kahran042 (kahran042) wrote,
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kahran042

Sküljagger Manual: Chapter 1

As you may or may not know, there was once a SNES game called Sküljagger: Revolt of the Westicans, which came with a 75-page manual that explained pretty much everything about the game's story, leading to much confusion about what the hecky heck-heck was going on, and causing people to assume things based on what little was actually in game. However, recently I found the manual uploaded by a nice fellow called Kingmike on SNES Central. With it in my possession, I decided to do my duty as someone in possession of rare knowledge, and transcribe it so that it's freely available to all. By the way, if you're wondering about the weird text formatting, it's because I took the formatting directly from the manual, and it sometimes shapes the text to fit in illustrations which I couldn't really include. So, here's Chapter 1. 


Storm Jaxon hated Captain Sküljagger.

Hated him, pure and simple.

The reason was easy. For ten years, Sküljagger had ruled

the island of Westica with all the cruelty in his Kiltish heart.

For ten long and deadly years, he had silenced anyone who

opposed him...with one swing of a Kiltish battle-axe.

Ten years was enough of Sküljagger.

As far as Storm was concerned, the time had come for

things to change.

The time had come for Westica to be free again.

1 THE SWORD

  Storm Jaxon ducked behind a barrel, crouched down, 

and got ready to strike. He knew it was a crazy plan. He knew

that one wrong step would land him in Sküljagger's savage

grip.

       But he wanted that sword.

       From his hiding place, Storm had a perfect view of Gauntlet

Grounds—the giant field where Sküljagger trained his Kiltish

troops for battle. The sword was sitting on a brown crate, near

the edge of the trampled grass.

       Its golden handle flashed once in the morning sun.

       "Sküljagger's sword," Storm muttered, shaking his head.

"I must be insane." As usual, Storm was chewing a chunk of

homemade gum. He blew a snap-cherry bubble, popped it, 

and gazed at the Captain's sword. "It's just begging for a

new owner."

       Storm watched Sküljagger march around the field, shouting

at his troops. The Kiltish Army was the largest, fiercest force in 

the world—and Sküljagger was the Army's fiercest Captain.

Storm could see the cruel glint in Sküljagger's one good eye.

       "I've heard that some foolish Westicans are talking about

revolution," Sküljagger shouted. He threw his head back in

laughter. "Ha! What a delicious joke! I'd love nothing more

than to crush the Westicans—crush them like pathetic bugs—

then feed the left-overs to the battle-dogs. How does that 

sounds, my mighty steel-masked men?"

       The warriors lifted their rifles and shouted their infamous

battle cry. It was a high-pitched scream—like the sound of a

war-crazed, two-headed Kiltish battle-dog.

       Storm felt a cold line of sweat run down his side. At any

moment, Sküljagger could turn and march back to his sword.

       It was now or never.

       "Ingawa!" Storm whispered, then surged across the rocky

ground. He grabbed the handle and pulled the sword free.

The fine silver blade vibrated in his hand like a living being.

Storm smiled, gripped the golden handle tighter, and took off

running.

       After only three steps, though, Storm felt his boot catch on

a hidden root. He tripped forward and smashed the sword

against an empty metal barrel. The barrel thundered like a

Chinese gong—and Storm tumbled to the ground.

       Sküljagger spun around, his good eye blazing fire. Every

Kiltish warrior cocked his rifle.

       Storm snatched the sword from the dirt and leaped to his feet.

       "Crush that foolish cockroach!" Sküljagger screamed. "I

must have that sword back. I must!"

       Storm sprinted toward an old pier, pumping his arms like

mad. The sound of the Kiltish battle cry pierced the morning air,

and an icy chill shot up Storm's spine.

       "Whatever you do, don't choke now," he said to himself.

       Storm knew the city of Tuscamesh like the back of his hand.

He had lived in the Westican capital all his lfie, and knew every

house, every factory, and every winding street by heart. If he

could make it across these bridges and piers, he'd end up at old

Mr. Roop's warehouse. If he was lucky, maybe he could lose

the Kiltish in there.

       But if he wasn't lucky....

       Sküljagger pulled a long pistol from his belt. He took aim at

Storm's back, and a gruesome grim crossed his face.

       "This'll teach that Westican worm to touch my sword."

