(Disclaimer: I do not own Middle-Earth and its lore and Dragon Age as well, all credits goes to the creators who made an amazing fantasy world.)
Date: TA 2945
Location: City of Amaranthine (Replace Bree)
The last city of Arnor, the city of Amaranthine that was once a large kingdom but is now smaller than before long ago. This place used to be the battleground on where the Angmar War happened; thankfully, they decided to rebuild the city but smaller. This city also stand against another that came from the mountains, an enemy that they fought tirelessly against them for years until finally it ended.
Inside one of the houses lies Darrius Vael, a Grey Warden who fought and lived in the war against the Darkspawn of the mountains. He is now a veteran of the war, here to spend what is left of his days in peace until he will have to face the taint of the calling. Before that happens he wishes to spend his last days with his beloved wife and to also write everything about his adventure throughout Middle-Earth, meeting new people, falling in love with some of them, fighting Darkspawn and ending a great war. When he is finished with his story, he will pass this to his wife Leliana who will give this to their future son who will be born in a few months.
Leliana would finally return from buying some food in the market, she came in and placed the food down on the table and notices Darrius sitting there by the bench. She smiles and started to slowly walk up to him from behind, surprising him with her arms wrapped around his neck and gives him a soft kiss to the cheek, causing him to stop while he turns his head to her. Both smiles to one another then he would give her a short passionate kiss, after that he looks back to his book and so did Leliana.
"What are you writing?" She asks
"My story…" He responded
Leliana gets a little look at the book, reading a little bit until she stops when she catches her eye upon something he wrote. "Who's Iona?"
Darrius closes the book before she could read the rest of it. "Nothing…."
"It's nothing, I promise you…. Just writing up on everything I have done on my adventure…"
"Alright…" She was about to turn back but she looks back to him, she smiles while placing her hands on his shoulder then whispers something in his ear. "Try not to add ALL the details about that adventure we did together…" She gives him a little bite to his ear before backing away from him.
"…." He turns back seeing her walking away with a smile on his face, when he looks forward he covered his ear with his hand, smiling a bit but he gives himself a slight slap before opening his book. He opens it back up, takes out this feathered pen out, placing the point of it through this bottle of ink, and finally begins his story.
It began long ago in the lands of the far east, over the mountains and past the great forest lies the greatest kingdom ever built upon Middle-Earth today, the great dwarven kingdom of Erebor. This great stronghold ruled by Thror, the king under the mountain, the mightiest dwarf lord of the mountains.
Erebor was built deep within the heart of this mountain, inside was a giant labyrinth that stretch miles down to its core, the dwarves built this place well to make it a legend. This beauty of this fortress itself was unlike anything you have ever seen before. Its wealth lay within the earth of the mountain, from emeralds to sapphires, to rubies and diamonds, its wealth and treasure would run through this kingdom like river through stone.
The dwarves with their amazing materials they mined to create magnificent objects of pure beauty, ever they delved deeper within the darkness of the mountain, where they will eventually discover what really lies in the core of Middle-Earth. This is where they find it, something that they have never seen before, it was not any riches or any gemstones that lies in the heart of the mountain. Here, deep within Erebor is where they will find something no one in Middle-Earth has ever seen before. The Darkspawn.
The Darkspawn came upon the people of Erebor, caught the dwarves by surprise to see so many rushing through like hordes of goblins, the Darkspawn was to become the next threat to this world. The Darkspawn was not the only threat that came to the dwarves; they brought in a blight with them, causing a short pandemic while they battle against the dwarves. The dwarves were caught by surprise yet again, having their forces and people infected by this pandemic inside the mountain and that got the Darkspawn the chance to swarm across this kingdom, killing everyone in their path and bringing more Darkspawn out of the caverns.
King Thror would seal himself in his treasure room; with his lust for gold, he would not lose his treasure to the blight. Thorin would rally the dwarves, bringing many non-blighted people onto battle to push the Darkspawn back, pushing them back into the dark depths of once they came.
