Library Unions are a feature located within the Library in Ranhorn. Here, players can fill up each union with specific sets of heroes to gain bonuses for their team.

By accessing the "My Support Heroes" feature, players can also loan out up to 6 heroes for their friends to fill their own unions with and vice versa.

Background

This old library is crammed with countless tales written by the travelling bards of Esperia. Within it are the stories of many great heroes, some touching, others heartbreaking. They tell the tales of how great friendships and alliances were forged, brought together to fight against a common enemy, they are forever unbreakable.

Guide

  • Choose a friend's heroes or your own heroes to form a union.
  • Different combinations of heroes can form different types of unions, increasing your formation's total power.
  • Higher tier heroes are able to activate stronger unions.
  • You can choose what support heroes you'd like to give to your friends via the "My Support Heroes" page.
  • If a player has not been online for over 7 days or a hero being used is lost, then that hero will no longer be available as a support hero.

List of Unions

The Gallant Three

N troop 1.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Hero 3 Bonus
Use Three Heroes HP +1200

HP +1.00%

Use Three Of The Following : Elite+

Hogan

Angelo

Morvus

ATK +150

ATK +5.00%

Use Three Of The Following : Legendary+

Hogan

Angelo

Morvus

HP +2000

DEF +50

HP +10.00%

DEF + 10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

The mood in the encampment was light. Despite the hardships that they knew lay ahead of them, the soldiers were smiling, laughing, trading stories and jests. The fire burned merrily, sending a pillar of smoke funneling into the night sky, the sparks from the flame joining the cold light of the stars before winking out. It was only a short time ago, a few miles off, that they had watched thick pillars of smoke not so different from this one under very different circumstances. The battle with the forces of evil had been bitter and hard fought, but they had prevailed and pushed the enemy back by twenty miles. Even as the men sang and drank, the armies they’d routed were regrouping and adjusting their strategies.

Angelo took in the scene around him. He smiled, feeling the warmth from his canteen of wine spread through his limbs. He had seen these very same men who now seemed so cheerful and harmless fight ruthlessly against a terrifying foe. He had seen the fear and anger in their eyes as their brothers in arms fell around them. He had seen them kill. Every one of these simple, everyday people had risen to a challenge beyond what any of them would have believed possible. Angelo was inspired. He loosened the strings on a bag, and pulled out a lyre. He thought momentarily about the right song for the occasion. Within moments he was plucking out a moving melody, and he began to sing. The men quieted their boasts and jests, turning to listen. The song was one Angelo had composed, taking bits of folklore and bending them to rhyme. The song told the story of Morvus, the dwarven marksman. His feats of daring and marksmanship had reached a near-legendary status. The song was also better chosen than even Angelo realized, as at that moment, unbeknownst to him, Morvus himself sat and listened.

Just away from the warmth of the fire, In the darkness beside a tent, he closed his eyes and frowned. It had been a long time since he had enjoyed hearing these old stories. The memories of the events that inspired the tales and songs weren’t as sweet as a casual listener might imagine. The people in the taverns and town squares who liked to tell these tales and who would listen with rapt attention hadn’t seen the other side of the things that had happened. The blood, the pain, the sacrifice. He grasped his musket, resting his weight on it and sinking the stock into the soft dirt. He would keep fighting, like he always had, but he wouldn’t relish it like he used to. He’d already seen it for what it really was. He lifted his head and stared into the reflection of the firelight on the barrel of his weapon. How many of these men would be inspired to new heights of courage from hearing of his exploits? How many of them would die when they did that? He spat into the dirt. No way for a dwarf to think. No way for a dwarf to act, over here sulking in the shadows. He gathered his wits and stood.

As Angelo neared the end of his tune, the flap to a large nearby tent was pulled back by a rough hand. Several of the soldiers stood at attention, and even those too deep in their cups to manage standing offered a sloppy salute. It was Hogan, a knight and the general of the forces of the frontier. Though he had a reputation for being unforgiving and stern, he was respected and admired by the men he commanded. They knew that their lives and the lives of their loved ones depended on his stoic pragmatism. Tonight, however, was different. The men had scored a victory and gained ground. They deserved a night to relax and let go of their cares. They had risked their lives and made it through to the other side and were happy simply to be still be among the living. Besides, morale was as important to an army as weapons or food. A man holding a lyre and a tankard of ale approached. This must be the nobleman, Angelo. The man offered the tankard and confirmed Hogan’s suspicion.

“Commander Hogan. An honor to meet you. I’ve been hoping to find you. I’d like to compose a song detailing your deeds here…”

“The honor is all mine. I heard you singing and wanted to thank you for coming here and lending your support.”

Hogan looked over Angelo’s shoulder as he spoke, focusing on a figure standing at the edge of the firelight, then leveled his gaze back to the bard.

“Did you write the lyrics to that song?

“Yes, I’ve always been fond of the tales of Morvus”

“Did you happen to see a dwarf here among us? A dwarf with a musket?”

“Yes but surely you don’t mean…”

Morvus stepped up beside him.

“Alright, Hogan. Just tell the boy. I’m Morvus. Yeah. That Morvus. I hope you don’t believe everything you heard in those stories.”

Angelo was almost too surprised to speak.

“But… some of it must be true, isn’t it?”

Morvus grimaced.

“Most of it, actually. That was a long time ago and it was a very different person who did those things. I was arrogant and reckless, and I’m never going to be that person again.”

He stared hard at the ground.

“That’s all over though. Tonight, we’re alive and in one piece.”

He grabbed a tankard and hoisted it in the air.

“Men! A toast! To victory!”


Defenders Of The Forest

N troop 2.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Hero 3 Bonus
Use Three Heroes

Ogi

HP +1200

HP +1.00%

Use Three Of The Following : Elite+

Nemora

Ogi

Arden

DEF +50

DEF +5.00%

Use Three Of The Following : Legendary+

Nemora

Ogi

Arden

ATK +250

DODGE +30

ATK +10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

Deep in the heart of the forest stands an ancient, gargantuan Oak. Its Branches are themselves larger than many trees, and they cover an area that could easily house an entire community.

It is Ygdrassil, and for thousands of years it has bathed its surroundings with a placid green glow. For centuries, Arden would come to Ygdrassil and commune with it, placing his gnarled hand on its gnarled trunk, bowing his head with eyes closed, standing in silence for hours or days. The tree has knowledge buried in its core which even the most wizened Oak Sages haven’t yet grasped.

But something has changed. In his last visit, Arden sensed a deep sorrow emanating from the tree, from root to leaf. Strange vines, with which Arden was unfamiliar, looped around the massive trunk. The emerald shine of the tree was dimming, the leaves appearing withered with fading color. This was indeed an ill omen.

Arden returned to the tree the following day. He stood, frowning at the vines, preparing to settle his mind into the trance-like dream state he used to speak with Ygdrassil. There was a rustling behind him as a graceful white shape emerged from the brush. Nemora. She wore a grave expression.

“Something needs your attention. A Dusk Watch patrol found tracks near the lake that don’t match anything we know. They fear that they could be Hypogean, but they wanted confirmation from a higher authority. Can you spare a moment, wise one?”

Arden’s frown deepened as he nodded his head and set off wordlessly in the direction of the lake. He moved slowly, leaning heavily on his cane. Nemora slowed her gait to walk by his side. As they approached the lake, a stench hit the pair that was unmistakable. Plants were withering, and many didn’t look like they would have any chance of recovery. A trail of charred, sooty earth ran through the growth. There was no doubt as to what had caused this.

“They’ve broken through the protection spell. I didn’t expect it to be so soon.” He turned, lightly grasping Nemora’s arm. “Notify the Dusk Watch at once. They need to mobilize all available resources and increase recruitment. The war has already begun."

Before she could bound away, a thundering roar pealed through the trees. It wasn’t a sound heard often, but one could never forget it after hearing it once. It was Ogi, and he wasn’t happy. They looked to the sound and back at each other. Arden gave a single quick jerk of the head, releasing Nemora’s arm, and she darted toward the commotion, hooves clattering over stones and logs.

A hulking form towered over two Hypogeans. Ogi was the largest thing living in the forest, and even these vicious demons seemed to be wearing their twisted, cruel expressions as a mask for the fear that froze them in place. In Ogi’s left hand were three small chicks, peeping frantically, their nest and the branch which had held it laying broken on the ground. The Hypogeans, as they smoldered through the underbrush, had apparently snapped the limb off the tree. The cries of the distraught chicks had woken Ogi, who had happened to be dozing in a pile of twigs leaves nearby.

Nemora was filled with revulsion at the creatures sullying the place, but Ogi was rage itself. Slabs of muscle shook as he slammed his fist on the ground, and even the leaves on nearby trees shuddered with the impact. He snarled at the two demons.

“BAD!”

He charged headlong toward them, which broke their fear paralysis. They turned heel and made off faster than Ogi could manage. There was no way he’d catch them. He saw it immediately. Without a second thought, he hefted a nearby boulder in his right hand, the left still gently cradling the chicks. The stone flew through the air, landing on one of the invaders. A sickening crunch and a red mist signaled its success. The other ran even faster, fearing the sudden weight of another stone. It wasn’t to come. Though the creature was running full tilt, it detected a rapid approach of hooves at its back. The moment it turned, drawing its weapon, Nemora’s spear bit through its ribcage nearly exiting through its back. It shrieked and clasped at the haft for a moment before slumping to the earth.

Ogi stood, panting, his rage quickly turning to despair as he watched the chicks, hurt and overstressed, cling desperately to life. Nemora cantered up, wiping the blood off her spear.

