Carnival Fantasia

Marana Scarlet is coming....what will you do? .....What will you do?

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16. The Silent Song of the dead

Ash and Dust. 

Dust and Ash.

The bones of long since dead worriers sung in silent choruses.

The bodies piled on top of each other for as far as the eye could see. 

Crows squabbled over the few petty remains.

"Get a load of that air," Marana said intaking a huge amount of air with a grin of satisfaction, "It's the dust fragments of twelve year dead corpses that give it that true feeling of morbidness and despair". 

Cage stepped carefully between the spaces of dead worriers, occasionally snapping brittle bones and crunching rusty armour, with each noise the folk's of crows would flutter away in a frenzy. "You know your not very lady like are you".

"Gender means nothing to me only achieving my goal is important although I have to admit being a fully mature woman certainly had its perks". 

"Yer, yer you keep making a point of how big your breasts were but that's not what I mean-"

"Oh! You mean swooning into the arms of a valiant knight at the first sign of danger, dropping tissues for them to pick up and dreaming of happy ever after with the love of your life have three children while living in a castle with no worries what so ever". 

Cage stepped on a skull and shattered it under his waight, he apologised solemnly. "I was thinking more on the lines of just common decency, mean anything to you?" 

"When one is trying to conquer the world things like that will only hold you back besides I had to discard all my emotions to make more room for the one's that mattered". 

Cage gazed around. 

Out here they were in the open. 

About a bow shot away there still stood a trebuchet. 

Even further away were cliffs and rocky hills. 

"Cage look at that!"

He followed to where she was pointing, upwards and onwards. 

A Galleon Warship peaked it's bowsprit from around a cliff corner, the rest of the ship revealed it's self as it sailed around the mountain corner.

Cage suddenly drained of colour. That was an Anak War Galleon, the symbol of the mask with contrasting colours painted on the side only proved it all the more. "Why is something like that in the Plain of Ash and Dust, could they know we're here?" 

"From here I recon thirty cannons aside, reenforced hull, such a sight, why didn't I think of a flying ship, it would have made it so easy to get over the walls of Anak-"

"-Shell we take a few more moments to take in this splendid view or run for cover before they blow us to bits with those thirty cannons or after the blow us to bits". 

"Cage your sense of humour is not your strong point". 

"Shut up", he lashed dashing over to the trebuchet and underneath it, Cage placed her on the ground and pushed her to the floor and lay on top of her. 

"This is most uncomfortable and detestable Cage". 

"Just shut up, I don't like this anymore than you do better to act dead than to actually be dead, hopefully they will just pass by thinking we're corpses or we'll be dodging cannon fire". The idea didn't sound all to appealing. Cage didn't take any pleasure in killing and he knew he'd be a hypercritical in saying that he hated siege machines it was just that he didn't like the idea of being killed by one and let all his years of training in the ways of the sword be cut short so suddenly, he'd much rather die by someone out classing him, that would be much more honourable and acceptable. 

Shadows descended over them as the Galleon War Ship floated over their heads. 


The silent whispers of the dead spread throughout the plain of Ash and Dust. 

-Marana Scarlet is here-

-Marana Scarlet is here-

The silent dead sung the song. 

Deep within the hollow eyes of the deceased worriers a spark lit up, like a azure blue firefly glowing inside a pitch black tunnel.

The Knights clenched their weapons and silently chanted a single word which if could be heard could bring walls crumbling down. 

-Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill!-                   
                 

Cruxus the Necromancer lifted his head, an unseen smile hidden by his mask, crinkled up his face, "The dead are restless tonight" 


Kaine Hunter moved swiftly to the balcony of the ship and leaned over.

Julie and Caim also leaned over the edge wondering what Kaine was so fixated on. 

"Feeling sick?" Julie mocked as he had moved fast enough to make it look as if he were. Kaine didn't even hear. 

"Spotted Marana?" Caim asked, trying to find a spot of crimson amongst all the grey. 

"No," Kaine replied, his voice a far away whisper. "Can't you feel it in the air, that ominous feeling, that be the undead....they have found Marana".


The dust fragments rolled across the ground in their uncountable numbers, the dust collected together and condensed to remake long since disintegrated bones all the while the silent chant rang.

-Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill!-

Discarded rusty armour rolled along the ground as if being pulled by invisible strings. 

-Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill!-


Marana shifted uneasily, "Cage!"

"Ssh!" 

"No Cage this is important!" 


