ÔÔRings Guild ContestÔÔ- One Ring, One Body

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ÔÔRings Guild ContestÔÔ- One Ring, One Body

Postby Arcmagus » Tue Feb 21, 2006 12:08 pm

One Ring... One Body

Gandalf had described the One Ring as not needing to be cared for by its bearer, of having a will of its own. Well, we the Master Ring Holders have learned that this trait was not unique to the One Ring. Our Rings of the Elements have this potential as well. Some of the Bearers have discovered and cultivated this trait, letting the Ring develop a full personality and sometimes letting the Ring manifest to a full material body.

my Dark Ring Esteman was the first to truly present himself like this. And he has certainly used this to the most advantage.
1) This is the start of a series of posts between Windy and myself. Esteman takes physical form, as does LadyG's Ninniach.
2) This was in response to CassieBaggins's Ring Action two posts up from mine.
3) This is not directly related to a Ring forming a material body, but shows how versatile the Ring's abilities can be made.

WindWalker has found the actuallised form of his Air Ring, Zephiron.
1) Zephiron takes shape

Sigal (Quimrill_Renctar) took an interesting twist during the failed Rings Guild RP: that his Ring gained awareness and overthrew his mind, taking the body for its own.

Now you probably have thought that, while interesting, what does this have to do with the contest? Quite simply, everything! The challenge is to create a personality for your Ring and it's growth to develop a full Ring Body.

Now, of course, in any contest there are some rules.
1) All the basic rules regarding the handling of Rings that are set down in the First Post still apply. If you want to use another person's Ring, you need that person's permission and permission of the MRHs. (I'm sorry, but hooking jumper cables from another Ring won't work. Forget the idea now.)

2) We want this to be a test of your creative skills. So this will be a story-telling contest. You may write this in free verse, epic poem, prose, narrative, or other story-telling method I've not listed above.

3) Judging will take place by voting. Because many Ring Bearers are Bards and vice versa, the voting will be opened up to the Bards Guild as well as this one.

4) Oh yeah, you have to be a member of the Rings Guild. It's not that hard to join.


LOCATION
The actual contest will take place in the Scriptorium Forums. The guild thread will be used for OOC questions, discussion, and whatever we normally do here.


CONCERNING THE WRITING
While I am loathe to place any restrictions on the writing for your entries, I am going to place one final restriction on the entries. Each entry must be at least 3 posted chapters. It's not quite fair if one person spends 5 LONG posts setting up their Ring's awakening and someone else does in 2 little paragraphs. Use the previous contest as a guide to your own length.

The contest will be begin Wednesday, 22 Feb 2006 at midnight. These rules are also posted in Post#2 of the Rings Guild.
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Postby Gloamglozer » Tue Feb 21, 2006 2:16 pm

The darkness was complete. He pushed and pushed against the confines of his prison. Those terrible walls that crushed and tortured his essence. Ever since his sudden birth he had lived inside his cell. Every so often he was called forth. He would do some feat of magic and, once his power had been harnessed, he would be forced back into the dark, dank dungeon of his life.

Gloamglozer was wondering through the corridors of the AHUR. He fingered his ring, Koftubel, as he walked. He was content in life. Everything was going well. His familiar Sasha had been returned to him after five years of death. That was his only regret of late, that he hadn’t been able to defeat the enemy that had sent his friend into the abyss.

As the ancient shapeshifter stepped out onto the great indoor field of the Ring Bearers he noticed a far away feeling. It felt as though a person stood on a far away moon had died of a broken heart and their soul had found its way through the highways of the universe and had ended up inside Gloam’s head. He reached out with his mind, trying to find what it was. But the thin tendrils of the pained creature shot back as if they were afraid of Gloam. He was no stranger to this but it felt as though a part of him had ran away.

Gloam shook his head and carried on walking until he reached the tree of Sanctuary. There he sat on the cool grass and drew two runes onto a piece of parchment that he got out of his robes. The runes glowed bright green and disappeared, taking the parchment with it.

The being frowned in thought and took out a small vial of blue liquid, a pestle and mortar and a couple of leaves from an unknown plant. He mixed the liquid in with the leaves and grinded them together. Once he had done this, he poured a drop into the palm of his hand and swirled it around with a finger. The green/blue paste shimmered and burst into fire. Gloam yelped and hit his hand, putting it out. The black mark on his hand quickly disappeared. But the ancient being had had enough. He wanted to know what was happening.

He had almost touched him. How much he hurt when he came near. The prisoner didn’t dislike the guard. Infact he liked him very much. It wasn’t his fault that he had been imprisoned in his cell. It never is the guard. It’s the judge. He had had enough. How long had he been hurt. How long had he been in here. How could he get out. He would look for any chance, any way that he could escape. Once he did he would tell the guard…tell him that he was innocent.
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Postby skuld » Wed Feb 22, 2006 10:53 am

So this story ties in a lot of the past of my character.
There are three different characters, whom I would like define a little bit about before you get into my story.

: )

1. Raven: a human.
2. Skuld, a Norn, and in the end a Valkyrie. There were three Great Norns who were sisters. Skuld, the youngest, Verdandi, and Urd, the oldest. They were the Goddesses of Fate. The Valkyries (“Choose of the Slain) were woman who served Odin or Freyja (the goddess of Sexuality, Death and Beauty) as Angels of Death.
3. Faust, a Vanir warrior, servant of Freyja, and Skuld’s Darkness, or
soul mate.

Having a little background into their origins, let’s now get into the thick of things.

Admission

Remember to turn the volume up on those speakers and enjoy!

