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Slashes Eternal: The Rise of Zorc

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8O SPOILER WARNING!
This article contains plot details about stories.

About

This was a story written by Ludicrine for the Alpha Timeline that was deleted due to a realization that completion of it would take an unreasonable amount of time. A summary exists to inform players of the events that would have taken place during it, primarily in order to bypass any confusion that may come up regarding any of the story's frequent mentions on this site. This article is set to be deleted and removed from canon at a future date.

The Condensed Story

The story jumps in around a week after the end of Cuts Internal, where it is described that Zorc has sent most of the continent into a state of chaos and fear, made simple by the assistance of his allies, the High Generals. By procuring the individual fears of people and using them during battle, they were easily able to conquer all lines of defense by reducing their adversaries to a state of submission, which allowed Zorc to absorb their souls and become stronger. Zachary, Samuel, Lazro, Iala, and Ludicrine have spent the past few days trying to stop Zorc, but to no avail, and then went back to basics and stockpiled what they knew of what was happening and thought up a plan to defeat him once and for all. Elizabeth was tending to Foszi's immense wounds from his earlier battle, leaving the both of them unavailable, Ludicrine had gone almost completely mad, Samuel was a bit angrier than his usual self due to the death of Chipper, and Revelian's death led the crew to be devastated and not entirely focused. With almost no connections to any other people besides each other, Zorc's seven-day takeover on Ludus seemed to have taken a giant toll on the gang. To make matters much worse, Luna actively sought to murder Ludi due to his role at the death of her husband.

With very little left to lose, the gang hopelessly decides to attack Zorc's High Generals- Outhiterous, Psychopsis, Varbolt, and Nigredo- in an attempt to at least weaken his force as a last course of action. On their journey to Outhiterous, they encounter a slightly-intoxicated Shane, who insists that he join the party on their quest. After somewhat lengthy and difficult battles, the group heads to the fort of Outhiterous, who has powers over the manipulation of the fears of all people. Prior to battling him, they find two Revival Rings, which are then worn by Ludicrine and Samuel, who both assume that they can use their powers to bring back Revelian at a later time. During the fight, Outhiterous is defeated easily by making him produce incredibly weak fears that other people have, such as small insects and certain foods. At his death, he congratulates the group on their cleverness, but mentions that his master is far more crafty than they are. He also tells them that the Revival Rings do not actually revive dead creatures, much to their dismay. The scene cuts briefly to Luna, who continues stalking the crew's trail in an attempt to pick off and murder Ludicrine.

En route towards the next High General, Psychopsis, Sam is viciously attacked by a creature called a Root Snake, causing him to have his mind loosened up as a side effect of its venom. After the enemy is defeated, it becomes clear that Ludicrine, Samuel, and Shane will not have any valuable input on how to find Psychopsis due to their respective mental overload, "insamne" comments, and drunkenness. With Zach, Lazro, and surprisingly Iala being the only three relatively competent thinkers available, the two briefly note that splitting up the group to care for the ill-suited ones may be a last-resort option.

Psychopsis, who happened to be nearby where the crew was resting, picked up the scent of a nearby Luna and began attacking them with the appearance of a fearsome animal, mistaking the group of adventurers for Luna and mistaking Luna for a wild beast that he could eat. After being attacked by Zach, Lazro, Iala, and a sobered-up Shane, he takes the appearance of Ao Oni X, Lazro's apparent fear. Despite this, he loses a short battle and absconds into a pocket dimension accessed by a door in the middle of nowhere.

Sam and Ludi unintentionally reveal the true uses of the Revival Rings by following up a session of absolute gibberish with a fistbump, which promptly created a gigantic tower in front of them. Finding a practical use for "summoning that freaking tower out of absolutely nowhere", Zach notes that the two could easily break down the door with the rings (which Ludicrine and Samuel do not pick up on at all), which they eventually do. Upon entering the doors, the group finds themselves inside the Tower of Revival itself (which the doors were actually a pocket teleport to), causing reality to slowly collapse around them. Rushing to meet up with Psychopsis, the group fights the High General in a battle against time. Throughout the struggle, Psychopsis takes the forms of Ao Oni X, Zalgo, an asexual tentacle monster, and various other fears of the team. With the tower about to collapse, the gang decides that the safest course of action is to escape and seek out Psychopsis later in a safer environment, leaving them all to abscond.

