Currently not accepting players IC THREAD ➟ Armour will not protect us, and the shadows will not hide us, but hope might bind us. What we cherish, everything that we know, and everything that we love; It is all at risk. To protect what remains and reclaim what was lost I Cross My HEART ✘ - Motto of the Heart Stealers ✘ Cross My HEART A high-powered action-adventure roleplay set in an apocalyptic setting about a new world filled with magic, technology, horrors that lurk in the dark, and people who hunt them. ✘ Darkness lurks within every person. Nobody is wholly good, and we are all capable of great evil. In turn there is light within each person, representing the ability to help and protect others despite our darker urges. There are some entities, however, that do not abide by these rules, and seek to disrupt that balance. We had stood strong against them for so long, and our souls were so impregnable, that we forgot they existed. Many fled this world, unable to corrupt our hearts and minds as they wish, but one remained in secret. This one was a being of darkness, and it fed off of our hate, anger, greed, and sorrow. It did not lash out as its companions had long ago, but instead watched and waited, growing stronger and stronger, as its shadowy tendrils coiled themselves around our world in secret. ✘ An eon passed, and humanity reached its height. We remember it as a golden age, which makes our inevitable fall all the more painful. The Dark Presence, the name which we now refer to the hidden entity as, tightened its grip on us, and brought us crashing down in almost an instant. The darkest of us were consumed by their own shadows, warped into nightmarish creatures of dark, and could feel nothing but pain. They lashed out with teeth and claws, hunting down those that had resisted the influence of the Dark Presence. Those that resisted fought back, but found their weapons useless against their seemingly omnipresent foe, and for every thrall of the Dark Presence slain a dozen would take their place. ✘ Those that survived found safety underground or in the most isolated parts of the world where the Dark Presence could not find them. They carved out a meagre existence here, struggling for survival for generations as nightmares crept along their borders. Tales say that, in their most dire hour, a figure in white appeared to the survivors. Possessing unnatural strength and courage, she taught the survivors how to use the strength of the Dark Presence to benefit themselves. Thralls had no need for their heart, and so it was corrupted and twisted, turned into a solid black stone that held immense arcane power. The figure in white revealed it could power great weapons of war, and even empower people. With this knowledge they could fight back and make a new world for themselves. While it is not known if the figure in white is anything more than a fairy-tale, it is known that humanity erupted from their havens, brandishing weapons and new, arcane abilities. With these new powers they fought the darkness, and began to reclaim the lands they had once called home. ✘ So the New World was built upon the ashes of the old. New havens were built atop the ruins of old cities, which only grew in number as more people rose up and pushed back the forces of the Dark Presence. As two hundred years passed the grip of the Dark Presence seemed to weaken and fade. The darkness that enshrouded the world vanished, and only the remnants of Darkness remain. Some believe it was slain, while others claim it is merely sleeping. Nobody knows for sure. Now though, with the threat of destruction gone, men and women dedicate themselves to learn from and to hunt down the monsters that remain, hoping to make sure humanity still follows the path to its old glory. While battered and torn, the world lives on. ✘ This is where our story begins. We follow the story of the Heart Stealers, a small but skilled band of hunters that have been tracing rumours of an artefact from the Old World that might be able to dispel the darkness that plagues the word. Their quest will not be easy, however, as the wasteland is a dangerous place, and it is not only the thralls that hope to stop them before they succeed in their quest. The World Characters and the CS Bestiary (Move your mouse to the spoiler area to reveal the content) ✘ Thralls: The simplest and most common type of thrall, these individuals possess no abilities beyond that of an ordinary human other than an inhuman tolerance for pain and injury. They possess little threat alone even to inexperienced hunters, although they often congregate in large groups called hordes to make up for their physical frailty. Thralls only feel negative emotion, such as anger or sadness, and are so consumed by it that they lack the ability to reason or communicate any more than a few brief words at a time. These overwhelming emotions cloud their judgement, and as such thralls are not particularly intelligent and a hunter can outwit them without great difficulty. On occasion a Witch will take command of a group of thralls. These thralls show unusually great levels of intelligence and restraint; just enough to follow the orders of the Witch and brandish makeshift weapons. ✘ Witches: Although not commonly encountered, witches are well known for their ability to stand toe to toe with even experienced hunters. Whereas ordinary human beings transform into thralls, hardier hunters who battle the forces of the Dark Presence daily seem more resistant to its influence, and retain their memories and intelligence even after the transformation is complete. Witches are no more able to feel positive emotions than thralls are however, and this drives many of them mad regardless. Witches almost always have the ability to command essence, even if they did not before their transformation, and their abilities are volatile and extremely powerful. Oddly social beings, Witches often gather hordes of thralls to act as soldiers and guards, or they may ally with other Witches to form a coven. ✘ Balors: The origin of these creatures is a mystery, as no human being has ever been witnessed transforming into a balor. These creatures are universally feared however, as they dwarf any other type of thrall. Ranging from roughly 18ft at the smallest to over 100ft at the largest, balors are almost completely immune to conventional weaponry and are usually powerful enough that