The Battle of Ablution was the final battle against the tyrant Taal Zodo. It depicts when the free people of Nor'Ova were finally able to rise up and defeat the dark god Zodo, destroying the physical manifestation of his spirit, which brought on the Ablution Event - a magic apocalypse that left this world in the state it is in now.
This event was role played by members and describes the close of the old forum RP campaign, Legends of Nor'Ova: Era of Torment. This is only the final portion of that RP thread that as titled "Battle of Ablution". No spellings or typos have been corrected, to preserve just how everything transpired. If anyone has the rest of it please let me know and I'll include it here.
Octasday the 28th of Marpenoth - Afternoon
850th year of the 4th Era
ZODO'S THRONE ROOM
Ithlamar, the sword of the redeemer. In all of the ages of it's creation from the very first battle against Taal Zodo when Ardatha refused it's beholder, Tannhauser, to travel with him, to now never has this sword been used for the purpose it was forged for. Indeed the only time it saw combat was ten years ago and even then it's beholder, Diantes, was spiriling down a dark path of doubt and anger and used the sword for it's obvious design, as a weapon. But such was never the sword's purpose.
The sword, as it's name would imply, was crafted to free Taal from his entrapment by the Fallen Lord and bring mercy upon the broken saint. It was meant to sever the bonds of hatred, judgement, vengence, and even depresion that kept Taal so tightly tethered to Zodo.
But redemption for the one who everyone saw as Zodo? Mercy for the physical embodiment of all evil? Man kind never seemed able to learn to forgive, to place themselves within Taal's shoes and understand why they must show mercy.
It is the great weakness which Zodo invested all of his energy into, one which he had assumed would keep him safe from the blade of sacred judgement, the sword of Legend which had been crafted by the very words of Mogen David and contained his sacred spirit. For as long as Zodo dwelled within the body of someone of pure heart against their will then he was safe from it. Never could Zodo have imagined that one day someone would find away to forgive Taal. It was just unthinkable.
But Calyna had forgiven Taal. Having dwelled within the eternal prision that is Xodod yet been shown mercy and forgiveness for all her past transgrettions, the warrior as Zodo mokingly had called her, had learned how to forgive, and in the very moment when all seemed doomed to failure, Redeemer reacted to her mercy.
Since never before had Redeemer been used in the manner it was designed for, none could have known how it was to react. As Taal Zodo screemed in frustration of Xyster and the life that refused to leave him, Ithlamar the Redeemer came down upon him. But not a single cut did it make in Taal's flesh. Instead the cut that would have been destined for Taal by any other sword left instead a surface cut upon Calyna, from the crown of her head down to her naval. The cut would not have been deep, life threatening, nor incredibly painful. Instead it was a simple scar that would forever serve as a reminder of her act of mercy as well as a symbolisim for Mogen David's great act of mercy so many ages ago. The sword, as all swords do, had to leave a mark. It had to do it's damage. After all that is the purpose of swords, to cut. But Calyna showed mercy, she showed Taal with her forgiveness, so the spirit within the sword paid for that forgiveness by instead cutting her physically, and cutting Zodo's spiritual hold and influence over both Calyna and Taal. No longer could the dark god's words cause her doubt.
As the Redeemer ousted the Fallen Lord, a howling screem let out and a loud clap of rolling thunder echoed throughout the chamber. Taal's body was litterally thrown against the back wall where he laid weekly, barely holding onto the little life that was left. Everything within the room quickly turned onto Calyna, determined to avenge their master's loss. The throne rose up upon her as a collection of bodies much like the hall before the room, and all of the bodies from the pits and those chasing after Aitre's childred decended instead upon Calyna. Even the skin that drapped the walls came tumbling down, turning into wraths and reaching forward to attack Calyna and her allies. All those within Forsaken who served the dark god made their rush towards the room, phade, undead golemns… they were all on their way.
Then the world let out a scream as the room filled with darkness and hatred. For in the place of where Taal Zodo once stood, a being of great beauty and wonder now stood. But despite the wonder of his presence this being was wrapped in the veil of pure evil. The halo of souls quickly spun around his head and his armor quickly adorned him. This was indeed Zodo in the flesh, the God of power, creator of magic, distorter of truth, prevertor of life, destroyer of order. This was the Fallen Lord, once the model for all life, now the corruptor of it. Now outside of Taal's flesh there was no filter to silence his evil, his uter hatred.
Quickly reacting, Zodo's attention turned towards Tiana who was rushing towards him. Growling, his medeloic voice sang a song of discord and hatred, "Return to me fallen hyrda, let not the angel come this way!" As the words rolled off his tounge, the once mighty hydra lord's heads rose from the pits, all seventeen of them, attached to their skelletal necks descending beneath the earth. All in various stages of rapid decomposition, these heads quickly surrounded Tiana and all those on the pathway, including Armis and Calyna.
Zodo's attention then fell upon Calyna, "You may have saved Taal, Jezelbel, but what good is the salvation when the time of Ablution is now at hand? For behold, what ought not to have been is now, and flesh adorns me as it did in the time before the eras. You, for all of your self righteousness and mercy, are too late."
He quickly turns towards Tiana, "Well, the time you have waited for has come at last. It is a pitty however you will not get near enough to do as you so promised. Take a look at your love, dying on the back corner. His life is fading, but at least his last few moments will be spent watching the skin being ripped off of the one he loves. How appropriate that he must watch the one he loves again lose her life for him, as had happened so long ago to bring him before me."
Xyster, who was dropped by the transformation, skirted away in mortal fear of the dark god, sneaking backward on his butt, hands and feet ever so slowly. Grentzen kneels down beside him, giving him a hand, "You. you are not hurt.. what potion has granted you this?" The barbarian states baffled to see no injury where Zodo's hand had entered his chest.
Xyster only snickers, "Spector said when we left, he would not see my death. The damnable wraith is keepin' me alive, which I knew he'd do. So I bought Calyna her time… "
Grentzen snickers, "Damn old fool, I should have known you'd plan for this. Now run along and tend to Taal. I am gonna see what I can do to help Tiana do her job."
As Xyster scurries away Grentzen approaches the dark god with his sword drawn, "Hey piss ant! For all your power you still nothing more than a piss ant. Come, lets finish that duel, here and now!"
