Mortog finds some more action and Dargus and Darcey finally make moves.
| Dopey's Brother: A Prophecy Rises Da big reveal
Da big reveal
With one foot in front of the other, she started at a steady pace home but soon she found her feet carrying her much faster than she thought and arrived at home in record time. She needed to check on the girls. She now regretted her decision to help in this project. She and her unwitting family had just become targets. Something she would now have to figure out how to fix, and soon.
Her three daughters were asleep in their rooms and her 'darling' husband was sound asleep in his comfy chair in the office.
'I's didn't even see Dargus down there at da execution. Where's was he?' She thought as she sat at the kitchen table picking at a plate of leftovers. 'Why was it so existential dat he be da one te meet with dat lady?' She couldn't fathom why. None of it made any sense to her right now but that would soon change. She would make sure that she found out exactly what was going on, because she already knew that they didn't tell her everything, but what was so secret that they had to hide it from her? After all, she had to be their most loyal recruit.
While deep in thought a loud boom echoed outside with enough force to cause the ground to shake. She stood up in knee jerk reaction to the impending threat; she knew that's what it was right off the bat. She ran to the window to see flames coming from a home up the road on top of the hill. She ran outside to see if she could get a better look when Forge showed up right beside her, and then the girls.
"What was dat?!" He asked still in his robe. She pointed up the hill and they both saw flames erupting from a house.
"Take da girls an go back inside an lock da doors." She told her husband who just stared at her looking dumbfounded. "It's a simple task, Forge now do as I's say, fer yer own safety, please!"
With that she ran toward the house to see if she could help anyone, but by the time she got there, it was too late. The house had been turned to rubble and was still hot on fire.
'My gods! I's hope there was nobody in dare!' She thought to herself. She saw one of the neighbors, Mrs. Direclaw standing outside her own house right next door.
"Were they in dare!?"
Mrs. Direclaw just started to cry and sob. Darcey just looked back at the burning house. "That was Jody's house." She said under her breath. Smoke continued to bellow from somewhere underneath the rubble. 'She must've been part o' da resistance. Is dat what lay in wait fer me now?' She thought in total fear. 'I's got te get me family safe somehow, especially now that I's have da favor o' da king.' She thought sarcastically to herself.
As she stood there helplessly gawking at the burning house, she saw three Larthapeds with huge tanks of water on their backs and one that held a crew of dwarves. They began to drench the house with water so they could begin pulling the rubble out of the large pile to look for any remnants of dwarves that may have been inside.
One of the city guard came up to talk with her.
"Okay, do ye know what happened here?" The guard asked her. "Did ye see anyone around da house before da explosion took place?"
"No, I's lives down da street an heard da blast an came runnin up here as soon as I's could, figurin I's could help in some way."
"So what yer tellin me is dat you saw or heard nothin?" he asked. "Way te look out fer yer neighbors." He said under his breath so that she could barely hear him.
"Excuse me?" Darcy said rather irritatedly. "Why in da hells would ye say dat, I don't go snoopin around me neighbors houses in da middle o' da night?"
"I'm askin da questions here, who be this young lady standin next te ye." He looked briefly over at Mrs. Direclaw and she went running into her house sobbing. "No matter, where were ye when da explosion happened?"
"Wow, ye be askin all kinds o' stupid questions tonight."
"Just answer da question."
"I be in me kitchen cleanin up after me kids an eatin me some leftovers."
"An ye be sure's ye didn't happen te look out yer kitchen window an see somethin? Anythin?" He pestered.
"I's can't even see her house from any o' me windows. Why ye be askin me all these questions and not Mrs. Direclaw or da other neighbors?"
"If'n we have any other questions fer ye, we'll be in touch." He glared at her, turned around and left completely ignoring her questions.
'This can'no be good, da way he just questioned me is a bit creepy. He couldn't have known I was involved at da square. . . Could he?'
