30 October 2011

Merlin 2:19 The Saracen Empress

Merlin 2:19 “The Saracen Empress”

The sin and sacrifice is worth without use, the worst of worthless withal, wherewithal pensive recompense intense to fray forayed thru present tense into the tenets of penury foraged for naught but successfully reckless abandon in the midland. The dregs of society have virtue in their blood and sweat on their brow, just as wives tend to sows there are men to guide the plows in the fields, and from the rows where the crop grows a forest to foliage for the fowl and fawn, royal and of utmost regency in the realm. In passing a covetous spell hastily cast has to and fro come and gone disparate to magic of instance, insomuch, saving the fields from fire offended the cumbersome manna, which endeavors henceforth Merlin’s retirement a slighted recovery all the same.

For this the myriad wizard wears a pointed hat with the garret hanging toward his nape accompanying a wide soft brim around his head that hides his eyes of countenance and exhaustion. Slouched and low in the saddle he rustles with the slow gait of the horse, both with little more than flighty instinct.

More endeavoring is the pert Troy, a skin of white taught of leather drawn and dried over bones and borne, without stitch or seam or wrinkle betwixt the outmost, an utmost zeal skeins of vitriol and vitality, he walks without tiring pace for pace with the others who are mounted upon trusty steed. Fade does every quarrel of party and perception around the binary fixture that are the couple betrothing, an invincible candle and a tawdry firebrand. The phoenix remains unnamed the same, playful and irreverent with obedient dissonance for whitened Troy as its master and furtive with Ana’s tarry of torrid fiery avocations, a luck of haste by fate that the gallant bird ever quite larger than the days prior often does not eat even the slightest scraps, unfettered by reluctance if ushered, but the flora grows without patience in its valiant presence.

Complicit to the growth of any plant asunder heavens rays of days with nights that rain, as well complains and squawks in feign, complete to nourish, for the meals are scarce at summer’s nigh wry, with respect to the cats and the crows pillaging their prey the dark is growing most and the days are not in the autumn effect.

In the distance thru the tallest shadow spires and the most golden sunlight desires an axe canst be heard with concatenate echoes explicably drawing attention, a clearing in the tallest trees, a distant morning star becomes the breeze that beacons brightly heavy over this forest of conifer, without other tree once removed a hearty man chops a tree felled by time.

Merlin: “How do you do?”
Woodsman: “How do you do.”
Merlin: “How goes you by your town lad?”
Woodsman: “Oh…keen ’bout a league by steed or three by feet of your pale friend, the path is old and the steps are new.”

The woodsman leers with his hand over his eyes to block the sun as he leans to better see Troy, hiding in his hood in this foreign wood.

Nick: “Wherefore this log, canst thou spy a forest for the trees?”
Woodsman: “Better practice heretofore not a lattice, thence of better roots, by order this kindred kindling.”
Ana: “To thence your town?”
Woodsman: “Yon,” he begins to point “over…damnation!”

The woodsman in happenstance has made his glance an awestruck poring, spotting the phoenix tall as he in the distance smaller, yet formidable by dearth of muscular poise. Differently displayed concerned of contempt, an avid bloody fire with gleaming orange now radiates not, a smoldering ash color with raven afterfeather down, fill mix of river clay and nightshade, protection from the predator armies that can see in color.

Troy: “…It doesn’t like you to stare.”
Woodsman: “A thousand apologies, my task is errand a felled tree to fuel the fete, unbeknownst ignorance my lieges.”
Merlin: “Good a party.”
Woodsman: “I hadn’t thought more than whit, waiting for the wagons, seemed thee only foreigners.”
Ana: “Where is the castle boy!?”
Woodsman: “Yon two creeks often straight ere the way, on right the river path the same cathedral.”
Merlin: “Very good, elder.”
Woodsman: “By your leave your graces.”

The woodsman bows as they slowly walk anew toward forward through the clearing into the woods again and with what they trek toward the beaten path, Merlin still low brow in the sunset but ad caveat his affluence, a gold coin tossed with a sound of spin against his thumbnail in the cusp of the wind lands in the tall glade grass. In the deep of forest they witness measure of the old ways, with crudity athwart the border’s edge the actions of an old religion has put decedents in the trees, wise of their wit to worship the crows that warn of the need to repel borders.

