The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

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The Bad Shepherd
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The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Mon Jul 11, 2011 4:24 am

Hello all, it's time for something completely different. Over at the Rock, Paper, Shotgun forums I have begun a game of Solium Infernum. I already enjoy doing Solium Infernum AARs with the likes of Pyperkub (curse you, Pyperkub) and Archinerd (bless you, Archinerd), so naturally I was eager to start writing another one. Unfortunately, the RPS forums lack spoiler tags, and I was told to simply "do a write up afterward".

I have what I hope is a better idea. Similar to what the RPS folks did in their original write up (the one that convinced me to get the game) I would like to record my own individual efforts over here, for all to enjoy. For the unitiated, it will instruct. For the bored, it will amuse. For the skilled (like Pyperkub, curse you Pyperkub), it will perhaps impress.

There will be screenshots. There will be ponderings, musings, and schemings. Perhaps there will be victory.

There will also be this guy:

Image

Perhaps you recognize him. That fellow is Jon Irenicus, the antagonist of Baldur's Gate 2. I am very, very tempted to write in his voice. He will be my avatar for this game, and with luck together we will have victory.

I am still awaiting one more turn file before we begin the game, but we can still talk about Irenicus and his stats. (Note: Apparently I made some error submitting Irenicus, and his stats are a little different. He actually has an intellect of 2, a charisma of 3, all other stats 0. Whoops. That certainly explains his lackluster starting legion.)
For the unitiated (click for info dump about game mechanics):
Spoiler:
This is a fairly conservative build. Jon Irenicus does not have any fancy tricks, nor does he start the game off ridiculously overpowered. An Intellect of 2 means he already has access to a decent Scry spell to gauge his opponent's stats, and also has access to a spell that protects from theft. His Charisma of 3 means that he starts the game able to acrue a reasonable amount of income. A Charisma of 3 is more or less mandatory when playing against other humans.
His "Saturated Ichor" perk is what gives Irenicus a slight edge. It gives a +2 to all of his spell rolls. This means that, especially early on in the game, his spells are less likely to fail. This perk is useful because it will work for Irenicus throughout the entire game, and gives him an edge in both mystical defense and offense.
Obscure is a "negative" perk you can choose to earn more points to spend at character creation. It lowers income somewhat, but grants eight points. It paid for my Charisma, so it's a welcome tradeoff.
Irenicus' sin is Lust (for those who played Baldur's Gate 2, it was more a Lust for power than anything else...actually I'm pretty sure Irenicus fell to pretty much every deadly sin save Gluttony and Sloth), which means he has to hold a special place of power by the end of the game. Whether that happens or not is up to chance.
Irenicus' rank is Prince, which is the highest rank possible. High rank means you are difficult to target politically, are subject to certain privileges during events, and start off with more Tribute. As Irenicus' starting stats are less than spectacular, he's going to need to avoid getting targeted for some time.


For the initiated: His perk will give him an edge when it comes to conquering POP's quickly, his starting legion will be somewhat decent, and he'll have a nice amount of tribute to start. His main priority will be securing at least two POP's and a decent legion off the bazaar to help bandage his military shortcomings. People who vendetta him should expect Infernal Afflictions as well as stern resistance from his personal legion who may or may not be completely shit.

For those in need of a laugh: here's my avatar for the other RPS game, Solium Socordia.

Spoiler:
Image
It's more or less a joke build. It is currently winning the game.
The reason why for the unitiated: Daleks kick ass.
The reason why for the initiated: Daleks kick ass. Also, he owns Naphula and has trained her with Veil of Smoke. He also hold the Palace on the Lake of Fire, which due to a deliberate SNAFU involving multiple borders, the Beast, and Darkweeble, no one is man enough to try and take the Palace from him. His Sorcerer perk also means pretty much every legion he owns becomes extremely frightening, and POP's become much harder to take.

EXTERMINATE!!


Looking forward to writing this up. I hope you will all enjoy reading it. It's Acheron's Loch, and it's a long game. Wish Irenicus the best of luck, hopefully this will go better than that whole "Bhaalspawn incident".
Last edited by The Bad Shepherd on Wed Jul 13, 2011 12:05 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by Freyland » Mon Jul 11, 2011 11:26 am

I do not know if I admire you more for your fantastic writing skills or envy you more for your apparent time/opportunity to play so many games! Regardless, :pop:


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Pyperkub
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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by Pyperkub » Mon Jul 11, 2011 2:29 pm

Best of luck to you Shep - I hope I have taught you well :twisted: Bear the eight-limbed flag with honor and deceit.
There are three ways to not tell the truth: lies, damned lies, and statistics.

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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by Malcolm Lock » Mon Jul 11, 2011 3:36 pm

As someone who does not yet own SI, but has a keen interest in the game, and as a big fan of the old RPS AAR, and as a big fan of your other current AAR, i'm highly looking forward to reading this :pop:

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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by Pyperkub » Mon Jul 11, 2011 3:44 pm

Malcolm Lock wrote:As someone who does not yet own SI, but has a keen interest in the game, and as a big fan of the old RPS AAR, and as a big fan of your other current AAR, i'm highly looking forward to reading this :pop:


There are a bunch of them in the PC games forum if you go back a page or two. Maybe 6-10 of them. There've been games going on for 18 months... most of them with AAR's...
There are three ways to not tell the truth: lies, damned lies, and statistics.

