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Thread: [M/IC] The Song of Excalibur

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    Default [M/IC] The Song of Excalibur

    This roleplay contains graphic violence, depictions of gore and bloodshed, uses of tobacco and alcohol, profanity and mature-related content.




    Chapter 1: The War In The North

    The siege of Latia

    Latia, the richest city in the northern regions of Arno'or, rivalled only by the wealth that has been mustered by the great city of Camelot itself. Named as the Northern Pearl, Latia became the economic center of the United Province of Grecca but there is one slight problem - it was at the edge of the kingdom itself. Located near the borders between the warring kingdoms of Camelot and Grecca, the armies who served Arthur's cause with an undying devotion saw an opportunity to cripple the nation's economy by seizing it. Thus, they marched from their capital with a force of 5 legions strong. Hundreds of banners flutter in the wind, lead by two of the Inquisitors of the Crown - Marius and Arhanion.

    It was quite unusual for them to command an army for Inquisitors are typically seen as bodyguards to the king. Though these two knights have proved their worth upon the battlefield as they could do more than just enforcing the law upon the traitors of the realm. For weeks they marched closer to Latia, engaging in several skirmishes along the way before reaching the Northern Pearl itself. Upon arrival, the legions of Camelot stand ready. Marius had heard of Lord Jachaerys' absence in Latia as he was away on a campaign against Camelot, taking much of their forces away from the city to bolster his own army's strength. The Inquisitor knew that this is a perfect chance to strike a deadly blow at the moment.

    And so, he laid siege upon Latia. The legions of Camelot then began their assault upon the walls of the city, sending several towers while their trebuchets and catapults hurled massive balls engulfed in flames to weaken the defending army. Spies have reported that only 3000 men were present to defend the walls. Marius knew that the Greccans would fight to the death to preserve their freedom and he respected them for their undying resolve. "Three thousand men would perish instantly," said Arhanion as he rode beside Marius, clad in his usual armor. His ornate bastard sword hanging on his hip, strapped with a leather belt. "Archers! Forward!" He ordered. In an instant, the horns were blown to send the orders to the rest of the army. Hundreds of footsteps stomp upon the ground as they marched, bow in hand.

    "I won't be so sure, Arhanion. Greccan are fine warriors," Marius complimented. Even they were enemies the soldiers of Grecca were trained for years for the sole purpose of preparing for war. He remembered of the lessons taught during his earlier years in the Inquisition, If one wishes for peace, it is for war they must prepare. Those words echoed in his mind as if it was uttered just a few moments ago. "Infantry, advance!" His order was responded with a collective 'Aye!' as they begin to march closer upon the walls.

    "Indeed," Arhanion agreed to his words. Even he knew that the skill of a Greccan is unmatched by the soldiers of Camelot. "But you can't deny that Grecca has the best wine, ale and women don't you think?" He said as he laughed, patting the back of his comrade. "It's quite a shame that they stood against our cause,"

    "For the crown, Arhanion. We did everything for the crown," Marius replied.

    ***



    The 42nd Army of Grecca

    Little did the two Inquisitors know that the city has sent an envoy eight days prior to the assault to request for reinforcements from the main Greccan force that are said to be marching towards the Red Fields. The envoy rode through the day and into the night upon his chestnut mare, riding as fast as the wind in hopes of reaching the commanders of Grecca in time to aid them.

    Marching upon the hills near the capital city of Aratos, otherwise known as the Keep of Scales were the great army of Grecca with a force of ten thousand strong. Armed with the unwavering resolve to defend Greccan freedom from the hands of Camelot. Arthur is annoyed by the notion of their freedom, sending an army to Kaldir to bring them to hell prompted the damnable war that brought many of the nation's finest men to the Halls of Novogarde, a place where the warriors who fought honorably and died for a noble cause should go.

    From sacred Aratos they marched. From dear Aratos to the Red Fields, the ten thousand battle hardened soldiers of Grecca marched as their banners flutter against the cold winds of the north. Many are more than eager to let their steel taste Camelot blood, for many years they desired vengeance for what they did upon the village of Kaldir. Slaughtering innocents and burning their homes to the ground is considered an unforgivable act. King Gaiseric shall never forget the atrocities done upon his countrymen and he shall let his armies became an instrument of his wrath.

    As they marched upon the hills, the spearmen were at the front, holding their iron tipped spears high as they marched in unison with their black armor, carrying the standards of their kingdom - a silhouette of a knight holding a greatsword in his hands upon a field of green - Gaiseric's own sigil. Equipped with a segmented plate armor, it provided much needed protection without hindering their movement and a short sword strapped with a leather belt, acting as a secondary weapon should their spears break or lost in the heat of battle. Behind them were the archers, though not as heavily armored as the spearmen, the archers were equipped with a strong bow and a quiver of forty steel tipped black arrows while wearing mail armor for protection.

    Flanking the archers were several cavalry units though most of them were knights clad in plate armor, carrying weapons of their own while proudly wearing the sigils of their own noble houses. Marcus Ironshield was one of the few who commanded a small band of knights carrying the sigil of his father - a crimson dragon circling a silver sword upon a black field. He rode beside his companions on the right flank where he could observe the entire army in its magnificence. Marching infront of the knights were mercenaries hired from parts of the continent, Marcus observed their behavior ever since they have left the city. Many of whom bickered and acted less than a soldier and more of a heavily armed drunken fighter. Their lack of discipline somehow irritated him as it was the core of their entire army.

    Yet, even he knew the worth of hired blades. Despite their inconsistent prices, many of the Greccan lords hired them not for their numbers but for their exceptional skills with weapons. Gunbearers or not, Marcus wished them to carry out their duty just as the rest of the army as sometimes they garnered a reputation for breaking their oaths during battle, to run away when they are in desperate need of assistance. It was one of the reasons Marcus disliked them.

    The entire army is under the command of a renowned military commander, Lord Rha'az of Dragonspear who carries his own sigil - a black dragon circling a spear upon a crimson field. Marcus was once lead by him during his earlier years serving as a part of the auxiliary force against Camelot. He made note of his bravery and confidence in battle, his skill of using the field to his advantage is unparalelled by any commander in the nation. Marcus respected him, just as much as the other nobles do.

    As he continued to march, Marcus spotted a messenger with a red ribbon strapped around his forearm - an urgent message. He rode past the infantry line and towards Commander Rha'az's own unit.

    "My lord!" The messenger said to Rha'az as he arrived at his side. The signs of exhaustion are apparent in his eyes, he rode through the night and without rest. "Latia is in need for reinforcements, Commander Rha'az. The forces of Camelot is upon us and Lord Jachaerys is expected to be away for the next few weeks. You are the closest force to our city, we request for your aid." He spoke in an urgent tone, handing over a rolled parchment tied with a red thread.

