Zardien – Lightning’s Fire, Light’s Roar Ch. 7

Summary: Introduction of the female knight Krystal

Archival Note from The Jewel Riders Archive: This story is presented as it was originally published on Stormy’s “Avalon” fan site in the late 1990s and early 2000s. It is presented for archival purposes and for the enjoyment of the Jewel Riders fandom. If you are the author of this story and wish to have it removed from the Jewel Riders Archive (or wish to share more!) please email us at archivist@jewelridersarchive.com. Happy Reading!


Warning: You know it by now. The Jewel Riders aren’t my creation. But don’t you WISH they were? BWAHAHAHAHA!

I wanna say somethin’ before this chapter. I know because this is broken into pieces there are a few contradictions and irregularities in the stories, like on chapter 3 I announced something that was going to Voral, and that ended up being chapter four. But, I’ve been reading my stories and am going to try to stay true to the storyline as best I can. But again, I’m not rewriting any previous chapters as I consider them representations of my progressive story.

(Author’s Note: For the sake of polical correctness, this title is no disrespect or intended in any way to indicate the inferiority of females. Believe me, living with a person like Tarichan has TAUGHT me females can BEAT the crud outta guys! She SCARES me! *cowers*

And considering in Jewel Riders the main characters are females, I should think the superiority of females in the series is apparent. But in MY noticably male-dominated story, I thought it funny for funny’s sake to note the main character in this chapter in a surprsing manner, as she is a knight (despite all they do, if you think about it the Jewel Riders technically AREN’T knights but more just nobility) could beat the crap out of Gwen or Voral, males and females alike. SO FEEL THE WRATH OF IT ALL AND ENJOY THE SHOW!!!)

And finally, pardon my head, people. But I’ve just got to say one thing that’s been on my mind. This one thing to all you so-called great WRITING grammarians and critics: In your face, losers! First-person, third-person, past tense, present tense etc, I’ve included them all I’m breaking all the rules of supposedly logically correct way to right a story, because I write LIKE I WANT, not how you guys DEMAND it should be. CREATIVITY in creative writing should be allowed in creative writing, including free style to choose insane contradictons of styles, ‘cause it’s SUPPOSED to be creative! *Whew*, okay, I’m back. Let’s get happer!

No story intro this time, readers, let’s just jump into this one, it speaks for itself:

The Lightning’s Fire, The Light’s Roar

Chapter Seven: A FEMALE Knight?!?

By Zardien

Her name was Krystal Valcryn, only 20, third generation knight of her family, in service for the Mancion family. (Side note for our girl fans: Not even Voral or Kilivirain had a last name!) Her father had wanted a boy, and boy did he raise her like one. Brown hair, blue eyes, didn’t even need makeup for she was naturally beautiful. Forget cat-fighting, Krystal was more likely to pelt you in the head with a cat than act like one. Kilivrain mentioned previously she was a vigilant. Perhaps that was too light a word. Vicious worked better. In a man’s world, she had to work twice as hard as any man. She was a woman feared and respected even among the most dangerous of hormone crazed knights, and those who tempted otherwise came home in a world of hurt, so to speak. It was said it better to be thrown to a pack of starving wolves with no weapons with fresh meat tied to your body than hitting on her. Not even woman could really be applied to her. Destroyer worked much better.

She took her job very seriously, and her loyalty to the Mancion dynasty was unquestionable. She would have laid her life down for the count in a second, and done anything he told her. This should not be taken the wrong way, because this should be understood in the knightly sense. In form, Krystal was a woman. In everything else, she was knight, a battlehard soldier dedicated to protection and ruthless in combat to defend what she believed in. In such, such things that perverted minds might think of were out of the question, because this was a different time and a different period of thinking. She was just seen as a knight, not a woman. She had proven it, so the most extreme of things ever asked of her would be death, not ‘sick’ things. And to answer your questions, any sicko out there, NO she wouldn’t do that, and would slay the man who tried on the spot.

An excellent swordswoman (Political correctness note: Pardon, swordsPERSON.) and horseback rider, it was apparent the weapons master and her own father had trained her well. Her armor was nothing special or form-fitting, it was logically standard kingdom knight armor, helmet, shield, sword, lance, with the insignia on the armor and shield, in the case of Mancion, a purple lion, denoting Manchester, with a silver decorative border around it denoting the countship of Mancion’s knights. (Political correctness note: KnightPERSONs.)

(Another Author Note: I know, I know, I’m trying to escape the evils of three-paragraph character description, but there are just a few people that just need and deserve it.)

As we enter into the scene, a small group of four bandits just made off with some local tax collector’s load, and Krystal, being the closest in the area, just sitting down for a quick meal in the forest, found the poor tax collector tied up and gagged to his wagon, and his horses spooked away. Krystal nodded to the tax collector (Political correctness note: GET A LIFE, POLITICAL CORRECTORS!), who begged her help. She nodded, donned her red headband around her braided hair (kept it out of her face) and helmet and got her gear on, and called to her squire.

“Derri? Derri? Get over here with my horse!!!”

