Protected, no longer; Chapter 11


    Chapter 11


    His mother Mirane was at the door to speak with the town Magister. He wasn’t pleased about the fact Maltrys hadn’t been around when the town council took place. They missed his valuable input, he said. Mirane was concerned as she said her husband had behaved strangely lately.


    Ciel’nn was sitting on the couch and he listened to the conversation while he held a teacup in his hand. Maltrys was stranger than they knew, he thought. He glanced at the Magister when he mentioned a baby from a neighbor went missing last week and nobody knew who took it. Ciel’nn had his doubts but he was afraid to say anything. He was afraid of Maltrys and what he would do.



    The Valtheim Towers area seemed to be unoccupied when they approached them. Ciel’nn decided to pick some flowers for potions as they would be handy during their travels. He picked blue and red mountain flowers as the young warrior kept an eye on the road. I need some river Betties and nightshades, too. Maybe if we find a place to rest I’ll able to mix some. He stood up, looking around for more flowers.


    The young warrior had found him at the Silent Moon’s camp the previous night, fighting bandits. Once they were dealt with, Rangalen had taken him away from the camp to make their own camp near the trees. He had slept rather restlessly regardless that the young warrior was next to him. Could it be Danica’s reaction had provoked something? Ciel’nn couldn’t say. He was still rather upset about the whole Temple visit.


    The young warrior was pleased as the towers were empty. The bridge was dreadful to fight at, but he was more concerned for the Dunmer. Rangalen observed the area while his friend was gathering flowers - Ciel’nn seemed to pick the fragile flowers ever so gently. He turned his gaze on the road ahead and eyed the bushes and trees – nothing that showed signs of danger jumped out at him. Hopefully they would have a peaceful day.


    Although, Rangalen frowned at the thought of the brutes. He hoped Sarade was alright and out of their reach even if he was certain she could handle herself well in combat. Still, the news of them and the Dunmer’s last’s night restless sleep were deeply troubling indeed, and Rangalen felt lost. He’d still keep close eye on his friend.


    “We forgot to ask about the puzzle warning.” Rangalen said as the Dunmer walked towards him with plenty of flowers in his alchemist bag, but he got a hurtful glance from Ciel’nn. The young warrior sighed. “I’m sorry I convinced you over to go over there, but I wanted to help.” he said in a sincere tone. “I’m worried.”


    Ciel’nn stopped, and stared at the Nord with his observing eyes. “I know you’re trying to help, but,” he shook his head. “It’s not like a curable disease. I don’t know…” he said quietly. What should I say? I see nightmares about the s’wit? Maybe there was something else lurking, too. He wasn’t sure if he wanted to know. Tainted… Ciel’nn wasn’t sure about that either.


    “I don’t want you to suffer because of the nightmares, Ciel’nn. Just let me know if you know any way I can help you.” Rangalen sighed as he put his hand on the Dunmer’s shoulder.


    Frowning for a moment, Ciel’nn glanced at the young warrior. You already help me by letting me sleep close to you. He nodded and turned his eyes on the road. “We should keep going.” He whispered before he started to walk away.


    Feeling heavily guilt for the Dunmer’s gloomy mood, Rangalen decided he wouldn’t push Ciel’nn to do anything he didn’t want to do. He followed the Dunmer quietly and kept his eyes on their surroundings as they started to descend down the path.


    The young warrior pondered if he really should go and see his father. They didn’t get along well since Rangalen had left home. He still had the note of Imperial movements that Ciel’nn had gathered at Morthal. Still, he wasn’t sure his father would gave listened to him. Maybe I should give the note to Jarl Ulfric instead.


    Ciel’nn was losing himself in his thoughts when he heard talking from the bridge ahead. He stopped, and waited for the Nord. Once the young warrior was close enough, he whispered. “The brutes are here. What do we do?” he nodded towards the bridge. It looked like the rough warriors were talking with each other.


    Rangalen frowned. This could turn ugly quickly. He didn’t know them, and hadn’t seen them before other than at Whiterun. He knew Ciel’nn didn’t want to get into a fight with them, so he hoped they would listen to him. “Walk casually.” the young warrior said in a low tone.


