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  1. STORMONT. A SECOND AGE NARRATIVE The Age of Heroes The Last General and The First Ghul Mercer drew his Viking ax, taking a half step forward even as the rest of the entourage shifted away slightly. “You’re an embarrassment. A traitor to a great man and a disappointment to everything Kiánard Logan stood for.” The sentiment was clear in his words. He fully intended on killing Wulf where he stood. It looked as if Wulf wasn't going to respond at all at first. Except he was darting forward in the next moment. Pike at the ready. Mercer met him part way. They clashed. Mercer deflected the pike. Sidestepped. Wulf dogged him closely. Didn't let him get the space he needed. The other man (creature, beast - the people of Andorra had no adequate word to describe the being they did not yet know was a Ghul) stood watching the pair as they exchanged blows. It, he, seemed patient at first. That was until he smiled, wide and gleeful, and readied his own pike. There was barely a moment's notice before he attacked the remaining commanders with a wide swing of his arm. While not particularly fast, the Ghul's sheer strength leant him a certain unexpected speed. Bert and Sindarin were both within his reach and were caught off guard as the Ghul struck them both down with a single blow. Caught more by the Ghul's fist than the pike Bert hit the sodden ground hard. He bounced and rolled, coming to rest in the shallow waters on the bank with a pained groan. His sword went flying from his grip and lodged in the sand a few feet away. Sindarin took the brunt of the blow from the pike where there was slightly less power and while he landed in the deeper waters, cushioning his fall a little, he was winded and immediately struggled to sit up to avoid drowning. A ripple of distress and anger ran through the men and women watching on the far bank and it seemed as though they were about to surge forward in defence of their leaders. “Hold your positions!” Korbin ordered sharply. The movement had been minute from the corner of his eye, but he knew the hearts of those standing with them and had to stop them from charging in recklessly. They would just get themselves killed if they charged en-mass without thought. He continued to watch the scene closely, mind turning over strategies and trying to analyse this new addition to the enemy forces. The soldiers shifted uncomfortably, but resumed their ranks and settled again. Many now held their weapons at the ready, eager to intervene. Korbin drew his battle ax, glancing to one side to meet Aserah and Elia’s gazes and receiving a nod from each. They needed to be careful here, but they’d grant him sanction to act as he thought he needed. Looking to his other side, he nodded to Rubik and Gregorious as the other two men landed their Argentavis to join him, drawn by the unexpected commotion. The Dark Lord was nowhere to be seen so it was safe for Gregorious to fight in close quarters. The Ghul was moving again, rounding on Oghren as he took a ready stance. Oghren retreated a step or two as the Ghul advanced step by patient step, grin still in place. He looked pleased with himself, having taken out half of those that had stood before them in just one blow. This time the attack came as an over-head swing of his pike, that same speed forcing the dwarf to quickly lift his battle ax and brace to catch it before it hit him. Hurried footsteps running through the water caught his attention. Oghren almost faltered on pure instinct as they closed in right behind him. The pike came down from above in a blur. A splash and clash of metal on metal - sparks flew as the blades struck one another. The scene seemed to freeze in place. Pressed in close and braced at Oghren’s side now, Korbin grit his teeth as he took some of the weight off of his friend. The trio were at an impasse for but two seconds. Metal ground and screeched against metal and the dwarves shifted. Deflected the pike down to the side. Stepped around each other and swung their axes almost in union. Growling now, the Ghul sidestepped. Dodged one and intercepted the other against his free arm. Oghren’s eyes widened as the Ghul took hold of the haft of his ax. It was dislodged from its arm and firmly pulled out of Oghren’s grasp. Gregorious rushed forward to try and help. Korbin corrected his stance. Tried to anticipate the Ghul’s next attack. A gunshot sounded - struck the Ghul in the already-wounded arm. He barely blinked and within seconds the two commanders and Gregorious were throwing up dust and water as they hit the ground. Oghren had been bodily thrown into the feral while Korbin was hit with a solid blow to the center of his chest. Mercer and Wulf paused in their fight as Korbin skidded through the sodden sand nearby them. Both on par, for the moment at least, neither had taken any significant wounds. Blood slipped down the side of Wulf’s face beneath his helm and Mercer sported a split lip. Mercer’s desert gear had taken some damage and there was blood showing through some of the tears. Wulf’s under armour was in a similar state, but his armour had offered him much better protection. “Yer alright there, brother?” Mercer asked, side-eyeing his friend without fully taking his attention from his opponent. Korbin coughed as he fought for breath for a moment. “Yeah. Yeah, I’m good.” He coughed again, pushing up to his feet as quickly as he could. --To Be Continued-- Word Count: 955
