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Thursday, October 6, 2011

Time Spiral - Chapter 24



Here it is. Radha vs Greht.


Time Spiral - Chapter 24

Radha and her warhost consisting of a few elves, a viashino, and ghitu warrior walk up the mountain of Shiv towards a prepared platform where Greht awaits. His entire warhost lined the path each carrying a torch to light the way. Three of Greht's commanders block their entrance and they attack after Radha's snide remark about the messengers she sent ahead of her. Radha, Dassene , and Skive make short work of them.

Greht boldly claims that he gets to see what an elven warhost looks like, loud enough to so all can hear. Radha tells her people to remember that they've all walked up the mountain, and when this is over, they will all descend as true Keldons. She then reminds them that they much act as Keldons during the battle. They must cheer for her when she strikes and much rage when she is struck.

The duel begins. Greht and Radha test and prod at each other. She's surprised that despite his bulk, it doesn't seem to hinder him at all when it comes to speed. He laughs when she summons her leaves of fire, and in response he drives his sword into the stone platform and fire erupts from the hole as he pulls it back out. It is clear he is more powerful both physically and magically.

It's a good thing she wasn't planning on attacking him head on like had in each of their previous encounters. The tip of her blade catches fire, and she whips her arm through the air fast enough to make the Keldon symbols she's writing in the air clear to all. He attacks once, and then again, each time charging directly through her flames. He purposefully charges through her flames to show everyone how pathetic the heat of her fire truly is.

She turns to her warhost and tells them to laugh. The symbol she's writing means "piss here." As Grecht continues to attack while she continues to only write her symbols of fire, Greht realizes her goal too late. The Keldon symbol has been burned into his iron mask and his 'host cheers for him no longer. The shame on his face has destroyed his link to his men.

Greht knows what he has to do. Despite the mask being bolted into his skull, Greht shows his true power and slowly rips the mask from his face. With the blood streaming down, his men approve, roaring louder than ever before.

Radha's plan has failed, so she'll just have to come up another. She charges the warlord and reaches into her belt. She pulls out one of Teferi's mana stars and combines its power to her own , drops to one knee and aims her blade at his face. A blast of fire hits him squarely in the face and launches him halfway across the platform.

Greht gets up and finds the corpse marker for "target" burned upon his face, the same marker used on the blind boy at the village before. Grecht loses all respect from his warhost a second time.

But Greht isn't just a Keldon. He is a Gathan. The product of Tolarian Academy manipulation. Greht draws every bit of mana from the mountain into himself. The skin upon his face flakes and burns, as does every bit of flesh, until a flaming skull is all that rests upon his shoulders.

The rush of power as his host returns to him once more provides one last opening. Radha draws every bit of mana from the mana star and gives it all to Greht. She commands her people to run, but knows she herself cannot escape the blast. In all her glee she shouts out to Teferi to watch her in her glory.


...Deep within the mountain...

In near complete darkness, Radha hears a voice. It tells her to rise as a Daughter of Keld. She much only speak the covenant and she become one with the mountain.

Radha took a breath and intoned, "Coal and tinder, fire and spark, Keldons are fire, and Keld commands... burn."

(More on this later.)

Rise, Radha, Warlord of Keld. Go forth and burn. Shine brightly through twilight and beyond.


...Safely away...

Radha wakes with Dassene by her side. They had taken her body with them immediately after the explosion and fought their way out. Even now more elves and settlers, and even Gathans, have come to her camp and ask to join her warhost.

She finds that even while unconscious she had commanded Llanach to go to the nearby village and retrieve the blind boy he'll find there, and she is pleased. She is going to train him so the mark upon his face will be one to be feared and not laughed at. Dassene wonders how she'll be able to accomplish that, and so Radha grabs her hand and lets the fires of Keld flow into her.

"Oh," she said with a hungry grin. "Skive will love this."

They would soon finish off the Gathans , and then the slivers, then the saprolings, and who knew what else. But first Radha needs rest, and she returns to sleep with a smile on her face.

* * *


The Covenant

That really is how the convenant ends? Keld commands burn? I'm not fond of that at all. It sounds so awkward to me, and makes the whole covenant less impressive than it could have been. Some examples:

Keld commands eat. Keld commands play. Keld commands burn.

Keldons are fire, and Keld commands that its people burn strong and bright and turn any obstacle into ash. I understand the sentiment, but the way it's written, it just sounds so odd to me. Let's pretend it sounds more appropriate in High Keldon and it's a translation issue.

But now what? Radha is done? It's great and all that she's accomplished her goal in life, but what does this do with the much larger problem of saving the multiverse? It this just set up for the future of Dominaria after the trilogy is over? That's a bit odd. But there's only one chapter left, so let's find out.


1 comment:

  1. Keld commands. Burn!
    Those are two separate sentences.

    ReplyDelete