Saturday, September 25, 2010

Winters End. 57

The snow had stopped falling in Bravosa, but it was still freezing cold. There was no one moving in the deep snow but snowmen and there mounts. Kearn had created out of a large mound of snow left by an avalanche his own palace hollowed out by magic and his snow men. Inside he molded a beautiful Ice home for himself. A large entry hall complete with ice statues and ice walls with magnificent cold furniture. A frozen chandelier hung from the ceiling that sent off sparkling light from the almost invisible walls. Kearn's palace was the perfect place he thought to rule the world from once he was rid of his enemies. And first he would start with these dragons. That would make Muerte pleased enough for him to get close enough to put an end to her. He looked over to the corner and saw Clea dressed in a beautiful gown he had conjured for her. Over that she wore a full length fur coat to keep her warm until he was finished with her rescuers. Then he would take her and make her his. He wondered how long they would take to try and rescue her.The clouds over Bravosa had thinned out and the sun was trying to break its way through. Deep in the forest Rush and Geo were on a scent they had found back at the battle sight and were following it. They knew just what the scent was. It was there old masters. There was no mistaking that smell. Running quickly over the snow it didn't take them long to follow it to where the Kearn had taken the snow men. From being a large group of tree tops, the snowdogs watched. Walking along the front entrance they saw two snowmen briskly patrolling. Slowly they crept closer to the mound. Their white fur causing them to blend in with the blinding snow all around them. From inside Geo saw Clea sitting in Keans throne room with her head down. He tried to reach in with his mind to her, but Kearn had set up some kind of block that stopped his probe.
{ Found man's mate.} He sent to Rush. Rush made his way over to him and looked in. He could see she wasn't hurt but she was scared.
{ We stay and watch.} Rush sent as he settled down in the snow.
{ I tell Viggo what we see.}

Sitting on his throne of ice, Kearn watched Clea shiver in the cold. He smiled at her distress but he thought she was so beautiful. He stood and walked over to where she had sat down as far away from him as she could. He stood and looked down on her, then knelt to look her in her eyes." So beautiful." He smiled at her. She pulled away from his cold touch with disgust and spit in his face. Kearn reached up and brushed the frozen dust away.
" You don't like my touch?" He asked standing back up. He raised his hand and willed ice to start forming at her feet. She jumped up and tried as hard as she could to pull herself free from the floor. But the ice kept forming all around her. The entire corner she stood in was beginning to fill with ice.
" What are you doing?!" She screamed in horror. "Stop! Please, Stop!"
" Don't worry my sweet." Kearn smiled at her." It won't hurt. You'll just go to sleep. And if you wake up, well then things will be all different. You'll be my Queen with a frozen heart just like mine."
The ice had risen to her chest by then. It was getting harder for her to breathe. She couldn't move anything at all by then except her mouth.
" I'll never be your Queen." She said. " And my husband and the dragons will come for me and kill you when they find me dead. So enjoy you last hours you ice freak." Kearn laughed as the ice covered her head.
" Never say never,"
He walked over and tapped on the ice knowing for the moment she was still aware. He kissed the ice covering her face then turned and walked out of the room laughing.
" Snowmen, to me." He called. All around his palace they came running to his call. Once outside he found ten snowmen and there dogs waiting for him. He walked out to stand in front of them.
" We have work to do." He told his slaves. " I want the dragons here so I can destroy them. To do that , we must draw them out. That cave you found would but perfect."
He walked over to the snowman that had captured Clea. He stood straight for his master.
" You can find that cave again, right?"
" Yes master." He nodded his head.
" Good." As Kearn walked away from the snowman he waved his hand at a snow pile and ten more snowmen formed. He went over and placed his hand on each of there frozen chest and sent life into them one by one. With a gasp they took there first breathes and bowed to there god before them.
" We have people to kill." He smiled as he caused a cloud of snow to form around them and take them off to do his bidding.

Watching from the forest Rush and Geo sniffed for scents to see if any snowmen were still there. Neither dog could find a scent in the air. That meant Clea was all alone.
[ Stay.] Rush sent to his partner. [ Tell Viggo, I go see wo-man.]
Padding to the front entrance, Rush looked around to be sure there was no one around. He pasted through the entrance and followed his nose through corridors checking all the places Clea had been until he came to Kearns throne room. There he found her. Slowly the great dog made his way into the throne room and up to the wall of ice. There she was frozen deep in the wall of ice. Rush could detect no life coming from her frozen form but he could feel the magic still lingering all around her. Maybe there was still a chance he thought. Quickly he turned and bolted from the room and out of the mound. By the trees he found Geo waiting.
{ This bad.} He sent. {Wo-man in trouble. Get Alpha here fast.}
{ I call Viggo.} Geo nodded his agreement.

