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Combat Chaos - Story 10
D&D - Combat Chaos, Fantasy Stories of Battle

Story 10



Alexander slowly opened his eyes. Everything seemed to move in slow motion. A thick cloud of blackish smoke swirled around, nausiating him. He heard the faint, pulsing of men's voices, shouting or sobbing very quietly, as if they were miles away. He looked up at the celing, a tangle of twisted boards. He found the strength to raise his hand up to his ear and felt something slick. Pulling his hand away, he examend the warm liquid on his finger; blood. It was like some kind of hellish nightmare.

The smell of charred, crispy human flesh quickly snapped him into reality. Everything moved fast again. The scent overwhelmed him, causing him to choke and nearly loose his guts. Then the reality of the situation struck him in the face like a bucket of searing oil. He was in the barracks, and there had been a massive explosion. A fireball, perhaps. The pressure had ruptured his eardrum.

Fire raged all around him and people screamed as their flesh melted away in the searing heat. One man lay on the floor next to Alexander, clutching a crumpled leg while screaming horrifically. The bloody, jagged stump of a bone protruded from his theigh. Flames had burned off all the hair on his head and face, and his eyeballs ran like jelly down his cheeks.

Alexander jumped up on the cot he was on, frantically searching for an exit before the flames consumed him along with the barracks. The support beams whinned with tremendous strain, there weakend state would not hold the roof up for many more seconds. With a powerful pump of his legs, he leapt right through the stained glass window near his bed. The glass shattered, fragments splicing open Alexander's arms and back. He landed on the soft earth and went directly into a roll, absorbing most of the shock of the fall. The building colapsed in a heap of flames. Little sparks fluttered through the air.

He saw the other two buildings in the makeshift camp were buring as well. He was the only one left alive. Forcing himself to his feet, Alexander unslung two small crossbows from his back. Cocking each with a bolt, he held one in his left hand, one in his right. He was going to kill the men who did this.

Making a circle around the camp, Alexander could not see anyone, though there were fresh tracks in the dirt leading off into the bush. Aiming both his crossbows forward, he began to step into the green forest, then stopped, and perked his ears up. The sound was beginning to return to his ears, and he thought he heard a noise coming from the bushes ahead, but he couldnt be sure.

Without further warning, the bushes in front of him snapped open, revealing the head of an orc. Alexander had a sure shot, and released both the bolts at the ugly things head. The bolts streamed forward, striking their mark with perfect accuracy. Each bolt struck each one of the orcs eyes, tearing through the soft tissue of its brain. But something was wrong. The orc dissapeared as the bolts passed through it's head. An illusion.
Selecting a few choice curse words, Alexander knew he had been duped into fireing his bolts. He threw the two crossbows to the side and unbuckled an immense dwarven made waraxe from his back. Getting the feeling he was being watched, Alexander peered over his shoulder just enough to catch a quick flutter of movement in the corner of his eye. "You should have died in the blast, old friend." a raspy voice uttered.

Alexander knew his foe before he turned around. It was Jemedus, a mage who served with him in the army for a few years. Alexander had always been suspicious of the spellcaster, and one day found out he had been poisoning the General's food. Apparently, he had been paid to assassinate the General by the opposing army. Betrayal was a simple task for those with dark hearts. When the authorities went to arrest the mage, he made off, but not before killing a few good soldiers. A few years later, he had run into Jemedus while traveling. They broke out into a battle where the mage was defeated, but instead of killing him, Alexander let him live, dishonoring him in front of all his friends. After that, Jemedus devoted his life to tracking the man down.

"And you foul mage," spoke Alexander, "should have died many years ago." He looked around at the burning buildings. "Why did so many have to die in your mindless attack that was aimed at me?"

"It's been a long time, knight, but now I fear I have to be rid of you once and for -"

Disrupting the mages speech, Alexander leapt in the air, the intention of splitting his head in two. "For the fallen!" the knight screamed, his waraxe raised high in the air. Jemedus thrust his hand forward at the knight, reversing his decent with magic, and sending him backward in midair. He crashed heavily on the damp earth, his heavy plate mail crashing loudly. In a rage, the knight regained his ground, prepped his arm, and hurled the massive axe with all his might.

Jemedus was quick to react. His hand snapped up, he uttered a few spidery words, and wall of ice materialized in front of him. The axe struck the barrier with tremendous force, cracking it down the center, but nothing more. Alexander calmly drew a war hammer from his belt, taking it in his right hand, then unsheathed a gem studded longsword and held it in his left. Patiently he stood, waiting for the ice's duration to run out. Through the ice he could see Jemedus, preparing a spell.

After a short moment, the ice shimmered, then, totally disappeared. "MAY THE RIVERS RUN RED!" raged the knight, his battlecry fueling his attack. A white hot jet of flame sprayed forth from the mages fingers, quickly consuming the knight. In his adrenaline rush, Alexander seemed not to notice the flames. The mage turned to run, but the knight was much faster. With a swift chop of his sword, Alexander sliced the mages hand from his wrist. A splash of crimson spurted wildly with every heartbeat. Jemedus stood in total disbelief staring at his severed hand; the clean cut had no immediate pain to it. Givin a second, the pain shot up his arm, and he screamed wildly.

Alexander delighted in watching the pitiful creature writhe on the ground, clutching the bloody stump that was once his hand. The mage tried to climb up a small mound, trying to escape from this obviously much more powerful foe. Cracking his neck, the knight brought the blunt end of the war hammer down on the man's back, crushing his spine in several places. With a gasp, Jemedus arched his back, causing the juices in his spine to flow, permanently disabling his ability to walk.

Stepping on Jemedus's arm, Alexander crushed the mans hand with a sold blow from the war hammer. He knelt down beside the agonized mage, set his weapons to the side, grabbed the mans tongue, and drew a knife. "You'll never cast another spell so long as you live you son of a bitch!"

There was a scream. The knife dropped to the ground, it's blade glistening with crimson. Alexander picked up his weapons and walked off, never turning around. Jemedus had been dishonored again, but this time it was unlikely he would seek revenge.

By: Calvin Cockell

* Coat of Arms 1.2a
* Promisance
* World of Phaos 0.9.2
Is Magic Armor Lighter Than Standard Armor of the Same Type?
Yes indeed
No, never!
In 1E yes, in 2E no
Only for encumbrance
Of course it is
Not in my world
* And-Mag.com

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