Volume 5 – The Adventures The Young Dragonborn
Chapter #181 – The Snake’S Den[Jon’s POV]
My best friend went missing.
My two girls went missing.
My cat went missing.
Four of the most important people in my life went missing while I was tinkering with some tools to create a thing that should be able to secure a good future for those people I care about. And then things got messed up when I was not paying attention.
Well, this made me get too much frustrated and called all the people I have around.
With hasty preparation, I raised the alertness in Winterhold to the max. I probably seemed like some tyrant when I overstepped my authority but I tried not to lose much of my sense. Luckily, Nurina was there for me.
For my important family to go missing, I can’t ignore the possibility of it being because of me.
Was I too careless?
For the first time, my house was so empty and boring. Without Jull and Nefertiti around, it was not my home anymore. Even when I sat in my office, I felt too lonely without Wulfur coming over to drink after work. And god knows how much I missed Alina.
If this was because of me… If someone was targeting my people to get to me… it won’t end well! It will be ugly, too ugly that I will bring hell down with me.
I couldn’t sit still anymore. As my mood went stormy, Winterhold got affected by it. I now have become the ruler of these people even though nothing is official, their fates are tied to my decisions. I can’t get carried away.
That night, I gathered all the members of ‘Team 0’, the personal guards and the intelligence agents at my company. We roamed the streets in silence and paid a visit to every spy that got sent by the all the powers around and started interrogating them.
It was a night full of muffled screams and spilled blood under the basement of the bathhouse.
No one knew what happened to my family as the news about them were not that important in the eyes of the big powers. Still, they had to die.
I even killed the Stormcloak and the Imperial Spies personally. I never thought I would dig a mass grave in my life but that was the price of power. I dug it with my hands.
The last thing I had to do was to leave the matters to the new management team I assembled during the last few weeks. They will keep the ship floating just fine.
Lastly, I asked Nurina to watch over Winterhold for me and even went as far as going to Arch-Mage Savos Aren and asked him to assist Winterhold if it happened to be under any attack. Luckily, I was accepted.
The last thing I needed to do was to travel alone to the Moonblade territory. It was the last place they were seen at and I was welcomed there.
I geared up and rode a Flame Atronach Hawk to the west.
Alina Moonblade, the Crimson Moon and the Child of Kyne, the most prized daughter of the Moonblade Clan returned to her home following her father Sigurd.
“Lady Alina is back!”
“Lady Alina? By the gods, it has been half a year.”
The clansmen and the other people who lived here were all excited to hear of Alina, the popular girl who left the clan to find strong mages in Winterhold, leaving behind only a small note.
In their eyes, Alina has only grown more beautiful in this half year. The crimson girl who plays with magic seemed to have soared higher in the sky, on a Flame Atronach Hawk this time.
The Moonblade territory was on the mountains in the west of winterhold right in the south of Dawnstar town. It had a big fort and a village around it, they could be reached by following a very narrow and steep pass up the mountain but there were some tunnels and caves that weren’t revealed to anyone, apart from flying with an atronach of course.
Alina gracefully landed in front of the town that had more inhabitants than the one of the Firemane. As a Moonblade, she was seen as a nobility even though she was the most important character in the clan after the patriarch, which made her appearance to be met with a lot of cheers.
Across the town, the main house was there. An old and towering castle built to withstand all cold and wind. This was what Alina knew as ‘home’ when she was young and ‘the hell incarnate’ when she grew up.
“Well, another day at the snake’s den.”
The snake’s den, the name Alina calls the fort with, is where all her uncles and cousins live and where she got tortured because of her different eye color after birth. She may have managed to change the opinion around herself lately by getting close to the people and making friendships and relations the way Hilda taught her, but there were always those people who hated her because she was a hindrance in their way.
Such people were watching her arrival from a window in the castle.
“Flying? The bloody eyes sure got arrogant!”
“Kaja, father said to go and welcome her.”
