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Author Topic: Coldforged - Shadows of War: Chapter 1 - Ûr-Keldon  (Read 35122 times)

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Offline Maggot

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #50 on: August 27, 2005, 03:26:37 AM »
''Fools!'' Solstra hissed,her expression twisted in a rictus of both extreme horror and bitter contempt. ''No wonder your little band keeps finding itself in such dire straits,what with incompetent bunglers like you filling its ranks. Now I will die because your great Hans messed up like the half-wit he is! I'm going to die because of his stupidity!''
 
 
 Oh,gods. There was no way they would escape this time.  No,she would die,caught  in the middle of a savage battle with these addled brained mercenaries who seemed to have a phenomenal talent for putting themselves smack in fearsome peril. To slip free of the vile clutches of Marcus,only to be hacked into bloody bits by as of yet unseen warriors whom were undoubtedly filled with the frenzied urge to slay anything in their path. It was an irony too cruel for her battered soul to endure. Eyes tearing,she whispered her lament again,this time so softly that only she could hear it. ''I'm going to die..''. Maybe,just maybe,if she was fortunate enough,her end would be quick and relatively painless. All she could do at this final juncture in her wretched life,was hope. Perhaps the after-life would treat her more kindly than this one had.
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Offline Alec_Shadowkin

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #51 on: August 27, 2005, 09:45:58 AM »
Flare whipped his head around to the same sounds Hunthar heard. Battle. Fighting. It might be Marcus and his remaining followers or it could be something else all together. In any case, enough was enough! He whirled around, brandishing his spear and it was all he could do to not roar at Solstra. He managed to keep his voice at a loud whisper. "If you want to have your voicebox cut right here and now, you worthless wretch, you will keep open that hell-bound mouth of yours. We've been in more battles than you've heard of and no one's managed to kill us yet. So unless you want us to just give you back to Marcus when we find him, keep still and shut your gods-d**ned face!" He looked to Hans for orders, readjusting his coat and feeling the reassuring weight of his concoctions.
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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #52 on: August 29, 2005, 05:42:50 PM »
Sharee’s chant was low, rhythmic and enthralled the deceased spirit, her words laden with essence and power, making it sway like some cobra dancing to the music of her voice. The spirit of the dead chef was drawn to the witch, unable to control itself, hissing and cursing as it fell under the influence of her spell. “Leave me be, witch!” it hissed and hateful shades darted and danced around the heart of the spirit, retreating behind the massive spectral arrow as Sharee focused on them.

"Speak, and let us have part - in who or what pierced your heart” Sharee chanted, to which the spirit hissed and responded in kind, now fully under the influence of the spell. “I was killed by the high lord’s treasure, the one forged to mirror his pleasure. But her treacherous words and her evil breath, was not the true cause of my death. Hers was not the hand that felled me, yet it was. Hers was not the will that killed me, but it was her loss.”

As Sharee continued her questioning, the hateful shades grew stronger and the spirit hissed, causing the air around Sharee to grow even chiller, and soon the sorceress was covered with an additional thin layer of frost, chilling her to the bone. Still she spoke. “Speak of the captain, where he went, with all the mercenaries' might, This fateful night, so full of fright, why did he leave his tent?”

To this the spirit wailed, but it did not seem distressed and the strange shades calmed down, once more settling around the area of the wound. “The Captain, our leader, valiant and bold, left to hunt down my slayer so cold. He lifted his mattock and raised his sword, but he fails to see what remains unheard”

Having answered Sharee’s questions, the spirit danced its cobra dance, swaying to the motion of Sharee’s enthralling chant its eyes pleading for its release even as the dark shades slowly spread throughout its incorporeal body.

--------

Hans ran out of the tent as he heard Hunthar’s cry of warning. In his arms was a long spear, one he promptly shoved into the arms of the whining slave. “By the power that has been vested in me, I command you to fight for our cause!” he barked, his steely gaze firm upon the cowardly woman. Then he pushed the lithe woman forth, to the forefront of the group, alongside Hunthar and Flare. Then he shouted once again, looking distractedly over his shoulder towards the tent in which Roack hid.  “Roack! We need you here!"

