Author Topic: The Carefree Adventures of Asher Renodin  (Read 2960 times)

Renodin

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Hello again and welcome. Please, come closer. Take a seat, sure you can take mine, No Problem. I got a bit of tale for you here. Its a battle RP. First really big fight Asher ever got into. Its between Xavax, Alara and Minas Nova. Forces are 10k vs 16k in favor of Xavax. Without any further spoilers, enjoy!

p.s. This'll be a bit of a read, might want to wait till later if you don't have the time right now.


p.s.s. I am horrible at spelling / grammar. Don't kill me plz plz.


Pettifog in Priotness

Daybreak was long behind them as the sun was ever climbing closer to its zenith. Watching a pair of dismounted cavalrymen argue with a small group of locals it was becoming clear to Asher that it wasn’t going to work. These Priotnessians were hardy folk. Under the yoke of the bandits for too long. So long even that they doubted the word of men from Xavax. We really were here to save them though, not that they were easily convinced of that fact. So Asher thought.

Jogging along the path that led out of town and deeper into the bandit lands were a couple of weather beaten men. Strong jackets of quality leather, rough faces often enough sporting beards and personalised weapons. The luxury of being a scout really. You got to choose your own weapons and if you were good enough, were paid well. Asher looked at them with a curious eye, they strode with intend and that could only mean one thing. The bandit army was close. Throwing a last glance at his men trying to convince the locals of their good intent he pushed himself off the wall against which he had been leaning. ‘’Best get to the command tent. Gotta look at Strategy and tactics now.’’ The words spoken to himself in encouragement but his cheeks puffed as he said the words. Slowly blowing out the air as he walked towards the tent of the Xerarch.

The pavilion of the Xerarch looked as fierce as a tent could really. Crimson red and raven black. With guards in garb to match. Strong men selected for their ability and their proven loyalty.  They still looked on little Asher like he was a dreg from the deepest sewer. A turd made man. His eyes furtively scanned the Royal Guards, not wanting to draw their attention anymore than he already did with his presence. One of them moved to intercept but was too slow as Asher darted for the main entrance into the pavilion. Nearly tripping over the rug that heralded the interior floor.

Once inside he straightened himself up, paced his walking and tried to put on a regal face as his father would’ve done. Why was he trying to imitate his father? The thought invading his mind. ‘’There you are Master Asher. So good of you to attend. Swiftly now, the scouts are nearly done with their report.’’ The steward of the Xerarch said teasingly. Not wasting more time than a quick nod that he hoped would indicate his thanks to the man, Asher rushed for the main room in the pavilion. Pushing through another flap he entered a cloth walled room filled with the Imperial High Command. ‘’Yes, that is correct my Lord.’’ The scout intoned. ‘’The bandits led by King Robb have crossed into Priotness. By our best estimate they bring with them some 1.000 men. From what we could see half of that number were bowmen with the rest being infantrymen. Spear- and Swordsmen mostly of those and the remainder of the number, really 50 or so, cavalry.’’ The Scout stood candle straight as he delivered the information and the gathered men of gravitas nodded sagely.

Asher’s mind raced. That meant Xavax outnumbered their infantry but slightly trailed behind in the number of bowmen. Then again, we had the numbers in cavalry. Not to mention we also had special forces, although it was unclear which role they would take at this time. It did seem Asher arrived at the end of the meeting as the important men of the Imperial High Command filed out and left the pavilion. Asher tried to put on a brave face as he spotted Godric Tórrarin ka Habb. The man that agreed to mentor him. Not his best effort for Asher felt the failing corners of his mouth descending instead of rising. Soon the room was empty and Asher looked over at the battle map that lay on the main, big table the men had stood gathered around just moments before. It showed battle formations for the army and that of the enemy. At least, how they had predicted it. His eyes roamed over the map and spotted his own unit. In the back, ready to ride out and skewer the enemy infantry on their lances. Strangely enough had the High Command decided to put all the Archers and Infantry together in one big line with the Cavalry behind that. Looking at the map Asher assumed it was because of geography. There was no hill and neither any streams or thicket to use as cover or obstacle.