    "How many men are there in your garrison? How many of the enemy's forces? Who led them?" Rha'az asked, looking at the young bald man in the eye as his army continued to march.

    "Twenty thousand strong my lord. We only have a small portion of our garrison left to defend the walls whenever the assault begins. They were however, under the command of two Inquisitors." The messenger replied.

    Rha'az remained silent, his mind begins to think of a solution. Losing Latia would certainly strike a devastating blow to Grecca and Camelot would gain a significant advantage from seizing the Northern Pearl. He turned to one his knights, "Get me Ironshield," he said. "And also Godfrey's daughter. We have much to discuss,"

    His knight nodded and rode into the ranks of the army immediately after he was ordered.

    ***


    The castle of Irongaunt

    Irongaunt, a magnificent castle built by Lord Cromwell, the founder of the noble House of Rhoyse after the end of the Dakoric War which ended in the death of Prince Maqar who led the invading forces. It was the castle where the famous Red Axe was kept, the legendary weapon of Lord Cromwell himself and it was passed down from generation to generation as an heirloom. Now the castle belongs to Lord Eli Rhoyse who commands the 32nd Army of Camelot in the war against the Greccans. Within its ranks were the infamous Ironhearts, a group of soldiers that possesses some rather..."unique" traits that helped to excel on the battlefield.

    Among the hundreds of soldiers that were stationed at Irongaunt was Cassius Raco, the Sword of the Night and stood out from the rest of the army for possessing a jet black skin with a white mane which flows down his back like a stream of water. He sat inside the smithy's tent, sharpening his throwing knives with the whetstone as the rest of the soldiers have decided to drink, train or even sleep with the ladies of Irongaunt.

    "You sure you don't want to join the rest of the soldiers feasting like they just won a battle, Cassius?" An old man asked, despite his old age he seemed muscular. He stands quite shorter than Cassius but possessing just as much strength as he is or even stronger than the young man. His copper tanned skin sweats as he works on a piece of armor that is needed to be repaired, "You should get out there and release some of your tension, Cassius. Sharpening your weapons all day isn't fun you know." The old smith continued, hammering upon a piece of armor on his anvil. Sparks flew across the floor as he struck his hammer down upon the hot steel.

    Cassius smirked, "The same can be said about you, Old Ben. Hammering that damned thing all day isn't fun. You're the one who should go out and sleep with the maidens," he slipped his knife into his pocket before pulling out another. His black sword, Sorrow remained on his side, leaning against a rack of swords. Cassius laid his eyes upon it and remembered the days where he would tore a bloody path through enemy lines to get to their commander.

    "I'm too old to fuck with them. But drinking wine and ale? Eating all the damned pork? That's the life. Although I'd rather a couple maidens at my bed," Old Ben bursts into laughter as he said those words, seizing a bottle of wine from the table beside him and took a gulp of it. "I'm too goddamned old to be in the front lines just like you Cassius, though a part of me feels glad that I'm no longer holding a sword to take another's life."

    "Even for the king's cause?" Cassius turned and asked as he stopped sharpening the blade of his knife.

    Old Ben nodded. "I've been fighting my whole life, young lad. I'm tired of continuing that old life of mine. All things must have an end, they said. I guess involving myself in the midst of bloodshed has ended a long time ago,"
    Last edited by Rha'az; 11-23-2018 at 12:23 PM. Reason: Minor grammatical and name corrections
    "May the great Twelve have mercy on us all," - Marius, Inquisitor of the Crown

    Spoiler: Random stuff 

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    Among the many Ironhearts training in the courtyard, a portion formed a sparse and uncoordinated circle of men and women around two figures. Some were cheering, some simply stood by and watched, but all their eyes were on the two grappling in the middle.

    One of them, the one struggling on the ground, was a man who looked to be hanging onto his last vestiges of youth. The light welts and bruises on his face only highlighted the creases and wrinkles that were only just starting to form.

    The other figure, currently raining blows down onto his face, was a spry lass. Her face was still rather youthful, freckled, and only slightly worse for wear than that of the man below her.

    The man flailed, struggled, and shifted his weight in an attempt to shake the girl off. He was bigger and stronger, and managed to land some solid hits, but she was nimble and was quick to pin him down again when he broke free. This went on for about half a minute more before the girl countered a wayward attempt at a punch and slipped under, putting the man in a hold that threatened to pull his shoulder loose from its socket. The man grunted in pain for a few seconds before his resolve finally broke.

    "Yield! I yield!" The man hissed through his teeth, tapping hard at the girl's foot.

    At this signal, she loosened her grip and rolled onto her feet, panting hard. Beads of sweat rolled down from her short, puffy black hair and onto her temples. A short but loud sigh escaped her lips as she looked up at the sky to stretch her back. "Now then, Guy, what's the score now?"

    The man laid still, almost like a corpse, as he tried to regain his breath. Looking blankly at the sky as well, he mumbled. "Forty... Forty-seven for me now, and uh... Thirty-eight-- no, thirty-nine for you now after today's round, I believe." His opponent let out a barely audible grunt in frustration. "Oh come on now, don't be so down! You just have to win, say, nine more times in a row and we'll be even! Hah! You may be the fiery Calliope herself, but when it comes--"

    "Yes, yes, when it comes to the ring, you're the man to beat, I've heard it all too many times now, give it a rest," the girl interjected. She reached out a hand and helped her opponent up, then looked around at the others watching. Her gloved hand raised up and waved a small circle in the air, signalling a break in training. "Two hours rest! Make good use of it! I'll be in the mess hall." With that, a group of about twenty or so Ironhearts broke off and began to scatter from the courtyard.

    "Come on then, mess hall. Much drink and feast to be had, eh?" Guy said with a smile.

    "I would like that," Calliope replied. "You should go ahead, though, I've some business to attend to with Raco." She looked into the distance and put a leather-clad finger to the small cut on her lip, no doubt from when Guy caught her square in the mouth with a blow.

    Some time later, Calliope found herself at the smithy's tent. Both Cassius Raco and Old Ben were inside, sharing a drink and a chat. As a sign of both manners and respect, she stood straight at the entrance and cleared her throat just loudly enough to catch their attention. "Old Ben," she smiled, bowing slightly to greet him. "Sir Cassius," she blurted, saluting as she did so. "Do pardon my intrusion but I've something on my mind and I intend to get answers."

    The noblewoman cleared her throat once again and stood straight, turning to face Raco. "I see you're in the middle of a conversation with Old Ben here, so I won't take up much of your time. I'm simply here to ask if you've heard any word from the front yet. Our brothers are out there fighting for the king, and we-- We, the so-dreaded Iron Legion, are just sitting here holed up in Irongaunt."

