Ruinknight

2 A cruel world

Somewhere within a forest clearing 2 AM

”My god ”

A hunter cloaked in crimson utters as he and his companions witness a grizzly sight before them

they we
e tasked with finding the hunting part that had disappeared after making contact with their target, and now they found them, or at least what left of them

Before the hunters were the corpses of their comrades, their bodies mutilated, chest ripped open, heads crushed and limbs bent in horrible angles, the red ichor of the dead had mixed in with the sodden earth Where gore and viscera shimmered under their lanterns light, they where not prepared to gaze upon such a scene but they had to, they needed to, they must know the fate that had befallen to those who where tasked to hunt Him.

one of the hunters approach, careful not to step on any scattered body parts as he inspects the carcasses,

The young hunter spoke, ”W-What the **?? ” His voice trembles as he holds the urge to retch, This is far worse than what he anticipated, ”Even those things are incapable of doing… This! ” He continues almost going hysterical

Another hunter moves forward, ”H-How the ** did he do this?! ” , she has seen a lot more than the young hunter beside her but even she was not prepared for this

They continued to gawk at the ghastly scene until their leader approaches them ”We must report this Now! ” his commanding voice grabs the attention of his two companions, ” we must go… they need to know this.. they need to know what happened here ”

”W-What about the bodies? ” The young hunter foolishly ask,

The commanding hunter stops, He turns his head to look down sorrowfully on the once proud hunters now reduced to pieces ”We can recover them… ”

”W-We can just leave them here like this! ” The young hunter protest,

The lead hunter looks at him in annoyance ” If you wish to wallow in the entrails of your comrades then go ahead ” he spouts at the young hunter ”i will not waste any more time here any longer.. we must go ”

the young hunter dares not to protest further and chooses to follow the order he was given ,in silence he grips the reins of his horse as they prepare for departure, ”they don want to remain here any longer either way ”, he thinks to himself

As their steed wades through the bloodied mud the lead hunters thoughts are clouded by fear and panic as the sense of overwhelming dread falls down upon him like a hammer upon a nail ”This is bad.. this is really bad ”

Somewhere in a tavern in a frontier town

The atmosphere of the tavern is noisy as it should be, different people from different walks of life converge to socialize, trade or just quench their thirst with a fine ale, this tavern in particular attracts plenty of travelers

Avery, a red haired young woman decked out in Apparel suited for traveling entered the tavern to grab a quick drink, she had journeyed from her home down south to go to the cities up north and although the distance she had walked through wasn that far, her legs where numb as she is not accustomed traveling on foot at such lengthy distance,

The barman notices her and approaches, ”seems youve come along way here traveler, what can I get you? ” he says as she sits down

”just some water ” relaxing her weary arm on the counter,

as the barman gives her the drink he ask ”So… What brings you to town? ” she finishes her cool water and puts the glass down to responds to his question

” Just taking a quick rest, Im heading up north to crown harbor ” the barman raised an eyebrow ” heading up north ey,?, alot of folkes have started moving from the south these days, roads been getting pretty dangerous too with all those bandits and criminals scum mucking about causing trouble for Honest travelers, ”

despite the evident dangers the barman presents to her, Avery still seems confident ”Well I can take care of myself pretty well ”

the bartender looks at her with a worried expression ”not to doubt you lass but… I think its probably a good idea to bring some company along, yknow just Incase ”

she wanted to retort but she knew he was right, ever since the war against the Aeurunites began alot of the local guard forces stationed in the frontiers have been reassagined north to guard more important locations like the capital leaving behind inexperienced militia groups only capable of dealing with small gangs of bandits

”Hmph Well I dont have enough money to get myself ride on a ship let alone hire a mercenary ”

The barman looks at her with worried eyes and sighs,

”Perhaps you should join someone then ”

Avery looks at him with suprise and confusion,

”See that fella over there ” he points to a peculiar man clad in a tattered dark cloaked, his face was hidden by a cowl

”hes been here all night, I even went up to him and ask if would like a drink or something but he instead requested for a map leading north ”

Avery looks at the man, then back at the barman, ”I don know, He doesn look…safe ”

”Well looks can be deceiving ” the barman says letting out a small chuckle, ”but either way if you help guide him north he might let you join on his travels, if not you go back home ”

The barman leaves Avery to think about her next decision as he attends to another customer

Avery contemplates to herself ”She cant give up now, she needs to go north, but… The man… How do I know he won hurt me… ” She steels herself, deciding she will do what it takes to complete to her goal

As Avery approach the man sitting on his chair she could see that he is well built and his tall dark cloak conceals much of his feature including his face, she also notice a strange axe sheated on his back, ”hes armed ” she mutters

”H-hey there good sir ”

