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Apocolypto (WT)
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Chinaren
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2019 7:21 am    Post subject: Re: What's it stand for? Reply with quote

Thanks for all the comments IFians. All good stuff.

Lebrenth wrote:
Say, what does the WT in Apocolypto (WT) stand for? Or are we supposed to figure that out later?


Nothing so exciting Lebs, it just stands for 'Working Title'. I'm not really happy with 'Apocolypto' - In fact it was 'The Fifth Piece' for a while, but then I changed one of my ideas for the story, so that didn't work anymore. Never mind, something will come to me eventually.

That said, some sort of title-story link is an interesting idea.

Right, an aside note:

I'm going through stress trying to get somewhere to live atm, so my writing ability is a bit impaired at the moment. That and the 5h1t internet access I currently have. So if I'm not around quite as much as I'd like to be then don't worry* I'm probably just having fits of anxiety and anger and such-like.

That said, you never know when the writing urge will grab me.


*Well, you can worry a bit if you like, 'cos you never know. My life isn't 100% stable atm.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2019 8:33 am    Post subject: Understood Reply with quote

Thanks for letting us know! Sounds really rough, Chinaren. I hope you pull through soon.

Now I want to figure out a way to incorporate the WT! Maybe it's the initials of someone who starts leaving clues for Salzar, leaving us wondering who is out there already that knows what's going on and can we trust them?
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2019 12:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks guys. A bit busy during this period, but I'll be writing more as soon as I can. Sorry for the break, but RL intrudes. Sigh.
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 6:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chinaren wrote:
Thanks guys. A bit busy during this period, but I'll be writing more as soon as I can. Sorry for the break, but RL intrudes. Sigh.


I fully sympathize and empathize. RL is really hitting me too! Hope things chill out soon.
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2019 7:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Poll is finally up peeps! Vote away!

Mmm, deja vu.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2019 3:27 pm    Post subject: Booze first, words maybe later Reply with quote

Decided we don't have to speak the same language to be friends, especially with booze handy. Voted to share.
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 10:12 am    Post subject: Apololypto - Chapter I Part III – Dave Reply with quote

The karate master gestured once more, pointing at the bottle, and then looking around, possibly for someone else to jabber at.

“You thirsty old timer?” Dave asked. He looked at the bottle in his hand, and shrugged. “Why not? No harm in befriending the locals.” So saying, he twisted the top off and offered the vodka to the his new friend.

The result wasn't what he'd expected.

With an angry shout, the man pulled out the dagger from his belt and took a swing at Dave with it. “???? you ?????,” he said.

Bouncing back, Dave cried out. “Hey! Did you... oh no!” This last because the man stalked forward another few steps with his knife held in a dangerous fashion ahead of him.

“Fuck this.” Abondoning all hopes of a stiff drink, Dave threw the bottle at the man, who leaped to one side nimbly enough to dodge the errant container. This did give Dave the chance to pull out his newly claimed hatchet though. He wasn't going to risk bending down to recover the gun with Knifey McKnife face ahead of him.

His opponent slowed his advance as he saw Dave wielding the small axe.

“????? dare you ??????? me ?? forbidden ?????” he snarled.

“What? What did you say?” Dave leaped back as the man thrust suddenly, nearly eviserating him. He swung his hatchet wildly in turn, not skillfully, but well enough to force the man back a pace.

“Listen!” he said, as they scowled at each other. “I think we may have got off to a bad start, my name...”

“I care not what your name is filthy beverage carrier! Nobody insults Marvak and lives to tell of it.” Marvak, if that was his name, then bounced forward once more, and with a skilfull attack, scored a thin cut on his arm.

“Ow! You fucker!” Dave saw red, and countered with a swing of his own, which missed, and a kick to the nuts, which didn't.

Marvak staggered, impressively keeping upright and at least half focused on Dave, as the barkeep made another wild swing, accidentally kicking the shotgun that he'd forgotten about at the same time.

There was a loud retort, as the firearm went off, blowing a large hole through the unfortunate Marvak, who managed to gape at him for several seconds before collapsing in a pile of blood and guts on the path.

“Jebus!” said Dave, gasping for breath. He picked the gun up and looked around wildly. The altercation had to have attracted attention, but the few people in the fields nearby only glanced over quickly, facing away when they saw Dave looking at them.

“Weird and disconcerting.” Dave put the hatchet back into his belt. Then he walked over to his poor bottle of vodka, which lay leaking it's fluid out on the path, and picked that up. There was about half of it left. He took a swig before retreiving the cap and screwing it back on.

His items recovered, he stepped over to look at poor old Marvak, who was still dead, spread out in the centre of a dark pool of blood, but at least he wasn't melting.

“Right then, not such a good start.” He reached into his pocket and pulled out his little robot. “Hey, buddy, you awake?”

The tiny robot's eyes lit up, and it swivelled its head to look at him. “Target particle detected north, within eighteen sectors,” was all it said, before powering down again.

“Er, okay,” said Dave. He looked around again, and then up. Assuming the sun followed the same rules as he was used to, and there was no guarantee that was the case, and assuming it was afternoon, again no guarantee, then north would be over by the castle. “Yeah, that would be about right,” he muttered.

>>>

Very well then, short and, maybe, sweet this time. And easy question to answer: Where next?

To the castle? Visit the nearby village? Go and beat up one of the field workers? Something else? The world is Dave's oyster, help him eat it please!

<<<

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm delighted to learn that offering the drink was a very bad idea. I think it's best if things don't always turn out for us. Also, we learned that alcohol is not a polite gift here, so there's a silver lining.

Does this guy even know what the particles are? Maybe the transfer is sinking in enough that he knows it's important. Anyway, I'm guessing the ones that have it don't really know what they have. Also, if we're not actively in a war zone, maybe we can just walk in? Offer to trade for the particle... maybe even something as valuable as a gun.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2019 7:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lebrenth wrote:
I'm delighted to learn that offering the drink was a very bad idea. I think it's best if things don't always turn out for us. Also, we learned that alcohol is not a polite gift here, so there's a silver lining.

Hehe, well, without trying to so a spoiler, that part might not be all it seemed. Wink

Lebrenth wrote:

Does this guy even know what the particles are? Maybe the transfer is sinking in enough that he knows it's important. Anyway, I'm guessing the ones that have it don't really know what they have. Also, if we're not actively in a war zone, maybe we can just walk in? Offer to trade for the particle... maybe even something as valuable as a gun.


Nice Lebs, though maybe the people he asks also don't know what the particles are. Laughing

Or maybe... heh. Something else you may not have considered... which you may find out next section.

That being said, thank you for your ideas as always! Cool
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2019 2:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I think we've got to be focused on the particle, so head for the castle. But don't go in and definitely don't mention the particle to anyone. Just get in the vicinity and scout around. Find out who's in charge. Use the robot to make sure that's where the particle is and hopefully get some idea of how precise the robot's locater is.
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 05, 2019 8:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks chaps. I shall wait a while more before polling. Been a bit busy just lately, and seem to be struggling to get back into the writing 'zone'.
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2019 9:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Right, sorry for the lack of movement for ages, RL has been jumping up and down and distracting me.

Poll is up though, here and there and there.
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 12:33 pm    Post subject: Apocolypto - Xy. Reply with quote

“Princess, they are waiting for you,” May, her old servant, said. May's eyes were on the floor, as was proper, but even so, Xy could feel the glare of impatience. The princess didn't care. She would come before her father when she was ready, and not before. It was her right!

Still, she thought, as she looked herself over once more in the mirror, even she had to admit that, finally, her attire was satisfactory. Her long, pristine white robes hung down to her knees. A green sash was wrapped around her waist, and her simple gold necklace clung to her long, thin neck. One thing was missing. Her main blade. It was waiting for her in the throne room, along with the assembled court. To be formally presented to her for her coming of age. She felt naked with only two daggers.

“Very well,” she said. “I am ready. Lead on May.”

Xy stifled a rebellious titter at the servants sniff of disapproval. Using names for servants! Xy was traditional it as true, it would have been impossible not to be given her upbringing, but she also harboured thoughts of a more progressive nature. Thoughts that, for now, she kept very well hidden. Even the next in line to the throne had to be careful when confronting the traditions that had dominated the empire for so long.

