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 READ NOW YOU PEOPLE

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Cynthia
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PostSubject: READ NOW YOU PEOPLE   Tue Dec 10, 2013 3:30 pm

Well, here is the first chapter of a shadow hope: remake. Some of you might remember the older version I made a while back, well, here is chapter one. Please comment and tell ideas!

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A tall, dark hair young man stood above the battlefield, peering down onto the horrific fight. His arms were scarred from his duty in the battle, the battle that had began three long years ago, a battle for survival. The sound of the large cannons could be heard blasting into the fortifications and crashing through the warriors. It was a bloody war, and hopefully it would end soon. In his hands the man held a kantana, the weapon he had created by hand to vanquish the enemy and to save his family. Alas, his family, save his sister had perished, and now he was on a course of vengeance, leaving any supporter of the Vipers as a corpse. He showed no mercy to the Vipers, nor to their women or children. Three years ago he was different; three years ago he was sane.

THREE YEARS EARLIER

The Kingdom of St. Cana sat on the side of the great river, the cities wooden building reflecting their stylish images into the crystal clear water. The sun was high, and the wind low, providing a wondrous day for which kids to play and run around, pretending to be the great hunters and warriors of the land. Martin was one of those boys, a dark haired but light eyed boy, son of a blacksmith and a weaver. He ran, chasing down his friends and tackled them as they tried to best each other at events of all kinds, as they did almost every day. Few ladies passed the small field on the outskirts of town where the boys played, after all, the young ladies did not care to watch boys roll around in the dirt like pigs when they knew their future husbands would be chosen for them, it was that time. The boys wrestled and struggled to beat each other until sunset, when they returned to their various homes, Martin to his father’s blacksmith shop, The Ironworks.

The Ironworks was a small stone building, with a wooden house connected off the side of it. It rested on the river, so the blacksmith shop could use the swifter flowing section of the river to power its hammer wheel. The house was smaller than the ones around it, for it did not have a second story, but a basement where Martin and his sister stayed, as well as it served as the family storeroom, housing all kinds of resources for which the siblings could play with. Martin entered the home through the back door silently, silently not to disturb his mother who used the night hours to make her most elaborate and amazing tapestries, the ones she sold to the upper class for significant amounts of money compared to her usual works. Sometimes she would take months just to make one high end tapestry. Martin made his way down the hall, elegant family artifacts gleaming in the flickering candlelight, including the family sword and shield, from when the small city was faced with war, over five decades ago. He crept down to the basement, making sure he did not disturb anyone as he went to his corner, where his bed and personal items were stored. He went to the small wood bed, just simple boards put together to form a bed, the cotton underneath stuffing it so it wasn’t as painful. With a sigh he pulled fresh clothes out from under his bed, and then changed into them. He didn’t need to bathe much, he had dunked in the river before he came home, something he did when he couldn’t make it to the bathing house before closing time. After he changed his clothing, into an almost identical wool outfit he lay in bed and stared at the wooden ceiling, little streams of light from the main floor shining down upon him and his sister, sleeping in the opposite corner. He closed his eyes, the darkness closing in as he fell to sleep, relaxing in the basement of the small home.

X...X...X

Martin burst awake at the sound of primitive gunpowder, muskets and flintlocks firing outside his home. He sat up quickly and turned his head to see, even through the darkness, his sister peaking out from under her blanket. Martin was not one to hide when there was action and stood, grabbing his knife and holding it, if he needed the personal attention. However, before he can get to the steps to get upstairs he hears a scream, and then the sound of glass crashing to the floor. Someone was in the house, someone was robbing or even attacking his parents. He knew he couldn’t stand and listen now, he had to do something, protect his family....or what was left of it. He ran upstairs, not wasting a moment as he brandished the small iron knife in front of him. Then he saw it, and gasped, his parents, on the floor, dead.

