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PostPosted: Tuesday, March 29th, 2016 - 18:22:07 
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Joined: Tuesday, August 16th, 2011 - 19:08:45
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Location: Beavercreek, Ohio, USA, Planet Earth
Favorite Character(s): Fifi La Fume, Minerva Mink
Chapter 30: The Tower of Silver Artemis Mountain

Silver Artemis Mountain, as was stated before the party left, was the tallest mountain in all the Frigid-Phrygia Mountains. So it was little wonder why a long-forgotten person or group decided to build a tower on it to get it closer to the heavens. There had to had been a sophisticated ancient technology, or magic, or both, that allowed them to build it without asphyxiation from little air higher up.
The five soon walked up the trail to reach the large stone bridge—which also had steps—that spanned a gap between one portion of the mountain to the next. This would be the most direct way to the tower entrance gates.
It was midafternoon when they arrived at the foot of the trail. They braved the hard path and the cold as they ascended up the road up the large mountain.
“We’re making good headway, friends,” said Nauplius. “We’ll be reaching the tower well before sunset at this rate.”
“I’m afraid you’re about to be stopped cold,” said a gruff voice further up the trail.
The five looked up and saw what looked human before, but was a large white wolf-like beast with a thick gray-tan coat and black pants, as well as medium-gray boots. In his hand was a large glaive. His eyes glowed magenta-red with dangerous intent.
“Who are you?” demanded Galina.
“I am the Werewolf Warrior of Silver Artemis Mountain,” the beast replied. “And I will not allow you up this mountain. Master Erebus’ orders are absolute!”
The dangerous canine warrior thrusted his glaive at Valerius. It barely missed injuring him, but it did pin the sleeve of his shirt to the wall of the mountain.
“I’ve missed the taste of human flesh,” the werewolf said with a slurp.
“You won’t put the bite on my buddy!” said Nauplius as he swung his battle hammer into the beast’s stomach, knocking him back.
Rouvin pulled the glaive out of the stone, freeing his ally.
Zanthe then cast a spell to make part of the trail give way, as the werewolf was standing near the edge. The beast fell down with a thud.
But the beast wasn’t dead yet. Enraged that he had been made a fool of, the werewolf started climbing up the stone with his claws, snarling curses as he did.
Rouvin then shot an arrow that pierced the canine in between the eyes, causing him to fall backwards in pain.
Galina then cast a lightning spell which struck the arrow, finishing off the canine with a good surge.
“That takes care of that hassle,” said Valerius.
Zanthe then conjured up a small pouch, which was teleported from Emerald Kavala City. She then proceeded to sew up the hole on the sleeve. Once that was done, she transported her small pouch back to its original location.

It was about three-quarters of an hour for when they made it halfway up the trail, which one might say is very decent a speed to ascend up a mountain trail.
Soon, the stairway bridge came into view.
“Here it is!” said Nauplius. “The stair bridge to the tower.”
“All right!” cheered Valerius. “Watch out, Erebus!”
But before the team could set a foot on the bridge, a bolt of lightning from within a higher window of the tower struck the bridge, causing it to collapse.
“No!” said Galina.
“How will we get into the tower now?” moaned Rouvin.

“All is not yet lost, my friends,” reassured Nauplius. “There are some caverns that also go to the summit. We can still make it.”
“Good!” said Zanthe. “Lead us through!”
A trail near where the bridge was led down slightly, but it led into the portion of the mountain where the tower sat. Before the stair bridge was completed, the caverns were the only way to reach the summit, and therefore, the tower.
Before going into the caverns, Valerius looked once more out into the distance. Long before Erebus’ troublemaking, he himself remembered playing with Delphinia in the wintertime. Delphinia would wear an amber orange parka with jasmine colored mittens and belt, and saffron colored boots. It was as though she brought sunshine in the colder times. Her compassion was, in its own way, a source of warmth to Valerius and others.
Valerius’ attention soon turned to the task at hand, as he followed his companions into the caverns.

