Legend of Renalta 2: Reborn

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  1. "Aww but I could have such fun with you in shackles and chains, don't you agree?" -Mikan, Page 1.

    Imperium - Anima Aeternum

    Raen stares at the mercenary duo and growls lowly, his draconic heritage showing as he shakes his head. "You're all fools who will die dishonourable deaths! BELIEVE IT!" He says without a hint of irony or sarcasm as he runs full speed down another path, both of his katana pulled out in an incredible inept fashion as katana are not duel wield weapons of any sort. He dashes down a hall to a dead end and a loud scream is heard emanating from that path. It was obviously the wrong path. Florence then shrugs as he follows along with the mercenaries. "He should have listened to his grandmother and searched for traps." Trom looks up at Florence with confusion. "What?" Florence chuckles. "An old reference, from another time."
    Aslo's smoke bombs strike the ceiling and disperse into a mist that quickly fills the room. One Skuva falls to the floor, hitting the ground and snapping its neck from the fall. There were sounds of other chitters, and some skittering, though nothing else. Above him as he tried to set the door up, he could hear some skittering through the ceiling, as could the others as the Skuva sped their way to the next room, likely to remain on the ceiling and try to ambush them like their unsuccessful, impatient member attempted to. As Aslo turns away from the door, he hears it fall to the floor again. It seemed that the damage the minotaur had done to it would refuse to allow it to stand again.

    Florence's eyes scan the ceiling, he had little reaction to everything going on around him. These were motions he had practiced so many times that it was almost child's play to him, despite Trom and Nyla obviously being worried. "Predatorial, pack animals, think akin to wolves. Though they can seem more intelligent if there is a force directing them." Nyla looks back towards the entrance. "Like those voices. Like magic." Florence nods and even cracks a small smile. "Correct." Nyla's face brightens up as she grips her gladius tighter. Florence, finally, looks ahead and focuses on the situation. He narrows his eyes. "Tables? That can't be right..."

    From what they could see in the hall, the next room was humongous. It likely had large pillars holding up the structure and unlike elsewhere, it seemed well maintained. It was likely a good drilling room for unit-based formations and archery practice, yet, the tables made for no logical purpose. The ceilings were also even higher than those in the previous room, implying that the ceiling was somewhere at the bottom of the Blood Sea floor. Nyla shudders. "I don't like the looks of this." Trom shakes his head. "Shush, we don't have time to worry. Just follow your orders." Florence looks between them and decides not to add anything, instead finally offering tactical advice to the group. "Since your half-blood nitwit had a mental breakdown, my advice is simple." He draws a sharp breath and sheathes his gladius, pulling out one of the two pilum (throwing spear) on his back. "Do not group too closely. A tight formation will likely be abused by some of the more advanced Scuva who are liable to spit acid or other such compounds at us. Do not spread more than a few feet apart. Two close combat, one ranged per group of two to three. If a group is under attack, do not blindly run to help them, watch for incoming ambushes and intercept those instead. Use the tables, walls, and pillars to remove an angle of attack for the Scuva..." He glares at the tables again. "...And assume we're being toyed with. They wouldn't set up cover like that for us and then simply forget to take it down when they saw us here."

    Rheinfeld - Scheideweg
    ((Collaborative: Tempest (Taigyn) & Brovo (Alida).))​

    Laenaia, Zin, and Draza enter the main tent as Taigyn and Alida sit down across from each other and a large table. There, a large map of Rheinfeld and its surrounding, unenforced land claims were present. Notable, there were even a few within the borders of Renalta, though they seemed of no interest to either the Republicans or the Templar. Taigyn quietly clears his throat and points at the map, tapping his finger on Heiligen Stuhl. "There are large walls which will require siege engines to take down. We however don't have access to the resources to produce them en masse soon enough to end this war quickly. Thus, in the interests of cooper--" He is interrupted as Alida brushes his hand aside and glares at him eye to eye. "No, lets not debate strategy until we've agreed on the end goal of this war, which is the real issue."

    Taigyn settles back into his chair, relief flashing over his face for a moment to have a break from the military banter. "Very well, let us talk of this matter. To what end does the Republic fight for?"

    "Well." Alida says as she leans back as well, crossing her arms over her plated chest. Around the tent were four torches lit to grant illumination inside, hung on wooden support pillars away from the cloth edges. One of the torches illuminated the cracked, ebony skin across her face, and the firery look in her eyes. One that would likely remind him of someone else he knew, back in Renalta. "Republic. A government ruled by those that the commons wish to be ruled by, with the military serving its proper rule as protectors and public servants, not as rulers." She rolls her fingers across the table, slowly, repeatedly. "Like the Imperium, like Renalta. A kingdom for the people."

    Taigyn runs his gloved hand back through his hair, his brow knitting and deepening the well of scars pouring from beneath his eyepatch as he looks at her sadly. "Something I wish as well... But the established military of Rheinfeld is birthed of noblemen, privileged men who would not so willingly forsake their claims. For now, we fight together, their outrage calls for the downfall of the ones who fed them on lies and called for the needless slaughter of their countrymen since the founding of our order... That has demanded the blood of our brothers and sisters for any transgression of their supposed word of God." He shakes his head. "But they are still comfortable with their lot in life and, try as I might to break them of it, you see it even with my second the way they treat their inferior. I fear defects the moment they feel this war is over. The dream of the Republic will not be easy to realize."

    A look of confusion visible spreads over Alida's face. Since the start of the war, there had been little contact between them. This was perhaps the first real attempt at striking a peace accord in the entire conflict. "You... Are much more reasonable than I had anticipated." The drumming of her fingers on the table intensifies for a moment before subsiding to a resting position, though the fiery look in her eyes remained ever burning with idealism. "A woman with blue hair and her lover restored a fantasy kingdom that cherishes its lower orders against the Gods themselves, including our own Father and Mother." Notable, she still spoke of them with reverence, even though she also showed great respect towards those who stood against them. "If a small group of people, including you as I recall, could stand off against the very Gods themselves, surely, with the might of millions, we could achieve anything. Even a Republic. Even if that Republic would cost us in blood."

    "And it might mean fighting against the very ones we had fought alongside just months before if we do not take steps to try and ease this idea into the minds of the noble class before instituting it. I do not know about you, Alida, but I grow weary of spilling the blood of those I call countrymen already in this civil war. I would hope to prevent from prolonging this brutality if it were in my power." He closes his eye and takes a deep breath, cracking his knuckles in thought.

    "Yet how can we trust that if the autocrats were given power that they would not simply solidify that power rather than relinquish it?" The ex-Templar says with a sympathetic glare. A strange expression, to be sure. "How can we be certain that there won't be another papacy in power?"

    "We can't," Taigyn chuckles and leans forward, "We can't trust that this Republic will run as smoothly as we hope it will either. It's a hope that it will work perfectly for the people, but corruption is a funny thing that runs in the hearts of people, though we try to deny it. I would like to back you in the formation of this Republic, Alida. I truly would, it is a cause as noble as the one I followed a Princess to Cradle to see reality. I am just speaking of what may come should I throw my full support behind you without acclimating the upperclass. I do not wish for a new Papacy to rise any more than you do."

    Bringing her hand up to her forehead and rubbing it in frustration, Alida stares down at the table. "And so we come full circle... Because I cannot budge from my position and you will not budge from yours." With that said, her hand slowly drops back down onto the table. "You supported the queen in her dream, why not the dreams of your own people?"

    Taigyn clenches his jaw before taking a deep breath, "I want time. Give this peace treaty a chance. Cease fire between our ranks. Give us your support. We'll give you ours. Get your men through our training programs. Let them see that a crusader. A Templar. Is not just about pedigree. Break down the barriers of class between the military, so that your military can pave the way to your Republic."

    Shaking her head, she slams her hand on the table and looks at the trio of Queen's Blades. "Right... Any suggestions for our predicament?"

    Meanwhile, Moira looks at Kasim and smiles a little, looking at his charming grin seemed to ease the tension in her shoulders as they continue to follow Davian. They climb to the top of a grassy hill, where the barn was located. The hill itself was fairly steep, almost surprisingly so, not a great place to settle a barn, that was for sure. Moira looks around and notices a few Republican soldiers running to catch up to Davian, narrowing her eyes. "That's not something you see every day." She murmurs as Davian nodded to them, and entered the barn with his weapons unsheathed.

    It was at that point that Moira stumbled for a moment and reached for her forehead. Rubbing it gently, a sudden gust of wind emanates from the barn and blows them both back a step, Kasim moreso than Moira found that he had nearly been blown off of his feet. "Magic." Moira growls lowly as she looks up to the barn again just in time to notice a Republican soldier being flung past them to what was likely his painful death at the bottom of the hill. It seemed he had been less fortunate than they had been. "A witch? Here?" Moira states with great confusion. She momentarily looks back to Kasim with uncertainty, then bolts up the hill towards the barn where Davian was likely facing whatever creature was there... Alone.

    Liveria - Heaven's Haven

    Elrbetrt dashes around the boulder only to hear the shuffling of two pairs of feet moving towards her. One attacks her from in front and she easily manages to block its throwing dagger, from the sounds of its footsteps it was a little larger than she was, akin enough to the orc champion for her to discern that it must have been an orc of some kind. The smell of a second approaching from the flank gave it away despite its attempts to hide its attack, and she ends up locked in a duel with it as her weapon locks against the creature's jagged, uneven blade. It growls at her, its tone distinctively masculine and yet weaker to that of its larger cousins.

    She could hear the first, small orc, unsheathing another throwing knife. It would be impossible to hold that position, and the only reason she survived was seemingly the pure whimsy of fate and destiny.

    Meanwhile, Rayvon's charge was met with the ruthless axe of the orcish champion, ending her life. Or, it would have, were it not for the fact that his limbs were slowed, and his attention was drawn between two potential targets. The shining light of the paladin armour showed clearly her weapon burying itself into the orc's flesh at his waist, rending through the chain mail as though it were a mere nuisance and tearing open his gullet in a single, clean swing. Blood sprays out immediately as his intestines roll down to his thighs, and with a single groan of protest, he falls over onto his side, dead. Rayvon, coated in blood no less, had slain the giant, and her life had been saved by a now exhausted looking Mila.

    Gabriel complies with the command to fall back, and with one burst of his wings, pushes himself backwards with great force away from the orc he was engaged with. Blood seeped from his open wound as he cradled it with his shield bearing arm. A droplet of blood falls from him and lands on Andrea's cheek as the cloudy skies slowly began to open up with rain. Gabriel looks up to the skies and smiles a little as Ceann's arrow passes by him, yet, he heard two arrows shot...

