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Chapter 27: The Battle Begins

Chapter 27: The Battle Begins

In the Tech Support Forum, Ephesos and Nioca picked up several first aid kits. Dikiyoba was gathering up the remaining potions.

"What do we have left?" Ephesos asked.

"Dikiyoba found a curing potion, two healing potions, enough herbs for three energy potions, and an invulnerability potion."

"Hmm. No balm of life potions?" Ephesos asked.

"No," Dikiyoba said.

"The invulnerability potion should probably go with someone planning to go destroy the summoning machine. I'll take the curing and healing potions," Ephesos said.

As Ephesos took the potions, Riibu entered.

"What are you doing here?" Nioca asked.

Riibu attempted to hide in all the equipment. "Staying well away from the fighting. I'm not a fighter. I'm just going to stay here until it's all over. Like the GIFTR are."

Filth Finder poked his head out of a dark corner. "We're only here because we have nymphs to care for. It's not good for children to be involved in war."

"You could help anyone who gets injured over to us," Nioca said.

Riibu shuddered. "No way!"

"Or you could act as a runner and get supplies that people need," Ephesos said.

"That's an idea. I'll think about it. And maybe I'll do it," Riibu said.

Ephesos and Nioca entered the Announcements Forum and dropped the first aid kits against a wall. The Stew Boy sat out of the way, looking unhappy.

"What's the matter, Stew Boy?" Ephesos asked.

"I'm not much of a fighter. I just don't think I can..." the Stew Boy said.

"How does helping anyone who get hurt over to us sound?" Ephesos asked.

"I could do that, I suppose. Thanks," the Stew Boy said.


Emperor Tullegolar rubbed his head where it had slammed into the Admin Panel and adjusted his grip on the slith spear.

Drakefyre turned to Garrison and Nemesis. "Now, what are you doing in here? How did you get in here?"

Emperor Tullegolar slowly rose behind Drakefyre.

"We were... we were..." Garrison stuttered, "Behind you!"

Drakefyre drew his waveblade and whirled around, blocking the spear thrust. "Tullegolar!"

Emperor Tullegolar glared at Garrison. "Traitor! I... I... I knew it! Just like we planned, Nemesis! Kill him!"

"Er... what?" Nemesis looked bewildered.

Garrison drew his sword and turned to Nemesis angrily. "You and Tullegolar were plotting together!?"

"No, I..." Nemesis fumbled to load his crossbow. Garrison struck the crossbow out of his hands. "Hey!" Nemesis drew his sword and attacked.

Emperor Tullegolar parried the Drakefyre and placed himself in front of the Administrator Panel. He and Drakefyre watched each other for a moment, both searching for the other's weaknesses.

Garrison and Nemesis dueled their way around the table and towards the bookshelf. Nemesis tripped over a fallen book and fell. Garrison quickly stabbed Nemesis.

"There." Garrison started to turn away but stopped as Nemesis's sword rose into the air of its own accord. "What the...?" Garrison attempted to fend it off, but it moved too quickly for him. Nemesis's sword ran Garrison through. As Garrison collapsed, the sword dropped to the ground with a loud clang.

"Divine warrior!" Drakefyre's blade moved in a blur. Emperor Tullegolar barely blocked the next two strikes. The third one heavily grazed his side. He fell to his knees, but still managed to stab at Drakefyre. The spear bounced off harmlessly, and Drakefyre kicked it out of Emperor Tullegolar's hands.

Emperor Tullegolar held his injured side and glared at Drakefyre. "At least I did something to deserve being banned this time, huh? But wait... Dintiradan, the Lurker, and Wanderer attempted to take over the boards too and they aren't going to be banned, are they? Everyone else has plenty of leeway, but the second I step out of line..."

Drakefyre ignored him and turned towards the Administrator Panel. He pressed a button.

"No!" Emperor Tullegolar kicked out, knocking Drakefyre to the floor.

Drakefyre stood back up slowly, attempting to keep his anger in check and rubbing his knee.

Emperor Tullegolar fumbled in his robes for something.

"If you think you'll ever..." Drakefyre stopped speaking as Emperor Tullegolar hurled the mechanic pencil. It buried itself in Drakefyre's chest. Drakefyre pulled it out and snapped it. "That hole you keep digging yourself into looks more and more like a grave every time you... you..." Drakefyre doubled over from the poison. "You..."

Emperor Tullegolar crawled over to his slith spear, and then pulled himself upright, leaning on the Administrator Panel for support. "Yes. Me." He stabbed Drakefyre. Then he stabbed him again, just to make sure he was truly dead. He saw that Nemesis and Garrison were both on the ground and laughed. "It's a shame to lose my supporters, but Garrison was apparently a spy and Nemesis was probably a weakling anyway. Besides, I have control over the Administrator Panel now, so it was all worth it." He examined the Administrator Panel. All the labels and displays were in a strange, alien alphabet. Emperor Tullegolar recognized it immediately. "What! It's in Novah!"


