tanker22 Posted April 26, 2009 Share Posted April 26, 2009 This is a small exert from a story I wrote a few years back. I cleaned it up some for the board and took a few paragraphs out that weren’t needed unless you were going to read the entire story. Unfortunately it’s adult erotica so you won’t be seeing the story as a whole at least on reaper. This is one of the projects sitting on my shelf along with the numerous others, getting it edited and cleaned up for submission to a publisher some time in the future. I got the idea for it from some of the Wolfen miniatures I’ve seen on different sites and then just modified it to a storyline. It is set in a medieval world reminiscent of the late Roman Empire being a combination of both history and fantasy though. If you like the idea of this short story I can just keep going with it on reaper for a while, adding bits that are outside of the actual story line centering on the main character Grim. Hope you enjoy it and feedback is welcome. You’ll probably find some editing and grammar errors, I haven’t really gone though it all that closely after my cut and paste session. Thanks for looking and enjoy! The stench of death hung heavily in the air around Grim like a thick blanket trying to steal his breath away as the musky smell of sweat from his body assaulted his nostrils. He could hear the cries of the carrion birds all ready at their grizzly work while the inevitable swarms of flies buzzed about the remains of what had once been proud men and beasts tying to kill one another not long ago. Grim stood upon the battlefield still panting heavily from the day’s work, tired and sore from the numerous wounds about his body. “Pain’s a good thing boy,” an old teacher and mentor of his once said, “It reminds you that you’re still alive!” Removing his helm, Grim held it loosely in his hand before scratching at the sweat matted fur of his head, finally allowing his tall ears to stretch after hours of being lain back flat against his head before they drooped slightly from exhaustion. His heavy plate and chain armor was dented and rent with the countless blows of others seeking his flesh as he stood motionless calming himself. Grim raised his face to the sky, closed his eyes and slowed his breathing. His lean muzzle was coated with a sticky dry layer of blood from an enemy soldier. In a savage dance of death, Grim had torn his throat out with teeth when the man attempted to grapple him after losing his weapon. “Not this time… not today.” He half chuckled; half growled to himself looking about the carnage surrounding him. Grim was a Wolfen, not man or wolf, something in between, yet different than both. The light brownish gray fur of his pelt was now matted to his 7’5 tall muscular body beneath his armor. He wasn’t completely covered in fur like one of his savage looking brothers, the wolf though. Instead it grew in patches generally around high points such as the shoulders and upper back. A strip ran from the neck down, spreading as it did so to cover the upper part of his hips and a portion of the buttocks. His arms and legs had a patchy covering of fur as well, mainly over top the bulging muscles of his limbs while his face was covered in soft short hair all accept the muzzle. A thick shaggy mane of hair grew down from the back of his head and joined that of his neck and shoulders. Those areas that were not covered by fur instead had a layer of resilient tough skin that acted almost as a form of secondary armor. Grim’s face still had a somewhat wolf like appearance though, tall pointed ears atop a broad head, powerful jaws and sharp canine teeth. His muzzle was slightly less elongated than a wolf but wider and still pronounced. Generally tall and heavily muscled, Wolfen seemed custom made for the deadly business of war and battle. Strong, fast, quick reflexes and keen senses made them a deadly adversary to face. They were highly prized additions to any army, and clients paid dearly to retain their services. From a very young age their bodies and minds were conditioned and hardened to become an unfeeling thing and a machine of war. Creature comforts meant nothing, they were but one more thing that could be taken or left as needed. Emotions and suffering could be turned off and ignored when need be as well, they were but one more weapon for a foe to use against you. The Wolfen also had a unique ability that no other race could boast of. When in situations of extreme stress, combat or the lust to mate, a gland located near the back of the heart would inject a chemical into their blood stream. This was in a way similar to the adrenaline rush that Humans and other races experienced but much more powerful resulting in a superhuman boost strength, speed and agility. The down side to this was a loss of emotional control in the form of a rage, with rational thought almost being eliminated. This turned the Wolfen into a bloodthirsty beast, a creature of pure rage and hate, a machine bent on nothing but destruction and death. This ability could be controlled to a point if the Woflen was strong enough by waging a battle of self-control and will to keep the beast in check. Most preferred not to though, taking advantage of the power and embracing it, gaining the ability to rip their enemies apart limb by limb. A chemical reaction in the blood also caused the eyes of the Wolfen to glow red