       A shot rang out, and Storm heard the bullet whiz past his

ear—exploding a crate just beside his head. He leaped across

a hole in the old wooden pier, then sailed over a barrel like a

jungle cat.

       Storm glanced over his shoulder. The Kiltish warriors were

gaining on him.

       "I must have that sword!" Sküljagger screamed, reloading

his pistol. "Fire at him, fire!"

       Storm ducked down between a small brown crate and a big

yellow barrel, just as twenty rifle-shots ripped through the air.

The hail of bullets turned the crate into pulp, showering Storm

with shreds of wood.

       "Whoa!" Storm cried, looking down at a hole that a bullet

had torn in his shirt. "Was that close or what?!"

       A sudden burst of energy rushed through his body, and

Storm sprinted off—faster than he ever thought he could. He

jumped, dodged bullets, and leaped from pier to pier. Soon the

Kiltish warriors lagged behind, slowed by their masks and

heavy armor. Storm jumped onto an old stone bridge, looked

over his shoulder, and grinned.

       He was almost starting to like this.

       "Sound the general alarm!" Sküljagger yelled, cupping his

                      mouth with both hands. His eye flamed with rage as

                      Storm grew smaller and smaller. "Call out every

                      Kiltish fighter in Tuscamesh," Sküljagger pointed one

                      long, crooked red finger at Storm's back. "I want that

                           worm's head brought to me on a silver platter!"

                                  "Sound the general alarm!" the Kiltish warriors

                           repeated.

                                  A moment later, Storm heard the alarm bell

                           ringing from the tallest tower in town. In a

moment, every Kiltish warrior, sailor, and Black-Mask would be

scouring the streets of Tuscamesh.

◆◆◆

       One thing was sure, Storm didn't want to meet any

Black-Masks. They were Sküljagger's personal guard—fiercely

loyal, and highly-trained in the martial arts. Only those who

had advanced beyond the black-belt stage of training were

awarded the honor of a Kiltish black-mask. It was rumored

that a Black-Mask could out-think, out-punch, and out-kick

even the most deadly martial masters of the world.

       Storm crossed the final bridge, and sprinted toward Mr.

Roop's warehouse. He remembered a small secret window, 

hidden in a back room of the ancient building. If he could

make it to the window, he stood a chance of getting out alive.

       But the streets were already crawling with Kiltish.

       He raced across the road, jumped onto a chain, and swung

through an open window—right into the heart of the ware-

house.

       "He's in the warehouse!" a Kiltish sailor called.

       "Company Blitz, take the front! Company Ravage, the

back!"

       "Swing your chains, and take no prisoners!"

       Storm scurried away from the window, leaned back against

a wall, and tried to catch his breath. It felt

like the entire Kiltish Empire was after him.

He glanced down at the gold and silver

sword in his hand.

       "I hope you're worth the trouble,"

Storm muttered—as if the sword could

hear him.

       Next, he turned a corner and entered a

giant room filled with barrels, crates, and

boxes. He rushed toward a stairway at the

end of the room—leaping and dodging over

obstacles along the way. But as he got

closer to the stairway, he heard Kiltish

boots pounding up the steps.

       He stopped short and spun around, trapped.

       "There he is!"

       "Don't let the insect escape!"

       Kiltish sailors were blocking every door. They rushed

toward Storm, swinging skull-chains that whistled in the air.

       There was only one way out. Storm scrambled up a ladder,

jumped onto a stack of six dark brown crates, and smashed

open a secret window with the

sword-handle. He shimmied

out—tearing his pants on the

broken glass—and slid down

the rain gutter with one arm.

       "He's down there!" the

sailors shouted, too big to fit

through the window. Their

faces flushed red with fury.

       "I need to get to the old

part of town," Storm said, his

chest heaving. "And I need to

get there now."

       The old part of Tuscamesh

was a maze of thin alleys and

curving streets. Even some Westicans got lost in the

labyrinthine passageways. If he could make it to the old town,

he was sure he could lose the Kiltish.

       He knew a short-cut across some old bridges.

       "Too late to worry about safety," Storm muttered, as he

turned and sprinted toward an old bridge, leaping over a sign

that read: "DANGER! BAD BRIDGES! KEEP OFF! DANGER!"