I hope you enjoy, and GOOD LUCK to everyone!
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Postby Gloamglozer » Wed Feb 22, 2006 1:10 pm

Gloamglozer, the shapeshifter and bearer of the Air ring of Evil Fliers Koftubel, had a mystery on his hands. A foreign entity had tried to touch his mind. It hadn’t been dangerous, far from it, it had been in pain. He sighed and smiled as he saw a black wolf walk up to where he was stood, under the tree of sanctuary.

“Ah. Sasha. How’re you going.” he said as she lay down on the grass next to where he stood.

“Fine Gloam.” she looked up then around. After a short silence she continued. “I felt it too. It was so sad. Whatever it was, it is suffering. But the weird thing is it felt so familiar.”

As her soft voice faded away Gloam knelt down and stroked her back. “I know. I have tried both of the highest tracking spells I know and all they’ve given me is a burnt hand and a waste of parchment. I just wish I knew what it was.”

He looked into her eyes. “There is only one thing left. I’ll have to do the Rite of Tuhrik.”

The Rite of Tuhrik was the most powerful search and retrieve spell in the entire world. Your mind is probably spinning with pictures of candles and skulls. But non of this is needed for the Rite. The only thing that is needed is your own blood and a map of the stars. So Gloam had got an astrology map and rolled it out on the field. He took out a knife, cut his hand and let a single drop fall. The drop didn’t hit the map but hovered above it. The blood congealed and turned into a small arrow which, instead of its normal frantic spinning, turned with purpose to face Gloam.

The pain. His essence was being pulled out of his cell. This is a good thing., he was going to escape for a while. But it meant that he would be near his guard. The pain caused by this far outweighed the pain he suffered in his cell. He just wished that it didn’t hurt.


The shapeshifter fingered his ring. This shouldn’t be happening. He wasn’t in pain. He was never in pain.

*****RING ACTION*****

It was then that he realised the bright flash of red coming from Koftubel. The light filled an invisible mould and left a hazy red dragon behind. The dragon almost collapsed, but stayed up. It held out its hands to Gloam, who was still in shock. He quickly snapped out of it though when the dragon began to talk.

“My guard and friend. You have no idea how I suffer when you call me. You have no idea that I am a prisoner in your ring. You have no idea…”

“No” said Gloam

The dragon flickered in and out of focus.

“I was born in my prison. To serve you.”

“No!”

“The metal poisons my essence. I wish to be free. I wish to…”

The dragon began to fade quicker and quicker.

“I will help you Koftubel. I will find out what’s happening!” shouted Gloam

“I know you will my friend” whispered the spirit of the ring.

The dragon faded and turned into a bright beam of red light which was sucked back into the silver ring.

*****END RING ACTION*****

“NO!” shouted Gloamglozer. “No” he whispered as he fell onto his knees.

Sasha ran over to him. Her nose touched him on the arm. “I had no idea Sasha. I had no idea” he whispered in a pained voice while he stared at his ring, which was resting on the grass in front of him.
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Postby Caligo » Thu Feb 23, 2006 3:05 pm

Chapter 1
(The Wondering Soul)

In a distant land full of dread and fear there lurked one of the most evil spirits of all time. It wondered the land like a lost soul, with a black heart and poison breath, killing anyone and everything in its path, taking their soul for it's self. It was neither alive nor dead, and had no body, save for it's piercing red and yellow eyes. The only way to distinguish it was by the black cloak that covered it from head to toe, and the black smoky like substance that floated around it. Everywhere it went there was fear, agony and pain, as it sucked the life of every living thing keeping their soul to become like him and do his bidding.

A group of brave warriors gathered together and joined forces. They vowed to protect one another and all they fought for. This worked for many years. They conquered lands, and destroyed evil slowly bringing the land back to peace.

The evil wondering soul saw this and was not pleased. He sent his minions to attack and defeat these warriors, but none were successful. Furious the spirit decided to face these men himself in a battle of his army against theirs. He sent word to them to be prepared to fight, for he would bring war upon them within a day. Franticly the warriors gathered their troops and met the evil wonderer on the battlefield. He had a huge army of the lost souls that he had taken over the many years. The men were terrified as they saw so many of these dark creatures descend the hill coming at them. But the worst of all was the spirit leader who came at them full force, reeking in an evil stench so bad that even the grass beneath his feet turned black and died. The brave warriors had never before faced such and evil being and were for the first time scared to death. They looked at each other and nodded. They all knew that there was no turning back now. They must defeat this enmity!

Cal
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Postby Gloamglozer » Thu Feb 23, 2006 3:29 pm

Koftubel was happy for the first time in his life. He had actually got to speak to his friend and master. The spirit felt the pain of the prison lessen slightly. Gloamglozer would find out why this had happened to him and open the door to his cell. The ring knew this deep down in his essence. His guard may have been pure evil at one time. But he wasn’t anymore.

Sasha had never seen Gloam like this before. She was part of his soul and him, hers. But through the entire length of time they had known each other she had never seen him cry. She felt sad as well. Afterall seeing anybody wrongfully imprisoned was a disgrace.

You may well laugh at this seeing as though Gloam was an evil being who imprisoned anybody he could. But actually he didn’t. He never, ever imprisoned anybody who didn’t deserve it. She looked at him kneeling there over the ring, with several tears running down his face.

A minute later he wiped his eyes with a piece of cloth from out of his robe, got up and walked off. Sasha padded quickly after him and just caught what he said.
“I am going to find out why Koftubel is imprisoned inside the ring. Then I’m going to get him out.”

He walked quicker and Sasha noticed that his outline was wavering. This always happened when he was mad. His most ferocious forms tried to shape themselves. Most times he held them under check but other times he would let them loose, to let off steam.

He didn’t have time for any shapeshifting now so, as he walked through the doors of the AHUR’s archive room, his form solidified. Gloam didn’t have time to look for the right book either so he just called out to it in his magical language. Several seconds later a extremely old and thick leather bound book came whizzing from an aisle and landed on a desk.

