This is the very last chapter. The end of Season Unending. I will release the next part of The Season's Trilogy in a few days. It will be called 'Season's Ruler'. Hopefully, you guys are looking forward to it.
The thanks; to Badger2430, thanks for the favourite, story favourite, follower, and story follower. To DragonXander, thanks for the review. I'm sorry about cutting out the end of the battle but I'll add them in my other stories. I'm pleased you liked the fight, and here it is. The confrontation. Thank you all including Pm message guys. For this chapter I will answer the things for a week before leaving it in hibernation mode.
(By the way, the draconic is minimal because I didn't want to messing up sentences that need to stay fluid.) Let's try and get the most reviews ever for a chapter of this story.
Thanks all for sticking with it. I hope that this was the conclusion you wanted…
Jon Stormcloak entered Falkreath as a light drizzle began to fall. His horse was blown and his cloak hung limp from his shoulders. Kodaav rattled against it's sheath and his silvery mail's weight pulled him down, but he was there.
Jon wasn't certain where his father would be, but he suspected that there was only one place Ulfric Stormcloak would be found. As he made his way through the town, he looked around. It was a mess. Buildings were scorched ruins and there wasn't a living creature in sight. It must have been some dovah attack, he reflected.
He rode his key, horse, to the Jarl's longhouse, strands of his hair getting in his eyes. He brushed them away with his hand, and dismounted. Jon pushed the door open to find Ulfric Stormcloak, the former Jarl of Windhelm and his Father sitting in the Jarl's throne, his head bowed. At the sound of wind and rain he raised his head, registering Jon slowly.
'I thought you would come,' he said, his deep voice breaking the silence. Ulfric's voice sounded eerily like Jon's own now. 'You are the son I would have had, Jon.' He said quietly.
Jon wasn't ready to listen to this, so he stayed silent, making his way further into the longhouse. He found a chair and pulled it up, sitting quietly. The lack of sound was being oppressive though, Jon felt that he needed to break the silence, nahlot, somehow. 'Mother's in Sovngarde,' he said awkwardly.
Ulfric nodded. 'I am glad she made it, and proud you saw it,' he murmured.
'Thank you, Father.'
Ulfric's expression softened at the word. 'I would have loved you, Jon. I would have raised you as my son, my heir. As a Stormcloak.'
'Why did you never find me?'
Ulfric's mouth tightened. 'I didn't know until a few months ago.'
'Then why not then?'
Ulfric's expression was pained. 'I... I had an enemy to fight.'
'So did I, yet I would have searched for you.'
'But you never did search for your father, did you?'
'I did, in a sense,' Jon replied, sharper than he had intended.
The elder Stormcloak laughed a bitter laugh, ignoring his son's anger. 'How alike we are, eh?' He fell back to his musing slowly, staring at his lap.
Jon noticed that his father was wearing silver mail, with plate covering his shoulders, upper torso and arms, identical to Jon's own. A sword hung at his side.
The younger Stormcloak noticed this. 'I thought you preferred an axe?'
'It... this was the sword that killed your mother.'
Jon nodded, pain threatening to reach up and pull him into oblivion as he registered the weapon. He struggled with his emotions, forcing them back down as Ulfric watched. He seemed to understand, yet he said no word. They sat like that for a while before the younger Stormcloak spoke again.
'I have to kill you.'
'Why?' Ulfric questioned, flaring up suddenly. 'My cause is just. I'm simply trying to help my people.'
'You are not helping them-'
'I am! I will!'
'How?' Jon said, his anger boiling up now, his voice harsh and cold. 'By gifting them with death, and uncertainty? You've created Evgir Unslaad, Ulfric! Season Unending! Never ending war, Father! That is your legacy. Is that what you wanted?'
'I fight for peace-'
'But you're only good enough for war! Don't you understand?' Tears were running down Jon's face, and pure anguish overwhelmed his expression.
Ulfric Stormcloak stood, his face furious and his fists clenched. Jon remained sitting, still pained, but unintimidated by his Father's anger.
'It is true though, isn't it?' Jon reasoned gently, his anger diminished.
Ulfric looked ready to protest but didn't, instead sitting wearily, nodding.
