BladedDingo - March 6, 2019
Tyr stood at the mouth of a giant cave and stared out into the mountain range. The cave entrance was cleverly concealed, even with the massive opening and the equally large, thick stone doors, anyone who dared to climb the mountains would never see the entrance unless they knew what they were looking for.
It’d taken Tyr’s scouts nearly a month to locate the proper path, and another month of spying on the dwarves to get the information Tyr needed for his siege of the dwarven king’s stronghold. it was a long, and difficult siege, he’d almost given up, but the previous night Tyr prayed.
The gods had never steered Tyr wrong before, and he’d used their wisdom to unite the human tribes into a well-oiled fighting machine. Everyone in his new empire knew the power of the gods. Even the elves had been smart enough to bend the knee to him.
Tyr didn’t enslave the elves, he welcomed them into the empire once they saw his might. Their gods were not stricken from the books and banned, their gods were also welcomed to walk among the Ru-Nal. All creatures, including the lesser gods were children of Nal.
But the dwarves refused to see the truth of their gods. They feared Tyr and his armies, they feared the empire and its power. But they didn’t have to. They could have capitulated, they could have thrown themselves at the mercy of Nal and Tyr would have pardoned them and given their stubborn gods a place among the true gods.
But they refused. Tyr turned to look at the rubble that once was their mighty gate. They thought their fortress impenetrable, and for a time, it was.
But on the final night of the siege, Tyr prayed for forgiveness, for hope, for strength. And Nal answered.
That morning, Tyr rode up to the gates as he had each morning for the last fortnight and asked for the dwarves surrender and offered terms. They refused, again.
But this time it was different, there was an energy among the troops and the dwarves knew it. Their smug grins faded as a line of soldiers readied themselves behind Tyr. the Dwarf captain immediately left the battlements and began to issue orders to his defenders.
Tyr knelt in front of the massive stone gate, laid the head of his warhammer on the ground, touching his forehead to the upright handle and spoke a prayer. A faint glow of yellow light shimmered over the warhammer and Tyr stood and hefted the hammer.
By the time the hammer struck the stone gate, it’s light was a brilliant white and blinded the defenders looking down in awe. When their eyes recovered, the gate that once protected this hidden enclave was shattered as if it were glass, and the soldiers began to pour through the breach, Tyr leading the way.
The fighting was fierce, but brief. The dwarves clearly thought that Tyr could not break through, and for the last month, there was no evidence to the contrary. King Elisk Von Bronze even dared to feast atop the battlements a few times a week, so sure of his safety.
The halls of the dwarven city were quiet, the occasional clamor of swords and shields off in the distance bounced down the corridors as Tyr’s troops cleared out the last of the garrison and stubborn hold outs. The ground was littered with bodies, dwarven, human and elg alike, and he muttered a prayer under his breath as he passed.
When he arrived at the keep, the massive gates to the courtyard were wide open. Tyr’s assault was so swift, and the king’s ignorance so blinding, that he didn’t consider the garrison to be as vital as he should have. His gods had failed him, while Tyrs had bolstered him.
The courtyard was mostly empty, but the great hall was buzzing with activity, noble dwarf women lined the back wall, disarmed guards shackled to each other, and in front of the granite throne atop the impressive dais, sat the King himself, unharmed and defiant as ever.
“King Elisk, your castle is mine, your armies defeated. If you swear fealty to me, I will be fair, and your people treated well.” He gestured around him to the elves and humans who now worked as one for the glory of Nal. “You will be welcomed into the Empire and your people will know only good health and long lives. But, if you decline…”
He couldn’t finish before the defeated king rose and spat at Tyr, a glob of spit splattered on Tyr’s breastplate as the guards drew their weapons and flanked the King. Tyr raised his hand and dismissed the guards.
“We will never submit to your rule. We’ve held this mountain for generations, and we’ll continue to hold this mountain. You can do what you wish, but the gods will protect us, they will defend our lands, and they will smite you down for your foolishness”, the king’s face flushed, and more spittle flew from his mouth as he spoke.
“Nal is a welcoming lord, he will usher your gods into his realm, he will guide them, and help them. Your gods have not failed you, they have simply shown you a new path.” Tyr said.
Elisk chortled and smirked. “Our gods would never unite with the… fiends you and your ilk worship.”
A sadness crossed over Tyrs face, “You refuse this offer?” He asked.
“Yes, I refuse. Never will a dwarf bow before a human. I will dine with Abbathor in the afterlife before I bow to the likes you!” the king yelled, jabbing his meaty finger at Tyr.
Tyr bent a little, so that he was eye to eye with the king, then said, “When you have finished your dinner, you may tell your lord that his place at Nal’s side awaits him.”
Then he stood and brought his hammer down.
“Bring me the Prince.”