May led the way out of her chambers, and along the passage, through Xy's quarters. Out of the doors, where two of the princesses' personal guards, both female of course, were standing at attention. As she passed through they fell in behind her, walking in step, hands on their weapons, eyes darting left and right, ever vigilant.

Down the grand staircase, past more guards, house guards this time, and along the main corridor down to the throne room. Those grand doors swung open slowly as she approached. May stopped and stood to one side as they arrived, allowing her to enter.

Stepping inside the room, Xy's eyes went straight to her father, sitting on the imperial throne, dressed in all the splendour that could possibly be afforded to the Highest of the High. His eyes met her in turn, and she thought she detected the hint of approval in them. Her father had been her most staunch advocate through the years, to the point were he'd even taught in some of her weapon's classes. An almost unheard of action.

Xy glanced to her father's right, and steeled herself. Her mother was also looking at her, but this time it was a glare. For reasons Xy had never really understood, her own mother had always hated her. Xy's younger brother, on the other hand, could do no wrong.

The princess switched her eyes back to her father as she arrived at the base of the dais that his throne was placed on. She fell to a single knee in front of him, and heard the collective intake of breath from the courtiers assembled for the spectacle. Going down on one knee was usually reserved for a prince, and a warrior.

Her head held up defiantly, Xy stared at her father, daring him to say something.

The emperor merely made a very slight movement with his mouth, which she interpreted as a hint of a smile.

There was a hiss of expelled air from the Empress, but her father ignored it. Nodding, he allowed her to rise, which she did in one smooth motion.

“Xy, you are well come,” the Emperor said.

“I thank my Lord,” she replied, dipping her head. The minimum courtesy.

Her father chuckled, obviously enjoying her show of bravado. Inwardly, Xy smiled. She knew him well. He admired strength and courage nearly above all. No matter who showed it. It made him, in her eyes, the greatest man to ever sit on the throne.

“You are here because you are now a woman,” the Emperor went on, this time in a louder voice, meant to be heard. “Your childhood, that carefree time...”

Xy swallowed a grimace. Hardly carefree.

“... is over. Now you are here to proclaim your title and your ambitions.”

Nodding again, this time in acknowledgement, Xy smiled. The security this offered was invaluable to her. With this ceremony, her place as heir would be nearly unassailable.

“Before I carry on,” intoned her father, as the ritual prescribed. “Does anyone have any objections?”

Xy held her breath. It was unlikely that anyone would stand up, knowing how fond of his daughter the Emperor was, but even so...

The required time passed, and the Emperor nodded. “Very well, I now declare Zheal Xy Ghlv Cha Zibath, my heir and woman proper, child no longer.” Her father looked at her. “It is your right to demand a boon.”

“My sword,” she replied instantly. No surprise there. “And...”

“Two?” The Emperor raised an eyebrow. “Speak on then.”

Xy smiled, half mischief and half amusement.

>>>

Oh, didn't see this coming. Now it's there though, what could she also ask for? Bear in mind she's in a very formal, rigid society. Imagine old Japan, but more so.

Let's have your ideas, assuming anyone is still here...

<<<<

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe the right to be present during discussions of matters of state? Not sure how this society works. If she's her father's "heir" does that mean she gets to rule when he dies? Or does that go to her brother? In any case, learning to rule seems like it would suit her.

Another possibility - maybe an office, like Captain of the Guard? Or Captain of the Female Guards? Something to do besides being a princess, and who knows, maybe she'll get a chance to launch a coup.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 22, 2020 8:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the input your gloriousness! I shall leave this a while longer on the, apparently increasingly rare, off chance someone else has an input.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 28, 2020 10:44 am    Post subject: Apololyto - Chapter I, part IV+ : Max & Salzar Reply with quote

Max grunted and ducked as he ran along behind the remains of the wall. The curse of the sergeant was already making itself felt it seemed. Only seconds after he had he picked up the strange metallic object near the remains of the bunker, the enemy had attacked. How they had got so close without anyone detecting them he didn't know, but he would worry about that later, should he have a later.

Initially he'd been lucky. The attackers hadn't seen him, not expecting anyone to be there, and he'd managed to seclude himself within a pile of debris as the force passed by, on the way to the main attack. Max itched to get back to his own lines to warn someone, but there was no getting in front of the enemy troops now. They'd get there before he could.

So he'd lay low until there was a break and scooted off at right angles, thinking he could work his way around back to his own lines.

It wasn't to be. Enemy troops were everywhere, advancing stealthily through no man's land. It baffled Max as to how they were managing to elude all the sensors and surveillance of his own side.

Moving carefully, he'd been forced further and further off course, until he'd ended up in his current position, in one of the many, mostly destroyed, villages that littered the battlefield, long since abandoned by whomever had lived here.

He made it to the shelter he'd been heading for, a small brick construct of some kind. Maybe it had once been a coal cellar or the like. Now it was just useful cover. Panting hard, he took stock. He had his pistol, rifle and basic supplies, including a few rations, but no extra cover. If he was forced to hide out overnight he was going to need shelter, or freeze to death.

With that in mind, he eyed the row of mostly destroyed houses nearby. One of them, amazingly, was nearly intact. It even looked like it had more than one floor. It would be a good place to shelter, with a view of the approaching area. Decision made, he put his plan into action and pulled himself up and around the wall... and stopped.

There was a man there, obviously he was equally surprised at Max's appearance, as he was staring at him wide eyed. He was dressed in some kind of dark leather outfit, with long boots, a cloak and a short sword at his side, of all things. Training took over. Before he was even aware of it, Max had pulled his sidearm and fired.

The bullet slowed and stopped before it reached it's target, remaining still in the air for a moment before dropping, spent, to the floor.

The stranger looked wide-eyed at Max. Max returned the stare, and then fired again and again, until the clip was empty.

Once again, there was no effect. The bullets hung short of their target for a moment before dropping into the mud to join their brother.

“By the Universe!” Max gasped, taking a step back.

“???? ?? ??????,” said the man, holding his empty hands out in front of him, an action that made Max squeeze the trigger of his now empty pistol again.

“?? ??? ????? ?? hurt ???!” said the stranger.

“What?” Max stopped. “What did you say?” At the same time he felt something move in his pocket.

“I said ?? ??? ????? to hurt you,” repeated the man.

“Listen,” Max said, suddenly remembering where he was. “I don't know what in the Universe is going on, but we're in the middle of an attack here. If you're not with them, then you're in danger.” He wasn't sure what it was, but he suddenly had the feeling that this person wasn't his enemy.

“What ??? you ???? say?” the stranger asked.

“What?” replied Max.

“What?”

The two men stared at each other in mutual bafflement for moment, before Max pulled himself together.

“Listen,” he said, “we need to get under cover. Come with me if you want to live.” He pointed at the house he'd spotted earlier. Then, without waiting to see if he was being followed, he moved past the man and jogged towards his target. After a moment he heard the stranger curse under his breath and follow.


Chapter I Part V – Salzar.

Salzar followed the soldier through the debris that littered the remains of the destroyed village. The houses were made of dark brick; strange, ghostlike things, broken and abandoned for goodness knows how long in this sad, war torn world. Maybe the soldier would be able to give him a bit of guidance. His pointing device had suggested a piece of artefact was nearby. He'd no doubt have to dig through half a ton of mud to find it. He glanced left and right. Whatever this dimension lacked, mud was not on the list.

The warrior was heading towards a fairly intact looking house, moving with a practised gait through the uneven ground. He was clad in a rather horrible grey/green coloured uniform, which was no doubt designed to help him blend into the terrain. Slung over his back was a cleverly designed backpack, large enough to be able to carry a reasonable amount of equipment but sleek enough not to interfere too much with movement. Over one shoulder was a long device, like a pipe with a handle and trigger. This was a weapon, Salzar quickly decided, similar but larger than the one he'd fired earlier. Luckily the protective magics that had been cast on him before he left were still strong, and hadn't had any problem protecting him from the projectiles. Finally, his new friend was wearing some kind of helmet, the same colour as his uniform, that came halfway down his ears and slightly further down the back of his neck.

