llamaenterhear
Username: Password:

Author Topic: Coldforged - Shadows of War: Chapter 1 - Ûr-Keldon  (Read 24266 times)

0 Members and 1 Lonely Barbarian are spying on this topic.

Offline Ancient Gamer

  • Hammer of the Citadel
  • Emperor
  • ****
  • Posts: 3880
  • Enough about you, let's talk about me!
  • Awards 2013 Best Play By Post Game Elite Item Guild Elite Systems Guild Elite Plot Guild Hall of Heroes 10 Golden Creator
    • Coldforged Home
    • Awards
Coldforged - Shadows of War: Chapter 1 - Ûr-Keldon
« on: August 08, 2005, 04:01:17 PM »
Outside the Maldauer Swamp Fortification
At the border between the Kingdom Province of Ardamien and the Imperial Province of Belemar


The thunder of sorcery rolled over the swamp island from which the battered walls of the Keep known as the Maldauer Fortification rose. Outside its walls, on the battleground, were untold thousands of men, marching in columns, chanting ancient battle hymns. Insults were exchanged as they approached each other, their myriad voices full of hate, panic and fear. Suddenly a blast of bright fire engulfed a company of soldiers wearing regal black Ardamian clothing, obliterating the warriors before they had a chance to react, and a mere half second later a wash of crackling heat from the blast hit the nearby columns of men who were thrown off their feet. More Ardamians arrived, their ranks glittering with weapons, looking like the iron fanged maw of a giant snake. For hours they fought and only when night fell over the battlefield did they finally withdraw to sleep and eat. Random flashes of light from alchemists’ fire and fiery spells occasionally flared through the darkness, but eventually silence settled on the swamp. While priests retrieved the wounded, carrion birds and nameless beasts feasted on the corpses that littered the swamp, and looters plied their ignoble trade, heartlessly slicing of fingers and in other ways mutilated the dead to get at their valuables. The first day of the Ardamian offensive had utterly failed and thus more nights of starvation were in store for the guardians of the crucial Maldauer fortification.

Through the pallor of smoke the harbinger birds wheeled. Their calls raised a shrill chorus above the cries of wounded and dying soldiers. They were six in number and had been in the skies throughout the entire day. Far below, on the battlefield outside the battered walls of the Maldauer Fortification, other carrion birds were feasting on the fallen, but the Harbingers had no interest; they had only come to bear witness to the Imperial onslaught. Then a faint sound rose from the northwest; a keening, forlorn sound to which the handful of men still awake turned their attention for a brief second. When the sound had died, only the Harbinger Birds still paid it any attention, and with mighty beats of their wings they started their journey home, for it was the keen of their new masters, hundreds of miles away.

The Empire has struck and the Kingdom reels from its mighty blow. The line of Keldon runs weak in the King’s veins and most of his heirs are mindless buffoons or dangerous youths drunk with power. The Kingdom needs you now in its darkest hour, lest the Imperials swallow this land, like they have swallowed so many others.

A dry voice answered from the other end of oblivion: “Why should we care?”

-------------------------------------

On the Slopes of Mount Keadle
The Eastern Cyllereans
Close to the Tarnil lake in Ardamien


Screams of excruciating pain and intolerable suffering was combined with the whispering voices of women. Needles pierced flesh that knives had flayed, sewing ancient skin in place. It all seemed like a dream, but a part of Domunsoka’s consciousness had returned and half awake he listened to nearby voices as he watched the ghostly figures move through the room, removing patches of skin from a carcass on the floor and placing them onto another body on a nearby table. As the women whispered Domunsoka discovered that he recognized the language the women spoke, even though it was one he had never spoken before.

“We found another one unconscious in the bushes, great one. He had been attacked too.” The voice belonged to a woman and was frail and innocent.

“Yes, I sensed him earlier. We will need him so prepare him for the transformation” said another voice. It was a voice he knew well, but which he couldn’t quite place.

Domunsoka tried to awaken with more than his spirit, struggled to regain consciousness and slowly, involuntarily, his limbs reacted to his will.

“Oh, no you don’t” said the familiar voice and laid a hand on his forehead. Domunsoka felt waves of fatigue wash over his body, something he had never experienced before, and soon he was fast asleep. But his sleep was troubled; his entire body ached in a thousand places, some of which he didn’t realize existed.

--------------------------------------

“You sleep my children and you dream. Your visions are true for you have been linked to other places and beings, like the Great Harbinger Birds, through the powers of several tattoos which are even now being grafted onto your bodies. Fear them not, for they will give you much, but they also bind you to our service; the service of the line of Keldon. You must defend the ring of Keldon at all costs, even your own life. You must ascend the mountain and prevent the ring from falling in the hands of your former master” The words echoed through dreams of pain and torture, the honey sweet voice of a girl angelic and pure.

Again there was a reply from the other end of oblivion; six voices were raised in defiance: “Why should we care? Why should we obey you?”

The reply came swiftly and sounded as if it was shouted from a long distance away: “You care and you obey because you have to.”

-------------------------------------

On the Slopes of Mount Keadle
The Eastern Cyllereans
Close to the Tarnil lake in Ardamien
2 days later


A chill breeze blew through the forest, rustling the leaves of the trees, soothing six figures lying unconscious on the ground, partially covered with leaves and stains of blood. The sounds of birds were few and far between and apart from the trees and insects and plants themselves, there was no other indication of life. The roots were thick underfoot, a latticework here and there through the humus, spreading out to bridge the gap between every tree. The wet leaves on the ground was stirred by the chill breeze and some were tossed away, some even landing atop one of the immobile figures.

