Fanilly felt her steel clash against another's, as the edge of her dagger locked up the blade of a bandit's sword from the result of a wild swing. She forced him back and swung her longsword up in response, slicing upwards through his body and briefly lodging her blade in his chest. He fell back with a gurgle. To take another's life had long been the greatest obstacle in her mind for her commandment of the Iron Roses. However...
She had surpassed such worries prior to truly taking her spot as captain, for better or worse. No-one deserved to suffer, but murderers and thieves with no remorse would be paid in death. That, at least, was no longer among the many concerns the young girl faced in the course of holding her position. The battle already seemed to be won. And yet... something seemed wrong. These were bandits who had slain soldiers of Thaln, those who had trained all their lives in combat. But these common criminals seemed utterly unprepared for such a battle. Just as the ambush party...
"Do NOT let your guard down!" she called to her knights. She did not what them believing they could simply focus on nothing more then slaying the bandits. There could have been some kind of trick, a second group, something... even as his throne burned, the Bandit King did not appear.
She hesitated. A soldier, one of the men who had accompanied them in the charge along, stood nearby, having just struck another of the bandits' number dead. However, the bandits seemed largely preoccupied with other areas. Indeed, it seemed as if Fanilly's initial shielded charge had pushed them directly into the path of the other three groups. At this rate, the entire camp would be cleared of bandits swiftly and without loss. "... Something seems wro-"
As she scanned the battlefield for a point of entry, she spotted a man in leather armor, emerging from the forest. He swung up... a crossbow? He raised his weapon, took aim, and fired, a bolt whizzing through the air to strike... Fanilly didn't see exactly who. She had only seen enough to know it was one of the other girls. She was already in mid-stride. Perhaps he had fired once already, but she could stop him from shooting again! But he was wielding a much heavier set of equipment. Fanilly's armor was made from an alloy purchased from the northern dwarves long ago, a suit passed down through the Iron Roses, known for being almost unnaturally light.
And so, in that moment, Fanilly acted without thought. She had to protect her knights. She had to keep them safe. Lowering her shoulder, she slammed it into the man's side. He let out a surprised wheeze and stumbled, and she swung her sword up to knock the crossbow away in the same breath. The bandit drew a shortsword and lashed out, catching himself as he did. Fanilly raised her sword to deflect the blow, but he swiftly followed with another. The blonde locked his blade in her parrying dagger and struck out, impaling the man through his chest. He let out a wheeze, and as she drew back he fell with a thud.
"Haah... haah..." Fanilly looked back. She'd covered the distance between herself and the others, and the crossbow man, quite quickly. Only now did she realize just how far away he had been.
Only now did she realize that everything had become warmer. Hearing a violent creaking sound, Fanilly looked up in time to see an enormous tree in flames. It tilted, and fell towards the battlefield.
"Look out!" Fanilly cried. Taking a step forward she made a bid to run back to the battle, but everything happened quite a bit too quickly for her to make it. The burning tree crashed down ahead of her, cutting her off from her knights.
Inwardly she cursed herself. How had she been so foolish as to charge for that crossbowman, away from the battle?! It had been a kneejerk reaction. Her faith in herself plummeted. But she didn't have time for that. She had to return to battle, to-
There was a clattering sound beside her.
Fanilly turned. It was the body of one... one of her soldiers. Half of it. Her eyes widened as they traveled over the bloodied upper half of a man, cleaved apart cleanly.
"At last, the Iron Roses," spoke a deep voice. Fanilly looked up.
He was a huge man, taller then anyone Fanilly had ever seen before. He worse simple pants and was barechested, his face remarkably cleanshaven. He looked to be in his thirties, perhaps, with dark hair and a truly enormous sword resting on one shoulder, stained in blood.
"It really is true," he said, with an amused smile, "They did get a little girl for their captain. Heh."
He swung the blade off his shoulder.
Fanilly raised her sword and parrying dagger. But the sheer size of that sword... deflecting it seemed unlikely! Was this...?!
"Allow me to properly introduce myself," the man said, smile widening into a grin, "I'm no simple bandit king, even if that human garbage saw me that way."
He cocked his head to one side.
"Knight's Doom Jeremiah is my name," he said, "The Three Hundred Man-slayer!"
He charged.@HereComesTheSnow@Raineh Daze@Asuras@jdh97@Psyker Landshark@Click This@OwO@Animal@TheFake@ERode@Crimson Paladin@ghastlyinc@PaulHaynek