William Creed: Monster Hunter

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William Creed: Monster Hunter

Post by Vaell on Sat Dec 14, 2013 12:37 pm

Character story: the ending was a little rushed, I won't lie.

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William Creed, Monster Hunter


There was a foul taste to the air in the Plaguelands; each breath felt poisoned by the sour vapour that clouded the once beautiful land. William raised his waterskin to wet his cracked lips, he had found himself rehydrating often since passing the borders. His teeth grimaced as the cold swept past him; he tightened the clasp on his cloak. Winter was not visible here, snow did not decorate itself upon these tainted grounds, but he could feel the cold creeping through his boots as they lie still in his stirrups. He peered to his wolf, Fenra, she was panting lightly. She had been William's favourite companion since he was a boy; a grand wolf of greyish-white fur. She met his eyes and William smiled, a momentary warmth passed through his body. Fenra was at ease which in turn put William at ease. If she smelt no threat then the path would be clear until Carverhill. He usually travelled with at least two companions, excluding his horse. He had his mare for a few years and had not thought to name her - it was considered bad luck among travellers. A named steed carrys only an arrogant rider. Arrogance was the primary ingredient of bringing about your own demise.

Animals were fond of William. He had a natural lure to creatures & beasts and had spent little time around civilisation. When one spends so much time around simpler beings, they start to adjust to a more primitive state. Even so, William kept a well-kempt appearance to appease customers.

Fenra howled into the night sky when she caught gaze of their soon to be host - a moss-armoured grey keep upon a small boggy hill. It had a winding path leading toward its entrance and at the bottom of the hill, a once stream had become a swamp-like bog. He steered his mare up the path, his eyes fixed upon the two make-shift guards that stood outside the oaken door. They wore chainmail sluggishly and their half-helms were brown with rust. They looked almost like twins if not for the left one's goated beard.
"Halt!" The goat lowered his spear, pointing it in the direction of William. "State ye' name, rider."
"William Creed. I am expected by your Master."
"He's the monster fella', Donald. The one Kren said 'bout." The goat snorted after speaking. Donald mimiced him.
"May I pass?"
Donald caught a glimpse of Fenra and screeched, his spear lowering toward her. She bared her fangs and looked up at him. The goat did not seem phased by her, his spear still fixated in the direction of William. There was a brief moment of silence shared between the group as each calculated their chances of surviving. Donald was the first to step back, his sharp maths had faltered his courage. He tugged at the shoulder of his fellow guard and the two swung the door open. William passed through.

William lowered from his horse and took it by the reins. His footsteps echoed against the Hall's tall ceiling. A lord's chair sat vacant atop three stairs. There was a barricaded window on one side, with cracked walls adjacent to it. He had quickly forgotten the odour from outside as a new one overwhelmed him; a musk exuded from the walls, a concotion of rotted wood, freshly cut grass and roasted boar. It felt as if it should be appetising but the heaviness of it resulted in an almost intolerable stench. Fenra did not share his concern, the smell of meat caused saliva to leak from her mouth. She looked up at him as she had when she was a pup, expecting him to treat her. Her eyes quickly left his and focused on the men now entering the hall from the back. At the lead walked a man with heavy feet, posing as a lord. He was past fourty and wore furs upon a blue doublet. His striped yellow breeches were tucked into his socks. He gave the impression of a jester, more than the master of this hall. Behind him walked four men, three reminded him of the guards outside, but the other wore finer armour and wielded even finer steel. He was bald as the day of his birth but his face was not absent features - scars and lines both masked his youth.

"Monster Hunter!" the 'lord' called out to him. "The Argents said you would be arriving on the morrow, yet here you are. Have you never heard of being fashionably late? A single man they send, ha!"
William forced a smile for the bemused jester lord. He had been contracted by the Argents to assist the false this man: a thief by the name of Archibold. In his youth, he was a local bandit who had a significant bounty on his head. After the Scourge plowed these lands, he had taken refuge in the mountains. His band of outlaws had taken this abandoned keep and began to help supply the Argents with weapons and local supplies. Archibold commanded thirty hardened men in his prime. He now had only seven and he had little to nothing to trade with, but the Argents were indebted to him so when he called for aid, they answered with William. They did not wish to risk their own men; a few coins to a hunter seemed preferable. Archibold had made enemies with a most cruel necromancer by the name of Val'gel. He had created a unique abomination to hunt the jester lord, a miscreation he had dubbed the personification of suffering. Even after the downfall of its lord, the monster still hunted Archibold and had already killed half of his men. A week prior to William's arrival, the creature had attacked the keep and slaughtered four men. It was halted by his  (a formidable right hand man, Kren, but that was a minor setback. It will not stop until it's destroyed.
"I knew of your father. He stayed under my hall. A strange man, though I can see that runs in the family. He shared my bread and wine, yet he left paying me far under its worth. If I did not have need of you, I would have you pay off that debt." Archibold chortled, the cold air caused a drip to spill from his nose. He sniffed it back and the smile left with it.
"You hardly have need of him, my lord." Kren eyed William with disgust, "No such thing as a Monster bloody Hunter."

