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Book one:Enisccay the Dreadful
On the grassy hills of Vanity, the great sun of summer glowed brightly in its royal skies of blue. The lazy buzzing of bees hummed in the vast patches of summer flowers. Birds of many flew and sang happily in the cloudless sky. The light warm summer breeze blew a vixen's cape like a seasoned warrior.
The vixen kept her keen eyes upon a castle in a great distance. Though it looked small: it was huge up close.
The tan vixen's torn turquoise cape blew behind her. Her bright blue eyes shone of great skill and slyness. She was on a mission for revenge.
Behind her was a band of dirty, savage and, nasty vermin. This included a few stoats, some weasels, a couple rats, and several ferrets. They all wore ripped and stained up clothes that have seen better years.
Their weapons were rusty and well worn. Battle scarred as they were, they still proved fatal.
Along side the vermin where six small young vermin. They were chained to a rusty chain line. They arranged from the age of four to nine years old. They weren't like the others: they were had no evil in them at all.
Their parents had raised them to be woodlanders and lived the woodlander way. However, their captors did not.
They were disgusted at the way these young ones were treated like goodbeasts. As all vermin know: you can take the vermin from the evil but you can't take the evil from the vermin.
The band of vermin are not slavers though. They simply came to "save" the children from being "brainwashed" by the woodbeasts. They travel from tree to tree to find any young good vermin. To where they take them is unknown and will remain that way.
The vixen (who was the leader) exhaled a harsh sigh. Life of revenge was all that mattered to her. This wasn't the first time she has been on a mission like this.
Many years past, when she was only a child, she ran along with a slave band lead by Slagar the Cruel. She had always admired the task as much as she admired Slagar. Still, she found it hard to keep a secret crush on the fox.
She had always found Slagar to be a great leader, but his heart was to another vixen. The vixen's name was Roseblood, who was Slagar's mate.
The small teen vixen looked up to Roseblood (Rose for short) as a mother and always followed her around like a baby chick. But she was always yelled at by a female rat named Daz, who always scolded her for being friends with Rose. Daz obviously hated Rose and wanted her to disappear.
Well one December, Rose gave birth to Slagar's first born cub. The cub was a beautiful vixen named Selound (named after her grandma and her father). This made Daz and her mate (who's name was Baluse) very mad.
They grew mad because earlier, when Slagar became leader, he promised the rats that their baby son, Vitch, would be the next leader after Slagar died. But that ended when Selound was born.
After Selound's birth, Roseblood died from an illness she caught when she was pregnant. Well the rats did their dirty work and Selound was abandoned. She was later raised by three woodlanders: a badger and two squirrels.
Slagar had been totally brainwashed and never knew his daughter until 14 years later.
The tan vixen was shocked after Roseblood's death, but she shortly forgot and went on with the slaving business. But the slavers were later left to kill each other after Slagar betrayed them.
The young vixen was the only survivor. She was badly maimed and a grip of vengeance formed in her young mind. She grew up with a vengeance against the one who betrayed her and left her to die: Slagar the Cruel.
The vixen grinned as that word echoed in her mind. Oh how she hated him; she hated him enough to where she went insane. She knew all of tricks and skills that she learned while working for Slagar.
She closed her eyes and heard footpaws approaching her. "What is it Stixfang" she said in a frustrated tone. Stixfang stopped a paw's length away from where the vixen stood.
His odd spaced-out looking eyes stared at her with a piercing gaze. When he spoke, it sounded like a faded and tired whisper. "I have leaded you to where you want to go. This is the end of how far my territory stretches. Hopefully you won't have a limited amount of captives next time" he said rather sternly.
The vixen fixed him with a frosty glare. She bared her fangs at the possum's statement. She gave a low growl. "If you were so concerned about how many we captured then you should have done it yourself, possum" she said in a dangerous whisper.
Stixfang didn't look at all surprised. He stayed the same; not taking in the fox's warning hiss. He spat on the ground near the fox's foot. His face remained a blank expression.
