Blood Line - Episode One

  • Episode One - A Sudden Decision

     

    Vikram woke with a jolt from a sleep he’d never meant to have. The fire had burned low. Dozing off again ey Vikram, he thought to himself, I’m the bloody guard I have to stay awake. He took of his deerhide mittens and scooped up a handful of snow to rub in his face. Cold! it instantly chased away the impeding tiredness.


        It was dark in northern High Rock, at least during the winter. Cold winds from the ghost sea bore thick curtains of grey clouds across the sky, making everything seem gloomy and depressing during the daylight hours. He tucked his mittens back on his hands and rubbed them together at the dwindling fire before placing one more log on the glowing embers.  


        Soon after a few young flames licked happily at the wood. Vikram fidgeted with the buckle of his cloak, twisted and turned his body in the snowdrift until it a hollow shaped to his body supported him. Comfortable and content he leaned back and stared into the dark facade of the spruce trees before him.


    Snow fell lazily from the heavy clouds, fat flakes of intricate patterns. Soft and hypnotizing, the snow seemed to muffle everything around Vikram - it put him in a thinking mood and thinking made him tired. Trying his hardest not to fall asleep again he started to sharpen his steel dagger with an iron rod. The scraping sound comforted him; as a sellsword he had sharpened his sword and dagger - well daggers daily, he did wear a lot of them. One can never have too many knives, he thought to himself and chuckled, unless I fall in a river and they weigh me down.


    For a long time he sat there, sharpening his dagger, wrapped in his thick fur cloak. For a long time he didn't take his eyes of his work, simply letting his mind wonder and his hands scrape. It’s about time I leave these guys, he thought, I’ve been with them for a while but I’m better than this. He was better than that. Vikram was one of those sellsword-for-life type of men, he was a good fighter, an even better thinker and master survivor. All his life he had lived by the sword, but even a middle aged sellsword has ambition, and Vikram knew he’d have to do more with his life, sooner rather than later.     


    When he did look up  from his work he was surprised to see a small mound of snow lying in an unnatural curve toward the direction of the wind. At first he thought it was snow. Was that there before? He thought. He ignored it, but Vikram was a man who trusted his senses, and his senses was telling him that something was off. He got up, squinted into the darkness at the silhouette on the snow. What the fuck is that?


    He ran back to the small clearing where his comrades were camped, walked over to one of the guards sitting at the central fire place.


    The guard looked up as he heard Vikram approaching.


    “Hey Vik” He greeted.


    “Evening Tobs” Vikram replied, “I gotta take a shit I’ll be back at my post in a bit”.


    “Right” Tobs nodded, “But find one of those snowberry bushes before you squat, I took at shit earlier and I had to wipe me’ bum with spruce needles. Haven't been able to sit straight all night...”


    Vikram chuckled, “Aye, I’ll find one of those bushes then”.


    He walked back to his post. The mound, silhouette thing whatever it was, was still there. He drew his sword, a long blade of polished steel. With slow measured steps he approached the mound, realizing -as he had already guessed- that it was a body. Or a corpse. Hard to know.


    Vikram could see no breath from the body, but it was laying face down. He brushed it over on it’s side with his foot. It was a man, in his late twenties, dead. However something about the young man made Vikram shiver. He was pale, all dead men are, but this one seemed almost translucent like a corpse of several days.


    “How by the bloody eight did you get here without me seeing a thing” he whispered to himself, mildly perplexed by the conundrum. He took off his glove to make sure the man was dead by feeling for the faint tug of breath. Nothing. Dead as a doornail, he thought.


    Then the dead man opened his eyes and bit with all his might onto Vikrams hand, all the while staring into Vikram’s face.


    “Ouw! Fuck!” Vikram shouted as he punched the pale, dead-not-dead-man in the face with the hilt of his sword. He heard the man's brow crack but the stranger didn't seem to notice, he stood, slowly, that’s when Vikram noticed the crossbow bolt stuck through the man's lower lung.


    “What in the world?”


    The pale man jumped, the speed of the movement so fast that Vikram only just had time to dodge roll ungracefully to the side. He landed face first in the snow and realized too late that he had dropped his sword in the process.  


    Vikram whirled around, but the pale man had already taken his sword and was now standing over him, with it raised, pointing at his throat. How the fuck did he manage that, was all Vikram could think, how the fuck?


    The man pounced. Vikram kicked. He hit the man’s shin and the pale man slipped, Vikram rolled to his left just in time to dodge another thrust of the sword. I don't want to die like this! he screamed within hsi mind.


    The pale man hissed, an inhuman sound that made the hairs on Vikram’s arms rise. He crawled on hands and knees to escape the crazed thing. The hissing man stepped on his cloak. Vikram coughed as the buckle pressed against his throat. He unbuckled it with a swift, practiced snap of his fingers. The cape came loose, Vikram jumped forwards, spun around and stood facing the pale man.


    Vikram was shaking. His hand was throbbing violently and the urge to vomit overpowered him. What the fuck? The situation was turning to shit and he had no idea how or why.


