Asherons Call: Death Builds Character: This is only the beginning.

While it is called the first day, the Forgotten, as these undead attackers called themselves, had been planning for a long time, and saving up weapons and armor and anything else that managed to find its way into the depths of the sewers.

The Forgotten had not meant for it to be a siege, however. Their attack was meant to be a swift blow that’d collapse Tou-Tou. Instant control! The Forgotten had not quite expected the opposition. They had obviously taken up the underestimation of the Isparians that their Dericost superiors had.

The Isparians were by no means devestated by the first attack, only the Agent of the Arcanum’s house was completely destroyed. Rili’s healing shop had a hole in it’s side facing the area the Forgotten were coming from, and so did the Blacksmith’s. All the other buildings had only minor problems, except the mage’s tower. The latter had completely escaped damage because most of the population of Tou-Tou stands there all day for seemingly no reason.

While the Tower escaped damage, the lifestone did not. The acolytes of the Forgotten had been sent to destroy it, and now the lifestone was just a pile of shattered blue shiny chips. It was assumed that the other lifestone had as well, as the Forgotten had easy access to it. No one went out that far.

Three days had passed since the first attack. The Forgotten had the upper hill at the time, and because Tou-Tou is on a peninsula it was easily sealed off from the rest of Dereth. It was like the old days of Isparian warfare now, every man and woman’s life counted; when someone died who wasn’t lifestoned at Tou-Tou, they couldn’t get back. Somehow, the same acolytes which had destroyed the lifestone had managed to seal off the portal as well, from both sides.

As for those who were lifestoned at Tou-Tou, odd things happened when they died. Only two people had died who were lifestoned at Tou-Tou, only two total. Before the shattered pieces of lifestone had been collected up, one man, a mule, had appeared where the largest section of lifestone lay and was suddenly cut into pieces, his parts flying to the other lifestone sections. Eventually he came back and wasn’t ripped to shreds, but he was too weak to help the battle.

After the pieces had been piled together, one had appeared back at the heap of chips, except he appeared dozens of times, and all of the times he appeared he was dead. Only one copy managed to survive, but he, too, was too weak to help the battle.

It was night time, and Sho was pacing along the main road running through town, viewing the cook fires warriors sat around, the perches where archers stood at the ready, the small area in the center of town where the local mules were crowded. He had become something of a leader in the past few days, while not exactly in control. When the people planned on doing something, they asked him about it, and for the most part they followed his advice.

Out of the corner of his eye, Sho caught a glimpse of Rili hiding within the crowd of mules. “Get out of there, Rili. What are you hiding from? Theres nothing to fear out here,” Sho said, not looking at the mules or even directing his voice there. He just continued walking down the street to the pub.

Rili walked up beside him, and said “What am I supposed to do?” he asked. “Run up on the front lines with the warriors and hack and slash at undead? I’m a healer, Sho, a healer!” Sho just continued walking forward, not paying attention to Rili. He walked onward passed the pub, down the street, and approached the safety border. Rili was slowing down, but he had not stopped yet.

Finally, when they were about to step beyond the area that was considered safe, Sho said “As a matter of fact I do. We need all the helping hands we can get, and if the battle is particularly fierce, the mules will join in. Let me show you something, Rili,” Sho walked on, over into hostile territory. Rili hesitated, then, after thouroughly scanning the area, he started to follow Sho.

“So you think it’s safe now, do you? That border was put up for a reason, you know.” Sho said, walking passed an innocuous looking bush. Just as Sho was passing it, he reached in and pulled out a Rat, the term used for the weak Forgotten, mostly used as scouts or decoys. They didn’t look threatening, and indeed they weren’t, what frightened Rili was the fact that he had saw no hint it was there when he scanned the area just moments before.

“I barely saw it myself, they can blend in fairly well. What will get you even more, though, is the group of shock troops there are behind that rock up there. They’ve been waiting for just the right moment. They’ve been there for only about six hours,” Sho stated matter of factly, pointing to a large rock just ahead. He pulled out his sickle and advanced at a steady pace towards the rock. Rili just stood still, staring.

