|Fable: Heroes of Order- Chapter 4|
|Series||Fable: Heroes of Order by Bluej248|
|Previous||Fable: Heroes of Order- Chapter 3|
|← Fable: Heroes of Order- Chapter 3||Chapter Chronology||→|
The group had made their way swiftly through the dangerous roads of Darkwood. Rook had kept his word to Clair and her grandchild as they both were untouched by any foe they came across. As they traveled the three Heroes and young apprentice had told the tale of their arrival into Albion and how Clair's Hero son had died along with his wife by the hands of the Hero Hunter mobs. Before they knew it they were outside of Darkwood in the lightened meadow land of Barrow Fields as they made their way to The Old Grey House where the encampment of The Elite Order was located.
"Ugh, it's about time we get out of that place, always hated Darkwood. Anyways the pathway to the camp is just ahead slightly to the left, we should be able to stay out of sight from any possible mobs up here." Said Rook as the group continued to walk through the upper part of Barrow Fields, "From what you told me on the way here of your arrival it sounds like you've all had your fill for now of mob encounters."
"Yes, quite enough." Stated Jarissa, "But it would however help if we had some guns of our own to fight back with."
"We'll get you all fixed up with that in a little bit." Rook replied as he turned his attention to Clair, "By the way, my sympathies to you ma'am, I'm very sorry about your family... I too have lost people very close to me as well in all of this."
"Thank you, as devastating as it's all been I'm just thankful my granddaughter had survived it all and kept safe." Clair said.
"Well, I can assure you that this is the safest place from the Hero Hunter mobs." He replied as he then turned his head to Kayma, "And as far as your young apprentice goes with needing a graduation ceremony I'm sure the Guildmaster could put one together."
Kayma then replied with a shocked tone, "What? You mean Guildmaster Markeniss is alive?"
"Aye, he's alive and well along with a small handful of stragglers, some Heroes and some apprentices. Till this day we still search for any surviving Heroes or try to rescue captured ones. But so far only very few attempts have been successful." He said in a slightly saddened tone.
"We will serve the order the best we can and help end this chaos. We will make a difference." Replied Kayma.
Rook grinned slightly, "Well you made through mob encounters with nothing but crossbows and magic. I'd say I'm convinced you will make a difference."
The group had then reached what looked like a dead end with two very large boulders covered with spots of dirt and moss.
"Uh, Rook, I do not see a trail. It is more like a dead end." Said Kayma.
Rook let out a chuckle, "Yes it does seem that way doesn't it? But watch this."
He then walked slightly closer to the twin boulders and shouted, "Aye! Ace! It''s Rook! Open up the gate!"
"What's the password?" A voice shouted back from what sounded like it was coming from the other side.
"There is no password ya daft bafoon! Now open up the damn gates!" Shouted Rook.
Just then the two large boulders began to separate with a thunderous noise as they moved across the ground. When they were fully separated on each side of the path, the rest of the road was revealed with a man standing in the middle in front of them. He had a bright will users outfit on along with a pointy sky blue hat. He was a younger looking than Rook, probably around Ami and Jarissa's age.
"Ah, hello there Rook!" Said Ace keenly, "I see you found some more recruits."
Rook had ignored his greeting, "Ace, what's the meaning of asking for a password? You bloody well know there's no password."
"Exactly! It's a part of my new security clearance. You see only a true member of our order would no there is no password to open the gate therefore they'll deny it and I'll know there a member. Pretty clever, am I right?" Said Ace.
Rook sighed, "Did it ever occur to you that the reason we have no password is because only Elite Order members know that these are camouflaged gates and no else knows of our campsite?"
"Yeah well you never know when a phony might try to sneak in and slit our throats while we sleep." Ace replied.
"Look just do your damn job and open the gates when order members come or go. I got to get these people to the campsite." Replied Rook.
"Alright take it easy Rook." Ace said as he turned to the rest in the group, "Hope you all enjoy your stay. Go show those Hero Hunters who's boss!"
"Um right... will do." Jarissa replied reluctantly as the party continued down the path, "Well he was an interesting one."
"Aye, that was Ace our gate keeper. Pain in the arse that one, but he is a very talented Will User I'll give him that. Except the time he almost burnt down the camp using his fireball spell, unintentionally of course." Replied Rook.
"So, how exactly did this Order start?" Kayma asked as the group continued down the path.
"Well, a few weeks after The Guild was attacked and burnt to the ground, the head guard commander of Albion Vincent Crane vowed to end the chaos that had broken out throughout Albion. He then received a message that Guild Master Markeniss had survived the attack with a few others and to meet them at the old Grey House area. So Commander Crane gathered as many of his strongest high ranking men as he could, made their way here and organized a resistance force to deal with the Anti Hero League." Rook answered.
"Hmm," Kayma replied, "It seems Markeniss had picked a good secluded spot. Nobody would think of looking here."
