Monday, April 16, 2012

The Chronoscope
Ian Bass


Chekai the bastard woke up early in the morning to the pleasant salty air of the Harbor. He turned to arouse his companions Haulen the rogue, Whyskay the sorcerer, Empathia the cleric, and Golgar the Belligerent. Today they were headed to the marketplace to look for better wares, seeing as how most of their stuff was broken or permanently damaged with during the battle with Captain Yar-yar’s pirate crew in the Irestone Inlet.
Chapter One

They all rose ready to begin the day, but none more eager than Chekai. He had never been to the Market, let alone crowded places were no fights broke out. He was the son of the devil Sulomades, and was infused with the spirit of power and rage, so it wasn’t uncommon for him to start fights for his own amusement.
Haulen knew that the pockets of the merchants would be lined with gold and precious gems ripe for the taking, and Whyskay had to threaten him once or twice with his staff before he got the message. Golgar had walked ahead with Chekai, both reveling in stories of battles and brawls long since passed. Empathia was the last to catch up counting supplies and discussing the need of materials to Whyskay.
As they walked through the gate to the Market Chekai gasped in surprise. He had never seen such a large place with vendors for everything under the sky, there were weapon vendors, food vendors, people trying to sell potions that would give you the strength of a bull and the wisdom of an owl. There was even a stall with precious gems to which Haulen took special note of.
“There used to be a giant tent right in the middle,” said Empathia, “well until the Devil Invasion that is.”
“Devils?!?” exclaimed Chekai, “Can we fight any?”
“They are long gone by now,” said Empathia.
“Oh,” Chekai said with obvious disappointment.
“Cheer up mate,” Haulen said in his usual cheerful tone, “how ‘bout we get ya a shiny new axe.”
Chekai looked up with a big grin. He may have only been twelve but he was already the strongest of the group and his weapon of choice was a massive great axe strapped to his back. The promise of a new and better one was almost more than he could handle. He ran towards the weapon vendor his heart soaring at the thought when something caught his eye.
There was an acrobat balancing on a long staff. Chekai amazed at the man’s dexterity and balance as he flipped and stood on one foot on it. He stood transfixed on the man when he noticed that something was off. Two cloaked figures approached the acrobat and Chekai went on high alert. He grabbed the axe on his back and flicked off the strap holding it in place. As the men called the acrobat over Chekai notice a jeweled hilt of a dagger in one of their cloaks. As the acrobat drew closer the man reached for it and Chekai rushed into action.
He rushed into the pair shouldering the one with the dagger and pulling his axe down to parry the blow of the long sword the other had pulled from his cloak. The swordsman smiled with yellow teeth facing this challenger. They were both evaluating each other, determining that neither was a novice and both had exceptional skills in the weapon they carried. The swordsman guessed that he would be faster if he attacked. As he changed his stance ready to thrust he felt a prick of a dagger in his back.
Haulen rose up from behind him grabbing him around the chest and making a point with the dagger. “I think you might have messed with the wrong people here lad.” He said with a laugh in his voice.
“No sir, it is you who have messed with the wrong people as you stated,” the man said with a grin. “I am one of the esteemed members of the Sharn Syndicate, and you have interfered with our business. Now I demand you release me and let us carry on our job.”
“And what exactly is your job may I ask,” said Chekai.
The man turned and looked at Chekai death in his glare. In an amused voice he said “my job is to collect rent. And this man is way overdue on his, so we are going to teach him to pay on time.”
“Better idea,” said Chekai, “I will have a duel with you. If I win you live this man alone, if you should win then I will pay double the rent he owes.”
This intrigued the swordsman. He was not actually in the Sharn Syndicate nor was he collecting rent he was a thug and he decided he could make the pretty penny if he could win this duel. But on the other hand this man before him was large and menacing, the large axe he carried with him didn’t help to lessen that fact. Then an idea came to him.
“All right,” he said, “I’ll duel you, but I’m not fighting that big thing you’re carrying around it’ll break my poor sword.”
“Fair enough, Haulen give me that spare dagger you have.” Chekai said started to get amused.
“Come now boy,” Haulen said handing him the dagger, “where on Ebberon are your senses.”
Chekai smiled as he took the dagger, “They are in my head my friend.”
It was that moment the swordsman attacked lunging at Chekai with all his might, hoping to catch him off guard. But what he didn’t realize that the playful banter between the two comrades was actually a warning. Chekai side stepped and cracked the man in the back of the skull with the pommel. The man faltered and Chekai took advantage; he kicked out the back of his knees disarmed him and grabbed the sword holding it to the man’s throat.
The laughing startled Chekai, who turned around to see Golgar and the others applauding his skill. He smiled as his friend put his hand on his shoulder in congratulations. The others smiled and laughed at the poor man’s misfortune. The acrobat sighed with relief as he saw his tormentor on the ground.
Chekai turned back to look at the man, “So we shall abide by our agreement right, or do I need to finish it.”
“Y-y-yes, I’ll abide by the terms,” the man said fear in his eyes.
Chekai started to help him back up but the man had one more trick up his sleeve. As soon as he got his balance he grabbed the dagger at his side, meaning to plunge it deep into Chekai’s side. His plan was all for naught thou for as soon as he cleared the daggers sheathe his own sword found its way out of his body. He looked into the man’s eyes only to find blackness.
As Chekai spoke multiple voices joined his but they came from only one source, “You, Zatalis, oh yes I know you. You are a murderer, a liar, a cheat, a thief, a child killer and woman defiler and you have a special seat saved for you in hell. Your soul is mine.”
As Zatalis the Swordsman listened to the words his voice caught in his throat. The terror in his eyes told his fears but the black eyed one before him gave him no remorse. He turned as pale as a ghost as his soul was drained from him, his eyes going lifeless but still with fear on his face. The black-eyed Chekai turned back to his comrades and the many voices spoke to them.
“You will guard this child with your lives. Should he die before his mission is complete your souls will forever belong to me and they will suffer in the deepest darkest pits of hell. Do you understand me? Yes? Good now go and do not force my return, or you will regret it.”
The black eyes returned to their normal dark brown and returned to their original size. Chekai’s familiar smile returned and he looked at the dagger now free of a body as it lay lifeless on the ground. He shrugged and handed the dagger back to Haulen retrieving his axe. He looked into the questioning eyes of his companions.
“What’s the matter, it looks like you’ve just seen a ghost. Man that fight took more than I expected lets go get something to eat.” He smiled then turned towards the Rusty Nail Inn his thoughts turning towards hot meat and cold ale.