    As she spoke, her calm demeanor began to show signs of turning. Her voice raised ever so slightly, not at anyone in particular, but simply out of conviction. "Every minute we spend here is a minute wasted. We've already spent gods know how long training, and training can only get us so far! The sooner we mobilize, the sooner we can end this war. We have a duty to fulfill, and it is NOT in this castle, but out there. Out there, where we should be trampling Greccan soil under our boots! WE--" Calliope cut herself short and took a pause to recompose herself. Once again, she cleared her throat and resumed her civil demeanor. "... But I digress. I simply think the men are ready to mobilize. The whelps could use their first taste of battle as well."

    She sighed and loosened up a tad. "Do pardon the outburst, I suppose it's just the cabin fever setting in..."
    Last edited by Ma1chbox; 11-21-2018 at 03:09 PM. Reason: Minor grammar fixes
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    In one of the Military Camps of Grecca, A Lady with A long white silvery hair kneeled at a make shift altar located in one of it's many tents. Her hands were clasped together, head bowed.

    "Our God Almighty Valerios. This subject appeals for your guidance and protection for our bretheren risking their lives on the battlefield, our family that are waiting for us to come home and all of the people under the jurisdiction of Grecca. Fill our men with courageous heart, sharp mind and the will to overcome any obstacles in front of us that we may live another day to protect everything that we held dear close to us. In your mighty name we pray. Amen."

    Adriana Irise Godfrey slowly opened her eyes along with the people solemnly praying with her. Their eyes were filled with conviction and determination to protect the land that they call home, Grecca. She was about to stand up and address the men with her when a sound of footsteps, running urgently came from outside. The lapel of the tent swayed with great force as the person rushed inside.

    "Milady Godfrey, Commander Rha'az of the 52nd Legion Immediately commands your presence at Latia. We received Intel that Camelot Inquisitors are almost knocking among our doors. This messenger beseeches you to immediately heed the command."

    The messenger reported while kneeling down. He took from his pouch a token of Commander Rha'az to prove the authenticity of the message. Adriana's face was marred with a frown. She rose up from her kneeling position and went towards the messenger. She took the token and inspect it and confirmed that it was the real deal.

    "Men lead this good sir to rest for a while. It must been quite a ride from here and Latia."

    She ordered two of her guards. The two guards bowed in confirmation and lead the messenger out to be fed to give him energy for the incoming ride. Adriana released a sigh and stared at her men. Consisting the two heads of her troops and their most trusted aide.

    "You heard the messenger men! Immediately assemble all our forces. Contact the logistics and make sure that all the horses and our wagons are in top shape. Also note that our rations shouldn't be compromised."

    Adriana commanded and dismissed the men's bowing in front of her. She gave the insignia of Valerios a glance and prayed a quick prayer before leaving the tent. The outside were filled with men disassembling Military tent's and gearing Up. She walked towards her tent and wore her armor given to her by her father and had her sword fastened to her hips. After the she immediately walked outside to help the others with the packing.

    An hour passed and all the tent and wagons are lined up. Cavalry and foot men were already geared up to their teeth. One of the attendant brought her her steed that has a coat black as the night sky and mounted it.

    "We will now leave for Latia. The majority of the cavalries will rush towards Latia. The remaining cavalries will protect the rations and march along with the footmen. I expect that you will arrived their not later than what i expected."

    She spoke as she steadied her mount in front of the army. Her men shouted a large yes at her words.

    "Now we immediately move out."

    She added. The thundering hooves of horses were heard echoing from the forest at the cavalries under Adrian rushed towards Latia. Her gripped on the reins tightened as she felt the aura of war looming from the distance.
    Last edited by Lleona; 11-21-2018 at 10:40 AM.
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    "Quintilius! Gaiseric's army is in sight!"

    A silver-plumed rider galloped over the hill back to his marching brothers. They had traversed the mountains to link up with the bulk of the royal army. Their few numbers, only seventy-two strong, would prove easy pickings on the now-lawless plains around Aratos.

    In the last day, they had rode like the wind. Quintilius' Ghathi-styled beard was still covered with snow and the shieldmaidens surrounding him were still shivering. It was good to be out of the cold and back on green pastures.

    "Graces. Send word to our final echelon, I will ride out with the chosen vanguard."

    Quintilius turned his head to a wild-looking younger Greccan with a larger silver plume bursting out of his helmet than most.

    "Milos, keep the Argent under eyes and make pace for the Gaisericians. Though mind your distance! The hirelings are often inbred."

    "Ala, Quintilius!"

    Milos responded by smashing his spear against his oversized shield. A whistle later, the Argentinian commander rode out to meet the Dragonspear, the field marshall of the Gaiserician forces, along with a small entourage of his most heavily armored hoplites, who were all women of Norsenic descent.

    Quintilius and the shieldmaidens could easily catch up with the slow-moving army. They passed the auxiliary, the footsoldiers, and then the knights underway to the front guard. Quintilius shouted a mark of defiance at a semi-familiar banner: "Ironshield, my fellow half-breed! May the crimson dragon engulf your western heritage with flame for their impotence!" With a smile on his face and several shieldmaidens staring the knights of Ironshield down, Quintilius continued to the command column.

    In the corner of Rha'az' eye, a handsomely bearded purple-plumed warrior rode up. His lightweight battle cuirass and traditional T-visored helmet reminded one of the days of Ghath but his energy felt very modern, supplemented by the tough-looking and flail-wielding foreign shieldmaidens who trailed him. Quintilius, for once, took off his purple-plumed helm and shouted at his new commander-in-chief.

    "Rha'az the Horse Slayer!"

    The smuggish Argentinian passed his helmet to the next shieldmaiden and spoke to the horizon.
    "I am Quintilius of Argentos, second son to Helena the Essarch, first of the Argentinian Fraulanx." Though proudly spoken, his introduction rang like a tiresome ritual. "I come with seventy Norsenic steeds, each seated with an Argentinian hoplite, courtesy of our polis." His smug, though very present, was more level-headed than the traditional Argentinian. Perhaps it were his foreign genes.

    He continued, after a nod at the acknowledgement of the Dragonspear himself.

    "The remainder of our legion is on foot, and will arrive at the Red Fields three days late." He intentionally did not mention the numbers. "Would we join column?"

    In hushed tones, the shieldmaidens were already exchanging Norsenic insults to the front line of the King's army as soon as they noticed foreign women underneath traditional Ghathi helmets. Argentos was a mountain city just off the coast of the Thretian Sea - it was not custom for an Argentinian to take part in a large army, let alone for the Fraulanx.
    Last edited by Q; 11-22-2018 at 01:55 AM. Reason: More detail jammed into elongated sentences, like the old latins did

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    "Captain Ironshield!" A knight of Commander Rha'az's household called out to the halfbreed as he approached upon his steed. The emblem of Dragonspear emblazoned upon the man's silver chestplate, wearing a full faced helm with an upright crest dyed in blue. "The commander wishes to speak to you," he said.