Zodo quickly turned towards Grentzen, a dark grin crossing his face, "Fine, it is time I finally get to end your life." He raises his sword of Forsaken, and Grentzen and Zodo engage in a heated dual. As tehy duel, the hydra heads seem to loose focus. The duel is fierce, and Grentzen is able to hold up his own in straight sword combat, but the duel doesn't last long. For without the compassion of Taal, Zodo is down right dirty and murderous. Feeling no need to waste time with the barbarian, by their fourth sword cross Zodo blasts Grentzen with a powerful chaotic spell which within the twinkle of an eye blows a whole through Grentzen's middle section, pasting his internal organs on the wall behind him. Grentzen, the mighty barbarian and Capacitator of Capere, falls lifelessly.
Maelstrom's eyes widen as Zodo takes form and his gut drops when the heads of the Hydra Lord rise before them. Moving back and forth, Maelstrom tries desperately to fend out the hydra and the others coming within the room. Sweating and facing extreme exhaustion, Maelstrom mutters, "I am sorry.. my dear… I .. I don't know how much more I can take…."
Just as he had said those words the hydra's attention drifts. With Zodo in combat against Grentzen, he isn't able to hold a direct sway over them. Smiling he motions to Tiana, "Hurry, this may be your only chance!"
Arangoth gulps as Zodo takes form. Hearing the whispers of the children, tears develop quickly threatening to blur his vision. Saying with a sigh he states, "For all the evil and hatred you must feel in this room, there is something strong. Do you feel it? It is Mogen David, and he is with you now. He is with all of us, and despite the horrors of this day do know that today is a day of great celebration. Today mercy was shown, and for that today Zodo will fall never to torment ever again."
Callista watched in horrified awe as Xyster attacked the Dark Lord and should very well have killed the old alchemist. Something kept the man alive, however. Callista didn't take time to question this miracle. Entities of sheer evil were swarming up from the pits around the room, charging towards her and the others who would deny the evil deity's existence.
Gritting her teeth, she looked briefly to Aitre to make sure he was ready for this. The look on his face said plain and simple that he was ready and that this ended here and now. His determination put a tiny smile on the corners of Callista's lips, but it disappeared as she moved forward to intercept the oncoming horde.
Ruathian hugged close to his sister, but was quickly transfered over to Arangoth. Climbing up onto the large man's back, he draped his little legs over the man's shoulders and wrapped his arms around Arangoth's neck.
It was weird being on this man. He was burly and strong, yes, but he wasn't Mommy or Daddy. Ru let his eyes wander to the scene at the throne, watching in abject horror as Taal was flung from the newly formed true form of Zodo. Tears shone on his cheeks and he looked back to his mother, who was now coated in a mixture of dirt and blood, none of which he thought was hers.
In truth, only a small amount of the blood covering Callista's arms and face was hers. A few of the hands had gotten past her defenses and clawed into her flesh, but nothing too serious as of yet. With a snarl, she swung Guillotine in a wide arc, taking out a multitude of hands with the one swing. "Back to the Pits with you, vermin!" she snarled viciously, kicking a hand backwards as she lashed out again.
The transformation of Zodo caught her attention and she nearly faltered, barely catching a wild hand as it latched onto her shoulder. All five nails dug in simultaneously and she ripped the limb free with a pained yell. Spinning, she managed to block a few more hands, slicing them in two with Guillotine, but their urgency to kill her seemed to increase. "AITRE!" she screamed, looking to make sure her love was all right still.
Ruathian's bright sapphire orbs traveled from the beautifully powerful figure at the throne now, back to his mother. He watched in fear as she battled the hands he knew were meant to take out he and Kaina. A soft whimper left his lips as he watched a hand attach itself to his mom's shoulder, but relief flooded through him when she removed it. Something seemed to make the hands attack faster and more vigorously, sending Ru into a sort of frightened frenzy.
Shrieking for his mother, Ruathian leapt from Arangoth's shoulders, landing un-gracefully on the floor near Callista. Sobbing, he clawed his way through hand after hand, using the knife his parents had given him in case of emergency.
Sabre took in the hanging man with glee and pushed onwards at what could almost be considered a skip. Grinning maniacally, she stepped through the entrance into the hall made up of corpses without a second thought. Her swords twirled in ecstasy, slicing into hand and face alike as they reached out towards her, moaning in what sounded like pain. She didn't much care to take notice of their feelings. And why should she? They were her Father's victims and now that they were in the way of her getting to her Father. She doubted he'd care much - there were more to replace the ones she and Kor broke, after all.
"If his attention span is more than yours, he must have the attention span of a brick wall," Sabre snickered mentally to her brother, flashng an image of his still, stoic figure into his mind as she sliced the hand off of a flailing arm. At last, the hallway came to an end. With a triumphant… giggle?… she shoved one of the doors open. The maniacal sound echoed out from the hall and across the chamber, announcing her arrival to all within.
"My Lord!" she cried out, her amethyst eyes widening at the beautiful sight of her Father's true form. Her first instincts were to drop to one knee, but there were too many enemies around for that. Growling, she gauged who was the closest and took off at a sprint. She spotted the dragon girl and a man beside her dueling the heads of a hydra off to one side, then smirked at the lifeless Grentzen at her Father's feet. The old alchemist was too far, tending to the wounds of her Father's old, now useless shell, which left the large man and the… children? Oh, come on! She was ruthless, but even she wouldn't have brought children to this battle unless they had proven themselves worthy previously… which it seemed the children were doing so to some degree at the moment.
As much as she wouldn't mind killing off the little brats, Sabre decided it would be better to hurt them mentally first. "Get the gimp!" she laughed to her twin, sending a quick roundhouse towards the male brat. He skidded across the floor with a grunt, leaving Sabre one-on-one with the tall blonde. The hands followed him, causing Sabre to giggle again. "Catch him if you can," she chided, blocking the blonde's first strike with ease.
The pair dueled, back and forth, each woman determined not to be outdone by the other. For Callista, it was a matter of survival, keeping this vileness out of the world she and her children would be living in for the rest of their long, long lives. For Sabre, it was just another day of practice, this time in front of her Lord.
With a fierce yell, Callista raised Guillotine in a high arc. Sabre watched the pendulum shaped blade and jumped up. The blade passed beneath her feet and she grinned, stabbing with one and then the other sword. Callista followed through with her swing, spinning back half a step and lifting the large blade to block the Drow's attacks. She was vicious, but Callista intended to keep the vile woman and her idol from succeeding. As Sabre lunged forward for another flurry of blows, Callista narrowed her eyes and planted her feet. "No!" she growled, swinging Guillotine. The blade knocked into Sabre's blades, throwing the shots off of their intended mark. One sword managed to open up Callista's arm, but she paid no mind to the flash of pain. Stepping forward, she spun to put more strength behind the kick she sent in Sabre's direction.