The caverns in Silver Artemis Mountain were filled with crystals, just as in the Crystal Caverns of Archapalaia, but these were in more ornate, intricate patterns than the ones in said island. And there were more varieties of colors. As with the previous crystal cavern, this area even had glowing crystals and glowing mushrooms to light the way.
Inside the cavern were thermal springs as well. Some were there naturally, but most were created there by magic during the early days of the tower’s construction.
In addition, there were elevator lifts in the caverns to help in the ascent. They looked old, but still well maintained.
“How could these elevators be still functional after all these years?” asked Rouvin.
A sound of rattling was heard.
“I think we’re about to find out!” said Valerius.
A couple of skeletons, most likely those who died during the construction period by one cause or another, soon rose up, wearing tattered remains of their clothes. They also picked up their pickaxes, shovels, and other tools they had during the last moments of their life, and were ready to use them as weapons.
“I say we should make it our sacred duty to return the souls to their rest,” giggled Galina.
“I’m for that!” replied Rouvin.
Zanthe cast a few spells that made the rock soft without it being super hot. This made the ground beneath the skeletons’ feet bones snare them like soft marshmallow fluff. Once they were in place, Zanthe cast another set of spells that trapped them. This made the skeletons easy targets for Valerius and Nauplius. The fight was over within seconds, but the five knew that this was just a warm-up for later encounters.

The group soon got onto the lift and carefully rode it up.
This time, there were walking dead—zombies, if you will—that approached. Since they had some semblance of flesh on them, they were more recent than the skeletons. One could guess that they were previous adventurers that pushed their luck too much and perished in the caverns. In any case, they were ready to latch onto the travelers and do harm to them.
Galina cast a few lightning bolts that burned the clothing of the walking dead, so they would burn to ashes before they could cause any damage.

The five continued through these caverns, fighting more skeletons and zombies along the way. Soon, they found an elevator lift with some light from the outside—most likely sunlight—shining through the hole.
“We’re almost at the summit!” said Nauplius.
But as they got closer to the lift, bones of a large dragon—these bones were unmistakably that of a dragon—knit themselves together, and an eerie, green-white glow surrounded them. They formed into a Ghost Dragon.
The Ghost Dragon roared in an almost eerie version of the roar it had in life. It spat out orbs of magic from its mouth, which might be a replacement of fire or whatever its breath element was when it was alive.
“Distract it as long as possible,” said Zanthe. “I’ll try to find its weakness.”
Everyone else nodded, and they soon ran about.
Valerius waved his Plasma Blade about in a mocking tone. The undead dragon roared and spat at it. The human hero swung the blade like a baseball bat and sent the shots back at it. They did not do much visible damage, but it did disorient the hulk quite well.
Nauplius went up to the dragon skeleton’s back left leg and swung his hammer at the foot bones. The beast seemed to hop in pain despite being dead. This made the five adventurers laugh a bit.
Soon, Zanthe was able to sense where the weak point was.
“Friends,” she said. “I sense the magic giving the beast un-death is in the skull. You must smash the skull!”
Rouvin shot some arrows into one of the skull’s hollow eye sockets. This allowed Nauplius to swing upwards and make the skull fly up into the ceiling, where it broke into four sections upon impact.
The rest of the skeleton body collapsed onto the ground, and the ghostly glow subsided. At last, the Ghost Dragon returned to its rest.
The party approached the elevator lift and rode up. They had made it to the summit, and it was an hour and a half before the sun began to set.
“Wow!” said Nauplius. “Even I’M impressed how much we covered in a short time.”
“Don’t get too blown away,” said Valerius. “We still need to stop Erebus.”

The five sat outside the tower entrance, resting for a few minutes and having some of their rations. Once their energy was restored, the party soon entered into the tower.
But Erebus would not be taken unawares, as he had arranged more Werewolf Warriors within. Also, there were some Mountain Orcs. These Orcs were similar to the porcine orcs of Rhudis Island, but had various tones of blue and violet for their skin, and had weaponry that reflected that element.
In fact, practically all of the monsters that the party had faced thus far were in the tower, preparing to give all they had to ensure their master succeeded in his plot.
“Sounds like we’re going to have to earn our audience with Erebus,” said Galina.
“Let’s get crackin’, Jack—and Jill!” said Nauplius.
At once, the party began to fight the monsters that guarded the way up the tower.

