The journey was long, and arduous, but we finally arrived in the great, sprawling metropolis of Londinium, where we were met by a mighty, vigourously trained warrior named Dï¿½an-Dï¿½an. He too had been drawn by the call, so in companionship, fuelled by strong Dwarven ale, the three of us crossed the city, sometimes navigating chaotic, deadly highways, sometimes making our way through dingy, smoke-polluted underground catacombs.
Finally, however, we made it to the vast, unforgiving arena of Hyde Park, where we came across other strange and exotic travellers who had come to answer the call of the High Council. Among them were the solemn Monkey of Questions, with his faithful servant Mushroom, accompanied by the enigmatic Norseman, Ikke Av Flesk. There was a maiden by the name of Lottie, and a companion of hers, both hailing from the far-flung Southlands, where every woman is born with hair of midnight blue, and the men are servants to their every desire.
Suddenly, as if they had been there watching us all along, the High Council appeared. A terrifying quintet, they struck fear into all of our hearts. There was Iceduck, the long-bearded prince of the Western-Wilds, accompanied by his queen. There were the silent Typhlosion and the disarmingly friendly but immensely powerful King Rex. The chairman of the council, Psythor, gripped a staff of iron and looked over us subjects from his ivory tower with bared teeth and an acid tongue, while at his side stood the fearsome Joeno, a tall, black-robed law-giver, ready at any moment to strike into a oblivion any one of us who transgressed his ancient constitution.
Forced to prostrate ourselves in their presence, they began to address us, though what they said I can scarcely remember. How long we knelt, the angry sun beating down on us in that cruel arena, it is hard to say. Eventually, however, the High Council selected some of our number to perform a special task for them. They drew up a long list of bizarre and exotic items, and sent the group off, unarmed and fearful, into the far reaches of the world to complete this callous quest. As they set off, the High Council laughed among themselves ï¿½ we would never see some of the adventurers again.
Meanwhile, the drums of battle had commenced. The arena was cleared, and we found ourselves at the edges, shivering as a bitter wind suddenly blew over and fog rolled across the dusty ground. With a grim clank, King Rex stepped into the centre, armed with a fearsome wooden staff, that seemed to have been torn straight from a tree, such was the jagged, untempered violence of its blade. He was clad for battle, and gave a fearsome roar, banging the base of his staff on the floor, challenging any man to take him on. Nobody moved, even the great warrior Dï¿½an-Dï¿½an looked at the ground in fear. Suddenly, however, two men stepped into the arena simultaneously, a strange light ablaze in their eyes. Who were these men, so brave or foolish as to take on the might of King Rex?
One was the mysterious Norseman, Ikke Av Flesk, gripping a staff of his own, hewn from the wood of the snowy pine forests of the frozen North. The other was the manservant brought by the blue-haired southern warrior-princess, holding a simple wooden sword. Together they stepped forth to take on their mighty foe.
The battle was joined, and it raged on for hours, and all we could do was watch in horror as every blow the young men landed on King Rex was brought back double by his fearsome staff. Though they were two, and he was one, he had the strength of ten men, and there was little they could do to overpower him. Their only chance lay in cunning and agility, and so, little by little, they began to slip past him, coming close to draw out a blow, and then dodging it at the last minute. Eventually, he grew exhausted, for his armour was heavy, and the sun continued to beat down, unforgivingly. When at last it seemed like they had succeeded, and might be able to land a crippling blow, there was a trumpet call from further afield.
Clambering across the slopes of Hyde Park there came a ragged group of adventurers ï¿½ The group who the High Council had sent off hours before, or at least, what remained. Those who returned were wounded, exhausted, and sorrowful, but they gripped the chalices and chests with pride as they presented them to the High Council, who beamed with greed as they looked upon the riches.
Presently, the Lord High Councillor Psythor stood atop his Ivory Tower and addressed us all. ï¿½My subjects! You have done well this dayï¿½ Know this! You are among the bravest of the land, you have travelled far and wide, and today you have proved yourselves worthy. We grant you your freedom, and reward you with an almighty feast! Let us go to the Piazza De Leicester, where we shall dine at the foot of the Chaplin Colossus, comrades in arms.ï¿½
A great cheer went up among the assembled company, and in joy and abandon, we crossed the city to adulation from the multitude, to the great Piazza De Leicester, where hours of feasting, drinking and celebration awaited. It was deep in the night when we finally parted company with the other travellers. Tired and worn, but with the spirit of comradeship ablaze within us, Veyka and myself began the long journey back to our homeland, older and wiser.
Page written by Joeno.
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