THE WOLF FOLK SERIES
REBUILDING A WORLD
A STORY OF AN UNCOMMON FAMILY
Charles W. Bird
Charles W. Bird
This story is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are either the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously and any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, events or locales is entirely coincidental. This story is protected by copyright and may not be reproduced by any means without the express, written permission of the author.
From Chapter 13: Tosco came running up, all out of breath and said to his Father, "My Lord King, the planes have been fueled and supplies are on board. I AM coming with you, Father, they will have to go through me to ever come near to thee. This is a Family affair!" Jeremiah chuckled, "Son, you will have to fight all those in front of us, if you wish to be the first to strike a blow!" Tosco replied, "Lord of Wolves Above Us All, that woman President in Argentina has bit off more than she can chew! She cannot know what she has called down upon herself!" Jeremiah was grim, he neither liked nor wanted war with Argentina or anyone else, he hoped to be able to negotiate a solution to their problem.
ARRIVAL AND ASSESMENT
The fleet of fourteen planes circled the International Airport, Ministro Pistarini, known also as Ezeiza Aeroporto, for more than an hour before permission was given to land.
The Red Wolf was first down and they were guided to a parking place. King's Pilot, Prince Paul had asked for ground level debarkation.
The first person out of the plane was the King's Squire, Jeremiah Long Branch, who stood on the top landing and bellowed out, "KINGS GUARDS, ATTEND FORMATION!"
Half of the guards, six imposing Cherokee Wolf Warriors formed up at the foot of the accommodation ladder and took a dozen paces forward, then stood there at rigid attention, their spears lowered and pointing directly ahead. Their conventional weapons showed clearly through the webbing across their shoulders. Their deer hide uniforms had a yellow crown stitched on their left chest and they wore caps with a golden Wolf's Head pinned to the front of their caps. The wolf's head showed a silver crown on its head.
The King's Squire then called out, "PIPERS, POST!" The Twelve Royal Pipers formed up immediately behind the first rank of Cherokee Wolf Warriors. Now it was King Jeremiah's turn, he walked down the ladder and took his place behind the Pipers as the Squire bellowed out, "ATTEND THE KING" and everyone waited as the remainder of the Cherokee Wolf Warriors disembarked the plane.
While everyone was intent on the pageantry of King Jeremiah, the Keeper's Squire was forming up The Warrior Force with The Lord Keeper, Prince John, at its head. The Keeper's Own Warrior, Prince Lewis, commanded the Warrior Force from the side.
As soon as the formation had disembarked, Squire, Lord Daniel of Dainispidal marched to the front, carrying his silver staff topped with the massive, Golden Wolf's Head. He held his staff high and commanded, "KING'S WARRIORS, PASS IN REVIEW!"
The formation of warriors crossed the parking area, split into two groups as they came around the Red Wolf, then reformed as one unit, ahead of Lord Keeper, Prince John and his Squire. Once in line, Squire Daniel raised his Wolf's Head Staff and bellowed, "PIPERS, SOUND CALL!"
The Pipers sounded the traditional Highland, "Call To Warriors". The music sounded eerie as the notes swirled around the parked airplanes.
By now, a large crowd had gathered, the local newspapers had been full of dire warnings about evil Norte Americanos coming to make trouble for their President, Adelaina Humberto.
Squire Daniel called out, "KING'S FORCES, ROUND THE SQUARE, CUT AND DIVIDE, MARCH!"
The Warriors stepped out in time to a lively march played by the Pipers, they marched around the square plane parking area, then divided in two directions and counter marched back in the direction they had just come, before reforming, one half of the force ahead of the King's Party and the other half behind. Squire Daniel twirled his staff in the air and Squire Jeremiah Long Branch repeated the move, they both called out, "FORWARD, MARCH. PROTECT THE KING"
The Wolf Force moved out and Daniel led them to the Distinguished Visitor's Terminal, where more Wolf Warriors surrounded the building.
