Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Renegade Proxy, May 31, 2015.

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  1. “Divine? Wouldst thou be as the Gods, O little man? Come, then. Touch only this, the merest tip of what I am, that you may share in my illumination. That you may know what I know... that you may see as I see...”

    It was the screaming wind that brought consciousness back, a cold knife throughout the body and tumbling stomach that washed away any remaining haze to replace it sharply with waking lucidity. Panic followed next, barely suppressed by the preliminary training that had filled full years before. An effort righted the body, ground unrolling below to drive home the fact that yes, this was the sensation of free-fall. Lost to the wind, a light tone signaled the saving grace that was a parachute, sudden jerk as it unfolded pushing breath from lungs and compressing ribs painfully. Yet any pain was welcome if it meant avoiding an unsavory landing somewhere in the tangled mass of green.
    Slowed but not altogether stopped, said tangle soon replaced the open air with clutching arboreal claws that snatched and snapped in passing. Suddenly as the tumult began, so did it end and bloodied but alive the earth was at last regained. Boot-clad feet, thankful for the feeling of unyielding solidity, stood only slightly shaken as a survey was taken of the surroundings at hand. As seen from above so was it from ground level, a forest spreading for miles in all directions. Soft underfoot, traced by serpentine roots, old growth reached toward the heavens that had so unceremoniously deposited the would-be intruder. Ripples of luminescence played from every broken limb that had cushioned the fall, silent but telling.
    It was time to move.
    A brief once-over determined that more than just the legs had come out unscathed and too revealed more than just the remains of the parachute harness. Coming to the end of those leads, a release saw them flutter away to be lost in the twilight behind, questing hands adding light armor and pack to the list of things that would be examined in much finer details once safety was assured. With the destruction of plant-life came the guardians of the trees, silent killers that would converge and then hunt any fool enough to think they could have their way within the verdant wastes. Deeper understanding was lost for the moment, but inconsequential if danger did rear its leaf-crowned head. Running then, until lungs burned and legs refused to lift for another step. Only then was a rest taken along with stock of the situation at hand.
    Off-hand, a river played chorus to the proceedings as pack was lowered between knees and unfastened, its contents perused. A quick rifling revealed all that would be needed: survival gear in the form of tools, cooking utensils and even a small cache of medical supplies among other things. Brief, but such was the lot of one condemned. A weapon too had been provided, the short blade forged in ancient style in a single plane of sharpened metal mounted upon a leather-wrapped handle. Its wicked tip gleamed in the living light that played in docile patterns all around. Weapon laid aside and head leaning back against a sheltering stone that stood along the riverbank, eyes closed in remembrance.

    Years spent training, fighting, learning. The way of book and blade, to hone body and mind to the pinnacle of human perfection. But it was not to be, time corroded all will and with the disapproving glances of friends and family it was apparent that failure would be imminent. So it was, stood before a tribunal, sentenced and then...oblivion, to wake falling.

    “Let nature do as we cannot,” the words rang hollow on the dampened air, anger-choked and final.
  2. A fire burned in the confines of a cave. It's glow illuminating the dark, casting the shadow of a demon waiting for its prey. Its spiky hair was only exaggerated by the jagged walls of the cave. It's back hunched as if to stare at the child that had walked into its mitts. A single hand reached out to grab the archway of the cave's entrance diminishing the figure's claws and soon a body followed the hand. The man walked toward this new being, one like him yet to earn his deathly gaze. He walked in silence only able to analyze the back of his target, it harbored a fear and hate similar to his own. This made no difference in the man's eyes.
    His steps picked up covering the distance between them. Concealing one hand within his deep pockets and pulling a knife from one with the off hand he hid beneath the foliage. The predator was ready to pounce on its prey, but when it took action was halted by its prey's will; “Let nature do as we cannot,”. However his momentum was too great and the blade plunged into the shoulder of the child. The man, Jax, had made his presence known and grabbed the thing's arm twisting it behind his back and pulling up while stomping down on the back of it.

    "Continue to speak like that and you will surely die before the week is over." The voice was strained and full of malice.

    Jax's head turned to the blade of the child. Then to his satchel finally he faced his back again. Angered he kicked him aside and stomped on his blade. He reached down slowly and grabbed the blade. Standing back up he cautiously walked up to it and reached down by his side to grab the bag. He examined the contents just as the the previous owner had and grinned with enthusiasm. He took a final look at the child and stared wondering if he would speak. He equipped the bag and knelt down.

