Author Topic: The World of Azmodal  (Read 2507 times)

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RedVulnus

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #15 on: September 01, 2016, 08:00:47 pm »
Borrin nodded as he walked over to a smaller table set in one of the corners of the room. "I am glad you like her Majesty's gifts, though there is no need to send us with anything in return. As to her Majesty's concerns the secondary reason for us being here is to investigate the creatures underneath your capital. The court mages seek to determine if they are related to the creatures the Legion fights on the borders of the Mists."

He opened a small chest next to the table and retrieved a few documents that he put on the table. "Oh, I do believe I was told to request that this information remain confidential as well. Whilst we have a capable army we do not wish to invite any other kingdoms to think we are an easy target, and from my experience with the King of Harrowfeld they would most certainly perceive our situation as such."

Borrin then continued "We recently found a Dwarf on the borders of the mists as well, dying unfortunately. His last request was that we deliver this to you." He picked up a sealed document and offered it to Haralus. "His body is being transported here with my personal legion so that he may be mourned and buried by his family. Her Majesty wished to extend her sincere regrets that we could not aid him more than ensuring he was comfortable in his final moments."


The letter
Your Highness I write this as I sit beside one of my comrades, may his ancestors welcome him. We found something, what it is we do not know but the mage told us it reminded him of the crystal passed down in your family. We were attempting to make the item ready for transport when the monsters arrived.

Claws that tore straight through Dwarven armor and shells that only the strongest of blows could break. Many of us died, more were wounded, before we could kill the last of them. I am ashamed to say that we failed to bury our dead but to stay we felt would only invite death to come once more. I pray the ancestors forgive me for this, for the eyes of the dead held only contempt for our cowardice.

The comrade I sit beside stirs every so often and his lips part only to release screams of terror after another magical beast attacked us and drove some of us mad. The healers have told me to go and seek the help of the Imperials since we are close to their lands. I write this knowing that only death will await me but hoping that this will be received by you. Enclosed is an odd device I found while we explored that cursed site.

Signed: Thorn Northshield, son of the Noble house Northshield


The device contained within was a cylinder that was large enough to held comfortably in the hand and similar in diameter to the handle of an axe and was of a decent weight.
« Last Edit: September 01, 2016, 08:40:27 pm by RedVulnus »

ApatheticExcuse

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #16 on: September 01, 2016, 08:20:08 pm »
((I'll type up a reply shortly, but just a heads up, I edited my post talking about the mists thing to remove reference of it - the planned big raid, mind you, not the little expeditions. Didn't know what the other kingdoms would think about that, so I was gonna be sneaky after we deal with the catacombs and bring it up publicly them. I'm pretty sure you saw the post before I edited, so I might as well give a heads up that I edit pretty much everything at least once (though not that dramatically) and not to trust it till a little while after I post it. See, I did it to this one too!))
« Last Edit: September 01, 2016, 08:42:03 pm by ApatheticExcuse »
Gone. Cheers guys.

RedVulnus

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #17 on: September 01, 2016, 08:42:11 pm »
((Edited the post to reflect that fact, so now they merely found the dwarf and he requested that the letter be sent to you. I'll keep an eye out for edits from here on))

ApatheticExcuse

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #18 on: September 01, 2016, 09:54:43 pm »
((It's probably bad form, and I'm working on it. But yeah, heads up and all, hah))



Haralus folded the letter up, and placed it on the table next to the gifts. Hopefully word of the lack of burial doesn't make it back to us. The public would not be pleased to know their sons and brothers have been left to rot in the mud. He made a third mental note to disseminate a declaration that another expedition had been lost, but had died courageously and retrieved invaluable information, as well as some brief explanation as to why only a single body was returned. Funerals with honors for those souls, present or not. Even if there's a suspicion of our lack of progress, it's hard to argue with the King's money.

Turning back to the conversation at hand, he took a pause to inspect the cylinder. After a moment, he spoke. "I appreciate that, commander, and am sure the man's family will as well." Rolling the cylinder along his fingers, he continued, "The beasts beneath us have troubled our city throughout my bloodline's rule. My ancestors, wise and brave through they were, dug far deeper than a mortal should go. I know little of the beasts in the Mist, but do not see how the two could be connected. I suspect we shall find little more resides beneath our feet than an outmatched foe and treasures long abandoned and forgotten when my ancestors withdrew from the catacombs. Regardless, I do not object to your mage's studies, and offer full use of the School's resources and whatever else they may need." He looked Barrin in the eyes. "I would expect that any findings pertinent to our security and task will be shared with the scholars and mages in our own courts as well."