John led his Knights Keepers inside the building and stationed them around the walls with their swords drawn and points on the floor. He went to the middle of the room and dropped to his right knee with his sword, The Sword of Truth, held high. The Eye of Scotland was glowing a dim red, letting John know there was mild danger about them.
Prince Lewis came up and knelt beside John, awaiting the King.
The King's Warriors and the Cherokee Wolf Warriors entered the room and stood guard at the four corners of the room, Squire Jeremiah Long Branch entered and pounded his staff on the floor, announcing, "HIS ROYAL HIGNESS, KING JEREMIAH FRANKLIN TATE, LORD OF THE WOLF KIND, ENTERS, ALL HAIL KING JEREMIAH!"
The entire party stamped their right foot and shouted, "HAIL KING JEREMIAH, LORD OF THE WOLF FOLK!"
The country's President had sent her third Secretary to meet this fool who called himself a king and he tried to brush aside the child standing in front of the man he was supposed to intimidate.
Squire Long Branch stood in his way and when the man tried to brush what appeared to be a child aside, there was, suddenly, a huge wolf, standing on its hind legs, snarling with long dripping fangs in his face. The secretary heard in his mind, "Go away, little man, lest you become My Lunch!"
The secretary, in his fright, soiled himself before he fainted.
Squire Jeremiah Long Branch ordered two warriors to carry away "This Fool".
Before he could say more, a large, muscular young Wolf approached and knelt before King Jeremiah, "My Lord, King, I prayed to the Lord of Wolves, Above Us All that you had arrived, I am Roberto, remember the skinny ragamuffin child you last saw when you were with us? I have grown some, My Lord. I welcome thee to our land, even if our President does not. We have prepared accommodations for you at one of our properties near this city. There are barracks for your soldiers and apartments for your officers and staff. Come, we have a fleet of buses and vans parked outside the Aero Porto."
Jeremiah asked, "First, how is Alberto?" I have brought my own doctors to care for him, they are all Wolf Folk!"
Roberto's eyes began leaking tears, "He is doing poorly, my Lord King, we must hurry."
Jeremiah turned to his namesake, Squire Jeremiah Long Branch and said, "Sound Officer's Call!"
The Squire ordered the Pipers to sound Officer's Call and, from all corners of the formation, they saw officers running towards the King's Position.
When they had all assembled, King Jeremiah said, "We are headed to buildings owned by Family Met. I want them guarded at all times, allow no one to enter or leave without you knowing them personally. Do not be afraid to mind blast those you do not recognize, the Alpha Wolf of Clan Domingo, a part of Family Met has been savagely injured by these people and we have come to assist them and help the young Lord Alpha recover from his injuries. Warrior Commander Daniel Carmichael, you have command of the Warriors, see to it they have quarters, The Clan Alpha's Consort, Prince Roberto will assign you a guide to lead you and the Warriors to their quarters. The Physicians, The Keepers and the Cherokee Wolf Warriors will accompany me."
King Jeremiah then turned and announced, "Lords Prince John and Prince Lewis, Attend Me!"
They got everyone sorted out and sent on buses to the building that were to house the Wolf Force. There were a dozen large SUVs waiting for the King and his party. They were whisked away at a high rate of speed, dodging in and out of the heavy traffic on a roundabout course across the city. Roberto grinned as he drove the heavy vehicle and said over his shoulder, "My Lord King, if that woman's secret policia can follow me, I had better turn in my Road Runner Badge."
Jeremiah just smiled as if he had not a care in the world, all the rest of them had a death grip on anything they could grab hold of!
Roberto brought the vehicle to a screeching stop in front of a large house with an underground garage, he blew the horn and the door went up immediately, then it banged closed, nearly catching the rear bumper of the SUV.
Roberto stepped from the car and bowed, pulling open the rear door. He said, "Welcome to Casa Met, My Lord King. Be welcome here in the knowledge that we accept thee as our Sovereign Lord and King."
They waited until the three physicians clambered out of the car and they all walked hurriedly up the stairs to the upper level. The hallway was lined with armed Wolf Warriors, each had a look of fear on their faces and the visitors could smell the stink of death hanging in the air.
