New Hero: Albon Roa, of the OrderJune 24, 2019
The Shadowlands and its secrets threaten us all. The Solist Order will confront this corruption with blinding light and blessèd steel. Will you stand with us?
Across the land, the call was heard. Soldiers saddled their mounts, and warriors honed their weapons.
The Knights of the Order would ride out, and meet the coming darkness head-on.
The setting sun glowed warm on the towers of the Citadel of Light as Albon approached. Halting, he pulled a canteen from his rucksack and drank deeply. The road through the hills that surrounded the Solist redoubt had been busy and choked with dust. Albon was young, with a smooth face and short-cropped hair, but he held himself with the poise of an old soldier. Besides the small pack on his back, his only possession was the rapier at his hip, its basket hilt shining against a blue silk sash.
“Aye,” Albon nodded, looking past the gate’s heavy bars to the buildings beyond. In the distance, a bell rang, marking the last light of the day.
“What’s your business here?” The guard asked.
Albon turned to face the man. “I wish to join the Knights of the Order.”
The guard snorted, “You?” He shook his head. “Where are you from?”
“Najarno.” Albon replied proudly.
“Should’ve guessed by the accent,” the guard chuckled. The dog barked in agreement. “Listen, kid. The Knights are veterans. Paladins and soldiers who can march in heavy gear for hours on end and still be ready to fight. That’s no place for,” the guard gestured, “someone like you.”
Albon’s eyes hardened, and his jaw set. Before the guard could draw his weapon, Albon’s rapier was in his hand. With a flick of his wrist, the silver blade blurred. “Oi!” the guard shouted, but the sword was already back in its sheath. Albon held out a gloved hand, and dropped six severed links of chain on the ground.
The guard looked down at the remains of the leash in his hand, and his mouth fell open. Beside him, the mastiff whined.
In the same steady tone, Albon said, “My name is Albon Roa, of the Principality of Najarno, and I will be a Knight of the Order.”
“No. Absolutely not,” the master-at-arms said. It was a week later. Albon had been given meals and a small dormitory, as was custom for visitors to the Citadel. Solists knights and other hopefuls had filtered in, until today. Today their training began.
“Look at you,” the older man continued, “barely any armor! And no helmet to muss those lovely locks… y’at least need a shield?”
“No,” Albon replied, shrugging. “I do not require either.”
“What’s this about?” a hard voice demanded as the master-at-arms spluttered, red-faced. A tall woman in emerald armor stood in the courtyard’s entrance. Her yellow hair was bound in a tight braid, and Albon saw a heavy sword and a shield on her back. A murmur went through the assembly as she strode to the center of the courtyard. This was one of Genetrix Irel’s personal bodyguards.
“Ehm, Lady Reyna,” the older man began, stumbling over his words.
“I am here to join the Knights of the Order,” Albon seized his opportunity and called in a clear voice. “My name is Albon Roa.”
“Well, segnoro Roa,” Reyna said, her mouth turned up at one corner as she eyed him. “The master-at-arms has a point. We ride for a land infested with nightmare, and you refuse our armor. I don’t want your death on our hands.” She crossed her arms. “Why should I allow you to fight at our side?”
Albon’s hand tightened on the hilt of his rapier. “The Genetrix said the Shadow threatens us all. I am good with a blade, and I will use it to defend my home. And I do not need armor if no one can touch me.”
There was laughter from a few of the knights, but Reyna frowned. “We’ll see if you’re still as cocky after training.” As Albon’s expression broke into a smile, she pointed a finger at him, “You’re not a Knight yet. Not ‘til Irel herself blesses you. Remember that.”
The next morning—before the first light of dawn—they climbed high into the rocky hills behind the Citadel.
The gathered knights groaned, and an armored man next to Albon dug his elbow into the duelist’s side, muttering, “Better not slip, kid.”
Albon looked up to see Reyna at the head of the column, watching him. Gritting his teeth, Albon shouldered his heavy pack and kept moving.
They spent four days in the hills. Every day, they marched along rocky ridges, enduring the worst of the weather. Each night, as they collapsed onto their bedrolls, Reyna would wake them up, shouting: “Weapons ready! Sol’s light does not pierce the Shadowlands, so you better learn how to close ranks at night!”
By the fourth night, Albon had had enough. Squaring his shoulders, he breathed a word, and golden sunlight began to pour from the blade of his rapier. “We don’t just fight together, we move together,” Albon called out. “Sol’s light guides our blades. Together, we will never fight in the dark.”
