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Battle at the Gates of White Stone -Prologue

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Note: The prologue does not yet get into the battles at White Stone City, but tells of what happens before hand that lead up to the invasion. Chapter 1 and 2 are undergoing editing at this time, but I will post them soon enough.

 

Another Note: I'm not sure if that's the name I want to stick by.... it's not very creative. If the prologue gets good reviews, I'll rename it and continue writing.

 

*Warning: It's kinda long, SORRY! ... but I couldn't help myself. :P *

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Prologue

 

“What do you think it could be,†asked Nabar, General of the Elves of the Lake. Bosla, second in command, peered down the snow covered mountain to the forest below. The tips of the trees were patched with white in the winter’s blizzard. A crash sounded, a few yelps of distress cried out, then a steady stream of smoke was raising through the air.

 

“What ever it is, it looks like they’re having trouble getting it built. That will surely buy us plenty of time to get a spy down there.†Bosla murmured. He spun around to the path they had traveled to see that the blizzard had covered their footprints. His ears, slightly sticking out of the cap attached to his white winter coat, fell down a bit. He turned back to Nabar, who had noticed it too.

 

“What are we going to do now, commander,†Bosla asked. “The blizzard’s covered up our path.â€

 

Nabar knelt down to pick up a handful of snow. He raised it to his slightly pointy nose, which showed red in the cold, and sniffed. “We’ll have to rely on our instincts.†Bosla’s ears twitched slightly, a little uncertain about his commanders methods. But even so, they had no other choice.

 

Another crash and bang rang through the air, and the commander went racing back up the snowy mountainside. The steady beat of a war drum could barely be heard through the explosions taking part in the forest. More smoke rose from the deciduous canopy. The blizzard sent more snow down, impairing their vision.

 

“We need to go now, before this gets any worse. Besides, we need to inform the others of their progress.†Nabar took one last glance down the slope of the mountain, then turned to the path. “Let’s go.â€

 

 

 

 

 

At the Palace courtyard, troops were assembled in full uniform. Their pointy ears were slightly red in the chill of the winter air, yet their spirit was flying high. At the front of them all, Nabar looked to Bosla, Bosla looking to the High Priest.

 

The High Priest was just about to open his mouth as a small elf, must only be about 9 years, came running through the Palace Gates. He was carrying a piece of parchment, rolled up and sticking out of his tan coat pocket. His cap flew over his head in the winter winds. They were pretty bad this year, having knocked over the tents of the camp nearest the river. The troops stationed there had to join the others back at the palace, their tents having been blown across the river.

 

The messenger handed the parchment letter to the Commander, who quickly opened it. After reading it thoroughly through several times, his expression turned into a frown. They now knew who their enemy was, and it brought devastation into his mind.

 

He looked back at the boy, dropping two gold coins into his cupped hands. “Thank you, boy, you’ve done well,†he was going to say, but the boy had already taken off, having pocketed the gold coins as he bolted out the Palace Gates.

 

Bosla lightly tapped Nabar’s shoulder and asked, “Is everything all right? What’s happening? Have we identified our attackers?†The Palace had undergone a series of violent raids of mysterious men that kept to the shadows, sneaking into the inner chambers and killing who ever they met along the way. Soon after, they had received a letter with sloppy handwriting spelling out the words, TO THE DEATH WE WILL FIGHT!

 

Nabar slowly brought his eyes up from the parchment letter. “Our… our attackers are armies of Kildroy, set in camps of two thousand. Their camps stretch to the southern corners of the forests.â€

 

Bosla gasped at this. The Kildroy were Giants that had taken up alliance with Cyclops raiders and had formed a clan of their own. But their camps stretching to the southern corners of the forests meant that they had been recruiting for quite some time. Enough time to gather into millions. Surely this had to be some mistake.

 

“Are you sure, Nabar? Did they survey correctly?†asked Bosla, his voice slightly shaky.

 

“I’m positive…,†he said. Nabar, being the elf he is, was always sure of everything.

 

“And what of the crashing and smoke? What are they building?†Bosla asked, not so sure he really wanted to know.

 

This time, Nabar shook his head and sighed. “That’s still uncertain… but we do know that their prisoners are set to work. They’ve captured Dwarf and Human refugees in that area. They’ve been spotted near the river with scars and cuts on their backs. They’ve been nearly completely removed of clothing. The only thing they have on is what they’ve described to me as fur pants. It says many have died in the blizzard of the cold.†Bosla looked up at the sky, feeling the snow land on his face then melt away.

 

“We only have an army of six thousand… we’re dangerously outnumbered,†Bosla informed Nabar. “Nabar? What do we do?â€

 

“You are heading to the docks to sail to White Stone City. We need more soldiers. Of any race, we need the numbers.†Nabar was not looking at Bosla as he spoke, but looked somewhere into the sky. “May the God’s help us.â€

 

 

 

 

It took nearly a day and a half of planning the attack on the Kildroy armies. What they needed now was a quick return for Bosla and the White Stone City aid. Nabar looked over to the High Priest and sighed. The High Priest only shook his head sadly, turned away, and left the chamber. Seconds later a messenger arrived, this time it was a human dressed in fine blue fur robes with a pointed hat perched atop his head. He set a roll of parchment down upon the elven Commander’s desk and left without collecting a reward for his trip. Nabar looked down and picked up the letter and spread it out across his desk.

 

 

 

 

Commander Nabar of the Elves of the Lake,

 

We give you word that the Kildroy armies have now pushed their territory beyond the forests. They’ve invaded our village and destroyed our homes. We are now heading toward your gates.

 

With regards,

Commander Zalza Olane

Followers of Kor, God of Virtue

 

 

 

 

Nabar shook his head. He knew that their time was running out, but he never anticipated their attack to happen so soon. After about three minutes of silence in which he sat at his desk, rubbing his temples, the palace horns rang through the cobblestone streets and up to the palace. Their human visitors have arrived.

