Iwaku World - A fateful meeting - Porg meets Obskeree.

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The Grey Space was a lonely place, but there was always someone Obskeree could go to when she found herself there. It was there she headed, that fixed point in the endless nothingness, only to find something she had never expected. The temple wall was whole - but that was all there was of it. No shuffling god, no altar, just the wall and the grand entrance doors. Curiously, Obskeree opened one door to reveal a bathroom, and part of a kitchen.

"What is going on…?" she uttered, pulling Slesh up into a hug for moral support. Slesh remained motionless and didn't answer - not that she had expected him to. She flew hesitantly into the kitchen space, the corner of which was piled high with the random objects usually found in the Neake's storage bays. "I'm worried," she whispered to the puppet.

In the slice of a Kitchen a small black-purple circle appeared on the floor a large oblong door shape grew from it, and Jack walked out, stumbling slightly as he realised the floor was sloped, and finding his footing by grabbing a cupboard and a part of the worktop. He took a second to breathe as the corridor of darkness dissipated and then worked himself upright, taking stock of the situation.

In front of him was a huge wooden door and what appeared to be the missing end of the temple. "Hrrrm, that's pretty strange…" He mused to himself, before turning to open the cupboard door and grabbing a few missmatched mugs "Phew, none of them are damaged, fantastic, now.. where's Gary's bedroom here, I'd better get his pillow, I guess" He began pushing at the huge wooden door as he monologued to himself.

Obskeree panicked as the door beside her began to open, and - without anything obvious to hide behind, her usual confrontation solution - held Slesh up to her face to protect herself, getting ready to sever the strings in case it wasn't the Neake. "What did you do to the temple?!" she said loudly, assuming the body opening the door was responsible.

Jack paused, the door open enough so that he could see the small girl, he was holding it open until his strength gave out and the door slammed heavily sending Jack back into the kitchen, hitting the cupboards and making a small dent in the wall. A muffled string of swear words came from behind the door before it was kicked fully open. The young man standing with an unimpressed look on his face as he straightened himself up and addressed the other figure. "This was not my doing, in fact I'm not sure why it happened really.. probably the big stone spiders.." He started mumbling to himself a little before remembering that he had a point "I believe you may be Obskeree? If so The.. uh.. Neake? yeah Neake asked me to come and get you" He gave a friendly smile.

Obskeree slowly peeked out from behind Slesh, frowning. "Where is he? Where's Mr Neake? And where's the temple? Who are you?" she squeaked, unable to decide which question was more important.

Jack panted a little, wiggling his foot a little, it hurt a little, the reality did not seem as thin as in Iwaku here, against all logic, but then maybe that was the point. Jack gave a somewhat nervous smile, before giving a small salute of a wave "I'm Jack, a lot of people call me Porg, pick whichever ya want." He rubbed the back of his head, aware of how ludicrous the whole situation was "As for where The Neake is.. Well he's in Iwaku, which is kinda where I come from, though not really, but kinda. The rest of his temple is there too, and uh.. the rest of my house too."

She bit her lip. "That's, um… okay." She dropped Slesh and he bounced on the strings by her feet as she glided smoothly over to Jack. "In that case it's nice to meet you," she greeted, still quite nervous. And then she realised - "So he's not in the Grey Space anymore?" A small, wicked smile appeared on her little blue face. "Oh boy, Baujanaz and Annjia are going to be pissed. That's fantastic!"

Jack smiled a little bit "Yeah, he's having tea in what's left of my kitchen currently I believe.." He looked around slightly distractedly, realising where Gary's room was and holding a finger up to her "Just a second, got to get something" He began to scrabble upwards and over the half ceiling, finding himself in a messy slice of room, several skeletons on coat hangers sitting limply in the valley of the floor and wall. Clambering over the skeletons and reaching down he pulled out a pillow "Ah ha! excellent!" he exclaimed, holding it up in triumph before slipping on the unstable floor of skeletons and dropping back down into the kitchen with a loud bang.

She raised an eyebrow with an intrigued smile as she watched. "Would you like any help looting your house, Mr Jack?"

Jack got himself back up, dusting himself off and placing the pillow next to the mugs. "Uhm, yeah actually could you uh.. " Jack appeared to notice her small size for the first time "Uhm actually.. I'll be fine, uh.. miss Obskeree, just gotta get me some of my clothes, I'm not.. so presentable right now.." He motioned down to the muddied cargo pants and the burnt leather jacket.

Obskeree shrugged, unworried by scruffy his attire. "Neither am I," she said, gesturing to herself. There was nothing wrong with her clothes by human standards, but fairies were quite strict with their regulations on appearance. "I'd get lynched for this otherwise. Which is a shame 'cause I think it's quite pretty." She twirled, Slesh dancing with her, and then stopped abruptly with a pleased sigh. "So Mr Neake asked you to come get me! I knew he liked me really." Another pause in her speech and she hovered closer to him, looking at the pile in the corner. "Is any of that yours?"

Jack glanced around, looking at the pile of stuff that had fallen out of the temple "That stuff? no, that'd be the Neake's uhm.. my room, or.. part of it anyway, is this way." He said this as he turned and jumped an inhuman jump up tot he slice of his room. My clothes should be somewhere under all these.. unexplained glowy orbs.." He mused, poking around in the pile of soul traps.

