We had a total of 7 entries from the Chesapeake shard. The entries were so well done that we had an even amount of votes for some of them and ended up having a 3 way tie!
Here are the 7 winning entries from Chesapeake:
Maestro’s Journal – Fall 329 – Haven
After a rough week things are improving. I am returning to town bloody but alive and with loot. This is due to my skills improving but also due to Malloc. I agreed to help him acquire the materials and money needed to advance in his crafting skills; and in return he will improve my armor and weapons. This seems to be the start of a very lucrative partnership. There is just the minor problem of the cost involved in helping him advance. Just when I think we are getting ahead the money is gone. Worse is that we are sharing a room at the inn. I can only afford small room and putting two people into it with armor and crafting tools/materials is just insane.
Out of nowhere a female mage appeared before me. Startled I grab and begin to draw my sword. She is well dressed and moves with a grace unlike the common mages seen in Haven. Her eyes hold a fire that rages yet is controlled. I easy my sword back into the scabbard. I would be dead before two steps if I made a move at her.
She nods her head and speaks to me. “Maestro, are you new in Haven?”
How did she know my name but it matters not her voice is enchanting. “Aye, milady mage. I have been here a few days.”
Again she nods and commands “You are the one, follow me.”
I must have blinked and missed what she did but she was gone and a blue shimmering gate appeared. Thinking back to my last experience with such a gate, I was glad that it was blue. Red gates seem to lead to instant death. Without thinking I entered the gate. Blinding light and a fleeting moment of prickling pain and I see a small sandstone house next to a well-worn road in a forest. The mage is standing next to the house in a trance.
In a booming voice she announces “As was done for me, I freely do for another. As I was given, so shall I give. My word is my bond and my bond is my honor… Maestro this house is yours.”
I felt the weight of ownership push me to my knees and bow my head. It was all I could do to mumble “Thank you kindly milady… I shall honor you vow as if it were mine…”
She gently touched my head and was gone slipping through the closing gate.
Darkness… Darkness? The sounds of the forest fill my ears. I dash into the house and secure the door. Much bigger than at the inn and there is more upstairs. The roof would be perfect for Malloc and his tools. Where is Malloc? He’s at Haven and I’m… I’m… In a house in a forest next to a well-worn road… somewhere in Britannia. I laughed but knew I was home where ever that is.
I could hear the waves slapping up against the boat as the sea was roaring fierce with the Pink Ranger Army approaching. The Britannia Mage Tower Army stood on the island in a stance ready for war. Everyone was silent, so all you could hear was the ocean and boats that surrounded the island. The Dark Evil Leader of the Pink Ranger Army appeared in the middle of the island with her all power magics. Our Snooky look-a-like leader, Lord Gareth, chuckled and asked, “You dare to come alone?”
Mesanna’s evil laughter struck chills straight through me. “Oh how I love the sound of people dying,” was her response as she started to summon her Pink Ranger Army from the seas. Before Lord Gareth and his army knew it, the island was covered in sea creatures of all sorts! It was a grand battle fought between the two armies. I could hear the clanking of swords against scales. I could smell the singed skin and hair as fire was being thrown between the opposing sides. There were tortuous screams as people were being consumed by these horrendous sea monsters.
I attempted to be brave with the Britannia Mage Tower Army at first, but I found myself hiding on the boat we sailed in on before long. After all, I was just the janitor. As I hid in safety on deck, I could see Lord Gareth battling on the edge of the island trying veer off any more sea creatures trying to reach his army. Suddenly I saw a giant fish as big as I had ever seen in all my life making its way towards the island. It was almost as if the other sea monsters purposely moved to make a path for this giant fish. Out of nowhere, it jumped up and in one swift motion, Lord Gareth had disappeared before my very eyes. What that fish hadn’t counted on was it landed on land. Before it even had a chance to start flopping around, Lieutenant General, Lady Tigerlily called for everyone to attack the fish.
In disbelief that this would be the fate of our Snooky look-a-like-leader, Lord Gareth, I knew the Pink Ranger Army had won this battle. This may sound like a huge fish tale, but if you don’t believe me, I have the fish that ate Gareth’s remains mounted on my wall to prove it!
Sitting at my desk I allow my mind to wander back to times that were simple and unfettered. We gathered as friends and fellow travelers through an untamed land. The beasts were fearsome and the people true. Those who wandered did well to travel with friends for safety.
The local gathering point was at the bank or the smithy. I remember standing at the bank chatting with friends I had never met and sewing til my fingers bled. The tailor guildmaster was a hard woman to please but I tried my best to please her. It was soon that I discovered that my skill far outdid my resources. I was forced to move to a town that had more of the raw materials I required to further my talents.
