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Magic, Blood & Gunpowder – A Fantasy RP (Closed/TG Approval)

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Cheye
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Founded: Jun 21, 2014
Capitalist Paradise

Magic, Blood & Gunpowder – A Fantasy RP (Closed/TG Approval)

Postby Cheye » Mon Apr 03, 2017 3:33 pm

Magic, Blood & Gunpowder
A Fantasy RP


“History is a wheel, for the nature of man is fundamentally unchanging. What has happened before will perforce happen again…”

Image
The Siege of Ancelstierre - 3E-1238 - 3E-1288


In the darkest moments of the 3rd Era, life as we know it came under threat. The Dark Prince, Vlad Van Drak, had led his Vampyric Ascendancy on a three century conquest of the known world. Empires were destroyed. Cities were razed. Elves, Dwarves and men were slaughtered in their thousands. As undead hordes poured out in every direction across Minern, only three civilisations were spared.

The Elves of Alainasta had largely retreated to their ancient island homeland long before the undead came to threaten them, the beautiful jewel-cities and outposts that remained on the mainland were raided by Vlad’s minions. Thanks to Elven magics and the power of the Dragon Lords, these cities were saved from total destruction. By and large the Elves escaped the horrors of the third age. They enjoy a cultural renaissance under the watchful gaze of King Orion Nasalain.

The Kingdom of Garniem was also spared, its mysterious mountain-dwelling population, neither man nor beast, having withdrawn from the world at the beginning of the 3rd Era. Safely shutting themselves off behind the Great Gate. Before the Vampyric Ascendancy changed the face of Minern few knew of the true nature of the people of Garniem. Now thanks to Vlad those that still remember are even rarer.

Then there is Golgotha, a monolith among nations, but that was not always the case. At the height of his power Vlad Van Drak had all but wiped the human Empire of the face of the map, only Ancelstierre remained defiant. The 50 Year Siege of Ancelstierre saw many moments that looked to tip the scales in favour of the Dark Prince, but a generation of Golgothans grew up in the literal shadow of death. They developed new technologies, strategies and tactics; guerrilla warfare, gunpowder and new automations meant that by the end of the siege, the Vampires were fighting a very different enemy to those they had previously faced.

It was at Ancelsierre where Vlad Van Drak finally fell. Killed in single combat as his undead legions stormed the walls; it is said that as unlife left him, the sun emerged from the darkened skies above the city for the first time in thirty years. His army crumbled where it stood, his remaining Vampires set upon by new-fangled artillery. The technology used to defeat them would lead to Golgotha becoming the hegemon in this new 4th Era.

The Vampyric Ascendancy did not recover from that defeat and as the heirs to Vlad’s throne took to scheming and infighting, their many enemies reclaimed their lands and took a sweet revenge on the undead, purging the Vampires from society. Now only a scattered few remain, determined to one day restore the undead empire.

Tomorrow marks the 150th Anniversary of Vlad’s defeat. Life in those surviving realms goes on. Even in other parts of the world, new Empires, Kingdoms and Duchies have sprung up, the lesser travelled lands of the Dwarves and Wood Elves are flourishing and mortal men even rule in Carvania, the land that spawned the Ascendancy. Though Golgotha remains a militaristic society, feuding with the lesser Kingdoms of man and the Dwarven realms to their North-West, even they have been blessed with an era of relative peace. The odd Goblin Horde or Undead War Party occasionally marches in from the East but on the whole Minern is prosperous.

The question is, will it last?
___________________________________________________________________________________________

This is a fantasy RP for the nations of Latica, the factions in which have been agreed collaboratively. It is closed, but if you read on, are a semi-skilled RPer and think you'd like to contribute please send one of us a telegram. This thread will not be used for OOC posts.

As an aside this RP may contain some themes that could be considered adult in nature, including mild sexual references, violence and gore. Please go away if such themes might offend you.

The factions:

- The Vampyric Ascendancy - Cheye
- The Second United Empire of Golgotha - Greater Latica
- The Elves of Alainasta - Pageon
- The Kingdom of Garniem - Sarrin
- The Kingdom of Teustengrund - Charlegmagna
- The Greenskin Horde - Revlona
- More to come perhaps?

____________________________________________________________________________________________

A map of Minern:
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Key:
- 01 - The Second United Empire of Golgotha
- 02 - The Independent Principality of Carvania
- 03 - The Elves of Alainasta
- 04 - The Kingdom of Garniem
- 05 - The Templar State of Tharis
- 06 - The Princely State of Medina
- 07 - The Republic of Morthin
- 08 - The Holy State of Mayfair
- 09 - The Kingdom of Itrusk
- 10 - The Sovereign Barony of Morskoi
- 11 - Blackrock
- 12 - The Autonomous Fiefdom of Tarakia
- 13 - The Borderlands of Farvas
- 14 - The Neuhassen Wilds
- 15 - The Oberdon Wilds
- 16 - The Kingdom of Teustengrund
- 17 - The Republic of Mieera
- 18 - The Kingdom of Estraliana
- 19 - The Rogue City of Renej
- 20 - The Dwarvern Mountains
- 21 - The Forest Kingdom of Belabianca
- 22 - The Riverlands of Norvaford
- 23 - The Tabornian Grand Duchy
- 24 - The Duchy of Zavron
- 25 - The Duchy of Rocgaroc
- 26 - The Hinterlands of Larenia
- 27 - The Northern Tundra
- 28 - The Badlands
- 29 - The Jisaran Desert
- 30 - The Great Vasharan Empire
- 31 - The Enclave of Enthrala
- 32 - The Kingdom of Rivièreroux
- 33 - The Republic of Bursa
- 34 - The Angran Satrapy
- 35 - The Saiph Twinned Dominions
- 36 - The Kingdom of Farragas
- 37 - TBC
- 38 - The Republic of Serev
- 39 - The Duchy of Xierine
- 40 - The Duchy of Lavos
- 41 - The Kingdom of Pacifica
- 42 - The Principality of Harmonia
Last edited by Cheye on Fri Jan 26, 2018 4:12 pm, edited 13 times in total.

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Sarrin
Spokesperson
 
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Founded: Dec 21, 2016
Ex-Nation

Postby Sarrin » Mon Apr 03, 2017 4:11 pm

High Peak, Garniem

King Godfrey Brannon scowled as he looked at the reports before him. After 1,429 years in isolation the Kingdom of Garniem had reached a population it would soon be unable to feed. His people who had endured much since their retreat from the world deserved better than starvation. Even with the risks of the world outside world a death by battle was better than hunger. Knowing this he had called a meeting of the Lords Council earlier that day and proposed an end to isolation. This radical policy had only ever once been proposed before, by his father, and was shot down. He however had found support in Jarl Tordrig who had mentored him from a young age thus granting him the power to end the state his people imposed on themselves. He was uncertain why his former tutor had chosen to vote as he had. Perhaps in his old age he simply wished to see an end to isolation or perhaps he truly believed the time had come. Either way he now faced a near impossible decision and every instinct inside him told him this would be a mistake.

As he reflected on the decision he heard a tapping on the window and glanced over to see a familiar looking crow. He stood from his desk and opened the tainted glass to let it in before returning.

As the window opened the crow flew onto the carpet before his desk and began unraveling itself transforming it's very being into that of an old man. The man looked to his king with eager eyes "Is it time?"

"The Lords authorized the power, are your preparations in order?"

"I am ready to travel on your command my liege, I should be able to make every major hold by winter. I must warn you though, there is no certainty they will come"

"You spend to much time outside your mortal form Cormac, you forget man's innate curiosity"

"This is perhaps true but you have not seen the world as I have sire, many resent our kingdom for it's isolation much has occurred in the interregnum"

"You know we couldn't open the gates, not while our people transformed" the King interrupted defensively

"Of course your highness but they cannot know the truth, our people are hunted as monsters out there"

Godfrey stood back up and walked to the window looking out across his land. Garniem was beautiful with fertile fields, swathes of lush forests and rich green grass. He knew that if the outside world learned it's secrets everything could be lost but equally so if they remained it could collapse on itself. He took a deep breath and closed his eyes focusing.

"Issue the order" he said finally "Today we prepare for the new world"
Last edited by Sarrin on Tue Apr 04, 2017 2:15 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Pageon
Envoy
 
Posts: 349
Founded: May 21, 2010
Ex-Nation

Alaina's Rock

Postby Pageon » Tue Apr 04, 2017 2:15 pm

It was a pleasant day at the fort called Alaina's Rock, the elves of Alainasta were milling about following their day to day routines, but the High Lord was moving through the light crowd with determination. An important visitor had come to his fort, one of the remaining defences for Ferosix beyond its island chain border. Alaina's Rock was located off the shores of Carvania, and had been one of the elves only domains to survive the Vampyric Ascendancy due to its protector whose progeny had now returned to see the very land his father had guarded. Dragon Lord Corynx Ferrongard had been bonding and growing with his dragon brother while his father the at the time Dragon Lord Ferrongard of the city of Rennoa. Since the war with the Ascendancy he had stepped down, his dragon aging rapidly due to the magics that keep them at their prime during their time as lords. And Corynx had taken his fathers place, it was more ceremony to the new young, for an elf, lord and since that war Alaina's Rock had always pledged its allegiance to the Dragon Lord of Rennoa.

"My lord Ferrongard it is such a pleasure to meet you, I trust your travel was uneventful" the High Lord spoke with hesitation in his voice, this new lord had already garnered a reputation for being hot-headed on Ferosix.

"Gerrone was swift, but we were waylaid by a human fishing vessel, the poor beings were sinking and so I decided to save them. The ungrateful curs attempted to attack Gerrone even after we saved them. Anyway how is Alaina's Rock? I understand that your people have been growing a new form of crystal, their songs infusing them with enough power to grant light to Rennoa for many nights, merely needing to have a certain tune to be heard to ignite the light inside them or snuff it out" Corynx smiled at the nervous High Lord who he could see was worriedly looking towards his bond brother, Gerrone the Lord Dragon. Motioning to walk with the High Lord back to the lords home, their conversation continued during the walk, till they arrived at the lords smooth white walls of his manor, entering the High Lord bid Corynx to let him deal with the day to day running of his fortress as the Dragon Lord was left to explore the town that supported the elven population on the small isle.

Down in the open courtyard which acted as the center of the town, the elven children had surrounded and were playing with Gerrone, who was passively allowing the children to climb on his back and poke his scales in their curiosity. Dragons were a venerated but also rare species that the elves had long ago bonded with, few elves got the chance to bond with a Dragon, and of those who bonded only 10 at a time reached maturity, running 10 of the 11 major cities on Ferosix. Corynx watched from the sidelines, the peace that had settled on the world allowed for such relaxing times, but the elves of Alainasta knew of many threats to their people. For one no one believed the Vampires to be completely annihilated, they were like a plague. Infectious, and prevalent, they would attempt again at some point and as Corynx knew from his trips to the elven settlements on the mainland and other isles the elven species was not ready for war, they still believed that their magic would save them from every threat. And he knew this had to change, the elven people had to militarize, the humans of Golgotha had proven that magic while powerful and incredibly adaptable, was not the only method of power, their technology had closed the gap between humanity and the elven people rapidly. And the elves survival could no longer be guaranteed by simply staying as they had for the uncounted centuries, they needed to adapt as a culture and people, and they had to learn and grow just as the humans had in these past 150 years.
Allies:Othileon, Greater Latica
Pageon Statistics:
Notable for large advances in technology, and a military with numerous autonomous weapons and drones. The nation is led by Emperor Callum Carmichael and his Arch-Lectors. The nation worships a Pantheon of Gods led by the warrior God Allenstag. The populace of Pageon are highly educated and due to intelligent investments by the government the economy is currently running a surplus, although civil liberties were curbed to aid in this. The people are extremely apathetic and the elected portion of the government is filled mainly by merit over popularity. Pageon's closest ally is Greater Latica despite the divide between economic principles their cultures are similar enough that their populations are able to mix with surprising ease.

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Cheye
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Posts: 302
Founded: Jun 21, 2014
Capitalist Paradise

Postby Cheye » Tue Apr 04, 2017 2:20 pm

Ancelstierre, Golgotha - 3E-1288

Suddenly he was there again. On the field overlooking Ancelstierre. Thunder roared overhead, but it was drowned out by the marching of the undead legions and the banging of the drums, louder still was the irregular thudding of the bone-carved battering ram hitting the city gates.

Eventually the thudding stopped.

The skeletal legions churned forwards into the city proper. Years of relative stalemate had finally come to an end. The Vampires around him let out a patriotic roar, so thrilled were they that in that moment the visage slipped and they were unmasked, the feral beasts within distorting their faces, revealing their carnal nature. He joined them, howling ferociously in anticipation of the glorious slaughter that was to come.

And then it was all over. The thousands of undead warriors that had only moments ago broken in to the city collapsed into a heap of flesh and bone. The banshees and the wraiths faded, the beasts that accompanied them took flight, their master’s ungodly hold over them erased in a split second.
The Vampires around him froze in shock and confusion. What had happened?

And then the fire came…


Ancelstierre, Golgotha - 4E-150

“This one in particular has… great tits.” The Madame said casually.

Jacques de la Grey nodded idly, realising he’d been staring off into space. He looked over the assortment of women lined up around him, his gaze lingering on the youthful blonde the Madame had selected for him. He expressed no outward emotion as he replied; “She’ll do then.”

The Madame clapped, and the remaining girls left the room. As the Madame turned to leave herself she muttered in Jacques’ ear; “We gotta talk when you’re done.”

When he was finally alone with the young woman, he smiled, gracefully walking over to a sideboard on which sat a pitcher of wine and two glasses, he poured them both a drink.

“It’s Franchea’s finest red. Some say, it’s to die for…” He grinned, as she gratefully took the drink.

“I’ve never drunk anything like that before…” She muttered.

“Well if it pleases me girl, you will never again drink anything else.” Jacques grinned, slowly sipping his wine, his hawk-like eyes stayed on her as she tentatively sipped her own glass.

“I’d like that.” She muttered, looking up at him with a suggestive smile...

Smiling, he took her glass from her and placed it back on the side along with his own. Without instruction she began to undress, walking over to the large four-poster bed at the other side of the room. He followed her lead.

An hour later, she was dead.

“You gonna keep killing your own whores?!” Rosalind, the Madame let out as she entered the room, on the bed, the woman’s body lay naked, the colour drained from it, save for two neat red dots on the neck.
Jacques shrugged, “Oh she’ll be fine.” He sighed dismissively, leaning against the sideboard, finishing his wine.

Rosalind shot the corpse a quizzical look before turning to him; “Anyway you’ve got bills to pay, protection money, bribes, stock, booze…” She trailed off as he raised a dismissive hand.

“Please don’t bore me with the details, just tell me how much you need? I’m sure my friends at Court will be happy to pick up the bill once more.” He sneered, an air of self-ordained superiority in his voice.

“I’m only looking out for you, boss.”

“Hardly, you’re looking out for yourself, as is your prerogative of course. Still, you’ll be pleased to know that very soon we will no longer have to pay for such meagre things.”

“You mean?...”

“You know what day it is tomorrow, yes? The whole city is in a frenzy over it?”

“Victory day?” She asked, a lack of understanding clear on her face.

“Indeed, and I have something very special planned to commemorate it.” He grinned wickedly.
As he finished speaking, the young woman on the bed coughed and spluttered. Rosalind looked over at her, her mouth agape in shock, Jacques ignored them, focusing on removing a spec of dirt from his fingernail with a quick flick of his thumb.

“That’s impossible…” Rosalind let out, as the young woman rose from the bed and walked towards them. It was the first time Jacques had seen her lost for words.

“Oh my dear Rosalind haven’t I always told you that nothing in this world is impossible?” He let out whimsically. Before she could reply he snapped his fingers loudly, “Leave us.”