So intent was Salzar in studying the fellow, he nearly bumped into him when the man suddenly stopped, holding up one hand in, belated, warning.

“What...” Salzar started to ask, but was immediately shushed.

The soldier, carefully and quietly, unslung his larger weapon and did something that made a kind of a metallic clicking noise. The man looked back at Salzar and pointed ahead, at the doorway they'd been heading for.

The mage felt a slight thrill of excitement run through him. There was an enemy nearby! He'd never been in any actual fighting, though he knew several battle spells. With all his wards, this would be a perfect time to try them out, and he had the wand and the sword too, if he needed anything more.

Thus emboldened, he tapped his colleague on the shoulder, nearly making the poor man jump out of his skin.

“Let me go first,” he whispered.

“No, there are at least two, maybe...” the man started.

“It's okay, I've protective wards.” The soldier stopped speaking and looked puzzled, but then stepped, carefully, back. No doubt he thought that if this strange man wanted to get himself killed he wasn't going to stop him.

Muttering an offensive spell under his breath, Salzar crept carefully forward, sidling up towards the doorway. As he did so his heart began to beat faster. This wasn't a practice scenario at his college. These people were deadly serious. For the first time he began to appreciate the enormity of what he'd been thrust into. He shook his head. Too late to back out now.

Ducking down he, very quickly, stuck his head around the doorway, took a mental snapshot of the room, pulling it back just as fast.

Evaluating what he had seen, he decided on an aggressive approach. As much as to do something before he totally chickened out as any other reason. Moving before he could change his mind, he readied his spell and dived into the room, rolling on landing before coming up, ready to cast.

The world exploded in noise and light as several previously hidden shapes opened up with weapons not unlike his soldier friend's long stick.

Maybe these men had better sticks, or maybe theirs were just more powerful, but these projectiles knocked him back slightly. Suddenly angry, he loosed his magic.

The spell was called Blue Snapper, and it threw from six to several dozen small blue, explosive, energy bolts from his fingertips. Salzar had chosen this as his specialist offensive spell in battle classes, because it was a relatively lower power spell to cast, quick, and could take out multiple opponents. Of course, back in college he'd only used it on dummy targets.

He wasn't ready for the real thing. The three men that were firing at him simply exploded as the bolts hit home, splattering the surroundings with blood, flesh, muscle and bone.

“Fuck me!” Salzar said, shocked at the result. He stopped and stared at the gruesome mess, and thus reacted too slowly when the fourth man stepped out of cover with some kind of metal ball in his hand. He was about to throw it at Salzar, when there was a single retort from the doorway. The enemy soldier was thrown back as his friend's weapon's projectile hit him in the chest.

Get down!” shouted his new pal, as the enemy fighter fell backwards, releasing the metal ball, which rolled a short way away, coming to rest against the wall.

Salzar was too slow. There was a huge explosion, and he was thrown back violently in an orange cloud of fire, to smash against the something hard. Even with his protective wards, he felt the heat and power of the device. The impact winded him, hard, and he slid down to land in a crumpled heap on the dirty floor.


Chapter I Part VI – Max.

Ducking quickly back quickly, Max felt the earth shake as the grenade went off. Orange flames licked past him, out of the doorway, followed by a cloud of brown dust.

Coughing slightly, he waited a short time, letting the dust settle, before peering back around, fully expecting to see the stranger scattered over the floor.

Instead the man was merely lying on the ground groaning. Max shook his head in amazement. Not only had the fellow taken out three soldiers, conclusively, in the blink of an eye, but he'd survived half a dozen machine gun rounds and a grenade. He didn't know what the man had, but Max wanted some of it.

Glancing around first, it was unlikely anyone else had survived, but years of war had made him careful, he made his way over the stranger, who was slowly sitting up and dusting the dirt off his odd outfit.

“Are you alright?” Max asked him, offering him a lift up.

The other nodded and took his hand. Max pulled the fellow up, wondering at the smooth skin of his new comrade. Whomever he was, he certainly wasn't from around here. He itched to know, but first things first...

“We need to secure a spot, upstairs might be best,” be said. “Hopefully with the attack going on, all this won't be noticed.” He gestured at the gruesome scene they were standing in the middle of. “Wait, let me check for anything useful.” Leaving the other to get his bearings, Max scouted out the enemies' former hideout. One of the machine guns still looked serviceable, the others having been rendered useless by the grenade. He picked it up and slung it over his shoulder, and retrieved all the remaining ammunition he could find, plus a couple of grenades and a few other choice items.

By the time he'd finished he was rather encumbered. He would have to sort things out later.

The man was looking at something in his hand, a kind of watch perhaps, and frowning. As Max moved towards him, the man's eyes widened.

“You!” he said, startling Max and nearly making him reach for his pistol again. “It's on you!”

“What?” Max replied. “What is it?”

“Do you have a...” the man hesitated. “I don't know what it looks like,” he said, as much to himself as Max. He looked up again. “Do you have, er, something odd on you?”

Frowning, Max was about to say no, but then he remembered the small metallic thing he'd picked up at the bunker. He hadn't had any chance to inspect it before the attack, simply stuffing it in his pocket, and had been too busy since.

“Let's get secure first,” he said, in way of reply. “It will be getting dark soon. Come on, I want to see if we can find a way upstairs.”

“But...”

“Secure the area first,” Max berated his new friend. “I don't know where you're from, but death is around every corner here. Now...”

Without waiting for a response, he moved over to a doorway he'd spotted near the corner of the room. It was behind a pile of debris, and it took a bit of a struggle to reach it, but reach it he did. Even then, he had to risk making a noise kicking the remains of a door away. After that though, he slid easily through, and was delighted to find stairs leading up beyond, and pretty much intact too.

Moving carefully in the gloom, there was no window here, he crept carefully up, pausing a moment to wait for the stranger as he slithered through after him, muttering to himself all the while.

Shaking his head at such childish behaviour, Max carried on up, and was rewarded by an almost clean room, with a old, but still usable bed, a table and several chairs. There was a skeleton in one corner, dressed in ancient tattered rags and holding what looked like a book, but otherwise the room was almost a museum. He shook his head. Whomever the unfortunate tenant was, he, or she, and their people had long been overwhelmed and subsumed by the war.

“Oh my god,” exclaimed the man, as he stood beside Max and looked around. “There's a dead person here!”

“Yes?” Max replied, raising an eyebrow and moving over to the window, careful not to walk in front of it. “There are dead people everywhere. Surely it's the same where you come from. Where is that by the way?” He peered carefully round the edge of the frame, through broken glass, and scanned the terrain beyond. There was no sign of movement nearby, though he could see the glare of fires burning in the distance, towards his lines.

“We usually bury our dead,” the man replied, ignoring the other question. He strode over to Max, and Max had to put an arm out to stop him standing in front of the window. It was as if the man had no concept of basic warfare!

“What?” the man asked. “Oh, don't stand in front of the window right?”

“Where are you from?” Max asked again, by way of reply. “And what's your name anyway?”

“Oh, sorry. Where are my manners?” The fellow held a hand out. “Salzar. My name's Salzar, Master Magician, well Junior Tier Master, but still. And you?”

“Max,” Max replied, looking curiously at the outstretched hand of this odd chap. “A what?”

“Magician,” said Salzar, still holding his hand out.

“What's a magician?” Max enquired.

Sighing, Salzard lowered his hand. “Oh dear, this is going to take some explaining.”


>>>>

Okay, it's weak I know, but the Suggestion Phase here is: What form does the artefact shard take, that Max has in his pocket? The only constraints are that (currently) it's small and metallic looking. Anything and everything else in on the table.

And thank you for reading!

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2020 9:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe a ring. Or a perfect metal sphere. Or a set of nail clippers.

Razz

Just thinking out loud here.
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 04, 2020 1:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Key wrote:
Maybe a ring. Or a perfect metal sphere. Or a set of nail clippers.

Razz

Just thinking out loud here.


Oh, some nice ideas as usual your most rotundness.

