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Author Topic: The Last War  (Read 69478 times)

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Offline Scrasamax

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #700 on: April 15, 2006, 07:51:08 AM »
The King was held rapt by the bizarre exchange between the troll and the heap of foliage, but was released by the sudden grating rasp of Grumple's snoring. Damar was still standing in one place, staring now defiantly at the King. "I have forsaken my oath of fealty to thee, King. I now serve Mayleaf and no other." Damar said. "You lost my alliegance when you slew the holy man."

"Do not be so righteous with me, Inquisitor. My handiwork ended his pain. Do no think yourself so lofty." He said, now looking over the mass of the bog shambler. Sure enough, half a dozen fronds of kingsfoil sprouted along its top, or what was its top at the moment. "My actions were impulsive and wrong. I will atone for them later." he took a handful of the fronds, each almost a foot long, and cut them free from the shambler. He hoped that compared to the smoldering gashes in its hide, the loss of a few leaves would be of no consequence.

"It is the divine right of a King to rule." The King said, "And there are two things above all others that mark an annointed king over a usurper. The first is the bond between a King and his Kingdom. Should the land suffer, so shall the king. The dead have made me weak, and my senses at times addled. For this I can only seek forgiveness and atonement. The second is the power to heal, though I know of no Kings who used this power to heal anything other than a virtuous knight or damsel on death's door. Myself I have done it only one time and that was on you, Holly." He said.

"I doubt very much if you remember but your father and you had come to visit. I think you were perhaps five at the time, if that old. A destrier, one of my own horses lashed out at you, kicking you quite squarely in the chest. I used the power then, to mend the ribs and your punctured lung." He heaved a deep sigh. "I can only hope that I can do something for him." The King said.

He knelt by Grumple's side, his beard and mustaches blowing in the gale of Grumple's snores. He put part of a frond in his mouth and chewed it. After a second he took the damp wad of plant fibers and placed it into the wound around the spear point. "After a bit, the kingsfoil should cause the swelling to reduce and make the weapon easier to remove. Belzar has enchanted it that I cannot touch it myself."


Stout Lagerale of the Dwarven Guild
STR: 4 | END: 4 | CON: 4 | DEX: 2 | CHA: 2 | INT: 4

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Offline Callista Miala Moonshade

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #701 on: April 16, 2006, 09:58:57 AM »
Holly thought back dusting off memorys long forgotten. Holly looked deep inside herself. A tall black horse whinnie. scared by something. The hind legs kicking backwards. Holly flying through the air pain clutching at her stomach. She landed in a heap. five years old she didn't cry but tears off pain ran down her cheeks. The memory was coming clear more defined. The horse had been freightened by something but Holly didnt know what. Holly couldn't catch her breath. She wheezed heavily as the rib stuck in her lung threating to fill it with blood and suffocate her. The blood gurgled up into her throat and she coughed. Blood splattered on the floor. Her father had run over to her and was stroking her neat blonde hair now in a strange tangle of knots and dust. The King of Palaten had walked over calm as anything and placed his hands on her ribs. Holly winced as more pain shot through her body. The memory faded slightly and she snapped back to reality "I remember. The horse had been scared of something! I was trying to get rid of it when it lashed out at me. I could've died if it wasn't for you" She looked down at the floor "I thank you but sometimes i wish i had!" Holly stood up and walked over to the King. "You were always a good king but you killed one of our friends. In one we should kill you for what you have done. But i will not for you are my family. but i can not stop any of the others from doing it. But i do say this to them if you decide it must be done then think know that he is trying to save another of our lives."
'What goes up!! Must come down,"

Offline Dream

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #702 on: April 16, 2006, 01:57:16 PM »
As the scarlet flames crackled outside the gates of Halbad's castle, evening wore on into night.  Many of the town's populace had joined in with the Legion troops dancing around the fires, and a surprising amount of previously "destroyed" alcoholic beverages had somehow turned up for public consumption.  So many excited men and women were there now that the girls who had been tied up were released or just slipped out of their bonds and ran away.  Nobody missed them.  There were plenty of willing participants available for whatever came to mind.  In sum, a staggering display of public drunkeness and debauchery -- or just an excellent party, depending upon your point of view.

