Conquest of the Picts

Wild: Hiya peoples! I just recently saw this movie, and I must say that I saw plenty of opportunities for the story to be continued, if in a different fashion.

Aiya: yeah, some old fashioned Roman/Picts! Sis thought it'd be fun to do something of a twist with Quintus Dias' continuing story.

Wild: Arianne has died after a year of being with Dias, and now, he is captured once again by the Picts. However, this time, the Picts have plans to keep him alive and captive forever as a pet.

Aiya: So he is placed in a strong Pict's grasp, a powerful warrior that is not used to being challenged of defied. How will a former Roman soldier change everything in the Picts camp?

Italics = thoughts

I

Quintus Dias, the Second in Command to the Frontier Garrison, had been his title at one point. He used to be able to say that title with honor and with command over all his soldiers, the soldiers he placed his trust into.

But now, after becoming a fugitive to the Roman Empire, and having the entire Ninth Legion's death upon his shoulders, he could no longer think about such things, let alone utter the words.

He sat in front of the burning stack of wood that crackled inside the small hut he and Arianne shared. He stared at the burning embers, seeing images of his life as a soldier flicking in the crimson and burnt orange. He flinched and turned around abruptly, brought out of his world of memories by Arianne's hoarse coughing and moaning.

She lay on her small bed, shivering and curling as tight as she could beneath her fur blanket, the one Quintus had crafted from the warm hide of a wolf he had hunted for her. Now her hair had faded from its angelic golden blonde to a pale, pale white. Her eyes had once been beautiful, but were now dull and distant. She was sick, ran a fever twenty-four hours every day for the past two months. She had been unable to leave her own bed.

Now she found herself sick and bed-ridden and unable to move hardly an inch. It was painful for her to even sit up to eat her meals, to suck even the drippings of honey from a bowl. She was dying…and it made Quintus weep every night in his sleep.

"Arianne? What's wrong?" he asked her, kneeling by her and carefully lifting her up to her head lay on his knees. He stroked aside her hair, matted from sweat, and felt her forehead. "Arianne, you're sweating up a storm and you feel extremely warm! We need to get this blanket off you!"

"No!" she cried out, holding it firmly in her tiny grasp, shivering and shaking, her eyes rolling to the back of her head before focusing again. "I-I'm s-so c-c-cold," she stuttered, shivering before coughing again, her chest heaving. Then she was gasping for breath, trying to inhale deeply, but her lungs were quickly failing, and the night was young. "Q-Quintus?"

"Yes?" he whispered, staring down at her with love and adoration. This witch had survived all alone until a year ago, when he had come back to her with a wound created by his own "allies" within the Roman Empire. And now, their relationship had barely advanced, and this misfortune befell them. Did the gods truly hate him so?

"You need-to live on…for both of us," she whispered, smiling at him. She reached out her hand slowly, opening her tight grasp to reveal the wood carving of the roman horse he had made for her a year ago. It still looked as beautiful and newly made as it had the day he'd left it in her care. "Y-You have to live, Roman."

"I am not going to live if you aren't with me, Arianne…I love you, as I have since the day I met you. I will not live unless you're by my side," he whispered, leaning down and kissing away the heart-wrenching tears pouring down her hot cheeks. "I love you, Arianne."

She smiled weakly as her heartbeat began to slowly disappear, her body shaking uncontrollably. Her eyes met his in a pleading, adoring way as she whispered, "And I return your love, Quintus Dias…remember…remember the life you lived, and live on just the same…live-with my spirit-guiding you…watch for your golden eagle…I l-love yo-uuuuu…"

Her eyes rolled to the back of her head and the tight grip she had once held onto the horse with vanished, and the hard wood collided with the ground, and his eyes stared at her peaceful face. He clenched her hand and ran his fingers tightly through her hair.

"Arianne?" he whispered, staring at her in grief and disbelief. "Arianne? No…you can't do this to me! Arianne! Arianne, wake up!"

He shook her body helplessly as his own eyes welled with tears of sorrow and remorse. He leaned down, pressing his forehead to hers, breathing, trying to breathe life back into her body. He lifted his gaze to her face and he whispered, "Please Arianne. Don't leave me here all alone. I can't stand being left alone again…I have no one. I had no one except you,
Arianne!"

He tried to coax her back awake, but her body remained still, lifeless, and unmoving. He stared in disbelief and slowly, his shoulders began to shake and quiver with sobs wracking his body. His tears coursed down his face as he watched yet another of his dearest friends, and the woman he had hoped to marry, die in front of him again.

He leaned forward, holding his face in his palms, letting the sobs control him and the tears to conquer his state of mind. He leaned back on his heels and threw his head into the ear, letting out a piercing mix between a roar of fury and a cry of agony. It echoed for miles, traveling even to the Picts ears, and every Garrison, man, or beast within the area.