"That's some of his souls," she explained, offhandedly, continuing to spin while looking up, enjoying the dizzying feeling. She followed up 'upstairs' and observed his ambling. "He'll be annoyed they aren't in order any more," she realised aloud. "Do you think I should bring them to him, Sleshy?" She tapped the bar attached to her waist and made the puppet nod. " I thought so too. Excuse me, Mr Jack!" she chirped, before closing her eyes for a moment and the orbs around Jack's feet suddenly sprang to life and circled her.

Jack raised an eyebrow, impressed by the show "That's interesting" he voiced aloud, watching the orbs circle through the grey air as he gathered up his clothes absent mindedly "He may be annoyed that they aren't in order but, well I've lost a slice of my bedroom, this is basically every bit of clothing I own!" He held up the big bundle of clothes, with a slight grin on his face "I think it's pretty funny really" He said as he climbed gently down to the kitchen and placed the clothes next to the mugs, pondering how to carry it all.

Obskeree smiled, pleased he could see the funny side. "It is hilarious, " she agreed. "All of it. Also, are you sure you don't want help with that? I'll help." The mugs floated up and gathered around her small figure. "Now. Where are we going, Mr Jack?"

Jack grinned, "To Iwaku, though I warn you, it's kinda.. lasery at this point, but don't worry, I'll look after you. Least I could do, since you're carrying my teacups" He smiled as he held his hand out, the black portal rising from the ground. He gathered up the pillow and clothes and motioned for the girl to enter the portal.

"Hurray!" Obskeree cheered, happily following. "Don't worry about the cups. I'm -" she stopped abruptly, and appeared paralysed with something akin to horror. It took a moment for Jack to notice, but she had actually fully stopped moving.

"The day we find a human here," a small voice piped up from somewhere behind him.

"It's a day we didn't think we'd come to," another, similar voice finished.

Jack turned slowly, feeling a little ridiculous holding all his clothes "Well can't say I expected to be here either. Who's curious?"

Two small children, twins, stood before him, dressed in old-fashioned rags, with dirty skin, eastern faces and black hair tied back in long plaits. They were identical, and it was difficult to determine their gender.

"We are," they uttered unanimously.

Jack observed the two, finding them more than a little creepy and slightly worried by their sudden proximity. "Wait.. I think I was told to ignore you two.." He said with a smile as he crouched down so his face was roughly level with theirs. "I'm curious though.. why would I need to ignore you? Any ideas Obskeree?"

"She can't respond right now," one told him with a cheeky smile. "We wanted a word with you privately."

"How long it takes is up to your answers," the other added, stepped closer. "Who are you and what are you doing here?"

Stepping back a little bit Jack turned away from the twins to look at the fairy "O-Obskeree?" Jack gently poked the little fairy, who was frozen in place in midair. The touch caused a strange tinkling sound, like you'd expect from fragile glass. "What have you done to her!?" Jack snarled, turning back to the children, anger lacing his words.

"She's fine," one, suddenly to his left, assured. "It's just to make sure she doesn't interrupt."

The one closer to him, still in front, folded his - or possibly her - arms. "We asked you questions."

Jack looked to the one in front of him, glancing momentarily at the one to his left, the look was distrusting and hateful, but he wasn't stupid, so he complied to their questions. "My name is Jack, I came here to get my stuff" he raised the collection of clothes to show they were the said 'stuff' "I'm also here to pick her up.. So if you'd unfreeze her I'll just be on my way!" a patronizing smile punctuated the words.

"Will you ever be returning here?" the one to his left quiried, wandering to Obskeree and tapping her leg gently for the sound.

"Don't touch her!" Jack snarled, worried for the girl, concerned by the fragile noise and quite shaken by the apparent power of these children. "I doubt it.. but there's an outside chance I may have forgotten something or have to bring some people back." Jack moved towards the child near Obskeree ready to force them away from her if they wouldn't back off themselves. "There a problem? What are you anyway? I'm a realm hopper and this is the first damned anyone's seemed to care.."

"We are the enforcers of His Will," the one near Obskeree replied simply. "You are in our domain and are therefore our concern."

"Its nothing to worry about," the other added somewhat jovially. "We just want to make sure you aren't meaning to disrupt anything here... beyond, of course, disposing of The Neake - for which we are actually quite grateful, if it was your doing."

Jack cocked an eyebrow, looking to the one which had spoken last, but making sure he was aware of what the other was doing. "The Neake? I haven't disposed of him, I like The Neake in fact, he's my friend!"

With a rather patronising smirk, the twin shrugged with indifference. "Either way... we are willing to stand aside and let you pass if you can prove to us you are not intending on interfering in this world."

"And if you can't prove it, we'll have to alert the true owner of this place, and she will not be happy~" the other teased, tapping Obskeree once more - just to show him that he couldn't stop them.

"I said don't touch her!!" Jack growled, grabbing the child by the arm she'd used to tap the fairy with. "I have no reason to interfere, but I'll damn well come and go as I wish and if I want that part of my house back" He pointed to the slice of house floating in space "Then I'll damn well take it back" he snarled, getting more and more frustrated by their lack of reaction.

A look of terrifying rage entered the eyes of the child and Jack was thrown back, held in mid air by an invisible force.

"You dare!" they shouted together, approaching, their voices merging into one. "You dare touch the avatar of a god! You were warned of the consequences of not cooperating, Jack."

Just as the Grey Space began to darken, the twins paused in their descent upon him. A woman appeared behind them, tall and beautiful, with long flowing hair, vibrant clothing and a deadly looking spear.

