Dragon Fire

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by theLogophile, Sep 19, 2012.

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  1. _lost__by_valentinakallias-d2nsyev.jpg Allira Strongborne arrived at her new place; a small studio-type apartment right a few blocks away from Oxford University. The place was small, cozy. It was fully-furnished, as her new locations always are. She'll have to send a message soon to her Circle Master.

    She was tired from her 8-hour flight; sitting on her ass for 8 hours straight, confined in a metal box thousands of feet high in the air, surrounded by people was not exactly her idea of fun. But ever since Allira started her duty as a dragon slayer when she was 16 she's only ever stayed in one place for about a year or two, moving in circulation along with other dragon slayers. She looked at the small calendar on the study table: she'll be turning 20 in a couple of weeks. She sighed, laid down on the bed, wanting to sleep. But then she couldn't get comfortable enough so she started unpacking: weapons first, equipping the place in case of emergency and separating the ones she normally used and the ones that are needed only on special occasions. It was easy to travel around with their weapons as they're normally shipped as something else entirely; like maybe a book or a pen. They're easier to carry and less suspicious. Next to go were her clothes; her student clothes and her dragon slayer mask to protect her identity. They also have a uniform but it's difficult to prepare for an ambush; it was more of a hassle for her than of any help.

    She had no personal belongings other than a few books so there wasn't a lot to unpack. She had no pictures of friends or family--she didn't have those. She looked around her new place and sighed; she was satisfied. She pushed away her bags underneath the bed and sat. Then she realized she was hungry and that there was no food at the place yet. She looked out her window; she was on the 3rd floor on the building. Not such a far drop-off in case she needs to get out the windows. She saw a small place a few places down that looked like a small cafe. She figured they'd have food there anyway. She'll just have to buy groceries after.
  2. Ryo plopped wearily down on a stool in a downtown pub he frequented. It had been another rough day at his job as a firefighter. They'd had nearly half a dozen false alarms, and in the one real fire they got, one of the new recruits had slipped up and wound up in the hospital luckily with minor injuries. He loved his job. It provided a good cover for him more often than not, it paid well, and the hours were good, but he couldnt help but think the humans he worked alongside should go get another job. Something more suited to them. They werent as fire resistant or tolerant as he was, and in the many years he'd been there, he'd seen alot of them get injured. He rubbed his head and shoved the images out of his mind. The Bartender had already placed his usual order, Rum, in front of him. He picked it up and proceeded to down nearly four more bottles in a 2 hour span.

    Once his cash dried up, Ryo began the long trek home. Drunk and stumbling as he was, it took him nearly an hour to get home. Night had completely taken over, and even some of the night creatures were beginning to bed down for some rest. Some distant, drowned-out part of his mind cursed whatever fates made him live on the third floor of his apartment complex, but he managed to make it up safely. He dropped his keys a few times before he got the door open, slipped inside, and stripped before plunging into a dreamless sleep.
  3. Allira easily carried two bags of groceries to her apartment. She didn't mean to stay out so late, but it was good to get an initial survey of the place. There wasn't much activity of non-human creatures in the area. And even if there was, it was none of her business. They usually only get orders for their assignments in the perimeter of their area and that's about it. Running into other dragon slayers was a rare occurrence but it happens from time to time.

    She saw a boy, probably about her age, struggle to go up the stairs in his current drunken state. Allira watched him warily up until he got to the third floor and stop in front of the apartment one door down, on the opposite side of hers. She shook her head, took out her keys and went inside. She never understood why one would one to drink so much you can barely even walk.
  4. Ryo woke up the next day as if it was just another day and he hadnt gotten drunk the night before. He lightly cooked a large steak, some eggs and toast for his breakfast, threw on some casual clothes, and sauntered out to enjoy the warm Saturday morning. He leaned on the railing and took in his surroundings. People were already buzzing around, rushing about their normal lives - children and their parents at the park, men and women hurrying to work or off to do errands.

    His eye caught a bird dancing around it in the air and he watched it eagerly. It had been so long since he had been able to hunt. He yearned to go out into the middle of nowhere, shed this disguise of his, and hunt his dinner like he was created to do. He closed his eyes, imagining the wind pressing against him, flowing under his wings, the feel of the sun on his scales and the sounds of nature below him. The peace and quiet of it all. A smile played over his lips as he opened his eyes again, returning to a world of metal and concrete.

