Preparing for war
May 22, 2018 at 7:44 am #28107Cú ChulainnParticipant
The Celt had used the portal coin to make his way from twine, firstly to the roundhouse that was his home in Persistence. he was mildly bitter that the island state had chosen to opt out of this battle because in his experience, one nation dropping after the other only led to an illusion of neutrality- after all, bad things happened because good people stood aside and did nothing- and this Giovanni tosspot seemed to be cutting swathes through the independent states of Helliyno.
The barbarian warrior took from his roundhouse only two items. A bronze torc of entwined bands that he wore about his not inconsiderable bicep- the sigil of his Captaincy of the warriors of the Red Branch. Also something that he didn’t think he would ever be using again. A round shield, of leather and wood that had been coloured white and stiffened with lime. Upon it, emblazoned in bright red- the silhouette of a hound, head thrown back and howling to the sky. It was his shield- the shield of the Hound of Ulster.
In the blink of an eye, he was away from Hellifyno and travelling through space and time til he reappeared in a flash of light in the middle of a great roundhouse- five times the size of his own and big enough to enclose the bodies of the Warriors of the Red Branch. It would appear most of them were present this very moment.
“CU!!!!” the call goes out as his old friend Ferdiad is the first to recognise him. Soon he was surrounded by his old friends and comrades and once the back slapping has subsided and the situation in Hellifyno explained there was naught but silence for a moment.
“There will be no glory. There will be no songs sung of your deaths in Mother Ulster” explains the warrior, Cu Chulainn. “Your demise will go unnoticed. There will not even be any spoil” making sure that they understood what they were agreeing to.
“Why the feck go then?” calls a voice from the back of the crowd.
Cu Chulainn grins broadly.
“For the feckin’ craic!” he roars. “For the exercise! Because it’s against a bunch o’ wee bloodsucking bastards” knowing how the Celts all hated bloody vampires.
The sound of voices washed like an ocean wave about the crowd, building in volume as one by one, the warriors joined their vocal assent until it was a gigantic roar. Swords were drawn and thrust high into the air. Others were beaten upon shields that became as loud as the beating of battle drums. Whistles made from the finger bones of their enemies joined the cacophony.
A portal opened up before them and Cu Chulainn waited until the noise had died down until his voice created a booming roar over all others.
“Who the feck is with me??” and with that, they surged forward. The Warriors of the Red Branch were going interplanetary.
On the other side of that portal, in the magical world of Paracosm, a stream of warriors passed through. Spears twice the height of a human male bristled in each hand. The howl of mastiffs and wolfhounds, resplendent in leather spiked collars and held at the neck by their many handlers were heard to echo across the land. Psychotic screaming of Gaelic battle cries as the warriors whipped themselves into a fury joined them in a discordant choir.
Last to arrive, the four hundred horse that was the cavalry of the Red Branch. Destriers that were trained in the charge and to paw at the heads of any attacking enemy with hooves that were shod with sharpened iron shoes. The last, the smiling face of Cu Chulainn’s old friend- Ferdiad. The wee darkly coloured man, as with the others, bare chested and painted in the brilliant blue of wode and the intricate dark etchings of tattoos. His warrior locks were starting to grow back and were stick out behind his head in a waxed bristle. He, as with all the others, had taken the dreadlocks from their head when Cu Chulainn had been exiled from the clan.
In his hand, wrapped tightly in many skins and bound with cords, something that appeared as a spear. Cu Chulainn’s eye’s widened when he saw his brother holding such a thing.
“Is that what I think it is?” exclaims the hero of Ulster, a grin spreading across his face.
“Aye!” returns his beloved brother in arms passing it to Cu Chulainn who takes it almost reverentially in both hands. “Thought ye could use it given what is to come.”
Getting over his shock quickly, he stands the wrapped gift upon it’s end and slaps a hand upon Ferdiad’s shoulder, a squeeze to show it was appreciated, but the glimmer of moisture in Cu Chulainn’s pale hued eyes was enough thanks. A nod, but speechless he remained until…
“Get them dug in and supplied. Look to the Queen of this land, Magicia and her companion, Fwuf for direction.”
“Not staying long then Cu?” asks Ferdiad after giving a nod.
“Oh, I’ll be back!” he says closing up the portal before opening another, a broad grin and that ever present gleam of mischief. It was all Ferdiad needed and holding up his hands- say no more, he responds.
“Oh aye, brother- leave it to me. We’ll have it all done by yer return.”
Cu Chulainn’s heart almost bursts with pride as he looks about him and sees the horde of Ulster once more gathered about their leader and preparing for war. He leans in, hugs his brother and lays a kiss upon both cheeks. “Grand t’see yer again” and with that he was gone leaving Ferdiad to marshall the troops and ready the defenses.
May 22, 2018 at 4:37 pm #28114Fwufikins, the Maids™Participant
As the men marched, they might feel the eyes of native carnivores on their backs… But in this time of turmoil, the magical animals of Paracosm seemed hardwired with the protection of their homeland in mind, as if a primal part of their being knew that they owed their existence to Magicia and her ilk. Odd strange that huge cats with crystalline sabre teeth and diamond-scaled proto-dragons would have any sense of patriotism, but nonetheless they let the army pass into the city unabated.
The hub city of Paracosm was all but deserted, with most non-essential civilians having been evacuated to palces of lower strategic value, out of sight of the enemy. Many brave souls, however, had taken up arms, and hailed the arrival of the new fighting force with boistrous cheers!
Most of what the warrior clan would find however were the Fwufs, that omnipresent clade of maids that have served Magicia for enumerable generations. The palor of their skin and the sickening red color of their eyes would easily betray their undead nature, but these were clearly no ordinary animated corpses. Each was identical, both in mannerisms and appearance. And while their unity and cognitive level put them above zombies, they weren’t quite bright enough to compare to a vampire in terms of intelligence.
Thankfully for the maids (and unfortunately for their enemies) they were unmatched in terms of teeth. One might see a maid yawn and marvel at the sheer scope of their dentition. Their teeth -each up to 10 centimeters long, serrated and thick with a backwards curving profile- we’re so numerus that it looked as though their jaws shouldn’t be able to contain them. Rows of fangs formed weird patterns, their impossible geometry disintering the madness that led to their existence.
Despite their horrific nature, however, the Fwufs are quick to recognize an opportunity for hospitality. The maids make high pitched fweeping noises, a friendly greeting. Of course many of them simply shout the word fweep, the onomatopoeia apparently easier for their brains to handle than the actual sound.
Among them was a single maid that stood out from the monotonous horde. This one stood head and shoulders above the rest, their burgundy hair longer and better maintained. Their scarlet eyes glowed almost incandescently as they approached the band of warriors. This was the Queen Fwuf, the Head Maid of the Hive Mind, and personal servant of Magicia. Their naturally black lips curled into a smirk as they bowed to the new arrivals. Unlike the lesser maidlings, Fwuf was eloquent in their speech.
“Greetings. Welcome to the land of Mistress Madooga, warriors. I’d ask why you’re here, but we think that we know. Why else would one come to Paracosm in a time of need?”
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