    Ceann's arrow strikes true despite the rain starting, whistling through the air it hits the orc that Gabriel had been engaged with. The arrowhead buries its way into the skin past the armour, and then explodes, presenting an alarmingly effective weapon as the orc's ribcage is blown outward, along with burned chunklets of his flesh, internal organs, and tissue. One of the ribs lands beside Ceann, steaming, but not burned, as his corpse falls off the cliff's edge and onto the ground below with a ground shaking thud.

    Still. The first orc archer had managed to get a shot off in the mess, and with a shriek of terror, the possessed orc ran past Rayvon to the motionless corpse of Mila, who had been impaled to the ground by the oversized projectile. Mila is dead, and for those magically inclined, the possessed orc's identity was clear: Princess Helénē.

    The rain continued to fall as a bit of silence came to the battlefield at the shriek of horror. Even the two half-orcs engaging Elrbetrt hesitated, as the shriek sounded like one of their own, yet, didn't. The possessed orc began to cry over the corpse as the leader's voice rang out into the valley with its familiar, thunderous volume. "ENOUGH!" He glares at Gabriel as he approaches the edge of the cliff, with Elrithos managing to climb to the top. "You are strong. Could kill us. We could kill some of you, but you would kill us." The first archer orc seemed to growl in protest, though was silenced as he was suddenly shoved into a wall with magical force from the leader. "Let us talk."

    Free Holds - Devil's Children

    There wasn't much to say of the situation while they changed clothes and got ready. Mikan answered their questions quickly and concisely before they moved out. Aëyr received her answer first: "Aëyr, that's a good question. We'll head back here. Should this place be crawling with guards, then find your way to the nearest mage's guild outpost and get home, and don't worry about me." Mars' question came next, to which Mikan offered only a small, vague smile. "I might be able to arrange that. We'll see how they feel."

    Quietly, Fahim met them at the entrance of the Inn. As the sun slowly began to set, he led them to the Keep. It towered over them, a four floor tall structure that dwarfed the other buildings, one could more accurately describe it as a small palace, complete with slaves, fountains, slaves, gold, and of course, slaves. The doors were tall and wide, large enough to accompany two elephants standing side by side, it took slaves simply to open and close them. As Fahim reached the entrance with Mikan, he looks at the guards and smiles. "Ah, hello." Mikan was wearing thick, brown robes, while Fahim wore the typical, aristocratic garb. Well, "wore" it, in his own, shapeshifting kind of manner. The guards look between each other, then glance at the group. "Dancer group, obviously. Who is the cloaked one?" Fahim smiles viciously. "My surprise." The guards roll their eyes. "We'll need to see the face of your surprise." Mikan giggles as she pulls her hood back. The description of Mikan that was whispered about in the lands was one with pale skin and green hair, with equally green eyes. Mikan, however, had tanned skin, freckles, a pair of blue eyes, and black hair like that of a crow. A night and day difference, though she had arrived in town with the tanned skin, obviously.

    With a wink, she presses the rest of her brown robes tightly to her body. Partially to show off her curves, and partially to show that there were no obtrusive, large weapons hidden underneath. The guard chuckle and motions them on inside as Mikan flips her hood back up. One of the guards even looks at Aëyr with a bit of familiarity. "I remember you. Not a lot of your kind got to be hookers." Fahim glares at him. "She ran away, I captured her, she's mine now. If you want a night with her, you'll have to wait until after this is over." The guard raises both of his hands as Fahim intimidated him. "Alright, alright! I didn't mean nothin' by it!"

    Inside, they were greeted with a humongous room, decorated in brilliant golds, sapphires, and rubies. Enough wealth to outright feed the entirety of Renalta's population for at least five years was sitting in this one room. At the center of the room was a large area with decorative tiles, likely where dancers and other competitions would go down, judging by the fact that there was a blood stain being cleaned from the floor at that very moment by a magician with a mop and bucket. People of all different shapes and sizes were around them, from Tulerian lizardmen to even a couple of Renaltan nobles, though they didn't appear to have slaves with them, only guards. One such noble nods to Fahim as he enters, and Fahim nods back. It seemed that there were Renaltans involved in this operation.

    Up several golden steps was a throne made out of, auspiciously enough, simple, fine quality wood. Sitting upon it was a man with deep red eyes and short, blonde hair. He was unnervingly attractive. It was very likely a power of his: Should any of them get too close to him alone, he could easily subvert them to his overpowering will. Mikan shudders and looks back to the others, whispering to them. "I've felt this... Before. The... Demon associates I mentioned... Have a very similar aura about them. Though this one seems... More... Magical, less... Less a product of... Whatever it is, demons do. I can resist it. The rest of you should be careful not to get too close." Sympathetically she looks at Aëyr, knowing that throwing weapons were not easy to use at a moderate range in a thick crowd. Closing to a guaranteed kill range however might also prevent her from even using her weapons due to the aura. It was a risk she would have to decide on her own.

    Looking about the room, Fahim looks to the Queen's Blades and smiles. "The dancing won't begin until they finish selling the best of the slaves. Those deemed beautiful or deadly enough to warrant being wheeled out in cages. It is my guess that there is only three of them left, perhaps four." He glances about the crowds, and motions about the room. To everyone else, it would appear exactly as it looked: A master telling his slaves what to do. "Our dancer here is going to be paired with you, Tivan." He looks at Mars with a charismatic smile, he was already making up identities for them. "Aëyr, feel free to mingle and try to pick up some rumours for me. The closer you are the richer nobles, the better." What he meant by that was anyone's guess, though he likely meant to take her time for now. They would most certainly be on alert now, moreso than with the dance. "And you, my dear... You know what to do, Cynthia." Fahim says with an air of elitism in the tone of his voice as he looked at Abida. "When the dance begins, you can either try to help draw attention to our two dancers here, stop others from sabotaging our dancers' performances, or sabotage the performances of others."

    Fahim then straightens the collar of his aristocratic vest. "Oh, and whatever you do Aëyr, please... Don't find your other associates. And, remember, I do have money on me obviously, but only enough to purchase... One slave, this time. So if you feel that you want to add to our little repertoire, make sure to keep it... A choice, selection. Yes?"

    Amazons - The Greatest Hunt
    ((Go read the OOC.))​

    The Queen's Blades quickly sniffed out the succubi in the ranks of the Amazons. Esyllt had been stabbed when she went back to the amazon who was impossible to read telepathically. She then promptly went after the princess and failed as Fafnir pinned her down and tore her throat out in a single, violent stroke. Esyllt was quickly healed by Unamo, a young shaman who had been taking interest in the necromancer's arts prior to the violent interruption.
    Ethlinn then led the Queen's Blades, and Alexandria, out into the jungle, out of the village. Taking with them all the supplies they would request or need, Unamo stuck along to observe Naream and his magical arts, while Tasha and Rashan joined them, impressed at Fafnir's display to the crowd. After traveling for about two hours, they stop in a small clearing where it was obvious that a great assault had taken place: There were several jungle trees that had been taken down, along with a few blood stains, but strangely, no corpses. A few necklaces were scattered across the ground, and they were most certainly amazonian. The princess of the amazons told everyone to wait momentarily as she looked at the scene with utter dismay. Alexandria, on the other hand, agreed for entirely different reasons as she sniffed the air. Though there were many unfamiliar scents, there was one she was all too familiar with: Lycanthrope. There was at least one in the area, and he or she was likely stalking them to try and pick off a straggler.

    With that said, Tasha and Rashan both took guard positions in the clearing, keeping a lookout for any potential threats while Unamo began drawing shapes into the dirt of the jungle floor. "I'll find them." Unamo says as she hums to herself. There wasn't much to do now except try to get their bearings, investigate the area for clues, look into the lycanthrope threat, and perhaps ask some questions of the surrounding amazons. After all, while they didn't seem to respect their princess, they had gained some level of respect for the Queen's Blades, and might do as they ask.
    #1 Brovo, Oct 17, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2014
  2. Imperium-Doctor Gremlock
    The next few moments were little more than a blur to the unseasoned Goblin. Apparently, the half dragon had decided to run off into a hallway and, predictably enough, get himself killed. Thank goodness he had not followed his advice. Then he got in front of Gryff as planned and started loading his musket, but after a signal from Aslo, he got behind the meatshield and headed into the hallway. One smoke bomb later, and the Scuva weren't a threat anymore...in theory.

    Somehow though, Gremlock found himself at the front of the group. Definitely not the first place he wanted to be, he'd rather be behind the meatshields. Speaking of them though, it seemed they had more intelligence than he thought, at least when it came to battlefield strategy. In hindsight, he supposed that it should have been rather obvious, they were experienced mercenaries after all, they had done this kinda thing before. Gremlock, for one, had a lot to learn.

    Soon enough, he took the opportunity to finish reloading his musket, when he heard Florence issuing orders. They seemed reasonable enough, so Gremlock added some more to his words "That sounds pretty reasonable. I plan to head left, and I'd like for Gryff and Trom to accompany me. Murderok, Aslo, and Nyla can head off to the right, while Florence...well I trust you to make the best decision on which group to follow. Way I see it, each group will have one strong person, one archer, and at least one human. If nobody has any objections, let head onwards then."

    After waiting for any objections, Gremlock finished loading his rifle, and went to the door. He took his top hat off, then placed it at the end of the musket, then waved it at the entrance to the room, making sure the coast was...clear. To be fair, he didn't know if this was an actual tactic, but he had read a book of somebody doing this once. When nothing happened he slowly made his way into the room, heading left cautiously. He didn't want to get caught off guard by anything, more Scuva, sentient furniture, or killer chains hanging around on the ceiling or floor, so he made sure to check his surroundings, using fire magic to light his way if needed. In the end, he kept his musket, and attached bayonet, ready for anything that might choose to attack them.
  3. The Greatest Hunt - Essylt Boudica

    As soon as the devil-woman had stabbed her, Esyllt was tended to. If it weren't for her blooded cloth and stiff muscles around where she had been wounded, it might as well have been an illusion. Nonetheless, they had taken out the succubus... Even if they had failed to take it captive alive... Something that made Esyllt uneasy, causing her gaze to avoid Fafnir and it's mechanic Maeven... Esyllt's chance to learn more about demonkind had been taken from her as violently as the mechanical dragon had taken the succubus' throat. After her last conversation with Maeven, Esyllt had hoped she would be able to speak on the topic of demons without ignorance, but she was still at square one...

    Even so, Esyllt was not entirely brought down. She had proven to be a valuable asset this mission, and could raise her head a little higher as she walked amongst the Queen's Blades. She had barely had time to change, as Ethlinn lead them further into the jungle. Their travel through the heat took it's toll, as more sweat stood on Esyllt's brow than she had ever experienced before. Despite struggling to keep up with the amazons, Esyllt didn't want this time to go to waste. She still knew very little about the members of their company. If they'd be up against a drake later, that wouldn't do. She hastened her pace to catch up with Alicia.

