AVATAR CHRONICLES I : THE RETURN OF THE AVATAR
On one of the many parallel worlds in the multiverse…
(Insert “Beauty of Chaos” by grindhold and grindhold.de)
Chapter One: Enemies and Allies
Somewhere on the road between Kingsport and Owl’s Head
Five years ago…
It was a warm summer day, and about two dozen members of the Church of Chaos (twelve armed, twelve unarmed) were traveling by horseback from Kingsport to Owl’s Head.
“Be on the lookout, my sisters!”, said the lead rider, Sister Agnes, commander of the Shadow Guard, the military branch of the Church of Chaos, “I have received reports that Dark Elves may be nearby!”
Sister Amber Raine rode alongside Sister Agnes. As her second in command, she was well aware of the dangers they faced passing this close to the forest. Amber’s recently acquired pet wolf, whom she had named Mori Tura, trotted alongside her.
“Sister Agnes, are you sure we brought enough Shadow Guards with us?”, asked Amber.
“You worry too much, Sister Amber Raine!”, replied Sister Agnes, “We can easily handle a group of Dark Elves!”
Amber’s pet wolf, Mori Tura, suddenly came to a halt and started growling loudly. He stared in the direction of the woods.
“What’s wrong, boy?”, asked Amber, “Do you sense danger?”
Suddenly, Amber heard a familiar whizzing sound as an arrow struck Sister Agnes in the heart and she fell from her horse, dead! (Music fades out.)
(Insert “Dream Raid Full Version (Mock Up)” by Matthew Pablo at www.matthewpablo.com)
“Sister Beatrice, you and the rear guard help our unarmed sisters to seek cover!”, yelled Amber, “Everyone else engage the enemy!”
Amber was surprised to see five dozen Dark Elf archers, swordsmen, and mages, come charging out of the woods! Amber and her sisters dismounted and took up positions. Her archers took cover behind some nearby boulders and began firing poison-tipped arrows at the Dark Elf mages who were casting fireballs, while her mages began casting Chaos Bolts at the enemy. Sisters Amber, Melody, and Carlita rushed forward to engage the Dark Elves in hand to hand combat.
Amber used her twin swords to finish off two Dark Elf swordsmen who charged at her, but did not see a third Dark Elf swordsman sneaking up behind her. As he raised his sword and prepared to backstab her, Amber’s wolf leapt into the air, tackled him and ripped out his throat! Amber turned and nodded approvingly.
Sister Amber and her fellow Shadow Guard members put up a good fight, but there were just too many Dark Elves to deal with. One by one, Amber saw the others fall, until she and Sister Melody were the last two Shadow Guard members left standing to defend the nine surviving unarmed Sisters who were hiding behind some nearby boulders. All seemed lost…
Then Amber suddenly felt a sharp pain in her back as three Dark Elf poison-tipped arrows struck her. No problem, thought Amber, my enhanced healing factor should be able to handle this! But something felt wrong this time. Everything went black as she lost consciousness and fell to the ground… (Music fades out.)
(Insert “Flights of Fancy” by Eliot Corley)
When Amber regained consciousness, she found herself lying on a mat in a cave, clad only in her underwear and covered with a blanket. Apparently, someone had removed her armor and put some sort of salve on her wounds and bandaged her up. Her pet wolf, Mori Tura, sat beside her with a somber look on his face. Once he saw that she was conscious, he smiled and bent down to lick her face. Amber patted him on the head as she sat up.
“Ah, you’re finally awake! You were unconscious for about a day.”, said a white-bearded fellow clad in a white robe with black trim. The back of his robe was emblazoned with the image of a black hourglass.
“Thank you for saving me, kind sir! But what of my sisters?” said Amber.
“I’m afraid they were all slain by the Dark Elves.”, said the somber fellow, “You are fortunate that I happened to be riding by after the massacre. Your enhanced immune system couldn’t handle the heavy dose of Badophan poison you received. Badophan poison is extremely rare and is the only type of poison which is fatal to elves. It appears that you were specifically targeted, as I could find no trace of Badophan poison on the arrows which struck two of your fellow Elven sisters. My cure poison and healing spells did not seem to have any effect on you. You seem to have an extremely high natural resistance to magic. Thank heavens my late friend, Christopher Nightshadow, taught me a thing or two about herbal remedies long ago.”
“My sisters were all slain?”, whispered Amber Raine, as her eyes appeared to glaze over, “I have failed in my duty as a member of the Shadow Guard! I should join them in death!”
Amber reached for the dagger she had strapped to her leg, but the old man swatted her hand away with his wooden staff.
“Don’t throw your life away like that!”, admonished the old man, “You did the best you could under the circumstances. You were surprised and seriously outnumbered. There was nothing you could have done to change the outcome. What transpired was meant to be!”
“No, I can’t believe that! Our Lord Chaos would not want his most devoted followers to be slaughtered a bunch of foul creatures!”, exclaimed Amber.
The old man sighed.
