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The Broken Oar Grotto Massacre: Part Two

Dead Guy


There were six boats. Five men in each one. The oars dug them forward through the gloom of the grotto.

Thirty more Blackbloods coming towards Korman, Arnbjorn, and Narova. There was no way they could take that many more. Not out in the open like this.

“We’re fucked,” Narova hissed.

Korman squinted out at the boats. The Marauders hadn’t seen them yet, but it wouldn’t be long. Plus, the forty-or-so corpses floating in the water would be a pretty big clue something was amiss.

“They have Gonja,” Korman said flatly. “I will handle this.”

Narova followed his gaze. He was right. The other smuggler was standing up at the front of one of the boats with the stiff, unnatural look of a man who had a knife pointed at his back.

Probably did try to jerk off on them. Narova thought.

Behind him was a large, black Argonian. His eyes floated like milk-white fishes in a dark sea—narrow and reptilian and terrible.

“Jaree-Ra!” Korman bellowed, picking up his battered flail and scimitar. “I’ve come to kill you!”

The boats slid into the docks at the bottom of the wooden fortress and the Blackbloods jumped onto the dock with practiced swiftness. All of them had their weapons drawn.

“Our quarrel isn’t with you lot,” Korman called, motioning to them. “It’s Jaree-Ra I want. Stand aside and let us settle this.”

The Argonian laughed. “You come to our home, butcher our companions, and then ask for an honorable duel?” He twisted his dagger into Gonja’s back. The smuggler winced and ground his teeth together. His face had been beaten badly, and he had the orb-like eyes of a man who expected to die very soon.

“If you’re not feeling honorable, you can all come charging up here. But look around first.” Korman waved his scimitar at the corpses that littered the grotto. “Only one more person has to die today. If I kill Jaree-Ra, the rest of you can keep on breathing.”

“And if I kill you?” Jaree asked.

Korman shrugged. “These two are Brotherhood. If I’m dead, their contract is void. You can kill my partner and that’ll be the end of it.”

The Blackbloods all looked to Jaree-Ra. Narova could see on their faces none of them were anxious to go charging up the ramps at them. Jaree must have seen that, too.

“Fair enough.” He threw Gonja out of the way, drew a Dwarven sword with his free hand, and stalked up the ramp. His claws clicked against the wood with each step. The rest of his men stayed put.

Korman wiped at a cut on his brow with his forearm. “The chests are down there,” he motioned with his head to a half-sunken ship in the water. “If he kills me, might be he’ll actually let you go. But, if it was me, I’d make a pass at all that Moon Sugar. Bloody fortune.”

He spat and headed down the ramp.

“What do we do?” Narova asked Arnbjorn.

“We watch,” he said.

Jaree-Ra and Korman met on an open, middle landing that was build from half an old ship deck. The Argonian backed out almost to the bow, keeping his white eyes fixed on the Nord. Narova moved to the edge of the rocky shelf so she could see better.

“Make your move, you pale hunk of meat,” Jaree-Ra hissed.

Korman bulled forward, swinging the flail down at the same time he swung the scimitar in a violent sideways arc. Jaree-Ra moved like lightning. Leaping above both cuts and pressing his feet against the high bow of the ship.

For a moment, he was perched there at an impossible angle, muscles coiled and tightened as Korman yanked both of his weapons backwards out of the wood. Then the Argonian was rocketing forward in a blur. His golden sword flashed out as he careened past Korman, who barely had time to pull his sword across his body and parry the strike.

Jaree-Ra hit the ground on a roll and snapped back to his feet, sword up and ready. Neither of them moved for a few seconds. Narova wondering what the hell they were doing, and then she noticed something.

Jaree-Ra wasn’t holding a dagger anymore.

Korman dropped to his knees. That’s when Narova spotted the hilt of the dagger jammed into his liver. Leaking blood. He dropped both his weapons at the same time and looked up at Narova. Nodded once.

Then Jaree-Ra took three steps forward and cut his head off.

The Argonian motioned to one of his men down below, who grabbed Gonja from behind. He didn’t even have time to scream before one of the other Blackbloods cut his throat.

Arnbjorn sighed. “That didn’t go well.”

The lizard looked up at them from the middle platform. Narrowed his reptilian eyes. “What’ll it be?”

