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kaz last won the day on March 16 2015

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  1. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    i still have readers? seriously?...sweet! i realize what an epic fail it’s been for me not to have updated in...however long it’s been. but, well...you know. busy. un-creative. et cetera. however, it occurs to me that i do happen to have a chapter or two lying around. (shame on me for not posting them.) in any case, here’s one now. :oops: thanks for sticking around, friends! you’re the best! Chapter 2 - The Faithful Servant When we exited the throne room, the other daevas, all of whom were now present, looked up in utter shock. Tawrich was standing to one side with Zarich and Aesma. Aravis was seated on a low bench with his mother in his arms. There was a charred, ruined mess on the floor beside Tawrich, which might have vaguely resembled a demon form if it wasn’t so oddly contorted; though there did seem to be some shallow breathing coming from it. No one spoke. Finally I said, “What’s wrong with you all?” “Agas!” shrieked Indra, and she flew at me like lightning, tears in her eyes. She threw her arms around me and kissed me very hard. When she finally released me, I said, “What, no ‘I told you so’?” She looked up at me, and tears began to slide down her cheeks. I couldn’t begin to fathom what she was thinking at that moment, and she did not seem to be able to tell me. “I—-I thought—-” she began weakly, but did not finish. “You’re supposed to be dead!” Aesma said loudly and incredulously. “So sorry to disappoint you, old friend,” I replied. He grinned. “Well, next time someone tells me you’re dead, you had better damn well be so.” I nodded, and then looked over at Aravis. He was still seated on the bench, and there was a strange expression on his face. He looked up at me, and I wondered, “No ‘I told you so’ from you, either?” He shook his head vigorously and looked away again. Something seemed wrong, but I could not tell what it was. I was further not permitted to find out just then, because the Saurva-shaped figure on the floor convulsed audibly. We all turned in its direction for a moment, then looked at one another. Aesma, naturally, was first to speak. “Do we even bother killing him? It looks as though he’s done a fair job of it for us.” Hajetus caught my eye, and I nodded. “Actually, Aesma, we are not through with him yet. Once Hajetus is done with him, I believe a council is in order.” Aesma, Zarich, and Indra all stared at me with the same astonished expression as Hajetus went to examine Saurva. For some time no one spoke. “But—-but he—-How—-” Aesma finally sputtered. “You want him to—-to live?” agreed Zarich. “What’s wrong with you?” I laughed. “All in good time, my friend.” Hajetus did what he could to repair the damage Aravis had done to Saurva, and the self-proclaimed “faithful servant” was gifted a slave bracelet (which we all tried to keep on hand) and placed in the castle dungeon by Aesma and Tawrich. In the meantime, Nanghaithya used a simple rain spell to quench most of the fires in the throne room, and we gathered there for a hurried council. I asked Aravis to wait outside, and to my surprise he did so willingly. Once assembled, I repeated my encounter with Saurva to the other daevas. Each expressed the appropriate amount of outrage, and of the four who had not yet heard the tale, three of them had to be restrained from going to the dungeon and killing Saurva outright. Only Tawrich recognized the situation for what it truly was. “Let us not be hasty,” he told the others. “While I understand the desire for vengeance, there is something far more important that must be done. We know now for certain that Ahriman still lives, and intends to destroy at the very least Agas, but more likely all of us. Saurva knows where he is, and perhaps far more than he spoke. We must convince him to give us this information.” “He would never,” Zarich interjected hotly. “After all this? I would be surprised if he ever spoke another word again.” “His mouth is what gets him into trouble, more often than not,” I answered. “There is a way to make him talk.” Aesma snorted. “Oh, I can make him talk, concern yourselves not about that.” “Force is not the answer,” said Hajetus, shaking his head. “If you recall, he still bears the scars of Ahriman’s brutal attack fifteen years ago, and he has only mentioned him at this point because his listener was dying.” I nodded. “Indeed. But there is another way.” Indra, who was in the throne and the only one seated, rose slowly with a smolder in her eye and a dangerous tone in her voice. “No.” “You are the only one to whom he will speak,” I told her. “No.” “Agas is right, Indra,” Aesma put in. “Filthy traitor though he may be—-” “Under no circumstances.” She folded her arms, and her eyes turned red. Zarich joined the argument with, “Be reasonable, Indra—-” but was silenced by the glare she gave him. “I’m sorry,” she said quietly and rather sarcastically, “but it sounds to me as though you all actually think that I would go and speak rationally to the demon who until this moment was planning to kill my son.” I sighed, realizing now what it was going to take to convince her. I approached her and took her hands in mine. “He is my son as well. And the only thing that prevented me from killing Saurva outright when he told me was the fact that I was bleeding to death. But a silent Saurva in a castle dungeon does not guarantee Aravis’s safety. I understand your misgiving, but as of now, Saurva is the only one who knows where Ahriman is, and you are the only one who can make him talk.” She looked at me hard for a long time. Finally she relented with a long sigh. “Very well. But know this: there may come a point where I am unable to control my temper.” “Do call us before that happens,” sneered Aesma from behind me. “I should very much like to see what becomes of him then.”
  2. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    once again, life gets in the way. if anyone cares (hehehe), here is a new chapter. enjoy at your leisure. The Agas Saga - Part III Chapter 1 - The Powers of a Sun Priest “Agas.” I heard a voice calling someone’s name, though from very far away. All was darkness around me. I felt nothing. I remembered nothing. I knew nothing. “Agas,” the voice said again, and it was growing nearer. Memories slowly found their way back to me...Of course...Agas was my name... “Agas?” The owner of the voice was beside me now, though I could not see him. It was familiar, too, but I could not place it right away. Consciousness crept over me like a slow-acting poison, and finally I recalled exactly what had happened. And it didn’t seem remotely possible. I opened my eyes. I was in the throne room of the palace of Sedona, lying on my back on the floor. There was a dull throbbing pain in my chest, and my eyes could not find focus in anything at first. I shook my head, which also throbbed when I did so. The ceiling slowly stopped revolving and became clearer. I glanced to my right, and saw a familiar young man kneeling beside me, his brow furrowed, a rather tense expression on his face. “Hajetus,” I croaked. I was surprised at the sound of my own voice; it sounded as though I hadn’t used it for years. He released a breath that he seemed to have been holding for quite some time. “The outcome I was hoping for,” he said, mostly to himself. Then he asked me, “How do you feel?” “Are you joking?” I replied. He chuckled, and I asked, “Where is—” “Saurva is—being detained,” he said at once. “Ah. Well, that is good news. But I meant Aravis.” “Oh. He’s outside...” “He’s all right?” Hajetus looked at me curiously. “Of course. He is the one who came to get me, actually. Did something—” “Later,” I interjected. I tried to sit up, but it gave me a great deal of discomfort, and Hajetus pushed me back down. “Do not try to get up yet,” he said. “You are still healing.” “Healing...” The