Evolution of the Lahessi: Chapter X & XI and set file!

Login or register to post comments
Sat, 2017-06-03 05:20
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture


Magic: the Gathering (C) Wizards of the Coast, Evolution of the Lahessi logo made with es.cooltext.com


Set Name: Evolution of the Lahessi

Set Number: 1 of 2 of the Lahessi block

Number of Cards: 269

Development codename: "Watch"

Expansion Code: LHS

Design and Development: Korakhos

Prerrelease/Release: TBA

Set File: Set file here


Things to expect wrote:
Here's a list of things you can expect from this set, but beware, one of them is fake! Let's see if you can find it:
1- Pirates, Minotaurs and Vampires in all five colors
2- First seen in Antiquities, last seen in Oath of the Gatewatch
3- A Legendary Instant
4- A reanimator spell that will make Dread Return look like a bad card
5- A card with CMC over 20
6- Last time it cost 14, now it costs 10
7- A new type of counter
8- A kill spell that you can use as many times as you want as long as you have the mana

Sat, 2017-06-03 05:33
marioware2
Moderator
marioware2's picture

Your video is unavailable A sad 'frowny'

Sat, 2017-06-03 14:35
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

Yeah, that's expected since I messed up the settings Stick out your tongue All fixed now, also added what to expect Winking smiley

Sat, 2017-06-03 15:00
jacqui-pup
Featured Set Editor - Best Set of 2015 - Community Award
jacqui-pup's picture

Right, Medranos.

Curious how you're going to get this plane to be evenly color balanced, since it seems to be skewed heavily towards Green mana symbol flavorwise...

[center]"It's exciting to create something that demonstrates how clever you are, that you pushed in a direction that players didn't anticipate. The problem is that the point of game design isn't to be clever, it's to create a great game." --Mark Rosewater

Sat, 2017-06-03 15:37
WindyDelcarlo
Administrator - MSE Add-On Award
WindyDelcarlo's picture

So, I'm concerned about pretty much all of these being real

Sat, 2017-06-03 16:51
marioware2
Moderator
marioware2's picture

Cute trailer. A happy smile

PLEASE tell me you aren't doing legendary instants >.>

Sat, 2017-06-03 18:09
WindyDelcarlo
Administrator - MSE Add-On Award
WindyDelcarlo's picture

I'm wondering if "Legendary Instant" means "an instant with the type legendary" or "an instant with a Legendary-esque effect". (Possibly something along the lines of ultima or Chaotic's [a game I'm sure no one's heard of] "Unique")

Sun, 2017-06-04 02:52
HerziQuerzi
Creative Direction Award Best Mechanic Award
HerziQuerzi's picture

maybe double faced

Phasing
This phases in or out before you untap during each of your untap steps. While it's phased out, it's treated as though it doesn't exist.
Set Hub

Wed, 2017-07-12 00:06
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

Spoiler:
MEDRANOS, PLANE OF ABUNDANCE

Letter from Elanyan scout to Ankryss

Dear Ankryss,

Today we found an entirely new creature while scouting the Stormy Peaks. It appeared out of a rocky crevasse and it immediately sensed, quickly skittering our way. We were amused by the way it looked: the amalgam of colors, the hissing noise it made as it advanced, the sharpness of its fangs. We carefully approached it even though it didn’t seem to pose a threat due to its small size, but it was a mistake…

The creature was unnaturally fast and it jumped at the face of Glendros, tearing a significant amount of skin and flesh from it. He threw it to the ground howling with pain and stabbed it with his spear; making is screech while spurting out slightly acidic blood.

We were stunned at the violence that creature had presented and, before getting any closer to its corpse I was smart enough to poke it with my own spear, causing it to bite it and split the lance in two, apparently being able to reflexively attack once after dying.

Glendros has been feeling ill ever since the attack and none of our healers seem to be able to make him feel better. I’ll send you this creature’s corpse alongside this letter in the hope that you of all Medranians will be able to figure out what this is, and possibly find a cure for its venomous blood and fluids.

May the grace of Medranos be with you,
Ryuz of the Nertana Tribe

PART I: THE GORGON THREAT

CHAPTER I: THE HUNT

The deer strode gracefully through the undergrowth until it found a place to rest. Not feeling any immediate threat, it decided to stop and began feeding on the thick grass at its feet.

The forest was an enormous conglomerate of trees that seemed to be of over a thousand different species, as were the bushes and flowers. But that wasn’t all, the creatures that populated it were also uncannily varied: elves, beasts, faeries, nantuko, deer, birds, merfolk, every single race in Medranos was represented in that place, even the gorgons… The forest seemed to extend forever, which earned it the name of the Eternal Fronds.

As the deer ate, something rustled in a tree above it, causing it to immediately become alert and start running. As it fled from a possible predator, Orriana Galerider jumped from branch to branch chasing it. She had earned her last name thanks to her graceful gait and her ability to move through the Fronds without making a single sound. The only reason she’d rustled those leaves was because she needed the deer to be running at full speed if she was going to try her new trick.


A few seconds later, she was on a tree immediately above her prey, and she took her chance.

She jumped off the branch as she swiftly removed an arrow from her quiver. As gravity pulled her head-first towards the ground, her mane of glorious red hair flowed beautifully. Falling upside down, she sharpened her hazel eyes and released the arrow a mere second before she hit the ground, rolling gracefully and immediately standing up to see her work as she heard a thud that indicated the deer had fallen.

She turned around and saw her prey lying on the floor, blood oozing from its right eye, where the projectile had hit it.

“Dammit” she muttered frustrated “I missed!”

She had been practicing this move for weeks now and she thought she’d be able to pull it off. She had aimed at the space between the deer’s eyes. She had struck her target, and it had been a great shot, but she needed more than great for what she was preparing for: she needed perfect.

In exactly one week the most important yearly event in Medranos would take place: the Great Hunt.

Once every year, an ethereal elk baptized the Spirit of the Hunt appeared somewhere in the Eternal Fronds and treaded them for two hours, vanishing until the next Hunt immediately after. Medranians held a competition that lasted those two hours, and the instructions were simple: whoever hunted the Spirit of the Hunt would immediately become the winner. But it wasn’t as easy as it sounded, since only two hunters in all history had ever managed that feat. The Spirit was swift, agile and tricky, being able to avoid even the fastest arrows and step away from all hunters, dodging even the best concealed traps. In the case that the Spirit wasn’t hunted, whoever had hunted the most creatures would be crowned winner of that year’s event; but of course they wouldn’t win eternal glory and a place in history.

Each year she’d avoided hunting minor things and gone straight for the Spirit of the Hunt, always failing, but she’d been practicing hard for this year’s event, and she was hell-bent on winning. Besides, this year the competition would be tough, since she had invited a hunter she’d befriended during her trips through the Multiverse: Garruk Wildspeaker.

As a planeswalker she’d seen countless worlds, but it wasn’t until she met Garruk that she’d been inspired by him to go on interplanar hunting trips. As a thank you, she’d invited him to the most important Medranian event of the year.

Her competition this year would be formidable, but she was determined to win.

* * * * *

It was finally the big day! After perfecting her technique Orriana was sure she’d be able to bring down the Spirit of the Hunt. Garruk had arrived two days ago and had stayed in Derrivos, her homeland. All participants were gathered around the Alluring Ancient, the oldest tree of all Medranos and its first ever living being. The tree stood dozens of kilometers tall and was a couple of kilometers wide, being visible from every corner of the plane. Its leaves were wide and bright green, and hundreds of orbs of different colors floated around them.

The Ancient was also a blueprint, for every ecosystem of the plane was embedded in its bark the second it was born, and whoever held a piece of the Ancient could therefore feel every living being. But in order to get a piece of it, druids had to harmonize with it, and only if the Ancient deemed them worthy would it yield a fragment of itself. Many had tried to take it by force but found their attempts foiled, for even the smallest of buds was impossible to break.

A few years ago, the Ancient had granted an entire branch to a nantuko biologist known as Ankryss, who had been honored with the gift and carved it into a staff he used to study life in Medranos, and who was standing on top of one of the Ancient’s massive roots in order to host the ceremony.

“People of Medranos” he spoke in a wise voice, the mandibles around his mouth making a slight cackling sound “Today is the day most of you have been waiting for! Soon the sun will be immediately atop the Alluring Ancient, and the Spirit of the Hunt will appear once more in the Eternal fronds!"

Everyone cheered. Even Garruk, with his feral and stern appearance, could feel the thrill of what this meant, even if this was his first time in the Hunt.

“The rules are as follows: each of you will carry a pouch to store trophies from each creature you hunt. Each satchel is magically bound to you, so you won’t be able to claim a trophy from something someone else has hunted. Whoever hunts down the Spirit of the Hunt automatically wins the hunt, but remember that it is an elusive creature, so in the very probable case no one does, whoever has hunted the most creatures will be crowned the winner. In two hours, when the Ancient’s shade covers Lateria, I will call all of you back, since the Spirit of the Hunt will be gone by then. You are now free to traverse the fronds and set whatever preparations you need for your hunt. We’ll see each other again in two hours. May the grace of Medranos be with you!”

“And with you!” replied everyone in unison (Garruk had been taught the proper ceremonial formalities during his stay with Orriana) as they headed towards the gigantic forest in hope to be this year’s champion.

The second the introduction was over, Orriana sped towards the trees behind her. She had half an hour before the Spirit of the Hunt appeared and it would do so in a random part of the Eternal Fronds, so she had to cover as much ground as possible with her wards while at the same time administering her energy properly so she wouldn’t be too tired when the time came.

Things would be much easier if she’d harmonized with the Alluring Ancient and owned a piece of it, since she’d know exactly where her prey would be at all times, but no hunter in Medranian history had managed to do it, only the druids, and most of them were nantuko, since most of those insects seemed to prefer to study living beings rather than hunt them down. Orriana envied their connection to the Ancient, but nothing else, since she could never see herself as a druid; she was a woman of action!

When she was offered the choice of which tribe to join, she immediately went with the Coeros (the hunting and taming tribe), leaving behind the Nertana (explorers and questers) and the Earthenlore (the druids). She had heard rumors of a fourth tribe rising in Derrivos, who called themselves the Nroxi, but she doubted they’d be relevant at least in the foreseeable future.

She interrupted her thoughts when she saw a wild wolf striding through the woods. These creatures were perfect for what she was looking for: ever since they were born, they started growing new forms of life on their hide, earning them not fur, but a coat of leaves and smaller organisms to cover them, resulting in a gorgeous appearance. When they died, they left no body behind, instead erupting into the hundreds of creatures that it sheltered in its body, making it impossible to collect a hunting trophy from it, meaning no one would be hunting those.

She jumped to the ground and started singing, a soothing, warm melody that matched the sweetness of her voice, and the wolf immediately stopped and headed towards her, enchanted by her spell. She whispered a few words and her hand started glowing. She pressed it against the creature’s forehead and its eyes glowed blue, then it turned around and continued its path, ignoring anything had been done to it. Now that wolf would be her eyes in the forest…

She continued spreading wards and recruiting wildlife throughout what was left of her half hour and, when she felt all was ready, she sat atop a tree and took a break. In a few minutes the Spirit of the Hunt would trigger one of her many wards and she’d need to be rested. She opened her canteen and took a few sips of its contents, feeling immediately revitalized. Ankryss always prepared her a special brew he concocted with the Alluring Ancient’s sap and the purest water from Krallyna (home of the merfolk), resulting in a drink that could take away all forms of tiredness from a person, regardless of how exhausted they may be. She appreciated her friend’s care; she was one of the few people he prepared that for…

She was startled by a sudden vibration that shook her whole body. Her eyes gleamed as one of her eyes in the skies triggered: the Spirit of the hunt had been spotted in the northwest quarter. She was only a few kilometers away, this was her chance!

She sprang to her feet and started running as fast as she could, honoring her name by stepping from branch to branch with the swiftness and grace of a breeze, not making the slightest sound to alert of her coming.

As she approached her prey, she saw all kinds of hunters headed in the same direction: merfolk with large tridents, nantuko with ornate staves, other elves with spears and bows, some even riding a beast they’d tamed, elementals who were ready to weaponized their whole body, even some of the Memekri who’d changed their aspect to match that of the most powerful predators. Everyone was focused on the same prize.
She was surprised she hadn’t seen Garruk anywhere among the diverse group. Knowing him as she did, she was sure he’d be exclusively after the Spirit of the Hunt as herself.

She ran alongside the others for a while, until the thick fronds in front of them started glowing with a pale white light: her prize was near! A few seconds later, the very subtle sound of hoofsteps against the ground gave way to a beautiful, majestic stag. There it was, the Spirit of the Hunt in all its glory. Unlike any other Medranian creature, it had a pale, almost phantasmal aura surrounding it that gave it the ethereal appearance that had earned it its name. It was taller and burlier than any other elk in all of the plane, and despite its tough build, it was as fast as the wind, and twice as elusive.

The real hunt began. Every single hunter present charged at once, not caring about anything other than the creature they were chasing, which had almost immediately turned around and started fleeing the persecutors with uncanny speed.

Orriana felt the thrill of the hunt fill her as adrenaline rushed through her veins. In the ten years she’d been participating in the Hunt, she’d only seen the Spirit four. The first time was when she first participated, where she encountered it accidentally while hunting minor creatures. She was too slow to even react to the opportunity and the elk was gone before she could attempt to strike, immediately followed by a horde of hunters. After that encounter she felt inspired and, after a few years of practice, she made her fifth attempt only about capturing the Spirit, but she missed it the first few years. After mastering the art of wards from Ankryss, she’d found the creature the three last years consecutively, and this time she was in for the kill.

As she heard some of her comrades stumbling or crashing against trees while attempting to match the creature’s speed, she decided to be more careful and relent on her own velocity. She began preparing her arrow when something unique happened.

As a thunderous roar echoed through the woods and the ground trembled, a hoard of beasts started heading towards the hunters, stomping everything on their way. It was made of creatures Orriana had never seen before, they didn’t seem Medranian at all, which could only mean one thing…

Garruk she thought with a smile He is going for the Spirit after all…


She hastened her pace, escaping any tree that the beasts brought down with mere seconds of advantage. After the stampede was gone, only a few hunters remained unharmed, and even they were slowly brought down one by one either from exhaustion or by falling into traps somebody else had set. Orriana was all alone, and she was getting closer to the Spirit of the Hunt by the second.

As her heart beat so fast she felt it was going to explode, she placed her hand on an arrow, ready to try the move she’d been practicing all year.