Arnbjorn turned to Narova, looking for an answer in her eyes. “No shame in keeping our lives,” he offered.

“Do you really believe that?” she asked, drawing her dagger from its sheath.

He smiled. “No, not really.” But instead of raising his warhammer over his head and charging down the ramp, he tossed it into the water below, never taking his eyes off of Narova. “When it’s over, we’ll see if you still want to fuck me.”

“What do you—” Narova started to say. But it had already begun.

Arnbjorn’s nails rippled and extended in his hands. He dropped down to his knees and curled into a tight ball. His limbs twisted and rearranged—the grotesque popping of his cartilage filled Narova’s ears. Hair grew from everywhere. Thick and silver and tangled.

The Beast.

He took one look at her with yellow, ravenous eyes, and then he jumped off the shelf, landing amidst the Blackbloods.

“Werewolf!” One of them yelled.

And that was the last intelligible sound Narova heard before the screams began.

It was havoc. The wolf raked across one man’s face with his right claw at the same time he disemboweled another with his left. Pulled his guts out and flung them across the ground.

They tried to stab it. Tried touch it, even, but he moved too fast—churning through them like a gust of wind on an open plain. There was nothing there to stop the Beast.

It came up behind an Orcish Marauder, yanked his head off, and threw it at a Breton so hard that it smashed his face in and killed him. When a Nord took a swing at it with an axe, the Beast ducked and then punched a hole all the way through his chest, ripped out his heart, and threw it into it’s own mouth before charging at three more men. They were all dead before they’d even pulled their weapons back for an attack.

Narova was mesmerized by the violence. The unbridled power of it all. Then she caught a snap of movement from the corner of her eye.

Jaree-Ra. Coming towards her.

He surged up the wooden ramp. Click, click, click as each claw hit the ground. His sword was pulled back and ready to strike.

“Elf bitch!” he roared, flying through the air.

He was too fast for her. If she dodged him, he’d get her on the next strike, or the one after. It would be over in ten seconds or less. She knew that.

Only one thing to do.

She rushed inside his sword stroke and pressed her left hand against his chest.

Stop. She whispered.

Jaree-Ra hit the ground like a stump. His sword clattered off into the shadows. Narova was lucky it the paralysis spell had worked. She still fucked it up more than half the time when she practiced.

The Argonian was only still for a second. Movement was twitching back into his spine and legs when Narova stabbed him five times in the neck.

Enough to sever every artery that lizard fuck had in him.

Black blood pumped out onto the ground. Jaree-Ra bubbled some last pathetic moan out of his snout and then died.

The sounds of the screams came back into focus. Shrill, anguished screams of dismembered and disemboweled people. The last of them were trying to run, and the Beast was snatching them up by the ankle one by one and smashing their skulls into the ground. Each one made a wet crunch.

When they were all gone the Beast sniffed the air and snapped its head around to her.

Slowly, so very slowly, it began to stalk up the ramps towards her. Yellow eyes still brimming with rage and hate and hunger.

Narova backed up into one of the cabins. The Beast followed. She kept backing up.

Slowly. Slowly. Nice and slow.

When she felt the wall pressing up behind her, Narova flipped her dagger into a reverse grip and prepared to die screaming.

And then the yellow wolf-eyes cooled off. Turned back into the ice-blue lakes Narova recognized. The wolf curled over—it’s silver hide burning away to nothing. Animal limbs shrinking back down to human size in a matter of seconds.

Arnbjorn rose up. Naked and covered in blood. He looked around the room, still trying to shrug off the last of the Beast within. Sniffed once.

Then he looked at Narova.


5 comments on “The Broken Oar Grotto Massacre: Part Two

  1. Pingback: The Broken Oar Grotto Massacre: Part One « Bus Ride Fantasy

  2. Elspeth Aurilie
    December 29, 2012

    This is incredible. Your descriptions are so vivid and you depict tension incredibly well.

  3. Pingback: It’s About Time « Bus Ride Fantasy

  4. Pingback: On the Edge of the Pine Forest « Bus Ride Fantasy

  5. Pingback: Death Comes to Markarth « Bus Ride Fantasy

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This entry was posted on December 28, 2012 by in Skyrim Fiction, Tales of Narova Black Hair and tagged , .
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