Chapter 2

Chekai sat and threw a grin at the bar maid that brought him a grilled turkey leg and a dark muddy looking drink called a Dirty Kobold. She smiled back and told him to call her if he needed anything else. Golgar laughed something about her flirting with him and Chekai just shrugged.
Empathia looked across the table at Chekai studying him like an insect. Chekai was to intent on his lunch to care, all he knew was he was hungry and there was meat in front of him. Haulen and Whyskay were discussing the event in a back room, thou no one took note of their disappearance as it was a regular event. As Chekai was tearing into his food a man approached the table. Golgar noticed and placed his hand on his battle axe. The man walked slowly but with dignity
“Are you Chekai, the one who saved the acrobat in the market place?” He said his voice old and gentle.
Chekai his mouth full swallowed and smiled. “That I am and what can I do for you my good sir?”
“Well I have a job if you choose to take it.” The old man said his eyes gentle and pleading.
“Any jobs you ask of me must be put through Empathia first, she is the leader of our group and I will follow her decisions to the letter.”
Empathia looked up at the man and studied the man. He looked to be in his late 60s but also wealthy. His features soft and wrinkled, he had the stature of an important man. He was dressed in fine robes of silk and carried an ornament jewel handled knife. Empathia judged him to be kind and trustworthy so she began to talk.
“What kind of job is this, and what sort of pay are we looking at?”
“Well I’m not as rich as I once was.” The old man said, “But I have trinkets from my youth I would be happy to pay you with. They are in fact quite valuable.”
“Valuables? I like shiny things especially when they are worth more shiny things.” Haulen said from behind the old man his grin showing obviously in the shadows.
The old man almost died of shock. Haulen had the unnatural ability to sneak upon anyone no matter how full a room. Some say he was blessed by the gods he worshipped, but Empathia had a sneaking suspicion it was that faint outline of the cloak on his back. But Haulen was not the only one interested in the promised loot. Chekai looked up with a shimmer in his eyes.

“We’ll do it,” Empathia said, “But I need more details on what we are agreeing to.”
“Body guards,” The man declared, “You will act as body guards for my remaining child Nell. She is searching for her brother, Nat, in the Devil Invasion.”
“And your crazy,” Empathia said. “The Devil Invasion was over twenty years ago.”
“Tell me, have you ever heard of The Chronoscope.” The old man asked with a tired voice.
“It is a relic that was developed by the giants thousands of years ago. It was recently excavated on the out skirts of Gianthold. It was said that the giants used it to transport their massive armies across Ebberon,” Whyskay said from across the room.
“Correct my good sir. Nell has hired an expedition crew to go to the Chronoscope, but I fear for her safety. The man in charge, a man named Tremas, just strikes me as off. I do not trust my daughter’s safety to that man, so please will you accompany her?”
“We will,” Chekai said without hesitation, “We’ll protect her no matter what.”
“Ugh there he goes again honor and duty before all and that such nonsense,” said Haulen to Whyskay.
“But you have to admire that about him. He will make a great man one day, hopefully,” Whyskay replied.
The preparations where set up immediately the airship chartered and the supplies gathered. Their mission was underway before the afternoon had passed, with Chekai excited as always.

Chapter 3

The ship arrived at a desolate place, and was quite literally a floating island. It had been this way for millennia as far as anyone could tell with no reason to it. In the middle past the rows of tents and crates of supplies stood a massive structure. It was crystalline with rotating circles of what appeared to be glass. It had a blue and purple tint to it.
Chekai was of course the first one off of the airship. He walked about two feet before running headfirst into a black warforged. Warforged were created for The Last War. They are automatons with emotions and severe loyalty. They are almost 7feet tall and make supreme warriors, the consciousness of those that died on the battle field were almost always transferred into these robots.
“Ah, I see you have arrived Ms. Gann is awaiting you,” said the robot. “My name is Recton, and I will be of service to you anyway I can.”
“Wow, you are a big one aren’t you,” Chekai exclaimed in shock. He had never seen a warforged before and now understood why they were to be feared. This one was almost as tall as Chekai, at six foot 7. He carried a massive sword in one hand and a tower shield in the other. There were no emotions on his face at all but his voice sounded cheery.
“You must be the one we’ve heard much about. You are Chekai are you not?”
“I am does that surprise you?”
“No but I am astonished at how young you are.”
“How young do you assume I am,” Chekai said with amusement.
“Your actions and the way you talk declare you to be younger than you look I assume you are 10-15,” The warforged declared confidently.
“Hmm you’re good. I am twelve how old are you my new friend.”
“I am one hundred and fifty-eight, I fought in the last war, blood and glory was all that I sought. Now I serve the Ganns.”
“Wow…” Chekai said in astonishment and started to head to the ruin continuing his talk with the robot.
“He makes friends everywhere doesn’t he?”
“It only makes sense Emp, I mean he has such a charming personality it’s hard to imagine not being his friend,” said Golgar with a grin.
They walked into the glass like dome; many of the excavators lined the wall admiring their hard work. In the center stood a girl and old man and a monster that looked like a squid was stuck on his face.
“Is that what I think it is?” Haulen asked Whyskay.
“If you’re thinking Mind Flayer, then ye s.”
The girl looked behind her to see the group walking up the ramp. Chekai headed them laughing and chatting away with the group. Golgar was right beside him chuckling. Empathia came next examining what seemed like every inch. Haulen and Whyskay continued to talk about the Mind Flayer. Nell walked up to them and smiled at the large warrior with the giant axe.
“Welcome!” she said enthusiastically, “you must be the adventurers my father sent.”
“That we are,” Golgar said with a grin. She looked coldly at him.
She turned back to Chekai the smile returning her warm features, “With you around I doubt I’ll have much to worry about. Now then shall we begin?”

Chapter 4

Nell approached the Mind Flayer in the center of the room. It raised its hand and spoke in a gurgling voice.
“All right Ms. Gann, picture the last time you saw your brother.”
“It was during the Devil Invasion, we were running and then in the chaos we got separated. Oh Nat, where are you?”
“MS.GANN SOMETHINGS HAPPENING!!” cried the Warforged.
“AT LAST!” shouted Professor Tremas.
In a moment a portal opened and the professor and the Gann party vanished. A Large green being appeared, he had horns a beard and a large spear.
“ALL RIGHT MAGGOTS LISTEN UP! Tremas’ orders were to kill everyone and the mind flayer. GET TO IT”
All of the excavators stood up and transformed.
“TIEFLINGS” shouted Empathia.
“Good this was starting to get boring,” said Chekai with a smile. He brought down his axe and rushed at the nearest being, which happened to be the devil. It blocked him with the spear and lunged. Chekai side stepped and punched him in the face.
“Come on, you’re a devil aren’t you show me your power,” Chekai said tauntingly. The devil suddenly teleported behind him and slashed at him. Chekai ducked and sweep kicked him. He landed hard on the glass floor cracking it. He stood and prepared to bring his axe down on the beast when again it teleported.
It laughed and then stopped everything. Chekai charged and Whyskay yelled for him to stop.
“He is held; now help the rest with the teiflings.”
Chekai groaned and then smashed into an archer and beheaded another one. He was a whirling tempest of metal and blood. Golgar was a little to his right smashing the head of the nearest teifling in with his hammer. Haulen, to his right, shoved a dagger into one’s neck and threw another into an archer’s chest who had aimed for Whyskay, who shot of a fireball at an archer on the second floor reducing him to ash. Empathia was holding in a corner blocking the blows of a warrior, the hammer denting the shield until Chekai lifted him up. He threw the poor being into the wall and stomped his chest in.
“IS THERE NONE WHO CAN OFFER ME A TRUE FIGHT,” he screamed, it seemed to the world.
Haulen punched him in the back of the head and yelled, “CALM DOWN YOU IDIOT”
Chekai looked disappointed then looked to the devil. “What about him?”
“Question him,” Empathia said, “torture him if need be but we need to know what Tremas’ plans are”
“I get to do it this time Golgar you did it last time, besides he tried to cut my arm off.”
“All right Chekai you can have him.”
Chekai walked towards the devil, an evil gleam in his eye. “Now then, tell me everything.” Chekai held up and amulet and touched it to the devils head. The devil didn’t get the chance to answer anything, for the moment the amulet touched him the hold spell reacted violently ripping him apart.
“Terribly sorry, but that spell has always been a little wonky for me.”
“I assure you it’s fine, but you need to practice it more,” Chekai commented. “Let’s see if the Mind Flayer is still alive.”
It was but just barley, it got up and looked to them all. Its tentacles touched Empathia and it reopened the portal. “Find Ms. Gann please.” It said weakly and Chekai went through the reopened portal.
“He did not just do that” said Haulen
“You know Chekai” laughed Golgar

