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Alcingeria Volume Two Chapter Six: Yutsa

Alcingeria Volume Two Chapter Six: Yutsa

A Chapter by Ryan Henderson
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Following the rumor that Ignacio may still be alive, they travel to the Yutsa city of Dunford, where they investigate the rumor.

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Chapter Six Yutsa:

Saturday July 17th 1690

            “Ignacio.” Robert finally said.

We all exchanged worried glances. Could it be possible that Robert’s suspicion back at Queen Estaire’s castle wasn’t so ridiculous after all?

            “Guys, come on! Ignacio couldn’t have survived!” Don protested.

            “Don, I had a feeling that he was still alive back in Valgate and now we’re hearing that a man matching his description passed through here just days ago.” Robert told him.

            “You’re being paranoid! The ‘man in the black cloak with a strange accent’ could have been anyone. A traveler, a tourist, a merchant.” Don objected.

            “An evil vampire with an entire mafia at his command.” Robert suggested.

            “We destroyed the vampire mafia’s base though.” Don countered.

            “No, we destroyed one of them. Remember what William said when he and Ceberus got back from Valgate? They told us that a Vampire mafia was on the rise in Vulrock. Not just Valgate. He also said that it can lead us to speculate that the same thing is happening in the other provinces. We can’t be sure what the situation is in the other provinces, but we do know one thing.” Robert shot back.

            “What’s that?” Don asked.

            “That the vampire mafia is smart. If they weren’t established in the nearby provinces when they first surfaced, they definitely are by now. It’s been nearly three weeks.” Robert replied.

Don actually slowed down and considered it. He scratched his chin thoughtfully. Robert raised his eyebrows.

            “You know, I think you may be right. It’s too early to assume anything more than the fact that Ignacio may still be alive and the vampire mafia may still be active.” Don remarked.

            “I knew you’d come around. You’re right though, it’s too early to assume much more than that.” Robert agreed.

Erin yawned, Stella joined her.

            “It got pretty late, we should get rooms for the night.” Erin suggested.

            “Right, we still got the money from selling the horses.” Walden remembered.

With that being said, we all walked up to the counter. We were greeted by the innkeeper.

            “Good evening, how may I help you?” He asked politely.

            “Hello, we’re looking for eight rooms for the night.” Robert replied.

The man’s eyes fell on Tabatha. His expression became sobered.

            “Oh, you have a witch with you.” He remarked.

            “Yes, is that a problem?” Don asked irritatedly.

The man shook his head quickly.

            “Oh no, no not here it isn’t.” He blurted.

            “What do you mean by that?” Don asked, his eyes narrowing.

            “Well you see, here in Vulrock witch hunting isn’t too prominent. Especially in Valgate. However in the outlying towns and villages of Vulrock… Not so much.” He warned.

            “Well, we’re headed into Yutsa, so it shouldn’t be a problem.” Don told him.

The man’s eyes widened and he looked worriedly to Tabatha.

            “Witch hunting isn’t disallowed in Yutsa, actually it is quite popular. I’m warning you. If you walk into Yutsa with those clothes on, you’ll be killed.” The innkeeper warned.

Tabatha looked to all of us with a worried expression.

            “Oh no, first Riverguard now this!” She yelled.

            “Why are you warning us? Don’t most people despise witches?” I asked.

The man nodded.

            “Most people do, yes. However I am a witch sympathizer. I feel so sorry for them, they didn’t even do anything wrong and they are condemned to a painful death… It’s inhumane.” He explained.

            “Well, thank you very much for the warning.” Tabatha said sincerely.

She turned to Stella.

            “You don’t happen to have any spare clothes, do you Stella?” She asked.

Stela shook her head.

            “No, I didn’t take any with me from the bunkhouse. I’ve had laundry done at the castle of course, but I didn’t bring spares.” Stella said apologetically.

Tabatha turned to the innkeeper.

            “Do you have any spare clothes I could buy?” She asked hopefully.

The man laughed heartily.

            “I have spare clothes, of course! However they might not be to your… Liking…” The man trailed off.

            “Oh, I’m sure whatever you have will be fine.” Tabatha said with a smile.

The man nodded and walked into the back room. He came out with a cloth tunic and leather pants. Tabatha smiled as he put them on the counter.

            “How much?” She asked.

The man laughed heartily again.

            “Miss, I just finished telling you that I’m a witch sympathizer. It would be un gentleman-like of me to charge you.” He said.

            “Thank you very much!” Tabatha said gratefully as she took the clothes into her arms.

            “No problem. Did you still want those rooms?” He asked.

            “Yes please.” Robert replied.

            “Very well. Rooms are three dollars per night.” The innkeeper said.

Robert pulled out the cloth bag and counted twenty four gold pieces. He handed them over to the innkeeper.

            “Thank you for your business.” He said as he reached under the counter and grabbed our room keys.

We each took a key and walked upstairs. We bade each other good night and went to our appropriate rooms. I soon fell asleep in the bed.