She obliged, hastily backing back out of the room without a second look.

“Now my dear, you’ve tasted Franchea’s finest red, how would you like to try the finest vintage in Golgotha?” He turned to inspect the pale blonde woman, sure enough her eyes had turned a violent blood red and as she opened her mouth to reply he noticed her elongated canines.

“If it… Can quench this strange thirst I feel?” She replied, unsure of her own voice.

“That’s not a thirst girl! That is ‘the hunger’. It will always be a part of you now, but yes… By this time tomorrow you will find it largely sated. Tomorrow you will understand” He chuckled.

Just like the girl-turned-vampire before him, Ancelstierre was also ignorant. And just like her, in a day’s time, they would understand...
Last edited by Cheye on Wed Aug 23, 2017 7:42 am, edited 3 times in total.

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Sarrin
Spokesperson
 
Posts: 138
Founded: Dec 21, 2016
Ex-Nation

Postby Sarrin » Tue Apr 04, 2017 2:36 pm

Gates of Garniem, Galbridge Pass, Garniem

It was a cold day in the Galbridge Pass as the merchants from Morthin approached the Great Gate of Garniem, trailing them where 20 wagons of grain and a handful of guards.

“This is a ruse” Said the tallest member of the delegation a stout bearded man named Jarick

“You’re paranoid” replied a slender tradesman who had been walking alongside him “Cormac was thorough in his negotiations, I believe this may actually be real”

Jarick scoffed as he signalled to the delegation to halt and stared at the enormous gate before him

“We’ve had con artists come to us in the past with these promises. The only difference is the gall to ask us to come this way with so few guards”

“Never before have they born the seal of the Kingdom”

“Would it be so hard to forge? 20 Wagons of grain is a lot of money Morrik, if we were to be ambushed now we would stand no chance”

The slender man hesitated for a moment before speaking and gesturing at the gate

“The gate is manned Jarick, for the first time in over a thousand years the gate is manned. If a truer sign exists that this trade is real I cannot imagine it”
Jarick scoffed again clearly aware of Morrik’s point even if he didn’t want to accept it. He gazed back over his caravan and began counting to make sure everything was in order. The pair had been personally approached by Cormac several months before with the offer of a trade contract with Garniem. After, at time, tense negotiations during the irregular arrivals of Cormac they agreed on a trade of grain for furs though Jarick had never been fully convinced of the deals legitimacy. He turned to Morrik calmly.

“Do you think the druid realised that this deal could make or sink our company?”

“Would he have turned to us if he did? Not that it matters this is an opportunity we couldn’t risk refusing and I’m sure it will come through”

Morrik spoke with an optimism the pair had been missing for many years. The Garnian Trade Company was one of the oldest firms in Morthin having once been the official trading mediator for the Kingdom before isolation. It had fell on hard times since the gates closed however and while often able to revive itself was now facing a very real risk of total collapse.

“What are they waiting for” Jarick demanded impatiently “Can they not see us? We’re 20 wagons long for Faey’s sa-“

As he spoke a beckoning groan echoed through the pass as if an ancient beast had awoken from slumber. Voices began to emerge from the gate shouting at each other commands that were too distant to make out. As the pair braced themselves they heard more banging and groans cry out from the gate.

“I think she heard you” Morrik said chuckling and staring as the ancient landmark awoke like a patient from comatose.

Slowly but surely the Great Gate of Garniem began to open. The enormous blood-oak doors gradually parting towards the caravan revealing a lush green world beyond. As the doors finally came to a close wide open a hunched figure began to approach the caravan. He walked through the gates and out of the utopian backdrop with an excited stride. Indeed his pace was incredible for a man with a walking staff. The pair signalled the caravan to advance meeting the old man in the shadow of the gate.

“Faey honour you Cormac, we were worried you might change your mind”

The old man grinned and looked at the pair

“I promised trade with Garniem and you’re records should remember we are men of our word, I trust you brought the agreed amounts?”

Jarrick nodded before speaking barely hiding his grin

“Aye, it’s all there I’d suggest you count it but with 20 wagons that’d take some time and we’d like to make some distance before nightfall especially with so few guards”

Cormac raised a reassuring hand and looked behind him before smashing the base of his staff against the floor. As he did so 11 wagons emerged from the kingdom layered with thick furs.

“I trust you’re word Jarrick, the Garnian Trade Company was always loyal in the past I doubt you would risk betraying us now. We have the furs you requested and an additional wagons worth in good faith. I am happy if you wish to investigate but I suspect if we have any problems we can address them when we next meet”

“If you trust our word we’ll happily trust yours, when do you next wish to meet?”

Morrik quickly answering before his partner had a chance to speak. Seeing what occurred Jarrick darted a look to Morrik before putting on a smile and nodding to Cormac.

“I cannot say for sure but you will hear from me soon”

As Cormac spoke the wagons from the Gate were put to rest alongside those of the merchants and the grain was begun to be pulled inside. As the labourers passed the tradesman they were distracted from Cormac’s words.

“Your men can carry a wagon each? They must have the strength of ten men!” Jarrick blurted

“We’ve kept the old traditions alive; strength has not been diluted in our people but empowered”

Cormac replied calmly before the last wagon passed him on route to the gates

“Now you must excuse me as I have other business to attend to, Morgath watch over you”

“and Faey you”

Jarrick replied as Cormac turned to return to the gates. The merchants looked to each other grinning knowing full well they had saved there company. They stayed and watched as the Great Gate sealed once more before signalling to leave and moving to the front of the caravan.

“Today’ thought Jarrick “Today we became the Masters of Morthin”

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Greater Latica
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Founded: May 14, 2010
Democratic Socialists

Postby Greater Latica » Wed Apr 05, 2017 8:40 am

Ancelstierre 3E-1288

Thud

The fear hung heavy in the air over the defenders of Ancelstierre, so thick you could almost reach out and touch it.

Thud

The Vampires continued to pound on the massive wooden gates separating Ancelstierre from the outside world, the outside world of death and destruction. The Vampires had laid siege to the capital of Golgotha for over half a century, longer than anyone could remember, and it was a miracle the city had held out for as long as it had.

Thud

Rubble was strewn across the streets, and rough wooden barricades had been erected, a feeble attempt to resist the advancing horde of undeath. Behind the barricades were what remained of the once proud Golgothan Army. The brightly coloured medieval uniforms were long gone after years of conflict, replaced by a more practical drab brown.

Crunch

The doors collapsed and gave way, allowing the undead forces to spill forth onto the streets of Ancelstierrre. The defenders opened fire, the muzzle flashes of their rifles lighting up the street.


Ancelstierre 4E-150

Today is Victory day, the celebration of the defeat of Vampirism and the breaking of the siege of Ancelstierre. Crowds lined the streets of the Golgothan Capital trying to catch a glimpse of the parade, flags hung from buildings and windows, and Phoenix symbols were abundant across the city.

The Golgothan army was the core of the parade, marching from the Fortress gates through the streets of the city to the main square outside of the City Palace, to where the bronze statue of General Cain stood, the man who fought and defeated the Dark Prince in single combat all those years ago. The Alchemists had rigged fireworks up on top of the towers and chimneys that dominated the Ancelstierrian skyline waiting for dusk to fall.

The rumble of drums echoed as the parade began, the thick soled leather boots of the soldiers pounding in rhythm as they made their way through the main street. Led by the colours of the First Empire, that was present at the siege 150 years ago, and served as General Cain’s rallying point during the final battle.
Last edited by Greater Latica on Wed Apr 05, 2017 8:41 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Cheye
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Posts: 302
Founded: Jun 21, 2014
Capitalist Paradise

Postby Cheye » Wed Apr 05, 2017 3:24 pm

Ancelstierre – 4E150

As the sun set, the drums grew louder; the parade advancing towards the square. Jacques de la Grey stood on the roof of the City Palace, overlooking it all, overseeing what would become his masterpiece. To his right, two of his harlots-turned-Vampires stood, their fingers digging in to the arms of a finely dressed man, whose hands and feet were bound, a sack cloth covered his head.

As the soldiers marched into the square below he gracefully stepped up on to the high, ornately carved battlement in front of him, nodding to the girls to drag the prisoner to his feet and bring him over too. He looked down to inspect the troops, not Golgotha’s soldiers, who marched on sporting their vibrant colours, but his own. His harlots, gifted with unlife and elevated above the other girls in his employ, were ready. Sporting hoods to keep the sunlight off their porcelain faces, they were hidden amongst the patriotic crowds. In all there were 150 of them, a number chosen with the express intention of adding to the poetry of what was to come. One for every year since the Vampyric Ascendancy had fallen. All of the girls had been collected over the better part of two years for this very purpose. To inform the people of Golgotha that 150 years ago they had won a battle. Not a war.

As the troops came to a stop, the large square was full of people, around its edges civilians crowded around, all eagerly waiting on the Duke of Ancelstierre to begin the highly-anticipated Victory Day Speech. Jacques watched as there was a somewhat frantic movement around the Imperial box; an ornate marquee erected directly below him. He smiled. The nobles and functionaries had just realised the good Duke wouldn’t be joining them, not in the way they imagined anyway.

There was an awkward silence. As the sun slowly sank behind the far off mountains, darkness crept in. A functionary emerged from the Imperial box, walking out into the square to address the troops in place of Ancelstierre’s Duke. Jacques slowly raised his hands into the air, bringing them together in a loud clap.

Next to him the Vampires hoisted their prisoner up. He tried to shout some inaudible plea for mercy that was muffled by the hood as they launched him into the air with their inhuman strength. He cleared the battlement with ease, the sheer force of their throw carrying him out over the square.

As the functionary reached the foot of the statue of General Cain, he cleared his throat to address the parade. A squelching thud rang out and suddenly the man was knocked to the floor by heavy weight.

The man cried out in shock as he realised what had fallen on him and the crowd gasped, even the neatly regimented soldiers stirring restlessly at the shock of what had happened. As the functionary looked around, struggling to rationalise the fact that he was sitting in a pool of blood and guts, his leg pinned down by the upper half of the Duke of Ancelstierre. He screamed and looked up, the crowd joining him.

Blood dripped from the statue of General Cain. To the distant observers it was obvious that the falling Duke had landed on the head of the statue and split in half. Those closer, seeing the blood run down the side of their immortalised hero gasped and screamed in shock.
Nobody quite knew what to do.

And then the other screams started. Not screams of shock but violent terror. It came from every direction, as Jacques’ Vampires revealed themselves in a blind and violent frenzy, lashing out at the civilians, some with concealed weapons, others unleashed the beasts within.

As the Imperial box was evacuated and the soldiers in the square struggled to rally, not knowing where the bulk of the enemy was concentrated, Jacques clapped again and the fireworks went off. All of them at once, in a cacophony of noise that drowned out the screams of Ancelstierre’s citizens. The sky was lit with a bright blood red light for a long moment, and as it faded, the blood that had been packed into the fireworks fell, raining down on the fleeing people below.

A drop of blood landed near his mouth and Jacques licked it sweetly. Chuckling as he hopped off the battlement, he looked back as he began to hear desperate gunshots. Down in the square he saw his blonde get from last night, running at some soldiers near the Imperial box. She threw a knife straight into the heart of one, and knocked another off his feet as she ploughed into him, pinning him down and biting his neck with a demented hunger. All around the square, the scenes were similar and the civilians fled as above it all the blood rained down.

Grinning at the magnificence of it all, he nodded and the Vampires next to him ran forward and leapt over the battlements, desperate to join the slaughter. He walked away slowly and as the rain of blood finally subsided he departed.

Consumed by the carnage of the massacre below, nobody noticed the lone bat flying off from the roof of the City Palace.

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Sarrin
Spokesperson
 
Posts: 138
Founded: Dec 21, 2016
Ex-Nation

Postby Sarrin » Wed Apr 05, 2017 4:38 pm

High Point, Garniem

“And that my lord is why we must restrict the movement of both our people out and others in”

King Godfrey looked up at Jarl Clew with weary eyes attempted to feign interest. The Jarl had been speaking for 2 hours on the dangers of allowing foreigners into the kingdom and why emigration should be strictly forbidden. He knew the people of Garniem were eager to see the world even though they had never complained of isolation. This wasn’t to say the young Jarl didn’t have a point, Cormac’s reports had hardly pointed to the world appreciating the Garnian isolation or their peoples gift but could he really ask his people to remain in hiding? As he regained himself he realized the Lords Council was waiting on him to speak and he had been idly staring at the Clew.

“You have given me much to think about Jarls but I fear it has been a long day and as such we may resume council tomorrow at first light”

The assembled Jarls gave a respectful bow and began to depart the chamber talking conspicuously among themselves. Remaining in his seat however was Jarl Tordrig who waited as the other Jarls left the room before leaving his chair approaching the weary King.

“I hope you didn’t imagine this would be easy?” the Jarl mused with a slight grin on his face

“Not easy but…not this, we’ve only accepted a wagon of grain and the Lords have already put forward three days of motions. Who knows what will happen when Cormac hands the invitations to our Winter Feast to the rulers of Minern”

King Godfrey stirred himself and stood from the Hunters Throne. The throne was the ancient seat of the Garnian King carved from the local Blood Oak and reinforced with the bones of the dragon Tharamyx whose death spawned the kingdoms creation. He walked passed the Jarl to the center of the ring of the lords’ chairs before turning to face him.

“Did I make the right decision Tordrig?”

The Jarl scratched his beard and looked away for a moment before approaching the King

“Do you want me to answer that as your vassal or your friend?”

“I was hoping as my mentor” the King said with a humility that was often lacking from his public appearances. Tordrig chuckled at the statement and put a hand on Godfrey shoulder

“As a mentor I would congratulate you on making a decision every King has struggled on for the past 600 years. Garniem has needed to open its gate for centuries and now we have there will no doubt be obstacles but we will do as we always have and overcome”

Godfrey looked into Tordrig’s eyes and smiled patting his hand as a student to a teacher

“and if the world rejects us and we are forced into war?”

“Then we will fight or if need be close our gates once more”

The pair paused on the Jarls remark allowing the wisdom to sink in. Godfrey stepped away from the Jarl and into the Lords Chair he would have held had his father not died when he was so young. Having been thrust into the throne at the age of 14 Godfrey had never gained experience ruling over a jarldom before being given total authority as was tradition in the Kingdom. He had taken the challenge on headfirst of course and proven himself time again to his vassals who know swore to him with more loyalty than even his father had experienced.

“Do you remember when you were a child and I first took you to this chamber?” The King looked at Tordrig about to answer before realizing the question was rhetorical

“You were 10 and told me that you were going to be the greatest King we had ever known”

“and you asked if that included my fa-“ Godfrey paused for a moment “father and I told you that even his legacy would be surpassed by the glory I brought us”.

Tordrig smiled and stepped back allowing his shadow to leave the detailed map of Garniem painted onto the center of the floor.

“And for 50 years you have led us into a new era of enlightenment and gained Morgath’s favour time and again. This kingdom is in your debt but it is time our people were allowed beyond its walls”

“So you think I should commit to the end of our isolation entirely?” Godfrey asked with genuine curiosity in his voice

“I think you didn’t come this far just to trade for grain” the Jarl promptly responded. As he looked at the King he saw his answer had not satisfied his curiosity and smirked

“and I think if you asked our people to remain hidden you would be betraying yourself. There are dangers in this world but we have always faced them and if the world seeks to wage war on us they will find we are more than ready”

Godfrey listened intently still remaining silent and looking to the map of his Kingdom. After a few minutes of silence he looked back up to Tordrig

“You’ve given me much to think on Tordrig and I appreciate your mentoring even to this day but I think I must think on this alone and the hunger in your eyes tells me you wish to hunt”

Tordrig nodded his head and smiled

“So long as Morgath grants I breath I shall be here to offer you my council my King, Morgath watch over you”

“and you” the King replied as Tordrig left the council chambers leaving the King to reflect. Many years ago a map had existed of all of Minern above them but the paint had begun to worn after centuries of neglect. With little knowledge of the outside world the Kings had allowed it to wither believing one day it would be restored with the new world, indeed such had always been a task of great honour. Now however the duty had landed on Godfrey and he was not sure if he was ready. What if Golgotha was hostile and distrustful? What if Medina developed a new plague? What if the ‘Templars’ discovered his peoples secret? After 50 years of ruling Godfrey’s greatest threat had been Orcish hordes and despite their training he worried Garnian’s would not be able to rival the other nations. Godfrey sighed leaning his head back and shutting his eyes for a moment before thoughts of the hunt and wild beasts began to race through his mind “Time to feed” he thought.