As the three dragons and Alee talked with Jona in the tower, they heard Viggo start howling outside. Everyone turned to Icicle wondering what was happening. They all ran for the wall to see what was wrong. Viggo and Runner bound back and forth in excitement. Icicle called them to him.
" What is it?" Icicle asked.
{ Wo-man stuck in ice place.} Viggo sent to them. { Ice man not there.}
" This is our chance to get her out." Jona said. " We have to go."
Suddenly Viggo started barking again and nudging Icicle.
{ Ice man at cave now. Mia see him.}
" Chuy is there all alone. " Blaze said. " He'll be killed with the whole town. Jona, you take Viggo and go free Clea. We'll deal with the cave. Alee, I hope you can handle Kearn."
" With a little sunlight at my back. I don't think he'll be a problem." Light shined in his eyes.
" You go see about the cave. Give me a little time to tan and I'll meet you there. "
Alee walked over to Jona and handed him something.
" Whats this?" Jona asked. He looked at the red stone in his hand. It had strange symbols carved into it.
" Just in case you have to move fast to get away from Kearn." The Sun god smiled at him. " Put it on Viggo's chest and send a spark of magic into it."
" What is it?" Jona asked again.
" You'll see." He said as he began to glow until there was nothing left of him but an orb.
" Hurry." Icicle called after Alee as he streaked through the wall. Nautica followed them to the wall. Blaze stopped and looked at her.
" I don't think we'll be needing you in this battle." He said. " Stay here."
" Why? I'm a fighting dragon just like you and Icicle."She said sternly. " I can hold my own in a fight."
" I know you can sister." Blaze explained. " But I won't let you get hurt."
" Blaze." She looked into his eyes. " All of you protect me like I'm some kind of frail crystal figure that will shatter if anyone touches me. I'm not. I can fight just as hard as any of you and maybe even harder. Ask Denner, he'll tell you."
" I'm just trying to protect you!" Blaze threw his hands up in desperation.
" I don't want you protection. " She put her hand on his face. " I want your trust. That's all."
" Blaze." Icicle stepped over to them. " She's right. She's as powerful as any of us and deserves to be treated with respect, not sheltered."
" Ok." He said. " I understand. But I still don't want you facing Kearn. You can go with Jona to help. Will that do?"
[ No it won't.] They heard Rage send to them. All three dragons jumped at his intrusion.[ Nautica is your sister and you will respect her wishes. And she's almost as immune to cold as Icicle is. You can use her help. Now stop arguing and get moving. People need your help. Do I make myself clear?]
[ Yes Sire.] Blaze answered.
[ All of you be careful. Kearn is no joke.] Rage sent. [ Get going!!]
[ Yes sire.] They all intoned and walked through the wall.
Outside Jona mounted up on Viggo and asked if he knew when Rush and Geo were.
{ Yes. We go?}
" In a second." He turned back to the dragons. " I'll call once we get there. Good luck."
" You to." Icicle called to him. " Bring her home safe!"
" We will." He patted Viggo's side. " Lets go!"
With that Viggo took off out across the snow plains to find Clea and bring her home.
" Sarah, we'll fly." Icicle said as he started to shift. [ You ride with Runner. Lets get going.]

Viggo followed Rush and Geo's mind trail through the ice and snow for more then an hour until they found the site of an avalanche. Viggo stopped and sniffed the air.
" Whats wrong?" Jona asked.
{Rush and Geo.} Viggo told him. { Something wrong. We hurry.}
Holding on tight Viggo took of running with all his speed around the mound. There they saw the two Snowdogs waiting outside of Kearns mound. Skidding to a halt, Jona jumped off and ran to the dogs.
" Where is she?" He asked.
{ We grieve,} Rush sent, then he threw back his head and howled. Viggo and Geo joined him.
" What the fuck happened!!" Jona screamed. " Where is she?"
{ Come.} Rush trotted off with Jona and Viggo following behind him. They went into the mound and brush led them to the throne room.
{ Here.} Rush laid down and whimpered. With Jona in front, he and Viggo entered and looked around. Everything was made of ice in here. It was freezing cold. There wasn't much furniture . Just Kearns throne and a table and two chairs. From the ceiling hung a beautiful crystal chandelier with snowflake crystals reflecting light. Jona looked towards the back and saw a ice wall. It looked strange, like the was something in it. Viggo's ears perked up. He had found Clea's scent and barked. Jona strained his eyes to look at the wall. But he couldn't tell what it was from there, so he walked forward. Jona walked right up to the wall but still couldn't tell what was in there. He reached up and wiped away the frost and to his surprise found his wife's frozen face staring back at him.
" NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

