Title: Paranoia by Firelight
Dory - December 12, 2011 03:25 AM (GMT)
((Freya's a Character
The moon was a crescent scythe in the cloudless night sky, skating it's pearly reflection over the water's surface like rocks. The high tide crashed over the jagged rocks at the base of the cliff, drowning their lower peaks and the noise around it with midnight foam.
In the distance, a host of the last of the scheduled ships cut slivers of shadows in to an already illusive horizon, almost completely masked in the low hanging fog of night. A spectacle to the virgin eye to be sure, but Freya knew so much better.
Not a soul saw her in the window of her cabin, witnessed the single glance behind, or the perfect dive that sent her spiraling in to the depths.
A wolf's howl called it's welcome as she soared beneath the water's surface, just as though she had never left the dreary murk. Her breast stroke brought her closer to the cliff's face more quickly than the ship could have imagined. Natural. Uninhibited. The closest she had come to free in decades, but it didn't matter.
No matter how quickly she moved, no matter how doggedly she pushed her vampiric muscles, her mind moved twice as fast-- punched on, twice as hard.
The cycle, the circle-- there were so many things that she could have called it. Blessing, Curse-- given up on the distinction. Had seen enough to know that it didn't matter. No right or wrong for the denizens of the night, and no way to know what was to come. Her's was a one way road straight to complete obliteration.
Fingertips gripping the slick smooth surface of a rock, she surged from the water and in to one of many of the abandoned rocky caverns which, in earlier hours, might have proven itself to be a liability to her privacy. In the frigid cover of night, though, only the shadows clung to her heels as she moved, dripping, to the corner of the caves mouth. A handhold, and she swung to the cliff face, and scaled up-- up-- up.
Miles from the water and the ships and the pirates below, a soft breeze carried the sound of a second howl to the demon's ears as claws dug heedlessly in to her stone, hoisting her steadily up-- up-- up.
No hesitation. Oh yes, Freya knew the dangers of her choices. The moral implications, the -appearances- -- the never ending battle she lived.
The battle she couldn't live without.
Claws catching the sparsely grassed edge of the cliff at last, she hoisted herself up and above the outpost and to one knee, fingers reaching already for Edmunds Blade as her golden eyes traced the sharply blued landscape for signs of movement.
Alucard - December 19, 2011 07:09 AM (GMT)
The soft ocean breeze blew across the tops of the cliffs and caused the small camp fire to waver back and forth. This caused shadows to dance and play across the face of Ken as he sat starring deep into the fire. to someone wandering by he would appear as is lost in deep thought, in another world. This was only half true as he was in meditation, and though it looked as though he was lost he was aware of his surroundings.
Not that there was much to be aware of except the howls of a couple wolves. This was the only noise to break the rhythmic crackle of the fire and lapping of the ocean waves as the surf crashed into the cliff face below. He had decided to come to the cliffs to get some meditation. His hunt for the scorpion demon having gone no where in quite sometime.
The monk was beginning to wonder if he should give up his hunt. With no way of finding the demon through magic himself. Nor any clues coming from any of the towns he had stopped in. As he stared into the flames he could still clearly remember the demon as it laughed at them all and then attacked. He then took in a deep breath and cleared the image from his mind focusing on peace of mind and true serenity. Something someone could only find out in the wilderness away from all the noise and motion of the cities and towns.
Dory - December 19, 2011 04:14 PM (GMT)
For a moment, the vampire woman stayed motionless. A soft breeze caught her hair as her eyes slid closed and she let the air tip her head forward. A moment, a heartbeat, and it had passed; releasing the sounds of crackling fire again. Louder than it was meant to be, at first, until she focused harder on the individual pops.
Two fires, then. One nearer to her, than the second-- a wanderer. Luckily, the sounds of flames didn't come from directly between The Children and herself, but somewhere adjacent.
Not an immediate threat.
Freya opened her eyes, and stood-- mid stride before she had fully straightened; mind racing with even less preamble than the sudden, long movements that brought her between the shadows of deadened coast trees that surrounded the shack of her selection. She was not a woman without enemies. She made them rather quickly, actually-- as suddenly as every long step that carried her through the underside. Among them like friends. She wondered how many of them were capable of hiding in the dagger sharp shadows that reached for her now. Wondered how many could trace her location without her ever even knowing they were looking.
Wondered how many of them even cared that much. For contrast, she told herself that she didn't; but never had she believed it.
Another howl echoed over the cliff's top, ricocheting between each hollow tree and then out with growing intensity as the woman sped her pace, coming in to the flame-lit haze of a clearing which made for ample enough cover of a tiny two story building.
Along the rafters of the porch hung the carcasses of six deer-- or what was left of them, blood dripping from severed veins over antlers to drip in to gleaming buckets underneath. Most of the meat worth taking had been cut away hours ago, and rot was beginning to mark the lines of what was left. Some distance from the porch, a fire was roaring beside the plank-beaten path. The sillouette of a larger-than-life wolf lifted her head to regard her master as she licked at her chops, before she went back to the six point skull nestled neatly between her paws.
Just as though everything was alright.
She ignored the pain inherent in the thought-- the jagged tear that came from memory. From sternum to stomach, like the cut of a blade; scars caught as though in flame. Silent reminders that she'd never escape. Nothing was alright. Never would be. Never had to be.
"Report." She commanded as a man came from the building's only door, and she drew to a stop at the steps of the porch, extending one hand. Only once three rings had been dropped in to the center of her palm did movement resume, eyes flickering around the sides of the building. "The children?"
"Well." Fesseln answered quickly, watching her shoulders relax against the word as though the air had been taken out of a woman shaped balloon. "They've left to hunt, but they should be back within the hour. Aliciel refuses to let Aiden go alone."
"Good for her." The vampire sniffed, and sighed, looking downwards to replace her rings upon her fingers-- Sapphire, Ruby, and Emerald; in descending order. Episodes, chapters, what did it matter what they stood for?
"Not exactly." Fesseln went on, pulling her from her thoughts as he moved down the stairs, and sent her a sideways look before he turned toward the flames. "I've been collecting some crazy stories around the outpost. They're why she goes."
And just like that, she was inflated again; palm already itching for Purebane's hilt. Secret reflex for a secret instinct-- waiting for the fall she'd known would come all along.
"Alright; your aim is set?" 'Smaller' didn't mean a whole hell of a lot, for Aliciel. She stood behind the boy, arms crooked under his own for support as her eyes focused well in front of him, fingers tight over the string of the bow that they shared. She supported most of the tension this way, but she let him think it had something to do with his own hold on the hand-carved arrow that he pressed against the string.
In front of them, the eight point buck which was their target, was completely oblivious to their presence. Lips close to his ear, and chin resting on his shoulder, the girl didn't have to raise her voice to be heard clearly; but she knew their time like this was limited. His fingers were bleeding, mostly at the tips and a bit under the joints that made his knuckles-- scraped the last time he had released the arrow just an instant too late. No where near a fatal flaw, but enough to confuse her perceptions. She'd gotten better at resisting the call of the ambrosia-- would never have touched that which lay inside of the mortal boy who was her only friend, but if it was already oozing...
"On the count of three this time." She whispered, trembling very slightly as she felt the warmth of the pulsing blood of his neck against her cheek, and squinted. "One... Two... ... Three!"
The arrow soared through the air, almost as quickly as the child vampire released her mortal student and held her breath; watching the wood bury solidly in to the animal's neck before she broke out in to a sprint after it. It made two flailing steps before she had fallen upon it, one arm hooking around it's torso, and swinging herself up and on to it's back. Her second hand stole purchase on one of eight antlers and she dragged it full arc to the ground, holding fast until the last of the death throes had passed.
Their seventh and last kill-- thank god. She wasn't sure how much longer she could have resisted the blood's call; but each bucket made for four canteens, and seven times four was twenty eight. It had also been a nightly affair, at their leader's behest. Twenty eight times seven made one hundred and ninety six stockpiled canteens. Half of one would keep her blood lust quiet, and her only friend safe from harm-- that was the part which was important. The rest was cocktailed and kept liquid with what was left of their stock from the Well of Syn. One out of four would be mixed half and half-- the rest, three quarters deer to one quarter unknown.
Whenever Fesseln got to it, that was.
She lifted her eyes from her calculations as a resounding howl caught through the trees, and she stood to look over her shoulder with a silent curse.
"Freya's back." she announced as she looked forward again. Aiden was already moving-- familiar process. Kill it, carry it back, feed. Otherwise, Kill it, mark the spot, get Fesseln to carry it back, and then feed. "Be careful."
"I'm always careful." He retorted as he passed her, moving just a bit faster toward the shack, and the second camp that he had no way to know of. Anyone who knew him would have known the statement to be a baldfaced lie, but Aliciel merely sighed as the boy blundered on without her.
((You can assume that Aiden will be passing near enough to your camp to be heard, Alucard. He's not very quiet. lol))
Alucard - December 19, 2011 08:30 PM (GMT)
His mind was focused now as he listened to the sounds of the world around him. Ken would often sit and meditate like this when he was out along it gave his mind a chance to rest as well as his body. It also delayed actually having to go to sleep which when out alone was a bad thing to do. His hearing was alert for any noise out of the ordinary.
Then he heard it not that far off the edge of the forest he was camped in front of. Some one was talking and not moving all that quietly. By the sounds of the voice it was a male and a young one at that. Was this going to be some kind of setup or trap. He had seen it a time or two before a group of bandits or thugs would send in a small child first and then once they had the target distracted would strike.
Ken silently stood up and stretched It would be nice to have a nice night with out having to make a mess. Now there was a chance that this was not some kind of bait for a trap, but how many young ones would be out at this hour of the night. So leaving the fire still burning he slipped quietly into the woods.
He had no intention of attacking anyone if he didn't have to. Though he also had no intentions of someone trying to get the jump on him. He would see if he could find the source of the noise and if it proved to be nothing he would simply return to his camp. It wasn't very long before he found the boy moving through the woods rather quickly and making enough noise to cover his few missteps.
After seeing the boy appeared to be along and not even aware of his camp Ken decided to see just why a long young one would be in the woods at this hour. He was currently unaware that this boy had a hunting companion not far away, and as such spoke. "What are you doing out in the woods so late by yourself lad?" His question was simple and direct while his voice remained rather flat and cold.
Dory - December 20, 2011 02:55 PM (GMT)
Aiden probably wouldn't have even seen the camp he had intended to merely brush by, single minded focus set straight ahead for the shack and the second of his guardian's, but a voice caught his attention. Asking him what he was doing out so late? Not so much of an unfamiliar question; or exactly unwarranted-- he slowed to a nice slow, un-threatening stop.
The 'adults' in his life had differing opinions when it came to the methods of handling strangers. Advice from one said to merely scream as loud as he could-- somehow, she would surely appear-- but the second contended that not every stranger meant him ill. As he turned toward the source of the question, fingers tightening on the bow he couldn't draw, he considered the dividing lines between the theorems. He didn't exactly -mind- them. They just gave him a little more lee way in the end.
"I was hunting, sir." He answered honestly, just loud enough to be audible as his eyes flicked nervously behind him-- back toward his hunting companion-- and back toward the direction he had been headed before he pulled one hand through his scraggly blonde hair and gave a weak smile.
