The Demon Wolf (Book 1 of The Devil and the Huntsman)

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Chapter 56: A Plan to End a Battle

“Where the bloody blazes are you off to, Julius? And where did Erica go?” Harald asked.

“Didn’t I tell you already that I am keeping her safe? Have I not told you anything about making sure she is protected?” Julius asked.

“And didn’t I tell you to leave her alone? You may be a legendary warrior, but you still stand with me in this battle. Let me tell you this, you have a wife, and I have a wife. You have a daughter, and I have a son. We both have reasons to protect those we care about and now is the time to prove to them we will make sure they stay alive. I’ll also let you know this, my wife is not for the taking, and you will not lay a single scratch on my son.”

“Who said I am going to take your wife for my own? She will be with Brant, where they will both stay away from the night creatures. As long as you and I are alive, they will not take down these walls. I will join you to protect your family, defeat the demon leaders, and all who stand with them. Anyone who tries to stop us shall be made an example of.”

Harald and Julius knew that there was no point in speaking with each other when they both knew that they had a great battle to win. They both needed to fulfill their duty in defending Loftain from the demons, and they both needed to survive and live on. Then Julius walks towards Harald to discuss his idea of winning the battle because he could not wait any longer. None of them could wait for the sun to go all the way down and have every candle of the palace light up. Julius and Harald rushed to the entrance doors to join the knights on the walls.

“Harald, I think I have a plan to end this battle. But I need you to hear me out. If you don’t know by now, you never will,” Julius said.

“What is your plan, Julius? Of course, I won’t share it with anyone,” Harald said.

“The castle of Midland. The architect of this battle. The ruler of the castle. He is the one who brought them here. He is the reason behind all of this. He used his dark magic to make as many demons as possible to hunt us down.”

“Impossible. The demon king of that castle knows full well that we are not to be toyed with. If what you say is true, then he has now showed himself upon his enemies.”

“This demon king. What he wants is me. He must’ve known I have dominated Stonethorn and made him my servant. He must want me to test my might. I must go to him and kill him before he kills more of these people.”

“If you’re going there, then I am going with you. I must be with you to see his demise at our hands.”

“Not a chance. You are needed with your men to defeat every demon before they try to defeat us. Even though I gave you my word that I will defend your family, I must go to the castle and lift its curse.”

Harald understood that Julius had a point in having a way to defeat the leader that plagued Midland for twenty years. He also knew that he and Julius were just young men when they heard of Lancelot’s death at the demon’s hands. Watching the demon king die by Julius’s sword and Harald’s sword would prove to them that King Lancelot’s sacrifice was not in vain. He also needed to be sure that his wife and son are still drawing breath. He would never forgive himself if one of the night creatures went up to them and tore them apart.

“We may not be brothers, but we share the same blood. You and I know this, and so does King Lancelot. If we both defeat the demon king, it will give me as much relief as I will ever need to see my father’s killer beg for his miserable life,” Harald said.

“Then, I will protect you. Only one of us will make him taste his blood, and the other shall deliver the finishing move. Do we have a deal?” Julius asked. He gave Harald one chance to have his family name be restored and make sure his father’s legacy is continued.

The earl had all kinds of ideas running around in his head, and he wanted to refuse all of them. The thought of defeating a demon king and taking over the kingdom clouded his soul. Then Julius makes Harald come back to his senses and be sure of their victory against the demons.

“Harald, let’s go. Your people are waiting for you,” Julius said.

“Of course,” Harald said. And so, he follows Julius towards the front doors and continues to wonder if it will all be worth it.

Julius’s idea of taking back the castle gave Harald more satisfaction than seeing his city be won for himself. Julius needed more time to think about how it will be done before he can drag Harald into all of this. Both of them were very ambitious and had their reasons for ruling above their people. The citizens of Midland had their fates sealed on what must happen if the victor wins the battle. Both of them were walking outside to get to the walls where everyone is waiting for their leaders.

It appeared as if everyone and everything in Loftain had evacuated to somewhere else, and the entire city felt empty. Every person who lived in the town immediately left their homes and went to a place where the demons will never find them. Julius and Harald made it towards the walls where every knight is standing on either the walls or behind the door. They all had their swords ready to be used on demon flesh; they were all ready to sacrifice themselves for the safety of Midland. Julius and Harald walked up the stairs and reached the very top, and they both got to the center of the doors to watch the landscape.

They were all waiting for the moon to appear in the sky, and they all waited for their earl to address them. Harald turns around and looks at every man who stared at him to hear his last words before the battle begins. Julius stood there and watched a massive army of demons march to the walls and have their swords ready to be used. Julius looked at his house from a considerable distance and knew that no creature laid their hands on it. For a moment, he was relieved and satisfied that his wife and daughter were still alive, but he did not know if they would live long enough from the madness.

Then Harald spoke to all of them, saying, “We have fought valiantly against the night for twenty years. But this land is still not ours—the demonic army advances, ready to butcher every one of us. But we will not die under their rule. We do not serve the darkness. We will sally forty on the battlefield and take this land for our own. You fight for Midland! You fight for King Lancelot!”

All the knights held onto their swords, and they held them up in the air and cheered for the earl and their commander. As they cheered, they could hear the horns of the demons sound all across the city and across the landscape. The knights stopped making sounds as they listened to the noises of the monsters increase. They could hear the night creatures cling to their swords and walk on the road leading to the city’s entrance. It was when the dark clouds started gathering around them, and the moon shines in the night sky.

One of the demon leaders walked even closer to the doors and watched as all the humans pointed their weapons at his face.

Then, the demon said to them, “We have prepared for this day to come. We have the ultimate demon slayer to thank for giving us as much strength as we need to come to you all. We are here to finish what we have started and fulfill that which we do. This man... he may have dominated King Stonethorn, but that will not stop us from conquering you and your dying kingdom. You will know and fear our power. Your souls will bow down to us forever!”

Most of the demons who held their swords began making them light on fire, and they had dark magic to assist them in the battle. The knights did not expect the night creatures to have such mighty power to use as the battle begins.

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