The house was silent, silent as the grave. Martin stepped past his parents, knowing they wouldn't be moving away from the location the currently lay, dead on the ground, the wounds indicating a melee weapon. He stepped lightly, noticing the walls had been sliced to bits, the once lovely hand painted wallpaper sliced as if attacked by bears. Making his way along he noticed valuables were missing, or broken, shattered against the wooden floor. Then he heard it, the sound if someone rummaging through the cabinets in the kitchen. Cautiously he approached the door, which was hanging off the hinge, just barely standing upright. Peaking his head he saw it, a man breaking into the family pride reserve, drinking from one of the wines as he did. Martin was disgusted by what this man was doing and without thinking he barged in, knife out in front of him as he stabbed at the man, startling him very much. The knife made contact, landing in the mans shoulder blades, but it seemed this man had no sense of pain as he turned and grabbed the teenager by the throat and swung him, tossing him into the wall with ease. Martin groaned, his back hurt like hell and his mind was blurry as he struggled to stand, only to receive a fist to the jaw, a swift uppercut knocking him back, and knocking him into unconsciousness as he slumped to the floor, blood leaking from a busted lip. The man grunted with satisfaction as he grabbed the rest of the family liquor and left, smirking to himself as he caught up with the fellow pillagers.

Hours later the teenager awoke, gently shaken by his sister, tears streaming down her face, making it obvious the small girl had seen the fresh corpses of their parents in the other room. Martin hugged his sister tightly, telling her as calm as he could to go back to the basement and stay put while he went out to see the commotion. She nodded and obediently ran back down to the basement, barring the door while Martin wrenched the family sword off the wall and ran out the door.

The streets were in chaos, thievery everywhere and fires being set to the wooden homes. The stench of death quickly filled martins nostrils as his young eyes observed the horrendous scene that was unfolding. Quickly he ran up the street, towards where the loudest commotion was and was shocked by what he saw, nobles and wealthy men being tarred and burnt or hanged, some even beheaded by the attackers, which wore a strange coat of arms on their armor and robes. A green circular shield, with a cobra in the center, curled and ready to strike, it's signature hood out and mouth open. Martin was filled with the fear that his friends were gone, that he would be found and executed as the men and woman in front of him were. Stepping back he took a detour, going around the square to find himself staring at the burning fortress on the hill, the castle in disrepair as it was bombarded by the attacking forces cannons. He couldn't believe his eyes, St. Cana was being demolished, he didn't want to know what had happened to his friends now as he ran back to his fathers shop, only to find it too burning, along with his house. Where was his sister? Now he was only too filled with the fear that she hasn't made it out alive, something he felt responsible for. He ran to the burning building and called for her, not caring that he had alerted the attacking force to his position. He kept trying, trying to find a way in or just to find his sister as the enemy got to him and tackled him, the sword he was holding skittering into the flames. He struggled, trying to shake off the armored warriors, but with no avail as he was knocked out, the last thing he heard was the cackle of the flames and voice of one of the warriors saying.

"This ones a good catch"

X...X...X

Martins head rang as he jolted awake, unsure of where he was. He smelled a musky odor through the darkness and felt around, stumbling, trying to find any clue that would tell him his location. He spotted a pinpoint of light and rushed over, only finding a barred window when it rang clear to him. He was in a prison, a dungeon, all alone in the dark. Tears filled his eyes at the thought of what was going to happen to him; would he become a slave? Or simply a toy to fight? Perhaps a gladiator, or maybe straight up executed. All the hideous stories of what people did to prisoners came rushing back into his head as his fears grew, pounding against the inside of his skull as he frantically searched the damp ground for anything he could use to get himself out of the mess he was in.

"Don't waste your energy, I've already searched" a male voice from the corner said, it's tone eerie in it's own special fashion, dark and foreboding in a way. Martin wondered who this boy was as his eyes adapted to the darkness and walked towards the voice.

"Who are you?" Martin asked, his hands against the wall as he felt his way to the newcomers corner. He was greatly puzzled by this, he wondered if this boy, or man or whatever he was knew what was going to happen to him, to them.

