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    Yeoldebard
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Stolen Dreams - 2. Deals

ELIAS

 

Dust filled the air as horses walked along the South Rostland Road. Twenty eight people travelled together, spread out over a long trail, and their mounts laboured noisily, nickering softly to each other as hooves clomped over the hard packed dirt.

Elias rode beside a tall human at the head of the company, stealing the occasional glance at the captain of the Rostland Wolves, the band of mercenaries Jamandi Aldori had purchased to help cleanse the stolen lands. Kesten Garess was clad in plate armour even on the road. Elias wasn’t sure the armour was necessary, and besides, it hid far too much of the man’s muscles. His face was handsome, and his eyes held a keen wisdom to them, well suited to months of campaigning.

Amethyst rode beside Kesten, her voice low as she conversed with the man. She seemed to have leapt into the leader’s position in the three days they’d already been riding, and Elias was grateful for that. At least it meant Hope wouldn’t be leading them.

“I’m not that bad of a person, you know.”

The tiefling’s voice startled him, Elias’ head snapping around to find the beastbrood swaying on his own horse. The animals were a loan from Kesten, to be given back once they reached the trading post, and Elias found that moment couldn’t come fast enough.

“I don’t think you’re a bad person,” he spoke up. “Just a little unstable, even by my standards.”

“Ah, because we should trust the standards of an amurrun who mixes rum with black powder just because he’s curious.”

“Hey, I was trying to make an explosion that time!” Elias protested. “Besides, it didn’t burn that bad…”

His eyes narrowed suddenly, a scowl breaking across his face.

“Wait… you were just guessing, weren’t you?”

“And guessed right,” Hope smirked. “We should be reaching the post soon. Keep your head up; there’s going to be plenty of explosions in the near future for you.”

“We can only hope,” Ilyas spoke up. “Legends aren’t told of the distance travelled, they’re told of the bold action taken.”

“What about the Qadiran Ocean of Fire? A thousand mile race through the desert?” Elias asked.

“Ridiculous,” Ilyas scoffed. “The Qadirian Crown is only a hundred miles of desert, for a purse of a thousand dinar, plus whatever bets the racers made beforehand.”

“Still, they are legends told about riding great distances,” Elias pointed out. “It would be like racing from Restov to… wherever the fuck we’re going.”

“Pshaw, hardly. This weather is cold, moist. You can still see snow on the ground,” Ilyas scoffed, pointing to small drifts on the side of the road. “The Qadiran Crown is endurance through the harshest terrain. Racing this road would be a boon to Qadiran riders, even with the potholes that run along it.”

“Eh, it beats the Katapesh summers,” Elias shrugged. “You’re lucky if you die of dehydration or the heat there. If the gnolls get you…”

He shuddered at the thought.

“Seelah is from Katapesh. Best paladin in existence, if you ask me,” Hope said. “Though I’m not sure where she is at the moment. Maybe she made it to Mendev already… if that’s the lore we’re going with here… Elias, did you ever meet up with Amnor Sen in Absalom?”

The amurrun frowned at the tiefling, hair puffed out in alarm.

“How do you know Amnor Sen?”

“How do I know anything?” Hope shrugged. “Okay, so Lapis never became Baron in this timeline, that’s Amethyst’s job instead. Is he still in Osirion? Or does he not exist? Ooh, it would be cool if he was part of the group that goes to Mendev. Though I’m not sure he’d make a good crusader… Okay, a party of Amnor Sen, Krem, Lapis, Faes, Kiba… and try the cleric of Shelyn for healing? Might be something to think about. Oh wait, but Kiba is from the Old Sycamore… eh, I’m sure you’ll figure it out…”

“Hope, you’re being weird again,” Elias frowned.

“Always,” the tiefling smirked. “You’ll get used to it.”

“Okay…” Elias said dubiously. “But what about Ramiel and Wulfrin? We still have no idea where they’re from.”

“Isger for Ramiel. Citadel Duyin, I think?” Hope said.