Gloam sat down at the desk and carefully placed the ring down on the wooden top. He opened the book and quickly flicked through its crumbling pages until he found what he was looking for.

It was a section about how the power of the rings was attained and it said nothing about the imprisonment of any spirits. He called for another book and another. But they all said the same thing. All of the rings of power contained spirits that were created at the same time of the ring. This was why the rings only had one specific area with which they would use. The spirits of the rings were beings of that specific area of magic.

Gloam slumped in the chair. If no spirits were imprisoned then what had happened to Koftubel. He had to know what had happened to free him. The black wolf laid her head on his lap and he absent-mindedly stroked her muzzle.

“You’ll find a way Gloam. You always do. If it takes a day or a millennia, you’ll get him out.” Sasha’s soft voice crept across his mind, calming him down.

“But that’s the thing Sasha. It can’t take a millennia. He’s suffering right now as we sit here.” He looked at the silver ring with its carvings of evil flying creatures on it. Their eyes were made of ruby and he could see Koftubel in there, through the precious gems. In his prison of metal. His essence constantly burnt and re-built.

Some say that at the lowest point in someone’s life hope isn’t far away. Gloam couldn’t believe this right now. He had never believed in anything. But hope was further away from him now than it had ever been.

How wrong can one person be.
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Postby Caligo » Fri Feb 24, 2006 10:38 pm

Chapter 2
(The Great Battle)

The battle raged for three long days, both sides relentless to give up. The great warriors were worn-out, tired and at their wits end. One night when they were in their camp they talked to each other about what could be done to overcome this enemy. Everything they had tried thus far had failed and they had lost many men. "If we cannot destroy him and his army," one of them was saying, "then maybe we can trap him within some sort of substance? Harness their power, to use it for better things. These creatures are very evil yes, but they are also very powerful. If we could rather capture their very souls, their being with in something and use that power we may finally be able to bring the land back to peace." They continued to talk about this idea and the more they did, the more they came to realize how ingenious it was.

"I have the perfect form, of substance we can use." Said another, "we could forge a great ring of power, with a magical diamond in the middle in which we will trap the creature and all his minions. Then the wearer of the ring will be able to harness that power and call it forth when needed." They all agreed to this and began work on forging the ring.

The evil spirits could see that the great warriors were up to something from their camp and knew that it couldn't mean anything good for them. They also plotted and planed against the humans and devised a plan that would assure them victory when the battle continued the following day.

"There it is complete." A warrior held up the finished ring. It had a gold band with an eagle on one side and a scorpion on the other that both reach up holding a small diamond like stone. "The eagle represents truth, justice, and freedom. While the scorpion represents poison, death, and malice. They both hold the diamond, which represents the great land that we fight to protect. This is a magical diamond that had great power but needs someone to call on it and needs and essence to fill it. There is one thing however, it will only respond to the bearer and it will choose who it wants its bearer to be."

The sun rose and the warriors gathered their weapons and headed onto the battlefield to complete the task. When they arrived there were only a few of the spirits gathered on the other side. They stopped in fear of where the others might be hiding and what they had planned. Suddenly they heard a noise from behind and turned to see what it was. The group of wondering souls had fallen back and spread out around back of the warriors and now were coming at them from all angles. It was no use they were trapped!

Cal
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Postby Gloamglozer » Sat Feb 25, 2006 7:03 am

The pain around Koftubel was lessening by the minute. His cell was becoming brighter and airier. If he hadn’t suffered so much in its walls he would have said that it looked more like a real room than anything. Not the dark place of his life. He just hoped that it would continue becoming lighter.

The Ancient being that was Gloamglozer dared to break his gaze away from the ring. His dare was to be rewarded though, because out of the corner of his eye he saw the one word he had been looking for.

Imprisonment was written on a page of a small black book which had been written by a Haradrim ring bearer. He had thrown open the book to look at the pages concerning the making of the rings. But he hadn’t looked at the pages concerning the interaction between bearer and ring. The pages had obviously flipped back to that particular position in the book with the tendency that most pages in books have.

Gloam read the pages and dropped the book.

It spun round and round until it hit the oak floor of the archive. He jumped up from the chair and ran out of the room with Sasha following close behind. He burst out into the field and stopped.

The wolf almost ran into the back of his legs but her mind connection with him prevented her, with an inch to spare. She walked round to his side and sat down on the grass. “What the heck are you doing Gloam” she said.

“It was me. I was the one who made him suffer. I imprisoned him.”

“What are you talking about. You wouldn’t have imprisoned Koftubel.”

“I didn’t do it on purpose. It was my subconscious that did it. My pure evil.” he spat the word when once he would have praised it.

“That’s still not you though Gloam. Not you deep down. Further down than your stupid sub conscious.”

“Well it doesn’t matter anymore because I’m going to release him.”


*****RING ACTION*****

Gloam placed his ring back onto his right, index finger and raised it up.

“Koftubel! I release you from your prison. From now on you will no longer be kept in darkness and in pain. But in the light of your own joy. Take form here in your birthplace for I am deeply sorry for what I have done to you.”

The ring glowed bright red and a bright beam of red light shot out of the band of metal and hit the floor of the AHUR. From there it flowed upwards creating a small whirlwind with pictures of flying creatures spinning around inside it. After a minute the whirlwind subsided and Koftubel was stood there, fully brought to life in human form. He was a muscular man around 6 foot tall. But he looked as if a dragon was just beneath the skin. His face was slightly elongated, his arms and legs were lean and ended in more claw like apertures than fingers and toes. If you looked close enough his skin was also very slightly red. This was also true about his hair which was quite long and was blood red in colour. His most striking feature was his red tail that ended in a spear like shape. He wore a long black and red coat over a white shirt and black pants. The spirit incarnate looked at Gloamglozer and talked properly for the first time in a deep rich voice which sounded like every evil flying creature throughout history.

