Teaser Tuesday: Raid on the Port

Art by Alison Hunt

Here it is!  The first teaser for War of Nytefall: Lost and we’re going to see how it opens.  Went for a big chunk too.  It’s been 17 years since War of Nytefall: Loyalty, so a lot has changed and stayed the same.  As usual, there’s a cut in case people didn’t want to catch a few potential spoilers.

The rocky coastline of northern Ralian is cloaked in fog, which helps to mask the battle raging in the hidden port. Tucked in a bay that is protected by jagged rocks, the small collection of piers has stood as the sole survivor of a great dockyard. The creaky walkways are flanked by light brown walls that show an etching of the area as it was prior to the Great Cataclysm merging the rest of the city with the stone. A single door stands at the back of the hollowed out cliffside, but it opens to nothing more than a large storehouse that now holds hundreds of crates marked for Nytefall. To reach the port, one has to either come by boat through the only safe path or challenge the slick mountainside that would take half a day for even the most experienced climber to successfully scale. That is until today since a small army of invaders has descended using enchanted gauntlets to punch gaping holes in the wet stone. Protected by their ebony night cloaks, the warriors of Nyte flow down the stones and leave trails of damage in their path. With every quake, the damage grows worse and cracks run across the cliff face, which is on the verge of collapsing to consume the beautiful reminder of early Windemere.

Standing in the middle of the battle, a seven-foot Dawn Fang swings two giant swords to behead several enemies at once. Having been caught by surprise, Titus Winthrop is nothing more than blood-soaked pants and his metallic coat, which helps to deflect the weakest of his enemies’ attacks. The unique jacket is left open enough to show the horrific scars on his chest, the marks getting redder as he falls further into a barely controlled battle lust. A chop cuts a cloaked vampire in half and he kicks the remains into the water to join the other bobbing corpses, which have begun to attract sharks. He frowns at how the Dawn Fangs are being pushed back towards the churning ocean, but they are outnumbered by at least five to one. Even the barrage of elemental attacks and their superior strength is not enough to turn the tide since most of his companions are halflings who were turned for their sailing experience. The few with combat experience focus more on protecting their friends, which allows the invaders to continue gaining ground. Pushing further into the vampire army, Titus summons a spectral double that stands back-to-back with him and protects his flank.

“Charge and kill the old guard!” the towering Dawn Fang roars, his voice echoing throughout the port. Magically inspired by his bellowing orders, the others cheer and rush their enemies with renewed strength. “I’ll never get tired of that. How’s the ship doing, Bob? I know you came back out after getting the supplies to safety. You’re the only one here who would whistle and dance during a battle. Don’t tell me you’re starting to get as bored as Clyde. Not sure we can handle both of you getting twitchy at the same time.”

“Mab is taking care of the ship and letting off some steam,” Bob announces, the elf materializing next to his friend. Jabbing with his lance, he uses his other hand to pick bone chips out of his blonde and black hair. “I think she’s still angry that Clyde told her to stop robbing treasuries. That was a messy fight between them. Do you think she’s really going to stay away from Nytefall for the whole week? I’ve never seen them like this before.”

“I have and it’ll blow over,” Titus admits while spinning his claymores. He cuts his own sides to lace the blades with his blood, which gives the metal a crimson tint. “Remember that we’re only pushing them back. Those who escape are not to be pursued, especially since this place is going to collapse at any moment. Wish I knew who told Tempest’s people about our secret port because now we’re down a supply line. It might be too late now, but I wouldn’t mind feeding the traitor his own spleen. Why are you shaking your head?”

“I always said those ships would get followed one day.”

“You just wanted us to use giant seahorses.”

“I put a lot of work into those.”

“And they were eaten by sharks.”

“Not all of them.”

“Yes, all of them.”

“I mean, there are some scraps left that I could have cobbled together.”

“Stick to land horses, Bob.”

A horn erupts from somewhere high above the battle and Titus looks up in time to see a muscular figure drop from the sky. The hairy creature lands on a pier, which shatters and lets the new threat drop into the water. Bursting out of the ocean, the enemy Dawn Fang has a large shark by the tail and begins wielding it like a sword. A fanged orchid tattoo is on the General’s exposed chest, the white mark a symbol of his loyalty to the city of Nyte. Sprouting another pair of burly arms, he charges into the dwindling defenders and stomps on the halflings as they do their best to push him back. A constant roar ripples through everyone’s ears, which makes it difficult to focus and maintain their balance on the crumbling battleground. The psychic attack breaks the concentration of the vampirized halflings who are trying to use their various elemental powers, their blasts and orbs flying high above their targets. Anyone who dares to leap on the rampaging Dawn Fang is engulfed in a thick cloud of acidic gas that seeps from the man’s greasy skin. Falling into the water, the injured struggle to get back to shore before the ravenous sharks devour them whole.

While Bob strips off his leather armor and dives into the ocean to convince the hungry predators to leave their people alone, Titus vaults over the taller enemy. He lets his double attack, the spectral blade striking the larger Dawn Fang’s shoulder, as he pumps more blood into his arms. Satisfied with his increased strength, the leader of the Vengeance Hounds whirls around to strike with the flat side of both blades. He curses when he sees that the other warrior is not sent flying like he had hoped, but is only pushed back a few steps. A faint ringing in his ears gives him an idea of what he is dealing with, but he stabs one of the sprouted arms and an original at the same time to confirm his suspicions. The newer limb is pierced without incident while his other sword makes it half an inch before striking metal. With a fang-bearing grin, Titus sheathes his claymores and casually punches the General in the nose. The blow is enough to dent the iron plate that has been implanted in the other vampire and leave the man’s face a mangled mess. Seeing wisps of acidic gas on his knuckles, the older Dawn Fang casually bends down to dip his arm into the water and wash off the dangerous fog.

“Looks like we have another one of Kai’s projects,” Titus mutters as he smacks the snarling invader’s blows away.

About Charles Yallowitz

Charles E. Yallowitz was born, raised, and educated in New York. Then he spent a few years in Florida, realized his fear of alligators, and moved back to the Empire State. When he isn't working hard on his epic fantasy stories, Charles can be found cooking or going on whatever adventure his son has planned for the day. 'Legends of Windemere' is his first series, but it certainly won't be his last.
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11 Responses to Teaser Tuesday: Raid on the Port

  1. Great excerpt, Charles. Exciting for sure.


  2. L. Marie says:

    I can tell you had a blast writing this, Charles. So glad! 😀


  3. Very exciting! Thanks for sharing it as a teaser.


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