Iwaku: Azazel

Discussion in 'ROLEPLAY GRAVEYARD' started by Bob Ross, Nov 7, 2011.

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  1. [video=youtube;YVyZgUeN6UI]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YVyZgUeN6UI&feature=related [/video]


    The dust kicked up, when Thomas stamped out the little fire he had going for breakfast. The borders to the Northern Wastes where less than 50 miles away. The bright colors of the trees had given away to leafless trees here in the land of the Western Confederacy.

    “Such an annoyance, these lands are.” A man said while tossing his cigarette on the ground. He hated the fall. Its weather was never stable. It could be raining one day, warm another, and then freezing. “The damned Ministry of Traveling makes these lands out to be the prettiest in world.”

    He took his sunglasses off, revealing two coal grey eyes. He rubbed his temples. Thomas had not gotten much sleep while on this mission.

    “Eros, I need an update on our current coordinates.” He said.

    “Alright, father.” A young woman then appeared from the tent that they been sleeping in.

    In her hands, she had a GPS device that had been liberated from one of their “prizes.” This father and daughter pair were bounty hunters and occasionally assassins. They were considered some of the best in all of Iwaku. Of course, they did little to actually promote themselves. That was not in their best interests; especially, with a king like Azazel in power.

    “The device says that we are at 40, 40, 43. If you can make any sense out this highly irregular reading…”

    Eros began to press random buttons, trying to get the GPS to work. It was proving to be a little more difficult than she had hoped. Neither of them were tech savvy.

    She was cut off then her father spoke, “The damn Razbots are interfering with electronics again. Conceal yourself.”

    He could sense something coming from the West. If they were indeed the Razbots, Eros’ main usage of poisons would be useless against them. She had enough combat training to deal with humans, but machines were a different story.


    Sure enough, the sky was soon covered by a large black cloud of menacing looking man-bat shaped robots. There were at least five battalions flying overhead. It was impressive.

    “It looks like things are still sour in the Wastelands,” Thomas said to himself. “Azazel must have sent orders to his lackeys that need to send some of their troops in order to help with the occupation.”

    He kept his hand on one of the holsters. Thomas’ eyes stared up at the sky. He never trusted robots. Soulless beings, that operated under laws created by some man named Asimov. Though just how closely these Razbots really worked under those said laws were a moot point.

    They passed over head without indecent.

    “Eros, make sure that you wear the peasant clothing today. They’ll ignore us; the commoners of these lands are very docile. We were lucky with the tree cover this time around.” Thomas then said. “Make it snappy as well, we don’t have all day to waste, since the GPS is out that’ll make it all the much harder to track our little winged friend.”

    He then pulled a blue-green feather out from the lower pocket of his batter-looking suit coat. It was of a rare variety, there was no bird in all of Iwaku that had such feathers, he knew this much.
  2. The Northern Wasteland - Insanity.

    This place wasn't so crazy any more. But then, who would want to name a place 'Rationally Ambiguous'? Insanity sounds better. It isn't the only piece of Iwaku on his mind, but it's a start. Fel was talking excitedly to Kestrel. “You know, we were there when Azazel killed Paorou. My only question is, if Azazel had the Sword of Iwaku and Paorou had the Sword of Iwaku, which was-”

    “Oh, shut up, will you?” The swords woman cut him off. “You know, for someone who is supposed to have an identical soul to me, it's odd how we are so different.” She chuckled, “I'm just kidding, but I have heard this twenty times today.”

    The older man looked around, shocked at her tone, but left it alone. Behind them stood the earl of Hamburg, ever present was Collie upon his back.

    “Souls aren't what we are. We're Authors. And we rule this world.” No, that wasn't correct, but it soon would be. In time, he would show Iwaku what the real power of an Author is. In time. “Kestrel... I, we, will rule this world. I must get that sword.” The area of Insanity was itself in deep winter, whereas the rest of Iwaku was in autumn. Snow drifts were everywhere in this vacant town, the only footsteps were of the three. The ever smiling King Weavil tread the hardest in the snow, often sinking knee deep. It didn't seem to break his stride. The cold air was, at this point, refreshing. They had all been here since Paorou was killed, the Crimson King falling by his own sword. Some said he would be back. Fel knew this to be a lie.

    Death by the sword of Iwaku was final, like the oft fortold 'ban hammer.' The quandary was, that when Paorou held the sword it was a twisted visage of beauty, and while Azazel held it it looked as if it were a razor sharp angel's wing. Was it that it channeled it's use for the wielder? Or did they will it to look as it is? He would find out soon enough. And the other problem... Megane. Was he such a problem? Or could he be easily brought down?

