I WATCHED AS men began rushing to the edges of the newer inner wall. The bridge over the moat was quickly closed, and I felt a thud in my chest when the granite block slammed down to seal the wall up. I jumped when there was a massive loud crack as the southern wall of the valley collapsed completely!
“Get the Citadels to target those tunnels!” I said.
“Do it!” General Slane told someone. “Have our trebuchets target the areas they’re regrouping too. The outer castle wall will be surrounded soon, have them continue firing on their troops no matter what! Don’t let them form up ranks!”
I watched in horror as the valley began filling up with troops from the two tunnels. I watched a distant figure that used magic to push away the rubble and clear an opening the size of the road flat. As soon as he did that men began rapidly traveling towards us.
“How many men do they have left?” I asked.
“We think about fifteen-thousand now,” he said, “those special forces troops helped with pushing desertion levels and ambushes. Their forces also wasted a lot of lives on the wall in the past weeks…”
“About eight-thousand within these walls,” he said and pointed to the walls where I could see on the scrying mirrors that men were side by side atop the wall. Within the yard troops were gathered in ranks. Archers seemed to be setting up to volley arrows over the walls, but waited for the orders. Meanwhile I watched the trebuchets continue flinging their own barrages.
The Citadels did everything we could have hoped for! There was even some luck on our side as they managed to cause landslides that sealed off the tunnels from further troops coming through! Just as we cheered that victory, Citadel Four activated their self-destruct function to prevent the vantage point being taken by Camulus’ troops who had been scaling the cliffs. The mushroom cloud explosion looked like a small nuke had gone off, and chunks of the citadel flew into the air and fell amidst their troops still trying to form up ranks.
I felt myself squatting for a second and realized I had just pooped my diaper. I sighed and looked at Caireen who was talking to a few men for a moment before she noticed me and wrinkled her nose. “Come on Princess,” she said to me. She carried me to a nearby dining room and said, “Look… Sweetie I don’t know what’s going to happen today, but I want you to know I love you as the daughter I’ve never had.” She hugged me tightly, “With that being said, it’s time for you to be a big girl today. Go ahead and change your own diaper,” she told me.
I sheepishly looked at her, feeling scared and needy. “Do I have to…?”
She smiled and performed a spell, “Okay, I took care of this one. Until we’re done with this war, you’re on your own with changes. Go ahead and use the spell and you’ll be fine…” She sighed, “You’re also allowed in the real world now too…”
I hugged her tightly, “I love you.”
“I love you too…” she told me. “Now, let’s feed you one more time, and then I suspect we will have our hands full…”
I looked up at her face that was marred with streaming tears as she brought me to her breast. She bounced me gently as I nursed from both breasts. I looked into her face and her teary eyes as she gently bounced me and cooed at me soothingly. Before I knew it she was burping me and placing me back on my feet. “Now my little princess, it’s time for us to go to the wall and meet that bastard. Hold nothing back, today we are fighting for our survival.”
I walked beside her as we were joined by General Slane and his entourage left the main castle. It was a solid building that might hold up against a small raiding party, but a force the size of Camulus’ army would only be slowed for a few minutes by the walls and wards of the main castle. We strode across the main entrance area, past the beautiful fountain, and walked the two-hundred yards to the base of the wall I had formed. Even though I hated steps, I climbed the hundreds of steps to the top myself, and stood beside an opening in the wall. All of us looked down at the massive army attempting to regroup below.
The two remaining Citadels were taking advantage of the forces forming into tight ranks – explosive jars were flinging constantly from their trebuchets! I watched as a group of five men caught fire and attempted to put themselves out. Several men who tried to help them also caught fire before Camulus ordered archers to kill all of them. It was an act repeated across their lines over and over.
Inside the walls below us, our sixteen trebuchets were firing everything they could get their hands on. From steel, to stone, to statues - each impact took out at least a few dozen to a hundred men depending on what was being flung. From across the valley I could see the massive wooden structures and ladders they’d attacked the wall with were now moving towards the castle.
