AN: This is a drabble featuring two Guild Wars 2 characters I ship 🙂 Benn Tenstrikes and Demmi Beetlestone. 🙂 I know a lot of people ship him with Eilye Jeyne and her with Tybalt Leftpaw but I find these two to have a connection being as they’ve been close due to her fleeing Kryta from her father. He’s a flirtacious mercenary and a member of the Order of Whispers. She joins the Order after her time with the hero and Tybalt. These two met when she was first trying to flee her father. They were together until he was tricked and she was kidnapped. I’d like to think they have a lasting friendship from these events that will eventually turn into romance. Quick note: I’m sure some of these details here in the story don’t match the game’s story. I may eventually edit it to fit better into the game itself but for now consider this an early draft lol. Anyway, hope you enjoy!
The constant creeping in the shadows left Demmi a tattered mess, one so used to the luxuries of the rich thrust into a world much different than the one she once belonged. There wasn’t a choice in the matter however if she favored her life. Demmi knew that well and she made her choice to seek the help of the Order of Whispers. She had to run from those who wished to use her. Wished to harm her. Wished her dead.
Demmi had to flee from her father or else she would not live to see another sunrise in the sky.
In the cover of darkness, the mercenary band she’d been trusted to made their camp. Many of their guards were already combing the area, guaranteeing without a doubt they were safe in their chase for the daughter of the Beetlestone family. The leader of the band, Benn Tenstrikes, sported a yawn as he stretched in the evening air, his men reporting their findings before returning to their duties. It seemed there wasn’t a trace of a pursuit but the mercenary knew better than to let his guard down, especially when the one heading the hunt was of the upper class with coin to spare on what he wanted. The band had the most precious of cargo to protect after all.
Another yawn threatened to escape his lips as Benn raised a glance to the woman curled up in the shadows, her arms hugging around herself to fight off the night’s chill. She had yet to complain about the lack of fire, the light of the crackling flames a clear indication of where the band would be housed up that evening. It was a welcome surprise to the mercenary, his usual dealings with those of Demmi’s status leaving much to be desired. The wealthy tended to be spoiled brats who expected every little thing to be handed to them on a shimmering, silver platter.
But not Demmi Beetlestone. She was something different. Something stronger.
Though she had the look of a pampered princess, the Beetlestone daughter was a clever sort. She had the ability and the brains to sneak out from her father’s gaze and seek out the help of the Order of Whispers. With her connections she was taken into the custody of Benn Tenstrikes, his sworn duty to get the brave lass to the Chantry of Secrets without delay. With his blade, he would carve Demmi a path to safety. There was no way he’d break that promise.
With a quick stride to her side, Benn said with his confidence brimming each syllable, “we’ll be poised within the walls of the Chantry of Secrets within the day Lady Beetlestone. It will only be a little further on. The watch has made sure we’re safe for the night so-.”
The girl lifted her head at his voice, a giggle rising from her throat as she grinned, “I thought I told you already Benn, it’s Demmi.”
Again, it was so odd for the wealthy sort to drop all formalities when dealing with those lacking in their stature. “O-Of course, I seem to keep forgetting that-.”
“No need to be formal with me Benn. Be yourself,” she hummed, a hint of stress speckled in her gaze despite her own confident tone. “Be the strong, courageous, charming man I know you can be.”
“Heh, you flatter me my dear, stop,” Benn chimed with a grin of his own, his stance showing off his muscled physique beneath his mercenary armor. With a quick flex of his arms, he continued with a wink. “Seriously though, flatter me more. Fan the flames of my ego more and more.”
Demmi bursted into a fit of laughter as the mercenary took a seat beside her, the two of them exchanging smiles to one-another as the breeze settled through camp. Everything seemed fine…until fear bubbled up in those wide eyes of the Beetlestone daughter, her gaze quick to look away from her protector in her voyage for freedom. Benn raised a brow at her reaction, eyeing her carefully as he waited for her words.
“I-I really wanted to thank you-and your crew. I-I don’t know where I’d be if not for your efforts in bringing me to the Chantry of Secrets,” she spoke with a seriousness in her voice, one that sought to escape her worst fears. There was pain from her past as well as the looming uncertainty of her future.
“No thanks needed. My band and I are getting you to safety, no doubt about that,” Benn added as he leaned back, his gaze to the stars above as he recalled the mission and the reports given beforehand. He was no stranger to the Beetlestone name, nor of Demmi’s father. He was a wicked man who did anything in his power to get what he wanted. Benn could only imagine how the young daughter played into his plans, the reasons for her fears bubbling up inside her quivering form. It was up to him to protect her. His mercenary band would see to it she was escorted to safety. But would that be enough to ease her troubled heart? Benn doubted that very much. “Hey, did any of your fancy tutors ever teach you how to wield a weapon? Or were they too convinced a lady of the house had no business with the blade or the gun?”
