Book 8 - Conquest for the Truth - Chapter 11 - Past and Present

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httyyd
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Joined: 10/12/2013

Things are getting pretty interesting.  I didn't get to the part that I wanted to in this chapter with regards to the action, but all the prep work and set-up is now complete.  Chapter 12 is going to be very interesting and rather crucial to see if any of Jarl's crew can find a way to get even a small win.  Or will they be defeated again regardless of what happens?

 

Stay tuned and find out.

 

Btw, I tease the coming chapters because I am also getting excited and will start working on the next chapter tonight.  So maybe, a chapter tomorrow or Saturday, but we will see!  :D

 

Hope you all enjoy the chapter!

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Book 10 - The Shattered Axe

Chapter 17 - Back on Track

 

The Jarl Mollerson Mystery Series

All Chapter Links
 

 

Destiny in the Dark

Chapter 3 - Friends and Enemies

 

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Here are links to the chapters of my fan-fic series.  The books go in chronological order.

 

The Clue of the Missing Socks.

Chapters 1 and 2                         Chapter 3                                       Chapter 4

Chapter 5                                      Chapter 6                                        Chapter 7

Chapters 8 and 9                        Chapter 10                                     Chapter 11

Chapters 12 and 13                     Chapters 14, 15, and 16             Chapter 17

Chapter 18                                    Chapter 19                                      Chapter 20

Chapter 21 and 22                      Chapter 23                                     Chapter 24 and 25

Chapter 26 - There is a hidden surprise.  Can you find it?

Chapter 27                                   Chapter 28, Part 1                         Chapter 28, Part 2

Chapter 29                                   Chapter 30                                       Chapter 31

Chapter 32                                   Chapter 33                                       Chapter 34

Chapter 35                                   Chapter 36                                       Chapter 37

Chapter 38                                   Chapter 39                                       Chapter 40

Chapter 41                                   Chapter 42                                       Chapter 43

Chapter 44                                   Chapter 45, Parts 1 and 2

 

The Mysterious Frozen Fire

Chapter 1         Chapter 2         Chapter 3         Chapter 4         Chapter 5         Chapter 6

Chapter 7         Chapter 8         Chapter 9         Chapter 10       Chapter 11       Chapter 12

Chapter 13       Chapter 14       Chapter 15        Chapter 16       Chapter 17       Chapter 18  

Chapter 19       Chapter 20      Chapter 21        Chapter 22, Part 1       Chapter 22, Part 2 

Chapter 22, Part 3

Epilogue/Preview for my Third Story!

 

Thoughts of Guilt

Chapters 1 and 2          Chapters 3 and 4          Chapter 5          Chapter 6          Chapter 7

Chapter 8          Chapter 9          Chapter 10          Chapter 11          Chapter 12, Part 1

Chapter 12, Part 2          Chapter 13         Chapter 14         Chapter 15         Chapter 16

Chapter 17 and 18         Chapter 19         Chapter 20         Chapter 21         Chapter 22

Chapter 23         Chapter 24         Chapter 25         Chapter 26         Chapter 27

Chapter 28         Chapter 29         Chapter 30         Chapter 31         Chapter 32

Chapter 33         Chapter 34         Chapter 35         Chapter 36 and 37

Chapter 38, Part 1         Chapter 39, Part 2         Chapter 40, Part 3         Chapter 41

Chapter 42, Parts 1 and 2         Chapter 43         Chapter 44

Chapter 45, Part 1         Chapter 45, Part 2

 

On the Edge of Mystery

Chapter 1          Chapter 2         Chapter 3        Chapters 4 & 5    Chapter 6, Parts 1 and 2   

Chapter 7          Chapter 8         Chapter 9            Chapter 10       Chapter 11        Chapter 12

Chapter 13        Chapter 14       Chapter 15          Chapter 16        Chapter 17       Chapter 18

Chapter 19        Chapter 20       Chapter 21          Chapter 22       Chapter 23      Chapter 24

