Topic: The Njerpez Stalker  (Read 552 times)


flibbo

« on: July 23, 2018, 12:00:00 PM »
Heikki, the 16 year old Kaumolais kid who left his home village one early spring in search of adventure and a home of his own, spent his first several months roaming the wilderness of several different cultures and in between, trading and making friends, while at the same time scouting for a suitable location to build his very own log cabin. Once the summer neared its end and it started to get a little colder, he picked a patch of coniferous forest on an elongated island between the two arms of a river fork. It was long and hard work but eventually he finished his cabin in time for the winter and also managed to hunt enough game to last him through and even had some surplus for trading.

His first winter was comfortable and peaceful, until one day he left his cabin to check his traps. One paw-board fox trapped appeared to have been triggered but there was no animal in sight. Once he got closer he suddenly realized it had in fact not been triggered but disassembled... by someone else... as he slowly turned his head, he jolted at the sight of Njerpez warrior in a full suit of lamellar armor wielding a spear and cursing at him. Grabbing his shortsword and shield, a fight ensued which seemed evenly matched at first. Heikki only took a few hits from his opponent's spear which didn't do much against his own mail armor. He himself got a few good hits in but struggled to overcome the warrior's superior lamellar armor. After this went on for a bit, the warrior lost his grip on his spear, which Heikki immediately took advantage of and grabbed it. This however, only made the warrior switch to his broad knife instead, which apparently he was even better at than with the spear. Regardless, the warrior was wounded and after just a short while he turned and fled, which Heikki was happy with since he was wounded himself so after his enemy was out of sight he retreated back to his cabin to treat his wounds.

Once he was almost finished cleaning his wounds he was startled to see that same warrior again who was standing just outside the cabin window. Interrupting what he did, Heikki immediately grabbed his weapons again and rushed outside to confront the villain in a second fight. This one fortunately proved to be easier, as the warrior was still struggling with his wounds which he appeared to not have tended at all. He fled again and not wanting to risk more grievous injury, in light of the warrior appearing to be more proficient with his broad knife than Heikki was with his own shortsword, he again let him escape.

Days passed, maybe weeks. Heikki thought he had seen the last of this warrior, but he was wrong. One day, in late winter when the snow and ice was beginning to thaw, he was walking across the riverbed thinking about what tasks next to do when he was surprised to see his enemy of two fights yet again - wielding a hunting bow and swearing and cursing at him. Heikki rushed in and confronted him a melee engagement before he got the chance to shoot, prompting him to pull his broad knife again, which he then wielded very proficiently. Heikki took hit after hit, against which even his fine mail habergeon did not prove entirely effective. He himself only managed to deal a serious wound to his opponent's knee and a couple of minor ones to his arms. Exhaustion started to overwhelm Heikki, he stumbled and fell, lost the grip on his shortsword struggling against the pain as he realized his very life was in the greatest danger it had ever been. He started to doubt the quality of his weapon which had proven so inferior relative to the Njerpez's simple broad knife. In a desperate attempt to improve his odds, he therefore drew his own broad knife - one that was masterfully crafted and of much higher quality than the one used against him, and Heikki had so far only used for hunting. He started to imitate his opponent's strikes, stabbing at his torso in several quick movements. To his surprise, these strikes did manage to get through a couple of times and the Njerpez, swearing and cursing turned to flee yet again for a third time, which Heikki allowed, knowing that he was in no shape to continue fighting.

He was riddled with stab wounds, most of them fortunately superficial but a couple serious ones. He even took two wounds to his neck, which miraculously missed any major blood vessels. The fine mail habergeon he was so proud to have acquired was severely damaged and almost useless. The pain made it almost impossible to travel but he managed to get to a friendly village and the local sage was kind enough to offer his expertise in treating the wounds. One of the first things Heikki did after this was trading away his shortsword, which despite its fine quality he found unreliable to such a degree it almost cost him his life. He would use his broad knife for now, until he could trade for a more superior weapon.

The winter ended and he started to prepare the soil behind his cabin for planting. The wounds were still not fully healed but well on the way and his life started to normalize again. However... Heikki knows that the Njerpez is still out there, probably out for revenge, after such a proud warrior was beaten back three times. Heikki can only hope, and pray to all the gods he knows, that he would survive the next encounter as well.