Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Part 2: Flame and Frost

"The sky falls and the ground shakes in the lands of the north. Charr and norn refugees crawl from the wreckage of their homes in the Wayfarer Foothills and Diessa Plateau, struggling to find shelter in the south. The call goes out for volunteers to assist the victims in this time of need, when earth and sky seem to have become the enemy…"
The Flame and Frost story came in the form of four updates, each revealing a section of the story. The 'Prelude' update began the story with disaster striking Wayfarer foothills and Diessa Plateau. The ground shook and houses fell, norn and charr refugees were forced from their homes in fear, they fled for protection from the great cities of Tyria. Fleeing south they aimed for Hoelbrak, The Black Citadel and Lion's Arch. The brave heroes of Tyria were sent to aid those in need, tasked with setting up safe routes toward the cities and looking for the cause of this destruction. The Wolfborn and Adamant Guard were unable to gather any information regarding the recent attacks from the shaken refugees for weeks. As the refugees began to give clear information about the attacks, it was passed off as shock; many of them explained that the Dredge were attacking using fire magic. The strange and unusual weather patterns in the affected areas were later discovered to be caused by steam vents hidden underground, they pierced through the surface and bellowed steam into the air altering air temperatures and increasing the humidity of the areas. Where was the steam coming from?

Refugees that had fled their homes were looking for new shelter and supplies within the cities where they had relocated. Most of the refugees that found their way to Lion's Arch had been given shelter and supplies within the city's walls. Many others, despite their previous negative reputation, had taken a contract out with the Consortium for a new home on Southsun Cove. There were increasingly more attacks and Dredge and Flame Legion charr working side-by-side became more and more common. Speculation around a potential alliance between the Dredge and Flame Legion charr began to emerge especially when Flame Legion charr were using Dredge-made technology and weaponry. Survivors of the attacks confirmed that the Dredge and Flame Legion were working together, they became known as the Molten Alliance. The Black Citadel began a war council to assess the situation and decide what action to take to combat this newly formed alliance. The orders of Tyria also planned to aid the fight against the alliance, the Order of Whispers sent an agent inside to gather information while the Vigil began the search for the hideout of this alliance.

"A hybrid army erupts through fiery portals in the Shiverpeaks. A Molten Alliance between the dredge and the charr Flame Legion has created a force powerful enough to massacre any who stand in their way. One settlement, one homestead at a time, they’re wiping out all resistance. The razing has begun…"

A young norn by the name of Braham traveled to the Black Citadel seeking aid, the alliance had attacked and captured his homestead, Cragstead (located in north Wayfarer Foothills). He requested assistance in reclaiming his home. His request was however turned down since the charr forces were already spread thinly across all of the other places that were attacked by the alliance and they could not spare any more soldiers. He was sent back to Hoelbrak, Rytlock also believed he was a liar since he claimed to be son of the late Borje the Sun Chaser and the legendary Eir Stegalkin (a member of Destiny's Edge). The norn then traveled back to Hoelbrak to seek aid from fellow norn. He was turned down again by the leader of the norn capital, Knut Whitebear since he feared that if too many soldiers were positioned far from the city it would become the next target for the alliance. Braham was unhappy with the choices of both the leader of his own races' city and the great Black Citadel's leader and decided to take it upon himself to gather a smaller collection of soldiers to regain control over Cragstead, the heroes of Tyria aided Braham on his mission and took back Cragstead. Many were taken hostage during the fight but the moral of the people of Cragstead had been bolstered.

During the Legions' war council, a gladium charr by the name of Rox was sent to retake Nolan Hatchery. She had lost her entire warband in a devastating mining accident and wished to join Rytlock's warband; the Stone warband. Rytlock sent her on this mission as part of a test that she must pass to be able to join the warband. Nolan Hatchery was used by the legions to create siege devourers, this made it a strategic stronghold for the charr forces. Rox, with the aid of the heroes of Tyria was able to reclaim the stronghold for the charr, not everyone survived but Nolan Hatchery was back in the rightful hands of the charr. During the fight, Rox befriended an albino baby devourer and named it Frostbite.

"In secret foundries deep beneath the Shiverpeaks, the Molten Alliance forges deadly new weaponry that combine the fiery power of the Flame Legion with the iron might of the dredge. There, Alliance weapon smiths test their creations on innocent captives, perfecting their cruel technology until it is ready to unleash on all of Tyria."

While the heroes of Tyria were aiding in the recapture of Nolan Hatchery and Cragstead, the orders of tyria had been collecting information. The Order of Whispers agent, Agent Brundubh was able to discover that the alliance had began digging underground to the east, south and west. An increasing number of prisoners were being taken on a daily basis, some of the prisoners were placed in pens while others were used for weapon testing. The weapons being developed were a combination of Dredge technology and Flame Legion magic and were incredibly powerful. The Flame Legion did not like spending so much time underground and began to be angry with the Dredge, small cracks in the alliance had began to form. It was still unclear why the alliance had formed, how it was formed and by whom. The Vigil agents, after some months were able to locate the entrance to the Molten Base. The heroes of Tyria, Rox and Braham entered the base united in combat to defeat the common enemy; the Molten Alliance. The cause for the steam vents was discovered, it was how the Dredge and Flame Legion were able to create so many tunnels in such a short time, their combined method of mining. The Vigil was able to uncover a collection of other weapon facilities located nearby and they were caved in using explosives crippling the alliances dominion of the area. Many Flame Legion and Dredge were captured and interrogated to find out more information; it was revealed that the alliance was run by a city-dweller, this person's location and alias were however unknown.