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A Lahmian in the Age of Sigmar

Discussion in 'Tales from the Crypt' started by Seneschal, Aug 31, 2015.

  1. Seneschal

    Seneschal Liche True Blood

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    CHAPTER ONE



    The cold eerie sky over Shyish paid witness to a desperate skirmish between a battalion of its unliving denizens and a host of invaders sworn to the Lord of Skulls. It had begun as an ambush, members of the fearsome Crimson Fury warband and their equally deadly brayherd allies had been lying in wait for the servants of the Great Necromancer in a craggy ravine, using the rocky terrain to their best advantage.

    Bloodstoker Karvus had a canny mind for battle and had the strength of will to keep his warriors quiescent until the proper time to launch the attack presented itself (having a tortureblade attached to the stump of his arm aided his endeavors). He did his lord’s bidding and standing in the shadow of the Mighty Lord Guuladak ensured that he would not fail in his task. The heavily muscled general stood to his side, an Axe of Khorne in his meaty hand. On his crimson armor were the bloodstains of many felled opponents, each a badge of honor and a testament to his greatness. Guuladak wore them proudly. To his right, his pet flesh hound drooled a blob of acidic spittle onto the ground, the creature hungrier for battle than ever before.

    At a command from his master, Karvus set his bloodthirsty brethren upon their prey, the bone chilling air becoming filled with the battlecries and brays of the savage followers of Khorne! The heavy booted feet of the Blood Warriors and cloven hooves of the beastmen tramping down the rough ravine made a sound akin to thunder rolling across the blasted land. They rushed toward their unliving enemies with the utmost haste, never fearing death, seeking only the glory of battle and the destruction of all others.

    As for the undead, they responded quickly and turned their forces about to confront the sudden threat, their actions commanded by a highly capable general, one who had fought countless battles both in the field and in long gone days of court. Her name was Ushalla and she was one of the dread entities known as the soulblight vampires, creatures that were feared across the Eight Worlds. Gone were the days when Ushalla could lie in the lap of luxury, attended by winsome courtiers and handsome thralls, replaced now by centuries of neverending war, facing the very possible threat of extinction. The decades of conflict had made her a better leader, however, her cunning mind now filled with stratagems and tactics she never possessed in the world that had been. Not only was Ushalla a calculating genius when it came to battle, she was also a ferocious combatant, capable of felling the most skilled and powerful of adversaries…as the followers of Khorne were about to witness firsthand…

    Moving as one, her skeleton warriors stood together in formation, their ancient decorated shields becoming a veritable wall before their enemy. The gold enameled standard of their company, although the victim of rust and years of wear, proudly proclaimed the shambling unit’s allegiance to a throne forgotten by time, defiant in the face of the new worlds and their many dangers.

    The Bloodreavers charged the phalanx of skeletons, eager to begin the slaughter and be the first to fell one of their new foes. Reaverblades made contact with white bone, breaking the fragile forms of the dead as the frenzied mortals hewed apart the osseous bodies of their enemies. However, their assault was not as effective as they believed it would be as the defensive formation of the skeletons proved sturdy enough to withstand the press of bodies. Their shields, bearing the black, blue and green colors of their company, stopped half of the incoming blows. The Bloodreavers shouted their outrage, adrenaline coursing through their muscular arms that pounded away at foes who seemed all but implacable.

    They fought in the shadow of their Bloodsecrator who stood nearby hefting the brass totem of Khorne, an overly large circular icon encrusted with the skulls of the slain. A ripple in reality revealed a small glimpse into the Realm of their dreaded master, and the Bloodsecrator focused its might upon the enemy wizards, disrupting their sorcery.

    Ushalla and her two necromancers, Mordemar and Arkisan, were very much aware of what transpired as they could feel the ebb of arcane power in the air fluctuate due to the growing aperture that glowed with crimson radiance. The vampire gave a hiss in the Bloodsecrator’s direction and ordered her dark wizards to push their magicks through the chaotic energies.