Noting that Ludicrine is too much of a hindrance and a hazard to be kept around, it is decided that Shane should keep watch over him while the rest of the group continues their travels to stop Zorc's minions. Zach leads the rest of the group towards Psychopsis' direction while Shane goes off to guard Ludi, who has already wandered off and disappeared by the time he turns his back. He is promptly captured by Luna, who wounds him and tries to interrogate him about her husband's passing. The scene cuts to yet another battle with Psychopsis, where Sam's "insamnity" reaches its peak. With newly granted Mind powers in addition to his Weather control, he uses "sicnec and thinder" to summon a Giant Enemy Crab to take down Psychopsis in an "increndible wombo combo". After this, Psychopsis is dead for good, and the Root Snake venom within Samuel finally wears off. The group considers going back for Ludicrine before taking on the next High General, Varbolt, but decide against it.

Back where Luna has Ludicrine captive, she continues to torture and beat him in an attempt to get revenge and details out of him, though he remains entirely silent and unresponsive to her attacks. At her breaking point, she aims her gun at his head, at which point he begins whispering the Wonder Jungle Telepathy Board's message to himself. He begins crying and yelling, insisting that The Mistress had died and that he could feel it in his heart. Turning to an almost frightening, nihilistic point of view and blaming himself for the deaths of all that he had encountered, Luna eventually lets him go, believing that there is nothing for her to destroy in him and reluctantly believing that Cut is in control of Ludicrine at the moment.

The broken remaining Heroes of Acceptance and their allies are met by Elizabeth and Foszi, who come to aid the two since Genoskaya is busy panicking over the death of a Grand Doomer. Foszi, still wounded from his last battle, still proves to be a valuable ally in Ludicrine's absence. Shane returns with Ludicrine, who is unusually compliant with the questions of others. He reveals himself after interrogation to actually be Varbolt, the next High General, and battle ensues. He taunts the team by inciting their inner fears and key flaws, stirring up their respective "shadow selves" (first seen in Corruption: He Comes). Shane, however, flips the switch on Varbolt and manages to get him to reveal more about himself - he is a Durasthe, outcast by both Serrangios and Doomers, and was employed by Zorc for his rage at both species. While he is distracted by his monologue and kept busy by the heroes convincing him that his goals will earn him no respect by even Zorc or the other generals, Lazro deals a finishing blow, slaying him, which he immediately feels guilty over.

As the heroes continue to travel, Shane goes on ahead to scout and to search for Ludi. Zach can barely hold everyone together with all of their individual problems, and snaps at them to get their act together. Before anyone has the chance to respond, they are caught up with by the robot Gravity from earlier (read: last story), still functional, who attacks them. Knowing that they stand no chance at beating it, they begin to run away. Luna suddenly arrives again and incapacitates it with her guns (albeit not being able to kill it outright), escaping then with the rest of the crew. They all agree to set off for Zorc while she explains her encounter with Ludi earlier (apologizing for almost killing him). She also brings up what had happened a while after - At some point, Ludi had entrusted Revelian with temporary custody of Lodin, a godlike Ludusian monster locked in eternal slumber. He revealed to Luna that he planned to break off from the group and take Lodin back from Revelian's castle, bring it over to Genoskaya, and awaken it, at which point it would unleash devastating amounts of energy, potentially destroying the world and its inhabitants. He believed it was the only way to stop Zorc, and it would be the only vengeance fit for those who have fallen that he cared of (among those, Revelian, Cobalt, and The Mistress, the last of which had died as a result of the living conditions under the Doomers). He chickened out of it and agreed to accompany Luna to help the group in a slightly-more humane manner. Just as the heroes inquire as to where he is, he shows up, more composed than before, and leads them to Zorc's fortress.

