Bus Ride Fantasy

Skyrim FanFiction, Skyrim Erotica, and More

A Second Chance

argonian

When a body regrows itself, the mind comes with it.

Kreeves remembered the marshlands where he grew up like he’d walked among them yesterday—the sulfur smell and the squishing sound his hatchling feet made in the damp earth.

As his bones knitted themselves back together and his organs regenerated, he remembered the metallic sound of Imperial armor echoing through Archon at midnight. A thousand foreign souls invisible in all that dark and fog.

He remembered his spear—the weight of it in his hands and the sound it made sailing past his ear after he’d thrown it.

Kreeves’ broken spine straightened out, his ruined eye regrew. He remembered the first man he killed—a sergeant in a purple cape who’d come at him with a short sword, bellowing and howling and calling him a monster.

Kreeves had put a spear through his heart and moved on to the next man. Then the next, and then the next.

It seemed funny to him, that after all those bodies he’d put in the ground, it was a little Wood Elf who’d finally done this number on him. He laughed a little, and then cried out at the stabbing pain it caused.

His ribcage stretched and tightened around him—bones shifting slowly back into place. Muscles tightening and loosening as they performed their painful work.

Kreeves was wedged between two rocks in the shallows of a river. He was deep in the Forsworn Hills. Two, three days outside Markarth, probaby. Maybe more. He was lucky to have ended up in such a sheltered spot. A Forsworn would have to practically trip over him in order to find him.

On the fifth day, when his left arm was more or less healed, he began scooping up small sips of water, and even managed to snatch a fish or two that happened by.

It was meager sustenance for all the work his body was putting in, but it was enough.

Kreeves figured his legs were four, maybe five days from working again when Asriel found him.

The white-haired Dunmer approached from the east, wearing the same immaculate traveler’s clothes he always did—looking as though he’d taken three steps out of his front door instead of having walked fifty miles into a hostile wilderness.

“It’s one Argonian in a million who can do that,” he said, stopping on the opposite side of the riverbank.

Kreeves coughed a little and then tested out his voice. He let a guttural hiss, a croak, and then words.

“I didn’t know there were a million Argonians,” he said.

Asriel shrugged. “At any given time, probably there aren’t. So you see, that talent of yours is quite an anomaly. You’re a lucky one.”

Kreeves looked down at his broken limbs. Felt around at his ruined mouth with his half-grown tongue. He had bitten his other one off somewhere during his rough journey in the river.

“I don’t feel very lucky,” he said.

Asriel nodded, but said nothing.

“How did you find me?” Kreeves asked after a time.

“It’s my job to find people.”

“Who gave you this job?”

Asriel seemed to consider that question as if it had a very complicated answer, and he had to explain it to a child.

“Your master, Sujava, is still alive,” the Dunmer said by way of answer. “At least, in one sense of the word.”

Kreeves didn’t know what that meant, but it seemed unlikely that the fat merchant had managed to overpower the black-haired wood elf. Not unless he’d gotten very, very lucky. But if he was still alive, that meant that his blood-debt was not yet fulfilled.

He hadn’t even gotten a chance to consider his life of freedom, and already it had been taken away.

The Dunmer seemed to grasp his thoughts. “Held you under the Uskejej-a-rakai, did he? I’m not familiar with the restrictions, exactly. Couldn’t say whether you were still tied to him or not.”

Kreeves narrowed his eyes. “So he sent you here to collect me?”

“No,” Asriel said quickly. “He’s not in much of a position to send or do anything. Likely never will be again. I’ve come on my own accord. You see, before Master Sujava’s…unfortunate incident, he gave me a task. I completed the task, but now I have nobody from whom to seek payment.”

The Dunmer squatted down by the water. Picked a few pebbles from the ground and tossed them one by one into the slow-moving water. Plop. Plop. Plop.

Kreeves realized he was waiting for a response. “You must be joking. Look at me. I’ve got no money for you. If you want payment, go pick it from Sujava’s corpse.”

“As I said, your master is not dead. He is just unable to fulfill his promise to me.” The Dunmer rose from his squatted position. “However, I understand your predicament.”

Asriel closed his eyes and put one finger to his lips. Thinking. For the first time in the years Kreeves had known the strange elf, he appeared to be experiencing something close to an emotion.

“I have an alternative offer for you. One that may prove mutually beneficial.”

The Dunmer opened his eyes again, letting the burning red cores dig down into Kreeves.

“It’s not like I can walk away from you,” Kreeves pointed out.

Asriel nodded sympathetically. “The Bosmer female who put you in your present condition—and your master into his—I know who she is. I know where she is. And best of all, I know where she is going.”

That gave Kreeves something to think about.

“You’ve been given a second chance at life, though,” Asriel continued. “I would understand if you wanted to start anew. Or perhaps you would like to return home?”

Kreeves thought about that. His regrown memories of Black Marsh were fresh in his mind. Crisp and clear and vivid. But he knew it was a just a trick. That life did not belong to him now, any more than it did before the she-elf threw him off the cliff. And, always, there would be the blood debt.

“No,” Kreeves said. “Tell me more about the elf.”

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5 comments on “A Second Chance

  1. Elspeth Aurilie
    February 3, 2013

    Excellent. I thoroughly enjoyed the description of regeneration and how you intertwined his memories. And I love the way this story is woven together.

    • Fargoth
      February 8, 2013

      Thanks! It was hard to think of what goes on when all those potions get drunk and restoration gets cast – the invented reality behind the video game actions is super interesting though.

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This entry was posted on January 25, 2013 by in Skyrim Fiction and tagged , .
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