Chronicles of Dreven Trenz

First run of a series I may continue. Be gentle. Its my first time.

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9. Another Sun Sets

Chapter 5 - Another Sun Sets

     Our plans set and now in motion, the four of us set off back to Sir Roy's village. We encountered little resistance, save our own hunger, and made it back in two days.We approach the gate, Sir Roy and Dreven in the lead, Maeve the Red with her hands bound in rope, and finally myself bringing up the back. As the gates loom closer, a guard peeks over the garrison. His eyes go wide as he realizes just what he was witnessing. His helmeted head disappears and I hear a loud voice boom "OPEN THE GATES!" With a great creaking groan, the gates slowly swing inward. We step through amid whispers and wide eyed stares. I can hear them speaking in hushed tones.

     "Its her!"

     "Maeve the Red!"

     "She's been captured!"

     We're followed by a large group of people through the center of town, the hushed tones turning into excited murmurs, and finally into raucous cheering. We eventually find our way to the governor's mansion, and an upper floor window bangs open.

     "What's all the racket out here?!" A gruff voice calls. The governor, a large mustachioed man, leans from the window and squints towards the street. His eyes go wide and he sputters in surprise. "You've done it?! Roy? You brought in Maeve?!" I almost giggle at this, but manage to keep my cool. The window quickly closes and thumping can be heard as the governor makes his way downstairs. The door to the mansion bursts open, and the rather portly governor stands before his people.

     "Yes, oh governor. I, Sir Roy, have bested Maeve the Red and brought her to justice." He mockingly bows low, a sly smile crossing his face. Standing once more, he tilts his head. "I believe there is the matter of the reward?"

     The governor bristles as though he'd received an electric shock. "Oh! Yes...yes yes yes...the reward. Cadsworth! Bring the reward for the capture of Maeve the Red!" From inside the mansion, a withered old man shuffles forward with a silver platter. Atop this platter is a fine velvet bag that jingled with silver. "Sir Roy! Please step forward and claim your reward!" Calls the governor, hefting the bag from the tray. Sir Roy ascends the small staircase and stands beside the governor, he leans in and takes the small bag, an odd smile crossing his face.

     "What was that, Lord governor?" Asks Sir Roy in a loud voice. The governor's face contorts in confusion. "Since I was the one to catch Maeve, you'll permanently restore my family's name?! How very generous of you!" The governor sputters in indignation, and Sir Roy faces the crowd, arms outstretched. "Truly the governor is a wise and generous man indeed!" The crowd erupts in cheers, and I smile as the first part of my plan is perfectly executed. I only hoped the rest of it would go as well.

     The guards attempt to remove Maeve from our company, no doubt to take her to the dungeons to await her sentencing. As they advance, Sir Roy steps between them and Maeve.

     "Sorry fellows, the capture and following incarceration of Maeve the Red is my privilege, not yours. Now if you will excuse me, I have a prisoner to escort." With a quick shoulder, Sir Roy pushes one of the guards out of the way. Dreven and I follow Sir Roy and Maeve into the prison and to an empty cell where we speak about the next step in my plan.

     "At last! My family honor is restored, and being that the governor is a very proud man, I do not think he will be going back on what the people believe was his word." Roy's grin had spread to the rest of the group.

     "Seems to be the Achilles heel of most politicians, or so I've found." Chuckles Dreven. He turns his gaze to Maeve. "Unfortunately, dear Maeve, the next part will be unpleasant but unavoidable. Do you think you can handle yourself in a cell for the day?"

     "Should not be too difficult. These people are easily fooled. Not as easily as others..." She nudges Sir Roy who rolls his eyes. "...but still, it is not difficult. I will await your return tonight. Now, before they get suspicious." Maeve steps into the empty cell and her bonds are removed. The door to the cell is closed and locked, the key placed upon Sir Roy's belt.

     "Make this convincing." I whisper to Sir Roy as we walk towards the main door. He nods and clears his throat.

     "And there you will stay, woman, until the governor finds the mercy to end your dreadful existence!" Bellows Sir Roy. The guards sneer down the corridor and we exit. As we make our way through the streets, Sir Roy speaks in a hushed tone. "Are you sure she will be okay in there for the day?"

     "Certain of it." Dreven responds. "Those men know what Maeve is capable of and are, rightly so, frightened of her." He gives a small laugh. "Let us adjourn to the tavern and flesh out the last part of young Reiken's plan, shall we?" We make our way to the small unnamed tavern and enter amid shouts of congratulations. As we sit, drinks are placed in front of us, along with hot food. Dreven reaches for his flagon, and to the horror of the tavern goers, it bursts into flame! Dreven recoils, as do Sir Roy and I. The flames quickly die and the tavern patrons scatter. The flagon was emtpy and slightly charred. We stared wide eyed at Dreven, who, at the moment, looked rather embarrassed.

