Princess Warrior - Part 4

 

Princess Warrior
Part 4
by Melanie Brown
Copyright  © 2016 Melanie Brown

John was pissed that he died on the beach of Normandy.

 


 

Everything looked to be in slow motion as my mind raced. All around me was death and mayhem. Utah Beach was a cake walk compared to all the close quarters fighting surrounding me. My anger was at an all time high. My focus had never been sharper. I’ve never felt so powerful in my whole life.

Concentrating on the tip of the sword I was wielding, I slashed it one direction and then the next, severing limbs from men and Huzars alike. I was covered in blood. Screams and the bellowing of the Huzars filled the air. It was like a nightmare. The flash of metal. A spray of blood. Screams of men and beasts.

Prince Pollar was suddenly beside me, his sword slicing the man beside me in two. Over the din of battle, he shouted, “Navah! Take these twenty men…” There was a sudden scream behind me. “… Take these nineteen men and just focus on the Huzars. I’m pulling the men back in a strategic retreat.”

As I pushed my sword through the head of a Huzar, I shouted to Geoffrey, “Retreat to where? The enemy is everywhere!”

Geoffrey grinned and said, “Back up that hill where we came down.”

Blocking a sword thrust from an Ragth soldier and then running him through, I said, “They’ll just follow us up the hill.”

Grinning through gritted teeth, Geoffrey said, “I’m counting on it.”

I looked at the prince with a questioning expression.

He said, “Holding just below the crest of the hill on the other side is over seven thousand men moving to a pincher formation. We’re going to lead the Ragth army right into the center and then cut them off and then close in and kill them to the last man. No quarter. I sent runners with those orders a few minutes ago. That’s why you have to eliminate the Huzars as we retreat.”

“Retreat!” shouted Geoffrey. “Reform on the other side of the hill!”

I turned to the small group of men Geoffrey had left me. I said, “Keep the swords off me while I concentrate on the Huzars!”

“Yes ma’am,” said a soldier next to me. Everyone around me looked tired and bloody.

The Ragth forces had stopped advancing to regroup. They cheered as they saw Geoffrey falling back. There were less than twenty Huzars left. But they could cause a ton of damage. They were clawing at the ground, impatient to be released to slaughter us.

I picked up a fallen lance from the ground. My small group stood in a line, ready for both a frontal assault as well as flanking maneuvers. The Huzars lined up in a spear formation and at a command barked by an officer in their ranks somewhere, they charged.

Summoning all my anger and power, I focused down the lance at the charging Huzars. The blue electric bolt sliced through four Huzars at once, their carcasses causing the rest of the Huzars as well as the charging soldiers behind them to stumble.

From our flanks charged fifty or so soldiers on either side of us. The troops formed a circle around me as they fought off the vicious attack. The Huzars were thundering closer as I let loose with another blue bolt.

Only two Huzars went down completely. One lost a limb, but the rest continued their charge. Huzars have absolutely no fear. As I was firing another blue bolt, two Huzars slammed into me, sending me cart wheeling back up the hill.

I sat up dazed, my eyes unable to focus for a moment. Then I saw the Huzars ripping the men protecting me to pieces. I picked up my dropped lance and shouted, “That’s enough!” Four Huzars surrounded me. I spun as I shot another electric blue bolt from the end of the shaft, cutting all four Huzars in half. The same bolt also cut about twenty Ragth soldiers in half as well.

There were two Huzars left. As they charged towards me, the rest of the Ragth forces charged screaming up the hill to attack Prince Pollar, whose men were just disappearing over the top of the hill. All the soldiers ran past me.

I aimed the lance and only a small, weak burst of light shot from the tip. It stunned one Huzar, but didn’t kill it. The other Huzar came running up on me, bellowing menacingly. I was exhausted. My strength was fading. As it approached, I screamed, “Fuck you!” and rammed my hand right down the beast’s throat up to my shoulder. I found its spinal column, wrapped my fingers around it and jerked back hard, snapping the monster’s spine.

The dazed Huzar came running towards me. With the last bit of strength I had, I picked up the Huzar I’d just killed and slammed it hard into the attacking Huzar, knocking it to the ground. I picked up a sword I found lying on the ground and quickly removed the monster’s head.

I collapsed onto the dead Huzar, breathing hard. I wiped my blood and sweat soaked hair from my face and watched the Ragth army run up the hill. After a few minutes of rest, I stood up and picked up another fallen lance. Leaning on the lance, I hobbled up the hill with the four remaining men with me.