“Hey don’t worry, big guy.” She placed her own hand, palm down, over the chicks. Ogi felt a serene warmth flow up through his arm and watched as a deep green glow leaked from between Nemora’s delicate fingers. When she pulled her hand away, the two chicks were good as new, sleeping contentedly. A shuffling in the brush announced Arden’s arrival. He saw the broken branch and nest and detected the residue of Nemora’s healing spell. Without having to ask, he tapped the tree with his staff in the place where the limb had been broken, and a new one began to sprout. It grew rapidly, and in one spot several twigs grew into circles, weaving themselves into a nest. He gestured, smiling, toward the replacement home. Ogi approached and with great care, softly placed the sleeping animals into their new home. He looked to Arden. In his emotional state, he was even less articulate than usual. He placed a massive hand on the old sage’s shoulder.

“Thanks.”

Arden patted his hand.

“Join us. Our home and all its inhabitants need to be protected. I think you could help us save this place.”

Ogi nodded fervently as Nemora looked on, a small smile playing on her face.

“Yes. Ogi help. Ogi Protect.”


The Dusk Patrollers

N troop 3.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Hero 3 Bonus
Use Three Heroes

Ira

Kaz

ATK +120

ATK +1.00%

Use Three Of The Following : Elite+

Ira

Kaz

Lyca

HP +1000

ACC +30

HP +5.00%

Use Three Of The Following : Legendary+

Ira

Kaz

Lyca

ATK +250

CRIT +15

ATK +10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

A sharp black shape stabbed through the Hypogean officer’s heart. It slumped to the floor, still wearing a vicious twist on its face. Kaz flicked the blood off her darkened blade and wiped what remained on the grass as she stooped to grab the foul thing under the arms and drag it to a shadowy corner of the encampment. er eyes darted back and forth as she pulled the dead weight through the grass, the only sound its armor rustling through the dark.

When she arrived at a safer location, she began rummaging, checking pockets, boots, and anywhere else that something of value might be found. She was here to kill whichever officers she could find without detection and gather what intelligence she could. Her long ears twitched. More were coming. It sounded like three of them, likely guards on patrol. She paid them no mind and continued feeling through the pockets and armor of the fallen lieutenant. She was tucked away out of sight, safe in the shadows. Surely they wouldn’t see her. The patrol rounded the makeshift barracks and suddenly Kaz was illuminated. She was right about there being three of them, but what she hadn’t expected was the bright light emanating from their eyes, freezing her there in a blind panic. The leader shrieked as an arrow appeared in the small openings of each guard’s armor. They fell, and Kaz turned toward a massive old tree some distance away, signaling her gratitude. Her backup, Ira, saw her and remained still. Kaz gripped something in the demon’s boot. Some kind of scroll. She moved quickly and quietly with her prize back toward the edge of the encampment and the tree in which Ira was perched. The archer dropped from a low branch, the only sound a barely audible flutter from her dark cloak.

“Good shooting, as always.” Kaz said through a slight smile.

“It’s nearly dawn. Let’s get back with what we have.”

Ira looked toward the tree line and slung her bow on her back.

“I don’t have enough arrows to deal with all of them once the dead are discovered. Come on."

They set off, slipping through shadows when possible and stepping lightly, hunched and hurried, when exposed. It wasn’t long before the bodies were discovered and the alarm raised. There was a sound of many wings beating against the air as the enemy began to spread in every direction, searching for the intruders.

Kaz and Ira were making good time, but day was coming and the light would betray them to the searching eyes high above. They had to move faster. There were patrols everywhere. Sneaking past them in the dark of night was simple enough, but this wouldn’t be so easy. Ahead, a small group of sentries stood guarding a smaller forward garrison with weapons at the ready. They hadn’t yet noticed the two dark forms moving swiftly toward them.

“We’ll have to break our way through’ whispered Ira, ducking behind a large rock.

Kaz nodded once and moved ahead. They both knew what to do. Just as the nearest sentry began to turn its exposed back away from Kaz’s approach, she leapt forward, thrusting her stiletto into its back in the same instant that a flit of arrows landed in the chest and neck of another. They fell without any screams, but there were too many eyes in the vicinity. More of the enemy filed in, neither raising an alarm in full nor giving the two Wilders a chance to escape.

The Hypogeans fell in ones and twos as they came to investigate the suspicious noises, but finally the assassins were found out and what remained of the garrison rushed out to encircle the embattled pair. Ira’s quiver was empty. A few of the enemy took some haphazard shots with their strange weapons. A short, black bolt buried itself in the flesh just below Ira’s shoulder. Kaz put one of her daggers in Ira’s good hand, giving her a resolute look. If they were to die here, they would do so under a mountain of slain adversaries. The captain of the garrison raised a gnarled hand and roared the order to charge. Kaz grimaced, Ira snarled, and both raised their blades, bracing themselves for the tide of violence ahead.

The underbrush in the nearby woods burst open, and a group of Wilders with graceful bows and slender blades jumped forward. The Dusk Watch. A powerful voice rose above the surprised shouts of the Hypogeans.

“Charge! Breach their lines!”

Lyca sat astride a beautiful white doe, loosing arrows in rapid succession. It seemed that she hardly aimed before letting them fly. They glowed a bright white, and left silvery trails behind them as they arced toward their victims, each one finding the heart of its target. The enemy was in disarray. Some rushed forward, hoping to score a fatal strike on the two they had thought done for. Others turned to meet the new threat from the trees. The fighting was ferocious. There were screams and the sound of blades ringing against one another, grunts of surprise and pain, and always the silver streaks following Lyca’s arrows to visit destruction on the invader. Even so, there were too many for the Dusk Patrollers to maintain the upper hand much longer. Lyca rode forward alone, now firing at foes only a few paces away. Her mount jumped through an opening carved through the enemy ranks. She pulled the wounded Ira, now pale from blood loss, atop the doe. She shot a quick look at Kaz without slowing her fire.

“Let’s go home.”


Master And Apprentice

N troop 4.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Bonus
Use Two Heroes HP +1200

HP +1.00%

Use Two Of The Following : Elite+

Brutus

Khasos

ATK +150

ATK +5.00%

Use Two Of The Following : Legendary+

Brutus

Khasos

ATK +250

LL+15

ATK +10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

The crack of the whip sounded through the stretched hides of the tipi encampment. Khasos the shepherd was being punished by his master, a centurion general known for his pettiness and proclivity for making life hard for his subordinates. The general hadn’t had a good fight in a while, so the shepherd’s chances of surviving this incident were slim. According to the customs of the Maulers, the centurion was well within his rights to snuff out the very life he’d made so miserable for so long.

The general wouldn’t miss a chance to add insult to injury, and had opted to mete out the punishment in front of a group of distinguished guests, recently arrived from inspecting another encampment much like this one. Among them was Brutus himself, the closest thing the Maulers had ever had to a king. He sat in a place of honor, a great rough hewn throne of sorts that disrupted the circular seating arrangement by its sheer size, not to mention his own mass and presence. In the middle of the circle, Khasos hunched. He wore a hate-filled sneer and stole furtive glances at the great warriors and generals surrounding him.

His master addressed the guests.

“This one has lost my sheep! This one has squandered our resources! He blames the storm! Tell me, is the one who cannot combat the storm one worthy of our tribe? Is he worthy of the very blood that flows through his veins? Every breath he takes is stolen! Every morsel he consumes is wasted for not going to nourish his betters! This one will burden us no longer!” The centurion had a commanding voice and put on a good show, but whenever he made eye contact with Brutus he would invariably avert his gaze, looking to-ward the others leaning forward in their seats.

Scars and fresh lacerations criss-crossed the back and arms of the shepherd, marking the whip’s passing. Every breeze that danced over the new wounds was agony. He raised his head and uttered a challenge. Around the circle, jaws dropped. Only Brutus seemed unsurprised. The shepherd had demanded his right, as a Mauler, to combat. The hulking centurion flashed a look of indignant fury before regaining his composure. He roared laughter, and Brutus noticed his honor guard were quick to follow suit. He looked down at Khasos with a wide, predatory smile, and gave him a mockingly friendly slap on the back. Khasos winced and prepared for death.

The Centurion began to throw back one horn of ale after another, toasting his guests and then his ranking warriors. He jested about the fight to come and Khasos’ small stature. He talked about the ignominy of a task such as shepherding and wondered at one’s ability to fail such a simple job. Deep in his cups, he began to reminisce about foes felled and bathes won, occasionally going back to compare those worthy opponents with the pitiable wretch before him now. Khasos stood through all of this, seething and quietly shouldering the pain to his body and dignity.

Eventually even many of the guests were noticeably inebriated. They began to call for the fight to begin. They jeered and chant-ed, not really observing what exactly was transpiring. Brutus had taken only as much drink as custom demanded, and he straightened in his chair as he watched the preparations for the combat. He saw a feared but overconfident general, stumbling in a semblance of a straight line. He was unfocused and dragged his sword along behind him, the point scoring a deep groove in the earth. He saw a frightened but furious young Mauler, tense with un-released energy, his gaze sharp and steady. A warrior had begrudgingly handed him a pair of throwing axes, the only weapons available that fit Khasos’ size. He hefted them, feeling their weight, and took a few practice swings. A few among Brutus’ generals noticed his look, and began assessing the situation themselves. It might not be so one-sided after all.

The master raised his sword high above his head, swinging it in slow circles as he spoke. “This one wants a fight, but he’s gonna get an execution one way or another! C’mere little shepherd!”

He charged heavily toward a terrified Khasos, who managed to snap out of his paralysis just in time to avoid the first slow arc of the blade. The general re-gained his balance and executed a careless backhand swipe at Khasos’ belly. This one he avoided more easily, and seemed to remember the axes he held in either hand. Breathing quickly, the diminutive Mauler circled, watching the general’s movements, gauging his re-action times. He made as if to throw the axe in his left hand, and the general’s sword was raised to deflect it. Everyone watching saw that the general’s reaction was sloppy and slow. The crowd quieted and some of the warriors began to show worried expressions. The general roared.