A small island town mainly geared for mages was named Moonglow. I chose there to set up my small table in order to peddle wares and assist in repairs to other travelers. When my inventory was depleted I would brave the wild wilderness in search for cotton and sheep to sheer, or bulls to slaughter for their hides and meat. The land was untamed and wild allowing animals to wander free.
I remember a time when I was forced to gather materials and chose the local cotton field. The only reason it was even remotely memorable was due to the fact that the cotton did not grow in organized rows but popped up randomly all over the place. I spent the afternoon jumping from one place to harvesting cotton from one plant just to have another appear on the other side of the field. It must have been a humorous sight for very soon I gathered a bit of an audience watching as I scampered across the field until I was so over loaded I could no longer move.
The other thing I remember quite clearly was the first place I called home. Several guildmates would sit at houses waiting for them to tumble from neglect. When a house would fall they would place their flag claiming the area for theirs in order to return later and build.
One such home was a very small one room abode tucked in the middle of a deep wood. The home was presented to me as a gift and I accepted gratefully. I started to decorate immediately making it feel homey and comfortable. Leaving the home for some brief errands I locked the door behind me.
When I returned to my new home I found the door had been jimmied and I had interrupted an invasion. The large gargoyle that was trying to reclaim my home took one look at me and went into a fury. One wild ferocious flash of light and the next thing I remember was waking up staring at the ceiling. The smoldering floorboards around me gave my lovely new home “character”. I had found myself in the Gargoyle Neighborhood!
I look back through the years and think of my first adventure. I had spent some time wandering the lands of trammel with my flock of sheep, but because of my youth I was always protected in my travels. As I grew older and stronger, the guards decided I was safe enough without their help.
I remember wanting to see the land of Illshenar and the treasure it held. My first trip there was through the gate of Valor.
The woods were beautiful but I began to grow worried as I saw the piles of bones and blood stained grass. I crossed a bridge that led over a small river and that is when I saw a truly majestic being, a dragon! I was still in the trees near the river bank and the beast had yet to notice me. I thought back to what I knew about dragons; Books say that they can be good, evil, and sometimes both at the same time. All of my experience thus far with dragons had come from my time in Haven. Gentle giants that you could walk up to and admire and pet!
Remembering the gentleness of previous dragon encounters I walked out of the trees and stood next to the red dragon. “You are so beautiful” I said as I reached out to stroke its neck. Suddenly everything went gray and I was staring at my chard remains. That day I learned a very important lesson: DO NOT PET A WILD DRAGON!!!!!!
As a young adventurer, no memory can compare to the days with my steed crossing the majestic land of Britannia. Many nights spent out in the forest, falling asleep to the sound of wisps while I lying upon my bedroll in the mist of twilight. And mornings, waking up to the smell of burnt kindling and magpie’s chirping. I was never certain of what I would encounter next, but that is just half the excitement.
I remember my time spent at a guard post on my way to Yew; I met several noble men honing their skills in Archery while the ocean waves crashed against the shore. These men greeted me with cheerful faces and several ales, and then decided that my skills with a sword should be put to the test. I am glad they did, as it was not only nefarious murderers that would seek not only my loot, but terrifying monsters seeking blood.
During this endeavor, the most memorable moment was when I stumbled across Relvinian’s greatest creation on my way from Skara Brae to Britain: the Hedge Maze. I have never seen anything so glorious, but yet, so dangerous. This labyrinth was not for the weak at heart, but for those with courage and charisma, it is worth the exploration. Passing through the hedges and stumbling across beautiful fountains and gardens, to my dismay, I found the laboratory nested at the center – and it was heavily guarded by daemons.
Fear shook my bones in fear as I raised my sword. A daemon approached me while shouting words of power. The techniques I learned at the guard post came in handy: I evaded the deamon’s attacks and managed a swift blow to defeat the creature. His corpse held loot of gems and gold was beyond my wildest imagination. I knew that if I could continue slaying these beasts, enough funds could be raised enough to reach my goal of purchasing a home. So, I spent many days and nights, slaying this spawn from the abyss and saving my gold pieces.
The faithful day came; I earned enough money to buy a deed to a stone house. I always dreamed the time when I could settle down after a long adventure up to the hearth of a fireplace in my home by the beach. So that is exactly where I went, to the beach beyond the Britain moon gate and across the bridge to claim my piece of Britannia. Whether it is a long journey across this great land, or hunting daemons at the hedge maze, nothing is better than coming home and enjoying that ocean view and recollecting the adventures had with yourself and the world around. But, a day does not go by when I think about my first experience when I stumbled across Relvinian’s creation.
