The most exciting part of the 5.0 update for me is the Artifacts’ lore stories. I see it as the return of my favorite Lorekeeper Series written by Sirrian himself two year ago. I was sad it never get a sequel, so I see this update at the perfect opportunity.
But, as it turned out, they are very short, unlike what I expected. There are still a good main plotline, but not as much details as I would like. So… inspired by Sirrian’s work, I decided to write the new one myself.
I’m Thai, and still very new to the writing world, so they could still be some plot holes or Grammar mistakes. You guys can give feedback, or discuss the issues below, or PM me if you want!
This should be the same at the official lore everyone read in the game, just with more elements thrown in. I tried to stay true for the canon as much as possible, by including stories from questlines, old weekly lore posts, and even the Lorekeeper tales itself.
Each chapter will be around 2K words. (The first one is 500 words longer, as I need to create the setting first!) I will try to update weekly, around the Saturday weekly reset, so it should be able to catch up with the current plot in the game.
Hope you guys enjoy my 2.5K-words story as much as I write it!
Chapter 1 - Infernal Invasion
Available in the PDF below.
Chapter 2 - Riddles in the Dark
“My favorite food is knoflookbrood. Nothing is better than enjoying the plate, then easily throwing it at vampires for a quick kill if needed.”
- Van Kane, the Vampire Hunter.
Van Kane’s trip to gathering new weapons was almost a complete success. The trading for a new Bronzelock Pistol and some new silver bullets in Blackhawk went a lot smoother than expected. The pirates were no longer in the mood for fighting with him, after he unleashed the skin necrosis curse on them, on his last visit. He even got some good gold discount this time, instead of the usual robbing, so that was nice.
After getting everything he needed, he also found a new ship, The Black Bulette, that would willingly take him back all the way back to Ghulvania, so he wouldn’t have to walk across the Savanna in Pridelands again. Longsail, a Goblin captain, even agreed to take a quick landing at Maugrim Woods. He had to give the captain some of his protective charms in exchange, but it didn’t matter. Those piece of junks barely helped him anyway.
His quick detour was where everything went wrong. The Maugrim Woods was in trouble, with the trees burning and the Daemons invading everywhere. The Wargare refused to trade the crossbow with him, as they needed all the weapons they had to protect their land, so that was unfortunate for him. This stop was a waste of time. Without any hesitation, he asked the captain to depart for his true destination.
Within an hour, Van Kane saw a familiar figure wandering along the coastline. He told the annoyed captain to stop, then unloaded a small boat, and rowed it to meet his old friend.
It had been a few hours since I departed from Maugrim Woods. The sun was high up in the sky. On this path along the beach, it would take me at least a few days until I reach Ghulvania. Luckily, the better option presented itself.
A pirate ship with a black flag was sailing in shallow water close to the seashore. I was worried at first, until I saw an old acquaintance rowing a small boat in my direction.
“Hey, Van Kane! It’d been a while. What are you doing on the pirate ship?” I asked.
“I only use them for a quicker journey, after my trip for weapons trading. Why are you walking alone on the beach? Where is your army?” He asked back.
“I left them at Maugrim Woods, to assist in fighting the Daemons. I need to get back to Sword’s Edge. Can you help me?” I requested.
“Maybe. You could ask the captain yourself. Come with me.” He said.
I followed him to the boat. He handed one of the oars to me, to help him paddling. After finding our rhythm, I asked him the questions that I wanted his thoughts on.
“So, how is the situation in Ghulvania?”
“The usual. Aside from a bite or two every week, the vampires had been dormant.”
“About the Deamon invasion of Maugrim Woods, would it be possible they might be behind it somehow?”
“Likely not. Why would they take control of a few dogs to terrorize the Wargare?”
“It’s not just some Wargs this time. I saw hundreds of Daemons there. Even Abynissia was involved.”
“Oh… that sucks. I thought it was just the same old hell-break-loose incident. Why do you think the vampires have a part in this?”
“I’m not sure. Some of the Daemons seemed to be under the influence of mind control. Is there a spell that could do this? How about the Crimson Bat?”
