Then, upon the morn of the first day of the second month of the Great Land of Einherjar the warning bell tolled. The bell rang loud and strong and carried out upon the wind to all those who resided within the realm.
Val and Drago, who had been enjoying a breakfast within the clan hall with the Guardians and a few clan members, jumped up from the table and made their way to the door to see who was ringing the great bell.
Drago was first out the door with Val just behind him. The guardians and members who had also been enjoying a morning together had gathered behind them, all crowding out onto the steps as best they could.
At the bell stood Ris, the handsome centaur who had joined their ranks only some time ago. Upon seeing the gathering Ris stopped ringing the bell. Drago was first to speak. "Ris, why have you rung the warning bell my friend?"
Ris, still nearly out of breath from his run to reach the bell, breathed "M'Lord, there has been an attack upon several of our farms. A rival clan has arisen and means to take occupation upon our lands."
The crowd gasped. Val looked at them with care and said "Worry not. This will be dealt with. For we may be small in numbers but we are strong in heart."
Drago added "And I have been hard at work to protect us when this day inevitably came. We will not stand alone."
He continued, "Each of you take word to your neighbors. Make sure all of Einherjar are aware of this happening. Tell them to make safe their homes and gather their weapons. Those who can fight should gather here in the courtyard just after the noon meal. We will have more news for them at that time. For now go, make your homes safe and spread the word."
He turned to Crista and Dragonna, "Guardians, we will need your here at the keep. Would you kindly accompy Val and myself to the war room?"
Crista and Dragonna nodded and turned to walk back within the hall and head upstairs. Dragonna looked at Val with concern. Val nodded in understanding as Dragonna turned and continued inside.
Val once again turned to the crowd. "I know this is upsetting and you all have concerns. I know you came here seeking peace. Have faith in Einherjar. Believe in what we stand for. Believe in our bonds. This will hold us strong. Einherjar believes in you." With this she too turned to head for the war room.
Drago turned to Ris who was still gathering his breath, "Ris you have done well this day my friend. Come inside and have something to eat before you head back to your home to prepare."
Ris said "M'Lord, I have people preparing and protecting my home. I have no need to return at this time. I am at your service."
"First eat and rest yourself." Drago said. "I may have need of your fast legs soon and we will need you at full strength for what is to come."
Ris nodded and followed Drago within the hall. Drago spoke again, "I must join the others upstairs but sit, eat, and gather your strength. I will speak with you again soon." With this he turned to join the others upstairs.
Drago, Val, Dragonna, and Crista sat at the great table discussing the possible options. Drago and Val wanted to make sure this was handled properly. Val spoke first of possible diplomacy with the opposing clan and they discussed this at length. Finally coming to the conclusion this would not be likely.
Drago then began to speak of possible friendly lands who may be willing to lend assistance. He turned to Crista and asked "Have the owls been trained?"
Crista nodded and said "We have 2 that are well trained, the others are still untested."
Drago said "Two is perfect. That is all I shall need at this time. Please take this down and send it to whom I ask."
Crista pulled out her scrolls and quill and began taking down the letter that Drago then dictated to her. The letter simply explained in short form the situation and asked if the recipient would be open to assisting. He then gave her the names of the Great King to the East and the Great Southern King to send them to.
"Please send them immediately." Drago asked. Crista nodded and went to the balcony to call her two best owls to her. They would take the messages and wait for a response as they were trained.