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Sunday, August 21, 2011

Guildpact - Chapter 17

This is it! The final showdown!

Guildpact - Chapter 17

Fined - Zomaj Hauc, magelord, a sum total of five thousand zinos per day until safety codes are met on Power Project U-001012. Fine levied in absentia.
-Public notices, the Utvara Townsman
(31 Paujal 1012 Z.C.)

3 CIZARM 10012 Z.C.

Here he is, his last stop. Pivlic successfully distributed to the cure to everyone who still needed it with the exception of Garulsz's camp. He wasn't sure who she would take the news that he left Kos behind. It's no surprise that when she hears the news going to his rescue is her first thought. Pivlic tells her that retiring sounds like a better option for him, and she should come and share a drink of celebration.

When the both see a blue dragon emerge from the Cauldron and head towards the town, he reconsiders that plan. It's revised a final time when albino dragon chases after the first as well as a flight sphere.

A possible three way fight with not telling who's the winner? Who wants to place bets? Credit extended to any ogre that could make their mark.

...Atop Hauc's Blue...

That stupid baroness had stolen his other dragon! And it was just like the prissy Orzhov woman to not even pilot it herself. There was no helping it, the albino had to die. Hauc gave the order and his dragon was none too happy about it. It swore vengeance upon him should he ever break free of Hauc's spell.

Then bad news turns worse when the flight sphere rams into the Blue's head and Hauc realizes they've stolen that as well. He's going to miss it but there's no choice. He initiates the self-destruct.

...In the flight sphere...

Well that was no good. The controls weren't working anymore. And why's this pyromana tank acting funny?


Crix and Kos are rattled but still alive despite the explosion. Most of the force blew outward but they didn't get away free and clear:

His arms would not move. He looked down at his chest and saw a bent mizzium cylinder protruding from the tank housing, still blazing hot from the explosion. It had entered his right arm just below the elbow, passed clean through his abdomen between his ribs, and, he gathered from the oddly numb feeling in the left half of his body, punctured his spine along the way before pinning his open hand to the inner surface of the cockpit.

(Well that's not good.)

...Atop Teysa's Dragon...

It looks like Teysa picked the winner. Her dragon thought she was talking nonsense when Teysa asked if she could kill Hauc without harming the other dragon. It scoffs as the idea of coddling a he dragon. This was her territory was it not? He had to leave or die.

And die it probably would, perhaps without even any help on their part. A piece of invizomizzium seems to have pierced it's skull. The damage was severe enough that its reaction time was slowed that even Teysa could notice, but not too slow that it couldn't singe the albino's wing, which of course just angers the female dragon all the more.

...In the Flight Sphere...

The sphere is plummeting to the ground, but Crix takes the time to take the teardrop in Kos' belt like he said, pull the metal bar from his body, and heal him up. For a bit she's worried that he's dead, however he's well enough to complain about his heart so that was a good sign right? She jets out the escape hatch using the last of her reserve mana just a half second before the sphere crashes to the ground and all the remaining flame pods burst in a glorious explosion.

...Atop Teysa's Dragon...

The dragons trade blast after blast, and both begin to tire. This needs to ends soon, and Tesya commands her dragon to switch tactics and go at him with tooth and claw. It works. Teysa's dragon manages to snap its neck. The act doesn't stop Haucs forward momentum and he comes to a swift end as he crashes head first into a cliff, screaming the entire way.

The fight is over but Teysa can't seem to regain control of her dragon who is now in a blood frenzy and continues to savage the blue dragon. The dragon is oblivious of the fact that the ground is rushing up to meet them and a outcropping of the exceedingly rare mizzium conveniently pierces both dragons. They aren't impaled by random columns, beams, sharp points of collapsed structures, or any of the other hazards that make up the Husk. It's mizzium.

Teysa's fine and so is Golozar, and the dragon needs to die anyway so she doesn't feel too bad. She's glad as she watches the life fade away from its accusatory eye. Then the sky above Utvara bursts.

...At the sphere crash site...

Kos feels his heart pounding and Schism calling. It's so beautiful. Crix tells him not to look, but he doesn't pay her any mind.

The Schism glows brighter and then burst open, and she appears. Feather had finally returned.

For a moment, the driving drumbeat in his ear ceased, and he reveled in a short eternity of blissful silence as Feather drew closer and called back to him, her voice making no sound. Her angelic eyes were wide with horror, and she was saying something. He could make out the shape of the words. They were "Kos" and "no," in that order.

Before Feather finished the second word, Agrus Kos was dead.

* * *

Did I Just Read That!

Kos isn't supposed to die! He's supposed to live into the end of the trilogy!!  Retire from Pivlic's service, maybe join the Azorius Senate in some fashion, and come face to face and overcome his fear of Lupul!!

What just happened!!

Well that really changes how I thought the trilogy was going to turn out.

Let's Rewind a Bit

The air battle itself was great. It made sense that all they could do with the sphere was use it as a battering ram, it made sense that Hauc set the self-destruct, and it made sense that one act of theirs helped with defeating the dragon threat. The end of Hauc was quick but satisfying enough with him screaming in indignation as he flies headfirst into a wall.

What was way too abrupt was the death by stalagmite. And how did Teysa survive besides? (Side thought: Maybe she joins the Senate... or Golozar joins them as security and/or becomes a wojek with Feather's recommendation?)

Still... while it was abrupt, the ending was a vast improvement over how Book One ended.

Back to the Present

Agrus Kos is dead.

Let that soak in.

What Guilds are left? The Simic Combine, the Azorius Senate, and The Cult of Rakdos. None of those seem to be specialized with spirits or ghosts. Is this really the end of him? While I did end up liking Teysa better than Kos, is she the one that's going to make this trilogy feel whole? My one hope is the very out of place scene where Kos shows his irrational fear of Lupul. There must be a reason for that, and that reason seems to be that it was a seed planted for a final meeting between the two in the Third Book of the trilogy.

Perhaps the Epilogue will give a clue.

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