"The biggest bucks come out in the night, or the wee hours of the morning. Dad's dressing the last one we brought in, so he couldn't come out with me." He finished the excuse, keeping his eyes locked on the stranger as he swung the bow over his shoulder, and offered a hand to shake with a broadening smile.
Whoever the stranger was, his guardian's were going to want to see him. He'd found himself too close, and Aiden's specialty was tailoring-- he wouldn't have been able to fight if he needed to.
"My name's Aiden. Can I ask for yours?"
Fesseln eyed the woman warily for a long moment, lips pursed in a hush as her arms crossed over his chest. Sighing, he turned away and shook his head, moving toward the closest of the carcasses to check the bucket.
"Meaning..." He began, and sighed again. Delivering bad news to someone like Freya was something resembling a suicide mission of chance. There was never a way to tell precisely how she would react, what she would do, or whether or not the first reaction would be the last-- Ah, how he loved his job.
Freya shifted uncomfortably, letting her arms drop before the air squeezed out of her lungs like dust. Her eyes did all the threatening, and the humanoid straightened before her scrutinizing gaze.
"North Cliff was attacked, very shortly before we arrived." He sped on, relaxing as her eyes moved away. "Hundreds dead and missing. Thirteen ships, their cargo and their crew, missing and presumed dead and gone. Like in to thin air."
Lifting his arms to pull the first of the carcasses from the rafter it was suspended from, he sighed and shook his head. "Took me a while to get to the bottom of it. No bodies. No blood. Nothing. Just a path of emptied rooms. There were witnesses, but..."
He paused to look more directly toward the vampire with a grim smile.
"They collectively 'forgot'."
For the first time in a long time, Freya was glad that her heart wasn't beating. She didn't have to feel the rhythm come to an abrupt stop and spin around with the cold beginning to descend upon her body. Forgotten Massacre-- she'd seen such things too many times before.
Trembling, she turned away from the dragon and the report, crossing her arms over her chest and focusing her gaze in to the distance again.
"The culprit?" She tossed the question over her shoulder, and her fangs clamped down hard on her lower lip to fill her mouth with blood. What sustenance she perceived in the action was an illusion, she knew, but it helped her to quiet her body before it moved in to all out shaking.
"You need to ask?" Shrugging, Fesseln tossed the remains of the carcass over the edge of the porch, watching the wolf rise lazily to make quick work of the remaining meat and bones. "A woman. All dressed in white, with no need to walk. Some of the locals suggest that it was the region's banshee... but she wasn't alone."
Freya turned slowly, lifting an eyebrow. The statement didn't come as a surprise: Adrianna was never alone, but the traits she looked for in her companions were sporadic at best. It was her way of staying inside of the drawn lines without arousing suspicion.
"There was a child with her. A little undead girl, who did most of the killing herself. Also, a man followed her out. Taejin Chazown, according to the Inn's roster. Apparently he was having some trouble with some of the locals, and the attack liberated him.
Freya closed her eyes. A little undead girl-- she had seen her. Had let her get away-- With enough of a vampiric force that Moun had originally called upon Darshe to see them eradicated. Her own presence there had been mostly coincidental-- a matter of boredom and a ventilation source to be stolen away; but she remembered.
"Of course, I only mention the name because he was sighted again in Nazca, just after we left; with a young Lady we've both met."
And there was only one young woman, to whom Fesseln would have referred to as a Lady. Freya stiffened, shakes beginning anew. She didn't know the girl well, but she knew her well enough to understand the naivety of her youth. So sweet, so trusting, so much potential-- so perfect for the game.
She turned her head, and spat.
Alucard - December 20, 2011 08:08 PM (GMT)
Ken watched the kid as he stopped and tried to think of how exactly to handle the sudden question. He then responded with a firm answer of hunting as his eyes darted around nervously. This made him leery and question the truth of the statement. The kid then ran a hand through his hair and continued.
While the kid was talking ken looked in the direction the kid had come from and in the direction he was headed. He was ready just encase his original guess went through. Yet no one seemed to appear yet he would stay on guard as the kid finished about how his dad was back cleaning one of the deer they had killed.
The kid who addressed himself as Aiden then extended his hand and asked for his name. Just as cold and calm as before he extended his own hand and responded. "Name is Ken. If you were hunting were is your kill, or did you miss?" He wasn't sure how true the kids story was but he had been right about the bigger deer being out at night and early morning.
Yet the kid was walking around with a bow out and no buck to show. Either he was lying, hadn't gotten anything, left the kill to get help, or a combination. Either way he hoped to get some answers, and if the kid proved to just be hunting then maybe he could get some information from the kid and his family.
Dory - December 22, 2011 02:27 AM (GMT)
Aiden lifted an eyebrow as the curious introductions continued, withdrawing his hand after this 'Ken' had shaken it, and casting another glance behind him. He wasn't entirely sure what he had been expecting, or if what he got differed in any way, but he was beginning to get a bad feeling about this. He was above North Cliff, after all-- there was no end to the variety of people he could encounter.
"I left it with my partner." Crossing his arms over his chest, he straightened his shoulders and raised his chin. Aliciel was neither patient, nor far. Were something to happen, he had only very little to worry about. Of course, that said nothing of what could happen if he fucked up before she got there.
"Too big for me to carry back-- Say; what're -you- doing out here all on your lonesome?" He cracked the smallest of grins and cocked his head to the side, taking an appraisal of his own. The guy was way bigger than he was-- no surprise there, he was a grand total of fourteen years old. Clearly a fighter; or at least he had the marks from battles. "It's pretty dangerous out here, even for the roughest folk. My family's been living in an abandoned house, just a little that way." Pausing, he uncrossed his arms to point. "I'm sure no one would mind if you wanted to drop by. It's a lot safer than what's out here, that's for sure."
Actually, he had to consider, it was more relative than 'sure'.
Luthe - December 26, 2011 01:22 PM (GMT)
He couldn't see anything while talon points diced his scaly eyelids and the taste and smell of feathers filled his other senses until he thought he would gag to death on their stench. There were so many. He didn't know the exact count, but pinwheeling through the air and being bombarded from all angles while still more clung to his flailing carcass, Elyon considered himself drastically outnumbered. The dragon in his flight by night had crashed through a rugged treeline atop a high hill - apparently the home of a flock of owlkin, just rousing themselves for the evening hunt. At the first stroke of claws against his hide, the dragon belched up a thick swath of flame to burn a path for him amidst the branches and slow his pursuer. That had been a mistake that he now regretted, as dozens of aven swarmed him and tried to drag him tot he ground.
They latched on to his underbelly, where soft golden scales weren't encrusted with thick reptilian ridges. Beneath his stalky arms, he crushed them as they tried to carve out places to grasp with their beaks and sharp talons. With fangs and wide head, he snapped at them, all within the deafening caw of the night owl's screech. They started in on his wings, and besides beat even harder to keep them off, there was nothing he could do to stop them from ripping holes through the soft flesh that splayed between the bones. Such vigorous actions over and over exhausted him, and he felt himself slipping from the air. He aimed for an overhang above a cliff face a hundred meters in the distance, and when he knew that momentum could carry him and the pile of squawking pheasants over the chasm and onto the open ledge on the edge of the forest, he tucked his wings in and dropped.
Many owlkin were crushed in the landing, but more and more came to replace them, more furious than ever. Another scratched at his eyes, and be bellowed, dousing the space in front of him with fire and his own anguishing cries. He closed his mouth from there to mash another bird in his teeth, killing instantly with the force of his massive jaws. A mighty paw raised and came down to stomp the wing of another, stupid enough to land there at his feet. His foot smashed the creature's wing. Elyon scuffed it across the ground, and tore the appendage from the bird's body, leaving it to screech and die where it lay. He felt them moving about his back, and lashed with his tail and wings, but couldn't possibly reach them all.
Rediculous! He was a dragon. Birds were the lowest animal to soar in the skies, and he was god to them. He roared and more flame shot from his maw. In the dragon tongue, he ordered them away, but they cackled, and careened harder in their dives to try and pierce the thicker scales of his back.
Dory - December 28, 2011 12:52 PM (GMT)
((...post's extra long cause I forgot to fill in Freya's part of the last one. ^^;; ))
For a long moment, she was quiet. Thinking. Adrianna's release was old news, but to think that she was moving so quickly was a matter of concern. If anyone knew her, it would have been the original sacrifice-- little sister and Abomination. Scattered from here to kingdom come. That was what happened when you stood in the path of the Illustrious Queen, or whatever she was calling herself, now wasn't it?
Her heart ached for Xanthe, and she resisted the urge to bite her lip again. How many tricks had been burgled in the night? The question, the obvious differential-- it made her feel sick.
Her hands balled in to fists at her sides before she looked back toward Fesseln and the carcass he tossed over the edge of the porch. Like clockwork, the wolf leapt to her feet to catch fangs in what was left of the deer's meat and to drag it underneath of her. Her paws made quick work of breaking the bones apart; making the sweeter, calcium rich marrow of the innermost bones more easily accessed.
Nothing of the fallen would go to waste. The hide would go to make pelts. The meat to feed those who's lungs quivered with breaths long taken for granted; and the blood to feed those who weren't so gifted. The organs, the horns, the eyes-- those would be sold to those better equipped to take advantage of superstition, and the proceeds put directly to proper use. Their trail would be erased in mere days.
But was it fast enough?
The vampire shook her head very slightly, jaw tight. Adrianna was here. Who was she to say she wouldn't return? Who's to say she's not here, now?
Her aim was coming too close. Amitiel wasn't under Purebane's Wing.
So why had she stepped over the line?
As though on cue, the first sound of shrieking Aven caught her ear, and she twitched, eyes flicking up and then behind as her posture straightened. Out of the trance, and back to alert-- she lifted a palm to signal Fesseln to be still and let her eyes fall closed. The bellow came quick, followed by the roar of flames that pierced through her mind and imagination like shards of frozen glass. It took only a few pieces to to bring understanding enough-- that something was fighting for it's life-- and she opened her eyes as sharply as she pivoted to move.
"The children." She commanded with the first few steps, fingers already working the buckle of the blade at her hip as she moved.
A draconic tongue commanded they begone with virtually no success; and she drew the blade which harnessed the flames, quickening her pace.
She didn't dignify the protest with an answer-- because she could smell blood, even over the rot of death; because those shrieks came from the beaks of owl kind-- she broke in to a run. At the edge of the clearing, she focused the energy in to her calves and sprung in to the air, wings bursting with a flare of violet mist as she cleared the tips of deadened trees and gravity began to tug at her ankles again. A powerful beat brought obsidian liquid through swirling canals like veins in long, glass like feathers, and denied physics their purpose for just long enough to catch the tipping arcs of aven assailants.
Breath. Adrenaline. Almost Alive.
And Freya belonged to the ground again.
Her body tipped forward and her wings flattened sharply in to a glide. A sweep of Edmund's Blade raised a stream of fire from it's tip, and her wings bent to accommodate a sudden spiral as she dove with ever quickening speeds. Sword pulling up and before her, she tightened the furious coil around her body even as her wings pulled closer, and she pierced the swarm like a comet.
She almost made a graceful landing. Too near to the ground, her wings flared sharply out, and the flames caught in their path exploded outwards in tightly tiered waves, angled somewhat upwards as she struggled to right the wrong. Her heels caught in to the dirt with too much momentum to stabilize, and she vaulted-- fuck!-- over the cliff's edge and toward the jagged shore below.