Cheers went up whenever "Centurion" Fellstrom showed his face to the crowd from the balcony of the manor house.  However, each time he looked out, his frown grew deeper.

"Where the H*** are you, Belzar?" he groused for the 30th time.  He turned and went back into the plush inner room to sit down again... but was surprised to find Lord Belzar reclining upon the couch he had just left, holding up the general's sword to the brightly burning oil light.

The dark lord was wearing green robes trimmed with spotless ermine, glistening white like the purest driven snow.  However, Fellstrom noticed this did not completely cover the close-fitting black plate-mail armour which showed beneath the outer garment.

"A fine sword," said the summoner, as he examined the gilded runes scribed deeply in the hardened steel blade.  "Your gift, was it not, from Emperor Arctrus Ankyrus?  He still favors you, Flavius...  ...as long as you produce results."

"I might say the same for you, wizard.  But your untoward summoning of those little devils killed dozens of my men, and not for good reason.  Why was warning not given?  I would have pulled them back from the city to safety."

"DO YOU THINK THAT SUMMONING THE BLACK WIND IS LIKE ORDERING UP A PLATTER OF SWEETMEATS?!!" the wizard shouted; the cords in his neck showing beneath the black chain mail hood that was pulled back under the ermine collar.  "I saved you hundreds of soldiers by ending the fight for Halbad in one fell swoop!!"

"Settle yourself, Balfors.  Settle.  Emperor Ankyrus has given us orders to carry out.  We should work together.  To mutual advantage."  Fellstrom watched carefully until the summoner relaxed somewhat.

"Yes, Flavius.  To mutual advantage."  Belzar flicked the sword to the Centurion, who knew where it would appear and caught it by the hilt.  The Legion's commander sheathed it with a fluid motion.

"By the way," said Belzar,  "the King of Halbad seems to have found some steel in his backbone after all.  And his impetuous niece is within the castle as well.  If your men get to them before I do, tell them I want these two alive, and not damaged any more than necessary."

"Aye, Balfors!"  Fellstrom laughed darkly.  "Now, let me hear your plan to overrun Castle Halbad."

"Stop thinking, and Dream."  /  Selene Nightwalker

Offline POG

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #703 on: April 16, 2006, 11:24:47 PM »
OOC:  I posted after Scras and it dissappeared somehow.  I'm a little vexed right now.  Don't know what happened.
"Pain can be your greatest ally, from pain you can learn to apply it, endure it and avoid it. Without pain there is no understanding of reality. If you never get hit with the things you strike out with every thing you know is pure fiction."
 
The Ares Chronicles

Offline Nobody

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #704 on: April 16, 2006, 11:26:58 PM »
OOC:yeah, me too. Whats up with that.
"I am just a figment of my imagination" -"Loki", Illusionist Trickster

Offline POG

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #705 on: April 16, 2006, 11:48:51 PM »
OCC:  Nobody check out the lost posts thread.  Strolen has recovered the lost posts.
"Pain can be your greatest ally, from pain you can learn to apply it, endure it and avoid it. Without pain there is no understanding of reality. If you never get hit with the things you strike out with every thing you know is pure fiction."
 
The Ares Chronicles

Offline POG

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #706 on: April 17, 2006, 12:32:55 AM »
OOC: For what it's worth Strolen's the man.  Here's my post, retrieved by socereous means unknown to those not of the inner circle of power. 

IC: Baldwin looked at Grumple's fallen form, concern creased his rugged features. His thoughts were with his brother as well.  Rory looked to be sleeping peacefully and his leg looked better. Baldwin turned to the King and tried to make his tone respectful, although truth be told his brother was far better at the diplomacy speaking to monarchs required.  But alas he felt he had to try.

"Your majesty, what do you intend to do to defeat the legion and dispell them from your city?"  He turned slightly away, with a grimace.  That hadn't come out at all as he intended.  It wasn't the man's fault.  He ran his hand thru his hair.  What do you know of Belzar and how can we defeat him?"  That too came out as if he were asking a second to give him a report.  Baldwin was beginning to think he should've kept his mouth shut. What would Rory say?

