(PART 6 OF 10)


Ingemar wasn't kidding when he mentioned an army of the dead. Had I not been using the Amulet of Shadows to hide myself, I'd have been under attack already from no less than 3 skeleton archers right from the get-go.

Flame Antronch, Storm Antronch, Frost Antronch summoned, and they were the only things seen by the skeleton archers. I let my creatures duke it out with the other creatures.  I pulled up a longsword from a dead body left nearby and got ready in case anyone got through.

I summoned a few more creatures, and my team finally won the battle. I ventured deeper into the cavern. More skeleton warriors. More summonings to do battle with them.

One of the skeleton warriors fell near me. As he fell, I picked up it's silver war axe and nordic shield. At least now I wouldn't have to keep summoning weapons all the time. Good thing I did.

One of the creatures of the dead got through my defensive line. I had summoned a golden saint to assist me, and between the two of us, we managed to put the creature down. I was glad I brought several of my homemade restore magic potions with me. I needed it. Summoning creatures takes lots of energy.

I used the Amulet of Shadows once more, and continued on into the cave. Five more dead creatures, along with 5 skeleton archers were waiting for me. Aryon's Helper brought forth 3 creatures, and I added a few more of my own. It was a huge battle, with blasts of lightning, frost, and fireballs filling the air. The skeleton warriors charged, and I added a demora, winged twilight, greater bonewalker, and daedroth into the mixture. It took a lot of magic to do that, and I had to use another potion to restore it. One of the skeleton warriors saw me as the Amulet of Shadows spell wore off, and broke away from the battle. It came at me with it's grinning face of death, axe in hand. I blocked it's attack with my nordic shield, and luckly for me, I had a silver battleaxe in my other hand. The creature fell in pieces at my feet.

I rested for a few minutes, taking advantage of the momentary quiet, now that everything that was dead in this area was really dead. I continued deeper into the cavern until I arrived at the tunnel's end. There, as Ingemar said, was an army of the dead; at least 8 or 9 skeleton warriors, guarding a door.  There were 4 or 5 on the other side of a cliff, guarding what looked like a large chest.

I fired up a Wall of Fire spell at 20 feet distance, another one at 40 feet, with another at 60 feet. I stood out where the skeleton warriors could see me as plain as day. As they charged, the first Wall of Fire ignited at 20 feet, then the second one came up at 40 feet, trapping them between the two walls. The third one ignited at 60 feet, right on the other side of the cliff, destroying the skeleton archers guarding the chest.

It took nearly a minute for the first two walls of fire to disperse. I ran to the edge of the cliff as the third wall faided out. Drat - no way across by foot. I guess this will be a job for the Belt of Flight.

Slow and steady, the Belt of Flight levitated me up and over the very, very deep chasm. The chest was locked, and what a very good lock it was; extremely high quality, difficult to pick. I was very glad I brought the Ring of Keys with me. It's only good for one shot every couple of minutes, but it'll open just about any lock. I was very glad I had that item made.

The Ring of Keys worked it's magic, and the lock fell open as if I had used an actual key. Inside the chest, I found what I had been looking for: Thorjan's Gauntlets. One gave the user extra strength, and the other provided a feather spell, letting the user carry more weight. The combined spells of these constant effect items would allow the user to actually pick up and use Thorjan's Warhammer. The only question is: Where is the Warhammer itself?

I levitated back to the other side of the chasm. As I landed I noticed a huge door in the darkness. If I had just enough magic in the Ring of Keys, I might be able to open it. My luck was still holding - the Ring of Keys managed to undo the lock on the door. I swung it open and went inside.


Inside was another chamber, and I hadn't taken two steps inside when I heard "You will die where you stand!!!". Well, some of the townspeople had mentioned a crazy warrior by the name of Mad Bull, who was always looking for a fight. What he was doing in a cave full of dead things, I'll never know, since I didn't have a chance to ask him. He came at me with a huge battleaxe. My little silver axe would be no match for that, and his armor was much too strong.

I hit him as hard as I could with my axe, but he deflected it easily with his shield. Summoning weapons would take too long. I just needed to get him off balance for a few seconds. I dodged one of his blows and pushed into his shield. He staggered back a foot or two and laughed. "Is that the best you can do, old man? Har Har!! I'll add your bones to this cavern, like those who have come before you."

That was the few seconds I needed. I still had the Belt of Levitation on, and used it. I wished it was faster, but I managed to get out of his range in the two seconds that he was taunting me. This belt would only keep me off the ground for 60 seconds. I had to think fast.

Nordic race: resist frost. Fire was the answer!

I summoned forth a Flame Antronch. Mad Bull was extremely strong, with a powerful life force. While he did battle with my flame antronch, I also summoned a storm antronch as well. I had used up the power of my Rings of Leaches, but Dracula's Ring was now fully re-charged. I aimed it at Mad Bull, and fired the spell at him.

Mad Bull was enranged when he attacked me. Well, now he had a better reason to be enraged. I hit him over and over with spells from Dracula's Ring, absorbing his life energy into myself. Between the hits from my ring, and the damage being done by my summoned creatures, Mad Bull finally collapsed onto the ground, just as my levitation spell faided out. I looked him over, and found a key. I took it, and headed in to where Mad Bull had charged me from. As I approached a huge set of doors, I saw the bodies of those who had come before me. Obviously, they weren't as lucky as me.

I approached the doors carefully, and checked for boobytraps. I couldn't find any, but it was better to be safe than sorry. There was obviously something important behind these doors, and Mad Bull had made it his business to keep intruders out.

They key I found on the body of Mad Bull opened the huge doors, and they creaked open with a loud groan. Inside, I found the remains of a warrior. Just behind him was a huge warhammer. This had to be the grave of Thorjan himself. I tried picking up the warhammer, but it was just too heavy. This had to be the thing I was looking for.

I put on the gauntlets and tried picking up the warhammer again. This time, it came off of it's pedistal easily. Even though it was extremely heavy, I found I could carry it, and swing it as well.

I headed out of the cave, but stopped and disposed of Mad Bull before I left. I put on his mighty armor. I looked pretty mean in it, especially the helmet. I hoped I didn't scare the bearcubs.

Once outside, I used the belt of levitation to slowly take me down to the shoreline where I left the bearcubs. It was refreshing to smell fresh air again, after being in a tomb.