The Knights of Cheydinhal (continued)

Once on the other side of the Oblivion gate, I checked around for any signs of danger. I didn't see any of the usual monsters in the area. Odd, since there usually is at least one to greet anyone foolish enough to enter this realm. I checked around to see if Farwill was anywhere in sight, but the only thing I could see was what looked like a mangled body a few steps away.


It was one of the Knights of the Thorn, Farwill's group. He had a huge gash in the side of his neck, obviously where a very long blade had sliced through him. He probably died quickly, as it didn't look as though he had even drawn his sword. Fool. He should have had it out and at the ready. Obviously, the thing that killed him was more prepared that this so-called Knight.


I checked ahead for the usual towers, but this time, they were so far in the distance that I could barely see them. That probably meant a lot of walking around the area, looking for the right path to the right tower (or combination of towers).


A 10 minute walk produced yet another of these Knights, this one stripped of his armor, lying in a pool of his own blood. Apparently, the things that had killed him had taken what they thought might be valuable to them, as I couldn't even find a good weapon anywhere near the corpse.

Grateful that it wasn't Farwill's body, I pressed on, finally encountering a few of the beasts that enhabit this realm.

I looked over the edge of the pathway I was on, noting that there was another pathway down below me. I would have to find a way down there, as it was just too steep to climb down safely.


I came across yet another of the Knights of the Thorn, dead and mangled like those before him. Again, not Farwill, but not a good sign, since this would be the third of the six men that had some with him.

It wasn't too much longer before I found a tunnel that lead down to the lower areas that I needed to get to. There, I found two more of Farwill's men. That would mean he only had himself and one more Knight. I doubt he'd have made it out of this place alive, much less successfully close the Gate.


Finally, at the lower end of the tunnel, I met with the first non-monsters I had seen in a long time. It was Farwill and his last remaining Knight of the Thorn Bremman Senyan. I would have expected that they'd be happy to see some help, but Farwill was more annoyed than anything else.

"It's about time someone got here." he snorted, half expecting an army, I guess. "What took you so long?"

"I am Shakula. What happened to your knights?" I asked.

"Well, I'm glad you asked." he said proudly. "I sent out with the rest of the Knights to rid this gate from the face of our fine world. Well, we were overwhelmed as we came through the gate. Dozens of monsters, you see."

"I see." I said, nodding as if I really cared for this fish-story. "Please continue."

"Oh, thank you." he said. "Well, I myself was able to kill perhaps, oh, two score of them, but they just kept coming." He turned to his friend, continuing, "Only Bremman and I remain alive. However, with you here now, we can take the Sigil Stone from that citadel and complete our quest for the good of all Cheydinhall!"


"Your father sent me here to get you out of here." I said.

If his eyes could bleed daggers, I would be dead right now. "Are you mad?" he replied. "A Knight of the Thorn never returns home until the mission is done. it's our way. Now, in my father's name as Count Indarys of Cheydinhal, I order you to lead me to that Sigil Stone! I suggest we use the Reman Sweep formation. You'll assault and we'll guard the rear flank."

I looked at him with an angry stare for a moment, then realized that this would keep them behind me while I shot off some of my more deadly spells, ensuring that they'd have at least some chance of survival.

"Certainly." I said, "But keep behind me while I'm shooting these spells. Some of them take more than one shot, but an ordinary person will be killed by just one blast of any of these spells that I'll be using."


Once we all had our positions right, we made our way to a bridge leading to a group of towers, once of which appeared to be the central tower.

In the distance, at least two Xivilai were watching for intruders.

"Stay behind me." I warned. "I'm about to surprise them." You can attack after I blast them."


I summoned the most powerful shock spell I could muster and let it loose. The guys were impressed. One Xivilai fell within seconds, the second one charged for an attack. I was about to let loose with another shock spell, but Bremman and Farwill charged the monster, swords drawn. Had I let loose with my spell, all three of them would have died right there. I let the two of them fight with the Xivilai while I released the shock spell at an approaching daedroth.


"Victory is ours!" shouted Farwill. "But I fear I am badly wounded."

He was bleeding badly. Then I noticed that Bremman was also sporting what appeared to be a broken arm.

"Both of you. Stand right here. Don't move!" I said. I performed a healing spell on each of them, over and over, until both of them were back to full health.


"You're very handy to have around with such a spell." noted Bremman. "I'm glad you're here."

"Thank you." I replied. "Just make sure you don't get in harms way of these distruction spells. They're hand-crafted by me, and they'll kill an ordinary human. Or Dunmer."

"Oh, just so long as we stick to the plan, I believe we will do fine." replied Farwill.

Arrogant as ever.


The way to the tower was clear now.

The storms of Oblivion raged all around us as we headed directly to the central tower's main entrance.

These boys hadn't seen anything yet.












COMING UP: Continued.........

PAGE 037