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Dragon's Cry-A Comedic Tale of Comradery and Adventure

Before I begin, I want you to know of the people that will be mentioned in this story. They are all wonderful people, that I have shared many an adventures with. So don't let my portrayal of them distract you from who they all truly are. I've spent a long time (mostly procrastinating) formulating these tales when to my sadness I discovered that many of the members disbanded. It is a story of the path that four characters travel alongside their friends who just want to have a good time. I would hope that my story of this amazing guild will inspire you to join the ranks or if you read this and were a member that you have the desire to return. Now, I present to you, the wonderful, the foolish, the comedic, slightly exaggerated, courageous members of the Dragon Tears Guild!

Dragon's Cry


In legends past, there were many tales of great winged leviathans that roared plumes of flame that incinerates everything in its path. These beasts were known to all as Dragons. For all their menace, for all their brutality, and for all their horrific reputation Dragons have always been seen in the wrong light. What people never could see was the Dragon's beauty and lovingness. One such tale shows more than any other. The noble knight was dying of a wound in the chest. All he wanted was to return home. He cried for his family that he'd never see again. It was then that a great dragon landed by his frail body. The noble knight didn't even care to notice this majestic creature that now hung over him. But the Dragon took pity on him. Tears started to form in his enormous eyes and dripped down his scales until they landed onto the noble knights chest right over the wound. You see, Dragon tears have amazing healing properties. Within seconds the noble knight's wound closed and then the pain had disappeared. When he sat up to look at the Dragon it wasn't fear he felt. But it was thankfulness. The Dragon asked him what he was to do with his new found life. The noble knight answered that he would return to his family, and raise a son so he will grow big and strong and know right from wrong. It was then, that the Forgotten King, the Dragonborn known as Drake Tearian came into the world. He served in the Imperial Army for 20 years leading them to victory, saving many. After he obtained the training he needed, he became a wandering soldier. He traveled all over the world searching for knowledge that could be used to better protect it. But he never once wanted the throne or told anyone who he really was. Little to no one even recognizes his name. But still he did what he could to save those in need. But he couldn't do it alone. With a noble group they scoured the world for powerful artifacts so the wrong forces could never use them. After many years this order still exists today. This order, was came to be known as, the Dragon Tears Guild.

Warning: To people from the actual Dragon Tears guild or are characters that are in these series, this was not intended to be insulting in any way. This is purely a comedic work with my own layout of your characters that might or might not be your original idea or have the same personality. The point I'm trying to make is, I'm the writer. If you have your own ideas and plot for your characters, then write your own story. What I'm trying to say is, deal with it.

Episode 1: Men of Dragons
Part 1

Seagulls were circling in the air giving out sharp screeches. I always hated seagulls. They were always like an unnecessary sound effect in ports and harbors. Which is why when an arrow wizzed through the air and hit one in its wings the world became that much better. A young man with short brown hair, bright blue eyes, and slender face slung the bow over his shoulder along with a knapsack that held everything he owned besides the sword on his hip. He looked up at the stairs and to the city walls from the docks with increased excitement.
"I guess I finally made it," he muttered. Slowly he started walking up the stairs. "Now if my information's right, all that's left is finding a job. And I know just the place."
Daggerfall. A center point for every adventurer, hero, soldier, artisan, thief, villain, and corrupt official in the Covenant. Cobblestone paths, steps, bridges, and buildings dotted this castle town. The streets were bustling with life. The elegance of it in the bright afternoon setting was truly majesti- *Crash!* Sorry about that. Apparently a man just flew through the window of the inn. Inside was a madhouse of beer, drunken adventurers, and terrible singers (who happened to be drunken adventurers). They danced around with a mug in their hands, singing songs of valor. Occasionally a fist fight would break out resulting in the loser getting thrown out the window. These were the men and women of the Dragon Tears guild. They weren't always this riled up in fact, but the current situation demanded they drink as much as humanly possible plus extra. You see this was a sort of 'Special Occasion'.
The innkeeper shivered after he just finished giving another round of drinks to a group of men that were already far from sober. He turned towards a man in blue robes and asked, "Are you completely sure that all of this is necessary? I mean I know I hired you to protect my inn from potential thieves but did you need to bring your entire guild?"
The robed man looked up. "Listen sir. We can take no risks in the lives of our employers. Your safety comes first and in order to do that, we will have everyone on duty."
"Are you sure you didn't just invite them because I said while you were guarding me that I'd give you free drinks?" the innkeeper replied.
When he heard that the man in the robes almost looked appalled. "Sir! How dare you accuse me of taking advantage of your very generous offer? Why that very remark wounds me sir, it really does."
The innkeeper sighed. "You know you could have just said yes instead of being a smart ass about it."
With that he returned to filling orders. Slouching over the bar, the robed man finally took off his hood. He was a breton, with short black hair, partially narrow features, and had a more slim body than the rest. The only weapon he carried was a single cutlass.
"Hey there handsome what's your name?"
A pair of beautiful young women were standing behind him in long dresses. He smiled and started putting on some charm for them. "Well hey there ladies. My name is Rastafariel Dombledorfenshe-"
Before he could finish his name the woman had somehow disappeared. He laid his head on the table depressed that this happened again. That man is know as the powerful sorcerer, swashbuckler, leader of the Dragon Tears guild, Rastafariel (don't ask about his last name it's longer than the first, also note that what is written above is not his actual last name, merely based on what little I remember it to actually be). He's been born with a curse worse than most any other men. The curse of having a name so long it bores every person he meets. For the sake of the guild, everyone just calls him Ras for short. In general he's a great guy that takes the time to talk with every guild member about their problems. But if you get on his last nerve don't be anywhere within lightning bolt range.
"I don't understand. I've a got a great career going for me, I'm powerful, famed, and woman STILL forsake me. I swear I'll kill that old fart that gave me his name."
"Too bad he's already dead huh Ras?"
Ras looked over toward the deep voice to his right and saw an enormous orc dressed in full armor and a battleaxe over his back. He smiled at the sight of him.
"Rok'Nar! Hey I haven't seen you since that cult mission. How have you been? I hear you decapitated and then urinated on all of their heads!"
Rok'Nar was a tall and bulky orc even for orcs. His dark hair is braided and has piercings on his nose, lips, pretty much everywhere possible. Even his eyebrows have spikes on them. He's famed for soloing missions since he never wanted anyone with him when he did. None of the lower members have ever seen Rok'Nar in actual combat but since there were all these stories of his victims meeting gruesome deaths they never wanted to. Whenever he's around a large group of people, he really gives in to his orc stereotypes. Claiming that he'd kill all who opposed him and yells with a slur of curse words and bad grammar. One of the guild's highest ranking officers and with his sheer power, he is definitely a force to be reckoned with.
He stood proud hearing Ras praise him. "Well yeah they kind of set me off. It was close though. Had it dragged out a little longer I might have died. Wait I heard that we're getting free drinks." He prepared his voice momentarily. "Bartender! Me have best ale! He pay!" He pointed at Ras. The bartender gave him a foul look and poured him mug.
"I told you you should have brought someone with you," Ras replied. "You keep cutting it too close. Especially since you haven't fixed that-'Thing'-of yours."
Rok'Nar simply smiled back and took a swig of the ale. "Instead of talking about my problems lets talk about your problems shall we? So. I see you still aren't having any luck with the ladies huh?"
Ras moaned back into his depression. "I truly don't understand women. I know to electrocute, obliterate, burn, and disintegrate woman. But I'm clueless to how to seduce them. I blame my ridiculously long name. I mean, let's be honest, I am very powerful. I also am the leader of a huge guild right? Why is it that because of one flawed detail that they completely disregard everything else? Do you understand what I'm saying Rok?"
When he turned to look at him, Rok'Nar still sat there looking at him but the two woman that left Ras were now stroking Rok's arms and kissing his neck. Ras gave an angry look at him. Or was it more envious? Hard to say.
"No Ras," Rok'Nar replied. "I can say with complete confidence that I have no idea what you are talking about. Have you tried being an ass? I hear that works."
He continued to stare in awe as how without even trying, Rok got two beautiful woman groping at him. For a moment he felt like he was going to kill his friend. Until common sense came back. Rok'Nar was flexing his muscles and the two woman ooed and awed at everything he said and did. It was official. Ras had given up on ever trying to get a girlfriend. Let alone a wife and family. He was now trying to decide whether to sink completely into depression or continue living on understanding this seemingly obvious fact. It was then a shadow looked over him. Normally whoever it was would have been disintegrated at this point if only Ras didn't recognize this particularly large shadow.
"You know something Casper, you are terrible at sneaking around."
Behind Ras was an incredibly tall nord in leather grabs with a hood blocking his face, and daggers in their sheaths. This is Casper, by far the tallest assassin that ever existed, and the tallest in the guild overall. Despite his unusual size he (questionably) chose to follow the path of the Nightblade. Many people have advised him to choose a career towards perhaps a warrior or knight since it's not really possible for him to assassinate anyone that sees him coming within a mile radius. He says "screw em". With a carefree attitude and quick hands, Casper is also an officer of the Dragon Tears guild. Sadly not as high as Rok'Nar.
Our large assassin responded, "Ok I can imagine everyone else saying that, but how could you Ras? I thought we were friends. Besides why would you make me an officer if I wasn't living up to my full potential?"
"Apparently I have very poor decision making skills," Ras answered.
Casper started laughing sarcastically. "Which one are you talking about? The friend part or the officer part?" One look from Ras' cold stare and Casper got the message. "Well screw you too. But you know something I am good at? Woman! From what I've heard you're having some lady problems is that right?" Ras shot Rok'Nar a dirty look and Rok returned with an "I'm sorry" expression. Casper continued. "What you need to do is appear like a ghost out of thin air. It makes you look cool and mysterious. Chicks dig that. If they see you coming or you wait for them you might as well not try at all. Allow me to demonstrate."
Walking away from the bar, Ras and Rok'Nar watched wondering what exactly was going to happen. Casper crouched down so he was now average height and tried sneaking around the party. He spotted two women standing next to a support beam. Targets acquired. When he managed to push and shove his way to the opposite side of the beam he stood up straight and hid from the women. Peering around the edge he was able to sneak a look at them. Now, this was a crucial detail he overlooked. These women were shorter than average guys and were wearing particularly revealing dresses. Not to mention Casper's extreme height compariosn. So when he snuck a look at them you could say he got a "good view". Naturally there would be a problem when the woman facing him stopped giggling at what her friend said long enough to see him. And, naturally, she got the wrong idea.
"Hey you perv! Would you mind explaining to us what you're doing sneaking a peek at me and my friend?" she exclaimed.
Casper panicked trying to think of something to say. "No no! It's not what you think! I wouldn't do that. Uh-uh-I don't mean that they DON'T look nice but-um."
Of course being a guy he managed to say all the wrong things. This plus the fact that there were two angry women resulted in a nasty double kick to the jewels. He collapsed onto the wooden floor crossing his legs and guarding them from further harm. You could see his soul starting to creep out and fly away.
"Stay away from us you creep!"
They didn't have to worry about that. In his condition he wasn't going anywhere. Ras and Rok'Nar laughed hysterically seeing the poor shape of their friend having talked so boldly before his imminent demise. It was hard to say whether he was alive at this point. But when he finally did speak it wasn't any lower than a squeal as he said, "Killlllll meeee."
Ras laughed, "Haha! I might not be any good at picking up women, but at least I don't get beaten the crap out of whenever I try."
As Casper was laying on the floor in pain waiting for a clean death, the door swung open smacking him in the face and three bandits wearing masks ran in.
"Haaaa! This is a robbery by the Red Rook bandits! Unless you want to die I suggest that you all..." The entire inn fell silent. Even the bandits were quiet. One of them leaned over towards the one in the middle.
"Um boss. Are you sure that this is the inn you were talking about?"
"You are positive?"
"This is the inn we were supposed to rob?"
"100% sure."
"Then why are we surrounded?"
The room stayed silent. The middle bandit looked all around the room checking out all the warriors, sorcerers, and assassins. He finally looked straight forward and decided they were screwed.
"Well ***."
"Get em boys!" a warrior shouted. They all charged them at once. Pushing and shoving to see who would get the kill. The bandits tried running away but were cramped at the door. Unfortunately for our dear friend Casper, in order to get to them, most everyone was stepping on him without realizing he was there. This furthered the distance his soul traveled from him. Dragging the bandits back into the inn, instead of using their weapons, they pummeled them with their fists. The bandits were hollering in pain and screeching, "This was all your idea!" Now people were trying to get to the center of the fight and continued to step on poor Casper. Ras and Rok'Nar didn't even bother getting into the fight and watched drinking a mug of ale.
Meanwhile the innkeeper just stared in awe at the rowdy bunch.
He nudged the guildmaster and whispered, "Um I think they've been beaten into submission. Do they really need to keep at it?"
"Well if you feel like telling them that go ahead," Ras gestured towards the crowd. The innkeeper shied away from going anywhere near the behemoths.
Rok'Nar got off his chair and stretched his arms. "Relax I got this." Walking to the group he unsheathed his battleaxe and yelled, "Move or heads will roll!"
It is amazing how fast everyone cleared away from the bandits. Their faces and bodies were beaten, bruised, and bleeding. Obvious to say they would never try anything like this again. Resting his axe on his shoulder, Rok'Nar looked back and smiled at Ras. Ras looked at him thinking Show off and headed towards the half dead bandits. Leaning down he summoned several pairs of handcuffs and cuffed all three of them. He stood back up and looked around the room.
"Ashure! Where are you? Take these gentleman to the stockades. I don't think they will cause any trouble for the remainder of their time in this world." When no one answered Ras looked around and asked again. "Ashure! Get over here and turn them in! You're starting to make me look bad."
No one said anything. Until a voice said, "Pass." That ticked Ras to an extreme.
"Pass? You can't 'Pass'. I'm the guildmaster. You follow my orders and you like them. You're not even a Tear yet. You can't just ignore an order like that."
"I'm not you're errand boy Ras," the emotionless voice went again. "Get some newbie to do it. I have no interest in doing your chores today. I have other things on my mind."
Everyone looked at the a man in a chair laying on the wooden table with his eyes closed. Ashure Glory, lower ranking member of the Dragon Tears guild. For reasons the reader is unaware he is currently unmotivated to do anything and won't do anything unless it suits his interests. Getting him to do a mission is a mission in its own right at this point. He has wavy red hair, a slightly tougher than average build but by no means a huge lug, and a slightly round face with thin layers of facial hair covering it. With a greatsword on his back and wearing heavy plated armor, Ashure continued to lay their with his head buried in his arms. Almost every conversation he has with Ras gets Ras ticked off, which he slightly does on purpose.
Even though he wasn't nearly in the mood to do a mission, at this exact moment he was going to want change his mind. Ras summoned a spear of dark crystal like rocks and sent it flying towards Ashure's head. It landed only inches from his skull to the right, making a large hole in the wall. Opening his silvery grey eyes, Ashure looked at the dark spear and then looked back at Ras.
"You missed."
Ras grew even more furious and concentrated a ball of lightning in his hands. "Just do the damn mission or next time I won't miss!"
Ashure sighed and got out of his chair. He unsheathed his sword and pointed it at the bandits. "Up and at em worms." With a burst of energy they leaped up off the ground and begged him not to kill them. "Oh wow you guys are still alive," he said nonchalantly. "Let's go."
He kicked one and they got the idea. As soon as they all went outside the door Ras' anger slowly disappeared along with the lighting bolt in his hand. The room started to fill up with chatter and Ras remembered that now the mission was technically over. Walking over towards the innkeeper he held out his hand.
"All right we completed your request. The bandits that were going to rob you have been apprehended and are now being turned in to the authorities. Now as I recall, the job was worth 200 gold. So I say this in politest way possible, pay up."
You could tell something was wrong when the innkeeper gave the most artificial smile in existence.
"Oh you're right!" he said sarcastically. "But wait. From the time you were here, I have two broken windows, three broken chairs, a broken table, and a hole in the wall. And guess how much it costs to repair it?"
Ras didn't enjoy the sarcasm. "50 gold?"
"Wrong," the innkeeper replied. "200 gold exactly. So not counting all my alcohol that you band of ruffians drank, that will pay for exactly everything your guild has broken."
"You know you could have just said we aren't getting paid instead of being a smart ass about it," Ras complained.
"What?!" he exclaimed. "Where have I heard this before? You know there is this special concept that really fits this scenario. I believe it's called karma!" His expression quickly changed to anger. "Now get out of my inn!"
Within seconds the entire guild flooded out with disappointed looks, and more than slightly hungover. Together Ras and Rok'Nar lifted their half conscious Caper over their shoulders. There was a moment of happiness for the innkeeper. Until he looked at the inside of his inn and realized there was a serious problem.
"Now how am I gonna fix this?"

