A century ago a group of fanatics tried to create hounds that could hunt mages and magic users. They succeeded but things went wrong and the hounds got loose. Not only could they feel and follow magic, they pulled it into them. When they bit a mage they would suck all the magic out of them.
Of course when they bit a regular person or animal they sucked out their life energy too. They bred fast and created packs and those spread and created more and ... a century and the whole country had packs that hunted any and everyone. They hunted wild and tame animals and did not care if they ate what they killed.
Because they had magic in them their bodies could regrow a limb or heal from wounds. They used the magic to become stronger and faster with longer teeth and claws. Towns and cities were walled and the walls grew higher as the hounds continued to change. Even farms and houses outside of a city raised tall walls.
I was born on a large farm, there were two large stone houses and four huge stone barns. On the edges of the fields were watch towers raised ten paces into the air. Teenagers took turns in them to watch and warn of any hounds so the animals and people could get back inside the walls. Even the weapons had changed over the century.
They went from swords and bows to rifles and pistols. First there had been muzzle loaders and then steel or brass chamber cases had been made. People did not travel and if they did they also found shelter behind walls each night. No one was turned away because it could mean their death.
I was sixteen and I hated the hounds. We and everyone else were trapped and hiding from beasts while they ran free. I almost had enough to go buy a rifle so I could kill a hound if I saw one. On our farm there were ten families and we lived and worked together. I did have a friend that was a girl but with so many people around it was hard to be alone or do anything.
I had watch tower duty and took my pack across the fields to the one close to a strip of woods. On the other side of the woods was a stream and on the other side of that was the fields of another farm that had been abandoned. After the other boy left I pulled up the ladder and tossed my pack on the bed.
I looked out the narrow windows and sat on the tall stool. It was a slow day and I ate my dinner early. That was when I heard the howls and snapped up and started banging on the large metal rectangle. I was looking back towards the farm as everyone looked and then started running and pulling cows, goats and sheep.
I did not stop until the gates banged close and turned to move to the other side of the tower. I heard guns firing on the other side of the woods and my heart started pounded, “someone is caught.”
The firing stopped and I heard screams and cursed and slammed my fist against the wall, “FOUL BEASTS!”
The sun went down and the farm rang its bell and each of the watch towers answered to let them know we were okay. I did not sleep and kept looking out all night. When the sun rose there was no sign of the hounds. I saw the teenagers coming out of the gate and heading to the watch towers and checked around the tower once more before I lowered the ladder.
The girl that climbed up smiled, “you okay?”
I shook my head, “the damn hounds got someone on the other side of the woods. I am going to go see if anyone made it.”
She hissed, “Charles...”
I grabbed my pack, “just watch.”
I climbed down and waited until she pulled the ladder up. I headed towards the woods and my heart beat faster. I slipped from tree to tree until I saw the ford at the stream. Three wagons were there and the horses were dead and shriveled still in their harnesses. Men were sprawled out beside one wagon and a few close to a tree.
I looked around before I moved away from the tree I was behind and waded across. I checked the wagons but there were only chests. I went to each man and this was my first time seeing what the hounds left. I knelt and took over and under pistols off the ground and then belts and holsters.
I broke them open and used the bullets and reloaded them. I slung half over my right shoulder and under my left arm and the other half over my left shoulder. I found their rifles where they had been dropped. Most were twin barrel side by side but one was an over and under, and then I found two tribarrel rifles.
The dead men still had the belts of ammo which I took. I was standing to return to the farm when I saw a hound moving along the side of the woods. I spun as my mind screamed and I knew I would never make it to the farm or even the tower. I splashed through the stream and my eyes went to a tall tree.
I slung the rifles and belts and when I reached the tree I leaped and caught a branch. I knew the hounds could climb but in the upper branches I had a chance. I did not stop or slow as I scrambled up and finally moved out on a branch. I started taking the rifles off and could see the hounds in the ford.
