‘To the east you must go. The spirits have come to me, and said that there is a place, recently uncovered ruins. And within those ruins you will find a way to another of our precious creches.’
Those were the words spoken by the ancient Shaman Xcratl, spiritual leader to the 5 tribes of the Lagarto. and so a group of Lagarto went, led by the Shaman Iztrola. He led a small group of Lagarto, and 4 Cierto Lagarto, as he was not certain of the Shamans words. But he led his people east, nearly to the foot of the Dragonwall mountains.
When they crested a small hill they saw a group of human soldiers arrayed at the base of a cliff. And lo, in the cliffside there were ruins, clearly ancient beyond reckoning, and constructed by the Ancestors. This time the Shaman was correct. But what were these humans doing here? Were these more of those odd southrons? And worse, were they desecrating the ancient places?
Iztrola arrayed his force and approached the ruins carefully. Waiting until they were in easy speaking range. He spoke to the Cierto Lagarto in the language of the Lagarto, told them to watch for trickery.
Rising from the ground, he spoke.
‘What are you doing in this place? Do you desecrate our ancient grounds? Leave now and your sins may be forgiven.’
The soldiers immediately snapped to attention, springing into a tight combat formation. One of them shouted words in a strange accent. And more of the soldiers came down from the cliff. It was now clear that these were not southron soldiers, they spoke differently, and wore very different armor and weapons.
One of those who came down, not a soldier based on his dress, uttered arcane words, and motioned to another one. That one, a tall, well built human in nicer armor stepped forward.
‘I am Centurion Gaius, of the Empire of the Sun, we are on our way south to investigate reports of more settlers there. We came upon these ruins, and managed to root out some gnolls and a basilisk. We know nothing of these grounds being sacred, but know that this land is claimed by the Empire.’
‘We know nothing of this Empire, nor do we recognize any claims on our ancient grounds. You say you are on the way south, it is best for you if you continue south and leave this place.’
‘I cannot leave this place in the hands of some monstrous filth, clear off beasts.’ With that the leader turned and assumed a position in the line with the rest of his soldiers.
Iztrola could not believe the effrontery of these upstart humans, they were worse than the southrons he had had dealings with. At least those did not call names, and acknowledged the truth of ancient claims. He turned and gestured, and the Lagarto began their attack.
It was a short, and brutal, fight. The humans, seeing that they were heavily outnumbered, and shocked by the strength of the Cierto Lagarto, executed a well done retreat and moved south. Iztrola chose to not let his people chase. Instead, once the area was cleared, ordered them to consolidate and fortify the area.
He climbed up into the ruins, and following the whispers of spirits he could hear only faintly, began to explore, seeking the creche. He ordered his assistant to send word back to Xcratl that yes, there were ruins, but it would be in the best interests of the people for them to send more troops to the area as he did not know if these strange soldiers would return.
I wrote yesterday about how the boys would begin to enter into a clash. I am envisioning that the area they were adventuring in will soon become a no man’s land. An area where multiple nations and peoples are coming together. Coming into contact with each other for the first time.
And the actions of the boys will go a long way to determining how things go in that area. Which nations will turn hostile. And what mysteries exist in this land?
And I am continuing to play with the conceptions of traditional fantasy with this. Instead of the traditional Orcs, Goblins, etc. instead there are other human nations, and other races of creatures. I am enjoying pulling all of this together. It will be interesting to see how and when the group begins to realize what is really happening.