Sunday, 5 January 2014

Chapter 105 - The Trap is Sprung

Ieaun paused as he heard those words and a chill ran down his spine.  The woman in the mirror continued "They're down in the dungeon, one of the traps has been triggered and someone is fiddling with it.  Get down there and deal with whoever is down there - if it's the girl, bring her up here and kill her!  Do not fail me again"

Ieaun took a deep breath, his mind flashing back to the last words the witch had said to him when they discussed his problems with his vision "remember, however bad the future seems, it can be changed if you have the courage to do so."  Then she had dropped her voice and whispered "and you are prepared to pay the price."

In an instant he knew what he had to do and what it would cost to change the future.  He walked across to the staircase down into the great hall and descended slowly as Nicodur turned and came towards him.

As Nicodur closed the distance between them he began to weave his hands in a complicated fashion and coloured lights coalesced around them.  Ieaun responded by pulling his wand out, ready to fend off whatever spell Nicodur was casting.

Coloured fog burst from Nicodur's hands, shooting straight towards Ieaun, who concentrated hard on casting the appropriate counterspell before the fog was able to wrap fully around him.

He then responded by shooting flames directly at Nicodur, hoping to catch him off guard.  Behind Nicodur, the mirror was still open and the woman behind it had settled herself in a chair to watch, almost as if this were a show put on for her benefit.

The flames were of no effect, Nicodur shrugging them off as if they were simply a light show.  

The duel continued, with spells flying back and forth, but Ieaun knew that he would tire before Nicodur - he didn't have the centuries of practice nor as much magic as a powerful fae could summon, but he knew that every minute he could keep Nicodur occupied was time for Elenie to get to her mother and get out...

Down in the dungeons, Elenie had finally managed to disarm the fire trap between her and her mother's cell.  As she slipped the last part of the trigger mechanism aside the trap cracked audibly and smoke rose from the vents.

Rather more cautiously now, Elenie approached her mother's cell, checking the walls and floor at each turn for any more traps.  The way proved to be clear now and finally she stood in front of the cell door; it was, of course, locked, but after some fiddling and a few sparks of magic, Elenie was able to get it open and face her mother properly for the first time in years.

As she emerged unsteadily from the cell, Dorilys began to cry "Elenie, is that you?  After everything I've done to you, you're here?  I'm so sorry, I've failed you in so many ways all your life, you should have left me here to rot."

As Elenie tried to quiet her, she continued "You should never have come here, it's all a trap for you, he wants to kill you.  You shouldn't have risked it for me when I've failed you as a mother and ignored you all your life."

Eventually her words trailed off into sobs, and Elenie was able to speak; "Calm down.  I know it's a trap but I wasn't going to just leave you in his hands no matter how badly you failed as a parent.  We're going to get you out of here and find a way to stop his interference with our family."

"You said that Nicodur wants to kill me, do you know why?  He had plenty of chances to do that when I was a child and he clearly had other plans then, do you know what changed?  Was it because I got away?  Because other fae intervened?  Or has something else changed since then?"

"I don't know, my memories since I came here are so blurred, but not long ago he was outside the cell laughing at me and saying that I was worthless, a failure and only good to lure you to your death.  He kept asking me how it felt to know that I had failed my child and would now lead her to her death..."

"Never mind, what matters now is that he wants me dead and I'm not going to let that happen, nor am I going to allow him to keep you to use against me in the future.  We have unicorns waiting outside for us and they can take us far away as soon as we're out of this place."

Elenie gave her mother a quick, awkward hug "Come on, we need to get out of here.  There's a tunnel back there which I came in by - these foxes dug it to help me."

As they turned to follow the passage back to the tunnel, Elenie became aware of the sounds percolating down from above - magic spells blasting to and fro.  

"Ieaun!  No!"  Turning she began running towards the sounds, forgetting the dangers both of the dungeon itself and what would be waiting for them above.  As she ran, followed by her mother, another trap sprang to life and they just managed to avoid it.

Swearing in frustration, Elenie began the painstaking task of disarming the trap, knowing that every minute she spent on this was a minute longer that Ieaun would be battling whatever lay above.

Back above, in the great hall, Ieaun was beginning to tire and Nik's expression turned gloating as he continued to fire spells.  In the mirror, the woman was openly laughing as Nik easily parried Ieaun's efforts.

Escaping from the dungeon, Elenie and her mother ran into the great hall in time to see the dying stages of the magic fight.  Ieaun's wand began to sputter as he flung one last spell at Nik.

As Elenie stared in horror, her feet seemingly immobile, Nik cackled as he parried the spell and broke through Ieaun's defences, turning him to a solid gold statue.

Elenie burst into tears as the Grim Reaper appeared in the room, pointing his finger at the statue, he intoned solemnly "IT IS TIME"

Ieaun's spirit appeared, drawn from the statue to lie unmoving on the floor.  As Elenie wept and watched the Grim Reaper take her beloved husband, she dimly heard a voice coming from the mirror "Good, now kill the girl!"

Nik turned from admiring his handiwork and began summoning a spell, but as he cast it towards Elenie, the fox sprang in front of her and took the full force of the spell.

As the spell hit the fox, she shimmered briefly and disappeared, leaving only a whisper in Elenie's mind "Look after my cub for me".