As the party began their ascent, Erebus stood on the top of the tower. The sun was almost starting to set, and the full moon would soon rise.
“Ha, ha, ha,” laughed Erebus. “They’ll never reach me before I have ascended to godhood!”
He soon began the foul Forbidden Ritual.
First, he took out the vial containing Delphinia’s blood and poured it on the Crystal Dragon Heart, which absorbed the blood like a sponge. Once the fluid was soaked up, it began to give off a pulsating glow, like the heart itself had sprung to life again.
Erebus then placed the heart onto a pedestal, and he took out the Glowing Lodestone and Black Steel Dagger. Aiming at just the right angles, he struck the lodestone with the dagger, causing blue-white sparks to fly into the heart, and made the heart glow lavender.
Once that was done, the evil warlock placed the Indigo Crystal, sideways, onto the Crystal Dragon Heart, and a sphere of eerie magical energy began to form above the combined artifact.
Finally, with an evil grin of triumph, Erebus placed the Crown of the Tyrant onto his head. The orb of magic then flew like a cannon shot into Erebus, and the glow surrounded his whole being. An evil transformation had begun!

The sounds of battle echoed throughout the tower, and they only momentarily quieted down when the party entered the occasional elevators to rest, heal their wounds, and get shortcuts up the floors.
Some occasions, though, they had to go down a few floors to find the correct elevator to go higher up.
“Erebus must’ve sabotaged some of the elevators,” assumed Rouvin. “He probably wants to stall for as much time as possible.”
“Well,” replied Valerius, “whatever the case, if he thinks he can stop us from stopping his plans, he’s wrong!”
“That’s the spirit, friend,” said Zanthe.
Soon, the party found the right combination of floors and elevators, which really reduced the amount of climbing they needed to do. As well as reduce the number battles they would’ve had to do otherwise.
The sun had almost completely set when the party reached the roof of the tower, and the full moon had just finished clearing above the mountains.
But when they got to the roof, they looked in horror, as the transformation of Erebus was half complete. His skin glowed a sinister aura, and his eyes glowed fiery colors of crimson, flame orange, and golden yellow. He was currently a demigod, and was not going to stop until he was fully a god.

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PostPosted: Tuesday, March 29th, 2016 - 18:22:44 
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Joined: Tuesday, August 16th, 2011 - 19:08:45
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Location: Beavercreek, Ohio, USA, Planet Earth
Favorite Character(s): Fifi La Fume, Minerva Mink
Chapter 31: Battle With the Demigod Warlock

“Welcome, fools,” said Erebus, in a dominating voice that reflected his current form. “Welcome to the end of your world, and the beginning of mine!”
“You will not get away with your crimes, Erebus!” declared Valerius.
“Oh, but I already have!” gloated the warlock. “Once I am a god, I will smite you all before ascending to the divine plane to establish my dominion!”
“That will never happen!” said Galina. Waving her staff, she whispered an incantation and sent some lightning. It went past Erebus and struck the two crystal objects off the pedestal, causing them to shatter on the roof floor.
“NO!” screamed Erebus. The transformation had been interrupted. Now he could not achieve the status of a full god. Rather, he was halfway—a demigod warlock.
Nevertheless, Erebus was furious.
“Blast you all!” he yelled. “No matter. I may not be able to achieve full god status, but I have more than enough power to mow you down!”

Nauplius raced up with his battle hammer at the ready.
“I’m going to pound you into warlock waffles!” he yelled.
“I would like to see you try!” Erebus mocked in response.
The Dwarf leapt into the air, preparing to flatten his enemy with the hammer. But the marble weapon would not come into contact with the target, as a shield of magic deflected the attacker away.
“You bore me,” scoffed Erebus as he sent a sphere of fuchsia light at the Dwarf, trapping him in a prism of crystal.
“You’ll make a great lawn ornament!” Erebus said with a cruel laugh. Then he added, “Who’s next?”

“Leave this to me,” said Galina, her staff ready, “I’ll blow this blowhard away!”
“Cute line, girlfriend,” said Erebus, “did you make that up yourself?!”
“I’m not your girlfriend, villain,” retorted Galina. “Like ANY woman would want to be yours!”
Galina spun her staff around, conjuring up a tornado and sending it at the villain. But Erebus only budged a few centimeters before swiftly spreading his hands to dissipate the whirlwind. Galina then sent out spheres of lightning at the self-made demigod, but he caught one of them with his hand and sent it back at her, knocking her out!
“Galina!” cried Valerius, Rouvin, and Zanthe.
“This is just all too easy for me!” laughed Erebus.