  2. BlueBird

    Writer's Block

    Writer's block An intangible yet devastating phenomenon for anyone trying to write prose. It can be the difference between making or breaking a writer and each of us deals with it differently. From the complete break down of a previously well thought-out writing plan that has us spending hours reformulating how we're going to proceed - to the smallest word escaping our grasp and preventing us from finding a satisfactory continuation to our stories, a writer's block may differ in severity but unites many in their frustrations and hours hopelessly spent trying to correct what wasn't wrong in the first place. I've been writing for almost fifteen years now (fanfiction, original, educational and opinion-based articles and reports, and personal journals) and definitely for more than half my life. So when I say that I spent my fair share struggling through block after block, it's no exaggeration. However, I'm only one person and have built up my own biased ways of getting back into writing or circumventing a writer's block. My style may not be flashy, or even the most engaging but by starting this writers block I will share with you all a lot some of my writings, random plot ideas and thoughts, and most likely more than a few of my struggles with writer's block and other general difficulties with forming a simple sentence. My blocks will differ greatly in size/length, but I hope that even just some of my words will reach you, entertain you, move you, or even help you through your own ideas and struggles. First up, the as-yet incomplete Narrative for the ending of the Second Age; an Ark story line presented and created by our own overlord WolvesEthereal
  3. BlueBird

    Shadow Bound

    Shadow Bound An original story still in writing So, for several years now I've had a story idea circling around in my head. I've not often come back to actually work on it, but I feel that my writing technique has improved greatly since I first conceived the idea. It may take me several more years to finish this project, however I'd like to at least make these first steps in doing so. Here's the synopsis I wrote for myself, along with a short world-state concept. Please bear in mind I'm still figuring out a lot of the main plot, but any thoughts and points of discussion are appreciated. There is a reason that so many of us crave the daylight, living in the ‘day’ rather than the ‘night.’ There is a reason why we fear the dark as children. Some grow out of that fear. Most don’t, not really. Not deep down in the psyche where things such as a trivial fear of the dark can be denied and hidden away. As for those that do, well, that’s because they’re not like the rest of us. They’re not human. They’re nothing but shadows in disguise. Daemons sent to sow discord and strife throughout the world. Or so I used to believe. Before I was bound to protect one. The story of Shadow Bound is set in the modern world, England, in a thriving city hub where our MC, [WIP NAME] lives and works. Due to moving around a lot in recent years I have yet to decide on a city to base him but it will most likely be Birmingham, Manchester or Liverpool. The main concept of the story is that there are several realms to the world; the mundane, which is perceived by all, and which is the only realm most humans can see and interact with. Then there are two other realms which the MC will interact with during the narrative, though only one will become a commonality for him; the Shadow realm and the realm of the Sidhe (Or the Fairy's realm). The sticking point for those of other realms is that they exist in one space - what happens in one realm (deforestation, the building of towns and cities, earthquakes and other natural disasters) happens in all of them, and the mundane realm (including those in it) overlaps the others where they do not overlap each other. I.e. those of the Shadow and Sidhe realms can see and influence mundane humans from their own realms, but cannot see and/or influence each other. Humans once made a pact with those we know as "Supernatural" beings (those who reside on/come from any but the mundane realm), and several bloodlines became known as "Realm Guardians" in order to protect the peace between the races and police the realms against those that would destroy or twist the nature of the barriers between realms. And more recently, to protect the other realms from the increasingly aware humans that would do them harm simply because they are different. Our MC is the last of a bloodline sworn to a more specific duty - protecting the true royal line of the shadow realm. Only the eldest born, and therefore the current monarch, of the royal family is bound to one of the MC's bloodline. At the death of the shadow monarch, the next in line activates the now-latent magic to bind them to the most suitable guardian available. Unfortunately for our MC, that's him. Unfortunately for the shadow monarch, our MC was a mundane human unaware of anything beyond the human realm and the only one with the latent pact magic still alive. Unfortunately for both, there are rogue shadow-dwellers trying to wipe out the shadow monarchs.
