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[an error occurred while processing this directive] Chainer

Quick Status — Chainer
BirthplaceContinent of Otaria
Borncirca 4276-4296 AR (Argivian Reckoning)
Died4306 AR
Lifeform TypeHuman

Written by member Nemesis

The man we know as Chainer was born in a small village in the salt flats outside of Cabal city. Little is known about his childhood, except that he dreamed of one day fighting in the pits at Cabal city. One day, when he was still young, he met a retired pit fighter named Minat who had lost most of his vision in the dangerous business of pit fighting. Minat was bored and Chainer was eager to learn, so Minat spent some time teaching Chainer the basics of pit fighting, including the death bloom spell, which could easily kill, but was only to be used as a last resort. He also gave Chainer his chain and dagger, the weapons for which he would eventually become famous.

A few years passed, and Chainer apprenticed himself to the Cabal, in hopes of fulfilling his dream. His village no longer offered what was necessary for his further growth. He was initiated to the Cabal, and he dropped his original name, which is unknown, in favor of Maezura, which was personally assigned to him by the Cabal First. His secret name would give the First power over him, as he had been bound to the Cabal by the initiation ritual. On the streets, he would adopt the alias Chainer.

Chainer, Dementia Master, by Mark Zug Chainer was apprenticed to Skellum, who ran an academy devoted to the training of dementists. At first, his training was to be nothing special. He was to be thrown into the pits by the gates of the arena. He was not in any immediate peril; his purpose was to provide a minor spectacle in order to catch the attention of passerby and lure them into the main pits. Chainer did not like the downplaying of his dream, but he kept his silence.

Years went by. He became quite proficient at fighting with the chain and dagger. He was yanked out of the pits and was instead assigned the duty of doing odd jobs for the Cabal. Again, Chainer protested. Again, he kept his silence.

One day, Chainer decided that he needed a break from his tasks for the Cabal. As he sneaked out of the city and into the swamps beyond, he had no idea that in that single day, not only would his fate be set, but the fate of most of Otaria would as well.

Chainer spent much of the afternoon hiking through the swamps. Suddenly, something began to call to him. It was not human, or even a voice, but it commanded that he come immediately. Ever curious, Chainer went to investigate. His path took him to what had once been a residential district, but had been destroyed in a war long ago. It called him to an abandoned mansion. He cautiously entered and climbed down into the basement via his chain. After a short search, he found what had called him so urgently. It was the most amazing thing he had ever seen. It was a spherical object that floated off the ground and radiated blackness. When he looked closer, it showed him visions of what he could use it to obtain. It offered to make him great. And then he realized that such an object was fit only for the First, patriarch of the Cabal. He took the strange sphere, placed it in his satchel, and left the ruined mansion, intent on returning to the city with the sphere still in his possession.

He met trouble just outside the gates of the city. A small party of Order soldiers was waiting for him: Major Teroh, an aven officer, Baankis, a human foot soldier, Reseda, a nantuko, and Callda, a pet bird of the Order. He was stopped by this party, who claimed they had the right to search him for contraband. Chainer knew that if they found the sphere, they would confiscate it. He could not stand to lose something so important and fail to deliver it to the First, so when Baankis tried to take it from him, he attacked him and ran for the gates. The nantuko tried to block him, but he used the sphere to ward it off. It appeared to fear the wonderful object. As he ran for the city, he could hear something huge crashing through the forest, summoned by the nantuko. He did not wait around to see what it was.

He entered the city with the Order patrol close behind. He entered Roupís tavern in an attempt to contact Skellum and escape from the Order. He hated dealing with Roup, but he was the only method Chainer had of contacting his mentor and delivering the package safely to the First. Roup tried to deny him usage of the grapevine, which could contact people all across the city, claiming he could deliver the sphere himself, so Chainer had to use force. Eventually, he contacted Skellum, who told him to wait outside and distract the patrol until he arrived.

Chainer exited the tavern, and immediately Teroh attempted to seize him. Chainer resisted, killing the bird named Callda after it was ordered to attack him. He was, however, too slow to stop Reseda from tackling him, and he lay injured on the ground, at the mercy of the Order. Then Skellum arrived with Azza, a hellhound of the Cabal. Teroh grew hostile with Chainerís mentor as well, and Skellum was forced to fight off the patrol. Azza easily incapacitated Reseda, leaving only the two soldiers. Meanwhile, Skellum created several dementia creatures intended both to lead Chainer to the First and fight off the soldiers. Chainer saw little of this battle, as he left almost immediately on Azzaís back with the sphere.