Zorc reveals himself and engages in battle with them, not bothering to reveal reason behind his actions or his master plan. Everyone begins losing horribly to his power, with all possible tricks failing - the Revival Rings break after "spawning that freaking tower out of gogbeaverdam nowhere" with too much fervor, any attempts to distract Zorc prove futile, and even though they locate his weakpoint, the supply of stolen souls surrounding him, they have no way to make them dissipate. Luna suddenly surrenders, offering up the soul of her firstborn child to him in exchange for her own life. Zorc is pleased by the offer (appreciating that it is "old-fashioned") and is more than willing to claim the soul of Revelian's child to spare one life that he can later take anyway. During the exchange, the rest of the heroes pay close attention to how the soul exchange works, and then follow Luna's lead to surprise Zorc by attacking, scattering the souls and claiming some of them as well. Now empowered by the vengeful spirits of the dead, the battle continues on an even playing field.

Ludi suddenly sinks to the ground and is abandoned by the souls surrounding him, in addition to most of his Inner Beings and the remnants of Revelian within him. Zorc reclaims all of them, granting him enough power to begin overpowering everyone. One last strike from Zach frees a different soul, more distinguished from the others by appearance, which inhabits Ludi. Fitted with only the spirit of Cut and the mystery soul, he suddenly accuses Zorc of "killing her" and goes into a frenzy, ultimately ending in Cut expelling himself from Ludi's body and taking Zorc's soul into another dimension, the Gray Zone. The souls scatter wildly, attempting to find their bodies from which they had been whisked away from, as Zorc's body inexplicably continues to laugh for a period of time after his death. Chipper, who apparently had a soul, happily reunites with Samuel, and he agrees to have someone make a new vessel for him. Ludi becomes recomposed with all of his Inner Beings, and the mystery soul leaves him before taking on a slightly-more corporeal form: Cobalt.

Ludi and Cobalt briefly converse, during which the former becomes incredibly flustered and nervous, breaking down into tears halfway through. Cobalt attempts to get him to stop by bringing up their past, reminiscing about the moments they had spent together. Ludi eventually composes enough to stop crying and stands up, still evidently distraught. He claims that she is not real, to which she protests, but he persists. He begins recalling all of the events that had taken place after her disappearance, and how long he had spent desperately searching for any trace of her, and firmly states that the "real" Cobalt's soul would be long gone. Cobalt shakes her head, saying that he had changed too much for her, and that she hoped she would find better in the afterlife. She effectively divorces him, saying goodbye, to which Ludi replies "Goodbye, Zorc". Her soul dissipates as Zorc's corpse turns to ash.

About a week later, everything is mostly restored to normal. It is revealed that all of the souls managed to find their way back to their respective bodies with varying degrees of success, given the condition of said bodies prior to death or soul-removal. Revelian, now with both of his souls back into place, is revived, and the group intends to visit him soon. Everyone held a funeral for the Mistress, and Elizabeth and Foszi vow to fight back against the Doomer menace in her honor. Lazro and Iala appear to have some sort of unconventional relationship dynamic, and Iala intends to return to Genoskaya to fight off the Doomers with her sister for a while. Shane offers to take Ludi in for some time for him to recover from the events. He also questions what happened with the last High General, Nigredo, who never showed up at any point. Ludi claimed that he was most likely a coward, escaping after Zorc's death to avoid being charged with any of the events that had taken place. Back at Shane's castle, Ludi stares into the mirror angrily, then has a brief conversation with a new Inner Being he had acquired - Dexter, a former Serrangio freedom-fighter who had pledged himself to Zorc as one of his High Generals, taking on the name of Nigredo. Dexter taunts Ludi, telling him that "Zorc will live on" and that everything that had happened would stay with him forever.