 

The commander strolled down the streets, the clicking of his boots on the stony road barely noticeable in the blowing wind. The blizzard had calmed some, but not by much. It took several elves to a street to shovel the snow from the road. This had to be done each hour; else they just might be waists deep in snow right now.

 

The city gates were locked right now, in case the Kildroy armies pushed to their boundaries. Nabar reached the gate and stuck out his hand. The human at the front the group gently shook it. Nabar took several moments to observe the human villagers, especially their leader, whose face was in shadow behind her shabby fur cap and robe. The others were dressed in a similar fashion, yet gave off a poorer appearance. Their leader stepped back a few paces, then reached up to reveal her face, brushing aside long, pale yellow hair. A woman gazed up at the elven commander.

 

Nabar gasped in surprise. “A female leader?†he asked shortly.

 

The woman scrunched up her face in question. “Yes. Do you not have female leaders in your village?â€

 

He smiled lightly, “Our women our the leaders of the household, more or less. But we do not have our village under the leadership of a female. It’s just not done around these parts. The head of our village is the High Priest. There are two other priests under him, but they look to him to make final decisions… we run our village under the will of the gods.â€

 

She smiled back in understanding, then turned to face her people. They took off their caps and gave her their attention. All was silent.

 

“We will take refuge in this village, under the commander’s grace. I will discuss what needs to be done with him at this time.†She then turned back to face the Elf. “You will allow us to stay in your village, won’t you?â€

 

He nodded slightly, then signaled for the gates to raise. He led the leader into the city streets, her people following in three straight lines. They are disciplined and would definitely aid our army, the commander kept thinking to himself as they neared the Village Square. Elves of all types came out of shops and homes to see the humans.

 

Nabar turned to the human leader and said, “We shall discuss matters within the palace walls. There are more import things to attend to… but we can’t discuss them here.†He grabbed her hand, and led her to the palace steps.

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Chapter 1

 

An abrupt stop gave Bosla the notion that the transport ship had stopped, and he walked up the stairway to the deck above. It had taken about a day it seemed, and the moon showed bright in the starry sky. He could tell from its location in the sky that it was about 3:00 in the morning. Weariness formed in his eyes, but his orders were to get aid immediately. He walked over to K’Vol, the captain of the ship.

 

“Do not leave this dock, I will be back shortly,†ordered Bosla. “Here’s a few gold coins… for the trouble.â€

 

“Aye, we shall wait,†the captain replied, nodding his head. His ruddy red hair stuck oily to the side of his face. His fur robes didn’t have a hood, and his lips had a bluish-tint. His ear’s, slightly fuzzy, were drooping and the left one had a hole near the tip. This elf looked as though he could use all the gold he could get.

 

Bosla decided it was enough waiting around, so he pulled his hood back over his head and marched off the ramp onto the snow covered dock. Lakeside Village was screened in white, the village rooftops still collecting snow as the blizzard fell. He trudged on over the snow, kicking his legs up as he went. The snow was packing now, and it was almost halfway up to his knees. As he went up further ahead he saw a patch of grass rise up out of the snow and a wooden walkway, the lake on both sides. He tried to make his way over to it, but tripped and fell.

 

“Damn! I can’t see a thing in this mess,†he said as he struggled to get back up, his hands numb. He brushed the snow off of him and began to plod on. He stepped onto the wooden planks and looked around him. The snow had piled up on the rocks, and ice was being carried downstream. He turned and looked ahead of him. Barely visible in the snowy blanket, a path snaked its way north to a group of buildings.

After falling several times he found himself at the village general store. Unfamiliar with this area, he decided he would ask for directions to White Stone City.

 

 

 

 

 

As Nabar and the human, Zalza Olane, climbed up the marble steps of the palace, several crashes broke out near the city gates. Nabar didn’t need to turn around and look to know it was the Kildroy invasion they had been expecting. He continued up the stairs, a little hastily, and burst through the tall oak doors. He grabbed the human’s hand and took her, struggling, up the stairs and into the counsel room. The High Priest himself was sitting in his throne; his eyes closed in concentration. After a few moments, he turned to the commander and the human, who were both looking fixedly up at him from the bottom of the steps. The other two priests were there by his side, sitting in smaller thrones to his left and right.

 

The High Priest rose from the mighty chair and walked down the steps of the marble platform. He was wearing a deep red robe. He looked a few seconds at the human then strode gracefully, as a king would, to the window to his right.

 

“The invasion begins. Has the White Stone aid arrived yet?†he asked. His voice was calm, soothing.

 

“No, High Priest. We are still in wait. I…†Commander Nabar was about to continue when another crash, louder and more devastating came. The High Priest bowed his head as horrible growls and snarls drowned the screams of the villagers, human or elf uncertain. The Kildroy were advancing through the streets, most likely heading toward the palace. The priest lowered his head and knelt in prayer, consulting the gods of what to do.

 

After a few moments of silence, worried looks exchanged from the Nabar and Zalza, the priest rose and looked at the commander. “Our aid will not arrive in time. The gods have instructed me to abandon the City of the Lake, and move our forces to White Stone. White Stone is under attack as we speak; the Kildroy have pushed their armies further than we anticipated. The gods will hold off the enemy forces as we leave.†He sighed then turned to the human. “We do not have enough men to finish off this threat, even with the power of the gods. We need your people to fight. Will you join our forces?â€

 

“We will. They have sent raids in and destroyed my village. They must pay for that. We will fight.†She clasped her fist and brought it over her chest. The High Priest smiled at this gesture and nodded.

 

“We leave now, Commander Nabar.â€

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bosla ran down the western path past the Elvaro Mountains as fast as he could. Screams could be heard coming from the city. From somewhere behind him, a Cyclops grunted. It’s going to come after me any second now, he thought, and sure enough there were ground shaking thuds as the Cyclops ran awkwardly after him. Bosla was having many difficulties running in the snow, which was now almost past his knees. It slowed him down considerably, and the Cyclops wasn’t having that much luck either.

