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Once Upon a DDO Episode 20

EndarkenedRationalist
Posts: 14,201
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9/28/2014 7:22:56 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
The previous episode can be read here: http://www.debate.org...

We draw even closer still. At this point, I believe episode 22 will be the season finale! Since the fanfiction appears to be wearing out its welcome, I will take a break once season 1 is finished but before introducing season 2! In the meantime, Rev and Jonbonbon have outstanding stories ongoing, and I highly recommend examining those!

14 Years Earlier

The Final Days of the Rune Wars


Lannan forced himself to breathe.

Fluffy was massive. Trolls weren't supposed to get that big. Surely it defied physics. But then again, if there was one thing trolls excelled at, it was defying logic and reason. And Fluffy's appearance should not have logically existed outside of the world of nightmares.

His skin - or was it fur - was bright pink. A massive breastplate covered Fluffy's chest. It was as scarlet as the sky overhead.

Fluffy roared, and the very earth shook.

"Steady, men!" General Koopin's voice was a beacon of calm against Fluffy's dark terror. "Hold!"

"CHARGE!" Fluffy roared, and with a sound so loud it threatened to rent the land apart, his army rushed forward.

"For intellectualism!" Koopin hollered, and he rushed forward on his horse. Lannan grabbed his spear, unsheathed his sword, and ran after the general. His brother soldiers were right beside him.

And that was the death of order.

Friend and foe blurred into a misty haze dotted with liquid life fleeing its hosts. A growling face appeared before Lannan, and he rammed his spear into it. Something hot and wet splattered across his face and chest, but the growling face vanished. Another took its place, and Lannan swung again, and again, and again, and again, until his arm abandoned the human plane and became machine in its repetitive movements, striking out at threat after threat, never-ending, for the forces of stupidity and the flaming bait of trolls always outnumbers the defenders of reason and faith, so much so that the battle carried on without end, as it always had, as it always does, as it always will.

Screams and orders became music, and soldiers became deaf. Then they became dead.

Something whacked Lannan in the face, and he tumbled over. His head cracked against the ground, and suddenly the red sky was filled with stars. Lannan blinked, trying to clear his vision.

The troll who had knocked him over raised a large club. Lannan saw the motion as blurry and faceless, but he recognized the intent. He tried to lift his sword, but his arm wasn't cooperating. Where was his spear?

Had his father been right after all? Lannan had thought of war as honorable. Glorious. The captain, Ore_Ele, had certainly made it seem so. But this...this was insanity.

The troll bellowed as the club began its descent. Lannan had thought time would slow, but it didn't. That club was simply going to mash his head to pulp.

What a way to die.

Suddenly the troll's bellow turned into a high-pitched whine. That, too, transformed into a gurgle. The club slipped from the troll's hand and fell next to Lannan. Lannan pulled himself to a sitting position. His vision spun and swam, but he could discern what looked like a knife protruding from the troll's chest. There was another in its throat.

The troll fell to its knees, pawing weakly at the blade in its throat. Lannan watched as another man he had never seen before walked over. The man didn't look like a soldier. Not one of General Koopin's, anyway. He had flowing black hair, and rather than wear a military uniform, he had long, white, blue, and gray robes.

The man paused before the troll. He reached down, pulled out a pair of golden spectacles, and placed them on his face. He gazed at the troll for a few seconds.

"Hm," he said. Somehow Lannan heard him over the chaos. "Unworthy."

The man placed his foot against the troll's chest and pushed. The troll toppled over onto its back and never moved again. The man turned back to peer down at Lannan.

His eyes! Lannan had to resist the urge to scream. He had never seen such detachment, such disinterest, such ice in a man's eyes.

The man turned on his heel and disappeared into the haze of death.

Lannan would have sat there for a long while, staring after the man, but a familiar roar jolted him back to reality.

Fluffy and Koopin were fighting.

_________________________________

Present Day

"Here," GCL offered Seventh a steaming cup of tea. "I made you this."

"Thank you." Seventh sipped quietly. The warmth felt good. The tea, the armchair, the blazing fire in the fireplace...Seventh felt a sense of drowsiness slip over her. Everything seemed far away and remote. She was tired.

"What happened?" GCL asked quietly, dragging Seventh back to wakefulness. "I'm sorry if that was rude. You don't have to tell me."

"Thanks," Seventh said again. "It was stupid, is all. I was stupid."

"We all make mistakes," GCL said simply. "But we trust in Juggle to forgive them."

