Jaeger: Chapter Sixteen; Farewell

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    Strong as the Bear
    Swift as the Stag
    Silent as the Wolf
    True as the Eagle
    Such is the way of a Jaeger

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    - A Day Later, Back in Solitude -
    Wulf, furious at the Thalmor and the Imperials, is searching for Aldis. Aela has Paws for the day. 

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    I stamped through the courtyard, his feet echoing as they slammed into the beautifully cobbled ground. My eyes searched madly, looking for the dark hair that fell onto an armored body that would indicate Captain Aldis, commander of the Solitude Guard. My eyes locked harshly onto two men. One wore the familiar armor of the Guard - an armor I had discarded on his way back from the Thalmor camp, switching them out for a set of simple leather armor that I had bought from a Khajiiti caravan outside of Solitude - as well as a man with long, dark black hair. Aldis. I prowled over, my mind working at insane speeds, thinking of what to say now I had found the man. 'You.' I growled, my face contorting into a mask of hate. Aldis turned around, a happy grin on his face.
    'Hello, friend!' His face changed when he saw my expression, and I saw a flicker in his eyes, that reminded me of something primal. Something scared, like the deer I used to chase through the wild woods above us. 'You said. You said it would be a good thing.' I hissed the last few words. Aldis expressed shock. 'What are you talking about, Wulf? You should be proud!' I spat at Aldis' feet, and his expression - once more - changed to slight anger. 'Thats enough, Wulf. Explain this behaviour now, or I'll have you dragged away.' I reined my anger in. 'The Thalmor - they slaughtered a group of innocent Talos Monks in the mountains. Their bodies lie dead in the cold now, all because they chose to worship the wrong God!' I was shouting now, and I made no attempt to control it. Aldis simply frowned, scowling. 'Talos isn't a God, Wulf. The Thalmor are the saviours of The Empire. You swore an oath! You serve the Empire - you serve the Thalmor!' I spat once, and then shook my head. 'Not anymore, I don't. I'm done. Done with the Empire, done with the Guard, done with the Thalmor. I won't stand by to see innocent's massacred, Aldis. Tell Tullius I'm done.' I drew my sword, and threw it to the ground. Aldis simply smiled sadly. 'Farewell, then. I will make sure to notify Tullius. But, Wulf? Where shall I find you if ever I need you again?' I considered my options, before resting on one. 'I doubt you'll need me again, Aldis, and if you do, I won't answer. But if you still feel the need to call, you may find me at Windhelm.' And with that, I left the Solitude Guard behind, writing a new page in the unfolding story that was my life. 

     

     

    Aela sat on the bench outside of her little cabin, deep in discussion with Fenrir about something. I sat down, interrupting their discussion. Aela seemed slightly annoyed for my interruption, but the two of them noticed my scowling face and piped up. 'Explain, Wulf.' Aela smiled curiously, and Fenrir simply raised his heavily furred eyebrows. I confessed, explaining the entire incident with the Thalmor and my resignation from the Solitude Guard to the two of them. Aela simply rolled her eyes, and Fenrir didn't show any emotion. 'Surely, Wulf, you realised this would happen? I count you as a trusted friend, but even I know that the Empire are nothing but simple puppets of the Thalmor.' To this, Fenrir smirked smugly. 'Never a truer word has come out of her mouth.' He grinned. Aela shrugged, and I simply sat their staring at the stone-walled citadel that had been my home for the past two or three months. It was time to move on, I thought. 'Well, true enough. But I haven't told you the full extent of my plan, exactly.' Aela expected this, and nodded. Fenrir continued grinning, which seemed odd. 'I don't plan to leave without Tovasi. You heard what he said - he wishes to be a part of this - whatever this is, so we'll have to fetch him and see if he's willing to come.' Aela motioned for me to continue, waving her hand. 'I'm joining the Stormcloaks. You with me?' 

     

     

    Tovasi sat on a small wooden bench in the market - thankfully. I had vowed not to enter the Training Court once more - I walked over to him, before sitting down next to him. I was pleasantly surprised at how comfortable the bench was. I spoke up, my voice harsh from my earlier yelling. 'Hey, Tovasi. By now, Aldis has probably told you, hasn't he?' Tovasi nodded sadly. 'You don't have to leave, you know.' I shook my head. That much I was sure of - leaving was what I was meant to do. 'You'll come with me, won't you?' I hadn't meant to mention it that quickly, nor that bluntly, but it slipped out. Tovasi nodded instantaneously. 'To the ends of the earth, if you will it.' I grinned happily. At least I wouldn't be losing my greatest friend when I left the Guard. I thanked Tovasi for accepting, and was amazed at how quickly he had agreed - I had expected it to take far longer, but the best thing about Tovasi? There was no one I'd rather have at my side. I was grateful for his company as we walked back to the little cabin that had become the meeting place for our small group of four. 