 

The elf, ears lowered and poking out of his furry hood, turned as he pushed on to see the Cyclops shaking his fists furiously at him, waving a club. His eye was fixed on him, veins on pulsing on the off-white surface in rage. It let out a nasty snarl. Bosla whipped his head back to facing front, and trudged as fast as he could.

 

As he neared the city gates, he saw a dead deer’s head poking out of the snow, lying on a boulder. Flies had gathered around it, the putrid smell burning in the elf’s sensitive nose. He tried to ignore it, the Cyclops still after him.

 

At the gate, there was another Cyclops walking through the gate, grunting as people in the streets scurried into buildings around them. The cobblestone roads were almost free of snow, making it easier for Bosla to creep around the Cyclops in front of him without being seen. Elves were stealthy, and he managed to give the Cyclops behind him the slip as he hid around the gate’s corner. He decided he would slip into a shop ahead of him when the Cyclops had passed him.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The High Priest led Nabar and Zalza outside and down the snow covered marble steps. The two other priests followed suit, books and rolls of parchment clasped in their arms. They were heading toward the eastern docks. The only way to get there was to travel the eastern roads of the village. That would mean they would be in the center of the battle.

 

Up ahead they could see that their soldiers had already begun to fight; arrows were flying and swords were slashing. One swift arrow, fired by an elf named Keedrick, sailed straight into the right eye of a giant, who in turn sent his club spinning around wildly. The rogue giant knocked down the tavern, sending stone crashing into several unfortunate villagers.

 

The High Priest didn’t seem to be aware of any of this. He kept walking at a swift pace down the cobblestone path. When they had reached the city streets, a boulder was sent sailing from a Cyclops to their right.

 

“Do not fear. We are under the protection of the gods. Nothing can hurt us,†the priest behind Zalza informed. The blizzard was still falling hard, and overhead the clouds began to darken and swirl. The wind, changing direction abruptly, sent chills of uncertainty creeping up Nabar’s spine. The rotating clouds above began to descend from the sky slightly, forming a funnel. It dropped again, getting lower, the wind spinning faster.

 

Snow that was on the ground began to blow in every direction, adding to the falling flurry. Everything was white. Suddenly, a man with a bow in his hands ran into Nabar.

 

“Commander?†he asked loudly.

“Yes… listen. Spread the word for our forces… and the human’s, to load up on the transport ships. We are sailing to the Lakeside Docks!â€

 

The archer sped off to spread the word. The funnel cloud dropped again, taking up a Cyclops and throwing him into General Store. Stone littered the snowy streets. All was a mess. The sky began to darken more, lightning lashing through the sky.

 

“We’re almost there!†was the shout of the High Priest. The unmerciful winds blew his robes about. His beard was in his face as he pushed ahead, and he took out a small stick, at least a foot long. Raising it in the air, it became a staff, engraved in runes and symbols. He brought it crashing down into the snow, and the diamond at its tip lit with a pale blue glow. It was as if the wind had stopped, the snow had stopped falling.

 

Nabar looked around to find the wind was still blowing hard, the snow still falling. As he looked above him, a small bubble had formed over them. The snow at their feet was pushed out, the cobblestones fully visible now. Zalza looked around, clearly amazed, and then turned to Nabar.

 

“We had heard of your magic, the elvish magic… but we clearly never imagined anything like this.â€

 

“Do you not have mages, your people?â€

 

“Yes… but I’ve never seen anything like this.â€

 

“This magic is used from the gods through the High Priest. You see, the light in his staff is the power of the gods, a gift from them.â€

 

“Oh…†Zalza muttered, as they continued walking, the battle still raging out outside the bubble. Their filmy covering traveling over them, they turned onto the path that led to the docks. A shadow fell over them, and Zalza, first to notice, looked up. A large boulder was soaring through the snowy screen in their direction. She cringed and fell back into Nabar as it hit the bubble. She opened her eyes to find she was still alive and Nabar’s arms around her. She shifted uncomfortably, and backed away from him.

 

“Umm… what happened?†she asked, confused. “We should be squished right now.â€

 

The High Priest lightly placed a hand on her shoulder.

 

“The protection of the gods… this bubble, kept the boulder from harming us. It slid off of the bubble and landed right over there. See?â€

 

She approached the oil like wall of the bubble, and looked out. The snow impaired her vision, but she could see a small jet of rock sticking out of the snow. She nodded, turned around, smiled, and then started laughing.

 

“Heh… I thought we were surely going to get squashed!â€

 

“We’d better start on again. War has broke loose at White Stone as we speak, and we need to get there as soon as we can. The gods are helping there as well, protecting the city from damage, but I don’t know for how long.â€

 

They walked in silence for a few minutes until they had at last reached the wooden docks, dozen transport ships lined up. A man aboard the ship at their front waved to them, barely visible, and the High Priest lowered the protective bubble.

 

Zalza sighed with relief as they boarded the ship, Nabar leading her below the deck and out of the storm. The three priests followed suit.

 

Now, on to White Stone, thought Commander Nabar, leader of the forces of the Elves of the Lake.

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You 'hate' it a high nine?

 

Lol. k.

 

:P

 

Anyways, thanks for the comment and rating. I was worried at first people wouldn't even read it. Lol.

 

I'm still working on chapter 2 with editing n' stuff. It's coming along nicely. I might even have it posted at the end of the day. Who knows.

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I think its great,not many stories can hold my extremly short attention span, but after your constant threats i read it and i like it :)

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Sorry that I havent posted the rest of the chapters in a while... it's just that I'm grounded, and have been sneaking onto the computer to forum surf.

 

:sighs:

 

I'll post the chapters the second I can.

 

Thank you.

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Again, I apologize for not posting these much MUCH sooner, but I have been having issues in my life that needed tending to, and haven't had the chance. But, now that I DO have that time, here they are!

 

:)

 

Enjoy.