Setting the cylinder on the table, the King picks the letter back up, and hands it to the commander, motioning for him to read it. "This, however, presents more riddles than it solves. What do you know of the things in the Mist, and of these devices which he speaks of?" He watched the Imperial's face closely, attempting to discern any subterfuge or withheld information that may have been made apparent as he read through the letter.
Gone. Cheers guys.

RedVulnus

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #19 on: September 02, 2016, 11:45:57 am »
Borrin nodded and said "Our findings will be shared with your mages and scholars of course"

The man then read the letter with obvious interest. When he finished he looked up at Haralus and said "I've fought some of these creatures first hand. The crawlers is what the Legion calls those armored monstrosities, and even our weapons have trouble with them to an extent. I thought they might have trouble with Dwarven armor but it seems I was mistaken. As for one that drives men mad I've only ever seen one, and the entire battalion that fought the beast either died in battle or were later killed to end their suffering. We had to burn the damn things corpse too, one of the older members of the Legion said the thing would come back to life otherwise. There is also smaller creatures about the size of a dog that move fast. If they get a hold of someone they start slamming their little, sharp, pointed legs all over trying to find a hole in the armor."

Borrin seemed sincere in what he was saying so far and he continued "As far as devices, we have found containers that open with a specific type of magic energy, large contraptions that seemed to serve no obvious purpose, and large entrenched weapons. There are many different devices lost in the Mists, though this one..." He motioned towards the device sitting on the table "...I've not seen something so small. The handle of a weapon maybe, perhaps a small container. I'm afraid to admit I am no scholar on these things, I've had to be more focused on the military aspects of my postings however I can have someone come and attempt to determine what it is if you would like."

Borrin appeared to be telling the truth and giving you the information he had though undoubtedly there was more information to be had.

ApatheticExcuse

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #20 on: September 02, 2016, 05:29:33 pm »
The King listened to Borrin's description of the things in the Mist, nodding throughout, and his suggestions regarding the device. "I will have our mages investigate it's purpose, but any assistance would be welcome, seeing as you have qualified individuals on hand already for your investigations in the catacombs. It does not seem to be a stretch of the imagination to also assume it may react in some way with the artifact in my family's possession, though I think it prudent to try and ascertain what the nature of a potential reaction would be before having them in close proximity to eachother."

The King casually moved to the service bell rope in the corner while speaking, and gave it a sharp tug. A faint ring sounded from elsewhere in the inn, filtering up from the floor. "I could use a drink, could you? This inn has some of the finest selection in the city." Moving to one of the comfortably padded sofas adorning the room, Haralus took a seat.

"As you have your own mission here, and because your battle tactics are relatively foreign to the rest of the armies who've answered our call, we should perhaps take some time to discuss how your contingent will fit into the battle plan before our grand assembly tomorrow. I've seen to it that the other armies assembled are staffed with some of my officers. I would assume they would be of less value to your men, but as is fitting for any action taken by an outside force on Dwarven lands, I would attach a liason to your force to provide assistance where you may need it." And keep an eye on what your mages are doing down there. "Do you have any objection to this?"
Gone. Cheers guys.

RedVulnus

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #21 on: September 02, 2016, 08:48:47 pm »
Borrin moved one of the chairs in the room so that he could sit across from Haralus. "I have no issues with having a liason posted among my men. As for tactics you'll find that my men will prefer to be upfront in the formations though they will accept whatever position you deem appropriate.  We have three hundred Rangers, the men trained to use what the men of Harrowfeld decided to call fire spitters, four hundred shield bearers, one hundred berzerkers, one hundred duelists, and one hundred fire bearers."

The door opened and one of the Inn's staff members pushed a cart into the room full of refreshments and some snack food. He was followed by an Imperial soldier wearing a suit of heavy armor that caused his foot steps to sound heavy. His helmet was a cylindrical piece of metal that had two small circular gems instead of the usual eye slits. The server put two golden goblets on top of the cart and poured two cups. Borrin watched the Imperial soldier for a second before looking to Haralus and saying "I do apologize, the few of these men that are from my personal legion are overtly protective." He looked back at the soldier and said "Leave the poor man alone, it's surely disconcerting to be followed by an armed man."

