As Moyra Skylark journeyed back to the City of Heap with her trusted guards, she tried to think of what she would tell lady Sera.  Her meeting with the newest general of the Vargath army had been a great success, and the two warriors pledged to her cause would surely help in the coming struggles against the Fallen Kingdom.  Never before had she seen such skill commanding troops as the female Vargath warrior had shown - her formations disciplined and strong.  And the other... her feet still trembled from the force of energy emitting from him.  The Vargath would be fearsome allies indeed.

Still, she found her mind straying ever back to what had happened even before the meeting took place.  On the road, she was ambushed by undead.  She still didn't know how they found her, but they were more than a match for her small band hoping to remain hidden.  But they had been found.  If it had not been for him, she and her companions would be with the gods now, and she may have never laid her hands on the Summoning Stone.  But he had saved them.  Her mentor... the man she and many of the Vanguards had looked to for guidance, wisdom and faith, the great Father Benjamin had given his life so that she might complete her journey and retrieve the stone.  She could still see his face and hear his words.

"Go, Moyra.  You are ready to fulfill your purpose, as am I.  They cannot harm me.  Blind them and go."

She saw the finality in his eyes and knew what she had to do.

A flash of light shrouded everything around the legendary priest, and the undead could see only him.  Moyra watched in terror and reverence as he folded his hands and awaited his fate.  When he was gone, she obeyed his last wish and continued on.  Even now, she thought she could still hear his voice.

"Moyra.  Moyra, hear me now!  You are in danger!"

Moyra snapped out of her reverie.  She could've sworn that voice had spoken to her again, but the only others there were a familiar Elf, with a small band accompanying him, including one of his well-known warrior sentries.  There seemed to be something different about him, but Moyra approached to speak with Prince Elien.  Finally he had answered the call and come to join the fight against Ret-Talus.

"Moyra, that is not the Elf you've heard about.  He is changed.  He is evil."

The voice again - clearer this time.  It spoke directly within her mind.  She knew it, but, it couldn't be...

".... Father Benjamin...?"

"Yes, Moyra.  I am here.  I will always be here, as long as you possess the light."

"But how?"

"Someday I will teach you, but now is not the time.  This Elf is not who he once was.  He is still as deadly as ever, but his cowardice and sense of self-righteousness are gone.  Replaced by hatred and undeath.  It was he who attacked us before.  His minions failed, and he has come to destroy you."

Moyra had gotten close enough to see the rest of his traveling party, and she knew instantly that Benjamin was right.  She saw one of the cult followers that served the Rotten King, and another being that seemed to be made of pure energy that she'd never seen before.

"You have the presence of the divine within you, Moyra. Stand strong, and when the time is right, call me forth.  I will come."

"But how...."

"Just call for me.  Now strike!"

Moyra didn't need telling twice.  She ordered one of her front line defenders to setup formation and hold it.  Her mounted companion - one of Father Benjamin's crusaders - seemed to radiate with light as his horse reared, and the small angel danced quietly between the two.  It drew power from the crusader's shining aura and fired an arrow into the cult member - its hands now glowing green.  He shrugged it off even though it found its mark, however this angered the cultist, who charged the cherub in retaliation, followed by the elf warrior who began to chop at the summoning wall Moyra had erected. Moyra grimaced for just a second as the cultist struck down the little angel, even through her fortified formation.  The will of Elien was strong - this much Moyra could tell.  She cast the same spell she used when Father Benjamin had made his sacrifice, and suddenly undead and elves alike were blinded by the light surrounding Moyra.  She dispatched the hooded cultist, though the warrior was too deft for her defender even with his divine inspiration.  

Elien seized an opportunity.  Moyra had heard of his fondness for frying his own units to enhance his magic advantage, but not like this.  The warrior disintegrated before her, and her surrounding units were singed and left reeling.  A new cultist that Elien called forth and the green glowing being couldn't see through the light though, and her companions survived.  Seeing this and feeling the divinity within Moyra, another of her line guards charged forward and felt strength surge though him.  Moyra called forth another fleet-footed cherub, looked to the sky, and seemed to vanish.  In her place stood another of her line guards.... at least, that's what the enemy saw.  Her units struck down the glowing beast and drew cursed blood from the cult follower, and Moyra and her guards fortified her position.