All three bandits never stopped complaining as Ashure made them march towards the Lieutenant. Whenever they started thinking about running, they looked back to see Ashure's sword unsheathed and laying against his shoulder. It was in their best interest not to rebel against their captor. All Ashure was thinking about was how much he couldn't wait until he finished this little errand. This wasn't his kind of mission even if it was a simple one. In fact it was partially because it was so easy that he didn't like doing it. How was he supposed to climb up the social ladder in the guild by babysitting a few bandits? What ever. Add it onto the list of things for him to think about today.
They were now climbing up the stone path under an arch where the Daggerfall Keep was now in sight. Its giant stone structure and prominence overlooked the entire countryside giving the powerful appearance that of the most grand castle. The locals were very proud of their town that sat right under the great keep. Although Ashure wasn't as interested in it as much as when he first came to Daggerfall. Its effect of grandeur quickly wore off on him.
In front of him, a group of guards approached and asked about the three in cuffs.
"Well these three tried robbing the inn not too long ago," was Ashure's reply. "Make sure you put them in a deep hole in your dungeon."
"Please no!" cried one of the bandits. "Don't put us in the dungeons. At least let us be able to see the sun."
"Shut up," Ashure moaned hitting him upside the head with his gauntlet. "I already have a migraine from all your complaining on the way here. Don't make it any worse." He returned his gaze to the guards. "So are we done here or do I have to go through some procedural crap?"
"That won't be necessary."
A woman clad in armor with a sword on her hip and shield over her back walked from behind the guards who parted to let her through. She looked at the bandits and then at Ashure. Knowing he was telling the truth she nodded to her guards and they took them. They went out crying and screaming but of course they didn't stand a chance against the well armed military troops. The woman told the rest to leave her. That left the two alone.
"Did I do something wrong?" Ashure asked annoyed.
"No not at all," she answered. "You are with the Dragon Tears are you not?"
"Not the most informed official are you? What's it to you? From that shiny armor and emblem on your chest I'd have to say you're a Captain. Now, Captain, tell me what it is you'd like to discuss?"
She looked at him impressed. "You seem very familiar with the military. Were you a soldier?"
Ashure laughed. "Anything but. Now, what is it you want?"
She turned towards the railing overlooking the town square. "There's a job that I want to give to the Dragon Tears guild. Someone's been murdered recently and we want to know why. As you probably know, murder is something the Guard cannot overlook. Or else we'll have a panic on our hands. Do you accept?" She presented him a roll of paper. Ashure took it and examined it. Without a doubt, this was an official case. He rolled it back up.
"I'll take it to an officer and then they'll decide who to send. But don't expect a job without a reward." He started walking away.
"Oh there will be a reward," she assured him.
Ashure turned to face her while walking backwards. "I never got your name."
"No you did not," she replied.
She never gave him her name. They left with this mutual understanding of each other. Neither truly trusting the other. What Ashure understood was she was a high ranking official that could probably take him out anytime she wanted to. Also for some reason she didn't want this getting out about either the murdered or the murderer. This was a very personal job, either for her, the guard, or some other official. The Captain knew that he had some knowledge about the army for whatever reason. To her this could mean he left the army or might have been at arms against it. Then again someone he knew could have been in the army or he just could have a basic understanding of the chain of command. For some reason she didn't think it was the last one.
The Captain signaled over to a guard that quickly hustled over to her.
"What is it Captain?"
"Who was that man?" she asked looking to where Ashure once stood. He shrugged.
"Oh that was Ashure Glory!" another guard yelled to them, hearing their conversation. "He's an up and comer. Been getting a reputation for monster hunting. A lot of people say he'll become a well known member of the Dragon Tears guild someday." They both stared at him. "What? I like reading up on all the guilds. Why? Does something bother you Captain?"
Lost in thought, she didn't look back to face the guard, until something clicked. "Silver eyes." She looked back at the guard. "I want someone looking up this, Ashure Glory. I want city records, birth certificates, past journeys. I want to know where he sleeps, where he eats, where he says is the best vacation spots. I want to know everything about him."
The guard looked at her almost worried. "What for Captain?"
"Just a hunch. But I don't want to have overlooked something."
"We're going to need more than that Captain."
Her look became stone cold. "My job is to know about everyone and everything that enters and leaves Daggerfall. And not once have I ever heard of an Ashure Glory."
  • AshureGlory
    Comments and feedback would be very helpful so I know what people like and what needs to be fixed, I'll post the last 3 parts of episode 1 once every other week, hope you enjoy! :)
  • AshureGlory
    Episode 1 Part 2