    He shook himself and turned to go downstairs and on to his morning run.
  5. Allira didn't have a lot of things to do. Usually everything regarding paperwork and back stories were already prepared for her. She's already read the packet for her new identity and she didn't need to read it again. It was usually the same shit; she was an independent girl and her parents were back home somewhere. Or other times she'd be an orphan who was raised by her grandparents but they've passed away so she's now living on her own off of their last will. It wasn't really too far off from the truth either, so there wasn't much to remember. Also, there was almost nobody to tell. She's always been good at keeping her distance from the Mundies, even the people of her own kind.

    She sipped her (bad) coffee and ate her (burnt) toast. She had already gotten the morning paper which she read daily because it was always a good start if you needed information. She looked at the calendar. School would start on Monday. She already has her books for school. She looked at the clock beside it and decided she wanted to do a morning run. It was always a good way to survey the area.

    Allira started with a fairly fast pace, memorizing nooks and corners in the area where it would be easy to set up an ambush. She turned 3 corners away from the university, just leisurely jogging. Then she decided to kick it up a notch, passing by other joggers on the way. A few meters ahead of her she noticed someone jogging with a fast pace. His body was built, as if trained for combat. She tried to run faster, trying to get a better look and then she realized it was her neighbor who was drunk from the night before. How strange. She didn't peg him to be a runner.
  6. Ryo kept the pace at a steady, fast pace, wishing he could spread his wings and give them a little air time, but normal people generally didnt approve of such a thing, so he refrained. He lost himself in his thoughts. The fire season was beginning to wind down, which meant less fires, and colder weather. He shivered at the mere thought of snow and under 80 degree weather. Being a dragon, he could warm up fairly easy, but the colder it got, the more he just wanted to go curl up in a nice dark cave and sleep for five or six months. Now that sounded like paradise.

    So caught up was he in his thoughts about caves and hibernating, that he didnt notice the person approaching until they were nearly right next to each other. He glanced over at her. She looked to be about his age and quite fit as well. "Hello," he greeted. "You're new around here, arent you? Never seen you before. I'm Ryo." He gave her a warm smile in place of a handshake.
  7. Allira finally caught up with him and she liked his fast, steady pace. No other runner could keep up with him. Except for her of course. "Hi, I'm Allira." She gave him a forced smile but it didn't reach her eyes. She hoped he didn't notice considering they were running anyway. He was actually quite good-looking and he seemed to be in a really good shape for someone who drowns himself in booze. Maybe it was just a one-time event. She shrugged the thoughts away, concentrating on the path. Their steady heartbeats could be heard loudly through her well-adept ears and she liked the rhythmic pounding of their synced footwork. Oh, well. Might as well get a running partner. What could it hurt? "You study at the U?"
  8. "No, never bothered, went out and got a job instead. I'm a fireman at the local fire department." He took note of the smile purely out of habit, but attributed it to nothing more than stress. Starting a new semester of university was stressful, or so he'd heard. He was quite impressed with her ability to keep up with him, it was a very rare and short lived event. "I suppose you are though. What are you studying?"
  9. "Archeology, but I'm only here for one sem. May I ask why you chose to be a fireman? You seem a bit too young, no offense." Allira tried to pinpoint his accent. He wasn't for around this area but he was British, alright. She wanted to ask where he was from but that would entail him asking her the same question.
  10. "Archaeology? Huh. Didnt peg you for the history type." He hesitated for a minute before answering her other question. He couldnt very well tell her that he was a dragon and he loved and could control fire, and thus became a fireman, now could he? Who knows how she'd react. "Its a family tradition," he finally replied. "My father and grandfather also used to be firemen. I figured, why not. Why are you only staying for a semester? Most students stay for at least a year or so before leaving."
  11. She shrugged. Then she realized he probably didn't notice that what with all the moving. "History's fine. You learn a lot of things. Better than business or law or any other mundane subject, really. I'm only here for our Junior Term Abroad program." Truth was she'd probably already clean out this place of dragons in no time. Big cities tend to be assigned more guardians with little parameter areas to clean, thus making it an easy and fast job. But dragons keep coming into big cities that's why dragon-slayers are cycled through. They turned sharply to another street. The area was a bit steep, making it a challenge on her calves and ankles but she liked that. Her pace didn't slow but she started breathing heavily from the extra effort which was what she wanted.
  12. "True. History does teach you a lot," he replied, his breath coming a bit harder now as well. He looked up at the sky. The new month was coming soon, and with it, his transformation. He both loved and hated it. He loved being back in his original form, it was very liberating. He hated it because of what it did to his system beforehand. He could already feel it beginning: the build up of his magic. Normally, most of his magic was suppressed in his human form, but come the first of the month it was all let loose. You cant just stuff that much magic into such a small body for so long without release, and if it didnt get that release, it would kill him. He usually tried to stay indoors around the time of his change. The buildup not only made him feel sick, but once it got strong enough, it left him vulnerable to those that could sense such things. "Well, Allira, if you want someone to study with, I'd be more than happy to help. I'm going on a trip tomorrow and wont be back till the third, but after that I'm available. There wont be as many fires now that its cooling off so I have the time."
  13. "Thank you, that sounds lovely." Her gratitude was genuine although she doubt she'd need his help. Allira thought about his trip, first 3 days of the month. Ah, her favorite time: the hunting season. It was easy to hunt dragons as they were from their lineage, way farther back. They were able to withstand dragon fire and even create it, if trained enough.