A white flag went up from the back of the ranks and Caireen made a command to pause the efforts from within the castle. On a tall black horse, in gaudy golden armor, King Camulus trotted up to the wall. Seeing Caireen and I he shouted, “Surrender! You cannot possibly hold out forever! I have more men, and we will overrun you all soon!”
I felt silence, and the people standing around us obviously had lost their own hope. Looking around I felt my stomach plummet as I saw a young boy of about thirteen standing in full armor that looked almost too heavy for his frame. The crossbow he held looked bigger than he was. I looked down and saw women stationed beside the trebuchets, helping to reload them.
Looking up at Caireen, I smiled, “May I?”
She looked at me, “Your decision.”
I looked out at King Camulus, “Camulus, our response is this, COME AND TAKE IT! We will not surrender!”
At my shout I heard thousands of troops gathered on the wall, and below shout, “Come and Take It!”
The battle cry that had been shouted in battle first in ancient history with Leonidas, then again in the American Revolution, and more well known in Texas’ own war of independence, once again took the place in people’s hearts! It became a rallying cry and Camulus almost looked stunned.
“No rules you said?” I asked Caireen as his horse reared up in fright from the shouts.
“No rules,” she agreed.
With that I decided he didn’t deserve a white flag of truce! The ground from under his horse began crumbling and he decided to retreat from the front. I began shooting off magic at the front lines of his troops even as they began rushing the castle! “Fire!!!” I heard up and down the curved wall and our bowmen began firing arrow after arrow. It looked like there were clouds in the sky as our arrows flew and I watched men drop as they were struck by them. Explosions rained down on the men from Caireen, and I personally obliterated a whole line of troops that neared the moat by covering them with a fountain of water and freezing it. The rank behind them fell to fire as they tried to trample past them.
The wall was completely solid now with the granite piece that had dropped in place. It was held in place by the same magical key idea as my treehouse. I turned curiously and could just see it in the distance, ‘I hope someday this can be a piece to play again...’ I thought, distracted for just a second. I snapped out of it though and watched as the first troops tried to jump into the fifty-foot-deep moat I had formed. I’d been careful to ensure it wouldn’t cause problems of seepage into the castle, so the tall walls descended in one granite piece from the top, all the way to about a hundred feet below the moat and into bedrock. Caireen had cast an illusion making it seem like it was only a few feet deep though.
His soldiers all wore heavy armor, and so within moments the first few hundred men who jumped in, hoping to muck their way across the shallow moat, suddenly discovered they were drowning. Letting them be forgotten for the moment I tried targeting spells at the catapults they were setting up across the field of battle. Destroying them completely wasn’t necessary, just taking care of breaking axles or baskets, was enough to keep them from being used against us. I was frugal and only used a few ley lines of power in each of the spells, but I also didn’t hold back the blasts from continuing through the ground. Rapidly the back of the enemy lines, where they tried to organize the war engines, was becoming a pockmarked mess.
I was just getting ready to attack what looked to be the final catapult that had made it into the valley when I watched Camulus himself approach the moat. Several of the crossbows and archers fired at his position, but his men stepped in with massive shields and protected him. He reached the edge of the moat and began working a spell.
He wasn’t attacking the top of the walls. Instead he was firing small spells and poking thousands of small holes below the water line in the granite of the wall. I stared for a moment trying to figure out what he was doing.
It was then that I snapped out of my stare and used my own magic in the hopes of stopping him when I realized his plan.
It was brilliant…
He instantly froze the moat into one massive piece of ice.
The little holes had filled with water, and acted as thousands of little wedges to break apart the wall. With those, and one massive piece of ice caught between two immovable walls… it was just physics at work. When I heard a ‘crack’ from the wall below me I yelled, “Shit!!! Get off the wall!” I cried out to the men around me. All around me people used the fireman style poles I had stationed about the walls for quick retreat as the ice began to crack the walls where I had just been standing into hundreds of smaller boulder size pieces. Another spell he performed brought the rock down into the moat and it now became a land bridge for his troops to cross.
I drew my sword as the first soldier came at me. I parried, side stepped him, and stabbed him in the side where his armor was weak. My sword passed through just below his rib cage and killed him. I had no time to dwell on it though, as hundreds of troops began to press and advance our own broken lines. I fought alongside twenty other troops that circled me with sword and spells, before one said, “Your Highness, pull back to a better position at the castle!”
