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The Cult of Veran


It had been three months since the incident in the Gero desert. In short, something paranormal occurred on a mining trip leading to my discovery of a vast desert, and my capture by a fortress of thieves and murderers. I do warn you not to feel sorry for me. It was my own ambition that got me into this mess, and it’s going to have to be my own ambition that has to get me out. Whether I’ll make it out of this alive to share this story, I don’t know. I should have never been back in that damned desert.

Odd things began happening but a mere three months after my incident in the Garo desert. It started with the disappearance of trivial items around my house. Food, seeds, etcetera. At first I wasn’t concerned about the matter, and thought that a novice thief had slipped by while I was away and hadn’t taken anything major. It was after personal stashes of diamonds and other precious items went missing that I became worried.

I was out one day exploring the unmapped areas far to the North of my house. I always loved the snow so it was a no brainer that I built my house but a mere two thousand blocks away from a snow biome. In truth I would have settled in the snow biome had resources not been so non abundant. The area I’m in now just made more sense. Once I’d returned home, I went to stash the gear I had on in a top secret vault chest I’d created a few floors below my basement. The chest was empty. All of its contents were completely pillaged. I was confused. How could someone know where this chest was? My house was in the middle of nowhere, this person would have to of been watching me from my basement as I dug to the entrance of this vault. The fact that someone could do that unnerved me. For the next few days leading to the incident I always felt watched. Always feeling closely observed as if someone was always lurking right out of my field of vision.

Four days after the fact, while I slept I heard footsteps outside and barely managed to catch a face quickly disappear out of sight in my window. I’ll admit, at this point I was completely scared, pardon my language, shitless. It was something straight out of a horror novel. I got up and armed myself and decided to wait in my house. The footsteps outside the house did not hush, but become more frequent and fast paced. This only made me more scared. What if it was the people from the fortress in Gero? Right then I felt a dagger sink into my back as I saw an unnervingly familiar face staring directly at me. I should have known not to trust her.

I woke up with the worst pain I’d ever felt in my back in an abandoned hospital. Potion chests and healing containers askew throughout the facility hinted that. It didn’t look like a hospital, though. Stone blocks made up the walls, rather than a stereotypical hospital wall material. The place felt like you would imagine a Nazi Germany field hospital would feel like. A sense of sheer dread blanketed the place along with a sense of great despair, as if many have suffered at the hands of this building.

I began walking around, scoping out the inside to see if I could find anyone that could make my situation just a little bit clearer. I must have experienced slight amnesia because my memory of how I’d gotten to this place was quite blurry. I walked, draped in but a hospital gown down lifeless halls with medical equipment scattered and knocked over throughout the hall. This added to the sense of being in a horror story like situation. Everything fit. Unlike every other door in the hospital, ahead I saw a door slightly open with what seemed to be one, red eye gazing out at me. It quickly moved away. I know some would call me stupid for approaching the door, but I had no other choice. It was the only sign of life I’d seen throughout the entire hospital, I’d be more of a fool for not investigating. I was in able condition to hold off whatever was back there and still be able to make a narrow escape, so I wasn’t entirely too worried.

The door over-exaggeratingly creaked open and the room was completely dark save for one torch in the middle of the room illuminating what seemed to be the familiar pale face of the woman I’d met at the temple in Gero desert. Dread struck me at the thought of being back there, at the mercy of the bandits in the fortress. As more lights in the room mysteriously flickered to life there stood confirmation of what I had thought. The old woman from the temple, I knew I’d been a fool to trust her.

The woman greeted me with “We meet again, foolish young man.” “What are you doing here?” “What am I doing here?” I replied. “It was all part of our plan” the woman explained. The mines, the temple, the fortress, all were planned out before I’d even gotten to the cave that day, the only variable was who was foolish enough to go in it. “Why?” I inquired. “Why, for we intend to use you as a sacrifice.” “Sacrifice to what?” I asked. “You should already know” she said. “We intend to sacrifice you to Veran.” “Who’s Veran?” I responded. “He is our god, our messiah. He was a great evil sorcerer one hundred years ago who settled in the desert, practicing black magic upon the fools who stumbled upon Gero.” “For one hundred years we have carried out the legacy of Veran, capturing wanderers and sacrificing them to him.” “We need but one sacrifice to completely resurrect our lord so that he may cover this world in blackness.”

It was then that she lunged at me with amazing speed for a woman of her age, and tackled me to the floor. She had some kind of super human strength. I was carried away by bandits of the fortress in the desert, to a room with a large occult looking circle in the center surrounded by priests of Veran in black robes chanting words in a language I did not recognize. They thrust me into the center of the circle as its perimeter was set ablaze. The center began to glow as the room shook violently. I began to feel tired, very, very tired. I knew what was happening now. My very life force was being drained from me and given to Veran.

Just as I began to close my eyes and let death embrace me, I thought of an idea. The circle was traced in chalk. Maybe, if I obstruct the circle the ritual will be corrupted and I will regain my life energy. I took my fingernail and rubbed out a sizable portion of the circle with what energy I had left. I was correct in my prediction that this would stop the ritual. The room stopped shaking, and the center stopped glowing. I felt strong again and ran as fast as I could and flipped over the fire.
With a strong kick to the thigh, one guard was down long enough that I was able to grab his sword. I felt a connection to this sword, somehow. It was mine! It was the one the bandits had stolen from me when they had captured me initially! With my legendary sword in hand and determination in my heart I struck down the forces of the bandits and made my way through the scurrying priests that wished to escape my vengeance.

I determined that the woman was the leader of the group, and as with all things: if you remove its supports it will eventually fall. I found the woman hiding in one of the numerous identical looking rooms of the hospital. It took me a few moments to muster up the ability to strike down an old woman, but this had to be done.
With the woman gone, I found an exit to the hospital and ran. I was surprisingly not far into the desert, but near the gates to the hills biome. With their leader gone and their whole reason to operate undermined they sent all but every soldier they had after me, not even bothering to close the gates so that I couldn’t escape. I took out what I could but their forces were vast and enclosing quickly. I ran out of the gates and made it back to my house where I packed my things and ran. I ran as fast as I could.

Later that night I heard a large group of people not far behind on my trail so I packed up, and hid my camp and moved further into the night, heading North. I’ve nearly made it to the snow biome I so love. I strongly believe that I am still being tailed by the bandits, unwilling to give up. I don’t know how long it’s going to take to get them off of my trail, or how long it will take until I’ve completely escaped them but know this: Never go mining alone.


Well-Known Member

Just kidding bacon. A gripping yarn!