Hello everyone, here is Chapter 13 of the Blue Wolf. Will is about to enact one of his most daring plans yet. Two members of the Triarch of Volantis tried to have him killed twice. The first by poisoned arrow from the Golden Company and the second from assassins when he in a deep sleep. Now it's his turn and like he promised them when he sent back the bodies of the assassins, they missed. He won't. Enjoy!
A new year was nearly here what better way to celebrate that then with an assassination of two of the Volantene Triarchy. The idea seemed to come from a fevered mind and for those that weren't aware of the situation then calling Prince William Baratheon mad might be warranted but he wasn't mad. Well maybe a bit but that's not what this was about. This was justice coming for the Triarch members Malaqua Maegyr and Nyessos Vhassar. They were the two who contracted the Golden Company against him, gave Jon Connington the poisoned arrow which nearly killed him, and then contracted those assassins who tried to kill him when he was in a deep sleep. Unfortunately for them, William managed to survive his ordeals and near-deaths with their slave empire weakening by the day. Things in Volantis weren't good with Will's continued actions in Slaver's Bay and the newfound success he was having. Rather then wait for them to strike at him again, he decided it was to time to stop playing defensively and make a play of his own. And he did promise that he wouldn't miss with his shot if an opportunity presented itself which it did.
They had their plan and knew what to do so now it was time to put it into action. Knowing that word traveled fast they had to be careful in how they got to Volantis because if word eventually got to the Triarchy then their plan was for nothing. They would be in a densely packed city of thousands if not millions which already makes traversal harder then normal but it was also filled with slave owners and their men whose business and profits have been impacted by what they were doing so the odds were stacked against them. Thankfully, they weren't completely helpless and doing this just on a whim. William had sent Hercules and his group to Volantis in secret a while ago to get a better gauge of what was going on and learn any new information. That's when Autolycus, Amphiaraus and Iolaus returned with the news and opportunity presented to them on the Triarch. With that information they devised a pretty solid plan on how to go through with it that mitigated the potential pitfalls but they also had some help. In preparation for their plan, Will had Kinvara go back to Volantis ahead of them. She was the High Priestess of the Red Temple of Volantis so she was an asset he could use. She first arrived back when Will was moving from Astapor to Yunkai and claimed that she was here to help guide him in the years to come since he was this Prince that was Promised. Will still wasn't sure if that prophecy meant anything and decided not to get bogged down on if it was real but took her help. Her visions proved to be useful as she warned him of the dangers in Yunkai with M'Baku returning and the danger Hercules and the others would face. It's what let Will come to their aid. Will still wasn't sure how he felt about the Lord of Light or the religion but she was helpful, her followers helped spread word of his efforts across Essos and beyond, and he made her swear that there would be no human sacrifices or burning people at the stake for him. She kept her word. With her in Volantis, they had some help that could prove useful in case something happened.
It was time to put their plan into motion.
A very familiar looking Golden Crown Eagle was seen flying around in the sky before it changed direction, nimbly passing ships and seagulls as it made its way into the city below. Trade and cargo ships from various destinations were docked or anchored in Volantis vast network of ports. While their slave trade had been impacted recently, the port was still busy with activity so the port masters were kept busy along with all their dockhands and slaves hard at work. Because of the busy nature of the ports and all the cargo and personnel coming in from all over, the soldiers and guards on duty had to stay vigilant but that was an easier job in explanation rather then execution. There were so many people from all over bringing so many things that they couldn't keep up with all of them at once. They were trained to look out for thieves, pickpockets, pirates, or slaves trying to rebel against their masters. Not trained warriors who disguised themselves as ship hands to sneak into the city.
That's what Will and his select group did to get into Volantis undetected. They disguised themselves to look like ships hands and disembarked a trade ship when it landed in Volantis to sell some of its wares. Silks, fabrics, and some novel goods from the far east. It was going to dock in port for a few days before heading out for Westeros for more trading. The guards and dockhands on duty watched as the ship hands moved their cargo from the ship onto the dock while the ship's captain spoke with the dockmaster and showed him his corresponding papers for the trade. Unbeknownst to the guards and dockmaster, the captain of this trade ship happened to be none other than Ser Davos Seaworth. Stannis and the ship he and Ser Davos took to Yunkai to check on William were already heading back to Westeros. Ser Davos was a skilled smuggler and his usual charm would help in their travel to Volantis. Any spies or outlooks would be more focused on Stannis and a Westerosi Royal Fleet ship heading back to Westeros while Ser Davos captained a simple trade ship and acted accordingly.
The dockmaster was going over the list of goods one last time when he noticed a peculiar odor. "What is that smell?" He asked.
"That would be the last thing on my list." Ser Davos walked over and removed the cover of a container holding what looked like some kind of meat. "Fermented crab."
"What?" The Dockmaster asked in confusion, finding the smell rather off putting.
"Fermented crab. A basket of this triples a brothel's earnings for the week. A little trick I picked up in the Summer Isles. A man thinks he's done. He's ready to go back to his loving family but before he gets his breeches up his lady of the hour puts a tiny spoon of that into his mouth. Five minutes later, he's back in the race." Ser Davos chuckled as he picked up a small pinch. "Here. Have a taste."
The Dockmaster put a small piece in his mouth and was taken back by the pungent and powerful taste. "It's…quite powerful."
"Aye, it is. I'd hurry to your favorite establishment or you'll poke a hole right through your clothes." Ser Davos quipped and the dockmaster chuckled.
Their little back and forth was funny and the Dockmaster signed everything clear and left the captain to his business while he left to the nearest brothel. Will was one of the crew, disguised with a dirty cloak/tunic, his face marred with some dirt and mud, and a hat on his head so no one recognized him and no one did. To everyone else he was just another ship hand. Will looked over at Ser Davos and the two exchanged a subtle look before he walked down the pier and into the city. He passed by other disguised members of his group. Ser Arthur Dayne, Hundred Eyes, Thoros of Myr, Beric Dondarrion, Smalljon Umber, Garlan Tyrell, Autolycus, Amphiaraus and Iolaus. Their disguises were subtle like his as either ship hands or traders with the ones dressed as traders able to carry the rucksacks that had their clothes. Thoros of Myr and Autolycus were disguised as traders and protected their one crate of wares which secretly hid their weapons. They would wait by the dock while one by one the rest walked down the pier and made their way through the city until they arrived at an inn called The Flaming Duck. It was nothing special and like any other inn on the street but this one was their meeting place. When Kinvara arrived in the city she sent back word that her followers managed to get in contact with Hercules and that when the prince arrived in Volantis he would meet one of her men there. Her contact would be wearing red robes of the Lord of light and would then take them to the safehouse they would use in the Volantis.
Will walked into the inn and saw about two dozen occupants. Some were soldiers of the Triarch while others were just travelers, merchants or other people who wanted a drink or something to eat. He saw a dark skinned woman with long black hair sitting at a table and preaching the words of the Lord of Light to the people around her. She was wearing red robes and a red necklace similar to Kinvara's, meaning she was a clergy of R'hllor and their contact. She saw him and continued to preach her words while he walked over to the counter and ordered a glass of cheap wine along with some cheese and bread before sitting down. The rest of his group soon entered and they went to the counter or sat around and blended in. Garlan walked over to the counter next to Will and ordered a mug of wine. The inn keeper poured him a cup and then placed a small plate of cheese and bread in front of Will before going to tend to the other patrons of his establishment.
"Our contact is here so why haven't we left? The cheese and wine can't be that good." Garlan whispered.
"We're sticking around a little to not draw attention. We arrived at an inn so it would look suspicious if we entered only to suddenly leave without at least staying and resting a bit." Will whispered back. "Those soldiers may be drinking but I don't want to risk putting them on alert. We'll stick around a bit and rest before we leave. Hopefully those soldiers leave before we do."
It could be looked at that the prince was being a little paranoid but it made some strategic sense. Seeing a group of people enter an inn only to suddenly leave without eating anything, getting a drink, or speaking to anyone would look odd and draw attention. They didn't want to draw any attention. Thankfully the prince's patience paid off as the soldiers finished up their drinks and had to get back to work so they walked out and tipped the inn maid who tended to them. Once they left the inn maids cleaned up before the inn keeper walked over and closed the door to the inn.
"My lord." The Red Priestess stood up and bowed and then everyone else in the inn who wasn't a part of Will's party did the same.
"It seems that Kinvara actually meant contacts." Beric Dondarrion remarked.
"My prince, I am Thessia. Lady Kinvara sends her regrets she could not be here to greet you in person. She meets with an important dignitary but has instructed us to provide any and all assistance possible. This inn and its occupants are trusted friends of the Lord of Light." The Red Priestess informed him. "Your compatriots are in the building just up the road in the back alley. You and your party will be safe there."
"Thank you. We have two more people with us and a crate with our weapons." Will told her so the Red Priestess motioned for one of her male followers to step forward.
"He will help you with the transport." She said so Will nodded to Beric and Garlan. They nodded back and left the inn with their help. "My lord, please. This way."
She led Will and the others through the inn and exited in the back alley where they took a walk through the narrow confines until they arrived at an modest two-story building. The priestess knocked on the door and a male Red Priest in training opened the door. He let them in and that's where Will and the others saw Hercules, Tydeus, and Atalanta. "About time you showed up." Hercules remarked.
"Had to sure we were safe." Will pointed out as he and Hercules shook hands. Everyone exchanged pleasantries and were glad to see that everyone was all right. "I know this was a lot to ask of you to do. Thank you, again."
"No thanks, required. We're more then happy to help work against slavers." Hercules replied. "Besides, we've had no issues. We've managed to blend in fine here."
"We've surveyed the area where the Triarchy will disembark from their barge. We know the route and in what order they'll arrive in." Atalanta added.
"You've been busy." Ser Arthur complimented.
"Helps that we've got information from an inside source." Hercules said.
"You have a spy with the Triarchy?" Will questioned.
"Not exactly. It'll be easier to explain later when Kinvara gets here." Hercules replied. "So, what exactly is the plan again?"
An hour later…
"You want to take the shot from here?" Hercules asked for clarification, thinking this was a jest. After they got settled and their gear safely stowed, they went out into the city still in their disguises and arrived at the building that Will planned to use. Kinvara and her agents confirmed that it was an empty, old building that was once belong to a bustling and wealthy trader years ago. He unfortunately got on the wrong side of a powerful slave owner with a connection to the Triarchy. Apparently things ended badly and the building has been abandoned ever since except for the occasional runaway slave or criminal trying to hide. That worked for them as it meant that the building wasn't owned and they had a less chance of being discovered.
Atalanta moved over to the window on the third floor that overlooked the area with the best line of sight on where the Triarchy would be. She reached into the pouch hanging off her hip and removed a small bronze tube with glass lenses on both ends. She unfolded it and looked through the small lens on one side while the larger lens on the other side was aimed at the thing she was looking at. She was using a Myrish lens tube or more commonly known as Myrish Eye, Far-Eye or just simply spyglasses. They increase your sight so you could see things far away with great clarity. Atalanta did some quick math in her head to check the distance and planning for that shot.