Chapter 25        Chapter 26       Chapter 27         Chapter 28        Chapter 29 Parts 1 and 2 

Chapter 30       Chapter 31       Chapter 32 and 33                         Chapter 34 Parts 1 and 2 

Chapter 35 Part 1         Chapter 35 Part 2        Chapter 35 Part 3        Chapter 36

 

The Secret Symbol

Chapter 1    Chapter 2    Chapter 3    Chapter 4    Chapter 5

Chapter 6    Chapter 7     Chapter 8    Chapter 9    Chapter 10

Chapter 11    Chapter 12    Chapter 13    Chapter 14    Chapter 15

Chapter 16    Chapter 17    Chapter 18    Chapter 19    Chapter 20

Chapter 21   Chapter 22   Chapter 23   Chapter 24 and 25

Chapter 26    Chapter 27    Chapter 28    Chapter 29 and 30

Chapter 31    Chapter 32    Chapter 33    Chapter 34    Chapter 35

Chapter 36    Chapter 37    Chapter 38    Chapter 39

Chapter 40 and 41    Chapter 42    Chapter 43, 44, 45, and 46

 

The Legend of Shadow Mountain

Chapter 1    Chapter 2    Chapter 3    Chapter 4    Chapter 5

Chapter 6    Chapter 7    Chapter 8    Chapter 9    Chapter 10

Chapter 11    Chapter 12    Chapter 13    Chapter 14    Chapter 15

Chapter 16   Chapter 17    Chapter 18    Chapter 19    Chapter 20

Chapter 21    Chapter 22    Chapter 23    Chapter 24    Chapter 25

Chapter 26    Chapter 27    Chapter 28    Chapter 29    Chapter 30

Chapter 31    Chapter 32    Chapter 33    Chapter 34    Chapter 35

Chapter 36    Chapter 37    Chapter 38    Chapter 39    Chapter 40

Chapter 41    Chapter 42    Chapter 43    Chapter 44    Chapter 45 & 46

Chapter 47    Chapter 48    Chapter 49    Chapter 50    Chapter 51

 

Teaser "Trailer" for Book 8 - Conquest of the Truth

 

The Crimson Storm

Chapters 1 and 2     Chapter 3    Chapter 4    Chapter 5    Chapter 6

Chapter 7    Chapter 8    Chapter 9    Chapters 10 and 11    Chapter 12

Chapter 13    Chapter 14    Chapter 15    Chapter 16    Chapter 17    Chapter 18

Chapter 19    Chapter 20    Chapter 21    Chapter 22    Chapter 23

Chapter 24    Chapter 25 and 26    Chapter 27    Chapter 28    Chapter 29

Chapter 30    Chapter 31    Chapter 32    Chapter 33    Chapter 34

Chapter 35 and Epilogue

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httyyd
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Drums R Round. Pi R Squared.

I forgot to put on the last chapter, but there should be an edit now, last chapter and this chapter is from Valkarik's Point of View.

 

For this chapter's music mix, here is the link:
1-Hour Epic Music Mix | Emotional Dramatic Orchestral Music Mix - Sad Music - Best Of Epic Music

 

Conquest for the Truth

Chapter 11

 

Past and Present

 

Valkarik's Point of View

 

         After taking over the ship, most everybody left.  Marth, however, came up to me to talk with me.

         “There’s one other thing,” Marth tells me, though cannot look at me.

         I guess, “Theo took out our father to take the throne.”

         Marth looks a bit surprised, but realize I am still a Shinfira, “How’d you find out?”

         “Even on my own, I still have my own contacts,” I inform.  “They still had connections to the Fifth Fleet through various trading outlets.  I would always ask them if anything had changed.  Through these channels, I pieced together eventually that Theo took over.  Though, never really made friends with my contacts.  Always kept people at a distance.”

         Marth points out, “That is until you met Jarl and his friends.” 

