Topic: Orja Reemailainen  (Read 3340 times)


caius

« on: September 07, 2017, 08:50:34 PM »
Part 1: The Story Begins...
I try not to remember much from my time as a child, but some memories won't go away; a smiling woman with long golden braid who would comb my hair with her precious bronze comb decorated with a running horse; a huge man with scarred hands and a booming laugh who would throw me into the air and catch me as I laughed; brothers who would bring a brace of grouse or string of fish back for dinners; a large milk cow in the yard.  I mostly remember light, warmth, and love.  Then the demon raiders from the east came at night with fire and iron.  Isa yelled for me to get help from a near village, but I didn't even make it to the trees before they caught me.  Terror and my burning house... that is all I allow myself to remember of that night... my family... gone.  Even now, I am consumed by loss and rage as I think of what was taken from me...



As the sun rose the next morning, I was put on a raft and taken far away from all I knew.  I was made a slave to those demon raiders, the Njerpez.  I secretly took care of my ways, vowing to avenge my family's spirits.  One day, I saw a warrior's wife using my mother's bronze comb and I flew into a rage.  I was punished, but I knew who had destroyed my life.  I slowly learned the names of those raiders who killed my family, and they became my list... Kaipia, Ruuri, Kalevi, Kaipia, Hirvo, and Rautia.  I learned, watched, and grew large, like my father.  I banked my fury and nurtured my hate for these men as I slaved for these Njerpez.

One evening, these 6 were boasting to some of the younger warriors about a raid a few years ago into the Reemi.  They boasted of their power as they described sneaking through the forest up to my home.  Rautia laughed as he showed my mother's prized bronze comb and pointed toward me as I tended the evening fire as a sample of the wealth they took by their might.  The young warriors lusted the glory and wealth and they began that night to return to the Reemi for another raid.  I convinced Kaipia I would be a help to locate the villages that surrounded my family's homestead, and the fool agreed.  I was the only slave taken to care for a raiding party of 10. 

Once we landed the rafts on the shore, the raiders crept through the forest back to my homestead's clearing.  They repaired 2 of the cabins that were partially standing and started to prepare for their raids into the nearby villages.  As they were checking their gear, I realized I was alone in the middle of the camp and took my chance as I ran...
« Last Edit: September 30, 2017, 02:53:53 AM by caius »

caius

« Reply #1 on: September 07, 2017, 09:24:45 PM »
Some of the slower warriors held bows as they chased me.  I knew I would be killed if they could hit me, so I tried to keep other raiders in-between them and me as I ran.  Eventually, I stumbled through a grove and into a field planted with barley and peas.  By this time, only 4 breathless raiders had kept up with me.  I slowed my flight but had to stay far enough away that they wouldn't try to shoot me with their arrows.  I led them right into a Reemi village that rallied to my defense and killed the filthy Njerpez.  Unfortunately, a village sage was killed in the fight, but my revenge was started...


I sorted through the Raider's weapons and gear to find a scimitar and roundshield.  Leaving all their heavy armor, I crept back through the field, grove, and hid in a spruce mire next to the Njerpez camp.  When I saw Kaipia the idiot through the trees, I threw a rock at him and ran back through the forest.  Rather than call the rest of the raiders, Kaipia followed me alone into the forest.  He chased me through the trees and grove until he was breathless.  I then hid and crept until I was behind him and killed him with a blow to the back of the head...


He died loudly and I could hear the rest of the party crashing through the trees to find me.  I hid a short space away when they found his body.  I then followed them through the forest and drew them into another chase.  One-by-one, I wore them down until they were breathless and killed them.  Thankfully, Rautia was the last Njerpez left.  He saw my sword dripping with blood and he tried to run away like the coward he was.  I ran the weakling down and killed him with a slash to the back of his head...


As I ate and recovered from the fight, I gathered their equipment into the cabin that was my home.  As I sorted through their things, I saw my mother's comb and cried bitter tears...


Rautia must have brought the comb with him in his pride.  This comb is my most prized possession and I will always carry it as a talisman as I seek vengeance.  I believe my family's spirits were sending me a message.  I thought killing these demon raiders would ease my pain and satisfy my revenge.  But I was wrong.  I am still hollow with my grief and loss.  I cannot stay in the shell of my family's homestead.  The memories won't let me sleep in peace.  So I have moved into one of the cabins in the nearby village.  I will try to repay them for their sage's sacrifice for me.  Then the Njerpez will pay for all the wrongs they have done to me.  I will eradicate them, root and branch, so no other innocent children are taken into slavery. 
« Last Edit: September 07, 2017, 09:27:53 PM by caius »

caius

« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2017, 07:05:03 PM »
PART 2: Return to Njerpezti

My righteous rage and burning grief after escaping from and then killing my slavers has cooled to a smoldering thirst for revenge.  I traded some of the gear from my slavers for a punt and paddle, axes, food, and two dogs.  I named them Sitoa and Lakko and they became my fast companions as we hunted for elk and reindeer.  They allowed me to put up several hundred pounds of meat to smoke in a Reemi lodge, food I would need to seek my revenge.  As I waited for the meat to cure, we traveled in the southern parts of Reemi lands, traded for more goods, helped identify a bird thief, gathered branches for an old man, and reconnected with my people. 