“Dinyar,” the armiger growled from his horse. “In the Aspodell Mountains. Beautiful place, unspoiled by the chaos that so often marrs nature.”

“I miss Isger sometimes,” Wulfrin mentioned. “I grew up during the Goblinblood Wars, in Umok near the Chitterwood. My mentor saved our town, and convinced me to take up the glaive for good, teaching me to use my talents to save lives. I travel the lands so I can bring not just law and justice, but art to those who need a more spiritual guide.”

“And how are you with killing?” Hope asked pointedly.

“Amnor Sen was a paladin of Shelyn, and he claimed to never have taken a life, even while travelling with my father,” Elias agreed. “But we’re fighting bandits. Can you be trusted to do what is needed?”

“Where my blade passes, the chance for beauty in the world is diminished. Yet I may do so if, through death, the world can be made brighter,” Wulfrin said. “Even in a single church, there can be multiple ways of following a deity’s tenets. This Amnor Sen took his vows literally. I see mine more… metaphorically, I suppose. If I kill a sentient being, but I create a piece of art that can encompass their life, then I have made the world a little brighter. Yet I do not desire to kill those who can be redeemed. It is a value my goddess shares with Sarenrae.”

A sudden smirk crossed the gnome’s face.

“But if someone comes after me looking for a fight, you can bet I will make them eat dust.”

“We’ve been given a charter. ‘The carrier of this charter should also strive against banditry and other unlawful behavior to be encountered. The punishment for unrepentant banditry remains, as always, execution by sword or rope’,” Hope recited from memory. “I suppose that means we’ll have to pick up a sword somewhere. Unless Amethyst still has her rope.”

“As long as I don’t have to kill everyone with Yona,” Elias shrugged. “She’s an expensive lady.”

“Oh come on, Amethyst probably spends more money on arrows than you do on powder,” Hope scoffed.

“But it isn’t just powder, it’s the shot too,” Elias denied.

His eyes lit up as they rounded a corner, taking in the solid wooden palisade that stood as a tall defense against bandits and wildlife. The catfolk’s eyes fell at the sight of a group of bandits pushing a man to the ground just inside the gates, barely fifty feet away.

“Well Yona, best get busy,” he muttered, sliding off his horse and pulling his musket out of the saddlebag.

 

RAMIEL

 

The toe of his shoe dug a small pentacle into the dirt as the rest of the company dismounted. A sprinkle of sulfur and silver entered the symbol, a drop of blood splashing the dirt, and Ramiel called out, his voice echoing as he summoned his servant.

“Abapad of the Hidden Flame, Ramiel requires your aid. Find your way to the blood of the righteous, and take up arms to protect the one you serve.”

Black fire erupted from the circle, dissipating quickly as a tall elf in a shining black breastplate stared down at the aasimar. A claw was etched in his chest, glowing with the gold of a Lictor of the Godclaw. In his hand, he held a morningstar, a shield set on his arm to protect himself from his foes. A helm covered his head, claw crest running down the faceplate, and a sneer could be seen on his face.

“Do you remember the price of servitude?” he boomed through the helm.

Ramiel’s gut twisted, anger taking his mind. How dare the devil take this form, bear the armour of those greater than him? It was an insult, and he would not take it lightly.

“I remember,” he snarled at Abapad. “Fulfill your duties. Slay the bandits.”

His hand pointed toward the gates of the trading post, and the devil turned. He marched into battle, Ramiel hurrying after him as the rest of the mercenary company stared after him.

A sudden explosion brought the armiger to a halt. One of the bandits fell back, their head caved in, and Ramiel looked over his shoulder at a catfolk obscured by white smoke. Elias was pushing his knife against the end of the smoking staff, a steely glint in the catfolk’s eye. As Ramiel watched, the catfolk levelled his weapon like a spear and raced forward with a bellowing warcry, closing the fifty feet between himself and the bandits with surprising speed.

