Once in a while I tried to add some short stories to explain hilarious moments during the games usually due to abysmal dice rolls! It was suggested to me it might be a good idea to collect them too. Well, let's try and see if that chronicle is going to grow :)

Part 1 (2012/06/14)

Then Archibald the Archmage spotted something very but very strange. He looked thorough the window and as his counterpart was now on his own and away from the unit Archibald could see clearly and paled. How outrageous! How could he! It is a breach of all protocols! How could he dress up the very same, most fashionable Robes at the same battle! Archibald was so furious that he simply drew too much energy to cast some powerful spell to punish that other wizard, who displayed such lack of manners that he simply confused all of them and although in the end he managed to cast Curse on the dragon (clearly he was picking targets at random now) he promptly forgot all but one spell. But he didn't despair as he found out that the only spell left was the one to rob the other wizard from his Robes!          

"Archie, you sissy" thought Bob the Battle Standard Bearer when he heard a little explosion and a cry of rage coming from the top floor of the nearby building. Then he aimed his bow at the dragon to attract its attention and one of his magical arrows hurt the beast who turned his way. Now the fun will begin!

Part 2 (2012/07/01)

Archibald the Archmage was bored. All this running here and there made no sense to him. He was also in bad mood as he could not take his favorite robes for this battle. He was leaning against the door of the house his unit was positioned next to. Then he spotted a poster and as he was well versed in dozens of languages he easily read the title "House Party!!!!" and his good mood returned. Memories of good old days in the student house when he practiced his arts at one of the faculties of White Tower came again and his mood was improving. He didn't think much, opened the door and begun the search for the room where the party was about to start.
Bob the Battle Standard Bearer was really concerned for his companions and decided they should withdraw. Then Archibald disappeared in the house. Bob ordered his troops to run into and drag silly Archmage out before it is too late. When he spotted the poster, seemingly written by human hand in human language but way too neatly and regular. He knew it's a trap.

They run into the top room and found Archibald happy to announce they are the first to come for the party. When he was about to ask "Where are the girls?" some noise and thunder like sound was heard outside the house. "These are not fireworks" thought Bob ...

Part 3 (2012/09/09)

Archibald the Archmage was in a very bad mood. He was bored, that for start. Then he was forced to assist the army against Dwarves. His magic never works against them but his companions didn't want to hear about that. And he just met that cute new magic adept in the library and promised her to give her some tutorials as she claimed she has some difficulties with geometry (parallel lines in particular) and some nuances of force application when friction is present eluded her. Now, how to make it possible for him to disappear in a convincing manner ... yes, that was an idea! He decided to create some fake detonation as if he was attacked by a daemon or some particular nasty magic flux would happen. In the resulting confusion nobody would notice that it was not real and he can fabricate some story later. The adept would be helpful with providing scratches and tearing his clothes a little so that the story would seem plausible. Perfect! So, let's make a little show of fireworks!  

Bob the Battle Standard Bearer was looking for another opponent. He much preferred to swing the sword than to carry the banner. He spotted quarrelers nearby and ordered the charge for all units nearby. But in the middle of the attack he noticed something is missing. The Banner! He forgot to take it, damn. Ok, everybody get back! We swore to protect the Banner with our lives! Hm, how interesting that he thought exactly that when crossbow bolts started to sing around and when he turned towards the enemy again he was looking at five barrels pointing exactly at him.  

Part 4 (2012/12/04) 

Swordmaster was sitting in front of one of the many tents of the military camp a small force of High Elves raised up during yet another lonely campaign. He lost track which one it was. Or maybe he has never cared to count. Short time of relative peace was used by the warriors to check and fix their equipment. Unlike the highborn of Ulthuan, the warriors of this army had no servants to do so. They were the Outcasts. They could not afford to have camp followers. They did not need them anyway.

The camp did not remind the typical one of the High Elves force. The tents were identical, no banners indicated which house was occupying particular area, no colors or symbols adorned them either. But it was possible to set it up and disassemble it very quickly. It also served quite well as a field fortification and could withstand an assault if need be.

It was not the fist time when Swordmaster thought everything about this force was so different in comparison to any royal army of Ulthuan. And yet, they were the loyal soldiers of Asur, even if unwanted and unaccepted by the court.

He did not know how exactly this army was built, as he joined the ranks when it already existed. But according to the tales of the warriors who have served since the beginning it was due to the efforts of two individuals that the motley crew of misfits were forged into a single force at all. No one could tell what their real names were. They used some silly and crude human names to hide their identity. No one could tell if it was to spread misinformation among the enemies or … among the court. No one cared.

The official title of the army general belong the only spell caster among the force, quite eccentric archmage. But which high magic practitioner is not? Swordmaster suspected, however, that under the mask of frivolous and unstable personality there are many more layers and many more faces. The army battle standard bearer was completely different. But not in the most fashionable way, when after Tyrion and Teclis everybody wanted to have twins with characters as different as night and day. They were not brothers, were not cousins and they came from different parts of Ulthuan for sure. That warrior did not even try to be opposite or to bring the balance to any fake hierarchy the army might have. It was more about showing different aspect of the same force. They were the mind behind the idea and they managed to create that army against all odds. They managed to group together the warriors that did not fit in their regiments, in their own realms. But somehow here, away from Ulthuan, they were more at home than anywhere else. And many if not all of them finally found the group of warriors they belong to.

Swordmaster kept sharpening his kislevite sabers and observed warriors around him. Each group retained some of the armors and weapons of their parent regiments but no symbols were left. Each unit and each individual had one thing in common. They broke some rule that made them equal to criminals in the eyes of the highborn and the only way to atone for their real or imaginary sins was to join that force and pay in blood for their mistakes.

