February 2011

Queen Dawn Laid to Rest

Submitted by Martyna_Zmuir on February 26, 2011 at 8:00 PM CST
Library of Sosaria

Queen Dawn's memorial.Today, we laid our queen to rest.

Captain Dasha of the Meer, longtime friend to Dawn, led a processional of mourners from Castle Britannia to the Court of Truth in Yew. Once there, she presided over the memorial and presented the eulogists.

The first to speak was Galen Knighthawke of the Legacy of the Fallen:

Galen Knighthawke.The evil's name was Blackthorn; an unnatural abomination, proof that the absence of Virtue, even if benign in intent, sooner or later devolves to evil.

Against this there stood a young lady, a lioness named Dawn. And, by her, the evil was vanquished.

The evil's name was The Shadowlords. Three accursed, demonic entities, physical manifestations of all that we strive not to be. Pride, first a city's and then a man's, allowed them entry into our world.

Against this there stood a young woman, a lioness named Dawn. And, by her, the evil was vanquished.

The evil's name was Lord Casca. A would-be ruler who represented our worst, not our best. A brutal tyrant and a tool of evils greater than he, he oppressed us, and killed us, and reduced our complex Virtues to simple, corrupt laws.

Against this there stood a young Queen, a lioness named Dawn. And, by her, the evil was vanquished.

The evil's name is Virtuebane. Attracted by Pride and encouraged by Ruin, he invades our cities, lures our people to his cause, kills those he cannot corrupt, harms our allies, awakens old and sleeping enemies, uses the petty Sins that all of us commit to mislead us about what, and who, we are.

Against this there stood a young Queen, a lioness named Dawn. And, now, she is no more.

For you, dear Queen, Heaven today is hung in black. And, for you, dear lady, we we pledge our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor to vanquishing the last of the many evils you faced.

For a Kingdom, for freedom, for Virtue. But, mostly, for a lady.

There was a young Queen, a lioness named Dawn.

In peace may she sleep.

The next speaker was Chancellor DaKaren of the High Council of Britannia:

Chancellor DaKaren.We first met Dawn as Yew sank into the mire of a disastrous spell. We watched as she courageously fought for her home. She didn't know the horrors soon to be faced on the true battlefield exposed in that struggle. Nor the destiny which would lead her on to slay the corrupted Blackthorn.

This warrior thought her battles won, her rest earned. She returned to Yew victorious. As it is with such things, her life moved on. She met a man. They married. They were happy.

Then, as shadows stretched across Britannia, Dawn returned to the public stage. She helped unify our fractured kingdom while forging friendships with new allies. The shadows fell before the light which graced our world anew.

This warrior thought her battles won, her rest earned. Alas, the people disagreed. "The throne," they cried. "It sits vacant. Lead us!" Dawn hadn't sought to rule, hadn't sought such power. Yet, she accepted, settling into an uneasy role as Warrior Queen.

The Bane Chosen arose, pawns of an ancient plot. Dawn refused to act hastily, choosing instead to cultivate her alliances. The Chosen struck out at her heart, luring away her beloved. Virtuebane tainted the bond between Dawn and her husband, turning their love into a weapon.

Dawn fell not to the blade, which pierced her heart, but to the pain which pierced her soul. A pain which now pierces each of ours. Dawn believed in Truth. Dawn believed in Love. Dawn believed in Courage. Dawn believed in you.

We mustn't see her death as the end, but as the beginning of our renewed struggle against the dark. We must find that bit of our Warrior Queen within ourselves to stem the tide of evil, to ensure that all Sosaria prevails to see the dawn of a new day.

The Queen's friend, a teary eyed Ricardo was the next to speak:

Ricardo, King of Thieves.Dawn saw the world through honest eyes and the rest of us, with our shades of gray, were inspired to see it the same way. The whole world is diminished by the loss of such a person.

Dawn gave me a second chance, I am grateful to her for that. We must defeat Virtuebane, to honor her memory!

Rest in peace, milady.