She jumped off the branch as she swiftly removed an arrow from her quiver. As gravity pulled her head-first towards the ground, her mane of glorious red hair flowed beautifully. Falling upside down, she sharpened her hazel eyes and released the arrow a mere second before she hit the ground, rolling gracefully and immediately standing up to see her work… except she heard not the sound of her prey falling, but the sound of her arrow hitting a tree!

She immediately turned around and saw the Spirit of the Hunt who’d swayed away from her shot in a split second. But in avoiding her strike, it was not able to dodge the next trap. As its right hoof stepped on the ground below it, it triggered the vine that had been carefully hidden under a pile of leaves and it was immediately pulled upward, hanging defenseless before Garruk’s axe flew straight to its forehead, killing it quickly and painlessly.

Orriana would never forget what happened next: the Spirit of the Hunt exploded in a symphony of colors and lights, disintegrating into millions of tiny particles that flew straight into Garruk, covering him in an iridescent aura that shot skywards to indicate the world that someone had hunted down the Spirit.

Orriana sighed in awe and resignation as she heard Ankryss’ call indicating the Great Hunt was over.

Tue, 2017-06-06 17:10
marioware2
Moderator
marioware2's picture

  • Hunter's Stratagem looks good - clean design, if poooossibly a bit strong? I'm picking at straws. This card is good.
  • Tamer of the Wild needs to cost 3 mana symbolGreen mana symbol, especially at common.
  • Symbiotic Wolf is sweet!
  • I gotta say, after seeing Symbiotic Wolf, I'm a little disappointed Spirit of the Hunt doesn't say "put a number of +1/+1 counters on target creature equal to ~'s power"... probably for the best though!
  • Garruk looks fine, if a little bland. For a 5-mana 'walker, I think his plus could grant +2/+2.

Tue, 2017-06-06 17:52
Simonbarsinister
Simonbarsinister's picture

I'm pretty sure spirit of the hunt is already the name of an mtg card from innistrad

Tue, 2017-06-06 19:59
WindyDelcarlo
Administrator - MSE Add-On Award
WindyDelcarlo's picture

Pre-lili Garruk knows what he's doing.

Wed, 2017-06-07 03:00
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

@mario: thanks for the input, I really appreciate it, Tamer of the Wild's cost has been changed, and I'll consider your suggestions on Spirit and Garruk, glad you liked the wolf!

@Simon: what happened is obvious: WotC stole the idea from my mind when I had it three years ago and decided to release it last year to beat me to it! I'm suing them for plagiarizing my intelectual property! (or changing my card to Spirit of the Great Hunt)

@Windy: he sure does, although I haven't decided yet where Medranos falls in the Magic timeline, I guess I'm just hoping Garruk eventually finds a cure...

Wed, 2017-07-12 00:10
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

Spoiler:
CHAPTER II: THE CELEBRATION

As the many races of Medranos sang and cheered around a gigantic bonfire while enjoying a banquet, Orriana sat a few meters away from the crowd, the only link between her and the celebrants being the heat and light from the fire, which reached her even in her seclusion. She hadn’t touched her food yet, and she had barely tasted her wine, even though she loved it and only got to drink it once a year. She sighed heavily when she saw Ankryss head towards her.

“Mind if I join you” asked the nantuko gently, she gave him a slight nod and he sat beside her. “Why are you not partying? You love the afterparty almost as much as you love the hunt.”

“You know me better than anyone, you should be able to figure it out by yourself” she replied coldly.

“You really wanted this victory, didn’t you?” he asked.

His words echoed in and got lost in the babble of the celebration. She sighed once more, trying to hold back the tears.

“I could’ve done it, you know? I had the Spirit on my sight, my shot was perfect, and yet it avoided it in a mere split second. Why couldn’t it avoid Garruk’s trap and fall for mine?” she asked frustrated.

“Sometimes life goes like that. You cannot expect anything to go exactly as planned… Besides, I’ve been monitoring the entire hunt and even you have to admit Garruk did an excellent job.”

“He did” conceded the planeswalker with a joyless smile.

They stared at each other for a few quiet seconds, neither of us daring break the silence, until Ankryss had an idea.

“I’m going to do something I’ve never done before Orriana, I’m going to lend you my staff” he said.

The woman was stunned, Ankryss’ legendary staff, granted to her. She extended her arm expectantly, all the grim affliction that had burdened her a few minutes ago replaced with anxiety. The nantuko handed over his instrument and she grabbed it firmly. All of Medranos would be at the palm of her hand, every single creature, every single living being running through her fingers and connected to her.
She closed her eyes ready to feel the full power of life course through her, but nothing happened… When she opened her eyes she saw the staff as just a piece of wood; all the runes on its cortex were not shining like they did when Ankryss held it.

“What am I doing wrong?” she asked immediately with a hint of desperation.

“You’re doing nothing wrong, Orriana, you’re just not ready to wield the power of the Alluring Ancient, and even a portion of its entity will refuse it to those who are unprepared. As a hunter, it’ll be very difficult for you to achieve it, but I believe it can be done, so don’t lose hope. You still have your whole life ahead of you, maybe you’ll even mature in the process…”

The planeswalker was hurt by her friend’s words. Yes, he only wanted what was best for her, but it still stung knowing he didn’t consider her mature enough. She handed back the staff and, the second it returned to its owner, it began glowing once more with the beauty she’d known it for.

“Thanks, Ankryss, I just need some time for myself, I’ll join you in a minute or two.”

The insect nodded solemnly and headed back to the bonfire, but before she could return to her self-pity, another friend came to her: Garruk.

Orriana was a tall woman, but the man was far taller than her, at least half a meter taller in stature, and that difference seemed exacerbated by his muscular build and weathered complexion. Instead of his usual helmet, he was wearing a special crown of leaves in honor of his victory. The woman could tell he didn’t dislike it, but wasn’t totally comfortable wearing it. If only he knew what she would do for that honor…

“Hi, Garruk” she said in a monotonous voice.

“Hi, let me join you. There’s too many people speaking to me, they all want to get to know me better, but it gets old quick…” he said with a deep, guttural voice.

“Has your name already been inscribed in the Ancient?” she asked trying to conceal her envy.

“It has, apparently I’ll be part of your history forever.”

Yes, he would.

“You deserve this as much as I do” he said “I couldn’t have done it without you.”

No, he couldn’t have, yet he was the one earning all the credit.

“Do you know why I like the wild, why I get along better with beasts than with others of my kind?”

Orriana had never asked herself that, whenever he was with her he seemed more civilized than when he hunted, she could barely believe that his feral side was his predominant one.

“I like the quiet of nature, I like the peace of mind, the purity of it all. Nature is wise, living in Medranos you should know that better than me. And beasts, they are just… true. If you live among them you realize all their intentions are pure, they do not deceive you, and they don’t hold anything from you…” he added, apparently expecting a response.

“I’m jealous, ok? I envy the fact that I could’ve been the champion of the Hunt, I could’ve hunted the Spirit and won eternal glory. I wanted all that, and you took it all from me…” she said gloomily “What am I saying, of course you didn’t. I missed the shot, I may have had a second chance but I can never be certain of that! I’m just lashing out at you because blaming you is easier than admitting I failed!”

She sighed heavily, since she hadn’t realized she’d began breathing more rapidly. She started calming down as she felt a weight being relieved from her soul.

“Feeling better?” asked her friend.

“Much” she replied.

“There’s always next year, you know?” he said supportingly.

“You’re right, there’s always next year” she replied with a smile as they both returned with the rest of their comrades.

As they walked, Garruk asked her about how people that were so devoted to life and abundance hunted for sport.

“Well, us hunters serve one of the most important purposes in Medranos: we control the growth. Medranos is constantly evolving and adapting. Ecosystems are born by the minute, and that can lead to overabundance. That’s where we come in. By hunting down the creatures we ensure that this world doesn’t grow out of control, and we filter out old creature to make room for new ones. We understand the balance of the plane, and do our best to serve it.”

They rejoined the feast and Orriana spoke with glee about what an honor it had been to hunt alongside Garruk and how she was definitely going to get the Spirit of the Hunt next year, since it reappeared each and every Great Hunt regardless of whether it had been caught or not.

After an hour of enjoyment at the bonfire something unexpected happened.

As someone screamed, all turned around to see a petrified body and a gorgon that slithered towards them. Orriana immediately turned to Garruk.

“Close your eyes, now! Trust only your other senses!”

She closed her own eyes and sharpened her hearing. She could hear the creature wriggle through the crowd as she ran to the Ancient, since she’d left her weapons on one of its roots. She quickly grabbed her bow and quiver and ran, avoiding everyone who stood on her way with perfect pace even though she couldn’t see them.

For a second she lost track of the gorgon in the cacophony, but as the people dispersed, she could hear a hiss, and immediately fired an arrow in its direction.

The slither that followed indicated her target was still alive, and moving fast among her comrades. She hoped she hadn’t hit anyone as she prepared a second arrow, but the thuds that followed and the scream indicated the gorgon had been subdued.

“It’s safe” screamed a voice she recognized as that of a merfolk due to its gurgling undertones.

She opened her eyes and saw the gorgon pinned to the floor, her eyes covered with a leather strap as it squirmed to be free, the many people holding her down ensuring she couldn’t. The planeswalker took a quick glance to the left and saw her stuck on the ground, and sighed in relief.

“What’s the damage?” she asked Ankryss.

“Three victims, but they don’t seem to be hopeless. I’ll brew an elixir and try to bring them back, it seemed she wasn’t here to kill us…”

“What did you come here to do?!” asked Orriana enraged, how dare anyone interrupt the celebration of the greatest Medranian feast?

“Orriana, calm down” said Elegos, one of the most renowned Coeros “We’ll handle this, this is not your matter to meddle in, not yet at least.”

The woman couldn’t argue with him, so she quietly retrieved, followed by Garruk, who ensured her nothing had happened to him.

* * * * *

The very next day, after the gorgon had been dealt with and its victims were in the process of revitalization, Orriana went to visit Ankryss. She’d set up camp in the Eternal Fronds rather than return to her home, and she’d slept poorly thinking about the events of last night.

“So, what happened?” she asked the druid.

“She seemed to be here to extract information. She was looking to bring live victims to her mistress since there seems to be a matter that’s concerning her deeply…”

“What could that be?”

“Even I cannot tell that, Orriana.”

“Ankyss, this is the third gorgon attack this week, they’re starting to become more confident on us, they seem to look to invade us…”

“She didn’t seem to want that.”

“She’s a gorgon, she can’t be trusted. Please tell me we can take some action!”

“Elegos is forming a party to head to Gyradros, they want to see what’s causing such turmoil in the gorgons’ realm…”

“I’d like to join it.”

“I’ll give word of you to Elegos, but I can’t promise anything.”

“Ankryss, eventually I’ll be the one making the calls in Medranos, I think I could use this experience.”

“First of all, for that to happen we need you alive. Second of all, you’re still only a candidate for the Warden title. You still need to prove yourself worthy, even if you’re the most promising of them.”

“I’m the only ‘walker, I have an advantage over them.”

“Yes, but beware… don’t rely too strongly on that quality, being able to escape doesn’t exactly make for a great Warden.”

She couldn’t argue with him. She liked that about him, whenever she got too over-excited over a matter he would help her get her feet back on the ground…

“Thanks for your advice, Ankryss… will you tell them to include me in the expedition?”

“I will, Orriana. And don’t worry, I have all my faith in you, after all I was the one who nominated you…”

She smiled, her bright white teeth gleaming in the sunlight.

“Will you join the party?”

“I’m afraid I cannot. I have received a special package. Apparently a new creature has been found in the Stormy Peaks, and I can’t wait to study it and what it can bring to Medranos!”

They bid each other farewell and Orriana headed back home.

Many kilometers away, deep inside a dark palace built entirely out of petrified bodies, a creature’s eyes ceased to glow as its vision finalized. He called for one of his gorgon mistresses and closed his eyes to avoid meeting her gaze.

“Yesssss?” hissed the creature.

“Tell her highness that the plan worked. A group will be sent here to investigate on your recent activity.”

The creature immediately turned around and quickly slither towards the throne room, which was a huge hall almost completely covered in darkness. At its center stood a stone throne, dozens of petrified faces screaming could be seen in it. What couldn’t be seen was the creature that sat atop it, her large figure covered by the shadows.

“Missssstresssss” said the gorgon “Your plan hasssssss worked. They are coming.”

“Excellent” replied the Unfathomable as her hair squirmed and a smile revealed her fangs “Soon we’ll get the answers we need.”

Fri, 2017-06-09 04:31
fluffyDeathbringer
Moderator
fluffyDeathbringer's picture

Scry 3 needs a period after it since it's an action word.

Remind yourself that overconfidence is a slow and insidious killer.

Avatar by rickenfe13. goats are gay

Sat, 2017-06-10 04:42
RJ
RJ's picture

I'll second the comment on Garruk's +1. For his cost, it makes sense to be a +2/+2.

Please ignore the clearly insane electrical engineer behind the instrument panel. His meds won't wear off until Thur- it's Friday?? Already?! Oh dear.

Wed, 2017-07-12 00:12
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

Planeswalker's Guide to Medranos


Map made with map creator

Medranos is the most abundant plane in the Multiverse. Each and every day new ecosystems appear and disappear, and life is always developing and growing in completely new ways. What would take years to develop in any other world takes at most weeks in Medranos.

The Races of Medranos

Being as varied as it is, Medranos has hundreds of different species of flora and fauna. The most prominent are:
Elves: One of the dominant races, they reside mostly in Derrivos. They were the first sentient race to populate Medranos.
Nantuko: These antropomorphic insects are another prominent race, mostly known for their druids.
Giants: Though not necessarily violent, other races tend to avoid them since crossing their paths usually means conflict.
Elementals: Forces of nature made incarnate, they roam different corners of Medranos and stick mostly to themselves, rarely interacting with other sentient races.
Merfolk and Faeries: Two races that developed a symbiotic coexistence.
Gorgons: Not native to the original Medranos. They were created by the planeswalker Malextros and have become a part of Medranos with the years.

Moorlings: Created by the gorgons as servants by extracting the remaining vitality of petrified victims and fusing it into a body made from elements of the marsh.
Saprolings: They exist in larger quantities than in other planes since they are born from other living beings.
Sprareos: A particular race of beasts. They are born with spores and seeds stuck to their hides, making them walking ecosystems. As they tread Medranos, they spread said seeds to ensure a continuous cycle of life.
Kotoro: Catlike creatures with the added bonus of also carrying smaller species in their fur.
Memekri: The most dazzling species in Medranos, Memekri have no physical form, they're beings of energy who can project themselves physically by imitating other creatures:

The Locations of Medranos

The Eternal Fronds


The eternal fronds lie at the center of Medranos. It is a gigantic forest that seems unending, earning its name. At least one group of each Medranian species resides in the Eternal Fronds. Nantuko live exclusively in this location, building homes inside trees surrounding the Alluring Ancient.
The Alluring Ancient is the oldest living being in all of Medranos. It was the first form of life to appear and is a living witness of the plane, with every single creature leaving a mark in it the second it is born.