The man turns to her and stands up revealing his towering height, Avery almost took a step back when the giant rose from his seat, ”what do you want? ” The man ask in a deep baritone voice,

Avery calmed her nerves wishing not to make a terrible first impression ” I-i heard you where going north ” she tilts her head in anticipation of his response

The man looks at her for a moment, ”yes ”

”O-oh well maybe I can accompany you on your jour- ”

”No ” he cuts her off,

”E-eh? ”

”Go find someone else ” the man turns and makes his way towards the exit

”W-wait ” Avery yells out and runs to follows the man outside, as she reaches the door she bumps into him making a dull thud ”

The man turns and stares her down, Avery recovers from accidentally bumping into him, his body was unusually hard

”I-i don have a lot right now but I need to head north ” she says anxiously,

”I don want your money, ” he replies,

She deliberated on what to say next

”I- I know how to get north! ”

The man stops in his tracks, he slowly turns to face her, his face was not visible but she could feel the mans soul piercing gaze,

”Y-you don know the path north do you? ” She says careful not to offend the man

He does not respond

”I can help you, but I need someone to accompany me since traveling alone has become too dangerous ”

The man pauses, he seems to be thinking ”very well then, you may come along ”

She was surprised at his response, but grateful, she approaches the man who now seems less threatening, ”T-thanks!, I wasn really expecting youd agree, ”

The man does not respond

Seeking to break the silence, Avery finds the need to introduce herself ”I-i am Avery by the way ”

The man removes his cowl revealing his face, his skin was a tan color and his hair was pale white with a strands of red, he would have been a fine looking man if it wasn for the big scar around his cheek

”Im Raydon ”

High mountains, Obsidian fortress 11 AM

The high mountains where said to be the tallest mountain range in the world, towering the surrounding landscape and, within its frigid snow covered peak lays the obsidian fortress, a mighty construct whose dark stone shell contrast with the pale white snow, it is home to the hunters of the scarlet watch, an organization dedicated to the eradication of those unnatural creations and creatures, primarily monsters known as amalgari

Inside its many halls, a lone figure watches over the frozen land dressed in fine scarlet robes unbothered by the cold, he holds a talisman engraved with an all seeing eye, the symbol of their organization, his silent contemplation is broken when a man from behind greets him, he was standing upright and proud wearing chainmail armor and a red tabard with a golden eye pattern woven in the center

”My lord…you wish to speak to me? ” The man speaks,

The robe figure turns his head around slowly

”Virn ” his lord says ”Youve heard what happened to the execution team sent to kill him… Right? ”

Virn pauses for a brief moment, ”Yes ” he replies, ”It was terrible my lord, He… He slaughtered them like animals ”

Virns master walks slowly passing him as he tighten his grip upon the talisman

”Indeed Virn, the massacre was the greatest loss we had in our organizations in recent history ” He mutters ”But you know… All those… Deaths could have been so easily prevented ”

”My lord? ” His master stops and turns to glare at him,

”Wasn it you who was tasked with holding him captive? ” Hearing this Virn quickly realizes where this conversation is headed towards,

”Had you done your tasked dutifully he wouldn have escaped in the first place ” the master exclaims with anger clear in his tone,

”With all due respect my lord, he was far too strong for me alone to- ”

”DO NOT GIVE ME THAT EXCUSE!! ”

”He was wounded!, he couldn have possibly been able to overpower you ” his master continues,

Virn trembles slightly , ”Well anything to say for yourself? ” His master prods him

”My lord, please… I know I failed but… Let me redeem myself… I personally know those who he killed so I loathe him as much as you do too so please let me prov- ”

”No virn ” his lord cuts him off

”One failure is enough already ” he continues,

For a brief moment silence fills the room as the Lord once again stares at the snowy land through the window, his grip loosening as he does,

”Im sending you to the province of Aldrinburg ”

”A-aldrinburg!? ” It was a province located north where inexperienced hunters or those deemed unfit are sent, ”but my lord why?? ” Virn asked

”Plenty of good men and women died in a single night trying to hunt him virn, with such losses, we need to spread our forces thin ”

”a lot of things have been happening lately, the plague down south has been spreading mysteriously faster and those things those… Amalgari have started to appear more frequently now ” he says as he once again tighten his grip on the talisman, almost bending it,

he turns to look at virn , still trembling ”You are dismissed ” he says as he leaves the room,

Walking through the fortresss dimly lit hallway he enters his personal quarters, adorned with decorations and shelves containing weapons or trophies,

”o-oh! uhm Greetings my lord, should I send the message now? ” a young women spoke,

He looked at her, she seems eager to take his commands ”Yes…prepare the message for Executioner reikkart ”

”We need to get rid of him ”

”We need to get rid of this.. ”

”Ruinknight ”

End

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