    "How'd you end up with that gash?" Jax pointed to the cut on the child's side.
  3. Surprise gave way to pain in a flash, the sounds of approach filtering to conscious awareness only too late. Abruptly pinned beneath the weight of another, the curious feeling of metal embedded in flesh did but little to quell outrage that washed from core to skin. The cave had gone unnoticed, half-concealed behind overhanging greenery while light from within found itself suffused into that broader ambiance cast by leaf and twig. Stupid. Cast to the ground, clutching wounded shoulder, a dark gaze was thrown back at the stranger so cruelly introduced. Words failed, crimson leaking between clenched fingers reply enough though thankfully the pressure-fit body glove did its part to staunch the flow.
    Hooded eyes sought any point of ingress while the other was occupied, taking note of similar awareness and animal readiness that bespoke of long practice in these savage lands. Even the pack was no adequate distraction as every cautious move was undoubtedly cataloged until feet were again reclaimed. His question was met with a showing of teeth, large globule of saliva thrown between them in a petulant fit of anger. It was all he’d get for now.
  4. The saliva landed in a disgusting mess. Jax stared at the space between them for the duration that his legs could bear the uncomfortable stance he sat in. When he stood up he walked over to the boy flipping the sword by its hilt often surprised by its weight.

    "You're probably more stubborn than me. Explains why I can even speak to you. Now don't move, do and you'll find out the consequence."

    Jax walked over to the child and knelt down once again lifting his shirt up in turn forcing the knife out of his back. The tension on the shirt could've broken a bone had he pulled any harder. The malicious beast that had once been a predator of this innocent prey was no longer so apparent. When he got the boy's shirt off he picked him up by his arm and walked him to the river side.

    "Lay down in the water. I'll wait."
    #4 ShiroKiyoshi, Jun 19, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2015
  5. Manhandled again, embarrassment and anger warred within while the continued flashing of a weapon made sure both could merely seethe. It was only as the protective layer was removed that realization finally hit, pain given way to blossom as pressure was released from the wound. It must have happened during the descent, a branch of some description slashing a deep gash just below the rib cage’s curve. Deep, deeper than would have been expected, cold fear swept all other considerations away. could the other be trusted? He hadn’t yet put that sword to good use, though he could always be one of those that preferred to play with their prey.
    Another spear of agony cut further consideration short, dizziness putting a stumble to steps that might have been toward the pack. Antiseptic-impregnated adhesive pads, skin spray, both were there and more just out of arm’s length. Finding oneself leaning against an attacker for stability was a point of contention that would have to slide for now, blood loss picking up without the mediation of proper clothing. Unable much to deny guiding hands, ice cold water was a nice contrast to sudden heat that wrapped like a stifling fist weighing down torso and holding limbs in place.
  6. (I haven't roleplayed in ages and would like to apologise in advance for lacking quality)

    Between the trees, clad in colours owned by the nature in which she emerged herself. The watchful eyes of the third contestant to enter the stage flowed across the two before her in a curious doubt whether her existence and thus her presence should be made clear to them. Alas, neither of them seemed compatible with her own personality. One stubborn and the other impulsive, did not bode well for her chances, yet the option of the choice was unavailable. Had this surrounding more to offer her in terms of necessities, her own diligence could have offered salvation, but the law of nature is sharp and stern. 'Let nature as we can not', one of them had mutter prior to his new injury. Such a grim predicament, yet one that reminded of nature's unique way of surviving all in it's way. A skill that we, humans, do not posses even now, as our lives depend on it.
    Detaching from the forest's scheme of colours, the red headed woman, had taken her hatchet in her right hand and both patiently both and carefully placed her foot in front of another. Silently sneaking her way over would be foolish, for she had seen that the lanky boy with the knife was quick to strike, and did not want to startle those eager to wound her.
    #6 Freyja, Jun 19, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2015
  7. Jax's stance finally loosened giving way for a breath of life to escape his lungs. He grabbed the boy's shirt and sheathed his sword in the makeshift sheath that was his belt. Stepping into the water and walking over to the bank on the otherside he stopped and stared at three wooden stakes. One stake was burned completely, the second was only charred at the top and the last untouched. The boy could easily have filled the distance between each one. Jax walked toward the burnt one, but stopped taking out a book of leaves. After examining this book he turned and walked down the path of the stake kissed by the fire on its forehead. He would turn around and stop instantly dropping his book and grabbing his sword.

