Peace

Peace

Status: Finished

Genre: Fantasy

Details

Status: Finished

Genre: Fantasy

Summary

Ten years on from the Shadow Wars peace has seen Severine thrive under the continued leadership of King Titus. Alexander Tor’al has vanished into the footnotes of history while Nathan Drison has retired to the quiet life. For Brent T’elc, Chosen of Heironeous, life has also changed. No longer adventuring beyond the next horizon he has finally found peace in one location. Commander of an army and beloved leader in Land of Zealots he continues to walk the difficult path of Chosen. Yet Brent knows all to well how fickle finding peace can be. I have used the D&D religion of Heironeous and have done so only out of deep and abiding respect and love for it. I have written added my own analects and personality, but have tried to keep as honestly to some materials found in the D&D world as I can. This is, for legal purposes, a fanfiction under the Open Games Licence.

Summary

Ten years on from the Shadow Wars peace has seen Severine thrive under the continued leadership of King Titus. Alexander Tor’al has vanished into the footnotes of history while Nathan Drison has retired to the quiet life.

For Brent T’elc, Chosen of Heironeous, life has also changed. No longer adventuring beyond the next horizon he has finally found peace in one location. Commander of an army and beloved leader in Land of Zealots he continues to walk the difficult path of Chosen. Yet Brent knows all to well how fickle finding peace can be.


I have used the D&D religion of Heironeous and have done so only out of deep and abiding respect and love for it. I have written added my own analects and personality, but have tried to keep as honestly to some materials found in the D&D world as I can. This is, for legal purposes, a fanfiction under the Open Games Licence.

Chapter7 (v.1) - Chapter Seven

Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: October 22, 2016

Reads: 163

Comments: 1

A A A | A A A

Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: October 22, 2016

A A A

A A A

CHAPTER SEVEN

 

Culin and the children returned the next day. There had been a cave-in at one of the many pockets along the cliff face to the north. It had taken a long time but Culin had managed to guide them back with the help of a ghostly hand.

 

Brent had visited the temple along with the families of the children. Since returning all those that had been missing had been checked and minor wounds tended. When the last of them had left Brent closed the door behind them and turned to face the clerics. Noticing them beginning to leave to go about their daily business he cleared his throat loudly. “I heard,” he said in a voice loud enough to carry, “that divine aid was requested and refused to help find those that were missing.” Several clerics exchanged glances. “Divine magic is not meant to be used frivolously.”

Brent’s head snapped in the direction of the voice. “And was it frivolous?” he demanded curtly. “The children had been gone for over a day.” An old priest folded his arms over his chest. “There were other things that could have been done; trackers sent for, sniffer dogs, more search parties. They had no need to bother our god with their problems.”

 

Brent’s tone turned cold with righteous anger. “Is that what you think? That Heironeous cares so little for the least among us that we may pick and choose when and where to help?!”

“That’s unfair, Chosen,” complained one man. “Not all of us think that way.”

“Really? Did you offer to help?” retorted Brent. Another cleric interceded on his behalf, “We were ordered not to by High Cleric Fion.”

“And that dissuades you of any responsibility?” Brent scanned the crowd and spoke cuttingly. “None of you went privately to offer aid or spoke out against such a ruling. Well,” he smirked coldly, “aren’t you all good little Hextorites obeying your superiors rather than your god.” Mutters of anger and outrage rose from those assembled. “Know this!” snarled Brent above the rumblings. “You may be able to hide behind such things in other lands but here the Invincible One watches closely. His eyes and ears are focused on these lands and I WILL NOT tolerate anyone deliberately bringing dishonour to His name or reputation.”

 

“But several of the street brats-” began a woman but Brent silenced her with a glare.

“WHO do you think ordered me to speak thusly?” His eyes shining with mystic blue and silver the Chosen walked into the midst of them and turned around slowly, meeting every eye. “It has been said that it is not a paladin’s place to reprimand those that hear the words of their god. However I am the Chosen; Heironeous’ speaker and representative on this mortal plane.” His Armour glowed faintly when he came face to face with the high priest who had emerged from his office. “His anger is mine to express. I may not have sweet words or eloquent phrases but I speak from an honest heart. Heironeous is a good man. It is not our place to judge. Nor is it our right to bless or withhold our words based on a person’s station or wealth.”

 

“Brothers and sisters many among our own numbers were orphans adopted by the church. Countless paladins and clerics were born to streetwalkers and pig farmers, to wife beaters and rapists. Hate the wickedness of the deed by all means but if we are to have an impact, a real impact, then we must also show the values that Heironeous holds above all others: Chivalry. Justice. Honour. Valour. We cannot pick and choose but accept all.”

