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The Trappings of War: Volume IX

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  • The Trappings of War: Volume IX

    The Trappings of War: Volume IX
    An UnOrthOdOx view of the Glory of War

    I was awakened the next morning to the sounds of laughter outside, and as I opened the door, I was pleased to see Aro once again laughing and playing with schIsmAtIc. From the looks of things, Aro was supposed to be the dragon my son was going to slay, though it often appeared the dragon was getting the upper hand much to the delight of schI.

    Aro understood the minds of children perhaps better than any man I knew, and I was not surprised by that fact in the slightest. Ever since his wife had died giving birth to his only son, he had devoted his entire life to the raising of that son. Aro regularly took more the more menial tasks of city patrol, or guarding a settler group specifically so that he could be near his own son, Eira. And from the time of his wife’s untimely death, my own wife had taken it upon herself to accept Aro and his son as if they were a part of our own family. In so doing, I had grown to know Aro as both a father, and a brother, and was a much better man for it.

    Aro’s decisions, though, were what had led to his own lack of promotion in the military, and due to his moving around and changing units so often, he had never been recognized as the fine Captain he would have made. It was when Eira turned eight that everything finally came to a head. Eira left to find his own carrier as an officer, I had pulled some strings and gotten Eira a posting under GhengisFarb to be trained, as it was our tradition, by one of the Kings. Aro, left alone, became a changed man.

    It was during a minor exchange, if you can call it that, Aro finally spoke out, and criticized his Captain for being responsible for the escape of all Luxians that they had been chasing for some time. It was unheard of for a soldier to question the decisions of his commander. I, however, always valued an opposing view, and was able to use my own weight in council to not only stop the inquisition into the matter, but to have Aro promoted to Captain under my own command. This move paid off nearly instantly as well, as it was Aro’s own ideas that ended up leading to the capture of the sole remaining survivor from Lux, Trip, who had been sent to work in our fields till the end of his days.

    Aro, on his own part, had become as much of a father to my own children as I was. Having nowhere else, really, to go, I always made it a point to bring him back home with me whenever our unit was given leave. He would fascinate both sEctArIAn and schIsmAtIc with tales of our battles and travels, and would even produce the occasional sketch that he had begun to make in those slow hours of patrolling the countryside.

    It came as no surprise, then, that with the production of that first galley, Aro dreamed of seeing and drawing new and exciting landscapes. It was nice to see him excited over something again, and I happily dismissed him from my service to seek out his own ship to Captain. Still, it was nice to see him back home again, and by the looks of things, he had also missed the children, if nothing else.

    “Ok, schI, mind if I take your dragon away for a minute, to go and show him your dad’s dragon?” I gently asked.

    “Can I come, this time!?” schI excitedly asked “I have been learning all about boats! I am going to be a Captain just like Uncle Aro.”

    “That would make me very happy, son, but your mother would kill me if you so much as bumped your head. I promise to take you with us next time we go to council, though, how’s that?” I answered with a grin and off he skipped to tell all his friends he would be going to Imperia one day. “Shall we then, Aro?”

    We walked the short distance to the shore without speaking much, Aro seemed to be in some deep thought, and I chose not to interrupt him from it for the time being. For the most part the silence continued as we began to row out in search of the dragon.

    “’dOx” Aro began, sounding more solemn than usual. “would you mind if I stayed here a bit?”

    “By all Hells, Aro, you know you don’t even need ask that!”

    “No, ‘dOx, I’m serious. Seeing young schI, there, well, I think I want to see him grow up a little more.” I made a move to speak, but was cut off again. “I’m getting too old to be sailing around anymore, and I think I want to start drawing some PEOPLE, not just maps. This little island of yours will let me keep sailing a boat, but also allow me plenty of opportunity to study and sketch both people and places. Besides, I want to be a part of BUILDING something.”

    “Aro, you are the closest thing I have to a brother, and one of the best men I have ever met, of course you can stay. On one condition.” I replied “No more of this sentimental crap. Come now, where is the Aro I know? Besides, you’ve just saved me trying to find excuses to keep you around!”

    At this point, the dragon breached the surface off to our port, much closer than I had ever seen it before. A mighty plume of water sprayed from a place on the back of it’s massive head, showering us with a fine mist of water. It seemed to me, it took ages for the length of it’s back to make it’s course through the water, and then the tail seemed to hover in mid air, mocking us with it’s size and power before slipping quietly back into the depths from whence it came. We stood breathless for what seemed an eternity before I was able to finally speak.


    “She is beautiful! You sure you can go through killing her, as magnificent as she is?” His eyes were still searching for another glimpse of the beast.

    “She? Never mind. There is a whole family of them somewhere. Master Zen has some off his coast as well, he tells me, and we have sighted as many as five at one time here, so the way I see it, it will be no different than hunting elk, or deer. Magnificent animals, both, but still a resource to be tapped for the betterment of man.” I answered, a little surprised by the question.

    “I suppose your right, it’s just, well, LOOK AT HER! Beautiful.”
    One who has a surplus of the unorthodox shall attain surpassing victories. - Sun Pin
    You're wierd. - Krill

    An UnOrthOdOx Hobby

  • #2
    I can't wait for the dragon hunt!


    • #3
      "One day if I do go to heaven, I'm going to do what every San Franciscan does who goes to heaven - I'll look around and say, 'It ain't bad, but it ain't San Francisco.'" - Herb Caen, 1996
      "If God, as they say, is homophobic, I wouldn't worship that God." - Archbishop Desmond Tutu