I wanted to argue, but he just barely blocked a sword meant for me right then. I managed to retreat back fifty yards before a shape flew in front of me and turned into Rosemerta holding her own sword. “Miss me?”
“Not really,” I told her. “Miss being dead?”
“You’re going to pay for that!”
She stepped forward to try and grab me. I sliced at an angle and managed to cut her leg almost cleanly off above the knee with a blow from the exceptionally sharp sword. I didn’t have long to wait before she performed a counter attack at me and I felt a searing cut on my left arm. I used magic to attempt to freeze her, but to her credit she wasn’t being fooled by the same trick twice. Round and round we went before I managed to gather enough essence out of five ley lines to do something with. I debated on what to do, but when she forced me next to the fountain, I decided I’d take Camulus’ lead and let the water do most of the work. I flash heated the water in the fountain suddenly and tripped her good leg, shoving her inside of it.
She screamed as her flesh was being boiled off! She knelt upright and tried to crawl out of the fountain. From past experience with her I knew better than to count her out, and leaped up to stab her through the heart with my sword, while simultaneously blasting her with seven lines worth of a fiery blast. I heaved in fatigue as she disintegrated again in front of me.
The clang of battle continued around me, but an odd sound came from my right. ‘Who’s clapping?’
I looked over and saw Maponus. He looked younger here, clearly his human that he’d been connected with back home was older than here, but the bloody sword he held in his hand told me he was probably more capable here. “Nice show little girl. I think we’ve established this little dance in both worlds now. You kill her, I come after you. You know since you killed my vessel in the other world… I think it’s your turn. I’ll enjoy seeing you dead in both worlds.”
“No, I really don’t think so,” I told him. “I think it’s just time for you to die here too.”
He laughed, “There I was inside a mortal human… a weak one at that. I should never have let his body capture me!”
“Well, you’re since such a weakling, I won’t hold it against you,” I spat at him.
“You’ll pay for that little girl. You do realize that I’m not just a person here? I’m a god, and you will not defeat me.”
“You know what all villains have in common?” I asked him.
“You all talk too damn much!” I said as I flung a massive spell of twelve lines at him while simultaneously putting up another shield around me. It was only then that I realized my shield had fallen earlier, and I’d been stupid enough not to put it back up!
He just barely dodged it and began running forward towards me. I dodged a stab of his sword, and parried another. He kept pushing me further up towards the castle steps. I was just about to take and make my own slash at him, when a sword from behind me just about cleaved my head open. I barely dodged, rolled, and stabbed the man who had tried to cowardly sneak behind my back.
“Really?” I said to him, “Can’t even beat a baby girl on your own?”
He growled and leapt at me again. I was pretty sure he was going to swing his sword down at me from third position, and watched as he did so, trying to slash down at me. Rather than parry him again, I used my sword to circle around his blade, momentarily trapping it long enough to kick his knee as hard as I could.
Even through the poleyn he wore over the top, I could tell that hurt. In fact, my kick had bent the metal so badly he couldn’t stand up straight. “You stupid bitch!” He said and advanced again. I went and parried his sword, but missed dodging the backhanded swing from his other hand. His metal gauntlet made me see stars as I fell to the ground.
I spat out blood and lots of teeth, feeling dizzy right then. ‘Is this it?’ I wondered for a moment.
Right then another of our men came and swung his sword at the prince. Maponus was taken by surprise, and it took him the better part of two minutes to dispatch our man who was an excellent swordsman. In the meantime, someone picked me up, “Come on, Princess we have to get you out of here,” a maid grabbed me and began running with me into the castle, the doors shutting behind us.
I was dizzy as she continued running and didn’t know what to do. “Stop…” I said, “I can’t leave them… Mommy!”
“She told me to get you out of the castle Princess. At least you can live…”
I attempted to use some spells she’d taught me for healing, but had trouble focusing with my head pounding as she ran into some secret tunnel I didn’t know. Before long it led out to the forest, and the meadow near my treehouse. “Come on Princess, we need to get you inside!” She told me, climbing the steps.