no structure can slow them down. Interestingly, balors are not particularly violent, and only attack when provoked. They are, however, dim-witted, and may topple an entire city by merely walking through it, completely unaware of the destruction they leave in their wake. Because of this, and their immense strength, balors are typically left alone unless their path leads them directly towards a settlement. On occasion they pass by cities, ignoring them completely, heading blindly towards some unknown destination. ✘ Sliggs: Although not humanoid in form, sliggs spawn from the thick black ichor that thralls leave behind. Resembling mobile balls of black slime containing a single, tiny heart shard, sliggs are almost completely harmless, possessing no weapons or methods of defense. They feed off of emotion, both good and bad, and as such as drawn to population centres, whether those places are populated by humans or thralls. Despite their harmlessness, sliggs spotted outside of human settlements are still expected to be slain on sight, as sliggs that feed from too much negative emotion may grow into the far more dangerous sliggoth. ✘ Sliggoths: Considered the adult form of sliggs, sliggoths are large, bull-sized monstrosities with an uncontrollable hunger for flesh. Thick, leathery skin has covered the sligg and spines as sturdy as steel sprout from their back and jut backwards. Enormous, insect-like pincers have appeared to form a mouth, and six short legs protrude from their body, which allow them to move at remarkable speeds. While thralls seem capable of only feeling negative emotions, the sliggoth is more limited still, and feels nothing but rage. They are exceptionally violent and will attack without provocation, making them among the most deadly types of thrall. Key Terms (Move your mouse to the spoiler area to reveal the content) ✘ Dark Presence: A powerful, unseen entity that embodies hate, anger, and sadness. It brought about the end of the Old World by twisting most of the population of the world into puppets known as Thralls which hunted down those strong enough to resist. There is no evidence of the Dark Presence’s activity in over a hundred years, and it is generally assumed to either be dead or asleep. ✘ Thralls: Human beings that have been turned into monsters by the Dark Presence. There are many different types of thrall, from the cunning and powerful Witch to the single-minded but numerous Thralls that share their name with the collective group. They feel only negative emotions, and are extremely violent towards human beings. All thralls are humanoid figures cloaked in an inky black darkness, their only discernible features being their mouth and eyes which glow with a ghostly blue light. A human being who has spent too long in areas under the influence of the Dark Presence, which accounts for most areas outside of city walls, may one day transform into a thrall themselves. ✘ Essence: An almost magical source of energy that provides the majority of the world’s energy. When properly harnessed it can act as a fuel source, or it can imbue items with unusual properties, and most modern technology is influenced by essence in both ways. Certain processes can even grant human beings superhuman abilities through essence. ✘ Heart Shard: When humans transform into thralls their hearts solidify, turning into a black, fist-sized stones that hums with power, most commonly called heart shards. Heart shards are lethally toxic to everything around it, but once properly treated they are safe to handle. They are the only known source of essence, and so they are harvested in huge quantities to power cities and technology. If implanted into the chest of a human being in place of their heart, a heart shard can grant them abilities that go far beyond what a human being is capable of. ✘ Artificers and Warlocks: Individuals that have dedicated themselves to hunting down thralls and other monsters created by the Dark Presence, both types fight in a different manner. Artificers rely on more advanced technology, taking advantage of the world’s wealth of unusual and powerful technology to gain the upper hand in battle, while Warlocks act as a conduit for essence, their heart long replaced by a heart shard, and can perform unique styles of magic that are difficult to predict, but unique to each individual. The term “warlock” is often used outside of the context of hunters merely to differentiate those who have the ability to command essence from those who do not. Locations (Move your mouse to the spoiler area to reveal the content) To be updated. Major Factions (Move your mouse to the spoiler area to reveal the content) To be updated. Active Characters (Move your mouse to the spoiler area to reveal the content) Colony: Δ (Delta) Grif ♥: Bernadette Westerveldt Sakuyahime: Ashley Cross & Kallen Brandt Sephear: Gerard Karrol Inactive Characters (Move your mouse to the spoiler area to reveal the content) N/a Dead/Lost Characters (Move your mouse to the spoiler area to reveal the content) N/a Character Sheet (Move your mouse to the spoiler area to reveal the content) Feel free to colour this as you wish, especially the parts left in grey. It can make it a little more vibrant and personal to colour it in a way that suits your character. Cross my HEART ✘✘心泥棒✘✘ "Insert Character Quote Here" ✘✘✘ ✘Name: A full name for your character. ✘Age: Age and date of birth. The roleplay begins in the early spring of 200NW for reference. ✘Sex: Male or female, etc. ✘Title: A brief title that sums up your character in a few words. It may be humorous, epic, or both! ✘Appearance: Your character’s appearance; a text description complimented by a picture is preferable, although either will suffice. ✘Biography: Personality and history rolled into one! ✘Equipment/Weaponry: Heart Stealers employ a multitude of different types of weaponry and equipment. Some are simple and practical, like communication devices or PDAs, while others are flamboyant and outlandish, like mechanical gauntlets and transforming buster blades. Go wild! ✘Abilities/Combat Style: The various abilities that your character might possess. People skilled enough to travel the wastes outside of the cities often have a plethora of skills under their belt, such as technical know-how, combat expertise, or the ability to harness the power of essence. ✘Musical theme A musical piece that suits your character!