The Last Pagan

All Rights Reserved ©

Summary

641AD A young Saxon farmer returns home from his first raiding conquest in Britain. After saving the father of his lovers life in battle he has gained prestige as a young warrior. After demonstrating braveness and ferocity in combat, he is now set upon the path to marrying the love of his life. Not before being framed for the murder of her father. Forced to flee to Britain he rises through the ranks of King Penda of Mercias household, the last pagan king. Facing many trials and tribulations along the way, this victim grows stronger and more resilient. Now older and wiser, more skilled and as brave as ever before he returns home. He returns home to take back everything that has been taken away from him. This a blood feud like no other, a story of love, death and vengeance. This is the vendetta of an innocent man.

Genre:
Action / Other
Author:
Jamie Macauley
Status:
Ongoing
Chapters:
1
Rating:
4.5 2 reviews
Age Rating:
18+

The Last Pagan

Chapter I

Old Saxony 641 A.D

Blood and sweat trickled down his spine, as she buried her fingernails deep within his soul. Wrapping his hands firmly around her throat; Beorn began to thrust deeper and harder with each and every joyous wail to the gods, he forced from her delightfully luscious lips. Parris wailed as if she was being ravaged by the all father, Woden himself. For it had been several full moons, since there last reunion, and each solar phase had felt like an eternity. The couple now demonstrated their frustrations with an air of animalistic sex and violence.

Beneath the furs, Parris had her legs wrapped tightly around his body; sinking her teeth into his neck, clawing the flesh upon his back as they both began to climax with each and every pulsating thrust of their bodies. Powerful contractions of euphoric ecstasy quickly replaced all the frustrations they had previously been forced to endure.

Collapsing upon her delicate petite frame Beorn gasped for air, sweating from physical exertion as the couple embraced one another fatigued yet satisfied. For a brief moment in time, they were living in a blissful dream of peace and harmony, but negative thoughts soon arose, leaving the pair on edge once again. Heavy breathing was slowly replaced with the sounds of an open fire crackling away in the night. The dim lit room fell silent amongst the smoky atmosphere they now reclined in.

"Are you positive you were not followed?" Beorn enquired nervously. His face was plagued with worry, anxiously scanning Parris with his highly alert emerald green eyes. The captivating pigmentation of his iris, emitted a fluorescent like glow as they sat upon his well-defined cheekbones. A masculine chiselled jawline protruded through his impressive facial growth. Beorn’s imposing beard which contained flecks of bronze colouring, complimented his light chestnut brown hair. Braided down the centre of his skull, his hair fell halfway down the length of his spine. Still not yet in his prime, Beorn was already a captivating figure, his pale olive complexion now blushed red from exertion.

"Do you think I would be lying here now if I had?" Parris replied confidently with a mischievous smile, going on to explain the already known situation back at home.

For Parris's father was the legendary thegn, turned great warrior chieftain Ealdorman Erik Bloodaxe.

The settlements great hall was currently being used to celebrate the Eaorl and his men's homecoming. Above all it was being used to celebrate the riches they had plundered from the worshippers of the book. Parris and Beorn had slipped away from the feast in the dead of night, so they could see one another, secretly of course.

For Beorn, son of Ulfric Ulfr came from humble origins, in comparison to his beloved. Raised on his father's farm on the outskirts of the hamlet, a small self-sustainable hide of land bore birth to this young delinquent. Nestled amongst a beautiful woodland clearing, the farm sat on the precious fertile banks of the river. The river was often bountiful with fish and boats could be navigated through the dense impassable forest.

Beorn's elder brother Ulfric who was named after their father, was always destined to inherit the farm. Not only due to the fact that he was the eldest, but he had always been the more suitable candidate of the two. Ulfric always had muck on his hands, a simple plumpish lad with a good heart. He was one of those men who had never been shy of hard work.

Beorn on the other hand, had always seemed destined to have blood on his palms. Looking back in time to his boisterous childhood, it was all too evidently clear. Although he did spend most of his days working on the family farm, he invested the equivalent time and effort each evening to sparring friend and foe. Practising swordplay he fenced, threw axes and chucked spears religiously. Repeating the process each night, until his muscles fatigued became normality.