“Throw it then, coward! Throw your lithe axe and I’ll catch it with my teeth! I’ll hold you down and skin you with it!”

With a soft grunt Khasos did just that. The axe flew at the general’s leg. He was now focused enough to parry, but not sober enough to maintain his balance after doing so. In an instant, Khasos was on him. The shepherd-turned-gladiator bared his teeth. Brutus saw a grimace overflowing with anger, fear, and determination. The other axe stayed in hand, and with a savage downward stroke, found the general’s neck. A crimson spray painted the former shepherd’s face. Complete silence gripped the circle. The general straightened and stepped backward, his hand on his neck, blood pouring from between his fingers. He looked around at his warriors, confused, searching for an answer as to what was happening and then he redirected his attention to Khasos. “You…you weren’t supposed to.” He sat suddenly in the bloody dirt. “You aren’t allowed. You’re…” His eyes closed, and he slumped forward. The flies were already starting to buzz around his body.

Brutus rose and walked toward the shocked Khasos, picking up the thrown axe and offering it to him handle first. The victor looked up at him, just as scared now as he had been earlier.

“You used these well, but you still need training. You’ll come with us when we leave tomorrow.”


Arcanists Union

N troop 5.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Hero 3 Bonus
Use Three Heroes DEF +25

DEF +1.00%

Use Three Of The Following : Elite+

Silvina

Vedan

Isabella

HP +1600

HP +5.00%

Use Three Of The Following : Legendary+

Silvina

Vedan

Isabella

ATK +250

CRIT +15

ATK +10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

Pallid moonlight weakly illuminated the city. The air was filled with the pitter patter of the rain and the muffled footsteps of vagrants shuffling nervously in alleyways. Within a narrow tucked away lane were two small figures that looked to be no more than 10 years old. Their faces were pale from the icy rain and wind, their clothes disheveled and scattered with holes. They huddled together for any warmth they could find as they passed the night alone. Silvina and Isabella had come to the city after being forced from their homes, feared and misunderstood by their fellow villagers. This was their new home, the lawless backstreets, rife with traffickers and bandits.

It had already been two days since their last meal but Silvina, being the older of the two knew she had to do something for her younger sister although she herself was not in great condition. She struggled to pull herself up, steadying her body on the wall against the momentary bout of dizziness. If she didn’t find food now they wouldn’t be able to hold on for much longer. She instructed Isabella to wait for her but as she did so her words were cut off by a hoarse, raspy voice that uttered… “Boss, over ‘ere, these two will fetch us a good price”. Isabella’s eyes tracked the source of the sound. Locating the man, she saw he was accompanied by two others, they were all middle aged and possessed an unkind glint in their eyes as they slowly walked towards the two girls, with both rope and bags in hand.

“We’re in luck today, lads. We won’t have to travel too far tonight. The old crones will probably take these two young ‘uns off our hands for a pretty penny” the man said, punctuating the remark with a sharp laugh. Isabella realized what was happening, she slipped a slim dagger from her sleeve and clenched it with grubby hands. She held it at arms length as the men approached. She couldn’t tell if the trembling in her hand was due to fear or the cold. Ever since the incident that caused she and her sister to be driven from their home, evil had followed her little sister, Isabella, and she always kept the dagger close, hoping she’d never need it.

When the men noticed what Silvina was holding in her hands they were taken aback briefly before succumbing to a round of wheezing laughter. What could she possibly do to them? Their laughter was suddenly cut off by the sound of a horse neighing. An immaculate carriage cut through the drifting drizzle and fog smothering the streets. The cart came to a halt at the alley’s entrance. Through the gloom, the silhouette of the aristocrat of the aristocrat passenger could be seen pressing to the window, apparently absorbed by the scene playing out in the alley. He took no interest in the rights and wrongs of the situation. There was little difference between the brigands with the ropes and the children with the knife. They were the underclass. Too rough and uncultured to be considered fully human, they nonetheless provided interesting diversions from time to time. The drama in their existences pantomimed the real issues sometimes faced by their betters.

“Someone’s coming” a thin ruffian stuttered to a stocky balding man, who appeared to be the leader. The stocky man glared at the cart and gave and spoke in an arrogant tone. “What’re you afraid of? This is our turf! Ain’t nobody who’d dare meddle with us. Now stop wasting time and grab the girls!” Silvina bit her bottom lip and grimaced, staring the man down with a look of defiance in her eyes. Her grip on the stiletto tightened. Why wasn’t the man in the carriage doing anything? The thin man meekly nodded in agreement and picked up the bag and opened it up wide as he walked towards Silvina. The stress and fear conspired with her hunger, blurring her vision. The dagger dipped toward the ground as she struggled to maintain consciousness.

The thin man saw this opportunity and swiftly moved in for the capture. With the last light of her awareness, she watched him. She saw the mouth of the heavy burlap sack, and in that darkness, she saw not only her own death but the death of her little sister. Something in her flared up and, coming out of lull, she lashed out with the knife, savagely opening the veins in the hand of her would-be abductor. He shouted in surprise, pain, and fear. Lashing out with his good hand, he struck her to the ground.

Isabella screamed as she saw her older sister hitting the cobblestone. She felt that frightening sensation returning, the one that had accompanied the light that destroyed the bandits in her home village. Even had she known how to suppress it, she was too frightened and incensed at the moment to do so. The green light began pouring from her eyes. The assailant froze, too terrified to scream. A plaintive rasp escaped his lips as his skin withered and turned brittle, his eyes sinking deep into his skull and darkening, his hair turning white and falling out.

The two remaining thugs were too afraid to move. They stood in shock, looking at the desiccated corpse that moments ago had been their accomplice. The man in the carriage, however, had a very different reaction. After witnessing the events that had just unfolded, his eyes were gleaming with boundless excitement. He leapt from his carriage and walked into the alley, drawing a slender sword from a sheath attached to his hip. The two men still stood there in a daze, barely registering his approach. Before they could react or say anything to the oncoming man — death. A clean kill. One swing, two heads. He nonchalantly flicked away the viscera and posted himself before the cowering street children.

Silvina pulled herself up from the wet ground, once again hiding her stiletto. She stood silently, but vigilantly staring at the man who stood before them. He put his right hand on his chest and gave a courteous bow. “Please allow me to introduce myself, I am Count Vedan, it’s my pleasure to be acquainted. I saw your special abilities, I too have a natural aptitude for the arcane. With your willingness, I can guide you both, teach you how to control your feelings and emotions, and in turn your powers, and you’ll never have to feel scared or alone again. I will wait in the coach for your answer.” He turned and walked back toward the carriage.

Silvina didn’t full understand the weight and implications of the Count’s words, but hearing that he could protect her lithe sister, her decision was already made. She grabbed Isabella’s hand as they both headed towards the waiting transport.


The Dragon Slayers

N troop 6.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Hero 3 Bonus
Use Three Heroes DEF +25

HP +1.00%

Use Three Of The Following : Elite+

Saveas

Vurk

Numisu

CRIT +15

ATK +5.00%

Use Three Of The Following : Legendary+

Saveas

Vurk

Numisu

HP +2000

DODGE +30

HP +10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

The Hall of the Hunt is a raucous place, even by Mauler standards. A great many trophies adorn the walls, heads and claws and fangs of terrible and exotic beasts illuminated by flickering braziers. The smell of roasting meats hangs heavy in the smoky air as horns of dubious brews are passed about, tales of adventure and bloodshed are shouted into eager ears, and challenges are made and accepted. Tonight though, the hall was eerily subdued. The Maulers, representing near every tribe in the land, exchanged oddly reserved remarks and glanced frequently toward the massive doors that marked the entrance. There had been word of something big.

There were a few scattered cries of surprise from outside and the doors burst open, a mud and blood-splattered trio framed at its center. The assembled Maulers rose unconsciously, lowering their mismatched containers of flamewine and grub mead. Numisu, Vurk, and Saveas took in the scene before them, basking momentarily in the awe of their peers. There was a pause, an expectant silence during which only the crackling of the flames made a sound, and then Saveas thrust aloft the trophy he carried. A fang, equal to his forearm in length and still darkly bloody at the root. The hall erupted into a roar of approval. Tonight was going to be good.

Numisu stepped forward. "My totems warned me of a great trouble in the Bone Glade. The threat that turns hunters into prey. Even the most skilled among our tribes would be in great danger to seek the creature. It was these two who rose to the task. I have witnessed their courage and prowess, and I have brought them here. They shall be honored in the Hall of the Hunt!"

"The thing from the stories! Did they kill it?" A voice blurted from the back of the crowd.

"Indeed we have. But it was mostly this crazy goat!" Replied Vurk, leaning with his arm on Saveas' shoulder. His body weary, but his tongue alive as ever.

Numisu raised both hands, arms spread wide in the air. "The new Wild Slayers stand before you!"

The hall erupted again in cheers and roars as frothing drinks were thrust into the air, sloshing out over the mass of elated hunters. Only a few in a generation could be granted the immense honor of being named Wild Slayers. Just to be present in the Hall when this occurred was cause enough for celebration. The three new arrivals were given hearty slaps on the back, pungent draughts pushed into their hands as they were ushered roughly toward the place of honor.

The story of the hunters' quarry had become legendary over recent years. A dragon had settled in the Bone Glade, cunning as it was monstrous. Campsites were found empty and ravaged with only the trails of blood leading back into the glade as clues. Hunting parties and storied warriors alike went into the glade seeking the beast and never returned. It became a feared place where only the bravest and most reckless would journey.