Sabre lowered her blades, ready to protect herself from that damned blade, but she wasn't expecting to get kicked. Her eyes widened as the heel of Callista's boot connected with her gut and a whoosh of air left her open mouth. "KOR!" she shouted, flying backwards. Lashing out with her swords, she tried to stop her descent into the pit closest to the right door. Neither blade sunk in enough to stop her fall and soon enough, Sabre landed in a pile of unknown objects. "RRRAAAAAH!" she cried out, hurling a femur at the wall of the pit in frustration. Up above, Callista sighed with relief. One spawn of Zodo down, one to go… Wiping a bit of blood and grime from her face, she looked to Aitre before hurrying over to help her son continue to fight back the hands of Zodo.
Tiana paused as Redeemer struck Taal Zodo, forcing the 2 apart, she had seen a similar effect ten years ago but it had been incomplete, they had still been joined at the hip, hence why Legend still struck Taal in the side when Tiana had tried to defeat Zodo then.
She growled deep in her throat as Zodo addressed her, and she shook her head, "still delusional that this will end well for you. You said Taal was already dead, and you were wrong, lieing about that, said that Caylna was the wrong choice for Redeemer, and again, you were proven wrong, she and she alone could give Taal a second chance."
Tiana gripped Legened differently, preparing for a full impalement into the dark lord's chest when she heard some one come in and she hesitated for a few seconds, and Zodo summoned up the Hydra lord to stop her. When Grent stepped forward she cried out, "stop Grent!" but she knew it would fall on deaf ears and to soon she saw Grent murdered by Zodo, the only thing before that had stopped Zodo from out right blasting him the same way was Taal.
Tears welled up in her eyes, and she nodded her head at Maelstrom, he was right, Zodo was distracted, ready to gloat again over defeating the mighty barbarian, perhaps even raise him to fight Tiana. She HAD to prevent that, she took off running pumping her wings to get some height over the crawling corpses and undead pieces Zodo had summoned, "cover me father!" she called and was soon close enough to drive Legend straight into Zodo's black hole of a heart.
Icarias roared, the sound echoing off the walls as he watched his friend die, he would NOT go unavenged and Icarias spat molten lava at one of the Hydra's heads, trying to gain its attention but it seemed slugish, like it didnt want to fight when his ears picked up his daughter's call, and he answered swiftly, only way he could cover her was with his own body, like when he taught her to fly when she was a small child but he kept his talons off her, she didnt need to be held, but it would be hard for the hyrdra to get an actual bite in with out first chomping into Icarias, same with the balls of fire and other nasty surprises falling onto his hide and scale, fire idnt bother him so much as he often breathed it on himself, but there was only so much he could resist before getting burned, especially if blasted by magic first, but it was worth it to keep Tiana safe a few more seconds.
~*~ Kor laughed with his sister, running and slashing for Arangoth as he dashed by, then moving into the fray. So many targets, so little time… and there were bis Father's own creations to deal with. It was a brutal and messy battle… and exactly his sort of good time.
Like Sabre, he caught sight of one of the children, and went for the one she'd missed, but a sudden wall of rock put him off his balance, and he lifted an eyebrow slightly, moving to shatter it before four more walls of rock clashed up around him, and he grit his teeth, growling slightly. "Brat…" he whispered. The box was too small for him to lift his sword… so the chilren weren't here for quite no reason after all.
Letting out a roar, he closed his eyes and called up his more rarely used abilities, blasting the rock prison to pieces around him, sending shards of the stone flying through the room. He freed himself just in time to see his sister fall. His eyes widened, and for perhaps the first time, his iron composure cracked. She would survive the fall… she had to… He ran to the edge at her call, reaching to grab her hand, but he was able only to grab part of her scimitar, and all he got for his trouble was a vicious slash across the hand he'd extended. He wathed her fall into the blackness, eyes wide, and turned to the woman with the crystal armor who'd dared strike his sister… "Bitch!" he shouted, and a massive pillar of black flame shot out from his sword as he swung it towards her…
"RU!" Kaina shouted as her brother jumped away, and after she'd trapped the mean man with the sword who'd come for the one carrying her, she jumped away as well and ran over to him, rock spikes shooting up to protect her path as she made her way through the grasping hands till she got to her little brother and pulled one off him, throwing it to the pit and closing them in another rock shield, shaking her head. "Ru, we're supposed to stay! They said…" She clung to him a little, pieces of independently flying rock knocking hands back off her little fort, and cried in her mind for her father to come…
Aitre, meanwhile, had his hands full with the skeletal hydra, and jumped back, almost getting bitten in half, right before he saw the drow lady kick his son. Callista beat him to the punch, though, and he had to dodge again because of the distraction - this time less successfully. The creature's bite, however, closed on his left arm, resulting in more damage to the hydra's teeth than anything, and Aitre grinned slightly, holding his other hand back as a fireball grew on his palm.
"Wrong arm!" he yelled, and let the explosive spell go, blasting the creature's skull into fragments. It was then that a few of the rock bits from Kor's devastated prison hit him, knocking him back just slightly, and he saw the elf and his black flame, moving to attack the children and Callista again. "No!" he shouted, and ran between the dark elf and his family, gritting his teeth as the air around him glowed white hot, and brilliant, almost pure white flame crashed into the pitch black of Kor's fire. The two attacks collided and resulted in a massive explosion, but for all Kor's power, it was too rare that he came up against a mage with the ability to challenge him, and in his own enraged state, he hadn't been ready for the sheer fury of the pyromancer's flame.
The explosion was more directed for Kor than Aitre, and the drow was blasted back across the pit, nearly to the other side, but his back slammed into the sheer wall just below the ledge, and the air was driven from his lungs in a rush. Blackness closed in on him, and he fell limply into the pit with his sister, crashing down not far from her, while the blood from his hand stained the bones. All so quickly, both of them had been removed from the fight. If he'd been conscious, the shame would have been terrible…
Meanwhile, the phades came again towards Aitre, drawn by the fury of his magic, and the first one to come got his mithril and cryonite fist in return for its trouble. He knew about these things already, at least… fortunately they now seemed far less numerous. The hand flowed apart, growing those vicious metal claws again, and while he was slightly surprised, he didn't question it - instead, he twisted and used them on the next one, blasting still more flame at the hydra to attract them. Best they come for him and leave his daughter alone… he had to keep his magic outshining hers…
Armis roared in defiance as Calyna's attack struck home, and while he would have liked to celebrate the moment - it was only the midway point. His eyes quickly caught the way everything turned on her, and he leapt immediately to her side, scooping her up and pulling her away from the center of the room to a more defensible position beside Maelstrom, where his cone of lethally cold breath blasted several of the incoming creatures to shards of broken bone and flesh, and his claws and fangs took several more.
