The Return Of Redhand, Chapter 3-4

Sthisse has news. Redhand starts an operation.

Chapter 3.


Sthisse looked at the telegram from her father and grinned. She took it and went to Sarya’s office. “They got the girls out.”

“Who got the girls out?”

“That’s a bit interesting. Saevel, Sudyral, Taran and some others ported them to the Sanctum, but they didn’t operate the Jumpers and the Jumpers disappeared.”

“The good news is that the girls are out again. Where are they?”

“Dad took some of them to Innshys and the Sanctuary to shop. Susan apparently was somewhat responsible.”

Sarya laughed. Onia came in and said, “You have big news, Sthisse?”

“The girls are out. Dad sent a telegram.”

Onia grinned. “I hope that they are on their way.”

“Not quite yet. Dad took them shopping at the Sanctuary. They are staying overnight at the house up there and then flying down from Ishendell tomorrow.”

“That was a bad thing to do.”

“Yes it was, since I haven’t been to the Sanctuary yet.”

“We’ll go after the session is over.”

Quickfoot woke up and realized that she was lying next to the teacher’s portal. She looked around and the other members of the Stewards were there as well. She looked down and there was an envelope pinned to her blouse. She pulled it off and opened it. The message inside said, “The decision made by the House was to send you all home when the girls were retrieved. The House wants all of you to remember that the House has enough evidence to place you all in jeopardy of going to prison for the rest of your lives. If you communicate with your fellows still working with the Project, communicate with the Project or assist the Project in any way, the House will send the evidence to the appropriate authorities.”

The letter had the House Silverin seal as a signature.

Chapter 4.

The Carayarus Estate

Redhand looked at the report that had come through the small portal and grinned. Apparently the Community had been complacent, somebody had taken advantage and conducted a raid, recovering the hostages and damaging some things. The Community wanted to know what he was doing. Redhand looked at the map. The Community was about to find out. Calling in his lieutenants, he said, “Here is what we are going to do.”

Pyria turned to Nightshower and said, “You have been a big help. How did you meet Keryth?”

“I met him right after my brother met Daisy. I was in the Lower City and felt more than a bit left out because Daisy had my brother and Talissa had Jimmy. Then I bumped into Keryth.”

“You bumped into Keryth.”

“Actually I think he bumped into me. I was walking down the street and he bumped into me, or I bumped into him. We started to talk and he took me to lunch and shopping. We made another date and things have been going along since.”

“When is the wedding?”

“Next year. Alinar and Sally are next and then Keryth and me. We have to schedule around some other weddings as well. Have you made plans with Renynn as yet?”

“Not as yet. We haven’t had a chance to leave the estate with all the things going on. So I haven’t met the family.”

“I wouldn’t worry.”

“I’m not, really.”

“You and Renynn have gone a long way to make a home here.”

 “We have, that is true.”

Ivaran and Ryul were driving the GP along a long abandoned and rather rough road toward the place where the barn that had made no sense on the map was when they saw the first Jumper lift off and disappear. That Jumper was followed by others. Ivarin looked at his brother and said, “Let’s get back. We want to call this in.”

“No kidding.”

Ryul put the GP in reverse and started to turn around.  A flash struck the place they had just been and Ryul gunned the GP as Ivarin drew his carbine and looked for targets.  Ryul stopped the GP and Ivarin spotted movement and fired twice as Ryul put the GP in gear again and they sped down the road. Ivarin spotted some more shapes and took shots at them, hitting one, as it dropped. There were some more flashes and the shapes disappeared down the road. After about five miles, Ryul stopped and said, “We stumbled into something. Mark this road on the map.”

“Yup. Let’s go.”

Zelphar was riding along the border of the estate looking for the infiltrators and spies with some of the Obedient when one of them cursed and pulled his rifle out of his saddle holster. He pointed over to the side and called out, “Hostiles incoming!”

The other Obedient dismounted and drew their rifles. “Get to cover, Milord!”

Zelphar dismounted and ran behind a log as the Obedient opened fire as monstrous shapes moved forward through the woods. There were flashes all around and screams as men were hit. There being nothing he could do, he crawled away, ducking as the occasional flash struck nearby. Finally he could look back and things were chasing the horses as the remaining Obedient fell, one by one and the sounds of the rifles stopped. Shambling through the woods, flinching at every noise behind him, Zelphar reached the road and started down it. One of the vehicles that the Carayarus used drove up and stopped. An arm reached out and grabbed Zelphar and dragged him in. The vehicle started up again and the man who had pulled him into the vehicle said, “I’m Ivaran and this is my brother, Ryul. We heard shots. What went on over there.”

“We were attacked by monsters. The Obedient with me were destroyed.”

“Redhand is making a move and establishing a perimeter,” Ryul said. “He’s going to push at the cult to drive them over us and push us all out. Then he’s going to retreat and go back to cover, with all the estates unoccupied and no one to see him get the Jumpers in and out.”

“How do you know all that?”

“Service and Ranger school. Setting up a base and being able to force enemy sentries far enough back that they can’t see what you’re doing is basic strategy. He’s going to launch some raids and probably spread the Blight all over the Qinvaris farms to cover what he is really doing.”

“Why now?”

“Time. He is running out if he wants to strike at the harvest. So he is doing that now, while he still can. He’s probably already found the battery factory, that is if he didn’t already know about it.”

“I don’t understand any of that.”

“Don’t worry. We’ll get you to your sister and then have a chat with the Prophet. Lord Qinvaris has been treating you all with kid gloves, but Redhand won’t.”

“Why go to the estate first?”

“Because we have a telephone and you don’t. So we can call the Qinvaris and the Justiciars. Then we will want every man and gun we can to cover your people’s retreat.”

“Do you think that we will have to?”

“He had his people grab Hibiscus so that his monsters could eat her. If you don’t want a bunch your people fed to monsters you better be prepared to leave.”

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