The dwarves rallied to Thorin and pushed the Darkspawn out of there, but once they see what lies inside the caverns, the dwarves would be defenceless when fighting a dragon. A great beast that has been underground for thousands of years, probably during the time of the First Age, the dragon known as Dumat the Archdemon, rose out of the caverns of where the Darkspawn came through. He came ramming through the dwarves as if they were nothing, pushing Thorin and his forces back and causing a serious retreat when the Darkspawn came back out and joined the Archdemon on its assault across Erebor.
King Thror was not going to abandon his treasure; he stayed at the front door striking Darkspawn after Darkspawn until Thorin dragged him away, unable to protect the gold from the Darkspawn army. He dragged him away until he finally sent him to the gate, pushing him out of there while he tries to help the rest of his people escape the blight of the Darkspawn.
The Darkspawn defeated the dwarves of Erebor, which lasted for three days; the blight has come upon Middle-Earth. The Darkspawn has conquered Erebor from the dwarves, making the survivors flee in fear while the dragon takes the throne and their home. Thorin and king Thror had nothing left, the only place near here was Dale where they will take refuge there for now, preparing a defence knowing that the Darkspawn will come rushing out of their kingdom.
Elsewhere in the left side of Erebor on the large mountainside lies an army that was here to challenge the Darkspawn, it was the king of the Woodland Elves of Mirkwood named Thranduil. He approach the edge of the cliffs, looking down seeing the dwarves fleeing in fear from the Darkspawn, seeing Thorin calling out for help, pleading for the elf king to help take back Erebor but in the end he only came here to watch.
King Thranduil did not come to aid with the dwarves; nobody else came to fight the Darkspawn but what Thorin did not know is that Erebor was not the only place where the Darkspawn lives. The Darkspawn has heard the awakening of the Archdemon, the dragon Dumat has called upon the Darkspawn to rise out of the caverns of the lost dwarven fortresses of Middle-Earth. They rose out of the lost kingdoms of Moria and Gundabad, bringing the blight and the slaughter to the races of men and elves.
The lands of Lórien was next to be attacked by the Darkspawn of Moria; they attacked and swarmed over their lands by surprise. The elves were next to be targeted and that is why Thranduil abandoned Erebor and went to Lórien, to fight with the elves to push the Darkspawn back but the blight has already consumed some parts of the lands of Lórien, already corrupting the forest and bringing the elves into a fight against a new enemy.
Elsewhere in the lands of Arnor where the city of Amaranthine stands, replacing the town of Bree. The Darkspawn from Gundabad launches their attack upon the lands of Arnor; they spread across the city of Amaranthine, to the fortress of Vigils Keep and all the way to the Shire. The Darkspawn almost succeeded on destroying Amaranthine however, the elves of Rivendell and the rest of the Dunedain fend off against the Darkspawn. The war in Arnor lasted for a while until they finally driven them back long ago, destroying the Darkspawn at the Battle of Weathertop.
This is to become the new age for the three races and the age of the Darkspawn that has come upon Middle-Earth, the day when a new enemy came upon this land and has declared war upon everyone. This new enemy will not be like what Sauron and his forces of orcs were before, this time the Darkspawn serve only the Archdemon that dwells in the mountains, this was to become the day of reckoning upon Middle-Earth. The Guardians of Middle-Earth are also struggling to protect their lands and borders from the blight, unable to find a way to defeat them and cleanse the blight but eventually they do find a way, a plan that they can use to destroy the blight and the Darkspawn.
This is where it all began, this is here is where the Grey Wardens are created.
In the town on the lake where the sun rises and half of the summer has gone by, inside this town is where two people will have their fates change by the blight when the enemy arrives at the front doors of Lake-town.
One of the anglers arrives at the docks of Lake-town, approaching the entrance with this large boat, having a few barrels with loads of fish inside of them that reached the top of it. The man who would bring the food to the people of Lake-town, the only obstacle in his way is getting his boat through the entrance and inside the town before the authority tries to confiscate the fish.