"Aye, I's be thinkin day be goin into those catacombs dare." Snaznock said as he put his tracking device in his pocket and stood up. "They be headed down dare to find whatever treasures deeze two Harpies had. Deeze stupid goblins had nothin an Mortog knew it, so's day went down dare."
"An weeze supposed te follow 'em?" Thodec whined. "Can't we just find out where day be comin out from an catch em dare?"
"Fool! Tell me where day be comin out from." Snaznock challenged as he noded his head from side to side asking him to point out a direction that they should go. "Dare is no tellin where da tunnels lead te. We could be hikin fer days an be on da complete opposite side o' where day be comin out from. No! We be needin te find out where day be. Down into da tunnels we go! An dare aint no arguin!"
Thodec looked down to the ground and kicked a rock to the far side of the encampment. He looked around at all the wonderfully colored flora and fauna that covered the landscape. 'I's be much rather stayin up here an battlin whatever is out here than go down into dat smelly pit o' a dungeon.'
They headed down into the catacombs. They started to see unmarked graves on the walls and most of them look human. After about an hour of hiking on a downward grade they came to a fork in the tunnel.
"Well's we can always take one tunnel and see where it leads or we can split up an hope deeze tunnels are short an we can yell fer ye's if'n we be findin somethin."
"I don'no maybe we should all stick together an discover what we can."
"Bah quit yer belly-achin Thodec, I's da tracker an I's figure out da way te go!"
He surveyed the dirt in front of them and decided that the right path is the way to go, but he has a suspicion that the left path is the only way that'll lead them to the party. They head off down the right path, the way the original party went.
Phaebeus sat there watching Beltron who was without a care. He sat there and knew at this moment he could best him. So he thought of something clever. Something only a mage of his stature could think up. Phaebeus knew that Beltron had enlisted the help of the whisps, which was only obvious. That would be the first thing he would have done. Yes, he knows Beltron all too well. He's been in the Queens favor entirely too long, it was time he fell from grace. It was time to turn those whisps against him. He flailed his hands outstretched wide and chanted a chant that only the whisps could hear, and with some time and convincing all of them were loyal to Phaebeus now. He instructed them to do Beltron's bidding for now. He would unleash their wrath later when it most suited him, but first, what about those kids? What could he do? He thought about it for a second and realized that he had no idea where they even were. 'I must scry them.' He thought. 'They would obviously be on their way here. So let's give them some obstacles whilst I find this artifact before they do, whatever it might do. I'll send some whisps their way; I doubt in their experience that they've ever dealt with undead creatures before. That outta slow 'em down. All I have to do is figure out where they are and open a portal and throw some whisps at them. That should do away with them all together!'
He knew sitting down to scry would take some time so he put a magical marker on his rival and set down too it, and he sat there and performed all he needed to do.
Doc woke up first. He seemed well-rested and even a bit chipper.
"So did we's win?" He asked as he woke up. Mortog and Jackel had managed a fire while Branthony had found himself an old worn out piece of armor that had a hole in the side of it. He decided that maybe Ryuul could wear the other armor, after all it was about her size, maybe a tad bit large but probably fixable at the town ahead that they could hopefully find. "Food, I's be needin some food please."
"Okay, okay, I got ye Doc hold on." Mortog went into the pack and retrieved two packs of meat. Doc nodding one of the packs away and Mortog just nodded to Ryuul who seemed to be stirring as well. He handed her the extra meat pack as she awoke.
"Where are we!?" She sat straight up and her eyes darted across the room frantically as if searching for something. "Are we safe?"
"Yeah, we defeated those two spiders an even scouted ahead te make sure there were no more laying in wait."
"Well that was stupid, with both your healers down you could've gotten yourselves killed!" She told them in an irritated tone.
"Bah! Da passage only be big enough fer one o' 'em." Mortog told them, Jackel just held his tongue because he thought the same thing, but also welcomed the challenge if something did happen.
"And what about her babies? They're more deadly than their parents!"
"How ye be knowin dat one o' 'em be female?"
