Heya there guys. It's me after such a long time lol! XD Anyway, glad to be back working on Wolfblood again. ;) Ok, I know that it's been ages since I've updated this one, so here's a brief summary of the current plot here in case you guys have forgotten:
Well, ok it started with our hero Reyn Wolfblood who was going to end his adventuring stint at the current moment. There at the town of Greavus, Reyn got involved in an act of vigilancy or valor depending how you see it. Specifically, he saved a girl from being taken advantage by a certain man named Ortoff, making a complete fool out of him as the result.
After that, Reyn checked into a certain inn during which he got involved (again!) into a random fight due to some harassment targeted on the daughter of the owner. Needless to say Reyn owned the opposition.
Meanwhile, Pontes, the mayor heard that Reyn was in the town and he intended to invite him over due to the fact that they used to be adventuring companions. At the same time, he also made sure nothing sudden will happen by exercising his weight onto Ortoff and Rait, who were preparing to deal with our elven dude. Needless to say, it was effective.
In the end, Reyn was found and he was escorted to the mayor's residence where they engaged in some random talk. At the same time however, it was found out that a band of goblins were preparing to invade Greavus and Ortoff, in a bid to gain power, betrayed the town by allying himself with the goblins. It was revealed at that time that Ortoff managed to get a drug that can render the whole town incapacitated. At their agreement, Ortoff would use the drug and when everything was done, he would send a flare as the signal.
Finally, we found out that our much hated baldie managed to employ an assasin to bump off Reyn. Problem for Ortoff: Will everything go according to plan? ;)
Ok, I know the summary is super corny. Hope you guys can forgive me on that. Now with the summary out of the way, let the fun begin!
P.S: Actually, I really enjoyed doing this chapter because I'm able to input a certain depth in Reyn's past here. Do let me know what you guys think of it. :)
Wolfblood – Chapter 6: Within The Mind
Reyn surveyed his room with a bit of amusement. He had never been lodged into a room as luxurious as the one Pontes arranged for him. To him, it was pretty much obvious that the rich could do tons of stuff just to make the guest feel at home. In fact, his home back in Selaysnia wasn't half as posh compared to the scene before him.
The room was quite spacious to be exact. A single person bed was situated adjacent to the main window with a fairly big wardrobe at the other end. Opposite the window was a table with a mirror attached to it. On the walls were paintings of different kinds plus a single shelf stacked with books for leisure beside the spot where he was standing. Finally, a room for bathing was situated beside the mirror- table.
Way too posh to get used to...
This thought was evident in Reyn's mind as he started towards the bed, curious to find out any potential difference between the beds he had slept in the past and the current one he was going to sleep. As he laid down onto the bed, he was surprised by the evident softness of the matress. Even the beds in the inns he had stayed before were not that soft as he found himself sinking into the matress without actually reaching the bottom.
The rich sure know how to enjoy soft living...
As this thought coursed through his mind, Reyn saw a little boy peeking through the door curiously. Reyn just gave a smile as he sat on the bed and patting the spot beside him, an invitation for the kid to sit down with him. The boy, on seeing that, gave a wide grin as he ran towards the bed and jumped up onto the bed, making himself comfortable lying down.
"So why you're here?" asked the blonde elf.
"Well, just overheard what you and my dad was saying, so I'm getting pretty curious about one thing..." replied the boy.
"Your dad? Are you talking about Pontes?"
"Yeah that's him alright. By the way, my name's Tyron," beamed the kid, "Say, can I call you Reyn? That may sound more relaxed..."
"Wow, guess I'm really getting famous for a little kid to know me," grinned Reyn, "Anyway, what do you want to know?"
"Well, I heard about what you've said on life and death, so I'm wondering what kind of monsters you've killed on your way up till now..."
"And why would you want to know?"
"Well... erm I just want to know how a person can beat the odds against certain monsters that I don't think I'll like to face. Maybe one day I will face them... who knows..."
"So what do you think on the definition of the line between life and death?"
"Well, I guess it's like you're virtually near death and then somehow, you just pick yourself up, fight back and win."
