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My CDC2 minifigs are nearly ready and my ancient wonder build is starting to resemble to what I have in mind. So here is a sneaky episode to link the Chronicles of Embervale prologue and the CDC! Like the prologue, it's also available on my blog. ---------------------------- The builds Embervale Summer Fair - Elgwi's Curiosities Embervale Summer Fair - Ivo the Baker ---------------------------- The story - Chronicles of Embervale Episode 1 : the Summer Fair “Can I have a pony?” “No, Grog, it’s not lunchtime yet,” Evrart replied absently. “Not a pony for eating, sir! A pony for riding. Like the Boss’ white horse but smaller and less freaky? Please?” Alrune turned her head to glance at the goblin with tender amusement, and Evrart had to hastily pull her aside to avoid a collision with a pot-bellied dwarf carrying a barrel. She awkwardly thanked him while struggling to regain her balance – and her dignity. The natural grace of elf maidens, what a hoax! It was the third day of the summer fair in Embervale, and a colourful and boisterous mob had stormed the otherwise quiet village. Trying to work her way through the erratic crowd, Alrune was feeling like a cockleshell trying to navigate through a sea of freighters. She was contemplating the idea of casting a shockwave spell to clear a way when, much to her relief, they soon reached calmer waters and their destination. Nestled in a cosy nook behind the inn, it was a huge stall kept by a tiny halfling. The stall was full of strange minerals, colourful vials and odd trinkets, everything thoughtfully displayed and impeccably polished. It certainly was the most dapper spellcraft shop Evrart had ever seen – even the stuffed crocodile hanging from the ceiling looked fresh as a fiddle. “Hi there, your Ladyship!” the halfling cheerfully shouted when they reached the stall. “Geez, what a gloomy face you make!” “Good morning Elgwi. The crowd is horrific today,” Alrune replied with a sigh. “You may hate it, but it’s good for business, your Grace! Anyways, I have everything you requested. Just wait a moment, I’ll be right back.” The halfling vanished into the depths of the stall, and she soon reappeared with a bag and a heavy-looking grimoire. Alrune’s face brightened. "There you are,” she whispered, lovingly leafing through the pages of the book. “Hundreds of illustrations drawn in the author’s hand, reviewed and annotated by Archimage Willibert himself,” Elgwi said with a little self-satisfied smile. The two girls went on cooing over the book for a while, and a small but full purse changed ownership. A few moments later, as Evrart was holding the bag and ready to escort Alrune back to the castle, Elgwi handed her a thick envelope. The elf frowned at the mere sight of the blood red wax seal that closed it. “I almost forgot,” the halfling said. “That’s a message from your mother.” “Seriously. She has dozens of servile minions, and everyone at the court considers her wish as their command. Yet she uses you as a messenger.” “She did not give any explanation, your Highness. She just said it’s private and personal, and she’d rip my eyes out to feed them to her crow if I don’t convince you to read it – and do what’s written.” Elgwi had spoken lightheartedly, but Evrart realised that Alrune was taking the threat very seriously. “Fine, I’ll read it,” she hissed. On their way back to the castle, no one dared to shove her. She was so obviously seething that everyone moved out of her way. To be continued...