Sherry the Mouse was the last to speak, her tiny voice filled with emotion:

Sherry the Mouse.I saw Dawn every day. I saw her when she came back from battle, bruised and exhausted. I saw her when she paced the floor of her office, dealing with paperwork she'd never wanted. I saw her when she went to sleep at night, staring at her miniature portrait of Ors, and knew she wished she could be back on their farm.

Dawn served her country with all her heart, with every hour of the day. She was a wonderful human being and a great friend. I shall remember her always and miss her much.

Dasha then called for a moment of silence to reflect the Queen's life. Afterwards, she excused herself to ready a 'riderless horse' to bring the sarcophagus to the gravesite.

Virtuebane chose that moment to interrupt the solemnity of the memorial by appearing behind Ricardo. "You have frustrated my efforts long enough, thief. Join your queen!" he roared before eviscerating the thief. As the archdaemon searched the corpse, brave citizen began pummeling him with spells and arrows.

For the first time, Virtuebane chose to physically engaged his enemies himself - probably only to show that their attacks were ineffective. With a mighty blow, the daemon laid out many of the mourners and fled from the courthouse.

Outside, he gloated over the killing of Ricardo and the retrieval of the Crystal of Duplicity. With a final smirk, he vanished - leaving behind a pack of blackrock golems.

When the golems were gone, Dasha returned with the steed and led the way to where Dawn would spend eternity. Just to the west of Empath Abbey, on a small peninsula, our Queen was laid to rest with her husband. The headstone reads:

Rest In Peace.

Queen Dawn Of Britannia
Warrior Of Virtue And Bringer Of Hope
Ors, Her Beloved Consort
Reunited In Eternity

May Queen Dawn be free of the evils which plagued her in life, may her soul forever be at peace.

Martyna Z'muir, Library of Sosaria

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Harbinger Part III

Submitted by UO_Herald on February 25, 2011 at 6:57 PM CST

Originally posted 25 Feb 2011 20:37:36 EST by Calvin Crowner on the UO Herald:

Uskadesh ripped the knife cleanly from the last of his crew, his wings and robes doused in blood.  The look of denial and confusion clear in the dying gargoyle’s eyes as the minister cleaned the blade on the jaw of the recently deceased.

He spoke soothingly, bending his neck so the young one could hear, “These are the last words you will hear: know you have served your queen valiantly.”

With that he was on his way:  a message to give and glory to receive. The guards-in-training had shown flashes of brilliance in their fight. However, even has a minister he had many years more battle experience in battle than the whelps were dispatched with scant effort.

He felt comfort and peace in that this nasty piece of business was finally and victoriously ended.  But, running for so long was taking its toll.  His wings and lungs screamed for rest.  A half moon assisted him with the shroud of shadow as he sprung and forced his body through the wilderness toward the rendezvous point.

In Uskadesh’s flight he could feel the presence of hounds growing around him as he closed the distance to his destination.  Virtuebane had arranged for a form of entourage. 

Quite fitting, he thought.  I think I shall have a few of these as pets as part of my reward.

To read the full story on the forums, click HERE.

Harbinger Part II

Submitted by UO_Herald on February 25, 2011 at 2:58 PM CST

Originally posted 25 Feb 2011 16:07:53 EST by Calvin Crowner on the UO Herald:

Uskadesh felt his body might be catapulted over the side of the ship at any moment. If nothing else, he was thankful he didn’t have to run his errand on the deck of a foreign vessel.

He winced adjusting his shoulder, feeling his wings press against the sea’s attacking winds.  The minister flared then tucked his wings inward, balancing himself on the deck.

He embraced the sea as Gargoyles embraced anything powerful and deadly: with reverence.  Salt, mist, and the pungent promise of a distant storm bit his nostrils. There was hardly a need for a proper crew, so he mustered several recruits enlisted for The Void guard post, offering them a chance for adventure. He’d eliminate them once his task was done.

This was going to be a one-way journey in many respects.

