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Heather bid the adventurers a good day as they set off to go back to Twilightfalls. She returned to the graveyard to find Frank wandering around the tombstones.

 

“What are you doing?” Heather asked.

 

“I am inspecting the graveyard,” he said. “I want to see if they did anything.”

 

“They were just here for the skeletons,” Heather said.

 

“They probably were, but I want to be sure.”

 

“I thought you said this was a good idea earlier?”

 

“Your idea is good, and this is probably going to work out well for us both, but you need to be careful who you trust.”

 

Heather shook her head. “I thought we just talked about this.”

 

He turned to look at her with his yellow eyes. “You trust people very easily, and maybe your right. But remember the Deathknight and his group. There are a lot more players like him than the group that just left.”

 

“But they don’t have to be,” Heather insisted.

 

Frank nodded his agreement but replied, “No, they don't, but they are. Don't forget that.”

 

“Why did you trust me if you don’t trust anybody else?”

 

He paused in his inspection and looked up at her. “I trust you because you’re not a gamer.”

 

“Why does that make any difference?”

 

“Gamers see things differently. There is always a goal, and in multiplayer games, it is always faster to reach the goal by using other players.”

 

“You always see the bad side of everything,” she accused.

 

“I have good reason to,” he replied and went back to his searching.

 

Heather folded her arms as he wandered off, looking around the graveyard.

 

“Well, I think they were very nice,” she said as she walked back to her tower.

 

She stopped outside and went over the simple spell to reanimate the skeletons, bringing them all back to life, or unlife she supposed. Then she collected her bottles of cider and inside.

 

She began to wonder if she gained anything from the players battling her skeletons. She decided to set the bottles aside and went to her room to check on her progress but discovered a small problem.

 

“Where is my panel? I was sure I left it on the bed.”

 

She looked around the room to see if maybe she set it on the floor.

 

“I’m sure it was on the bed. I set it on the pillow,” she told herself.

 

With rising concern, she threw the blanket and pillow off the bed and looked all around. The panel was nowhere to be found.

 

She felt a deep sense of betrayal as she turned round and round. “It can't be gone!” She searched the bed again and her chest of drawers. With no other option, she had to face reality.

 

“Frank!” she yelled as she ran down the stairs.

 

She ran across the yard and into the back mausoleum. She found him in his lair, looking over the gear on his table.

 

“Frank!” she cried as she ran into the room.

 

He looked up with wide eyes.

 

“What’s wrong?”

 

“I should have listened to you!” she cried. “They took it, and now I don’t know what to do!”

 

Frank shook his head. “They took what?”

 

“My panel!” Heather sobbed.

 

“Those players took your panel?” he asked.

 

“I left it on my bed, and when I went to my room, it was gone!”

 

Frank rolled his shoulders with a sigh. “I knew she was being too nice.”

 

“I should have listened to you. You told me Moon was up to something!”

 

“You were trying to help her, and me at the same time. You just don’t understand how aggressive some gamers can be. All that matters to them is getting what they want.”

 

Heather looked away and sniffled. “I hate this place. It encourages people to be mean.”

 

“Heather, listen,” Frank began. “A lot of people who volunteer to come in here are complete jerks. They come here because they want to behave badly, and know they can without any real repercussions. Most of them are locked in a long struggle to climb to the top so they can be the biggest jerk of them all. But not all of them are like that. There are some players who came in here to try and build something.”

 

“Moon wanted to build something, and she is the biggest jerk of them all!”

 

“Moon obviously has other motives,” he said. “She was so friendly because she wanted you to lower your guard.”

 

“I just wanted to have a place where we could buy things,” Heather said. “I was starting to enjoy being here a little. But your right, people just want to compete and be mean.”

 

Frank walked up to her and fiddled with his fingers. “I don't,” he said. “You were right about what you said earlier. I did want to build a big dungeon and have fun playing with people adventuring in it. But I learned quickly most people didn't share my vision. I never told you, but this is my third graveyard. I built the previous two closer to the city, and they were destroyed. Players weren't happy with just beating me. They had to take away all my progress. I have been reset four times now.”

 

“That's terrible, Frank!” she cried. “So, you had to start over with nothing?”

 

He nodded his head. “Once I was killed trying to enter the city. Once my graveyard was griefed while I was out. They destroyed my lair and waited for me to come back. One time players intentionally used magic to drag me out of the graveyard to kill me so I wouldn’t respawn inside.”

 

“So that you would have to reset?” Heather asked.

 

He nodded his head. “I only wanted to create something people would have fun exploring. Instead, I learned that most people have a lot more fun, ruining things. But I did see other players trying to build things. I saw a group of three witches try to make a haunted forest. It was pretty cool for the week it lasted. Players are never satisfied with just battling the monsters you set out for them. For many, they haven't won until they have destroyed what you built and driven you out. I tried to work with some people and explain what I wanted to do. But they always turned on me when it suited them.”

 

Heather sighed. “And yet you were willing to let me try and work with Moon?”

 

“I was hoping you were right about her, but I was cautiously pessimistic.”

 

“And she sent those people to steal from us,” Heather groaned. “And I fell for it. I should have let you kill them all.”

 

Frank shook his head. “Don’t judge them yet. We don’t know if they were all in on it.”

 

Heather looked up at him with a curious expression. “After all the things players have done to you, you’re still willing to give them a chance?”

 

“I know there are some good people, and if we could somehow get enough of them together, maybe we could finally build something fun. That’s why I was nice to you. I couldn’t pass up my chance to finally have a good person to work with.”

 

“Ohh, You really are a nice guy.”

 

He shrugged. “If you say so.”

 

 

“So what do I do now?” she asked.

