Thanks to my internet going down, I wasn’t able to make a post.
Every now and again, I feel like telling a story. So I start writing and I write and type and write and type until I either get bored or I’m ready to move onto something else. The following is something the was stuck in my head yesterday and demanded a quick telling until my sister and her girlfriend came home for a visit.
I will be honest. I was tired, dog tired, bone weary and just plain burnt out when I limped back into my guilds house this eve. King Jhotan had summoned me early in the morning and asked me to accompany a hunting party out into the Golden Peak Forest to remove a group of minotaur’s who had moved into the forest and were “being a pain”, as the good King put it.
Sometimes being stuck in His Majesty’s service while you were in training was a pain.
Our orders were to capture their leader alive and bring him in for questioning about the weapons and the people who had been disappearing into a forest that has always been a safe place for the kings people to hunt and gather in. The leaders name was Chieftain Zaarakos and he always had his shaman by his side who was one of Clan Threbek’s Soul Stealers.
I’ll admit that I groaned upon hearing this and promptly flopped onto the floor, grabbed ten candles from my pack and began whispering prayers of soul binding for each of the men standing in the hall with me. I missed the rest of our orders as a result, but I would rather properly perform my prayers than screw up in the field because I didn’t have enough to complete them or have my concentration else where while I asked the Goddess Thaleni to protect these men’s souls and borrowed her power to bind them to their bodies. I also took the time to make an offering of bulls blood to Haidan and sent his aura of strength washing over the group.
Our mission was easier said than done. Sure, it all started out nice and easy when we found the minotaur’s and quickly incapacitated or killed everyone in the camp and captured Zaarakos. It was the one hour ride home that turned into seven hours of us battling our way out of a normally calm and peaceful forest that was hard. What made it worse was the fact that in order for us to force the minotaur Chieftain to move with us, I had to bind body to my will so that he would be under my control and forced to follow me wherever I went or I would be able to do whatever I wanted with him.
Then things only got worse when we realized that it was the Shaman Soul Eater who was chasing us and directing ambush attacks that would hit our flanks and often divide our party into two. Eventually I wound up off my horse along with the two wizards in our party running behind the party and painting runes of protection and shield onto trees every fifty paces while the wizards held up invisible walls on either side of our party. That didn’t mean that we didn’t get hit and hit hard though. As much time as I spent painting ruins, I also spent fighting Zaarakos who was fighting his bonds while I tried to keep the men in my group semi-healthy and battle ready. I felt every bruise, concussion and pain the men felt in battle and I tried to take that all away from them as soon as I could find the injury. I felt their panic as I tried to keep them all flooded with a sense of calm. And it all was horrible while attached to a fighting and mean minotaur.
The final bit of fun came as we neared the edge of the forest and a clearing where a group from the Tempest hoard would be camped. As we neared the clearing I climbed back onto my horse and dug out a candle and began to pray that Tohr was in an accommodating mood and would decide to help us rather than free our minotaur prisoner. Gripping my horse between my knees, I silently chanted down the luck of my Goddess, Thaleni and slowly called and directed her protectors spirit and tried to channel it into Tohr’s spirit as I felt his being getting closer as we rode on.
“Silly child,” the minotaur Chieftain laughed behind me as he tugged at the invisible bonds that held him and forced him to march along surrounded by the five of the Kings Eagle Eye’s. “Your magic is showing,” he growled out at me on a laugh and pushed his spirit hard against the bonds I’d tied to his physical being.