word stirred something of a question, something that did not make sense. “Wait a minute. I’m not dead.” “You’ve only just discovered that?” he said, raising his eyebrows. “That mouth of yours is going to get you into trouble one day, boy,” I returned, pushing myself painfully up on one elbow. He grinned. “You were dead. Not anymore. Though, if I had come any later...” I shook my head slowly. “How?” “I am still possessed of the powers of a sun priest, fortunately,” he explained. “And one of those powers is to raise the dead?” I said cynically. “As a matter of fact...Of course, it must be done shortly after the subject dies. With demons or other immortal beings, the spell must be performed within the hour. For regular humans, it is only minutes. And...it does not always work. If the wounds are serious enough, they may prevent the spell from having any effect.” I looked down, and saw that there was no wound of which to speak: no evidence of what Saurva had done. I looked back at Hajetus. “It took my most powerful healing spell,” he told me. “Three times, actually.” “And your ‘raise the dead’ spell?” “Five,” he said. “I—I probably would have given up after that.” He fell silent. Finally I said, “Well, Hajetus, I guess I am glad we decided not to kill you after all.” “You’re welcome,” he laughed. “But you really should be lying down.” “What’s happening out there?” I asked, nodding toward the doors and dismissing his advice. He sighed. “I don’t know, actually. Aravis came and told me Saurva had killed you. I came immediately, and Tawrich sent me right in here. I did not have a chance to speak to anyone else. Though I must say...Saurva...was not looking well...” I rolled my eyes. “I need answers, Hajetus, not more questions. I need to speak to someone who knows what’s going on. Preferably someone rational.” “I shall see who I can find,” he said knowingly. “Do not try to get up again.” He went to the door and stepped outside, shutting it behind him. I lifted myself to a sitting position, my back to the door. I was extremely sore, but the terrific pain seemed to be slowly ebbing away. I sat still and waited until I heard the door open and then close again. “You had me worried, Hajetus,” said Nanghaithya’s voice as two sets of footsteps approached me. I turned my head slightly and said, “Hajetus, I asked for someone rational.” “And I asked you not to get up,” he retorted. “Same old Agas,” said Nanghaithya with a sigh. “I suppose he must have thought you said, ‘highly intelligent’ or ‘remarkably talented’.” I smirked. “And yet he still brought you. Are the others here as well?” “Aesma and Zarich are not,” he told me. “I assume they have not yet been informed. Indra says you told her Saurva—” “Snuck up on me,” I finished. “Yes. No need to lecture me. She warned me, I didn’t listen. I deserved it. Do you know what happened after I—well...died?” “Indra and Aravis found you, of course,” he began, “though how they knew to come, I have not learned. Apparently Aravis used his Torment on Saurva, and then stopped Indra unleashing her Fury, immediately before she sent him off to get Hajetus. He came to me next, and when we returned, Hajetus was here tending to you, and Saurva was in a heap on the floor a few yards away. Aravis and I removed him to the corridor, incidentally. Tawrich arrived shortly after that. They are all still out there, waiting for news of your condition.” “Which was ‘dead’ when you came in here, correct?” He nodded, and I said, “Before anyone receives any ‘news’, there are far more important things we need to discuss.” I repeated to Nanghaithya and Hajetus everything that Saurva had told me. When I was finished, Hajetus was shaking his head in disbelief, and Nanghaithya had his fists clenched tightly, looking more furious than I had, in the four thousand years I had known him, ever seen him. “All this over a prophecy,” he muttered, his voice quivering slightly. “I suppose it was Zirna to whom he was referring.” “He didn’t speak her name expressly, but I have to assume so. He did say ‘the girl’ would have to go. It wouldn’t make sense for him not to do it, based on the plans he made clear to me.” “After all that he’s done...all that has happened...I cannot believe anyone would still wish to follow Ahriman,” Hajetus said, still shaking his head. “Saurva does not like to think for himself,” I said. “He would prefer someone more powerful to tell him what to do, and then be rewarded for his obedience.” Nanghaithya made for the door. I asked him where he was going, and he replied, without looking back and as though it were all too obvious, “I am going to kill Saurva.” Hajetus raced over to stop Nanghaithya leaving, and I said, “While that would be the preferred course of action, it would not be the wisest right now. Saurva says Ahriman is still out there somewhere. We all know how dangerous Ahriman can be. We have to stop him. And in order to do that—” “We need Saurva to tell us where he is,” Hajetus finished. Nanghaithya sighed. “You are right, of course. I lost my head. Saurva is not the problem, Ahriman is. We shall have to have a council.” I stood up very slowly, and grimaced slightly. Hajetus was giving me one of those, “What did I just say to you?” looks. “Yes, doctor, I know: I shouldn’t be standing,” I said dismissively. “But by all rights, I shouldn’t be living either, so let’s call this a step on the road to recovery.” He rolled his eyes again, and Nanghaithya, now composed once more, said, “I suppose we should go and break the bad news to the others.” “About Ahriman?” asked Hajetus. “No,” Nanghaithya said solemnly. “That Agas actually survived.”
  3. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    i :loving: theories! (it's like watching 'lost' all over again XD XD) sorry to leave you all hanging; i haven’t had a lot of time to myself lately. but i did promise that the show would go on, so please enjoy this next piece while you wait for it. Isilme was nervous. She went to the window, opened it, scanned the landscape, closed it again, and went back to the bed. She did this twice more without realizing it. She was certain she would be caught, and if her parents would be livid if they knew. Mother had warned her never to see him again, and Father had of course agreed, as he nearly always did. But how could she not? He was the most wonderful thing that had ever happened to her. He respected her. He listened to her. He cared what she thought. He loved her, and didn’t care that she was human. And with him, she felt safe. Why could they not understand? She went to the window again, and froze. There was a small knock at her bedroom door. On the other side of the door, Rhen hesitated. She and Lars had discussed at length that this was the proper thing to do, but she still was not sure she was ready. How was Isilme going to take it? Badly, she was certain. But it was necessary; for if not now, when? She knocked. There was silence within. “Isilme?” she said. “I’d like to speak with you.” Isilme’s heart was pounding. What if he came? What if she let her mother in, and he appeared at the window? How would she explain it? There was another knock, and Isilme knew she could not keep her waiting any longer. She flew back to the bed and murmured, “Come in.” Rhen entered and found her daughter sitting hunch-shouldered on the bed, her back to the door. She sighed, but remained resolved. “May I sit down?” she wondered. Isilme nodded silently and slid down to allow her mother room to take a seat beside her, trying not to look to the window. They had had ages to talk; why did they have to talk now?... Rhen looked at her daughter, who had hung her head to hide her face with her hair, for a long while. It was all for the best; why couldn’t Isilme understand? Perhaps, Rhen thought, because we have not given her enough information to understand. At least, that was her hope. “Isilme, listen. I hate what’s happening between us. I know you are still angry with us—-with me. I think it is time for you to know