The Choke Lords

II

Castle Ferin had changed Houses many times over the years, presently it was the seat of House Berthold, a young House that had proven itself noble and true.  There were so few worthy humans, thought Terik, unfortunate the Bertholds should perish.  Not all would, they must find solace in that.

Terik mused on the drama of human architecture. For all their faults the humans had never lacked a flare for spectacle. Castle Ferin had been built on land known as The Choke. A point at which the wide and lazy Breede River was choked into raging whitecaps by the banks of two opposing rocky beaches. The Choke Lords had built Castle Ferin straight across the river from bank to bank and at the fore-wall they had fashioned a fantastic yawning mouth through which all traffic must pass. A gluttonous fool washing down the hard labor of the south with the Breede, thought Terik. 

The lands surrounding the Choke were to rocky to grow any tradable quantity of crops, but the Breede was the fastest route between the bountiful southern lands and the seats of power to the north.

It had been several weeks since the Choke Lord had taken a drink. Terik would remedy that.

But Jerin, clang, clang, clangThe burden you bear is for all of us.

Terik breathed deep, the pride of his sons sacrifice filled his chest. He turned back to find his Mahnikee assembled. There were no horns or drums. The battle cry of the Mahnikee was hardly a whisper, “lets give them a drink”, Terik said, and so the the taking of Castle Ferin began while the pigs lay sleeping in the mud.

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