Fiction

The Merchant – A Short Story based on TES V: Skyrim

I remember my first trip to a town in Skyrim, the long journey through Morrowind had taken its toll on my boots after the tiresome journeys up and down the many mountains that were placed between my homeland and the vast arctic wasteland of Skyrim. The first town I reached after entering the region was Windhelm, known in our history books as one of the longest standing Holds in all of Tamriel. I’d heard many rumours of the civil war that had plagued this land but only really saw the full extent of things as I saw the Stormcloak leader Ulfric being escorted into his palace, the rebel guards were everywhere and I could spot the distaste of certain customers who browsed my extensive range of wares.

I didn’t get much business in Windhelm and as I had a lot of magical robes stored up, I decided to take a trip to the popular magical town of Winterhold, home of the famous college where many apprentice wizards go to train and study in whichever department of the magical arts that they see fit. It only took roughly a day to walk from Windhelm to Winterhold but as I approached the city, I spotted an ambush up ahead. I dove into a nearby bush and kept deadly still, hoping not to alert the attackers which I spotted. They were clearly bandits, they had set up a little trap for any wandering adventurer but unluckily for them, I was not just any adventurer. With my father’s bow drawn, I took a deep breath and took out one of the bandits. In a blind panic, the others fled from their camp and ran off into the Nordic wilderness which laid in wait.

I scavenged what I could from the bandit camp: a couple of arrows, some mead and a few spell tomes were the best things I found, and that’s saying something. I proceeded to enter the city and immediately headed to the inn, where I was surprised to see a large commotion surrounding the fireplace in the center of the room. “Well what are we supposed to do”, one of the redguards exclaimed, “Karlem has disappeared, Bloated-Man’s Hollow is no place for such an inexperienced adventurer”. I was about to raise my voice but then remembered that the adventurer in me was long-gone now and that it would be purely trivial for me to get involved. I skulked about in the shadowy parts of the inn, going from table to table selling goods. I made roughly 200 gold from that one inn, my biggest haul in months. It was getting late and I was not too eager to journey on through the night so I rented a room for the evening and slept through the night.

I woke up early and fully rested with the full intention of heading onto Dawnstar after visiting the College of Winterhold. I left the inn, paying for my stay (a mere 10 gold) and walked up the daunting steps towards the College. What happened next was too much for any man to explain… a sight simply too evil and too powerful to be remembered…

 

~Fin (Part 1?)~

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The Aftermath – Chapter Two

I walked outside of my door, gun in hand and watched as doors all around the town opened. The air was cold and I walked over to the body of the man, lying dead on the floor. I rolled the body over and unhooked the satchel from his shoulder and walked over to the shop. People glanced at me, with eyes that made me feel guilty for what I’ve done. I walked into the shop and dropped the satchel on the counter. The shopkeeper stared at me and then nodded. I walked out and headed back  home. The gun was now in my belt and I was starting to regret my decision. I went back inside my house, finished off cooking my dinner for the evening, ate it and went to bed. I was awoken earlier than usual, by knocking on my front door. I got out of bed, put some slippers on my feet and proceeded to open the door.

As I unlocked the door and opened it, I was greeted by what must’ve been ten or twenty people. One man stepped forward, who I recognised as one of the old café owners, and said “We… uhh… we don’t think that you should stay here any more “. Shocked, I replied, “What? Why?”. “The way you killed that man… we don’t want any more trouble…”. “I killed that man to save all of your lives! This is what I get?”. “Well we just thought that-“. I was getting angry now, “Thought that what?”. “We really don’t want any more trouble.” By now, I knew I wasn’t wanted so I closed my door and started packing. It was going to be difficult leaving the safety of the town and I wasn’t sure what to expect out in the wilderness.

After packing for a couple of hours, I finally left my house for the final time. Gun in pocket and suitcase in hand. I can’t say that I was too happy about leaving this safety but I could not dwell too long on my mistakes. I left the town and turned my head to see if anyone was there but everyone was locked in the safety of their houses.

A few hours passed and I was still walking in the desolate wasteland of England. I stopped off at a few deserted places to look for useful supplies but with no avail. I was having no luck, my arms were feeling weak and so were my legs. I found a bench in a deserted Norwich and sat down. I opened my backpack and took out some water. Just as I was drinking it I heard a noise from down the road. I panicked and found the nearest alley to hide down, leaving my backpack on the bench. A car pulled up next to the bench, what looked like a Volvo. A man opened the car door, got out and slammed the door behind him. He walked over to the bench and picked up my bottle of water. I stared on and knew that I was in for a long wait…

 

 

To Be Continued…

 

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CynicalSurvivor.

 

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The Aftermath – Chapter One

It has been seven years since the world ended. It was a cold, winters morning and people were just doing what they were used to doing everyday. Men were going to work and so were women, actually. Children were getting ready for school but somewhere in the US, the head of military defense was planning something else. Ongoing peace contracts between the US and North Korea were not going very well, in fact they were not going very well at all. One button. One flash. One Apocalypse. Children over the world were killed by the initial blast and radiation. Working Men and Women were extinguished by either the bomb itself or the radiation produced. Except for a few. To be precise, 100,000 people… or so the radio said.