The missile users stood in the middle of the Geneforge 4: Rebellion Forum. Alorael has climbed onto a half-built fountain to get a better vantage point. The Silent Assassin stood beside Lenar, though he was armed with only a knife. Behind the missile users, Saunders and the Almighty Do-er of Stuff held the fluffy turtles back.

The first of the rats charged across the forum, led by a gargantuan rat, a white rat, and three giant rats. Alorael began to snipe, but everyone else had to wait until the rats got into range.

"The white and green rats are dangerous from a distance, so aim for them first. The red rats are mostly harmless but they can get underfoot and trip you up, so watch for them," Delicious Vlish said.

The rats drew nearer. Inspector Walnut took a few steps forward, but the Almighty Do-er of Stuff stopped him. "Not yet. Wait just a little longer."

"They're in range now. Fire!" Stareye said.

A volley of arrows, bolts, razordisks, javelins, thorns, and magic spells struck the rats. Lenar's reaperdisk killed the gargantuan rat, which took out several rats next to it when it fell. The three giant rats in the lead fled when Delicious Vlish's terror spell hit them. The white rat dodged Student of Trinity's rock.

"Green rats! Curse them!" The white rat cast a firebolt at Lazarus. Lazarus ducked just in time. Several Spiderwebbers were hit by curse rays and fumbled with their weapons.

"Fire again!" Stareye said. More projectiles landed amid the rats.

Ephesos joined the missile users. "How's it going?"

Tyranicus threw another javelin. "Not bad. Oof." A curse ray knocked Tyranicus to the ground. "I'm not dead yet, so that's something."

"RETRIBUTION!!!" Ephesos's spell took out the green rat and several rats close to it.


The Stew Boy helped Fatman to the Announcements Forum and ran off to help someone else.

"What happened?" Nioca asked as he cast a healing spell.

"I got hit by a firebolt spell from one of the rats, that's what happened. What did you think, a barbeque accident?" Fatman said.

"Well, you're all healed up now."

"So I can go back and get pummeled by the rats again? Gee, thanks."

While Nioca and Fatman were distracted, Emperor Tullegolar staggered out of the Moderator Board.

"Tullegolar! Look at you!" Nioca said.

"Yes, I was injured while, um, preventing Tyranicus from being slain by a red rat."

"That was noble of you. Here." Nioca cast a healing spell on Emperor Tullegolar.


"Um, you're not done with me. You said I was all healed up while I clearly am not. See?" Fatman showed Nioca a small scratch on his arm. Emperor Tullegolar used the opportunity to sneak back into the Moderator Board.


The moment Emperor Tullegolar was gone, Garrison used the last of his strength and the bookshelf to pull himself up. He looked over the books sitting on the shelf until he found the Novah-English dictionary. He also grabbed the book on fluffy kittens. He ripped the covers off of the books and switched them. Then he placed the fluffy kitten book in the Novah-English dictionary cover back on the shelf. He crawled over the quilting corner and tucked the dictionary under the quilt. Then he crawled over the partially-built summoning machine. He grabbed a hammer and stood up again.

Emperor Tullegolar entered. He saw Garrison and shook his head.

Garrison was about to swing the hammer into the summoning machine when Emperor Tullegolar pulled the hammer from his hand and pushed him to the ground.

"Fool!" Emperor Tullegolar said, "I don't need the summoning machine anymore. Thanks to Drakey, I'm past the password on the Admin Panel. All I need now is to translate the Novah into English, and I will have complete control over the boards."

Emperor Tullegolar searched the bookshelf until he found the Novah-English dictionary. He opened it eagerly, only to be faced with a picture of a fluffy kitten playing with a toothbrush. "What is this?" He tossed it aside. "All right, Garrison, where is the real book?"

"I'll... never... tell..." Garrison died.

Emperor Tullegolar started checking every book on the bookshelf. "I'll find it eventually."


Stareye dodged a firebolt. "Okay, Saunders. They're close enough. Release the fluffy turtles."

The fluffy turtles knocked Spiderwebbers to the ground as they charged past and tore into the rats.

The Lurker shuddered. "Almost makes you feel sorry for the rats, doesn't it?"

"Serves them right for not leaving their sanity at the door. Speaking of insanity, is it true that you quit my Legion of Terror?" Dintiradan asked.

"Yes. Why?"

"Then this is for you!" Dintiradan smashed Homeland into the back of the Lurker's head.

The Lurker rubbed his head. "Ow! What was that for?"

"You're not dead! If something as evil as Homeland doesn't affect you, then... never mind. I'm not going to think through the implications of that right now," Dintiradan said.

"Melee fighters, kill any rats that break through. Missile users, fire over the fluffy turtles," Stareye said, "Has anyone seen Drakefyre recently?"