"Indeed he did. You'll see him shortly, but first lets get you all checked and settled in with the Commander." Said Rook.
The group then started to see campfires and pitched tents along both sides of the path in the short distance ahead of them as they light the evening dusk. As they walked by each small campsite they noticed most of them were 4th and 5th regiment guards with a few 3rd regiment ranked in the mix. Others as they noticed were armed citizens, Guild Apprentices and fellow surviving Heroes. Most of them just continued about their business cooking meals and sitting around the campfires. A few others had gave some looks of relief and grins along with a few positive remarks. The group had then made their way closer to the Old Grey House. It was around this area of the camp the young apprentice took notice of a nearby archery and shooting range as well as a tavern tent along with a few small merchant stands that sold clothing, weapons and other items. The group then found themselves stepping on the small porch with two fifth regiment guards in black and gray uniforms guarding the open door entrance with steel blunderbuss rifles.
"Evening Rook." The one guard had greeted.
"Evening George." He replied.
"Found some stragglers today have you?" Asked George as he noticed the group behind him.
"Aye I have and I'm here to check them in with The Commander." Replied Rook.
George replied, "Well, go on in then. He's right inside."
The group then proceeded inside as they walked through the door way to find a rather tall and large man with a build slightly bigger than the rest of the guards standing behind a long wooden table peering down at a cluster of papers. He wore a white guard uniform with gold trimming and was bald with a thick large mustache.
"Commander Crane, busy at work as usual?" Rook greeted.
Commander Crane lifted his head and turned his attention from the tables surface to Rook, "Ah Rook! There you are. I was starting to worry about you for a minute."
Rook let out a slight laugh, "You know for a minute I was worried myself, but those blighters have still yet to get the best of me."
Jarissa had then gave out a fake throat clearing sound, "Aren't you going to introduce us?" She asked Rook.
"Oh right, sorry." He replied as he turned to The Commander, "Commander, these are survivors I was fortunate to come by while patrolling today."
"I think we're the ones who were fortunate." Jarissa replied.
"Yes, indeed we were." Added Kayma, "We have only recently returned to Albion. We've been away for some time in distant lands on a mission from The Guild. We had saved this woman and her grandchild from mob scouts. Rook and a few of his men found us after the battle and lead us here. We have got word of your Elite Order shortly after our arrival to Snowspire and wish to join your cause."
"Hm, I see. You all must have been gone a long while then. I assume your up to speed on everything that has happened?" Asked Commander Crane.
"That we are. We managed to recover a journal and letter off a fallen Hero and his wife who were slain by a mob. The woman you see with us is the mother of that Hero and the toddler with her is their daughter." Kayma answered.
Commander Crane replied toward Clair holding her sleeping granddaughter, "My sympathies ma'am. I am very sorry for your loss."
"Thank you." She replied in a slight saddened tone, "But we both would like to get settled in as soon as we can. It's been a very long day and my granddaughter is out like a light."
"Ha, I can see that." Commander Crane said as he gave a slight grin at the sleeping child in her arms, "But of course yes, you may get settled in. The guards outside will escort you to your tent. It's not much, but it's the best we can do for now."
Clair gave a slight grin, "Thank you sir." As she then turned her attention to the Heroes and young apprentice, "And thank you four for saving us. I don't know how we could ever repay you. I'm sorry for my stubbornness before, but I can see now you four truly did save our lives."
Kayma replied, "No need to apologize ma'am. We understand your predicament and the losses you have suffered. Go and rest now. We shall avenge your son and his wife."
"I know you will. Thank you again." As she left the house.
"Now, as for the four of you." Commander Crane said after Clair was gone, "I would like to welcome you to The Elite Order. It's an honor to have you on board."
"Thank you." Replied Jarissa, "And speaking of honor, our young apprentice here is in need of a Hero graduation ceremony and we're in need of a reunion with our Guild Master."
"Oh I see." Commander Crane replied, "Well of course I'd be happy to make the arrangements. But in the mean time Markeniss is in the map tent. It's the big tent at the end of the trail. Rook, why don't you show them the way."
"Will do." He replied.
"Thank you Commander." Replied Kayma as the group began to make their way out.
"You're very welcome good sir's and madam's" He replied.
They all then followed Rook along the path that lead to the other side of the camp.
"Well, it seems like the commander likes the four of you. I have a feeling you lot will be a big help in our cause." Rook said.
"It's our pleasure to help however we can." Said Ami.
"You know this map tent looks like it's where that Demon Door used to be. I believe it was some sort of garden." Jarissa pointed out as they walked closer to the tent.
"Right you are." Rook replied, "The Demon Door was unlocked years ago by the Jack Slayer. The area seemed large enough to put up the map tent when we put up the campsite. But anyway here we are, I'm sure the Guild Master will be relieved to know you're all alive."
"The feelings mutual." Jarissa said as they began to enter the large tent.
