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Kalieth and Tasla

Chapter 4 - A New Enemy Discovered

© Copyrighted by Furryhart 09/02/2014 ©

Warning: This story contains content of a mature nature!

He was still there, just starting to craw onto his hands and knees, when we came up on him and Kalieth said in a gruff voice “Don’t move or I will be forced to make you my next meal.” The feline froze and slowly turned and then flipped over onto his back and held a hand up. He then looked at Kalieth, as if not believing his eyes and said “Kalieth?” in a feminine voice. I looked at Kalieth and said “You know this ruffian?” He looked at me and then back at the feline and said “This is no ruffian, this is Karenna; one of the kings best and most trusted guards, or was.” I looked at her closely and could suddenly tell, that indeed she was a female. Her armor made her look like just another male soldier and her main was cut short. She looked up at us sadly and said “I am still loyal to king Rubin, but he has been overthrown by another wolf named Gathla and I am forced to travel with these vile roughs to find out what happened to him.”

Kalieth looked troubled and said “What do you mean, he was overthrown.” Katreena got up on shaky legs and said “All I know at this point is, King Rubin disappeared not long after his son Prince Lumbard left on a trade mission to Valizar. Then this Lord Gathla, with a large army of his loyal men showed up to challenge the king in single combat, for the rule of the land of Salidar. Sense the King or his son never showed up to accept the challenge, by the laws of the three wolf kingdoms, the lands were forfeit to the victor, on grounds of cowardice. Us loyal to the king were given the choice of joining or be banished, I had chosen to join, to find out what happened to our king, but even with all my efforts, I have failed to find out anything.”

Kalieth listened to all Katreena had to say and then said “Your words are true Katreena, that much is certain to me, but your methods are bit odd.” She nodded and said “Being as I was high in the ranks, I had figured the new king would just let me keep it. But instead I was forced to travel with these vile scoundrels on border duties, waylaying strangers. Luckily they never found out I was a female.” Kalieth looked at her limping about and said “Are you able to travel?” Katreena looked at me and said “I would have been fine if your companion here, had not kick me in the crotch so hard. Not that I blame her after the other one that was with me tried to rape her, before she gutted him. We have mounts, not far from here, if the bastards that ran away, have not stolen them all.” Kalieth said “The prince must be made aware of this immediately.” I looked westward, towards Salidar, realizing that, for now, I would have to wait to see it. We then followed Katreena back to where their mounts had been tied. All of them were gone except for an orange bedraggled looking cat like mount.

Kalieth looked at it and said “You still have old Jinga.” She patted her on the head and it purred and said “She’s the best Silvellion Lynx in the king’s army still. That’s why she’s the only mount here. They would not dare go near her for fear of her.” Kalieth laughed and said “More likely they though she would not bring a good price, even at the meat market.” It hissed at him, but Katreena soothed her and said “Don’t listen to him, Jinga, I know better.” petted her and then mounting her. I got up on Kalieth and Katreena looked at me and said “What happened to Sir Greggor, Kalieth and who is this tough little female that mounts you so boldly?” Kalieth looked at her sadly and said “Sir Greggor has fallen in battle to the scavengers, that you might have heard of. I too might have been dead, if I had not had the good fortune to be found by this warrior of the plains and been nursed back to health, by her. Katreena this is my new rider and my mate, Tasla.”

Katreena looked at me with confusion and said “RIDER… and… MATE!? But she‘s so young.” I blushed and Kalieth smiled and said “She has earned my respect and trust, as both a healer and a warrior and has become my new rider. We have also joined in love, mated and she now bears my offspring, with the blessings of Cajah and is my mate for life and beyond death.” Katreena seemed not surprised by this, but laughed and said “You old dog, to take one so young, as a mate and rider. Mate I could see, but rider?” At first I felt a bit put out by her words, but Kalieth said “She is fierce and yet a kind and gentle healer. Her sole burns brightly with fierceness in battle and also with the flames of passion in love. These are both held in high regard by Cajah and me. I have never found a warrior that has even come close, including Sir Greggor or even you, my friend.”

She looked down for a moment and then looked back up at me, with a tear flowing down her cheek and said “Well you should feel very proud to have the admiration of such a great and powerful warrior, as Kalieth.” and smiled and offered me her hand. I shook it and she looked at me strangely for a moment and then nodded and turned to Kalieth and said “Well my friend, I guess we must travel eastward, towards Valizar. Do you have any provisions? I only have enough food for me, for a few days.” Kalieth smiled wickedly and said “I could always eat your friends, but they would probably make me sick, from the filth, other than that we would have to go hunting.” Katreena shook her head and said “I forgot how unnerving your sense of humor could be Kalieth, but hunting would be no good around here. You would attract the wrong kind of attention and also find most of the game has been run off by our frequent patrols.”