Some of his fellow Swordmasters, for example, committed a crime of questioning loremasters or, like himself, abandoning the traditional weapons and styles in favor of foreign ones which suited them far better. There were even exceptional warriors who never were accepted by the Tower but who were as skilled as any trained there. Loremasters were afraid that they do not control their inner aggression well enough and refused to train those with the stain they mistakenly attributed to their dark kindred.

There were former members of Phoenix King bodyguards who questioned orders of their superiors. They made a mistake of speaking their minds when blind obedience was expected. Their belief that true Lion should be ready to die for greater good but not necessarily to die for the sake of fulfilling the order was their undoing.

Proud knights, many of which hailed from the realm of Caledor, were exiled for the crime of letting others to join their ranks simply because they valued skill with lance more than the birthright. And their chose their true companions over stupid rules that prevented truly skilled to increase the ranks of knightly orders in the name of so called tradition.

There were archers who refused to join the ranks of spearelves, as was expected after some period of training. They argued that it is a waste of training if one spends century on honing their archery skills and then abandoning it just to follow another tradition which did not make sense.

There were former sea guards, marines without peer, who made a mistake of suggesting to their superiors that huge phalanx formations are not the only way of fighting. And that the experience gained from wars and battles conducted on ships prepared them better to operate in small maniples of flexible troops. It was called a heresy and insubordination.

There were even two small squadrons of Ellyrians, surprisingly enough as these horsemen were considered to have much more freedom than any other warriors from other parts of Ulthuan. It was possible that they alone were actually free to go wherever they wanted to and they simply chose to go and explore far beyond the plains of Ellyrion. Judging by their enthusiasm they were happy to find out there are steppes out there that might match these in their homeland.

It was unknown why two formal leaders of the army decided to form this force, although it was soon clear what it was used for. It was unknown what connections their used to be allowed to gather all the “criminals” into a single army that was not perceived as a threat to royal forces. But they did save many of the warriors and gave them a chance to fight for something they believed in.

They did not fight for the Phoenix King, as they were not allowed to come back to Ulthuan unless summoned. They were considered rebels and many princes, not knowing the purpose of creating this force, were openly hostile. But they were still loyal. And while the royal forces enjoyed a fragile state of peace on Ulthuan, the Outcasts did not wait for the enemy to appear at the gates. They were sent to look for it and destroy it before they even thought about it.
Part 5 (2012/12/29)

Archibald was in his room when some annoying noise broke his concentration. One cannot have a moment of silence it seems. How can he focus on arranging these new beautiful flowers he happened to find nearby the deserted building? Well, he will go out and tell these silly archers that they should be ashamed to disturb the peace of their Archmage and General!

What he saw on the stairs frightened him. He saw elves fighting armored rats and despite their precise strikes, there were more coming in. Then some huge rat with a gruesome trophy rack at his back jumped over warriors and started to run after Archibald.

He didn't wait and fled to his room. He even tried to barricade the door with the desk but was to slow. The door burst in splinters and Skaven emerged through them, with blades bare and eyes radiating hatred. Archibald moved back inch by inch but then he stepped on something soft lost balance and fell hard on his back hitting his head against the frame of the window. But it saved him, as it was exactly at the same time when the Rat jumped at him and missed completely. It was due to the fact that the soft pillow Archibald stepped on flew high, hit ratmen in the face blinding it for a second so that he didn't stop and jumped out of the window.

As much as Archie was happy to find himself alive and a little dizzy because of the hit on his head, he was a little sad he lost his favorite pillow with nice picture and sign made especially for him by his favorite students. It said "Hello Kitty!". Yes, Archie will tell his companions that it was his master illusion spell of a giant tiger that scared the cowardly leader of the ratmen and that he, the natural born hero, saved the day! 

Part 6 (2013/01/20)

Hieronimous the Engineer looked carefully through his magnifying glass. He noticed how elven warriors moved into the building some time ago and now they were forming outside in good order. But he didn't see that brightly dressed mage with them and the conclusion was obvious. He was still inside the house. Hieronimous smiled and gave order to the cannon crew - they just acquired a new target.

Archibald finally had a little moment of peace. It was not his fault that the spells he cast didn't work as usual. He even channeled much more power than necessary to prove how skilled he was. And why they were so offended about the side effects? Ignorant fools!

He looked through the window and then something on the hill caught his attention.

"Bob! Bob, come here now!" - he yelled and always grim battle standard bearer showed up in the room. "Can you, please, stand on the balcony and show me how you wave that flag of yours to greet our allies?" - Archie tried his most innocent smile. Bob shrugged his shoulders and started waving his flag. And then something round, hard and fast moving hit him.

Part 7 (2013/03/25)

Bob was lying on the grass in the shade of huge banner he planted nearby. One of the few advantages of being a battle standard bearer was that you didn't have to worry about lack of shade. And shade he needed as this island-continent they arrived to some time ago was very sunny. Bob also wanted to use a little moment of peace when Archie was busy with something else and didn't bother him at all. Elven mage was extremely enthusiastic about his new skills. Well, maybe not that new but he kind of re-discovered them. And Archie was happy as thanks to them he attracted attention of all the elves whose attention he required.

Little golden trinkets always caught the eye of elven maidens. Glittering robes were for elven ladies. Elven lords, thinking themselves art experts, ordered statues of weird creatures, all in gold. Like the last one who was delighted to have Strigoi Ghoul King who looked as if he was still alive, in his collection. If the fool only knew the truth. Elven nobility expressed their gratitude. Each in their own way. Archie just loved that. At least the hounds, who seem to run around the campus were not as messy as normal dogs. And when you stepped in the poo you didn't have to change your shoes.

But the moment of peace, as always, was about to come to an end. Bob spotted a scout approaching him with the most recent report. Apparently elven ruins they have just discovered attracted the attention of another elven war host. And for the greater good of Ulthuan they could not be allowed to find out what exactly caused this ancient city to fall.