Chapter 5

As Chekai stepped through the portal it closed behind him leaving him in the market place. But it was not the market he knew. There were flames everywhere, bodies of teiflings and humans alike were fueling the flames. He looked around and anger consumed him, there was so much destruction he couldn’t stand it. An arrow flew past his head and landed in the wall behind him. He instantly pinpointed it and charged.

“The Chronoscope has been severely damaged; my guess is by you idiots.” The Mind Flayer replied.
“Whyskay is there any way you can repair the damages?” Empathia asked.
“I might be able to but it will take some time.”
“Do it, in the meantime all we can do is pray for Chekai’s survival”
“You three worry way too much,” Golgar said, “I mean it is Chekai we are talking about, he’s probably ripping those bastards to shreds by now.”

Another teifling fell to Chekai's axe, behind him laid ten others. He was slowly working his way through the market, searching for any clues to Ms. Gann’s whereabouts. He was walking toward a shaking bush when a fireball landed abruptly next to him.
“Sssso, you are the one caussing thisss trouble.” Said a being.
“They got in my path it was their own faults, now then why don’t you show yourself and we can have a nice little chat.” Replied Chekai.
“Hmm, I’ve seen that you only carry that axe with you ssso I think I ssshall stay in the sssky.”
Chekai looked above to notice a strange red being soaring above him. He looked around taking in his surroundings, a sword 5 feet to the right, the smell of brimstone from the flying villain, the strange fire engulfing it.
A strange word comes to his lips “Abishai”
“Hmm, you know what I am.”
I didn’t but now I do,” Chekai replied.
“Tis a shame you won’t survive long enough to tell your friends.” Suddenly a fireball erupted from its hands and was flung at Chekai, who jumped to his right picked up the sword and flung it point over pommel at the Abishai. It struck it in the chest and it fell hard to the ground.
“Don’t make threats you can’t carry out”, those were the last words the Abishai heard before it slipped slowly into the darkness that was death.

Chapter 6

Chekai walked towards the moving bush and peeked behind it. There was a kid of 10 shaking and shivering despite the fires all around. He gently picked him up and started walking toward the only place he knew, The Rusty Nail.

The cracks in the Chronoscope were slowly repairing themselves thanks to Whyskay. Haulen was pacing back and forth and Golgar was taking a nap. Empathia was going over plans that no one was listening to. The Mind Flayer now up and about was feeling the power of the ruins.
“It is time,” he announced.
They gathered in the center of the room and stepped through the newly opened portal to see the destruction of the market unfold. Haulen scouted ahead using his talent of being unseen to continue. He only got 30 feet when he saw the first teifling.
“Guy, and ladies, you might want to see this.”
They all gathered around Haulen to view the carnage. Before them lay ten dead teiflings all brutally slaughtered. Farther ahead they saw a dead being; it was red with its wings crumpled behind it and a sword sticking through its chest.
“Emp, we need information,” said Haulen.
“Right, which one do we want?”
“The big red thing over there. Whyskay, get ready with that hold spell.”
Empathia started her preparations, she started to chant slowly at first than faster and a brilliant white light was cast down from the heavens and the Abishai breathed again.
“Whyskay now” yelled Haulen.
The Abishai stopped moving and glared at the four new beings around him. They smelled like the other, the one that killed him with that blasted sword, the one made of the Flametouched metal and blessed by the priests.
“WHAT DO YOU WANT, WHY NOT LET ME DIE IN PEACE” it screamed at them.
“We need information,” said Golgar grumpily.
“About that man the killed me I suppose.”
“Exactly, where did he go? I know that you can see where he is since he killed you so don’t be an idiot and prolong your suffering, now where is he,” demanded Haulen.
“The Rusty Nail, now let me die in peace.”
“Done,” Haulen said as he slit the beings throat and it closed its eyes for the final time.

Chekai kept walking with the child on his back. The tavern was almost in sight. He started to run and almost made it before the four devils surrounded him.
“You need to get out of my way.” He declared hotly.
“You are in no position to give us orders mortal.” Replied one of them.
He set the child down and told him to hide and slowly drew his axe. They closed in on him and he prepared himself for the fight. The first blow was made not by Chekai or the devils but by a familiar knife in the left eye of the nearest one.
“It is about time you showed up.”
“We had to deal with the stragglers you left behind lad,” said Golgar.
“Excuses, excuses; so are you just going to stand there all day or give me a hand?”
“Depends, do you want our help.”
“ENOUGH TALKING” screamed one of the devils, three of them teleported to the larger group and one stayed to fight Chekai.
“Well now, aren’t you brave,” Chekai said as he side stepped a lunge. He brought down his axe hard on the off-balance devil leaving a deep gouge in its back. It screamed in pain then did a sweeping strike knocking Chekai over. It stood ready to deliver the final blow when a sword appeared through its chest.
“YOU LEAVE HIM ALONE YOU BIG NATTER,” screamed the child. He twisted the blade inside the devil, making it yell in agony. It tried to teleport away but the sword and child went with it as it landed 5 feet away dead.
Chekai rushed to the child making sure he was ok. The kid smiled at him with a big grin until Chekai popped him in the back of the head.
“What was that for?”
“I told you to hide,” Chekai answered, then smiled back at the child.
“Looks like Chekai isn’t so high and mighty as he’d like to think now is he.”
“Golgar how would you like a swift kick to the pants?”
“Right then off we go.”

