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The A.R.C Chronicles: IN SEAS OF BURNT SAND Chapter 1: The Scorched Lord Beckons “RRROOOOOAAAAAARRRRRRWWWWLLLLLL” comes a satanic call, vaguely similar to a sabre-tooth, echoing off of unseen walls. Aris opened his eyes, only to find himself standing in the exit of a cave. The cave itself exited into a wide ravine with ancient ruins clinging to it’s side and in its centre were the remains of monolithic columns that once held up, what would have been, a vast ceiling. Atop one of the few remaining columns, that was still completely intact, stood a malignant beast; the heat blurring out its features. It stood there staring, issuing a silent challenge, a dare to come and take its kingdom. “RRRRROOOOOOAAAAAAARRRRRRRRWWWWWWWLLLLLLLL” declared the beast again, and the image sharpened. Aris could make out the head of a lion, with a black mane, a horn protruding from each side of it’s head. It had the body of a lion too, but it had mighty black, leathery wings, and the tail of a scorpion. Alas its eyes kept drawing his sight back to its face, they were pure yellow and is pupils were like that of a snakes. A strong presentiment of fear over came him when ever he looked in them, a fear the likes of which he hadn’t felt in a long long time. He hadn’t felt such fear when he faced the ultimate lifeforms, the tyrannical lords of the so called “ARK’s”: The Broodmother, Megapithicus, and the mighty Dragon. They were all the size of a fully grown bull brontosaurus and bigger; in the dragons case, it was almost as tall as the monolithic Titanosaur. He had faced them all by himself, yet he had had help from The Beast when fighting them all. It was Aris and The Beast that the creatures of all the ARK’s now bowed before and they ruled peacefully. The only creatures that didn’t obey them were the pesky humans, of whom had named the “ARK’s” “ARK’s”… “RRRROOOOAAAAARRRRWWWWLLLL” beckoned the creature again, as it landed with an earth shaking thud in front of him. “Walk through that cave,” it said a deep, hoarse and slurred voice, “go and see what challenges what the Scorched Lord’s kingdom holds…” it uttered, “Go and see what awaits you in my Seas of Burnt Sand” His fear increase ten fold; none of the other ultimate lifeforms had the gift of speech ir at least hadn't displayed the ability before he had torn their throats out! () Aris turned around and walked through the cave, after a few steps everything went dark. Looking behind him, he discovered that the cave entrance had disappeared, so he continued on. After a few minutes of walking in the near pitch blackness, a bright, warm light appeared a few metres ahead. Once his eyes had adjusted, he noticed the caves entrance and three large eggs in a nest near it. One was green, one was red and the other blue, as he got closer to them he hud a thud echo from the cave entrance. He looked up and saw a large reptilian head peer over the top of the caves entrance, the mother had returned… It crawled along the walls into the cave and Aris looked at it. It resembled the great Dragon, but it was much smaller and its wings were a part of its front arms. “Ggggraaawwwlll” the dragon challenged, as it opened its mouth and he saw fire springing from its lips. Aris threw up his arms and felt heat as hot as the sun, yet he didn’t die. He cautiously opened his eyes and lowered his arms; he was surround by a vast and infinite expanse of sand dunes and was being baked alive in the suns excruciating heat. A name sprang to his mind… “The Seas of Burnt Sand” he uttered with fear and contempt, “I WILL CONQUER YOU” he yelled in defiance; and the world faded… …Aris burst upright from his nightmare, for that is what it was. He had been challenged by the Scorched Lord, a challenge that he couldn’t refuse.