Story Game: Ploy of the Cursed King

1ST STORY: Ploy of the Cursed King


The cursed king locked himself within his citadel of evil. Surrounded by darkness and demons, he fought to retain his control over the world. In the end, however, a group of warriors (now known as the Assembled Warriors) gathered together to defeat his army, his generals, and then finally the evil king himself. With his dying breath, the Cursed King constructed a dark curse, summoning all of the demonic power left within his citadel and aiming it strictly towards the Assembled Warriors.

With the battle complete, the nation is without a government. The Assembled Warriors are the most powerful warriors and brilliant strategic minds in the nation. It is necessary that one of them becomes Emperor to guide the people to a new era. The difficulty here lies in the fact that no clear method of determining emperor is available. To pick the nation's rule at random would be foolish and the army is not cohesive enough in thought to vote on one.

The option decided upon was to simply take three days to decide. The days will progress with the warriors giving stories of their own personal actions during the battle of the citadel. This is a chance for all who demonstrated the most honorable and desirable qualities during that battle to let their merit become known. At the end of the period, supposedly, a vote will occur to determine who is the most qualified to be the new Emperor.

The warriors, for the most part, are at peace with one another. A variety of factors, however, will soon drive apart the summit.


The major setting is the encampment, where each warrior has set up his own living arrangements. Mostly, this includes closed, private tents. The landscape is hilly, as the summit takes place upon a tall mountain, formerly known as the Demon's Summit but now renamed by the warriors "Assembly Peak." While forests surround the camp, it is dangerous to leave the area through any way but the camp's front gate, due to the steep slopes. Besides the tents, several large, flat areas have been set aside for an eating area, a sparring area, and a gathering area. The gate is meant to be kept well illuminated at all times by two torches. A large bonfire burns consistently at the center of the camp and will be extinguished once the new Emperor is decided upon. There are a few shacks that serve as storage areas for things such as provisions, oil, and the like. All of these provisions are in good supply. One private tent is set aside for bathing, while another is set aside for excretion of waste (alternatively, the forest can be used).

Far in the distance lurks the Cursed King's now ruined citadel.

The world outside of this encampment is something of an uncharted, infinitely large expanse in which any number of villages and towns exist. All of these were supposedly under the control of the Cursed King, despite whatever other governmental provisions they had in place, but are now free from his tyranny and cruelty. The technology of the world is just slightly greater than under feudal Japan (basically, separate yourself from ideas of globalization and electronics). Characters come from a fantastic array of all cultures.



The characters are yet undecided. They will be chosen from submissions. Feel free to send me a board PM with up to three characters in the following template:

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Name: (pretty obvious)

Appearance: (general description)

Personality: (general description)

Skills and Talents: (just some general listings of things your character is good at doing, presumably including some elements of fighting since they're warriors)

Background: (as much or as little as you want, including relationships to other characters you submitted if desired)

Note: your background can and likely should include their exploits against the Cursed King and his minions but may not include the killing of the Cursed King himself.

Also note: everyone will use the same pool of characters, so don't think of these as characters you're going to RP, but simply as actors in your story (not that your story can't focus on these if they are accepted as characters for the pool). For added interest, please avoid telling anyone else which characters you came up with. It may be more interesting to leave their creators anonymous. Know also that none of the characters besides the Cursed King are ones I came up with.

Once submissions begin to trickle and I judge I have enough, I'll try to open up the game.

Current Legend:

The current "legend" is the Cursed King himself. He is an ominous, towering man who dresses entirely in black and always in armor. His armor is so complete that it is impossible to make out even the slightest bit of his face. His eyes are said to gleam with charismatic, blue brilliance; the only sign that he was ever human. His manner of speech has varied between various warrior's accounts as well. His weapon was a tremendous sword carved from the bones of some great beast. He was said to wield it nearly effortlessly, at times with one hand. All claims point towards the fact that he despised humans and his only purpose in tyranny was to place himself above them. His reasons for hating humans is shrouded in mystery... because he is said to have been killed during the battle, however, the world may never learn his true reasoning. He is still so shrouded in mystery even now, since his corpse was never found, that it's hard to construct a reliable description of him.



"Legend:" The legend is a figure that does not exist in a physical, challengeable form, but chooses to alter the events of the gathering with their actions. These actions can include anything from a simple whispered word to physical violence. Their abilities are supernatural and they are something of an omnipotent ghost.

"Emperor:" The title that is designated to the one whom all warriors agree is most fitting. While this sort of magnanimous decision making seems best, various motives such as pride and ambition are likely to make deciding on the true Emperor difficult for the warriors. The position would of course come with a great deal of status at least, if not other perks. The greatest perk may be the ability to establish new policy... although the warriors may not realize it, they all come from different cultures, so their views probably aren't as congruent as they should ideally be.

"Assembled Warriors:" The warriors who fought in the battle to overturn The Cursed King's rule are known as The Assembled. Each played some role in the battle and thus are assembled to be considered for the succession of the title of Emperor.

"The Cursed King:" The dark foe vanquished by the Assembled Warriors. He was known to be a cruel and vicious tyrant who is widely despised even following his death. His final words put down a curse upon the Assembled Warriors...

"Curse:" The curse states that the warriors are doomed to destroy themselves from within. It is hard to tell what the exact meaning of the curse is... will their bonds of companionship be severed? Will they literally kill each other? Or will they become so bloated with pride from their accomplishments that they lose sight of the value of the assembly? It could mean anything... Worse is the promise that the curse will follow the warriors no matter where they go. However, it's nothing but the words of the dead, right?