In turn, the radio was the only form of media left. No television, no internet and no newspapers. It was just like World War 2. I was lucky that I was in an area where so many of us survived… well thirty. We had a small community, with farmers, entertainers, doctors and anything else that we needed. We set up a ration system and the old shop owner kept his shop open for business. Life was good and that brings us to now. Seven years after. Things are worse now, to begin with four of our group have died. Two disappeared whilst hunting, one fell serious ill and the other was killed by their husband! Secondly, it’s Winter and we can’t grow many crops and finally the radio says that bandits have been raiding camps all over England.

Well, that’s it for the moment, I kind of wished that I had a more ‘interesting’ and ‘happy’ story to tell but I simply didn’t. Maybe something interesting would happen the next day. How right I was. I woke up at seven AM and got ready to go down to the shop and spend my ration. As I was only twenty-seven and did not use my ration as wisely as I could have. Returning from my trip to the shop, I brought with me some bacon, some bread, some potatoes and some ham. That would last me the day and after a whole day of doing practically nothing, I started to cook my dinner. I would have ham and mashed potato, not exactly ‘fine dining’. Just as I started to mash the potatoes, I heard a loud noise from the street. I ran to my window and pulled back the curtain, just enough for me to look through. Standing in the middle of the street with what looked like a high caliber rifle in his right hand, was a man. Wearing a straw hat and ragged clothes. “Alright. Who wants to give up their food and money?”, said the stranger. I noticed old Mr Jones step out of his house, limping, holding his walking stick. “I think you better calm do-“. Poor Mr Jones. He had been through all of this, at the age of ninety too!

The reaction was fast. The stranger raised his rifle, looked down the sight and shot Mr Jones square between his eyes. At that very second, many doors locked and many windows shut but I decided to carry on watching. The man walked up to Mr Jones’ house, disappeared inside for a few minutes and returned outside with a satchel crammed full of items. My father always used to tell me that “Desperate times call for desperate measures” so I headed to my bedroom and reached underneath my bed. I dragged out a small case and unlocked it with a small key that I kept on my bedside table. I opened the case and there it was. My father’s revolver. I picked it up and ran the smooth metal through my hands. It was loaded, luckily, as I had no idea where any of my ammo was. I returned to the window and slowly opened it, trying to make as little noise as possible. I now had the man clear in my sight and I cocked the pistol, ready to fire. Just as the stranger turned around, I pulled the trigger.

 

TO BE CONTINUED.

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As the Sun Sets – A Short Story

When I was younger, my family used to always tell me that as the sun sets, bad things happen on the streets. People at school used to claim that close friends and family had been murdered or kidnapped. I never really believed any of it… but I was too scared to test the theory. I thought it was just a ploy for parents to control their children at bedtime and that it was all fake.

One Thursday afternoon, I had arrived home from a neighboring town where one of my friends had lived, I was thirteen at the time, and I was tired. We had been out looking in the Desert… that was the only thing that would entertain us. My legs ached and I had a bit of a headache but I was almost home and I wasn’t half looking forward to the comfort of my own house. I drew my attention to the town clock, which showed that it was half past 5. I needed to get home in time for dinner. As I was walking through our town, I noticed that a door was open. Not just any door… a door that hadn’t been open for ten years.  My mind was telling me that I needed to get home but my instinct told me that something was not right and I had to investigate. As I stepped nearer to the house, I could have sworn that I saw something move inside. I drew closer and was now mere meters away from the darkness of the house.

I peered inside, looking for a lamp of some sort, to light my way. Nothing. It was so dark that there could have been millions of deadly animals in there and I would be none the wiser. My next move… was stupid. A move that could have potentially cost me my life. I stepped inside and heard a loud crash from the corner of the room. I froze. The door slammed behind me and before I knew it… I was out cold.

When I woke up, I was on the floor by the very door I had come through. I didn’t think to investigate further so I just opened the door and left, closing the door behind me. It was dark now. My heart was beating quickly and I was terrified. What if the stories were true… and I was to be murdered out here. I picked up the pace and looked back to make sure that I wasn’t being followed. I was not being followed but what I saw filled me with more terror than I could have ever imagined… the door that I had closed behind me, was open. I started running as fast as I could and before long I could hear footsteps behind me. Glancing behind me I could see nothing, except footprints in the sandy floor. I had never run that fast in my entire life and I was now several hundred meters away from my own home.

Everytime I glanced behind me, nothing was there but I knew that I was being chased. I was almost home now and as I approached the house, I looked behind me one more time to make sure that nothing was there. I ran up the stairs to my house and clattered into the house, closing the door behind me. I settled down and vowed to myself that I would never, ever go outside at night again. To this day, I still don’t know whether I was being chased or if it was just my mind playing tricks on me… and I guess I will never know. However, there was one thing that I remembered just before I was knocked out cold… a face, with a scar down the side of it, a big wide grin and sharp, open eyes staring right at me.

 

Sweet Dreams Guys!

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CynicalSurvivor