At one point, when his jaws were clear of enemies, he twisted to look at her, and a grin briefly spread across his features. I think you made them angry!" He actually laughed at this, a deep, throaty rumble, and completed his twist by smashing another group with his tail. Had this place nothing for a dragon to face?
His violet eyes caught the approach of the golems then, though, and he lowered his stance, preparing for their assault. Oh. There they are.
At the moment she struck, Calyna closed her eyes, as if afraid to see if it had worked or not, if she had failed because she was incapable of the forgiveness required for Redeemer to do it's work. At first, when she felt the sting that shot through her torso and face, she believed that she had indeed failed. Why else would it hurt? It was an odd pain, though. It hurt, but nothing overwhelming.
Opening her eyes because nothing happened after that initial sting, she saw Zodo rising in his true form, both beautiful and terrifying. Taal, finally fully separate was against the wall and he did not look well at all. She couldn't blame him. But where was the mark that should have been there? She knew she'd struck him, had felt the resistance of the weapon from hitting more than air.
Incredulous, she reached a hand to her face, where she could feel a trickle of dampness. It seemed that she did not even notice that now she was the main target for every evil thing in the room. Instead, she was gazing in puzzlement at the slight sheen of blood on her fingers.
That was when Armis snatched her up, carrying her to Maelstrom. All her puzzlement didn't matter when she saw him, obviously at the end of his strength and struggling. She cried out "Maelstrom!" and rushed to his side, wishing she could hold him up. She sounded desperate and she joined him in fighting off those that swarmed them. "I'm here, just hold on a moment longer love…"
The loud roar of the dragons quickly grabs Zodo's attention from his victory over Grentzen towards the sight before him. A twisted smile plays upon Zodo's face as he see's Legend coming straight for him. In an instant, Zodo brings up Forsaken and with a loud thundar and an arc of lightning, Legend crashes into Forsaken.
Ah, to think that this would have been an easy win as a decade before was such folly. For unlike before when Zodo wanted the illusion of victory for his enemies, Zodo now stands unprotected by his unwilling host. The God of Power is not one to go down easily, and wielding the sword Forsaken, Zodo is quite the swordsman. It could very well be said that all the strengths his children possess, Zodo had them first, and has perfected them beyond perfection. Fighting, war… these where the province of Zodo.
Zodo quickly and easily paried each and every one of Tiana's attacks with no effort. With each clash there followed the thundar and arc of power from the explosive interaction of the ultimate divine prescense against the ultimate evil. And with each skillful parry, each swift evade, Zodo's mind relished the thought of almost certain victory. Who could out maneuver a god, after all.
Through Zodo's thin smile he hissed, "Ah Tiana, Taal may soon wish to be dead, feeling not only the deep guilt of all the crimes past, and the coming ablution of this world, but also that his love is soon to be killed when all he could do is lie there and watch. Or are you really foolish enough to think yourswordsmanship can outdo mine?" Zodo's free hand began to crackle with dark energy, the very power which splattered Grentzen, soon to be used against Tiana.
Xyster rushed over to Taal as quick as he could, quickly shoving a potion down the paladin's mouth as soon as he got there. As Taal began to cough, Xyster smirked, "Good, cough, cause you ain't dyin' on us… not after the crap we went through to save yer ass!" Taal smiled weakly at Xyster's comments, but as he saw what happened to Grentzen his smile faded quickly.
Xyster, seeing the change in Taal's demenor, raised an eyebrow, then quickly looked towards Zodo. There, by Zodo's feet, Xyster saw the gutless, lifeless body of his dearest and closest friend… Grentzen.
At first a wave of saddness hit him but that was overtaken by something completely different. An erruption of anger not felt for many ages flowed through the old alchemist as he screamed, "First my wife, then my Rianna, and now my friend…. Zodo, your ass is mine!"
Taal tried to reach out for the old man, to stop him before doing something foolish, but it was too late, the old alchemist was already gone. Quickly Xyster rushed back towards the center, his eyes and his hatred dead set upong Zodo, when he was over come by the undead. Tried as he might to fight them off, swinging his knive and throwing explosive potions this way and that, the undead still managed to pring him down to the grown. As they swarmed over him, Xyster got another good look at the chaos around him. Undead and creatures long forgotten swarming into Forsaken, the mighty and just Hydra Lord, risen back as nothing but a puppet to Zodo fending off his enemies, the children hovering in a shelter of rock trying their best to surive the ongoing carnage and Zodo's evil, and Tiana locked in a dead heated battle against the evil god himself.
Xyster realized then, this could all end badly. All Zodo needs to do is kill Tiana and he'd be able to cast his Ablution. Even with Legend laying there, it would not accept anyone to wield it but it's chosen beholder. If Xyster wanted vengence against the dark god, the best way he could have it is to make sure that Tiana doesn't lose to Zodo. He needed to distract him.
Reaching in his bags past the scraches, clawing, and biting, Xyster pulls forth his necromancer's candle. Grunting, he crawls forth with all his might, hauling on top of him the sheer weight of at least fifty undead, towards the falling flames. There he held out the candle, stretching and trying to catch the fire until one of them lights the candle.
As the candle burned a orange flame, Xyster spoke low into it, "Oh wraith, keeper of the dead… You.. you have shown me your promise by keeping me alive when I ought not to be. You have told me of your hatred for your father, and your desire to see him fall. Please, answer my call now… we can not survive without your help. We must turn the undead against him, distract Zodo from Tiana so that she can get a damnable strike in. Just one, that is all it will take."
The flame changes from orange to black as a powerful wind knocks all the undead off of Xyster. Before Xyster the Spector appeared and lowered his hand. Taking it, Xyster was helped to his feet as Xyster looked strangly upon the angel of death, "You always seem to help me. I have to know, why?" The Spector simply states coldly, "What father would not help his son in need."
