The King, The Usurper, The Traitor
“Maybe you who condemn me are in greater fear than I who am condemned.”
The maroon citadel screamed as many men climbed down from the portcullis to the top of the building. The men and women were adorned in no colors, garbed in black clothes and dark grey platemail. The force was composed of conscripts from a foreign land, elves who had turned their sights to the traitors within the throne room.
Within the mind of Kairn the Usurper, the crimes of the Red Coyotes remained deeply embedded in his mind. He had been forced to come here and destroy them not because of a favor asked by a friend. It was to honor his fallen son whose justice always felt lacking. Yes, the men and women inhabiting Elvenesse were somewhat liable. But they had made peace many long years ago after a tumultuous war that saw the return of the Avchirran - the Wandering Wolves - a remnant order of powerful Elven soldiers who were the veterans of many wars.
Raymond, Kairn, and Avaeramos entered the throne room with their soldiers to their backs. Closeby, the scion of Savoie lay in wait and readied himself for the bloodletting that was to come with his son and retinue. Allies for centuries, since the duel between Kairn Calithil and Olivier de Savoie three centuries ago.
“No stop! They’re children!”
A woman shouted in terror before Kairn and Avaeramos struck down her relative. Kairn had smiled at her with no mirth in his eyes after lifting his visor. Minutes before, he had remarked. “And you shall join her someday too. You all will.”
“Let her go! You only want Tahlia!”
The bodies hit the floor with a soft kathunk. Bolts littered many individuals who had been put to death on the spot and the aged soldier turned. Images flashed through his mind quicker than he could hope to process and he could smell that refreshing scent of iron and sulfur in the air. He remembered the Siege of Barrowyck, he remembered the scent of burning flesh as a dock marble white burned.
The Usurper sneered and then in tandem with Avaeramos decapitated a woman upon the steps. Her head rolled down slackly, much as many others had before him in the elf’s long life. To the side of him, Olivier Helane, the Inquisitor Eternal of Azdromoth cut down two elven women who were thought complicit in the attempted seizure of the throne of Elvenesse. He laughed maniacally beneath his helmet, his fangs tense as he looked down at their bodies without mercy.
Interloper, he thought to himself. Look at you, as you have come before me. You took my heir. And you laugh about it behind closed doors. I will take you all.
The voice of the Lord of Savoy echoed out as a woman ran.
“Two birds with one stone!” He laughed.
“Kill them all!” rattled the Avchirran in a boom.
Kairn turned and almost lost himself. He knew if he let his hand fly, the woman and her child would die. His soul burned with the rage of twenty-years of pain and yet he managed to stay in his hand. There would be time to slay her after she gave birth. Perhaps he could steal her child and raise it himself to rinse their pathetic bloodline and bring it under his demesne.
The marching continued now as the Wandering Wolves brought out their hatchets and rendered the wood apart. They cast their bottles of alcohol and torches out and steered clear to watch the chaos reign. It would not be long before all those who had been complicit in the murder of Vulen Calithil were brought to justice once more.
As the docks burned in the background, The Usurper smiled and those senses of a bygone era returned to him. Crucified men and women, burning flesh, and the scent of falling timbers. He watched too as thick ropes yanked down their totem and he stepped along those ruinous docks to saddle his horse and leave with his men.