Annual 2018- Race Against Time

Aetherius Saga Emblem

Previously on Aetherius Saga…

Deep in the Mystic Jungle lays a Guild dedicated to the betterment of Zeratal in trying times. The Eternals, led by Slash the Ephemeral, are a group of…unusual individuals who despite their quirks have gained a considerable amount of renown from Poluyim to the Everfrost Isles. Completing humanitarian missions, to escorts, rescues, raids, and everything in between. Today, they had a particularly trying request…

*Note: The events of this take place before Aetherius Saga Chapter 4- The Eternals

Slash the Ephemeral Silver of the Aether Lance
Tal of Jova Na’na the Healer
Dys of Elysium Shotonte the Witch
Lorand the Wanderer Wornsfeik of the Zweihänder

A month ago when Slash first accepted this request, they expected it to be difficult. The Eternals were requested by Eumenes the Scholar to investigate a disturbance along the Elysion Mountain Range south-east of Cider Village. Rumors had spread of travelers and caravans being looted. It’s people and their valuables taken into the mountains never to be seen or heard from again. Other Guilds who had been sent to investigate similarly had gone missing. Thus they turned to the Eternals. Seeing the threat; Slash came with his best members and with little difficulty found their destination. An oft-forgotten path leading into the mountains. It’d be a two days walk from here to reach the peak.

Wornsfeik of the Zweihänder took the lead. He was a Ciruseran, a massive four-armed species feared for their strength but known for their pacifism despite it. Clad in thick plated armor, he wielded a Zweihänder that totaled at 8 feet tall making it almost as tall as he was. Following behind him was Silver of the Aether Lance, an athletic Elf with pale skin and straight teal hair down to his shoulders. He wore lightweight wyvern skin armor and wielded an ornate lance which shone silver like his namesake. Though the bottom of the lance and base of the blade were ornate, the blade itself was shockingly mundane. Being a simple lance head with no special additions.

Behind them in the middle of the group stood a 10 foot tall humanoid Black Dragon clad in a heavy suit of steel armor with a massive axe strapped to his back. By his side was a dark purple furred female Trelza, a species of humanoid cats common throughout Poluyim. She wore a black bustier, black frilled sleeves with purple highlights, a matching combat skirt, and knee-high black boots. Piercing pink eyes keeping an eye on the path and the surroundings at all time. They were the husband and wife pair Dys of Elysium & Shotonte the Witch. Behind them and in the direct middle of the group was another Trelza, albeit with black fur that had emerald streaks. Most noticeable in his ponytail and on the tips of his ears. Like Sho, he was fairly thin and carried an ancient tome tightly in his right arm. He wore an open red long coat that reached down to the floor exposing his chest for all to see over jet black breeches that extended down to his knees. A brown leather belt keeping them hanging loosely off his waist and a rainbow-hued gemstone attached to a necklace finished off his look. Lorand the Wanderer was his name and despite it, he was here by the Eternals side in their time of need.

In the back was Slash himself, a pale Dhampir or Half-Vampire with straight black hair marked with streaks of blond and crimson eyes hidden behind black-rimmed glasses. He wore an elegant closed white & black spellcasters long coat that matched the black leather boots he wore. He carried a staff as tall as he was with a clear gem that appeared to be surrounded by a pair of wings at its top. Sitting on his left shoulder was the heavyset Chorsingh, Na’na the Healer. The Chorsingh were a Meerkat-like species with a prehensile tail, quills mixed in with their fur, and opposable thumbs. Her fur and quills were light brown and she wore a beautiful golden necklace. Should any ill befall their allies, these two would no doubt ensure their survival.

As they continued along the path they were met by a Trelza with smooth black fur and dark skin who appeared out of thin air. Tal of Jova was a ninja and member of the Eternal. He wore a black ninjas uniform with the exception of the torso being removed and showing his athletic frame. Full-length arm guards protected his arms and connected to his hood. Two boomerangs sat strapped to the back of his waist while two more were on each side of his hips. A red left eye and right blue eye staring intensely as the Eternals approached as he slams his right hand on the floor. Creating a cloud of smoke that transports them deep inside the mountains. There the Eternals find themselves face-to-face with a horde of Goblins several hundred members strong and a massive crimson Aether Crystal that shone brightly and ominously. The massive secret cavern aglow with the same sinister light. The goblins ecstatically dancing before the sea of corpses they lay piled as tall as a three-floor building before it.

“Okay Eternals, follow my lead!” Worns orders fearlessly. His Zweihänder at the ready. When it came to leading battles, Worns was one of their best. Had Slash not been founder and leader of the Eternals, Worns could’ve easily filled the role. With one mighty swing, Worns easily cleaves a dozen Goblins in half.

“Lumancar.” Silver casts his personal spell. White colored Aether flowing into his lance and turning it into pure white magical energy. Raising his arm skyward, he throws it like a javelin. The mystical energy coursing through the air like a bolt of lightning. Piercing through row after row of Goblin without stopping. This spell that got him the name, Aether Lance, was not one to be trifled with. A fact any who opposed the Eternals or his husband Slash would find out painfully.

“GRAHGH!!!” The Goblins howl upon realizing they were under attack. Each picking up the stolen weapons from the numerous Guildsmen who died trying to save their captives. Though weak on their own, Goblins more than made up for it in sheer numbers.

“You couldn’t have given us a heads up Tal?” Sho sighed before gathering Aether around her. Though she often came off tough and standoffish, she cared deeply for all the Eternals. As one of the older members, she often acted more as a parent than a peer.