A town nearing city size surrounds a castle without high wall, years of encampment built upon it surround, a suffrage nonetheless practical of commerce between the cathedral and the lands, capital gains have escaped only descent paths, any affront on the bastion would need to first navigate the jagged town roads that surround a fanciful fortitude. Daggers of arrows and hammers of axes thwart innate serene dexterity with tabular and flank confrontation, but in silence and inaction, the town is near vacant lest to task without cede, scallions and drunkards remnant due to the elsewhere wedding ceremony. For at this very moment the Saracen witch Etain, called upon by name Eden under fiat has just married King Ragnar son of Roeke, for this to which they stand upon the outward balcony of the high court in praise and appraisal of love’s revival over most lavishly coiffed subjects celebratory among the festivities, festooned with joyous resolve. A slight of the pastures as they turn inside for their preparations before the gala, in the fields at the trees by the passing time Merlin and the wayward others travail good speed, unseen by the newly crowned Saracen empress.

The rote commencement is an eschewing temporal behavior as a young display of dandy patriotism, a field of political neophytes and perennial succors resenting contest of elitism socializing with each other.

Merlin: “The old youthful tiresome rouse.”
Ana: “But Merle, you’re young!”

In a grand hall for the purpose of festivities he turns-about, the mirrors on the heavy doors reveal potency from the days of potion and rest, his beard gone, his hair short, observing the treasures of gold and gems as so many bricks and pebbles, looking upon the finest silken robes as tattered rags, he shakes himself from his wayfarer garb. What falls to the floor is a stipend of fashion, turned invective less than a modicum he wears a white cloth attire befit the enterprise of his youth, the seams and hems leather unintentionally, a remnant of his haste.

Posterior hokum finds him brushing the strips clean of his clothes, in prideful artifice magically pulling a glass of Chardonnay from the shadows behind his back and a rose from behind his hand, swooning the first unattended maiden he might chat and flirt, she takes the glass from him, drinks it, and throws it to the floor his whisper randy enough to make her blush, he tosses the flower to the floor as they begin an intimacy that would probably make the nearby children blush if the scene were not grandiose with dancing and festivities in the homiletic concerted fete, too fast to enjoy the accord or perish the thought, as they are lifted and drift into the tall curtains of the balcony. Late arriving, Troy enters dressed as ever the same but without the burlap, staunchly resembling a tenured baron whom at first site each distal servant brings him salver upon drinks resting to be his sate. He passes through them eager to drink, feast, and jest.

Nick: “Coat room?”
Ana: “Cloak room.”
Nick: “We need coats for the next trick.”
Ana: “Aye love.”

The servants are young and strong, soldiers of the realm as spies of the event in servant disguise, the ink beneath their skin looks as vines and leaves of myrtle peering over collars and sleeves. The lush inebriation of debasement proper to the personations of deputation, it were scruple leavened into privy vehement resulting in the exeunt of drunkard hast warrant when their shoes slip the floor in steps that their minds hath not made. A life of promiscuity of ideals, the dolorous old maids and nubile lasses, of kings and townies and tapsters surfeit, stupendous drinking in the face of the very law decreed in the cathedral paces beyond the hall as if it were the zodiac year’s eve of Hallowmas. As the generations soak the sin, biting laws athwart, strike and gall the constituents of evil votaries shouting ‘ho’ and ‘huzzah’, in the presence of the prioress. Essayed, justly storming into solitude, foist assays in parcel bawd, varlets, varmint and vermin, question of drabs that are in low service to the king.

A sleek and suspicious lot whom forego unknowing as to his knights are not the best of liked by the servants. The anger shows itself to Ana and Nickolas who cannot intervene at first sighting. Approach them to the cloak room, in passing by the gift hall, knave knights with buckler swords and halberds block the doors to priories and private abode and servants approach them to seek their gifts so that they may place them, upon receive gracefully amended to the collection.

Knave: “His majesty is glad to have your presence.”
Nick: “Without doubt I’m sure, just are we to have been so well received.”

The servant stands in leering wait, without adieu but amassing swallowed reluctance Nickolas pilfers his own vestment for his silver.

Nick: “I’ve given him my third cousin’s land, but since I love him so, you can toss this to the lot.”
Ana: “Ever the prosperous yet generous my lord.”
Knave: “Excellent sir.”
Nick: “We’ve lost the guest room good boy.”
Knave: “That way sir passed the cloak room.”