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Cheye
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Capitalist Paradise

Postby Cheye » Thu Apr 06, 2017 1:03 pm

Syliv, Carvania – 4E-150

“It’s still very dark, isn’t it?!” Amelia Van Der Barr questioned, the annoyance clear in her tone.

“Well blame the damn Van Draks!” Her father shot back at her from the other side of the throne-room, where all manner of workmen hurried about, tending to the renovations.

The Van Der Barr family were Carvania’s regents, the first mortal rulers of the accursed Principality in over four centuries. Francis, the head of the family, had inherited the throne from his grandfather, whose own father had been crowned Prince by Golgotha’s Emperor when the Golgothan army finally pulled out of the region some seventy years ago.

The Golgothans who had maintained direct martial control of the territory for the better part of half a century had left, claiming that their work; hunting down the remaining Vampires, was done. Really the truth was that holding the territory meant investing in it, and after centuries under the Vampyric Ascendancy the mortal men and women of Carvania required more investment than Golgotha could ever spare. Their troops living in fetid conditions alongside rampant poverty, an inhospitable landscape and regular natural disasters meant it was only ever a matter of time before Golgotha got bored.

It had been the Van Der Barr’s who had been given the great misfortune of having to piece the land back together; if they succeeded the Principality would be welcomed into the Golgtohan Empire and their names would be immortalised, if they failed… Well they never liked to think about that. Especially Francis, who now watched his daughter crossing the throne room towards him with a tired look on his face.

The banging of the workmen around them seemed to quieten as Amelia approached. Francis looked her over with a smile, he was proud of his daughter, she had grown into an intelligent, if passionate young woman.

“Why go to all the effort of redecorating if you know it’s never going to brighten up?” She asked him, her voice stern but hushed so the workmen couldn’t hear.

Francis sighed. “We’re going to be spending a lot more time in Syliv from now on.”

“Why?”

“Imperial business…” He retorted, though he added, softly; “We would do well to be seen amongst our people. Spending too much time in Golgotha as my grandfather and his father did will perpetuate feelings of discontent.”

“Can’t we rule from Val Lyonesse? It's so much prettier than Syliv, not to mention it’s a bigger castle…” She protested.

“Bigger it may be, but the people of Carvania would be just as irritated being ruled from Franchea as they would Golgotha itself. Franchea was incorporated into Carvania after all, not the other way around.”

“By a mad undead hell-spawn. Not by us, have some ambition father, we could do things differently?!” She urged him, though the fire died in her eyes when she looked into his and saw the resolute stare he gave her.

“It has to be this way Amelia, I’m sorry.” There was a muffled cough from someone nearby and the pair turned to see the Court Wizard approaching from the shadowy anti-chamber to their right. “Yes, Wilhelm?”

“My Prince.” The tall, bald man said flatly, bowing low, “I have news about the artefacts we found buried under the throne-room.”

Amelia looked at the wizard, she didn’t trust Wilhelm one bit, he was like no other magic user she’d ever met; neither a wise teacher nor a humble healer, the only personality she ever saw him display came in the form of obedient, if often angry, toadyism.

“And?” Francis said, taking a step towards the taller man.

“Apart from the sword which appears to contain a common protective ward, the rest of them contain no magical properties.”

“A pity.” Prince Francis grunted. They had discovered the stash of artefacts when they had begun the latest round of renovations.

“I will see that they are taken care of.” Wilhelm said, without so much as a look to Amelia as Prince Francis dismissed him and he turned on his heel to leave.

She watched him go with a suspicious scowl...
____________________________________________________________________________________________

As Vaas Van Drak slinked back to his chambers, he smiled at how easily it had been to dupe the aging Prince. Blood-Baron; the sword of Cassius Van Drak, his oldest blood-brother who had once sat at Vlad’s side as Protector of Syliv, was now his for the taking.

As Vaas shut the door behind him he began to imagine how it would feel to sink the blade through the old Prince’s heart and bleed him dry. The brat girl too. He would feed on her when the time came. The best part was that nobody suspected ‘Wilhelm’ of anything more than having a temper. He had played his part beautifully.

As the image of their lifeless corpses flashed through his imagination, he decided he would take a quick trip down to the dungeons to feed…
Last edited by Cheye on Thu Apr 06, 2017 1:08 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Democratic Socialists

Postby Greater Latica » Sat Apr 08, 2017 9:21 am

Ancelstierre 4E-150

The cobbled streets of the old city flowed thick with blood as the Vampires began their murderous rampage, killing indiscriminately. The Royal Marquee had caught fire, and the Vampires had ploughed into the crowd, causing untold fear and devastation. Some had attacked the soldiers in the parade, catching them off guard.

Through the screams and carnage came the sounds of bugles, trying to rally the Golgothan army into order into a defence. The Golgothan army formed into their characteristic static formations, trying to face off against the Vampires in line, forming row upon row of bayonets and spear points. Without ammunition, the Golgothan rifles were of little use as anything more than polearms, but still the Golgothans stood firm, bracing to receive the charge, as the attentions of the Vampires turned towards them, and away from the fleeing crowds.

Charging forwards, the Vampires were undeterred by this mass of blades, shrugging off wounds that would have slain mortal men. They leapt into the fray and tore into the soldiers with reckless abandon and little concern for their own bodies. Their blades and claws cleaved wide bloody arcs, dismembering Golgothan soldiers with little resistance. Even the heavy halberds struggled to cause any crippling injuries that could stop a Vampire in their tracks for long.

The casualties began to mount up rapidly, causing gaps to appear in the line. Bodies, broken spears and discarded rifles littered the parade square. The Royal Marquee was in threads, thick black smoke clouds climbed into the sky, plunging the city into darkness, lit only by the burning towers and scattered fires. The line began to falter, in the face of the seemingly unstoppable violent Vampire onslaught.

Golgothan reinforcements stormed into the parade square, reinforcing the beleaguered troops. The City Garrison approached the square from both sides surrounding the Vampires within. Swiftly forming lines, they volley fired their rifles into the attackers, firing and advancing, attempting to contain the Vampires into the centre of the square. Although a rifle shot couldn’t kill them outright, like it would a human, but repeated volley fire could overwhelm their rapid healing, and knock them down. However the remains still needed to be burnt to destroy them permanently. The Golgothans brought up their heavy weapons, a battery of large calibre infantry mortars. They fired, their shells arcing high up into the air and raining burning quick lime onto the square, trapping the Vampires behind clouds of flaming toxic dust. A machine gun team had set up their weapon, and began to rake the nearby government buildings with gun fire, trying to flush out the Vampires within, some of which had rifles and bows and were shooting down into the square.

In spite of this the Vampires continued the slaughter, some holding the advancing lines at bay, some trying to kill any civilians to be trapped in the square, others were rampaging through the civil service buildings that bordered the square. The bugles sounded again, this time being answered by the shriek of a steam whistle, and the ominous form of a Goliath Steam walker emerging from the smoke. The roar of exhausted steam was deafening as the walker strode forwards, its massive size causing the ground to tremble with every step. The Goliath closed in on the remaining vampires, firing its own weapons, one of its howitzer rounds blew out the front of the civil service headquarters, blasting a number of vampires to pieces, the power of the explosive overwhelming their regeneration. There was the sound of scraping metal as its steam claws lurched into action, grabbing its opponents and slamming them into the buildings, incapacitating them with remarkable ease. The walker powered its way on, using its arms and jets of steam to eliminate the remaining vampires.

Once it had finished its trail of destruction, the infantry advanced, and as directed by the officers dragged the bodies of the Vampires into a pile before putting them to the torch. Although Golgotha for a long time had believed Vampires to be completely extinct, it was still common knowledge that fire was the best way to destroy them. Some of the more intact ‘bodies’ were restrained by bundles of thick gauge wire and chains, awaiting collection by the secretive order of witch hunters.
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Sarrin
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Ex-Nation

Postby Sarrin » Sun Apr 09, 2017 3:08 am

Castle of Tharis, Templar State of Tharis

High Inquisitor Argus sat in his office quietly reading the reports of the weeks that had come. Since ascending to his post 8 years ago he had instrumented a total reconstruction of his department increasing both efficiency and brutality in equal measure. Unlike many of the Templars ranks Argus had been personally sought out by the Grand Master for his work as a witch hunter in Carvania. As a wandering hunter he had rounded up the lycanthropic and Vampyric cults in the area and slaughtered them in masses. He was so meticulous in his hatred that he was known to torture the beasts for months at a time to extract every drop of information from them often flaying the wolves to make coats for the villagers. Indeed the High Inquisitor was the ideal candidate for the Templars Inquisitorial division ruthless and focused on detail he would go to any means to pursue his goals.

Suddenly a knock came on his door and Grand Master Masiar entered. The Grand Master was an enormous man wearing solid gold plate taken from the castle’s armoury and holstering an enormous great sword gifted to him by the bootlicking patricians of Medina. The blade itself was highly impressive having been forged by a master craftsman and embezzled with jewels in the hilt. The gift however received little praised from the Grand Master who considered himself above such frivolous affairs.

“Argus, how fair your investigations? I noticed you were absent from the council meeting this morning” boomed Masiar as he strode into the center of the room
Argus looked up from his desk clearly unnerved by the towering figure before him. Argus was a slender man more agile and cunning than strong and particularly so in recent years where he could send agents to do his collections.

“Yes Grand Master…I was working on a project regarding the lycanthrope problem” he gestured to the diagram of a werewolf’s anatomy on the wall before him. Around it were various reports of isolated lycanthropic sightings and attacks that seemed to follow no clear pattern.

“I have been following the movements of this Garnian ambassador for the last four months and found hints of a pattern. Indeed I believe he may be the alpha of the pack we found in Morthin not so long ago”

The Grandmaster looked at him with pride and zeal

“I can always count on you to find these patterns Argus. Do you have a plan to take him in? I doubt the Garnian’s would make a fuss given they’ve been isolated for so long”

Argus looked carefully at the man as if uncertain whether to speak “Have you not heard Grand Master? The Great Gate has been opened to two tradesman”

Maisar froze for a moment his face confused with disbelief before realising the High Inquisitor was not playing games with him

“Then we must bring the tradesman in and question them, if the ambassador is infected it may show truth to the rumours that circulated that forgotten realm”

“I have already made arrangements and my agents shall be dispatched this morning”

Maisar smiled and firmly rested his hand on Argus’ shoulder before speaking

“This is why I sought you out my friend, you’re loyalty to our cause is only toppled by my own. There is no other I would trust, in fact while I ha-“
As he spoke a squire collapsed through the door staring at the Grand Master

“Grand Master…grave news….vampires…Golgotha” he spurted out clearly out of breath having ran from the raven nests.

With reflexes surpassing a man of his stature the Grand Master stood and turned shooting quick look to Argus before locking eyes with the boy but before he could speak Argus reacted

“Grand Master take this squire and get the story, I’ll make contact with my agents and we can meet this evening in council”

The Grand Master nodded and lifted the squire from the floor pulling him to his feet as he walked down the corridor being debriefed. Argus let out a breath of relief as the Grand Master left and walked to the thick wooden door to his office shutting it and drawing the strong iron lock. Before the castle was taken over it had been used by Vampires to store thralls for feeding and as such the rooms were soundproofed to stop the persistent wails.

Argus then checked the windows confirming they were locked tight before pulling the windows to fill the room with darkness. He then approached his desk and took a key from his robes pocket which he then used to unlock a hidden compartment and withdraw an ancient bone dagger meticulously carved to maximize blood flow from the unfortunate victim.

Argus smiled at the sight of his dagger remembering it and his given duty with fresh vision. He had been waiting for a sign from his lord for some time and this marked the beginning of all that he had been preparing for. He then walked to the center of the room and dropped to his knees resting the dagger on the floor before him. He shut his eyes and looked up to the ceiling, opening his arms in supplication.

“Oh Isillion, lord of the night, hear my call in the void for the time has come and the signal been shown. Your champions have spilled the blood of the innocent on the streets of Ancelstierre thus marking the beginning of the new age and soon I shall commit injustice in your name. Hear me as I dedicate to you the sins I have committed already”

As Argus began to recant to the Haggard Man the Templars outside scrambled in response to the news from Ancelstierre. Little did they know the very plague they worked so hard to exterminate was festering within their very walls.

Komovi County, Carvania – 4E-0135

Argus walked through the lycanthropes house blade drawn and looking for secret nooks and crannies. Since the discovery in Morthin lycanthropes packs had been popping up across the world having grown in the shadow of the Vampyric wars. He knew the beasts lived in packs and wouldn’t be this far out into the swamp alone but the secret way had eluded him. In the center of the room the alpha wolf lied outstretched and next to him a junior witch hunter that had joined Argus. As he looked at the bodies he let out a slight chuckle recalling the horror on the junior’s face as Argus plunged his sword into the young man’s back. Like every other before him they hadn’t doubted Argus’ loyalty to the cause for a second.

Suddenly he heard it. A shuffle in the corner of the room. He ran over and flipped the bed tossing aside the loose fabrics under it to reveal a trap door.
The witch hunter dropped a lit torch down revealing three huddled bodies. Children.

“Please sir, we only wanted to survive” the eldest cried hardly older than 13. Argus smiled, his master admired cruelty above all else, doing that which the girl had pleaded against. Before the bodies were even cold, he entered the pose of worship and called out to the void

“Oh Isillion, bringer of chaos, hear my call in the void”

As he spoke a noise emanated from behind him

“Yes, my disciple.”

Argus froze about to turn when the voice spoke again

“No, you will not look upon my form, not until you have proven yourself.”

The voice spoke with a refinement Argus had not expected but within it were layers of cruelty and intrigue. Had Isillion truly come to him? Before he was ready to respond the voice spoke again.

“I have enjoyed watching your progress. Infiltrating the witch hunters’ guild and killing off their agents was ingenious. The trouble is… You lack ambition.”

Argus gulped, he knew that those who displeased Isillion were made his blind eunuch slaves in the great void. The voice however, as if sensing his fear, spoke again.

“Do not fear, my disciple, you have not earned my ire. I have a task for you if you truly wish to prove yourself to me. You will soon be visited by the Grand Master of the Knights Templar who will ask you to join him, you will agree. You are to infiltrate their ranks, place agents in every cranny of their precious organisation. Eventually you will dismantle their organization using them to bring the very chaos that inspired their birth back into the world. Have every part of this put in place by Victory Day, 4E-150, and you will truly earn my undying favour.”

“Your will is my command, my lord”

The voice laughed gently.

“Of course, now tell me of your trespasses and crimes against the mortals, I would love to hear of the deeds you have committed in my name.”

Argus began decanting all that he had done, not once turning to the voice behind him. As he finished he at last addressed it.

“Does this please you, my lord?”

Silence. As mysteriously as it had appeared his master had disappeared and as he turned to look in the direction it had come from, he saw nothing but a single bone dagger sitting on the floor, bearing the mark of the Haggard Man…

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Cheye
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Capitalist Paradise

Postby Cheye » Sun Apr 09, 2017 12:13 pm

Syliv, Carvania – 4E150

Vaas Van Drak raised a curious eyebrow at the piece of paper he had taken from the raven and reread it once again:

Vampires.
Ancelstierre – Victory Day parade.
Duke assassinated, civilian casualties astronomical.
Secure Carvanian border.


