One guy got a little rowdy with the twins. He was just a tiny bit smaller. But certainly in the prime of his life. Maybe it was that youthful arrogance that fueled him. Never the less, he went straight for one of the twins and tried to beat him down. Only, the twin didn’t drop. He took the hit, square on his jaw. The group stopped, everyone jumped back in shock. For split second there was a sensible tension in the air. Like lightning was about to strike from a clear blue sky. But lightning didn’t strike. Instead, Histvich turned to face the one that attacked him. With a furiously scowl on his face. The guy tried to back up, but the tight pack behind him could barely open to let him pass. “Come here!” Histvich yelled as he jumped into the group, hunting him down like some animal. Some fell to the ground. Others into another. “Histvich!” yelled his twin in caution. But he was already gone, hunting his assailant. Before him though, more fists were thrown in anger. “This is going to be a riot.”
Keregar stepped up to his son and put a hand on his shoulder as he saw the violence spark. “Good. It’s been a while.”
He said. Herstvich imagined a smile under his father’s stone face and formed one of his own. He raised his weapon and started charging with an exuberant shout. Keregar, without even turning, said to Varzar: “Get the gems into safety.”
After which he tightened the straps on his metal gauntlets. For a split second, he did break a grin. It truly felt like a decade he last had a riot. They used to happen all the time back in his younger years. When everything felt so much more dynamic. Son kills father. Brothers fought wars. Conquest delivered upon any race’s doorstep. In a way, the Anathos wars hadn’t just changed the Gems. The times now, they felt strange. Foreign. So much of tradition had changed. Drakka was tamed. Maybe it was true what they said. Maybe Drakkan weren’t meant to live long. Maybe they were just expected to die gutted in a wild forest. Or bleed out on a battlefield. And maybe, that fate had now changed. Whatever it was, Keregar felt a strange sorrow coming over him. A sorrow that was quickly pushed away and replaced by rage.
Varzar didn’t feel so good. There was a definitive bitter taste in his mouth. Was this how father always felt? If so, no wonder why he always treated everyone and everything like crap. His stomach hurt so much, it felt like he was poisoned. He had filled his drinking sack with the stuff. Because while it made him physically ill, it also made him incredibly numb to everything. The whole world felt so far away. The mixture he made from the various boozes in the cellar might have tasted like the piss of a great Hornrat back home, it did make him feel numb. Like he wasn’t obligated to feel sadness or anger or confusion. No he just felt nothing. Still, when Nadia made a comment, he felt a short pang. “I- Do-“ in his nebulous mind he couldn’t really formulate a good answer to her remark. Did the market really look like the ones in Gemmenia? “Drakka is actually-“ he wanted to say, when Nadia commented on how much more colorful the marked looked. But his stomach didn’t like him opening his mouth for anything other than the unholy cocktail he had made. The cramps made it quite clear to him that he shouldn’t speak, and he did instantly shut up with no follow up.
He tried his best to stumble behind the group. Though it had to be obvious to everyone watching that the little Drakkan was quite beyond himself. This all lasted until a dead silence fell. Varzar couldn’t see what had happened in front of the group. He just knew that suddenly the twins were gone and a very real fight had broken out before them. Adrenaline has a weird effect on a brain under influence. It makes everything sharp again but at the same time, he had barely any real sensation in his muscles. When his father ordered him to hide the gems, he was ready. Except when he looked up, Xaelia was already gone. “No… No! No! No!” He yelled out. To no avail. Xaelia was gone. In his panic he grabbed Nadia, but in his rather physically senseless state that might have been a bit too forceful. The young Drakkan pulled her into the nearest tent, where a vendor looked quite surprised when they ran behind his counter table. “No! You’re not allowed to-“ but Varzar felt a strange sense of courage boil up. “Shut up! We’re hiding here!” the vendor wanted to pull his dagger, but right then a Drakkan was thrown through the tent roof into the store. Varzar overthrew the table, letting everything on it clang onto the floor and pulled Nadia behind it, so both were hidden. The vendor had already fled with most of his gold. Varzar, immediately pushed a hand over her mouth and put his pointing finger over his lips, bidding her to be quiet. “Where the hell… am I…” the dazzed faller said as he rose up. Varzar peeked out, just when the faller turned towards them. “There there, what do we have here.” The new Drakkan was a head taller than Varzar. He looked about a 150. Varzar dropped back behind the counter and put his hand on a the pommel of his dagger. “Come out now. I’m not going to hurt you.” The Drakkan said gently. “I know you’re here!” Suddenly he turned the corner of the toppled table. Varzar jumped up and pulled his