"Leave him, Juukilik," she said, her voice echoing. "You've got your own problems. This is my realm - go and deal with your Heralds, that angel is causing a stir down with the mortals." With a huff, the twins vanished, and the power holding Obskeree and Jack faded. The woman regarded him sternly. "Jack," she said, turning away. "I feel I should be angry - your world's unstable nature has cost me my greatest prize. And yet..." She turned back to him, frowning, and spoke in a curt, irritated voice, "I find myself exhausted by the farce of his imprisonment. Never return here. I'll send your house back after you."

"W-wait.. that might not be the best idea.. I dunno what would happen, plus I don't think you could send it back now.." Jack looked to Obskeree, apparently intact and now moving and sighed "Thanks though.. I think you may have just saved me." Jack looked back around to the still open corridor of darkness. "Obskeree I think we uhm.. need to go" he said a little nervously.

Obskeree was distracted by the splendour of the new avatar. "Lady Annjia," she whispered, curtsying faintly. Annjia didn't respond, and kept her eyes on Jack. She reached out with a slender finger and pushed his forehead gently. It rippled, and was still.

"You will never return here, and likewise you will never allow anyone back here through your corridor," she stated firmly. "Now go."

"Wait - that means I can never come home...?" Obskeree wondered.

"Leave forever or stay, it matters not to me," Annjia casually told her. "Either way, make a decision now. I'm tired of dealing with all these discrepancies."

It didn't take a lot of thought on Obskeree's part to nod, decisively, and sit on Jack's shoulder. "Then lets go, Mr Jack."

"Y-yeah.." Jack said, seeming a little distracted by what had happened as he walked through the corridor of darkness.
Obskeree glanced around the Corridor of Darkness and gulped. She'd never seen anything like it before - travelling between the realms in her own dimension was a brief, unexciting manoeuvre but this… Whatever method Jack was using was rather terrifying for her. The Grey Space was bad enough.

She flew up and sat on his shoulder, shivering.

"Don't like the way this place feels, Mr Jack," she muttered into his ear. "Neither does Slesh." Though Jack couldn't see it, she lifted her puppet up and made him nod in agreement to her statement. "It's all… dark and…" She shivered again and settled for just hugging Slesh tightly.

Jack smiled a little, trying to reassure her. "Sorry, we're almost there, just try to concentrate on something happy and you'll be fine." He said, walking through the swirling darkness, finding himself struggling to take his own advice. This dark magic could leech your soul if you let it and Jack was dangerously close to letting it.

Suddenly there was a light and they stepped out into a cold landscape, snow covering the craggy ground. They stood on the side of a mountain, the flat quite large and connecting to a huge gothic castle. There was a little wind and Jack pulled his jacket up to his shoulders, though he didn't zip it up.

"You ok? it's pretty cold here.." he said , genuine concern in his voice. I uh.. probably have something in here.. you could sit in a pocket?" He gave her a slightly nervous grin, a little worried she might be a bit sensitive about the size thing..

Unbothered by the suggestion, she nodded, shivering for an entirely different reason. Her bright clothes were definitely not suited for cold climates at all. "That would be nice! Thank you Mr Jack!" She flew down to inspect said pocket and sighed. "Don't think I'm small enough, though." She opened it up and put her bag and puppet inside. "You can keep those safe though. I don't think Slesh likes being cold either."

She turned around and looked up at the big castle. "That's looks scary. Why are we here?"

Jack patted his pocket as though to say her things were safe and gave a small grin. Looking up at the towering castle "Unfortunately we have to pass through this world to get back to Iwaku, and we have to get to the other side of that castle to do that." He gestured to the castle as he walked towards a huge ruined stone bridge.

"It's fine, piece of cake really, just shout if you see anything and I'll keep ya safe" he said, trying to give yet another reassuring smile, never quite sure if the effect was working. The snow crunched underfoot as he made his way forward, the snow soon giving way to the stone, ice covering some of it and making the surface a little more treacherous than Jack would have liked.

"So uh, Obskeree… tell me about yourself, it'll make the trek a whole lot more interesting"

She nodded. "Sure, okay. I'm a Fairy, obviously. Um… I'm uh…" She scratched her head, wondering what to say. "I'm the Puppetmaster - used to be the royal Court Jester too in the kingdom before they threw me out." She crossed over in front of him to float merrily along by his left side instead. "What else would you like to know?"

"Jesters.. I like jesters.." Jack said, a little dreamily as she mentioned that "used to draw a lot of jesters.." he added quietly. He snapped out a little at the question looking at the fairy out of the corner of his eye.

"Uhm.. I dunno really, I guess I don't really know that much about your world, so half of what you say probably won't mean a whole lot to me…" He looked to the sky, a dark brooding night time sky, rather foreboding Jack though "Uhm.. what do you do when you aren't visiting the Neake? I mean presumably you do something?"

"Hide from authorities," she answered honestly, curiously innocently. "See, I'm an exile, I'm not really meant to be in the kingdom but… I don't really have anywhere else to go. I can't stay with Mr Neake because the Grey Space does weird things to the magic I'm made of. It… neutralizes me. So…" She flew a little ahead and faced him, moving backward. "So I just hop about in the kingdom. I don't really have much else to do other than look after my puppets."

Jack found himself at a bit of a loss for words, not really quite sure what to say to her. "Uhm, yeah…" he hazarded, realising how stupid that was before continuing. "Well there's a lot to do in Iwaku! and noone's gonna be hunting you I'm sure!" he said, trying a grin.