He found himself feeling very conflicted at this news.

On the one hand it meant that one of the Golgotha-based pure-bloods had put the fear of his kind back into the mortals and that soon they would be ready to reclaim their lost dominions. On the other, it would no doubt lead to greater suspicion of everyone at Court here in Carvania and make it harder for him to bide his time and wait for the opportune moment to strike against the Van Der Barrs.

As he edged forward into the throne room, he also considered that the timing of the strike, on Victory Day of all days, it was almost poetic. Now that indicated that this had been pre-planned, extensively. That thought troubled him. If a pure-blood in Golgotha was scheming, he knew nothing about it. That offended his pride, he was the last surviving heir to Vlad Van Drak; the Vampyric Ascendancy, scattered and crumbling though it may be, was his to command.

“I don’t believe in curses, Josef, such magical superstition was expunged from here when the Vampires died.” Prince Francis scoffed from the newly installed gold throne at the end of the room. Vaas had make himself scarce the day that chair had arrived from Ancelstierre. The removal and subsequent destruction of the old, black, winged throne that had been the seat of power in the days of the old Ascendancy had driven him into a blind rage.

“I’m not an idiot, father… I just think it’s worth avoiding the lower levels of the castle until Wilhelm takes some Witch Hunters down there to make sure they’re secure.” The young man standing near the throne retorted. He was Josef Van Der Barr, the golden haired, handsome and utterly useless firstborn son of the Prince.

“Your protestations have been noted, son.” Francis replied with a haggard sigh.

It was interesting, Vaas thought, for it to be Josef talking sense, as opposed to his worldlier father. Vaas knew from memory that the catacombs beneath Syliv Castle were vast. So vast that when the Golgothan Army had ransacked them at the beginning of the 4th Era, they had barely explored a tenth of them.

“Speak of the devil.” Francis nodded to ‘Wilhelm’ as he approached.

Vaas stepped up next to Josef, “My Prince, I bring grave news from Ancelstierre.” He let out, after a slight bow.

Both men looked at him.

“It appears that Vampires have attacked the city from within.”

There was a stunned silence.

Vaas continued, “During the Victory Day celebrations the Duke of Ancelstierre was killed and in the chaos Vampires set upon scores of civilians.” He said slowly, gauging their reactions.

Prince Francis hid his face in his hand as he prayed to the Holy Flame for the dead.

It was Josef who looked at Vaas and asked; “What does this mean?”

“You are asked to secure the border with Golgotha immediately, I would not be surprised if the Golgothans suspect the attackers of having hailed from this land, though it is too early to predict how they will react for sure.”

“We must write to them at once!” Francis ordered, rising from the throne, his voice impassioned. “We must offer them our condolences, assure them of our loyalty and promise them that not only will the border be secured, but we will restart the purges if we have to! I will not rest until every Vampire is dead!”

“Is that wise, my Prince? Actively routing out Vampires will surely unnerve the population? It will cause panic and distress… That is the opposite of what you set you to achieve here, no?” Vaas cautioned a little desperately.

“Wilhelm, this is not a negotiation! You have your orders.” Francis commanded, and Vaas realised it would not be wise to press any further.

As Vaas slinked away, seething with anger, Josef said nothing, he merely lowered his head and let out a long sigh. With friends and family in Ancelstierre the news undoubtedly troubled the Van Der Barrs. For Vaas, it could potentially be his death.

____________________________________________________________________________________________

As he arrived back to his quarters after delivering the Prince’s orders to the Steward, he hissed with rage. The Steward, a pathetic little mortal whom Vaas personally detested, had been jubilant at the news that Prince Francis might restart the purges. It was all Vaas could do not to rip the man’s throat out then and there. There was nothing more insulting to Vaas than a weak man coveting violence.

Walking over to a basin, he reached for a dagger on the sideboard and quickly plunged it into his wrist. The cut would have quickly bled and killed a mortal man but for Vaas it was but a scratch, he kept the wound open, running the blade back and forth, up and down his vein as the blacky-red blood poured out into the basin, once it was full he stopped and put the dagger down. His wound healed in seconds as he began muttering some ancient words before igniting the pool of blood with a fireball.

Vaas stepped back as it burned vibrantly, the fire reacting with the cursed blood to throw a sheet of flame up that stretched from the basin to the ceiling, he muttered some further incantation and it died a little. Concentrating on the fire in front of him, he stared into it. It was so deadly, truly it was the only thing that could really kill him. Perhaps that was why it held the secret to the ancient pure-blood ritual.

Slowly, as he stared he began to see faces in the flames. First one, then two or three, then they came quicker, each pureblood feeling the magical call he had sent out by burning his blood in the old ritual. Vlad Van Drak had held entire war councils using this magic. Vaas had similar motives as more faces appeared in the flickering light.

“We must gather…” He barked into the flames, and a heady rush of power consumed him. Hundreds of tiny faces now looked up to him and one by one they started nodding in agreement...
Last edited by Cheye on Sun Apr 09, 2017 12:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Greater Latica
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Postby Greater Latica » Wed Apr 12, 2017 10:15 am

Tabekcelstierre 4E-150
Imperial Summer Estate
Emergency Convergence of Electors


“This cannot be ignored! An attack of this magnitude cannot go unpunished!” Prince Marius of Reiklstierre shouted, “Carvania has always been the ancestral home of these creatures. They’ve been given far too much autonomy; it was a mistake to withdraw the garrison from there in the first place. We must strike them in their heartlands, like we did before!”

“There’s no need to jump to such rash action, we have no evidence that Carvania has had anything to do with this attack, it could cause a war we do not need!” Prince Kurt of Nordstierre retorted, “You younger Princes are always so headstrong.”

“Headstrong? What has to happen to spur you and your decrepit frame into action? How long is it until the attack again? We do not have to time to stand around waiting for your committees and investigations! We need to act now!”

“I do not doubt that we need to act, but we need to act in the right way, their plan was carefully thought out and so should ours. Rational thought is what separates us from the animals and barbarians!”

“I agree, we need to think this through, these Vampires could have come from anywhere, we’ve believed them to be extinct for the best part of half a century and then they come from nowhere and murder an elector! Who knows where they could be hiding, perhaps even under our very noses…” Prince Leopold of Averstierre trailed off, as he and the rest of the present electors realised the connotations of his words.

There was a flurry of activity from the electors, as each sought to show their mark of allegiance. Every elector, whether Prince, Duke, Count, Earl, Baron, or even the Emperor himself, upon taking their oath received a brand of the Imperial crest, some had it on their chest, others on their arms or hands, the Prince of Tabekcelstierre had his brand on his left cheek. These brands were to demonstrate their commitment in service to the Empire, but more importantly it served to prove the elector was not a Vampire. Electors would also voluntarily have additional brands done, to carry favour and further prove their own loyalty, over time this had become so accepted that to have fewer brands would be to court suspicion.

The attack, particularly the death of the Duke of Ancelstierre, one of their number, had clearly shaken the electors. The threat that almost anyone could be a Vampire was terrifying, that only a handful of them had wiped out huge numbers of civilians and had done crippling damage to several infantry companies, what would happen if they were able to muster in the great numbers that toppled the First Golgothan Empire?

“What about the Witch Hunters? They’ve proven very capable of rooting out Vampires in the past.” Suggested the Duke of Ludendorff

“And re-enact the purges? How many innocents died falsely accused of Vampirism and Witchcraft?” the Prince of Oststierre replied

“Perhaps we can control them this time,” the Duke responded

“That’s what our fathers thought….”

Emperor Karl Franz sat silently at the end of the table watching the Electors bicker and argue about the best course of action to take. He sat up straight, and tapped the handle of his ceremonial mace on the floor. The room instantly fell silent. When the Emperor spoke, everyone listened.

“Yes. You are all right. We must root out the Vampires within our own society first, then see to those abroad. We shall summon the Witch Hunters, but they shall be subservient to the Army, and they will not be given the autonomy they had before. No mobs or militias. As for Carvania, they shall have to accept a representative of ours onto their court, and accept a garrison.”

“But what if they refuse?,” one of the Princes asked, “We know how fiercely independent they are.”

“Then we shall inform them that the garrison will be at their expense, or we threaten to make them our protectorate. No expense will be spared in Golgotha’s security.”
Last edited by Greater Latica on Thu Apr 13, 2017 8:38 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Pageon
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Founded: May 21, 2010
Ex-Nation

Gerriol-Capital of Alainasta-4E150

Postby Pageon » Wed Apr 12, 2017 6:23 pm

Corynx Ferrongard strode through the great doors into the meeting chamber of the Dragon Lords and King, he was the last to arrive and the elder Dragon Lords were all seated and waiting their eyes followed him as he came to his seat at the round marble table. He was an unknown quantity to the other lords, his ascension happening after the last meeting of the lords. As he was seating himself and taking stock of the others at the table the doors swung open once more and King Orion Nasalain calmly walked into the chamber, his long ceremonial robes drifting across the smooth stone floor, the elven lights surrounding the chamber dimmed in his presence as he took his seat at the largest throne.

"We have all gathered here today to discuss a matter of upmost urgency" The King began, his eyes narrowing on some of the older Dragon Lords who looked unconcerned "A raven came to my chamber carrying a message from our ambassador in Ancelstierre. Vampires attacked the Golgothan capital during their ceremony marking 150 years since breaking the siege of their city."

"Bah, vampires attacking humans is nothing of importance to call a meeting of the Dragons Council. The Vampyric Plague has been around for many centuries, it wasn't likely to die out with just that purge of Carvania that Golgotha perpetuated" an Older Dragon Lord Remarked, Corynx looked in the older mans direction giving him a short look of frustration, the man had not a clue what an attack on the capital of the humans largest kingdom mean't especially when done by vampires

"My King do we have specifics as to what occured? It could explain why you called us and allow us to discuss more without being blind" Another Dragon Lord asked, he was one of the middle aged Elves in the room, not quite as difficult and more open than the older Lords.

"Indeed, it appears between 100 and 200 Vampires attacked the ceremony, they began by executing in a gruesome fashion the Duke of Ancelstierre. They then proceeded to run wild, murdering and slaughtering all in their path. Our embassy which is only a couple streets away from the carnage accepted in refugees from the chaos, saving many humans as the elven guard and ambassador himself burned any vampire that attempted to sneak into the building. It appears our well trained wardens are still highly capable of dispatching such infected individuals." The King looked around at each Lord, gaining some insight into how they felt from their faces

"THEY DID WHAT!?" The same older Lord from earlier stood to his feet shouting indignantly, it appeared he was a racist "How dare that Ambassador allow those filthy creatures onto land owned by Alainasta! I demand his resignation immediately! We can not allow such frivolous behaviour and let the humans believe that we are soft and weak of heart!"

Corynx shot up planting his hands firmly on the marble table causing the King to raise one of his eyebrows "My fellow Lord I respectfully request that you shut up before you make even more of a fool of yourself. What is more important in this message is that it clearly shows the Vampires are still capable of combined attacks, and it only takes an individual of similar magical power as Van Drak to cause a new great war. You all remember what happened the last time? We lost 5 sections of Ferosix and the world was almost overrun by the undead. My king I request that we put more of our economy in expanding our military, we have become complacent few of our people know how to fight properly, I bet a well trained human would defeat most of our people in sword combat and that is discounting their advances without magic!"

"Quiet, you are not worthy of speaking here yet! You have only just been appointed as Dragon Lord you have yet to earn the respect of those at this table!" One of the other Lords shouted back at Corynx, only incensing him further

"Neither am I so old and blind to see the fact before us is that we are approaching a new threat in the world, Rennoa and its holdings will begin training more forces as we will be the ones in the line if a threat does emerge and will act independently of the rest of our nation if it ensures my peoples survival!"

The King raised his hand, an order for silence in the room. He could see this young Lord was correct and was glad that it had not been he to raise the issue, the truth was the Elven people had been stagnating for too many decades, hell even centuries, and people such as the young Dragon Lord Ferrongard had been silenced publicly for attempting to change the status quo, never before had someone as progressive reached the highest rank possible in the Elven people. Dragons were not known for bonding with those who wished great change, yet his dragon had been one of those rare in his own species that wished for the world to be better.

"I believe I agree with the young Lord Ferrongard on this, Lords and Ladies here at this table must not be so blind as to see a new threat to our people. We must be vigilant in the defense of our nation and our species. As such I fully sanction your expansion of your own forces Ferrongard, as well as any other Dragon Lord that wishes to do the same, I will also be raising a larger royal army under my command ready for any threat we may face. On the topic of the ambassador, I believe his actions were in accordance with our beliefs and Alaina's wishes, she would not ask us to shut out and leave a being to be slaughtered by such a dark enemy, this is what drove us to fight the Vampires in the first war, to protect the world."

Most of the Dragon Lords at the table nodded their heads apart from three, the oldest and those most vocal over the Ambassadors decision, Corynx studied their faces, the anger in their eyes was obvious but they could not argue with their king, they were cowards in a way, unwilling to accept change in any regard, much like their bonded dragons, those three should have given up their positions a decade ago yet they still clung to their titles.

"My King may I also suggest we send a new delegation to Golgotha to aid our current ambassador" the look he gave the King was one of respect but he was unsure of how the king would respond and he hoped it did not reflect in his eyes.

"And for what reason would we send more elves to Ancelstierre?"

"To learn of the humans technology and to prepare their people capable of using magic for a new war, any advantage is sure to be good and may create a lasting relationship with the humans. One that might lead to our peoples never being at war again. I'm sure you have all heard the tales of their steam golems, weapons created not of magic but the hard graft of human hands. Such a ability with their size means we would be at an extreme disadvantage should we ever go to war, and sacrificing Ferosix is out of the question. Thus we must compromise on our hate towards the humans. They have advanced in some ways beyond us, we can not allow our people to be relegated to the annals of history"

The King looked at the young Lord passively giving none of his inner thoughts away, his mind slowly turning over the idea in his head till slowly he nodded his head in ascent, he would allow the young Lord to do this, on one condition "I will also allow this but. You must be a part of this delegation, and you must travel to Ancelstierre without your dragon, you may take 20 of your most trusted with you as well, I will make sure to inform the ambassador and that he also informs the Emperor of Golgotha. Is this acceptable?"

"Yes my King, I will not fail our people"

The assembled Lords began to filter out of the great room, the meeting chamber that had decided so many great things for the Elven people, leaving the King to sit pondering what would happen in the near future, as Dragon lord Corynx's beliefs and changes began to effect elven society, the young Lord had rushed out, eager to begin his journey in earnest, most likely flying to Rennoa first to pick his entourage and then set sail via ship from its docks to the mainland and up the river leading to Golgotha, he honestly wished him luck, his mission could mean the difference between the Elven peoples further decline, or their return to glory.
Allies:Othileon, Greater Latica
Pageon Statistics:
Notable for large advances in technology, and a military with numerous autonomous weapons and drones. The nation is led by Emperor Callum Carmichael and his Arch-Lectors. The nation worships a Pantheon of Gods led by the warrior God Allenstag. The populace of Pageon are highly educated and due to intelligent investments by the government the economy is currently running a surplus, although civil liberties were curbed to aid in this. The people are extremely apathetic and the elected portion of the government is filled mainly by merit over popularity. Pageon's closest ally is Greater Latica despite the divide between economic principles their cultures are similar enough that their populations are able to mix with surprising ease.

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Sarrin
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Ex-Nation

Postby Sarrin » Thu Apr 13, 2017 12:40 pm

Castle Courtyard, Templar State of Tharis

Since hearing the news Tharis had been in chaos. Templars rushed about, trying to correlate reports and brief various officials. The Templars had been created to counter this very threat and yet they seemed completely unprepared for it; their relevant missives and documents seemed to either be missing or incomplete. Outside, the leaders of the Templars stood on the grounds by the gates bidding farewell to Marshall Saxon.

