Friday, November 5, 2010

House Vyre Duskguard

Xarl, Captain of the Dusk, Lord Militant of the noble house of Vyre, inhaled the bitter smoke of his cheroot and scowled at the smoldering battlefield. The day was won, and purple clad Duskguard Sentinels walked amongst the bodies killing any who were playing possum. Blue armored Invictors watched over the few captured Skorne that had survived Xarl’s onslaught. The Iosian military had taken few casualties while cutting down hundreds of the barbaric Skorne, but Xarl took no pleasure in victory.

"Sir, what are your orders regarding the prisoners?”

It was the second time the question had been asked. Xarl turned to survey the speaker, arcanist Lasa. The arcanist had dirt and blood matting his hair, and his cloak was badly burned. He had risked his life to repair the Griffon Myrmidon that had killed the Skorne general. In another army he might be considered a hero. Xarl had no time for such petty plaudits. House Vyre had discarded every award or medal after its defeat in the war of the houses to symbolize that they no longer fought for glory or pride. House Vyre only fought for revenge.

Xarl finally spoke. His voice was surprisingly soft and smooth for such a forbidding countenance. The melodic tones of his speech made his words all the more chilling.

“Kill them all. There is no reason to let savages live.”

At a nod from their captain, the Invictors began the execution, pumping shot into the base of the helpless Skorne’s skulls.

Xarl turned, discarded his smoldering fungus cigar, and began walking towards the army’s base camp. His Phoenix myrmidon followed him closely, scanning for threats. Lasa fell into line.

“Sir, there is a message from Dawnlord Vyros. He orders you to support his battle force’s advance on the Khadorian city.”

Vyros. How Xarl hated that name. The bastard who had defeated House Vyre in the civil war. Xarl had been a lowly House Guard Rifleman then, and remembered the sickening feeling of defeat as all he held dear fell to pieces around him. Vyros was a pompous fool, and Xarl despised him and his House Nyarr Dawnguard.

“Tell the Dawnlord we will comply.” Xarl smiled.

It was a kind smile, full of warmth. Until you looked at the eyes. The eyes were as cold as a soulless, though a light purple instead of the soulless black. He smiled, with bitter mirth, at the thought that he was fighting with a Ioasian he hated.

“It is funny, the things we will do for the sake of the Goddess.” The Arcanist looked at him, unsure of how to respond.

It does not seem that long ago when I witnessed Vyros strike down the man I admired most. Thirty years since I saw Ghyrrshyld fall.” Xarl spat on the ground to clear his mouth of the taste of the hated one's name. “Do you know why we are out here Lasa?”

To save the goddess?” Lasa replied mechanically.

No, it is too late. The goddess is dying, and there is nothing we can do about it. Scyrah will perish within a few generations, and Ios will fall with her. We are doomed, and there is no hope.” Xarl smiled again.

Then why do we fight alongside our enemies? Why do we help this deluded Retribution?”

Revenge. Revenge against the human scum who are killing her. Revenge against Ghyrrshyld, the man who should have saved Ios but failed because of his pride. Revenge against all of them for living while Scyrah dies. We fight”, he finished, “to make sure that when Scyrah breathes her last, the world that killed her is in flames.”

Xarl walked from the battlefield. His battered army followed. They did not know where they went, only that the enemy waited to be annihilated. Xarl and House Vyre were ready. Ready to avenge their fallen goddess.

1 comment:

  1. This is really good stuff. You have a true flare for place and pacing. Well done!

    P.S. MOAR!