The Winning Entry:The Golden AgeWritten By: Lord UrzaShard and Location: Legends, Fair Grounds Congratulations to Lord Urza from the Legends shard on a truly outstanding tale. We would like to thank the Ultima Online team for their help with the prize, Mesanna for approving the contest, our readers for so many excellent entries and our judges for undertaking the difficult task of choosing the winner from amongst them. This is book two of the three part series. Look out for the final contest at the end of this year!!! Will you be the one to end the Trilogy? Is this truly the end??? You will find out soon!!! Many years passed in the land of Britannia, and for Mesanna they were a joyous, wonderful time. She and Peggie traveled the lands of Sosaria visiting many of the major cities of Britannia, exploring the splendors of the lost lands, and Tokuno islands. Even traveling to the elven city located high above Britannia in the canopy of the Heartwood tree. But During all these travels Mesanna never dared to venture near the Twin Oaks tavern for fear that Berholdt (the man who had once owned her and forced her to work there in that tavern) would have her dragged kicking and screaming back to that place. This however never happened, and many years later Mesanna would hear tell of Berholdts passing, while she was employing the talents she had attained in the Twin Oaks tavern, working for pay this time at a small tavern in Buc's Den. Here is where she met Rel Tak a master of Margery, and old man whom to most must have appeared as nothing more than a drunkard. Mesanna would walk the shore to the old man’s home, a small hut where he taught her the basics of Margery. She learned to cast the fields of poison, and fire. She learned to summon animals and monsters alike, and control them, to harness the powers of earth, wind fire, water, and air. Even the ability to recall far distances away, transporting her to them using rune stones which she would mark with the essence of the location. As proficient as Mesanna was able to become in the arts of Margery she struggled with the complexities of the gate spell, several times she was successful in opening a gate, but unable to sustain it long enough to make her way through it. As always happens this period of Mesanna's life drew to an end also, the tavern she worked at was raided by guild of lawless individuals, Mesanna with Peggie in tow made their way away from Buc's Den and with the money earned and saved from her time at the tavern Mesanna was able to purchase a small home in the City of Magincia. It even had a small stable blessed with dry straw for Peggie to bed down in at the end of their day. Mesanna grew a garden here, and made her way putting to good use the spells that she had learned from Rel Tak. Mesanna's abilities to control her spells grew more and more powerful as the years passed. One day there was trouble in Magincia, and the mayor summoned Mesanna, who promptly met him, and several other mages at the city moongate. It had become tainted with dark energies turning it an eerie shade of black. Mesanna, and the other mages discussed the change in the moon gates state reaching a consensus that It must be the doings of a powerful sorcerer. Mesanna hurried home to gather some components for a spell she hoped would determine the origins of the influence of the moongate. Mesanna had made it most of the way home when the smoke began to billow into the sky, before she realized what was going on building were in flames around here. The corner of a building exploded in some large explosion of energy Mesanna had never seen before. Some brave men and woman drew their weapons, and began trying to repel the attackers, the sounds of battle filled the streets, competing for ground against the roar of the flames now everywhere. There were screams as people died in agony, burning to death in their homes, or being torn apart by demons in the street, and Mesanna now seen them, having rounded a corner. Two of the creatures one with a red hide, the other with sickeningly pale white skin. Each grasping opposite ends of a woman appeared to be playing a twisted form of a tug of war with the poor woman. Where the Red Demons a Chaos Demon grasped the woman her skin blistered and bubbled, and where the white creature a Void Demon if Mesanna was correct clutched her leg, and thigh the skin appeared to be very slowly turning to liquid and dripping away from the muscle and bone. Reaching her home, Mesanna hurried to Peggie finding the goat quietly hiding in its stable. Mesanna took hold of Peggie's leash and began leading the goat out of town. As they rounded a corner in haste Mesanna slammed against something hard knocking her back onto the ground against Peggie, her vision blacking out momentarily. Laying there dazed and confused Mesanna blinked away the spots in her vision in time to see a void demon reaching out for her. Reflexively Mesanna spoke several words of power, her words forming a magical barrier between she and Peggie, and the void demon that recoiled as the magic field arched lighting onto his extended arm. Scrambling, Peggie already pulling the leash taught hauled her to her feet. The barrier bought them just enough time to flee down any ally together, only to find a demon at the other ended blocking their path. As she spun back the direction they had come Mesanna felt her heart drop, the void demon was now blocking there only other exit. Its face and hands dripping with blood, and disgustingly thick saliva the demons began to close on her. Peggie nudge her leg, and she looked down at her beloved friend, eyes filling with tears. Peggie looked back up at her, and gave a short worried "bah". Mesanna fell to her knees, throwing her arms around Peggie's neck. "I know Peggie, I'm scared too" The demons closing on them each seeming to glow with its own power drawing magical energy into themselves preparing for one of their very powerful attacks, that had so utterly destroyed the city. Suddenly without realizing that she had even begun to cast a spell Mesanna felt the gate open around her. She and Peggie were swept up and way deposited on a cobble stone street in the city of Britannia still embraced. Mesana never again struggled casting the gate spell. As if waking from a dream Mesanna tossed her head rousing herself from the reflection on those years passed. Now seated in front of the stage at the Legends fairground south of Luna anxiously watching as judges looked over Peggie and a host of the most impressive goats from all the corners of Sosaria, giving the goats a series of puzzles to test their intelligence, examining the goats coat, and muscle tone as well. Despite having lived a long life by goat standards. Having traveled so much of the kingdom, and survived so many perils it surprised none who had ever met Mesanna, and Peggie that the goat would go on to win Malas first ever "Most Impressive Goat" contest. However Mesanna was surprised when a distinguished man with a floppy wizard hat approached her in her seat handing her an elegantly scribed piece of parchment. Mesanna lifted the note reading it softly out loud. "Greetings Mesanna, you are summoned by Britannia’s Council of Mage's"