Volume 4 – Firemane Clan
Chapter #113 – Alina And Hilda
“As we commend their souls to Aetherius, blessings of the Eight Divines upon them, for they are the salt and earth of Nirn, our beloved children, and beloved of Arkay. May you find peace in their afterlife, and may your body find rest while it remains in Tamriel. Let no profane desecration fall upon thy remains, and may Arkay protect your body and welcome your soul in his Halls until Tamriel is no more.”
The town of Winterhold stood tall overcoming the danger of the ‘Blood Horkers’. The pirates that plagued the Sea of Ghosts for many years. And now it is burying the 13 brave men that fought and died in yesterday’s battle.
The one who did the last rites was Mjoll the Lioness, she seems to have received training in priesthood before. She was injured by a crossbow bolt at the beginning of the battle yesterday, that’s why I couldn’t see her. Her healing process was done by Alina who was very talented in the Restoration School.
Up until now, the town had no official cemetery until I went personally to talk to the Jarl about a certain plot of land that the people used as a graveyard. After taking Korir’s consent, the cemetery was officially made.
“Thank you for coming everyone!” I said as a sign to make the crowd disperse. This place should be quiet as the families of the deceased must get some time to say their goodbyes.
People here don’t have the custom of dressing in black for the funerals but I was dressed in a black robe and a hood like the ones from the game. I don’t like funerals but at least I have to show the proper behavior.
I also was a bit heartbroken when I saw a grave with no one around it. It made me think about many depressing things.
I had to say the goodbyes to the grave myself.
Sigh! Let’s leave this place.
I walked out of the cemetery and found a lot of people waiting. Once they saw me they all looked at my direction.
I looked around and saw Mjoll among them.
“What is going on?”
“The people, Boss, they want to ask about the town’s future.”
I looked at the people in front of me and saw some faces I saw before and some new ones. They all looked at me.
Sigh! Time to be a politican.
“I understand! Ehem! Everyone, thank you for your contribution at the battle of yesterday and its aftermath!”
“I know that before, we used to say that we will rebuild this town no matter what and whoever tries to stop us will be the enemy that we crush and repel. I say we all delivered the promise yesterday, and you should feel proud instead of being afraid.”
“From this day onward, we will fight the good fight as we learned from yesterday. We gained a lot of experience and developed better ways to deal with the enemy! Yesterday’s terror won’t happen ever again. If the enemy comes from the sea, they will never set foot on land. If the enemy comes from the land, we will bury them under it. Even if the enemy comes from the sky, we will be ready for that too.”
“Yesterday after the end of the battle, I, Jon Dare, Thane of Winterhold, held a meeting with the head figures in town to create an end to this mess. We reached a lot solutions and decisions about what to do and right now we are putting an organized plan to deal with the current situation. We reached out some allies and I am glad to tell you that our situation is more organized and much better than yesterday. An official announcement will be published under the name of the Dare Dragon Group. Thank you for listening.”
The people were still worried but they nodded and everyone went to their business.
“Jon! I came!”
“Hooman! Carry meow!”
Jon and Nefertiti who came together started running towards me.
Jull was smiling.
“You have finished?”
Jull handed me a high-quality piece of paper, I instantly opened and start reading it.
“With this paper, I am the Ruler in the shadows, I guess Delvin called it the ‘Shadow Jarl’ once!”
“Does this mean that you get to do anything in Winterhold as long as it is a public property?”
“Yes! We will have to pay rent to the Jarl but I will find a way to scam him legally!” I said with a smile. If it is about law then I am the daddy around here.
Jullanar came and clung to my arm, “Hehehe! You can turn from the saint to the devil in a second.”
“Please don’t misunderstand me! I treat people according to their worth! A dog like Korir is only meant to be used, he chose to join hands with the pirates and enslave the people before! The people, on the other hand, are the ones that require my full care. They are the real force and have the power to turn the weakest town into Skyrim to one of the towns that could withstand an attack from a hidden clan.”
“The people want you here, the thing they are afraid of the most is you disappearing once again!”
“Then I will have to disappoint them! I am but one man! They should rely on themselves for the fights yet to come. Next time, I will set back and watch them do the work. They don’t need a hero to save them every day, if they don’t get to learn how to do it themselves then there is no point! All I need to do is to teach them and lord over them. Plus, that is not the role I was meant to play!”
“You are talking about the Dragon slaying business?”
“Exactly! Dragons are the game I should focus on, the whole of Skyrim will need me by that time.”
“So, what is the next step we are going to take?”
“First, the Temple we are planning to build will give us a good amount of popularity for now, and the defense walls and towers will also be something easy to deal with. I gave some money to Wulfur so he can expand the workshop, Ongeim will be responsible for the new ships, Trudvar and Mjoll will both work on training the men. After all, we only need to go official after a few days!” I said and waved the paper to Jull.