Chapter 7

They arrived at the rusty nail and the child was handed over to the bartender. A weary bunch of guards and civilians stood near the back tending the wounded and praying for the dead. The group was told to take the dimensional door against the wall and talk to the man in charge of defense.
Once through they discovered they were floating high above the market place in the tower of the Twelve. Chekai looking below spotted Tremas dragging Ms. Gann into the Phoenix Tavern. He mentioned it to the others and they nodded. They walked over to the man in charge; he never gave them a name.
“I hear you five have caused quite a stir with the devils.”
“I might have killed a handful,” said Chekai in reply.
“A handful is six or seven you have killed more than that, may I inquire why.”
“You may but I may not answer.”
“I see well then, may I ask for your assistance in quelling this invasion then?”
“We will do what we can but we are here for our own reasons.”
“I understand and thank you.”
With that the five went back through the door, with a patient child awaiting them on the other side. He ran to Chekai and hugged him thanking him for his kindness and begged to come with them. Chekai told him he would be better off here and he would probably not return. The child nodded and went back to the others and helped to tend the wounded.
They left the Rusty Nail and started their way to the Phoenix Tavern where Chekai saw Tremas dragging Nell. They only got a few hundred yards away from the Nail before they were ambushed. The devils came from nowhere there spears held up ready to pierce them should they move, fifteen tiefling archers aimed their bows.
“Tremas says you are to come with us, whether you want to or not,”
Chekai smiled, “Oh believe me, we want to, but we will get there on our own terms. Hey Whyskay, you done yet?”
“I have been for a while, shall we?”
“I’ll meet you there,” Chekai replied and the rest vanished. The devils in a state of shock stood there, until the first fell. Chekai had his axe down and swinging without pause. In less than thirty seconds 5 devils where down and 3 tieflings were running around headless. When they realized what was happening they stormed him.
The three remaining devils closed in. They waited for Chekai to turn his back and then struck. They hit nothing but air. Chekai opened his eyes to see Haulen smiling at him.
“Wondering how long it would take you guys to get me out of there.”
“We had some… complications”
Chekai gazed around to the small army of tieflings surrounding his friends.
“I see, well then shall we continue, and Whyskay nice work on the teleport spell,”
Chekai smiled at his companions and walked into the Phoenix Tavern.

Chapter 8

They walked to the back of the tavern, a large white Abishai stood there awaiting them.
“I am Squall, Master Tremas has been expecting you and has ordered us not to kill you, yet,” it said in a proper voice.
“Ah, good to see not all of you ugly lizards don’t have a lisp,” Chekai said in a snide voice, “the one I killed early was so annoying I was glad when I finally killed it.”
“If you are trying to get a reaction from my henchmen I would please ask you to stop, for I would really hate to have them kill such skilled people,” the familiar voice spoke. Chekai burned with rage and in a split second he rushed to the sound of it, axe drawn and ready to cleave.
He stopped when he saw the green force field in front of him. “YOU TREACHROUS PIG, I WILL TEAR YOUR HEAD FROM YOUR SHOULDERS AS YOU BREATHE.”
“So much for common decency, any way you should be happy to see me, for if I was not here poor Nell would not be alive,” with that Tremas dragged Nell from the shadows by her elbow.
“CHEKAI!” she screamed.
“It’s all right Ms. Gann we’ll get you away from him.”
“Speaking of which, I will be quite happy to return her to you if you do something for me. In the bank next to us …”
“Why should I do anything for you,” Chekai interrupted.
“Because if you do, Ms. Gann might live long enough to turn into a doddering old woman.”
“Fine, what do you want from the bank.”
“The Gann deposit box key. But there is a… small problem, but I suppose you’ll see when you get to it.” He laughed and waved the adventurers away.
“That bastard,” Chekai muttered, “I’ll rip his damn head off.”

Chapter 9

They left the tavern and walked next door. The bank was surprisingly intact and the only damage around it was an overturned mailbox. As they walked through the door into the main hallway they heard the sound of hammers banging against steel.
They crept slowly through the hall staying as close to the shadows as possible. They looked up through the archway into the bank. There was a large gray being on a platform, high above the bank floor. It was covered in a dull gray armor, which was being hammered directly into his skin.
“Ah, my pretty, pretty armor. I love you so very much, Make it shine now, or I’ll return you to Shavarath without a head,” the creature said to the teiflings who were polishing it.
“What in the name of the Sovereign Host is that thing?” Empathia asked worriedly.
Like before without know what the thing even was the name leaped into Chekai’s mind. “An orthon,” he declared.
“How do you know that?” Golgar asked.
“I don’t know, nor do I rightly care. But I think we might have to kill it to obtain the key.”
Chekai stood and walked forward. A teifling that was on guard duty saw him and drew his bow; he was ready to fire when the knife appeared in his chest. It screamed as it fell lifeless to the floor. The orthon took note and looked to the floor and noticed Chekai walking towards the center of the room.
“Who are you mortal, why do you disturb me?” It said with a booming voice.
“Tell me your name, orthon, and mine I shall give.” Replied Chekai coolly.
“You are a cheeky bastard aren’t you,” it replied calmly. The orthon teleported to the floor and glared into Chekai's eyes, taking note of the powerful warrior before him. “I am Bloodplate; now tell me your name.”
“My name Is Chekai, and I have come for the Gann deposit key.”
Bloodplate roared in amusement, “That key is mine and I have been told to guard it with my life, so I’m afraid I’ll have to kill you now.”
The orthon brought up his left arm, a weird looking crossbow was attached to it. Chekai dodged the bolt but didn’t expect the second or third. One struck him in the arm and the other was deflected by his axe.
“Now, now, that wasn’t at all nice of you Mr. Bloodplate. I could have been seriously hurt,” said Chekai with sarcasm dripping from his tongue. He pulled the bolt from his arm. “You have drawn blood with your devilish tricks and now you will pay with yours.”
Chekai charged as the orthon brought the repeating crossbow back up, he fired without pause Chekai dodging most but still taking a few in various places. Chekai cut the contraption from Bloodplate’s arm, nearly breaking it in the process. Bloodplate pulled down his axe, a menacing black thing that looked like it had not seen a fight in ages.
“I don’t believe you deserve that weapon.”
“I don’t believe I care what you think.”
“I guess I kill you and take it, it would be of more use to me anyway.”
Chekai smashed his axe against Bloodplate’s armor denting it. Chekai smiled and Bloodplate screamed. “MY ARMOR, BEAUTIFUL ARMOR!!! What have you DONE!!!” he roared at Chekai.
“I made it better, now it has seen a battle.”
“YOU SHALL BURN IN MY FIRES,” the orthon screamed, it was almost as if the armor was its child. “ARMORERS!!!! Repair me, MINIONS!!!! Take care of this idiot.”
Bloodplate started to teleport away up to his platform but Chekai grabbed on at the last second. Just as he arrived he smashed one of the armorers in the face, he fell to the ground dying on impact. The second received a hard kick to the chest, it also fell. Chekai then turned his attention to the orthon.
“It has been a hard fight my friend, but it’s time for you to die,” Chekai gripped the back of the orthon’s armor and ripped it off slowly, Bloodplate screamed in agony. He pushed the huge being off the platform. It landed on the floor in a daze. Chekai soon followed his axe high above his head. He smashed the axe into the orthon’s head, using the force of the fall to his advantage. He grabbed the axe from the dead Bloodplate and claimed it as his own, “Hellstroke that is what I shall name you.”
Bloodplate lay lifeless, his minions, shocked by his defeat retreated without discipline. They fell over each other running back through the portals from which they came. The party walked over to Chekai.
“Impressive,” said Haulen.
“BUT RECKLESS,” Haulen said cutting Chekai off. He smacked him in the back of the head and walked away.
“Emp, can you stop my bleeding? Please.”
“You realize,” Empathia said as he healed Chekai’s wounds, “That doing something like that worries us right, we might not say it but we do care.”
“Don’t start that, “we’re a family” crap Emp, you know I hate it,” replied Chekai almost gagging.
“Fine, fine, but we are and you know it.”
“Whatever, let’s just get the key and get out.” Chekai searched the body of Bloodplate and found the key around his neck. He ripped it off and walked out of the bank. “Let’s go get Nell back.”

