Innistrad: Short Story Celebration

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Innistrad is one of the most flavorful blocks ever. In celebration of the wonderful setting creative has put together I'm calling forth all the creativity in the Flavor and Storyline forum.

This is a short story celebration.

If you write a short story that has to do with Innistrad, post it here. Stories can be any length, and you can post as many stories as you want.

Feel free to discuss stories as well.
… and then, the squirrels came.

The Banker and the Geist
Skibo

Eric Cole turned the key to lock his bank. The sun had set, and already the lamplighters were out. He pulled his jacket closed as he stashed he keys. The night air was brisk, unseasonably cold.


The street lamp flames danced as he passed. When all at once those at the end of the street snuffed out. Within the shadows Eric could make out the outline of a man. Lamps behind him extinguished. Then more. Then the final lamp, right outside the bank flickered and went dark.


Eric stood in darkness. He stood breathless, fearful to move, to breathe, to think. Slowly, a voice whispered over the wind,


“Avacyn, the strong and pure
Take my troubles from this world”


“Jacob?” Eric gasped trying to pull the word back in. But the words were gone, echoing supernaturally down the street. He felt a claw reach into his chest and twist his heart. The sharp pain brought him to his knees.


And then the icy hand loosened its grip and let him free. Eric felt his chest to find no blood. He stumbled home and locked the door.


He removed his jacket and collapsed into his arm chair. A fire was already roaring as he examined his chest. The only mark upon it was frost bite, right above his heart.


“Is this a bad time Mr. Cole?” said Mrs. Putnam, the housekeeper.


“No, come in.” Eric buttoned his shirt.


Mrs. Putnam placed Mr. Cole’s dinner on the side table and turned to leave.


“Mrs. Putnam, please sit with me a spell,” he said softly.


“Yes your lordship,” Mrs. Putnam sat by the stool near the fire, “Is there something you’d like to discuss?”


“Mrs. Putnam, what do you think about geists?”


Mrs. Putnam sat quietly, “Well I guess I think about them like a think about people. Some are good, some are bad.”


“You think geists are like people?”


“Sure, I’ve heard stories of fathers dragging their families out of burning buildings, and I’ve heard stories of geists murdering people. It seems to me that what a person is like in life, that’s what he’ll be in death.” Mrs. Putnam stoked the fire.


Eric spoke, “I was attacked tonight. Outside the bank. The lights went out and something reached into my chest and grabbed my heart. I could sense so much… anger.” He trembled. “I thought it was going to kill me.”


“Mr. Cole these things are not uncommon. Just last week her ladyship Mercy had a vagabond ghost in his basement, breaking bottles. You should really come home before sunset.”


“The anger was directed. The geist wanted me,” Eric said.


“Perhaps it was Mr. Timely, he was very angry when you closed his account.”


“It was Jacob,” Eric admitted, “Jacob attacked me.”


“Your brother!” Mrs. Putnam said, “That man was a saint. He would never harm you or anyone else. You’ve just had a traumatic experience, you’re not thinking straight,  sleep on it, you’ll feel better in the morning.”


“You’re right,” Eric said, getting up. “I’m sure it was just a stranger.”


Mr. Cole walked up the stairs and settled into his bed. He snuffed out his light and rested. At midnight the windows flew open. Eric sat up in bed, as the wind whipped the sheets from him. A shadowy figure loomed over him, grabbed his throat and lifted him into the air.


“Jacob, don’t do this,” Eric gasped, “Don’t do this Jacob, don’t.”


The geist opened its mouth, but all that came out was a howl and dust. Its grip tightened.


The door swung open as Mrs. Putnam walked into the door. She threw a silver necklace at the geist. It howled in pain and released its grip. Eric reached into his nightstand and pulled out a blessed dagger, slashing at the spirit. It retreated out the window.