“Not sure about the spell, but it can’t be that old bat. You and Avina slew it last year, so it won’t be back for another century at least.”
“Alright. I will investigate a bit more, and report this back to the queen.”
We finished talking just in time as we reached the main ship. We climbed up to meet the crews. Telling him my request, the goblin captain stared at me for a while, then demanded some payment for my passage. I paid him a few golds, but he told me he couldn’t take me all the way to Sword’s Edge. I had to leave a ship with Van Kane in Ghulvania. I tried to negotiate, but my old friend gave me a look that likely meant to warn me to not push my luck, so I backed down instead.
At nightfall, we arrived at the Vampire Kingdom’s port, the Goblin captain immediately kicked us out of the ship, then went back to order his crew to carry some chests down. We paid him no mind, and headed straight to the rebuilt Falconmill Village.
“Something is wrong,” Van Kane said. The place was a lot quieter than usual, and there was not a single villager around. I followed him back to his house. There, we found Avina— a young ginger woman in a red-brown cloak with a stake in her hand— waiting for us.
“I’m glad we get to meet again!” She said and ran to hug me.
“Glad you’re doing well, Avina” I greeted.
“You’re back just in time, friend. I was looking for you.” she turned to talk to my ally.
“Why? Since when would you ever need my help?” He questioned.
“Since now. The vampires had gathered the undead warbands, preparing to invade us! We have to create a guild and wage war with them before it’s too late.” She suggested.
“That’s not good. I thought the vampire had been dormant. I’ve just returned from the Invasion in the northern wood. What are the odds that there would be another assault in such a short time?” I’m worried.
“I know you’re in a rush to get back to your kingdom, but could you help assemble an army and lead them for us first, please?” Van Kane pleaded.
“Why don’t you lead the army yourself? I trust that you have the skill required.” I challenged him.
“Maybe, but I’m too old now. You’re a new commander of the Dragon Knights Army, so you are surely a better fit” He reasoned.
“Alright then. We have no time to lose. Let’s recruit some soldiers!” I commanded.
Beside some brave villagers, we got Tesla— an Adanian engineer passing by— to fight with us. Avina found a rogue vampire, Carmella, to join our side. Avina said that, as her recruit was Sinndshyra’s offsprings. Their kind would be willing to slaughter some Draakulis’ children for revenge. Avina guaranteed with her life that Carmella wouldn’t dare to turn on us, and the rogue vampire would be able to give some insider knowledge to use as an advantage in this war.
With everyone arming themselves with a stake, a torch, a blessed sword, or just some garlic strings— I lead Van Kane, Avina, and our army on the march to the battle at Draakulis’ castle on the southern hill.
The sky was pitch black, with a lot of gray clouds concealing the moon’s shine. With our torches as the only source of light, we carefully made our way through the ravine. Once we were close, Avina told me more information.
“Carmella told me that the vampires had arranged their undead warbands in four waves of attack. We have to defeat their soldiers, vanguard, herald, and champion in that order. Then, we will get to fight with the paragon, The Gray King, himself.” She relied on the details.
“Thanks, Avina. If we stick together through all that, we will have a higher chance to defeat them.” I said.
With the menacing, jagged castle in our sight, we can see hundreds of Wraith, Ghoul, and other undead creatures in front of their domain. With our plan of attack readied, we charged in the war.
The first wave of soldiers was led by Vlad the Unseated, the winged vampire with bat ears. Avina was able to make a quick work of it, with a stake through its hearts. After their leader was gone, it was manageable to eradicate the lesser minions.
Nosferatu, a shape-shifting vampire, was the vanguard in the second wave. It sent a swarm of bats at us, but Tesla, our foreign ally, was able to use her electrified sword to create a chain lighting, taking them all down in one rapid wipe of extermination. Everyone, including me, was amazed by her power.
The third wave was alarmingly calm. We couldn’t see anything besides a single Dark Priestess, the corrupted High Elf. Then, she cast a spell to resurrect the fallen troops, to form Flesh Golems, an abomination of a giant being made from corpses stitched together. Not only that, but the wicked priestess also vivified old armors to be her minions.