    So it was that Fel and his band traveled north through the wasteland formerly known as Insanity – to conquer.</pre>
  3. The Western Confederacy

    The air seemed to distort itself for a moment, almost appearing to bend itself. An instant later, all was normal again, and no sign of the distortion remained, aside from Miru standing atop a large hill, staring at the sight ahead. A small kingdom lingered on the edge of his view, hidden behind the autumn foliage that decorate this area yearly. Even in the harsh winter, it was always autumn here...He took a step forward, the auburn leaves crunching beneath his shoes. So it's like the others...So this area belongs to Chopsticks...

    Miru took a look at the sky with a warm smile. With a sky like that, it was easy to forget what was happening...Or rather, what would be happening soon...There was still time, luckily... The smile disappeared from his face as he rolled up his right sleeve, revealing the face of a clock tattooed on his arm. However, it seemed to move just like the hands of an actual clock, minus the ticking. The time read 10:30 PM. He sighed as he once more took his sights to the sky above. "So at the most...I'll have one more use before...that. So this will probably be the last shot...The events should start soon. It's a shame this sky won't stay so pure for much longer..."

    With that, he set his path towards the kingdom ahead, keeping a moderate pace as he continued his inner monologue.
  4. "Hidden Within Trees" ~ The Western Forest

    The soft wind was just enough to wake a sleeping body, barely the size of a golfball, nestled deep within a shroud of old, wrinkly bark. It clearly was of autumn season in the West, as this never changed. The trees were forever trapped to lose their leaves, over and over again, without a moment to relax and breathe in fresh sunshine and chlorophyll. It was a sad state to be lost in, no flashing red sign to point out an escape route. Not quite spring, where one could feel renewed, replenished, but not exactly winter, giving up all hope and dieing, knowing they would come back in another life. No, this was fall. As beautiful as can be, with the large collection of warm hues all around, it was a dull, neverending pattern for the plants. But for the little one laying inside one example, well, it was a bittersweet phenomenom. Tiny eyelids slipped open, silvery orbs staring ahead, glazed over with a tired tone. Shaking a mass of wild, brunette curls, the mane setting into place somehow like magic, the figure wiggled out of it's curled position. Arms poked out far ahead in front of her, the spine was arched like a cat, a loud yawn following the sequence of actions, though it would sound out like a gentle 'squeak' to anyone of normal size in earshot. Peering out of the giant hole that acted as a door to her home, the weather seemed quite nice so far this day. This was fabulous news, seeing as it had been nothing but cold, cold, and more cold as of late. Flopping backwards onto her rearend, hidden of course beyond layers of lacey fabric, the girl sat straight up, legs apart with hands folded in the open middle space. Silence accompanied the dead space around her, but not for long, as a sharp rumble vibrated up along her tummy. Cheeks flashed over a bright pink, such an embaressing noise, even with no one else to hear it. Snapping her head from side to side, eyes scanned over for something edible in sight. A large piece of bread laid craddled inside of a leaf, beside it a third of an apple, and next to that an unfinished acorn piece. Oh, all the choices to behold, all the wonderful options. The pixie could hardly contain her excitement. Bouncing up to her microscopic pair of feet, protected by a pair of white mary janes with even tinier bows upon the straps, and long, softly laced stockings, the girl ran over to the layout of morsels. Stopping upon reaching the buffet, the soft jingling sound coming from a collar around her thin neck echoed against the inner tree. Raising up a palm to cease the bell, a gentle smile played upon sugar plum lips, this individual made from spice and everything nice in addition.

    Snacking on a small piece of the fruit from before, Knives found herself slowly stepping out from under her current home. Peering up to the sky, it was a magnificant blend of shades. It was the view of such wonders that brought her to appreciate life even more than before. The kind swirls of pink, dull stabs of gray and comforting orange tinted clouds acted in harmony with one another, like a loving family. Family. And there went the smile. Staring to her sweet, dripping item of nectar, the small head tilted to the side. The air was already working around her, turning a small part of the apple slightly darker with oxygen. Still, she knew with the ugly appearence, it would tickle her tongue and send delicious shivers down to her stomach. No matter the exterior, the interior would be simply ravishing. Noming on the final piece happily, dimples reappeared over at the corners of her lips. Hands on her hips, the small black wings raised up, twitching off some droplets of dew that fell upon the ends. A matching tail flickered in the open area behind her, coming out from a makeshift hole in her dress. This, hopefully, would be a fine day. Though, the feeling of a certain thickness in the air affected her, her nostrils flaring up for a moment longer. Was something different about this place? Knives furrowed her brows, hugging her torso with fragile arms, palms rubbing for warmth against upper limbs. Breathing out cold air, it was decided this was too cool of an environment to be out in so early still in the day. Turning on her heels, the woodland creature began to stride back into her tree, stopping short as the sound of crackling leaves caught her ears. Holding her body still, muscles tensed up, eyes wide, it was as if she believed truly she could blend in like a chaemeleon. What if there was a predator around? She was not one to favor violence.. especially in the morning. Frowning ever so gently, spooked already for the first time of the day, Knives dashed back into the hole, blending in with some shadows. She told herself she would go out today and try to explore, possibly socialize with some other beings of the area. She still would.. maybe. Eventually.
  5. The Icy Forests - Northern Wastelands


