Valley of Hills I

Nykita born in the year of the monkey, pointy ears and an ability to move unlike any other human. The more she finds out, the more the world sheds its vial and reveals itself. Humans are bound to their humanoid vision. Warriors and kings images are peeled back. Arcane kin, demons and unnatural beings are showing their true forms. These are what we used to be until we blocked the world out and created our own worlds.

Chapter I

Sounds of spring and carbon steel sliding against one another echoed throughout the forest above. A woman peered out from the side of the Valley of Hills looking out below. Her lean yet muscular build was firm, gripping the inclined earth beneath her feet. She followed the clatter of swords and shouts down into the emerald ravine at the bottom of the hill.

She chuckled, ‘they will never change,’ she thought to herself as she squinted her eyes. The gorge at the bottom of the hill stood solitary in blankets of large vibrant hills cascading around it. Warfare was seen at the very foot of the hill. Man against man. Puddles and pools of blood stained the ground. The woman watched the grass die, gasping for air, suffocating underneath the thick blood. Immediately turning a nasty brown color where the dead fell. Caught sight of a man who appeared as a chief warrior walking amongst the carnage and almost rheumatic flow of battle dancing around him. His sword was sheathed, which was pretty ballsy, the woman chuckled again. He did however readied his hand as it hovered over the sheath as he walked, ignoring the bloodshed around him. The woman took a closer look at the chief. She thought to herself, 'it appears he's looking for something.’ The man had a hood on and so did all of his men. They were more than 25 soldiers, dressed in black and gold with everyone hooded as some had masks hiding their noses and mouths. Pretty distinctive as kinfolk. The chief pushed his hood back, he wore no mask. Upon his right shoulder, he wore what looked like bone carved into a shell replica of his own shoulder. Its visibly thick leather belt held it together along with his left shoulder cover that was of the same dense leather. Other than the bone shoulder-plate, this brave human only wore knee and elbow guards also out of bone above his clothing. Much less than his warriors. She took a breath when she revert her gaze upward as he took his hood off.

“Skeletons” she whispered out loud.

His hair was black and shaved on one side with thick talon-like tattoos running all along his skull. The black tattoos clawed out from his hair onto his face where it bleed into more ink. Around his temples. Ink surrounding both his eyes. His entire nose. Blacked out cheeks and teeth, designed from cheek to cheek. The man looked like a skeleton with white flesh as muscle. The woman took a breath. There were always stories told of the Skeleton warriors, baring skeleton like tattoos covering their entire bodies. She was to young to remember how they looked, just imagined. What she imagined was of a lesser image that what she saw in this man. These men she watched fighting below her, the chief, their appearance alone demanded respect and the atmosphere they brought was in reality intimidating. The Skeletons were savage humans who were taken lightly because of their black inked skins but rode through more battles than any other humans and prevail, without allies.

Analyzing the general, the woman watched his eyes lift from the ground, for the quickest moment and looked straight at her. At least 50 miles high, on the large hill distended in front of his men. Standing still she stared back at him, faintly seeing his eyes but feeling them on her. The chiefs’ gaze was cut as he pulled from the woman and rapidly slid his sword out and directly jolted it forward straight through an on-coming foe's throat. He pushed his foot against the corpse’s chest to retrieve his blade and looked out of the corner of his eye up the hill. She was gone. He made a low grunt and struck another foe,  severing his head clean off with one upward swipe of the blade. All to quick to register. 

The woman pressed upward of the steep hills of the valley. What could he have been looking for? What was so important down there? The woman thought to herself, must be pretty damn special for people giving up their lives for it. For whatever reason. She rolled her eyes, making herself frustrated. She could not take the ignorance of pointless killing and wasted blood tainting the earth. The woman, lost in her thoughts, thought about how much blood these grounds have actually seen. How much or how deep it ran into the earth. How blood of the fallen bleed into the soil, becoming part of trees. Becoming part of the air.

“Disgusting” She blurted. Her arms were bent behind her in the air, cradling her head as she walked. She closed her eyes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

“Aidenyle.” The chief turned his focus away from the hills leading toward the Seacliff Forest,

 “What is it?” The tall man sheathed his sword, turning to face a man armored with heavier bone. He was shorter than his chief, Aidenyle. Every man in their army were. His build was thicker and defined and he bore a lengthy warhammer tipped with spikes on his back. Some of the other warriors took their hoods off or pulled their nose and mouth masks down, as the ground were rid of unskilled rivals. Their tattoos displayed resemblance to their master’s. Thick, dark sketches of bone and teeth. Aidenyle however did not receive his tattoos from humans as all his kin did. At times, the difference was irrefutable. Men and women of the Skeletons exhibited the markings throughout their whole bodies but never did anyones look as exhaustive as Aidenyle. His eyes appeared sunken in the black ink of his eye sockets. His nose, though sharp, straight and perfectly angular did not look existent with the tip blacked out. His mouth, his cheeks, bore a haunting grin of realistic teeth that smoothly ran into the painted maxilla and mandible bones. He was refined.

“Ser, our men have searched. Looks like these bastards never had it.” Aidenyle gazed behind his battleman, bothered by the update. His eyes studying the corpus of bodies. He swung his gawk upon the hills again, his eyes torn wide. She had tattoos.

 

                The woman crouched on one knee. She had woven thin branches many feet above the ground together, crafting a hammock of leaves and bristles. Her light and compact frame moved through the tree tops with silent grace. Her toes gripping the shrill bark-encrusted branches. Her feet wrapped in bamboo linen with her toes and heels exposed gave her control as she made not a sound, descending towards the ground. The pine trees of the Seacliff forest were minimum of 200ft and the woman swiftly climbed almost half of the tree as she climbed back down nearly 100 ft. Head facing the ground she halted in mid-descend. Her eyes stalled, blankly staring at the ground. Her dark curly hair hung beside her face, leaves fell past her. She focused her mind to her ears and they moved. One twisted slightly to the left where she had heard movement. She waited before moving, to hear something else. She turned her head into a scent, left and quite a distance away.

                She peered up, stood and ascended high enough to see the ground through the trees. The scent grew stronger and she watched the forest floors. Her ears twitched again to the sharp noise of heavy armor clanking on an invisible path. It was straight ahead, her long ears unnaturally flexed forward. She knew she couldn't have been seen but primal, she lowered her stand and crouched. She saw perfectly with a thick branch extending in front of her face blocking her from the nose down. Her eyes amplified.

The End

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