Then there was movement. Several of the prone men stirred in their sleep. As an ant crawled up his chin, approaching his lips, Hans Sternflucht brushed it away and sat up, groaning with pain, groggily cursing beneath his breath. His arms were shaking and slowly he raised the left one, staring numbly at it. A tattooed patch of skin had been stitched onto it, a confusing mass of tattooed runes, with glyphs speckled among them. Looking around he discovered that five of his men were still around, lying semi-nude in the leaves, covered with blood and stitches and tattoos similar to his own. For long minutes he just sat there, staring at his tattoos and those of his men, before he finally had the presence to speak. “Wake up, men. Wake up.”
« Last Edit: April 21, 2006, 03:10:25 AM by Ancient Gamer »
Authentic Strolenite™©®

"Secretly a Squirrel"
Guild Master of the Squirrelati
Scourge of Nutanuns!
Harbinger of Acorns!


Offline Chaosmark

  • Harbringer of Segfaults
  • Strolenati
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 1246
  • Awards Master Questor Item Guild Hall of Heroes 10
    • The Sleepless Hacker
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2005, 01:55:34 PM »
The wind brushed past his wings, the air flowed arounding him, beneath him, through him. His wings beat a steady tempo, holding him aloft, thousands of feet above the stony ground. He could still smell the blood as the carrion birds fed upon the fallen. Foolish, weak two-legs. Lacking in the ability and freedom of flight. He turned and flew away from the scene of carnage, toward a destination unknown.

With a gasp of awakening, Hunthar sat upright. He looked around, trying to make out his surroundings. He relaxed slightly as he saw the others of the band, most likely all that were left. Giving a nod to Hans, he shook his head slightly, trying to remember the fleeting images of his dreams. All he could remember was something about the HexenJaegers and frozen cold; with a sigh, he filed away the thought for future reference.

As he tried to stand, Hunthar finally became aware of the steady, throbbing pain in his left ankle. Looking down to see what was causing the discomfort, he saw the tattoo on his shirtless chest, familiar in some way he couldn't discribe, with its stars and lines connected into an image he couldn't form looking at it upside down. Grafted onto his left arm was new skin, the glyphs and runes looking strange and foreign to his eyes. The runes finally resolved themselves into the image of a man, ghostly in appearance somehow. His mind began to remember his dreams with increasing clarity, and Hunthar gave an involuntary shiver.

His hand moved down to the leg of his breeches to pull it up, and there along his leg was more transplanted skin. It looked almost exactly like a noose, wrapping around his leg in an aching pain, and in that second he knew without looking that the tattoo travelled all the way up to his thigh, where the pain started. He growled in annoyance at whomever might have done this to him. All he had done was escape from the barbarians and kill a few. Nothing deserved this sort of annoyance.

Hunthar looked around to the others, just now rousing, and tried to find his shirt, yet couldn't find it. With a sigh he sat back down, resolved to kill the person who had marked him so.
P(A|B) = P(B|A)*P(A)/P(B)

By the power of Bayes!

Acolyte Lithil Darkheart – Level 1 Necromancer
STR: 1 | END: 2 | CON: 3 | DEX: 3 | CHA: 3 | INT: 3

Current guild quest: --

Offline EchoMirage

  • Caffeinated Alcoholic Blood
  • Strolenati
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 1655
  • Medice cura te ipsum
  • Awards Item Guild Lifeforms Guild Master Questor Elite Questor NPC Guild Golden Creator
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2005, 10:25:48 AM »
I lied there, the damp earth pressing against my back, its unceasing attraction the only thing preventing me from floating away, towards the weeping stars, whose tears ran down all over my body, tracing creeks in sweat-bound dirt.

I tried to catch them, as they swirled before my aching eyes, I reached up to grasp a few, yet too swift they were, darting hence and forth. Instead, their tears became bloody, salty against my lips. I blew them a few kissess, thanks for weeping so intensely for me.

"No need my dear to despair so - I am well and the eart is soft..."

As my hand wandered closer to my eyes, I noticed there - streams of blood covered its surface, dripping down all over my features.
I felt pity for the numerous stars that must have bled to death.
Or not?
My other hand - where did I put it? - appeared bloody too, yet - nowhere else the stars had bled.

From the mists, the chill forest emerged into existence, sending shivers across my skin.
Still, the question remained - why all the blood? Have I slain someone? Rip out his heart?
It did not seem so, lest I'd remember the taste.
So?

As it became more and more, so came a nagging thought to fore, so obvious and yet unreal - the blood was mine, but ... yes, the wounds I feel.

As I staggered to my feet, the pain was there, so clear, complete...
By needles and knives I had been stung, foreign skin across me strung.

A squeal escaped my lips, as my mind came into waking, flooded by the full extent of the pain, a whine kin to a banshee's wail.
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

Authentic Strolenite (though spanked) (C) (R)

Offline Alec_Shadowkin

  • Minor Count of Creative Endeavors
  • Guardian
  • **
  • Posts: 207
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #3 on: August 11, 2005, 07:26:05 AM »
Flare sat up, spitting leaves out of his mouth. All he could hear was roaring, though he knew it was just in his head. As it faded he traced the lines of something on his back and a curious look crossed his face. He suddenly winced and his hand moved to his chest, as if it were tender.

