Tuesday, November 1, 2022





Chapter 4
Ragnar Khan

Ragnar Khan

"Silence! --- SILENCE!," demanded The Guru. "His Supreme Excellency, The Ragnar Khan will speak wisdom to you."

"Household Guardsmen! The time we have waited for is imminent. General Pettygree’s Imperialist Army plans to visit us. His advance units are even now at Fort Albert while more regiments have disembarked in Bombay Harbour. However, we will not wait for them here in our mountain stronghold. Instead, we will move south through the Pass vanishing within the ancient Secret Cavern exiting onto the plain below to destroy them all forever." 

A tumultuous roar of approbation arose.

"Our Army is assembling as I speak. Indeed, an ally approaches whom I must now greet. So for a brief time I must leave you. Meanwhile, you my Guards, must prepare spiritually, physically and materially to repel the vile trespassers. Be my extreme example of bravery and skill. Our cause is righteous. When I call upon you to crush them, be ready!”

Loud affirmations, praise, oaths and bloodthirsty epithets arose from the multitude.


"Take me to my Fortress Tower."

Silently to himself Ragnar Khan said, "My allies approach."

Continuing interiorly, "Now the third player, 
Villainovich, arrives for The Great Game between Pettygree and I. His contingent is smaller than agreed upon though. Is this minimalism or duplicity? Disappointment ignites within my heart. However, we shall see.”

"Husband, I sense malevolence."

“Steady my dear. For the moment we are all cherished friends.”

“Da, Antonovich but he exudes a….”

“Distinguished yet frightful bearing," whispered the Countess.

“Not now dear one. Not now.”

“Count Colonel Villainovich and Countess Vanya Elizaveta! Welcome to Vandahar Palace. I beg you to accept my humble hospitality. Please enter for a poor if hopefully tolerable refreshment and rest. Tomorrow evening a banquet with entertainments will be held in your honour.”

“We are grateful for your infinite kindness Ragnar Khan,” said Count Villainovich.

Ragnar Khan's Entertainment The Next Day

“Ragnar Khan, we gratefully thank you for that prodigious feast,” said the Count.

"You honoured me indeed. I am unable to offer more than simple fare in these mountains. Yet the mature buzzard eggs and goat's eyes are unique delicacies we proudly offer on special occasions such as this one."

"The vodka accompaniment made them ed...., ah, especially tasteful."

"Thank you. Next, would you please accompany me to the promised entertainment?”

“Welcome to my arena." 

"It's poor resemblance to those of ancient Rome is pitiable, but they did not have Valsun.”

“Valsun, your Excellency?,” asked Countess Vanya Elizaveta.”

“Yes, a very rare creature acquired from the Chinese Emperor. You will see her in a few minutes. An amazing acquisition, I assure you. We call her Val.”

 “Husband look.”

“What is the meaning of this? Is that woman Val?”

“Not at all Countess. She is a criminal found guilty of the high crime of betrayal; treason, if you will. She is therefore an unpardonable unbeliever in my just and holy cause.”

"What is her crime, if I may inquire?"

"Nonconformity of thought leading to forbidden speech opposing our beliefs. Our code of laws demand that intolerant speech traitors be executed by being torn asunder. Unity of thought, belief and behavior is our strength. Conformity is essential."

"May I present, the Chinese dragon, Valsun? Lovely and remarkable isn’t she?”


“Your Excellency. Would you be so kind as to excuse me from this sport? The high mountain air is suppressing my breath. The only remedy is to take to my bed. Please accept my sincere and distressed apology.”

“Yes of course Countess. I am to blame for not suggesting more rest to acclimate you to our thin high mountain air. By all means retire. Tomorrow will surely see you restored."

Piteous screams and shrieks soon came from the arena as the dragon approached, tore the prisoner apart and then ate the red-haired young woman piece by piece. Finally only the spectator's barbaric tumultuous roaring, laughter and cheering were heard as the woman's intolerable thoughts were forever silenced.

1. Previous chapters in sequence:
Chapter 1: At The Gallop

Chapter 2: Half A League to the Fort

Chapter 3: Fort Albert

2. Chapter 5: The Blood Moon is in production. The anticipated release date is early December 2022. 

3. Meanwhile the General welcomes your remarks and sentiments at Comments below.

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