“You have released me from my prison master. I do not know how I will ever repay you.”

Gloam stepped forward and put his hand on Koftubel’s shoulder.

“Do not call me master. Never call me master, we are equals. Not even that infact because I am less than you. My very subconscious was keeping you in that terrible prison while you were inside the ring and made your essence burn when I called you out. But no longer. From now on you may take form here in the world whenever you like. In fact. I will release you from the ring here and now if you feel as though you cannot have me as your bearer.”

Koftubel smiled as Gloam removed his arm from his shoulder.

“Gloamglozer. It was not your fault. Just look at what you have done for me since you found out about my imprisonment. You have set me free and my world inside the ring is a paradise. I will never leave you because I know now that we are inseparable. You are my bearer and you will be forever.”

Sasha looked up at the humanoid dragon.

“You see Gloam. It wasn’t you who imprisoned him. You know. I already like you Koftubel. I think we’re going to get along really well.”

The wolf and the spirit smiled at each other. Both had mouths full of razor sharp teeth.

Gloamglozer finally looked up.

“Thank you Koftubel.”

“What for. You are the one who released me. My essence is already repaired. I feel fresh. Reborn.”

Koftubel stopped speaking for a moment. He looked at the ring on Gloam’s hand and continued.

“The ring is calling me back and I am going to answer. For now I want to wallow in the bright and pain free environment of my new paradise inside that band of metal.”

The man winked at both of them and disappeared in a flash of red light.

Leaving the sound of joyous laughter behind.

*****END RING ACTION*****

Gloam and Sasha looked at each other and started to laugh as well.

“We did it Sasha!” shouted Gloam. “He’s free!”

The wolf leaped up into Gloam’s arms. This was a rare occurrence but she shared Gloam’s jubilation.
Both of them looked at the ring as she jumped back down onto the cool grass. The rubies seemed to glow with an inner light, when once they were dull and full of terror.

“Now what do you say to a bottle of my special punch Sasha.” Gloam said as he walked off the field. He would tell the other ring bearers the story and then he would write it down, so that future generations of evil ring bearers would know what to do if the same thing happened to them.

All Gloam could do is hope that it never did.

Koftubel wallowed in the paradise of the ring. Pure light surrounded him and constantly repaired his essence. The very walls of his heaven emanated joy and laughter and Koftubel could feel the radiant power of his connection with Gloamglozer.

Life was good....and it intended to stay that way.
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Postby Monoceros » Sat Feb 25, 2006 10:57 am

The dusk burned out and the young crescent came into the full reign upon the sleepy land. Mono opened her eyes as the last weak sun ray slipped over the tops of the trees biding everyone and everything goodnight and faded away.

Others were waking up as well and someone was already preparing meal before last march to the caves where the followers of the Cult were said to be hiding. Mono gathered her things and loaded them up on her horse. Then she joined a group of her companions sitting around a small camp fire and eating. They were discussing the same questions for last six months, wouldn’t that be another mistake and they will lose their precious time in the search of the Cult? What if they were provided with wrong information?

“We have to check every single rumor,” Mono said patiently, the words she had been repeating for last year too often.

“You always say so,” grumbled young Gondorian, Kilian.

Mono sighed and kept silence, people were already too tired and desperate in the search of the Cult, and she didn’t want to quarrel with them again. She felt the Chief’s look upon her and immediately came up to him. He pointed to the log next to him and she sat down. He was quite for several minutes as if thinking of something else and not paying attention to her, but she knew him quite well and didn’t interrupt the flow of his mind.

Then he finally said, “Don’t argue with them. My people are like dry grass now, any spark can set fire.”

She nodded, but then said, “But their words do have sense, what if it’s another wrong trace?” She wanted to tell them for along time, but now as she told her thoughts aloud to the Chief she felt embarrassed and ashamed of mistrusting him fully being his right hand. He didn’t say anything feeling her state, but then asked suddenly, “Can you feel the smell in the air?”

Mono sniffed the cool night and felt a faint distant stench. Her eyes widened with astonishment. She noticed the smell only now when he pointed it out to her. He chuckled and dipped into his own thoughts forgetting about her.

In several moments the whole detachment was again on the march towards the caves.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The cradle swiftly rocked in the middle of nothingness - somewhere between the layers of realities. The creature slept in it; it was a deep eternal sleep. Sometimes she would turn over in her dream but the sleep remained undisturbed.

But sometimes a distant calling song would half wake her and ask to manipulate the flow of magic and do different things. When the request was done, she fell asleep again, as if nothing had happened. Though those request didn’t disturbed her too often lately, is anyone could tell the time flow in this place…

She usually dreamt about things that happened in Arda - events, coronations, wars, deeds that were later put into legends, or lost for the people forever. Things that she usually didn’t quite understand and remember, but they kept coming to her as long as she could remember herself…
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Postby Caligo » Sun Feb 26, 2006 1:39 pm

Chapter 3
(The Great Battle: Part 2)

They looked around at the ever-increasing line of enemies that surrounded them. They knew that they only had one shot at this, or it was the end. They had to get close enough for the magic diamond to work, but too close and they would loose everything. They spotted the leader; he approached from the front with his larger battle-axe. His eyes glowed dark red from under his hooded mantle, staring at them with such malice, and cruelty that it made their skin crawl. The warrior that held the ring stepped to the front firmly trying to look strong and un-afraid. His companions unsheathed their weapons and formed a circle ready to fight when the creatures made their move.

If one were to look at this situation from above they would have seen a greatly outnumbered group of men standing strong in a small circle surrounded by a huge black ring of festering evil beings. It would have looked to be a hopeless battle if not for the bravery of the men, which gave that spark, that made one have courage.