Chapter 10

“Well, well, well, I wasn’t expecting you fools back for quite some time. I assume you have the key so hand it over,” Tremas said arrogantly.
“Here,” Chekai said throwing it at Tremas and successfully hitting him in the face. Chekai snickered and Tremas turned red in the face.
“We shall see who is laughing last,” Tremas took the key and unlocked the box sitting next to him. “At last,” said Tremas, “the Sliver of Time.”
Tremas turned to Nell and cut her arm. A white light surrounded them and Nell collapsed on the floor. Tremas laughed loudly, but something about him changed. Chekai looked closely and watched as his features became younger. No longer was he a wrinkled old man that bent over, he was now a young man standing tall in the face of his enemies.
“Ah, this feels so much better. Now then for your part of the deal, I return Nell to you, as a doddering old woman,” he said laughing all the while. “Now then my abishai let us be off we have something important to attend to.” Tremas and his minions vanished and the force-field vanished allowing Chekai to get to Nell.
“Ms. Gann, are you all right?”
The replies came slowly, and in a voice much older than what Nell was supposed to be, “I shall be fine Chekai, but we must stop that man. Please you must stop him.”
“Guys you’ll never believe who I just found back here,” shouted Haulen.
“Whom,” asked Chekai.
“Our big metallic friend,” Haulen replied, “Whyskay why don’t you give him a little charge.”
“I don’t think that will work.”
“Hey it’s worth a try.”
“Fine,” Whyskay said as he fired a bolt of lightning at Recton.
The whirring of gears sounded from inside of him. He looked around slowly and walked forward. He spotted the adventurers and made what looked to be a grin.
“Where have you been?” he asked with impatience in his voice.
“Better question, why have you been sleeping?” Chekai replied in annoyance.
“The lack of something better to do, with you all here I assume Ms. Gann has been saved and that pompous ass Tremas has been taken care of?”
“Um, well you see…”
“What’s wrong?”
“Well, it wasn’t our fault per se.”
“WHAT HAPPENED,” Recton shouted.
“Tremas has stolen her youth, now we are going to go and stop him but we need you to take Ms. Gann back to the Rusty Nail. We will escort you there and try to find out where that teifling has gone. When we do rest assured he will pay for what he has done and it will be with his life.”
“Fine, but you better succeed.”

Chapter 11

The trip to the Rusty Nail was mostly uneventful, with the exception of a few stranded guards that were rescued by the group and the stray invader here and there. As they entered the tavern the child that was saved earlier ran to the group and hugged Chekai smiling,
“I knew you’d come back, there’s no way you couldn’t.”
“Of course, with friends like mine enemies are nothing but wheat to the scythe.”
“Oh yeah, that big man upstairs wanted to see you guys.”
“Thank you little one. May the Sovereign Host smile upon you in the future,” said Empathia in a manner that meant, “thank you but we must be leaving now good bye and so long”.
“Can I come with you Chekai, please I promise I won’t get in the way, I can watch your back. Please please please please please.”
“Not just yet, for if you truly want to come with us you must be able to hold your weapon and fight for hours on end. Can you do that little one?”
“Stop calling me little, my name is Rhyit, and my father was a swordsman, he trained me for hours on end. So can I join you, please?”
“Well Rhyit, I personally would bring you along, but the choice is not up to me alone it is a group vote. So group, shall we bring him along?”
“No,” said Empathia, “he will be a burden at his current age. If he is still alive when we go back we might let him in but now… it’s a pointless move.”
“I have to agree,” said Haulen, “No matter how skilled you are right now we cannot take a young boy into a dangerous fight like this.”
“Golgar, surely you don’t agree with them do you,” Chekai looked pleadingly.
“Of course not, if he wants to tag along let him, as long as you’re going to watch him and not me.”
“Of course he is my new friend after all. Besides I think it would be nice to have someone near my age to play with.”
Rhyit looked at Chekai like he was crazy; surely this large imposing man couldn’t possibly be close to his age. Sure he acted like a child and always had a smile on his face but he had to at least be 25 years of age. Chekai grinned at Rhyit and laughed a little.
“Whyskay, what do you think we should do,” asked Haulen.
“Rhyit, in twenty years we will be at this inn. If you still want to join us find us there. But until then you will have to wait, for we cannot take you with us into an almost certain death. I am sorry my young friend.”
“Then it has been decided, see you later, little one,” said Empathia, amused that she got her way.
Rhyit turned to Chekai and whispered into his ear, “I really hate that woman.”
Chekai laughed and replied, “Who really does in this group.”

Chapter 12

The Grandmaster of the Twelve was waiting for them atop his high perch. He was staring down below into the chaos of the market. Violent winds shook the great market place tent that stood high in the market square.
“You summoned?”
“Ah yes, well first I would like to thank you for ridding us of the blasted oaf in the bank, we had been attempting to remove him for almost ten hours. We also wish to thank you for rescuing our stranded guards; we did not have a force large enough to get them ourselves.”
“Is that all,” Chekai asked, “We kind of need to get going. We need to get a certain tiefling.
“Ah yes about that, a large group of devils has recently passed through the Steam Tunnels.”
“The Steam Tunnels?” Chekai asked a quizzical look on his face.
“Honestly Chekai, do you ever listen to anything I say,” said Empathia in an irritated voice.
“Hardly ever,” Chekai said amused.
Empathia, now annoyed started to ramble about how the Steam Tunnels where an advanced sewer system for the market place, it is also where many kobolds and troglodytes alike call home.
“Emp, you do realize of course, that you talk too much?”
“Chekai you realize of course that I’m going to beat you within an inch of your life,” Empathia said swinging her mace menacingly toward Chekai.
“Ohhhh, I’m so scared,” Chekai replied in mock fear.
Whyskay smacked them both upside the head with her staff and told them to stop acting like children. She then turned back to the Grandmaster and thanked him for the information.

