The Liberation of Cruinne Part 2

Posted: June 5, 2010 in The Liberation of Cruinne
Tags: , ,

“We will wipe out the insurgents! We will be victorious!”

“We will lose,” muttered Rhyst Ongerhyst. He turned to his friend and fellow collaborator, Priom. Priom only went by one name, and no one dared ask him what his last name was. Legend had it that the last person to ask him had gone to the moneychanger’s one day only to realize that his name had been erased from their records. He never learned what Priom’s last name was.

“You surely agree with me? Our leader is an imbecile, and was only able to get to where he was by his devious words and skillful swordplay. He has no head for strategy and will not face the truth.”

Priom nodded. He was also a man of few words, and never spoke with more than he had to.

“The others have been notified about the meeting in my tent tonight?”

Another nod.

“Then it’s settled. We will depose our leader in the midst of battle and come to a rightful truce with the insurgents, for we are really the insurgents, and they are the defenders!”

*

That night, Baron Lord Olc was going over some maps, trying to remember what his strategists were saying. Bah! He had no head for this. His skill was in fighting and using others to get what he wanted. Let others do this. He looked up as a dark shadow flitted into his tent. “Ah, they are meeting tonight? Well, good. I want you to go in there and find out all you can. We will stop these rebels within my army and tomorrow stop the rebels fighting against us.”

The shadow bowed low and moved out.

*

Rhyst greeted his fellow conspirators at the entrance to his tent, motioning them in. He took a hurried glance around to make sure no one was watching this secret meeting, then ducked inside.

“My friends, we stand at the pinnacle of a change of government. I presume you all have heard of or know personally the man called Hasios Politon. He is our Baron Lord’s target. What the Baron does not know is that he is our target. The plan calls for a breakaway of troops from the Baron’s forces in the beginning of the battle, almost before the two sides meet. Priom, you will take charge of the cavalry that you have under you. Ergis, take your archers and do the same. I will take my infantry core, and Irrita, you will take your Raiders as well.”

Irrita, a dark-haired woman with a volatile temper, bowed low.

“If all goes well, perhaps a quarter or more of our forces can be turned against the Baron. The insurgents will use our numbers to be able to defeat the Baron, for I have chosen you for a special reason. We all control the best fighters, archers, cavalry, and Raiders in the army. Our troops’ skill is unmatched by the rest of the army, and we may even pick up more from dissidents that we are unaware of. Who knows, the rebels even may have something up their sleeve. But we will defeat the Baron and end his reign of cruelty!”

Rhyst showed his fellow traitors the way out, watching each one of them to see which way they had to go. Ergis went right to his tent, as did Priom, but Irrita took a different path. He stood up, donned a black cloak to disguise him against the night sky, and followed her at a distance. She first went right, then took a left, then aimed straight for the Baron Lord’s tent. Rhyst gritted his teeth. Traitor! But then, Irrita turned on her heel and went down another corridor straight to—the mess hall. Rhyst grinned. She must have been hungry after their meeting. He made his way back to his tent and thought no more of it.

*

Irrita peeked out from the mess hall. Good, he was gone! Now she could get on with her assigned mission. She made her way back to the Baron Lord’s tent and entered. He looked up.

“Irrita. I trust you have some important information for me?”
“Yes, my Lord. The three traitors are Rhyst, Priom, and Ergis. They believe the men under them and under me will follow us to the rebels.”

“This could work to our advantage,” muttered Baron Olc. He thought for a moment, then wrote something on paper and handed it to Irrita. “In case ears are listening where they are not supposed to, these are your instructions for tomorrow.” He pointed to a corner of the tent, which was darker than the surrounding material. Irrita nodded and made her way out of the tent toward the section as the baron waited inside. In a few moments then he heard a squeal, a curse, and a successive, “Lie still and keep quiet, if you want to live!” He strode out of the tent and found Irrita bending over a man, obviously a spy, with a dagger at his neck and a boot on his chest.

“What do you want to do with him?” asked Irrita. In a second, the baron rendered his decision.

“Ordinarily, we would try him in court. But we have not the time or the place to do so. So I will take the place of judge.” He drew his sword and ran the man through. “And executioner. Any qualms about the decision Irrita?”

“N-None my Lord!”

“Good! Dispose of this trash, will you? I need my sleep for the morning.”

“Right away, Lord!”

Baron Olc went back into his tent, pleased with the discovery of the spy and of the traitors amidst his camp. But he couldn’t shake the feeling that something was going to go very wrong.

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