Chapter Two
False Prophets

            "Draxinusom..." the Avatar said under his breath. "How couldst thou?"
            "Oh Avatar, don't pretend to be so shocked." said the Gargoyle, now identified as the Gargoyle lord Draxinusom. "The voice of god has revealed itself to us! We hear it in our minds! And some gargoyles have even met the great lord himself! God has reminded us of you being the False Prophet, now we must kill you!"
            "But, you know that I..."
            "You are fool Avatar! To think that all that time we weren't planning your death! You ARE the false prophet! And I will have the honor of killing you myself!"
            Draxinusom thrusted his spear towards the Avatar's gut, but the Avatar used his ethereal power to float above the attack so fast he left a trail of his own image behind him.
            "Ah, stronger this time. I will enjoy this..." Taunted Draxinusom. Draxinusom flew a few yards up and dove down at the Avatar, knocking him over with the spear hilt. Still flying, Draxinusom turned around only to find the Avatar flying as well.
            "I am MUCH stronger this time old friend! I now command the very ether!"
            The Avatar fisted his right hand and developed a magical sphere which flung itself at Draxinusom knocking him against the crumbled castle wall and into the moat. The Avatar landed on the ground and ran to Draxinusom.
            "No... I cannot lose..." said Draxinusom.
            "Thou hast been lead astray my friend!" said the Avatar. "Your virtue of singularity... Why hast thou renounced it?"
            "You can't possibly be that stupid! Virtue is dead!" Draxinusom stood on his feet and threw his spear aside. "YOU ARE DEAD!!!!"
            Draxinusom desperately leaped at the Avatar but was easily avoided as the Avatar teleported himself atop the castle wall, and watched as Draxinusom fell against the cobbled road head first.
            "Why hast thou done this Guardian..." the Avatar gritted. He teleported back to the side of Draxinusom's body. His face was scraped off the left side of his head and masses of blood poured out of his mouth.
            "I am sorry Draxinusom... Thou didst leave me no choice..."
            Draxinusom slowly attempted to lift his head to speak his final words.
            "Damn you... Avatar..." Draxinusom dropped his head and died.
            The Avatar took a moment to mourn the Gargoyle's death, and was suddenly aware of the battle around him again. As he turned to aid in the struggle, an orc charged into the Avatar's back with a massive warhammer. The strike would normally have killed a normal person, but the Titan of Ether could not be hurt by such an attack and merely gave the Avatar a sudden jolt of attention.
            "Ergh? Human no hurt!?" said the confused orc. "Human not human! Human, AVATAR!" The orc dropped his warhammer and ran away, screaming an inhuman cry of fear. The Guardian obviously warned the evil army of the Avatar.
            The Avatar returned to battle and decided he should take down the cyclops first. When the Avatar was fighting Draxinusom, the cyclops managed to bring a guard to his knees begging for his life. But before the cyclops could kill him, a blast of ethereal energy struck his side and knocked him over. The guard took shelter in a nearby ruined house made of dozens of small sticks tied together with string as the cyclops regained his senses and discovered the Avatar hovering just above him.
            "Argh... You fly?" asked the cyclops. "Humans no fly. Humans DIE!"
            The cyclops stood up. His height was a towering 16 feet tall and 5 feet wide. The cyclops lifted his club and brought it down on the Avatar, knocking him back to the ground.
            "He can't hurt me..." Thought the Avatar. "But he can still push me around!"
            The Avatar teleported himself onto the cyclop's back and attempted to strangle to beast from behind. The cyclops grabbed the Avatar and threw him into the house the guard retreated to. Assuming the Avatar was dead, the cyclops turned to aid his comrades only to find the Avatar right behind him. The Avatar fisted both of his hands, masses of ethereal energy built up all around him so much even the mongbats were watching in awe. Once enough energy was conducted, he let out a scream of relief and sent a shockwave of the ether throughout Britain, eliminating the every last monster of the evil army in the siege.
            When the ether wave dissippated, the Avatar fell to his knees completely exhausted and blacked out...