Shadowy figures could be seen further up the path, their bulky frames emerging from the darkness, surrounded by a nimbus of swirling, powdery snow. There was a lot of them, four, five, no… eight men and two of them carried the nude corpse of a female between them. They were Captain Craeth Calwydden and his seven surviving men.

Solstra froze in her tracks. The dead woman was Onatha, the master’s first pleasure slave, a woman she both loved and loathed. The mercenaries had hacked her to pieces, even severed her head, which one of them now carried by the roots of her hair. Even in death her face had this strange sneer, a hateful visage silently condemning them all to eternal suffering. It was as if the face was even more alive now than ever in life, and it stared at them with dead eyes full of hate. A shudder went through the young ex-slave and she had to divert her eyes.

“Hans!” the burly Captain bellowed, and opened his arms in a warm hearted gesture, as if to hug his sergeant! “You cannot imagine how glad I am to see you and your men!”

Soon the bonfire had been refuelled and the 14 remaining men of Craeth's Mercenary Company, which once had totalled 120, sat around the fireplace discussing events. Domunsoka and Solstra attracted quite some attention, but the Captain quickly accepted the explanation, though he seemed shaken to the core of his being. The camp became alive with talk of Marcus and of a maddened naked whore assaulting their camp and refusing to die until she had been hacked to pieces. A dangerous whore which had killed a lot of men, ambushing them in the darkness, snapping their necks like they were twigs. An then there was talk about treasonous mercenaries, formerly loyal, who suddenly deserted with a man they formerly hated to a location they cannot possibly hope to flee from. There were so many topics and while some of the fatigued men sat talking around the fireplace, others went to bed, while still others stood guard, three and three, by orders of the Captain.

----------
(OOC: Sharee can continue her questioning of the spirit if she so desires, or she can release it to the afterlife. Meanwhile the rest of you can parlay with the Captain and his men, or you might want to get some sleep. You are all exhausted. Any other action is also feasible, it is up to you)
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Offline Roack

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #53 on: August 29, 2005, 07:28:03 PM »
Roack dropped the blankets and ear he had been hoarding seconds ago, Maybe no one would notice? No to risky, He'd have to think of an excuse if questioned. He looked to the oncoming procession of mercenaries, watched them light the fire, listened to their tale. This was good, perhaps he wouldn't be forced to speak to the other again. He stroked the chain around his neck, removing it to gaze in an odd mixture of horror and love, tempted for the next of countless times to hurl it away, before he placed it beside him and dozed off, his hand cradling the severed, bejewled fingers of Irath.

Offline CaptainPenguin

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #54 on: August 29, 2005, 08:29:11 PM »
Domunsoka, who once was quite immured to the presence of others, now finds itself bewildered by the sudden influx of new faces, paired with the maddened whispering of the Divine Thing. Crouching in the shadows on the outside of the firelight, the ghost doll sweeps its head from side to side, attempting to familiarize itself with these new and different creatures; the long black tongue lols from hideous jaws as it pants steam into the night air.
It feels the turmoil of it's mind crackle in the air around it, tiny particles excited, and feels the tingling of the flesh which bears one of it's new tattooes- circling ravens.
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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #55 on: August 30, 2005, 01:36:05 AM »
"So whose was the hand that felleth thee, though you cooketh so valliantly?
This last one question answer me, and I shall set you finally free.
So, speak to me, then sleep soundly."
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