"Sounds like you've had a bit of a run though.. you think you'll go back? I'll be happy to take y-" Jack dropped the speech to rush forwards, his arm curling round the fairy as a flaming dog skull crashed into it. Jack flinched and stumbled forwards a bit, his leather Jacket smouldering where the projectile had made contact.

Obskeree screamed in shock and hid under the bridge, leaving Jack to fend for himself. Unlike their masters, the Angels, Fairies were under no obligation to aid humans.

Jack noticed the fairy's movements and sighed a little sigh in relief, dropping the bundle of clothes he was holding he rolled to the side, letting one of the flaming projectiles hit the floor where he had sat, bursting into a small smouldering explosion. As he pulled himself to his feet another two of the creatures jumped down from the towering castle, growling menacingly before firing their own skull heads at the young man.

Obskeree poked her head up over the edge of the bridge and observed the battle thoughtfully, her only real concern the state of her belongings in the boy's pocket.

Jack leant back and rolled in the air, grabbing one of the skulls from it's trajectory as the other wizzed by. As Jack span in the air he released the flaming skull he held, launching it out and into one of the hellish creatures, knocking the creature into a patch of ice where it skidded off the edge of the great stone bridge. Landing in a crouched position Jack propelled himself forward, towards the beasts, a flame appearing in his palm before being thrust forward, a fireball shooting out and hitting the left dog. The creature appeared not to notice and pounced at the charging Jack.

"Oh right, fire demons.. of cour-gah!" Jack managed to mutter before the hellhound battered into him, knocking him backwards and to the floor. The warrior managed to get a foot int the creature's stomach however, and rolled backwards, launching the monster over the edge of the bridge, a little way above Obskeree and into the abyss below.

While Obskeree had been considering helping, she was rather impressed at the human's ability to deal with the flaming demons and saw no need to interfere. Instead, she flew up, feeling a little safer knowing his capabilities, and sat on the edge, watching from a relaxed position.

Jack noticed the fairy's new position as he finished his backwards roll and ended up on his feet. "Comfortable?" he quipped with a smile, which soon gave way to a slightly panicked expression as yet another skull flew past his face. "Bloody dogs!" he shouted as he ran at the now charging creature, delivering a swift kick to the beast's ribcage and punting it over the edge of the bridge. "Damn demons.." he commented as he brushed himself down, noticing the stil smouldering patch on his arm and batting at it hurriedly.

Obskeree clapped. "That was really good, Mr Jack! You sure know how to kill things well~" she chirped, hovering over to him. She waved a hand over his arm and it glowed blue before returning to the way it was before the fire hit it. "But, um, what were those things?"

Jack gave an impressed smile as his burnt jacket repaired under the fairy's spell. "Thanks.. that's impressive, my healing spells only work on living things, I like that" He gave her another smile before looking over to the heap of clothes sat on the cold stones. "As for those things.. I think they are called 'Cerberus' if they are what I think they are they are hellhounds of some sort, or 'demon dogs'. On my way through here I thought I recognised to area. Though I wasn't attacked, they must like you."

She huffed. "Fantastic," she uttered, batting his arms out the way to retrieve her bag and puppet. "Do you think there will be more? Not that it matters if there are..." With a cheeky smile she looked him in the eye. "You'll protect me, won't you, Mr Jack?"

Jack gave a grin to the small girl "Of course I'll protect you, I said I would after all!" he returned, picking up his clothes and continuing down the bridge towards the castle. "Unfortunately I think there will be more, and some of them may be quite nasty. Don't worry though, I wont let you get hurt!" He gave a slightly proud smile as he walked on, he felt useful again here, a contrast to how he felt back in Iwaku.

The two moved on in silence for a while, and Obskeree whistled to herself as they approached the doors. "This castle really is huge. Looks almost like the High Court of Angels... only black. And creepy. And not fluffy."

Jack gave the fairy a curious look "Angels where you come from are fluffy?" He enquired as he pushed open a huge pair of oak doors. "I'm used to the, well, slightly insane type myself." He said, looking up at the ceiling of the stone corridor they now stood in, "Your angels sound a bit nicer than ours in all honesty" he added, not quite paying attention as he walked down the corridor.

She laughed, a light, twinkling sound and shook her head. "No, some of ours are crazy, but on our side of The Wall everything is made out of cloud. That's what I meant. They themselves aren't fluffy. More shiny."

"Ah right, my bad" He chuckled a bit. The corridor was thus far uninteresting, a few tall candlesticks adorned the hallway but nothing else of interest was to be seen so far. "Our angels seem to range from grimy to just plain weird to completely over the top." He took a sudden left turn "It's this way," he mentioned as he did so "Heh, I must look like such an idiot walking around this castle with all these clothes! Like I'm doing some sort of medieval laundry run."

Once more she laughed. "That's all right," she said. "Idiots don't get nearly enough credit for the duties they do." There was something pointed about her words that suggested a deeper meaning behind them, but she didn't elaborate. Instead, she shrugged. "Anyway. I'd like to hear more about your angels. I miss my angels' back home. After I lost mine I..." There was a loud crashing noise echoing down the corridor, cutting her off. "W-What was that?"

Jack stepped forward protectively, "I dunno, but watch out" he said, moving down the corridor slowly, still holding his clothes, apparently unaware he was holding them. He rounded a corner and was confronted with the sight of three hulking demons. They were slightly lizard like in appearance, but their heads and backs appeared to be covered in a thick layer of ice, their right arm sporting a huge ice shield and their left foot long claws, also seemingly made of ice. "Be very quiet Obskeree" Jack whispered as he peered round the corner "We don't want these things to see-" Jack then peered round a little too much, accidentally knocking over one the the huge candlesticks "-us" he finished as the crashing sound resounded through the stone corridors and hallways.

