Arc The Lad Fan Fiction ❯ Aftermath ❯ Chapter 17 ( Chapter 17 )
"Oh damn," Kharg groaned. He stood hastily, drawing his sword.
Darc just scowled in annoyance as he did the same.
Seven men holding guns emerged from the forest. All of them wore what looked like some kind of soldier's uniform.
"Don't move, drop your weapons!" one ordered.
Kharg looked at the well-armed men with guns aimed at both of them and groaned inwardly. "How can we drop our weapons if you told us not to move?" He mentally kicked himself for his stupidity the minute the words left his mouth.
The man who'd spoken gave him a smirk. Suddenly he brought his gun up and fired a single shot.
Kharg had to fight to keep from reacting when a bullet plowed into the ground at his feet.
Darc glared at Kharg. "If you want to try being a smart ass with someone who has a gun wait until I'm not around to be caught in the middle."
Kharg shrugged sheepishly. "Sorry."
"Shut up unless you are spoken to, Deimos, and as for you, civilian don't try to be cute with me. I'll tell you only one more time, toss them aside or be shot," the man said.
Darc and Kharg traded resigned looks, knowing they couldn't fight against so many guns. Reluctantly they tossed the swords aside.
"Better, I am Captain Rajek, explain why you have broken the law, civilian," the man said.
Kharg blinked, knowing he was at a disadvantage. "I'm sorry, sir, what law?"
Rajek's eyes narrowed. "A Deimos is not allowed to own, let alone carry, a weapon of any sort."
"I'm very sorry, sir, it won't happen again," Kharg said contritely.
Rajek sniffed. "See that it doesn't, now I need to see your papers."
"Papers?" Kharg had a horrible feeling he was getting them in deeper trouble every time he opened his mouth.
Rajek gave Kharg a very suspicious look.. "Your ownership papers for the Deimos." He gestured first to Kharg's right arm then Darc 's. "He bears your mark, so I assume he is your slave. Only Deimos slaves accompanied by their masters are allowed to wander freely."
Kharg's thoughts whirled as he tried to think of what to say then he noticed the look on Darc's face. It was obvious his twin had plenty to say and none of it was going to be polite. "They were lost on our way here, I fear, " he said quickly. "I was hoping to replace them once we reached a town."
Rajek smiled thinly and nodded slightly. “I see, well… that is most unfortunate indeed.”
Darc felt a chill run up his spine, something was wrong, he could sense it. Suddenly, to quickly for him to even attempt to struggle, Darc was seized from behind by two of the soldiers and forced roughly face first to the ground.
Kharg instinctively stepped forward. "What the hell are you doing?"
"I told you Deimos are not allowed to wander freely. So I'm taking him into custody," Rajek replied. "He will be put on the auction block two days from now."
Darc hissed as shackles were clamped around his wrists then locked painfully tight.
Kharg was furious and frightened for Darc. "Let him go! You have no right!" Something crashed into his skull and he lost consciousness.
The soldiers yanked Darc back to his feet. "The prisoner is secured, captain," one said.
"Bastards!" Darc snarled.
Rajek walked calmly over to stand in front of Darc and studied him. Drawing back his hand he hit Darc hard across the face with enough force that it made him and the two soldiers holding him stagger. "Hold your tongue, Deimos, unless you'd prefer to lose it. Let's go."
The soldiers left, dragging Darc with them and leaving Kharg senseless on the ground.
Groaning in pain, Kharg slowly regained consciousness and found he was in a building lying on a comfortable pallet. For a minute he couldn't recall what had happened, but then he remembered. "Darc!" He sat up, wincing as the throbbing pain in his skull increased a little. Slim, but strong hands pushed him back down. He found himself looking up at a woman with green eyes and ebon hair.
"I'm Adrienne, it's alright, you're in my family's home and you're safe," the woman soothed. "You mustn't move around to much."
Kharg did as she said. "I can't stay here, they took Darc."
Adrienne nodded. "I know, I'm sorry we couldn't save him."
Kharg tried to sit up again, but she stopped him. "You were there?"
"Yes, but we weren't able to take on soldiers armed with guns, but two of our people went to the town to try to see what we might be able to do," Adrienne said.
Kharg frowned. "What are they going to do to him?"
Adrienne patted Kharg's shoulder. "Don't worry, they won't harm him beyond a few bruises because it would lower his value at the auction."
Kharg frowned. "What auction?"
Adrienne looked startled and a bit puzzled. "The slave auction, all Deimos captives end up there. I thought you knew."
Kharg closed his eyes. “Damn it all. I have to go after him. I can’t let this happen to him.”
Adrienne shook her head. “You’ve been unconscious for three hours and you aren’t in the shape to go after anyone, it won’t do your friend any good if you are captured as well. They’ll sell him into slavery but they’ll execute you.”
Just then someone else entered the room. “So how fares our guest?” a rough, deep voice asked.
“He’s awake, but very concerned for the safety of his friend,” Adrienne said.
Kharg opened his eyes to see who the newcomer was and gasped. "You're a Lupine!"
Adrienne took the Lupine's paw and smiled warmly at him. "This is my mate, Stalker. What's your name?"
Kharg was a little surprised by the fact they were mates, but he managed a weak smile. "I'm Kharg."
Adrienne gave him a truly brilliant smile. "Is Darc the name of your friend?"
Kharg hesitated than decided to come clean. "That's his name, but he's not my friend, he's my younger brother, my twin."
Stalker offered Kharg his paw and they shook hands. "Pleased to meet you, don't worry, we'll do everything in our power to retrieve your brother. This I swear on the honor of my pack."