    Marcus could only nod and rode alongside him. He left his knights and towards the rear of the army where the commander is positioned alongside the rest of the commanding officers. He saw the banners of Dragonspear fluttering against the cold winds of the north and approached him. He raised a clenched fist upon his heart as he saluted the commander, "Commander Rha'az," he said as he bowed his head before turning to a familiar man who held a reputation for leading unique troops on the battlefield, "Quintilius," he greeted.

    Rha'az kept an eye upon the forces of Godfrey as they immediately marched for Latia. His lips curled into a wrinkled smile, "Eager as ever," he remarked. He took off his wolf shaped helm, his cat-like eyes were different than those of a Greccan as he too was a halfbreed much like Marcus and Quinitilius. His copper tanned skin made him stand out from the rest of people but it didn't made him who he was today. "Have the rest of the Phalanx remained in reserve, sharpen their spears and swords. Keep them eager for battle, Quintilius." He said to the Argentinian before he turned to Marcus. "Ironshield, we have a situation."

    Marcus tilted his head, "What is it commander?" He asked. The strength of the main Greccan army is considerable enough, armed with not only the finest weapons that the nation had to offer but also the unwavering resolve to shed blood in the name of vengeance. Vengeance of Kaldir, as some would say. Ten thousand men ready to fight, ten thousand men ready to die.

    "Latia," the commander spoke. "Twenty thousand men marched upon the city. The garrison was considered too small to be able to withstand an assault. Even if they do, this won't be another Battle at the Narrow Pass." He continued. His words reflected his calm demeanor despite of the dire situation that he spoke of. Even at the worst of times, Rha'az managed to remain stoic and not let his own emotions get the better of him. "As you see, Lady Godfrey marched with 2,000 men of her own towards Latia. It may be too late but we still have a chance of saving the city,"

    Marcus looked at Adriana's forces that have left the army in haste. A large number of the ten thousand men were ordered towards Latia in its defense. "But why don't we march towards Latia by ourselves? With ten thousand of our finest men, we would be able to drive the damned Camelots back to their lands!" Says the Ironshield.

    "If our whole army went for Latia and the Red Fields remained unprotected, the bulk of the enemy's forces would easily go through our lands without competition." Rha'az argued, spitting on the ground. "It's better to split our forces so that a large portion of our men defends the Red Fields and engage the Camelot army. Two thousand men is more than enough to reinforce Latia's three thousand soldiers. Besides..." he said as he puts on his helm back. "...we are Greccans. Quintilius! How many of your soldiers can you send for Latia's aid?" He turned to the Argentinian.

    ***

    Cassius listened to Calliope's words as she speak. There is an air of silence as words left her lips. Her unpredictable outbursts made the lady dangerous on the battlefield, even more so as a commander. The Sword of the Night made note of this as he had heard of her tales that made her rose through the ranks. But she was right, standing and train all day won't secure a victory for Camelot. They are after all, the Iron Legion - one of the most deadliest legions that the kingdom has to offer to their enemies.

    "I'm pretty sure that an order will be - " Old Ben tried to speak. But his words were interrupted by a voice coming from outside the tents.

    Cassius stood from his seat and sheathes his dagger, taking up Sorrow as he walked outside. He saw the eyes of the soldiers looking at a single direction, or rather at a single man who rides upon his white stallion. His golden armor glints at the rays of the sun as his face was covered by a lion shaped helm, complemented with his own shoulder pauldrons shaped in the same beast.

    Lord Eli Rhoyse emerged from his castle with the famed Red Axe carried on his back. He wore a silver armor and his cloak was made out of a wolf's skin. "Lord Inquisitor," the lord of Irongaunt greeted and bowed his head. "What brings you to Irongaunt?" Lord Eli said, crossing his arms as he speaks.

    "You have new orders. Send your army down to Skalagos and a few men to Westerstorm to quell the uprising." The man speaks with a cold voice as he stares down at Lord Eli upon his steed. The Lord Inquisitor is the man who leads the infamous Inquisitors of the Crown, a knighthood order who mainly acts as law enforcers. He exudes a deathly chill, as if his cold eyes were carved from a glacier.

    "As you wish, Lord Inquisitor," he responded.

    Without a word, he left the castle. Cassius' eyes remained upon the mysterious man, wondering who he was beneath the helm. It was then he realized that he not alone, the Lord Inquisitor was accompanied by the Deadly Seven - the deadliest of the Inquisitors that served the crown dutifully for many years. They carry an armor with a darker shade of gold, with hoods of black and masks covered their faces, only their ashen eyes are to be seen.

    Eli took a deep breath and lets out a sigh of relief as the Lord Inquisitor has left his castle. He didn't feel fear for the man, yet he felt unease just because the man was shrouded in mystery. He took a deep breath and turned to one of the soldiers, "Get me Cassius, Calliope and Farram. Ask them to meet me in the War Room inside the castle,"

    The young soldier nodded and disappeared into the camps to search of the ones summoned by Lord Eli.
    "May the great Twelve have mercy on us all," - Marius, Inquisitor of the Crown

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    Quintilius kept his distance from the commanders, fearing his untimely demise. It was not his idea to join the royal army. Alas, he got called for, just as he signaled the Fraulanx to return to the rest of the seventy-two riders from Argentos. He politely answered his commander.

    "As spoken, we are seventy-two strong, milord."
    Inside, he despised the thought of splitting his forces.
    "Among us is a nobleman who will fill his duty willingly, were the Phalanx to split."
    The Argentinian knew the Phalanx were more suited for battle at the Red Fields. He feared the melee around Latia. He had visited the city often and it was, though larger in size, very comparable to Argentos itself. He reluctantly made up his mind to ride for Latia, the northern Pearl, and let the Field Marshall decide the rest.

    "I will ride out with all my kin to Latia - our Norsenic steeds will hasten to sir Godfrey's within the hour. Send word to Milos of Argentos if in need of Argentinians at the Red Fields. You will recognize the man by his large silver peacock's plume."

    Quintilius turned to one of the Fraulanx. "Sifra!" His purple-plumed helmet got tossed in his hands. "Haste for Latia! Alala!"

    "Ala, skipari!" All of the twelve Fraulanx surrounding them slammed their shields.

    After the horn of Argentos howled through the Greccan hills, Quintilius and his entourage galloped in chase of Lady Godfrey's forces, eventually followed by sixty more Argentinian riders.