Saxon was a well-respected member of the order whose prowess in arms was matched only by his zealotry to the faith. Prior to joining the order Saxon had been raised by the monks of the Holy Flame who reinforced in him a reverence for the dying faith that was scarcely seen. Indeed he was usually kept within the grounds to train soldiers but with the situation in Golgotha they needed to send a senior member. Originally Grand Master Masiar was to lead the inquisition himself but with the rampant disorder that had overcome them he felt oblige to remain.

“This presents a unique opportunity for us Saxon” The Grand Master boomed “After decades spent denying the survival of Vampirism, they are finally forced to accept that the enemy still exists. You must make an ally of Golgotha.”

Saxon nodded “With the Flame on my side I will find glory for our Order though I must reiterate my concerns by our delegation. I understand we may want to withhold our finest but sending only apprentices and agents?”

Masiar shook his head and placed his hand on Saxon’s shoulder reassuringly

“We need our core here should the Vampires turn their attention to us. With additional training on the road I’m sure your force will be superb and Argus’ agents should provide for any shortcomings you find.”

“If you say, where is the inquisitor anyhow is he not wishing me well?”

“Unfortunately he is preoccupied with our situation, he believes he has discovered the source of this chaos and we’re heading to his office after we see you off.”
Saxon nodded before turning to his men and signalling to begin packing their gear. Seneschal Mormont who had remained silent till this point chose to take the opportunity to speak. He was a tall and rough man hailing from Morgath. An unlikely candidate for seneschal he had risen to the post after his predecessor fell suddenly ill and had been forced into a trial by fire. Despite this he had proven himself time again as an able administrator and had the full trust of his colleagues.

“I know you’ll do us proud Saxon but remember who you’re speaking to. Golgothans don’t like religion. They like science and highlighting your faith on them may turn potential friends into enemies”

“Worry not my friend, the Golgothans know they need us and won’t turn me away. Now go on to the Inquisitor, It’d be nice if this mess was sorted before I return!”
As he spoke he chuckled and turned to face his men. They were fresh faced and young but clearly ready to prove themselves. He walked out in front of them and gave the signal to depart.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Office of the High Inquisitor

As they entered the office Argus was perusing over a parchment not even raising his gaze to them.

“Is the situation so dire you won’t even acknowledge us Argus?” The Grand Master asked, fear creeping into his voice.

Argus looked up putting down the parchment as if surprised by their arrival. He first looked to the Seneschal and gestured at the door only speaking after it had been closed. As he spoke he opened his desk and took from it the dagger he had prayed to only hours before.

“The situation is dire my lord, we have a traitor in our midst and my discovery of this dagger confirms it. Among our people is a worshiper of Isillion”

Masiar gulped. He knew that an agent of the Haggard Man could have done even more damage than was already showing. After a momentary silence he moved to speak but was stopped by Argus who raised a hand to him and stood from his desk.

“The traitor would have to be a senior member of our order to have caused such disorder but fortunately my agents have revealed their identity.”

“Well don’t leave us in suspense, who is it?” shouted Mormont reflecting the impatience known of his people. Argus merely smiled and approached the cupboard in the corner of the room.

“Initially the evidence pointed to the Marshall hence why I arranged for him to travel light; I didn’t want to risk him having support to overpower my agents if we felt we had to implement justice.”

He took from the cupboard a bottle of wine and three glasses pouring the vintage into them as he spoke

“I then discovered a single missive however that exposed the truth, the Marshall was a mere diversion conveniently placed to confuse an investigator –“

“Do you never speak in certainties? Tell us the source so I might kill them myself” Mormont furiously demanded.

Masiar placed a hand on Mormonts and looked him in the eyes; “Calm my friend I’m sure Argus has a reason for this tale, he wouldn’t waste our time for no reason, now please continue.”

Argus smiled and took the drinks to the table placing the glasses in front of his guests before returning to his seat and continuing his story clearly irate at the interruption

“Indeed, you see the evidence then pointed to you Grand Master but this was absurd, after all if you wished to sabotage the order you could have merely dissolved us!”

The Grand Master scoffed, a wry smile crossing his face. The seneschal was less amused and took a large drink from his glass watching Argus carefully.

“As such I looked back at the evidence as it was and spoke to my agents at which point we discovered this dagger. You see it was hidden in the Seneschal’s dresser –“
As he spoke he picked the dagger up rubbing his finger across the blade, grazing his fingertip but showing no pain.

“This dagger bears the mark of our traitor. And was found in the Seneschal’s possession…”Argus let out suggestively.

Mormont stood from his chair throwing the glass onto the floor

“This is outrageous, I shall not stand for such tre-“

He coughed once. Again. His hand clutched at his heart and he collapsed to his feet grabbing the table before him as death consumed him.

“AH—Argus—Y—YOU—TRATOR” he spurted out as he collapsed to the floor his body convulsing for moment before finally losing life completely.

Masiar stood quickly up looked to the body before staring at Argus. “This is not how we resolve problems Argus, what if he is proven innocent!”

Argus smiled. “But he is innocent Grand Master!”

Masiar stared at Argus for a moment entirely confused until the truth dawned on him. He moved to grab his blade but as quickly as the truth had hit him the dagger flew from Argus’ hand and into his chest. He staggered briefly taking the hit in stride before he felt a great draining throughout him the dagger drawing his life force into it.

The Grand Master dropped to his knees as blood spilled down his chest. “What is the meaning of this Argus? Why betray everything you’ve stood for?”
Argus walked around his desk still smiling.

“You ignorant fool; this organisation has been a farce from its inception. When I assumed my post I barely had to exert myself destroying documents and missives. You welcomed my reforms with open arms, allowing me to place agents in every crevice and have a say on every major decision. So have I really betrayed everything I stand for? No, you are the real traitor, for you have been serving that which you fought so hard to destroy.”

“Templars! Men! Come to your Grand Master!” Masiar tried to shout with a determination and ferocity unexpected from so wounded a man.

Argus laughed walking closer. “The office is soundproof Masiar, another gift you gave me without a single question. Indeed my ascension would never have been possible without your ignorance”

Masiar looked back at him his eyes fuming with hatred as Argus took hold of the dagger, dragging it upwards from the wound and up to the top of his chest.
“It’s dragon bone so don’t be surprised your mail can’t withstand it.”

Masiar looked up defiantly his armour keeping his organs inside, muttering a prayer to the Great Flame as the pain consumed him. Argus grunted twisting the blade in Masiar’s chest cutting of his prayer with a squeal of pain. The dagger cut through his armour like it was paper. As if a ragdoll Masiar collapsed to the floor as the blade finally pierced his heart.

A pity, Argus thought, he’d been such a useful pawn.

Argus drew the blade from the Grand Master and proceeded to slash his own shoulder with it, grunting with pain as blood spewed from the wound. He then sunk the blade into the Grand Master’s body once more... As he began to lose blood he drew his own sword and hacked at the Seneshal’s body, throwing it aside as he began to feel himself ready to pass out. He ran to the door and opened it.

“Help…the seneschal…betrayed us all!” He cried out to the passing Templars.

As he slipped out of consciousness Templars rushed to his aid calling for medics and mages to be brought. Not for a second did anyone suspect that they were merely playing supporting roles in Argus’s most elaborate performance.

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Cheye
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Founded: Jun 21, 2014
Capitalist Paradise

Postby Cheye » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:48 pm

South Midenstierre, Golgotha – 4E-150

The road that led from Ancelstierre to the border with Carvania was a long one. Dubbed the Great Road; it had been built eons ago, to form an overland trade route between the humans of the River Kislev in the north and the nomadic Elves who grazed their animals along the River Pyr in the south. Those Elves were long gone, the road that led traders to their lands soon pumping in soldiers and settlers in equal measure. Human populations reached the banks of the Pyr, eventually founding Carvania in the swamps that lay beneath the Borag Mountains, and Franchea in the ruins of the once-great Elven city now known as Val Lyonesse. Several other dominions were established between Ancelstierre and Syliv; notably at Varstierre, Midenstierre, Nuln and Komovi, all of them marked significant waystations along the route south, and all of them spawning their own interconnecting roads and trade routes with other populations to the east and the west.

All of them were changed forever when the Vampires came. Every city, town and hamlet along the Great Road fell to Vlad Van Drak’s undead horde, and the great dominions that crossed it were all consigned to the annals of history at the end of the Vampire Wars. Now they were all either part of Golgotha, and were now ruled from Ancelstierre, the city that straddled the Kislev, or were part of Carvania and ruled from Syliv, which sat not seventy miles from the Pyr.

This presented a strategic nightmare for any Vampire who hoped to use Carvania as a starting point to rebuild the old Ascendancy, and Jacques de la Grey knew it. For one, Vlad Van Drak had had a serious advantage conquering the old world precisely because the dominions along the way were not united under one banner. Infighting and mistrust was just as great among the Princes, Counts and Dukes of the old world as it had been amongst the unliving and greater still was the animosity between those wealthy dominions who had the fortune of straddling the Great Road and those of the Eastern Kingdoms. One of the reasons the Vampire Wars had been a series of wars instead of a single continuous struggle was because of the fragmented nature of the landscape Van Drak had been conquering.

The newfound unity that Golgotha had tried to foster between the ‘Electors’ of the East would surely hinder any attempt at unilaterally rebuilding the Vampyric Ascendany in Carvania. Even if relations between them weren’t at an all-time high, they would set aside their differences for the Emperor if even the whiff of Vampirism was caught coming from Carvania.

And that was why Vaas Van Drak’s call for a conclave troubled Jacques greatly. Sure, as the cultural and spiritual homeland of the Vampires, Carvania was critical to his vision but it could not yet be the centrepiece it deserved to be because the humans would view it as a threat if the Vampires resurfaced there.

In fact, they already did. Jacques’ friends at court had already informed him of the Emperor’s plan to force a garrison upon the Van Der Barrs. A reaction Jacques had predicted, as he lay in wait at Lorenhoff, a large village on the edge of the Great Road, just north of the provincial border with Nulnstierre. A village which any soldiers sent from Golgotha to Carvania were likely to pass; if they came by road.

He knew the Golgothans would instantly suspect Carvania, though it troubled him that a Vampire in Syliv, a Van Drak in the Prince’s own Court no less, had the audacity to call for a conclave. He knew it would come of course, after the spectacle he had unleashed upon Ancelstierre, it was inevitable the other pure-bloods would have questions. He’d expected Rebekah Waldoff or the Avaalon Vampires to be the ones to call a conclave, a secret gathering in Ludendorff or Vallia’s Stand wouldn’t attract attention, but to gather in Syliv would be sure to draw suspicion.

That meant that this next part of his plan had just become even more important. If the soldiers of the Golgothan garrison were attacked once they reached Carvania, the Emperor would surely just double down or even just re-annex the province, but if they were set upon long before they reached the border, in the heart of Midenstierre…

Stepping out from the spot where he had been lingering, waiting for the sun to set, in a shadowy alcove behind the stables, on the edge of Lorenhoff, Jacques marched briskly out of town. His long dark cape fanned out behind him as he passed a drunken watchman who seemed more concerned with downing a flagon of ale than he did watching the hooded stranger head of town.

As Jacques followed the road uphill, to a junction that connected the village to the Great Road, he pressed on straight ahead, jumping with catlike agility over a bush and on through the adjacent field.

He felt the cold night breeze ruffle his hood as he reached the far side of the field and saw the large mound of earth begin to rise up over the horizon in front of him. He smiled, as he leapt over the small cobbled wall that separated the field from the mound, he began to scale it, eventually he reached the top of the mound.

From this vantage point he could look out over the dimly lit village of Lorenhoff and for several miles along the Great Road to both the north and south. But it was not what was out there that interested him…

Dropping to a crouch, he drew a gilded dagger from his belt and with delicate care, pricked the tip of his index finger, dropping a single drop of his vampiric blood onto the earth below, before his wound instantly healed. Then he closed his eyes and began to mutter those immortal words from the Larashel Necronomicon, words he had painfully spent the last century memorising. Ancient words, powerful words that sounded like arcane gibberish to mortal ears.

Once the ritual had finished, he quirked a brow, not even the grass at the foot of the mound stirred, surely the words were more than gibberish? As the first flicker of doubt Jacques had felt in years crept in to his mind, they were instantly dismissed however, as a crack began to appear three feet to his right.

His eyes widened as a rotting hand lunged out of the crack. Another appeared to his left. Then another. Then another. Then another. The entire barrow began to vibrate as the long-dead inhabitants rose from their mortal slumber and were called to him. Drawn by the slither of Van Drak blood that ran through his veins and bound by the words of the Necronomicon. He leapt from the barrow, descending it quickly as it cracked open and hundreds of flesh-ravaged and skeletal corpses rose up.

As he watched them rise up and mill about, he noticed that many of them clutched crumbling weapons and were clad in old, long-rusted armour. He focused himself and projected a clear image of them forming into organised ranks in his mind and sure enough, the bond that the magic had forged between himself and them, communicated his will to the otherwise mindless corpses and slowly but surely they formed ranks.

A wicked smile crossed his face as he realised the sheer power of the magic he possessed, much of this had been thought lost with the fall of the Ascendancy, it had taken him over a century to get to this stage.

Now for the real test. He raised his arm dramatically, dagger still in hand, and pointed it towards Lorenhoff. The undead legion turned as one. And then they began to march…
Last edited by Cheye on Mon Apr 17, 2017 1:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Sarrin
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Founded: Dec 21, 2016
Ex-Nation

Postby Sarrin » Fri Apr 14, 2017 12:46 pm

High Peak, Garniem

Silence filled the hall as the Jarl’s of Garniem met awaiting the Kings decision. While opening the door had been largely accepted as the correct decision the debate on whether to allow migration in and out of the land was still divisive. Jarl Clew and Isdran were shooting glares at each other across the room. Clew had been arguing tirelessly against allowing any migration representing the strong conservative values the Dark Forest Jarl’s had always stood for. Isdran however had proven to be a surprise to the council. As the ruler of the Galbridge Pass any threats or crises from the outside would hit him before any others leading many of his ancestors to fiercely fight for keeping the gate closed. Isdran however had little intention on being constrained by their fear and instead saw the potential economic benefits of the gates opening, not to mention the threats to order that could occur if citizens were denied the right to migrate. With the council divided the King had the ultimate decision and the Jarls awaited his answer.

“After much consideration I have made my decision” King Godfrey announced breaking the silence of the room after what felt like hours.

“Many among you view me as a dangerous progressive and while I know I can count on your loyalty it is my duty and responsibility to respect your opinions and feelings. Clew has spoken passionately of the dangers that outside influences could pose to our nation particularly as migrants return home with ideas and items of the outside world. By contrast Isdran has showed us the economic miracles that could await us. Indeed the decision I face now is not so different from my ancestor King Aldred who first sent scouts out beyond the pass in Ages past. As such I spent much time reading of him before making the decision and found the arguments we speak of today very similar to those said to him in his own council.”

The Jarl’s chuckled knowing many of their ancestors had been in the meetings and likely spoken the very same words. Godfrey allowed joy to fill the air and subside before speaking again preparing himself to make the decision that he had come to make.

“In light of this discovery, and as many of you have said to me what they said to him, I shall say to you what Aldred spoke. ‘Garnian’s are not prisoners nor are we servants. We are free citizens living in our Jarldom’s by choice with every right to change settlement as we desire. This decision is rooted in the days of our tribes when we would follow only the strongest leaders’. These words echo in our present situation and I will not cage our people. Garnian’s will be allowed to migrate wherever they wish and if the world shall prove hostile to them as Clew has suggested then we will defend them with the strength we have always shown in the past”

As Godfrey finished he eyed over the Jarls fully expecting outrage and fury but instead was met by a prolonged silence. As the tension began to fester Jarl Greymane stood from his chair and began to applaud swiftly being followed by Jarl’s Isdran and Tordrig. Indeed before long even Clew stood from his seat and applauded the King’s words. Godfrey smiled and signalled for the Jarls to sit giving a thankful nod to Greymane who simply bowed his head with a respectful smile in return.