    "Nú hvar er ég? Ég var bara með fjallinu ... þar kom þetta skógur koma frá?" Zypher muttered to himself as he stepped gingerly down from his little perch on a branch. The last thing he remembered was stargazing next to the volcano, making star charts and suddenly he blacked out and when he awoke he was in the middle of a forest. Gerði ég reika alla leið út hér og man ekki? He thought, pulling his jacket around himself a bit tighter.

    Left with no other options but to hike down the pathway that spread out before him he put his feet to the packed road and began to march, hopefully he would find someone that could point him back to the university, or at least the volcano so he could find his way home. As he marched along the path he could've sworn every once in a while he heard the shuffling of animals or maybe some other people, after all huldufólk were everywhere lately, it wouldn't be strange for him to run across their homes. He just started ignoring the sounds but his hand dropped to the handle on his sword, prepared to use it if he needed to. Sometimes he'd catch something flittering out of the corner of his eye but the only sounds for most of his hike were the sounds of his shoes crunching in the snow and his own breathing. He pulled his jacket around himself a bit tighter and continued on his way.

    Alas as he walked along the path nothing crossed him, nor appeared. The light in the sky brightened considerably, and Zypher assumed it was about noon by the time he had come to a clearing in the woods, or was it the edge, Zypher couldn't be certain. However he did see a few people talking amongst themselves. Finally! Someone who could direct him back home! Maybe Reykjavik was close by already, or at least the volcano? He marched forward and waved at the two armored people, "Halló! Leitt að trufla en annað hvort þú veist hvaða leið það er að Reykjavík?" He put on a smile as best as he could as he drew closer.
  6. Western Confederacy- The Forest

    The trees in the western confederacy were the most beautiful, especially when the leaves all turning bright reds and yellows. The only problem was it made it especially difficult for Harpy to blend in with her white, blue and green feathers.

    "Talk about being out of one's environment..." She mumbled to herself with a bit of a cheeky grin, currently standing on a sturdy branch of a giant tree, looking over the forest curiously to see where she would go that day.

    She couldn't help but remember that back on the "other side", what she referred to her life as a human in the other realm, that it was actually summer there and terribly hot at that. Maybe this was her dreams way of telling her she missed the cold of fall? She wasn't exactly sure, but it seemed that way since she entered this area that was only every fall. She didn't mind it too much though, it meant that she would be enjoying some nice cool breezes instead of the humid air of the summer that she would have to face once she went to sleep in Iwaku. Now was not the time to think about sleep though, she had to get moving!

    She had started to notice that something or someone was following her as she wandered the Iwaku world. Maybe it was the natural instincts that she had gained when she turned into the bird woman here or possible that fact that people were starting to whisper whenever she wandered into a village to eat and explore. She wasn't completely certain if her feelings were correct though, she had been wrong about being followed before. She did not think about it for very long though and flapped her large blue and green wings, she had some distance to make after all. This strange world wouldn't explore itself!
  7. The Northern Wasteland - Beside a thriving primrose flower

    'By winter’s hands, all is made white.
    Old as she flies out into the night...'

    This place was the epitome of sadness for Umbra, yet here she was citing poetry in her mind. Winter was once a beloved season for her. Now, she wasn't so sure. Snow, ice, cold, wind... They were constant reminders of that night when everything changed. Here she sat, cross legged in the cold snowflakes, right next to a flower with yellow petals. Melancholy as this made her, there was something comforting about this wasteland. It was a sense of belonging; she certainly didn't belong anywhere else.

    Behind her mask, she made a smile and looked to the primrose at her side. This little fella caught her eye from a distance. A vibrant red, contrasting against the bright white. Everything here was dead, so why wasn't this plant? She set her flail down on the other side of her so that her hands and lap were free of weight, allowing her to reach out to touch this magnificent flower. Ice was glazing over the petals and the leaves were curling up before they'd fall to the ground. A slow process of dying, she thought. Umbra was impressed with this little one's desire to fight the icy hands of winter, and the unhealthy soils of these lands.