    ***

    Quintillius and the Fraulanx caught up with Godfrey's two-thousand men. The plating of the knights eyed far more protective than his traditional battle armor. He frowned. At least they were suited for an all-out war in the north.

    "Horseman!" Quintilius tiredly barked at a horsed squire while being flanked by his Fraulanx. "Where can I find ser Godfrey?"

    "We are under the grace of Lady Adriana Irise Godfrey-Bennet!" the squire replied. "Found at the front vanguard, milord!"

    "Lady, you say?" He regained his composure and straightened his helmet.

    The toughest of the Fraulanx, Brynkvinna, hushed "Kveldúlfr na rhaza..." at her sisters-in-arms as an insult at their Argentinian commandant's predictable behavior. The twelve of them burst out in loud laughter, making Quintilius' frown even deeper. "Thank you, ser knight. Ala!"

    Quintilius and the Fraulanx rode further up the column until they reached the front of yet another march. The amount of banners nearly blocked the horizon.

    "Lady Godfrey!"

    "I am Quintilius of Argentos, second son to Helena of Essarch, first of the Fraulanx."
    Oh, how he preferred riding in the mountains with his warband...
    "The silver towers send aid to defend the northern pearl!"
    Last edited by Q; 11-22-2018 at 06:50 PM.

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    Adriana rushed her horse towards latia, the wind caressing her hair. The army was filled with vigor, blood already boiling from the distant call of war. She had participated in some skirmishes before and came up victorious. But this is the first time she's about to battle on a bigger scale. Latia was guarded by 3000 soldiers and along with her 2000 men, the plan was to solidify the border. But with just 5000 people, planning to contend with the iron-shield with just these numbers and coming on top is a far fetched idea. Fortunately, they held the upper hand at the terrain and positioning of their camp. With 20 thousand men, battling on distant places puts a heavy burden towards the supplies. If maybe she can find some men that can destroy the supply routes this battle might become a war of attrition and the one who can survive longer wins. But that idea is not yet feasible without suitable personnel. Adriana released a sigh and strengthened her mind once more, she was the leader of this group. She can't be fainthearted. Burning determination replaced the momentarily feelings of weakness in her earlier.

    "Even if the chance of winning are sliver, i broke right through it and grab that chance. Those camelots will pay for their treachery!"

    Adriana whispered her tone at the end becoming more ruthless and cold. She and her company were rode for a rode great distance as for her other soldiers they were a little bit in a distance and was catching up. After running for a while the need to have the horses rest came. As they were currently headed into battle they cannot tire their steed too much lest it causes more trouble in the battlefield.

    When they were about to rest, a group of seventy plus people came into view being headed by a mascularish man, face hidden by a purple plume T-visor came. Adriana watched as her men let the other through and finally reaching her. Her appearance was set in her passive cold face, and when the man appeared it didn't even twitched a little bit, it didn't look welcoming nor did it look a him in a hostile manner.

    The man introduced himself as Quintillus of Argentos, second son to Helena of Essarch, first of the fraulanx. Adrian felt that this kind of greetings were tiring and pompous but she will reciprocate the other as a sign of her good faith.

    "Adriana Irise Godfrey, first daughter of Duke Adrian Will Godfrey. It is good to have you in company."

    Adriana greeted back with her smooth femininish voice which felt out of place among the hoarse voices of people in the army. But her soldiers had grown use to it cause even though Lady Adrian shouted and commanded them a lot of time her voice just doesn't change, it still sound like the voices of noble lady that grew pampered in the capital, they just don't know if this kind of thing will bother the new people.

    "Does Ser Quintilius bear more orders from Commander Rha'az?"

    She asked as she got down of her mount and took the water and food that a squire had passed to fed her mount. As she fed it she stroke its mane and coat lovingly, after all this was her companion it gone through life and death situation for her.
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    As Cassius exited the tent, Calliope followed. The commotion outside had piqued her curiosity as well. All eyes in the area were focused on a single figure and his entourage. At a single glance, Calliope immediately recognized their distinct armor. They were Inquisitors, no doubt, who have surely come to deliver much-awaited orders.

    The figure at the lead, who she recognized as the Lord Inquisitor, bore golden lion motifs on his armor. The way they caught the sun's rays and glinted in the light greatly inspired Calliope, whose own family coat of arms was a silver lion head. For a moment, she envisioned herself among their ranks. "The silver lion shall lead the golden, and strike true at the heart of evil," she mumbled to herself, but quickly snapped out of her daydream before anyone could notice.

    Calliope looked on and watched as Lord Eli Rhoyse came out to meet the lord inquisitor. She was too far away to be able to hear the two, but a grin formed on her face. She knew they were discussing the next plan of action for the 32nd army. At this point, she didn't need to see any more than she already did. As she hurriedly walked away, she turned to Raco and bowed slightly. "I'll be taking my leave. See you in the war room, then."

    Guy was gorging himself on slices of ham and a tankard of ale, when the door to the mess hall burst open to reveal Calliope scanning the room. When they locked eyes, she immediately called out from across the room. "Guy, ready the men! Be ready to depart in half an hour!" With that, the noblewoman was gone as fast as she had appeared.

    Guy, still slightly shaken from the suddenness, finally came to and snapped to attention. He turned to the others in the mess hall under Calliope's command and yelled out. "You heard her! Finish your business and be ready to sortie! Gather at the quarters, then march to the square!" The men and women of Calliope's detachment immediately shot up and exited the mess hall. After all, they knew better than to incur her wrath by messing up a direct order.

    In the meantime, Calliope had gone to her own quarters to change from her dust-stained training garments and into her combat gear. After strapping her pavise to her back, she took her famed weapon, the Lance of Longinus, out of its protective lockbox. She lightly kissed the ornate arquebus and bowed her head in prayer. "Blessed be Valerios, my strength, who teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to battle. Grant me the resolve to strike true and fell my adversaries. By your will and mine own hand, the blood of the vanquished spilleth forth."

    As her short prayer came to its end, a knock on the door caught her attention. Just as she expected, it was a soldier sent to summon her to the war room. Calliope quickly waved him off, having already known his message, but was sure to thank him anyway as an act of good manners. Wasting no time, she made her way to the war room, helmet tucked under one arm, to wait for the other commanders.
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    Marcus gathered 250 of his best knights and set out for Latia. He wishes for the rest of the army to join them but the commander's words had him convinced that without an army to stop the bulk of the Camelot forces at the Red Fields, they would venture deeper into Greccan lands with ease and perhaps made their way to Aratos with entire legions worth of men. Nevertheless, he continued to march for Latia alongside his knights - all of whom carried the emblem of his father with a little modifications made to it. 2,000 soldiers under Lady Adriana's command, 3,000 men for the garrison in Latia and an unknown number of troops led by Quintilius. Only more than 5,000 men against the might of several legions of Camelot. He thought as he rode alongside his knights, some were eager to fight and others were doubtful of their situation. Is it enough to stop the siege? He asked himself and he tightens the grip around the reins of his horse.