The gatekeeper would fill in the details in a document and accepted the boat inside Lake-Town, all he needed to do is lend the note to the fisherman but just when he lend his hand out to lend it to him, he was stopped by someone who grabbed his hand to the side. Alfrid, the servant to the Master of Lake-town comes forth and interrupts the deal.
"Well well… If it isn't Bard."
"Looks like you're trying to persuade the gatekeeper to sneak into the town without paying for the toll."
"I didn't bring my money on a fishing trip."
"Well that's a shame…" He started walking onto the boat, looking at the barrels of fish. "And yet somehow you manage to catch all of these fishes…" He turns back to him "In just two hours?"
"Oh come on Alfrid Have a heart for once. There's people in this town that needs to eat."
"Yeah well last time I heard you're a bargemen…" He turns to him "Not a fisherman." He starts walking off the boat "The fish here are illegal."
"This town is struggling Alfrid, are you really going to dump all of this fish into the lake?"
"Well…" He turns back to him "Since you can't pay for the toll, I'm sure we can do an equivalent exchange." He takes a few steps back away, allowing the four guards to stand in between him and Bard. "Take one of the barrels."
Bard steps forward, stopping the guards from taking a step onto the boat. Bard plans to protect the food he has now for the people, even if he has to stand up against the authority here. The guards would not stand for this intimidation from Bard, they were about to draw weapons but someone came through to interrupt this whole mess.
"Is there a problem here?" The woman spoke out, causing everyone to turn their heads towards Aveline who is the captain of the guard of Lake-town.
"It's none of your business, captain." Alfrid said
"I am the captain of the guard here Alfrid." She said when walking up to him, standing in front of him to show how serious she is. "It's my business to watch over the security of Lake-town and what my men do here." She turns her head to the guards while they look back to her "Go back to the barracks."
Alfrid looks back seeing the men he called for this task would abandon him here with Aveline, Bard was relieved to have Aveline here right on time and caused Alfrid to take a few steps back for Aveline to nod her head to the gatekeeper. "Open the gate!" The gatekeeper called out, getting one of the guards to start opening the gate.
"You may have the captain of the guard and the people in your favour Bard!" Alfrid calls to him while he sails in "Just remember, we know where you live."
"It's a little town Alfrid." He said "Everyone knows where everyone lives."
Alfrid looks back to Aveline "This isn't over." He turns back and takes his leave
Aveline sighs relieved when he finally backed away from her, after that she can finally take her leave while Bard sails right on through into the heart of Lake-town, there he will find an area where he can dump all the fish and retrieve a handful of gold. He takes his leave from that boat and started making his way to his house, walking through the town like it was a maze but he knew where he was going. At halfway he meets up with his son Bain at halfway, hugging his son as it has been a while since he saw him, he would do the same thing when he returns home to see his two daughters waiting for him.
Elsewhere in the main structure where the Master lies, sleeping in his mansion that stands as the tallest structure in this whole town. Here is where the lust of gold lies as the Master lives with all that gold underneath his bedroom, where he cares for the gold that dwells in this town and keeps it to himself. The Master will not part with a single coin. Not one piece of it.
Very soon, Alfrid comes through the door to awaken his Master of Lake-town by interrupting his sleep by opening up the bedroom curtains right up just to bring forth the light upon his room. Force to awaken the Master form his sleep, seeing him being blind by the light even with his eyes closed, knowing that this is the time for him to get out of bed and eventually he would come slowly moving off the bed while Alfrid stands there waiting for him to do so.
When the Master comes walking off the bed, feeling a bit shaken as it's getting cold in his room. He sits at the front of the bed looking at Alfrid, asking him to bring some brandy over even though he just woke up.
"Things are coming to a change sire." Alfrid said while pouring in some brandy into this glass "It's the mood of the people, sire, it's turning ugly out there."
"Well what do you expect Alfrid, they are commoner folk here." He turns his head seeing him walking up with the bottle of brandy and his glass. He quickly grabbed the glass and started drinking half of it inside the glass.
"Well there's been talk of an election."
The Master gets up off the bed when he said that "An election? Ha!"