 

***

 

Sunday July 18th 1690

When we all woke up we met downstairs in the tavern. I saw that Tabatha was wearing the clothes that the innkeeper gave her. She was holding her witch clothes in her hands. Don began laughing.

            “Tabatha! You look like a man!” He laughed.

Walden joined in with his high pitched fairy laugh. Tabatha glared at Don, dashed forward and grabbed him by the collar of his tunic.

            “Say one more word. I dare you.” She said threateningly.

Don’s grin fell from his face and Tabatha let him go. We all turned in our inn keys to the innkeeper.

            “Do you want a bag for your witch clothes?” The innkeeper asked when we reached the counter.

            “Yes please, that’d be great.” She replied.

The innkeeper reached under the counter and grabbed a small leather satchel. He handed it to Tabatha.

            “Thank you, sir. You’ve been a big help.” Tabatha told him.

The man chuckled.

            “Please, call me Thomas.” The innkeeper replied.

            “Well Thomas, thanks so much for your help.” Tabatha said with a smile.

            “Any time, miss.” Thomas said with a smile of his own.

            “Please, call me Tabatha.” Tabatha told him.

            “Okay, I won’t keep you guys any longer. I hope you’ll be safe in Yutsa, Tabatha.” He said.

            “I will be, thanks to you. Goodbye, Thomas.” She replied gratefully.

Before we left, we bought a quick meal of bread and water. We ate at some of the tables. When we were done we walked out the door, mounted our horses and rode eastward towards the border.

            “What are you going to do about your staff, Tabatha?” I asked.

I looked at it, it was strapped to the side of her saddle.

            “The staff stays.” Tabatha said adamantly. 

I had heard her say that before her and the other girls went into town that day a few weeks ago. I decided to ask her about it.

            “You said that before you and the other girls went into Riverguard that day. You changed clothes, but didn’t get rid of the staff. Why is that?” I asked curiously.

Tabatha looked at her staff fondly.

            “I have so many fond memories with it. I haven’t exactly had it all my life, but I’ve had it for quite a while. Two or three years in fact. It’s been a big part of my magic skill, it’s helped it grow. I just can’t bear the thought of leaving it behind.” She said happily.

I smiled and looked at her staff. She had a lot of fond memories of it.

            “Aren’t you worried that you might be accused of being a witch?” I asked.

Tabatha nodded quickly.

            “Of course I’m afraid of that, but if anyone accuses me, I’ll just say that the staff is a decorative family heirloom or something.” Tabatha explained.

            “So what’s the plan for when we get to Yutsa?” Erin asked.

Don thought about this carefully. He glanced to Robert.

            “Well we have two options. We could go to the ruins, or we could see how the situation is in Yutsa.” Robert stated.

            “We need to know if Ignacio is still alive.” I pointed out.

            “And if the vampire mafia is still active.” Don added.

            “As much as I’m dying for some adventure, I think it would be best if we saved the ruins for later.” Tabatha replied.

            “I agree. If the vampire mafia is still active, things could get bad.” Erin agreed.

            “Yes! I vote we don’t go to the ruins!” Stella jumped in excitedly.

            “If Ignacio is still alive, we must kill him.” Macalister said menacingly.

            “Yeah! Tracking down the vampire mafia sounds adventure enough to me!” Walden said enthusiastically.

            “If we go to a town in Yutsa and everything is in order, then what do we do?” Macalister asked.

            “We continue on to the next town.” Don replied.

            “Yes, if Ignacio was spotted in town back there, he was most likely trying to get out of Vulrock. Yutsa is the most likely place he could have gone.” Robert told him.

Thinking about the vampire mafia brought on a thought.

            “We didn’t give Estaire back her jewelry!” I exclaimed.

Stella and Erin’s eyes widened as they pulled their crucifix necklaces from beneath their tunics. Tabatha touched the silver earrings that Estaire had given her.

            “Oh man! I feel bad now!” Stella said with her head hung.

            “I don’t think it was an accident. Estaire is a smart girl. If she wanted her jewelry back, she would have remembered. I think she wanted us to be safe while adventuring.” Robert offered.

            “Oh, well in that case we should thank her next time we see her.” Stella said with a nod.

 

***

 

After riding for about two more hours, we saw a city in the distance that was surrounded by walls.

            “Look!” I said, pointing to the city.

            “That must be the city of Dunford.” Erin pointed out.

            “Is it the capital?” Macalister asked.

            “No. Dunford isn’t even as big as Valgate.” Erin replied.

            “Have you been there?” I asked.

Erin shook her head sheepishly.

            “No, but I am fairly knowledgeable in the geography of Alcingeria.” Erin admitted.

            “Well that should help us out quite a bit.” I told her.

We rode up to the city. The guards briefly questioned us. They asked if any of us were witches or warlocks. We told them we were travelers and they let us pass. The gate opened and we rode in to the city’s interior. It wasn’t like Valgate. In comparison it was actually quite small. It was about the size of Riverguard.

            “What are we looking for?” Macalister asked.

            “White fedoras, suspicious people, anything that could lead us to believe the vampire mafia is active.” Robert replied.