"My name is none of your concern currently, seeing the mess we are in, but you can call me Dende" he explained, then added. "Let me help light up this situation" he said and he struck a match, lighting up the area faintly. It was a boy, younger than Martin, but looked like he had been through a lot more, his arms were covered in cuts and bruises, no telling what the rest of his body looked like. "I know what your thinking, and the answer is well....we are basically pawns in a game, they force their prisoners to fight, in a tournament of sorts" he said, unfazed seemingly by the fact. "I've been in two tournaments, and seen so many perish around me, most tournaments go to the death; and I mean it." Martin gulped and slumped down in front of the boy.

"That's.....intense....when's the next tournament start? Why are they doing this? How da hell did you even get here? Your like what? 14?" Martin asked as the small flickering flame on the match burned down to nothing, putting the dungeon back into the pitch darkness.

"Calm down. However, since you most likely won't stop annoying me until I answer I might as well tell you. The next tournament starts in perhaps.....three months now, I'm not too sure as time does not concern me. It is.....a restriction" He told Martin, his tone never showing any emotion. "They do this for sport, it amuses them very very much to see their newly caught prisoners fight for their lives. A gladiator sport is what you could consider it" He paused for a moment, then continued on. "I was taken from my family, as I'm guessing is the same case as you, and no. I am certainly not 14, I am 15. Now if you don't mind, someone should toss tonight's rations for us, and I guess I shall have to share with you" He said, distaste obviously in his tone this time. Martin nodded and and looked towards the door, waiting for the food, which he could guess was no better than scraps.

Just as 'Dende' had said, a guard came in front of the door and shoved scraps through the bars, bits of meat and bread, some rotten fruit and so forth clattered to the filthy floor and Dende sighed in disapproval. Martin couldn't believe how they just shoved the food in, right onto the ground without warning or anything. He hurriedly collected the food though and stumbled back to the other boy, setting the food between them. Without saying a word the two boys managed to pick through the scraps, finding things they seemed edible and eating it, ignoring the facts it was scraps, and that it had been on the ground. Finally Martin spoke again, looking directly at Dende.

"Who kidnapped us exactly?" He asked, still wondering who had done it as he had never seen the coat of arms that the enemy wore. Dende remained silent for some time, seconds, minutes, before he finally spoke.

"An evil force, a kingdom from the south called the 'Vipers'. Ruthless and diabolical they will stop at nothing until they have all the land they want. Your lucky they even took you alive, more often then not they will kill everyone inside a kingdom before claiming it as theirs" He said plainly, his hands tracing a strange symbol on the stone floor, a sort of three triangles type thing. Martin knew he had seen the symbol before but didn't know where as he watched for a few moments before standing. He quickly searched the darkness for some straw or something he could use to create a sort of bed but there was nothing for him to use. This was certainly going to be a rough night he thought as he laid down upon the damp ground and closed his eyes, hoping the morning would be even just a little bit better. He didn't know how wrong he was.

It was hard to tell it was morning in the dungeon, little light shown in and you couldn't hear anything from the outside world. It was so eerie to be isolated like this, separated from the rest of the planet. Martin awoke though to the rough sound of someone forcing the heavy wooden door open, the hinges creaking in the most creepy fashion that the son of blacksmith had ever heard. He was slightly in fear of what was going to happen next and hoped at least it would be food, he was starving, and the food had sickened him from the night before.

"On your feet worthless worm" A gruff masculine voice ordered as he raised his hand, a silhouette of a whip against the wall, making Martin cringe. He had been whipped once for playing a horrible prank and he never forgot the painful sensation of the whip across his back. He stood and was grabbed by the man, who shoved him out of the cell and down a narrow, torch lit hallway. With each step Martin could hear the cries of men and woman, even children begging for mercy or crying out in pain clearer and clearer until he stepped outside.

Martins was blinded by the bright sunlight after spending most of the past day inside a dark dungeon. His eyes adjusted quick enough as his captor shoved him down a badly laid stone path, making it difficult for Martin not to trip and fall, which he could only guess but make his situation much, much worse. They made there way to an arena of sorts, a stone building that formed a circle, and Martin feared what awaited him inside, it could be anything and he didn't want to learn about it yet, or ever. However his captor just pushed him inside, shoving him over the spectators bar into the sandy arena before leaving, chuckling as he did.