 

Closing his eyes Brent took a breath and let it out slowly, feeling the divine presence lift from his form as he did so. Opening his eyes he looked across the crowd once more. “Say what you will of me. But in this land where I hold sway I will have my god spoken of with honour and His worshippers act with justice in all things.”

 

There was silence in the temple. Brent’s footsteps echoed when he crossed the floor. Pushing open the external doors he breathed out in relief that his piece was said. The warm sun bathing his face he strode away to plan his surprise.

 

 

 

His task finished at last he pushed the door closed and locked it. Going to the fireplace he added another log to the flames. Sitting back in his favourite chair he pushed his boots off and put his feet up. Picking up a book he began to peruse its pages making notes as he went.

 

There was a soft tap on the door and Patrick entered. Grinning he walked over and warmed his hands by the fire. “The night air’s still bitter,” he commented. Brent smiled but said nought. “You know there are many different ways a man could warm up on a night like this,” continued Patrick with a wink. Resting the book on his chest the paladin chuckled and asked, “Is that all you ever think about?”

“Yep!”

“If you’re that bored Patrick you could always read one of my books.”

“How about the one you were working on last night?” Patrick asked going over to the work desk and peering at the neat lines of script. Standing Brent walked to his side. “It’s not finished yet,” he murmured.

“What’s it about?”

 

Brent paused a moment to gather his thoughts. “When I was young there were many, many mysteries of the faith that I could not understand and others that I felt had no relevance or personal meaning to me.” Touching the bound books that he had already finished he admitted, “It was my lack of knowledge and acceptance of that lack that helped cause myself much personal pain.” Green eyes met his. “I would do anything to prevent another suffering as I did. By writing in the evenings I feel as if I’m helping.”

Patrick picked up a page and held it to the light. “Even if no one reads it?”

“Even then,” confirmed Brent taking the page from his hand. He felt a spark pass between them, his touch lingering more than was strictly proper to regain the piece of paper.

 

Patrick’s eyes sought and held his. “Do you like me?” Brent wanted to look away but forced himself to meet his gaze. “I would be lying if I said I did not.” Patrick released the paper and slid his fingers feather light along Brent’s forearm. Their eyes dropped to watch his hand crept past his elbow to his shoulder. The gap between them closed and Brent felt his body flush with heat. Nimble fingers played with his black hair, threading and tugging gently. “You want to kiss me,” murmured the green eyed siren, his other hand taking Brent’s and placing it on his hip. “I’ve thought about that morning in the tent many times over the past week.” Squeezing his hip Brent pulled him flush against his body and bent his head to taste the young man’s neck. Aye, Brent thought to himself, many times. But in my thoughts we didn’t stop at chaste kisses.

 

Patrick shivered as the hint of a tongue flicked over the hollow of his neck and he groaned softly. His fingers explored his lover’s back and he felt his arousal growing as Brent’s arm willingly encased his hips, his hand splayed on his lower back holding him close. Wanting more he bent his head til his lips were beside his ear. “What about my lips, Brent?” he whispered. “They’ve craved yours since we met.”

 

He froze. Brent. The heat and attraction that had been building in the paladin’s body turned ice cold. Recalling to himself who he was and the dangers surrounding him he suddenly pulled away and marched out of the room. Patrick stared at the door in disbelief and confusion. Blindly he gazed around the room until his eyes rested upon the Chosen’s writings. Wanting the distraction he sat down and pulled the bound leather marked ‘One’ from the neat collection.

 

 

The paladin made his way to the deserted rooftop. His black mood kept him warm against the chill of the early spring air while he cursed himself for his foolishness. It had been ten years since he’d been in love and almost as long since he’d felt anything similar. He was tempted, sorely tempted, to take what Patrick was offering and run. Or simply run and not stop until those green bewitching eyes were too far away to see, he thought. The smirk on his face turned to one of bitter disgust when he knew he would not. Making a fist he punched the turrets, the stone coarse and harsh against the skin of his hand. Just the thought of the young man who waited for him in his rooms made him go hard. I need to regain some self-control! he demanded of himself. If he’s no good he’ll reveal that given time.

 

But then the quiet voice, born from his past feelings of personal self-worth, would speak. Ah yes and he’ll love you even more for the great deeds, the actions you take to protect your friends and the lives you save. Even if it were true, that he liked the hideous scars that cover your body, he still wouldn’t take you as you want. After all none of them would touch you there, whore-dog.

“It’s not true,” he whispered bitterly, his forehead touching the cold stone and his fist beating the wall in a slow steady rhythm.

Oh yes, continued the voice of self-doubt. There was that one time. Was it really worth it doggy? Did you like the bone you got?