We rode into the town a little. There was an inn up the road in the distance, and the nearby buildings looked like residential houses. We rode up the road a little and saw a weapon shop. Erin stopped us.

            “Guys, as long as we’re adventuring, I don’t think it’d be a bad idea for us all to carry a weapon.” She said.

Robert looked to everyone.

            “Who doesn’t have a weapon?” He asked.

Robert, Don, Macalister and I all had weapons. Stella still had the flintlock from when we were with the task force. Tabatha and Walden had magic. Erin had no weapon. I then had an idea. I reached into my pocket and gave her my dagger.

            “Oh, thank you Redmond. That’s right, you still have the inscribed knife from the ruins, don’t you?” She asked.

I held it up with a grin.

            “Yes I do.” I replied.

            “What did that inscription say again?” Walden asked.

Erin looked at the knife, reading the inscription.

            “It says ‘no battle is over until it is lost’.” She said.

We rode into town some more, looking around. A thought popped into my head.

            “I have an idea.” I suddenly said.

            “Let’s hear it pal.” Walden encouraged.

            “We should check the inn, ask the innkeeper if he saw Ignacio.” I suggested.

Don’s brow furrowed.

            “Why didn’t we do that when we first came in?” He asked.

Everyone fell silent, clearly embarrassed at having not thought of it sooner. We all rode to the in, tying up our horses near the entrance. Tabatha grabbed her staff from her saddle. We walked in and found a few people sitting around at the various tables that dotted the floor. We walked up to the innkeeper.

            “Excuse me, we’re looking for someone.” Don told the innkeeper.

            “Who might that be?” He asked.

            “He wears a black cloak and he has black hair. He speaks in a strange accent. He stands a little under six feet tall. He looks to be about seventeen. Oh, and his skin tone is very pale. Have you seen him?” Don asked.

            “Why? What’s your business with him?” Asked the innkeeper.

Don paused thoughtfully. How did he answer that question? He leaned in close to the innkeeper.

            “That’s our business. All you need to know is that it’s very, very important that we find him.” Don said fiercly.

The innkeeper stared back at Don.

            “You know, there’s kind of a policy here. We’re not really supposed to share that sort of information. It’s in the interest of protecting our customers.” He explained while rubbing his fingers together.

Don sighed and held his hand out to Robert. Robert gave him thirty gold pieces. Don slid them over the counter to the innkeeper. He counted them and nodded, sweeping them into his pocket.

            “Okay, so here’s what I know. A man matching that description came through here a few days ago.” He began.

            “How many days ago? Can you remember?” Don asked.

            “Two, maybe three.” He replied.

            “Okay, continue.” Don instructed.

            “He looked to be in pretty bad shape. Well, his clothes did anyhow. He looked fine to me. Anyway, he rented a bed for the night, then went across the street to the clothing store to get himself some new garments.” He explained.

            “The clothes he came out with, what did they look like?” Don asked.

            “Well, they were just normal clothes. Beige and brown I think. But he kept the hood from his cloak up. Strangest thing.” The innkeeper remarked.

            “Is there anything else you can tell us?” Don asked.

The innkeeper shook his head.

            “No, sorry.” He said.

            “Thanks for the information, it’s been a big help.” Don thanked him.

We all walked out the door.

            “Let’s head over to the clothing store.” I said.

We walked across the street to the store. We walked in through the door. A teenaged girl sat behind the counter.

            “Hello, can I help you?” She asked.

Her eyes fell on Tabatha’s staff.

            “That’s a beautiful staff.” She said with a smile.

Tabatha smiled fondly.

            “Thanks, it’s a decorative family heirloom.” Tabatha said.

            “Anyway, we’re looking for a man who came through here yesterday.” I told the girl.

            “Oh? Who are you looking for?” The girl asked.

I gave the same description that Don gave the innkeeper.

            “I see. Yes, that man came through here yesterday. His cloak was all tattered, though his body seemed fine. Not a scratch on him. He traded in the body portion of the cloak. It was quality material, so I gave him the clothes for it. However he kept the hood up throughout the whole transaction and even as he went out the door.” She explained.

            “The cloak, do you still have it?” I asked.

She nodded and reached under the counter, putting it on the counter. I reached out and felt it. It was tattered and ripped. The material was indeed fine.

            “Miss, did this man give you his name?” I asked, curious.

The girl nodded slowly.

            “Yes, he said his name was Ignacio.” She replied.

We all gasped collectively. There it was. Ignacio had most definitely been through here. That meant that the vampire mafia was probably still around.

            “Have you seen him since?” I asked.

The girl shook her head.

            “No, I’m not even sure if he’s in town anymore.” She replied.

            “Well, thanks for the help.” I said with a smile.

We then left the shop and stepped out onto the main road.

 

***



© 2015 Ryan Henderson


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Ryan Henderson
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Added on November 11, 2015
Last Updated on November 11, 2015
Tags: Adventure, Fantasy, Medieval, Vampire, Vampires, Fiction, Teen, Original, Supernatural, 1690, Witch, Witches


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Ryan Henderson
Ryan Henderson

Cobourg, Ontario, Canada



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