Thank you Key, my sole reader! Sad
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2020 12:46 pm    Post subject: Castle Reply with quote

Dave

The castle was much further away than it first appeared. Dave wasn't sure if that was because there was something odd about how far things seemed in this world, wherever he was, or he just wasn't used to being outside of a city, where you couldn't see more than a block or so.

In any case, his journey so far had been devoid of excitement, which was certainly not what he'd been expecting. After his brutal killing, in self defence he justified to himself, he'd expected a big hullabaloo and outcry, and people looking for him. In fact, there had been nothing.

He'd dragged the body off the road, and, feeling like a grave robber, searched the poor departed for anything valuable. There was a pouch with six square coins of some undefined metal with a hole in the middle, which he'd, slightly guiltily, sequestered. Apart from the knife, which Dave decided to leave, there was nothing of else of apparent value or use, so he'd laid Marvak, if that had been his name, in as a respectful position as possible by this side of the road, and moved on.

The road was well maintained, although it had certainly not been made from anything he would have called 'modern'. It appeared to have been constructed of finely ground stone, melded together in some way, like gravel with glue. It was comfortable to walk on, with a slight elastic property, and he'd made what he thought was good time, all the while trying to make sense of the last few, bewildering, hours.

So far, he reasoned, the small robot that had, somehow, transported him here, was what the 'melted men', as he'd decided to name them, were after. And yet it seemed, from what the little robot had said, that there were other 'pieces' to the, well, puzzle. It followed, therefore, that this was just a piece of a larger game, and it also followed that the melted men would be coming after this piece too. Which meant time was of the essence.

He trudged onwards, making his way along the pathway, meeting very few people along the way, all of whom appeared to be simple farmer folk who gave him puzzled looks and a wide berth. Dwellings were far and few between here, and those that he passed were set back from the road, and appeared to be simple, single floor houses. Most could be described as 'rude', he decided.

As he walked up and down the slight hills towards the castle though, the surroundings became more suburban and less rural. Traffic increased, and the people he passed seemed to be dressed in more sophisticated outfits, with the women garbed in fantastic silk-like gowns of many colours. The men were less flamboyantly attired, mainly appearing in dark brown robes. Most wore daggers at their belts, and some, short swords. Dave felt very out of place amongst them, and he was the subject of many a strange look.

It's like ancient Japan, he thought to himself, except the people were taller than he would have though for that era, and didn't look very oriental. Indeed, their skin colour was much the same as his, a 'standard' Caucasian, with hair that was mostly dark. The faces though did look slightly Asian, although with slimmer, longer noses than he would expect from that region.

In short then, nothing like anywhere from his world.

Standing out as he did, and approaching the castle, which was now visible over the rooftops of ever larger buildings, he was not overly surprised when a squad of four official looking people in red outfits approached him.

The group, three men and one woman, all wore the by now familiar silk-type robes over what appeared to be leather armour. Their also wore some kind of protective leggins, and long black boots. Each had a long, slim sword hanging from their belt, and three of them also sported a rather absurd, triangular, helmet.

Dave stopped as the from man, a fellow alarmingly tall and muscular, approached him and bowed slightly.

“Hi,” Dave said, with what he hoped was a winning smile.

“Visitor,” the man replied in polite, but firm and, more importantly, understandable, tones. “May I please see your warrant?”

“Er, okay.” Dave pulled a face and decided on the straightforward approach. “I would be happy to oblige, except I'm not sure what a warrant is. I mean, I know what it is where I come from, but I suspect that won't be what you're talking about.”

“Where are you from?” the man replied, apparently unphased.

“Oh boy, that's a story, suffice to say, you'll not have heard of it I'm thinking.” Dave smiled again.

“What is your destination and business here?” The man was apparently imperturbable.

“I was heading towards the castle,” Dave nodded at the one visible tower. “I think there's something there that I need to...” He stopped. Four swords were now only centimetres from his throat.

“This is not allowed!” hissed their leader.

“Woah, take it easy big fellow,” Dave replied, taking a step backwards. The swords followed him with utter accuracy. These people weren't as boisterous as his poor deceased friend Marvak it seemed, but just as fervent. “I'm here to see the person in charge,” he said, upping the game.

“What?” the man replied, apparently confused.

Dave took a deep breath. “Here's something I never thought I'd say,” he muttered to himself, before facing his new pal again.

“Take me to your leader,” he said, clearly.


Xy.


Princess Xy caressed her sword, newly restored to her at the direction of her father.

She held it, still sheathed, in her hand as she supervised her new domain, still barely believing that her father had acquiesced to her request.

The man in front of her, Masqiz, she knew his name to be, bowed low as she strolled into the stone walled room. Her personal guards stopped at the entrance, by her command.

“Princess Xy,” Masqiz said. “It is an honour to...”

“Quiet.” Xy cut him off with a sharp word and a gesture as she looked around. As she suspected, her presence was not welcomed. It was an upset in the status-quo, and if her people had one weakness, it was that they didn't like the status-quo disturbed.

So she had decided upon a strategy, evolved it actually, over many hours of planning should this eventuality actually come to pass.

Xy was highly intelligent, and this, in a female, was something that, in her world, was barely acknowledged as possible. Only her status, and the Emperor's fondness for his eldest daughter, had managed to propel her this far. She had to make a strong impression from the very start.

“I am Princess Xy, as you well know,” she said, addressing the many staff in the room. “I have been given command of the Imperial Defence Force by my father, the Emperor.” She paused and glared at everyone, daring them to challenge her in any tiny way.

“You will listen to me.” She walked forward, between the desks, glaring at the workers as they stood to attention. “You will obey me.” She practically snarled at one man who dared to look her in the eye. He quickly dropped his head. “I will tolerate no insubordination. My word is law, second only to my father. Is this understood?”

“Yes Commander,” the whole office replied as one, trained to obedience.

“Mmm,” Xy replied. She knew what she looked like to them. A young, untried girl, using her position to play at being in power. “Who is the best swordsman here?” She asked.

There was hesitation. The staff looked at each other, confused.

Who?” she demanded again, far more forcefully this time.

Almost as one, the whole office pointed to a large man standing in the corner. Xy had overlooked him before because, despite his size, he appeared to blend into the background.

“Who are you?” she demanded, walking up to him. She had to crain her neck. The man was a mountain, large in stature as well as height.

“Commander, my name is Yran,” he replied.

“Mmm.” Xy narrowed her eyes. The man was a giant, but had the ability to appear smaller than her. There was more to this person. Still, she had to make a point. “Good. Outside.”

Obediently, Yran nodded and filed out into the courtyard.

Xy looked around. “You may want to watch,” she said, before following.

*

It was moments later, but it felt far longer. Yran stood opposite her, surrounded by onlookers. Xy herself evaluated the man as they prepared.

Her opponent was a giant, that much was very clear, but it was also obvious, to her at least, that that was what he expected people to see. From the way he held himself she knew that he was very aware of his surroundings, and that every movement he made was carefully calculated. Others wouldn't have seen the way he held himself, the way he purposely moved, but she had been trained by the very, very best. The ones that trained the ones that trained. She had spent a large proportion of her young life to the marital arts, with access to resources only those at the very top had.

And she was good. The best, her instructors had said, grudgingly because, even though she was Imperial, she was a female. This attitude, all by itself, drove her harder than anything else.

“Sergeant Yran,” she said, in a loud, clear voice. “You have my permission.” She paused. “No. You are commanded to attack me. You are commanded to do your very best to kill me.” She looked around. “You are all witness to this. In the unlikely circumstance that I am hurt, or worse, this loyal trooper is not to be held to account. Do I make myself clear? This is by royal decree.”

There was a general, but accepting, movement around the yard. Even so, she knew that, should the poor man kill her, he would not be allowed to live. A person killing a member of the royal household and walking away? Unthinkable. Even so, this was part of the responsibility of command.

“Very well then.” Xy looked at the poor Yran. “Soldier, you are commanded. Commanded I say, to try and kill me in single combat, by whatever means necessary as you would on the battlefield. Do you understand?”

“I understand Princess,” Yran replied, smoothly.