Her one free hand snapped out to catch the first of the rocks to come within reach. She swung, but held fast, even as she crashed against the cliff's face with a grunt.
She looked down as her wings faded, snickering. She was still mostly on the upper quarter of the cliff, and for that she'd call her first try a success; though she did turn her eyes upwards to see if the offensive part of the maneuver had hit any of it's numerous marks.
Luthe - December 31, 2011 06:44 AM (GMT)
A pittance! A trifle! No beast could rule the dragon. He had had enough, but still Eylon was reluctant to take his human form and sacrifice the defenses that his natural body granted. He spewed deadly breath, but struck nothing in vain attempts to frighten the mottled creatures away. The climbed across his back and dug in their talons, peeling away one or two blood-slimed scales so that they could anchor themselves down and withstand his thrashing. He roared again, knocking one attacker from the air in front of him using nothing but the force of the sound. He needed to become more mobile. He needed to be able to reach them, but he couldn't as long as they hid along the fins of his back. Eylon decided his resolve to shift his size and become the shape of a man. He rolled his eyes back and started to pull the strings in his heart that would activate the transformation.
Then, the smell of embers. He smelled fire, and magic. It kicked up dust and smoke as it scorched the ground and alighted in the feathers or the bloody birds. They screeched and began to die. There was a difference between them, true fire and that summoned by wizards across Redemption. Magic flame churned like water, spinning and pouring along with a mild twisting current. It was evoked from that strange energy, but the eb of it, and the calm, ordered smell stuck these fires well outside what a dragon could produce. Natural fire was much more violent. It consumed because it was hungry by nature. Magic did not devour fuel in the same way. The aggression was forced by the conjuration into the swath of spellwork that washed over his body and the owlkins.
It ate at them. He tasted it in his mouth. False heat scored his scaled, but did not cook him like a slab of meat. He shrugged away the better part of it, much to the dismay of the dying aven trying with no small work of desperation to douse themselves in dirt upon the ground.
He stretched his wings and expelled the remaining birds from his back with a mighty gust, and he pulled in a long hot lung full of magic and air, sucking the fire through his nostrils and into his body. Elyon rose up from where he lay and stomped the life from two more birds with methodical indifference. He raised up enough to pull almost all of the magic from the area in one breath, stretching his chest like a toad to hold the enormous load.
Once more, Elyon focused the strings of his heart, and started to transform. The fire in his chest converted to a scalding red energy. He took the magic fire and redoubled its violent tendencies, making a substance more viscous and insatiable than before. There was smoke and light gathering around him, and his form became completely lost in it. The birds kept up their noise. Some boiled within the mass of energy.
In one brilliant, circular release of darkened flame, Elyon expelled the energy, annihilating all of the aven still standing on a level plane to him. Those that were struggling to fly away could escape if they wanted. They would likely pass to infection from the terrible wounds inflicted by the magic and his own breath. Someone had given him the power, making it easy to expel the beasts. Someone was out there and had cast the spell.
Smoke rose into the night, vanishing into the moonlight and dispersing into the trees. Elyon was human now in appearance. The runes that riddled his body writhed and twinkled before becoming whole and calming to their desired place upon him. Molten orange eyes scanned the woodlands. He smelled something below, and looked down from his high perk on the cliff to see a dark figure clinging to the ledge. He couldn't make out more than that, but he spoke to it as if this person were an ally, for now.
"Do you require any help?"
An ally, but one that he was more than less disinterested in, much like his aven assailants. Dragons were proud, and his breed specifically could be ruthless, and most other creatures were below him. Eylon would show appreciation where it was due to get along with the lesser masses, but he couldn't shake the patronizing tone. Not yet in his short lifetime. He had not learned respect or patience for those outside of his dragonflight.
Dory - January 1, 2012 01:19 AM (GMT)
The offensive part of the attack had been a picture of both perfection and utter failure; all at once. It didn't look like any of the varmints had been completely incinerated; but more than a few of them had caught flame, and she could almost make out the outline of a rising dragon past the edge of the cliff. She made a mental note, before the flames came redoubled and the birds she didn't really care about began to drop like smouldering rain. Heat up, pressure down. It wasn't the first time she'd come to that conclusion; but hey, it was the pressure part she was good at.
When she wasn't diving for the edge of a cliff.
Speaking of which.
Bringing her gaze back to the rock in front of her, she jammed the spike tipping her boot in to the stone. She held the position for a moment, checking the subtleties of her balance (and the grace she very much lacked) before she risked locking her other foot in place.
She didn't even look up when the guy asked if she needed help. He wasn't -really- asking; kinda like how she hadn't -really- saved him. Neither one of them were really concerned with the other's well being, so why fake it?
Granted, the offering would have pissed her off a couple weeks ago. She was Freya Fucking Hamilton, did she -look- like she needed pity? There were cultures in which her name was synonymous with the -devil-, for crying out loud-- what did they not get?
Ah, but how drastically things changed when she had something more important to worry about. Like the fact that there was a strange dragonkin between herself and the children, at the moment. Easy fix.
She released the rock above her head, and as the spikes began to slip-- their intention leaning more toward kicking people than any means of support-- she keyed the blink ring and vanished.
Not for long. She was behind him, albeit at something of a distance, in an instant; and still moving. She lifted Edmund's blade again, eyes narrowing suspiciously as she trained it's fine edge to point straight between the man's eyes; and strode toward him. Probably not a good idea, considering (what was left of) the bird carcasses at her feet, and the thinning smog lingering over the site of the direct combination of their potentials. She was pretty willing to bet that neither one of them had really even been trying-- this would be nothing in comparison to a direct clash.............. but she was Freya. Purebane. The abomination. Utter devastation, where it was warranted, was her idea of fun. This one might've even been a challenge.
A predatory grin tugged at the corner of her lips.
"You're a human that just came upon a lioness and her cubs. React."
Luthe - January 1, 2012 08:41 AM (GMT)
The ledge crumbled, and the person vanished. Assumptions drew easy lines that this was the wizard that he had been looking for. It had escaped, but that meant nothing for his purposes. The birds were gone, and that was enough that he could find a place to rest the night and let his wounds scab. He turned slowly, all the time in the world to waste, and nothing exceptional to change that pace, and adjusted the heavy stone shackle around his wrist. At the end of the motion, he had come around, but instead of a blank forest's edge, there was the person, now discernible as woman.
Sword tip aimed to strike a line between his brow, ready to pierce the soft spot between his horns where the bone was thin just above the bridge of his nose, the dragon made no move to directly engage or escape her as she made her approach. Indifference, as always, was the larger insult. With luck, she would get the point that she was small, and she would resolve to flee. After all, they had no quarrel until the sword had come in to play.
"You are not a lion. I am not a human. It's so like your race to make irrational claims without even blinking and eye to what's in front of you." Elyon was making the same mistake of misjudging her too soon. It wasn't a safe call to guess that all magicians were human, though in the last two centuries, especially since the fall of Nor'sys, they dominated the art. His sense of smell told him nothing but wisps of information about her. He was not so adept as a mutt in that regard. A dog having stronger qualities than a dragon.
He dismissed his own joke. There was no one else around to appreciate it.
"I stirred the birds, and now it seems I've stirred the men and their wives as well. Protect your children. I have no interest in them. I've come to this place for other reasons." And then he thought that she might be able to help. A native could know something about the dragon that lived in these mountains shadowing the volcano.
He had no knowledge of their customs, here, and only parses of experience with humans at all to begin with. He changed the subject as easily as possible, but his mannerisms, depending, could very well seem off.
"I hunger and am looking for shelter." This was only partially true.
Dory - January 1, 2012 07:49 PM (GMT)
((Last one, and then I'll quit spam posting... Sorry Alucard. ^^;; Inspiration for Freya's been on the high end of things for a while... what can I say?))
She simply stared at him for a moment, demonic golden eyes narrowing incredulously as she let the dragonkin talk. So like her kind-- and what was 'her' kind, specifically? She might have liked to meet another, if such a figure existed; and stirred up the men and their wives? It took her a moment to figure out how such a statement was even relevant-- because her form was female?
Her grin broadened in to a vicious smirk as, sharply, she withdrew the blade as abruptly as she had called the mark.
His words were ignorant, but such things came at the cost of the holder-- not the apparently afflicted; and it wasn't as though she wasn't used to it. Under-estimation was among the most convenient of trends which followed her, and the single most amusing when push finally came to shove. Besides, maybe he wasn't so wrong after all-- maybe she was just a housewife on the rag.
"We have plenty of both." She finally answered, letting the blade rest in the sheath at her hip. Ignorant, but innocent; and that made his well being a concern. All the same, she didn't feel like correcting him-- not just yet. It'd be funnier when her world did it for her.
"But there are ground rules. Should something happen, we will fight to defend you. I expect the same courtesy. If you absolutely -must- talk in front of Fesseln, I suggest you do it respectfully. He gets touchy; especially when it comes to me. Don't pet the dog unless she comes to you: she'll bite your hand off; and -lastly-..."
She paused, lifting her hands to start on the buckles of her gauntlets as the smirk faded, and she looked him over once more; wondering what other reasons he might have had for a presence in North Cliff. There weren't many that she could think of, but then again, she wasn't exactly educated in the ways of Redemption. Fesseln would have ideas, but she had one concern and one alone.
"If you so much as lay a finger on either of the children: I'll be figuring out precisely what the blood of a Dragon tastes like, before you even remember that I exist. Nevermind whether or not I'm behind you. In the shadows. In the rafters. In the trees. I'm little. I could be anywhere, at any given time."
The first of the gauntlets slid from her hand, and she latched it to the designated clip upon her hip. Taking two purposeful steps toward him, she let the smile fall entirely from her lips, and the gravity of her words wipe the twinkle from her eyes. She seemed older, suddenly; seasoned, and self aware. There was no question in her expression, but neither was there hostility.
"It doesn't matter how big or scary you very well may be, here. I don't take my charge lightly."
And it was over. Albeit somewhat sheepishly, the smile began to return as she extended the newly bared hand. "I'm Freya. Pleasure's all mine, trust me."
Alucard - January 3, 2012 07:23 AM (GMT)
The young man before him asked him the same question in return. What was he doing out alone in the woods? Ken's expression stayed cold as he thought of his reasons for being out like this. He was hunting as well but his prey was more elusive and might not even be in the same area. He wiped the thought from is mind quickly though as he began to answer the young man.
"I am just a traveler seeking to find something. You could say I am hunting myself, and I have been for years. Now you said something a partner and your family up at a cabin. Are you sure they aren't going to mind a guest at this hour?" Part of Ken, the part that was his mask disliked being with people, yet another part yearned for company.
Ken then heard the the roar of a large creature and some bright flashes in the treeline. By the sound of it there was a fight going on near by and whatever it was, was not happy. Looking back at the kid he spoke again. "I think it would be best if we head towards your family kid something big and nasty is out here." With that Ken began to head in the direction Aiden had been heading when he first stopped him.
As he set out he heard more roars and flashes, but they soon died off and stopped entirely. This meant one of two things either what it was had finally stopped, or it was far enough away from them they could no longer tell. Either way Ken wanted to get this kid to his family and find out if his path had truly gone cold. Maybe he would get lucky and find out some rumors about some other demons he could track down and pummel.