         I remember back when I first met Jarl, “We may or may not have gotten off the right foot.  But,” I sigh.  “For the first time, I felt like I needed to do something for someone other than myself.  The thing I was running away from was the very thing I always wanted… A family.”

         Marth counters, “But you had a family before.  You had me.”

         “Staying away as I did, hurt me to be away from you,” I tell my older sister.  “But I would do it again in a heartbeat.  I am telling you.  Theo has it all wrong.  Not only that, but what the Fifth Fleet is doing is wrong.”

         “Then you’d be in the minority,” Marth says standing up to mount her dragon.  “There are those of us here that still believe in what we are doing.”

         Look at her, I question, “What do you think?  Do you think any of this is right?”

         Marth looks down, sighing, “I’m not sure what to think.  I have devoted my life to the Fifth Fleet and its pursuits.  To suddenly go back on it now it seems…”

         I finish her thought, “…Losing a part of yourself?  But what I gained back, outweighs what the Fifth Fleet could ever give me.”  Tears come to my eyes, but I fight them off as I state with a determined tone, “A family who has my back, cares about me, and depends on me.  Jarl and his crew have given me more…”  One tear does escape as I conclude, “Than my own family ever did.”

         Marth sighs, “Well, I hope you are able to reclaim what you lost.”

         “What about my question?”

         Marth answers from the back of Mik, “I’m not sure of much anymore.  The only thing I am certain, Theo will lead the Fifth Fleet to its ruin.  Watch your back, Valk.  I may not be there to save you.”  Changing the subject, she adds, “Here’s the keys to the stall that your dragon is in.  He’s sleeping now.  But it would be best if you were the one who would wake him up.”

         Marth leaves and I am left alone on top the captain’s platform.  The crisp cold night air blows in my face and hair as we swiftly ride the waves of the sea at cursing speed.  I spend a moment to comprehend all that has happened.  I also bring to mind old memories I thought I had forgotten.

         My family.  The Fifth Fleet.  The only family I thought I would ever know.  I was born on this very ship, or at least that is what they told me.  Regardless, I never truly had a home like most do.  My home was the ship and my backyard the ocean.

         My father was the Fleet Commander, Valkarik Logen Shinfira the II, face of the Fifth Fleet.  His dragon was a Crimson Goregutter named Tyr.  These dragons are considered “holy” by the fleet because of how they are endangered.  My father, known as “Goregutter” or simply Logen, was the one to tell the fleet as to where to go and makes the last decision in an internal conflict.

         Logen was his preferred name, as he told me at a young age, “You may be named after me as I was after my father, but you deserve the name of Valkarik more than I.  You will bring honor and glory to the Fifth Fleet, but more importantly, you will bring honor and glory to the name of Shinfira.  It may seem daunting at first, but anything does to a Shinfira.  Follow your gut and let your heart guide you.  No matter what happens, you will be my daughter.  And nothing will make me prouder than that.”

         I look up, “If only you could see what has come of all of us now.  I think you may have other thoughts now.”

         Going back to the Crimson Goregutters, the Fleet Commander having one as their dragon is a rite of passage to fulfilling their duties to the Fifth Fleet.  These dragons’ rarity also directs the Fifth Fleet to use only the best out of the hatchlings when the Fleet’s Goregutters lay their eggs.  These best eggs are kept for breeding purposes, the rest our released into the wild, including the mother.  Now, I did not really know better at the time because I was raised in the Fifth Fleet, but looking back, this was wrong.

         High ranking individuals are the only other ones to have a dragon.  When a close friend or family members comes of age to that of eighteen, they are given a dragon.  They do have some say in what dragon they will get as they more or less had to hunt them down but with the objective of training them.  Their codename reflects the dragon they receive.  Yet, the codename is really only used in battle to hide our identities.  In extremely formal, traditional rites, our codename is used but in conjunction with our actual name.  Whenever the dragon passes, whether from battle or old age, the viking retains the codename even if they get another dragon.  Basically, the relationship of the person and the dragon is like a human to a work yak.  It is the number one rule in the Fifth Fleet:  Do not under any circumstances permanently bond with a dragon.  My father loved Tyr, but he and the dragon were working partners.  If the dragon was trained right, they would not have a permanent bond either.