His old friend Ander, the son of a famed warrior who died in a blood feud, which left immense debts upon his own son's head. Constantly beat Beorn in sparring, until he was literally black and blue with bruising. They would practice with wooden sticks, that had been carved and fashioned into swords and spears, designed specifically for training. They would even risk the wrath of Beorn’s father if they were ever caught, by using his farm tools which angered him dearly. The shear adrenaline of clashing iron tools, seemed much more appealing and realistic to the boys, in comparison to wooden weaponry.

Ander who was taught to fight by his father and uncle from a very young age showed no mercy. His tough love approach to educating Beorn in the art of combat, brought many cuts, bumps and bruises to Beorn's ever-growing muscular frame. But in doing so Beorn learned fast, as his mind and body adapted becoming as one. Developing sharp reflexes, stamina and muscle memory he become increasingly athletic. More importantly, his mind and body became hardened to pain and suffering, a valuable tool in a world, where all living creatures naturally avoided pain and suffering at all cost.

It was from those beatings that the older boy, Ander forged a potential warrior of him. With no land or titles of his own, Beorn would never have any true hopes of Parris's hand in marriage. For noble blood ran through her veins, and she had always been destined to marry a rival chieftain or his relative. This arrangement was often used as a political token of allegiance. However, the couple had plans of their own and had vowed to make one another, husband and wife one day, no matter what cost or danger it may entail. Beorn was a happy adolescent in those days, with no real worries or calling in life. Love and the touch of Parris was the only drum, his naive heart ever truly beat to.

Several moons apart on his first military campaign had only made the bond between himself and Parris stronger. It had also potentially set them upon, the path of happiness as Beorn's name, was now well and truly on the lips of her father. Fighting alongside Eaorl Erik himself, in an attempt to impress the ageing chieftain, he had his chance and took it. For there was no greater honour to be held in the land, than to earn the reputation for oneself, as being a brave and fierce warrior. It was amongst the clashing of iron and blood spilt, that Beorn Ulfr was truly born into this world.

"We better return to the festivities." suggested Beorn while taking a sip of mead. His eyes hypnotically fixed on the naked figure of Parris, who now lounged casually amongst the warm furs. Taking no heed of the seriousness of the situation they were both in, she simply changed the topic of conversation.

"Tell me once more, how you gained the favour of my father?"

"We must get ready with haste Parris, I've already told you. Someone may notice your presence missing."

"Please, Beorn I am begging you, just one more time before we head back. From what you say, surely my father will accept your marriage proposal, will he not?"

Anxious his head sank, for he knew he was fighting a losing battle. Whether it was her divine silver layers of wavy hair or those hypnotic cerulean eyes that enticed his mind to perverted thoughts. He gave up the fight against her will with ease and repeated the tale. He done so in the fashion of a great storyteller from days gone past.

"You could see and hear the sparks of Thunor's hammer lighting up the heavens above, as our ships swayed violently amongst the waves. My only thoughts at this time where if I am swallowed whole by the sea tonight, then that is the will of the god Wade. Low in the sky, the moon lit up a silhouette of landfall, within touching distance of our ships, and I was in no doubt by then that we would survive this perilous and treacherous journey. For what seemed like an eternity amongst the waves, the soles of my feet now stood firmly in the compressed sand. The sun's warmth rising steadily in the sky to the east, I focused all of my attention on an unusually beautiful construction high upon the cliffs." That construction was like nothing Beorn had ever seen before, immense blocks of hand-cut stone, methodically placed on top of one another. The walls stretched as far the eye could see, its towers rising so high, they kissed the clouds above in Beorn's poetic untravelled mind. What kind of power was capable of such engineering? Beorn pondered, The fortification truly staggering his brain with a thousand unanswered questions.

"Everyone told me these buildings were now mostly abandoned ruins, once inhabited by an ancient power they called Rome. They also spoke of more spectacular buildings, full of unguarded treasures inhabited by strange men in robes. These strange beings were said to worship a man on a cross, whom they call Christ. It was believed by your father that these buildings had long been abandoned due to past raids. Warring factions of Saxon’s, Angles, Jutes and indigenous Britons had been competing for dominance for many years now.

“Your father decided we should head deeper inland, in search of Jute stronghold’s to raid and plunder. Before we could finish beaching and unloading the boats, the ground beneath me began to shudder. My confusion was soon nullified with the sight of armed men on horseback, charging down the beach towards us at a great pace, our men began to scramble for weapons and shields with great haste. Amidst the carnage and chaos, I stood still with awe, for I had never seen such a glorious sight; men draped head to toe in iron and leather, galloping on horseback like a swarm of bees into battle."