She thought for a moment and said “I know of a place where some of our king’s loyal men are holding up. I go there from time to time, when I can get away, to give them information.” She looked up at me and continued” They won’t like me bring you there…” then she looked at Kalieth and said “…but they might make an exception for you. We can then get provisions and anything else you might need there.” Kalieth nodded and said “Swiftly then, we are in great need of hast.” She then spurred her mount on and we were off like a light, heading southeastward. By evening we could see the tents of the camp and came upon their sentries. Katreena looked back and said “Let me approach and talk to them first.” and we held back and let her approach them. She talked a while and one of the guards run toward the camp. She then motioned us to approach and we all walked into the camp with her as an escort.

I looked all around, at the soldiers watching us intently, as Katreena led us through the camp, to a large tent. They were all wearing the same red leather armor, with the golden wolf head, but they were watching us with a look, that made me feel nervous. I whispered into Kalieth’s ear “If our enemies and our allies are both wearing the same armor, how do we know which ones are which.” and he nodded his head ever so slightly and said “We cannot.” and looked at Katreena and narrowed his eyes. She brought us up to the tent, stopping by it and stood to one side. We looked at her suspiciously, as she turned and she smiled at us wickedly and said “Make yourself at home my friend… you’re going to be with us, for quite a while.” and pulled a rope, that pulled back both of the flaps of the tent. Inside I saw some kind of contraption and it then shot out a steel net at us, catching us by surprise and covering us completely. I was knocked off Kalieth and was pinned to the ground by its weight, as was he.

Kalieth roared menacingly and said “You traitorous bitch!!” and tried to rise, but couldn’t, as Katreena just stood there confidently and laughed wickedly saying “You fool, you just let me walk you right in here and capture you. You have become weak Kalieth, but our new emperor will still enjoy having you around to play with.” Then a black wolf, in a black robe, with red markings, stepped up saying something in a magical tongue, moving his hands and lightning sprang from them. It hit the net and I screamed in pain, as I felt it burn right through me and then there was darkness. In the frightening darkness, I could hear Kalieth’s heartbeat and could feel him near me and tried to cry out to him, but he could not hear me and then he was gone and I was all alone again and I went unconscious.

I came to, with a start, my eyes full of tears and felt, as if a dromo had ran over me. I discovered that I was tied to a post in the middle of a large tent. My hands were tied behind my back, around the post and my feet were tied in front of me. I could hear the guards laughing and talking about me, outside of the tent. I quickly began to working on the knot that was tying my dexterous little hands, with my nimble little fingers. They must have though me just another helpless little female, or they would have tied me up better, for the knot wasn’t that hard to undo at all. I soon had myself free, gathering up the rope into a coil and put it over my shoulders. I looked around the tent for something to use, as all my possessions were all gone and found a small throwing dagger, under a cot. I could see it was dark outside and smiled to myself, moving up to the back of tent and put my ear to it to listen. I heard nothing on the other side and began cutting a flap in the tent, just small enough for me to slip through.

I got down in the dirt and lifted the flap ever so slightly and peered out. I saw nothing and then crawled out on my belly and pressed up against the side of the tent and looked around. Suddenly I saw a soldier, of average build, walking out a ways and saw him lift his armor and pee. I crept up on him silently, as I did hunting the senar and grabbed him by the muzzle and slit his throat, before he knew I was there. I then eased him to the ground and held him till he stopped moving. I dragged his body into the tall grass and I searched him, stripped him of what weapons and gear, that I could use. I found out that he was a young male raccoon. I hated having to kill him and found myself shedding tears for him, but I had to do it, to rescue Kalieth. His armor was too cumbersome for my way of fighting, but he did have a short sword, short bow and some arrows that were a bit different from mine, but I could still use them.

I began hiding in the tall grass and moved around the camp silently looking for Kalieth. After a while of searching, I found him, in chains, inside a steel cage on a large cart that had some strange beast tied to it, similar to the ones the Prince’s carts were using. I thought to myself, with a fright “They must be going to take him to Salidar, I must stop them!” I moved around from shadow to shadow until I got close to him and found him unconscious and but still breathing. I reached over through the bars and touched his thick soft main and tears began flowing from my eyes. Then I saw someone coming towards the cart and ducked under it. I looked through the spokes of the wagon wheel and saw that it was the black wolf that has thrown the lightning at us earlier and he came up to the cart and looked at Kalieth saying “You’ll make a fine gift to the emperor. He will be very pleased.” and started moving towards the front of the cart.