the truth.” The truth? ...It did not surprise Isilme that she didn’t know what her mother called “the truth”, but she never imagined she would learn it, at least not from her. She glanced up at the window, and turned slightly to her mother, thinking that the only way she was going to hear the entire tale was by feigning complete ignorance. “What do you mean?” she asked quietly as she turned away again. “I have no doubt that at some point you have heard of the prophecy,” Rhen began. Isilme shrugged. Rhen rolled her eyes, knowing the girl was being difficult on purpose, but continued anyway. “Before you were born, a prophecy was made. It stated that you, my daughter, would become a powerful sword singer—-which you have—-and would one day lead humankind in a...a revolution, I suppose, against the daevas.” Isilme’s heart raced. This much, and more, she already knew. Was it possible that Mother really didn’t care that Aravis was a demon, and that she was about to learn the prophecy in its entirety? She turned again to her mother. “How am I supposed to do that?” Rhen paused, then finally shrugged. She had never considered “how”, because “what” had been dangerous to the point of ludicrousness. “Prophecies...don’t exactly work that way. But there is more to it than that. It went on to say that you would succeed, and that the daevas would be overthrown, and humans would once again ‘take back’ the world.” “The world never...‘belonged’ to humans.” Aravis had said that to her, and she wholeheartedly agreed. “No. It does not belong to anyone. But that is not the point. The prophecy also spoke of the demon Ahriman, of whom you have heard many tales.” Isilme nodded. She could not dispute this. Rhen nodded as well. “If you were to unseat the daevas, and humans were to become dominant once more, Ahriman would have no trouble destroying the world and everything in it.” Isilme knew all of this, but she was determined to make her mother keep talking. “But why? It sounds as though you think humans could not defeat Ahriman.” Rhen let out a hollow laugh; leave it to her daughter to come right to the point. “Humans cannot defeat him. I couldn’t. My parents couldn’t. I trust and believe in you, my daughter, but humankind never has been, and never will be, prepared for the wanton malice and destruction of which Ahriman is capable.” It was time to draw out the truth. “So...the daevas, then, are the only ones who can...what, keep Ahriman from destroying the world?” “Much as I hate to admit it, I do believe that to be the case.” We’re nearly there... “So, knowing this, why would I want to lead a revolution against the daevas?” Rhen chuckled slightly. “I am fairly certain the daevas don’t know that you know this information. And...there is one final thing you should know. The prophecy said that both the revolution and Ahriman could be stopped...by the child of a daeva.” So this was the missing piece of the puzzle. Isilme could not see Aravis because her mother assumed he would...what? Kill her? What did she think this “child of a daeva” was going to do? “So...what exactly does any of this have to do with Aravis?” Rhen couldn’t help her ironic smile. She knew Isilme was feigning innocence, but did she dare to expose the ruse, and risk driving the child even further away? Of course she didn’t. “Isilme, I know this may be...difficult for you to believe, but...Aravis is the child of a daeva.” Mother knew. She had known all along. But how? “How can you possibly know that?” “I have a feeling you know it as well,” said Rhen, unable to hold her tongue any longer. “And I know, Isilme, because he is virtually a mirror image of the daeva Agas.” Of course... How could she not have realized it? She felt incredibly foolish for not seeing it sooner. And somehow, she felt that there was nothing that would change her mother’s opinion of this boy she didn’t even know. But perhaps...perhaps now honesty was the best policy...”Um, Mother?...About the prophecy...Did it say that it had to the child had to be, um, Agas’s? Because, um...I think there’s something you should know.” Isilme’s manner was hesitant, and she refused to look at Rhen. Could there possibly be something her daughter knew that she didn’t?... Of course not, you fool, she told herself; and then she smiled. She knew exactly what Isilme was about to tell her, and she couldn’t help herself. She laughed. “Zirna. It was her that you’ve been sneaking out to meet all this time.” She drew an appalled glare from her daughter, but raised her hand in protest of the forthcoming tirade. “I am not angry. I suppose I should have expected it, really. But I will be having a talk with her mother.” Now, perhaps, she had her. “So...you’re not angry about me being friends with Nanghaithya’s daughter, but I can’t see Agas’s son. Is that what the prophecy says?” Rhen sighed again. “It is...complicated,” she said at last, uncomfortably. She didn’t suppose it was okay either way, but her emotions had nearly always clouded her judgement, and she knew it. “I realize this is a great weight to have lain upon you, but your father and I thought it important that you know. We can...discuss it more in the morning.” She rose. “Try to get some sleep.” I knew it, Isilme thought as her mother left and closed the door. She just doesn’t like Agas. But none of that was important. She crept excitedly to the window and peered out again, but the evening was still and silent as ever. She finally knew the entire prophecy; now all she needed was for Aravis to arrive, as they had planned. So where was he?...
  4. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    ok, so just so no one freaks out, something else is most likely going to happen. don't worry. (fyi, daeva_agas: for the record, i kind of thought the death of the narrator was pretty epic. shows what i know. :roll: ) more comments at a later date. thank you all for your patience.
  5. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    @tei: yeah, druid bit. but most likely not the druid you’re looking for. fyi, that particular druid is MIA at the moment. i'll leave you to ponder that. @d_a: (i’ll refer to you as such from now on so you don’t get confused anymore (hehe). if i recall correctly – and that would be a miracle, as it’s been so long – we have had numerous conversations about reading each other’s minds. i seem to have this problem with a lot of people. unless i really DO have mpd and you all are figments of my diseased imagination. moving on... i am truly touched, d_a. your picture is a work of art. i can’t tell you how impressed i am. i'm not good with the whole signature thing *rolls eyes* but i am using it as my desktop wallpaper. @marian: i'm having a hard time believing it myself. in fact, i had to reread the whole thing too. i’d almost forgotten where it was going XD @all: you’ll notice that this next chapter is written in the present tense (as opposed to the past). i did this near the beginning of the story as well, when i thought it was only going to be three chapters (ha ha ha!) anyway, i just wanted to point that out, in case you thought i screwed up. (yes, i'm looking in your direction, tei XD) Chapter 33 - It Ends The commander of the dragons falls down dead before me. At once, the ones still fighting from the air cry out in despair and empty the skies, returning, most likely, whence they came. The wounded and those on the ground slowly begin to surrender. The war is over. But somehow, it does not feel over. Something is amiss, though I cannot quite determine what. Sedona is quite a shambles, though that was to be expected; the fires are the most pressing problem, but that is dealt with easily enough. I have lost some good men—also expected. The other daevas have kept their distance, as has Aravis, so there is no harm done there, either. Even Aesma, who has never been able to resist an excuse to cause mayhem and destruction, has not come. So why do I have the feeling that there is something I am missing? I turn toward the