The crowd was gathered around the three weary hunters, pressed in tight, they listened with rapt attention to the recounting of the kill. Saveas was his usual quiet self, but Vurk was reveling in the glory, standing and gesturing with every word. Numisu simply looked on with a wry expression and took long sips of something that bubbled and smoked.

Vurk had the audience hanging on his every word. "I trusted my gut, you see. My hunter's instinct. It's not something you can learn. It guides you like the wind pushes the grass. I knew where to find the beast because I could feel where it had gone..."

Saveas interrupted. "Numisu's totems showed us the beast's nest. The trail of splintered trees also helped."

Vurk nodded. "Aye! The totems showed you what I suspected. Lucky for us I picked up the trail. We tracked it back to its home using every bit of cunning we could muster. I was glad to have this ferocious goat behind me."

Numisu cocked his head. "I was watching from afar. The totems showed me your progress. Was it not Saveas who led the way?"

Vurk shrugged. "Sure maybe the lad ranged ahead from time to time. These things get mixed up on the hunt. I was focused on our quarry, see. Either way, Saveas was a top notch helper."

Saveas gave his companion a sidelong glance and silently sipped from his horn of mead.

Vurk continued. "The thing was monstrous! We came upon it undetected, but it didn't go down without a fight. When it roared the leaves shook from the trees, and the blasts of air from the beating of its wings nearly sent us flying. Its fangs were twice the length of my own body!"

Saveas furrowed his brow, looking down at the fang he still held in his hand. It was massive, to be sure, but failed to live up to the description.

"We dodged, ducked, and rolled! Swipes of claws and gnashing of jaws alike narrowly missing us! The thing's hide was too tough for our weapons to get through. Our steel was going blunt on its scales with each strike! Just when we thought it couldn't get more dire, the monster started spewing poison at us!"

Numisu gave a questioning look at Saveas. The hunter leaned in and said softly, "Spittle."

"I'd hit the thing with every bolt I had and nothing was sticking! It was the goat who hit the weak spot. A leap straight at the creature! I thought he was going to jump straight down its throat! Well, the dragon thought so too. It lunged up with its jaws wide open, ready for a snack. What'd it get? A spear through the eye! I could hardly believe what I'd seen. Here I'd been shooting for the heart, shooting for the neck, shooting everywhere but the eye, and then this one comes and takes all the glory!" Vurk punched Saveas' shoulder for emphasis.

Saveas downed the rest of his drink and said "No, friend. Not all the glory. Those bolts from your crossbow hurt the creature. They angered it and made it reckless. You darting in and out from under its wings had it looking for you instead of devouring me. If you hadn't been there, I'd be dinner now."

Vurk paused for a moment, a smile slowly forming. "Well then. I suppose that's true for both of us. It's settled then! We share in the glory. Barkeep! Flamewine!"


The Wrathful Two

Wrathful Two.png
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Bonus
Use Two Heroes HP+1,200

HP+1.00%

Use Two of the following: Elite+

Grezhul

Thoran

Acc+30
Use Two of the following: Legendary+

Grezhul

Thoran

HP+2,000

DEF+50

HP+10.00%

DEF+10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

Crows are circling above a graveyard, lured in by some foul prize. Every so often a lone call from one of the birds adds gloom to an already dreary scene. In the middle of the grounds, an arcane symbol rests on the ground like an angry wound. It is drawn in blood and strewn randomly with bits of bone, the source of which is unknown. At the center of the symbol, a body. For the most part it could be any old corpse, but one thing in particular sets this one apart- it wears a crown.

Grezhul stood before the symbol he had drawn. His blank eyes betrayed no sentiment, but his actions were born of admiration and duty. He had been charged with protecting the king, and yet here the king lay. Butchered in his own hall, by his own brother. Aye, the brother had paid though. Grezhul had made it cost the traitors dearly before they overwhelmed him, and now he was walking the earth again as a graveborn. The king though… he was another story. The fact that Grezhul even had to perform this ritual meant that he had failed. Even so, he had to do something.

He said the strange words he’d memorized and thrust his swords into the earth inside the symbol. Its lines began to glow softly, causing flickering shadows to dance on the bones and headstones. The glow started at the outside edges of the symbol and slowly made its way toward the center and the body resting there. Blood crackled and turned black, emitting an acrid stink.

Staring at the corpse in the circle, Grezhul remembered his time with King Thoran. Though the memories had not come through the veils of death and resurrection unscathed, some specifics still held fast, and the overarching emotions associated with the memories had gone unharmed. He wondered absently if the memories would continue to deteriorate, as they do in life. His oath, though… The promise he made to protect the king would never slip away. It was the source of the duty to which he rededicated himself daily.

A memory swam into his mind. He was seven. Still young, but old enough to say the words according to tradition. His father stood before him, wearing almost the same set of armor he wore now, and beamed. He was clearly pleased that his son would follow in his footsteps as a Praetorian. It was the family tradition that while younger sons may pursue any profession, the eldest must always join the Praetorians. He said the words, swearing an oath to the king, but he wouldn’t understand what it all really meant until years later.

Nine years later, he is standing nervously near the back of the throne room. It is the annual Oath Of the Praetorians, a ceremony in which the young men in training are selected for duty and allowed to become full-fledged Praetorians, and boys are brought before the king to say the oath and be taken in for their years-long wardship. The shining, flawless armor he wears doesn’t feel real. As he steps forward to accept his sword, he is in a daze.

Hardly a season after his initiation and he is along for one of the king’s hunts. These are usually relaxed and safe but enemies will occasionally use an opportunity like this to strike. He spots the man crouching in the boughs an instant before the arrow is loosed. Leaping in front of the king, he takes the arrow himself. It is poorly placed and not much more than a scratch, but the poisons coating it are potent. For days he is bedridden, on the brink of death. The palace healers attend him nonstop, and Thoran himself visits daily, urging the young praetorian to fight through it. Eventually, he does.

“Ughhh”

A rasping sound came from the center of the pentagram, bringing Grezhul out of his reminiscence. The shaking husk of King Thoran slowly stood, finding his balance. His eyes opened and his brows furrowed as a sneer formed on his cracked lips. He radiated spite and hatred. Grezhul placed his hand over the pommel of one of the swords and knelt, bowing his head before his liege. It was time to serve the king.


Wisdom and Hope

N troop 8.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Bonus
Use Two Heroes HP+1,200

HP+1.00%

Use Two of the following: Elite+

Tasi

Ulmus

Attack+150

Attack+5.00%

Use Two of the following: Legendary+

Tasi

Ulmus

Def+100

Crit+10 Def+15.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

Ulmus is one of the eldest and wisest treants in the forest. He is well-known for his calm demeanor, but for a time there seemed to be something amiss. Something was perturbing him. He began to have a recurring nightmare that lasted for months. In this dream he was unable to move while some sort of defiling evil permeated his surroundings, moving closer and closer to him with each passing night. He could still feel the sting of the putrid thing's scent when awakening. While seeking help and answers, Ulmus discovered that the other treants were suffering the same affliction.

Another night, and drowsiness overcomes Ulmus as he struggles to stay awake. He knows he's fighting a losing battle. He knows the nightmare is waiting to envelop him yet again. This time in his nightmare, the soil is completely spoiled and a wretched black claw floats in front of his eyes, menacing him from the darkness. Ulmus can only flinch as he finds himself locked in place. He watches the claw with a helpless sort of dread as it inches ever closer, when suddenly the scene is disrupted by a flash of blue light. The claw cracks and retracts, shriveling in the wake of the light.

He didn't fall into another nightmare again for many nights. The blue mist would appear in his dreams, soothing him into a restful night. However, as time passed, the blue mist became fleeting, and the evil decay once again rooted itself in his slumber. While once again confronting his nightmare, Ulmus heard an unfamiliar voice. "Someone... please help me." a waning feminine voice could be heard coming out of the blue mist.

"Who goes there? How can I help?" Ulmus responded.

"My name is Tasi, I am the fairy of dreams. A strong evil has reared its ugly head once again. I was able to prevent its pervasion for a short time, but it grows strong. I am not longer able to purge the darkness from dreams. Please, go to the spring of life and call forth the summoning of my spirit."

Ulmus awoke and sprung immediately into action, making his way toward the spring of life, deep within the forest. It was said that Dura created the miraculous spring as a parting gift for the Wilders. Ulmus was meticulous in performing the ritual, and he had brought good offerings. From the corner of his eye he saw a brilliant, luminous flower bud appear beside the spring. From withing its brightness Ulmus was able to discern a beautiful face, it was then that he heard a familiar voice.

"Thank you, Ulmus."

The bud burst open and from within it, she stood upright. Tasi stretched, unfolding her beautiful wings. They gently flickered like a butterfly's. "We finally meet in your realm. Thank you for calling forth my spirit. Thank you for gifting me with such a beautiful body." She smiled radiantly, illuminating the surrounding Dark Forest.

Since Tasi's arrival into the physical realm, she stuck by Ulmus' side, fighting for the forest against the encroaching darkness that so doggedly clawed its way into the green lands. The southern woods had already succumbed to the evil, and the war had come to their doorstep.

The first battle went surprisingly well for the defenders, but they had only won the day, not the war. Moreover, the victory they had achieved that day was just a minor setback for the demonic invaders. In the fighting, Ulmus sustained a slight injury. He couldn't have known how serious it actually was. It wasn't until a few days later that Ulmus began to realize the gravity of the situation. The enemy must have used some kind of concoction on their blades. Some unsavoury union of poison and curse. A rot had set in and he became entangled and locked down by the rotting ground. Not even the spring of life seemed able to undo this blight.

