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Chapter Four - An Ancient Oath...
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Idea master

Joined: 10 May 2004
Posts: 1787
Location: Sneaking Idearium into your beverages.

Posted: Tue May 29, 2007 10:25 pm    Post subject:  

Definition of work: Hell you get paid for.
Definition of awkward: Having the same Puss in Boots doll make passes at you twenty times a day.
Definition of genius: A story written by IM.

Chapter Four: An ancient oath...

"Well, why not take those machines over there?"

Harold looked more closely at where Lucy was pointing. It was near the fetid swamp, and unless his eyes were deceiving him, those were just branches stuck out at odd angles. "I don't see any machines, Lucy."

"Oh, sure, they're a little Leonardo Da Vinci, but I'm sure they'll work. All we have to do is clean them up a little bit."

Now that he looked closer, that did look like a gear there, and perhaps that was part of a propeller. "Well, all right, but if it doesn't work, we'll have to walk through the swamp."

"Over it, you mean. I'm rather certain you don't want to go through everything that lies beneath the water's surface."

"Point." Harold shuddered at the thought. "Well, this is your idea, you go through first."

Lucy stuck her tongue out at him and walked through the doorway. No ripple, no flash of light as she instantly disintegrated, she simply walked through the door and stood on the other side. "Well, come on, slowpoke! We'll be at it all day at this rate!"

"What did I get myself in to?" Harold muttered, bit his lip, and walked through the door as well. It was painless, and the ice-cold jell-o feel of it had vanished since the first door.

Quickly Harold turned around to ensure that the door back was still there. He was reassured by the soft glow of his room that laid in another world. He carefully reached out and closed the door behind himself, just to be on the safe side in case something found the door and went through it. The door stayed put, which made for an odd sight, a door in the middle of a bleak landscape such as this. The clouds seemed to be made of poison, and the air tasted of tar and sulfur. If this wasn't Hell, it was next door to it. The blue rune on the door's surface reassured him, though, and Harold turned to Lucy. "Let's get this machine re-assembled then," he muttered, and with that, pulled out his math book. "Now let's pull up the schematics for that thing and make it work like Da Vinci's worst nightmare."


"Are you sure it'll hold together?" Lucy asked a few hours later.

The thing stood on the hard surface between forest and marsh. It looked like it had been described: Da Vinci's worst nightmare. It looked like some sort of bizzare redheaded twice removed (and three times disowned) cousin to the helicopter. Sticks stuck out at odd angles compared to the rest of the machine, while some sort of propeller stuck out from on top with swamp-weed stretched between to act as fabric. It looked ungainly (and completely ugly to boot) but if the book had not led them astray, then it would hold.

"It ought to work, but there's only one way to find out."

Lucy walked up and sat in the passenger's seat behind the pilot's seat. Harold groaned. "I meant ask the book."

Harold pulled out the math book. "Estimate the distance to the tower from the helicopter's resting place."

The ink flowed out of the paper to make figures and letters. 2000 feet.

"And this craft will hold together for how long?"

Twenty minutes.

"Hold that figure. How much distance will it cover per minute on average?"

100 feet.

Harold knew his multiplication figures well enough to know that he'd be fine. "We're off," he said, and sat down in the pilot's seat. A few seconds later, he began pedaling the Argo off to the tower.


"We're nearing the tower!" Lucy shouted.

"Yes, I see that," Harold replied.

"How will we get in?" Lucy screamed.

"A lot easier if you stop screaming in my ears! The wind is not whipping past us and stealing your words away, so just bloody SHUT UP FOR A MINUTE AND LET ME THINK!"

Lucy fell silent, realizing her folly shortly after Harold's outburst. A few seconds later, Harold said, "I'm sorry, but you have to realize that I'm trying to do something, and the screaming is not helping."

A few seconds later, Lucy replied with a soft, "Sorry. So how will we be getting in?"

"I was aiming for that window," Harold replied.

Lucy looked, and saw that there was indeed a pane of semi-transparent black glass up ahead. "Oh-" she managed to say before they hit.

