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Bladetooth: Book 1 The Tyrant

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Prologue

A storm was coming and Kolouz Bloodblade lord and tyrant of the dusty plains new it would not be safe to sail the Goldmist his lorcha in a storm like the one to come. The Siberian weasel becond his captain and younger brother.

“Kolan, set us on a course towards the cost in the east,” he instructed . “And get the slaves rowing double time.”

“Yes Kolouz.” Kolan, replied trying to gouge his siblings mood. “Do you require anything else?”

“Nay brother, do as i have told you then be easy.” pressed Kolouz dismissing Kolan with a hard stare.

The storm raged bucking the Goldmist up and down like a mad beast. A small fox slave clung grimly to the mast as he furled the sails of the four decked lorcha. Glancing at the other three masts he saw other slaves in similar situations high up on the masts. That quick glance would change his life. The wind picked up tearing him from the mast and throwing him to the mercy of the ocean.


“Edra, come ‘ere, get a look at this!”

“What is it Rushstream?”

“A fox!”

“Lets take him to Ruggan, he’ll know what to do”


Ruggan Axehound the second looked down at the unconscious fox his patrol otters brought in.

“hmmm, a fox slave.” He mumbled looking at chain scars covering the form “No fangs to, Get the healer to replace them with something”

“Dad” Said Swiffia as she watched the patrol otters run and get the healer

“Yes”

“Can I look after him?”

“I sipose you could. But remember, take caution for the first week or so.”

“Why?”

“He is a fox, he may cause trouble. Go and prepare a bed and meal for him”

“Chief” The healer Interrupted in his hoarse voice “ I did the work requested of me”

“Good, what did you replace his teeth with?”

“Tiny daggers”


Chapter 1

A young mouse slumbered in a soft chair by the cavern hole fire, his once peaceful dream of sailing on the abbey pond turning into a turmoil of crashing waves and rain, A voice could be heard above the noise chanting

“Brought by the seven storms of summer

Hasten or thee heart shall grow glummer

Take with you the swift of paw

With knowledge in badger law

Leave as the new leaf buds

Beware the Fur of gold, Blade of blood

Time of peace shall draw to close

Head away from the east were the sun shows

But who shall save thee

One with fur like honey from the bee

Tooth of blade, Hunter of fin

With belt of adder skin

Son of Axehound”


Yarrow woke abruptly from his sleep shivering, the fire had gone out and snow was layered thickly on the ground outside. Yarrow shivered and resolved to go and see friar Sead in the kitchens. As Yarrows feet pattered across the great hall he looked out the window estimating that is was about an hour before dawn. He had a chance of getting a hot scoun and maybe a oatcake or two.

Friar Sead was a cheery brown dormouse with hints of orange in his fur, He gladly welcomed Yarrow into his kitchens.

“Hear yarrow, try my oatcakes, its a new recipe”

“Mmm thish ish good”

“Now Yarrow, don’t speak with your mouth full” Said a new voice from the kitchen doorway

“Sorry father Elm”

“Don’t fret Yarrow. Now Sead, my trusty friar.” Said Abbot Elm turning to Friar Sead

“Yes father?”

“Have you seen your brother, Bud?”

“Thats it!” Shouted Yarrow “Bud!”

“Thats what?” Questioned Elm

“had a dream and all I could remember was something about new leaves , and it came back when you said bud father.”

“What came back?”

“I think Martin spoke to me.”

“What did he say?” Abbot Elms voice changing in to a deadly serious tone

“This,

“Brought by the seven storms of summer

Hasten or thee heart shall grow glummer

Take with you the swift of paw

With knowledge in badger law

Leave as the new leaf buds

Beware the Fur of gold, Blade of blood

Time of peace shall draw to close

Head away from the east were the sun shows

But who shall save thee

One with fur like honey from the bee

Tooth of blade, Hunter of fin

With belt of adder skin

Son of Axehound”


Swiffia Axehound sighed and sat down on the sandy shore in front of her holt. Ever since she adopted the little fox that the patrol had brought in ten seasons ago she had barely had time to relax. Honeyoak she had wanted to call him, after the faint honey comb pattern on his back. Yes he went with it for a few seasons but after he slew a shark he was Bladetooth Finhunter.