He was not completely wrong. William had always felt ridiculous when he first introduced himself as one, a self-claimed title passed down like a family heirloom. His grandfather had been the first. A seasoned knight who had a hatred for unmannerly creatures. Archibold had reffered to his father but he was mistaken - the Monster Hunter Lukas Creed had been his uncle. William knew neither of his parents, his mother had died giving birth to him and his father could have been any one of her suitors. His uncle raised him, but never treated him as a son. His fondness was only for his daughter, Alue. William had grown up with her as a sister, she had cared deeply for him and he for her. The two had even shared their first kiss with one another. Lukas Creed had found out about their shadow-inhabited love when they were both fully grown. Alue remained at her father's side, but William was sent elsewhere - he has hunted alone ever since, maintaining his family's legacy. He had only recently learned of his father's death and knew not where his sister was.
"I will keep to myself. I have my own food and water." William replied politely, gesturing his head to a corner, "I wish to be left alone."
"Granted, granted! That's what lords do, isn't it? Grant wishes to simple folk. You look upon me with distaste, yet speak to me as if I were noble."
He was attempting to spark a reaction, but received only a smile and bowed head in return.

William was not a man to take chances: when the abomination came on the second night, he was expecting it. The first night he had time enough to examine the repaired walls and other barricaded doors and barred-windows of the keep. Upon the second day, he had time to sabotage one. The monster was wary, it did not wish to take risk being fired upon from the ramparts of the keep - it needed to be directed. William waited in the darkness of the hall, the two guardsmen were playing cards by candelight and two of the soldiers of Kren were by the damaged wall. If they had keener eyes, they would have noticed it. Their ears had failed them too. William and Fenra were both waiting, they had heard it sloshing through the bog. The wall splintered as if it were made of clay, crumbling beneath the behemoth that burst through it. The creature was nine feet tall, a stitched together piece of undead tapestry - each part of it a puzzle of human body parts sown together. Its bottom half was like that of a snake, coiling into two pronged tails, it slithered through the gaping hole in the wall and the guards were slow to react. Its top half had two seperate torsos, complete with three arms and a head each. Four of the six arms held crooked weapons: two maces, a sword and a small axe. The two halves were identical beside their faces; one was bald and lacked a jaw, it had only one eye, the other was infested with maggots. The other head had straw like white hair that protruded from its scalp as if it were a twisted tree - it was also missing lips, which made it look as if it were always smiling.

The two by the hole were quick to fall - one of their heads rolled toward the card players and the other lie a bludgeoned mess. The first's screams were enough to wake the rest of the slumbering keep. William notched his bow and imbued arcane into the tip, a dull purple glow lightened his corner. He waited. Donald was next to die. The creature slithered towards him and the two free hands lifted him from his chair and with one sharp twist, tore the body in two. His innards spilled to the floor, pooling under the table. Goat was quicker to react and already had his spear in hand by the time Donald breathed his last. He shot forward, attempting to jabbing the bald torso in its chest. It screeched, planting the axe through the goat's helmet and into his skull. The crunch seemed to echo louder than any of the previous screams. A door swung open and the other soldier ran out with Kren on his heels. The soldier grew arrogant but was quickly dispatched by two colliding maces on either side of his head. The monster drew back from Kren, it did not wish to mistake this man for a common bandit again. The opportunity opened and William fired. His arrow pierced through two of the smiling side's elbows, cutting through the seems and causing a burst of a greyish-red substance to join Donald's puddle, the mace and sword clanged as they hit the ground. The creature went to squeel, but the arcane explosion rippled up its skin and tore a hole in the monster's side. Kren pushed to strike at the Bald side, but it was not distracted by William's attack - a brief flashing of steel on steel overshadowed the wailing smiling head, until its axe parted Kren's head from his body.

William noticed Archibold running through the rubble, out the way the monster had came in. It had also caught glimpse of its target and slithered after him. William made for his mare, Fenra shot after the beast. He lifted himself into the saddle and rode after them. The hill was treacherous and almost caused his steed to collapse - but he calmed and steadied her, his eyes were fixated on the treeline as he saw the monster slither in, Fenra on its tail.

William rode through the treeline, readying his bow. He wound up in a clearing, the ground below them softened mud with patches of brown grass. Fenra had one of the bald sides arms in its mouth, pulling at it. She tore it off just in time to evade a swipe with the axe arm. The smiling side had the jester lord in its only arm, lifting him to take a bite from his neck. His words were inelligable, burdened by fear. William notched an arrow and fired it through the bald half's head, causing that side to collapse forward, taking the other side with it. The smiler dropped its victim and Archibold rolled away. Fenra took its final arm and William dismounted to approach the monster. He drew his blade and severed its head before making his way to Archibold to help him up.

"That... that thing killed everyone! It nearly killed me!"
"You're alive, as promised. It's dead, as promised." William used a cloth to wipe its ilk from his blade before sheathing it again.
"You... my home is ruined... You should have killed it elsewhere!" Archibold's legs wobbled as he made for the boggy hill. William shared no more words with him, he would receive payment from the Argents, not this broken man.

Fenra strode up to William and nuzzled against his palm. He stroked her and glanced down at the smiler's head. In undeath and true death, it still smiled. That made William smile. It's the little things in death that count...

Vaell

Posts : 2903
Join date : 2012-01-22
Age : 24

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