Wilhan Dragonslayer -- a Ring Sword Saga
Caution: This Fantasy Sex Story contains strong sexual content, including Ma/Fa, Fa/Fa, Consensual, BiSexual, Fiction, Historical, Incest, Sister, First, Oral Sex, Pregnancy, Cream Pie, Violent,
Desc: Fantasy Sex Story: Chapter 1 - A young warrior grows to be a man and fights to protect himself and his homeland with the help of a mysterious sword. Walk beside him as he builds his life on the blood of his enemies and the support of his family to become one of the most powerful men in his tribe. Set in a fictional world but (hopefully) historically accurate to the Germanic tribal era, with some Viking bits thrown in.
It was the time of the blood moon as Wilhan, son of Yanceod, moved silently through the dark primeval forest. The spear in his hand was heavy as he went on his lonely way, but he was glad to be alone. He was glad that Guthram had turned back. All Guthram had done all morning was complain. The downside was that Wilhan now had to run the trap line by himself and deal with any problems that might arise. Resetting snares was no problem, but resetting heavy deadfalls was easier to do with two people. And there was always a chance of encountering a hungry bear, wildcat, or pack of wolves in the forests of the frontier. Such beasts usually avoided grown men, but at thirteen, skinny Wilhan could hardly be called a grown man.
He was not afraid to spend the night out all alone; he had the means to start a fire, and for defense, in addition to the spear, he carried his father's longsax, which, hanging from his belt, looked like a short sword. He was too thin to carry the long knife across his waist, as a true warrior of the Juxan tribe normally would. He also carried a small skinning knife and a hatchet. Any wild animals hungry enough to eat him would most likely already be dead in the baited traps, he hoped. So far that day he and Guthram had caught two rabbits and a polecat. Guthram had made Wilhan skin the polecat in case its stink gland got damaged in the process. There was a bit of a smell but nothing too bad. Guthram took that pelt and the rabbits home when he decided that he wasn't feeling well. Feeling hungry and scared was more like it, Wilhan thought.
Wilhan had hoped to eat the rabbits later that day, but that was not to be. At least he didn't have to carry them any more. The only thing Guthram carried on their outings was a bow and light pack. Guthram did leave Wilhan the entrails, though. The hearts and livers would be good roasted over a fire. He had used the rest to bait deadfalls.
Cold weather had come quickly after the harvest, and the day was crisp and clear. The early onset of winter was why they were running the long trap line a little earlier than usual. They anticipated a long hard winter, and they wanted to get as many prime pelts from the ridge and beyond as they could before snow kept them closer to home. Guthram's older brothers had stayed back at the farm with their father to chop firewood and go through their daily weapons practice. No doubt Guthram thought he would miss the wood chopping and be back in time for practice.
Guthram's father, Tobsil, had sent the two boys out to run the traps because the skies were clear; the two of them shouldn't have had any problem staying out overnight because of the weather. Tobsil had always treated Wilhan as a man, at least as far as work was concerned; and work was about all Tobsil concerned himself with, that and turning his sons into warriors. Wilhan's father had lost a considerable amount of money to Tobsil in a wager; actually it was a loan from Tobsil and a wager to another man. Wilhan wasn't sure which had come first, but the result was that Yanceod went from being a freeman and a warrior to a farmhand with a five year indenture.
Wilhan's mother had died when he was ten, before that, Yanceod had not been much of a father. He spent his time going on raids and gambling away most of his earnings. After his wife's death he gambled more heavily, trying to win enough money to support his son, or so he said.
Life on Tobsil's farm was not that bad for Wilhan, even though he had inherited the debt when his father was killed. The accident occurred when a heavy beam slipped as they were raising a new barn. Tobsil and his three oldest sons, Fexrem, Tarmiz, and Ranis, treated Wilhan fairly and with respect, even though he was usually stuck doing the jobs of the thralls, the farm slaves that Tobsil owned. Some of those jobs, such as herding, were also 'boy' jobs, and Guthram was stuck doing them too.