As I crested the hill, I was completely taken aback by the barbaric spectacle before me. Prince Pollar’s men had now completely encircled the remaining Ragth army, which was still three or four thousand strong. Arrows from Geoffrey’s archers rained down on the center of the Ragth army as our forces slowly shrank the circle, butchering the tiring Ragth army. Geoffrey wasn’t going to leave one of them alive.

As the day wore on though, Prince Pollar was forced to relent on his no quarter pronouncement. Groups of Ragth troops began to lay down their weapons and surrender. Not being a barbarian, Geoffrey couldn’t bring himself to just murder unarmed men. Against his better judgment, he had his troops start to gather up the prisoners. By nightfall, the Ragth army was defeated.

That evening, I sat with Geoffrey and his officers in a circle around a large fire as we ate beans and something like beef jerky from a tin plate. There was no joking or laughing or even talking for that matter. We all sat there grimy and blood soaked. Everyone was tired and just sat there and stared at the fire.

As we were finishing our meal, such as it was, a soldier approached our little group by the fire. With him was a young man who was much too clean to have been in today’s battle, though his armor was smeared with blood as well.

The soldier said, “I beg the prince’s pardon, your grace. This palace guard has something important he needs to report to you. We’ve been riding for hours to get here.”

Geoffrey looked up with tired eyes and motioned for the young soldier to hurry. He said, “Report, son. I’m about to retire for the night. It’s been a very long day.”

Obviously frightened the young man said, “I have very bad news to report from Keelah. I… I was on guard duty at the rune vault. I don’t know how he got past all the guards in the city, but Lord Teufel appeared with ten men and two Huzars.”

Geoffrey stood up quickly, spilling his tin plate. “Lord Teufel! How? Is the rune safe?”

The young man shook his head. “Teufel brought the Huzars to breach the vault door. But I managed to dispatch both of them, sir.”

Geoffrey looked incredulous and said, “You? Alone? That’s not possible!”

The other soldier said, “He was found alone in the vault room with two dead Huzars, your grace.”

Geoffrey walked up to the younger soldier and said, “What’s your name, boy?’

He wouldn’t look up. He just quietly said, “Jason, sir.” I stood up, feeling suddenly cold and clammy.

Geoffrey approached Jason and said, “Tell me Jason. Is the rune safe?”

Jason again shook his head. Still looking at the ground, his eyes starting to water, he said, “No, your grace. Lord Teufel has it now.”

Geoffrey grabbed Jason by the shoulders and shouted, “The vault is protected from his black magic. He needs a Huzar to breach the wall!”

Tears started to flow down Jason’s cheek. He said, “He used a Huzar to break down the wall.”

Angry, Geoffrey shook Jason’s shoulder. “How, boy? You said he arrived with two and you killed two.”

Jason collapsed to his knees, not hiding the tears flowing from his eyes. Looking at the ground, Jason said, “He… he… I know it’s against the rules… I… My… my girl came with me.” Jason’s voice trailed away.

“And?!” shouted Geoffrey.

Jason started crying uncontrollably. He looked up at Geoffrey and said, “She… Lord Teufel…” Jason’s voice faded again. After a moment, with a cry in his voice, Jason sobbed, “He… he… he changed her! Into a Huzar! Before my eyes!”

With a gasp, I said, “Georgette?” Jason nodded and then I collapsed to the ground in a fit of sobbing. “Oh my God! No!”

Geoffrey stepped back from the crying form of Jason. His eyes focused far away and he said, “By the Gods! Lord Teufel has four runes! This battle… that cost us dearly… this battle was just a distraction? He sacrificed ten thousand men! Just how big is his army? With four runes, his strength will only increase!”

All of his officers were standing now. One said, “We must break camp at first light and hurry back to the city!”

Geoffrey shook his head. He said, “We must evacuate the city to Northfel. Send some people to the caves north of Keelah. We must defend the fifth rune in Northfel at all costs. We are all lost if Lord Teufel gets possession of that rune!”

I knelt beside Jason who was still crying uncontrollably. I said, “I am so sorry, Jason! Georgette was a wonderful girl. How horrible!” I hugged him as we both cried together.

*          *          *

It was still quite dark out. I was awakened by a hand slapping over my mouth and pressing a cloth against my nose and mouth. The cloth had a peculiar odor I couldn’t identify. But I suddenly felt weak. I couldn’t scream. My body just went limp. I felt myself being picked up and carried from my tent. Despite my efforts to struggle, I fell asleep.