as if lit by an inner fire; becoming brighter as the beast became stronger and the rage built inside them before bursting forth like a tidal wave. It is said that when the eyes of a Wolfen turn to red, rivers of blood will flow and none shall be spared its horrors. Grim's body was hard and lean from the ten months of campaigning in the field in service of the Baron of Ritterlich, Lord High protector of Arrendell, and several other titles he could give less than a damn about. All he cared about was the gold. You see Grim was a soldier fortune or mercenary, a sword for hire as others called him and his allegiance belonged only to the highest bidder. Grim was also very good at what he did. He was a true artist that painted his work in blood upon the canvas of other men’s bodies. He, along with several hundred others had been hired to help fill out the ranks of the Baron's army for the war against Lord Malcolm of Trent, the Usurper. The war had finally come to its last stage in the early spring of the year 1524 by the Dwarven calendar; the standard accepted measure of time in the Empire. When cornered with their backs to the impassible Dekka Mountains, Lord Malcolm’s army had then entrenched itself upon the plains of Haarath before the great slaughter of battle began. Malcolm and his forces fought like wild animals knowing that surrender was out of the question, no quarter was given or asked for on either side. It had been a war of extermination and the final battle proved to be nothing less. Despite this, Malcolm and several of his high-ranking officers had been captured at the end. Even now they marched in chains back to the Baron's castle to await their summons before the King and his judgment upon them. The sentence would be death, there was no doubt of it but protocol must be maintained for an appearance seeing that Malcolm was the King’s nephew after all. Thirty thousand had died this day. Even in victory the remaining forces of the Baron numbered less than three thousand effectives, a small fraction of the once proud army he commanded. It had been a near thing and it very easily could have gone the other way. The small unit of mercenaries numbering several hundred strong that Grim had been a part of stood in reserve. Lord Malcolm relied heavily on non-human troops and had his best formed into a single shock unit consisting of Trolls, Giants, Ogres and other great beasts. He had unleashed them at the height of the battle to smash their way through the Baron's forces quickly opening a breach for the remainder of his army to follow to safety. The mercenaries held in reserve at this point had been moved forward quickly into their path to try and fill the gap and slow their progress until others units could be shifted to reseal the now large whole in the their lines. Grim and his band under the leadership of one of the Baron's officers quickly became surrounded forming an island of defiant steel in a sea of hate and madness. Their formation had held for a little while but in time, as men and creatures fell, it slowly began to break apart. Soon it became individual battles of survival as the mercenaries were swarmed and overrun. Of the four hundred strong battalion that remained at this point in the campaign, only a handful were still left at the end, not more than twenty at most. They had done their job though, disrupting the breakout and slowing its advance long enough so that the Baron had time to shift a unit of heavy cavalry to assault the spearhead with an infantry regiment moving in behind them to reseal the breach. Grim’s thoughts were interrupted by the approach of Morgan, a fellow mercenary whom Grim had known for quiet some time. He opened his eyes looking at one of the few people left alive that he called a friend, a Human of great skill and courage. He and Morgan had fought side by side on many occasion meeting as new recruits in the Iron Guard mercenary Regiment years ago. As Morgan approached it was evident he had suffered a deep wound to one of his legs as he limped to a stop. Grim looked at the now bandaged leg that still seeped blood heavily, then back up into Morgan’s eyes. “It’s not as bad as it looks, a Troll clipped me on his way down, it’ll be fine.” He replied shrugging his shoulders. By the looks of it Grim knew it was bothering him much worse than he let on but said nothing only nodding his large shaggy head. “Not many of us left is their Sergeant? But maybe that was their intention all along, keeps the expenses lower for the Baron that way.” Morgan chuckled as he looking at the piles of dead surrounding them. They both knew that wasn’t true though, an employer didn’t keep contracts for very long if they needlessly threw away or misused the professional soldiers they hired. Mercs were a very tight knit group of people, the true professionals who sold their swords for pay, and employer reputation usually decided whether or not a contract was signed with them or not. “No there isn’t my friend,” Grim snorted. “There seems to be less and less of us every day. Who bought it this time? I know I saw Tell and Constantine go down in the break out attempt, who else?” “Felix and Gorn for sure, wasn’t much left after the Chimera got through with them. The healers took Otto already but he won’t make it though the night I think. He lost an arm and a lot of blood with it. I haven’t seen Forblod either