The League of Dragonborn
Chapter One: The Dragon and the Wolf
Hey all! Welcome to the League of Dragonborn, a sequel to both my previous stories, The Dragon Among the Wolves and A Tale of Two Nightingales. This is just a preview for the time being, since A Tale of Two Nightingales is still in the process of being finished. Still, I thought it would be fun to offer you guys a taste of what's to come. -Sass
P.S. Read at your own pleasure, but obviously it will make more sense/be more enjoyable if you've finished my first two stories!
"So you don't want to go anymore?" Sofja asked in an even tone. Vilkas almost wouldn't have been able to tell that she was angry, except for the fact that her eyebrow twitched slightly. It was over a month ago that she'd become the newest Harbinger, and in that time, she'd been learning to control her temper—although her temper, though prodigious, was no match for Vilkas'. He, too, was learning to be more controlled, especially now that things had calmed down, and he and Sofja together felt... Well, it seemed naive, or premature even, to say happy. Vilkas could hardly admit it to himself, and yet, it was true.
"I do want to go... I just don't want to go now," Vilkas clarified, half a smirk on his tan face as he leaned against the wall next to the doorway of their quarters. They weren't officially their quarters, since they were officially the Harbinger's quarters, but everyone knew and seemed to approve of Sofja and Vilkas' relationship, and so he didn't bother trying to be discreet about sharing them with Sofja. After all, he and Sofja were promised to one another.
"You don't even have time to go, do you?" Vilkas questioned quickly, watching as Sofja threw a pile of clothing into a rucksack. "I mean between your meeting with the Greybeards, your having to travel to Riften, it's understandable that—"
Sofja looked up suddenly, her pale eyes glaring at Vilkas as she chucked the rucksack to the ground. It hit with a dull thud. "This is not about me, this is about you. This is about being free of the blood, and it's important to you, which means it's important to me. Listen," she continued, a little more gently, "I know you're afraid of who you think you'll be without it, but the man I love has nothing to do with the wolf's blood." Freja sighed, regaining her composure. Moving away from the bed, Sofja walked towards Vilkas, reaching up to caress his stubbled cheeks. Her voice was soft and even. "And I don't want you to keep putting this off because of me."
A smirk spread across Vilkas lips as he pressed them down against hers with feathery lightness. His calloused fingers wove their way into Sofja's delicate red hair almost without him realizing it; Vilkas loved the feeling of her, and his fingers somehow always managed to become entwined in her fiery locks if they stood close enough. "I know. But you're the Harbinger of us all, now. You have a duty to all of us, and to Whiterun, not just me, even if I will one day be your husband. I told you that Farkas could accompany me."
The feeling of Vilkas' kiss sent shivers down Sofja's spine, and she welcomed it happily. Her arms snaked around his neck as she reluctantly pulled away from his lips, sighing. "I know, but..." Sofja paused, gathering her thoughts. "Listen. After I speak with the Greybeards, we will go to the tomb of Ysgramor and free you of the blood. It's too important to put off any longer than that. Riften can wait."
Vilkas nodded, smiling. "Fine, my love. As you wish." Planting a kiss on top of her head, the tall, burly Companion pulled away from her and turned towards the door. "I'm going to go train in the yard with Farkas. I'll see you later."
Sofja smiled as she walked back towards the bed, determined to finish her packing. "See you then, my wolf."
Vilkas kept the smile plastered on his face just long enough to get into the hallway, where Aela and Farkas were waiting. "Well?" She asked impatiently, her auburn hair tucked behind her ears. "Did you tell her?"
Farkas folded his arms, chuckling. "Why do you pretend like you weren't eavesdropping? It's not like you've gotten rid of the blood and can't hear through walls anymore. He didn't tell her."
Vilkas snarled at his brother, and motioned for the two of them to follow him upstairs, where they were out of Sofja's earshot. "No, I didn't mention it. Why does she need to know that the dragons have almost completely invaded the southeast? Why does it have to be her burden to bear? It's hard enough for her to have to learn to be the Harbinger of the Companions. I don't see how she can be the Dragonborn savior as well," Vilkas said stubbornly.
"Well, unfortunately for you, Vilkas," Aela snapped as they trudged up the stairs, "none of that is up to you. Aren't you the one who always encouraged her to be some sort of hero? The fact is, she's both the Harbinger and the Dragonborn. And right now, things are worse than ever. There have been ten dragon sightings here in the last week alone. Reports of crops destroyed, livestock burnt to a crisp... And the Jarl has received more missing person reports than ever. There's talk that the dragons are swooping down and just... carrying people clean away."
"It's true, brother. And the Greybeards have sent two letters every week this month, requesting Sofja's presence on their big, dumb mountain."
Vilkas rubbed his temples, frustrated by how frustrated he felt this early in the day. Was it too early to start drinking mead? "Well, she's finally going to see them, to figure out what this whole 'League of Dragonborn' business is. Then she has to go to Riften to meet some woman, although they Greybeards have managed to be incredibly vague despite the ridiculous amount of letters they've sent. All they've revealed is that this woman in Riften also apparently has Dragonborn powers. They want Sofja to meet her, to see if they can work together to help the cities come up with some sort of defensive plan."
"Can there be more than one Dragonborn?" Farkas asked simply.
Aela scoffed. "No, you imbecile. That's the whole point of the Dragonborn. There's only one every few centuries. I hope Sofja didn't buy that crap," the Huntress remarked decidedly, crossing her arms over her chest.
"She's certainly skeptical," Vilkas replied. "The Greybeards can't be lying, but still... Something strange is going on here. Anyway, it's no matter. After Sofja returns from the Greybeards, she's going to postpone the trip to Riften so I can finally purge the wolf blood from my veins, with her by my side." Just saying the words, Vilkas stood a bit taller. The moment he had been waiting for since before Kodlak's death was drawing near.
Aela simply rolled her eyes. "Good for you, pup. Can't wait to see how much weaker you'll become."
Farkas slapped Vilkas on the back a little harder than Vilkas would've liked, and leaned towards him, chuckling. "Well Sofja's gotten rid of the blood, and she's still strong, isn't that right brother? Strong enough to keep up with you in bed every night, at least. It's bad enough having to hear you two through the walls every night... They're as thin as paper." With that remark, Farkas and Aela began laughing wildly, while Vilkas' blood began to boil. He grabbed the scruff of Farkas' neck and furrowed his brows. "Hush up, before I skin you alive and wear it as a pelt. Both of you," Vilkas warned, though a small smirk tugged at his lips.
"Well, either way brother. I'm sure it'll all get sorted out. I mean, Sofja already died once, so she should be able to deal with everything else, right?"
"I suppose so," Vilkas agreed. Strangely, that was a comforting thought.
"Who's this woman in Riften? Anyone we should know?" Aela asked curiously.
Vilkas shook his head, sighing with annoyance. "No. All the Greybeards said in their letter was that she's a thief, or some such lowlife. Her name is 'Freja'."