“Zanthe,” said Rouvin, “I have an idea! Cover me!”
Zanthe nodded and cast some nature spells. Whatever sparse dust that was on the roof soon was swept up and struck the warlock in the eyes.
“Gragh!” roared Erebus as he rubbed his eyes.
The distraction was enough for Rouvin to shoot an arrow at the Crown of the Tyrant, which fell of his head and sailed off the edge of the tower roof. They were too high up to hear, but they were certain it shattered on the ground far below.
The glow surrounding Erebus soon vanished, and his eyes were back to normal, or as normal as they could get. Erebus was now a regular warlock once more.
“You…” Erebus whispered in wrath. “You have interfered for the last time!”
Erebus motioned with his hands and summoned some greenish blue fireballs that sailed towards both elves, knocking them backwards. They were still semi-conscious, but the pain was great.
It was now just between Valerius and Erebus now. Valerius soon got out his Plasma Blade. The fate of Olympalantis, as well as the entire known world, now hung in the balance.

Valerius soon ran up, dodging every magic projectile Erebus shot at him, and began striking various blows with his Plasma Blade. All the trouble the warlock caused, from kidnapping his beloved Delphinia, to slaying his loved emperor, filled Valerius with an uncontrollable rage. The hero was determined to ensure Erebus Tonadi faced justice, one way or another.
But Erebus, despite the wounds, was determined that his rival fell to his magical might first. Some spells were wide enough to knock Valerius back. However, Valerius, when he was able to see after a flash of some spells faded, noticed something as well.
The blows he and his friends landed seemed to knock Erebus back as well. How Erebus didn’t notice this is anyone’s guess. But this gave Valerius an edge—all he had to do is persist in his attack, and victory would be his.
“Fool!” mocked Erebus. “Can you not see that you are only delaying your inevitable death? Why not just give up?”
“Because,” answered Valerius, “I have a cause worth fighting for. For Olympalantis, and for my beloved Delphinia! And besides…”
“Besides what?” asked Erebus.
“Besides,” said Valerius, “you don’t seem to noticed that you’re running out of luck… or at least out of a place to stand.”
Erebus soon cast one last spell—a large red sphere of magic. But Valerius leapt into the air and delivered one last thrust. Not only did this badly wound the warlock—it pierced him just below the heart—but it was the final blow that knocked him backwards! The evildoer screamed as he plummeted to his doom. At last, the war with the Warlock, Erebus Tonadi, was over. Olympalantis was saved.

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"Advice is free, Alexander. Making use of it costs much more!" --Ali the bookshop owner, from King's Quest VI: Heir Today, Gone Tomorrow

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PostPosted: Tuesday, March 29th, 2016 - 18:23:09 
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Favorite Character(s): Fifi La Fume, Minerva Mink
Epilogue: Olympalantis Recovers

The crystal surrounding Nauplius melted away harmlessly.
Likewise, Galina stirred from her unconsciousness.
“W-where am I?” moaned Galina.
“What did we miss?” asked Nauplius.
“The fight is over,” said Valerius with a content sigh. “Erebus Tonadi is no more.”
“I’m glad for that,” said Rouvin. “Now Olympalantis can heal from the damage he did to it.
The early evening sky glistened with whatever stars could be allowed despite the full moon’s glow.

“I think it’s time for us to return to our homes,” said Zanthe.
“Well, I should go back to Olympalantis and see how Delphinia is doing,” said Valerius.
Galina said, “Zanthe, let us combine our magics!”
Zanthe knew what it was, as she recalled a spell of combining magical energies to summon aid.
The two elf women combined their staves and sent out a beam of light. A minute later, a very large white bird flew to them and sat down. The five soon got on the bird, the bird gracefully flew off the tower.
The first place the bird flew to was just outside Gray Corfu, and Nauplius got off, waved farewell, and returned to his own cottage—he’d wait till the next day to proclaim the victory.
Next was the city of Olympalantis, or just outside it but near an inn. Valerius thanked the mount for giving him a ride back. He then went to an inn—the night was still young so the place was still open. He got a room, so he could sleep and then visit Delphinia the next day.
Rouvin and Zanthe soon were dropped off outside Emerald Kavala City. They thanked Galina for helping them, and then went to their respective homes for the night.
Finally, Galina rode the bird back to her home town of New Nimbaxos.
“Thank you, friend,” she said to the giant bird before it flew off. She then went to her home to rest.