“No… I have to go back; I can’t let her die!”
Just as we reached the steps a blast struck a tree near us. I looked at the door, opened it with my magic, and shoved the maid inside before relocking it. Maponus advanced quickly, having ditched the parts of the armor that were bent.
“Running away?” he asked.
I shook my head, “Not intentionally. When you look like a baby, everyone just wants to baby you.”
“Oh… I know,” he said with a feral grin that made me want to vomit.
“Come on,” I told him, standing beside the tree, “Let’s finish this, one way or another.”
“I agree!” He said, “I’m going to look forward to playing with you before I kill you though!”
“Well, I’m right here, come get me.”
He charged at me from about fifteen feet away, sword held high in the air. Other than in the practice room in the castle, the place I could feel the artery of energy the best was definitely this old tree. I drew every bit of essence and strength from it while he charged at me.
When he finally got close, I fired a low powered bolt of the freeze spell and watched him easily dodge it. When I saw the direction he dodged, I used the majority of the essence I’d gathered to bring the granite from deep in the earth around him, and formed it into a full body casting of him, leaving just his head free. He began to try and say something, I assumed to cast a spell.
“And now, I hope I’m finally rid of your disgusting ass!” I said before he could. I flung another powerful bolt of my energy blast straight into his head, and watched his horrified face for a millisecond before his head exploded like a watermelon.
Suddenly having nothing left, I staggered to the ground. I was bleeding from several deep cuts on my body, and my head was still woozy from his backhand. If it wasn’t for adrenaline, I was pretty sure my body would have demanded I be passed out at that point. As it was, I was on my knees when I realized the maid was banging on the door to get out of the treehouse. I crawled up the steps and unlocked the door for her. She saw the sight of Maponus’ remains and promptly vomited.
“Oh, my goddess, are you okay!?!?” She asked me.
“Not really,” I told her. “I need to get back to the castle, I have to help!”
“You’re too hurt, you need to stay and heal and wait for them to fight it out.”
“If I don’t go, and we lose, do you think I’ll be able to live with myself knowing I hid away? I appreciate the idea of getting me here, but I have to go back.”
She sighed, “Very well, Your Highness. You will at least let me bandage up your arm?”
I looked and could see blood was still seeping out of the wound. I’d become so accustomed to quickly healing in my world, I forgot that didn’t seem to happen the same way here. I nodded at her.
As she bandaged the wound, I ran my tongue across my mouth. I had lost all of my front teeth, and my molars felt wrong too. There was still the taste of blood in my mouth, and I spat onto the ground and groaned when I saw several molars there too. I did my best to perform a healing spell on my mouth and the rest of my body. If it hadn’t been for the strength of the ley lines at the tree, I was pretty sure I couldn’t have done even as much as I did.
I sighed and waited as she tore off pieces of her apron and tied it off on my arm.
“I guess that’s as good as we can get… Your Highness, are you sure you can’t just…”
“I’m sure,” I told her and held my arms up to her, “If you can carry me back, I can use the time to keep trying to build some energy up.”
“Yes, Your Highness,” she said and placed me on her hip.
“What’s your name?” I asked her.
“Niamh, Your Highness,” she told me.
“Thank you for your help, Niamh,” I told her. “You saved my life back there.”
I breathed slowly in and out and tried to replenish my reserves as she carried me in reverse through the tunnel back into the castle. We had just reached the front door when it was flung open! Camulus’ men scrambled in, and just outside the door I saw Camulus fighting with Caireen. I leapt out of Niamh’s arms and tried to decide where to start.
Caireen and Camulus were going back and forth with magic and sword in a deadly dance that I didn’t have the time to watch. Twenty men advanced on me and I didn’t hold back with magic, freezing the hearts of each of them and watching them drop dead where they stood. I wanted to vomit, but I couldn’t linger. Twenty more ringed the battle around Caireen and I dropped them the same way.
I was distracted by two men rushing me for just a second, I side stepped, and used a magic bolt to each of them. I looked up in time to see Camulus standing over Caireen, his sword about to plunge into her chest!