"Then what happened?" Parris demanded eagerly with childlike excitement.

"My ears were overwhelmed with the battle cries of men, soon followed by the screams and surreal sounds of iron clashing through shield and bone. As the sands quickly turned red with blood, adrenaline soared through my veins as I found myself, deeply immersed in my first ever battle. Riders galloped with fury, swinging, chopping, slashing as I bobbed and weaved under sword and shield stabbing, cutting, tearing flesh apart, blood splattered and sprayed as I trudged through piss, vomit and shit.

“I noticed an unmanned horse knocking your father to the ground, surrounded by foe, I ran to your fathers' aid. My lungs burning, screaming for oxygen as my heart pounded out of my chest. I drove an axe through the skull of his would-be killer, sending brain and bone fragments ricocheting through the air. Helping him to his feet as I fought off more aggressors in a frenzied state of mania, I never left his side until the battle was won.

“He kept me close to his side for the rest of our expedition, where I demonstrated my skills and bravery on several different occasions in the skirmishes that followed. Coin had passed our hands to raid and fight for one of the local west Saxon chieftains, in his attempts to reign supreme over his Jutish neighbours. As mercenaries, we most definitely earned our wages in blood money. Briton made my bones, and your father fully appreciated my efforts. He kept me close to him and treat me like one of his own blood relations for whole expedition."

Parris's smile could have lit up the whole world, as she leapt out of bed into Beorn's arms.

"Your now a proven warrior with some wealth of your own, from the shares of plunder are you not? Surely our desires are no more a naive dream are they?"

But before Beorn could even respond, the brief silence between them, was broken from yelling outside the family home.

"Beorn! Beorn Ulfr!" With no time to react, Parris simply buried her head into Beorn’s chest in the hope of disclosing her identity. She used Beorn's body to cover what modesty she could. With her back to the doorway, the voice grew louder as Cnut's brother, Leif, entered with a sinister smirk upon his face. A smile of wicked intent upon realising what he had just walked in on.

"Eaorl Erik has been looking for you." Leif said humorously, "But now I understand why you have slipped away from the festivities."

Leif and his brother where Parris's father's right-hand men and most loyal subjects. Both equally scary individuals with ruthlessly cold and calculating minds. The pair of brothers together made an unusually brutal combination. Leif unnerved Beorn at that moment with his piercing, reptilian eyes, that instantaneously made the colour drain from his face. Unsure if he was referring to himself or Parris, he chanced upon Leif not identifying her naked body from behind, finally plucking up the courage to reply.

"Sorry I was distracted by the obvious, I will come right away. Is everything okay?"

Leif's grin grew more sinister, unnerving him even more. That creep could spook evil spirits thought Beorn, but he feared no man, for Woden only respected the brave, not the weak he told himself, searching for reassurance within his own mind. But at this moment in time, Beorn stood shook, for the thought of losing Parris was too much pain to bear.

"Who knows? I am merely a messenger." Leif replied as he began to turn and walk out of the doorway. "Hurry Eaorl Erik is waiting for you boy."

Time stood still before Beorn and Parris began to react to the situation. Her legs trembled nervously, palms sweating profusely she began to pace around the room, retrieving her scattered items of clothing.

"Do you think he identified me Beorn? Oh Woden what shall we do?" she pleaded.

"I am not sure, but we are about to find out." replied Beorn who quickly prepared to leave for the great hall. His whole complexion was now surely that of a ghost. Before leaving without any thought of his future fate in terms of life and death. Beorn guzzled down the last drop of mead, fully appreciating its warmth and grace, as the sweet liquid ran down his throat. Already under the influence, this last guzzle gave Beorn the necessary courage he required, to ease the tensions in his mind.

The great halls air was intoxicating; the potent fumes of vintage ale, smoke and slowly roasted sacrifices, filled everyone's lungs with delight. The Skalds and musicians in turn filled everybody's ears with intense poetry and trance-like musical pieces. An intensity that took one's mind and soul unwillingly, on a spiritual journey to another dimension. The party would last for several days, and many casualties would fall victim to the binges, games and feats of strength.

Amongst the revellers donning their finest fabrics and jewellery, Eaorl Erik sat at the head of the main table. Spirits were high as Erik overlooked the unholy antics, as they proceeded to unfold, before the very windows of his soul.

