Windhammer, Copyright Wayne Densley 2008 All Rights Reserved


Still winded by the fall you watch the Hresh charge at you, your head pounding from a blow sustained when you hit the ground. Your immediate danger forces you to shake off your disorientation, but it takes a moment to collect your thoughts and prepare yourself for the battle. Luckily you need only a moment. The combat is a bloody contest of crashing metal and the sickening bite of sword against flesh, however it is one you cannot afford to lose. The creatures wield their scimitars with great skill but when it ends the Hresh lay dead, sprawled and silent in the long grass. Looking about you see Pallenten returning to your position, she is sweating heavily but looks no worse for wear. Without her help the Hresh would have been upon you before you had a chance to recover from the fall. You thank Providence once again that, if nothing else, the Kalboreans had the foresight to equip you with such a steed.
After a quick look over the battleground you remount Pallenten and leave the area. With Hordim in the vicinity you can be assured that more will be lurking close by. It will be prudent to put distance between yourself and the Hresh.
With the Hordim left behind you gallop on for the west road and take stock of your position. If your estimations are correct beyond this plain you will find both the highway and Melem's Fork. The village will be a good place to find water for Pallenten, and there is an inn there that will provide a decent meal for yourself. If you do not reach the settlement until evening you should be able to find a bed for the night there as well.
As Pallenten gallops on you look about the grassland, searching for any further sign of the Hordim. It is an impossible task even from Pallenten's broad back, the plain extends for a great distance to the west and east and apart from yourself the whole expanse seems empty. To the north the storm that has been building most of the day has developed into a wall of black cloud, hung low with the heaviness of rain and exchanging huge bolts of lightning with the ground below. Even from this distance you can hear the vibrating rumble of thunder as the storm moves your way. Before this day is out you are going to have to find shelter.
An hour passes as you ride and the plain slowly turns again to areas of scattered forest. Here you find signs of tree-felling and large herds of domesticated Sempaca grazing within cleared ground. If your bearings are right the village of Melem's Fork should not be too far ahead.
Breaking from the trees you find the village, as you had hoped, directly ahead. It stands out from the verdant green of the landscape as a collection of white walled buildings, thatched with dried grass and surrounded by Sempaca farms and rows of neatly ploughed fields. Something is desperately wrong though. You catch your breath as you realise Melem's Fork is on fire. Bringing Pallenten to a halt you survey what lies ahead. The village is burning fiercely, villagers are running about trying to put out the flames and a number of bodies lie prostrate upon the main road. Smoke billows upwards, almost disguising the orderly retreat of a large group of Hordim that are making off to the south-west.

Do you wish to help the villagers fend off the Hordim? If this is your choice turn to section 116. If you would rather avoid any confrontation with the Hordim turn to section 258.

This book, and its associated books and other documents in the Chronicles of Arborell series are the intellectual property of the author, Wayne F Densley, and all rights are reserved by him. Windhammer is best viewed at 1024 x 768 resolution. Any questions regarding the Chronicles of Arborell can be answered by emailing the author at densleyw@shoal.net.au
Windhammer, Copyright Wayne Densley 2008 All Rights Reserved