The soldier turned to Borrin and bowed, then turned and bowed to Haralus before leaving while the server finished pouring the cups and setting them on the table along with the bottle. "Our finest Dwarven ale Your Highness." He said, before bowing and departing the room.

Borrin picked up his goblet and took a drink before saying "The only thing I will say towards the overall plans is that I know my men and I know they will desire to be upfront and the first into combat if possible. For some of them any less is to insult their honor. However they will follow whatever orders I give them for to do less would also be an insult to their honor. The berzerkers will charge out with disregard for anyone and anything while the Fire Bearers, well I really would suggest they be up front. I don't think the fire that they spew from their weapons will care if it lands on friend or foe. Aside from that the Rangers can be positioned with the crossbowmen, and the other infantry will fit in with other infantrymen."

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
((As a note fire spewing weapons are not unheard of though mechanical versions tend to be rarer since the magical counter part is both easier to use and can be adjusted more easily.

Also quick question: Does Haralus have any siblings?))

ApatheticExcuse

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #22 on: September 03, 2016, 02:20:36 am »
Haralus finished his drink, and took a few moments to ponder over the information the Imperial had provided, and decided no serious challenges would be presented in integrating the Imperials into the existing battleplan.

"I think we shall be met with great success once the battle commences." He stood up, and set his goblet on the table, exchanging it for the Imperial fire thrower. He held the weapon up, and turned to Borrin. "Now, if there is nothing else for us to discuss, I would greatly like to give this bit of technology a go while we have some daylight left. There is an archery range set up just outside of the city - would you honor me with your company and a demonstration?"




((Siblings.... it seems likely, but I hadn't really considered it. Let me think on that for a bit here.))
« Last Edit: September 03, 2016, 11:42:37 am by ApatheticExcuse »
Gone. Cheers guys.

RedVulnus

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #23 on: September 03, 2016, 03:07:49 pm »
Borrin set his now empty goblet on the table as well and stood. "I would be honored to show you how to use it."

Borrin walked to door and opened it for Haralus. The two made their way back out of the Inn and to the street where Haralus' entourage waited. The guardsmen of his entourage, along with a number of Imperial soldiers, were keeping a large group of dwarves at a distance away from the Inn but the shouts of one of them could be heard "How dare the King bring these outsiders, these gutless dogs who know not of honorable combat with sword and axe meeting! The tunnels are a Dwarven matter that should be handled by Dwarves!"

Haralus could see the Imperial soldiers and could tell they were eager for an excuse to turn this shouting match into open combat with their accusers. Even Borrin, who had been a calm and even headed man so far, seemed angered by the words. All he said however was "You would think I'd be used to this by now." Then to Haralus "I think your people will listen to you far better then me your Highness."

ApatheticExcuse

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #24 on: September 03, 2016, 08:30:01 pm »
With a nod, the King walked up to the cordon of guards separating the inn from the crowd, gently stepping through them and standing to address the crowd unimpeded by their protection. I knew this would come eventually, but didn't expect it to happen until it was time to divide the spoils. Well.

Raising his voice, he let out an authoritative bark which overpowered all other voices. "SILENCE!" His eyes searched the crowd, trying to pick out the loudest of the dissenters. "Who dares to question the will of the King? Do not hide behind your wall of anonymity - come forth and stand before me!"
Gone. Cheers guys.

RedVulnus

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #25 on: September 03, 2016, 09:41:45 pm »
A dwarf stepped forward and Haralus recognized him. He was Slade, a member of one of the more important noble families and one which Haralus has had trouble with in the past, becoming especially vocal after the second expedition in which several of his brothers were lost. He was also rather drunk based on how he was walking.

"I question you, you who invite outsiders into a strictly dwarven matter, you who sends our brothers on fruitless adventures, you who invite these..." He gestured towards the Imperial soldiers "...dogs who know not what true combat is. I question you who saw my brothers sent to the mists when you knew only death would come!"

Several members of the crowd echo agreement though many of them are rather obviously in differing stages of drunkenness.

