No Road Back Home, part 1The girl's silvery armor looked out of place on the unkempt road. Though she saw, through the light mist, that the badlands and dark forest were behind her, she did not feel at ease as she approached the pastoral fields and homely farms that bordered her destination. There was no traffic on the road. She knew well that the town ahead didn't expect many visitors these days, especially not from the southwest.
The town of Canterwall and its attached lands were some of the most bountiful in the country. The land's fertility was both a blessing and a curse. Its bounty brought riches and a good life in exchange for hard, honest work. The curse was the land's location, being the westernmost province of Ustalav. To the west, the badlands of the Belkzen spewed forth bandits and orcs who pillaged and looted. It was for this reason that every citizen was also a local militiamen and held weapons at home. To the south lay the cursed lands of Vyrlich, where the evil taint of the Whispering Tyrant co
Full Steam, chapter 1Full Steam, chapter 14 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
Marguerite Butler burst into the Hotel's Saloon. She ignored the angry comments of a man she accidentally pushed to the side and looked around desperately for a hiding place. There was none, at least none that she could reach before they caught up with her. Marguerite turned around, watching the swinging doors she had just crossed, half in fear half in defiance, and took from underneath her dress's bodice a heavy wad of bills.
-"I need to reach Boston in less than a week! There will be five thousand dollars for those who help me get there within that time... two thousand now, the rest when we reach Boston!" she said in a high-pitched and desperate voice.
A group of men began to stand, greed in their eyes, but as one they sat back down, their faces pale with fear as the doors opened and let in a handsome man. He was dressed in a white and expensive leather suit with silver ornaments; his light blond hair was covered by an immaculate white hat. He was soon followed by a group of unsavory
No Road Back Home, part 2Jordan Fenix.No Road Back Home, part 24 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
The name hit a nerve.
How could Norn Hannah Kappel not recognize one of her children, one of the girls she helped bring into the world? Now she could see it clearly. Jordan's features: her emerald eyes and pale skin. They were those of her mother, just finer due to her elven blood. Whereas her mother had been possessed of long, red hair, Jordan had shorter black hair. Nevertheless, she was her mother's daughter; she had the same soft smile. Her ears were pointed and her eyes deep and full of purpose just like her father. She was the same height as her mother, just a bit taller than Hannah herself, but she was athletic and fit for combat.
The Norn lowered her face and took the girl's hands on her own. "Child, forgive them! I am sorry my dear child, I didn't know."
Jordan looked a bit embarrassed. "It's fine Norn. I understand the people in the region have suffered. I can't really blame them."
"And yet you do, don't you?" Hannah's voice was but a whisper, her eyes still dow
Winter's SongWinter's Song5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Five years have passed since you died. How could I forget it when it happened on Christmas Eve. We were at a party at your folk's old cabin, a dark and lonely place in the middle of the mountains.
Every year I think I am ready to move on, but every Christmas Eve I hear that song in the air and it's as if I could hear your voice still calling to me. Of course it can't be you you are dead. We never found your body, yet even when you went missing, I was sure I could hear your voice calling out to me.
That was the first time I heard the song too, and it should have been the last. I heard you singing while playing your violin. It was a sad song. It was about white mountains and cold plains, desperation and solitude, a warm flame keeping you alive as it's extinguished by melting snow. It spoke of voices in the blizzard and spirits in the mountains. I never liked how you played the violin, your songs always made me sad. But this time I felt longing in my heart, the same feeli
J01: Decisions of FaithJordan watched the city's gate from her window, her body pushed close to the wall. It was the third time she had done so that day. Another group of soldiers and displaced farmers was returning from the fierce battles with the orcs. As always the temple's priests attended the wounded and helped the others while Jordan observed in secret.J01: Decisions of Faith5 years ago in Fantasy More Like This
The girl returned to her desk and studies. The vortex of expectations, regrets and righteousness mixing in her heart left Jordan's mouth with a bittersweet taste.
Before she could concentrate again on her studies, someone knocked on her door. She stared at the wood anxiously, filled with excitement and expectation. She breathed deeply and prayed to Iomedae for patience and calmness, just as she did yesterday, and the day before that.
-Myrna, please come in.
A smiling, golden haired girl opened the door. She was wearing a silver tunic with a golden sword and cross of Iomedae embroidered on her chest, identical to the one worn by Jordan, excep
Life in Korvosa, part 1Life in Korvosa, part 15 years ago in Fantasy More Like This
The pain was unbearable.
An agonizing wait filled the space between each new drop falling - my face became a burning sea, each new drop a wave of fire. Held in eternity, I waited for the next wave, dreading that fire, but it never came. Instead, scared and angry screams replaced the laughter to which I had become far too accustomed.
The soft familiar sound of leather boots became too slowly distant and the clamor of steel followed. A metal arm grabbed at me. I made myself small; I tried to move away. But the arm grabbed me anyway. Then I heard the voice and stopped struggling. "By the Vault's Perfect Key, what did those animals do to you?"
The hard soil was gone; instead arms of icy steel cradled me.
The pain was unbearable, but that was good... it meant I would live.
Natalia leaned against a store wall, silent and calm except for her left hand. In it she held a cruel looking switchblade which she flipped open, habitually, every so often in a casual automatic movement requ