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Emboldened Strides

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Emboldened Strides

Postby OverLoad » Sat Mar 29, 2014 11:03 pm

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Days passed by without much notice by Robb, who was assigned to guard one of the more secluded gates of Gotharc. Thomas’ mindset was that Cordelia would attempt to smuggler her army through one of these lesser gates, since she certainly had knowledge of them.

The gate was called Wings Pass, and was built in the era whence the Wyvern Kings explored the Middle Continent. It had the characteristic motifs of the cathedrals and gates of the time, with both the lavish stone portals and decorative crenellations. It was a path through which many of royalty had once passed, and the road leading into it was lined with flowers of all blooms. The grass surrounding it was well kept, although the gate saw little use. Its tiny door prohibited anything taller than a single person to walk in at once, making it a poor choice to attack.

Robb sighed as he pressed his palms against the cold stone rim. Looking out onto the grass and trees beyond the city of Gotharc, he saw nothing of importance. The road that pierced through the wall wound over hills and under trees beyond the horizon, but there was no movement in Robb’s field of view.

All along the wall, other soldiers paced nervously. The rumors of Cordelia’s victories had made their way to Gotharc like wildfire, and all of Gotharc collectively shook with anticipation and anxiety. The Emperor shook the most of all.

For a split second, Robb saw something quiver on the horizon. In the flash, it was gone. Robb squinted and saw it flash by again. It was a tiny speck of gold on the horizon, and it didn’t take Robb long to realize it was a banned waving gallantly on a lance.

“Hey… hey! There’s banners on the horizon!” a soldier to Robb’s left shouted. He had seen it too, and was unsheathing his sword. Others snapped out of their daze with frightened looks and grasped for their shields and swords stacked on the wall walk.

Within minutes, the banners flashing gold were visible still in the distance, but closer than the horizon. Thousands of marching armed men, their silver helms gleaming in the sun. They carried banners periodically, the gold standard atop hundreds of lances. Defectors, Robb thought. They must have joined the cause in Gothilir or along her warpath.

Interspersed were the black helmeted soldiers of the Wyvern Kingdom, the host that escorted Cordelia to her home continent from the northern lands she was shipped off to. Mesmerized by the display before him, Robb did not realize that a singular figure was riding forth while all others had stopped in their places. The figure held a banner on a shorter lance, and rose atop a red-garbed horse.

It was only until the figure was nearly at the gate did the soldiers realize it was Cordelia herself, stride atop a brown warhorse decked in the black and red garb of the Wyvern Kingdom. She held a long sword in her right hand and the banner in her left. The wind caused it to flap violently, and she had to squint to stare at the defenders.

“Which of you is the commander?” she stated firmly. The cold beauty of her voice took Robb aback. She was younger than him, but her pose and manner commanded respect. He had never seen her touch a sword in her life when she lived in Gotharc, but she held the long sword with a grace unseen in most. Her hair was braided and tied up around her head, a fashion amongst the royalty of the Northern Continent. Her dress, however, was very characteristic of Middle Continent fashion.

Nobody answered her call. Her horse paced back and forth nervously. Frowning, she called out again, “If none of you can provide me with any sort of information, then I will be willing to bring this wall down. You will come down with it, and face my wrath then. Who commands here?”

Robb came to the front and made a motion to grab her attention. “I am willing to speak on our behalf, since no other will come forth.” He was surprised by his own manner of speech, which was decidedly noble. “I am Robb, Your Radiance.”

Cordelia noted the formality. “You are no street soldier, Robb. I assume you are in direct service of my vile brother, perhaps a guard who has seen much of Gotharc?”

“Yes, Your Radiance. I go wherever the Emperor needs me to be.” Robb replied, straightening his back as he spoke.

“I see. I propose something to you, Robb. You and your fellow soldiers could drop your arms, surrender the gate to me and let us into the city peacefully. Or, you could resist, and I would be forced to bring forth my army to tear down this gate and crush you where you stand.” Cordelia paused, before continuing, “You would let us have the gate, that is, if you are loyal to the true heir to the Gold Throne.”

She’s certainly more convincing than Thomas, and more daring. Robb thought. He drummed his fingers. He turned to the soldiers to his left, then to his right. All of them looked at him incredulously, as if he were a corpse walking. They buy into Thomas’ fury and fantasy. They see her as a usurping witch. Well…what do I see her as?

Time passed, and it had felt like an eternity for Robb. Visions of slaughter clouded his judgment, of being torn to pieces by both sides of the conflict. But among all, he saw the golden banners flapping in the wind, thousands above the city of Gotharc.

“Your Radiance,” Robb began with a smile, “The gate is yours.”


The sixteenth chapter of my latest story, A Lion In The Wyvern's Nest, the rest of which can be read here. More photos can be found on my Brickshelf. Sorry for being late with this one, life's gotten in the way a bit. C&C always welcome. :)
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Re: Emboldened Strides

Postby Brickninja » Sun Mar 30, 2014 7:46 am

Wow, nice continuation!
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Re: Emboldened Strides

Postby mpoh98 » Mon Mar 31, 2014 2:26 am

Wonderful, just wonderful! The storyline is great! How she took the gate is sheer brilliance, reminds me of Caesar Augustus, and, when fighting Mark Anthony, beats the soldiers, he says that if they join him, he will pardon them! :D
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