(NOTE: Reading this section is unnecessary for those only wishing to input characters)

You will construct a story using the characters given, following the listed conditions below. Anyone is free to make a story, even if they didn't submit characters; anyone is also free to make characters, regardless of whether they intend to make a story. There is no need to release your story all at once; rather, you will do so in chapters (I'd recommend releasing them as a topic in the General Chat forum). I'll collect them all as links later. You're free to write first person from a character's view or third person. You are free to change the narrator/perspective during or between chapters, or keep it consistent throughout all chapters. You must have at least three chapters, but there is no maximum number, so long as the conditions are satisfied each chapter.


During each chapter, at least three of these conditions must occur:

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-Two or more people are killed.

-One or more person(s) dies of natural causes, suicide, or an accident.

-One or more person(s) goes missing.

-A relationship of friendship/love/trust is formed.

-A relationship of friendship/love/trust if broken.

-The "legend" character takes action.

At the end of the story, The following guidelines must be met:

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-Exactly three non-missing people are left alive and at the summit at the story's end. Any characters who have fled, gone missing, or otherwise are not at the summit don't count.

-The "legend" character took action at least once during the story.

-All three remaining characters agree upon a single individual to become Emperor.

In the end, the story that is voted superior in a poll will become canon. The story will be held as true and will form the historical basis for the next story. The new "legend" will be chosen by the creator of the story from the pool of characters (living, missing, or dead, it doesn't matter).


Tips for an intriguing story:

1) Ahead of time, think of an interesting outcome for the three left alive.
2) Your "legend" character does not necessarily have to perform evil actions. They can take on a helpful role as well.
3) Try to tackle the unexpected and/or ridiculous with character relationships.
4) You may add background and motivations to characters as you see fit, so long as it doesn't conflict with what was stated about them to begin with. Note that this means you are free to add in, for instance, hidden ties between characters or hidden alliances, even with the Cursed King.
5) Try to create good opportunities for "missing" characters to ascend to "legends" if your story is chosen.
6) You're free to modify the setting in any way that does not conflict with what's already given.
CHARACTER COUNT: 11. Registration is now closed.

Samuel DeMorgan
Name: Samuel DeMorgan

Appearance: Samuel DeMorgan is a visibly good natured fellow. His hair is cut short and generally looks presentably in order. A fairly large nose and a solid chin add a certain masculinity to his face. He sports a trimmed beard which surrounds his near perpetual smile. A scar traces its way from above his left eye to halfway down his cheek. His northern origin is very present in his light skin, blonde hair, and beaming blue eyes. Samuel is of an impressively large stature. He stands at 6 feet and 8 inches and is very well muscled. He has recently put on a bit of excess weight as well, which in general makes him look that much more jovial. He generally wears loose, bright clothing outside of battle, and in battle he adorns his full plate which has been dyed a crimson red.

Personality: Samuel is very easy to get along with. He has a kind, caring personality. He is exceptionally sociable and always ready to have a good time. He attempts to make sure everyone is getting along, and does his best to make others happy and comfortable. He isn't, however, soft, and is willing to strike when force is needed. He also isn't without any faults. He harbors a fairly deep seated jealousy towards his younger sister. He also suffers from something of an inferiority complex, and this affects his judgment at times.

Skills and Talents: Samuel can hold his own in a sword fight. He fights with a long sword and shield, and is proficient in their use. He does well in a brawl. He is also a decent commander. He has exceptional people's skills. He is quite capable in social situations, including diplomacy. He hold his liquor well. He tells a good joke and entertains company well. He is a favorite of children.


Samuel was born to nobility. His birth was followed quite quickly by that of his sister, and as a result the two grew up side by side. They were very close as children, but Samuel found that he was always one or more steps behind, and his sister seemed to outclass him in nearly everything. She always bested him, and this caused the boy to seriously question his own competence, and he developed something of an inferiority complex because of this. As he grew older he entered the fairly dismal high society, joined the army, and led a fairly plain upper class life.

One night he found his sister preparing to leave. He refused to let her go. When she told him to move, he told her to stay, and that she was where she belonged. Her sword came down in a flash, cutting into his face. As he doubled over in pain, he felt her fist, and lost consciousness. When he awoke, he was in bed, the wound on his face had been tended to, and his eye had been spared damage.

After his sister left his life continued as it had before, though he stopped training with her. Growing injustices in the surrounding world began to make themselves clear even within Samuel's plain life, and he joined the crusade against the Cursed King. He fought bravely on the battlefield, alongside his men. As part of the early assault, he found himself up against one of the Cursed King's Generals and his army. He fought bravely as he forged his way to the general outside the gates of the citadel.

By the time he made it to the General, he was left to fight the man alone. Samuel engaged the General, though he seriously doubted his ability to win the match. He found himself doing poorly, and regretted his recent halt in training. After a period of battle with the General, in which numerous blows had been exchanged, Samuel was disarmed. His lack of confidence surged within him, and he knew he hadn't been good enough to take the opponent. He waited bravely for the final strike to take him down.

It didn't come, however. A small armored figure in a red scarf appeared, and while Samuel dropped to his knees in appreciation, the new comer he identified as his sister successfully dealt with the General. Samuel didn't have time to thank her, however, as she immediately headed deeper into the citadel. Samuel retrieved his sword and headed back into the fields to rejoin the other warriors. He did his best to make sure nobody fell on the battlefield on his watch.

He made himself as useful as possible in the aftermath of the battle. He dragged a few wounded off the field, and aided the others in setting up the camp on Assembly Peak. He did his best to take part in the discussions of what would become of the world after the Cursed King's death, and supported the method that was decided upon. He didn't know if he was qualified to be king, but his social nature prevented him from turning down the chance to try. He lacked the confidence to believe he deserved the position, but had no trouble trying. He had fought bravely, and felt he had the social grace to excel at story telling, if not at ruling.

