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Author Topic: The Epic of Inod Kerligast  (Read 1114 times)

Frank_Horrigan

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The Epic of Inod Kerligast
« on: February 07, 2013, 07:03:56 am »

This is, as far as I can tell it, a true story. I apologize for the utter lack of screenshots, however I didn't think at any point during this tale until the very end that I'd be retelling this story. The events of this story unfolded in such a completely unpredictable way, I'd have never anticipated this.

It is a bit long, and it does have quite an exposition, but I love writing, and may have taken it a bit far.

---

Inod Kerligast had grown up in a small outpost, far away from the mountainhomes. From a young age, her father, Dodok, had taught her the importance of a steady hand, and a sharp bolt.

As a young lady, she was complimented on her marksdwarf skills, able to pluck the arrow off a deer's head from 25 yards away. She became the most well-renowned hunter of her small outpost, responsible, at least in part, for feeding the 30 hungry mouths around her. As she grew into womanhood, she felt the deep wanderlust that many dwarves do, so she bid adieu to her parents and her brothers, and headed off for the mountainhomes.

When she arrived there, she made her living demonstrating her skills to the locals, who came in droves to see Inod, "The Silver Bolt" Kerligast. Word spread, and soon she was being called for by some noble, Urist McFancyPants or somesuch. She was being sent with a migrant wave of 25 other dwarves to a relatively new outpost, Tostreg. Viseglove. Her talents with a crossbow would be useful, as they had little in the way of hunting, and were mostly fisherdwarves and planters. "I'll see to it that they soon have real meat on their plates!" came her war cry.

And so she went, travelling many miles across the plains, blinded by the overbright. Inod found that, while travelling the overbright, her skills at ambushing were greatly improved while she fed the other migrants.

They did not go hungry, and Inod was well-liked.

Soon though, she came upon Tostreg. It was a small fort, just barely large enough to accomodate her and her group. She found her quarters, and set up her few possessions. Many months passed, with very little action. Inod did not take issue with this. It was as peaceful as home. She made quick friends with a couple of the other dwarves who knew a little about hunting. Bomrek stood out as a remarkable marksdwarf, with great potential. Inod was pleased when the two of them were set up in the same squad, even if all they really did was intimidate the occasional Elven Caravan. They were all ill-equipped to face any real dangers.

This first became an issue when a werebeast was spotted near the fortress. It approached with deadly intent, but at the last moment decided to turn back into a scared, fleshy human again.

The fort resounded with laughter, and life went back to normal.

---

3 months later, a werebeast again crept from the forest. This one would not be so peaceful. The squads were dispatched, Inod as a mere recruit. The wereloris was dispatched quickly, with only one casualty: A dwarf who'd had his ear ripped from his head by the beast, who now went by the name 'Evander,' formerly known as Bomrek.

Evander's wounds were grievous, and a Thresher, Logem, was sent to bring him back to the fort. Never before had a dwarf been injured, so a hospital had never been set up. Evander was placed gently in the nearest bed. Logem leaned in as she set him down, and promised, "We will fix you."

The expedition leader had other ideas, however. Inod and the rest of her squad were stationed outside of his door for a month.
"We've learned that once bitten by a werebeast, one soon becomes a werebeast. Better to be safe." Evander went without food or drink for quite some time before it was realized that he wouldn't turn. The squad left his door, almost itching for battle.

In some sick twist of fate, a dwarf by the name of Monom decided to go into a strange anti-social mood, locking herself in the nearest Bowyer's workshop. She demanded bars, logs, gems, and bone...

Inod heard the stories of the result of this madness. A legendary crossbow, an artifact bestowed upon her fortress by Armok himself. Dumenen, "Mouthillness," was a crossbow crafted of birch, decorated with willow, bands of chestnut and gold, and boar bones. On this mighty weapon was engraved an image of the lovely queen Bembul Trumpetgills, somehow carved out of pure morion. Inod saw the weapon once, when it was brought to Evander's room. The glittering gold, juxtaposed with the bleached boar bone, and the gleaming black gems spoke deeply to her.

As the messenger opened Evander's door, a waft of stench hit Inod and everyone around her. Evander was dead. He had succumbed to an infection from his battle, and would never take Dumenen in his hands. Months passed, and Inod grew restless. She passed the time killing alligators and boar from the hills above the fort.

It was on one of these days, in the mid-days of Felsite, that she saw someone running. It was a stoneworker, who was supposed to be completing work on a road to allow the caravans easy passage. She waved to him, saw his mouth open as if to return a greeting, only for a geyser of blood to shoot from his throat.

As he fell to the ground, Inod saw the Minotaur behind him. She turned, and ran into the fortress, as quickly as her legs could carry her. As she ran, she alerted every dwarf in her path to the stockpile.

"MINOTAUR! CLOSE THE GATES!"

A fishery worker, walking towards the outside was caught unaware as the massive stone drawbridge suddenly lifted him into the air, straight into the side of Tostreg itself. The crunching of his bones echoed throughout the fortress. As the squads geared up for the assault, the recruits shifting nervously in their leather armor, Inod found what she was looking for.

