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Old 05-30-2009, 08:36 AM
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Goldenkitten Goldenkitten is offline
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Location: Valhalla
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Default ::Story:: - We Kill for the Emperor!

Hello everyone. This is my first submitted work to this site. I may submit shorter works in the future but this will be my largest, a tale from the mans transformation into a hero until his fall.

This is 100% an independent storyline. It will be told in the grand tradition of an epic, in other words the focus of the tale Sindri Gabranth is the only hero. He does not exist in the world of Dragon Tavern as a whole like some characters but rather his own personalized version, the version I imagine in my mind as the character explores. Thus while he will run into custom friends and enemies for the storyline he will never run into other heroes, some fit into a world that has other heroes to adventure with but he is not one of them. This is a story about the grand deeds he does in a world that is turned upside down and what the greatest hero to arise in that world does to change it forever. Obviously this is not based wholly on the actual champion on DT as he is not even my most powerful character, let alone the most powerful on the site. He is however the one who fills me with the most muse and like any other hero on the site always has the potential to be something great and so that is what this story stems from.

Please, I am completely open to criticisms or compliments, throw them at me as you will. My writing can only improve if you aid me in spotting my weaknesses.

Thanks you very much and I hope you enjoy.

--------------------------------------------------------------

We Kill for the Emperor!
__________________
Uriel Cerelabrus (Level 53 War Master)
Laetitia Fakauln (Level 52 Inquisitor)
Kharl Lleterii (Level 52 Black Seer)
Sindri Gabranth (Level 48 Zealot)
Uveyn Everioun (Level 42 Moon Elf Cultivator)
Relsie Venam (Level 52 Inquisitor - HARDCORE/Alive)
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Old 05-30-2009, 08:38 AM
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Goldenkitten Goldenkitten is offline
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Default Chapter 1 - Purity

Chapter 1
Purity


The Zealot is seen in a different light depending on where in the world you are looking at them from. To the people of the mountains they are fanatical maniacs who are dangerous in their devotion but thankfully have little sway in outside lands, to the dead ones they are bane manifest both being the very anti-thesis for what the other stands for. Even those of the mighty Empire itself have varying outlooks, many peasants might look on these individuals as beacons of light and guiding hands of the emperor himself but to many of the military branches they are seen as damnable failures who could never survive in a true order, a few intelligent commoners a cut above the rest using their greater knowledge to create a minor rule over even lesser louts and only accepted because the Emperor deems it so. No matter which way they are seen though few view them as what they truly are, humans like all the rest and humans who perhaps were not always the uncompromising bastions of faith they eventually become. More over though those with vision and charisma might gather relatively impressive forces they are never more than mobs who do things their own way.

This is the tale of one man whose faith was not steadfast, who had no seeming charisma, he never had even one follower and who for the better majority of his early life lived on the streets barely managing to exist from day to day. This is the tale of one man who became the most feared Zealot in centuries, whose speeches decided the fate of cities, who built an army of crusaders and whose life went on to change the world.

It began in the town of Viola; a holding of moderate size but great wealth situated near the Empires Ashpeak borders. In Viola a few rich individuals lived on top of all others with many taking harsher employments and yet still others living as slaves directly under the slovenly rich or worse yet working the gem rich mines that fueled the aristocracies coffers. It might seem a strange place for heresy to take root what with the poor praying to the Emperor to alleviate their burdens and the rich owing their wealth to him and yet heretical tendencies did take root and over time as was always the norm the tendencies became the norm. Soon words of deceit and corruption were no longer whispered in the shadows but rather shouted in the streets, hands were no longer traded behind cloaked veils but thrown to the air in the center marketplace. Viola was just far enough from the center of the Empire that its putrefaction went on longer than should have been possible but even the malcontents knew their change could not be hidden forever, they needed to prepare for the Emperors coming…they needed to prepare for rebellion.

“GET BACK BOY!!! The Changing has no needs for the likes of you!”

