Titanna stormed out of the Inner Sanctum in a huff and her aides and bodyguards trailed after her. She found several of her men waiting for her at the courtyard in front of the Citadel.
"What is the situation now?" She asked the group of anxious soldiers and clerks that saluted her when she came up to them.
"Not good, my Lady! " A portly male replied. He was well dressed and had a look of a merchant. "The slaves and monsters had broken free from their pens and had murdered several guards and handlers! W- we think someone inside let them loose!"
"The slaves are also holding hostages!" The manager said. "They have broken out from three pens which make their numbers close to three hundred. And several monsters for are rampaging around the city streets now!"
"And the city guards?" Titanna asked as they waited for her carriage to arrive. "What have they been doing?"
"So far the city guard had closed the area into the slave quarters," A soldier replied. "But other than that they are not taking any actions!"
"What?" Titanna glared at the soldier who bowed away from her anger. "Who is in charge?"
"No one..." The soldier said. "Knight Captain Judis was supposed to be in command... But some soldiers came and took him away..."
"Those old bastards sure act fast!" Titanna frowned. "This must be their ploy from the start!"
"Give the order out to suppress the rioting slaves!" Titanna said. "Have the next senior officer take over command and form a monster hunting party to kill or recapture the loose beasts! And give a bounty to the Adventurer's Guild for them to help too!"
"Yes, my Lady!" The soldiers saluted and set off to carry out her orders.
Titanna turned to her female House Guards and said, "Find out where had they taken the Knight Captain to! And request all the rest of the Knights of Silver to meet me at the slave pens!"
Titanna looked back at the Inner Sanctum and cursed the two cunning old elves, knowing that the slaves escaping from the pens were their work.
"Let's go!" Titanna said as her carriage came. "We need to stop the riots fast!"
Norshelm, Trade District, Slave Pens
Qiem gave a cheerful smile as he watched dozens of slaves armed with weapons taken from their previous guards. He had waited in this spot for a couple of days, just for this exact moment to happen just as oracled by his Mistress.
The rioting slaves rushed another group of guards without fear and both sides clashed heavily. Other slaves took the opportunity to free the other slaves locked in the pens who were awaiting transportation to other markets.
Qiem giggled as he watched severed body parts and blood flew all over. He thought of how his mistress's words had come true and he removed a golden idol from his pocket and gently caressed the twin proud peaks of the figure.
He took a small knife and prickled his fingertip, drawing a bead of blood out before he carefully dripped the crimson drop on the idol's head.
He hid the idol into a crevice of the wall of the building he was hiding in and use his blood draw several symbols and runes on the wall while he giggled and started chanted.
All over the city, dozens of similar rituals were being performed. The sudden riots made it easy for cultists to perform their rituals without interference from the City Guards.
At three locations around the city, dozens of cultists stood in a circle and without the need for cooridination, the cultists instinctively started their large scale rituals.
Using their own blood, arcane runes and complex spells were drawn. Once the spell was completed, the cultists disrobed and stood embraced each other naked and started to engage in sexual acts with each other while screaming in ecstasy.
"Hail Mistress... of Desires! Hail... Daughter of Lust! All Hail... the Queen... of PLEASURE!!!"
Norshelm, Rothschild Estate
Mills stood at the balcony and looked at the distant city. He frowned as he noticed something strange over the skies. Dark stormy clouds appeared to be gathering so rapidly that even a layman to magic like himself, could tell some arcane powers were at work.
Flashes of eye searing lightning could be seen flickering among the storm clouds and the clouds spun and rolled in the skies above the city, turning the area dark and gloomy.
Mills stepped back as a reddish glow appeared to descent from the clouds and encircled the entire city. "Holy... fuck!"
He flinched back and closed his eyes as the red glow seemed to slam over him. After a couple of seconds, he opened one eye cautiously and peeked around, finding nothing out of the ordinary.
"What the hell was that?" Mills whispered as he looked around his surroundings, seeing the strange eerie glow appeared to be held back by something from the Estate.
Tyrier and some other Marines suddenly appeared next to him and they ogled at the scene. "What happened?"
"Hell if I know!" Mills replied. "Some weird mojo shit is happening at the city!"
Everyone turned their attention outside. "I think the Rothschild's has some kind of magical ward protecting us from that... Whatever that is..."
Just at this time, they saw several mounted cavalries rushing in from the gates and headed straight towards the Estate's barracks where confused soldiers were staring at the spectate happening around them.
"Don't think that is a good sign!" Mills commented offhandedly. "Better get the boys geared up!"
Tyrier nodded in agreement, "Got it! Also, see if you contact Orwell Command!"
Mills nodded and turned to his men yelling, "Priority One! Full combat loads!"
The marines hearing his order ran back towards their temporary quarters yelling, "P One! P One!"
Those resting in the bunks were roused out by the yells and they quickly donned their uniforms and laced up their boots. Grabbing their weapons, armor, and gear, they ran out to the allocated rally and formed up into ranks.
Mills joined the troops a couple of minutes later and did a quick inspection with the other senior NCOs.