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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by Zarathud » Mon Jul 11, 2011 10:38 pm

There can be only one satisfactory solution...annihilate everyone from RPS.
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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by Kal » Tue Jul 12, 2011 1:00 am

Avidly waiting for updates :D

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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Tue Jul 12, 2011 1:01 am

Waiting on a resubmitted turn order. Soon as that gets in, I will begin.
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It Begins

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Tue Jul 12, 2011 10:25 pm

Hell. A barren land of bleak features and still bleaker creatures. Miles and miles of roiling grey sand as the eye searches desperately for some sense of change or hope.
Hell. Where madness and suicide are made manifest and fought over as strategic strongholds. Where a single misstep may cast you hurtling into an endless abyss, or consumed by a great plume of flame that springs from the hostile earth.
I clawed my way from the bottom of this place. I was nothing more than a particularly resilient spirit who had led an unusually cruel life, a sorcerer who once brought his world to its knees.
Stripped of power and beset upon by many foes, I was forced to rely on nothing short of godlike willpower just to survive. It took far more luck than I would care to admit to reach my current station.
Suffice to say, I was one of our now sadly absent leader's favorite subjects. I believe he found me to be something of an enigma - I had committed repeated atrocities, was utterly unrepentant, and rather than surrendering to my punishment, sought to overcome it.

I have come this far. I may never taste my revenge, nor possess the godhood I craved...but I, Jon Irenicus, the Shattered One, will emerge from this victorious. Hell will bow before me, and acknowledge my power.

My minions.

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Their fanaticism is only matched by their fragility and questionable choice of uniform. What they lack in power, at least, they make up for in loyalty. They shall be my vanguard, the first of wave of destruction I shall unleash upon my foes. While their physical prowess is lacking, their skill at both the arts of archery and sorcery shall doubtless prove useful. They shall at the least, prove competent.

My enemies.

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Of the six that dared to stand before the Conclave and declare their intention of ruling hell, I was the only ranking Prince. This puts me at an advantage diplomatically...and yet I cannot help but feel insulted at their arrogance and audacity. The being known only as the Bored One is only a lord. A lord. By the completion of my first century here I was already a Baron, well on my way to becoming a Marquis. That he dares to stand in my way is the greatest of insults. He will not be the first to fall, but he will certainly not survive this conflict. I guarantee it.

A problem.

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His minions are...impressive. It is a pity that, with his rank, it is unlikely they will ever see use against me. What a shame.

My position.

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Around me, the area is saturated with strategically important positions. Pandemonium lies on my doorstep, shielding me from Sythiese. If ever I were to entertain the notion of rebellion, I would be at a great advantage. But such thoughts are unworthy of my station. That...creature, the Bored One, he is far more likely to attempt such an endeavour. Fortuitous, then, that I am positioned as I am, that I might act as the Conclave's Sentinel.

To the south are the Vats of Torment. They are of little importance, but those that could hold the Vats would be worthy of some small amount of praise. I shall leave them, for now. Understairs Man is the only other leader with access at this time, and the distance is great. The Altar of Abomination is across several great rivers, and is not an option. The Wood of Suicides is to the north...and that is where my Disciples shall go.

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Of course, the Wood of Suicides is well defended. It is one of the most important locations within Hell, and it only grows in both size and importance with every passing year. My Disciples are most certainly not capable of taking such a location...without assistance.

Assistance.

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Due to my rank, the Conclave discreetly sent me some extra resources. While I found these gifts lacking in much needed Darkness, there was a relative bounty of Hellfire, Souls, and Ichor. Perfect for what I have in mind. I shall purchase these Golems, send my Disciples north, and then...we shall see.

These will be an interesting next few months.
Last edited by The Bad Shepherd on Wed Jul 13, 2011 8:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by stessier » Wed Jul 13, 2011 10:01 am

That is some great writing. Very much looking forward to the next installment!
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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by LordMortis » Wed Jul 13, 2011 10:06 am

:pop:

And I would like to take this moment to again despise pyperkub at this game. I think he's broken and the game should be rewritten to take how broken he is into account.

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Turn 2 - Of Dogs and Golems

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Wed Jul 13, 2011 8:10 pm

The pawns begin to move. Fresh bootprints in ash covered dust long settled. My enemies reveal their intentions to me, and I am unimpressed.

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Interesting. It seems I was not the only one to notice the Bazaar's impressive inventory. Baraquiel...I have seen him at work. A decent general, and there are many worse than he in the Arena.

His spot in the bazaar was replaced by someone better.

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Haagenti. A raging beast. His use as a general is not insubstantial - as long as you are of a mind to apply brute force. In the Arena, however, he is close to unstoppable. I currently have other matters to attend to, but if he remains in the bazaar for much longer, he will be mine.

Larence. He has revealed a portion of his strength.

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A swordsmaster. His Frozen Lords indicate an aptitude for melee combat, and it will only grow with time. He is a Duke, and somewhat distant from me. The threat is negligible, but he could make a useful tool.

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I sent him a message. With luck he will respond positively. It would be prudent to, if not establish alliances, at least make some effort not to anger the opposition. Doubtless he will be pleased to have the backing of a Prince...especially a Prince with Adamantine Golems.

My orders.

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The Golems will be shipped to my Disciples. I am told there is a remote possibility that the Disciples may be destroyed should the Watchmen of the Woods achieve a sizeable advantage in melee. I dismissed the possibility. Even if my Disciples were to fail me, it would not be difficult to replace them. I would likely lose the Woods to Fudge Dredd, but the Conclave's decision is a long time coming.

Hopefully my Disciples will not disappoint me. It would be tedious to pull them back out of the Abyss mewling and screaming, having become even more pathetic after a stint in Oblivion.
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Walk the Mountains

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Thu Jul 14, 2011 3:46 pm

The Wood of Suicides is now mine, as it should be.

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It was no contest. The Disciples performed their job well, though they did not grow any stronger from the struggle. Fudge Dredd is now in a terrible position, both politically and physically. He owns a narrow strip of land, cut off from the east by mountains, the north by me, the south by Sythiese, and west by a river. Conflict is certain, and I have the advantage.