There came a deep, cruel laughter from the dark leader, that sent shivers up their spines and made the hair on the back of their necks stand up. His deep voice came "Do you really think you can beat me and my army?" He laughed again stepping forward almost in range for them to use the power of the ring to trap him. He had no idea the real danger of what they had planned and how close he was to loosing this battle. "I will take great pleasure in killing you all spilling your blood into the dirt. And once you are dead I will own the land and everything will fear me." The warriors said nothing and only smiled at his stupidity in failing to realize their plan. The warrior with the ring stepped forward even more boldly standing up to his full stature. Holding the ring between two fingers he put his arm up into the air to reveal it to the enemy.

"You have failed!" He spoke loud and clear, "We may not have been able to kill you but we have found the means to beat you! I summon the power within this ring to trap you and all your minions to forever obey its will!" Just then a ray of blinding light flashed out of the ring and covered everyone on the field. The warriors turned their heads away, closing their eyes unable to look at the ring. The earth shook slightly and the creatures screeched as they turned to run but were pulled with great force into the ring to forever be trapped there. The light slowly vanished as the last evil soul, the leader, was pulled into the ring. The warriors opened their eyes and looked around to see that they were now alone on the field. The ring was glowing slightly and the diamond turned black revealing that the evil was now trapped inside to be the servant to the ring.

Cal
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Postby Monoceros » Mon Feb 27, 2006 1:51 pm

The sun was coming out from the east when they all reached the caves on the shore of Sea of Rhûn. Three long years of searching ended up here. As they neared the cliffs, people and horses became more and more frightened. As if something was pushing them away. And dread crept into everyone’s heart.

The detachment stopped at the distance and several scouts were sent to look out. The rest of the people prepared for the battle - the warriors prepared their weapons, archers checked their bows and arrows and wizards recalled their most powerful spells.

Though everyone tried to look calm and deep into the preparations, the fear remained in their eyes. Everyone remembered what terrible and dreadful things the followers of the Cult did with their victims. And none of them wanted to see them again.


In several hours the scouts returned. Their faces white as sheet, widened eyes and slightly trembling hands showed that they have seen or met something terrible. They told that the whole place was empty, no signs of life around. One of them noticed a path leading to one of the cave, and there were skulls hanging on stakes around it.

“That must be the main entrance,” said Chief. “Say, have you checked the cave?”

The scout shook his head, “I didn’t dare. The whole place is weird…”

“We must go and see it ourselves,” said Mono. “Who knows what happened there, maybe the Cult changed its place.” No one even doubted the Cult had once resided there.


The entrance looked exactly the way the scout described it. Skulls guarded it and they looked as if they once belonged to human beings. No command was given, but everyone stopped at once. The Chief dismounted and called for the bravest to accompany him. Mono was the only one to jump down. She came nearer trying to look into the darkness – something was luring her inside, and unlike the others, she really wanted to see what the cave looks like. She knew something important would happen there. Her fingers became numb with impatience.

“Come on, there is no one there, I can feel it,” she said, seeing others hesitating. Few did join them, still scared to death.

Horses were nervous and several even tried to run away. There are sometimes things more terrible than living beings.

The Chief turned to face the dark hole and ordered, “Others wait here, then, if we need your help, we’ll call for you,” and he moved towards the cave.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

She dreamt about a dark place, filled with thick stench or something disgusting. Rocky rough walls and floor surrounded the cave. On one of the walls she saw two red eyes that became brighter as she looked at them. The belonged to an enormous sculpture of goat head attached to five-pointed star, encircled and inverted. Baphomet… She remembered that image – the ancient God of Hunters of Far Harad…
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Postby Caligo » Tue Feb 28, 2006 10:38 pm

Chapter 4
(Generations)

And so ended the great battle of old, the unflinching warriors against the evil wondering souls of middle-earth. They named the ring Ossa, which meant death, and it was called 'The Death Ring of the Wondering Soul' forever on after that day.

Inside the ring the form of the wondering soul still dwelled only to manifest itself in spirit form when called upon. The ring picked who it wanted its bearer to be and even long after the great warriors had passed away the ring lived on still containing the power of the souls within it only to be called forth by the bearer. And so it was passed on down through the generations, withstanding all it was put through. The tale of battle faded and soon only became a bedtime story, before it was forgot all together. There was only one record of it ever written down but it is now covered with dust in some old archive.

The new bearer of the ring, Caligo, never knew the great story behind the ring and never knew why it had picked him but felt the same connection to the ring that all the previous ring bearers had. That he must always keep the ring from the hands of evil and use it's power for good, so that when one day his story is told around the campfires of the kingdom it would be great indeed!

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Postby skuld » Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:58 am

I put this together was all as I could, given the way forum's take to html and the like. I put links to the music and the images throughout here so makes sure you check them, I think they add quite a bit.

Here you are, Mono.
I hope you enjoy.

For those of you who cannot read my geocities page:

Click before reading, it's the music.

:: A message from the author ::


This writing of this story is something I have been trying to do for a long time. I am very close to these characters, so much so that some days I feel like I am Raven or Skuld. They have become like a part of me that is just as real as the person that grew up in this body.

I would like to point out that all of the information is copyrighted. I am not sure about the images, I don't know where they came from (I hope I don't get sued?!?!?!)

I am not sure how many people I have mentioned this to, and call me out on it if you want to, I promise, I'm not lying, the reason I returned to TORC was originally because of this Guild. I loved the people who ran it, who were so organized and dedicated. The whole concept was something I fell in love with. And now, I would love the oppertunity to be that part of it. To draw someone else in, to make the difference.

So, I hoped you enjoy this submission, and I wish everyone else much, much luck. When it comes down to it I am proud of all of us getting ready to do this up!