Guthram, who was only half a year older than Wilhan, did not like the idea of having to do menial jobs that his older brothers were exempt from, and he took it out on Wilhan by treating him like a thrall whenever he could. Usually that meant whenever the two boys were told to do a job together, Guthram would supervise or take the easier half of the task at hand.
Tobsil and the older brother's did their best to control Guthram's behavior so that it didn't go beyond being moderately irritating to Wilhan. Yanceod might have been irresponsible with money and a poor family man, but he was still a warrior proven in battle, and he was respected for that. In fact, Tobsil and his sons probably had more respect for Yanceod than Wilhan did, because Yanceod was the reason behind all of Wilhan's problems. His mother had been unhappy before her death from the fever, and Wilhan's life went downhill after that, culminating in his father getting killed by not paying attention when the big beam was being put in place.
Wilhan knew firsthand that glory from surviving a battle didn't fill your belly. Unlike Yanceod, Tobsil rarely boasted of his exploits on the battlefield. He did boast about the number of cattle and acres of grain that he had as a result of the riches he brought home from those battles; from that, Wilhan saw the real way to become successful. So even though he was not allowed to train -- it was not Tobsil's duty to train his servant for battle -- Wilhan watched and practiced on his own, and he sparred with Guthram whenever the fancy struck the older boy, which was usually by way of a sneak attack.
Tobsil was wealthy enough to own a sword, and he did, but he had not bought it. His battle axe was responsible for getting him that sword. It had convinced the original owner, a big Nwevi warrior with a knot of red hair adorning the side of his head, that he didn't need it anymore. Tobsil still remembered that fight: he blocked the overhead slash of the sword with his axe handle, brought his own shield down on the man's foot, parried the sword to the side, and then reversed the motion of the axe to catch the man under the ear. He could still remember the sound of bone and teeth shattering as the bronze axe head made its grisly way through the man's face. Tobsil was a young man then, not much older than Fexrem. He was raiding and fighting for his clan and his tribe to secure the frontier and beyond. At that age he valued the prestige of the sword as much as its usefulness in battle. He learned how to use it but carried it on his side as a backup weapon, relying instead on his axe for most close fighting; he didn't want to chance damaging the blade if he didn't have too. A broken sword was not nearly as valuable as an intact one. Plus it gave him the option of throwing his axe. Throwing a sword and then going to the axe was not as effective as a tactic, not by a long shot.
He could have sold that sword for half a dozen cows; nearly five year's income for a farm hand, and enough to start a small farm, but owning the sword was a matter of pride. When the time came to settle down on a homestead he didn't need the money the sword represented; he had been lucky in battle as far as spoils went, and he had been a skilled gambler before he gave it up. His skill was partly due to his practice of not drinking as much mead as the men he was betting against, but mostly it was due to knowing the odds and never making a bet based on what he hoped an outcome would be. He didn't play favorites, not with anything more than a token bet, anyway.
Fexrem would inherit the sword, and it was promised to him for his next raiding season, but Tobsil had all of his boys train to use it. In reality they rarely got to touch the sword, instead they trained with wooden swords. Mostly the boys trained with other weapons, though. Shield and spear was the primary combination used by most warriors at the time. If you lost your spear, you went for your axe, sword, or the shorter longsax. Battle axes were the weapon of choice for raids. When raiding, you didn't let your target have time to line up against you with shields and spears; you generally had to work close in, and sometimes bash doors down. In most cases a good axe man could take out a poorly trained swordsman, and it wasn't that difficult to get good with an axe. But if you knew how to use one, a sword had definite advantages.
Without Guthram to slow him down, Wilhan decided to jog the trap line instead of walk it. The first part of the route followed a ridge that was covered in dense dark pine forest. It then descended to the Turtel River which wound around and through a break in the ridge a few miles from the farm. Their farm creek ran to that river, and once the deep snows came they would trap the lowlands along the creek, but for now they had traps set along the ridge, its far slope, and the river.