Opening his shirt, he traced a scar running from his left shoulder toward his navel, but about halfway down, his fingers shifted to the right and he looked with a slight frown at the rough skin grafted there. First his finges ran over what looked like a strange roiling mist, though Flare didn't understand how a tattoo could appear to move. Perhaps it was his eyes. Closer to his right nipple, the feel of the skin changed, a new seam appearing. On this, almost cradled by the mist tattoo, was what looked almost like a constellation. He looked at it for a moment, then it hit him: The Scorpion Spirit. He thought for a moment, but the myth surrounding it wouldn't come to him. Something about being cornered... hidden strengths? He shook his head, trying to clear the cobwebs still fluttering around.
Authentic Strolenite©

- "You're Hells Angels, then? What chapter are you from?"
- REVELATIONS, CHAPTER SIX.

-- Death in conversation with a biker (Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman, Good Omens)

Offline Ancient Gamer

  • Hammer of the Citadel
  • Emperor
  • ****
  • Posts: 3880
  • Enough about you, let's talk about me!
  • Awards 2013 Best Play By Post Game Elite Item Guild Elite Systems Guild Elite Plot Guild Hall of Heroes 10 Golden Creator
    • Coldforged Home
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #4 on: August 12, 2005, 01:01:31 PM »
By the roots of a nearby tree lay separate bundles containing the shirts and equipment of the mutilated mercs. Someone had put salted meat, nuts and dried roots as well as a wine skin full of vintage red among their stuff. Hans Sternflucht sat almost naked, staring at the bundles, absently noticing that someone had polished his sword. Then he broke down and began crying, one of the rare instances his men ever saw him do so. "I... I don't understand. Why would anyone do this to us? Now the Order will burn us for sure! Why would they do this to us?" Then he wiped his tears and looked around, smiling half heartedly. There was a time for crying and there was a time for survival.

"I don't know anything about what is going on. I don't know who did this. I don't know why. All I have are these really confusing dreams and even they don't tell me much." Hans said and sighed. Then he stared down on the chaotic mass of runes that covered his entire stomach; it was shaped as a snarling dog backed into a corner. An involuntary shiver visibly went through his body and he stared at those who was awake.

"Where is the rest of your squad, Hunthtar?" he asked before looking at Sharee. "Any answers for us, Sharee? please... Flare? Anyone?"

Hans Sternflucht had a haggard, destitute look on his face and his eyes darted from shadow to shadow. He was a man on the verge of breaking down.
Authentic Strolenite™©®

"Secretly a Squirrel"
Guild Master of the Squirrelati
Scourge of Nutanuns!
Harbinger of Acorns!


Offline EchoMirage

  • Caffeinated Alcoholic Blood
  • Strolenati
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 1655
  • Medice cura te ipsum
  • Awards Item Guild Lifeforms Guild Master Questor Elite Questor NPC Guild Golden Creator
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2005, 04:58:38 AM »
There, from the mist, a voice calling my name? Perhaps... perhaps I could ask it why the air is so chill, why the world is swaying from side to side, why I am bleeding so?

I stumbled through the forest, gazing at the glowing life-spirits all around me, sensing their low humming - the trees hummmed as they drank water from the soil, the birds echoed with subliminal patterns of empathic magic, while the grass below whined with every step.

Tread lightly.

In front of me, there one larger spirit glowed, huddled up by a tree, and his was the voice that called me, for sure.
I openened my eyes. Why were the eyelids so heavy, each gaze a feat of will?

There he sat... Hans was his name. Half nude, covering.

I uttered a few words of comfort: "Why are you unarmed, mercenary, and without your armor? How exactly are you going to command your men like that? Answer me!"
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

Authentic Strolenite (though spanked) (C) (R)

Offline Maggot

  • Insectoid Horror Of Canberra
  • Strolenati
  • King
  • *
  • Posts: 947
  • Awards Society Guild Elite Society Guild Item Guild Locations Guild Lifeforms Guild Questor
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2005, 07:45:31 AM »
Solstra awoke,slowly,painfully. Every bone in her body seemed to groan in protest as she laboriously eased her body off the cold,damp forest floor. Oh,Gods,how she hated this awful place. So many horrible things had befallen her in this accursed place... Shaking her head,she hurriedly tried to drive away the memories of the traumatic previous few days spent in this woodland Hell,before they could rush to overwhelm her and make her dissolve into terrified tears again.

 She caught something in the corner of her eye. What in the name of all creation was that hideous mass of tiny images marring her lovely skin?! Why would someone do such a horrible thing to her? Didn't the callous brute responsible,know that this might mean the end of her existence as a pleasure slave? And before she knew it,she was giving voice to a full throated scream,one that all the forest animals in the vicinity of their little resting place must have heard.
“I'm yet another resource-consuming kid in an overpopulated planet, raised to an alarming extent by Hollywood and Madison Avenue, poised with my cynical and alienated peers to take over the world when you're old and weak.” -Bill Watterson

 Authentic Strolenite®©

Offline Chaosmark

  • Harbringer of Segfaults
  • Strolenati
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 1246
  • Awards Master Questor Item Guild Hall of Heroes 10
    • The Sleepless Hacker
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2005, 08:05:52 PM »
Hunthar looked to Hans and gave him a smirk before crawling to his pack and pulling out some rations, slightly stale from his captivity. "Where is my squad? Which pieces of them?" he said in between stuffing food down his gaping maw, the sarcasm fairly dripping off his voice. "As far as I know, I'm the only one that survived the ambush by those barbarians. For some reason after the rest of the group died I was spared. They treated me better than what I'd have thought they would have, and some of the younger savages even seemed to hold me in respect. I'm not sure why though."