As Xyster stood there, dumbfounded, the Spector turned towards the undead and spoke, "Zodo holds no power over you greater than that of Archelus. Turn against him, and you will find freedom and salvation." With those words spoken most of the undead ceased their attacks against those in the room, and instead turned towards Zodo. Slowly, fighting hard at his will, the undead rose to attack the dark god. Even the mighty hydra lord turned and began a relentless attack against the dark god.
The Spector spoke again, loudly, "Zodo, your time has reached it's end. Mogen David has broken the contract and no longer will you use it to enslave mankind."
As Xyster was fighting the undead, before he had summoned up the Spector, Taal had pushed himself forward. The undead seemed unable to attack him, confused over the form they had come to know as their master. Quietly he came behind Tiana and as he spoke of him watching Tiana die helpless to prevent it, Taal simply laughed, "Zodo, you are gravely mistaken. The bond of our love cannot be shattered by your meaningless words and empty threats."
Zodo growled, "Empty threats? I will show you empty threats, of 'benevolent' one." With those words he released his dark enerby upon Tiana, but it was quickly countered by a wave of pure life magic before it could even reach Tiana.
Taal stood their, groaning in pain as he shot back Zodo's death ray with powerful life maginc, "No Zodo, I will not let you take her. Today, I will stop you."
Zodo laughed as he continued to parry Tiana and blast his corrupted power into the weakening Taal's life shield as Taal yells, sweating and crying blood, "YOU WILL NOT HAVE HER!"
Arangoth gasped as the boy jumped from him and growled when he saw Sabre kick the boy. He tried to go after her but then Kor came and tried to interfer. As he prepared to defend the girl he couldn't help but to smirk when the girl did a far better job. But to add to the problem, Kiana escaped him as well. That is when he saw them, phades.
Many of them were attacking Aitre who was busy casting powerful magic trying to attract them to him instead of his childred. But Zodo's will was far more powerful than the phades hunger for magic, or they would have been attacking Zodo himself. Instead, Zodo willed a good quarer of them to go after the children. Taking a deep breath, Arangoth rushed towards the children and leaped belly first ontop of their small earthen fortress. It took his breath as the painful jabs of rock puched hard at his abdomen, but still he managed to whisper, "Be still children, he has called the Phades. I will keep them off of you."
And that he did, channeling all his power to make himself and the children invisible to the phades. As he laid there, in pain, he watched as the undead soon stopped attacking them and started to turn against Zodo, a smile coming to his face, "Worry not children, the battle is almost over."
For a hardned warrior such as Maelstrom, to be so drained already in battle was unheard of. Little did he know it was Zodo's doing, pulling at Maelstrom's xodian blood to sap the warrior-king in a last effort to deprive Calyna of the man she loves.
But despite his fatigue, Maelstrom simply smiles at Calyna, "Worry not dear.. I will be fine." He chuckles, "You did it… you exposed Zodo, he is now weak for the first time in many ages, ready to be killed." Maelstrom continues to fight at the undead, though his swings and dodges become slower and slower. Soon the undead are able to leave their marks on him, drawing blood and bruises upon the fatigued emperor. But he doesn't complain, he keeps fighting on.
Maelstrom dared not look on as Grentzen was murdered, trying to keep himself focused on the fight at hand instead, and at protecting his dear wife. He shouts, though needlessly, at Armis, "If Tiana fails this will…. be all for naugt. We have to… find a way…to help her."
That is when the undead ceased their attacks and turned towards Zodo. Resting on his sword for a moment he looks onward, "What in Mogen David is going on… " he tries to say, but all that comes out before he collapses, drained of energy is "What in Mogen…"
Zodo continued to blast and parry away at Tiana's sword and Taal's life shield, even when the undead began clawing and biting at Zodo. But when the hydra's heads began attacking him, Zodo had to jump back. His attention soon drifted towards Xyster where he saw Spector standing next to him.
With a growl he mutters, "Xeno… the son who betrayed me…." Zodo fought on, attacking the undead and the hydra's many heads. But now the confidence was gone. Now a different fire danced within his eyes, the fire of mortal fear and his coming death….
Callista sighed with relief, but she only had a quick moment to relax. As soon as she was sure Aitre was all right and the vile Drow was stuck in the pit, she dashed over to her children. Hearing Aitre's shout, she whirled around, ready to defend her husband's life if necessary. Instead, it was he who was saving hers. She watched his fiery magic blast back the dark energy of Sabre… no… a male version of the Drow.
A look of surprise crossed her face, but Kaina's voice interrupted her thoughts. "Ru," she murmured, turning back and racing towards the earthen shell she knew the children were hiding under. "What in - " As Arangoth threw himself onto Kaina's protective shell, Callista swore under her breath. That had to have hurt.
Swinging Guillotine back and forth, Callista waded through the hordes of undead and hands until she finally reached the spot where Arangoth and her children had got to. It wasn't long, however, before the phades seemed to lose track of what they were attacking and the undead that had begun to attack stopped what they were doing. To her utmost surprise, they then turned to attack he whom had summoned them.
Callista's lungs and muscles burned from the long battle and she savored the time they'd just gained from this turn of events. "Ru… Kai…" she breathed, placing a hand on the earthen shell. "Are you both okay?" Though no one seemed to be paying too much attention to them at the moment, Callista kept her eyes constantly scanning the room for more danger. "Momma!" came her son's cry, muffled from inside the earth. "Mooommmmmmmaaa!"
Callista didn't need to see her son to know he was injured. Tears welled up in her sapphire eyes, spilling onto her cheeks and smearing the mess that was already there. "Ru, baby, Momma's here. Just hold on a few more minutes! Kai, keep him safe." Even from outside the shell, Callista could hear her son's sobs. Even as a baby he'd never cried so much.
Inside the shell, Ru continued to sob, the pain in his abdomen worse than anything he'd ever felt in his life. Sabre's kick had not only bruised his torso, but had broken a few of his ribs as well. Why couldn't they just go back a short time, back when their trip had been nothing more than a harmless excursion to visit a friend… A friend whom Callista saw was now dead…
Sabre swore as violently and as loudly as she could down inside the pit. Her sword dripped crimson, her own brother's blood, she knew. Growling, she lashed out viciously at the bones, the walls, and anything else stuck in the pit with her. An idea flashed into her head and she finally quieted herself, shifting her vision so that she could watch through Kor's eyes the events taking place up above. A wicked grin finally graced her lips as she watched the dark blast of energy arc towards the blonde sword maiden. "NO!" she barked, seeing the pyromancer not only block her twin's attack, but overpower it.