Emily DeMorgan
Name: Emily DeMorgan

Appearance: Emily, or M., as she prefers, is the type of woman who gives those around her chills. She has a stern look almost perpetually upon her little face. Her cold blue eyes probably aid her the most in this impression. The blue eyes, along with her pale skin and blonde hair, which she keeps cut boyishly short, come from her northern heritage. She has sharp features, and always looks to be thinking about something. Unfortunately for her, she is exceptionally small. She stands at only 5'3", and is very thin, built of mainly lean muscle. She generally wears fairly loose clothing, which never includes dresses or anything else that would hamper her movement. In battle she wears light armor, which always includes a helmet that covers her whole head, adorned with a red scarf.

Personality: The world is unfair. M. has learned that through her experience. It has given her a fairly sour outlook. In general, she is curt, and tries her best to avoid mincing words. She is direct and has no interest in trivial matters. She has to present herself as professionally and stoically as possible in order to get taken serious at all, so she does. She is very driven, and very bothered by the injustice in the world. She is alright with the solitary existence her cold nature has led to, and devotes most of her time to bettering herself. She is exceptionally envious of her brother, due to the preferential treatment he garnered as a child. This jealously extends to a lesser extent and impacts her relationships with everyone. She envies men for their power, and dislikes them for their willingness to ignore her as a second class citizen just because of her gender. She dislikes women who just accept this as the state of things. Due to her skewed perceptions, it takes getting to know someone before she will accept that they don't match the pictures she has in her head, hence the cold interpersonal interactions . Her girlish nature and trivial emotions are buried deep within her, and seem to only show in a few ways, like her devotion to her cleanliness, the way she stylishly matches her clothing, and her secret love for animals.

Skills and Talents: M. is an exceptional warrior. She can fight with grace and skill with almost any bladed weapon, and is a good shot on top of that. She wields a long sword by choice. She is an exceptional strategist. She loves animals and seems to have an affinity for them. She is a skilled horse rider. As a child she was forced to learn a number of things she didn't want to know, but retains knowledge of all the same, including how to cook, sew, and tend to wounds.


M. grew up alongside her brother. She worked incredibly hard as a child, and her efforts were rewarded, as she excelled and bested her brother in all their little games. As she grew older, however, she found that she was expected to fulfill a different role. Her brother continued along his path, blissfully unaware that she was working so hard and unable to get anywhere due to societal expectations.

Eventually she informed her parents she planned to join the army, and they told her she could not. She was to be a good wife as soon as they found a husband to send her off to. She was to know her place, where she belonged. Unable to deal with this, she decided to leave. Her brother confronted her, and when he echoed terms of being where she belonged, M. was shaken. She gave him a shallow cut, which wouldn't be enough to do any serious damage, and knocked him out. As she tended to the cut, she cried, something incredibly rare for her, apparently struck by the realization that nobody could understand that she wanted more from her life.

She left home and never turned back, though the feelings she harbored towards her brother, who had had everything so easy, and to the society that refused her attempts to advance, remained. She became a travelling mercenary, always using the gender neutral name M., and always wearing a full mask before getting jobs, in order to minimize the effect of her gender of her work.

M. decided to lend her sword to the crusade against the Cursed King, free of charge, hoping to better society. She fought hard and triumphed over numerous opponents. She managed to best one General, who fled before she could finish him, and defeated another to save her brother. Though she didn't want to admit she'd saved him she had, and she cursed herself for it, as well, knowing that though she outclassed him once again, he'd be the one who gained the most. She pushed into the citadel after saving him to avoid meeting him, and managed to clear a stairwell before heading deeper into the fray.

After the battle, she stayed around camp. She had found herself a perfect opportunity here: if she could convince the others of her bravery, they would have to make her Queen. She would finally get the recognition she deserved, finally best her brother, and be able to craft society to match her ideals.

Hardnel Mund
Name: Hardnel Mund

Appearance: Hardnel is a hearty, middle-aged man. His skin is heavily bronzed, owing to the fact that he's always working outdoors. His muscle tone is decent even in his old age, but wrinkles and pudginess are both fighting their way onto his once able frame. His brow is somewhat heavy and his nose very large, giving him a fairly primitive appearance. He has a very large mouth and generally large features all around; his hands are especially tremendous. Hardnel dresses shabbily in poorly crafted leather armor, covering his whole body. His beard has grown out since he started his campaign against the king, surrounding his chin with a sort of lazy black stubble, matching the color of his receding hair.

Personality: Hardnel is a likable fellow, but he's stuck on the line between being a hard worker and being a fool. While he tries his hardest at everything, he's really inept at almost everything. He had big ambitions as a soldier in his town's standing forces once, but he traded it for the life of a blacksmith. While he claims that's where his heart is, he's not very good at that either. He loves kids and anyone who will lend an ear to him. He's quite talkative and frequently drunk. For all of his good nature and smiles, he gets surprisingly frustrated with people who look down on him; he never breaks his smile, but he can't stand the fact that he's not really good at anything. Usually his strategy is to turn the conversation elsewhere. He's long since counted himself out from the possibility of ever getting a wife. For all of his happy-go-lucky appearance, he's become an extremely pessimistic person.

Skills and Talents:
-Smithing: Hardnel can repair armor and weaponry... supposedly. He's really fairly shabby at it.
-Physical Strength: Although his stamina isn't terrific, one thing Hardnel does have is a huge body. He can easily lift a grown man or woman over one shoulder and carry them a short distance.
-Moderate Weapon Experience: Hardnel knows just enough about weaponry to be basically effective at talking about most weapons. Anything more technical than a hand-held sword, however, he's useless with.

Background: Hardnel latched onto the backs of a group traveling to kill the Cursed King. He explained that he wanted to be of some use to them, since he'd found no purpose to stick around the village. Although they tried to leave him behind, he continued following them secretly and located the citadel. Once there, he moved in amongst the soldiers to fight on the front lines as a faceless front-liner.