The couple departs, leaving unbearably fashionable with Nickolas, a better of fair weather thieves, needing consolation for posthumous donation, behind them the knave peeks into the pouch to see the silver only to stop by fear when one of the guards puts his hand to his sword and scornfully shakes his head. To the cloakroom they go and at arrival ask from the door for the largest fur coats in the room, when questioned Nickolas hops the half-door and takes to threat by knife and neck, insisting upon compliance that she be given her coat first, than he of delayed modest selection. It is off for them in elusive retreat to private quarters.

Entreat anent by the queen’s hap, as inked servants attend the guests in slacking primness, Etain acts not as the convulsive involuntary startling of a surprised person, but a despondent listless queen excellently blending into a scene where lieges often seem disappointed by luxury and condescending without their fascinations.  Drinks a plenty the floor if full of talkers and quibblers, the paths to the recesses of the gala are rank with patronage, and the balcony set full of the royals enthralled by factitious cares and superfluously coarse labors of fete, consumed by haste in effort to prove they have never learned what pride is. The servile minions are too busy to talk poring and pouring as ardent support who in the benefit of doubt initiated recruitment of sociable interests with cordials, delicate handling thus tender treatment whetted slough.

King: “Lest there be another desire of yours I would like to make a toast.”
Etain: “As if you could kill time without injuring eternity my love."

Etain smiles and offers her hand to his and rises to put an arm around his front and the other behind him and stands with him as they approach the balcony. The distant thoughts and meditations are interrupted moments before the king takes to the balcony, magic candles that cannot expire by slow gusts of wind and the potion of concoction full of charm he sermons a melody of hill and dale.

King: “Hardly so well, the worlds of ages, nay, repentant an irresistible voice inviting into the shadows…” a silence calms the crowd, “on alert nigh, reverencing amassed spectacle, trouble and anxiety through the midst of an outlying civilization is a gross misconception, had there been a need for improvements to this kingdom I would not have wed Etain, whose love beckons me as her beauty slays me,” he admires her for a moment, “and now I ask you to drink to the health of the Queen.”

Etain with a respect for modesty bows courteously to the crowd, which greatly pleases them, she joins him close at the railing with her hand beneath his, a confusing look of pity and pithy crosses her face as he begins to speak.

King: “We must enjoy these times afforded to those who destroy the savageness poverty philosophy would not fend for life and not till, impurity usurped by our hardiness, which I’m sure our intellect is wont to complain as the night ensues, but you are my guests, we need music for these festivities to continue!”

At the first note wherefore the music resumes the gala rejoices and cheers of ‘huzzah’ goes once around from his knights, and the robust joy fills the walls while the balcony holds the first dance of newlyweds. Courtiers and kinships of mere conformity, possibly the progenitors of a nobler race enervates the rich food, the grandeur of splendid ornament, finer and more abundant lavish rags than the wedding dresses of pagans, numerous intrepid fires and incessant superfluities of a gauche toil and pillage. The fruit below heaven in the air and light, golden on the autumn afternoon and warm within the hall, esculents dross thus confined of magnificent and costly bonds and lash, pardoned obscurities and subtle infirmities that match the enterprises of tyrants and young maidens assisted the colloquialism circumspect by this new advantage of the state that holds a reluctant place in hearts of fealty.

A castle of courtesy and collegians promenade as Merlin and the dame caress in the field, eating fruits, chatting and peeling layers with few cares. The moonlight is high and the fire low while the quiet night air surrounds the castle through which the windows reveal all, their wealth having sold interest to themselves watched by their inevitable demise. Intelligence reports of the public are surely sewn, the city dwellers are at the fest being watched by the servants or sleeping in the city under guard of their fellows. The manna dissolved in the day’s sun fills the air and fuels the fires, unrelievedly in parity she dances appearing happy as a charlatan leader of a violent caste, a jovial clan from moonlit bravery of plundering raids through the countryside for many twelvemonths, the thoughts of which flash Etain’s mind. She dances in whimsical patterns of dissident dismay as her beastly counterparts in black ties and trimmed attires are draped in flattened wear carrying horderves with sharply flat wares close beneath their bodice, tattoos beneath their hair almost blending into pitch nature.