Luthe - January 3, 2012 07:34 PM (GMT)
Dragon, she called him. Dragon he was. While he continued to assume her (to him) apparent nature as human, based on her speech, size, and shape. She seemed to rightly guess this time at the truth of the slender man before her. Perceptive, she might be called by her kind. However, he begged as to why it would ever have been a question at all. Dragons took the guise of humans. She had seen him as a dragon. It only took her a collection of moments for her brain to catch up with her eyes. Initially she had called him "human". She had discovered better now. That's all that mattered. He knew that humans were the dumbish sort. There wasn't a point to repeating it over and over in his own head to only himself.
Elyon looked at her hand for longer than he should have, long enough to let her feel the weight of her own appendage, but eventually he took it. Shaking hands was a sign of mutual agreement among the intelligent animal races. She had put her sword away, so he would return her sentiment at least as far as to make the small pact that she had asked of him during his stay.
"Thank you," he responded finally.
"I understand the human custom of hospitality," he said, and sounded, for the greater part, sincere. Dragons kept to themselves and their kin, didn't ask for help from lesser beasts, and didn't expect to be bothered when the same beasts had woes of their own. Once rulers of the planet, they had not forgotten their all-superseding heritage. Elyon had not forgotten. He had learned how to walk among them in relative harmony, though, and that was a skill that his father's father had not possessed. A skill was a skill, even if Elyon wrinkled his nose at using it.
And then another cultural phenomena that didn't exist among his people: the exchange of names.
"I am Elyon. I hail from the gold dragonflight."
(OOC: We'll move at your pace, Miss Dory. Please move Elyon if you decide to jump time/space to the cabin.)
Dory - January 4, 2012 12:25 AM (GMT)
Ken's answer brought a smile back to the boy's lips, and he nodded very slightly. A hunter, like Freya, and with no signs of hostility? Even better.
"No one'll mind. We're kinda nocturnal." he answered the concern as he tossed his head, shoving a bit of scraggly blond hair from his eyes before he heard the dragon-scream and froze entirely, eyes growing wide. He mouthed a curse, gaze going immediately over his shoulder-- Aliciel!-- before the man spoke again.
"Yeah." he answered again, though this time his voice was quiet. Meek. If one were to look closely, they might have noted that he was shaking, but for the moment he didn't budge. Where -was- she? Oh, he was going to get it if he went back without her; and he didn't even particularly want to. Out of all of them, Aiden was the weakest, and the most familiar with the dangers of loneliness; but that didn't mean he didn't have his own strengths. Yeah, they went mostly toward gutting fish and making clothes, but the concept of 'no man left behind' was one which had drawn near to his heart.
He looked back toward Ken, already heading off in the direction of the shack, and balled his hands in to fists at his sides. This, like every other damned time under Freya's care, was no time to be meek, but he didn't know what was out there.
Swallowing, he forced his hands to relax, and he had even taken a step, opened his mouth to begin the word, "Wait", when the sillouette broke through the trees.
A shrike-- not big, but big enough to crunch the smaller of the boughs from his path-- came in full gallop toward him. He lifted his hands, instinctively shielding his face as powerful claws dug in to earth, forcing the dragon's momentum to stop and spraying a wave of dirt over the boy. The head turned, smouldering vermillion eyes ignoring Ken entirely to focus on Aiden as he lowered his arms.
"Around fifty paces back." The boy spoke quickly, and continued before the head could turn to question further. "He's a hunter. We're moving for shelter." before he stepped out of the way, and the dragon bounded on without him.
"Let's go." He suggested, shaking his head and jogging to catch up to Ken.
Freya's grin could only widen further as this dragon seemed to put his best efforts in to being polite. He was still under the impression that she was human, though she would have thought the quip about sucking his blood might have given her away. It was almost cute-- in about the same way that a puppy was cute, until it took a massive dump on your pillow.
"The human custom of hospitality won't do you much good, with us." A fair warning was only fair, and the 'man' she was looking at was no puppy. A steaming pile of shit was the least of her concerns.
Withdrawing her hand, she spun on her heel to move back toward the forest. She looked back only once, to be sure that he would follow, before she cast her gaze forward and sped her pace.
"We can only offer safety for a short time. The children leave at dawn; and I, at sunset; but you're more than welcome to use the house once we're gone. I'll have no use for it."
Or much of anything else, for that matter. She did her best to ignore the twinge of pain brought with the words, to keep herself grounded to the moment and the trekk, but it was no use. She knew the truth: That she had directly attacked a God, that the Devil was only steps behind her, that she had shed every tie she once thought she'd had. She'd have use for nothing, because she'd have need of nothing. She'd have need for nothing, because she had nothing-- was nothing, or at least would be. Just as soon as she got the children safely boarded on a ship bound to somewhere-- anywhere else. They were everything.
For all her strength, and all her fury; she was powerless to protect them. That hurt the worst.
The shack wasn't far. Though abandoned for the moment, the fire still roared near the middle of the clearing. Where the wolf had gone was anyone's guess, but Freya wasn't overly concerned.
Alucard - January 4, 2012 03:06 PM (GMT)
Ken froze in his movement and dropped into a defensive stance as he felt the wind rush past him. Spinning in place on the balls of his feet he spun back towards the boy to see the brief exchange. When the dragon bound off again and the boy started to come jogging towards him he turned back towards the cabin. Once the boy had caught up to him he matched the boys jogging pace until they had reached the clearing with the fire and cabin.
When he got closer he could see at least one other person standing in the clearing and decided it would b best to slow his pace and not cause a stir. This didn't mean he would be letting his guard down it simply meant he wouldn't be caught off guard. Never can be too safe in this world he had learned that the hard way. While the boy seemed nice for all he knew he could be walking into a den of vampires or something.
As he broke the tree line he spotted a women and waited for Aiden to handle the introduction unless otherwise asked. Ken didn't care to much for small talk if he could help it. Things also seemed to go better when the person who extended the invitation did the explaining.
Luthe - January 6, 2012 12:32 PM (GMT)
She led, but Elyon would not follow. As he saw her certainly not as his better, and hardly even his equal, he walked with her an arm's reach away, but side to side. She was out of his striking range. Realistically, that didn't matter. He could crush her in a moment if he had the disposition.
Such a response to her did not exist within him based on their interactions at this point in their relationship, so she truly had nothing to fear. Being the benevolent drake he was, Elyon tried to make her comfortable. She had offered him things that would be greatly appreciated by any weary traveler and some. Her willingness to aid a stranger was juvenile and stupid. Still, the higher powers were charged with protecting the stupid and the meek. She was playing her role as the tender mortal that she was, eager to better the world through compassion, and he commended her for that, at least. He would save her children if the chance arose.
Such a bother.
He felt a headache coming on, and pinched the space between his snowy brows.
"I've come seeking Peddrenthstrozmo. He is the dragon who claims these mountains. Humans have named him Volcanon."
They came to the clearing, then, and he caught a whiff of something on the wind. Cottage hovel and roaring hearth forgotten, and with the woman now under deep scrutiny, he had to avoid giving her a gaze that one could describe only as a direct threat. Had he stumbled upon another mark before he ever reached Mount Volcano?
It wasn't the smell of a dragon like Peddrenthstrozmo, who had the stink of rock and flame. It was the smell of highly concentrated arcanum. A white shrike drake from the coasts of Recel.
"You share your home with one of my kind. I would speak with him now."
Roush - January 7, 2012 06:55 AM (GMT)
A dark fog rolled through North Cliff on this particular night. It carried with it an ominous chill that caused most to clear the streets, though it seemed some were drawn out into it like moths to a flame. They gathered inside the city; a ragtag group of citizens. Mostly pirates and barmaids, the group grew larger and larger as more and more men and women suddenly and silently woke from their sleep or simply walked out on their jobs to become part of the eerie mob.
They brought whatever they could: swords, axes, staffs, pitchforks, bows... Even kitchen knives. Those who heeded the call of the malevolent being called Arcavia stood lifeless in the street, waiting for their master to appear.
Arcavia had already finished the rest of the set up. About a dozen people, mostly from the families of the people he summoned here, had been killed in their sleep. Each gruesome scene would be punctuated by two holes to be found later in each victims neck, made by a pair of vampire teeth.
That part wasn't really difficult. Finding some vampire teeth and fashioning an item that could hold them the same distance apart for each 'bite' was easy. Setting up each murder scene took time. Making the families witness it and see the image of the Nectara was also easy, once he got a decent image of his mark from an Abyssal Psychic who had scouted her earlier. He would leave a few witnesses behind, but take most out on a little hunt...
Outside the Cabin...
Arcavia had taken another host. Hidden in the body of a human, he would be impossible to single out unless one of them had a method of detecting his Dark Magic signature. Even then, they would only think the host was a Dark Mage, and have no way of identifying his true purpose in this little facade.
A little over 50 people of both genders and a wide age range made quiet a ruckus as they ran through the night towards the cabin. Lead there by Arcavia's mental 'suggestions', the would-be vampire hunters charged with torches and weapons raised, having finally found the dwelling of the vampire that had killed so many of their family members.
Arcavia was fully possessing one of them, who was not even aware of what was happening. The rest were lead by subtle suggestions and manipulation of through processes that helped the believe and support the 'witnesses' who would go to their deaths believing what they saw. Back in the village, some were already working with artists to draw sketches of the woman who had brutally murdered and bled their relatives dry in a frenzy fueled by blood-lust.
After all, this was Arcavia's first day back in the world of the living. It would be a productive day to set the pace for the many things to come.
"Where is she!?!?"
"In that house!!"
"We should burn it down!"
"Make her come out so we can slice her into pieces!"
Humans, by in large, just wanted an excuse for violence. Arcavia had to do so very little; the imagination of an angry mob was plenty to work with; it just needed to be directed.
A heavy set man with a large broadsword stepped forwards from the crowd and bellowed out:
"Come out vampire, or we'll burn you out!"
A woman's voice from the background:
"Your going to pay for what you did to my brother!"
The bloodstained sheets and clothes had been brought with the crowd, and were making their way around the crowd as it got more and more riled up. They slowly filled in as they began to form a semi-circle around it.
They approached the cabin from the opposite side as the boy and the Dark warrior, so they had yet to meet. Surely the two could hear everything that was screamed out by the crowd. One could wonder how the Dark warrior would react to this situation: being brought to a secluded cabin by a boy who's mother turned out to be a dangerous vampire that had apparently killed multiple people just hours ago. She could still be on a bloodlust, after all... Of course Arcavia could not plan for this. He did not even know of the warrior existence, although it was his job to make sure the boy met a tragic, painful death that would haunt Freya for the rest of her days.
The large man quickly became impatient, kicking in the door.
"There's no one here!"
"Burn it! It's tainted!"
And so they did. Arcavia was very amused. The minimal amount of effort this was taking was surprising at best. Humans were so easy to manipulate.
The crowd seemed to turn all at once to see the bane of North Cliff's existence entering eye shot.
"There she is!"
In a collective scream, the mob quickly started covering ground.
As they approached, there was some amount of reason.
"Is that her? Where are the witnesses?"
Multiple people came forwards, most not able to talk as they pointed and broke down crying, holding up the bloodied cloth and crying out for justice.
"Vampire, Vampire!" The crowd shouted as they closed in on her, now drawing weapons for the attack.
Some people's attention turn to the man she was with.
"Careful, don't trust her, she's a vampire! She killed more then ten people earlier tonight in the city, she's probably trying to get you secluded so she can do the same!"