    The pale man launched himself at Vikram. Vikram tried to evade the attack but the nausea was so extreme he was unable to move.


    THWUMP!


    An invisible force shot across the clearing and planted itself solidly in the pale man’s forehead. It was one more of those bolts. The pale man was dead before he hit Vikram, his skull half split across the left side of his face by the force of the impact. They both fell to the snow covered ground with a silent thud.


    A few heartbeats passed and then the dead pale man’s corpse began to disintegrate into ash.


    “What the fuck?” Vikram whispered. Not nearly as stunned and afraid as he should have been. He was used to bad business, too used to it.


    “It was a vampire” A woman’s voice answered from somewhere behind him. He didn't even try to turn.  


    Vikram fought off the nausea to stand. A strong but gentle hand pulled him back. “Here drink this”, the woman’s voice commanded softly as a small flask was stuck into Vikram’s hand.


    He drank it, not asking questions, he was a seasoned vet and knew that questions asked at the wrong times were as likely to get a man killed as stray arrows on a battlefield. But god’s it tasted horrible.


    “Ew! Tastes like a Skeever’s ass!” Vikram exclaimed. However, the effect was immediate and the nausea disappeared within moments.


    “Are you an alchemist or something?” The woman asked.


    Vikram rose to look at her and was surprised to find a young lady with long black hair and big blue eyes staring at him. The thing that caught his eye, however, was not her stunning beauty, but rather the arsenal she worse strapped to her white chainmail and leather armor.


    Vikram noticed he was staring and hurried to reply “No, why do you ask that?”


    “Because that potion was based on charred skeever hide” She shrugged.


    “What?” Vikram yelped. He fell to all fours and started licking the snow “By the divines that’s disgusting woman! Why would you make me drink that?”.


    “That” She pointed at the ashe pile on the snow, “Was a Vampire” she said courtly.


    “You already said that?” Vikram shook his head.


    She rolled her eyes dramatically, “If you get bit by a Vampire you have to drink this potion to cure the disease it plants within your blood, otherwise you will turn into one of them within two or three days depending on your health condition… that's why” she explained as if talking to a child.


    Vikram shrugged, a little amused at the naushelanse in the young woman, and at his own complete lack of fear or anxiety.


    Vikram shook himself. “Alright, I’m sorry. I think we’ve gotten off on the wrong foot here” he said, looking to apologize. The beautiful woman simply strutted past him to pick up her arrow from the pile of ashe.


    “Yawn!” She said, “I really don’t care old man”.


    Vikram grunted “Well, thank you very much anyways… whoever you are, that thing would have killed me for sure”


    “Yes it would” She agreed, then turned to face him “Why are you being kind to me?” She asked, ignoring his underlying question, “I’m behaving like a bitch”


    “Aye, can’t argue with that. But when a man finds himself near death he always gets a little humbled after, that's why it can be healthy every now and then”


    She laughed at that. “Very well old man, I’m Silverfang-Mistblade Bellatrix” She extended her hand “Nice to meet you”.


    Now it was Vikrams turn to laugh “Silverfang-Mistblade, isn’t that a little over the top you think?”


    She smiled “Yes, but that's what I am, I wasnt the one who gave i that name...”


    “And what is ‘it’ then? If i may be so bold as to ask?”


    “You may” she crossed her arms, Vikram couldn't help but notice how her breasts rose from that stance to assault his eyes with their ‘deadly’ curves. He forced himself, with much pain, to look away. “I am a Vampire hunter, of the Silverfang order. I am trained as a Mistblade: hence a Silverfang Mistblade-” she began.


    “And let me guess” Vikram interrupted “your name is Bellatrix?”


    “Yes”.


    “Well then, nice to meet you Bell” He shook her hand.  


    “It’s Bellatrix, thank you very much”


    “No way I’m calling you that”  


    “You make it sound as if you’ll be calling me this often?” She raised her eyebrow.


    “I will” Vikram couldn't help but smile like a big child “You see, you are gonna take me with you”


    She giggled, a sweet sound “Damn but you made your mind up fast about that. You hurt your head or something?”


    “The condition of my head has been questionable for a long time” he answered “But I almost died and the only thought going through my mind was ‘what the fuck’ and ‘why am I here’”  


    “You are not coming with me”


    “Yes” time to bullshit “You see, when you save a man’s life he owes you this favor in return”


    “No”


    “Yes”


    “Fuck off”


    “I won’t”

     

     

     

    *Blood Line Episodes*

Comments

2 Comments   |   Paws likes this.
  • BlueDremora
    BlueDremora   ·  September 14
    Some giant's toe, some falmer ear, some random mushrooms i collected in
    the forest (hm, must be safe), some dust from a dead vampire, some
    bonemeal from a human skeleton that almost killed me... sounds tasty to
    me xD
  • Paws
    Paws   ·  September 14
    "Tastes like a skeever's ass." Haaah! I bet most potions do, the stuff that goes into them is just foul.