Key – Italic is thoughts instead of speaking.
Painting, what a strange medium, you never know what is behind what you are currently painting. Used canvas is the best, another painter’s creativity and energy lives beyond the last coat of white paint. Perhaps it is a meadow all aglow with flowers and bees, or maybe the portrait of a naked woman or even a grueling landscape of death and dismay. I have always wondered if the paintings already on the canvas affect the paintings that come after.
This one is very interesting, why am I painting short armored men and an intricately carved hall surrounded by a vast hoard of creatures? Sometimes the canvas just talks to me. The detail is even more than I can hope for, it almost looks like you could reach out and touch the painting. I cannot resist even though it is still wet and the slightest touch could destroy one of my best pieces hand extends and hovers bare millimeters from the oil on the canvas. Do the characters and the places in paintings actually hand passes through the canvas exist?
Noise, what is all this noise? Banging of metal, chanting of deep voices and the marching of hobnailed boots. This is my painting, can this be real?
The scene spins and an alter stretches out before Thorek Ironbrow cold and hard but pulsing with great energies. Can these be our saviors? Scanning the room as 4 individuals (Lords of Fate) appear in different locations. Three appear to be human, but the last is a pile of moving rocks. The humans appeared out of thin air as the rock man rose out of the floor.
The first is a human in a brown robe, obviously a man of the cloth or pursuer of knowledge. (Tertullian)
The second not quite human, but once was. He is similar to some of those outside laying siege to our position. (Drakul)
The third uses a cane and has a very surprised look on his face. Masked very well for a human, but humans have never been able to mask their true emotions unlike us. Is he a cripple that needs a cane to walk and carries no weapons. (Angel)
Lastly a pile of living rocks? Perhaps it is the earth coming to our defense after many millennia of a close relationship crafting and giving purpose to stone so deserving of attention. (Grignak)
All are guided to the great stone meeting table and presented with food and drink. The discussion with them is a blur. As a group they are not sure if they indeed are the saviors of our world. We Dwarves and the fickle Fey led by Queen Maebh are all that is left to defend it from the Dark outside. As much as I distrust the Fey and their methods, why do they just sit back and watch their world die?
I lead the Lords of Fate outside to witness the death of Thane Kadrin Redmane. The battle has yet to begin, but the result is inevitable. Savage blows are struck by the Thane and the Black Hood, but as the final blow impacts the Thanes body it rises into the air pulled towards the sky by his hammer (The Eternal Champion). Hovering for a period of time and silencing the dark hoard that had been cheering so loudly. Suddenly the body plummets into the chasm opened by the battle which slams shut with such force the walls of our mountain shake. The hammer is lost but at least not to the hoard. My heart screams in agony but I must maintain my composure.
Leading the Lords of Fate into the hall all are looking at the altar. The hammer sits in its rightful place even though moments before it had disappeared into the earth. The Thane where is he? That is too much to hope for, he has moved on to the halls of the ancestors but the hammer has returned to us, praised be. “We must reach Master Engineer Malachai stranded in the fort at the mouth of the valley. He is our only chance to hold back the hoard for any length of time. Our weapons are failing and we need him to correct the problem.” I leave the Lords of Fate to their discussion and approach the altar. The hammer looks the same but the energy it produces are different. There is something inside the hammer, has it been possessed, has it been twisted by the magic of the hoard outside?
The hammer flies from the altar to land in the hands Gotrek Redmane the son of the Thane. He shakes his head after catching the hammer and then strides to the table and joins the Lords of Fate. What is he doing, he has no business there.
After a long discussion the saviors and the Thanes Son have a plan of action. They move outside with a purpose. The human with the red hat and cane, begins to create something out of clay. Not a cripple after all but why carry a cane? He continues to pull more and more clay from a small metal box until he has at least a thousand times more than could fit in the box. The detail in the sculpture is amazing, it is almost as detailed as some of our stoneworkers, but it is clay and not a true medium as it can be easily shattered and ground under foot. Ah it is a Wyvern the size of a small pony, what good is that? The man in the red hat stands up and leans close to the head of the Wyvern. Suddenly it begins to move and grow in size. What dark magic is this? It grows to the size of a tower with a basket on its back. The saviors and the Thane’s son climb into the basket and the Wyvern leaps into the air.
They soar over the hoard heading directly for the fort. _ They are going to make it!_ The ever-present clouds boil and a gigantic shape explodes from them. It is a giant Wyvern almost as big as a Wyrm (Dragon). Oh no!!!!! As quickly as the wyrm appeared it flies back into the clouds as if it never existed. The wyvern lands safely at least from the hoard.
The hoard army is moving and shifting. Obviously the trip back will not be as easy as the one to get there. After a tense hour the wyvern lifts into the air and the hoard on the ground mobilizes. The wyvern flies at odd angles and twist and turns to avoid the archer units, but there are too many to completely avoid. The blasted Skaven begin to throw unholy green fire into the sky. Almost as quickly the ground begins to shake and many fall spraying their brethren and those crowded around. An uncountable number of bats fill the sky. Oh no, where did the hoard get this ability and why have we not seen this before?
The clouds begin to boil and then explode with Harpies, Wyverns and other flying beasts. The winds swirl violently and thunder begins to roll. The fliers of the hoard begin to be buffeted by the winds, swarmed by bats and blasted by bolts of lightning that split the sky. How is this possible? Even with the forces of nature on the side of the Lords of Fate the sheer numbers of the hoard begin to break through. The Goblins launch their suicide kites into the sky aiming for the wyvern. The hammer flies and strikes the only Goblin to maintain control through the wind, bats and lightning causing a massive explosion. When the fireball and smoke clears the Lords of Fate and their wyvern have disappeared.
How can this be, they were the ones to save us." Great drafts of air push down on the walls of the citadel but all that is visible is a swarm of bats. Then suddenly the Wyvern is there and lading in the courtyard. The Lords of Fate and Master Engineer Malachai dismount but I must contain my pleasure and just enjoy the success. The damage to the hoard is a loss, not of manpower but the fact that they were beaten. The man in the red hat walks to the head of the Wyvern, whispers in its ear and smacks it across the face. Instead of reacting in anger the Wyvern shatters into pieces of clay that he proceeds to pick-up and put back in the metal box.
They have done more than I could imagine, but how will they help us stop the entire hoard?