    “What are you doing?” Ciel’nn hissed as he tried to walk as normally as possible. He had no idea what Rangalen was up to. Hopefully he wouldn’t do anything that could get them into trouble. His hand went to the hilt of his dagger by instinct. He’d kept an eye on those brutes. They looked like they were ten times rougher warriors than the young warrior, and one of them had a crude looking battle axe. Ciel’nn hated those!


    The Nord warriors turned to the pair of friends when they came closer. Gaoru, with blonde hair and a weathered face narrowed his green eyes at the young warrior, but he didn’t say anything yet. His friend, Tellik with black hair and red face pain and tattoos on his arms, along with his crude battle axe, grunted. He had his eyes fixed on the Dunmer, with a wicked interest.


    “You two!” Tellik said roughly to make them stop. “Have you seen the so-called Dragonborn? A female Nord with black hair?” he questioned.


    “No, we haven’t.” Rangalen replied, keeping his voice cool. Maybe they could reason with the blond Nord, but this one seemed to be something more. The gaze of Tellik bothered him in ways he’d feel were disgusting.


    “Do you know where we could find her?” Tellik asked while his whole being shifted into a more menancing look.


    “No, what do you want with her anyway?” Rangalen asked in his turn. He started to hope they’d get out of this situation.


    “So you know her after all.” The crude warrior mused. “We just want to talk with her, but that’s not your concern, is it?” He turned his head to the Dunmer, with his gleam eyes. He could see the Dunmer was in discomfort. It gave Tellik a pleasure. If only he could get the elf…


    “I doubt that, but we’re leaving now.” the young warrior said and attempted to go over the bridge. He knew Ciel’nn would follow him. Gaoru moved to block his way, hand on the hilt of his sword.


    “You’ll get to pass us if you leave your elf with us.” Tellik snarled as he took a step towards the Dunmer.


    Grabbing his dagger, Ciel’nn hissed. “I’d rather see you dead!” He wanted to glance at Rangalen, but he had to keep his eyes on the brute who wanted him for Gods knows why. It was beyond him, and the Dunmer wasn’t going to let that brute touch him.


    “Not going to happen!” the young warrior snapped and he reached for his sword. He couldn’t bear any thought of Ciel’nn getting hurt, and whatever Tellik was about to do to him – no, he must stop it happening. First he needed to get free of the blonde warrior, and that could be difficult.


    “How cute.” Tellik grinned. “I’m going to have fun with your elf.” He grabbed his war axe and took a big step towards the Dunmer. “Gaoru, keep the youngling busy.”


    “Aye, Tellik.” Gaoru smiled at the young Nord. “Don’t try anything stupid, lad, and this will go fine.” He grabbed his sword, and taunted Rangalen into a fight.


    The big brute came closer, and Ciel’nn had to think ahead to avoid the war axe strikes. He hadn’t time to poison his dagger, so he was in a defensive stance. The looks Tellik shot at him made Ciel’nn feel disgusted. The whole situation made him think of escape, but he couldn’t leave the Nord alone with them. Damn them!


    Tellik didn’t try to hurt the elf, but just tried keep him on edge. He liked to watch how the mer danced, avoiding his strikes. That slender body must be fit and agile – the brutish warrior wanted to have it for himself. For some reason, he’d taken a liking for the elves. Not that they didn’t live long in his care. That couldn’t be helped, he guessed.


    After a desperate struggle, Rangalen had gotten cuts on his arm and was losing his balance. “Run if you get a chance!” he shouted, hoping Ciel’nn would hear him. Someone must get help since they couldn’t get rid of them. All the things Sinmir had taught him were used in this fight, and it wasn’t enough – Rangalen felt he was at his limit.


    Then he felt a hard hit, and his view blacked out. The young warrior collapsed on the ground.


    “I got him, Tellik!” Gaoru cheered, and turned to watch his friend still battling with the elf. A grin came on his lips – of course, Tellik was only playing around. It was only matter of time now.


