C.O.T.W Chapter 6 Elder The Slavemaster Cometh

  • Hasir narrowed his eyes threateningly at Nerethi and asked him to call his guards off because the slaves weren't doing anything

    harmful. Nerethi looked at him menacingly and, sneering at him, told the Argonian if he did Nerethi and his guards would be upon

    him like vampires on sacks of blood which was in fact the case. 


    Hasir's face hardened at he thought on this rather disturbing image,

    "What?" he spluttered, "Are all slave drivers vampires?" Nerethi glowered at this. Hasir grimaced as if Nerethi had dealt him an

    emotional blow, "I'm sorry, I meant, uh are all dunmer vampires. I didn't mean..." Nerethi seemed to take offense toward Hasir's

    brash generalization, "How dare you make such an unruly generalization, lizard." 


    His face sonftened a bit and his eyes fell to the ground,

    "No, all dunmer are not vampires. This curse is only reserved for the kin of Drevas Hlaalu." 


    Hasir's brow furrowed as if this caused his brain to shrivel like a raisin,

    "I-I'm sorry, Reserved for... whom exactly?" He asked, not having heard the name before


    Nerethi looked taken aback. He had a hard time registering the  

    "You haven't heard of Dreva Hlaalu? the werewolf cursed to live forever as a member of the undead. You haven't heard of him? By

    the gods, were you born a mindless mudcrab, I thought everyone knew about the tale of Drevas." He looked at the blank expression

    on the Argonian's face. 


    Nerethi sighed and threw up his hands,

    "Must I recount the tale? Very well, we dunmer were not always dark skinned, we were once golden skinned like that of our High

    elven cousin. One of our Anceesotr Drevas Hlaalu was the first werewolf and did something that Hircine despised above all else:

    marry a non-lycanthropic Argonian.


    He sighed mournfully,

    "As I am sure you are aware, or judging by your vacant expression, maybe not. The wolflord does not take kindly to mixed

    marriages If it were a werewolf and werewolf that would have been fine but a human and werewolf? That is a daedric red flag if I

    ever saw one. Hircine set his wolves on the little town in the Isles. He dragged the sullen golden skinned ancestor of the dunmer

    back to his realm and had Drevas' wife killed to serve an example to anyone who decided to betray the wolflord's wishes. The

    dunmer was," Nerethi went on, "sentenced to death by being hunted down like a dog."


    Hasir screwed his face up even more,

    "Wait... so you are saying a werewolf killed one of his own?" 


    Nerethi smiled broade and roared with laughter,

    "yes, Hircine must've ate his own hide when he saw that the dunmeri ancestor conjured a portal to escape from his realm. After this

    narrow escape, Hircine conjured another portal and Molag Bal stepped into his realm."


    Hasir looked at him, eyes wide in astonishment,

    "Molag Bal? Why would he be in dealings with Hircine, whom he strongly dislikes?"


    Nerethi shook his head bemusedly at this apparent lack of daedric knowledge,

    "You insolent lizard, you fail to realize that both Hircine and Molag Bal, while enemies, are still brothers and when one is in danger or

    in need of something the other one will quickly be at their side." 


    Hasir growled and threw himself at Nerethi who dodged out of the way and unsheathed his silver dagger, glared at Hasir and slashed

    in the direction of the Argonian. Hasir bent over backwards, narrowly avoiding a lethal blow from the dagger. The Argonian dropped

    down and whipped his tail around in a circle knocking the dunmer on his backside like someone who was not very good at jump

    rope, or in this case, Argonian tail jumping, and heard the tell tale sign of silver clattering on wood.


