‘Feral’ By Delos Q. Andrews

Rating: M (extreme violence, cannibalism, swearing)

Plot: Lindsey sees the ranger D’ae in a whole new, and frightening light.

She sat in her cage. For three days now, watching the five orks do their…whatever they were doing. For three days, Lindsey tried to get out of her cage. No such luck. “No chance of yous getting out, stone bitch”, the ork leader taunted. “Sealed with magic stuff. When we get to our borders, you will be presented to our chief as his…..bed wench.” The very thought of that made the fey’s stomach turn. She sat back in the cage, watching as the evening sky soon turned to night.

As night came in, it started to rain. The orks continued to make a mess of their small area. Lindsey, from her vantage point, could see a small clearing. Two of them, actually. One was laden with caltrops, while the other was clear. The fey watched as the rain fall, then in the short distance a clap of thunder. Lindsey turned her head in that direction. ‘I should have stayed with the party’, she mused to herself. Her plan was to go see her husband, then return to the party, which was still in T’nari clearing up a bounty. Getting away to see her husband was the easy part, but she didn’t factor the ork party sneaking up on her as she slept in an isolated grove, which now served as her prison, magical enhanced cell notwithstanding. Now all she could do is wait for a rescue party…

The rain began to fall harder. The thunder closer, and now lightning flashed. Lindsey watched as the orks began to try to get into their makeshift shelters. Then she saw something quite unusual: A shiny object. She knew it wasn’t lightning….but what was it? She eyed the shape as went skyward, then arc over. She stared as the object slowly came into view. ‘An arrow…but from where?’ she asked herself while watching the now visible arrow’s downward decent. She stared motionless as the arrow slammed into the ground near the firepit with a dull thud. One of the orks who saw the arrow impact the ground soon started to reach for it. “NO!” the ork leader yelled, but was muted by the heavy rain, and the storm that came with it. The curious ork crawled towards and touched the shaft of the arrow……

Only to have a whole horde of arrows slam into him. The arrows slammed into him, piercing his skull, back and legs… killing him. From her cage, Lindsey could only stare in shock as the arrows tore into their target, shredding whatever life was there to sheer ribbons. Her horror grew as another pale arrow slammed into the ground. As the few remaining orks watched, the same result that ended their comrade’s life now fell upon them as the arrows dived down in torrents, slashing them to shreds. Their makeshift shelters now a torrid mess of leaves, and torn flesh. Only the ork leader was spared. He watched as his band was shredded from head to toe in what looked to be razor-sharp thorns protruding from the arrows. Those arrows, now covered in blood, bile…and whatever they were eating. He rose from his shelter, and made a line straight for the cage. “YOUS did this!? DIDN’T YOUS!!?” he screamed at the girl. Lindsey shook her head. “I did not! I swear!!” she cried. The leader was about to reach for her, when an arrow slammed into his arm. Then another….. then another slammed into his leg. The ork leader howled in pain as he tried to pull the arrows out with his free hand, only to cut his hand on the thorns sticking out from them. Lindsey looked closely at the arrows. Her moment of curious observation was broken, not by the rainstorm…but by a rather raspy voice.
A voice that on any other day would have brought the Fey a bit of amusement.

“I wouldn’t do that…were I you”, a voice stated through the chaos.
“Makes the pain worse than what it is……..”

Lindsey slowly turned her head towards the clearing, and what she saw coming through the clearing rooted her in place. The ork also turned his head to see a solitary figure coming through the clearing. The figure’s weapon was clearly drawn. “Chains…? Link?” the red-haired fey asked in a hushed whisper. “Zornita?….Bergus?”

She got her answer when a flash of lightning gave her, and the ork a view of the silent intruder walking slowly towards them. What Lindsey saw was a figure, wearing what appeared to be a long camouflaged trenchcoat. She then noticed the studded leather armor in the same camo pattern…… but what gave it away for her were the eyes that were now boring holes through her, though they were slight covered by the hood. They were blood red. She knew only one person could have eyes like that…..but now her next question was… where are his pupils? She was going to ask, but the figure stopped about six feet from them, and asked: “Are you okay, Gargoyle Girl?”

Lindsey nodded feverishly, and began to speak. The ork, in his anger, and in a lot of pain from the arrows in his arm, beat her to the punch. “YOU! YOUS DID THIS!! I’M GONNA……” he never got a chance to finish what he was saying. The red-eyed figure loosed an arrow, that went straight into the leader’s mouth. The once-tall, muscular ork band leader fell dead with a hollow thump. The fey warlock could only watch as the ork fell dead.

“I didn’t ask you, Green Skin”, the figure said, shaking his head slowly. He then walked, towards the ork. Reaching down over the now dead ork, he reached into the ork’s side pouch, and yanked a silver key from it. He stood up, and gave the key to Lindsey. “If you were that much into Green Skins, I could have taken you to an out of the way burlesque pad. Just pay me the 25 gp to keep me quiet.”

“D’ae! Don’t be so damn cheeky!” Lindsey spat while unlocking the gate to the cage. The ranger could only snicker as she stepped out of the now unlocked cage. She took in her new found freedom, and turned to D’ae.

“How long were you tracking me?”

“About a day or so. I was following them more than anything. The leader has a bounty on his head. You hadn’t bathed in two days…..they just don’t bathe, period…If you’re wondering, the others are still in T’nari, looking for you.”

“They don’t know you’re gone?”

“Chains does…but he’s a sleepy puppy now…won’t wake up till mid afternoon tomorrow.”

“Don’t tell me……” Lindsey started to chuckle a bit.

“It was either that, or have him going all blabbermuzzle. Better to shut his ass up with the heavy drow stuff.”


The Kingdom of Daytar Leamay KrisW