The vixen looked disgusted at the possum. Still, if she would have snapped and injured the possum, she would have no transport the next round. She brushed her headfur calmly. "Alrighty, I must continue on my way" she said with a crafty grin on her face.
Stixfang turned away from the vixen then went back the opposite direction.
The vixen then turned her gaze back to the distant figure of the castle. The thought of revenge buzzed in her thoughts. She turned then faced her band and captives. She grinned slyly. "Come on, lazy guts, keep movin'!" she commanded.
The band was on the move once more. As they moved, the vixen said quietly to herself; "That masked fox will pay for what he did to Enisccay the Dreadful!!”
Deep in Szen Woods, two companions walked side by side. Cyocra, a warrior Hare of Salamandastron and an otter named Spunk. They talked about their years past and their many tales.
Cyocra's chain mail tunic shifted on his silver-white fur. His torn crimson cloak blew gently in the light breeze and his limp ear flopped up and down with every step he took. His words were gentle when they fell from his lips. At the end of almost every sentence, he ended it by saying "wot"; too often for a normal hare.
"Ya know Spunk, when I was a young leveret, my ole' pa use to tell me all sorts of stories, wot" Cyocra said nibbling on a dandelion shoot. Spunk laughed then took out a scone from his haversack.
"Hmm indeed mate, oi r'emember my father telling me some o' 'is tales from his young days, Ha and a cheeky young rip he was" Spunk chortled before taking a bite from the scone.
The hare warrior took a long drink of water from his canteen. He wiped a clean paw over his mouth then sighed. "Hmm, I remember your dad, Cheek was his name. Ah yes, good ole chap he is. Adopted by my fellow friend Basil, wot wot" Cyocra exhaled.
The young otter chuckled at the hare's comments. Suddenly, the fur on the back of Cyocra's neck bristled. He stopped his companion. "Wot's wrong mate?" Spunk whispered.
Cyocra looked seroius. "I don't know but, keep quiet."
Cyocra drew his battleaxe then walked cautiously towards some bushes. His ears turned to fix on the location of the sound. He sniffed the air but after a few whiffs he put a paw over his nose. He started to gag at the horrible smell. "Spunk, cover your nose. This area reeks of rotting skunk flesh, wot" Cyocra gasped.
Spunk placed a paw over his nose then ran quietly towards Cyocra. "Ugh, wot is that 'orrible smell?" Spunk complained turning into a sickly green color.
Cyocra placed a supporting paw on a tree. His battleaxe fell from his paw. He fell on his knees. "I don't know, but whatever it is, it's not alive" Cyocra said before vomiting.
Spunk fell on his butt. He put his head in the haversack. "Ugh, oi feel dizzy. Can we leave this--" Spunk squeaked but was petrified at what he saw. He sat frozen stiff with his eyes fixed on a horrifying sight.
Cyocra looked over to where his partner sat. "Spunk, wot's wrong? You look paler than snow, wot" Cyocra asked. Spunk was shaking all over. He pointed a shaky paw at a tree branch.
"C-C-Cyocra, b-behind you" Spunk squeaked in a frightened tone. Cyocra turned his head and saw the most frightening thing he ever saw.
Oh dear me, my years seem to go by so fast. My young son Slashx is finally getting married. It was not long ago when he returned from being away for many years. As I sit here with my writings, I begin to think of how I spent my teen years.
Fighting rats, healing the wounded, saving villages, and many more warrior deeds. Back then, I was known as "Selound the Angel", but now I'm "Selound the Motherly". Isn't that nice.
Many fox cubs began their duties as helpers around the castle today. My daughter is teaching some of the young vixens healing skills; while my husband, Zephyr, teaches the boys fighting skills. Since my father was growing too old to teach, he decided it was best for him to help me out with the recording. Bless his heart. I remember a time when he slain many goodbeasts as well as vermin. But he's changed since I came back into his life many years ago.