    He glared down at the fallen dunmer who was attempting to right himself again,

    "I will never believe that Molag Bal and Hircine will ever work together, HSSS!" He said, glaring hotly at the dunmer


    The dunmer got up and advanced like an angry wolf on its prey,

    "Get over yourself lizard, our ancestor who ran afoul of Hircine worked with Molag Bal to punish him, yes, not all dumner are

    vampires; just the direct descendants of our cursed Altmer ancestor, so most likely everyone on this ship are vampires as we are the

    sole surviving descendants of that same ancestor. Molag Bal not only did that but he also made us have an insatiable hunger that

    cannot be quenched; can you imagine being so hungry and knowing that you cannot sate that hunger forever as you know it will

    return?" He asked Argonian in front of him, flecks of foam forming at the sides of his mouth


    Hasir started to nod but thought better of it and shook his head as though he was getting rid of a rather persistent fly,

    "Yea-no, What does this have to do with the Caldera Mines?" He asked as he stared into Nerethi's soul. "Er, what is your plan when

    we get there exactly?" He asked


    Nerethi looked enraged at this and poked him in the sack that served as his shirt,

    "Who the fuck told you about that?" He asked, eyes positively popping out of his head. "You were not to know of this until we got to

    our destination."


    Hasir shrugged and said that it just slipped out; he did not even know where he heard it from. He asked Nerethi what his plan was

    when he forced the slaves, including himself, to do meniable hard labor. Nerethi roared with laughter at the Argonian's sheer

    stupidity and told the Argonian that his plan is to have Molag Bal help them get payback for our ancestor's mistake; the mistake that

    caused him and in extension,, us, turn into hideous creatures that can't even go out into the sunlight."


    Hasir groaned audibly at this and ran his hand down his face,

    "This happened to your ancestor; not you, can't you just forget it?" He asked, bewildered


    Nerethi shook his head and said that he will not forget about it and as punishment, he will rob the Argonians, whom a member of

    one of their tribes married their doomed ancestor, of that which they cherish above all else; nature, he would find a way to dry up

    nature as well as the hist trees so that the Argonians would die out. Hasir looked at the dumner as if to say he was very sorry if him

    people somehow cause him greif and asked the dunmer with his eyes if there was a way to fix this.


    Nerethi shook his head abruptly at this attempt at concilement,

    "Your people are the reason that this curse was placed upon us in the first place" He spat, "if it wasn't for you Argonians, my

    ancestors wouldn't be cursed with ill gotten long life." He picked up the dagger and advanced on Hasir Again, "It's because of you

    Saxhleel that people like me cannot walk in the sunlight, because of you I, along with my brothers and sisters, have to sleep during

    the day lest we want to burn to a crisp. It's because of your people, I must do the disgusting act of sucking blood instead of eating

    like a normal dunmer" He spat at Hasir, eyes glowing like the fires of Oblivion.


    Hasir felt the dagger press into his neck, it felt like a white hot poker against his warm scales. Hasir's eyes filled with tears begging

    him to stop but Nerethi was so far gone that he did not hear Hasir's pleas. He was so filled with rage at a feud that, in Hasir's view,

    was so stupid that he pleaded with the dunmer to see reason bbut he just glared at Hasir menacingly and continued pushing the

    silver dagger in unaware of how much pain it was causing Hasir or even how it woulld impede his healing ability. 


    Instinctively, the Argonian reached up with his right hand; which was hard because of the immense pain he was in. He back-handed

    the dunmer, Hasir hissed softly as the dunmer reached up to rub the spot where the Argonian had slapped him,

    "Ahhh, thatss better, look over there, a slave is escaping." He gestured to a point far into the distance off the starboard side of the

    sihip, knocked the dagger away with his other hand and dashed to the port side of the ship where the guards had bound the other

    slaves to try and quell a miniature slave revolt that was in progress. Hasir positioned his claws against the binds of the first bound

    Argonian and delivered a quick downward slash and the ropes fell away causing Juleen to grimace in pain, massaging his hands

    where the ropes had cut into them. 