He was brought to the Firstís manor, where he was escorted in. He found Skellum there waiting for him. His mentor reminded him of certain procedures to follow while in their leaderís presence. Not too long afterwards, the were escorted in to the Firstís reception area.

Chainer was excited. Only once before had he ever been face to face with the First, and that was for his initiation into the Cabal. He presented the sphere to his leader and was both commended for his finding of the object and his loyalty to the Cabal and scolded for killing the Orderís bird. He was dismissed, and he left the manor feeling the best he had in ages.

The next day, Skellum brought him unexpected news. They were both to accompany the First in his private box in the arena for the pit fights that night. During this show, he was told that he was to be trained as a dementist by Skellum and eventually reintroduced into the pits. Chainer could see his dream finally starting to be pieced together.

The training started the next day and grew old very quickly. For the first four months, he was taught about meditation and told lore of past Cabalists and their heroic deeds. This training would not get interesting until four months later, when Skellum brought him a censer, which he told Chainer to attach to the end of his chain. This censer, he was told, would enable him to enter his dementia space and bring forth various beasts.

Skellum instructed him to burn a certain incense know as Dragonís Blood in the censer. With this incense, Chainer was able to enter his masterís dementia space. Skellum showed him the various creatures that populated it and told him that his space was empty as of yet because he had to fill it.

As soon as this lecture had ended, one of the Firstís attendants arrived and directed them to his manor, where they were to see him right away. He had finally learned enough about the sphere, which was called the Mirari. He said that it was very powerful, and everyone on Otaria would desire it on sight. However, he was still unsure about its power, and he announced that he would offer it as a prize in the next tournament, which was coming in a few days. The First had already forseen the contestants of this tournament, and there was one in particular that he was interested in. He was a barbarian warrior form the Pardic mountains, and the First thought that he had the best chance of winning the sphere. Chainer was charged with going to meet the barbarian and find out about him so that the Cabal would have a handle on him if they wanted to retrieve the prize from him. During this time, he was relieved from his training. Skellum was not happy with this, but did not question the First. After they left, he made Chainer promise that he would not enter the pits yet.

Two days later, the games started, and Chainer went to meet the barbarian. His name was Kamahl, and his aim was to win the tournament. At first, Kamahl did not want to be bothered with the cabalist, but Chainer offered help to him and he was allowed to hang around. Kamahl needed money, so Chainer showed him the gambling arena. Chainer was impressed by his new friendís ability to assess a battle. During one if the barbarianís matches, Chainer was also impressed by his fighting skills. He began to develop the notion that he should have been a barbarian.

The fights didnít even have a proper ending. During one match, the city was attacked by a Krosan dragon. Kamahl went to go fight the beast, but Chainer realized he had different obligations. He went to defend the treasure vault from whoever might try to rob it.

Soon, an Order patrol decided to take advantage of the chaos and rob the vault. Chainer confronted them and drew off the power of the nearby Mirari to both draw them into his dementia space and destroy them. However, he was drawn into a different level of dementia space than he had been with Skellum. He wouldnít realize that this was a problem until later.

After the skirmish in the vaults, Chainer went from body to body, absorbing the life energy of the dead until Skellum came and led him back to his quarters. Unbalanced, he lay there for three days. As soon as he woke up, still feeling a bit weakened from his previous experience, Skellum decided it was time to resume his training. This time, he was taken into his own dementia space. It was then that Skellum told him that he had skipped several levels of dementia to a place far more advanced than he should have been. They managed to go back to the necessary level, but not before attracting the attention of a snake-monster that could only have been the product of Chainerís deepest nightmares.

He was taken to another, lower, level of dementia where the shades of everything he had ever killed resided, along with the snake-thing from the level they had last been at. Skellum told Chainer he had to subdue these beasts and then left him alone. At first, the task seemed impossible, but he managed to collar them using his chains and subdue them. Soon after, Skellum returned and took him out. Chainer was a dementia caster at last.