Obskeree squealed, realising those things would be coming towards them, and flew up to hide in the rafters of the corridor, keeping very silent.

"Goddamnit!" Jack yelled, as the creatures leapt towards him, shields aimed like swords. The boy leant back, opening his arms and letting the clothes scatter. One arm flung back to cushion the fall as the other grabbed the leg of a pair of jeans. Jack rolled to the side and twirled the trousers around, flicking them out so the leg wrapped around one of the demon's arms. Using this to pull the creature towards him Jack delivered a powerful kick to it's head, ice shattering and splintering with the impact. Throwing the hunched creature away into another he stepped back, taking a defensive stance, both hands alight with balls of flame.

From her high vantage point, Obskeree had a clear view to the two other demons racing down the corridor towards Jack. "Two more comin' your way, Mr Jack~" she called.

"H-huh!?!" Jack managed to say before two long red lances shot out at him, one pierced the ice demon, causing it to roar in pain, while narrowly missing Jack's neck, the other shot through the boy's shoulder, producing a stifled whimper. As the lances retracted Jack stumbled back, grabbing at the hole in his shoulder and swearing. A green glow came from his hand, but the creatures were advancing. The three frosts were lurching down the corridor, apparently unaware of their injuries while the floating creatures drifted silently into the walls.

Obskeree sneaked close to Jack. "You're bleeding," she whispered. "That looks sore~"

Jack grunted a bit and winced in pain. "Just a flesh wound" he growled, pulling his now bloodstained hand away and calling up another fireball. His breathing was a bit heavier than it perhaps should have been and as the air touched his wound he winced. "Look out!" he shouted, pushing the small girl away suddenly as he fell forwards, the two red lances shooting from the walls and narrowly missing the pair. As Jack hit the floor one of the frosts slammed it's shield downwards into him, though the boy managed to plant the fire ball upwards into it the blow still made contact as the shield shattered, showering him in sharps shards of ice.

Concerned at his loss of control on the situation, Obskeree frowned and back up around the corner again to collect her thoughts. Fighting wasn't her strong point - she knew this - but perhaps she could help him out. Without Jack, she was well aware she would never be able to defend herself against the beasts.

A sinister jingling began, louder and louder.

The jingling concerning him slightly Jack grunted with the effort of kicking upwards with both feet, hitting one of the Frosts in the chin and shattering the ice around it's head. It fell backwards into the other two peppering them both with exploding ice. Jack pushed himself to standing just in time to see one of the other creatures come through the wall, it's finger glowing as it circled the young man. As it raised it's hand to strike Jack span and flung a fireball at it, causing it to flinch and recoil back into the wall. Panting slightly he stopped, aware of something moving in his pocket.

Suddenly, the lights went out on the candles around them, plunging them into darkness save for the glow of the fingers. Obskeree stiffled her giggles, enjoying her stunts as ever - it had been a while since she had had a chance to perform. Her puppet climbed out of Jack's pocket and grew. Twice its size, then three times its size - and kept growing until it was standing as tall as Jack. It turned around, its happy smile menacing as the demons, and then quickly seemed to launch itself at them, weighing them down against the floor, wrapping its jingling hands around them and pinning them there. The struggled, and it didn't look as though it would hold them for long.

Obskeree's giggle rang through the hall, and she appeared from around the corner. "These demons," she exclaimed, "May as well be Imps!" And with that, she cast her hands out towards the scuffle, pulling her puppet off them seemingly with her mind alone, and sending the beasts flying back.

Hurrying, she flew to Jack and placed her hands on his gaping shoulder wound, a familiar, pale blue light appearing. "They'll be back in a second. Hang on just one moment, though..."

Jack smiled at the girl in the dark, the glow instantly making him feel better. "So that'd be Slesh then?" he said nodding towards the now human sized puppet. He drew in a long breath and pulled himself up a bit more. "Guess I should get a little serious.. or you wanna take this one? Can Slesh take them?"

She pulled a face. "I take it you didn't enjoy my show?" she wondered, finishing her work. His wound, and clothes around the wound, were good as new. "I can't kill them. But I can distract one if you don't think you can take 'em all at once."

Jack cracked his knuckles and rolled his healed shoulder. "I'm always happy to accept help, but if it's getting too much don't worry about getting out of here. Your safety is paramount here!" Jack said as he turned to look down the corridor to where the demons where, he could hear them recovering and coming towards him. "Oh and I did enjoy your act, I like a bit of a show!" he grinned at her "Wanna see me do one?" He said a ball of flame flared up in his raised hand.

"Ooh," Obskeree grinned, "The floor is yours, Mr Jack. Just let me rescue Slesh..." She clapped twice and it appeared before her, regularly sized. She snatched it from the air and backed off to reattach its strings.

"Hope you enjoy the show miss!" Jack said with a grin as he about faced, ducking a swipe of claws and palming the ball of flame into the back of the assaulting frost. There was a small fiery explosion and the creature fell to the floor, the ice on it melting as it faded into nothing. The whole corridor was lit in that split second and Jack could see the other four creatures, all advancing. Ducking another shield thrust and sidestepping a claw swipe he brought his foot up and then down, slamming one of the Frosts into the ground and propelling himself upwards, where he pulled back his fist before slamming it down into the head of one of the mephistos' faces.