    The dragons have destroyed most of their kind in the past, tried to wipe away the mistakes of their ancestors who married to humans. And now, here they are. The last survivors of the Dragon-Slayers. And Allira was one of the most promising ones so far. She was the youngest to start in the business and now she had been doing the job for 6 years. She's always had a passion for killing and fire ever since she was young. Allira had the best mentor. She didn't have a family or friends, but she had a Mentor and a mission: kill every last dragon. They killed her family and she will kill theirs. With pleasure.

    Allira was so lost in her thoughts that she barely even noticed that they were back in their building already. Her smile was huge as she stretched her muscles to prepare them to rest. She felt the rest of her body relax from the intense work-out. "Ungh," she moaned, unaware of the sounds she was making as she kinked out her muscles. "I haven't had a good work out in awhile. Thanks for that."
  14. Ryo felt his whole body relax as be stretched. "Mm, not a problem. I'm impressed you could keep up with me all that way. We should do it again sometime." He sighed contentedly and unlocked the door to his apartment. "Good luck in school," he said before slipping into his apartment.

    He took a nice piping hot shower. Running with someone else had actually been nice, but he was glad it was over. The buildup of magic was giving him a migraine from hell, and he could begin to feel a slight pressure all over his body, as if it were trying to flip itself inside out. He let the hot water bet down on his head and stream down his body, willing the warmth to relieve some of the ache that had just begun. Once out of the shower, he slipped into a plain black tee and jeans, and headed out again. He had to put in some hours tonight at work. He figured he'd have to leave pretty early and didnt want to leave anything unfinished at work for three days.
  15. Allira simply smiled at his remark as she too entered her apartment. She took a cold shower, letting the coldness wrap itself around her body in a borderline masochistic way. It felt get to so worked up and get a freezing shower right after. When she was finished, she wrapped herself in a towel and went out of the shower to change. She picked simple jeans and a tank top. Even if the weather was getting colder, having dragon blood in her body meant she could stay warm if she wanted to.

    She freed her long, dark hair from the towel to let it dry. She won't start scouring the area for dragons until nightfall. She had the whole day to herself. Allira grabbed a book from the shelf in the corner and began to read where she had left off. Might as well get some reading done while waiting for her assignment.
  16. Ryo returned late that day and didnt bother going to bed. His discomfort had increased while at work, and he just wanted to leave. The sooner he got to his hideout, the better. He packed a small overnight bag for the sake of anyone who might see him leave, and grabbed his car keys. He eyed the steak he had yet to cook sitting in his freezer for a second, debating if he should try to eat or just wait until he could hunt. It was a short debate. He closed the freezer and headed out of his apartment. The sun was beginning to go down by this point, turning the sky into an inferno of reds and purples.

