Changing my future

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Chapter 14 - New companions

I was not going to go back to his holdfast, I could not go back to the holdfast while all of my kin rode to battle, I was going to track the northmen and see how many men were coming back, it took me a whole day to find their tracks, the further north I went the colder it got, I had stopped to rest for the night, I decided that I would not light a fire as it would attract to much unwanted attention but as I sat huddled against a tree I saw a fire through the trees but it was not the northmen it was the wrong way, I took the dagger out of my waistband and walked slowly through the woods and towards the fire, i hid behind a bush and listened to them

“It looks like Madare is finally going to face Ultred” one said

Ultred is a tyrant and that is why we left” said another one

“Latna this has nothing to do with us,” the first said

Dranian do you not think that I do not Know that, Madare would kill us if he found us but Ultred would do far worse” Latna said

“Madare has nothing against us” Latna said

“Shhhhhhhhh” said the third that had been with them

“What?” Latna asked

“There is someone here” he replied

“Who Molka?” Darnian asked

“I don’t know” Molka replied and all three of them stood up and drew their weapons and I decided that I would go and face them, after I they had a fire and I was damn cold

“I will not hurt you” I said stepping out into the area they were sitting have already put my dagger away

“Who are you?” Molka asked

“It does not matter who I am” I replied

“Why are you here?” Latna asked

“I am tracking Madare” I replied

“Why are you tracking him?” Molka asked

“He wants to attack my lord’s holdfast” I replied

“And” Latna said

“I want to follow him and find out how many of them there are” I replied

“Stay here with us” Dranian said “you look cold” he added

“I cannot I need to find them and see how many there are, I need to get the information back” I replied

“We will help you to track them, the north gets very cold and very dangerous” Latna said

“I do not need any help or any protection” I replied

“You do” Molka said

“I do not need your help, I could have killed you all already” I replied “just because I am a woman, it does not mean that I need help or protection, you should never underestimate anyone until you know what they can do” I added

“Then what do you want?” Molka asked

“To warm for a while before I go and track them” I said

“Join us at the fire for a beer then” Latna said smiling at me

“Do not get any ideas or you will lose your heads” I said and sat down picking up some of their beer, I sat there for a while warming up and drinking the beer, once I was warm I decided it was time to go

“I must be going, it is time for me to continue my journey” I said and stood up

“We are coming with you and you have no choice” Dranian said and they cleared the camp, it seemed that I would have three more with me on this journey, we spent the next day following them to their home, we stayed in the forest surrounding it

“I need to know what they are planning?” I said

“Why?” Latna asked

“Because I want the information so I can go back and warn the others” I replied

“You are a slave” Latna sai

“I am but I was born one of you and I cannot let these men kill my kin” I replied

“You should let them do it, they are better than the king we have” Molka said

“Why would you say that?” I asked

Ultred is a tyrant and a villain it is why we left” Molka replied

Ultred is your king and you are all traitors” I said

“I am a traitor I could not stand by and follow his orders anymore” Molka replied

“Why?” I asked curiously, I wanted to know why these men would abandon their king and live in the wild away from everyone of their kin

“Because we wouldn’t” Molka replied I really wanted to know but it seemed that they were not going to tell me

“I wish I could go into their village” I said

“Go then you can pretend to be a slave” Dranian said

“I cannot I have previously been their captive and they all know what I look like” I replied

“I will go” MOlka said taking off his weapons and his armour

“I cannot ask you to do that i know what they will do to you if they capture you I have been through it already” I said

“You did not ask I offered” Molka said and walked off towards the village

“Sorry about him” Latna said

“It is okay” I replied

“He hates that we are away from family but he knows that it is best to stay away from them, he just does not know how to handle it very well” Latna said

“That I can understand” I replied because I did understand, I wanted so much to be with Lafrim but knew that this was the best place for me to be

“How is it that you were born one of us but not raised one of us?” Latna asked

“My father did not want a girl as his first born and wanted me killed but the man that he ordered to do it refused and smuggled me away” I replied

“Your father sounds like a nice man” Dranian laughed

“Yes the perfect gentlemen” I replied laughing as well

“Any child is better than no child” Dranian said

“Where were you raised?” Latna asked

“The ship that I was smuggled away on left me on a small island were the only people that lived there were holymen, they raised me until Lafrim Aldredson and his men captured me and brought me back home” I replied

“Aldred the King’s commander?” he asked

“Yes that is Lafrim’s father” I replied

“He is a good man and tried to stop the king but was threatened with death so had no choice but to follow his orders” Latna said