    "Still feeling doubtful Marcus?" A man rode to Marcus' side, clad in a dark steel armor that resembled a muscular body, with segmented iron plates as his sleeves covering his shoulders and down to his forearm, wearing a pair of steel gauntlets. He has a round shield carried on his back and a short sword strapped to him with a leather belt. Down his back is a cloak of red and he wears a T-visored helm that resembled one from the old Ghathi Empire with a long overflowing red and black crest. "The gods are on our side, Marcus. Valerios watches us. Alvarind watches us," he continued.

    He turned to the man beside him, "I'm not that worried, Androkles. Sometimes I wished the war would finally end." says Marcus as he looked around, his eyes darted from his men and towards the trees that surrounded them on both sides as they rode along the path. Its leaves rustled against one another as if the ghosts whispered of their past deeds. "How's your family back in Skalagos?"

    The man's lips curled into a smile, "They are fine. Theseus is becoming a man and Hera is well enough to take care of the family." Androkles said as he puts his hand on the golden pommel of his sword. He then looked around and noticed the female phalangites of Argentos marching up ahead, they too carry the armor of the old Ghathi Empire much like the soldiers of Skalagos did. "Ah, the Phalanx of Argentos," Androkles remarked. "Tough bitches, I must say. Almost all of them are of Norsenic descent right?"

    The knight of Ironshield nodded, "Norsenic warriors trained in the old ways of Ghath, though with some knowledge of Greccan warfare of course." He recalled. "It's quite amazing that the old ways of Ghath persists in a few towns like Skalagos and Argentos. Even the capital hired a few of you guys to act as trainers for the Greccan Hoplites."

    "I can't deny that," Marcus' friend replied.

    Lightning cracked the sky open with a bright light, followed by the booming sound of thunder that's as loud as the roar of a lion. The skies were dark and the winds blew harder as time passed by. "Rain is coming. We should set up camp with the rest of the forces up ahead. They are not too far from us, send the signal to the rest of the knights to make haste for the camp." He ordered Androkles as his second-in-command took up his horn and blew. In an instant, the thunderous sound of hooves echoed into the forests as the many knights of Ironshield make their way towards the camp. As the sight of tents emerged before them, the rest of Marcus' men began to find a place and set up their own camp.

    Marcus dismounted and headed towards the commander's camp where he'd expect to find Quintilius and Adriana. He passed through the hundreds of soldiers who bears the Godfrey sigil upon their armors and banners, some tending to their weapons and sharpened them in the smithy's tent, others began to drink Greccan ale and enjoyed themselves until the battle for Latia begins. They have only two days left until arriving at the Northern Pearl. 48 hours to plan and reinforce their men - if they ever find mercenaries along the way, Marcus would hire them to bolster their forces and increase their chance of winning.

    Until then, he could only pray to the gods for victory.

    ***

    Cassius could only smirk at Calliope's behaviour. It seemed that the noblewoman had passion for war and bloodshed. Perhaps the 20-year long war between the two kingdoms in the north was the reason why she enlisted for the military. But it wasn't the case for Cassius himself. He was a hired blade at first, tearing through the ranks of Greccan soldiers upon the battlefield with Sorrow held firmly in his hands as he slew as many of them as possible. It wasn't long until one of the Legion-Commanders decided to enlist formally as a soldier - more precisely, as an Ironheart. Of course, he accepted the offer and finds himself standing against the mighty and disciplined warriors of Grecca once more.

    A young soldier summoned him under Lord Eli's command. Cassius bid Old Ben farewell as he left the elderly man for the war room. He passed through the rest of the Iron Legion, some of them locked their gaze upon him, some whispered insults about Cassius and at times, even the Sword of the Night wishes he could kill those who spoke badly of him. Nevertheless, he made his way towards the war room where he'd find Calliope and Lord Eli. "My lord," he greeted the nobleman, raising a clenched fist upon his heart as he saluted.

    The door behind him opened as a tall heavily armored figure walked in. Cassius noticed of the man's armor as it was different, unlike the dark segmented plate armor that the common soldiers of Camelot used to wear. The man armored himself with a dark steel armor, trimmed with white and silver. A cloak of white flows down his back like a pale river and he wears a greathelm with a narrow slit for his eyes to see. "Lord Eli," the tall man nodded as a greeting for the nobleman. The man then turned to the other two, "Calliope, Cassius," he greeted them too.

    "Farram," Cassius responded with a nod. He remembered who the man was, a formidable foe indeed. His terrifying strength upon the field is unmatched by any soldiers of Camelot. Some even claimed that he is just as strong as the Greccan king, able to wield a large greatsword in one hand and a shield in the other. But it was his ruthlessness that made him known across the continent. "Do you need anything milord?" Cassius broke the silence between the three.

    "I needed you three to be in Westerstorm." Lord Eli replied. "Word has come from the Lord Inquisitor and from my own spies that the townsfolk has taken up arms and rebelled against the king. They even captured a few of our own men," he said, crossing his arms as he leaned against the wall, standing before a rectangular table that is between him and the three in front him. "Apparently Westerstorm has fallen completely into rebel hands and this is not good,"

    "Do you think it's the Red Rats?" Farram asked, his deep and muffled voice made him speak like a monster. Even his scarlet eyes would make people think he is a demon. "If it is then, they are posing a dangerous threat to us all," he continued.

    Eli shrugged. "It's possible. But we need to conduct a thorough investigation regarding this matter. After all, the people made the Rats seemed more like a legend rather than an actual organization hell bent on bringing us down." He continued, leaning against the table in front of him and his eyes looked down at the map. "About the rest of the army, we shall march south to Skalagos. You need to leave your men under someone else's command if you wish to join the efforts against the rebellion, Calliope."

    "Sir," Cassius raised his hand, looking at Lord Eli as he speaks. "What are we supposed to do with the prisoners?"

    Eli pulled himself from the table and sighed. His troubled eyes looked outside the window as the day darkens when the moon began to emerge from the horizon. "Execute them. If there are prisoners that you deemed too valuable to be killed, have them brought to Dhûnwall Prison and have the interrogators do their job."