The group left the inn and headed towards the tunnels. The trip was rather short and boring, thou Chekai seemed to notice the small figure tagging along at a safe distance. Every now and then he would turn around to see the figure rush to hide behind a discarded crate or piece of rubble. He decided not to mention it to the others, although he was sure they already knew.
They reached the tunnels and looked around. There was no noise, it was almost too quiet.
“Whyskay, erect a barrier so our little friend doesn’t follow us any further, we can’t risk him getting hurt,” said Haulen.
Whyskay set about doing this as Haulen started to move forward, he donned his cloaks hood and seemed to vanish before everyone’s eyes. He creeped down the stairs to the first landing and looked ahead. He spotted another monstrous orthon, this one sporting a larger crossbow but very little armor and a smaller axe. He crept back up and removed the hood.
“Your cloak is ridiculous, where did you get that thing anyway,” asked Golgar who almost had a panic attack when Haulen suddenly appear two inches from his face.
“That is for me to know and you to never find out,” Haulen replied in an amused voice. “Anyway we’ve got a small problem. There is another orthon down there; this one seems to prefer range so Chekai I think your out of luck on this one. Whyskay think you can hit him with one of your spells?”
“I might if I can get him to stay in one spot. Empathia do you think you can get him to hold still long enough?”
“I can try, was there anything else down there Haulen?”
“Not that I saw but that doesn’t mean they aren’t there. Chekai, Golgar, and me will stay to the back until were needed if we do this right we won’t have to get in the way at all.”
“Man we never get the fun jobs, do we Golgar.” Chekai said in a most displeased voice.
“Unfortunately that is our lot in life lad, first in and last to fight.” Golgar replied chuckling.
“All right, well if we’re going to do this now is the time,” Whyskay said, no trace of hesitation in her voice.

The group walked slowly down there stairs, trying not to alert the orthon that they were there. The orthon was standing atop one of the sewage pipes just out of reach of the bridge. A tiefling scout ran over to him to report.
“General Razorarm, Tremas has successfully moved into the market tent, shall we move to join him?”
Razorarm smelled the air and smiled, “No, I think we shall have company very soon.”
“General, what do you mean by that?”
“Get the men ready for a fight, they smell strong.”
“Yes, sir,” said the tiefling as it departed to rejoin the others.

The group watched the exchange and waited for the tiefling to depart. Chekai sensed something was off and put his hand on his axe. Golgar noticed the shift to and put his hand on the hilts of his weapons. Haulen already aware of what was happening moved Empathia and Whyskay to the back of the group. They didn’t move two feet before the bolt struck Haulen in the chest.
Chekai watched as his oldest friend and mentor fell before his very eyes. He looked at the orthon with the smile on his face, knowing his bolt struck true. Chekai looked back to Haulen, he ripped a dagger from his body and through it with a force unlike any he mustered before. The orthon saw it coming and teleported; the dagger buried itself up to the hilt in the stone wall.
“YOU BASTARD I’LL KILL YOU!” screamed Chekai in a mighty rage. His axe in his hands and he charged the orthon. The orthon was prepared until he saw the eyes of his attacker. The once pale blue eyes of the large warrior were blackening as if ink had been dropped in water and clouded it. Chekai through a punch and it landed square on the orthon’s jaw.
Razorarm collapsed; never before had he faced such a terrifying opponent. He called his small force and they attacked Chekai, pulling him from their master. Chekai fought like a madman, all trace of his previous skill and finesse gone. The teiflings were being slain left and right, in a desperate move one of the teiflings shoved his sword through his wrist. Chekai yelled in pain and dropped his axe. He broke the sword using his gloved hand and pulled it out.
Whyskay was throwing fireballs at Razorarm keeping him from launching an attack of his own. Empathia was trying to bring Haulen back from the edge of death. Golgar watched as his friend was overrun and leapt into action. With a terrifying shout he threw his axe into the group two teiflings who heard him turned and parted letting the axe hit the one in front of them. Golgar then pulled the buckler from his back and rushed into the fray.
Being a dwarf Golgar was just at knee level to the teiflings. All around him they started screaming in pain as he brought his hammer into their knees shattering them on impact. He moved his way to Chekai’s side. Chekai who was now using the shard of the sword from his wrist turned and swung on Golgar, who blocked the blow with his shield just in time. Chekai didn’t relent thou, he was berserk, slashing and stabbing at anything that dared to move.
The teiflings stood back and watched as the two comrades locked themselves in a fight to the death. Golgar brought his shield up to block a blow and brought his hammer into Chekai’s stomach. Chekai went down and gasped for air, his eyes went back to normal and he calmed down, dropping the sword shard. Golgar was holding the teiflings at bay while Chekai recovered, when he finally stood back up Golgar smiled.
“You get angry too often,” Golgar said in a joking tone.
“You talk too much,” Chekai said in reply.
Haulen opened his eyes and Empathia stood back. He stood slowly then looked for the orthon. Whyskay was still firing off spells at him, and Chekai and Golgar were holding his minions at bay. Haulen walked slowly to the edge of the bridge and looked down 50 feet to the floor, then stepped off.

Razorarm took a breath, the wizard had been firing spells non-stop for the last 10 minutes. He figured that he would save her for last; let her watch as he killed the rest of them. He was still in thought when the dagger appeared in his arm. He screamed in agony as he ripped it from his flesh and muscle
“WHO DID THAT?” he exclaimed, anger seething from his every pore.
“If I said I did, would you be surprised?” Haulen replied, annoyance in his voice. “Who do you think you are to put a bolt through me, you could say I’m a little miffed. So now I’m going to kill you,” with the final words he removed his cloak. He tore the thin leather off of his jerkin to reveal daggers all along it; he ripped the thin leather off of his legging to reveal even more. He tore off his sleeves to reveal a device on each arm that brought knives to his hands.
“Who do you think you are mortal? I am Razorarm, I am IMOR…”
Razorarm stopped mid-sentence to usher a howl of pain from the dagger that materialized in his eye. Haulen activated the device again and brought a fresh dagger to his hand. He was thoroughly annoyed with this orthon. It shot him then dared question him, it would die in agony.
Razorarm fired his crossbow at Haulen, who in turn blocked the bolt with the simple turning of his daggers. He flicked some away others he dodged, not one bolt came close to touching him but all Razorarm saw was a struggling human, and how wrong he was. Haulen in the midst of dodging a bolt threw a dagger at the crossbow cutting the string clean in two.
Haulen brought a new dagger to his hand in the blink of an eye; slowly he walked towards the orthon. Razorarm now feeling terror clinch his heart brought up his axe in defense and backed away slowly. Haulen would not have it; he rushed Razorarm and jumped driving his dagger into his neck. Razorarm roar in pain but it was soon cut off as ten daggers pierced hit throat.
“You asked me who I was; I will tell you seeing as how you are going to die here. I am Haulen; I am a servant to my lord Sulomades, and guardian to his son Chekai. No one else knows of this nor will they ever find out. So you want to be immortal, die in agony.” With that Haulen shoved two daggers through Razorarm’s eyes and walked away.
Haulen walked back up to the bridge to see Golgar and Chekai still fighting the, now significantly smaller, group of tieflings.
“I thought you would be done with this by now.” Haulen commented as he watched the two warriors duck and dodge slashes and thrusts.
“Well anytime you want to help would be great,” said Golgar.
“Well I didn’t want to spoil your fun, but if you insist.”
Twenty daggers flew through the air and each found their mark within the chest of an enemy. Haulen slowly walked towards Chekai and looked at his wrist then sent him off to Empathia; Golgar followed him for lack of anything better to do. Whyskay walked towards Haulen, for he witnessed Haulen’s jump from the bridge.
“You are not a normal being are you,” she whispered.
One of Haulen’s eyes turned black and looked Whyskay in the face, “Do you truly wish to know?”
“Haulen I would follow you to the edge of the abyss, my trust is in you fully. But if you choose to keep secrets try not to jump off of things that would seriously injure any normal man.”
“Hmm, you may be right about that, now come let’s go check on our friends.”