The sound was that of a thousand tiny bells all tingling at once. It was wonderful for the moment that it happened, and then there was the discord of the glass hitting the cold stone interior, and that's when the bells went sour.

The Argo disintegrated the moment it hit, depositing it's cargo of two human passengers tumbling onto the black stone within. After a moment's hesitation to get his head in the right order, Harold picked himself up, brushed off his clothes so that no glass was stuck in them, and surveyed the room. Black candles were lit in a circle, and an intricate pattern was engraved into the stone. The engraving itself was a stark contrast to the black stone it was set in. It seemed to be simplistic in nature. Seven circles, one rectangle, two ovals, all set in a simple diagram that somehow took up the entire floor.

Harold was then hit square in the chest by an energy blast. When he looked over the room again, he noticed a man in a black set of robes. The man in question was holding his left arm outstretched, and the bolt of black energy was coming from him. "Impossible!" the man cried out. "You should be dead!"

Harold was by now throughly ticked off, especially when he noticed that there was a key in the man's right hand, and that he was standing over the central part of the diagram, though not quite. He was near the rectangle and two ovals that were positioned around the center. The seven circles that Harold noticed earlier were positioned equal distance from the center and each other, making for a simple, yet somehow intricate, diagram. Harold returned his mind to the task at hand, though. "Give me that key," he demanded of the sorcerer.

"And why should I?" The man spat back at him. "With this key, I will unlock the world between the worlds, and set free the dark lords that were imprisoned so long ago, the ones that were betrayed by the ancient pacts your kind swore long ago. And then they will give me immortality. And all will learn to fear the name of-"

He never got to say his name, for Lucy had snuck up behind him and throughly clobbered him with her history book. The man slumped to the floor without another word. Harold looked at Lucy in shock, and she merely shrugged. "I can't stand people who monologue," she stated. "It makes them forget the rest of the world, and so I figured I'd remind him."

Harold picked up the key from where it had fallen, and got a closer look at the engravings to boot. Whoa..." he said.

"What is it?" Lucy asked.

"These look like tiny words...yeah! Yeah they are! Look at this! You shall not leave..."

"And over here! My name! Lucy, mistress of-" Lucy cut off abruptly, as red quickly rose to her cheeks. Harold, however, moved to the edge of the circle itself and began reading.

"This is interesting, it's like a miniature history book. And so it came to pass that the Founder sealed away the Divine Spheres, and did give charge of keeping the Worlds safe from each other and from that which had been sealed to his friends the Dragon and the Unicorn. When their time came near for them to pass into Death's Kingdom, they swore that there would be another to carry on their duty while they waited ten thousand years to be reborn into the world again. And so they found their first Key-Bearer and bound him to the service of keeping the Worlds safe."

Harold moved to a closer, inner ring, while Lucy listened carefully to what he had to say. "The first Key-Bearer swore his oaths to the Dragon and Unicorn, to pledge himself to their teachings. He did not, however, see any reason as to why the Worlds had to be separated, nor why the Spheres sealed. So, without the Dragon or Unicorn's knowledge, he let loose one creature from the Light Sphere onto an island. Unknowingly, he also let loose a creature from the Dark Sphere, as the Multiverse likes to keep itself in balance. When the two fought, they brought the island to the seafloor. It would later be known as...Atlantis. For his crimes, the Dragon and Unicorn punished him, then sought another to be the Key-Bearer. However, since their time was short, they could only find one who was willing to be the guardian of the worlds and could not teach him in the way they had taught the first. He had barely uttered his oaths before the Dragon and Unicorn burst into flames, their lifespans exceeded, their ancient knowledge passing with them into the ether between Life and Death."

Lucy pondered. "But that means that the elf lady was lying! The Key-Bearer job isn't as old as the worlds themselves. In fact, it sounds like only a few thousand years old!"

Harold paused. "You're right. But we've done what we came to do, and now we have to save her and the elves from doom by demon."

Lucy bit her lip. "I'm not so sure. After all, they lied to you. Shouldn't we at least question them a little before agreeing to help them?"

Harold was filled with indecision again...