I hung the rifles from a branch to the upper right and then started on the belts with the pistols. Each belt had two so it did not take long and I looked down as even more hounds howled from across the stream. I grabbed the over and under rifle as the first hound leaped and started to climb. I was cursing as I tried to aim but there were a lot of smaller branches.
I was not going to shoot into the body and finally I had a shot and fired. The head jerked and gore exploded out one side and then it was falling. Two more were climbing as the body bounced and fell. Even more hounds were arriving so the pack must have been very large. I killed another with a shot through the side of the head.
I quickly hung the rifle and grabbed another. They howled and barked and climbed and I killed each one. After the third rifle was empty I started using the pistols. When the last fell I was still searching for more. I quickly reloaded everything and put them on me and waited and finally began to climb down.
The hounds stuck in the tree I yanked and dropped until they were all on the ground. I was careful as I checked each one and then waded back across to the wagons. I had seen a long sword and went to get it and the scabbard. I also pulled out a chest and emptied it and pulled it after me. When I returned to the hound I began to hack and cut off their heads.
There was a bounty of one gold piece for every mage hound and I had killed twenty one of the foul beasts. I put the heads on the chest and grabbed one end and started pulling as I headed home. I saw the girl watching as I came out of the woods and started for the walls of the farm. She rang the triangle so that by the time I reached the gate it was open.
The farmer, master Shilling looked at me from the gate, “you okay boy?”
I grinned, “I am fine sir.”
I dropped the end of the chest and turned to point, “the damn mage hounds are not so good.”
He stared and then grinned, “you killed the whole pack?”
I nodded, “on the other side of the woods. Men with three wagons were caught. I did not see any hound bodies so either they missed or the hounds healed themselves.”
He snorted as he pushed the gate open wider, “that is why we do not travel.”
My mind was already spinning with what I had done, “I will travel sir and hunt the foul hounds.”
He shifted, “Charles...”
I shook my head, “I am not hiding from them anymore.”
I went in and kissed my mother and looked at my father before I packed and left. I pulled the chest back to the wagons and sat and looked at them. With the horses dead I could not take them. I finally started searching and found everything to reload ammo in a chest in the lead wagon. I also found a type of two wheeled cart they had taken apart.
I put it together and then put the chest with the reloading press in it. I added my two packs and set the rifles on top. I went to take three more double rifles and that was when Heather found me. She had a pack and waded across the stream and I looked at her, “what are you doing?”
She smirked, “leaving with my man.”
I hesitated, “it is not safe.”
She took her pack off and set it on the chest, “I can reload while you shoot.”
I smiled, “okay.”
I removed the hound heads and cut a hole in the ear of each. I used cord to tie them together and we dragged them and pulled the cart. We went passed other farms and they looked at us strangely. In the town of Holis I let the magister examine the heads and he gave us twenty one gold pieces.
I gave Heather one and kept another and put the rest in the chest. I went to see the town mage for a charm and night glasses and she went to get bread, cheese and meat before we left. We stopped a couple of hours before the sun went down at a farm. They let us use the attic in one barn. We made dinner using a guest stove and then grabbed the rifles and climbed to the attic.
It had been a long day and I slowly undressed as Heather made a bed over a mound of hay. She grinned as she turned and pulled her dress up and off. I stared at her bare breasts and she reached out to stroke my cock. I groaned and moved towards her as she backed and then laid on the bed. I knelt and then moved over her and her hand guided my cock.
I kissed her and pressed and she clutched me as my cock was forced into her. I buried it and settled and she groaned and shifted. I hesitated, “your maidenhead?”
She pulled my face down for a kiss, “mom broke it. She said it hurt so bad when she lost hers that she screamed and the whole farm came to see what happened.”
I grinned and kissed her back and began to grind and press and then I pulled back. She gasped and her pussy clenched and I sank back into her. I fucked her slowly and used deep thrusts and she hugged me and kept lifting her hips. Several minutes and I was using firm strokes and she was jerking and spasming, “aaaahhhh!”