“Hello Swiff!” Called a voice causing Swiffia to look up.

“Hello Honeyoak”

“Swwiiiiiffffff, its Bladetooth Finhunter!”

“Sorry Toothy, its a habbit. So what did you catch on your fishing trip?”

“A pike and a Greyling” said Bladetooth as he fiddled with his axe-pike

“Well thats dinner sorted, hand them over.”

“here you go” said Bladetooth untying the fish from his snake skin belt.



Abbot Elm sighed and shook his head. The whole abbey now knew of little Yarrows dream. All of them wanted to help or go with him. Elm’s thoughts were soon interrupted as Harley and Shashi the abbeys resident hares bounded into the room

“opps sorry sah” said Harley tugging his blue scarf as he bumped into the abbot “but Yarrow...”

“and the others are looking for you sah” interrupted Shashi his twin sister, her matching bow bobbing up and down.

“Looking for me? Ohh yes of course, we're going to have a look at the riddle. I must thank you two for reminding me, you may come and help if you wish”

"Top hole sah"

"You’re the bilinkin' best sah"

"Well, we better get going then"


As abbot elm strode in to the gatehouse flanked by Harley and Shashi. He was met by loud muttering, each occupant have a conversation with another.

“hush, we all know why we are here and let us get straight to business, Yarrow, will you please recite what martin said to you.”

“He said,

Brought by the seven storms of summer

Hasten or thee heart shall grow glummer

Take with you the swift of paw

With knowledge in badger law

Leave as the new leaf buds

Beware the Fur of gold, Blade of blood

Time of peace shall draw to close

Head away from the east were the sun shows

But who shall save thee

One with fur like honey from the bee

Tooth of blade, Hunter of fin

With belt of adder skin

Son of Axehound”

“Well,” Said Blossom, the abbeys recorder as she got up from her chair. “I think i have something that might help. Harley, Shashi will please get my brother Bud, he might be able to help us.”

“Race ye there, wot!” Harley called to his sister as they raced out the door Blossom rummaged through several shelf until she found what she was looking for. She placed the book on her desk and flipped through quickly.

“There,” she cried “The summer of seven storms, originally called the summer of the buzzing bee, seven storms raged across the land causing floods and changing the land drastically. Nine landslides, three floods and twenty nine trees fell over in the abbey and emedit area.”

“That was ten seasons ago! we’ll never find what it was now”

“Hush everyone” Abbot Elm cried over the increasingly loud mutterings “If martin has said to look for what ever it may be, Then look we shall and we shall find it.” As Elm finished speaking Harley and Shashi burst through the door with a rather disgruntled Bud following

“Ahh, Bud, there you are.” Said Blossom as she smiled at her brother “You always did have a head for riddles.”

“Ahh, yes riddles. I do love a good riddle. Come on then, tell me the riddle and lets see if i can help you.” he chuckled as he sat down in an empty chair. Yarrow stepped forwards and slowly recited the riddle.

“Brought by the seven storms of summer

Hasten or thee heart shall grow glummer

Take with you the swift of paw

With knowledge in badger law

Leave as the new leaf buds

Beware the Fur of gold, Blade of blood

Time of peace shall draw to close

Head away from the east were the sun shows

But who shall save thee

One with fur like honey from the bee

Tooth of blade, Hunter of fin

With belt of adder skin

Son of Axehound”

“It was Martin who spoke these words to you?”

“Yes brother, but not directly.”

“Well, we still have two more weeks until you must leave”

“Leave brother?”

“Yes, it says you must leave as the new leaf buds. It also warns of something that was brought by the storms and tells of who must be found, including where and when to look for them.” Yarrow gasped at how fast Bud’s nimble mind had worked it out.