Through all this, Sitoa and Lakko were my truest companions and they could tell I was growing restless.  I was tempted to settle down and live my life among my people.  But my mother's prized horse ornamented comb is a constant reminder of my hate.  I am learning to savor it, to sip at it, and to anticipate my revenge.  As soon as my meat cured, I packed all my gear into a punt, leashed my two dogs, and pushed out into the sea.  I came to a string of small islands before the great deep and stopped to rest throughout the last night and into the morning.  When I awoke in the late afternoon, I pushed out into the sea without even acknowledging the spirits or feeding my dogs. 

I must have angered the spirits in my haste as I quickly tired as I paddled east and realized I would need to sleep in my loaded punt in the middle of the sea in the dead of night.  However, the rains came in the night and I could not sleep.  All that night the rains kept up and I was too tired to keep paddling and unable to rest.  As the sky lightened with the coming day, the rain strengthened and I spent even longer exhausted, wet, and miserable.  I didn't know how to appease the water spirits out at sea, so I clung to my punt and dogs and made little progress.  Finally, the rains stopped and I dropped exhausted to a dreamless sleep.  I made it to the southern coast of the Njerpezit.  I made landfall at a place called Ironfen along the southern coast and knew there was a village near the coast.  Knowing I was in hostile land, I put on all the armor I could, gathered my weapons, and left my punt and provisions along the coast.

I saw a cliff and hiked to it to get a view of the surrounding land and was immediately confronted my a band of 3 Njerpez thieves.  They didn't even ask for my equipment but ran at me with their weapons waving.  I loosed Sitoa and Lakko and entered the battle.  Although all three of us were wounded, we killed the thieves and I used their rough clothes to make bandages for my wounds.  I wish I could have bandaged my precious dogs' wounds to help their healing for they truly saved me that day.

From atop the cliff, I saw the raider village surrounded by mire and knew it would be a miserable place to set-up as my base for revenge.  I decided to move on, but knew I would be back.
« Last Edit: September 30, 2017, 03:13:44 AM by caius »

caius

« Reply #3 on: September 29, 2017, 07:38:06 PM »
I left my dogs to heal and most of my provisions near my landfall and traveled to the east where I remembered there was a famed raider settlement.  I avoided a bear I saw on the way and soon came to fortified village near a small bay...



I scouted around and saw numerous warriors in the fortified village, so I because more cautious and only approached at night.  There was no way to get close to the village and I did not believe I could safely draw away the Njerpez one at a time.  I spent a night watching and lurking around their village and saw no way to begin my revenge.  So, I went back to my dogs to think and commune with the spirits.  As I approached the spirits with hate in my heart, I realized they demanded a sacrifice for my revenge.  So I gathered my faithful dogs, equipped all my armor, and together we went back to the fortified village. 



As the late morning sun shone, I quietly approached the village fence from the east and hid behind a big rock and tree.  I tied my dogs to the tree, thanked them for their love, companionship, and trust and equipped my hunting bow.  I shot a Njerpez warrior in the back with a broadhead arrow and I hid back behind the big rock.  As the warrior charged, my two faithful dogs, Sitoa and Lakko, became enraged and drew the attention of the whole village.  As the whole village approached my dogs tied to the tree, I ran to the nearest building and quickly equipped my shield and sword.  I heard my dog's cries as they were brutally killed and steeled myself for the coming fight. 

Due the door and small building, I kept the filthy raiders from surrounding me and instead, struck them down one at a time.  I needed to conserve my energy, so I often paused rather than strike and counterstroke when they attacked me.  Because of the spirits' protection, my caution, shield, and defensive strategy, I was only lightly wounded.  Eventually, the last of the raiders were breathless as they crawled over a pile of their own dead to reach me.  When there was one Njerpez warrior left, I approached him and ended his life...



Their village was now mine.  I burned my two dogs for their sacrifice and to thank the spirits.  I spent the next days recovering from the battle as I ferried my supplies to the village, gathered their gear, tamed their pigs, and stacked the bodies of the dead.  I then spent weeks remaking their village to suit my needs.  I tore down several of their buildings, expanded several buildings, tore down much of their fence, built pens for animals, and put up a smaller perimeter fence...



I even traveled back to the Reemi to trade, buy sheep, and new dogs.  I can't bear to name them yet as I don't know what more sacrifices the spirits will require of me.  While with my people in the west, I even hired a companion to hunt down a bear that mauled a Reemi adventurer and find his father's handaxe.  I understand the significance of tokens of parents as I still carry the horse ornamented comb of my mother. 