"How can we help?"  This from Rory who, awake, looked up at the group with owlish eyes, looking extremely fatigued.  He rubbed at his leg which showed no signs of the luminesece and displayed pink skin that was very much intact.  He threw Holly a wink.  "Who's got food?"
"Pain can be your greatest ally, from pain you can learn to apply it, endure it and avoid it. Without pain there is no understanding of reality. If you never get hit with the things you strike out with every thing you know is pure fiction."
 
The Ares Chronicles

Offline Dream

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #707 on: April 17, 2006, 07:36:03 AM »
OCC:  Lost posts?  Must be black magic.  Lots of that around.

No, really, if you want me to back out something I wrote and then you insert your post, I'm all for it.  I have more fun reading the great stuff you write than anything.  Generally, I copy my latest post to MS Word before clicking on the "Post" button, since I've lost a number myself.  Just don't copy back to Strolen unless you have to, since the formatting codes don't import well.

Also, if you need a complete file of this thread in Word, I have one.  I keep it up to date.  (You would need to sent me your EMail in a PM, since I don't want my address "harvested" by the accursed spamming web-crawler bots.)  My file is a whole lot faster than trying to scroll back through Strolen to find out something that we wrote months ago.
"Stop thinking, and Dream."  /  Selene Nightwalker

Offline Nobody

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #708 on: April 17, 2006, 09:25:05 AM »
Kethal wasn't very good with healing, but she knew a little. She casted a simple spell to detect the metal within an area. It would tell her the status of the spear lodged in grumples chest.

It wasn't good. The spear was actually inside his heart. Grumples heart was, miraculously, stillbeating, beating around the spear head, pushing blood out as fast as it was pushing blood through. What was worse, was that the barbed spear was firmly lodged in the heart of grumple, and pulling it might mean, would probably mean, pulling out his heart as well, swelling or no swelling. Kethal could also feel the evil of the spear. she could not be sure, but the spear was probably protected from holy magic.

It was evident that there was no more help inside the castle for the troll, and Kethal was nervous in these catacombs anyway. After a quick spell, she carefully, so very carefully, she lifted the troll. It was hard. The creature weighed a considerable amount.

Kethal swore that she would never understand these people. They treated the troll like an ally, yet they talked about politics while he died on the ground. She understood necessity, but ignoring the death of an ally hardly qualified. If nothing else, even if she could not find healing in time, she could get him out of this place, this stone labrynth that trapped the soul.

Everything in balance. With less repect for these people as she had once had, and a little contempt, she left the room with the troll.
"I am just a figment of my imagination" -"Loki", Illusionist Trickster

Offline Dream

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #709 on: April 17, 2006, 04:43:53 PM »
OCC:  Nobody, you read minds.  Even at this distance.  Perfect post.


IC:  Thus carried aloft, Grumple snored on, rivaling the sonic output of a brass band engaged in playing a spirited March; or at least that of an excellent party.

The latter, of course, was going on outside the gates of Castle Halbad.  Nearly all the guard inside the castle watched from the ramparts and parapets, wistfully sighing at the sights they beheld down below illuminated by the roaring firelights.  No one noticed the armoured woman behind them in the darkness below carrying a snoring troll.

"Why don' the king throw a party fer us?" grumbled Brendan Pipkin, from the third tower, to no one in particular.  He shifted his bow to the other hand and stared down.

"Cuz somebodys got to watch for The Enemy, stupid.  You get useless as dog dung when you're drunk." replied Cormac Altergast, standing nearby. 

"It-ud be good, y'know, for morale and all, right?" continued Pipkin... 
Then, "By Saint Logan's Holy Aura!  Look at what that woman is doin'!!  Is that possible??"

"I'da never believed it if you'da tol me, Pip." said Altergast.  "An' Saint Logans got NUTHIN' to do wit' it.  Shuddup `n' watch." 

Indeed, they watched.  Squirming about uneasily, both men continued to stare down into the darkness at the party. 

"Stop thinking, and Dream."  /  Selene Nightwalker

Offline Dream

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #710 on: April 17, 2006, 02:30:21 PM »
Deep below the feet of Messer's Pipkin and Altergast, deep, deep below them and many, many others within Castle Halbad... a very different conversation was unfolding.

