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Prelude To Darkness

Posted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 10:10 pm
by Abyss Ebonmourne
Prelude to darkness:

The crypt was dark, cold and oppressively void of fresh air. The stench of decay long yielded to the fetid balm of ancient dust. Two figures struggle to make their way through the cavernous expanse of entombed remains. A small lantern bobbed and weaved with each wary step taken. The squeaking of it’s handle, whispered prayers and curses the only sounds that stir the ink of the surrounding gloom. The lantern, at long-last finds a place upon a large sarcophagus. The grey marble from which it was carved seems to absorb the light as soapstone takes up water. A voice parts the darkness. “Here it is boy, I told you I would find it!” Another voice, younger and more shrill responds “True to your word master, you have.” Parchment is produced from within a leather pack, a quill and ink are quickly placed beside it on a nearby sepulcher. The youngest of the two men unburdens a large sack from his shoulder and places it on the ground with a resounding clank of metal. “The chisel and hammer boy, quickly now”, the older man gestures excitedly as the boy hurriedly opens the sack and rifles through it’s contents. Soon the boy finds the tools and they are immediately taken by the old man who sets to work as fast as the limits of the faint light from the lantern will allow. Three strikes ring loud, assaulting the solemn hush within the cave of tombs. Small chunks of stone fall to the floor as the old man smiles wide, he can only imagine what treasure lay at the end of his labors. The boy looks on with an impish grin, wringing his hands in eager anticipation.

Suddenly a frigid draft plunges through the caverns, enveloping the two men in shrouds of numbing cold. The light of the lantern goes dim, then flares in a brilliant blue, bathing everything in a soft, sapphire glow. A dark figure with eyes red as hot coals steps forward from amongst a line of vaults and speaks. “What you seek is no longer here. It was taken by one such as yourself. Go now or forfeit your life!” The words splinter the air like cold iron as the old man steps in front of the boy, shielding him from the specter’s wrath. “Please M’lord, we do not come as thieves. I am a scribe and historian, this boy is my apprentice. I have come only to see if legends of a gem of shadow are true. I wish only to sketch it’s likeness and write of it’s existence. I would not take such a treasure, nor divulge it’s location. Only that I would be able to lend authenticity to such a wondrous tale of lore is my intent. A scholarly endeavor, nothing more. Please spare us your dark vengeance.”

The shadowy figure was silent for a moment. It’s eyes seemed to cool as they changed in hue. It spoke, but in a more civil tone than before. “I have listened and looked within your thoughts Lorne Finchridge of Vesper, I know your words to be true. I will spare you and your charge if you will serve me in that which I ask of you.” Lorne could do nothing but nod in acceptance as he listened to the terms of his pardon. “I am Abyss Ebonmourne, and you, like all mortals are no mystery to me. I bind you with three promises in exchange for your life and that of young Jobson, your apprentice. The first, you must never return to this place. The second, you must never reveal the location of these catacombs. The last, you will be indebted to me for one task which you may not refuse. I will ask this of you at the time of my choosing. Do you agree to these things?” The old man shivered, a sudden pale was upon him, he felt clammy and his voice was weak as he answered. “I will do all as you have said M’Lord Abyss, please allow us our lives and be done with us this night so we may see our homes by tomorrow’s light.” Abyss then produced a blackened dagger from a sheath at his side. “Then in blood will you seal this pact”. Lorne took the dagger and with a trembling hand drew it’s blade across the other. Blood began to flow and drip upon the ground. Steam rose from each drop of blood that touched the ground as if the cave itself was appeased by such a rite. “It is done” said Abyss as he returned the dagger to it’s sheath. “Now begone, and never return to this place, or it will be your doom”. He turned and began to fade into the darkness from whence he had come.

“M’Lord”, Lorne called, “May I ask but one question?” Abyss stopped, “if you must ask, then one question shall I answer.” Lorne felt a lump rise in his throat, he could not leave without knowing. “Is it true M’Lord, the gem of shadow, does it indeed exist?” Abyss was still, moments passed until Lorne could bear it no longer. “M’Lord, does in fact the” ,“yes!” Abyss snarled as he violently interjected, “yes, the cursed gem of which you speak exists!” Abyss turned towards Lorne and his young apprentice, walking slowly his eyes glowing brighter with each step. “Do you wish to hear of it?” Abyss spoke in a low, mocking tone. Lorne began to retreat nudging Jobson back as he stumbled over his own feet.

“Sit and I will tell you something that not many have heard or ever will.” Abyss then sat upon the sarcophagus that was the object of Lorne’s quest. The specter’s mood seemed to change as he looked at the two who had disturbed the quiet of Abyss’ necropolis. “I would imagine that you have quite a tale M’Lord and we have many hours until the light of day, please if it pleases you, tell us of this wonder….the gem of shadow.” Abyss shifted his weight to gain a more stoic visage then began. “I will tell of a time long ago when your race was in it’s infancy and evil had a name.”

Re: Prelude To Darkness

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 5:03 pm
by Abyss Ebonmourne
The Devourer:

"So the story begins"

Beyond the memory of your kind, when this ancient world was but a beginning, a great and terrible creature existed. It was unknown to the wisest of men from whence it came, even it‘s own kind could not tell of it‘s origins as the oldest of dragons had no knowledge of the creature‘s history. A colossal, draconian beast that ravaged and consumed all it encountered. Known to this day to be the very first dragon, it was a dreaded entity of darkness and chaos, his power was absolute. In it’s own, demonic language it called itself an abomination that no human tongue could pronounce. It was simply called Vorkryllax the Devourer.

