The Blood Warrior Rebellion, Chapter 28

The cottage looked like a different place. Besides the change in size, there were a couple of new buildings. Orlando and Kasmira entered the one on the right. It appeared to be a crypt. A few bodies of people that they did not recognize lined the wall. In the center laid Svetlana. The coffin was surrounded by candles that Ivan was now lighting at the newly fallen night. Kasmira just couldn’t believe that Svetlana was dead. “Svetlana!”

Ivan just realized that they were in there. He glumly told them, “She died this morning while we evacuated the I.W.T.S.”

“I’m so sorry for your loss,” Orlanod told him. Tears welled up in Kasmira’s eyes, so Orlando hugged her. Orlando assured him, “AT least she died like a hero.”

“Yes,” Ivan said without taking his eyes off of his fallen wife. “And she will not have died in vain. We will do her proud in battle. It’s going to be tomorrow, isn’t it?” Kamsira nodded. “Good. It’s better to do it now while my anger at these bastards is still raw.” In an afterthought, he asked them, “You got married then?”

Orlando replied, “Yes we did.”

Ivan told them, “Congratulations.”

“Thank you,” Kasmira said. Ivan said nothing else and simply stared at Svetlana. Orlando and Kasmira thought it was best to leave him be.

They walked into the building on the left to see it was a makeshift hospital. There were about ten dozen beds with privacy curtains around them. Holly was running around coordinating it all. She almost ran right into Orlando and Kasmira. When she realized they were there, she burst into a smile and hugged them both. “I’m so glad you’re both okay! I thought something horrible had happened to you-like getting captured and tortured!”

Orlando responded, “Well, we were, but we got out.”

Holly examined his face. “Your wounds need to be treated.”

Orlando refused. “Save your medicine for my people.”

Kasmira asked, “Did anyone we know get hurt?”

Holly informed them, “We don’t know what happened to Rosably, but someone heard him say something about gathering more troops, which I fully believe. I assume wherever he’s gathering his men that he is safe. Oh, Amberline lost a lot of blood, but she is okay now. Noah said she should be waking up soon.”

They went over to the last bed on the left. They saw her leg being bandaged, and at that moment, Amberline groggily opened her eyes. She could feel that something was wrong with her legs. She groaned, “My legs! I can’t move them! Wait, that one has feeling. This means I can’t fight for Velorica anymore, doesn’t it? I’m so useless!”

“Don’t say that.” Amberline looked up and was surprised to see the apothecary, Noah, working on her leg. “Your wounds are cursed, so it may not ever heal. Meanwhile, you know you don’t need to fight to be useful. You were training to be backup since what you really wanted to do was sew. Instead of sewing cloth, you can help me sew wounds. We have a few medics waiting on the sidelines to treat soldiers and get them back onto the battlefield as quickly as possible. Will you help me treat them here?”

Amberline grinned with a slight blush. “I would love to.” He grinned as well. He finished wrapping her leg and gave it a pat. “Can I walk?”

“With a crutch,” he replied. “I have to go get someone. Please excuse me.”

He left the bed, and Amberline saw the other two standing there. They all smiled and went over to hug her. She gave Orlando and Kasmira a peculiar look. “Something is different about you two. You guys seem brighter somehow…Oh my god, did you get married?” They proudly nodded. “Oh, congratulations! I wish I could’ve been there!”

Kasmira commented, “I’m glad you weren’t because we got captured after the ceremony.”

Amberline said sarcastically, “Yeah, instead I was here bleeding and unconscious-that’s much better.”

They laughed. Noah popped his head through her privacy curtain. “I told her I would come get her as soon as you woke up.”

Before they could ask who he was talking about, a young girl who looked beautiful but incredibly tough with pale skin, dark auburn hair, and dark lips walked in. Amberline gushed, “Lydia!”

“Amberline!” Lydia ran to her. “I was so worried about you!”

“You were worried for me?” Amberline responded, “You were in an I.W.T.S!”

Lydia shrugged. “It could’ve been worse. We mostly just made armor and weapons for the Blood Warriors. it was almost like they were preparing for war.”

“There are,” Kasmira said, “Tomorrow, King Davidson is sending out an army to look for us. I think he knows what we’re prepared to do.”

Orlando noted, “We still haven’t told Mac.”

“I want to go too,” Amberline stated. “Can you help me up, Lydia?”

“Of course,” she obliged. “Mac wants to see if you’re okay too.”

Orlando, Kasmira, Lydia, and Amberline went inside the original cottage, which was jam packed with people. They found Mac talking to Anthony on one side of the room. Mac and Anthony saw them coming and looked relieved. They hugged Amberline and the couple, and Lydia helped Amberline into a chair. Mac commented, “I knew Noah could mend you! What happened to you newlyweds?”

Orlando told him, “We were captured right after the ceremony. Kasmira managed to break me out of the dungeons. With her father’s help, actually.”

“Yes,” Kasmira said sadly, “And he died trying to protect me.” Before anyone could offer words of sympathy, Kasmira let out, “My dad had the scepter. It’s in King Davidson’s hands now!”

Mac put a hand to his forehead for support. “I really hoped we would get to it before him. Did he say anything about the evacuation?”

“Yes,” Orlando explained, “He has ordered his troops to come for us. Mac, we have got to prepare for battle.”

Mac steeled himself up. “I had a feeling it would be soon. With the vast size of our cottage now, we would not have gone unnoticed. We will move everyone before daybreak. I am going to tell Holly the plan and when I come back, we will start arming ourselves.” He promptly left.

Amberline said to Lydia, “I should start training with Noah, get as much knowledge as I can before tomorrow.”

Lydia told her, “I will help you get there, but I’m going to do battle. I had to test the weapons before I gave them up, so I know I can handle the sword better than anyone.”

Anthony said mischievously, “Yeah, I bet you can!”

Lydia rolled her eyes but seemed amused. “My rescuer! If you hadn’t saved my life, I would slap you in the face!”

As she helped Amberline up, Anthony reminded Amberline, “Remember your promise!”

Amberline looked at him incredulously. “You were serious about that deal?”

“What deal?” Lydia inquired.

Amberline begrudgingly explained, “I told him that if he rescued you, he could marry you. But I thought that was so unlikely that was, so I gave my consent!”

Lydia put a hand on her hip and looked at Anthony. “Was I going to get a say in the matter?”

“Of course!” Anthony replied immediately. “What is your say on the matter?”

Lydia thought for a second and replied, “Tell you what, if both of us survive this battle, ask me again.”

Anthony asked seriously, “Are you saying that because it seems so unlikely or are you hoping that it will happen?”

“Both.” Lydia grinned. Anthony smiled too. Lydia turned to leave, but she looked back at him and asked, “Are you looking at my backside?”

Hastily looking up, Anthony answered, “Oh no, never!” Lydia chuckled and left with Amberline. Anthony looked very happy considering the circumstances.

Mac came back. The tone of the room changed. They knew it was time….


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