The next day, Valerius soon visited Delphinia, and her wound had healed quite admirably.
“Valerius!” she said in surprise.
“Yes, my beloved Delphinia,” Valerius replied. “The nightmare is over! Erebus is dead!”
The two hugged for the first time in a while, and enjoyed a deep, loving kiss to celebrate the good times that had returned.
During the party’s absence, Theodorus Constintinus had been crowned the new emperor. He too visited Delphinia’s place to thank Valerius and his friends—albeit in absentia—for their good work.

The Dwarf inhabitants of Gray Corfu cheered upon seeing their hero Nauplius.
King Granadanano also clapped his hands in joy.
“Well done, Nauplius Sideras,” said the Dwarf King.
“I was not alone, your greatness,” said Nauplius. “I was part of a team that succeeded together.”
“Yes, yes,” chuckled the king, “but you willingly joined it. And because of your courage and skills, the entire party succeeded, and all of the land is safe.”
“Thank you, your Majesty,” said Nauplius.
“I was wondering,” continued the king. “How would you like to be my Chief Royal Metalsmith? Not only are you good in combat, but you have great smithing skills and an eye for detail. I am certain many smiths, expert and apprentice alike, can learn from your experience.”
“I am honored, sire,” Nauplius chuckled.
The crowd cheered even more. Soon, Gray Corfu would have even more bragging rights, as a hero and an experienced smith would lead them to a brighter future.

New Nimbaxos also celebrated the return of Galina, as they also knew that she contributed to the victory that saved the Olympalantis Empire.
“I,” started Galina, “I don’t know what to say.”
She wiped a tear from her eye.
“Please,” said one townsperson, “you’ve got to tell us some of the adventures.”
She was glad to do so.
As a matter of fact, a few years later, in the next election, Galina Thyella became the newly elected governor of Nimbaxos Island. She was the first magical governor in four hundred years.

A celebration was held in the city of Emerald Kavala.
Even Demeter created a tangible form of herself to partake in the festivities.
Songs, dances, and various games made up the festivities, as well as much food and drink—alcoholic and non-alcoholic—was served.
Soon, Demeter herself spoke.
“Rouvin Koukounari has an announcement,” the goddess said.
The crowd was silent to hear.
Both Rouvin and Zanthe smiled, as Rouvin cleared his throat to speak.
“Zanthe Sfendami and I are engaged!” he said.
The crowd cheered upon the announcement. Soon, two of the heroes who thwarted Erebus would be wed.
But… it would not be the only nuptial celebration.

A year and a half after the victory, a ceremony was held in the heart of Olympalantis, just outside the Pantheon.
It was the wedding of Valerius and Delphinia.
Delphinia, in her bridal best soon stepped forward to the awaiting Valerius, dressed as the best groom in Olympalantis.
Even Emperor Theodorus Constintinus was a guest of honor at the ceremony. He would be the one to give the toast at the reception.
Valerius’ mother Magaera shed some tears of joy.
“Oh,” whispered Magaera softly, “if only his father could witness this day.”

The empire of Olympalantis had been through and seen much. What started out as the 700th anniversary of the empire’s founding became one crazed adventure that resulting in a battle that determined the future of the known world. But it was all worth it.

The End

_________________
"Advice is free, Alexander. Making use of it costs much more!" --Ali the bookshop owner, from King's Quest VI: Heir Today, Gone Tomorrow

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PostPosted: Tuesday, March 29th, 2016 - 18:25:11 
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Joined: Tuesday, August 16th, 2011 - 19:08:45
Posts: 345
Location: Beavercreek, Ohio, USA, Planet Earth
Favorite Character(s): Fifi La Fume, Minerva Mink
So that's my story, The Tower of Silver Artemis Mountain.

If any are interested, my friend and I have a Tumblr that is kind of a continuation of the story, with even more characters added to the mix.

The official Tower of Silver Artemis Mountain Tumblr

_________________
"Advice is free, Alexander. Making use of it costs much more!" --Ali the bookshop owner, from King's Quest VI: Heir Today, Gone Tomorrow

Maverick Hunter D-Boy at your service!

All Hail Shadow! Heroes rise again! Obliterating everything that's not your friend!

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