As time passed the realm of men soon rose to prominence over all other inhabitants of the known world. Unto this new era the powers that existed in response to men’s faith allowed such expansion to grow and prosper. Man was soon to be master of his own destiny as his place in the world was all but established beyond all certainty. Vorkryllax awakened from a deep slumber as was not uncommon for his kind to do throughout the great spans of their lifetimes. He took notice of man’s sudden advancements and eminent encroachment, he was displeased. He would not share his kingdom, nor would he allow such an insignificant creature any purchase within his all-encompassing realm. He was above all things, ruled all things, devoured all things, the tribes of man were no different and would be afforded nothing but his fury. He arose from deep within his mountain lair, opened his wings which cast such a shadow upon the land that it appeared as though the sun had been swallowed whole. Vorkryllax was a vision of the darkest night as his immense form claimed the peaks of the highest mountain. He vowed that all that was would be no more and took flight from his perch atop the world.

The city of Alakesh was quiet, the evening had brought with it a prophetic silence as not a breath of wind stirred within the city streets or the outer farming hamlets. The sun had just cast it’s last shadows and the deep violet of night was soon to overtake the burnt amber that was lazily sinking below the horizon. The people of the city were busy with their evening rituals, cooking, cleaning, the chiding of children who retained much of the day’s energetic endeavors, insistent in their refusals of baths and bedtimes. The working men offered up hearty praise of the day’s labors and welcomed the prospect of a restful sleep after a well-deserved mug of ale. The merchants had closed their shops, some headed home with the intent of a good supper and to count the day’s profits, others head to the inns and taverns to spend the same. All unaware of the silent specter of death high above them.

The faint lights of the city could be seen through a bank of clouds that offered Vorkryllax momentary cover. He surveyed the city below then banked right, tucking his wing in allowing gravity and the sudden drag to pull his enormous frame into a piercing dive. It was as if a black mountain had been hurled from the heavens, plummeting straight towards the city of Alakesh. As Vorkryllax reached a height he judged to be advantageous, he let forth a terrible roar that shook all structures within his sight. The people of the city were taken by surprise and had thought a great earthquake was upon them. Buildings heaved and towers swayed as mortar had been loosened by the shockwave. Some took to the streets to avoid potential falling roofs and debris. What they saw as they looked up was terror beyond all that could be conjured from the depths of their darkest nightmares. A soul-gripping chill seized the heart of the city as Vorkryllax ushered forth from the sky. He opened his jaws wide enough to devour half the city and from deep within his serpentine throat erupted an inferno that enveloped great swathes of the settlements of those below, immolating all that it touched. Citizens braced within their homes in hopes they could hide, others tried to escape into the night, most were simply turned to cinders while half the city burned. Vorkryllax roared with great pleasure as he rose high into the sky from his first path of destructive fury. He took care to loiter upon the thermal currents generated from the fires that now consumed much of what once was Akalesh. He smiled, great fangs of pearled venom reflecting the flames below.

Re: Prelude To Darkness

Posted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:17 pm
by Abyss Ebonmourne
Man's Destiny At Hand:

"The Great Battle"

The cries of the people were without measure, their imminent doom at hand. The suffering was so great that the powers borne of their faith could not ignore such horror. Balthavere, power of magic and the elements was the first to act. He spoke and the words echoed with the might of arcane creation, a rift then opened in the fabric of all that was. Vorkryllax, mesmerized and quite self absorbed by his own works of destruction was taken by surprise as he flew directly into the gate that quickly closed behind him. The great serpent was mildly impressed by such a feat and spoke. “Who dares to involve themselves in the affairs of one such as I, speak now and I will make your death a quick but painful exercise!” Within this new realm, outside of time and space the powers appeared before the great dragon.

The first to speak was Valianthos, power of life and light. “It is we who keep you here, the world of men shall not meet it’s end by you.” The second to speak was Ailanna, power of nature. “Wretched creature, of all the beasts I command, you are an abomination, forever beyond my will. I command all of your kind, but you resist me, you are therefore beyond my grace to grant sanctuary. Your sentence to be decided by those who have brought you here.” The last to speak was Mallorion, brother to Valianthos and power of death. “You of all things living and dead, I cannot keep, your soul upon it’s release must be set apart from all that is. For so great is your evil there is no realm of mine that could suffer such corruption.”

“Fools, you know not what you do!! I am beyond all that you represent, my power I have taken and is not by any others that it is so. I am absolute!” Vorkryllax sneered, as he began to circle the four figures who dared entrap him, keen green eyes ablaze with malice, fixated on what he now marked as prey. “You shall not leave this place Vorkryllax, of that we will make sure” Valianthos gripped his lance that at once began to shine brighter than that of the sun, causing the beast’s eyes to shut momentarily to shield them from such brilliance. At that very moment Balthavere raised his staff with both hands above his head and with words like thunder spoke an incantation causing the very air around Vorkryllax to be consumed in blue eldritch flames leaving the great dragon bereft of vital oxygen. The battle had begun.