Martin started to stand shakily when a spear landed right above his head, nearly killing him with it's sharp point. His eyes quickly took in the sight of a dozen or so people, teens and young adults of both genders, all armed more or less. That wasn't what was scaring him, no the scary one was the warrior storming up to him, their face concealed by a helmet in which he could only see their eyes, eyes blazing with the violence. He could guess where this person was from, years in his dads shop had taught him the different styles or armor and this threatening person was in spartan gear, right down to the sandals. That person wrenched their spear out of the wall with the one hand and with the other one lifted Martin by the collar.

"W-who are you?" Martin stammered, slightly intimidated by this spartan warrior, after all Spartans were known as fighters, and this one looked like they could fight very well.

"The names Spartan, my real names not important. Obviously you don't know what a spartan looks like, I doubt you've even heard of one" She sneered. "Just stay out of my way and you won't find your head on my spear" She continued and dropped him, walking over to some of the other people there and began to fight, but Martin wasn't sure if it was for real or not. Either way he didn't want to find out after that close encounter with Spartan. He shakily stood, having to put his hand against the wall to stabilize himself, hoping he wouldn't fall and make a fool of himself. He managed to stumble over to a weapons rack, he might as well get armed if he was going to have fight. He looked at row after row of weapons, swords, knives, axes, daggers, spears, staffs, and so on, even some weapons he couldn't name. He decided on a classic broadsword, short yet balanced and sturdy, extending his reach by a few feet. He hoped it would be sufficient enough to get him through alive, he didn't want to die without avenging his family first, and that was his only goal now, the only thing driving him.

He picked up the sword, and also a round gladiator shield made of a some sort of metal, it was rusted around the edge and the leather strap was next to useless as he hailed the defensive item on his arm. Looking around Martin could tell he was one of the most inexperienced people in the ring, most of the others were already sparring with mind boggling moves and skill for a person of that age. He tried to stay away from the rest of them, hoping no one singled him out as the weakest link, but something told him he was dead wrong.

CLANG CLANG CLANG

I bell went off suddenly and Martin noticed everyone was fighting for real now, fighting to survive. He gulped and raised the shield up, hoping no one would notice him but a soft humming sound from behind him told him he was wrong. He turned just in time to see a bolt of some sort of energy coming his way which he narrowly dodged.

"Damn!" He exclaimed and rushed at his opponent, a person clothed in a dark robe that covered their entire body, while a white mask covered their face, giving it the impression of a dark phantom, the specific name one that Martin could not remember, but knew it couldn't be good as he tried to slash at them, his footwork lousy which his opponent took notice too and sidestepped, easily tripping Martin up without so much as pushing him. Martin stood to try again only to see the hooded figure gone, gone from the arena itself even! He stood dumbstruck for a few moments before rushing into the fight, determined to make it, he wasn't going to wait to be attacked again. He noticed one of the people standing by themselves and rushed over, emitting a battle cry a he slashed downward, hoping it would be easy. As usual he was wrong, and the person turned to reveal herself as a girl around Martins age by the looks, perhaps a year older. She raised her own sword and countered, before slicing towards Martin, in a way to wound him but not kill. Martin however blocked, and stabbed, hoping this time he would not be disarmed like he was when he practiced with his friends.

The girl did not disarm him, but made a quick flirt towards him, hoping to catch Martin off guard, in which it did. He stumbled back, but raised his shield, then in a moment of stupidness threw his shield at her like a discus. She dodged easily and gripped her sword better now as she attacked with precision and grace, easily getting inside Martins guard and hooking her blade on his, bending his arm down with the force. Martin countered by letting go of his sword, making her stumble downward, and then he placed a kick to her gut, knocking her back and forcing the wind from her. She stood, blood on her lips as she smirked.