The monster slammed into the fallen Frost, the beast's icy back spikes thrusting up through the shade and impaling it as it shattered into dust. Landing back on the frost with a stomp, finishing it off Jack lit up another ball of flame so Obskeree could see him "enjoying the show?"

Obskeree shrugged. "It's all right~ For an amateur~"

"Amateur!?" Jack gave a slight grin "Oh I'll have to try harder then obviously!" The final Frost thrust forward, to which Jack backflipped, landing on it's back and turning, his outstretched hand grabbing the startled Mephistos by the head and twirling back round, throwing it back down into the Frost. Grinning the boy lit up the room as a great blast of flame erupted from his hand, the Mephistos and the Frost both exploding into dust with the attack.

Jack landed back on the floor standing, smiling at the fairy. "Impressed yet?" he said as he raised a finger and lit a candle to his right.

Suddenly not seeming the chipper young thing, she commented in all seriousness, "Sloppy presentation and simple in content. You'll need to practice and try harder to impress me." There was a pause wherein she regarded him sternly for a moment longer, and then a playful smile lit up her face once more. "Still, let's move on if we can~ How many more monsters do you think there will be?"

Jack cocked an eyebrow, cracking a smile "Heh well to be fair the corridor is a bit cramped and I like to build up a little. You wont see anything really impressive for a little while" He walked over and picked up the clothes, smiling at her a bit more "guess we should get moving ey?" He began walking down the corridor "Unfortunately I think there may be quite a few monsters.. don't worry though, no sweat!"

She grinned tightly but said nothing, propelling herself forward to perch on his shoulder. As long as no one protested, she was always willing to do as little as possible.

Jack didn't say much else, finding himself worried that he'd insulted the fairy. The corridor soon opened out into a dining room, the table set out lavishly with silver cutlery and gold candelabras. The room held many rich wooden cabinets and dressers, and looked recently used. There were some fancy suits of armour standing by the walls. Jack seemed distracted and just made his way into the room.

The display of wealth on show in the room made Obskeree initially uneasy. It reminded her of her days in the Royal Palace - and they were never good days. She remained seated silently, stuffing Slesh inside her bag and clutching it tightly with her small hands. "Mr Jack," she uttered, "Whose house is this?"

Jack didn't stop walking, and appeared to contemplate the answer. "Uhm.. some religious organisation owns it.. damned if I can remember their name though. Don't worry they aren't here right now, and if this is when I think it is, then they should be all dead." He glanced about a little bit, apparently expecting something to happen, but it appeared nothing was going to.

Obskeree flew over and landed on the table, inspecting the cutlery with great interest. "So they wouldn't mind if I took some stuff, then, huh...?"

Jack gave her a wary look but didn't protest "I guess, do what you want, but you'd better remember all my cups." Jack took a second to look at one of the suits of armour, eyeing it warily. "You have monsters and knights in your world? Just curious.." He said, turning his head slightly so he could see her out of the corner of his eye.

"Well, we have demons and imps -" she began, picking up a fork that came up to her waist and swinging it about merrily like a spear, "And we have the Royal Guard, who are kinda like Knights... most of what I know comes from books on the mortal realms, though..."

"Hmm curious.. A lot of our world actually are from the books. Strange place Iwaku." Jack was still looking round when he sensed a movement by him. Staring at the armour he backed away slightly as it's helmet turned to face him. "Shit! get down!" Jack cried as he dived to the side, clothes scattering as the two suits thrust their lances across the room.

Obskeree ducked down under the table immediately, still ahold of the fork. "Ah! I really don't like this place! Kill them, Mr Jack!"

Snarling Jack rolled to his feet, a chain being unclipped from his belt and swung at the closest angelo. "I'm getting damned sick of this now!" He yelled as the chain coiled round the creature's lance, tugging it towards him. Grabbing the weapon he wrenched it from the figure's grip and flung it across the room. The lance embedded itself through a wall as the second armour jumped forwards and struck at Jack. Hopping out of the way he flicked a fireball at it, but it had little visible effect.

"Ugh.. I always hated how hard these things were to kill!" Jack grunted as he kicked one in the head. "You ok down there!?" he shouted out, bouncing over to the other one and kicking downwards into it's helmet. Both creatures stumbled back but appeared mostly unaffected.

Obskeree, meanwhile, had been getting herself comfortable under the table.

"Fine, Mr Jack. Just fine. You get 'em good, now!" she called, a little too cheerily.

"You certainly seem s-" One of the angelos punched Jack across the room at this point, the boy shattering a dresser as he hit it. Apparently satisfied with this the armours slowly turned to look at the table Obskeree was under, one drawing the lance from the floor, the other raising it's pointed shield as they advanced.

Obskeree regarded this turn of events with mild panic. She tried to rummage around in her bag for Slesh, but found that they moved quicker than she could hunt. Darn her bag for being so full - Slesh's strings had become tangled in something. Abandoning that idea promptly, she fled from her spot as the table was overturned by the lance. Luckily, improvising had always been one of her strong points. She looked around the room for some inspiration.

Channelling some ancient fey magic, she reached out with her mind to the surroundings - a feat more difficult than she would admit, given she was simultaneously trying to avoid the attentions of the two angelos. "Where's an angel when you need one," she uttered, lifting the table up and firing it straight at the angelo near Jack, pinning it against the wall tightly. While it struggled, she saw through the gaps in its shell and had a brainwave.