Then I saw a set of keys hanging on his belt and silently drew the short bow and fitted and arrow to it. I slipped out from under the cart, behind him and drew the bow slowly, and it made a creaking sound. The black wolf froze and said “You have done well to have gotten loose of your bonds so quickly and find him. He is to be the emperor’s prize and I won’t let you take him.” He slowly turned, looking deep into my eyes and said “For you now find yourself not wanting to free him, but wanting to surrender yourself to me instead.” and suddenly I found I could not move, as I looking in his bright yellow eyes. I tried to loose my arrow and kill him, but found I just could not do it. He then said “Now lower your bow and surrender yourself to me.” and I started to lower the bow, tears welling up in my eyes, as I tried hard to resist his words. My arms and hands began shaking from the tremendous effort of my resistance. I had by this time lowered the bow and was about to undraw it, when I heard Kalieth grown and say weakly “Tasla?”

Suddenly my mind was clear of the black wolf’s words and I brought the bow up again and shot the black wolf right in the forehead. He fell back into the dirt and I then grabbed the keys, off of him. I was just about to unlock the doors, when an alarm went up in the camp, they had discovered my escape. I girt my teeth and growled in frustration and then saw the driver’s seat of the cart and thought to myself “How hard could it be?” I ran around and jumped into it, as soldiers began to come at me from every direction. I grabbed the reins and pulled on them and the beasts began backing up. I then got angry and said “Move you stupid animals.” and used the reins to slap them on the behind, with it. They leached forward and began running wildly, causing me to be thrown back in the seat hard. I saw we were coming up on a very stupid and surprised sentry, who tried to stop us, but was ran over by the beasts and I felt the bump, as the cart ran over him as well.

Kalieth was regaining his senses and said “Guide them as you would guide me, but with the reins, pull the left one, to go left and the right one, to go right. Pull both of them back to stop, or to back up.” I then guided them off the road and towards the north, running through the tall grass. I then tied the reins off and climbed on the top of the cage, as it bounced around violently. I worked my way to the back, holding tightly onto the bars, as I moved. I then slid over the back of the cage and slid down the bars to the door lock. I tried the first key, but naturally, that wasn’t it, so I tried the other key. Suddenly we hit a big bump and the door flung open with me holding desperately onto it. I held onto the door for dear life and removed the key. I then worked my way along the cage door, as it swung to and fro and into the cage falling at Kalieth’s feet. He looked down at me, shaking his head, smiling at me in disbelief.

I then unlocked his bonds with the other key and freed him of the chains. I looked at him and said” Are you well enough to get out of here?” He grinned and said “Being bounced around like this has made me quite awake, thank you. Get on and let’s get out of here.” I climbed on his back and held his thick furred main, locking my legs around his waist and he then jumped out, landing on his feet, as the cart sped on southward. We suddenly heard riders approach and dove to one side, down into the tall grass and laid low. The riders went rushing by, not noticing us and sped on after the cart. We then quietly moved away through the tall grass, feeling sore, tired and still very hungry, but we were alive and together again. We moved on for a long while side by side, every step an effort and then fell down in the grass and slept where we fell.

I was awoke the next morning by a gentle hand on my shoulder and turned to see a soldier in red leather armor and a golden wolf’s head. With a start, I rolled over quickly, onto my back and come up on my elbows and then saw more of them surrounding me. I looked around in fear and saw Kalieth just standing there, talking to an old gray wolf in red metal armor. The soldier that woke me up, removed his helmet, a handsome and clean cut looking male badger and offered me his hand and I let him pull me up to my feet, still dazed a bit. He handed me some kind of meat pastry to eat and I grabbed it quickly and gobbled it down, not caring if it was poisoned or not, just to fill the empty space in my stomach. He looked at me and smiled understandingly, saying “Mind the fingers, my lady.” and I looked at him and then the other soldiers and noticed the proud and polished look of them all and realized these must be the real outcasts.

I blushed and looked back at the male badger and said apologetically” I’m sorry, it’s just that, it’s been some time sense I ate anything last.” He smiled sympathetically and said “I heard as much from your companion. He sent me to wake you. Please come with me, my lady.” and he lead me over to Kalieth. He looked at me smiling, saying “Here’s my lovely mate and rider Tasla. Tasla this is Commander Foster, leader of the real king’s banished army. He took my hand and said “It such a pleasure to meet someone held in such high respect by Kalieth and his mate no less. Kalieth has been telling me all about your exploits and may I say I’m impressed, for one so young and beautiful.” and he kissed my hand, making me blush and look at Kalieth, but he only smiled with pride.