As she exited the fort, Inod saw the massacre in front of her. Where the stoneworker had been setting up the bridge, the Minotaur now struck down three more dwarves. Some fool had run at him headlong, two steel short swords in his hands. The minotaur took his head off as recompense for this brazen attack. Three or four marksdwarves were at a safer range, firing the occasional bolt at the minotaur, many missing their mark entirely, and landing upon the growing pile of corpses.

Inod raised her weapon, and fired. The copper bolt that Dumenen let loose sailed forth, and grazed the minotaur's left cheek.

She had gotten rusty.

The minotaur charged Inod, and she fired again. The marksdwarves around her continued to fire at the beast. Inod saw her friend Logem running towards the minotaur, crossbow raised high over her head. Inod sighed, "Idiot." However, after she saw the two children strapped to Logem's back, she began her own headlong berserk rush at the beast.

Inod cleared the distance in record time, but was unable to stop the minotaur from batting Logem upside the head, spinning her on the spot, and knocking her out cold.

She looked on in horror as the minotaur ripped a child from her friend's back, but closed her eyes just in time to hear the sickening splitting of bone, and an abrupt end to his crying.

As Inod opened her eyes, she snapped.

She could no longer tolerate this. This beast, coming to her peaceful home, killing her friends. She charged the beast, Dumenen firing bolts into him the entire time. Three of her squadmates drew closer, attacking the creature. They did little to stop his rampage. The minotaur brought his fist crashing into Inod's chest. She felt her insides tearing apart, but stood fast, firing another bolt into the creature's foot. The beast continued its onslaught, not letting up. Inod raised her arm to shield herself from the weathering blows, but her foe shattered it as if it were glass.

Before long, Inod's leg and arm were both completely broken, her spine was badly bruised, and her right hand and foot were both useless as well. Logem could no longer stand, but fired Dumenen one last time, striking the beast in the upper body. It's foot came crashing down upon her skull, and the world went black.

Inod dreamt of flying. She was high above the world, almost... Floating. She was carried forward by some invisible force, and stopped to enjoy it.

Her enjoyment turned into white hot pain the moment she opened her eyes.

Avuz, the militia captain, was carrying her to the hospital. "If only Evander had been so lucky," muttered one part of her brain, as the rest of it screamed in agony.

She took stock of her situation. The minotaur was being chased around in front of the fortress by five marksdwarves. Blood streamed down her face from where her right ear had been ripped off. She couldn't move any of her body parts on her own, and with every step Avuz took, she shrieked. Her body was badly broken, her once pretty face smeared with her own blood, with spatters of Logem's son across her shirt. Her ear was missing, just like poor Evander's.

She was dropped onto a bed in the hospital, and faded to black once again.

---

She awoke two weeks later, to someone trying to give her water and food. She accepted it, unable to move to get it herself.
Inod looked around, and saw two other dwarves. One from the minotaur attack, and another from another werebeast attack.
The doctors busied themselves with the two other dwarves, but Inod was sure they'd be around to check on her eventually. She was a hero, after all. She had saved Logem, and her other child.

She slept that night, and awoke screaming for Evander. The doctors shot her a glare, and returned to treating the other patients.
This ritual would repeat itself for two weeks, the doctors completely ignoring Inod. First her questions, then her requests for help, then her screams. It was as if she was trapped in another world.

The doctors were in the middle of a procedure on the glassmaker, Goden, when he turned. He had been responsible for the first artifact the fortress had seen, a beautiful green glass ring.  Now, he would be responsible for the fall of Tostreg. Inod watched as Goden's form twisted into that of a werepanther.

"Fucking. Great."

The doctor suturing up his wound was knocked back against a wall. Goden turned his sight on the other patient, a milker. The twisted beast descended upon the milker, biting right through his skull, spraying his blood and brain across the entire hospital. The milker never got the chance to run.

Over the screams of the milker, Inod thought she heard the squads mobilizing. With milker-blood spattered across her face, she looked Death in the eye. The werebeast turned to her, a wicked, gleaming grin painted across its jaws. Inod thought again of Logem, who would have died helpless and cowering had she not helped. She snapped back into real life as the panther ran towards her.

With her body in piercing agony, she screamed into action. She kicked the werepanther across the hospital, far enough away to flee. At that moment, the squad burst through the door.

She flew past them into the hallway, collapsing not 10 feet from the door. She saw the swordsdwarf cut the beast's head clean off with his dual short swords. He turned around and looked at her.

It was Avuz. That bastard.

She managed to stay awake as he carried her again to the bed. Laying her down, right across from the milker's sadly deflated body, the werepanther's mutilated corpse twisted over a chest, she realized she was now the only patient.

"Maybe now I'll get some damned service," she muttered as unconsciousness took her.

---

It is heavily dramatized, but all of the events happened in the order I've written them in, and in the way I've written them. Evander did go out to slay the werebeast just as a Bowyer was entering a fey mood. Inod did get completely ignored in the hospital, and then flipped shit on were-Goden, fleeing from the hospital.

This is really the first time I've experienced any great deal of combat in-game. Most of my forts collapse terribly before anything like this gets the chance to happen.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2013, 09:37:31 am by Frank_Horrigan »
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Yuli Vlasi

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Re: The Epic of Inod Kerligast
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2013, 02:04:20 pm »

It's beautiful how this game inspires people to write stories and give things a deeper meaning. It's just ASCII, but it works perfectly with imagination. Good writing.
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