Eric got out of bed, “Mrs. Putnam, I want you to get packed and stay in the guest house. I will have a cathar come tomorrow. Until then, I don’t want you in the house.” He placed the dagger next to the pillow.


“Do you think that’s a good idea?” Mrs. Putnam asked.


“That thing is after me. I don’t want you to get hurt.” He ushered her out the door.


In the morning he sent a message to the local church to send out a cathar. At noon the man came dressed in a heavy cloak, decorated with blessed silver.


“Mr. Cole,” the main said, “I am Hast, a trained specialist in the removal of geists, and the slaying of werewolves. May I come in?”


Eric ushered him into the foyer, “Thank you for coming Hast.”


“I am told you have an especially troublesome geist,” Hast said, “It attacked you outside the bank, and again in your bedroom. Is there anyone who might have a grudge against you?”


“No, no one I can think of. A few angry clients, but no one who would try to murder me.”


“You’re brother died two weeks ago, did he not?” Hast said. “What were the circumstances of his death.”


“He died at sea, on a trip. It was very sudden.”


“And what was your relationship with your brother?” Hast pried.


“It was fine. I loved my brother.” Eric said adamantly, “I don’t know who this thing was, but it wasn’t Jacob.”


Hast stared coldly at Eric, “I find this level of aggression is normally a reaction to an extreme act against the geist. Something like a murder. Are you sure you don’t have anything to confess?”


“I didn’t murder anyone,” Eric said.


“We will set up in your bedroom and wait for nightfall.” Hast motioned towards the stairs, “Lead the way.”


Hast finished preparing himself to excise the geist. Night had fallen, and both men prepared for the spirit to arrive.


“How do these things normally go?” Eric asked.


“It depends on the ghost. Some go peacefully, some lash out. I’ve seen many cathars die by the hands of geists.”


The candles dimmed, as an unseen force began knocking at the window. Hast moved towards the center of the room, putting himself between the window and Eric. “Be gone vicious spirit, this world has nothing to offer you. Leave this man and his house, come no more.” The knocking stopped. Then dust began falling from the ceiling. Hast looked up to see the ceiling cracking.


In an instant the cracks spread out across the ceiling, down the walls. The floor shuddered tossing Eric to the floor. Hast kept his stance.


A black mass manifested above Eric. Hast threw a silver amulet at it, causing it to reel back in pain. It retreated out of the bedroom and into a closet.


Hast flung open the door and peered up a staircase leading up, “Where does this lead?” he asked.


Eric got up, “The attic. But there’s nothing up there.”


Hast pulled a torch from his belt and lit it on a candle, he mounted the stairs leading up to the attic. The torch banished the clinging darkness, as he carefully picked around the room, a keen eye for unnatural shadows.


“What is this?” he said gesturing at the objects covered in sheets.


“Furniture mostly,” Eric hesitated.


Hast grabbed a sheet and pulled. Beakers, flasks, burners, and tubes came into sight. Forbidden chemicals, and equipment. “Alchemy!” Hast snapped.


The door to the attic slammed shut, and the air chilled.


“Of course.” Hast said, “it all makes sense.” He pulled a dagger, “You killed him. You killed your brother and now he’s after you.”


“That’s not true, I loved my brother!”


“What happened?” Hast asked, “Did he find your laboratory?”


“No!”


“Did he tell you he was going to the authorities?”


“No!”


“You had to kill him. It was the only way out.”


“No, that’s not true.”


“What is the truth then Eric. What’s the truth!”


“It’s his. The lab…. It’s Jacob’s.” Eric collapsed. “He was sick… he had problems. I covered it up. It seemed so harmless. He just experimented on animals. But then he tried to recreate vampirism. It was poison. He died and I panicked. I couldn’t let anyone know what he did, what he was. It would ruin me. I buried the body and made up the story of how he was lost at sea. Oh Avacyn help me, I didn’t mean for all this.” Eric broke down sobbing.


The light of the torch began to wane as the darkness forced itself towards the men. “Eric,” Hast said, “this is very important. Where did you bury the body?”