dagger. “Not a step closer.” He said. “What do we have here. A little Drakkan and… is that mommy?” the Drakkan said with a rather demeaning tone. “How about I let you live and you just step outside, eh? No need to make this all ugly.” But Varzar kept himself between Nadia and the creep. “Come now. Just let me have a little taste of-“ the Drakkan, seeing no real threat in the little one, took two steps forward. He never had a chance for a third. With a deafening war cry Varzar charged him and pushed the dagger into his stomach. The larger Drakkan yelled: “Bastard!” as he dropped to a knee and tried to cover the wound. But Varzar, in his rather hazed state, didn’t feel done. He felt like a dam had just broken. An impossible amount of emotions flowed over him. Everything at once and it all turned into uncontrollable anger. He couldn’t speak, only scream in the incomprehensible language of rage. He pushed the Drakkan over and jumped on him. Then he stabbed him. Again. Again! Again! Blood spurted out of every wound and began to cover the little one. But he kept on screaming. Even when blood squirted into his mouth and onto his eyes. He kept yelling and stabbing even when he could barely see. His knife hit bone, organs, cartilage. Every time he plunged his knife into the now lifeless body he felt something else. Some other smoothness or resistance. Eventually his own rage wore off. Varzar couldn’t even hold on to the blade now. His arms shook as he dropped the steel on top of the corpse and crawled off of it. Even on arms and legs his entire body shook. A sickness, a wrongness rose up from within him and he puked on the floor there, next to the mutilated body.
Hirstvich was in the midst of battle, thoroughly enjoying himself as he slammed an axe into a face. Who was it? Why did he do it? Who cares? It was all in the name of the War God. “Drunn bless me!” he shouted as blood spat out of a fresh wound. He had just thrown some guy away when he finally reached his twin, who was thoroughly enjoying himself as well. “Hey bullneck!” Another Drakkan challenged. Both the twins turned to him. Then they looked at each other. “He’s mine!” Herstvich yelled. “Mine!” Hirstvich yelled back. Before the challenger could even react, two giant Drakkan charged him with horns up front. But it was Herstvich who impaled him on them and threw him over. After which Histvich pulled him up with his hair. “Which one of us is the Bullneck.” But the wounded challenger couldn’t say anything, not with two punctured lungs. Not that Histvich cared. He just slapped him. “Well?! Who is it?” The soon to be corpse just spat out blood. “Ah that is just unasked for.” Histvich said, after which he pulled his hair further back and cut the throat open. Herstvich, in the meantime, had already been swept away into some other brawl. Suddenly someone put a hand on his shoulder. He turned around, ready to punish whoever dared touch him. Only to see a friend. “Alreg!” He yelled excited, as he put both of his hands on his friend’s shoulders. Alreg did the same, stabilizing themselves from the pulls and pushes. “This is the best riot of the year!” Alreg shouted! “I know!” Herstvich yelled, after which he headbutted his friend and carried on with the fight.
Finding Keregar could never be hard. You just had to find the source of blazes and large boulders being flung around. Reaching him, however, was a whole different kind of labor. He stood in the middle of all chaos. Surrounded by brawls of their own and challengers who wanted to take a swing at a Drakkan. Some knew he was a warlord, others didn’t. Keregar held in his left hand a searing hot chain he had looted from a corpse and a Warhammer most would have to wield with both hands. “Come on! Are none of you worthy!?”
he challenged. And the challenge was answered from Drakkan all around him. But none could reach the Warlord. With every hit of the chain blazing flames erupted from the red-hot iron. If they come too close, a literal stone crushing strike of his hammer dealt a usual fatal blow. All around him the earth had cracked and fire raged unchecked. They were joined with spikes of ice and strong winds. It was pandemonium, chaos, a small moment of war within the very streets of the capital. It was joined with not just blood, rage and glory. But also with mud, dirt and the ugliness of death. And within the heart of that chaos was Keregar. Marked by fire and stone. But eventually, the fighting had to stop. The survivors either crawled or hobbled out. While others looted the dead and the left behind stalls. Not that there was all that much value left behind. Only then Keregar found Ineraz. Right when he sat down on a stump of rock.
Keregar smiled as he clutched his bleeding side. “Meeting after being blood-soaked. I see it as a good omen.”
He returned to Ineraz. “I want to invite you and yours.”
He said, motioning to his gems. “To Kereg-Kor. What say you, Ineraz, famous hunter of Drakka. Would you honor an old warlord with a hunt?”
He said, after which he kept silent for a minute. Behind him Varzar appeared from his tent with Nadia close by. The little Drakkan looked like he just crawled out of a grave. At the same time, the twins rejoined their father. Each wearing huge smiles and drenched in blood.