From somewhere in the crowd of faces, one of the three or four Dark Mages whispered the word "Pestilentia". This was Arcavia, of course.
The Disease would hit first, double powered through the use of ancient techniques. It was casted alongside a wicked Madness spell, one that would last twice as long as what most Dark Mages could cast. That would set it next, though it wouldn't take long for the effects to settle in.
Now... Where was the girl?
Freya has been framed for a vampire frenzy. Some witnesses were created by the use of Manipulation, which was used again sparingly to influence the creation of a mob. They are now closing in on Freya. To be clear OOC with Al and Luthe, Arcavia has no intention of messing with either of your characters. Arcavia is hiding inside someone and doesn't intend on showing himself, using Manipulation to literally possess them and use their body to pay the price for his casting. I imagine most of the crowd is warriors though a couple dark mages and a couple regular mages are probably in the mix. The primary goal of the people is the kill Freya, they will try to show everyone else the evidence and tell them that she went on a spree, just in case you wanted to talk to one of the NPCs.
A Skull Ring-powered Disease was cast on Freya, as well as a Combat Caster charged Madness. So Disease is working and double speed and Madness lasts two post. Mwahaha. That is all.
If I got people locations wrong, let me know so I can adjust my post. I wasn't sure if the girl was near/in the cabin or not. And if I read correctly, the cabin was near the clearing... So they set it on fire then turned to see Freya there and... yeah.
Dory - January 7, 2012 08:42 PM (GMT)
((The cabin is in the clearing, facing the cliff. For the sake of placement, consider cliff-side to be six o'clock. Aiden and Ken are at the three o'clock edge of the clearing. Fesseln and Aliciel are about fifty paces behind them, still in the (completely dead) forest; which starts you in the nine o'clock position. Freya and Elyon are approaching from the six o'clock position, where there is a path leading to the cabin. To the right of the path is a large campfire surrounded by gnawed on bones, but no wolf. She's in the woods somewhere.))
((Also: It's a post. TL;DR doesn't apply here. lol Or, at least, I hope it doesn't; because this is going to be a long freaking post.))
Peddrenthstrozmo. Volcanon, by human mandate. She knew neither name, but made a mental note of both to be neatly filed next to a newer concern.
It was phrasing, just phrasing; but phrasing she knew. The dragon who claims these mountains
, like the clan who had claimed the wasteland in which Purebane had been birthed; or the vampire who had thought to claim a drug-like blood fountain as his own. Of the examples at hand, only one had survived their territorial nature, and the difference had been a simple matter of distinction. One had learned from her as she had learned from them, cocktailing her enlightenment within their own. The other?
Well. The last time she had seen Dex Shaw, he had been a pile of ribbons and pointy almost-white objects, drowned in the crimson of his own blood on her pillow.
She'd barely even finished considering the image before the dragon had spoken again-- of a second dragon presence; by which, of course, he meant Fesseln and not the Sprite nestled safely inside of her body.
"You can -speak with- -my- dragon, when he returns." She answered stiffly, by reflex and without hesitation. It was an easy statement to make, even despite the argument she knew the Shrike would have found within it. Possession was something which was understood between them and the majority of the creatures of the wild, but they'd likely never agree on precise terms. To the dragon, she was -his- rider and not the other way around; but it wasn't an easy distinction to convey.
Or one which needed expressing. The relationship they shared belonged to them, alone. No one needed to understand; least of all some random dragon who had appeared on her doorstep one night."Where is she!?!?"
The words caught her ear, and she came to a sudden, abrupt stop at the mouth of the clearing. "In that house!!""Make her come out so we can slice her into pieces!"
She was reminded that gravity existed, rather suddenly, as her knees threatened to give way from under her. She was not looking upon an unfamiliar circumstance. She was looking at a recurring nightmare.
Big sister was well.
Aiden saw the people before he had fully broken from the line of trees, and stopped dead in his tracks; sidling instinctively behind one of the trees as one hand snapped out for Ken's shirt-sleeve-- wordlessly begging him to take cover."Come out vampire, or we'll burn you out!""Your going to pay for what you did to my brother!"
He shook his head very slightly. Yes, Freya was a vampire-- but she hadn't taken an innocent life in ages. Hell, so far as he knew, she hadn't taken -any- life in ages-- so what was this?"There's no one here!"
He closed his eyes for a moment, silently praying for courage."Burn it! It's tainted!"
Was this what she had meant when she had spoken of the corruption of mankind?
_____________________________"There she is!"
Mortals were a bit slow on the uptake. So preoccupied with the little details of things, that they had no desire to see the big picture. She couldn't blame them-- it was the only way they had to survive; but it was what made them easy pickings for the top of the food chain. She looked over them, silently, as they made their way toward her-- shouting their familiar claims-- and simply let them talk.
Adrianna would lie. Xanthe would adjust the truth to include her secret motives; but for Freya, there would be no smoke-screen. She was as she was; and what was seen of her was dictated by the individual, or the puppeteer-- and thereby not her concern. If the entire world decided that it wanted a piece of her, it was the entire world that she'd take on.
She had forgotten that, once. It had taken a trial, and a pair of unexpected red hands, to remind her.
Very careful not to move, she waited for the moment of silence between their claims and their inevitable verdict to lift her own voice.
"Vampire-- among other things, but you have been mislead." Very calmly, she projected her voice, and the words, through the clearing. "Movement without hesitation marks you as guilty with your handler.""Careful, don't trust her, she's a vampire! She killed more then ten people earlier tonight in the city, she's probably trying to get you secluded so she can do the same!"
But of course.Pestilentia.
The burn of demonic rage came with a side dish of cutting pain, like needles racing through her bloodstream as she embraced the pain, and became more aware. Her pupils slitted sharply, molten golden irises seeming to spin as she made a mental mark of each, and every blood pumping artery before her.
*She knew what was coming. She knew the signature of the Abyss as well as she knew the turmoil of her own mind-- for they were one and the same, when the night came to an end. She was going to lose control. She was going to kill. Aiden and Aliciel might get caught in the crossfire. She could only hope that she had taught them well enough to survive.
Nothing was certain. The rules had changed. Were changing. Had-- had, yes, had changed. She'd embrace it. Embrace it and accept it with eyes wide open, because she had been here. Because she knew the new rules; and she knew what happened when you tried to hide.
She trembled. She could feel each scar split open to gush again as the pain localized again. Thirteen crosses blazed straight through her chest-- broad, coal black feathered wings tore from the pain without her consent. Hundreds of invasive spikes pierced through the skin at the nape of her neck, spilling the burn of lost blood over her shoulders and setting the blood still inside to boil.
She watched the hallucinations start-- or thought she watched the hallucinations start, as the spikes began to coalesce. Watched the people before her pale and brighten in to sculptures of only the purest white, with their matching grinning faces, and she embraced it. Eyes open.
It was still his voice. Still his -voice--- Damn!
but he loved to make her hurt; You'll never escape.
She knew; and she wasn't the type to hide.Live to suffer. Embrace it.
Suddenly, she reached Purebane's hilt, and tore the blade free from it's sheath to swing it over her shoulder and bury it's tip in the earth with a clap like thunder. The sonic force skated along the ground-- a semi-circle of five tiered waves rushing from ground to waist level-- for the foolishly gathered crowd. I'll chop your legs to bits.
Their matching faces were beginning to swirl; unable to decide. Xenos, Dex, Adrianna, Xanthe, Elijah, Darshe, Zaire-- they were all there. Every one of them was all of them. All of them were any one of them; but they were all white. All white. She hated... -hated- --
Lesson number five: You could tell the strength of an Abyssal by their physical pigment. A better hold on the body resulted in a more complete manifestation.
Nightfighter is in effect because it's nighttime; Sharpened Reflexes have just come under effect even though you don't actually have to key that. The first is the manifestation of her vampiric blood, and the second is caused by her demonic blood.
Asterisk marks the start of the madness effect, which could be accompanied with this
The bleeding scars part is part hallucination, part not. The ones on her chest are heavily inflamed, and the ones on her neck would look like something's trying to cut out of them, but the skin hasn't broken yet; in case someone has a reason to look that closely. The wings are real, but they don't have the mirror-shield effect at the moment. She's unconsciously charging to use dark lance; annnnd she used diffusion wave on the crowd in general.))
Luthe - January 11, 2012 05:12 AM (GMT)
(OOC: Oh, Skyrim.)
"Auu." Dragon voice; it was a power that uprooted world trees and toppled townships. With his breath, Elyon could lay a castle low, and shatter the ranks of a thousand thousand soldiers at arms. The force of his magic bore down on the villagers with bright like, but this word of power was one the invoked harmony, and not destruction. It was a gentle light, but even something gentle as a feather could down giants and men when brought to bear with the tenacity of a single feather multiplied to heights well beyond numbers.
The dragon-turned-human pulled from his chest a glowing gold orb. The orb, he looked at, and let it turn in his grasp like a living thing. Then it slithered and sunk into his hand, and where the red runes where skittering across his body, they began to change in color and their hue changed from red to gold. The power preceded all mortal races, and thereby preceded their magics, which only seemed to get weaker with time. More calculated. Primitive for their organized simplicity. What swam within him, in his heart, was much stronger. It was a magic that governed all magics, and at the very least, superseded them. Yes, now Elyon was lighting the forest, out showing the fires like a lighthouse beacon in the dark of the midnight wood.
Though it was not the dragon's responsibility to honor a pack made with mortals, or even mythical animals such as vampires, if the claims that the villagers were spouting like monkeys were true, it was his prerogative to obey his word in this situation, and considering the behavior of the human mongrel example spread out before them. The woman called Freya had instigated combat immediately. Be she a banshee or a witch, or vampire, and not a human, she should survive amidst the havoc that would soon be wrought. He had a faint hope left for her children, which he had agreed in passing to keep counted among the living.
Elyon took a deep breath and pushed up a fire from deep within his body, letting the heat and the power travel from his feet, to stomach, to lungs, and bulge into his nasal cavity, from where he released the energy and let it spin and spiral around him on the outside until he was covered from heat to toe in golden glow and wreathed in orange flame. And then he unleashed another word.
Thus spake Elyon, calling command and raw force to his aid. He blitzed across the clearing using only one step to move the distance, past Freya, and into the fray, more than less indiscriminate as to her precise proximity to him. When he arrived, a white orb was summoned to his hand, engulfed and devoured it, and when he took a knee and struck the ground, the light and force that came forth from the dragon at the center was enough to throw down two short trees and rend the ground shrubbery and loose earth and stone from a twenty foot space in all directions, leaving a barren, flat surface where there used to be human foes. Despite the incredible physical force, the attack had not set anything ablaze, though the dragonkin still burned with a bright gold and orange ferocity unmatched by any other brilliance in the forest that night.
Freya had asked him to fight her battles before all of this. Humans naturally tucked themselves away behind the strong. Elyon was strong, even if the woman with the magic sword was herself a meek creation of the gods.
Roush - January 12, 2012 12:15 AM (GMT)
The original shockwave let off from Freya barely had a chance to do anything before the energy blast annihilated the posse Arcavia had rounded up. He saw what the energy did to those around him, and so he ripped himself out of the body he was in before using it to throw up a wall of Dark Energy ((Unholy Armor)). The amount of energy coming towards him hit the shield and shattered it within a second or two, killing the woman that Arcavia had been using as a host instantly before overwhelming her body.
