Chronicles of Dreven Trenz

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

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5. Tale 2: Of Knights and Men

The Chronicles of Dreven Trenz: Tale 2: Of Knights and Men

CHAPTER 1

 

     "Welcome! Welcome! So glad you could join me here again at the Clock and Kettle! I was hoping you'd return...or...am I thinking of someone else? At any rate, I suppose you're here for a harrowing tale about...him. Well, I'm not the one to disappoint, so I shall regale you with a story from our adventures. I've just ordered some drink, so we shall be refreshed as I tell it."

     We had been traveling for who knows how long, Lendir far behind us. We had been talking at length of the things that had transpired there. Things that most folk never witness. We had retrieved a stone of great value, and in so acquiring the gem, ran afoul of a mad witch. Now, Dreven had dispatched the witch, and claimed the stone, but at the time, I did not know of its importance.

     "We have the stone now. Is this all we need?" I asked. I hoped it was, fearing that we'd have to face other witches, or worse should we continue.

     "Oh, this is just the beginning young Reiken." He responds. He holds the gem into the light. Despite the stone being an onyx, that is, a rather dark colored gem, I was able to see through it. The odd part was, it neither reflected light, nor allowed light to pass through it. As though the stone was made of pure darkness.

     "Just the beginning? What other horrors are we to see as we hunt for these materials? Need I remind you that I am but a youth? I can't follow you on these adventures if they could get me killed!" Despite myself, I had started to panic. If witches were the first things to overcome, what more could there be? The thought sent a shiver down my spine.

     "Calm yourself Reiken. Not all the gemstones require that we battle the horrors of the underworld. I have received word that our next treasure awaits us in a land far from here. Shall we be off?" I didn't know what he meant by 'far from here', but I had come this far, and though I feared what lay ahead, I fortified my nerves and nodded. We traveled for well over a week, passing through small villages along the way. Or, at least it felt like a week. Finally arriving at a small hamlet, we take stock of our funds and supplies. My tools, given to me by my master when I served as a blacksmith's apprentice, were still in good order. Our clothing, though worn and dirty, were in decent repair, save a few holes. It was the satchel that Dreven constantly carried that caused the most curiosity. Throughout our travels, that satchel should have fallen apart long ago, but it still seemed like it had just been purchased from the tanner's. Having decided that taking advantage of a local job would be most beneficial, we find the local constabulary to check their notice board.

     In large bold letters, a bill posted on the board read - WANTED - For larceny, kidnapping, murder, and associated illegal acts. Maeve the Red. Reward - 5000 silvers Dead or Alive. Dreven poked his finger at the poster.

     "Do you suppose we could find this person? Seems simple enough. That and five thousand silvers could tide us over for quite a while." His eyes seemed to spark with something that I could not comprehend at the time.

     "It seems a sight simpler than fighting another witch, that much is true." I respond. Dreven laughs loudly and claps me on the back. He pulls the notice down and just as we turn to leave, a man in black armor steps from a close building, and halts us.

     "Ho there. Might I ask why you took that? Maeve is my quarry and I won't have you claiming a reward that is rightfully mine." He stood rather tall, his armor, though worn, was well polished. The plates caught the noon sun and flashed like one could imagine a dragon scale would.

     Dreven was quick to reply. "No offense meant my friend! We are simply passing through and looking for work. Perhaps we can come to an agreement. My young ward and I have been on the road for quite a while, and our petty cash is dwindling. If we might aid you in your search, perhaps we could split the reward?"

     The armor clad man stared at us thoughtfully. A wry smile came across his face and he gave a slight nod. "I suppose I could use all the help I can get. Maeve has been a thorn in my side for quite a while. A pleasure to make your acquaintance. I am called Sir Roy; and you are?"

     Dreven removes his hat and bows low, his white hair cascades over his face. "Dreven Trenz, at your service. My cohort is known as Reiken." I give a quick bow and we both stand. "Is there somewhere we can go to discuss our plans? Possibly so we can learn a bit more about our new business partner?" Dreven asks.

     "Yes, there is a small tavern not far from here. We can speak there. Please, follow me." With a clank, Sir Roy spins on his heel and heads up the street. We follow suit, keeping close so as not to lose sight of the knight. We pass shops of all kinds, selling trinkets and baubles. Curtains and carpets. Even one selling exotic animals. As we pass, I notice the shop keepers covering their mouths as if trying to stifle laughter. "Curious." I thought. It was an odd way for folk to respond to a knight. I thought to bring it up to Dreven later.

     We found our way to the tavern. A small oak building with no sign out front. We enter amid the clamor of patrons enjoying the company of others, and music from a troupe of performers. We find our way to a table and sit, but before we can get any conversing done, a rather weaselly looking man steps to our table and squints at the knight.

     "Say..." the odd man begins, "Didn't I sell you off just a couple days ago? Yeah. I'd remember that armor anywhere! How did you manage to escape so quickly?" The knight's cheeks flush red and he becomes agitated.

     "I'm sure I don't know what you're talking about!" The knight insists, averting his eyes from the odd man. "I've never been a slave in my life! My father was a knight, and his father before him! As such, I am a knight myself! Now good day to you!" I recoil slightly at the knight's outburst, and the tavern goes quiet. I can feel all the eyes focusing on our table. With a chuckle, the odd man shakes his head and walks away, my eyes lock with Dreven's, a questioning look spreads across my face. Dreven raises an eyebrow and gives me the slightest of nods, then turns to the knight.

     "It appears, " Dreven starts, "that we have much more to discuss than just finding this woman. Perhaps we should have a meal, and speak at length." The knight nods.

     "You are right sir. I suppose I should tell you exactly why I'm interested in finding this woman." He calls over the serving girl and requests a meal. Little did I know what was in store for the three of us, but, the adventure was just beginning.

End Chapter 1

 

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