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    Desert Adventures (NLD)

    by , 11-10-2014 at 06:16 PM (325 Views)
    I was walking with my dad, who now resembled the older Russell Crowe from Noah, out of the town into a desert to join an expeditionary force that was tasked with recovering some powerful ancient artifact. "Are we going to help them get it or take it for ourselves?" I asked him, trying to clarify our motivations. "We'll see how it plays out," he replied. In the next moment I observed the leader of the expeditionary force raise at least a hundred undead elephants from beneath the sands, adding considerably to the impressiveness of their force. "For them, it looks like," I commented wryly, answering my own question.

    Moving swiftly ahead of the rest, my dad and I were the first ones to reach the stone antechamber that served as the entrance to the dungeon where the artifact was said to be buried. While we waited for the others to catch up, we heard an altercation outside. I heard a booming voice that I understood to be that an antagonist in the form of a powerful AI, announcing that it had trained an orbital telescope upon the army we were assisting. It claimed that the telescope was pointed at an ancient city beneath the sands, and was capable of igniting some flammable resource right underneath the army's feet.

    Although in dastardly-villain style the AI had revealed its plan before executing it, there was no chance to thwart it: in the next moment we saw a tremendous conflagration through the cracks in the partially-open doors of the stone chamber in which we took refuge. Fortunately the entrance was facing the opposite direction from the blast, and although the stone walls at our back protected us from immolation, we still had to put our hands over our faces to protect them from the sudden withering heat.

    We knew that anyone outside who had been exposed to the blast must have been destroyed—all but one, a single man who had arrived just outside the stone antechamber in time to be protected by it. I took him to be the leader of the army that had just been decimated. "Wow," I said, not directing my words to anyone in particular, as he slipped into the antechamber and joined us. "That was... overwhelming." I realized that under these changed circumstances, we would no doubt be seeking the artifact for our own purposes now, though whether this third guy would turn out to be an ally or antagonist in the long run was impossible to predict. "Guess it's just the three of us now," I commented as, without further ado, we started down the stone steps into darkness to begin our adventure.

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