    Hearing a cheerful tone from the other brute, Ciel’nn saw Tellik lowering his guard for a brief moment. His sword went up in a flourish and it slashed the brute’s face, badly wounding the right eye severely. Having his eyes on Gaoru next, he dodged raging Tellik and leaped towards the blonde Nord. I’ll be back, Rangalen. He had his spare dagger ready…


    Gaoru was stunned to see his friend wounded for the too long a time. He was preparing to face the elf, but hadn’t time and he gasped as he felt a dagger in his chest – the heart! In a split second he saw his life before his eyes. Why did he not have better armor? Damn Tellik… The Nord warrior fell on the ground.


    Running for his life, Ciel’nn saw a Stormcloak patrol coming his way and decided to seek for their help. Hopefully they would listen to him.


    “Stormcloaks!” He shouted going forward, even the four soldiers seemed to be on alert. “Captain Mistgaze’s son needs your help at the bridge!” He hoped the Nord’s last name would not matter for Stormcloaks as he didn’t know if Rangalen’s father was an important man or not.


    “Captain’s son?” one of the soldiers grunted. “Damn, we better help him!” as he gestured to his fellow soldiers to follow him. “You wait here, dark elf.”


    Ciel’nn caught the disgusted look from one of the soldiers, but wasn’t bothered. He watched them hurrying to the bridge. I hope he’s alright. Waiting not so patiently, Ciel’nn noticed he had a cut on his arm and it bled. That N’wah! He reached in his bag for something to help.


    A groan escaped from the young warrior when he came around. His body ached and his head felt battered. He tried to move, but that hurt too.


    “Shh, stay still.” Ciel’nn’s voice came from close by. “You’re injured. You need to rest.”


    “What about…?” Rangalen turned his head to see Ciel’nn sitting next to him. At least he’s well. He hadn’t seen the hard blow that Gaoru gave him. “I’m glad you’re safe.”


    “Gaoru is dead, and Tellik lost his other eye, probably. He also killed three Stormcloaks while they tried to get out of there.” the Dunmer replied with a soft smile. “Did you know they were outlaws?” he asked as he studied the Nord’s bandages gently.


    “They were? Where are we?” The young warrior’s eyes widened. They were inside a house, but he didn’t recognize it. They were somewhere safe, that much Rangalen knew and he relaxed some more.


    “I heard they are Stormcloak deserters and outlawed by Ulfric for some reason.” he replied as he gazed into Rangalen’s eyes. “We’re at Darkwater Crossing. We won’t move until you’re healed. So rest up.” Ciel’nn’s voice turned into a whisper.


    He watched as the Nord fell asleep after some warm soup and Ciel’nn sighed softly. Shaking his head lightly, his thoughts returned to the brute warrior, Tellik. He must be furious by now as he had a wounded eye and it would probably go blind soon enough. He needed to know more about Tellik, and even more, how to assassinate him.


    He’ll be back, I’m certain of it.



    Back to ToC


4 Comments   |   GailOlm and 5 others like this.
  • Paws
    Paws   ·  February 11
    Woah, there's some subtext going on in that scene with Ciel'nn and Tellik! Very messed, and brave! I also enjoyed the flower-picking at the start. There's a mod I like, Nordic Cooking, and the mountain flowers are used to make Nordic tea. I doubt that's a...  more
  • A Shadow Under the Moons
    A Shadow Under the Moons   ·  November 17, 2017
    Oohhh. Outlaws. Not Miraak cultists, then? Blast, here I thought this was tying into the Dragonborn questline. e_e
  • Karver the Lorc
    Karver the Lorc   ·  July 20, 2017
    Nasty buggers. That Tellik is certainly one twisted person. This chapter had a very dark and grim vibe to it and I have to say I really like it. Good job.
    • Caladran
      Karver the Lorc
      Karver the Lorc
      Karver the Lorc
      Nasty buggers. That Tellik is certainly one twisted person. This chapter had a very dark and grim vibe to it and I have to say I really like it. Good job.
        ·  July 23, 2017
      Dark and grim is what I was looking for. :)  I think it's going to be a theme whenever Tellik is around.