Arcavia was already falling back into a Dark Portal that would take him back to the nearby city. Through the carnage, he saw the man who had just released so much power in a single move. The dark spirit was leaving, but before he did, he released a horrid flurry of spells upon the energy-wielder in a single word.
Between the casting and the bit of energy that struck the being before the portal closed behind him, Arcavia was hurting.
When he reached the city, he garbed a homeless man, and used his body to cast Blight upon himself until he was healed up, though the man was almost dead.
After he had a moment to think, he was furious. All those plans... Well, it wasn't for nothing. Freya would have quite a time handing the man now. Both were now under the effects of Dark Magic.
Double-powered Disease, Taint, and Combat Caster-powered Madness casted on Elyon.
Nothing was disengaged, so Freya should still be diseased and has another post of Madness.
Dory - January 13, 2012 12:50 AM (GMT)
((Never played it. Not a fan of first person pov+midieval weaponry, and the 3rd person pov sucks pretty royally in the Morrowind series. Got to level seven in Oblivion before I wrote off the series as a whole.))
Split seconds or eternities. She couldn't tell the difference. There was no pain to set the beat-- the rhythm-- the pattern-- inevitable-- another change-- When did it change--- Couldn't keep up----
They were there, and then they weren't-- or there were lots and now there was one-- or... something. Something! They had been there, hadn't they? Yes, yes, they had been there. Memories didn't lie. They didn't. They--
She was crumbling where she stood. Her hands fell away from Purebane's hilt as she staggered back, dark energies pulsing and oozing from every round indentation marring both sides of her neck and shoulders. Her hands gripped at her head as though to hold it together, fingers knotting in her hair as she swayed.
She couldn't. Couldn't! There was too much-- too much blood, too many lies, too many principles to rearrange-- couldn't hold it together!
But there was one-- there was still one, couldn't forget-- one was still in range.
Suddenly, the shakes stopped. One in range meant that she had an outlet. One in range-- one problem out of millions that she just needed to smash. She could smash. Smashing was the easy part. But what if she couldn't smash? The madness-- Adrianna-- Nothing was as it seemed, not even between the lines-- but Xenos-- Xenos was dead, wasn't he? She had killed him, hadn't she? Memories-- fuck!-- what could she remember?
She dropped to her knees. This wasn't embracing. They had thrown her off-- those bastards!-- and now she was fighting back and the only person she was fighting was herself-- herself-- and she knew she couldn't take it, no one would take it, no one could! That was why she had to send the children away, why she killed everything that she touched-- alone--
Stop. Just-- stop!
Hell didn't stop, why should she? So it could blindside her? Yeah, well, fuck them! All at once, the energy engulfed her neck and fled like smoke for thinner air. Her hand caught it's middle point as, sharply, she rose and the shadows condensed in to a single spear against her palm. She'd rip them in to shreds. Tear them apart-- piece by piece, feed them the pieces, make them see-- make them know-- make them understand--
She couldn't see them, not even the one who had been standing there only seconds (eons?) before. There was no one, and she was surrounded by severed arteries-- not tree's-- and she dropped the lance, and she spun around-- Where did they-- but there was no one until she faced forward again--
and saw her reflection. And choked.
Aiden's arms curled against his chest as he squeezed his eyes shut, focusing on the alphabet, on counting, on anything but what was happening behind him. He'd been told that this was commonplace, but this was his first time witnessing it. He could still remember how stern Freya's face had become as she had spoken the words running on repeat through his mind: You stay quiet, you stay hidden; and you do not approach me-- no matter what.
She would come get him when it was safe to come out.
But his eyes snapped right back open with the first sound of a twig snapping that he heard, and he stared desperately through the tree's for the source. It was only a heartbeat before Aliciel's crimson hair caught his attention, and his breath stopped. He didn't dare take a step-- as it would make noise-- but lifted both his hands toward her and the man who couldn't have been far behind. Three more crunching footsteps brought them near enough to see the signal, and they stopped abruptly.
Glancing between each other, Fesseln let out only the smallest of sighs before he slipped the deer carefully from his shoulder, and put it to rest, gently, on the ground at his feet.
He stepped gingerly toward the boy, though his eyes were focused well beyond him and in to the clearing.
"Who's that?" Vermillion gaze shifting back toward Aiden, he whispered the question as though it were a curse. Of course, the boy only shook his head and gave a heavy shrug.
"Helpful little shit aren't you." he grumbled, but didn't settle in.
It wasn't until the illusion had faded that she regained her lost sense of self; and realized the full extents of the damage she had taken. Strips of flesh, unaccustomed to energy of such purity, had scorched and burned away; cauterized before they had a chance to ooze. She registered the pain only for as long as it might have taken a horse to note a troublesome fly upon his back-- preoccupied with what she still couldn't quite grasp.
The threats were gone, but Elyon was still standing there. Logic informed her that he must have taken care of them-- quickly, and without a mess to tell her how-- but she wasn't prepared to believe it. How could she? There was only one word to describe such a conclusion, and that word was preposterous-- yet she could find no other answer. He had helped her?
No. Why would he? No one helped nothing, not without a damned good reason; and she knew that no one ever kept promises anymore. Not when they were made to her-- and she would never have expected them to.
Luthe - January 14, 2012 01:27 PM (GMT)
End it quickly; let them know that they never had a chance. A dragon's interest went only so far as to secure victory over the lesser races, and then they were all but the tail end of forgotten again. The need to grief drove humans against their own kind, and gave them the courage to stand up before gods and dragons and declare themselves worthy of a voice. Elyon had shown that his voice was stronger than that of twenty bleating humans. He would pray for no interruptions from them in the future. Hopefully they had learned their lesson. When the humans kept to their farms and hovels, they could be ignored most easily. Out of the way of righteous entities such as dragons was where they belonged.
He let his power flow out into the ground through his fist, and stayed still on one knee until he had drained himself of the excess. Except for the initial shock, what he was releasing now was harmless and soft, serving to do nothing more than raise the night time temperature in the general vicinity, making the forest feel as it would on a warm summer evening. The trees soaked up what they could, hungry for raw nutrients, and took on a golden hue that quickly faded as the world settled again.
"Aido doro." The ringed energy he had launched dissipated like rolling smoke, and Elyon was still in control. Magic had been spun, and it wasn't the friendly dance of fire across his scales this time. It was a disease, like underrot beneath his skin and a cry in the recesses of his mind that kept getting louder and louder, but at the moment was still at a safe distance.
The magic was coming for him, though. A seeping justification of the attempts made here tonight against the woman, Freya. There was something among those villagers more than met his senses. Torches and jeers were no excuse for the madness that overcame the woman, or the terrible things that sprouted from her back and decayed her living skin. Evil souls of the dark at work, performing their ritualistic disfiguration of her own flesh and spirit. He felt the sitrrings, and the runes along his body distorted. Orbs and shafts of golden light that flowed across him like veins through an animal bubbled with the beat of his heart. The yelling that pounded in his mind grew louder, pulsing with the beats. Before it was a quiet annoyance. Now it wasn't unbearable, but reaching higher levels of obstinate distraction. He tried focusing on the flow of energy in him to stave off the infection brought on by dark magics, but that sound... He couldn't get a word in with it crashing around in his skull.
Specifically, the word he had shouted first before the attack had been a word to inspire harmony between he and the elements. Most magic, most natural forces would curb around him, or lend themselves to his own strength. It was just that this sort of corruption was more than he could bear. Instigated by an evil soul, set loose to tear at his insides, Elyon wasn't prepared for this sort of attack.
He didn't even know when it had happened, but just that he was now losing himself to the darker powers. He chattered his teeth as if he was very cold, but really he felt his head begin to sweat, so he clenched his maw shut, and closed his eyes. rather than let the disease overtake him completely, he took down his defenses and let the magic mingle with his power. His dragon soul was far too much for meager magics like these to overcome. But this would set him back. It was a gambit to sustain his body, fulfilled by sacrificing some of his energy. The greater of his two selves would fight against this madness, while the lesser, his form, would drift to sleep until he recovered.
The golden runes skittered across him, bubbled and broiled, and then, injected with the corruption that afflicted him, faded to purple, a symbol that the two essences had been joined.
The pounding pulled away, and he was alone in his thoughts. he had not been overcome by the darkness. He would not be eaten alive by the devouring plague. It was the safest sacrifice he could make. Who would harm a sleeping dragon?
"Cascade... Into... Darkness," he murmured.
Elyon collapsed, drawing shallow breaths with a nose and face full of dirt.
Alucard - January 14, 2012 07:58 PM (GMT)
Ken had watched the whole situation unfold before him and had placed himself defensively between the mob and the boy. He could feel the dark magic in the air as he was trained in a place tainted by it. This same dark magic had been merged with his martial arts to increase the power when used properly. Then he watched the other man obliterate the gathered mob with such powerful words that it caused a wave of wind to rush past him.
After the wind past and things stopped both of them seemed to collapse and two more entered the clearing. Ken was no healer but he knew how to apply basic first aid and figured he would offer his aid as he walked in towards them. "Well this certainly was interesting circumstances to meet under. Is there anything I might be able to do to help here?" Ken wasn't sure of what he really could do so turned to the only three still standing. "This happen often does it? The angry mob part I mean?"
Dory - January 15, 2012 09:33 PM (GMT)
Freya had accidentally opened a petting zoo somehow. This was the only logical explanation.
She watched in silence as the dragonkin collapsed in the clearing before her, and jerked in to movement a bit more sluggishly than had been her intent. Long strides brought her toward the unrecognized enigma, eyes narrowing with irritation as she gave the effort which shouldn't have been necessary to close the distance. She was no stranger to weakness, much less that which came from the depths of the twisted heart of her lying counterpart; but it didn't mean she had to like it. It also-- sure as all hell on earth, or below, or above, or in between, or-- didn't mean that she would let it stand in her way. Whatever the reason, the man who had fallen had been the one to defend her; and his face wasn't staying in the fucking dirt-- not while she still moved.
Her golden eyes flickered toward Ken as he approached, offering some glint of complete and total disbelief before she knelt (Read: let herself fall to her knees) beside Elyon, and shook her head.
She had never actually wanted help, or protection. So long as one could stay the fuck out of her way, they were golden in her eyes. As far as... whatever the dragon had done, she couldn't say. Her experience with 'kindness' was limited to a grand total of two men: one who didn't have much of a choice, and one who didn't realize what she was until it was far too late. Granted, that count didn't factor in the Shrike hovering in the shadows, but he was another matter entirely.
"I'm a vampire, didn't you hear?" Her voice escaped tight lips as she looked, almost apologetically, back up toward Ken. "And I was demonkin, first. I'd be worried if it -didn't- happen on a regular basis."
A sigh; and a weakly choked laugh before she shook her head very slightly and leaned forward-- hesitated.
"He needs a healer." Never mind herself. That part didn't matter. They wouldn't have much time before the rest of the outpost realized that their brothers, fathers, mothers, and sisters weren't going to come back. Corruption had a life of it's own, and once the seed had been planted, it would only be a matter of time before it contaminated everything it touched. Cutting the first stem had only released the toxin, she knew-- and she refused to let it cost these innocents that she had found by chance, any more than it already had.
Gingerly, she would grasp the dragonkin's shoulders to roll him on to his back, hoping (in the very very back of her mind) that she wasn't about to be incinerated as she did.
