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Moist droplets dribbled off the luscious, green foliage of Mossflower Woods, finding their way to the damp soil below. Birds chirruped as they soared through the sky, reaching their nests in slumber. A slight breeze stirred the fallen leaves of Autumn. The forest was a slient morn, the rays of gold striking every nook and cranny in sight.
A young water vole peered from behind a clump of reeds. Having escaped from the disapproving glares of his parents, he searched for a secluded hideaway. Unsheathing his father’s carving knife, he plucked a reed stalk and started widdling away at the plant, gradually sharpening it into a functional spear. He would surely show his parents of his true warrior blood! Angrily, the young creature hacked at the plant, letting his Mother’s word run through his mind, “Young’n, yore father is a great warrior, try actin’ more loik him!” Finally, after the last stroke, the vole wielded the weapon, aimed towards a flying bird, and threw. The spear flew straight and true, piercing the heart of the bird.The vole pranced off towards his fallen target. Once he arrived at the opening, all that was visible was a bundle of feathers. The light of life in the bird’s eyes had flown away to the sunny slopes. The lifeless carcass of the bird was examined by the water vole, a beast who had never taken another creature’s life before. A tear dripped onto the bird as a crackle of a leaf beneath somebeast’s paw was heard. Instantly aware of the sound, the vole’s ears perked up. There was some evil behind him. Nervously glancing from side to side, the creature wimpered out,
"M-mum? Is tha--." ccCCRKSLIT!
The vole didn't have time to squeak in alarm as his lifeless body hit the ground.
A slender beast draped in a checkered cloak revealed his presence as he stepped from the shadows. Clicking his claws against the hilt of his crimson stained sword, he hissed, "Hrmm...pity dis scum kerdint call to 'is family. Oh wot grief dey'll git when dey see 'is flea-bitten carcass layin' here, all dead-like. Hah! Dey will wanna skin me 'ide, dey will! But no… Death isn't an opchun for Ziltav! Death cowers at the very munchun of me name! Oh no...no beast sets a paw on Ziltav the Assassin!" At that, the assassin disappeared into the foliage, leaving an unsetteled silence upon the forest.
Chapter 2: The rosy walls of Redwall Abbey stood towering above all of Mossflower Woods, absorbing the hot mid-day sun. Below, the busy activities of Redwallers were everywhere. The peace loving creatures were busy with their seemingly never ending list of chores. “Pots and pans need scrubbing! These beds won’t make themselves! Fethc a basket of watershrimp for the hotroot soup, wontcha m’lad?” Orders could be heard everywhere, from mice, otters, squirrels, and moles alike. A young otter by the name of Fongul sat watching the chaos, his own universe of sword fighting and being the abbey hero clouding his mind as a barrel came rolling up the lawn. Finally back into his real world in the abbey, Fongul leapt up to lend the barrel a hand. Fongul peered behind the barrel to see a plump cellarhog named Brivkus Strewhog straining at the heavy barrel of strawberry cordial. The hog was desperately, and without success, trying to shoo away a begging horde of dibbuns who were pestering the hog for a sip of the tasty delight. “Away with you afore oi come after ye with m’laddle!” Hearing this, the dibbuns scrambled away in every direction, not wanting to be the unlucky one to be punished. Fongul chuckled at the young creatures, remembering back only a few seasons when he was doing the same thing. “Ahoy, matey! How’s a plump cellarhog doin’ this fine Autumn morn?” “Oh…it’s just you, Fongul. Oi thought t’was another one of yon dibbuns.” The hedgehog’s paw pointed towards the gang of dibbuns, who had begun a new game of “Steal-the-pastry-from-Brother Brushwind”. “Oi ‘member when oi was a young hog. Can’t blame the young’ns! Fun doesn’t sit afore yore whiskers, you have to find it yourself!” “Ah, so true. I wasn’t the easiest dibbun to deal with was I?” “Oh no, y’got that right, young sir, whenever yore whiskers peered from behind the barrels in m’cellar, I knew trouble was close by!” “hah, I recall those days. I am going to go see if they need any help with preparing the vittles in the kitchen, if you know what I mean.” The otter winked at the hedgehog as he leapt from his spot in the grass and pranced off towards the kitchen. The sweet aroma of pastries and puddings filled the air. Opening the door to the kitchen Fongul was greeted by a comical sight. Mice and Squirrels appeared to be ghosts, the white flour for the pastries covered every beast. Some careless mouse had dropped the bowl of flour on the floor, making sure every mouse and squirrel got covered from head to paw in the mess. A young molebabe pushed past Fongul, mimicking the pestering mousemaids of the abbey, “You’m s’posed to eata food! Norra play wiv it, silly beasts!” Fongul stifled a chuckle as the small beast paraded around the exhausted ghost mice. “Mistah Friar sit, you’m needa baf! Heeheeheehee!” The Friar made an attempt the snatch the dibbun in his paws, but the mole was too quick. “Jengro is too fast forra mistah Friar. Eeeeeeeeehh!” Jengro the Dibbun sped off as the Friar stood up and strode off in his direction. “You norra catcha jengro! Oi be too quick forra old mousy!” Jengro took off in the opposite direction of the galloping Friar. Finally, after a decent chase, the Friar gave up and returned to his kitchen. Opening the door, he was met once again by a sight of disarray. The poor mouse let out a sigh, knowing the amount of cleaning that would be needed to restore his kitchen. Fongul decided that it would be best to let the Friar relax, so he picked up a few fallen utensils and left the chaotic room. Seeing the glimmering abbey lake, Fongul decided that a nice nap would do him best. Running towards the lake and kicking off his sandles, the otter lay down on the soft grass, letting his eye lids droop. Little did the creature know that two beady eyes were watching him from the keyhole of the Abbey gates, noting everything inside the Abbey walls.