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Thread: Disturbing News

  1. #61

    Default Re: Disturbing News

    Battles Part 27


    Interlude Part 12


    Inside Doom


    The Gifted Mordel and Malicore appeared over the pad in Doom, hovering after the use of a random group teleport by Malicore from the ancient Grand Hall in Dralk. Mordel knocked Malicore off his back. Mordel was in a wrath and Malicore was dodging his swiping claws while running around his feet with great agility.

    “You took away my glory of battle Ssilk. I could have fought the entire race of Dragons alone! What did you do? You snatched me from battle and made us appear to be running away like bipeds or cowardly Helians!” Mordel roared.

    “Quit acting like a hatchling Mordel. You are an ancient so think like one!” retorted Malicore, “Lilith kept her word and made us the most sought after pair in all the Dragon lands. Let them stew in their frothy hatred and get really worked up! We got business here on the back side of Doom methinks.”

    “Did you bring us here purposely Malicore?” snapping at him with his great jaws.

    “No, I did not Mordel. I just used the only group teleport I had. Remember, oh ancient forgetful one, how you admonished me several years ago about wasting good gold on trivial matters like teleport scrolls? So I picked one up in a disreputable second hand shop out of Aughundell, in a discounted clearance sale for one silver in the lower side where the thieves hang out. But, it was a random teleport and thus the discount. So don't get grumpy about following your instructions. In the meanwhile we got business here.”

    Continuing to swipe at him Mordel thundered, “By whose authority Naka?”

    “By Istaria's and Kaasha's authority so help me Kaasha! But, if you keep this up then I will lose my temper and we will lose our fame garnered in the sky! I will kill you with my special arrow and you will materialize on the pad in Dralk. I imagine the dragons will line up and kill you one at a time for at least five thousand times. One kill per dragon before you fully are fully materialized and able to fight. You my ancient friend will then be known as Mordel of the Five Thousand Deaths, the laughing stock of Dralk till the end of days. I will die over and over on the receiving pad in Aughundell, since the last time I heard about anything over there, the whole place was being over run.”

    The idea of five thousand ignominious deaths caught the ancient's attention very quickly. Suddenly Mordel was very calmly appraising Malicore's thinking, “There was after all no doubt about Malicore's efficacious ill conceived death arrow project, according to Lilith. To give up any Glory in the quota he had garnered was an anathema of a thought. He squinted suspiciously at Malicore saying, “So just what did your God tell you little Naka?”

    “While we were teleporting Kaasha told me 'Into Doom will Istaria send you both. Another will have further instructions. Delve deeply therefore my Gifted child. Therein you will see a secret that which has never been seen by mortals before and kept secret by the Dryads.' That was all I was told. You know how cryptic the Gods are.” Malicare said shrugging.

    “Now are we finished threatening each other Mordel??”

    After stamping one taloned paw on the flooring Mordel snorted with smoke coming out of his nostrils returned rather waspishly, “Hrumphh!! Very well. Did that snake God of yours assure you of a battle coming? Will there be blood and glory in it for us with many enemies?”

    “Truthfully Mordel I am not sure. Kaasha seemed uneasy and envious all at once. Be that as it may, we must move quickly. Time is of the essence and something is very wrong here. I can smell it in the air. I will scout ahead.”

    Mordel thought to himself, “What would a God be afraid of? This just might turn out to be interesting. Secrets could bring great horde wealth and power.” He eyed Malicore walking quickly in front and followed with nary a complaint.

    Without further discussion both went around the bend then stopped at the intersection. The stench of decaying flesh was nearly overpowering. The usual inhabitants in this area were gone. Scattered small piles of Myloc warrior corpses filled the areas. Taking a left Malicore went to the first cul-de-sac. The other monsters were also dead with numerous Myloc warriors. Going back to the intersection he found that Mordel was gone. Going further down he went under the rock overhang. Mordel was standing on the small elevation. Hundreds of Myloc warriors littered the floor. Scattered Dwarven weapons lay amongst the piles but no Dwarves were in sight.

    “What do you think Mordel? It is the same down the other way?. Dead creatures, dead Mylocs and scattered Dwarven weapons drenched in Myloc blood?”

    “Malicore, these were battles of vengeance or dominance, so I believe. I sense much the same further in. One thing I am sure of. The stench of WA power is completely and absolutely gone. This could be a far more dangerous puzzle. I will lead now,” harrumphed Mordel.

    Malicore followed without a word thinking to himself, “The ancient Gifted Dragon had his good points even though he was a prickly picky ole fart. He was composed now and a bit of leadership in their duo would go far to assuage his perceived loss of Dragon face by leaving Dralk in the manner they had to.”

    The scene was the same in all the tunnels and side branches up to the stone arch over now empty pool of former glowing green goo. The creatures in the emptied pool were dead with scattered Mylocs bodies around the corpses. Mordel suddenly stopped just past the stone archway.

    Malicore came around, “What is wrong ancient one?”

    With a talon Mordel moved a slimy body away from the pile of rotting flesh.

    “This Myloc is not the same. This one is different. We have not seen his ilk till now. The color of his flesh and its smell reeks of power unlike all the others we have killed before now. This one carried authority as a warrior unlike the other drones. You will also note that the WA associated smells of the typical Myloc is not on this one at all. This puzzle is becoming clear to me now. We must go to the area of the Dwarven King's last stand and burial site.

    Once again the same was seen. Many more of the strange Myloc warriors were noted in the piles of heaped dead. The dead numbered far too many to count.

    Pointing Malicore spoke with conviction, “Well Mordel there is only one direction to go and that is down the steep incline towards the caverns of the Myloc Queen.”

    Malicore quickly turned around and headed to the opening. With a single step on the incline bright light flashed in his eyes. Unable to see he jumped to his left with his bow out and two arrows notched. Mordel slowly followed hearing Malicore's sudden warning. He stepped into the bright lights with his spells and breath of fire ready then looked almost shocked seeing the scene below him.

    “Well the Gifted aerial duo has finally arrived ready to go forth into battle! You are late Gifted Ones. This is not the time to go sight seeing. Telak already left after he accomplished what he wished. #1 and I needed you both a half hour ago to do your part in this repair then leave via the portal,” said the glowering and glowing little Gnome. Pud cursed quietly muttering in ancient Gnomish technospeak not realizing Mordel's ancient ears could hear him quite clearly. The Gnome headed to the dust covered moldy Portal which had been partially dismantled.

    Mordel followed first. Malicore stayed atop the slope sticking his head in and out of the illusionary barrier that only showed an empty interior around the teleport. Pud Blowfuse looked up seeing Malicore dally about.

    Exasperated he addressed Mordel, “Can you please get your friend down here. My time here is limited and this must be done. I should have already been in Old Rachival with Telak. Kaasha is going to be very angry since it was he that recommended both of you to bear witness for the Gifted of Istaria and his children.”

    Mordel bellowed for Malicore to come down. Malicore huffed and puffed, all put out that he was not able to investigate further.

