Story: A Dance Through Time in The Wheel | World Anvil

Story: A Dance Through Time

The Tale of Arch-Mage Jildor and Grolthak Ironhide

  Jildor stood at the foot of the Raven's Peaks, eyeing the formidable castle perched precariously upon the mountainside. Inside resided Grolthak Ironhide and his formidable Hobgoblin warband. He traced the sigils of Chronomancy upon his palm, feeling the ripple of time against his fingers. A sigh escaped his lips. This wouldn't be easy.  
  Grolthak Ironhide, from the high vantage point of his castle, watched the lone figure at the foot of the mountain. A smirk creased his face, "One man against a thousand. Foolish."   Back on the ground, Jildor drew his staff, silver light pulsating from its core. He took his first step forward, then another, each echoing ominously through the valley. He knew what needed to be done.   Within the castle, Grolthak felt a shiver crawl up his spine. Jildor was coming.   Jildor's assault was as swift as it was deadly. His spells arced through the air, incinerating the front guard. His golems, imbued with Hazrad technology, tore through the warband. But there were too many. A Hobgoblin spear found his side, the impact dropping him to his knees. But as his vision blurred and the cold fingers of death crept in, time shifted, reversed. He was back at the foot of the mountain, unharmed.   Grolthak stood puzzled in the empty courtyard. The front guard was gone, vanished. He called out to his warriors, but only echoes returned. Unease settled in his gut. He was alone.   Again and again, Jildor attacked. Each time, he cut deeper into the ranks of the Hobgoblins, and each time he fell, time would rewind. His body remembered the pain, his mind the deaths, but he pressed on, grinding his teeth against the exhaustion.  
  Inside the castle, Grolthak was losing his mind. His men were disappearing, one wave at a time. He paced the now quiet halls, the absence of his warband an eerie silence. He was a king in an empty castle, a ruler without subjects.   Jildor, on what felt like his hundredth assault, found himself in the castle's grand hall. Grolthak was there, alone. He was no longer the confident chieftain from before, but a shell of his former self, fear etched onto his face.   "Ironhide, your reign ends here," Jildor declared, his voice echoing through the empty hall.   Grolthak looked at him, resignation in his eyes, "How?"   "Through time and determination," Jildor replied, raising his staff. With a final spell, he ended Grolthak's reign, and with it, the dance through time.   The tale of Jildor's victory spread far and wide, a testament to his relentless spirit and the terrifying power of Chronomancy. The hobgoblin's castle, now a symbol of Jildor's victory, stood empty in the Raven's Peaks, a grim reminder of the fate that befell Grolthak Ironhide and his warband.


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28 May, 2023 05:33

I like the usage of the chronomancy here - it's an interesting way to assault a castle. I wasn't entirely certain if, when he rewound time, the army and everything reset or his progress persisted, it was just his death that reset. It *seemed* like the second, since it talks about the front guard being gone.   I also really like the art you paired up with the writing. The scope of the castle, the emptiness in the aftermath... Really well done.

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28 May, 2023 06:17

Thank you. I was going for "show, don't tell" so I avoided explaining how everything worked.