Lord Belzar and General Fellstrom stood in a winding and perfectly circular underground tunnel carved in the stone, confronted by an enormous warrior in heavy plate and chain mail which barred their way.  The warrior stood easily 7 feet tall, with shoulders a yard wide if they were an inch.  His helmet obscured his face and nearly brushed the roof of the tunnel, and strangely, instead of a sword or spear, he held an enormous... Shovel across his mighty chest.

Fellstrom hissed to the dark lord,  "Bones of Baal!  I thought you said you wanted me to meet your 'Little Friend'.  Where did this colossus come from?"

Belzar whispered,  "Indeed I did, Flavius.  There he is, back there, behind the giant.  It's a package deal.  They're inseparable."

The general continued, "Did these two dig this tunnel to the walls of the castle overnight?  Even with a spade such as that!  How is it possible?  We stand in solid stone!"

Belzar nudged him.  "Be still.  The mole men have their ways.  I do not understand how they do it, but if you want something dug, nobody digs like the legendary Graandu people.  Silence!  They are timid.  He approaches."

"Stop thinking, and Dream."  /  Selene Nightwalker

Offline Dream

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #711 on: April 18, 2006, 09:05:15 PM »
As the two men stared into the underground gloom, a tiny but brilliant blue flame was seen approaching from the total darkness of the yawning black tunnel.  It came from a plain metallic staff held by a diminutive figure barely 4 feet tall.  He waddled up silently behind the guard with the shovel who stood without any hint of motion. 

The mole-man was dressed in thick brown robes with a high collar, and only his head, hands, and feet showed.  The head had no apparent neck, and was nestled deep within the collar.  This head was covered with a fine gray fur and the little fellow wore a thick pair of spectacles held on with a strap.  The tip of his thick nose was pink and hairless, with several bumps and protrusions.

His hands were huge for his size, and appeared powerful.  They were like shovels, with sharp metallic claws protruding from soft leather gloves.  His feet were likewise proportioned, barefoot, and covered with the same gray fur as his head. 

He turned and squeaked rapidly in some unrecognizable language to the warrior, then turned to Belzar and Fellstrom.  "Greetings, greetings, General.  I am oolooGonio Klaatu and oolooGonia Endera.  Master Belzar, I have examined, examined the foundations of the castle above.  In accordance with our agreement, our agreement, I am prepared to commence the final dig."

"In 9.23 of your hours, the mining will be complete, be complete, and the western wall of the castle will suddenly collapse outward.  Prepare your troops."

He looked up at the astonished face of Centurion Fellstrom.  Fellstrom tried to look into his eyes but could not see through the thick glass of the mole man's goggles.

Klaatu looked thoughtful for a moment, then he spoke in his thin voice once more.  "That would be...  would be one hour past dawn on the surface.  Now, be off.  I have work to do." 

"Stop thinking, and Dream."  /  Selene Nightwalker

Offline POG

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #712 on: April 18, 2006, 09:46:54 PM »
Rory stood, testing the weight of his newly healed leg.  It tingled a little as if from lack of circulation but other than that it seemed to be fine.  Baldwin nodded at his brother who set off after Kethal.  Baldwin followed.  They had to find a way to heal Grumple.  "Where the hell is Arthur?"  Baldin grumbled...

OOC:  Nobody, lemme know if you're plans for Kethal will be hampered by the brother's presence and I'll edit this post.
"Pain can be your greatest ally, from pain you can learn to apply it, endure it and avoid it. Without pain there is no understanding of reality. If you never get hit with the things you strike out with every thing you know is pure fiction."
 
The Ares Chronicles

Offline Dream

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #713 on: April 19, 2006, 08:00:09 PM »
Back at the manor-home, Centurion Fellstrom tried to make sense of what he had seen.

"Balfors.  Before you go, "off" somewhere again, like you always do, tell me about this Grandoo guy."

"No.  It's Graandu.  Graa-aan-du." corrected Lord Belzar.  "The mythical 'mole men'.  Ever suspected, seldom seen."

"Here is the short version.  Nobody knows much about them.  An ancient race.  They live underground, and can dig like nobody else.  Most of what the Dwarves know about mining and smelting they learned from the Graandu.  Have you heard of Mithryl-metal?"  Fellstrom nodded.

