Once again...

  • As people seem to be a little more interested, yet another carry-on story will be created. I'll kick it off...

    Throughout the land of Cythera, the most notorious bandit was Talos. With his sword of heroes, cloak of heracles, and mystical knowledge, many thought that he would be the savior of Cythera. But they were wrong...

    <font color="gold">Bronze: the other gold metal.</font>

  • The once mighty Talos, one of the few who cured King Alaric, was once a mighty hero. He had wealth, power, and everything. Unfortunately, greed turned him over and he wanted more and more.

    Like the thief he once was, he set off. But this time, he slaughtered whole villages and plundered their goods. With his few, but well-trained, henchmen, he caused a darkness to once again settle across the land. It was during this time, of all times, that the landking Alaric had finally passed away. Dying from natural causes, he lived his happy years ruling over the people. Yet another time of chaos had sprung.

    And like all times of chaos, heroes were born in the midst of it. This time though, the unknowing heroes had no idea what they were about to be plunged into...

    (This message has been edited by Tyrael (edited 09-22-2000).)

    (This message has been edited by Avatara (edited 11-02-2000).)

  • Talos's bandits helped him capture the cities of Catamarca, Odemia, and Kosha. Cademia was going fast, and a mysterious person had murdered the judge. The residents of Odemia had been massacred, their bones filling the broken front gate. The fortress of Tavara had been captured, and Talos was using it as his base of operations. The undead sprining up had been turned to help Talos with the help of a captured mage (now deceased). The "Lost City" of Tavara was recolonized secretly, with the hope of building a new army capable of capturing Pnyx.

    Many people tried to revolt against Talos's reign of terror, but all attempts were in vain. Many wondered how a person who had been great enough to cure Alaric could have become so evil. To some, it was obvious: the corruption of the Crolna had not been defeated. It would also explain Alaric's death, as the corruption germinated inside him until he could not stand it - it was a well covered-up suicide. Magpie was nowhere to be seen.

    <font color="gold">Bronze: the other gold metal.</font>

  • The mages of Pynx, after noting the defeat and deaths of even some of their best students, closed the city in, barracading every door and holing themselves up inside.

    The flood of fighters to challenge Talos's minions were dwindling as whole cities were being destroyed. The LangKing hall was recieving refugees each day as towns were conquered. Finally, the flood of refugees stopped meaning bad news for the citizen's in LandKing hall. The people begged the guards to seal off the hall from the outside, and the hall too was sealed.

    Now, with only two fortified cities left, Talos began making plans. Should he wipe out the mages of Pynx, which could pose the only formidable threat in Cythera, or should he go for the LandKing hall and show the mages how far he was willing to go...


  • Meanwhile, a once loyal knight to King Alaric, having served as his bodyguard for the last few years, Trundaylan began his investigation. It was claimed, and proven by the mages of Pynx themselves that King Alaric had died of natural causes. Trundaylan didn't buy that one bit.

    He, and eleven other loyal knights, started with the long search in Alaric's quarters....


  • Trundaylan sifts through the shackles of Alaric's quarters. Abruptly, one of his guards called out. Trundaylan walked over to see what was wrong. The guard showed him the crack of what was obviously a secret door.

    "Stand back!" Trundaylan shouts as he kicks open the door. Splinters fly everywhere as a dark room is viewed beyond.

    Trundaylan and his knights walk through...


    (This message has been edited by Trundaylan (edited 09-22-2000).)

    (This message has been edited by Avatara (edited 11-02-2000).)

  • Talos, realizing the danger of discovering the secret of Alaric, decided to send his demonic and undead minions to LandKing Hall. He would lead an attack on Pnyx, and hopefully ruin the power of the mages once and for all.

    <font color="gold">Bronze: the other gold metal.</font>

  • *Trundaylan gapes in awe at the sights that lay behind the now smashed drawer. He had found Alaric's private study. On the desk was a book, with some loose pages and corners burnt.

    Trundaylan walks over and picks up the book. He flips through it in astonishment while the rest of the paladins walk around the room, examining other items with awe. He realizes, after looking at the first couple of pages, that the book is Alaric's private journal.