They came to a door in the hallway, there was a small child kneeling in front of the door. He looked up with tears running down his face, and said, "Are you the King" Please save my big brother, Alberto, PLEEEEAASSSSSE, he is dying!"
The child collapsed in tears as Roberto picked him up and cuddled him in his arms. He said, "Lord King, Alberto's young brother, Gregor, has prayed at this door non-stop for the last three days, waiting for your arrival."
Jeremiah took the child from Roberto's arms and held him gently, "Young Prince of Wolves, we will do everything in our power to save your big brother. Come into his room with me and show me where your brother has been hurt."
The doctors knew their King was trying to distract the child from his fears and that he would shutter the child's mind against all they would have to do to save the young Wolf Lord's life.
It was truly a mess, Alberto had been shot in the left shoulder, bone and muscle tissue was horribly mangled. In a human, the wound would have been instantly fatal.
They cleaned the wound and delicately trimmed away the damaged flesh before they attempted to reattach the mutilated tendons and nerve bundles.
It took them six hours of brutal surgery and Jeremiah himself was holding the young Wolf Lord's mind from feeling the pain that was blasting through the medications.
Young Prince Gregor had crashed and slept on the couch, held by Lewis. Lewis had loved the child at first sight and would become the youngster's favorite "Uncle" for the rest of their long lives.
Finally, the Doctors were finished. The Chief Surgeon bowed deeply to Jeremiah and said, "My Lord, King of Wolves, the young Alpha Wolf will recover, he will require much therapy, but he should have no lingering problems with his injury."
He placed a bullet in Jeremiah's hand and continued, "Whoever shot this Wolf, intended for him to be dead, it is a hollow point bullet, intended to cause as much damage as possible. Oddly, it seems to be pure silver. Did they really think our kind would fall prey to that old wife's tale?"
Jeremiah just shook his head, wondering where all this was going to lead.
Just then, Roberto poked his head in the door, "mmmmmMMmMay IIII cccome in nnnnow?" He had been sent from the room, so his tears would not interfere with what the doctors had to do.
Jeremiah smiled at the terrified young Wolf and replied, "Yes, Come in Roberto and give your loved one a kiss on the forehead, he will recover soon and will be chasing you around the house."
The frightened young Wolf knelt at Jeremiah's feet and wrapped his arms around the Wolf King, "Lord King of our kind, IIiiI cancannot express mmmmy thhhankks, mmmy AAAALberto wwwwould hahaave dieeed bbbut fffor your assistannnce."
Jeremiah soothed the young Wolf and said, "Give thanks to the Lord of Wolves, Above Us All, He looked after Alberto until we could get here. Tomorrow, we shall sit down and discuss the situation you are in here and what we can do about it. For now, go tell your Alberto to get better soon."
By the next morning, Alberto was sitting up in bed, he was still pale, but that was improving by the hour. Lewis, Roberto and Gregor had spent the night at Alberto's bedside, pushing energy to him in hopes of speeding his recovery.
The doctors came in and shooed the three of them out of them room, telling to go get some breakfast.
Gregor, being a growing child, was interested in breakfast and he held Uncle Roberto's and Uncle Lewis' hand, pulling them to walk faster. As tired as he was, Lewis chuckled at the youngster's antics and even got Roberto to smile through the fog of his fatigue.
Jeremiah was sitting, enjoying a second cup of Argentinian coffee as they entered the room, Jeremiah skimmed Roberto's mind to know how Alberto was doing, Roberto smiled, he had detected Jeremiah's probe, indicating he had at least one of the Powers of the Ancients. Jeremiah heard in his mind, "My Lord King, I have all ten of the Powers of the Ancients, as does my Alberto!"
Jeremiah replied simply, "Good, we shall need all we have to finish this problem." Jeremiah continued, "Now where is the Prince Regent of Family Met, the Uncle of Lord Antonio?"