“He is a good man he has saved me a few times” I said

“Although I never met Lafrim” Latna said

“Lafrim is very much like his father when he hasn’t got his head up his arse” I said and smiled thinking about him

“He lets you talk like that?” Latna asked

“I would never talk like that in front of him,” I said and Molka came back to us

“They are marching tomorrow, they want revenge in Ultred for all the death” Molka said

“They are going to war over the death of 15 men” I said

“You have no idea do you?” Molka asked

“About what?” I asked

“About your bloody king” Molka replied

“If you mean Ultred he is not my king, I am and I am not one of you, I was raised differently to how you all were” I replied

“The king is not what you believe” Molka said

“Why?” I asked

“You really don’t have any idea why Madare is so angry at Ultred, it was only a matter of time before he attacked and took his revenge” Molka said

“Will you just tell me why?” I snapped

“Ultred has been raising the northern lands for years, stealing food and gold, he has been killing the wives and children of Madares kin to stop them attacking back, Ultred has become very rich from the deaths of our northern kin, there was once a peace between the north and south until Ultred lost a child and became a mad man only wanting wealth” Molka said

“How do you know?” I asked

“We were some of the men that he sent north the raid their lands, we did not mind when it was to steal food and gold but when we were ordered to start killing the women and the children, we could not do it they were innocent, others spoke out and tried to stop the king but Ultred had them killed, our best chance was to run at least that way we would live” Molka replied

“Why did you not kill Ultred and take his place?” I asked

’The king has many of his many wealthy people and they would have killed us” Molka replied

“Ssssshhhhhhh” said Dranian

“What is it?” Latna asked and we all heard the sound of a horse riding towards us, everyone of us drew our swords waiting to see who it was, as the horse got closer to us I could see that it was Alfred

“Lower your sword, I know him” I said putting my sword away

“My lady” Alfred said stopping in front of me

“Alfred why are you here?” I asked

“Aldred sent me my lady” he replied

“Why are you calling her my lady, she is but a servant” Molka asked

“she “ Alfred went to start saying but I interrupted

“Do not tell them a damn thing” I said in english so that only he could understand me

“She what?” Dranian asked “and what did she say to you?” he added

“I told him to hold his tongue” I replied

“She what?” Molka asked pointing his sword at Alfred

“She is the woman that my lord Lafrikm chose” Alfred replied

“Is that all?” Molka asked

“It is” I replied butting in

“Why then are you here?” Latna asked

“Because they want information and cannot spare any men to come and get” Alfred replied and we began to make some food

“Why are you here?” I asked in english when we had all sat down to eat

“Aldred, Lafrim told him that you had gone back to the holdfast but he knew that you would follow the northmen and he knew that you would not sit and wait” Alfred replied

“Why are you talking in that tongue? You are one of us?” Molka asked

“As I told them early I was born as one of you but raised as one of them, I am a child of two nations” I replied

“What did you say to him?” Molka asked

“I asked him why he was here” I replied

“And why os he here?” Latna asked

“To keep an eye on her m lord” Alfred said

“Not to protect her?” asked Latna

“Protection is not what she needs” Alfred replied

“Why not?” Dranian asked

“Because if you have not seen it, I am sure that you will see it soon she does not need protection and can do that herself” Alfred said and we all heard horses riding out

“What they are leaving early” I said jumping up

“That is not enough to be all of them” Molka said

“So where are they going?” I asked

“No idea” Molka said

“I need to follow them, thank you for your help and it was a pleasure to meet you” I said and got up and started to get ready to leave

“We will prepare” Latna said

“I cannot ask you to come and I am going back to the southern kingdom and if you enter there you will die” I said

“Not if we don’t go near Ultred” Dranian said

“If you wish to come then I will not stop you but I am sure that the path I take will lead only to death” I said and we all finished tidying the camp and preparing to follow them, we rode off and began to follow the northmen, for three days we rode for hours only stopping for a while to eat, drink and have a short sleep, it was on the fourth day that I realised where they were going

“They are riding to lafrim’s holdfast” I said to Alfred

“No one is there” Alfred replied

“Are they all still at Aldred’s?” I asked

“Yes” Alfred replied

“What about Lafrim and the others?” I asked

“No they would have ridden to the king by now” Aldred replied

“Then it is Aldred’s that we need to ride to, when they find that there is no one at Larfim’s they will keep riding and Aldred’s is next” I replied

“Let us go then” Latna said

“No, this is where we part ways, I cannot ask you to defend a place that is not your own, especially when only wives and slaves remain” I said

“You are not asking, we have offered” Latna said so we rode straight to Aldred’s holdfast, when we arrived we put the horses in the barn and walked towards the house, I went into the house first I could not just walk in with strangers

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