    'You have no chance, you know. It snows here everyday. But I admire your strength, your courage.'

    A childish giggle could be heard behind her mask, sounding metallic and echoed. Following that, she made a cough. She'd forgotten the pains that came with laughing. Then again, she hardly cared. Umbra would embrace every opportunity she had to be happy.

    Her breathing was noisy, with every inhale and exhale. It always was. There was a passerby who once mistook her face's contraption for a Darth Vader costume piece, complete with his breathing sounds. She wished that was the case. Not just because it would mean she wasn't sick; that would be a fantastic collector's item!

    There was probably work to be done. Umbra was tired from her travels around this dump, though. She needed a break and the company of this surviving flower was nice. Sitting here allowed her to reminiscence and reflect. As she let her thoughts take course, she brought her knees to her chest and hugged them closely, allowing the falling snowflakes to pepper her dark hair.
  8. Plains of the Southern Cross

    Rameses Abraxas looked out over the windswept plain, squinting under the harsh light of the sun above in a nearly cloudless sky. For as far as the eye could see, nothing stood out against the backdrop of the flat, nondescript landscape. Not a single building, tree, or even so much as a solitary hilltop rose to obscure the horizon, shimmering like a desert mirage from the heat that rose from the earth. A sparse covering of dry grass stretched out over the ground at his feet, spotted here and there by patches of bare, sunbaked dirt where not even the hardiest plant growth could take root. The blades of grass were short and so withered by the sun that they seemed to cling pathetically to the soil, not daring to raise themselves against the scorching heat. This place was not a desert, but it was close.

    He had spent enough time in the deserts of Egypt that such unforgivingly sweltering expanses of land no longer really presented a challenge when it came to going on long trekks. He could stay there for an almost indeterminate length of time, so long as he was able to find and then carefully conserve a supply of water. Water was life, and life could only last so long as it was available. That was the lesson all desert peoples were forced to learn as a way of life. If it had not been for the Nile, a gift from the gods themselves, his own homeland would never have achieved the greatness that had made them a beacon of civilization on the dark continent. They would be no better than the desert nomads, desperately scratching out an existence and forced to tend to their herds of goats and other pitiful livestock, wandering their entire lives without ever knowing what it was like to have a true home. Fate had been kind to his people, except for the scourge of the Hyksos that had fallen upon them. Were it not for that, he would not have found himself in this strange place, contracted to hunt down one of this land's former rulers and then bring him to justice before its current ones.

    It unnerved him to be here, so far from home and so out of place. The Orb of Ra had transported him to a strange and unfamiliar realm, and as far as he knew there was no way to go back. No way under his own power, at least. The mysterious, hooded figure who claimed to be in control of this region had promised him a reward if he was able to bring this renegade before him. Whoever this Asmodeus was, he obviously had something or knew something that made him a threat to those in power here. If Rameses would be able to track him down, capture him, and take him in, that would hopefully mean the end of his sojourn in this place which he did not care for nor care about truly. So far, however, he had seen no sign of anyone but himself being in the area, and as for where to start looking, he was unsure what plan of action he could take that might prove to be fruitful. There were no traces of human habitation and apparently no places to hide, leaving him without a clue as to where to start his search. It was frustrating to say the least.

    Asmodeus. Where can you be?
  9. The Kingdom of the East - A nondescript city tavern

    The tavern was loud, boisterous, and crowded with men and mer of all types.

    Everything that Was found fascinating and intriguing. People meeting together in social places, laughing, dancing, fighting. Sitting in a quiet shadowed corner of the tavern, he was mostly undisturbed by the masses that traveled by. One or two might glance at him, puzzled by his attire. The worn uniform of the Old Iwaku Kingdom was something of a rarity these days. Not because it was illegal, but … well, at least the patch on his left shoulder avoided a lot of awkward questions. People still recognized the patch of a combat mage after all these years, and no one wanted to tangle or annoy one.

    Was glanced down at his beer mug, swirling the last of the golden liquid around the bottom of the glass. Not that he required liquids or food as much as his organic counterparts, but he had been designed to use what he consumed for energy. Besides, it would not have done much good for a guide of a new arrival to sit him or her down to eat and drink only to watch.

    Was frowned trying to remember those times, only to give up in defeat and a sigh.

    “Have ya heard?” Was focused in on the conversation of two mercenaries hunched over a table nearby.

    “Nawh, what?”

    “Suppos’d to be ah cage fight later today, big money, several fighters.”

    “Rather risky with Prince Jack back in town isn’t it”

    “Prince who?”

    “Jack! Jack Shade you dolt! Leader of this damned kingdom!”

