Adventures From The Realm
Late in the year 2012AD a collection of parchments were discovered. They were archived deep inside the vaults of an abandoned Castle, long since disappeared. The once grand fortress has relinquished her secrets securely buried below crumbling parapets. Painstaking translation of the documents has resurrected a lost realm.
The diarist of the time was an educated observer, a religious man accepted by all, who made it his business to record and illustrate the thriving realm. Castles, Royal families, Heroes and Heroines; the power struggles, the ruthlessness and hardships of life, and some Castle’s rulers, rewarded the subjects with compassion and gallantry, as long as they paid their taxes!
Now you can pioneer the new chronicles of the realm with Castles and characters, played out by you, written by you. Become part of the future history; become part of the realm, become a ruler within CASTILION.
(Centuries of decay in a most inhospitable location, destroyed the Castle. Only a few stones remain to mark the once resplendent structure, leaving the vaults sealed for future historians.)
Luther and the Sword of Meridiem
The calming ocean waves ricochet off the hull of a boat commanded by Luther. A man that knows no bounds, he is tall in stature and has a recognisable scar across the right hand side of his face. He is a battle worn, born warrior. He has taken a few of his best men out into the Sea of Meridiem for an item that he holds dearly in his life, an item that he lost as a young man, an item that is said to have magical powers!
The crew on board have no idea where they are going, Luther has only told them what to do when the time calls. They are getting very restless, but they know not to speak out of turn so they continue the journey in silence. The sea breeze and the occasional seagull are the only sounds to be heard. Two men are discussing the possible objective of the trip.
‘Why are we on this god forsaken boat travelling further and further from land?’ Thorald said.
‘Quiet you fool! Luther doesn’t tolerate talking out of turn, you know that. Besides, what do you care? You’re getting paid, that’s all that matters.’ Replied Strabo.
‘I care because I’ve heard these seas can be very unforgiving, nobody knows what is out here.’ Thorald worriedly expresses.
Some of the crew members overhear this talk and decide to cut in.
‘What kind of ‘things’ occupy the waters apart from us and a few fish?’ Kallon enquires.
Thorald looks around to see if he has everyone’s attention.
‘An Aspidoceleon. It is the size of a whale, with a turtle like shell protecting its body, and to make matters worse. It has the head of a serpent.’
The crew members suddenly burst into laughter.
‘Are you serious? You have been reading far too many scrolls for your own good Thorald.’ Kallon said.
Luther, sitting in the lower deck, hears the commotion and decides to take action. He climbs onto the top deck to see his crew members surrounding Thorald, eagerly waiting for more exciting myths.
‘I was wondering why we had slowed down and now I can see. Why are you all surrounding Thorald as if he is suffering from scurvy?’ Luther rampages.
Luther watch the men scurry back like ants to their rowing places. He then turns to Strabo, who can’t hold his laughter any longer.
‘Is there something amusing, Strabo?’ Luther asks.
‘Well, sir. Thorald seems to think that there is a monster amongst the fish.’ Strabo answers.
‘A monster? Ha! Very funny Thorald, keeping morale up as usual I can see!’
‘But sir, I know it. I have seen it with my own eyes. Before I became a soldier I was a fisherman. We used to spend hours out at sea; I have seen my fair share of strange and wonderful beasts before, but nothing like this.’ Thorald explains.
‘Sounds like you caught too much sun Thorald, everyone back to work. We are getting closer.’ Luther orders.
The men continue to row in silence. Thorald is still adamant that he saw the monster and gets up from his seat. He goes over to turn Luther so he can talk to him.
Grabbing him, Luther turns and takes hold of Thorald, lifting him by his clothes.
‘Don’t you ever touch me; no one touches me unless they want to die.’ Luther yells.
He throws Thorald to the floor who scrambles back to his seat looking very nervous.
‘Let’s get this ship moving!’
Luther walks below deck.
‘I told you not to talk out of turn; he could have thrown you to the Aspidoceleon.’ Strabo said.
A smattering of hushed laughter is heard. Suddenly the boat starts to shake; the men can barely hold onto their oars, many of them fall into the sea. Below deck Luther feels the rocking and says to himself, ‘We’re here.’