Derrivos


The Westernmost location of Medranos, a vast forest where the Elves reside. Derrivan Elves live in huts spread throughout the country. They are divided in three tribes: the Earthenlore (druids), the Nertana (explorers) and the Coeros (hunters), although members of different tribes live in same locations, for all factions are considered equally important and all elves are blood brothers.

Krallyna


Home of the Merfolk and Faeries. A gigantic waterfall at the north gives way to numerous rivers that drown the land, making it the perfect spot for the mermen to settle. Faeries live in floating nests over the water.

Gyradros


After they cross a mountain range to the east, Krallynan rivers lead into the region of Gyradros, where the water flow stops and it stagnates, giving place to an overgrown marsh region. The environment is polluted by the petrified corpses of those who dare venture into the region, since it's the homeland of the gorgons. At the northermost edge, a palace built entirely out of petrified corpses known as Anastra shelters their leader.
Some merfolk now live in Gyradros after they were seduced by the gorgons and joined their ranks.

The Stormy Peaks of Ellanya


To the east of the Eternal fronds stand the Stormy Peaks a mountain region that reaches unimaginable heights. At the top storms seem to constantly be erupting, making the place almost uninhabitable. The only races that live in Ellanya are Giants and Elementals.

Lateria


At the south of the Eternal Fronds and separated from them by a precipice lies Lateria. Even though it's a grassy area with many forms of life, Medranians consider the region a desert, since it is not as overabundant as the rest of the plane, and growth seems to develop more slowly in that particular region. No sentient creatures are known to live in Lateria.

The Characters of Medranos

Orriana Galerider: The main protagonist of the story. She's a 26 year old planeswalker elf who is one of the greatest hunters of Derrivos. She is a candidate for the title of Warden of Medranos: the person who is in charge of making decisions on what to do whenever a crisis presents itself, and what is the best way to ensure evolution and abundance in the plane.

Garruk Wildspeaker: A planeswalker who befriended Orriana during his travels through the Multiverse and has been invited to Medranos to participate in the Great Hunt, but who will find himself immersed in something bigger than he bargained for.

Ankryss: A nantuko biologist who has harmonized with the Alluring Ancient and was granted one of its branches, which allows him to connect with the whole plane at all times. He is Orriana's closest friend, and the most adept biologist in Medranos.

The Unfathomable: The last remaining gorgon created by Medranos. After both her sisters were killed she secluded herself in Anastra and began breeding more gorgons to form an army. She's the most powerful of Malextros' daughters, and is the only one who knows her own name, for her powers are tied to it, and those who hear it are turned to stone.

Endelya: A Merfolk wizard and one of Ankryss' friends. Niece of the merfolk chieftain. Expert at illusion magic.

Arion and Northia: The other two candidates for the title of Warden.

Elegos: Current Warden of Medranos.

Yrathul: Leader of the Merfolk.

Gondros: Most ancient Elemental in Medranos, knows most of its history. Resides in an unknown location of the Stormy Peaks of Ellanya.

SalThamek: Okthuran planeswalker who was drawn by the potential of the plane, and is seeking to harvest its abundance to enhance his power.

Things to expect wrote:
Here's a list of things you can expect from this set, but beware, one of them is fake! Let's see if you can find it:
1- Pirates, Minotaurs and Vampires in all five colors (changelings)
2- First seen in Antiquities, last seen in Oath of the Gatewatch
3- A Legendary Instant
4- A reanimator spell that will make Dread Return look like a bad card
5- A card with CMC over 20
6- Last time it cost 14, now it costs 10
7- A new type of counter
8- A kill spell that you can use as many times as you want as long as you have the mana

As you can see, not all of the things are exactly what they seem, so those who were worried about some of these need not to Winking smiley. Tomorrow (hopefully) I'll reveal the remaining mechanics.

Sun, 2017-06-11 03:55
jacqui-pup
Featured Set Editor - Best Set of 2015 - Community Award
jacqui-pup's picture

> changeling

I'm going to close my browser now before I explode with joy

[center]"It's exciting to create something that demonstrates how clever you are, that you pushed in a direction that players didn't anticipate. The problem is that the point of game design isn't to be clever, it's to create a great game." --Mark Rosewater

Sun, 2017-06-11 15:53
Guitarweeps
Head Administrator
Guitarweeps's picture

Wow pretty awesome!

Check out my updated set hub.

Wed, 2017-07-12 00:21
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

The mechanics of Evolution of the Lahessi

Let's first take a look at the two that were already spoiled, shall we?

CHANGELING

As told before, Medranos has its own Changeling race, the Memekri. Since they don't have a physical form of their own they imitate others, hence the keyword. From a practical point of view, changeling allowed me to give support to the tribal cards of Khaliz-Dorahn without forcing me to include races that don't appear in Medranos, such as Humans, Zombies and Goblins. As a new take, this time around some changelings will actually have abilities that makes their keyword matter, rather than depend on other cards' tribal bonuses (See Memekri Disruptor above).

REAP

Gorgons in Gyradros are constantly petrifying victims that dare traverse their lands. The stony corpses of victims still hold potential the gorgons are ready to exploit, giving way to the Reap mechanic (Reap - X, Exile two cards from your graveyard: [effect])

And now for the new ones. As was promised before, Medranos presents a new type of counter. Since Medranos is all about growth and development, what better than...

GROWTH COUNTERS

Growth counters are counters that are exclusive to players. At any time you could cast a sorcery, you may pay two growth counters to put a +1/+1 counter on a creature. Most growth counter cards will already give you two to begin with, and those who give you one will generally have a repeatable effect to avoid it being parasitic.

After comments of this mechanic, now you get to spend your growth counters either to create a Saproling or to untap a basic land.

But what if you end up with an odd number of growth counters and ou don't have that many cards that give you new ones? Well, the following returning mechanic shall help you with that!

PROLIFERATE

Proliferate makes its return from the Scars of Mirrodin block to help spread the growth even more! From a practical point of view, it helps interact not only with effects inside the block but also with the Vanishing and Infect cards from Khaliz-Dorahn, which is the main reason why I chose this block to be its follower. This time around white also gets to participate on the proliferating fun!

DEVOUR

But not everything in Medranos is growth now that the Lahessi have appeared, they have begun consuming everything in their wake, and growing stronger from doing so. In this set, each and every creature with Devour will be a Lahessi, and it will appear in all five colors (although Blue mana symbol and White mana symbol will get fewer than Jund colors).

ADAPTIVE

Finally, we have the last mechanic: Adaptive. Medranian creatures tend to grow not only through their own nature, but by coexisting with bigger entities and empowering themselves from it. Since every being is connected by a symbiotic pulse, smaller creatures get to rise when bigger ones are around them. Adaptive (This creature enters the battlefield with an additional +1/+1 counter on it if an opponent controls a creature with greater power.)

And that's all the mechanics of Evolution of the Lahessi. I hope you like them and if you have any thoughts or opinions on them just let me know.

Things to expect wrote:
Here's a list of things you can expect from this set, but beware, one of them is fake! Let's see if you can find it:
1- Pirates, Minotaurs and Vampires in all five colors (changelings)
2- First seen in Antiquities, last seen in Oath of the Gatewatch
3- A Legendary Instant
4- A reanimator spell that will make Dread Return look like a bad card
5- A card with CMC over 20
6- Last time it cost 14, now it costs 10
7- A new type of counter (growth counters)
8- A kill spell that you can use as many times as you want as long as you have the mana

Mon, 2017-06-12 07:11
fluffyDeathbringer
Moderator
fluffyDeathbringer's picture

Mistress of the Moors: Magic now uses "[Type]s" instead of "[Type] creatures" wording, so it'd be Moorlings. Also, I might've missed something, but what exactly is a Moorling?

I like the mechanics and the cards, though.

Remind yourself that overconfidence is a slow and insidious killer.

Avatar by rickenfe13. goats are gay

Wed, 2017-06-14 03:15
Guitarweeps
Head Administrator
Guitarweeps's picture

Love that gorgon!

Growth seems really odd as it is basically just half a +1/+1. Seems like it would be better to just rebalance everything to do +1/+1. OR give it another out like adding a mana or make a 1/1 Saproling or something.

While proliferate was hard to make useful sometimes I have always loved it.

Devour is cool and works with proliferate but...

Adaptive also is a counter based mechanic. At this point I am thinking that it is a bit too much. Of course we don't have the whole file yet but it seems like it might be to counter driven. Even the "other" counter just becomes +1/+1 counters so it doesn't really bring enough depth overall. Scars had charge counters, -1/-1 counters, and infect counters which all do completely different things and fill different roles. These are all +1/+1 counters or slower ones.

If I may, if I was looking at developing this set based only on the mechanics you have shown so far I think I would keep adaptive which is cool and growth counters which I would look at adjusting (reap is fine). For growth just making it slow +1/+1 isn't really exciting especially when other mechanics in the set do +1/+1 counters. I would look at having at least two uses, maybe three (although that is a lot of reminder text). Here would be a few ideas.

- Add mana of any color
- Make a 1/1 Saproling token
- Make a 0/1 plant token
- Make a 0/2 plant mana dork
- Make a land token or fetch for a basic

Alternatively you could leave it as is and just have other cards allow you to spend growth counters on other growth like effects.

Then I would drop devour and just make all the Lahessi, "devour" creatures on ETB (or in play) and you get growth counters from it. This would leave you with four mechanics so you could just call it a day or add another one. If you did the latter then it should probably be a non-counter related one unless MAYBE you have it be a completely different counter type.

Just my two cents. Overall though these all look really cool and I am excited to see the rest.

Check out my updated set hub.

Wed, 2017-06-14 18:49
marioware2
Moderator
marioware2's picture

I also don't particularly care for Growth counters as-is. I would suggest making them give +1/+1 until EoT instead of the counters, but there are a lot of options out there and I'm sure you'll settle on whichever one you think is best Big smile

Wed, 2017-06-14 23:32
jacqui-pup
Featured Set Editor - Best Set of 2015 - Community Award
jacqui-pup's picture

Adaptive is a cruddy mechanic. I like it as a catch-up mechanic but it runs counter to the point of a set where you're supposed to be making big dudes? Especially since proliferate is here too, having it sometimes enter the battlefield with a +1/+1 counter on it is super swingy. And it sucks on big dudes too.

Also be real here, Strength in Synergy isn't getting used as a combat trick, you're using it on your opponent's biggest dude at end step to get a crap ton of +1/+1 counters.

I don't know, everything in the set is "cohesive" (except reap which I guess works with devour except it doesn't really work with tokens) but feels like it's going to play awful. Just my .02c

[center]"It's exciting to create something that demonstrates how clever you are, that you pushed in a direction that players didn't anticipate. The problem is that the point of game design isn't to be clever, it's to create a great game." --Mark Rosewater

Fri, 2017-06-16 04:15
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

@fluffy:

Quote:
Moorlings: Created by the gorgons as servants by extracting the remaining vitality of petrified victims and fusing it into a body made from elements of the marsh.

Moorling is a new creature subtype that will be token-exclusive.

@everyone: thanks a lot for adressing the mechanics. Yes, I was concerned about growth counters being just another form of +1/+1 counters, so thanks to Guitarweeps' suggestion I thought of this:

You may pay two growth counters at any time you could cast a sorcery to create a 1/1 green Saproling creature token or untap target basic land.

Any thoughts on that?

@jacqui: I'll address your points tomorrow when I get some rest.

On Adaptive: I don't believe this to be cruddy. Sure, the difference between getting or not the counter can be substantial, but the ones who suffer the most from it are 1-attack creatures so you have a higher chance of triggering adaptive since in limited your opponents are bound to have creatures with greater power. I don't see why it sucking on big dudes is a deal, I'll just cap it at 2-3, the same way I capped encourage to only 3+ attack creatures. Sure, I agree that an ability that depends on your opponent can be dangerous, but I don't believe this particular one will be troublesome in limited.

On Strength in Synergy: true story, I was kind of aiming to something like that but since I changed the mechanic the card you saw is no more and I will from now on deny it ever existed!

On set cohesiveness: as for Reap, it has enough support on the set to be useful. Blue will have more of a self-mill approach while black has devour, and the colors that will actually want to devour tokens won't have reap, so the mechanic has enough balance to work. I agree maybe cohesiveness is not the same as effectiveness at the time of playing, so I'll just have to wait until I can playtest the set with people to see if this was a good or bad idea. Thanks for this particular comment.

Sun, 2017-07-30 04:08
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

Spoiler:
CHAPTER III: THE STRANGER

To the south of the Eternal Fronds, in the middle of Lateria, a creature materialized in Medranos. It was a tall being, his ashen grey skin and pale eyes giving away its race: vampire. His name was Sal-Thamek, and he was in the middle of a quest, and the second he stepped into Medranos he was sure it had come to an end.

“This power…” he whispered in a deep, raspy voice “I haven’t felt anything like this ever since I left Okthuros…”

He smiled out of the corner of his mouth. Maybe he wouldn’t need to return home after all; maybe all he needed was right here. If he could harvest the power he was feeling pulsing throughout the land, he would regain what he had lost, and he would rise once more to his true potential!

To his left and right all he could see was an extensive pasture, treaded by all sorts of animals he’d never seen before. Even Okthuros didn’t present as much variety as this place, and Okturos wasn’t even real! Whatever creatures roamed this plane, he’d be able to produce quite an army from them.

He raised his hand and pressed it against the ground.

“I command the dead of this land to rise. Wake from your slumber and bow to my will! It’s time for you to conquer this world in my name!”

He smiled as his energy started flowing from him to the ground. Soon enough he’d have an army to take over Medranos, or so he thought…

For some weird reason, nothing was happening. He stared at his arm, which had stopped glowing from the energy he’d provided the dead to rise.

“Impossible” he said.

He’d used that spell countless times. He’d used it to conquer many planes, but they ended up not being what he was looking for, and now he’d finally found it, his magic didn’t work? Could it be possible? What could stop him from animating the dead?

“Maybe this is a plane without death!” he said to himself incredulously “No, impossible! No world is without death!”