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My Disciples know Mountainwalk. When we finally clash, he will find himself quite unable to effectively respond.

I rearranged my threat list to accomodate future battles. My minions will be prepared for this Fudge Dredd.

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In addition and most fortuitously, Haagenti remains yet unhired. I am seeking to remedy this.

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If my foes will not fear my Disciples, then they will at least fear the general who leads them. With Haagenti at my side, I can begin my conquests - first in the Arena, and then in the battlefield proper.

By the time of the Conclave's decision, my opponents will be but gnats before my power.
Last edited by The Bad Shepherd on Thu Jul 14, 2011 6:00 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: It Begins

Post by El Guapo » Thu Jul 14, 2011 4:00 pm

:pop: Very nice writing - looking forward to this.

One question:

The Bad Shepherd wrote:. I believe he found me to be something of an enigma - I had committed repeated atrocities, was utterly unrepentant, and rather than surrendering to my punishment, sought to overcome it.


Is that really an enigma? That's exactly how I would expect an unrepentant person to behave.

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Re: It Begins

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Thu Jul 14, 2011 5:54 pm

El Guapo wrote::pop: Very nice writing - looking forward to this.

One question:

The Bad Shepherd wrote:. I believe he found me to be something of an enigma - I had committed repeated atrocities, was utterly unrepentant, and rather than surrendering to my punishment, sought to overcome it.


Is that really an enigma? That's exactly how I would expect an unrepentant person to behave.


In real life, well yeah. But I imagine some time in hell would change people.

Irenicus was a badass though. Complete sociopath with almost no limitations.

I dunno. Might just be my Catholic upbringing, but I'd imagine Hell would cause most individuals to experience some twinge of regret, if only to make the pain stop. Irenicus' punishment (being stripped of immortality) was similar to this. He was supposed to be broken (if I remember correctly, Irenicus means "the shattered one") and he did go somewhat insane, I think. But then instead of accepting his fate, he went on to commit even greater atrocities.

Same thing here, except he is bound by the Conclave's decisions, and has been stripped of his sorcery.
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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Sat Jul 16, 2011 4:03 pm

The pace quickens. Another Place of Power has fallen to my enemies, and their legions are swiftly claiming large swathes of territory...With the single exception of the luckless Fudge Dredd. His legions will remain motionless, save through the grace of a successful vendetta.

Haagenti is now mine.

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With this brute at my side, I will be a force to be reckoned with in the Arena. Fudge Dredd will be the first to realize this, as I am making a demand of him.

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If he will not surrender his tribute, he will surrender his Prestige. I am currently the only lord in possession of a Praetor, and none in the bazaar could hope to match Haagenti's raw strength. One way or the other, my superiority will be recognized.

My forces head south.

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The Vats of Torment remain unclaimed, but this is a temporary state of affairs. It will take my Disciples some time to reach their destination, but they should have no trouble taking the garrison once they get there.

No Conclave Tokens have been drawn. I am currently their apparent favorite. With luck, this will go on for some time.
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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Mon Jul 18, 2011 9:12 pm

Time passes and the wheels turn. Most of my foes content themselves by remaining stationary and hoping that prestige will simply earned through luck. Their indolence is insulting.

My demand is presented to Fudge Dredd. It is with a pang of trepidation that I am alerted to the fact that several praetors have been purchased from the bazaar.

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My Disciples head still further south. Soon they will be at the Garrison's threshold.

Yet more time passes, and I receive word that Fudge Dredd has rejected my demand.

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This is worrying. Orias and Phenex were hired from the bazaar. Phenex is little more than an armchair general - an expert at directing swordsmen and archers, terrible at personal combat. Orias is a renowned soul glutton, but also a merciless combatant besides. Appearances deceive, and in no place does this hold more true than in Hell. Orias would be a match for Haagenti. The question was first: "Which praetor did Fudge Dredd hire?" It then turned to: "Did he hire anyone at all?", as Phenex was spotted leading Sythiese's personal legion into battle.

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Sythiese may be nothing more than an irritating whelp with delusions of grandeur, but the strength of his armies is considerable. Action must be taken in the near future... Once I have appropriately dealt with Fudge Dredd. We will go to the Arena. Taking risks is sometimes necessary, and inaction can on occasion be far more harmful than any action one might take. I am wagering as much Prestige as possible on this match - the Conclave will take great interest in its results. Time will tell if this was a mistake or not.

My legion heads still further south. Soon they will be knocking on the door of the Vats of Torment. I am also demanding further tribute be brought to me. My power cannot expand without the necessary resources.

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Sythiese will soon possess the Stronghold of Wrath. He will be in the lead for all intents and purposes. I dearly hope that someone other than myself will take action.

No Conclave tokens have yet been drawn. They are clearly taking their time. This is acceptable. Bringing my full might to bear will take time and energy, and I am content to have the former in abundance.
"Shepard." -Wrex

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A Setback

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Tue Jul 19, 2011 9:37 pm

Perhaps I acted rashly. The news from the bazaar gives me pause.

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Hellfire Ballista and Temeluchas. A powerful tool, and a powerful praetor. I have no doubts as to who Temeluchas belongs to. Haagenti and he will meet in the Arena, and it is not unlikely that my champion will be slain by his far more disciplined and experienced opponent. A shame Temeluchas was not available to me earlier. I had considered hiring him, but deemed it superfluous as I already possessed Haagenti. I stand by my decision.

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The Vats of Torment will belong to Understairs Man. My Disciples did not make it in time. I suspected this would occur. It was a choice between the Vats and the Woods. I stand by my decision.