"Come on now, show some obeisance" She said simply, her tone even, yes persuasive, as if she had a charm to her voice. Martin ignored it, not even fully understanding what she said as he thrust forward, making a flirt himself, but it was a bad move on her part as she slashed downward with great force as knocked the sword from his hand, causing it to clatter into the sandy ground. Martin paled and backed away from the slowly advancing girl, hoping he could think of a way out before he joined his family as corpses.

Suddenly he had an idea and smiled as he knelt quickly and scooped some of the sand into his hands before flinging it upward at her face, blushing her and causing her to stumble away. He stood and grabbed his sword, swinging it at her as hard as he could, not caring if he killed her or not. Lucky for the girl she was quick enough to roll under the blade, coming up to lock the two blades in combat, slashing thrusting and parrying each other as they fought, the girl holding back from her true potential. Martin didn't know this as they continued to fight, until she took a step closer and swung hard, shattering his blade in two, one of the shards flying back and striking it's blunt edge across Martins face, giving his cheek a cut as he stepped back and felt the blood oozing onto his face. Martin ran at her, in one last attempt and jumped, aiming to tackle her, which he succeeded and knocked her to the ground, her sword leaving her hand as she fell.

She still could fight, and jabbed her hand at his throat, causing him to cough and loosen his grip on her which allowed her to shove him off of her and tackle him, plunging her elbow downward into his gut, causing him to retch and roll over. Martin knew she would try a fatal move next and swung his knee to whack her in the side, causing her to fall onto her side, facing him. She grinned and grabbed his shoulder, flipping him over her body and onto his stomach, where she pounced and pinned him.

Martin tried to get out of her hold but she had him good, in a way neither brute strength nor strategy could get him out. He watched out of the corner of her eye as she picked up part of the broken sword and held it, the blade facing downward as if she was going to stab him, kill him. Martin closed his eyes, not wanting to watch his own fate when suddenly....

"All right you insolent street rats. Trials over. NOW BACK TO YOUR CELLS!" A guard in the stands roared, cracking a whip in the air to hurry them up. The girl stood and handed him the part of the sword.

"Here" she said "until next time....what is your name?" She asked, still practicing perfect grace and posture.

"Martin" he replied and noticed guards running over to them. He was about to turn to the girl and ask her name but when he did....she was gone. Instead he tucked the fragment of his sword into his clothing and let the guards grab him and lead him out. As he left he noticed the dead. Corpses of some of the teenagers dead, stabbed to death, some strangled, one body even burning filling the air with the pungent smell of burning flesh, making Martins eyes water as he was led back into the cell.
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PostSubject: Re: READ NOW YOU PEOPLE   Tue Dec 10, 2013 5:24 pm

Love it! Especially that last chick.
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Cynthia
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PostSubject: Re: READ NOW YOU PEOPLE   Tue Dec 10, 2013 5:26 pm

Well, considering the last chick is you..... Any ideas for the next chapter?
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PostSubject: Re: READ NOW YOU PEOPLE   Tue Dec 10, 2013 5:52 pm

Well, what can I say, I do make a breathtaking character XD But thank you for making me awesome. And... Hmm. Do they have a mess hall? You could make them all have a meal together, everything's all crazy and Yeh. Like Tortuga in the Pirates of the Carribean XD
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PostSubject: Re: READ NOW YOU PEOPLE   Tue Dec 10, 2013 5:56 pm

XD TORTUGA! I'll make sure to work on that, I'm already halfway done with chapter two
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PostSubject: Re: READ NOW YOU PEOPLE   Tue Dec 10, 2013 5:59 pm

Yay, when will chpt. 2 be up?
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PostSubject: Re: READ NOW YOU PEOPLE   Tue Dec 10, 2013 6:02 pm

....well, I don't know. Hopefully by jan1- jan 31. Help is needed, if someone wants to help
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PostSubject: Re: READ NOW YOU PEOPLE   Tue Dec 10, 2013 6:06 pm

I can. Smile Also I will resume progress on the cover.
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PostSubject: Re: READ NOW YOU PEOPLE   Tue Dec 10, 2013 6:09 pm

YAY!!!!! Can you edit the first chapter please?
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