Frozen Waste IV FINIS

  • What if the Seldane were Evil?...

            • # Chron Part Four: RETURN OF THE BALANCE # # * * * * *

        While the Seldane were still searching the North Fortress, Timon and Meleager reached Tavara's Mystical Fortress, and entered. They made their way to the citadel, and Tavara let them into his private apartment. Timon reported their news, "A large Seldane warband should arrive soon to conquer you."

    Tavara nodded sadly, and walking over to his throne, lifted the Water Orb from it. He looked at it sadly, "I suppose you have extra kesh with you?" Timon nodded even though Tavara was not looking, they both knew the answer already.

    Tavara's Mystical Fortress was designed specifically to keep unwanted Elementals from interfering with his business, but even so it only took the Seldane a few minutes to find a way in. The battle was brief, but ugly. Not even Meleager could withstand them long on a physical basis, though he did manage to defeat one of them before he was hurled into the frozen moat. Timon managed to dispatch another, (they knew not the principle which guides a whip,) before they cast Terrorization on him. Tavara succeeded at killing two before the Water Orb was wrested from his grasp.

    Time seemed to slow as Tavara fell to his knees, and was violently kicked into the wall. The Seldane lifted the Orb triumphantly. Tavara's feet turned to stone, then it worked its way up his legs. Timon was gone, no kesh was nearby to stop the process. Only one option remained to avoid that fate; he reached out.... A moment later Tavara slumped back, like a macabre candle holder, the stone was gone from him, and the light of a flame filled the room.

    A moment later, the earth shook like an explosion, and the Orb went sailing out of the Seldane's hands. They all dove for it, but they had forgotten something; a whip snaked out, as if from nowhere, and Timon hurled the Orb far up into the air.

    Jehezekel caught it with the last wand, and wielded all four Wands in one hand, and his machete in the other. The Seldane fled, but not before several of their number disintegrated like sandcastles. Jehezekel slowly descended, and stood beside Tavara for several minutes.

    Tavara motioned, and Jehezekel leaned down to hear what he had to say, "The... Balance... is not gasp restored... yet." For a moment he closed his eyes, and then continued, "The Sceptre will... grant... you the Power... to repeat... the ritual... with the Arch... types..." Then he was silent.

    Jehezekel looked around, wondering what Tavara could have meant. Timon spoke up, "Remember what happened when you performed your Coming of Age Ritual? I think that's what he's referring to."

    "Ah, so instead of the symbols of the Four Pillars, there should be the actual Elementals, and instead of the rod I'm supposed to hold the Sceptre. But where can I find them?"

    Timon shrugged helplessly, "Magpie would know, but he works for the LandKing, and Alaric is in the control of the Seldane."

    Jehezekel laughed, "Don't forget, we work for the LandKing too! And that has only served to spur us on!" He fidgeted with his sword for a moment, "Bahoudin is nigh."

    A moment later Magpie walked in through the wall, bearing a long package draped in black cloth. "Brings you the Sceptre, Magpie does. Find the Elemental Conference you must. Where is the Land's End? To beat the false brethren, there you must fly."

    He produced the Sceptre from the cloth, and handed it to Jehezekel. It looked like twisted wood, and on its head was a large Orb, clear as moonlight. Below the Orb, on the shaft of the Sceptre, were four small sets of claws. Jehezekel arranged the Wands in the claws, and the large Orb started glowing softly. He leapt into the air, and a moment later, he was gone.

    Magpie and Timon looked down at Tavara, "If only I'd been near with some kesh, he might still be alive." Magpie glanced up, "For the best, it is. Needs balance does Alaric." Then Tavara's flesh melted into flame, which drew into his bones. He stood up and Magpie draped a new robe over him. The lich said, "Let us wait here for the final outcome." The others nodded.

        Jehezekel picked his way carefully through the fires of Land's End. The Elemental Sceptre granted him immunity from fire, but he did not appreciate the lava coming up over his waist. But time was running short, so he made every effort to hurry. Eventually, he reached his destination: four figures sat together in the depths of the volcano.

    One of them, apparently Undine, rose to greet him, "Welcome, Balancer. We have been waiting." Then she presented him with a well-worked scabbard for his weapon.

    Jehezekel bowed slightly, "Thank-you Lady, you are most gracious."