"175 yard shot. Visibility is good and I figured you practiced it but come the day you may need to adjust." Atalanta said to Will.
"I know. We'll just have to pray that the conditions tomorrow are good." Will replied.
"I know you're an excellent shot, your grace but two targets from this distance?" Hercules sounded unsure.
"It's the best option that minimizes any risk to us. With all the guards and soldiers with them I'd never get in close enough for a kill with my hidden blades before they have the chance to escape. Using any of the rooftops or buildings in the immediate area leads to a larger risk of being discovered and we'd never be able to make it past the gates before they're shut." Will explained. "I can make the shot."
"He did. He set up a mock target and landed two hits." Thoros stated.
"And with Cedric's help we have a little distraction created as well which should aid us in our escape." Ser Arthur added.
"If all goes according to plan tomorrow then no one will know we were even here. We slip out undetected and head back to the docks where we board a ship and leave." Will told them.
"Our endeavors tend to have a habit of going according to plan so it could work." Beric Dondarrion remarked. "Besides, after what the Triarchy tried to pull this is justice."
"Not to put doubt into your plan when we're so close your grace but what if in doing this Volantis tries to strike out against Westeros? We'd be inviting war to our homeland." Garlan Tyrell pointed out.
"You southern flowers. Even spending a year with us you still worry like women." Smalljon quipped when he saw Atalanta. "Beggin your pardon, my lady. I meant no offense."
"I would hope not. We know Atalanta could kill you easily." Will pointed out and everyone chuckled, including Smalljon and Atalanta. "You're right to worry, Garlan. And I'll admit the thought has crossed my mind but if all goes right then no one will know where the shot came from and by who. Unlike the Triarchy, we leave behind no evidence that we were here and no declaration. We do this, we leave. And Volantis can try as they might to retaliate which is why I've been steadily building up my armada. Not only to keep Slaver's Bay safe but as a deterrent. Volantis doesn't exactly have the best record in wars and their options are limited. The Golden Company is gone and gathering any and all sellswords left on Essos would probably take more gold then they'd be willing to part with. Let's not forget that when Volantis went to war during the reign of the Targaryens they were pushed back and ended up suing for peace. My dragon may be small but I have black powder and I know what to do with it."
"They could try other means. Choke off trade with Westeros." Beric Dondarrion pointed out.
"Which is why my uncle and Ser Davos have safeguarded and maintained security on Westerosi shipping lanes, prioritizing the Stepstones. I'm familiar with what happened between the Triarchy alliance of Myr, Lys, and Tyrosh and the headaches they brought to Westeros with the War for the Stepstones. Hopefully my actions will prevent the Volantene from trying something like that but if they do then I'm not going to be like King Viserys and ignore the problem." Will said and everyone liked the prince's thinking. His actions in Volantis may be for revenge but he was also wise enough to understand the possible reactions that may come up and planned accordingly.
"Perhaps there may be something that could help in maintaining a peace and preventing further conflict. Our source may be able to assist in that manner." Hercules suggested.
"How?" Hundred Eyes wondered.
"It'd be better said not here." Hercules said only further adding to the confusion. They left the building and made their way back to the safehouse, staying as inconspicuous as possible. When they made it back Kinvara was sitting at a table with a red cloaked figure.
"Your grace, I was told of your arrival. I believe there is someone you should meet." Kinvara said so the cloaked figure removed the hood to reveal Volantene man, dark skinned but with his hair and beard cut short. He was remarkably well kept, groomed and even though he was wearing the cloak they could see some very nice and expensive fabrics underneath.
"William the Conqueror. You were not what I was expecting to see." The man said.
"I'm sorry?" Will was confused as the man knew who he was but he didn't recognize him.
"Your grace, allow me the privilege of introducing you to Doniphos Paenymion, One of the Volantene Triarchy." Kinvara announced, instantly putting Will and his group on alert save for Hercules and his friends.
"I do not come for war, I come in peace." Doniphos assured everyone. "No one knows that I am here."
"Stand down." Will ordered and everyone in his party removed their hands from the daggers they were carrying. He then looked over at Hercules. "So, this is how you got all that information?"
"I told you we had help." Hercules pointed out.
"But how?" Ser Arthur asked.
"Malaqua Maegyr and Nyesso Vhassar may be too focused on the prince and the uproar from the slave masters to pay attention to what happens in Volantis but not I. Word has reached me, even in the Palace, of the rumors and tales being spun on the streets of Volantis. Especially by the Priests and Priestess of the Lord of Light. From what my servants had heard it seemed obvious that the Conqueror had the favor, if not the ear of the Lady Kinvara." Doniphos Paenymion said.
"The Lord's light grasp is vast. His followers made me aware of the Lord Paenymion's inquisition and desire to meet. And the sharing of a common goal." Kinvara added.
"Maegyr and Vhassar. I've heard through my own web of informants that they've been the most vocal in wanting my death…and that they were the ones who hired the Golden Company, assassins, and handed over the poison arrow." Will said and Doniphos nodded. "But not you?"
"If your informants are well trained then you must know that I differ from other Triarch members. My family did not make their wealth through slavery. I personally abhor it as I feel no man should have control over another like that but…it was made abundantly clear to me that it is a necessary evil. And I am but one man. Not all of us are blessed by the Gods as you are, Conqueror." Doniphos remarked.
"Is that what people are saying about me?" Will wondered.
"Considering you survived several attempts on your life and you know what, can you really blame them?" Ser Arthur pointed out.
"He's got a point." Hercules remarked.
"Fair enough." Will admitted. "Answer me this, Lord Paenymion. Why act against your fellow Triarch? By all means, turning us in might improve your standing with them and in this city yet you've reached out. Knowing full well what I intend to do but you have aided us. Why?"
"Maegyr and Vhassar are idiots but are well connected and powerful. If they had it there way then they'd start an open war and many of their followers long for it after your actions in Slaver's Bay. They're idiots but are up for reelection and have strong ties to the Tiger party. They want war and to reconquer Slaver's Bay, the three cities, and to kill you all. They do not have a high opinion of you, your grace." Doniphos told him.
"They're not the only ones." Will figured.
"Their party represents the aristocracy, warriors, and slave traders while mine, the noble party of the elephants are merchants, moneylenders, and traders. We know that war is bad for business and seek no further quarrel, especially against a prince with a powerful name, a strong armada, a loyal army and has proven his combat skills against the Second Sons and the Golden Company. No other mercenary group would dare go after the Conqueror with those odds. If Maegyr and Vhassar continue on their ways then it'll mean the end of Volantis, one way or another. That is something I do not want which is why I am here." Doniphos Paenymion said.
"I agree that I do not want a needless war. I came here just for Maegyr and Vhassar but how are you so sure that with their death that the conflict will end?" Will asked him.
"With them gone, I'll be the sole Triarch in command until two new ones are elected. Maegyr and Vhassar have been secured to run for reelection with the end of this new year and will use their collective power and influence to prevent my reelection in order to have someone else brought into the Triarchy who is more in line with their desires." Doniphos said.
"Someone who shares their view and want war." Will theorized and Doniphos nodded.
"If they were to be killed then the next two members of the Triarch would be elected at the end of the new year with the new election. In that time, it would give me the chance to help sway the leaders from attempting war. The Volantene are a suspicious lot and the prince's reputation already helps. Many of them fear him and it is because of their fear that Maegyr and Vhassar are able to twist them to their own ends. With them out of the way, I can take them away from the course of war. And High Priestess Kinvara's work and the work of the other priests in spreading the word of the Conqueror would help as well. With them gone, I can prevent all out war if the Conqueror is willing to leave Volantis alone." Doniphos Paenymion offered and everyone looked at the prince to see if he would take it. They waited for a response until William took a deep breath and stared at the Triarch.
"I didn't come here with the intention of sacking Volantis or sparking a war. I came here only to seek justice against the two men responsible for the attempt on my life. That I can assure you. Despite what rumors and slander may be said about me, I do not have intentions to conquer all of Essos. I did what I did in Slaver's Bay because I could not stand the actions of the Masters there." Will told him.
"And I agree. I was never fond of the Masters in Slaver's bay." Doniphos agreed.
"My work in Slaver's Bay has shown everyone that slavery is an archaic hallmark of the old Empire of Ghis that is long gone. I doubt I have the power or time to end all of slavery myself but perhaps my efforts may have done enough to spark a change. I seek no quarrel with Volantis that would lead to open war. I'm only here for two men. If my mission is successful and Volantis no longer seeks to recapture Slaver's Bay or interfere in the newly established protectorates, then you have my word as a Prince of the Seven Kingdoms that I will not seek out war with Volantis." Will held out his hand to solidify the promise.
Doniphos Paenymion looked down at his hand before taking a deep breath and shaking back. This act alone meant a great deal as the Triarch would never physically interact with anyone who wasn't of similar standing in Volantis political structure. The fact that he was willing to do that with a foreign prince meant a great deal. "Then I pray the gods grant you fortune tomorrow. And that we may stay allies in the future."
"As do I." William replied and the two shook hands with kind smiles on their faces.
"I best be returning to the Red Temple before my private time in quiet contemplation and prayer arises suspicion." Doniphos Paenymion said. "Keep careful watch on my garb tomorrow. Red will be what I will be wearing but if it is another color then that will mean something is wrong and for you to leave."
"Understood." Will replied.
"My followers will escort you back to the temple." Kinvara told him and he nodded. Paenymion put his hood back up to hide his identity and left with his escorts so he looked like just a regular red priest.
"You handled that very well, your grace." Ser Arthur praised. "Like a true prince or even King would."
"But do you think that was the best move, your grace? How are you so sure that he'll honor your agreement?" Beric Dondarrion questioned.
"He's got a point. How do we know this isn't a trap?" Smalljon Umber asked.
"One of my followers works in the Triarch Palace and is by Triarch Paenymion's side nearly the entirety of every day without his knowledge. We've not heard of any whisper that the other Triarchs are aware of the Prince's arrival in Volantis." Kinvara answered.
"And you heard him. He has all the more to gain if he works with us." Will said. "And he was telling the truth. I could see it in his face. We stick to the plan but be ready to go to the alternatives if we have to."
Everyone nodded and felt better with that. William never mentioned his backup plans or alternatives to the Paenymion so that gave them a slight advantage. In case something happened tomorrow they still had an advantage to play. "Just out of curiosity, when you did become such an expert judge of character that you can discern whether a person is lying or not?" Hercules wondered.
"It's simple. I grew up in King's Landing." He replied and earned some chuckles.
Line Break xxxxx
It was a beautiful day in Volantis with the sun shining high and a gentle breeze coming from the bay that did little to hide the stink of unwashed slaves and the usual stinks of a giant port city. Hercules was sat on a stool outside the building they were using for the assassination with a mug of wine in his hand, acting like someone who was just enjoying a drink. Tydeus, Autolycus, Atalanta were at a table outside an inn eating some food while Amphiaraus was sitting on the street acting like a beggar. Garlan Tyrell and Smalljon Umber then came up in a small horse drawn wagon with Hundred Eyes and Ser Arthur Dayne in the back along with some crates. The wagon pulled off to the side of the street and everyone disembarked with Thoros and Beric grabbing the crate while Hercules grabbed the other. Ser Arthur grabbed a bundle of furs hiding a wrapped package when he got off the wagon before they walked into the building, acting like traders.