    Juleen thanked him and, on Hasir's instruction, he cut the bonds of Hasir's uncle while Hasir did the same with Khash's bonds. Hasir

    told them all about Nerethi's plan to get revenge on the Argonians because one of their ancestors married a lycanthrope and that

    Hircine generally frowns upon a lycanthrope marrying a non-lycanthrope. Drujeeta, Juleen and Khash shared Hasir's confused

    expression when he first heard about this. 


    Hasir yelled for them to get into the water in order of them to swim to safety to avoid slavery or even execution,

    "Quickly, get into the water. When you gget the chance swim for the mainland and head north, settle in one of the ashlander camps."

    They looked at him, worried expressions on their faces. Khash turned to him and asked what he was going to do. Hasir said he would

    be joining them after he thought up a plan to sto Nerethi from carrying out his plan. He cast a quick glance at Nerethi who was

    joined by his four dunmer henchmen. Hasir hiissed in anger and told his cohorts to jump for the water. They were all confident in

    their abilites, everyone except Khash.


    Hasir silently came up behind her, tail trailing behind him, and asked her why she was hesitant to jummp. She sighed and told his

    that she was not sure that she even knew how to bbe an Argonian anymore. Hasir put his hands on his hips and glared menacingly

    at the small Argonian,

    "What is that supposed to mean?" he asked her, a trifle scathingly


    She looked like a young lizard who got caught with her claw stuck in a jar full of bugs,

    "Nothing, I, er, well, I am not sure I do not know whether I know how to swim anymore." 


    Hasir shook his head amusedly, patting her on the shoudler,

    "Don't worry Khash, just jump and your instincts should take over." He lowered his voice so he could not hear him, "If you have any

    instincts, that is." He smiled broadly at her, "You'll be fine, trust me." 


    Khash took a deep breath, gulped loudly and dove off the ship. She flew through the air with an impressive swan dive despite her

    unfounded fears that she was more orc than Argonian ever since Marlock 'adopted' her. To her surprise, however, she hit the water

    and the old instincts switched on like a light in a dark room.


    She resurfaced to see Hasir surface not too far away from her clapping and grinning widely,

    "See, I knew you could do it." He said swimming over to her to punch her playfully in the shoulder. He looked up at the deck of the

    ship and saw the dunmer fling ropes over the ship's edge near the Argonians and proceeded to rappel down the side of the ship.

    Hasir saw this and swore loud enough for the rest of his group to hear. Drujeeta call from were he floated in the water what was

    wrong; Hasir shouted back that the guards were in hot pursuit and he instructed for the Arrgonians to scatter, that way what would

    have been an easy capture would be made that much more difficult. Above where he floated he could hear Nerethi barking orders to

    his soldiers.


    The head dunmer dove into the water, resurfaced and yelled at his guards which were clinging to the ropes as if they were lifevests,

    to stop being spineless cowards and jump. They did as he requested; Nerethi told them to split up and that he will pursue the slave

    leader and that they should capture the others. The guards saluted and were off. Nerethi turned his attention to the Argonian leader

    and sam after him.


    Drujeeta, Juleen and Khash knew someone was following them so they sped up. Within half an hour, the dunmer caught up to

    themtie a rope around their hands and hauled them back to the ship. Nerethi smirked evilly as he swam full pelt toward Hasir who

    was doing his best to evade him. It was no good, Hasir knew because he could hear his heavy hands paddling fast toward him.

    Nerethi took out a net from where though Hasir hadn't the foggiest. Hasir just had time to gasp and cower when a chitin woven net

    enveloped him, making him struggle like a shark struggling to get free of some sort of trap.


    Nerethi unsheathed his silver dagger from his belt,

    "This oughta slow him down." He said as he threw the silver dagger, it flew in an arc, metal reflected in the moonlight, and caught

    Hasir just above the ankle. The Argonian yelped in pain. Nerethi grinned triumphantly and hauled his scaly package back to the ship,

    climbed the outer ledges of the ship along with his comrades who had one writhing green lizard each and continued to climb until

    they reached the top deck.