If you would like to leave me a comment about any of the things that I wrote, suggestions to make it better or whatnot, please feel free to leave them here. : ) I also left a link to my e-mail on the page with my submission. If you would like to contact me that way, feel free.


I LOVE TORC
I LOVE THE BARD'S GUILD
I LOVE THE RING'S GUILD
Sincerely,
Skuld, The Crimson Valkyrie

///
Submission

Click before reading, it's the music.

There are some souls that never die. They live eternally, be it through the lives and bodies of others or in the nature of things as a part of what created them. You may call them ghosts, shades, or in some cases, demons. Some, though, take on a much more human life in the after world. And some chosen few return to the world he or she lived in before...

The idea of love, the concept of a split soul, or soul mates is one that is not popular in our present day society. Whether you are in a relationship for money, physical needs, or an arranged familial obligation in their hearts every person searching for someone. But what if you found that someone? And what if it was too late to be together? At least in the physical realm...

Chapter 1
The Past:

The circular room was bright. It seemed that the sun itself was housed in these walls. Radiant gold decorated the metallic pillars holding the enormous ceiling above the heads of the occupants. Clouds appeared to be swirling near the ceiling, even coming close to precipitating if one knew what to look for.

Thrones lined the rounded walls. Each one more ornate than the one next to it. Silvers, golds, metals, gems, stones, and any other material the world had ever seen. These were not human leaders, no, they were something far higher in the food chain.

"The decision has been made," a feminine voice called out. "You chose your actions and now the consequences shall fit those actions that have been taken."

A young woman stood in the center of the room. Standing next to her was a young man. Both had long dark, nearly black, hair. The man was slightly taller and standing half a step behind his companion. Both of them stood straight, dressed in red and black battle armor, but had been stripped of their weapons.

Something inside began to stir inside the woman. Tears began to well in the corner of her eyes. She knew that this was neither the place nor the time to show emotion. The Norns, whom she was one of, know all, the future, the past, the present. Her mistake, as much as she loved him, could not be taken out on the others.

Skuldhild, the Valkyrie
Faust, the Darkness

"Skuld," Odin's voice whispered, "you know the rules. As a Goddess of Fate it was your job to perpetuate the cycle. By allowing yourself to be swayed by this man, and attempting to use your knowledge to benefit yourself...I am afraid the decision has been made, and now you must live with the knowledge of this forever while he...he will die."

"Of course, Lord Odin," she responded, "Lady Frigga."

"If we all understand, Faust you are dismissed," Frigga's voice commanded. "I wish you luck in your next step, may you always remember the Halls of Valhalla."

The young man standing next to Skuld turned in toward her. A pained look was written across his pale face. A single tear ran slowly down his left cheek, a wisp of dark hair blew against his soft skin. His warm hand brushed against her side, his lips laid lightly against her ear.

"Forever your Darkness, My Lady," he reminded her. She heard his first foot fall behind her. Memories flooded her mind, every moment they had ever spent together. His light kisses and comforting hugs. She was his downfall and the cause of the end of his immortal life. He would no longer be a Vanir warrior, commanding legions of Freyja's armies. She would never see him again. She would...turning around as quickly as she could she saw his back becoming less defined as his shape disappeared into nothingness.

Her head fell, tears flowing endlessly. As her shoulders slumped her armor creaked, the new hide still under-conditioned. She balled her fists, meeting her gloves resistance, trying to stop the tears.

"But you Skuld, you must stay," Frigga sounded overzealous. "We had special plans for you. Executable by only one, Hel. It has come to my attention though, that there has been more than one who has petitioned for your freedom. Your sisters of course, but as they are loyal to no one but Fate their petition is only so helpful. And the other, I'm sure you can guess...Faust. His petition was not brought to myself or Odin though, he went to Freyja, who has done him the favor of accepting you into her service. You will become a Valkyrie, one of the first. Do not fail us again."

Picking up her head her eyes met The Lady's, greeted by a slight nod, Skuld's head fell again. She would spend the rest of eternity loyal to The Lady who had given her a second chance, her Darkness's Lady, the beautiful Valfreyja.

But Faust...we'll never be apart...


Chapter 2
The Present:

"FFFAAUUSSSTT," the cry echoed through the dark, empty home. The shadows crept around the dimly moonlit room Raven occupied. Her slightly matted hair stuck to her sweat ridden brow as she forced herself out of bed. Her bare feet touched the cool tiled floor which was her bedroom. Not many people would tile their bed rooms, but when her puppies came rampaging through, it was nice being able to mop up the various messes they brought with them.

Exiting her room she made her way to the kitchen. It wasn't really early enough to get up, but she knew she would not be able to go back to sleep, and thus coffee at four am was her best option.

As she made her way around the kitchen the dream she had pulled herself out of only moments before began to come back to her. There were so many things about it that confused her. For one, dreams began to FADE the further away from them you get, not get more vivid. She could not say the same for this one. On so many levels it seemed like more of a...a memory than anything else. Which, of course, was completely impossible as none of the places in this dream could possibly exist.

She knew the sun would be up soon, so finishing her coffee she grabbed a clean towel off of the dryer in the laundry room and jogged up the stairs headed for the shower.

The room was full of steam, the mirror frosted over in moments. Drawing back the shower curtain, Raven slipped into the scalding water, letting rinse the sweat, tear stained night away. But as every other morning in the past weeks had done the memories began to surface, taking hold of her mind. It was almost like she was sharing her body with someone else. Something else.

It needed to be shrugged off, Raven reminded herself as she got dressed, and ready for the day ahead. The sun was rising when she left the bathroom, dusting a faint yellow light across the rooms furniture.