Returning to her own vision, she sheathed her swords and watched Kor slam into the wall above the pit. Her amethyst orbs remained glued on his form as he slipped into unconsciousness and finally fell into the pit with her. Gritting her teeth, she skittered forward, putting herself below her twin and managed to catch him somewhat. He was too heavy for her to catch outright, but she was able to break his fall at least.
She grunted as his body hit her, but she blocked out the pain and squirmed out from under him. If the kick hadn't already done so, she was sure her ribs were at the very least bruised now, if not cracked. Grunting again, she sheathed Kor's blade and made sure his body was not in any sort of awkward position before looking back up to the rim of the pit. Perhaps she could climb out. Moving to the side, she scanned the wall of the pit for any foot or handholds. It was smooth as a newborn's flesh.
The idea of tearing into a newborn's flesh came to mind as she pulled out her sword, striking the wall again and again and again. When she stopped, a few beads of sweat trickled down into her face and she looked at what she'd done - carved into the rockwall were the choppy letters "S Z". She scoffed. Did she truly have the right to claim that name as her own, after having been taken out with such ease?
What was she thinking?! Of course she did! She was Sabre Zodo - daughter of Zodo, Lord and God of all. "I WILL kill you all!" she roared, sending up a blast of dark energy. It hit the ceiling and shattered a few pieces of rock there, but she managed to roll out of the way of the debris before it joined her and her brother down in the pit.
At last, depression kicked in and Sabre finally succumbed to the fact that she would not be able to get out and fight for the time being. Moving back to her brother's side, she knelt beside him and put a hand on his neck. He was still alive, she could feel his pulse. With a quiet growl, she rest her hand on his shoulder, waiting for Kor to return to the realm of the wakeful. If he woke soon enough, maybe he could help get her back up and into the fray before their Father finished all of the enemies off by himself.
Tiana grinned toothily back at Zodo, not out of bravado, but determination, "In a straight out sword fight Zodo, perhaps I could, but with you nothing is ever straight forward is it?" She blinked as she heard Taal's voice behind her, and as he spoke, something inside her echoed what he was saying, not just for them, but for everyone who had died and those who were still fighting.
Tears started down her face as she saw almost to late the blast of energy that was heading straight for her and there was nothing she oculd do but take it head on and hope. To her surprise it was blocked, and she looked back at Taal as he yelled, and she whispered to him, "I love you," before turning her attention back to Zodo, "You still dont get it, do you? I guess you wouldnt,. all you can see is the hatred, the greediness of humankind. You arent face a group who are looking for glory from defeating Zodo, you arent facing some one who is looking for vengence for those they have lost. You arent even facing an army that is eager to loot forsaken of any and all treasures left hidden with in these walls."
As she spoke her movements grew stronger, almost faster as she tried to get an advantage, "You're facing the 2 things you cant control, nor deflect, the choice of free will and with it freedom, and love. Everyone here is here because of love, wether for their family, their home, or the memory of those they have lost, and you cant force us back."
She raised one of her hands and at that moment a small ball of magma came flying and gravitated towards her hand and she flung it straight into Zodo's face hoping to momentarily blind him as she swung once more at his chest. "There is only one way to end this, to keep you on this plane would mean destruction of our world, of everything, including yourself, and I wont allow that to happen."
Icarias looped around looking for an oportunity to help his daughter when he spotted Xyster trying to free himself from undead and he quickly moved to help his friend. He wasnt far from Xyster when a large wind blew up, knocking away the undead that had piled on him and Spector to rise and seemingly appear from nothing, which he was good at.
Icarias banked and turned his attention back to his daughter, Xyster was alright for now, you couldnt get much better then having the god of the dead by your side when he saw his little girl raise her hand like he had taught her so long ago to try and force call a rock into her hand, if she had still been dragonian she oculd have made her own, so he helped the best he could, spitting a small amount of molten rock out and it zoomed straight and true.
Movement caught his attention and he looked over at Taal behind her and saw him starting to falter, and he knew who he really had to help. He landed behind Taal and wrapped his tail around one of his legs and scooted so he was directly behind him like a leaning post, "I know Xodians can draw on power," he whispered, "use that," he didnt say how, but knew the contact would make it easier.
Armis nodded sharply to Maelstrom and Calyna, but it was all he could do to protect them - and he couldn't leave them on their own, not with Maelstrom's strength fading and much of Calyna's already gone… with the golems and the other creatures closing in no matter how the dragon struck them down, it was simply too much for him to try and assist anyone else…
He let out a frustrated roar, smashing his claws into an iron golem as it came near. The metal was too soft to stand up to his claws, but the machine felt no pain, and Armis tore into it again, then pulled back and blasted it with his breath, freezing and crystallizing the metal, then spinning and smashing it hard enough that the iron itself shattered. One more defeated…
Even so, the dragon was nearing the end of his endurance. This battle was going on too long, and he'd had too much need of his strength and the magic of his breath. If it didn't end very soon, he too would start to succumb to fatigue as the others were.
It was then, though, just as another horde of undead were almost upon them, that the creatures suddenly stopped. At first Armis thought it some trick, and was quick to lash out at the stilled creatures before they reanimated, fearing even when they started in a different direction that they meant to attack Tiana. But they went for a different target… Zodo?
He glanced up and recognized the form of Spector, and his lips pulled back in a vicious grin. So that was it! The keeper of the dead who'd released himself, Icarius, Calyna and Xyster… he meant to take a more active role in this battle after all!
A deep laugh came from Armis' throat, and he reared up, turning back to Calyna and Maelstrom. "Climb on! There is support left to lend her, and I'll not leave you alone!"
Aitre smashed another of the relatively fragile Phades aside, every muscle in his body aching, even the metaphysical ones - he'd pushed his abilities too far beyond their limits this day, and he intended to push them further, but it was the physical fighting he was more unused to. Even so, the metal arm was the one part of him that was incapable of tiring, and the physically vulnerable Phades fell easily enough, thank Mogen. He moved closer to the children and Callista, his heart wracked by his son's sobs, but he gave Arangoth a nod of thanks and blasted aside another patch of undead - only to have them suddenly shift their focus.