    The traveler opened the door to the inn. It was a complete mess. He stared wondering what the heck happened here. When he asked someone in town where he might find the Dragon Tears guild they suggested he try the inn. For a moment he wondered if they really were here. Unless they came here to kill someone or were the ones killed he doubted it. Next to a bunch of tables, one broken, a man was sweeping up the pieces.
    "Hey there sir," he said to get innkeeper's attention. "Would you happen to know if the Dragon Tears guild was here recently? I'm looking for them and someone told me that I could find them h-"
    At the first mention of the Dragon Tears guild the innkeeper stood up and gave this random stranger a piece of his mind. "The Dragon Tears? Ha! Let me tell you something about the Dragon Tears guild. They're a bunch of miscreants and booze brained mercenaries that I'd report to the Guard in a heartbeat. The Dragon Tears. Ha! If they weren't so good at what they did they'd all be in the stockades by now. Plus our king has got a soft spot for guilds. Thinks of them heroes. Ha! If they're heroes then for divines' sake I'm an emperor."
    The traveler was merely left there for a few moments to wait if this rant would continue or not. "What in Oblivion did they do to make you hate them so much?"
    There was large bang when the door flew open. So much that it actually flew off its hinges. In ran Ashure who seemed to be in a hurry when he yelled, "Hey Ras! The Lion's Guard just gave us a mission about a mur-" It took him a second to realize that the only people there was a random traveler and the innkeeper who for some apparent reason was crying.
    "My door!" he wailed. He pointed at Ashure angrily. "You're paying for that! Just another thing your stupid guild broke in my inn."
    The traveler's ears pricked up. "Guild? You wouldn't happen to be a member of the Dragon Tears guild would you?"
    "Wow twice in one day." Ashure commented. "Yeah I'm a member. Why do you have a job you want us to do too?"
    He pointed to the innkeeper. "He said that the Dragon Tears were a bunch of booze brained mercenaries. Is that true?"
    It suddenly grew very tense. The innkeeper's teeth were chattering in fear. He knew what the guild was capable of and didn't know how they take insults. Why did you have to say that? the innkeeper thought to himself. Instead of retaliating in anger, Ashure laughed. The traveler and the innkeeper were dumbstruck.
    Ashure replied, "Don't get me wrong we ARE by definition mercenaries. But we're only mercenaries half the time though. The guild likes to think of themselves as scholars. But a better way of putting it would be 'collectors of rare and valuable artifacts and knowledge'."
    "Oh so like an archaeologist!" he said cheerfully.
    Ashure chuckled. “Graverobbers is closer but yeah you get the idea."
    The traveler grinned. "I was hoping to join if you wouldn't mind. Is there a certain thing I need to do to get in or?..."
    "Ohhhhh. So you want to join the guild huh? Well entering is a long, tiring process. If you don't have the courage to stare death in the face then leave now. Otherwise you're just a waste of time. Do you accept?"
    Without hesitating he answered, "Yes."
    Confused Ashure looked to the left and right before looking back at him. "Seriously?"
    "Just like that?"
    "You're not scared of whole 'Stare death in the face' thing?"
    Ashure looked impressed. "Congratulations. You are now here by a member of the Dragon Tears guild. Well. Not technically yet. We need an officer to accept you in for you to be an 'official' member. But other than that, yeah."
    His face lit up with excitement that he made it. Although he was slightly disappointed it was that easy. But whatever. All that mattered was that he got in. Ashure motioned him to calm down before he started doing a happy dance and drew attention. Then Ashure remembered something.
    "Oh yeah what's your name kid?" He asked. The traveler seemed to ponder this in deep thought. After waiting a minute for an answer Ashure said, "You know if you want you can go by an alias. Lots of people do that."
    Hearing this, the traveler stared at him confidently and replied, "Uriu. You can call me Uriu."
    "Ok Uriu. Name's Ashure. For now we need to find out where everyone went so we can get an officer to accept you in."
    "You're saying you don't know where they are?" Uriu asked confused.
    "Yeah well the guild travels so much it's hard to find out who's where. From last I knew there are only three people not on a mission that can invite you in. And the two that I thought were here have gone. So we have to find the third. This works out for me anyways because we got a mission request that I have to turn in anyways."
    "So where can we find him?"
    Ashure grinned. "I think I might have an idea."
    The innkeeper was still next to Uriu as this conversation continued. Obviously he was still mad about the whole door thing, and was even more mad that Ashure completely ignored him. "So when are you paying for my door?" he abruptly interrupted.
    As soon as he said it Ashure pulled out a slip of paper that had IOU written on it. "You can turn this into the guild and they'll pay for the expense of your door. " He turned towards Uriu and said, "Alright let's go!"
    "You have those IOUs on hand?" Uriu asked curiously.
    "Yeaaaaah. ... We break a lot of stuff."
    When they rushed out the doorway the innkeeper looked at the slip of paper. He realized while holding it that something was written on the back. Turning it over he was enraged. On the backside read 'Just Kidding!' This followed with a poorly drawn cartoon of a man sticking his tongue out while giving the bird. The paper was quickly crumpled in his hands as he clenched his teeth before releasing a flowing stream of curse words and insults towards the Dragon Tears guild. Too much to be written in one part of an episode.
    The pair ran into the middle of town before Ashure stopped suddenly. Uriu wasn't aware of the sudden stop until he accidentally ran over Ashure. They were both laying on the ground moaning.
    "Watch where you're going!" Ashure exclaimed.
    "Me? You're the one that stopped out of the blue," Uriu came back. "Why did you stop anyway?"
    Sitting up Ashure looked through his pack. Eventually he pulled out a string, a stick, and a dead fish. At this moment several things went through Uriu's mind. For one, why the heck does he have all of this stuff? Ok I can understand a fish, might eat it later when he's traveling. Then a string, ehhh ok, might have some multiple purposes. Nothing terribly needed but just maybe. Now a stick... Who carries a stick around with them? You mean those little things you randomly find on the ground when walking by trees? It's not exactly necessary to carry one around with you when there's an infinite amount you can find EVERYWHERE! (my unsincerest apologies to all mages, sorcerers, and Gandalf)
    Despite his inner thoughts he allowed Ashure to continue what he was doing. First thing he did was take the fish and summoned a ball of holy fire in his hand that he used to cook the fish until it was tender and well done. Next he tied the tail of the fish to the end of the stick using the string. Bending down he looked at the ground until he found a crack in the cobblestone street and wedged the stick in there so it stood up holding the fish. The stick was barely tall enough so the fish wasn't touching the ground. Uriu knelt down to examine Ashure's contraption. Before he could ask what the point of this was, he saw Ashure motioning him to follow him behind a stone railing where he crouched so you could barely see him. Uriu felt more or less like an idiot hiding behind this less than perfect cover for reasons he didn't understand.
    "Why are we hiding here?" he asked Ashure quietly. "And why did you cook a fish on a stick and put in the middle of the street?"
    "Well if we can't find an officer, logic dictates we make the officer find us," Ashure answered.
    Uriu thought about what he said and tried to find a connection between that and their current situation. "Oh wait is this like some sort of secret signal that your guild uses to contact each other?"
    Before replying Ashure smiled. "You could say it's something like that."
    They sat there for what seemed like hours. In reality it was maybe 20 minutes. Uriu was growing tired and almost fell asleep. That was until he heard the sound of the stick coming out of the stone. He started nudging Ashure who had fallen asleep. When he woke up they looked to see what had happened to the fish. The sound of someone chomping and chewing at it was extremely loud. What was there was a feline creature sitting over the fish wearing dark leather clothes and a hood. It took a few minutes for him to realizing that he was being watched. When he did he slowly turned around showing a cat-like face, with pitch black fur, whose cheeks bulged from still having a full mouth of food. He stared at Ashure and Uriu.
    "Tell no one."
    This was the khajiit known as Za'Kiro. He is, believe it or not, one of the highest ranking officers in the Dragon Tears like Rok'Nar. Za'Kiro is the guild's expert thief. You could say he's a (no... NO!...DON'T YOU DARE!) cat burglar (NOOOO! PUUUUUUNS! Gdngit me). He was always sent on missions to 'acquire' certain items that found their way into the wrong hands. Though don't think this makes him unequipped for combat. Za'Kiro is an expert with his daggers. Although he doesn't like to get his hands (paws?) dirty he will on occasion go on assassination missions. He is known for his slick nature and sneakiness in the guild. His weakness, deliciously cooked fish.
    "Kiro!" Ashure exclaimed.
    "It's Za'Kiro!" the Khajiit exclaimed. "ZA'KIRO! Why haven't you yet understood this after constantly telling you it's Za'Kiro?"
    "It's not a matter of me not understanding, it's just that I ignore you." He looked back at Uriu and realized what he needed to do. "Oh yeah. Za'Kiro, this is Uriu. He says that he wants to join the Dragon Tears. We need you to accept him."
    Za'Kiro stared at Uriu and with squinting eyes looked him up and down for any potential. Looking back up he asked, "Did you do the 'Stare death in the face' thing?"
    "Yep," Ashure answered. "He didn't so much as hesitate when answering. If I don't say so myself, this kid seems like he was meant to join the Dragon Tears."
    Again Za'Kiro faced Uriu looking him up and down. He nodded. "Uriu was it? Well fine. As one of the Seven, Za'Kiro accepts you into the guild. Though don't get too excited. You're still an initiate. Until you pass your initiation tests you have yet to be a member and have very limited rights in the guild. But until then, welcome to the Dragon Tears."
    Again Uriu seemed to be giving the puppy dog eyes. He felt such a sense of accomplishment. Ashure and Za'Kiro looked at him with funny faces. When they looked at each other they chuckled at his enthusiasm.
    As Uriu started doing his victory dance Ashure walked to Za'Kiro and pulled out the roll of paper. "A Captain of Lion's Guard gave us a mission request. She said someone got murdered recently and wanted us to take care of it."
    He took it and carefully with his sharp claws unrolled the paper. After finishing reading the request he handed it back to Ashure.
    "Well everyone's very busy at the moment and Za'Kiro has to take a cat nap. Za'Kiro thinks you and the initiate should take this as your first assignment as a team no?"
    "W-W-What?" Ashure stammered.
    Za'Kiro laughed at his response. "Come now. Ashure, everyone knows how you've been longing to lead a team. Consider this as your starter. Everyone needs a place to start. Now now, run along. The sun has yet to set and Za'Kiro wants you two to start on this immediately."
    Before Ashure could argue back he stopped. Sincerely he responded, "Thanks Kiro. Stay sharp alright?."
    "You too friend. And it's Za'Kiro!"
    The khajiit slipped into the shadows without another word. Turning back around he could see Uriu was still cheering and dancing around. Putting on his serious face, Ashure walked back to Uriu who was now singing for no apparent reason.
    "Alright you can stop that now," he said as seriously as he could. Uriu suddenly stopped and stared back at Ashure before standing straighter. "From this day forth, we will be fighting alongside each other as a team, and I as team leader. Now to better understand each other, how do you fight? From the sword and bow you seem like a ranger type to me. But how do you prefer to fight?"
    Uriu smiled and responded, "Well I prefer to fire arrows at a good position. But that doesn't mean I can't use a sword if the situation demands it. So in general I'm fine with either."
    "Alright then I can work with that," Ashure commented, thinking how best to utilize Uriu's abilities. "Our first mission is to find out about this man that was murdered. The request doesn't say how he was killed, which is a pain, but the request came with a list he had on him when he died. I think it might be best for us to split up and ask the people that will most likely have each of the items. You can go to the tailoring shop and ask for a cloak with a crescent emblem. Meanwhile I'll ask these shop owners at the market square. Now let's g-"
    When Ashure looked up from the paper, Uriu had already disappeared. It slightly ticked him off that he had already left without Ashure telling him to but he didn't have time to chase him down and decided to just start heading to the market square.
    "Next time I see that kid I'm gonna make sure he learns to respect his commanding officer and listen to what people say to him before leaving." He thought for a moment. "Hey why does this sound like someone I know? Ah whatever. I'll think about it after we're finished with this mission."
    Uriu walked up the wooden steps, each one creaking as his weight shifted. Opening the wooden door revealed an almost empty atmosphere. Besides the afternoon sunlight emanating through the windows, the only other form of light came from the fireplace to his left. In front of him stood a man with long brown hair, writing on a piece of parchment with his quill. He could only assume this was the tailor.
    "Excuse me sir," Uriu asked. "I want to make an order. Would you happen to have a cloak with a crescent emblem on it? I would very much like one."
    The tailor returned him a strange look. "I'm sorry. We don't sell those. The crescent moon is the heraldry of the Casimir family. As you know they are the rulers of Daggerfall."
    Not responding immediately, Uriu looked around the room. He acted calm and ***. Admiring the random bits and bobs he made his way to the fireplace. Standing there Uriu held his hands behind his back.
    Without turning back Uriu exclaimed, "Then why did a dead man write this order on a list?" The tailor had a fearful look on his face.
    "Dead? Any chance he had a dog? The man's name's Roy. I'm sad but not surprised. If you do find out who killed him, there's without a doubt you'll be well paid. But I won't be surprised if you also die."
    Uriu turned around to face him. "What do you know about Roy? Were you friends? I want to know everything."
    "Roy was a good man," he said straightening up. "A loyal man to Daggerfall. People trusted him. Including me. I liked Roy. He took care of all the merchants around here. In exchange we would help him. If ever I heard something suspicious I'd tell him and Roy made sure the right people were informed."
    Uriu nodded as he listened to every word the tailor said. With a sorrowful look, he bowed before the tailor and said, "He sounds like he was good man. I thank you for your time."
    Leaving the shop he looked back towards the market. Whatever this was about, he knew it had something to do with the royal family. And that couldn't be good.
    Meanwhile down at the market square Ashure was asking about 'three blood oranges' and the 'black roses with thorns'. The first person he went to was a grocer. When he asked, the grocer replied shakily, "L-look I don't want any trouble. That phrase only means one thing. Someone is going to die." Before he could ask anymore the grocer left in a hurry and said no more.
    Next Ashure went to the florist. When he asked her about the roses she also replied, "I've only heard whispers. Things about dark nature magic. You're with Roy aren't you? This is exactly the thing Roy would be interested in."
    There was little to nothing else needed to be said. He walked away from the market when he heard a loud voice shouting towards him. Turning around Ashure saw Uriu running at him. Slowing down he panted when he finally reached his armored ally.
    "Hey Ashure. I found something interesting at the Tailoring Shop. Apparently our man Roy worked for the Lion's Guard. He was a sort of, spy, keeping an eye on the merchants and had them listen for anything strange. Someone asked about these items on the list and he looked into it. Apparently they'd kill for it too. The item I asked him about was a symbol of the Royal family. What about you? What did you dig up?"
    Hearing this, Ashure pondered as he tried to connect the dots. Then what struck him was terrifying. "Someone's supposed to die," Ashure answered. "Possibly by dark nature magic. An interesting combination of items don't you think? A phrase that means someone is going to die. A black rose, rumored to have something to do with dark nature magic, and finally, a robe with the symbol of the royal family. One that, perhaps, a guard would wear? You know what this means don't you?"
    Uriu's eyes widened realizing what he meant. "You don't mean someone is aiming for the crown?"
    To this Ashure stared him straight in the eye and nodded. "Then I guess we'll have to take them down before they do. The problem is we don't know who 'they' are. The Captain needs to hear about this. We'll inform them on what we have found and then they can possibly give us a lead. Or better yet they can deal with the rest. No time to waste. Come on let's go."
    They ran as fast as they could. There was no time to waste. Climbing up the stone hill, they looked for the Captain, assuming she was still there. Seeing them causing quite a scene, an officer of high ranking quickly came over to try and shut them up since he already had two kids that wouldn’t and a wife who was bearing a third. He was having a bad day.
    "Um. Hello there! Can I help you at all?"
    "We have information regarding Roy," Ashure panted.
    "Roy?" the man asked curiously. "Please, tell me everything."
    "We believe the last case Roy was on had something to do with the royal family. After further investigation we realized that someone plans to assassinate them with dark nature magic."
    The officer's face looked stunned. He quickly looked at the note. "Molag's Ball! You're absolutely right. Someone is trying to assassinate King Casimir!"
    Note to readers. Throughout the remainder of this series, you will continue to hear the phrase 'Molag's Ball'. In short, this is a brief definition of the phrase. First use, in a scenario of complete shock and/or amazement. Ex: "Molag's Ball! Someone stole my Playelf Magazine!" Second use, when describing your utter hatred for Molag Bal, and how you will either beat the crap out of him or his Daedric army. Ex: "Let's kick Molag's Ball!" Though mostly it’s just that first one. Now that you are firmly educated in this made up phrase, please continue reading. (And yes we understand this phrase refers that he only has one ***)
    Ashure grabbed the guard by the shoulders. "Now make sure that the royal family is safe! Double the guards, get them out of the city, anything! We don't know when they will attack so right now we need more information on who 'they' are. Is there anyone who might be able to help us?"
    The guard placed his hand over his chin and thought. Finally something came to mind. "There is one. Grenna gra-Kush. She stays at the inn. Whatever Roy was onto, she'll know what to do."
    As Ashure started running, Uriu thanked the knight and then chased after him.
    The guard himself had business to do now as well. “I must warn the royal family! The kids are going to love this story.”
    Returning to where they first met, Ashure and Uriu ran through the doorless doorway. You could imagine the innkeeper's panic seeing Ashure return. Quickly he walked out from around the bar to stop them from destroying anything else.
    "Get out!" he yelled. Ashure had completely forgotten about the innkeeper and how he had previously, artistically, gave him the finger. "I don't want you and your guild to ever walk inside this inn again! Do you have any idea how much damage you caused the last time you came here? Why I ought to-"
    Before he could throw them out, Uriu hit him with the butt of his sword on his forehead. The innkeeper collapsed onto the ground knocked out cold. Ashure looked at Uriu in shock at what he'd done. Obviously Uriu felt proud. But sadly there was no time to gloat on his beating of a poor, defenseless, stranger. He really was becoming a member of the Dragon Tears afterall.
    Grenna was a female orc standing by the fireplace. She drank in her traveler's clothes as the bard sung about Daggerfall and slightly exaggerated historical events. Ashure was hesitant to approach the possibly drunk orc. He knew from experience with Rok'Nar that that was one of the many things you should never do with orcs. He advised Uriu to do the same. Exhausted and bored, Uriu approached her.
    "Hello there. Would you by any chance be Grenna gra-Kush?" he asked.
    She wasn't exactly in the mood. "I'm busy! Can't you see I'm drinking?"
    Ashure hit him upside the head for ignoring him. Walking forward Ashure proclaimed, "A man from the Lion's Guard sent us. We need to find out who's behind an assassination plot that Roy was investigating."
    She tensed, but anger left her eyes as she listened. "What? Molag's Ball, Roy really poked the giant, man eating, slimy serpent this time. And one of them is right up stairs. A man named Leveque. If you could get him to talk we could quite possibly find out who the killer is."
    "We can handle that!" Uriu exclaimed and ran up the stairs.
    "Wait dang it!" Ashure yelled annoyed. “She didn’t even tell us why or give any proof! I don’t want you beating the crap out of two strangers in one day.” How was he ever going to deal with this kid?
    Sprinting up the stairs, Uriu saw Leveque alone in a room across the hall. "Hey!" he yelled. Leveque panicked and ran up a smaller flight of stairs.
    "Help!" Leveque squealed.
    Ignoring his cry Uriu chased up after him. There was nowhere left for him to run. Ashure climbed up the stairs and saw Uriu running after Leveque. Then he thought he saw a shadow move. His eyes widened.
    "Uriu behind you!" Out of the shadows became an assassin wielding daggers, prepared to strike. Before he could, Ashure summoned a ball of bright flame and thrust it forward, knocking back the assassin. Still dazed, he couldn't get up, and Uriu took the initiative. Quickly pulling out his bow and an arrow from his quiver, he carefully aimed and shot the assassin in the leg so he couldn't move. Despite this, the assassin still made an effort to get up without crying out in pain. Ashure ran forward with his blade still in its sheathe, and swung his sword in an uppercut. It nailed the assassin right in the head, flinging him straight through the doors that Leveque had previously ran from. Without so much as a twitch, the assassin laid on the ground unconscious, and the battle was over. No cheesy one liners, no ridiculous fight scene.
    They both stood above a cowering Leveque. He shacked in the corner afraid of what they would do with him. "You don't think I had anything to do with that do you?” He gestured towards the poor excuse for an assassin. “I swear it wasn't me!"
    "Stop complaining," Ashure said annoyed. "Now spill it out. I already have a migraine from three nimrods so whining is only going to make it worse. What do you know about the people who killed Roy?"
    He did his best to stop shaking so much. "All I did was draw plans for them. I didn't think anyone was going to die for it. I swear I had no idea!"
    "Who are they?" Uriu asked.
    "You mean you don't know? They're the Red Rook bandits. They paid very well for a sewer plan."
    "What sewers?"
    "The ones under Daggerfall Keep. Please. Don't kill me."
    Uriu drew his bow aiming straight for his eyes. But Ashure halted him. "He won't pose a threat. There's no need to kill him. Remember this Uriu. Whenever you're with me, death is a last resort you hear?"
    Hesitantly Uriu relaxed his bow and slung it back over his shoulder. He looked at Ashure as he walked away from Leveque. No matter what events transpired, he still couldn't get even the slightest understanding of Ashure. When they first met he seemed like a fun guy. Then he became serious. Then annoyed. After that he became a well trained warrior. And now he's merciful? How could someone be so complex? Uriu didn't bother asking.
    When they exited the inn Uriu stated, "Ok, we know who the culprit is, what's our next move? We still don't know where they are and when they'll strike. Any ideas?"
    Ashure grinned. "Luckily for you, I happen to know a few people that could tell us all we need."
    After a long walk, and after talking to a few guards, Ashure and Uriu were under Daggerfall Keep in the dark dungeons. It was filthy, rats scurried about every which way, and the only light was from a few far spaced torches. Ashure kicked one cell door in particularly.
    "What! What! What do you want?"
    The cell was inhabited by the three bandits Ashure had turned in only hours ago. Their wounds and bruises from the earlier fight had begun to swollen. You could only imagine the looks on their faces when they saw Ashure had returned. They scurried as far back from the door as possible.
    "W-w-why are you here?" one of them asked. "Please don't beat the crap out of us."
    "Well well, if it isn't my favorite band of misfits," Ashure said leaning forward to get closer up to the cell door. "Me and my friend here want to ask you a few questions. Failure to comply means execution by yours truly. Now, what do you know about the recent activities of your Red Rook bandits?"
    "W-we-we-we don't know anything," he stuttered. "They left us for dead. After being order to rob that inn they wouldn't tell us anything else."
    Ashure looked at the ground unsatisfied. He stepped back and Uriu took a step forward. "That's not what we want to hear guys. Not at all. What we do want to know, is your plans on the assassination of King Casimir."
    They looked at each other before answering. "They're actually going to do that? I mean, there were rumors. But us lower on the ladder weren't given the full details. If they are actually going through with that then they're going to do it soon. I give you guys two days at the most."
    They let this settle in. Finally Ashure and Uriu started to chuckle. The bandits didn't understand what was going on and they didn't like it. Again Ashure and Uriu switched places. Slowly Ashure unsheathed his greatsword. They started to get even more scared. He waved his sword from right to left and back again while hitting each of the bars on the door.
    Continuing this, Ashure asked, "Where are your bandits located?" It sounded like a hiss coming out of his voice.
    One of the bandits stood up and looked questionably at Ashure. "What?"
    Without warning, Ashure pulled his sword back and thrust it through the door in one quick move. "Answer me!" It barely couldn't reach it's target, and the three ducked back in their corner crying aloud and begging him to spare them. Their whines persisted for minutes as tears started rolling out of their eyes like rivers. The sword retreated from the door slowly, making a scraping sound against the metal.
    Finally all three of them started screaming, " Ilessan Tower! They're in Ilessan Tower!"
    Ashure sheathed his weapon satisfied. "Let's go." They left the crying bandits to their continued torment in the dungeons. Closing the door behind them as they left the prison, they started laughing hysterically. Ashure high fived Uriu and they started talking about what had just happened.
    "Did you see their faces?! I told you scare tactics would work," Uriu laughed.
    "Oooh yeah. I didn't think I was THAT scary. I mean I did turn it up a bit but wow. You carried yourself pretty well yourself."
    Uriu smiled. "Why thank you." His laughing started to cease and everything returned to normal. "So. Now I'm guessing we go to this Ilessan Tower place and take care of the bandits right?"
    Ashure leaned back against the wall of the building with his arms crossed. "Don't be so foolish.” It was amazing how quickly his tone had changed. “This is the home of the Red Rook Bandits. It'll take a heck of a lot more manpower to clear it out than just you and me." He started to grin. "I guess we'll need to call 'them'. He'd kill me if he found out I tried pulling something like this off without him anyways. Tell me Uriu. Would you like to see our guild headquarters?"
  • AshureGlory
    Episode 1 Part 3