“You have all fought hard…”
It was months later. After the mountains, the Knights had plunged into the Archives that filled the hollow hills around the Citadel. The Solist Order had preserved many relics, and bound away many horrors, and the Knights learned from both. Now, they stood in a gleaming line that stretched across Citadel’s courtyard. Reyna paced in front of them, her sword in-hand.
“… and you have all fought together. Tomorrow morning, you will bring Sol’s light to the Shadowlands. But first…” Reyna pointed with her sword. “Roa.”
Albon stepped forward and faced the paladin expectantly.
“You have proven that you can survive in the wilds, face darkness without fear, and you have impressed your peers,” Reyna said.
“Aye!” The knights behind him cheered. Albon smiled.
“They consider you a comrade-in-arms. But their truth is not the only truth that matters,” Reyna said, pointing upwards. Albon’s gaze followed. Genetrix Irel stood on a balcony above them, hands resting on her cane, her expression clouded.
“You must impress the Genetrix,” Reyna said, pulling her bronze shield off her back, “like every Knight before you. And if you wish to fight with us, there is one other person you must convince.” Reyna set the tall shield in front of her. “Me.”
“Why?” Albon asked through clenched teeth, his arms burning with sudden exertion. Past Reyna, he saw his fellow knights move to form a ring of armor and shields around them.
“Sometimes you can’t run, dodge, or be clever,” Reyna grunted. “Sometimes it comes down to just you and your steel. I need to know that you won’t break.” Whirling, she slammed her shield into Albon’s side. Pain flared. Albon did his best to roll with the blow, and pushed himself to his feet, laughing.
Reyna frowned, “What’s so funny?”
Albon smiled and picked up his rapier. “I have been dueling to protect Najarno for years. While other children snuck into orchards or studied art in the plaza, I drilled with a blade. This,” he twirled the sword, cutting a figure-eight pattern through the air, “this is what I do.”
Reyna bared her teeth and charged again. Slashing the air in front of him, Albon sent a shower of sparks at her. They crawled across her armor, but Reyna kept coming. Albon dodged to the side, and her downward blow shattered the flagstone where he had stood.
Albon’s counterattack skated off her armor, and Reyna laughed, forcing him back with another heavy swing. But instead of slowing, Albon rolled forward, sliding beneath her slash, silver rapier in his hand.
“Not quick enough,” Reyna grunted, and Albon saw her shield surge towards him like a battering ram. Not creative enough, Albon thought. Dueling was as much about creativity as it was stamina. Try the same attack twice and you were predictable. Albon Roa leapt. In the air, he twisted, blue sash trailing behind him. Albon felt the shield cut through the air beneath him, and felt his boot connect with Reyna’s jaw. The paladin stumbled, off balance, and swung her sword in a wide arc to keep Albon at bay. Instead of dodging, Albon caught the edge of Reyna’s blade with the basket hilt of his rapier and twisted.
As Reyna’s sword clattered to the ground, Albon heard another noise. Up on her balcony, Genetrix Irel applauded. As the other Knights of the Order rushed forward, cheering, Albon saw Reyna gingerly touch her split lip, look up at him, and nod.
The Knights of the Order stood at the edge of the wasteland. A curtain of Shadow hung a half-mile in front of them, a dark scar across the sand. The Knights were mounted, and Albon Roa sat astride a silver-grey courser near the head of the company, his armor polished to a mirror shine.
Genetrix Irel IV stood before them. In a clear voice, she addressed them all:
“I have seen a coming danger, and I know what lies in the deepest Shadow: Nightmare and consuming darkness.”
Irel’s words rose, echoing across the barren dirt. “If you take one truth with you today, know this: you are ready.”
Albon felt pride stir in his chest. She was right, he could feel it.
Raising a hand, Irel smiled. “May Sol light your way, and burn through the lies of this dark place.”
There was a shout, and the first of the knights began to trot forward. Albon nudged his horse to follow, and the knights began to charge, their mounts’ hoofbeats shaking the earth beneath them. As one, The Knights of the Order drew their weapons. Wind whipped through his hair, and Albon heard someone behind him bellow. He felt himself echoing the battle cry.
Together, the Knights of the Order charged forward into the veil of darkness.
Albon Roa, of the Order Promo Quest
- The Albon Roa, of the Order promo quest begins today and will run until Sunday, June 30.
- During the quest period, your first PvP win of the day will reward you with a copy of Albon Roa.
- Once the promo period is over, you’ll be able to craft Albon Roa using Shiftstone as normal.
- The Albon Roa, of the Order premium Avatar will be available in the store for 300 Gems for a limited time.
Read more Eternal lore here!