After he got his proper clothes on he started leaving that room and made his way into this library area with the glass of brandy in his hands while Alfrid follows him from behind, continuing the conversation from here while he walks over to the end to this table full of scrolls and wine. "Don't be ridiculous Alfrid, not while I'm here."
"I don't think they would care if you were here or not, sire."
Just as the Master finished his glass, he begun to fill it in by himself with another brandy nearby on the table, filling it up to the same height as before. "It's the work of that…. Bard."
"Well he is married to the captain of the guard, sire."
"That trouble making bargeman." He said while taking his leave from this room, making his way outside on this balcony that shows the large view of Lake-town. "He has the authority and the people on his side, but mark my words he will get what's coming to him."
Later that night, Bard and his son and two daughters comes together by the table in their house, having Bard and the older sister deliver the food to the others, placing the plates down on all sides of the table before they sat down. Very soon, Aveline would come walking through, opening up the door and causing the younger sister to get up to greet her with open arms.
"Hello Tilda." She said to her when letting go of her
"You're here early." Said Bard while he has his back towards her
"Hello to you too, love." She said while walking up to him, giving him a kiss on the cheek before walking to her seat to sit down with her younger daughter sitting down next to her.
"How is the watch?" Bard asks
"So far so good." She responds looking down at the food he and their son brought "But there has been some tremors coming from the mountain."
"Is that bad?" Bain asks her
She smiles softly to him "Everything will be fine."
"That's not what I'm worried about." Bard said, turning his head to her and got her to look back to him "What of the Master?"
"You shouldn't worry about him; it's Alfrid that's the problem here." She leans forward on the table, placing her right arm on the table "This is the second time that I was force to get you out of jail."
"And what happens if it happens the third time?"
"Then you would have to find out then." She leans back on her seat, getting her arm off the table.
Just when they started eating, they did felt another tremor, causing some dust to fall from the ceiling but not on the table though. This got all of them to look up for the moment, hearing that tremor that only lasted for a second, once it was over, Tilda looks to Aveline with a worried look but Aveline didn't worry about it.
"Don't worry about the tremors, they will be gone eventually."
"I just hope your right." Bard mumbled to himself, getting Aveline to look back to him but not saying a word to him.
Later on when they finished eating, Bard and Aveline took them to bed while they stayed up for a little longer. Since it was a peaceful and quiet time at night, Aveline was in the bedroom opening up a window to look out at the view of the town while Bard just finished checking on the girls then came up to see her.
"You're worried about me aren't you?" Aveline asks when Bard entered the room, having her head turned to the side while her body was facing the window.
"There are somethings that I'm worried about."
"Am I one of them?" She turns back to face him, leaning her back against the window and crossing her arms.
Bard would walk up to her "I'm worried about what's going to happen when the Master removes you as captain." Once he got closer, he moves his hands to her waist, getting her to lower her arms and move them back against the bottom of the window.
"Then maybe it's the right time for you to do something in your life." Aveline said "Are you finally going to take the Master's place?"
"We have already been through that." He lets go of her
"I'm sure the children would want that, I think everyone would want you to be the next ruler of Lake-town." She moves her hands forward, moving her left hand to the side of his face "Just what are you waiting for?"
Bard closes his eyes when he felt her hand touching his face; he then moved his right hand over her hand and opened his eyes looking back to her again. Very soon, his eyes would turn elsewhere to the side, looking at the view of the night, noticing something that is in the far distance that caught his eye.
"What is that?" Bard said looking towards this flying looking object.
Aveline turned around to see what Bard was looking at, noticing this large bird in the sky heading towards them and it is getting bigger when it gets closer to the town. "Is that a….."
A great flying beast flies across this quiet and beautiful night, a beast that no one has ever seen before for a long time now, a great High-dragon blighted by the taint, becoming the Archdemon of Erebor. It flew across the land, away from Erebor and coming straight towards Lake-town, since this town isn't really fit to fight a dragon there is no way they can stand against the fires of this great beast.
"It's a bloody dragon!"