Fesseln would be the one to breach the line of trees without the spoken permission that the children required, dragging one hand through his wild dark hair. Such careful tenderness didn't come from his rider often; and from this, he could understand that the trespasser had been part of a solution. He clearly didn't like it, but he knew better than to get between Freya and someone she had deemed worthy of helping, and expect to survive the experience.
"If we're going to discuss," He spoke softly, glancing between his very small 'abomination', and Ken. "We should do it while we're moving. The bitch behind this doesn't send people who give up."
Alucard - January 16, 2012 05:05 AM (GMT)
Ken watched as the women finally seemed to be getting control of herself and seemed to ignore her own injuries. He listened to her and his whole body tensed for a moment almost dropping into a combat stance when she admitted to being a demonkin. Ken really couldn't give two shits about being a vampire but demons were kinda becoming his prey of choice and his specialty. But he had seen the look on the kids face and somehow knew that this wasn't one he needed to deal with.
Instead he tightened his fist making it crack before throwing his fingers wide open. "So your Vampire I don't give two shits lady. I don't care what your blood is to be honest as long as aren't attacking me." This was only partially true and he had left out the demonkin part on purpose. Not all demons were mindless kills or cunning villains....but most damn sure where.
He then watched the other 'man' step forward and talk about talking while they walked. "Well seeing as I assume that mob was from the town I saw I would say yeah we do need to move. You folks gather up what you need and I will help you carry mister incineration over there." With that Ken walked over and knelt down so he could left one of Elyon's arms over his shoulder and drag him by himself if he had too.
He wanted to get out of the area and find out some information soon. Maybe sticking around with this chick might give him the leads he sought. At the very least it would lead to some excitement....
Dory - January 16, 2012 07:54 PM (GMT)
He didn't care? Huh. That was new, too. Maybe it wasn't a petting zoo, maybe it was a rift in the time-space continuum... or whatever it was that Xanthe kept ranting on about. Or maybe she was dreaming-- but she doubted that. She was fairly certain she'd never had a dream in which everyone everywhere wasn't trying to kill her for some damned reason or another; even before she had first been bitten.
Then again, she was also fairly certain there had never been a point in her existence when someone -wasn't- trying to turn her in to a corpse. Moments, perhaps, during her time with the Sash-- but then boredom and intolerance had become the newer and more volatile threat.
She wrinkled her nose, almost childishly as Fesseln also stooped to lift her from the ground and throw her arm over his neck; but didn't bother to put up a fight.
"Don't worry." She leveled her burning gaze on Ken again, though the very corner of her lips tipped upwards in a cross between a downright devilish smirk, and an amused grin. He'd said her blood didn't bother him, yes, but that didn't make it any less fun to fuck with him about it. "I only kill people who deserve it. Murderers, rapists, child abusers, wife beaters-- mostly wife beaters. We have a history."
Fesseln's eyes twitched toward her. "Are you delusional?"
"I might be." Head rolling on her shoulders, she turned her grin toward the Shrike, "Are you supposed to have three noses?"
Sighing, he pinched the false skin between his eyes, and glanced over his shoulder. "Aiden!" He shouted irritably, "Gather what's left of the stuff. Aliciel-- hunt something-- Please."
Freya scowled, head falling forward again. "Buzzkill." She grumbled. "Fun-thief."
She shrugged, or rather, shrugged as best as she could; which did more to make it harder to hold her up, than to display the lack of concern that she was attempting to convey; but she didn't particularly care about that, either. It would have destroyed the point.
Alucard - January 16, 2012 08:30 PM (GMT)
Ken just shook his head at the scene before him. "Yes this will be very entertaining indeed." He then hoisted the unconscious man over his shoulder like a sack of potatoes and stood up with out so much as a grunt. "For someone that packs such a strong power you sure are a light weight fella." With that Ken followed the other pair and waited for the supplies to be gathered.
"So where exactly is it you plan to go and do at this point? I mean that town might sound out people to look for you in a day or so. Travelling with wounded will slow us down if we don't cover our tracks they could be on us again by nightfall tomorrow if they have a lick of sense between them. Well that or a decent tracker and person in charge." Ken was just making small talk at the moment he figured the town wouldn't really send more to die so recklessly but who knows with people. He also figured he would wait to ask his questions till such a time as the female who he had yet to be introduced to was in a more solid mindset.
"By the way name is Ken."
Dory - January 17, 2012 12:49 AM (GMT)
Delusional though she may have been, Ken raised a good question; and Freya didn't have much of a choice but to answer it. Fingers gripping at Fesseln's shoulder, she made her grip more secure, and sighed.
"Any other port." She answered with a quiet, almost unnoticeable wince, and looked toward the rubble of a house. Ever the obedient one, Aiden was already picking through the ash; looking for anything he could salvage-- though she knew there wouldn't be much. "The attacks won't stop. Tonight, they came for me. Tomorrow, the children."
Trailing off, she wet her lips and swallowed; resisting the familiar urge to take just another taste of false sustenance.
"They're fragile." And so was her voice. Her gaze fell to the ground, eyes growing moist with emotion she didn't have the strength to deny. "And as long as they're by my side, they're also at risk. I can't..."
"Let's get to a healer first, huh?" Thankfully, Fesseln interrupted. "You're not going to last long with that poison in you; especially not the way you handle things."
Alucard - January 17, 2012 01:09 AM (GMT)
Ken listened to what was said and could swear he heard guilt and weakness oozing from the vampires voice. They needed to head out and soon and she needed help. "Well do either of you happen to know where we can find a healer cause I don't. I would also be willing to make a slight donation if it would help her get back on her feet and she didn't get greedy. I have plenty of blood to spare."
With this Ken held out his left arm and shrugged. He wasn't to worried about it he had come close to death before and from what he had learned one bite wasn't enough to turn a person but being drained dry was. He also figured that if he helped her now she might feel more inclined to help in in the future when he started asking questions or needed it. Favors in advance lead to favors in the future, or so he always believed.
"What ever you folks are going to do though make it fast so we can start moving." He kept his arm out just in case and waited to be introduced to people at anytime seeing as he still didn't know anyone but the kids names.
Dory - January 17, 2012 01:39 AM (GMT)
It had been so long since Freya had fed on an innocent.
She considered doing it, now. The offer was a solid one, and the instant the arm had been displayed was the instant she had started making a mark of the veins hidden below his skin. If she squinted, she could almost see the glow provided by her own mind, mixing with the more solid form of reality to give her a map. She could almost feel the steady thud of his heart-- or what she could imagine was his heart and not the pulse of the dragon who supported her; and very nearly released all semblance of control to reach for it.
But she did not.
She remembered every moment; every offering; every theft; Every stranger who had taken from her, just what this man offered now. She remembered every moment of agony she had spent alone, lapping what chilled blood she could from a metal pan, and taking the rest from rats-- walking, starving, by Darshe's side; but even then she had never attacked him, never run the risk of making him so uncomfortable.
Lot of good it had done, but the restraint wasn't borne from him-- merely exercised in his name.
She did reach out, however, to brace her smaller palm against his, and shake the offered hand.
"I feed on thieves. On animals; but never the innocent. Thank you for the sentiment. It means more than you may know." Pausing, she realized that she had never once offered her name; and released the man's hand to become secure on Fesseln's shoulder again.
"I'm Freya, by the way. Freya Hamilton-Purebane. This is Fesseln. We don't have any allies, but... if I'm not mistaken, most cities have working healers. What's close? I'm..." Slowing down, adrenaline passing and giving way to uncertainty. "I'm not exactly educated when it comes to geography. Or... manners. Or... much of anything, really."
Alucard - January 17, 2012 02:41 AM (GMT)
He could see the hesitation in her eyes as she reached out and excepted the outstretched hand. Ken smiled a bit as she turned it down and introduced herself as Freya. She then went onto introduce the man as Fesseln followed by the statement of no allies. "Allies are fleeting friends tend to last a bit longer but nothing is forever." As he retracted his arm and placed it by his side.
"I am sure we can find someplace would you prefer close by or far away?" With a subtle move of his wrist he managed to slit it quite nicely on a hidden blade. He then lifted it up so that the vampire could clearly see the blood dripping and running from his arm to hit the ground. "Oh darn look at how clumsy I am I seem to have cut myself here. Look at all that blood and how it is just going to waste on the ground." Ken then looked back at Freya with a slight smirk.
"Besides you said something about innocence..who said I am innocent? I practice an art that is older then old and used for things I can't speak of."
Dory - January 17, 2012 06:38 AM (GMT)
He said that nothing lasted forever. Well that was just silly, considering that he was currently talking to a vampire demonkin who had been trying to survive the same god damned bitch for a thousand years-- and more, if the rumors she'd heard held true; but she'd let it slide. She supposed reincarnation sort've nixed her point anyway, but she didn't get much further in to the thought before the next question came.
Close or far? Well she had said close, hadn't she? Closer generally meant faster as far as she could tell, but that thought got cut short as well. The smell of blood tipped her off, and her pupils were dilating even before his cutesy little asshole display. She was pissed-- or at least she told herself that she was pissed-- as she did her very best to send him the dirtiest look known to man kind, only to find herself sidetracked (again) by the stream of crimson trailing straight for the ground below.
When it came to self control, Freya was good. The best she'd ever known.
But not that good.
Both hands snapped out for his arm; though one arm got caught on Fesseln's poor (utterly forgotten) head, and she dragged the wound to her lips without so much as an apology. Not another drop would spill, though her current support beam shuddered with quiet, almost contained laughter.
He said something about innocence, and not having it. If she wasn't currently otherwise occupied, she probably would have had a smart-ass remark about preaching to the choir, but there was no world outside of feeding. Blood was like air; and every drop was a moment of a new life. Color, focus, clarity-- it was always there, it was everything, it was all around her; and just out of reach. But not for the moment.
No one understood. How could they? They took their blood for granted; knowing their heart would continue to beat until the day their eyes closed with the escape of their final breath. But she-- She! She was the one with nothing-- the one who denied the very concept of needs, of desires, of life-- to give them everything, to deserve, to earn.
She wouldn't take much. Enough to give strength to her legs again, and to carry her in to the outpost that already fucking hated her -anyway-, before she would release his wrist and the beloved blood inside. The same motion drew her arm from Fesseln's neck, and with the slightest shift of stance, she slammed both palms in to the dragon's chest with more than enough force to send him sprawling to the ground some distance from where she stood.
Her eyes flickered back toward Ken, toward Elyon, and she swallowed the last of blood. Two, now, who had helped her-- one against her intention, and the other against her will.
What in the name of hell do you do with that?!
She needed a minute.
"No one said the healer had to be willing." She announced as though it explained everything in the world, and turned on her heel as, still laughing, Fesseln propped himself up on his elbows.
Assuming you won't have a problem with it, seeing as you pretty much forced it: Also yes.))
Alucard - January 17, 2012 07:00 AM (GMT)
Ken was used to sacrificing blood and life for power it was part of the curse of his art. As she fed on his arm he could feel the life force transferring from himself to her healing her. Once she seemed to be finished at pushed the other man away he simply smiled some things were to easy to control if you knew the right techniques.