He gets up and heads to the top deck.
‘Stay calm men, I know where we are.’
The boat starts to uncontrollably shake throwing men over board; Luther wraps his arm around some rope to steady himself.
‘Strabo, Thorald. Get your weapons out; I’m diving into the sea. If I bring any unwanted creatures back with me, you have to be ready to kill them!’ Luther orders.
He unhooks himself from the rope, takes his helmet and chest armour off and dives into the open water. Deeper and deeper Luther travels into the vast abyss of the sea. He looks around and finds what he is looking for, a sunken supply ship at the bottom of the ocean. A blinding red aura of light occupies his vision; he swims further and further down. The vibrations of the water get thicker and thicker, the light gets brighter and brighter the boat is now almost completely decayed apart from one chest, a chest no larger than a household table which glows a magnificent red. Luther grabs the handle of the chest and swims to the surface. He gets about five feet from the top when he is suddenly dragged down; the chest now feels heavier than a house. Luther looks down to see the problem. He looks directly into the jaws of a beast, a beast with two large, sharp fangs, a beast larger than anything ever seen before. Luther uses all his might, with the help of the low gravity pull of the sea to prize the chest from the grasp of the monster. He takes his dagger from his boot and thrusts it into the head of the monster; it looks like a pin in the head of a giant. He reaches the surface, chest in hand, breathing very deeply. Cheers ring out on deck.
‘Grab the chest!’ Luther said.
Strabo grabs the chest from the sea. The crew members shade their eyes; the blinding light is magnified in the light of day.
‘What is this chest, sir?’ Thorald asks.
‘There is no time for questions Thorald, that monster you told the men about. It’s real alright and I think I may have stolen its treasure! Everyone, grab a weapon and be prepared to fight.’
The men run to the weapons chest and grab every single weapon.
‘On my command, Kallon, Farbourne, throw your spears, I don’t know what we’re dealing with but if it’s anything like Thorald said, it’s going to strike.’
Everyone is waiting for the monster, they look nervous. No one knows just what to expect. The seas go quiet, the vibrating has stopped and the only sounds are the waves calmly hitting the boat… Boossh! The monster bears its head, it is exactly how Thorald described, the long, green serpent-like creature with fangs the size of the boat, blasts out of the water drenching the scared men, knocking most of them over.
‘Now! Throw the spears!’ Luther yelled.
Kallon and Farbourne hurl their spears, a direct hit right between the eyes of the beast. It did no damage however because the monsters head dwarfs the puny spears. The Aspidoceleon drops below sea level, beyond the sight of the crew.
‘What was that thing, sir?’ Strabo hurriedly asks.
‘I don’t know Strabo,’ Luther answers.
Thorald sinks to the floor, looking dejected, almost as if he has accepted his impending death.
‘The Aspidoceleon, I told you I had seen it!’ Thorald said.
‘Whatever it is, I’m sure it’s coming back to finish us off. It was guarding this’ Luther said.
With his sword he bangs on the chest which springs open, the red light still blinding. Luther grabs the item, which stops glowing. He raises a six foot long, gold and diamond encrusted sword, that glimmers in the light, as though it has never been touched. He can barely hold it for long as it is extremely heavy. When he puts it down the men gather round it, and stare with awe. As soon as they are about to get a good glimpse at it, the beast leaps out of the water and crashes into the boat, throwing most of the men over board. He gets his prize, swallowing Luther and returning to the depths of the sea.
‘Luther!’ Yelled Strabo.
The remaining men look over to see if they can find him, to no avail. They plug the holes, left by the monster with whatever they can find and wait, wait for something to bare it’s head. Beneath the water Luther is in the body of the monster, he is looking for the sword, which isn’t hard to see as it is now glowing. He grabs it, the glowing stops, but he can barely keep his hands on it as it is violently shaking in his grasp. The monster is thrashing and tossing as if the vibration of the sword is causing discomfort. The quick witted Luther realises this, and thrusts the sword into the roof of the monster’s stomach, the monster shakes uncontrollably and Luther grips the sword tighter than ever.