He paused in his story just long enough to gulp down some wine from his flask and continued. "The fools kept me under a light guard that was easily escaped and ran through the snowstorm blindly. The last thing I remember was the faint sound of voices ahead of me, then a blur of motion left me prone and bleeding in the snow. Next thing I knew, I woke up here, with all these tattoos on my chest and arm." He gave the screaming girl a glance. She wasn't part of the mercenary troop. Judging from the way her body appeared, before she had been mutilated she might have been a pleasure girl. Looking back to Hans, he pointed to Solstra with his head, his voice still muffled by food. "Who's she?"
P(A|B) = P(B|A)*P(A)/P(B)

By the power of Bayes!

Acolyte Lithil Darkheart – Level 1 Necromancer
STR: 1 | END: 2 | CON: 3 | DEX: 3 | CHA: 3 | INT: 3

Current guild quest: --

Offline Maggot

  • Insectoid Horror Of Canberra
  • Strolenati
  • King
  • *
  • Posts: 947
  • Awards Society Guild Elite Society Guild Item Guild Locations Guild Lifeforms Guild Questor
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2005, 07:40:53 AM »
Solstra jerked her head towards the strange man who had seemingly come out of nowhere. The fire of hysteria burning in her eyes,she abruptly ceased her screaming in mid pitch and asked him in a low,dangerous voice filled with barely suppressed wrath,''Are you the sick monster who has despoiled me thus?'' Even as she uttered these words,her hands formed into quivering fists.
“I'm yet another resource-consuming kid in an overpopulated planet, raised to an alarming extent by Hollywood and Madison Avenue, poised with my cynical and alienated peers to take over the world when you're old and weak.” -Bill Watterson

 Authentic Strolenite®©

Offline Chaosmark

  • Harbringer of Segfaults
  • Strolenati
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 1246
  • Awards Master Questor Item Guild Hall of Heroes 10
    • The Sleepless Hacker
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2005, 11:54:34 AM »
Hunthar's snort at Solstra's words was almost completely ruined by the food in his mouth, but he looked to her and smirked anyways, taking another drink of his wine. "Lass, why in the name of a Hexenjaeger, may the gods destroy every last one, would I put tattoos on you, Hans, probably everyone else here, AND myself? These things hurt worse than being raked over hot coals. Why would I do such a thing to myself, eh?"

With another snort he rolled his eyes and continued eating, pausing for half a moment to reflect on getting new rations, and maybe staying at an inn while he was at it.
P(A|B) = P(B|A)*P(A)/P(B)

By the power of Bayes!

Acolyte Lithil Darkheart – Level 1 Necromancer
STR: 1 | END: 2 | CON: 3 | DEX: 3 | CHA: 3 | INT: 3

Current guild quest: --

Offline Ancient Gamer

  • Hammer of the Citadel
  • Emperor
  • ****
  • Posts: 3880
  • Enough about you, let's talk about me!
  • Awards 2013 Best Play By Post Game Elite Item Guild Elite Systems Guild Elite Plot Guild Hall of Heroes 10 Golden Creator
    • Coldforged Home
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2005, 06:25:36 PM »
The sloped forest floor had gotten quite lively and gave Hans other things to think about, besides despair and confusion. "I... don't know. Help me Sharee, give me a hand..." his speech was cut short as he saw the blood soaked hands of Sharee. "Never mind, I can manage".

The long, blonde curled hair of the sergeant was caked with dry blood and sweat and rain. He carefully donned his chainmail hauberk, and then pulled the coif over his dirty hair. Hans studied his breastplate and the greaves, vambraces and gauntlets. Someone had polished his armour, as well as beaten the breastplate back in shape.

All the while the other mercs talked in the background; Hans heard Hunthar sarcastically recount the tale of how his friends had died. Then he looked at Sharee and Flare and was about to speak, when suddenly Solstra began her screaming and flinging accusations. Hunthar couldn't hold his tongue and replied with sound logic dripping of sarcasm.

"Silence! I am still ranking officer! Now I am not one to pull rank, but this is out of line" Hans yelled. He gave both Hunthar and Solstra a withering look before he faced Flare and nodded. "Help me strap on my breastplate, Flare". As Flare fastened the straps, Hans flinched. "It is my shoulder... It hurts like hell because of those tattoos" he said. As the alchemist continued his struggle with the breastplate, Sternflucht faced the other mercenaries. "I know we are all confused, but right now we got to do something. We cannot give in to pointless bickering and infighting. If any of you scholarly gentlemen, and ladies, have any ideas, I'd be more than happy to listen to them" The sergeant spoke while he buckled his weapons belt.

"Oh and one more thing. Could someone help Domunsoka out of that pile of leaves?"
Authentic Strolenite™©®

"Secretly a Squirrel"
Guild Master of the Squirrelati
Scourge of Nutanuns!
Harbinger of Acorns!


