November 4th, 2001
The Guardsman - Written by Yarhj
Tavos paced back and forth across the ramparts, looking out over the
city in search of trouble. Looking in on the city, he found that amusing
somehow - no trouble had ever come from the wilderness, Vryce's shield
took care of that quarter. Never had an invading foe come within sight
of the golden spires of Medievia, but there was trouble nonetheless.
The junior guardsman looked around nervously, for his was an unpopular
job, and one of the most dangerous to boot. Patrolling the streets was
easy, and breaking up the occasional drunken brawl in the warrior's
quarter was never too difficult, but those fools that got it in their heads
to be adventurers, *they* were the worst. They roamed the city, killing
and stealing, with no respect for janitor or commoner or guardsman.
Even Beslan, the city's mayor, was not safe! Tavos sighed. No matter how
many of the fools he and his brethren managed to kill there were always
more. Perhaps if someone opened the gates to the baenlyrs...
"Tavos, grab your sword. You get to patrol Merchant Way today." The
voice of the Guardsmaster interrupted the young guard's plotting.
"Seven hells!" Tavos cursed, "That'll take me right through the
courtyard!" Some parts of the city were safer than others, but the Castle
Courtyard always had some of the pestilential adventurers roaming about in
it. He would be lucky to get out with his skin.
"You didn't join to complain, you take my orders!" With that the burly
Guardsmaster dragged Tavos unceremoniously down the stairs and thrust
him out the door.
"Be gone with ye! And don't come back until your watch is up, or I'll
have your hide for a rug!" Cursing all the while, the young guard
tramped towards Merchant Way and certain demise at the hands of some
incompetent. From some of the more grizzled veterans he had heard that there
were some places where the Gods had forbidden violence, but none of them
would tell him exactly where. Maybe he could find some sort of safe
haven, and stay there until his watch was finished.
Halfway through his patrol Tavos began to brighten, perhaps he could
make it through this ordeal somehow. He had not seen any of those
bothersome adventurers, and the other denizens of the city had given him no
trouble thus far. Perhaps the early hours kept most of the trouble at
bay. Whatever the reason for the lull, the slim city guard was thankful.
He was thankful right up to when he felt someone tugging at his wallet.
He spun around, and glimpsed a frightened adventurer backing up.
"Why you... Come back here!" Tavos shouted, as the short thief tripped
him and fled down the street. The guard gave chase, and suddenly came
face to face with his assailant who must have gotten turned around in
one of the many alleys. Tavos bellowed a war cry and charged into the
delinquent, knocking him flat on his back. Not giving the cutpurse any
time to catch his wits Tavos kicked savagely, and sent a silver dagger
flying from his foe's hands. The thief turned to flee, but the guardsman
caught up with him, and just as he raised his sword for the finishing
"Violence is NOT permitted here!" Boomed a voice from nowhere and
everywhere. Confused, the guard spun about, trying to identify the speaker.
Once more he tried to strike his foe, but his sword glanced off of an
invisible barrier mere inches from his quarry's skull. Finally it dawned
on him. He had found one of the safe havens of Medievia City. Though he
would have rather exacted justice on the delinquent he had been
pursuing, he decided he might as well use the safety to his advantage, and
settled in to wait until sundown. Every now and then he dashed quickly
into a nearby marketplace for some snacks. He sat and talked with the
citizens of the city for many an hour, until finally the light began to
fade. Under the cover of the dim light the guardsman made his way back to
As the sun began to set upon the golden city of Medievia, Tavos made his
way back to his post on the wall. The city truly glittered in the
fading light, and...
A viscous backstab from behind caused the guard to choke on his own
blood! Tavos whirled, and brought his sword up just in time to deflect a
second slash. It was all he could do to keep his sword moving, to match the
pace of his opponent.
His last block came a moment late, and a trail of fire traced its way
up his arm as his foe's dagger raked him. Summoning his last strength
Tavos smashed the hilt of his weapon into his opponents face, then turned
and fled. He ran at random, hoping to escape his pursuer, but where was
he? Was he lost? Wait, that building... Suddenly the guard knew where
he was. Only three more blocks to the barracks! Only three more blocks
until safety! Two! Just as he was about to pull open the door, a shadow
detached itself from a nearby wall. There was a horrible pain, then
Tavos awoke on the wall, wondering how he had gotten there.
"Tavos! what are you doing? You didn't join the Guard to loaf around!
Get back out there, you've got double watch today!"
The body of the Master of the Guards was never found.
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