    “I witnessed your duel,” Esyllt brought up with a polite smile, but heavy breathing. “The Blades are lucky to have a capable fighter such as yourself. Where did you learn to fight so well, if I may ask?”

    When the party arrived at what had seemingly only recently been either a slaughter or a battlefield, Esyllt's muscles stifled. The sudden burst of stress made the cramp near where she'd been stabbed all the more noticeable, and the young knight flinched as her expression turned sour. Not put at ease by a disturbing lack of corpses, Esyllt exchanged a look with Naraem... Perhaps the more experienced necromancer of the two could make something out of this? Esyllt did not know. What she did know, however, was that it would be time for her to summon her shield and armour. Even if Unamo was near, Esyllt felt little for a second stabbing.

    “If there s a lycanthrope on the prowl...” Esyllt murmured telepathically. Although Esyllt knew little of werewolves, after her encounter with the succubus, she had learned to reveal as little information as possible to the enemy... Including suspicions.

    Esyllt, not fit for detective-duty, instead grabbed dirt from the ground and rolled it into a tiny ball with arms. She then poked a hole into it, and put a tiny soulstone, holding the essence of little more than a rat, into the dirtball. They were her first homemade stones, which she had been able to craft with the help of Naraem. Although they held but little power, it was enough for the purpose Esyllt intended...

    “Naraem, if I may so kindly request, do you have any spare eyes in your laboratories? I have a way of seeing from a distance.”
    #3 Kestrel, Oct 17, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2014
  4. Rheinfeld - Scheideweg; Draza
    Small and deft; sneaky but pure and innocent in demeanour

    Also, soothing aura!

    Draza’s gaze curiously went to the map, a piece she had to climb to get any such good view of, and found a wry grin on her face as she looked at the claims that were present. Particular note of interest for her, were the claims extending beyond the borders of what was the Rheinfeld proper. Claims marked into Renalta. That was, to say the least, not something that struck Draza as a particularly good omen. That was not something that either side should be truly even humouring with their current state of affairs.

    "Great..." Draza said rather low and quiet, shaking her head as the finger of Taigyn snaps to place a finger upon the map not far from her. She pulled back and made sure to not interrupt the exchange that followed. If nothing else, it was rather refreshing to hear the opposing sides speak without venom coating each utterance. The disagreement remained despite this.

    Bringing her hand up to her forehead and rubbing it in frustration, Alida stares down at the table. "And so we come full circle... Because I cannot budge from my position and you will not budge from yours." With that said, her hand slowly drops back down onto the table. "You supported the queen in her dream, why not the dreams of your own people?"

    Taigyn clenches his jaw before taking a deep breath, "I want time. Give this peace treaty a chance. Cease fire between our ranks. Give us your support. We'll give you ours. Get your men through our training programs. Let them see that a crusader. A Templar. Is not just about pedigree. Break down the barriers of class between the military, so that your military can pave the way to your Republic."

    Shaking her head, she slams her hand on the table and looks at the trio of Queen's Blades. "Right... Any suggestions for our predicament?"

    ”If I may be so bold to speak at this, I do have words I may add,” Draza spoke as she made sure she wasn’t to interrupt the speaking of another. ”The word of today, is accountability. The problem with the Papacy was that it was not accountable to the people, neither noble nor commoner. It grew fat, lazy, and corrupt. And also that evil stuff, that wasn’t good either,” she said, before sighing, ”And ultimately the Templar, and, nay, most people here are familiar with one way of battling corruption, least before it rots from the head out. It’s diligence! The constant watchfulness, the dedication to the betterment of the people. Or, at the very least what they think is better. We’re not here to discuss that.”

    ”But if government is a garden, diligence such as that is just picking the weeds. There’s more to gardening than picking weeds. There’s watering, and pruning, replacing the soil, singing to the pl--” she cut herself off at that, before defensively adding, ”well it helps, but besides those there’s one thing more important, and perhaps most important, planting new plants to replace old dead ones,” she punctuated, ”And if we are going to replace the rotten bramble that was the Papacy, we need one that’s watched inside and out with the same diligence that was once pointed solely outward, one not too powerful to become a the rotting bramble, and one that is accountable to the people. Accountability to not just the Republican people and officials, but the Templar and their people below as well.”

    ”Both sides rightfully fear a new rise of a Papacy; a new pure chalice tainted in dark blood. And both sides at least have those that fear the other will become that. Ultimately, a compromise is about all that can satisfy this without peace, but such an utterance will be hard fought and struggled over for its wording. This is where Templar Taigyn has good head upon his shoulders,” she gestured to the Templar leader with a hand, ”The largest obstacle to Republic is the Templar not understanding, or not believing, that they’re just people of one station, and the Republicans are people of another. A failure of understanding that is a dangerous one to remain, and a treacherous one to attempt to uproot. But, perhaps, showing them that people aren’t too different from them, and that we’re all part of a... well, not too glorious feeling now, but a truly glorious Rheinfeld? That will be key. There is glory in Rheinfeld beyond the holy orders. The sword and shield of good can be held by commoner and noble alike, and a nation is more protected when they all wield it.”

    Draza turned to Alida, ”So I beseech you, to make concessions. Republics do not grow to prosper in the shadow of evil, nor are they watered in the blood of the innocent. There is still bramble to uproot. We’re growing a new plant with the Rheinfeld Republic, we cannot simply take an existing tree,” she makes a small gesture to Taigyn, ”and thrust it in the ground. Republicanism will rise, but it must be nurtured. And you, sir Templar,” she turned to Taigyn, ”I thank you for your understanding. It is a blessing and a half to hear you speak of your hope. I can only have faith that your words over it are as good as you are, Templar Taigyn. But while your wish of the fighting to end, may be unrealistic so long as the people still have hope, and faith in themselves, unless you believe the Templar would personally break the spirits and hearts of everyone they would rule, until they are not people but slave. In such a case, I tremble to think for what a state that would be. Although, I fear we may be familiar with it already.”
  5. Elrbetrt Westfeld
    Liveria - Heaven's Haven

    Her heart was pounding again as she rounded the corner, an attack coming so swiftly she almost forgot to block the blow. Another one of those things, but the smell of another was very apparent. Turning swiftly, she managed to avoid a flanking attack by another growling orc, locking blades with it in the process.

    Of course, they'd try use their advantage in numbers. Her mind worked frantically as she tried to think ahead of the opponent as her teacher taught her to. Elrbetrt could already hear another throwing knife being unsheathed from the direction of the other orc.

    Thinking quickly she broke off with the thing in front of her, retreating backwards swiftly towards the cover of what she thinks is a boulder. That position would surely deny the other orc from throwing another knife straight at her, forcing it to come in front of her should it wish to kill her, though the other orc which she just disengaged from would still be able to see her clearly.

    Inhaling sharply, she braced herself for another attack from the orcs, and to riposte as soon as the orcs shows an opening.

    How did the knights in the stories handle this sort of fights regularly?
  6. Amazons - The Greatest Hunt - Naream Baenre

    He thought back on how they came to be here, the succubus had been discovered and dealt with, sadly they were not able to take the demon alive. He had such plans with a captured demon, so many experiments to perform. Ah well there would be other opportunities in the future, probably too many. Still the role played by Essylt in revealing the succubus could not be denied, she was clearly a great asset to the queens blades... and a good associate to have, yes he was satisfied with his decision to approach her and teach her necromancy, gaining the art of golemancy in return. That she had telepathic abilities was a reveal to him and he made a note to make sure to keep his thoughts guarded, though he was not sure that the human woman had the personality to invade a persons mind without invitation or being ordered to.

    He looked around at the surroundings, nature... so much life, almost anathema to him, being a practitioner of death magic. But without life, he would not be able to practice his art in the first place. And now there was a lycantrope, well other than the queen, nearby. Just marvelous.

    “Naraem, if I may so kindly request, do you have any spare eyes in your laboratories? I have a way of seeing from a distance.”

    He turned to regard Essylt as she asked that of him, his skeletal guards, not dismissed, patrolling the perimeter. "I am afraid I have no such... fresh... ingredients. But use the lessons of necromancy I have instructed you in." He gestured to some of his skeletons. "How can those undead still 'see'." He motioned one of his skeletons to approach and casually dismissed the magic keeping it together. It crumbled to the ground and he retrieved it's skull, handing it to Essylt. "Incorporate this in your creation and infuse it with partial necromantic energies, that should do the trick I believe."

    Esyllt took the skull from Naraem, as she put a tiny soulstone inside of it and sealed it with more mud covering the bone as camouflage and giving it tiny, spider-like limbs. “If we are being followed, our pursuer will try to approach us from behind, correct? I've trained myself to see through my creations. This one should have our back.”

    "A very good application of both your talent with golems and your new abilities with necromancy, I approve. Nicely done Essylt." Naream said with a smile, noting what she had done and thinking of ways to use it himself if possible.

    “Please,” Esyllt brushed aside the compliment, “It is but a small experiment.” She said, but a brief smile glimmered on her face. She hoped her experiment would be of help to the mission, and affirmed the value of her presence.

    After this brief conversation with Essylt he wandered to where the Amazon shaman was, who had earlier showed a interest in his skeletons, it intrigued him and he wanted to see if he could engage the woman in conversation. He observed her at first, she had stated she was going to weave a spell so he merely stood nearby and waited for her to notice him. And if she did notice him he was always interested in observing other spellcasters and learn, even if it was merely casual observation.
  7. Imperium; Murd and Gryff

    Listening to the scream from the unusually incapable exceptional imbecile Murd cocked his head. "Damn... reckon we could give whatever did that a medal of some sort..." The Minotaur shrugged. Gryff meanwhile just rolled his eyes as he paid more attention to Florence and Gremlock.

    "Sounds like a sound enough strategy lil'green. Let's do it." Gryff began studying the area as he held his weapons at the ready. There wasn't a lot they could do especially now one short, though it didn't take Gryff much to admit that was more losing a handicap.
  8. Rheinfeld - Zin

    Zin listened to the speakers in silence, letting Taigyn and Alida wind down and allowing Draza to have her say, taking it all in and considering it from various angles. She let Draza's final dire statement hold the floor for a few seconds before she leaned forward from where she stood, resting her hands tentatively on the edge of the table. "I think that a bit of drama can be helpful to illustrate points," she said with a brief smile for Draza, "but I think what we need here is pragmatism. Nobody wants to see the Papacy removed only for something just as bad or worse to replace it. That can be avoided with diligence and careful pruning, as Draza said, but a tree does not grow in a day. In fact, I would take it one set further. I would say that the tree is not symbolic of the system of governing you both want to put in place; it is the mutual trust and respect that you must grow between the two of you and your people. Only once that has grown can you shape it into something new, something that will support your people and keep them from falling back into the dirt and muck of tyranny. This republic you both wish for is much like a chair in that respect, to stretch the metaphor to its breaking point." Zin rapped a knuckle on the back of a nearby chair with a faint smile.

