“Tell me Tarik why should I bow to any of your demands?” Daniel asked smugly.
“Because you are a man of reason” Tarik replied “Like your brother and Father you know that war serves no purpose”
“Perhaps” Daniel agreed “But Tarik you can hardly call it war, you have a handful of men in a castle that hardly strikes fear into my army”
“But it should” Tarik smiled “Don’t mistake our size for weakness, if war came will I admit it would not be a war of great numbers it would be war none the less. Let me explain. Grimstead is a wide open indefensible plain. It has gentle rolling hills and a number of very scenic valleys but when it comes to defence it is lacking in all but the basic’s. It has two small barracks and just two castles neither of which where built as fortress’s. If war where to come you’d have no-where to hide your population, your castles are far to small to hold them all and small units of my men would cause havoc though your villages massacring your population running rings around your army who simply would be unable to be in all places at once, destroying your moral.”
“However alternatively, my castle was build with defence in mind, with concentric wall’s, its outer wall protects the farms that make my castle totally and completely self sufficient. My entire population can and do live within that wall and could continue to do so for decades. Likewise my Castle is nestled in the mountains with just one small valley entrance barely wide enough to get a single wagon though never mind an army”
“Quite simply providing the perfect choke point and killing ground for the archers on my walls. Now if you wanted to sacrifice a few thousand men though my valley, in the small hope that a few hundred make it though without being rained down on by arrows feel free to try” Tarik replied “Perhaps you’d win in time but I think you’d find the cost far too high”
“So what do you suggest?”
“I’ve told you I want the woodsman” Tarik smiled.
“Why him surely he can’t have done that much damage?”
“He didn’t” Tarik replied, “It’s a matter of pride now.. surely one woodsman isn’t worth war?”
“Of course not, but Duncan only gave up the crown on the condition that I don’t hand him over to you”
“Well you do have a problem” Tarik smiled. “I tell you what though I have a small solution..Grimstead holds the land from Graymont upto thorn bridge correct?”
“Yes, it’s typically been considered under the control of Graymont”
“Lar’s live on this band of land correct?”
“Yes in the mountains there’s a small glade” Daniel nodded seeing where Tarik was going.
“Give me the land from where the pass enters the mountains to the bridge where my land already begins and the family’s on it and we’ll consider it even, let me worry about collecting Lars”
“Arh” Daniel nodded “I give you the land and you’ll deal with the woodsman yourself”
“Exactly surely losing one small family shouldn’t damage you too badly”
“Not at all I have no-one controlling that estate at present anyway”
“Then is it a deal?”
“Yes I believe it is” Daniel smiled “but what of Kaitlyn and the girls? Raeanne Vaux lives on that land too, Orrick may become problematic if something was to happen to her”
“I have no intention of harming the women” Tarik smiled “Im not that sort of man”
“Very well” Daniel agreed “Then we had a deal”