“I have seen much during my 5,000 years of existence and can assure you that this was a fixed point in time. Your sisters’ fate was sealed the moment they embarked on this journey. Your destiny lies elsewhere!” said the old man.
“Who are you?” asked a wary Amber.
“My name is Nystal and I am here to help guide you to your proper path, Amber Raine!” replied a smiling Nystal, as his eyes began to glow. (Music fades out.)
(Insert “Liyan” by Elerya)
The Port City of Ardoris
5:00 PM, The Present…
“Keep moving!” barked Amber Raine to her prisoner as they emerged from the lunar rift outside the port city of Ardoris, located at the southeastern tip of Novia. The prisoner’s hands were bound behind his back with Darby style handcuffs. Her pet wolf, Mori Tura, trotted alongside.
(Music fades out.)
(Insert “From Tome to Tome” by Eliot Corley)
The charming and handsome bandit leader, Red Badger, flashed a grin, as he turned to Amber Raine, and said, “It’s not late for you to let me go! I’ll offer you triple whatever your employer is paying you. You know what they’ll do to me if you turn me over. How could you do that to a hero of the common people in good conscience?”
Amber snorted in disgust.
“A hero to the common people?” replied Amber, “I suppose you’re going to say that you’re like Robin Hood, robbing from the rich to give to the poor!”
“Why, of course!” said Red Badger.
“Don’t lie to me!” Amber angrily replied, “I know for a fact that only 10% of your ill-gotten gain goes back to the poor in the form of food or gold. The other 90% you keep for yourself!”
“I have expenses! I have many men to support!”
“Hogwash!”, retorted Amber, “You spend the bulk of the money on wine, women, property, and rare and precious forms of art and literature!”
“I admit I do have an appreciation for the finer things in life.”, said Red Badger, with a devilish grin, “Especially beautiful and strong women, such as yourself! Wouldn’t you like to be my girlfriend, Amber? I could shower you in diamonds and pearls and silk dresses…”
“Shut up!” said Amber, as she punched him in the jaw!
“Ow, that really hurt!” exclaimed Red Badger, as he rubbed his bruised jaw.
“I always honor my commitments! My word is my bond.”, said Amber, as she glared at Red Badger, “I’ll not be bought off with trinkets! Speak of this anymore and I will show you the meaning of real pain!”
Red Badger knew Amber was being serious, so he decided to keep his mouth shut.
(Music fades out.)
(Insert “Asian Duet” by elerya)
As they approached the giant stone archway which marked the entry point to Ardoris, the normally stoic Guard Bob suddenly smiled and waved to Amber.
“Good to see you again, Amber!”, said Guard Bob , “ You’ve been busy I see..”
“Yes, the Mayor will want to see this prisoner right away.”, replied Amber, “He’s the Red Badger!”
“The Red Badger?!”, exclaimed Guard Bob, “We’ve been trying to catch him for the last six months! I am very impressed.”
“Thank you, Bob.”, replied Amber, “Apprehending him wasn’t easy!”
“By the way, I get off in an hour. Mind if I buy you a drink then at The Bear Tavern?”, asked Guard Bob.
“I’ll have to take a rain check.” said Amber, apologetically, “After I drop off this fellow and collect my bounty, I have to get back to Brittany right away!”
“OK, next time then…” said Guard Bob, trying to hide his disappointment.
(Music fades out.)
(Insert “Asian String Suite” by BossLevelVGM)
Amber escorted the prisoner to the front gate of the Mayor’s luxurious mansion, which, like much of Ardoris, had an Asian theme to it. A magnificent white marble water fountain in the form of a globe held in the palm of an enormous hand stood in the front yard. She informed one of the two guards at the front gate who she was and the nature of her business. The guard rushed inside to inform the Mayor and Amber and her prisoner were soon ushered into the Mayor’s back office. The Mayor was seated behind his desk with his back to them, gazing out the window at his well-manicured zen garden. Two armed guards took up positions on either side of the door behind Amber and Red Badger.
“Well done, Amber, you’ve succeeded where my guards have failed!”, said Mayor Stile Teckel, as he turned around in his chair to face them, “So, you’re the notorious Red Badger who has been attacking my trade caravans? You’re a lot smaller than I expected.”
Red Badger started to speak,” Mayor Teckel…”, but the mayor cut him off with a gesture of his hand.
Turning to Amber, Mayor Teckel said, “As soon as I received your message, I sent men to the secret cave hideout which you described. They were able to apprehend a dozen of the Red Badger’s men and recover about half of the stolen loot.”
“Tell me where I can find the rest of your men and the loot and I promise you a swift and merciful death!”, said the Mayor, “Refuse, and I will have my men torture you until you provide us with the information and then you will be drawn and quartered at high noon in the city square!”
“Wait, that’s not necessary!”, said Red Badger, “I have even more valuable information to offer in exchange for my life!”
“What sort of information?”, asked a curious Mayor Teckel.