Birds scattered outside as the cry died down with Quintus colliding with the floor, his emotions too powerful to keep himself awake. He stared vaguely at the carving he had made of the Eagle of Rome, and reached out, clutching it. And in his other hand, he never released Arianne's lifeless hand.

I

The village of the Picts mourned in front of their leader at the news of their brethren, and their best tracker/hunter, Etain, being killed. They wept and many cried, vowing vengeance against the Romans who had once killed Gorlacon's son, and now their best Roman killer.

Gorlacon stood in front of his weeping people and was fuming with rage before he turned to his people and cried out in their language, "The Romans will pay! Etain's death would not have been in vain! I know that with so many of the Ninth dead, the last survivors will be hiding somewhere Romans will never touch."

The Picts cried out in anger and fury, crying out for vengeance, and the men stepped forward in eagerness.

"They must be hiding somewhere right beneath our noses. They adapted to the forest, so search everywhere, and never rest, never sleep until you bring me back the survivors, alive and body in tact!" Gorlacon cried out, and the women screamed with desire to kill for revenge of their comrades, and for Etain.

Gorlacon silenced them and summoned a group, a very special group within their village, led by a strong man of the age thirty-seven years old and of fine build. Dark hair was braided down his back with gentle wisps curling around his angular face. Piercing blue eyes gazed back at Gorlacon, his prized male warrior, and the strongest behind him. The man's name was Mammon.

Gorlacon summoned Mammon and his legion of men to stand and kneel before him. Horses were brought out, equipped and ready for departure immediately.

"Mammon, you and your men must be our wrath and vengeance. Etain has failed to return, and has died because of these Romans. It is now your duty to track them down, and bring them to me…now go, and be by sword," he said in a civilized voice, much like that of a commander, as he was the leader.

Mammon looked up at Gorlacon and slowly stood up, nodding and beating his clenched fist against his chest.

"I will bring back the leader myself, and break him for you before everyone," he promised and turned around, striding with power to his horse and drove his heel into the black stallion's side. The stallion lurched forward, breaking out into a fast gallop with Mammon on his back and his men riding proudly behind him.

The village of the Picts cheered and roared for the blood of the Romans and sung in hymn for the return of their men, and for the return of the Centurion whom had escaped from their grasp too many times. They desired Roman blood.

I

Quintus had slowly risen from his deep slumber, staring at the cold body of his beloved. He had stroked her hair, imagining its lost golden shine, the bright shimmer of her eyes when she had looked at him. He imagined the way she had welcomed his back, and all the stories she had taught him.

He had taught her how to fight one time. He laughed at the memory as he stroked her pale cheeks. It had ended in disaster. She was better suited to the gathering of plants and the preparation of the meals, and the tending of the forest glen. So he hunted; she fished; he fought whoever disturbed their peace; and she soothed him afterwards.

And now it was all gone in the blink of an eye. He let his hand wipe away his tears and he rose to his feet, putting the warm fur blanket over his dead love, sobbing mournfully. But he didn't stop sobbing while gathering everything he could into a bag. Food, clothing, medicinal herbs, his weapons, and his tools were all being packed into the bag.

He cried as he packed these things, slipping on his fur clothing for the long travel he'd be enduring. He could no longer endure being in this hut, being aware of her dead body being there with him, and the happy memory of her touch and her face.

He opened up a cabinet and stared at his Roman sword, the Golden Eagle encrusted onto the hilt, gleaming brilliant amber and bullion. He stared at it and quickly grabbed the hilt, swinging it artistically in his grasp, much like how he had a year ago before stowing it away forever.

Now here he was, holding it again.

He gulped and stuffed it under his belt, grabbing his bag and the carved eagle and the Roman horse. He caressed them both in his palms then placed them carefully in a small pouch, tying it firmly to his belt, right beside his blade. He patted it calmly then looked to the fur blanket. He slowly leaned down and caressed the silkiness. He smiled sadly and whispered, "Forgive me, Arianne…I'll always love you. May you rest well with the gods high up above."

He smothered the fires in the stove, watching the last flame flicker out as he left the small hut, leaving it behind him. He took his horse, the gentle chestnut colt and heaved himself onto the horse's back.

"Let's ride, my old friend," he whispered and nudged the horse's side. "Haa!"

The horse reared and cried out before darting off into the forest, riding over the terrain they had travelled on when with company. Now they stood alone.

Alone and hunted once more.

I

Wild: Well guys, there is my first chapter! I hope it is to your liking, as it is my first time writing this movie's story. It is also very complicated creating the plot to go along with the movie's previous.

Aiya: and if you didn't like it, flame her and beat her all ya like! I do it quite often, and will do it for you! If you have positive feedback, my hand will be stayed by your generous words.

Wild: Please Review, and tell me how I did with the story! Happy Easter everyone!