    "Anyway, back to the pragmatism bit. This impasse you're sitting at can only be solved with one thing: faith. Not the faith you put in gods, rather the simple, humble faith you put in people to do the right thing." Zin looked to Alida first. "Taigyn is not simply spewing empty excuses when he says that those of noble birth would balk at the idea of a republic and cause more fighting. I come from high birth myself, from a powerful merchant family in Liveria, and I saw their kind firsthand. They are not necessarily bad people, they simply have a very different view of the world. Just as it would be hard for you to come to accept that certain people are simply better than others because of their birth, it will be hard for those of noble birth to come to accept that this is not true. You need to give Taigyn time and your help to change their minds, because this change will never happen while the Templars and Republic remain at odds. It will certainly feel like you are giving more ground than Taigyn is to start with, and I will not lie to you and say that it isn't so, but you must make an investment in the future if you wish to see your dreams for Rheinfeld come true. You have to do the work of digging the hole and planting the seed for that tree, because it will never grow if the seed is not planted. You must have faith that Taigyn's desire to see this republic grow and bloom is just as earnest as yours."

    Zin then turned to Taigyn. "If Alida agrees to shoulder this burden for her people, and all of Rheinfeld in the long run, you of course mustn't balk at what needs to be done. No coddling the nobles for years and years until they finally come around to the idea. Start raising men of common birth into the higher ranks as soon as would be prudent to get them used to it. Start punishing nobles for transgressions with just as much harshness as is levied to commoners, no matter their rank. In short, start enforcing equality in all things. Yours is certainly the easier path of the two, but I do not doubt that it will still be a struggle. The sooner you start, the sooner the dead trees and brush can be cleared away to let the sunlight reach that little seed of hope. Have faith that Alida's desire to see best happen for Rheinfeld is to everyone's benefit, not just her own or her people's."

    She took a deep breath, giving each of the leaders a glance. "Now, I mentioned pragmatism before. Here's where it really comes into play. I would dearly love to see the Templars and the Republic join forces forever and walk toward a grand future hand in hand, but this is beneficial to the both of you even if you look at it wholly selfishly. The Papacy is a thorn in both of your sides, and getting rid of it is in everyone's best interest. The only way to do so is for you to work together. If it unfortunately turns out that one or both of you could not keep your faith in the cause of a new future for Rheinfeld, you'll both come out ahead in this arrangement. The Templars will no longer need to fight a war on two fronts; the Republic will no longer be at a massive disadvantage in training, discipline, and experience. If you work together now you will only improve your own position after the Papacy is dealt with, no matter how things go between the Templars and the Republic. Thus I would suggest, even if you cannot have faith in one another right now, that it would be best for you to set aside your issues and work together for a common cause. It is entirely likely that just the fact of your forces working together will be enough to build up any missing trust, and the nobility of the Templars seeing that the common men and women of the Republic do not lack for skill or courage may be enough to make them change their views on what is really important. Whether you look at it from a selfish or selfless point of view, the best option for both of you is to work together to defeat your common enemy, and let the future come however it may."

    Rheinfeld - Kasim

    This was the stuff of stories, no doubt about it. Kasim felt his heart already thumping up into an excited pace as the Republic soldier flew off to his death. Some magic user, or perhaps magical entity, had had the gall to come to a meeting involving the Templars of all people. Clearly it must be a very dangerous and probably very powerful person or thing to think that was a good idea. Slaying a powerful evil entity was something of an entry requirement for becoming a hero worth telling stories about, so Kasim was quite looking forward to putting an arrow through its heart, or other vital spots depending on what exactly the thing in the barn turned out to be. He wasn't very picky, really.

    The thing that clinched it was Moira's uncertain glance back at him. He could see it in her eyes: that boastful promise he'd made to protect her had been taken to heart. She wasn't exactly a damsel in distress, and perhaps she was one who was more likely to cause others distress than to experience it herself, but that wasn't all that important. She was a woman of some kind, and she was heading into danger. Kasim could not in good conscience allow her to rush into it alone; what sort of hero would he be if he allowed damsels to run off and get themselves killed by terrifying wind monsters from the depths of hell? As he ran to follow her into the barn, Kasim remembered that Davian was also in there, and maybe some surviving Republic soldiers. Rescuing them wouldn't have as much weight on the scales of heroism, but hey, a few extra points are better than no points. The run of the mill soldiers could be sacrificed for the greater good, but making sure Davian survived would probably be a good thing. Then again, he was more than a bit of a prick. As he crested the hill, pulling an arrow to be ready to shoot at whatever eldritch horror lurked within, Kasim resolved to play it by ear and see what felt the most legendary and heroic at the time. There was no need to commit to anything before actually checking out the situation, after all.
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  9. Many Years Prior
    Lightning cackled through the black sky and the gods roared in fury, the ocean threw itself violently as massive waves came crashing down without relent. Caught in the fury were two ships which danced around one another in a mad courtship of death. Arrows and gunshots were traded between the two, sailors were struck down and swept off the deck by the murderous waves which spilled over the railings. A flicker, an audible snap and a stream of fire launches itself from the fingertips of a mage towards the enemy, a few sailors are caught in the flood of fire and scream through the flames as their bodies crumpled to heaps of boiling flesh and ash. There is no refuge from the madness as finally the two mighty leviathans collide in a glorious wreck of splintered wood and blood, and through the night the crews of the two ships cleave at one another while the ocean swirls hungrily beneath thier feet.

    Manhunters from Tuleria, armed to the bone and eager for coin had hunted the pirate vessel tirelessly over the open ocean. They had come a breadth's width away from catching their prey in port, but the captain of the looters, old Elijah Morrison, had caught wind of the encroaching manhunters and set sail into the coming storm thinking no man was loon enough to give chase through the ship breaker, but the manhunters chased the pirates into the heart of fury. The two galleys tore at another in a grand visage of carnage and destruction until one gave way. The ocean rose to claim the defeated as men were dragged to the ocean's depths or ripped apart by the predators that awaited them. The victor limped away, nearly succumbing to the storm as well before they found themselves in the haven of tranquil waters with the wrath of the Ocean Gods behind them. The pirates had emerged victorious, but not without great cost. The dead were tallied and what bodies had not already been swept away were given to the ocean.

    Mars had been a deckhand during this and was the first time he had truly bore witness to the ferocity of his new life. An empty sheath straddled his side, the dagger which called it home had been buried through the back of some man hunter who took it with him to the bottom of the sea. Mars' eyes were distant and his voice shook with youthful fright as he wrestled the atrocities of what he saw against the notion that war was a step into manhood. He should rejoice that they were victorious and he lived to see it so, but as he bent over and wrapped his small adolescent fingers around the ankles of some corpse he saw his face on the body. When they threw the dead man over the ship Mar's watched him sink; he watched himself fall limp through calm water until he disappeared to the nothingness that lay below.

    Mar's was leaning against the rail, peering into the bottomless water long after what he had been watching vanished. A voice spoke to him and he turned to see Old Elijah join him by the railing, flask in hand as he took a small swig and offered it to Mar's with a hearty laugh.

    "Come on boy, drink!" he said pushing the flask into Mars' chest. Mars complied and inhaled the foul drink, Rum was a taste yet acquired. "Woah, woah slow down there lad."

    "I killed a man," Mars testified in anxiety as he handed the flask back.

    "I know, I heard. The first of many I hope."

    "I sunk a knife through his back, then I stabbed him again and again until he shut up."

    There was a moment of silence as the two stood side by side, watching the raging storm slowly shrink into the horizon. Elijah leaned forward and rested a forearm against the railing, and with the other grabbed Mar's by the back of the neck and squeezed firmly as he said, "You know lad, we're a murderous lot we are, but apart from the ones ill in the head most of us went through the same thing the first time we killed a man. The trick is not to linger on it and remember the first time is always the most difficult, but it gets easier each time after. Soon enough you'll be having fun... but if you think you can't handle it you can leave at next port."

    "I can handle it," Mars replied quickly, turning to meet the old man's eyes and shaking the hand off his neck.

    "Then pull yourself together lad and act like a man; the ocean swallows the meek."

    Elijah left Mars there to ponder his words, and Mar's stood in silence and a few more corpses were dropped into the ocean wearing only the clothes they died in, anything of worth was removed from their person. Mars watched as a sailor stood over one of the bodies, the corpse wrapped snugly in a death gown of linen and cloth, the man knelt over and removed from his jacket a wooden sculpture, small but ornately chiseled. The sailor lifted a layer of the cloth wrapping and placed the wooden token inside. He saw Mars watching the ordeal and explained to the boy ,"It was his. I hope in the next life it will remind him who he was." Then the man lifted the body and watched as his friend sunk serenely into an eternal peace.

    Mars ~ Free Holds

    Mars looked about the room with hungry eyes. Jewelry, gold and precious stones cluttered his vision in any direction he looked. His blood was swelling his veins and he could feel his heart crashing against his chest. He felt a strange sensation in his spine and giddy feeling nearly overwhelmed him at the sight of it all, "I wish there was enough strength in me to mug the lot of them," Mars whispered softly to the comrades at his side. It was torture being in this place with so much wealth only a fingertip away, he could feel his skin crawl as he resisted every impulse in his body to go wild, snatch something and run like hell. The aura from the man seated on his wooden throne was only further complicating things.

    I might be fighting for the wrong side.

    But then, a memory wormed into way into Mars' head. Curious he turned to Mikan and asked, "When I first joined the Queen's Blades back at Arian village I was among the group who disarmed the bomb hidden in the town square. A woman, a Blade, was killed by the explosion. I'm curious if after all this you could tell me where she was from."

    "Thailen of the house Vicarris, born in Renalta but emigrated to Liveria... Yes, I can tell you all about her home." Mikan replies somberly.

    #9 Atlas Child, Oct 24, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 24, 2014
  10. Imperium - Aslo

    The all too familliar scream of death piqued his ears. A most unfortunate, and yet easily foreseen end to their uneasy ally "Yes Murd, should we survive let's be sure to comission these beasts for a medal." Aslo shrugged the loss from his mind. With the sounds he was hearing just above them they were likely to find other things that required their focus.