When I awoke, I found I was naked and a very ugly man I’d never seen before was finishing tying my foot to the bed post. A single lantern, turned down low lit the small room. It seemed to be a one room building and still very dark outside.

I tried to sit up but found my arms as well as my feet were tied to bed posts. I felt dizzy. Whatever they had covered my mouth with was still affecting me. I had no strength. I tugged uselessly on the ropes. On the floor next to the wall was a dead body who I assumed was the actual owner of this shack.

My words slurring slightly, I said, “Where am I? Let me go.”

The ugly guy smiled a ghastly looking smile and said, “Oh. I can’t do that, Princess. Not until I have de-flowered you. Then I’ll let you go. Lord Teufel’s orders. I guess just killing you wouldn’t have the same emotional impact on the Prince as having to deal with a now completely useless heroine. He doesn’t want to make him angry. He wants him to feel defeated.”

The man was disgusting looking. His oversized nose bristled with hairs. His single eyebrow was bushy, he hadn’t shaved in days. The hair on his head was long, unkempt and greasy. His face was pock-marked and his crooked smile revealed many missing teeth and the ones that were there looked greenish. He was dressed in dirty, torn clothing.

There were two other men in the room. They probably helped carry me. The fact they had to carry me gave me meant I couldn’t be too far from the camp. I hoped anyway. The other two men didn’t look much different than the one talking.

“Can I have a whack at her too, Gordy?” said one of the other men.

Gordy grinned and said, “We all do. But I get the honor of destroying Keelah’s greatest weapon.”

“Why you?” said the third man. “My dick’s bigger than yours.”

Scowling as he wiped his runny nose, Gordy said, “Lord Teufel hired me. And I hired you. So I get first dibs.”

Grinning at me, Gordy undressed revealing extraordinarily hairy arms, hands and chest. “Look what I have for you, goddess.” He laughed as he fondled his penis.

Even drugged, I barked a short laugh and mumbled, “I’ve seen bigger cocks on five year olds.”

Still grinning, Gordy climbs onto the bed and pushes his penis against my lips, trying to force it into my mouth. He said, “Better get used to seeing these me’ lady. Lord Teufel told me that after he finishes conquering the remaining kingdoms, he’s putting you in his royal brothel. If you’re still alive that is.”

Laughing, he rubbed the tip of his penis back and forth across my lips. He was already leaking and again I uselessly tugged against the ropes that held me. I wanted desperately to wipe my mouth.

Pressing more into my face, Gordy said, “Come on, Princess. You know you want a taste.”

One of the other men said, “Come on Gordy. Get it over with. We don’t have much time. They’ll discover her missing soon.”

Pushing his penis one last time against my lips, Gordy slid down the bed towards my vagina. He said, “Oh all right. Don’t worry. Both of you will get your turn.”

Smiling his ghastly smile at me as he positioned himself over my womanhood, Gordy said, “I ain’t never fucked a princess before. After we’re done, you’ll just be a common slut.”

I closed my eyes tightly and tried to clinch myself closed. I knew that wouldn’t stop him though. I didn’t want to have sex with Geoffrey and he’s very handsome, so I sure as hell didn’t want this sewer rat inside me.

Keeping my eyes closed I thought why was he waiting?

One of the other men shouted, “Oh shit! Run!”

I opened my eyes and looked up at Gordy. There was an arrow protruding from his eye socket, blood running down his face. The window behind him was broken. He then slid lifeless to one side and off the bed.

The door slammed open and Jason burst into the small room. Gordy’s henchman grinned and said as he drew his sword, “Better run home to mommy, boy.”

Stone faced, Jason said, “I killed two Huzars single handedly.” And with one mighty arc of his sword, he severed the man’s head from its shoulders.

Two more soldiers rushed into the small room. Jason was raising his sword against the last of Gordy’s henchmen. I managed to mumble, “Take him prisoner. Find out what he knows.”

The two soldiers roughly grabbed the man and dragged him from the small building. Jason looked quickly around the room and pulled a sheet from the floor and covered me.

As he used a knife to cut the ropes, Jason said, “My Lady, are you alright? Were you violated?”

I felt my strength starting to return. I smiled at Jason and said, “No. Almost though. But you, just like the cavalry and Errol Flynn, arrived just in the nick of time.”

Looking confused Jason said, “Who?”