Chapter 13

“So now where?” Chekai asked, picking up his axe and testing his newly healed wrist.
“Well, we can always bring back a tiefling and question it.” Said Empathia.
“Or we can go through that creepy portal looking thing down there,” Golgar pointed out absent mindedly.
“What creepy portal,” Whyskay questioned.
“That one,” Golgar said and pointed at the large green portal on the ground. “I suppose it has to lead somewhere doesn’t it?”
“Golgar you are the smartest idiotic dwarf I have ever had the pleasure of meeting,” Said Empathia.
“Now that is just uncalled for, you high and mighty cleric, someone needs to knock you off your damn high horse.”
“Well we all know it won’t be you now will it shorty.”
“It’ll be me,” declared Chekai, “now shut the hell up and let’s go I would like to save Nell today.”
The arguing stopped and the party climbed down to the large and looming portal before them. Through it they could see a large platform and broken stalls. The tiefling Tremas stood atop a pillar chanting something in a deep voice. Again Chekai was the first one to step through; calmly he walked towards the pillar as the rest of the party stepped through. Tremas saw them enter and turned to face them.
“You fools again. I was almost certain that oaf Razorarm would have killed you.”
“Oh he tried,” said Haulen, “but it’s hard to accomplish something like that when you run straight into your opponent’s blade. How he managed to do it as much as he did I’ll never know. Any way back to the topic on hand, give us the Sliver of Time and we will let you go free.”
“I have a better idea, Squall, Nox, Tarvis, Drekk, and Vitter, come out and rid me of these pests.”
As he said the names five colored abishai came from the sky to land in front of the party.
“These beings pose no threat,” said one that was white as snow.
“We shall end you quickly,” said another that was as blue as lightning.
“Your flesh will be burned,” stated another that was a red as flame.
“Your bones melted,” said one as black as night.
“You shall fall before us as quick as a fire is snuffed,” said the last that was colored a sickly green.
“Five against five, the odds hardly seem fair. Everyone choose your partner, lets teach ‘em to dance,” said Haulen in an amused voice.
“Which of you is the strongest?” Chekai asked politely.
“I am,” said the red one, “My strength matches that of a volcano ready to explode.”
“No, I am” the blue on declared, “my power is that of a raging tempest.”
“Hmm, then I shall fight you both,” Chekai declared, “Who wishes to surrender their partner?”
“I shall,” Empathia said, “I wouldn’t do much good against any of these oafs anyway.”
“Thank you for your generosity, now then, shall we begin our little dance of death,” Haulen declared rushing the green one. “And what might you name be?” he asked as he slashed a dagger at its chest.
“I am Nox and I shall fill your lungs with a poison two centuries in the making,” Nox stated as he spewed green gas from his mouth covering Haulen.
“Ah, that would’ve worked against the others but you see,” Haulen pulled the cloak around him and pulled the hood over his face, “I have a special cloak that’s proves me immune.”
“Then I shall kill you the old fashioned way.” Nox lunged, his claws green with poison, “One cut from me and you will die with your blood boiling in your veins.
“One cut from me, and you’d wish that would happen to you.”
Nox lunged and Haulen parried each blow. Haulen threw two daggers simultaneously at Nox who brought his wing around him to block. As the wings rose Nox saw two feet planting themselves firmly into his face. A dagger was brought into his neck and Nox vanished.
“Now where did that bugger run off to,” Haulen pondered.

“I shall melt your skin from you bones,” said the black abishai as Golgar approached.
“Well aren’t you just friendly,” Golgar commented.
“Why would I be friendly to a pitiful thing like you?”
“Pitiful? That’s crossing the line,” Golgar threw his axe at the abishai.
The abishai dodge the axe with ease but didn’t expect the little man to run head first into his chest. The wind knocked out of it, the abishai doubled over just as the Golgar’s hammer came up into his face. The abishai flew back and landed on the ground hard. Golgar swung his hammer again towards his face but he suddenly disappeared and the hammer smashed into the earth.
“What in the world?” Golgar asked to nobody.

“I shall enjoy freezing you inch by inch.” The white one said to Whyskay.
“Ice? Well then, this shall be too easy.”
“What are you talking about woman?”
Whyskay conjured a ball of fire to her hand and tossed it to and fro. The white abishai backed up a few paces. The fire gleamed in Whyskay’s eyes and seemed to pull out more fire from behind them.
“Let’s see how fast you can run shall we,” Whyskay said amused.
The abishai took flight and flew high above hoping to avoid this mage of fire. Whyskay sent the fireball hurtling faster; it struck the abishai in the center of the back. The abishai fell fast but vanished just inches from the ground.
“Burn in my eternal flames,” declared Whyskay turning around to join with the others.

Chekai grinned at the two abishai before him. Both were bickering about who was the stronger of the two and who should fight first.
“You are the weakest so you should fight him first, that way when he defeats you it shall only take me a second to wipe him from the face of the earth.”
“You fight him; after all I shall need my strength to burn the rest of them to cinders.”
“How about you both fight me at once and I kill you in one blow.”
Both of the abishai turned to face him, their faces turning into snarls. The blue one took flight as the red one charged in. The blue one shot a bolt of lightning straight for Chekai’s heart, but the red one ran right into it, its charge proving fatal.
“You IDIOT,” screamed the blue one not noticing the giant black axe flying towards it.
Both abishai vanished and Chekai’s axe fell to the ground with a metallic clang.
“Shame, I wanted more fun.”
“The mortal says he wants some fun,” Said Tarvis.
“Who be us to deny him that which he so desires.” Replied Nox
“The raging winds would not have been defeated so easily.” Stated Squall.
“Aye, it was only luck that saved them from their doom in that instant.” Dekker added.
“Then let the cold winds of the north combine with the raging tempest, let the poisons of the centuries add its power, and the acid of the darkest pits surround us in its glory, let fire give us our shape,” Vitter shouted loudly. The others shouted with him and they each came into view as their power was called. A brilliant light surrounded them all and when it disappeared a huge monster was left in their place.
“Now then, give us the fun you seek,” the conjoined abishai shouted in the voices of the five.

