Soul Collector

By the Mighty Lu Bu

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A Falkreath Guard by the name of Orndon stood on top of a wooden tower near Falkreath. They had recently taken the encampment from a group of bandits who'd been harassing travelers along the road and now for the time being their job was to guard it, and keep the roads open. Orndon himself had only been in Falkreath for about two years. He'd emigrated from Windhelm, to get away from the politics, and the issues with the Dark Elves. He'd had enough of it and moved on.

Now he stood on top of a wooden structure under a frozen sky, waiting for an attack that surely would come. The bandits didn't want to give this place up. It had a perfect tactical advantage as you could station archers on the top to aim their arrows at unsuspecting travelers while a couple men would collect the toll from below. It was a perfect set up, and too good to be passed up. The bandits would want it back and Orndon feared that maybe they wouldn't have the strength to hold out against them.

Orndon felt the cold air press against his face under his helmet. He watches his breath exit his mouth as it would freeze in the air. It was at least a quiet night, not that he wouldn't prefer to be back in the barracks. Why he volunteered for this he didn't know. But here he was waiting for the sun, or those bandits, whichever came first, didn't seem to come soon enough.

Suddenly he felt a cold hand on the back of his neck; he turned around with his sword out, swinging at empty air. There was nothing there. Was he imagining things? Maybe he'd been out here too long. But if he told the other guards that he was seeing things then he might find himself outside of a job. He needed this job, so he couldn't do that. He turned around to face his original position, which was in the direction of Falkreath, but instead he found himself face to face with striking red eyes.

The Figure starred at him coldly as the darkness obscured the rest of his face for a moment, but as the light caught Orndon's eyes he began to be able to make out the rest of his face. His skin was dark and his features strong. His glare was one of a piercing hatred. Orndon shifted back a step at the sight of his face, "You… what are you doing here?"

The being approached, his sinister eyes bearing down on the now trembling guard. "You recognize me, don't ya…?"

Orndon trembled in fear, "But… you're dead!" Suddenly he felt an ebony dagger slip under his chin and force itself though his throat, causing the blood to poor out. With his last seconds upon him he felt a strange power come over him. While he had no love of magic, he'd become familiar with some of the spells and this one was a Soul Trap spell. He realized that the dagger was enchanted with it. He tried to cry out but the cloaked figure turned the blade, robbing him access of his vocal cords. His eyes turned cold as his life came to an end. His last thoughts, like any true Nord, were of home. His body fell to the ground, he was dead.

With that, the energy that had consumed his body pulled itself back towards the Elf. He held up a single Black Soul gem as he grinned with dark satisfaction. With cold words he spoke, "Orndorn, you are the first. I have 5 more Soul Gems for each of your friends. I am their day of reckoning."

"STOP!" shouted a guard as he had just come up the steps, to meet the gruesome image of his friend, bloody and dead.

The Dark Elf turned, as the guard charged at him. The Elf remained still as the enemy sword came at him, but then suddenly at the last moment; he turned pulling out an elven shortsword and jabbing it into the side of the guard's chest. He whispered into the dying guard's ear, "You didn't have the die tonight, I wasn't coming for you. You brought this on yourself."

The Dark Elf removed his blade from the guard, and cast him off the wooden structure, onto the ground below landing on his head finishing him off. Both guards were now dead. The Dark Elf put away his Black Soul Gem; his journey of vengeance was just beginning.

8

The Argonian known as Scaled Traveler had found herself in the middle of quite a lot of fun, so to speak, in her three weeks since entering Skyrim. She'd been beaten up, and nearly killed a dozen times, and at the same time, she'd dished out a lot of punishment herself. She was here to stay, and make as much of a profit as she could, while she was here. No racist Nord was going to run her off. She would leave when she was ready and willing.

She stood silently over in the corner. Steel armor covered her from head to toe, except her face. The cave midst landed on her dark green face as she stared on at her prey. Today she was on a job, hunting down a bounty for Jarl Balgruff. Proventus had told her about some bandits at Silent Moons Camp, and while Proventus had a tendency to be cheap with his payouts but it was still worth doing. The money was nice but it was the rush of combat and the thrill of battle that got her going. Any chance to experience that thrill was a chance worth taking. She'd worked her way through several bandits and now there was only a bandit chief, and a single mage that was guarding him. They weren't going to last long.

They knew she was near, but they couldn't find her, as she was hiding in a dark corner. The mage was doing her best to screen her boss, as the Argonian Warrior prepared her Orcish Bow, stringing up a single Steel Arrow. Scaled Traveler could almost admire the Breton mage for her efforts, but her life was about to end. Still, she would have preferred to put the arrow into the Orc, as he would be the far more dangerous fighter.

Scaled Traveler pulled out a second in a hope that she could nail both at the same time. She clenched on one of the arrows in her teeth, while she again strung the other. She focused in on the mage's head, pulling back on the bow, readying it for its deadly strike. The Argonian released the arrow,not taking time to watch it soar through the air, instead prepared her second arrow for the attack on the Orc. She looked up to take aim again as she observed the first arrow now buried in the nasal cavity of the now dead Breton. Not wanting to waste time the Argonian released her second arrow, however the Orc had turned just in time, avoiding a lethal shot instead he took the arrow through his shoulder. But being an Orc, something like that wasn't going to stop him.

Scaled Traveler didn't want to waste any time, as she pulled out an elven war axe. She surged forward at the Orc ducking a steel war hammer. She struck at him with her war axe, but the steel plate armor blunted her shot. Rolling out of the way of another swing of the Orc's hammer she took a swing at the Orc's side, staggering him just a bit. The Orc however, was quick to get his balance back, and charged at the Argonian. "FUS RO DAH!"

The Orc was thrown against a cave wall, giving Scaled Traveler the chance she needed to drive home the attack, and finish him off. She drove the War Axe into the side of his head, causing blood and brain matter to splatter onto the wall. Despite the severe head wound, the Orc got up to his feet once more. He tried to lift his War Hammer again, but then he fell over, dead. The Argonian breathed a sigh of relief, as she removed the axe. She just needed to go back to Whiterun and collect the bounty and then she could relax for the rest of the day.

She had a good deal with Proventus. Most people only get about one hundred septims for bounties from him, but she'd got on his good side, and had managed to negotiate a deal, for two hundred-fifty septims per bounty. Which was fine for her, the money was just a perk; the combat was what was worth living for. Though she did realize that by having that deal, she didn't have to go dragon hunting if she didn't want to, or fight on some battlefield in the war. It was nice to have options. Still, that didn't stop her from taking the chance to make some profits, as she grabbed the steel war hammer and a few other items. They'd fetch her some good money at War Maidens. Then she'd head to her home in Whiterun.

Scaled Traveler mused, "Another day… another septim."

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