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Offline Ancient Gamer

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #56 on: August 30, 2005, 02:50:29 AM »
Black shades enveloped the spirit even as it struggled to free itself of Sharee's compelling spell. "Danger rests hidden within, our once free hearts succumbing to sin" it spat. Then it hissed and whimpered as the shades slowly spread across its face. When the mouth had been completely covered, it finally grew silent and the ghostly mouth twisted into a sneer. Still, with one last act of personal free will and defiance, the spirit gazed upon two mercenaries that now sat by the fire. Men Sharee had hitherto not noticed. Within their spirits she could see shades dancing, slowly spreading; dark stains slowly devouring the soul or perhaps infecting it with some obscene rotting disease. Then the spirit gazed upon another dead spirit, chained to its broken corpse in the snow, hissing and cursing; promising Sharee eternal pain. The thing was dead and disabled, yet it would not perish and its spirit clawed at the mercenaries around the fireplace, its feminine face full of hate.

Then came an enourmous pull, dragging the spirit of the Chef towards its corpse. It was as if tremendously strong hands dragged it backwards and Sharee saw cords that stretched between the corpse and the soul. Something, for some purpose, had once more bound the dead spirit to its body and Sharee had no doubt the chef would soon live again. Yet it did not budge, locked by Sharee's mystic powers. The witch swooned as the pull increased, and she had to gather all her power about her to resist its attempt to break free..
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Offline EchoMirage

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #57 on: August 30, 2005, 07:47:06 AM »
"Thou who brewest stew and meat,
to rest, not waking shall be freed,
never have to walk this world again...

Thou who fed and yourself fed
shall by my hand to rest be led
don't haunt this world, not linger in vain...

Wander free, o chef so round
all wills compelling thee shall be unbound."

With these words I stretched out my hands towards the cook, breaking the thin covering of ice, and bade a few death-spirits to show him the way, to a place they knew all too well.

Walking over to Flare, I leaned on him as in exhaustion, and whispered into his ear: "Someone is working foul magics here, and 'tis not me. Better watch out, and likewise, watch -those- two." I looked at the two suspicious mercs.
"We should burn the chef and the whore" and, noticing the shocked look on his face, I added "the dead one."

I walked over to the fire, and spoke to those assembled there: "I shall give them the last rites, though -eh- Elven they will be, if you allow. Even though they were of flawed spirit, they deserve rest."
"Captain, the buttocks are moving from the pink into the red and purple spectrum! We cannot maintain this rate of spanking any longer!"

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #58 on: August 31, 2005, 03:01:00 PM »
Hunthar chuckled when he realized exactly who those ahead of the party were. The sounds of fighting had ceased, and he looked to Solstra with a searing gaze. "You're still under my protection girl, and I can't do that if you decide to ply your trade with the others. Stay in your own furs tonight. I have other matters to attend to than sitting outside some tent waiting for you to finish your business with some fool who wants some action."

That said, he began to circulate the camp slowly, checking up on each group of sentries, offering to mend broken and worn gear, and generally being companionable. Beneath all of this, however, was an underlying inquisitiveness that though kept well hidden, could not be prevented from asking questions. Why had the whore attacked the camp, who all had rebelled, how many had been brought down before she was herself?

However, even deeper still was a set of questions that were impossible for him to answer, and yet for those answers did he seek. Why had they been chosen to bear these tattoos, and what purpose might these serve? He was sure that the answer to both might lie within the realm of dreams, both past and present, but until sleep finally claimed him, he wouldn't know for sure.
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Offline Maggot

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #59 on: September 01, 2005, 11:27:11 PM »
The gruesome image of Onatha still fixed in her mind,Solstra was barely aware of Hunthar's barked command and his subsequent departure from her. No,the gruesome power of Onatha's final venomous gaze yet held her in its dark thrall.
 
Oh,gods,what had Marcus done this time? What manner of vile horror had he inflicted on the woman that had once been her best friend? Even after all the sick,depraved atrocities that had been wrought on her by the senior pleasure slave of Marcus,she still grieved for the unfortunate woman. Onatha had been the biggest victim of Marcus,suffered as she had,the very destruction of her once gentle and compassionate nature. No,Onatha could not be held responsible for all the horrid perversions she had displayed in her torment of Solstra over the years. It was that monster Marcus,who had turned her into the blood crazed beast that had wracked its bloody trail of devastation through the camp of the mercenaries.
 