It was her only day off of the week, and what better way to spend it than relaxing in her home. Her New Year's resolutions came to the forefront of her mind as she sat down in the middle of her living room. In front of her was a table, spread across the table were various candles, inscence, and rune stones. Living alone had it's advantages, she reminded herself.

Raised in a family of pagans she had learned to meditate at an early age. Her mother had told her she had a gift. One that few others in the world shared with her, one she should feel honored to have been blessed with. It had never manifested itself in terribly obvious ways, but Raven could feel it, pulsing through her very soul.

It was time for her to find the answers her mind was searching for in her sleep, time to reveal the hidden beast within her. Time to come face to face with the fate she had been running away from her entire life. Time to face the inner demons.


Chapter 3
And When They meet:

Setting the candles in a circle, and lighting a stick of inscence, Raven took up her Runes. Calling on the names of Odin, Frigga and Frejya she called to her mind the images of her dream. The woman, Skuld appeared first. A sense of familiarity surrounded her being, as though she was more than a character in a dream. Behind her appeard the man, Faust. His head was bent slightly, as though bowing to her.

Sinking deeper into her meditation, Raven began to hear voices, the Runes in her hands became hot as fire, but she could not force herself to turn them away. A room similiar to the one she had occupied in her dream appeared around her. Skuld and Faust were standing before her. Waiting for her to take the next step. Raven could see they were talking, but could not hear what it was about.

As she watched, Skuld began to cry, and Faust took her in his arms.

"We have so little time, My Lady," his voice leaned into her. "We must not waste away these moments dwelling on a time so long past."

"Faust, after all these years, I thought. I have surrounded myself with the human world, searching to the ends of the world for you. Everywhere, and I never...I never thought we would...Oh, My Beloved."

She collapsed against him, sobs racking her chest. It seemed that neither of them even remembered the third guest, which, judging by their conversation was not surprising. But where she was sure she should have been uncomfortable watching such a reunion, Raven felt like she had finally come home, and just as this overwhelming feeling took hold, Skuld glaced over at her through tear glzed eyes.

"I have been with you for years, my dear," Skuld told her. Pushing herself away from Faust Skuld approached her Watcher.

"You are what we call a Watcher," Skuld began. "The only way for Valkyries to continue our work in the modern world we must work through human bodies. When you found Freyja she gifted you as one of her highest followers, placing our souls together. It has been Her who has kept Faust with me for so long."

She motioned for him to join her.

"And now it is time for us to beg of you a favor," Skuld told her, taking Faust's hand. "There are only so many ways for Faust and I to maintain our relationship, and you are that way. When you are released from this meditation I will again be a part of you that you do not consciously remember. I want to keep Faust with me..."

"You mean inside me," Raven shuddered.

"Oh no, child," Skuld laughed. "We are much more sophisticated than that. This ring will be a conduit to his soul. As long as I, you and I, are close to it, wearing, sharing energy with it, I will be with him."

In her hand she produced a small ring. It's black metal gleamed beautifully in the celestial light. Etched into it's metallic surface was a skull with broken wings hoisting it toward the sky. The red ruby of the design glimmered alluringly.

"It's name is, Readfah, the Death Ring of Wing'd Loss," Skuld told her, turning to Faust, tears starting again, "and when the time comes you will understand the meaning of this name. For now, just be sure that we mean you no harm. You are a servant of the Lady, and you will be carried through the ages on my wings..."

Skuld took a step foward, and Raven could feel her, an engery radiating through the air. She closed her eyes, and felt Skuld take one more step foward. A sense of warming love spread through Raven's body, and for a moment she felt complete, in every sense of the word. Moments later the ring that Skuld has presented found it's way onto Raven's finger.

She could hear an inner dialogue that she had never been aware of before. Skuld and Faust had found each other with her help.

Coming out of her meditation, she glaced around the room. Night had fallen what seemed quite a while before. Her candles and inscence were long since spent. Her kitten, Frost, was sitting silently in her lap, he had not moved a muscle, and had not alerted her to his presence through her entire expedition.

Glancing down at Frost, she saw the back of her hand. The Ring Skuld had given her rested on her left middle finger. It seemed to glow from an inner light. And she knew where it came from, know what fueled it's lifeforce.

...Readfah...Skuld...Faust...

"Lady Freyja, may I serve you as best I can forever," Skuld spoke through her. Feeling Skuld use her body, Raven knew they were one and the same, and only one name would be necessary. Casting off the name Raven, she took up her given name, finally taking in the part of her she had never understood.

Raven knew that when she woke in the morning she would not remember any of this. The Ring would stay with her, it's beauty would be commented on, but when asked where it came from she would be unable to answer, though she would never take it off. But for now, that was ok. For now, she was aware of what had happend, and been part of something that most people don't even believe in any longer...


There are some souls that stay with us forever. Some relationships that call each other back from even the confines of the darkest hells. To become one body, one must first become one soul.

I am Skuldhild, the Valkyrie. And it is only through you, Readfah, that Faust, My Darkness, and I have become one body.


We'll always be together, My Darkness.

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Postby Monoceros » Thu Mar 02, 2006 1:34 pm

Torches were lit and the whole place revealed horrible picture – dead bodies, already fully decayed, covered the floor. They once belonged to people dressed in black robes. The wounds showed they all were killed.

The group spread out to search for any trace of what had happened here...

In one of the small caves Mono found a survived old man, dressed in rags that hardly reminded the robes she saw on the bodies. He was very emaciated and his eyes burned with insane look. Very carefully she took him to the first large hall where the group agreed to meet. He was quite and didn’t resist when she offered him to sit down on one of the benches that looked more or less safe. But he kept silence to all of her questions; he was just constantly looking around suspiciously and sometimes growled at the shadows cast by the light of torch. Desperate to reveal anything from him she waited for the others.

