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Author Topic: Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings) [library]  (Read 2193 times)

Offline Fafnir

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Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings) [library]
« on: April 13, 2004, 12:34:21 PM »
http://www.warhammer-empire.com/library/tales/darkelf.php

I wrote this to depict my loss against the Dark Elves in the Albion campain but I'm thinking about expanding it as I often fight druchii. What do you think?



To Nagronath

Helmer concentrated on putting one mangled foot before the other in a futile display of defiance. Not that it mattered, his captors cared little whether he lived or died, his tumbling down the cliff-face would only serve to arouse their twisted sense of humour. His one good eye locked on the scarred back before him, the hunched form of Ritter Gottwald bereft of all his former glory. The druchii made even the most noble of men into a wretched creature that flinched from every sound, kissing the dirt before his master, Helmer thought with disgust. Not that he had reason to complain, fortune had favoured him and he still regained much of both his sanity and his health. Others were not so fortunate. Most were not even alive anymore, if you could call this existence a life.

The white cliffs of Albion pummelled into the ocean, the rain that had bothered them ever since setting foot on this island somewhat diminished by the midday sun. What was left of the Feltmeister Battalion slowly made their way down the narrow path that cut across the cliff-face, black-clad slavers driving them onwards. Some retained tattered remains of their black and yellow uniforms, though most wore only rags by now. Five months in slavery in the Dark Elf colony of Nagronath had left its mark upon them, military discipline and pride long since eroded by pain, humiliation and death. Though some things had begun to slip from his tortured mind, Helmer remembered well the day they got captured. Ever since old Baron von Nebelhorn had been cut down by the druchii lord, the imperial line had wavered. The fog cut the battalion, in which Helmer served proudly as a halberdier, off from the retreating army and the vultures had descended on them at once. A third was cut down where they stood, and those were the lucky ones, Helmer laughed silently to himself. A brief shriek of pain cut through the air as a druchii killed a straggler. Helmer ignored the sound as he had soon come to do.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2007, 03:42:27 PM by rufus sparkfire »
EDIT: see Africa for more examples ...

Offline Domoviye

  • Posts: 59
Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings)
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2004, 01:59:33 AM »
I like the story.
Good grammer, enough detail to make you feel for the character without going overboard, and it made me interested in how he will escape.
Write some more please.
I never touch reality myself you understand, I find it gets in the way of the hallucinations.
Joker in "The Killing Joke"

Offline rufus sparkfire

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Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings)
« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2004, 10:55:56 AM »
I like it; it's nicely written and has the kind of dark fantasy style I enjoy. However it loses marks for being too short! Is this just a part of a larger story? If it is intended as a short story, I think you need to extend it a little and come to a more satisfying conclusion - at the moment it feels unfulfilled.

In any case, please write more when you can.
Hey, I could still beat up a woman!
If I wanted to.

Offline BAWTRM

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Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings)
« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2004, 11:29:08 AM »
Very,very nice!

You've got a good style of writing, I'd like to read more work coming from your hand.
"...granted it isn't as retarded as having a lady popping out of your head holding a cup while humping a boar with a sword through its back, but there can only be one Brettonia."

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Offline Fafnir

  • Posts: 1767
Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings)
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2004, 07:47:04 PM »
Actually, it's just intended to represent the feeling I got after a serious of humiliating losses where my previous general met his demise.
EDIT: see Africa for more examples ...

Offline Fafnir

  • Posts: 1767
Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings)
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2004, 11:23:57 PM »
OK, here's the whole short story as I envisioned it.



To Nagronath

***

Helmer concentrated on putting one mangled foot before the other in a futile display of defiance. Not that it mattered, his captors cared little whether he lived or died, his tumbling down the cliff-face would only serve to arouse their twisted sense of humour. His one good eye locked on the scarred back before him, the hunched form of Ritter Gottwald bereft of all his former glory. The druchii made even the most noble of men into a wretched creature that flinched from every sound, kissing the dirt before his master, Helmer thought with disgust. Not that he had reason to complain, fortune had favoured him and he still regained much of both his sanity and his health. Others were not so fortunate. Most were not even alive anymore, if you could call this existence a life.

The white cliffs of Albion pummelled into the ocean, the rain that had bothered them ever since setting foot on this island somewhat diminished by the weak midday sun. What was left of the Feltmeister Battalion slowly made their way down the narrow path that cut across the cliff-face, black-clad slavers driving them onwards. Some retained tattered remains of their black and yellow uniforms, though most wore only rags by now. Five months in slavery in the Dark Elf colony of Nagronath had left its mark upon them, military discipline and pride long since eroded by pain, humiliation and death. Though some things had begun to slip from his tortured mind, Helmer remembered well the day they got captured. Ever since old Baron von Nebelhorn had been cut down by the druchii lord, the imperial line had wavered. The fog cut the battalion, in which Helmer served proudly as a halberdier, off from the retreating army and the vultures had descended on them at once. A third was cut down where they stood, and those were the lucky ones, Helmer laughed silently to himself. A brief shriek of pain cut through the air as a druchii killed a straggler. Helmer ignored the sound as he had soon come to do.