Kharg nodded. Since he'd met Volk he knew how seriously a Lupine took their oaths. "Thank you for that and for helping me. I’m not really from here. Can you tell me why Deimos are treated this way?”
Adrienne sat down in a comfortable looking chair and Stalker sat down cross legged at her feet. “It’s a very long story, but I’ll tell you if you truly want to know.”
Kharg cautiously sat up, glad to find that the pain wasn't so severe this time. "I've got plenty of time. I would like to know if you wouldn't mind."
Adrienne nods. "Alright then, I'm going to give you the short version though." She pauses briefly then began. "Humans and Deimos lived peacefully on this land for a long time, we traded and mingled with each other. There were two leaders, one Human and one Deimos. The Human leader was called Gabriel and the Deimos was leader was called Talon. They were close friends and allies for a long time. That all changed when Gabriel and his bride were killed in an accident. Their son, Zane, took over his father's position then everything changed. He hated all Deimos though no one knows why and strongly believed they were nothing but freaks and beasts. He declared the long time alliance between the two races null and declared war."
Stalker nodded. "Things got bad, but they got even worse when Talon was assassinated by a Human. Any Deimos in Zane's territory were either killed or enslaved. Zane raised a huge army and hundreds of Deimos died some fled to other lands to escape.. Now Zane is the sole leader of this land, a dictator who rules by threats and fear. That's the short version, the long one would take much longer, but we could tell you if you want."
Kharg nodded. "So what laws are there around here? That captain Rejak mentioned some, what are the others?"
Stalker growled. "I can guess which ones. Deimos are forbidden to own or carry a weapon and a Deimos may not wander freely unless accompanied by their master."
Adrienne sighed. "You're lucky to be alive. Rajek could have ordered you shot on the spot as a rebel after you tried to stop them from taking your twin."
Stalker snorted. "That's for damned certain. Now let's see, here's some other laws. A Deimos can't own property or a business, marriage between a Deimos and a Human is forbidden, a Deimos who attacks a Human will be executed, no questions asked, a Deimos caught stealing will be punished however the victim wishes, it could be a public flogging, slavery to the victim or imprisonment. Last, but not least is the one that doomed your twin. A Deimos caught by the guards without a owner can be taken into custody and sold into slavery."
Kharg shook his head, shocked by some of the laws. "So Deimos have few or no rights here. You said marriage between a Human and a Deimos is forbidden so how did you get married, if you don't mind me asking."
Stalker glanced lovingly up at his mate. "Her father preformed the ceremony."
Adrienne smiled, but there was a hint of sorrow in it. "Three days later my father, mother and older brother were arrested. After a mockery of a trial they were declared traitors. They were executed the same day."
Kharg winced. "I'm sorry."
Adrienne nodded. "It's alright, so tell me about yourself and your twin."
Kharg told them about all that had happened. Some things were left out because they were personal for him or Darc.
Both Adrienne and Stalker were quiet for a while after he was finished.
Adrienne was the first one to speak. "Finding out about each other like you did must have been hard for both of you."
Stalker nodded. "You, your twin and your friends did something very important and you deserve credit and respect."
Adrienne sighed. "It is a shame that Humans were you come from are as fearful of Deimos as they are here."
Kharg sighed. "It seems it's worst here."
Adrienne moved the conversation to a new subject. "So you're part Drakyr? There hasn't been any of them on Ayrith since I was a child."
Kharg noted the name of the land they were on for later use. "That's right. There are Lupines, one of them is a friend of Darc's, his name's Volk. Only difference between you is your fur color. Volk's is blue while yours is black."
Adrienne stood suddenly. "Enough talk for now, you should rest until supper is ready, Kharg."
Stalker stood too. "Don't worry as soon as we hear anything about your twin we'll let you know, rest now."
It took a while, but at last, exhausted, Kharg fell asleep. He only woke up when Stalker and Adrienne entered the room with supper, a third person was with them Kharg managed to get sat up after a brief struggle.
Adrienne set the tray in Kharg’s lap then gestured to the newcomer. “Kharg, I’d like you to meet our daughter, Alisha. She’s our best tracker.”
Alisha had black hair and green eyes like her mother‘s. She looked completely Human if you didn’t count her claws, her wolf like ears, and tail. “Hi.”
Kharg managed to smile. “Nice to meet you, Alisha.”
Stalker gestured to the tray. “Eat, Alisha has news about your brother, she’ll tell you about it while you eat.”
Kharg nodded and began eating the food, one eye on Alisha.
Alisha sat down next to the bed. “Evan, he’s another tracker and I followed Rajek and his thugs to the closest town, that’s Lyman. I have a wolf’s hearing so I was able to hear a lot of things. It seems like your brother is going to be held in the training camp for at least a week to be properly trained then sold at an auction where only the wealthiest will invited to attend. Evidently Rajek thinks your brother is exotic enough to bring a very high price.”
Kharg frowned thoughtfully. “Is that good or bad?”
Alisha shrugged. “Depends, is your brother stubborn?”
Kharg couldn’t help laughing a bit. “Very, he won’t be easy to handle.”
Alisha nodded. “That’s good and bad, it’ll mean more beatings, but it also gives us a slightly better chance to rescue him. It will be easier to break him out of the training place then someone’s house.”
Kharg finished his food and pushed the tray aside. “How are we going to do it?”
Now I’ve done it, the next chapter is going to be murder to write! L On the other hand I think I created an interesting OC in Alisha that might be worth keeping around. Well, R/R please and feel free to toss ideas at me if you wish. Can’t promise I’ll use them, but I don’t mind receiving them!