castle, which now looks more like the crumbling fortress of Grazadh-Uguzg. I pause. I almost think I like it better this way. But there is more that needs to be done. The dragons may be done, but there is still no Saurva, no Ahriman, not even Eithera. After setting my captains to the task of removing the dead and relegating the prisoners, I begin to make my way back through the castle and to the throne room, where I might have better luck at planning my next move. Inside the castle there is nearly as much damage as outside. Still livable, I suppose. Not necessarily a priority. When I arrive at the throne room, I find the large glass windows facing me, which were already broken, now entirely devoid of glass. Any furniture that there might have been is utterly indistinguishable as various piles of smoldering ruin. Even the throne—for which, admittedly, I have never had much use—appears to be melting from the heat of the sporadic fires flickering on all sides of the room. While not terribly bothersome, it may not be so easy to think in here as I thought it might. But at least no one will trouble me for the time being... Just a moment. Do my ears deceive me?... I am sure I’ve heard something out of place...the sound of fabric...the rustle of a cloak, perhaps. Or perhaps it is my imagination. Much of the courtyard is burning, as is the throne room. It is, in truth, difficult to distinguish any sound above the roaring of flames. And the demonic aura I sense...there are demons—living, wounded, dead—scattered everywhere, so I cannot even be certain of that. But something tells me that I am not alone. “There is no reason to hide. I know you are here.” I am met with silence. Unnerving, but not wholly unexpected. I don’t suppose it matters; the last thing for which I have time is a game of hide-and-seek. I venture further into the throne room, and I hear that strange, nearly inaudible sound again, but I choose to ignore it. That proves to be a mistake. I am suddenly on my knees in agonizing pain. I look down, and see the source of my misery: a wide gash across my chest, pouring blood at an alarming rate. I have been Assassinated; but how? Only one demon I have ever known has used that spell...My senses are reeling. I cannot stay upright. As I collapse to the floor, I can hear footsteps approaching me. I roll over stiffly onto my back. It is Saurva. I should have guessed. He appears to be smiling, almost identically to when he caught me in the Oldwoods with Liya. I wonder vaguely how long he has been planning this, and why I did not see it coming... “Well, well, well,” he drawls slowly, still smiling. “Quite the predicament you’ve got yourself into, isn’t this? All this fighting...all these spent lives...the great city of Sedona in ruins even a demon cannot abide...” He shakes his head, and begins to walk a slow circle around me. “And here lies the great Agas,” he goes on with a sneer. “Helpless. Bleeding. His life slipping away, moment by moment. Did you recognize the spell? Lord Ahriman taught it to me. You were right all along, of course; he is returned. And he is stronger, more powerful. It was I who made him thus. ‘The Faithful Servant’. “You didn’t think this war had anything to do with territory, or even... her, I hope. I am painfully aware that I had no chance of defeating you at that game. No, Agas. This entire war was a diversion. Merely a way to distract you long enough to slip in here and Assassinate you. I must grudgingly accept your skills as a fighter; but against my skill at deception, what good are they? “And poor, misunderstood Agas. You knew all along, yet no one else wanted to believe you. They did not want to get involved, did they, in the petty bickering that has been going on between us all these years. How fortunate it all worked out for me, don’t you think? And now it appears the Prophecy is going to come to pass after all.” My lungs are on fire; I cannot move for the pain. My head is spinning. I am losing too much blood. And I can see that he is taking great pleasure in watching me suffer. “And yet I see that you are still a coward,” I say, even though it is taking a great effort to do so. “Are you really in a position to be insulting me?” he replies. “I’ve just killed you!” Damn him, he’s right. But I cannot go down without some sort of fight. “By sneaking up on me from behind,” I remind him. “Still afraid to face me—” “Enough!” he says angrily. “I am not dead yet.” “I said, enough,” he says again. “I will not let you ruin this moment for me. The Dark Lord will be so pleased that you are finally out of the way...And after this, I can take care of that boy of yours...” Have I heard that correctly? I shake my head slowly, but it makes things worse. My vision is beginning to get blurry. I cannot even summon the strength to cast a spell. But I must do something. I try to get up, and fail. Saurva lets out a hollow laugh. “Tenacious, aren’t we? That is quite all right. I have waited this long; what is a little longer?” “You touch...one hair...on my son’s head...” I can no longer speak at a normal rate. Breathing has become difficult. He’s got a wicked smile on his face. “Oh, not to worry, Agas. I won’t hurt him. I simply must be sure his part in the prophecy is not played. It isn’t as though I will be taking pleasure in taking his life; I have nothing against the boy personally. Or the girl, of course; pity, but she shall have to go, too. Can’t take any chances, you see. Besides...what do you care? You’ll already be dead.” Everything is swimming in and out of focus. I cannot...think straight...He is laughing again... ...There is...a loud...bang. A woman screams. There is a shout...a bright light...Saurva is screaming now... “Agas!” says the woman. I can...feel her...beside me...I blink hard. It is Indra. I shake my head again. I can think a little more clearly. “Indra,” I manage, though it does not sound like me. She puts her finger to my lips. There are tears pouring down her face. “Don’t speak,” she says quietly. “You will be all right.” “Snuck up on me,” I tell her. “Couldn’t face me like a man.” “Agas...” she says again, and begins to cry very hard. “Please...don’t...” She does not understand. I need to tell her...before...it is...too late...I am...losing...my senses...again... “Aravis...” It is all...I can...manage. “He is fine,” she says...She still...does not...understand... ...It is...growing...dark...I can...not...see her...anymore... “...Indra—” ...THE END... *********************************************** so i'll give you a moment to process that. .... in case it wasn’t clear, i did, in no uncertain terms, just kill off the narrator. .... .... .... take that however you will. :evil:
  6. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    @agas: ok, first, if i recall correctly, we've had this conversation more than once. i am not a mind reader, nor am i inside your head. great minds think alike. let's leave it at that. second, none of my daevas are shape-shifters. wait. *...thinking...* no, i'm pretty sure they aren't. (fyi, i'm planning on doing something soon that i'm fairly sure you haven't even thought of. and if you have...then...doom on you. XD) as far as fight scenes...i just like them, i guess. i get a lot of my inspiration from tolkien. plus i love super-violent movies and video games, so that helps. and one last thing: why exactly are you blaming me for your stripper daevas?... @tei: no matter how many times i reread these things, i always miss something. and you always catch it. so thanks. (oh, and i fixed it, btw) @theone: i do believe i'm older than daeva_agas, so technically i would be the one with the multiple personalities (hehehe) @sana: agas is cool, isn't he?...thanks! so here's a little something that just came to mind not too long ago. it's really short, but hey, it's something... It was a flash, as lightning illuminating the darkness for the briefest moment. A great city burning. A palace. A twisted face, smug with triumph. She had to tell someone.
