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Author Topic: Era 2, The Innocents  (Read 3428 times)
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« on: October 03, 2008, 14:16:41 PM »

'What is going on', a woman asked nervously, carrying a crying baby in her left hand and fondling its older brother with her right one, which was holding tightly her skirt.
The imperian soldier looked at her carelessly and gripped his sword with greater strength.
'We will simply evacuate the city, madam. Nothing to worry about. The orders comes directly from His Majesty.'
The swordsman waved at her to move along.
There were soldiers everywhere. Their faces - dark and cold. Every street and road was guarded vigilantly. They were well deployed, so they can form a cordon, which to lead the civilians in only one direction.
They had come early in the morning, quietly, they had surrounded the city and had started to politely, but firmly to gather the citizens and lead it out of the city. They were in a hurry, ordering shortly and harshly only the necessary supplies to be taken for two days march. Nobody was revealing anything. The people were starting to frighten, the followed the orders, looking horrified at the soldiers' hand, gripping their swords firmly.
An old man could not endure the pressure anymore and shouted:
'You have no right! You have no right at all to drive us out of our...'
But he did not finish, because one of the grunts stroke his head with his sword handle, sprawling him on the ground.
That was enough to cause a full scaled panic. Everybody was screaming, bolting in all directions, pushing each other, stepping over the fallen ones.
But the well positioned imperian army was guarding all the exits. A panic stricken, confused and frightened mob could not stand any chance against professional military.
In several minutes the order was restored, the most violent ones were tied and rendered unconscious, and the rest - driven like a cattle out of town.
The next two days were tough. Some of the older ones could not keep up the pace and were loaded on wagons, provided from the army. The food was long gone.
On the third day they all arrived at the location, extremely tired, hungry and as twice as scared.
The city they were taken to, was crawling with nomads.
Two regiments headed to the civilians, led by somebody.
Flinstoun? The Wild one?
And little to the left, by the road, riding his horse, the King was standing.
The civilians started to scream again, breached the cordon and made a dash to their Sovereign.
'What is happening, Your Majesty? Why have you brought us here?'
'Save us, My Lord!'
'Bring us back home, we are simple people and we have always served our Lord!'
The Sovereign waved his hand and his guards encircled him. Tears were flowing down his face and he could barely stand not to start crying.
'Forgive me all...', that was the only thing he could say, 'Now... these are your new masters.'
The deal was simple.
The Wild one had come with.. big enough army and stated an ultimatum - twenty thousand civilians to be delivered to the Ever Victorious Army or... his whole Empire would burn.
'Forgive me...', the Sovereign repeated and his jaw trembled.
The Wild one was waiting patiently.
But he would not wait forever.
The Sovereign seemed hesitated... he grabbed his sword with his shaking hand.
The barbarians instantly bristled, encircling Flinstoun closely and the archers behind them stretched their bows.
But a woman came close, looking at the King's guards with fear.
'Don't, my King... Don't.'
That was enough to make the Sovereign's shoulders crush. His head bowed down.
The woman passed through the guards and took his horse's reins.
'Lift up your head, My Lord! Do not let this... savage to see You weak! Never let anyone to see You weak! You sacrifice us to save many more! It is worth it!'
The Sovereign stared at her. Somebody's mother, somebody's sister, somebody's daughter and wife. But above all - his loyal subject and true person.
She worthed ten times more than the best soldier.
'Remember us, Your Majesty', the woman finished, bowed deeply and headed for the nomad regiment. To slavery and death.

Fifteenth wave results:

Successful pillages: 542
Defenders' victories: 160

Nomads killed: 4388719
Imperian soldiers killed: 2059639

Civilians killed or taken into slavery: 3886730

Sixteenth wave results:

Successful pillages: 804
Defenders' victories: 283

Nomads killed: 8286128
Imperian soldiers killed: 2827998

Civilians killed or taken into slavery: 5411586

The nomad camp was like a boiling cauldron.
New tents were stretching, the last year's wood clearing was replaced by new stables, two times bigger shooting range and lot more siege machinery workshops.
The Wild one was in command again and he was observing personally the process. He had decided to try something new and he could be seen pasing around the long and slightly conical structures, which were slowly erecting, barking orders constantly.
The nomads expanded nearly five times the camp to meet the needs of newly arrived Steppe reinforcements, as well as providing enough space for the millions imperian captives and slaves. The camp had already matched the biggest main imperian cities. And there was still not enough space. Though the reinforcements kept coming.
"We will expand it as long as it's necessary!", Xaoc thought, while he was squatting in front of his tent, with his eyes closed and his face - to the hot sun. The hellish heat was making him feel great.
And it was no only the heat.
The nomads were winning. The last attacks had gripped the imperians by their throats and made them retreat in all fronts.
"We must not lose the initiative!", the Steppe Wolf was thinking, while watching Krum talking to the lined up thousands of rookies.
'I do not care who you are and what you are back in the Steppe', the First one had very strong and deep voice, 'I do not care what you think you are at all! In my camp your status is even lower than the one of a very stupid earth worm! Two are the things which are important to you! You superior and... the juicy imperian daughters waiting for you to grab them!'
The savage young soldiers roared and made the whole vicinity tremble. They were hungry for blood.
Krum turned to his Chieftain and winked.
"They are ready!"

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