    “But I could not sense the magic Mordel!! We need that spell. We could use it in aerial combat!”

    Pud huffed, “Never happen Sslik. A magical device is creating that. Telak does not share with those who do not honor him. He does not play well with others.”

    Ignoring Malicore, Pud addressed Mordel, “Come Mordel you need to separate the back half of this teleport from the front half.”

    Mordel followed the instructions with care. Pud turned and addressed a smaller than average automaton, which had been standing still throughout the discussion. Suddenly it dissembled to several dozen very tiny automatons which crawled into the intricate circuitry disappearing within the depths of the device. Pud motioned to Mordel, the huge Gifted Dragon, to pick up the top of the standing area and lay it down to the side. Dozens of darkened cracked crystals could be seen, connected by strange silvery strands throughout.

    Without looking up from peering into the circuitry Pud held out his hand addressing Malicore, “Please give me two of those Dragon Crystal you have. It does not really matter what kind they are just two of them. Telak was very specific.”

    “No! Not till you give me some answers. You are not the Leader here. You decide nothing for us Gifted.” Malicore snapped.

    Still not looking up Pud made the request politely again holding out his hand, “Actually I am the leader for these few moments and you will follow my instructions. Kaasha told you 'into Doom will Istaria send you both. Another will have further instructions.' to be precise. You did the teleport, Istaria used it to send you both here and I am the one giving the further instructions.”

    Pud stood up giving Malicore a flat hard stare continuing, “Just so both of you know, I don't like toasted Gnome on a stick jokes and barbarians traipsing out of the jungle. I told Telak this was a big mistake, but he is my Boss. Kaasha is finally getting in the game now. It was your crystals he specified to Telak. There is an agreement between a new ancient Goddess an old Goddess and two Gods with one of them being the most ancient of all. Telak is leading because unlike the Gifted and the other Gods he will no longer be reactive to the high and mighty WA. So he already sent Yule Tide greetings early, just a few moments ago before you arrived. So Malicore get out of the jungle and make it snappy. I will send you both to go and play in the Big City. Then you will give Kaasha's own personal greetings to the Fallen One. Mordel didn't get to play in the Grand Hall but he will get to say hello to a creature far worse than the power bloated mad queen down here.”

    “So there will be great danger, a battle of glory and plenty of blood to wet my talons in?” Mordel interjected greedily.

    “Depends on you both but it is going to be an absolute dark mess. Telak agrees with the General Az. It is time for an unexpected first strike on this terrible creature, whom is the Wa leader of the rest of the world. He is after all the one Torrin and others long ago made the agreement of power with. Do you truly believe it was Torrin's power that raised that sky encompassing God like barrier!? Az was right about the WA though he does not know the true measure of this fel power on this world or any other as a matter of fact. If you don't hurry up Az will get all the glory. Personally I do not care about any of it.”

    Malicore growled brandishing his bow at Pud, who had a finger on a big red button on a little black box and did not back down from the Gifted's nonverbal threat. As Mordel's Dragon senses expanded, he realized several big invisible somethings without a scent were moving closer.

    Mordel bellowed at the Ssilk Gifted ranger, “Give the blasted Naka two of the crystals, Malicore, that I made for you. I can always make more. I will have the glory that you denied me in Dralk!”

    Mordel turned his head slightly looking at the Gnome with a single eye, “I do have one final question Gnome. What has been going on down here?

    Grudingly Malicore went to give the little Gnome the two crystals under the baleful eyes of Mordel. Pud snatched the crystals and set them into the silvery latticework.

    Pud scratched his head, “A simple enough question but for the full answer there is not enough time now to delve into it. I will give you the bare bones of it as the humans say. Once in the first age of the world two races of the sea built the majority of this place for it was under water carved out of a mountain. With the near destruction of the world with the Great War at the end of the First Age and the cataclysms that followed destroyed almost all that was built. The Goddess down here discovered it later and drained it. The Withered Aegis long ago looted this place for its wealth and stone to be used elsewhere. Telak says Doom was known by another name and was a beautiful place long before our histories began. The Dwarves rediscovered it with the appearance of a sinkhole. The fact of what it has become is tragic. This ancient portal is the only thing left here of a glorious civilization's history long since forgotten. The builders of this place and their glory are now just dust of the ages long since blown away by the wind as far as we know. Telak did not explain anything further about these races.”

    “Now on with the present. Put on the back of the portal quickly Mordel as well as the stone flooring in front. The activation sequence is about to start. Malicore, get on Mordel's back. Mordel, back up as far as you can then hit the opening portal flying. Sorry you missed the fight here Mordel. The WA pulled out all of its power. The Dwarves got loose and attacked anything that moved and the mad Myloc Queen tried a land grab. The outcome was predictable. The Dwarves were already dead. Mylocs were in the flesh so the Dwarves left them in piles so to speak. The Queen is still frothing over such a big number of dead children. Remember that where you are going, up can be down and down can be up. Also remember that....... ”

    Mordel's bellow of angry Draconic frustration with the Naka's rambling cut the Gnome's instruction short while filling and echoing into the other passages. Mordel quickly backed up to the far wall with Malicore on his back as the winds from the portal snatched at his great wings. The floating upright disk of the portal was fully lit up and expanding already now three times its normal size. The batteries to both sides were bubbling and exploding. Mordel launched himself off the far wall with his hind taloned paws, wings beating then folding around himself and Malicore, as the shrieking winds sucked them in.

    Pud Blowfuse gestured frantically screaming, almost drowned out by the howling swirling winds and flowing colors as the Gifted pair passed him, “Fly Fools Fly!!! and don't forget that in magically enhanced Darkness….........”

    Suddenly the portal was quiet before he could finish. The dust and silence settled quickly. Pud sighed, stepped up to the palm of a huge glowing metal hand. Both vanished in a puff.

    In the distance the power bloated Myloc Queen's howls echoed faintly over a Divine interloper so close to her kingdom..........



    Twilight of the Gods continues



    Last edited by Skirnir Ouija Glada; February 16th, 2019 at 07:12 PM.
    Skirnir

  2. #62

    Default Re: Disturbing News

    Battles Part 28


    Conflict Part 1


    In-Transit / In High Far Night Sky Above


    Number One floated in geostationary orbit above the capital of the Withered Aegis East of the Forbidden WA Barrier while reviewing his data before carrying out his orders.


    The tides of time were inescapable in most realities. The great master had however decided to make this world a statement to his most ancient foe on this world called, the Withered Aegis. This world was no different than those before it. The Withered Aegis was the Chaos of Undead, the antithesis of life. In countless realms of the macro cosmos Telak had turned his attention elsewhere or elsewhen following the rules the Macrocosmic Grand Balance required. These in turn had fallen to the Undead Chaos in all of its varied names, crushed beneath tidal waves of mediocrity, the want of power and the finality of greed. Tools and the technologies they bring, decided form, structure, order and ultimately the process of balanced function. Perhaps this little world, the ancient enemy had so much invested in, would see the enlightenment that only the God of Technology could bring. His Master was not going to follow the rules this time. Entropy of the universe had had enough of a lead, time after time. Telak, his master, had decided that it was time for the process of Entropy to grind to a halt here. He was going to “jump in the mud, get dirty and achieve the final victory of last man standing” so the human carbon units say. The grand advance of the WA across the entirety of the cosmos would be stopped dead in its tracks. For the first time Telak had an odd group of allies in his ancient fight of order vs. chaos and life vs. unlife. No longer would Telak's alliance be reactive. Thousands of Aeons had passed since this world's creation. The patience of what some deities thought was a shallow minded God could not be underestimated, as Telak had shown him.