since the damn goblins swarmed him. He was holding is own for awhile but…” Morgan only shook his head looking about as if searching the piles of dead for the friend he knew was among them. That was most of the remaining old crew they had started the campaign with gone now, Grim’s only family in a matter of speaking. “I now Yvenn made, I saw him looting already if you can believe it.” Grim said with a smile looking at Morgan to see his expression mirrored. “Of course he made it, that weasel of a codpiece has more lives than a cat, and nothing wrong with collecting a bit of a bonus for a hard days work either. If not him than one of the damn grave diggers will get the stuff.” It had become a running joke among them that if Yvenn ever died, whom ever got to his body first would find enough gold and trinkets stashed amongst the many pockets and packs he had to retire on as a rich man. He had been known to even stop in the height of a battle to pick up an item from a fallen enemy if it struck his fancy or ruffle though pouches if the chance of gold was to be had. “He must be carrying around an extra fifty or seventy five pounds of stuff by now.” “I don’t care how much he has on him as long as he keeps killing and marching like the rest of us he can lug around as much as he wants. You need to get to the healers Morgan, you’re still bleeding.” Grim said breaking the lighthearted banter and looking at the wound on Morgan's leg. Sometimes humor was the only way that people in their line of work learned to deal with the madness that made up their lives. “Humph! And let those butchers get a hold of me, I think not. Their answer to everything is “take it off!” Morgan exhaled heavily looking up at him. Grim only nodded knowing his mind was made up. “I’ll look at it for you later then, why don’t you gather what’s left, make sure they get a resupply of water and what ever else they need as well, I’ll meet you in a little while at the rally point.” This satisfied Morgan as he nodded in reply. Both knew that Grim’s skill was just as good if not better than that of the healers when it came to treating battlefield wounds. Morgan also knew his old friend well enough that he could tell Grim just wanted to be alone for awhile, his mind already beginning to wonder on some deeper hidden thought. “Alright, I’ll see you there Sergeant.” Morgan finally said as he limped off searching for any of mercenaries still alive. Grim could hear men moving about the battlefield now cleaning up. What this meant was surviving enemies were given the sword and any friendly troops that were wounded but alive were hurried off to the healers under their own power or by boys carrying the stretchers. The ever present moaning of the wounded in pain and the cries for mercy of the enemy rent the air about Grim like some perverse form of music, a sound that he could hear even in his dreams at night. Grim didn’t like sleeping much. It became nothing more than a never-ending nightmare of year after year of horror and death washing over him. Opening his eyes, he looked around the field of carnage once more. Grim placed his canteen to his lips taking great swigs of water, emptying it in several gulps trying to quench the thirst that follows battle. It was a thirst that never seemed to go away no matter how much is drunk. Lazily he threw his large two handed sword over his shoulder beginning to slowly walk towards the rally point to join the remaining few still alive from his unit. Survivors of the Baron's army where already gathered there he could tell, perhaps a quarter of a mile away. A great sadness began to over take him as he walked amongst the bodies of both friend and foe, so thick upon the ground it was hard to find a clear path though them. He felt a slight resistance in his steps while he walked; the pools of blood had begun turning the churned up ground into thick red mud trying to pull the boots from his feet. On occasion he would see the mangled and bloody body of a man writhe in agony near him or feel the weak grip of a hand at his boot. The moaning and cries of help now fell on deaf ears though as he walked apparently unfeeling through the sea of death fixated only on his goal of making it to the rally point. He had seen so much pain and death in his life it was necessary to steel his soul against it lest he go mad. But he couldn’t help feel the sense of loss at every life he took, robbing just a bit more of his sanity with each kill. Will there be anything left of me one day? He thought, or am I condemned to be a reaper of flesh and blood for the remainder of my life? Grim knew nothing else but war and battle, it was what he had become, consuming him with every breath he took. As much as he loathed it, he craved and desired it. The climatic thrill of combat and the glory and rewards that came with it were like an aphrodisiac. Grim’s blood boiled when in battle; he became a thing of steel and dispenser of death, truly alive at last. “At least its over for now.” He said softly nearing his comrades in arms. The cheering could be heard as he approached, man and beast happy to be alive, celebrating the great victory which they had just won. “Perhaps it will end one day. Perhaps…” Grim knew he would not be so lucky though. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
Join the conversation
You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.