    Jax walked closer to the boy, his shirt still in his hand, and got down into a primal stance near the river's edge whispering to him.

    "Whether I decide to save you or not depends on your answer. Who are you?" For once the predator's glare stared at competition rather than its prey.
  8. The river’s flow was already taking effect, clearing the mind and soothing away pain even as it reduced blood flow from the wound, temporary but it was far better than the alternative. Regardless, helplessness remained at the forefront of all thought even while behind it sharpened mind turned to action. Concealed by the water’s surface, hands sought the bed beneath, gratified as fingers found what lay there. Smooth, large enough to fit in the palm and heavy enough to do real damage if taken upside the head.
    Action was swift and two-fold. With one hand an arc of water was thrown up, akin to sand intended to distract or blind. With the other a stone was flung, aimed generally toward the other’s head, face or neck. Too did the other hand hold a second missile, kept in reserve as the motion of throwing served to lead into the effort of regaining both feet. That lost sword was out of the question, but it wasn’t as important as the discarded pack. With it egress could be made, wound patched and further plans made.
    Such exertion did come at a price of excited flow from the wound to one side, but paid off in the end. Taken at a run and slung haphazardly over one shoulder the pack was a small victory at least. Treeline then, welcoming shadows between. At least, until another figure emerged. Friend or accomplice? Her appearance halted forward movement, a half-circle opted for instead. Both would be kept in sight, trust that this newcomer would throw the other off track long enough for a quick application of first-aid. Just a patch, more could be done once safety was assured.
  9. The shadow paused, changing her stance to one fit for a fight, but held no aggression. The figure before her was unarmed and wounded, while she was armed with a hatchet in her right hand and armoured with a leather jacket. It seemed surreal to be able to fatally injure another human being, even for the means of survival. Maybe the reluctance she held to end the live of a person that did her no wrong made her doomed to fail her goal to join the Conquest whether she had passed the rites nonetheless. "Stand down", she commanded as she made a step forward, her voice possessing more threat than intended. Her back straightened and her stance shifted to a more friendly position, and her hatchet was put in the crack between her pants and belt on the side of her hip. None the less her hands were positioned to fight if he were to attack none the less, or if our friend by the river bedding were to make an attempt.

    ooc: sorry for late/crappy posting, have an unexpected thing that came up, so will be busy for a while.
  10. Jax was surprised by the water and held his arms up to block his face from the sand, but was too late and ended up getting it in his right eye. Another second and he felt the rough texture of a rock scrape the skin off his arm. After rubbing the sand out of his eye with his shirt he looked over to the kid running away straight into the other female, had he left the bag alone he could have let the child be. Jax sheathed his sword and got into the flowing water of the river. He knelt down and eventually disappeared following the river's current downstream. When he stood back up he was only about eight-hundred meters from the two and in front of another set of stakes. When he got out of the water he viewed them and reached for his book, but remembered he'd left it on the bank. Jax walked over and pointed to the burnt stake; "Trapped." His hand shifted to the stake charred on its head; "Hidden Resource." Finally he found the clean stake; "Home Free."

    Jax walked down the path headed by the stake charred on its head and searched for vine, wood, and tinder materials. After some time he found these and a spare handbook. This handbook however was incomplete he would have to search for the original soon. Using the blade he sharpened the stick and jabbed it through a bundle of the vine. After securing the vine on the stick he trekked over to where the two had been seen last.
  11. The new-come female’s order was met with a derisive snort, stone kept firmly in hand despite her wishes. An accomplice, maybe? Upon the other’s reemergence she made no show of recognition, just another bit of human refuse tossed over the wall. Relief made a brief pass as her weapon found its way to her belt but that could hardly be an assurance of intent, she was still willing and capable of a fight. It was a start, at least and even as the other took his place across from them both movements were made to show her at least that the unarmed one was no enemy.
    Still, it wouldn’t be prudent to turn away. Keeping both in view, slow steps cleared the space between her and the other. As she’d make a convenient shield, so too was she neared at an angle meant to place one to her side with a few feet’s grace. This way at least the other’s aggression could be gauged if he decided that hatchet was more of a threat than stone. Words too were finally spoken, soft voice raised just enough to be heard over murmuring water still at hand.
    “Watch him, he’ll take any chance.”
  12. The woman simply met his words with a nod of understanding and would keep an eye out, although she did not yet trust the other enough to let him out of her sight. The motion to fight him was thrown aside and was replaced by a naive hope of cooperation. Now there was the subject of the slender figure heading their way, a potential attacker, but not a potential thread. A wooden knife is no match for a metal hatchet, after all the fibre texture of wood causes it to be unable to hold an edge able to draw blood, let alone cut through leather. Charging him head on, would give the wrong idea of her intentions, but oh how she hated to just stand there and wait. All that was left was for him to draw near and make his intent clear, so she could make a move on.
  13. Jax worked fast when he saw them just standing there keeping a lookout for him. Not ready to make his presence known yet he made his way over to his original camp. He thought about what he was about to do and paused when he saw the fire in the cave still flickering. He shook his head and swiped one of the torches keeping the fire lit. He stormed out the cave, but halted when he realized going any further like that could produce noise giving off his position. Jax was paused again. Could he really take a life like this? Under these circumstances? Jax had yet to show himself a hostile to the girl. He could go back and try diplomacy, but the thought of death fought the thought of peace.