Upon entering the great hall, Beorn felt like a condemned man about to meet his maker in the afterlife. Anxiously making his way through the rowdy crowds, his mindset was the polar opposite of those lost in the celebrations. What poison was Leif pouring into his elder brother Cnut's ear? Contemplated Beorn.

Cnut like his brother was a mountain of a man and the most dangerous of the pair by far. Contemplating the negative thoughts racing through his mind, only added to the noxious tensions he was now feeling. His heart raced uncontrollably and sweat formed on his forehead and brow, as he began to overheat under stress. Slowly making the dreaded approach to Eaorl Erik's table, a lamb to the slaughter, Beorn took one last deep breath of freedom.

"Is there something that you need to tell me?" Eaorl Erik insinuated, as soon as Beorn caught his glance.

"Lor...d." Stuttering lost for words his inner child was now exposed. Negative thoughts invaded Beorn’s mind, Surely his whole world was now about to fall apart he thought to himself. Either the victim of bad luck or mere stupidity his mind concluded.

"For you look as white as a ghost, are you feeling okay son?"

"Yes Lord, I may have had a little too much to drink though." Replied Beorn with humour, one last brazen attempt at trickery. Unfortunately Ivor and Leif burst into laughter upon the statement, mockingly challenging Beorn to confess the reason for his disappearance.

"Illness? It seems young Beorn is more likely to be exhausted, from fucking some fine young thrall lord. Leif has just told me how he walked in on the lad." Chuckled Cnut with sinister intent, prodding and poking, hoping Beorn would take the bait and bite. "Was she as sweet as my brother described? Come tell the Eaorl all about this sweet little whore."

Feeling the burning sensation of rage flowing across his whole body, he tried with all of the will he could muster, to stay calm and bite his tongue. Beorn was sure the whites of his angry wild eyes most definitely betrayed him, giving Cnut all the acknowledgement he needed to feel satisfied. Knowing he had successfully struck a nerve, the small pleasures of a bully, had left Cnut sitting content with himself.

"Stop toying with the lad." Eaorl Erik pronounced with grace and mercy. "Come drink with us, for the night is still young Beorn Ulfr."

Cnut and Leif both gave him an unscrupulous look of bitter resentment. Taking no heed though, focusing all attention upon Parris who now entered the great hall as he sat, her face plagued with distress, Beorn felt overcome with a sensation of unease. The Eaorl took note of her entrance, portraying an unusually keen interest, leaving Beorn wondering if he knew. His attention was soon drawn away, caught off guard by the unexpected arrival of an old serpentine.

This serpent was well known to Eaorl Erik's people, for the many unfortunate encounters they had been forced to endure in the past. Half snake, half rat Beorn imagined Eaorl Erik had long fantasised of strangling this pathetic weasel to death. Draugr was the epitome of bad news. This trickster worked as an assassin for Erik's rivals during the war, most notably for Erik's most bitter enemy, Eaorl Kendryk. Now Kendryk's most trusted emissary, Draugrs unwelcome presence, surely brought forth unfortunate news.

"Draugr!" rolled off Eaorl Erik's tongue with vicious intent. "What brings you here?"

"Reconciliation Lord Erik, my master sends me with gifted words of peace."

"Peace or treachery Draugr? speak your poison."

"Our troubles have long past Lord Erik. We have been at peace for many seasons have we not? My masters trust in you has grown evidently during this time, as no peace deal has ever been broken. He now wishes to harvest that trust into a more substantially valuable alliance."

"Continue..." Spoke Eaorl Erik, as he analysed the serpents every word with intense suspicion and scepticism.

"Good land to farm is far and few between, this alone has led to many disputes and conflicts throughout the motherlands. We face harassment from the east and a spiritual threat from the Franks in the west. Our wealth and technology grow from expedition, yet food supplies dwindle. Eaorl Kendryk no longer has an interest in sailing, simply to risk life as muscle for hire. He plans to secure a foothold in Britain for himself and his own people.

"He wishes to cleanse the shores of the weak Chieftains who have already settled there. These so called Ealdormen no longer follow the old ways, they now worship the one they call Christ. They pay us to kill on their behalf, strengthening their own positions at our expense. Kendryk believes there is an opportunity not be missed, a chance to Secure lands we can all farm for the greater good of our own tribes. Divided equally between the pair of you of course."

"Why does Eaorl Kendryk need me, his old foe? Surely other Ealdorman could be more easily persuaded into an allegiance?"