Will was wearing a cloak and hat that covered his body and obscured his visage. He kept his head down and stumbled a bit, making it look like he was just a regular drunk. He entered the building where he saw everyone getting their weapons from the crate along with the long cloaks they would wear when they left. He removed the hat and took the cloak off to reveal he was wearing his regular clothes except the jacket he was wearing was red instead of blue. Thoros removed a bag from the crate and handed it to William as it contained his vambraces. Those along with his daggers were the only weapons he brought with him as he felt that his swords were too noticeable and if everything went right then he wouldn't need them. He fastened on his hidden blades, using his teeth to tighten the strings and then extended the blades to make sure both were working. After that he tested the newest addition to his hidden blades that Cedric had been working on since he first got his hand on the original and then made the double that the prince now wore. The Hidden Blade was already an impressive weapon and Cedric had enough time with it to study its design and mechanisms and then use that knowledge to replicate it and make a new one so William had two. Given the prince's speed, agility, and mobility, he was able to use the Hidden Blades as well as the assassin he took the original from. And Cedric's genius in studying the weapon as well as all the development that has come since allowed him to design something new.
William flicked his left wrist and the small central wheel on the vambrace spun causing two small wooden limbs to fold out. These two limbs were connected with a thin metal wire to an anchor point where a small metal bolt rested similar to a crossbow only much smaller, small enough to be fitted to the hidden blade bracer. Cedric called it the Phantom Blade, a ranged counterpart to the hidden blade similar to a crossbow that fired small bolts for quick, stealthy, and ranged kills. Granted its small size meant that its range was limited and its size meant you needed to aim for the neck, chest or head but it had its uses. (1)
"Cedric outdid himself with his work." Ser Arthur commented as Will turned the central wheel and the wooden limbs folded down and locked into place, allowing the Phantom Blade to remain inconspicuous on the Hidden Blade's Bracer.
"He did. I just hope I don't need to use it today." Will remarked and Ser Arthur nodded as he undid the bundle of furs and unrolled the parcel to reveal a bundle of arrow and William's Composite Recurve Bow. Hercules removed a single plank of wood from the wall that faced their target so it gave the prince a clean and unobstructed view while also minimizing risk of being seen. Even though they were about 175 yards away they could already see the army of soldiers who were standing in formation on the path that the Triarch would be taking and the citizens of Volantis they were keeping back. Standing guard by the docks where the barges would disembark were more soldiers and three elephants the Triarch would be placed on for their trip.
"Nothing yet. We're still in the clear." Hercules told them and everyone nodded.
Will strung his bow and pulled the string back to test and make sure it was working fine which it was. He grabbed his bundle of arrows and made his way over to his position and took out a spyglass to see his target area. "And now we wait."
A few hours later…
The blaring sound of trumpets and beating of drums was heard as the Triarchy's barge came down the Rhyone river. Each Triarch had their own barge which was customized and dressed with the finest silks and jewels while other barges followed holding musicians and soldiers. With their arrival, the soldiers stood at attention while the citizens of Volantis cheered and waved at their leaders with the slaves forced to do the same.
"There they are." Ser Arthur saw them arrive so the others got ready. Some had fallen asleep or were just sitting around but now all woke up and were alert. Will used his spyglass as did the others and they saw the barges float down the Rhyone river before stopping at the dock where they would disembark. A legion of slaves each carried a large Palanquin so big, ornate, and heavy just like you'd expect royalty to have. Similar to the ones in Westeros that carried royals or nobles only crafted to reflect the majesty the Triarchs wanted to show. The Palanquins would then take each Triarch to their own elephant for their march through the city.
"So far so good." Hercules said, looking through his spyglass and nothing seemed out of the ordinary. No excess of guards on alert or heading their way as the soldiers there were too focused on the citizens in front of them. They saw the Triarchs disembark their barges and were carried down the docks on their Palanquins. Everyone adjust their view and saw Doniphos Paenymion on the far side. He disembarked last, probably as an implied insult from the other two Triarchs who didn't like him. Though he was far away their spyglasses gave them a good enough look so they could see he was wearing his red garb, his signal to them that things were good and to proceed. "That's the signal."
"I see it." Will retracted his spyglass and put it away before picking up some dirt/sand from the floor and rubbing it on his hands. He made sure it was all over his hands and on his fingertips. The dirt/sand was to make sure that his hands were dry so he had an smooth and easy release from his bow string. The less impact he had with the string when releasing the smoother the flight of the arrow and the more accurate his shot would be. He was a master archer and marksman so he knew what he needed to do to make the perfect shot.
Atalanta watched the Triarchs being moved down the dock and then up onto their elephants with Triarch Maegyr getting on the first one, Vhassar on the second and Paenymion at the back on the last one. "First two elephants. Paenymion's on the last one." She told him.
"Got it." Will grabbed his bow, taking note of the nearby flags and banners on display for the parade. There was little to no movement from them which meant there was little to no significant wind. With a clear sky and shining sun there were no weather factors he needed to adjust his shot for. The musicians began playing as the animal tamers began guiding their elephants forward at a slow pace. The Triarchs waved at the people, gracing them with their presence while the citizens of Volantis waved back taking in the rare sight of seeing the Triarch out and about. He grabbed a razor sharp curved broadhead arrow and pulled it back on the drawstring to his anchor point by his mouth. Everyone watched the targets through their spyglasses while he took a deep breath and aimed his arrow. He was focused, dialed in, and ignoring everything else except for his target.
With one smooth exhale he released his arrow and shot it 175 yards away. It flew through the air and pierced Maegyr through his neck cleanly and so fast that it passed through and stuck into the side of a building. Maegyr sat on top of the saddle of his elephant and his body just sat there but he went wide-eyed, feeling something pierce his neck and he couldn't move or breath. Will quickly grabbed another arrow, pulled it back and adjusted his aim a bit before he released. This arrow flew through the air and hit Triarch Vhassar dead center in the chest and went through to the point where it struck the back of his seat and pinned him there. Vhassar gasped and held his chest in pain before his arms went slack while blood flowed from the wound.
"That's two. Nicely done." Ser Arthur praised as he and the others saw two hits.
The crowd and soldiers still had no idea what happened as the music the band played was so loud that it muffled any kind of sound the arrow made but some people noticed something. Their voices were muffled by the music and things continued on with no one the wiser until the jerking movement of the elephants ended up unseating Maegyr and his body fell off the animal. When his body hit the ground chaos erupted as the guards quickly covered him, Vhassar, and Paenymion. Several soldiers jumped up and protected Paenymion with one receiving an arrow through the back, seemingly protecting him from getting killed. When the soldier fell to the ground more jumped up and surrounded him.
"Why you shoot at Doniphos? Decided to kill all three?" Hercules wondered.
"To better sell it. If I stopped at two he would look suspicious but with three shots, it'll just seem as though the soldiers got to him in time. I had Kinvara send word to him after he left." William replied, wrapping his bow and arrows back up in the bundle of cloth and furs. "Send off the distraction. Let's go."
Garlan placed a wrapped clothed bundle near an adjacent window and used flint and steel to light the fuse before joining the others in leaving. Once the fuse burned down to the bundle it ignited a bundle of black powder sending it flying into the air over the river and exploding in a large display of multi-colored fireworks. A nice little distraction and the noise would draw any nearby soldiers to that area by the barges.
Ser Arthur, Hercules and Autolycus were the first out of the building and everything was still fine. The clamor and panic of what just happened had yet reached this area so it was time to head south to the docks and get out quickly while they still had a chance. The others came out and they all got on the horse drawn wagon with Garlan and Smalljon up front. The horse began trotting away down the street and things were still going fine until they heard the distant ringing of the alarm bells going off which meant it wouldn't be much longer until the whole city was on alert.
They kept going until they stopped as the street was getting too narrow for the wagon so they all got off. Will jumped out of the back and saw a father and son moving crates from their shop onto a small cart pulled by a donkey. The father and son looked at him which is when Will tossed them a small bag of coin. "The wagon and horse are yours." He told in High Valyrian before he walked away. The father and son watched him leave in confusion before smiling at their stroke of luck.
Will walked at the head of the group down the street with Smalljon Umber, Autolycus, and Hundred Eyes with him. They turned a corner which is where they saw several Volantis guards accosting some civilians and searching them, likely acting in response to the alarm bells going off. Will and the three tried to keep walking and continue moving, hoping to avoid being seen but were then stopped and searched. Hercules, Atalanta, Tydeus, Garlan Tyrell, and Ser Arthur Dayne turned the corner but quickly backed behind it, waiting for the moment to move in.
The guards searched Will, Hundred Eyes, and Autolycus as Smalljon reached for his sword hidden by his cloak when he was turned around and searched with the guard seeing the weapon. "SWORD!" He shouted in Valyrian so Smalljon Umber punched him in the face and then unsheathed his dagger, slicing his throat.
Will punched his guard in the face and stabbed him in the neck with his hidden blade before using the Phantom Blade and shooting another guard in the neck with a bolt. Autolycus threw three daggers and killed two guards while Hundred Eyes disarmed his guard and then killed him with a throat jab. Two more guards turned to attack him when they heard a whistle behind them. They turned and were killed with knives to the stomach by Garlan Tyrell and Ser Arthur Dayne. Atalanta saw two guards coming down an alley so she shot them both with arrows while Tydeus rushed forward and kicked the last guard to the ground before cleaving his axe into his chest.
"Let's go!" Will shouted and they took off running to the river. A group of guards nearby heard the commotion and chased after them only for Ser Arthur Dayne to take out a smoke bomb and use a nearby fire pit to light the fuse before tossing it behind him. The bomb blew up into a loud plume of thick smoke that forced the guards to a stop as it was hard to breath and see. That distraction gave them time to lose their pursuers through the narrow alleys until they arrived near the river where they saw Thoros and Beric Dondarrion waiting at the boat they would ride down the river to the trade ship and their way out. That's when Will stopped them as he saw a large group of guards come in from the east and begin halting all boats and checking all occupants. Another group came in from the west and did the same.
"Shit…" Ser Arthur cursed seeing that their plan ran into a snag.
"That's not good." Hercules muttered as they were now effectively trapped. The guards were searching everyone and all boats. Anyone who had weapons was immediately detained. Even if they got onto the boat and tried to row away they'd be chased and risk leading them to the ship. If they tried to fight then they'd risk bringing more guards and getting trapped.
"We've got to go before more show up." Garlan Tyrell said.
"Only one way to do that. Give them a target to chase." William reloaded the bolt of his Phantom Blade. "Plan B."
"Oh, I hate Plan B." Ser Arthur remarked as he was handed the wrapped bundle holding Will's bow and arrows.