    The first mercenary shrugged, not concerned. “Suppos’d to be good fighters, ‘n good money, interested in finding out where?”

    A flicker of interest sparked behind Was’s eyes. He was interested, very much so.
  10. [video=youtube;KY-x8N_4eQc]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KY-x8N_4eQc[/video]
    North of a town called Iniquity, in the Western Gosai Mountains
    The name -- of it -- is "Autumn" --
    The hue -- of it -- is Blood --
    An Artery -- upon the Hill --
    A Vein -- along the Road --

    Great Globules -- in the Alleys --
    And Oh, the Shower of Stain --
    When Winds -- upset the Basin --
    And spill the Scarlet Rain --

    It sprinkles Bonnets -- far below --
    It gathers ruddy Pools --
    Then -- eddies like a Rose -- away --
    Upon Vermilion Wheels --

    -Emily Dickinson

    A chill breeze rippled through Ozymandius's short black hair as she stood on the mountainside, looking down on the sleepy small town that lay half-obscured below her in the morning mist. The trees here were somehow less vibrant. Drab. Bleached and faded, like old bone. It was a little sad; one of the nicer things about these lands was the vivid autumnal foliage that the West was known for. Here, though, even the town itself was dull and quiet, a handful of stick and mud and stone scattered across the little dell in which it nestled like brown and white building blocks. It was an agricultural town, judging by the stretches of plowed field skirting the edges. A small, sad little place, just waiting for her to descend and breathe new life into its bones.

    Such was her duty as a faithful priest of Ossochanter.

    "Seiji," she spoke up, turning her head to look over her shoulder at her protector. The grizzled man was a new traveling companion, but she had no fear in trusting him. They had a contract, one quite difficult to break, and she intended to uphold her side of the bargain. "Do you know this town?"

    Ozymandius had no first-hand experience with the world of Iwaku, having been sheltered in the Ossochantric temple from a young age, up until her recent ordainment and pilgrimage. A passing knowledge, yes, but even those who moved in the outside world had difficulty keeping track. Iwaku was not a fixed landscape, but a constantly shifting and reshaping mass, as the Ossochanter made it so. Without the proper rites, however, it became chaos. Unbalanced... But she was getting carried away again, and she shook herself mentally. No, she had little knowledge of the world's unfixed geography. This was another reason she'd needed to go to the lengths of finding a man like Seiji Silvertongue.

    Extending a gloved hand, she caught the hide tethers fixed to Rueful's legs as it dived down toward her. The skeletal microraptor had been wheeling above, giving her a second perspective of the town in her mind's eye. She had raised the familiar from its fossilized prison as part of her ordainment rites, and she did not think she could have picked a better creature; Rueful had many uses.

  11. From the cover of their tent, Eros poked her head out to listen to the words of her father. The calls were always close, she thought morosely to herself. The land was in unrest and the forces subtly warring against one another for control were ripping the land apart at the seams. The Razbots were the most unnerving feature of this landscape to her though, since Eros had no way of combating them and she was thus dependent on her father for the fight against them. As many though as came at once, she worried that even her father would be overpowered.

    Inside the tent, Eros shed her clothes that were used on the job. Her usual clothes were minimal on excess fabric, capable of great stealth and conducive to moving quickly. The peasant clothes in contrast seemed cumbersome to her, extra cloth on the dress that billowed out around her legs and made it hard for her to move. It was dissatisfying to be in these and she felt almost as though she had been given a handicap. Even the peasant shoes were required to complete the guise but they did not enfold her feet like her regular footwear and instead seemed to slip around her toes and threaten to come loose. She did not like this ensemble, but it was necessary to avoid detection.

    "I'm clothed, father. Do you really thing that the creature whose feather that is would be near here? This is such a bleak and desolate land, whereas that feather speaks of a vibrant plumage. She would not fit in at all." This was the total amount of questioning Eros ever ventured and even if he had never answered her queries, she would do as her father requested. She was seeking knowledge, probing into mechanics that she did not understand in hopes of learning more. Eros was already bundling their things to transport, getting ready to move. The journey ahead would not be easy but it never was.

    [align=right]-Fifty miles from the Border to the Northern Waste; Western Confederacy[/align]
  12. [video=youtube;GOEJJhgPa90]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOEJJhgPa90[/video]

    Somewhere in the Western Gosai Mountains, outside a town named Iniquity...

    "No damn clue."

    That was the simple response that came from the burly, gruff man that stood behind and to the right of the girl who had just spoken. He was wearing a red coat that hung loosely around his body, with a black tank top underneath. One sleeve billowed out by itself, his arm tucked inside the coat handling a cigar with lightly-burning embers. The other arm hung limply to his other side, a jar dangling from bare fingers. Emerald eyes were hidden underneath dark-tinted glasses with circular lenses, and dark brown hair ruffled lightly on a gentle breeze. At his back was the most outstanding part of his appearance: a massive, curved sword held together in a long, leather baldric.