They’d passed a few merchant vessels, and for the most part the trip to this point had been uneventful.  Most of the human ships gave them wide berth once they could distinguish the Gargoyle crew. He shook his horns laughing, and shouting to the helmsman, “We should raise pirate colors, perhaps we’d get a better reception from our neighbors.”

To read the full story on the forums, click HERE.

Harbinger Part I

Submitted by UO_Herald on February 24, 2011 at 8:50 PM CST

Originally posted 24 Feb 2011 21:29:19 EST by Calvin Crowner on the UO Herald:

“How do you feel?” Uskadesh’s voice cleaved through Zhah’s focus.

Disappointment obvious on her face, a dulcet yet dangerous alto dripping from her lips: “I am as I should be.”

The Queen’s offices held sound quite well. While comforts were normally minimal in Ter Mur – in-keeping with the austere ethics and ritual of her people -- Zhah often felt the need to retire to this space. She now felt the need to indulge in the deep crimson of the rugs beneath her talons. Often she’d allow her mind to drift in the tapestries, stories of battle and death sewn therein.

Today a solitary slab of hand-crafted marble tore into every image shifting through her mind. The final resting place of the lady warrior bobbed as if a cork in a mass of dark water and shadow. Dark ripples spread from lovingly-carved white stone … now and then colliding and retreating against hidden walls.

“Death of a friend does tend to set things in perspective, Young One.”

Zhah paced the carpets in savage elegance, eyes downcast, savoring the texture embracing her calloused feet. “You are no longer a mentor, Uskadesh. I am now your Queen.”


To read the full story on the forums, click HERE.

Traitors Beware

Submitted by Martyna_Zmuir on February 23, 2011 at 2:36 AM CST
Library of Sosaria

We are a kingdom founded on Virtue, tenants of our civilization which run deep. Many enemies have tried to twist them, to pervert and corrupt them beyond recognition. It is a sad and tired tale.

All too often, this evil goes largely unopposed. This is not one of those occasions. Britannia has its protectors and they have been busy.

Since the murder of Queen Dawn, three traitors have been brought to Justice. They were given the opportunity to surrender peacefully and to face trial before the people. However, they chose to end their lives of violence as their terms: bloody.

Cole, Traitorus Security AgentThe first to be found was Cole, a traitor to the Crown and the Ministry of Security. His life ended in Ilshenar, in a small keep built by the Bane Chosen - paid for by the Queen's blood.

Maggie Keel, a.k.a. Maggie the Red, notorious Blood Coast pirate.The next was the notorious Blood Coast pirate, Maggie Keel, the estranged mother of Captain Christine Keel of the Royal Guard. She sacrificed her entire crew trying to escape the reach of Justice. In the end, no quarter was given.

Philip Stafford, Queen Dawn's tratorus ex-Personal SecretaryThe last to be located, was Philip Stafford, the Queen's ex-Personal Secretary. His allegiance to Virtuebane had extended as far back as the fall of Magincia. He chose to meet his end in the dank recesses of Hythloth, plotting with the Conclave daemons.

These traitors now serve as warning to those who hide their disloyalty, to those who give succor to Virtuebane's fodder. Each of their severed heads rests on a pike in northwestern Britain, gruesome testimony to the grim determination of a besieged nation.

King-Consort Ors, puppet of VirtuebaneA fourth head rests alongside the other three. It is that of Ors, the late Queen's husband. While not a traitor of his own accord, Ors' public act has forever vilified him in the eyes of many. Allegedly, he took his own life due to the grief and dishonor caused by being Virtuebane's tool of assassination. A mysterious knight decapitates Ors' corpse.This story was relayed to a group of Ministry of Security agents by a mysterious stranger in blinding white armor moments before he callously severed Ors' head from his body. While the man claimed to be part of a Virtuous sect following a new path to 'the clarity of mind and spirit,' he was the last to see Ors alive...

The macabre display in Britain is meant to loudly declare one message to Britannia's enemies: To those of wicked intent, to those of base desire; flee now, for Evil will find no respite here.

Heads on pikes.