I told Haagenti to play to his strengths. Hit Temeluchas hard and fast. He will likely use an Infernal Burst in the initial round - beat him down. I doubt I will see Haagenti again. I am most certainly not attending the match, I have far more pressing issues at hand. Watching my subordinate struggle to survive brutal attacks from a glorified humanoid elephant is not my idea of productivity.

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It seems conflict with Understairs Man will also have to occur. I thought of purchasing another legion, the Hell Blades, off of the Bazaar, but I realized something and stopped. What has happened to me?

I am Jon Irenicus. There was a time I could flay a man alive with a mere gesture. A time when I could rip the soul from a man's body and place it into my own. I could stop time, turn my foes to dust, whilst summoning powerful wards to protect myself. While I was not averse to letting my allies spill some blood and make themselves useful, I was far from an armchair general. Now? Now my plans rest on powerful artifacts, hired generals, and legions of pathetic demons.

They have power. I do not. I was stripped of my magic. This changes.

Curse the infernal limitations of this pathetic dimension.

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Instead of demanding further tribute, I am devoting my time to consuming the resources at hand. What I have to do these souls in order to secure their power is unorthodox, to say the least. It will take time, it will be messy, and I am certain their tortured shrieks will annoy me to no end. If I have to annihlate them utterly in order to strengthen myself, then so be it. If I have to endure their idiotic cries for mercy as I extract their essence, so be it. These rituals will allow me to have basic command over what passes for the arts of illusion and pyromancy in this dimension. Though it will take resources, I will be able to call down hellfire as well as befuddle my foes. It will not be much, but it will be enough.

This will enhance my options greatly. My time here has previously left me limited to studying merely the acadamia and mechanics behind magic in Hell. I have some talent in defensive magicks and scrying (most useful as one of our dearly departed lord's aides), and I still remember my days as a sorcerer. Casting spells here is different, but the mere act of casting a spell is familiar. I think my past will give me a slight edge when it comes to matters of mysticality.
Last edited by The Bad Shepherd on Wed Jul 20, 2011 12:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by Kal » Wed Jul 20, 2011 12:34 am

Popping in to say that I am enjoying this a great deal though its not a game I have had any past experience with.

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Haagenti Yet Lives?

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Sat Jul 23, 2011 3:04 pm

Haagenti returned alive from the Arena today, much to my surprise. His only comment?

"Good fight." He spat some blood on the floor. "Hard fight." Apparently his opponent was not Temeluchas, but in fact Orias. Haagenti very quickly won the advantage, and took the soul glutton down.

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Unexpected, to say the least. Not his victory, but rather Fudge Dredd's fielding of Orias. I know for a fact that Orias charged a great deal more than Haagenti, and that presenting him for battle was a significant investment. The fool must be fuming. His standing with the Conclave is now pitiful, and he lost a Praetor in the telling.

Haagenti naturally inquired as to where I was during his struggle. I was pleased to have an honest excuse - it would not do to anger the bullheaded axe wielding monster of a general with fresh blood still spattered all over his chest. I told him there had been a massive security breach in the Vault, and I was required to divert my attention elsewhere. This was completely true.

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Fortunately, the breach was less than successful. It was, in fact, a complete disaster for the demon responsible. The Bored One has tipped his hand. His strength is in deception - and his strength is still insufficient to penetrate my inner sanctums. His attempt to siphon my meager resources away from ended in failure and exposure. I sent him a message expressing my amusement. Such a ritual takes a large amount of resources to perform. Such a critical failure is both embarassing and crippling. I will be prepared for The Bored One in the future, and I will certainly not forget this.

My rituals were completed without difficulty. I now have access to the most basic and unimpressive destruction and deception magicks, but it is better than having no access at all. Further power will require far greater resources, but they will come to me in time. I am transferring the Adamantine Golems back to the Vault, to better protect them from The Bored One. I am also demanding tribute.

...

Larence demands from Fudge Dredd. Vassago, a somewhat competent Praetor, is hired from the Bazaar. Malacoda takes his place. Tribute is rich in Darkness, but I find myself lacking in souls. No matter.

Fudge Dredd lacks subtelty. He has parked his servants before the Wood of Suicides, and given them the Hellfire Ballista.

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Such blatant intentions and reckless bravado do not even warrant sarcasm. If there is any pity in Hell, it should be directed to the pathetic specimen before me. Do not expose your hand until the last second, fool. Keep your opponent guessing, or it is more than likely he will find some way to counter your strength. I know better than to refuse any demands of his, now. I may have to keep him in a permenant state of Praetor related Vendetta and demands just to keep him off balance. Larence shall keep him busy, for now.

The standings in Prestige. Sythiese is clearly the one to watch.

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Ah, Fudge Dredd. I strongly suspect you will be ash by the end of this contest. The Conclave certainly thinks so.

I am demanding further tribute.

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Necessary, if tedious. I need all the resources I can get my hands on if I am to compete with the likes of Sythiese. It is unfortunate that I first have to deal with Fudge Dredd and Understairs Man. Geographically, they are far closer. Militarily, they are at least within my league.
Last edited by The Bad Shepherd on Wed Jul 27, 2011 7:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Fudge Dredd Embarrases Himself Again

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Wed Jul 27, 2011 7:00 pm

Tribute was gathered. I was granted regency for a brief period of time. Larence challenged Fudge Dredd to a duel of Praetors. The result was yet another black eye for the luckless Fudge Dredd.

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It seems Temeluchas is in the employ of Larence. This is worth knowing. I will be cautious in my dealings with Larence. He never deemed to answer my request for at least partial alliance. I do not trust him in the slightest.

Things are starting to look up.

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This is the Book of Enoch. The possesser of this item would experience an exponential increase in power, and it would most certainly give me an edge over my opponents. Which is good, because I will shortly be embroiled in conflict with Understairs Man.