Lieutenant Trism joined the men and he quickly gave a rundown of their situation to the gathered troops. "Alright, men! We just received word that a whole bucket of shit had just spilled over the city!"
"Seems like Lady Titanna's political enemies had struck back," Trism announced. "As you know, the Rothschilds primarily deals with slaves. Her enemies had just retailated by released those slaves out into the city, which something akin to a slave revolt is happening now!"
"We suspect that they will use the giuse of restoring order to the city and let in their own troops to crush the rioting slaves and at the same time do a coup and force the Lady Titanna down from her seat."
"Now, we might not like slavers but High Command loves her," Trism stated matter of factly. "So, for now, we will be on full combat standby. If needed, we will use the MRAPs to extract her out!"
"Sir! What about the clouds and red... glow over the city?" Mills asked.
Trism turned to look at the skies and said, "We have no intel on that yet, but it is clearly magical in nature! From what I can see, I suspect it is some kind of spell to obstruct the city defenders, making it hard for them to coordinate or even block their magic."
"Now, we will coordinate with the House Guards here," Trism turned to Mills and Tyrier. "Support them in defending this place, just in case."
"NCOs!" Mills stepped up and yelled. "You heard the man! Double the watch and await further orders!"
"Sir?" Mills caught up with Lt Trism as he was headed towards the Rothschild's barracks. "Can we get through to Orwell Command?"
Trism nodded. "I spoke with them earlier. They are sending in some air support. ETA four hours..."
"Four hours?" Mills frowned as he eyed the reddish glow outside that had formed a dome around the grounds of the Rothschild Estate. "I don't like this..."
"I know, Sergeant," Trism agreed with the hooman. "I will try to get more information regarding our situation."
As they were speaking, a commotion suddenly happened among the Rothschild's soldiers. It appeared a fight had occurred among the soldiers.
Mills and Trism watched on in confusion as several soldiers being restrained by other soldiers. "What is happening?" Mills asked one of the soldiers there.
"We do not know either!" The frantic looking soldier replied. "They were reporting about the situation in the city and suddenly they started muttering something and started attacking people!"
Mills frowned at the scene, seeing five men were needed to hold down one of the crazed soldiers who was laughing madly.
"Give in to the Queen! The Mistress rewards!" They yelled while foaming at their mouths. "Join us!"
Trism's expression slowly changed as he watched the soldiers subduing the crazed elves. He suddenly grabbed Mills by his shoulder and said urgently, "This looks like some cult has taken over their minds!"
"Brainwashing?" Mills asked in surprised. "How did they do that?"
"That is your answer!" Trism pointed to the reddish skies.
Titanna hissed in pain as she crawled out from the overturned carriage, supported by her personal guard. The first thing she noticed was her surroundings were gloomy and a sharp pain at her side where she hit herself.
She felt her necklace she usually wore biting cold against her flesh and she pulled it out and before her eyes, the charm turned into dust and crumbled away. "A magic attack!"
Her guards rallied around her while some others checked the wreckage for any survivors. "What happened?"
Her guys pointed to the dark reddish skies in answer and she looked up and saw a slow spinning vortex of dark clouds above her. "What in the heavens is that?"
"THE MISTRESS REWARDS!" A cry from the side caught her attention and she saw several townspeople charging towards her. "JOIN US!"
"Back off!" Her guards drew their swords and brandished them before the gathering crowd. "Back!"
"What?" Titanna looked on in confusion before turning around in shock as her coachman wrestled against the guard that providing first aid.
"THE MISTRESS REWARDS!" The elderly coachman who served the Rothschilds all his life suddenly slammed a small knife at the unprotected throat of the guard.
The guard fell back gurgling and clutching his ruined throat, blood flowing everywhere as he thrashed wildly.
The other guards with their attention diverted away by the sudden death of one of their own gave the crowd the chance to close in. "THE MISTRESS REWARDS!"
Titanna drew the sword from the fallen guard and ran the blade through the coachman who watched her grow up with tears in her eyes as he tried to stab her with his knife.
"Their will has been controlled by some spell!" Titanna yelled. She hacked down a matronly looking woman who gave a warm smile at her as she died. "Give in to the Queen!"
"Retreat to the Citadel!" Titanna ordered as she saw more and more people appeared and her guards were getting overrun. "RUN!"
Titanna put her words into action and ran as fast as she could in her long silks. She cursed as she wished that she had worn trousers and armor instead of this clumsy dress!
Her remaining guards acted as a rearguard, flending off the crude attacks from the townspeople.
As Titanna neared the Citadel, she noticed the people seemed to have gone crazy. Yet there were some still sane but they were getting dragged down and ripped to bloody shreds by the crazed mobs.
The Citadel guards seeing the strange happenings had barred the gates and bowmen manning the walls. Titanna nearly had an arrow shot through her as a nervous archer released an arrow at her approach.
"OPEN THE GATES!" She yelled, ignoring the arrow. The small side gate creaked open as the guards recognized their Lady and she quickly entered with the remainder of her guards.