“It wasn’t by chance that I targeted your trade caravans, Mayor Teckel! I was acting under orders from my boss!”
“Your boss?’, asked Mayor Teckel, “..And who might that be?”
“Duke Garen!”, replied Red Badger.
“What? That’s utter nonsense!”, said Mayor Teckel, “Duke Garen has no quarrel with me and is a highly respected member of the Great Council. He would not be consorting with criminals such as you!”
“I know it’s hard to believe, but it’s true!”, said Red Badger, “Duke Garen is angry for losing the bid on the Nimada casino construction project to you! The potential revenue from the first casino to be constructed in New Britannia will be enormous!”
“Indeed it will be!”, replied Mayor Teckel, “I’ve already entered into negotiations with The Bear Tavern to provide food and beverage services for the new casino, which will be built here in Ardoris. Duke Garen did seem somewhat disappointed in losing that bid. Perhaps you are telling the truth…”
Mayor Teckel stroked his chin as he pondered the validity of Red Badger’s claim.
“I wouldn’t trust a thing this scoundrel says!”, said Amber, “He’s trying to stir up trouble and save his own skin!”
“You have a point, Amber.”, replied Mayor Teckel, “If Red Badger is lying, and I make a move against Duke Garen, that would be disastrous! I would not want someone as rich and powerful as Duke Garen as an enemy!”
“Amber, you doubt my sincerity?”, asked Red Badger, “Well here is a bit of information you might find interesting. Duke Garen has men searching for your old friend, Nystal!”
“Nystal? Why would Duke Garen be interested in Lord British’s former adviser?”, asked Amber.
“I don’t know why he’s interested in Nystal, but I do know that he has dispatched men to every city, town, and village in New Britannia.”, said Red Badger, ”Do you want physical proof? Reach into my vest pocket.”
Amber reached into Red Badger’s vest pocket and pulled out a folded up piece of parchment. Opening it up, she saw a wanted poster of Nystal which had been distributed to all of Duke Garen’s men. The wanted poster instructed his men to apprehend Nystal and bring him back to Duke Garen’s castle just outside Brittany for questioning. Amber showed Mayor Teckel the wanted poster and then folded it up and put it in one of her belt pouches.
“Well, it seems for once you were telling the truth, Red Badger!”, said Amber.
“Guards, take him away and throw him in my private dungeon. I will notify the Shogun Siranto and he will decide what to do with him!”, said Mayor Teckel.
“Hey…”, said Red Badger as the two guards dragged him away.
After they left, Mayor Teckel took a small pouch full of gold coins out of his desk drawer and handed it to Amber.
“Good work, Amber!”, said Mayor Teckel, “I suspect I will be in need of your services again soon!”
“Well you know how to reach me should the need arise!”, replied Amber, “What do you plan to do about Duke Garen? I know you’ve already tied up a significant portion of your assets in the Nimada project. Without sufficient supplies and materials, the project will fail and you will be ruined!”
“I will have to plan my next move carefully.”, said Mayor Teckel, “Duke Garen is not someone to be underestimated. I’ve spent too many years building my business empire to allow it to be brought down by that man. What are your plans, Amber?”
“I have to track down my old friend, Nystal, and warn him of the danger.”, replied Amber.
“Good luck to you!”, said Mayor Teckel, shaking Amber’s hand.
“You too, Mayor!”, said Amber.
Amber turned and left the room. . (Music fades out.)
(Insert “Innocence” by Eliot Corley)
Outside the Mayor’s mansion, Amber found Mori Tura patiently sitting by the front gate. As Amber approached, he got up and they began walking down the street. Suddenly, they spied three teenage boys picking on a young, ten year old girl.
“Please give me back my ball!”, asked the young girl.
“I don’t think so!”, said one of the boys, passing it to one of his friends. The second boy taunted the girl by holding the ball in front of him. As the girl reached for the ball, he suddenly pulled it back beyond her reach and then tossed the ball to a third friend.
The third boy held the ball out, just above the girl’s head. The little girl jumped up to get it, but the boy suddenly held it high above his head, beyond her reach! The little girl jumped up again, but to no avail. The three boys started laughing.
The little girl looked like she was about to cry, when Amber and Mori Tura walked up.
Amber glared at the boys and said, “Give the little girl her ball back!”
Mori Tura started growling.
The three boys suddenly looked very nervous. The third boy handed the ball back to the little girl.
“Now leave! And if I ever catch you bothering this little girl again, you will surely regret it!”, said Amber, as Mori Tura eyes suddenly turned bright red and he bared all of his sharp, pearly white teeth.
“Ah, it’s some sort of demon wolf!”, cried one of the boys. The three boys turned and ran away as fast as they could.
“Good boy!”, said Amber, patting Mori Tura on the head, as his eyes returned to normal and he smiled at the little girl.
The little girl walked up to Mori Tura and began petting him.
“Good wolf!”, she said, “Do you want to be friends?”
Mori Tura nodded.
