The Legion Appears

Originally posted at

They appeared on the Green Marches.  We had a garrison there, with over one hundred well-trained soldiers stationed within a newly built log fort.  The land had been abandoned for many years, but by the valiant effort of those men, we had gained a foothold.  On that night the watchmen saw them coming: a group of no more than twelve, marching on foot in double file.

Their skin was pale and they wore little armor.  There were women among them, armed even.  The captain did not believe it until he climbed up to see for himself.  They carried six torches that burned with blue fire.  They reached the fort’s gate and waited to be addressed.  Captain Haddoch called down from the wall.

“Hey now!  Who are you and why do you approach a fort of the Scyon Kingdom?”

One of the men stepped forward.  In the queer azure light he appear gaunt and ill.

“We are messengers of the Draugmar,” he said.  “This land we have claimed as our own, from these green plains to the Hollow Sea.”

“The Draugmar?  I have never heard of such a kingdom.”

“They are a mighty legion,” the spokesman said, “long lost from this plane, but now they have returned.  They sorely desire their ancient home.”

“This is preposterous,” the captain said.  “King Bryan has fought hard to secure these marches for his people.  We will not surrender them to strangers.”

“You will abandon this land and return to your king or else suffer our wrath.”

The soldiers atop the gate laughed.  “Your wrath?” the captain said. “You greatly overestimate yourselves.  I advise you return to your masters before I order my archers to volley.”

“So be it.”

The blue torches went out.  A shrill cry filled the darkness.  It echoed in the soldiers’ ears.  Thousands of new lights appeared, pale yellow flames in the form of men.  They dotted the peaceful countryside around the fort.  The sound of many swords unsheathing could be heard as a dark, booming voice cried out to charge.

Our men fought bravely, but they were soon overwhelmed.  The nightmarish horde poured over the walls, unhindered by sword or barrier.  In the early morning hours the fort was taken.  Every man was slain.

To be continued…