       Storm caught a glimpse of something black in the distance

ahead. It ducked behind a barrel, then disappeared like the

shadow of a blade.

       "Uh-oh," Storm said, his heart sinking. "A Black-Mask."

       He ran forward carefully, ready to swing the sword.

Suddenly a black blur appeared out of nowhere, chopping

rock-hard arms and slicing the air. Storm screamed and

ducked his head. The Black-Mask's bladed foot missed his

neck by an inch.

       The Black-Mask landed in ready position—hands up, legs

apart, shoulders hunched. They squared-off, circling and star-

ing daggers at each other's eyes.

       Suddenly the Black-Mask exploded into action. He spun

around and sliced the air into pieces, screaming a high-pitched

scream. Storm ducked, and the Black-Mask's foot-blade tore

                                                      his shirt.

                                                             "You're quick, for a kid," the

                                                      Black-Mask said. 

                                                             At that, Storm attacked,

                                                      swinging the sword with all his

                                                      might. The Black-Mask jumped,

                                                      dodged the blade, and landed

                                                      near the edge of the bridge.

                                                      But one foot landed on a loose

                                                      stone, and the Black-Mask lost

                                                      his balance.

                                                             Storm saw his chance and

                                                      moved like lightning. He

                                                      grabbed a brown keg and

                                                      heaved it forward. The keg

                                                      knocked the Black-Mask

                                                      backward—and over the edge

                                                      of the bridge.

       By the time the Black-Mask splashed into the water—far, 

far below—Storm had already spun and sprinted off.

       He ran into the winding streets of the old town, past farm-

ers pushing carts of snap-cherries, purple sea-grapes, green

island-limes, and tasty Westican-oranges. Storm used those

fruits to flavor his homemade bubble gum, and all the mer-

chants knew him by name. He passed tired Westican workers

on their way to the jemerald mines. He smelled the warm

smell of Westican bread rising from Pym's Bakery.

       And there wasn't a single Kiltish warrior in sight.

       Storm smiled. He stopped running, and strolled across the

stone bridge that led toward home.

◆◆◆

       "I don't believe it," Storm said to himself, smiling and shak-

ing his head. "I just stole Sküljagger's sword."

       As he walked through the winding streets, Storm thought 

about Captain Sküljagger.

       He would never forget the day that Sküljagger sailed his bat-

tle fleet into Tuscamesh Harbor. Even though Storm had been

very young at the time, he could still remember the sound of

Kiltish cannonballs ripping through the air. He could remember

his first glimpse of Sküljagger, too—a giant man with a scalded

skull, laughing as he slashed his way down Bladeback Street.

       Storm's mother had been killed that day. She had been a

doctor at a Westican hospital. The hospital had been destroyed

by cannon-fire from Sküljagger's own personal battleship.

       Sküljagger's force crushed Westica in less than a day. From

then on, Westica was no longer a proud, free nation—as it had

been for a thousand years. It was just another, tiny part of the

mighty Kiltish Empire.

       Worse yet, it was Sküljagger's part.

       Storm gripped the sword tighter in his hands. As far as he

was concerned, Sküljagger deserved whatever he got.

       Storm caught a glimpse of his house in the distance.

Another two-hundred yards and he'd be home, safe and sound.

       "Halt, worm!" a voice shouted.

       A pistol shot rang out, and a bullet smashed through a win-

dow beside Storm's head.

       It was Sküljagger. The Captain was running at full speed,

his purple cape flowing out behind him like a sinister wing.

       "Give up, you miserable scum-worm!" Sküljagger shouted.

       Storm ducked into a side-alley, and ran for his life. He

needed a plan, and he needed one fast.

       That's when he saw ten rain barrels, lined up in a row along

the thin winding alley.

       He jumped inside the last barrel and ducked his head, just

as Sküljagger turned down the alley.

       "You're crazy if you think you can escape!" Sküljagger cried,

looking down the empty alley-way. "You stinking pond-scum!"

       Storm listened to Sküljagger's heavy steps. They grew closer

and closer, until they stopped right beside the barrel. Storm

held his breath. A silence fell that seemed to last forever.

Then—at last—the footsteps started up again, moved away, and

disappeared down another alley.

       Storm let out a quiet sigh of relief. He reached out of the

barrel and tapped the sword against the closest window.

