Tainted Victory – Chapter 11, Part 8 (Page-a-Day!

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“All right,” Olivier finally relented. “I will remove the bonds from your mouth.” He gripped his staff tightly. Its runes glowed harshly. “If you say so much as a curse you will be able to do less than talk.”

She murmured out a yes. Olivier snapped his fingers. The stone peel unfurled. She let out a long exhale. Then inhaled and exhaled again. “Phew. That was a pain.” She looked up to Olivier. “I just have one question.”

“Only one? Go ahead?”

“As king, what will your stance be on destruction of private property?”

“I ahhh… well obviously I would be against it.” Before what they did slid into place in his head it was too late. Goblet let out a sharp whistle. He spun around. Hounder shot out from the darkness of the dining room. His hackles were raised, teeth sharpened to points, nails fierce, and his gaze unbreaking. His nails click and clack along the stone at great pace. Olivier held  up his staff and activated the runes along its length. They glowed bright. Hounder leapt into the air. He bore his teeth into the staff. His teeth broke through. Chunks of wood splattered out everywhere. “Get off!” Olivier flung the staff side to side. Hounder held on tightly. The cracks he made snapped further and further down its length. The runes flickered and died down. The cracks reached the end. Hounder let out a harsh growl. The staff snapped. Olivier fell backward. The ends of the staff clattered to the ground and spun away. Hounder clawed at his face. 

The stone peels around the party fractured, cracked, then evaporated to dust on the ground. They stood up, dusted themselves off, and stretched out. “That was the worst,” Evelyn said. She removed her knife. “Now it’s time we take care of him.”

“No!” Hugh held his hand out. “We don’t know if killing him will break the spell he has over the other people!”

“Actually…” Goblet began. He turned around. There was a smashing rattle against the castle door. The hinges squeaked. The wall shook. The party turned to the door. There was a second crash. The door bucked and bowed. The metal and iron along it flew off and clanged against every surface. There came a third crash. The door splintered. Cracks of daylight soon came steaming in. Soon the shadows of the invading army filled the cracks. 

“We need to go!” Claudia said. “We need time to get some sort of plan together.”

Hugh looked to Evelyn. “Where is the escape you had planned?”


“Not now. Before we were captured you said there was an escape you had. Where is it?” 

A fourth crash smashed the door. Chunks of wood flew off and bounced against the stone floor.

“You don’t want to go that way.”

“We don’t have a choice, Evelyn!” Goblet said. He whistled. Hounder left the downed mage and trotted up to his side.

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