"Who has made the poor decision to seek the attention of Quietus?" boomed a deep voice, a British accent noticable in the words. "They will not hesitate to wipe your sorry forms from existence, if you prove to be a waste of time." The dragonborn warrior grunted to himself, crossing his arms and swaying his tail. "I haven’t come here to listen to you pretend to be a terrifying mage," he said irritably, earning a huff from the voice bouncing around the stone valley walls. He looks up at the dark opening to a small cave, easily twenty-five feet off the ground, with no visible path up. "I’ve come to ask that this ‘Quietus Reverse’-" he says, making quotation marks with his scaled fingers- "reveal themselves, or to leave this place within the day. You’re in the King’s hunting grounds. I’m sure he would not mind hunting a weakling wizard."
The sound of light hoofsteps comes from the cave, growing louder for a few minutes, then stopping when a hooded figure barely steps out. From what the dragonborn can tell, it’s a rather small, four-legged being; a young centaur, he guesses. “Weak wizard?” the figure says in an offended tone. “I’m an extremely powerful being! I am on my way to becoming top of royalty!!” they extend their right foreleg, revealing it to be covered in blue fur, patterned with dark purple. The hoof is a darker purple, and there’s fetlocks dangling from the back of the ankle. The warrior rolls his yellow eyes as this deluded female centaur continues.
"How dare your king attempt to remove me from his ground, he should be honored, grateful for the opportunity to polish my filthiest hoof! And to send some stupid dragon brute to demand my removal…Gah! The idea is astounding!" They their hoof and glare down at the mentioned ‘brute’, who is bristling at the comment. "I’m doin’ this for experience and gold, little miss mare," he hisses up at the figure, now examining their hoof. "Get down here and fight me to show off your powers, if you feel you’re so great!"
They laugh at him, shaking their head. Wait, they don’t have the upper body of a human, from what he can tell. What are they? “That’s cute. Go earn your bits doing something worthwhile, you silly hatchling.” “Hatchling?!” He almost shrieks in anger, and they nod. “You don’t have wings, so clearly you’re young. And wouldn’t offering you anything allow your greed to grow? That’s a dangerous thing for this king to do. Tut tut.” They turn away, heading back into the cave, and Taeq, the schooled, trained, easily angered by hoofed jerks dragonborn warrior decides that it’s time to get up there and forcibly remove this pest.
He walks over to the stone wall, dropping his sword and pack, and begins to climb his way up, wriggling clawed fingers into cracks and holes, until he eventually makes it onto the ledge leading into the cave. Scrambling up onto it, he takes a moment to regain his breath, as it was harder than expected, then he marches into the cave, metal boots crashing against the rock. A scared gasp echoes out, signalling that the centaur wasn’t expecting him to come up there, and a pale purple light appears in the back of the cave, illuminating the shape of a small sword.
“Get back!” they command, pointing the sword in Taeq’s direction. “I may nor know how to use a sword properly, but I can probably- HEY!!” The warrior walks right up and grabs the handle, pulling on it. The centaur uses the purple light, which Taeq has guessed is their magic, because they have a wand or something that’s lighting up too, and it begins a small tug-o-war. Taeq ends up winning, and tosses the sword behind him. “If you leave now, I’ll let you live,” growls the wizard, but the dragonborn ignores them, and simply picks them up, hands under their forelegs. They flail all four legs and let out a small screech of anger. “LET GO OF ME RIGHT NOW!” Taeq shrugs and turns, stuffing the angry creature under his arm and leaving the cave. They attempt to ‘grab’ the sword as they pass, but Taeq takes it first, tossing it out of their sight, which brings on more flailing kicks.
He yanks off their cloak as he exits the cave, holding them up as he first did. Then he stares, confused, at the tiny, colorful unicorn, wings the same colors as their sticking straight out from their back. They’re glaring daggers at the dragonborn, and they swipe a hoof at his face, which he easily dodges by leaning his head back. The unicorn huffs again, folding their forelegs in a way that only a humanoid should. It doesn’t look unnatural, though, which Taeq finds odd.
“What in hell,” he starts, after a few minutes of silence, “are you?” They lay their ears back, and begin flailing again. “I’m a very powerful unico- alicorn, who demands that you let the BUCK go of me!” He drops the angry unicorn, still confused. They let out a yelp when they hit the ground, and sit up with a whine. “Not like that, you idiot,” they mumble, rubbing the back of their head. “I’m going to ask again. What are you?” Taeq says slowly, watching them stand up. They were just barely half of his 7’0 height. “I’m an alicorn, I just said that,” they say, retrieving their cloak and strapping it back on with their magic. They wiggle their wings through holes in the back of it, and adjust the tie at their throat; they’re wearing an ornate silver chestplate, making parts of the cloak sit oddly. “I am Quietus Reverse, a powerful alicorn who could easily raze this kingdom with my army of the undead! I am a princess, no, a queen of corpses!” Taeq stares at her, while she pauses, rethinking that last line. “Queen of Corpses. Hm. That’s got a nice ring to it, I like that. A QUEEN OF CORPSES, I SAY!!” she resumes, bellowing the words at Taeq.
The warrior rolls his eyes, going to the edge of the stone platform and preparing to head back down. “Whatever you are, you’re coming with me to talk to the king. Let’s go.” Quietus trots over to the scaled being, looking down. “And what’ll happen if I don’t? ” she asks. “Then you’ll be hunted down,” Taeq responds casually. The alicorn shudders. “Fine, I’ll come.” Taeq grins, glad that he’s not going to have to lug her back to the castle. “Then come on.” Her ears lay back again, and she lets out a groan.
“I can’t fly.”
Taeq lets out a series of muttered swears. This is going to be one irritating trip to the castle.