    Dhûnwall Prison. Cassius and Farram exchanges glances as the name of the most formidable fortress for the worst offenders of the law is uttered. The monstrous structure that was built from the base of a mountain made it seemed magnificent enough, it was larger than most Camelot castles - some even said that its enormity rivalled that of the capital itself. Cassius remembered how terrible that place was, its cold and depressing atmosphere coupled with the endless screams of pain that echoed along the stone walls of the prison is a sign that no ordinary men would survive a few months here - or even a week. He remembered when he brought a traitorous noble lord to the prison and how the man cursed himself endlessly by the time he reached the gates of Dhûnwall. Cassius didn't even know if the man survived the interrogators.

    ***

    Aratos, the Keep of Scales,
    United Province of Grecca

    It was a cold night in Aratos, the winds of the north blew across the city as the people began to close their shops and empty the streets. The commoners returned to their houses but not the watchmen on the walls. They kept a vigilant watch as the moon emerges from the mountains, holding their round shields and spears in their hand while guarding the city of Aratos from threats within and without. Several guards roam the streets, clad in the typical Greccan Guard armor to watch out for any criminal activity that would disrupt the serenity during the night. It wasn't long until midnight when the watchers on the gates of Aratos noticed a few riders arriving at the city, wearing an armor that is not of Greccan origin.

    One of them carried a banner that bears the emblem of a golden rose upon a green field. Three riders, they noticed and there are no others that followed. "Open the gates! We wish to speak to King Gaiseric!" One of the man said with a heavy accent that bears resemblance to the ones used by the Kingdom of the Sun. The guards nodded at one another before they grant entrance to the envoys of their neighbouring kingdom.

    The man wore a dark blue armor underneath his green robes trimmed with gold. His raven hair tied to his back like a horsetail and a large sword carried on his back while a shorter one hangs on his hip. His two guards were similarly equipped with one of them wears a horned kabuto and his face is obscured with a mask that resembled an angry demon while the other wore a simple helm with a golden fire shaped front crest.

    "Are you sure that he's able to help us, Keiji?" the horned one speaks to the raven haired man in their native language. "Arthur's power growing stronger at every moment and - "

    "Don't worry, Tadakatsu. I believe King Gaiseric is more than willing to have our nation as allies," Keiji said as he made his way through the maze-like streets of Aratos. He finds himself admired at the marvelous architecture that the Greccans had built for centuries, "Besides, it's best for us to prepare than to have Camelot attack us at the mokent we least expected. Isn't that right, Murasama?"

    "You are correct, Lord Date." the one with the fire crest replied. As they continued their conversation, they have arrived at the castle that was built upon a hill. Its huge structure is fortified with a shorter wall and is guarded by the disciplined men of Grecca. The gates were opened and the warriors from the Kingdom of the Sun entered.

    After having their horses sent to the stables, they made their way into the castle halls where they are expecting to meet Gaiseric himself. They surrendered their weapons to the guards at the front door and entered. Inside the halls, they were greeted with a bright hallway illuminated by stones that would glow in the dark and the iron throne of the king was at the end of the path. On each side, there were banners that carried the sigils of the most prominent noble families of Grecca. "Ah, the Dragonspear," Keiji remarked as he recognizes Lord Rha'az's emblem.

    "Welcome, my friends of the neighbouring kingdom!" A voice boomed from the end of the hall. The warriors of the Sun turned towards the man as he approached, dressed in a red tunic with golden trims as he wears a silver circlet around his head. As he approached, it became apparent that he was taller than them with a muscular frame that made him seem almost like a giant. His arms bore the many scars he acquired from countless battles and he'd show it proudly. He was clean shaven with his sun kissed hair tied to a braid, "What brings you here to my kingdom?" He asked.

    The three bowed as a sign of respect. "The Emperor wishes to offer something for your people. He believed that you would accept it considering...your situation with Camelot," Keiji said, keeping a formal tone as he speaks to Gaiseric - king of Grecca.

    Gaiseric tilted his head as his emerald eyes watched Keiji speaks. It seemed to have piqued his interest, "What is this...irresistible offer?"

    "An alliance between our country,"
    Last edited by Rha'az; 11-27-2018 at 04:07 AM.
    "May the great Twelve have mercy on us all," - Marius, Inquisitor of the Crown

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    {A Greccan wall of a co-operative post by Lleona, Rha'az the Loremaster and Q}


    Lady Godfrey introduced herself in return. "Adriana Irise Godfrey, first daughter of Duke Adrian Will Godfrey. It is good to have you in company."

    "Graces." A small nod from Quintilius came in response. He knew Lord Godfrey, as well as his wife. It seemed their daughter inherited her mother's gentle touch.

    "Does sir Quintilius bear more orders from commander Rha'az?"

    "Nay, mere reinforcement with men, I fear." As he spoke, Quintilius inspected Adriana's full plate armor. It was forged from the finest steel. Again, he sulked over the thought of heading into battle clad in leather. The Argentinians had their shields, though.

    "I will admit I am not well versed in open battle, milady. Perhaps your inherited expertise can guide me and my seventy men to victory." He paused. "We can be upon the Camelots by next nightfall, but I do not wish to alert them too hastily."

    "What would you have us do, Lady Godfrey?"

    "Hmmm... Let us see." Adriana began to ponder what they should do. She stared at her and Quintilius' men. She agreed about the other's idea of not wanting to alert the enemy. With the sound of horses' hooves the Camelotian camp will surely be alerted.

    "How about this, when we arrive at Latia we will stop and when the night falls, we will sneak in. We should cover the horses' hooves with cloth to soften their stomp on the ground."

    She suggested, continuing to tend to her mount and finally stopping. She faced Quintilius and raised her head, since the man stands taller than her.

    "Do you think it's a feasible idea?"

    She asked her head slightly tilted. Since the other person is not a part of her army, she thought of having both of them think about an idea before implementing it even though he is not well versed with open battle, some of his plans can be used albeit with some tweaks over here and there.

    Quintilius smiled. "It seems your lineage does not elude you, dame Godfrey." In his own distinct Argentinian tongue, he complimented the young knightress. After this moment of relief, he continued to be bitter about the coming battle, his mind clouded with doubt. "The soil must be soft. Let us pray to Myssandra for a warm evening breeze."

    The Argentinian commandant turned to the Fraulanx, now joined by Milos and his trustees. They were riding next to Quintilius and Adriana at the front of the two-thousand men march under Godfrey's banner. "Milos, my good friend, do the strategics ring sound to you?" Excited by the thought of battle, the young noble nodded his head. "Aye, lokhagos! I will inform the phalanx!" With a wide turn, he rode off to the back of the marching column.

    Quintilius waved him farewell before turning to Brynn, the toughest of his loyal amazonian bodyguard.
    "What of you, Brynn the Bastion?" In return, she mumbled a non-articulate response in a foreign eastern tongue: "Et klink na hoop riskant."

    "Aye. May Eladris look over us, like he has done often before."