I shook my head as I stood up from the bed, still clinging the sheet to my naked body. I said, “Never mind.” I wiped my mouth vigorously with the sheet.

Prince Pollar rushed into the room. “Navah! Are you alright? What’s going on?”

“Geoffrey!” I shouted and rushed to him. I threw my arms around him and kissed him. Embarrassed, I took a step back. What the hell am I doing?

“I’m alright,” I said. “Thanks to Jason.”

Holding me with an arm around my waist, Geoffrey turned to Jason and said, “What, by the gods, is going on?”

Holding his head up and looking Geoffrey directly into his eyes, Jason said, “I was bedded outside the princess’ tent, your Grace. Some odd sounds awoke me in the middle of the night. I was very tired and it took me a few moments to come fully awake. When I did, I saw the two guards that were posted outside the princess’ tent were dead with their throats cut. The tent’s door flaps were open. I looked inside and saw that the princess was missing.

“I ran a short way outside the camp and started looking. I saw what appeared to be three men carrying something. I ran after them to see where they were going. I knew they couldn’t go far carrying what I guessed had to be the princess. I was afraid if I ran back to tell someone, I’d lose track of them.

“I followed them long enough to see them bring her to this small house hidden in these low hills. Not knowing what I would be up against, I didn’t think I could be much use alone. I rushed back to the camp to get a few soldiers and to send one to get you, your Grace. I’m sorry that I didn’t wait for you, your Grace. But time was of the essence.”

I said, “One second more and I would have been raped. You’re my hero, Jason.”

Setting his jaw, Geoffrey said, “I am grateful to you, boy. You saved the princess’ virtue.”

I said, “You should reward him somehow, Geoffrey.”

Prince Pollar studied Jason for a moment. Finally he said, “I’m not sure what to do about you. You brought a woman with you while on duty. You did singlehandedly kill two Huzars. But the girl became a Huzar and Teufel got the rune anyway. But, if the girl wasn’t there, he would have just made you a Huzar and would have gotten the rune anway.” Jason looked to the floor.

I disengaged myself from Geoffrey and stepped over to face Jason. I said, “Well, I’m going to say thank you.” I kissed Jason on the cheek and stepped back next to Geoffrey.

Inside, I couldn’t decide if I wanted to hold blame against Jason for Georgette’s fate or not. She was one of my attending maidens and lately my confidant. But Jason loved her and his emotional turmoil must be horrendous. Was that not punishment enough? I’ll have to discuss it with Geoffrey later.

As he slid his arm again protectively around me, Geoffrey said sternly, “Yes. Thank you. Now hurry back to camp and fetch your princess a horse. She will not suffer further indignity by being carried back to camp like a sack of potatoes.”

“Yes your Grace,” said Jason as he bowed and then rushed from the house.

Alone once more, Geoffrey looked down into my eyes and said, “Thank the gods you are safe.” He bent his head down and kissed me deeply. I slid my arms around his neck and shoulders and held him tightly. I felt myself getting wet.

In my mind, I started running through all the names and faces of baseball players I could remember…

*          *          *

“What’s wrong now, my son?” asked the king who was looking even older than he did before. The king, Geoffrey, myself, one of Geoffrey’s generals and the high priest were all gathered in the King’s chamber to discuss siege plans and other options we may have. “Is the civilian evacuation not progressing fast enough?” Geoffrey was late to the meeting and was looking pretty haggard himself.

“That’s doing well enough,” said Geoffrey with a far-away look. I don’t know when he had last slept. “Captain Jason is leading in that effort.” He paused and took a pained look. “Father, I bring more bad news. Eastling has fallen. Teufel rides towards us with at least twenty thousand men and five hundred Huzars. Just as with Anyrn, Eastling has joined forces with Teufel. Wielding four runes makes his army virtually unbeatable.”

The general said, “We have the princess, your Grace. With her abilities and with her leading the defense, the men will be inspired to fight even harder.”

Geoffrey looked up with tired eyes to the general. He said, “Save the propaganda for the civilians, general. We’d need twenty princesses to defeat Lord Teufel. His army grows almost daily.”

The high priest said in his old, rumbling voice, “Don’t discount Princess Navah, your Grace. Her power still grows.”

Meekly I said, “I’m still just one person. I can’t be everywhere.”

Frowning, Geoffrey said, “And you can still be hurt, incapacitated, drugged and who knows what else. Not to diminish your importance Princess, but we can’t rely solely on you.”

