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The Saga of Stormblade
Chapter V - Knight Fall

By Johnny Tai, (C) 2008

Thanks for reading. This story takes place in the world of Alter Aeon, a MUD/Multi-User Dungeon game. Pharel Stormblade is my character, and I thank you for loving and not stealing him. For those not involved with the game, this story might not make much sense. In the world of AA, people get a new life every time they are killed, thus, in truth, people don't stay dead. However, death does bring the loss of experience points, gold, and honor in some cases, so is not to be taken lightly. The fighting terms such as 'devastate,' 'demolish,' and 'massacre' all came from the game itself. Though I know this makes casual reading rather painful, I am trying to keep as much of what happened in the game in the story without having to edit/change things. So when a person 'devastate' another with his/her slash, just use your own imagination to fill that in, as we all have to do in the game.

Happy reading,

*Entrance to the cleric's guild*

"Omphhhh!" the knight templar hit the floor hard, mortally wounded.

"Where, is, the, Unholy, Knight?!" I hissed through clenched teeth, the blade of my sword biting into the flesh of the templar's neck.

"What's thy business with him?" The man gasped, trying to inch his neck away from my bone blade.

I laughed at that. This man, defeated and dying, was demanding to know my reason for seeking the Unholy Knight? But then, I had no need to hide my reason, so I humored the dying man. "I seek revenge," I said.

"Revenge?" the man was not a quitter.

"He killed a dear friend of mine, Beale, a man of much honor, and although Beale has been brought back to live, I am going to finish his battle."

The man spat on the ground, "Beale do be a thief, thus has no honor to speak of!"

Well, at least he got a point... "I ask not your judgment, I ask for the Unholy Knight!" I growled, pressing my blade harder against his flesh.

The templar winced and blurted out, "P...poor Alley!"

I removed my blade from the man's neck and helped him to stand. "Grateful for your help."

"Willst thou spare my life?" he asked hopefully.

"Of course," I grinned and sheathed my sword. Holding out my hand to him, I muttered the spell beneath my breath. "Of course, not!" His death cry could be heard from miles away as a ball of crackling electricity fried him gleefully. Sacrificing his corpse and sword, I vanished into the shadows of the night. "The knight will fall."

*Poor Alley*

Walking into the alley, I immediately found my target. Still wounded from his battle against Beale, the knight was sitting on the front steps of Filthy's Inn, resting. Walking up to him, I casted a few spells and cured all his wounds. He looked up in surprise, yet did not seem to be ready to thank me. "How dare ye touch me with thy simple spells?" he snapped irritatedly.

I did not answer him, for all I wanted was to have him fight me on even ground. Carefully, I considered the man. He was powerfully built and looked as if he could hurt me a lot more than I could, given the chance. His armors, fancy as they were, were no defense against my weapons. The knight glared at me, and all his proud eyes saw was a tired warrior of indeterminate age. "Do you feel lucky, punk?" he mocked.

Silently, I began to mouth the few spells I always use prior to battle. As the spells kicked in, I undergone a great change: My size doubled and redoubled as magically enhanced strength flowed through my muscles. I started to move at the speed of lightning as my dexterity increased. A strong force shield surrounded me, followed by a white aura of sanctuary. I felt the goddess watching over and protecting me as I mouthed the bless and armor spells. Then, the transformation was completed after a quick spell of displacement and stone skin.

The knight's eyes opened wide. He was too proud to feel fear, yet he was smart enough to feel a trace of hesitation. Resting my hand on the hilt of my sword, I issued the challenge.

"Hm!" he sniffed, "I don't accept just any challenge from a nameless rogue!" Turning his head, he refused to face me.

"Well then," I said and saluted him. Walking past him, I suddenly stopped and leaned close to him. "I, wasn't, asking!" I whispered in his ear, and with a quick gesture, I drew and placed my tanto dagger in the gap between his shoulder blades.

With a violent oath, he leapt to his feet, flame streaming out of the wound in his back where the enchanted dagger had been. Surprisingly, my attack did not hurt him as much as it had angered him. With the ferocity of a cornered buffalo, he attacked. Although I was ready to face this Unholy Knight, I was not prepared for the strength and speed he displayed. In two exchanges, I was backed into the wall, too busy to defend myself to even draw my sword. I lashed out with my tanto with an underhand slash, which he deflected with one gauntleted fist, and before I could switch stance, a gloved fist devastated me. Stars exploded before my eyes as the Unholy Knight's hard fist connected with my jaw with obliterating force. Ducking beneath one massacring blow, I did not see the sweeping leg in time to move my foot. Down I went like a sack of potatoes. Before I could roll out of the way, the knight was upon me.

Before I could roll out of the way, the knight was upon me. I managed to raised my shield in time to parry a blow which came at me with the strength of a stone giant, yet his next blow struck me in the chest and I gasped painfully for air. A savage kick from the knight sent me rolling to the side and crushing into the alley wall. I was quickly losing this battle. Through my fog of pain, I saw a pair of eyes gazing out at the scene from between two buildings. The eyes, though filled with pain and sorrow, held a sense of blank determination that only those of great faith would possess. The girl... The eyes belonged to that orc girl who lived in this alley and sold heart necklaces for a living. She was watching... She wouldn't give up, and nor, would, I!!!!!

Putting all my force into it, I kicked my foot out and tripped the raging knight who fell to his knees with a muttered curse. Leaping to my feet, I extended my right palm forward as if to greet the knight, "Shazam!!!!!" and three bolts of lightning flew from my hand to blast him. Dancing back, away from his powerful swing, I dropped the dagger, reached down and unhooked the mace of Chaos and Destruction from my weapon belt. Lifting the mace, I shouted, "For Blackwind!" and glided forth to meet my foe. Bringing the mace crushing down, I demolished him with my first blow as he foolishly tried to parry with his fist. A bolt of ice shot from my left palm and hit him point blank in the chest. He staggered backward and raised his hands to shield his face. I leapt forward and swung the mace around and ***massacred*** him.

The table had been turned, but the Unholy Knight was not so easily downed. Coming out of his shock, he blasted forth with both fists and I found myself on the defense once more as he dismembered, devastated, and disemboweled me with a quick series of strikes.

"Enough!" I roared as everything turned red before me as the bloodfever took hold of me and I went berserk in battle! Blazing forth like the wind of death itself, I forgot to parry or dodge, and met the knight hit for hit. The next few minutes became blurred as my '***massacre***' met his 'devastate', my '***demolish***' met his 'decimate', and so on.

Finally, the Unholy Knight's wounds seemed to catch up with him as he slowed down and began to weaken. I however, had become one with my mace, and jumped in for a combo of leaping attack, roundhouse kick, and a beautiful body slam which mortally wounded the knight.

Lying on the bloody alley ground, the Unholy Knight looked up into the face of his executioner and mouthed, "Wh...who are you?"

"I am," I said, panting and lifting the mace high, "Pharel Stormblade of Blackwind!" With these final words, I brought the mace down in a deadly arc which ended the battle with a ***massacre*** which split the knight's helm and head in two.

The battle had ended and the knight fallen. As I re-attached the mace to my belt, I staggered and had to lean myself against the alley wall for support. On top of losing more than half of my blood in this battle, my limbs had turned to jelly the second my bloodfever faded. Looking over at the junction between two buildings, I saw the orc girl came out of hiding and smiled shyly at me.

"Want to buy a heart necklace, Sir Knight?"

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