Above sea the men are grabbing their oars getting ready to set sail, as they assume the worst of Luther’s fate.
‘Look!’ Yelled Kallon.
The open sea beside the boat starts viciously shaking, a whirlpool creates a vast vortex, brewing, bubbling, and waiting to pop at any moment. BANG! Massive chunks of the Aspidoceleon shell spray into the air, 15 feet above the boat. Luther quickly follows them; he drops the now glowing sword and lands hard on his chest on the boat, he slowly turns over to see the sword dropping towards his face. He darts out the way just in time, as the sword pierces the boat glowing a brilliant, everlasting red. The men run over to help Luther up. Luther grabs the sword and pulls it free of the boat.
‘It is a sword that glows when it is not touched.’ Kallon said.
‘A sword that vibrates when submerged in water.’ Thorald added.
Luther looks around at the remaining men on the boat, and yells;
‘Men, this is what we have been searching for, this, is the sword of Meridiem!
The men cheer, with the sword glistening like a diamond in the rays of the sun.
The Attack of Parisham by the Great General Wolfstaffe
Bells were tolling, people were running and screaming, the small church community of Parisham was suddenly under attack. General Wolfstaffe bent on ruling every available piece of land was marching with his elite soldier army. It was only a matter of time before they arrived and there was nothing that could be done. As they grew closer and into formation General Wolfstaffe ordered his troops to remain quiet and raise their shields, any defences the humble priests have, they will use.
General Wolfstaffe turned back to look at the village when suddenly – Flup! An arrow plunges into the chest of the General, his cold dark eyes stare at the horizon in bewilderment. He grabs the arrow and pulls it from his chest; his soldiers are now banging loudly on their shields, intimidating whoever is behind the attack.
The sky rapidly darkens, the soldiers look up to see an array of flaming arrows heading in their direction. Wolfstaffe orders the troops to keep their shields high, thud, thud, thud! The arrows are smashing against the shields of the soldiers while Wolfstaffe calmly scopes the direction of the attack. He raises his sword and shouts;
The soldiers rush towards the village walls, arrows piercing soldiers, men falling to their knees. Wolfstaffe certainly didn’t expect a battle between the priests, and he didn’t get one. Tor bares his head over the castle walls.
‘Theo, come down here and fight me like a man!’ Yelled Wolfstaffe.
The arrows stop, Wolfstaffe’s men take a break and look for the wounded. The gate opens and Tor, Rondel dagger in hand, steps out to fight the general.
‘Your men need help; I will allow them to regain their breath’ Said Tor.
‘A foolish man helps his enemy’ replied Wolfstaffe.
‘A brute and murderer pays for his sins!’ Tor exaltedly replied.
Wolfstaffe throws down his shield and swings his sword at Tor. The sharp witted and quick Tor thwarts the attempt and thrusts his dagger into the leg of the General. Wolfstaffe laughs and swipes the hand of Tor, who is still gripping the dagger. He then slowly pulls it from his leg, whilst smiling at Tor.
‘This isn’t your battle boy; I came for the land, why would you help such peasants?’ Wolfstaffe said.
‘These are my people; Parisham is my home and you come with a single legion and think you can take it away from me?! I will not stand for such insolence.’ Tor replies.
His clenched fist slowly rises.
‘THESE ARE MY PEOPLE!’ Shouts Tor.
He then lowers it as fast as he can and out of nowhere enters a cavalry legion ready and willing to fight.
A cheer erupts throughout the battlefield. Wolfstaffe looks at the walls, archers are cheering, but also ready and aiming for Wolfstaffe. The cavalry have their arms drawn and will not back down. A chorus of shield batting from Wolfstaffe’s depleted men is drowned by deafening yells from Tor’s modest army.
‘I will be back, don’t think for one minute that you have won, Tor. I will leave in peace and hope you will let me collect my dead,’ said Wolfstaffe.
‘I will grant you that. Surprising how you only brought a band of soldiers with you today, Wolfstaffe. I didn’t expect a great, experienced General like you to underestimate even the smallest corners of our realm.’ Replied Tor.