The armour was hollow. That meant it was probably light enough to...

She lifted it off the ground and smiled, thanking her lucky stars she was blue - any other faction and she wouldn't be blessed with such a useful power as telekinesis. Her joy was short-lived, as the one behind the table broke free. It seemed it was time for a show. It had been a while since she had exercised her illusions, but now was as good a time as any. With a little concentration after dodging a swipe with the lance, she managed to conjour the solid image of Jack, prancing wildly between the two angelos. While they turned to it, she hurried to the real Jack to help him up.

Jack was already on his knee, panting a little "Jeez those things have a good right hook!" he snarled as he pushed himself to his feet. "Nice trick you got there, did I see you lift one of them up?" he commented, dusting himself down as the beasts chased the images. One appeared to notice him though and launched it's lance in their direction. Jack gently palmed Obskeree out of the way as he leaned back, the Lance spearing the wall by his head.

"Oooh big mistake!" he grinned back at the emotionless creature, before pulling the lance back out of the wall and throwing it back. The weapon collided with the angelo, the monster being impaled and launched backwards, the spear on the opposite wall also spearing it. It continued to move but appeared to be stuck. "Shot~" Jack commented with a smile looking to the fairy for validation of the feat.

Unfortunately, the fairy seemed rather upset that her concentration had been broken and her imaginary dancing Jack was dispersed. She focused on the other angelo, still a threat, and flew up to hide behind Jack, ready to provide supoprt as and when she saw the need to.

The other creature's wings opened up and a fire roared beneath them, the creature shaking a little on the spot before launching towards the two. Uware of the fairy behind him Jack couldn't dodge, and so he tried grabbing the lance, the thing spearing into his shoulder a small way and drawing blood, bu the creature's advance was halted for a second. Jack's strength gave way however, and let out a cry of pain a the lance tore at his shoulder as the angelo rocketed past him.

With a loud squeal of panic, Obskeree scrambled through the air to get away, but it caught her leg slightly and she plummetted to the floor. She couldn't die there, could she? A world not her own, speared by soulless beasts with a human of all things by her side - no, she would not die here. Swallowing her fear and pain, she leapt between the armour and inside the hollow creature, and rooted herself firmly inside its helmet. Channelling all her power - what was left of it - she took a deep breath and took control of the angelo. It was now her puppet.

She found the body lumbering and awkwardly big, but managed to swing around the lance to kosh the other angelo around the face.

"Advice, Mr Jack?" she shouted, her voice ringing around the shell, "How do these things die?"

"Motherf-" Jack stopped his words as the fairy spoke, clutching his bleeding shoulder and pushing himself up, wincing. "Uhm.. I think you just beat the crap outta them.. they take enough damage and whatever it is holding them together just fails I guess." A green glow shone from beneath his hand and when he removed it his wound had stopped bleeding, though it was still open and very painful to look at.

"Can you keep that one like that for long?" he asked, rolling his uninjured shoulder dramatically, winding up for a punch.

Obskeree winced at the throbbing pain in her leg. "I think so. It's just lumps of metal... There isn't a lot of psychic resistance."

"Excellent" Jack said, before punching the one pinned to the wall square in the helmet. The metal crumpled under the split-second's force and the part of the angelo not held by the lances simply clattered to the floor. "Shall we continue?" Jack said, wiping a small trickle of blood from the corner of his mouth.

Obskeree sighed inside the suit. "I feel this one dying. I think I'm hurting whatever is possessing them."

Jack frowned a little. "I didn't know they could feel pain.. guess I never thought about it.." He rubbed at his shoulder absentmindedly and took a few steps towards the far end of the room. "Any ideas?"

As the angelo lived its last few moments, Obskeree dropped down and climbed out of the ankle of the armour, walking across the floor to Jack. She stood up to the middle of his shin, slumped over slightly and wincing a lot as she tenderly peered at her left thigh. "Everything feels pain, silly," she noted, "Like me right now. Ow."

Jack gave a concerned look and crouched down, "you ok? sorry, I messed up.. you weren't supposed to get hit.. uh.." he said, a little panicked, his voice thick with concern.

She shrugged. "I'll be just fine, stop your worrying. I need a magic source to heal myself up..." She floated up to him and sat on his shoulder. "I guess until then you'll have to carry me!" she uttered with a high pitched giggle.

Jack gave a slightly nervous grin, looking to the fairy out the corner of his eye. "Define 'source of magic'" he said, as he exited the room, surprisingly nonchalant considering the residents of the great mansion.

"Anything that doesn't come from me," she explained, as if telling the information to a child who ought to know it already, "I am made of magic - but I can't just reproduce it from nowhere. Its like you regrowing a limb. I need external magic to assimilate to sort this out."

"So uh.. this then?" Jack said, a small flame sprouting from the end of his finger, which was held up for the fairy to observe.

She shook her head. "No... that doesn't feel right. I don't think your magic will work."

"Damn.." Jack replied, letting the flame die and looking a little dejected. "Well uh.. shall we.. move on then? Maybe healing magic would work?" he hazarded.

"I'm really fine, Mr Jack. You look much worse off than me."

"Yeah.. but, I'm me.. so I don't count." Jack said with a slightly nervous smile, as he walked out of the door "Besides I'm supposed to be bringing you back safe"

At that, Obskeree fell quiet. She didn't reply, purely because she didn't know what to say. It had been a long time since her wellbeing was cared about to such a degree as this human - which she couldn't understand as she had only met him that day.