    Ashure led Uriu to the Wayshrine at the north most section of the city. It had four stone pillars with a little roof and a sort of brazier with blue flames in the center. Uriu stared at it in awe. He'd heard of these but never before has he seen one. Looking back up to Ashure, he saw his hand hovering over it.
    "This will take us to the guildhall," Ashure said. "All you have to do is close your eyes and think of a place, if you have to, say it, and then you'll be teleported to where ever that is. But since you've never been there before I'm going to have to take you there myself."
    Uriu stared in amazement about all that was happening in the short time since he joined. He just realized something when Ashure was explaining this mode of transportation. "Wait if you had this and knew where the guildhall was then why didn't we just use this first to find an officer?"
    Ashure shushed him immediately. It's annoying when people argue with realism and common sense in stories. If you always did the realistic thing and took the easy way then there wouldn't be much of a story now would there?
    Frustrated, Uriu asked, "So where are we going?"
    Grinning widely Ashure grabbed Uriu's hand and held it over the brazier as he announced, "Fort Dragonclaw!"
    Hearing this Uriu's eyes widened. "But wait that's in-"
    An astral magic circled them. Constellations appeared as the spell began to teleport them. A glitch appeared, though only for a moment. That moment Ashure's face filled with worry as he looked back to Uriu. His eyes were blank, staring at images playing through his mind.
    "Uriu!" Ashure yelled to get his attention. He still didn't respond. Before Ashure could do anything, their entire bodies started to dissolve into light, and they disappeared. To where, not even the Eight knew.
    When they reappeared, the two crashed and skidded on an old, gigantic, stone bridge. Yet it was only half of a bridge, the other half was completely destroyed. Ashure gave out numerous amount of moans and curses. Uriu gritted his teeth from the less than perfect landing for his first time fast-traveling. He was still laying on the ground by the time that Ashure was able to sit up and stretch his arms and legs. When he looked up he saw what had haunted him for the past few years. With a look of despair, Uriu fell to his knees and looked aimlessly in front of him past where the bridge had abruptly ended. Without realizing that Uriu was going through a dramatic scene, Ashure started yelling things like 'What the heck were you doing!' and 'You could have gotten us killed ***!'
    A few moments after that he saw what Uriu was staring at. It would have been hard to miss. They both gazed at the once great Imperial City, now merely an isolated island in the great lake surrounding it. Its large white walls, preventing them to see what was happening on the inside, and three towers surrounded it with one giant one in its center. Water that appeared almost black spanned the gap between the broken bridge and the city walls. But above the city was a giant demonic ring. Inside the space of the ring was a dark void that lead to the hellish landscape of Oblivion. Connected to it were three enormous chains that dived down into the Imperial City. This was the Daedric contraption known as an Anchor. Seeing this hollow setting of the once great capital of Cyrodiil deprived Uriu's face of happiness.
    Ashure sat down next to Uriu and nudged him in the shoulder. Turning around Uriu's eyes were filled with tears. He couldn't help but feel sympathy.
    "Stop crying you baby!" Ashure yelled. The sudden outburst caught Uriu off guard. "There's nothing you need to cry about. It's still there isn't it?" They both returned their eyes back to the empty capital. "There are certain times when a man is allowed to cry. 1: if you're cooking with onions. 2: when a cute animal dies. 3: maybe, MAYBE, if a performance is that amazing. And 4: when we lose something precious. That city has yet to be lost to the Daedra. Well, not completely anyway. So until it is, hold your tears only when you need them."
    Those words moved Uriu, in a weird way. So he wiped his tears away and stood up. Leading the way, Ashure smiled, and started walking to the other side of the bridge.
    "How did you know?" Uriu asked quietly, still walking.
    "There's only one type person that looks at that place with true terror," Ashure answered coolly.
    When emotions started to return back to normal Uriu realized something important. "Wait where are we?"
    Ashure stopped in his tracks. "I have no idea."
    Any and all respect Uriu had for him and his speech disappeared immediately. "What do you mean you don't know! You're the one who's been here! You should know where your base is!"
    "Well you're the one that messed up the teleport in the first place!" Ashure roared back. "Not to mention it's starting to get dark. Do you have any idea what lives around here at night? People have died from night attacks you idiot!"
    "Well it's a good thing that Za'Kiro is here isn't it?"
    They looked up the hill and leaning on a large rock was their sneaky feline friend.
    "Kiro!" Ashure and Uriu cheered.
    I could swear a vein popped on the khajiit's forehead. "Don't tell me that idiot got you on that gag too!" he yelled furiously. "You better thank the Eight that Za'Kiro found you. Ashure has a terrible sense of direction." Uriu laughed as Ashure started waving his fist at him. Za'Kiro couldn't help but smile at the pair. "All you needed to do was climb over this hill and you could easily see Fort Dragonclaw."
    The two couldn't believe it. They had to see how close they actually were for themselves. Climbing up the steep hill would have been hard but they did it extremely fast with a burst of adrenaline. It was getting dark so it was hard to see but as they squinted it wasn't incredibly difficult to see the large keep in the distance. Now this wasn't a short walk. Fort Dragonclaw is an enormous base don't get me wrong. But in their eyes it was little more than a speck in the grand view of the snowy landscape. Winding hills, rivers, rock formations, valleys, and the occasional mountain would be along their way during the journey. Poor Ashure's and Uriu's jaws dropped seeing how far away it was. This was all humorous to the laughing Za'Kiro.
    "Ok. I can understand any reason you have for killing me now Ashure," Uriu mumbled.
    "You better," Ashure replied with a half dead response. "Molag's Ball. Did it really have to be this far away? Well I guess now that I think about it, we were thinking of Fort Dragonclaw as well as the Imperial City. This would probably be a middle point in between them. Uriu, you better thank the Eight we didn't end up in the lake and were devoured by slaughterfish."
    To this Uriu turned half hopefully. "Does that mean you forgive me?"
    "No, I will kill you as soon as we get there," Ashure answered coldly. Uriu felt depressed again. "Or if we're hungry I'll kill you halfway and eat you. Either way, when I'm done with you you'll be in worse shape than Casper."
    "Who's Casper?" Uriu asked fearfully.
    "Funny story. I'll tell you about it later." He turned to Za'Kiro. "Oh yeah. What the heck are you doing all the way out here anyway? There's no way you happened upon us by accident this far from the fort."
    "Za'Kiro saw our Wayshrine fluctuate at the fort," he replied. "That either means someone pissed in it again, or some idiot thought of several places at the same time. Or in your case, idiots."
    Ashure gave him the finger. "Yeah screw you too buddy. And for your information it's this idiot that messed it up," he pointed at Uriu.
    "Hey come on I was having my dramatic emotional scene!" Uriu retorted.
    "No one cares about your emotional tearjerker scene!" Ashure yelled back. "This isn't that kind of story."
    At this point Za'Kiro motioned them to calm down. "Any chance you can kill each other on the way to Fort Dragonclaw? It's really frick'n freezing out here."
    "Is that some sort of cat thing?" Ashure asked with a slight smile.
    "No you fool! Ok, maybe, but you try spending your entire life in a desert and then come here!" Ashure and Uriu chuckled.
    With that Za'Kiro lead as the two argued the whole way back to Fort Dragonclaw. If I really wanted to I'd probably add some teamwork scene during their long journey to the guildhall. You know, all that feel good stuff. But odds are that wouldn't really happen. Even though that part of the Covenant territory borders the Pact's, they wouldn't attack each other because of their mutual agreement to beat the crap out the Dominion first. Then they would kill each other later. But seeing as how at that time the Dominion still controlled a little less than half of Cyrodiil that wouldn't happen for a while. I think. And worst of all, it would take up the rest of the episode, and ain't nobody got time for dat!
    The worst part of the journey took about four hours. Without Za'Kiro showing them what paths to take it is very likely that they wouldn't have gotten there until the following night, or even month if Ashure was leading the way. By the time they had arrived to the large stone walls of the fort, Za'Kiro had a migraine worse than Ashure's. During that whole time, the two never stopped arguing. This entire process made Za'Kiro question why he had ever decided to put them together (as well as living). There were several times while walking past a high cliff that he was very tempted to push them off it. No one would ever know. But thankfully he was done and the two finally shut up. As usual, Uriu was awed by every little thing he saw. Namely the fortifications and broken siege vehicles that surrounded the wall of the fort.
    One of the guards manning the wall saw them and nudged his buddy to draw his bow and arrow and called, "Halt! Who goes there? State your identities and business for entering Fort Dragonclaw."
    "For crying out loud," Za'Kiro moaned. "Jimmy! It's Za'Kiro you fool. Put down the bow before you get yourself hurt."
    You couldn't see it under the helmet, but the guard was incredibly embarrassed as he fumbled his arrow back into its quiver. "M-my apologies sir! But you know the rules. I can't let anyone in without proof of identification, especially around these parts."
    This is a natural occurrence when traveling with a khajiit who happens to be one of the three allied races of the Dominion (racists). It didn't take long for them to show the guards their Dragon Tears tattoos that every official member had. Ashure's was crimson red on his chest and Za'Kiro's was a lighter shade of red on his neck. The Dragon Tears tattoo basically was a dragon forming a spiral with its wings extended out, and a single small tear next to its eye.
    The guards opened the enormous gate door that revealed an empty courtyard. After they entered, the doors were immediately closed behind them. Looking up, Uriu starred in marvel at the large fortress. Stone steps lead to a door as large as the one they just went through. Above their heads was a railless balcony that some people were sitting on with their feet dangling. Next to them were placed siege weapons to prevent attackers from getting inside the main keep. Uriu turned around to see an endless amount of guards on top of the wall, patrolling. In his head he was wondering how they ended up getting this fortress as their guildhall.
    Before even opening the door you could hear the sound of music playing and people laughing. After going through a hallway it opened up to a large space that was filled with a bar, several long tables that people were dancing on top of, and a platform where a group of bards played all the guild's favorite songs! If these were the same people that were in the Daggerfall Inn then he could understand why the innkeeper hated them so much. They were actually fun. The entire guild had to be there for it to be this crowded.
    The three started walking forward into the guild hall. But Ashure turned back and yelled so Uriu could hear him, "Za'Kiro and I have to talk. If you could do me a favor and stick around here for a while that would be great."
    "What the heck am I supposed to do here?" Uriu asked loudly. "I don't know anyone."
    Ashure patted him on he back. "Talk to people, socialize, get to know them. These people here are going to be your guildmates for the rest of your time here. The sooner you make some friends the better."
    Ashure pushed him into the sea of the crowd. It didn't take long for Uriu to get mixed in with everyone. Several times people would push him aside and spin him so he didn't know where Ashure had left him. He got so dizzy that he ended up collapsing on the bench of one of the tables without realizing all the people that were already there. Still seeing the world in blurs and swirls, he didn't notice the people whose conversation he interrupted and were now giving him weird looks. All except for the man next to him. He laughed and patted Uriu on the shoulder.
    "Quite a crazy party for a bunch of scholars wouldn't you say?" the man next to him yelled cheerfully. "Say I've never seen you around here before. You new?"
    Eventually the world became flat and straight again. Still loud, but at least it looks right. He looked around to see what had happened to realize everyone at that table was looking at him. A feeling of embarrassment slowly creeped over him and showed through his face. The man next to him continued to laugh.
    "I'll take that as a yes. Well, welcome to the Dragon Tears. Don't let anyone here scare you. Accept Rok'Nar. Then you know you're sober. Let me introduce everyone. We love it when a new guy shows up!"
    The man's name was Vayne. He's a blonde, upbeat guy that's famed for his blacksmithing skills. Whenever anyone wants armor or weapons, they run to him only realizing afterwards that they can't pay for it. In general he likes to talk tough as an officer and rally his fellow guildmates behind his shield and imaginary banner. But since he's shorter than average as well as lighter, and likes to prove his strength to others, he's often sent flying by his much bigger opponents.
    Across from him was a woman clad in armor with a large axe strapped to her back. Her name was Rose or as some called her, the 'Whistling Rose'. Compared to what you might imagine a person named Rose would appear and act like, she could quite possibly be the polar opposite. She always seemed to have a mug in her hand and is known as the guild's heaviest drinker. One of the physically strongest women in guild she is known to be quick to a fight and pummel her opponents (often while drunk... and with the mug). So in other words great for parties!
    Next to Rose was another woman named Arbora. In a light green linen, blue eyes, blonde hair, and with a gentle smile, she is one of the kindest people in the guild (and unfortunately the scariest when angered). Her healing skills are legendary. It was said that while channeling healing spells on her target, she heals wounds before they are even inflicted! Later someone told Uriu that she was one of the head officers of the guild, same as Za'Kiro. He was quite taken by surprise.
    Sitting next to Uriu was an imperial with short blonde hair. This man was Praethor. A templar that wasn't exactly the perfect picture of a holy man. He takes any job that has to do with witches. Don't ask, he just really likes yelling, "Burn the WITCHES!" I think it's something to do with his favorite traveling troupe known as the 'Monty Python'. All we know for sure is that he makes great barbecue.
    Across from him was a khajiit by the name of Sygiil. She is a pupil of Za'Kiro's and has roughly the same backstory as every other khajiit in the Covenant. That being exiled, arrested, sent away from home, and for one reason or another decided to stay. Not very original so there isn't much need to go into detail. Following Za'Kiro's bad habit as a thief, she will often be accused of stealing from other members of the guild, even before they find out something was stolen, and they'll often be right.
    Sitting next to her was a nord called Ahmik. Like Rose he was bulky, wore heavy plated armor, and wielded an axe (so in general the male version of Rose... ish). His hair was tied back in dreads and had a goatee. Ahmik is a more jolly type of person. Unfortunately he is terribly too trusting of people, one thing lead to another, someone died, and he ended up in the Covenant (and ended up in the company of the Dragon Tears... big mistake). He likes to help anyone in need with literally ANY need. Even though he's so outgoing, for some reason he's shy among big groups. Imagine how he felt at that party and at that table. Lets just say you could here his armor rattle.
    The last person I will mention (since there's way too many people to talk about) is a man named Bezelar. Sorry if it looks weird describing him because he is the strangest looking bald breton in the world. All of his squinted and impish features seem to be pulled towards the center of his face. Like Arbora, Bezelar is one of the official healers in the guild but instead wears armor rather than robes. You will often find him staring into space daydreaming, and he will often be staring directly at you while doing it. Besides his profession as a healer, people fill in orders to him for potions that may, or may not, accidentally turn you into a frog for several days (I don't want to talk about it).
    Uriu was quite taken by his now instant and questionable friends. They laughed at stories they told during their time in the guild. Several times Vayne, Rose, Bezelar and Praethor would stand on the benches to sing to one of the songs they really liked. "Tis Dragonsbane we be! And to the glory of battle we see! To all you Dominion pretty boys, and nerdy candy asses! We will always light you with a box of magic matches!" They were a lively bunch. Every now and then they'd try to teach Uriu one of the songs that was being played. He respectfully declined.
    After another song, Vayne sat back down laughing and panting at the same time. He turned to face Uriu. "So what's it like having Ashure as your team leader?" Vayne asked. "I hope he hasn't been treating you coldly has he?"
    It took a moment to think about. The first thing that came to Uriu's mind was all the times Ashure said he was going to kill him on the way there. But he didn't want to completely tarnish his name. There were more times he actually had fun with Ashure that day. So he gave a more vague answer.
    "Ashure can be tough sometimes," he answered as everyone's eyes were on him. "And we may have our arguments. But in general he's a really cool guy."
    They all seemed to smile at that. Then they started laughing. None of this made sense to Uriu. Had he said something wrong?
    Vayne chuckled at Uriu's response. "Sorry about that. The only reason I asked that is because it's the 31st." Uriu gave a confused look. Was it the anniversary of someone's death? Did he have a periodic illness? Could today be the day that he officially joined the guild? (Wait why would that be depressing?) Before Uriu could ask, Vayne continued on. "You mean you don't know? Ashure's always depressed on the 30th and 31st of each month."
    "Why's that?" Uriu asked in earnest.
    They all started to laugh. Vayne especially. "It's nothing really. He just sees those days and they make him feel like he's getting old."
    "And he's not even 30 yet," commented Rose.
    Praethor sighed. "Seriously, he thinks 30's old? Then what does that make us?"
    "I think he said it was something about the wrinkly skin," Ahmik added. "Or maybe it was that he'd get fat and lethargic. Or he'd have to go to the bathroom every half an hour."
    "Basically, don't let anything he does today discourage you from who he is," Vayne interrupted. "Because I'm fairly confident that by tomorrow you're going to see a completely different person."
    That thought scared him in a way. What could the real Ashure be like? Would he like that Ashure more than the current one? You'd hope so. Different possible personalities started bouncing around his head. Some more realistic than others, a LOT more realistic than others. Some sounded fun and outgoing. Yet some scared the living crap out of him. Uriu's face was like when you're really pumped up for the season premiere when the last one had a crappy dramatic ending. But the question still stood. Who was Ashure Glory?