    The journal has details of Alaric's entire life. Flipping to the end, Trundaylan notes with dismay that half the paper is burned. He reads what he can of the page, describing the night before Alaric died. As he starts to read the final paragraph, a sudden yelp from one of his guards causes him to close the book and walk over.

    Trundaylan finds himself on a balcony, overlooking an etheral void. Minutes pass while Trundaylan stares out at the void with his paladins.

    As he turns and starts to walk back to the light, a sudden shaking rumbles through LandKing hall. The paladin chief trips and falls, scattering the many pages in the loose journal everywhere. The candles fall over and ignite the floor and walls of the study on fire.

    Paladins rush over to help pick up papers of the journal before they are incinerated, but over half are lost. Another shaking occurs, dropping some loose beams and rock from the ceiling down. Trundaylan calls his paladins to him, after saving everything they could, and dashes out of the room, just as the doorway collapses and the study is sealed under several tons of rock.

    The twelve paladins gather together what papers they managed to save, and Trundaylan puts them in a safe place. They then run to the front of LandKing hall to see what is going on.*

    "What is going on?" Trundaylan yells to the captain of the guard as another rumbling is heard.

    "Its finally happened. Talos is attacking..."


  • *The twelve paladins rush over to see what was transpiring. Guards were fighting outside, slowly retreating back to LandKing hall while archers were positioning themselves so they had a clear shot at the doorway. The paladins took up a position next to the doorway into the hall (opposite side).

    Suddenly, the guards on the outside broke and ran inside, filling those that could suddenly see their enemies with despair. There must have been hundreds of undead and dozens of demons. The undead were not a problem, but demons, in that amount?

    As the archers prepared to fire, Trundaylan grabbed a torch and lit all of the arrows on fire, just before they were released. The arrows were aimed high enough that the forests outside of LandKing hill were set ablaze. The huge fire did nothing to the demons, but started to literally melt the bones and weapons of the undead.

    Yet still, the forces of Talos kept marching, and before long, they had reached the doorway. Arrows were sent at the enemy continuously, only to clatter off the bones of the undead, or make a demon scratch himself. One traveller had a crossbow, which seemed to be effective against the undead.

    Suddenly, the undead were upon them, and the paladins and guards found themselves fighting for their life...*


  • The expidition to Pnyx, led by Talos, was approaching its destination. The many mages and wizards knew of the danger, however, and had been preparing for it for the last three days. They gathered up the remaining few from the countryside and equipped them with powerful magic shields, swords, and armor. Meanwhile, the many students trained in powerful damaging magic spells. Unfortunately for them, corruption and a good deal of poison had managed to kill off many of the master mages. At the dusk of the third day after warning, hundreds of marching feet were heard off in the distance. Talos was going to attack at night.

    <font color="gold">Bronze: the other gold metal.</font>

  • "It is time."
    theKestrel lookes up from his musings. He was in what was obviously a study of some sort. There were books lining the walls and a number of sealed and locked chests, not merely mage locked, but with locks made to open only for those who knew how. Those who knew how currently numbered one, himself. The man who had spoken was standing in the doorway. He was tall, lean, but well muscled. At his side hung a sword which contained the stuff of legend. He held himself well in the well made jerkin of ring-mail about his chest. He was outlined in an eerie glow, as beyond him was the fires of a sort not made by humans. For they were in a the place called Land's End. An appropriate name, I reflected. In contrast to the man in the doorway, I only wore only a leather jerkin with no cap. In front of me lay a sword that had indeed served me well through the years. I buckled it on, seeing the sinous windings of the dragon, which started at it's silver hilt and continued to the point. The sword's name was Belenov. I stood, pausing before I exited only to take a small book, and my travel pack. I took my cloak off the door peg as I passed and put it on over my loose-fitting shirt. I wore pants of a good cut, made for me.

    The man in the doorway, the man whom I could not do without, the man who had stood at my side in countless conflicts and never failed me, the man who's name was Barak, spoke again, "They are ready." "That is good," I replied, "for we have to move quickly if we are to be of good use." "Where do we move to?" asked Barak.
    "LandKing Hall."

    And so the problem remained; lots of people were mean, and most of them were miserable, even the ones with digital watches. Many were increasingly of the opinion that they had all made a big mistake in coming down from the trees in the first place. And some said that the trees had been a bad move and that no one should ever have left the oceans.

