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Official MW Lore: Battle Lines, Part 5 (Conclusion)


Part 4 recap: Unphased by the potential scholarship of the star map, Domatra races ahead and touches the Orb – which the couple now realize is not a V’Tar Orb but some sort of teleportation artifact. The celestial map fades away, and the Drakkonian power of the Nexus Orb teleports the couple to a cross-shaped chamber with large vaulted ceilings and a collection of ancient tomes and scrolls – the lair of a ancient Drakkonian Archmage. The lair is filled with silver Orbs that Bellarax and Domatra now instinctively know to be V’Tar Orbs; even more impressive is the V’Torrak that is here, able to open a direct portal to Voltari. The two mages stare at the wealth of treasure and power before them – and they know that their destinies – and the destinies of the nations of Etheria – hinge on who obtains the Drakkonian magic first.

BATTLE LINES: Part 5 (Conclusion)

Bellarax was a seasoned fighter but after many years of Academy life, he knew he was less likely to win in a straight out fight to the death. Domatra had lived in Ivarium all her life, save for the few short years they had been in Sortilege together, and she was often on the move with the Imperial Legions. Add to that her natural prowess as a Forcemaster -- well, Akiro might play those odds, but he would not.

Domatra would try to cut him down, to end their match swiftly, he was sure. But he meant to stay alive -- and to do that, he would have to use more than a little guile. From his study and translation of the stone tablet, he suspected that a daring mage could harness the power of the Orbs themselves during combat, bringing a new synergy to battle that just might turn the tide in his favor.

Still she would not be able to resist gaining control of at least one Orb first -- her curiosity would get the better of her. Plus, he knew that her Force spells would have little effect on these creatures. That could give him a slight advantage -- her ability to control the landscape around her was legendary.

He was gratified to find he was right. Domatra had moved closer to the first Orb, awakening the Guardian. Unlike her previous experience however, she knew what was coming, and deflected its attack on her forcefield as she moved in close to take the creature out with her forceblade.

Rather than running for another Orb, Bellarax rushed toward Domatra's battle, summoning a suit of of Harshforge Plate, along the way. Then, as soon as he was in range, he cast a tanglevine on Domatra, watching the vines wrap themselves around her legs, holding her fast.

The Guardian sliced down again, but once again Domatra's forcefield was able to deflect the blow. She flicked a withering glance at Bellarax, then teleported out of the tanglevine, right behind him. "Surely you remember this move." The forceblade arced out, across his face.

Except that it didn't. Bellarax revealed the Reverse Attack spell he had cloaked upon him, and the attack reverberated back at Domatra, sufficient enough to bring down her forcefield. In the wave of that blow, he summoned an Iron Golem, and positioning himself to strike her with his own blade.

"Enough!" The air around him rippled with force, and he watched as Domatra push herself backward a pace, giving her space to maneuver.

"’No success is enough, until there is victory’," said Bellarax, as he summoned his Helm of Command, and bound a Charge spell to it. He directed the spell at his creature, bringing his Iron Golem rushing back in, swinging at the Forcemaster.

He savored his latest quotation from the Arts of Lord Bellicar for all of a split second, before Domatra's Force Hammer spell slammed into his cranium, temporarily making him see white. Shaking it off as best he could, he sent the golem off to attack the Guardian, while he moved on to the next Orb.

Domatra accessed the situation, taking a quick look at the Guardian. The creature was hurting already, and with an iron golem in the mix, he surely wouldn’t last long. She lunged forward, closing range again with the guardian and the golem, but this time, targeting the Guardian with her forceblade, bringing the creature to the ground.

Bellarax saw his opening and took it. He cast Whirling Strike on his golem, which attacked Domatra first, then took control of the Orb with his additional attack. Bellarax could feel a strange new power flowing through him, healing him, and energizing his very senses.

Denied the first Orb, Domatra reassessed the situation. She knew Bellarax was a worthy adversary, but she suspected he would be no match for her up close, at least not without some serious support. Still, an iron golem and a V'Tar Orb… that might change the equation a bit. For the first time, she realized this was not the arena -- that a victory here might mean actual death for her colleague. But now that the die had been cast..., there could be only one outcome.

She whirled backward and danced away from the iron golem, and cast an unexpected Pillar of Light, damaging the golem, and momentarily blinding Bellarax, just enough for her to roll low and come up swinging against the Sistarran professor. Despite the Harshforge armor, her blade found its mark, and blood popped as it sizzled along its blue force edges.

Despite his tactics, Bellarax was in trouble. Domatra's attacks and force spells had done him serious harm. He caught his breath, gripped his sword a little more tightly and searched for a way to turn the tables, once and for all.

"You must end this!"

The voice did not come from Domatra. He assumed a guard position and quickly scanned the chamber, noting Domatra was doing the same. He looked over at her, the question plain on his face. "This is not some Mind spell trick of mine," she said, taking the opportunity to catch her breath.

"Then who..."