    Ashure sat down as he reached the main hall where the officers usually were, discussing about jobs, events, and what to do with certain aspects of the guild. It was a large open space, with a long dining table in the center and torches around the hall. At the very end of the table sat Ras and Rok'Nar, talking about whether or not to take part in the war effort. Za'Kiro told Ashure to wait at the opposite end as he headed to his associates. All Za'Kiro knew was that he had something important to tell the Council. Currently there was only four present. Three were in the room, one was downstairs, and the remaining three were out on missions.
    Ras and Rok'Nar already seemed tired from a long discussion. Za'Kiro addressed them informally since he himself was a Councilor. Sitting down, Za'Kiro gestured Ashure to come forward. Getting back out of his chair he slowly walked to their side of the table. Ras' feet were laying on the table as he laid back and Rok'Nar's arms were crossed as Za'Kiro sat patiently.
    "It would seem we were given an extremely important mission this time," Ashure stated. "There's no way me and Uriu can do this alone. And since you'd want to be apart of this anyway I'd like to ask if-"
    "Wait wait wait," Ras interrupted. He leaned forward. "Who's Uriu?"
    The fact he interrupted for such an unimportant detail made Ashure slightly annoyed. "He's a new recruit. Just joined this morning."
    "Ohhhh," Ras replied. "Ohhhhh! The one that Za'Kiro was telling me about. The one that didn't hesitate to the whole 'stare death in the face' thing. Dang, I was hoping that would actually scare some people. Oh well. Please carry on."
    "Well," Ashure continued, "BEFORE I was interrupted, I was going to request that the members of the Council help us with our current mission."
    This is one of the rules of common courtesy in the guild. As a rule, you are not supposed to interrupt on another member's mission. But if the person asks you for help you may intervene as well as get a smaller portion of the reward which the person asking for help may choose how much. The rule was made in order to reduce chaos of guild missions. It would be a hassle to deal with a mission that three different groups all wanted to take and get the reward for.
    "According to what we were able to find, the Red Rook bandits are planning an assassination of the King of Daggerfall."
    Their eyes widened. Hearing this, Ras sat up a little straighter to listen. "Go on."
    "We found out their hideout is located at Ilessan Tower but need some assistance raiding it. Now I don't know how much you guys want of the cut, but I'll be willing to-"
    Rok'Nar held his hand up. "We do not want any of the money Ashure," he said.
    Ras stood up quickly. "Hey hold on just a second. Sorry for my friend here. We would like-" He was stopped short as Rok'Nar hit him on the top of his head.
    "Have you no shame? We would be honored to save the King's life. Money or none. That's the way it's supposed to be. The same should go for you, Rastafariel."
    His head was still bent down without a response. After a moment he rubbed his head where Rok'Nar hit him.
    "Oww," Ras groaned. "Sorry about that. Old habits die hard. But Rok's right. We'd be glad to help. Money or... None. Besides it makes sense in a way. Think of it as a gift for your first mission as a team leader. We should wait until the morning, and then head out. I'll have Rok'Nar, Arbora, Za'Kiro, and myself travel alongside with you."
    At the sound of this Ashure was amazed. "Four Councilors to help on our mission? You could clear them out by yourselves if you wanted to."
    Za'Kiro laughed. "According to the rules we can't do that. But we wouldn't mind backing you up. We protect our guildmates no matter what. That's what makes us Councilors. Do not fret my friend. Za'Kiro always watches out for his allies."
    Ras grinned. "Then it's settled. All six of us will raid the tower at dawn. You know. Because dawn sounds a lot cooler than saying 6 am. And there's nothing you can do to change our minds Ashure. So deal with it."
    He couldn't help but smile. Even when they were annoying, they were still good to be around. That was the great thing about the Dragon Tears. Everyone had everyone's back.
    "Thanks," Ashure said with a smirk.