"Well," continued Belzar.  "Graandu consider it to be inferior to their better castings.  Your sword, please."  Fellstrom unsheathed it and looked at it.  The finest sword he had ever held, bar none, even before the Emperor had enchanted it.

Belzar took the sword.  "See this little mark at the base of the hilt?  That's a Graandu mark.  One of them made it, long ago.  That is why it can slice stone, and why you have to use that diamond-studded sharpening stone to hone it.  They use no visible ornamentation.  They can't see it, and don't care anyway.  They don't care about gold, or jewels, or wealth, although they have access to all they can dig up.  They know everything about the underground world.  Uncanny sense of smell.  Some other senses I can't quite determine."

"Some say they are alchemists, some say they are clerics.  Some ancient texts mention necromancy in secret places.  I think they are all these things, more or less."

"So how did you find this Gra-an-du guy?  He had a long name.  What is the agreement he mentioned down there that you made with him?" questioned the general.

"Oh.  Yes.  That."  replied Belzar.  "Call him "Klaatu."  He was living near the surface, in a cave.  I searched long for one of these mole men... you know I always like to have resources available.  From what little I have learned from him, he is not welcome by his own people.  Fraternized with humans and dwarves too much.  He lives on the surface with that animated statue.  Yes, it's solid metal.  Easily a ton.  He never goes anywhere without it."

"Don't try to fight it, Flavius.  It's unstoppable.  I've seen it in combat.  6 armed orcs and a fully armoured heavy hog-rider all smashed like ground meat.  But, even though I managed to mark the statue while the mole man wasn't looking, I have been unable to summon it.  So, there is a life force inside which I cannot command."

"Klaatu wanted some sort of magical staff of healing.  I've heard of it, but don't know where it is.  I think he's desperate to get it, so I told him I would help him.  He's quite gullible, and trusts me completely."  Belzar grinned wickedly when he said that.

"Now, general, go tell your troops to be ready to assault the castle in the morning."

   


« Last Edit: April 19, 2006, 08:18:06 PM by Dream »
"Stop thinking, and Dream."  /  Selene Nightwalker

Offline Dream

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #714 on: April 19, 2006, 08:04:25 PM »
OCC:  Sorry for the long posts.  Its introductory stuff.  Obviously, I like Klaatu and "the animated statue" a lot, and wanted to bring you up to speed.  So, don't kill them off, please.  Thanks!
"Stop thinking, and Dream."  /  Selene Nightwalker

Offline Dream

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #715 on: April 19, 2006, 08:15:05 PM »
Klaatu looked at the fading light where Belzar and Fellstrom had disappeared from the underground tunnel.  The huge armoured warrior turned toward the little mole-man and looked down at him, and then put his metal gauntlet on Klaatu's shoulder.

Klaatu looked up and spoke rapidly to the towering form, in the Graandu language of almost ultrasonic squeals and squeaks.  "<Yes, Braandu.  Bel-zar is a mage.  Bad.  I trust him neither.  We must be careful.  But he is powerful and can help us.>" 

Klaatu turned back to the tunnel that disappeared in the darkness under the castle's west wall.

"<Please guard now, son.  I love you, too.>"
"Stop thinking, and Dream."  /  Selene Nightwalker

Offline Nobody

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #716 on: April 20, 2006, 06:12:39 AM »
OOC: No, your characters are not only welcome, they are encouraged to join. In fact, if you want, you can feel free to assume that they followed after.

Also, sorry for any spelling and grammer mistakes. I don't have time to proof read right now.

IC:Kethal followed her steps out of the castle, literally. Instead of simply leaving the castle, she followed the path in, but in reverse. It was the nature of the spell she had cast. It was a spell to find the pathway out. Unfortunately, it was only able to backtrack the exact way that had been travelled by the castle, so that it was somewhat cumbersome indoors (where several stops might be made before reaching a location) and completely useless if a wall had collapsed or a door had been sealed. Kethal did not have the ability to use divining magic, which almost exclusive to clerics and other divine spellcasters.

So, Kethal stopped by the torture room, walked into the room, followed her steps around the room, and then followed them back out again. A silent prayer later, she was headed to the secret tunnel.

