As he landed on the deck of a smaller vessel he released Alexa and Tobias, allowing them to stand on their own two feet.
He looked them over for a moment making sure they were all right.
“Well done you two. Glad to know the both of you are not worse for wear.” He said attempting to give them an encouraging smile, though it seemed somewhat lackluster. He soon mentioned why.
“Master Tailor I am sorry about your fellows, I fear I owe them an unrepayable debt for following me into this madness.” Tyrhallan spoke before he noticed the torn clothing at Tobin’s shoulder.
His expression softened and while inclining his head he said.
“Brightwind, take care of our mage and take a breather as well. We need to regain our bearings before we throw ourselves into the fray again.”
He raised his eyes to survey their surroundings.
They stood on a smaller Belisian vessel giving them a moment to catch their breathes, as the captain was not mad enough to take on a Vaimese frigate by himself and acting more like a support vessel for the separated and wounded and there were many of those there already.
The enemy to their credit hadn’t attempted to shoot it out of the sky yet, so they still seemed to retain some shreds of honour.
As Tyrhallan was scanning the battlefield it was clear he was looking for something…or someone.
His eyes widened as he locked on two individuals.
A sight he had hoped to never see. Two warriors facing one another with one having the upper hand over the other.
An almost inaudible “No” escaped his lips, turning away from Alexa and Tobias as he watched a Vaimese soldier have his Uncle at his mercy.
With his sword raised and at the ready moving to the side of him.
A thing only reserved for executions.
Before the other two could stop him, Tyrhallan sprinted across the deck.
Clearly moving towards the scene unfolding, he powered up his ki becoming nothing but a vague blur, before his boosters came on to support the gained speed and launch him across the chasm that was between the ships. That was before the skies rumbles and several guns fired in such ferocity that whatever was in their way would be completely obliterated…
Ravros eyed his old enemy with a look of utter satisfaction. They practically gleamed with glee.
Having his old nemesis on his knees was something that felt almost too good to be true.
So easily the defeat had been it was almost a shame to kill him so early in their victory.
After all, had he not yearned for this day for years, having spent many a night on how much more could he humiliate and break him? To have it all happen so easily was rather anticlimactic.
Now Ravros was no fool, he knew the danger of letting this man live, in fact he relived that old slip up over and over in his mind that there was no mercy left anymore inside for his enemy.
But perhaps the humiliation would be even more profound if he allowed him to live long enough to see the destruction of all that he held dear. Of how his beloved country and city would fall and the Empire would prevail.
How his fellow knights were slaughtered before his eyes.
As he placed the cool tip of his blade against Uilles’s neck forcing him to look up he spread his arm wide.
“Do you remember Venray? All those years ago? Our first skirmish? You were but a knave then but the surroundings should be able to jog your memory.”
Uilles eyed him with contempt, though he kept a stern face despite the blade scraping along the skin of his throat as Ravros walked and moved.
“Oh I seem to recall we fought and your side had underestimated us, you thought you could take our water on a whim, sadly though we were better prepared than you thought.” Uilles cooly replied as he kept himself from staring at the crazed madman.
“Even now you still can’t win unless you cheat!” He cut sharply, feeling the blade press a bit tighter.
“You think this is cheating?” Ravros asked venomously.
“How desperate do you have to be to be swallowing Dursa’s Poison?” Uilles clapped back.
“Sacrifices have to be made, such is the life of a soldier…What can be more noble then to die for the hope of a tomorrow?”
“Hope of a tomorrow? Your Empire has brought this world nothing but misery, slavery and death. We have beaten you time and again and we will do so this time around.” Uilles argued hearing the exasperated gasp of indignation coming from Ravros.
“We have your backs against the wall. Look around you Venray! Look at how well your people can die!” He said taking the sword and pointing in a wide arch around them. “How many more of your knights and mages must we slay? How many have to die before you bend the knee and admit your defeat? Are you that proud, is your pride of that much worth to you?”
He pointed to the many that lay slain, the lifeless eyes staring back at them. Stained by debris and blood marking them amongst the lost. Those were still somewhat recognizable at all. Unlike the poor sods that had met their horrible ends by magic, they were simply too ghastly to gaze at for too long.
Charred, burned skin and fingers contorted in terrifying ways. Purple or blue pale skin with the veins as clearly visible and mouths agape in the endless scream that remained forever stuck in their throats. Then there were the incomplete ones…gods…those poor bastards.
Vaimese and Belisians lay amongst one another forever silent, their lives cut short as they would never return home to their loved ones.
Never give birth to new generations or creations of their make. Their lights snuffed out before they truly had time to burn.
“How many of these lives could have been saved? How many died for a cause not of their own making? For an offence they never committed? All because of duty.”
“They died for King and Country.”
“They more than likely died because they were ordered to go into battle, for the good of Belisio and all that.” He snorted. “And unlike you and me, they had no idea what they were in for...sad really…and all for some outdated fool wearing a crown and the bitch sits by his side.”
Uilles glared at Ravros now.
“Finally, there it is…a sliver of malice and hate towards me. I was half expecting you to stay indifferent until I lopped your silver haired head off.”
“IF you want to kill me than do it already, instead of monologing like some pedantic villain from a bed time story.” Uilles barked in annoyance.”
Ravros moved his sword back as he motioned with his other hand.
“All in good time my dear Venray…I still have something to show you.” He turned to face the bridge for a moment, making sure they watched as he brought his hand up next to his head, holding his fist closed.
Uilles tried to stand during this moment and attempt to grab a weapon that lay close by, but it was kicked away by Ravros’s speedy return to attending his captive.
“Tut, tut, Venray, a little patience…your time to die will come. First I want to you bear witness to the greatness of our Empire and…your defeat.” He said as the guns on the ship suddenly turned and their turrets turned skywards and away from the battle lines. Several other frigates did so as well and Uilles realized this had been preplanned all along.
“What do you hope to gain from this?” He asked as his eyes followed the path the bullets would take, before horror filled his eyes.
“Blow it from the skies!” Ravros laughed as he brought his arm forward, stretched out towards the Castle of Olysium. “Fire!”
The roaring of the cannons seemed louder than anything else to Uilles as he watched the impact the shells made and the destruction it caused.
One of the towers was cut in two instantly, with the heavier top tumbling down to the poorer sections of the city below. The high walls and great Fort blasted at so many times that only crumbling pieces remained as the rest too was launched, raining debris at the city below.
The royal tower remained standing the longest, before an exploding charge was send at it forcing it to collapse on itself. Huge chunks that had fallen down had cleared a path, turning half of the lower lying area into nothing more but dust and rubble. The screams and cries that echoed through the streets of the city even reached them there on the battlefield and Uilles felt tears sting in his eyes as he watched the destruction wrought by the frigates.
Ravros smiled pushing Uilles’s chin up with his sword to face him.
“Do you understand now that there can be no victory? What is there left to protect? The time of your precious little knights are over…your little king and queen are gone…stop fighting the inevitable.”
Uilles squared his back and glared at him.
“I’d rather swallow pigshit! You will pay for this Ravros…maybe not by my hands, but if the Gods are merciful it will be by a Belisian!” He snapped making Ravros smile.
“Always the obstinate…fine have it your way!” He said as he took his stance again and raised his sword once more to end it all.