“The basement, I buried him in the basement.”


“We have to get to the basement on consecrate that grave. His spirit won’t rest until we do.” Hast grabbed Eric’s arm. “Eric, snap out of it. I need your help. We can’t lay your brother’s spirit to rest until we sanctify his grave.”


Eric stumbled to his feet, as Hast kicked in the door. At once the room exploded as glassware flew across the room. Eric and Hast shielded their heads as they ran down the stairs. In the hallway, furniture flipped over, and walls cracked, the banister going down the stairs lashed out, throwing Eric against the wall. But both men endured and reached the first floor. A supernatural howl began and grew louder as the men ran through the house to reach the basement stairs. Eric felt invisible hand reach out to grasp him, but he wretched free and continued on. They had to get to the basement.


Hast was the first to reach the basement door, and flinging it open was hit by a blast of darkness. Blinded the cathar felt his way down the stairs. Eric followed slamming the basement door behind him.


“I’m blind,” Hast said as he placed his foot on the dirt of the basement.


“Can you still purify the grave?” Eric asked.


“Yes, just bring me to it,” Hast said. Above the basement door rattled as if a strong wind were gusting just on the other side.


Eric guided Hast to a corner of the basement freshly dug up. “It’s here” he said.


Hast pulled a vial of water and sprinkled it on the spot. “Avacyn, whose light shines both day and night, I ask you to sanctify this ground,” at this the basement door was wrenched from its hinges and thrown down the stairs. A sickle on the wall three off and lodged into Hast’s back. The cathar grunted, and collapsed, but continued the prays.


The spirit manifested over the fallen cathar, hand clutching the sickle. It twisted the blade, taking pleasure in the grunts of the cathar as he continued his prays.


“Stop it!” Eric said, “Jacob this isn’t you. You were sick, but I know there’s good in you. Remember when we were children? The song? You were singing it alone. Sing it with me now.”


“Avacyn, the strong and pure
Take my troubles from this world
Take this veil from my eyes,
Help me see the truth from lies.
Protect my soul when I am to pass,
And let my soul forever rest.
Avacyn, the strong and pure
Take my troubles from this world”


Hast finished the pray. Eric could see his brother vanishing. “Good bye Jacob” he whispered. The spirit vanished completely.


Eric helped Hast to his carriage. “Mr. Cole, your brother’s body will have to be buried in a sanctified graveyard. I will send someone to recover it.”


“I understand” said Eric. “I don’t suppose you could say his body was found at sea.”


“No,” Hast said, “But I don’t see any reason to mention his experiments.”


The driver flicked the reins and the horses began trudging down the street. Down the street Eric could see the sun rising on a new day.

… and then, the squirrels came.
And a link to my previous thread, mostly for posterity.
community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/758...

If you have something to say though, say it here if you could.
Thanks Barinellos, I probably would have linked/reposted my previous thread's stories (for all their pre-release errors) otherwise

There's a lot of good in that contest.  Few entries, but generally high quality.

"Enjoy your screams, Sarpadia - they will soon be muffled beneath snow and ice."
On Worldbuilding - On Crafting Aliens - Pillars of Art and Flavor - Simulationism, Narritivism, and Gamism - Shub-Niggurath in D&D
THE COALITION WAR GAME -Phyrexian Chief Praetor
Round 1: (4-1-2, 1 kill)
Round 2: (16-8-2, 4 kills)
Round 3: (18-9-2, 1 kill)
Round 4: (22-10-0, 2 kills)
Round 5: (56-16-3, 9 kills)
Round 6: (8-7-1)

Last Edited by Ralph on blank, 1920

I did an assignment for a writing class based where I used the card Stormkirk Noble as an inspiration.
It might not match up exactly to the world, I was kind of paranoid that if I revealed my inspiration and all my background came from the Planeswalker's guide it would look bad.