Offline Maggot

  • Insectoid Horror Of Canberra
  • Strolenati
  • King
  • *
  • Posts: 947
  • Awards Society Guild Elite Society Guild Item Guild Locations Guild Lifeforms Guild Questor
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #11 on: August 15, 2005, 08:16:45 AM »
Solstra raised her eyebrows quite meaningfully at the mention of Domunska's name.
 
 ''Ahh,that fell being hewn from wood. I wonder if it too had been ravaged as the rest of us have? And if not,I think we have a very plausible answer as to the question of just who is responsible for having ravaged us thus.'' The last sentance was said with a dark edge of menace. To Hell with what Hans said. If anyone in this party was guilty of  disfiguring her with those horrid tattoos,she would stop at nothing to make them pay. Nothing.
“I'm yet another resource-consuming kid in an overpopulated planet, raised to an alarming extent by Hollywood and Madison Avenue, poised with my cynical and alienated peers to take over the world when you're old and weak.” -Bill Watterson

 Authentic Strolenite®©

Offline Alec_Shadowkin

  • Minor Count of Creative Endeavors
  • Guardian
  • **
  • Posts: 207
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #12 on: August 15, 2005, 08:33:39 AM »
Flare raised his eyebrows at the former pleasure-slave. "Fell being? Domunsoka's saved our lives more often than I can count. Quit trying to lay blame. We all have these d**ned painful things and even if Domunsoka hasn't been disfigured as we, where in the hells would he have gotten the grafts to place on us? Take some deep breaths and calm down for two minutes.

Flare walked over to where Domunsoka was laying in the leaves and held his hand out as if to help him up. As Flare reached the wooden doll, he stopped dead and just stared, his hand still held out.
Authentic Strolenite©

- "You're Hells Angels, then? What chapter are you from?"
- REVELATIONS, CHAPTER SIX.

-- Death in conversation with a biker (Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman, Good Omens)

Offline CaptainPenguin

  • Bastardo!
  • Squirrel Strolenati
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 5869
  • Awards Questor Hall of Heroes 10
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #13 on: August 15, 2005, 10:10:17 AM »
A sharp shading of flesh and wood, a lattice of twisting, twitching muscles which strain against dead cellulose integuments. Withered, blackened lips draw back against the oaken face, revealing a nightmare snarl of yellow fangs like chips of fossilized bone.

There is an extension of consciousness; Domunsoka discovers biologies at work within it. A heart beats beneath inches of wood, and lungs take breath. It's frame is distorted, bent- rods and pins of metal and wood mix with muscle and ligament.

The ghost doll raises it's right arm, the arm of the Divine Thing whose flesh it has stolen. It flexes the gnarled fingers of a blackened claw, observes the shoulder joint where wood and black skin mix into an impossible flux of separate physiologies.

There is a grunt, a cough, blood dribbles from the lips and jaws of the creature which have replaced the carven smile of Domunsoka's wooden face, and it lifts it's head and releases a low, hoarse growl which echoes unnaturally among the trees.

what   is the artist of this thing this horror this   wonder this shame;
A captive consciousness raves within Domunsoka, spitting forth madness poetry.
what has become of that strain that   twitch the &^%$@ unnatural sculptural now transmitted   pitted deepened stained upon this   canvas of wood and metal   it is a darkness creeping   like fungus a spreading cancer of flesh a withering of naturality spirits scream in its wake what is it now a waste a fallen   thing a Divine Thing a wooden doll with parts of an ancient corpse like a patchwork   of dead heroes like the   star of the   ancients this vital carcass this ragged   corpse of slain tree-flesh and an old forgotten agreement...
Currently Reading: "Kafka On The Shore" by Haruki Murakami

Currently Listening To: "Piece Of Time" by Atheist

Offline EchoMirage

  • Caffeinated Alcoholic Blood
  • Strolenati
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 1655
  • Medice cura te ipsum
  • Awards Item Guild Lifeforms Guild Master Questor Elite Questor NPC Guild Golden Creator
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #14 on: August 15, 2005, 10:18:07 AM »
"That is more like it, Hans." I smiled.
"As it seems, we have survived more or less intact - I hope that is a blessing."
Something gnawed at my thoughts, trying to get attention.
Yes, that thing.
"You" I turened to Solstara "where have you learned to speak when not asked? Especially in that tone? I thought that would get you whipped in your previous profession. Don't consider this group here any different. So, get a sense of propriety and know your place, be a good slave girl and don't annoy anyone, or  I might start to annoy you in ingenious ways."

More to myself than to anyone I murmured: "That Domunsoka, that is a proper person - silent, decent, friendly."
A little louder I asked Flare: "Is Woody alright, mister?"

...

While waiting for responses, and not having anything better at hand, I licked my hands clean - only to discover that underneath the blood, they have been marked too, in lines scarlet as... well, blood.

I smirked, and asked: "Do they suit me? I think not."
After thinking for a second, I continued: "Someone has marked us in this unwanted body graffitti - considering the effort, he will be gaining something through this, most likely some control to exert over us. Still, from the varied auras I percieve from them, I think they will have other aspects too - beneficial, most likely, for the Someone would rather not seek to hinder those on whom he stitched these works of art. Still, magick is a two-bladed axe that cuts both ways - used at one's own peril. The one who plays with fire gets burned, as they say."