    "We have no time for ceremony!" interjected Jhiaxus, "The ceremony must begin!"

    The Air Elemental responded, "He needs introductions at any rate." He motioned toward Jhiaxus, "Jhiaxus you know already, with him is his lady Jinrai. Ignae," he indicated the Fire Elemental, "performed the ceremony for them. I am UrSylph, the free wind is my Element."

    The Elementals withdrew to their own proper corners of an imaginary ceremonial square, Jehezekel stepped to the middle, and the ceremony began.

    Jehezekel started chanting:

    Leaping Fire, Flowing Water, Blowing Wind, but Earth alone is Solid.

    Jehezekel pointed the Elemental Sceptre toward Jhiaxus, and he removed the Earth Wand from its mount.

    Refreshing Water, Cooling Wind, Receptive Earth, but Fire alone is Heat.

    Jehezekel pointed the Sceptre toward Ignae, and he removed the Fire Wand from its setting.

    Drying Wind, Absorptive Earth, Steaming Fire, but Water alone is Wetness.

    Jehezekel pointed the Sceptre toward Jinrai, and she removed the Water Wand from the Sceptre.

    Unmoving Earth, Fuel-bound Fire, Bed-bound Water, but Wind alone is Free.

    Jehezekel pointed the Sceptre toward UrSylph, and he removed the Wind Wand from its support.

    Bones of Earth, Jhiaxus replaced the Earth Wand

    Flesh on Fire, Ignae replaced the Fire Wand

    Blood is Water, Jinrai replaced the Water Wand

    Breath a Wind. UrSylph replaced the Wind Wand

    That is Man. Jehezekel whirled the Elemental Sceptre around his head.

    Upset the balance, and we sicken.

    He could feel all Cythera tipping toward destruction, he was standing at the cross roads. Could he rescue Cythera, or would it collapse? Suddenly, hordes of Seldane emerged from the walls, Sabinate at their head.

    Destroy the balance, and -we die.

    Sabinate pinned him and grabbed for the Elemental Sceptre...

    Restore the Balance,...

    Jehezekel summoned the power of the Elements, and stood up, choking, through a large pile of dust. He looked around and saw all of Cythera, spread out like a map beneath him, and it was tormented by great cataclysms. He looked down at the icy crystals and they evaporated. Beneath his oversight the mineral flats sank into the sea, and water lapped once more, liquid, against the ancient beaches. The stoned mages were cured, along with the LandKing. In short, everything was restored to its proper place, or to put it like Jehezekel finished the chant:

    And Life Returns!!!

    Jehezekel looked around, he was standing in a luminescent room, and beside him a light glowed softly. A voice proceeded from the light, "Well done, Jehezekel the Balancer, you have completed the quest. The Elementals are once more pursuing the good of Cythera, acting in harmony and not seeking an advantage. But you are left with a dreadful choice: will you seek to live once more with the people of Cythera, who will remember your power, and fear you? Will you live in honor with the Elementals, and die in peace? Or will you pursue the adventure that comes to you, and perhaps leave everything you have known far behind? I, Kronos, grant to you the decision. Choose wisely."

    "I do not desire to be set upon high, neither for dread nor for honor. I wish to live. To have friends, and be accepted as a peer." He was back in the Land's End. Jinrai smiled at him, "We will see what we can do." The other Elementals nodded in agreement.

            • # Epilogue # # * * * * *

    The Celebration of Renewal was in full swing, streamers and garlands hung from every wall, fabulously costumed figures roamed the streets at will, sundry kiosks crowded the streets, to the west of Dares' Eatery a small carnival was setup, polyps were having a heyday stealing unwatched picnic baskets, and a scylla was on lifeguard duty out in the bay.

    A small nondescript group gathered at the base of the little mesa by the seashore. "Is everything arranged?" Jehezekel anxiously asked the young couple beside him.

    "For the eleventh time, yes, everything is ready. Alaric should be here any minute now."

    "Be patient with the boy, Jhiaxus. He can't be expected to have the surety of a rock, he has a chaotic side to distract him. OH LOOK! Cotton candy! Get me some, please Jhiaxus, Please?" Ignae and UrSylph laughed together as the couple chased down a passing candy cart.