"I know but this is better. I don't need you slowing me down. Just be sure to be there to pick me up." Will whispered before he pulled up his hood to cover his head and then pulled his mask up to cover part of his face. Once his identity was concealed he walked away and joined the foot traffic.
A group of soldiers stopped some people on the street and checked their person but it was just a master and his body slaves. That's when one of them saw a red hooded figure walk by. "Hey, you! Stop!" The soldier said in Low Valyrian as he walked over and got in his way. "Hands up!"
The soldier raised his sword, threatening the man to raise his arms so he did when he suddenly swiped across the man and a splatter of blood hit the ground. Some of the soldiers nearby looked over and saw one of their own turn around and hold his hand to his throat, blood gushing through his fingers from a cut to his neck and he fell to the ground where they saw a red hooded figure with a blade extended from his wrist. "Seize him! Rip him apart!" The captain shouted so four of his men charged brazenly only making Will smirk.
Will ran forward and jumped off a nearby stone bench. He landed on one of the soldiers, knocking him to the ground. He disarmed him of his sword and punched him in the face and then the throat before getting off. The second soldier came at him with a knife but Will grabbed his arms and wrestled with him for control before bringing his arms down so he stabbed the man in the stomach. He dropped to the ground as a third tried to kill Will with a spear. He sidestepped the lunge, grabbed the spear shaft, and punched the soldier in the face. He kicked him in the stomach and yanked the spear out of his hand, spinning it around and then stabbing him through the stomach before he turned and threw the weapon, spearing the fourth soldier through the chest before he had a chance to attack.
Seeing how easily four of his men were taken down the Captain started to get nervous. "You idiots! GET HIM!" He shouted, pushing his last two remaining low-level grunts forward but they were nervous. They saw how easily their four compatriots were killed or taken down but had a job to do so one of them drew his sword and made a valiant but feeble attempt. He marched forward and raised his sword up only for Will to extend his arm and use the Phantom Blade to shoot the man in the neck. The man fell to the ground as the second came at Will with a sword cut but he leaned back to dodge. He grabbed the soldier by the belt and threw him to the ground before jumping off the dead soldier and into the air. The captain hastily tried to unsheathe his sword but was too slow as Will extended his hidden blade and jammed it into the captain's neck when he landed on him. He removed his blade and closed the captain's dead eyes as another patrol of guards arrive so he ran with them and every other guard in the area running after him.
"Move." Ser Arthur Dayne and the others quickly walked through the street and over to the boats now that all the guards were gone. Every single one of them chased after the red hooded assassin so Will's distraction plan actually worked. They walked quickly instead of running to avoid any unwanted attention but they weren't the only ones as there were many people quickly leaving the area after what just happened. Thoros and Beric Dondarrion ushered everyone into the boat and pushed off from the docks.
"What happened?" Thoros questioned.
"Plan B." Smalljon answered.
"I hate Plan B." Beric Dondarrion answered.
"So do I. Hurry." Ser Arthur Dayne told them.
"Right." Beric and Thoros rowed away with oars from the front while Hercules and Smalljon rowed from the back and they began heading south to the port.
Will turned the corner and ran down the street, narrowly missing a woman holding a jug on the top of her head. The guards and soldiers chasing him weren't as courteous and just pushed her to the ground. Some people on the street were cursing at the red hooded figure for nearly running them over but then they quickly got out of the way from the hunting pack of soldiers chasing after him. Will slid under a large horse drawn cart on the road while the guards ending up running into and then had to run around it. After running through a narrow zig-zag alleyway he arrived onto a larger street and stopped to see where he was going. Once he got his bearings he saw more soldiers appear so he resumed running.
The soldiers continued chasing after Will but they were too slow and he was too agile. He did a speed vault over a crate and then a dive roll over a spice table before turning the corner into a narrow alleyway leading to a small canal. He then jumped from the street onto an empty boat. He jumped from boat to boat before leaping up onto a wooden bricolla or a pile of wooden beams used to mark the navigable channels through the canals. He jumped from pole to pole in the canal before doing a big jump and grabbing onto the bottom of an archway of a bridge. The soldiers weren't able to follow him over the water so they hastily made their way the long way around while Will pulled himself up onto the bridge much to the shock and amazement of the bystanders. He took another moment for a quick breather and see where he was but once he did he resumed running. Another patrol of soldiers was quick to join the chase and ran after him.
Will took a turn down a street and saw a soldier running at him from the opposite direction so he ran close to the wall and up the small flight of stairs to a house. He then leapt onto the wooden railing of the stairs and jumped off just in time to avoid getting a sword to the foot. He managed to grab onto a brick sticking out of the wall and climbed up to the roof. The soldiers scrambled around the building on the street and saw Will up on the top. He was jumping from building to building so the soldiers had to chase him from the ground. They caught a break as the building he just jumped onto led into a large open courtyard. Instead of stopping, Will just jumped off. A soldier down on the ground ended up getting squished as Will landed and killed him with a hidden blade to the throat. Will pushed off and kept running when he stopped at a dead end in front of very large, closed doors. He took several deep breaths and turned around to see three dozen soldiers with their swords or spears ready, keeping him trapped between them and the closed doors of some kind of temple. They had him trapped like a rat, yet Will didn't look worried at all.
The bell on the top of the temple rung and the massive doors opened, letting out a congregation of Red Priests, Red Priestesses, and their followers all of whom were wearing red colored garb in reverence to the Lord of Light. The place he had arrived in ended up being the Temple of the Lord of Light. They walked around Will without much care as they were too focused and still in silence after their recent congregation while he let them past him. Soon enough his figure was obscured by the literal sea of red garbed followers of R'hllor as the soldiers did their best to move past or part the followers to get their assassin but he had vanished. It was a literal sea of priests along with the freedmen who were inside for the service and when they exited the nearby slaves gathered to hopefully see the high priest speak. The soldiers tried to past through the sea of people and find the assassin but he was long gone by now. Up top on a nearby building, the same Golden Crown Eagle from yesterday was perched up. It was Orys who watched the soldiers down below waste their time before he let out a sharp caw and fly away.
Ser Arthur and the others were still on their boat, having rowed a few miles down the Rhyone river to the port where their ship was docked. Ser Davos knew the plan, so he likely had the ship ready to leave the second they arrived. Everyone on the boat kept a close eye open for anything suspicious and thankfully they had gone south fast enough that the soldiers hadn't yet began locking down this part of the city yet but that could quickly change. That's when Hundred Eyes perked up as he heard the distinct caw of the Prince's eagle. The others did to and looked up to see Orys fly over them before tilting slowly to the left and landing nearby on a wooden post by a small wooden dock on the river for small boats. There sitting on a wooden barrel was Will, wearing an ugly brown coat and hat, waiting for them so they rowed the boat over. When they were close enough Will jumped into the boat so they didn't have to stop.
"What took you so long?" Will quipped and they just shook their head in amusement.
"Nice coat." Ser Arthur Dayne remarked.
"Picked it and the hat up to blend in." William answered, having dumped his jacket into a fire pit so it was likely being burned to crisp. "Plan went perfectly. They're still probably trying to find me near the temple."
"Then let's get out of here before they lockdown the city." Thoros suggested as they sped up the rowing.
Ser Davos walked on the deck of his ship to make sure that everything was as it should be while the ship hands got the vessel ready to leave. They had everything they needed and were still playing the role of just a regular trading ship with no one working at the port seeing anything wrong. Ser Davos checked on the main mast rigging when he heard an eagle cry and saw Orys fly down onto the beam of the main mast. He turned his head and saw the last members of the crew come aboard the ship. It was the prince and everyone in his party, all of whom were safe and sound. Will looked at Ser Davos and gave him a smile and nod.
"All right, gentlemen! Let's get this ship out to sea!" Ser Davos shouted and the men were quick to move. They pulled up the ramp to the dock, lifted up the anchor, and unfurled the sails as the ship began the slow exit of Volantis ports and out into open water back to Slaver's Bay.
Soon enough word had spread throughout the entire city of the assassination attempt on the Triarch. Malaqua Maegyr and Nyessos Vhassar were killed with Doniphos Paenymion barely escaping death thanks to the sacrifice of some noble soldiers protecting him. At first, many of the Volantene nobles were in disbelief that this had happened. The Triarch were seen as so elevated and above that the thought of them being killed seemed outlandish and impossible. Certain faiths were calling the assassination a sign from the gods that Triarch Maegyr and Vhassar had angered them and were struck down as a result. Paenymion was spared and as such was looked up to as being righteous or divinely protected which would greatly improve his standing with the city. And it helped that the Red Priests and Priestesses of R'hllor helped in their sermons.
There were no witnesses or answer as to who was responsible although many soldiers spoke of a red cloaked assassin who was able to outrun the soldiers of Volantis and vanished. The city was put on lockdown to try and find him but they never would. Some thought it might be a Faceless man and those that thought that assumed it was William the Conqueror who hired him but that was dubious. It made sense but distance archery kills weren't the namesake of the Faceless men and given the assassin made a spectacle of running through the city, it added credence to the fact that it may not be one of them. They would never do such a thing to draw attention as they would never have even been seen. And the Faceless man would have finished the attempt and made sure all three Triarchs were killed.
Some suspected that since the assassin wore red and vanished at the Red Temple that the Faith of the Lord of Light was behind the attack. High Priest Benerro of R'hllor denounced those allegations as did all the other priests and priestess including Kinvara which was true. They weren't behind the assassination and had no idea why that assassin was there or where he vanished to. They even allowed the soldiers to search their main temple and found no evidence. No one had seen the assassin since the temple. It was like he vanished away like smoke. A few of the friends of Malaqua and Vhassar still felt that the Red Temple aided in the assassination, but they no longer had the political backing to do anything and even if they did then that would be a very complicated endeavor. The R'hllor religion was popular in Volantis, even among the freemen and Volantene nobility which had been an issue for years as it meant that they couldn't act against them or else they'd whip most of the city into a frenzy.
People would discuss what happened for many moons with no one knowing the truth and those that did would never let the secret slip. And the man responsible was long gone and out of reach of Volantis.
Line Break xxxxx
After a long trip on the sea, the trade ship finally pulled into port in Meereen, joining the other trade ships there to do business. One of the dockworkers guided the ship over to one of the available docks using flags to signal him over and when the ship arrived they secured it with ropes and then dropped the anchor. The ramp was placed onto the deck of the ship so the ship hands could disembark with the crates of goods they had onboard. Will, still in disguised, disembarked the ship carrying a small crate of supplies and brought it onto the dock. The rest of the group did the same, still blending in and once everything was unloaded and the crew of the ship went their separate ways, Will and the others made their way back to the main pyramid.