    As they reached the next room Aslo cautiously gazed up into the seemingly endless abyss of the ceiling. A nervous shiver ran up his spine as he hoped the Scuva might not risk such a drop, but then he figured he probably would were he in their position. He listened as Florence and the goblin spoke of their plans seeing no obvious flaw, and having no better idea walked over to the right to wait for movement with his sword at the ready, poised to strike.
  11. Liveria - Heaven's Haven
    (A Andrea & Selvi Collab)
    The two Drow shared a glance, Ceann raising a eyebrow a second arrow already nocked on the string of her bow, receiving a slight shake of the head from the priestess she merely nodded and allowed herself to relax and loosen up. Calmly removing the arrow, she put it back in her quiver but did not make a move to place her bow away, keeping it in her hands as she kept her eyes on the Orc leader or shaman whatever his roll may be in the orc hierarchy. She did spare one more glance towards Andrea, "There is angel blood on your cheek." She stated as a mere bare fact.

    Andreas eyes widened slightly before she returned a more neutral look, retrieving a knife she cut of a piece of fabric of her dress and dabbed her cheek with it, letting the blood soak into the piece of cloth before she folded it up and tucked it in a pocket of her clothes. Her snakewhip was hissing it's eyes darting from orc to orc and she traced the back of her fingers over it's head, letting out a soft cooing sound to calm it as she surveyed the scene.

    There had indeed been some deaths looking at the latest three, the orc champion, one of the orc archers and the, what was her official role anyway, guardian of the princess? The Liverian princess seemed to be, water coming from the eyes meant weeping if she was correct, weeping over the corpse of Mila. Seeing nobody else stepping up the plate she stood tall and looked up at the Orc leader as she placed her whip back at the hook on her belt and crossed her arms. "Lets talk."

    Ceann upon hearing that nodded to Andrea and retreated away from the cliff-face, going to where the Fallen Mila lay. She looked emotionless at the corpse, placing her bow on the ground and began to work upon loosening the projectile that had killed the woman. Before any could protest or ask what she was doing she was unfastening the clasp of her cloak once she managed to pull the projectile out and toss it aside, with her cloak loose she took it and spread it over the corpse covering it. Looking up at the possessed Orc, "Some dignity at the end, especially for one who showed courage the entire path." She did not know if the possessed orc, Princess Helénē, heard her or even acknowledged, she did not bother to even wait for a reply, picking up her bow and returned to Andreas side, eyes once more on the orc leader to see where this next series of events would lead to.
  12. Rheinfeld - Laenaia
    Laenaia listened to the people in the tent as they made their speech. She thought the whole thing was too optimistic, but perhaps more optimism is what they need at the moment.

    "I have nothing to suggest," she shook her head. Nothing that wouldn't be taken now or would cause complication later on. She then looked at Taigyn. "Ah, I apologize to ask this right now, Templar Taigyn, but do you happen to know of an Eustice? He said he was your guard."​
  13. Aëyr
    Free Holds; Devil's Children.

    One slave.
    She tried to resist the thought, but the mere mention of her former sisters-in-slavery reminded her just how lucky she was to have escaped, and how wretched it would be if she were to be caught again. Try as she might to pretend that those years no longer bothered her, she was fully aware that they would likely hang over her for years to come, a curse upon her mental well-being.
    And to think that now, on a mission of national importance, she had the potential to risk hundreds if not thousands of lives down the line were she unable to contain the basic empathic desire to free those who still suffered as she once had.
    Fahim's warning was warranted, to be sure. Yet it was no less cruel.
    Releasing her breath, held equally in frustration and in worry, Aëyr composed herself. There was a lord to kill.
    Affecting the slightest smile, she gave Fahim a submissive curtsy before moving away from her fellow Blades. Quickly scanning the room, she decided that she would be best off on the other side of the room, but off to the side and a decent distance from Deimos. Edging her way through the crowd, careful to slip between the patrons as opposed to merely pushing her way through them, she positioned herself on the outskirts of a small group of supposedly high-class Free Holders—one that she hoped, from the familiar designs of their clothes—were not from Southblood itself.
    Idly gazing towards the throne without looking directly at the man seated upon, she gaged her distance. Far enough to not be affected by Deimos' aura, she hoped, but also not close enough for a good shot. If all went well, that would come later.
    For now, she had a role to play.
    Moving up to an amicable-looking man, she glanced at him with a light-hearted grin, before turning to look back at the center of the room, where the dances were to occur. "Is milord looking forward to the performance?"
  14. Abida Qisaf
    -Free Holds-

    As Fahim finished reminding them of the plan, Abida nodded her understanding and moved off across the room. The dance would not be starting for a few minutes at least, by her guess. The last few caged slaves must be haggled over and moved out of the way beforehand. So during the delay, she decided it would be prudent to keep an eye out for potential problems. Hidden guards, unnoticed exits, or even other assassins. A botched attempt would send Deimos scurrying to safety, ruining their own attempt in the process.

    And of course, the succubus. The demon could very well not be present, but if she was in the room, Abida hoped to spot her beneath any disguises she might be wearing, magical or mundane. She wasn't the primary target, by far, but what Mikan had said... She may be the source of the aura, Abida mused. Take care of her, and it may be easier for the Blades' to get close to Deimos without worrying about being forcefully subverted.
  15. Liveria - Elrithos


    Ascending onto the cliff had Elrithos heart racing, seeing both archers getting ready to fire off. Gabriel had disengaged by demand of the dark skinned elf. Knowing better than to look back to see what was happening, he continued forth, wishing that the archers would send one of those monstrous arrows upon him. Coming near the top, he heard an arrow from behind him racing past him and into one of the orcs… The tip seemed to explode and send chunks of the savage being everywhere, leaving the second one to shoot into the fray below. It was his chance to get up there.

    Right before he pulled himself up, he heard the shriek from below. Not one of pain… Of terror? Again, he could not look back into the fray below. The threat was right in front of him. He made it to the top just when the orc shouted to stop… Grabriel had landed not too far too. Weapons at hand, he kept them low as the orc who seemed to be the leader spoke. The beast of a humanoid spoke of humility and valued his life and those of others. It meant he was most certainly a reasonable being and so would probably easier to talk with than expected.

    The fight was over; the clear sign being the archer being thrown into a wall by what seemed mere will of the Orc leader. Elrithos straightened up as he slowly put the blades away, turning around to face down the cliff. The large orc champion had been gutted at the waist; the orc that had “joined” their side was by the corpse of one of the dead… The Advisor. Mila had been impaled by one of the large arrows. She was lifeless. He watched as one of the dark skinned elves spoke of them talking. It was probably for the best that one of them took care of the talking. The other made sure that the body of the fallen was covered and hidden…

    Elrithos turned to face the leader once more, taking one quick glance at the Celestial One. How would he react after this encounter? He now kept his attention on the leader, waiting for who would take the talk into something serious and making sure that the Orc wouldn’t try to pull a fast one of them.
  16. Amazons - The Greatest Hunt - Naream Baenre (part 2)​

    After this brief conversation with Essylt he wandered to where the Amazon shaman was, who had earlier showed a interest in his skeletons, it intrigued him and he wanted to see if he could engage the woman in conversation. He observed her at first, she had stated she was going to weave a spell so he merely stood nearby and waited for her to notice him. And if she did notice him he was always interested in observing other spellcasters and learn, even if it was merely casual observation.

    Unamo seemed focused on her spell, and yet as the necromancer approached she hesitated a moment, a small smile crossed her face as her eyes continued to focus on the drawing in the dirt. "Walker of the Dead comes to see the Speaker of the Dead, interesting." She reaches into a pouch at her waist and pulls out some strange dust, sprinkling it over the glyph. Naream would recognize it immediately as ground up bones.

    Seeing her acknowledging him as a invitation he approached closer, sitting opposite her on the other side of her drawing in the dirt. "So you are a speaker of the dead? Well I guess that might explain the fascination with my skeletons." He gestured to one who was patrolling the perimeter like he asked. "I must admit, it is refreshing to see someone to... show interest in my art and not simply cry out grave robber or defiler and assumes I am, in their words, 'evil' and therefore must be burned at the stake."

    "In a universe of magic, no state is final, no words are sacred, no concept immutable to the will of intellect..." She temporarily stops drawing in the dirt as her shoulders tense up, her eyes shooting up towards Naream, though strangely, she was not focused on him. "... Or ambition." Narrowing her eyes she looks at his arm. "Curious. It's not natural." Somehow, she was able to notice such a thing, or perhaps she was informed. "Your skeletons are unfortunately quiet to me. The interest is more in the technique, yours is quite refined... Years of practice under a skilled tutor, I presume."

    He raised his eyebrows, curious and intrigued. After a moment of thought he decided to get up and sit closer. Removing his gloves as he did so, revealing his skeletal hand and then rolled up his sleeve to reveal that his entire arm was in fact skeletal yet perfectly functioning as he held it out as if to offer it to her for inspection if she so wished. "Yes, years of practice, almost a century. My uncle, a great master practicioner himself but... lacked ambition on certain aspects of the art which I have actually succesfully experimented with." He nodded at his arm, "As one can see. The aspects of my art of necromancy are not known among the Amazons? Or at least the way I do it?"

    "Speakers are not Walkers." The Shaman replies, though realizing how vague a commentary that was, she clears her throat and ponders for a moment how to reply as she examines the bones with a morbid curiosity, lightly and cautiously touching them. "Shaman speak to the dead. We can hold spirits within ourselves, capture them, understand them and even control them. Necromancers play with the physical parts of the dead, Shamans with the spiritual..." She glances about at the surrounding area, noting that the rest of the Amazons were out of ear shot. "...Even my magic is sometimes misunderstood as evil. Necromancy would be... Difficult to explain to people obsessed with passion and life." Perhaps not outright disdain for her people, but she seemed to at least realize the folly of some of their beliefs as she returns to the drawing in the dirt. It was a glpyh of some kind. "Your master is still watching you." She adds idly, her small smile returning. "You should have stabbed higher."

    He widened his eyes for a moment reaching for a knife then relaxed and snorts, "Typical... did he say that I should have stabbed higher? Even in dead he berates me, how lovely..." Even so his mind was working rapidly, Harrad was a spirit or ghost now? A master necromancer in this state... would he pose a threat to him, something to be mindful off. "Well it was a bit problematic to stab him at the time, him trying to hurl a death curse at the princess, well queen now I suppose." He just said instead, smiling before curiousity got the better of him. "So... Harrad is his name... is watching me, is he? Right now?"