As a bird flew high atop him, he tested his theory by throwing a jolt of light its direction. The second it hit its target the bird disintegrated into nothing and he could feel himself replenish part of his strength by absorbing its vitality. But if death was possible here, what was keeping him from obtaining his army?

He thought maybe not enough beings had died in this particular location, but that was impossible. He could see many different creatures, it was an abundant land. He had no way of knowing Lateria was actually considered a desert by Medranians, since it wasn’t as overpopulated as the rest of the world and growth didn’t develop as quick. That was not, however, the reason he was failing.

As rage began filling him, he raised both arms and pressed both hands against the grassy soil, draining as much energy as he could into the spell. He’d use as much energy as he could to obtain what he wanted, for whatever he lost he would regain once this powerful plane was his.

But after a short while of infusing his vitality, something snapped inside the ground. The same powerful pulse he wanted to harvest resisted his might and turned against him, hurling him far away and making him fall flat on his back. What was going on here?

“A world without undeath!” he spoke in sudden realization. Death was present everywhere, but in some places there was no way to reverse it, and this was one of those places! If he couldn’t raise the dead, then he had no power here…

But he couldn’t just leave, not after finding such a rich plane. He could still remember the one he’d left behind.

It had been years ago, back in Okthuros. He couldn’t exactly recall how, but he’d found out the true nature of his homeworld. At first he used his knowledge to become a Weaver and reshape reality to his will. But soon he began despising the plane he’d been born in. Why should he spend the rest of his life trapped in a lie? What if he escaped the illusion and saw what reality felt like?

After carefully studying the nature of the Weave he thought of the perfect solution: suicide! If he died in Okthuros he would be able to escape its trap. He had no way of knowing that death on the Weave meant death in real life, and when he finally plotted his own demise he actually put his life in peril. Had his spark not ignited at that moment he’d have perished there. But it did, and he ascended.

For a brief moment, as he contemplated the Eternities he felt freed from the lie he’d been submitted his entire existence. He couldn’t feel more glorious. But then it happened…

He arrived at a new plane, a place with species and people he’d never known before. He had already begun planning his conquest when he realized a fatal flaw: most of his power was gone! He’d been so desperate to escape Okthuros he didn’t realize that most of his power resided in the Weave, and now that it was gone, he couldn’t use most of his threats to take over this world. He was weak!

Desperately, he’d travelled once more to the Eternities and tried to search for his home, but he couldn’t find it. He continued his search for years, travelling different planes in search of the one world that could give him what he wanted. His ability to drain the vitality out of others was still intact, and he used it to increase his capacities, but it was definitely not the same, and all it did was buy him some more lifespan.
But it didn’t matter now. Even if he never came upon Okthuros again Medranos would restore his long lost power. It was a matter of time. He vowed he’d find a way to harvest this life pulse and become the nightmare he once was.

He stood up and shook the dust off his coat. As some animals began approaching him to investigate the new creature, he extended both arms and gave them a deranged smile as beams of white light shot at them and started draining their lives, rejuvenating the planeswalker as it happened.

Medranos once more resisted to this aberration upon nature, but Sal-Thamek was expecting it this time, and used the energy he’d absorbed to counter the pulse, cracking the earth at his feet and creating a small crater, devoid of all life, in the middle of Lateria.

“Yes, if I cannot use the dead to harvest this plane, then I have no choice but to use the living” he said as he chuckled.

This would be the hardest task he’d faced since leaving Okthuros, but the reward would definitely pay off, and he was willing to rise to the challenge.

* * * * *

Carved inside a gigantic tree that stood mere meters away from the Alluring Ancient was Ankryss’ home. Inside, the biggest room was the place he used as his laboratory, where he dissected all species he was sent to examine and took note on all things Medranos. Everyone knew he’d been busy ever since he received that package from Ellanya, and even though he could only be in his laboratory, if anybody walked into it they would not see him there.

But if anybody who knew him as well as Orriana entered, they’d know to immediately look up at the ceiling, since he used to skitter all over it when he was deep in thought.

The nantuko was indeed hanging upside down on the roof of said room, scratching his head vigorously and grabbing his staff compulsively, trying to get answers from Medranos itself yet not getting any.

“This is just impossible” he kept whispering to himself over and over, as if repeating that sentence enough times would unlock the final piece of the puzzle or alter the nature of his situation.

He was a biologist, and probably the best in all Medranian history (an objective fact that was reflected in the fact the Alluring Ancient had yielded an entire branch for him), yet he couldn’t process the data of the creature he’d just analyzed.

Two days ago Orriana and the others had headed to Gyradros to confront the gorgons, and he’d started studying this brand new specimen. For two entire days he’d devoted to the dissection of this creature and he was just as ignorant as he’d been from the start.

Its anatomy was unique. It seemed like its only purpose was to destroy and consume, since its entire body seemed like a killing machine. He’d spent hours describing with uncanny detail all the intriguing parts of this creature, and even though he now knew all there was to know about its biological components, there was just one question left: what exactly was this?

If it were native to Medranos he would’ve felt it in his staff, but the letters he’d been receiving lately suggested these creatures had been found in more than one place, and no walker could spread creatures like this so quickly throughout Medranos (or at least he hoped so).

So basically his situation could be summarized in: he could feel every living creature in Medranos from the second its species was born as long as it was born in the plane, yet these new monsters that seemed to be native to this world had completely eluded him as a consequence of eluding the Alluring Ancient, which was a living blueprint of all Medranos!

He dropped from the ceiling and landed on a leafy couch, ready to take a break. He’d rest for a few seconds, then he’d restart his research. He could reread his notes, he could even read some of the biology papers he himself had written to try and compare its anatomy to that of another creature, even though this didn’t even seem to come close to anything real…

Real? Real!

“Real!” he screamed suddenly standing up “This doesn’t seem real because I never expected it to be real!”

He desperately went to his personal library, grabbing a book he’d never thought he’d actually use in his life: Myths of Medranos. In it, creatures that had been claimed to exist but never proven were carefully detailed, in case they ever were proven to be true. Some had more colorful descriptions, while other were vague and incongruent, making them less believable.

He’d kept that tome since, after harmonizing with the Ancient, he’d actually found some of those creatures to be real, their mythic status given just by the fact they hid in places nobody had ever explored.
As he frantically turned the pages all he could hope for was that he was wrong, that he’d just imagined seeing this creature in this book and that the description would not match his specimen.

But when he reached the letter “L” he gasped in sheer terror. There it was, one of the best described creatures in the manual, and possibly the scariest. If this was true, then he had to start a more extensive research, one that yielded not only the anatomy of the creature, but also its weaknesses, for if what they were facing was real, all of Medranos was in grave danger.

He exited the tree that was his house and quickly went in search of two fellow biologist colleagues.

“I need your help with something of uttermost importance!” he said “I cannot explain right now, so I shall tell you about it on the road. I have already packed all we’ll need.”

“On the road?” asked one of the nantuko “Where are we going?”

“To the Stormy Peaks of Ellanya” replied Ankryss grimly “I need to go to the place where it began and see if it can be ended!”

Fri, 2017-06-16 12:03
fluffyDeathbringer
Moderator
fluffyDeathbringer's picture

Sal-Thamek's first ability needs a period.

Remind yourself that overconfidence is a slow and insidious killer.

Avatar by rickenfe13. goats are gay

Fri, 2017-06-16 16:11
marioware2
Moderator
marioware2's picture

- Good lord, okay, so I thought Terrenal Reprisal said "whenever a creature you control", and I was about to yell at you. But this seems fine, if unexciting.
- I think Sal-Thamek's ult could cost less, especially since it's not really that devastating and he doesn't even have a true plus ability. Maybe -7?
- Yo Dissected Specimen is bad. Actually, I just did some research and it's not as bad as I thought, but I still think it could cost 2 mana symbolBlack mana symbol without ruining the game.
- Druidic Influence is fun, but I think should cost 1 mana symbol more, based on cards like Equestrian Skill.
- Aknryss actually reads like a rare and not a mythic. I get if you have her up there for story reasons, but this is around the same power level as Regal Caracal and I think it should be rarified as such.

Overall I like these, but I don't love them. There's not a ton of neat flavor going on and it seems a bit straightforward - not that there's anything wrong with that, per se, it just doesn't really get me going.

Mon, 2017-06-26 18:08
Asthanius
Asthanius's picture

Wait a minute...Does "First seen in Antiquities, last seen in Oath of the Gatewatch" refer to Strip Mine? Strip Mine was an Expedition in Oath, and was first printed in Antiquities. I sincerely hope this set doesn't include Strip Mine.

Mon, 2017-06-26 18:30
Cajun
Cajun's picture

More likely a reference to strip mining but pls Strip Mine.

Cajun's Explorations
Planeswalker Template Overhaul
fluffyDeathbringer wrote:
I dunno, Cajun has a habit of doing Dubiously Working new rules stuff

Mon, 2017-07-24 02:10
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

Spoiler:
CHAPTER IV: THE JOURNEY

Orriana had woken up an hour before the group had agreed to gather. After a long debate, the party that would go into Gyradros and confront the gorgons had been settled, and the planeswalker had been chosen to be a part of it. After asking Elegos if Garruk could join, he agreed, so her friend would also be fighting at her side. The problem was that, since she was going to be a part of the group after Ankryss insisted, the current Warden of Medranos decided that Arion and Northia (the other two candidates to the title) should join them.

Arion wasn’t all that bad. He was a strong built, bearded elf, shorter than Orriana yet not a short person. His hair was thick and black which gave him a tough appearance, even though he was one of the gentlest souls the woman had ever seen. His talent was pretty unique, and was what Elegos had seen in him to choose him as candidate: Arion could bring creatures back to life.

Even though undeath was completely impossible in Medranos, since the lifepulse abhorred unnatural life, Arion could slightly bypass that. By drawing the essence of a dead creature, he could infuse the memories and will of said creature and shape it into an elemental to give it one last day of life. After a day passed the temporary body vanished and that was it, but he’d really helped others by letting them die with no regrets.

But the one that really grinded Orriana’s gears was Northia. Northia was Elegos’ daughter and, even though her father had not been the one to postulate her as candidate for the title, the planeswalker suspected some form of nepotism involved. Yes, she knew Elegos well, and she knew he’d always be unbiased in every choice he made, but Northia kept repeating how the title would be hers, how she already knew a Warden’s duty since she’d been raised by one, and that always annoyed Orriana.

Northia was about the same height as her (they were tied in that respect), she was also thinner (point for Northia) but her hair was blonde, the more common hair color amongst Derrivans, and not nearly as beautiful and silky as the planeswalker’s red hair (point for Orriana).

But the real issue lied in their origins. While Arion was Earthenlore, both Orriana and Northia were Coeros, and ever since they were young girls they’d competed and compared each other, and the latter tended to win most of the times, which made her believe she had the right to boast at all times (not like Orriana wouldn’t if she were the better hunter).

They exchanged a glare as the planeswalker was seeing who else formed part of the group: Elegos (of course), Arion and Northia, three nantuko she didn’t know (Ankryss was still busy dissecting his specimen), and three merfolk, one of them a beautiful girl that seemed to be of the highest rank.

It wasn’t her pale blue skin or the shape of her legs that particularly struck Orriana (Medranian merfolk could grow legs on land and would regain their tails when they got back to water) but her hair. It was adorned with a coral crown of iridescent hues that brought out all of her beauty, but it didn’t seem ornamental, it seemed to be a part of her. She knew only one family of merfolk had that capability: those of the lineage of Yrathul, the leader of Krallyna.

“Greetings, my name is Orriana Galerider” she said with a warm smile as she extended her hand “I couldn’t help but notice your hair, you’re related to Yrathul, are you not?”

“I am, he is my uncle” she replied returning the smile and shaking her hand. Her grip was firm, but nowhere near being strong, this wasn’t a woman whose strength came physically, so the planeswalker guessed she must be a witch.

“She was chosen by Yrathul himself to join us. She has quite the talent: she’s an illusionist, and a pretty excellent one. She has devised a spell that can temporarily protect us from the gorgons’ gaze” explained Elegos with a tone of pride.

Once everyone finished introducing themselves their journey began.

Orriana had never traversed all of the Eternal Fronds, since she stuck mostly to the Derrivan side. She’d never gone to Krallyna (she didn’t particularly like large masses of water) nor Gyradros (same issue, only the water was stagnant and gorgons lived there, which only increased her contempt) so even though she thought she knew Medranos, what she saw on the trip completely dazed her.

From the tallest and most wondrous trees that sheltered her elven brothers to the highest peaks she’d ever traversed, the Eternal Fronds indeed had a place for everyone in Medranos, and the more they went to the north, the more the environment changed. She’d even seen a gigantic lake populated by merfok, faeries, and all sort of different and colorful fish that swam all around gracefully. Seeing her partners take a rest and swim around, she decided to follow their steps and join them in the water, which she didn’t completely enjoy but it wasn’t as bad as she’d imagined: she was simply more of a tree-person.

But even in the eternal fronds not all was perfect… for after a few more days, after climbing a hill, they saw a small marshland that got lost into the trees and eventually ended in the bane of Medranos: Gyradros, the domain of the gorgons.


“We’ll set camp here for the night” declared Elegos “Tomorrow is a long day and I expect to reach Anastra before the sun sets. Try to get as much rest as you can…”

As the group fell asleep one by one, the Medranian moon (bigger than most world's moon) exerted its influence to help them rest, as the creatures of the night started populating Medranos in a symphony of colors and figures.

* * * * *

The next morning greeted everybody with another bright beautiful sun, which woke them up around the time Elegos had calculated, and soon everyone was traversing the marshland that would lead them to Gyradros.
The mood was silent and tense, in contrast with the joyful and adventurous atmosphere the party had shared the last few days. Today they were in hostile territory. Everyone had to stay on edge at every second if the wanted to end this journey with their lives intact, so there was no room for error or distractions.

The first few hours went by without incidents. Whether the gorgons were absent or hiding none could tell, but soon they got their answer.

A rustle in the nearby bushes made everyone immediately take battle positions. The warriors drew out their swords, the archers prepared their arrows, the druids readied their staves, Garruk held his ax up high and Endelya’s hands began to glow faintly. When the underbrush opened, a small and unthreatening creature emerged from them.

It was no bigger than Orriana’s foot. Even though its teeth seemed sharp and its eyes appeared to stare at everyone with a predatory stare, no one really thought much of it, and after it emitted a faint roar, it skittered away.

“Any idea of what that was?” asked Elegos to the nantuko.

“No,” replied one of them “I’ve never seen a creature like that in my-”

But his sentence was cut short when a new threat emerged from nowhere. This time around it was a gorgon.