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The Regency is granted to each of the Pretenders to the Throne in turn. When last I was regent, my actions took precedence over all others due to the support staff the Conclave temporarily granted me. I was also contacted by a Conclave member who informed me that, should I possess the urge, he could pull strings and bring back a fallen Praetor for every Pretender. As Fudge Dredd is currently the only one of us to have suffered such a loss, I politely declined. Note now, the position of the Regency.

If, hypothetically, I were to present a demand to Understairs Man after the current batch of orders are sent out, by the time he has either declined or accepted, I will be regent and therefore have the initiative in a Vendetta.

The plan is simple, for those not lacking basic tactical knowledge.

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Right now, I am hiring Bifrons from the Bazaar. He is a lackluster Arena fighter, but a spectacular tactician. Attached to my Disciples, they will make a formidable force indeed, especially working in tandem with my Adamantine golems. I am also consolidating tribute. While I possess the resources to acquire the Book of Enoch, I need to organize them properly before presenting them to the Bazaar.

Soon, I will possess the Book of Enoch and Bifrons. The Understairs Man's Blood will be no match, especially since I plan to support my Disciples with deceptive magicks.

I will have victory. No matter the cuts and bruises I suffer in the going, this is the only conclusion. Ascension is inevitable.
"Shepard." -Wrex

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Malcolm Lock
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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by Malcolm Lock » Wed Jul 27, 2011 8:00 pm

Noob question: Book of Enoch requires 10 darkness, yet in the screenshots you only have 4.
Does consolidating change the nature of resources or have i just missed something?

Or is it simply that you haven't chosen your received tribute at the time of taking the screenshots?

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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Wed Jul 27, 2011 8:42 pm

Malcolm Lock wrote:Noob question: Book of Enoch requires 10 darkness, yet in the screenshots you only have 4.
Does consolidating change the nature of resources or have i just missed something?

Or is it simply that you haven't chosen your received tribute at the time of taking the screenshots?


Consolidation puts the resources in a kind of stasis. I am consolidating 9 Darkness - so that 9 Darkness is unavailable and does not show up in my resource counter.
"Shepard." -Wrex

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Malcolm Lock
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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by Malcolm Lock » Wed Jul 27, 2011 9:04 pm

Aha got it thanks :D

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Preparatory Maneuvers

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Tue Aug 09, 2011 1:08 pm

Understairs Man is quite the confident individual. Not only is he sure of his ability to trounce me in a Vendetta, he is willing to also risk conflict with Fudge Dredd by making demands of him. I will make him regret his arrogance. With the Book of Enoch now in my possession, my capacity for causing suffering to others has greatly increased.

A second Conclave token has been drawn. The pace of this little game begins to quicken.

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His willingness to defy me is somewhat understandable. His Blood are led by Baraquiel, a capable praetor. He has also equipped his Legion with a combat vassal. Its effects are unknown but surely undesirable. By comparison, my Disciples would seem weak and incapable. Even with the not insubstantial support of Bifrons, the Adamantine Golems, and my deceptive magicks, victory in combat is far from assured. I am thus changing tactics.

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My Disicples will retreat to the bridge. There they will remain out of his Blood's reach, but still within striking distance of the Vats of Torment. They will remain motionless while I put my plan into action. The ownership transition of the Vats from Understairs Man's possession to mine should be quick and painful.

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I am moving my Disciples, equipping them with the Adamantine Golems, and further increasing my aptitude with Destructive magicks. I am sitting on a stockpile of Hellfire, and it is time to put it to use.

With my Disciples out of range, the Understairs Man will be forced to endure whatever rituals I throw at him until he can maneuver his fools into position. I do not intend to let his Blood survive that long. My increased skill coupled with my natural aptitude in spell casting all but guarantees the destruction of his Blood by the end of the Vendetta. Which will end very quickly, I have seen to that.

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Let it not be said that Jon Irenicus' sin was Pride. While I am staking a large amount of Prestige on this Vendetta, it is with the full knowledge that any damage to my Prestige will eventually be repaired by my continued possession of the Woods of Suicide. I am limiting the Vendetta to a third of its maximum duration - should there be any serious complication in the plan (such as the unexpected intervention of The Bored One) there will not be sufficient time for Understairs Man to deal serious damage.

But other than that unlikely eventuality, this is a serviceable plan. He will likely be taken be surprise by the Infernal Affliction blasts I send his way. They will be powerful, they will be nearly unblockable by a Demon of his caliber, and they will be plentiful. There is plenty of room in my Ritual Chambers for a little extra pain to send to my enemies.

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"Shepard." -Wrex

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Drastic Measures

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Tue Aug 30, 2011 10:50 pm

It has been some time since I have returned this journal. This was not without reason - I am now in dire straits. I know not why. Fudge Dredd possesses power far beyond the initial appraisal, and the Understairs Man is either fortunate beyond belief, or protected by powers beyond my ken. The fact remains: the vendetta was lost. Bifrons killed, the Adamantine Golems stolen by Fudge Dredd, and my Disciples destroyed. Fortunately my contingency planning meant the vendetta promptly ended, preventing any further damage. Fudge Dredd then demanded me, for tribute far beyond what his rank should allow. I am surrounded by snakes with venom far more potent than my own.

I must admit this, for no less than four Infernal Afflictions were directed against the Understairs Man's personal legion. All of them failed. I am at a loss as to explain why. Bad luck can only explain so much. For now, I must seek alternate measures of winning conflict. Haagenti yet lives, shuffling awkwardly within my fortress. He will at least give my foes some pause before they decide to destroy me utterly...to dismiss this possibility would be shortsighted and - how I loathe myself for saying this - arrogant. Their power is not insubstantial, their time in Hell has been well spent. I will follow suit.

I am bettering myself.