         Back to the family -related or unrelated- business of the Fifth Fleet, vikings generally worked in the close environment of the five ships.  At times we had more than five or less than five, but there were always five main ships; hence the name of the fleet.  The Fifth Fleet deals in trading dragons for major supplies, armor and weapons.  They will also auction off dragons to the highest bidder too if they need the quick gold.  Under my father, we made enough to make a living, but only to that point.  While we were basically Dragon Hunters then, my father treated every dragon with respect and only dealt with traders who felt the same way.  That is what people told me, but maybe I am trying to remember my father in a positive light, not as a Dragon Hunter from what they are now.

         Each sector of the fleet has their own “Supervisors” in charge of one of the main ships and a squadron of Hunters of various skills, abilities, and duties.  The Supervisor is to keep the Fleet Commander updating on everything they see and to keep in touch at regular intervals.  Supervisors are the authorities on their ships, so they keep the general order within their sector and must maintain the ships in seafaring order.  Each Supervisor knows quite a few tactics to get out of a fight.  They are perfectly capable in one-on-one combat.  They should also be able to work in tandem with the Fleet Commander in any sea battle.  Strategy is king, or at least it was before I left.  A similar game to Maces and Talons was often played with ships to test the strategy of the high-ranking officers all the way to the Fleet Commander.

         A few notes on the Fifth Fleet:  My family’s fleet of ships is often called the Fifth Fleet mainly due to the number of Supervisors.  The Fleet uses both manpower and dragon-power to move their ships.  With manpower, they use viking bondservants who are kept on the ships who perform small jobs.  These jobs include cleaning and rowing the smaller ships.  They are fed well though, as if they were part of the Fleet.  These bondservants are vikings working to pay off debts or serve time for punishment from various ports we visit.  While they are pretty loyal to us, we still need guards moving through the ships at all times.  Because of our business, we often had undesirables of all kinds come into our midst trying to start mutinies every other month.  The dragon-power uses dragons captured to help propel our ships and other dragons not suited for such a task yet not good enough to be sold are used on the main ship to forge metal.  Depending on the species, they were also used to lure and attract other dragons to an area for capture.

         While I am thinking about what was, I find myself now walking through the ship on my way to the stables.  I forgot how huge these ships are.  More than fifty feet wide, four decks including the top, and more than thirty yards long.  And this is just this ship.  The Fleet Commander’s ship is bigger.  More than sixty feet wide, five decks including the top, and more than forty yards long.  All the ships have two sails and one main sail.  On the main sail resides the Fifth Fleet’s seal.

         From what I remember what the Fifth Fleet was about and did compared to what I see now, I see Theo has made the Fifth Fleet truly like Dragon Hunters, maybe worse in some cases.

         For starters, Theo did permanently remove our father as Fleet Commander just so he could usurp the throne and be the Commander before it was time.  If the Fleet Commander perishes before the oldest son is eighteen, then the oldest son takes over where the last Fleet Commander left off.  However, their code name still reflects the first dragon they had because they are supposed to take the Crimson Goregutter for their dragon.  But when Theo took over, he kept Arken, his Grim Gnasher as his dragon.  Probably did not go over well, yet no one stopped him.

         Theodor Logen Shinfira is quite a crafty and cruel man, underneath his calm demeanor.  He was rather quiet when we were kids, but I always saw it there.  Hardly anyone else did.  They thought he would just learn and get over it.  He never did.  Theo never liked me.  I think I am the main reason why kept going the direction of self-centered jerk.  Though he is crafty and cruel, I wonder if he will still crack under stress and pressure?  If so, maybe that is something I can exploit.