    Scanning the battlefield, she took stock of the current situation. The skeletons were holding despite suffering a handful of casualties while the stone constructs, known as Ushabti, were doing considerably well against the ferocious Bloodwarriors. Setting them against the heavily armored elites was an excellent move on her part, for she had dealt with them before and knew that her Ushabti were the perfect counter to them. From the far right, she could see the wild brayherd rush toward the Ushabti but then pause once they spotted the two necromancers milling about behind the battlefield. The beastmen changed course on the run, rushing toward the withered spellcasters with mayhem on their minds.

    Arkisan both saw and smelled them coming, the stink of their wet matted fur assaulting his nostrils. The necromancer focused his mind and dark energies into the unleashing of a particular spell, cursing the Bloodsecrator’s presence as he did. He could feel the essence of Shyish coruscate throughout his body, caressing him like a dark lover while demanding part of his very being all at once. The magic stayed with him and pushed through the chaotic disruption in the air, causing the ground in front of the brayherd to shake…then crack open, sending shards of stone everywhere! From the ruined earth came more skeletal warriors! The rattling bones of long deceased combatants assembled before the eyes of the stunned beastmen who were forced to end their mad rush toward the wizards. The skeletons quickly moved into formation, blocking the way to the necromancers.

    The vampiress smiled at her wizard’s ingenuity and lifted her sword into the air, shutting her eyes. Her mind reached out, seeking the location of her hidden minions. A moment later, Ushalla found them, her eyes opening, “ARISE!!” she shouted.

    From behind the brayherd, a trio of monstrous scorpions erupted from the ground, pincers clacking, barbed tails flailing in the air! The ebon creatures crawled over the broken ground rapidly, headed for the rear of the horned beasts. Each construct possessed the body of a fallen sorcerer from the long gone desert wastes of Ushalla’s homeland embedded in their torsos, empowering the massive arachnids with potent energy.

    Laughing to herself after sealing the doom of the beastmen, Ushalla turned to look at her left flank. Nighthaunt Wraiths misted out from the fog banks, preparing to countercharge the large unit of Bloodreavers. The maniacal Bloodstoker eyed the ghostly spirits with interest, knowing that they would soon be upon him and his men. Ushalla believed the whip wielder to be her best target, knowing that rushing in to sweep her foe with a flank charge alongside her Nighthaunts could be a decisive maneuver on her part. She was far too cautious, however, and for good reason, for Lord Guuladak was staring daggers at her from across the way, awaiting her next move so that he may throw himself at the vampire. While no coward, Ushalla knew that a direct one on one duel with the deadly servant of Chaos had the potential to be her last. What an ignoble end that would be! To have survived centuries of wars and countless intrigues and assassination attempts perpetrated by the aristocracy of the night only to be brought down in an ugly nondescript crack in the earth by a crazed fanatic of a false god!

    Lifting a single digit in his direction, the vampiress uttered words of magical power, seeking to weaken the imposing lord of battle before a direct engagement. Her spell faltered almost immediately due to the presence of the massive Flesh Hound by Guuladak’s side, its collar dissipating the Arcane Bolt before it could harm its master. The vampiress growled and bared her fangs. If she did not commit to the flank, she knew the Nighthaunts would suffer heavy losses should the Lord of Khorne assail them. The sounds of the Crimson Fury’s warcries and the clanking of steel against steel and armor filled her ears as Ushalla rushed to the side of her spectral minions, empowering them with her sinister will.

    Meanwhile, the skeleton warriors reknit themselves thanks to the necromantic power of their ancient standard, its fell energy causing many of them to rise and fight once more for their unliving general. Khopesh swords dug into the flesh and blood red helmets of the Bloodreavers, eliciting furious retribution from the zealous butchers. The Reavers whipped their axes and shortswords at the undead, their arms moving like veritable tornadoes on the weathered shields of their enemies. Blows that should have crushed and cleaved instead bounced off the bone white dead, their bodies and bulwarks reinforced by a Mystic Shield Mordemar had been able to successfully cast. The gibbering, bald headed necromancer stood behind the wall of bones, holding a skull high above his head, gazing at the Bloodsecrator in defiance and triumph.
     
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  2. The Sun King

    The Sun King Imperator Staff Member True Blood

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    Awesome! I cannot wait to see how Ushalla will fare against Guuladak!
     
  3. Seneschal

    Seneschal Liche True Blood

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    Thanks for the feedback, mate! I appreciate it. The next installment should be in by Monday or Tuesday.
    Chapter two will develop her character. Right now I'm focusing on straight up combat in the classic WH style of writing.
     