    Ryo drove for miles. He didnt stop driving until he reached a small campsite the next day. The city was far away and out of sight. He parked his car, grabbed his bag, and set out into the forest. He didnt bother with trails. Where he was going didnt have a trail anyways. He had been coming to this location since he was a boy, but he'd always been careful of hiding his location. His caution was why no hunter had ever visited him before. Roughly an hour passed before he came to a small grove. To one side, tucked away between the trees, was a bush-like plant with vines covering it. He gently pushed them aside to reveal a dark hole underneath. He smiled, and let himself slide down the hole. The bush and the vines snapped back into place behind him.

    The hole led to a large cavern deep underground, more than large enough for a dragon of his size. He stripped out of his clothes and stuffed them in his bag, then he released his hold on his magic. It spread out around him, stirring up a cyclone of wind around him. He felt his body changing, growing until he was back in his natural form. A dragon with scales the same impossibly black shade as his hair. He spread his wings almost all the way in the cavern and stretched until it hurt. Its nice to be back, he thought.
  17. It was dark outside and Allira felt the hum of magic in her fingertips as her hands hovered over her weaponry. Hmmm. Which one for the first night of the hunt? She was already dressed all in black. A simple pair of comfortable jeans and a black tank top, paired by a black leather jacket made of real dragon skin. Her shoes were a simple pair of black boots, her long dark hair in a tight pony tail. Can't have that flying around during combat.

    Her hand rested on a dragon blade full of intricate carvings. The blade itself was made of Valerian steel, molded by dragon fire. It's one of the very few things that could cut through dragon skin. The blade was settled on her right leg sheath. The next she picked were a pair of double bladed daggers which she sheathed on her upper back. She also picked a handgun that fired powerful ice bullets. If a dragon was in human form, one shot through the heart would be all that's necessary for the dragon to be executed. Around her belt were throw knives laced with fatal poison that would cause a dragon in whichever form to be paralyzed even by the tiniest cut.

    She added a few more extra daggers here and there (she REALLY loved her daggers) in case of emergency. She stood straight and made a mental checklist in her head. Then she looked at the bow and arrow. It would cover more distance for her. But then again, she'd only be surveying this area for the night and in big cities, daggers were more useful than long-range weapons.

    Allira opened her side windows. There was no need to go out through the main door, considering she liked to survey areas like these from above. She looked around her place again to make sure everything looked normal before climbing out the window. She jumped through a couple of ledges, making sure no one could see her until she got to the roof of the neighboring building. She stretched out her hands, letting the cold night air whip through her face. She inhaled a huge amount of air, letting it settle on her lungs, before letting it out. She closed her eyes, her face directed at the moon. She scoured the area for a feel of a potential dragon and her ear caught the sound of wings flapping. Not just any wings... dragon wings.

    Her face turned into a feral smile, her eyes shone brightly in the moonlight. The hunter has awakened. It was time to hunt.
  18. Roughly three days later, Ryo climbed back up to the surface world, back in his human form. He hiked back to his car feeling refreshed like never before. His stomach was full, and his body was relaxed. He arrived home early the next morning and trudged up the stairs. Once again, he had managed to avoid any hunters, a feat which he celebrated every month. He'd known plenty of other creatures just as cautious as him, some more so, who had been taken down by one hunter or another. Every month he was happy to return to his apartment. He dropped his bag just inside the door and barely had the thing shut before he was stripping out of his grubby clothes and jumping in the shower. The crawl back to earth was not an easy one, no matter how many times he did it, and it made him filthy every time. Once he was out of the shower, he changed into a pair of pajama pants and fell asleep. He didnt bother with a shirt.
  19. Allira just got back from the first day of classes and she placed her bag on the floor. She went to the ref to grab a yogurt and proceeded to turn on her laptop. The younger members of the Order, the organization that helped in rescuing and saving the Fire-wielders when they were attacked by the dragons, run a website where all the Slayers get everything they need. The website is masked as a second-hand book exchange shop and there are several security portals in order for you to get in. If you make a single mistake, your computer will be terminated. It was kind of handy in keeping track of what you need to do. Less paperwork too.

    Allira was informed that her three Slays over this weekend has been cleaned up. The Cleaners usually come and take the Slays in order to prevent the norm from finding out. Allira never asked where they were taken or what were done to them. They preferred to have the dragons rather half-dying than dead. And they always praised Allira for always making the cleanest cuts and for causing the least damage.