         From what I pieced together from many rumors and stories from the Fifth Fleet after I left, Logen was becoming skeptical about Theo’s ability to be able to keep the Fifth Fleet safe and out of needless battles.  Thinking he would not get the opportunity to take over the Fifth Fleet, Theo devised a plan to kill off our father and take his place.  A few years ago, Theo was successful at his plan, hence why he is Fleet Commander now.

         Since then, all I have heard is that things have gone badly.  Theo reduced the food quantity for the now slaves and prisoners.  He stockpiled metals and dragons.  I have heard the Fifth Fleet is starting to think Theo no longer cares for what the Fifth Fleet’s business has been for generations, but only for what he can get for himself.  Through my contacts they had heard that maybe Theo had struck a deal with another Dragon Hunter/Trapper Group.  Maybe Vixxen and Theo have some sort of deal going on.  Does Vixxen plan on double crossing Einar?

         On the subject of prisoners, they still look like they receive food, but not necessarily a great portion of food.  They look to be thin compared to the Hunters and main Sailors of the ship.  Under Theo’s command the food has become worse and even the sailors are starting to suffer too.

         I think to myself as I finally near the stables, though I was walking slow, “I wonder if I could tear down Theo’s rein from the inside?  Maybe it is up to me to save those in the Fifth Fleet.  Would be cool if we could get them to come to our aid and then have an element of surprise over Einar’s Fleet.  Though in doing so, it could be the end of the Fifth Fleet because his Fleet outnumbers us like ten to one.  But I’m getting ahead of myself.  First things first.”

         While I could have just walked to the front of the ship from the top deck and merely went down a level, my thoughts made me inadvertently take a tour of the ship.  Now at the stables, I find where my dragon is being held, still sleeping in his stable.

         Unlocking the door, I then ease up on my Flame Whipper, whispering to her, “How’s my Alpinny doing?”  She slowly wakes up and is happy to see me, though still groggy from the sage fruit, “There’s my girl.”

         Giving my dragon a hug, she purrs and wags her tail knowing that I am safe.  Though still recovering, I lead her out and she starts to following me.

         From behind me, I hear an all too familiar voice, “Get your hands off me.”

         Turning around… I see Ali.

         A few guards are leading her down the hallway with Undyne muzzled and restrained to the point where she can only walk.  The guards lead them both towards me and do not know what to do.  They have Ali’s hands cuffed behind her back.

         Minute or two later, the guard walks right up to me, “Theo told us to bring this girl and her dragon to you.  Where would you like to put them?”

         Thinking to myself, I say, “Oh he did, did he?  I see what he is trying to do.”  I want to give him and the guard a piece of my mind for the way they are treating my best friend.  But this not the time nor the place.  “First figure out what Theo is after, then create an epic mutiny the Fifth Fleet will never forget.”

         Not wanting to say anything, I motion for them to put Ali and Undyne in the cage where Alpinny had been.

         “Who’s there?” Ali asks.  “Is that your Supervisor I have heard so much about?”

         While I want to hug her so bad right now just to tell her it is alright, doing so would be show that I am not with the Fifth Fleet.  To find out what Theo wants, I have to become a Dragon Hunter again… Even if it means going against my friends.

         “Yeah,” the guard gruffly says.  “Be careful what you say to her.”

         “A girl, eh,” Ali steps right up to me, not knowing who she is talking to.  “You claim to be a viking, yet look what you are doing to dragons.”  She points to her Thunderdrum.  “You’d rather make a quick loot grab of gold than ever find out what it is in these magnificent beasts.  The way you are treating me and the other prisoners, you don’t care who gets in your way.  You and your kind of no regard for other people.  You just go where you please, take what you please, and don’t care what happens to anyone but yourself.  You’re scum of the earth.  You don’t even deserve the spit in my mouth.”

         The guard leads Undyne in but then shoves Ali down into the cage, clanging the door shut.  They clearly see she is blind, but they do not care.