Hardnel was useless in the battle. As others fell around him, Hardnel did all he could manage simply to escape and hide. The man had never felt fear for his own life so strongly before and despite all of his urge to prove himself useful and his good nature, which would naturally goad him to protect others, he was too cowardly to do anything but save himself.

Once the battle was over, Hardnel retreated to a secluded spot, grabbed a bottle, and began to drink. Through tears, he admitted to himself that he'd come to either be of use to someone or die trying. One part of him has convinced himself that he is alive due to his own efforts, that he helped, and that he can be satisfied with his life now. Another part of him tells him he still hasn't done anything with his life... and that maybe there's a chance he has a spot at becoming the Emperor now.

Of course, this will all be after fabricating the most spectacular story of how he defeated the Cursed King. Hardnel has reasoned out that since nobody has claimed to have done so already, the one who killed the Cursed King must not be present at the meeting. Using this information, he plans to pretend that he was the one to do so. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

Bartholomew Lloyd
Name: Bartholomew Lloyd

Appearance: Barth is a man of average height, but has the build of a pale, lithe man. He has messily combed blonde hair; his golden eyes are dull and almost lifeless due to his tireless lifestyle. As for his clothing, Barth wears a tattered, dirty cloth shirt with a leather chest plate over it along with a shoulder piece. He also wears a pair of loose leather pants and a chewed up pair of sandals. His weapon is a simple wooden bow and arrow, all of which was made by Barth himself.

Personality: Barth, despite his appearance, is bright and optimistic. Constantly asking questions to other warriors, often comparing their lavish lifestyle with his own, not-so-bright lifestyle, but he still keeps himself up and cheerful with whatever he can. Barth personally stated that this was the only reason why he was able to stay alive in his village. Though he states that he does not want the chance of becoming the emperor, the thought still lingers in his head...

Skills and Talents:
-Monster Knowledge: Living under the harshest oppression of the Cursed King, Barth's village was constantly under attack by the King's minions. There wasn't a single moment of peace for Barth throughout his life and he was forced to learn every monster's behaviors and capabilities in order to survive.
-Archery: Being one of the very few healthy males left in his village, Barth needed to hunt animals on behalf of the village for food and materials. Years after years of hunting through the dangerous forest alone has honed his archery and reflexes to near perfection.

Background: Barth had lived in the village of Hanover, an unfortunate village that was the nearest living settlement near the Cursed King's castle. Day and night, the villagers had to live in fear of unsuspecting attacks from the King's minions, leaving them constantly tired and the village nearly empty. Barth is the only remaining living member of his family after the attacks, but he only sees this as a norm as there are just as many people who lost their family to the monsters.

When the Assembled Warriors had passed by the village, Barth enthusiastically volunteered himself to guide them through the harsh, yet familiar land towards the castle. He saw this chance to free the village from the King by helping the band of warriors through his knowledge of various environments and monsters. He traveled along with the group to the castle; however, he was only officially accepted into the Assembled Warrior before the final battle.

After their triumph over the king, Barth was both humble and reluctant to take the chance of becoming the new emperor. However, the more Barth began to think about the chance of a commoner becoming the new ruler of the world, the more he began to accept the idea...

Salazar Millan Allbright
Name: Salazar Millan Allbright

Appearance: Salazar is a child of 16 with bright blond hair, fair skin and deep blue eyes. He has a slim build and is short for a child his age. He tends to look sleep-deprived, but in spite of this he attempts to put on a gentleman's smile fitting of his upbringing in all public appearances. He typically wears an elaborate green suit with a dark velvet mantle that seems laughably big on him.

Personality: Salazar attempts to show dignity and interest in the affairs of the Assembled Warriors, but in reality the meeting is a large culture shock from his relatively small-country. In spite of being constantly tired from the duties he is expected to perform on behalf of his country, he attempts to project a gracious and powerful image to the others. He rarely complains, even to his confidants. Salazar has little interest in claiming any glory for his supposed achievements in the battle against the Cursed King and even less in the perks becoming Emperor would grant for himself. He cannot, however, overlook the opportunity to raise his country to glory. At heart, he is still very much an innocent child, owing to his sheltered and idyllic upbringing.

Skills and Talents: Supposed precognitive abilities and supernatural connection to the Cursed King; Basic swordplay taught to young nobility in his country.

Background: Salazar was destined for nobility by inheritance in his small, peaceful country, but was pulled out of his already exceptional life by circumstances that now make it seem like it belonged to someone else. Late into the campaign against the Cursed King that united many of the countries, Salazar, the prince (soon to be the king) of Emerale, claimed he was haunted by visions of the Cursed King. While these nightmares seemed to leave him weak and feverish, he made unbelievable claims that he saw the Cursed King as a dignified and even friendly character and spoke with him. Word of his dreams had two adverse effects. Two camps of people formed around this tale: One which couldn't believe the heresy Salazar spoke in the name of the King and sought to dethrone him, and another which treated him as a weapon to use against the Cursed King.
Salazar's "moment of glory" that put him among the Assembled Warriors came when he revealed a dream he'd had, in which he vaguely claimed to have given the Cursed King a specific suggestion. The Cursed King's army, the very next day, performed a maneuver that seemed to correspond with what Salazar had offered and suffered a crippling defeat. Many then came to believe Salazar to have powers of precognition and used this to try and advance him as Emperor, under the pretense that his "clever ploy" against the Cursed King had turned around a hopeless battle.
Regardless of Salazar's chances or ambitions of claiming the throne of Emperor, a fact remains hidden in his heart: he feels that he betrayed the Cursed King that day. Ever since then, Salazar has had what some might call true visions, and others lucky guesses... but as of now, since that fateful day, he has never again been visited by the Cursed King.