 

 

 

Chapter 2

 

 

 

Commander Nabar and the human, Zalza Olane, sailed their way across the sea. Their fleets followed them, their formation like a V. But something was itching at Nabar. Something’s not right, kept popping into his mind. They were both down below the deck, their transport ship at the front of the fleet. He looked over at Zalza, who lay perched on a long, mahogany cabin chest. Looking up from her book, The adventures of Neil the Dwarf, she tilted her head in question. The elf had a strange look in his eyes, and his ears were slightly lowered.

 

“Err… is there something wrong, Commander,†she asked politely. She didn’t have much experience with elvish customs and courtesy, so she kept to the basic formality of his occupation. The humans of her village never had much contact with those of a different race.

 

The commander shook his head, “I’m not sure.†He looked down at his hands and started twiddling his thumbs. The thought was nerve racking, and he felt a bit queasy. “I need some fresh air.†He got up and walked slowly up the stairs leading to the upper deck.

 

The moment he opened that wooden door he felt like stepping back inside to the confined warmth below the deck. The snow-mingled air was brutal, and his nose began to run almost immediately under his fur hood.

 

“LAND!†came the cry from the captain, who was staring from gold optics in his hands. The Lakeside Dock came into view from behind the snowy haze. Nabar sighed in relief. He hated being cold; he never really did like being hot either. He walked up the left steps to the upper-deck and went up to the captain.

 

The captain lent Nabar his optics, and peering through them he could see branches of trees behind a white blanket. Several spots on the wooden dock were snow free, yet wet. Snow everywhere else must have reached nearly waist high.

 

“This is going to be difficult,†Nabar said aloud, not meaning to. The captain only shrugged, not looking at him.

 

“What’s it to me? You’re the one going out there,†he chuckled, then walked off to tend to a short yet stout elf at the back of the ship. Nabar glanced his way, and he could see the shadowy-gray silhouettes that were his soldiers and the human forces. The snow nearly doubled in amount as it fell, impairing what little vision they had. Nabar decided he would leave this to the ship’s crew, and he began descending the stairs to the lower deck.

 

Zalza looked up as the commander made his way below the deck, closing the door behind him. He sat back down in his chair, and looked up at her. “The falling snow has almost doubled… I can hardly see a thing out there. And we’re about to dock the ships. This troubles me.â€

 

“Why so, Commander Nabar?â€

 

“Please, just call me Nabar. Formalities are only used by my soldiers.â€

 

“As you wish, Com… err, Nabar.â€

 

Nabar smiled and tended to papers laying about the desk in front of him. Again, his thoughts kept pouring into his mind. Something’s not right… it’s just not right.

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Chapter 3

 

Bosla entered the building looming overhead, careful to avoid attracting a nearby Cyclops’s attention. He entered the dimly lit room and slowly shut the red door behind him. He turned around to find he had entered a local tavern, crammed with creatures of every sort, not caring to give him their attention. They were all whispering amongst themselves, careful of what they said. He overheard a nearby dwarf couple, deep in conversation.

 

“And did you see how tall that troll was,†started the female. She had blonde hair, curly, that reached just below her broad shoulders. She was sitting at a nearby table, her husband at the other side facing her. Her pickaxe was lying next to her arms, which were up in the air, her hands waving about as she chattered on.

 

“Yeah…†was her husband’s reply.

 

“And what about that Cyclops that was working on bashing the eastern gates with that club of his? I thought nothing could break the gate’s bars.â€

 

“Yeah…†came his reply once more.

 

Bosla decided to make his way up to the front of the tavern, where a bartender was busy handing out mead and ale to his already drunken customers. How can people drink right now when there are creatures destroying their city, thought Bosla, his ears lowering in frustration.

 

A fight broke out to his left; a rather large shirtless human pushed a mangy looking elf, which went sailing into Bosla. The elf stood up, swaying, and almost absolutely stoned. He let out a string of nonsense words, turned, and pushed through the crowd to a corner where could vomit. Shouts rose, and women screamed as he sprayed the walls. Bosla shook his head in disgust, wondering why the commander would send him to this city for aid.

 

 

 

At the Lakeside Docks, soldiers were pouring from the transport ships and onto the wooden planks. The howling wind joined with the roaring sea as the blizzard raged on. Commander Nabar stepped out onto the deck of his ship, Zalza Olane following at his heals.

 

Nabar looked out to his soldiers in pride, as Zalza looked over the humans. In all, they had over 3,000 men and elves. For the battle ahead, they would need more of an army. Nabar sighed to Zalza, who sighed back knowingly, and they marched the army toward the White Stone City gates.

 

 

 

Back at the tavern, where Bosla sat looking out of the window, song broke out through the endless shouting. Pretty soon, everyone was joining in the old dwarfish drinking jig. Mugs were raised high, mead, ale, and wine spilling about the floor. A rogue mug sent ale sloshing down Bosla’s back, soaking his fur cloak.

 

But he had his attention to the formations of Cyclops and Trolls that were patrolling the street. If he could only get his timing right, he could slip out of the tavern and make his way to the Northern City by way of the narrow alleys.

 

 

 

Waist up in snow, the elf and human army pushed onward. Nabar and Zalza were leading the troops, the elves in one line behind Nabar, the humans behind Zalza. The soldiers were silent, concentrating on the person in front of them. The snow was like a dense sheet of white in front of their eyes.

 

“I see something up ahead,†said Nabar to Zalza. She strained her eyes against the falling snow, and she could see a bleary shadow moving up ahead of them. It had a pinkish tint to it, what ever it was. “Let’s catch up to it… see what it is. And by the gods I sure hope it’s friendly.†Zalza nodded, and they trudged faster.

 

The shadow grew taller and taller, and more and more stout. A darker shadow was at its side, and before Nabar knew it, he ran straight into its back. The creature in front of them reeled around, and swung what ever it was at its side around, knocking Nabar flying out of the snow, and back into his soldiers.

 

Zalza drew out a small staff, and with a flick of her wrist it grew in length. She now wielded a cuarterstaff, and was whacking madly against the creature’s leg. The blizzard suddenly stopped, the wind gave one last gust then remained still. The snow cleared from the air to reveal the ominous shadow was a rather large Cyclops, swinging its club around his head and readying itself for another blow. Its eye started to swirl, his attention on the spinning club. Confused and dizzy, it fell backward with a roar. It slipped trying to get up, and fell back into the snow.