At least, she thought.  Again, she watched grimly as Elien cast an unholy spell, and the bleeding cultist erupted into flames, completely engulfing the holy warrior and one of her guard.  

"No!"  Moyra stared into her stone and then into the sky.

As the holy warrior ducked away from the flames, a visage of Moyra appeared in front of him, and the flames instead engulfed it, leaving the crusader unharmed.  Burns appeared on Moyra's arms and legs, but she'd saved a life.  

As she refocused, Elien, furious that his spell had been deflected, came out from behind his summoning wall and fired a blast at her lone remaining guard.  Moyra - who still appeared as one of her guards - used their defensive tactics to deflect the blast... or so it seemed.  Elien's rage at having yet another of his attacks thwarted seemed to boil over, and it was as if his sheer will brought the fire back, and the guard burned right before her eyes.

 "This elf is fueled by rage and revenge, Moyra." said the disembodied voice of Benjamin in Moyra's head.  He is powerful enough that his hate-fueled will can influence himself and those around him.  You must defeat him quickly."

"Yes Father."  Moyra thought in response.  She summmoned another defender, and called to the cherub.  He glided over in front of her and seemed to glow in the light still surrounding the holy crusader, and fired an arrow at the immortal Elf summoner, which found its mark.  Even though Elien seems stronger now, his hatred at seeing his own blood has not left him.  In retaliation, he summoned another one of the glowing beasts, which burned the holy warrior to a pile of ash.  As if that wasn't bad enough, the pile of ashes began to stir, and another glowing beast emerged from the ashes and smited the guard.   Moyra thought it was trying to conjure something from the charred bones that were left, but nothing more came.  Elien himself then downed the angel with a fiery blast, and Moyra, for the moment, was alone.

"I will not allow you to take me as you took my mentor!" she yelled defiantly.  "Begone with these harbingers of death!" She summoned another small angel and another warrior from Benjamin's crusades.  Moyra smited one of the glowing beasts, and the cherub shot a light-infused arrow into the other.  Elien, who had exhausted much of his magic power to this point (Moyra's strategy was working - the Elf lacked the magical power to call forth his mighty Drake, or even his new cult leader), attempted to take revenge on the angel himself, but Moyra was ready.  Her visage again appeared before the angel and absorbed the blast, and Elien's green glowing eyes widened.

Moyra shook off the pain and pressed her advantage.  The crusader reached to the sky and light surrounded the three righteous warriors, and the angel fired another arrow into Elien, drawing more cursed blood.  Elien called forth another glowing being to protect him, but Moyra again sent her spirit foward to take the blast.  The pain made her dizzy, but then Father Benjamin spoke again.

"Now, Moyra.  It is time.  Call me back into the world."

Moyra didn't understand it, but she knew what to do.  She gazed into her stone and concentrated on pulling Father Benjamin's essence to her summoning wall, and to her astonishment, there he appeared.

His closed-eyed look was that of infinite patience, combined with a steely resolve.  The glowing beast still guarded his master, but Moyra again stared into her stone and then into the sky.  Thunder cracked above, and a bolt of lightning struck down the beast, exposing the elf to the stern gaze of Father Benjamin.

Elien, who had just achieved immortality himself, looked as though he'd seen a ghost.

"You.  My minions said they destroyed you.  They watched you die!"

Benjamin opened his eyes and addressed the cursed summoner.  "You believe you understand immortality elf, but you do not. Your new master has deceived you. Or rather, he has passed on his own flawed understanding.  You cannot kill the light. You can bring the darkness for a time, but as long as there are those with light in their hearts, the light will always return.  Unfortunately for you, the light in your heart is lost.

May the gods take mercy on you."

The priest seemed to draw in the light from his crusader, and channeled it into his hands.  And as he raised them to the sky, a bolt of judgment shot at the elf, and he crumpled.  The battle was won.

"Father Benjamin!"  Moyra couldn't contain her elation.  "You're alive!  How?!  How have you come back to us?"

"As I told you Moyra - as long as you have the light, I will always be with you.  You did well today against the dark forces, but this is only the beginning.  Ret-Talus has more minions just as powerful.

We need to remain vigilant, and you Moyra are the key.  Go forth to the city and tell Lady Eldwyn an General Farthen of our success.  Muster the full strength of the Vargath, the Vanguards, and the other factions of Itharia that still see the light.  The time has come for the darkness to subside.

Then there was a flash of light, and the priest was gone.