She sat up and ate some of the meat. "See that one with the brown eyes, That's the female, the male has the brightly colored luminescent eyes, like that one buried in the passageway. He attracts the female, at least that's the way it works with normal spiders, and it's my guess that this breed mates for life, that's why they came out together. So let's be on the lookout for their kids. But also know that they may not perceive us as a threat, they might just be too young and it is early in the season. So don't get all half-cocked." She sat there and ate her food in silence in handfuls now. Mortog just took in all she had to say and looked over to Jackel, who had nothing to offer.
Mortog looked around the giant room full of boned graves, just like he had dozens of times since the two had passed out.
Mortog let Ryuul and Jackel have it out on the practice floor before she was ready to go.
They gathered their belongings and anything they thought could be sold at a good price and headed down the catacombs even farther. Cocoons were spotted all over the area in small alcoves and divots in the walls even inside the tombs.
"Watch out for more spiders, there are too many egg sacs here to be laid by one spider," Ryuul warned the crew. Mortog just nodded.
They come across a small room about an hour down.
'Durn, it looks like someone else beat us te it.' Mortog thought to himself looking at two rather large dead spiders.
"It be lookin like these two were killed long ago." Jackel said.
"Yeah, so what laid those egg sacs in da passageway?" Branthony added as he looked around with both swords at the ready.
"Could ye be wrong in how many eggs they can lay?" Mortog asked her.
"I guess I could be, I have never seen them that big before, so maybe that is normal for them. They could also take longer to gestate than to make more eggs."
"Well I hope ye be bein right with that assessment. Let's keep moving." Mortog told the group, with Jackel leading so he could find traps.
"Stay's here." Jackel said and Branthony followed like they had discussed. Branthony was Jackels protection in case there was a monster of some kind. This time he was able to sense the danger but he couldn't find a trap anywhere, not on the floor, not in the ceiling or across the room. He was a little baffled but moved carefully into the small room. It had enough room for the entire party to stand side by side.
They had just reached the end of the room when a door opened in the ceiling and out fell a bunch of bones. Within seconds they were forming skeletons with short swords on the attack. Branthony was already on one of them.
'This guy be good!' Branthony thought as he was parrying and trying to get in a shot at the target in front of him. It worked its sword like a master. 'This one must have been a teacher or somethin cause he's good.' Branthony still struggled with his skeleton.
"Guy's we be needin ye, get in here now!" Jackel screamed as the other skeleton formed in front of him and began swinging his sword at him. Jackel blocked each thrust and swing with his bow using it as a staff, he was able to crack it in the center of its spine causing the bones to scatter across the floor.
Mortog and the healers came into the room to see Branthony on the defensive with his skeleton. Mortog jumped in the fray and with a cross-cut to the skeletons back and sent bones flying. They looked over to Jackel just in time to see the other skeleton reform and attack once more. Branthony quickly looked back at his own skeleton to watch it begin to reform as well.
"I's be wishin fer da spiders now!" Mortog yells in frustration as he takes another swing at the new skeleton. "Got anythin in yer head that'll fight these things?!"
Suddenly two streaks of lightning struck the skeletons at the same time incinerating one of the skeletons into a heap of dust on the floor where it stood.
"One down, sweetheart" Jackel yelled as he swept the leg of his skeleton with his bow causing it to crash onto the ground and loosing that leg in the process, but just like before it quickly rejoined the other bones in its body.
Mortog, Branthony, and Jackel all took turns dismantling the skeleton so it would take more time putting itself back together than attacking them.
"We could do this all day but I'd really rather not hun, can we hurry it up a bit?" Mortog looks back at Ryuul before his next swing at the creature scattering its bones once more.
While it was reforming it just crumbled back onto the floor.
"Thanks hun." Mortog stated looking at the pile of unmoving bones.
"That wasn't me." She said as they all turned to look behind her, and there sat Doc.
" I's just consecrated da thing." He said simply. "It be one o' my abilities dat I didn't knows I's had, but I's thought about what Ryuul told me's an decided te try te make dat unholy thing holy an it just worked."
