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[EM Event Fiction] An Earthen Stone

Discussion in 'Imperium News Service' started by Merik, Apr 5, 2011.

  1. Merik

    Merik Guest

    By Elder EM Dudley

    Kendrick Morrow could feel the sweat bead down his neck. He put a canteen to his lips savoring what little water was left within the container. He looked up and squinted in the overbearing sun. Thought Kendrick had lost track of time, his task remained clear. As he trudged on in the shifting sands he reflected on recent events that had helped shaped his current situation. He thought of his situation as somewhat serendipitous. While the meddling royal guard had disrupted his ruse of identity, he at last had taken an opportunity to injure one of their own. Kendrick knew better than to allow himself to slip to far into the comfort a minor victory. He focused once more and continued his journey.

    After what seemed like hours, Kendrick, through the oppressive waves of heat could see the relief of green vegetation. He pushed forward to be rewarded by the site of his destination. He fell to his knees at the bank of the small pond. Kendrick cupped his hands and splashed the water over his head. The relief was overwhelming and granted a welcome burst of refreshment. After filling his canteen Kendrick unfurled an aged cartograph, and surveyed the landscape. With a spade on his shoulder he paced out a path, this, he was certain, was the spot. Hours passed in the quiet oasis, the only interruption to the stillness came in the chirp of the occasional songbird and the rhythmic slice of Kendrick's spade against dirt. Finally the tink of the spade was replaced with the dull thud of wood. A grin immediately crossed Kendrick's face. He brushed off the remaining soil covering the coffin and slipped the spade underneath the lid. Kendrick thrust down on the handle opening it to the sound of cracking timber. The shimmer of a small stone immediately caught Kendrick's eye. Kendrick knelt down and popped the gem from the fragile bones. He held it up in the setting sun and the sky seemed to darken. The gem glowed some and Kendrick smirked once more. He tucked it away and uttered a familiar incantation.

    Distanced now from the sizzling sands of the desert Kendrick found himself bustling about his makeshift laboratory. Before him stood an apparatus resembling what some could describe as a mortar and pestle but lacking any detailed description. Kendrick shuffled the assembly of diagrams and schematics that lay on the table. Satisfied the apparatus was assembled correctly he set the stone atop the three prongs of the receiver and began to manipulate the complex series of wheels and levers. Kendrick watched as the stone started to rotate. With each rotation the stone sank lower into the receiver until finally it was gone. The contraption whirred and spun, following a high pitched series of whistles the product finally emerged as a thick black liquid dripping from a small gilded spout. Kendrick picked up a now full flask and examined the liquid. He watched as flashes of deep crimson danced amongst the translucent contents. He secured the vial and gathered all his notes. As he closed the door of the laboratory his eyes met a large keg he'd rolled into the center of the small room. He closed the heavy wooden door with a thud.

    Day had turned to night and the air was cool. He mounted a waiting ostard and began to ride across the nearby ridge. Before long, he could see the entire valley and his small cottage nestled amongst the woods. Kendrick watched as the night sky was suddenly filled with a blinding flash then moments later a thunderous boom. From this distance only the burning remains of his laboratory could be seen. Kendrick turned his attention to the small vial securely stowed in his pocket. He dismounted and knelt close to the dampened soil and uncorked the bottle. He inverted the flask and watched as the shadowy liquid inside danced and pattered against the cracked earth. It was quickly swallowed by the forest floor and as the last drop slipped below the surface a dark energy pulsated throughout the forest. His attention turned back to the ostard whose behavior was wrought with fright. Kendrick struggled to rein in the frightened mount, turning it to head off into the woods...