    The next morning everyone in the mess hall was sleeping, drooling, moaning, and had a terrible hangover. Uriu was snoring as he laid over the table on his bench. He felt a nudge on his shoulder as his eyes started to crack open, and then close abruptly. Now there was a jab on his shoulder. He tried shooing it away. Oh no. There was something cupped around his ears. Please be merciful.
    "Rise and shine!"
    The loud voice echoed through his entire body. Uriu's eyes were wide open. All that was going through his mind was Who is about to die? When he looked up it happened to be none other than Ashure himself. He was smiling like crazy for no reason and seemed to be bouncing off the walls.
    "Good morning Uriu my friend what a nice today is huh I don't understand why everyone's sleeping why are people sleeping I slept a little but I was psyched about this our mission what about you are you ready for today come on let's go I haven't done any exciting missions a while how about you huh you ready you excited huh?"
    Besides another butchering of the English language, this was the reactivation of the real Ashure Glory. Forget everything I've told you about him before. Because that was a one time joke that will never be used again after reading the comments section. The real Ashure was an energetic (though not usually this energetic), out there, spontaneous, at times confusing, and laughing idiot that could care less about what anyone thinks (or at least so he says). He hates killing when it isn't necessary. In general, Ashure fights for his ideals so at the end of the day everyone's laughing. After all the preparation Uriu had for whatever Ashure's real personality was, he was not prepared for this. Eventually Ashure left him alone and started running around bothering other hungover people.
    There was the sound of laughter behind him. Turning around Uriu saw a fully equipped Ras, Rok'Nar, Za'Kiro, and Arbora. Ras wore his dark blue robe and hood, linen wrapped around his hands, and cloth boots with a sword strapped to his side. Rok'Nar's entire orcish battle armor was on and instead of his war axe he had a smaller mace on his side and shield over his back. Za'Kiro's black leather grabs were strapped and tight over his fur, his mask over his mouth, and a pair of deadly daggers by his sides. Arbora's mage robes were turquoise and had her hood down. An ivory bow was strapped to her back.
    Za'Kiro chuckled at the confused look on Uriu's face. "Oh don't worry. This will only last about half an hour. He's still in his 'hyperactive phase'. Are you ready for the mission?"
    Uriu was still a bit confused since he literally woke up 13 seconds ago. To this Ras came out and said, "We're heading for the tower today. The Red Rooks shouldn't be that difficult of an opponent compared to a few others we've bested. With all our luck we should be able to kill them all and leave by nightfall. We'll probably have to set up camp before returning to Daggerfall. Now, rookie, any other questions?"
    For some reason Uriu was giving Ras a strange look. During the entire time Ras was giving his explanation, he seemed to occasionally wink at Uriu. At first Uriu was sure that either it was just him, or maybe dust got in Ras' eye or something. But by the tenth wink he was confident that it wasn't just him.
    Since guys jump to conclusions, Uriu looked towards Za'Kiro and asked "Is he trying to make a move on me?"
    Now if everyone was drinking something at that time, they would have spit it out like in every cartoon. No one had a clue what was going on. Or at least not until Rok'Nar glanced over to see Ras' eyes simultaneously winking. He laughed.
    "Hey Ras, your eyes are acting up again."
    He held his hand out over his eye to see if he was right. "Aw crap. Not again. I swear this is the fifth time this week."
    Let me explain. Our dear friend Ras has a winking problem (and so does the rest of our society). He was so into spontaneously winking one time at a guild party where there was a bunch of beautiful women and hints of sarcasm (and other things) that he couldn't stop. Now our poor friend not only has a ridiculously long name, but now he also can't stop winking (trust me it doesn't end there).
    Now feeling enlightened about the incredibly weird guildmaster, the group was ready to leave. Also Ashure final calmed down and seemed to be extremely tired. Rok'Nar had to carry him on his back so they could leave the keep. Understanding where they had to go, Uriu tried using the Wayshrine again, removing all other thoughts from his mind. Remembering the tip Ashure gave him, Uriu shouted, "Daggerfall!" Again the astral magic enveloped him as well as the others. And again their bodies dematerialized and disappeared from the fort.
    When they came back, Uriu took several deep breaths. He thought he couldn't breathe during the fast travel. Luckily this time everyone materialized standing. Uriu's gaze turned to the horizon where the sun was still barely visible. Does no time pass in between the fast travel? he thought. Shrugging he turned back to his group.
    They were all stretching as if for a marathon. Ashure finally came back to normal and leaned against Uriu. "So how was your first night at the guildhall?" he asked.
    "It was interesting," Uriu replied. "I had a good time meeting a few people and learning about the guild."
    Ashure laughed. "It's definitely an interesting guild for scholars huh? You should have seen it when I first joined back when old man D'Narius was still in charge. Man were those some good times."
    "D'Narius?" Uriu asked confused.
    "I'll tell you about it later." Ashure walked forward to face the rest of the group. "Alright gang listen up! Technically this is still my mission, and because of that, I'm still in charge. I don't want any complainers, whiners, criers-"
    "That was you last time."
    "Whimpers, farters-"
    "What does that have to do with-"
    "And most importantly, no complainers."
    "You already said that"
    Ashure shooshed them. Everyone was starting to look at him in annoyance. "He's getting way too into this."
    Turning around Ashure pointed to the distance. "Alright lets head out!"
    He looked as if he was marching in the direction he pointed. Finally Ras called out, "Hey fearless leader! Ilessan Tower is that way," he pointed behind him.
    In one fluid motion he turned around and continued walking as he said, "I knew that."
    A giant face palm echoed through the group. They started following Ashure who was now heading in the right direction. Morale seemed at an all time low at the start of the day.
    "Za'Kiro is still debating whether he's still in his 'reactivation phase'," Za'Kiro commented.
    "I'm still debating about whether or not we'll all make it back alive," Rok'Nar replied back staring at Ashure.
    Their walk took a few hours. The entire time Ashure and the others tried holding conversations, but eventually the subject died and someone had to think of something else to talk about. Ras and Rok'Nar would explain to Uriu the different rules and aspects of the guild in which he would have to partake. Whenever he had the chance, Ashure would add in a sarcastic joke that only him and Za'Kiro would laugh to, there by pissing off Ras who was in deep conversation. So a lot of it was quick jabs at each other that neither Uriu or Arbora took apart of. During most of the journey Uriu wondered if this was what it would always be like. But then again he realized this wasn't quite so bad.
    Finally by the time that the sun was at it's highest, the group finally made it to the Ilessan Tower. The tower, in best description, looked like a total piece of crap to have as a hideout. Rubble was everywhere, there wasn't even a door or guards, and half of the actual tower was missing. Crouching behind a boulder so as to avoid any possible lookouts, they crowded to form a plan.
    "I say we rush them!" Rok'Nar let out. "Let their heads roll as we urinate all ov-"
    Ras hit him over the head. Which actually hurt because he was wearing a fairly strong helmet. "That's a terrible idea," he whispered, shaking his now red hand back and forth. "We need a plan. There's gotta be over 50 or so guys in there."
    Everyone looked over the boulder at the hollow tower. If there were any people there, they couldn't see them. They all crouched back down into their circle.
    "Maybe you were punked Ashure," Za'Kiro whispered. Ashure dropped his head down.
    Arbora shook her head. "No, this is a known hideout of the Red Rook Bandits. There's probably a cellar that leads to their actual hideout. We won't know until we look."
    Resurrected, Ashure nodded his head continuously assuming Arbora must be right (because if she wasn't that would mean Ashure was hoodwinked). Ras still pondered what they should do as he stroked his nonexistent beard. Uriu stayed silent in fear of screwing up. Since this was his first time he didn't believe he had any good advice to give. He looked around as the others were thinking of what to do as well. When he looked to Ashure he saw him with his eyes closed and wasn't moving. Finally he stood up and everyone looked to him wondering what he was about to do.
    Unsheathing his sword he braced it in a stance and roared, "Screw it, lets run wild!"
    Ras, Arbora, and Za'Kiro had another major facepalm as Rok'Nar was smiling wildly in agreement. Yet Uriu didn't know what to think. Was this an act of bravery or perhaps an act of sheer stupidity? He couldn't say. He only knew the guy for less than two days. From what he had seen he knew that Ashure had combat experience. So all he could do was stare at him hopefully.
    As the others decided Aw screw it, the group headed for the tower. All their weapons were unsheathed and Uriu pulled out his bow. They didn't run towards the tower like idiots don't worry. They took to different sides of the doorway and slowly looked around. Guess what? Yep it was empty. But when they look at the ground near the stairwell they found a cellar door. Turns out Arbora was right and Ashure wasn't a complete idiot.
    Climbing down a slightly creaky wooden ladder, they found themselves in what looked similar as to perhaps a dungeon. There were long hallways surrounded by stone with single torches to illuminate the entirety of the hideout. Luckily for them, the bandits don't keep guards near the entrance of their base to look out for, hm, I don't know, attackers? Na. Who needs those? Only a major hole in their defenses. But they did hear voices from further down the hallway. Ashure smiled at the others as they knew what to do.
    Sneaking up on a group of four bandits, they easily overtook them but not before they could call for their friends for help. The group ran as fast as they could to the main opening where they should find whoever was in charge of this place. Bandits would come from their rear and Uriu would call them, firing a flurry of arrows at them.
    Rok'Nar challenged whole groups of them with his shield. Whenever one came near him he would bash them in the face and then nail them down with his mace. After beating down five of them, a female bandit came and started releasing a bunch of slashes with her daggers. All he did was block them. There were no signs of him trying to fight her.
    Uriu looked over to him and yelled, "What are you doing?"
    "That's Rok'Nar's problem," Ras answered. "He can't fight women."
    A look of fear came into Uriu's eyes.
    Hearing this the bandit woman smirked and taunted, "What's wrong Orc? You aren't a coward are you? Awwww. Is someone too afraid to hit a girl?"
    Rok'Nar's look became stone cold. When Uriu last looked, his eye's had become blood red and rage consumed him. He took to the offensive, wailing down a great many swings of his mace. Even when all color left he still went berserk. When he stopped he looked to the other bandits who were now cowering at the sight of him. Without a moments hesitation he attacked them too.
    "Crap," Arbora murmured as she gave random bursts of healing spells to her companions. "Rok's lost it again." She continued to send out waves of healing while the others fought and fired a few arrows when no one required her to save them.
    Another small group of bandits surrounded Ras while he just stood their with his arms crossed, looking invincible. That was what he intended anyway. But the bandits kept giving him weird looks.
    "Why's that guy wearing a dress?" one asked.
    "I don't know. But I think this creep's hitting on me," said another.
    With a vein on his forehead popped and a sudden burst of random winks, he gave them a murderous winking glare. Cracking his knuckles, he muttered, "Alright, who wants to die first?"
    All Uriu could hear was the cry of a few bandits and the sound of lightning echoing through the hallways. With a final burst of effort, Ashure was the first to charge his way into the main opening, slicing through those that got in his way. Little tents were set up as a bunch of bandits suddenly had all their attention on him. "Crap." They charged him. But instead of fretting, Ashure simply waited until they came closer, and the released a burst of holy fire around him that sent the bandits flying.
    Further ahead, Za'Kiro slipped his way past the fighting that took place with the others. When he came closer to a group of them that were sitting around a fire he smoothly sliced then with his daggers in a single fluent motion. Ras praised him for his slick kill. But then had an angry look on his face.
    "Za'Kiro what are you doing?!"
    He looked back at Ras with two cooked fish stuffed in his mouth that he'd taken from the cooking pot above the fire. Giving Ras an innocent kitty look he continued to gobble down the fish. Ras sighed before electrocuting more victims.
    One of the bandits looked at the group with worry. He was much bigger than the rest and seemed to be wearing a different uniform. The man called all the remaining bandits to attack. With their backs against each other, the group started fighting all that came at them. There was no break in their formation. Uriu was forced to pull out his sword in order to fend off his assailants. Finally all the bandits had fallen and their bodies surrounded them. Now only the lead bandit was left.
    He stretched his neck. "Alright. I guess that means I must join the fray."
    Ashure grinned. "Alright guys. Thanks for your help. But I think Uriu and I can handle this one. You guys keep the stragglers off us ok."
    The rest of them smiled. "Yeah sure whatever."
    Seeing his challenge was met, the lead bandit unsheathed his daggers. Taking this as a sign to step up his game, Ashure took out a jar from his pack. He poured what seemed to be oil over his blade and then held it up, ready to fight.
    Looking to Uriu, he smiled and said, "You ready for the main event? You should feel lucky. You get to see my technique."
    Holy Fire started to appear in his hands. The flames quickly touched the oil and lit the entire sword on fire. Uriu could only stare in awe at Ashure's unique ability. Thinking it a smart idea to stay out of his way, Uriu pulled out his bow. For some reason the lead bandit smiled at them. And the clash began.
    A fury of attacks were let out between Ashure and the bandit. The bandit did his best to avoid the flames as he was aware of what templars could do with them. As soon as Ashure backed away, Uriu sent an arrow flying straight into the man's chest. He let out a fierce cry but Ashure didn't give him time to feel pain. Another burst attacks came and the bandit did his best to keep up with his wound. Seeing another opportunity, Uriu fired another arrow. Luckily the bandit was able to dodge in time. But this left him unbalanced. With the perfect time to strike, Ashure swung one fierce strike across the bandit's chest. The blow left him in shock from the burning pain, and he fell to the ground.
    They took deep breathes. Ashure stood up and stared at the lead bandit. Any blood that had tainted his blade was immediately burned away by the holy fire. The flames on his sword diminished and he sheathed it. Uriu and the rest of the group looked at him to hear the words that they were all wanted him to say.
    Returning his gaze to the group, Ashure smiled and stated, "It's all over."
  • AshureGlory
    Any and all advice/feedback would be really helpful, I hope you guys will enjoy the fourth and final part to Episode 1 next week! :)
  • AshureGlory
    Episode 1 part 4