Yvresii. Well, Bob had nothing against them, he even like them for their naive sense of honor and respect for their own traditions. He would have preferred, however, to slap one of those proud lords who claimed they knew everything about warfare just because they had a few skirmishes in the vicinity of their small kingdoms. Ah well, maybe next time. Hopefully, the Yvresii can be persuaded to abandon the area without bloodshed. Otherwise it is not going to be another war game.

Part 8 (2013/05/12)

Bob surveyed the battlefield as they marched towards the enemy. Double line formation in the center looked good and he hoped it will keep enough pressure on the Dwarves. Then he spotted the heavy cavalry that moved way too fast and he realized that Caledorians could not resist and decided to charge all by themselves! "You fools!" thought Bob "there will be no glory in that charge and you will endanger entire flank! Stop you idiots!" But it was too late ...  

The situation looked very bad. Bob had only one duty now, try to protect their general. He saw the Dwarven rangers approaching very fast and ordered the regiment to retreat to safety. But as always the unit is as fast as its slowest member. "Archie, hurry up!" shouted Bob. Then he paled. Seriously? Wearing THAT kind of shoes for a battle? Now he knew why they struggled to keep up the pace with the rest of the army. Suddenly withdrawing didn't seem such a good idea anymore. 

Part 9 (2013/06/20)

Archie, very pleased with himself because of the nice show off with magic (if only that silly dragon died already!) leaned through the window. He saw proud Sons of Caledor picking up the speed and leveling their lances to charge something big in the woods. They stormed in, for a moment disappearing from sight.

Then a mighty roar of anger was heard and as quickly Caledorians stormed in as quickly they were now galloping back. Just behind them an ugly giant (even for their own standards) was chasing them. In one hand he held huge mace, while with the other kept his oversized pants from dropping down his knees or maybe even ankles!

What in the first impression looked like a tail, a frequent mutation among spawn of chaos, happened to be a Caledorian lance. "Ah, I see now" - thought Archie - "all this talking about martial prowess, honor and respect for foe but in their arrogance the Caledorians were kind to forget about manners" Even Archie knew that it is not good idea to attack an enemy like a giant when it was looking for a quiet place to reply to the nature call. Now wonder he was so angry now. Well, maybe that will teach them something.

 Part 10 (2013/07/19)

Larry surveyed the battlefield from the balcony of the abandoned building. He was somewhat disappointed to see only a few infamous witch elves pushing some kind of bath tube. He hoped to encounter some more, in particular after studying some very graphical tome dedicated to the brides of Khaine.

Ah well, it seemed he could throw a fireball or two just to amuse himself. He observed as his fiery creations grew in size as they approached dark kin ranks. Then something went wrong. The fireballs, still growing, turned and twisted and started going back. Accelerating. Fast!

Larry could not believe his eyes but managed to shout "Take cover!" before the hell broke lose.

Part 11 (2013/07/24)

Larry the Loremaster decided to step in and show his warriors how it is done. He first tries to drain the soul out of the huge body of the greater daemon but soon finds out that what he learned at his daemonology lectures was true. Daemons have no soul. Not a problem! He then chooses a favorite spell of his friend Archie the Archmage. But in the middle of reciting the formula he gets a little confused. Was it soaring doom he wanted to cast. Or searing doom? Damn, these spells have so silly names and he also remembered that even the slightest change in the pronunciation can have devastating effects. Hm which one was it? Well, soaring doom sounds more poetic, it must be this one. Or maybe not ... 

Part 12 (2013/08/03)

Larry was excited to be in the front line. He had a great view and was admiring agile daemons of slaanesh on their sleek mounts. Such a waste that these arrogant caledorians killed all of them! How can he show his skills in sword fighting when there are no enemies left?

But then he remembered the trick Archie the Archmage thought him. Good old Archie was such a chatter box after a few bottles of wine. If his companions only knew that whatever he said was in fact true and didn't consider it as some made up stories of half mad wizard.

Doing as instructed he concealed a portal opening with some mandatory fireworks. What looked like a powerful explosion due to uncontrolled magical feedback caused by dark gods was in fact a disguise. Larry smiled wildly seeing two feminine creatures inviting him to step in. Yes, there will be definitely some sword fighting here. Hopefully he didn't knock down too many of his warriors in the process. Archie told him he has to be careful or they might get suspicious. Ah well, he will worry about that after the visit in this lovely place of 50 shades of pink!

Part 13 (2013/12/04)

Larry was really angry. He barely survived that silly mind tricks of the enemy archmage. He managed to heal himself a little but he knew that as long as the enemy archmage lives he will be the target. He summoned his favorite spell - a Fireball! Let's show that arrogant Caledorians some power of the dragon breath!

With eyes blazing with hot fury, Larry started to channel the magical energy. Even his adversary was not strong enough to deflect the spell cast with such an irresistible force. But Larry was not content. He saw his enemy swaying in the saddle but wanted him dead. He started to channel more and more energy to the point where it was controllable. He didn't care. He was about to channel some more when he felt the pain in the back of his head and darkness claimed him.

One of the Swordmasters looked at the numb form of their general and two broken pieces of the magical wand that were thrown nearby. "So that how that safety rod works" - he thought. "Is he going to be ok?" he asked his regimental Blademaster. "Sure, he might not remember how to cast spells for a while though" answered more experienced warrior. "But better that than another dimensional cascade, I have had enough of trips to the Realms of Chaos!"

Part 14 (2014/02/12)

* prologue and epilogue written by the great story teller (and fantastic painter!) of fame, Il Maestro himself!
‘Oh look, here he comes now!’