Xy smiled to herself. The man had accepted her challenge. She would have a fight worth the name it seemed.

“Very well.”

She pulled Silver Terror from its sheath and assumed the, appropriate she felt, position of Royal Eagle.

Smiling, Yran drew his own blade, and stepped forward, into the stance of Dark Edge.

And attacked.

>>>>>

Oooh! Fight!

However, time for some thinking. I want something unexpected to happen here, maybe that interrupts the fight, maybe, well, I don't know, it is unexpected!

So, er, what is it? Come on chaps, I need Insparatium!!

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2020 3:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm... well, the most obvious event would be Dave showing up/being brought in, though I don't know if that counts as unexpected, or if they would interrupt the fight for that. I guess they might bring him in and then he gets the wrong idea when he sees the fight and tries to interrupt it himself.

Maybe Yran, who's "more than he seems", is actually an enemy, a skilled assassin who's going to take advantage of the opportunity to really try to kill her with some underhanded means like poison or magic.

Or maybe her father hears what's happening and interrupts the fight. Or he's assassinated and she loses her protector and position.

I'm sure it'll be good, whatever you decide.

Smile
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2020 10:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Woah! Some great ideas there Key! Many thanks your rotundness! Very Happy
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:29 am    Post subject: Apocolypto - Castle Battle Reply with quote

Dave


Dave stood between his captors as they all watched the events in the yard unfold.  They'd arrived just as the slight girl, who seemed to him to be about twelve years old, challenged the giant of a warrior to a death-match, or so it seemed. 

“Who is she?” he asked the guard next to him, the woman. 

“She is Princess Xy, daughter of the emperor,” was the curt reply.

Dave raised his eyebrows.  It seemed that they'd taken him at his word when he asked to see their leader. 

He hadn't been badly treated, they'd not even disarmed him, which made him wonder a little bit.  Maybe they thought the hatchet wasn't much of a threat.  He wondered if they even recognised the gun.  He decided to keep quiet about both.

They'd escorted him at a brisk pace into the castle, through quite fearsome looking defences, and onto a platform that overlooked a yard, which was full of soldier types circling the main event.  He heard the challenge by the girl, and wondered if he would actually get to speak to her.  It didn't seem likely that a slight thing like her would last long against the monster she now faced.

“Very well,” he heard her say, before pulling a long, slim and very shiny blade from the scabbard she'd been holding.  Even from where Dave was standing, it looked very sharp and extremely deadly.  These people weren't playing about.

The warrior she faced pulled his own sword out.  It was of the same style, but larger, as one would expect.  Not as shiny either, but no less lethal looking all the same.  He also pulled out a long dagger, almost a sword in itself, and held it in his other hand.

“She's going to be butchered!” Dave exclaimed.

“Quiet!” the other guard jabbed him in the side.

They all looked on, rapt, as the man attacked.  His blades moved so fast Dave could barely see them.  Both of his weapons sliced through the air, cutting across each other in a way that ensured at least one would strike their target.

But the girl, the princess, moved like nothing he'd ever seen.  She slipped through the attack like it was moving through water, and her own weapon blurred in return. 

Then the two were standing again, back where they had started.  The exception was that blood was dripping down the man's arm. 

“Fuck me,” Dave murmured to himself.  He'd not even seen the hit!  “That was unbelievable.”

After what seemed like a minute of nothing, where the two opponents stood and stared at each other, there was another exchange.  Longer this time.  A flurry of swordplay, again, almost too fast to follow.  This time blade met blade, and sparks flew.  The young princess used her small size to her advantage, eluding the man's strikes whilst slipping in some of her own.

Still, she didn't go unscathed entirely.  When they parted again there was a thin line of red down her shoulder, spilling on to the immaculate silken cloth she was wearing.  Her larger opponent though, again came off worse.  This time he had a gash on his thigh, and not a minor one either.  Dave could see his leggings staining as the blood flowed. 

He adjusted his stance, and Dave was sure he was about to attack again, when something distracted him, distracted them all. 

A black line, a tear in the very air next to the man, ripped open, and a large, familiar, black garbed figure stepped into view, as if slipping through some kind of invisible curtain. 

“They're here!” he cried, reaching for his hatchet, “The Melted Men!”

*

Xy


After the second exchange, Princess Xy knew that the fight was over.  The wound on Y'ren meant he had to attack, finish her quickly, but now she had the measure of him.  He was good, as she'd suspected.  He'd been trained, and trained well, probably by the monks in the south from his style, but she'd been trained just as well, and her training had been her entire life. 

He was tensing, ready to spring again, when the very air itself split in two, and some beast stepped though.  It was a large, man-shaped creature, but no man was this.  A pale, skull-like head was practically split in half by a wide mouth, full of a tangle of sharp teeth.  Long arms terminated at wicked, claw-like skeletal hands.

The beast flipped its black cloak aside and leaped at Y'ran, which proved to be a foolish move.  With his sword already out, the warrior had no trouble slicing through the attacker's neck, decapitating it with a clean strike.

The thing wasn't alone though, and now it was followed by others of it's ilk, piling through the invisible doorway so fast they almost landed on top of each other. 

“Get them!” screamed Xy, leaping forward and cutting the arm off the nearest one with a downward strike.

The courtyard erupted as the audience, all highly trained fighters, leaped into the fray.  These creatures, whatever they were, could barely have chosen a worse spot to emerge, thought Xy, as she dealt a death blow to the the thing she'd de-armed.

Still, they poured out of their strange gap by the dozen, and Xy was forced back, simply by sheer numbers. 

“Princess, you must come with us!”  Suddenly her personal guard was there, swords out as they moved between her and the attackers.

Xy turned, understanding now that her duty was to coordinate the fight, rather than be a foot soldier.  However, it wasn't to be so simple.  Another rip opened behind her, and more things stepped through.

“They're behind us,” she gasped, dodging a pale claw and thrusting Silver Light through the beast's chest.  It dropped as any man would have done, only to be replaced by another.

“This way,” her guard said, stepping around her and pushing her to the side.  Her other guard held off the creatures the two of them rushed up onto the platform, towards another way out.

The way here was blocked too though, with a scuffle of men fighting with more of the creatures, who had seemingly climbed the walls as easily as  spiders. 

“Push through!” she commanded, and her guard, Selvia, did as she was ordered, moving ahead of the princess and into the melee, striking down one of the invaders with a slice from behind.

Xy was after her in a flash, swinging and thrusting on all sides. 

Here her small size worked both for and against her.  For, as she could manoeuvrer better than the larger men, and beasts, but worse in that she couldn't see where she was going, or what was happening around her. 

She stabbed a black thing in the side, and barely held on to her sword as another beast crashed into her, knocking her flying.  Managing a roll, she avoided a follow up slash by the creature, but then she saw it also held a sword.  Whether it was one captured from her men, or one it had brought from whatever hell it had come from, she didn't know, but she did know she wouldn't be able to block it in time.

There was an almighty explosion, like nothing she'd ever heard before, and the thing's head erupted in a mass of bone and grey matter.  It fell backwards, to be quickly trampled underfoot by the combatants. 

A hand reached out to her. 

“Princess!” said a strangely accented voice. “Come with me if you want to live!”

*

Dave


The girl looked at him for only a moment before grasping his hand and allowing herself to be pulled up.  It was like lifting a feather, she was so light, and Dave marvelled at how such a slight figure could be so deadly.

He didn't have time to marvel long, as another two Melted Men were approaching.  He dispatched one with anther shot to the head, whilst the second was taken out by a nearby warrior.

“Target particle detected in close proximity.”  A voice in his ear suddenly piped up, and he twisted his head around to find his little robot friend standing on his shoulder once again, somehow defying all the laws of gravity by not falling off.

“You!”  The newly rescued princess was staring at him, and his little robot.  “You're the Messenger!”

“I am?”  Dave ducked as a Melted tried to take his head off.  The young princess cut it down, barely noticing it, staring at him all the while.

“We've been waiting for you for centuries!” she exclaimed.  Kicking another of the creatures in the knee, and then stabbing it in the eye socket. 

“Er, well.  Sorry it took so long,” Dave said, a trifle unnerved by her casual slaughter.  “Hi.  Dave.” 