The rest of that morning and early afternoon was spend waiting. Strangely enough perhaps but it takes a long time for an army to move. More so when it decides to attack and you got to form lines and organize the defences for the camp. The same is true for the side that gets attacked, in this case Xavax. Asher had spend the time trying to inspire the men with simple words and gestures. The pad on the back he gave one man only earned him chuckles. The forty or so man appreciated the gesture but it was just awkward when a boy not even half his age tried to assure him, a veteran of 20 odd years, that things would be alright.  The rest of the time Asher made sure his gear was in tip top shape. His horse well groomed and he tried to eat something but his stomach would have none of it. He had to throw up right after he forced some broth down. Leaving a nasty taste in his mouth that some watered down wine annoyingly couldn’t wash away.

The banners of the enemy came into sight. They had opted to deploy their forces well outside of bowshot and in front of a flat plain. Asher rode on his spare horse, a slightly aged Rouncey horse  with a spotted brown coat, spots of white tilting to grey. His eyes straining and his hair being tugged by the wind. Which he noted was picking up. As he perused the enemy lines he could only make out nine banners. Some of them looked to be from Alara, the bandit realm but the others? A frown marked his face. ‘’Those are from Minas Nova.’’ The gritty voice startled Asher which in turn made his horse skittish for a moment. He turned to look who spoke and saw a man decked in partial plate. Slowly nudging his horse forwards to stand next to Asher. ‘’Euhmm, Thank you. Sir?’’ Asher managed to say. ‘’I’m not a Sir but I’ve seen enough battle and earned enough honours to have earned the privilege.’’ The battle scarred man proclaimed. Judging by his face and the multitude of little scars it bore, he may very well be right. Asher thought better of it than to make a dispute about decorum and simply urged his horse to return to camp and to his men. The battle would soon be upon them.

The Xavax lines were forming, the whole two of them. The first line a massive one that easily stretched over four times the enemy front line. As he had seen on the battle-map, archers were mixed in with Infantry and he had all the time in the world to observe them marching to their respective places. Elbows and shouts were employed as were horsewhips and even entire spears to dress the lines. Pushing men into position. Then a strange thing happened. Two banners pushed out from the massive Xavax front line and formed up a little bit ahead of the front line. One of Asher’s men pointed it out and chuckled. Followed by more nervous chuckling. Men will grab every opportunity for distraction just before battle. Asher’s face sported a thin lipped grin. That was all he could manage. The carnage ahead would be great and in the pit of his stomach, empty stomach at that, he felt dread.
His mind worked as he stared at the two banners who so boldly deployed ahead of the army. One he figured belonged to Lyanna of House Perry. The other though, proved harder to place. The man to his left, a young man only barely his senior spoke up. ‘’I believe that’s the banner of Noiram of House Kah, a Knight.’’ Asher nodded his thanks but didn’t speak a word. He recognized the banners of Robb of House Starfall, King of Alara. The Royal had amassed an enormous unit of infantry that had deployed in the second line, behind their archers. Looking over the Xavax host it was clear that based on Nobility present the Bandits were vastly outnumbered, nine to twenty-nine.

The flags were raised, the horns blasted and feet started to churn dirt into mud. The fresh grass being trampled until no green could be seen anymore. A solid wall of spears and swords and shields marched forwards. Leaving behind several huge groups of archers whom started to let arrows take flight. Some with practiced ease, others with an air of professionalism and others still stumbling to get a single volley properly timed. Overall it looked encouraging to Asher as he rode on towards them. Beside him, in the same mass of horseflesh he spotted The Vice-Marshal Godric’s unit. The man rode at the head of  over triple the number of horsemen he himself commanded. Beside the Vice-Marshal rode Elessa of House Raven, flanked by her Sister’s Justice. A unit of horsemen almost double his own number. And of course how could he miss it. Selenia of House Jevondair, the Xerarch of Xavax, their Queen, rode at the head of her Royal Guard, the Fearless. Cavalry only bested in numbers by those of the Vice-Marshal Godric himself.

