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A Mercenary's Life

Started by Lord Burl
Post #61726

Likes Given: 55
Likes Received: 58
Faction & Race:
Daggerfall Covenant
This is my first story attempt, hope some of you folks like it.

Opgrum trudged along the trail worn into the mountain pass by countless carts, over an even more countless length of years. This was his first job since meeting up with Gra'Muh in Bravil a few weeks ago. Gra'Muh was a childhood friend, and after their chance encounter, Opgrum decided to join Gra'Muh as a mercenary for hire, in order to see the world and earn some good coin along the way.

Gra'Muh's employer was a wealthy merchant named Claxis, from Cyrodil, and he was traveling to Skyrim to oversee the shipment of some valuable goods back to the Emperial City. There were 3 others accompanying the merchant besides the two Orcs. There were two male Redguards and a female Breton. The two Redguards both had bows slung over their backs, and were clearly comfortable as scouts and woodsmen as they often took down game to supplement the caravan's food supply. The Breton was a mage by the looks of her, with a long silken robe of simple design, and a single iron dagger at her waist. She rode in the cart with the merchant, occupying her time by either studying the local flora, which she often had the cart stop so she could collect a sample, or by reading one of her many tomes.

Opgrum grew drowsy as the day wore on and a warm breeze came over the evening air, filled with the scent of junipers and various wild herbs. He was tired of being left at the rear guard position alone, as there was no one for him to talk to during the long treks between breaking camp in the morning, and making camp in the evening. Truth be told, he longed to speak with Gra'Muh, for his old friend was the only friend he had out here. The mage had not spoken to him at all, and the merchant had only spoken to him in order to come to an agreement on payment for his services. The two Redguards had seemed amicable, but Opgrum had yet to trust them well enough for conversation.

Finally, Claxis gave the signal to make camp, and Opgrum was happy to oblige. He pitched Claxis' tent first, then the tent for the Breton. Opgrum and the other three guards slept out in the open in bedrolls, so once the two tents were up, he was free to assist building the campfire and cooking the evening meal.

One of the Redguards was skinning a pair of rabbits when he suddenly looked over at Opgrum and spoke. "You know, my brother and I don't bite. Its okay to get to know us. Besides, there may soon come a time when we must risk our lives together. My name is Sorink, and my little brother's name is Torlin."

Opgrum hesitated, then replied "My name is Opgrum gro-Yul."

Sorink looked puzzled at the Orcs short and uninviting answer, but pressed on nonetheless. "So, your name is Opgrum. Where do you hale from my friend."

"I come from no where in particular. My home is no more, so I make my home wherever I find a comfortable bed."

"A travelling man I see. So, where is your current comfortable bed located?"

"Your looking at it." Opgrum was beginning to think that this was a rather simple human. He had just told him he makes his way and has no real home.

"I did not think you were being quite so literal, I thought perhaps you had a room at an inn or somewhere you frequented to call a bed." Realizing that Opgrum was not going to be the chatty group mate he was hoping for, Sorink focused his attention on the meal he was preparing.

Opgrum pulled his Alchemy set out of his pack, then gathered a few ingredients from the nearby forest's edge. He then set about preparing a few useful potions, in case he got sick or was wounded in battle. He even made a simple poison, in case they ran into the kind of trouble that often finds traveling merchants and their caravans.

Once the evening meal was completed, Opgrum and Gra'Muh sat a little ways from the others and began chatting.

"It is dismal at the rear guard position, I can't speak to you while you are at the front of the caravan, and none of these humans seem like much company, even for their attempts at talking to me."

"You will find that they are not so bad in time my friend", Gra'Muh replied, but Opgrum did not find much solace in his friends words.

After a half hour of talking over their after-meal ale, the two Orcs turned in for the night, as the two Redguards would take the first watch. Opgrum felt as if he had barely been asleep when he felt a hand on his shoulder to rouse him.

"Is it time al....", but Opgrum was cut off by Gra'Muh's hand as he placed it over his mouth. Opgrum grew angry, but Gra'Muh was someone he trusted, so he kept his mouth shut, for now.

Gra'Muh motioned towards Claxis' tent, but Opgrum could not see anything in the dark. Then it struck him. Why had the two on watch allowed the campfire to die down? It suddenly dawned on him that perhaps the fire had been put out, as he could not even see a single coal burning in the pitch black of night. The clouds even obscured what light there should have been from the moon and stars.

Opgrum rose as quickly, and quietly as he could, grabbing his axe and following Gra'Muh's lead.
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Post #63639

Likes Given: 25
Likes Received: 22
Faction & Race:
Ebonheart Pact (Nord)
Nicely done, aside from a couple minor spelling errors. Overall I liked it. I enjoyed how the ending left you in suspense, hopefully leading up to more. Good job man.

Tyrvan Southpaw - a Nordic Skaal hunter
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