"Listen to their song!" Cruxus yelled at the ceiling as he spun around and around enjoying ever moment, "Listen to their chanting! Listen to their pleads! What a glorious night this is to witness the dead sing their song of silence!"

                        
"If we follow the dead they will lead us to Marana?" Caim asked. 

"Yes and no. Marana's presence has rattled the undead into a wild frenzy, that they would kill anyone unfortunately and stupid enough down in the plain, it is not safe for anyone down theire, we cannot land", Kaine hammered his fist into the railing. 


Cage heard the rustling of armour, yanked out his steal sword and decapitated the undead worrier in one easy swing. The knight didn't need telling that the deceased worriers of Ash and Dust had been revitalised. He grabbed Marana and slung her over his shoulders, fell another soldier, booted another out the way and bolted as fast as he could across the plain. Flying Galleon or no Flying Galleon they were not safe there.

The dead rose all around. 
 

"Arch-Mage!" the watchman yelled on the port side "Marana and her guardian just ran right underneath us and is heading to the cliff just yonder!" 

Kaine spun around and ran across the ship, pushing past Elite Guards and sailors as he gave them no time to move, he leaned over the railing, his eyes widened as he saw her and the guardian battling across the plain. 

Caim was beside him, "He battles well for someone so outnumbered and carrying Marana at the same time, a true knight". 

Kaine glared, "Want to go down and shack the knights hand who broke your brothers neck?"

"I'm just saying, even though he's our marked target he's an accomplished knight, think about it he's defending the most hated person in the world and doing a bloody good job, not many people would even consider-" 

"He's a fool!" Kaine interrupted, "I reckon he doesn't even know who he's defending, he believes she's just some random little girl who's being chased by Anak's soldiers for the fun of it and he's taken it on himself to be her guardian". 

"I can hardly see that-" Caim began but.

"What does it matter!" Kaine yelled, "Those fools are getting away whilst you marvel at his stupidity. Helmsman overtake and cut them off, land if you have too". 

"Hold on!" Julie blurted, "You said it was too dangerous to land". 

"I did didn't I," Kaine said half heartedly, "but the thing is, I'm in charge here and I say we land in front of them and capture them now, if you don't want to get killed by the undead don't mess up". 


Cruxus watched everything from the Miasma, "Look at them, none of them realise that Cruxus is watching secretly, secretly manipulating....everything....ever so....subtlety". He waved his hand over the Miasma and he viewed the people arguing and rushing about on the galleon ship. 


Kain turned his head as far round and up as his neck would allow and squinted, all he could see was balloon. He had this pit feeling something was watching him. 


Cage strode up the steep hill grunting with each step, his feet sank into the ash making it all the harder. 

The Dead Knights scrambled up after him. 

Cage glanced up as the Dead Knights came hurtling down. They were above as well. Swishing his sword around he parried the first so hard it's blade shattered and it's entire body thrown to one side. "Come on I'll take all of you one at a time or all together it means little to me!" he roared and fort his way up the hill. 

"Let me help you or we'll both die", Marana pleaded. 

"No!" he bellowed smashing a knight in the face with the pommel of his sword with bone breaking helmet crunching power he the planted his boot into it's chest and sent it hurtling back into others. Cage then dropped Marana on the floor, she landed heavily on all fours. He then drew his silver sword, "I don't need your help and I'll never ask for it! Now get on my back and hold on tight". She jumped on to his back a coiled her arms around his neck.       


Cruxus watched the Guardian Knight battle his way through the Undead Knights like a whirlwind with blades, destroying anything in his path. "Cruxus finds this knight interesting. Cruxus has never witnessed a man fight so well to protect Marana for even her Generals would not fight with such determination to protect her, no, they would sooner kill her if she even faulted, even the slightest hesitation and her head would roll but him, he fights to protect Marana but why? Why would a valiant knight lower himself to protect the most hated person in all the world?" 

The all-knowing Miasma made Cruxus think it said not all is as it seams, you must look beyond flesh and peer into their souls for the answers, two you see with your eyes but three they are in soul. 


"Cage let me help you!" 

"No!" he yelled stubbornly.

He yelled no even-though his back was against a cliff wall.

He yelled no even-though he face a marauder of slowly advancing Undead Knights.

He yelled no even-though he was overshadowed by the floating war ship.

He would yell no even if the very ground were to crumble under his feet. 

All the while the silent song continued.

-Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill!- 
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