Bridgette Liana Harrier
Name: Bridgette Liana Harrier

Appearance: Bridgette is a 17-breaking-on-18 year-old girl with dark, wavy brown hair that falls to her shoulders. She has a light tan complexion and deep brown eyes. She has a fit build that comes from regular exercise and is average height for her age. She typically wears light armor of a dark purple color. Rather than a helmet, it has protective headgear designed as a circlet with protective plating on the forehead and the sides of the face, although she rarely chooses to wear this. When she does, her hair is done up in a straight ponytail. Underneath the armor is a completely black uniform, which is what she will often appear in when casual dress is appropriate. While her natural tendency would be to smile, she's practiced in preparing a solemn and neutral expression while on duty.

Personality: In normal situations, Bridgette is an energetic and tomboyish girl who tries to balance out Salazar's serious and timid personality. She sometimes gets in trouble for shooting her mouth off at the wrong times, but, through a lifetime of being rebuked for this, has learned some prudence in social manners. She can't stand to see Salazar having a tough time and will easily lose her temper in her desire to protect him. When not on duty, she treats him like a little brother. Bridgette likes to fool around and tease others, but can often display a surprisingly low threshold for being teased herself. She could care less about who becomes Emperor and says so regularly.

Skills and Talents: Strong training in the use of a spear as a weapon. Bridgette is known as a fighting prodigy and is Salazar's elite junior bodyguard in Emerale.

Background: Bridgette was raised in the Harrier tradition of fighting females which began with her grandmother, a warrior so skilled that her legacy transcended the sleepy peacefulness her homeland of Emerale and became well-known in neighboring lands. Bridgette herself happily accepts her station as long as it allows her to be near her childhood friend, Salazar. Bridgette has always tried to act as a big sister to him, and feels the distance between them growing as Salazar rises to a higher and higher station. To bridge that gap, Bridgette is constantly honing her skills, determined to be always be the best choice for his personal bodyguard to assure she can continue contact with him. Anyone looking on the outside would probably call her behavior an obvious secret crush...
Bridgette accompanied Salazar to meet the Assembled Warriors as his personal bodyguard. Of course, in her home country of Emerale, which was far from the front lines of the battle, Bridgette herself made no noteworthy advances against the Cursed King's forces and has no claim to the throne of Emperor. In secret, Bridgette hates the Cursed King and everything having to do with him, including the title of Emperor, and views it all as a wedge driven between a peaceful life in Emerale with Salazar.

Christina Second Harrier
Name: Christina Second Harrier

Appearance: Christina is a tall, tan-complexioned woman in her forties. Age and marriage have failed to mask her natural glamorous beauty. She has dark, wavy hair that is almost always kept in a long ponytail. Her eyes are very dark, and she usually appears with modest makeup. She typically wears dark purple armor that is a bit heavier than her daughter's, fitted with ornate silver trim. Underneath the armor is a chain mesh suit. Her formal attire, which she is more accustomed to appearing in, is a dark purple uniform with silver pauldrons. Her figure is impressive by most standards, and her muscles are well-toned. She tends to look pensive when communicating and thoughtful when alone.

Personality: Christina has a selfless personality, and most of her efforts are motivated by the protection of her country or the "benefit" of her daughter, Bridgette. Christina has her own ideas of what's good for her daughter and raises her strictly to ensure that she becomes a proud and capable Harrier warrior. For whatever reason, she doesn't trust Salazar, but she never shows this in public. She could be described as proud and distant: she only seems to show interest in important topics of discussion and never makes small talk. She enjoys talking about her daughter as well, and her discussions of Bridgette are when she seems most animated. Although her accomplishments are great, she does not intend to take the throne of Emperor herself.

Skills and Talents: Very powerful with her spear, so heavy and large it might properly be called a lance. Has gathered battlefield experience since she was a teenager.

Background: From a very young age, Christina has been raised as a Harrier warrior by her late mother, the legendary Henrietta Rally Harrier. Her father died before she was born, and in her youth she was actually unimaginably rebellious, much worse than her own daughter is now. Her angst became focused as ambition, and she decided that when she couldn't fight her mother's influence on her life, she would strive to not just match Henrietta's legacy, but surpass it. This is what led her to the frontlines in the battle against the Cursed King as a representative of Emerale, in spite of the country's small size and peaceful reputation.
Christina fell in love decades ago, had her child, Bridgette, and lost her husband. It seems that this and the trials of war have greatly sobered her out: not only is little of the flame that drove her ambition left in her, but she seems almost robotic in her lack of interest in interacting with others. It may simply be that her daughter is the only thing she has any feelings for left in the world.

Terrinus Thane
Name: Lieutenant Terrinus Thane

Appearance: Thane is commonly assumed to be a fairly tall Kurnisian, overreaching the average man by a good head or two. This along with his thickset, broad shoulders; heavy, woollen cloak; dark, close cropped hair; worn, yet thick fur jacket and peaked, military cap gives him the air of a very noble and imposing person. He is also garbed in dark, linen trousers and a pair of worn yet resilient black boots, which along with a colourful emblem upon his chest and a bulky, leather carapace under his coat establishes his appearance as a Lieutenant of Kurnisia's Royal Guard.

Personality: Terrinus Thane's outward character is that of the Hero of Kurnisia. Faultlessly daunting in battle yet modest and gentle to his peers, Thane is the kind of man every soldier in the Royal Guard aspires to be. However, in reality, Thane is a complete coward, looking out for his own safety and fearing every moment as the one when his life is brutally and quite undesirably cut short. His status as a hero in engaging Kurnisia's enemies is attributed not to his supposedly bold and daring nature, but to a combination of dumb luck, slight cunning and a surprising talent for wielding his trusty one-handed longsword and pistol-crossbow.