“You’ll need to overcome your fear, Rili. You’re coming with me whether you like it or not. You know I like you, and you can trust me, this is not certain death I’m leading you into.”

“Imagine, at one time I treated you like the child you were…but now it seems as though our roles were reversed. I’m coming, just give me a weapon. I have some knowledge of swords…” Rili trailed off, concentrating on the rock ahead. He took the short sword Sho handed him in one hand, and crept forward slightly behind Sho.

“They’ve no doubt seen us by now, theres no way to stop it,” Sho spoke, half to himself. Suddenly five heavily armed and armored figures leapt into the dim moonlight. Sho calmly readied his sickle, and waited for the undead to come to him.

The soldiers were obviously used to seeing fear struck into whatever they caught alone, and were slightly hesitant at coming forward. How could Sho be so calm? Soon the Forgotten were upon them, and Rili found himself in a desperate fight for his life, more on defense then offense.

Sho cut off the chainmail hauberk of one Mu-Miyah and took it down with ease. The others, however, were wearing platemail over their chainmail and were not so easily brought down. Sho took his time, dodging their attacks and waiting for good openings to land his.

Things weren’t going well. Sho was starting to look worn out already and Rili had run behind a tree, exhausted. Sho had only managed to take down one more of the Mu-Miyahs, leaving three more attacking him from all sides.

Three Rats, the undead, jumped out in front of Rili. This is more my level, Rili thought, dashing forward and destroying one. The other two circled around Rili before they made a synchronized attack from both sides. Rili just fell to the ground, and the two Mu-Miyahs smashed together in the air. Maybe a little too easy.

Sho was doing worse now, having only taken down one more and now he looked incredibly exhausted. Rili decided to help out, running into the battlefield and taking a finger off one of the Mu-Miyahs. It turned, and smacked Rili to the ground with a single blow from it’s large fist.

Rili watched from the ground as another Mu-Miyah was taken down, and Sho leapt upon the last one. They both fell, Sho on top, to the ground. The undead went for Sho’s throat, Sho grabbed the Mu-Miyah’s arms. Eventually it’s arms came off, and Sho made quick work of it.

Rili, standing up to congratulate Sho, was stopped by a harsh voice from behind them. “What on Dereth are you two doing out here, especially at this time?!” Rili looked over his soldier, and saw Guard-Captain Kou looking at them both, eyes questioning. Rili still wondered if he was related to the Emporer Kou on Ispar.

“Going home,” Sho said, walking passed Kou. Rili follow him, making a nervous smile at Kou. Catching up with Sho, he asked:

“How’d you stay so calm? I was scared out of my wits!”

Sho smiled, then replied, “I was, too.” Sho’s attention was drawn from Rili to the town, where the sound of men singing was heard clearly.

“Come on,” Sho said, then he ran off into the night. Rili had conquered his fear this night, and he was now ready to join the ranks of the guards.

Recommended Videos

The Escapist is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more
related content
Read Article James Bond Continuity Is a Blessing and a Curse for No Time To Die
James Bond Continuity Is a Blessing and a Curse for No Time To Dies Daniel Craig films
Read Article Black Widow Is Stuck in the Marvel Formula Just as the Rest of Marvel Is Expanding Beyond It
Black Widow spy movie fails because of its bland neutral Marvel formula overpowering the James Bond Moonraker influence MCU Marvel Cinematic Universe
Read Article Opinion: Is Shadow of the Tomb Raider’s Mesoamerica an Homage or an Exploitation?
Related Content
Read Article James Bond Continuity Is a Blessing and a Curse for No Time To Die
James Bond Continuity Is a Blessing and a Curse for No Time To Dies Daniel Craig films
Read Article Black Widow Is Stuck in the Marvel Formula Just as the Rest of Marvel Is Expanding Beyond It
Black Widow spy movie fails because of its bland neutral Marvel formula overpowering the James Bond Moonraker influence MCU Marvel Cinematic Universe
Read Article Opinion: Is Shadow of the Tomb Raider’s Mesoamerica an Homage or an Exploitation?