“Well then,” Elm interrupted “Thats mostly sorted, so will everybeast, except, Yarrow, Bud and Blossom please go about your chores.” As everyone slowly filled through the door Abbot Elm found himself watching Harley and Shashi sadly waiting to leave. “Harley, Shashi, on second thoughts you can stay.”

“Thanks sah!” they cried in unison as they bounded back into the room.

“What do you know of badger law?”

Chapter 2

The mountain Salamandastron loomed in distance as long patrol runner Lancepaw De mayne loped across the sand. Lancepaw turned sharply as he heard soft footsteps. He took a step closer to the soft sound and gasped as he saw the source. A rat! And a yellow one! This close to the badger mountain to. it started hissing at him, in a strange language.

“Relinque lepus ante nos accipe vos.”

“Wot?”

“Relinque lepus ante nos accipe vos.”

“Wot in the blazes is go...” his last word was smothered by a tough vine gag

“I said…Leave...hare...before...we take...you. You...not go. Now we...take you” It said in broken words. Something hard hit him in the back of the head and all went black.


When Lancepaw woke he was gagged and trussed upright to a thick pole. The gag was rubbing against his mouth. He slowly chewed through it.

“Where am I?!” he shouted into the pitch black room. “Wots ‘appning? Why am I here?”

“I say...a little...speech...of...yours…but not...many.” A torch was lit from a small spark. As light flushed around the room, Lancepaw was able to see his surroundings. Hundreds of the yellow rats we packed into a spacious hall. The one whom he had seen first was holding the torch. It was by far the tallest, all thin and lanky.

“Magnus Rex...shall now...see thee. Mare, Unda, laxo eo! Come...with me” Two rats, presumably Mare and Unda, slunk forwards and swiftly slit the ropes. Lancepaw found himself being dragged through the crowd. As they reached the doorway Lancepaw tugged at the shoulder of the rat.

“Magnus Rex? what does that mean old chap?”

“It means...great...king in...your...speech” before Lancepaw could reply he was dragged through into a small side room “I am… Litus...the mus. We...are the...Mus. You...are?”

“Lancepaw, Lancepaw De mayne.”

“When...I take...you..to Magnus Rex…say, Ego sum lancepaw, Rex. Ego sum Humiliatusque ut dignum vos. It...mean...I am...lancepaw...great king...I am...humbled...to meet...you”

“Ok, what language is it?” he asked as he was marched down a corridor.

“lingua latina...the…old...language...or...latin.” They approached the door a young guard stopped them

“nomen et titulus!”

“Era litus ut vide eius sublimitas” Litus spoke with authority like a captain or high guard.

“multis paenitet, mea era” The little guard squeaked.

“Sciatis tuus praefectus. parva unus.” She sniffed. As she marched through the door and into the throne room. The king, ohh the king, he was magnificent. He was a tall broad shouldered beast, his fur more of a gold, clothed in silks of fine flowing blue with intricate designs of waves and shells, trimmed with fine gold thread. Litus bowed low and muttered

“domine mi, habeo adduxerunt in lepus”she rose at a nod from the king and secretly kicked Lancepaw down into a kneel

“Wot, ohh yes...Ego...sum lancepaw, Rex. Ego sum...Humiliatusque...ut dignum...vos” the king slowly rose as Lancepaw said this, revealing that his throne was made of the hull of a beautiful boat.

“tua classis?” the king almost purred as he said this, Litus swiftly muttered in Lancepaw’s ear.

“Your class…say...it”

“Galloper. I’m a galloper”

“Ipse est ‘galloper’”

“Galloper?” Questioned the king, clearly confused.

"’Galloper’ Est eius title. Id est similis scultator, Rex”


Ten seasons had passed since Kolouz had last seen these shores, it was a land of plenty and Kolouz couldn’t wait to go ashore. Half a season he’d spent on this boat without setting paw on land. Barely going out of the cabin he was in now. A soft knock on the door heralded the report of one of his new captains.

