The Bastard Son Chapter 6
The lush, green fields surrounding Gregminister are silent. The moonlight gives off a sullen green glow from the midnight dew. The entire landscape remains still and silent. Even the air seems to be awaiting any kind of action to break the silence. Indeed, at this hour the only thing awake are the owls. Well the owls and
"Can you see it yet, Young master?" A familiar voice spoke. Two figures slowly marched across the field in the cold midnight air, both heavily cloaked to guard themselves from the cold normally found in this region. These are no normal travelers though. They might be the two most famous faces in all of Toran.
"Yes, Gremio." Martin spoke up. "The city walls are just over the hill."
"Soon we will be home, Young master. It is exciting isn't it?"
"For the last time, Gremio, Stop calling me that. I'm close to thirty years old now. I'm hardly "a Young Master" anymore." He joked.
"I know Master Martin." Gremio sighed. "Yet you must admit, its hard to remember that when your appearance hasn't changed in the many years since we left Gregminister."
"True, but we all know that the 'soul eater' is to blame for that. I can't help it if I still look sixteen." He laughed.
Gremio smiled. "Very true, master Martin. Still, Cleo will be beside herself with jealousy."
Martin Smiled too. The two casually strolled up to the gates of the great city. Martin laughed to himself. "Well there's only one way to get in "
Martin laughed as he knocked on the giant door protecting the sleeping citizens of Gregminister. Behind the door, they could hear a guard rushing to the port window. Gremio and Martin waited patiently wondering what they would say to the guard. It's somewhat hard to believe a stranger calling in the middle of the night is the so-called "Great Hero," Martin McDohl.
From the outside of the door they could hear the gate guard fumbling with the lock on the port window, before it swung open, revealing a lone guard peering out at them. His eyes as wide as his mouth was open, the man stood aghast at what he saw.
"Uh Hello there sir." Martin began. "We don't have a pass or anything but "
Before Martin could finish speaking, the window had forcibly closed, and the only noticeable sound were the footsteps of the guard running from the door. Martin looked over to Gremio, who returned the confused stare.
A solid five minutes had gone by with no sign of the guard, or anyone for that matter.
"What now, young master?" Gremio finally asked.
"Well we could scale the walls " he suggested mockingly, "that is, of course, assuming you can make it." He smiled and laughed.
Gremio squinted in annoyance. "Hey I'm pretty nimble for a man my age, young master."
"Is that right? Is that why you needed me to bail you out from those bandits in the badlands?"
Gremio folded his arms. " It was all part of my strategy."
Before Martin could crack another joke, they heard something from the other side of the door. A series of cranks and pulleys began to turn, and the gates to Gregminister city opened.
Martin and Gremio were astounded with what greeted them on the other side of the Gate. It seemed like the entire Gregminister security force had turned out, not to mention the seven familiar faces accompanying them.
Martin smiled widely at the sight. Tears began forming in the corners of his eyes as he noticed two very special people in the audience.
"Welcome home, Master Martin." Cleo spoke.
"You are looking well, young master." Pahn smiled.
Gremio smiled as he watched Martin run into a loving embrace with Pahn and Cleo. They may not be related, but they are certainly family. Cleo began crying like an infant, and even the stone hearted Pahn was a bit touched emotionally by this reunion. Gremio walked over to the reunion, and soon all four were in tears. Martin turned, wiping the tears from his eyes to great the rest of friends.
"Welcome back, Martin." The old stick fighting master, Kai, spoke. Reaching his hand out for a handshake, but instead being greeted by a warm hug, Kai smiled and laughed lightly as he patted Martin on the back.
President Lepant and his wife Eileen stood there smiling at the whole event. "Master Martin, you look as strong and prosperous as the day we first met. It is good to see you again, sir."
Martin smiled, and reached out shaking Lepant's hand. "I could say the same of your lovely wife, President Lepant." He said smiling as he kissed Eileen's hand.
Eileen blushed. "Perhaps you should save some of those charms for her." She said smiling as she alluded to the nearby Kasumi.
Kasumi was also blushing. Martin stepped before her and moved in close to her. Her light breath brushing against his chest, he smiled and peered down towards her. "Uhmm, its good to see you again, my lord." She smiled as she stared down towards the floor.
Martin reached down and placed his forefinger below her chin, and slowly lifted her face, until their eyes met. Martin smiled, leaned in and gently embraced Kasumi. "It's good to see you again, Kasumi." He smiled.
Kasumi grinned like a schoolgirl. Her cheeks flushed as small tears strolled down either side of her face. Taking solace in Martin's arms, she leaned against his chest smiling and lightly weeping.
"You McDohl men are all the same." A voice joked from the side. "Your all charmers." Martin turned to see Sonya Shulan smiling at him from his left. Martin smiled back to the woman he had often jokingly referred to as his 'Step Mother.'
"It's great to see you again, Sonya." Martin said.
"Likewise." She said, never one to allow her emotions to get the better of her.
"Not to put a damper on things," Lepant spoke up, "but its late, and we have a busy day preparing for the summit tomorrow. So we'd best be going."
"Of course, president Lepant." Martin spoke up.
"Alas I too must be going, Martin." Sonya spoke up. "Stop by tomorrow though, there is someone I had wanted you to meet."
"Will do." Martin said.
"Sadly, I have to go as well, Martin." Kasumi said placing her hand on his chest and backing up just a bit. "The summit and all." She leaned in and kissed him on the cheek. "But I too will see you tomorrow."
Seeing that Martin wasn't about to say anything and wreck the tender silence between he and Kasumi, Gremio felt it was his place to set things strait. "Well then," he spoke up, "We should probably head home as well, young master."
"We will have a regiment of troops accompany you on your way home, Master Martin." Lepant reassured.
Pahn smiled and looked back towards Lepant. "That's okay, Mr. President." He said, as he gazed towards Cleo and Gremio. "We'll protect him."
Martin smiled at that statement. He needed no protection and they knew it, but hearing Pahn utter those all to familiar words, he finally accepted the truth. At long Last, Martin McDohl was home.