    *** Half-way to Latia, in the Greccan camp ***

    As the sky above them darkens with the gathering clouds, the rest of the army began to set up camp near an open plain surrounded by the forests. Tents were raised and the soldiers were able to resupply and rest for the night before breaking camp on the next day.

    It was crucial for them fight with a full stomach and energy, to fight without the vigor of a youth would be suicidal. The rest of the soldiers tended to their own matters, some began to enjoy themselves and gathered around a campfire, telling stories that happened in their lives, some sang the songs of honor and victory, others stayed in their tents to sleep or to write a letter to their beloved ones back home. After all, they are about to fight one of the largest force ever assembled by the Camelots and it seems that death is one of the more obvious choices.

    Hundreds of Godfrey's banners flutter in the cold winds as it blew harder and harder. The sound of thunder booms across the sky as Axinius began to do his work as a god of the weather. Marcus arrived at the camp not long after the soldiers of Godfrey finished setting up their tents and made his way into the commander's tent. "Good evening,"
    He greeted those who are inside. "Any plans for us to save Latia?
    We are facing against 20,000 men after all and it seemed that facing them all at once upon the battlefield would be suicidal,"

    "Ironshield! Has your ear caught the dialogue between Lady Godfrey and I? The dame spoke sound strategics for the battle ahead. It might mitigate our losses." Quintilius greeted Marcus as he entered with his usual demeanor as he lifted his gaze from the map displayed on the table and looked at him. "We must ride ahead and survey the battlefield. The vista might look less dire."

    Marcus raised an eyebrow and approached them, tilting his head towards Adriana as he crossed his arms, interested to hear her ideas.
    "Anything would be better than having our men slaughtered by thousands of Camelot Legionnaires on the fields. My knights would be rather useless against their pikes and spears," he said to the two.

    Adriana turned to him and briefed Marcus on the infiltration plan that she had come up with when they arrived at Latia. The plan itself seemed possible but there is no guarantee that the ones they sent out to infiltrate to leave the enemy camp alive. "That's the plan, so far. Any thoughts?"

    "Just make sure your men come out alive. Sabotage their equipment if you will, especially the siege weapons that would pose a serious threat whenever the damned assault begins." He advised. He rarely became a part of a siege battle as he participated those that took place outside of a fortified settlement like Latia itself. His knights would be less effective when fighting in the streets due to its narrow paths, if he were to utilize them to their full capabilities, attacking the Camelot armies head on would be the only choice. "If your men can find a way to sneak into the city and reinforce the garrison within Latia's walls, it'd be great to do so," Marcus continued.




    *** Latia overlook, a day later ***



    As Latia arrived in the periphery, so did the smell of blood and fire. It was just before the break of night. The feint sun could be seen escaping under the horizon while a crescent moon already illuminated the shadows with a tint of silverish blue. Though the siege of Latia continued on in the night and the storm raged on, it was quite silent. It was time to rest and retrieve the bodies of the fallen. Thousands of lights could be seen at the palisade encampment of the Camelotian army.

    The command crew of the Argent Phalanx had mobilized at a hill overlooking the Northern Pearl, along with Adriana and her highest knights. The rest of the Greccan army had set up camp a few hundred paces downhill. With whispered tones, the Argentinian commander inquired about the sight. "Milos! What say your eagle eyes?"

    The second-in-command took off his large-plumed helmet and peered into the Camelotian ranks. "I see yet a few spearmen at the rear... And further, rockthrowers! Siegetowers! And... Giants! By Valerios!"

    Quintilius feared as much. The Mad King's war machine was in full throttle. The attacks he dared were overly aggressive. No fine tactician would attempt it without ample men.

    "Dame Godfrey!"
    He hushed, fearing the loudness of his voice.
    "Do you have proper means to destroy those siegeworks?"

    At Quintilius question, Adriana stared at the weapon of mass destruction at the distance. A frown mared her face. Destroying siege weapons had always been tricky especially with the inquisitor leading the army. Adriana sighed. She already expected that the battle will be difficult. "For now we won't be able to destroy it."

    Adriana shook her head and analyzed the enemies formation. At the distance she can saw flickers of fire surrounding the siege weapons.
    "Judging by those lights, I can perfectly assure that the weapons are being guarded. We won't be able to infiltrate their camp because of the lack of personnel specializing in that area."
    She breathed out, feeling the cool breeze pass through the gaps of her armor.
    "Also we won't be able to launch any counterattack against it since our ballistae do not have enough firepower to destroy it." Adriana clicked her tongue in annoyance at their powerlessness against the enemy. She punched the ground in frustration.

    "If we could just pour alchemical fire solution on those tonight our troubles will be solved. Quintilius, do you have any personnel specializing in infiltration?" Adriana asked as she looked sideways staring at the man with hopeful eyes.

    Before he could answer, a silver plume appeared behind his head. It was Brynn of Vascrannog. She looked particularly excited in her own cold way. "Aye, Dame Godfrey.", Quintillius intervened as he put his purple-plumed helmet on his head. "Would you wish to strike soon after, before the Camelons are out of bed?"

    "Yes, so please arrange the people that we are gonna send." Adriana replied while ordering her soldiers to pack up the materials needed for their plan. Time is of the essence so she hurried her people to bring the things that the infiltrators need. She one again stared at a distance and and prayed to the gods hoping that their plan will succeed.

    Androkles moved up to where Quintilius was and arrived with excellent news for all ears to hear. "Captain Quintilius of the Phalanx," he called out, keeping his voice low. "Scouts have reported there is a way for your men to sneak into the city." Says Androkles as he pointed at the forests the surrounded a part of Latia, "We can get into the woods and emerge from the back of the city. Marcus had sent a message to alert the others inside the walls of our presence," he continued.

    "Excellent news, Skalagosi!" Quintilius complimented. "It almost seems our hoplites can break open the wine and crush the Camelons on toxified stomach, ala Androkles?" It was one of his rude jokes, but the underlying message was clear.

    "Our chances of winning might increase, Captain Quintilius. But we're facing against an army led by two Inquisitors. That is something that gives the damned northern bastards an advantage. Besides, there are rumors that they can use magic," Androkles said as he narrowed his eyes to see at the Camelot camp where the rest of the enemy began to prepare themselves for the next day. "May Alvarind grant your men bravery."

    "Aye, Androkles!" Quintilius was already making his way downhill. "Take command of the Argent! Milos, who's fool of a brother you know well, will lead them with true vigor." Soon after, Quintilius and Brynn snuck off into the woods along with but a dozen men. The fierce storm and night sky covered their approach. A final message of preparation rallied the troops for dangers ahead. "Be silent and swift, and we shall quell this impotence without incident!"

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