Seventh considered telling GCL everything. There wasn't a better person than GCL. Some said she was a bit simple, but regardless of whether or not that was true, GCL was one of those people whose very being spoke to the existence of a higher power. She seemed to have an instinctive sense of right or wrong even if she could never fully explain why she felt that way. She lived as though harboring the spirit of an angel, and it seemed Juggle itself took measures to protect her. If other people attracted danger, GCL repelled it.

Yes. Seventh decided to tell GCL everything. The tea had gotten cold by the time she finished, but Seventh didn't mind.

GCL sat in silence for a few moments longer. She had just opened her mouth to speak when a knock came at the door. Shrugging, GCL stood and walked over to the door. Seventh watched idly as she opened it.

And then sat bolt upright.

There, standing in the doorway, was Zaradi.

"GCL," he smiled. "You look lovely today."

"Thank you, Zaradi," she answered. "Please, come in."

Zaradi entered. His gaze locked onto Seventh immediately. The smile didn't falter from his lips, but his hand began inching its way into his robe.

No!" GCL said, slapping his arm. "There will be no fighting in my house."

Neither Zaradi nor Seventh relaxed, but Zaradi gradually abandoned his movements toward whatever weapon he wore.

"Very well," Zaradi said. He sat in an armchair opposite Seventh. "How are you, Seventh?"

"Well," Seventh answered shortly. She glanced at GCL, who was busy closing the door. "We had a plan to rescue kbub."

Zaradi nodded. Jonbonbon had confirmed this information already. Hearing it from Seventh allowed him to relax. She wasn't an enemy. Not immediately, anyway.

"Can I help you?" GCL asked, approaching Zaradi. "Would you like tea?"

"I'm fine, thanks," Zaradi said. "Actually, GCL, I came to talk to you about a political matter."

GCL sat between Zaradi and Seventh. "I don't really do much with politics."

"Ah, but this one I think you'll enjoy." Zaradi leaned forward. "I want you to be Daytona's Vice President."

________________________

By the time CP reached the Kingdom of DDO, he was drenched. His spirits, however, were not.

The gates were bolted. It would be a waste of firepower to try blasting through them, and they were much too tall to scale, at least, without attracting Ore_Ele's attention.

Freaking magic users.

"CP?" Pitbull still didn't refer to CP with a title. He would need correcting. "What now?"

CP bit his lip to avoid saying he didn't know. They had come this far. But he hadn't been able to send word to Zaradi to open their secret passage. So how could they get in?

"Stuck, fellas?" A voice called through the rain. CP whirled around.

Linkish stood there, playfully tossing a dagger in the air. He smiled. "I might just know a way in."
EndarkenedRationalist
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9/28/2014 7:23:06 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
A jagged streak of lightning zipped through the sky, slicing apart any air molecules in its path.

Had there been an aerial observer, a mortal capable of flight, a glance down at the Kingdom of DDO would have been an interesting experience.

Beyond the monstrous gates lay the army of Edb8. Whether the aerial observer would have laughed or not depends entirely on the person. After all, this was a rag-tag force that had just had their leader assassinated by the Lord of Trolls, Imabench. They had then, under CP's direction, marched to war with the Kingdom of DDO and now found themselves locked outside like a stray dog.

Yet they were slipping into the Kingdom, one by one, through the secret nooks and crannies known only to an assassin.

Inside the gates, the sprawling mess of the city juxtaposed order and chaos into a confusing hybrid. The rain kept most people off the streets. But it wasn't just the rain. It was the sense. Everyone knew something was coming. Today would be a day like no other. The sky itself was rapidly darkening, as if trying to hasten the day along so tomorrow could bloom like a flower in a field.

From the Pollust, Imabench, Lord of the Trolls, watched Linkish guide CP and the other Edb8ers into the Kingdom. He pulled an apple from a nearby tree and bit into it, but his gaze never wandered. Anyone close enough to observe him without being noticed - which would have been a feat unto itself - would have seen a satisfied smile resting on his face.

This observer might have asked, why? It had been Imabench who pushed Airmax to lay down the law. It had been Imabench who had been banished for it. It had been Imabench who guided CP to Edb8, and it had been Imabench who killed King Larz.

Imabench slipped out of the Pollust and slunk towards the Kingdom. Linkish may have been a skilled assassin - Imabench had, after all, saved his life - but even he didn't know all the secret ways in and out of the Kingdom.

Imabench kept smiling as he headed for his favorite entrances. The trolling that was about to go down would be...legendary.

_____________________

Airmax stood on the balcony of the Palace, overlooking the city. Yet he was no aerial observer. He sensed the wrongness too, but he did not have an objective view. Oryus weighed heavily on his conscience.

Can the ends justify the means if the end itself is corrupt?

Airmax had not thought the end was corrupt. Yet he couldn't get over the look on Oryus' face or the final words he spoke. He knew he would hear them forever.