    "At points. He is good at hiding." She reaches into the bone dust pouch once more, grabbing a handful of it and hovering her hand over the glyph before throwing it over Naream's shoulder suddenly. For a few brief moments, a humanoid figure shimmered in the light before vanishing once more. "He's smart enough to leave before I can do anything but reveal him." She muses, her small smile growing. "I like the dead more than the living, personally. There's so much more to be learned from those beyond the veil." Finally, she finishes drawing the glyph, and motions Naream back a few feet.

    He managed to catch a glance of the figure revealed, seeing the ghost of a familiar smile and resisted a urge to shiver or grovel as memories of a time when his master was alive surfaces to his mind. He got up as she indicated taking a few steps back, taking in her words. "Perhaps, though might I suggest not listening to that particular voice of my old master... he was clever enough to become a outcast of the Drow... but not on they actively wanted to hunt down and anger if they failed to kill him." He said, trailing off as he went silent to observe the effects of her work.

    She pulls a small, ceremonial dagger from her waist and toys with it for a few moments before impaling the ground with it. The Glyph glows as Unamo shoves both of her hands into the dirt, surprisingly going through it: It was a small portal. With a single hard pull, she lifts a shimmering ghost out from the other side of the glyph. It floats in the air, its gender near indeterminable. "Go find the one with the heart of a wolf." It looks to Alexandria, confused. "No, the other one." Unamo says as she crosses her arms impatiently, though her smile was curved like that of daggers. "When you find it, come back to me, and I will set you free." The ghost seemed ecstatic as it vanished from sight, though Unamo's gaze seemed to follow it off into the jungle. "The lycanthrope will be found soon." She says cheerily before looking back to Naream. "And when it is, we can use it after we kill it as whatever you think it best to help take down that large, demonic beast."

    He had watched with great interest, seeing her pull out that spirit and giving it the command. "I would appreciate that... perhaps we could work on that together?" He stepped closer, thinking. "In fact, perhaps we can work together even more during this endavour or afterwards? I am quite interested in your methods, it might aid, or even enhance my own brand of necromancy. In return I could give you instructions on how I animated my skeletons... and other creations."
    Brovo: "Hm..." Unamo looks at the Amazonian princess, a bored expression in her eyes. "The blood runs thin." Her eyes then move back to Naream, a deep, almost childish curiosity coming from them. "I think I'd like that, if it means leaving this place behind."

    He smiled and bowed lightly, "Then let's hope your spirit finds our lycantrope... I am already looking forward what we can do with the remains of that beast together." He looked her over as if for the first time noticing her looks and liking what he saw, yes this might not be a bad arrangement if she would come with them after this quest. Assuming they both survived naturally, he did not voice that, simply smiling at her, as he actually did not hide him looking her over.

    Unamo didn't seem to have any particular reaction towards his interest, either not recognizing it compared to the brazen culture of Amazons or simply being focused on other things. "Many things, I would imagine."

    "Something to think about, but for now I suppose all we can do is wait for your spirit to return, though would be happy to spend the time discussing the theoretics of our crafts, if you do not object naturally." He said gesturing to a comfortable looking patch of the ground.

    "Naturally." She says, choosing to sit and lean against the trunk of an especially thick tree.
  17. Maeven Lucre // Amazons – The Greatest Hunt

    The entire incident with the succubus was enough to put Maeven on edge. She quickly took to riding upon Fafnir's back using him for protection once more as they rode out of the Amazon's commune as she found herself changing the parts of the blunderbuster once more. Short barrel with the soul gem left to her from her mother. She sighs softly, caressing over the smoothly worn wood stock before she begins to load it with a fresh bullet, packing it tight.

    It was not until Fafnir comes to a shuddering halt and looses a billow of steam that she even notices the devastation of the clearing. The mechanist woman looks up from her single-shot and peers about his neck, seeing the devastation as it was announced to them the cause of the devastation. It was not long before guards were set up and the creepy voodoo woman began to draw in the dirt and the other Blades began to busy themselves each doing... stuff? Maeven furrows her brow, they were doing something, she was not certain what. One of them appeared to be playing with the dirt too and a lot of talking appeared to be going on. The voice going through her head from Esyllt was chilling, though.

    Maeven slips off of Fafnir and makes the attempt to make herself useful, shifting over to the trees and inspecting them closely for a moment. They had been felled, of course, but it was apparent that they had simply been broken down by sheer force... And it would have taken a great deal of it. She was unsure if Fafnir would be capable of this scale of continued destruction without doing extensive damage to his chassis and inner mechanisms and needing extensive repairs. She furrows her brow and follows the trail, blood was splashed here and there along the way and she moves closer to inspect it. Everywhere it landed, whatever it touched was dead. She draws in a sharp breath and straightens herself up. That was two distinct conclusions she could draw right away... But what's more, the continued path of mayhem through the jungle, with how violently the creature was crashing through the trees, it must need to stop and rest once in a while.

    Finally, Maeven moves over to the necklaces, picking them up and turning them over in her hands. They had clearly been snapped off. She furrows her brow and looks about for any shreds of fabric, there were no signs of any anywhere. She would think that anything that would tear off a necklace would not be so discriminate and would be sure to shred off more, surely. Some sign of something more. Instead, there were just these. Even if they were the potential lycan, wouldn't they have also lost their clothing. She pinches the bridge of her nose.

    ”First of all, do these necklaces have any particular significance that any of you might notice?... Or am I just reading too much into them?” furrows her brow, passing them out between the Amazons to inspect. ”Next, it might sound crazy, but I get the feeling either we might be dealing with a tainted lycanthrope... Or we might actually be dealing with some tainted beast and lycans.”

    Maeven rocks back on her feet and points at the trees, ”First off, I doubt your standard lycan can bash through a series of trees that continues clear from this clearing to whoever knows how much further in a clear trail to follow... Next, we have the fact all the blood present, which is likely the same beast's is poisonous in nature and kills all that it touches... Finally, we do have an Amazon's presence, but only in the appearance of these necklaces... Then they simply vanish without another trace. I don't see a lycan just plucking off their jewelry for the hell of it without ripping their throats out to boot and leaving a fresh corpse for us to find, really.”

    Rayvon Krayvitch // Liveria – Heaven's Haven

    Rayvon pants heavily, blood rolling down her face as sweat begins to bead and trail down. Her hand trembles with her grip on her sword as she looks at the fallen champion, but still adrenaline courses through her body even after the leader of the orcs called off the fighting. She knits her brow together, trying to push away the feelings of unease, that it was not yet over, as she grips her cloak and wipes off the orc's gore from her blade before sheathing it.

    One of her own was still caught in the throes of battle, it seemed. She could not see that the half-orcs about her had ceased in their fighting. Rayvon sighs, pitying the blind warrior as she approaches the knight with silver eyes and in a gentle tone places a hand upon her shoulder. ”Our fight is over, Elrbetrt. Stay your blade. Come. I will help guide you.”

    She turns and scans over the remnants of the battlefield, the half-orc over the fallen Mila that she could barely sense the presence of the Princess within. Rayvon frowns and bows her head. There was little she could do for her at this time. It was no time for talk or to get caught up in her grief. They were still, as of yet, in hostile lands and there was a demonic presence about. Which, brings her attention back to what even allowed her to sense it at this time. Rayvon raises her voice to call back to the Drow priestess, ”Andrea, I imagine you might be loathe to the ascent, but I imagine Gabriel may be in need of your healing arts. Be a saint and see to him.”
  18. Free Holds - Devils Children
    Child was no stranger to the scenes infront of her. She to had been a slave once. And staying once more within its confines, albeit not as a slave but a infiltrator, brought here under other circumstances. Passing herself off as the bodyguard or gladiator of the troupe would be no big trouble. She looked the part well enough with her scars and all she had to do was to chanel what years in the area taught her about carrying yourself. She followed the 'dancers' closely, making sure to throw surly, vichius looks at people trying to get to handsy. Child found herself, much to her chargrin, keeping a tally of all the slaves she saw in passing. They were so many, reduced to property. Part of her, the dangerously unstable part told her Freehold be we better of burnt to the ground. The voices in slithering around her mind, constricting it with accusations of weakness and cowardice in the face of her past.

    But Child did not pay any heed to them. It would do her no good to let the voices influence her. Not at this stage anyways. If combat came, and she was forced to draw on them directly. She had learned that the hard way. Instead she tucked her shoulders in and took the pose of someone who were just uncomfortable midst those of power. Much like the slaves around her. She kept a close eye on Mikan and the others, waiting for things to go awry or complications to arise. A succubus Mikan had said, a demon of terrible seduction and desire. She would find that Childs' broken mind would likely be like trying to seduce of a sentient kaleidoscope. SO many fragments, so little semblance or sense. She took a position close to the dancer, but far enough to get a good view of the rest of the room. Trying to spot irregularities.
  19. Alicia Le'roux, Amazon Mission
    Featuring Brovo as Rashan.

    The resolution of the Succubus incident had been unsatisfactory for Alicia. They had managed to slay the demon, which was a positive, but that was about the only positive she could see. They failed to capture the demon, and they had nearly lost a member of the blades, due to careless-ness. Their entire plan had been based on a baseless assumption that the demon would not be able to deal with a simple mental probe, and that had proven false. It showed how little they knew of their foe, and how much they were truly stumbling in the dark here. Hell, if not for Fafnir, the demon might have even been able to strike a blow against either Alex or Ethlinn, and then what would Alicia have been able to do?

    What’s more, she had failed to be impressive, once again. She had managed to take Rashan to a draw, and even that was at best. She had been far too passive with the amazon, and missed numerous chances to perhaps beat the foe. Sure, she had drawn first blood, but that had been all she won in. After all, Rashan had landed two decent hits on the vampire, even if none drew blood. She had failed in honouring Alex, the Queen’s Blades and Ethlinn.

    Following the news that Esyllt had been healed, Alicia went about her business privately, requisitioning a new spear which was nigh-identical to the spear that Rashan had broken, as well as retrieving her rapier. It was comforting to carry her preferred weapon again, even if it would likely prove useless against the demon.

    With weapons ready, Alicia followed Ethlinn and the others through the forest in sombre silence. She was silently brooding over her performance, when Esyllt broke the small sphere of self-pity that Alicia had surrounded herself in. It caused her eyebrow to rise as the strange telepath spoke rather complimentarily about her duel: despite how disapproving Alicia had been. At first, she thought it to be a mocking gesture, but the woman’s polite smile had her realise otherwise. “I…was tutored in Liveria. I have also begun to train with General Hanus, but I feel my duel was a poor showing, I must admit. I foolishly underestimated my opponent, and I hope to do much better this time around. One cannot afford to underestimate a drake, after all.” She looked at the front of the group, towards Alex and Ethlinn. The two monarchs were the two she must impress, although for two drastically different reasons. “You were very brave to put yourself at risk in searching for the demon. It is a shame we could not catch her alive. We are lucky to have you, it seems.”

