Leticia led Iskander, Nancy and the Shumkarja warriors to where the Silver Fleet awaited them. As they neared the entrance to the courtyard a thunderous roar erupted further down the hall, followed by a series of grunts. They turned to find several heavily armed orcs rushing toward them. Nancy screamed.
“Shield your eyes!” Leticia called and the room flashed with a light that left the creatures thrashing on the floor clutching their faces.
The group hurried into the courtyard where the sun started to glint on the hulls of the fleet as if in welcome.
“Wait, where is Alaric and Isabel?” Nancy asked as the Shumi boarded the ships.
Isabel leaned over the railing and waved. “Waiting for some people to get their butts on board!”
“Isabel!” Leticia cried, embracing her daughter as she climbed aboard. “How are you, nena?”
“Never better, ma!” Isabel beamed.
“Well come on then,” Nancy giggled enthusiastically while hugging Isabel, “let’s kick this pig!”
“Your excellency!” A young goblin rushed to the throne room, frantic.
Torquil lounged on the throne watching the pale lithe body of a Fairie as she danced before him. Her deep purple locks stuck out wildly from her head and her delicate wings glittered as they moved about her. Save for the iron shackle that bound her to the floor nothing hid her rosy complexion from his intense gaze and the king was looking forward to exploring every inch before devouring her. The dark flashing eyes above high cheekbones in her gaunt face told him his conquest and subsequent meal would be a feisty one. Good, he liked them feisty. Torquil placed the toe of his boot on his servant’s forehead and shoved him to the floor.
“I thought I made it clear I was not to be disturbed?”
“Yes sire, no sire, only,” the goblin swallowed, “we’re under attack!”
Torquil slowly drew his prized short sword from its sheath, relishing the sound of metal sliding against metal and the melodious ring as the tip of the blade sang of its freedom. The blade was white steel, the sharpest in the land, and polished to where he could see himself in it.
“If you so desire to amuse me by offering your throat to be cut, you could at least bring me some interesting news. We are always under attack!”
“Yes Milord, but the Alliance has the Silver Fleet!”
“You bore me.” Torquil yawned, leaned forward and plunged his blade into his minion’s throat and out again.
He licked the blade clean as the sounds of gurgling died away. The doors of the room burst open, causing music and dancing to stop. An orc clomped in and slammed his fist against his chest as he bowed. “Majesty, the prisoners have escaped and have taken the Silver Fleet to the border. Enemy forces are breaking through.”
“What?” Torquil leapt to his feet. “Double our forces, use the humans as shield and cannon fodder if you have not already! Where is that damned sorceress?”
King and soldier parted ways at the entrance of the throne room and Torquil stormed into Phaedra’s bedchamber. He found her lounging in a settee in a corner of the room, studying a small volume with her faithful manservant at her feet. Kerwin flinched and bared his teeth at him.
“Steady Kerwin.” Phaedra purred as she closed her book. “Torquil, don’t you have a legion or two to command?”
“What good will they do us now? While you lay here reading, our prisoners have escaped with the fleet!” He screamed as he stormed towards her. He stopped short when her manservant growled and advanced toward him.
“Control that beast of yours, madam, or I shall muzzle him permanently!” The Goblin King snarled as he glared at Kerwin.
“He is merely protecting his mistress from the lunatic screaming at her in her own chambers.” She replied coolly.
She waved Kerwin away and he reluctantly left the room. She stood up slowly from her chair and staggered before turning to the king. Blood had pooled along her chest and a red line cut sharply down the front of her ordinarily pristine gown. It was then that Torquil noticed a bloody sword lying at the foot of the chair. He whistled. “What happened to you?”
“As you said, the prisoners have escaped. My horde has been dispatched to find and kill the prisoners before they reach the Silver Fleet so here I sit, healing from the unfortunate event that unfolded here.”
“Unfortunate event? You useless dried up hag! The Alliance is attacking, we are lost!”
A tremendous crash shook the palace and in the distance came a symphony of horns heralding both alarm and attack.
“They broke through?” Phaedra exclaimed, hurrying to the balcony. “Impossible!”
For as far as the eye could see the ground was swarming with figures locked in battle. Dragons whirled in the sky, gnashing and clawing at each other, while in the distance the dying sunlight glinted off something silver in the sky. Phaedra seethed. She whirled around and snarled, jabbing Torquil in the chest as she edged him back into the room. “How could you let this happen?”
“I?” the Goblin King sneered. “I shall command a mighty and powerful fighting force, you said. The riches of Abiloth are just within my grasp, you said. The Crystal Palace itself will crumble, the world will be on its knees, you said!”
His eyes blazed with a cold fire as he continued, “I have provided you with everything the job required. Everything you asked for I gave. I held up my end of the bargain and in return you gave me nothing!”
“Self-rutting turd! Did you expect me to train your armies for you as well?”
The Goblin King gripped her arms roughly. “I expect when a deal is struck all parties honor the agreement.”
“Unhand me!” she growled.
“Not until I take what is mine!”
With a strength Phaedra didn’t expect, Torquil flung her onto the bed. He was on her in a flash, pinning her wrists over her head with one hand and tearing at her gown with the other. He laughed as she struggled beneath him and she could feel him growing hard against her thigh. He ran his cold scaly hand along her form and cupped her breast, closing his eyes and moaning. Phaedra spit in his face and he grinned. “Oh, this is going to be fun!”
“Once you have been sated, find the deepest cave you know. Seek out the darkest depths of the farthest ocean and get comfortable.” She hissed, still struggling. “For while you are fortunate that I am still recovering from my injuries, know I will have your head for this!”
“Easy now, you’ll make me come too early!” He chuckled, undoing his trousers.
“So business as usual then?”
Torquil slapped her face for the remark before reaching down to tear away the rest of her gown, freeing her to receive his long scaly quivering rod. With an unearthly roar, the doors of the room splintered as Kerwin burst in and tackled the Goblin King to the floor.
“You no touch mistress ever!” Kerwin roared and lowered his head.
There was a sickening crunch and Torquil let out an agonized scream as Kerwin raised his head to reveal a long scaly rod quivering between his teeth. The manservant suddenly stiffened and fell to one side with a jewel encrusted gold hilt sticking out of his chest.
Battling anger and astonishment, Phaedra smoothed her hands over her body, restoring her gown to flow over her curves even as the wound from Prince Alaric’s sword finished healing. She crossed the room and looked down at the lifeless golden eyes that stared back while blood pooled thickly from the hole between the Goblin King’s legs.
“Was it good for you?” She scoffed.
The arrogant smirk that usually resided on his face was replaced with an expression of terror and pain. Good, she thought, that was how she liked her men. Phaedra looked over at Kerwin and to her surprise found he looked to be at peace. Torquil’s member had fallen from his mouth and if she didn’t know better she could swear the beast was smiling. She sighed. Kerwin was a good servant and would be hard to replace. She looked up at the dark sky. It was time to return to Izan. Once there she could create another Kerwin, a better one this time. She would be sure not to let the next one fall in love with her. It was far too inconvenient to keep making manservants every time one was stupid enough to get himself killed.