Saturday Book of the Day
(Every Saturday I post one of the player created books I have gathered so far in my library for everyone to read. You can find this library in the Magical Housing on the Oasis server under the name of Minxes, in North Freeport. If you’d like to donate a book to my library, simply create a character on the Oasis server and send Minxes mail requesting a blank book, I will gladly send you one and you can send it back to me once you’ve written your story. Then I’ll add it to my library.)
THE BALLAD OF BATTLE BRIDGE
attributed to Doctrina Fidus
edited by Arthalion Gatecaller
“WHEN we first came to Odus
We were strong, and wise and bold!
The Erudites were brothers then,
In braver days of old.
But as the days did lengthen, and
We set our minds at ease, then some
Questioned, saying, “Why shall we
Not do whate’er we please?”
Is not all knowledge bountiful?
Will not the greatest fall?
O brother, let us study death:
The greatest power of all!”
But others held that Erud’s Vision
Such things did gainsay.
For surely if we searched all things,
Our minds would go astray?
More heated grew the speeches,
And more tension filled the air,
When passion grows, our reason shrinks,
Our intellect to impair.
As we grow hot in faction,
So in culture we grow cold.
And the fire and mind of Erud fled,
From glorious days of old.
So those who pledgéd forward,
Fled the city of their birth.
And travelled further southwards,
To abide beneath the earth.
And there they gathered knowledge,
And their minds they filled with hate,
For those they thought had drove them out,
And cheated them of their fate.
Years passed in preparation,
When at length they judged it right,
A challenge came to Erudin
To muster their strength and fight.
So the mighty host of Paineel marched out,
Well armed with spell and shield,
But northward, war had slumbered;
There were few to take the field.
The armies met in darkest wood,
Across a river wide,
Where but a lonely stone-wrought bridge
Divided side from side.
Each side surveyed its enemies,
With frowns and purséd lips.
And spells were readied, weapons gleamed,
Hands whitened on shield grips.
And to the fore of Paineel’s host
Came dreadful and mighty Cunart.
A shadow knight of awesome pow’r,
Hed vowed this war to start.
To the centre of the bridge he came,
Defied the kin of light:
Your skills are small, your magic weak,
You have no will to fight!
But hark! The cry is Atos!
And lo! The ranks divide!
The paladin of Erud
Comes stately in his stride!
And Atos faced to Cunart there,
And scorn was in his eye.
Ill smite thee dead, in Erud’s name,
And the gods that you defy!
And Cunart looked on Atos,
His lips were in a sneer.
I stand for right, and knowledge,
And freedom from foolish fear.
So, come and fight me, paladin!
Believest thou art tough?
Call all thy strength, and cursed be he,
Who first cries Hold, enough!
Thus said, he rushed on Atos,
Who, not a thing dismayed,
Took up his shield, and charged him,
With fearsome clash of blade.
They clashed upon the stone-wrought bridge,
And strove with might and main,
Their swords rang out, smacked back and forth,
Till blood flowed down like rain.
About them rose the war cry,
As the armies locked in fray
When Erudite fought Erudite,
On that destructive day.
For the arrows sped, and the swords they flailed,
Death wrought on every side.
And in the middle, on the bridge,
Atos and Cunart strived.
The battle raged about them,
And they struggled hand to hand,
While magic zipped, and corpses piled,
Upon the blood soaked land.
At length, Atos and Cunart,
When day had turned to night,
With bruising flesh, and gasping breath,
Allowed a brief respite.
As they stood there, all heated,
Though neither’d his fill
They saw the sun had fallen and
The forest had all gone still.
And Atos eyes grew wide, and they
Beyond his hated foe,
Beheld the corpse of Cunart,
Torn apart by a magical blow.
And Cunart could see Atos there,
His face relaxed in peace,
His breast transfixed by arrow-shot,
His troubles were all at cease.
The champions gazed about the scene,
The carnage of the strife,
The Erudites that lay so still,
Forever bereft of life.
And they realised as they looked about,
At bodies stained with red,
The war had long been over,
And now they themselves were dead.
The ghost of Atos looked on Cunart
Raising his weapon once more,
And rushed upon his foe again,
To never abandon the war.
And Cunart, nothing loath at this,
The spirit shadow knight,
He readied spell and summoned skill,
Returning himself to the fight.
And though that war is ended now,
The weapons gone to store,
The shades of Atos and Cunart
Still clash in ghostly war.
When travelling, dear Erudite,
Do listen close, I pray:
For oer the bridge, the whisp’ring wind
Still carries that dismal fray.
There Atos combats Cunart,
There the darkness meets the day.
They struggle still, and shall until
We find a better way.”