“Come with me,” she ordered, turning towards the way he'd come in with his, now otherwise occupied, guards.  The princess barked a command out to another female warrior as he tried to follow, and then several more.

Immediately the fighters became more organised, forming a line and pushing the Melted Men ahead of them, slicing and chopping with deadly efficiency.  Dave was just glad he'd met poor old Marvak when he first arrived here, and not one of these chaps.  He doubted he'd have been so lucky with them.

The tide seemed to be turning in the battle now.  The castle militia, or whatever they were, had overcome their surprise and were now forming up in formation, allowing them to work as a team, which proved to be quite devastating to the Melted, who seemed to work without any real structure.  Plus, someone had raised the alarm, Dave could hear a bell ringing frantically somewhere, and more soldiers were streaming into the fight.

With these developments going on around him, he soon found himself, alongside the princess and her guard, emerge into the wide corridor he'd come down when he'd entered the place.

Troops were rushing the other way, and he flattened himself against the wall, half expecting to be trampled, but as soon as they saw the princess they stopped and moved aside, allowing them clear passage.

Glancing to make sure he was still there, she waved to follow, and they jogged off, against the general flow of traffic. 

It was like some kind of weird version of the parting of the Red sea, Dave thought, as they charged forward, through troops that literally, in some cases, leaped aside to get out of their way. 

As a result it was only a minute before they entered a massive hall, fantastically decorated it blue and white, with flags and magnificent tapestries lining the walls.  He nearly tripped over, trying to gape as they jogged along the now much clearer area.

The princess was just approaching a large set of double doors, which still had several soldiers at their posts Dave noted, when they were flung open to reveal a tall man in flowing golden robes. 

Immediately everyone, including the princess, fell to one knee, taking him by total surprise.

The man stopped and glared at the still-standing Dave, who stood there, gulping like a goldfish.

“There he is,” the man said authority exuding from every pore.  “The one who murdered the high priest.  Kill him at once.”


>>>>>

Oops, action is needed straight away!  What does Dave try and do?  Run? Fight? Plead? 

Well, okay, it's not a great SP, sorry about that, but I had to stop somewhere. And yay!  I had a spurt of inspiration for this chapter.  Maybe my old muse has come back.  One can only hope.  I'm not even drunk!  Yet.  :Smile

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 10, 2020 3:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think we have to talk our way out in some way. Saying "I'm the Messenger" might help, since whoever the Messenger is might be more important than the High Priest, and the Princess seems to think we're him.

If that doesn't work, then use the gun to shoot the first guard to come at you, and then point it at the Emperor.

Worst comes to worst, shoot the Emperor. Maybe the Princess will take power and like us better.
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 11, 2020 8:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Do you know, I never thought about him using the gun? Nice one once again your Keyness!

And thank you for reading. Smile
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 26, 2020 9:41 am    Post subject: Scifi/Fantasy - Apocolypto - Item Reply with quote

Max


“I don't believe you,” Max said.

The magician, Salzar, sighed, and tugged absent mindedly on one the sleeves of his robe.

“You must be some kind of spy!” Max went on. “What you're saying is impossible! There's not such thing as magic.”

“Yet you just saw me take out half a dozen men with it,” Salzar retorted.

“Half a dozen, pshaw”, Max said. “Just three.”

“Three then, but I used magic to do it. The spell's called Blue Snapper, one of my specialities actually.” The so called mage paused. “Though I will admit, that's the first time I've used it for real. It certainly worked better than I expected it to...” he paused, then sat up straight. “Oh!”

The two men were sitting on the floor, on some cushions and rags they'd salvaged from the room. In between them a dull, smokeless, fire glowed, a product of some of Max's meagre supplies.

“What?” the soldier asked. He nibbled on some rations from his pack. Against his better judgement he'd offered Salzar some, but the man had declined, saying something about a sustenance charm.

“You say there's no magic here?”

Sighing, Max nodded. “There's no such thing as magic,” he repeated, as much to try and convince himself as anything. He had, after all, actually seen what the other man had said was a battle spell.

“So you have no protective runes or wards on you?”

Max looked blankly at him, so Salzar rolled up one of his sleeves. Tattooed all up his arm were strange writings. Writings that made Max's eyes water to look at. They seemed to be shimmering somehow.

“These,” Salzar explained, oblivious to Max's reaction, “Are defensive wards. Every magician has them, even the commoners have some where I come from. If the men downstairs didn't have any, then they had no resistance at all to my attack. Mmmm.” He scratched his chin and rolled the sleeve back down, to Max's relief. “That means I can scale back the power of any spell I cast here. Are you sure no one has these?”

“I'm certain.” Max nodded.

“Good news then. Speaking of which, you said you'd found something. I do believe that it could be the very thing I'm looking for, which would be a happy chance.”

Slightly warily, Max felt around in his pocket and dug out the shiny item that he'd picked up just before his world had collapsed. He'd actually not had time to examine it, so he did now.

It was a metal sphere, or it seemed to be metal. Somehow it didn't feel like metal. Max didn't know what it felt like, except that it appeared to be slightly warm. At first he put that down to having been in his pocket, but as he held it, it seemed to be getting...

“No! Quick, don't let it...” Salzar's warning came too late.

There was a flash, and what felt like a tiny bolt of lighting pierced his brain. There was a moment of intense pain, and then a small tone.

Max, gasping for breath, opened his eyes, just in time to see the sphere melt and flow up his hand to form itself as a ring around his right index finger, where it solidified.

“New User accepted,” a toneless voice in his head said.

“What the hell was that?” he asked, panting hard. The headache started to subside.

“Crap. This could be a problem,” Salzar said, obviously annoyed.

“What?” Max asked, rubbing at his head. “What by the Universe was that?”

“Did you hear a voice?” the magician asked. “In your head?”

“Yes, right after the intense pain,” he replied.

“Bugger it.”

“Again, what?”

Salzar sighed and readjusted himself on his temporary seating. “It's linked itself to you,” he explained. “The item I'm after has been split into a number of pieces. Each piece is kind of... sentient.”

“Sentient?” Max frowned. “You mean it's alive?”

“No, no, not alive,” was the reply. “Well, I don't think you'd say that. But it's sentient, sort of. Anyway, they bond to a person, after which that person becomes the...” Salzar frowned. “I don't know what you'd call the relationship.”

“It said User,” Max said.

“Mmm, interesting. That would almost seem to imply that it was in charge.” Salzar rubbed his chin.

“So what does it mean then?”

The magician looked at him. “It means,” he said. “That you're going to have to come with me.”

*

Salzar

The soldier made a face. “Go with you where?” he asked.

Salzar sighed. This would make things harder, although in some ways having a companion could be useful. “The device that I'm trying to assemble, of which your... ring,” he gestured at the man's newly decorated finger, “is a piece, is an artefact that was designed to re-enforce the walls of the various dimensions. Without it, those walls could collapse, which would allow the dimensions to, well, merge doesn't express the severity of it.” He paused as he took in the look on his new friend's face.

“What are you talking about?” Max asked.

Shaking his head, Salzar leaned forward. “Okay, look. This world, this universe, you do understand the concept of universe yes? You swore by it earlier after all.”

“Yes, I'm aware I'm on a planet floating in space,” Max snapped back.

“Very well, so this universe is only one of, er, I'm not sure how many exactly, but at least a dozen. They all coexist in, sort of, the same space, separated from each other by by the width of a breath. The barriers between them are, for various reasons I'll explain another time, weakening. If they weaken too much the universes will come together, which will cause a calamity so large I lack the vocabulary to describe it.”

He paused, and watched the man process this information.

“So, end of the world then?”

“End of the universe, times about a dozen,” Salzar replied.

“Bugger.”

“Exactly. So you see why I need that piece. Unfortunately, unless I kill you, I can't take it without taking you. When I have all the pieces, then, and only then, can they be... extracted.” Actually, he wasn't at all sure of this, but he didn't want to hurt his own case.

“So, you want me to go where with you?” Max asked, nibbling on his ration bar.

“The next universe along, and the next and so on.”

