Wednesday, January 24, 2007
“Oh yes, here you go.” Airamis said as he dropped the new linkpearl in my hand without even looking up from his clip board. “Welcome to the linkshell.” He said as he took a moment to glace up at me and smile before going back to whatever he was looking over. It seemed a bit odd to me to see a ranger wearing reading glasses but I wasn’t about to say a word but thank you for the pearl and sit down to wait for more instructions. He looked a bit busy.
Naturally since this was my very first dynamis Paganlorre was home sick and we were going to the area known for being the most difficult of all of the cities. Figured. Dynamis-Windhurst was going to be a challenge for a first run but I knew I could tackle it no problem.
“You’re going to be knocked out cold… a lot. We don’t call it Die-in-mass for nothing.” An Elvaan with long slick black hair said as he looked down at me with a mischievous grin. “Don’t worry, we wont leave you there. We’ll patch you up and drag you out in one piece.” I just looked up at him and a worried expression escaped. “You don’t remember me do you?” he asked. I shook my head no and he tilted his head back and laughed. “I’m called Sinlessrogue. Let me know if you need any help.” I think I did recall an incident in Lower Jeuno but before I could give it any more thought I heard them call for me.
“Alison, you’re in my party.” Wheeldog said as he waved to me from across the group.
“That means you jump to your feet and go line up behind him.” Sinlessrogue instructed with a chuckle. I wish I could remember why he would find such delight in teasing me but I didn’t have time to worry about it. I didn’t want to hold up the group.
Wheeldog was much more optimistic and helpful. He gave me a run down of how it would go. “I am in charge of leading us melee fighters to the immediate target. Just keep assisting me when I call for it. Never attack on your own even if something swings at you first. Stay focused and listen the instructions on linkshell chat and you’ll do fine.” He instructed with a soft smile. He did really make me feel good about it. I had heard really bad things about end game linkshells being not so fun and full of arrogant mean people but Wheeldog was very warm and helpful.
I was a bit concerned when I realized I was in an alliance with Airamis and all the other big dogs of the linkshell including Sinlessrouge who seemed to be delighted to play on my apprehensions. I was sure Airamis was watching and waiting for me to mess up horribly so he could boot me out. I was not about to give them a reason.
“Trading hourglasses.” Airamis called out to us. I was given my own hourglass and used it to enter my first dynamis.
It just looked like regular boring Windhurst until the first group of beastmen came running in a large pack. My eyes grew wide as they approached and I could only hope this was how it was supposed to go. In experience parties I’m expected to bring one target at a time back to my group. This certainly was not one beastman.
“Attacking Vanguard Liberator. Melee, assist me!” Wheeldog shouted out. Clutching my daggers tightly I ran to attack with him. This was not a small linkshell. Counting nearly fifty people here did bring a sense of security but I found myself struggling to get my hits in without nicking one of my comrades by mistake.
They just kept coming and coming as fast as I could move from one beast to the next. Beads of sweat formed on my brow and adrenaline pumped through my blood. This moved crazy fast. I had to pause on occasion to wipe off the beastmen’s blood that dripped down onto the hilt of my dagger to keep them from getting too slippery.
In the zone I almost didn’t notice when Airamis called out my name. “Alison, lot on the bonnet.” I did as instructed and went back to killing. The group got really excited and congratulated me on my incredible good luck. I was a little confused. I thought that was the point of coming here was for special items.
“Wow an artifact hat drop for you on your very first run. Congratulations.” Gainsborough said. “Is that unusual then?” I paused to look at him. He grinned, “Yeah it is. Some people wait months to get theirs. It’s a big deal.” He laughed and went back to work. I shrugged shyly and looked my new hat over. I couldn’t use it for another five levels but I was very pretty and looked like it would come in handy. Smiling and thanking the group and put it away to keep from staining it before I even got to use it properly.
Continuing like this for awhile we didn’t seem to have any major problems. We even managed to pass the “death house” without attracting unwanted attention. Airamis had us walk slowly single file along the opposite wall away from the death house as the called it without even a wrong sideways step or even a hard look in the direction of the building in question. My nerves causes me to reached out and clutched Gainsborough’s robe at one point without even thinking about it but he just looked back and smiled at me.
It was all fun and games and I was feeling pretty confident that I had the swing of things but when people started dropping around me in large numbers I became a bit concerned. Worried chatter started to bounce around the group. “Stay focused and keep fighting.” Airamis instructed. I did just that but it wasn’t long before I took a hard blow and was knocked down too.
We all lay in the dirt. Mounds of us moaning, some of them laughing like men gone insane, but all of us down for the count. Once the beastmen wandered off to celebrate their vengeful victory the mages who keep reraise spells on themselves at all times began to raise us up too. “Death number one.” Sinlessrogue whispered to me. “Congratulations you are now nearly broken in.”
I fought till the end and with my evasion skills and ability to not attract much hate from the beastmen I was one of the very last down. It brought a sense of pride that I did pretty well under pressure even if the beastmen won that round.
We did have one last thing to do before we were finished for the night. The mega-boss had to be taken care of if I was to get credit for clearing this area so I could move on to the bigger ones in the future. Ironically this would be the easiest part of the run for me.
“Whatever you do, don’t look at it or it will doom you to death.” Airamis warned us. All melee faced east as the ground shook to announce the coming of the mega-boss. This was for the mages to handle. The most squishy and fragile had the responsibility of defeating the most powerful advisory in the entire area. Go figure. They stood to the front of the group and with their combined efforts nuked the life out of it in a surprisingly short amount of time.
Once it was down I turned to get a good look at it. Huge as it was it just looked like a great bird statue. I examined the place where it had fallen and that was it. I had what I needed from it without so much as glancing it’s direction. Again, I thanked the linkshell for helping me with my first dynamis. They were all so friendly it made it easy to enjoy myself and feel confident.
All and all not a bad experience. Yeah, Sinlessrouge was right. I have died many many times doing these but I have also collected some very lovely new articles of clothing and one ugly rusty looking dagger and I do adore cute clothes above almost anything else. And of course there is the fun. I do love to go out with Digital Back Spin and kick butt on a weekly basis. It’s a bonding thing. There have been some ups and downs but I think I’ll tell about those another day.