The Worldeater Saga, Part XXXVII: To Ride for Freedom

Roaring aloud a unified warcry with weapons raised, the Resistance thundered forward towards Polemarch Andalso and his forces. With every footfall upon Albedi soil, Bards called out to their fellows and stirred their hearts with uplifting songs of war, their symphonic urgings joined by inspiring cries from the Dauntless Host and the expedient aid of emboldened Teradrim. As they sped forward, Drakkenmont pivoted their focus in an attempt to stymie the incoming charge, presenting yet more challenges for Sapience’s avengers to defeat before they could meet the opposing army’s commander.

With a commanding cry from Vierkathi officers, Drakkenmont’s punitive force unleashed a hail of arrows.

Sapience’s accomplished magi and esoteric scholars – Ascendril, Sciomancers, and Archivists all – stood against this wave of innumerable projectiles, unwilling to allow such simple measures to stop the full fury of the Resistance unleashed. They joined together and conjured sheets of incandescent elemental energy or else manipulated gravity and trajectory, tearing the arrows from the sky and rendering them naught but an afterthought. Even the mighty Ravagers joined in, turning arrows to ashes with waves of obliterating hellfire. Though they failed to pluck every single vicious missile from the skies, they turned an inevitable end into nothing but splinters beneath the hooves of the liberating charge determined to meet Drakkenmont head on.

The Vierkathi officers called to escalate measures, sending soldiers scrambling to rotate siege weapons towards the onrushing charge.

In another display of grit and military mastery, Sapience’s Syssin snipers, fell Runecarvers, and wise Shamans answered the call to duty. In a hail of lightning, accursed bolts, and precise archery, Drakkenmont’s forces found themselves beset by ruthless distraction and innumerable losses that bought time for the Resistance to close more distance before the catapults and trebuchets could launch their tremendous payload. Though their efforts were valiant enough that they would have earned lost Aryon’s approval, Andalso’s soldiers managed to let fly the colossal boulders meant to siege Dramlai’s walls.

As these tremendous rocks flew towards the heroic charge bearing down upon Drakkenmont, the egotistical Ravagers and furious Zealots amongst the Resistance stepped up to prove their mettle. Through sheer will or fiery faith, they drove away all that threatened the approach, minimising Sapience’s losses before battle could be joined in truth. Tranquil even amidst the heat of battle, Sentaari monks banished boulders to the Void, leaving only a few for staunch Teradrim to catch and reduce to little more than sand. Not yet spent, Drakkenmont’s officers called to let loose a second volley of arrows, once more hoping to rain black death down upon the brave warriors. Tidesages swiftly sought to hamper accuracy with whorls of enchanted mist, ensuring that many arrows missed their mark – and those that did not miss found themselves turned away by shimmering shields of bone fragments wrought by fervent Earthcallers. Yet more of Drakkenmont’s archers found themselves plunged into night’s alluring darkness by Sciomancers, their flexible sorcery finding footing upon the field in interesting, tactical ways.

Once more, Andalso’s soldiers sought to escalate their military measures. With a sharp gesture towards the backline, the Vierkathi officers called for a ylemtech artillery strike against the charging Resistance. Moments later, a devastating beam of magitechnical energy carved across the Red Quarter, heating sand to glass and obliterating the landscape unfortunate enough to span the path of its lethal unleashing. Sapience’s heroes veered to the left and right, though many were lost in this initial bombardment. Had it not been for the miraculous intervention of loyal Luminaries, the numerological formulae of genius Archivists, and the sanguine aegis of the Bloodborn, many more would have fallen that day – many warriors narrowly survived their brush with Drakkenmont’s dreaded ylemtech only by the grace of these genius minds, ensuring that the liberating force had the manpower for the fight to come.

Though many lives were saved, the mounts of myriad soldiers were not as lucky. Unwilling to cease their approach, Sentinels, Indorani, Oneiromancers, and Praenomen leapt to the task of remedying this grave logistical loss. The Indorani prepared new chariots through their mastery of Tarot’s secrets, their aid matched only by the natural prowess of woodlore specialists calling out to the sojourns of rugged haatun of the Red Quarter. Omei’s mysterious Oneiromancers gifted colourful palettes of quetzals to some soldiers, ensuring they could ride to battle once more. Opting instead to inform these fallen steeds that their service was not yet done, the Dominion’s dreaded Consanguine reanimated myriad fallen horses and camels, allowing the Resistance’s liberator cadets to ride into battle once more alongside Sapience’s adventuring heroes. Blessed Luminaries and Templars, fell Revenants and fervent Earthcallers one and all followed suit in this manner, restoring life to dead soldiers through manners emblematic of their diverse walks of life, bolstering the Resistance’s numbers once more.

Blademaster Tuiln, refusing to give up when vengeance and justice were within his grasp, forged forward – alone, intent upon buying time for the charge to recoup from the devastating laser assault. Noticing this, Drakkenmont deployed dangerous assassins to waylay his approach. Separated from their commander by a gulf of hostile territory, flaming glass, and shattered earth, the Resistance’s Wayfarers picked a course across the field, even as Alchemists and Oneiromancers sought to undo the devastation in their own ways, allowing them to ride forward to reinforce the Ashtani warrior. Monks, Wardens, and Revenants jumped to his aid in a flurry of martial prowess and supernatural strangulation, cutting down those killers that sought to put an end to the leader of Sapience’s freedom fighters. Some would-be slayers found themselves struck down by the whirling axes of attentive Wayfarers, ensuring that even distant threats to Tuiln’s life were easily swat away by grit and bravery.

So close now as to see Andalso himself on the field, the Resistance charged forward. Heavier soldiers like the Templar, Wardens, and Carnifex amongst them cleared the way, shouldering aside weakling soldiers, crushing skulls, and barreling forward amidst animalistic howls in their attempt to force a way to the back line. Alongside their armoured compatriots came savage Shapeshifters who swiftly leapt into the fray in a flurry of fang and claw, their alacrity matched only by the preternatural speed at which the assembled Praenomen carved a bloody swathe through Drakkenmont’s ranks.

Then, battle truly joined.

Penned by my hand on Falsday, the 20th of Severin, in the year 513 MA.