Martyna Z'muir, Library of Sosaria

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Queen Dawn’s Funeral

Submitted by Martyna_Zmuir on February 23, 2011 at 1:04 AM CST
Royal Seal

Dawn Rests in StateOriginally posted February 22nd, 2011 by EM Elizabella on the Great Lakes EM Site:

The funeral of her late Majesty Queen Dawn will be on Saturday, February 26th, at 4 p.m. CST in the throne room of Castle British.

Flowers to decorate her memorial are welcome and can be brought to the funeral.

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In the Shadow of Virtue: A Time of Mourning

Submitted by UO_Herald on February 22, 2011 at 5:55 PM CST

Originally posted 22 Feb 2011 15:12:38 EST by Sherry the Mouse on the UO Herald:

Slowly Sherry climbed up upon the table bearing the marble coffin. Within the coffin held the body of her beloved friend Dawn. Tears slowly ran down into her whiskers as she curled up in one of the flowers that adorned both sides. She could not believe that Dawn was now dead. It was just moments ago it seemed, that she had confided in Sherry, telling her of the plans of the sword and how hopefully it would work and Virtuebane would be eliminated.

She had spoke of her concern and love for Ors, why he had not been found. How she wanted to lead a search for him, but her kingdom needed her in this time of unrest and chaos. She had chosen to lead her kingdom and eliminate the oppressive foe, and yet it had been she that had taken the final blow, by her husbands hand.  He who had been under Virtuebane’s spell, and he who had taken his own life after being released from his mind bond,  after seeing his beloved wife lying at his feet, dead from his hand.

  Through the evening, Sherry watched as people from all lands, came to pay respect to Dawn. She watched as Dasha, Dawn's close friend, had come in, laid her her hand gently on top of the Marble coffin and softly spoke a prayer in the  ancient language of the Meer. She saw Queen Zhah walk solemnly toward the coffin, her great head bowed. She gently lay her taloned hand upon it and spoke softly, " Your death will not be forgotten, Your enemies become my enemies,Your death shall be avenged by your countrymen and friends. Fare well Queen Dawn".  Following Zhah Sherry observed Uskadesh Zhah’s Minster of War lower his head with a slight smirk on his face, Sherry thought to herself what a strange reaction.

All through the long evening Sherry watched and stayed by Dawn's body. Too saddened to leave the one person who had believed in her. What the coming days would bring, she did not know. Exhausted from her tears, Sherry curled up next to the coffin that held her friend and Queen, Dawn the Valiant, and slept.

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No Quarter

Submitted by Martyna_Zmuir on February 16, 2011 at 8:52 PM CST
Royal Britannian Guard

Originally posted February 16th, 2011 by EM Elizabella on the Great Lakes EM Site:

You receive a note:

Red Jolly Roger

Guard meeting, 4 p.m. Saturday. Brit. Counselor Hall. Arrive armed and ready to travel. Let’s end this pirate scourge once and for all. -–Keel

There’s a red flag at the top of the note. You know a black flag is the symbol of pirates out for plunder, what’s a red flag? Then you remember an old pirate shanty about flying the “bloody flag” to declare: no quarter asked, no quarter given.

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Funeral Planning: Eulogies, Elegies, and Memories

Submitted by Martyna_Zmuir on February 16, 2011 at 8:33 PM CST
Royal Seal

Originally posted February 16th, 2011 by EM Elizabella on the Great Lakes EM Site:

“Cover her face; mine eyes dazzle: she died young.”
–from The Duchess of Malfi, by John Webster

Her late majesty, Queen Dawn, is lying in state at Castle British. There will be a funeral, though no date has been set yet. If you would like to speak at the funeral, please email me the text of your speech by February 23rd. It should be no more than 300 words. We will determine who speaks at the funeral based on the submitted entries.

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The High Price of Failure

Submitted by Martyna_Zmuir on February 16, 2011 at 8:20 PM CST
Library of Sosaria

As has been reported previously, Britannia has lost her Queen in the most tragic of ways. I have tried to pen something heartfelt since her murder. However, I have been unable to properly distil my feelings into words that would not appear overly harsh. I knew our Queen. I performed the Oath of Office at her coronation. I was there for her passing from our world.