 Marcus. The very thought of that hell spawned demon made her heart throb with a mixture of rage and remembered terror. But now that old fear was pushed away by the all consuming scream for revenge that echoed silently through her mind. Onatha's death had to be avenged. And so it would.  Marcus El-Keddeth could flee to the ends of the world,but she would hunt him down like the vermin he was. And in the final moments of his life,hers was the final face he would see as she dug her hands into his chest and ripped out his beating heart. Oh,how she would savour that.. As if to mirror that grim  resolve of hers,the tatoo of the sinister wolf that completely swallowed the skin of her left shoulder seemed to flare suddenly into existence,seemingly seething with ominous purpose.
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Offline EchoMirage

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #60 on: September 03, 2005, 05:54:48 AM »
I faced the men around the campfire - none of them seemed willing to even touch the deceased concubine once more.
With a frown, I dragged her off, trailing blood seeping through her numerous wounds.
Out of sight of the camp, I traced the sigils of the four suns - the seasons - into the snow, and then, touched the summer sun, to warm me while I work.
 
"Onetha, one without freedom, you shall be released
Onetha, one without solace, your pain shall now be eased.
Onetha, today slain, harass this world no more
Onetha, be dormant, depart
to the far, faraway shore."
 
My gaze gliding over her malevolent countenance, I thought: "This might not be enough."
 
I produced my ritual knife from the folds of my robes, its curved blade reflecting the snow's sparkle.
 
Gathering all my strength, I sliced her open ... the blood smelled foul, almost putrid. Prying open the chest, I removed her heart, and carved the Anor rune into it, flame reducing it to ashes.
The gruesome wok was yet not done, but to prevent the shadow from taking her again, I separated her head from the rest of the body, slicing between two vertebrae.
 
"d**n the work because of one whore" I hissed when I toppled a nearby boulder on her body, and a smaller one on the head.
 
"Sleep well, Onetha." I spoke, and turned back towards the camp.
 
Perhaps one of the tents still had a cozy spot.
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Offline Ancient Gamer

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #61 on: September 05, 2005, 05:59:04 PM »
Both the whore and the chef were burnt to crisp and then buried, the witch taking care of the decapitated slave herself. The Captain and his men followed Sharee’s instructions religiously. The witch was held in high esteem due to a number of life saving interventions by her magic and her cunning. A more modest man than the stubborn Sternflucht, the Captain was too old to rely solely on a misplaced sense of pride. Indeed he often mumbled words of wisdom to his junior commanders, and among those were “pride gets a man killed”.
 
Craeth trudged through the hard packed snow of the camp site, on a steady course to intercept the witch, which was en route to one of the tents. He clasped her shoulder with his gauntleted left hand and gave her a rough shake of approval, a sign of true friendship among the tribes of the Bhalas Peninsula. At his side the young recruit and standard bearer, Morrigan, limped. The boy looked ragged, his frail body nearly drowning amongst the thick furs and his deep, sunken blue eyes looked positively exhausted. He had been hurt in the battle with the naked whore and was one of the two men the witch had identified as dangerous. As Sharee looked, his eyes met hers and she had to avert her gaze from his. There was something about those eyes that made her shiver, a remarkable thing indeed.

“Thank you, Sharee!” The grizzled old veteran said. “Thank you for your advice and your efforts. I will chain young Dere… Morrigan, to the other one, Stanos, tonight”. The Captain looked at Morrigan who had visibly winced at the captain’s words. It was as if the Captain had slapped him. “I am sorry, Morrigan” the captain apologized.