"Good work Doc!" Mortog yelled. "I's be encouragin ye te keep learnin, maybe Ryuul can teach ye tonight when we's finally stops te rest."
"Magnificent!" Came a loud yell further down the tunnels. In walked a hairy little man with a staff, he was about the size of a dwarf. "I'll have to reset the trap I imagine but what a marvelous show, congratulations my friends and welcome to my home! Yes, yes, indeed, welcome, welcome."
They came to where the spider lay dead. It was a dead end; they would have to go around and take the other tunnel they saw a while back. When they got to the other tunnel it quickly went from dirt to a stone built passageway. Small rooms adored this passageway. They were just wider than the tunnel itself and a bit longer than it was wide. They found it odd that there were no longer any tombs along the walls. They were nothing but hard, smooth, stone. They were almost like glass but completely opaque.
"I's don'na need te tell ye's te be careful in deez rooms," Snaznock told the team.
They went through the first room guided by Snaznock who also happened to be an excellent rogue. He found nothing on his way through the first room. He looked for traps all along the passageway to the next room and found absolutely nothing. He was beginning to think there were no traps in this maze of tunnels at all until he heard a click that came from behind them. Everybody turned around to see Thodec, who was holding up the rear this time, standing completely motionless on one of the stone tiles.
"Uhm guys?" He called out. "Everybody move to da other side o' da room, please. I's has no idea what dis trap does."
"If-n it's even a trap at all," Snaznock said. Without warning the stones surrounding him began to buzz and hum.
"Well that's not good." Graggum said.
"Apparently you have to step on da right tiles te get out, ye think ye can handle dat Thodec?"
"I's hope so Snaznock, I's has no intention of becoming roast dwarf!" He sarcastically remarked.
A few tiles in front of him turned black for about a minute. It then went back to being a grey floor tile. A minute or so later another tile lit up about the same distance but off to the left.
"I think it's designed so that you have to jump on da tile dats lit up black so ye don't get electrocuted. Next time one turns black, jump to it." Snaznock said and the other dwarves look at him hopefully. "Ye know ye can do it! Ye has te!"
Another black tile lights up and Thodec jumps for it. He landed on it perfectly. The next one lights up and he made that one as well. Thodec tries to jump to the next black tile. It vanishes and Thodec falls to the stone floor face first. They look on in horror as their friend; their loved one, gently fries on the floor. There was nothing anyone could do now that all the tiles were humming, there were no more black tiles. They waited and waited, but the electricity in the floor never relented. Halgic decided to take a step on one of the tiles and felt the power surging through him; it took the other dwarves to pull him back away from that part of the room.
"This is some insane magic! How can it stay on dis long?" Asked Halgic. "Magic spells can't last dis long! Day just can't!" Halgic was frustrated. He wanted what everyone else wanted, to go out and retrieve their friend's body, but as he felt as they all felt, it was useless.
"C'mon, let's git outta here an find dem kids!" Snaznock told everyone.
"I's be havin some words wit dem when I's see's 'em!" Tranvock shouted. "Can we kill 'em now?!"
"No, we's still can't kill 'em."
They all walked in silence through the remainder of the rooms with no more incidents. The stone turned back into dirt and they were at the room with the spiders that the crew before them had dispatched.
"Day be bein here, dis is where da other tunnel would have taken us. It's their fault Thodec's dead! This wouldn't have happened if day hadn't killed da stupid spider in da freakin tunnel!"
"Calm down Tranvock. We'll find 'em and den we'll have sometin te say te dem, but still no killin! Day didn't know dis would happen. I's ain't blamin dem." Snaznock told his team.
"Yeah, well's I's do!" Tranvock yelled.
"Let's keep movin, we's bound te catch up wit 'em soon, day had te stop here an rest, let's not do da same."
And with that the team made their way down the tunnel not knowing that they were just behind them.
"Dargus wants ye te meet him at da rink today after work." She's seen this woman before, she's the same woman that she saw the last time she was with Thrazzulin. She was the mean one.