The young 14-year old squire nodded clumsily and staggered to carry Krystal’s brown black-speckled horse, Stryke (what, you expected a girly horse name to a girl who punches better than she kisses?) over to her.

“Y-yes, Lady Krystal!!!”

“That was five minutes too slow. You’ve cost me some valauble time. You’re going to have to make it up in training later this afternoon. Now get your horse and try to catch up to me. I have to leave now or lose all hope on picking up their tracks.”

Derri had been in Krystal’s service for the past three years. He was a cute lil’ lad, green eyes and black hair, but very innocent. A lil’ too innocent for his own good. But Krystal saw a fighting potential in him even when he was only 10, so when he was ready to be upgraded from a page, she took him as her squire when no other knight would not.

“Yes, my lady.”

As Krystal mounted and dashed off on her horse like the wind, Derri untied the poor tax collector and staggered on his own cute lil’ white horse, Destiny, a young female horse who took a liking to him, and followed after Krytal into the thick forest.

After a while’s travel, Krystal started to pick up on the horse tracks of the thieves through the wet mud from the storm the previous morning. The thieves seemed to have made pretty good time through all this forest. But knowing that thieves, probably tired from the robbery, would have to stop sooner than she did to eat, because as far as they knew, no one was pursuing them. Or so she thought.

As the tracks followed a while, they just abruptly stopped at a point. Krystal looked around; no water source. Nothing. The only possible way the thieves could have no left any tracks in this thick mud is to have hidden the horses and climbed up the…

*THUMP*

And as simple as that, Krystal was knocked on unconcious, even with her helmet on, as two thieves simultaneously hit her with blackjacks in a timed leap from the trees they had climbed in…

Derri rushed through the wilderness, trying to find Krystal desperately as he followed the tracks. Destiny was a good horse, but still a little young so it still wanted to play a little by weaving around the trees and not going exactly where Derri wanted to. But then, he found the same spot where the tracks stopped, but he couldn’t find anything…just the place where the tracks stopped. He looked and looked around for hours, calling Krystal’s name and searching for her, but to no avail. She was gone, and there was no visible trace from that point where she went. Only that strange little glimmer in the …WHAT THE HECK?!?

Well, low and behold, look who had just crossed that mountain, but a familiar young man with a brand new shiny jewel…

Derri scaredly help up his sword…

“W-w-who goes there? I am Derri, a reel strong and powerful um…WARRIOR! Yeah…help…”

The voice smiled, laughed, and stopped approaching, just speaking in a gentle voice.

“Don’t be afraid. I mean no harm.”

Now less intimidating back in his wilderness atire, Voral’s eyes sparkled at the lad, and strangely, as Derri very scaredly looked at them, all sense of fear went away.

“Y-you’re not a thief?

“Thief? What’s a thief?”

“Huh? You don’t know what a thief is?”

“Nope.”

“You know, people who steal stuff from other people.”

“But why would anyone do a thing like that?”

“Because they’re bad!”

“Bad? What’s that?”

“Okay, you’ve convinced me, you’re too STUPID to be a thief!”

Both Voral and Derri laughed, though Voral had a confused look on his face what the joke was…

Now it is to be remembered Voral didn’t understand evil at all. He believed in the pure spirit of man because he had never experienced anything to tell him otherwise. That incident with the killing ogres was different. To him, it wasn’t murder, because ogres while smarter than average where still nothing but beasts, and he was just protecting himself from the hungry animals. Wilderness survival is much different than concepts of good and evil. MUCH more civilized than ooga Tarzan, mind you. So while he was not stupid, he didn’t quite understand what Derri was talking about when he was describing the thieves. An innocent hermit. And so a long conversation ensued, getting them nowhere.

Nevertheless, Voral said to Derri, “Perhaps this Krystal person you speak of likes these thieves.”

“Why on earth would you say that?”

“Because I can smell burnt leather coming from the west. It can only mean a quick confrontation happened here, and if your Krysal friend isn’t with you it could only mean she’s with them.”

“Which MEANS she’s been kidnapped!”

“Kidnapped? What’s…”

“Arg. I’ll explain later. I’ll need your help finding her, You can hitch a ride on the back of my horse. Let’s GO!”

“Uh…RIGHT!”

As they were mounting her Destiny neighed cutely and rubbed against Voral’s chest. His jewel glowed a little weirdly, but neither he nor Derri noticed it. Derri did notice the rub, tho, and snickered.

“Heheh. I think she likes you, uh…what’s your name?”

“Oh, sorry. It’s Voral.”

“Voral…?”

“Just Voral. I have no need for other names. And your name is Derri, right?”

“Derri Malif, yessir!”

“Hehe! Well okay, Derri, let’s GO!”

And off they valiantly rode. By now it was nearing nighfall. Scary, at that. But Voral, hot on the scent of the thieves, soothed Derri on the way with bardly songs and a voice the Backstreet Boys would be jealous of. (Note to weirdos: They’re just friends, nothing more! Sorry to spoil your weido-mobileness) Soon, they saw a fire up ahead near a cave, and saw it best to dismount and sneak up on them, as full blackness in the moonlit sky finally came.