She bucked and wiggled and squirmed and I finally buried my cock and held her as I pumped strong spurts of sperm. She shook and clutched me when she felt it, “mmmm!”
Her tight pussy constantly gripped and clenched as if milking my cock. When I finished I kissed her and held her under me as I began all over again. It was awhile before I stopped and she looked smug and satisfied. I leaned to the side and pulled out a package and unwrapped it. I turned and fastened the silver chain around her throat and moved the moonstone.
She grinned, “to keep me from getting with child?”
I nodded and gave her a kiss before I laid back. I woke to a bell and distant howls and rolled out of bed. I dressed quickly and went to look out the window slit. I shook my head and unlatched the window and pushed it open. I went to get the night glasses and then we set the rifles against the wall by the window.
I leaned out and could see clearly as hounds raced across the fields. They vanished from sight on the other side of the farm wall. I reached for a rifle as I had a bad feeling, “get the ammo belts ready.”
Suddenly the light from the moon seemed to vanish but I could still see with the glasses. The first mage hound just seemed to appear on the wall and I aimed and fired as it moved toward one of the corner towers. The side of its head exploded and it fell off the wall and into the compound.
Another leaped onto the wall and I shifted, aimed and fired. The men and boys in the corner towers were yelling and someone inside the main farm building answered. I handed my rifle to Heather and grabbed another and got ready. Soon I had killed eight and they were coming over the wall faster than I could shoot.
I grabbed one of the tri barrel rifles and looked down and saw one of the hounds breaking the front door of the farm house down. I aimed and fired and its head sprayed gore as it dropped. I aimed straight down as another growled below the attic window. I fired and its brains were blown out through the bottom of its head.
Heather did a good job of reloading and I thought the last one was dead. I had a double rifle to my shoulder and was searching the compound and the wall. A huge hound leaped from the roof of the farm house. The distance was impossible but it kept coming and I fired just before it came in the window.
The round punched through the mouth and out back of the head and it slammed into me and I spun and let the rifle fall as I pulled a pistol. As fast as it came the sudden darkness was gone and the huge mage hound was dead. I put my pistol away as lanterns were lit and light filled the inside of the walls.
I grabbed the sword and pulled the hound to the window and pushed it out. I closed the window and started climbing down. No one came out as I slipped out the barn door with Heather. I searched the area and then moved to each hound and cut the head off. There were eighteen and after the last head was at our cart we went in.
I used the water pump in the barn and stripped and washed. We fell asleep and did not wake until the watch towers rang the morning bells. The farmer and his men came out slowly with their rifles. They searched for more mage hounds while Heather and I packed up. We cleaned our rifles and filled water bottles before we left.
The next town was only an hour away and we followed the road to it. We were almost to the city walls when the watch towers in one field began to ring an alarm. People were running for the city gates and I set the cart down and moved back as I looked across the field, “how can there be more this close?”
Heather shook her head as eight mage hounds ran out and started across the field. I grabbed a tri barreled rifle as they headed straight for us and ignored people closer. I took a knee and used the cart as support as I aimed. I squeezed and the rifle kicked and I shifted as the head of one twisted in a spray of blood and gore.
I fired again and shifted once more as the next hound died. I killed a third and turned and set the rifle down as Heather pushed the other tri barrel rifle into my hands. The mage hounds were a lot closer and I aimed and fired and shifted to do it again. I fired a third time and dropped the rifle as I stood and pulled two pistols.
They were almost to us and I aimed and fired and the head of the first seemed to explode as it dropped. I lifted the other pistol and fired both barrels into the head of the last and it crashed and rolled and stopped five paces from us. I looked and then took a moment to reload my pistols and grab the sword, “they were hunting us.”
Heather followed as I walked out to take their heads, “maybe they smelled the blood from the others?”