My husband started playing UO with a friend of his from work. I wasnt very happy because he wasnt working alot and I was. He spent alot of time on the computer playing. One day he asked me to make a character. He said I could make a tamer and tame alot of pets, so I did. That was the birth of Yoshi. I started taming pets and running all over picking up worthless things to sell until one day I seen him fighting red people. I wanted to fight. So I shed the tamer and started fighting with a kryss. My kids each created a character as well and they were playing right alongside us.
A few years went by and my husband an I got a divorce. It was a funny because our UO game and accounts were listed in our divorce division. I did win both accounts. During the divorce I also got layed off from my job and this caused my home to go into foreclosure. My car was repoed and I had an huge amount of credit card debt he left me with before he moved to Florida. I was sinking further into depression and didnt think anything could get worse.
I logged into my account and lo and behold I had been hacked. They had taken everything. I had gotten pretty good at keep very valuable stuff back then. I had 3 accounts by then and the houses were filled. They deleted characters and left each of the remaining characters bare and naked. I was frantic. I called UO and after alot of time they did provide me with the IP address. I contacted the State Police and they came and looked at my computer and later came back and took it for 2 weeks. When they returned it everything was wiped off my computer. He said there was nothing he could do. It was a guy from Delaware that got into my account and they could not press charges.
So I reloaded UO. Things were slow going to get back but I needed to stay busy with the kids at school. Then the sheriff came and said we had 1 day to move. The house would be chained the next morning. I had finally had enough. The kids were at school and I was going to go out and enjoy one last day of UO…and then end things that night. I had no more will to live. It was too devastating to try and continue. I grabbed my miner and picks and went to Shame mountains in Fel. I was just waiting for some red to come along…today was not the day. I mined for a few hours and was at the blacksmith in Britain when a kid came up and started asking me 1000 mining questions. He wanted to mine. I said no. He pestered me for a half hour and finally I said we would go to the Shame mountains and mine for a bit. I figured I was walking into some kind of a trap but it shut him up for awhile. We mined for the better part of a day and he never stopped talking. He was only 18 and he told all about the problems he was having. I was getting close to the time the kids were coming home from school and he wanted me to meet his cousin. He was a guild leader and wanted me to join his guild. I didnt even know what the heck a guild was. I told him Id be back on and we could go meet his brother. I wasnt going to log back in but I did, and met with Duncan McLeod of the guild L/V. His cousins name was Blackbeard. We talked for a little bit and after hearing their stories I knew mine was bad but no where what they had been through. I joined the guild, gathered the kids, had them call every friend they had with cars and trucks and we moved the entire house that night. He saved my life that night.
I later found out that my ex-husband had actually sold our contents of the game to someone ….thats why all the characters that were left were mine and they deleted only his.
I became very close with those guys in the guild…Badger of DWxC stills plays. Im sure there are others. Ive loved this game from day one and have mad so many friends. Ive actually met several and I love that part of the game too. Im now in several guilds and all of these people are awesome. Alot Ive know have left but return once and awhile. UO saved my life that day. I hope its around for a long time. I never tire of playing. And Id also like to says THANK YOU to everyone at EA. You guys do an awesome job.
I started playing Ultima Online when I was a teenager and have continued to play and grow in this world for the last 15 years. Having to choose one of my most memorable moments from all those years has been challenging but I would have to say without a shadow of a doubt that the war between the Britannia Mage Tower Army and Mesanna’s Army is the moment in my UO time that is most memorable to me.
What started out as nothing more than taunting and poking fun at Mesanna on Stratics turned into a shard wide event where everyone was able to battle the “Prehistoric Neon Pink Loving Goth” aka Mesanna. Players immediately signed up to serve in the army and were designated fun player ranks such as Generals, Lieutenant Generals, Colonels and even a Janitor Poopsie.
Once the date was set and Mesanna gathered her own diabolical team, we were gated to one of the deserted Tokuno Islands which was decorated in amazing detail, right down to named characters heads mounted on poles and an already constructed graveyard for our army to rest in. We didn’t have much time to look around before Mesanna began her assault. She decimated our forces within a few seconds as players scrambled to their ships trying to survive…for Mesanna and her team it was probably like shooting Fish in a barrel which is very fitting since our war ended with me being swallowed up by a Giant Neon Pink Fish which I am still stuck in today and probably mounted on some lucky players wall… most likely in JinX’s Museum.