Chainer returned to the pits soon afterwards. At first, he was only in minor shows against relatively harmless monsters, but people soon began to notice his unusual combination of casting and melee fighting skills. He became very popular and went undefeated for a time. Then he was given an assignment by the Master of the Games. He was to fight against a team from the mountains and find out what they wanted. Chainer hated to end his undefeated streak, but did so without a complaint.

It turned out that this team was Kamahlís sister, Jeska, and mentor, Balthor. As the Cabalís house fighter, his job would be to defend a flag while the opposing team tried to destroy it. This way, his life was in no immediate danger. However, Jeska was uncooperative when he tried to stall the match long enough to put on a good show and did not trust him to tell her where her brother was. She attempted to fire a fireball at the flag to destroy it. Chainer did not want the match to end so quickly, so he deflected her shot, but it blasted his arm off just below the elbow. Missing his arm and losing blood quickly, he had no choice but to yield.

Skellum paid for a metallic golem arm to be grafted onto his pupil. The arm functioned the same as a normal arm would, even though it was artificial. The process it took to graft the arm onto him was torture, but he hardly noticed it was there. He met with Jeska and gave her the information she needed. The barbarian soon departed.

Soon after, Chainer received news that Kamahl would be returning to Cabal city and rushed out to the docks to greet his friend. They witnessed Braids returning with the Mirari and Ambassador Laquatus of the Mer Empire. Kamahl was back to compete in the pits once more, so Chainer requested to the Master of the Games that they be permitted to fight as a team. Together they gathered 12 consecutive wins, a Cabal record.

And then the First requested that they ended their winning streak in order to attract the Order back to the pits to fight in the Mirari Games. Chainer was fine with this, but Kamahl refused. He left the manor and Chainer was told that he would have to do this alone. He was also informed that he and Skellum would be taking Shikar into the Krosan forest. Shikar was the last right of passage a dementia caster would have to complete before becoming a full fledged dementist. The ritual would take a week: two days to get to the site, three days of trial, and two days to return. During this time, he would live off only what he could scrounge up. The point of Shikar was to encounter many new beasts so his head would be full of ideas for monsters. He was also told that when he returned he would have two tasks: creating a new familiar for Laquatus and fighting a war against the Order.

Soon after, Chainer was called to the First to meet with Laquatus and determine exactly what he wanted. Chainer was told to start immediately after Shikar was over. After Laquatus was dismissed, the First began talking to Chainer, but Skellum summoned his spirit to watch him. It turned out that Skellum was fighting a deathmatch alongside Braids against Teroh and Baankis, the two soldiers who had harassed Chainer when he had first found the Mirari. Because of his hostilities toward them, the Order soldiers gave Skellum no mercy. Chainer watched as his mentor died, and realized that he died at the Firstís orders. Chainer swore a vow that, as soon as he found a way, he would avenge his mentor and destroy the First.

Shikar went on as planned with Kamahl by his side instead of Skellum. Together they traveled to the site with Kamahl complaining that it was a trap the entire time. Chainer paid him no heed. Chainer was fascinated by Krosaís snakes. He took one of each type into dementia space and preserved the rattles of those he killed. Snakes were much like him: they would wait in the shadows until the time was right, and then attack his victim before they knew what was happening.

Finally, they went as deep into the forest as they were to go and were ambushed as Kamahl had predicted. The two of them easily managed to fight of the beasts. At the end of the fight, Chainer blacked out and had a vision of the god of the Cabal, Kuberr, speaking to him and congratulating him. Chainer was a dementist at last.

When they returned to Cabal city, the found the Order army waiting outside the gates, ready to attack. The two of them stole horses from the Order and got inside the city. They split up, Kamahl going to fight the soldiers, Chainer going to defend the vault. When he got there, he found Braids and Azza already fighting off the Order. They easily drove off the Order with the help of Chainerís nightmares. Chainer also finally killed Baankis, one of the soldiers responsible for Skellumís death. It was the first time he had ever intentionally killed a human being. He was surprised that it did not feel much different than killing an animal. The Order retreated very quickly, their raid a failure. Leaving the Arena, Chainer would find Kamahl face down in the streets, struck down by the Order. He could do nothing immediately, so he entrusted his friend into the care of the healers.