"Wake up, Ulmus! Wake up!" Tasi yelled frantically as she sat by his side, fearing that he was already too far gone.

She considered simply putting the old treant out of his misery, but even this small kindness was made impossible by the corruption, The same rot that rooted Ulmus to the ground and weakened his mental state also strengthened his physical resistance. She used the last of her energy that remained after the fighting to enter the dreams of the great elder, Arden, calling for him to help. She then evaporated into a haze of blue mist as she entered the rotting heart of Ulmus, to seek him out in his dream and see what still remained of him.

Tasi found Ulmus' weakened spirit wandering the darkness of his dream. Though frightened, a coherent Ulmus still lived on inside. Tasi had found her friend, but after tapping all of her energy to enter the dream she faced the same problem as he. She would also be trapped in this shell, unable to communicate with the outside world. A prisoner trapped in a rotten cell. Luckily for the two of them, Arden heeded Tasi's dream message. After he had exorcised the blight from Ulmus, The treant searched day and night in search of his beloved Tasi.

"Where are you, Tasi?"

Tears streamed down Ulmus' face. He then noticed one of a small blue bud growing on one of his branches. A familiar color. Ulmus felt elated.

It didn't bloom immediately as it had before, in fact it didn't seem to grow much at all. Every day he tended to it, making sure it was well protected from the elements. He waited countless days and nights to see that face again.

"Thank you, Ulmus" she murmured.

"Welcome back, Tasi" Ulmus softly replied.

They had been united once more.


Castellans

N troop 9.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Bonus
Use Two Heroes Acc+15
Use Two of the following: Elite+

Estrilda

Thane

Crit+10
Use Two of the following: Legendary+

Estrilda

Thane

HP+2,000

ACC+30 HP+10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

Estrilda would often sneak out into the formerly stately gardens surrounding the Rayne estate. They had been in a state of disrepair for some time. She would play with her elder brothers and cousins, but those brothers and cousins, the boy anyway, had all perished in a battle that was catastrophic for House Rayne.

Sometimes in big groups. The voices of those children had long been blown away. Estrilda marveled that the condition of her family had come to match that of the garden.

He stood at the center of the garden near a dry fountain. Thane. His single arm held ready for the sword strapped to his waist. "Teacher!" She bounced toward him, waving with rapid little motions. He gave her a curt nod and unsheathed his blade.

Estrilda drew her own in response automatically. She wasn't conscious of the steel leaving its sheath. They began to spar, filling the unkempt gardens with the ringing of blades. Every evening they would meet and work on her swordsmanship.

Though Estrilda had vowed to reclaim her family's lost honor without a male heir, they had decided to keep their arrangement secret. It had taken months of constant badgering to convince him to instruct her, but finally he acquiesced, and truth be told, it seemed as if he was happy to do so.

She progressed quickly from a skinny, clumsy girl to a quick, efficient fighter with flawless instincts. Feeling that her skills were plateauing after years of practice, she was determined to defeat Thane in their next bout.

Thane had more experience in his one remaining arm than Estrilda had in both of hers, and everything she knew at the point had been taught by Thane himself. She had never been able to defeat him. He was careful and moved only as much as he need.

She was a storm of blows. Flurries of strikes almost anyone else would have found impossible to parry. But he did, and as he did he watched and waited. Every time it ended the same. There, a weakness. His blade at her throat. Another loss. She was frustrated.

"You have a lot of courage, but that's not always going to win the fight." He grumbled.

"How am I ever going to be good enough? My father was the most renowned general this family had produced in generations."

"You don't need to be that." He sighed. "You just need to be the best that you can."

"Why does someone with your skill settle for being cooped up in the castle grounds? Surely you're capable of greater things..."

"Your training is over." He turned away, towering his head. "There's nothing else I can teach you." It was true. He was amazing with a sword, but he was only one man. Anything else she wanted to know had to be learned outside of her family's holdings.

She left it at that. Sheathing her sword, she gave him a quick bow and left the garden. Thane was reminded of his old friend, Baden. He had always seen his old friend in Estrilda's eyes. It was like he was looking out at him.

Thane remembered the sacrifice his friend had made, a sacrifice he would continue to repay.


The Lightbringers

N troop 10.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Bonus
Use Two Heroes HP+1,200

HP+1.00%

Use Two of the following: Elite+

Belinda

Lucius

Def+50

Def+5.00%

Use Two of the following: Legendary+

Belinda

Lucius

HP+2,000

Attack+250

HP+10.00%

Attack+10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

A sharp grinding sound echoed from the doorway to the sprawling manor. As the immense door was slowly pushed open, the stench of blood wafted out. Belinda and Lucius frowned and then nodded at one another as a reminder to remain vigilant. Only a few days prior, they were asked to visit the manor by the elders of the Temple of Light to investigate. The owner of the manor is the Earl of Oye, who ten years ago retired to a peaceful life here after fulfilling his mission. Not long ago, he received a secret report, claiming that an evil presence lurked within these walls.

As Belinda and Lucius searched the inner realms of the manor, the smell of blood became more unbearable. Suddenly they saw bloodstains covering the walls in peculiar patterns. The floor was littered with moldy scrolls written in the language of demons. The entire kingdom had been in a state of panic ever since evil had returned to the world. That is, all apart from cult groups and secret societies, who were spreading messages about doomsday, calling on everyone to give up their religions and sacrifice their souls to demons.

Common people can easily become ignorant, foolish or even insane when their hearts are full of fear or they are led astray by temptation. This makes the need for guidance from devotees of The Light, like Belinda and Lucius, even more pressing.

Their calling is clear: To be like shepherds who lead lost lambs back into the light. They embody what is just and right and hold the scales of good and evil in their hands, leading to either punishment or salvation. They will judge those who commit evil and do wrong in the name of The Order of The Light. As devotees, they must deliver impartial judgment.

Belinda and Lucius heard desperate screams coming from the cellar. They followed the screams down the stairs, lighting candles to find their way. In the dim light they made out an old man hobbled over in the center of the room wearing an evil smile all over his face. He was constantly muttering profanities to himself. Belinda and Lucius quickly discerned that the elderly man was in fact the Earl of Oye.

The elderly man stood over a young girl as she lay helpless on a sacrificial altar. Her throat had been cut open and fresh blood was oozing out.

The candlelight was flickering erratically, and the shadow cast on the wall was not that of the elderly man, but of a demon with large horns and wings extending high above his back. Belinda and Lucius were well aware that the Earl of Oye was demon possessed.

They decided to observe what was going on before taking any action. They noticed a large steel cage in the cellar with boys and girls locked inside cowering. Judging from their clothing, they were most likely the Earl’s children. Some were sobbing while others looked fatigued like lambs waiting to be slaughtered. It was obvious that the Earl was willing to sacrifice his own children to ingratiate the demon and the girl he killed on the altar was most likely one of them.

“Earl of Oye, you are guilty of devil worship and blasphemy. In the name of the Temple of Light, I command that you stop resisting.”

Though Lucius wanted to tear this scoundrel to pieces, he reminded himself that he must not act in anger. As a devotee of The Light, he must uphold righteousness and not act in spite.

The Earl was still muttering as if he was insane.

“They have arrived and nothing will stand in their way. All must bow down at their feet.”

“Nothing can save them now! Their souls have been taken over by demons.”

Belinda gasped as she placed her staff in front of her.

“We must eliminate him before he does something even worse.”

She closed her eyes and recited a majestic prayer and her staff became covered in light. As the gentle light shone over the Earl, he suddenly started to glow as he wailed in the voice of a demon. His body transformed into the likeness of his shadow. Sharp horns appeared and wings rose above his figure. His skin turned deep red and the demon who had taken over his soul revealed itself.

Belinda’s staff shined brighter, illuminating every shadow within the hidden corners of the cellar. The children trapped inside the cage were no longer afraid as the divine light shined over them.

The demon was disgusted to see his worst enemy, The Light. He wasn’t going to sit there and do nothing. He worked up all his might and leapt at Belinda. He failed to swipe at her as he was blocked by a shield which stood between them.

The demon bounced right off the shield. Most of the force of the impact was absorbed by the shield as Lucius groaned in agony and refused to concede. He had to protect Belinda and fight against time so that Belinda could expel the demon.

The demon let out a screech. He swiped his claw at Lucius in an attempt to tear him to shreds. But Lucius, with strong conviction, also stood strong in his defense so the demon had no way of getting his claws on Belinda.

“The Divine Light”, Belinda called out as she opened her eyes wide. Rays of divine light showered over the demon’s despicable frame and he began to burn.

“Wretched humans! Everything you do is worthless! You’re nothing more than greedy, selfish cowards! Even if you kill me, there will be many more humans like this ugly, rotting old man who will offer up their souls to us.”

As the demon burned in agony, he continued to ridicule.

Belinda and Lucius watched in silence as the demon was reduced to ashes. The Light could defeat the demon, but they were well aware that the shortcomings of humans would remain and that more would surrender themselves to demons. Belinda and Lucius held firmly to their belief that The Light, as long as it remained, would guide them towards the beautiful side of humanity.


The Bounty Hunters

N troop 11.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Hero 3 Bonus
Use Three Heroes DEF +25

HP +1.00%

Use Three Of The Following : Elite+

Mirael

Raine

Fawkes

CRIT +15

ATK +5.00%

Use Three Of The Following : Legendary+

Mirael

Raine

Fawkes

HP +2000

ACC +30

HP +10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

The patronage at The Rusty Anchor was more rough and tumble than usual. A series of attacks on the nearby port town had discouraged travelers while drawing in nearly every bounty hunter and mercenary for a hundred leagues.