While I finished my preparations, the first snows fell and withered the crops in the fields.  Winter had approached while I wasn't paying attention and I lost a harvest due to my neglect.  Regardless, I am now prepared.  I have more equipment and better armor and weapons.  I have decided to leave their Njerpezti bodies to rot in the field.  If the smell bothers me or begins to attract scavengers, then I might burn their corpses.  Soon, the cold and snows will come and bring the darkness of winter.  I will stalk the villages, and nurse my revenge.  Besides, I have the whole of the unexplored Njerpezti lands before me...
« Last Edit: September 30, 2017, 02:58:42 AM by caius »

caius

« Reply #4 on: October 27, 2017, 08:56:15 PM »
Part 3: Early Winter Raids...
I'm almost recovered from my latest wounds while writing this in late Center month.  Snows are piled around my cabin and I can hear my animals crying out in the cold.  The immensity of my task has settled firmly on me and my revenge on the Njerpezti is now daunting. 

I've now killed the filthy invaders in five villages.  My pattern is the same.  I layer on all the armor I can and still move, sneak near their village around midnight, run into one of their cabins, and then hold them off one or two at a time until the Njerpezti are crawling over their own dead to get to me.  I know they will hit me, I can't help that despite my skill and best efforts, but my layers of armor and clothes have so far kept me from dying.  Once I have killed everyone in a village, I bind my wounds and sort through all their goods and materials.  I even have started carrying extra rope to leash their animals.  I keep all their weapons, food, clothing, furs, tools, and anything of use or value.  I load it all onto my animals, and any animals I have taken in the raid, and carry back to my fortified settlement along the southern coast.  I also render their worn and rough clothing into bandages and cords for my own use.  So far, I have taken years worth of vegetables (>1000 turnips, >160 lb beans, >30 lb peas), seeds (>400 lb hemp, >50 lb turnip), and grains (>450 lb rye, >390 lb barley), sheep, cows, and a bull.  I have piles of weapons, tools, and armor.  But I have so many more villages to wipe from the map...



... and one of these raids almost ended me.  As I was scouting a village, a Njerpez warrior chased me into an adjacent spruce mire.  I killed him and the rest of the village swarmed me.  I fought a retreat with the pack of rabid villagers into a thicket with only 2 entrances. 



My panic subsided until the 2 Njerpezti I was fighting wounded my right hand and arm with several cuts and a puncture until I couldn't hold a shield or two-handed weapon.  I was reduced to fighting left-handed with my handaxe as my wounds, encumbrance, and fatigue made it almost impossible for me to continue fighting. 



I finally hacked the unconscious maiden's neck until she stopped breathing and tried to catch my breath for the next opponent.  I waited until no one else came and then crept out through the trees.  Apparently, the entire village had come into the spruce mire after me, leaving fires burning and doors open, but I was the only one to make it out.  I stumbled into their abandoned village, tended my wounds, and went back to gather their clothes, armor, weapons, and tools.  Over the next days, I recovered in their village and realized how close I had come to dying in my quest for vengeance.  I even gathered their bodies into an abandoned cabin before I packed everything onto my animals and left that cursed place for good. 

I scouted the Njerpez lands and realize I have 27 more villages to cleanse.  I don't know how I can make it though this trial.  But at night, I still hear my dead mother's voice crying for vengeance.  I'm now spend my time bundled up as the temperature plummets and the snows mount.  I work until I drop from exhaustion to avoid sleeping.  But all my wounds have healed, all my chores are done, and I am staring at the walls in loneliness.  At the start of the snows, a band of traders came to my settlement and I traded for a beautifully crafted battleaxe.  It was so pleasant to speak with another human, but they left without a goodbye the next morning.  I dread to use that axe, but I have it packed and I am prepared.  I leave in the morning.  I might not return.  If I don't and you find this record, please take my mother's bronze horse comb and cast it into the mire.  I am leaving the comb in this cabin rather than carry it with me as I have until now.  I hope she can find rest. 

Dungeon Smash

« Reply #5 on: November 10, 2017, 05:33:26 PM »
a fine story.  thank you

caius

« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2017, 09:35:15 PM »
Part 4: The End

My revenge had become tedious.  I became careless while raiding the villages and was trapped several times in mires or outside of buildings.  I had layered myself with the clothes of the dead and waded into their villages with my battleaxe dripping from the last village I had slaughtered...



I continued to raid, even with light wounds.  By the time the snow thawed, there were seven villages left.



Once the Njerpezti were all killed, I collected all their dead from their 32 villages and stacked dumped their rotting corpses into massive piles.  While wading through the remains, a great calm came upon me, and I knew the spirits were pleased. 



The dead were stacked and sorted...



... and I counted all I had collected from their 32 villages...






Now, I am off to a bog.  I plan to build a fire and cast my mother's cursed comb into the bog to let her spirit rest in peace. 



The empty villages that now surround me seem pointless.  Even though I know I have appeased the spirits and are in unity with the world, I have no more purpose to my life.   I'm done.  I think I will travel back to the Reemailainen and settle down on a new homestead.  Hopefully, I'll find the peace.  What will become of me?