'Finally, I's get te see Dargus an know dat he's okay.' She let out a sigh of relief and her muscles visibly loosened up a bit. She had asked her boss to let her off early today but was unable to get permission to do so. 'He probably won't be dare till later anyway. Dare's no use in goin early just te sit an wait's around.'
The day dragged on and on. It felt like it was purposely going as slow as it possibly could; so when the fruit stand closed she was out the door like a bat out of the nine hells! She moved like fire to the rink where she knew she would finally get to see Dargus. Her feet pushed the pebbles that now lay atop the cobblestone street until she figured out that she was running. 'Slow down girl, you's get dare soon enough.' She had to force herself to walk at a leisurely pace so that no one would suspect anything, especially when she knew that the king was undoubtedly watching her every move to see when she would make her mistake and give everything away. This meeting with Dargus is typical and not out of the ordinary.
She finally arrived at the rink where they were more than likely going to spar today so that he could tell her what's what. Sure enough, Dargus was waiting for her with a smile and his typical stance, leaning up against the wall with his arms folded across his chest.
Darcey was so excited to see him that she ran to him and jumped into his arms and kissed him square on the lips. She was so overjoyed to see him alive and kicking that she didn't even realize she was kissing him. He gently put her down.
"I's sorry, I got carried away." She said with her head down. He reached his hand down below her chin and lifted her face to force her to look into his eyes.
"I was expecting this sooner or later and you don't have to worry. . . I feel da same way, but we can't unless you say it's okay. An by dat I's be meanin dat ye tell yer husband about us, if there is going to be an 'us'."
"I's not even sure he'd care anymore, he probably figures that he's lost everything else why not me too."
"We need te talk. Let's get in da rink and start sparin"
"We are talkin." She tells him.
"No, about what happened yesterday at da courtyard. Ye wasn't supposed te be dare, dat wasn't in da plan. Thrazzulin made dat plan without da rest o' us knowin an from what I be hearin, ye got a target painted on yer back now, as well as yer family." He looked down and away as she gave him a right hook across the jaw. He did a spiral kick and sweeps out her leg but not before she grabs onto his armor and pulls her down on top of her.
"I's know, I be needin te lay low fer a while."
"We have a safehouse that we can put yer family in but ye have te stay out an take yer chances." He says rolling off of her and getting into the ready position. "Also ye can have no contact with Thrazzulin or anyone else in dat cell. It bein too risky. Now this next thing be very important. . . ye can'no see yer family fer a while, it bein fer dare safety."
She just stopped and looked at him as he clocked her right across the jaw, but only hard enough to unbalance her stance.
"I's bein da one te put yer family somewhere's where ye'll not find 'em even if ye looked fer 'em."
"So it all has te go through ye?" She asked taking a light jab at him. "Will I's ever get te see me girls again?" She asked with great concern in her voice.
"Only when I's can safely bring them te you. But ye'll never know where they are, I's sorry hun, dats da way it has te be. We should meet at The Cherub tonight and discuss what you're thinkin, Thrazzulin was very adamant that you had a very important idea. We can talk about it there, with all da other dwarves around."
"Okay." She said and got into position and sucker flipped him. He was now on his back and she felt much better. Though she felt like an arse for jumping into his arms when she first saw him, she figured, 'What da hells, I broke dat seal when I kissed him tonight.' She rolled on top of him and gave him a deep, inviting kiss. She knew this was right and she would have to tell her husband that it's over.
She rolled off of him and patted him on his chest armor while she stood up. "Ye never will be able to counter dat move now will ye?"
"Not if-n ye keep endin it like dat I won't, but remember. . . Tell yer husband about us, or dat it be over between ye's."
At The Cherub she sat and waited. She was there first for a change. She was too excited to let him know of her plan to make sure the king never rules anything ever again.
He was late. She wasn't surprised. 'I hope he doesn't make a habit of this.' She thought to herself but then, 'What if he was compromised in some way?' that would explain his absence. It's a good thing she didn't order for the both of them she would've looked pretty stupid. The waitress came up to give her another tankard of ale.