  4. Count Vashra

    Count Vashra Lord of Shadows True Blood

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    I like this story, too, Seneschal.
     
  5. Seneschal

    Seneschal Liche True Blood

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    Thanks, Count!
    Any particulars that stick out for you?
    Comments and criticism always welcome, everyone
     
  6. Count Vashra

    Count Vashra Lord of Shadows True Blood

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    No real specific points for me. Just all-round good.
     
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  7. Seneschal

    Seneschal Liche True Blood

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    Heavy ritual blades fell again and again on the beleaguered Bloodwarriors, smiting the wily combatants to the ground. The tall Ushabti brought the crimson clad brawlers to their knees, dismantling the Khornate offensive with powerful counterblows. Not wanting to disappoint their dread master, the mortals rose from the bloodied ground, shrugging off deep wounds that would have felled lesser men. Expressionless faces cast in stone looked upon the clustered warriors as they assaulted the Ushabti with unbridled fury. The undead constructs cared not how resilient their foes were, cared for nothing at all, for they served their general unquestioningly and through her, their real master, Great Nagash.

    Massive glaives cut through arms and shoulders, burying themselves in the chest cavities of the Bloodwarriors. A pile of corpses, three feet high, had formed around the constructs, crimson armor and shattered bodies functioning as both mortar and stone for the macabre structure.

    The Ushabti line faltered for a moment when the spells of the two necromancers could not penetrate the whirling chaos present in the weave of magic, the Bloodsecrator’s icon stalling their efforts. The warriors took notice of the sudden shift of the battle and felt reinvigorated at their enemies’ misfortune, raging all the harder, finding their weapons giving purchase against the tough armor and obsidian flesh that before seemed near impervious to their blows. Warcries of “SKULLS FOR THE SKULL THRONE!!” resounded through the ravine as the elite combatants hacked down an eagle headed statue with axes and gorefists delivering wicked cuts into its body.

    It was but a minute later when Mordemar and Arkisan were able to reanimate the destroyed constructs, invoking dark powers to reinforce the Ushabti. The statues fought back and pushed the Bloodwarriors away, swinging their glaives were tremendous force. Arkisan let his steely gaze linger on the Icon wielder. He twisted gnarled fingers in the air, a dirge escaping his lips, focusing his energy upon the bald warrior. A bolt of pure force shot out from his hands, striking the Bloodsecrator in the middle of his broad chest. The Icon wielder skidded back three feet, stunned from the blast. He shook away his confusion and looked up just in time to see another Mystic Bolt strike him directly in the eyes! Crashing to the ground, the Bloodsecrator released the haft of his Icon, the standard he had been entrusted and breathed his last, his journey moving on beyond this life…

    Ushalla saw the warrior fall from the corner of her as the glowing aperture faded from existence and let out a triumphant laugh, knowing that her forces stood a far greater chance of victory now that the cursed symbol of the enemy’s false deity could no longer thwart her magicks. Her Nighthaunt Wraiths charged ahead of her, misting over the uneven terrain effortlessly. The ethereal specters brought their long bladed scythes to bear upon the flank of the Reavers, culling their numbers with ease, ghostly visages the last sight of many of the frenzied mortals.

    It was then that Lord Guuladak and Bloodstoker, Karvus, threw their weight at the wraiths.

    The two favored of the Lord of Skulls attacked the deathly phantoms with greater skill and speed than any other member of their tribe could even dream of equaling. Karvus shredded the ethereal spirits with his black whip, causing them to vanish with a bitter wail, their misty shapes gone from the world. The champion gloated over his victory and preceded to stab the next Nighthaunt in line while calling for the enemy general to step forth and challenge him. Lord Guuladak rent the spirits in two with his Axe of Khorne, the wicked weapon turning them into so much fading ectoplasm. His hound bit into their ranks with its six inch razor sharp teeth, its daemonic essence severing their link to the realm of Shyish. The hooded specters stood no chance against the trio and sson found their numbers nearly depleted in but a matter of minutes.

    Then, from behind the dissipating wall of Wraiths, came the Vampire of Lhamia.