         The guards stand proud as they look down on Ali, “What we’re doing does pay well.  Under the kid’s leadership, we have never been so prosperous before in the Fifth Fleet’s history.  He has brought power and glory to our ranks.  Something that his father never could.”

         They both walk away, yet I stay behind.

         Ali senses I did stay, yet she still cannot tell that it is me, Valkarik.  She is usually keen on the scents and smells of a person.  Although, smelling like fish before this and then adding on the slime of the eels, even I do not smell like I should.  In a way, I think it is for the best.  I cannot reveal my identity yet.

         “Why are you still here?” Ali comes right up to me, still not knowing it is me, yet Undyne recognizes who I am.  “Here to see your handy work?  I’d try to get you to see reason, but I think you all are beyond reasoning.  I can see better than all of you.  If you treat those that work for you with less dignity than you do your dragons under your own care, how am I supposed to talk with that?  You people talk about power and glory, but what about loyalty, trust… Honor?  Gold, glory, and power will only get your so far until someone else tries to take what you have.  Someone took my sight, a physical thing.  I have had to learn to live with this.  They say I may get my sight back, but in the same breath say I may never get it back.  If I live waiting for the day I might get my sight back, I will miss what today has to offer.  If we keep trying to store up physical treasures in this world, we will miss the other treasures this world has to offer.  Everything in this world is fundamentally this.  Friendship, a family of friends.  You may have gold, you may have power, but what is it if you cannot share it with someone?  Gold cannot buy you happiness.  Gold cannot even buy you protection.  How do you people sleep at night, knowing that you may be the next one that gets offed?  You think you are the only thing in this world.  But there is one other thing.”

         Ali pauses, “There is love.  Love of a friend or family is much more precious than gold.  The love will take care of all my needs beyond what I need because I am blind.  Being around friends who care about me and have my back, I often now forget that I am blind to the point I now joke about it.  But there is still times I cry about it and wonder, ‘Why me?’  But my answer is always the same, ‘I still have friends that love me and care for me and want to help me in anyway I they can.’  What do you have that I don’t have that is so special?”

         Because I do not want to say anything yet, I do not reply.

         “Didn’t think so,” Ali answers and turns her back on me.  “I don’t know why I told you all this anyway if you’re not going to listen.  Get out of my sight,” she slides her back on the wall to then sit down.  “What you stand for reeks more than you do.”

         I do start walking away, but both Alpinny and Undyne do not understand why Ali was talking the way she did and why I am not replying to her.

         Going away from Ali, what she says has cut me to the heart.  Both Ali turning her back on me and Jarl looking at me with upmost disgust and distain are things I will never forget.  Granted, Ali does not know it is me, but if I am acting like a Dragon Hunter just so Theo does not lock me away in a dungeon, for my own safety, am I not the same now as I was when I left Jarl?

         The same feeling, I am feeling now is the feeling I had after I handed Jarl over to Vixxen, double crossing Jarl.  All I ever wanted was a family that cared for me.  Even to Ali, I never talked about my family to her.  So, for her to say that about my own family, what I grew up doing, has now instilled in me the need to make this right.

         “The Fifth Fleet must be either turned or defeated.  That means going back on the legacy of my father, everything I thought I knew, and taking a stand against my own flesh and blood,” I tell myself as I think about Marth.  “They all they think they are in the right.  I have got to show those who still believe in the history and what the Fifth Fleet used to stand for and show them it can still be that today.”

         Another thought then occurs to me, one that for the first time ever, no longer scares me, “If I have to sacrifice myself to show to everyone else just how far we, the Fifth Fleet have fallen, I will certainly do so.  If it means my blood family and my new family could finally live in peace and harmony with each other and with the dragons.”

         Needing to clear my head, I tour the rest of the fleet.

Winged Warden
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Joined: 01/04/2016
Wanna know how I feel?

Thanks a lot for making me feel emotions for this chapter httyyd.
(JK, your writing is fantastic)

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