He finds that his status as a hero gives him more perks than disadvantages, so he always tries to keep up his heroic image. This often backfires, however, landing him in dire spots where he either pretends to lead the charge against whatever foe he's expected to slay or take his colleagues to much safer places where he can safeguard his life whilst claiming a tactical reason for being there. Despite all this, Thane has proven to be a reluctant asset to the Royal Guard, as his presence in several engagements have ended up being the turning point in their favour.

Due to his common entanglements with forces that wish to unpleasantly gut him every chance they have, Thane has become very cynical and pensively paranoid. Although he has a good rapport with his military superiors, he often deduces chances of being sent into mortal peril and attempts to worm his way out of the situation without compromising his false heroic demeanor. He is not akin to turning down the hand of a lady and his exploits have also landed him in the beds of many pleasant encounters. Terrinus Thane's only goal in life is to survive his time with the military and make his way towards an early retirement where he can settle down somewhere he can be permanently out of the line of fire.

Skills and Talents: Despite wishing to be as far away from a battle as inhumanly possible, Thane is discovered to be a very apt swordsman and a good shot with his pistol-crossbow. This is one of the traits that has kept him alive whenever he enters open conflict, which can get very confusing and often very bloody, very quickly. He'll tend to keep a few of his colleagues between himself and oncoming danger whenever he can manage it.

Thane is a foremost survivalist, managing to squirm out of hopeless odds with a lifetime's experience of heroically running away. Much of his combat skill is reflexive, allowing him to think of escape plans and safe routes during a melee. His naturally suspicious and cautious nature also falls on those fighting alongside him, as the forces of darkness have planted traitors everywhere, some of which have taken the lives of many of his allies, and he does not at all wish to be caught unawares.

As a boy, Thane grew up in an underground dwelling where his "tunnel rat" senses became second nature to him. He has an intimate knowledge of where he is in accordance to a previously seen landmark when inside corridors or tunnels. Darkness barely keeps him down and it takes only seconds for him to adjust to extremely low lighting.

On the field, he finds that the Kurnisian soldiers look up to him as something akin to awe and take whatever he says as truth, although only if he keeps up his charade as a noble and heroic authority. Due to this, Thane has had a fair amount of practice with leading troops, though his inspiring presence no doubt attributes much to his influence of the Royal Guard's success in combating the cursed demons.

Background: Terrinus Thane grew up in the hovels of an underground Kurnisian settlement. There he became greatly attuned to living and working in small, dark places and can navigate tunnels and corridors with ease. Being part of Kurnisia's Royal Guard brought him to the wintery surface where alien concepts such as "daylight" and "wind" discomfort him. He was also unused to the extremely cold temperatures of the Kurnisian countryside, and took to keeping a scarf, gloves and a face protector with him at all times.

It is unknown why he became involved with the Royal Guard, possibly through forced conscription during the Cursed King's daemonic invasion. He somehow managed to wile his way into an artillery battery where he would be able to keep away from the frontlines and escape the brunt of the enemy's fury. Nevertheless, it wasn't long before he had his first undesired experience with the demons. In an attempt to flee the field of battle with his newly devoted associate Beargun, Thane ended up thwarting a surprise attack on the regiment's cannons, unintentionally leading the evil King's forces into the firing range of their guns.

Thus began Thane's ascension to his heroic status among the troops of the Royal Guard and the hearts of his countrymen. Thane and his unusual aide were eventually transferred to a frontline combat battalion where his "much desired bravery and skill" were needed most, much to the horror of Thane himself. From accidentally ousting a corrupted military commander to surviving hand-to-hand combat with a sword-wielding demonic leader, Thane's legend has grown way out of proportion to his rather oxymoronic life, and he was volunteered by his entire country to take the fight directly to the Cursed King's doorstep.

With this most perilous battle yet to come, Thane attempts to forge friendships with the other residents of Assembly Peak, as a willing ally is much more likely to watch his back than a reluctant one. The fight with the Cursed King's strongest forces will be a daunting task which Thane will have to use his cunning, paranoia, heroic legend and fighting skills to their fullest if he is to survive the coming nightmare. As he gazes up at the imposing citadel of the world's enemy, it seems the true horror of Terrinus Thane's life is only just beginning.

Pet: Beargun is a large Kurnisian bear, his coat thick and white to protect him against the cold Kurnisian climate. He is Thanes' loyal companion during his conscription with the Kurnisian Royal Guard and beyond. As a young yet rather large cub, he experienced the demonic invasion of the Cursed King into Kurnisian territory, where much of his species were slaughtered by vile and tainted creatures, some becoming mad with pain and fury, turning feral and corrupt themselves.

The young cub ended up stumbling upon a Kurnisian artillery regiment, where he surprised the soldiers by walking on his hind legs and carrying munitions to the cannons as they battled against the demonic hordes. He was adopted by the regiment and gained his name along with large hand cannon strapped to his back, which he can use with his front paws whilst standing up. He is tame enough to be comfortable around humans, especially women, but can be ferociously devastating against those who would bring harm to his companions.

In time he became attached to Terrinus Thane when he saved the artillery battery from a demonic attack and dutifully accompanied him throughout his various exploits and misadventures. Beargun makes life much simpler for the cowardly Lieutenant, a menacing growl keeping away dogged inquirers and his large claws and hand-cannon often saving Thane's hide by mauling or blasting demons into chitinous piles of daemonic ooze.