________________

YYW ran aimlessly. Every street was a dead end, every drop of rain was blood leaking from bsh1's body. His mind retreated with every step until he was completely animal, running on instinct alone.

And instinct, of course, led him to the place it had all begun. It wasn't the Palace or the Magic Hub or even the debating ring where he had first seen bsh1. It was a place long stripped of grandeur. A quiet, one-story home with less than a handful of rooms. It had a rustic charm, perhaps, if one overlooked the years of decay and neglect. It lay in relative isolation from the city and, frankly, belonged in a Romantic novel rather than a Kingdom.

But our story resumes with Thett, whose running was futile.

________________________________

Thett had managed to make it out his front door in one piece.

The rain mixed with the tears slipping down his face. Thunder raged overhead. It wasn't half as loud as YYW had been.

Thett took slow steps. Like YYW, he too, moved on instinct alone.

Thett's feet led him to the fountain. It seemed forever ago he had thrown in a coin worth 20 ELO and made a wish. The stone angel still stood there, water trickling out of its mouth, though the rain rendered that unnecessary.

Thett's had to coax his vocal cords into producing sound.

"C...o," he managed. He swallowed several times and tried again. "C...o."

He fell to his knees by the fountain. The angel watched him impassively.

"Cryp...to."

The rain continued.

"Crypto," Thett called weakly. But Crypto was long dead, killed by Linkish's poison in Zaradi's own home.

"Zaradi," Thett tried. "Please."

His hands fell to the stone below. Normally he might have felt stupid about being on all fours. Not now.

"bsh1. YYW." Thett saw all their faces before him. Smiles. Laughter. Happiness.

"Royal."

But there was no one.

They had all left him. Or he had left them. Separated them. Or the other way around. It didn't matter now.

Thett slowly lifted his head. The stone angel stared back at him. He had to make it right. That's what mattered now.

He forced his trembling legs to stand. Then to walk. Then to run. This time, it didn't feel useless. It felt...good. The cobbled streets were slick with rainwater, but Thett ran on anyway. He had to find YYW. He had to let him know. It had almost slipped out, back at the house, but Thett had been too selfish to say it. Now he knew better.

Had he ever loved YYW? The way he loved Royal? Perhaps. Perhaps he hadn't. Perhaps it had been a delusion. A rebound. Perhaps it had been sincere. Either way, it didn't matter now.

All of the core principles holding Thett together melted away in the rain. All but one.

I have to make this right.

Thett ran around a corner and froze. The rain made it hard to see, but it looked as though there were a large group of people coming from a hole in the wall. Over the rain, he could hear voices. One of them might have pointed at him.

Then there came a sound Thett had heard before. A gunshot.
EndarkenedRationalist
Posts: 14,201
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9/28/2014 7:32:33 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 9/28/2014 7:30:56 PM, YYW wrote:
Fluffy... lol

xD Imabench's History of DDO

This was good, Endark. Better than the last, I think.

Well, thank you!

Though I suspect you're just happy to be portrayed better. :-)
YYW
Posts: 36,263
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9/28/2014 7:34:29 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 9/28/2014 7:32:33 PM, EndarkenedRationalist wrote:
At 9/28/2014 7:30:56 PM, YYW wrote:
Fluffy... lol

xD Imabench's History of DDO

This was good, Endark. Better than the last, I think.

Well, thank you!

Though I suspect you're just happy to be portrayed better. :-)

That is clearly the reason. lol
Tsar of DDO
ESocialBookworm
Posts: 14,355
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9/28/2014 7:41:43 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Oh my God... gunshot... O_O

SEVENTH, STAY STRONG HONEY!!! ONE DAY WE'LL CHOP OFF HIS BALLS!
Solonkr~
I don't care about whether an ideology is "necessary" or not,
I care about how to solve problems,
which is what everyone else should also care about.

Ken~
In essence, the world is fucked up and you can either ignore it, become cynical or bitter about it.

Me~
"BAILEY + SOLON = SAILEY
MY SHIP SAILEY MUST SAIL"

SCREW THAT SHIZ #BANNIE = BAILEY & ANNIE

P.S. Shipped Sailey before it was cannon bitches.
YYW
Posts: 36,263
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9/28/2014 7:42:31 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 9/28/2014 7:41:43 PM, ESocialBookworm wrote:
Oh my God... gunshot... O_O

SEVENTH, STAY STRONG HONEY!!! ONE DAY WE'LL CHOP OFF HIS BALLS!

That's grotesque.