Max raised his eyebrows. “Off this world?”

“Off this universe.”

The soldier slumped backwards. “Well.” He looked around, taking in the broken room. Salzar let him thing things through. It was a lot to take in for sure.

“Very well.”

“What?” The magician raised his eyebrows.

“I'll go with you.” Seeing Salzar's expression the soldier went on. “I don't know what your universe is like, or any of these others, but this one, at least this world, has been at war for longer than I've been alive. The whole world is a giant battlefield. I don't even know why it started, I don't know why we're fighting still. All I know is that my whole life has been about killing and death. I'm sick of it. I'm sick of living in mud. I'm sick of seeing people around me die. Take me away from here.” Salzar was shocked to see tears in the man's eyes. “Please,” he said.

Nodding, he shifted. “Very well. We'll leave first thing in the morning if that's okay. I could use a rest before we transfer. It's a taxing spell, and I'd like to gather my energies.”

“First thing then,” Max said. “Let's get some sleep. You can take the bed if you like.”

Salzar looked at the bed, and remembered the skeleton that the soldier had moved earlier.

“I'll be okay on the floor,” he said.

[center]{} [/center]


Salzar yawned and turned over. Despite his fears, he'd slept like a log. No doubt the result of the stress of the previous day.

He opened his eyes and looked into the muzzle of one of the strange weapons that this world used. It was practically pressed up against his forehead.

“Good morning yes?”

Blinking, Salzar looked up at the figure holding the weapon. He looked like a native of this world, on the outside at least. However, his spells were still strong, and one of them was Clear Sight. It revealed the truth of what he was looking at.

This was not a native of his universe, although it would appear to be to the natives no doubt. No, this was a white skinned being with sunken eyes and too many teeth jutting out of an oversized mouth.

“You will tell me where it is,” the thing hissed. “Or I will make you very sorry indeed.”

Glancing about, Salzar took in the room, which held several soldiers dressed in dark grey uniforms, different uniforms, he noted, from Max's. They, at least, appeared to be real natives.

Of Max there was no sign.


>>>>

Very well, he's faced with a Melted Man (we assume, ahem) and some enemy soldiers (we assume). FYI, the gun to his head may or may not get through his wards, as it's so close. Plus we don't know if it's a normal weapon, the MM could have something more powerful.

Salzar's actions then? Ideas welcome, 'cos I don't bloody know.

<<<<<

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2020 5:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I guess the first order of business would be to say "I don't know where it is" which is both a) true and b) the response that seems most likely to get the thing to let us keep talking.

After that, I'd look for an opportunity to get off some offensive spells. We seem to be pretty badass in combat, and I don't think talking is going to keep us alive very long. If there's so much war going on in this world, maybe we can stall until these soldiers get attacked, which could provide a distraction.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2020 2:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Key, and apologies for the rather poor DP. I don't seem to be throwing much challenge out there recently.

I'll try harder! Confused
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 06, 2020 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've not forgotten about this or my other current SGames, just FYI.

I've been working on something else that could earn me some* money, so priorities priorities, although it's also writing, and it's even related to one of my stories first written on here many millions of years ago.

More news on this as/if it progresses.



*Probably not all that much, that Lamborghini and mansion isn't likely on the radar just yet.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2020 10:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Max

A lifetime at war had made Max cautious, even when there was apparently no need for it, and now this caution paid off.

He'd woken up early, and slipped outside to check the area and relieve himself, both of which he'd done. However, his return, which had been a stealthy one, had been interrupted. He'd ducked down behind some rubble as a group of enemy soldiers had marched up. They had been led by a large man in a captain's uniform, and Max had had to rub his eyes. There had been something... wrong about the leader. He looked somehow, well, blurred was about the only way to describe it.

Sighing to himself, he'd watched as the soldiers, four men and two women, the captain included, had walked confidently up to the the entrance to their hiding place. It seemed as if they knew where they were, which made Max frown. Maybe they thought their own men were still there, but then these appeared to be from a different unit altogether, from their uniforms and insignia.

One woman was left on guard outside, whilst the rest went on it, leaving Max with a dilemma. Should he wait, or try and rescue his new friend? The so called magician was the only one who knew what his ring did, or was, and having tried to remove it, unsuccessfully, Max didn't want to lose that source of information.

On the other hand he wanted to remain living too.

“Bugger it,” he decided, after a minute of consideration. Pulling his knife from its sheath, he circled around the building as quietly as he could, until he came around the other side, which was closer to the sentry.

The woman on duty was young, as in fact most soldiers were. At nearly thirty, Max was a rare old man in his unit. Few troops survived to live to such a ripe old age. In any case, young meant impatience, which he was certain would work in his favour here.

Sure enough, the guard started fidgeting within a few minutes. Then she began pacing up and down, which gave him the opportunity that he'd been waiting for.

As she paced away from him he moved swiftly. Coming up behind her, he clamped one hand over her mouth and used the other to cut her throat with the knife.

It wasn't the instant death some thought It was, but he was ready, having done this before. She struggled for some seconds, but he held her tight, and slowly she subsided.

Laying her down quietly, he shook his head. She was a young, attractive, woman. “What a waste,” he muttered to himself as he peered in the doorway. There were no other guards, so he slipped quietly inside and made his way over to the bottom of the stairs.

Peering through the gap, he could hear talking. One voice was Salzar.

“They can't see who you really are can they?” he was saying.

“Keep them talking,” Max whispered, treading carefully on the first stair, and unslinging his captured machine gun.

“Where is it?” he heard another voice answer, as he crept slowly forward. “We know it is nearby. You must have it.”

Max made it another step before his luck ran out.

“Stop!” cried a voice from the top of the stairs.

Thanking the Universe for sending him an idiot, Max didn't waste time replying, but simply opened fire. A brief burst of sound, and the man fell back.

Max did the same, in a more controlled fashion, making it to the corner of the stairs before answering fire smashed into the floor where he'd been standing. He put the gun around the corner and fired back blindly, emptying the magazine.

There was more shouting from upstairs, and more shots back, but then there was another sound, one that he'd heard only once before.

There were screams and brief blasts of explosion.

The firing stopped, but the shouting didn't, nor did the explosions.

Replacing the empty magazine with a full one, Max peered carefully around the corner and upwards. Blue lightning flashed across his vision, followed by dull retorts. It seemed his friend was using his magic again.

Throwing caution to the wind, he dashed upstairs, to see Salzar extend a long finger at... something. It was dressed in a captain's uniform, but it certainly wasn't of this world. A bald, skull-like, white head, with jaws filled with monstrous teeth snapped forward at the mage, who threw up his other hand in reply. Another flash, and the captain thing was pushed back.

It snarled again, and moved forward to attack in return, swinging with a hand that was more claw-like than anything.

Max didn't wait any longer. He opened up with his machine gun again, blasting the thing from behind.

Whatever it was, it wasn't invulnerable to good old fashioned lead. It shrieked as the projectiles impacted it, stitching a line of gore up its back.

That, and another blast of blue lighting from Salzar was enough. With a final shriek of rage, the creature succumbed, falling onto the charred corpse of one of his men.

“Thank you,” Salzar said. He lowered his hands and bent over, gasping for breath. “I thought I was done for for a minute there.”

“What the hell is that thing?” Max replied, stepping forward and grimacing at the creature. It was bubbling, melting, where it lay. “It's dissolving!” he added.

“So it seems.” The mage nodded.

“So what is it then?” Repeated Max.

“I'm not sure, but it's not from around here, that's for sure.” The wizard knelt down and, to Max's disgust, stuck a finger into the thing's face, pulling out a digit covered in slimy goo.

“By the Universe!” Max exclaimed, as the other man sniffed at the residue.

“It had wards, magical wards,” Salzar said, wiping the gunk off on the thing's uniform. “It had an illusion that made it look like one of your species,” he added. “Which, all by itself, says it has other-verse origins.”

“When I saw them come in it looked, kind of, blurred to me,” Max nodded, checking the other enemy fallen to make sure they were dead. Old instincts die hard.

“That will be the ring you wear,” Salzar said. “It has certain benefits. They'll probably get stronger the longer you're together.” He looked up. “Are you ready? This thing was looking for the segment. We should move on quickly.”

