Forgotten Past

I woke up, and remembered nothing. Remembered nothing, and yet was charged with the task of saving an entire race...

Yes, it's kinda like the forgotten and Only Hope mixed in together :) I liked both the stories, so for one of my possible stories for next year's Young Movellist, I decided to write this. Enjoy.


5. Chapter 5

By the time the soldiers came, the innkeepers sons had gone round the entire village, warning people of the threat that they were about to face, and assuring them that me an Alvyss, two mysterious travellers, would save them.
As I stood beside my human friend on the roof of someone's house, I wondered what would happen to them all if I let them down. Would they starve? Would the soldiers kill them all for resisting, and sending people out to try and stop them?
"Don't worry, Elfy," Alvyss grinned beside me. "If you can't fight, then I guess I'll just have to save you as well."
His words were reassuring- almost. If our enemies were half the numbers they were, he could probably take them on. But there were twenty of them, not ten, and they all had blood-rhinos.
"And how are you going to do that?" I asked. It was strange, how much I already trusted him, when I'd only met him yesterday. I'd told him everything; the forgetting; the flashbacks; the boy who sat dying in a cage. All the while, he'd listened patiently, and then told me who he was- a ranger sent here to protect the village from the rumored soldiers that would come to raid them. He'd been here eight days, on the knowledge that, if the rumors were true, he could protect the villagers from starvation. 
The rangers, he'd told me, were people who were on the elves side of the war, staying within the human territory to help from the inside. 
"Well, you'll just have to wait and see," he said, pulling me from my thoughts. I grinned back, but I could see the doubt beneath his mask of fearlessness. He was just as nervous as I was. 
My ears suddenly pricked up to the sound of something heavy crashing through the undergrowth. I stood, picked up my bow, and said,
"Get ready."
Instantly, Alvyss was notching an arrow to his own bow, while I readied myself to shoot. 
"Guess those ears of yours are massive for a reason, Elfy," Alvyss muttered, eyes fixed on the forest where they'd emerge from.
"The bigger, the better," I replied bluntly, and the sound grew closer. I tensed. What if I wasn't any good at this? What if I mucked up completely? Alvyss would die; the villagers would die!
"Calm down, Elfy. You get freaked out, we die," the ranger warned me. I glanced at him. He was right, I realised. I could only do the best that I could- and that was not getting all freaked out, because, even though I was afraid, I could conquer that fear, calm myself, and just try to shoot straight. And I'd have to. Because the blood-rhinos had just emerged from the trees.
Drawing the bowstrings back, I took a deep breath, sighted, and loosed.
Two rhinos fell dead, the ones behind them either slamming into their bodies, or swerving sharply out of control. A tiny smile hinted at my face as I nothced the next arrow. It had worked!
Drawing again in one fluid movement, I aimed for the next rhino, and loosed. My target fell, but Alvyss's arrow had missed the fatal chink in the creature's armor, and the arrow had embedded itself, useless, into the rhino's armor. 
We had no time to ponder on his miss; our next arrows were already flying through the air, ready to strike their targets. 
As we continuously fired at the blood-rhinos, the tactic seemed to work well; the creature's at the back were slowed by their comrade's deaths, and most of the riders came away injured, or dead. 
But though the strategy had been good, it was not enough to spare us from the fighting at close-quarters. By the time they were upon us, there were still six blood-rhinos, and all but four riders still alive, though half of those were injured. Dropping my bow, I swung myself down from the rooftop, un-sheathed two gleaming swords, and charged at the blood-rhinos. 