 Runed lines of a portal lit the air before them, opening a silvery blue archway. From it, two figures stepped through, both tall and lanky. Their cloaks and hoods were deep emerald green, with red velvet trim and golden filigree. Each carried a long staff of aged Wychwood, carved in the likeness of a serpent, body and tail entwined down the length of the shaft. They pulled back their hoods to reveal smooth Elven features, but their faces were longer, their eyes larger and deeper set. Though Elvish, they were not High Elf or Wood Elf.
 "And you are?..." Domatra demanded.

"We are mages of the Scaled Order," said the first of the Elves. "The Drakkons -- or Dragons as many call them in this day and age -- made Guardians to protect their Orbs and the V'Torrak. But to watch over their Legacy, they entrusted Us."

He continued. "You are scholars, you know the what will happen if the world is once more lit by fire and V'Tar. Leave this place, and leave the secrets of the past in peace."

"Interesting,” said Bellarax. “We are scholars, and yet we have never heard of you. Why should we believe you and your scaled order? As a scholar, I have to entertain the idea that perhaps you simply want all this for yourself. Leave this place? I'm sure you'll be right behind us, right?"

"How did you even get in here? Or find us?" added Domatra. "That's a pretty good trick of itself."

The first mage of the Scaled Order shrugged. "We have our ways, but suffice to say that when an Orb is touched, we know of it. We wouldn't be very good watchers if we didn't, would we?"

The second mage broke in, "Regardless, we're here now. Heed the last message of the Drakkons, the message they bid us deliver to whomever found their lairs, spellcraft and objects of power: ‘Know this -- the pure power of Voltari is not a thing meant for the consumption of the weak. It is an untamed tempest, and only through Domination can it be weathered. At the last, a moment will come in which that Domination will be undone, and the tempest will rage anew. This is no riddle, lest you miss our meaning -- we speak of V'Tar. We speak as sons of the Elemental Lords to the creations of the New Gods -- some things are best left alone."

The words rang through the chamber, and for the moment, Domatra and Bellarax were silent. But only for a moment.

"Best left alone? You simply want all the power for yourself!"

"You expect us to believe that? What scholar walks away from the secrets of the past? There's not a frost spell's chance in Infernia that's going to happen."

"I agree."

The first mage sighed. "I suspected as much. If you would awaken the V'Tar, then take control of them... if you can."

He raised his staff, and the ground of the chamber rippled, like stones tossed in a pond. In their wake the floor was left changed, with areas of deep pits, glowing lava, and quickly spreading ethereal mist.

The other mage murmured what sounded to Bellarax like Drakkonian, phrases of power that he had not seen or heard in his studies. In a second, many of the Guardians near the orbs had shifted form, becoming larger, broader, and covered in heavier spiked chitin.

"This is the Grand Arena," said the first mage. "If you wish to defy Drakkonians wishes, then stay alive." The two mage leveled their staves at Domatra and Bellarax, and readied their spells.

Domination of Etheria had begun.

Hope you guys enjoyed this Battlegrounds themed lore. Cheers!  -- Sabrath

Sailor Vulcan:
That was awesome! Btw, I suspect that a lot of people could do a better job of leveraging the forcemaster's natural playstyle. People say that forcemaster isn't very good at domination because she doesn't have enough creature actions. But she doesn't need to increase her actions that much, just *decrease* the opponents' actions! Forcemasters are exceptionally good at reducing enemy action advantage, and anything that's psychic immune and too big to destroy quickly they can have a force crush on until they're ready to deal with it. Meanwhile she can be up in the enemy's face attacking in order to keep them occupied while her one or two creatures (or more with mind control) do other things, like taking orbs.

Clearly Domatra was caught off guard. It takes three attacks from the invisible stalker on average to pay itself back, and it takes three arcane zaps on averaged to kill the stalker. Have her put out a invisible stalker and maybe a thoughtspore, and suppression orb and and a forcefield and start destroying any creatures she can't mind control, sleep or charm. Have her use wall of force to block movement and los of mages or spawnpoints, since they can't be climbed over.

Ultimately she should be able to make it difficult for enemies to gain and/or keep control of orbs in the first place because they don't have enough actions to do it once the forcemaster has done her thing.

I would love to see Domatra win by domination victory without killing Bellarax! It would only serve to fuel their rivalry and make them try even harder to outdo each other in the future. Of course there are still the other two mages to worry about, and they are clearly going for an aggressive kill the Mage strategy.  Maybe Domatra will send mind controlled creatures to assist Bellerax in defending them from the other mages while her stalker and a thoughtspore with blur work on taking some of the orbs right out from under Bellerax's nose! By the time the other two mages are defeated or too weakened to stop Bellerax and Domatra from getting the orb, Domatra has a lot more life after damage and magic left, has control of one or two orbs and has more creature actions left under her control. Maybe she kills Bellerax's remaining psychic immune creatures and charms the rest, pushes Bellerax into a corner and walls him off with walls of force, then guards against the charmed enemy creatures until she wins.

I think that Lore should be presented on front page of the Web, not in the forums. I completly missed part 5 to be out! :)


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