Areal barbarous adversaries are many in numbers and growing impatient, covered in cape or gown, and leather ties as seems of lively armor, wicked wielders fortified in primal fear, in turn formerly almost solely time in eternity yearning boughs of fortune, suspicious eyes for vicious lies. The servants watching at the cadre of breathtaking soldiers of fortune, born in the years of earned hated by the keepers of hollow ground, the temporary luster of cadence and riddles weighing heavy on the hearts of insurrection. Fury and disgrace masked by ceremonies of cant and wont indelibility’s mercantilism. In the fields where shepherds foster and fields prosper, lodging in the field watching nothing of the night that ravens often gather and have upon a separate yore, with something odd afoot it is not likely. Inner solemnity of all saints rests with better faction pedantically anent their impatience. 

A wall curves toward the main floor holding embraced banisters of two stairways lee to the balcony that addresses beyond the king’s quarters, from there the effeminate wives and surly yeomen occupy couches and sofas, drinking private reserves of scotch and other blends, adorned by clothes brightly soaked in blood, lavender, honey, and jade.

And so with the pronouncements of civilization and society combined on this day of days approaches Milton, behind him follows Claus and Ryan.

Claus: “We must make them by this.”
Milton: “There are spies among tonight’s audience.”
Ragnar: “Then bring them to my quarters.”

King Ragnar clumsily spilled red wine as his cup hit the leather map on the oak ring cut table.

Ryan: “I’m afraid there are too many to compel, my liege.”
Ragnar: “You’re surely saying that you cannot make them purchase the campaign.”

The lieutenant royalist’s pauses fill of apprehensions as the regent king twists to serve his thirst uninhibited by full sobriety.

Ragnar: “Platitudes if ever…with even a few violent ragtag still out there, it is unfounded in principle?”
Clause: “It bears certain that two small ones where I list between here and Celadon, had come to see tither who is here hard by, and I have felled them in the shadows, here they carried these sod awful potato daggers.”

Ragnar gave his kingly duty to overtly fight the danger, he gracefully pointed to another place on the map for his royal mercenary guards in the room in the brisk shadow silence.

Ragnar: “I wish to try not getting between people and their principles,” he speaks with his finger on a path from the map, “then we will make them another way both sides like heavy flank, Royce have them show you from the tower side, and I will slay from the chapel.”

The leader of the private guard motioned, and the sentries in the room hustle and tighten their gauntlets as the door closes, instantly the silence was shaking with intensity light the avid lightning caught fettered in mist. The kings flak jacket adorned the voice of Etain speaks to him as he takes up his sword.

Etain: “You’ll learn of the error of your false reality!”
Ragnar: “Nonsense my love, they will be forcibly removed through the large doors,” his sleeves into leather riding armor, “so that their coward allies waiting in the fields will see them in the trees and you will go to safety. I will be fine and return to your salaciously lures of me and my fate.”

Etain snapped her fingers and the sitting servants, young men and women, spousal and obsequious, rise and attack the king’s men only to take the weapons of their victims and turn attentive to Ragnar. The conspiratorial totalitarian is removed from the scene and put to the reality that lies before him, known are his allies and his foes with only the latter to know reprieve.

Etain: “Walk with me in hell?”
Wynn: “What should we do with him?”

Etain’s fingers flame, noting that she would do her worst and a devilish smile of content. Ere a fall man heretofore ken liken to salvation in his own eyes an old tyrant with truant malevolent spirit had turned a new leaf only to have it burned by the autumn witch, and the king’s trust having betrayed him

Etain: “Mine behest of evil methinks refrain twixt to say lest decry, nor corrupt mine ears, nor desecrate mine eyes to humor zealous vanity.”
Ragnar: “Guard your troves, alas, immortal evils only sleep.”
Etain: “Impious Pharisee, intent to crucify, seeking fresh martyr, and a desperate blamer covered in lavish possession, your moments are now few.”
Ragnar: “Sanctimonious treachery ekes from the mistaken heartlessness of the sinister sedition & occult anarchy, arcane prey waxes sacrifice.”
Etain: “In the shadows of flowers the sunlight is dying.”
Ragnar: “Hemlock will poison thine soul, shadows will damage thine mind…dark matter consumes the firelight, to see the forest for the trees.”
Etain: “Your slaughtering hunting methinks, 'tis reminiscential thence olden Salem witch trials.”

His hope eternal burns in limbo as her treason punishes the warlord deceitfully as she begins citing she slides across the floor as if thin air to block his escape then speaking into his eyes as she drifts to his dismay.