    Number One, as Pud Blowfuse called him, was the eldest of all Telak's technology. He appeared only as a diminutive automaton half the size that the Gnomes create. His greater structure was located in folded space in another dimension. Number One had been found by Telak , who had repaired him to complete functionality. He was a pre-existing prototype of a machine civilization. In a distant galaxy far far away this civilization had existed before the present cycle of creation. Upon awakening he and Telak understood each other perfectly.

    This was an exciting time. Telak had told him he would get more data concerning these diverse representative groups of carbon units. Telak would show how despite their limited processing and limited perceptions most would come to see enlightenment on this nearly ruined world. Telak had forbade him to explore below Tazoon or to speak to the five sentient living great power crystals, despite his objections.

    The process of evolution could not be disturbed lest the fragile carbon units and their supposed divine counterparts, with their primitive cognitive capabilities, destroy the world like they had done before. The carbon unit Telak had acquired for him to analyze over time was a fine example. In a few Aeons Pud Blowfuse would hopefully begin to understand the rudiments of Telak's grand plan. Meanwhile he would be guarded and guided subtly as his reasoning expanded to include a greater view of the workings of the macro-cosmos in all of its mathematical glory. Gnomes were aggressive, excitable, limited, impulsive yet clearly the most most objective, logical and calmest of all the biped races. Smallest of the walking races, Gnomes were understandably Telak's chosen carbon units tho interestingly enough the others gladly followed him.

    Number One had already sent Telak's one meter spheres, on their way to their designated points of contact. They would impact over the next few hours. He stood on the final sphere. Devoid of magic it was five meters in diameter without any indication of the power it contained. Unreactive at first sight and nonreactive to Number One it merely floated in space like a misplaced piece of furniture.

    The superior to the Fallen One of the Withered Aegis, as referred to on this world was without true structure. It finally arrived at the precise time and place Telak had calculated. As usual the WA entity was unable to follow any true inductive or deductive process of thought as Telak had described. The only original ideas it had were from those creatures it absorbed and reanimated for a period of time. Entropic consciousness always arrived quickly and the true form of instinctive chaotic evil was fully manifested in the end.

    The floating mass of the WA zipped past Number One far below him and was already beginning to burn in the upper atmosphere. It did not seem to understand how zero gravity movement worked. An amorphous mass with amoeba-like pseudopods undulating this way and that trying to hold on to something which of course was not there. Number One watched with detachment and waved politely projecting the simplest binary message of a courteous 'how are you and good bye,' as per Telak's orders. For some reason the creature seemed to be upset, but by the circuits of the Great Creator AI he could not calculate why. It tried to keep threatening but in space no one can hear you scream.

    Looking at the chronometer built into his arm Number One gently moved the sphere one thirty thousandth of a millimeter to the right. He tapped the sphere with the exact amount of force required since Telak did not wish to terra-form the planet below from scratch, which would have been the more logical thing to do. The sphere began to take on a non-distinct border absorbing light and heat as it gained momentum with inertia to its target directly below in the center of the huge twenty square kilometer capital. The sphere would, of course, arrive on time at the designated impact point to achieve Telak's objective, as multiple events would occur simultaneously to the specified outcome. Neither the humanoids, dragons or their associated divinities would know except of course Telak's allies. After all, the divine ones would get extremely upset if they truly understood Telak's power.

    Number One finishing processing, “Time to go. Telak had work for him two galaxies over. A Non-Carbon unit's work was never done.” He vanished instantly without a sound as twelve falling stars arced across the sky, while one dropped straight down, all caused no doubt by the converance of all the realms......


    East of the Great Barrier ground level


    The Fallen One had been pacing in the grand plaza before sitting on his throne. He had stood up to greet one of the lesser Visages of the most ancient Chaotic evil that had been expected to arrive. He could almost hear its great rage and frothing wrath but suddenly it disappeared.

    He sat down on his massive throne facing southward across from the ancient Temples in an arc before him. He glanced to the right. The WA-manufactured barrier he had created stood solidly in the west, despite the flashes of light behind coming from its puny ongoing war. His agreements with his Masters' mortal servants across the great barrier to the West had failed over and over in Istaria, though he had been reassured by their latest emissaries this very night. He chuckled evilly to himself with the knowledge that all the mortals thought their enemy Torrin had, through his own power, created and done so many things. No mere mortal could do what he had accomplished.

    He expanded his magical senses to the North only the frozen corrupted neon green ice was behind him. Looking to the East there were only his strongholds, throughout the single most massive continent on this world. His third eye and its great power reached further out across the world. Less than a handful of areas remained on land not under his dominion. A third of the great oceans lay stagnant and desecrated from the huge barriers he had placed connecting the land masses to stop the world tides. His greatest threat was from the sea peoples on the far side of the world, but even their power had been decimated when he blocked off the Sea Goddess' Stone Temple Deep with its magical powers and single horrific guardian long ago.

    Something nagged at the back of his awareness. Something was wrong. With one hand under his chin, two hands gripped the arm rests on his throne tightly while one hand stroked his Corrupted Divine Necklace of power. He gazed out over the grand plaza filled with thousands of living or dead in chains laboring or being tortured, while others were roasted, as before East snacks, for exotic creatures from forgotten dark realities. The plaza had been raised over the immense now empty magical lake that had been over one kilometer in diameter surrounding Palmyra in the past.

    Was there a danger here he could not see? He was the Favored One, called by his enemies the Fallen One, Emperor of a thousand conquered realms. His capital alone was twenty square kilometers, taking ten thousand years to build with slave labor. Hundreds of Portals could take him anywhere to a thousand different conquered realms scattered in time and space. What could not be finished in life was finished in everlasting bound death.

    He was over fifteen meters tall and easily greater than ten thousand kilograms in weight. He had cloven hoofs for feet and four arms coming from his torso. He had huge ram horns on his head and his massive delineated high density muscle bound flesh was filled with burnt runes of protection and power over his entire body. He feared no enemy alive, dead or divine. Large Talons equipped the ends of his huge fingers, if he did not need weapons. A third eye was in the middle of his forehead. Huge bat like wings could give him flight. He could command the four elements for several intervals and even slow down the passage of time for a short period to meet his needs.

    His ancient masters had ripped and disassembled him and then rebuilt his flesh hundreds of times, as his power grew over thousands of years. He feared only his own ancient Masters. A God or perhaps a Goddess could fight him and survive only to be in turn enslaved. He was after all invincible. His true name had been lost countless ages ago, thus protecting him from lesser or greater powers attempting to enslave him.