“Careful!” screamed Elegos closing his eyes and readying his sword.

The hisses and splashes of the gorgon gave away its position, and soon she was dealt with, but there was no reason to celebrate, this only meant the real threat had only just begun.

They hastened their pace, although the drowned territory made it difficult to advance. As the elves readied their ears to carefully pick anything that sounded odd, the druids were using their own pieces of the Alluring Ancient to connect to the plane and feel any approaching organism.

After a few more meters into the dense forestry and a few moments of tension that went away as quickly as they’d appeared, the group finally made it to Gyradros.

The land of the gorgons was a stagnant mass of water, polluted by mud and rotting trees. The fronds were not that abundant as elsewhere in Medranos, but they were enough to conceal gorgons all throughout the place. In the far distance, casting a long shadow as the sun shone from behind it, stood Anastra, a large, glimmering palace made entirely with petrified flesh (a thought that disgusted everyone in the group).

As they treaded through the muck, they observed the creatures that roamed the reeking land. Most of them were mere beasts that scavenged for whatever carrion remained, but others were the ones that hurt Medranians the most: moorlings…

It’d been thirty-five years since Malextros had arrived at Medranos and created the gorgons, and Elegos had participated in the group that drove the planeswalker out, but his children remained and, willing to imitate their master, they created their own form of life.

The moorlings were creatures that could barely be considered alive. Their bodies were disembodied flesh stuck together with mud and hopeful wishing. They slugged all through Gyradros idiotically, and were only animated with the life from others.

After experimenting with petrified bodies, the Unfathomable had discovered that the soul of her victims would continue to live on until it was its time to die, even if its body was motionless. She used this knowledge to reap the remaining vitality out of the bodies and infuse it into these puppets, thus creating the moorlings. Undeath was impossible in Medranos, but these atrocities toed the line. They were technically alive, but barely…

As a way to add insult to injury, the moorlings were bound to their creator, so whatever they sensed would be transmitted to whoever had made the aberration. As the group saw more and more of these monsters gathering around them, they knew it wouldn’t be long before their mistresses came to repel the intruders.

“The battle is close, are you ready?” asked Orriana to Garruk in a whisper.

“Ready as can be” replied the man grabbing a firm hold of his ax.

A faint hiss, a slight rustle, a twig crushed underfoot, all sounds that gave away the ambush a split second before it began. The group closed their eyes and prepared their weapons as an army of gorgons jumped from the shadows and assaulted them.

Orriana couldn’t see what happened to the others, since in that very moment all she could care about was her own survival. Her elvish ears were her best weapon against the gorgons, since she could almost pinpoint their location by listening to the sounds they made as they attacked. She even felt like all of her senses were particularly perceptive, as though enhanced, and she realized that must be the work of Endelya and her magic.

She heard a loud splash; someone was approaching through the muck. Upon listening more carefully she could detect the sound of water dripping from… scales! Gorgon! She aimed her bow in the creature’s direction and shot three consecutive shots, the split second she needed to grab a new arrow and reload the only thing that separated them. She heard a screech and a submerged body and knew her victim was dead. She kept shooting arrows all around, pointing at wherever she could be sure a gorgon was approaching and hoping she wouldn’t hit any ally.

The elves of the party too relied on their hearing to strike their prey, while the nantuko used their gifts from the Ancient to sense their presence, and the merfolk used Endelya’s magic. Garruk, as a non-Medranian human, took a more dire approach, and waited until the gorgons got their hands on him to grab them violently and hurl them at his feet, where he could violently dispose of them.

As the last screeches faded and the last black blood splattered the party, they took a deep breath and waited for more gorgons to come.

“Shall we open our eyes again?” asked Garruk.

“We can’t afford it, we still don’t know whether or not there are gorgons lurking” replied Elegos “We’re only a few meters away from Anastra if I recall correctly. How much time do you think your shielding spell will last, Endelya?”

“I’m not sure, but no more than twenty minutes top” said the woman.

“We mustn’t deploy it until we’re inside the palace, then” said the Warden of Medranos “We shall proceed carefully and-“

“The coast is clear” interrupted Northia “I’ve opened my eyes and I see neither gorgons nor moorlings near us. If we make a run for it, we can reach Anastra before they send reinforcements.”

“Northia!” screamed Elegos opening his eyes and glaring at her “Do you know how stupid what you just did was?! You could’ve died!”

“But I didn’t, and I saved us our most powerful weapon against the gorgons. Someone had to be brave enough to take one for the team, and I decided I should be selfless enough to do it!” she retorted, staring at Orriana straight in the eye and giving her a slight, malicious wink.

“A Warden doesn’t do what he or she wants, a Warden evaluates what’s the best course of action endangering as little people as possible. This does not make you a better candidate, Northia. We’ll go to the castle, but we’ll have a talk later about this…”

As they ran for Anastra, Orriana mouthed a silent ten at her rival, who in turn smiled condescendingly and whispered thirteen, indicating she’d killed three more gorgons than her.
A few minutes later the group was finally at the gates of Anastra.

“This is it” said Elegos as he made sure everyone was ready “This is the vilest location in all of Medranos, nothing but evil and malice lies beyond this door. Everyone, stay close to each other and pay attention to the slightest of details. Endelya, the second I command you, deploy the spell.”

The merfolk witch nodded in agreement and Elegos pushed the gigantic “marble” door inward, which made a creaking sound. That had once been a living being, and now it was doomed to an existence as an inanimate servant of its killer…

The group entered the gigantic palace one by one, unknowing of what they’d find inside.

* * * * *

Inside the palace, resting in the farthest chamber sat the Unfathomable, as she spoke politely with her guest a gorgon slithered into the room, approaching her with a vast smile, avoiding to look at the visitor in the eye.

“Mistress” she said smiling, unsure whether because the news she bore were extremely pleasant or because of their guest’s mysterious talent “They’ve entered the castle, your plan has worked, our sisters are in position.”

“Excellent” replied the Unfathomable with a grin that revealed her fangs as her delight made her snaky hair slither “Soon we will have what we need. Are you ready to play your part, Suvia?”

The wiry, miserable-looking man by the Unfathomable's side didn't want to do what was coming -- to do harm to people he'd never even met before. But the gorgons had taken him in, knowing what he was, and given him their true acceptance - and so he nodded all the same, hands anxiously clasped and eyes shamefully downcast. In his heart, he steeled himself for the confrontation ahead. He wouldn't abandon the gorgons.

After all, he thought, monsters stay with monsters.

NOTE: Big thanks to fluffydeathbringer for allowing me to use Suvia in the story and for writing the last two paragraphs of chapter IV, as well as all of Suvia's future appearances.

@Ashtanius: you were so close, nice guess, but no, that item actually meant manlands, since Mishra's Factory was the first manland to ever be printed.

@everyone: That's one less thing off the list, only 4 real cards left, let's see if you can find which those four are and which one is the fake!

Things to expect wrote:
Here's a list of things you can expect from this set, but beware, one of them is fake! Let's see if you can find it:
1- Pirates, Minotaurs and Vampires in all five colors (Changelings)
2- First seen in Antiquities, last seen in Oath of the Gatewatch (Manlands)
3- A Legendary Instant
4- A reanimator spell that will make Dread Return look like a bad card
5- A card with CMC over 20
6- Last time it cost 14, now it costs 10
7- A new type of counter (Growth counters)
8- A kill spell that you can use as many times as you want as long as you have the mana

Thu, 2017-07-06 23:14
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

Since it's been a while since the last post and I'm still working on the story, I decided to take this moment to scrap off the list one of the cards that you guys were more concerned about:

Quote:
3- A Legendary Instant

And here it is:

I basically wanted to design a legendary Saproling, but a dilemma arose: should I design a creature with a subtype that has been left to tokens exclusively? I decided against it since one of the beauties of Saprolings is the fact that they exclusively appear in token form, and as a token lover I would never allow myself to go against that, so instead I decided to create a spell that created a legendary token, hence the "Legendary Instant" thing. Let me know what you guys think, please.

Thu, 2017-07-06 23:01
marioware2
Moderator
marioware2's picture

I think you should please update your account to enable 3rd party hosting, my dude A happy smile

Thu, 2017-07-06 23:44
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

Ugh, apparently that's a paid feature now A sad 'frowny'. I switched to imgur and managed to save some of the stuff but even with this new host I'm experiencing difficulties A sad 'frowny'

Fri, 2017-07-07 06:24
ThisisSakon
ThisisSakon's picture

Wow thats the most jpeg jpeg I've ever seen an official site jpeg. Photobucket does non-image hosting things? Pretty sure they just lost most of their base haha

Fri, 2017-07-07 08:13
HerziQuerzi
Creative Direction Award Best Mechanic Award
HerziQuerzi's picture

I guess now's as good a time as any to point out Arion doesn't work. X is meaningless by the time ETB triggers go on the stack.

Phasing
This phases in or out before you untap during each of your untap steps. While it's phased out, it's treated as though it doesn't exist.
Set Hub

Fri, 2017-07-07 09:59
Daij_Djan
Moderator Best Set of 2016
Daij_Djan's picture

I really like your "legendary instant" idea - cool take on a token creature type legendary.

ThisisSakon wrote:
Photobucket does non-image hosting things? Pretty sure they just lost most of their base haha

And they're really cheap as well! It only costs you 400$/year to link images again Winking smiley (sorry for off-topic)

As Photobucket wants me to pay 400$/year to link to my images, I'll relocate all renders.

Mon, 2017-07-24 02:10
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

Spoiler:
CHAPTER V: THE PALACE

The entryway was dark and humid, as though it were a cave and not a castle. As the group entered Anastra, their footsteps started echoing all throughout the place, clearly alerting those who lived in the palace of their presence. Subtlety would have to be left for later, this time they would go all in.

“Remember, Endelya, do not deploy the spell until I command” said Elegos sternly.

“Don’t worry, I’ll wait for your signal.”

The group advanced through a large hallway with all their senses on edge. The only light that guided them in the almost pitch black darkness was that of torches they’ve found on the walls and were now using to illuminate their path, although they were double-edged swords, since being able to see better also implied being seen more easily, and nobody would want to see or be seen by a gorgon since that meant an early demise.

The fact that they could neither see nor hear any enemies made them tenser and in no way was it relaxing, and as their paranoia of an ambush began to increase every single sound was a reason to fear the imminent attack. But they kept going, knowing these were just mind games meant for hair triggers and lousy shots.

It was Orriana who shot the first arrow. Before anyone else could notice, she heard a faint hiss heading their direction, and immediately released a projectile in its direction, barely missing Northia’s cheek as it flew through the tunnel. By the time someone got to react to what had just happened, a gorgon fell dead to the floor, her now empty eyes wide open as well as her mouth.

“Endelya, the spell, now!” ordered Elegos as they heard the sound of hundreds of creatures headed their way.

The merfolk witch did as told and deployed her refractor spell. As her hands shone with a blinding blue aura, the group seemed to be immediately enveloped in a gigantic transparent bubble that appeared to serve no purpose, yet it was the most powerful weapon they had against the gorgons. The refractor spell did nothing to those who were within its bounds, but those who were outside of the illusory barrier would have their sight distorted. Nothing was where it appeared to be, which not only allowed for missed shots and strikes but also prevented any gorgon from staring at their prey straight in the eye. If there was no direct visual contact, petrification would not occur!

As the gorgons came from all directions like a deranged swarm, the group was ready to confront them. On the vanguard was Garruk, his axe violently swinging left and right, cutting through gorgon after gorgon without rest. Elegos’ strategy was more direct, since he was specialized in close combat. As his enemies threw themselves on top of him only to realize their target wasn’t really where they believed him to be, the tall, slender elf didn’t waste a second and jumped over them, his shortsword wielded expertly before descending on top of his enemy and decapitating her. Arion had called the elemental forces of Medranos to provide him with an ethereal army that charged forward with unmatched ferocity. Northia and Orriana were back-to-back shooting arrows in opposite directions (neither of them was particularly content with the idea, but there was no other choice), their arrows expertly slaying their targets with only a few misses. The nantuko were not prone to violence, instead using their powers to sprout vines all over the battlefield to immobilize their enemies and ensure the other members of the group had an easier fight ahead of them. And of course, the merfolk were also doing their part. The two soldiers had long, sharp tridents and shields made out of seashells, to ensure their close combat would go swimmingly, but Endelya was an expert in magic, and she demonstrated it right then and there.

Her hands moved so fast nobody could keep track of them. Even though she had merely seconds to react, she turned around swiftly, shooting blue jets of light that stroke the gorgons in their chests and sent them flying against the walls and shackled them there, she also generated three illusory copies of herself, sending them to fight the gorgons who, in their confusion, didn’t realize they were fighting a war.

The refractor spell was giving them a huge advantage, and the entire group would soon be able to defeat their enemies with no casualties… or so they thought.

Their foes were smarter than they’d thought, and soon realized something was impeding them from using their most lethal weapons. Soon they stopped trusting their eyes and began focusing their other senses (something cruelly ironical) and, even though those were also being fooled, the spell focused mainly on their sight.

As Elegos dropped over yet another gorgon he did not expect her to quickly turn around and wrap her slithery tail around him, constricting him until he was immobilized. Before anyone could react, he was dragged into the darkness, away from the group and from all the protection it brought him.

“Father!” screamed Northia desperately and, abandoning any form of reason and any self-preservation instinct, she headed straight towards the hallway where he was taken. She didn’t even see the gorgon that crept from a niche above her and grabbed her, pulling her upward and taking her far away until her screams were muffled.

“Nobody move!” ordered Orriana seeing the group might fall apart “As long as we stick together they cannot defeat us!”

Everybody knew she was right, they’d leave mourning for later, and kept on fighting.

Arrows, swords, spells and blood flew all around the room. Realizing that as long as the refractor spell was up they wouldn’t be able to win, all the gorgons fled, or at least attempted to.

Taking a risk, Garruk ran a few steps and grabbed two by their tails with his left hand, pulling them up with ease and decapitating both at the same time with a swift swing from his ax.

The room went quiet once more, and then the tears began falling.

“We lost them…” whispered Orriana “Elegos and Northia are gone.”

Yes, she hated Northia, but death at the hands of the gorgons was not something she’d wish upon her worst enemy (which happened to be Elegos’ daughter).

“Stand up, all of you!” commanded Orriana “That’s enough mourning for now. If we don’t proceed and complete the mission then their deaths will have been in vain. Arion, you and I are in charge now, what do you say?”

“No, not you and I. I believe it’ll be better if you give the orders, at least for now. You’re the hunter, after all, you know more about this. I will still give it my all, in honor of Elegos.”