 

The armies took this opportunity to lash out, and soldiers (man and elf) leapt upon the disturbed creature, bringing spears crashing down into its hard flesh. Bows fired, and one of the arrows clipped the Cyclops’s eye. The off-white ball spun around in pain, blinking furiously. Nabar drew his sword, swung it over his head, and stabbed it into the layers of flesh, and into its heart.

 

Its eye quit spinning, it stopped roaring, and it lay still. The commander withdrew his sword, wiped the blood off in the snow, and then brought his hand up in victory. Zalza flicked the staff once more, it’s length shortening. Every soldier, human and elf, cheered over their defeat, forgetting that there would be many more to kill than just this one.

 

Zalza smirked and laughed. “You know, Nabar, they are fast to kill with an army at your side, but I sure would hate to cross paths with one alone.â€

 

Nabar smiled and looked at the dead Cyclops over to his right. The snow was turning red all around him, where blood trickled from its wounds. His smiled faded and his thoughts whizzed through his mind.

 

“You know, this Cyclops is abnormally large… in fact, it looks as though they have doubled, maybe tripled in size… this is very odd.â€

 

“Training maybe,†muttered Zalza.

 

“I’m not so sure…†said Nabar, and he started to gather the troops back into their lines so that they may continue to White Stone.

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Chapter 4

 

He opened the door and stepped out of the tavern. Bosla was quite surprised that the blizzard had stopped the snowfall, and he swept around to the back, wary of a suspicious goblin huddling around the left side of the building. Bosla took the right side, and wedged himself through a hole in the wall behind the tavern and into the narrow alleys beyond.

 

It was as if he had entered a maze, the center of which was a base for the White Stone Army, protected by the buildings around it. Bosla didn’t know the way, so he decided a little view from the air might aid him.

 

He crouched down low, perfected his accuracy, then leaped into the air and atop the roof of a nameless building. Just as soon as his feet touched the textured shingles, he darted behind a chimney, smoke raising towards the bright, soft sunned, winter sky. A glimpse of something large, brown, and hairy caught his gaze, moving between buildings, a creamy white horn poking into sight over the rooftops. This creature made almost no noise at all.

 

Bosla slid down the back of the cold stone of the chimney and lay on his belly atop the roof. He crawled slowly, making as little noise as possible and peered over the edge of the roof. The thing was indeed large, brown and hairy, with a third eye slowly rotating clockwise. It wore what appeared to be some sort of leather armor; steel caps embedded in the surface of the straps holding it up around his neck. It was armed with a staff, tipped with a knife that curved in the shape of a crescent. Several gems were put on his horn, and they sparkled in their own radiance as they caught the sun’s reflection. The hairy beast swung a left, halting first, then turning in a trained army fashion. It stopped again at the edge of the building where Bosla lay at its rooftop, almost certain that it would turn and walk his way, catch the sight of him, then dice him up to little pieces and continue on his way.

 

Sure enough it did turn his way, and Bosla’s ears sunk low. He crawled around to the other side of the building, waiting for the beast to pass. He tried to make a break for it, but as he tried to stand a piece of his fur cloak caught beneath a shingle. He pulled it free, leapt up, then raced towards the edge of the building. He drew in a deep breath, leaped high into the air, then let it out. He sailed over the ledge and towards the building to the north.

 

His foot found the roofing, and he steadied himself before he fell into the alley below. He strained his eyes to see how far he had to go. Another creamy horn caught his eye, and then another far up ahead. And then another… all in straight alignment as they crossed paths between the buildings. Suddenly the thought dawned on Bosla the elf. His ears perked up. They were all in synchronized formation.

 

 

 

The commander and Zalza led their armies through tree town, the branches of the town’s giant elders looming with pride, and covered in snow. Tree town had served as a home for many elves, and from the looks of it, the tavern was full as they passed it. Soldiers, elves and human, craved for even the smallest sip of mead. They stared as they passed, and continued on down the windy road through the tall, wide trees, and on their way to White Stone City.

 

As they neared a sign that signaled a fork in the road, Zalza looked at Nabar.

 

“Which way do we take?â€

 

“The Northern, and we continue straight on from there,†he said, pointing. They made a quick halt, and every soldier took a quick rest before they made the rest of the way. Their legs ached from pushing against the waist high snow, and their toes were numb. But all supplies were present, so they continued on.

 

Almost as soon as they turned north, Nabar signaled again for a halt. Up ahead, a goblin was sighted jumping from a large boulder and into the snow, crawling back onto it and leaping once again.

 

“Do you think you can take him out, soundlessly, Querbert,†Zalza asked to the man behind her, a bow already in his hands, and fumbling with an arrow.

 

He nodded, raised the bow, looking down the tip of the arrow and aligning it with the goblin, then released. It sailed swiftly, and shot straight into the green monster’s heart. It silently slumped down off the rock it was about to spring from, and fell face first into the cold, white snow.

 

“Right,†Nabar muttered, and signaled for them to continue on their way towards the city gates.

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Chapter 5

 

 

Bosla leapt from the edge of the building, narrowly missing the edge of the one in front of him. He wavered there for what seemed like ten minutes catching his balance before looking down. One of the three eyed, hairy, horned beasts turned into the alley just below him. He stopped dead in the center, the others in precise alignment. He tapped his foot three times before marching off again. Now was his chance, and he took a running leap into the air and fell, noisily, onto the shingles of the next building. The hard, plaster shingle shook for a second, and Bosla waited there, his mind racing, as it fell to the cobblestone road below.

 

The beasts aligned in the center of the alleys once more as the plaster shingle broke with a clatter. The hairy monster in the alley behind him eyed his surroundings suspiciously. It looked up and saw Bosla, who merely grinned, leapt into the air and landed a spinning kick into the creature’s third eye before jumping onto the rooftop facing him. He leapt two more buildings before the other creatures caught sight of what was happening.