    The bodies were all lying beaten and bruised. Blood covered the floor as the torches flickered around the large room. Ashure walked away from the lead bandit without so much as saying a word. Uriu couldn’t tell if he was being cold, ruthless, or sad. He looked back down at the bandit he helped kill. His eyes widened when he saw his chest rise slightly, and then go back down.
    He looked back towards Ashure and yelled, “Hey Ash, this guy’s still alive! Shouldn’t we-”
    Uriu was stopped abruptly when Za’Kiro placed his hand on his shoulder. The look in his eyes were serious. He gestured to all the other bodies around him. It didn’t look like anything at first. But when he looked closer he could see they were all still breathing, they were merely unconscious. His gaze returned to the solemn Ashure walking towards the exit. When he turned to look at the others they were all smiling at Uriu now that he understood. Well, all except Rok’Nar. He was too busy pissing on all the bandits to take part in this emotional scene.
    When they got out of the tower, Uriu was surprised to see that the sun was going down. Just how long had they been down there? Then again they had to wait for Za’Kiro to finish looting all the bodies for what little gold they had on them which added a good chunk of time.
    “We should set up a camp for tonight,” Ras advised. “We can deliver the news and claim the reward tomorrow. For now we need to get a fire going, something to eat, and find a safe place to rest.”
    Without complaint, everyone did their assigned job. Uriu and Arbora started setting down all the equipment under a large oak tree. Meanwhile Ashure and Rok’Nar started collecting firewood. Ras asked Za’Kiro to help him find herbs, animals, anything that could be eaten. As everyone returned to the campsite, Arbora organized all their materials and such so she could start cooking them a meal. Using an assortment of herbs, spices, and the unlucky rabbit, she decided a good stew was in order.
    Rok’Nar left in a fit of rage saying that men need to eat real meat in order to remain strong. He came back 20 minutes later with an entire deer being dragged behind him. Since Arbora was evidently mad that he didn’t want her stew, she told him to make it himself. Gladly he turned two entire legs over the fire, and devoured them as soon as they were done before anyone else had the chance to ask for one.
    The moon started to rise as night had fallen upon them. With their bellies full, and the firelight resonating around them, it was only natural that they would want to tell stories. It started when Uriu asked Rok’Nar why he couldn’t fight women.
    He gazed at the fire with a cold stare. “From an early childhood I was always a fighter.”
    Very quickly Ras hit him upside the head. “Not the long version idiot!” he roared into Rok’Nar’s ear. “We don’t have enough time for that.” He looked up smiling to Uriu. “In short, Rok was beaten the crap out of as a little kid then proceeded to let his mentor die, therefor getting him exiled from the clan.”
    Ashure and Za’Kiro gave Rok'Nar dirty looks at the same time.
    “You ***,” Ashure growled.
    “You don’t deserve to live,” Za’Kiro added.
    Rok’Nar buried his face into his hands as his armor shook. “I didn’t mean to,” he quivered. “It was an accident I swear! I wasn’t in my right mind I promise!”
    Suddenly their scowls turned into smiles. At the same time they patted him on the back and said, “We kid, we kid.”
    In a burst of rage, Rok’Nar came out of his hands and yelled at them, “You ***! Don’t you have any sense of pity? Shame? Sympathy?”
    They both made faces at him. “Nope.”
    He started waving his fists at them as they continued making faces at him. In fact I’m sure he would have killed them had it not been for what happened next. Arbora gave them all a smile. Tilting her head slightly she said cheerfully, “Boys.” They all stopped what they were doing. “Why don’t you sit down and stop your fighting? Somebody might get hurt.”
    Although everything she said was sweet, kind, and gentle, there was something dark coming from her and what she said. I can’t put my finger on it. They started shaking as the muttered, “Y-y-y-yes mam.”
    Ras laughed and looked back at Uriu. “So yeah that’s why he hates it when people call him weak. As well as why he can’t fight women.”
    Uriu still looked confused. Ashure elbowed him whispering, “His mentor was a girl.”
    “Oooooooh. Ok.”
    Now Ashure started to chuckle. “If you think that’s good you should hear Ras’ story. Believe it or not, our Guild Master was once upon a time a pirate.”
    Uriu’s face stared at awe towards Ras. “Are you serious?” he asked.
    With only an embarrassed smile back, Ras pulled out his cutlass from his side. The fire mirrored off it’s polished edges. “This is all I have left of that old life. If it wasn’t for old man D’Narius I probably would still be sailing the seas.”
    “If it wasn’t for D’Narius you would have robbed the entire guild blind,” Za’Kiro added. "Or at least have died in the process." Again Uriu stared amazed. Actually it was more appalled than amazed.
    Ras smiled awkwardly back. “I said I was sorry about that didn’t I? You see Uriu, the entire reason I first joined the Dragon Tears was to steal all the old weapons, books, and artifacts hidden in the archives. But then D’Narius, the old Guild Master, suggested teaching me magic. At the time I thought that would really help when I-say-rob a ship, or are being chased by guards. So I became his pupil. After awhile I actually started liking the guy, along with everyone else in the guild. I did everything I could to prolong the heist. But eventually my fellow pirates said enough was enough, and raided the Archives without my permission. Even my first mate betrayed me. At the heart of the Archives stood D’Narius himself. He knew the whole time what was going on, even when he started training me. He fought them, protecting all the knowledge the guild had worked so hard to attain. Most of them were getting scared off. But then my first mate, Roco, threw a dagger at him, piercing him in the chest. I went berserk. Seeing that, I unleashed everything the old man taught me at Roco. When I was done, nothing remained of him.”
    They all looked down, obviously in acknowledgment of the terrible memory. A single tear went down Ras’ face. He looked back up smiling. “It didn’t kill him but that left him in critical condition. There was no way he could ever fight much less use magic again.” He clenched his fist. “It wasn’t much later that Ashure joined the guild. D’Narius himself brought him in. You should have seen him back then. Such a scared look on his face. D’Narius died about two year ago. Everyone was surprised when he left me in charge. But no one complained. I did just what D’Narius did back when he was the guildmaster. I took care of everyone like they were my own. That was his dying wish. And to this day I have upheld it.”
    There was a long pause where Ras caught his breath. Rok’Nar rose his hand up. “Hey why did you get to go in depth with your backstory and I didn’t?” he asked.
    All at once everyone said, “Because he’s the guildmaster. Shut up.”
    He looked at them all curious. “Did you coordinate that while I was gone?”
    They started to laugh. Uriu turned to Arbora. “What about you? What’s your story?”
    “Not telling,” she replied smiling, tilting her head slightly. Everyone leaned in curious now.
    “Come on Arbora,” they’d say. “Tell us Arbora, tell us.”
    Her head tilted slightly more. “I said I’m not telling.”
    Again they whole group started to shiver. “Y-y-y-yes mam.”
    The attention shifted to Uriu when Za’Kiro asked, “Alright Uriu, your turn. We all know about each other but none of us know anything about you. Tell us your story friend.”
    He smiled and responded, “Well I really just joined the guild for a job. I’ve been traveling for a while looking for work and happened to hear about you guys so here I am.” Everyone (except Arbora) stared at him in disappointment.
    “So you’re telling me that’s it? No tragic backstory?”
    “You weren’t exiled from your homeland and friends, swearing to find and see them again?”
    “You didn’t lose your memory and are trying to find out who you were?”
    “You aren’t scouring the world for power in order to punish those who tortured you?”
    “You aren’t searching for the one you love who was kidnapped by a ruthless king?
    “You didn’t swear to seek revenge against the man that killed your family.”
    "Nope," Uriu replied.
    “I ran away from my family,” Ashure commented out of the blue.
    There was no expression in his eyes, and now the other’s as well (thanks buzz kill). Obviously Uriu could see that this was a sensitive topic among them. For Ashure especially. Heck they made fun of Rok’Nar letting his mentor die and getting exiled, what could possibly be worse than that to make them so quiet? (Hey don’t look at me, I’m not telling)
    It didn’t take long for them to put out the fire and fall asleep. By the time Uriu woke up everyone was already packed up and ready to go back to Daggerfall. They threatened to leave him there so he had to run around to get all of his stuff ready. It didn’t feel like it took long by the time they arrived. The sun was barely on high as they entered the keep.
    Ashure checked in with the officer he last talked to to tell him that the mission was over. The officer thanked him repeatedly for his efforts and said the king should be there any moment to pay them. Hearing this the group knew they could relax for a bit now that they were out of danger. Uriu took the nearest bench and slouched as low as physically possible.
    Since he had spare time, Ashure decided to check on the three stooges still in the dungeons. It was as dark and dismal as ever. Very few torches were lit and most all the cells were empty. That is, all except one. When Ashure walked in front of the bandits’ cell, almost on cue they begged for mercy and not to be killed, burned, hit, cut, smashed, and or pummeled.
    Ashure gave them a victorious smirk. “I’d like to thank you for your help. You might want to find a new occupation if you ever get out of here because that gang of yours is history.”
    Their eyes widened. “You mean to tell us you killed all of the Red Rook Bandits all by yourself? That’s impossible!”
    “Good point. That’s why I had a little bit of help. But none the less, your plans for assassinating the king are gone now. Do you have any last wishes? I’ll enjoy locking that door over there behind me and never seeing any of your sorry faces ever again.”
    One of the bandits in the corner of the cell started shaking and tearing up. “Is there any chance at a reduced sentence?”
    The other bandits looked over to him and yelled, “MiIlan don't!”
    “What could you possibly that you think you can walk out of here on?” Ashure asked curiously. “If you know anything important to us I’ll see what I can do to reduce your time in here. And if you all help I can get all of you out of here in maybe a few years if you're lucky.”
    The middle bandit bit his lip. Finally he answered, “You haven’t stopped anything.” Ashure looked confused. “The assassination team left before we ever told you about them. And now your group has gone and made a mockery of the Red Rooks. They’re not going to wait any longer to kill your king. My guess is that they’re going to strike as soon as the king presents himself inside the keep. And there's no stopping them from killing everyone else along with him.”
    A look of shock took over Ashure. Urgently he looked to the other two and asked, “Is what he says true?!” They both nodded still looking at the ground. With no time to lose he sprinted out of the dungeon. He had to get to the king before the bandits did.