Amber introduced herself to the little girl.
“Hi, my name is Amber, and this is my pet wolf, Mori Tura.”, said Amber.
“Thank you for helping me, Amber.”, said the little girl, “Those boys were really mean.”
“I don’t think you’ll ever have to worry about them bothering you again.”, replied Amber, “Right, Mori Tura?”
Mori Tura nodded.
“What’s your name?”, asked Amber.
“My name is Chariya.”, said the little girl.
“Chariya? I know someone with that name…”, said Amber. (Music fades out.)
(Insert “Maria’s Theme” by Janne Hanhisuanto)
Amber suddenly remembered that, right after she recovered from the Badophan poison five years ago, Nystal had introduced her to the holographic form of his wife, Chariya. This little girl looks exactly like her, Amber thought to herself. This can’t be a coincidence. I better let Nystal know about this when I find him.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Chariya.”, said Amber, shaking her hand, “Now I think it’s best if you run along home now. I’m sure your parents must be worried.”
“There you are, Chariya!”, shouted a blond-haired, blue-eyed, middle-aged man clad in a knight’s tunic, as he ran over to hug Chariya, “You had me so worried! Never wander off like that when your grandmother falls asleep on the sofa!”
‘But it is so nice and warm and I wanted to play outside with my ball!”, said Chariya, “Three older boys were really mean to me, but this nice lady and her pet wolf scared them away!”
“Thank you for coming to my daughter’s aid!”, said the knight, as he shook Amber’s hand, “I am Sir Charles Campbell, Knight Commander in Lord British’s Royal Army. Ever since my wife, Helen, passed away three years ago, it’s been rather hard keeping an eye on Chariya. My mother is getting very old and I had just sent our servant Niles to the market to fetch some lamb for Chef Robert to prepare some nice lamb stew for dinner. I was tending to our garden out back and didn’t even notice that Chariya had wandered outside.”
“Well, no harm done.”, replied Amber, “But you have to do be more careful, Chariya! Mori Tura and I may not be around the next time you get in trouble. Do you understand?”
“Yes, Amber.”, said Chariya, as she nodded her head, “You and Mori Tura must be hungry. Would you like to join us for dinner?”
“I don’t want to impose…”, said Amber.
“Nonsense, it’s the least I can do!”, replied Sir Charles Campbell, “I won’t take no for an answer!”
“What do you think, Mori Tura?”, asked Amber, turning to her pet wolf, “Should we join Chariya and her father for dinner?”
Mori Tura thought to himself – I really wish I could speak. I hate being trapped in this wolf form. His mind drifted back to the past… (Music fades out.)
(Insert “Soliloquy” by Matthew Pablo at www.matthewpablo.com)
Five and a half years ago…
Castle New Britannia
Samuel was hard at work in his studio in Castle New Britannia completing the painting his liege, Lord British, had commissioned of his lovely wife, Lady Arabella. As he moved his enchanted paintbrush (said to be once owned by the great Italian artist, Caravaggio, an influential figure of the Baroque period) across the canvas, images suddenly appeared, despite the fact that he was not using any paint at all! A few more touches and it was complete. Samuel gazed at the painting. He knew that his liege would be very pleased with it.
Setting down his enchanted paintbrush, he got up and examined the other paintings he had recently completed for his liege, which were leaning against a nearby wall. One was a rather peaceful painting of a warm spring day in the Valley of Fallen Heroes. Taking a closer look at the background, he noticed two odd things which he hadn’t been aware of before. First, that single white dove flying overhead – was it his imagination or was its eye actually glowing? And where did that smiling, purple llama standing atop a nearby hill suddenly come from? Strange indeed… Samuel moved on to the second painting, which depicted Castle New Britannia as it would be viewed from someone standing near the front gate. He suddenly noticed that there appeared to be a light on in one of the upper tower rooms and a figure standing in front of the window. Who was that? Samuel peered closer…he couldn’t make out the person’s face – just, a shadowy, hooded figure pointing a finger – directly at him! This was getting to be too eerie…Samuel moved on to the third and final painting, which was a head shot of a black wolf staring right at the viewer. There was something odd about the eyes. When viewed one way, the eyes appeared yellow, but when viewed from another angle, they appeared to be red!
Since being appointed by Lord British to the position of Royal Artist, Samuel was afforded the privilege of keeping some of his own artwork to decorate his own quarters or to sell as he saw fit. Now it was time to paint something for himself. Samuel picked up a blank canvas and placed it on his second easel. Picking up his enchanted paintbrush, he let his imagination run wild as an image slowly started to form on the blank canvas. When he was done, he gasped. Before him was the face of the most beautiful, red-headed elf he had ever seen! There was a sad look in her eyes, though, that hinted at some hidden pain.
Samuel was suddenly interrupted by the sound of a rather familiar, annoying voice.
“Greetings, Samuel! How are you doing on this fine spring day?”, said Duke Garen, as he entered the studio.