Etain: “Your worthless warmongering, extortion of courage to placate the girthing vassals, for the widows given orphans and fathers made bastards, to what you hoped was the exodus of magic in your persecution.”
Ragnar: “By path of the spirits wild of idle worlds, for you are most wicked feiticeira.”
Etain: “A fire to life guiding these Saracen and a life to fire you were not going to fulfill.”
Ragnar: “…I beseech thanking a thousand times for every deviant bastard slain…bruja…wrach…”

Etain points fingers from each hand to her henchmen Wynn and Jacobi and the others and then to the king, her assassins hold the king’s arms though he struggles in valence, the closed and isolated room with heavy curtains keeping the king from his communists and courtesans asleep or dead in the city, as he pleads she does not listen, but thusly tells him his felony.

Etain: “For you our bid will be death. For your sedition you will forever be shunned in the hearts & halls of the honored fallen, there's no honor among thieves, even if idolaters. Immense power and sinister motive is the only truth of a liar. There is no honor amongst criminals. What good is power if you don't know how to use it?”
Ragnar: “The false society of men, for earthly greatness, all heavenly comforts rarefy to air."
Etain: “What if I were to burn it?”
Ragnar: “But I have created this great palace!”
Etain: “If only it were so easy to create noble men and kings...kill him”

An arrow lets from bow and line into the king but her dagger to open his neck hammered as others hold him, the widowing empress walks and sets afire to all she touches and more out of physical reach, until there is nothing but gasping walls and windows bathed in sacred fire, and then she burns it. Jacobi as archer holds the king’s bow as he walks to the burning curtain, he pulls aside the brazen fabric without worry of fire ever damaging him and he ties a strip of cloth while it burns in his hands, around the arrowhead and fires it from the window into the city. The empirical bloodshed glares illustriously on her face among the growing flames and glaring eyes.

Jacobi: “Something taken is soon earned, spell caster.”

The king lies dead and striving to breathe through the blood and the broken heart, Etain still seems in torpor, her order is a chaos long in the making.

Etain: “The return said and done that relies on this affair…the fires of Saturn share sympathy for our strife…we now burn this depraved hall.”

Her dream is an identity in a fantasy a complicit heresy to reality, oft entreat to gather even then, lower than yon abatement to defeat greed with swathes of irony, the wiles of the libertine's decay on display and reckless henceforth bequeathed of disparately fated path with sickly desire at wit's end transgresses logic, hypocrisy and lunacy by fanatics of a heresy met with contempt found solely anon doth not trace the deepest betrayal. The winds of orison flee this trouble cast on shadows of good deeds and good doers as the servants of haute insurrection begin the pernicious fetch of avocation ignoble and battle dost the arrant knights of errand fealty to the despot in extremity. A powerful lack of wit they fight for regency against a new reign of old rein that knows not how many they fight for freedom.

The chaos begins on the proclivities, as the king’s men who can escape entanglement of the invasion chase Etain but she holds out the palm of her hand and a fire leaps from her hand, an arcane fire skirmishing when Ana finds Etain in the ballroom. Ana an ancient spellbinder is a firebrand, but Etain burns the flammable drinks and explodes every bottle and keg, serving as distraction to escape through the shrapnel and smoke. An abetted soi-disant invective in a sordid approach, a storm with the air of chaos, with one battle cry and one scream from across the room knells the groupthink into panic, the infantile dichotomous thinking cotton to disapprobation. Only tyranny grows in the passages of blood, the children more so to escape as their parents in conservative measures are felled as martyrs consigned to share the king’s fate.

Troy has been outside on a bet for coin tosses by the stables, which proved a fight of drunken men fortunately he has won and now drinks comradely with both the spies and liars. In the reaped fields where corn once stood Halle passes, her aura frightens the stately phoenix as she goes unnoticed, passing hidden behind things of stables and boarded walls through the fodder. As Troy jovially rejoices the master of ceremonies, he and his phoenix friend have an articulation beyond deciphering but visibly warm and cordial but the slight ovum of ash, as any rider would embellish their fond steed. Acquainted with disaster the insurgent ones hold the conversation by fascinatedly tethered fetters of a solemn grave yard shadow that walks the night earth. The signal of the fiery massacre brings about allies contaminating with deeds of darkness, expiating threnodies of secrecy, and thence their movement circumvents the castle perimeter to the stables whilst two Saracen soldiers approach steadfast.

Sol: “Transgressions of variety and common dwelling, kill your way to the king the final battle ensues.”