Wine sloshed out of the chalice as Larry hurriedly placed it down on the table and rose to greet his emissary. He walked past Bob’s chair, towards the tent flaps and out into the cold morning as the rider emerged from the forest and rode towards their lines. Bob sat at the table with the other lordlings and nobles, sipping calmly at his water as the tent fell silent, awaiting the news. The loremaster had sent a rider into the forest to treat with the Asrai and secure them safe passage through the forest, though ‘treat’ may have been too subtle a word, for Larry had given the rider a silver blade with a pommel shaped as a phoenix and instructed him to deliver it to the Asrai commander with an ultimatum: accept this blade in the name of the White Tower and let them pass, or die by it.

Not much of an offering Bob mused, the rhythm of the galloping horse growing louder and louder as it approached. He placed his own empty chalice on the wooden table and leaned back into his chair, mentally preparing himself for the day-and-night long discussions that would be held once they received word that the Asrai had denied their ‘request’. Bob had been through too many battles to know how this worked, and he was not relishing the long night ahead. And here I thought I might be able to get a single good night of sleep.

The air shimmered and grew hot in an instant, and it was only Bob’s instinctive reflex to jump to the ground that saved him from being knocked to it. A sudden rush of air blew through the tent, knocking everything over with a loud crack. As the heatwave passed overhead Bob jumped to his feet, sword in hand, and spun around to face Larry and the attack.

Encompassed in a ball of bright blue light, Larry hovered inches above the ground, the very air around him shimmering with raw power. Bob’s gaze passed beyond the blinding light and towards the field before them, though to his surprise it was empty, bar the emissary. Sword still drawn, he stepped forward until he stood next to the hovering loremaster, and it was only then he noticed it.

The horse, scared by the sudden lights and noise, had turned sideways and ran parallel to the forest border, away from the camp. The rider hung on for dear life, though there was not a breath of life left in him. Cruel vines wrapped around the horse’s neck and up the rider’s arms and legs, the barbs biting deep into the flesh of each, tying them together. The headless body of the emissary swung back and forth as it unwillingly held on to the frightened horse. In place of his head the rider had a small phoenix pommel – the rest of the silver blade lay sheathed inside his neck. Bob stood motionless and watched, the sounds of the Asur host behind him readying themselves for battle hardly registering as he was struck by the barbarity of the scene before him.

‘They have made their choice,’ whispered Larry calmly, his magical words carrying to every elf ear in the camp.

‘The Outcasts march to battle.’

Red leaves swirled through the air and smoke, rising and falling on invisible waves as they seemingly danced to a music of their own. The fading din of battle in the background did nothing to mar their beauty as gusts of warm air swept them across the battlefield, until they finally came to rest on the forest floor. They floated calmly in pools of slickened blood, their red hues matching the glistening puddles they now inhabited. Though war waged around them, the leaves had no knowledge of it – nature was serene and unscarred, even amongst so much death. It was beautiful.

Bob’s moment of serenity came to a sudden end as the thundering hooves of the Dragon Princes approached. He looked towards them and caught his breath as he spotted a single figure in charred robes, slumped over the back of a horse in the midst of the column. He rose to his feet, all too slowly after the pains of battle, as the princelings arrived with their leader, taking him down and laying the limp body on the ground.

Bob knelt by Larry’s side and placed his hands over his fallen leader’s heart and eyes. He closed his own eyes and started mumbling prayers and offerings – though the words themselves held largely no meaning for him, he still believed that the gods cared for their truly loyal subjects. He knelt there for what felt like hours, reciting over and over the broken words taught to him by corrupt teachers, until at last he gave up. He slumped back on his knees, and looked upon the face of his fallen leader. Tears rolled down his face as he stared at the lifeless corpse in front of him, wooden shards still protruding from multiple wounds sustained in battle. He begrudgingly closed his eyes once more and began saying his final prayers, hoping that at least Larry’s soul would find its way to the light.

The air shimmered.

Bob opened his eyes in surprise as Larry’s body was engulfed in a bright blue light. The surrounding dragon princes jumped up and fell back a few paces as an unbearable heat started to emanate from Larry’s body. Bob sat there in silence, relieved to feel the searing heat touch his exposed flesh. They have answered my prayers he thought as the ball of light grew and encompassed him, and in an instant the whole world blinked out of existence as heat and light took over his senses.

Suddenly the light and heat disappeared, and Bob was left kneeling by his leader’s side. In front of him lay Larry’s now unmarked body – the wooden spikes had disintegrated, and his wounds had healed. His torn and dirtied robes were now resplendent in white and unmarked; the smell of death that had clung to his corpse mere moments ago was gone. With the grace of the gods on our side, none can truly question the motives and loyalties of the Outcasts thought Bob, a smile creeping across face as he lay witness to the events unfolding in front of his eyes.

Slowly, Larry opened his eyes
Part 15 (2014/02/24)


* Prologue and Epilogue by Master Storyteller, Il Maestro!

The sound of steel horseshoes striking the paved roads filled Larry’s ears and made his head ache. He was not quite sure how long he had lapsed in and out of consciousness for, but he knew that every moment was a moment too long. Though he was closer to his prize with every step they took, so were his enemies. Enough time has been wasted, he thought as he sat himself up in the makeshift carriage carting him along, and waved over one of the soldiers.

‘Bring me a waterskin, and fetch Bob.’