The story ends with a flashback of a younger Ludi going on a raid with Cobalt, claiming a glass pear as a victory prize. As they leave, the two lay down under the night sky, with Cobalt explaining some traditions of gridmask culture - poorly and improperly, as to mess with him. Through a mock-proposal that was primarily a joke on her end, she asks him to marry her, to which he adamantly agrees. A bit shocked by his answer, she decides to give their relationship a legitimate shot before determining if she truly wanted to stay with him.

Ludi wakes up, having dreamt of the scene from earlier, and tosses his ring into a pit of molten metal.

Weaponry

The weapons attained and used during this story are as follows:

Zachary

  • PSI Freeze: Known at the start of the story, dealing damage to one enemy and potentially freezing them in place and rendering them incapable of physical action. Tends to not work on enemies with Ice or Freeze resistances. First appeared in Trix: Adventures of a UFO.
  • PSI Fire: Known at the start of the story. Deals damage to all enemies on the field, with elemental weaknesses and resistances factored in. First appeared in Trix: Adventures of a UFO.
  • Heirloom Sword: Owned at the start of the story. Deals physical damage to one enemy, sometimes dealing two-through-five-slash combos, dealing two-through-five-times the damage. First appeared in The Kuipter Files: FINALE!.
  • Genoskayan Teppesse: Owned at the start of the story. An odd-looking cross-shaped stabbing blade wielded by Genoskayan TSTR warriors. Acts as a slightly stronger and slower Heirloom Sword, though capable of dealing two-through-twelve-slash combos, dealing two-through-twelve-times the damage. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
  • PK ???: Owned at the start of the story. A move known as "PK Love" that deals massive damage driven from something or someone that the user admires. Damages all enemies on the screen. Only used once in the final battle against Zorc. As the subject of this admiration was Luna, Zach has since stopped using the move as he is now in a relationship with someone else. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
  • Beia Crash: A move that charges the Genoskayan Teppesse with gravity powers, making the next attack with it deal extra damage as well as potentially immobilize the enemy. Gained after the fight with Varbolt.

Lazro

  • HAIRPIN: Owned at the start of the story. A standard HAIRPIN, capable of transforming into random objects containing any of the letters H, A, I, R, P, or N. Completely unpredictable. First appeared in Trix: Adventures of a UFO.
  • RING OF KEYS: Owned at the start of the story. Each of the twelve KEYS transforms into a random GUN or FARM ANIMAL every battle, and throughout the battle, each KEY may be used once. The standalone KEY first appears in Trix 2: The War.
  • Dual Flame Katanas: Owned at the start of the story. Deals two-times physical damage to one enemy by slashing or one-time fire/magical damage to one enemy in the form of a projectile attack. First appeared in Dr. Sand: Twisted Fates.
  • IRONGLOW KEY: Transforms into a random GUN or FARM ANIMAL, though all of the morphs are tipped in favor of the user. (Popguns would be infused with napalm, cows would be able to fire laser beams, etc.) Broke during when the HAIRPIN backfired and destroyed it. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
  • Charge Sais: Deals two-times physical damage to one enemy by slashing or can charge up, enabling the next attack to deal four-times physical and fire damage to one enemy. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
  • Darkcharge Sais: Upgrade of Charge Sais. After a shadow creature attached to the Charge Sais, the weapons gained extra attack damage and shadow resistance. Was later destroyed when the shadow creature ate the Charge Sais and then jumped off a cliff.
  • HEADBAND: Thinkatock's HEADBAND, which functions similarly to a HAIRPIN, though with incredibly powerful morphs. Miraculously gained after the fight with Nigredo. Later returned to the original owner.

