Forgive my haste in setting down the events of this night, but they are a rush though my head and I must set them down before the heat fades from my soul. I will try to give you a little history of the event, but there are things in this tale that doubtless you will not understand unless you have experienced the world of Guild Wars for yourself.
The tale begins on this first night of October in the year two thousand eight of the common era, on a dark and snowy night at Frost Gate outpost. Frost Gate is a small and lonely place high in the mountains, with gray and snowy skies. Night is falling and it is becoming hard to see through the blowing snow. A high gate towers above the entrance, but the small size of the outpost with its half dozen dwarven huts huddled in the snow hardly matches the majesty of the gate or the huge cauldron like bowl that is the Dwarven light in the center of the square. That great green cauldron, with its curved, pointed spires converging on the un-earthly greenish-blue light is some 15 meters high.
I am here as a Warrior and Elemental, and as this night began, a lowly mid-level ten after some twenty hours of campaigning in Tyria in the world of Guild Wars. It has been a struggle to get here and twice before I have attempted the next path in the journey with failure both times. The mission is a long and torturous trek along narrow twisting trails through the snow, past high peaks, mountain passes and ice caves to Beacons Perch. Along the way are many monsters and other horrid and deformed creatures that live in these mountains. But I am eager to press on from here and so I search for a party for the mission to give it another try. I have learned that even with the help of five of the hired henchmen in these outposts are not up to the task alone. Twice I have tried this mission with these level eight henchmen and twice I have failed miserably. Previously another player at level thirteen and I with a party totaling six, as is the custom here, tried to press up the mountain and were driven back repeatedly by the beasts of the mountains.
But on this night all would be different. As I searched for a party for the mission, a savior appeared. Her name is Quantum Delight, and she is a small sprite of a girl, but with powers beyond your imagining if you have not seen such as her before. She is a level twenty elemental. Dressed in a white uniform of the class, and with a white flowing cape with her guild insignia, she ran about hastily assembling her party. As I was trying to assemble a party as well, she deigned to ask me to join her party, and I eagerly accepted, since I had some ken of the powers of a Level Twenty, but I could only imagine the excitement and rush that would befall me that night.
We were joined by, as I only dimly recall now, a level 15 necromancer or cultist. I shall call him our mage and wish I could remember his name to give him his due in this tale, for as you will learn, his skills were also essential to our success. Among his many skills, as I was to find out later, was his power to re-animate dead flesh of our fallen foes to aid in our fight. I am sorry that I forget his name, for without him the mission would also have been a trial. He was dressed in black with red trim and a black and red cape to match.
Quantum filled out her party with a healer, an archer and a brawler, all henchmen from the local population of Frost Gate, and we set off into the night, across the small valley and then climbing the narrow twisting trail up the mountain. It was not long before we came across our first challenge for the mountains in these parts are full of creeping and crushing foes. I am sorry that I can not set down here each and every battle along the way, but the whole experience is a rush through my memory as we pushed on through the blinding snow, and darkness in our mad rush toward Beacons Perch.
Quantum was in the lead, her bright cape thrashing back and forth, running at full tilt up the mountain with no heed for the horrors that might lay beyond. The rest of our party, including me ran hard and breathlessly to keep up.
At the first challenge of only a few of the beasts, I rushed headlong into the fray with my sword drawn and began to cut the monsters down, the henchmen at my side. The healer and mage kept to the rear. Up front, Quantum reared in the characteristic back breaking pose of the Elemental casting and the largest of the monsters fell dead to the ground in flash of pink and purple light. We quickly dispatched the remaining of the half dozen foes and we rushed on, or I thought we did. But behind us I heard a throaty rattle of death struggling back to life and we were then joined by the most hideously awful things that you can imagine. From each of the bloody corpses of the fallen beasts, there arose a stinking and dripping horror of bones and exposed muscle and sinew. Each one roared to life with a ghastly sound and then followed us as we rushed up the mountain. I was at first surprised by the rapidity of this resurrection of the fallen corpses, but I soon became overwhelmed by the rushing bodies of those horrors as they rushed up the mountain, jostling and crushing myself and the rest of the henchmen along the narrow trail. The smell was beyond description as was the slick slimy mess as it dripped along the trail. The Henchmen and I were all smeared with the stinking mess of the horrors as we ran to keep up with Quantum in her headlong rush up the mountain.
Again and again the same thing would happen, the henchmen and I would rush into the fray accompanied by the resurrected horrors as we approached each new group of beastly foes. Quantum was out front of the party knocking down the largest and most formidable of the foes with a blast of her elemental staff, while our mage and healer kept the health of myself and the henchmen strong through the fight with their healing powers. The bone horrors did not last long in the fight, and there was no hope of further resurrection for them, but they were remarkably effective in knocking down the beasts that we encountered. It took only a few sword blows from me or a few arrows or hammer blows from the henchmen to dispatch beasts as they were softened up by the bony terrors from the last fight. With each fight the horrors, whose reanimation only lasted a few minutes, would drop in a sloppy heap and disappear in the bloody snow, and after each fight was won as we rushed to collect the booty left on the snowy trail, our mage would cast a wide and awful spell across the corpses of the fallen beasts and the ghastly roar of re-animation would again provide us with new minions to ease the next fight.
It was all I could do to keep up, running at full speed up the mountain between fights after quickly watching for any booty assigned to Windy Flayer, my name in this world. At times the darkness and blowing snow, not to mention the fallen beasts would obscure the booty, and were it not for the flickering light that is emitted from that booty, I would have missed much of my share of the spoils.
Near the top of the trail as we neared a large gate, Quantum ran off on a side trail and picked up a large cask. It was quite strange to see her short, slight form carrying a large barrel back through the snow, but I knew from previous missions what she was up to, so I hung back from the gate to give her room. She ran right up to the gate and between the massive doors of the huge gate she dropped the cask and stepped back. From the top of the large barrel one might see a small string of sparks and then a large blast through snow and smoke in a wide circle. The gate shuttered and the pieces fell aside so that we might pass.
At long last we breached the towering gates at the top of the mountain, shut down the powerful siege machines that protected the high mountain peak, braved the spiders of the snow cave and arrived at the outpost of the Dwarven King. After a short break where we were heralded as saviors and our efforts applauded at some length, we were set yet another task which took us down the mountain along narrow trails, battling more ghastly beasts and hunched and slinking foes.
Over and over through the dark and stormy night, Quantum was out front in a blinding flash of elemental power crushing the most powerful foes, while we fought along side the bony, skinless and bloody horror that our mage provided from the last fallen beasts. And no less than twice did we all receive one thousand experience points to further our quests in this world.
Thanks to the power and expertise of Quantum Delight, and our mage, I was taken from a mid level ten warrior to level eleven in just one campaign. As we reached Beacons Perch Outpost, I began to catch my breath and look for a place to clean my armor of the stench of the resurrected bloody horrors that had aided us and to sell my booty. I reveled in the rushing excitement of the long trek and bloody fight and the warm glow of admiration for the powerful and skillful Quantum and Mage. They had doubtless done this mission, and ones like it many times before, but they came back to help those of us with less skill and less power to experience this rush that is like no other in all the world.
Thanks be to Quantum Delight and all other Heroes that show us the way in this world.
Set down this day, the first of October in the year two thousand and eight of the common era by Windy Flayer, of Tyria.
Story Copyright (c) 2008, Darrell Duffy, All Rights Reserved.