He also smiled at he blood on the ground the still lingering feelings of the souls that had been obliterated this very eve. There was enough power here to get them quite a ways indeed. "Well since you have no destination in mind and Walking down to that outpost is out of the mind allow me to be of service once again." Waving his left hand palm out fingers up and parallel to his chest counter clock-wise while going "hurhhhnnnn" followed by "whacha" and sudden strike forward. This caused a ring of darkness to shoot from his palm to a spot some ten fifteen feet in front of him and expand into a shimmer portal of shadows.
The blood from his wound began to trickle a new but as it started to flow appeared as if to evaporate from his vary arm turning to ash in the air. The same thing happened to the blood of his that had dripped unto the ground. "This will take use far enough away from here that we should lose and trackers and be fast enough to get a healer. One last chance to pick where this portal is going to take us before I choose." Ken really had no idea where to go and hoped he could goad one last thing from the female before he had to make a choice.
Dory - January 17, 2012 08:57 PM (GMT)
Of service once again, huh? She wasn't buying it. Once was hard enough to believe, but twice? Not to mention that she had seen such a portal before; and the creator had been able to heal her without the ritualistic exchange of blood.
And, of course, winning was losing and losing was winning. Again. Red flag, sound the horns, call in the cavalry, force shield activate, beep beep fucking beep. Really, would they never learn to quit while they were ahead? 'Course not. Fucking mortals. And just why was the outpost out of mind? They already hated her; how much more damage would brutalizing a healer in to healing a dragon really do?
Well, she -was- undead... and still poisoned... and consent really was a whole lot quicker.
A low growl. Yeah, so he was right, so what? Yeah, so he had found one little perfectly obvious weakness, so what? She was Freya fucking Hamilton. He wouldn't corner a lion-- what made him think cornering her was any better of an idea? Irritations were meant to be smashed.
Still, she would let him have the win. Sort've.
"Keep milking, kid." She snapped over her shoulder, and shook her head, shifting to stride back toward her blade. In a win win, lose lose situation, the only -real- question was a matter of stakes and assets; and there were more effective walls to bust, than his. He wanted her to have an opinion? Fine. She would formulate an opinion; but she calling his ass out, first, and that damned 'opinion' was going to be effective. Xanthe hadn't learned -all- of her tricks from her mother. The application of malice? That was all Freya.
The children needed a port. Elyon needed a healer. These two factors were priority one. What traveling she -had- done, had been done mostly by foot or wing. From Ascantha, to Roft, to Galam Yensa-- port; option discarded. You don't attack a god and then expect his priests to lend you hand. Nazca-- port; ran a very high risk of bumping in to Darshe, but most of the healers wouldn't ask questions. Option held. To Sanctuary, past Tristan, to Moun. From Moun, through some icy place she'd never gotten the name of, to the Necronus.
There was a second corner; this one for the children, naturally. Not that she minded. It just made the new option C a little easier to find. The pressure part was the part she was good at.
"Fesseln!" She barked as she took hold of Purebane's hilt again and dragged her from the earth. "Aiden! Aliciel!"
"Stehlen Sie ein Boot. Heute Abend. Sofort nachdem ich verlasse." She spoke softly as the dragon arrived by her side, and looked toward Aliciel. "If anyone follows you, you kill them and remove the heart, and the head. Quickly. No questions, no hesitation-- do you understand?"
Lifting her fingers to her lips, she gave a sharp whistle and turned back to face the obligations at hand. If she would cry, she would do so later. She had maybe ten minutes of focus and function-- now was not the time for sentiment.
"Moun." She gave Ken her damned answer, and turned her glazed eyes back toward the portal. She had been a part of the Sash force handling their short undead infestation. With any luck, she could cash in on some of the credit. Without any luck, there was still a well there-- which, she didn't know the function of, other than to burn vampires on touch; but it was supposedly really special. If it hurt her, it would probably help any one else.
She didn't bother to wait for a response before she was headed toward the portal, and a dark-furred wolf burst from the tree line like a shot to catch at her heels.
"Her name's Penumbra." She tossed over her shoulder, "She bites, too." And vanished through the rift.
Alucard - January 20, 2012 09:37 AM (GMT)
Ken felt more then saw the large wolf as it ran past him into the portal and heard the warning. The dog bites he also judging from the others figured he and the sack of flesh over his shoulder would be the last through the portal. Taking one final breath he turned towards the group and nodded before shouting. "So long kid take care of yourself and watch the lone trips in the woods at night." Then he stepped through the portal and it made a whistling clap as it snapped shut.
Dory - January 25, 2012 06:55 AM (GMT)
~Some time later~
He crept around the corner like a shadow, slender fingers gripping at the side of one of the outpost's buildings as vermillion eyes darted up and down the crossroads before him. With a snap, his gaze stopped on the path ahead-- the one that led to the docks-- and he took in a breath of moist air.
The children weren't long behind him. They scurried like baby rats in his shadow, sticking close to the building which was their cover. A lifted hand stopped them not far from his back, and Aliciel looked, carefully, behind.
"All clear." She whispered, and the shrike was moving without another second's hesitation.
So late in the night, the docks had been abandoned. Picking out the smallest of the boats took little more than a glance, and he waved the children forward again before he dropped to the deck of the chosen sailboat, and made quick work of the ropes keeping it secure.
He finished just in time to scoop his hands under Aliciel's arms, and lower her on to the boat. Tossing the ropes in after her, Aiden jumped down on his own, and unloaded the belts of in-tact canteens on the deck before he wiped the back of his arm over his forehead, and sighed.
"Are you sure she won't need these?" He spoke quietly, looking down toward them. Filled with waters from the Well of Syn, every one of them-- he'd checked.
Fesseln could only offer a grim smile, and ruffle his hair. With Freya, you could never really tell; but she had left without them, and Aliciel would need them more.
"Take care, kids." Was his answer of choice, gaze sweeping over to the vampire girl before he shook his head, and looked to the sky.
He climbed out of the boat, and made his way back in to the outpost, stride centered in the middle of the road. The White Queen thought she was clever, but Fesseln saw straight through her.
His life was about to get interesting. He could feel it in his bones.
Pulling a small gold pocket-watch from his breast pocket, he took a glance at it's shining hands and let a grin pull his lips to reveal one over-sized fang. Showtime was overdue.
He came to a stop toward the center of the outpost, took a moment to look around, and popped his neck.
With a flash, he shifted again, broad wings tearing from his humanoid disguise with an unearthly scream which would ricochet from every wall and through every eardrum around him. The first beat of his wings cleared the road of it's stands, wheelbarrows, and debris, and he craned his neck proudly to give his cry to the very moon. Another terrible shriek escaped his maw, "Here is your 'Abomination'!" And he took to the Skies.
He would circle around Mount Volcano: Buy his rider her time to recover; but with every second, every heartbeat that passed as he watched them gather below his hovering form in terror, he anticipated the moment that Nectara would wake at last.
Roush - January 26, 2012 09:56 PM (GMT)
The dragon would soon be greeted by 5 of Arcavia's Revenants.
What was a Revenant?
When Arcavia cast a spell known as 'Revenants Abyssi' (essentially manipulate on a recently killed body), the effected corpse takes on a new form.
The skin on the face is peeled back in varying patterns, sometimes leaving nothing but bone. They eyes are completely disintegrated, leaving nothing but dark, swirling pools of chaos. All the clothing is torn off, and the skin around all the joints is twisted and ripped off, especially around the legs. The feet stay facing forwards, but the legs rotate out wards until the hips give way and the knees pop around, making the knee joints bend the opposite way they are supposed to. Next, the ribs rip away from the body, as well as most of the skin from the sides of the torso. They restructure into bat-like wings that form on their back.
Then the arms rip apart, the two bones that make up the forearm detaching and sliding against each other. One slips past the other as the muscles and wrists change to accommodate what is now an extra-long arm with two elbows. The hands break apart as well, adding another joint between the knuckles and the wrist. Of course not much skin is left intact. Their weapon is made up of 4 Shadow Lances, casted from whatís left of the skin and internal organs. Itís about 9 feet long, with one lance sticking out from other three that form the handle. After it strikes something, another lance immediately shifts over and slides into the leading tipís place. At the Revenantsí convenience, it replaces the lance in the handle. Another short lance is usually carried in the left arm. This one is sometimes thrown.
And they were. The first thing the dragon would see would be the dark lances, followed soon by their sources. The piercing sound of the Revenats' screeches would travel far and wide, probably drawing some attention from the city, not that anyone would intervene.
The ancient, crazed abyssal souls that now charged after Fesselen were the released tortured souls of second-trip abyssals. They didn't care about their own well being, and hated all that still lived. They would definitely keep him busy.
Arcavia had possessed a sturdy looking man, although now that no one was here, he didn't have much competition. Even the dragon had abandoned them...
They underestimated their enemies tenacity.
Arcavia set foot on the deck of the ship, emerging from a pool of darkness. He moved quickly, dark lances spinning around the undead, bleeding, highly scarred body. He had used it to cast all the Revenants, and now he manipulated both of the kids into staying put and keeping quiet. He closed in on Aiden first... Manipulate dropped him to his knees, though he kept the boy conscious of what was going on.
Arcavia grabbed his jaw firmly, shoving four finger into his mouth, which stayed slack. He smiled as he saw the terror in the boys eyes...
It was almost unfortunate. But the Abomination deserved this for what she had done to the abyss. She deserved to have everything taken away from her. It was a shame she wasn't here, because she deserved to watch.
Acid flowed from his fingertips as it burnt down the boys throat, through his torso, and down to the ships deck. The effect was quick and gruesome; Arcavia threw the boy aside, and looked at his handiwork.
All that was left was the boys head, arms, and some of his legs. The bones that made up his ribs, spine, and hips were half melted and were still steaming. Blood flowed from what was left, making the scene even more... Horrendous.
Now... for the girl. Arcavia placed a hand on her head, conjuring a circlet around her skull. The Dark Portal behind him had never closed, and with a swift move, he threw her into it.
It lead to Asphodel, in the castles court, to be specific. She was sure to be noticed. The main gem in the circlet was actually filled with blood, which fueled a Manipulate spell. For the next few hours, she would obey whatever she told by whoever gave the order.
Arcavia would stay behind a while to have some fun with the dragon before he returned to claim his new title.
Dory - January 26, 2012 10:50 PM (GMT)
It wasn't even full moments after the dragon had left that the nightmare truly began. Aliciel screamed with the appearance of the man, hand instantly moving to the short sword at her hip, but it was to no avail. She stood, shaking and struck dumb as the mortal boy who had named her friend, melted from the inside out. Eyes wide and filling with tears, she shook her head very slightly-- No!-- and he was moving toward her-- Don't!-- and the world went black.
His shriek had a lot more echoes than it should have.
He flapped his wings before he bothered to look, head arching back as his body rocketted suddenly in to the sky and in to a loop. He waited until the descent, watching a barrage of five dark lances whiz underneath of his body before he looked for the source.
Revenants. Then the children were already dead, or as good as; and this was little more than a show of power, designed to make a point. The white queen had chosen her new 'master of ceremony' well.
Unfortunately, Fesseln was his equivalent; just on the other side, and now he was pissed off.
His wings folded around his body as his jaw dropped once more and he plummeted back toward the ground, straight through the cloud of monstrosities. The next scream came without sound as his minds eye locked on the tainted magical tie between them, and he loosed the wrath of draconic arcane.
Streams of blistering white energy arched away and toward the cloud, three directed for each Revenant and three darting off for Arcavia as his body spun; and his wings caught him again. He swept back up after them, hungry maw still gaping.