A Grenfolk youngling discovers she has an innate arcane ability that flows from within her which leads her far from her small farmhouse in Grenshire - an adventure teeming with high fantasy.
The fierce wind rippled over the sand, washing out the five men in black robes. The full moon lit up the dessert as though it was midday, and the group of priests cast long shadows over the sandy dunes. They marched single file with deliberate steps. Their hoods were pulled tightly forward, and their red scarves whipped out behind them in the sandstorm. Across their backs were scythes stained brown from the sacrifices in their God’s name. Most notable, however, was what trailed behind the men.
Twisted and scaled, the creatures marched solemnly behind their masters. The sand hissed and charred beneath their feet – the blackened and burned ash footprints caught in the wind and whipped away. The cool night air of Radapeche chilled the warped creatures flesh and they steamed in the darkness.
The city of Oronoo loomed in the distance, marked by the bone tower of Bamku. The chanting of the loyal and devout Radapechites droned softly as they celebrated the Blood Moon. There was to be grand feasting, which most of the city’s population relished as they were forced to ration themselves throughout the year, saving their food for this very grand celebration. If the people were lucky, the demons and priests would leave more than discarded scraps.
As the procession of the High Priests and their demonic counterparts entered the city, the chanting of the followers became more enthusiastic. The throngs of the devout surged forward against the temple defenders, who lined the procession route reaching towards their priesthood – hoping for a blessing, a curse – any acknowledgement from their God.
The priests continued their march to the center of the city. The glow from the massive bonfire in the feasting area flickered on their veiled faces. There, they will meet with their God, Bamku, and perform the ritual that allows them to control their demons. When the moon reaches its highest point in the night sky, young arcanists gathered from around the continent by Bamku’s seekers will be sacrificed – their hearts cut from their chests while they still live, to be consumed while they still beat. This transfers the arcane ability to Bamku’s trusted High Priests, granting them the ability to fuse their Divine and Demonic magics together.
Atuar sar Bamku, Arch Bishop of the church of Bamku, sat next to Fallen God’s Throne. His face was gaunt, his expression stoic and his salt and peppered goatee well kept and groomed to a point. Garbed in rich, blood red robes, he kept his hood pulled forward. In his skeletal fist, a scythe – the haft heavily jeweled and the blade, faded from a brilliant gold to a dark, dusky brown near the blade – was gripped tightly. Altuar’s Demon, a Seeker, stripped to the waist displaying it’s muscular physique, stood at his master’s side with pale white eyes and horned forehead.
Between the dark God’s throne and the great feasting table five sacrifices, stripped nude and strapped to stone altars shiver in terror. One of them, a female youngling of Grenshire decent whimpers and sobs softly, biting her lip and struggling against the tight, rough, rope keeping her pinned down - the end of her existence is quickly approaching.
The high priests enter the ring of celebration, slowly moving in front of the sacrificial altars. The mob of followers relaxes their push and a hush falls. Servants rush forward and kneel, their hands above their heads holding gilded red velvet pillows. On each cushion, a sacrificial blade rests.
“My friends!” Atuar’s voice boomed, “The Blood of the Moon ceremony commences! Soon these beings powers will be fused with our great Necromancers, allowing us to be closer than ever to our demonic brothers.”
The five priests slowly took the knives from the servants and stepped over the altars. The blades were rusted and stained from previous ceremonies. The sacrifices squirmed in their bonds to no avail. The youngling from Grenshire continued to squirm, crying out for aide.
Bamku rose from his throne and paced the line of altars, his gaze moving over the body’s of those to be sacrified and to the eyes of each of his high priests.
“Feast,” Bamku hissed. “Feast on their hearts, and replenish your strength! Devour their lifeblood and let it flow into you.”
In unison the priests raised the daggers and plunged them into the chests of their victims.