Reyn laughed as he shook his head, "No you're wrong on that. There's no such thing as victory through sheer will when one is near death in literal terms."
"But then why did you say the whole thing on life and death?" Tyron asked as his face screwed up in curiosity.
"Actually it's very simple. What are the things that you value?"
"Erm... I guess it's my dad and Uncle Tasler. Why did you ask that by the way?"
"Because I want you to think about one thing: Are you willing to stake your hold on these things you value during combat?"
"Erm, what do you mean?"
"What I mean is very simple. To fight for them and discover the will to win in the process."
"Well of course I will."
"Don't say such things too easily. In battle, there can be scenarios where you just can't win at all. When things come to this point, are you willing to sacrifice yourself?"
"Then you'll die sooner or later without being able to protect what is dear to you."
"So you're saying I should run like a coward?"
"Actually no. Escaping from a battle required consideration. But above all, you must have the courage to do so. The moment of wanting to run or not is the definition of the line between life and death. In short, it's a choice between living on or dying. Only when you got the guts and wisdom on whether and when to retreat can you experience the hunger to become stronger in will and strength."
"But there will always be times where you just can't retreat, right?"
"And that's when you will face the brink of death..."
"Like the realization that you're going to die?"
"No. It's the mindset of winning at the cost of your life. No matter what the situation is..."
"But that's the way of winning isn't it? To be prepared for death..."
"Risking life and sacrificing it are two different things together. The former is the way of battle. The latter is nothing more than forfeiting your life by default. Remember that winning is nothing if you end up dying. There will be people crying for you and you won't be able protect what you value the most. Understand what I'm saying?"
"Erm... I sort of got it although my brain is still going nuts..."
"Don't think too much about it. You're still not up to that age where you should contemplate about your life." smiled Reyn.
Tyron looked at Reyn for a while with observant eyes. Then he said something that Reyn never expected.
"Reyn, are you crying?"
"I mean you seemed like crying in that smile."
"Then am I crying as of now?"
"Erm no. I just got this odd feeling though."
"Then most likely it's a mental mix up," Then Reyn got up, "Well, I guess I need a bath now. Just run along, ok?"
"Well sure." answered Tyron as he exited from the room.
Reyn never had any prior knowledge on the aromatic oils that the rich and royalty were so used to in bathing. So when he observed the vials containing these substances, he just put a bit of everything into the warm water filled from the taps into the tub. To him, this kind of minor issue never mattered to him anyway.
That being said though, Reyn had totally underestimated the effects of the stuff within the small bottles. Three minutes or so soaking in the tub had virtually made Reyn entered a mode of total relaxation. Never did he ever had this kind of feeling before in his twenty years of fighting. That very soothing feeling however, brought him back to the specific memories that he had in the past. Memories that defined the greater part of his twenty years fighting the opposition.
"What a bunch weaklings... they're not even enough for a warm up."
"To be honest, orcs were not that much of a big deal by average standards..."
"Well, they're definitely down on their luck to meets us. Thinking that they could outnumber us twenty by four is a big time mistake. We're definitely no pushovers. What a bunch of losers. Don't you think the same as well, Reyn?"
To these words, Reyn could only smile in reply.
Reyn smiled as he remembered the memories he had with those three individuals that had the greatest impact on his life. Their relationship was very simple: mutual respect. And it was this respect that formed their friendship. Unfortunately, all things had to come to an end not to mention his bonds with them ended on a premature basis. And the cause of it, Reyn knew it better than anybody else. As he looked down, the multiple scars on his body serves as the sole reminder of his selfish decision.
The scene of a young girl dead before him in a pool of blood, the knife in her hands embedded in her heart. He only knew too well. That this was due to his own weakness. Yunice, the one that he had sworn to protect was no longer alive. Never would he witness her smile and laughter. All because he watched her left him... to accept the fate that she wasn't meant to have...