My stepmother, Samantha, often visits my mother at the Vermin Ghost Recovery Castle. She also spends some time with my grandmother as well. Poor grandma, she's getting far too old to be the healer. But they did manage to find a replacement. Good news to grandma and for the castle.
Oh my, time seems to fly by. I've hardly notice that I've been writing for two hours. I should really find a stopping point, and help my father.
Yours dearly, Selound, Recorder of the Castle of the foxes.
Selound got up from her seat then walked into another room. There, she saw an elderly male fox sleeping on a pile of dusty old papers.
His pale red and purple diamond-patterned mask sucked in and out with every gentle breath he took. His silver-patched fur was coated in a thin layer of dust. He was in a perfect moment of peace.
Selound tapped her footpaw impatiently on the floor. She stood in the doorway with her arms crossed over her chest. After standing for a few seconds, she walked over to the sleeping fox and tapped him gently on the shoulder.
"Come on old dog, there's work to be done" she said firmly. A moan came from the elder fox's mouth,
"Enghh ten more minutes, your ole pa's having his nap".
Selound rolled her eyes at her father's complaint. "Now, now Slagar, we don't want any bed sores on your body do we? Now come on, we have to organize the bookcase" she said shaking him a little.
Slagar grinned, "But, I don't wanna do it. Besides, this ole fox's too comfortable". Selound put a paw over her mouth to stop from laughing.
"Well have it your way, but I'm warning you that you might end up rotting in place" she said smiling.
Slagar gave a low moan then got up. His bones cracked as he stretched. "You're very stubborn, you know" he yawned. Selound chuckled.
"It runs in the family I guess" Selound teased.
Slagar smiled at his daughter. He then turned his head to look outside the window. "Looks like it's going to rain soon" he said, brushing himself off. Selound sniffed the air.
"Aye, smells like it too" she said in a depressing voice. Slagar slowly stood up, the walked towards his daughter.
"Come on there missy, don't let a little bit o' rain keep you down" he said grinning. Selound knew that her father was trying to cheer her up, but something still bugged her.
"Thanks dad, but it's not the weather that's making me sad" Selound sighed while she was about to sit on a chair. Slagar looked at his daughter with a puzzled face.
"Then, what is?" he asked.
A tear dripped off of Selound's whiskers. "There hasn't been a warrior in 22 years. I'm afraid the vermin raids are too much for us. Already we have lost many lives. We try to be good foxes, but we try too much. Many of our defenders are too unskilled to fight against our foes. Maybe our lives of peace will end".
"Maybe?" asked Slagar.
Selound braided her hair. "If the visions tell me of a new warrior, we will survive. But I haven't any visions for as long as I can remember" Selound said wiping her eyes. Slagar grinned comfortingly.
"Hmm funny, I had a vision just this morning" he yawned.
Selound nearly jumped out of her chair as she heard his words. "Really? Tell me, tell me!" she said excitedly. Slagar stretched then chuckled.
"Aye yes, where do I start? Oh now I remember. There I was, sleeping on the papers when suddenly a faint image of a person appeared in my dream. I couldn't make heads or tails of what it was, but it became clearer and clearer. It was an image of an old female rat. Now I didn't know who she was, but this is what she told me--
Bygone years have past, but still we remain vain
For the lack of a warrior, we shall fail
For seasons ago, the graceful bird died from plague
But soon to rise, and shall prevail
A precious green gem of letters four
Will help keep our hearts sane
For her middle name's not vague
But means a creature
A lizard of fire
That needs no teacher
Who helps bring hope and not dire
Regretful Rain's only heir
Will help us with no dare
Then she just vanished" Slagar finished. Selound looked puzzled.
"Hmm it's all a big riddle to me" she sighed. "But how will that help us with finding a new warrior?"
Slagar rummaged through the desk then took out a stick of charcoal and a parchment. "Well let's figure that out" Slagar said sitting down by his daughter.