Roland de Hauvre
Name: Roland de Hauvre

>6'1", broad-shouldered, powerful, 57 years old
>full suit of splint mail; joints protected by leather; splints riveted into place; open helm
>fur-lined cloak, big enough to totally swallow his body, with de Hauvre horse and lance crest on the round golden clasp
>short brown hair, balding
>moustache and beard are mostly grey
>hazel eyes surrounded by stress lines and crows' feet
>perpetually downturned mouth
>burn scar under left ear (on jawline)
>hooked nose is on a tilt (has been broken before)
>wears a light cotton shirt and breeches under armour
>six-foot bladed lance, used to pierce or slash
>shield (round, iron) on back
>sword strapped in behind saddle

>jaded by war; tired of life
>imposing and unfriendly
>complacent — was fine with the Cursed King's rule because it was the status quo (gave up on resistance after Wickerbridge fell); doesn't have the motivation to break the status quo when going with it is so much easier
>believes the world will be ripped to pieces by chaos and strife now that the Cursed King is gone — when he was around, at least things were stable
>has no faith in the Emperor selection process (or even the candidates for Emperor); doesn't want to bother with taking on the task of governing— has little interest in becoming the Emperor himself
>resents Lydia for becoming a better soldier than he currently is (due to age)
>is unhappy that Lydia has been transformed from a lady to a killer by the Cursed King; this manifests as disappointment in her and her accomplishments
>when under stress: commanding, short-tempered

Skills and Traits:
>command — can run a battlefield well
>mounted lance (and sword) combat
>foot lance (and sword) combat
>leadership — those loyal to him will follow him anywhere
>care and reshoeing of horses

Roland is Lydia de Hauvre's father.

Although his town of Wickerbridge was able to hold out against the Cursed King's army for some time due to Roland's skill as a commander and defender, the village was overtaken at last. Many of Roland's best men were killed. Up until Wickerbridge's fall, Roland had been a strong man, full of life and rebellion against the Cursed King; afterwards, his hope broke, and he saw that there was no future for himself and his town other than servitude to the enemy.

Those left alive were soon forced into the army of the Cursed King. Roland and his remaining horsemen were taken from Wickerbridge under strict guard. After a long journey across a war-consumed landscape, they arrived at a village near the Cursed King's citadel. A demon lieutenant compelled the men into the service of the Cursed King as elite mounted knights. If the men defected or were killed in combat, the lieutenant guaranteed that their families in Wickerbridge would be killed as soon as the order reached the forces occupying the town.

Roland had no choice but to fight for the army he had resisted for so long. His men, demoralized at Roland's lack of spirit, gave in to the Cursed King as well. For years, the de Hauvre horsemen acted as a capable strike team and cavalry unit that could turn the tide of almost any battle. They helped capture cities, towns and farms, burning and killing in their wake.

This continued for more than ten years. Some of the horsemen were slain or fled the platoon. The demon lieutenant, true to its word, sent the order back to Wickerbridge to have their families destroyed. Roland continued to fight like a machine, ever mindful of his wife and children at home, not even daring to hope that they were still alive after a decade of the Cursed King's rule.

Things proceeded this way until a girl calling herself Lydia de Hauvre appeared in the army's central town.

At first, Roland could scarcely believe the girl he beheld. She was lean, strong, and learned in the ways of battle. Her one-woman campaign against the Cursed King as she traveled the countryside had transformed her into something that Roland did not connect with the little girl he had left in Wickerbridge.

When Lydia asked him to join the Assembled Warriors with her, Roland's first instinct was to refuse. Why throw their lives away? What would it accomplish? Even if the Cursed King were to fall, what kind of world would they be plunged into in the resulting power vacuum?

Lydia escaped the town soon after. Roland knew exactly where she was bound. Even though the fight against the Cursed King was a foolish cause, he could not let his daughter simply walk away to her death. Roland's platoon followed him faithfully as he rode out after her.

Before long, he overtook Lydia on the road. They pooled their strength and made their assault on the Cursed King's citadel.

As the fought hordes of demons, Roland became more and more aware of the monstrosity his daughter had become. She was a beast who rode at her father's side with sword and shield in hand, mercilessly hewing down all comers. Roland's age was beginning to overtake him. She was a younger, sprightlier, better warrior than he was. He carried his wounded pride into the final battle in the citadel, and that wound has stalked him even since the Cursed King's fall.

(The rest of the mounted platoon was killed in a succession of battles against the Cursed King's army.)

Lydia de Hauvre
Name: Lydia de Hauvre
>18 years old
>slight build — 5'4" and 125 lbs
>dirty blond hair, thick, bushy, frizzy; tied up in braids; individual braids are woven into a single large one, held together by a leather cord
>tanned, freckled face
>green eyes
>hooked nose
>crooked teeth

>white woollen dress, long-sleeved, split down front and back to allow riding
>over dress, wears mail coat
>over mail coat, wears loose white tabard; stained with old blood and dirt; horse and lance device of the House de Hauvre on the front
>gauntlets and sabatons of boiled leather
>helm with a visor that can be pushed up out of her eyes

>blue-and-white checked shawl with horsehair tassels is coiled around her neck
>sword and wooden shield strapped to her back

>rides a grey horse called Risden

>two years of traveling and fighting have made her stern and hard-hearted at first meeting
>takes work to get her to open up to people, but once she does...
>warm-hearted to her friends, and very trusting of them
>believes in divine favour, protection, and guidance (the benign touch of the legends)
>under stress, is calm and level-headed
>intelligent and perceptive
>easily startled
>willing to kill; it's become routine for her
>feels fulfilled by the life of a soldier
>feelings toward her father are confused: she used to idolize and hero-worship him, but it turns out that he's a jaded, complacent jerk who resents her because she's a better soldier than he is; she feels her father's disappointed in her

Skills / Talents:
>mounted combat (lances, spears, etc)
>foot combat (sword and shield); trained mainly for squad battles, but has adapted to fighting solo
>outdoor survival; she had to fend for herself, a long way from civilization, when she was traveling the country
>cooking (although she's not so great at it)
>sewing/mending/healing (a little of each; her mother taught her bits and pieces)

Lydia is Roland de Hauvre's daughter.