The harsh voice echoed out across the square and was followed quickly by piercing snaps. A vagabond in dirty black robes came rolling to a stop in the street as city guards hit him with short stubby leather flails even once he came to a halt laying unmoving on the ground. A few smacks and he pushed himself to his feet before fleeing the scene while all manner of individuals cheered the guards on, the rich, the commoner and the poor. The man finally put some distance between himself and them, after whipping around a nearby corner the guards gave up chase not actually caring about him before returning to their posts. The man who had called him out in the first place stood upon a pedestal in the middle of the square surrounded by all those previously mentioned people and now he went back to wailing heresies into the air about the vile emperor who they said was no god, they said he was not even a man.

The one who had gone running peeked back around the corner and stared at the occasion with lazy eyes, looking at him as he stood still it became apparent he was no man; he was little more than a boy. Though his face looked young his tattered appearance and cold expression bespoke the years of life he had transcended all the same. What his interest in the matter was could not be ascertained but one could swear he held concealed hatred behind his eyes, and frightening eyes they were, though they appeared to be glazed hazel from a life of hardship something deeper seemed to pierce through any that passed before him. He had long flowing black hair and even though it was caked with dirt and grime at the moment it was clear it would have been beautiful if it were ever touched by water. His complexion and frame were less luxurious, his skin pallid and his structure ten times to small the bones poking through the skin though there was a form of musculature there as well.

Observing the vile event taking place in the courtyard for a moment longer he turned on his heel and walked off down several dirty back alleys before settling down beneath a bent sheet of metal pulled from the backing of some slum house which he had clearly been using as shelter. He sat down against the wall and fumbled through a sack that lay underneath the overhang but after finding nothing inside he simply stared up at the sky. Staying like this for a while it was obvious his mind was racing, that much more was going on behind his eyes than he let on but unless you were a mind reader it was impossible to tell what he was thinking. Then out of nowhere an excited voice called out and he lazily lulled his head to the side his piercing gaze shooting down the alley as two boys, one several years his younger and one perhaps just a tad his senior came his direction. They looked like brothers both sharing the same amber mane of hair and honey colored eyes, it was clear the younger one would be the spitting image of the elder in a few years. They were both adorned it tatty cotton cloaks and to large pants, the clothing of most who worked in the houses of the rich.

“Gabranth!” The young boy called out as he bounded toward the homeless boy, the older one added, “Hello Sindri.”

Sindri Gabranth looked at these boys and his facial expression softened a bit though it could hardly be called a smile and all the while he continued to stare through them as if he could see their very souls, “Elliot and Alexander…how are you?”

“We’re good!” Replied the younger Alexander, everything’s good. His elder brother simply shook his head and looked down the alley in both directions while Alexander sat down in front of Sindri. He pulled out a small half-wrapped package of bread from beneath his cloak and despite Sindri’s calm and collected demeanor he could hardly help himself from lashing out and practically ripping the morsel from the boys hands. He had already shoved half of it down his maw when the younger boy staring at him with giant wide eyes said, “Tell me another history story!”

Sindri choked down what was in his throat and then asked in his typical monotone, “What kind of story?”

“Heroes! Like Xavier saving the Empire, or that one about slaying the leviathan!”

Sindri seemed to chuckle but did as he was asked, relating a tale long past from the pages of history while the young Alexander let off a chorus of “Oohs” and “Ahhs”. His brother Elliot stood behind the younger boy as he constantly looked down the alley in both directions, he was beyond on edge the whole while but he seemed to crack a smile at his brother’s amusement. Sindri seemed to be at the climax of his tale and even his tone had risen a bit as if to encapsulate the energy behind the events he spoke of when a massive cacophony of cheers rose from the central courtyard. Sindri went silent for a moment while Alexander turned his head questioningly and Elliot sneered.

The elder brother spoke before anyone else, “They will get us all killed, damn them to the underworld. We cannot let this go on.”

Sindri reorganized himself from storytelling mode, “You’re last attempt did not work to well as I recall…you were lucky they didn’t realize it was you.”

“It was YOU’RE plan!” The boy turned around on him with a vicious scowl and pointed a finger.

“Yes…but you picked some rather untrustworthy help, had it actually gone as I had suggested the city would not find itself in the situation it now does. As it stands we will all die no matter who wins this battle.” He spoke with zero emotion in his voice and just as little on his face.