He grinned, finally seeing a bright light at the end of the darkness, but something else caught his eye when the undead changed their priorities… "Esta…bon…" Aitre whispered quietly, tears welling in his emerald eyes. "He can't… he's too strong wasn't he…?" Aitre took a step back from the sight, horror closing in on him, and his flames failed for the first time since the battle had started - lucky enough a thing that the undead had changed their alleigance. But the iron golem coming up behind him had done no such thing, and lifted a fist to bring it down on the pyromancer.
Aitre's hands balled into fists, the metal hand snapping slightly as it popped from the pressure, and Aitre turned abruptly, smashing his metal fist into and through the golem's chest with a roar of anguish and rage.
"ZODO!" he shouted, tears streaming down his face, and he pulled the golem to the ground, pressing down into it as he pulled a trick he'd never managed before. Fire was one thing for him, but to the dark god, magical flames were less than useless. But he was vulnerable enough to other, more physical forms of attack, at least in this form, and while he couldn't be killed by them… Aitre could certainly give Tiana the shot she needed.
Forsaken was more than the rock Kaina was controlling. It had a powerful foundation of cryonite and even tougher metals running all through it to support the massive structure… metals that heeded Aitre's anguished call. The floor under Zodo suddenly turned liquid - even from across the room, Aitre, in his pain, had managed to extend his influence so far. Strands of liquid metal shot up to him, sharpening to punch through his armor, but not to kill… the spikes would drive into him from every angle, the contact spreading the control into the metal of his armor and securing it, putting roots into the tough plating as though it was soft cheese, extending Aitre's control to that metal as well… still more filaments would strike for his sword, and Aitre would simply melt that away, driving it to fold around his arm and lock the joints of the armor… hold him in place for Tiana's killing blow.
"No more of my friends die! It's your turn! Yours, you BASTARD!"
Calyna did not care about Grentzen, Xyster, Arangoth…any of them, really. Tiana and Zodo could be having a battle of noddle wands for all she cared. Her part was done. She had separated Taal and Zodo, now the rest could do their parts.
It was Maelstrom she cared about now. He looked so tired, not right at all. What was going on? He should not be so exhausted yet. For that matter, neither should she. But she did feel tired, so utterly drained that all she wanted to do was curl up with Maelstrom and sleep as if they were back in his -no, their- bed at the palace. She wanted to be able to forget about Forsaken, forget the darkness and small spaces, leave behind Sark and all the confusion and pain confrontation with him stirred within her.
So her attention on who was doing what within the throne room was not as keen as it normally would have been. It was only in her peripheral vision that she took in Xyster assisting Taal before the old alchemist broke into a fury. Part of her head understood why Xyster would attack the Dark God when he knew he would not be able to defeat him, but at hte same time she wondered why he bothered. She was so tired. Why weren't they? This really wasn't fair.
Spector showing up at the scene of the battle was far more puzzling, but she was too far away for even her hearing to catch the words between Xyster and Spector, not when all the other noise was present. However, by the dumbfounded look on Xyster's face, it was something she would have to inquire about later. That little note was filed away in her tired mind, to hopefully be recalled later. She tried to protect Maelstrom as he faltered more, but she was not far behind him in her decline. Unfortunately, she was growing slower too, barely avoiding the onslaught and had more than a couple scratches to prove the existence of several close calls.
Just has she was becoming resigned to the belief that this would be the end, because even Armis would not be able to fend off the undead and the hydra for long, it all simply..stopped. There was nothing more to defend against, no disgusting moving flesh and rot of the undead. No more. She sank down next to Maelstrom with only a little more dignity and modicrum of choice about doing so.
Weary, she turned a deadened gaze towards Zodo and Tiana. "I don't know..but everything is attacking Zodo…Come on Tiana…"
Her head tilted up at Armis, understanding what he wanted. Looking down at Maelstrom, she gave an exhausted shake of the head in resignation. "I can't, Armis..I can't pick him up, I can't leave him…My time is over, I've done what is needed. The others can have the glory, the finishing blows. You go, help them. We're not under attack anyway…"
Once he was certain all of the phades were gone and the undead no longer a thread did Arangoth stand. Parts of his armor on his admomen were broken and pieces of sharp rock were still impelled, dripping with fresh blood. But if he felt the pain, which surely Arangoth did, he did not show it. Arangoth had learned long, long ago how to hide his pain, having been tortured countless times. It is what made him a fierce warrior, when others would be anguished by severe paid he'd fight on as if he felt no pain.
Kneeling next to the children, the dark knight smiles, "Look children, the nightmare, it is soon to be over. Zodo has lost his hold upon this world. Soon the light will shine and peace will reign." His eyes drift over to the boy and his swollen chest. Sighing he smiled at him, "You are so brave young one. But even bravery cannot undo pain." Turning, he calls out to Xyster, "Xyster, this boy needs your help."
Xyster stood there for a moment in shock and confusion. What did the Spector mean, Xyster knew his father.. and it certainly wasn't death himself. Could it be because Spector had made him a physical body?
But his musings were ended when he heard Arangoth. Quickly the old alchemist rushes over and kneels down before the boy. Shaking his head Xyster jests, "I bet the whopin' you gave to who did this is far worse. This is only a broken rib.. or four."
Xyster takes out a milky white potion and holds the boy's head back, administering it himself, "Yeah, I know the potion takes bad. Ran out of bone healin' chocolate." As soon as he's done Xyster hands the boy a chocolate bar, "But here's some guarenteed to take that taste away. So eat on this, but don't move around. No more kickin' Zodo's ass for you today."
Xyster then turns to Callista, "Now, that potion ain't gonna heal him instantly. It will take a while, but it starts the process, and loosely attaches his bones in place for him so the healin will be faster. It will also keep down infection and fever. But no runnin, bouncin, flyin, or other fun stuff for at least two weeks."
Xyster then turns to Arangoth, "What in Xodod did you do, try to make armor out of dirt?" Arangoth shakes his head, "Don't worry about me, I'm fine." Xyster nods, "Uh huh… " He then turns to Callista, "Hold his ass down will ya. He needs treatment, and I just don't feel like arguin' with him."
Maelstrom sighs, seeing how week Calyna has become herself. He then looks up at Arangoth, "It's no good. I don't think either of us could climb on your back, nor would we be able to stay on in a heated fray against Zodo himself." He then looks towards Xyster and the others, "But over there, we should be able to rest a bit, away from immediate danger and in the company of others." He takes Calyna's hand, "Come on dear, we can do it, together."