“I thank you for your support and the knowledge of your continued loyalty. We will open the gates tomorrow and Clew I would ask that you join the first delegation of migrants to Morthin so as that we can be sure of their safety”

“It would be my honour” Clew responded. The council then turned to further matters of the realm and the logistics of the migratory expectations and protections they would need.

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Infirmary, Tharis Castle

Argus had been unconscious since the betrayal with his wounds tended to by the finest Templar healers. As he began to wake he forced his eyes to remain shut and instead listened to his surroundings. He could hear the healers around him and besides him a heavy breathing likely from a bodyguard.
‘Perfect’ he though and opened his eyes at last. Argus first took a deep breath to draw attention and quickly found the healers at his stead barraging him with questions on what occurred in his chamber and whether he was alright. He raised a hand over exaggerating his weakness but with enough authority to silence the Knights.

“We have been betrayed by the Seneschal who has sought to undermine our every effort. For years he has been compromising our defences and causing division in our ranks but last night I confronted him with evidence I had found. He turned on me with his dagger before attacking the Grand Master, we didn’t expect it…I should have known better”

For affect he turned away and portrayed remorse and disappointment in his face. The Templar next to him placed a hand on his shoulder

“The Seneschal was clearly a master schemer to have concealed this ruse do not be too hard on yourself Argus after all with the chain of command you are now acting Grand Master”

Argus feigned shock he was of course aware this would happen and had long awaited it. Only the Marshal outranked him but with his agents intercepting any carrier ravens or messengers Saxon would not hear of what occurred. Even more so he would certainly not return to the castle to take control.
“I…I’m not worthy of such an honour” he said humbly. He had been practicing his performance for years.

The healers nodded among themselves believing every word and gesture to be genuine. They awed at the humility of the torn man before them as if the original Grand Master elected from his own men had lied before them. They took turns offering him praise and reassurance before the Templar changed the tone of the conversation.

“Regardless of leadership we need to know our next move. The Seneschal’s body is ready for autopsy but his agents could strike at any moment”
Argus looked the Templar dead in the eyes speaking with determination and authority

“Burn the body, before he attacked I found the base of his operations and revealed the true villainy of his actions. We were distracted by investigating the lycanthropes there but this only diluted our resources. We have no time to lose now I’m awake I shall have to continue my recovery on the road. Ready the men, tonight we ride to seize and cleanse Morthin.”

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Greater Latica
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Founded: May 14, 2010
Democratic Socialists

Postby Greater Latica » Sun Apr 16, 2017 3:01 am

Unknown Location
4E-150


The heavy stone walls did little to hide the shrieks in the cavernous halls of the dungeon. Chained, hanging from the ceiling were the captives from the ‘incident’ in Ancelstierre. Standing in front of them on a wooden podium was a Witch hunter, wearing their distinctive wide brimmed hats and buckled leather armour, his leather gorget rising high enough to cover the majority of his face.

“Tell me who orchestrated the attack, and this will all stop,” he stated flatly, no emotion in his voice.

“Only because you’ll kill us!” one of the Vampires shouted back, exasperated.

“But is that not better than an eternity of this?” He gestured arms wide “It will be a release from your disease. Do not consider it death, consider it a cure for an affliction”

“I want none of your cure!” one of the other Vampires spat, globules scattered over the Witch hunter’s platform and onto his boots.

“Now that’s not very pleasant is it?” responded the Witch hunter, still with the same expressionless voice. He raised his right hand, and dropped it swiftly, and on cue the Vampires all shrieked again as electricity coursed down their chains, large blue lightning bolts arcing across the room. They writhed and squirmed as the electricity hijacked their bodies and nervous systems. Their wrists were burned from the heat of the chains, and smoke began to issue from where their bodies touched the wrought iron shackles.

The Witch hunter raised his hand again and the electricity stopped as quickly as it had begun.

“Now let’s try this again, shall we? Tell me who orchestrated the attack, and this will all stop.”

Sudestierre
4E-150


The newly established Golgothan Expeditionary Force formed up as their equipment was loaded on the locomotives waiting in the railyard, artillery and steam carriers were loaded onto flat wagons and covered with tarpaulins to hide them from view. The move was conducted with the utmost secrecy; the fear of Vampires permeated all levels of Golgothan society.

The Golgothan railway network’s tendrils reached into the furthest corners of the Empire, but stopped short of the borders. The expeditionary force was to use the railway to the border between Hochstierre and Carvania, before dismounting and moving the rest of the way by Steam carrier.

South Midenstierre
Lorenhoff


Lorenhoff was silent, the undead had torn through the population like wildfire, devastating them whilst they slept, the city watch only providing an uncoordinated and inept resistance, the fires they had started had now burnt out, leaving only cinders and a black cloud that hung overhead ominously, like a gravestone for the entire village. The watch had, in their haste, forgotten that fire didn’t affect the undead in the same way it did Vampires. The undead had swollen their numbers further, first with Lorenhoff’s residents and then with the morning’s first traders heading down the Great road.

It was some hours before anything was noticed; no one had survived the slaughter to seek help, but suspicions were aroused when there were no merchant wagons arriving at their destinations, and when the massive semaphore tower outside the village stopped responding. Rumours began to abound, driven by the tensions all too prevalent in Golgotha. The Guild of Merchants and Traders had called for help in discovering what had happened to their members, and more importantly their payloads, whatever was blocking the Great road could cost them and their suppliers a lot of money.

The 1st Tuninheim light infantry (Baron of Tuninheim’s own) and the Tuninheim Baronial Dragoons had been sent by the Baron of Tuninheim, who had been at breakfast when he had received the guild’s request by semaphore. His interest was piqued, enticed by the prospect of something interesting in the quiet areas of Midenstierre and Tuninheim, and had contributed his best regiments to the search.

Colonel Bocke had set up his regimental headquarters alongside the Great road, a series of large canvas tents were arrayed in lines as part of the encampment. Bocke was annoyed, he’d grown up hearing stories of the Vampire wars, and these motivated him to join the Golgothan army, but in his time he’d never fired his weapon off the firing range, let alone go to war, and now he was a glorified traffic officer. Even with the Vampire risk, there was no need to send a whole regiment, a company of two would have sufficed, but he had been given his orders, and he was going to follow them.

The dragoons went first as scouts, their horses allowing them to cover ground much more quickly than Bocke’s infantry. It was little over an hour until Bocke had received the first reports of
Lorenhoff’s fate. He rode out to meet the forward elements at the hills overlooking the village, the smoke from the charred buildings drifting lazily on the breeze, dragging behind it the stench of death and rotted flesh. Bocke could see through his binoculars the shambling forms of the undead wandering between the buildings, however there was no sign of how they got there, the undead don’t just ‘appear’, not in Golgotha anyway. They have to be summoned and then imbued with necromantic magic to give them their ‘unlife’. However considerations of that importance were much higher than Bocke’s pay grade, he was here to complete a mission; to free up the Great road to allow the merchant trade that was critical to the existence of the outer regions of Golgotha and to do that he was going to have to clear the Village.

The tranquillity of the Village of the undead was broken by gunshots. A company had formed a line at the edge of Lorenhoff, facing directly down the main street. On Bocke’s order A company volley fired down the street, their bullets ripping through the undead with ease. The cacophony echoed off the empty buildings, drawing the undead like moths to a light. The undead charge was uncoordinated, they just threw themselves headlong into the gun line, trying to satisfy their primordial desires. As the undead surged forwards B company filtered through and took up position, forming a tightly locked phalanx with their spear points forward, blocking the entire street and preparing to receive the charge. The Golgothan army spear was designed for this exact purpose, with an eight foot haft made of ash or hickory, and a one foot long narrow blade with two long wings protruding from the side just below the blade, to prevent the undead pushing its way down the spear and attacking the wielder. The spear also had a large brass counterweight to balance the spear better, and allow it to be used to finish off incapacitated enemies as the phalanx advanced over them. The phalanx descended into a pushing match, as the weight of the undead pressed against the formation, crushing those at the front against the wings and shields, tearing them apart and in some cases splitting them in half. Fearless and unable to feel pain more and more of the undead swarmed towards the phalanx, responding the riflemen advanced and began to push on the back of the phalanx, trying to stop them crumbling under the weight of bodies. C and D companies, covered by the rifle companies of the other battalions made their way up side streets preparing for the flank charge. In a Tuninheim infantry battalion, the C and D companies were sword companies, armed with single handed swords and shields. The bugles sounded and the companies launched their charge, a storm of hand grenades exploded, before the troops drove into the undead from the sides. The Golgothan pattern sword, although capable of thrusting was optimised for slashing attacks, much better against an undead or vampire target, the blades being able to sever limbs and create long deep cuts that took longer to heal. The undead, having no perception of defeat, continued to press against the shield walls presented to them, but with little success. The brutal melee carried on, until eventually under the assault of the sword companies the undead were devastated and slaughtered, there was no point trying to capture or preserve any.

Colonel Bocke observed from the hill, already mentally compiling his reports for the Baron and the Guild.
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Cheye
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Capitalist Paradise

Postby Cheye » Mon Apr 17, 2017 2:41 pm

South Hochstierre, Golgotha - 4E-150

A loan bat flew in through the window of the old long-abandoned church, it was a little after midnight and the inhabitants of the village of Hochkov were sleeping. Suddenly the bat became a giant dark cloud and within the blink of an eye that cloud became a person. A handsome young man, wearing fashionable clothing under a dark cape. His hood was down, showing off his long brown hair, in his hurried walk he did not stop to raise it.

He marched down the central aisle with a look that would indicate irritation if anyone were there to see it. Jacques didn’t like leaving anything to chance. He had always suspected that in their fear the Golgothans would move their troops by rail to the border, but it had been a well-kept secret that the line that ran along the Pyr River from Sudestierre was even finished, much less that it ran all the way to the border with Carvania. Hence why he had taken the time to attack Lorenhoff, a spot where typically any garrison moving to Carvania would have passed through.

As soon as his spies had told him that the troops coming to investigate were the Baron of Tuninheim’s, rather than a force travelling south, he got himself on the road south without delay. His undead horde had no doubt been mindless, mulling about and killing at random without him there to oversee the action, but what purpose would sticking around to kill militiamen serve when the real threat was being pumped by locomotive along the Pyr.

It was little matter. He had made the necessary contingencies. As he neared the dusty altar, he clicked his fingers and suddenly the old candles, hanging in ancient sconces around the side of the crumbling church came to life, flickering brightly. Placing both hands on the altarpiece, a shoulders-breadth apart he smiled and began to mutter a different cursed-verse from the Larashel Necronomicon. This one filled him with a great sense of irony…

____________________________________________________________________________________________

South Hochstierre, Kingdom of Hoch – 3E-921

“Please don’t!” The oldest sister cried out.

“We must know the truth!” The Priest yelled back, the jeers and shouts of the mob that packed the church spurring him on as he ran his knife along the youngest girl’s wrist.

It was a crude test, one which doomed the thirteen year old either way. If blood did not fly out from the wound she would be named a Vampire and burned, if the Priest cut the artery and blood sprayed out uncontrollably, she would be deemed human and pardoned, in the unlikely event she survived.

The Priest knew what he was doing though, Hochkov needed to feel like it was taking a stand, these strange orphan girls who had lived on the edge of town for all these years would be small sacrifice.

“Look how even when I cut the artery she only bleeds for a second! This girl is a spawn of the Dark Prince himself!”

The crowd called for blood. They didn’t even care if the other sisters were innocent, here just beyond the borders of the newly founded Vampyric Ascendancy any one abnormal was a suspect, the sisters had never stood a chance.

“To the pyre!” The priest shouted and several of the larger villages came and hoisted the three teenagers onto the hay and logs that had been bundled together behind the altar for this very purpose.

It was an old Carvanian tradition to burn those suspected of Vamprism indoors, lest they turn into bats and fly away in the open air outside, it was a tradition that had caught on in many other parts of the world recently.

The girls all attempted to protest and scream, the youngest even bit the arm of the man who hoisted her up onto the makeshift pyre leading to calls for him to sanctify himself immediately lest he too become a creature of the night. The Church of the Holy Flame was the perfect place for him to do it, and after securing her he ran over to a nearby candelabra and flung his arm into the fire with the zeal of a true believer, screaming out in the hope that the fire would purify any corruption in the bite. Futile really, given her teeth hadn’t punctured his tunic, let alone his skin.

“Holy flame, purge these creatures of the night and let our village prosper. Holy flame, bless us, your faithful, mortal subjects as we cleanse this filth with your divine light!” The priest chanted as the crowd went silent, and then he lit the pyre…


____________________________________________________________________________________________

South Hochstierre, Golgotha – 4E-150

Three spirits answered his call. Three banshees anyway. When Vlad Van Drak had procured the Larashel Necronomicon it was said he made a pact with its unknown authors to ensure that whenever an innocent mortal was killed under the pretence of Vamprism, their spirit would be surrendered to the Prince of Darkness as if he had turned them himself. Banshees were the result.

With the book now practically memorised by Jacques de la Grey and the ancient Van Drak blood he possessed it was time for him to test this ancient rumour, for it had been centuries since Banshees had last been seen on Minern.

The three faces that appeared over the altar were faint and wisp-like, their features distorted after over four hundred years in the void between worlds. All Jacques could tell is that they had been young when they died. Not that it mattered, they would serve their purpose and get sweet revenge on mortal-kind for their fates.

He completed the binding ritual, drawing a single drop of blood from his fingertip with his gilded dagger and raising the spec to them so they could sense his claim to the dark and ancient blood line. One by one they did. Rising into the air with loud, high pitched shrieks, their wisp-like translucent bodies billowing out as they circled him and as one, in an ethereal voice, they asked; “What is your bidding?”

“There are locomotives en route to the border not far from here, they carry mortals who dare to oppose us. Wipe them out… All of them.” He ordered calmly, trying to hide the awe he felt at this ancient magic from his face.

In acknowledgement they shrieked loudly as one, no doubt waking the villagers who lived near the old church. Then suddenly they flew out through the walls of the church and were gone.

In all honesty he was unsure how likely they were to succeed, Banshees, though little better than feral beasts on the battlefield, could stop hearts with just a touch and were hard to kill without special silver weapons or wards but against an entire contingent of troops they would surely struggle. He sighed, turning to leave before the villagers came to investigate the candlelight and the screeching. Ultimately, he reasoned, they would do their job at sowing confusion on this side of the border and would hopefully delay the garrison long enough for Vaas Van Drak’s conclave.

That would be Jacques’ next destination.
Last edited by Cheye on Mon Apr 17, 2017 3:37 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Sarrin
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Ex-Nation

Postby Sarrin » Tue Apr 18, 2017 1:44 pm

Syliv, Carvania

The mood remained tense in Syliv as news continued to spread of the Vampyric attack in Ancelstierre. Cormac had arrived days before but chose to remain as a crow and merely observe the daily activities. Unlike in many realms, crows were common in Carvania and he had little difficulty blending in among the flocks from whose perch he was able to carefully watch the private moments of many senior members of court. Indeed it was from this perch he had observed Vaas Van Drak engaging in his deceptions and the Prince defending him to his suspecting daughter. It was not Cormac’s place to intervene though his curiosity had certainly been sparked. If vampirism were to return he would need to secure communication for his people. As such he chose this day at last to descend from his form.