    He stared at the backs of the two worried individuals before dropping his items and carrying the tinder and torch over to the two. Jax stopped and leaned against a tree near them and called out.

    "You two are new here. I know my way around. I have places deemed safe to stay!" Jax was beginning to sweat. The tables had turned. "That guy there he is hurt and his bag contains supplies to deal with injuries like his to some degree. We got off on the wrong foot. How about a truce." Jax swung his body back and forth before stepping slowly out into the light. He gripped the torch with caution careful not to burn the surrounding foliage and stuffed the tinder materials in his pocket. "We must prove ourselves. With our assorted skills I am sure we can do this with ease and escape this death trap. I have no qualms with you girl. Your face is, but a blur to me. However, like I said it is more of the silent one's trust I wish to gain. My life is more endangered by his hands at the moment."
  14. A favorable situation presented, doubts still lingered. Any in this situation knew the stakes, what must be done to curry favor and enter again the safety of city walls. Yet though blood must be shed it was never stated that it must come from one’s peers. Despite misgivings, trust was favorable to lone vies for survival and a team would make better use of this savage land than an individual. A glance cast to the female sought to find her thoughts on this, though the mind behind the gaze was apt to make a choice on its own.

    “Return my sword,” it would serve as a start, gesture of trust on many fronts.

    Pain tightened the words, syllables cut short as the medi-patch’s small but industrious contingent of nanos got to work. The wound would heal and they would give their little bodies to make certain it stayed sealed for some time, space-age sutures in the midst of wilds. Shame the finite supply had to be wasted on a freak accident during the journey back to earth. The pack too stood as leverage, those supplies a boon the other two couldn’t pass up, and were likely to kill for. The situation would remain volatile until they reached a proper understanding. Still, trust had to start somewhere, either here or never.
  15. Jax held a firm grip on the weapon. To give him that blade meant to give up any means of defense against the girl. Jax was hesitant, but a fight was something he wished to avoid and he wanted to leave whether that be by his own life or another's. He grabbed the blade wrapped in the suspender strings and stared at it before tearing through the strings and throwing the blade between him and the boy and girl.

    "Your name boy?" Jax kept the fire in front of him still worried of what they might attempt.

    He was at ease to some degree knowing he could run in the forest and still be able to find his way back to the two, but the girl seemed ready to attack this keeping him on edge and ready to run.

    "I am Jax..." Jax shined the light toward the girl " you know each other?"
  16. A moment passed after blade landed heavily between them, tense but less so than before. Silence reigned then a single step was taken, cautious, gaze fixed on that of the other searching for any motion of renewed hostility. Deliberate motion saw the weapon retrieved, a turn of wrist wiping it clean and returning the blade to its housing. With proper means of defence obtained muscles began gradually to unknit themselves and the once-hardened expression levied softened. The question was given a moment of thought, shoulders offering what answer they could but as ever that would not be enough. instead, there came a question.
    “Does it matter?” Eyes followed the torch’s motion, a shake of the head putting to rest Jax’s second query.
    The same dawning trust given to Jax was too allowed to the girl, their seeming truce hopefully enough to stay her hand in the moments that followed. It had to start somewhere after all and in the wilds working toward a mutual goal was much preferred to conflict with everyone met. Aches of attacks only just past remained fresh despite the efforts so it was understandable that some trepidation hung over the proceedings.
  17. Stricker was used to being a ghost, moving through the trees unnoticed, unobserved. He did the same now, watching the trio below him. His skin suit clung to his muscled form, a small pack containing his minimal supplies slung over one shoulder. Absently, he massaged the old brand on his shoulder as he waited-- for what, he didn't quite know. Were they a threat to him? They were all young, volatile, new to the wilderness around him. The girl worried him. She was tenser than the other two, poised for an attack.