    Uriu sat still tired. Suddenly excitement rang throughout the keep. A man in wealthy looking clothes and long hair walked in with a look of pride. This must have been the king he’d heard about. He didn’t look so much as happy, sad, or afraid about the events that transpired. If anything he looked annoyed. Rich guys like that pissed Uriu off as it probably did the others.
    The officer hurried over towards the monarch. “My king! How was your trip? I hope we didn’t inconvenience you.”
    He gave a snort and without looking directly at the man said, “This was all a waste of time if you ask me.” A burst of shock and anger came from the group. You got to be kidding me! “I doubt there was even a threat from these so called bandits. Do you have any idea how cowardly I must have looked running with my tail between my legs? A dragon never leaves his lair. My good name will be tarnished now.”
    When I’m done with you the only thing that will be tarnished is your…
    “I am very sorry my lord,” the officer apologized. “These bandits were a very serious threat. All of this was for your safety. But luckily the threat has disappeared thanks to these fine people here.” He gestured to the group.
    The king looked at them unsatisfied. “I thought you said you sent the strongest members of the strongest guild there was. These people don’t look impressive at all.” As he turned his back to them, Rok’Nar was fully prepared to kill him if it wasn’t for the others holding him back. “Heck one of them is a crossdresser. Freak.” Ras was fully prepared to kill him if it wasn’t for the others holding him back. “And don’t get me started on the cat.” Za’Kiro was fully prepared to kill him if it wasn’t for Arbora now holding all of them back.
    During the commotion Uriu could swear he heard footsteps. But when he looked over no one was there. All of a sudden a chill ran down his spine.
    “Death to the king,” a voice, silent but strong, echoed through the chamber.
    Two of the guards nearest to the door choked before collapsing with a pair of black clad assassins behind them. Then more appeared as though from the shadows. There must have been a dozen of them now inside the keep.
    “Molag’s Ball,” the king muttered. He ran up the stairs in fear of the assassins. None of them made a move on him though.
    “Protect the king!” the officer boomed to the few remaining guards.
    The group unsheathed their weapons and prepared to fight. One of the assassins somehow sneaked around the fighting and went after King Casimir. Just before he got to the stairs, Uriu tried aiming his bow at him. As he did, another assassin appeared behind Uriu, daggers raised over his head, and went in for the kill.
    With quick reaction, Arbora channeled all of her healing on Uriu. Unable to block Uriu took the entire brunt of the blow. Uriu felt immense pain in his back as the blades cut, yet at the same time felt inexplicably rejuvenated. Instead of slicing through his skin, the daggers seemed to simply pass through his body like a ghost, leaving no trace whatsoever except for the tear in his clothes.
    In quick succession, Uriu fired an arrow at the assassin who collapsed immediately. He looked over to see how everyone else was faring. Ras got up skirted by an assassin before electrocuting him, Rok’Nar was roaring his head off as he waved his mace around with no particular target, and Za’Kiro was being seduced by a fish an assassin was waving in his face. It could definitely be worse. He looked for Ashure but couldn’t find him.
    “Uriu chase after the king!” Arbora exclaimed as she fired a flaming arrow before healing one of the guards. “We can handle things here.”
    He nodded and ran towards the stairs. An unsuspecting assassin was standing guard half way up the stairs and could do little when Uriu fired several arrows. His death was quick an unheard.
    When he finally made his way to the top floor, he stayed back for a second to assess the situation. The king was cornered by a single assassin, probably their leader. The assassin had two daggers and could kill him the king at any time. Luckily he was at a distance away from the assassin so Uriu could quickly pick him off without getting within range of the blades. If he lost that advantage however he wouldn’t stand a chance against the assassin’s superior melee combat.
    Seeing an opportunity arise, Uriu came out of his hiding space and fired an arrow at the chief assassin. Hearing the arrow whizz through the air, the assassin turned around in time to deflect it. In desperation Uriu fired several more shots. Many missed and he deflected the others. This wasn’t good. Uriu was losing ground fast. It was apparent that his long range techniques were useless against the master assassin. Uriu tried moving around the wide open room in an effort to catch him off guard. It didn’t work. In fact it only made his shots even less effective.
    After walking a full 180 degrees around the room, the assassin rushed him, and kicked Uriu hard in the chest. He fell to the ground gasping for air. The assassin didn’t take him seriously at all. He was toying with Uriu at this rate. Growing evermore bored, the assassin raised his dagger high in the air.
    Just before the assassin could finish Uriu off, a light illuminated from behind him. The assassin was sent flying over Uriu with smoke coming off his back. Looking at the direction the light came from he wasn’t surprised to see a certain person in particular. Ashure stood walking from the stairs, a ball of fire in his hand, and sword ablaze. He looked especially ticked off the closer he got to the assassin.
    His eyes were stone cold when he looked down at Uriu and asked, “You ok?” Uriu simply laid there in silence, half scared and the other half still in shock from his near death experience. Again Ashure asked, “Are you hurt?” He shook his head no.
    Relieved, he returned his attention to the assassin. “You must be the most unlucky man in the world. It was a brilliant plan too. Disguised as a guard, you could have easily gotten close enough to use the dark nature magic to kill the king.” He looked back at the fretting king before continuing. “Unfortunately for you, WE were sent after you. Now the bulk of your organization is either crippled or dead, and your plan to assassinate the king foiled. All in a good days work if you don’t mind my saying.”
    Still in pain, the assassin sat up very confused by Ashure’s cool response. Not a hint of anger was in his voice.
    “I was about to kill him,” the assassin stated. “Yet you don’t seem bothered by this at all”
    “Well,” Ashure started patting Uriu, “he’s not dead so you’re lucky there. I have no reason to hate you. Despite your intentions I have no personal grudge against you and therefore no reason to kill you. Alls well that ends well.”
    “Is it really that simple?” the assassin asked. “You don’t care what I’ve done, what I’ve tried to do? And you don’t have any questions for me? Why I did this? Who sent me to do this? Does none of this cross your mind?”
    Ashure looked up and thought for a moment. Then he answered, “All that matters is that my job is done, and my friends are alive and kicking. As for the other stuff, that’s someone else’s problem. Heck we went overboard with our current mission. Got four of our strongest dragged into this. The guards will keep at least one person alive to beat the information out of. Some other adventurer can deal with your employer. He isn’t my problem.” Slowly Ashure kneeled down to face the assassin eye to eye. “Now listen very carefully because this last part’s important. I’m willing to overlook you and let you walk. Scratch that, let you run. Run to tell any and everyone of your organization and others like you to keep out of our way. That if any of you meet a member of the Dragon Tears and so much as touch a hair on their head, we will end you.”
    He let that settle in. The eyes of the assassin shook in fear. Not only was it Ashure’s voice, or his stare, or his weapon, or his demeanor. But his entire being oozed malice that was barely contained. Ashure turned his back and went to help Uriu up. Instead of heading Ashure’s warning, the assassin saw this as a chance to strike.
    The assassin creeped up with his blades in hand, and charged. Uriu was able to see what was happening but didn’t need to say anything. Within a split second Ashure turned towards him. Adrenaline and panic were the only things driving the assassin forward during that moment. In another blink, Ashure’s sword was raised and swung with one effortless strike.
    Time continued to move slowly in Uriu’s eye’s. The blade seemed to hit nothing but empty space around the charging assassin. Suddenly and violently, a plume of flames enveloped the assassin. He crumpled to his knees and burned in the bright holy flame. For one that hates to kill, Ashure didn’t even flinch at the excruciating death. His eye’s only held pity, but not sadness or anger.
    “Your choice was made,” Ashure muttered.
    As the last embers went out, only char remained. Seeing the danger had passed the king came out of his corner and examined the remains of his would-be killer. He couldn’t help but plug his nose. Apparently burning flesh isn’t that appealing (strange I know).
    The officer ran up with his armor clanking at every step. “Sire!” he exclaimed. “It appears all of the bandits have been taken care of. Thanks to these fine men here.” He gestured to Ashure and Uriu.
    The king examined them. “That flaming sword thing seems highly unnecessary and overrated. Do you really need to make such a display when killing someone?”
    Ashure was fully prepared to kill him with that flaming sword had it not been for Uriu holding him back.
    “And you,” the king said examining Uriu. “You… Are quite boring really. There’s nothing extraordinary about you and nothing weird about you. I’m at a loss for word. You're just sort of, meh."
    Uriu didn’t know if that was either a complement or an offence.
    Ashure stood a little anxious. “What about the others?” he asked urgently.
    The officer simply smiled and replied, “Why don’t you see for yourselves?”
    Ashure and Uriu looked over the railing to see the open throne room where all the fighting had occurred. It was very impressive. Around Rok’Nar was a bunch of brutally beaten corpses with yellow stains on them. Ras was surrounded by numerous piles of ash and looked rather pleased with himself. Za’Kiro was nibbling on a fish while sitting on a pile of bodies with deep gashes, cuts, and even a few claw marks. While Ashure leaned there smiling, Uriu was rather awed, amazed, and slightly terrified.
    “Molag’s Ball,” Uriu muttered. “They went overkill on this one.”
    “We will discuss a reward and all the other details downstairs with the rest of your group,” the king said obnoxiously and walked down the stairs.
    Starting to follow them, Uriu stopped when he noticed Ashure still standing their with a wide grin on his face.
    “Look at that Uriu,” Ashure stated. Gesturing towards their companions still standing around the numerous dead bandits (while comparing who had the most kills). “Those are the strongest members of our guild. Not only are they alone impressive, but imagine there still being three others like them! Officially in the guild they are called Advisors as they look after everyone else in the guild. But we personally know them as the 7 Dragons. That means a lot to me Uriu.” His eyes started to gleam in the firelight. “That’s my dream as should be that of everyone. To fight alongside them equally, as men and women of dragons!”
    Uriu stared at Ashure still trying to get an understanding of him. He couldn’t help but smile at the hopeful and driven look of his team leader. He understood Ashure’s feelings. The wish to become stronger. There isn’t a single person that can say they’ve never had that feeling.
    Stretching his arms and legs, Ashure started heading down the stairs. As he and Uriu returned to the rest of the group the king started to make his offer.
    “As much as I hate to admit it, you were all of much help today. As such I’m willing to increase the original reward was 500 gold yes? Well now I’m increasing it to 5000 gold.”
    Everyone stared in amazement. 5000 gold! To the silence the king assumed that this was their way of making a counteroffer.
    “All right all right. 10,000 gold!”
    10,000 gold!? Everyone started dreaming about all the different things they’d buy with their share of the money. Again no one made a response.
    “You sure drive a hard bargain. Let’s make it a nice 50,000 gold!”
    How rich was this guy?
    Rok’Nar almost screwed it all up by starting to say, “I’m sorry sire we cannot take that. This was doing the honorable-”
    In unison, Ras, Ashure, and Za’Kiro tackled Rok’Nar to the ground before he could say anything else. “Shut up you idiot!”
    “You’re right you can’t take that,” the king started. Everyone almost died in an instant. “After all you did save my life. And heck, I’M A FRICK’N KING! 100,000 gold!”
    It a was dream no one wanted to wake up from. They could go on a shopping spree with all that butter. Ashure would buy a new sword and a bunch of books, Ras would buy the softest robe in the world, Uriu would buy some better gear and arrows, Arbora would buyout a hot springs, Rok'Nar would buy the biggest weapon in existence, and of course Za'Kiro would buy a life supply of fish.
    Rok’Nar started to reject it but then Arbora went, “Rok’Nar.” Her head tilted at a full 90 degrees with a sinister smile. “Why don’t you stay silent for awhile hm?”
    He sat in a corner rocking back and forth for five minutes. Meanwhile Ashure shook hands with the king gratefully and thanked him repeatedly before he could take his offer back. With several large bags full of gold they left the keep in a mad hurry.
    At a safe distance, they started to divide up the gold.
    “Ok. so there’s six of us and with 100,000 gold that makes a good 16,666 gold each!” Ras cheered. The other Advisors cheered along with him as they began to take their supposed share of the gold.
    “Ahahah,” Ashure began waving his finger back and forth. “If I remember correctly, back at the guildhall you all said we can keep the ENTIRE share or the reward. So that means Uriu and I get 50,000 gold and you guys get 0!”
    It was like death itself joined the party. The Advisors spirits dropped to depression rapidly as they all admitted he was right. Ironic how things turn out isn’t it?
    Ever so enthusiastic Ashure added, “You know what, you guys did more that your fare share of work today. (you think) I’ll give you each 1000 gold to spend as you please. That’s at least 1% of our total earnings!”
    It was salt in an open wound. Everyone was prepared to kill him that moment. And no one was holding them back. But unfortunately they all had one thing in common. Morals. (also they couldn’t get away with murder at this time of day)
    “Za'Kiro really doesn't want to tell them now,” Za’Kiro muttered. That picked up their ears.
    “Tell us what?” Uriu asked in earnest.
    “We as the Advisors of the Dragon Tears,” Ras started with a dead enthusiastic tone.
    “Would like to congratulate you two for making it up the ranks!” finished Rok'Nar (since he was the only one not affected by the disappearance in their riches). “Uriu you are now an official member of the Dragon Tears and Ashure you have successfully made it to the rank of Tear!”
    “Yaaaaaaay,” the other three gave out a weak cheer.
    Uriu felt flustered. He had already been accepted as a member of the guild! Things were getting all confused in his head. When he looked to Ashure he was surprised to see nothing at first. But then steadily a smile started to grow. Then with tears of joy he leaped into the air and yelled, “Alright!” Uriu grinned. Today was a good day in the life of the Dragon Tears.

    It was dark in the Captain’s chambers. She had been there all day and night reading through the city records. Nothing popped up on this ‘Ashure Glory’ she had met. This was a huge thorn on her side. How could she not have known or heard of someone who had been in her city for however long? If he got in without her knowing then who else could have infiltrated the city?
    To her relief the officer she had sent came back through her door. It was about time for some good news.
    “Well tell me what you found,” she said urgently.
    The guard hesitated. “Well that’s the thing mam. We found nothing.”
    She was appalled by the news. “Say that again?”
    “We looked through every single record in the entire COVENANT mam,” he continued. “From now to 50 years ago. Every birth record, every city entry, every arrest, and every party photo. There’s nothing. The man’s a ghost. There isn’t a mention of an ‘Ashure Glory’ of any kind. According to our reports he simply appeared in the guild a little less than 3 years ago. Other than that and his current involvement with the Dragon Tears that’s all we know. What does this mean Captain?”
    The Captain sat in her chair to think about all of this. It didn’t sit right with her. Not at all.
    “This either means he doesn’t exist,” she began. “Or someone tried pretty damn hard to erase this guy’s past.”

    Episode 1 END
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