ApatheticExcuse

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #26 on: September 03, 2016, 11:23:54 pm »
Ah, Slade. I should have suspected - finally, after enough drink, he has the courage to face me with his grievances rather than continuing to scheme and whisper them in shadow. Haralus had always had little patience for the noble houses, a few of which had no understanding of his quest to understand the Mist and the threats there-in. While he'd always preferred frank, open conversation, he had not become King without having some skill in out-talking his opponents. Particularly drunken cowards.

"Slade Stoneburrow! I expected fully that you would have an objection to this course of action, but had also expected you would have come to me as a valued advisor, much as your father was to mine. I did not expect you to give 'counsel' while under the effects of a fine ale, with a mob at your back. You do me a personal dishonor to ignore our traditions and protocols, and to raise such issues in the presence of outsiders." His words were sharp, pointed things, and he could tell that the implication of a dishonorable action had only stoked Slade's anger. Good.

His tone softened, becoming more tactful if no less authoritative. "But it is of no consequence. Much as my ancestors did, stretching back to Terranus Thornbeard, first Guardian of the Rock, I believe it is well within the right of a learned noble to question his King, and offer solutions to the troubles facing the Realm. It is your right as my subjects to understand why things have come to pass, and where our future lies."

He looked around at the rest of the crowd, making eye contact with as many of them as possible, and continued: "I see many friends in this crowd, and it saddens me to know that my people are so filled with fear that they have let their faith in our power falter, and their belief in the strength of our friendships with the other Realms fall to the wayside. This is not what I have worked for, or what my father has worked for, or what his father before him worked for."

"I ask this of any man here - when has the Highlands not answered the call of our allies? When the so-called 'Chosen Kingdom' fell into dark times, making war against their cousins and the kingdoms of men, who answered their call for aide?"
He paused, and then, his tone turning into a roar, cried "THE HIGHLANDS!"

"When the men of Harrowfeld were under siege by the forces of the dark mage Azurdal, and no other would assist them, who stood by their sides on the wall and helped carry the day? Was it not DWARVEN STEEL and DWARVEN MIGHT that ended that vile wizard and his damned legions?"

"And when the fell monsters of the Northern Conclave took it opon themselves to rule all of Azmodal, and it seemed all hope was lost and no other could stand in their way, who amongst the mortal Realms stood fast and led the charge, turning back the tides of evil on the VERY GROUND OPON WHICH WE STAND?" Was it not OUR FATHERS AND OUR GRANDFATHERS WHO HALTED THE GREEN MENACE?"

His voice softened again. "My friends, I do not call on our allies because I feel the Highlands are weak. I do not call them because our warriors, the finest in all Azmodal could not crush the foulness beneath our feet unaided. No, I call opon our comrades because I know that our people have always been there when needed. How many of us have lost ancestors, relatives, and good friends to the wars of our allies? How many dwarves have gone on to look down opon us from the Hereafter on battlefields far from their homes? Can any honorable man here say we were wrong, and our forefathers were wrong, to give help to those who were in a time of need?" He looked around again, not expecting a response.

"I do not call on our allies out of weakness. I call opon them because together we stand stronger than any one nation alone. I call on them to repay our lost brethren for their service. And because we are strong, because we are honorable, and because our allies are noble, just creatures, they have chosen to answer that call! They do us an honor with their actions, much as we have done them an honor many times in the past! Would any true Dwarf have it but any other way?"

He looked at Slade again, and spoke to him directly, though loud enough for the others to hear. "Would you, Slade Stoneburrow, question the honor and reason of all the Dwarves who have come before us?" His tone changed again, now sounding more like a lecturer at the School, and he motioned behind him, at the Imperial soldiers. "You, more than any other man here, more than even I, should understand the threat the things in the Mist represent. And yet, these men, who have left their homes defenseless to the beasts within the cloud to come to our aid, to stand by us and face death willingly - you would call them 'dogs'? You would call them 'dishonorable'?"

The King shook his head slightly. "These men do us a great service, and will continue to do so - it matters not with what they fight." Stopping for a moment, Haralus attempted to empathize with the impetuous fool before him, as much as it was distasteful. This is not the time or place to discuss my goals in regards to the Mist, but I do not expect this fool will be placated without words towards it.