Well, I had much trouble getting this one out into the open. But it is here, and I hope you all enjoyed it.
So. Betrayal from one side, and an ever-growing demon threat from another! But which shall we face first? Or do we even do that? Should we go to this 'world between the worlds' that our mysterious mis-garbed man muttered about? I leave the floor to all of you...
*Ducks behind a large concrete wall.*
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Joined: 07 Apr 2007
Posts: 479
Location: Somewhere between here and not-here, now and not-now... in the half-light, the borderlands, between.

Posted: Tue May 29, 2007 10:41 pm    Post subject:  

Idea Master wrote: Harold pulled out the math book. "Estimate the distance to the tower from the helicopter's resting place."

The ink flowed out of the paper to make figures and letters. 2000 feet.

"And this craft will hold together for how long?"

Twenty minutes.

"Hold that figure. How much distance will it cover per minute on average?"

100 feet.

Harold knew his multiplication figures well enough to know that he'd be fine.

Now, if my multiplication figures are correct, that would be precisely 2,000 feet, on average. I could be completely wrong, but if it is exactly 2,000 feet to the window and the helicopter only goes 2,000 feet on average, wouldn't there be some doubt as to whether it would actually reach the window? Shouldn't there be a couple of paragraphs involving them nearly dying, one clinging to the other's shoelace or something?

Plus, once (if) it reached the window, surely that means it would barely be moving, since it had lost all of its momentum and was breaking up... It would be moving very slowly, not really fast enough to smash through a window with its propellers since the window has to be set into the stone, as opposed to jutting out. which would dictate one of them leaping, dragging the other one behind them, so as to smash the heavy, solid glass... Not only that, but *mrf mrf mrf aaargh*.

Uhm, yes. Excellent story, I have absolutely nothing to say, well written. I liked your sentences devoted entirely to description, they furthered the story nicely.
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Joined: 05 Sep 2005
Posts: 8797

Posted: Wed May 30, 2007 2:29 am    Post subject:  

Well, according to my math, they can safely journey to the moon and back. But then arithmetic has never been my strong point. ;)

Anyhoo, I say suspicion is the order of the day! Go back and try to find out stuff all subtle like. I mean, they must be keeping something behind that door with all the bolts and bars on.

Oh, liked the name of the 'copter too! :lol:
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Joined: 11 Jan 2007
Posts: 198
Location: Right here.

Posted: Wed May 30, 2007 9:55 am    Post subject:  

It's not certain that the elves were lying on purpose, for all we know, they might not have been there when the first keybearer was chosen, and due to the inaccuracy of history several millenias old, such a misunderstanding might have happened even if they were.
Don't trust them too much though.

So we've got stupid elves on one side, and impending doom by demon hands on the other. I say take care of the demon first.
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tramp in a storm

Joined: 11 Apr 2005
Posts: 1585
Location: You never know...I could be in YOUR dust bin.

Posted: Thu May 31, 2007 11:46 am    Post subject:  

Now that my printer hates me, I've caught up again. :D

If you wanted to be really nasty, he could somehow set the demon on the elves (and watch from a distance) :lol: .
But I think he'd better find out if they were lying on purpose, and why, before making any big decisions.
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Idea master

Joined: 10 May 2004
Posts: 1787
Location: Sneaking Idearium into your beverages.

Posted: Wed Jun 06, 2007 8:44 pm    Post subject:  

The dandelions of voting have sprung up all over King Key's palace grounds. In one week's time I'll come in with the weedkiller, so pluck the flower with your choice if you please.
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tramp in a storm

Joined: 11 Apr 2005
Posts: 1585
Location: You never know...I could be in YOUR dust bin.

Posted: Thu Jun 07, 2007 10:40 am    Post subject:  

*plucks a dandilion, is gratefull that this somehow reminded me that I'm burning my curry and waits for the next chapter*
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Joined: 10 Feb 2007
Posts: 1597
Location: Happily curled up in a Daemon's lap

Posted: Thu Jun 07, 2007 2:17 pm    Post subject:  

Meh, let the demon have them.
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