Elliot on the other hand responded with a surprised look as if he didn’t understand and then backed it up by saying, “What?!”

“If the ones who rise up win then anyone who does not benefit them shall be dead and if they fail, which is the more likely case, the inquisitors will burn us all. The city has become diseased and they will no discriminate, to be safe they WILL kill everyone within to insure the heresy does not seep beyond these walls.”

That left Elliot flabbergasted, he seemed ready to argue but then a glum look of understanding came across his face as he realized the words were true. His brother though younger and less educated realized the conversation had turned from fun now and had a grim look to match his brothers. The older boy spoke again, “But…my brother. Please Sindri if you have any ideas! I promised my mother I would always keep him safe.”

“Do not worry so much…while I do hate being a leader even I value my life, I will do what is necessary. What needs to happen is already in the works, for now you just need to wait and direct the attention of you’re less loyal towards what shall be happening in the city very soon. Tallos and Orius for example, they will be useful but they need proof of what is going to happen to us if they fail to act…but that shall come soon.”

“What do you mean?” Both brothers asked in unison.

But before Sindri could reply someone yelled from down the alley, screaming at the top of his lungs. It took a moment but soon it became obvious that the voice was headed for the central square and what he was saying became just as clear, a giant smile appeared across Sindris face suggesting he was enjoying this more than he would ever have let on. He looked toward the boys who were staring at him wide-eyed, “Return to your jobs for the time being. Make sure the eyes of those still loyal to the Emperor are on the royals tonight…they will have all the proof they need.”

The brothers quickly got their bearings and ran off down the alley leaving Sindri leaning against his wall staring at the sky with as little care as he had before their arrival.

In the background the voice yelled out over growing murmurs from the other citizens, “GOVERNOR!!! GOVERNOR!!! THE INQUISITORS ARE COMING TO MEET YOU!!!”

That night the atmosphere throughout the city was tense as it could be. The inquisitorial sanction had not come with fire as some might have believed but rather with words, as it turned out they had not even heard murmurs of Violas wavering but were instead on their way to purge a den of demons and simply needed a place to stay. Regardless the inquisitors were a suspicious breed and there was plenty going on within this pit of vipers to arouse suspicions. They asked strange questions of the nobles and commoners alike, they studied the dais which had been erected in the center of town and went about other mischief but night was fast approaching and they were weary from days of riding. At long last they retired from the streets uncertain or uncaring of what signs they had seen in favor of food and a fresh bed in the home of the governor alongside his royal kin. The night dragged on in a solemn tone most of the townspeople staying inside and doing nothing to arouse suspicion as the governor had quickly ordered before the arrival of the inquisition.

The town stayed that way well into the middle of the night and then just when it looked like things were going to roll over without event heavy footfalls could be heard hurtling down the same alley the brothers had come down earlier in the day. Three boys, one of them Elliot appeared out of the near darkness and found an open-eyed Sindri in the exact place he had been left staring up at the stars now, as they came to a stop he lazily gazed in their direction once more. The three halted where they were and preceded to take deep gasping breaths of air, they had obviously been running for several minutes at least. One of the boys had dark short hair and uncertain eyes and was of the age of Elliot while the other was far larger than everyone else present and a tad older to back it up with a shaved head and stern expression. Elliot finally got his breath and looked at Sindri with worried and pleading eyes.

“Sindri…please…please help!”

“WAIT!!! This is him?!!!” Said the large man, “This is who you think will help us? Some waste of homeless filth?” he sounded damn near enraged.

Elliot looked ready to speak but just then Sindri began speaking while twirling his right hand in the air before him, “They struck down the inquisitors I imagine?”

“Yes…yes…wait, you knew?” Elliot looked confused.

“I assumed it would happen this way, I am glad to see others seem to have been awoken by the act.”

“Yes, many others. They…they poisoned the food and then went around stabbing them, I think…” he held his hand up to his mouth as if he was watching it happen all over again, “I think they were still conscious while it happened, and everyone, all of us saw it! Please, the Empire, its only a matter of time before they come and crush this whole town just like you said.”

“Wait! Why would they do that?” The younger boy nearly shrieked.