We were walking in the street until we reached the house. In front of it, someone seemed to be waiting for me.
“Teacher Laaneth!” I jumped from my place.
“Jon! Don’t escape again, I came in peace!”
“Peace? You guys wanted to cut my head this morning!”
“Well, no one told you to get ridiculously tall to the point that we don’t recognize you then come hit on us!”
Oh! I shouldn’t have done that!
“Anyway, I was so scared that I ran away for my life! How heartless can you be on your juniors?”
“Beat it, Jon. Arch-Wizard Nurina wants to see you. It seems that she has a visitor you should meet!”
“Oh! She’s here. I’ll go change and come right away!”
I tried to run.
And I failed.
Auntie caught me and made me sit on her lap.
Fate, you are so cruel!
I can’t take this anymore! No way in Oblivion I can take it.
Teacher Faralda, Master, please stop smiling! Help me!
To think those two monsters are drinking buddies!
Truly, birds of a feather!
“I didn’t know that you two know each other!” Master was smiling while talking to Auntie Hilda.
“Fufu! We go way back since little Alina was five years old.” Auntie was amused for some reason.
“Hoho! Since that time, huh? So Alina was that child you talked about!”
“Yes! Alina is the one who opened my heart once again! Look how cute and small she is!” Auntie Hilda started poking me cheeks.
Dammit! So embarrassing!
“I am not cute or small! Auntie, stop bullying me!”
“Fufu! She is always like that!”
They are laughing like the pair of foxes they are!
“How drunk were the gods to let Auntie and Master meet each other?” I asked as I completely gave up. I can’t simply escape from the hands of Auntie now.
“Well, it was fate! You will get to know the details later. But now, it has been a year since Auntie saw you! Look how much have you grown!” Auntie was still not letting me go.
“I am sure a Firemane won’t notice how much other people grow anyway!” Master said.
“Come on! Alina is the one I raised up, how can I not notice her growth?”
“Still, what is that thing about forcing her to marry into your clan?” Master asked.
“Oh! That is a very old tradition between our clans! We must be always tied by blood as the Moonblade Clan is the only reason our Firemane Clan survived the Great Collapse. My mother is from the Moonblade clan, Njord’s wife and Skadi’s husband are also from the Moonblade Clan. There are other marriages as well. As for Alina, she gets to choose her husband from the clan if only she wished for it.”
“Woah! So that’s the reason. Fine Alina! Looks like you don’t have to choose after all.” Master said overlooking the real problem.
“Master, if I refused, my Clan will look at me as a person who betrayed the traditions and everyone will hate me!”
“They don’t even dare to do so! Whatever you want, Auntie will support you! But you will have to come to our clan for this month, you know that you must take your ‘Coming of Age’ ceremony with us!”
“No! I am staying with Master.”
“Actually, I am going as well!” Master said.
Wha! Master is going?
“I, I still have a duel with a Senior!”
“Huh! Who dares to duel my cutie Alina? Tell me and Auntie will hunt them down for you!”
“No, Auntie! I am the challenger!”
“Eh? You are challenging someone?”
“Well! I didn’t want to do it at first but the steward of our clan came and declared the Challenge without my consent!”
“Hmmm! Auntie doesn’t see you losing to anyone!”
“She is fighting against Jon!” Master said.
Suddenly, Auntie Hilda stiffened, and the atmosphere changed greatly.
“Wh, Wh, Why? Did something happen between them?”
Auntie Hilda is…
She is about to cry!
“No, they seem to have a good impression of each other.” Master said.
“Phew! That was close! It should be a small friendly fight then! Let them use wooden swords, Nurina!”
Auntie is saying very strange words.
“It’s a duel over my ‘Legacy Disciple’ Title!”
“What does that mage nonsense mean?”
“They will use the best magic they have, Hilda! This is an all-out fight!”
“Wawawawawa Nurina! Stop it! Don’t make it happen! Please!”
Eh! Auntie is freaking out!
“Just leave it to them, they will solve it on their own!”
“Nurinaaaa! How can you be so heartless!” Auntie said and started hugging me tightly.
“Don’t worry! They won’t harm each other!”
“Are you sure?”
“Yeah! Yeah! Just let the girl go, she is dying!”
Phew! Huff! Huff!
*knock knoknockknock knock*
“Who is it?” The door knocked and Master replied.
“The most handsome young man on Tamriel!” The one behind the door seemed to be Jon.
Master looked at Auntie.
Auntie who was keeping me on her lap the whole time let go of me.
She just let me go…
“Come in!” Master said.