Cormac waited carefully from his perch on a dying oak tree in the castle gardens watching the grand entrance to the hall for an inevitable opening. When at last the guards opened it at dawn he flew through the doors with a grace that reflected his experience in the wilds magics. Seeing the throne empty he flew through the corridors looking for Prince Francis, instead finding Vaas storming down the hall. Quickly recognizing him Cormac descended to the floor.

Vaas looked at the bird impatiently attempting to kick it out the way and releasing a scoff when it managed to carelessly evade his foot and move behind him. As the vampire continued down the hall Cormac began to unfold from his form, his feathers transforming into his robe and the small stick held in his claw swiftly growing into an ornately marked and carved staff the head of which was adorned with a crow whose piercing gaze glared at Vaas.

“I’d be more cautious if I were you, how your ilk escape detection by the hounds has always astounded me, I’d think the smell of death would permeate throughout the walls.”

Vaas came to a halt but did not turn to meet the voice. His mind raced with the possibilities and for a second he wondered if he’d imagined it, then he turned slowly and saw the ancient man behind him.

“Who are you to threaten me?!” Vaas sneered, though he kept his voice low, not wanting to cause a scene. Vaas’s extensive knowledge of the arcane arts told him that this man was quite obviously a rare practitioner of very powerful magic. He looked Cormac in the eye adding; “I wouldn’t make jokes about the smell of death unless you’re ready to be reminded of it?”
Cormac moved forward using his staff as a walking aid though it was unclear whether he actually needed it or was simply faking weakness.

“More threats? I’d think a pureblood such as yourself would be more cautious about having your secrets revealed or are you truly so afraid of a weak old man?”

“Afraid?...” Vaas quirked a brow, genuinely amused. “I do not fear you. Though your power is obvious.” As he spoke he began to march back down the corridor, closing the distance between himself and Cormac. “My power should be equally obvious, or would you like a demonstration?!” Vaas growled, his clenched fists beginning to crackle with the sparks of contained lightening as he looked at Cormac just begging for an excuse to unleash it.

“Hold your tongue or I’ll cut it off and watch you grow it back, skulker!” Cormac said nearly laughing as he smashed his staff onto the floor allowing it to stand on its own he then held it’s shaft with one hand holding his other towards Vaas. His eyes and palm glowed with bright green energy. As the pair stared each other down each waiting for a move a voice was heard down the hall.

“Cormac!” Francis boomed as he turned into the hallway. The pair quickly concealed their powers and turned to the ignorant Prince who had no suspicion of the animosity that had erupted between them.

“I’m afraid you’ve arrived at a bad time. Golgotha are pressing us quite heavily at the moment, as is their right in these circumstances, we won’t have time to entertain you as we often have.” The aging Prince explained breathing heavily.

Cormac raised an eyebrow and feigned surprise pretending he hadn’t been observing their conversations on the matter since the news had arrived at the castle. Indeed he knew perhaps even more about the various family members’ thoughts than any other of them did.

“That is quite alright my liege, I assume there are complications with your admission into the Empire? I can’t imagine they’d have any other reason to quarrel with you?”

“Oh and then some, just as my Grandfather learnt in his reign, I am learning now that for every step we take towards improving Carvania and becoming a recognised Imperial Principality, we take at least two backwards. My hope is that I can change that…” Francis said wistfully as if addressing an old friend.

Vaas coughed and Francis turned; “Ah Wilhelm, allow me to introduce Cormac, he’s an old friend, a traveller who occasionally brings news of the world to our door. Cormac; this is Wilhelm my Court Wizard, though it seems you’ve already met.” He smiled somewhat ignorantly.

“A pleasure.” Vaas said, his voice devoid of emotion. His mind already racing to work out whatever it was Francis wasn’t telling him.

“I assure you the pleasure is all mine” Cormac taunted back subtly before turning back to Francis blindsiding the vampire.

“I hope you know you can rely on me for any assistance you need, though if I might beseech you for a favour your situation with Golgotha could provide me with the opportunity I came to the court for” He darted a look at Vaas before turning back to the Prince.
Taking the hint, Francis dismissed Wilhelm with a gentle wave of his hand and Vaas reluctantly backed away, no doubt heading off to brood about his tense encounter with the stranger before trying to get to the bottom of who this ancient practitioner of wilds magic could be.

Francis led Cormac back towards the main throne room where eventually the old Prince collapsed into his throne and turned to look at Cormac with an expectant smile.

“Weary from the day my old friend?” Cormac said calmly again faking his own weakness by leaning onto his staff.

“You’ve no idea.” The Prince let out a tired sigh.

“I’m sure you’ll survive after all if my aged bones can keep grinding along I’m sure you’ve got plenty of life in you” he chuckled as he spoke.

“Oh Cormac, you’ve barely aged a day since we first met all those years ago. And here I am struggling to walk through my own damn castle!”

“I’m sure it’s not that bad after all your grandfather was able to hobble on late into his days!” As the pair chuckled away his face turned to a more serious note

“I’m afraid as I said before I do have a favour to ask, while I have had the pleasure of meeting the Emperor on occasion he has always viewed me with suspicion alongside intrigue. As you have no doubt heard Garniem has opened her gates to the world and we now seek to restore our place in the world. To do this we will need Golgotha's to meet our King and I cannot imagine a more perfect way to arrange this than a soiree in your very capital, perhaps to celebrate the anniversary of your great victory?”

Francis did not reply at first, he looked thoughtfully up to the ceiling of his palace. Finally he let out; “They’d never come… Not after Ancelstierre. To bring the Emperor here, to the heart of the old Vampyric Ascendancy? I wish they would, you know how badly I want this place to be amalgamated. But how?...”

“I see your concern Francis, of course it will be hard to convince the Empire but I cannot imagine a greater sign of their Imperial glory. Think of the prestige the Emperor would gain by walking in the very halls of the old enemy and how impressive it would seem to the elector counts. What clearer way to show the power of the 2nd Golgothan Empire to the world and to its people? The Empire has long waited in the shadows of its victory but to proudly stand in this throne room after 150 years, especially after the events at Ancelstierre, would prove that Golgotha is not afraid. Indeed it would show Golgotha to be the power it deserves to be. Not to mention that it would be even more impressive if the Emperor unveiled the the guest of honour to be the Garnian King, making his first public appearance in over a thousand years, this will of course be an event told throughout history.”

“So that’s your angle…” Francis chuckled, he had wondered what Garniem would gain from such a meeting, for him it was obvious; another step closer to amalgamation into the Empire. “I will send an invitation, though I’m afraid you may have to do some convincing of your own to get the Emperor to accept.” Nodding thoughtfully he added; “I’ll have a room prepared for you and we can talk details later, I’m sure you are tired after your journey.”

Cormac smiled and nodded respectfully “Indeed I am my Prince, with your permission I would first travel to Tierney Forest and hunt down an elk for your cooks to prepare. I would feel ungrateful a guest if I did not bring you the same kindness I have always brought you and your family before.”

Francis nodded, smiling at the kind cultural gesture and waving his hand dismissively as Cormac backed away from the throne.

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Greater Latica
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Democratic Socialists

Postby Greater Latica » Sat Apr 22, 2017 3:00 pm

4E- 150
Unknown Location


“Tell me who orchestrated the attack, and this will all stop.”

4E- 150
Eastern Hochstierre


The steam locomotives thundered forwards, the carriages and flatbed wagons rattling in their wake, surrounded by the inky black night, lit up by the orange red glow of the fireboxes. Unbeknownst to the crews and sleeping passengers this was not the only thing disturbing the cold dark night.

Rifleman Kirchner was on sentry, rifle slung on his shoulder by its canvas strap, and a small enamel tin mug in his hands, gentle white wisps of heat drifted into the air. He was watching out of the window trying in vain to see something in the darkness, trying to pass the time. Something made the hairs on the back of his neck stand on end and the oil lamps in the corridor began to dim. He turned slowly, his hand reaching cautiously for his rifle sling. There he saw it, emerging from one of the compartments, just metres from him, a ghostly blue green apparition, in the shape of a young woman. Mesmerised he stood unmoving, as it reached out and touched his chest where his heart was. The life drained from him, his skin going grey and cold, his lips and eye sockets recessing. He slumped against the wall, and slowly slid to the floor. His mug clattered from his hand, spilling its contents onto the floor, now stone cold, the heat sapped as easily as Rifleman Kirchner’s life.

--------------------------------------------------------------------

Maximillian Gerhardt awoke with a start, breathing heavily, covered in cold sweat, the oil lamp above him swaying with the train’s movement. He looked at his shirtless reflection in the mirror, his body covered in brands and tattoos. He stood up, and shook the bunk above him.

“Dieter, Dieter! Get up, get up.”

Dieter Schultze rolled over in his bed, “What is it now Max? It’s still dark, we can’t possibly be in Carvania yet, go back to bed.” He grunted and rolled back over.

Gerhardt shook the bed harder, “Dieter, something isn’t right about this, get up!”

“For heaven’s sake, Max, you’re a witch hunter, you can’t just wake me up when you have a bad dream.”

“This wasn’t a dream,” stated Gerhardt pulling on his tunic, “I can sense something, something wrong.”

“You and your bloody senses, honed like a predator they say,” Schultze complained climbing out of the bed hung on the wall, “more like a dead predator if you ask me.”

Gerhardt shot him a look.

“But a predator none the less.” Schultze recovered, “When this turns out to be nothing you owe me 5 marks.” He began pulling on his boots and dressing himself. Schultze was a very different man to Gerhardt, much smaller in stature, and with messy reddish brown hair. Witch hunters, like Gerhardt, would often keep a retinue with them, like a travelling group, each one possessing different skills and abilities to aid the Witch hunter in his quest. Schultze was part of that retinue, as an alchemist, he had proven himself to be incredibly useful to Gerhardt.

The two men made their way down the deserted carriage corridors. Everything was incredibly quiet, only the noises of the train could be heard, the rumble of the wheels on the rails, and the distant puffing sound of the locomotives at the front of the train. They crossed into the next carriage and were plunged into the darkness. The oil lamps had been extinguished. Gerhardt drew his brazier pistol, one of the symbolic weapons of the witch hunters, the long handled pistol had a wrought iron cage affixed to the muzzle, wrapped in thick treated hessian strips. There was a click and a shower of sparks as the flintlock mechanism at the front of the pistol lit the fuel soaked hessian, creating a small orb of light in the middle of the carriage. Gerhardt opened the door of the first compartment; the oil lamp was out here too. He leant down and shook one of the soldiers, but to no avail. He used his free hand to strip back the covers, revealing a grey shape, looking more like a skeleton, barely recognisable as having once been a man.

Schultze looked over Gerhardt’s shoulder and whispered, “What happened? a Vampire?”

“No, this isn’t right for a Vampire,” he felt the neck of the withered corpse, “no puncture wounds. It’s like his whole life force has been drained, not just his blood.”

“What could have done this?”

“I’m not sure, but I have my suspicions,” he walked out of the cabin, his leather trench coat flapping behind him. Holding his brazier pistol aloft, he drew his revolver, and began to move down the length of the train looking into the compartments one by one.

“You’re doing that thing, where you don’t tell me what you’re up to. Communication is a two way street.”

“I think it’s a spirit being, like a will o’ wisp, but it’s drawn to energy, like our life forces. I’m hoping it senses us, and comes looking.”

“Oh great, next time can you come up with a plan where we aren’t bait?”

“Be quiet. I think I see something in the next carriage.”

Schultze sighed, and followed, as Gerhardt eased open the gangway door. The oil lamps hadn’t gone out yet, but were incredibly dim. One of the compartments was lit with an eerily blue green glow. He cautiously peered in through the window. Inside was the ghostly apparition, it was leaning over one of the cot beds, holding its victim in an embrace, sapping the life out of him. Gerhardt, slid the door back, raised his revolver and fired three times, the bullets slipped through the apparition undisturbed and passed clean through the carriage wall. It shrieked and lunged at him, he rolled and it passed straight over him, before passing through the wall.

“What was that?” shouted Schultze, terrified.

“It’s a banshee!” Gerhardt replied, slamming his revolver back into its holster, “It’ll be back!”

The Carriage had become surrounded by a blue green glow, the banshees began to circle, like sharks. The banshees burst through the walls, Gerhardt fired his brazier pistol, the jet of flame reaching the length of the corridor, leaving charring marks and embers scattered through the carriage. Another banshee swooped through, and he fired his brazier pistol again, setting fire to the upholstery on the ceiling, and causing the lamps to fall on the floor. The brazier pistol was having no effect, one of the ethereals avoided the fire, and reached out for his chest, hand extended. As suddenly as it appeared, its hand turned black and began to turn into a black ash like solid. It released a howling shriek, making Gerhardt’s ears ring, and it soared out of the wall, earning the two a reprieve

Gerhardt drew his sword, a thick flat bladed cutlass, and shoved it towards Schultze, keeping his eyes trained down the corridor, “Dieter, I need you to transmute my sword.”

“What?” he replied, looking at the ceiling, his own weapon drawn.

“My sword, make it silver!”

“Why?”

“Don’t ask questions just do it! We don’t know how long we’ve got!”

Schultze activated his alchemist’s gauntlets, triggering the brass clockwork mechanism and activating the alchemist’s stone in the palm of the glove.

“I need a sample.”

“Of what?”

“The Silver, I need a sample to change your sword, I don’t just carry silver on me, copper, iron or brass that'd be easy, hell even the nitrogen in the air I can do.”

Gerhardt reached into his shirt and pulled out a silver medal embossed with the symbol of the Witch Hunters, and handed it to him wordlessly, distracted by the distant incoming shrieks. Schultze touched the medallion to the stone and its colour changed from a bright glowing yellow, to a white metallic shine. He waved his hands over the outstretched sword, and it too became shining silver.

“I hope you know what you’re doing.”

“So do I.”

The banshees came in for another attack, he swung his cutlass in a wide arc, passing through effortlessly, leaving in its wake nothing more than thick ashen dust. Schultze ducked as another approached from behind. Gerhardt thrusted deep into its chest, and the second banshee turned to dust just as easily as the first. The final banshee shrieked, and Gerhardt turned to meet it, thrusting it in a rapid downward motion, the blade piercing into the creature, and impaling its ashen form to the floor.

Schultze stood up, reached into his pocket, pulled out a five mark coin and placed it in Gerhardt’s hand.
Last edited by Greater Latica on Sat Apr 22, 2017 3:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Cheye
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Capitalist Paradise

Postby Cheye » Sat Apr 22, 2017 6:23 pm

Syliv, Carvania – 4E-150

The Vampires arrived separately and inconspicuously in the week preceding the conclave. Some stayed in the city, passing themselves off as weary travellers, while others made themselves comfortable in the crypts and passageways that ran deep beneath Syliv Castle as they had in the old days when those passageways filtered into the heart of the Ascendancy.

All of them fed upon the locals. Most were inconspicuous, leaving little proof of their nocturnal activities. Unfortunately others were less subtle and the number of people who died in their sleep with the tell-tale bite marks on their necks began to rise dramatically. Thank goodness they wouldn’t be here for long, and thank goodness that strange wilds mage who had confronted him the other day had left Syliv almost as quickly as he'd arrived; another complication out of the way, Vaas thought as he strode confidently through some of the lower passageways, a mile or so beneath the castle.

He arrived at a junction, three different passages forked off in front of him, one led to The Grand Hall of Oživených Mŕtvol where the Cult of the Living Dead used to practice their hedonistic and sacrificial rituals upon the mortals of Syliv, the second led deeper into the underground tunnel network. The third passageway led to a vast chamber. Inside, a huge circular stone table ran like a ring around the centre of the room, where there sat a large open fireplace that had clearly been unlit for centuries, Vaas shot a fireball into it and it lit up spectacularly, revealing the numerous dark, throne-like chairs that lined the edge of the room.