  7. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    thank you, friends! i appreciate you sticking around after all this time. i hope not to disappoint. here's the next chapter... Chapter 32 – The Siege of Sedona The malice in the dragon’s eye would have sent a lesser man cowering to his knees. He tossed his head back and let out a long, piercing cry, and as one his forces descended, all except their apparent general, who rose high into the air to command from above. As the first line approached the walls, they simultaneously received a torrent of flaming boulders launched from catapults along the walls. In every direction dragons were sent shrieking to the ground with broken wings or limbs or necks (the fire, of course, being merely diversionary, as it is relatively ineffective against a dragon of any size). As I watched, it briefly came to mind what a waste it all was, as dragons had once truly been noble creatures and would have made the daevas allies of the highest caliber. But when there are several thousand of the creatures attempting to destroy you, you have little sympathy for their fate. As the first line were dropping from our assault, those behind recognized their peril and began to circumvent my army’s projectiles, opting now to spiral upward and dive directly into the city at breakneck speed. I and the other two or three demons that were capable used Motion Freeze to such effect as it had, which was to slow the enemies’ descent long enough to allow the archers to do their work. As dragon after dragon fell from the sky peppered with poisoned arrows, the third wave were once again forced to change tactics. These sat hovering above the city, spouting fire at the soldiers and buildings below them. Here I unleashed my “secret weapons”, another spectacular achievement by Zarich, who, I pondered even then, would be receiving the highest praise I could give. He had assisted me in wrangling some two hundred Nightmares, and through our combined magical efforts we had “stabled” them, if you will, behind one of Zarich’s Gates to the Demon Realm, which he opened near the center of town. When the dragons began their fire attack, I removed the spell that sealed the Gate, and the Nightmares burst through in a fury that made Indra’s seem almost tame. They bore the brunt of the assault, but it only enraged them further, and they sprouted wings—-a feat I only just discovered a few days prior—-and charged with maniacal fervor at the offenders. All the while, the enemy general circled above the scene, piping and crooning and shrieking his orders to his reptilian troops. The more that were beaten, the louder his voice became, and the more furious was the forthcoming assault; some of the wounded even got up to rejoin the battle. It was clear that if I was to end this, I would have to go through him, one way or another. A crested dragon the color of rust swooped by me and clipped my shoulder with a razor-sharp horn protruding from its wing. I lost no time in leaping from the wall onto its back. I commanded it to take me to the general, and after many furious but unsuccessful attempts at bucking me off, it did just that. The commander did not speak as I hovered before him on the back of one of his own soldiers, but his expression spoke volumes; though if intimidation was his aim, he was wasting his time, and I told him so. “You cannot defeat me,” he replied coldly. I couldn’t help rolling my eyes. “Clearly.” He noted the sarcasm in my tone, as evidenced by the sparks he snorted. I went on, “You say I know why you are here. You are correct. So why waste the lives of your kinsmen? You have come for me. Let us settle it. Or,” I added with a knowing smirk, “was that not the order you were given?” He appeared to wish to deny, to protest, but did not do so. Instead he howled to his troops, who paused only a moment in their attack, and then he done into the city and came to land in the palace courtyard. I bade my steed take me down as well; it dropped before its commander, and the moment I had dismounted it took to the sky again, dragging a spiked tail roughly across the middle of my back as it went. It received a dose of Reality Shift for its impertinence. “That armor will not protect you forever,” said the dragon commander with an uncannily Saurva-like sneer. “You’d be surprised,” I replied casually. “Demon-made armor is as resilient as its bearer. I have had this armor for more than three and a half millennia.” “Then I shall be certain not to damage it when I destroy you.” With these final words the dragon’s first move was to spray me with his deadly breath. I cast Motion Freeze, which allowed me to stop the flame mid-stream, and said, “How unsporting of a dragon; I haven’t even drawn my sword.” I did so, and he extinguished the flame and growled, “I shall be taking that with me as well,” and turned with ease to swing his tail at me like a vast scaly club. As I parried the foot-long spikes of his tail, I asked him, “I wonder, to whom shall you be taking them?” His answer was an extension of his right wing in my direction. The force of the blow knocked me backward a few feet, but I remained standing, now unable to keep from grinning. He howled with rage, shot up into the sky, and blasted me again with fire. This time my spell was not fast enough, and I was engulfed in flame. By the time I was able to escape the ring of fire, the dragon rushed at me and knocked me to the ground, laying a heavy hind claw across my chest. He twisted his neck around to look me in the face. “Are you ready to surrender?” I asked him hoarsely. He tilted his head to one side. “Is that a jest?” “I have gone easy on you up to now. Give me the answers I seek, and you may leave this place with your life.” He pressed down with his foot, and leaned closer. “You are aware that I am about to crush you into oblivion, are you not?” “Who is your master?” I hissed, gritting my teeth against the crushing weight upon my lungs. “I serve no one,” he answered, but too late: I had seen the hesitation in his manner and doubt in his eye. I nodded. “No one. Then there are at least two, three if I am not mistaken. I know who they are. Tell me where they are, and you shall not be harmed.” “Odd that you still think you might stand a chance against me,” he grumbled. “You are forgetting something, my friend.” He released some of the pressure, drew his head back, and chuckled derisively. “And what is that, my lord? ” “Reality Shift.” In seconds he was on the ground, writhing and screaming. I got to my feet, eased my breathing, and lifted the spell. As he lay there, motionless save his rapid breathing, I said, “You have one last chance. Where is Saurva? Where is Ahriman?” In response, he rolled over until he was back on all fours, roared, and charged at me. A foot from me he reared up onto his hind legs, raising his foreleg as if to strike. Before he could land his blow, I ran my sword through his scaly heart. He stopped. He reeled. He fell.
  8. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    so... i realize it's been almost a year since i've been anywhere near here. i've been dealing with a lot of change, stress, and personal tragedy since last august, and subsequently haven't had much time or drive to write much of anything. plus my computer crashed, which is not terribly conducive to accessing the internet. at least i had the foresight to back everything up on an external hard drive. ANYway, i recently stumbled across this story again, and after rereading it, i guess i managed to work up enough inspiration to get going again. i like to hope someone might still be interested but if nothing else, i promised myself i'd finish this thing. it's just going to take a lot longer than i planned. so, picking up where i left off... Chapter 31 – Strategy Though the dragons had come to Sedona, I knew that these were only a forerunner of what was to come; the majority were still lurking in the mountains. It was time to reformulate my strategy; it was time to exterminate. In the days and weeks that followed, the battle intensified. Dragon attacks upon the villages of the Western Isle became grander, fiercer, and far more frequent. In addition, the dragons were not only coming down from the mountains, but also from off the Isle; these latter were always accompanied by demon riders, who continued to ransack buildings set ablaze by their reptilian steeds and slaughter everyone within, be they human or demon. I myself entered the fray countless times—-much to Aravis’s chagrin, who, more often than not, I dispatched to the Eastern or Northern Kingdom to keep him out of danger, which of course was the very place he wanted to be—-and witnessed horrors of war that I had not done for centuries. Yet the one thing that struck, if not surprised, me was that throughout all the violence and devastation, Saurva had yet to show hide or hair of himself. And naturally, each time I or an envoy attempted to confront him on the matter, we were met with as much resistance as if the fate of an eon rested with the concealment of Saurva’s strategy, and of Saurva himself. I continued to send scouts across the continent to report the activity of the dragons in their mountain camps. Though the lesser towns saw battle, my main focus would now be Sedona itself, and so I sent word for large numbers of my troops to withdraw from their various posts and return to the city, leaving a skeleton crew of soldiers at each base to maintain order; I knew it would make for a good amount of cleanup afterward, but I further realized that the Isle’s main city would feel the brunt of the assault. As I knew that it would be several days before these soldiers arrived, I made ready those that I already had to defend Sedona from the skies at a moment’s notice. I further employed a good number of humans to reinforce the city walls; relegating this laborious task to humans freed more orcs, goblins, and demons for battle, a task for which all parties involved were grateful. Well, perhaps not the humans. Another factor that I could not ignore was the dragons’ skill in battle. The more soldiers I sent after them, the more I would inevitably lose, and so I knew I would have to employ other means to set my extermination plans into motion. As a general rule, I have never found the beasts of the surface world terribly useful in battle, but sometimes such things must be done. Aesma was helpful in this respect, as he sent me a good number of rogues and demons that had remained in Thais, even though I had never made such a request. Perhaps anything to plague Saurva was enough of an excuse for him. But I was further able to secure “ground troops”, so to speak, of my own, in the creatures of the Western Isle. Prairie snakes, though not terribly intelligent, were highly belligerent, and always followed the smell of rotting meat, which made it