Samuel

  • Boxing Gloves: Owned at the start of the story. Deals a speedy punch to an enemy, occasionally attacking two or three times and dealing that much more damage. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
  • Ice Naginata: Owned at the start of the story. Can be used to swipe at an enemy for physical damage or shoot an ice bolt for ice damage. First appeared in Dr. Sand: Twisted Fates.
  • Fire Charge: Owned at the start of the story. Charges the Ice Naginata with fire, making its next attack deal additional damage. This may either change the element type to fire, add fire damage to the weapon, or erase all elemental affinities attached to the weapon. First appeared in Corruption: He Comes.
  • Berserk Mode: Owned at the start of the story. Doubles attacking power, but can only be used at health below one-third. It may sometimes be used from the start through some means, but this is rare. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
  • Red Thinder: Owned at the start of the story. Harnesses the blessing of Thondor and casts down crimson lightning on all opponents. Learned after the battle with the Grand Doomer. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
  • Violet Revival Ring: Found prior to the battle with Outhiterous, as the counterpart to Ludicrine's Red Revival Ring. Charges passively with each strike with Samuel's Boxing Gloves. When connected to the Red Revival Ring, grows a large tower from the ground, dealing damage and having more floors in regards to the charge level. Used for heavy physical damage and plot elements, and later destroyed after receiving too much charge in the battle against Zorc.
  • Voodoo Blade: A weapon capable of slight psychic manipulation, wielded by and later and taken from High General Varbolt. Deals dark and physical damage, occasionally driving enemies into a state of temporary trance. Was kept in inventory in favor of the OKTE-Push afterwards, and has not been seen since.
  • OKTE-Push: An octagonal sword similar in nature to Revelian's OKTE-Gone that sends enemies into The OKTE and back in quick succession, leaving them to be mentally scarred and often resorting to fleeing or committing suicide.

Iala

  • Sawbec: Owned at the start of the story. A semi-organic gun with nature and dark properties that fires explosive projectiles, dealing possible splash damage to nearby enemies. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
  • V3 Vexation: Owned at the start of the story. A V-Prototype gun that fires a collection of energy-based waves at once. Pierces through all armor and defenses and has no elemental attachment. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
  • Superball Gun: Owned at the start of the story. A gun that fires erratic bullets that can hit multiple targets and cause the field to be altered. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
  • V4 Hellbender: A V-Prototype gun that fires a heavy canister that explodes and deals damage to multiple opponents and some allies. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
  • Black Hole Generator: A gun that tears a rift in space and rids the field of enemies below a certain health percentage. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
  • Shoulder Sling: Owned at the start of the story, from a time period between Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya and the start of the adventure. An energy-based railgun kept connected to a handy battery pack. Effectively replaces the V3 Vexation, but is discarded when it runs out of energy. Pierces through all forms of armor, defenses, and buffs, generally dealing light-type or physical-type damage interchangeably.
  • Grapple Cannon: A magnetically-charged weapon capable of incapacitating the largest of targets with ease. Used exclusively during the battles with Juggernaut Gravity and Zorc and found prior to the fight with the prior.
  • Sawbec Shot: A semi-organic gun with nature and dark properties that fires multiple explosive projectiles, dealing damage to up to three enemies and splash damage to many more. It is essentially an upgrade of the Sawbec.