“Just fine, Duke Garen.”, replied Samuel, as he forced himself to smile, “What brings you here today?”
“I was visiting Lord British to discuss some court business. I’m here to offer you a business proposal.”, said a smiling Duke Garen.
“What sort of business proposal?”, asked Samuel.
“I have always been a big fan of your artwork, Samuel. I will pay you double whatever Lord British is currently paying you, along with food and lodging, if you come and work for me instead.”, replied Duke Garen.
“Thank you for the generous offer, Duke Garen, but I must decline.”, said Samuel, “I am quite happy working for Lord British.”
“You are refusing my offer?!”, yelled Duke Garen, “How dare you…”
“I think you should reconsider, or you will surely regret it…”, hissed Duke Garen.
“I don’t take too kindly to threats, Duke Garen.”, replied Samuel, “Furthermore, I don’t think that Lord British would tolerate this sort of behavior either. I…” (Music fades out.)
(Insert “Dark Amulet” by Matthew Pablo)
Suddenly, Samuel found that he could neither move nor speak!
A hooded figure appeared in the doorway and was pointing his finger at Samuel, just like in the painting! The figure pulled down his hood to reveal a Tall Albino Man with red glowing eyes!
“I always get what I want! If I can’t have you, then I will make sure that no one else will either!”, hissed Duke Garen.
Glancing over at the painting of the wolf, Duke Garen suddenly had a wicked smile on his face.
“So you like wolves, Samuel?”, said Duke Garen, “Very well then. A wolf you shall be!”
Duke Garen started casting a spell and Samuel felt himself changing…
A few moments later, he glanced over into the dressing room mirror behind Duke Garen and saw that he was now a black wolf identical to the one in the painting!
“That will teach you for defying me!”, cackled Duke Garen. He nodded to the Tall Albino Man.
The Tall Albino Man smiled and extended his arm, pointing towards the door. In his mind, Samuel could feel, rather than hear, the command “Run away little wolf – far far away!”
Samuel was suddenly no longer paralyzed and was compelled to run out of the studio as fast as his legs could take him. He ran out of the castle, through the streets of Brittany, and into the nearby forest.
After about an hour, he was finally free of the Tall Albino Man’s influence and was able to stop. He was totally exhausted and panting. Samuel looked around. He was deep in the forest and completely lost. Suddenly, he heard the sound of growling behind him. He turned around to find himself facing a giant brown bear! The bear swatted him aside with one of his sharp claws. Samuel landed on his back nearby. He felt the sharp pain from the deep claw marks in his chest and saw the rapidly expanding pool of blood forming on his black fur. The growling bear was rapidly approaching, but Samuel didn’t even have enough strength left to right himself. What a terrible way to die, Samuel thought.
Suddenly, the bear was struck in the chest by three throwing knives and a figure in black suddenly jumped in front of him and finished the bear off with a pair of swords! Everything faded to black as Samuel lost consciousness. (Music fades out.)
(Insert “Path to Lake Land” by Alexandr Zhelanov)
Several hours later, as Samuel slowly regained consciousness and opened his eyes, he realized that his head was lying in someone’s lap. His mysterious savior had apparently bandaged his wounds and was petting him on the head. Stephen looked up and found himself staring into the face of the beautiful, red-headed female elf whom he had painted earlier that day!
“Are you feeling better, boy?”, she asked, in a very soothing voice.
The elf identified herself as Amber Raine, and, turning to Sister Agnes, asked if she could keep the wolf as her own. Sister Agnes initially refused, as pets were forbidden in the church, but Amber was insistent, pointing out that the wolf would surely die if they left him in the wilderness. Seeing Amber’s devotion, and obvious love for the wolf, Sister Agnes interceded with the High Priestess, and Amber was allowed to keep him, on condition that she became totally responsible for his upkeep.
Thank you, Sister Agnes!’, replied a joyful Sister Amber Raine. “I think I will name him Mori Tura!”,
Amber Raine turned to her new pet wolf and said, “Hi, Mori Tura! My name is Amber Raine. I think we’re going to be really good friends!”
Samuel looked up into Amber’s eyes. He had always been popular with the ladies of the court because of his incredible good looks and his position as Royal Artist, but he had never found anyone he wanted to spend the rest of his life with – until now. He found it rather ironic that now that he had found his one true love, he was cursed to be in this wolf form. But, at that very moment, Samuel knew that he would never leave Amber’s side. He hoped that one day he would find a way to break this curse and give her all the love she deserved. Right after he ripped out the throats of that damn Duke Garen and Tall Albino Man!
Back in the present, Mori Tura nodded.
“Well, it’s settled then!”, said Amber, “Mori Tura and I would be happy to join you and Chariya for dinner!”
“Excellent!”, said Sir Charles Campbell, taking hold of Chariya’s right hand., “My home is just down the street.”