A horrible stab of pain ripped though Icicles mind and almost knocked him out of the sky as they made there way to the thermal cave. Blaze looked back not see his cold brother riding in pain. He rushed back to see if he could help.
[What's wrong?] He asked.
[ Its Jona. Somethings wrong] Icicle shook his head.
[ What?] Blaze asked.
[ I don't know.] icicle told him.
[ Is he hurt?]
[ I don't know I said!] Icicle snapped as they hovered in the air. [ I'll call Viggo and see.]
[ Viggo!] He called out.
{ Yes Alpha?}
[ What's wrong with Jona. He's in pain.]
{ His mate.} He answered. { DEAD. In ice.}
[ Blaze. Clea's dead.]
[ How?] The fire dragon asked. [ What happened?]
[ Kearn froze her in ice killing her]
Tears ran down Icicles snout and formed frozen drops that fell to the ground.
[ Jona's going to need us.] Blaze sent. [ We can't go to him now, But Sarah, you can. I need you to trust me this time. Jona needs help. Go to him please.]
[ Runner and I are on our way.] She turned an headed off towards the mound.

Clouds filled the skies as two men guarded the front entrance to the thermal cave. They were bored and cold being up in the snow. There was at least two more hours left for them to be out there and the small fire they had burning wasn't doing much for them.
" I'm freezing." Rab told his companion shivering wrapped in his furs and blankets. " I want to go back inside."
" We can't."Garic said frustrated. " We have two more hours to go."
" We could just go inside the entrance. Its warmer in there."
" And what if those snowmen come back and we're not here watching?" Garic asked him." Then there's no one to warn the others. You want that on your head?"
" No." Rab said. " But I don't know how much more of this cold I can take."
" Then go on in and get warm. We can take turns." Rab smiled and turned towards the heat.
" Hey." Garic called. " Don't fall asleep."
" I won't."
Garic pulled his blanket tighter to him and looked out over the snowy fields. he was terribly cold to but he knew how important watch was. He had children in the cave and this was his only way to protect them from those frozen monsters out there. The reached down to heat his hands in the fire and thought he should put more wood on it before it died on him. He needed the little heat the fire gave off. Just around the corner there was a huge wood pile they had made to keep there sentries warm. He stepped away from the fire and turned the corner to gather a few logs. A blast of cold wind hit him immediately and he shivered as he bent to grab a few splits of wood. As Garic stood back up he saw a flash out of the corner of his eyes. He stepped back a little so the light from the fire would hamper his vision. Straining to see what was out there, Garic squinted his eyes. He saw shapes heading there way. Many of them. They were big, bigger then men. He knew they could only be snowmen coming for them. Dropping the wood, Garic ran back into the cave and found Rab on the ground sleeping. He grabbed him yelling.
" There coming." He said shaking his friend. " Get up now. We have to hurry!!"
Rab woke with a start with Garic shaking him. Quickly he got to his feet and ran after Garic. Running deeper into the cave Garic made his way to find Chuy who was helping heal the wounded from the last attack.
" Chuy!!" Garic called. " There coming!!"
" Get the men armed." Chuy ordered. " I want the woman and children in the back. I'll put up an illusion to hide them. Garic, I need someone watching the entrance so we know when there going to attack."
Out of the back carrying a small child, Kara and Kuan made there way over to Chuy. Kara reached up and tugged his sleeve.
" Master Chuy." She said. " You can't fight them all off by yourself."
" I have the men here to help." He said.
" Do you think that will be enough?" She looked up at him worried.
" Kara, I have help coming."
" Jona and Clea?" She asked.
" I don't know if they'll be here." He didn't want to tell her of Clea's abduction. That was information she really didn't need at the moment. Hopefully, Jona and the others could get her away from Kearn and back home.
" But Chuy." She said. " There here, and we're trapped in a cave with no way out."
" Calm yourself." Chuy stepped down from the platform he had been working on." We're not trapped. Theres a way out. But its not easy. It's only in case of emergency, and a last resort. So help me keep all these people safe. Get the woman and children to the back for me please."
" I'll do as you ask." They turned to leave. Chuy stopped Kuan.
" Kuan, I'm going to need your help too." He turned Kuan in a different direction. " I need you to join with Garic in organizing the men. I'll be in front with you using magic to help protect you."