    Ushalla charged the Bloodstoker with vengeance on her mind, infuriated by the upstart mortal’s belief that he could stand against one such as she! Karvus gave her a smug look of superiority, about to thoroughly enjoy ripping the fragile female to pieces. He sent out his long prehensile whip toward her pale throat, seeking to snap her neck before reeling her in and beginning the enjoyable task of butchering the vampire.

    Unbeknownst to the Bloodstoker, the Lahmian bloodline gave Ushalla a speed the likes of which would make the followers of fallen Slaanesh green with envy.
    Stopping her swift charge, Ushalla reached out for the whip as its length was about to coil about her, catching it in her firm grasp. Karvus gave a look of surprise as he tugged the leather weapon, shocked by the strength of the willowy vampire. Ushalla narrowed her eyes at the mortal….the power of the nosferatu building up within her breast….
    The Lahmian tugged on the whip, launching Karvus off his booted feet through the air. The heavily armored warrior fell onto his rump, swearing in a profane tongue the vampire was unfamiliar with. He got to his feet, knocking aside his fellow chaos tribesmen in his pursuit of his foe.
    Ushalla was nowhere to be seen, however. Karvus shouted angrily, striking one of the tribesmen with a brutal backhanded slap that nearly snapped the mortal’s neck. The Bloodstoker turned to the west, to the east and spun around, searching for his adversary. He called her a whore and a coward, unfit to battle one such as he. Karvus cracked the whip violently, ripping up the ground around him in fury.

    Death came then, choosing the form of the vampire’s deadly blade. Ushalla stabbed her enemy clean through his back, the sword tip exiting out the other side through his belly, kissing the crisp air and spattering scarlet on the dry earth. She turned the blade twice, mincing internal organs, slicing through his spinal column.
    Karvus could do nothing but breathe in his last few moments, the strength to reach back and grab a hold of his executioner taken from him by the decisive strike to his midsection. He spat his blood out and crashed to his knees, dizziness overtaking him. His vision blurred, the sounds of the battle growing distant…
    Ushalla swung her ensorcelled blade in a strong wide arc, putting all the strength of one arm into her blow, decapitating the fallen warrior and then snatching her grisly trophy with her free hand, spinning around once before coming to a stop, holding both weapon and bloodied skull aloft, screaming across the expanse of the battlefield.
    The tribesmen of the Lord of Skulls looked on in awe at the undead woman, now covered in the crimson of their Bloodstoker. She had bested one of their strongest and now stood amidst them all, daring any and all to challenge her.

    One challenged her. One raised his own tool of death in the air, not to salute her, but to raise his higher than his enemy, a defiant act that bespoke of his superiority. His bloodhungry hound stood by his side, drooling venomous spittle, held back only by its master’s will.

    Guuladak lowered his impossibly heavy axe, pointing directly at Ushalla. The time had come. No subordinates would dare to get in his way now, it was between the two greatest champions of each force to settle the contest. With the emblem of The Lord of Skulls perched upon his shoulders, the Mighty Lord of Khorne charged toward the ancient Lhamian!
    Ushalla licked her lips, trying the severed head to her thin belt with a dexterity few could fathom, unconcerned about the brute and his hound rushing toward her vengefully. The vampire felt the power of her defeated enemy flow through her being, the blood strengthening her, healing her. She then daintily wiped the remaining crimson from her pulchritudinous porcelain face…and leveled her soulblight longsword at the lord of Khorne with a lightning quick motion!
    “COME AND DIE, BUFFOON!”
     
  8. Count Vashra

    Count Vashra Lord of Shadows True Blood

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    Good update. This is an exciting battle.:)
     
  9. Seneschal

    Seneschal Liche True Blood

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    Good to see you, Count Vashra! Thank you for your kind words!
     
  10. Unas the slayer

    Unas the slayer Black Knight

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    As I've already said to you, this is a really interesting prelude. ;)
    Any plans for a future development?
     
  11. Seneschal

    Seneschal Liche True Blood

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    Thanks again. I'm working on a prologue to the battle so people can see a more in-depth look to her character.
     
  12. Count Vashra

    Count Vashra Lord of Shadows True Blood

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    I look forward to it.

    On second read through, I love the scorpions jumping out of the ground. Awesome.
     
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