She nodded gratefully and reorganized the group: Garruk on the vanguard escorted by the nantuko, she’d be behind him, her bow ready. Arion and the merfolk escorts would cover the back, leaving Endelya in the middle, since she was their best ally. They were ready to keep moving when something odd happened.

“Do you hear that?” asked Garruk.

“It sounds like somethings coming” said Orriana.

“More gorgons?” said Arion.

“No, these sound like footsteps, besides…” replied Endelya.

Besides, something odd was going on. Even though everyone was expecting an ambush, their tension seemed to be fading rather than building. Whatever was coming their way wasn’t a gorgon, and it had powers none of them believed to have seen.

For a moment, Suvia simply walked down the empty stone corridors, savouring the silence as he moved further and further away from the Unfathomable’s throne room. Silence meant there was no one nearby, that he was temporarily free from taking in the negative feelings of everyone around him. In that silence, he almost forgot what he was and what he was going to do; and for a moment, all was right.


That contentment was soon broken by the psychic ghost-pangs of dying gorgons in the distance, the taste of their last moments of fear both disgusting and decadently sweet on the vampire’s tongue. He froze in place as the feelings flashed in him, making him glimpse, for an instant, what it was like to die. Suvia spent a few moments impotently trembling in place, unable to continue onward to a place where he knew there would only be more pain – for the gorgons, for the people he was sent to apprehend, and thus, inevitably, for him. But he knew he couldn’t turn back, either, as he forced his legs to move again; the misery of deserting the gorgons who’d given him such care was even more of an impediment.

And, of course, there was the hunger. The constant hunger, so constant that it had awoken during mere minutes of not being around anyone else. The hunger for all the painful and unpleasant things those around him felt – the hunger that made him a blight on the world. As Suvia came closer, the pangs suddenly stopped – but the ambient despair of the gorgons was still there, sating the hunger and making his own veins that much more colder, along with a diverse plate of tensions that Suvia felt in his own skin in turn as he drained them from the air. He could see the sources in the distance now, slowly lowering their raised guards. It must’ve been the people he was sent to apprehend.

It dawned on Suvia as he approached Orriana’s cadre that he had absolutely no idea how to apprehend people.

Luckily for him, the assembled throng seemed to be succumbing to his draining aura well enough – they were no longer radiating unease – except for one of them, a merfolk – and the anxiety Suvia’d eaten from them was already fading from his heart, leaving only his own. Some of the party were even already wearing the usual placid smiles that those around him couldn’t help but exhibit. Maybe he could just... ask them to come along, and they’d come? No need for any more pain, right? Maybe this could all go easily.

“Ho there!” hollered the one with pointy ears and shiny armour, waving a relaxed wave at Suvia. “You gave us quite a fright, stranger – didn’t expect anyone else here.” The pointy-eared man punctuated his words with a hearty chuckle, which Suvia knew wouldn’t be there for long. Not for real. He’d have to just get all of this over with, so he wouldn’t have to force any of them into happiness for much longer.

“Hello,” began Suvia, stopping in front of the armored one and suppressing, as he often did, the urge to whine out an apology for intruding on the very minds of those around him. “I... um... could you please come with me, for a moment?” Throughout stammering out the request, Suvia tried his best to ignore the merfolk that was still emitting tension just so he’d be able to focus...

...a mistake he paid for by getting a jet of conjured water to the side of the head, courtesy of that very merfolk. Even with the enhanced toughness of his vampiric body, the blow took him off-balance and made him spend the next few seconds trying not to fall down.

“Snap out of it!” barked the merfolk at the rest of the crew. “That thing’s doing something to us!” Waves of strong rage were undulating off her, swallowed helplessly by Suvia’s body – and as they were, all his guilt and and anxiety and conflict were quite rapidly drowned out by sheer anger.

Suvia lunged at the merfolk midsentence, inelegantly dragging her down to the ground with him and punching at her head again and again. Where blows missed, they broke chunks of stone off the castle floor; and where they hit, they mixed the rich flavor of anger in the air with horrible pain.

“Just go! That way!” shrieked Suvia at the rest as he wrestled with the merfolk, hastily pointing a finger at the path where the gorgon ambush force was waiting as per the Unfathomable’s plan Through the red haze, he could feel a momentary surge of anger and confusion from them; and, consumed in frustration that he was, he just wanted this to be over.

Amidst his scuffle with the merfolk, he reached into himself and grasped with his mind the air around him, deliberately gobbling up all of the negative emotion from around him; after a moment of silence, the rest of the merfolk’s team shrugged and sauntered off into the distance.

Suvia could feel the merfolk trying to resist his innate talent, his innate curse. With a few jets of water he was thrown off guard and she took the moment to stand and push him back with a wave of energy. He could feel her anger, he just could not feed off of it. She charged towards him but she was already too weak from her previous beating, and subduing her once more and continuing her ordeal was not a difficult task.

It took a few moments of beating the merfolk some more before Suvia realized she’d stopped resisting a while ago. She was unconscious, still breathing but bleeding slightly from her nose. With that, her anger and the pain were gone; all that remained was a freezing mortification that was all Suvia’s own. For a moment, he just sat there atop her, staring at what he’d done, too horrified with himself to even scream.

Eventually, Suvia got up almost robotically and gingerly picked up the merfolk, taking care not to disturb her too much. The Unfathomable still needed her. He wouldn’t be a burden to the Unfathomable.

As Suvia walked through a silent corridor again, he wished he were dead.

CHAPTER VI: THE UNFATHOMABLE

It had taken them a few minutes to actually realize what had happened, and when the truth struck them nobody could believe the situation they’d just experienced. Had they seriously obeyed a creature that attacked their friend and did as told without even hesitating?

“We have to go back and rescue Endelya!” demanded one of the merfolk.

“We can’t” retorted Orriana “The refractor spell will dispel any second now and, as soon as it does, we’ll be doomed. We have to kill the Unfathomable before it does or all of this will have been in vain!”

She kept running down the path the creature had oh so generously pointed at them, and hoped the rest would follow without further words. They did, and soon they arrived at a gigantic doorway.

It was the most disgusting thing any of them (except maybe Garruk) had ever seen. An enormous door that had nothing but screaming faces reflecting the pain of being killed stared at them. Countless of victims doomed to an eternity with the same fear they’d felt as they died guarded the Unfathomable’s throne room, and it only served to fuel Orriana’s rage.

“I will make sure this creature and all her spawns are forever wiped from the face of Medranos!” she swore.

“Don’t let your hatred drive you, Orriana” said Arion placing his hand on her shoulder to calm her down “You need a clear head to defeat the oldest of Malextros’ daughters.”

He was right (as always), and she nodded with a deep sigh, letting her anger slightly wash away, but keeping it locked nearby so she could use it as fuel when the time came. She asked Garruk for his help and both of them pushed the doors wide open, entering the room and immediately assuming an attack formation. This was it, all or nothing.

“Greetings, I have been expecting you…” said clearly a deep, ominous voice that echoed all throughout the room. Its source was clear: there was a single gorgon sitting in the shadows in front of them.

The Unfathomable was a large creature, bigger than any gorgon they’d ever faced. She was almost as twice as Garruk when she stood up, but even sitting down she reached Orriana’s height. Her body was covered in scales that were the darkest shade of green, and it ended in a long, thick tail that seemed to have a life of its own as it squirmed on the floor. They thought her head to be hidden by the shadows, until they realized the shadows seemed to be born from her face! Her eyes were wide shut, that much they could tell. The skin seemed ashen grey and her nose slim. Her mouth was greeting them with a wide mouth, revealing her pale fangs.

Her hair was made of serpents (this was a rare trait, and they’d only seen it in higher ranked gorgons before) that slithered and hissed malevolently, as if expecting them to get close enough for them to bite.
Orriana immediately drew an arrow from her quiver and placed it in her bow.

“Unfathomable, be careful. We’re here to put an end to your reign of terror. I see your eyes are wide shut, and I suggest you keep them that way because I swear I can shoot faster than you can open them. Are we clear?” she said with a determined tone.

“Is that how you treat me after I invited you into my home?” reproached the gorgon as she shook her head in what appeared to be disappointment (Orriana couldn’t help but scoff) “I am afraid you are not in any position to make threats, dear. I brought you here because I need something from you, and if you don’t listen to what I have to say, then I guess I’ll have to take some… less pacific methods…”

As she said this she pointed straight at the planeswalker, who felt stunned. Not only were the Unfathomable’s eyes closed, the refractor spell tinkered with the gorgons’ senses and the room produced echoes, which would make it impossible for her enemy to pinpoint her exact position, yet the creature had been able to locate it without any trouble. Had it been a lucky guess? Orriana feared the Unfathomable enough not to even consider the possibility.

The gorgon smirked as though realizing the woman’s exact thoughts and snapped her fingers. The room immediately illuminated with a hundred torches and an army of gorgons slithered in (their eyes closed) dragging behind them Elegos and Northia, both bound and blindfolded but otherwise intact.

“Where’s Endelya?” demanded one of the merfolk.

“She’ll be here soon enough, Suvia should bring her here any second now…”

Suvia, that was the name of the creature that had manipulated them into getting here.

“I’m guessing that was a planeswalker, not sure which race, since its powers… So it seems like you have a new ally” said Orriana.

“I prefer to think of him as a pet… He’s loyal to us, he seems to… identify himself with us, and in exchange we treat him well. Oh, speaking of which…”

A creak behind them suggested the door had been opened, and as both merfolk turned around, they saw Suvia being escorted by two gorgons dragging the bound Endelya. Whatever charm he’d cast on them seemed to take a much more attenuated. Nobody in the room knew it, but the Unfathomable was devoting some of her willpower to maintain Suvia’s draining at a minimum.

“Now that we’re all here we may finally begin. Remember, you either listen to what I say or your friends here will pay the price” said the Unfathomable with a slight smile, as if this whole situation was pleasant.

She’s obviously stalling until the spell wears off thought Orriana The three of them knew exactly what they were facing when they came here, and would give their lives to see her dead.

She stared at Elegos who, even though he was gagged and couldn’t see, was nodding lightly, indicating her she should prioritize the fall of the Unfathomable over their lives, and she did.

She released her arrow before the gorgon began her tale. The projectile flew cleanly through the room, barely making any sound, straight towards the creature’s glabella. But the Unfathomable caught the arrow with an equally quick movement, stopping it a mere millimeter before it hit its target, and shattered it with a simple crush of her closed fist. Both parties immediately prepared for battle, but the Unfathomable stopped them with a gesture.

“Listen, I understand you had to try that, and you are forgiven for it this time. But next time I won’t be so lenient, so don’t even dare try that again, understood? I am more powerful than you can imagine, so antagonizing me will only make you die in vain…”

The gorgon decided to relent slightly on containing Suvia’s power, and let his influence be more noticeable to achieve a more peaceful atmosphere.

“Besides, if you’re so scared of me opening my eyes, then you shouldn’t. My eyes aren’t my most powerful weapon. If I wanted you dead I could do it in countless ways, and you wouldn’t even have time to react to it before it happened. Let me ask you a question. Let me ask all of you a question: have you ever wondered why they call me the Unfathomable?”

Everyone stared in silence, even the gorgons. There were faint whispers here and there but nobody had a clear answer.

“My true name is my most threatening power. It has been lost to the ages, and to this date only I know it. Do you want to know why? My name is cursed. Even Malextros didn’t expect me to develop such power when he brought me and my sisters to life, but I did. The reason nobody alive knows my name is because my name kills. I am the only one who can listen to it without being petrified. I am the only one who can say it out loud without dying!

“You see your conundrum now, Orriana? You can expect me to open my eyes, you can see me trying to attack you, but you can never expect hearing my name. How could you possibly hope to prepare to hear a word you’ve never heard before? How do you defend against something that can happen any second without prior warning? How do you fathom the Unfathomable?

“The answer is: you can’t. You can’t threaten me because you have nothing to win and everything to lose from it. From this point forward, any word you hear come out of my mouth can be the last thing you and your friends hear. And that terrifies you to death, doesn’t it?” she added.

Orriana was shaking, she tried to grasp her bow firmly but she felt her strength abandoning her. The Unfathomable’s true name, it was a deadly weapon, she had no choice…

“Lower your weapons” she commanded, throwing her bow to the ground. The others obeyed in resignation. If she couldn’t kill her like this, then she’d do as told, maybe she’d find a weakness she hadn’t expected in the meantime…

“Thank you for your collaboration, darling, now let me tell you why I brought you here…

“All of you are native to Medranos. All of you have something we the gorgons cannot, simply because our father was a stranger, hence our existence is not entirely accepted by our home. Each and every one of you has the capacity of harmonizing with the Alluring Ancient, and therefore you can decipher every creature that exists in this world.

“A few weeks ago we found something that startled us. It was a creature we’d never seen before. It seemed to spawn from the marshland itself and skittered into our palace. We didn’t think of it as a threat, so some of my children went to dispose of it… and they were killed.”

The Medranians gasped, a brand new creature had appeared out of the blue and managed to kill gorgons in their own turf? Orriana thought about the strange insectile beast they’d encountered on their way to Anastra, but it couldn’t be, it was too small and weak to present any real threat.

“My children weren’t fast enough to react to its reflexes. It jumped straight at their faces and crushed their skulls with its teeth. Its jaws are powerful enough to break through bones, apparently. I sent a group of six to deal with it and it was finally contained. Two of my children died, and two more were maimed. It took the combined glare of four gorgons to fully petrify it, since it seemed to even resist our most primal killing method.

“I am not one to scare easily, Orriana, so imagine my shock when the creature was presented to me. Not only that, but lately there seem to be more of those creatures crawling around Gyradros, and my spies indicate that some are appearing in the rest of Medranos.

“I decided something had to be made, and this is where you come in. I realized the only way to stop these creatures was to make a deal with you. Of course I couldn’t just call you to Gyradros or go to the Eternal Fronds myself since you would’ve mistrusted me. I decided you had to consider me enough of a threat to try killing me right here. But then again, how could I have talks of peace with you if I’ve been antagonizing you for years? A few days ago, Suvia came my way…

“You wonder how he could influence you so easily? The answer is simple: he has the power to drain negative emotions from others. He feeds on them, your sorrow sates his hunger. Of course my mental aptitude and old age makes me immune to his talent, and apparently Endelya also has enough strength to resist him, but as long as he’s on my side, I can stop your desire to kill me in any way I want.”