Jack waited for a response, but when none came he smiled a little, turning another corner in the over ornate corridor. The place held a few tables and Jack stopped a second to look at some flowers in a vase. "So.. healing magic? Think it'll work?"

She nodded after jumping off his shoulder to inspect the flowers. "I suppose. I don't see why it couldn't. Do you have some?"

Jack held up a palm a soft green glow emanating from it. "Yeah, though, it's not very strong.."

Obskeree waved her hand into the glow and shook her head. "No, that isn't strong enough. Thank you, though."

Jack sighed a little, looking at his hand before shaking it and shoving it into a pocket "Ah, sorry" he said quietly, moving from the corridor into another room. Before Obskeree could follow through the arch however a large wooden wall slid down heavily. "w-what!?" she could hear Jack's muffled cry from the other side of the new wall when there was a loud sound, the kind you might expect to hear as a sword was drawn from it's sheathe, and five sharp glowing red spikes speared through the wall at stomach height, each dripping with blood.

Obskeree's face paled and she was frozen in shock for a few moments before using a psychic blast to force the blades back so she could open the door-come-wall. It was difficult, especially given her dwindling energy, but thanks to sheer adrenaline she managed it.

She opened the door just in time to see Jack slump to the floor, laying almost motionless as the Faust glid over him towards her, it's hand held up the end of it's pointed finger tips glinting with the fresh blood of the boy.

With nimble fingers she dug her puppet out of her back and untangled the strings as she floated, unstabily, up to meet the Faust's head.

"You'd hurt this child for no reason? I don't care what world this is, you are a demon. And I'm going to show you why they called me the Puppetmaster." With a flourish of her wrist, Slesh flew up and began to bulge and grow as before, but it didn't stop at Jack's height. It kept growing, larger and larger, as the jingling of his hands and feet chimed together into one ominous drone. Obskeree clutched the wooden control bar and held it up, controlling the giant puppet with the magic in the strings. "Take this!" she cried, and in an explosion of movement she swung him around and bashed the side of the Faust with all four bells, batting his cloak and hitting the creature beneath it. She continued this assault, from one way and the next and thanks to the force of the blows the Faust had no time to recover in between them. She maneuvered Slesh's arms around the bulk of the Faust and, while they were tightly embraced, slammed them both around the room. The spinning hurricane of Faust, Slesh and string continued for a moment until suddenly the adrenaline gave out.

Out of breath, she dropped Slesh's control bar and collapsed to the ground. Without her concentration, the puppet shrank back to its original size.

The Faust collapsed too, but quickly was floating again, gliding silently over the small puppet and towards the exhausted fairy.

Obskeree saw the creature approaching, but was just too tired to do anything else. She didn't want to die, not without seeing The Neake again - not without finding her angel...

The creature's fingers entended with the familiar unsheathing sound one shooting straight towards the fairy's neck. About an inch away everything seemed to slow, and here was a brief second where there was a sound like shattering glass. It pierced Obskeree's ears and rang through the castle.

She covered her eyes.

There was a second where the air felt like treacle, and the monster's fingers sharded and shattered, falling away from the fairy. Jack stood, his soulblade outstretched, having cut through the Faust's glowing weapons. He was panting heavily, and his midriff was bleeding, but as he glared at the creature, even it felt fear, before he ran it through.

Obskeree blinked up at him in awe. She honestly hadn't been expecting such a show of power from the mortal creature - her mortal saviour. There was more to Jack than she had thought.

She clapped, appreciatively. "Excellent," she commended. "I've not seen magic like that before."

Jack panted as he tured, his soulblade dissipating. "Y-yeah it's a soulblade.. not very common... Y-you ok Obsker-" He stumbled forwards, though he manged to catch himself and remain on his feet. He clutched his belly a little as he winced in pain.

With a sad sigh, she shrugged. "We need to get out of here. Where is this door you're looking for?"

Coughing some blood up against the wall Jack pulled himself upright "This way," he said through a quiet grunt.

Sparing a glance for the young man, Obskeree considered her options for helping him. She could use some magic and try to heal him, and in doing so severely cripple herself, or she could move on and wait for him to feel better. She opted for the second one.

Jack stumbled a bit as he moved on, using the wall to keep himself upright. "It's just a room or two on I think" He said, hazarding a smile to the fairy. They came out onto a wall, surrounding a courtyard. "Yeah just across here and down the steps over the other side" he grunted, motioning to the end of the wall path.

"I'll scout ahead~" she said, sounded a tad breathy as she walked along the grass. She couldn't fly. She was exhausted.

"D-don't get yourself in danger" he called after her. Taking a deep breath and forcing himself to stand without the small wall for support. He stumbled forward a bit and took a look down into the courtyard, and gulped a bit. Down there were Demons crawling out of a huge gate. "O-ok we might wanna go a bit faster" he said, wincing as he picked up the pace.

She threw a glance along his sightline and agreed. "Yeah..." After wandering a little further into a gloomy patch, Obskeree spotted the door he had been searching for. "There!" she squealed, excited.

"Excellent! Nice work" Jack said, as he pushed himself to go faster, limping and wincing now, He glanced back as the Demons began to come over the side of the wall, grinning hungrily. The corridor of Darkness was on an outcrop beneath a huge waterfall and above a massive chasm. "Go go go!"

Obskeree dove through.

Jack turned and gave the demons the finger as he stumbled backwards through the corridor of darkness closing it behind him.

---> Continued in Porg's Meadow, a while ago >>
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