“No time. We need to stop their spell before it’s too late.” Tal counters. He draws the boomerangs from behind his waist and throws them towards the Goblins. Tal was not the greatest of fighters, preferring stealth and indirect attacks over the direct. But when the time came, he’d stand by the Eternals fearlessly.

“Slash!” Worns calls out from the frontlines.

“Claradavar!” Slash holds his staff skyward and creates a blinding flash of light. As the leader of the Eternals, Slash made sure to protect them with his best spells. Including one that blinded enemies and gave them an opening.

“Dys!” Worns calls out once more.

“On it!” Without missing a beat, Dys leaps high into the air with his Dragoon Axe overhead. His impact creating a shockwave that kills a dozen Goblins. When it came to battle, Dys rivaled Worns strength. Though while Worns led from the front, Dys generally watched the backlines. But in cases like this…he gladly took to his fellow knight’s side. He stood next to Worns and both braced themselves as Shotonte finishes gathering Aether.

Lamiarugar Fulgur!” At long last, she unleashes her tier 3 spell. Calling forth a massive thunderstorm. It’s bolts of lightning striking and hitting with explosive enough force to leave craters in their wake.

“Good, Lorand you-“

Before Worns can give his directions, the Aether Crystal shines brightly. Crimson glyphs appearing on the Goblins and on the floor surrounding the pile of corpses. The corpses and goblins fade into ash and are absorbed by the Aether Crystal like a vacuum before stopping. Several eerily calm moments pass before it explodes, sending shards flying violently across the room accompanied by an explosive burst of wind. The combined might of Worns & Dys serving to protect those behind them.

“Clarada!” Na’na calls forth a light to heal all of the Eternals. While Slash was also capable of performing healing spells, Na’na excelled exclusively in this area. No matter the injury, she’d be able to help them recover from it. Something they required after the Aether Crystals explosion. Worns and Dys were mighty shields but there was only so much they could stop on their own.

“Get ready guys.” Worns stands strong with Dys by his side. His eyes focused on the being hidden within the smoke. A massive minotaur with glowing red veins pulsating throughout its body. Aether Crystals still firmly lodged throughout its entire body. It’s entire lower body consisting of Aether Crystals.

“By the Elementals! The Goblins were trying to summon?!” Slash stands in awe at the Goblins ability to summon and to summon such a massive creature.

“Shit, we weren’t fast enough.” Tal mutters to himself. “We need to kill it before it frees itself. If it finishes being summoned, it’ll release a sea of lava onto the highlands!” he warns the Eternals.

With a single step forward, the Crystal Minotaur shakes the ground violently. Energy surging through the floor as it breaks away. Forcing the Eternals closer to him as they remain isolated on a circular platform. Massive chasms on all sides leading to molten pools of magma. The Aether swirling through the air violently like a torrent. A crimson mist filled their lungs and gripped their hearts tightly. As if the Aether itself was fighting them. But the Eternals were a veteran Guild and pressed onward despite the pain.

Worns and Dys were the first into the fray. Holding his Zweihänder tightly and using it as a shield to block the Crystal Minotaurs fist. The impact of the blow causing him to slide backward several feet. Using the opening, Dys leaped high into the air and swing his Dragoon Axe into its shoulder. Lodging the blade inside of it and becoming stuck. His strength causing the minotaur to falter ever so slightly. Slash, Sho, and Na’na begin to gather Aether for their next spell as Silver knelt before them. Tal maintained a distance, using his boomerangs to keep slowly building up damage against the non-crystallized portions of its body. The Crystal Minotaur lets out an unholy roar, the shockwave blowing Dys off of his Dragoon Axe and pushing the group back together. The crystals in its body beginning to crack and fall off its body.

“Aldda Protar!” Lorand’s tome glows bright and summons a massive phoenix made entirely of wind. Summoning was one of the most difficult types of spells to cast and Lorand was a specialist in the art. When he stayed in one place long enough there weren’t many who could withstand him. “Go Aldara!” he orders as the Wind Phoenix flies into the air above the Crystal Minotaur. Creating a tornado around it. Each flap of its wing adding to the razor-sharp gale force wind.

Hear me o’ Aether. Lifeblood of Zeratal. Gift of the Elementals. Seven lights that guide us each day. Grant us the power to fell this creature!” Slash, Sho, & Na’na recite in perfect unison. The Aether they gathered pouring into Silver’s Aether Lance as it glows like the sun. “Zerudo Remalga!” their spell now complete. The Aether surges into Silver’s Aether Lance, combining with Lumancar. He raises his Aether Lance and throws it through the air at the Crystal Minotaur. It soared through the air and pierced through its chest like a laser. Exploding outward from its back in a massive explosion of mystical energy that shakes the mountain and causes the cavern to shake and crumble around them.

As the Crystal Golem falls backward, the Aether from its body explodes outwards. Instinctively, Tal performs several hand signs. “Kage Kyasuto!” he performs a ninjutsu art that summons 5 exact clones of him. Each grabbing one of the Eternals before disappearing into thin air just in time to escape an explosive death. All reappearing at the base of the mountain. Tal collapses from the effort of pushing such a technique to its absolute limit.

“Great work Eternals.” Slash congratulates his guildsmen full of pride. Though most would never know of this day. The Eternals saved the Highlands and the entire ecosystem of the region. The unsung heroes who saved the day with only moments to spare…

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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