Where there was war, there was chaos, and where there was chaos, there was opportunity. For regular folk, times of war meant times of scarcity, but the motley assembly at the inn relished times like these. Many of them might not survive to year's end, but those who did could look forward to a fat profit.

Of particular interest among the gathered was the bounty board. Here the constabulary would post new bounties. Everything from tracking and retrieving lost livestock to tracking and destroying a lich lord could be tackled for a good coin.

The small crowd perusing the bounties buzzed with discussion about the jobs posted. Two grizzled Dwarves stroked their beards while debating the likelihood of finding a treasure chest supposedly hidden in a nearby mine, suspecting the local lord probably just wanted to send in someone to clear out anything nasty that might have made the mine a home.

A young man heatedly tried to convince his companions that they could take on the bandits who had been stealing from the surrounding villages. The buzz died down as an unlikely-looking woman approached, clad head to toe in black. The others nervously edged out of her way, jostling with their comrades to clear a path.

Mirael smirked, barely noticing the crowd. She scanned the board. Most of the jobs were on the mundane side or too good to be true. She sighed two long threads of smoke from the corners of her mouth and trudged over to the bar and glared over the people seated on the barstools.

No seats left. She snapped her fingers and instantly sparked and pointed to the toe of a man's shoe, which instantly sparked and set alight. When the wearer of the shoe noticed two seconds later he jumped up, hopping around on one foot and trying to kick off the flaming footwear. Mirael sat. "Barkeep! A pint!"

Two shadowy figures seated in a far corner watched with still eyes. They looked to each other. No change came over their faces, no slight twitch of muscle could be observed, but they came to a consensus.

A faint vibration rose from the floor of the building. Again, but stronger. Some noise now accompanied it. Everyone, at this point, was looking around, bewildered except for Mirael and the two figures, now staring across the inn at each other.

The crash that sounded was a tree, having been ripped from the ground like a weed, used as a club to smash another tree in half. A deep, hoarse bellow drowned out the scared noises inside as if it too had been voiced on their side of the wall.

Most of the adventurers began hiding under tables and crowding behind the bar. The three who had been frozen in their odd standoff filed out the door.

The thing before them was something that was, mercifully, extremely rare. It was a vaughur, a gigantic beast from the sea that could, not so mercifully, survive on and travel over land. With their long limbs, they stand as tall as tree men. Their claws and jaws can bisect a horse with a snap. Their eyesight is poor, but their hard carapace is effective protection against small weapons and, strangely enough, magic.

In the water they are docile, living mostly as scavengers, they can easily become enraged on the odd occasion that they are driven to land. The attacks on the port must have driven this one on to the shore. It stood at the edge of the clearing, black claws glistening and clumps of white barnacles shining in the sun on a blue carapace the same color as the sky above it. It let loose an ear-piercing shriek from between countless rows of teeth, and Mirael attacked.

The fireball hit the creature square in the face, but seemed to irritate it further rather than harm it. It rushed toward her and she only just got the flame wall up in time to deter it. It stalked around the burning perimeter, snapping at the flames.

Mirael followed it with her eyes, hands held at the ready, a ring of fire around each. Meanwhile, the shadowy pair circled the scene, taking their positions. The woman stood well back, taking aim as the man crept low and almost imperceptibly slow toward the monstrosity.

When the man reached a certain point near the beast and his stealth become more likely to become compromised, the woman began firing. The shots were as regular as they were precise. Most of the rounds glanced off the carapace or lodged in it, causing no harm, but a few hit relatively softer joints and drew a thick, greenish blood.

The vaughur bellowed again with a screech that made Mirael wince and turned toward this new threat. Just as it was steadying itself for a charge, the man closed with the beast, rushing in silently behind it and placing his left hand on the creature's leg.

The thing immediately went silent, its black eyes clouding over as it went slack. Then man's flesh on his hand and arm was glowing an eerie blue, and it seemed to ripple. When he took his hand away, a blacked pit was forming on the creatures's leg, dark tendrils of color spreading from it, widening as the edges of the mark flaked and fell away like ash.

The creature's eyes became clear again and it gave a sharp barking kind of call, swinging one massive claw downward. The man rolled away just in time and began to run. The man rolled away just in time and began to run. The beast pursued, slowed by the rapidly spreading corruption and the fresh flurry of bullets sinking into its joints and shell.

Finally, a swooping gout of flame hit it from the side, causing it to stumble and collapse. This time, the fire caught along the corroded edges of the corruption. The carcass produced an inky black smoke.

"Why did you come out to fight?" Asked the woman.

"Why were you watching me?" Asked Mirael.

"Because we saw the same thing in you that you saw in us. I'm Raine, and he's Fawkes, and we're looking for a third. We were thinking maybe a fire witch."

Mirael inspected her fingernails. "Well, I was thinking that I could use a couple of tough types around to take on the boring jobs. Sure. Why not?"

Raine smiled. She knew what Mirael was really saying. Fawkes, as usual, said nothing. Raine placed her hand on Mirael's shoulder. "Welcome to the team."


The Sisterhood

N troop 12.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Bonus
Use Two Heroes HP+1,200

HP+1.00%

Use Two of the following: Elite+

Ankhira

Safiya

DEF +50

DEF +5.00%

Use Two of the following: Legendary+

Ankhira

Safiya

ATK +250

DEF +250

HP+10.00%

ATK +10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

She had never imagined this could come to pass. Driven from her newly acquired throne, the young queen Safiya fled the lands of the Sphinx with the few followers who had been able to escape with her. Night after night she journeyed, hiding away for a few fretful hours of sleep during the day.

She used her obfuscation magic to cover her tracks, but she had to get far enough away that none of her own people would ever happen to chance upon her. Simply being seen by the wrong set of eyes could mean her death.

Eventually the land became dotted with the months of caverns. It seemed like the dark openings yawned in every ravine and hillside, and occasional strands of wispy web drifted in the breeze. This had to be the land of the Arachin.

Unwilling to go into the infamous tunnels herself, she assigned a different entrance to each of her score of devotees. With a wave of her most powerful spell of suggestion, the wary Sphinx were finally willing to enter the feared tunnels of the Arachin and seek out their equally feared leader, Ankhira, the young Matriarch.

One by one, her followers returned. Each was escorted by at least a few of the fearsome spider people, some coming with large, excitably curious groups. They surrounded the deposed queen, wanting to get a look. It was obvious to everyone from her bearing and presence that she was indeed royalty, and the Arachin maintained a respectful distance.

A murmur rose through the crowd at the approach of the last of Safiya's followers. Behind him marched a contingent of unusually large Arachin soldiers, two bearing flags with strange symbols. In the center of the formation was Ankhira, an imposing figure herself.

Once again, Safiya felt worried and unsure. If these people were anything like in the rumors, she could end up paying for this summit with her life.

"I was told that the queen of the Sphinx was here to see me, but doesn't a queen usually travel a little more comfortably than this?" Safiya bristled at the insult, but maintained her composure. If she was going to turn this situation around she would have to stay calm.

"Queens in exile can't afford the same luxuries as those who still maintain their rightful place." She said through a tight smile. "But we can repay your hospitality tenfold, if the Arachin kind enough to grant us refuge." The venomous matriarch responded to the claim with a bemused look.

"How do you propose to repay us? My people have only ever sought one kind of payment." An odd, clicking kind of laughter rose from a few of the assembled spider folk. "We have no need for the things you others use. Our bodies are weapons. We do not farm. We are not merchants. We simply... hunger."

A murmur of approval in the crowd had the hair of every Sphinx present standing on end. "Then let's sate that hunger. Better yet, let's see that your people have more food than you've ever seen."

"What are you proposing? You've already told us that you've been deposed. You want to send us a few scrawny prisoners each year in exchange for help in regaining the throne you lost? We'd be better off just webbing up the lot of you now. It seems a tremendous luxury to feast on another queen. Even one in exile."

Safiya could read between the lines. She knew this was going well because she was still alive. If the matriarch was as uninterested in her proposal as she seemed, the cat folk would already be spider food. She knew that this young ruler couldn't seem weak in front of her followers.

Much like the Sphinx, the Arachin weren't typical Maulers, but the one constant held- The strong ruled. The weak followed. "We can do better than that. The usurpers will only be the first course in a decades long feast, if you can help me."

"Explain, and speak directly. My people dislike following the winding words of your kind, We speak simply here rather than hinting at shadows."

"Your people dislike anything they can't eat" thought Safiya, bowing her head slightly and pressing on. "When the usurpers are brought to justice, we will capture as many as alive as possible. These will be sent to you. I can see no better end for these treacherous rats. And speaking of rats in the more literal sense... there are some rumors that the Arachin have had a bit of a rat problem themselves. Something about some stolen venoms?"

The assembled crowd chittered and hissed their disapproval. "What do you know about that?"

"Very little happens that we don't know about. We Sphinx are a curious and observant people, and we listen closely to everything that transpires around us."

"Yes. It's true. One of the Durri snuck into my own chambers and left with something that belongs to me. We wish to find him, but we seldom range far from our nests."

"Perhaps with some dedicated allies in the wider world, you wouldn't need to leave your nests to project your power. You are a strong people and a force to be reckoned with, but you're hardly involved at all in the greater power structure. We Sphinx serve as advisors and spymasters for half or more of the Mauler tribes already, and many of those are still loyal to me. Allow us to serve you the same way and you'll see your territories and numbers grow. Help me retake my throne and the Arachin will privy to every piece of information that passes through my court. We would be happy to deliver the thief and the stolen items to your doorstep, and who better to catch a rat than a cat?"

Ankhira smiled, satisfied at last with the smug little feline. "Do you hear that, my children? Go clear away the webs from some of the larger chambers. Our guests will need somewhere to stay."