 

The beasts nearest to him ran and crashed through the walls of the building Bosla was atop. Luckily, he sprung onto the brute at his right, clutching to his horn, before the building collapsed. The monster failed to knock off the elf by waving his hands around his head, and in doing so; he only succeeded in whacking himself.

 

Bosla, shaken thoroughly by the rampaging beast, jumped from the horn and onto the hard alley cobblestone below. He took off running north, in the direction of the White Stone City army base. As he swung a left around a clump of houses huddled together, several of the horned brutes came rushing in beside him. One tried to skew him with his staff, but Bosla hurdled over the blade and jumped between the creature’s legs. The monster roared, calling to the others. There were beasts running everywhere and every way in whatever direction. Bosla crouched and leapt once more, soaring onto the rooftop of a house beside him.

 

 

 

Nabar led Zalza and the soldiers through the White Stone City gates, stopping first for any signs of a Cyclops, goblin, or any other foul creature that walked the lands. The last thing they needed now was a battle. He could hear loud roaring, and the sounds of buildings falling somewhere north in the city.

 

“It looks like the battle’s already started here,†Zalza noted, nodding to Nabar who clutched his sword and walked onward. Zalza and the army followed suit, their weapons raised and their spirits ready.

 

Somewhere near the back in the two lines of men and elves, the three priests were chanting, sending spells of good fortune their way to aid them in battle.

 

 

 

Bosla scrambled to the ledge of the roof and jumped to the next as the beasts charged, knocking building after building down behind him. The beasts were gaining on him, and the building just behind him was demolished by one of the foul brutes.

 

Bosla leapt again, his foot not catching the ledge and he tripped gaining balance, falling into the street behind him. Large, stone bricks flew all about him as the creature smashed the house down. Small debris rocks mostly, clashed and slashed against his forehead. His hood had fallen off, his ears popping out to full length.

 

He got to his feet, charging ahead, seeing a patch of grass around the house that lay before him. The base grounds for the White Stone Army. He was almost there.

 

 

 

Nabar took a shortcut to the Army Base by traveling behind the General Store and into the market area beyond. Empty stalls lay awry, tipped over, their contents flooding the streets with vegetables, fruit, flowers, and anything else you could think of. They took the right path down a dark ominous alleyway.

 

The walls were damp, and mist flowed abundantly through the area. They came to a fork in the alley, and they took the left path. The mist was gone now, and ahead of them was the base, soldiers of all races running about on the far stretch of green grass, spears in hand, talking amongst themselves. Bosla was just about to step onto the grass of the campground when he was lifted off the ground, and thrown backward into the wall behind him. Zalza smiled at him, turned, and reached for her staff.

 

It grew to full size, and she thrust it outward at the base beyond. The staff struck hard against some sort of barrier, a wave rippling around what appeared to be a bubble surrounding the army camp.

 

The priests made their way toward the barrier, and the Elder grabbed for his own staff. He raised it into the air; the gem perched on its tip radiated a golden light.

 

“This is exactly the same sort of bubble I used to protect us getting here. Let’s see if I can lower it briefly,†he said, smiling brightly. He thrust his spear at the barrier, where the glow turned from golden to blue. The barrier became visible, as though it was a giant dome of pure white light. A door opened up to which they could enter through, and they did, priests first, Nabar and Zalza following, and the soldiers behind.

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Chapter 6

 

Bosla stepped towards the patch of grass where the army base was, but was thrown backward. The creature was on its way, knocking down buildings as it came. It howled deeply, sending shivers down the elf’s spine. His ears lowered, his hair flowing about his face.

 

He looked back toward the base, wondering what happened. Suddenly, the entire base seemed to gather light inside what looked like a giant dome. The light failed after a few minutes, and Bosla recognized the new people to the base as his Commander, the elven soldiers, the High Priests, and human soldiers. He looked a little closer, very wary of the creature behind him growing nearer and nearer. A woman came into view, talking with the elder priest. The Priest nodded to her, then looked about the base, and then to the spot where Bosla lay.

 

 

 

The elder Priest was overcome with recognition of the elf lying in the ruins of the buildings. He knew him to be Bosla, second in command under Nabar. But what’s that thing behind him, the priest pondered. Bosla looked behind him, jumped up, and began signaling for the priest to let him in.

 

The priest thrust his staff into the air, and the barrier turned white once more, a door opening to let Bosla in. The light failed once more, and the door closed, just as the great horned beast neared and was flung backward. It got up, scratched its head, and reached out toward the barrier. It was flung backward again, back into the rubble of the buildings it had destroyed. The horn atop its head snapped in half, and the beast began it what could only be convulsions. After a few minutes of writhing, it ceased to move anymore.

 

Bosla ran toward Nabar, and the Priest, who was in deep conversation with the human woman.

 

“Commander Nabar! It appears we are too late… already under attack… almost… got pummeled,†heaved Nabar, out of breath.

 

“Yes, I’ve already seen… it must have been that … thing… chasing after you we heard when we entered the city gates.â€

 

“Most likely, they were putting up quite a fuss.â€

 

Nabar smiled and walked over to the human woman and the priest.

 

“Let me introduce to you Zalza Olane, village leader of her people, and has command over the human regiment.â€

 

Bosla smiled, and bowed slightly, Zalza bowing slightly as well.

 

“Have you already talked to the Commander of the White Stone army,†questioned Bosla, blowing stray hair out of his face. Bits of rock clung in it, and he had several bleeding cuts along his forehead.

 

“Not yet, I’m about to go look for him… you’d better look for the infirmary. Those cuts need to be tended to.â€

 

“Right,†muttered Bosla, scurrying off talking to a White Stone soldier carrying a mug of ale, who pointed in the direction of a small building, made of gray brick and stone. Zalza watched as he made his way across the field of grass, limping slightly as he went.

 

She decided that maybe they should seek out the White Stone army commander now, so she walked back over to Nabar. He nodded, and walked over to a solider that lay sprawled out on the face of a large rock.