The Guardian's chamber on the Isle of the Avatar:

            The Guardian sat on his blackrock throne with his eyes closed. The walls were made of stone, though made pitch black due to the Guardian's dark energy. The gargoyle Forskis stood by his side, the once strong Gargoyle was now scared and rotting. His body was in a decaying greyish-red color. Over his shoulder was a wooden staff with a human skull on one end.
            "So, you're more powerful than I thought..." said the Guardian as he opened his eyes. "Forskis!!!"
            "Master?" said Forskis.
            "The Avatar was able to kill everything evil in the capital city... Do you think you can get close to him?"
            "To kill him?"
            "Answer my question, gargoyle!"
            "Yes. To not recognize me after all this time. To once hear him say all gargoyles look the same."
            "Good, I have a feeling the Avatar's next destination will be Cove. He has... 'personal' business to attend to there. Get two of the best winged gargoyles available to Cove, and tell them to hide there someplace until they hear me."
            "To obey master. To think the Avatar will go to Skara Brae instead. To have been told of suspicions there. To..."
            The Guardian scowled at Forskis.
            "To be sorry... To not speak anymore."

Two days later, at Castle Britannia:

            The Avatar awoke in a four walled room made of wooden planks. He was in a cot only two inches off the floor and quite uncomfortable.
            "Wh... Where am I?" he asked himself aloud.
            "The golden city of Britain." Somebody in the room said. "The roads made of silver, jolly rich merchants fill the markets, and the mighty guards ensure a crimeless state of economy!"
            The Avatar regained his mind and spotted Sentri in the corner. He was obviously in a humorous mood.
            "Welcome back to Britannia Avatar."
            "What happened?"
            "When thou didst thy magic act, all the creatures in Britain just disappeared. Then thou didst go out cold, I brought thee to my home to recover!"
            The Avatar studdied the room.
            "Thou dost live like an animal!" said the Avatar.
            Sentri chuckled at the Avatar's remark. Then he got a serious expression and started with questions.
            "Avatar, didst thou do it?" said Sentri.
            "Do what?"
            "Don't pretend please. Thy magical act. How?"
            "Well... I am now the great Titan of Ether. When I went to the Serpent Isle and succeeded in my quest, but afterward I was captured by the Guardian and banished to Pagan. There I discovered that there was a titan for each element Earth, Fire, and so on. However there was a fifth element... Ether. There was no titan of ether, so I undertook the quest and overpowered the other four titans. In the end I became the Titan of Ether."
            "Heh heh. So no change then?"
            "Heh, no. Same old, same old."
            Both continued to joke and socialize for a couple hours. Then Sentri popped a serious question.
            "So... Whatever happened to Shamino, Iolo, and Dupre?" he asked.
            "Um, didn't they somehow get back to Britannia?"
            "Erm, no. I thought they were still in Serpent Isle."
            The Avatar started thinking again. "I was teleported when I struck the Great Earth Serpent, but where did my companions go? The Great Earth Serpent wouldn't have left them behind, would he?"
            Returning the Avatar to conversation, Sentri brought up another topic. "So, thou didst find what became of the missing gargoyles?"
            "Yes, Draxinusom... He..."
            "I know, I know... This was the first time a gargoyle even joined a battle. In the past we usually spotted a winged gargoyle observe the battles with the evil army... Um, dost thou know of them yet?"
            "Yes, Lord British told me of the events."
            "Good, anyway... The observing gargoyles never attacked, just hovered far above the battles just watching... As if they were waiting for something."
            "Most likely for my return. How long hath it been since last we met?"
            "This will be hard to believe. But it hath been a mere four months. Quite short compared to thy 200 years last time."
            The Avatar got off the cot and wearily stood up again.
            "I may need thy help Sentri. I am heading for Cove, wouldst thou care to..."
            "Gee, Avatar, I'd be happy to join thee! But only if thou doth promise me something..."
            "Name it."
            "A few days after thou didst leave for the Serpent Isle, I was notified of thy departure and was made the temporary 'Avatar' of Britain. I never even knew of Serpent Isle until a week afterward! Next time... Take me with you!"
            Both smiled and left the house...


            To you longtime Ultima fans, you'll understand why the Avatar is heading for Cove and not Skara Brae or New Magincia. So this isn't a bad plot-point, okay? And for you 'Gargoyle' fans, you'll find the reason for Draxinusom's changed speech soon enough.

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