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This is the third time I have increased my martial abilities. Words cannot quite describe the disgust I have for these rituals in particular. They require the consumption of Ichor - demonic blood.

My sister (long has it been since I have recalled her memory...her face now eludes me) might have relished such things. I do not. But these rituals are necessary if I am going to have a fighting chance of victory on the field of battle.

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I hired these creatures from the bazaar. They are unusual in that they move with a speed both perplexing and unnatural. Their hunger seems to propel them forward and their bloodlust in utterly insatiable. I shall find them a feast before long - soon my power will very easily accomodate them.

Should this journal ever be read by a historian seeking knowledge of rise to power (or a rival, having won the throne and scoured my Fortress for any valuables), they will notice that I have given up any pretense of being a spellcaster first, and general second. This is because I am a spellcaster second, and a pragmatist first. I am not so stupid as to continue banging my head against a wall simply because my reputation and history demand it.

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Sythiese takes yet another Place of Power. The Book of Enoch remains in my hands - but its brother has departed the Bazaar. I made a demand of Fudge Dredd. He acceeded, very clever. He knew I would send Haagenti back in, eyes gleaming, axe still coated in his last praetor's blood. He paid up instead, avoiding wasted time. He will likely demand me next, while there is the political opportunity to do so. Sythiese requires action - I may have to arrange something with the Understairs Man.

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Temeluchas was spotted marching with one of Larence's legions. He is impressive...but Haagenti possesses a far greater rage, and is far more durable. They would be evenly matched, I think. Perhaps after a few more victories - assuming there will be any at all - Haagenti will be ready for him.

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Faust's Contract. I know not the language, nor this "Faust's" identity. Regardless, possessing this Relic will further boost my ability to collect tribute from my minions. For those not of my rank, it would increase their standing. I need no such diplomatic boost and I spit upon those that do. It is almost within affordability. Should it be bought, I will simply divert those funds to further research into deceptive magicks. I must not neglect my studies, even if they hold the potential to be utterly worthless.

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This is Understairs Man's Legion of the Maw. They were impressive before being given such toys. Now...now they are beyond my military capabilities. I watch their actions with trepidation. Should my southern neighbor come calling, I will be forced to acquiesce.

Five Conclave Tokens drawn. They watch my actions with interest and growing disappointment.
"Shepard." -Wrex

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Re: The Abyss - RPS vs. OO (Solium Infernum)

Post by Noctilucus » Tue Sep 06, 2011 2:49 pm

Just wanted to pop in and say I've thoroughly enjoyed your story so far Bad Shepherd, looking forward to the future developments in hell!
:pop:
... who gnaws hungrily in inconceivable, unlighted chambers beyond time and space amidst the muffled, maddening beating of vile drums and the thin monotonous whine of accursed flutes

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Retaliation

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Mon Sep 12, 2011 12:34 am

As it stands, my position is strong but far from unassailable. Whilst my opponents have fought amongst themselves for prestige, I have kept conflict to an absolute minimum and managed to hold the Wood of Suicides from the very beginning. Because of my superior rank, I am not easily goaded into battle. But I must press forward and establish an advantage if I am to have victory. Taking risks has been both rewarding and disastrous so far - but I will not sink into apathy simply because my lot in this competition thus far has been a comfortable one. I must press on.

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Additional rituals to bolster my Destruction Magicks. I won Faust's Contract, and will station it within an exhibit I have erected in my Fortress. My minions will be suitably impressed at this display - impressed enough, perhaps, to take better pride in their work and bring me worthwhile tribute.

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Yes. I am bidding on the Eye of Vengeance. Among its myriad benefits is a further boost to the potency of my Destruction rituals. Should I ever employ their like again, it will be with legitimate certainty that they will not fail me.

Some final notes. The political situation has become rather charged as of late.

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I demanded Fudge Dredd, previously. No doubt he will acquiesce. Everyone seems confident in their ability to best (or at least bluff) the opposition in some form. I am hesistant, but proud to count myself among them. I still have teeth - and I am sharpening my knives.

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Sythiese's legion is growing beyond the realm of strength, and more into the realm of legend. Suffice to say, their competence shames me and mine - my Disciples are not even worthy of being spit upon by the likes of these soldiers. It is most upsetting.



Looking back on this, I am becoming concerned at my overuse of metaphors. No matter. When this competition is through, not a demon in hell will be able to question my writing. I will make this journal their official holy book - criticism punishable by torture.

...

It is done. The Contract is secured and being marveled at by a slack jawed crowd of servants.

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Haagenti is among them, drinking copious amounts of ale. It is a minor matter, but I am becoming increasingly concerned by his behavior - he lazes about the Stronghold all day drinking copious amounts of toxic beverages. I caught him yesterday drinking lantern oil from a tankard in one hand, and thirty year old whiskey out of the other. This Stronghold has numerous wine cellars and I am almost certain he has emptied them all. He needs to be put to work before I lose what little patience I have left.

No sooner have I bought the Eye of Vengeance, something superior appears in the bazaar.

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A further boost to my power, and possession of it within my Stronghold would lead to my being looked upon favorably by the Conclave. The current token count is at 7, so I am already inclined to pick up the pace. Needless to say, it is currently outside my price range. But I can wait. I am hoping the other Pretenders will do likewise.

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Fudge Dredd conceeds, but will doubtless attempt a political counterstrike as soon as possible. I intend to meet the whelp head on. In other news, there is conflict far to my south. It is of no concern. What is of concern is Sythiese, and his incredible lead. Measures are being taken. Bold measures.

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There has been an unspoken consensus among the Pretenders that none of us bother Sythiese. His legion is simply too powerful. I am challenging this status quo - I hope it will cause others to follow suit.