You still haven't answered my question, btw.
Tsar of DDO
ESocialBookworm
Posts: 14,355
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9/28/2014 7:43:42 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 9/28/2014 7:42:31 PM, YYW wrote:
At 9/28/2014 7:41:43 PM, ESocialBookworm wrote:
Oh my God... gunshot... O_O

SEVENTH, STAY STRONG HONEY!!! ONE DAY WE'LL CHOP OFF HIS BALLS!

That's grotesque.
That's MILD, compared to what I want to do to him for hurting Sev.

You still haven't answered my question, btw.
Oh pish posh. Look at that pretty story up there. *scroll up*
Solonkr~
I don't care about whether an ideology is "necessary" or not,
I care about how to solve problems,
which is what everyone else should also care about.

Ken~
In essence, the world is fucked up and you can either ignore it, become cynical or bitter about it.

Me~
"BAILEY + SOLON = SAILEY
MY SHIP SAILEY MUST SAIL"

SCREW THAT SHIZ #BANNIE = BAILEY & ANNIE

P.S. Shipped Sailey before it was cannon bitches.
EndarkenedRationalist
Posts: 14,201
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9/28/2014 8:07:23 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 9/28/2014 7:41:43 PM, ESocialBookworm wrote:
Oh my God... gunshot... O_O

SEVENTH, STAY STRONG HONEY!!! ONE DAY WE'LL CHOP OFF HIS BALLS!

Oh, you.
imabench
Posts: 21,206
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9/28/2014 8:43:39 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 9/28/2014 7:32:33 PM, EndarkenedRationalist wrote:
At 9/28/2014 7:30:56 PM, YYW wrote:
Fluffy... lol

xD Imabench's History of DDO

One of my finer works
Kevin24018 : "He's just so mean it makes me want to ball up my fists and stamp on the ground"

7/14/16 = The Presidency Dies

DDO: THE MOVIE = http://www.debate.org...
http://www.debate.org...

VP of DDO from Dec 14th 2014 to Jan 1st 2015
Linkish1O2
Posts: 2,003
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9/29/2014 2:54:11 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
How have I missed so much!?
"I am a mystery and to unlock the mystery at my core, one must simply embrace slendermans hug with no fear."- me

"I hearby declare myself a phantom in the darkness."-me
Jonbonbon
Posts: 2,750
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9/29/2014 9:19:09 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 9/29/2014 2:54:11 AM, Linkish1O2 wrote:
How have I missed so much!?

By not reading them.
The Troll Queen.

I'm also the Troll Goddess of Reason. Sacrifices are appreciated but not necessary.

"I'm a vivacious sex fiend," SolonKR.

Go vote on one of my debates. I'm not that smart, so it'll probably be an easy decision.

Fite me m9
Adam_Godzilla
Posts: 2,487
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9/29/2014 9:31:41 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 9/28/2014 8:43:39 PM, imabench wrote:
At 9/28/2014 7:32:33 PM, EndarkenedRationalist wrote:
At 9/28/2014 7:30:56 PM, YYW wrote:
Fluffy... lol

xD Imabench's History of DDO

One of my finer works

Im reading your short story and I think that's really your finer work.

50k words in one month? Lol.
New episode of OUTSIDERS: http://www.debate.org...
Episode 4 - They walk among us
Natec
Posts: 84
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10/1/2014 7:22:46 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 9/28/2014 7:41:43 PM, ESocialBookworm wrote:
Oh my God... gunshot... O_O

SEVENTH, STAY STRONG HONEY!!! ONE DAY WE'LL CHOP OFF HIS BALLS!

Isn't that a tad bit extreme?
Dude... stop...
ESocialBookworm
Posts: 14,355
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10/2/2014 3:38:02 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/1/2014 7:22:46 PM, Natec wrote:
At 9/28/2014 7:41:43 PM, ESocialBookworm wrote:
Oh my God... gunshot... O_O

SEVENTH, STAY STRONG HONEY!!! ONE DAY WE'LL CHOP OFF HIS BALLS!

Isn't that a tad bit extreme?

First reaction- NATE!!!!! AHHH!!! DUDE STOP MAKING NEW ACCOUNTS AND STICK TO ONE!!!

Now, Nope. It ain't extreme. Romanii is a clump-nugget for cheating on Sev.
Solonkr~
I don't care about whether an ideology is "necessary" or not,
I care about how to solve problems,
which is what everyone else should also care about.

Ken~
In essence, the world is fucked up and you can either ignore it, become cynical or bitter about it.

Me~
"BAILEY + SOLON = SAILEY
MY SHIP SAILEY MUST SAIL"

SCREW THAT SHIZ #BANNIE = BAILEY & ANNIE

P.S. Shipped Sailey before it was cannon bitches.