'All we Stormcloaks were ever good at was war. I told your mother such a thing….' No answer. 'When we met, everything changed.' Still Jon made no move to talk to his father, so wrapped up in his own pain was he, so Ulfric took another tack, trying to draw speech from his son.
'You have a son, and a wife, don't you?' The younger Stormcloak nodded and Ulfric continued. 'Do you love them?' Again, Jon nodded. 'Then cherish every moment with them, as I have with you.'
And with that, Ulfric Stormcloak stood and drew his steel.
Jon rose too and stepped back, drawing his own sword. The skyforge steel glowed lightly.
'You have my sword. It has been a long time since I saw that blade.' Ulfric circled Jon, who stood watching him pass. 'It is powerful,' he said quietly, before letting out a booming laugh. 'But I fear we both know who's going to win this.'
'That was a long time ago.' Jon said.
'It was,' he agreed. 'But not long enough, I fear.'
The younger Stormcloak knew he was right. But he wouldn't show it. 'Remember when I told you about your armour?' His father nodded. 'It won't protect you, not this time.'
'I do remember you being fairly critical of it.' He motioned at his body. 'You said "I armoured myself in a god-like reputation".'
Jon nodded. He found it strange that Ulfric still remembered that.
Ulfric gave Jon a wry smile. 'I finally see you, as my son... I never imagined it this way.'
'You lived by the sword. It seems fitting that you die by it.'
'I seem to recall that you lived the same way.' Ulfric commented. 'How alike we are, still.'
'I'm not like you.'
Ulfric raised an eyebrow. 'Are we not? Think again, Jon Stormcloak. Your temper, that's mine I'm afraid. Your very body, it is slender compared to mine and your hair is black, from your mother, but everything else. I can't believe I never saw it before.'
'You never saw beyond yourself,' Jon said bitterly.
Ulfric looked hurt. 'I helped you-'
'But you never really cared for us!'
'I didn't know-'
'I thought Mother told you.'
His father stopped moving, looking deeply wounded and he sank back. 'Her name was Alea. No surname, she wasn't-'
'Special? Another prize?' Jon shot at him.
Anger coloured Ulfric's features. He made a threatening gesture. 'That is too far! I have made my mistakes, but I will not hear anything against my devotion for her!'
Silence returned as the tension evaporated. Jon looked up. 'You loved her?' he asked, not daring to really believe it.
Jon felt sick. He had misjudged Ulfric completely, but he couldn't go back now. It was too late for Skyrim.
'Are you ready to die?' he said instead.
His father readied himself. 'I think I am.'
'But will you go quietly instead?'
'A Stormcloak never surrenders, Jon. Remember that.'
Ulfric stepped forward and swung his blade down. Jon blocked and slammed his hilt into his Father's stomach, before swinging up the blade to cut open Ulfric's face. The elder dodged back, winded, and looked on Jon with new eyes. It would be a duel to the death, with no rules.
Ulfric ran forward and dodged under Jon's swing, aiming his own blade at his son's leg, but Jon lifted it quickly and backhanded his blade. Ulfric deflected it off his gauntlet.
Jon thrust forward, and Ulfric trapped the blade, then delivered a devastating headbutt to his son's face, followed by a hard kick. Jon fell, and he spat out blood, ignoring the pain as he rolled away from Ulfric's downward strikes. Jon got up quickly, swinging his blade wildly to keep his father off of him. The elder waited a second before launching a new attack, each blow hard and precise.
Jon parried but he quickly fell back to the doorway. Ulfric swung at his head and he ducked. The blade embedded itself in the frame, but before Jon could act Ulfric let go of his blade, swinging his right hand in a punch at Jon's face, which the younger Stormcloak ducked, before catching him with his left, which split Jon's cheek. He grabbed his dazed son, blood running down his face, and threw him through the door, breaking it.
Jon fell in the mud outside the longhouse, with the rain falling heavily now. Kodaav fell from his hand and he groaned as the pain of the impact took him, touching his cheek gingerly. He struggled up, to see Ulfric approaching, with his sword grasped tightly in his hand. The elder hesitated briefly before he swung his sword down and in a purely instinctual move, Jon blocked it with his muddy bracer, which it bit into deeply, and then he locked it there by slamming down his other arm over it. Ulfric briefly struggled but before he could overcome his natural response Jon kicked him in the leg, making him gasp, before swinging a devastatingly wild punch into Ulfric's jaw. Blood and a tooth fell onto the younger Stormcloak, who then twisted Ulfric's blade from his grip and swung it at him. The hilt caught his face, cutting a deep gash along his chin and Ulfric fell to the ground, spiting out dark blood, mixing it with the muddy ground.