    With the arrival of his capital on this far flung world by his Masters, his time for total obliteration and domination was at hand. This world would be no different than all the other fallen worlds. He was the Doom of Life, tip of a sword never defeated, welded by the most ancient Gods of Evil Chaos.

    He stood up clapping all four hands. The screams and wails of thousands in the Great Plaza ceased. All awaited his command in undead silence. With a never felt before twinge in his gut he looked out over his tens of thousands of dominated subjects.

    Suddenly, a round non-distinct bordered sphere fell into the middle of the packed Plaza swallowing up the stone and undead beneath it, causing a perfectly round bore-hole while not making a sound. Without a thought the Fallen One's runes suddenly burned brightly in his flesh with tendrils of smoke rising from the dread inscriptions.

    Then came the sounds of wrenching and fracturing of stone. Huge cracks reached out from the bore, as the great plaza began to fall into the dried covered lake with its one hundred meter deep shallows and near abysmal depth in the two hundred meter wide sunken center. His great wings lifted him as a Withered Aegis sphere of protective green flames engulfed him, but even with his power he was drawn inexorably towards the twenty meter bore hole.

    He drew upon his great works for more power. The Great Barrier in places began to ripple. Desecrated stone, rotting plant life and creatures flew around him as they were sucked into the bore. He could not see an enemy. There was nothing to vent his great power on. With a echoing scream of hate across the blighted lands of the huge continent his sphere of flaming neon green power dimmed, as he was sucked towards the center of the great bore.........

    Standing on a terraced balcony on a floating island far above the highest clouds, two Gods and two Goddesses watched the events on the ground in the air before them. Their actions had been decided in their agreement. Their children would not fall to the Withered Aegis. Let the rest of the Pantheon decide for themselves. The mere existence of the Withered Aegis and the results of the Pantheon's compliancy in the mortal world could be seen in the events of the night around them. Telak God of Technology as well as the Mortal General Az were right. The time was now to strategically strike first and then to fight—on this plane.

    The four divine entities enhanced Telak's early Yule Tide gifts sent by Number One to the East and West across the world with its long forgotten lands and seas. To the West of the great barrier the Juggernaut and its escorts headed North. Sergeant Major Ariella, left in charge of the Juggernaut and its escorts, gave orders for a scorch and burn followed by blessed salt after dropping their payloads on the WA temples in the Eastern Deadlands. The huge columns of fire lit up the raging four elements.



    The Twilight of the God's complacency was over........



    The End of the beginning had begun
    [/CENTER]
    Last edited by Skirnir Ouija Glada; March 2nd, 2019 at 11:27 PM.
    Skirnir

  3. #63

    Default Re: Disturbing News

    Battles Part 29



    (With her tail stiff and straight up behind her, fur hackled up on her shoulders and an expression of fearful excited bewilderment, Nimbles, as the wind howled around her, called Katara on her tell stone. Not realizing she had fumbled the setting the message went out on all crystal channels, “Katara? Huh umm just how do you fly an aerial Scout? I got twenty seconds maybe less so make it snappy.”


    The Four Fleet Command Staff responded with dead silence while Katara's howling laughter trailed her as the Kon's combat aerial dive began............) Battles Part 26


    ***


    Conflict Part 2



    In-Transit



    Captain Goodlight had begun her sloping dive and partial rotation to extend out the message hook and pole with the precious cargo for Vargus to snatch with the same device on his ship, The Whatever. She had already notified General Az that Vargus would be bringing in the special cargo. She had turned off her connection to Az, since he began to curse about idiots not following orders. The Gifted backpack was flapping away in the breeze with the extended pole bending this way and that.


    The night was clear above the Kon. The WA cloud cover was retreating much further inland, as the Plaguebearer summoned more power heading towards the Eastern Outpost. Her destination was not that far away when she diverted her craft to assist the Gifted Dragon Knoble, the only honest player of “bones” she knew. He owed her fifteen gold and she was not going to let the debt possibly die with him. Takara had already angled her weapon array and was firing below them, trying to track the invisible target following Knoble. The Light darts and bolts made for illuminating the air and water with long trails of fading bright different colored lights were beginning to work. For some strange reason she was laughing and not maintaining her usual fierce focused silence.


    Goodlight opened up the ships battle net communication, but did not speak since the Kon was supposed to be under crystal silence.


    Squi's agitated voice was easily recognized while she shouted at Katara, “We are supposedly under crystal silence orders you dimwit. The Captain will bury us so deep in paperwork we will never see the light of day or much less our bonuses from the Grey Council. So who are you talking to while ignoring the Captain's orders, oh weapon specialist extraordinaire?!”


    Squi's voice hardly penetrated the inward reverie as Katara touched, whispered and sang to her children. She took care of them and they took care of her with never a failure, jam or gliche from any of them. Looking around down and back in her weapons area, Katara stroked the huge weapon behind and below her. She murmured to the most silent of all her children, “Don't worry baby momma has not forgotten about you!”


    Squi demanded shouting, “Did you hear me Saris!!?”


    Katara grinned to herself with a new idea how her kids might have a bit of fun and reset her munitions while answering unusually calmly, “ Yes Yes......Well..........that was Nimbles, who fumbled and put out an all call for emergency assistance on all channels. We have all sorts of help coming for this supposed to be secret never did happen mission. It seems she is in charge of flying that fast little modified Scout and Vargus is out on a grapple ten meters behind. As much as I like Nimbles, she can be a real air-head. So she is learning as she goes for something she thought was easy. She is a thief and messenger after all and this is no different than on the job training or so she thinks!”


    Goodlight interjected, “What??! Vargus is not flying that craft? The cargo is out on the message pole and hook. We are almost in position for the hand off.”


    Squi responded, “Well about that Captain....,” coughing politely, “there might be a problem.....”


    “Yes? Since we have hand off contact supposedly in thirty seconds with half our sails down,” whispered Goodlight with a sharpened edge to her voice.


    “With a hesitant sigh Squi tartly replied, “Look at your scope Captain. We got a blip on the crystal screen with a strange moving tiny one behind it. Intersect not in thirty seconds but in about one minute she is kinda meandering around a bit. She appears to be coming straight down for the moment. That will put us two hundred meters above the water at contact.


    “How high is Knoble above the water Squi? Since he has an object behind him and another in the water coming from the East.”


    “He is only one hundred meters above the water and slowly dropping. The Unidentified Aerial Object is about two hundred meters behind him and approximately three times his size. Unidentified Underwater Object coming to him is about three hundred meters away and is speeding up. It is developing a twenty high meter wave in front of it. That critter is about three times greater in size than the UAO following Knoble in the air.”


    “Okay its a no go with Vargus. He and Nimbles are on their own. Katara notify Knoble, that he will have to make the snatch and grab then deliver to Az. As you both know we cannot bring back in the cargo once fully extended. Knoble will need to arc straight up with a near dead stop pivot that only a Dragon can do then call the wind to speed up to match us. Determine the mark Squi. I am notifying Az of the change in plans.


