Disclaimer: I own and claim no rights to Touchstone Pictures' "The 13th
Warrior." This idea has been invented by my insane mind, and all original
characters are mine.
Ahmed ibn Fahdlan ibn Alabas ibn Rashid ibn Hammad stared at the messenger
before him with a shocked frown. Glancing from the bundle on his table to
the messenger, he murmured a quiet, "Where did you get this?"
Hassan blinked confusedly. "From merchants traveling from the North.
Apparently they spent a long time searching for whom they called Ibn, or
"The Arab." Fortunately one of them spoke Latin and we were able to
discover the identity of the recipient as the Ambassador to the
North...you. They explained that it was an extremely important matter,
otherwise we would have dropped inquiries."
Ahmed lifted from the fur satchel it's only content: a stone figurine of a
headless, legless female, wide and voluptuous. "The Mother," he whispered.
Hassan's eyebrows rose in curiosity. "Sir?"
Ahmed looked up and jerked slightly. He had forgotten Hassan was there.
"Forgive me. I wish to thank you for bringing me this. Talib will see to
it that you are fed and paid for your trouble."
Talib, one of Ahmed's servants moved forward from his place just outside
the door and gave a small bow to Hassan, motioning him to follow. Glancing
once more to Ahmed, Hassan followed the servant from the room.
Ahmed stood from his seat and approached the open windows, the humid breeze
caressing his already flushed face. In his hand he gripped the figure
severely, his knuckles white. Memories of what happened so long ago
crossed his mind. Absently, he placed his free hand on his face, slowly
tracing the three scars still there, but small and faded with time.
Sixteen years, sixteen long years since he had viewed the shores of Venden,
or the face of Herger, a man he considered a good friend. Over the years
he had wondered whether Herger was alive or dead...and he thought of her.
Olga. A north woman, born to a primitive and barbaric people, or so he had
thought when he first viewed the Northmen. After fighting beside them and
shedding blood with them, he saw them in a new light, one filled with
honor, and humor.
Now, with the memories of everything he had discovered both in himself, and
in the Northmen fresh in his mind, he brought the statue of The Mother up
to view it in the morning light. There was no confusion as to what the
message was. The wendol have returned to destroy Venden and it's people
once again. And someone, Ahmed smiled to himself, most likely Herger,
wanted him to return to fight with them.
After so many years, he would return to the north land, but this time it
will have not been in shame, essentially exiled by the Caliph. Nor through
coercion by Northmen to join their cause. No, this time, it shall be of
his own free will and with the clear knowledge that death may very well
await him there. Remembering Herger's words to him the first night they
fought the Wendol, (where Ahmed subsequently received his three scars)
"Your Fate is fixed. Fear profits a man nothing."
He had learned better then to try and argue with Herger. The cocky and
jovial Northman only proved his point in the end. Turning, he called a
servant to bring him Melchisidek, and prepare suitable travel arrangements.
A/N: Read and Review please! Thank you.