The mercenaries tucked in and a silence of sorts descended upon the camp. The wind buffeted the tent canvas and the shadows from the fireplace danced upon its white fabric. Solstra’s psychotic whispers of vengeance and the soft whimpering of the chained men could still be heard, but sleep arrived swiftly, delivering the exhausted crew into a comatose void.
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Offline CaptainPenguin

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #62 on: September 05, 2005, 06:13:03 PM »
With startling suddeness, Domunsoka hisses; men leap back from their spots about the fire, where they had eyed him edgily while eating tough strips of fried jerky.
The ghost doll's black-purple lips roll back from grey gums, revealing teeth like slabs of dagger-bone, and the creature sinks wooden and flesh fingers into the hard soil beneath it, pitching itself awkwardly onto the ground where, curling into a ball like a dog, it proceeds to sleep fitfully, keeping the soldiers around it on edge with it's somnolent twitches and whispers.

The air around it is tingly with static as it slumbers.
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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #63 on: September 06, 2005, 09:46:38 PM »
The day was almost over, the sun nearing the horizon's edge. Night was drifting ever closer to the pair of males standing in the forest clearing, one young and one old. The younger was standing in a draw stance, ready to unsheath his sword at a moment's notice. The older was watching him, lips moving ever so slightly, barely loud enough for the lad to hear.

"Okay Flint, let's try this one more time, then we'll quit for the day." The old man moved to the side, away from the area of Flint's draw. Even a novice could be dangerous in this art. "Close your eyes and clear your mind. Let yourself become empty of all thought and emotion. Narrow your perception of that void to a single image. Visualize what you want to do in your mind's eye. Make that thought, that focus, your entire existence."

A moment of silence ensued, a moment when the sound of a silver pellet would have been so loud it might have given the listener a headache. Then, breaking the clearing's silence, a single barked command.

"Draw!"

Like a flash of lightning the weapon in Flint's hand left it's sheath, and with it came another, older power than that of muscle. The air become hotter than a forge in the busiest hours of summer, and in the wake of the shamshir's blade there glowed a crimson and gold arc of fire.

Within a few seconds the air cooled back to normal temperatures, but the memories of both the teacher and the student bore witness to the reality of the fire, and the spirit that had called it thus.
P(A|B) = P(B|A)*P(A)/P(B)

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Offline Maggot

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #64 on: September 07, 2005, 10:06:18 AM »
There he was,the mysterious bonze skinned stranger,standing on top of the vast sand dune that towered over her. It was good to be back in her childhood homeland again,even if she could only remember it dimly now. And even better to be in the presence of this man.
 
Naked he was,with not a scrap of clothing to cover his glorious male beauty. Just seeing him  up there and gazing at her with an oddly familiar gaze,it made Solstra's heart quicken. She had never seen him before in all her existence,and yet there was this nagging feeling that he had once been part of the life she had been so cruelly torn away from when that gruesome swine of a slave merchant had come for her.
 
He continued to stare at her with those deep brown  eyes of his,and this time much to her surprise,the look was more than just familiar. Love now filled his eyes,a love so deep and unfullfiled that simply seeing it expressed in his eyes drove her close to tears.
 
''Remember''. he was speaking now,in a soft,gentle voice that reminded her of the winds whistling through the boughs of the dessert scyamores.. ''When you are abandoned by all,when dire peril confronts you,hesitate not to call on me,for I will always be there for you..''

And with those words,he dissolved before her very eyes into the wind...
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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #65 on: September 08, 2005, 06:42:47 AM »
OOC: No. This was where those who wanted to post dreams of their own could do so. Please note that Chaosmark has now entered his dream and it is entirely new. If you want Solstra to have a dream, you can write one too. But do not present your previous dream, the one you received from me, at this stage. You can do so if you want to, like Captain did with his Domunsoka-awakens post at the beginning of the Chapter (or through conversation at a later stage). If you want to post a dream for this night, edit your post above this one.

The Journey to Ûr-Keldon
Sleep, though much needed, lasted only for a few pain-ridden hours. At dawn the mercenaries awoke, their tattoos itching and their skin sore, their mouths dry and tasting of blood. Of their dreams they remembered little, but for some reason it was as if the fluttering of wings lingered for a few seconds after their awakening. The cold had stolen into the weary mercs, and chilled everyone to their bones.

