weary from now on.” He slowed his pace and looked down at the Captain, “Many claim to be your men but to the King they are sworn first and last. I will choose those who will come to Timeros, ones that have proven themselves in battle. But you have a more pressing engagement. But I say again be wary.” Rosen nodded and walked quickly down the throne room his heart beat drowning out the sound of his echoing footsteps.

Oundle felt comfort in the stables it was a life she had known before marrying the then Prince Balestre. Her own Father was a mighty lord but one of the people. His people had loved him and would have swum the oceans if he had asked them to. Oundle was brought up the same way believing everyone should be treated equally she had spent years in the stables tending to the horses jesting with the stable hands and even falling in love with one. But as much as she wanted it she was a Lady and had already been offered to Prince Balestre, she could not bring disrepute to her Lord Father and Mother. Oundle and Balestre were married at the turn of her sixteenth birthday. She smiled and played along with the ceremony though when she said her vows she had imagined her stable boy.

A movement in the rafters above her brought her from her dream and she looked up her breath catching as a dark figure moved fluidly between the rafters before dropping to the ground before her. Rosen pulled the black hood away from his head and Oundle’s startled face turned to one of surprise “I have been waiting up there most of the evening,” he said taking one of her hands in his own, “Your handmaid will return shortly we haven’t much time.” He leaned in a kissed her on the lips.

Oundle reached up with her free hand cupping his face, “You look worried my Stable boy,” Rosen met her eyes and Oundle’s hand slipped from his grip “He knows.” She said with a certainty. She had known it would happen but the day Farringdon Rosen had appeared in the King’s court not as the stable boy she had left behind but as a soldier of formidable repute the worry had left her within a single tear drop from her eye.

The affair had gone on for five years now, longer than either of them had expected so much so that the fear of being caught had become such a frivolous thing a folly that they joked about sometimes when they were entwined. They had been stupid and now they were to be punished. “I don’t know what he has planned, I still have my head and you are not rotting in a dark dungeon somewhere,” a whore to all the jailers and prisoners he thought sending a shudder down his back.

“Then we leave now,” Oundle sputtered out and Rosen shook his head, “We cannot stay here.”

“I leave for Timeros at first light; The King has requested my assistance in bringing his new loyal followers to heel.” Oundle stepped back, her mouth hanging open in shock, “He wants me away from you, what he has planned is far worse than death I imagine…for both of us.” He took hold of both her hands now “We run now he will track us down and the punishment will be far worse.”

“And what of me? Where shall I go?” Tears had started to spill down her cheeks.

“You must stay here, act the good Queen, sire a son if you must,” The last words tasting bitter on his tongue, “I will return, be sure of that and when I do Balestre will beg for my mercy.”

“And if you don’t return?” For that he had no answer.

He lay in his bed now a simple feather filled mattress with a single sheet draped across his body, he had cried and he had raged now he lay still looking into the blackness he feared for her life more than his own. He was to be away from her until the king beckoned his return or had grown tired of playing with Rosen and had him killed at which point he was sure Oundle would meet her own end at the hands of the king himself, if he deviated from his mission the king would have them both killed. Rosen needed time, time to plan not only his own escape but that of the Queen as well as the time to return to the north lands and collect his hidden gold. Gold that he had been hiding in the mountains waiting for the moment it would be needed. And Rosen knew that time was rapidly approaching.

As the very top of the highest tower turned red with the rising sun Captain Farringdon Rosen walked into the court yard before his waiting squad of men. Six were horse mounted with vicious swords the other six were on foot two archers and four swordsmen. Sitting at the head of the group was Golman his Steel war hammer strapped to his back “So glad you could join us Captain,” The giant bellowed a grin spread across his face. “We ride on lands that have no ruler. Here we are Kings, here we are Gods.” Golman’s smile spread even wider the last line from a book his father had read to him as a child on his lips as he handed Rosen the reins to the unseated black steed next to him.

“I still find it difficult to believe you were a child once Golman.” Rosen looked over at his companion as he mounted the horse pleased that he was not going to approach the subject that was lying heavy on Rosen’s heart. “To me you will always be the Giant that crushed Baron Fasseri’s skull between your hands.”

Golman let out one of his deep laughs, “Ah good times were those. Perhaps we will get to replay them in this new land.” He cracked the knuckles on his hands, “There are rumors that there are Crusaders that will not go easily into the afterlife hiding in towns and villages creating rebellion to the new rule.” Rosen nodded at this, he so wanted to test his might against these once feared opponents. Now that they had been shown to be mere men on a battlefield and cowardly ones at that from what other Captains and Commanders had reported back, Rosen was eager for battle. Golman leaned slightly towards Rosen his voice dropping lower than even Rosen had expected him capable of “I have picked the most loyal, we are at your command and no one else’s.”

Rosen nodded and forced a smile though felt no joy. He looked about the courtyard and up at darkened windows hoping to see her face one last time but she was nowhere to be seen. He turned to look at his men, “We ride to Timeros and to glory.” He spurred his horse as his men whooped and followed.

September 2018
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