A permanent choir of melancholy desperate to teeth upon Troy, the dying moans of relic mortality are soon beholden to the battle mortification that succumb where soon only children will play, a scene of storm and weather in the distant dark night clouds ensigns the baying torture of invasion, the angry blades slay him in the full moon. The lauding disconsolate subordinates of chorus lament of either posterity or prose until largely loud enough in unison to invite the fears of the black forest, the unrepentant spirits wassailing outreach their breaths and gasping hold quorum, the festal journeyers of mirth as the terrible night winds howl whence fang and fervor finish to distend their paunches.

Sol: “Sweet intoxication never comes to drown the memory of the past.”

A once dead Troy raises to raze as an alder manic whose heart bleeds for edelweiss but not for short blades of terrorists, his eyes quaff the drought of dying, and a clarion thought holds as the clinic agrees with brave settler Troy walking determinately, as the spies of the invaders having slayed the knights have turned to Nickolas just as it is too late, a vengeful demonian treads staunchly as if his knees do not bend as swiftly he walks across the hay and puts the three surviving mercenaries low.

Halle paces the streets looking for indigence or luxury she stops to assess the greater details from a wiser distance before scarred hobo inasmuch oil as tattered rags.

Vagabond: “Neither more nor at the following, that it is said big worshipper of the time than to help you, nor hatred, nor about the following.”

Halle’s magic wields the winter wrath and only the shadows where the vagrant rests pains him ever so, like a dark and open door to the nether realm of cold and misery she turns her eyes to her victim to instill her scornful atrocity as frost aches his bones and blood. An immense cold to overpower even the simplest of faculties, causing early a shivering rage and eventually a deafening silence, precept of apotheosized retinue by the blights of shadows and the sounds of sleepless nights, the publicans flee from Etain’s tender mercies that any loyalist opposition will not afford, the halls covered in such as divans and sunshades, lo is become factitious to bolster the commons and dwelling houses.

Halle: “The prudence so to speak as for rude alas to-night a chilling tale not yet dissolved, the murk all colored dark of mystery saturation, hazy clouded sky commence the winter of man's delights!"

All this as Troy moves toward the ballroom, looking for where the trouble is, Merlin notices people fleeing, he makes his way into the castle, one side anent the next find him suspicious and try to seize him, but with the push of his hand a gust of air knocks them and their wearisome ceremonial garb to the ground, he passes the frozen haggard without noticing. Ana and Nick still yet are frolicking in a room, he in her dress and she in his trousers and overcoat worn backwards, abruptly a guard comes and urges them to take arms and leave the castle.

Knave: “Intruders purge your safety lord and lady.”
Nickolas: “Dispatch them away and I will soon join you,” says Nick boisterously.
Knave: “…”
Ana: “We had better see what the fuss is…”
Nickolas: “Do you think there’s a dress code?”

On the broadly empty yet body-strewn gala floor Merlin takes the breath from himself trying to cast a wind-spell that does not avert as Nickolas approaches from a dark hallway.

Nick: “Can I tear him down?”
Merlin: “Could you ever!?”

Merlin slips into a doorway as Nick fights a descent battle torrential at the lummox’s size. In the madness the lummox cuts down a palace loyalist with a large blade by one blow, though Nickolas achieves retributive justice at the lumberman soldier. There by the end of blows the stray servants are helping the giant man assay for the Saracen queen, not knowing the insurgents are her allies. Blind submission, inability to discuss, images not words more, by the calm there are few of Etain’s soldiers to take the castle, and fewer to defend it.

Ana walks a dark hallway dragging the fingers of her right hand on the wall as sparks of flint dance from the paths beneath her nails. In a gaudy overcoat she confronts Saracen warriors who mistake her for one of the debutants and intend to kill her. She has a battling of wits as she subverts them, three in all, one with cunning martial skills by his dagger into his own throat, the other two thwarted with the sword of the first, a flaming sword eventually glows while she fights and strikes through one sword, in a grapple his blade takes his own hand, and through the heart of the second soldier, while reaching forward piercing his chest he falls screaming, just as the other. The blade is red and malformed; she throws it on the handless soldier thoughtlessly, causing burning anguish and discomfort.

Ana: “Lesser men have tried with greater brevity.”