 

Steeling himself he opened his eyes. “I am better than this,” he told himself sternly. “I put those thoughts behind me before and will do it again.” Ignoring the numbing pain in his fist he looked up at the stars. “That was a different time, a different life,” he reiterated to himself. “I will not let it happen again.”

 

 

 

“You’re still awake.”

Patrick jumped. Still at Brent’s work desk he sat with a book opened in front of him. “I didn’t think you were coming back,” he muttered still not turning around. The door closed and he heard Brent walk over to his private cupboards.

 

“I apologise,” murmured Brent without preamble while he washed his fist clean. Having already healed it on the roof it needed no bandaging. “What?” said Patrick.

“I . . . apologise,” repeated Brent coming over to his workbench and looking down at the young man. “Look at me, Patrick,” he demanded softly when he continued to stoically stare at the page in front of him.

“No.”

 

Sitting on the edge of the table Brent cupped Patrick’s head in his hands and gently lifted it. “How well do you know me?” he whispered, his thumbs caressing his cheeks. “My life is a harsh one and my past bitter. In order to survive and find some peace I have denied myself much, yet I find with you I am breaking many of my self-imposed rules.” Sighing he looked long upon his face wanting to memorise each detail. The high brow line, the long eyelashes. The softness of his skin against the callousness of his fingers. A mouth that demanded kisses and promised heaven.

 

Patrick looked up and caught his stare. “Is that true?”

Brent nodded slowly. “You know my rooms had zone of truth cast into its very construction. Yet even without it I would not lie outright.”

Patrick’s eyes were as hard as his voice. “How long?”

“How long what?”

“How long have you had these ‘rules’?”

Brent let his fingers fall away from his handsome face and placed them in his lap. “Almost eight years.”

“And you’re not celibate?”

Brent blushed hotly. “I don’t think of myself that way but I haven’t . . .” He paused feeling the room’s spell influencing his choice of words.

 

“Had sex,” finished Patrick. He let out a low whistle. “You know I could change that, make up for lost time and all.” Brent ran a hand through his hair and took a breath to calm his heart rate. “It’s not that I’m not interested . . . ”

Patrick sniggered. “Not if the tent you’ve got in your pants is anything to go by.” Getting off the workbench Brent shook his head helplessly. “You’re driving me to distraction. I’m going to bed.”

“Can I come?”

Brent looked sideways at him. “Hey think of it from my side,” proposed Patrick. “Option A I get a soft bed, warm blankets and a sexy arsed paladin to snuggle. Option B I get a stone mattress and the joy of having one side baked from the fire and the other side frozen. After all I was promised a bed and I still haven’t got one.”

 

Brent blinked and felt his desire stir once more. My arse is sexy? Did he just say that?

“Funny you should mention that,” said Brent strolling over to a locked door and leaning against it. Producing a key he handed it to Patrick who gave him a funny look. Brent watched as he opened the door and gasped with delight.

 

Inside the small stone room was a comfortable cot complete with several blankets and pillows. A large bouquet of tiny purple flowers lay on the pillow. A small table and chest of drawers rested against the wall. Much of the ground was covered with a thick blue rug and around the walls hung several small paintings of various landscapes across Severine.

 

Walking over Patrick picked up the bouquet and tugged lightly on the royal blue ribbon that held them together. “What are these?” he asked inhaling their sweet scent. “Anemone, felonwood, purple pixie,” Brent listed them on his fingers, “and the little ones with the yellow centres are blue-eyed grass.” Patrick began looking for something to put them in. “It’s not much,” offered Brent handing him a vase, “but I hope you like it.”

“I do.” Arranging the flowers on the table by his bed Patrick looked once more around his room. “I really do.”

“Well then,” said Brent feeling that his presence was no longer required, “I’d best leave you to your rest.” Patrick walked him to the door then grabbed his sleeve.

“Aren’t you forgetting something?”

Brent frowned in thought. “I already apologised and you have your surprise. What did I forget?”

Patrick grinned. “This,” he murmured and kissed the paladin’s cheek. He laughed at Brent’s bashful expression. “Oh ho!” he teased pushing him out of the door. “If a peck on the cheek makes you blush imagine what my kisses will do elsewhere!”

 

Through the closed door Brent could hear Patrick’s laughter continue for several minutes. “How,” he asked the heavens when he climbed into bed, “am I ever going to survive him?” Closing his eyes he continued to listen to Patrick’s exclamations of joy as he explored his new room. A smile formed on his lips and remained there until morning when the light of day brought his responsibilities and past most strongly to his mind.

 


© Copyright 2017 Justin Fyld. All rights reserved.

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