Sythiese has two praetors I know of - Vassago and Phenex. Neither are terribly effective arena combatants. He is no doubt aware of Haagenti's merciless performance in the arena. It remains to be seen whether he has the gumption to challenge me where I remain undefeated - in the Arena.

Haagenti - please do not make me regret your being hired.

...

Final Notes

-Sent emissary to Understairs Man, requesting assistance against Sythiese. Someone has to be responsible, it may as well be the second and third place runners up.

-Sent emissary to Fudge Dredd, promising hellfire should he pursue vendetta. Hopefully it will not deter him.

-Sent emissary to Sythiese, questioning his potence in the arena.

GOALS

-Acquire Crown of Fire.

-Defeat Fudge Dredd and possibly acquire Hellfire Ballista.

-Pursue short term alliance against Sythiese with Understairs Man.

-Hamper Sythiese's efforts at domination.

-Bolster Destruction Magicks still further.
"Shepard." -Wrex

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Confidence or Arrogance?

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Thu Sep 22, 2011 11:27 pm

Some time has passed. Sythiese was understandably less than impressed at my display of valor, and has refused my demands. There have been two attempts at looting my vaults (likely Fudge Dredd's doing), and the second one was barely successful.

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I doubt he will keep it up for much longer. I have refused Fudge Dredd's reckless demands and already prepared for the inevitable reprisal. I refuse to fall into a political rut where we stare daggers at one another across our territories while being powerless to act on our mutual hatred. Let the poor fool come and drink from the poison laden chalice I have left afore him.

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Yes. Using my newfound powers acquired from the consumption of copious amounts of Ichor, I have secured the Wood of the Suicides. Should the fool attack it, his Legions will be overwhelmed, Ballista or no.

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As the diagram demonstrates, he could always choose to forgo the obvious trap and instead attack my Disciples. The solution would be simple. Position them behind my Stronghold. He cannot enter my Stronghold without a claim of Blood Feud. It is doubtful they will get that far, however. I plan to pelt his hapless forces with Infernal Afflictions throughout the conflict.

I also decided to goad my foe. I am truly hoping he attempts a vendetta.

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As for Sythiese - it really cannot go terribly badly for me. I either lose the burdensome Haagenti, or win considerable prestige in the Arena. I am curious as to what drove Sythiese to reject my demand, however. I sent an emissary questioning his motives.

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As for my official orders, I sent out a bid for the Praetor Eligos. He is a general well known for his prowess at directing archers. Apart from that, I simply demanded further resources from my minions.

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Oh, and an Infernal Inquisiton eliminated my Legion of Woe. Seeing as I almost forgot about it until just now, it was obviously not a tremendous blow.

The next few weeks will surely be exciting. It remains to be seen as to whether they will be productive.
"Shepard." -Wrex

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The Moment of Truth

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Thu Oct 13, 2011 8:39 pm

Perhaps I have made a mistake in engaging both my mightiest and most hated foe at the same time. Sythiese is not a fool to be trifled with - and Fudge Dredd's hatred of me by this point is surely...intense.

A kernel of doubt lingers within my being. Icy fingers of - I use this word far too often - trepidation. I am on the cusp of either annihlation or total victory.

Fudge Dredd continues his attempted purges of my vault's coffers. This time he is met with some actual success.

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Surprising, to say the least. I do not believe that this breakthrough will even remotely cover the costs of his numerous failed attempts, however.

Two official vendettas. The first with Fudge Dredd, to be settled on the field of battle. The second with Sythiese, to be settled in the Arena. Haagenti has already departed, taking his bloodied axe with him. Whether he goes to his death or a moment of glory is no longer my concern. Haagenti's survival is now his responsibility alone.

The table is set for conflict.

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Eligos is now mine. Larence and the Understairs Man are sending champions to the Arena. Sythiese challenges the Understairs Man. The eighth Conclave token is drawn. Storm clouds are gathering. Now it is a matter of positioning the lightning rods...

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Fudge Dredd's slaves are nearly upon the Wood of the Suicides. The Combat Vessels are in place...but I feel it is time to test my prowess once more.

Will it be as last time? Will the name Jon Irenicus again be synonymous with unjustifiable arrogance and catastrophic failure? Or, finally, will my name be treated with the respect and awe befitting a Prince of Hell?

We'll see.

...

As before, Haagenti was led up a bloodied staircase into the waiting area known as "the pit." Haagenti preferred to simply call it "the waiting place" whenever he deigned to speak at all. In front of him lay a wrought iron gate, rusted with the blood of previous champions. Through the gaps in the gate he could see the Arena, some of the crowd, and (just barely) a hint of movement through the opposite "pit."

Haagenti snorted and hefted his axe. Life and death never particularly concerned him - he was very much convinced of his own natural superiority when it came to staying alive - but something bothered him. He vaguely recalled past memories and conversations about Barbatos - something something, troop movements, babble babble, ferocious fighter - and something else. Something about politics. Who was Sythiese?

As Haagenti's brain began to overheat with the effort of recollection, he heard the crowd's roar and the announcer's howl. The gates lowered with a rusted scream and Haagenti charged into the light, bellowing.

...

Elsewhere, Irenicus finished preparations. The runes had been set, the blood had been spilled, and the pylons burned with unholy hellfire.

"Primitive. Limiting." Irenicus' fingers were stained with all manner of chemicals and fluids. He knelt in the center of the Pentagram and tried to recall the words of the ritual. The pylons burned as Irenicus' breath began to slow. His fingers traced invisible lines through the air - seemingly independent of any thought or motive. His lips moved, though no sound emerged. Leagues away, storm clouds began to gather.

...

Haagenti faced his foe, his forearm raced in defense. Barbatos cocked his head and grinned at him, revealing needly teeth. He carried no weapon - the massive spikes covering his body were weapons enough.

