Children of Chaos


Genre Fiction

Selection The Dodec Books

Year 2012

Volume book: Full version

"You must decide

"What does Bloodlord Stralg hope to gain by slaying so many people? Does he not fear the wrath of the Bright Ones?"

A translation, then the Vigaelian sneered and replied at length.

Fiorella said, "Stralg says the only god he fears is Weru and warfare is His worship. We Florengians are timid and neglect the Terrible One, so we must be taught... to fear Weru until we wet our legs at the mere mention of His name. You and your wife may return to the city. He will keep your children as hostages for your continued obedience."

Papa flushed scarlet. "No! This is my eldest son, lord Dantio. He is eleven years old. I brought the others only to show that they are too young."

"He says all of them."

"Benard is eight and Orlando only , in the holy names! The Lawgiver wrote that only males over the age of ten may be taken as hostages."

Stralg turned and waved a signal. Men started walking out of the woods behind him. They were unarmed, yet that was how they had slaughtered every man sent against them at Two Fords.

"The bloodlord says that he gives the laws here."

Orlando squirmed free of Dantio's grasp and made a break for freedom. Stralg held out his hands. Orlando went to him, trotting on stubby legs. The Werist lifted the toddler high overhead.

"The bloodlord asks if you want to see the inside of your son's head, lord." Fiorella's voice turned shrill. "He means what he says! He will kill the child."

"My sons, then!" Papa shouted. "Let him take the boys, but my daughter is a babe at suck. Holy Demern has written—"

The big man roared, not even waiting to have Papa's words translated.

"The bloodlord says he will take the cow, too, so the calf can feed. He says you must give them all up or watch them all die, and then he will put out your eyes."

Papa fell on his knees. "I beg him to show mercy to a mother and her babe! Does holy law mean nothing to him? Has he no pity?"

"He says no, he has no pity. He has never had pity. You must decide."

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