When the five of them entered the young apprentice looked around as he noticed a built in wooden floor beneath his feet, a few book selves along the canvas walls of the tent, and a large circular map table much like the one at The Guild. It was on the other side he then saw a tall slender man facing the opposite way with long tied back hair, a dark violet robe with yellow trim, and black pants. He then turned around and noticed Rook.
"Hello there Guild Master." Rook greeted.
"Ah hello Rook. Is everything alri...wait a minute, I know you four. No, it can't be." Markeniss said with a surprised joyful tone.
"It is Guildmaster." Replied Jarissa with a slight joyful tone.
"Kayma, Jarissa, Ami, and their young apprentice. I can't express how over joyed I am to see the four of you alive." Said Markeniss as he walked closer to the group, "I take it your quest in the southern lands was a success."
"That it was Guildmaster." Kayma replied, "And our young apprentice here has completed his training as well."
"The Commander already said he'd make the arrangements for a graduation ceremony here at the camp later." Said Ami.
Markeniss grinned, "Well that's wonderful! And he very well should have a ceremony, but onto other matters now. I assume you are all aware of the chaos that has broken out in Albion between the citizens and Heroes?"
"Oh trust me, we had a first hand experience since our arrival." Jarissa answered, "We even saw what was left of The Guild itself."
"Yes, we know of the Anti-Hero League, the Guild attack, and The Witchwood Arena being used to execute our brethren." Kayma added.
"I assume Rook filled you in on those details?" Markeniss asked.
"Actually, no sir, they seemed to have found a journal along with a letter found on a fallen Hero and his wife." Replied Rook.
Markiness gave a curious look, "Really? May I see the journal and letter?"
"Of couse sir, here you are." Said Kayma as he handed him the journal and letter.
Markeniss had skimmed through the pages as he read every word with a saddened look and occasionally shaking his head in despair.
"By the Gods, what a tragedy." He said, "It seems he came to The Guild the same day I became Guild Master after Weaver retired and gone away. Although I do believe I remember the man when I told him and a small group of other Heroes to calm the crowds in Bowerstone before the mob attacked."
"What I'd like to know is who's running the Anti-Hero mobs and why?" Jarissa asked with a slight bit of anger in her voice.
Markeniss had replied, "That I do know. He goes by the name of Amos Mane or The Hero Butcher as he has become known as. Years ago, when I took Weavers spot as Guildmaster I sent a squad of Heroes and a very young apprentice overseas to the far west to save a countries capital city from being overrun, much like I did with you four. Amos was that young apprentice. I heard a rumor that they were all dead, until about four years ago when The Anti-Hero League tried to put a lawsuit on The Guild in the Albion Court. When I attended the case and when they called upon the head of the Anti-Hero League to come forward for questioning that's when I saw Amos."
"Well, it seems this Amos is still alive, but why would he go from Guild apprentice to murdering Heroes?" Jarissa asked curiously.
"I do not know Jarissa, nor do I know what exactly happened overseas during his training quest. All I know is ever since guns were brought here to Albion him and his organization went from protesting Heroes to slaughtering them which is why we formed this Elite Order to put an end to it." Markeniss replied.
"With all due respect Guildmaster, it doesn't seem like we've been making too much of a dent." Stated Rook.
Markeniss then replied, "It would appear that may be true, but I believe the tables may finally start to turn in our favor."
"What makes you say that?" Jarissa questioned.
Markeniss turned his attention to the young apprentice, "Your young apprentice here, he is our solution to all of this."
"How so?" Kayma asked with a confused tone.
"There is something I must reveal to all of you especially you my boy. Years ago during my first month as Guildmaster when your dying mother brought you here to us she had revealed something to me. Something of great importance before her death.... the identity of your father. You, young man, are in fact the son of the Jack Slayer." Said Markeniss.
Shocked and surprised looks came accross the other four Heroes faces including the young apprentice himself.
"What?!" Jarissa said aloud shockingly.
"Truly?" Kayma asked.
"I can't believe it!" Ami exclaimed.
"Mighty Avo!" Shouted Rook.
"Guildmaster, surely this can't be true? Any record of The Jack Slayer would've been destroyed in The Guild attack?" Jarissa replied.
"Yes, but luckily his mother gave me this..." As Markeniss set a Guild Seal down on the map table, "Your fathers Guild Seal. He was the mightiest Hero of the age and the power in his blood runs through yours as well. You my young apprentice will become the next mightiest Hero in Albion's time of need."
"I guess that explains why he showed quite a bit of talent for an apprentice." Said Jarissa.
"I can't believe this whole time we've been training the Jack Slayers son." Said Ami in a star struck voice.
"You my boy, have a great destiny ahead of you." Kayma said.
"Well, that all being said, let's proceed to give the young apprentice his graduation ceremony." Markeniss said.
"Very good, I'll inform Commander Crane to have everyone assemble outside by the Grey House." Said Rook.
"Very well." Replied Markeniss, "This shall be a night to remember always when your life as a Hero begins to unfold."