Here we are at long last, the Friday before the launch! And the writers have stepped up for it, WOOT! Great work, Viranda and Lady Thacyk ! And Dark Ghostman, I'm not entirely sure what I just watched, but I'm inclined to blast some seriously psychedelic music now.
Congratulations, Winners, and thank you to all who submitted!
First Place = Viranda (US2) - 'The Viranda Chronicles: Chapter II - The Stranger' Second Place =Lady Thacyk (US2) - 'The Tale of Shiverspine' Third Place = Dark Ghostman (EU2) - 'War of the Trees'
The Viranda Chronicles: Chapter II - The Stranger
When they finally arrived in the village square, a large crowd has already accumulated with a buzz of confusion and fascination. At the center of the crowd, there was a man, unknown to Viranda, sitting on a bench. He kept his head low and in his hand as he leaned against the wood and stone. His clothing was once a dark grey but now were tattered and stained and looked nearly as bedraggled as he who wore them. He looked exhausted and very, VERY upset. Whispers coursed through the crowd like an electrical current: Who was he? Why was he here? What has made him so upset?
Verbose and Hodr came to the front of the crowd with Viranda between them. The crowd parted itself to let them through; Her father was well respected amongst them.
The man looked up at the crowd and spoke in a tired tone “I’m certain you are all wondering what brought me here to you…” He didn’t get to finish his sentence.
“Who are you? Why are you here?”
“What do you want with us?”
“What are you wearing? Are you a warrior or a wizard? What class are you?”
“Who sent you?”
More shouts rang out from the crowd about the man’s ambiguity.
Finally the mayor spoke up:
“Silence! Silence everyone! Let the man speak for himself and perhaps you will have your answers!”
He turned back to the man and nodded.
The man scanned the crowd and, for a moment, locked eyes with Vira. She squeaked and hid behind her mother’s legs.
“My name is Ryder and my class does not matter. I fear the news I bring you is not joyous, but rather grave indeed.” His voice sounded rather regal for a man in his state. He paused for a moment.
“The Black Thrush has returned!” He instantly reached into his coat and pulled out a large black bird feather and a scrap of fabric with the Black Thrush Symbol on it.
The crowd gave a collective gasp and murmurs resonated through the crowd once more. As the mayor tried to quiet the upset crowd again, Vira looked over to the man. He still held the items aloft, but something flashed in his face. What was it? Surely she wasn’t the only one to see it? She scanned the crowd for a sign, but saw none. At last the crowd grew quiet enough for the stranger to speak once more.
“People of maiden! I implore you to stay calm! I tried to warn King Leo but he refused to send troops to aid my people and as a result, my village was burned to the ground with only I surviving! Leo still won’t believe what’s right in front of him!”
Vira recalled hearing about that; so many people had died in the fire. They had said it was the result of a furnace, but had it really been the black thrush?
“People of maiden, I implore you to do what Leo is too cowardly to do! Stand up and fight! Arm yourselves and protect the Seven Realms from the Black Thrust! Pick up your weapons and protect your homes!”
A cheer resonated through the square. The man’s commanding voice filled the people with a patriotic pride.
He smiled. “You are not the only ones. I gave the warning to other villages and they’ve agreed to help as well. We will leave tomorrow at sunrise. You have tonight, my heroes, to prepare yourselves and bid farewell to your families fore I, after all, cannot ensure your safe return.”
The crowd began to disperse with Viranda hearing murmurs on what should and shouldn’t be packed for such a journey.
“You’re not going! I forbid you!
“You FORBID me? I’m not a child Hodr; I can make my own decisions!”
“Well what about me? What about Viranda? What would I have to say to her if her mother never comes back!?”
“The TRUTH Hodr! For once in your life you could always be a bit more honest with our daughter!”
“The truth!? You want me to tell her the truth!? Like WHAT? Like her mother ran off and got herself killed on a stupid quest a random guy gave her!? I don’t trust that man, Verbose!”
“You could tell her I was trying to do the right thing! You know the Black Thrush is rising, you’ve seen the signs yourself for YEARS! They were bound to return someday, is it so hard to believe that it could be now!?”
Vira had been listening in from her room upstairs. This was the first time she’d heard them argue like this, they’ve had arguments in the past but this was the worst.
“If you want to leave then, I don’t care! But you’re not bringing this!”
Vira heard the sound of something heavy and made of metal being picked up and thrown into a chest with the click of a lock followed by her mother yelling;
“You are such a child! You think that locking up my mace will do anything?! I have to leave, Hodr! To keep our home safe. To keep our Vira safe! I have to at least try! With or without your support!”
Vira sat beside her bed and wrapped herself in her blanket, hands against her ears, crying and trying to block the noise out.
“You don’t care!”
“Yes I do!”
“You know I can’t! I want to, believe me, but I can’t!”
“Is it because you’re bored here? Is life here not exciting enough for you or something!?”
“NO! There won’t BE any life here if we don’t fight the Black Thrush!”
“What is it going to take to get through to you!?”
“NOTHING! Absolutely NOTHING!”
“Not even Vira?”
His deadpan tone silenced the argument.
The home fell so silent you could hear a spider’s footsteps.
Verbose spoke very low, very solemnly;
“I’m doing this for Vira.”
Without another word she turned and walked out the door. Vira watched from her bedroom window as her mother walked towards the stores, paper in hand, illuminated by only the light from the windows and the pale, glistening moonlight. A feeling of dread and fear blanketed the young, shivering girl.