Amber and Mori Tura followed the two of them to Sir Charles Campbell’s Founder Knight home near the stone wall marking the edge of the inner city. As they entered the home, Chariya smiled. Amber is such a nice lady, she thought to herself. Perhaps father will like her and she will become my new mommy. (Music fades out.)
The Magasa Forest
5:00 PM, The Present…
(Insert “Battle Theme A” by cynicmusic at www.cynicmusic.com and www.pixelsphere.org)
Theodric had decided to scout ahead of Nystal when suddenly he heard the sounds of men shouting and strange humming and clanking noises. He heard a man shout, ”Hurry, I think he fled this way!”
Soon, Theodric found himself facing fifteen Oracle flies, spiders, and Obsidian soldiers!
“You there!”, yelled one of the soldiers, “Did you see a ranger come this way?”
“No, sir!”, replied Theodric.
This didn’t make any sense at all, Theodric thought to himself. Why would there be some of the Oracle’s droids running around here and allied with her bitter enemies, the Obsidians?
“I see.” , replied the soldier, “Seize that man! We will take him back to the Temple for conversion. He will make a fine addition to our army! All hail the Oracle!”
Two of the other soldiers stepped forward, but Theodric grabbed hold of his long staff and began spinning it around.
Suddenly, one of the soldiers fell back dead, an arrow sticking out of his chest!
“That arrow came from up there!”, shouted the other soldier, pointing to some nearby trees, ”I…” He never got to finish his sentence as he, too, was cut down by another arrow!
One of the Oracle flies fired a laser beam at one of the trees. Theodric heard someone grunt in pain, and a figure fell from one of the nearby trees. The figure quickly rolled on the ground to extinguish the flames coming from his left shoulder and quickly came up on one knee and fired another arrow at the Oracle fly. The Oracle fly exploded into tiny pieces.
“Attack!”, yelled the enemy commander. The remaining soldiers, spiders, and flies surged forward.
A massive Obsidian soldier charged at Theodric. “Those who do not serve the Oracle shall die!”, he yelled, as he swung his sword at Theodric’s head. Theodric easily dodged the attack and knocked him to the ground with a legsweep. He knocked him unconscious with his staff before he had a chance to recover.
The ranger fired three more arrows in rapid succession at their foes, taking out an Oracle fly, an Oracle spider, and an Obsidian soldier. I’ve never seen an archer move that fast before, Theodric thought to himself, as he smashed an Oracle spider into a tree with his long staff.
Thanks to his enhanced sense of hearing, which he had developed during the years he spent immersing himself in the martial arts at the monastery, Theodric heard a humming sound coming from some distance behind him. He quickly turned around and saw an Oracle fly which had flown behind the ranger undetected.
“Look out, behind you!” , yelled Theodric, as he quickly grabbed one of his hunting knives and hurled it at the Oracle fly.
The Oracle fly was impaled against a tree! The ranger nodded to Theodric, then dropped his bow (for he had run out of arrows) and drew his long sword. The two of them stood back to back and quickly dealt with the remaining foes who had surrounded them.
After the last foe had fallen, the ranger shook Theodric’s hand and introduced himself.
“Thanks for the help. I’m Carlin, the Druid Archer.” , said the ranger.
“I’m Theodric. Glad to be of assistance.”, replied Theodric, “Why were those soldiers and droids pursuing you?”
“That was one of the Oracle’s hunting parties which I happened to stumble across.”, replied Carlin, “Although the Dragon Lords helped Lord British and the Avatar defeat the Oracle long ago, some of her droids and neurologically implanted human soldiers still exist and continue to follow their prime directive: seek out humans to convert into Oracle followers. There must be an Oracle temple nearby because I know that the droids have a limited range. You know, I wouldn’t be surprised if remnants of the Obsidian Eye’s forces still exist today as well.”
Meanwhile, a short distance away, Nystal suddenly cried out in pain.
“What’s wrong, my love?”, asked Chariya, as Nystal began clutching his head with both his hands.
“The pain! My head feels like it’s on fire!”, screamed Nystal. (Music fades out.)
(Insert “Invasion” by Eliot Corley)
Nystal suddenly found himself on the astral plane and facing Vastra, who was clad in sexy, green silk lingerie.
“Hello, Nystal. Miss me?”, said Vastra, with an evil grin on her face.
How dare you mentally attack me, you witch!”, roared Nystal.
“Now is that any way to talk to your ex-fiancee?”, replied Vastra, feigning a look of disappointment.
“I won’t fall for your tricks, Vastra!”, said Nystal, “It’s a good thing I figured out before our wedding 2,000 years ago what a lying, scheming witch you truly are! I was a well respected scholar, but that wasn’t enough for you, was it? First you tried to seduce my best friend, Gabriel, and then I caught you in bed with First Consul Lucius Cornelius Cinna on the eve of our wedding! You were just using me as a means to obtain wealth and power!”
“Of course, my dear!”, answered Vastra, “That is what matters most in life!”
“What are you doing in New Britannia anyway?”, asked Nystal, “I have no doubt that you have enchanted some poor noble with your feminine charms!”