Even though the tribe had pushed the previous residents across the Aydren River -- forty leagues south of the ridgeline -- the ridge served as the unofficial southern border of both the Elksen Clan, and of the Juxan tribe as a whole. There was still undeveloped farmland and pasture north of the ridge, so no one had moved south of there yet.
Before heading down slope to the river, where he hoped to catch mink, beaver, otter, and maybe even fox, Wilhan had caught and skinned two snared marten, and a lynx that had succumbed to a deadfall. His chosen location for cooking his lunch was a small rocky beach just downstream of his first river snare set; a slide otters used to enter the water. That snare marked the start of the long, winding route back to the farm.
When he got to the beach he saw three dugouts pulled up on the far bank just below the rapids. Their owners had decided not to wrestle them up another section of cold shallow water, and the boats were too heavy to portage without a good reason. Wilhan knew that the only reason for anyone to come upriver was to raid. This was the tribal frontier, and there were no trading towns for a long way. The Juxani had pushed the Nwevii south across the great river only a generation ago. A few generations before that, the Juxani had been forced out of the fjord lands of Werimar, the small island continent to the north, across the Blensin Straits. The Juxani were slow to colonize their southern territory because the conifer forest of the ridge was not good land for farming or raising flocks. Anyone moving past the ridge to homestead would be isolated and vulnerable.
The Juxani were not the only people moving out of Werimar. The northern coast of Aydres was a place of tribal conflict and contested borders so the Juxan kings and their clan chiefs wanted to keep their people close. There was still enough land north of the ridge to support the growing population, but the frontier north of the ridge was rapidly being settled.
There were three farms within a day's walk of the river from the place Tobsil's creek joined it, so Wilhan turned back the way he had come. He had to warn them, and going back over the ridge was faster than going upriver, not to mention that that was the direction the raiders went.
The south side of the ridge was the steep side, but the adrenalin of seeing the enemy camp took Wilhan to the top quickly. Once there, he took up a steady walking pace to let his pumping lungs and quivering legs recover. As he traveled, he tried to reason out how long it might take the raiders to walk upriver from their boats, but he gave up after realizing that he had no idea how long the boats had been there. Once he recovered from the climb he began to alternately jog and walk; but soon he was lightheaded from foregoing lunch, so he stopped to eat some of the cheese, dried meat, berries, and pounded oatmeal he had in his pack. At least he had been smart enough to refill his waterskin at the river.
He hated to do it, but he rested to let the food settle, and to regain his strength, before setting off again. It was midafternoon when he started downhill again and he still had more than two miles to go to get back to the farm. He picked up his pace, but tripped trying to go down slope too fast. His spear went flying, but the thick layer of pine needles and the soft ground underneath cushioned his fall.
When he reached the edge of Tobsil's fields he knew he was too late. The dogs were barking in their pen, and he could see black smoke coming from the longhouse they all lived in.
Earlier that day eleven men, with their long hair tied against the side of their heads in war knots, watched the farm from a distance. Their initial plan was to attack just as it was getting dark; but the dogs were penned up for some reason, and from their hiding spot in the brush next to the creek they had watched the farmer, three younger men and two farmhands go away to their tasks after they finished their lunch. It would be much easier to kill the men when they were spread out, so the leader made the decision to attack while the men were out working.
The raiders were just about to move out when a boy came to the longhouse carrying two rabbits. That held them up for a while until they saw the boy go inside. When that happened, seven of them started out under the cover of the forest for the clearing where the three younger men and the farmer had gone to chop firewood. The raiders had heard the faint sound of axe hitting wood coming from that direction before the four came in for lunch, and axes meant trouble. The remaining four raiders could take care of the women and the boy, and the two other farmhands if they returned.