The Tale of Shiverspine
by Lady Thacyk
One Upon a time, there was a group of brave heroes; a beautiful Warrior from the land of Glitterspine. A sneaky Hunter from Blackfury Gorge, a pious priest from Ardent City, and a Wizard who hailed from the bountiful lands of Maiden. This unlikely group of heroes met during their travels one day, in Traders Path. Where they were restocking on items they needed for their adventures, while sitting in the Tavern they learned about each other and the many quests and journeys they had each been on. Their skills were impressive and they talked about how their abilities helped them in battle. This group of strangers became friends, and journeyed together for years. The friendships and bonds that were created were strong, almost as strong as the group themselves. But sometimes, not everything is always as it seems…
The Wizard had a secret, that no one knew of. He was in love with the beautiful Warrior. However, the Warrior only had eyes for her Priest, whom she had become rather close with over the years. And the wizard envious and full of rage decided to leave the group in the middle of the night, and go to the Warrior’s homeland, where he cursed the land with a Bitter Chill that caused any who went there to suffer with a movement curse. The beautiful once thriving land was covered in snow, and many of the people who held Glitterspine near to their hearts, fled to the warmer climates of Maiden. The news of this terrible curse reached the ears of our heroic group. And because of the Warrior they decided to go and talk to the people who were still steadfast in Glitterspine, to see what had caused this terrible curse. On the long journey from Forever Tree to Glitterspine, the group had discovered that the name of Glitterspine had been changed by the locals to Shiverspine. On their arrival, they realized that there was no way to navigate the land unless they had a protective layering on their armor. So, they asked around and to their surprise a young man named Jusuf had discovered the perfect way to make such gear. Jusuf was the talented tailor who created Shivergear, to help keep the curse of Bitter Chill from sinking into young heroes. Their task was not done, they needed to figure out what had become of the town, the Warrior had once held near and dear to her heart. When they got to the small town in Shiverspine, they met with an elderly man who had lived there since his youth. He told them of a man he once knew, a man by the name of Villarius the Vast.
“Villarius the Vast, was one of the bravest and noblest of men. He would accept any challenge and would destroy any enemy who stood in his way…” the old man started.
“However, one day while he was hunting a group of bandits in the northern part of Shiverspine, a dreadful snowfall occurred. And he was lost, in the blizzard. A curse came down with the force of a thousand men, that covered the entire land in ice and snow. The once gentle elementals, and the packs of wolfs, became fierce and unruly. Yetis came down from the mountains and made their home here” The old man scoffed, “There was a group who was sent out to look for Villarius, but he was never found”
The group of heroes looked at each other, the Warrior looked at her friends, with tears in her eyes, “We must find him, Villarius was the reason I became an adventurer in the first place, I would sit at the bonfires and listen to his stories when I was just a young girl….” Her voice broke as she choked on her tears. The priest stood up, and raised his weapon, “I swear on King Leo that we will find Villarius”
The old man put his hand on the Priests shoulder with a chuckle, “Son, you will not find him, for he is long gone and no longer the man that we remember”
The group looked at each other and the man in confusion. Leaning on his walking stick the old mage, looking heavy hearted and saddened by his next words said, “Rumors state, that he was taken by the Bitter Chill curse, and now has a hideaway located north of the mountains far beyond the borders of the city, he was given a crest to protect, and only the bravest of warriors would be able to retrieve it from him.”
Later that evening, after a filling meal of Poached Fish, the group of heroes set off for the hideout, that was marked by the old man on their map. They scoured the lands, swam through freezing waters and battled many yetis and undead, until finally, they reached the walls to Villarius’ domain. And to their surprise, there stood The Wizard. Their old friend and partner. The heroes were shocked to see their old friend, standing there as if he were a stranger. For he had grown pale, twisted and dark since the last time they saw him… For the corruption of power had changed him so… With an evil grin towards his dearest friends, he disappeared into thin air. The group looked at each other and trudged onwards through the portal that led them to Villar Summit. As they blinked through the snow that had started to fall, they proceeded with caution up the icy peak, towards the grumbling of a giant undead, Villarius.
They raised their weapons and within the blink of an eye, they attacked this forgotten hero. The whoosh of a bow, the crash of the shield, the glint of magic flew through the air as they battled. Spell incantations rang through the cold chilling air and bounced off the mountain. Echoes of swords clanging together cut the night. And finally, the great Villarius fell to his knees, and presented the heroes with a beautiful Crest, and died.
The heroes were rather beaten and bruised after such a long lengthy battle, that they decided they would use the help of the Old Mage, they met in Shiverspine, to be teleported to the Throne Room of King Leo in Ardent Castle, and let him know what had happened. For the curse could not be lifted, while evil spread across the land. The heroes were welcomed with open arms, by the guards and the Royal Family. A Restorations specialist, Arcron, was sent to research the Crest that had been recovered. And upon looking at the crest, he discovered it was only a fragment, and there were three others that needed to be recovered before he could further decipher what the Crests were used for. King Leo then charged the heroes with hunting down and destroying the other Destructive Elementals in the realm, Karackus a fiery elemental, Ux a ghastly ghost and Headmaster Rotburga, a sorcerer Sindahl. All of whom were bewitched and twisted by the evil powers of The Wizard.
The fear of these destructive elementalists was spread across the realm, and still exsist to this day. And only the heroes who are brave of heart and pure of soul can attempt to battle against these dreaded beings, that continue to bring terror throughout the realm.
Well, i always hear people complain about Shiverspine and i figured i would create something people could enjoy and possibly change what they thought if there was a bit of a backstory with it. Haha, i just took each of the classes and tried to tie it in with the story that we all already know which is evil powers and the evils that are in the realm. would gladly colaborate or help you with any ideas you would like to expand on! Xo