Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Siege of the White Mountain; Volume 2: Fields Running Red--Part 7

“So… we’re not going to use the Paths of the Dead?” said Palamedes.

“Nope,” answered Morgaine. “Too far. Plus the Murkenmere messes with them something awful.”

The stout Erl blinked. “Really?”

“Oh, yeah.” Morgaine sighed. “You know, the River Traders worship that thing, right? Well, they aren’t that far off. It’s--I wouldn’t call it a god, or even a Demon, exactly, but there’s some powerful mojo going on there. Real--crazy stuff. I mean, you wouldn’t think it, because it’s just a bunch of water, but…”

“But it’s magic water,” said Palamedes. “Got it.”

Morgaine thought it over, than shrugged. “Ehh. Close enough. And again--it’s a big distance. That complicates things. Even without the Murkenmere’s magic water. So, we’re just going to use the Great Stone Way.” A smile touched the undead Dark Lord’s face. “I’ll say this for you Nerghal, you made kick-ass roads.”

There was a shimmer in the air as her ghostly great-uncle’s head appeared at her shoulder. “Why thank you, Morgaine. It’s good to know that you appreciate me for things besides as a handy servant.”

Morgaine pointed at him. “Hey, don’t get snippy with me. I’d have a right to be pissed with you for the whole messing with my head as a child matter. And that’s before we start the whole bit where you brutally murdered your own kin to seize power.” She crossed her arms. “You’ve got dues to pay. And it’s all your own fault.”

Nerghal gave a suitably sepulchral sigh. “Well put, grand-niece. Well put.”

Palamedes leaned forward. “You know if we aren’t using the Paths, why did you bring him along?” he whispered.

“Like he said, he’s a handy servant, and like I said, he’s got dues to pay,” answered Morgaine. “Besides, I’ve got a bit of a soft spot for the murderous old bastard.”

“I can hear you,” said Nerghal.

“Oh, like I care,” muttered Morgaine. “Again--dues to pay.”

Nerghal grumbled something, and faded from view. Palamedes looked at Morgaine. “Tell me--is the reason you requested me as an aide is that you think I’d be fun to mess with, now that Justinian’s with His Magnificence in Montalban?”

“Pretty much,” agreed Morgaine, with a nod. “But hey--look on the good side--you could be with Nisrioch, enjoying the scenic Screaming Wastes. Yes, sand and scrub grass for miles and miles and miles, with nights punctuated by howling winds, and my elder brother for company.” She looked at him pointedly. “So--glad you’re here now?”

Palamedes thought it over and gave a dull nod.

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