The Worldeater Saga, Part XXXVIII: The Fall of Polemarch Andalso

Almost immediately, Drakkenmont’s forces pressed in around the Resistance’s brutal charge. All was smoke and chaos, blood and gore, countless slave-soldiers cut down amidst cries for vengeance and liberty from Sapient lips. Battle’s disorientation soon saw Tuiln’s soldiers separated into groups that sought to navigate the fog of war, utilising arcane signal flares from the mages amongst their number. As they marched throughout the field and captured territory to establish a position behind enemy lines, Sapience found themselves beset by an endless array of infantry and officers alike.

All throughout their struggle, Polemarch Andalso lurked on the field, his loyal wyrm visiting death and disarray upon the brave warriors of the Resistance. Deploying clouds of choking gas, skittering spider mines, and other deadly variations of ylemtech bombardment from his ixtamyl, the Governor of the Red Quarter demonstrated his willingness to personally quell the rebellion brewing at his borders. He did not yet reveal himself, opting instead to remain aloof and give commands to test defenses and determination of his enemies.

As his elite fighters engaged Sapience’s heroes, he gave orders for a magitechnical bombardment. A magitechnical artillery battery emerged from its cover ‘neath the crimson sands of the Red Quarter, its position fortified by a shield projector. As it drew energy from a distant generator, lurid energy amassed at the battery’s threefold barrels. The barrels soon expelled this energy, carving destruction across the battlefield in unprecedented waves of terrifying assault. Though the adventurers suffered heavy losses on the initial volley, they swiftly rallied and sought out the generator powering this artillery battery and tore it down before moving on to disarming the shield that guarded the battery from physical assault.

The gathered army of slave soldiers redoubled their fervent efforts to beat back the Resistance as Polemarch Andalso personally took the field, his zweihander clutched in an iron grip.

Adventurers quickly converged upon the Polemarch, hitting him with everything they could muster. Though their force would normally be overwhelming to an average mortal, Andalso demonstrated the eternal resilience and technological prowess of his people, facing down more than sixty of Sapience’s finest warriors in a battle that kicked up dust across the red desert. Even as he cut down many in his quest to defeat the Resistance, the Governor found himself retreating often, replenishing his reserves and preparing new gambits and strategies in his fruitless attempt to break the collective will of his foes.

Though he fought valiantly in the name of the Autarch’s rule of the region at his back, the Polemarch found himself so utterly disabled at one point that Nawan Karthi, Arqeshi Sciomancer of the Conclave of Magic, saw the perfect opportunity to close the battle. Calling upon the immense might of his singularity, the mage boldly collapsed its energy inward, drawing the Polemarch directly into its center and unravelling his very elemental constituency into a faint, colourful smear. Though the Resistance roared out in triumph, their celebration swiftly found an end in the grinding interruption of fell machinery – somewhere out there beneath the dusty battlefield rested Andalso’s trump card, its mysterious circuitry serving to initiate his return to the fight.

Blademaster Tuiln gave a mysterious order to the Titan Kurak, calling upon it to initiate the Resistance’s own gambit. After a brief internal prayer, the Titan focused inward and unleashed the energy rattling through its brilliant core in a shattering shockwave that served to obliterate any and all ylemtech present upon the field – at the cost of Kurak’s life and its status as one of those fell echoes of Dreikathi dominance from so long ago. Though the once-Titan was too slow to deny Andalso’s rebirth, lurid smoke engraved terrible ripples upon the sky, hinting at the machine’s destruction – and the end of the Polemarch’s feigned immortality. After engaging in battle once more, it did not take long for another clever Sciomancer to usher Andalso to his true end. Wielding the ravenous might of Czjetija in full, Boube of the Conclave of Devotion paid the shadow’s price in exchange for the most terrifying of sorcerous executions, consigning the Dreikathi warrior to an ignominious end amidst the hissing cries of all-consuming darkness so many planes away.

As Tuiln called for a departure from the field, Sapience celebrated their triumph over a Polemarch that had once terrorised their very realm – and looked to the northern roads, blocked by rubble and rotting dead. The Blademaster assured his soldiers that they could take time to recover and that fresh troops from Dramlai Watch would begin the difficult process of clearing the path into the heart of the Red Quarter.

Even as Sapience takes that well-deserved rest, the tireless circuitry of an awe-inspiring machine hums to life, calling upon an agent impervious to rust…

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