  4. A/N: Before we get started with the narrative, I'd like to point out that these updates won't conform to any proper schedule. I write when I'm able to and forcing it usually leads to pages being scrapped when I reread something. These chapters won't really differ in length to those found on the server website but the old chapters posted here will more thoroughly beta read for continuity and grammatical errors. STORMONT. A SECOND AGE NARRATIVE The Age of Heroes The March The sun blazed over head as they rode out to the arid badlands. They had pushed through a wind storm earlier that morning and thankfully it had cleared by the time the rearguard had crossed into the badlands. Forced to abandon their strongest mounts due to the wyverns' strange behaviour, most were utilising Equus, Argentavis, and even Unicorns. A Brontosaurus strode among the horde of creatures, followed by riderless Equus that would act as replacement mounts for those predicted to be lost in the fighting. The Brontosaurus was easily the largest creature present among the masses and it was to serve as the mobile command center, its platform saddle built up as a small but well stocked supply unit. A look out with a radio and spyglass sat atop the small structure and kept their sights on the horizon while a small team of Argentavis and Gryphon riders circled the army. The journey had been more difficult than anticipated without their wyverns, but they had planned long and hard for this coming battle. They wouldn't let something like this stop them now. While the date had only been set for about a month, it seemed as if the whole of Andorra had been anticipating this fight for over a year. The so-called prophet Azir had set them on this path when they had first learned of the Dark Lord and his plans. Now, they had gathered the peoples of the land that could (and would) fight and their numbers were immense. There were commanders present from most of the prevailing Kingdoms of the continent, each leading their own peoples. Even a few from the smaller settlements and tribes that had worked hard against the Dark Lord took pride of place among the strong-standing Kingdoms. The still newly dubbed Kingdom of Gaelach, though extremely small in total numbers, made up the majority of the command structure. Queen Elia Thrace and Lord Protector Oliver Mercer rode at the very front of the column, alongside Lady Aserah, Queen of the White Walkers, Sindarin the Pathfinder, Tribe Master Oghren of the Chargers, and Bertsson of Blackrock Trading (who wielded the late Kiánard Logan’s sword in tribute to his friend). Though the journey through the badlands was harsh, they knew where they were going and experience lead them through the crags and hills between Elyria and the sands. Several bridges were quickly erected for crossing the deep canyon there, allowing the army time to rest before proceeding. Dust rose around them, filling the air and obscuring the full extent of the army’s size as their feet pounded against the scorched earth. Eventually, the vanguard reached the river that bisected the dry, barren hills from the sandy dunes of the desert as the sun reached its zenith. The waters were at their shallowest here, and even those without mounts could cross with little difficulty. Mercer called a halt to their advance and surveyed their surroundings. A small boat came to a stop just downriver of the bridge, and the Golem known as Kal gave a grumble as she shifted on the now-grounded boat. Korbin carefully lead her ashore, and the general of the Gaelicans joined his brothers- and sisters-in-arms at the fore of the army. They were greeted warmly, however briefly, before everyone’s attention turned to the matter at hand. It had been the intention to set up camp at the old House of Wolves outpost where a war camp had first been constructed. However it seemed they were beaten to the punch, for across the shallow expanse of water stood two figures clad in black armour. With a few words spoken between the commanders and Queens, several of their number dismounted and stepped forward. First Mercer, and then Oghren, Sindarin and Bert began to cross the waters. “So the weak have come at last to meet their deaths.” Wulf looked over them, a pleased expression on his face as he leaned his pike against his shoulder. “Just as I foretold.” “Getting real tired of all this prophecy bullshit, Wulf,” Mercer responded, nonchalant as they came to a stop at a safe enough distance for melee combat. While they could see that Wulf carried a rifle, it was the pike he held at the ready. “It can’t be called prophecy if it’s stating the truth,” the feral grinned, goading. He shifted subtly, head tilting to drop the face guard of his helmet into place, readying for a fight. Word Count: 742
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