“Oh, it’s you, Elsa! Fine, I’ll be coming.”
During Alina’s approach to the fort, two girls emerged from the front door, one with an obviously fake smile and the other with a disdainful face.
“Welcome home, Alina.”
“Kaja and Elsa, it has been a while.”
“Indeed it is.” Elsa acted as friendly as possible to Alina. The reason was known as Elsa was to be wed to Gunmar son of Njord Firemane. A word from Alina can destroy Elsa’s happy life.
“Why are you back?” Kaja the younger sister, on the other hand, was openly hostile.
“Oh, little Kaja. I had to return at some point.”
Nurina smiled and looked at Kaja sharply, she thought; ‘Come at me, bitch!’
“Hmm! I heard some talk that you found a master in Winterhold and didn’t even manage to be her best apprentice, even though uncle Ornulf went out of his way and provided support for you.”
Alina was unfazed and only smiled.
“What was his name… the guy who beat you… Jon Dare? I heard he is a bastard rat from Riften. Not much of a genius mage now, are you?”
Alina sneered in her head.
“That’s all you got about Senior Jon?” She said.
“Never heard about him being adopted by Arch-Wizard Nurina Aren and the Firemanes?”
“Or about him being the new trading partner for our wineries?”
“His company controls the whole hold and he even promised us a shipment of Frost Honey, you sure must have heard the news, right?”
These events were really fresh and should only be announced today, yet Alina shamelessly took a chance and used the ignorance of the crowd to diss at Kaja.
“Tsk tsk, Kaja. I am disappointed! If these words of yours reached Senior Jon, our business will partnership will be in a bad situation and we will lose a lot of faces. Maybe next time before you hurt our families interests, you should watch your goddamn mouth.” Alina said what she prepared to say leaving both sisters behind.
At that time, the Moonblade convoy led by Sigurd caught up to Alina who went ahead.
“Elsa and Kaja, you are here to greet your sister?” Sigurd hurried up when he saw Alina being faced with the two sisters.
“Welcome back, uncle! Indeed we were here to greet Alina.”
“Haha… How nice of you girls! Alina, you are coming?”
“Yes, father. Just was done with the trash talking anyway.”
Alina didn’t seem to care anymore and just walked past the two sisters with her magic movement spell. Her movements were fast and graceful like a fairy.
Sigurd was taken aback by Alina’s words and looked at the two sisters who were smiling as if nothing was said.
‘This girl, did she catch on some bad habits from that Jonrad’s kid? And it seemed like not all water is clear, huh!’ Sigurd thought to himself as he wasn’t used to seeing Alina being carefree like that.
Her action reminded him of a father and son pair who could get on his nerve just by occupying a material form in existence.
After he followed his daughter into their home, the two girls remained outside.
Elsa Moonblade was silent while Kaja was grumbling with anger.
“Did you hear what she said? Would she dare to put me into trouble? That evil witch… she…”
“Shut up, dear.” Elsa spoke in a disdainful tone.
“E- E- Elsa! What are you saying? Will you stand and watch her do whatever she likes to me?”
“She would do no such a thing! Are you an idiot or whatever? The news about the Thane of Winterhold is something that only a handful few are aware of and someone like you will never be informed about his existence. There is no way she can prove that you heard of him let alone bad mouthed him, you dumb fool. She knows that too damn well too.”
“Eh! But- She just now…”
“She was just screwing around with you? You really have no sense for such thing, sister.”
Kaja fell silent and Elsa shook her head helplessly.
“Tha- That bitch! Who does she think herself?” Kaja made a very ugly face.
Elsa looked at her younger sister and wondered if she would ever do well when she is not around.
“She is the daughter of the patriarch, she can screw around as much as she likes. She also managed to win a lot of people and family members, do you think that father is having an easy time to deal with her?”
Elsa stated some facts and walked ahead while thinking…
‘Alina, poor child! You have grown a mouth, huh? Then let’s see how much can you run your mouth.”