Sindri however ignored him and without standing up or acknowledging anyone but Elliot he spoke, “One of your work duties is fixing the chambers correct Elliot? Pulling out the old sheets and clothes to take below for cleaning?”

Elliot and the other two look confused but he stammered out, “Y-yes…but why?”

“Because” Sindri looked at him with a smirk on his face and a gleam in his eye, “I think it’s time you and your friends became nobles.”

The next day began like any other, the markets once again bustling and heretical calls coming from the central courtyard as the governor and his lot spoke of how even the emperors “demons”, the inquisitors in other words, were no match for them. Every once in a while a loud cheer would go up and in their fervor none of them seemed to notice that several new and well-clothed individuals were standing amongst them. It wouldn’t matter if anyone did notice them so long as one was close enough by that point, at that time the plan would be very simple.

Sindri however was not amongst the group, he had honestly considered himself little more than an observer until the past month at which point Elliot had found him and after a few exchanged words the boy seemed to latch on to Sindris natural intelligence. Since then Sindri had been feeding the boy who wanted to take action plans he would create, as he didn’t want to die either. Thus this day had arose and though he was ready to take control head on if need be he quickly realized that even in the clothing he would be easily recognized being one of the few homeless who hadn’t magically “disappeared” for reasons nobody could explain in the last month. However anyone who thought he wasn’t watching his plan take form from somewhere close would be sorely mistaken.

Thirty meters…twenty meters….ten…Elliot and his people who there were no less than a dozen of were making easy headway through the crowd. After all they were dressed as royals and no commoner would dare stand in their way, it was when they got to the front that they would have to be careful until they struck. They pushed through to the “mosh pit” of sorts, the group of the most fervent advocates of the “Changing” and were slowed down for a moment as they had to push past flailing limbs and swaying bodies. It appeared to be going well and yet the moment one of Elliots men stepped to the front a call went out. All of them froze and their hands went to their waist where they had hidden all manner of sharp instruments they could fashion into semi-weapons, ready to strike out. It was one of the nobles who had been on the stage, he pointed out at the man who had come to the front and everything went very quiet.

“YOU THERE!!!” He pointed with anger in his eyes, “You’re my stable boy, I know that face! WHAT IS WITH THOSE CLOTHES?….Are…are those MY clothes?”

Before any further questions could go out the group followed the plan Sindri had put forth and stepped forward drawing their weapons and charging the stage. He had said if they were found out then they needed to move as quickly as possible or they would be crushed. Unfortunately even he underestimated the guard’s ability to react or possibly he overestimated the commoner’s ability to launch a capable attack. Either way those soldiers on the stage were upon them before they could even proceed up the stairs and parried the futile blows their makeshift weapons delivered, in a ten second period three of fifteen attackers were on the ground and at least one of them was dead. In another ten several more were on the ground or sporting wounds and then one of the girl attackers stepped back and pointed, one of the guards had Elliot in a headlock. Apparently he had noticed Elliot was the leader and sure enough most of the attackers backed off upon seeing him out of commission. As soon as everything had gone quiet the governor who had stepped back momentarily resituated himself and with a big smile spoke out.

“SEE!!! This is all the Emperor has on his side, a rag-tag bunch of paupers who can’t even claim victory with element of cowardice…or surprise, as I am sure they would call it. The Changing has begun and none can stand in its wake, today we purge the city, tomorrow the world! EXECUTE TH-”

Just as he was about to throw his hand forward to signal an attack a large and rough blade that seemed to be fashioned out of little more than a chipped off plate of metal cemented itself in the neck of the guard holding Elliot. The man freed his grip on the boy who stumbled forward while he probed the large protrusion from his neck with curiosity before falling face forward where upon he bled out. Nobody could respond as a black figure shot onstage and ripped the sword out of the nearest guards sheath while he watched his comrade fall, that guard was instantly cut down by his own weapon. Everyone’s attention shifted to the new attacker just in time to watch as Sindri Gabranth pulled his arm back and then with a graceful and venomous throw tossed the blade across the opening. It hit the governor who had been turning smack-dab in the forehead and for a moment he looked on in unbelief before collapsing, instantly dead. As it happened Elliot roared and stabbed the nearest guard and this spurred the other commoners to rush forward and plunge their weapons into the backs of the turned protectors. Only a few were able to realize their mistake in time to turn around but they were quickly overwhelmed by the now superior numbers of the attackers and soon they were dead. In a single moment the leader of the heretics was dead and so were most of his high-ranking followers as the group slew most of the other nobles who had been on stage as they tried to run.