  • JackFrost, the mightiest mage left, quickly set about setting up the final defences of the city. Surrounding Pynx were the warriors with magical armor and weapons. Those mages skilled at long distance offensive spells clustered on the roof, and the clerics prepared for the coming rush of wounded. Many thoughts were of running; who could win against this force? But there could be no surrender, there was no where to run...

  • The vertical slash of light looked like a white-hot bar of iron, it grew in height until it was the height of two men, it then grew wide enough for three horses to pass abreast of each other. Two mounted men rode out of the light. One had on simple leather armor about his chest. The other had ring mail on with a full helm. The helm was in the shape of a screaming dragon's head. Both men wore swords, the fully armored one's was at his side, the other had his sword strapped on his back.

    I rode out of the portal and looked at the surrounding wood to determine my exact whereabouts. I gathered them and turned back to the portal, I whistled once and turned, feeling Belenov dig into my back. As I galloped off and headed toward LangKing Hall, the portal closed. The thundering of three score mounted men followed me.

    I peered down the rise, where LandKing Hall sat. It was embattled. I could see that they had forced open the first gate, and were now battling with the void on either side of them upon the narrow walkway. I turned to the men behind me, Barak at my side. The sea of faces that turned towards me were rough, scarred, but full of strength and duty. They were trained, battle-hardened, the best. Nothing could scare them, nothing could make them flee, there was a job to do and they were going to do it. Barak's subordinate Rio came forward, "All ready, my lord." I smiled then, for now was the time, no more waiting. Rio smiled back and rode into formation. They were ready. The hell below could not stop them. Their blades had been tempered to the extent of the skills of the mage Eioneus, who had only grown in abilities since Alaric's time. Their shields were magically enhanced and strengthened. I myself had prepared their rings, which would keep them free of any magical spells which sought to affect their minds. Their armor was of the best quality. <what the hell is the name of the blacksmith in Odemia? tell me> had sworn an oath of revenge for the murder of his family by Talos. He had immersed himself, handcrafting each type of armor worn by these men, carefully going over every detail, there were no flaws. Their helms were of the best. No flaws existed in their crafting, either. I looked to the men, "Let us free the people of LandKing Hall."
    The roar accompanying this statement was lost in the pounding of my steed's hooves.

    Cut, slash, block, stab. My opponent fell to the earth, his abdomen spilling out his life. I looked around. The battle was going well. We had been upon them before they had seen us. The fear in their eyes shown as our lines clashed into their backs. Undead fell as chaff. Men were nothing. As they realized us and we experienced more difficulty as they became aware of us, demons came to the front. I only had time to see that Rio was moving forward to engage one, before I had to block a swing. The demon came on, laughing. I smiled back, spoke a word and the air around me dimmed and there was a shock as the demon fell dead.

    The remaining bodies were being hauled away. As we had distracted the portions of Talos' army that were not attacking the keep, the group of paladins which had been battling desperately along the walk had taken heart and regained the ground they had lost, throwing the demons and undead into the void. They had then poured out of the keep, hitting the side of the Talos' army, which had been turned towards us. We had cut them into pieces.
    Barak came towards me. "What kind of losses did we take?" I asked. "Not bad, I got a bit of a cut along my arm, but nothing that won't heal. Rio sustained only a couple of scratches. Ross, Davies, Matt, and Chuck have taken some bad wounds, but they are being tended to and should make it."
    "How many did we lose?" I asked, grimacing, I hated this part.
    "Well, I can't be sure, but preliminary reports indicate at least 14, possibly 18."
    "Where are the four unaccounted for?"
    "We had thought them lost, but some said they saw them disengage, and head for some men and a couple of Undead that were running."
    "Good, no mercy."
    The Paladin captain was approaching, gratefulness written across his face.
    "Hello, captain. I see we made it in time."

    And so the problem remained; lots of people were mean, and most of them were miserable, even the ones with digital watches. Many were increasingly of the opinion that they had all made a big mistake in coming down from the trees in the first place. And some said that the trees had been a bad move and that no one should ever have left the oceans.