Jon struggled to his feet, his limbs aching, but fuelled on by adrenaline. Ulfric seized Kodaav and stood, his face murderous and bloody, but still he hesitated, waiting for Jon to get up. The younger Stormcloak didn't register this and stood his ground, scared to face up against his own blade.
The elder swung at Jon's arm and he sidestepped before ducking under the next swing, stepping round to his Father's other side. He deflected the next thrust off his bracers, but Ulfric drew it back quickly and the blade ripped through his mail, cutting his upper arm heavily. Jon growled in pain and tried to punch his Father with his good arm, but he blocked it and tried to stab his son again. This time, Jon caught the weapon in-between his arm and chest and pulled it away. Ulfric let it go readily but then launched into a brutal unarmed attack on Jon.
The younger Stormcloak gasped as Ulfric's heavy mail gloves winded him and shouted out as his uppercut dislocated his jaw. Jon staggered back and attempted to grab Ulfric, but the former Jarl broke the grip expertly and threw Jon to the ground.
Ignoring his wounds, Jon rolled to grab Kodaav as Ulfric retrieved his own sword. He managed to get to his knees before his father was on him, raining down blows on his head. Sweat poured into his eyes. Jon knew he was going to have to break out or die. It was that simple. The prospect of death didn't scare him, though. But he couldn't die now. Jon had made a promise to Ysold.
With a cry of fury he lifted his blade, turned it, locking Ulfric's sword, and then used the locked hilts to stab his father's blade into the ground, where he lifted his own and slammed it down, breaking Ulfric's sword in half. Without hesitation Jon smashed his blade through Ulfric's rib cage and his father fell to the floor, coughing up blood. Shock enveloped his whole face, but as he looked up at Jon he smiled, his teeth red.
Jon's face was strained, but tears were beginning to roll down his cheeks as he finally comprehended what he had done.
'Jon.' His son looked down at him, before slumping next to his dying father, exhausted. 'You have to make me a promise.'
'Anything, Father,' Jon said, all grudges gone. All his hate had been wiped out; this battle had been for Skyrim, not himself anymore. Jon tightened his jaw, resisting the violent, nerve bending pain that rammed through it as he spoke. The sadness and guilt of the outcome was threatening to take him over.
'Promise me you will never blame yourself for what has happened here.'
'Enough!' Ulfric started to cough great hacking coughs, blood spilling from his mouth. Each breath was low and rasping. 'Promise you will see our line survive.'
Jon nodded, feeling like a boy. 'I swear, Father.'
Ulfric Stormcloak nodded, before falling back in the mud, his face sweaty and pale. 'It hurts so much.'
'I'm here, Father.'
Fondness turned Ulfric's features and he smiled a true smile, reserved for Alea. 'Yes, you are.' And then he died, leaving Jon alone in the bloody, slushy mud.
He let out a great cry of grief, his body shaking with his sobs. He cursed Paarthurnax, he cursed Skyrim, and he cursed fate, but none of them gave him any satisfaction. It was a long time before he managed to raise himself, but when he did he stumbled back into the longhouse, his wounds burning. Picking up a spade he went back outside to the nearby graveyard and started digging, his pain fuelling his flagging strength. It was midday before the muddy hole was ready, and with as much reverence as he could, Jon Stormcloak buried his father in the ground of Falkreath, among the other bodies of the dead heroes.
As he surveyed the ground, running through all the best memories he had of his Father, he noticed the grave next to it. It was his mother's. Drawing his sharp skyforge steel dagger he fell to his knees and starting scratching on the gravestone, writing what he wanted to see as tears mixed with the rain in a sour mixture of pain.
Here lies Alea Stormcloak, and Ulfric Stormcloak, High King of Skyrim, and father of the Dragonborn. Jon lay the broken remains of his Father's weapon by the grave and stood, breathing deeply, as the rain flickered to a halt. The sun burst through the clouds and Jon Stormcloak smiled, his pain starting ebb away. It would be a slow process, but it would happen, eventually. And that, was good.