“So you used his as a puppet and had us kill your children while you hid in the ‘comfort’ of Anastra?” said Orriana in a tone that didn’t come out as threatening as she’d intended. Now that the Unfathomable mentioned it, it was getting harder to stay enraged…

“They knew what they were doing, and it has all been for our greater good…” said the gorgon without a hint of remorse, then commanded “Bring it, now!”

Three more gorgons entered the room, carrying what looked like a heavy petrified creature.

It faintly reminded the group of the one they’d encounter on the road, yet it was way bigger, its fangs were much sharper and its tail seemed more developed, sprouting threatening-looking spines all over, it seemed... evolved.

“What’s this?” asked Orriana.

“It’s the creature we found” replied the Unfathomable simply.

“Yes, but what’s its species?”

“You know the answer to that.”

“I’ve never seen something like this in my life.”

“That doesn’t mean you don’t know what it is. Come on, Orriana, don’t underestimate me. I know you know what this creature is. I know the knowledge is killing you. I know the name is in your mind right now, but you are afraid of saying it out loud. You think saying it out loud will make it real, and you don’t want that, but let me tell you something…

“It is real. There’s the evidence. You cannot deny this, so I suggest you accept it so we can start working on dealing with it!”

Orriana sighed as the faintest tear fell from her eye and trickled down her cheek. The Unfathomable was right, this creature could only be one thing.

“Lahessi” she declared, her fear so strong even Suvia himself couldn’t completely drain it from her.

“Exactly” replied the Unfathomable “Medranos has been given a death sentence.”

END OF PART I

Huge thanks to fluffy for collaborating on chapter V (his part starts in the sentence that is all bold.)

@Herzi: thanks for the catch, I changed it to a cast trigger

@Daij: glad you liked it A happy smile

Things to expect wrote:
Here's a list of things you can expect from this set, but beware, one of them is fake! Let's see if you can find it:
1- Pirates, Minotaurs and Vampires in all five colors (Changelings)
2- First seen in Antiquities, last seen in Oath of the Gatewatch (Manlands)
3- A Legendary Instant (Heart of Medranos)
4- A reanimator spell that will make Dread Return look like a bad card
5- A card with CMC over 20
6- Last time it cost 14, now it costs 10
7- A new type of counter (Growth counters)
8- A kill spell that you can use as many times as you want as long as you have the mana (The Unfathomable)

Sun, 2017-07-09 20:03
Neottolemo
Neottolemo's picture

Alright, I catched up with the story and I drew something to celebrate that! (Actually, I drew that before I could find Chapter II, which I had somehow missed, but now I've read that one, too )
I think Hostage Situation should say 'nonattacking' without the hypen (like Ruthless Instincts, for example)
Suvia's Influence probably doesn't need the 'attacking' restriction to be balanced.
I don't know how much the Refractor Spell would be useful in actual matches, but I like how it works well against The Unfathomable's ability.
The rest of the cards from the latest update seem nice! Also, I love Heart of Medranos! Big smile

The original drawings looked much bigger Thanks to fluffy for the help resizing them If anyone wants them I also have bigger versions in which some details are a bit more visible but this was the biggest size which allowed me to put the two drawings side by side


Stuff about the drawings
It's supposed to depict Orianna and Northia shooting arrows back to back, like it happened in the latest update. I referenced from the Orriana picture in Chapter I and from Hostage Situation and a couple other pics. I tried not to change much the designs, but I removed Orriana's shoulderpads because I couldn't figure out how to draw them in that pose or how they'd help her I also tried to make Orriana a bit chubbier than the reference picture, since she's envious of Northia's thinness, but I probably didn't succeed that well. I also tried to clean it up in Paint a bit but I gave up fast... I didn't think the drawings would come out this big when scanned, I'd like to resize them but I don't know how. I'm probably going to draw Suvia next. I also have an idea for Garruk, Arion and Ankryss, but Ankryss is probably going to be hard to draw since he's a nantuko, so, that's why I think drawing Suvia next would be a good idea.
EDIT - Fluffy helped me resize the drawings, so, thanks! Big smile

Sun, 2017-07-09 19:46
fluffyDeathbringer
Moderator
fluffyDeathbringer's picture

I like the Unfathomable's last ability; it has a kind of "even though I'm gone, my influence will always remain" kind of feel.

Remind yourself that overconfidence is a slow and insidious killer.

Avatar by rickenfe13. goats are gay

Sun, 2017-07-09 21:33
MysticalOctopus
MysticalOctopus's picture

Please Update Your Account To Enable Third Party Hosting looks unfun to me.

My Set Hub[/size]

Mon, 2017-07-24 02:45
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

Spoiler:
Extract from Ankryss’ dissection notes

This creature’s digestive system is unlike any I’ve ever seen. Within its mouth are seven salivary glands that pour an extremely potent acid directly into its mouth. A protective mucus layer immunizes the creature from the acid’s corrosive properties, but it appears this substance can dissolve matter of all kinds, both organic and inorganic.

These seven glands seem to serve the purpose of immediately dissolving the food and turning it into a liquid which then enters the digestive tract.

What surprises me the most about this specimen is that it seems to completely lack a stomach or any organ that resembles it or its function. Instead, the rest of the tract is composed of a long intestine that serves the function of absorbing whatever nutrients remain in the diluted food and excreting the rest in a matter of minutes through an orifice at the start of its tail.

This analysis suggest that this creature can potentially eat large quantities of food, which can come in the form of anything that comes in its path, without any problem.

Apparently this creature can never be sated.

Its respiratory system…

PART II: EVOLUTION OF THE LAHESSI

CHAPTER VII: AN ALLIANCE

As the sun struck her golden hair, she inhaled the air, which seemed purer than she’d ever breathed, and basked slightly in the warm light. She was used to the cold and didn’t particularly care for the heat, but this world’s atmosphere seemed to be at the most perfect temperature.

The gigantic tree which had greeted her when she arrived produced a massive shade that seemed to reach farther than the horizon. It was nice to have a break from the scenes she usually faced: invaded worlds, tyrannized cities, hell, she was the daughter of a tyrant!

Arina Blue had thought a place like Medranos could never exist, yet here she was, and she wasn’t afraid of enjoying it. She’d arrived there half an hour or so ago, and she’d been taking down notes. The first thing she noticed (almost immediately actually) was that her watch had stopped the second she’d set foot in this world. In fact, none of her foreign technology worked in Medranos. That, of course, didn’t stop her from investigating; she didn’t need her trinkets to survive…

She had no way of knowing that just a few days earlier Orriana and her group had met the Unfathomable and found out that the ancient monsters known as Lahessi were not a myth after all. She hadn’t even been greeted to the plane, even though she’d arrived at the most important place: the Alluring Ancient itself.

“Excuse me, miss, who are you?” asked a creature as it approached her.

It was an insectile being, like a hybrid between a person and a mantis. Arina prepared Mindmelder just in case. It seemed more curious than hostile, but she was an expert on pretending to be curious to reach her target, so she approached carefully.

So long for a moment of peace she thought as she put her notes away.

“My name is Arina Blue” she said firmly.

The creature started caressing a small twig that it seemed to carry, as if focusing on every detail of it. He opened his eyes and spoke with a smile.

“Arina Blue… that name tells me nothing. You are not from here, you’re a planeswalker, right?” he said.

So they know about us she thought Interesting.

“Welcome to Medranos, Arina, we’re glad to have you here. As a matter of fact, I believe we could use your help… Would you care to follow me?”

As a matter of fact, I would she thought, but she’d rather not upset the native. She still was a powerful woman, and she’d prove it should the situation evolve into a battle. With Mindmelder safely prepared, she followed the insect as it treaded into the forest.

Wherever they walked, giant trees and all sorts of different creatures surrounded them. Arina would’ve wanted to stop and write about them all, but her guide didn’t seem willing to grant her that pleasure. Whatever he needed from her was urgent. She expected an ambush in every turn, yet none came.

A few minutes later they found themselves in from of a tree with a huge carving at its stem that gave way to a house. They entered and Arina saw the most diverse group she’d ever seen together in one room.
The first thing she noticed was that some of her paranoia was easing, but it didn’t so much feel like she was calming down as much as her entire fears being drained.

Stay alert she ordered herself You still don’t know whether these people mean you harm.

Snuffed by this, she focused on the creatures forming the group: elves, merfolk, more of those insectoid creatures, a man that looked more like a giant than a human being, elementals and… was that a gorgon?! And standing quietly beside the gorgon was a smallish, nervous-looking boy.

The group was gathered and staring intently at a map, but they immediately turned their heads and eyed her judgingly.

“Who’s this?” asked an elf with long, dark hair he kept in a ponytail. Soon she’d know his name was Elegos and he was their leader.

“She is a planeswalker” replied the insect that had greeted her with a smile “And I believe she can help our cause. Her name is Arina Blue.”

“Welcome, Arina. Listen to what I have to say and listen carefully” said Elegos sternly “Medranos is in no place to receive newcomers right now. For years we’ve heard the myth of the Lahessi, creatures that were spawned exclusively to consume and destroy… and a few days ago we found out they’re actually real. If we don’t act soon we won’t be able to stop them. We could use you. If you wish to, we will gladly welcome you in our ranks and have you fight by our side. If you don’t wish to take part in our struggles I’ll understand, and I’ll suggest you leave this place before you get hurt. Do you know what you want to do?”

Lahe-what? she thought, since she realized she’d never heard that word before It seems even paradise has its own dark side.

“I’ll be more than glad to join you” she replied with a determined voice “This is not the first time I fight to defend people, I believe I will be of great help.”

She could tell immediately that Elegos was glad and proud of her response, and the other people in the group were silently expressing their gratitude, although the red-haired elf appeared to be eyeing her with a hint of distrust.

Of course Orriana wasn’t distrustful, her spite had come from Arina’s physical appearance and the way she’d expressed herself, since she reminded her of Northia, and having another person that behaved like her nemesis was something she wouldn’t accept peacefully…

“We thank you for your commitment, Arina, and we hope we can stop these atrocities” said Elegos, then he turned around towards the giant and the tiny boy “Garruk, you’ve already become a part of Medranos by winning the Great Hunt, but Suvia and Arina aren’t.

“You two, I have something for you. I will welcome you as part of the plane. I will ask Ankryss to baptize you into Medranos.”

Arina smiled out of the corner of her mouth.

They barely know me and already want to make me a part of their world, either they’re truly desperate or I’ve made one hell of a first impression she thought as she nodded.

Suvia couldn't help but gasp as the implication what Elegos had said washed over him. Baptized into Medranos... fitted into the world as part of it... it felt so immense, so undeserved, so undeniably wonderful that it took the vampire a few moments to even perceive the world around him, let alone respond.

"O-of course," he managed to breathe out, eyes wide. "I... I'll..." But there was far more desire in him to be good and worthy of the bliss than there were suitable words to express it, so he fell silent.

“He should be returning any minute now. But until then, we’ll plan our combat strategy” said the Warden of Medranos sternly.

* * * * *

As Ankryss descended the last mountain, he decided to stop to catch his breath and restore his energy. It had been a long journey. He hadn’t found any more Lahessi in Ellanya, but he was surer than ever that they were indeed those creatures. He started drinking his revitalizing beverage as he recalled his conversation with Gondros…

He had just ended treading the giant’s domains, and he’d sighed with relief. Gibrantos wasn’t particularly hospitable with foreigners. Yes, Ankryss was a renowned biologist and the giant leader respected him, but he knew that if he were spotted he’d have to justify his presence, and even though nobody would attack him Gibrantos would probably consider the nantuko would owe him… The bottom line was that not being spotted in giant territory was the best outcome.

As he left the rugged peaks he found a gigantic forest in the middle of a mesa. It wasn’t nearly as large or as beautiful and the Eternal Fronds, but it had its own unique charm. Elementals were also a tad capricious, but they had a great relationship with the biologist, so they greeted him warmly into their land.

“Ankryss, we are honored to have you here” said an ethereal orb that materialized into a small and impish creature. It was a wisp.

“I’m here to see Gondros, I was informed of something and I’d like to consult him” replied the nantuko. The wisp simply nodded and transformed once more into an orb of light, speeding away from him.

A few minutes later flames began spreading through the forest. Had Ankryss not known better he’d have run away in fear, but this fire did not burn any living organism. This fire was fuel, fuel for the creature that it embodied.

The flames converged in front of the biologist and transformed into a gigantic stag. His entire body was ablaze, and even though he could manifest in any form he pleased, Ankryss had learnt that Gondros preferred looking like an elk.

“Hello, Ankryss, old friend” said the elemental with a deep, powerful voice that echoed all over the mountains “To what do I owe the pleasure of your visit?”

“I’m afraid this visit is everything but pleasurable. I was sent a specimen of a creature that appeared at the feet of an Ellanyan mountain. I’ve been studying the creature for days and recently I discovered some grim news: I believe such creature is a Lahessi.”

“Yes, I’ve heard about the Nertana finding it, and I am afraid that your assumptions are true. The creature is indeed a Lahessi, and it was only the first. My brothers have spotted some Lahessi in the past few days. I’m afraid that they were no mere myth, but a reality. I’ve been wandering the Ancestral Caverns and I have found out about them. Apparently the last appearance of the Lahessi was a thousand years ago.”

“Did you manage to learn how they were defeated back then?”

“I am afraid not, but I did find an expression I found odd… Two words that I’m not sure how to interpret.”

“Which were those words?” asked Ankryss intrigued. Gondros was possibly the wisest Medranian creature alive, if he didn’t know how to interpret something from the Caverns…

Clean slate” replied the elemental mysteriously.

“Clean slate?”

“Indeed.”

Ankryss was indeed shocked. Left without context those words could have many meanings, he’d need more information to figure out their meaning.

“Gondros…”

“Yes?”

“I’m afraid. Even all my knowledge of Medranian biology seems useless when it comes to these creatures.”

“Ankryss, do not worry. I believe this is just a trial. Whatever the Lahessi are, we will find a way to stop them!”

“You’re right. Thank you, my friend.”

Gondros nodded and his body once more burst into innocuous flames that dispersed into the mountains.

The nantuko stood up and continued his way to the Alluring Ancient. If he was to help stop the Lahessi, he’d have to put all his efforts into finding their weakness, if they had one…

He kept walking without wanting to think about that possibility. Instead he decided to focus on the words he’d heard from Gondros: clean slate.

“Whatever those words are” he said out loud to no one in particular “I’m sure they hold the secret to the Lahessi’s purpose and weakness.”

* * * * *

The ceremony took place a few hours later. After Ankryss returned safely home and was briefed on the situation he was more than happy to baptize both planeswalkers. The group was standing in front of the Alluring Ancient, and the nantuko approached it, caressed its bark and extracted some sap from it.