Ludicrine

  • Slash: Known at the start of the story. Uses the equipped anchor to cut at an opponent.
    • When Trance is equipped, Slash may "corrupt" some enemies, giving them unpredictable side effects. It deals dark and chaos damage and can be used against targets at long-range by firing off its end.
    • When Dae is equipped, Slash deals dark and chaos damage and may inflict water damage if the enemy has no resistances to it. The attack may, at random, attack multiple enemies, backfire, or latch on to an enemy for multiple turns.
    • When Regulus is equipped, the weapon deals physical damage and may inflict water damage if the enemy has no resistances to it.
  • Trance/Dae/Regulus: Owned at the start of the story. Changes between any of the three anchors.
    • Trance: An anchor made with black space fabric, the broken will of mortals, and steel. Has the ability to corrupt the atmosphere around it and can fire off its arrow-like end. Will always deal dark and chaos damage regardless of resistances. First appeared in Cuts Internal: The Return to Genoskaya.
    • Dae: A strange anchor resembling the bones of a fish-like creature, with the anchor ends acting as a bulbed scissor. Tends to act on its own free will, as it is the seal of Daekush the Apocalyptic Animal. Attached to a chain. Will always deal dark and chaos damage regardless of resistances, though it also deals non-strict water-type damage.
    • Regulus: A generic anchor. Made of steel and attached to a rope. Deals Water-type damage, though not strictly. First appeared in Trix 2: The War.
  • Grand Hex: Known at the start of the story. A move that conjures three hexes that fire three swirling bolts each. Deals high damage should all three bolts hit. Deals light damage and may stun opponents or allies. Temporary upgrade to Aura Bolt. Forgotten after Ludicrine's stability.
  • Mage Thunder: Known at the start of the story. A thunder and dark move that has a chance of either damaging all enemies or taking up no action skills. Temporary upgrade to PSI Thunder. Forgotten after Ludicrine's stability.
  • Enraged Mode: Known at the start of the story. Causes Ludicrine to deal additional damage for a time, occasionally attacking teammates. Forgotten after Ludicrine's stability.
  • Red Revival Ring: Found prior to the battle with Outhiterous, as the counterpart to Samuel's Violet Revival Ring. Charges passively with each strike with Ludicrine's Dae anchor. When connected to the Violet Revival Ring, grows a large tower from the ground, dealing damage and having more floors in regards to the charge level. Used for heavy physical damage and plot elements, and later destroyed after receiving too much charge in the battle against Zorc.
  • Anchor Skill: Known at the start of the story. Activates a certain skill depending on the equipped anchor.
    • When Trance is equipped, a rift to the Gray Zone will briefly appear, releasing Tenebrae gas and horribly damaging/killing certain enemies. This attack bypasses all defensive skills, items, etc.
    • When Dae is equipped, the anchor is thrown and begins to attack targets on its own, acting as a multiple-turn familiar rather than a weapon. Many attacks tend to deal dark, chaos, and/or physical damage, with enemies often being poisoned or fleeing battle.
    • When Regulus is equipped, the anchor is swung in place rapidly similarly to a windmill and may be used as a damaging shield against melee moves or may be launched one turn after for heavy physical damage.

Shane

  • Tomato Storm: Known at the start of the story. A "gag attack" that rains tomatoes upon a group of enemies, usually only enraging them and dealing no damage. Used only while intoxicated. First appeared in Absolutely Nothing: Ludicrine's Inactivity and Beyond.
  • Hat Planet: Known at the start of the story. A passive "gag equip" in the form of a cat-faced hat that obscures the vision of opponents slightly, reducing their accuracy. Used only while intoxicated.
  • Poison Mushroom: Known at the start of the story. A bag of toxic fungi that remove all buffs from an opponent via physical contact. Can only be used a few times during battle.
  • Cutter Hat: Known at the start of the story. A duck-shaped hat with a curved blade, the latter of which may be wielded as a sword or thrown to deal damage to multiple enemies before returning. May sometimes be charged with thunder powers. Additionally, improves defense slightly, as it is an equipped hat.
  • Anger Halberd: Found within the Tower of Revival. A green, thunder-shaped polearm that can control the calmness or rage of those around the wielder. Deals physical damage and can be used to block some attacks. Additionally, may cause enemies or allies to become enraged or may remove this status effect from either, depending on what is desired.
  • Adderbite: Gained prior to the first battle with Zorc. A snake-like staff that enables the user to experience energy similar to that of an Awakening. Deals physical damage and can be used to block some attacks. Additionally, raises the stats of Shane significantly and occasionally activates random magic effects.

Foszi

Foszi uses a variety of nondescript magic spells throughout the story.

Elizabeth

Elizabeth fights with a variety of blunt weapons throughout the story.

Trivia

  • The story arc was initially supposed to be a trilogy, with the final story ending with "Father's Day", which would take place a long while after most of the other stories had taken place. It would feature Dexter as the major villain and, rather than an action-based story, would mostly be Ludicrine trying to piece together aspects of his past that didn't seem to make sense as well as rid his mind of his problematic newly-awoken Inner Being. It would also focus on Mercedes Sand, the daughter of Dr. Sand, and her accidental revival and adoption at the hands of Ludicrine.

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