       "Who is it?" a voice asked from inside.

       "It's me," Storm whispered. "Let me in, fast!"

       "Storm!" the young man shouted, yanking open the window

and looking down. "What are you doing in the rain barrel?"

       "Shut up!" Storm said, handing him the sword. "Just grab

the sword and help me in."

       It was Storm's best friend. His real name was R.L. Wright,

but everyone called him Wits.

       Basically, Wits was a genius. His bedroom looked like the labo-

ratory of a mad scientist—with wires, test tubes, and strange con-

coctions covering his desk, and complicated diagrams tacked onto

his walls. Wits knew how to make the finest crossbows in Westica, 

using twine from the bark of the finger-tree. He knew how to

weave rope from the vines of the moss-plant. And, to top it off, he

was almost as much as a daredevil as Storm.

       Wits snatched the sword, dropped it to the floor, and pulled

Storm through the window.

       "Ingawa!" Storm said, jumping to his feet.

       "Ingawa!" Wits answered.

       The two friends raised their hands in the air and slammed

them together. The "ingawa" was their secret greeting.

       Only one other person in the world knew the "ingawa"—and

that person was Trina Wright, Wits' half-sister. Trina knew the

Westican jungle as well as Storm or Wits, and was the best

crossbow shooter Storm had ever me.

       "I thought I heard your voice, Storm," Trina said, ducking

into the room and giving Storm a quick ingawa. Right away,

Trina spotted the shining sword.

       "What is that?" she asked.

       "Ahem," Storm cleared his throat, as if getting ready for


the announcement of the year. "It's Sküljagger's sword."

       "Sküljagger's sword?" Wits and Trina said at the exact same

time.

       Trina turned pale. "You mean you stole it?"

       Storm nodded.

       Trina rushed over and slammed the shutters closed. Wits

locked the door and leaned his back against it, breathing hard.

       "This is serious," Trina said in a whisper.

       "Did he see your face?" Wits asked.

       "Not a chance," Storm answered proudly. "The only thing

Sküljagger saw was my back."

       Wits broke into a little grin, and shook his head. "I can't

believe you actually did it!" he said, excited. "INGAWA!"

       "But haven't you heard the rumors?" Trina asked.

       "What rumors?" Storm asked.

       "It's supposed to be a magic sword," Trina answered. I've

heard that Sküljagger found it in a jemerald mine. Some people

even say Sküljagger talks to it."

       "Magic sword, hah!" Storm laughed. "No such thing."

       "Easy, smart guy," Wits aid. "There are plenty of weird

things in the world." He started counting things off on his fin-

gers. "There are power stones and inexplicable force-fields and

maybe even ghosts. Just yesterday I was studying an ancient

cliff-face near the beach. It had strange writing all over it—and

it wasn't Westican writing, either. Where did it come from? A

lost civilization?" Wits shrugged. "So who knows, maybe the

sword is magic."

       Storm leaped to his feet and swiped the sword through the

air.

       "Dear magic sword," he said, talking into the handle, "Please

make me a huge breakfast of bladeback steaks and bread. "And

while you're at it, let me blow magic flavor bubbles that make

me fly.

       Storm waited a moment—and nothing happened. Wits

and Trina couldn't help but laugh.

       "So much for magic swords," Storm said.

       Still, it was an incredible sword. There was a big hole in the

blade, right near the handle—where a jewel might have been. Right

below the hole was a tiny inscription, which read, "LDL DRU."

       "I'm starting to get a               isn't that stupid.

feeling," Trina said. "A                 If he cancels Mask Day,

strong feeling."                              he'll have a riot on his

       "Uh-oh," Storm said.              hands."

For as long as Storm could               "I wouldn't put any-

remember, Trina had got-           thing past Sküljagger,"

ten strange feelings when-         Trina said.

ever something big was                     Storm looked down at

about to happen. It was as          the sword in his hands. He

if she had an amazing sixth        knew that Wits was right.

sense.                                             If Sküljagger actually can-

       "I've got a feeling that            celled Mask Day, there

Sküljagger is going to can-         would be big trouble.

cel Mask Day," Trina said.                  There would be

"All because of this sword."         revolution.

       "What?!" Wits                                  And Mask Day was

exclaimed. "Sküljagger                tomorrow.



Tags: sküljagger
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