"To join him as an ally of course. Not only this, but he offers you his Eldest son Algar, as a future husband to your eldest daughter Parris. A symbol of our eternally loyal alliance."

Eaorl Erik sat briefly in silence, carefully contemplating a response. A smile rose upon his face, as he remade eye contact with Draugr.

"You mean he fears I will invade his lands while he is occupied overseas?" Seeking a hint of retaliation, Erik analysed Draugr’s reaction and response. But the serpent did not bite, for he held a natural talent for deception.

"My lord wishes nothing more than to rise above any petty disagreements, of days gone past. He simply hopes that we can work together, and achieve much greater things. It will be no small feat indeed, so who better an ally than the great Erik Bloodaxe, the only man to have defeated my lord in battle?"

Eaorl Erik, Cnut nor Leif let their thoughts and emotions betray their deepest thoughts. Beorn on the other hand could not hide his disgust and disbelief, the very thought of his woman marrying another man, flipped his stomach violently upside down. Scowling at Draugr, both Eaorl Erik and Draugr himself picked up on Beorn's dismay, both taking mental notes for future reference out of curiosity.

"Well Draugr you must be tired, help yourself to food and drink. I will call for you in the next few days with my answer. For such a great decision will take time for me to reflect and come to any definite final conclusion."

"Thank you, Lord."

Waiting for the serpent to disappear into the crowd, Eaorl Erik turned himself and whispered into Beorn's ear.

"I will soon excuse myself for a piss, go enjoy the feast and wait for me to leave. Then come and meet me at the stables, we must talk in private."

Beorn gave a subtle gesture of understanding, well aware of prying eyes. Draugr's marriage proposal had made his blood boil with a raging torrent of hate. Feeling unnerved by what Cnut and Leif may - or may not know, he did not even think to question what the Eaorl wanted from him. Simply rising, Beorn headed straight to the nearest thrall for more ale and mead to drown his sorrows. He scanned the hall once again for Parris as he walked back through the drunken crowds. Racing thoughts, dictated a strong will to inform her of the marriage proposal. Her reassurance, that all is not lost, was all he needed to hear at this moment in time.

Continue Reading
Further Recommendations

woodzskye: this is amazing! dangerously amazing! i read it and couldn’t put the book down. i love how it has appropriate amount of fluff (lots and lots of them!!) and there isn’t any unnecessary dramas. its plot is fluid and i love the characters. of course especially leo and nova, these two cutiepies! inno...

virginiaarreguin18: I have read both part one and part two of this series so far, and I really enjoy it. I would recommend my sister to read it, I feel that she will enjoy it very much. Thank you for your books, they are amazing and I can't wait to read more.

Hydea: This is the best story of MC rider I hv ever read. I can read it over and over again. This is so good. The writer is really really really talented.

Cristal Bollinger: Good read for a mafia story

ashleywinings: That was a beautiful story!! Keep up the great work

pattymeador225: Love the book

Fiona Moolla: I really enjoyed the characters and the sense of humor. Overall a lovely easy read

famig03: Good story. Loved that it was a wee bit different from the usual MC stories going around. Keep it up, I'm looking forward to the next book.🤩

Pam: I absolutely love this Author. Her books have me staying up reading hours after I should have gone to bed. I will continue to read and follow her work!!!!

More Recommendations

Ariana: This was a good a little short for my liking but then again this is supposed to be short story. The plot was good and you did a great job fitting all you did in with the little time you had. Really really great job! Also love all of the personalities of your characters.

Cheri Dewar: I love this book. Mac is my favorite of all of the older gentlemen of the club. All of these books are great with the exception of Lorenzo. For some unknown reason I just couldn't get into that one book. Other than that This book as well as the others in the series are so good that I ended up bin...

GoldenQueenBizzaro: This is one of my favorite series.I love how you have created a whole new world were we can feel love the ups and downs of life and how things can be different.Also love the concept of family very multicultural and very accepting.Overall a beautiful serie with lots of potential for printing novels

The Mind: I love this story. It kept me up all night, and such a page turner. Hilarious and lovely couple. Keep it up.

Daniella: I got sucked into this from the first chapter

About Us

Inkitt is the world’s first reader-powered publisher, providing a platform to discover hidden talents and turn them into globally successful authors. Write captivating stories, read enchanting novels, and we’ll publish the books our readers love most on our sister app, GALATEA and other formats.