An: I don't own Ranger's apprentice

The Changeling

Chapter 1

Darkness falls

High, sitting on a hill top, sat a castle but no just any castle, it was the castle of Shotaha the evil enchantress. The forest that sounds the castle had drowned many years ago in Shotaha's rage, it creaked and ground and was said to be protected, by demons.

Down this hillside the witch looked, from this height revealed a lot about what went on in the country side bellow. The alternating patches of rocky bottom and green weed around deep cave like holes in which things that she had created over the years could be hidden. Her eyes locked on something. There was movement, a shadow of something, something that she had hated for a long time, she was sure that he was here.

A ball of lighted flame illuminated the area where she had last seen him, in the intense blue and yellow light Shotaha expanded her field of vision, only to see him vanish in the dead forest bellow.

Shotaha called the light back as her slave came into the room. She saw him staring but most people did, she was attractive, that took most people's breath away. She wore a wispy dress with varieties of blues across its crystal like surface, its folds and loose paints floating in the breeze. Her full, thick hair was a wavy auburn, her smooth skin was flawless.

"Mistress, the skandians have just come back with their catch and there are many that will suit that purpose"said the slave, who kind of looked like a troll.

Almond eyes shone at him.

"Good, the last batch were all killed by him and the ones I have now will not be a enough for this, he is too strong" Shotaha said moving to the wooden table on the right side of the casters room.

This table held many things, among them wizard dust, it was made from the bones of the wizards she had killed. It shimmered like ice crystal. A curved blade was her favorite weapon it was with them two things she cast her magic with and it was with these two things and a spell from her special book that helped her cast the magic that created her army.

"Mistress it is also said that there are two archers with them, a middle aged man and a very young boy" said the slave, watching mistress's face change at this piece of information.

"Archers, could be good for my plans but only the boy, the spell works best with the young ones and I have no interest in the older man, but also make sure that you get as many as you can I'm going to need the numbers"she said, her voice was now soft and sweet as she knew he like it.

Shotaha watched as her slave smiled and bowed and left her alone in her room. She would have gone herself but her transformations were known and her slave would do any thing for her, all she had to do was turn on the charm.

Latter, she knew he would be back with children, ones that would help her kill that man and take his power as her own.

Soon her slave was back, he came to her and told her that he had got twelve boys all under the eighteen year mark, and that he had got the archer boy as well. The older archer had obviously been the boy's father because he had tried to come for the boy before he was locked away again in the sale yard.

Time to make her army, she thought, as she went down to the spell room. In this room stood a large wooden table that held heavy iron chains. Shotaha made sure she had all she needed for her spell to work.

As Shotaha mixed the ingredients for the potions, her slave now brought in the boys. They ranged in age and size from the oldest being around seventeen, tall, very strong with thick blonde hair and deep blue eyes, to the smallest who she had been told was the archer boy, maybe fifteen at the most, with deep brown eyes, but the difference with this boy was that in his eyes he held some fear but also a determination about something. She watched as they were soon chained to the wall, so escape was impossible.

"Carl bring the biggest, strip him naked ad chain him down to the table" Shotaha told Carl her slave, as she got ready for the next part.

As he started to do as Shotaha asked, the boy made a break for it, only to be stopped by Carl. Carl slammed him into the wall knocking his breath out of him and before he got it back, his clothes were removed and he was chained to the table.

Shotaha took a small cup of dark gold liquid and poured it down his throat, which had his body twisting and he started to scream at the top of his lungs. Shotaha started to say the spells ancient words and the boy's body and screaming increased. Lastly she dipped her curved blade into the wizard dust and drove it deep into the boy's heart.

As she took the blade from the boy, his breathing, body twisting and screaming, that had stopped while the blade was in his heart, started again now it was out, but now something else was happening, his skin looked like it was growing animal fur.

"Take him to the cages and then come back here for the next one" Shotaha said

As Shotaha watched her slave take the changeling out of the room. She noticed the boys chained to the wall, all but one were screaming or crying or both, all except the archer, he was still watching her, staring at her with those deep brown eyes.

Carl came in and moved to the next oldest boy but the witch stopped him. She knew now who had to be turned next and it was not the boy Carl was going to unchain next.

"Carl... not that one" she said and when he looked at her confused by what she had just said, she continued "the archer boy is next".

An:How is that? I know it as been asked for months(looking at you flaminglake) so I hope you like it and I'll try to bring out the next one soon.