“I am here on behalf on my master, Lord Chaos, to give you a warning.”, said Vastra, “ Abandon your quest to find the new Avatar! Let Lord Shadowreign conquer New Britannia and dispose of his brother, Lord British. I understand that, after 200 years, you still have been unable to create a new body for your wife, Chariya. While I don’t know why you would settle for someone who is far less beautiful than I, if you join us, my master will see to it that your wish will be granted!”
Nystal was tempted by Vastra’s offer, but said, “I will never serve Chaos!” “Get out of my sight Vastra, before I do something I regret!” Nystal’s eyes started glowing.
“Don’t say I didn’t want you Nystal”, said Vastra. “You will regret opposing us!”
Vastra’s eyes started glowing, and then another shadowy cloaked figure suddenly appeared beside her. Nystal couldn’t make out his face, but saw his eyes glowed bright red.
The force of their combined mental attack was too much for Nystal.
In the physical world, Nystal lost consciousness and fell to the ground.
(Music fades out.)
(Insert “Medieval” by Miguel Herrero)
Meanwhile, Theodric and Carlin heard some disturbingly familiar sounds. They turned around and found themselves facing another thirty Oracle flies, spiders, and Obsidian soldiers! These Oracle flies and spiders seemed much larger, were jet black in color, and sported razor sharp adamantium mandibles. The Oracle spiders had spider web cannons mounted on their backs.
Carlin muttered, “Damn Oracle droids…”
“HEY! WAKE UP!”, Chariya shouted.
“What?”, said a groggy Nystal, as he regained consciousness , “What happened?”
“You suddenly got dizzy and passed out!”, replied Chariya, “Hurry, you must help Theodric and Carlin before they are captured or killed by the Oracle’s hunting party!”
“No! I will observe and advise, but I will never get directly involved in a conflict ever again!”, said Nystal.
“But if you don’t intervene they will die, or even worse be converted into mindless Oracle drones, like those captured Obsidian soldiers were!”, said Chariya.
“I…can’t…”, said Nystal.
“Why not?’, asked Chariya.
“Because the last time I did…you DIED!”, sobbed Nystal, tears rolling down his cheeks.
Chariya’s holographic form suddenly appeared alongside Nystal and stroked his cheek.
“Oh, my darling, even after all of those years, you still haven’t forgiven yourself for my death, have you?”, said Chariya.
“No, I guess I haven’t . And despite mastering all of the schools of magic over the past 200 years, I still have been unable to create you a new, immortal body! In another 300 years, the cube’s power source will be depleted! ” said Nystal, choking back the tears,
“I know how hard you’ve tried, dear.”, said Chariya, putting her hand on his shoulder, “But even if you fail, 500 years is far longer than the little time we would have had together if I still had my mortal form. Remember that I feel in love with you because you are a good and kind-hearted person, always helping those in need, and striving to do what is right.”
Chariya leaned over and kissed Nystal on the cheek. The spark of energy tingled.
“You’re right, my dear, it is time for me to take action!” said Nystal, as his eyes began to glow.
Despite taking down fifteen of their foes, Theodric and Carlin were now completely surrounded.
“Surrender and you will be spared!,” said the enemy commander.
Carlin spat blood in the enemy commander’s face.
“I would rather die than become a mindless servant of the Oracle!”, shouted Carlin, as he assumed a battle stance with his bloody long sword.
“Very well then, I will grant you your wish,”, replied the enemy commander, “Kill the unbelievers!” (Music fades out.)
(Insert “Almost Out” by HorrorPen)
But before anyone could react, four of the Oracle spiders and four of the Oracle flies were hit by Nystal’s Chain Lightning! Nystal then cast Gust, causing one soldier to smash into a tree. Theodric heard the soldier’s bones break, as he fell to the ground dead. A Stone Fist caught another soldier in the chest, causing him to cough up blood and drop dead.
Two soldiers charged at Nystal with swords drawn from opposite directions. He disarmed them both, and then grabbed both of them by the throat and smashed their skulls together. After dropping their dead bodies, another soldier wielding a battle axe charged straight at Nystal. Nystal dodged his attack and then punched a hole straight through his chest! The stunned soldier looked down at the gaping wound and fell to the ground dead. Nystal hit another soldier in the face with his Flame Fist, decapitating him in the process, and sending the soldier’s flaming head flying! It struck another soldier right in the face, killing him as well!
A few minutes later, he heard Chariya say, “That’s enough, dear. They’ll all dead now.”
Nystal’s eyes stopped glowing and he surveyed the carnage. He had single-handedly wiped out half of the Oracle’s hunting party! Theodric and Carlin stood in awe.
“Thank you for coming to our aid, master!”, said Theodric, “I did not realize how truly powerful you were until now!”
“Good to see you again, old friend!”, said Carlin, shaking Nystal’s hand.