No words were exchanged, no taunts. The two simply circled each other, tensed and ready to draw blood for masters they could not remember the name of.

Without warning, Haagenti lept forward with speed unexpected for a beast of his size. Barbatos crouched, blocking his face with his armored forearm, and Haagenti's axe came crashing down. A reverberating clang sounded through the Stadium as Barbatos fell backwards, a massive chip in his forearm. He examined his arm momentarily and grunted, surprised. Haagenti bellowed and pressed the advantage - charging his stunned foe. The crowd roared as the two clashed in the sand.

...

Leagues away, Irenicus had retreated deep inside his own mind. There were no words, no readily interpretable thoughts - there were only images and emotion. Irenicus' face contorted as, far away, he caught a glimpse of Fudge Dredd's forces. Legions of peons, advancing on his territory. Far to the back of their ranks, hauled by combat engineers, was the Hellfire Ballista.

A field marshall at the head of the army stopped and pointed. Storm clouds. Flashes of lightning. Dark magic is afoot. Push on in the name of Fudge Dredd! To victory and spoils!

"You will have nothing but ashes."

...

Haagenti and Barbatos had both flown into their own private frenzies. Haagenti slashed and hacked with his axe as he was alternatively parried and dodged by the smaller Barbatos. Haagenti's fist momentarily collided with his opponent's face, sending him reeling. Through the haze of red, Haagenti was vaguely aware of sensation in his hand. He continued to charge anyway, failing to even notice as the cuts began stacking up on his body - as his arms and torso became a lattice of lacerations.

...

They burned. All of them. The clouds had gathered, hellfire and lightning struck without warning or hesitation. Soldiers fled or hid as their commanders screamed at them to hold their ground - seconds before being struck down themselves. Demons were roasted alive in their armor. The Hellfire Ballista - abandoned and unguarded - steamed and hissed as it conducted the intense heat through itself, finally culminating in a shudder as the bolts popped out of their resting places and the great machine was undone. Unthinking brutality destroyed by a higher intelligence.

Leagues away, Irenicus' face contorted as he sought out his enemies. Again and again he struck, melting flesh from bone before turning bone to dust.

Screams echoed throughout the Infernal Plains - before falling into complete silence.

...

Barbatos lashed out with his full fury. Knocking aside Haagenti's axe with a tremendous blow, he dug his foot long bladed elbow into the great beast's stomach. A hush fell over the audience as Haagenti looked down and saw his smaller opponent entrenched in his guts. Haagenti snorted, barely audible. Barbatos twisted as far as he was able, digging into the wound. Ponderously, Haagenti reached down, wrapping his massive fingers around Barbato's blade. With a wrench, he snapped it, leaving the blade embedded in his stomach. Barbatos screamed in pain and fell backwards as Haagenti descended upon him. Ignoring the wound, Haagenti proceeded to beat Barbatos to death was his bare hands. Pinning his spiked form with his unprotected knees, Haagenti rained blow after blow upon Barbatos' face, rendering both his hands and his opponent's visage utterly unrecognizable.

Finally Barbatos lay still. Haagenti was barely aware of the crowd's screams. Cradling his stomach wound, he stood. He then violently ripped out the blade and pinned Barbatos to the floor with it, leaving his corpse nailed to the center of the Arena. Spitting a massive gob of blood on to the sand, Haagenti began the long journey back home.

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...

Far away, within Irenicus' Stronghold, a simple ritual had been completed. Irenicus rose from his kneeling position - close to spent, but not quite. It was only when he began the incantations again and once more envisioned the Infernal Plains upon which his opponents marched that he realized what destruction he had wrought.

There was only stillness on the scorched plains. They had been annihilated to the last man.

...

Victory.

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Image

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Now they may truly realize the full scope of my abilities. Such is my strength that just one of my rituals can reduce their armies to cinders.

Haagenti's performance was likewise impressive.

There is little to be said. Just as my conflict with The Understairs Man became an unmitigated disaster, so has this been a complete success. Sythiese has been humiliated. Fudge Dredd...has been undone.

Is this all you can conjure up, fools? Is Understairs Man to be the sole opposition on my path to the Throne of Hell?

Interestingly, the above statement appears even more correct given recent events.

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Temeluchas...undone by Abraxas? Interesting. It seems that Haagenti is not uncontested in the Arena. Larence can expect to hear from me very soon.

A twist of the knife in each of their wounds.

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There. Larence and Sythiese shall receive no mercy from me. Until they should find some way to stop me, I will hound them until the end of days. Their suffering shall only strengthen me.

As for Fudge Dredd...he lies broken. He bought an additional legion from the bazaar. I cannot recall their names. Weak, though. Undeniably weak. The Vendetta continues though he has no real troops left to wage it with.

This is it. This is where it begins. I shall eclipse my foes and take the Throne which is rightfully mine. These peons are only the first to fall.

By the time I am done with this contest, no one will dare to recall my failures.
"Shepard." -Wrex

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Now I Have a Peon

Post by The Bad Shepherd » Fri Oct 14, 2011 2:42 pm

Hohoho.

"This is Fudge Dredd speaking.


So, you bombed my personal bodyguard to ashes. Which leaves me with absolutely no power to satisfy my Vendetta against you, and leaves me powerless diplomatically. I knew I should've sent this before to save my loyals AND the Hellfire Ballista, but it's a tad late now, isn't it?


I propose this - I shall offer my loyalty in blood vassallage. We've had our disagreements, which will never be easily forgotten, but I know that I will not have power to turn the tide of battle for throne now. I've been diplomatically an outcast for too long part, and now I don't have any military power to speak of.


So, what say you, you bastard?"
"Shepard." -Wrex

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