    Seiji Silvertongue had not been long in this world. Bits and pieces reminded him of things from his past, but trying to remember what and from where was proving to be more than a little difficult. It was like trying to find the origin of a reflection in a hall of mirrors with a blinding mist guarding the way. It irritated him to not have these answers.

    He had been from Moonwings, he knew that much. There, women reigned supreme (not that Seiji had much problem with it), and there all manner of curiousities and insanities made their nests. It was a testing ground for his prowess, true, but it had also been a place of great fun. He had chaffed their leaders, and romanced those who had no wish to be romanced and romanced those he had been warned of romancing! Yes, great strife had been left upon his wake.

    Now, though, he was somewhere new. Woken up after a long stretch of black. Had he died again? He didn't know, and he didn't care. All he knew was that after some wandering, he had run into little Ozymandius. She was a pretty girl, charming through her quirks and assertion. He would have walked right by her had she not caught his attention, and doing that was rather hard (from a certain point of view, of course).

    "Nope, not a clue," he reiterated as he stepped up closer to her. He had been wary of the little ... thing, she had carted around with her, but he was content in the knowledge he could blow it up. Her, too, but that was neither here nor there-- they had a contract, and he would follow it to the most minute detail. He was her guardian, and nothing would scratch her so long as he breathed.

    "Why don't we go down and take a look?" He took another drag of his cigar and tilted his head back, exhaling the thick, pungent smoke. As he did so, he revealed the long, jagged scar that ran from underneath his right ear to the base of his neck, along his collar bone.

  13. -The Western Confederacy-

    On a small trail worn through the forests, a girl awoke.

    It's cold...

    Kino stirred slightly, then opened her eyes. Wherever she was, it was fall: trees were shedding their leaves, forming a carpet of brown, red and gold across the ground.

    She sat up, looking around her a bit more in detail. It wasn't any forest she recognized

    ...Somewhere new? Then, perhaps-

    Kino quickly put a hand on her chest. Underneath her uniform, she could feel the smooth stone that had bonded with her skin.

    No luck..

    Sighing, Kino flopped down on her back, watching the clouds pass by. It was peaceful, at least, wherever she was. She would have probably laid there a very long time indeed, when she heard the sound of footsteps approaching from ahead on the path.

    The girl sat up again, looking at the newcomer.

    Silence ensued.
  14. Southern Cross - The Town of Anton


    A shack nearby.


    He could have been anyone. As he sat wearing her skin he made little clicking noises. Click click click. He was an insect. He had mandibles. Click click click.

    He had chosen a big girl. It would stop him floating away. Her skin was heavy and required leather belts to strap it in place.

    A dark and tidy room. The television was on and playing footage of car crashes. Then the radio hummed in the opposite corner - topical news debates and the occasional Jumi guitar solo. On the third wall were photos and newspaper clippings. The Cbox Killer had struck again. By the fourth wall were his mannequins, turned so they couldn't look at him.

    It was hard to hold the folder with her flabby skin on his hands. Every now and then it would slip. He clicked again, click click click, and turned the file to read a two page spread.

    <table align=center><tr><td>Supplemental Crime Report<td>
    <tr><td>SCPD<td>Case Number: 96-12-180
    <tr><td>Victim:<td>Annabel Wade N/F
    <tr><td>Location:<td>1219 Jonamach Street, bedroom
    <tr><td>Date:<td>04 Apr 3GE
    <tr><td>Weapon:<td>Bruising consistent with adult right hand (gloved)
    <tr><td>Reporting Officer:<td>Natalie Verortus, Detective Sergeant</table>

    He lay back in his chair, letting the folder rest on the loose flaps of breast skin. The chair was padded and had a mirror and side table mounted. Like a dentist's chair. It rocked slightly with his weight and his feet dangled off the end.

    Azazel chose to choke. Always. It was the best way. And no one would hurt him for it.

    He had filled the room with sand from the desert, but mixed it with blood so it had its own colour. They say it's best to make things your own. Because you're worth it. As he rose from his chair and swung his legs down, he felt it squidge between his toes. He crossed the room to his mannequins while loosening the belts.

    Then he peeled her skin away and draped it over the nearest mannequin, leaving behind a blood-smeared endoskeleton.


    Asmodeus lit a cigarette then reached for something from the next dummy. A pair of cat ears, surgically removed and mounted on a wire frame. He placed them on his head, took a long drag, arched his back and let the sound rush out from his lungs.