Since Will was still in disguise he was able to get a better look and feel as to how Meereen was doing and things seemed peaceful and pleasant. The city was busy with activity and most if not all of it was good. People were out and about going to the markets to buy goods and foods while merchants haggled or attracted buyers for their wares. There were some kids running about and playing in the larger streets or courtyards as the days lessons at the Meereenese schools were over. Masons and craftsman were busy with their trades while performers, minstrels, and entertainers drew in small groups of bystanders earning laughs and cheers along with some coin. Taverns and inns were busy as were the brothels. Some of the newly trained members of the Meereenese City Watch were standing guard or on patrols throughout the city while the Unsullied assisted. One thing Will did notice was that things between the people were better, at least on the surface. He saw two couples having some casual and polite conversation near a stall and they all laughed after a funny story or joke. The exchange seemed insignificant on the surface but not to Will. He knew that one couple used to be former slaves while the other were regular citizens of Meereen. Despite their pasts they were able to come to terms in the present and move forward to a better future. It sounded sentimental, perhaps a bit naïve, and childish but it made him smile to see things changing for the better. It also helped that Will worked overtime on ridding the former slaves of their rags and giving them better clothing like he did in Astapor and Yunkai. He had learned that appearance and clothing often are the first judgements a person will make so getting the slaves out of their rags and into new clothing helped shed their visage as former slaves and into their new ones as free citizens of Meereen. Helped that the former masters had plenty of clothing left around and he paid plenty of seamstresses and tailors for new clothing to be made. That and the influx of trade was useful as well.
More trade ships were coming to the harbor in Meereen dropping off goods from other parts of Essos to as fast west as Westeros and east to the Jade Sea and the cities there like Yi Ti. Those exotic goods fetched good prices in Essos and Westeros. On top of the ships coming into the harbor there were the trade caravans coming in and out of the main gate of from Yunkai and Astapor. The expanded farmland and small towns outside of Meereen were built with large fences for protection and people were happily moved in to work and live. They were close enough to the city for work and to be protected but far enough for some peace and quiet. And the crops had been planted but would take some time before they could be sold or traded. Sheep farming and such was underway though, so furs were being traded. Along with the furs were the iron, cooper, and gold deposits mined from the Skahazadhan river. They also found a sapphire and emerald vein, but it still needed to be excavated and mined. All three former slave cities of Slaver's Bay now had a new claim to fame that made them more prosperous. Astapor was now a city of fine gems and artists, Yunkai was a desert oasis with a large and interconnected series of aqueducts and canals providing a fresh and continuous supply of water for crops, and Meereen was a city of steel, cooper, and gold. On top of their new exports or specialties each of the city had a thriving port for ships and trade. The stark difference between these cities now compared to years ago was drastic and likely no one wanted things to go back to the way they were before. William's long and strenuous work in developing these cities had paid off.
That didn't mean there were still some dissenters but those were mainly people who still felt they were above the slaves given their newfound freedom or didn't like outsiders in their city. Luckily those numbers were miniscule and with the Sons of the Harpy taken care of Will had taken care of any major force that posed a threat to him and his work. And by taking them out before they could make a move against him or Meereen then he took down a dangerous group of adversaries before they had a chance to gather more allies. Still, he had learned enough at this point to know to never discount any potential threats or become complacent, so he had his spies on the lookout for any kind of resurgence from the Harpies.
Inside one of the training courtyards of the great pyramid of Meereen Edric and Gendry were in the middle of a sparring session against Tyene, Nymeria, and Obara Sand with practice weapons. Oberyn was standing off the to side, monitoring the spar while Ellaria was seated a table sipping a glass of wine. Cedric and Missandei were at the table as well and watched the unfortunately one-sided fight. Edric and Gendry had grown by leaps and bounds compared to when they first started and their prowess with the trident and Warhammer respectively had gotten better but against the three Sand Snakes, their skills still needed some fine tuning. That's what the spar was for.
The others watched as the Edric and Gendry fought together against their three opponents valiantly. They covered each other's backs and worked together in unison. Nymeria's whip was the added factor that made the spar difficult as she used it to trap their limbs or pull them off balance leaving them open to attacks. Tyene's daggers tested their defense at close range and forced them to keep her at a distance but then Obara would keep them from pressing their attacks with her spear.
"Remember, Edric. Keep the body fluid and moving. Don't stand too rigid like a knight in heavy armor. Your thrusts are sharp and precise, but you move your weapon and your body with fluidity. You aren't a pikeman in an army where you will wait for the enemy to charge at you. Know your distance. Your spear gives you range but you must use it wisely. Like a snake you mustn't stand there still like a rock." Oberyn instructed as Edric listened during the fight when Nymeria lashed her whip around his left ankle and pulled. He fell to the ground and Obara placed her spear at his neck. "Or that will happen."
Gendry used the shaft of his sparring axe to block Tyene's daggers and was doing well when she ducked under his cut to her head and swept out of his legs from under him. He landed on his back and groaned in pain. "We win again." Tyene smirked before she helped Gendry up.
"Nicely done." Gendry praised her as they took a small break.
"Your brother taught me that. He showed me some tricks of his and I used some tricks of mine on him to great success. More then once." Tyene quipped.
"Will's unbeaten in battle. What kind of skills…" Edric stopped himself when he realized what she meant. "…Ah, never mind."
"I'm sure your tricks were amusing but a real lover does not require such tricks." Nymeria corrected her and the two siblings glared at once another. "I know that when the prince returns and when he crawls into bed it'll be me, he'll want beside him."
"I don't think so." Tyene countered.
"You are cute and got the prince out of his shell, but I believe I left a memorable impression on the prince and an enticing offer for him when he returns. Face it, little sister. I've always been better." Nymeria gave her a playful kiss and the two were about to fight when Oberyn got in their way to stop them.
"Easy, daughters. I think the prince is man enough to handle the both of you and considering how he trains and fights he'll have more than enough endurance for such an endeavor." Oberyn told them only for Nymeria to stick her tongue at Tyene. So, Tyene pulled her hair in response. That resulted in them reaching out for one another, but Oberyn kept them separated and from using weapons.
"Are they always like this?" Edric asked Obara as she watched her two squalling sisters.
"Pretty much." She answered.
"Glad to know things are the same as we left them."
They heard and turned around to see William walk into the courtyard. They were happy to see he was safe and sound. Ser Arthur, Hercules, and the others flanked his arrival and entered the courtyard. This gave everyone relief in the sight that those that left for Volantis all returned. Gendry and Edric rushed over and hugged their brother, and he hugged back. "Thank the gods you're all right." Gendry said to him.
"We were worried." Edric added.
"Trust me. You'll not be rid of me that easily." Will assured them while also ruffling their hair a bit. "Glad to see you all have been keeping busy."
"I take it that things went well in Volantis." Oberyn suggested as he walked over and shook hands with the prince.
"That it did. There was a slight complication in getting back to the ship, but it was handled. And they don't even know we were there." Will smirked as Tyene walked over and pulled him in for a kiss. She was aggressive and forced her tongue against his which he responded in kind, kissing her back and finally pulling back for air. "Guess I was dearly missed. Hello to you, Tyene."
"Hello, my prince." Tyene smiled but glanced over at Nymeria and gave her wink.
"Easy, girls. The prince has just traveled a long way so perhaps it's best we do not crowd him." Cedric told them. Tyene gave Will another kiss on the cheek as Cedric came over and hugged him.
"Any trouble why I was gone?" Will asked.
"None. The city has been joyous, peaceful and busy. Your labors have born fruit." Cedric told him.
"Our labors. Hopefully now things will be easier." He hoped.
"When has things ever been easy for us?" Ser Arthur questioned, and the prince had to concede that point.
"Well, maybe quiet was the word I was looking for. We should gather everyone together so we can discuss matters that need our attention." Will said.
"That can be saved for tomorrow, your grace. The city is fine, and I've kept on top of our correspondence with Yunkai and Astapor. Nothing to worry about." Cedric assured him. "You and the others have had a long journey so any and all discussion or planning can wait until tomorrow."
Will knew he was right, and the others deserved it, so he took a deep breath to relax his mind. "You're right." He turned around to look at the men who joined him on his journey to Volantis. "Thank you, all of you for coming with me. We were successful but you knew going in that things could have ended differently, and I can't thank you enough for being by my side. I'm honored."
"The honor is ours." Ser Arthur said as he and everyone bowed their heads.
"Thank you, again. This will not be forgotten. Now, do as Cedric suggests and get some rest. You've earned it." William told them and they all smiled. He then removed a pouch of coins and tossed it over to Hercules. "Drinks are on me."
"Well, if you insist." Autolycus took the pouch and led the others to get some well-deserved drinks while Will walked into the pyramid. Cedric accompanied him just so the two could talk and Missandei followed.
Tyene and Nymeria looked at one another before going to follow when Oberyn stopped them. "I believe you two can meet with the prince tomorrow. I think someone else desires him tonight." Oberyn told them and glancing at Missandei before she turned the corner and left. The two girls nodded and left to get cleaned up with Obara, Oberyn, and Ellaria following leaving just Gendry and Edric as the last two in the courtyard.
"Well, I guess we get the night off." Gendry remarked and both were ok with that.
William walked into his room and placed his bag, bow and arrows onto a table when he saw Orys fly in through the window and land on his post. He walked over and scratched him under the beak and the eagle let out a happy cry. He then opened Durran's cage and pet the dragon on the head. The dragon was happy to see him again. "Has he been behaving himself?" Will wondered.
"Oh, yes. Very well. Eats regularly and Missandei, Gendry, or Edric look after him if I can't." Cedric assured him. "I'm glad you're all right, your grace."
"As am I, Cedric. Malaqua and Vhassar are dead, and we may have gained a new ally in Volantis, but time will tell if that is only temporary." He replied.
"Well, you've befriended enemies before, and they've remained trusted allies so perhaps the same is true this time as well." Cedric suggested as Will removed his daggers from his belt and some items from his belt when he activated the Phantom Blade.
"This worked really well." Will praised and Cedric smiled as he helped him remove the bracers.
"I'm glad. An elegant design in anyone else's hands wouldn't be as effective as in yours. Come. Go take a bath and get clean. You reek." Cedric grabbed him some fresh clothes and ushered him to the bath.
"We'll I've been on a ship for a while." William replied as he walked down the hall to the bath. While he did that and got clean, Cedric carefully placed Durran into his cage and took him to his room tonight so the prince could be…unencumbered.
An hour later…
Will walked down the hall in a fresh pair of trousers and a light and airy tunic as he dried his hair with a towel. Cedric was right about the bath. It was relaxing and exactly what he needed to feel better. He dried some of the water still in his hair as he walked into his room where he saw Missandei waiting for him. She was wearing a very lovely blue dress with a brown belt.
"Missandei? What are you doing here? You should be getting some rest like the others." He told her.
"I am well rested, your grace. I came to see if there was anything you required?" She wondered.
"No, I'm fine. Missandei. No injuries and that bath was exactly what I needed." He assured her and she smiled. She walked over and poured him a cup of water which is when he noticed the tray on his table that wasn't there before. It had two jugs and two small glasses, one of which Missandei was filling with water. He also noticed Durran's cage was gone and Orys was nowhere to be seen. He finished his observations just as Missandei came over with a cup of water. "Thank you."
"You're welcome, your grace. And I'm glad you are unharmed. Many of us were nervous when you left for Volantis." Missandei told him. "Me, in particular."
"The others probably don't this, but I was nervous as well." He admitted. "Even after everything I've been through, I'm not immune to nerves."