I looked back at him and said “Thank you sir, I have been on my own, in the hot savanna wilderness, sense I was sixteen and have learned a few things out there about survival.” and took my hand from his. He nodded and said “Brave and modest, good qualities for a Hestari wolf rider. I can see why he chose you, as his new rider.” Then he turned back to Kalieth and said “Now back to business, Kalieth. If what you say is true, we have a new enemy race like nothing we have ever seen before. But we are powerless to do anything about it, for our King is missing and overthrown and the Prince is too far away to the east to help us.” Kalieth stomped his right forepaw and said “Then gather what troops and provisions you can and we will try to find the Prince and let him know what’s going on in Salidar. Hopefully we can bring him and his caravan back, in one piece, back across the plains. Then we can try to find the King and get your Kingdom back. Only then can we hope to stop this new menace before it’s too late.”

Commander Foster rubbed his grizzled chin and said “Then rest a day or two and regain your strength and I will get you a new harness and some proper weapons and supplies for the journey.” Kalieth looked at him sternly and said “I will give you this day to get me what you can and will leave at dawn tomorrow. My mate and I need little, maybe a harness and saddlebags for me and some good weapons for her and some provisions.” Commander Foster then turned to me and said “What weapons and provisions do you need, my lady?” I thought a moment and said I have a short sword, fair bow and some arrows already. I could also use a light spear and maybe the use some bow and Fletcher’s tools for today. Also do you have a healer or shaman? All of my things were taken from me, when we were captured.”

Commander Foster then called out “Can someone find Alabaster, we have need of his services and can someone get this charming girl some Fletcher’s tools and a light spear.” Even before he finished his statement, a tall white wolf in a silver robe with blue markings on it, steeped up to me, as soldiers ran about getting me what I needed. He was taller than most wolves, at least six feet tall, with deep penetrating blue eyes and spoke in a soft voice, saying “Hello Tasla, I have been waiting for you to find me. Nalakeesa Mavha has only recently spoken to me about you and now here you are.” I looked at him surprised, as the name he spoke was my old shaman’s secret name, known to only to his closest friends. I looked at him confused and said “How could he speak to you? You are here and he is still in my old village.

He laughed and said “We shaman have our ways, needless to say he has told me that he has been watching you for a long time and knows, your destiny will soon be at hand. He also knew you were heading my way and wanted me to give you some of your things you may have misplaced.” he handed me a small back pack and some familiar looking weapons, then said “On your way back, he suggests you return to your village and see him. It is time, he said, that all in the village see what you have become.” I looked inside the pack and found all my possessions, just as I left them and to my astonishment the weapons, that he gave me, were mine! I went to look up at him and thank him, but he was gone. I looked all around, but he was nowhere to be found and the commander was still calling for him, as if he was never here.

Inside my pack I also found some additional scrolls and other alchemical powders that I had never seen before. I also found an amulet with a silver full moon and seven stars, with bright white gems, surrounding it on a silver chain. I could swear, that I could see a wolf’s head inside the moon, looking at me and smiling. It seemed to shimmer and glow brightly, as Kalieth came towards me and then went out, as he approached and said “I see you have somehow found your things, but how could that be and where did you get a moon amulet?” I looked at him and said “Did you not see a tall white wolf talk to me and giving me these things?” He shook his head and said “I saw no one by you for some time, but I have been talking to the commander, on and off, about many things and may have missed him.” I still looked around for the white wolf for some time, but never seen him again.

I placed the amulet around my neck and closed my eyes, as I felt a warm glow envelop my body. I opened my eyes and felt the weariness lifted from me, then Kalieth suddenly exclaimed “Tasla, the wound on your back has completely healed! The blessing of the Moon Mother is upon you, my love.” Then I hugged him and a warm glow enveloped us both and he too felt great, as his wounds were healed, as well. Somehow everyone else seemed oblivious to the glow, but we both basked in it, holding onto each other. Kalieth looked at me lovingly and said “I feel great now, let us eat and make ready for tomorrow.” We then got something to eat and Kalieth had himself fitted for a new harness and saddle bags that would be ready by morning.

Meanwhile, I worked on my weapons to get them ready, oiling and sharpening my blade and spear, waxing my bow string and bow to make it more quiet when drawing it and reworking the arrows that I had with me and made a few more. I spent the rest of the afternoon reading the scrolls Alabaster had given me. They had recipes for some new elixirs for healing salves and potions, various poison antidotes, a sleeping potion that could be applied to a weapon, or used in a drink, and various other useful elixirs, potions, pastes, and powders. Most of the ingredients were in my pack, but I will have to find some of the more rare ones. Kalieth and I were then given a tent for the night and we loved each other for a while and then we fell asleep snuggling into each other‘s soft warm loving bodies.

To be continued!

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