    Az, the ultimate Commander of all the forces, under the table of course, looked down at his tell stone. He had no help to give. The Scouts that had brought them were already gone. The players in this drama were too far away for his Wardogs to fly out. He began to mutter to himself cursing between words and shivering with suppressed rage. The Kon was supposed to deliver the precious cargo! Then that idiot captain changed the plan to Vargus delivering! However, that scallywag Vargus was flying on a tow line (by the Gods!!) behind that illegal Scout of his and now a Gifted One was going deliver the precious cargo!?.....later than expected!!? Why did it have to be a Gifted one!? Everyone knew that you could never be sure what they were going to do next. Did Destiny have it out for him!?The Wardogs around him took a couple of steps backwards. They knew what was coming. The Dwarven ghosts began to make wagers between themselves passing ethereal notes and coin as they watched the strange winged creatures betting on what their shaking leader was going to do next while their ethereal breaths caught in their throats.


    Nimbles took off the restraint belts so she could stretch out her legs to better reach the

    pedals. The screw ball flying monster had torn everything out to fit himself in the cockpit and it reeked with the smell of burnt poor quality wood oil. She had already figured out several important facts. If she moved the guiding stick to the right, it made Vargus go left and then she went left. If she pushed the guide stick to the left, then the opposite happened. So one had to push left to go right and right to go left.


    Nimbles thought to herself, “Gnome magic was sooooo easy to figure out. I will figure out all those hundred or so grey buttons, toggles, switches, levers and pedals with four crystal screens in a moment,” smirking to herself.


    Taking a very patronizing tone she addressed Vargus who had been very quiet these last few minutes, “Okie dokie Vargus the flying Wardoggie do you have your tongue up your nose from the wind ducking around back there like some flying puppy? Where is the rendezvous point? We are at one thousand meters on that course you set and going really fast.”


    Vargus sputtering, bouncing between cross winds from the air on the sails, bellowed, “You little ground hugging *---* I will snap your spine. I put it in nice bright red letters on the pale green screen next to the purple flashing control level, so you would absolutely see it. I had a faint hope -–perhaps—you could figure it out you empty headed, bearded ,back jungle throwback. So you have to go *---* *----* down! and then.........”


    Nimbles was not very pleasantly conducive to anyone other than herself being right. She snapped at him cutting him off before he finished, “Get a grip you flying sow, pull up your knickers, gird your loins and act like a real male or do you need me to do that for you too?!!”


    Vargus said nothing totally stunned by his ill fated waspish feline mission companion.


    Hearing no return Nimble growled thinking she had been further insulted.


    “I will give you down you impudent wretch.” She thought viciously, “ Besides she was not going to tell him she was color blind. After all, the only one in the world that knew about this personal problem was Bytsi, her Dwarven best friend at the Long Drop Tavern in North Crystal, who helped her coordinate her fashionably colored wardrobe for work and play.”


    Squinting and looking down she focused on the control board. There were four toggles that were flipped inward and seemed to be a slightly brighter grey on the very last row. That must be it. With an odd feeling in the pit of her stomach she flipped the four toggles back. The encircling sails snapped and folded. Nimbles realized she had lost forward momentum. The illegally modified Scout ship Whatever dropped like a stone ever so slowly angling downward. Nimbles found herself hanging behind the cockpit stretched out in the wind. Howling in fear she kept calling for Vargus, her nemesis, but her voice was carried away in the screeching wind.


    Vargus started climbing back to the vessel along the special grappling rope with his wings folded as the wind hammered him. His hands were becoming raw and bleeding. Extending his talons he clawed his way up the wooden decking, scoring and cracking the deck planks. With his dragon blood sight he could see the surface of the choppy sea coming with speed. His powerful muscles screamed with burning pain. He had to get so much done, as well as to deliver the calamity called Nimbles to Az for Gods know what. It was not the fear of the coming monsters he could see below that gnawed at his gut, being burned alive, blown apart or even eaten except for one embarrassing fact. The former womanizing, hard drinking human murderer, thief and assassin ...could...not...swim....


    Knoble was in a fix. An enemy was coming toward him in the water which was far larger in size than the creature behind him in the air. The mission change had caught him by surprise. He was now only twenty meters above the water. In the distance to the East a twenty meter wave was being created against the the flowing currents in this sea. The behemoth was just below the surface and speeding up. The Gnome vessels looked to be headed right at each other above him heading downward.


    There was the pivot point. Knoble turned nearly in place then headed straight up without losing speed. He could feel the creature behind him begin to arc upward closing the gap between them. He had to get the precious cargo to Az. Too much depended on what was in the backpack even though Az had refused to inform anyone about that or this secret mission. Only the very odd order about all the city magistrates at 2 AM would chant the same spell at the same time then nothing else was given at the general staff meeting aboard the Juggernaut. The Gifted Dragon had never failed in all his long life. Tonight would be no different.


    Squi called out in fearful urgency, “The Whatever is descending faster than ramming speed. Intersect is in twenty seconds. Nimbles is not in the cockpit. She seems to be flying next to it. We cannot avoid impact.”


    Goodlight was flipping toggles and switches yelling to Squi, as all the Aerial Gifted disks mounted on both sides of the vessel turned off, “Drop sails, boosters out and on with guiding fins extended. Now! Takara drop the Dim Witty's --Crowd Pleaser--. Now! Squi eject all anti- personnel mines. Now!. ” She could only hope the theoretical maneuver would work with all excess weight eliminated. She sent a plea to the Goddess that had taken her in.


    Katara released the steam clamps holding the huge urban legend weapon. Her largest child was dull black with spiralling horrific ancient spells and curses in gold and platinum. The scripts in numerous dead languages seemed to beginning to move on their own with a mesmerizing pattern. The ten thousand and one spells radiated fear, curses, terrible forbidden enhancements in all arcane magics known and mostly forgotten, spiralling around the device with beautiful calligraphy and script. She stroked her child as it fell away.


    Katara called to her child in a Saris song of love and farewell then as it dropped saying in the ancient sacred language of her people, “Make momma proud sweetheart. Shine baby shine!!”


    Upon arriving at the cockpit Vargus reached back and grabbed Nimbles's leather vest with his taloned hand while the other pulled them both into the cockpit. Grunting with effort he shoved her to the flooring by his feet, watching the Kon streak suddenly further in front of the Whatever with both firework boosters burning. A very large black three meter object was falling slightly behind the Kon, as she pulled away in front. He did not know what the Kon was doing as she speeded up. She headed down firing all four forward fireworks and holding them for three seconds simultaneously before releasing. The mines shot outward and dropped a mere second or so behind it.


    The attack/defensive move was a maneuver designed to get an additional power boost as almost two thirds of the Kon's total weight had been eliminated with the release of its biggest magical ground weapon---The Crowd Pleaser. Vargus shuddered then gasped with the absolute knowledge that he,“it” and and all those other munitions were heading in the same direction. Fearfully frantic he shouted at Nimbles about what pedals to push down simultaneously. He flipped back on the aerial disks on the sides of the vessel, sails popped out and pulled back the flying guide stick as the muscles in his back, shoulders and arms rippled and knotted with the strain. Vargus knew with a strange foresight he would need the last booster firework.