"We got to wake up the kids!" Bard said and turns back, quickly running out of the bedroom with Aveline looking at the dragon for the moment but she went after Bard.
The dragon flew high in the sky but once it got closer, it dived down until it was in its range. It began to breathe in the fire in its belly, ready to unleash a great inferno across this town, when closer it sends forth these purple flames upon the town. This beast exhales fires through the town until it reached the other side, making this long flaming line across the town and burning everyone caught in the flames.
The town was in crisis when the dragon attacked, burning many people and sending everyone out of their homes to see what is going on. The flames did not hit the household of where Bard and Aveline live, giving them time to quickly wake up the children and get them out of their beds. They needed to make their escape, knowing this dragon is going to come back with another attack; they would have to go down to the bottom of the house, take a boat and get ready to sail out of the dragons attack.
The whole town was in chaos and not everyone knew what to do, knowing that the dragon will soon come for another attack, which it will, bringing fire upon this town again and burning more people and buildings to ashes. With this as a state of emergency, the Master quickly needed to abandon the town, taking all of his prize possessions and fleeing in a large boat under the mansion before the dragon comes back. Very soon, everyone would do the same thing, quickly packing up and escaping before the dragon comes back again, not knowing that this here is just the beginning of its wrath.
With the Archdemon here upon Lake-town, that would mean that the Darkspawn is also here as well. Thousands of Darkspawn would be here to finish what its master has started; making things worst for the people as they come charging over this long bridge, making things harder for the people. The Darkspawn sprints over this one-way bridge, making their way into town and began the slaughter of the people while the dragon flies around to spectate above the town. The Darkspawn will overrun this whole town, slaughtering every single person in town and the guards could not do a damn thing about it.
This town being lost to a matter of seconds, everyone needed to abandon it by going on boat to flee; it was the only way out of this town since the Darkspawn have taken the exit. Bard and Aveline are trying their best to protect their children from the Darkspawn, having Bard drawing out his bow and loading an arrow ready while Aveline and Bain was busy rowing the boat out of here. Very soon, the younger sister would scream when seeing this monstrosity running down this small pathway heading towards them, quickly getting Bard to fire his arrow and getting his arrow running through one and sending it through the head and hitting the other one behind it.
"We have to leave, now!" Bard said, taking out another arrow and looking around to see if there is any more Darkspawn coming.
"Up there!" The older sister points out to the roofs in the distance, seeing three Darkspawn up there armed with bows.
Bard quickly took aim and fired at one of them, hitting the chest and sending it collapsing off the roof and crashing into the water. The other two would fire towards him, one would miss but the other one was coming at him. Luckily for Bard, Aveline rose up on the boat and held her shield forward to block that attack, not going to allow her husband to die here and now.
Elsewhere the Master was in a hurry on his boat full of gold, having Alfrid by his side and four guards rowing the boat and another man standing at the front of it with his sword drawn. They plan to get out of here, not taking anyone with them due to this boat already crowded with gold from the Master's chambers.
"I wish we can take some of these poor people with us." The Master said
"There not really that valuable here sire." Alfrid said "Besides there's not enough room to –" He notices a man in the water trying to crawl his way on the boat. Alfrid went and kicked him in the face, kicking him off the boat while they keep moving.
Elsewhere back with Bard and the others, they held position under another building just to wait for the dragon to come flying past their heads. Once cleared they quickly made a move to the open, with Bard only having one arrow left he was ready to use it well and that is when more Darkspawn appear attacking the citizens. Four of them just killed the parents of the two kids who are running for their lives, unable to save them they would watch as the Darkspawn cuts them down in the back and very soon, they go charging towards them on the boat.
"We don't have time for this!" Aveline said
Bard took aim seeing that he only had one arrow and was not enough to take them all out at once, with him hesitating to fire he lowers his bow and looks back to Aveline, seeing her sword still in its sheath on her waist. He quickly acts in a rash decision that will get them all worried, first thing he does is looking back to the Darkspawn and fired his arrow to pierce through one of them, he then drops the bow and quickly crouches down to grab Aveline's sword.