The leader waited what he thought would be long enough to let the seven get to their destination. He could have waited longer, but the woman stepped into the longhouse, leaving no one outside to observe their approach. Seeing that, he set off at a run towards the house with the other three following close behind.
The farmer's wife had little time to raise a warning before she was cut down, but it was enough time for the boy to grab his father's sword and come out the door. It did him little good. The girl, who looked to be about twelve, started screaming inside the house, but she was soon tied up and gagged. Her screams started the dogs barking, and that drew the attention of the men out working.
The four raiders ransacked the house and set its thatch on fire just before they saw a man approaching with a wood-chopping axe in his hand. The leader ordered two of his men, his best fighters, to take care of the farmer while he carried the girl off. He was certain that the two men could handle one aging farmer, so he ordered the third man to follow him with the bag of loot. They would wait for the others at the edge of the forest.
After the two of them made it to cover with the valuables, all hell broke loose.
Wilhan, coming from the far side of the farm, rushed to set the barking dogs free. They had been penned up behind the new barn during the day because most of them were still little more than pups, and they had taken to chasing anything that would run from them, including the sheep and goats. Winter would see them either broken of the habit or turned into stew, but in the previous weeks, life had been too busy on the farm for anyone to take the time to work with them.
Once free of the pen, the older dogs took off at a run, not towards the house, but towards the woods where the brothers were supposed to be chopping firewood. The rest followed the leaders.
Thinking that the dogs were worthless and had decided to run off, Wilhan ran towards the burning house. As he rounded the corner he saw Tobsil with an axe and a piece of firewood facing off against two men, each of whom had a shield and an axe.
Wilhan shifted his father's spear for an overhand throw, and when he got to within a dozen paces he heaved it with all of his might at the back of the nearest raider. His thin arm was not very strong, nor was he very accurate, especially at a run, so the spear nearly missed its target and just glanced off the big man's ribs. The heavy spear did get caught in the man's fur outer garment and the distraction was enough for Tobsil's axe to find the man's leg and bite into his knee, but before Tobsil could get his battle stance back, the second raider's axe came down on him.
Tobsil was able to just barely block the axe with the piece of firewood he was holding in his left hand, but the force of the blow knocked the wood back, and it struck him in the temple stunning him. A bash from the raider's shield then put Tobsil down on one knee.
Not sure what to do, Wilhan reacted by grabbing the raider's axe handle as it came back to deliver the killing blow, and with his other hand he ran his sax down the handle to slash the hand that held it. The blade cut off the first two fingers it came to and freed the axe from its wielder's grip, but the man's grip on his shield was still strong, and a bash from that sent Wilhan flying.
Seeing his mangled hand, his crippled comrade, and the dangerous farmer start to recover, the raider decided to run off the way he had come.
Tobsil's head injury left him staggering, and a recovered Wilhan led him away from the crippled raider, and sat him down on the ground. The Nwevi's leg was nearly severed, and when he had lost enough blood to approach safely, Wilhan finished him off with Tobsil's axe.
Looking around, Wilhan saw both Guthram and Grunhild, Tobsil's wife, dead near the front of the burning longhouse. Shortly after that the three surviving brothers came up from one direction, and Deve, the old thrall who had been with the herds, came from the other direction. The third thrall was a cowardly man and had run for help, and to save himself.
"They have my sword, my silver, and your sister." Tobsil said to his sons.
Fexrem, Tarmiz, and Ranis were in shock at seeing the burning house and the dead bodies of their mother and little brother.
Wilhan spoke up, "I know where their camp is. We can beat them there. How many are there?"
"There were four at the house. Two ran off with the valuables and two stayed to fight me -- so three from here." Tobsil said.
"Three of the seven that attacked us ran off, but one had an arrow in him." Fexrem added.
Grunhild had been cooking rabbit stew and brown bread for dinner when the raiders attacked, so without asking, Wilhan began eating and urged the three brothers to eat and then gather food and weapons. Tobsil was too woozy from his injuries to walk or to think straight, but he knew someone had a plan and initiative, and that was needed right then; he trusted his sons' skill, so he told them to follow Wilhan.