“Move on, as in...”

“Yes, move to the next universe.”

“Wow.” Max looked around. “Let me salvage a few things first,” he said. “A few more magazines wouldn't go amiss. And rations.”

“Good idea,” Salzar replied.

They set about scavenging.

>>>>

Okay, short and sweet, but at least it's something! So, better SP this time, I hope.

What is the next universe like? Well, wherever they land.

All suggestions, big and small welcome!

<<<<
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 4:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm, ok. Just tossing out some ideas:
  • How about a dimension that seems like Heaven, where everybody is happy and kind? Or so it seems...
  • A universe where anything you've ever dreamt is real.
  • A universe that's inside someone else's dream.
  • A place where they simulate universes, including the one Max and Salazar were just in, and somehow they've gotten out of the simulation.
  • A mazelike world where there are no open spaces, just claustrophobic labyrinths.
  • The land of the dead.
  • A universe of sentient stars.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2020 2:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

OOoh, nice ones. Thanks Key!
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 02, 2021 11:28 am    Post subject: Apocolypto - The Emperor. Reply with quote

Dave.

Dave's survival instinct kicked in as two of the golden garbed man's entourage leaped forward, pulled long swords smoothly out of scabbards as they did so. In turn he drew the pistol he'd inherited out and shot the closest one in the chest.

The shot rang around the hall, and the unfortunate warrior was blown backwards by the force of the impact, to come to rest spread eagled on the immaculately tiled floor.

However, these people were no cowards. Even though the second fighter saw his companion go down under what could have been some kind of magic for all he knew, he carried on with his attack.

Dave brought the pistol around and fired again, but the warrior was a quick learner, jinking to one side, and the shot missed. His sword was already sweeping down as Dave frantically aimed again, but even as he did, he knew it was too late.

The sword clanged against metal a hair's breath from his exposed neck.

“No.”

The young princess was now standing next to him. Her sword had intercepted the guard's attack, and she now batted it off to one side.

Dave hesitated, and the attacking warrior did the same, not, it seemed, because of his gun, but because of the princess. Having seen her fight, Dave could understand the man's trepidation.

“What is the meaning of this impertinence?” The leader, standing with arms folded, apparently unconcerned by his gun's ability, demanded.

“Father,” the princess said, sheathing her sword and stepping forward. “I need to speak with you.”

The man, the king it seemed, looked at her and then at Dave, and then back at her. “Very well. Clear the room.”

Instantly the surrounding men and women scattered, and in moments Dave found himself alone in a giant hall with royalty. He lowered his gun.

“Stay,” hissed the princess, and strode towards her father, who waited for her with an odd expression on his face. Dave couldn't decide if it was pride or anger.

The young girl bowed her head briefly, perfunctorily, as she stood in front of the man, and then proceeded to speak to him in urgent tones that were too low for Dave to hear.

The man listened to her for a minute, frowning and glancing at Dave from time to time. Eventually the princess stopped speaking and took a step back. She dropped her head, suddenly humble.

“It seems that today is a momentous day,” the man said. “Your coming has been foretold.”

“Right,” Dave said, unsure of what else to say.

“You are the messenger then?”

Sighing, Dave took a half a step forward, but then stopped as the princess glared at him. He stopped again and cleared his throat.

“Your Kingness,” he started.

“He is the Emperor!” hissed princess Xy.

Oh dear, thought Dave, not a good start. He tried again. “Emperor. Please accept my apologies for any offence given, I intended none. I am a traveller from... far far away and am unfamiliar with your customs.”

“So much I can see from your battle wand, and your clothes,” the Emperor said. “Proceed.”

“You are correct, I am on a mission.” Dave hadn't realised he was until this very second, but it kind of made sense. He went on. “However, I am new to this er, quest. I have taken up the mantle from the one who fell before me. I have been... guided here by...” He paused, unsure of whether or not to carry on, but then shrugged. In for a penny.

Reaching into his pocket, he pulled out his little robot friend and held it up for the others to see. “This, er, little man, has guided me here. Frankly, I am unsure as to what to do next, but I... feel that you know something of this.” He realised he really did feel this. No doubt this was part of the data downloaded into his brain when he'd first picked up the robot.

“You see father!” the princess said. “He has a piece.”

“It seems you are correct daughter,” said the emperor. Suddenly his shoulders slumped slightly, and for the first time, Dave saw the man underneath the ruler. The father even.

“You know what this means,” princess Xy said. She seemed excited.

Shaking his head, her father gripped her shoulder. “I do, I fear far more than you. I...” he paused, and Dave saw that he was actually holding back tears. “I feared this would happen. Ever since your birth I have had premonitions that you would be the one.” He shook his head. “Yet the Great Eye does not care what a humble man cares. Destiny is written on the great fabric of Life, and yours has been woven in golden thread.”

Princess Xy suddenly seemed to grasp what the man was saying. Dave wished he understood. He watched as she bowed deeply. “Father. You have trained me well. I am second in the Arts only to you. I can, I will carry out this mission. If I can return to you after, should I live, I will.”

“I know it daughter,” the emperor said. He took a deep breath. “Go. Go and collect it. See me before you leave if you are able.”

Bowing more deeply, the princess stepped backwards until she reached Dave. “Come,” she said to him, turning and walking away.

Giving a brief bow to the emperor himself, Dave followed.

~*~

Xy

Xy's heart was beating fast as she led the messenger, the Dave as he'd called himself, through the palace towards her quarters.

Selvia joined her shortly after she left the hall, falling in behind her and just behind the Messenger, her hand on her sword. Her guard's presence seemed to make the Dave slightly jumpy.

When she started climbing the stairs to her quarters the Dave followed for several steps, until Selvia shouted and leaped in front of him. Hand on the hilt of her sword.

The Dave looked at her in confusion.

“These are my quarters,” Xy explained to the strange man. “No man is allowed here.” She looked at Selvia. “Usually,” she added. “In this case Selvia, you may accompany us.”

“But...” Her guard captain was torn between standing orders and her Princess's wishes.

“I'm okay,” the Dave said. “I can wait here.”

“No,” Xy said. “You will come.” She turned and carried on. After a few moments the other two followed.

The walk to her chamber seemed to take a long time. It dawned on her that this could be the last time she ever came this way. Shaking her head, she shook off the sentimentality. This was what she had really been trained for! Not being in the guard. Unlike her father, she had always know, somehow, that this would be the case.

Arriving at her chamber, she nodded to Selvia, allowing the Dave to follow her into an area that would, normally, result in his painful and prolonged torture, starting with having his eyes removed for gazing upon her inner sanctum. Pretty much everything else would also, eventually, be removed before he was finally allowed to die.

Not caring that the other two could see, she opened the secret panel in the base of her bed, taking out the purple velvet and unrolling it. The shiny metallic object glistened, and she took a deep breath. Never before had she been allowed to actually touch it.

Now though. Now was the time. She picked it up.


>>>>

OMFG! Look at me writing stuff! Lordy lordy!

Still, not exactly an original SP! We've had a small robot, a round sphere (that turned into a ring), what is this one?

Something shiny it says, but don't let that limit your ideas

thank you for your patience waiting for this one.

>>>>

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2021 10:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A coin. Or a long, sharp pin. Or a computer chip. Or a watch.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 07, 2021 11:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excellent Key! Many thanks!

Sigh. There's something wrong with IF. When I posted this, it was a chapter post, so I went back in to edit it, but when I had, and pressed SUBMIT it just goes to a preview post page.

This happens a lot! Help?
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 13, 2021 5:45 pm    Post subject: Re: Apocolypto - The Emperor. Reply with quote

Chinaren wrote:
>>>>

OMFG! Look at me writing stuff! Lordy lordy!
>>>>


Wait, I didn't realise I was in this story.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2021 1:40 am    Post subject: Re: Apocolypto - The Emperor. Reply with quote

LordoftheNight wrote:
Chinaren wrote:
>>>>

OMFG! Look at me writing stuff! Lordy lordy!
>>>>


Wait, I didn't realise I was in this story.


Very Happy
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