Reyn lifted up his right hand and clenched it into a fist. He knew what he had done after the ordeal. The choice to disband the brotherhood he had formed with his three friends. All because he felt the need to walk his path alone. All because that incident gave him a greater hunger to become stronger. The hunger that he had never felt before in terms of extent. That very same hunger that eventually made him decided that being alone was the best way to be more powerful.
So that I can truly face the one who betrayed me. The very same person who abandoned my mother to her fate...
Then for some unknown reason, Reyn remembered Tyrons words.
Reyn, are you crying?
Reyn never thought about this question before, but now that he remembered these words, he knew what Tyron said was true. He was crying. Not on the outside, but within the heart. And he knew why. The loss in his life and the selfishness within him that resulted from it. That was enough to rend his heart, enough to fill it with a profound hurt.
With the thoughts of the past lingering within his mind, Reyn wore back his own clothing. For some reason, maybe due to dumb luck perhaps, no one took his clothes to the laundry by the time he got out of the bath. It was fine with him though since he had grown comfortable in his own gear. Night has fallen now and Reyn decided that he would turn in early. If it's possible, then he would most likely leave the next day.
Then as he started towards the bed, he started to feel rather light. Then before he knew it, he found a certain difficulty in moving fluently. That turn of events, however, didn't messed with his senses as he barely managed to evade a knife thrust from the side.
"Not bad at all. It seems that I should strike later though..."
Reyn turned to the direction of the voice and saw a human male clad in black with a mask covering the lower part of his face. Reyn's eyes were narrowed as he surveyed the person before him. Reyn was obviously no idiot. The whole weakening and getting attacked were definitely linked. Only an idiot would link them together as a simple case of coincidence.
"Wow, I never expect a guest at this moment..." Reyn remarked.
"Actually, someone hired me to get rid of you. I don't know the reason, but that doesn't matter since I'll get good money once I'm done with you."
"Ok, let me guess, it's someone in this town. And he's someone whom I've came across before."
"I'm not too sure about this, but that Ortoff seems to dislike you from our exchange."
"So kind of you to tell me the truth..."
"Doesn't matter anyway since you're gonna be dead..."
Then the assasin lunged forward slashing out with his knife. Reyn barely managed to dodge to the side as his opponent turned around at the same moment, the knife aiming for the throat. Due to the weakening effect, Reyn could only bring his right arm to deflect the blow, an act which resulted in a gash across the forearm as he did a backstep.
Emboldened by the first draw of blood. The assasin performed a flurry of attacks in a bid to land an eventual fatal blow. Reyn, unable to fight back, could only dodge. At the very best, he was able to evade the attacks barely as a number of wounds began to surface. Gradually however, he was forced towards the mirror-table where his sword was laid onto. Sensing the moment of the kill, the knave went in for the final blow, the knife going for the heart. Or at least that was what was supposed to go according to plan.
Facing the attack, Reyn's response was nothing more than a wicked smile as a green circle of elven runes flashed instantly on the ground. The sight took the masked man off guard as his elven opponent drew his sword and lashed out towards him in a surprising speed. The human manged to leap back with a gash across the shoulder. He was lucky to be honest. If his reflexes were later by a split second, he could have caught the slash across the neck and ending up dead.
The attacker's face was stunned as he sensed the fact that Reyn somehow or another managed to recover from the effects that were plaguing him just now. Seeing the shocked expression through the eyes, Reyn just gave a smirk as he placed his left hand in front of his chest. The result being that of a similiar circle of magic being displayed before his palm, the wounds closing swiftly.
"Why so surprised? That's what real magic is all about. Now shall we play again?" questioned Reyn in an arrogant manner as his sword crackled with the element of lightning as if in response to his words. The rogue knew by then that he had taken a bad piece of business as a single phrase went through his mind.
Well, here's the end of the chapter, Guess it wasn't much of a cliffie, huh? Anyway, sorry for being so late in my updates. I got caught up with a major bout of laziness to be exact. So yeah, sucks to be me. Above all, I admit it's my own fault big time. :( Anyway, here's the recon parts on the stats for Reyn and Vyjarn:
Ok, so yeah, done the recon here. Waiting for you guys' reviews btw. Bye! :)