Fexrem started leading everyone towards the sound of the dogs, but Wilhan told him to stop; that the short way to the camp was over the ridge. "They don't know this country and have to follow the river back. We can beat them there and set up an ambush."
By the time it was fully dark Wilhan and the brother's were over the ridge and coming out of the pine forest. They couldn't follow the trap line if they wanted to find their way in the moonlight, but each of them had been in that part of the forest many times and knew how to get where they were going by a different route.
Along the way, Wilhan told his story and the others told theirs. When the dogs started barking, Tobsil headed back to the house, leaving his sons to finish their work. Soon after that the three brothers saw movement in the forest and thought it might be deer, so Ranis strung his bow and slipped into the trees. When he saw that men were sneaking through the trees towards his location, he didn't hesitate and sent arrows into two of them before they charged. Ranis held off one man with jabs from the end of his bow in one hand and a small axe in the other. As that was happening, Fexrem and Tarmiz were fighting using two-handed wood-chopping axes. Then the dogs showed up.
The older dogs attacked the intruders, but the pups just jumped around and barked. The raiders couldn't fight the dogs and the boys both, so they decided to retreat and fight the dogs as they went, but only three made it away from the clearing.
Fexrem was nineteen years old, and had spent the previous summer away from home raiding for the first time. Tarmiz was seventeen and Ranis was sixteen. Together the three of them were good enough with weapons to stand up to most warriors, if the numbers were even, but without the dogs they would have been killed, even after Ranis had reduced the odds with his arrows. The men they faced were hard, seasoned killers, which was why they had set off to raid with so few men. They might even have regrouped and attacked again if not for the two wounded and the fact that they had most of the farm's valuables; silver coin, gold jewelry, a sword, some miscellaneous iron tools, and a girl at a good age to sell as a brothel slave, or maybe even as a personal slave.
"I hope they don't do anything to Ethanda before we find them." Wilhan said. He didn't especially like the girl, she was a little too much like Guthram, but he had heard that slavers sometimes did unspeakable things to girls.
Fexrem had seen some of those unspeakable things that summer; he had even seen one of his shipmates rape the body of a dead girl during one of their raids. The Juxani and the other northern tribes believed that killing an enemy pleased the gods. Sneaking theft was dishonorable, as was killing from hiding with a bow, but if you attacked someone face to face, even if they were unarmed, you gained honor by killing them. The same went for anything else you did to show your power over them, such as raping the women, or even raping the men. Most men didn't get that carried away with the bloodlust, at least while fighting was still going on, and slave girls were worth more if they were still virgins. It was usually the women who were used after a raid, along with captured warriors who had fought fiercely and were to be tortured to death for their trouble; but doing that to another man was an acquired taste, one that Fexrem wanted no part of. Tobsil had taught his boys that killing was business. Keep emotion out of it, and keep control. The gods would understand, and if not, they would curse you with the berserker rage so that you had no choice, something that many warriors saw as a blessing.
"I think she'll be OK," Fexrem said. "She's worth more if she's unused, and they have wounded to worry about."
As they traveled, the boys discussed the best way to ambush the men, and they decided on a spot a half mile above the beached dugouts where the trail passed between a big windfall tree and a high bank. They had to cross the cold river to get there. Fexrem had them take off their boots and trousers to keep the items dry. The river was groin deep for Wilhan at its maximum; its water was swift and its bottom was covered in slippery rocks large enough to twist an ankle. It was not a good place to be caught by an enemy, but the boys made it across without incident. When they got to the site of their planned ambush Wilhan, as the smallest, was elected for the most dangerous job, that of getting Ethanda out of the line of fire. He was partly elected because it was his idea.
Wilhan hid in the bend where the broken roots emerged from the base of the trunk. He hunched down there, and the brothers covered him with leaves the best they could. In the moonlight filtering through the leafless hardwoods of the river bottom he looked like part of the tree.