Roberto replied, "My Lord, we found his Uncle, Carlos, living under a bridge, his mind befuddled with drink. We have him in another place, carefully watched that he does not injure himself or take more alcohol."
Jeremiah was a bit confused, "I did not know alcohol affected the Wolf Folk."
Roberto replied, "If it is infused with drugs and the Wolf is unaware, the alcohol hides the task of the drugs, so, yes, it will affect us. Carlos is old and we suspect it was forced upon him by the government in an attempt to locate our Family Alpha, Lord Alberto."
Jeremiah replied, "Please bring Carlos to me, maybe he will tell me what has happened to my Adopted Son."
Shortly thereafter, Roberto was nowhere to be found as if he had disappeared into thin air. He was not to be found anywhere!
They all waited for about a half hour and two Wolf Warriors gently led an old man into the room. Had Jeremiah not known Carlos, he would have never recognized the old man. His face was a mass of wrinkles and his hands shook with palsy. The only thing that seemed alive in the old man was his eyes.
Carlos rushed forward to embrace Jeremiah and he asked, "Is Prince Tosco with thee?"
Jeremiah replied, "No, Carlos, old friend, he had to remain behind, someone must watch the store while us mice come to play."
Carlos collapsed in Jeremiah's arms, he wailed, "They took him, Lord King, they took Roberto from me and will imprison him at Castillo de Pinciera on the eastern slopes of the Andes."
Jeremiah's anger peaked and his wolf came forward as he said, "Get me the maps, I want to see where this place is located."
When the maps were brought, Jeremiah spotted an airport nearby, at Malalarque. He demanded information about that airport.
James could see that a plan was forming in his Monarch's mind. He leaned over the map and dropped the Eye of Scotland over the spot where the airport was shown, the stone began flashing red and green. He said, "The Eye of Scotland tells me there is danger there, but rescue is possible. Only the Red Wolf is capable of such a flight, the runway is very short!"
Jeremiah replied, "Fine, load the Red Wolf, we fly at first light tomorrow!"
James said, "No, my Lord, King of Wolves, thee shalt not fly with us, thy talents are better employed in soothing the witch in the Presidential Palace, the Warriors shall be led by The Lord Keeper and his Knight! I and Lewis will lead and bring Roberto, Prince Consort of Family Met, home!"
The Sword of Truth was shooting sparks from its tip and the Eye was glowing and angry red. Whoever confronted the angry Lord Keeper on the marrow had best run now, tomorrow morning would be too late!
Leaving sufficient Warriors to protect King Jeremiah, James ordered the remainder to board the aircraft. The Red Wolf would serve as their Command Post and Supply Depot.
The Control Tower refused permission for the Red Wolf to fly, so Command Pilot Prince Paul rolled the Red Wolf out to the runway and radioed the Tower, "Unless Thee Wish a Wrecked Airport, I suggest You Clear My Path. I and my Warriors are taking off NOW!"
With that, Paul nosed the Red Wolf out onto the runway and began pressing the throttles to bring the large aircraft up to take off power. Soon, the Red Wolf and its Air Escort Fighters had clawed their way into the skies above Buenos Aires and headed west.
They were quickly out of radar range of the airport control tower and he altered course for the small airport at Malalarque at the base of the Andes.
As they got closer to the mountains, James sent his mind out, ranging to the prison at Castillo de Pinciera. He could feel Roberto's mind, but it was weak and exhausted. He grabbed Lewis' hand and coupled their minds, again he drove his mind out and was able to make contact with the young Prince Consort of House Met with sufficient power to get through the blockade he had erected in his misery and pain.
The young Prince sent, "Please hurry, something is going on here and they are constructing a gallows in the courtyard. I am their only prisoner, so it must be for me!"
James swept across Pilot Paul's mind and, suddenly, the Red Wolf's airspeed was increased, the throttles were at EMERGENCY!
The rest of the small air fleet followed.