The general cleared his throat and said, “We already have spotters on the highest hills and in watch towers trained to use mirrors and that Morse Code the princess taught us. I’m confident we can locate those who are controlling the Huzars.”

Geoffrey made an attempt to smile. He said, “Excellent, general. We’ll need to act swiftly once they start spotting. As soon as the enemy catches on to what they’re doing, those men will become targets.”

Geoffrey stood up and looked around the room at all our faces. He said, “Just so we’re all clear on the plan, I’ll state it once more. Correct me if I’m wrong somewhere. The enemy must pass through us to reach Northfel. Today when the last civilian has crossed it, we’ll destroy the bridge on the road to Northfel.

“We have three thousand men hidden as well as we can in the jagged mountains and forests between Eastling and Keelah. Once Teufel’s army has passed them, they will attack the rear forces. It’s a suicide mission I’m sorry to say, but it’s just to try to reduce his forces and cause a distraction. The Huzars are all leading his army.

“The city’s outer wall is just too long to adequately defend. We’ll have the wall lined with archers who will launch their arrows as soon as the enemy comes within range. Just before the wall can be breached, everyone is to fall back to the castle walls. Again, the archers will try to reduce the enemy before they reach the wall. We’ll have pots of boiling oil and lead ready to pour over the walls once the enemy gets near the wall.

“When the castle wall is breached, all remaining will fall back to the castle and use the tunnel that leads to the back road to Northfel. Everyone must hurry as the soldiers guarding that tunnel have orders to collapse it as soon as the enemy enters the castle. They won’t even wait for me.

“Once we arrive in Northfel, we’ll join in their defense. We must defend Northfel at all costs. We are all as good as dead if Lord Teufel takes the fifth and final rune. No power in this realm will be able to stop him.”

The general stood up stiffly and said, “We won’t fail you, your Grace!”

Geoffrey looked grimly at the general. He said, “The gods help us all if you do.”

*          *          *

I swallowed audibly as a coldness shot down my spine. It was an incredible sight. Exiting the forest into the mile wide clearing surround the city walls marched five rows of one hundred Huzars each. Behind them were a thousand archers followed by ten thousand mounted men. I couldn’t see beyond that. The general, Geoffrey and I all stood on the roof of the highest tower on the outside wall. The king and high priest had already been sent on their way to Northfel.

Inside the clearing we had placed large rocks to make it harder to move in siege towers. Pits had been dug with the bottom lined with pointed sticks and then the holes covered with branches. The enemy archers would have to come well within to our archers range to be effective. Brightly colored pennants on both sides flew high on poles. Orders were heard being barked from the enemy as they stood at the edge of the clearing.

The general pointed to our left. He said, “A signal is coming in. What the princess calls Huzar wranglers have been spotted standing under that overhanging rock on the grassy knoll to our right. I can just barely see them.” The general pointed in the direction and I looked down his arm.

“I see them,” I said. I lifted the spear that was tipped with a new special alloy that was hoped to make the blue bolt travel more efficiently. I had reached the point where I no longer needed blind anger to create the blue shaft of power. I sighted down the shaft of the spear at the base of the over-hanging rock. With intense concentration, I focused on the rock. An electric blue shaft of light blasted into the base of the over-hanging rock. The rock fell, crushing the men below it.

Half the Huzars suddenly went wild, attacking other Huzars and any enemy soldier within reach. The carnage was unwatchable as bodies, human, animal and Huzar alike was ripped to bloody shreds. The enemy soldiers broke rank and ran like hell in all directions.

It took only a couple of minutes for the Huzars to be brought back in control. But by then, dozens of Huzars lie dead or with missing limbs. It was harder to evaluate the damage to the soldiers as there wasn’t much left of those that were attacked.

The general said, “Another signal. On that hill top almost dead ahead.”

Again I sighted down the shaft and this time I saw the men fall directly from the blue bolt. And again the Huzars went out of control, ripping into their own ranks and ripping enemy soldiers apart.

The general said, “That last watcher is signaling he’s under attack.”

The Huzars were back under control. The general kept looking at the hill tops. He said, “No one is signaling.”

There was a sudden scream from the Huzars in the front ranks and a yell from the soldiers behind them. The Huzars suddenly started to run across the clearing.

It had begun.

*          *          *

End of Part 4



If you liked this post, you can leave a comment and/or a kudos!
Click the Thumbs Up! button below to leave the author a kudos:
up
198 users have voted.

And please, remember to comment, too! Thanks. 
This story is 4555 words long.