    Satisfied, Allira turned off her laptop and proceeded to run a bath. She deserved it after a weekend of good hunting. She turned on some music, stripped off her clothes and dipped in the warm bath. She closed her eyes in order to relax and fall asleep.

    A small girl with bright, green eyes and long dark hair waded into the lake. They were in a really, really deep part of the woods; the perfect place for training. She had been left alone while her mentor has gone to hunt some dragons after detecting dragon activity. She was ordered to practice her knife throwing skills while he was gone. But the girl had been hungry. It's been 2 hours since her mentor had left her. She had been trained to hunt ever since she learned how to crawl, it'd be easy enough for an 8 year old girl to hunt some fish. But the girl has never been in a lake. She forgot that she didn't know how to swim.

    Her foot slipped on something underwater and she felt panic rise up in her throat. Something caught her legs and she was kicking it helplessly under the dark murky water. She couldn't get up for air and she's already dropped her weapon. There's something in an 8-year-old's mind that you never understand. They're so young and carefree and danger doesn't really register to them until they are in the brink of dying.

    Just then, a pair of two small hands grabbed at her waist, pulling her out of the water as she still kicked and fought whatever held her legs. She had been afraid then. Her true fear only came once she realized she would get in trouble with her mentor. She had stopped kicking then, coughing up water as she was being dragged into shallow waters by another figure she did not recognize. Finally, she stood up on her own, still holding on to the figure who had saved her. Much to her surprise, it was a boy with dark hair and even darker eyes. She was surprised. Was he another dragon-slayer in training? No one was supposed to be in these parts of the wood.

    But before she or he could say anything, a loud scream of anguish was heard all over the woods. It sounded like a dragon. The boy had then looked at the direction of the scream and yelled "No!!!" as he ran towards it. But as he got to the beach another figure had taken him. He trashed and fought in every way possible. "Daddy! Daddy!" He screamed over and over again. The figure, which the girl had figured out to be a woman, held him close. The girl couldn't hear what she was saying, all she could hear was his loud sobbing cries calling for his dad. Then it hit her: he was crying for the dragon. The dragon that her mentor had just slayed. It was his father. And then suddenly she was angry because they killed her daddy too. They killed her mom and her whole family.

    She stomped towards them, fire burning in her core. She no longer felt the cold touch of her wet clothes sticking to her skin. Her dark hair matted around her face but her face was determined. She could do it, too. She would kill them. The same way they killed her family. Did she even scream then? Did she get a chance to cry? She couldn't remember. She was only an infant when they were mercilessly slaughtered.

    But the woman had looked up before the girl had even gone half-way through the beach. She gathered up the boy in her arms and ran the opposite direction. "But, mommy, wait! They'd kill her too!" He cried in his mother's arms, pointing to the little girl. His mother didn't even look back at her as she said. "She's one of them, Ryo. She'd kill us too."
    Just then Allira woke up, bolting straight up from the tub. The water had gone cold. She quickly got out of the tub and covered herself in a towel. She stared at herself in the mirror. The bright green eyes were still there, but the little girl wasn't. What his mother was true. Had she known they were dragons, she would've probably killed them too. They were probably dead by now anyway. Allira sprayed water on her face. She put on some clothes and decided to head out for dinner.
  20. That night, he had another nightmare. They'd been getting less and less frequent the older he got, but they were still painful. There was a pond, and a small girl wading into the chilly water. He knew the area well enough to know how dangerous that pond could be. Then she abruptly disappeared underwater. He was moving before he even realized it. He waded in after her and pulled her out of the water and for a moment, everything seemed to be great. He couldnt shake the sense of familiarity about her. Then he hear it: the scream. The voice all too familiar. After that it was a confusing blur of pain and uncertainty. Images of a broken and bloodied body flitted through the dream like some garish ghost. He hadnt seen it happen, but his mind played it out perfectly for him, in excruciating detail of how it had most likely happened.

    He woke with a start, his father's glassy eyes still searing his memory. He pushed the phantoms of imagination away and rubbed his temples. He hadnt had a dream about that in a long time. He had hoped they were gone for good, so what had caused them to return? He shook his head, ran his hand through his unruly hair, and slipped out of bed and into his running clothes. Physical activity always helped to clear his mind. He padded down the stairs and took off at a steady pace, letting his mind focus on the act of running.
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