The Legend of the Lady
Dedications: This fan-fic is dedicated to my friends on the Warriors Wiki, for this story is truly a tale of warriors- Jakko123, GroceryBag, Eulalia459678, Bluestar'sSecondDeputy, Kitsufox (though we didn't REALLY get along too well), Malinois, Jayfeather113, and Silvertree. Of course, my friends who came from this wiki to that one- Pinedance Coneslinger and MERLOCK.
This is a prequel to Lord Brocktree, and features the life of Spearlady Gorse
Young Lord Stonepaw sat in the library of Salamandastron, watching the young leveret named Blench attempt to feed her sister Daphne some oatmeal porridge. Blench chased Daphne around the library, both laughing breathlessly.
Stonepaw rose from the chair and started over towards a large shelf where a young hare named Fleetscut and his friend, a barely-out-of-leveret-stage pretty female named Sailears, were picking out books for the evening stories.
Sailears dropped a weathered old book onto the floor. Stonepaw stooped and picked it up.
A hare named Stiffener Medick came in from his patrol. Seeing the book in Stonepaw's heavily muscled arms, he bowed. “M'lud, what is that book?”
Stonepaw looked at the golden lettering on the front. It read, “The Legend of the Fifth Warlord. Account written by Spearlady Gorse, Badger Lady of Salamandastron.”
Talrond the Ancient let out a low whistle. “Spearlady Gorse! Now THAT was a jolly ol' warrior for ye!”
But Stonepaw wasn't listening. The young badger was staring at the cover in awe.
Fleetscut and Sailears had come away from shelf. In unison, the two young hares said, “THAT'S THE STORY FOR TONIGHT!!!!!!”
Smiling, Lord Stonepaw sat down. “Why wait until tonight? Let's start now!”
Daphne and Blench came over and the little leverets sat firmly down next Stiffener, Sailears, and Talorn.
Talorn gave Stonepaw a brave smile. “This will be good; I can feel it!”
Stonepaw opened the book to the page marked, “Prologue”, and began the tale of Spearlady Gorse.
Savage. Tyrant. Evil. Twisted. Mad. Crazy. Insane. All of these words were used to describe Talorn the Warlord. But in reality, none of these words really described him. There were no words to describe Talorn the Warlord.
The fox was slick as a shadow. He wore a black cloak with a huge hood that covered his eyes and made him look blind. He was all black, except for his nose, which was a silvery color and made him look like a dark devil. He had a huge axe as a weapon, with a poisoned end. After every battle, Talorn would lick his battle blade, savoring the taste of blood. The poison had no effect on him- nothing could kill Talorn the Warlord.
Talorn had a horde of a hundred-score fighters- all vermin. Except for one- a wildcat named Holack. Talorn had captured Holack when he was a baby- and done some horrible deed to him. Now, Holack's eyes saw only evil, and Talorn used him as a weapon. Holack would eat only flesh, and drink only blood. Any hordesbeast that put one paw out of place was fed to the wildcat.
Holack had curious eyes. They were such a dark black, that not even light was in their depths. The wildcat's dark eyes were hypnotizingly beautiful- if you survived after looking at them, you would remember them for the rest of your years.
Evil, yes. Crazy, no. Talorn the Warlord knew battles- he would conquer all with his horde as well.
The fox smiled. He strode out from under the tent that he was sitting under, and addressed his horde. When he spoke, he voice was harsher than a rock. “My scouts have returned. Good.”
The horde turned around. At the very back, which many of them couldn't see, were a rat and a weasel. How did Talorn know of their return?”
“Well? Your report!”
The rat came forward. “Sire, ye was correct! Thy mountain be in thy distance.”
Talorn smiled, his pearly teeth gleaming dangerously in the only shaft of sunlight. “And you, Carolick?”
The weasel tried to smile back weakly, but it came out as a grimace. “No ladger bord... er... that is... no badger lord sere, tire... uh... I mean...”
Talorn beckoned secretly to Holack. The fox's smile grew. “I know what you mean, Carolick. You want to die.”
Carolick grimaced back weakly. “Ses, Yire! Uh... yes... I mean NO! Uh... no, sire, I do not want to die!”
Talorn turned back to the rat. “You may join your postiton now in the Horde. You are lucky that I have saved your miserable life, rat. Thank me!”
The rat lie down and began kissing the ground in front of his Lord. Talorn turned away from the rat and looked at Halock. “Take him.”
Smiling evilly, Halock led Carolick away to his fate, kicking and screaming with fright.
Talorn turned to his Horde of Deathcarriers. “We march tomorrow! Without a badger lord to defend Salamandastron, we will rule!”
Invasion was also on the mind of General Nyloistic Isackile Maligast, or General Nylock. The badger lord, Urthrun the Gripper, had passed on about five seasons ago, which was long enough for any foes to gather an army large enough to conquer Salamandastron. The danger was worse because there were only five-score older hares left guarding Salamandastron.
Nylock sat with his back to a window. A knock sounded at the door. Nylock did not turn, but heaved a huge sigh. “C'm in, run'ers!”
Two young hares came in. They threw a smart salute and stood at attention. “General Nylock, sah! Signs of jolly ol' vermin on far eastern shores, sah! Breakfast ready at hall, sah! Report finished, sah!”
As they turned to leave, Nylock called out, “Quor 'as sent y'up to announce the 'olly ol' meal?”
The hares turned back. “Aye, sah! Why?”