The air field at Malargue came into view and Paul radioed the tower, "This is Wolf Air Fleet Command Pilot, Wolf Prince Paul Jeremiah Tate, Commanding. Clear your runways, we are landing in ten minutes, failure to obey my command shall sentence you and all your men to an agonizing Death by Angry Wolves! DO IT NOW or suffer for all eternity!"
As they made their approach, they could see tuggers frantically hauling aircraft off the runway and clearing the parking pads.
Without further contact, Paul began his descent and prepared for landing. As soon as the Red Wolf had stopped rolling, both cabin doors flew open and the self-contained ladders were run out. Even before the ladders touched ground, Wolf Warriors were waiting in the doorway for the plane to be grounded.
As soon as the static energy was dissipated by the grounding cables, Wolf Warriors were jumping down to the ground, not bothering with the ladders and were formed up by their Sergeants.
They all had a job to do, first the tower was to be secured and then, the radio. Within ten minutes of landing, the airport was in control of the Wolf Warriors and the Argentine Army, who had been in charge, were shivering in fear as a snarling James dragged their Major into his own office by his shirt collar.
James was so angry, his Wolf was phasing in and out across his face!
He slammed the Major down into his chair and leaned across the man's own desk, his fangs distended and his eyes blazing red. He screamed at the man, who was in the process of wetting himself, "I want trucks to take us to the prison at Castillo de Pinciera and I want them NOW! I will leave some of my Warriors here to insure you do not try to call out for help. Unless you have a death wish, I suggest you obey them! We can read your little minds and hear your simple thoughts, DO NOT EVEN TRY TO DECEIVE US!"
He showed the frightened man his wolf, the man would spend years in treatment before he could sleep easy at night again! His nightmares would follow him for the rest of his life.
John was in contact with Roberto and urged him to remain calm, they were on their way up the mountains to rescue him.
When the prison radio operator attempted to reach the Airport, all he got was static. That was not unusual, so he was not concerned and did not bother reporting it to his commanding officer.
The race up the mountains took several hours, when, at last, the prison came in sight, John stopped the convoy and sent Warriors to cut the wires leading to the Radio Tower and blow up the diesel generator supplying electricity to the prison.
As soon as the lights went out, James led his force up to the prison gates. They ripped the gates from their posts and smashed the heavy wooden doors at the prison entrance.
They faced wide eyed Argentine Soldiers, who were in mortal fear for their lives and their souls as two hundred angry wolves descended upon them like something from an ancient nightmare out of Hell itsef!
Some of the Warriors had completed calling forth their Wolf and others were only halfway through ascension, it was as if the Hordes of Hell had descended upon the prison. All but the most foolhardy, threw down their weapons and begged mercy from these Warriors straight out from the Halls of Hell!
James ran through the prison, he knew where Roberto was being held.
The Prison Captain was just opening the door to Roberto's cell, with a pistol in his hand. He had orders to kill the prisoner if there were any attempt to rescue him.
With a single swipe of James' claws, the Captain was frantically trying to push his insides back into his sliced abdomen. He collapsed to the floor, not yet realizing he was dead already!
James used the Great Sword of Truth to sever Roberto's chains and the young Lord collapsed into James' arms. He had been cruelly treated, there were lash marks on his bare back and he had been refused treatment, food or even clothing against the frigid mountain air.
James pulled off his own cape and wrapped it around Roberto. The young wolf was freezing, but his own anger kept him going, he said to James, "I KNOW THEE ART WARMLY WELCOMED HERE, BUT WE MUST HURRY, I MUST SAVE MY ANTONIO'S FOLK, THEY ARE BEING KEPT IN A CATTLE PEN NEAR THE TOWN OF BOLIVAR. THERE IS AN AEROPORTO NEARBY!"
James sent to Prince Paul the information about the Cattle Pen as they hustled Lord Prince Consort Roberto out of the prison.
Warriors had loaned him clothing from their own packs. At least he looked decent, if not a little strange in the odd combinations of clothing. Roberto was a huge wolf and all the clothing was tight upon his body, but all the important parts were decently covered. If they were not, he could not have cared less, it was Antonio' folk who were important!