Picking out a knife from the packs, I proceeded to attempt to remove the black adornment on my right hand forcefully - with the ony effect of cutting myself repeatedly. "Won't come off" I noted, while tracing the Ayur sigil with the ample blood to close the cuts.
Upon noticing my plate and cloak, as well as clothes - well, everything, except for my sorcerous undies, lyijng amongst the packs, I added:
"And we might all follow the example of mister Sternflucht, and get dressed again, starting with myself."
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

Authentic Strolenite (though spanked) (C) (R)

Offline Chaosmark

  • Harbringer of Segfaults
  • Strolenati
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 1246
  • Awards Master Questor Item Guild Hall of Heroes 10
    • The Sleepless Hacker
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #15 on: August 15, 2005, 06:35:49 PM »
Hunthar bowed his head and looked suitably chastised as Hans berrated him, then stood to pull on his breeches before walking slowly over to help pull Domunsoka out of the leaves. He too was struck silent and dumbfounded at the sight of the ghost doll, ghostly no longer. In his place was a ghoul, half doll, half monster.

Hunthar tilted his head at the new Domunsoka, then shrugged and proffered his hand to help the new-made creature to its feet. With only half an ear did he listen to Sharee's idle banter, ending with a conclusion he had come to only moments before; that the tattoos were probably permanent, and they needed to have some clothing, especially in this environment.
P(A|B) = P(B|A)*P(A)/P(B)

By the power of Bayes!

Acolyte Lithil Darkheart – Level 1 Necromancer
STR: 1 | END: 2 | CON: 3 | DEX: 3 | CHA: 3 | INT: 3

Current guild quest: --

Offline CaptainPenguin

  • Bastardo!
  • Squirrel Strolenati
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 5869
  • Awards Questor Hall of Heroes 10
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #16 on: August 16, 2005, 02:52:53 AM »
Domunsoka rises, flesh shuddering and twitching, it's new-given maw snarling and hissing animalistically at the two surrounding it.

Domunsoka has had dreams, fragmented dreams, dreams where never was a dream before: It has dreamed of things it has never known, things strange to it, new concepts which it only begins to understand with the partial intelligence of the Divine Thing, landscapes, moonscapes, forgotten halls beneath the ocean like the bones of stone whales, dreams of war and birds and women talking in harsh croaking voices like ravens. It has dreamed that a woman slew it with a wave of her hand. It dreams a dream of long years, a reminiscence or a possibility; the Divine Thing screeches that this is false, this is not the truth, this is not the ghost doll's life, and then
It has dreamed of a little child, a little boy running on the white sand of a beach, with miles upon miles of dunes and turf and tall weed, happy at play collecting pebbles, splashing in salty surf. Mother is up the beach, diving for clams to sell on market day. It is a perfect day, with sunshine and a cake and no small siblings. But then comes the bad man , dressed in his robes of white and purple (here the Divine Thing screeches like a fearful child) and he drags the boy, now crying, away from the beach and away from mother, a white body slicing through green waves, unseeing. Days pass and the bad man does bad things. He hurts the boy and the little boy cries, but there come no tears. It has all happened in a large mansion close to the sea, whipped by autumn storms and surrounded by a dark forest. It is a bad place and the villagers have nothing to do with it, for even the good ones fear it, so they stay well away. The big house is a scary place with benches and utensils, barred windows and chained wooden dolls. Strangely enough, the dolls cry like children, comforting the boy somewhat, even though they are not human. 11 was the number of childish dolls, 12 the number of brethren, for the boy counts himself as their brother, and they count him as well. For long moments, almost like an eternity, the brethren stand inactive, chained to the walls, hurt by the bad man who does strange things to them all. Then one day the good people come and bear torches and knives, spears and screams. The boy’s mother is there and they are all angry, screaming and shouting, telling the bad man how bad he has been. But mother does not recognize her boy (the Divine Thing wails) and the good people punish the bad man, but they also punish the wooden dolls and the little boy. Everything and everyone is thrown at sea; the bad man, his furniture, and the brethren as well, sinking like traitors condemned to drown into green depths of eternity, into blue depths of choking fear, into black depths where only false shadows of remnants settle in the domain of godlike molluscs and noctilucent jelly-beings.

The dream shifts, blurs, reverses, forward faster now, unceasing, gulfs of time speeding by and no longer is there a boy which lay broken amidst the rocks, waiting to be carried away by the tide. Now there is a wooden man cradling a boy in his arms instead. A boy who is very similar to another one, yet whose memory was lost in a thousand thousand knots of enfolded wood and pins of iron. The wooden man is crying, but tears do not fall, for the boy is dead and the wooden man is not human, but a mockery, a doll, a shape, a mannequin, a falsity, a ghost. The boy is a broken thing seeping crimson fluids upon its wooden torso. Now matter how hard it tries, the wooden man cannot repair the broken boy, like a toy to be mended, so easily smashed by petulant children, and neither does it help to punish the bad men who are responsible.

So the wooden man screams, but it does not help.
So the wooden man curses, but no one hears.
So the wooden man grieves, but there is no mercy.
It's emotions fall broken like toys, like wooden dolls, and harden into knotty, silvered, weathered sculptures of emotions, final vestiges of humanity which lie about it's feet.