"I am saddened by the loss of your brothers, as much as loss of my own brother saddened me. The toll the Mist has taken on all our brothers and fathers has been harsh, but it is not in vain. We do not understand what threats are contained therein, and without understanding, we cannot hope to face whatever demons may emerge from it. Your brothers understood this threat, and heeded the call, much as did mine." He looked up at the rest of the crowd again. "Our efforts to unmask the terrors of the unknown have not been in vain, nor will they be forgotten. We will face Death in the Mists as we have it many times before, and again, it will tremble to hear our names. I swear this opon my Throne. Now, what say you, fellow Highlanders? Shall we spend this day arguing in the streets, or shall we feast and celebrate our friendships and coming victory?"

Quieting yet again, and speaking so that only Slade, and at most the nearest few men could hear him, he said "For one who speaks of honorable combat, you have not heeded the call yourself, dear Stoneburrow. I expect you will remedy this by joining us in the Catacombs in the coming days. I would not celebrate too hard this evening."



((Roll them dice and hopefully don't riot! Lulz. Edits for spelling.))
« Last Edit: September 03, 2016, 11:44:52 pm by ApatheticExcuse »
Gone. Cheers guys.

RedVulnus

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #27 on: September 03, 2016, 11:39:53 pm »
Slade stared at Haralus for a moment before sighing and saying "You are right my King, I should not air grievances in the open air, and much less should I do so while drunk and gather a mass to do so. I apologize to you and our honorable guests and will join you in the Catacombs. I shall go and prepare myself."

Before much more could be said the noble left and the crowd began to disperse, though many went back towards the bar. One of the imperial soldiers spat off to the side and turned to his compatriot saying "This is how they treat us when we heed the call of their King?" The other shook his head and the Imperial soldiers went back to their posts.

Borrin shook his head and looked to Haralus "That could have turned out worse. Reminds me of what happened when I returned home from my first assignment with the Legion. In any case shall we go to the archery range or do you now have more pressing matters?"

______________
((With that post the only way you could have failed would have been if I rolled a 1))

ApatheticExcuse

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #28 on: September 03, 2016, 11:51:14 pm »
(("We'll fight them on the beaches" and shit, right? :P))



Haralus smiled at the commander. "I apologize for them, Borrin. That one means well in his own mind, but is ignorant of the world. Pay him no thought - a strong lashing, even from the tongue, is as much as he deserves." Through the giant cave's entrance, the sun was beginning to turn a warm orange as it moved towards the horizon. "Unless you feel you should remain here to encourage your men after this disrespect, I'd still enjoy a demonstration of this weapon of yours before the day is through."
Gone. Cheers guys.

RedVulnus

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Re: The World of Azmodal
« Reply #29 on: September 04, 2016, 01:07:17 am »
Borrin looked back at his men and shook his head "They will be fine. Angry, but fine. All the more reason for them to go into the tunnels and show those who doubt their capabilities."

The two of you, followed by Haralus' entourage and two Imperial soldiers, walk to the Archery range, conversing about minor things of no consequence. When you reached the archery range Borrin motioned to one of the soldiers who produced one of the Fire Throwers and handing it to Borrin. "I must admit it has been some time since I last used one of these, I favor the sword over them honestly."
The soldier that had given him the weapon put a small bag on the table in front of you two before stepping back. Borrin opened the bag and pulled out a small magic infused crystal and inserted it into a small slot in the weapon. "These provide the propulsion that sends the projectile at such high velocity into it's target. The weapons are designed to channel the energy in these crystals, if there were a fault in how it's made the weapon will detonate in it's user's hand."

He took a metal ball that the other soldier offered him and inserted it into the barrel before taking a small ram rod and pushing the ball to the back of the barrel. "The sights on the weapon are designed to be accurate up to a specific distance, in the case of the weapons we have they are accurate up to two hundred and fifty feet."

Borrin took aim at one of the more distant targets and fired the weapon. A deafening boom sounded over the range as smoke and fire flew out of the end of the weapon. As his hearing returned Haralus heard many of the men nearby cursing and saw several backing away. Haralus also took note of how Borrin braced himself before discharging the weapon.

Borrin pulled the crystal from the weapon and let it fall to the ground. Haralus saw what appeared to be some coming off the crystal and how it seemed to decay. He handed the weapon back to the soldier and the man showed Haralus how to properly use the weapon step by step.

 

NOCTIFER IS A FAGGOT