    A cloaked figure crossed over from Byraxis's house. "Alaric will arrive in one minute, is everybody ready?"

    "No, Tavara." replied Jehezekel, "Our stable Elemental just went running after a candy cart." Tavara gave the impression of incredulity, and Ignae explained: "Jinrai wanted some cotton candy. How could he refuse?"

    Just then UrSylph reappeared, "They'll show up at about the time Alaric does. Let's get up there."

    Moments later they were at the top of the mesa. Hector, Timon, and Meleager were waiting for them. Alaric appeared, a moment later Jhiaxus and Jinrai popped up, followed by Magpie.

    On top of the mesa was a familiar square. Except that in the middle was the mages triangle, and on two of the triangle's corners sat thrones. The crowd hushed as they found their places. First the Elementals, (ostensibly actors representing the various elements), went to their corners of the square. Then Alaric and Tavara sat on the thrones, and the people thought it a wondrous representation of the Balance. Next, Hector stood beside Alaric, and Meleager beside Tavara, (he was now Tavara's Captain of the Guard). Then Jehezekel motioned Magpie onto the last corner of the triangle.

    Timon made a long flowery speech about how thankful they all were to Jehezekel for restoring the balance. He sat down on the edge of the mesa, and Jehezekel gave a short little speech praising Timon and saying that without him the balance would never have had a chance. Then he turned and presented Tavara and Alaric as co-rulers of Cythera, and Magpie as their chief advisor. The speech was really a masterpiece, produced in part by everyone on the mesa, and in the end all the people were quite pleased with everything.

    Jehezekel raised the Elemental Sceptre, and a wave of fear swept through the crowd. "I am not a fit guardian of this artifact. I am yet young, and lack the dedication to guard such a dread burden." The people relaxed a little, "But, I ask, who should the guardian be? I could give it to one of these Elementals, but that would serve only to disrupt our renewed Balance. Or I could grant its keeping to Alaric or Tavara, but that too would ruin their harmony as co-rulers. That leaves only Timon," (Timon disclaimed any desire for that responsibility), "and Magpie that you see with me up here. Timon has refused it, and if I gave it to Magpie he would be the Overlord rather than the advisor to your rulers."

    Jehezekel squared his shoulders and continued, "Therefore, by the power invested in me as the Bearer of the Elemental Sceptre and Balancer of Cythera, I grant the Keeping of the Sceptre to: TIME " He presented the Sceptre, and it vanished.

    When the uproar subsided, only Timon was still on the mesa. When he had the crowds attention, Timon explained that while they were not watching Jehezekel had gone through a temporary portal, and into another world to help it too achieve a proper balance. Then he ended with, "Thanks to Jehezekel, we are holding this Celebration of Renewal today! So let's Celebrate! "

    That evening, Pelops and Alcmena sat at a table in the Two-Tailed Rat, "Pelops? We don't have any children again."

    "I know dear. But the mage said your time is past." smack Alcmena slapped Pelops for being stupid.

    "There are a lot of orphans in this city. I was thinking we could foster parent some of them. Like we did for Jehezekel."

    Pelops rubbed the side of his head, "Sounds like an excellent idea dear. A toast?" clink

    Jehezekel passed quietly through the streets of Cademia until he came to a building which he did not recognize, above the door swung a sign with two words: Alraeican Tavern. He entered.

    Part 1
    Part 2
    Part 3
    Part 4

    This post has been edited by Jehezekel : 14 January 2007 - 09:03 PM

  • Nice job on your chron, Jehezekel, and congratulations on the completion of your first chron. You did a very good job on keeping Cytheran elements but altering them to create a different Cythera. The inclusion of Kronos was a nice touch, by the way.

    Out of curiosity, how did Meleagar survive being thrown into the moat?

  • The only reason he failed in ninja-school was a pathogenic lack of stealth. 'nuff said?

  • Nice work! I love Timon and his whip. Now I have to write a chron. I just don't have any ideas...

  • Thanks!
    Go for it! The ideas will come.

  • @selax_bot, on Jan 5 2007, 02:58 PM, said in Frozen Waste IV FINIS:

    The inclusion of Kronos was a nice touch, by the way.

    Indeed, yes. For obvious reasons, I found that particularly gratifying. :D Well, done, Jehezekel, a very good chronicle.

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