In the camp, Krystal soon awoke in ropes around her arms to find two unshaven bums of men sitting around the campire; drinking booze, laughing, and singing songs to each other. One man was keeping watch over the horses who were put into the cave (including Stryke), and the ot googly-eying her while looking over her weapons which were a ways away from her. He stared at her holding a dagger, and started approaching her.

“Aww…ain’t you a cute one?”

She spit in his face.

“Aww…now dat ain’t a way to treat your host? Mebbe I should treat youse some mannas.”

She stared at him coldly.

He approached her quickly, and started leaning down.

“Now how’s about a nice kiss for uncle…YAAAAAH!”

Krystal HEADBUTTED him in parts down under, and the thief crumpled to the ground in pain. This alerted the other three, who were startled as she started standing up, arms still bound. At that exact moment…

“CHARRRRGE!” yepled Derri with his sword in hand, not caring about the element of surprise. Krystal’s eyes were like saucers

“What??? DERRI?!? GET OUT OF HERE!”

Voral, not really still understanding why they were there but figuring Derri wanted to play games, he drew his jewel up, yelled “BY THE POWER OF THE LIGHNTING STONE!”, flashed, and charged up into his awesome gear!

The four thieves, the one hurting finally standing up, drew their weapons and a battle ensued. Krystal single-handedly fought two of them off with her sword, parrying each sword attack, whilst Voral and Derri fought the other two.

Krystal, first, trying to get to Derri to save the innocent one, dodged blackjack and knife attacks from her opponents, returning the fire only when seeing an opening, and STRIKE, one man’s leg, and then THRUST, the other’s man’s arm, were both off, thus incapacitating them but keeping them alive Krystal, a knight, had a code of honor, and didn’t believe in killing if she didn’t have to, besides incapacitating the enemy would keep them alive to face their charges in court. She then rushed to Derri, who was fighting another soldier, because she saw his as still just an innocent child…

“Derri! STAY out of this! You could get hurt!”

Voral, thinking this was all a game, just parryed along with the thief he was fighting, who also happened to be using a sword. Fortunately, the thief he fought was not experienced with a sword, so they were on equal ground. In the end, a few zaps to the head incapacitated the thief. Voral laughed, he cheated a lil’ but to him it was just all in fun.

Krystal pushed Derri aside and struck, and pierced a wound to the last solder, who held a spear. He fell soon after, and Derri smiled.

“We did it!”

Voral laughed.

“So we did, my friend! What a fun game this has been. But weren’t we a little rough on your friends?”

Derri giggled.

“You’re going to need some work, Voral…”

Voral looked confused as ever, but laughed along.

Krystal, however, didn’t look so happy. Derri went up to her confused.

“What’s wrong, Krystal?

“TWO things. One, I TOLD you not to get into this. You’re not experienced enough yet. There will be MORE training.”

“And two?” asked Voral to her.

“Two…,” as she stared back at him, “And I thank you for helping my young squire here, but I can take it from here.”

Voral nodded.

“Whatever. Strange, though.”

Krystal looked over.

“What do you mean?”

“I swore when I looked at that encampment from afar, I swore I saw five men.”

Krystal’s eyes popped out.

“Five…huh…wha???”

A lone sniper stood on top of the cave, bow and arrow in hand, fired…

“LADY KRYSTAL!!!! LOOK OUT!!!!”

Derri rushed in, and jumped in front of Krystal…

SHINK!

The arrow sunk right into his heart, just as the sniper vanished from sight…

Krystal was in shock, but then suddenly realized what happened…

“DERRI!!!!! DERRI!!!!”

She held him in her arms, blood pouring out onto her hands…

“Don’t cry, m’lady…you don’t need me to be great…”

“*sniff*Don’t say that, Derri, I NEED you to get my weapons polished, my horse brushed…my…”

She was doing everything she could to hold back her pain, but it was too much for even the coldest of knight…

“I think I can see the stars brighter than ever, m’Lady Krystal. Maybe I can join them now…I sure did love working with you…if I had another choice…”

Krystal was now so in tears she couldn’t do anything…

“…I think I’d stick with you. Voral, take care of Destiny for me, will you? She’s so young and sensitive…I’ll always love you, Krystal…”

“*sniff sniff* DERRI!!!!!’

With that, the young squire slowly turned his head into Krystal’s arms limp in quiet death, and she held him to her chest in teary silence…

Voral stood there, motionless, only strokring Destiny. At that moment, he realized hate for the first time…and the truth of the existance of evil…and whoever was responsible for this atrocity would PAY…

 

And farther off, a smiling shadown smiled to himself, and thought deeply, “Yes, the test worked well indeed. Those pawny thugs served their purpose. A few gold pieces would make anyone rob a tax collector and stage a trap. The girl will work well, though I think I should also make a point to find out who that man is and why he has that gemstone…”

Yes, he thought to himself, “Arguss you are STILL king on the archery range…heheheh…”

 

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