Lydia grew up in the town of Wickerbridge. It was occupied by the Cursed King's forces shortly after she was born. When she was a young girl, her father, along with the village's other able-bodied men, were pressed into the Cursed King's service and rode away from Wickerbridge for the last time.

The occupying forces subjected the remaining women and children to a harsh martial training regimen. Lydia was taught to fight with sword and shield (amd with horse and lance when the occupying forces became aware of the de Hauvre family's reputation as excellent mounted knights).

As Lydia came of age, she came to idolize her absent father. The stories of Wickerbridge's fall to the Cursed King's army painted him as a hero who slew dozens of demons until the occupying forces burnt him out of his family manor. Lydia wanted, more than anything, to find her father and fight the Cursed King by his side.

As she neared her 17th year, Lydia said her goodbyes to her mother and (surviving) siblings. She stole a horse and arms and fled from Wickerbridge. After a wild chase across the countryside, Lydia managed to escape the pursuing demons.

She spent almost two years traveling the country, working as a sellsword or errand-runner where she could and avoiding the Cursed King's forces at every turn. She was a sub-par fighter at first, but months of battle refined her into a skilled, hardened warrior. Her search for her father brought her to the citadel at the same time the Assembled Warriors made their attack on it.

Lydia found her father, along with the de Hauvre mounted platoon, in a village near the citadel that the Cursed King's forces used as a headquarters. He was shocked and horrified at Lydia's appearance, but took her in and hid her all the same.

She tried to convince her father to take up arms against the Cursed King and join the Assembld Warriors with her. When he refused, she left for the citadel by herself, heartbroken.

Her father and his platoon caught up with Lydia on the road. Together, they joined the Assembled Warriors, stormed the citadel, and defeated the Cursed King.

(The rest of the platoon's 10 riders were killed in a succession of battles against the Cursed King's armies.)

Enitan Akunyili
Name: Enitan Akunyili.

Appearance: Enitan is a dark black man of medium height and girth. He's grown very old over the years, around the 70s now, and his appearance clearly shows this. Only the sides of his head has hair and a long beard that spreads from there to approximately his waist. At the time of his participation in taking down the king he wore only ancient rags that barely held together. Scars and wounds are visible in various places of his aging body, especially at his wrists where it's visible he had been shackled even after being saved. He eagerly took any clothes he could find after the showdown.

Personality: Enitan was once a calm man, obedient to the king, and had an aura of royalty. It was hard not to consider him as being a royal person, but what was hard to do was figuring out what his true purpose was at the castle. Before anyone truly realized it, he was there and all that was known is that he had a job or duty there. However, once the king turned evil, Enitan was devastated. Through the torture he had to endure at the castle, his mind began to warp and hear voices that were not there. These voices, however, never whispered to him to murder people. He became scared of a lot of things, but still had a grasp of who to trust and who not.

Skills and Talents: Having lived in the castle, Enitan knows his way around the hallways and passages that eventually helped the warriors find their way to the king. Enitan was a spokesperson of sorts for the king and has sufficient skill in dealing with people, this being part of his tasks at the castle. It is unknown if he had ever trained fighting with a weapon, but it was quite possible.

Background: Enitan was in service of the king for many years prior to the rise of his evil side. He always told people that he was counselor to the king and that he had permission to live inside the castle. While the latter was true without doubt, people never knew what to think of the first. People, however, did know the king listened to Enitan's words.

Once the darkness began to consume the kingdom, Enitan was still in the middle of it. At first he had tried to talk the king out of it, but after failing this he was thrown in jail and shackled up. As the king continued his reign, Enitan was stuck in the castle. Servants were tasked by someone to keep him alive, but weakened, but Enitan did know why. Was it because he was loyal and the king rewarded him in his own way or was there a purpose to his survival. Years passed and Enitan grew older and older, not knowing what truly happened in the world outside the castle.

Only when the attack against the king began, Enitan began to see hope. But it was already too late for his mind. His body was in an alright state to move around, but his true self had been missing for a long time. He knew the warriors were here for the king and Enitan knew exactly how to get there. Was he kept alive to end the king's suffering? Was the king suffering? Enitan considered the king his friend, but there were simply things that should not be in this world.
Status update on character count. Note that some characters are unlisted.
Because I've had several questions come up, here's a FAQ to be referenced whenever anyone has a question they think may have been answered already:

Q: Can my character possess supernatural powers?
A: Anything is okay so long as it is not overly complex or distracting. For instance: firing fireballs is fine. Having listed tiers of fire powers that all draw upon the level of malice of all of those around him is not. Basically I just don't want supernatural powers to make particular characters too attention-drawing.

Q: What do you mean "The legend character takes action" in the conditions section?
A: The action refers to anything that will alter the course of the story; manipulating something, appearing to someone, speaking to someone, or actually physically doing something.

Q: Can my character have a pet, mount, etc.?
A: Yes; this animal will not count as a "character" towards the purposes of the conditions, however.

Q: Should I define how the Cursed King died in my story? Does he have to be dead?
A: At this time, that is up to your own interpretation. You can write it in or not include it, it's up to you. He doesn't even necessarily have to be "dead," although for the purpose of satisfying your final conditions, you'll need to make sure that he's not still at the summit by the end.
All characters are now up, so story writing may begin. I would recommend that you post your story in your own separate topic and PM me whenever you finish a chapter (I'm going to compile a page of links). There's currently no cut-off date for stories, but it won't be until the far future regardless. Remember that you can write a story even if you submitted no characters.

Current writers:
I've edited the rules slightly; I'm pretty sure the changes won't negatively effect anyone. Basically, it is no longer a requirement that any characters be missing at the end of the story and the new legend will now be chosen by the winning storywriter. This should help people feel less restrained, since they no longer need to plan for one of their "missing" characters to become a legend.