“That’s Morthani’s Will, the pawn of Goddess of Death. I didn’t see them around here for a while” Van Kane said.
“How are we going to defeat—”
“Wait a minute… I remembered those types of armors” He seemed to be deep in thought.
“What do you—”
“That’s it! I saw the Goblin from the ship storing them on the chests. So that’s why they wanted to come here, to aid the vampires. I know that wretched green little creature was up to no good!” He was furious.
“We can’t do anything about that now. How are we supposed to fight haunted armors like them?” I asked.
“You can’t. The only way is to kill their summoner. We have to find our way around them and the Golems to reach the priestess” He advised.
It was a disaster. We lost a lot of our guys before we could reach the high elf and kill her with Van Kane’s pistol. At least, all the summoned creatures had become inanimate now, just a moment before the final wave arrived.
Their champion was Dullahan, the headless horseman. Both him and his mount, the Dread Steed, were in rusty, full-plated armors. He was holding a gigantic axe on his right hand, and a cursed pumpkin in his left, to use its eyes to find a new head that would suit him.
He was commanding a horde of Vargouilles, flying bat-like creatures primarily created from the rejected, decapitated heads. They also had the ability to infect everyone they bitten and converted the victims into them as well. We had to be extra careful of them and tried to keep our heads on our shoulders.
Dullahan rushed into our army. Despite the soldiers trying their best to avoid the axe, some of them still lost their lives to the deadly horseman. It was hard to avoid both him and all the flying creatures around. This battle wouldn’t be as easy as I thought.
Suddenly, the high wind was changing direction, blowing the thick clouds away, revealing a full moon. A few of the surviving villagers strangely fell down on their knees one by one, screaming with pain on the battlefield.
“What is going on?” I asked Van Kane.
“They must have lycanthropic genes. Some of the direct descendants of the original founders could have it” he explained.
In a few minutes, the villagers were fully transformed into Werewolves. They attacked Dullahan with primal strengths, weakening him enough for me to finish him off with a final blow of my holy sword.
With all four waves of the undead defeated, we were ready to take on the Paragon of the army, The Gray King, the Undead Ruler of Ghulvania, inside Draakulis’ castle. He was waiting for us in the throne room.
“Nice work slaying all my soldiers, but you won’t be able to thwart our plans.” The king gloated.
“Why would you invade us? I thought we had a deal!” Van Kane shouted.
“This is not just about your kingdom. The whole Krystara will be ours once all of this is over.” The arrogant king said.
“Why would you be so sure?” I doubted.
“What could a few humans like you do? We already sent Glaycion and the Hive Mind to assist in wreaking havoc on the northern forest. My Dark Priestess was able to awaken Vanya Soulmourn from the Underworld for our next plan. With a lot more coming, there is nothing you could do to stop our leader” The king declared with a maniacal grin.
“Whatever your plans are, you won’t be able to see it through. Your reign ended tonight!” Avina roared.
“Then kill me. It doesn’t matter. I will be reborn again soon. But you, after all of you are dead, you will be gone for the eternity” The king said nonchalantly.
“Don’t mind me then.” Van Kane retorted, then dashing to the throne to strike.
I was on my way back to Sword’s Edge. The Gray King was gone, and the Undead Invasion had been prevented, for now. Feeling ecstatic with the victory, Vane Kane and Avina had gone off to do some bounty hunting somewhere. But I couldn’t help but feel worried about the king’s last word.
It was like riddles in the dark. I knew now that the undead controlled Glaycion, but that still couldn’t explain Abynissia and other Daemon’s involvement. Who was behind all of this?
Whatever was coming next, I had to warn Queen Ysabella to prepare her Knights army. Reaching her castle, I hurried to the royal hall to give her the worrying news.
The queen already had a visitor. The Sapphire Knight— a high elf of the north, one of the Royal Guard of Silverglade— had come all the way here to ask for help. The Daemon Invasion had reached their kingdom now as well.
Chapter 3 - 10
Also, PDF download link for easier reading is available here !