A spear whistled towards me, and I leaped nimbly to the side, amazed at my own quick reactions. Whoever had trained me had trained me well, I could see, rolling aside as a throwing axe sliced through the air beside me. 
A blood-rhino came right at me, head on. I had no time to dive out of the way, and so I did the only thing I could- dived right underneath it, praying that the creature wouldn't kick me as it charged. Thinking fast, I decided not to give it that option to slam it's rear leg into me, and thrust both my swords upwards, plunging into it's unprotected skin. Wrenching my blades from the creature's belly, I darted out of the way before it could fall on me. 
My eyes were wide with both terror and adrenaline. I couldn't be that bad at fighting, if I wasn't dead yet, and I'd killed a blood-rhino. 
Before the rhino's rider could kill me, I leaped nimbly up onto the dead animal's leg, leaping upwards towards the soldier. As my sword plunged through his heart, I felt almost guilty. His eyes were pleading for mercy; mouth open in a twisted scream. And yet, just a few minutes ago, he had been willing to let others starve just so that he wouldn't have to ration his food. 
Though I was sorry I'd had to kill him, it had pained me more when I'd shot the rabbit.
Yeah. I'm inhuman. I'd already figured that out for myself, when I'd seen the pointy ears and the elven armor.
As another blood-rhino charged me, I nimbly darted away from it. The creatures were fast when charging, I'll give them that. But manouverability? They can't swerve as quickly as most animals can. They just lumber straight past, wait until they've slowed enough, and turn slowly. This fact gave me an advantage fighting them- while the creature rushed past, I had time to slice open the saddle straps, and the rider fell, screaming, to the floor, crushed beneath the rhino's foot. It made the lumbering giant stumble a little, too, having it's rider suddenly beneath it's foot, with all the saddle straps tangled around the both of them. 
In it's weak second when it stumbled, I managed to stab my swords into it's hide. The rhino staggered a few steps more, before collapsing, and I ran to collect my blades. It surprised me how naturally all of this came to me, and made me wonder even more about who I'd been before my memory was taken from me. What sort of person picks up two swords, and can kill with them as easily as she can walk on her two feet?
Just as I turned to fight my next foe, I caught a glimpse of Alvyss's battle, only a few metres away. 
And realised, with dread, that he was pinned to the floor, beneath a blood-rhino's foot, screaming in defiance but unable to fight.
I may have just met him, but he'd already proven himself to be a good friend, and I didn't want him to die. I couldn't just let him be killed!
Charging forwards, one of the soldiers raised his mace above Alvyss's head, laughing. Alvyss tried to fight back, but the blood-rhino was holding him there, refusing to move.
With all my strength, I threw myself forwards, colliding with the soldier who had the mace, sending us both to the floor. It came down to whoever was the quickest to recover from the fall, and I was the first. Slashing at the soldier's stomach, I ignored his screams, rolled to my feet, and ran to Alvyss. 
The blood-rhino started to shift it's weight forwards, onto the foot that Alvyss was pinned beneath. 
I did the only thing I could to divert it's attention.
I threw one of my swords at it's side, trying to hit one of the weak spot's in it's armor. 
The sword missed, but the rhino still looked at me, and, slowly, turned itself around. I gulped, which is only natural when you're being glared at by a massive rhino that's just decided it wants to kill you.
"Sitaryn..." Alvyss's voice was weak, pleading me not to use myself as bait. Why am I risking my life for a human? A voice in the back of my head asked, but I chose to ignore it, brandishing my sword to give my friend time to recover. I saw another soldier running at Alvyss, grabbed a dagger from my belt, and threw it.
The soldier went down, and the rhino charged. 
In the next few seconds, everything happened so quickly that it's hard to remember. I rolled away from the enraged blood-rhino that had just charged me, only to find the last two thundering towards me on both sides. I tried to run forwards, but one of the soldiers blocked my way, depriving me of the second I needed to escape the charging beasts. 
In a final act of desperation, I threw myself to the floor, and the blood-rhino that had been attacking my left only just missed my head as it passed right over the top of me. And then, the two of them collided, slamming into each other and snapping the other's necks with their sheer force and power. I tried to roll away, fear gripping at me, but I wasn't quick enough; the blood-rhino was collapsing downwards, and I was beneath it. 
I was going to die.
And then, somehow, someone was wrenching me away from the dead creature, and I could see sunlight again instead of the blood-rhino's hide.
"Saved you there, Elfy," Alvyss grinned.
Never before had I been so glad to hear my irritating nickname. 
"And I saved you twice before that," I replied, laughing. (And no; I don't know why I was laughing when the humans weren't all dead yet.)
"Fair enough," he said, and, together, we charged the soldiers.

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