Also if someone could show me how to make spoiler tags that would be pretty cool.
[spoiler]

Un Bon Vein Rouge


2011-09-29


English 3360


The prey are tense today. There’s a certain tension in the air that lends them that most exquisite smell, almost as if I’ve already chased them down. A man’s blood is sweetest when seasoned with the bitter tang of adrenaline, just before the lactic acids can build up. Today the whole town seems on edge, nervous, ready to take flight.


“You’ve picked a fine evening to survey your territories, my lord”


Cool, cloudy, a sharp breeze coming from the South. “Indeed, I think I’ll do my hunting alone tonight, Jefferies you are excused”.


Jefferies smiles at me knowingly. “Very well sir, I’ll instruct the coach to pick you up at the usual time and place”.


It may not be befitting for a vampire of my rank to chase his own prey, but after last night’s grand feast I think I just might need to work an my appetite before I can gorge myself anymore.


As I take up my great coat and step out of the carriage I can’t help but feel a surge of excitement. A young lord again tonight, I hunt my own prey. I feel the smile play across my lips. There is a certain dangerous excitement to the whole notion.


                The small town of Anteil is the Southernmost in my barony. The smell of the vineyards lies heavy on the land. Rich, earthy and sweet. Delicious, like the folk that feed from it. The profits of the wine trade have ensured not a house I pass goes by without at least a coat of whitewash. The cobble stones in the town square, well-fit and rain slick, reflect the last rays of the setting sun.


As soon as I enter the town square they sense my presence. All eyes on their lord.


                Clack, clack, clack


My footsteps echo through a silent town striding among them in full royal regalia. Crimson and gold, maroon and silver. Trimmings in black and burgundy. I let them know me by sight. I want to savour their fear. I want to take in the briny tang of cold sweat that floats in the air. It’s not the only thing I smell. I should have my men pass through, instil in these people the cold fear that smothers the hot rage of rebellion.


The villagers glower at me behind cover like mongrel dogs backed into a corner.  Last week’s festivities have fallen particularly hard on this little burg. I saved the blood of the good wine-fed folk of Anteil for a very special occasion, and what their numbers were spared through the years had come back to them tenfold for the Low Moon’s banquet. As I draw near a large gathering of prey they hold still like frightened deer.


I study each of them in turn.  The old merchant behind his stall, his face rough as gravel, his hair the same colour as the many knives lain out on the table before him, the usual group of wiry old farmers passed over in the selections for my feast, the taut-faced youth, straining to control himself in the presence of his lord.  The last one in particular catches my eye.


I turn up my nose and let out an all too audible sniff of contempt, baiting the mongrel dog so I can enjoy the sight of him fighting to show the self control to stand still and do nothing in the presence of his lord. Oh the hate in his eyes. True to Southern stock he has some spine; he stands proud and does not flee. He merely tugs on his armband intensely- traditional black for mourning, with a fierce ribbon of red across it. Most curious, so many of the black bands here have that unexplained stripe of hot, fiery red splayed across them. The significance of it is lost on me, but surely it is of no importance.


The lad holds fast. I make the first move.



[;/spoiler]
[ sblock ] and [ / sblock ] with out spaces
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I am Red/Green
I am Red/Green
Take The Magic Dual Colour Test - Beta today!
Created with Rum and Monkey's Personality Test Generator.
I'm both instinctive and emotional. I value my own instincts and desires, and either ignore or crush anything that stands in my way; planning and foresight are unnecessary. At best, I'm determined and fierce; at worst, I'm headstrong and infantile.
or [-spoiler-][-/spoiler-] without the - - and you can name it by having [-spoiler=***-][-/spoiler-]

At least, I'm fairly sure you can. That's the code I used on my story thread for Kalenor.