The words came out more as a croak then a command, but the warrior nodded and left all the same. Larry looked out past the column of soldiers behind him to the fields on either side. Rolling plains of brown and red grass stretched to the right of the outcasts, and on the left was a small river, not nearly large enough to support any settlements. The land as a whole was alien to him: every blade of grass was slightly different than those he was used to, the colours were not as brilliant as they should be, even the wind smelled stale and wrong. But it was also somehow familiar. He couldn’t quite put his finger on it – it looked nothing like what he saw in the visions, and yet he knew he was on the right track. I thought the same of that damned forest. The thought cut through his reverie like a hot knife through butter as his eyes drifted to the right, past the rolling plains and to the retreating red forest that lay at its edge. The home of his twisted kin. He felt a sharp stabbing pain in his leg at the sight of those red leaves. A remnant of my death. he mused, the gods’ way of reminding me of my failure. The thought soured in his mind, but his brooding was cut short by a familiar face.

‘Good to see you up again, even if you look like you’ve sucked on a skin of lemons,’ Bob shouted as he heeled his horse around and fell into line next to the carriage.

‘Learning from your past ensures you don't repeat your mistakes in the future.’ The soldier sent for the waterskin returned and Larry grabbed it and popped the cork off, taking a big gulp as Bob chuckled to himself.

‘And what exactly have you learnt, oh wise loremaster? Were you working out how to take revenge on trees and leaves?’ Bob watched as Larry emptied the rest of the waterskin as if he had never had water before.

‘Maybe one day,’ Larry smirked as he pulled the empty sac from his mouth, ‘but for now we fight a different foe.’

Bob’s face reverted to stone as his smile faded away.

‘What have you seen?’

‘Steel and fangs.’

‘Tell me more.’ Bob leaned in to listen intently to every word the loremaster uttered.

‘Whilst I slept, I had a vision of mountains of steel melting. I could sense jaws snapping behind me, goading me forward, and every time I lashed out at them, shattered fangs fell to the ground.’ Larry had to steady himself as memories of the visions overwhelmed him. He placed a hand up to his head to try and calm the storm inside and went on. ‘I don’t know what it all means, but I’m sure it ties in with the others. This one was stronger though, more real. Even still I hear the howling behind me as we speak.’

‘You are not the only one who hears those howls.’ Bob spoke as he waved a command at the column to halt. He leaned forward in his saddle, making himself low against the horizon, as he looked past Larry’s shoulder and off into the distance ahead of the column.

A lone rider appeared over the next hill, galloping towards them as fast as his mount would take him, purple cloak fluttering behind in the wind. As he made his way down the hill and towards the column, a wolf appeared behind him. It was larger than any wolf Larry had ever seen, muscles bulging as it howled and bore down on its prey. The distance between the wolf and the rider was closing fast, and it was clear that neither would make it anywhere near the Asur lines.

Bob leaned to his right and unlatched his bow from his saddle. He pulled a white-fletched arrow from the quiver hanging off his bridle and knocked it in a single fluid motion, taking aim. The wolf closed in on the rider as the pair reached the bottom of the hill, snapping at the horses rear as it lunged forward. Bob held the arrow for what seemed an eternity, moving ever so slightly as he honed in on his target. A sudden snap pierced the silence as the arrow was let loose and sailed through the air. The rider had turned in his saddle to try and ward off the giant predator, sword hand held high as the wolf made a final lunge forward. The leap was cut short by a flash of brown and white as Bob’s arrow pierced the wolfs eye, sending the large beast headfirst into the ground, twitching. The rider turned back in his saddle and made his way back to the column unharmed, greeted by the cheers of the watching Asur.

Bob casually lowered his bow and reattached it to his saddle, calling out orders to the column to prepare for battle. He turned to Larry and smiled.

‘Lets hope the steel melts just as easily.’


Larry floated inches above the corpses as he made his way to his prize. The stench of the dead wolves and humans hardly rendering, his mind’s eye solely focused on the danger ahead. As he approached the wreckage of the shrine, he paused in mid-air. His heightened senses could feel something, though he couldn’t quite put his finger on it. As his mind probed the pile of rubble in front of him, he felt a sudden shock reverberate through his senses, giving him the briefest of moments to put up a magical barrier as the wreckage in front of him exploded outwards.

As the debris ricocheted clear of his magical defences, Larry spotted a lone figure standing in the midst of the now dispersed war altar. Holding hammers of pure golden light in each hand, the robed man lifted his eyes and caught the gaze of the Asur mage. He held Larry’s gaze for a few moments before spitting on the ground in disgust.

‘Your treachery ends here!’ the priest bellowed in his primitive human tongue.

Larry scoffed and let his body drop until his feet touched the ground, the magical barrier dissipating as he did.

‘Nice trick.’ Larry flicked his wrist and a single blade of blue light, in the fashion of those carried by the servants of Hoeth, appeared in his right hand. ‘It won’t save you though.’

‘The Light of Sigmar shines upon me, and your quest comes to an end here.’ The human smiled as he saw the flicker of recognition in Larry’s eye. ‘Sigmar has shown me what it is you seek, and I was sent to stop you. How else do you think I found your pathetic little band?’

Larry’s mind was focused on keeping his face still and free from the doubts raging inside him. Does this pathetic little creature really know what I’m looking for? Is his false god guiding his hand? Have the gods abandoned me already!? Larry pushed the last thought aside and strode forward, his sword held low preparing to strike. The warrior priest crossed his hammers in front of his body and mumbled a short prayer before rushing forward himself, the two meeting in a titanic clatter in between.

Golden hammers flashed against the blue sword as each warrior parried, riposted and struck, trying to find the opening that would give them the edge. Larry could feel a bead of sweat roll down his brow as his sword flicked to and fro, barely keeping pace with the whirling hammers. Gods he’s fast! he thought as he ducked under a wild swing and came up on the other side of the swirling priest. He lunged forward to strike at the priest’s exposed back, but the human continued rotating and his hammer came around and knocked the blade tip aside. Over reaching and off balance, Larry could do nothing about the second hammer except watch as it came around and clattered into his standing knee, shattering the bones underneath in a spray of light and blood. He crumpled to the ground, the blue blade disappearing as he fell down, clutching his leg.