When the Chief and others came back with nothing to tell about, they were astonished to see the old man. Immediately the Chief sent for the most experienced sorcerer and healer. Both did their best to bring the survived into his senses. Finally he was able to speak and he told them what has happened to this place starting from the very foundation of the Cult.

“…Then our priest claimed that Baphomet demanded through the sphere of power a human sacrifice from his followers. We didn’t have any opportunities to satisfy the demand, as your people were after us and we had to lie down for some time,” he looked at the Chief suspiciously then continued. “So our priest claimed we have to sacrifice one of our brothers, of course the one who was not in favor of the priest. Someone agreed and someone opposed. The whole community divided into two opposing sides. Several months it was all quite, but then the leader of the opposing side claimed that he had the right to use the sphere to talk with our God as well. In a short, two sides clashed with each other.

Those who supported the priest outnumbered the opposition and the captives were sacrificed just like the priest wanted. But on the next day those who survived gone mad and they killed each other. That’s the punishment of our God for not carrying out his demand at once!” the old man shouted. Moment later he calmed down and told them, “You must get me out of here! The Temple is defiled!”

Mono took out her dagger carefully and asked the old man, “How did it happened that you survived?”

The old man looked at her as if it was she who was insane, “My Lord protects me! I’m the only one who can talk to him!” then his eyes turned red and his madness came back to him.He ran away struggling fiercely through pushing everyone. Mono fell down and lost her dagger as he hit her.

“He must be stopped! Quickly!” Mono heard Chief’s order and felt someone setting her on her feet.


They chased him till the deepest cave. By chance, Mono was the first to enter it. She looked around trying to detect the old priest. Suddenly she noticed that she was standing on the steps of a great stairway that led up to the black altar with a large dark sphere settled on it. Above it she saw a sculpture of a goat head carved so well, that it seemed almost alive. She noticed the priest hiding behind the altar, trying to call to Baphomet.

Mono stood in astonishment as she realized that the sculpture was indeed alive. The black holes that were supposed to be the eyes suddenly lit up with red fire. The head moved and opened its mouth, “MUST BE DESTROYED…”

“As you wish, my Lord!” screamed the mad priest and threw the dagger at her. Paralyzed with fear she stood and watched as the dagger flew towards her. At the very last second she ducked and it only scratched her. She rushed upstairs trying to reach the upper platform before he could be able to do anything else. The priest giggled and stood there with his hands on the sphere, watching as she neared him.

She jumped over the last few steps landing several feet away from the edge of the stairway. The very moment she touched the ground she withdrew her sword and felt sharp pain pierce her body. She looked down and saw a bolt plunged into her chest. Furious with pain she rushed to the priest but he was too deft for his age and state, and he was able to dodge away. Mono felt her legs shaking and she felt down on her knees just besides the altar.

Through blurry vision she saw the priest was reloading his crossbow at the distance and her companions only at the foot of the stairway, but they were too far away to help her. Then she heard the voice of the Goat again, “DESTROY THE SPHERE!” Suddenly she realized it was addressed to her.

“Nooooo!!!” the priest screamed and hastened himself.

With all might she hit the stone with the hilt of the sword. The recoil echoed through her body. And her last vision was shattered sphere and the mad and angry face of the priest aiming at her. Sharp thought burned her mind, “Dûrmir!” her last hope…

*****Ring Action*****

The cradle trembled and stopped. The creature woke up at once. Distant voice called for her, the same voice that ordered her to manipulate magic, but this time it was pleading for help. Dûrmir tore the curtains of realities and stepped out into the world she was so long dreaming about.

With its back to her there stood a miserable thing, aiming at the wounded warrior standing on her knees. With one hit of her paw Dûrmir cast him away, but the bolt was already set free. Fortunately, it flew an inch away from the warrior’s head.


****End Ring Action*******

Mono was fading away. She saw two eyes, one blue and another green, glowing in the shadows. Then they jumped up above the ground and a maiden walked out. She neared Mono and eyed her carefully. *I’m losing my mind…* The stranger had long straight black hair, one eye was green and another was blue. A hide of a dark fur animal laid on her shoulders with the skull on her head as a helmet. The dark clothes covered her body as a shadow over her pale skin.

“You must be the one who called me. I’m Dûrmir,” she said and her voice seemed like a murmur of a big cat. She stretched her hand to the bolt and pulled it out, holding Mono to prevent her from falling. The Baphomet’s head moved once again and the voice was a lot quieter, “Knew we’d meet someday…”

Dûrmir smiled revealing long sharp fangs, “Stop stirring up the memories and help her instead.”

The head of God sighed and said, “We will meet again someday. For now get away, I’ll shake this place to its ground. Ah! It must have been done decades ago!” he chuckled and then the circle around the star moved and began cycling. The eyes flashed with red for the last time and died out.

Dûrmir helped Mono to stand up and dragged her downstairs. The wounds disappeared as if they had never been there. The Chief and the others had just climbed half of the steps, when they saw two girls rushing down…


The sun was setting down, when they ran out from the cave. People backed off as they felt and heard rumble beneath the ground. In a matter of minutes the caves buried down the deceased.

Mono turned to Dûrmir, “Thank you, you saved my life.”

Dûrmir narrowed her eyes on the sun in a cat-like manner and said, “It was a deal, you woke me up from the dream. I was tired of sleeping, to tell the truth.”
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Postby EntwifeLost » Sat Mar 25, 2006 11:09 pm

RING GUILD MEMBERS and BARDS GUILD MEMBERS MAY NOW VOTE FOR A WINNER

Choose one of the Entries in this thread and then send an email to the following:

EntwifeLost entwife_lost@yahoo (dot) com

Hidden_Ring briainhuntere@yahoo (dot) com




--------------
Awesome work! I had a very very very hard time choosing!!
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