easy for my soldiers to lure them into battle with the dragons. They fought fiercely, and multiplied so rapidly and so often that they gave the appearance that for each one destroyed, two would take its place. For my extermination strategy, it was necessary to resort to a rather unconventional means of summoning warriors. Wyverns were as strong and as magically powerful as dragons; their only weakness was their inability to fly, which was something I could always work around. Unfortunately, the vast majority of wyverns were located within the Demon Realm, and it was highly impractical, not to mention ridiculously idiotic, to attempt to round them up and transport them through the Demon Portal. Thus, I called Zarich to Sedona. Given his extraordinary success at opening the Dream Portal, my hope was that it would not be a far cry from doing the same to that other normally inaccessible place. If this could be achieved, then I would be able to bring the wyverns directly to me. And Zarich did not disappoint me. Though he would still never tell how he had done it with the Dream Portal, he was willing—-even eager—-to assist me. I taught him the Gate spell, which he learned, if not mastered, with relative ease, and explained what it was I required of him; namely, to reverse the spell, so that a creature, in this case a wyvern, might be brought from the Demon Realm to the surface, similar to the way a demon summoner operated. His secrecy was maddening, but he insisted that he be allowed to work on it in private. Within a week, he had managed to do just as I had hoped, and had even brought through one of the Demon Realm’s notorious winged scorpions to prove it. All that was left was to gather the wyverns together—-which was accomplished by sending large quantities of, ironically, prairie snake meat through one of my own Demon Gates—-and I had all the fighters I needed. The most difficult task was actually drawing the dragons down out of the mountains. Dragons are cunning and suspicious, and would not blindly leap into battle without some degree of certainty of victory; unless, of course, their base of operations was compromised. And I made certain that this was the case, for the gigantic purple nemesis birds of the Western Highlands were a force to be reckoned with when brought together for a single purpose. Here I employed a few demons from my troops that had some skill with the Charm spell. They sent the birds into the mountains to wreak havoc upon the dragons, and the latter were soon forced to abandon the heights for lower ground, where my forces were waiting for them. Of course I realized that these petty skirmishes could not be the end of Saurva’s assault. I knew that eventually his dragons would descend in full force upon the city itself; it was only a question of when. Thus in addition to reinforcing the city walls, I set a watch along them day and night. Dragons, as one can well imagine, have little to fear, and so rather than seek a suitable deterrent, I resolved to be well prepared for them when they came. And come they did. Having been handled over the course of several months by the vicious rogues and ever-multiplying prairie snakes in the south and the fierce wyverns in the north and east, Saurva’s armies had finally decided it was time to make their final stand. It was some time before dawn on that day, when the keen eyesight of a goblin upon the eastern wall spied the vast dark cloud moving swiftly across the sea in our direction. When I received this news, I doubled the reinforcement about the walls, sent into hiding anyone not necessary for defense of the city, and stood upon the eastern wall, the gates directly beneath me. A dim gray light crept across the sky as the dragons neared, as though they carried the hidden daylight with them. They were still a few leagues from the city when, the goblin watcher reported, some began to break off from the left and right flanks of the battalion. I guessed they would attempt to bring round to the western end of the city, as of course my attention would be diverted to the main unit from the east. But archers, catapults, and highly skilled demons were positioned at all ends of Sedona, and waited not for my command, but for the dragons to do precisely what I expected, and what I told my troops, that they would do. At last the battalion, close on three thousand all told, arrived at the city, stopping to hover in midair some hundred yards beyond the gates. At the forefront was a crocodilian dragon with scales of jet black, not the largest I had seen but a good deal larger than most. His vast batlike wings created a gale as they beat back and forth keeping him suspended before me. He turned a large amber eye upon me, and after a few moments spoke in a low voice that carried over the city walls. “You know why we have come, Daeva Agas. Have you any last words before we lay your city to waste?” I glanced at the horde behind their leader, then behind me, then turned back to him. Then I smiled. “Is this all of you, then?”
  9. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    so i know it's been a while - which i did warn everyone about - and i just went through and realized that i had this entire section finished months ago, except for the last two lines. so hopefully anyone who may be still reading this remembers where i left off ('cause i didn't :roll: ) and is still interested. and i won't promise that i'll be back soon than last time...but i'll keep trying thanks for sticking with me! Isilme dried the last of the dishes and moved them to their cupboards. Her movements were mechanical, as though she was there in body, but not in spirit. Rhen shook her head. “Is there anything else you need me to do, Mother?” Rhen sighed. Isilme’s voice was toneless, as it had been for the last several days. Rhen had been unable to find anything about which to talk to her daughter that would change it, either. Part of her, she thought, could sympathize with Isilme’s pain; but another part wanted to slap her and bring her to her senses. “No, nothing. Thank you.” Isilme nodded, but did not face her mother. Looking into her face only made her want to rage and scream, but she knew too well it would get her nowhere. “I think I’ll go to bed, then,” she said, and made her way toward the doorway. “Isilme.” Isilme stopped, but did not turn. “Yes, Mother,” she said flatly. Rhen sighed once more. “Nothing.” When Isilme entered her room and shut the door, she crawled into bed, pulled the covers to her chin, and stared out of the window opposite her, forcing herself to think of nothing but falling asleep. But every time she closed her eyes, she could only see his face; and when she opened her eyes again, they were filled with tears. Perhaps, said a voice at the back of her mind, it was true what she had overheard her mother say: that she was being unreasonable. But how could true love ever be unreasonable? When she looked and suddenly saw a dark shape at her window, she thought she imagined it at first. Then she heard a light tapping. She flung the blankets off of her and slipped from the bed, approaching the window cautiously. She drew back the curtain, and her heart leapt into her throat: there stood Aravis, handsome as ever and bearing a sheepish grin. She glanced at the door, then turned to him and put her finger to her lips. He nodded, and she quietly opened the window to allow him entry. Once he had climbed through the window, she flew at him, and they embraced tightly for several moments. And then, as if he had burned her, she pushed him away as fled back to the bed, where she curled up against the headboard and fought back more tears. He followed and sat tentatively at the foot of the bed, and waited. “You should not be here,” she murmured at last. Then the tears escaped her eyes, and she sobbed quietly, “I am not allowed to see you anymore.” She turned to look at him, and saw a smile on his face. “I thought as much. I was told the very same thing; yet here I am.” “They will find out,” she muttered resentfully. “And anyway, it’s your fault. Why didn’t you tell me?” Thinking she referred to the prophecy, he told her, “I didn’t know.” She narrowed her eyes, and lunged forward and shoved him. “Why didn’t you tell me you’re a demon?” “Oh.” “You lied to me.” “You never asked,” he returned. She moved as if to hit him again, and he put his hands up to stop her. “All right, yes, I lied to you. Technically. It’s just...” He looked away for a moment, and then back. “I was afraid of losing you. If you had known I was a demon when we met, would you still feel the same? Would we even be having this conversation right now?” She thought back to that moment, the first time she saw him, and realized that it would not have mattered if he had set her on fire; she would have felt the same, the way she did now, the way she always would. “No. We would not be having this conversation. There would have been no need, because I would have been far better prepared to defend you against them had I known in the first place.” His brow furrowed, and he tilted his head curiously to one side. “You believe it is because I am a demon that we cannot be together?” She nodded slowly, dubiously, and he shook his head. “‘Demon’ and ‘human’ have little, if anything, to do with it.” He paused. “There is a prophecy—” “I know about the prophecy,” she interjected. “I know it involves me, and the demon Ahriman.” Here she faltered, knowing only what she had overheard her parents say several years before. “Something about a...a revolution...” He nodded grimly. He had hoped that the Prophecied girl of whom his father had told him was not Isilme, but now he realized that she could be no other. He took and released a deep breath, and explained to her all that he had learned. Her expression when he was through was a mixture of fear and shock. “Then,” she began slowly, as her swimming head fought to keep a grasp on it all, “if I am supposed to lead some sort of...revolution against demonkind...what would happen to you?” He shrugged. “Eternity in the Demon Realm would be my best hope, though death is far more likely. Zirna, too, incidentally.” Her eyes widened. “Zirna is a demon, too?” She threw her hands up in defeat. “Is there anything else you haven’t told me?” He grimaced. “Well...yes. Zirna told you that our fathers were old friends, did she not? It is because they are both...um...daevas.” “Daevas.” “My, er, my mother, as well.” She shook her head in disbelief for a few moments, then stopped and said, “Wait. ‘Child of a daeva.’” At his puzzled expression, she went on, “My parents said something about the child of a daeva, something to do with the prophecy.” “Indeed,” he replied resentfully, realizing now that his father had not, in fact, told him everything. “You realize what this means.” She nodded. “We need to find out the entire prophecy.”