Kethal moved the door open very carefully, and stepped out into the sanguine darkness that had now enveloped the world around them. As soon as her feet entered the open space, she breathed a very long awaited sigh of relief. She was out inj the open again. Well, not out in the open exactly, but it was a far cry better then being locked inside that prison that these people called a building.

Two gaurds stood not far off, but they were drunk and distracted, and Kethal, not having time for them, slipped by easily, even with the troll...
« Last Edit: April 20, 2006, 01:08:22 PM by Nobody »
"I am just a figment of my imagination" -"Loki", Illusionist Trickster

Offline Nobody

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #717 on: April 20, 2006, 06:43:32 AM »
Arthur heard the door opening before he saw them from his hiding place. He jumped to his feet, letting the magical booklight cantrip vanish from sight. As he looked from his spot, he saw Kethal, folowed by Baldwin and Rory.

Immediately, and covertly, he pulled them to the side. "Where have you been. I have been looking for you all day" He spoke to Kethal.

"There isn't time Arthur. He needs healing, badly."

Arthurs thought process stopped dead in his tracks. He wanted to talk to Kethal, to tell her that he had waited tirelessly out here for them, to converse with her. To touch her.

But he needed to heal the creature, even if it was a troll. Human or not, it was dying, and deep inside Arthur, a part of him would be dying too unless he did something.

Ironic that a troll would infest his dreams if he failed, but true, and now Arthur had a new priority

"Put him down, and hold him down. this will be tricky"

A moment later, Arthur was pondering over what to do. This was beyond even his skill. Vital organs were different from the rest of the body when healing was concerned. They were much harder. The spear, while causeing grumples problem, would also kill him if it were removed. If the spear was pulled out, then all of the blood would pump out through the hole in his heart, and grumple would not heal, because no blood (if you could really call it that) was moving through.

Worse, the spear had infected the region with a taint that prevented magic from touching it. Arthur could bypass the taint, but not with the spear in grumple, and then it would take some time. Time that was not there.

Arthur looked at the situation dumbstruck for a moment, hopelessness and despair on his face. Arthur would have to sit and watch as this creature died...

"Thats it!" came his hushed voice over the sounds of parties and orgies.

Immediately he began flipping through his book, and an moments he was at the page he wanted. He studied it carefully for a moment, then looked at grumple, then back at the page. Quickly, he placed the book, page open on the ground.

"You will have to trust me" he said in a quiet voice. It was unclear who he was talking to.

As Arthur channeled, Baldwin could feel the heat of his sword through it's sheath...
« Last Edit: April 20, 2006, 09:48:06 AM by Nobody »
"I am just a figment of my imagination" -"Loki", Illusionist Trickster

Offline Dream

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #718 on: April 20, 2006, 07:54:31 PM »
Grumple slipped in and out of consciousness; just as the brightly coloured butterfly flits from flower to flower, gently lapping up the nectars, gathering strength for the long migration ahead, while spreading the life-giving pollens from flower to flower that they, too, might be fertilized and grow their seed beneath the warmth of the summer sun.

Even so, in his dreams, Grumple snapped up butterflies and flowers alike, swallowing them whole, branches, stumps, roots, and all.  Some dirt and rocks, too.  (Really good dirt.  The really dirty kind.  All in all, a very satisfying dream.  Expecially the part about gobbling down all the butterflies.)

Luckily, even though they were holding him down, Arthur and Kethal managed to keep their distance from the unconscious troll's business end as he snapped his fantastically powerful jaws in the air, snoring to beat the band. 

Careful!  You could lose an arm that way, you know.
"Stop thinking, and Dream."  /  Selene Nightwalker

Offline Dream

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #719 on: April 20, 2006, 08:45:17 PM »
Exactly 12.32 feet below the bottom of the foundations of the western castle wall, and about 50 feet below the surface of the ground, the mining continued.

Klaatu was tucked behind the protective carapace of the Verm's head, nestled under the thick natural armour of the monster, controlling it with tiny nudges of his needle sharp fingernails.  The Verm was 8 feet in diameter and 72 feet from rounded head to rounded tail, with incredibly thick and strong teeth/studs, and without any hint of arms or legs.  Its head-carapace folded open like the hungry jaws of a dragon, and the fantastically powerful creature drove its head forward with tons of strength into the solid shale base under the castle walls.  Then, the body stiffened and swelled rhythmically, forcing the head into the rock, twisting off huge chunks with a violent shake, and swallowing them whole.  Continuously, the rippling action of the steely muscles within its throat and belly ground the shale into oily dust.