Aurore posted a topic in Guilds of HistoricaThis is what happens when a storyline I've had in mind for ages for a webcomic collides with my heartfelt reunion with my LEGO bricks and this year's Summer Joust "Creating an atmosphere" category... ---------------------------- The build : A castle, somewhere in the Enchanted Forest of Avalonia... ---------------------------- The story : Chronicles of Embervale - Prologue* *Also online on my brand new blog Once upon a time, in a land far, far away, lived an elf maiden. She was fair and wise, with eyes bright as jade and hair dark as shadow. Alas! The Elf Maiden’s heart was shrouded in sadness, for she lived alone in a secluded tower. “Wait, what? I’m not sad, and I’m definitely not alone. I have three cats, a company of goblins, and…and you!” “Right.” With the hint of a smile, he wrote: Her days were only lit up by the gentle presence of her caring uncle. Alrune sighed and turned to the window. “You know, Uncle, when I asked you to write our chronicles, I was thinking of something less lyric. Just a straightforward record of what happens in Embervale, actually.” “Well, sweetheart, nothing ever happens in Embervale. I mean, we do have the occasional invasion of dire rats. Worgs in the forests. Dragon attacks. And way too many surprise visits from your mother. But nothing really interesting!” Alrune smiled, absently watching the sunrays flickering in the rustling leaves in the courtyard below. She had willingly left the royal court to carry on her research in peace and tranquillity, and her uncle Dresghar had been ordered to go with her. Much to his dismay. She knew he missed the court’s thrilling and refined lifestyle. She also knew the poet in him enjoyed the beauty of the mountains around Embervale, the quaint charm of the castle, and the simplicity of village life. Soon, for sure, he’d love this place as much as she did. --- “There are people requesting a hearing, Boss!” the goblin guard hollered from the entrance of the hall. “From the village!” The goblin gestured for the visitors to enter. A pack of peasants hesitantly moved forward, impressed by the grandeur of the hall and its dignified architecture. Though small and provincial, Embervale Castle radiated a solemn atmosphere even the unseemly attitude of the guard could not tarnish. “Good morning. What would you like to talk about?” Alrune asked after an awkward moment of silence. “There’s a monster in the forest, my lady! We lost two lambs and several hens.” “Sheep and chicken? Are you sure this is not a mere worg? Or even just a big fox?” Wringing their hands, clearing their throats, the villagers did not reply immediately. And then they all began to talk at the same time. “It screams at night, my lady. Bloodcurdling cries. Worgs are decent creatures, they do not screech like that!” “My brother Ivo, he saw a beast, my lady! Green, as big as a horse! With horns and a shell like a tortoise!” “It breathes fire!” Moments later, if the words of the villagers were to be believed, it appeared that Embervale was threatened by a six-legged armoured monster with the head of an eagle and the tail of a dragon, taller than a house and faster than a hare, able to breath fire and spit venom. “I see. Probably something mightier than a fox, then. Horns and a carapace – a tarasque, perhaps?” Alrune speculated. “Go back home and stay safe behind the village walls, we’ll deal with it.” “So, sweetie, how exactly are we going to deal with that dubious monster?” Dresghar asked as soon as the villagers left. Alrune avoided his gaze and remained silent, more concerned than she let on. --- “Someone else, Boss!” the guard yelled again. “The guy who works for the neighbour!” The goblin let the man in, a weary soldier with a stern face who gracelessly bowed to the Elf Maiden. He was no stranger in Embervale, as he had already delivered numerous messages from his quarrelsome master. “Good morning, Evrart. What’s the matter this time?” Alrune asked before he even uttered a word. “Does a tree from my forests cast an outrageous shadow on your baron’s crops again?” “Most likely, my lady. The old baron is…was a stickler for proper ground maintenance. But this is not my reason for coming.” He paused, obviously searching for words. “He happened to die a few days ago. The old baron.” “Good to know! … Huh, sorry – I mean, sorry for your loss.” Despite his lack of manners, the human did have the grace to go on as if the Elf Maiden had not foolishly cut him off. He was speaking in a low tone, his voice bitter as if his own words hurt him deeply. “The young baron said he needed new blood. Dismissed us all who served his father. So I end up on my own, and I was wondering if you were hiring.” A silence fell, somewhat altered by the squealing of Dresghar’s quill on the parchment as he decorated an initial. “Well, actually, I have a problem with a tarasque…” “A tarasque, my lady?” “Or maybe a very weird fox. Whatever it is, it instils fear in the village. Investigate, find out what’s happening, and I’ll try to find you a place here.” --- A few days passed, and the human came back. By his side were the two guards of Embervale the Elf Maiden had sent to escort him, as well as a small, armoured creature with tiny horns. “And who’s that cutie?” Dresghar cooed, putting the Chronicles aside to kneel and pat the creature on the head. “It’s a tarasque cub, sir. We found the remains of its mother in the marshlands,” Evrart replied. “It’s rather friendly, actually. It bites only when it’s scared.” “It followed us home, Boss, can we keep it?” one of the goblins asked, coyly glancing at Alrune. “Please, Boss?” the other one added with what he intended as a charming smile. The Elf Maiden was gentle in heart – the kind of person who genuinely cared for stray kittens and fledglings fallen from the nest. Hence, at the end of the day, Embervale had welcomed two new denizens: a lovely little critter, and some ordinary human.