“Suvia, Arina, today you become one of us. I officially welcome to Medranos, I officially make you our brethren” he said as he pressed his thumb on their foreheads, sticking some of the Ancients sap on their skin, which absorbed it almost immediately.

Both planeswalkers felt a strange warmth spread through them and, for a few seconds, they felt their very spirit being anchored to the land.

“You are now a part of something bigger than any of us. You are now our kin. From now on you are bound to us. We’ll be there to help you when you need us the most, to give you strength when you’re at your weakest and ail any pain that befalls you. You see this, Arina? This is you” he said pointing to an almost imperceptible crease in his staff that had finished glowing after spontaneously appearing, then he pointed at one a few centimeters above it “And this is you, Suvia. Welcome to Medranos, welcome to our family.”

Suvia couldn't tear his eyes away from the crease; a part of him wanted to look into it forever, frightened to make a proper first step into the rest of his life. All the same, he looked away, taking in everything around him - the land, the native people who'd welcomed him, and the planeswalker by his side - and breathed deep, allowing himself to accept the reality that he was part of it all.

"Thank you," he whispered, trembling like leaf on the wind and unabashedly crying as emotion took hold. "I... I just... I just want to... be good to it..."

Arina wasn’t as open about her feelings as Suvia, but something in her eyes suggested she was glad after the ceremony. After all, it was nice forming part of a family who wasn’t trying to destroy her or being part of a lineage of tyranny.

For a few minutes everyone was happy and the matter at hand was forgotten. Unfortunately, though none of them knew it at the time, that would be the last moment of peace any of them would ever get on Medranos.

@Neo: yeah, Refractor Spell is meant as a counterspell that discourages your opponents from using any other targetting spells (and it wouldn't work against the Unfathomable were it not because you reminded me it's also meant to target abilities)

@fluffy: glad you caught that

@Octopus: I've switched to imgur. Except for Chapter III all pictures should be visible now.

Mon, 2017-07-17 15:41
WindyDelcarlo
Administrator - MSE Add-On Award
WindyDelcarlo's picture

Insert something here about Arina and contractions. (Don't worry, that's probably one of the hardest things to remember about her speech because it's unnoticeable until it actually shows up.)

Anyways, I just caught up and these Lahessi seem terrifying. (Also, the Legendary Instant was about what I expect.)

Mon, 2017-07-17 15:57
fluffyDeathbringer
Moderator
fluffyDeathbringer's picture

Quote:
“Welcome to Medranos, Arina, we’re glad to have you here. As a matter of fact, I believe we could use your help… Would you care to follow me?”

As a matter of fact, I would she thought, but she’d rather not upset the native.

I think you meant "Would you mind following me?", since Arina's inner response was probably meant as "I don't really want to do this but I'll do it anyway".

Remind yourself that overconfidence is a slow and insidious killer.

Avatar by rickenfe13. goats are gay

Wed, 2017-07-19 20:14
RJ
RJ's picture

United in Cause needs to be worded as:

"~ deals damage to target creature equal to the greatest power among creatures you control.

Discard cards equal to the lowest power among creatures you control, then draw that many cards."

As it stands, it simply doesn't work because you can't define X twice. If you want to make the smallest possible change, the second paragraph needs to use Y instead of X.

Please ignore the clearly insane electrical engineer behind the instrument panel. His meds won't wear off until Thur- it's Friday?? Already?! Oh dear.

Thu, 2017-07-20 00:01
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

@fluffy: I did mean that, thank you

@RJ: WoW, I completely missed that, thank you

Sun, 2017-07-30 04:00
Korakhos
Korakhos's picture

Spoiler:
CHAPTER VIII: AN UNSTOPPABLE FORCE

It had been one week since Arina and Suvia’s baptism, one week, and Northia could not think of a more graphic representation of the word “hell”.

Elegos and her had been fighting in Derrivos for two days nonstop. The day after the ceremony there’d been a Lahessi outburst reported in both Derrivos and Krallyna, they’d appeared out of the blue and taken many people by surprise. The war had started, and they’d apparently lost the first battle.

Two settlements were down already, and they were defending a third one, although the odds didn’t seem to be in their favor. For every Lahessi they killed, three more seemed to appear, and not only that, they seemed stronger than their predecessors. Elegos was more than willing to bet eating the Medranian flora and fauna was making them evolve at an alarming pace, and he was actually right: whatever the Lifepulse of Medranos was, it empowered those who lived there and those who fed on them.

The last few days the Derrivan were powerful enough to leave the creatures at bay, but eventually they were outmatched and forced to retreat, now they were surrounded, and trapped inside a barricade that threatened to fall at any second.

“Over here!” screamed one of the soldiers as Northia ran in his direction.

Some Lahessi had managed to pile up and reach enough height to start dropping through the settlement’s walls. The first few fell to their deaths, crashing violently against the floor and splattering their surroundings with their thick blood and some of their acidic saliva. But as more and more corpses gathered, they eventually managed to form a cushion that spared their brethren, who consequently invaded the garrison.

Northia didn’t even flinch. She shot three consecutive arrows at the first three invaders, who had barely started to growl when they met their end. She kept shooting at those who fell after while she screamed at the sentries of the wall to destroy enough Lahessi for their pile to break and stop the infiltration.

Two of the creatures started focusing on her. She shot an arrow at one of them but its reflexes were quick and it dodged it. The creature responded with a projectile of its own, spitting at her eyes. Had she not been fast enough to close them on time she would’ve been blinded immediately.

Screaming in pain as her eyelids burned, she had no way of controlling the reflex that made her drop her weapon and bring her hands to her eyes, but she did have the willpower to refocus and draw out a dagger.

She opened her eyes and, even though the world was blurred, she could distinguish the green and purple masses that had jumped at her. She swung her weapon back and forth, hoping to strike, and she did. The first Lahessi’s throat was slit, alongside its abdomen, and the creature screeched before dropping dead.

She could hear the second monster wailing, but for a reason she could not determine it seemed to be standing in front of her without approaching. As her vision turned slightly less blurry and she could pick up on a bit more details, she distinguished Elegos, who had come to her aid.

Her father had impaled the creature’s tail to the ground before it could kill her, and her eyesight returned to its original capacities in time for her to see him decapitate it.

“Thank you” she whispered as she stood up.

The outside pile had been toppled, and the onslaught had stopped. Five soldiers and over three dozen Lahessi had died, and at least fifteen soldiers had been hurt. And the battle wasn’t even over.

“They’re at it again!” screamed a soldier on the other side of the encampment.

How are we supposed to stand a chance if we can’t even take a break from them? thought Northia desperately as she quickly ran to face the Lahessi once more.

As she shot her arrows and tore at their bodies while avoiding their acidic spit and razor-sharp fangs, all she could hope was that Krallyna was doing better.

* * * * *

Yrathul was desperate as he’d never been. He’d been taken by surprise when the Lahessi appeared in the oceans of Krallyna and started hunting his people in the water. He’d sent civilians to the Eternal Fronds and had asked for every soldier to stay back and fight. And they were losing.

He saw dozens of Lahessi emerge from under the water and he sighed as he returned to battle once more.

As the creatures squirmed towards him, his hands began shining ocean-blue and he began his spellcasting.

Krallynan Lahessi were different than the other he’d heard about. These ones had no legs and instead had a long, sinuous, snakelike body that allowed them more aerodynamic movements in water, and they were covered in some sort of blubber that made them slippery and hard to target. They also had gills, unlike the land dwelling swarm, it was almost as if they’d been born to exterminate all merfolk without any sort of resistance.

But Yrathul was not letting Krallyna fall without a fight. He focused and began shooting vaporous missiles that impacted in the water and sent jets flying upwards. Two out of three times the geysers caught a Lahessi, who was propelled to the skies and then fell violently on the shore, trying to squirm its way back to the ocean before the tridents got it. For the moment it was the best method the merfolk had to deal with the threat.

But even that method failed soon. Without anybody expecting it, one of the Lahessi fell flatly on the shore but, instead of desperately trying to get back to the water, the skin of both sides began to tear open as it grew legs and started treading on land, heading towards its prey.

“No matter how hard we try, they always find a way to defat our strategy” whispered Yrathul in shock as he saw the creature approach him, its mouth wide open.

He thought he’d die right there since the fear had momentarily paralyzed him. Fortunately, one of his soldiers saw the situation and jumped in front of him, sending a powerful torrent that held the creature at bay for a few seconds. Waking up from his trance, Yrathul closed his fists in the air, summoning his pearled trident and impaling the Lahessi’s head, killing it.

He ran towards the water, realizing that the battle had to be won there if at all. He dove and immediately began rotating his trident, sinking his energy into it. He saw Lahessi quickly swim at him, but he didn’t care, either his spell would work and they’d be dismissed or it would fail and he’d be unable to make anything about it.

As he started channeling the mana of Krallyna, a whirlpool began to form around him. The creatures, not expecting this, were caught on the turbulence and began squirming hopelessly as the currents dragged them from one place to another. Yrathul sighed in relief and began to release his spell in particular spots, making the Lahessi caught in them to be hurled in different directions, carefully chosen to impale them against rocks or to be torn apart by other merfolk soldiers.

For just a few seconds the leader of Krallyna allowed himself a glimmer of hope. Maybe the battle wasn’t lost at all; maybe they’d be able to emerge victorious from-

He felt himself being dragged by the water and gushed out of the ocean, falling violently on the shore as he felt a loud crack indicating he’d broken a bone. The pain that spread through his thorax suggested it was a rib.

As he clumsily stood up he saw the cause: a gigantic Lahessi had emerged from the depths! I was even bigger than any giant Yrathul had ever met, and it seemed to have two smaller mouths at both sides of its maw. It roared disgustingly, and the merfolk leader immediately threw his trident at its face, agony spreading through his side from the broken rib.

The creature simply spat a chunk of its greenish saliva and the weapon dissolved in midair, shattering into a million shards that were smaller than sand.

As the creature descended over him, Yrathul sighed in resignation. He had neither the energy nor the means to stop it. This was it, he was going to die, and he was going to die in just a few seconds…

“I’m sorry, my people. I have failed you…” he whispered with bitterness as the creature’s jaws fell on him and its mouth closed.

* * * * *

“Argh! Get it out!” screamed Elegos desperately as the Lahessi’s teeth bit his right hand and tore it to pieces before Northia’s arrow killed it.

“Father, are you alright?” she asked.

The answer of that question would be relative, since nothing was right in Medranos at that moment, particularly not in Derrivos or, actually, what remained of it. It was confirmed, this settlement was officially the last Derrivan camp that remained; and the way things were going, it wasn’t going to last too long…

“It’s useless. I can neither feel nor move my hand” replied the Warden of Medranos as he stood up hastily and grabbed his sword with his left hand. He was still an excellent swordsman when forced to use it, but he preferred his clever hand.

The Lahessi, aware that their former tactic had been unraveled, discovered they were excellent diggers, and were now assaulting the encampment from below. Not only that, their numbers had grown considerably, and the walls were close to breaking due to being unable to support the pressure of hundreds of monsters piled against them.

“This is it, isn’t it, father?” asked Northia trying to hold back the tears.

“I’m afraid so” he replied grimly “we won’t survive this… But we must still give it our best, for if we at least manage to stall the Lahessi, maybe Orriana and the rest of the group can find a way to stop them.”

Tears began sliding down Northia’s face, of course it would be Orriana who would save Medranos while she and her father were left to die…

“Listen to me” said Elegos grabbing her head with his remaining hand and staring her straight in the eye “What you’re doing today is noble, and Medranos and its people will forever be grateful for it. You’re giving your life for others, and that is the greatest thing anyone can do! You would’ve made an excellent Warden…”

“You mean…?”

“No, I spoke to Ankryss shortly after the baptism and he got Medranos’ verdict. Arion is the rightful successor, but you came in a close second…”

I beat Orriana thought Northia proudly That’s all that really matters.

“But the title of Warden is just that, a title. Your actions today speak louder than any label.

“Northia, I could not be prouder of being your father, and whatever expects us after this, I’m glad to have had you in my life. I love you, you are my greatest legacy” he said as tears started trickling from his eyes.

Father and daughter hugged deeply carried away in the moment. This would be their last hug, they both knew it, so they needed to make it count.

They broke the embrace after what seemed like hours and heard the crack of the walls falling to pieces and giving way to the Lahessi swarm.

“Come get me!” spat Northia violently as she charged, her bow ready and her tears subsiding.

Derrivans ran towards their end. Everyone gave their best, and even though they were more skillful and smarter, Lahessi had numbers, infinite numbers, and that made all the difference. Regardless of how many creatures fell, many more charged. Soon no weapons were strong enough, no amount of ammo was capable of bringing down every single one of those monsters.

The swarm kept charging, soon Elegos was surrounded and, as he stabbed and cut as many Lahessi as he could, they crawled all over him, tearing skin from bone with disgusting ease.

Northia fell shortly after. She didn’t stop when she saw her own father devoured in front of her, she only halted her assault when her own body was ripped to pieces and her screams of pain were muffled by the countless Lahessi that fell over her.

A few kilometers away, Ankryss was holding his staff and praying that what he’d felt was a misunderstanding. But his piece of the Ancient didn’t lie. His face contorted in shock, he knew he’d be crying if his biology allowed him lacrimal glands, and all he could do was whisper…

“So long, Yrathul, Northia and Elegos. You shall be missed…”

Sun, 2017-07-23 08:53
Neottolemo
Neottolemo's picture

Hampering Geyser looks like one of those cards that could be more powerful than they seem at first glance.

Ichorhaze Lahessi and Bane of Krallyna are pretty cool cards.

Also, A sad 'frowny'

Sun, 2017-07-23 15:47
WindyDelcarlo
Administrator - MSE Add-On Award
WindyDelcarlo's picture

No wonder they're having problems. My standard deck would have problems killing the Lahessi

Hampering Geyser looks a lot like a better version of a card called Rishadin Port.

Sun, 2017-07-23 21:08
Cajun
Cajun's picture

iunno. Geyser etbs tapped and doesn't stop you from using the land like Port can effectively do during upkeep. I suppose it can keep a land tapped down permanently unlike Port.

Cajun's Explorations
Planeswalker Template Overhaul
fluffyDeathbringer wrote:
I dunno, Cajun has a habit of doing Dubiously Working new rules stuff

Sun, 2017-07-23 23:11
WindyDelcarlo
Administrator - MSE Add-On Award
WindyDelcarlo's picture

Yeah, Geyser does stop you from using the land. Either you don't tap the land and essentially Port them, or you lock down a land permanently. you can also do it on EOT.