"Sorry hun, sometimes deez men just get cold feet. Give him another chance an if he still doesn't show, then dump him an go back te yer husband, no matter how useless he is right now. He will eventually come te an see what a woman he's got, an if not, leave him." With that she walked away.
'Does everyone know who I's am?' She looks around and see's basically the scum of Camfor. The cafe has grown since Keldron took power.
'Maybe he got cold feet cause I's kissed him dis afternoon.' She thought. She was beginning to think it was all her fault that he didn't show up. She finished her tankard of ale and got up. As she was walking home she was surprised by Dargus following and then walking right by her.
"Follow me quickly. I's pretty sure I lost 'em but to be sure meet me at da banks if I loose ye's" He then picked up his pace and headed toward the banks. She tried not to race there but she still found herself having to slow herself.
She got there and found him sitting at the rock that the boys had always used as a table.
"Kiss me baby!" He said. Their lips mashed into one another's and she found herself feelin a bit guilty. As he was close to her he told her what was going on.
"I have a spy from my cell following me and he's close to me tonight, I think I can loose him tomorrow. I don't want you tell me what you have planned until we are in a secure location.
A loud boom was heard again and Darcey knew what it was.
"What was dat?" He asked looking around.
"Dat was a bomb going off at someone's house. We gotsa stop dis mad king afore he kills all of his commoners." She said with sorrow in her eye's.
"Dats okay, we have a good place fer yer family, speaking of wich, have ye told Forge yet?"
"I's didn't get da chance yet, he wasn't home from work. He was unusually late, but he did mention a new friend dat he found at work, hopefully he went out to have a drink wit him, it might brighten him up a bit."
"An what if he becomes da man he was afore?"
"I's can't have a man who hides away at every bad thing dat happens. Ye know. I's been thinkin a lot about dat lately, even afore I's kissed ye."
"Well, it be good ye be thinkin about it because I's don't want ye likein me for lust er passion er somethin like dat. But I's think I's know ye better an dat."
"C'mon, Dargus, yeah ye do know me better an dat. So ye sure we's alone? Can we talk about me plan, then we can talk about where ye be da other day when I was in da courtyard."
"Yeah, about dat, ye shouldn't have been dare Darcey."
"An who woulda let all those people out of da courtyard? Huh?"
"Our main objective was complete, we weren't dare te stop da executions, dat was da diversion. An me fer knowin dat ye an yer family's in danger, keep yer kids home from school an yer husband as well, if-n ye can."
"An what was more important than freein them from execution?"
"The leader of all da cells in da city had been taken prisoner an was bein tortured, we had te free her and a bunch o' other dwarves as well since we be dare."
"Oh." Was all she could say. She couldn't help but think about what would happen or how she would feel if she were the cause of Thrazzulin's capture and torture.
"Well, I's bein glad yer safe an all."
"Me too hun, me too."
"What about me plan te, well, ye know."
"We's be havin te discuss dat at another time when I's know dare's no ears around. Dis place has too many rocks an trees te hide behind, I feel unsafe here."
"But safe enough te tell me all dat stuff." She retorted.
"Aye, but she be safe an yer not. Let's do dis at The Cherub."
"Again, we tried that tonight an it didn't exactly work out, ye might be bein followed every day now."
He leaned in and kissed her once again, this time, slowly, passionately, like he meant it, because he did. He can finally show her now how he truly feels.
"Tomorrow evenin at The Cherub. Same time, but we sit in da back dis time an even if i'm followed, tonight shows dat I'm just havin secret rendezvous wit ye. So it won't be so suspicious."
"Okay then, I will see ye then, can I's tell ye about me plan then?"
"Yes hun, we should be safe at dat point. See ye then, now kiss me one more time."
"Yer likin dat aren't ye?" She asked sarcastically, knowing full well he does. She kissed him passionately one last time and walked away with a beaming smile on her face.