  10. kaz

    Healed UPDATED April 13, 2010

    first of all, don't pass out... second, approximately 400 years ago, you mentioned to me that you updated this, and now i've FINALLY found a spare few moments to come here. (of course, finding the thing took more than a few moments...) anyway, on to business. amazingly enough, i came in reading this, knowing exactly where it had left off, which is either a shining tribute to your writing skills, or a touch of dementia on my part. or both. either way, very sweet and touching, as, if i recall correctly, has been this story throughout. thanks for bringing me back, so to speak. just be patient; i don't expect that my visits will be much more than few and far-between. unless you email me continually. XD
  11. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    agas: aww, don't be sad. i'm just teasing ya. i don't mind the questions. and as far as the black speech and elvish and stuff, i basically googled it (except i use ask.com), and came up with sites made by other dorks who have actually studied and written and translated tolkien's languages into english. thelandofshadow.com is great for the black speech of mordor, and ardalambion (uib.no/People/hnohf/) is a good starting point for elvish, which is a lot more complex and detailed. so good luck with that one. oh, and thank you. :blush: tei: thanks for stopping by. and for the record, the book is actually out of print. but that's another story; one i won't get into here. (i'd reply to you again, agas, but it appears you're not even speaking to me in that last one. XD XD)
  12. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    agas: *SIGH* you're killing me. i'll translate. the rest, i'll pm you. indra says, "You told him the Prophecy?" (that part you could understand) agas: "Parts of it." indra: "Which parts?" agas: "He does not know it concerns him." then aravis says he won't see isilme anymore. agas (to indra): "You have no faith in me." indra (sarcastically): "Yes, thank you." and for the record, i didn't actually make it up. it's 'actual' Elvish, as in JRR Tolkien's made-up language from "The Lord of the Rings" and his other various works. i just translated my dialogue into his language. (same thing for my Demonish language; it's actually Tolkien's 'Black Speech'. yes, i'm a dork, i know. XD) sana: thank you! i'm glad you like it! and battles are one of my favorite things to write, so the next few chapters ought to be pretty-action packed. but it may take a while; after all, it is a war... dad0303: thanks! i'm glad i had you going; i like to keep everyone guessing...hehehe! and all: as i mentioned to sana above, it may be a while before the next chapter. war is not a quick write for me, because i like to do it right, so please bear with me. and thanks!!
  13. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    agas: ?!?!?!?!?! what, are you doing a police lineup? and why do i see a comic coming out of that question... so i'm not so great with height per se, but here's what i came up with: agas - 6' 5" aesma - 7' 6" zarich - 6' 8" saurva - 5' 10" tawrich - 5' 11" indra - 5' 9" nanghaithya - 6' 2" fyi, i've taken some license with zarich. i know he's huge compared to the others in the game, but it just seemed a little ridiculous, relatively speaking. but maybe that's just me. anything else? eye color? blood type? great-grandmothers' maiden names? XD XD (on a (mostly) completely unrelated topic, i keep seeing your crack pairings and wondering how you'd handle this one...and by the way, i've got a million of 'em. hehehe...) bryan: thanks! but i'm not sure how you'll feel about eithera--oops. i've said too much. Chapter 30 - The Informant Before we officially adjourned the council, Aesma wondered if we ought not to reopen the Demon Portal; the consensus, however, was that it remain shut. There were two reasons behind our decision. The first was that if Saurva and Eithera truly were in the Demon Realm, they were not necessarily just behind the door; the Demon Realm was vast, as large as the world itself, and we simply did not have the resources to search it. The second reason was that if they returned to find the Portal standing open, they would realize we had discovered their secret, and would be far better prepared for retaliation. When the council ended, I immediately returned to the Western Isle; and Indra accompanied me, much to my chagrin, as I imagined she wished to pester me about speaking to Aravis. As we entered Sedona, I decided to divert her attention before she could start. “You agreed with me back there,” I commented, trying not to sound overtly surprised. “Are you feeling well?” She chuckled. “I am. In fact, I think, perhaps, I see things now with a bit more clarity. If nothing else, there is one thing that Ahriman and Eithera have in common: that they wish to destroy us. And Saurva—-much as I hate to admit it—-would be the perfect link between them.” “I see. And what led you to this conclusion, other than the fact that I have been saying it for the last...how many years has it been?” She sighed. “He is never at our councils. He is never even at his palace. No one knows where he is the majority of the time. And he has launched a war upon the one person who has suspected him above all others. What, short of treachery, could be the motive for such behavior?” “These are among the many reasons why I have kept the dragon in custody; I do not believe he would have come were he not close in Saurva’s council.” “Not, I imagine, that you would need to hold him, based upon your description,” she pointed out. “Would you mind if I accompanied you?” I stopped. “First, since when did you start asking my permission to do anything; and second, if I said no, would you not do it anyway?” I received a smirk in response, and we spoke no further until we arrived at the palace, and the now nearly deserted courtyard. I demanded of the goblin at the front entrance the whereabouts of the dragon, and, quailing, he informed me that “the priestess” had moved it to a garden round back. The term “garden”, I should point out, refers only to the name humans would have given it in the past, for it now resembled nothing like that which a human might consider a garden; it was more a stone courtyard littered with withered trees and thorn bushes, surrounded by a high wrought-iron fence. The dragon appeared to be in vastly better shape than when I had first seen him, curled comfortably in a large, dense patch of brittle straw, which I imagined was some sort of green living thing at some point. Daena was still attending to the dragon, and surprisingly, Aravis was also still present, though he did have his infamous resentful expression on display. “Is he well enough to speak yet?” I asked of Daena, nodding toward the dragon. “That remains to be seen,” she said mysteriously. Indra groaned impatiently, and Daena went on, “He says he will speak to no one but the daevas.” “And apparently he is not the only one,” Aravis muttered just loudly enough for us to hear. Daena rolled her eyes. “He asked me about the Prophecy,” she explained. “I told him it was up to his parents to tell him what they thought he ought to know. Although,” she added in a low voice so that Aravis would not hear, “there is relatively little that he does not know already.” Even without looking at her, I could tell that Indra’s reaction to this news had gone swiftly from surprise to fury; and apparently Daena realized it as well, because she quickly bade us farewell and departed the castle grounds. Indra turned to me slowly, and I to her. It was difficult to pinpoint her exact emotion, but it was certainly somewhere between shock and rage. When she spoke, it was with carefully measured venom. “You told him the Prophecy?” Aravis was watching us expectantly now, and I knew I could not speak openly, an event for which Indra had obviously not accounted. The only way for me to respond was in a language he would not understand. “Rantali sallo,” I told her. She narrowed her eyes and crossed her arms. “Mana rantali?” she said through gritted teeth. “Caris lá ista mahtas sé,” I replied with a touch of impatience. “And incidentally,” I added, speaking once again in Demon, “perhaps you might not have had so much trouble had you done the same.” She