As soon as the last one died a piercing silence took the stage as stunned onlookers watched the nobly cloaked and blood covered revolutionaries finish their act. Most of the group were wide-eyed themselves, as if they couldn’t believe they had pulled it off. Elliot had a big smile on his face and turned around to face his brother who had been in the group despite his age, once they had comforted each other they turned to Sindri. He was a hard man to read, he looked neither surprised nor particularly happy but one could swear a grand sort of entertainment shimmered in his eyes. Some of the group whispered but everything remained relatively silent until Sindri walked up to stand where the governor had been before, taking the initiative nobody else seemed ready to.

“Greetings” he began, though his voice was quiet it seemed capable of carrying out to everyone present, seeping into their ears like magic no matter how far away they stood, “I will not be long, it is you’re decision if you wish to keep up this insane facade and bring down the emperors wrath, your fate really means little to me. However I will say this, when the hammer of the Empire falls upon this village…and believe me it will, everyone here will die, loyal or not the inquisition does not take chances. So, if you are a steadfast believer in him…or you just want to live this is your chance to leave. I’ll trust whoever does because only the truly indoctrinated would now remain, believing they could win against the fury the Steel Empire shall bring…”

He gave a glum smirk and then walked offstage.

Twenty minutes later nearly forty men and women, a handful of pilfered horses and cows and one cart full of food and other necessities were moving down the road, putting as much distance as they could between the city and themselves. They had no real trouble getting out, most had been prepared beforehand and the few guards at the entrance were hardly ready to try and fight off a giant group forty strong, some now armed in the armor and weapons of the fallen guards from before. At the front Elliot and Alexander took long strides side by side, they no longer looked happy now knowing what lay before them but at the same time they radiated freedom, as if for the first time in their lives their fates were their own.

Most of those who had attacked those on the stage marched directly behind them while Sindri stood off to the side, though few would have recognized him. In the short time the others used to pack their things the man had washed his hair and face, pulling the former into a ponytail that was just as beautiful as its tattered form had always suggested. He sported a new pair of dark robes though they were hardly high quality, a few pieces of the guards steel armor were placed on his shoulders and a steel sword hung by his side. More than anything though he seemed to be carrying a newfound aura of power and perhaps a tinge of darkness but that was hardly unexpected when you had just killed as many men as you could count on a hand…and in fact with that hand. As they got farther away one of the girls who had attacked with them, Annabelle was her name, came forward and spoke. Though she said it out loud it was clearly aimed at Sindri, just the first of many signs of the respect he was garnering.

“See its true, the Emperor guided us back there…guided you.” Everyone, even Sindri seemed a little bit surprised by how enamored her voice sounded but he replied quickly.

“Perhaps, or perhaps not. Not sure how I feel about the Emperor but I do know when a battle is futile, getting out was our only chance of survival, the Empire can crush nations if it puts its mind to it.”

Before he could even finish she began, “No, no. I saw him, he aided you.”

Some exchanged odd looks with each other, Sindri just studied her with a passive glaze for a moment and an awkward silence pervaded the air before Elliot finally spoke up and brought it to an end, “S…so, where to now?”

Sindri let the silence continue on for a moment longer before he broke off and walked up to where Elliot was, “Not quite sure yet. But me? I’m going this way.” He walked off down a dirt road that’s view was taken up half by prairie land and half by the looming Ashpeak Mountains far off in the distance. After a few more exchanged glances between the group most of them simply shrugged and followed off after the fledgling leader.
__________________
Uriel Cerelabrus (Level 53 War Master)
Laetitia Fakauln (Level 52 Inquisitor)
Kharl Lleterii (Level 52 Black Seer)
Sindri Gabranth (Level 48 Zealot)
Uveyn Everioun (Level 42 Moon Elf Cultivator)
Relsie Venam (Level 52 Inquisitor - HARDCORE/Alive)
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