She notices a tattoo of a black rose on more than one of them then goes into the shadows. As Ana turns at the end of the hallway into the next Etain turns into the hallway from the other end, dragging a dagger shedding the same flint sparks approaching the dead or dying soldiers. When they try to speak to her through the bloodily vocals they are condemned, she turns their necks with her boots after sight of the red blade in paranoia.

Etain is in a small hallway toward the corrals when a young knave grabs her wrist, when she resists and coaxes her magical defenses he simply points to Merlin. She sees and the simple boy lets her go, she smiles with blood still on her face then runs quickly from him at her first chance, he passes the yellow boy with an old scar on his young face that drinks a bottle inclined by childish curiosity, but watches Merlin swiftly leave. Guards follow Merlin from the long end of the hall, looking dire to the boy in their passing by irreverently, unwarned they are set alight when the little local boy spills the alcohol, adds a candle to the mix, and runs laughing at them.

The Saracen guards following Merlin are confronted by the sister witch of winter, they do not know Halle from hegemony and wish to do heartless deeds, the first moves to strike her with a fist that she catches and frost burns his forearm, the second she taps on the forehead with her finger leaving a blue spot of extinct skin and a frozen mind causing him to fall dead. She turns the corner to watch Merlin, without the rebels following her. By either intellectual or moral depths she cannot follow him.

Merlin’s mind switches distinctive motives. His new goal is the stockyards and horses to where of swift pursuit and a leap from a window finally confronts Etain, shouting to gain her attention.

Merlin: “One cannot make what belongs to the afterlife happen here and now!”
Etain: “We will fight the heathens, do you remember?”
Merlin: “What creatures have you wrought on Hallows Eve?”
Etain: “Men who shaped the war, to march to terrible music.”
Merlin: “A long war ahead for those who fight them.”
Etain: “Turning point, I see no end or swing of the pendulum.”
Merlin: “The trees and the river, last of the might-have-beens”
Etain: “Keep solitary warlock, I warn you once, we will not cease.”

Nickolas bolts from the corridors and runs towards insurgents blocking the door, jumping to the chest of one, with both hands damning by dagger the one, and again the same a deathblow to the chest of the other.

Etain in magistrate fire approaches to watch the commotion or to battle, as Ana stands overhead at a window soon to join in the familial army of white magic, Nickolas waits for either of them to say something.

Merlin: “She will burn brighter hotter than your lover Nickolas.”
Nickolas: “Aft fewer bright lass have burned me I’ll be still scared of them and, not thee madam.”

When they finish their desultory pause Ana exits the door and joins the commotion, at thence Etain confronts them with a sun-spell and her pointed finger, a fire in the mind that brings a fever to their eyes and forces them all to their knees.

Etain: “There’s nothing wrong with a little bad religion, but when you’re ready, we must survive the day and then the shade.”

A carriage approaches and she enters and flees the maze of battle from the barn cove where the horses are broken in the winter, leaving them soon to be betrayed before their demise, the death in the air strikes distemper to Merlin and Ana, but serves only to suffocate Nickolas temporarily.

Nickolas: “Are you good?”
Merlin: “I was told revenge is best served cold.”
Nickolas: “Trace by steed before too long.”

With that Nick abounds by trusted steed after the Saracen empress, Troy exits the door and helps Merlin and Ana to their feet.

Merlin: “Troy seeks their leader, a woman, follow them bring him back here in one piece.”

Troy puts his hand to the air as though waving for a falcon, and in comes the phoenix with loud squawk in the air before a heavy landing. In vibrant color above the dark sinister colors bleak a prominent show in bright colors, a symbolic hope for a better future are depicted, equality is symbolized by grouped feathers aglow with the darkness and ash a fueling soot for the irradiant embers radiant of white youthful fire.

Troy: “To the victor go the spoils…Alerion!”

He holds the stirrup and brushes the phoenix’s shoulder while slapping the other and leaning as it and the rider vault into the air with a sweeping gust.

Ana: “It’s a rousingly clever name.”
Merlin: “Suffice it to say, let’s hope for more than the namesake.”

The dawn is in the west shedding respite and illuminating the chase along the trail to the vacant checkpoint at the north bridge, and Etain looks aback confused by the refuge and reverence of the hospice to seek the slumber wake. Alongside the wagon two riders, Jacobi and Wynn, accompany the caravan carrying booty and bounty hunters wearing what they could not plunder. The driver speeds but Etain puts her hand to his shoulder and shakes her head, she points her riders to the approaching Nickolas and her equestrians slow the chase to chaste him.