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The velcan warriors, p.1
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       The Velcan Warriors, p.1

           Nseyen Stanley Bassey
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The Velcan Warriors

  By N. Stanley Bassey

  Walter, the old but nonetheless menacing looking chief of Velca stood tall as he glared at the four figures before him.

  “What are your names?” he demanded in a harsh tone.

  “Themus from the Bakiti clan” came the cool and firm voice of a tall muscle-bound man with thick black hair hanging over broad shoulders.

  “Isendy from the Silent Finger” spoke the hooded man next to Themus. He had a slow Slytherin voice that could easily make the skin crawl.

  “Clauton from the Seckta clan” spoke the small third figure in a voice not dissimilar to the former. He also was cloaked.

  “Hlare from the Instantal clan” came the alluring voice of the fourth character. She was a curious combination of brawn and beauty and had her long hair stylishly folded behind her head.

  “You know why you were summoned here?” The Chief continued in his severe tone after their brief introduction.

  “My beloved daughter has been kidnapped by the accursed Salmantos for one of their horrid rituals. Just imagine the audacity of those fools…”

  Chief Walter broke into a furious fit for a moment and after recomposing himself continued;

  “As you know, numbers count for nothing against the Salmantos and that is why I have selected the best warriors in each tribe of my village. Hlare and Themus, you are both frontal fighters, Clauton, you are a master of infiltration and you Isendy are a skilled monk. This means the group possesses all that is required for the task.

  They will be at River Gultis in the hilly regions, twenty three miles from our village for they perform all their rituals there. The ritual will be held at noon tomorrow. You have till then to rescue her.”

  “NOW GO!”

                                                                        - - -

  Forty minutes later, as the four warriors sprinted together out of familiar territory and towards wilderness the voice of the village chief still bore fresh on their minds. They were fully aware of what failure meant; four spikes will be specially decorated with the heads of the greatest fighters in the land. This rescue was very significant to the king for he loved his daughter dearly.

  The quadruple were at even odds; the man and woman running at the edges looked stout and seasoned whereas the two cloaked ones at the centre were somewhat frail looking; it was a wonder how they managed to match the pace of the other two. Themus carried a single weapon; a hefty double-handed, double-edged sword strapped to his back, Hlare bore a small scimitar on the side of each hip and a large sturdy bow along with dozens of arrows at her back. No weapon was visible on either Isendy or Clauton, no doubt Clauton bore weapons beneath his cloak. As for Isendy, his weapon was his mind; decades of secluded meditation had imbued him with different peculiar abilities all emanating from his mind.

  Suddenly, Isendy increased pace and ran ahead of the others and then abruptly stretched out both arms to halt the group. They were now in a meadow; the designated hills could be seen afar off.

  “What is it?” Themus enquired in a hushed voice.

  Isendy did not answer; he instead bent over and placed his right palm on the grass. In this position, he continued pacing around haphazardly. Then he stopped, stood upright and addressed the other three in his hissing voice.

  “The Salmantos have set up an invisible sensory field around this perimeter. The field starts just at that point” Isendy said, pointing to the ground beside a tree twelve feet away.

  “If we cross that point we’ll be instantly detected by the Salmantos”

  Hlare looked at him stupendously “The Salmantos are still many miles away. Are you saying they can detect us from that far off?”

  “These people possess the kind of power that can” Isendy answered, his face was so hooded that only his nose and mouth were visible. 

  “Then there’s no way we can reach them without detection” Themus concluded.

  “There is” Isendy breathed. He shut his eyes and raised both arms skywards. After about ten seconds of silence, sparkling silvery powder of some sort suddenly appeared a few feet above them, fell over them and unto the turf below, and then vanished as suddenly as it had appeared.

  “This will let us move without detection”

  Clauton was not entirely guaranteed.

  “Are you sure it –”

  “I was chosen among the lot of monks for a reason” Isendy’s tone was higher this time.

  “I’m with Clauton. Don’t forget it’s the Salmantos we are up against –” Hlare started but was also interrupted by Isendy.