Missandei chuckled a bit. "Forgive me, your grace. I meant no offense."
"None taken." He assured her. "Despite the way I present myself I am not the infallible warrior god people think I must be. I'm just like the rest of them. I bleed, I still get nervous, and I still know fear."
"You may be a man but you're one of the bravest, strongest, and kindest man I've ever come to know." Missandei complimented him and Will smiled. "If all men were like you then I believe the world would be a perfect place."
"Well, if there were more men like them then I wouldn't feel as special then, wouldn't I?" Will quipped and Missandei chuckled. "And if there were others out there like me then my path through life might have been different…and we wouldn't have met. But I'm glad we did."
"As am I, your grace." Missandei replied.
"I mean it, Missandei. I truly am glad that we met. Do not let anyone think that you are any less important in my close circle of advisors, confidantes and friends. I truly do cherish our relationship. Without you my work here wouldn't have amounted to as much as it has now." He praised. "And when I go back to Westeros, I know that you will be just as invaluable there as you are here."
"It would be my honor, your grace—"
"William, Missandei." He told her. "We've known each other long enough for you to use my name."
"William. Whatever path your journey takes you…I will be there to help however I can." She said and he smiled. She walked up to him, and he could see the nervousness in her face before she leaned in, so he leaned in as well and they met in the middle with a passionate kiss. The feeling of their lips touching was like lightning in a bottle. Missandei kissed him back as Will reached his hands and caressed her neck and face when she grabbed his hands and pulled away. For a moment, William was concerned if he may have pushed Missandei into something she didn't want and was forcing himself on her. She did look nervous as she lowered his hands and took a step back but then reached up and undid the strap around her neck holding her dress up. She let it slip down her shoulder and off her body until it pooled up around her ankles, giving William a complete and unobstructed view of her beauty and was mesmerized.
Missandei stepped forward and lifted the tunic up with Will helping her take it off and he dropped it to the side. Even though she had seen him without a shirt before she still marveled at his form. Chiseled and defined muscles that came from years of training and hard work but had the occasional scar or mark from the myriad of battles he had been in. He was the epitome of the perfect male form and there was no doubt that he was an enticing vision that would make maidens swoon and men envious. She brought one of her hands up onto his chest so she could feel his firm muscles. She could feel his goosebumps, the involuntary shiver he suppressed as she slid her hand over his skin and the beating of his heart kicked up a bit. Missandei then moved her hand down to his trousers and undid the string before pulling them to down. Will then took her by the hand and pulled her in close for a gentle kiss. Missandei kissed back, moving her hands up his side and across his shoulders until she reached his face. She pulled away and then kissed him on the cheek before she took his hand and led him to the bed. She laid down on the furs with Will hovering over her.
She was prepared for Will to just get started and thrust his manhood into her. She was mentally prepared for that but then to her surprise, he continued to kiss her and gently ran his hands down her arms. After a few more tender kisses were shared he began going lower, planting soft kisses on her neck while his hands caressed her sides and breasts. Missandei let out a sharp gasp and moan as moved his kisses from her neck down to her chest and her stomach. Missandei was lost for words at what she was feeling but it was euphoric. Hearing from Tyene and Nymeria about their various romps with the prince did make her feel a little jealous and curious as to how it must have felt. They said that William was as forceful and domineering as he was loving and passionate. Oberyn called it the perfect dichotomy in a lover as they could be loving and make your heart soar one moment while the next, they could be dominating you like an animal.
William continued kissing Missandei all over until he was eye level with her maidenhood and dove in. Missandei couldn't help herself as a sharp gasp escaped her mouth and she clutched the sheets and bed beneath her tight, moaning as she felt the prince use his talented tongue. Her moans and gasps of pleasure seemed to be the encouragement that spurred him on to bring nothing but pleasure to his lover. It felt like magic trailed over her body and soon it reached its peak. She arched her back and let out the loudest moan from her mouth as she felt an eruption of pleasure wash over her like a wave from the ocean. Missandei panted for air as Will crawled up and kissed her. She kissed back and hoping this moment wouldn't end too soon. Thankfully, it didn't.
Several hours later…
The moon was high in the night sky, illuminating Meereen and its harbor. The faint light of the moon flowed into the open balcony of the prince's chambers where the drapes bellowed from the night breeze while the sound of passionate love making could be heard along with the ruffle and thumping coming from the bed. William was lying on the bed with Missandei bouncing up and down on his crotch as they were one. Both let out gasps and moans of pleasure as Will's hands traveled up Missandei's thighs and onto her hips when her entire body shivered in delight and fell forward only to place her hands on the prince's chest to catch herself. Their bodies were caked in sweat from the hours spent together but it was time well spent for both. William leaned up and latched onto one of her breasts, kissing and sucking it like he was a baby while his other hand caressed her sweat-caked back and ass. Missandei couldn't control the moans escaping from her mouth as William upped his thrusting into her like there was no tomorrow. Missandei was lost in ecstasy as her arms wrapped around his shoulders, her face in the crook of his neck as she trembled. She dragged her nails down his shoulders as her eyes rolled back and very unladylike screams left her lips. Will moved his head from her chest and silenced Missandei's screams and moans with a kiss as their tongues wrestled with one another. His thrusts increased in speed as he reached his crescendo and they reached their ultimate release. Both had lost count of the number of times the other had finished but all of them were enjoyable.
Will held Missandei close to him as did she, their breathing heavy and ragged, sweat trickling down their body and Missandei would definitely need to drink some moon tea in the morning, but both felt amazing if tired. He leaned back and laid down on the bed, bringing Missandei with him and holding her close to his body. He could feel her sweaty breasts pressed up against his chest and her sharp huffs of breath hitting his neck. "Are you all right…" He managed to utter in between his heavy breathing.
"Yes..." Missandei uttered.
"How do you feel?" He asked, holding her close and gingerly running his hand down her side.
"Incredible…" Missandei replied, taking a deep breath as she moved some hair out of her face before leaning down for a final kiss.
"Both of us need a good night's sleep. Rest here tonight." He whispered and she nodded, leaning into his body as the two got comfortable on the bed and slowly drifted into a pleasant sleep.
The next morning…
Missandei's internal alarm clock woke her up at first light like she normally would but was momentarily confused as to where she was and what happened. Her body was sore, she felt sweat caked to her skin, and an arm wrapped around her stomach. She was lying on her side and felt someone hugging her from behind but then remembered what happened last night and smiled. It was one of the best nights she could have imagined. She turned her head and saw the prince was still asleep so she cautiously moved his arm from her stomach so she could get up. She managed to remove it and sit up on the bed but before she could rise to her feet, she felt herself pulled back into the bed and into William's arms.
"It's still early. You can rest a bit longer." He whispered.
"William. After last night, you've more than earned the right to call me by my name when we're in private." He told her.
"William. I should arise and get dressed." She told him.
"But what if I would rather have you with me in bed for a little longer? As a prince I could command you, but I'd rather have you stay of your volition." He hoped and she smiled before relaxing into his hold.
"Then perhaps resting a little bit longer is fine." She said and he smiled, pulling her in close and kissing her on the head as the two closed their eyes and slept a little longer. They slept for about two hours longer and when they awoke, they both took a bath to clean the dry sweat and other fluids from their body. Will got out of the bath, dripping wet as he wrapped a towel around his waist. Missandei had gotten out ahead of him and was already dry and dressed in a blue leather crop top that wrapped over her shoulders and a long flowing floor-length skirt that showed off her stomach. "I'll have breakfast prepared and brought to your chambers."
"Actually, Missandei change of plans. Have breakfast made for everyone and put in the meeting room. And if you could have the Unsullied send word to the others for them to meet me there. I think a good breakfast for our discussion would be nice." He said as she nodded.
"Yes, your grac—William." Missandei bowed her head and walked away when Will grabbed her hand and spun her around. He pulled her in close and kissed her. Missandei was caught by surprise but kissed back. A few seconds passed and they pulled apart with Will tracing his finger against her cheek.
"Please know that last night was incredible. You mean a great deal to me. And if it pleases you…I would hope to see you again, Missandei." He whispered and she smiled, giving a quick kiss on the lips.
"It would please me. Until next time, your grace." Missandei gave him one last kiss before walking away. She couldn't help but keep the smile on her face as she left. The prince enjoyed their time together and didn't want it to be just a one-night occurrence which meant he truly cared about her. She believed that was the case but hearing him say it just reaffirmed it. She left the bath while William finished drying off. He flung the towel over his shoulder as he pulled up his trousers before sitting down to put on his boots. Once his boots were on, he made sure both his daggers were secure.
"So, you've taken a new lover?" He heard and looked up to see Tyene leaning in the doorway. "I don't fault you. Missandei is beautiful and it was easy to see that she wanted a moment with you. A very enjoyable moment if last night was any indication. I never imagined she could scream so loud."
"Last night was…magical. Apologies." He said to Tyene, but she just walked over and straddled him, making sure to grind herself against his crotch.
"I require none. I know you slept with my sister and now that your handmaiden has gotten her turn perhaps it won't be long before she and I join you in bed together. Or perhaps Nymeria and I as she promised which I intend to make good on." She whispered. "I am your lover, and you will not be rid of me that easily."
"What about your father? Don't you desire a husband?" He wondered and she chuckled before leaning in. She placed one of his hands on her ass while she reached down and gripped his manhood.
"My father applauds me for snaring the Crown prince. And what husband could compete with the Conqueror and his mighty sword. All three of them." She whispered into his ear. "If you ever get tired of those prime and proper noble girls then I'll be right there."
Her whispers were like venom to his ear, but he kept his composure as he was sure that seeing him react was what she wanted. He knew her long enough to know her game so he played one of his own. He then moved both hands to her ass and grasped it hard making her gasp before he leaned in and kissed her neck. "You are incorrigible." He whispered.
"You may marry a good girl, but you need a bad pussy." She whispered before giving his ear a bite. He shivered a bit and Tyene smirked seeing that she still outmatched the prince in matters of seduction. She gave him a final searing kiss before she walked away with a noticeable sway in her hips. She looked back at him and gave him a playful wink as she left the bath.
"Whew…I may have bite off more then I could chew with her." He muttered as he finished getting dressed.
William walked through the hall on his way to the meeting room. He passed by Ser Arthur Dayne who joined him on the walk before they arrived. Everyone was gathered in the room with their morning meal on the table. Missandei was off to the side with Cedric as everyone looked at the prince before they all sat down at the table. William then walked forward and sat at the head of the table.
"Good morning. I hope everyone enjoyed their evening. We have work to do so let's begin." He said and they nodded.
Line Break xxxxx
One month later…
William and a small group accompanying him as his protectors and guards traveled to Yunkai along with members of the ruling council of Meereen where they would meet with members of the council of Yunkai and Astapor. It would be the first of many meetings to happen in the future between the three of them. The meeting would just be for the three cities to discuss topics that needed discussing like infrastructure, trading, along with all issues they would be facing from pirates to criminals. All three of them were now protectorates under the care and protection of Prince William Baratheon of Westeros so they were essentially sister cities now more then ever. Meeting to work together was nothing new and given their recent success they'd want to make sure that continues. The prince started the first meeting but after introductions and pleasantries were made, he took a step back to let the council members lead the discussion going forward which was on purpose.