Pain seared through Larry’s mind as he searched for the correct incantations to heal his wound, but the thought was cut short as a shadow fell across his vision. He turned his gaze skyward and saw the warrior priest standing over him, hammers emitting bright light as they hung by his side. The priest smirked through his large beard and lifted one hammer across his body, preparing for the final blow.

‘Sigmar showed me this moment, Asur. May the light of our father consume your unholy soul.’ The priests eyes lit ablaze with holy fire as be tensed every muscle in his body and swung the hammer, sending it on its final arc towards Larry’s exposed head.

Light flashed and the world spun as Larry was knocked to the ground, his head hitting the dirt with a hard thump. He lay there for a moment, sight slowly returning to his eyes as the bright light faded, until he was able to see the feet of the priest standing before him. His head still swimming, Larry slowly lifted his body off the ground and sat up. I should be dead he thought to himself, trying not to empty his stomach over his good knee as he tried to focus on the warrior priest in front of him. The blur of his eyes slowly cleared as they focused on the face of the warrior priest, and a gasp passed his lips.

The priest stood mid swing, frozen in his final act of execution. A scorched lightning pattern marked the priests skin where none was before, and wisps of smoke began to rise from his clothes. The priest’s beard was all but gone, leaving only seared flesh underneath. Larry’s eyes met the priest’s, the burning blaze therein now reduced to a small kindle that finally winked out. As it did, the twin golden hammers disappeared, and all that was left was the smoking ruin of the corpse.

Larry inched himself back as the priest’s clothes caught alight, slowly at first, but quickly building until the whole figure was engulfed in blue flames. The magical fire burned everything – cloth, flesh and bone – and within seconds of its lighting it had disappeared too, leaving a pile of ash where the priest had stood moments before. Larry looked at the pile, confused. What the hell just happe-

His thought was cut short as he spotted a small object amidst the ash. He slowly inched himself forwards until he was close enough to reach it, his hand brushing aside the cremated remains and closing around a small stone object. He brought the object close to his face and examined it. It was a little cube, no bigger than a ring, with embossed runes on each of its faces. They were simple in design, not the elegant work of an elf, and Larry turned it over in his hand as he studied each side. Finally he stopped at the last image on the cube, and stared at the embossed depiction of a face.

A Slann face.

Part 16 (2014/02/06) 


* Prologue and Epilogue by Master Story Teller - Il Mastro of fame!

‘Did your dream tell us how long we had to search in this god-forsaken forest before we found that temple?’ Bob swatted away another mosquito as he rode next to Larry, impatience etched on his face as he spoke.

‘I like it here as little as you, but do you really doubt the power of the aethyr after all you’ve seen?’ Larry turned away from Bob and peered through the dense shrub ahead, hoping to catch a glimpse of anything important past the swinging machetes of the outcasts clearing a path. Though he had spent his whole life training with the intangible forces swirling through the world, recent events had made Larry question his teachings. The winds had changed of late; though never quite steady, it was normally easier to predict how they waxed and waned. The last few moons, however, had been something that even Larry was uncomfortable with. The aethyr had pulsed with such irregularity as to make it almost impossible to safely use even the most basic incantations. Sometimes he was unable to draw enough power for simplest of spells, whilst mere moments later there could be enough raw energy flowing through Larry as to be able to cast the most monstrous of incantations, the likes of which he had never been able to before. He had come close to catastrophic consequences more than once over the preceding weeks, especially since the outcasts had travelled down to Lustria. It was hard to tell if it was this place or the whole world that was changing, and Larry disliked either option equally.

Then, of course, there were the visions.

Just as the winds waxed and waned, so did his visions; sometimes he could go days without seeing anything in his dreams, and others he could be ambushed whilst awake with extraordinary scenes that unfolded before his eyes, as baffling as they were beautiful. He had less and less control over them as time wore on, and even his oldest tricks to still his mind had little effect on these visions. At first he had thought it was the gods, keeping him alive and tormenting him equally. But the more that he thought on it, the more he dismissed the idea. The gods had never been interested in the lives of petty mortals before, and he saw no reason for them to start now. He was convinced that his near-death experiences were all tied in to the changing winds, and he was determined to find out how and why.

‘Are you having another one? Bob’s voice was softer as he leaned closer, one hand placed on Larry’s shoulder in comfort. Larry looked around and realized he did not recognize any of the trees or plants – he had been in his own reverie for a while it seemed.

‘No, dear friend, just thinking abou-‘

He stopped mid sentence as a bright flash caught his eye from amidst the tree-tops. Bob reacted instantly, his decades of training coming to the fore as he immediately halted the column and drew his weapon, preparing for an ambush. Larry leaned forward in his saddle, trying to peer through the swaying canopies at what had caught his attention. Another flash shone through, and when the bright light had dissipated, Larry’s eyes focused on its source. A giant, reflective gem, sitting atop what looked to be the tip of a pyramid, appeared through the leaves as a giant beacon. Bob’s gaze followed Larry’s and found the gem, and he slid his sword back into his scabbard as he signaled for the column to change direction and march.

‘Looks like your dreams have an answer for everything,’ Bob mused as his kicked his horse into a canter towards their prize. Larry ignored the comment, fixated on the gem as they moved forward. Whilst he was relieved to be making progress, he couldn’t help shake the deep feeling of dread that was beginning to rise in his stomach. The winds were changing again, and he had no idea what was going to happen next.

Off in the distance, a screech echoed through the jungle as a single pteradon circled back to its home, bearing a warning for its master.


‘We must go back home, Larry. We can’t afford to lose any more men like that.’ Bob sat across the fire from Larry, cleaning away the dried blood from his breastplate as the night engulfed them. He was weary from battle, and Larry could sense that his resolve had all but broken. Though their travels in Lustria hadn’t taken Bob’s life, it may well have taken his spirit.