"W-What are you doing?!"
Bard drew out her sword and got up "Saving my family." He then jumps off the boat, landing on the pathway
"Bard no –"
He runs towards the Darkspawn with that sword, he swings down at the one in front of him then kicks it back against the others, one of the Darkspawn would run around it but he clashes against its sword. Bard slides his sword upwards against that grunts sword, swinging upwards and beheading it and sending that grunt into the water.
Bard looks back to Aveline "Get them out of here, now!" He looks forward and defends himself against another grunt.
"Dad!" Tilda shouts to him
Bard punches another Darkspawn before looking back to them "Go!" He then looks forward and clashes against that very Darkspawn he punched.
"We have to go." Aveline said
"But what abou –"
"Don't worry about him!" She shouts "He will be right behind us, now let's keep going."
Bard stays and fights off against the Darkspawn and giving them time to row out of there, getting the Darkspawn to fight him and not go after his family. While they keep moving, rowing away from the fight and Bard would soon give chase after he's done here, running after them and watching their back just in case. They are so close of seeing the wide open waters, they just need to keep going but that is where the Master and his boat comes clashing against theirs, causing Tilda and Sigrid to panic when they almost felt like their boat was about to flip. The Master and their boat would try to continue going, seeing that they are carrying too much weight and causing the gold on the side to go falling into the water.
"Blast these confounded people… Look at my gold!" He shouts "All my gold!"
"Were carrying too much weight…" Alfrid said "We need to dump something!"
The Master slowly turns his head to him with a slight smile on his face and nodding to himself "Right you are Alfrid." He gives him a push in the back, sending Alfrid to gasp when falling off the boat and into the water while they continue rowing out of here.
Soon Aveline and the family got the boat back in line and moved behind the Master's boat while he keeps rowing out of here, wanting to be the first to escape. Bard would just run after them until he gets delayed, seeing two Darkspawn preparing to take aim at his family, quickly pushing one into the water and using his sword to stab it through the side of the chest. Once it was clear, he looks back when he heard the roar of the dragon, seeing it heading straight towards them while letting off another line of fire from its first attack upon the town.
"No…" He mumbled to himself then looks back to Aveline "Get out of there!"
Aveline looks back seeing the dragon almost upon them, with no time to avoid this she tried to use herself as a shield to protect her children. Just when the dragon came, it did not target them and instead it past them to the side, burning all the buildings on their right, having them time to make their move. Everyone was relieved but the Master on the other hand kept going, seeing they are home free from this attack while Aveline and Bain started rowing out of here from behind them.
Bard would soon strike down one more Darkspawn before looking back, leaving his sword through this one due to being stuck inside as he pierced its armour. Bard would go running after them, about to jump back on board but a sudden disaster would occur when that burning building on their right would start to collapse, unable to hold anymore, the side of it begun to break off and would go falling down.
Bard noticed it on time and looks back to them. "Aveline!" He calls out to her
Aveline looks up seeing the structure about to come crashing down upon them, both Tilda and Sigrid scream out when seeing it coming down, Aveline just tried to shield them again but that would not really work. It came crashing hard upon them, that flaming building crushed them and sent them underwater while Bard watched and gasped when seeing it.
"NOOO!" He shouts as it crashed on top of his family. He started moving closer towards the wreckage, ignoring the fact that they could be dead. "Aveline!... Bain… Tilda… Sigrid!"
His heart and body broke when seeing what just happened to them, he was frozen and felt like he was not breathing. He kneeled down whimpering, being a wreck and couldn't really get back up as he just watched as that building slowly sinks down into the water, he couldn't do anything right now but sit there and watch as his whole life shattered.
As he just lies there like a broken man, a Darkspawn captain would come walking up to Bard, wielding this large battle-axe covered in the blood of the people this captain slaughtered. Bard slowly raises his head when it looks down at him, that captain would raise his axe up high with two hands to it, ready to swing down at him while Bard lowered his head, closing his eyes as if he accepted his fate.