Clearing the Eir

BrikWars fiction in long-prose form. Trigger warning: Walls of text

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Clearing the Eir

Postby Quantumsurfer » Tue Oct 06, 2015 6:10 am

I've begun writing what I call Shotgun Stories.  They're little bits of narrative debris I have floating about in my head, stuff that (realistically) I'll probably never get round to fully fleshing out and turning into a serious story, short or long.  So far it's been a fun way to let off a little creative steam without nailing myself to a commitment.  Hopefully, if I do it enough, I might start to develop something useful and slowly grow better with writing.  Anyway, I started one based in BrikWars, so I thought I'd post it here whenever I add to it.

The Stub

Spoiler: show
The Ketir-Iah arrive in the Devoid Sector and begin invading worlds, starting with Eir, which is defended by a small but stubborn garrison of the Gunnar-Grim.


Clearing the Eir

The Grim hunkered down behind the hollowed out ruin of the Snub Tank and counted his blessings. There weren't any major holes in him and he still had with him his trusty Bloodbore, though the back half of the drill hammer was melted and useless. He rapped on his faithful helm with calloused knuckles for luck and in gratitude for its service so far. It had saved him from no less than three direct Force Blasts to the head and one nasty bit of shelling on the way in. He was, in fact, the only remaining member of his squad and he had the ancient helm to thank for it fully. Just one more rush, fifteen feet or so, and he could plant the charges that would make those smug sorcerer sons of bitches wish they had never set foot on Lyfja. The Grim breathed out slowly, preparing himself for the surge. Then, gripping his Bloodbore tight, he bulled out of cover, a warcry on his lips. No sound escaped the confines of his beard, however. In a brutal display of violence, his ancient helm crumpled about his head as though squeezed closed by the hand of some giant. His thick skull buckled beneath the pressure, gore spurting through the rapidly closing rents and openings in the old armor. The melted hammer fell to the ground with a dull clank and the dwarf's headless body tumbled after. The Ketir-Iah Arcanus smiled a wicked smile, her jackal snout splitting to show two rows of reddened, razor sharp teeth, and she unclenched her outstretched fist, delighting in the delicious pain that shot up her arm as the bones in her fingers shattered and the magic left her.


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Re: Clearing the Eir

Postby Quantumsurfer » Tue Oct 06, 2015 6:13 am

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The Arcanus glided over the ground with a fluid grace, the effort of floating several feet above creating the marvelous sensation of being held aloft by razor sharp wire.  She could feel the biting pain slicing into her arms and abdomen and delighted in even this simple show of power.  She slowed as she approached the Snub Tank and set down gently next to the fallen corpse of the last external Gunnar-Grim defender.  She made a sharp gesture, claw outstretched, and the explosive charge he had been wielding leapt from the ground and audibly smacked into her open palm.  Another shock screamed up her arm.  As she contemplated the unimpressive little package, two frontline Acolytes appeared at the edge of a nearby dust cloud and approached her in haste.

"Arcanus Basma," the shorter one addressed her, "the Heru Cruisers cannot pierce the Dwarven fortification.  Combining fire gets us through the outer force field but there isn't enough focused power left to breach the wall."

"I see," the sorceress replied calmly, "and what of the main cannon on the mobile base?"

"The focusing matrix has been disabled, Arcanus.  Some sort of feedback from the opening salvo.  The engineers report no less than sixteen hours until it's up and running again.  Even then..."  The Acolyte gave a shrug and glanced over at the slow moving behemoth that served as current Ketir HQ on Eir.  Basma nodded as she turned to eye the death wall herself.  Funny, it didn't look like much, she thought.

"Arcanus!" the tall one exclaimed in surprise and dismay as he half reached for her.  "Your hand!"

