Hera watched them from afar, a thundering mass of wild men mounted upon dusty horses, a horde of barbarian cavalry men, in their thousands. The heavy hooves rumbling the ground for miles around as they made their steady way through DeepWood Forest.
On tow, a caravan of wagons carrying supplies, materials, arms… These were war men set up to break camp upon command, self sufficient, trained warriors, hardy survivors.
It was impossible to conclude upon their motives or what their course of action would be… They passed under The Shadow Order, as Indigo and her troops traveled the forest by the tall branches. The extent of their number was terrifying, yet they passed hamlets and village without harassment. Pausing only a few times to collect fresh water for their mounts. Indigo noted, they always asked, when a force that size could demand, could take without any resistance. They always asked, always tending to their beasts first and always left an offering at well or spring. Traditionally, this was a platted length of mane, sometimes woven with the riders own locks. Or fruit… Hera too noticed the respect the wild men had for the old ways and approved. Yet she also held fear and apprehension deep in her soul, these men could mark a sincere turning point in events within the story.
Brynn traded two sheep in exchange for the warriors aid to rebuild her tumble down shack. It was a bold move to approach the men, to engage in conversation. To bargain and banter, though it paid off, for she spoke not of any war or struggles. She kept the exchange light hearted, with her usual casual attitude. Before two days past, her shelter was weather proof and they dined on fresh roasted lamb together.
With the barbarians traveled a woman Kaxa, from the far South, loyal concubine and mate of their leader. A giant beast of a man, near seven foot tall with long strong arms. Heavily scarred, some from war, some self inflicted in intricate patterns across his board chest. He was a silent character, always watching, always calculating. He was simply known as Grave and he treated his woman like a Goddess.
Together Grave and Kaxa lead their horde towards the capital city, an impressive sight to behold, yet they did not enter the city gates, they camped outside the walls and there they waited… This mighty silent force, paused awaiting … no one knew what the next steps would be… anticipation gripped those who witnessed the arrival of this force and even your humble narrator isn’t sure what she’s going to write next…
(No idea where the picture came from originally, possibly Facebook – apologies I’m unable to properly credit an image source)
Anne Harrison 12.03.17