Her last public speech highlighted her love for her people and her devotion to duty:

The late Queen Dawn"My beloved subjects, you have fought wonderfully well against Virtuebane. I am very proud of you all. No monarch could ask for a better or more loyal people.

I'm pleased to tell you that I've learned of a way we may be able to defeat the evil that menaces our towns. Virtuebane is vulnerable to Humility. I shall imbue my sword with that Virtue. Then I shall lead you into battle against Virtuebane!

Join me as we go forth to our destiny!


Her last act as our queen was to infuse her own family sword with the power of Humility at the Ilshenar shrine so that we may rest easier.

A dazed Ors.The sudden return of her long-lost Ors seemed a miraculous blessing, coming on the eve before the Festival of Love. The Queen embraced her dazed husband, unprepared for what was to come. Sadly, Ors' mind had been thoroughly warped by Virtuebane's evil. As Dawn pulled away, her face beaming, a thin stiletto blade thrust through her heart.

As Dawn crumpled to the ground at her husband's feet, his face didn't show any emotion. Even Virtuebane's arrival failed to register. The vile archdaemon gloated over his use of the human puppet, before releasing Ors' mind so he could torment the man further.

His mind freed for the first time in months, Ors saw his dead wife before him, the stiletto still in his hand, slick with her blood. Grief overcoming him, he threw down the blade and fled through the moongate.

The Archdaemon VirtuebaneVirtuebane's laughter echoed off the sides of the canyon as he retrieved the knife. He then held it aloft, claiming, "With this dagger, I control Love. Love in the form of a dagger rather than a candle...appropriate for the pain Love can cause."

Ignoring the derisive shouts of the crowd, Virtuebane continued to boast. "Corrupted Books of Truth so many secretly hoard... I control your Virtues! The cities WILL fall. The bells will be tainted." He then callously prodded Dawn's body, searching for the infused sword - a prize he did not find. Sometime during the commotion, the sword had disappeared. Roaring in anger, the archdaemon set a legion of his blackrock golems on the crowd. If whoever stole it wouldn't give him the sword, he would take it from their corpse.

The battle with the golems was long and hard fought, but ultimately the Britannians were victorious. As the reality of the Queen's death overcame the victory, Minister Magnus Grey arrived to retrieve the body.

He led those still able to the throne room of Castle Britannia, where he began to speak:

Minister of Security Magnus Grey"A great tragedy has befallen Britannia this night. Our queen is dead, beyond the reach of healers or mages.

As is true of many political leaders, she was sometimes controversial. None though can deny that Queen Dawn dedicated her life to Britannia. Queen Dawn was a warrior, with a strong sense of duty, and a devotion to the virtue of Valor.

There is much work to be done in the coming weeks. We will hold a memorial for our late queen. We will strive to wrest that dagger from the foul hands of Virtuebane. We will seek out Dawn's ancestral sword, which she gave her life to imbue. We will continue to defend our cities.

Most importantly, we will avenge our queen, we will avenge Virtuebane's insult to our great nation, we will avenge his desecration of the Principles and the Virtues!"

Several days have now passed since these events and Britannia has tried to regain some semblance of normalcy. In fact, one of the architects of the queen's murder has already been brought to justice.

A man named Cole, a traitor to the Ministry of Security, was the one to supply Virtuebane with both the stiletto and the unusual poison that coated it. He was tracked to a small fortress near the ruins of Montor in Ilshenar, where he chose to meet a very violent end.

Presently, the body of Queen Dawn lies in state in the Castle throne room. A memorial service is being planned, but does not yet have a firm date. Citizens have been invited to speak during the service and those wishing to are directed to send a copy of their words to the castle staff.

Sarcophagus of Queen Dawn

Tangible evil lurks in the dark places of our world, skittering into the light only long enough to inflict grievous wounds on the virtuous. We pretend to be outraged, even to the point of making a show of slaying one or two vile beats. But ultimately, we tend to allow the larger evils to stalk their prey without contest.