    Alicia and Esyllt seemed to split apart, after that. Alicia returned to a while of further peace and quiet, and admittedly, she felt her mood perk up after Esyllt’s little visit. It reminded her that they had not failed quite as disastrously as she first thought. Truth be told, they had succeeded, even if not perfectly. She should focus on what she had done correctly, not on her failings.

    Indeed, she glanced over at Rashan at this point. The woman had been a more than worthy opponent. Alicia would have to repair any animosity she harbored towards the woman. In her time alone, she had attempted to figure out why the Amazonian pair was so opposed to Ethlinn, and she quickly realised that it was simply their nature. Passion and pride: The core Amazonian concepts. She had soon realised that it was simply their pride that stopped them so readily accepting Ethlinn as their queen. She could hardly blame them, it was who they were. While she could not imagine her own self in their shoes, she could certainly understand and perhaps even sympathize.

    She began to make a move towards Rashan, in hopes of building a bridge, as opposed to burning one, when they reached the violent clearing. The blood stains and the torn necklaces told a tale of the victims, but it was the torn down trees and the claw marks that had Alicia worried. They were signs of a powerful creature, to be sure…A Drake though?

    It was at this point that Maeven began to speak up. Alicia listened to the woman, and was immediately shocked by the intricacy of the analysis. She had not even thought about the discarding of the necklaces or the lack of any major blood spill or a single corpse. The fact that the group might indeed be dealing with Were-beasts was another tidbit that caught her ear. Outside of the one time she'd observed Queen Alex, Alicia had never even seen a Were-creature, much less fought one. The idea of the hunt was equal parts scary and exciting. A thrill to be savored, she felt.

    "So what you are saying is that we are dealing with some sort of deliberate attack? Certainly more than a mindless Were-beast, to be sure." Alicia frowned, as she paused a few feet from Rashan. Her plans to make amends with the Amazon were suddenly halted, as she pondered what best to do next. If there were indeed sentient, intelligent Were-beasts, they were hunting for a reason. Could they be sent to hunt the Queen's Blades, or even the Queen and the Princess? It was a troublesome thought, to be sure.

    But perhaps the intelligence of these Werebeasts could be abused? Alicia paused, she had an idea blossoming in her mind, and it was crazy enough that it just might work.

    Alicia walks up to and stops beside Rashan. She bowed her head to the Amazon she had so recently fought to a stand still, and leaned in close to the warrior, so that she might whisper into her ear. "I say we go and hunt the hunters. Perhaps if we isolate ourselves from the group, the beasts might come after us: What a battle that could be."

    Rashan looks back to Alicia and smirks. "Tempting, but I'm no cub. Thrill means nothing if it takes your life." Anxiously, she runs a thumb down the shaft of her spear. "We will wait for the shaman to finish her work."

    Alicia bites her lip, realising that her plan would not work if she did not have Rashan's help. "A shame, I was hoping to lure out the monster with your help. I certainly consider you skilled enough to watch my back. You are probably right though, perhaps I am simply too eager to hunt down the ones who killed your sisters."

    "You're implying something, aren't you." Rashan says with a low growl, turning to look Alicia eye to eye. "And how do you propose that this, monster, as you put it, would be so feeble as to attack two well armed humans?"

    Alicia shakes her hands, trying to show herself as genuine. "I'm sorry, I mean nothing subtle or insulting. I merely hope to abuse this creature's intelligence. It left these necklaces for a reason, and it is clearly willing to hunt strong hunters. I merely thought that if we made ourselves obvious targets...prey even, then it might assume us easy targets, compared to an entire group of warriors and mages." She tries to smile at Rashan, attempting to be genuine. She was awful at talking with Amazons, it seemed. "I would not try and deceive you. I respect you as a warrior, even if I disagree with your opinions on the Princess."

    "You do not understand my opinion on the princess. Whether I like her or not is irrelevent: She has yet to prove herself." Looking out into the jungle, she narrows her eyes, watching a pair of love birds fly past them. "Would you really leave your Queen here to go hunting?" She mused. "I will join you on your little hunt, if you sincerely believe it would be effective."

    Alicia smiles as Rashan agrees to her plan, as well as the little comment on the end. "My Queen has been fighting monsters far greater than these long before I joined her. She is surrounded by other warriors and by a mechanical dragon, even. I am not so brazen as to think I am so important in the defense." Alicia contemplates what way best to progress, and she eventually settles on going away from both the direction of the greatest tree damage and away from the direction they had came from. Only time would tell if the Vampire's plan might work. "Thank you for trusting me, Rashan. I hope to prove worthy of it." At that, she grips the spear in her right hand, keeping herself ready for whatever was to come. After all, it wold likely be best to proceed with a weapon at the ready: no matter if her plan to lure out the lycanthrope was successful or not.

    Rashan shakes her head and follows. It was likely she believed the plan to be a folly one, but she had her reasons for following.
    #19 LimeyPanda, Nov 3, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2014
  20. “You act like a Drow woman with that pride. I drove you to anger and it caused you to make mistakes.” -Hanus, Page 6.

    Imperium - Anima Aeternum

    Trom and Nyla look to Florence to confirm the order, and he nods in approval. There was nothing else to discuss in that moment. As Trom follows the goblin and Gryff, he decidedly takes a position beside them, keeping his shield at the ready, though there was a notable dent in the center of it where the Skuva from the previous room had landed. Considering it was made out of a high quality timber, to dent it with a single strike and yet take no harm implied to both the mercenary and the alchemist that the Skuva had a great deal of pain tolerance. A few moments of silence follows, before he glances back with uncertainty. "Wish I could have taken his swords. They were pretty. My mother would have liked one." He says, the death of one of his comrades obviously weighing on him, even if he didn't really like the man.

    Nyla follows Murderok and Aslo, and in a similar fashion to her comrade, takes a position beside them, shield facing outward from the makeshift 'formation'. It didn't even seem to take any thought from her to do so, it had already been drilled into her to maximize her effective coverage of her compatriots. "I suppose we should be careful." The imperial soldier mused, not realizing that she was stating the obvious, though the look on her face showed nervousness. This likely was something she was not at all trained for. In combination with her young age, it meant she could be morally broken if she felt alone.

    Florence, meanwhile, puts away his pilum and unsheathes his gladius, tightning the grip on the inner portion of his shield he steps out between the two groups, never straying more than a few feet from one or the other. His centuries of training gave him an edge in reaction times that nobody else in the room could match as his eyes looked into the darkness of the ceiling. He was intentionally trying to serve as bait it seemed. Nyla looks at him with concern, though he either didn't notice or ignored it. Then, from the ceiling, a Skuva descends at breakneck pace, only to be side stepped by Florence, who proceeds to strike the Skuva twice in the side with his shield, knocking it to the ground. With a single step forward, he impales the Skuva's neck with his blade and ends its life as both the left and right groups reach the tables.

    As they do, Trom notices a single gold coin on the table. Gingerly sheathing his blade he grabs it, he then blinked in confusion. "No dust?" The boy whispered to his comrades, though it seemed to trigger something as the torches in the room suddenly light aflame alongside the walls and the pillars. On the ceiling were at least a dozen Skuva as Trom dropped the coin and rapidly unsheathed his blade, yet the Skuva didn't move as clapping was heard on the other side, where Florence's attention was locked. For once, he seemed tense, and the grip on his blade was tight enough to cause his knuckles to turn white.

    Before them, about a hundred feet away, was a large, monstrous creature. Standing at around sixteen feet in height, it had the body of a spider and the torso of a woman, though it seemed related to Driders, it was blatantly more intelligent, and gave off an aura of fear that, if any of the party were isolated, would likely spell a panic attack, followed up with a quick death. "Arachne." The Imperial General glared icily at it. "One of the weakest of the monsters we faced in our time. How is it that you lived, cretin?" The Arachne laughs, echoing in a chilling fashion throughout the hall the voice had a feminine, even rather seductive tone to it. One could mistake it for that of a beautiful woman, if their eyes were closed.

    "Simple... I hibernated... You do not think that a creature such as I would pass due to age, did you? You mortals are so predictable." The woman raises her hands and with that, several chains rise up off the floor. "Do you like what I did with your men?... Their bodies serviced me quite well..." The Skuva chitter happily, scurrying about the ceiling as half of them return to Arachne's side, leaving only six of them on the ceiling near the party. "Now that the spirits within this place have awakened me, I think I will embrace all of you as well... Hm?" A vicious smile graces her lips as Florence quickly shouts orders. "Trom! Nyla! Do what the Queen's Blades tell you to do!" As he issues this order the six Skuva on the ceiling start moving towards Gremlock, Trom, and Gryff, leaving the other group completely alone. Meanwhile, a quick count by Florence showed eight chains floating in the air, of which three were long and the other five were short. The Arachne takes advantage as she throws one of her hands out, sending out all three of the long chains towards Florence, who leaps out of the way of the first two, raising his shield to block the third one. It wraps around his shield and his arm, and with one pull, knocks him off his feet to the ground. While he was doing an admirable job to prevent Arachne from attacking the Queen's Blades before they could even get a move, it was apparent that this was the kind of creature one did not try to fight alone, and that Florence subsequently would not last long without help. Trom and Nyla looked to their compatriots, they needed orders, and they both shared one thought on their mind.

    Would they get out of this alive?

    Rheinfeld - Scheideweg

    Taigyn smiles with relief as Zin and Draza both explain what, to the Templar, was obvious. Alida Spiegel, on the other hand, frowns and wraps her fingers on the table, considering her options. She didn't like either set of options, really, but a look to Zin said enough. "... Pragmatism is sensible." The ex-templar says reluctantly before Taigyn suddenly moves to his feet, looking in the direction of the barn. "You felt that, didn't you?" Alida blinks. "What?" Taigyn glares with his one eye, almost not appearing to hear Laenaia's question. "Eustice? Who?... I don't recall any Eustice in my personal guard. Maybe among the general ranks..." He asks curiously before his eye opens widely. "Alida, you're an ex-Templar, open your mind." Alida looks around the tent, seemingly trying to peer outside at the surrounding area. "...You know, now that you mention it... Something does feel rather tense here. Beyond the negotiations." Taigyn nods. "I think we've been infiltrated." The ex-templar stands up and looks at the Queen's Blades, smiling in appreciation to them. "Already you've been more helpful than I originally thought... But, I need to ask you one more favour. Taigyn and I can handle gathering our most trusted and searching our ranks for infiltrators, we need you to go to the barn. Ensure whatever is up there is contained. Talk to it, or at least slow it down. If you need help, use your magic, and your telepathy. It will be a beacon that will attract any nearby Templar." As Alida turns to leave the tent with Taigyn, she hesitates, and looks back to Draza with a soft smile. "...And, I hope you accept my most sincere apologies for how we treated you back in Renalta, at the ball. The way we reacted to you trying to help. When this is all over, hopefully, you can teach my chefs how to bake some of those wonderful sweets you're so famous for in this country."