Guardians of the Abyss

N troop 13.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Bonus
Use Two Heroes HP+1,200

HP+1.00%

Use Two of the following: Elite+

Seirus

Gorvo

ACC +30
Use Two of the following: Legendary+

Seirus

Gorvo

HP +2000

DEF +50

HP +10.00%

DEF +10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

Of late, the abyss has called to me with increasing frequency. it tinges my dreams with shadow and tugs at the strings of my sanity. I feel its presence always and though it lie far away in this world, it stays close by in the realms of my psyche. It hungers and waits, and I fear it need not wait long. I thirsted for knowledge, and now that very knowledge is driving me to madness. I write this account in an attempt to convey what I have seen. Consider it a warning. I first heard the rumors of the ancient city of Bonapei in the forbidden library of my mentor, the illustrious adventurer Gretel Hawk. She was in possession of a great number of books, scrolls, and even a handful of stone tablets containing a cornucopia of forgotten knowledge and myths rooted somewhere through the mists of time in truth. To describe Hawk as a presence is an understatement. She radiated mirth and daring in equal measure, having the perspective of a woman who has seen near everything the world contains. It wasn't easy to excite either anger or unease from her, but on the night she found me reading from the weathered scroll by candlelight, I saw her despair.

The mere name, "Bonapei", seemed to drain the light from her eyes. Her features sagged and she bowed her head.

"This is something you don't wish to learn. There is a reason the things kept here are locked away. I pray you will heed this warning, but I know you will not."

She pulled the scroll gently from my hand and held it to the candle's flickering flame. She scrutinized me as it burned and then walked away in silence. I shrugged it off, telling myself that the old woman was overreacting. Either way, it was beyond question that I needed to know. Explorers are driven their whole lives by curiosity. It is our one true motivating force. It was this force that had compelled Hawk to sift through the sands and dig through the soil in every corner of the world, searching for those things which once were. It was this force that brought me to my doom. I scrambled for a quill and parchment and jotted down what I had read in the scroll from memory. I wish now that I hadn't so faithfully reproduced the information therein.

Months later, the merchant ship on which I had procured passage came into sight of land. I had been at sea for ages and was glad to see the smoke from cooking fires rising from near the shore. After being refused multiple times, I found a guide from among the native people. Most seemed extremely reluctant to even speak of my destination and would typically answer my question, "Bonapei?", with only a shake of the head before walking away. Even my guide made it abundantly clear that he would take me only to the cliffs from which we could view the city from a distance. He would not tread past this point.

After four days of difficult trekking through thick undergrowth, most of which allowed a line of sight seldom exceeding a few arm lengths, we were presented with a stunning vista. At the edge of the cliff, the lush vegetation thinned out and offered a view of the vast canopy. The guide pointed wordlessly to what I first mistook for a series of hills far away in the sea of green. They were no hills at all, but massive structures rising out of the jungle. It looked as if the stone was being pulled into the ground by the grasping foliage. I pushed my sudden unease to the back of my mind in favor of the excitement I felt at finally looking upon a city few in my land had ever heard of and fewer still believed to exist at all. Smiling toward my guide, I spoke the name of my downfall.

"Bonapei."

He remained expressionless, seeming to stare through me, and held out his hand for payment. The cliffs were treacherous and took more time to descend than I had expected, but two days after my guide's departure I knew I was getting close to the ruins. The occasional carved stones laying half buried in the forest floor became more frequent. As these marks of civilization increased in number, other things became rare. Most of the plants that had impeded our progress before the cliffs didn't grow here at all, and the calls of beast and bird had gone silent. The only life I could discern were the towering eons-old trees, choking vines, and various luminescent fungi.

Eventually I reached what had certainly once been a great and thriving society. The scale of the structures was well beyond those to which I was accustomed, and the stone was fitted so expertly in place that the centuries of neglect had made no change in their placement. The creeping vines ran along every one of the abandoned temples and shrines. After hours of exploration, I heard a distant roar breaking through the silence. Water. Ascending to the summit of one of the nearby temples, I was treated with an awe-inspiring view of the city. Everywhere through the treetops rose the upper sections of the ancient structures. The lines and angles were strange to me; an architectural style belonging to no society current or past of which I was aware. The roar of water emanated from a massive set of falls in what looked to be the city's center. A wide and sluggish river ran among several of the structures, creating artificial islands in the dark swirling flow. The river terminated in the falls that disappeared into a vast opening. Crumbled ruins rimmed the pit. The city hadn't been built around it.

That night, a fierce tremor awakened me from my sleep at the top of the temple. The steady and distant roar of the waterfall had changed in its constancy. I thought at first that the tremors in the earth had disturbed the course of the river and hurriedly grasped my spyglass with the Wilde-crystal lens that would allow me to see clearly in the dark. The only mercy in what followed was my distance from what I saw.

Giant tentacles, far thicker than the trunks of the oldest trees, rose writhing from the abyss. Their number was impossible to ascertain. There were seven, then three, then a hundred, and then two. They wrapped around the ruins circling the abyss like vast snakes, disgorging strange creatures of impossible shape which skittered and oozed into the night. A numbness began clouding my mind. I didn't comprehend what I was seeing, and still I don't.

Suddenly there was a piercing screech unlike any noise I have ever heard, and I saw one of the things go flying, crumpled, back into the abyss. There was a guttural bellow and the sounds of a heavy impact. I was snapped out of my fugue and searched frantically for the source of the new noises. There, among the ruins, was what appeared to be an unusual Wilder of hulking build. It resembled a turtle and carried a massive hammer. With each swing the creatures were cast broken back into the abyss. Through this carnage, the roar of the falls grew ever louder. The river had swelled and now swirled into the abyss from all sides. It seemed the entire city was flooding. A frothing wave moved down the river toward the falls, and at its crest I observed a figure hefting a shining trident. The figure crashed upon one of the tentacles, impaling it with bright steel. Another tremor shook through the jungle as the badly wounded thing retreated. The waters continued to rise and it was here that I lost consciousness, the enormity of what I had witnessed being too much for my mortal mind to bear.

I awakened on the deck of a ship. The crew eyed me warily and explained that I had been deposited there from a great spout of seawater. I believe they would have thrown me overboard had they not feared the repercussion from whatever force had delivered me to their vessel.

Now, back in my old home, I pen this account to warn you about what lies in that place. It has destroyed me already, and I believe it will return to destroy us all. Only the Wilder and the Elemental grant a glimmer of hope for our world.


The Young & Old

N troop 14.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Bonus
Use Two Heroes HP+1,200

HP+1.00%

Use Two of the following: Elite+

Hendrik

Gwyneth

ATK +15O

ATK +5.00%

Use Two of the following: Legendary+

Hendrik

Gwyneth

CRIT +10

ACC +60

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

The garrison was in shambles. Fewer than one in ten of the city's would-be-defenders still stood, most having been felled by the devastating bombardment of the Hypogean siege weapons. Everywhere lay broken and burned bodies. Stones lay in piles that once were walls. The soldiers had been well trained and could have held the walls against an attacking force many times their size, but the walls that had been meant to raise them above the danger had instead become their grave. A brutal, makeshift cairn that buried the men it had killed with its collapse.

Reinforcements were on the way to take the demonic forces in field, but they were still days away. What survived of the city was largely defenseless against the besiegers. An advance party split from the main Hypogean force and approached the capital. The defenders who survived knew that they wouldn't be able to hold out long. They braced themselves, huddling in narrow passages and behind mountains of rubble. As the attackers grew nearer, they began dropping. With not even a heartbeat between them, long, heavy-topped arrows began to fall from the sky, one after another. The demons screamed as their armor was punctured and bones broken.Gwyneth had reached the city ahead of the main reinforcements, and not a moment too soon.

The invaders in the main force saw the advance party begin to fall, then scatter, then retreat, and finally die to the last of them. Orders were shouted and demonic soldiers began preparing the cannons for another salvo. If they couldn't take the city, they would destroy every building and tower, and all the people inside it. In normal circumstances, the tactic would have worked. Here, however, the situation was different. The cannons, which should have been well out of range of the defender's arrows, began to take fire. The demons carrying the ammunition screeched and dropped their cargo as they fell and died. More scrambled to take their place, and with their overwhelming numbers eventually managed to get the cannons firing again as the dead piled up around the weapons.

A captain located the source of the arrows and slowly the cannons swiveled toward the young woman who standing atop a crumbled battlement, directing the massacre of the Hypogean cannoneers. Blasts roared as the gigantic weapons bucked backward, launching shrapnel and explosives at the lone defender. She stood defiantly, knowing that even with all her skill and determination, this was the end. She'd give her life for the city, and try to loose a few final arrows before the enemy's shots landed.

A flaming charge arced downward to destroy the girl utterly, but never found its mark. It connected with two massive shields which slammed together to block it like the gates of a fortress. The blast was deafening, but Hendrik stood firm. Gwyneth took a brief moment to process that she still lived, and offered up a quick salute before returning to her earlier work. When the cannoneers continued to die and the demon commanders saw that there was no getting through the shield, they called a massive retreat. They would fall back out of Gwyneth's range and formulate a new strategy.

Hendrik turned to Gwyneth. "It's going to be impossible to hold the capital against a massed attack. The city itself is secondary. The king is what matters. You will escort the king away from the city at nightfall. I will lead the vanguard that will cover you."

"I won't do it! You need me if you're going to make it out of this. Pick a few others to escort the king and let me go with you to take the fight to them."

"That was an order." Hendrik's voice was stern, but tears were beginning to well in his eyes.

"But...father..."

He sighed deeply and lowered his head. Putting his hands on his daughter's shoulder. He had spent so long trying to keep her away from harm, and now this.