In the distance storm clouds are gathering, omens reflecting the inner turmoil of the wooden man. And when it breaks, so does the sky. And when it cries, so does the sky. And when it's heart grows cold, winter arrives, so easy a shift of subtle temperature, like the uneven roiling of color upon a chameleon, and even midsummer becomes a tempest of snow.
Currently Reading: "Kafka On The Shore" by Haruki Murakami

Currently Listening To: "Piece Of Time" by Atheist

Offline Maggot

  • Insectoid Horror Of Canberra
  • Strolenati
  • King
  • *
  • Posts: 947
  • Awards Society Guild Elite Society Guild Item Guild Locations Guild Lifeforms Guild Questor
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #17 on: August 16, 2005, 04:09:28 AM »
Solstra instantly forgot her cutting riposte to the witch's obnoxious threat,recoiling in terror as the ghastly thing that had once been the ghost doll,reared up and bared its bony fangs at them like some ancient horror out of a fable

 ''What in the names of the Gods has happened to that thing! Hans,Flare,someone put an end to it before it kills us all!''
“I'm yet another resource-consuming kid in an overpopulated planet, raised to an alarming extent by Hollywood and Madison Avenue, poised with my cynical and alienated peers to take over the world when you're old and weak.” -Bill Watterson

 Authentic Strolenite®©

Offline EchoMirage

  • Caffeinated Alcoholic Blood
  • Strolenati
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 1655
  • Medice cura te ipsum
  • Awards Item Guild Lifeforms Guild Master Questor Elite Questor NPC Guild Golden Creator
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #18 on: August 16, 2005, 05:42:40 AM »
Looking at Dumonsoka, I forgot to slap Solstara.

"In-te-res-ting..." was my only response.
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

Authentic Strolenite (though spanked) (C) (R)

Offline Ancient Gamer

  • Hammer of the Citadel
  • Emperor
  • ****
  • Posts: 3880
  • Enough about you, let's talk about me!
  • Awards 2013 Best Play By Post Game Elite Item Guild Elite Systems Guild Elite Plot Guild Hall of Heroes 10 Golden Creator
    • Coldforged Home
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #19 on: August 16, 2005, 06:32:45 AM »
"Domunsoka! Domunsoka! It is I, Hans, your leader!" Hans shouted to get through to the wooden horror. His breastplate was still being put on and Hans had begun fastening the right vambrace as Domunsoka began its snarling and wailing. A cold shiver went down his spine, fear and revulsion and confusion. "Domunsoka... We are your friends" he stuttered. "We have also been disfigured. We are all confused... We need you, please calm down" Hans said, his voice raw with uncertainty and fear.

What is this? What have they done to us? What kind of magic can do this? Is this my punishment for keeping company with a witch? Am I, perchance, dead and have gone to hell? Are we all dead? Oh, mother, will I ever see my loved ones again?

"Does anyone know anything about what has happened to us?" Hans repeated. Then he sighed and looked at his old squad: Sharee, Flare and, after hesitating for a second, Domunsoka. Dietrich! “Where is Dietrich? Has anybody seen Dietrich?" Oh, Dietrich my dumb, strong, and hideous friend, what fate has befallen you? Did you awaken and scream of foul magic, your mind unravelling when you realized what horrors had been visited upon your “mother” and yourself?

The minutes sped past as the mercenaries forgot to speak. Some distractedly searched for Dietrich, others were alone, rambling to themselves, unsure whether they were trapped in some horrible nightmare or if this was for real. Meanwhile Domunsoka wailed and snarled, a frightful figure beyond any of the mercenaries’ wildest dreams, and the others kept a healthy, respectful distance. After a while a quiet peace settled upon the men, and they breathed easier. It was strange how hysteria and insanity was driven away, instead replaced by an unexpected reserve of inner strength and serenity.

Even though the weather had grown a bit colder and the wind a bit stronger, it was still very pretty up in the mountains. The mercenaries’ location within the forest, and their close proximity to the cliff edge provided them with a beautiful vista of the mountains and, for some reason, they all felt better as they gazed upon the snow covered mountain peaks, and the lush rolling hills of the lowlands.

Hans Sternflucht, his voice now calm and controlled, looked once more upon his men. “We really need to do something, and I value your opinion highly. Let those who wish to speak do so, for I request your counsel” He looked upon the ghost doll horror and smiled. “Glad that you are among us once again Domunsoka. We need your help, friend”.
Authentic Strolenite™©®

"Secretly a Squirrel"
Guild Master of the Squirrelati
Scourge of Nutanuns!
Harbinger of Acorns!


Offline Maggot

  • Insectoid Horror Of Canberra
  • Strolenati
  • King
  • *
  • Posts: 947
  • Awards Society Guild Elite Society Guild Item Guild Locations Guild Lifeforms Guild Questor
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #20 on: August 16, 2005, 11:54:49 PM »
Now Solstra was astounded. Did he just call that wooden horror friend? It was clear that the last few days had addled his sanity and by extension,his ability to come to intelligent decisons. A man who still retained his wits,would have no trouble in understanding that that Domunska monstrosity was dangerously unstable.
 