Posted by Frank Balog
Frank Balog is the lead playtester for Summoner Wars.


Comments


Bent Cloak commented:

Cool stuff!

Don't suppose we have an ETA on Alliances yet?

Posted on 2014-07-07.

killercactus commented:

Sure we do - the box cover video said October 2014

Posted on 2014-07-07.

Hilgendwarf commented:

Great job KC! I really enjoyed that!

Posted on 2014-07-07.

tristak commented:

Sounds pretty cool! Can't wait!

Posted on 2014-07-07.

ZeeJr commented:

Thanks. Good read.

From the story details, Moyra sounds like she can take wounds upon herself to protect her units. Like a permanent intercession. Evil Elien sounds like he can blast his units to damage everything around them. Like granting the Firebeast ability to all of his commons. Not a lot of clues about the common abilities, but still a whole lot of fun while we wait for previews.

Posted on 2014-07-07.

killercactus commented:

Reading it back, I realize that I didn't do a stellar job of teasing two of the three FP common abilities. This is because they didn't come into play during this game, but I could've embellished a bit I guess.

For some crazy reason, I was focused more on the VV. I guess it could've been that I was playing them and I made them... There's lots of clues about the common abilities there though. As a matter of fact, the VV unit with the least info about what his card does is probably Father Benjamin if you can believe that. There's some here though.

Posted on 2014-07-07.

BuckWilde commented:

That's some pretty sweet stuff. I didn't have much experience with the Fallen Phoenix during playtesting, but reading about it renewed my excitement for Alliances. Great write-up, KC!

Posted on 2014-07-07.

freezinpee commented:

Summoner Wars alliance would be a great wedding gift. alliance's will be glorious

Posted on 2014-07-07.

Cuffs Alister commented:

Of course the previews start RIGHT WHEN IM ABOUT TO LEAVE TO A PLACE WITHOUT INTERNET. That put aside, this was a pretty sweet story KC.

Posted on 2014-07-07.

umbrageofsnow commented:

Okay, here's what I've got:
Summoner: Moyra Skylark (Makes it so only one unit (within X spaces of summoner?) can be attacked this turn?) (Or is it a 2-of event)
Ability: Can take wounds for units?
Event: Chant of Deception that works only on Summoner?
Event: Storm Mage call lighting as an event?
Champ: Father Benjamin (Comes back from the discard pile? Triggered by low Summoner Health?)(Ranged)
Champ: Vargath
Champ: Vargath
Common: Defender but Vargathier?
Common: Crusader (Rider? with aura. Aura beefs up champs AND commons.)
Common: Small Angel (Cherub?) (Ranged) (Some other kind of Flight, or maybe Heroic Flight again that would be neat.)

Summoner: Darth Elien (Can use FB's Hellfire on target own unit? Within 2 straight line spaces?)
Event: Reroll an attack?
Champ: Undead version of old champ
Champ: New champ with Cultist-like ability
Champ: Undead Fire Drake?
Common: Cultist but Firey-er?
Common: Warrior but Undead?
Common: Being of Pure Energy, a Fire Beast

Posted on 2014-07-07.

Divljan commented:

Finally! It's about time we got some more Alliance buzz going! Here's hoping full previews start in short order, or at least teaser reports of the other factions as well!

Posted on 2014-07-08.

Ad Hoc commented:

This is awesome. Oh man, I CAN'T WAIT to find out what all these do!

Posted on 2014-07-08.

mid-boss commented:

Awesome. Can't wait for those card previews now.

Thanks KC!

Posted on 2014-07-08.

sitnam90 commented:

So anyone else wonder or hope for a few more of thes battle reports? Still got 3 to go

Posted on 2014-07-08.

BuckWilde commented:

I would be glad to take a crack at writing one of these, if there is a need for writers.

Posted on 2014-07-08.

thenobleknave commented:

I'll see if I can get the next one up by Monday. BuckWilde, shoot me a PM if you want to help :)

Posted on 2014-07-10.

BuckWilde commented:

Sweet! Can do.

Posted on 2014-07-10.

killercactus commented:

Kyle just let me know who you guys are gonna do. I was plannin on doing a CF battle soon, so if you could not use them, I'd be happy.

Posted on 2014-07-11.

This comment has been deleted.

BuckWilde commented:

Well said, Dema.

Posted on 2014-07-12.

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