Era: The Chosen – The War Continues…

Hi everyone!

Today, I’m bringing you what’s currently the last story in the timeline… that of a dangerous mission, which has the potential to change the War for ever!

My next post, however, will be about the different time periods of the War, so keep an eye out! And don’t forget to check out the Kickstarter, which is currently active!

This story was written by J. A. Cummings. In fact, it was one of her first ever pieces of Roleplaying work. She’s since written for a variety of games, including Feral Games’s “Ghost Ops”, as well as contributing to the creation of Era: The Chosen!


They gathered at one of the houses in the Rostov compound, the one with the light blue stucco walls and elaborate flower gardens, at the dinner hour. Paula Rostova welcomed them in her throaty contralto and showed them into the dining room, where the table was heaped with a dazzling feast of roast meats, savory sauces, breads and candied fruits.

Annie Garcia leaned over to Roger D’aoust, who was seated next to her. “What’s the occasion?”

He tucked a sugared fig into his mouth and shrugged. “I don’t know. Dad just said to be here, and when I heard there’d be free food, well…”

On her other side, Everette Chike said, “I think I heard what this is about. I hope you have your schedule clear for the next month, at least.”

Annie raised an eyebrow. “A month?”

Their speculating was cut short by the arrival of Paula Rostova and her partner, Kira Nakamura. They sat at opposite ends of the table and smiled at their guests.

“Welcome,” Kira said. She inclined her head graciously, the sakura ornament in her glossy black hair shimmering. “Please, enjoy this meal that we have prepared for you.”

Roger whispered to Annie, “That means shut the hell up.”

You shut up.”

The meal proceeded with unhurried elegance, with polite conversation and delicious culinary creations paraded out from the kitchen by the household staff. Annie hadn’t eaten so much in one sitting in months, maybe even years. Roger, who probably ate this much every time he sat at a table, was particularly happy.

After dinner drinks were served in the garden, and the guests – all of them Chosen, Annie noted – retired to the fresh air to admire the bay from the vantage point of the Inner Circle. Annie lived closer to the docks, and she rarely made it this far up the hill. Something told her that tonight would be memorable for more reasons that that before it was over.

Paula gathered the attendees – herself, Kira, Annie, Everette, Roger, and the two taciturn Isak brothers, Rostov cousins – beside the fountain. The central figure was shaped like two cavorting dolphins, water jetting out of their open mouths. Annie was silently grateful that there were no naked cherubs spouting into the pool.

“You may be wondering why you were all invited here tonight,” Paula began.

Roger nodded. “Good call.” Everette shot him a nasty look, and he fell silent.

Their hostess smiled tightly and continued. “We are all Chosen here, so there is no need for subterfuge or secrets. With the help of the Nakamuras and the Garcias, working with the Shadow Runner and Falling Rock clans, among others, the Anonassi have been beaten back toward Erebus. They have lost their footholds in many corners of the Lost Lands, and it has given us time to investigate them, and Erebus.”

Kira stepped forward. “We know that they have the power to create the portals they use to access the Lost Lands from their dimension. We also know that they have been breeding the Anohaashi for release into the Lost Lands as swarms.”

Annie crossed her arms and suppressed a shudder. She had seen one of those swarms, tiny bee-like monsters from Erebus that devoured everything the encountered – human and otherwise. She had barely escaped with her life. Only the appropriate application of some major explosives by her brother had saved their party. She had hoped to never run into the little bastards again.

Kira nodded toward the Isak brothers. “Pete and Richard have undertaken some dangerous surveillance missions, and they have pinpointed where an Anohaashi breeding hive is located, just inside Erebus. They have seen it three times in the same place when nearby portals were opened by Anonassi brutes.”

Roger sniffed. “Right. So… does anybody have any bug spray?”

Paula nodded. “Chike Laboratories have been hard at work at developing something along those lines. They’ve come up with pesticide-filled explosive cannisters that will disperse a very potent anti-Anohaashi toxin upon detonation. They have three units ready to be deployed. The only thing we need is a team willing to try to enter Erebus to lay the charges.”

Annie went cold.

Everette said the obvious. “We’re the team.”

“You have been selected by your respective families for your speed, night vision, and demolitions skills.” Kira looked at them seriously. “I think you know what this means.”

Annie’s hands were shaking. Roger took a breath. “Once we get into Erebus, there’ll be no getting us back out.”

Their hostesses looked at one another, and then Paula nodded gravely. “Yes. This is a one-way mission.”

“Our families have chosen us to die,” Annie whispered.

“Your families have chosen to you to be offered the chance to do this thing. If we can destroy the hive, it may end the Anohaashi threat once and for all.”

Everette laughed bleakly. “For the small, small price of five lives.”

“You are not obligated to accept the mission,” Kira said.

The five Chosen looked at one another. They all knew the shame that would attend a refusal, and none of them were willing to bring that stain upon themselves. Their answers were foregone conclusions.

Everette, who seemed to be positioning herself as the party leader, said, “When do we leave?”

With a sigh, Paula clasped her hands in front of her dour black abaya. “One week from today. That will give you time to…make arrangements.”

There was another deep silence as they all wrestled with the things they had been too young to consider until now. Finally, Roger chuckled.

“Just make sure you send us off with a feed like this one next week. Those meat pies were to die for…”