  • *In the midst of the chaos of battle, Trundaylan caught a shining figure on a nearby hill, who seemed to radiate life. Could it be? The legendary Tyrael, here? As the figures charged down the hill, Trundaylan saw that is was not Tyrael, but someone else. All the better, who knows which side Tyrael will fight for, if he fights, but at least this person is on our side.

    The charging fighters completely took the opposing army off guard. Chaos was still supreme, but now in the enemy force. Trundaylan used this distraction to charge forward, sheating his sword, and throw all his weight against a nearby demon. He winced at the sudden searing pain that bit through him, but happily noted that the demon fell into the etheral void, shouting what was probably a sting of curses.

    The forces of LandKing hall quickly beat back the opposing force. After the battle was over, Trundaylan walked up to the leader of the knights that had mysteriously appeared.*

    "Greetings, I'm Trundaylan. Good thing you showed up when you did. If you hadn't, we still probably would have won, but LandKing hall would have been wrecked beyond repair. Your help was appreciated." *Trundaylan noticed the scratches and cuts on some of theKestrel's men. "Do you need a healer? We paladins are well trained in the art of healing also." *In response to his statement, he closed his eyes for a brief few seconds. When they opened, they shined with a dark blue light.

    Trundaylan quickly raised his hands, clasped together, and instantly dropped them down to his knees. A blue sparkle, about the size of a man's fist, shot out and enveloped theKestrel. After a brief couple of seconds, theKestrel glowed a bright white light while energy flowed around him. As quickly as the glow appeared, it faded, leaving behind a completely healed man.

    "How's that for effectiveness? :) "


  • As the shinning sun dipped into the sky, and dusk shadowed the world, Talos' army attacked. At first, the evil forces broke like a wave around the surrounded island, but the mages were quickly running low on power, and exhastion slowed the warriors. Jack, after launching a ball of acid down among a group of demons, leaving his mind momentarily empty of power, wondered...

    "How long can we last? Will all our efforts be squished by supperior numbers? Or might help arrive? If so, they must hurry, for soon nothing will be left of Pynx but a pile of rubble."

    Just then, a dagger flew though the darkness, and Jack fell, the cursed weapon sticking from his side.

  • I looked toward the west, at the setting sun, I feared that perhaps I would be spelling doom for those embattled in Pnyx, if I did not go to their aid immediately. I could not, however, for I never leave my men behind. Of the four who had followed the scattered few of Talos' army into the woods, only one had returned. He had come just as the shadows began to grow long in the valley, unhorsed and cursing.

    "S'bloody demons came out of nowhere. Something straight from the depths of hell, leadin' 'em, sir. He was cloaked comple'ly in black, with his cowl pulled about 'is face. To look into them shadows where his face must lay, was terror itself." He had gone on to describe how they had been cleaning up those few who had fled from the battle and were suddenly beset by what, "was clearly some sort of elite guard", and were instantly on the defensive, but were no match for the seven, by his count, demons and the thing which had inspired such terror. They had fought like demons themselves, but were captured, "Tha' thing ordered 'em to take us alive." He had broken free and galloped as fast as his horse could take. It had stumbled in a rabbit hole and broken it's leg as he approached camp, which threw him. He had made his way into camp in spite of his grievous wounds. He had a long slash down his front, a very nasty slice from his elbow to shoulder, which he had bound, and minor cuts along his stomach. The captain of the paladins, Trundaylan, had taken care of him and sent him to his tent to rest.

    This new turn of events worried me greatly. Who was this black cloaked thing? What business did he have in the wood's about LandKing Hall? He could not be Talos, for I had known Talos in better times. I wondered whether this new force was allied with Talos. The man had described his attacker's as demons, but said they were, "different, somehow."

    I sighed. Pnyx had to be abandoned to its fate, I had to save my men from whoever this thing was. I felt my stomach lurch, thinking of the straits the brave mages in Pnyx were in. I now had 44 men under my command, including Barak. Barak! That was it, I had to send Barak and most of my men to help Pnyx. No, I didn't have enough men though, I had to ask Trundaylan for manpower. I needed Rio and five other of my men, if I were to have a chance of getting the three kidnapped back. Another cause of thought, what was it that the black cloaked one had wanted them for? I could only hope that it was for information on who I was and where I had come from. We had need of haste though, so I walked down into our encampment from the ridge I had been on.