It had been two weeks since they had come across that temple – though now it resembled more of a tomb. Larry had been full of hope as they had approached the outer doors of the ruins, no obstacles in sight. He had heard rumours of the denizens of the steamy jungles and wanted little to do with them, and it had seemed that he would get his wish. With the majority of his army waiting outside, Larry, Bob, and a small detachment of swordmasters had searched the inner rooms of the pyramid, until they had reached the main room of the old gods. Sitting on an ancient dais in the middle of the room, the mummified corpse of a slann had stared at them as they walked in and searched for its hidden secrets. As Larry had approached the corpse, finally able to quell his fears, he truly believed he was going to find some answers.

Then all hell had broken loose.

The first he had heard was a soft rumble off in the distance, growing louder by the second. His skin prickled as he felt another being close by draw a large amount of aethyr, more than he thought was possible. Before he had time to shout a warning, the room had filled with motion as poisonous darts erupted from holes in the walls, felling his brave elves all around. He and Bob had been lucky to escape the confines of the walls and their hidden attackers, but when they reached the outsides of the pyramid they realized the true extent of their supposed luck.

Hoards of walking lizards had fallen upon the awaiting elves, and in their jungle-induced sickness and fatigue, they had been barely able to stop them. Snapping jaws and onyx clubs cleaved a bloody swathe through the outcasts, and even as Larry and Bob joined battle with their new foes, the heavens themselves had turned against them. Larry only caught glimpses of the tiny lizard, but could sense the magnitude of his power as he brought down comet after comet amongst the outcasts’ ragged battle lines, each fiery ball of death delivering more elves to the goddess of the underworld. Unable to oppose such a force, Larry had ordered a full retreat. The outcasts had dispersed and fled with no semblance of order, each elf looking after himself as they tried to escape the slaughter.

For two weeks Larry and Bob had been gathering stragglers, though most had quickly succumbed to their battle wounds or mysterious illnesses of the jungle. Their numbers had dwindled significantly since their initial incursion into Lustria, and for the last few days discontent had seeded throughout the remaining survivors. The morale of the outcasts was well and truly destroyed, and being so far from home and surrounded by enemies did nothing to ease their suffering. And now, even Bob had grown wearisome.

‘Larry, listen to reason. Let us leave now an-‘

‘And what? What are we to do then?’ Larry posed the rhetorical question to Bob, knowing that he had no answer. ‘Are we to slink back to the isles of Ulthuan and just hope that this all goes away? You remember why we started this quest. The aethyr is changing, and I fear for the whole world. Look at what that little lizard did to us out there! He fully decimated our army, and I could do nothing to stop him! We may have lost a lot, but that is the meaning of sacrifice. We face a far greater threat than you or I had imagined, and I would sacrifice every single living outcast if it meant saving this world, because that is what we represent – we are the last hope, when all other hope has faded. Will you turn away from your duty at this, our weakest moment? Because I shall not, so if needs be, I will go alone! That is what must be done, and I will see it completed, or die trying.’

Larry took a deep breath and paused for a moment to gain his composure, and looked past Bob to the other fires surrounding theirs. The outcasts were motionless, some seated and some standing, though all were facing him. Light from the flames flickered off their faces as they stared at Larry, the dancing shadows hiding their expressions as if they wore a mask. Larry sighed as he released his breath, and turned to catch the eye of one of the closer elves, ready to face the stinging responses. But he saw something else, something unexpected.

He saw hope.

As his gaze moved from elf to elf, he no longer saw weary and tired faces, sick and disabled bodies. In their places stood proud and noble warriors, each willing to give themselves in service of the greater good. He saw past the blood and disease, and saw the unblemished souls of his comrades underneath, willing to lay all on the line for the world’s sake. His eyes moved between faces, each filled with strength and conviction. He turned back to Bob, and saw the inner strength of the proud warrior shine through his fear and hopelessness. Their eyes caught, and for the briefest of moments, they totally understood each other.

‘As will the outcasts.’ Bob broke the silence, his voice renewed and full of newfound strength. ‘Where do we follow you to now?’

Larry looked his best friend in the eye and responded with the first thought that came to mind.

‘If the winds of aethyr are changing, let us go to their source. We march north.’

Part 17 (2014/09/13)


The news were grave indeed. Restless dead were seen in places they have never been encountered before. Disturbing news about the death of the great Elven heroes circulated among the warriors like wildfire. Rumors about End Times were openly discussed as it was always customary for the Outcasts.

Larry, Bob and Nasher studied the maps intensely as if staring at the same charts they knew by heart would bring more information and maybe even some answers. A pile of open letters on the nearby table revealed seals that belonged to Asur, some to Asrai and even a few to Druchii.

"I can't believe it can happen even in a dream" - said Nasher without breaking the study of yet another scroll - "Grand unification? I don't think Aenarion himself could do it now, after thousands of years of constant civil war"
"It has already happened once" - Larry pointed out while picking up a new letter from the messenger.
"You cannot compare the few individuals who joined our ranks to whole nations!" - the knight protested firmly.
"Why not? It takes a pebble to start an avalanche after all." - replied the Loremaster with a hint of a smile. - "In any case, we need to make sure Ulthuan stands united and the recent rumors about Imrik worry me a lot. They need a common cause to join forces even if they can't stand each other"
"I don't understand how the danger of Daemonic invasion is not enough" - murmured Nasher - "How are we going to do that alone? Do we have any friends on Ulthuan to rely upon?"
"You know very well we have no friends there" - Bob cut in - "Besides, Outcasts always fought alone"
"Nothing is better to unite the nation than the enemy that comes from their own ranks" - added Larry - "so we need to strike here"

Nasher looked at the map and blinked. Then looked at Larry, then at Bob, as if looking for some trace of a joke. He found none. Both were dead serious.