"<LEFT 1.19!  DOWN 2.23!  FORWARD!>" squeaked the mole man to himself as he guided the juggernaut through the rock, leaving a long open tube behind.  Braandu, the armoured warrior, dutifully clumped along after them, and shoveled up the craggy excrement given off by the Verm; carrying it as quickly as he could manage and dumping it down a fissure further back.  Some of the rock waste was melted, and still sizzled from the heat generated by the process.  The glow of the molten mass cast a hellish red glow -- however faint -- in the total darkness of the subterranian tunnel.

Every now and then Klaatu would stop the beast, and lift a gloved hand to the ceiling above.  The teeth-rattling rumbling of the dig would be silenced for a few moments.  In the deafening silence that followed, the mole-man would strike a round ring of thin metal against the rock, and listen acutely to the vibrations, turning his furry head this way and that.  Then, he would press his bulbous nose into the surface of the shale and pick up trace currents from above to double-check the instrument's reading.

Satisfied, the mole man prodded the Verm to proceed.  "<Forward!> he squeaked.  Dig!  Deep inside, he was joyous.  This was what he was created to do.  Dig!  Only 4.13 surface hours to go, and then to collect his reward!
"Stop thinking, and Dream."  /  Selene Nightwalker

Offline POG

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #720 on: April 20, 2006, 11:54:40 PM »
Baldwin tapped Rory on the shoulder.  He drew Final Judgment partially out of its scabbard to display its blue gleam.  "What sorcery is this?"  He glanced about, looking from the cause.  Rory dropped into himself casting about to see if he could discern the cause...
"Pain can be your greatest ally, from pain you can learn to apply it, endure it and avoid it. Without pain there is no understanding of reality. If you never get hit with the things you strike out with every thing you know is pure fiction."
 
The Ares Chronicles

Offline Dream

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #721 on: April 21, 2006, 10:27:28 AM »
OCC:  Hmmm.  Evil healing?  Hmmm.

By the way, Klaatu and Braandu are not evil.  Just pragmatic.  Actually, they're rather good-natured toward humans, elves, dwarves, etc, as a rule; but think little of human wars and fortifications.  They distrust mages, and absolutely hate orcs and... trolls.  Whoops.  I just realized I have a little problem coming up!
"Stop thinking, and Dream."  /  Selene Nightwalker

Offline Callista Miala Moonshade

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #722 on: April 21, 2006, 01:59:42 PM »
Holly turned and noticed that nearly everyone had gone. Tigra gave a little horse shrug and bent down for Holly to climb on. Holly clambered onto the horses back and urged her forward. Tigra ran silently through the hallway out of the castle into the courtyard and towards the hidden door. Holly frowned as she saw it was open. She dismounted Tigra and ran through the door there Grumple was on the floor with kethal, Arthur, Rory and Baldwin all standing round him. Holly looked to final judgment opened her mouth to say something but nothing came out. She looked down at Grumple and knealt on the ground. A large gust of wind wisked through the city and caught at Holly's hair making it flap all around her face.
'What goes up!! Must come down,"

Offline Dream

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #723 on: April 21, 2006, 08:09:56 PM »
OCC:  I'll be away for about 3 weeks.  Nobody, you have played with / against Klaatu and Braandu before.  Feel free to take them over if you need to.  Or, just ignore them, and they'll stay underground!  If anyone else has carefully read "The Rod Of Lordly Might" then you could also use the 2 characters a bit; however, No is the most familiar.  Anybody in this thread is qualified to use Grumple.  I expect you could come up with some really good stuff I never thought of.


IC:  While most of Castle Halbad's inhabitants snored, Fellstrom ordered the assault troops to quietly deploy themselves in the dark of night, mostly to the west of the castle, with many more in reserve.  Two thousand, arranged in the cramped streets ready to advance into the castle.  Two thousand more were to be ready by mid morning after the initial assault.  The city streets were simply too crowded to allow for all of them to attack at once.

He stood there with Lord Belzar looking down from another house balcony outside the southwest corner of the castle as dawn approached.  Little could be seen in the darkness just before dawn.