The sound of a cork pulling from a bottle broke the stunned silence, and one of the bandits gulped down a potion, vanishing into the late afternoon as the remaining two bandits turned to flee the devil and the crazed catfolk bearing down on them.

They died as cowards, falling beside their companion, and Ramiel set his morningstar back on his hip, steeling himself for what was to follow. The longer Abapad was out, the worse the aftermath was, but he couldn’t dismiss the devil yet. Not until Abapad had been… paid for his service.

Already, the devil had stripped the corpses of anything valuable, leaving them in their smallclothes. The man that had been pushed around by the bandits glowered at the armoured being as the rest of the company finally approached. Ilyas and Hope led several horses behind them, empty sacks placed in the saddlebags.

“Well, we have horses,” Hope said, patting the neck of a Taldor Jennet.

“You have pets. I have a horse,” Ilyas scoffed, looking over at a proud silver horse.

Ramiel rolled his eyes, approaching Amethyst as she spoke with a person he could only assume was the owner of the trading post.

“That woman is certain to tell the Stag Lord,” the man grumbled, waving a fly away from his bald head. “They came for taxes this time. Next time it will be for treason.”

He spat on the ground.

“We’ll take care of anyone they send,” Amethyst promised. “You have nothing to fear from bandits.”

“Absolutely. I’d love to get my hands on some more loot,” Abapad said suddenly, dumping a bunch of armour on the ground beside the trio. “Hey trader, how much for this armour?”

Ramiel turned on the devil, a scowl on his face.

“That would be your payment-”

“Oh no, it’s an increase to my payment,” Abapad leered through his helm. “The gold goes to you. And you pay me back per our agreement.”

“Is money really that important right now?” Amethyst frowned. “I think we should focus on defending the post. When would they attack?”

“Two days, at most,” Oleg sighed.

“They’ll come with an army if they come at all,” Ramiel said. “We need a way to defend the post before they get here. Do you have any bear traps?”

“I might have some things laying around,” Oleg shrugged. “I do have a few vials of alchemist fire-”

“Alchemist fire? We could attach that to the gates, and then shoot the vials,” Elias said excitedly.

“Are you trying to burn down my post?!”

“Not at all. If we put up a fireback right next to the pots, it would keep the worst of the flames away from the wood,” the catfolk said confidently. “The trick is getting the bandits not to think about the random iron fitted against the wood.”

“Well… I suppose that would work,” Oleg said slowly. “Yeah… and I’ll even take the shot myself. I used to be pretty good with a crossbow back in the day.”

It wasn’t the worst plan, Ramiel supposed. But it would need a lot of help. And he needed to find an excuse to vanish anyway.

“Captain Garess said he’ll be protecting your post from the worst of the bandits while we search out their camps,” Amethyst added.

“If I may take my leave, Abapad and I will search for other ways to defend the post,” Ramiel spoke up.

“Of course. But if you damage anything, you’re paying for it,” Oleg said sharply. “And if you need accomodations, talk to my wife, Svetlana. She’ll show you to the bedroom, though we only have an open room for travellers to share.”

Ramiel’s eyes were already searching for a relatively hidden spot. He needed to deal with Abapad, sooner rather than later.

“I’ll be sure to ask about it,” he nodded. “Excuse me.”

He left the busy yard in front of the trading post, moving toward the north end of the walled complex. Ducking into a stable, the aasimar turned to glare at the devil who had followed him.

“Remove your armour,” he growled.

Abapad obeyed without comment, revealing an elven body, thin and hairless. Ramiel looked at the devil in a mixture of disgust and desire. How often had he wished to be normal, to have regular elven heritage, instead of the agathion blood he’d been “blessed” with?

His hand reached down, grasping the devil’s length. Slow, long strokes ran over Abapad’s dick, Ramiel knowing that trying to speed the process would only make it take longer.

The devil leaned back against the wall of the stable, staring at a pair of horses that were watching the proceedings.

“And here I thought you didn’t want an audience,” he smirked. “Are those your brothers?”