Basma stared at him for a second and then glanced down at her ruined fingers, still clutching painfully at the Dwarven charge.  She looked back up and deep into his eyes, stepping forward into him.  The younger jackal stood his ground only barely.  Calmly, she reached up with her good hand and laid it alongside his jaw, stroking the fur there gently.  Then, in one swift, violent motion, she wrapped her claw around his lower muzzle and yanked sharply downward.  The jaw snapped with an ugly sound nearly drowned out by the newest volley of Heru shots.  She didn't even notice the young Ketir's teeth tearing into her few good remaining fingers.  He yelped and crumpled into a heap at her feet.  "That will teach you to wag your fool tongue in front of your betters."  Turning to the shorter one, who was presently doing his damnedest to pretend like nothing untoward had just occurred, the sorceress pushed the explosive charge into his hands.  His eyes widened ever so slightly.  "Now, take this and gather ten Acolytes with previous channeling experience.  We're going to crack this nut the old fashioned way."  He nodded quickly and sprinted away without a backward glance.

Arcanus Basma grinned down at the subordinate lying prostrate beneath her.  "I need my full strength for this.  If you survive, I hope you will have learned your lesson well."  The whimpering Acolyte's eyes grew round with terror as the Arcanus laid her ruined hand on his.  "Hold this for me," she whispered as the magikal connection took hold.  With a sickening staccato of snapping bones, her pain and wounds transferred to his body.  In a moment, her ruined hand was as good as new and the lacerations around her arms and stomach vanished.  In that same moment, identical wounds violently ravaged the young Ketir and he choked out a garbled scream before lapsing into unconsciousness.  She knew she'd have to take the wounds back within the hour or the spell's backlash would visit many times the damage back to her.  But for now, she felt energized and refreshed.

The sorceress grinned freely, stood and began picking her way across the battlefield toward her awaiting ritualists.


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Re: Clearing the Eir

Postby Quantumsurfer » Mon Oct 26, 2015 4:16 am

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She arrived at the frontline with a sweeping, dramatic entrance and the Ketir gathered there knelt hurriedly in deference.  It was a sign of deep disrespect to avert one's gaze whilst doing so.  The Ketir-Iah believe that one should always be taking the measure of any with whom they share space (enemy or ally), in order to determine their proper place in any given situation.  To that end, all eyes were on Basma as she regally lifted one hand and looked over the heads of her underlings toward the Dwarven fortification.  The guns on the assembled Heru immediately fell silent and the stench of burning ozone began to fade from the air.

She extended her opposite hand out, directly before her, palm facing the wall as though she were gently caressing it up close.  The very air warped like ripples on a pond mere inches from the wall and the great construction yielded up its secret to the Arcanus.  Great glowing runes bled slowly into vision, carved into the wall itself, as the weaker magik that hid them was wiped gently away by the sorceress' will.

Basma felt a sharp tug on her arm and a wave of nausea swept through her.  At first, she thought to ignore it, attributing the feelings to even the gentlest use of her cursed blood magiks.  But when her thumb blackened and the searing sensation of her flesh burning traced a jagged line of pain through her hand, she frowned deeply and reconsidered.  The Curse always took a form of punishment, most often pain and physical damage, that suited the way the magik was being utilized.  Since she had effectively dusted away the amateurish concealment magik on the wall, the burned hand made sense.  The pulling and nausea sensations did not.

She studied her outstretched hand more closely and slowly began to perceive the weave of an enemy spell ensnaring it.  "Oh, very clever," she mumbled quietly to herself.  She felt no further resistance as she moved her arm around but as she focused on the spell and her eyes adjusted, she could see it gathering momentum and power.  It pulsed and spiraled around her hand and down her arm toward the elbow, where it seemed to burrow tendrils of energy directly into her arm.  It was difficult to ascertain exactly what the enemy magik was doing to her but she had a pretty good idea.  Besides, she didn't want to waste any more energy identifying its effects, especially if the enemy spell was, in fact, siphoning her magikal energy as she thought.  

If she was correct, the spell was tied to the Protection Rune on the wall.  As it drained her of the ability to pierce the wall through offensive magiks, it recycled that energy to serve as further ablative layers of magikal armor.  Now that she could perceive the energy clearly, she could see hundreds of the glowing tendrils snaking outward from the Runes and burying themselves in the weapons of her attack force.  Made sense.  Much of the Ketir armament currently used a borrowed Blue Transparent energy source called Zaubered Blue.  It was friendly to magik and held deep reserves of energy within its energy matrices.  With all the weapons currently at her disposal laced with magikal energies, it was no wonder the impressive complement couldn't pierce the vampiric wall.

Her hubris had trapped her.  Fortunately, she could afford such arrogance.

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