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PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2005 11:29 pm  Reply with quote

He had heard that a warrior was in town. Not just any warrior though, -the- warrior. The epitome of everything that battlecraft stood for. Armus could hardly wait to meet the man, and challenge him. After all, Armus had not been beaten in years, and he had fought against the best.

After strapping on his trusty scale-mail and grabbing the razor-sharp axe at his bedside, Armus headed out of his inn suite, locking the door behind him. He stepped down the grand staircase of the inn with an air of nobility about him, and many an eye turned his way to view the great warrior clad in shimmering armor. But Armus' own eyes found no armor before him. Instead, a monster of a man sat at a table in the corner, hungrily tearing in to a leg of lamb.

Armus strode up to him confidantly, and as he approached he realized that the man - fully eight feet tall - kept a large and ornate carved club near him as he ate. The man wore a harness of leather armor, but the leather seemed almost unnesisary on the man's thickly muscled body. Armus stood silently, waiting for the man to acknowledge him. The man payed Armus no heed, though, and continued to tear into his leg of lamb.

After a moment, Armus shifted his weight and coughed, then spoke out loud, so that everyone in the inn's dining area could hear, "Greetings, Kind sir. My name is Armus, and I am a traveling warrior, not unlike yourself. I have heard many things about you..." Armus was cut off as the large man waved his hand.

"You want to fight, then?" The large man said in a deep, booming voice. A voice that reminded Armus of a growling bear. "I do." Was Armus' reply. The large man set his leg of lamb down then. He wiped his face clean with the leather on his forearm and stood, making the inn seem almost too small for the towering eight-foot man.

"Do you know who I am?" the man boomed, and Armus nodded. "You are Barten the Unconquerable, are you not?"

the man looked to him. "Of my many names. that is the most common. Many like yourself have come to me in search of battle, and they recieved what they wanted." Silence fell over the room as every eye turned to Barten the Unconquerable, and it stayed silent for a long moment before Barten made to speak again.

"I have been called many names, from Unconquerable to Destroyer to Scourge of Kings. A thousand men have fought me, and a thousand men have fallen by my hands. For I have never lost a battle, nor any other contest of strenght and skill. Still, do you wish to fight me?

"Great kings have sent for me, and I have refuesed. Great kings sent armies against me, and have lost them. Great kings have died at my hand while their crippled armies stand by to nurse the injured and save the dying and burry the dead. Still, do you wish to fight me?

"I do not fear death, for I have fought him and won against him. Wrestled him with my bare hands 'till the old man finally gave. I fear no man, and no thing. Even fear itself has found cowardice in my presence, and seeked to hide behind weaker men. Still, do you wish to fight me?

"I've travled to the edge of the very world, and looked down into the depths of the great void, of wich everything exists and nothing returns. I have ventured into the very bowels of Hell to play cards with The Devil, soul for soul. Yet I stand here now, and it is The Devil who owes his soul to me. Still, do you wish to fight me?

"Both angels from the heavens and demons from below have come against me, and yet even these mighty creatures have fallen 'gainst me. I say mighty, for they survived the longest blow for blow. I am both worshiped as a god and scorned as a curse, praised for my glories and banished for my sins. Still, I ask once more, do you wish to fight me?

"Thunder has struck me, fire has burned me, water has drowned me and stone has burried me, but I stand before you today. Even the mighty heroes of old have steped forth to spar, and still I remain undefeated. Even the gods themselves have steped up to do battle, and I yet remain unconquered. And yet, you still wish to fight me."

Armus looked up at Barten, he looked into the warrior's deep blue eyes. And then Armus shuddered. He knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that this man told the truth.

"Stand down now, Armus," Barten said, his voice ever calm, and at the same time deeply menacing. "Stand down now, and no one shall think the worse of you. You are a great warrior, Armus, this I can see. But I beg you, stand down."

They both stood for a moment, silently looking into each other's eyes. Finally, Armus slowly shook his head. "I can not stand down. I must try." And then Barten sighed, and took up his carven wood club. "Very well, Armus. Many like yourself have come to me in search of battle, and they recieved what they wanted. I shall not deny you."

The two went outside then, out in the road where they could do their business. They both took places at an end of the Inn, and after a moment, they charged. Armus swung his powerful axe, but it wen't flying from his grip when Barten grabed the blade and flung it. Armus went flying then, when Barten's carven club slammed into his side. He could feel ribs shatter as he flew through the air, and he landed in a heap in the middle of the road. His breath was labored, and his vision was blurred and darkening fast. He could feel the leg and arm he had landed on was broken, and his broken collarbone stuck out through his skin, allowing blood to flow freely into his armor.

Barten steped up to him then, and kneeled beside him. "You are dying, Armus. You will die here, in this road, like so many who have come before you. But like so many who have come before you, I will not forget you." "I know," Armus said weekly. He could feel the strength leaving him, "I thank you, Barten the Unconquerable."

And with that, he died.

And Barten took up his club. And he took up Armus. He walked him to the towne square, and there he set the warrior on a low stone pillar. He left him there, and with a moment of silence for the fallen warrior, he moved off down the road and out of the town.
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2005 11:51 am  Reply with quote

Thanks Thoth, that's just what I needed. Your story allowed me to 'leave' work for a couple of minutes. I enjoyed it.
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2005 9:52 pm  Reply with quote

your welcome. This is (in my oppinion) one of my best pieces to date. Not saying my other stuff is that great, but this one I like.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2005 2:44 pm  Reply with quote

Only one word can describe that story there, incredible. Kudos with gusto my man.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 02, 2005 9:57 pm  Reply with quote

Thank ye too, Beest. post somethin you've done lately.
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