The Bandit army congealed around their front rank. Receiving arrows and losing men. However, for every arrow they took, two were send in vengeance. Sir Noiram’s unit, the archers that pushed beyond the initial front line, were decimated. They started with some three dozen men, barely five lived after as long as it takes to tell you this. They ran from the field as fast as their legs could carry them. Sir Noiram’s banner fell to the ground and the Knight took arrows to his body. All Asher could see was the man being slammed to the ground with the great force of the impact of several arrows. A loud growl came from his left and with a surprised look Asher found it was coming from the Vice-Marshal Godric. The man’s eyes like hot coals.

Turning his eyes back to the battlefield Asher saw how Dame Lyanna’s unit took a battering but didn’t waver. The men stood their ground. Sheltering behind shields they wished to be a whole lot bigger than they actually were. The Dame of Igno wasn’t so fortunate however. The seeking steel of arrows had found her body and buried deep into her flesh. She collapsed back against one of her men and was dragged away to safety.

Asher’s heart fluttered with fear as his horse gained speed, trying to keep up with the other riders. His mind blank and grasping for answers as he saw Dame Lyanna’s men push forwards towards the enemy line. They were not only the tip of the spear but also being hammered with missile fire. Behind them it was easy to be courageous. Those men were showing what true heart was, couldn’t lag behind now. And the men and women of Xavax didn’t. They pushed as a solid mass towards the Bandit army.

As the lines came ever closer to one another it was time for Thunder. Hooves dog deeply into the soil and kicked up clods of dirt behind them. Mouths were frothing and nostrils flaring with hot, white steams of breath making long, ethereal moustaches on the horses. Cold sweat dripped from Asher’s brow and he hadn’t landed a single blow yet. Arrows flew overhead and he could hear them land behind him. Rattling off shields and burying into men who screamed in agony or suddenly ceased to make any sound ever again. Right next to him, as he passed a company of archers just about to fire, a hail, nay, a sheet of steel slammed into them. Killing them to a man. Arrows riddling the corpses. ‘’The gods smile upon us young Sir Asher! Only an arm’s length or we’d be dead too!’’ A battle-drunk horseman shouted over the carnage, followed by maniacal laughter that ended in a battle roar.

Suddenly a wave of steel and leather making the earth rumble. They appeared out of nowhere or Asher had been blind the whole time perhaps. Bannermen of Minas Nova were crashing into the Xavax line. A massive force of cavalry cut through the warriors of the Phoenix Army with glee. A perfect charge that sowed death that day. By sheer luck the enemy cavalry had missed Asher’s men but instead surged through the units of The Xerarch Selenia, Godric the Vice-Marshal and even the Gilded Company. A famed unit of infantry if for no other reason than that their leader, a man named Nicolas of House Harkle, was a man devoid of fear and led by example. Few were spared the lances and swords of the Minas Nova Horsemen but they themselves were spared none. After their action, and Asher had to twist in his saddle to see it happen, the Bandit Cavalry was massacred. Of the near one hundred horsemen only a fraction managed to escape instant death. They didn’t break though, they didn’t run. Men braver than Lions.
 
Somewhere in the fighting another Knight of Xavax went down. One those few remaining Minas Nova Horsemen brought down his broken lance upon Smiddich of House Fontaine inflicting a horrifying wound that saw his flesh ripped from his body. Replacing it with shards of wood and dirt. This wasn’t the last Noble wound however for the men of Raurin of House Cortosisskin found their mark. They had aimed high and fired over the Bandit front rank and right into the unit of King Robb of Alara. Much to their surprise did they hit the King himself. Rousing a messy cheer from the Xavax lines that blanked the battlefield for at least 5 heartbeats that devolved into animalistic screaming. A very long time indeed.

Now was the time. The lines were all but touching. Spears sought exposed flesh. The eyes of men and horse wide open. That silence that envelops every warrior at some point during any fight seemed to embrace every single one of them. The crunch of steel and bone tore everyone back to reality. Blood splattered upwards as polehammers devastated shields and armour. Men cries for their mothers and for mercy. Limbs were severed and warhounds strangled men where they lay, injured and helpless. Sobbing where men couldn’t move but still tried to avoid being trampled by friend and foe.