"It's 'commander' right now, soldier. I gave you an order."

She hesitated, pain playing across her face like a storm cloud. "Then I will carry out the mission, commander." She said through clenched teeth, a tear falling to the dust.

"I'm going to make it out of this. I've been doing it for a long time. Keep the king safe... and keep yourself safe, too, whatever you do."

She nodded, fighting the tears that continued to escape.

Near midnight, the few survivors formed into columns. Gwyneth and a few hand-picked guards sat astride their mounts, surrounding the king, as Hendrik took his place at the head of the infanty formation. He didn't know if she could see the nod her gave her. The only thing on his mind as he called out the orders was the safety of the person dearest to him in the world.

"Guard! March!"


Titans of Time

N troop 15.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Bonus
Use Two Heroes ATK +120

ATK +1.00%

Use Two of the following: Elite+

Zolrath

Orthros

HP +1000

ACC +30

HP +5.00%

Use Two of the following: Legendary+

Zolrath

Orthros

HP +2000

ATK +250

HP +10.00%

ATK +10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

1. My name is Zolrath and I am a Hypogean. I have pierced the veil of time and seen countless future realities play out before my eyes. One I find incomparably joyful, and that is the world meeting its beautiful end: all creatures perishing amidst the chaos and void in a destruction even the very Gods cannot escape.

In the Hypogean tongue, we call such an end of days the "Entropic Annihilation."

In my eyes, time itself is like a pool of shifting sands I can push any way I please. How a particular grain swirls in the midst depends entirely on the craft of the one who controls it. Do so well, and even time will flow according to your volition and result in the end you had hoped to see.

2.) I am Orthros and I am a Celestial.

I had once sought to leap over the fences of time to change the past without caring of the consequences. I once used my powers to save the celestial mother, Dura, from an untimely end only to find out the futility of my efforts.

That is how I learned the truth about time: one who arrogantly attempts to alter the past brings down calamity upon their head.

In my eyes, time is just like a wonderfully crafted watch: every component must be calibrated with the finest precision and without the least deviation. Time should never be twisted to merely personal reasons or calamity will intrude upon time's torrential flood.

3.) I am Zolrath and I alter the course of past time.

As a demon, I simply can't resist my destructive nature and hunger for endless chaos in this world. It was only when I tasted the potential futures before me that I finally understood the purpose of my existence.

I've laid an intricate plot to bring about the eventuality I seek. I've been carefully altering different timelines and their consequences, making incisions with the utmost care to build a momentum that will guarantee my vision.

But the future is always in motion. I can't help but notice some uncertain factors that could interfere with my plan.

The being I'm referring to is a divinity with power much like my own. He would rather mend the timelines I have made crooked. I know that we will eventually meet as the most determined foes.

4.) I'm Orthros. I rectify time.

I have a very strong desire, perhaps because of my divine nature, for all flesh to live in this world with some semblance of order and regularity. I only really grasped my duty when I had perceived the true nature of time.

I must straighten crooked timelines. It is only right. It is what I must do to protect the future that the celestial mother, Dura, paid for with her life. I must pick up the pieces from the wreckage and mend time to prevent greater disasters after what I did.

But the future is always changing. I say this because I have sensed a squirming, powerful evil in my destiny, a supreme conspirator of time.

The being I speak of is a demon with powers much like my own who seeks to make all timelines crooked. I know we are destined to meet at some point as arch-enemies.

5.) I am Zolrath. My arch-enemy is Orthros. Many creatures in our world lead busy, meaningless lives, lower-order creatures like the ant: trapped by time, burdened by fate, destined to live out its days an ignorant prisoner. Could they be any more pitiful?

On the other hand, higher-order creatures are free to move outside the strictures of cause and effect and roam freely across the time's dimensions.

Just like Orthros and myself.

Orthros is a formidable opponent, a hunter with as much of a scent for the chase as I. He will hang on every footstep I take across the vast timelines to the very end.

I know that he will not grow weary. We must eventually have our final battle and blot the other out from all timelines once and for all.

6.) I'm Orthros and Zolrath is my arch-enemy.

To a mortal, time is as irreversible as the streams of a river. Mortals are swept along its waters like a lonely canoe, fated to bounce around in its torrents in a predetermined path. They have no power to extricate themselves, so swept up they are into fate's whirlpools.

There are greater beings than they who can afford to ignore such currents or change its direction, even reverse its course.

Just like Zolrath and myself.

Zolrath is a formidable adversary. He is like a crafty fox who has hidden his tracks amidst endless timelines, making it all but impossible for me to give chase.

I know that he is involved in some harrowing conspiracy I can never permit to succeed. My pursuit will surely end in his demise.


The Flame & Spear

N troop 16.jpg
Requirements Hero 1 Hero 2 Bonus
Use Two Heroes ATK +120

ATK +1.00%

Use Two of the following: Elite+

Antandra

Satrana

HP +1000

LL +8

HP +5.00%

Use Two of the following: Legendary+

Antandra

Satrana

HP +2000

ATK +250

HP +10.00%

ATK +10.00%

Union Story

To view the union story, select "expand".

Even after sixty years, I still remember it as if it happened just yesterday.

It was my little sister Sanderra's seventh birthday. That day, our tribe was attacked by the Quicksand Claws.

The Quicksand Claws are the fiercest and most ruthless fiends in the Scorched Expanse. They attacked when our guard was down at mealtime, trampling our tents and killing anyone who put up resistance. They then feasted on our food, slaughtered our livestock and pillaged all our valuables.

Even after sixty years, recalling that day fills me with unbridled terror, fearing for my life, I can't forget it. Before that day, I thought highly of myself, that I was well-prepared to fulfill the role of chieftain. However, when it came to it, I was just a boy, too petrified by fear to move, unable to even lift a weapon... the chieftain's twelve year old son.

Plundering our wealth wasn't enough for them, they also tied and bound the children, abducting them. The skinny children would be sold as slaves, the strong children would be kept and trained as murderous bandits to join the Quicksand Claws. As the sun was setting behind the mountains, the bandits settled down by a well, snoring raucously and full of meat and booze, leaving just two guardsmen to protect their 'spoils of war'.

All night long, the sound of sobbing and crying hung in the air. I was terrified. Whether from fear or anger, I couldn't stop shaking. The anger swept through me, clouding my senses as I couldn't vent my rage, my frustration welling up. Suddenly, I saw confusion in Sanderra's eyes, and forced myself to calm down.

No matter how, I had to find a way to get her out of here.

Just after midnight, a wave of screams erupted through the camp, "Two tents are on fire!" Hurried footsteps echoed out as the bandits rushed to the nearby lake to gather water and put out the fire.

"Damnit! It's still burning, what's going on?" a voice yelled.

The fire was bizarre, no matter how much water they doused it with, it wouldn't be completely extinguished. It would go out in one place only to flare up in another, exhausting the bandits as they rushed around desperately trying to quell the illusive flames.

At just that moment, a melodious laugh rang out from atop of a nearby sand dune. There stood a small girl with a head of fire-red hair, she was lithe and her face was concealed, quickly vanishing into the moonlight. "She started the fires! Get her!" Enraged by her mocking them, some of the bandits gave chase.

Then it hit me, this was it! Now was my chance to escape with Sanderra!

Unfortunately, just as I broke out of my bindings and began to untie Sanderra, I was discovered. Screaming obscenities, the guard took out his whip to lash me. They were watching my every move. All my rage, all my struggling, it was for nothing.

I reflexively shielded Sanderra, holding her to my chest, yet the lashing I was expecting never quite came.

"Andrey!" Sanderra's alarmed voice snaps me out of it. I don't know when this other person came into the room. Just like a leopard, she snuck in silently, cornered the guard and took him down. He bared his teeth angrily but was immediately pierced by a spear, rending him a corpse.

In an instant, she took down another guard and kicked his weapon over to me, "if you don't want your sister harmed, get up and fight!"

That tone...

... Just like my father's tone when he'd admonish me

.....

"No one is born a warrior..."

"Go and fight, Andrey. Go and see how much fear you hold, and then defeat it!"

.....

I glanced at my terrified sister, grabbed the weapon, and gritting my teeth I hurried out behind the woman. She was awe-inspiring, like a warrior Goddess, wherever her spear went, there were few who could oppose it. It felt like I was being protected, not fought alongside. When I drove my dagger into a fiend's chest, all my suppressed anger and pain finally vented out.

By the time I returned to my senses, the remaining bandits were all strewn across the camp floor. We were free.

The girl with the fire-red hair returned. With a snap of her fingers, the flames that had just been wreaking havoc obediently died out, one after the other. As if sensing my adoring gaze, she turned to me and winked.

"I handled those morons all by myself,"she said. The imposing warrior woman responded flatly.

I brought my sister over to thank them, but it seemed they weren't keen to hang around long. The redhead lent down and tidied Sanderra's messy hair, "Sanderra, was it? Listen to your big brother. Hah... as luck would have it, I was the same size as you when I met Antandra." I heard her say.

....

"What happened next, grandpa?" My granddaughter blinked at me the same way Sanderra did back then.

After that, the warrior woman turned and left. The redhead skipped up alongside her, making her a racket, "How was that? I proved myself, didn't I? From here on out, I'm sticking with you!"

The warrior woman coolly replied, "That pack of bumbling hyenas was worthless. It doesn't count. Get back to the temple, old Numisu doesn't have many days left to live."

....

They seemed to be bickering fiercely, and although they couldn't agree on a result, they seemed to be happy. Just like that, they disappeared into the distant glowing haze...

Ever since then, I've never seen them again...

"Alright children, today's bedtime story is over."

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.