  15. Jarakahl sat in the empty arena, in one of the many seats that surrounded the cage that hung from the ceiling by four gargantuan chains that looked like they were made to bind a giant. In half an hour or so, he would once again be in the cage, fighting for money. It wasn't the first time he had been in that cage, or any sort of other fighting arena. Jarakahl had been fighting for money for many years now - Almost three decades. Already in his late forties, the fighter still looked like he was in the prime of his youth, yearned after by many girls, envied by many other guys.

    In his hands were his bladed knuckles, that he slid up and down his fingers. Occasionally, he'd clench his fist and take a swing at the air, feeling the air part between the sharp blades. Today, he was going to be allowed to use weaponry during the fight, and he wasn't sure if it was a good thing or a bad thing. Although he had won pretty much every fight that he had entered, Jarakahl still felt the nervousness before the start of every fight. Perhaps it was a good thing, to stop himself from becoming overconfident. He sure wasn't going to kill his opponent in this fight if he won.

    It's just not his style.

    It made him more famous, too.

    Jarakahl smiled at the thought of becoming more famous in the underground gambling world than he already was, and he chuckled to himself at how he hasn't yet lost all of his youthful exuberance. Perhaps his power not only slowed down his physical aging, but his mental aging.

    "And just like they always say. Be child-like, not childish."

    The fighter's laugh echoed through the empty arena and he saw the first few spectators stream into the seating area. Oops, they weren't supposed to see him slacking out here. It's time to get back to the .. Whatever you call the place you sit in before the fight begun.

    With his superhuman agility, Jarakahl leapt away from the seats and out through a small, discreet exit at the bottom of the arena. Now, he just had to wait for the announcer to call his name, and he would exit and enter the cage.
  16. The Northern Wastelands

    There is a time and place for meetings. It is impossible to know such times until they happen. Some, some are fate, some are chance, all are change.

    Fel and Kestrel were still discussing the future while Collie and King Weavel stood solemnly behind. They were ostensibly listening, but Fel wasn't so sure they cared. They got along rather well, and would stick together, for now. His only true companion was, sadly, himself. And not himself as he in his body, but a gender bent and younger version of himself.

    "Halló! Leitt að trufla en annað hvort þú veist hvaða leið það er að Reykjavík?"

    These words caught him by surprise. Both he and Kestrel visibly tensed, though the Earl of Hamburg and his young friend did not seem to pay any mind. The two knights wheeled to the side, hands on their blades intimidatingly.

    He was tall and thin with white hair cropped just above his eyes, and he wasn't speaking any language that Fel knew. The boy didn't look like he had ever held a sword, but that didn't mean he wasn't dangerous.

    “State your purpose, please, and speak plain common,” Fel said aloud.

    “Ég er að leita Reykjavík, gera þú vita hvaða hætti það er?“

    If Fel could have understood, he still would have thought it was a simply complicated request. He didn't, and so he turned to Collie. “Hey, Collie, do you have any spells that could make this kid speak our language?” The little girl abruptly looked away, obviously offended by his arrogance. After all, who was he to nigh demand something from her? She wasn't, however, so offended that Weavel would strike, but he knew her temper was quick, and his fist was quicker. “Please? Look at him, he's a lost kid. He could die up here in Insanity if he didn't know what the hell was going on.”

    At this, although she still refused to look at him, her eyes rolled. She began the beginning paces of a spell. It was not anything really 'majestic,' and it seemed like a little dweomer that anyone with magical aptitude could learn. Fel's eyes moved to Kestrel again, who shrugged, then to the boy. This boy wasn't scared, he didn't think, and he certainly didn't look aggressive. Yet, Fel couldn't bring himself to let go of his sword. Kestrel didn't either.

    Thirteen seconds later, by the knight's count, and Collie was finished. A part of him, the one who remembered magic from his own land, was disappointed, the other thankful for not having to see a reminder of home so blatantly. The spell wasn't flashy at all, but he tried to speak to the kid again.

    “Ho, boy, what is your name? And one more question before you speak, where did you come from?” It was a legitimate question, as Kestrel had juts been back from scouting not twenty minutes prior to this. She herself was still toying with a gem on the hilt of her sword, although she did turn aside and tell Collie: “I think he means to say thank you...” under her breath.
  17. Miru had only just begun his journey a few minutes ago, but already, he had come across someone...different. Sitting in front of him was a teenage girl, dressed in what he assumed was her school uniform. She had a fair skin tone, olive green eyes, and a rather quizzical look on her face. Long navy blue hair fell majestically from atop her head, catching Miru's eye immediately. She was rather attractive, actually... Who's this? I don't remember her...Is she from somewhere else? Hmm...