    With a sense of unmitigated horror he remembered what General Az had told the Wardogs years ago, “There are only four Crowd Pleasers left in the world. The others that have been found were dismantled. Their crews were hung immediately thereafter. The locations of the remaining ones were compartmental classified Grey Council secrets. The devices were considered too dangerous to let any of the other Governments have one or various racial cities. All were considered unsuitable for sound respectable usage and Gods help the Holy Lands of Istaria, if Tazoon got one with all of its Imperial corruption.


    The devices were Insured by the Three Sisters Law Firm. The same law firm that brokered an agreement between all the racial cities in the Tazoon Accords for outlawing in all the lands of Istaria certain weapons due to their causing terribly painful deaths and/or unimaginable horrific environmental destruction.”


    The grossly magically enhanced Shock and Awe device had been the brain child of a paranoid schizophrenic genius with psychotic episodes in Dim Witty Fireworks. After having a triple illegally distilled Knut's whiskey induced nightmare of being chased by a giant Bogeyman through water, stone, air and fire, the lead designer had to be restrained for some time. Thereafter, followed five years of frantic fanatical design and feverish work schedules resulting in the final product. The Crowd Pleaser was three meters long and two and a half tons in weight. Satisfaction was Guaranteed in any environment with a full refund,---if anyone was left alive to get it.




    The Crowd Pleaser came with its own unique marketing jingle of 'Light em Up and Burn em Down in the Dark..........'”



    The Beginning of the End continues
    Skirnir

  4. #64

    Default Re: Disturbing News

    Battles 30



    Conflict Part 3


    In Transit


    Knoble saw the message pole as the Kon rotated toward him. A full spin with his wings folded for a split second enabled him to dodge the four over large fireworks and numerous anti-personnel mines. The Kon was coming to him on a near collision course straight down at him. He recognized the Crowd Pleaser behind the Kon flickering past him. Having grabbed the backpack, Knoble bounced off the side of the Whatever four heart beats behind the Kon in a near microsecond aerial impact. Knoble, fearful of losing the backpack by dying from the grossly illegal devastating devices, called for the wind with his wings fully spread. He began to lose consciousness from the numerous waves of devastating detonations below him. He was unaware of the giant Elemental Dragons less than one hundred meters behind him.

    The shell of the huge creature was seven meters wide with multiple segmented legs, stalks for eyes and a maul of a mouth with many moving parts. Two tremendous pincer like claws one on each side were still as the monstrosity hovered in the water fifty meters below the surface. A strange bipedal stood on the dorsal aspect of the huge shell of the great seamonster.

    The bipedal creature was an ancient male, two and a half meters tall, lean and wiry with webbed hands and feet. Gills constantly moved on its neck in continuous waves The small scales covering it body were iridescent reflecting the bright colors of the ancient long forgotten coral reefs. Its eyes were overly large, fully black with double membranes and slowly blinking lids. A low crest of bone ran on top of its head and down its back. In its right hand was a tall coral and sea mithril staff three meters in height crowned in perfectly carved spherical jewels.

    The multitude which followed behind them could only be described as an army of strange creatures of the depths, as well as those obvious creatures similar to the leader but with only a fish like tail rather than appendages like legs. The huge vicious unknown water creature in front of them was getting ready to attack its prey which could only be in the sky. They had been tracking behind it for hours. A similar army had been following the other huge aerial creature flying above while their compatriots moved under the waves waiting patiently like the silent great predators stalking their prey from the shadows.

    With the terrifying device still right in front of him in the air going straight down, Vargus pulled the flying guide stick hard to the right while giving the chaotic calamitous Saris a 2nd set of instructions. He tried a slightly different direction since as the Whatever was not responding. The arc was less than Kon's but still tight. With a howling scream of pain from the task he was attempting to do, Vargus finally managed to barrel roll to Port. He adjusted course, gaining altitude with a new wind crystal and full sails. He could see the battle receding in the distance. His mission termination point was not that far from their present position by flight of Dragons. They were already two hundred meters away when the lesser explosions began.

    Vargus thought to himself laughing hysterically , “By the Gods we just might arrive alive!”

    The huge Elemental Creatures had ignored each other with the intent of each to obtain the snack. One arced upward and on arched downward to snatch it first. The prey though, defied all reason, as it changed course without stopping going straight up. The creatures impacted each other. Enraged, the Elemental Dragons attacked each other with tooth and claw. Neither noticed events around themselves as they were fully engaged in their own rage.

    Six fiery trails headed downward. The Kon arced upward just above the giant toothed mouths of the creatures leaving her colorful trails in the sky for all to see. The fireworks hit randomly. Three three struck one and the last on the other. Their detonations created their own shockwaves through the air and water severely damaging both combatants. Additional damage ensued by the twenty four anti-personnel mines. Each battling Dragon then called upon its own Element for more power, as both were severely injured by the fireworks and mines. A huge fast moving vortex of water rose as a thickened yet visible vortex funnel of air descended. The Crowd Pleaser fell between and below them into the curvature of water magically created by the Water Elemental Dragon's vortex of water. Knoble, now unconscious, was caught up in the air vortex being dragged down beneath the sea's surface.

    One of the half fish and half humanoid water creatures leapt through the howling air of the funnel snagging the backpack from the unconscious Dragon. Two of the bipedal sea people stood on a different finned huge sea monster. With glowing green spheres around their webbed hands they shoved the Gifted Dragon out of the funnel back above the water, as they entered the other side of the vortex healing him. Knoble headed straight up and south calling the wind before realizing he no longer had the Gifted Backpack.

    Goodlight and Squi were pressed back in their seats with the maneuver of the Kon. Katara, in a focused euphoria, continued firing at the huge combatants while releasing the only two overly large firework rockets from the stern at the Elemental Dragons. Both fire work rockets fell towards the sea and deeper below the water's surface. At the apex of the three hundred and sixty degree overhead roll, Goodlight barrel rolled changing direction and heading to due South toward a two thousand meter aerial line of flight. Sails popped out, fins retracted as the boosters were ejected to fall in the distance below them. Katara looked back at her children showing off with a tear in her eye while humming a Saris mother's song of praise.

    The maelstrom of air and water deepened between the fighting titans nearly to the seabed. The two titans continued fighting inherently knowing this great duel of power would be to the death. The sea people underwater High Wizards with their staves through their own prescience realized what was going to happen next. There was no time to retreat. Raising their living staves and calling upon their own power and the power given to them by their armies. Two solid huge walls of seawater many meters thick rose from the depths of the seabed extending into the sky East and West of the dueling pair. The Crowd Pleaser silently sank unnoticed by the battling monstrosities into the inky darkness of deep water too heavy to be buffeted this way and that with its strange pulsing glowing scripts spiraling around its body. The timer ran out on the three meter long two and a half ton Crowd Pleaser.