Steam escaped from Hans’s lips as he exhaled wearily. Rubbing the crust from his eyes, he quickly slipped into a new pair of woollen undergarments that the Captain had provided and groggily began his laborious armour donning routine. After a while the curly blonde sergeant exited his tent and joined the rest for breakfast around the fireplace. The wind had relented and the sky was clear, the deep blue horizon and the rising morning sun illuminating the mountains. A few strips of beef jerky and some beans in sweet tomato sauce was all that was available, for Marcus and his men had spirited away most of the supply salvaged from the ambush, as well as the mercenary company funds. During that gloomy breakfast Craeth decided that the mercenaries would split in two groups. One group, led by Craeth, would take the longer northern path around the mountain and would arrive at Ûr-Keldon from behind later that day, while Sternflucht would lead his men, now including Roack, Hunthar and Solstra, straight up the main path, which would take them to the lower gates within four hours. The whining slave was treated well by the grizzled old captain, and she was promised gold as well as the opportunity to avenge herself. Marcus was to be hers when she arrived at the summit and, the captain promised, there ought to be plenty of gold to each now that most of the mercs were either dead or had deserted.

The journey proved to be harder to Roack than to any of the others. While the rest of Sternflucht’s squad seemed more or less unfazed by the thin air and the infernal cold, Roack slipped ever farther behind. It probably doesn’t help much that I slept poorly tonight the cowardly merc thought, for his sleep had been interrupted by a strange whispering all night long. He never did determine the source, but he had been startled awake several times, clamping his ears shut to no avail. Looking up, Roack noticed that the others had stopped and nearly walked into Domunsoka. The unnerving construct held a sword in his wooden hand and stood alongside the others, studying the snow covered, towering outer walls of the fallen city of Ûr-Keldon.

Guardian fu dogs were carved into the outer wall, their heads emerging from huge blocks of stone. Beneath the lion dogs, ornate runes had been carved and Sharee spoke loudly as she scanned them. “I see Mehral, the rune of divine protection, and I see others, some I know and some I don’t. There…” Sharee pointed to a spiralling rune, “it is the rune Khren, the rune of containment, and there beside it to the left, the one shaped as a pointed triangle, is Fhethr, the severing rune, used by magi to interrupt their own or others’ magic”.

The arching gateway was unblocked and when the mercenaries entered it, they found the city intact, as opposed to the ruins they had expected. Three and four story buildings towered on both sides of the narrow main road, ending in black tiled roofs many meters above, blocking the sunlight. Wrapped in the shadows caused by the scarce sunlight were tall, gaunt statues carved in the semblance of nude and lordly men, which lined the street. Some hundred meters further up the road was a square at a sunny intersection where a fountain had been covered with a thin layer of snow. It felt warmer here, within the city walls and through an arching doorway to the left, an overgrown garden, devoid of any snow, could be spotted; its trees were in full blossom and tall grass blanketed the ground. Several signs were hung above the doorways along the narrow, shadowy main street. Some were painted with pints of foaming beer, while others marked smithies and a clothier. There was a strange sign beside the sign of a jeweller’s store, and that sign was shaped like a hexagonal star with an eye in its midst. A thin bridge connected two of the buildings and the streets were cobbled with only a few wafts of powdery snow stuck between the cobbled stones.

Through the streets a faint whisper could be heard; malign voices which felt as if they promised death and horrible torture to those who listened. Though no one could be seen, it was as if hateful eyes stared upon Sternflucht and his men. Additionally a distant, low chant could be heard; eerie guttural voices chanting in a weird, foreign tongue. Hans Sternflucht instinctively drew his sword and stepped back from the gate, so he could watch both what happened within the city and his men as well.