 

“We go get your panel back. I don't even know why they took it. They can't use it, and if they wanted it that badly, they could have stolen it while we were there.”

 

“How are we going to get it?” Heather asked. “The whole town might be working for her.”

 

“I doubt the whole town is working for her. She strikes me like the kind of person who knows how to tell people what they want to hear.”

 

“She is certainly good at that,” Heather said crossly.

 

“Most of the people probably see her as you did. The ones who know about her probably think they are in on what's going on.”

 

“What do you mean they think they are in?”

 

Frank shook his head. “I have played some MMOs where you setup guilds or corporations. People always think they are part of the inside group and know whats going on. When the people who are really on top make their move, the others find out too late they are just another pawn.”

 

Heather put a hand to the side of her head as her mind swam with confusion. “How am I going to survive in this world? I don't know anything about games, or the people who play them. I feel like I'm lost in a foreign country and wanted for a crime I didn't commit.”

 

“You will get the hang of it,” Frank said. “And I will help you.”

 

Heather smiled weakly. “But, I don't have my panel anymore.”

 

“We will get it back. To be honest, I have been thinking about your panel. There must be some way for you to hide it, or protect it so nobody can touch it.”

 

“What makes you say that?”

 

He scratched at his head. “I have never heard of one being stolen or even being at risk. The other chosen must have some way of keeping them safe.”

 

“So, not only do I not know anything about gaming, I don't even know how to be a chosen?”

 

“I don’t know either,” he said. “But I bet your panel will tell you if we take the time to look.”

 

She sighed and looked around the room. She felt so foolish being tricked by Moon, and so lost that she didn’t know how to do anything.

 

“We need to make some preparations before we go,” Frank said. “I need you to up top and find a flat rock about the size of your fist and bring it back here.”

 

“What good is that going to do?” she asked.

 

He managed to blink a lidless eye as he smiled a toothy grin. “You're a necromancer. You can help me cheat a limitation.”

 

Heather nodded, but she had a question, she wanted to ask before she left.

 

“I know you said the whole town probably isn’t working for her, but surely enough of them are that they will be a threat.”

 

“If they are as low level as they claimed to be, I will be a serious threat to them, and besides, we have you.”

 

“What good am I going to be?”

 

“My skeletons can't leave the graveyard,” Frank said. “But you're a necromancer. You can take your undead with you anywhere. Now go find that rock, I need to make a change down here before we go.”

 

Heather nodded and went down the hall feeling utterly miserable. More than ever, she wanted out of this world she didn't understand.

 

She searched the yard until she found a realtivly flat white stone. She brushed it off and carried it back down to see a strange sight. Frank knelt in his grave soil pit with a strange blue glow around him. He had his head down, and his eyes closed, but his hands looked as if he was typing.

 

“Frank?” she whispered, not sure if she should disturb him. A moment later, he looked up and stood.

 

“Did you find a stone?” he asked.

 

Heather nodded and held the white stone out.

 

“Good, now I need you to cast a spell on it,” he said.

 

“I don't know any spells, but the animation spell and howl spell,” she said.

 

“You know several more. You just don't realize it,” he said. “The spell I need you to cast is rise again. Necromancers can use a little blood to write a person's name on a stone and then bury it. When the person dies, they will revive where it was buried.”

 

“Ewww,” Heather said. “Where am I going to get blood?”

 

Frank held out a hand and then used a long nail to scratch it. Dark red blood ran from the scratch, making Heather's skin crawl.

 

“Write my name on the stone,” he said.

 

“What!?”

 

“Use the blood and write my name on the stone,” he said.

 

Heather raised a brow, and her left eye twitched. “With what? I don’t have anything to write with.”

 

“Just use your finger,” he insisted.

 

“I’m not sticking my finger in blood!” she snapped.

 

“You picked the wrong class if you're squeamish,” he laughed. “Hurry up, or it will stop bleeding, and I will have to cut myself again.”

 

Heather closed one eye and turned her face sideways as she reached out a finger. She dabbed the blood and with a long “Ewwwww!” wrote ‘Frank’ on the stone.

 

“Now think of the name' rise again'. You should know it by default.”

 

Heather thought of the name and realized she did know it. She looked at the stone and spoke with a cold voice. “Requis Noctril Revivicus.”

 

The stone flashed with a green light as the blood suddenly soaked inside.

 

“Here, give it to me so I can bury it,” Frank asked.

 

Heather was more than grateful to hand him the stone and he quickly buried it deep into the soil of his pit.

 

As he stood back up she looked around the room.

 

“So what change did you make?” she asked.

 

“Oh, just something you suggested earlier. Now let’s get your skeletons and go get your panel back.”

 

Frank went to his table and gathered up some swords and axes then took them to her tower. Heather ordered the skeletons to take the weapons and then to follow her. With a determined heart she set off with Frank to confront the treacherous Moon and get her panel back.

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About the author

omnixius

  • Eastern United States- Thats all your getting.
  • newbie writer, wise old story teller.
  • https://omnixius.enjin.com/

Bio: About me.
I am a fan of fantasy and romance stories. I have been writing from a very early age and love to tell stories. I lack a good education in grammar however and I have been struggling to teach myself.

I love dragons and have for years been working on a story where they featured heavily. This is the culmination of that work. I hope it measures up to some kind of standard and that you the reader deeply enjoy it.

I have no awards to brag about. I have no education to brag about. I haven’t written any award-winning books or articles in major publications. I am just an obscure storyteller shouting his story from the void in the hopes that somebody will hear it.

Thank you so much for reading my story. Sharing what I have and finding a way to focus on it for the future is all I ever wanted to do.

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