    Meanwhile, up at the Barn, as Kasim crests the hill with Moira, he spots Davian locked in a duel. Moira stops and hesitates, gasping in surprise. "An... Angel?" Davian was attempting to hold the angel back with his shield and blade, the angel wielding a two handed great sword that was bathed in holy flame, yet Davian's own weapons held a slight glow to them as well. "Why work for the Papacy?!" He spat out at the angel as the angel replied with a smirk. "Power. Why else?" With a grunt the angel shoves Davian back using his unnatural strength and wind magic to a pair of Republican soldiers. This whole battle was taking place inside the barn, with damage becoming evident with the man-shaped holes out the side of the barn. It had sustained a great deal of structural damage, there was no guarantees it would remain standing if it took another man-sized hole in the wall. Before Kasim and Moira can move however, a Templar quickly joins them. He nods to both Moira and Kasim. "My name is Eustice, I'm here to help!"

    So it became apparent. One angel against two Republican soldiers and Davian inside the barn, with a large entrance that Kasim, Eustice, and Moira could clearly see through. Moira however hesitated, her demonic blood likely telling her to flee from the presence of a holy force, yet the grip around her mace and shield tightened. "I will not retreat... Queen's Blade, what do you recommend?"

    Liveria - Heaven's Haven

    The Orc Shaman laughs as Andrea steps forth to talk to him. Looking her over, though, there was a certain level of respect in his blood red eyes, unlike that of his remaining compatriots, who looked at her with nothing more than a mixture of disrespect and what was either burning hatred or lust. He steps to the cliff's edge and continues to speak loudly, though with not quite the same volume as the voice that previously echoed outright violent sentiments. "A woman seeks to speak to me? Amusing." He glares at Gabriel. "You let your women dictate for you, angel?" Gabriel shakes his head as he gently cradles his wound, which continued to bleed, little droplets of blood striking the dirt beneath him. "This woman was powerful enough to keep you on the defensive with magic. You, an orc shaman. Show respect, or I will gladly become an avatar of vengeance for our fallen." The orc leader hesitates. While not scared, there was a look of discomfort at the possibility of enraging an angel further than he already had.

    The orc clears his throat. "Fine. The woman may speak for you... But only face to face." Lifting his hand, Andrea would feel herself being lifted. It was arcane magic that the orc was using, something usually only practiced by those of the Mage's Guild, which likely told her more about this orc than any of his compatriots knew at all: He was well educated. The thick accent was likely for show more than an actual difficulty to comprehend on his part. The magic was non-hostile, and as she reached the cliff's edge the shaman stepped back to give her space to gracefully step onto dirt to face him closely. The orcish archer grunts and stares at Andrea. Growing closer, only to be once again shoved into the wall by the Orc Shaman, who glares at him. "Mine." He growls lowly, the archer whimpers in compliance before being let down from the wall, gingerly rubbing his arm which had been repeatedly shoved into the wall with great force. The archer then looks at Elrithos and snorts. "Elf. Sand skin. Not like forest. Not weak." The orc seems to grin at that statement. "Did nothing but run around. Very weak." The shaman then steps face to face with Andrea, kneeling so he would be at face to face level. "Now speak, dark skin."

    Meanwhile, down below, the previously possessed half-orc stirred from unconsciousness, confused as his two brethren came over to help him. Princess Helénē continued to weep over the corpse of Mila for a few more moments before looking up at Ceann and taking a deep breath. "I thank you for showing such kindness. Mila would have thought it a waste of time, I think." The princess whispers as she places her hands in her lap and remains by the dead woman's corpse. Gabriel lands beside Helénē and grasps her shoulder lightly. That simple touch was enough to cause Helénē to cease crying, gasping lightly in surprise before looking up to the angel. The two shared a single look before Helénē nodded and slowly stood back up. "Thank you, Gabriel." The angel turns and looks to Rayvon, still cradling his wound as the rain slowly began to pick up pace, going to a quick spray as thunder rolled through the clouds. The rain was running through his fingers and down his armour as he brought his wings closer to his back so he could stay warm, blood rolled through the fingers to the ground where it quickly washed away. "I'll be fine for a while. Negotiations need to take place first."

    Helénē quietly looks up at Ceann, slowly rising to her feet. "You, ah... You come from the Underdark, right?" She asks tentatively, still obviously reeling from the death of her adviser, though Gabriel's mere touch seemed to lighten her heart. "... What's it like?"

    Free Holds - Devil's Children

    Mikan looked back to Mars as he made his comment and smirked. "I dunno about mugging, but I sure wouldn't mind lightning the load of some of these purses." Giggling, she takes a place near the front of the crowd, where the last of the slave cages were being brought out. It seemed that Deimos had changed the format, instead of going one cage at a time, they came in batches. Interesting. Surely it made for lowering bidding per cage, but it made for less opportunities to assassinate him with so much in the way. The last four cages are wheeled out, revealing an Orc with a scar running across his eyes, a male vampire named Durlon who immediately glared at Abida and smiled a little. The two had met before: They were both slave hunters, only now it seemed he had been enslaved. Irony at its finest. Still, he made no intention of revealing her, likely harbouring good thoughts towards her from their previous engagements. The third was a pair of women, slumped on their knees. The sign on the cage read "Crescent Sisters knock-offs: Put in their place." Judging from the looks of them, there was nothing special about them beyond being living people. The last cage, however, would immediately catch Aëyr's attention: Eüchia was in the cage! Eüchia glanced at Aëyr once, then looked back down towards the ground. It was likely that the slavers simply didn't bother to keep their word and banished Aëyr purely for their own amusement.

    Fahim looks at both Aëyr and Abida sympathetically. He could only had enough money to purchase one for certain. The others would likely be dealt a horrible death the moment the assassination took place, as slaves were often the first to die in riots and assassination attempts in the Free Holds, leave alone caged ones. Deimos rises to his feet and looks over the crowd, not seeing anyone in particular of interest, he simply addresses the whole crowd. "LADIES! GENTLEMEN! I present to you, five, glorious specimens!" As he motions over the cages, Abida follows a momentary glance to a woman standing near Mikan. Unlike most there, she was dressed rather like nobility rather than a slutty bar maid, and kept her hands in her pockets as she looked over the cages with a smirk. Abida's eyesight would notice a tail ordinarily hidden from view, perhaps by magic, perhaps by something else. It was most certainly not human, and thanks to her past, she was able to discern what it was: A demon, of some sort. Perhaps her target. Child also felt something strange from this woman, though before he could ascertain any further information, he momentarily felt weak. The connection between him and Gabriel: The angel had been injured, and though he didn't sustain an injury as a result, he could feel slight hints of Gabriel's pain through the connection. Child did however then notice a Drow priestess, with a couple of bodyguards, staring at Mikan with a sly smile, and a possessive look in her eyes. That one would be trouble, he could already tell.

    "The Orc comes from the despicable rebellion led by Xixis, a cretin fascinated with distant southern culture, he is a skilled hand to hand warrior. Breaking ceremonies will be up to the buyer. The vampire was once a slave hunter, but he defected to protect some woman he met recently. We found them both in a conclave of vampires, and slaughtered them all, but he has since sworn to serve a new master. He is a skilled fighter and tracker. The Crescent Sister knockoffs are telepathically tied to each other, and operate as one in combat, making them incredible potent. A shame they have none of the skill of those they wish to ape. Finally, we have a ripe, sweet little thing from the sea, having been sold to me, I can assure all of you she has her... Uses. However, I have grown bored of her, and wish to resell her. Let the bidding commence!"

    As the bidding starts, Mikan ushers Mars to come closer. It appears she needed him for one reason or another as she glanced at the ceiling. There was a spotlight of some kind, run by some advanced form of magic, likely Mechanist in origin. Following her eyes, he would see a large rope holding it up which was likely used to help keep the spotlight on someone especially interesting. Motioning up, there was a small balcony a few feet above the ground where an operator kept the light shining. "Honey, mind finding a way to... 'Convince' the operator to shine on my performance a little more before we start our dance together?" She says with a giggle through her mask. If she left, others would notice simply because they were staring at her. There was a small set of stairs leading up to the balcony, and auspiciously, there were no guards. It seemed almost intentional. Perhaps they wanted people to try bribing the light operator only to keep the gold, or secrets obtained. Perhaps they just didn't care enough to guard the light operator. Only one way to find out.

    Amazons - The Greatest Hunt

    Umano growled in annoyance as she started pacing back and forth in the dirt. "Spirit is taking too long. Haaaa." Looking about the area, she then stares back at the dirt, frustrated with the lack of progress, though her eyes did momentarily flirt up to Esyllt and Naream. Looking at the necklaces, she had nothing to add, though Ethlinn stepped away from Alexandria and snatched one out of Maeven's hands as she looked at the intricate carvings and insignia's. Sighing in dismay, she looks to Tasha. "I see why you are all so angry now. These were your people..." Tasha growls as she snatches the necklace away, and then whimpers as she looks at it. "...Mother..." She whispers under her breath before holding the necklace closely to her chest. Ethlinn's mouth opens, then closes, being at a loss for words for Tasha as she turns away in dismay, a look of intense regret on her face that Maeven and Alexandria could readily see. This was not a woman used to the weight of leadership.

    The somber moment was broken as a monkey falls from a tree onto Fafnir's back, landing with a loud thud he stares at Fafnir before climbing off and running toward Maeven, hiding behind Maeven's legs in fear. Unamo then speaks, confusion in her tone. "Where are Rashan and Alicia?" Unamo then seems to realize what was going on, and glares at Ethlinn. "Useless." There was no sign where Alicia and Rashan had run off to, due to how thick the canopy was.

    Meanwhile, having already put a decent amount of space between themselves and the main group, Rashan and Alicia find themselves in a small clearing, no greater than fifteen square feet in size with a small, shallow basin of water in the middle of it. Rashan stops them both and looks around the interior of the jungle. There was a growl coming from in front of them both as a large creature steps out... A boar, which promptly begins to drink from the basin. Sighing in relief and shaking her head, Rashan looks at Alicia and laughs. "Some hunt." Still. Alicia's vampiric instinct told her something was hunting them close by, staring at them. She could almost feel its presence: The Lycanthrope had to be nearby.
    #20 Brovo, Nov 4, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2014
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