The attack by the undead and the hydra caused Zodo to have to end his magic blasting towards Tiana, and thus at Taal's shield. With the attack ended, Taal fell backwards into Icarius, fully exhausted. Taking a sigh of relief, Taal whispers,"Thanks friend…" He then allows himself to take some of Icarius's strength, but instead of keeping it for himself, he stretches his hand out to Tiana and gives it to her, "It is almost over, Tiana. Just one good strike, that is all it takes…"
Things were becoming increasingly difficult for the dark god now. With the attacks of the undead and the hydra coming in from all angles, he had to focus himself over a larger area, and unfortunately for him, that was Zodo's one weakness. To compensate, the dark god had to end his magic blast towards Tiana.
Zodo ignored the undead. Everytime they touched him they burst into flames anyways, and their attacks would do nothing to him. The hydra's attacks were equally ineffective physically, however they were able to move and push Zodo's physical body, which would leave him open for Tiana's sword.. something Zodo could not allow. Zodo growled as with one hand he blasted away the hydra heads with his powerful magic, and the other hand continued to parry Tiana's sword strikes. He had come to close to achieving his goal to loose now. Hissing, the dark god speaks, "Is this the best you can do, oh sword bearer? Why don't you give up. Give up and run away and perhaps I may spare you… Perhaps I may take you as my bride."
The magma attack did nothing to faulter Zodo's attack. While it momentarily covered his eyes, only to melt away within moments, a god did not require physical eyes to see, especially one like Zodo. His vision could pierce the thickest metal. It was only a simple irritation.
However as soon as that had faded the very metal in the room began to attack Zodo, attempting wrap itself around him. Turning his attention to Aitre, Zodo laughed darkly, "Aitre, really now. Do you think you can out power the god of power? Yes, you have an admirable control over metal, but it was I who created metal. Behold, as I show you how it is done.. perhaps to once again encase your beloved in metal."
With but a simple thought, all of the metal fled from Zodo, and came rushing back towards Aitre, aimed especially for Callista. The very earth that Callista stood upon began to give in , ready to wrap around Callista's feet. The metal and earth answered Zodo's call without hesitation or exertion on Zodo's part. Zodo, the dark god of power was indeed a master of this art. His sheer power and control over all the elements would eclipse Aitre a hundred times over.
But with this simple show of power, with his simple arrogance and need to prove himself, Zodo forgot about one thing. Tiana. For while Zodo had turned onto Aitre and demonstrated to the pyromancer that he was better than him, Tiana's sword had a free, unguarded opening. Perhaps if Zodo had realized that it was Aitre's intention all along to buy Tiana some time, to give her an opening, he'd left the attack along, shrugged it off like he did Tiana's magma blast. But Zodo could not, for he was trully arogant and prideful above all things.
As Zodo stood there, laughing at Aitre, Legend pierced his flesh. Zodo's eyes widened as sudden fear and doom creeped over him. He turned quickly, ready to incinerate Tiana, but it was too late, the attack was done. Magic would not answer him. As Legend stayed within Zodo's flesh, it freed itself from Tiana, refusing her. A chorus seemed to break out from the world and the air became very still for but a moment and Zodo, in all is might and glory, collapsed down to his knees.
For that moment his eyes shone for the first time since his creation with the tears of pleading and remorse. But it was too late for him. The holy energy of Mogen David's Word rushed in through the sword quickly. Zodo's eyes disappeared within an instant, and the halo exploded, sending a powerful burst of wind throughout the room. The fires consumed his wings, and his skin began to shrivel up as Zodo eventually imploded upon himself, letting out a powerful blast of magic, hatred, greed, evil, pride, agony, dispair, and power throughout the room and beyond.
Taal held on hard to Tiana as the god of greed collapsed before them. As the wind hit, he whispered joyfully, "It is done, the age of Zodo has ended! Mogen David is victorious!" A calm voice whispered within Tiana's head, "Victory is yours, the time for healing will begin. Legend is no longer needed within this world. You may keep the form it gave you, or you may take up your old self, the choice, as with all choices, is yours."
Maelstrom stopped short and turned towards Zodo, seeing him fall. He wraps his arms onto Calyna, his eyes swelling with tears, "Finally.. the suffering.. the hatred.. the fear. It has come to pass!" He takes Calyna's head,gently within his hands, feeling his strength returning to him quickly and gazes into her eyes for but a second before kissing her deeply and passionatly as the wind hits.
A calm voice echoes through all the minds of the heroes, except Kor and Sabre, "May the days of your lives from here on out be filled with joy and love, and know that I am with you for all eternity."
The powerful blast of magic soon hit all in the room, but it's effects were unfelt. Instead as the power escaped and wrecked destruction upon the world, the room fell forgotten to time itself…. The powerful blast of magic was unfelt and unnoticed by all within the throne room and within Forsaken itself. As the powerful wave of chaotic magic rushed out of the room, it took all the elements with it, including time. The powerful seal prevented these elements from returning into Forsaken, preventing time itself.
Thus unknowingly, everyone stood as they were for four hundred and fifty years, unchanged and unaffected by time. During that time the chaotic forces let out in Zodo's death throws melded in with the fragile magic environment. The results were catastrophic and a great magical apocalypse took place. Whole landmasses were ripped apart and flung together with different landmasses. Devestation and death rained upon the world for neary 400 years.
Thanks to the warning given by Mogen David's messanger, Melanie, many people took to the underground and survived. But still many more people refused to listen to the messanger or were un able to escape underground, and for that they perished above ground.
Around the year 500, feeling that the magical fallout may be over, people took to the surface. The world they saw was not the world they remembered. However life was present again. Trees grew, animals lived, and things seemed stable enough.
So the brave few went forth and discovered areas of land where the chaotic magic fields were weakest. There they built cities and rediscovered long, long forgotten technologies o replace the magic that now was too dangerous to use. With these technologies, people were able to build defenses against the rampant magic storms and the devestating rogue magic and able to survive and grow once more.
But life will never be the same. Instead of facing extention from Zodo however, at least now they can just 'survive'. Eventually the magical barrier that had sealed Forsaken began to falter. But even then all the elements didn't rush in. Slowly they crept in, earth, fire, water, air, life, death, time, and space. In here, of all places, they seemed to be free from the chaotic magic, which had escaped from here long ago.
Thus curiously the only safe magical place was the home of the dark god himself. But no one ever knew it, for no one dared to approach Forsaken, not even the wild men who had been so deranged by chaotic magic and were rendered insane, would go near that place.