“Any clever ideas?” he whispered, as if the enemy was waiting on the other side of that gate.
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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #66 on: September 10, 2005, 03:17:35 AM »
Eyeing the shadows, Sternflucht gripped his sword with both hands. The gaunt statues were wrapped in shadow, their thin limbs strangely life-like as was their deep eye sockets. The towering buildings had gargoyles and angelic statues jutting out from the facade, creating something akin to a pantheon of dread, silent observers crowding above the streets. The city was strangely devoid of life and not a living soul walked on the main street, though the  buildings and shops seemed strangely well kept.

Then, in the corners of his eye, Sternflucht noticed movement. High above the street, on the roof of a building some fifty meters away, a shadowy figure perched and it was drawing a massive composite bow. "Assassin!" the sergeant yelled,  and dashed through the gate and into the lush garden to the left of the street.
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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #67 on: September 10, 2005, 04:16:04 AM »
Flipping a somersault, I dashed into the shadows near the jeweller's store. Bowmen had this strange obsession with shooting mages first - I did not intent to let him succeed.

Surveying my surroundings, I noticed the sign... was it known to me? Known from the strange and painful dreams?

I always felt this knot in my stomach when someone was trying to kill me. From his vantage point, the street was certainly as clear to him as if it was drawn on his palm... oh, were I a bird, with wings of storm and claws of thunder... but being land-bound, there was little what I could do to get him down from his perch. If all else failed, a little fire might do the trick - though whether I'd last to finish the incantation I doubted.
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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #68 on: September 10, 2005, 08:41:30 AM »
Hot on the rapidly retreating heels of Hans,Solstra thundered after Hans into the what she hoped was the shelter of the garden,her heart beating in her chest. Gods,did death seem intent on dogging their steps?

''Hans'',she gasped to the mercenary captain as she drew to a panting halt beside him. ''Are we out of range yet?''.
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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #69 on: September 11, 2005, 11:26:53 AM »
Domunsoka darts, a tan-black flash through the sharp shadows of the street. Hurling itself through a half-open doorway, the creature bellows a thunderous roar.
It's wooden digitsdrift across it's wooden chest, to the torn flap of skin pinned across it. It feels the tingling of the flesh there, the scarred dullness of the stylized Dual-Faced Warrior.
The ghost doll becomes aware of the Divine Thing, once again babbling in his mind: ...on and on and on you viper you snake hidden threat like scorpions under the boot above the ground below the sky within the world we'll climb like squirrels like corpses like fiends we'll climb up and up and up and up and up and take a head and squeeze it like a melon squeeze it until it breaks smash into shards gore spilling spraying pulp of brain like custard upon hands...

The flesh-wood creature crawls to the edge of the doorway, and examines its location. A quick dash across the street, and then it must haul itself upward onto the assassin's perch... But how to do that? It snarls and flicks the air with it's hideous tongue.
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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #70 on: September 11, 2005, 12:53:20 PM »
Hunthar looked up at Han's cry of assassin and broke into a run to the building marked as a smithy, checking quickly for anyone else within before looking outside to where the others were hiding from the bowman. What were they going to do now?

Looking around the room, Hunthar searched for anything that might be of use, now or later.
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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #71 on: September 11, 2005, 01:47:07 PM »
Roack Shivered uncontrollably, Things were making sense now.
The whisperings, the fragmented dreams, and that sheer, undiluted terror at the back of his mind. She was coming to kill him.

He ran after Hunthar, looking for shelter with the blacksmith, regurgitating the contents of his stomach on the floor.

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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #72 on: September 12, 2005, 04:02:08 AM »
"Dunce!" I called to Flare, who was still standing in the gateway, lost in thought. Most probably thinking of a new recipe - culinary or otherwise, something nice, given the smile.

"You ... little... dammit." My trail of thought was lost, as I saw the still absent-minded Flare. No time for magic. No time for thought.

Now is now.

