Ever since I was a small child, I watched as my dad smelted and hammered away at the worlds greatest tools of war. His crafstmanship was second to none, he weaved metal like a tailor weaved fabric, it was stuff of fairy tales. His forearms were thick and veiny, a scarf of white wirey hair wrapped around them. Metal was his world, sometimes I wondered if he loved metal more than my mother, a woman of great talent as well, but despite all that talent she rarely smiled. While dad was out hammering away, drawing crowds of dozens of onlookers, mom sat in the house alone, sometimes crying, other times just lost, staring into space.
I was so lost in the awe that was my father that I too barely payed attention to her. This went on for years until finally, we awoke one morning and mom was gone. We thought at first she might have went to fetch some supplies, but days went by, followed by weeks and eventually years. She never returned and every attempt we made to locate her failed. It didn't bother us as much as most would think, we just continued living like we normally did; outside near the forge.
Close to seven years passed when we got word of moms whereabouts, a hunter named Tade, said she found a skeleton near a den of wolves she had vanquished earliar. Mom always wore a special pendant that dad made, it was cylindrical that tapered at the bottom and top, etched with specialized markings that date back hundreds of years. It was supposedly a magically embued item that would forever protect mom, but since she died, I didn't believe in its magic at all.
Tade removed the pendant from her leather back pack and handed it to dad. He dropped to one knee, with pendant in one hand, the other, flat against the ground. A barrage of tears fell from his dreary brown eyes, and a subtle wind blew the bottom portion of his white beard into his face. It was coarse with hints of black hairs, remnants of his younger self.
I couldn't cry, I wasn't really close with my mom and at the time, I guess I didn't understand the nature of her death and what it meant to pass on to the world of the fallen. All I knew was that my dad was at his weakest point, for the first time ever in his life. It was difficult seeing a man that was so physically strong, on his knees, crying over a bullshit pendant. Tade bowed, said her sorries then walked off into the sunset with her hunting dog in tow.
Tade was that epic beautiful, the sort you only heard about princesses being. But she was no princess. Raised by a family of hunters, she was rather hostile, but reserved for the most part. She had incredibly long golden-blonde hair, the type that shines in the sunlight, which she kept in three unique braids. Her face, very pronounced and tight, muscular. Her chin was small, but defined and her lips were often different shades of color. She was a little bit older than me, but walked with the stride of an adult, purely graceful and ready to fight at a moments notice.
Back at the house, dad sat me down and placed the pendant on the table. He looked at me, his head shaking left and right, followed by yet another flow of tears. They streamed down his face and got lost in the white forest on his face. Why the hell is this goliath crying, I thought. I didn't understand the idea of crying, but it soon became apparent. Dad was heartbroken, despite not paying attention to mom, he loved her more than any man could love a woman, but he had issues of his own. Rather than be intimate with her, he pushed her away and smashed steel. They used to talk and laugh together a lot, but as times grew tougher and more dangerous, dad had a job to do and that was to provide weapons for the warriors in the kingdom of, Isis.
Mom came second to that duty and rather than accept it, she fell into a depression that consumed her. That's too bad, she had great talent and could of been a professional alchemist. Her concoctions were all over our house, on shelves, on books, in cupboards, everywhere. I never tried them before, dad said they were medical, potions that cured and provided resistence to poisons and diseases such as, Throt and Finkleberry. Throt ate you from the inside, while Finkleberry plagued your bloodstream, shutting off your vital organs. I suppose it was good to have such potions around in case of an emergency.
Dad leaned over and put his hand on my face and told me he loved me, not too worry, and if I ever needed anything that I could just ask. I knew that went without saying, but I nodded because he was just trying to reassure me that he wasn't going anywhere. Just after our little father son conversation, a loud knock at our door shattered the mood. Dad got up and walked over to the door, it was Tade, she was barely clothed, with an arrow lodged in her right shoulder. My dad sat her down and said, "oh god, are you alright?".
Tade was frantic, she couldn't sit still, her body trembled. In spite of the condition she was in, I couldn't help but stare at her impeccable body. I moved over towards the fire place and watchedas the candle glow flickered and danced on her sweaty skin, I stared pathetically at the bloody cloth holding her breasts together, down to her rib cage, then around her stomach. A small skin roll had formed below her belly button as she sat huddled up, crying.
"...bandits, sir, they...broke into our house on the hills, slaughtered my family as we slept...almost got me, but I slipped out the back and ran for the ravine behind our house and came here," muttered a frieightend Tade. Her voice low, but it was mesmerizing, it had a hint of an accent I never heard before, probably, Beric, from Berinia to the South.
Dad stood up and went around behind her, placed his big mitt on her back and used his other to grip the arrow and without warning, pulled as hard as he could. The arrow came out with its head, thankfully. Blood gushed out of the wound, I remember nearly passing out as it splashed all over my fathers arms and feet. But I had to compose myself, had to look good for Tade. She collapsed deeper into a huddle, crying and moaning. I walked over to her, bent down, and then held her hand, her fingers were thin and soft, but her grip was unquestionably powerful.
Dad attended the wound with one of moms great potions, while I attended Tade, tried to keep her calm. I grabbed a wolf-skin blanket and wrapped it around her, then fetched the tin kettle, poured her a cup of hot tea. There was a small crack between the blanket that revealed her incredibly breasts that caught my full attention. “Ganlas? Ganlas?” she said, indirectly covering herself. I sort of laughed, as did she, her face went red and she hid behind her healthy shoulder. Her big pearlescent eyes stared at me from behind her shield, I couldn't help but stare back. Slap! My dad hit the back of my head, told me to go get some fresh clothes from moms room.
Really? A slap, dad? I thought walking to the back of the house, into my parents room. It was small, but loaded with trophies and crafts of all sorts. The bed was solid oak and a bear hide hung from the corners of the ceiling. Moms chest was a big piece of solid furniture, loaded with expensive jewels. I rummaged through her closet, pushing aside memories of mom, her red dress she wore at her wedding, the white robe she received after her alchemy training, none of it though, meant anything to me personally.
I returned to the main room with a handful of random clothing items, placed them on the table and sat next to Tade. She flipped through them, stopping at a leather outfit dad had created for moms weapons training. She never got around to actually going to the training, so it sat in the closet all these years. Tade got up, I knew right away, so I told her to my parents bed room. Dad had already geared up, shield, armor and sword, all had crafted by him. I knew what he had to do so I threw him a container of mead, told him good luck. He nodded, dashed out the door and ran towards the hills passed the rock cut leading to Isis.
I wasn't worried, Dad was a fierce warrior, he killed twenty two trolls single handedly in his teenaged years. He was a monster when he wanted to be. A few bandits wouldn't harm him. Tade came back in, looking sharp as ever, the leather conformed to her body perfectly. She let out a smile and hid behind her shoulder again.