Nice stories guys, I really enjoyed both of them. I was honestly quite surprised at the ending of yours, Skibo. I myself would have left it to a darker ending. Or possibly end it with an open ending. But that's why I didn't write the story

I'll post something shortly. I think I can temporarily shelve Kelanor for the evening to work on this. I already have something in mind...

stay tuned!
Right, I've finished my short story. It isn't my best work, but I hope I've conveyed some of the dread and death that I see in Innistrad.

 

Consummare


Eristaf traversed the forest silently, his black cape billowing behind him. To his right, mountains loomed. Above him, a full moon bathed the world in its milky radiance. Somewhere, a wolf howled. To another man, Eristaf might have been mistaken for a spirit, doomed to wander its woods until such a day that it could be released. In a way, Eristaf was a spirit. A spirit bound to flesh, doomed to Innistrad’s darkness until such a night that it could be delivered from its prison of a body.


And that night was tonight.


In front of him, swiftly moving by his side as he strode through the trees, a wolf growled and bared its teeth, slavering over what would soon be its dinner. But nothing would harm Eristaf tonight. That had been assured.


Eristaf thought of his parents as he traveled. Ever so high nobility of humans, they were. They were raised inside the walls of Thraben, just as they had raised him there. Fortunes were made and prayers were given, and they had sat on their wealth for forty-five years. Their lives had been without purpose.


Eristaf thought of his brother as he traveled. He’d joined the guards of Thraben at a young age, hoping to find his purpose. Oaths were taken, and he was assigned to a city watch position. And his life had been without purpose.


Eristaf thought of himself as he traveled. He’d taken to scholaring when he’d been old enough to read, hoping to find answers to questions long asked. Books had been read, and knowledge gained. But still, his life had been without purpose.


Eristaf thought of when he’d left home, leaving the rules behind for the first time in his seventeen years. His mother had been up, and asked where he was going. He remembered his mother’s breath leaving her body as his hands clenched at her throat.


Eristaf thought of when he’d escaped from Thraben, freedom for the first time in his seventeen years. His brother had been on watch. He remembered his brother’s blood flowing around his dagger as it pierced his heart.


Eristaf thought of when he’d walked through the valley and found his father, ignoring his commands for the first time in his seventeen years. He had been blessing a grave in a graf that was within sight of the city. He remembered his father slowly going silent as his throat was slit.


They’d been without purpose. He had been without purpose. But now, he had a purpose.


He reached the edge of the forest, standing at the base of a mountain cave, and a red glow welcomed him inside.


He reached the edge of a deep pit, rimmed by fire and illuminated by a fire too deep for any to see.


He reached his end, when a hand appeared from behind him and pushed him in.


“Welcome, servant of Griselbrand, to your destiny.”

Alright, this is my tiny contrabution.

Please excuse any grammar or spelling mistakes as I have a learning disabliity that means I cannot realise there are any.

Feed back would be very welcome even if's it word or two.


erdana,sans-serif">Requiem for an angel


erdana,sans-serif">Cai-ann


erdana,sans-serif">When angels despair, what hope can remain for mortals?”


erdana,sans-serif">


erdana,sans-serif">'She is gone' For almost a year that had been the only thought that had travelled through her mind. At first she had continued her duty as an angel of Flight Alabaster but now she could not bring herself to give false hope to those the she would have appeared to.


erdana,sans-serif">


erdana,sans-serif">'Avacyn, why did you order the Flight of Goldnight to stand down? Why did you take him on alone? You must have know he had a plan......No of course you didn't if you had know you wouldn't have engaged him in combat.' Even in her mind the angel was hysterical.


erdana,sans-serif">


erdana,sans-serif">For centuries she had served Avacyn with her entire being and now their hope, their light was gone. Pulled into darkness but the most foul of beings.


erdana,sans-serif">


erdana,sans-serif">'Avacyn..... where are you?' For barley a moment confusion reigned on the creature of lights face.


erdana,sans-serif">erdana,sans-serif">'She is gone.' The angel lay of the foot of and statue of their hope and wept.


erdana,sans-serif">