Suddenly, there was a rumble beneath them.  It grew beneath the house until the lower living room floor started to collapse.  The expensive mahogany floorboards splintered and shattered upward as a huge shovel head protruded, then withdrew.  Next, a massive mailed fist smashed the heavy joists apart and threw them open... then it too withdrew.

Out of the hole clambered the little mole man.

"Belzar!" he spoke in Common, with his squeaky, husky voice.  "I am done, am done.  Here it is."

Lord Belzar, with a dramatic flourish of his hand, disappeared from the upstairs balcony and reappeared by Klaatu.  The furry little miner didn't seem to be impressed by the teleportation.

"Take this bell," he said.  Braandu handed up a large, heavy bell made of an unfamiliar metal to Belzar, who could barely manage to lift it and put it immediately down with a 'thump!' on the remaining floorboards.  The mole man smiled imperceptably at that, then spoke.

"This bell is tuned, is tuned to the slender rock columns left in place.  Descend into the tunnel straight down.  Plug your ears.  Be prepared, prepared to exit instantly, for when you strike the bell, the columns will collapse, will collapse under the weight of the western castle wall above.  You may need, may need to sound it more than once, but once the rockfall begins, get out."

Belzar, for once, didn't have anything to say.  He was impressed.

Klaatu spoke once more.  "We will also leave, also leave now.  I have seen enough, enough of the wars of men."  He pulled off his goggles and looked up at the Summoner with a piercing gaze.  Belzar was startled to see that Klaatu's eyes were not natural, but had been replaced with some sort of jeweled glass. 

"But we will be back to collect on your promise, Belzar, your promise."
"Stop thinking, and Dream."  /  Selene Nightwalker

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Re: The Last War
« Reply #724 on: April 23, 2006, 04:00:42 AM »
Unlike the cold freezing, and painful sensation that normally accompanied Arthur's Healing magic, this was instead very different. Grumple felt a numbness in the center of his chest where the spear was lodged.

The lines of magic that usually healed, now instead killed. Grumples heart started to turn from red to grey. In moments, like an accellerated decay, grumples heart was a dead piece of flesh, attached in his chest by veins and arteries that no longer held life.

But as the hundreds of threads of magic poured into that intricate tapestry of magic, Grumples heart continued to beat. It continued to pump precious blood to the rest of his body. Blood flowed through his body, pumped by a dead heart that no longer held blood of it's own. A dead heart that no longer used blood, and so no longer bled, no longer sheding precious life from grumple's body. A heart fueled not by life, but by death.

As Arthur's final act, he used his power to sever the spear, leaving the head still lodged deep within Grumple's heart. A heart which now beated with the unnatural rhythm of those who should have died, but still walked the earth.

Arthur had trapped Grumple's soul inside his own heart. Grumple was now a new creation. No longer living, but not undead. Grumple was the first living undead, a paradox.

 As Grumple woke, he could percieve and act normally, but a sort of change had over-taken him. There was a numbness now. Grumple could still feel pain, but it was somehow separated from him now. His instinctive response to pain was dulled to nearly nothing. as if it did not matter. As if it was no longer important. Pain was no longer real or vivid. It was a memory.

Instead however, was something else. A hunger. No, it was more like a thirst. It was like a parched tounge. Not bone dry, like a man dying in the desert willing to sell his very soul for a drop of water, just a single cup. No. But it was there, and grumple felt it.

The spear on the other hand, was still lodged inside grumple's heart, but now, instead of sending life along the bond to Belzar, it sent unlife. It was like poison. Like sickness. Like death. His world became a nauseating sensation that resembled a combination of hyper-ventillation, and heat exaustion. It was a feeling that can only be described as wrong, and Belzar's every instinct told him that the sensation needed to go away.

Knowing not the cause, but knowing the source, he called the spear to him, only the hold the haft of the spear in his hand, his mark glowing on the bottom where none would see or notice. The connection between him and the spear would be much harder to sever without that mark, but sever it he must. Unfortunately, the link had been established through that mark, and required it to be severed.

It was now very important that he get that spear out of grumple at all costs, or it would mean his death.
"I am just a figment of my imagination" -"Loki", Illusionist Trickster