Nylock shook his grizzled old head. “Meh meh! Nevah kestion an addah, Young Silis. Ye've yet t'learn y'ng 'un.”
Silis, the taller of the two hares, bowed his head respectfully. “Aye, sah!”
Groaning, Nylock rose from his chair. As Silis and the other hare, named Isris, turned the brass handle to leave, Nylock let out a mournful wail.
Startled, Silis and Isris turned around to see the ash-stricken General, who had turned around, staring down at the sea below from his window. Isris spoke first. “What 's 'tit, Genraal?”
Nylock rose a shaky paw to point out the window towards the coast. “Th...th...the... s...s...s'ip...p...!” Suddenly, the hare collapsed into his armchair and put his head between two cushions, sobbing wildly.
Puzzled throughly, Silis and Isris turned to each other and shrugged. Silis marched deftly over to the window and look out. A schooner with three sails was coming into the Salamandastron harbor. It had a corsair flag raised in a war salute at three/quarters mast, and there was a sentry rat posted next to the flag. Silis shuttered visibly.
Isris looked up from where she sat, trying to comfort the General to no avail. She dropped her voice to a shaky whisper of fright. “W...what 's tit?”
Silis gave the corsiar ship a last, hostile look before turned grimly to Isris. “Exactly as General Nylock said, marm. Tis a ship!”
The younger hare jumped upright, knocking Nylock's paw onto the couch. “B...but tis j...just a j...jolly ole...!”
Rushing to the window, it took Isris only a second and a half to realize the enormity of the situation. They didn't notice Nylock come and watch the corsair ship along with them until he let out another wail.
Silis jumped up, nearly falling out of the window. The General sighed. “Mah butiful Salamandastron! Ombused bah saa scum!”
But then he let out a secret smile. Isris and Silis understood instantly. The three gripped paws tightly and chorsed in unison, “A hare is a jolly ol' hare is a flippin' hare is a blinkin' hare, who are mighty perilous, sah, marm!”
Then, more to the ship than to them selves, still slasping paws, they roared, “Eulaliaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! 'S death on the wiiiiiiiinnnnnnnnnndddddddd!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
Quor the Salamandastron Head Kitchen Cook knew how to cook. She directed her kitchen helpers busily around the kitchen, first telling them to fetch the meadowmilk, brewed especially at Salamandastron, and the flour. Oats, almond nuts, and wild cherries found their way into Quor's oatcake recipe.
But no beast EVER mixed OR baked Quor's creations. Cooking and mixing were the only things that the old cook could do. She couldn't run around the kitchen, but at remembering recipes, there was no better hare than Quor Fyst.
Quor had been at Salamandastron longer than the General, and had known the mighty Lord Urthrun the Gripper quite well. Urthrun and Quor had come to Salamandastron in their young years to find the mountain overcome with vermin lead by the evil War Lord Tyrast Trylong, fox leader. Unfortunately, Tyrast's son, Talorn, had survived the battle, and hadn't been seen since.
But Quor never worried about battle, unless it came to mutiny in her kitchen. “Hah, me worry about any attack? As if there would be one! But if some chap is unlucky enough to come and try to take my beeootiful Salamandastron, I'd leave it to the blinkin' smart and flippin' kind General Nylock.”
And that was the way it had always been. Until today.
Lord Talorn and his Captain, a fox named Firelight sat talking about the attack they had planned earlier. Firelight was one of the smarter Hordesbeasts and Talorn liked him.
“What did you see, Firelight?” Talorn asked his scout and Captain. Bowing his head, the fox replied, “There was a Corsair ship, sailin' right into the bay of Salamandastron. Three hares, one older and two younger, leaned out the window and said somethin' about flippin' hares and blinkin' hares, then they shouted, “Eulaliaaaaaa! really long and loud like, then shouted somethin' like “Death on the Wind!!!!!!” or somethin' of those sorts. Then they withdrew their heads and didn't see the corsair ship raise their flag. Good thing too, otterwise the big hare would've fainted again! You see... it was the flag of Varra Lagstrumm the Spearbeast., you remember her, don't you, Lord?”
Talorn's teeth were clinched. “Yarss, thart ar darr.” Then he unclinched them and asked his next question normally. “What of the badger who killed my father, the War Lord Tyrast Trylong?”
Firelight replied carefully, “I saw no badger. I wouldn't guess he is still living after Varra's last raid on the mountain. He would be old, and even if he does still live, which I seriously doubt, Lord, he would be no trouble for such a Warrior as you.”
Talorn stared into Firelight's eyes as he replied, “For your sake he better not be, Captain.”
Suddenly, there was a distant shout from outside. Smiling, Talorn stood up. “I have come up with a wonderful plan, Captain. You say it is Varra Lagstrmm the Corsair, is it? Well then, she will give them a nice little fight! We will go with a few of our Hordesbeasts, slay the stripedawg and anyother animals that stand in our way, then ta-da! We have the mountain. You, or anybeast really, gives a nice liddle signal and the rest of the Horde rushes in, kills the corsairs and Varra, then takes anybody else prisoners or salves. Then we defend it, which isn't exactly hard, and whal-la! We have Salamandastron!”
Firelight smiled happily. He DIDN'T have to think up a plan. Good. “Wonderful, Lord.”
Talorn nodded. “Go get the Horde ready.”
Bowing, the fox left the tent.
Talorn smiled happily. What else was there to do? The mountain of Salamandastron would be captured before the night was over if his plan went as planned.
Lord Talorn Trylong was very sure it would.