Still no target was close enough to engage for Asher and his men. He bit his lower lip in frustration. He felt pain and was shocked for a moment, where?! It came from his lip. He had bit it too hard. First blood can be inglorious if it happens like that. The Alaran King’s men weren’t ready to concede the battle yet, despite the large force ready to descend upon them. They rushed forwards in a mini charge, five paces perhaps, no more. And delivered a tremendous blow to all the men and women of Xavax that had crossed the entire battlefield just to fight them. Swords flashed and shields knocked men off balance. The King’s men were superbly trained and knew they could rely on their fellow man. Xavaxians died there, facing the King’s men. Asher lowered his lance to strike. He aimed for the closest of the King’s men and urged his horse on to greater speeds. ‘’On me!’’ His battle-cry. A bit too high pitched perhaps but his men responded. The Vice-Marshal Gordric had the same idea and together, unknowingly, charged King Robb’s elite. There was little space to manoeuvre. There was no time to hesitate. One moment Asher’s eyes were open and he saw his target. The next he blinked and in that tiny window of darkness he felt the impact. The lance cocked under his arm and gripped in his hand pulled violently until it snapped. His mount rushed on and crashed against something but it was too light to remain in place. It was knocked aside and Asher felt pain in his right leg as something struck it. When he opened his eyes again he saw that he was holding on to a short but sharp stick instead of a steel tipped lance. His leg was the vocal point of his attention as pain blossomed from it. He saw blood but he could still move his foot, it was fine a voice in the back of his head assured him.

Not wasting any more time, his hand instinctively went for his sword. A simple but good piece of steel that bore his crest upon the blade. Engraved just above the guard. Seeing enemies all around him he started chopping at anything in range that even remotely resembled an enemy. His lungs started to burn from the exertion but he didn’t stop. His horse, a beautiful beast, looked out for his safety like a guardian angel. Biting and kicking anyone that came too close.

Three heartbeats passed. Then three more and his sword lodged into the skull of a man. Never strike a man in the head with anything but the tip of the sword! He had ignored his teacher’s lessons.  Giving a feeble yet determined tug on the blade did little. The man to whom the skull belonged started the sway and down he went. Wrenching the blade from Asher’s hand. Fear paralysed him for a moment. His eyes darted from left to right, Sword! His mind screamed at him. Get a Weapon! ‘’Sir!’’ Asher looked to the left and but barely caught the sword that the blood covered horseman had lobbed at him. Was he friend or foe? The question shooting through his head. Confusion clear on his face. Looking back at the man, Asher saw him go down with a pike through the neck. His own blood filling in the few spaces where blood hadn’t stained him yet.

The feeling of rising bile greeted Asher as he took in what had just happened but he fought it down with all his might. All around him he saw Xavaxian warriors surging through the bandit ranks. Converging on any knots of bandits strong enough to remain in formation. Axes shattered shields and spears corralled any that tried to make a move. King Robb’s men tried to carry him away. Dragging at times, pushing at other.  The King was bleeding but fire of fire. Dame Gia of House Dragonfyre rushed forwards, her men and wolves making a beeline for the King. They surrounded his defenders and broke them piece by piece. The King Robb struggled but he was no Match. His honour once more stained with the reality of capture.

What remained after that was just a mob. A mob that tried to flee and to disengage. Battle was slaughter but from now on, only carnage could be applicable. Horsemen rode down any that they could. Hooves breaking bodies and lances stabbing at backs. Archers firing at will at whatever targets still presented themselves. Decorum? None of that today. The ground was mud. Not black or brown but the rust stained red kind. The kind that smelled of Iron and that saw islands of watery refuse float in it. The dead released their fluids and the flies were already feasting. Crows gathered in great numbers and eyes where but the first delicacies they would dine upon.

Where was Sir Asher though? His banner was still up. His men, or rather, some of his men still lived. They looked over the battlefield and saw hundreds of bodies. One screamed towards another. ‘’Here! Come quick!’’ They had found him. Asher had taken a huge slash across his thigh from which he had bled until his wits had departed his body. Fallen from his horse and presumed dead due to his sudden paleness. His men freed him from the small pile of dead he lay amongst and saw him to the medicus. ‘’Don’t you die Sir! Don’t you dare die!’’ A short pause. ‘’I don’t wanna be stuck here with all these foreigners.’’ His Lurian accent thick.