Ramiel gritted his teeth, adjusting his stroke. A gentle twist brought a moan to Abapad’s throat, a stilled cry that never escaped his maw. Their contract forbade any attempt to reveal what Ramiel did for power, what he was forced to do to cleanse the blood of outsiders from himself.

Slowly, the aasimar was corrupting himself, evil leeching into his soul. And Ramiel watched it grow with a calculating eye. One day, his contract with Abapad would end. He would no longer need the devil. On that day, he would defeat the devil in single combat, and would finally be accepted as a hellknight. Until then, Ramiel was forced to pleasure the devil, in payment for his services.

He did not think about the pleasure he received from this. If he thought about it, then Abapad would be winning, would be corrupting him far too fast. No, Hellknights had iron will, and his will was strong enough to beat the devil.

His strokes increased slowly, a slender finger reaching down to run along the crease in the devil’s sack. Abapad’s body trembled, and he leaned back, using the wall to support himself. Knees shaking, his teeth biting his lip to keep from crying out, Abapad released suddenly, black semen splurting over Ramiel’s hand. The devil’s length twitched in Ramiel’s grip, the aasimar stroking a couple more times before remembering himself.

Dropping the pulsing dick quickly, Ramiel wiped his hand off on the wall. Abapad suddenly grabbed the aasimar’s hand, a long tongue running over the remnants of his seed. Ramiel pulled his hand away, fixing a look of disgust on his face.

“I release you. Return to your demesne, Abapad of the Hidden Flame.”

“As you wish,” the devil smirked. “Enjoy your day.”

A pillar of black flame engulfed the devil amid the screams of the terrified horses, and Ramiel’s eidolon vanished, banished back to hell. The aasimar let out a long sigh, leaning against the wall as he recovered from the encounter. He knew he would need the devil again before the week was out.

Copyright © 2021 Yeoldebard; All Rights Reserved.
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So how exactly an aspiring Hellknight gets a contract with a devil he is supposed to fight? Is that even legal? 😅

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2 hours ago, IkeNeko said:

So how exactly an aspiring Hellknight gets a contract with a devil he is supposed to fight? Is that even legal? 😅

That's an interesting one. Basically, Ramiel asked the universe for someone to help him become a hellknight (the absolute fool!) and Abapad was like, SCORE! One convoluted contract later, and now he has a demon who will grow with him, ensuring that whenever he does take the Test, he has a devil that he can fight to become a hellknight legally. It's legit, and been approved by the higher ups in the order, though they are unaware of the contract... ahem... "details".

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On 10/19/2021 at 3:26 AM, Yeoldebard said:

That's an interesting one. Basically, Ramiel asked the universe for someone to help him become a hellknight (the absolute fool!) and Abapad was like, SCORE! One convoluted contract later, and now he has a demon who will grow with him, ensuring that whenever he does take the Test, he has a devil that he can fight to become a hellknight legally. It's legit, and been approved by the higher ups in the order, though they are unaware of the contract... ahem... "details".

Does the contract say “please be gentle during the test”? 
Also, after Ramiel defeats him, it’s the end of their beautiful “friendship”? 

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4 hours ago, IkeNeko said:

Does the contract say “please be gentle during the test”? 
Also, after Ramiel defeats him, it’s the end of their beautiful “friendship”? 

As long as both parties still have use for each other, I'm sure their contract will be continuing for a long time.

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3 hours ago, Yeoldebard said:

As long as both parties still have use for each other, I'm sure their contract will be continuing for a long time.

And that’s legal too? Even after Ramiel becomes a hellknight? 

Edited by IkeNeko
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44 minutes ago, IkeNeko said:

And that’s legal too? Even after Ramiel becomes a hellknight? 

Oh absolutely. Hellknights are all about using the letter of the law to their advantage, and regularly use devils to aid their goal of an orderly world.

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6 hours ago, Yeoldebard said:

Oh absolutely. Hellknights are all about using the letter of the law to their advantage, and regularly use devils to aid their goal of an orderly world.

I like them even more now ❤️

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