  He said “I am no mere trickster. If you knew anything about meditation you would…”

  “That’s enough” Themus cut in authoritatively “Let us have faith in Isendy and continue with haste. After all, there’s no alternative”

  With that the four continued sprinting after their unseen enemy.

  - - -

  “If you hurt me my father will kill you!” Lian screamed at one of the Salmantos as she was being forcefully led through a rocky channel with a cliff on either side, to the river where the ritual was to be performed.

  The Salmantos were only three in number and had a few dozen henchmen and henchwomen to do their bidding.

  This one with Lian, the village chief’s daughter, was called Pato and was extremely short and slim; he looked very much like a Halfling. The manner in which he spoke and composed himself gave the impression of some hidden power which had to be so for the three Salmantos were very infamous throughout the lands.

  “You should hope you are the one chosen to be sacrificed. The sacrifice will imbibe us with new powers; powers that will be used to ensure a reign of peace for all. You may be instrumental to that peace.”

  Lian looked surprised; she had thought she was the only one captured to be sacrificed.

  Pato guessing her confusion said. “Yes! We took four of you but only one will be selected; the purest and fairest of the lot.”

  “Why don’t you sacrifice yourself for peace?” Lian cried suddenly.

  “Someone needs to harness the power after all”

  “You are nothing but power hungry fools bent on world conquest and …”

  “SILENCE!” gnarledsomeone from an adjacent channel to the one the others were in. A giant of a man appeared from the bend and glared at Lian. He was the second Salmanto.

  She intuitively obeyed for his menacing appearance and vicious tone. He stood a little shy of eight feet tall; outlines of thick muscles could be seen through his robe (all three Salmanto wore the same patterned black robe with even spaced lines of red) and he had a savage face; the kind that told any onlooker that he was ruthless.

  Lian expected the Salmantos not to harm her until the hour of the ritual but she feared to utter another word in the presence of this monstrosity.

  Gandil, as the giant Salmanto was called, after ensuring the girl would not continue talking, turned his back to her to look at Pato.

  “Four persons have been detected in the motion field. There are approaching us fast.”

  Lian’s heart skipped a bit. “They are from Father” she screamed within her.

  Gandil continued.

  “They attempted to conceal themselves with mystic power. It was a good attempt too, but not good enough. At their pace they would be upon us within the hour”

  “Where do you think they are from?” Pato asked

  “It cannot be told at that range”

  Lian suddenly seizing courage, shouted.

  “They are coming for your heads. My father sent them. It has to be father”

  A deep silence suddenly enveloped them all. The henchmen that bore Lian fr
oze in place, expecting a horrific reaction from Gandil.

  Lian did not care much about the quietness. She was hysterical.

  “You think you can just get into any village and kidnap the daugh –”

  As she yet spoke, a massive sword appeared out of thin air into Gandil’s right hand and he made a swift turning slash at her.

  In the same instance, an opaque shield of some sort appeared in front of Lian and deflected the fatal blow.

  Pato whose arms were now outstretched, and who was undoubtedly the one that conjured the shield, spoke calmly.

  “Gandil, control your temper. Just a few moments left before the sacrifice and she will cease to be a nuisance”

  Gandil glared at Lian.

  “Choose well how you wish to spend your last hours. I could make them hell for you without a single bruise on you”

  Lian could not answer even if she wanted to, she was stunned.

  “When had the sword appeared? How had he swung so fast that she did not realize it until the sword was inches away from her face? And where had that force field come out from? Just how powerful are these people?”

  Gandil turned again to Pato.

  “The ritual preparations are complete; you will meet Jaquele waiting at the riverside to perform the rite”

   He turned again to Lian and said.

  “I will be waiting at the entrance of the mountains to give your friends a warm welcome, that’s assuming it’s you they are here for”

  “I will come with you along with some men” Pato said to Gandil.

  “That won’t be necessary” answered Gandil with a grunt.

  “We have not gauged the strength of the assailants. You don’t know what you will be up against.
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