Chapter 14

“What in the hell is that thing?” Chekai yelled over the roaring winds created by the monsters enormous wings.
“It’s an Abishai Destroyer, we would need an army to take that thing head on.” Haulen yelled back.
“HA, you mortal fools now you shall feel our true power. We call upon the elemental dragons, great being of flames we summon you.” As the chant concluded the faint outline of a red dragon cloaked the destroyer.
“It doesn’t look like we have time for an army,” Empathia said and began to chant.
“What is she doing now?” asked Golgar a worried look on his face.
“She is summoning something way out of her league, Whyskay you have to stop her. Chekai, Golgar we have to hold off that thing off.”
“Right,” Chekai and Golgar said simultaneously, both charging forward at the monster before them. As soon as they were in range however the dragon solidified. The maw of the great beast opened wide and a great blast of fire shot out.
Golgar shoved Chekai out of the way of the flames and pulled his buckler down in front of him. The roar of flames drowned out Chekai’s shout. He slowly felt his rage building deep within him, letting it slowly consume him. He was almost fully gone when the flames stopped and Golgar stood unscathed. Chekai’s rage was washed out by his relief.
Golgar looked up at the dragon and gave the biggest grin he could muster. “I’m a DWARF you over grown kobold,” He shouted in defiance “my grandmother makes flames hotter than that measly ember. Now then Chekai, let’s kill it.”

Whyskay was floating through the astral plane, looking for Empathia. It seemed that she was floating for an eternity when she finally found her. She floated over to her and established a connection. What are you doing here Empathia, we cannot afford to lose you here.
We need a more powerful ally on our side, besides it is my choice to make the pact.
Haulen says you’re going out of your league, I think he might be right.
Haulen this, Haulen that, he is not our leader I am and I am doing this whether you agree with me or not.
Empathia, we need you alive do not make me force you back into your mind.
As if you could, besides the servant I want is already here.
Tell me you didn’t.
It would be a lie.

Golgar charged into the Abishai’s chest with his shield the enchantment temporarily broken. Chekai used the opportunity to slam his axe into the back of the Abishai but having no effect. Haulen continued throwing daggers accomplishing nothing as they all bounced off of the thick hide.
Whyskay woke up first and looked at the others, “GET OUT OF THERE!!!!” she yelled desperately. The warning proved ineffective as a great beast appeared out of nowhere and smashed its huge fist into the Abishai. The Abishai fell under this mighty blow and Chekai and Golgar prepared to fight the new comer.
“WHY DIDN’T YOU STOP HER?!?” Haulen screamed at Whyskay.
“By the time I got there the pact was already formed. He summoned a Hezarou.”
“What the hell is a hezarou?” Golgar asked.
“A demon from hell, it has an immense power. Empathia can’t hold it here for long let’s hope it runs out of power soon.”
The hezarou and the destroyer started a battle that nearly destroyed everyone in the area. If it wasn’t for Whyskay’s barrier they would have surely be crushed. Soon the Abishai was beaten down and the hezarou vanished no longer able to sustain its form. Whyskay dropped the barrier and they walked to the Abishai.
They approached it slowly, Chekai looked into its eyes and declaring it dead. They went to leave but as soon as Chekai turned the Abishai grabbed him. It stood and kicked the others into the barrier surrounding the tent. It laughed and turned its attention to Chekai, Squall and Tarvis wanted this mortal to suffer greatly. They smashed him onto the ground repeatedly.
They smashed him into the ground right next to his axe which he immediately grabbed up. He looked at his friends all unconscious and let the blood rage come. He felt it grow then all of his senses vanished. He was left in darkness.

“Who the hell do you think you are,” a dark voice asked.
“Who said that?” the abishai demanded.
The voice came dark and annoyed, “I am the one who is soon to destroy you, if you do not release me this instant.”
The abishai shocked at this order looked at the being in his hand. The once pale blue eyes now clouded with black, and darkness almost seemed to flow from his every pore. The abishai dropped him to the ground where he landed on his feet with little effort. The axe still in his hands he looked the abishai dead in the eyes.
“Now then back to my original question, who the hell do you think you are?”
“I am the great abishai destroyer, demolisher of fortresses and eater of mortals. Who are you to question me?”
“I am your lord and master, and I decree you die.” As the words were spoken the now possessed Chekai leapt to the air with a strength not his own and cut the beast’s head from its shoulders. As the head of the destroyer rolled the abishai inside split and the destroyer disappeared, with the abishai lying scattered and dead. As the dark that clouded Chekai’s eyes receded he collapsed going unconscious.

Chapter 15

Tremas stopped chanting as a blue light appeared in front of him. Before him stood a massive devil, it was easily ten feet tall with huge wings upon his back. It looked at Tremas with eyes as black as the night. It glared at Tremas seeming to stare right through him.
“Why did you summon me tiefling, are you so eager to die?”
“It is you who shall die Sulomades, when I use the sliver of time to steal your youth.”
Tremas slashed the sliver of time across Sulomades, but as soon as it touched his scales it shattered. A brilliant light flew from it blinding Tremas for a second, and he felt the life force he stole being drained out of him.
“No,” he cried “the Sliver of time, how could it have broken so easily.”
“You fool; you can’t steal youth from a true immortal. I shall take you back to Shavarath; maybe a century in the torture pits shall cull your disobedience.”
“Please my lord,” Tremas said now on his knees, “have mercy.”
“On you who tried to kill me? I think not.”
Sulomades vanished taking Tremas with him.

Haulen, Whyskay and the others, with the exception of Chekai, all regained consciousness and stood. The winds whipped violently around the tip and everyone started having problems standing. Haulen yell something indecipherable to Whyskay, and he and Golgar ran to pick up Chekai. Whyskay had a dimensional door up and they carried Chekai through to the tower of the twelve.
Chekai awoke a short time later. Haulen told him that he missed an excellent light show, and Golgar elaborated stating that the market place tent exploded. The grandmaster thanked them once again and Rhyit was walking towards them. When he got within two feet they all vanished.

Chekai was bent over in a corner, heaving violently. Golgar had to sit down and Empathia was looking over Haulen, who had appeared five feet above the ground. Whyskay took in her surroundings and realized they were back inside the chronoscope. Nelle and Recton were waiting at the entrance for the group to recuperate. Chekai stood tall once again and walked over to them.
“Glad to see you back to normal Ms. Gann,” he said politely.
“All thanks to you.” She replied, a smile touching her lips.
“But we didn’t get the sliver back or have any idea what happened to Tremas.
“Does it matter?”
“Only for the fact that I won’t be able to kill him, seeing as how I don’t know where he is.”
“Don’t worry my friend; you have succeeded in protecting Nelle that is all that matters to us.”
Before he said anymore Nelle kissed his cheek and placed in item in his hands. He looked at the gauntlets that seemed to surge with energy. He looked at Nelle who smiled and waved farewell as they departed. He waved back and put the gloves on feeling a surge of power run through him. He liked the feeling.

It was close to midnight when the group arrived back at the Rusty Nail. But no sooner had they walked in then a back door burst open and a well-built man approached Chekai and punched him in the face. Chekai touched his lip and looked at the blood on his gloved hand.
“Worst mistake of your day,” He said to the man. He threw a punch that connected at the man’s chin and watch as electricity shot out of the glove into the man’s body making him drop like a stone.

Rhyit’s Adventure Coming Soon.