    The Crowd Pleaser detonated. The inner arena of the maelstrom of both deadly powers of Air and Water shredded and burned from seabed to surface. The frothing water instantly vaporized the sea at ground zero. The sandy bottom of this northern sea turned into glass in the center of effect. The huge battling creatures were obliterated into multicolored flaming fragments of burning flesh and bone, both in water and into the high sky above. The watery walls of the Wizards collapsed then titanically rebounded upward nearly as high as the column of water, steam and burning debris. The dark tormented sea with its stench of burning metal, flesh and bone rose up several hundred meters with a towering column of flames brilliantly.....shining..... Shockwaves decimated the armies of the shallow and deep sea peoples with multiple ripping concussions.

    Az thought to himself as he viewed the battle and the carnage in the far distance with the special Gnome spyglass, gasping with disbelief and eyes then widening in recognition, “Who could have known!? Who could have known!?” Frightened, he shouted over the battle net tell for the Gnomes underwater with their breathing gadgets setting explosives, as well as the Dwarven support crews on shore to run for higher ground or seal themselves in the tunnels. There was no real way to prepare.

    Earthquakes battered the seaside lands destroying towns, structures and roads. The immense waves headed out in all directions washing out surrounding shorelines hundreds of meters away. The most northern aspects of the Eastern Deadlands burned with multi colored flames and detonations as the sacred pure waters of the sea drenched them temporarily cleansed them.

    The Wardogs leapt up in the air with their wings beating furiously trying to gain altitude before the sky blocking waves hit. The Gnomes deeper in the water could only hunker down and hope for the best. Gnomes and Dwarves on shore ran to the partially hidden tunnel complex leaving equipment behind them. The two sets of waves hit taking many Gnomes over the sharp hillsides to dead and desecrated valleys beyond along with their Dwarven compatriots. The Dwarven ghosts headed straight into the stony hillsides afraid of the water despite the fact they were already dead.

    The aerial Wardogs immediately began to hunt for the Gnomes and Dwarves swept away as the now corrupted waters receded while the desecrated lands burned leaving a fog smelling of unclean death.

    Approaching the contact point in the Eastern Deadlands, Vargus made the mistake of assuming his good fortune without putting on the safety restraint straps. The aerial shockwaves had knocked the tiny Whatever sideways nearly to the distant shoreline to the South.

    Nimbles totally outraged at being tossed around as if she was nothing did the surprise Chi attack her granny had taught her. Grabbing the under edge of the cockpit decking over her head, she launched herself upward with both legs straightened into a single mid-mass two heeled kick on the Wardog. Surprised he flew backwards, as the tow line unraveled, and found himself once again at the end of the tow line bouncing in the wind. Nimbles once again attempted to take control of the Whatever in but had not reckoned the presence of the high velocity air currents heading to the great barrier. The high roads of winds far above the clouds had been misplaced by the creatures of Darkness. The two hundred to four hundred kilometer per hour winds now shrieked from one hundred to two hundred meters in altitude. A Eastward invisible torrent of wind snatched away the little vessel going East, as if it was a twig in a howling harsh wind. Like her compatriot being too confident, she had not buckled herself in and once again she flew parallel to the decking holding on by her claws for her mortal life.

    Vargus was ready to give up. This was just too much. He suddenly remembered the little accessory he had deftly stolen from Nimbles when she attacked him the first time in the cockpit. Pulling it out he realized it was a cosmetic snap shut powder and hand mirror he had seen countless females use. Popping it open, he figured to himself that he may as well look good going into the afterlife although no one really was sure where the Wardogs would go. A male--always--had to look good for chasing the females they sought. Figuring he was going to die, he saw Az looking at him with a divine wrath on his face from the shoreline, so he blew his King and General a kiss good-bye in defiance and waved daintily.

    Everything was happening too fast now. “Oops,” Nimbles thought, as the good ship Whatever impacted on the Great Forbidden WA barrier. Looking Eastward beyond the bow of the Whatever, Vargus did not have time to process what he saw.

    Most of the Wardogs saw the act of audacity to their General and King. Impressed the Wardogs stepped backwards again, as Az looked at them all clapping their fists on their chests. Snatching out his Black Sword of Power, Az released its power at the little ship and his errant warrior in erupting hostility finally becoming fully outraged. The meter wide line of black flowing flames hit the barrier as it continued to ripple, flowing through it in a obliterating path of complete destruction over twenty meters wide. The result of Az's death strike was too late.

    The Dwarves and Gnomes were being brought back to shore by the Wardogs as others ran out of the tunnels to check on their friends. The ghosts stepped out of the stony cliffs. Feeling abjectly humiliated, Az jumped up and down in unbridled fury on his God made Dark Sword of Destruction and Obliteration, while all watched in stunned amazement. .

    Completely unobserved, yet displacing a large amount of water, the giant barnacle encrusted creature with its huge pincer type claws stood up on its segmented legs with the female Grand Temple High Wizard Prestress standing on top. As they rose above the level of the water, the pair viewed the chaos on the shoreline, while the Grand High Temple Wizard held her staff of power and authority in her right webbed hand and a Gifted Backpack in the left webbed hand.

    She was utterly shocked at the chaos. The most ancient remaining histories said that Sky Peoples were very irrational, violent, impulsive, emotional and erratic creatures. The Gods themselves had supposedly given up on all the races of the Sky Peoples then tossed them all on the Skylands, leaving them there in disgust. Only the Dryads had been contacted in desperation long ago.

    She was the most ancient and powerful of True Peoples of the Shallows and Deep Royal Temples and yet the Sky People completely ignored her. All watched a male with a crown wrapped in black flames jumping up and down in some obscure ritual on top of a large sword laying in the sand.

    They whispered and looked on in obeisance and awe at the individual they surrounded. Amazingly they seemed to be exchanging coin and bits of writing furtively. Tapping her staff on the Back of the giant creature, a greenish blue extended stroke of lightening struck. It burned the entire surrounding shorelines of the ancient small secluded Pirate Port for almost a minute to get everyone's attention. The ancient forgotten little port sat above one of the great former openings to Stone Temple Deep one hundred meters below.

    Suddenly realizing the presence of a monster and powerful interloper most of the biped civilians jumped up and down screaming, while running around frantically in circles except for the strange creatures with wings who stared in disbelief. The adored and watched male was frozen in place like an idiot with his mouth slackly hanging open looking at her standing on his big sword laying in the sand. The Dwarven ghosts hid again in the stone hillsides while sneaking peeks at the fearsome monstrosities.

    She thought carefully with great inner focus not to make a mistake for this was the first exchange of greetings with the Sky Peoples in possibly a hundred millennia.

    She took a deep breath and carefully held out her arms encompassing the large crowd on the shore. All was done carefully in the religious historical described correct manner, while making sure to pull back her lips and show all her sharp teeth fully as required.