An hour later they heard the men coming down the trail, stepping on and stumbling over branches that the boys had placed in their path.
The third shadow in the line was much shorter than the rest, it had to be Ethanda. Her hands were tied and a lead rope was around her neck.
As the first man passed within inches of his body, Wilhan could smell the stench of unwashed body and adrenalinic sweat, the cat-piss odor that came with fear and the anxiety of waiting before a battle; in this case, waiting for the chance to move on the farm house followed by the disaster that came next. The leader hadn't relaxed until he was certain that no one was following. Soon he would be at the boats and be able to leave. In his head, he was trying to add up his extra profit due to the unfortunate reduction in their numbers.
Wilhan waited as the second one passed. His right foot was firmly pressed against an indent in the soil, and his legs were ready. Now! She was in front of him! Wilhan rushed out so low that he barely made it off all fours before he crashed into Ethanda's hips and tackled her.
The girl's surprised cry signaled the three boys with bows to draw and shoot at the line of shadows. They had decided not to call out during the ambush so as not to warn the enemy. That gave them an extra shot before the men reacted to the twang of bow strings, but it put Wilhan in danger because the men's attention was focused on what was happening to their captive for that much longer.
Of the first volley, an arrow hit the leader and one of the two men at the rear. Three more arrows were in the air before the other men could react, and one of those arrows took out the man that had been walking behind Ethanda.
The commotion gave Wilhan a chance to get off of her and get his feet back under him. As he stood up, he pulled his father's sax from his belt and got it ready. Ethanda's captor thought that the girl had just tripped, and he barked an order at her as he yanked on her lead rope to get her up. He didn't realize that the shadow that had just stood up wasn't the girl until the sharp point of Wilhan's blade penetrated his abdomen. The second strike of the big knife missed his neck and slashed his face. That caused him to stagger back off the path to get away from the attack. By that point all of the raiders, wounded or not, knew that they were under attack and were yelling to each other.
Wilhan knelt back on the ground in case any more arrows were coming, and he loudly whispered, "Ethanda, stay down and crawl over against that log."
At the second bowshot, the lightly wounded leader and the unwounded man at the back of the line -- the man who had lost his fingers to Wilhan back at the farm -- rushed the shadows they thought were archers. They were correct in their assumptions but were greeted by spear points from Tarmiz and Ranis before they could use their axes. Fexrem had been stationed behind the midsection of Wilhan's log. He put down the third man from the end -- the man carrying the bag of loot -- with his second arrow, and then he pulled out the small axe he had stuck in his belt and jumped the log. Rushing past his sister, he put and end to the man Wilhan had wounded.
"Where's the sixth man?" Wilhan asked the shocked girl.
She didn't answer, so he hugged her and told her she was safe.
"Ethanda, we have to know. Where is he?"
"Th-they killed him ... and the dogs, too."
"OK, that means we're safe. They're all dead."
"He's at home with a bump on his head. He'll be fine tomorrow."
Fexrem came over to check on his sister. Preferring her big brother to Wilhan, Ethanda pushed away from the boy and hugged him.
"Light a fire so we can search these bodies and get our belongings back." Fexrem said, to no one in particular.
After searching the bodies, they huddled by the fire until daylight and then decided to go down to the raider's camp. There they found the three dugouts that Wilhan had seen, a cache of food, and loot from at least one other farm. That told the boys that at least one of their neighbors had been attacked, and since there were no slaves taken they figured that it was Muosler's farm.
Mousler, his wife, and his two sons were dead. He had no daughters left living at home, and no male relatives, so the clan chief, Engruth, allowed Tobsil to keep what the boys had found, along with some of Mousler's stored food to make up for what had been burned, but he took all of Mousler's livestock and the man's grain harvest for himself. Before he left he swore that the Elksen Clan would seek revenge on the Nwevii ... next spring.