‘Be prepared youngling, not many cross my path and get to tell the tale. I may have underestimated you but you should never underestimate me.’ Wolfstaffe threatens.
His troops turn and leave Parisham, embarrassed and demoralised.
Sharing the Wealth
Jaunty music plays in the great hall of Cronest, many men and women are enjoying the flowing wine and food that decorate large tables. Amongst the party goers are Walter, Clarence and Princess. Walter and Clarence are at the head of the table, they are discussing their wealth and power. Clinking of wine goblets spray wine over the table.
‘I hear you have been displaying your might and power across the realm, how were the spoils?’ Walter asks Clarence.
‘Marvellous friend, I have just recently claimed Koninklijke Wacht to my growing list of followers. The castle was modest, but far too small for my people.’
‘Did they put up a fight?’
‘It was a drawn out battle in the hills of Kuthrah, lots of sneak attacks forced me to change my tactics regularly, and they fought well. Have you been expanding your territory?’ Clarence asks.
‘I made a march to Ironclad, knowing that Wolfstaffe had taken his army further afield.’
‘And?’ Enquired Clarence.
‘The fool took one legion to Parisham, everybody knows the priests have Tor, and as expected his army failed at the gates.’
‘The mighty Wolfstaffe stopped by Tor and some priests; I laugh so hard wine may come out of my nose!’
‘The priests took refuge in the church, word is, Tor has an army comparable to any other leader in the realm. We shouldn’t underestimate him like Wolfstaffe did,’ replied Walter.
‘Interesting, it seems we have an up and comer in our midst. Have you found success in Ironclad yet? Can you call it your own?’ Clarence asks.
‘I took a small troop of scouts to set up camp in the mountainous ranges of Errotak; I believe he has left that old wallowing excuse for a King in charge of the army, you know; Stanly,’ replies Walter.
‘How quickly can Wolfstaffe get back to Ironclad?’ Clarence asks.
‘Within two days, I have sent an owl out to track his location, if what is said is true; Wolfstaffe took his best men with him to Parisham, leaving untrained men and peasants to defend. If I can muster up my forces I can take Ironclad and crush Stanly like a bug’. Walter explains.
The two men look at each other, whilst eating a great number of chicken legs; their smiles spread from ear to ear. Clarence stands up and waves Princess over.
‘Walter, this is Princess the undisputed leader of my elite cavalry legions.’
Princess goes over to shake the hand of Walter and sits down.
‘So Princess, have you travelled with Clarence to conquer many lands?’ Asks Walter.
‘I have been with him every step of the way, my men show no fear. I have created the strongest armour in the land.’ Princess excitedly replied.
‘That is impressive, you know my army could do with a strong cavalry unit, I am currently scouting out Ironclad and I would like you to join me, you also Clarence.’
‘I thought you’d never ask, my men are waiting in your barracks, it would be an honour to help you.’ Replied Clarence.
‘Excellent. I wish to simply walk into the city and ransack the castle, Stanly won’t know what hit him.’ Explains Walter.
Princess stands abruptly.
‘Let us go now! We are ready!’ Shouts Princess.
Walter turns to Princess, smiling in her direction. He turns to talk to Clarence.
‘She has hunger that I have never experienced before, Clarence.’
He then looks at Princess
‘Patience, my dear is a virtue. We attack at dawn.’
Walter slams his goblet on the table and laughs, Clarence and Princess laughing along with him.
Tess managed to escape a terrible regime far to the East of Errotak. Many leagues from home she wandered aimlessly after her exile and bitter clash with her father King ? Wanting a son was paramount in his mind and treated any female, including his own daughter, with distain. Tess vowed to prove her father wrong, even if she never saw him again!
Travelling west she learnt skills forced upon her through desperation. Making a crude bow from a Hazel tree, stringing it with animal intestine and carving arrows from Birch using the only knife she owned, she was able to catch larger prey.
Tess became so accurate with her homemade weapon she was able to drop a sparrow from 100 yards. The biggest prize was a wild Boar and very proudly made a helmet from its tusks. Little did she know but this would become invaluable as she ventured into the realm of Castilion.