    He grabbed Kino's hand gently, pulling her up off the ground. "Are you umm...Are you okay?" He quickly let go of her hand, to avoid any kind of unpleasantness. "Oh, um...My name's Miru...and you are...?" She seemed to be a bit tired out from something or another... Maybe a stop by the local bar was in order. He wasn't sure what role she'd play in this story yet, but there was no point in being mean...
  18. "Uh, yeah...I'm fine."

    Kino brushed some stray leaves off her clothes, making sure to check behind her for any missed by a first glance. From there, she started picking them out of her hair. "...My name's Kino...You haven't heard of me?"

    "Well, I uh....Keep busy a lot, so I guess not..."
    If he wanted her full attention, Miru wasn't getting it; Kino was for the moment still occupied with getting the leaves off of her skirt.
    "…It was all over the news…Where is this place?"

    "This is uh," Miru stopped to glance around him, "...This is outside the Western Confederacy...Where it's always fall...Are you from here...?"

    "Always fall…?" Kino stopped her preening to look at the boy, a quizzical look on her face. "…No, I don't think I am…"
    Now that she got a good look at him, things seemed even stranger than before. Nobody ever dressed like that back home, for sure. It looked cool, but...still kind of weird. Like he was a character in a comic book, or something.

    "You don't think...? Do you have amnesia, then?...Or maybe you're just tired...Maybe we should relax at the bar for a bit, what do you say?" Not from here?...Did she come from another realm...? I should watch her...

    The girl shook her head.
    "No, I don't have amnesia...It's kind of cold out, though...a bar sounds nice."
  19. Requisitioned Nerf Tower (Undisclosed locale)

    The throne room – for it indeed, if it ever hadn't, gained a throne room – was lit up like a firework show. It always was. Azazel didn't sleep. He didn't need to. The sconces around the throne itself shone a metallic purple and blue flame, apart from the one before it. That one shone brilliant white, as if it were reflecting the sun itself.

    This particular flame was his scrying stone transformed by omnipresent magics leeched from the sword of Iwaku.

    Hell, wasn't this a gas? He could spy without the Razbots, and nobody was the wiser!

    Azazel kept his face behind a mask, and with, he supposed, due reason. He wasn't the prettiest fellow around. Several millennia stuck to a rock in a desert in which he couldn't see, that could mar someone both inside and out. It was like, for God, the punishment for teaching humans how to live would go on infinite loop, even after the second coming, he had sat there, forgotten until the world restarted. Again. And again. And, finally, again. Point taken?

    That, my friends, mi amigos, is not why I am here. I atoned. So must Asmodeus – if that is really his name.

    Azazel, on the flip side, wasn't all there. He put his faith in all the wrong people. Revolutionaries, he thought of them. Tyrants they were. Chaos. Palonis. Chopsticks. Shade. Psychopath's all of them, and yet, he doesn't even care.

    Does he?
  20. The Northern Wastes:

    My business is concluded for the time being, now for something to eat.

    The emperor would go foraging himself, not wanting to be the type of leader who made his servants do everything. He came cheerfully around a bush, holding a fat mouse in his mouth when he saw Umbra, she was facing the other way, and he sensed something, a trace of melancholy, and a trace of comfort at the same time. He approached silently and brushed his face against the side of her leg, the scent glands in his eyes claming her as his, though most humans only thought of this as an act of affection.

    After he'd gotten her attention, he lay down in front of her just out of reach. Placing his meal on the snowy ground he began to speak, in the language of cats "You seem lost human, and the wastes are not a forgiving place as is, let alone in winter." He'd doubted she'd understand what he said, to most his language sounded like a mewling kitten. His ancestors had prefferred it that way. He might stoop to speaking the Human language, if just to have a convorsation with someone who wasn't a politician sometime today.

    Elsewhere in the wastes:

    A log groaned and cracked under a massive weight, while a cooking fire crackled softly before it. 3 meters of Silver power-armored warrior was the explaination to both, as he sat to rotate his meal, the beast was unidentifiable, and given the nature of the wastes would probably kill anyone who tried to eat it, save for it's current patron. He was about ready to eat when he'd heared voices, in a language he scarcely understood, thankfully Pratus had installed an Auto-Translator into his armor, only he needed to get closer for it to work.

    With surprising grace for something that large, he approached, taking great care to not be noticed.

    “Ég er að leita Reykjavík, gera þú vita hvaða hætti það er?“

    His suit translated, it was a language forigen to it, but it had structure. He needed more time for the Translator to work, a simple sentance wasn't enough for it's system to go on.


    The Cat Emperor approaches fluffy, while GMK sneaks around some.
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