    Jax, the unharmed boy, was attempting piece by sharing whatever knowledge he'd gained--by Stricker's guess, about a year, if he was correct about age. The child, whatever his name was, was badly injured but oddly resilient. In observing the first group he'd seen in months, Stricker made a mistake; when he shifted his weight, his foot slipped and he fell, catching himself on the branch in time but making quite a bit of noise. He cursed under his breath and swung back out of sight, moving quickly.
  18. Jax sighed. The by had yet to trust him and he understood why. He lowered the torch and shot a glare up to a nearby tree. Leaves fell from the tree and adrenaline shot through Jax's veins. He took a step back into the shadow of the tree he had once taken cover in. Motioning to the boy he gestured to the woods and then pointed up to where he had seen the leaves fall. Daring an audible whisper he decided it'd be best to make progress going deeper into the woods. Their standing idly was getting nowhere.

    "Friend?" Jax could easily take this child's life, but he was unable. A coward he needed a warrior that he could support, but an assassin would be dealt with quickly. "Because I've had enough of people as it is..." His glare shifted to the girl then back on to the boy. "Never mind, we have to get moving. She doesn't seem interested in coming. Follow me across the river. "It" seems to be on the trees lining the hill." Jax walked forward across the shore and tossed his torch behind him setting the forest ablaze threatening all those who took shelter in it and ignored the stench of the smoke. "C'mon." Jax took the tinder from his pocket and socked the girl in the back of the head. She dropped instantly, whether she was dead or not Jax did not know. He only ran focused on getting out of sight.
  19. Any considerations about who or what might be climbing around in the foliage above was quickly drowned out by a shrill keen that rose upon the wind as soon as those orange flames were sent to spread amongst brush and trees. Almost at once, the forest came alive with light and sound, the former drowned by the fire and the latter sharp enough to be heard over the river. It was a simple action, but consequences would be dire, the very fact that Jax casually did such a thing marking him a madman.
    For it was that the trees had eyes that watched over anything within their midst. Eyes that took note of things even the pithy humans would never see, relayed through that ever-present glow suffusing leaf and branch and stem. Eyes that turned now all at once to the one who brought those hungry tongues that lapped up their very lives in noisome smoke and ash. Even as feet turned away from the scene, so too did arboreal bodies rush in. The girl was left, Jax doing some little good by knocking her unconscious. He alone would be pursued. Of whoever lurked in the trees it could only be said that they might find themselves overtaken.
    A memory of stone returned amidst animal shrieks as those within the trees struck limb on body to produce a cacophony their throats were unable. Despite pain in shoulder and that deep-set throb in ribs, footsteps were retraced to the mass which marked first steps into this nightmare: a boulder set upon the river’s bank and covered in scrawled carvings. If left untouched as Jax was pursued, there would be a moment or two allowed for scrutiny of those markings. Luck would have it be a marking stone though it was just as likely to be inscrutable.
  20. Stricker dropped to the ground as the trees went up in flames, bashing his head against a branch as he went down without his usual grace. He winced and blinked stars from his eyes. The boy who had dropped the torch--Jax, he reminded himself-- was either very clever or very stupid, depending on his intentions.

    He could not pay attention to the girl lying not fifty yards from where he crouched. His head throbbing in time with his heart, he followed the younger of the pair. He seemed to be more careful than Jax, although badly injured. His vision blurred at the edges when he moved too quickly, however, and vertigo threatened to send him to his knees. He groaned, a soft sound, realizing that his head injury may be slightly more serious than previously believed.

    But he managed to follow the boy to a marked boulder, where he watched him stare intently at the carvings. Stricker touched his fingers to his head as another wave of vertigo washed over him, and when he pulled his hand away it was red with his own blood. Mixed with the fading adrenaline and smoke inhalation, the injury was suddenly almost too much and Stricker staggered, struggling to stay upright. He hadn't had a serious injury in a long time, and while seasoned and wickedly strong, he was not indestructible.
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