 ''You want my counsel,Hans?'' she muttered in a disgruntled undertone that he would not be able to hear. ''Get rid of your wooden monster before it finally goes berserk and kills us in our sleep. And while you're at it,it wouldn't hurt us to get rid of that foul witch either. She's begining to smell. Or is that supposed to be her natural scent?''.
“I'm yet another resource-consuming kid in an overpopulated planet, raised to an alarming extent by Hollywood and Madison Avenue, poised with my cynical and alienated peers to take over the world when you're old and weak.” -Bill Watterson

 Authentic Strolenite®©

Offline EchoMirage

  • Caffeinated Alcoholic Blood
  • Strolenati
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 1655
  • Medice cura te ipsum
  • Awards Item Guild Lifeforms Guild Master Questor Elite Questor NPC Guild Golden Creator
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #21 on: August 17, 2005, 05:00:22 AM »
"Now, tell me, what do you have to offer this band except for a ... ****?" I smirked. "Please, be so kind, and spare us your bedsheet widsom, your harem-born manipulations and your postcoital metaphors. 'Tis the last time I speak so kindly, lest you find yourself without that mouth and without your working tool."

I gave her a twink of my palm eye, and wandered over to Dumonsoka.

"Knock on wood, they say." I knocked. "Wake up. It's okay, Woody. Here I am. It's me."
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

Authentic Strolenite (though spanked) (C) (R)

Offline Alec_Shadowkin

  • Minor Count of Creative Endeavors
  • Guardian
  • **
  • Posts: 207
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #22 on: August 17, 2005, 07:24:43 AM »
Having gotten over his shock, Flare stepped back from Domunsoka and tilted his head, running his eyes over their friend's new form. It was marvelous, in a sadistic and creepy sort of way. The meld of flesh and wood was remarkable. He wanted to actually touch the doll, examine the joints and try to see how he's held together. Suddenly his concetration was blown as the girl started yelling again. He took a deep breath and whirled on his heel.
"By the ancestors, if you do not shut your mouth, pleasure-slave, I will shut it for you! Flinging groundless accusations and making a scene in the middle of the forest won't help anyone. We are all stuck here, we've all been modified and I do not want to hear your voice again until you can calm yourself down and be rational." He reached into his coat and pulled out a vial of deep bluish substance. "If you won't behave, I can always just seal your mouth shut until you promise to be more pleasant." Flare looked toward Hans and rolled his eyes.
Authentic Strolenite©

- "You're Hells Angels, then? What chapter are you from?"
- REVELATIONS, CHAPTER SIX.

-- Death in conversation with a biker (Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman, Good Omens)

Offline Chaosmark

  • Harbringer of Segfaults
  • Strolenati
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 1246
  • Awards Master Questor Item Guild Hall of Heroes 10
    • The Sleepless Hacker
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #23 on: August 17, 2005, 08:51:35 AM »
Hunthar smiled slightly and backed away from Domunsoka as the doll rose, letting his hand fall to his side. His mouth became set in a deeper frown as the naked woman made the suggestion to put down perhaps the best fighter in the band, then opened his mouth to respond to Hans, only to have it clamp shut as the pleasure slave muttered her nigh-blastphemous words. While Hans might not have heard, Hunthar did, and was not happy with it at all.

"Excuse me, you arrogant little whore, but what hole did you crawl out of that makes you such a great judge of those who you have not been with for the past two years, as most of us have? What makes you so convinced you're able to decern truths unapparent to the rest of us about the company we keep in this troup, huh? Why in the name of the dark gods can't you just keep your mouth shut, you insolent little hell-worm?!" So great was his fury at the moronic female that Hunthar forgot to respond to Hans once he was finished.
P(A|B) = P(B|A)*P(A)/P(B)

By the power of Bayes!

Acolyte Lithil Darkheart – Level 1 Necromancer
STR: 1 | END: 2 | CON: 3 | DEX: 3 | CHA: 3 | INT: 3

Current guild quest: --

Offline Ancient Gamer

  • Hammer of the Citadel
  • Emperor
  • ****
  • Posts: 3880
  • Enough about you, let's talk about me!
  • Awards 2013 Best Play By Post Game Elite Item Guild Elite Systems Guild Elite Plot Guild Hall of Heroes 10 Golden Creator
    • Coldforged Home
    • Awards
Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #24 on: August 17, 2005, 09:35:56 AM »
Finally full clad in chain mail with plate armour on his torso, Hans clenched his gauntleted fist around the hilt of his sword. "I will have no more of this from any of you!" He shouted. Then he turned to face the mutilated pleasure slave. "Wench, listen and listen carefully. You have stated a certain measure of fear for this employer of ours, telling us how he has tricked you and exploited you" Hans smiled deviously to the insolent young woman. "Now I am sure he is just dying to meet you again, or you might want to take your chances alone with the horny savages. The Gods know you could probably do great good on the floor of some earthen hut, pleasing their painted warriors when you are not washing pottery or skinning dead game" he cleared his throat and looked Solstra directly in the eyes. "But make no mistake girl, I am not letting you travel under our protection if you do not calm down. If you want to survive, and want to escape that master of yours, you can come along with us. But here my word is final, though I usually allow much from my men... and Women" he smiled as he glanced sideways to Sharee. He inhaled and practically shouted one final sentence: "So what do we do? Where do we go from here?" His eyes scanned the group, staring each and every one, barring Domunsoka, directly in the eyes.
Authentic Strolenite™©®

"Secretly a Squirrel"
Guild Master of the Squirrelati
Scourge of Nutanuns!
Harbinger of Acorns!