The young Wolf Lord was in considerable pain, he had been beaten regularly and refused food entirely during his captivity. He pushed back his hunger and pain and personally thanked each Wolf Warrior and Plane Crewmembers who had participated in his rescue.
They descended the mountains at a breakneck speed in a race to rescue Antonio's Folk before the government forces could do them hurt. They reached the valley floor in half the time it had taken the Warriors to ascend the mountains and they raced for their plane.
They left the small airport a shambles, inhabited only by frightened humans who preferred to crawl under a desk and hide. They were so frightened, all they could do was mew and whimper, human communication was beyond them. Few of them would ever again function as adults and all who survived their own attempted suicide would need Psychiatric care for the remainder of their lives.
The small air fleet took off for Bolivar and its airport, again, Paul ordered all throttles crammed to the stops. The hop to Bolivar consumed several hours and, again, they were refused permission to land.
With hardly a pause, they landed anyway!
Someone must have gotten a radio message out, when they landed, the airport and tower was completely abandoned. There was not a single human nearby. The Warriors commandeered trucks and were soon tearing the barricades down that held Antonio's Folk prisoner.
The Warriors gently carried the aged and the infirm, the children and the handicapped from the filthy cattle pens, where they had been left to die from the elements.
Most were wolf, but there were a few humans among them. A teen human boy came up to James and knelt, "Please señor, are you the King Wolf?"
James pulled the youngster to his feet and replied, "No, I am not the King, I am his Warrior Knight, I am called The Lord Knight Keeper, bearer of the Sword of Truth and The Eye of Scotland!"
The boy replied, "pppPlease, llLord Knight, my little bbbrother is near death, cccan you save him?"
James didn't inquire how it was the youngster spoke perfect English, he only asked, "Where is your Brother?
The boy replied, "He is here, my Lord Knight, I have made a bed for him in this old cattle feeder."
James mind sent for the Chief Surgeon to attend the boy, NOW! The Surgeon looked the boy over and said to James, "My Lord, I cannot save the boy. He has been brutally raped and abused, there is too much damage and he has already gone into shock. I might be able to keep him alive to return to the City. There, you will have time to change him, My Lord, only you have the power to save the child. That is the only path that can save this child's life."
James sat on the ground and pulled the older brother to him, "Son, we cannot save your brother, but, if you give us permission, we can change his nature to that of our own, the Wolf Folk."
James brought forth his own wolf to show the boy and the boy replied, "Anything, My Lord of Wolves, just save Richie's life."
He then looked down shyly and said, "Would you change me also, our parents were murdered by the Argentine Police and we are alone, I am but fourteen and Richie is only six. Please Sir Wolf Knight, help us."
James flashed the boy's mind and saw with horror, what had been done to them and their family.
He said gently to the boy, "Would you both become mine own sons. I will care for you anyway, but you and I are much alike, will you both become my sons?"
The older boy's name was Kenneth, Ken whispered to Richie and the child could only shake his head in a "yes".
Kenneth stood ramrod straight and said to James, "My Lord of Wolves, our answer is that we will willingly become your sons and be proud to be wolf! And we shall carry your name in honor as well"
James reached out and gathered the boy into his arms, starting a flow of tears from Kenneth that flooded James' tunic. He looked over at little Richie and the child was smiling, despite his awful pain.
They got all the people loaded into the airplanes, it was crowded, but they refused to leave anyone behind, even the escort fighters were pressed into service to carry the refugees.
The planes were loaded to capacity and, perhaps, a bit more. The pilots could feel the drag as they raced down the runway and clawed their way into the sky. They set course for Buenos Aires and, again, had to threaten the tower in order to be allowed to land.
James had mind sent ahead to alert the doctors about Lord Prince Consort Roberto and the two human brothers, and that he would change them both himself!
When are human authorities going to learn that the Wolf Folk mean them no harm and would protect any or all of them against harm or hurt? The two brothers, Kenny and Richie will become important partners to Lord Knight Keeper James and each boy will bear the Historic Swordmark on their foreheads.