     "What the blazes was that?!" Asks a rather astonished Sir Roy.

     "I would like to know as well!" I add.

     Dreven's face has flushed red, and he clears his throat before speaking. "Well...you see...my magic has a rather odd side effect..."

     Sir Roy slowly asks, "What do you mean...magic?"

     "I mean exactly as I say, Sir Knight. My magic has an odd side effect. I cannot come into contact with alcohol of any kind without it...well...you saw." Dreven motions to the charred cup.

     I chime in, "That would explain why you didn't drink any of it back when we were in Lendir!"

     Dreven nods. "Correct. It is a rather annoying thing, especially when people are kind enough to purchase drinks for me, but do not know what could happen. Though, now that we seem to be alone we can finally plan our next move."

     "Agreed." Adds Sir Roy, looking towards the door of the tavern.

     Later on that night, long after the denizens of the town had gone to bed, we made our move. We slip unnoticed from the tavern and make our way back towards the prison ward. We dare not enter through the front, as the guards, though dim, were vigilant. Especially with a dangerous criminal in their care. We sidle along the building, unseen in the dim moonlight. Dreven motions for us to stop and carefully peeks through the low, barred window. There sat Maeve, upon a small stool a corner of the cell. Dreven picks up a tiny pebble and tosses towards Maeve, who jumps and glances to the window. Dreven motions her to be ready and returns to our hiding place.

     "Okay, once I do this, we won't have much time before the guards notice she's gone, so be ready." Dreven places a hand to the wall. Sir Roy and I both nod to signify we were indeed ready. "Okay then. Here we go. Terra Galvanum." Dreven runs his finger in a wide circle along the wall, the stone and mortar splitting where it went. Once a sizeable ring had been made, we slowly worked the stone ring from the wall, and once it was clear, Maeve crawled through the opening. We replaced the stone, and quickly made our way to a lesser trafficked area of the town wall. Using the same spell, Dreven quickly cut an escape route for us. About the time we stepped through, we hear a commotion within the walls.

     "ALARM! She's escaped! To arms! Quickly!" Lamps begin lighting along the wall and we race for the thick woods, broad smiles on all of our faces. We run for what feels like hours before Dreven finally stops us, and we catch our breath.

     "My my! What a daring rescue if I do say so myself!" Dreven proclaims, his hair matted to his face with sweat.

     "You were truly an amazement Dreven! To think a man could use such sorcery!" says Sir Roy.

     "Indeed Sir Mage." Adds Maeve. "Were it not for you, I'd surely still be a bandit lost in infatuation, or worse, rotting in a cell. You've done Roy and I a great favor this day. If there is anything I can do to repay you, name it."

     "Funny you should mention that, Maeve." Replies Dreven. "There was something that I may need later on in my travels, and I was wondering if you would be willing to part with it."

     Maeve smiles and nods. "If I can give it, it will be yours."

     Dreven points to Maeve's belt. "That device you used to escape us in the forest. I may find use for it. That is what I would like my reward to be.

     "And so it shall. I have my Knight, and no longer need it." With a toothy smile, she tosses the device to Dreven, who quickly stows it in his satchel. Sir Roy claps me on the shoulder to draw my attention.

     "Young Reiken. You have done me a great service. You have my eternal gratitude, and the lineage of Sir Roy the Black Knight will remember you. I have little to give you, but I do hope it will suffice." He reaches to his belt and holds out the bag that held the reward for Maeve's capture. My eyes go wide as I handle the bag. It is heavy with the silver inside.

     "Sir Roy...this...this is more silver than I've seen in a lifetime. Do you truly wish to give this to me?" My hands are shaking so hard, the coins can be heard jingling inside the sack.

     Dreven steps over and places his hands on mine. "What he means is, we appreciate your incredibly generous gift, and we accept it gladly."

     "Very good. Very good." Replies Sir Roy, with a chuckle.

     "Where will you go from here?" Asks Maeve.

     Dreven scratches his head and looks around. "Perhaps northward. Seems as good a direction as any, and I hear the people are rather robust."

     "Robust is an understatement." Roy shuffles a bit in his armor. "They are an aggressive lot. Their love of plunder is only matched by their love of food and strong drink. If that is where you choose to go, then do so and godspeed Sir Mage."

     In answer, Dreven nods and dons his hat. Handshakes are exchanged, and farewells shared. As we parted ways, I glanced over my shoulder, and with a smile, I see glinting black steel and blazing red hair disappear into the forest. Dreven and I strike out for the northern lands, their mystery and adventure still unknown to me. I found myself looking forward to the journey and what would await us there, but...that, my friends, is a story for another time.

END CHAPTER 5

END TALE 2

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