“Weapons?” Demmi repeated, returning her gaze to the mercenary at her side. “N-No, I’ve never been trained with weapons. I-I suppose my father had his reasons for not wanting me to learn.”
The answer sprung Benn to his feet, the Beetlestone daughter’s eyes wide as she watched the man offer a hand to her. Hesitant at first, she lightly placed her palm into his and he pulled her up to his side. His confident grin painted his lips as he then reached for his back, slipping a rifle from its holster before holding it out to his companion. “Well, now’s as good a time as any huh? We want to guarantee the lovely lady is protected after all. Just a little added measure to make sure not a single hair is harmed on your pretty little head.”
“R-Really? You want me to learn to shoot a rifle?” The girl repeated, her cheeks tinted pink at the charming words while she took hold of the weapon in question. It was lighter than she ever thought possible, the elongated barrel of the rifle balanced in her grasp as she studied its markings. It seemed so unreal in her hold, she wasn’t sure what to do with such a deadly device. “I-I’m not sure I-.”
“Come now, Brave girl. You’ll be fine,” Benn said with a chuckle as he stepped behind Demmi’s stance and brought his arms around her, lifting up her own arms to show her the proper hold of the weapon. He made sure everything was balanced, perfect. Mindful of her strength, he guaranteed the hold was perfect for the shivering girl he guarded. “See? You’re already learning. Keep your elbows here, frame your shoulders, you’ve got to be careful not to lower or heighten you position too much or your shot may end in disaster.”
“R-Right,” she nodded along with his instructions, trying to feel comfortable in such an unfamiliar position. It was so strange holding a weapon she’d never been truly introduced to, the teachings a gateway into a future where she’d have to rely on such artillery to protect herself. Any innocence she knew as a child however was long gone anyway. Her father made sure of that. The only thing remaining from her past being the necklace around her neck, a gift from her late mother. The lessons in weapons was truly needed. She had to protect herself. She had to live. “H-How’s this?”
“Looking good Demmi. You’re fitting well into that hold of yours,” the mercenary chimed, as he slowly pulled his arms away from hers. She remained strong and still, poised for battle as she prepared for her next instruction. Benn then slipped close to the end of the barrel, his gaze settled on the girl as he continued. “Now what’s your going to do is rest your finger on the trigger there and aim carefully for your target. Keep your stance strong here because the gun may force back on you if you’re not prepared. You’ll want to-.”
It was then that Benn noticed the safety was no engaged, his eyes wide as he reached to adjust. However, he was no match for Demmi as she listened intently to the instructions, her finger feeling for the trigger and unfortunately providing too much power into her touch. The gun resonated with a wicked boom as it shot towards the trees, Benn barely able to move his body from the impact of the bullet. He could feel the burning of his ear as he cursed and tumbled onto the ground, a hand feeling the grazed injury from the shot.
Demmi Beetlestone stood in horror as she lowered the gun and eyed the man on the ground, tears threatening to fall as she examined her guardian. “B-Benn, I’m so sorry! I didn’t mean to! Oh goodness, are you alright?”
“C-Calm down, I’m fine. I-I just got too close to the barrel is all. It was my fault for not properly checking the weapon before handing it off to you,” he managed to say through his heaving breaths, the sensation of blood forming under his fingers as he felt the wound on his ear. It was nothing too serious but it was surely adding to Demmi’s guilt. “N-No worries here.”
“You’re bleeding!” Demmi gasped.
“Just a flesh wound, no big deal Demmi. Not your fault!” Benn reassured her, climbing to his feet before carefully prying his rifle from her frozen fingers. He then set the safety on the rifle before slipping it back into his holster with a hearty chuckle. “P-Perhaps we’ll try a blade instead.”
“I-I think I’m done with weapons,” the girl whimpered with a sigh. “I almost killed my own protector.”
“Heh, well if that’s how you treat your allies, you must be vicious to your enemies,” the mercenary joked, Demmi’s frown shifting his tone completely. “T-Too soon?”
“P-Perhaps,” Demmi muttered with a nod. “Thank you Benn for trying…even if it did almost end with you losing an ear.”
With a grin, the mercenary answered, “it’s no worries Brave girl. I’ll stand by to protect you so you won’t have a need for weapons. And besides, I’m sure I’d look just as handsome even without the ear.”
“Of course you’d say that,” she managed a laugh as she settled down in her seat once more, curling up to fight away the chill of the night. “Charming as ever, my protector. Thank you Benn. Now let me see that ear of yours so we can clean up the wound. I may not do well with the weapons but I can at least do that much.”
With a nod of approval, Benn took a seat beside the girl and allowed her to tend to his bleeding ear, hoping the excitement of the evening would not escalate any further than their own interactions. “As you wish, milady. As you wish.”