    Then she uttered the Last Fragment of the Last Remaining Holy Text of Sky People Greetings,


    “...and what time do we call this!?”
    Last edited by Deforian; April 11th, 2019 at 08:01 PM.
    Skirnir

  5. #65

    Default Re: Disturbing News

    Battles Part 31



    Conflict Part 4



    West of the Forbidden Barrier/Eastern Deadlands/Pirates Inlet-Smugglers Bay



    The large stealth scouts floated silently, undetected by all, in an arc fifty meters above the shoreline of the ancient pirate Inlet. Their larger than average sails were folded. The crew wearing tightly woven black mesh were indistinguishable between each other. The dozen ship force had a platoon of heavily armored Gnomian assault warriors split between ships. None spoke and all were still.

    They watched as the drama unfolded below them. The Temple wizard had thrown the back pack to Az and waited for a response but none was delivered. The anger of the wizard was easy to see with her tightening grip on the staff and a stiffer stance. Since she was not addressed the wizard and her huge creature disappeared beneath the dark waters. Az shouted orders. Most packed their gear or what was left of it after the waves and waited. Fleet ships were arriving and transporting the civilians. Az's Wardogs and a small group of Gnomes proceeded into the tunnels. The Dwarven ghosts followed.

    A Medium ship from the 3rd Fleet arrived over the sea where the battle had occurred. Two dozen small fast scouts flew in an expanding grid pattern. There were no survivors found since the emergency call registered in Fleet Command HQ aboard the Juggernaut after their arrival at the battle site. No creatures were noted in the air or under the water. The damage to the shore lines was evaluated. Aerial drops of supplies and personnel assisted on land though in limited numbers. Dead fish were already washing up on the surrounding shorelines. Oddest of all was the fog. A dank greasy free floated approximately three inches above the water. It moved with the waves covering two thirds of the near sea.

    Pirate Inlet was quiet now. The invisible ships slowly dropped to approximately one half meter then became visible. Six individuals hopped down to the shore. Four sat behind the two that stood right at the edge of the water. A vessel eased outward and dropped a device into the center of the Inlet then returned to its position. The water surface rippled with a low faint sonic vibration.

    In the far south of the Eastern Deadlands another dozen Black Gnome vessels floated near the shoreline of the ancient inward sea area known on the ancient common maps as Smuggler's Bay. Like their counterparts in the north, six hopped down to the shoreline with two standing and four sitting. As with the other group of Gnomian individuals a sonic device was dropped into the water and the ships and Gnomes waited for the ancient fabled race. Smugglers bay in centuries past had a small illicit docking area with storage areas for stolen goods but now long since destroyed. As in the north a huge blocked off tunnel entrance was in the deep waters below.

    In Pirate's Inlet the Gnomes, secure in their strength, remained patient, confident and calm.
    They knew the underwater sonic buoy would be answered. Az's personnel comprising the prior group had made a poor showing. They on the other hand knew what to expect now after centuries of argument. The Gnomes unlike Az's group would not fail.

    In the distant past a day finally came that one of the sea creatures was injured and washed up on the shore after a fierce battle underneath the waves that had gone on for days with strange currents and flashes of light in the dark sea. The Gnomes hid the terribly injured creature and cared for it. They did not go out on the waters to fish for fear of what was below that might come out to attack or eat them. Being quick to figure out things, though fearful and shy, the villagers slowly tended to the healing of the strange creature.

    A full moon had passed then others came to the shoreline with weapons of great power and fierce un-Gnomish countenances. Only the village shaman stayed with the strange one, being the bravest of them all. The sea people swam up to the edge of the sandy shore with water swirling around their bodies as they rose from the sea. The recovered sea female slowly stood up gave the shaman her blessing before returning to the water saying nothing. The Sea People left strange things on the shore the next day and so began years of trade in earliest days of the Gnomish people with many minstrels and scholars coming observing, recording and the then leaving. One day the Sea People did not come and never returned, but the knowledge was not lost all of those centuries before. Now the Gnomes were an older race with a civilization of wisdom and knowledge.

    Only the Gnomes still had most of their histories and songs passed down generation to generation. First by the minstrels then by the scholars traveling the world collecting knowledge and always recording for those that came afterward. They never understood why the sea peoples stayed away after the last trade long long ago.

    Not long after the device was dropped, the water swirled with the huge shelled creature and the ancient High Temple Wizard standing on it rose above the waters holding the buoy. Numerous heads rose above the water behind her. She stepped down and laid the device on the sand then stepped back in the water one meter out observing and waiting.

    Both groups of Gnomes in the North and South locations followed the same procedure. Two Gnomes in front stood up bowed to the Temple Wizard to each other then began to dance, facing the Temple Wizard. The dance was basic simple and short. Two of the creatures swam up from behind the Temple Wizard then stood up in front of her with their webbed feet barely in the water as the water flowed around each. The dance was repeated but slightly more complex. The Gnomes responded and so it went until the dances were fluid intricate nearly erotic not touching yet touching as the pairs exchanged partners and the Gnomish dancers rose up on small columns of water provided by the water creature's power. The Gnomes sitting brought out little spheres with buttons. Sound was added to the fluid dancing. Four more stood up behind the dancers standing in the water verbally repeating the sounds. Back and forth the language of sound and movement passed till both understood each other in the time allotted.

    In the North Pirate Inlet the moment had finally come. An ancient Gnome with a beard to his feet stepped down from the ships. He walked to the water then stood ankle deep confidently facing the Tall wizard. He held with both his hands a large closed sea shell with an unknown script on the outside to the ancient female. The wizard moved up and daintily took the huge clam and opened it up. Within was a large ruby made into a perfect sphere. Holding the large sea shell with its perfect ruby sphere inside she turned and faced the vast crowd watching from the deeper waters. With whistles, clicks, trills and body movement she gave her message. The token of friendship from long ago had been returned. Only the littlest walking Skypeople had finally understood. The presentation to the Sea Peoples by the High Wizard was met with approval. Quickly the sea dwellers evacuated and disappeared into the inky waters.

    The Gnomish eldest scholar walked back to the ship thinking to himself, “The stage was set now for both North and South entry points into the tunnel system. The Gnomes would open up the more shallow areas. The Sea Peoples would remove the corrupted stone debris left over. The inner caps much lower in the water blocking the tunnel system would be opened by them.

    As expected the Sea People were jealous of their privacy. Dwarves were tight lipped about their true wealth. Gnomes were closed mouthed, their secrets held tightly in the vises of their little hands. Gnomes did not share easily and never played well with others at the end of the day. The new alliance would remain a secret of the Gnome Intelligence Department of the New Rachival governing council unshared with any other race or city.”

    The black silent ships in the North and South wavered in the air then disappeared into the cloudy night sky. The waters boiled and frothed as explosions cleared most of the shallow corrupted stone covering, revealing the extensive life size mosaics of shells, precious metals and jewels.


    The still waters became more choppy as the strange creatures cleared the way in the dark depths below.....



    End of the Beginning continues
    Last edited by Deforian; May 8th, 2019 at 11:01 PM.
    Skirnir

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