Soon after the raid, Chainer was summoned before the First once more. He watched as those responsible for letting the Order into the city were punished. After all those present except for him were dismissed, the First offered him a reward for protecting the city. He said that he would like to be able to use the Mirari to both heal his friend and create a new jack for Laquatus. The First agreed to these conditions, but only under the circumstances that Chainer help neutralize the Order. Chainer agreed and set out to do so.

Chainer was teleported by the First to a camp where Teroh and the remainder of the Order army rested. He created a nightmare, which was in the form of a man of paper. Inside this horrid creation were insects that, when released, would eat whoever their creator willed them to alive. These insects made short work of the camp. Much to Chainerís pleasure, Teroh, who had been instrumental in Skellumís death managed to escape the tent and Chainer killed him personally, bringing him one step closer to avenging his mentor. When the bugs were done, they turned on each other, leaving only a stable full of horses and one of the healers alive.

When he returned, the First let him use the Mirari to heal Kamahl. He took one of his nightmares, a snake-man, and took some of its parts and magically grafted them onto Kamahl. When he woke up, Kamahl was disgusted with this atrocity. He asked that it be removed, but Chainer refused to do so. Eventually he would take it off himself.

Chainerís next task was to create a new jack for Laquatus. Using the Mirari, he fashioned Burke, a familiar made entirely of an inert gel. Because it did not function in the same way as normal organisms it was virtually unkillable and could easily regenerate itself. At first, the ambassador was unimpressed, but after a demonstration he immediately accepted Chainerís gift. Then Chainer approached the Ambassador and asked him if he could try to find him a secret in his royal libraries. Since he had been very helpful, Laquatus agreed to help him and easily discovered the secret which Chainer required.

The First was also impressed with Chainerís work and asked that he create several familiars much like Laquatusís to serve as his attendants. Chainer agreed, waited until the Mirari was in his hands, and then made his move. He had not forgotten about the Firstís role in Skellumís death and attempted to use the Mirari to exact his revenge. He turned on the First. The Patriarch attempted to neutralize him via his secret name, but Chainer was able to retaliate with the secret he had learned from the Ambassador: the Firstís secret name. This gave him power over his leader. He blasted the patriarch with the death bloom spell for several minutes. Much to his surprise, the First survived. He explained that Kuberr himself had granted him immortality, and he would not die as long as the Cabal lived. However, he surrendered to Chainer and agreed to leave the city in Chainerís possession and flee to Aphetto, a southern city under Cabal control. The First made his announcement of departure to the people of the city and left hastily.

Chainer changed a few things. First, he broke the Cabalís truce with Llawan. Second, he sent dementia beasts to help Laquatus secure the Mer imperial throne. The Mirari games, however, would continue right on schedule.

The games finally came. People from all over Otaria came for their crack at the artifact. However, Chainer had other plans. He sealed all the doors out of the arena, trapping thousands inside with his dementia monsters. Chaos erupted as Chainer retreated back to his chambers. He did not intend to offer the Mirari as a prize, but instead to keep it for himself.

The Kamahl came along, intending to break him free of his madness, even though he was still only halfway recovered from the previous time he had fought. Chainer was not receptive to his friendís tactics, and the barbarianís temper grew short and a fight erupted. Chainer easily subdued the barbarian, but not before Kamahl managed to melt his metal arm into nothing.

Chainer attempted to use the Mirari to replace his arm, but it failed multiple times before he gave up. Frustrated, he grew impatient with the amount of monsters he had summoned and attempted to call them all back with the Mirari so he could kill Kamahl in silence. Kamahl tried to stop him, but he paid no heed.

It was too much for him to handle. The spell called all the beasts back to him, but it transformed him into a writhing black mass. He was dying quickly, finally a victim of the sphere as both Kirtar and Aboshan before him had been. Kamahl came and sat beside him, holding his hand. In his last moments, Chainer managed to break away from the Mirariís curse. He gave the cursed sphere away to his friend, the only one who had tried to come free him from his madness. Chainer lay on the floor with Kamahl by his side for a few minutes until his life expired. Chainer slipped away into death, his torment over at last.

Copyright © 1998 - 2014 and Matthew Manley