     

     

    We sat, two on each side of the wooden table that we used as a mix of a picnic-table and a relaxing place to discuss things. Aela sat beside me, and Tovasi and Fenrir sat opposite us. Fenrir had cooked a delicious batch of sweetrolls - something I'd never imagine he could do - that he explained was his mother's recipe. As I swallowed another delicious doughy bun, I realised something. 'Aela, where's Paws? You said you were training him!' Aela grinned. She whistled loudly, and the wolfhound walked out of her cottage. His fur was combed, and he came over. Can I switch owners? She's way better than you are. Sorry. I laughed out loud, something I hadn't done all day. 'Well, no. You're mine, like it or not. You only like her 'cause she feeds you to much.' His round belly was a testament to my statement, and Aela grinned sheepishly. 'Guilty as charged.' I ruffled the fur on Paws neck. Whence I was done, I spoke loud enough for everyone to hear me. 'Okay, it's down to business time.' The other three focused, staring intentedly at me. 'My plan is to make our leave tonight, and head for Windhelm, Capital of Eastmarch and Head of the Stormcloak Rebellion. I wish to join them, as well as prepare for this mysterious "War" that Aela and Fenrir keep on mentioning. Perhaps, I could recieve some training to help me control my Beast, if Aela or Fenrir are willing?' they both nodded, 'None of you have to journey with me, but it would be the greatest of honors to travel with you. What say you?' Aela was the first to perk up, answering. 'My bow is yours, Wolfblood.' Tovasi answered next. 'I'm with you, Wulf.' Finally, after a while, Fenrir spoke. 'You have my sword, Champion of Hircine. I smiled, warmth filling me. 'Thank you, all. Now that our decision is made up, let us make haste to Windhelm, lest night slow us!' 

     

     

    The five of us - Me, Tovasi, Aela, Fenrir, and of course, Paws - trudged down the cobbled path that led out of Solitude. We each carried a pigskin pack filled with supplies and weaponry, and we all had weapons slung at our belts - all except Tovasi, of course, who simply set his hands alight whenever a threat approached. Paws barked repeatedly, despite my repeated attempts to quiet him, and after a slow walk down the path that led to the forested swamps of Haafingar. We approached the heavyset wooden gateway that led out into the wilds. Two guards stood on duty, both wearing fully-closed helmets with iron-tipped spears set across their back. Another guard sat atop the gate, on a wooden-woven chair. He was reading a book. I nodded to Aela. 'Let me handle this one.' She nodded, happy to let me deal with it. I strode over, and suddenly shock clawed at my heart as I saw the face of the closest guard as he took his helmet off. 

     

     

    Jorge smiled sadly at me. His helmet hung in his hand, and his sword was brandished in the other. His blonde hair was short cut, and his mustachioed beard was shaven off, and he looked like a different man. His eyes flickered coldly. 'Who goes there?' He asked, even though he knew my name. I decided to play his little game. 'My name is Wulf-Blöd.' Then, as an afterthought, I added, 'Champion of Hircine.' This shocked and aggravated Jorge, who wasn't happy with the state of my Lycanthropy. 'What business have you leaving the City, Wulf-Blöd, Champion of Hircine?' I grimaced sadly. Jorge had been my closest friend up until Aela had explained everything. Jorge, simply not able to comprehend it, broke under the pressure. I hadn't seen him since. Jorge seemed to collapse mentally. His face softened, and he moved closer to me. At first, I was alerted, but he dropped his iron blade to the ground. It clattered for a moment, then lay still. He moved in, and instinctively, he embraced me. I held him back, and then we released. I thanked him for his kindness to me, and bid him farewell. He continued smiling that same, sad smile as he opened the gate to let us pass through. I walked through, followed by my pack of Companions. Paws sniffled as he walked past Jorge, who reached down and ruffled the wolfhound's furred neck. As the heavyset iron-barred wooden gates closed, I looked back at Solitude as the sun fell across the sky. 

    'Farewell, City of Stone.' As I turned and walked away, I did my best to ignore the tears that streamed down my face.

     

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    Your's truly, Wulf

     

     

     

     

     

Comments

1 Comment   |   Paws and 1 other like this.
  • Paws
    Paws   ·  August 7
    A moving farewell, too much feels dude!