The councils of Astapor and Yunkai had already been ruling their cities and the council of Meereen was doing the same more and more with Will stepping back so they should focus the direction of the meeting. Since he would be leaving back for home eventually, the cities needed to run and rule themselves which included working together. They discussed the influx of trade ships coming into the ports, requestioning additional war galleys from the arsenal Braavos to build up their own fleet for defense and trade, and the general maintenance and defense of their cities. The city watch of Astapor and Yunkai were in use and already patrolling and safekeeping their cities with new recruits being trained but the thousand Unsullied left in their cities by the Prince also added to their defensive capabilities. And the prince's network of spies would keep them apprised of any brewing actions but thankfully things were quiet.
In Volantis, Triarch Paenymion was ruling with the other two Triarch killed and was using the time to consolidate power for him and his party. With the aid of the red priests and priestesses of R'hllor preaching his narrow death as a sign from the Lord of Light many were quick to follow his lead. Paenymion deescalated tension in the city and focused more on trade and commerce to pick up business and an influx of money which had fallen to the wayside with all the efforts the other two Triarchs made in trying to kill the conqueror. Their endeavors had cost the city some gold and it needed to be recuperated. That alone earned him some points as he slowly snuffed out his opposition and weakened his political opponents while using the followers of R'hllor to advance his position and profile in the city. Will was still dubious as to whether if he could call Paenymion a true ally given the situation as they were more allies of convenience. He made a play for power, which he assumed he would, but he also knew that Paenymion couldn't reach out for a hand in friendship to him given what happened recently. That didn't mean that their sort of backdoor alliance couldn't be one day official but when would be a factor. He didn't think that Paenymion would do something stupid and make a play for Meereen, Astapor, and Yunkai but he wasn't just relying on hope. Kinvara and the followers of R'hllor may be assisting the sole surviving Triarch in improving his position in the city but she still believed that William was their prophesied Prince that was Promised so she still would answer to him if he asked her. That gave him some eyes and ears in the city which he reached out to with his usual spies of traders and guild members. He had hope but he covered his bases.
All in all, they had a good first meeting and would have another one in three months' time. They would set them on a schedule and an emergency meeting could be called if something should happen. One thing that did come from the meeting was a new name for Slaver's Bay since that no longer applied anymore. They gave it a new name that would slowly spread and be known across Essos and Westeros.
A place that once stood as the epitome of the Old Masters rule of slavery but was now an example of liberation, freedom, and change.
It had a nice ring to it and wasn't as egotistical as Conqueror's cove.
Three more months later…
The sun was bright and shining down on the sea in the Gulf of Grief. Mr. Biggs had informed Will that they saw eight ships amassing in New Ghis belonging to pirates who were harassing the trade ships coming in and out of the Jade Sea. Thankfully, they hadn't sunk any of their escort ships, but they were becoming a problem, so it was time to take them out before they had a chance to strike again, and they did.
Will was on the deck of the Jackdaw, his swiftest swan ship, clad in his armor and usual clothing. Mr. Gibbs was captaining the ship and they were currently sailing away from eight pirate ships. They sailed towards New Ghis and attacked the pirate ships on their way to intercept some trade ships coming from the Jade Sea. They didn't sink any of the ships on purpose to bait the pirates into following them which they did. The pirates figured with one ship against eight that they had the advantage. The Jackdaw was the fastest swan ship with the Black Pearl being the second. They were able to use the ship's speed to stay out of range of the pirates' ballistae and catapults but stayed close enough to keep them chasing them.
Captain Gibbs kept the ship heading west from New Ghis towards the Smoking Sea when they passed a large alcove of giant rocks protruding from the water. Will used a spyglass to look into the distance which is where he saw a reflective glint in the distance by the rocks. He looked up at the crow's nest on the ship and nodded. The ship hand up there used a giant mirror to reflect the sun's light and made his own reflective glint as Will walked over to the stern. Ser Arthur was using his spyglass to check that their pursuers were still following them.
"They're still following us." Ser Arthur told him.
"All right. Then it's time to show our hand. Mr. Gibbs! Time to spring the trap." Will said.
"Aye, your grace. Fire lances up on the stern!" Mr. Gibbs shouted as several ship hands came over to the stern and positioned large wooden poles on the stern railing before taking aim at the approaching pirate ship. The lances had large tubes of black powder wrapped around large broadhead projectiles like a ballista. They lit the fuses and the second the fire reached the black powder the tubes ignited and sent broadhead projectiles flying off the poles like fireworks and they crashed into one of the pirate ships. The fire lances were essentially larger versions of the black powder arrows and very effective. "Hang on!"
Mr. Gibbs turned the wheel the ship began turning around to the left. That gave their three small port side ballistae clear targets of the pirate ships. The gunners took aim while their aids lit the fuses of the black powder bundles on the ballistae bolts. "Loose!" William shouted and the ballistae fired. One hit the main pirate ship on the deck, the second hit the second from the left in the hull and the third hit the second from the middle in the side. The ballistae then exploded causing panic on the ships. Then the Black Pearl, the Aquilla, and the Flying Dutchman sailed past the alcove of rocks along with several other ships and headed towards the pirates.
The ballistae crew reloaded and fired on the others ships as Mr. Biggs sailed them towards the main ship. "All hands, make ready!" Ser Arthur shouted as the men and sailors grabbed weapons and rope. The Jackdaw sailed alongside the pirate ship for boarding as ship hands threw out grappling hooks attached to ropes when Will saw one of them get hit in the shoulder with an arrow. He looked up and saw two archers up on the mast of the pirate ship, so he pulled up his hood and walked over to the main mast pulley. He held onto the rope and cut it loose with his hidden blade which sent him up the mast to the main rigging. Will balanced on the mast poles and jumped from his ship to the pirates before jumping down and killing the two archers with a double aerial assassination.
Ser Arthur led the others in boarding the pirate ship. He used Dawn to cut through one pirate and then behead another before parrying the wild and crazed axe attacks from the side and running the pirate through the stomach with his blade. He pushed him off and picked a sword off the ground to duel-wield, taking on three pirates at once before slicing each one across the leg and chest and then did a final spinning slash across their necks.
Two pirates fell to the ground with knives in their throats as William exited the small cloud of smoke from the front of ship. The smoke was from the black powder charge and exiting from the smoke with his hood down and two dead pirates was as terrifying as it was awe inspiring. The other warriors in his crew got to work in taking out the pirates. Garlan Tyrell pushed back one pirate to the edge before kicking him over the side while Hundred Eyes easily deflected the axe from his attacker and slashed him across the neck with his sword.
William walked forward and picked up a harpoon propped up against a barrel and hurled it, spearing a pirate in the chest. He then pulled the rope attached to the harpoon, so the pirate's body flung over to him and held him up to shield him from an archer near the steering wheel. The dead pirate took the arrow in the back before Will tossed the body aside and used his Phantom Blade, killing the archer with a bolt to the neck. Another pirate charged at Will with his sword, but Will just unsheathed Storm's Wrath and cut his head off with one swing.
He walked up the stairs to the stern where he saw the pirate captain flanked by two of his men who he pushed back. "William the Conqueror." The man sneered as he drew his curved sword and stepped forward. "What will they call me when I kill a Conqueror?"
The captain attacked in a flurry of quick cuts and slashes that Will blocked and parried. He then ducked and sidestepped an overhead swing and attacked with a thrust that the pirate blocked before elbowing William in the face. He kept up the momentum with a cut but then pushed Will's sword to the side and shoved him back. Will ended up dropping Storm's Wrath with the pirate captain pointing his sword at him with a smile. He then did a diagonal overhead slash that Will dodged followed up with a lateral cut. Will parried the lateral cut with his hidden blades and then parried the captain's thrust and knocked him forward to the ground. The captain dropped his sword and ended up with his head caught between the ground and a spoke on the steering wheel.
"Nothing…" Will answered before slamming the steering wheel down and breaking the captain's neck. The last two remaining pirates were killed by Ser Arthur and Garlan Tyrell. William grabbed his sword and looked out over the side to see the other pirate ships being boarded or destroyed and sunk. He sheathed his sword as Ser Arthur joined his side. "Send word. If the ships can be salvaged good. If not, then take what they have."
"Yes, your grace." Ser Arthur replied.
"That was rather fun." Garlan remarked and the others nodded.
"Let's head back." He said and the men cheered in their victory.
All in all, four of the eight pirate ships were in good enough condition to be salvaged and kept afloat. They dealt with the pirates, kept the waters safe, and got some good practice in.
William and the others returned to Meereen victorious. The pirates were dead and four new ships were brought back that needed to be fixed up. Once they were then they could find people to use them. The naval power in Freedom's Cove was growing with every moon cycle. There were 93 Meereenese ships that had been refitted along with the 18 Braavosi War Galleys the prince personally paid for and commissioned but now added on 10 war galleys from the Arsenal of Braavos that the councils of Astapor, Yunkai, and Meereen paid for to provide further trade ships and protection in their bay. Adding on now four pirate ships and the dozen or so ships of the Royal Fleet that often sailed to Freedom's Cove for trade then their naval based interests were well looked after.
Will spoke to the Meereenese council about their success with the pirates and the four ships they brought back. One would stay in Meereen, one would go to Yunkai and the remaining two would go to Astapor since they needed more trade ships. It pleased him to see the council working so well and communicating regularly with the councils of Astapor and Yunkai. Afterward, he went to take a bath but was derailed as Tyene found him and dragged him to his room where Nymeria and Missandei were waiting for him. Suffice to say that was a memorable night.
The City of Meereen was busy with activity today as it was going to be playing host to the newly established Freedom Cove games and tournament. Much like the games he started in Astapor, it was now open to all three cities. This year Meereen would be hosting, and the next year would be Yunkai, then Astapor and then back to Meereen and repeat. The games were announced several months ago much to the excitement of everyone. The Meereenese council as quick to find their own champions in the various games and many were quick to sign up for their shot at glory and some nice coin.
The council members from Astapor and Yunkai arrived along with their champions and citizens who wanted to come see the games. Given how many people would come, the Councils met to possibly discuss building separate arenas outside each of their cities to aid in the lessening the amount of people that would flock in or possibly even designing and building a series of complexes outside of their cities somewhere in the vastness of Slaver's Bay to act as their official grounds for the games. It was interesting and possible but that would be discussed after this year's games. With the games and competitions, more traders had come to make a profit and some visitors were in attendance to enjoy the festivities. There were plays, music and a general festive and celebratory time was had. The people of Meereen, Astapor, and Yunkai were happy.
Will was out on the balcony of his room and looked out at the city of Meereen and admired all the good work he's done. The city was festive and the anticipation for the games was evident. It did him good to see all his hard work was paying off.
"Relishing in your victories?" He heard as Cedric and Ser Arthur walked over and joined him.
"Our victories. If there was any doubt of our good work well…let this be proof that we accomplished the impossible." He said and they smiled.