***

A scrawny, filthy rodent scuttled across the dirt floor of the slave compound, its uneven walls carved by the very slaves that now occupied it. Even the rats were famished thought Helmer as he crouched, hunting for today’s meal. Tomorrow’s too he reminded himself, unless they were lucky. Luck was all that he had left, for indeed Helmer had been lucky. He had escaped the mud flooding that struck the lower levels, and he had survived the subsequent beatings the battalion had received. He offered praise to Sigmar as he sunk his teeth into moist rodent flesh, though he barely remembered why he did such a thing. Habit, Helmer said to himself. He had lost any real faith in the gods about the same time as he had lost track of time.

His battalion was no longer used for the more complicated work in the colony and Helmer supposed they were less like slaves now and more like prisoners. “Prisoners have their use too”, one of the slave-masters had said, though apart from shovelling dirt he had seen none.

A low bickering came from the other side of the poorly lit cell compound, where some of the others argued over what to do with Ritter Gottwald’s corpse. Most still retained an ounce of respect for the man. Helmer’s chains did not reach far enough for him to see, a fact for which Helmer praised himself lucky, for there was nothing wrong with the halberdiers’ intuition. Minutes later Helmer put his hands on his ears to bar out the familiar sound of starved mouths on raw, dead flesh.

***

The man struggled with the last two steps up the ridge, those around him equally exhausted by the steep climb. He had little concept of self, only two ideas swam through his disoriented head. One was the words all his captors had repeated for what seemed like an eternity before his trek begun; Blood for Khaine. The man did not know who this Khaine was. Perhaps it was him, for he had long since forgotten his own name. The other image in his head was that of a vast burning sun, though why he knew not; the sun here was never more than a bleak lantern in the cloudy sky.

The man continued along with the line, drawing closer and closer to the obsidian structure that, though dwarfed by the cliffs, still stood as the most imposing construct in the landscape. Though bereft of the depth perception of most men, he could still make out the small brook that ran from its top. It bubbled happily down the brown pebble of the ground and came to a halt in a crimson pool just above sea level.

Shouts came from his slavers and the man froze in a second, unable to comply with an order spoken in at tongue he did not know. He looked around as did those beside him, and a strange, long forgotten feeling struck his heart. Their captors were heading off in the opposite direction and the man knew hope. It had been long since they had worn chains and he lifted his legs with an unfamiliar strength, each stride longer and more powerful than the next. Soon the whole line had broken into a sprint towards the jagged cliffs, their shadows nurturing a growing hope of escape. Hope however, is the most dangerous of emotions, for as soon as the group neared the cliffs, bolts flew through the air. A person next to the man whose face seemed familiar fell to a black bolt. Then another, and another, yet the man continued to run. Adrenaline rushed through his pain-wrecked body and he flew across the craggy ground. He soared over the rocks, plunged down into the chasms, ran along the cliff side and jumped across the outcrops. The air burned in his lungs, though he could not remember feeling so alive. He fell, drew to a halt and looked around.

He was alone. No fellow prisoners, no slavers, no chains. He stood there for precious moments, perfectly quiet until once again he was gripped with fear. A noise echoed across the chasm and he looked up from his hiding place. A burning yellow sun gazed back at him, its bright features not in the sky but fluttering on a great pole far away. The man strained his eyes and looked onto the shore below. A warm feeling of hope caressed his heart as he looked upon men of his own kind, black and yellow uniforms only outshone by the glittering of thousands of weapons. He remembered and he was safe. Helmer von Liebknecht rose to his feet and ran, and fell, rose again and fell once more. Tears streamed from his scarred cheeks as he made his way far down the cliff face. Once again he stumbled. It took longer this time to stand up and as he tried a black, plated boot thundered down and broke the four remaining fingers on his left hand.

Helmer looked up and he begun to laugh. Tears rolled from his eyes and hysterical laughter echoed down the chasm even as druchii steel buried itself in the near-skeletal visage of his ribs.

***
EDIT: see Africa for more examples ...

Offline rufus sparkfire

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Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings)
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2004, 11:59:50 AM »
Fantastic!

Truly brilliant stuff!

(Further) Words fail me!

 :D
Hey, I could still beat up a woman!
If I wanted to.

Offline Heiglot

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Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings)
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2004, 01:14:52 PM »
I like it very much too. The only thing that was a bit confusing though was the end:

Quote
It took longer this time to stand up and as he tried a black, plated boot thundered down and broke the four remaining fingers on his left hand.


I just get confused by it.
The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

Offline Fafnir

  • Posts: 1767
Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings)
« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2004, 03:25:00 PM »
Oh, sorry, I haven't checked back here for a while. What's confusing about it?
EDIT: see Africa for more examples ...

Offline General Helstrom

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Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings)
« Reply #9 on: May 11, 2004, 03:24:08 PM »
I think there should be a comma after "as he tried".

Other than that, this is an excellent story!
I don't know what Caesar thought when he got to the Ides of March
Don't know what Houdini bought when he went to the store
But I sure do miss the eighties

Offline Heiglot

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Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings)
« Reply #10 on: May 11, 2004, 04:27:50 PM »
Yup, the missing comma makes it sound like: "as he tried a black......"

But as most people say other than that it's marvelous. :D
The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

Story: To Nagronath (humble beginnings)
« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2004, 01:41:13 PM »
Great story! although I  did expect him to be rescued by a high elf raid or somthing. ather than that,awsome :biggriin:
"There are no problems that can not be solved by Cannons........usually!"