We watched Magincia destroyed by an extradimensional daemon horde, then looted the city while its citizens fled. We allowed a dictator to seize our throne, blithely ignoring his ties to the Shadowlords. We allowed the Bane Chosen to make war against others without protest, some even joining them. We feigned shock when the Bane Chosen invaded Magincia and summoned their daemon master.

When evil is allowed to roam free, to subvert our culture as they see fit, how can we claim to be a Virtuous people?

Our queen lies dead. Our cities are under constant threat. How much longer can we continue to pay the high price of failure?

Martyna Z'muir, Library of Sosaria

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Stages of Grief (EM Fiction)

Submitted by Martyna_Zmuir on February 14, 2011 at 11:56 PM CST
Royal Seal

Originally posted February 14th, 2011 by EM Malachi on the Great Lakes EM Site:


Princess Mirendel couldn’t fall asleep yet. The small dragon poked her head out from under the blanket and waited. The pretty lady she called “Mama” always came to tell her a bedtime story. She would wait for her.


Magnus Grey handed his kryss to the guard and motioned for him to wait outside the interrogation room. The guard started to protest, but caught the look in the Minister of Security’s eyes. He saluted and left in a hurry.

Winged VirtueThe Bane Chosen prisoner sneered, “Is this supposed to scare me?”

Grey’s expression did not change, “Yes.”


Ricardo held the shimmering crystal in his hands, trying to make it do the impossible. “They’re going to blame me for what happened. I never meant for this. She was fair to me. I owe her. I can fix this. This crystal remade the world. Surely it can bring one person back…”


The castle was cold and quiet. Sherry buried herself in the nest of cloth scraps and wool. The small mouse shivered as she wept for her friend. “Her story wasn’t supposed to end like this.”


The candlelight flickered across Dasha’s feline features. The Meer sat vigil beside Dawn’s still body, watching the shadows move with the flame. Every human and Meer magic had been tried. She wasn’t coming back. “I will miss you, my friend.”

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In the Shadow of Virtue: A Thin Ray of Light

Submitted by UO_Herald on February 10, 2011 at 4:59 PM CST

Originally posted 10 Feb 2011 13:44:16 EST by Mark Steelman on the UO Herald:

Sword in hand, Dawn cautiously peered through the narrow window facing the balcony.  With her free hand she buttoned her overcoat.  It was late, she wasn’t sure how late.  She had been lying in bed trying to sleep when she had heard a soft knock on her balcony door.  Both moons were new this night and it was darker than usual.  She blinked her eyes a few times to clear the cobwebs from her weary mind.  On the stone railing of the balcony crouched a lone gargoyle, facing out into the courtyard.  Long robes and a hood concealed their identity.

Dawn slid the bolt from the balcony door and opened it, keeping her sword between herself and the stranger.  A hushed but familiar voice spoke as the gargoyle turned and lifted her hood, “I’m glad you were able to wake; I understand humans need a lot of sleep.”

To read the full article on the forums, click HERE.

February 14th Session of the High Council of Britannia Cancelled

Submitted by DaKaren on February 8, 2011 at 9:52 PM CST
GL High Council

From the office of Chancellor DaKaren:


Due to the fact that the next session of the High Council or Britannia is due to fall on the Festival of Love, or Valentine's Day, it has been decided that we shall cancel this meeting.

The High Council will reconvene for the 357th session on February 28th.

May a bounty of Love and Peace be yours on this festive day.

-Lord DaKaren,
Chancellor of the High Council of Britannia

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Submitted by Martyna_Zmuir on February 8, 2011 at 9:29 PM CST
EM Updates

ValentinesOriginally posted February 8th, 2011 by EM Elizabella on the Great Lakes EM Site:

There will be a Valentine’s Day Event on Sunday, February 13th, at 8 p.m. CST. Meet at the Brit. Counselor Hall and be prepared for battle!

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