 

“Excuse me, soldier, but where is your commander?â€

 

“In the barracks, forming battle plans and formations with his most trusted advisors. You know, technical stuff… wait a second!†The soldier stood now, and pointed at Nabar’s cap, and Nabar in return took it off, his ears raising.

 

The soldier studied Nabar for a minute or two.

 

“Are you the commander of your troops?â€

 

“Yes. My name is Nabar.â€

 

“And my name, Commander Nabar, is Keesiel.â€

 

The elf nodded and walked away to talk to Zalza, leaving the dumbfounded soldier behind. She was busy talking to the High Priest about magical aid, and the creatures that lay ahead.

 

“Well, my dear, the Cyclops can easily be fended off if you poke out its eye,†the old elf was saying, but stepped aside as Nabar came near.

 

“I think it may be important to talk to the commander right away, he’s located at the barracks as we speak.â€

 

She nodded, and they walked off toward a large tent, white of course, and a flag jetting out with two swords crossed pictured on it. When they walked through the open tent flap, men were seated on boxes placed in a circle. They stopped their conversation and looked at the elf and woman.

 

There were plans lay out on a crate in the center of the circle, Nabar noticed, and ales placed in all their hands.

 

“We’ve come to grant you aid in battle, as you will aid us. These raids have been going on where we come from, as well as other villages and neighboring cities.â€

 

The men just looked at them intently, then a brown faced man with a large scar running from his forehead to his chin stood up, bowing slightly.

 

“We’ll aid you, but you must fight here first. We’ve already tried attacking them head on, but there are too many of them, and my men couldn’t hold out.â€

 

“We’ll help,†Nabar and Zalza said in unison.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Well, these are the chapters I've had time to write... I'll try and continue to post the next chapters as soon as I can!

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Here's another chapter. Sorry for the lack of enthusiasm in it. I'm going through a writer's block, as well as an artist's block. I'll update this chapter later, but I need to start on the other chapters too. I have too many projects I'm taking on at once, and I need this one out of the way. But I'm not going to make the story sloppy; I can promise you that. I've been taking some time off of this story though, role playing with the ole' gang in 'Together Again' (loacted in the Role Play section), and I feel I need to get back to work here.

 

Well, here's a brief summary of the chapter.

 

Chapter 7 is mainly about some sort of... 'thing'... developing between Zalza and Nabar. (I don't know where that came from... it just sort of seemed like it the way they act toward each other). The High Priest also discovers that something else lurks in the city, some powerful presence that haunts them all.

 

Well, here's Chapter 7:

 

They walked out of the tent just in time for the earthquakes. Outside the Priest’s bubble of protection, old houses and buildings came crashing down, dust and fire rising into afternoon sky. It was near sunset now, but they could hardly tell. The dust was like a veil of mist mixing with the newly falling snow that coated everything outside the bubble with several layers of grunge. Soldiers, man and elf, ran about, gathering their weapons and armor. Zalza’s men had already formed a ring about her, waiting for further instructions. General Nabar’s men were forming ranks, awaiting orders. Bosla had fallen to the ground, peering up at the sky. But the sky couldn’t be seen the dust was so thick. It seemed to slowly clear away.

 

Nabar, Zalza noticed, was already leading his men towards an opening in the bubble to their right, so she ran and quickly barked orders to her own men. Soon enough, they were marching out of the confines of the bubble, to a city that lay in ruin. The Priest banished the bubble with a flick of his staff, and ran to catch up with Nabar.

 

“I can … feel… a presence here,†the Priest said, trying to catch his breath.

 

Nabar pointed directly ahead of him, where several of the great horned creatures were trying to tear down the remaining buildings. But the Priest shook his head, and urgently continued.

 

“No… no. I mean, a powerful force, coming somewhere to the East Side of White Stone. It’s different force than the creatures… it’s almost like… a force that is controlling the creatures.â€

 

Nabar turned to look at him, frowning. “What are you saying, High Priest?â€

 

“I’m saying, that we must find this force, and defeat it,†said the Priest.

 

Nabar nodded, and turned to Bosla, who was marching to his other side, wearing new armor. He whispered something, and Bosla sped off ahead.

 

“I’ve sent Bosla to observe the East Side of the city and report back. I also told him to be on his very best guard, Gods help him.â€

 

He bowed his head, and looked back up to the Priest, who surprisingly smiled. “The Gods are already doing much for us.†He pointed up to the sky, where the snow ceased to fall. The wind had grown still, the sky clear of cloud. Nabar tried to smile, but it failed. He wound up making a forced, tense lip curl that made him look as if he was about to retch. Which is what he felt like doing. But he forced the feeling away, and looked back to the front.

 

Zalza was issuing commands to her soldiers to pick up speed. They went from a slow march to a jog. She gave orders to Fole, and made him repeat them back to her. He was to keep the soldiers jogging behind Nabar’s, till she returned, with further instructions. With a nod to Fole, who was nervous about taking control, she ran on to catch up with Nabar.

 

“I’m going to need you to keep your men heading North. The White Stone army is heading to the West, and I’ll be heading east. He looked back up to her, concern in his eyes. She nodded, understanding, and smiled at him. His ears lowered in his cap, and were red from the cold.

 

“Set up camp where you think is suitable. I have no idea where any good spot would be now, since there’s rubble everywhere, so you’ll have to use your judgement. Slay any beast that gets in your way. I’ll send Bosla with word of any next steps, as soon as he returns to me. There’s something up in the East Side of White Stone and I’ve sent him to observe and report back…†he trailed off as she put an arm on his shoulder as the marched, and told him she would set up camp and wait. She turned to head back, but Nabar stopped her, grasping her hand. “And Zalza…â€

 

“Yes, Nabar?â€

 

“Be careful.â€

 

She nodded and went away, flushing, with a quick glance back at Nabar, who was turning his army to another path. She gave a nod, to herself for reassurance, and took up her spot at the front of her men.