“Come in and report.” he called. It was Firefur the pine marten, one of his newest captains he had been forced to promote after the crew swelled at the last port.

“The land you spoke of has been sighted”

“I know”

“Kolan has spotted a cove in which we may anchor.”

“Good, tell Kolan to make anchor at once...and, that i will be leading the landing party”

“Yes, my lord.” Firefur backed out of the cabin closing the door behind him. Kolouz swiftly turned and strode to a small coset. He wiped out his navy blue velvet cloak and katana. He buckled on the katana, draped on his cloak so the katana was almost hidden and headed for the door.

The crew of the goldmist was set into tiers, the lower the number the higher your rank. To define the ranks when you first entered the crew you got a small tattoo on the back of your forepaw, if you rose a rank you would add to the tattoo.

“Rank one, prepare for landing. Kolan, attend me!” called Kolouz as he strode across the deck, crewbeasts parting to let him through.

“Brother,” Murmured Kolan as he sild up next to Kolouz. “You wished me to attend you.”

“Yes, I will be taking the advance party, you will organize or take the foraging party. No plundering, we want none to know we are here. And send me Veil.” He muttered.

“As you wish my brother” replied Kolan as he slipped away

“Master” whispered a voice

“Ahh Veil, here already?”

“Yes master, i heard you speak my name.”

“Good. Come i have a job for you”

The Veil , or Veil, was a master of assassination and disguise, so good that know one knew what he was. A large rat? A small fox? A Weasel? Stoat? Fearet? Anyone found out joined his costume collection. Whenever one of his victims fell prey to a ‘tragic accident’ Veil would skin them and fit their skins so when he wore them he was an almost a perfect replica of the unfortunate victim. He could also mix and match so he could pass for relatives or cross species.

“Now, come close Veil. None but us must know of this.”

Chapter 3

“Badger law sah?”

“Me an’ Harley here are absolute geniuses when it comes to all that badger stuff. ” Scoffed Shashi, waving her paws in the air.

“And how fast are you?” questioned Abbot elm.

“Fast sah?”

“We've won the wall race six seasons in a row” Sniffed Harley “And you doubt our speed?”

“Of course not! You have just said yourself that you are swift of paw with knowledge in badger law.”

“Yes” squeaked Yarrow “Harley and Shashi are coming with me!” he bounced around the room with the twins.

Look after him martin” thought Elm sighing, the west coast could be dangerous.

“Now, you're going to the west coast or somewhere near that.” Said Bud “ Lots o’ vermin in that area, i think you should learn how to defend yourselves before you go. Harley, Shashi, we have some large rapiers and Danon the shrew can fence”

“I’m a fairly good shot when it comes to archery”coughed Abbot Elm “And i still have my old bow which should be the right size for Yarrow.”

“Archery? I’ll give it a shot.” Said Yarrow. The twins cracked up laughing.

“Give it a shot eh? ” giggled Harley laughs punctuating his words

“Ohhh thats a good one” Snickered Shashi, with more control over her laughter.

“Now is not the time for laughter.” Sniffed Bud

“Yes, we have serious business to attend.”


Swiffia was crying. The small fox she had taken in, cared for and loved was leaving. He had grown up here. Frolicking, playing and swimming, yes, he was a right good swimmer that one. Good as any otter, but now he had to make his own way in the world.

“I’ll be fine Swiff” Bladetooth smiled.

“Yes but I’ll still worry about you!” she said pulling him into a bone breaking hug

“Owww! Swiff leggo o’ me” He managed to squeak. Swiffia smiled, he may look like a fool in his tartan kilt (A gift from the northern otters) and snake skin belt (The snake in question has never bothered anyone since), he was quite a bit taller than her her head only coming up to his shoulder but boy could he hold his own in a scrap.

“Stay safe Toothy” she whispered

“I will”

“Promise”

“You know i can’t” he joked as he wriggled free and trotted away. “Good bye Swiff! I’ll visit”

“You betta!” she called back and then he was gone.

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