'Who wants to live forever anyway?' I thought as I flung myself across the street to push Flare away from the open lot, into the salubrious shadows of the so alluringly solid corners and nooks.
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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #73 on: September 12, 2005, 09:26:15 AM »
Sharee’s first flight into the shadows of the jeweller’s store was nearly her last for an arrow thudded through her fur cloaks and glanced her butt. From the rooftops the assassin let forth a guttural growl of disappointment, a disturbing rolling sound that, for some reason, made Sharee shiver. Studying her right buttock she discovered that the robe had been ripped asunder and an angry red streak was displayed across its length, from the upper right and down to the left. As she watched, the wound burst and blood began to trickle forth.

Hans and Solstra crept through the lush garden. The trees were in bloom and ripe with oranges, pears and fruit of every kind, most of them unknown to the two mercenaries. As Solstra asked her question, Sternflucht plucked an especially delicious looking yellow fruit, shaped like an overly large plum, and began sucking the juices from it. His gauntleted hand looked brutal in comparison with the fruit and it burst when he squeezed it too hard. “Out of range? We are out of sight, but certainly not out of range! Keep your head low and avoid being seen through any of those windows!” Hans pointed to the arched windows that were present on the highest elevation of the garden, which was layered in several levels. Those windows probably gave a vista of the alleys between the main road buildings.

Domunsoka’s dash through the street was largely unhassled, though it noticed that the assassin made an attempt at Sharee’s life. When Domunsoka had reached the assassin's building it noticed the presence of a circular masonry stairwell in the alley, something which would enable it to ascend three floors. Then it would have to scale the walls for another floor in order to reach the assassin. As an alternative it could scale the façade, something made possible by several windows and façade-statues.

Though Roack froze for a long second, enabling the assassin to notch another arrow, Hunthar and Roack reached the relative safety of the smithy. Hunthar arrived first and gaped in awe at the interior. Within this ghost town of a city, he found the most exquisite and impressive smithy he had ever witnessed, which was even more impressive considered the fact that Hunthar hailed from the City of Therben. The anvil was colossal, with runes of power inscribed upon its surface and even upon the hammer. It was likewise with the fireplace, an open circle coal-pit, which was ringed with round, carefully placed and rune-inscribed stones.

The minute he stepped inside Roack doubled over and threw up in sheer terror, an act that proved costly as an arrow hit his left foot. It was  still outside the doorway; the befuddled mercenary had not his wits about him. He felt an explosion of pain as the arrow pierced his armour and skewered his Achilles heel, nailing it to the doorframe.

Sharee’s elven ears could hear the composite bow being drawn, the creaking of its wooden components, as she limped hurriedly across the street to push Flare away from the gate. Flare seemed lost in some kind of euphoric trance and did not hear their shouts. As she ran towards him he smiled at first, it seemed almost as if he was about to wave, and then his face contorted with sudden horror and realization. “Nooooo!” He screamed as the assassin released the arrow into its lethal flight, its path straight towards Sharee’s neck. With blinding speed, the alchemist crashed into the would-be saviour and they rolled through the gateway of the mysterious garden. Though they both heard the arrow whizzle past their ears, another sound was more frightening… The sound of several of the alchemist’s vials bursting from the impact of their fall.

Domunsoka had witnessed what happened to his friends and when he returned his attention to the building, he heard soft, retreating footsteps on the rooftops. It was a well known fact that assassins with a desire for a long life never stayed for long in one location.
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Chapter 1: Ûr-Keldon [ON HOLD]
« Reply #74 on: September 12, 2005, 04:45:29 PM »
Domunsoka gave a hiss of frustration. Ascending the outside stairwell with lizardlike quickness, it gazed upward at the position of the former assassin.
Turning to look down onto the street, it gave a second croaking bellow, and snarled one nearly-unintelligible word, "out", which echoed across the empty facades.
On the banister by Domunsoka's gnarled claw, a large raven landed, studiously fluffed itself, and cocked it's head, as if to look the ghost doll in the eye. Then, with an answering shriek, it launched and flapped shadowy over the barren, snowy rooftops.
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