"Not a bad way to bring in the new year, isn't it?" Ser Arthur remarked, and they chuckled. "Question now is what you want to do next?"
William gave it some thought as he looked out at the city. "Freedom's Cove is safe. Financially and strategically. I've done everything I can here so perhaps it's time to move on. I imagine many in our party are sick for home."
"That they are." Cedric agreed. "Should we begin making preparations?"
"Yes, but after the games. Slowly, of course. We don't want our sudden departure to cause too much strife or give our enemies a chance to act." He told them. "Send a raven to my uncle and have him send some of the Royal Fleet to Freedom's Cove. We'll need a lot of ships."
"Of course. I'll also send word to Braavos and requisition a few more war galleys to help keep Freedom's Cove safe." Cedric suggested.
"Do it." William replied. "We'll tell the others after the games are over. I imagine many of them will be happy at the news."
"And you?" Ser Arthur wondered.
"Ready for the next part of my journey. It's time to go home." He stated.
Game of Thrones: History and Lore of Westeros and Essos
Robert's Rebellion by Ser Arthur Dayne
It's hard to imagine now but once it seemed as though the Targaryen Dynasty would endure for ten thousand years. But instead, it died out at around 200. Once a mighty dynasty with dragons as big as cities…now, all that remains of them are the legacies they've left behind and the stories echoed throughout history. In its heyday, House Targaryen was strong with more dragons then ever, even before the Great Doom but now those dragons are long gone as are their riders. Of course, I never saw a Targaryen dragon. I joined them long after they had died out in a civil war. The first conflict that marked the decline of House Targaryen…but the Mad King was the final architect of its end.
The rule of the Mad King, at first, was a peaceful one. If things had gone different then Aerys Targaryen wouldn't be the mad king that history remembers him as but fate would not have it so. The peace was kept thanks to the work of the lords who served him but I don't think any of them could have stopped what was to come. How our actions lead to a war that nearly tore the Kingdom apart and ended the Targaryens.
I was a member of his Kingsguard, sworn to the protect the king and the royal family with my life, to obey his commands, and to keep his secrets. If I knew then what I know now…I'm not sure if I would have followed the orders of the crowned Prince Rhaegar Targaryen as infallibly as I did then. Love and supposed-destiny led to ruin as Rhaegar, ever the prince obsessed with prophecy, ran away south to Dorne with Lyanna Stark while she was betrothed to Robert Baratheon and pregnant with his child. Only the people there knew the truth and if everyone else did maybe it would have prevented what happened but they didn't. Thinking that his sister was taken, Brandon Stark rode to King's Landing and demanded his sisters return and the death of Rhaegar. Aerys arrested him for treason and called his father, Rickard Stark to the capital to ransom him. When he arrived, Aerys, now fully mad, arrested him for treason as well. Lord Rickard Stark was burned alive with Wildfyre while his son Brandon could do nothing but helplessly watch as his father died and strangled himself trying to free him.
After that, Aerys called for the head of Eddard Stark and Robert Baratheon, hoping to end his future enemies but his actions only solidified their actions against him. Together with the help of Jon Arryn who fostered them both in the Vale, they raised a combined force in rebellion and the continent was plunged into war. It ended at the Ruby Ford where Robert Baratheon killed Rhaegar Targaryen. King's Landing was sacked and Jaime Lannister, another member of the Kingsguard killed the Mad King, ending his reign. Many call him the Kingslayer and rightfully so…but in hindsight, sometimes forgoing one's honor to protect others is the truest notion of a knight. Because where was I? Down in Dorne, looking after a boy and Lyanna pregnant with Rhaegar's child. The rebellion…our fault. When Eddard Stark arrived at the Tower of Joy, I was prepared to follow my oath and hopefully die by it. It's the only fate a so called true knight deserves for his actions but perhaps fate intervened as William stopped us before the fight could end with either my death or Lord Stark's.
I wasn't there to witness the event that started of the rebellion but I heard what happened. How The Mad King laughed as Rickard Stark burned alive and Brandon Stark died trying to save him. Two noble men were ruthlessly tortured and no one did a thing to stop it. I'm not sure if I would have back then if I was there. Maybe I would have. Maybe I would have died with them but my conscience would be clear.
As a boy, you grow up with notions and stories of knights and warriors in war, thinking that they're the noblest of heroes but when faced with true nature of war and knighthood…that quickly vanishes. These days knighthoods are so eagerly given out to any lord or son of a lord with the right name and right coin as they joust and prance on their horses. But I know one man who has truly earned his knighthood. A man I was sworn to protect by Rhaegar Targaryen…but now I serve him of my own free will. Because I believe in him.
Robert's Rebellion or the War of the Usurper, whatever people call it. Perhaps it was fates way of shaking the board clear for a new start. A fire in a forest is horrible but like all scars, they can heal. Robert Baratheon is many things but a good king is not one of them. Much like Aerys, their hands keep the realm together. I doubt he'd like to hear that. But one good thing that came from him is his son. Prince William Baratheon, First of his name, Crowned Prince of the Andals and the First Men, Protector of the Realm, The Blue Wolf, Slayer of the Iron Born, Wolf of Storms, Breaker of Chains, William the Conqueror.
He is a true prince and will be a true king. One I know that will be everything Rhaegar should have been…everything the people of Westeros need. A king that would make a Kingsguard proud to be at his side.
1). The Phantom Blade from Assassin's Creed
End of Chapter 13
Hoped you guys liked the chapter. William's work in Slaver's Bay is done and now he is going to go home. A lot of interesting things will happen now. He's been gone for a long time so would it really be like coming home or has he been gone for too long that it's not the same as he remembers? Perhaps a bit of but now that he is going back, he'll do what he does best. Upset the powers that be and do what is right. And anyone who tries to stop him will find just how dangerous he really is and that his stories aren't just tall tales.
Next chapter, Will begins his return home. The Seven Kingdoms have their crown prince back and it'll be a homecoming to be remembered. He's changed a great deal with his adventures and it's time for the Seven Kingdoms to see just how much. But there's one slight problem. What is he gonna do with the dragon?
Sorry it took so long guys. Laptop issues are no fun when they happen to you but I hoped you guys liked the chapter. William and Missandei have finally had their moments so for you horndogs I hoped you enjoyed it. Again, I'm not a lemon writer so it's really the best you get with those kinds of scenarios.
Updates for December: The Crimson Speedster and Spectacular Spider-man for December. And for the end of the year I have a surprise. A new story will be debuting near the end of the month. I can right now that it's not a Naruto crossover story, sorry guys, and it's not the Boy's story I put the poll on. I'm still workshopping ideas for that. Hope everyone has a healthy and happy Holiday Season. Stay safe and look out for other people. Until then!
William Baratheon: Son of Robert Baratheon and Lynna Stark, Prince of the Seven Kingdoms, the Blue Wolf, Slayer of the Iron Born, The Wolf of Storms, Breaker of Chains, Wolf of Justice, Stag of Righteousness, William the Conqueror, Khal of Tonitrua (Thunder)
Appearance: Young Stephen Amell
Birthdate: 279AC: 17 years old
Regular Clothing/appearance: Boots, long black or grey trousers, light white tunic/shirt, dark blue/black leather jacket with hood and facemask. Gloves. Vambraces with hidden blades, Valyrian daggers holstered in boots, and Storm's Wrath slung over his left hip
Steel plated combat gloves
Steel plated vambraces/forearm guards with Valyrian steel forearm spikes and attached hidden blades.
Light metal leg greaves
Iron plated Samurai Dō (Chest armor) colored black with flecks of dark blue and white with sigil of House Baratheon and Stark. Attached leather shoulder pauldrons with light metal covering.
Black/Blue Goldenheart tree Composite Recurve Bow and Arrows usually kept in saddle holster
Small throwing knives looped in belt
Valyrian Steel stiletto dagger & Valyrian Steel Dragonbone dagger holstered in boots
Valyrian steel bastard sword Storm's Wrath holstered around left hip. Black scabbard with a black colored blade streaked with ripples of gold and red.
Valyrian steel bastard sword Wolf's Fang holstered over left shoulder or in saddle holster when riding. Grey scabbard with blue and white colored blade.
Hidden blades taken from assassin and secured on forearm bracers. Attached Phantom Blade on left bracer.
Pouch of small smoke or gas bombs
Swan Ships: The Jackdaw, The Aquilla, The Black Pearl, The Flying Dutchman
Notable Talents: Expert archer/trained in the Summer isles speed archery, knife thrower with expert aim and marksmanship. Ambidextrous and trained in sword combat by Ser Arthur Dayne and Ser Barristan Selmy. Close combat training by Hundred Eyes. Agile and quick moving, self-trained in parkour, Free running, and urban exploration. Smart and quick thinking on the battlefield. Knowledge of battle tactics, poison, wildlife, history, politics, and economics. Fluent in Low Valyrian, High Valyrian, Summer Tongue, and Dothraki.
Personality: Smart, attentive, wise, honorable up to a point, caring, generous, humble and cares about others. Hates backstabbers, deceivers, people who violate his trust or think they are superior to others. Doesn't like to be treated like a child or an idiot. Unrelenting against his enemies or those who harm innocents or his family. Prone to carrying the weight of the world on his shoulders or self-doubt in certain situations.
Army: 10,000 Unsullied soldiers, 3,000 Dothraki Calvary, 1,000 former Golden Company soldiers
Cedric Angar: personal tutor and once trained to be Maester, trusted friend
Ser Arthur Dayne: Sworn Sword, protector, and trainer
The Stark Family of Winterfell: Family
Robert Baratheon: Father
Stannis Baratheon: Uncle and Lord Paramount of the Stormlands
Ser Davos Seaworth: advisor of Stannis Baratheon and trusted friend
Ser Barristan Selmy: Commander of the Kingsguard, sworn to protect him
Hundred Eyes: Kung Fu trainer and friend
Gendry: squire, friend, and younger half-brother-age 14
Edric: friend and younger half-brother-age 13
Hercules: Leader of band of mercenaries, incredible strength, and skilled fighter
Autolycus: Second in Command, expert knife thrower, thief, and spy
Amphiaraus: Expert spear fighter, supposed seer and prophet
Tydeus: Feral warrior, relentless and highly dangerous in combat
Atalanta: Excellent combatant, tracker, and Amazon Archer
Iolaus: Persuasive, excellent negotiator, storyteller, and orator
Joshamee Mr. Gibbs: Commodore and captain of the Prince's Swan Ships, expert sailor, and naval combat operator
Adewale: Second in command of the Prince's Swan Ships, expert sailor, and naval combat operator
Orys: Golden Crown Eagle
Missandei: Personal handmaiden, translator, advisor, confidante, and friend.
Grey Worm: Unsullied soldier and commander of Unsullied Legion
Roach: Personal horse, fast, brave, a bit of a jester
Durran: Dragon. Blue scaled with black markings, green eyes. About the size of a small dog.
Disclaimer: I don't own Game of Thrones or any mentioned properties, all rights belong to their respective owners. I'm just a big fan.