Siege of Baliraan

Author: Silver
Rating: Moderate
Status: In Progress
Preceding: Sword of Namheidbriste
Succeeding: N/A

Chapter I

Aindréas, King of Baliraan, lounged on his throne with a tankard of beer in one hand. He was laughing uproariously at a joke the court jester, who had no name, had told him.

It was the finest time of day: just after noon. This was the time where Aindréas, tired after a hard half-day's governing, would lie and digest his noon meal before settling down for a nap. But not this day.

As soon as Aindréas had settled into that comfortable torpor that comes just before sleep, he was rudely jerked awake by a clamor at the end of his throne room. Guards were tangled every which way, with a small man in leather breeches and a light jacket fighting to get to the king. He held a scroll in his hand, the edges damaged by water and wind.

"Stop! Stop!" the good king roared. "Let the messenger come free!" The guards, slightly undisciplined as always, extricated themselves from the knot. With helmets askew, they returned to position as the messenger dashed up the throne room toward Aindréas.

He came to a halt, gasping, at the golden throne of the Great King of Baliraan. The court jester stood respectfully to the side, disappearing behind a purple curtain.

As the messenger regained his breath, hands on knees, Aindréas stood on his throne. It was a difficult ordeal; the good king was rather plump from years of feasting.

Finally, the messenger spoke. "I have news! I have news!" he cried.

Aindréas sighed. This messenger was undisciplined: a good one would report the news quickly, with no announcements.

The messenger continued, "The men of the kingdom of Taoitim have attacked! They are rampaging through the countryside, killing all in their path."

Aindréas sighed, disappointed that he wasn't about to get his nap. "Well then, we will muster twenty guards to stand by the entrances to the kingdom. Guards, send this messenger back to -"

"Midland," the messenger supplied. He was dragged out of the throne room rather bodily.

Aindréas sighed. The messenger was obviously exaggerating. There was no way the peaceful fishermen of Taoitim had mustered a dangerous force. More likely just some angry fishermen who ran into the next village over. There was no need to worry.

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