“Carlin, I know you have been busy tracking down that Dark Elf archer, Elirebin Shademaster, but I really need your help.”, said Time Lord, “ Theodric and I are on our way to meet the new Avatar. The fate of New Britannia rests in our hands.”
“Of course, I will help you, Nystal.”, replied Carlin, “I’ve waited many years to avenge the murder of my adoptive parents, but I can be patient a little longer. And how is my Elvish sister, Lanthirthel, progressing in her magical studies?”
“Lord Baldrith tells me that she has mastered Fire Magic and is starting to learn Water Magic.”, replied Nystal, “You really should pay her a visit sometime soon.”
‘No, I don’t want to distract her from her studies…”, said Carlin, “…and her location must continue to remain a secret. Her life remains in danger as long as Elirebin remains free.”
“I know.”, replied Nystal, “Perhaps it is best that you keep your distance from her until Elirebin has been found and dealt with.” (Music fades out.)
(Insert “Red Curtain” by HorrorPen)
Meanwhile, back at the warehouse in Jerahl, Vastra handed drawings of Nystal, Theodric, and Carlin to her young lover, Marius, leader of the Homeguard.
“Make sure that all of our people know that these men are to be taken alive. They have information vital to our cause and must be brought here to headquarters for interrogation!”, said Vastra.
“Of course, my dear!”, replied Marius.
Vastra grabbed Marius and pulled him in close and gave him a passionate kiss.
“I will see you in two weeks.”, said Vastra, in a sexy voice as she whispered in his ear, “I must hurry back to the castle now!”
“I will be counting the days until we are together again!”, said Marius, before departing.
After Marius left, a black cloaked figure emerged from behind a curtain.
The cloaked figure removed his hood, revealing his identity.
“The love struck fool has no idea what’s really going on, does he?”, asked the Tall Albino Man.
“No, he doesn’t.”, replied Vastra, with a smirk on her face, ” I’m always amazed at how easily men are distracted by a beautiful face and body.”
“Indeed, dear sister, no man has ever been able to resist you, except that old fool, Nystal!”, said the Tall Albino Man.
“Yes, I will make sure that he suffers greatly for rejecting me!”, said an angry Vastra, “After he has been both physically and mentally tortured, I will crush that Radozan mind cube with my bare hands in front of Nystal’s eyes and then I will rip his beating heart out of his chest and show it to him as he dies!”
“Well, dear sister, I guess I better make sure never to get on your bad side…”, said the Tall Albino Man.
“Don’t worry, big brother, you know how much I love you!”, said Vastra, as she gave him a big hug, “You’re the only family I have left!”
“Remember, I will always be here for you, little sister!”, replied the Tall Albino Man, as he lovingly stroked Vastra’s hair and deeply inhaled her lavender perfume. She smelled so good, the Tall Albino Man thought to himself. (Music fades out.)
Sir Stile Teckel Presents
The Avatar Chronicle 1 – Return of the Avatar
Directed and Produced by Lord Baldrith
Writer and music supervisor Gabriel Nightshadow
Casting director and court Jester Time Lord
Assistant Casting Director and Director of Public Relations Amber Raine
Cast appearing in this episode:
Amber Raine as Amber Raine and Chariya
Kami as Sister Agnes
Lord Baldrith as Nystal
Asclepius as Red Badger
David Peters as Guard Bob
Sir Stile Teckel as the Mayor of Ardoris
Chips36 as teenage boy
Lacr0bat as Sir Charles Campbell and enemy soldier
Duke Greigor as Duke Garen
Sarg as Marius
Avatar Acid as Theodric
Bryan D Taylor as Enemy Commander
Carlin Archer as Carlin
Majoria70 as Vastra
Trenyc as the Tall Albino Man
And starring Asclepius as the Great Storyweaver
Music Credits for this episode:
“Beauty of Chaos” by grindhold and grindhold.de at www.opengameart.org
“Dream Raid Full Version (Mock Up)” by Matthew Pablo at www.matthewpablo.com
“Flights of Fancy” by Eliot Corley at www.opengameart.org
“Liyan” by Elerya at www.opengameart.org
“From Tome to Tome” by Eliot Corley at www.opengameart.org
“Asian Duet” by elerya at www.opengameart.org
“Asian String Suite” by BossLevelVGM at www.opengameart.org
“Innocence” by Eliot Corley at www.opengameart.org
“Maria’s Theme” by Janne Hanhisuanto at www.opengameart.org
“Soliloquy” by Matthew Pablo at www.matthewpablo.com
“Dark Amulet” by Matthew Pablo at www.matthewpablo.com
“Path to Lake Land” by Alexandr Zhelanov at www.opengameart.org
“Battle Theme A” by cynicmusic at www.cynicmusic.com
“Invasion” by Eliot Corley at www.opengameart.org
“Medieval” by Miguel Herrero at www.jamendo.com
“Almost Out” by HorrorPen at www.opengameart.org
“Red Curtain” by HorrorPen at www.opengameart.org
Stay tuned for the next episode in this enthralling saga!