October 15 2014

The Arena – by Gabriel Nightshadow – narrated by Asclepius

Hello everyone, this is Asclepius, with a great story from Gabriel Nightshadow, entitled

“The Arena”

Background music “Viracocha’s Demise” by Eliot Corley at www.opengameart.org

The Arena

Gabriel Nightshadow stood anxiously in the arena holding area of the Bear Tavern Brawl in Owls Head. Participating in this tournament had originally seemed like a good idea, but now that he got his first glimpse of his opponent, Gabriel was plagued with doubt. A fierce looking, but beautiful, red headed warrior clad in augmented plate, Caska DiFumarate seemed mesmerized as she peered through the gate at the match currently in progress. Suddenly, she turned, smiled at Gabriel, and made a throat cutting gesture! Gabriel gulped.

“You two are next!”, shouted the Battle Master, pointing to Gabriel and Caska. “Follow me!”

The crowds roared as they entered and took their positions by the stone pillars. Gabriel looked up into the stands and was heartened to see two of his good friends, Asclepius and a fellow Outlander who called himself Time Lord, cheering him on. Gabriel had enjoyed great success with using fire, lightning, and blade attacks against the elves roaming the forests near Kingsport and the vicious kobolds which had been launching attacks on Lord Ferig’s battle camp, but a human foe was something quite different.

“Combatants ready?”, asked the Battle Master.

Both Gabriel and Caska nodded to the Battle Master.

“Fight!”, yelled the Battle Master.

Gabriel quickly drew his great sword and ran towards his opponent while attempting to cast Fire Arrow. The spell failed as she ran out of range.

Caska cast Death Bolt. Gabriel tried to dive out of the way, but wasn’t fast enough.

Gabriel felt a bit better after casting Healing Ray. He cast Fireball, but Caska managed to avoid the brunt of the attack and was only slightly singed.

Gabriel finally managed to stun her temporarily with Lightning, but as he ran towards her, Caska drained his health with a Death Touch spell. She used Inner Strength to unleash a barrage of attacks with her Vanduul polearm. Gabriel tried to counter with Double Slash and Rend attacks , but soon felt Death’s cold embrace.

After Gabriel regained consciousness, he congratulated his foe.

“You did pretty well out there for an amateur, Gabriel!”, said Caska. “With a bit more training, you could do well in the Arena.”

“Thank you for your words of encouragement, Caska! I will do as you suggest.”, replied Gabriel. “I hope to test my combat skills against yours again next month!”

Caska bowed and said, “As do I.”

After Gabriel left the arena, he paused for a moment to look up into the dark night sky at the shattered moon, Daedalus. I think I have learned all that I can from the combatants here in Owls Head, he thought to himself. Best to seek further training elsewhere, Gabriel mused, as he stepped through the lunar rift…

Album with EQ - B&A - Stile T as SM

October 15 2014

Elven Gold – by Boomer – narrated by Asclepius

Hello everyone, this is Asclepius, with a great story by Boomer, entitled

“Elven Gold”

Background music “Time Traveler” by Smartsound.

Elven Gold

The tall yellowing grass waved in the breeze, occasionally mimicking the waves on the ocean. With the setting sun at his back, Sebastian crouched low and carefully crested the hill. One of the many elk was prancing nearby and momentarily startled him. The contents of the overturned wagon were strewn along the road below him. An open crate of weapons enticed him the most, but seeing the several Elven guards that were alert and on patrol reminded him about the dangers of this venture.

Each guard’s movements were very predictable. After careful observation, Sebastian saw a window of opportunity that would give him just enough time to sneak closer, make a quick dash, grab a weapon or two, and hightail it back to cover. His escape would be aided by his speed, the dark before moonrise, and Alchemist Julia’s stealth potion.

The plan would have worked admirably had he not dropped a shield while his hands were encumbered with a stolen sword. The clatter drew the attention of every elf in the vicinity. He was partially back up the hill before he noticed that the elf guarding the road between him and the river had abandoned his post and was running to the wagon. With all the speed he could muster, Sebastian dodged to the left and ran for the river. Before he could get there, an elf Mage released a fireball that ignited the grass where he had been a moment before.

Sebastian plunged into the deepest part of the river he could find and half swam, half crawled along the rocky river bottom. The weight of the shield slung on his back kept him submerged like some kind of turtle.

Out of breath, Sebastian finally had to scrabble up the far side of the river bank and pray he would avoid detection. The stealth potion must be working, as no bolt of fire or feathered death found him. He gasped for breath as quietly as possible. In the dim light of the rising, shattered moon, Sebastian could see an elf guard ankle deep in the river, motionless, as if in a trance.

Sebastian crept silently closer, alert for any response. He knew elves were not very smart, but this stillness was ridiculous. Did water immobilize them? Sebastian got closer. No response. Gripping his sword, he thrust it through the hapless elf, then again twice more before the elf fell silently into the water. The elf’s last gesture almost tore out Sebastian’s heart–it raised its hand in a strange pleading manner before expiring into the river.
The elf had indeed carried gold, over 100 gp. He had also carried an additional sword. Sebastian was now a warrior, equipped with shield, sword, and enough gold to buy armor. He also had the new-found knowledge of a weakness in elves that he could exploit.

Album with EQ - B&A - Stile T as SM