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Well, this is what I have of Chapter 8 so far... sorry about the late posting, but I'm dealing with...things....in my life right now, and I'm a little preoccupied. I'll be working on this story for the reest of the day though, and as soon as I'm done with the rest I'll post it.

 

[with Nabar and Zalza... I'm trying to do something that will .. well, I'm not going to spoil it. But if it works out, It'll effect the social areas of the people of Eternal-Lands.]

 

Chapter 8

 

As Nabar rounded the corner, his eyes darted to Zalza. She had regained her position at the front of her troops, and was readily marching onward. Her face was stern, but her cheeks were flushed, red as a rose. To the others, she looked like a captain, her stature strong and tall. But to him, she was the most precious, beautiful thing he had ever seen. The Priest, unaproving of the look in Nabar’s eyes, tapped him on the shoulder. Nabar, reluctantly, shifted his eyes to the front, where they were met by a dead end. Or what he thought was a dead end. He signaled a halt, and walked towards the mass of debris in the path. Chunks of rock and marble lay littered in the snow, and it seemed comical to Nabar that a pidgeon sat perched atop a broken figurehead that had remained standing upright beside a bent lamppost. He sniffed around until he found that there was, indeed, a way past the cluttered rubble. Smiling to hide his fears of the evils ahead, he signaled for them to continue.

 

The snow was deep and packed here, seeming to grab at their legs and pull them back. But they were determined, and knew that they couldn’t turn back now. Nabar, ears red and twitching, could hear an occasional wheeze escape Priest’s blue tinted lips against the howl of the wind, as he could hear the grunts from his men behind. More debris was cluttered about, a local tavern they could see, but the area to the left was as an open field. He signaled for them to turn. When they had pushed past the fallen pub, he called another halt. They had reached their destination, weary and tired none-the-less, but they had made it.

 

They all jumped as they heard a sinister cackle sound from one of the rooftops. They had entered one of the cities market areas, strangely untouched by the hand of destruction. Nabar looked about, unsure of where it came from. There were buildings clustered about in a circle around them, each building connected.

 

The laughter came again, followed by a low, steady voice that sent shivers down the soldiers’ backs. Except, there was something…wrong…about the voice, something not quite right. As if it strained to be human. Nabar looked to the Priest, whose gaze was fixed on the General Store. A realization hit Nabar off-guard, striking him like an unexpected punch. There was no snow, and the cobblestones beneath their feet could be seen clearly. There wasn’t even the slightest hint of moisture, despite the misty breeze. Odd, he thought, what sort of spell or charm could do all of this? Frowning, he looked up towards the store’s red tiled roof. His senses were firing off, and he could smell the magic and the presence of whoever was hiding there. It was metallic against his tongue; similar to a sensation only produced by chewing on a strip of aluminum foil, or a metal fork. He spat and looked back up, grimacing, and drew his sword from its sheathe.

 

 

 

 

They had stumbled upon a horde of trolls, or to put it more accurately, the trolls had stumbled upon them. Zalza’s army halted as the howls of surprise pierced the air. The men in the back only had time to turn around, when a club had already smacked across the side of their head. The crack of their skulls seemed louder than the howls coming from the monsters, and more soldiers turned around, swords drawn, glittering in the presence of the sun.

 

The trolls, apparently amused, looked at each other with beady eyes, then turned back to look at the swords. They raised their clubs again when they heard a startled shout sound from somewhere in the middle of the cluttered army. And then, the head of Zalza Olane poked out of the mass. She continued to push her way through until she found herself looking at six, enormous and drooling beasts. She ducked just in time for a club to some searing down where her head should be. With a surprised and somewhat muted battle cry, she lunged forward into the hairy beast, her sword piercing through its flesh, slowly sliding through until it reached the other side. They both fell, and she pulled her blade out with little effort, and raised it high into the air. Blood dripped from the blade down the handle and down her hand, and she waved it around with a more confident whoop of war.

 

The first three rows of her army attacked head on, about twelve men, and seemed to overcome the trolls, but were thrown back off their feet. Clubs were swinging, clashing down on the fallen soldiers. Zalza, again surprised, called to her men again, and ran ahead of them into battle with her sword still held high.

 

 

 

 

At first, Nabar thought lost sense of where he was or what he was doing, and merely stood there dumbfounded, looking at the rooftops. He could smell; taste its presence, but where was it? He slowly crouched down, his ears twitching, listening for any sounds to give away its whereabouts. He slowly walked, crouching and sword firmly in his hands, forward, where he thought it was. He heard the squeak of a rat from one of the alleys, the flapping wings of a lone bird overhead, and to his tingling ears, he swore he heard breathing coming to his right. When he turned around, he jumped. It was only the priest, pointing to the roof of the tavern. Indeed, he thought, I can sense him.

 

He ran and crouched to jump, to leap atop the building, but stopped. Whatever it was, it seemed to materialize right in front of him. It stood maybe ten feet tall, looking down at the crouching elf. In one fluid motion, it seized Nabar’s hair, and raised him eye level with his. If you could call what he had eyes. His face had no exact shape, seeming to roll around as if it strained to stay on his shoulders. It was darkness, almost like a void, from its hair to its toes. It didn’t seem capable of holding its shape, but managed to hold Nabar up never the less. Those eyes, like white balls, rolled around in this void, pupils fixed on Nabar’s. And in reaction to his terror, he brought his sword streaming through the sides of this…thing. But whatever it was had disappeared, and the commander dropped to the ground. Still on his feet, he looked around…nothing. No blackness, metallic tastes of magic, or anything. He turned in circles, trying to catch a scent of this, creature, but it was gone. He walked, still observing the marketplace closely, back to the priest and his soldiers.

 

“Something’s not --,†he was saying, but cut off as he reached his men. The priest, his soldiers…his friends, were laying on the ground. Dead.

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Aira, this is a heck of a tale. Will you be finishing it for us? Please let me know as I'm compiling a list of in progress and abandoned projects. The main focus right now is simply creating the history for EL but this is just too good to let go....

 

Hope to hear from you as soon...

 

Thnx

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