From behind cover on the side of the cave, Mia and Tug watched Kearn's snowmen advance on the entrance with there mounts at there sides, Deep in there throats Mia and Tug began to growl there annoyance with the rest of the dogs still under snowman control. Mia reached out to there minds.
{ Brothers, sisters.} She sent to them. { Snowmen bad. Hurt us many times. Why you help them hurt? That not good. You not bad like snowmen. Help stop them. Be free like us. New Alpha, Not evil. Not hurt others. Come be free with us.}
Out on the snow field all the snowdogs stopped there advance on the cave. They looked at the snowmen in front of them and remember the beatings and the hunger from not being fed and being caged up. Outrage began to fill there hearts at there past treatment. Growling began to grow deep inside there chest. There eyes glowed with contempt for the snowmen.
{ They masters.} The lead dog sent back to her. { What we do?}
{ Fight snowmen with us.}
Looking back the snowmen noticed there dogs had stopped and were growling at nothing.
" Move!!"
One snowman reached out and struck his dog in the snout knocking him to the ground. Blood ran from his muzzle as the dog climbed back on his feet. All at once the great beast turned to the snowman and barred there sabre teeth at him. Shocked the snowman raised his hand to strike and teach the dog a lesson about there defiance.
{ Will dogs still follow snowmen?} Mia asked.
{ No! We hurt no more!}
Suddenly two dogs jumped on the snowman and forced him down ripping and tearing him apart. Pieces of his icy form flew as they dug into him as he was killed on his back.
" Stop!!" Kearn ordered.
With a wave of his hand he sent the dogs all flying towards the cave. Mia and Tug stepped out of the shadows and stood with the rest of the dogs as the climbed back to there feet. Ten snowdogs stood at the entrance of the cave now growling there defiance at there enemy.
{ Alpha. We protect cave. You hurry or we dead.} Tug sent out a message to Icicle as the snowmen came at them with raised weapons.
[ We'll be there in a minute.] He sent back. [ I'll have Chuy come out to help you.]
{ No!} Mia sent. { Him stay with people. We fight.}
Mia and Tug trotted out to the front of the line of fifteen snowdogs against twenty or more snowmen. They were joined by the other lead dog. His name was Pen. A large bold male with a dark streak across his chest and threatening eyes. Pen stood between Mia and Tug as they attacked. The first snowman swung his axe and Mia. She jumped aside and barrowed into him and slashed up with her long knife like teeth. She ripped off the arm he held his axe in the sent him to the ground biting into his neck.with a quick twist it snapped and he was dead. As another tried to launch itself at her, Pen stepped in and leaped on it. Roaring in its face causing powerful vibrations that shook the snowman until it shattered into a thousand pieces. All hell broke loose as the snowmen attacked. Several dogs were beaten and a few killed as they fought for there freedom. Kearn watched the combat as the two forces clashed. But as the snowmen had superior weapons, they seemed to be coming out on top. As the winter god watched, men came pouring out of the cave. All armed with swords and axes to join the fray. In the back of the group an elder grey haired men called out to the humans.
" The snowdogs fight with us.!" He said. " Destroyed the snowmen!!"
Kuan ran out and parried a blow meant for Mia and ran the snowmam through tearing his chest open. With a quick swing of her paw, Mia snapped its neck and slammed down her paw crushing its head.Thinking the fray was heading towards a win for the wrong side, Kearn called more snowmen from the snow. Sending his breathe towards his new recruits that came to life.
" There are your enemies!" He told them. " KILL!!"
From the snow, thirty more snowmen came running into the battle. Mia looked up and saw them. This was more then they could handle and she knew it. Alpha was there only chance now.{ ALPHA!!!}
Suddenly a gout of flame came from the sky and melted a snowman about to stab Tug with his blade.
" Here Mia!!"
Looking up Mia saw a great red dragon and Alpha coming out of the sky to join the battle. Blasts of flame and ice were sent at the snowmen melting and freezing snowmen. Icicles breathe was so cold the snowmen froze in place and all it took was a single blow to shatter them. Things had changed now and the snowmen were losing. Chuy in front of the cave sent bolt after bolt of energy at the snowmen blowing them apart. Mia and Tug went from one to the next with Pen tearing them apart while Kearn kept making more as they destroyed them.
" Pathetic Dragons." Kearn spat out at them. " You can't defeat me. I'm a god! Don't you understand!!"
A sudden flash of heat and light filled the sky making everyone shield there eyes, Over there heads glowing like the sun, Alee hovered in place looking down at them.
" I know who you are." Alee smiled. " And you defiantly don't scare me."