stood there, a furious statue of herself, for some time before she responded, also switching back to Demon. “Very well.” “What was that?” Aravis demanded, looking wildly back and forth between us. “Elvish,” Indra replied briskly, with a smirk at me. “And if it had been meant for you to know, we would have spoken plainer, wouldn’t we? Now what about the girl?” Taken off-course and momentarily dazed, he stammered in defeat, “I—-nothing. I—-will not—-see her anymore.” “Haryatyë lá estel mi nye,” I said with a shake of my head. “Now if you don’t mind, I have a bit of urgent business away South.” “Ná, lye hantanyë,” she said sardonically, and followed me across the courtyard to where the dragon slept. “My lord. My lady. I am called Asgrim,” he said slowly as we approached, lifting his head a foot off the ground and opening his eyes halfway. “My humblest apologies for my arrival, and sincerest gratitude for the Healer with which you provided me.” The fact that he knew who we were without the benefit of sight, coupled with his use of Demonish rather than Common Speech, led me to believe that I had not erred in judgement by sparing his life, at least while he had information. “Do not thank me yet,” I warned him. “First we shall see how useful you are. Explain to me the manner of your coming.” He raised his head and turned himself slightly, perhaps to make himself more comfortable. “I was once highly regarded—-trusted, you might say. I learned many things that my master would not like repeated; and I never once considered betrayal. And then, I was asked to do something unconscionable, something no self-respecting dragon, or demon for that matter, would even consider. I refused. “From that day forward, my trust was relinquished. I was chained and imprisoned, made to endure torments, neglect, and finally abandonment for my insolence. It became too much to bear. I took my last opportunity, and the last of my strength, and managed to escape when one of the master’s servants came for my regular punishment. “I know now that my life is forfeit; they will be hunting me. That is why I have come. Things are happening that should not be. The Prophecy will come to fruition.” “What do you know of the Prophecy?” demanded Indra. Asgrim turned to her and bowed his head low. “I have heard it in its entirety—-from the lord Saurva. It seems it was some years ago, based upon—-” “Yes,” I interjected; I had a feeling he was about to comment upon the age of our son, and as closely a secret as we had guarded it, I was not ready to allow this reptilian turncoat to spoil it. “What has it to do with your master, of whom the Prophecy does not speak?” He nodded again. “He has been seeking the Dark Lord for some time. Whether he has discovered him, I cannot tell; what I do know is that there was another, a small dark figure, hooded and cloaked, with whom he took much council in years past. It is possible—-nay, likely—-that this other has not gone far. I deemed him a powerful sorcerer, at the least. And there was yet another, far more powerful, though this one I had only ever heard rumor of.” “Not Eithera, then?” I wondered. “No. Yet...I was once visited by the druid as well. In fact...she repeated to me the request of Lord Saurva to commit the unspeakable act that I was imprisoned for refusing.” Indra turned to me, folding her arms again. “So. Saurva...Eithera...and two others, conspiring to bring about the Prophecy.” “The hooded sorcerer is Ahriman, I have no doubt,” I confirmed. “But the other...” I thought long and hard, but found myself at a loss. Who else with that much power could wish to destroy us? “There is one thing more,” Asgrim added, “that you, in particular, my lord, ought to know. It is regarding the war.” It was the last thing he was permitted to say, as several things happened at that moment. The entire castle grounds were rocked by a violent earthquake, and a shriek from above signalled the arrival of more than a dozen armored demons on dragons. Asgrim retreated to a corner of the courtyard near the castle, beneath the balcony where he could not be seen from the sky. Indra barked, “Aravis!” and when he hurried forward she took hold of his arm and said, “You are coming home with me.” She then shot me a dirty look and the pair of them vanished before Aravis had time to protest. I re-entered the castle and raced through to the front courtyard to attempt to draw the dragons away from the grounds, but by then my archers had already unseated several riders and were peppering the steeds with their black-feathered arrows. Most of the enemy had followed me, as if they had been commanded to destroy me alone. I ordered my soldiers to fall back, and once they had, I summoned as much strength as I had and shouted, “Gate Extura!” A vast, gaping hole in the fabric of space and time, easily twenty feet across, opened to the sky above me, and one by one the dragons and their riders were drawn screeching into its center. I maintained the spell as long as I could, but eventually had to concede to its strain and release it. When the void was gone, only one of the dragons had been able to escape it, but it was taken down just outside the castle wall by a well-placed shot from a catapult. I took a moment to catch my breath, and then returned to the rear garden. Asgrim, as I suspected, was gone; but whether he fled, or was taken, I could not discern from the scene. So many unanswered questions, I thought as I turned my eyes skyward. But the questions would have to wait. War had come to Sedona.
  14. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    agas: yes, my agas is bald. that's what he tells me, anyway. pretty boy? yeah, my agas would punch you for saying that. and aesma does look like a minotaur, and tawrich is mostly a skeleton; but if it was a movie, you'd need humans to play them, right? they'd just have really good makeup. the guy i casted for nanghaithya is, in fact, johnny depp. i was just being a wiseguy; because, if i may quote a friend of mine, 'how do you not know who johnny depp is??' (and he'd be clean-shaven in the movie.) theone: thanks!! i know i was gone a long time; life sort of got in the way of my creativity. but it's back. i'll do my best to keep my absences fewer and further between. agas again: DRUGS ARE BAD! just kidding. i'm impressed how much you made saurva look like snape. and the clothing designs work; i'm not exactly donatella versace. XD oh, and i decided to go with dominic monaghan as zarich (less the facial hair). do with that what you will. now let me get back to work on my chapter already!
  15. kaz

    The Agas Saga

    valkyriet: thanks! sana: aww, you're sweet! and yes, aravis does have a great deal of respect for his father. sort of a contrast for the way agas feels about his own father. agas: so i thought the best way to do this was to make an attempt at casting for 'the agas saga' movie. these are the people who come to mind. not that i've put any thought into this. :roll: agas - timothy olyphant (star of the movie 'hitman'; exchange the suit for blue battle armor.) nanghaithya - this dude (whoever he is XD XD; all he needs is purple hair) saurva - alan rickman (just give him red hair and those freaky horns on his head) aesma - rodrigo santoro (dude who played xerxes in '300'; but really, it's more like the character xerxes playing aesma, because he's this really huge dude in the movie.) tawrich - sir ian mckellen (only, you know, more skeletal) fyi, i'm still having a tough time casting indra (though for some reason naomi watts with blue skin and hair comes to mind) and zarich. also, if you haven't seen '300' or 'hitman', google them. both awesome. and any daeva i cast is pending their ability to use a british accent (though i know most of these actors are good). yes, my demons all have british accents. most of the humans don't. i don't know why; that's just the way they speak to me in my head. and i haven't cast anyone else yet. because i don't care about anyone else. XD (oh, and yes, that IS what zarich was thinking...) tei: see response to daeva_agas above. and i'm open to suggestions as to who should play zarich in the movie... oh, and thanks! dad0303: thanks to you, too! (btw, agas again: give me a minute! sheesh! XD)
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