Just then, as Nik moved to begin casting another spell, a great roar shook the entire castle and they all looked up, startled, to see flames lash against the upper windows of the great hall.  Elenie recovered from her shock quicker than Nik and, reaching into her bag, she threw an elixir at him. 

As Nik crumpled to the floor, knocked out by Elenie's elixir, the woman in the mirror shrieked her displeasure "Nooo, how dare you, you little brat, you will die for that"

At that moment, the main door creaked open.  Elenie and Dorilys turned, expecting more enemies, but instead Evie stood there.  "Quickly, grab Ieaun's remains and run!"

As they obeyed her, Dorilys seizing the statue and Elenie the small urn which was all that remained of Ieaun, they heard coming from the mirror behind them "Get over there and stop them!  I want that girl dead!  And bring back Nicodur in chains - he has failed me for the last time!"


  1. Oh Dory! Oh she looks so awful! And she loved Elenie. We all know that. It was just that ****** Nik who made her forget. Oh bless her.

    Ieaun, no! No no no! Oh I was so afraid the witches advice might mean something like that. And even he knows he can't face Nik.

    Wait a... *gasp! You totally switched it! Instead of Elenie it's Ieaun! And Evie? How did she get there so quickly? Though thank goodness she's there? Who is the witch in the mirror talking to that we can't see?

    At least they grabbed the remains so he can be resurrected... right? Oh my goodness.

    1. You're right that Dory did love Elenie behind all the spells that Nik cast on her to make her not recognise her daughter, however she's going to be blaming herself for it anyway.

      I did switch them, Ieaun wasn't able to stop the future he saw completely, all he was able to do was to sacrifice himself in Elenie's place - the only way they could have stopped it from happening entirely would have been not to go there in the first place and to have given up on finding Dory. Evie got there so quickly (although not quite quickly enough) because she gave Elenie an enchanted jewel which would alert her to Elenie being in danger, as for the speed with which she got there, I think she had a little help there - dragons can fly very fast when they want to...

      Grabbing the remains means that Elenie will at least have a grave to mourn over and who knows what dire things Morgana (the witch/fae queen in the mirror) might have been able to do with his remains had they left them there. (She's talking to other minions where she is btw)

  2. Woot! Finally caught up! :D

    Nooo! Not Ieaun! I sorta saw it coming with the "and you are prepared to pay the price" part, but I still hoped it would turn out differently! Hopefully Evie will find a way to get him back.

    The whole fairy-tale feeling of Elenie's story is amazing! I love how you used the concept of good deeds repaying themselves, with the foxes and the fairies Elenie set free ultimately helping her achieve her goal. I refuse to accept that Ieaun is really gone. *pout*

    1. Yay for you catching up :)

      I'm afraid so, sacrificing himself was the only way he could stop Nik killing Elenie...

      I'm glad you liked the fairytale elements of the story, I've been reading re-workings of fairytales and its very common for the heroes to rescue animals etc only for those animals to come back and help them when they need it and I really liked the concept, especially since I've been going for a fairytale type theme this generation.

  3. I also thought Ieaun might choose to sacrifice himself. That was very brave. =(
    I hope Evie will be able to restore him to life the way she did for Talfryn.

    1. It was very brave of him to sacrifice himself, he went into the castle knowing he might have to but never breathed a word to Elenie in case she chose to turn back. I'm not entirely sure how she's going to take it if she discovers that - she has no idea at the moment that he did so and (if she's thought about it at all) thinks that he was simply discovered.

      As for whether he'll be restored to life - it seems everyone wants me to bring him back - my sister's first response after she read it was to ask if I was going to resurrect him...

    2. I still nurse a faint hope that you'll rez Pete Roman.

    3. I think that ship has sailed - if I did so he'd be a YA when Dory's about to age to elder which would be a tad awkward. If I get inspired to do a different challenge I might give them an alternate life though...

      AS for Ieaun, his fate has been determined by my rolls I'm afraid

    4. I think that ship has sailed - if I did so he'd be a YA when Dory's about to age to elder which would be a tad awkward. If I get inspired to do a different challenge I might give them an alternate life though...

      AS for Ieaun, his fate has been determined by my rolls I'm afraid

    5. Yeah, I figured that, Besides, it's not much of a story if everyone comes back from the dead and there are no bad consequences or tragedy.
      Of course we don't officially know what your roll is, so, I can hold out hope that it's 'couple' until we see otherwise....but I am braced for the bad news, should it come. =(

  4. ::Sobs:: Noooo! Gosh I had soo hoped...but he died a with great courage and honor. </3

    I don't know why the heck I didn't see this update sooner I have you in my blogger so I can catch all updates, smh.
    Glad that Elenie was able to finally get to her mother and it's a good thing Evie showed up and Elenie got out of there, if only Evie would have gotten there sooner...R.I.P. Ieaun.

    1. Sorry! He did die with honour & courage.

      I think they might have got out without Evie if necessary, but it would have depended on whether they reacted quickly enough and left before Morgana's minions arrived

  5. Oi. I had a feeling Elenie setting off that trap wouldn't go unnoticed.

    Gosh, that sent chills down my spine, Ieaun thinking about paying the price to alter the future as seen in his visions.

    You didn't! ::gasp!:: OmG, can they find a way to resurrect him?!

    1. Indeed, the main purpose of those traps was to let them know if/when someone tried to break in and to slow the intruder down.

      And, yes, I'm afraid I did...