The Lives of Pawns
Volunteer Alexander Briggs
Town defender, hunter of Lycanthropes.
Volunteer alexander Briggs:
Men fear the dark. The thing under the bed, the bump in the night. The screech of an owl or the still night of a full moon.
Such as it was in the town of Mareden, a small town north of Pushkar, on the edge of the Oshire forest. A generally quiet, peaceful little town. Full of hope and hardworking folks just trying to eke out a life for their families. The quiet town, bordered by the many farms, was a self-sufficient unit, they had their own laws, customs, and holidays. It was a happy place, and young Alex loved it.
One rainy afternoon strange things started to happen near this town. Traders went missing on the roads, children wandered off into the woods and never came back, the graves of the dead were disturbed in the middle of the night. Even loud howling could be heard from deep within the forest.
Fear was building in this small town. Suspicion bloomed. An uncomfortable malaise set in. Teams were sent into the woods to investigate, but they returned with no trace of the missing children.
Late one evening, screams from one of the houses could be heard. The town guard rushed to the scene only to find claw marks on the doors and throughout the halls of the house. Steaks of blood painted the interior and what looked like a trail of dragged persons led into the forest. A team of volunteers was gathered, armed and were set out into the woods to chase after the culprit. The town was going to get to the bottom of this, in force.
A formation was assembled, roughly scattered through the dense foliage of the woodland, many pitchforks and torches brandished at the darkness to find the missing family. Alex was a part of this formation, but he nor those poor villagers were not prepared to face the horrors of the night.
There was a halt in the formation. Screams were heard from the left, then the right. There was a panic, men drew their weapons to face the darkness. There was never a fight, only a massacre. Men toppled to unseen foes. Their formation was broken, chaos ensued. The carnage of the battlefield lay before him. What young Alexander saw would haunt him forever. Gore, viscera, blood on a truly horrifying scale. The limbs of his family, his friends scattered about. Empty faces that stared at him in horror. Many corpses with no face at all, just hunks of once living flesh. He heard more screams from every direction. The tearing of flesh. His courage failed him, he had to run, he had to get out of there. He ran at full sprint back the way he had come as fast as his legs would carry him. But alas, he was not fast enough. Something had set upon him, chasing him through the wood. Alexander soiled himself in fear as he ran, screaming into the night, chased by a darkness fast approaching. Nightmarish visions of the fallen still burning in his mind. He ran.
It was not enough. He fell, pounced on by the horrors of the night. He was ran through…by something. As he was dragged to the ground he saw his entrails lying beside him. Blood pooling, Blackness swept over his vision.
The next thing Alex could remember was waking up in a bed, a bed he had been in a number of times before. That of the town physician. The shock of what he had witnessed paralyzed him for a week, before the old physician convinced him that he needed to find a new purpose in life, a way to move forward and seek out those who would harm humanity and bring them to justice.
Alex agreed and with a few trusty drinks from the old physician in his bag he made his way to Bhajana to gather for the festival in celebration of the God of Fire Agni in hopes to have a fire kindle in his heart and mind.