Even once the fire started roaring, shadows still crept into the vast room. The ceiling, which had an inbuilt chimney for filtering out smoke from the fireplace, was clouded in darkness and even with his heightened Vampiric senses, Vaas couldn’t see the top. The walls were plastered with cobwebs and a thick layer of dust that hid the dulled tapestries of red, black and gold which once contributed to the grandeur of the room that had been the secret court of Vlad Van Drak.

Walking around the table, he reached the far side of the room and took a seat at one of the dark thrones. He clasped his hands thoughtfully as he waited for the others to arrive.

One by one they came in, at first standing quietly and patiently waiting with him, then as more arrived, they formed small groups and began to chat amongst themselves. When the head of a bloodline arrived, he or she would seat themselves at one of the thrones and sure enough a gaggle of followers would spring up around them as the ancient room filled up.

All the Vampires here could trace their origins back to the Dark Prince himself and many of the ancient bloodlines had come to be feared just as much by the mortals above as the Van Drak line had. Many too were absent. The purges that followed Vlad’s demise had claimed many of the oldest Vampires. The Carvac and Orelian bloodlines had been completely extinguished, and the Van Drak line itself was reduced to just one; Vaas.

“Who are we waiting on then?” Cedric Olson cried out over the many chattering voices around the room.

“De le Grey, Avaalon, Severin and Von Richter by my count.” Rebekah Waldoff answered, calling out from her throne directly across the room from Olson.

The pair both looked at Van Drak expectantly. “We will begin momentarily.” He said ambivalently, his mind racing as to the reason for the lateness of the others.

All eyes turned to the entrance as Sydine Avaalon strode in, half a dozen other elven vampires at his side. The Avaalons were the last surviving bloodline of elven Vampires altogether, and even they would have destroyed one another in the wake of Vlad’s fall if not for Sydine’s own ruthless pragmatism, he was exceptionally well respected by the other pure-bloods and blood aside, was a capable leader. “I hope I’m not too late.” He let out whimsically. Tidying his long blond mane as he strode round to take the throne to Vaas’s left.

“Not at all.” Vaas replied, nodding to him.

Ava Severin entered next, her own entourage carrying platters of meat, grapes and wine for the other pure-bloods. Hers was one of the youngest bloodlines, bestowed during Vlad’s final year of unlife, in the years since the fall of the Ascendancy, the Severins had reinvented themselves as wine merchants and tavern owners, their business interests stretching from Franchea to Teustengrund. She took her seat quickly as her minions tended to the catering.

A few more minutes passed as the Vampires began to chat again and eat and drink leisurely, as if they were little more than mere humans. Of course there was one hunger Ava’s bounty wouldn’t quite stifle, and in the old days willing mortal followers of the Cult of the Living Dead would have offered their blood gladly to the Vampires at such gatherings.

Eventually Vaas rose to his feet and called them to silence. “Brothers, sisters, friends. I have called you here this night because of the recent attack on the cattle of Ancelstierre. It is clear from the reports that one of our number is responsible! Their actions will lead to heretofore unseen levels of paranoia and could reignite the purges of old; leading to our very extinction! As the rightful heir to the Ascendancy, I demand to know which of you is responsible and why!?”

There was silence across the room as the pure-bloods exchanged unsure glances. Then, from the entranceway a smooth voice retorted; “Well isn’t it obvious?”

Jacques de la Grey swanned into the light of the central fire with a quiet confidence as the other pure-bloods turned to look at him, his burgundy and gold suit of finery and long dark hair setting him apart from the other black robed Vampires who stood nearest the entrance.

“You?” Volker Graff asked from the throne on Vaas’s right.

“Me?” Jacques scoffed, “Of course not. Although I was delayed on the road in an attempt to ensure a fresh Golgothan garrison did not arrive in Syliv before this conclave could meet. You can thank me later.”

There were murmurs of unrest as the other pure-bloods shot cautious glances at Vaas. Cedric Olson gave voice to what they were all thinking, rising to his feet and slamming a pale fist down on the table; “Vaas, if you knew Golgothan troops were on their way here; you were foolish to invite us. If you didn’t; you were ignorant!”

Vaas scowled at Olson, but was grateful as Volker Graff cut in; “Sit down Cedric and let Jacques speak. If he wasn’t responsible for the random acts of violence at Ancelstierre I’d like to know who was!”

“Random acts of violence?” Jacques shook his head. “What a curious choice of wording. No, I don’t believe these attacks were random at all. I suspect they were orchestrated as part of a cunning plan by our absent friends from the north.”

“Von Richter!?” Rebekah Waldoff hissed. There were shocked whispers from across the room.

“Well it clearly wasn’t anyone here, and Hans did pay a visit to Ancelstierre a few months back, I thought he was just sniffing around to find out how strong the de la Grey bloodline is, but he could well have been plotting something more.” Jacques mused casually to himself as he walked over to an empty throne across from all of them and planted himself in it.

“If Von Richter is really behind this, what can we do about it? He hasn’t answered the call!” The usually pensive Gideon Lancel, who sat next to Volker Graff, stirred.

“The cattle will hunt for us. If a garrison is on the way that means witch hunters and then it’s only a matter of time before Carvania is unsafe for us.” Vaas let out, clearly irritated by this development as anger seethed through his voice. The other Vampires began to whisper frightfully amongst themselves.

“I have a plan.” Jacques said quietly. Watching as the other Vampires continued to mutter their fear and anger with Hans Von Richter. “We can use this to our advantage...” He added seeming thoughtful to the few who were listening.

Finally Sydine Avaalon knocked the hilt of his great elven sword against the stone table. “De la Grey has a plan. I suggest we listen.” He ordered and the muttering ceased. “You know what our next move should be, Jacques?”

Jacques smiled, if he’d won the curiosity of Sydine Avaalon then he’d easily win all of them. He smiled up at the unliving elf and casually removed a bit of dust from his fingernail.

Finally he answered smugly; “And then some…”
Last edited by Cheye on Thu Oct 12, 2017 4:07 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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Sarrin
Spokesperson
 
Posts: 138
Founded: Dec 21, 2016
Ex-Nation

The Battle of Galbridge Pass

Postby Sarrin » Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:22 pm

Galbridge Pass, 4E-150

Like a dam finally cracking, life poured through the Galbridge Pass after years of barren silence. At its helm was Jarl Clew leading a company of his 50 most loyal and well trained housecarl. Behind his troop was an enormous swarm of Garnians eager to at last see the new world their ancestors had once explored. While all Garnians were trained to fight to a comparable professional level Clew was grateful to have his housecarl with him especially as the King had nearly denied a military guard in case it appeared hostile. Clew however had insisted on an escort for the protection of the people in a worst case that his men join him and chosen carefully who to bring. The accompanying few were among his finest even within the housecarl each wielding an enormous Blood-Oak shield granting them near complete protection. All of this, Jarl Clew feared, would be necessary in the coming struggle as for the last day and a half smoke had been seen emerging from the sky in the direction of Morthin. Worse still horses had been heard further down the pass and scattered reports claimed unfamiliar men had been seen fleeing the camp leading many to fear an ambush awaited.

As they marched onwards the elected representative of the migrants, a Shaman named Nerian, moved up alongside the Jarl clearly at unease. Nerian was a talented shaman who had cultivated great respect in Garniem for his mastery of the Wilds Magics. Though they hadn’t required one the Garnian’s had chosen him to voice their concerns and desires to Clew during the voyage.

“There are murmurs among the people that this might turn violent Clew. Can I assure them we won’t have to fight?”

Clew continued looking on appearing stoic and unphased for a moment before taking a deep breath

“My men will be able to take whatever awaits us”

“And if we are met with an army”

Nerian spoke without hesitation in a tone any other realms nobility would likely have a peasant flogged for. Clew allowed a moment to pass again before speaking with weight that reflected the thought he had put into the matter.

“I will hold the line and you must ensure a messenger alerts the King… we will show that Garniem does not bow to foreign lords”
The pair continued along the path in near total silence making only sporadic idle talk for the next few hours as they approached the end of the pass. As Clew finally left the stone walls he seemed relieved at the lack of any visible threat.

“It seems the King was right Nerian, there is no great threat waiting for us after all, head back and alert the people we make camp at the mouth tonight and continue the final stretch to Morthin tomorrow”

Morthin was a day’s ride from the pass and already visible though a few hills stood in the way of its lower levels. Despite early signs no smoke could be seen from the walls though embers appeared to rise towards the east of it.

The Garnians began to unpack in the pass with the soldiers taking watch in the ancient towers carved into the side of the mouth. Despite all the fears and tensions it seemed tranquillity had finally descended onto the Garnians and they had indeed been welcomed by the world at large.

When Clew awakened from his slumber in the early hours of the morning he felt uneasy. He had spent much of the night escorting parties of Garnians to the forest so they could hunt and he at first suspected tiredness was the cause. Quickly though he found truth to his feeling as the great horns of the ancient towers boomed out through the pass alerting all to an oncoming threat. Clew swore under his breath and quickly equipped himself for battle. Garniem would face its first threat after all.

“Someone tell me what’s happening” Clew demanded as he approached his men at the helm of the camp Nerian following his arrival by moments.

“A force is approaching maybe 8000 in number, heavily armoured from the looks of it”

Clew scratched his chin “How long do we have before they reach us?”

“One or two hours, maybe less”

Clew cursed again and looked to Nerian first before ordering his men

“Take what you need from the near trees and attempt to seal the pass, my men will hold the line as we can. A messenger must reach the King. Gareth inform the Housecarl to form a shield wall across the mouth; we hold the line no matter what comes”

As he issued his orders the men began to perform drills preparing themselves for war and assemble in formation. Nerian slipped by them to the near grove and began taking the life force from the trees until his very being teamed with the dark green energy of the wilds. When he at last returned his eyes were teaming with power and he walked quickly past the lines of men now ready for war. He walked past Clew and towards the Garnians who had gathered in speculation before turning and thrusting his staff into the ground before him.

As Clew turned towards his men and began a rousing speech Nerian poured his energy into the staff allowing the twisted dark green thorn like stems of wilds magic to course through him and into its shaft. Across the ground thick spiked roots crawled to the surface and began to intertwine in each other as they climbed the walls. Each root threaded itself amongst the others strengthening the vile weave until not even sunlight could pass through it and the entire width of the pass became entangled and blocked by its presence. When at last the roots ceased growing Nerian collapsed on the floor exhausted and drained of much of his own essence. He was quickly taken to healers by the Garnians as the others began organising themselves into divisions in case the wall should fall. As Nerian was picked up he uttered a single sentence

“Send our fastest. The King must know. We are at war”
Last edited by Sarrin on Sun Apr 23, 2017 11:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Cheye
Envoy
 
Posts: 302
Founded: Jun 21, 2014
Capitalist Paradise

Postby Cheye » Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:57 pm

Unknown Location – 4E-150

Ava fought back a scream as the electricity suddenly flowed through her bones once more. It was not so much a scream of pain (the burning of the iron against her wrist she had long grown accustomed too), rather it was one of intense discomfort, irritation and most importantly; hunger.

The Vampires had been tied up in these excruciating positions for a long time. Since the Golgothans had captured her outside the City Palace she’d been down here, suspended in the air, in the same position, with no way to feed and no way to sleep between the constant electrocutions the mortals regularly applied. The only thing telling her that over a month had passed since the attack was the hunger that threatened to consume her mind, driving her to the brink of insanity. For a single drop of blood she would do anything...

As the burst of electricity died down she threw her head up, her filthy blonde hair flying back to reveal her dirt covered face. To think, apart from that one night at the brothel when he’d turned her and the next, in which she sated her newfound hunger; her entire unlife had been spent down here. It was hardly worth it…

“I’ll talk.” She wheezed.

The other Vampires hissed and spat and tried to kick up a fuss to drown her voice out, but as the witch hunter approached and flicked the lid off of a small vial of blood, they ceased, all of them inhaling sharply and watching with eyes wide as they realised it was relatively fresh.

“Speak and you can have this.” He said, it was as if he knew how much she wanted it. How much they all did.

Perking up she cleared her throat; “Above the tavern on Cassel Street… there’s a hidden brothel; Faey’s Favour… Madame Rosalind… She chose me for this…”

One way or the other, her hunger was about to end.

User avatar
Sarrin
Spokesperson
 
Posts: 138
Founded: Dec 21, 2016
Ex-Nation

The Battle of Galbridge Pass

Postby Sarrin » Mon Apr 24, 2017 1:08 am

Galbridge Pass, Morthin

“There has been a long tradition among the Clew family to speak with complete honesty to our men before a battle. If you are to die alongside us then you must be willing to fight with complete certainty in what you face. Though I suspect none of you will be surprised to hear that we are at a disadvantage”

Clew’s housecarl let out a brief laugh. They were organized into a shield wall covering the entire mouth of the pass while only two lines thick it ensured they were fully protected from the oncoming army now clearly visible and fast approaching.

“I see two clear ways that we are at a weakness here. First we number in 50 and they…slightly more but second and I feel more importantly, our god demands that if we die in battle we do him and our people proud. By contrast there god is some ceremonious torch”

Another chuckle spread through the ranks this one more reserved as the men clearly readied themselves for a likely death.

“If we each take five of their pathetic little heads with us to the Great Hunt I’m sure Morgath will reward us with a mighty feast and more so they will learn to rightfully fear our ranks again. We will fight this battle as men for we must preserve our nation’s secrets and if we die then we die for Garniem. TU’LOCK BRIGAR”

“TU’LOCK BRIGAR” the men shouted back while uncommon for Garnians themselves to speak in the old language this battle cry had continued to be prominent. Literally translating to “make them prey” it more accurately meant to kill your foe with such ferocity they are snatched from their afterlife and turned into prey in The Great Hunt. Alongside the cry the men began smashing their axe hilts against the back of their thick Blood Oak shields letting out an intimidating cry that was amplified by the acoustics of the pass. The Templars were nearly at their ranks and Garnian blood would once again nourish the land.

Syliv, Carvania

Cormac curiously watched the entrance to the ccatacombs with curiosity. He had transformed and faked a departure from Syliv shortly after his meeting with Francis only to return and watch Francis’ actions. He knew he would need to know as much as possible about Francis’ own attempts to court the Emperor to a celebration to ensure this went ahead especially with the tensions now in the air. From his various perches across the castle he had however observed many curious sites. Particularly the cloaked and sneaking figures entering the catacombs indeed even the high rate of bats and wolves to enter the catacombs would spark suspicion in anyone who knew to look. Worse still was the knowledge that these were not beasts of Morgath but of Isillion’s vermin.

He knew better than to enter the catacombs and while it would likely be greatly appreciate chose not to make even the slightest attempt to inform Francis. Instead he rotated his perches and watched the exits from the catacombs with curiosity.

City of Morthin, Morthin

Argus sat calmly in the throne of the Viscount-Elect of Morthin. His army had taken the city with relative ease after his agents infiltrated its grounds and opened the gates to his forces. All alarms had been eliminated and by the time the armies of the city had been alerted Templars filled the streets in overwhelming numbers. The leaders of the city had been thrown in the dungeons beneath the streets and the citizens placed under strict curfew granting the Templars complete control. As he read through his brief on the state of affairs he looked up to the messenger before him.

“I trust our forces have been dispatched?”

“Yes High Inquisitor, though we must be careful not to overextend ourselves till the Mar…New Grand Master makes contact”

Argus nodded knowing full well that the Marshall would never get word of these events. His agents had instituted a strict information quarantine and those alongside Saxon had orders to prevent him receiving any missives regarding the elimination of the Grand Master. The other Templars of course were unaware of this but Argus was the master now.

“Of course, any news on the beast of Morthin? Have we found him?”

The messenger gulped clearly at some unease from merely the thought of the creature

“No sign yet my lord but if reports are true he was released by Vlad centuries ago”

Argus nodded and looked back to his report knowing he had done Isillion great service in his actions and hoping that he would soon receive his reward.

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