    The fires in camp twinkled, and the sentry greeted me as I passed. Rio waved as he headed into his tent, but I called him to stop, "Rio, I need you to find Trundaylan, the Paladin captain, and have him come to my tent."

    "Sure, Kest, I'll have him there in a second." I headed off to my tent, hoping that Trundaylan could provide me with enough troops to bolster Barak's Pnyx force to at least fifty men. I wondered whether or not the Paladin had the dozen and one I needed. I also wondered whether the Paladin captain could provide me with my other request......

    And so the problem remained; lots of people were mean, and most of them were miserable, even the ones with digital watches. Many were increasingly of the opinion that they had all made a big mistake in coming down from the trees in the first place. And some said that the trees had been a bad move and that no one should ever have left the oceans.

    (This message has been edited by Avatara (edited 11-02-2000).)

  • In the darkness, a thouroughly exhausted Trundaylan made his way to kestrel.

    "You needed me?" he asked in a weary voice.

    "Yes, I have some favors to ask of you..."


  • *A hidden figure silently watched the battle for Pynx. He quickly saw the mages would be overrun in a matter of hours. After sighing he decided that he would fight.

    He actually liked Talos's idea, the island was in bad need of a ruler right now, but he didn't approve of the methods Talos used. Slaughtering the peaceful town of Kosha and literally wiping it off the map was going a bit too far.

    He shifted his weight and watched the battle. Talos was sure to pay dearly for Kosha today.

    Yes, the mysterious Tyrael would fight today...just not yet...*


  • Talos was very angry when he heard of his defeat at LandKing Hall. Of the hundreds sent, only 12 undead and 7 demons returned. Although a "clean-up" party had been sent, and many had been killed by it, they seemed to have mysteriously disappeared. At Pnyx, things were going extremely well. A few hours ago, they had burst through the gate and took the lower floor. The basement supplied them with a few demons, and Talos estimated that the upper floor and libraries would be taken in a matter of hours. The head mage had been killed, along with over 20 students when they captured the lower floor.

    However, he was extremely worried about his ability to hold Pnyx. Much of the defense force his plan depended on had been killed at LandKing hall. Also, much of Alaric's diary remained. Its dark secret needed desperately to be destroyed. The other thing that was bothering him were the senses of an extreme good and evil having occupied the land. Talos knew he was cruel, but some of his old self existed: he was doing it for the good of Cythera. The conquering of Pnyx was neccessary. If good and evil played in the war, chaos would be the only result, no matter what the intentions were.

    <font color="gold">Bronze: the other gold metal.</font>

  • *After deciding that enough of a fight had gone on, and the mages of Pynx were on the brink of death, Tyrael calmly walked down the mountain, slipping behind the ranks of Talos.

    Tyrael lifted his hands (clasped) together in the air and waited. A blue aura surrounded Tyrael, but still he went un-noticed. As the last mage fell to the ground (in exhaustion, they aren't all dead, just tired) the ranks of Talos's army let out a giant victory cry. No sooner had that cry been heard, when brilliant, bright yellow flashes of lightning rained down from the sky, each bolt seeming to ***** itself in the beast of an enemy.

    Talos's army cried out in terror, and many fell dead. Before the lightning abated however, giant icicles fell from the sky, shattering death on groups of two or three people at a time. Brilliantly glowing blue, Tyrael lowered his hands slightly. The remaining half of Talos's army (still being hit by lightning and ice) was suddenly scattered again as huge pillars of flame shot up from the ground, literally tearing rock up with it.

    Tyrael finally brought his hands down and loose rocks from all over came to rest in front of him. The rocks slowly melded together and formed a giant wave of rock. By this time, Tyrael was noticed and many were moving toward him. With a final spell, the wave of rock slammed into the enemy, leaving the others behind to succumb to the shockwave that followed closely behind. Even after all this, Talos still had a fourth of his army alive.

    (to give you an idea of the intensity of the death and destruction, everything above in this post took place in a matter of 12 seconds (not counting the time it took to walk down))

    As Talos's army braced themselves for another attack, Tyrael smiled. The smile was quickly turned to an expression of horror as a sword suddenly protuded out of his chest. Wrapped up in concentrating on his spells, Tyrael had not even noticed him.

    Talos himself had arrived...


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