"Caledor? You want to strike at Caledor?"
"Yes, Caledor. Don't worry, boy, as long as you remember that any Elf in red or green is not your friend, you will be just fine" - chuckled Bob.
"But how do you plan to win against Dragons with such a small force at your disposal?"
"We will try to win as always but the main purpose is to hurt something Caledorians treasure the most, so that they cannot ignore us" - added Larry, gesturing to another messenger and giving the last orders - "Their pride"

Prince Serien sat astride the mighty Star Dragon Seryn and surveyed the battle field.

He turned to Turin, his friend and trusted standard bearer "This is what they send against the might of Caledor? Are they serious? A bunch of outcasts from the mountains of Chrace, cast offs from the White Tower and expelled Caledorians that should be ashamed off themselves"

Turin sat astride the mighty Griffon Stormclaw and agreed. "My friend these are dark times, maybe the End of Times, how else can you explain elves attacking elves. Caledor and Aenerion would be shocked. However we must do what we must? These outcasts need to be taught a lesson and shown the full might of Caledor. Onwards my friend, let's cast aside these pheasants and await the storm that is clearly coming from the Realm of a Chaos"

With distain Serien nodded and urged Seryn to the sky "attack - show no mercy"

And with that the might of Caledor descended upon the rag tag band of outcasts.


Larry and Bob stood next to each other nearby ancient ruins. Majority of the regiments of the Outcasts were just coming back from hot pursuit and formed a new battle line. But there was no need and both Elven commanders were looking at the distant shapes of four big fliers becoming smaller and smaller.

"Are you sure that will work?" - asked Bob - "we didn't win after all"
"No, we didn't but they were not victorious either" - replied Larry - "The fact that band of seemingly inferior force didn't yield and even threaten to kill their commander and his dragon will be very hard pill to swallow. They will consider that a stain on their honor and they can't let anybody know that this actually happen. They will get back and this time in real force to kill us all. They will chase us to the end of the world. And this is exactly where I want them to go.
"Come, my friend" - added Larry, after a short pause - "we need to move fast"

Part 18 (2015/06/13)

The dragon was coming. You could see it flying low and picking up the speed, blood rage in its eyes. On top hated Caledorian prince, the embodiment of everything Outcasts stood against. The foolish pride, arrogance, disregard for non-Caledorians, leading Ulthuan to the fall and collapse under the waves, betraying those loyal and siding with archenemy Malekith.

The dragon was a deadly weapon but this time it was seriously wounded, it looked like it was about to crash and bury everything under its belly. Two veteran Eagle Claw crew members did their duty already but they were adamant they should at least try to make last additional effort for their companions and for all that was lost forever. The End of Time and the End of the World is upon them.

They picked huge bolts and planted them like pikes, steadied their gaze and aimed at the incoming dragon. There were no battle cries, no shouts, no war songs. Just silence and grim determination to take the wounded dragon with them.

Everybody held their breaths as the roar of rage turned into cry of pain and the sound of immense body crashing to the ground. When the dust settled Outcast could see motionless, dead dragon, single bolt protruding from his eye. There was no sign of the Eagle Claw crew and only the lone figure of the prince with his bloodied sword in his hand was seen standing tall next to his dead mount.

He slowly turned and started running towards Swordmasters ...

Part 19 (2015/08/13)

Two sworn-hosts of Ellyrian Reavers were patrolling the coast while the main army of the Outcasts marched from the desert after recent encounters with the undead armies of Tomb Kings. It was refreshing to feel the sea breeze and both riders and steeds were invigorated by it. Suddenly swift Elven cavalry stopped and the warriors looked towards the horizon. White and silver sails with blue runic signs were clearly visible in the distance. Not an armada but enough ships to carry a full host of one of the noble houses.

"House Loriel sails to war", said the leader of the Reaveres , "They sent House Loriel against us this time."
"How do we know they are hostile?", asked another warrior with a bit of hope in his voice.
"They always are", grizzled veteran replied. Warriors observed approaching ships in silence, counting them and assessing possible strength of their kin.
"Why did they send House Loriel though? I thought that among them all they are the most friendly towards us?"
"Oh, that's simple" replied the leader with crooked smile, "they send the ones that actually didn't scorn us but studied us the most".

The reavers turned around knowing their kin spotted them already and raced back towards the army. There will be few time to form towards the battle. 

Outcasts were all assembled in an unusual formation. Not for battle but for inspection of an allied force commander. It was surprising even more because the honors were for recently defeated and captured Archmage of House Loriel. The negotiations came to an end, honor guard of the enemy was invited to the Outcasts camp to make sure the wizard gets back to his army safe.

The Archmage moved slowly and took the last look at the army he thought he knew how to defeat. He didn't show any sign of emotions and he didn't share his thoughts with the commander of the honor guard. He gave his word and now it was the time to withdraw and set sail back to Ulthuan.

"They will be back.", said Bob the Battle Standard Bearer, his eyes always focused on enemy warriors, his kin or not.
"Yes, it is just a matter of time.", replied Larry the Loremaster.
"They will be harder to defeat next time.", continued Bob.
"Yes, indeed.", agreed Larry without a trace of doubt.
"Why do we let them go then?", asked grizzled veteran of the Outcasts, although he knew the answer already.
"Because Ulthuan needs hardened warriors to defend her from her true enemies", said the general.
"You are naive to think the Loremasters in White Tower will thank us for forging these warriors for them, Larry", added grimly the Battle Standard Bearer.
"It does not matter, my friend, we don't fight for them either", said warrior of Hoeth, and turned towards his lieutenants. Time to march again, to fight against real enemies.

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