“No!!!!!!!!” I screamed!
He looked up at me and had the nerve to laugh, “Oh, and here is your human host now!”
“If you kill her, I become queen. Your son is dead, so you don’t get the land by having him marry me.”
“All I have to do is kill you and I’ve got it all as it is. Shouldn’t take but a few minutes…”
“Then let’s do it!” I told him angrily.
He laughed, “Okay, you know what,” he did some sort of spell and bound Caireen to the steps with chains on her wrists, ankles, and neck, “you’re right, it’ll be much more enjoyable to have her watch you die.”
“Who says that I’m dying, asshole?”
He strode over towards me and I wasted no time flinging a shield over my body. Raising my sword towards him I think he was surprised when I blocked his blade and successfully tumbled past him. I wasted no time stabbing him with my sword – but his own magical shield stopped it. A backhanded blow from his metal gauntlet caught me on the shoulder of my bad arm and I rolled away.
He advanced at me again and swung his sword at me. At the last minute though he changed directions and caught me on my left arm again. My shield kept it from being cleaved off, but I suddenly couldn’t do anything with the arm, and it hung limply at my side.
“Well, well, well,” he said, “I may enjoy this more than I thought.”
“I’m sure you will!” I told him as I circled around him. The fights with Rosemerta, Maponus, and now him, had injured me badly and I was in so much pain! All I wanted to do was give in and go to sleep! I knew that was probably blood loss talking, but I glanced at Caireen briefly. As Camulus continued circling me I saw her terrified face. The face of someone who loved me as her daughter. The face of someone who had saved my life, and I loved her so much!
I opened myself up completely to the massive ley artery in the castle and tried to decide what to do – but I decided I wouldn’t give up until I was dead!
He didn’t give me much of an opening to think though, attacking me and sweeping the sword low in front of him at the height of my knees. With him bent over I used his arms as a ramp and climbed on top of his shoulders. Suddenly I had a desperate idea, and I pressed my hand to his back behind his heart and pushed every ounce of energy I had gathered into one freezing spell.
I felt drained as I landed behind him, and he turned to look at me with amusement. “Did you expect that to do something…?”
Right then I used the last of my strength to pull one of the arrows from an archer’s quiver and steered it right to the spot I had frozen as cold as I possibly could. There was a sound like shattering glass, and then suddenly an arrowhead appeared through his chest.
“What the…?” He cried out and then tumbled to the ground on his knees, “How did you…?” He gasped for air.
Knowing what I had experienced with Rosemerta, I stumbled over to him and leveled my sword at his neck, charged the sword with essence, and slashed a now fiery blade straight across his neck. His heart had stopped pumping when it had been torn apart by the arrow, but until my slash he had just enough magic to keep himself alive. As his decapitated head rolled towards his men, they took one look at me and ran screaming “Retreat!!!” I could stand no longer, and crawled over to Caireen on my hands and knees. I managed to perform a spell to remove her chains and said, “Mommy…” before I passed out.
There are two more chapters and an epilogue remaining to this work. I'll post them sometime this week. Thanks for reading, please let me know what you think!
maja · Jul 26, 2021I finally managed to catch up and I'm really looking forward to what you'll have for us for the end. Until the last time I commented, a lot has happened and I really liked the course of events. I'm happy every time when Sofia wakes up in her dreams and I'm happy every time she wakes up in the real world, knowing that she'll have another interesting day ahead of her. You did a great job of writing those two words and linking them together. You also wrote a great plot, an actual story, something that's interesting to read because of that as well and not only because of the diaper aspect to it. I don't know whether you will finish with a calm good ending or have another surprise for us, but I'm obviously fine with both, since the story was an amazing read so far. There is only one thing I've been missing (if I haven't overlooked it) and that is a certain talk between Hannah and Sofia. As far as I know, Hannah doesn't know that Sofia had a crush on him back before everything happened and I don't know if there is anything more to be said about Hannah prefering "non-traditional relationships" (As said in ch.7). Another thing I would've liked to see, is what those "alternate forms of punishment" (ch.11) look like, since we only know that spanking is one of them. Maybe they're yet to come in the remaining chapters? Who knows?