Okay, I’ve had internet issues so I haven’t had a chance to update anything recently, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been writing. I got a little bored the other day and I’ve come up with a few more adventures for my incompetent barbarians. So today’s post is the first part of their latest adventure.
Borderlands: The Brazen Horde Part 1
‘Stop pacing. We need to project confidence, or we won’t get the job,’ Tobold glared at Hibalt, ‘Don’t look so nervous, it’ll be fine.’
‘Nervous, who’s nervous? I’m not nervous. Are you nervous?’ Hibalt tried to do as he was told and ‘project confidence’ in his demeanour, but failed miserably.
‘No, you fool, I’m bored silly.’ ‘Do you think we’ll have to wait much longer?’ ‘How should I know? Why don’t you stare at the clouds like you usually do, and shut up?’
‘Ha, I like that! There aren’t any clouds to stare at.’
The pair returned to slouching against the brass clad wall of the yurt. They’d been waiting in the ever diminishing queue since dawn and had finally reached the front. With nothing else to do they waited and watched the Brazen Horde (‘Now Recruiting! Don’t Miss YOUR Chance to join OUR Team!) stir in to life. Waiting with them under the broiling noon sun was a young man fresh from his Steppe tribe and searching for his first position. Thoroughly bored Tobold scrutinised his impassive, and impressive, features, checking out, for the millionth time, their competition. ‘The shiny armour is good, very professional looking, he might look good in a parade; wish my armour was like that, the breast-plate hasn’t got a single dent and I can’t see even a dot of rust, he must spend hours with the sand and polish; I should steal myself a set like that.’
Tobold chuntered on in this way for some time; meanwhile Hibalt was observing the man he considered to be the real threat – a weasel faced fellow with greasier-than-the-average-barbarian hair. He reminded Hibalt of a wet sewer rat, even down to the stink and slight skin disorder. He also looked familiar; Hibalt wandered, ‘had they been in the same tavern brawl? Nice sword though, whoever he was’. Being of a slightly philosophical disposition Hibalt decided that he couldn’t be bothered to worry about it and returned to staring at the empty sky. With nothing else left to think off he contemplated the twists of fate that had brought him to the door of Gorgo the Terrible, a legend among barbarians.
Joining the Brazen Horde had always been his dream; they were the best and didn’t often allow new members to join. Spotting the poster, and finding someone to read it to them, in the Blue Dragon (Voted Top Tavern by ‘Barbarian Magazine’ for five years in a row! Don’t miss Friday Free For All!) had been a stroke of luck.
Sometime after this, as the sun started to push long shadows across the ground a rather large individual wandered across to the group, travelling in a rather irregular manner as he bounced from yurt to tent to shack. He had the pained face of one who desperately need to relieve himself but couldn’t find the privy. Unfortunately he happened to bounce from the disk covered yurt in to the young man and then in to the weasel fellow. At this point he gave up, lifted his kilt and emptied his bladder all over his last bouncee.
‘Here we go,’ Hibalt thought, ‘Nice punch up, just the thing to relieve boredom. And that one might just get pushed off the interview list.’
The weasel man, somewhat irritated by being kept waiting and then urinated upon, drew his knife and stepped towards the immediate source of his irritation in an effort to protect himself from further drenching. The gentleman concerned blinked rapidly as the expression of profound relief vanished and he realised he was being attacked. Tobold and Hibalt looked on in amazement as the dullard leaned in to his attacker and walloped the knife away. The weasel screeched and the shook his arm, it had gone numb. He desperately backed away from his attacker, searching for another weapon as his attacker advanced. The weasel eventually backed in to Tobold, who grabbed him.
Hibalt had decided that they should get involved but since the fight had come to them, prehaps they should try to restore order; it might impress Gorgo the Terrible, which was the most important thing to achieve that day. Duly reaching his decision, Hibalt stepped smartly between the weasel and the dolt and tried to calm matters, in the approved manner of all barbarians – he smacked the weasel in the chops and sent him crashing to the floor, or would have if Tobold hadn’t been holding the fellow upright.
‘Problem solved, sir, and who would you be?’
‘I’m Harmen the Brave. Have you heard of me?’
‘No, ‘fraid not. Should we have done?’
‘I’m in a famous ballad, I am. The Lay of Gorgo The Great.’
‘Oh, no I’ve not heard that one. Is it new?’
‘It’s been doing the rounds for five years now. How can you not have heard it?’
‘I have, it’s very good, full of excitement and adventure.’ Piped up the youthful Steppe nomad.
‘And who are you, young man?’ Harmen asked, though he couldn’t have been more that five years older.
‘I’m Cylus. I haven’t got a ‘the Such and Such’ yet. My mum says you have to earn that bit.’
‘How pleasant to meet you Cylus, I’m sure you’ll get your moniker soon, you look the type.’ Hibalt scratched and looked at the unconscious fellow, still being held up by Tobold, ‘And does anyone know who this is?’
‘Snitch the Thief. Please deposit him there.’ A new voice joined the conversation. They all looked round to the yurt door before Harmen scurried away. Tobold dropped Snitch in an ungainly lump as Hibalt and Cylus scrambled back in to the queue.
‘Who’s next please?’ The man scanned his list, neatly pinned to a piece of wood by a small knife.
‘That would be us, Sir.’ It wouldn’t harm their chances to be polite, Hibalt thought.
‘Ah yes, Tobold and Hibalt. Please come this way.’
They followed him in to the yurt and looked around the dim interior which was lit only by a single oil lamp. The air was smokey and rank with the smell of sweat, stale alcohol and confined bodies. In the gloom stood a great figure, half hidden by an elaborate desk. The figure stepped forward in to the lamp light, removed the equally elaborate headdress and cloak and put out his hand to them.
‘Gentlemen, good of you to come. Do take a stool.’ The man, who could only have been Gorgo, shook their hands and indicated that the make use of the conveniently placed, and rather low stools.
End of Part One
Hope you liked that, part two will be here soon, provided I don’t have any more internet access problems. Any feedback would be helpful.