Map and Compass [IC]

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Coup de Gravy!
Original poster
Writing Levels
  1. Intermediate
  2. Adept
Preferred Character Gender
  1. Male
Fantasy, Scifi, Mystery
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The white robed devout men and women started to leave the building in the center of the settlement with a serene grace until only two people remained inside. A strange noise came from each, almost as if they were speaking in a crude language.


As the sound of chanting echoed from the Church throughout the entire Settlement, in the Outer District, the next day's Hunt's members gathered at the mess hall. With the screeching cacophony setting the mood, the fresh and old Hunters alike were waiting to start enjoying their meals. Some of the people in the room would have their first hunt the next day. The nervous faces could be distinguished with ease as very few seemed to be trying to suppress their fears. On the other hand, some seemed rather excited and joyful, in contrast to their morose counterparts.

Leaning on a stick, a kindly old man with a very distinctive, wide scar going over the left side of his face, disappearing behind his cloak walked in through the door as one of the Hunters opened it for him. The Hunters and Huntresses turned, staring at the man as he seemed to taste the air, closing and opening his mouth a few times. He walked towards the opening at the center of the room with a sheet of paper in his hands.

Fjolnir 'Bullseye'

The man's name was revered even among the inner district's citizens. One of the few Hunters ever to get a chance to retire of old age, Fjolnir was the Elder in charge of the Hunters' expeditions.

"Looks like we have some new... eh... new Hunters among us, heh?" The man spoke out, chuckling lightly. "Eisenfier, Marche, Jarkus, Cian, Valeria and Emer." The man paused for a moment. "You will be with... Ceolwynn during tomorrow's Hunt, so I suggest you get acquainted, eh?" He gave a warm smile around before continuing with his counting.​
To be considered new was an insult to her blade. She couldn't help it, however. It would be her first official hunt. She was determined to bring a new meaning to her clan.


Slaying the basilisk had so far been her greatest achievement, and a testament to her prowess in combat. She was good for more than just taming animals. That she'd be made to hunt with others was no problem - she'd grown to anticipate long incursions into the wilds with her allies, trading stories, tips, and debts. Saving others from certain death and being saved herself. What was a problem was that this hunt was to be a tutorial. She dreaded the idea of someone telling her how to kill a creature. She had much to learn, that was true, but she already was more practiced than many of her peers. Likely, she'd be the one handing out tips. One thing that she kept thinking of was Do not tell me how to stab with a cutting blade. She reserved her fury, however. No time to rage against those offering her assistance. Maybe she'd learn something, and she'd be wrong. She'd be surprised, but pleasantly so.

Eisenfier took her meal and sat directly across from her first comrade, Coelwynn, as suggested. She went after the meat first, indulging in the succulent and savory flavor. She was not used to eating much, as her childhood was harsh, so she ate heartily. She seemed to ignore her comrade to be, and the ones who were to come. In reality, she wasn't one for starting conversation. She'd likely come off as a cold bitch, but would have opportunities to prove herself otherwise. It was how she lived. If they run, they're not worth your time. If they stay (as many she'd meet today would be made to) she would show them her true self.

For now, she would simply eye them furiously while tearing into her meat.
Valeria Imke Byrne

Walking towards the table where she would meet the others, the usual small hint of a smile was present on her small lips, as she headed towards the place. She was to be honest not that anxious to head out. The stories of hunters and huntresses dying were greater in number than those who made it out. Bolstered by the memory that she had passed the rite of passage, Valeria tried to keep up her confidence. Spotting the table where she would meet the others, Valeria halted for a moment.

She spotted two people, both who she didn't know from before. Take a small breath in, she would wait for a second. Breathing out, she would begin to head to the table. "Hello, Valeria." She introduced herself, slight worried by the furious glance that one of the present people gave her. Taking a seat, she stayed silent for a moment. Her gazed moved to missing eye of the girl, though Valeria would move her gaze in a subtle manner away as she wasn't planning to invoke any hostility by staring at the other. Placing her hands on her laps, she would proceed to silently wait while keeping her head a bit lowered.

Her thoughts went briefly to what tomorrow would entitle. Heading out of the mist, the very idea made her rather silent than trying to spark a conversation at the moment. It had likely somewhat to do with the look that the other girl was giving, but Valeria decided that she would try her best to join a conversation. Hopefully she could muster some courage and control her nerves in the meanwhile.
Jarkus strolled up to the group, butterflies flickering in his stomach. He'd sharpened Jorman, restrung Elina, made all the preparations. Still, it was time. One last night before going out into the mist. One last night before he started to even the score. Dad. Mum. His weapons, a promise to their spirits. Friends who'd passed the Trial before him and never come home. Friends who never made it that far, dying in the pit. Jarkus had enough evening of the score to do for a few hunts. It would do him well to get to know those who he'd be with. Hopefully, those he'd be with for a while.

Settling down next to them, the delicious scent of the meat wafted up to his nose. He hadn't really eaten so well recently - living on his own was an incitement to eating whatever. Tearing into the food with gusto, he paused as one of them introduced themselves. "Aha, so there's another non-mute in the group! Name's Jarkus, pleasure to meet you Valeria. On current evidence you may be the only decent conversationalist in the group! I was starting to worry about talking to myself the whole way there and back, which would be...worrying to say the least." Jarkus paused his words to take another bite of his meat. "So anyone else here want to introduce themselves? It's always nice to know who you're shouting a warning to. 'Oi, you!' is a phrase I've always found to be dangerously distracting." Putting a slight smile on his face, Jarkus bit in again. Damn this meat was good. He'd have to start taking proper care of himself...eventually.
Marche Alwin Lunarc

As he listened to the old man speak, a glint of light could be seen in the excited boy's eyes. He could recite the perils of leaving the mist as he'd been taught how to protect himself from most of them, but he didn't seem to truly understand as he'd claimed. Upon hearing his name, Marche's eyes darted around until he noticed the Huntress to lead their group on the morrow sitting on a table with others joining. Rushing over just in time to hear one of his new comrades speak and introduce himself.

Sitting down on the side of the table, Marche took his fork and looked down at the meat before at the others at the table. "Nice to meet you guys! Euhm..." Scratching the side of his chin, the boy grew a bit anxious, retaining the rather foolish smirk on his lips. "I'm Marche. I guess we're going on our first Hunt together, huh? That's great! You guys look like a great bunch!" After a rapid flurry of words, the boy widened his smile and looked around one more time.

Listening to the words of the elder, whose name he already forgot, he counted the names until he realised a moment later they were instructed to join the hunter that will be leading them in the hunt the following day, and it took another moment to realise his own name was mentioned when he repeated the names once. Losing track of all the names, he looked around for a moment before spotting a table that was slowly becoming crowded as new people joined.

Coming close to the table, he heard one of the boys introduce themselves, and tried to remember if his name was one that he heard the Elder say, but couldn't focus on it now. Sitting down next to the boy who introduced himself as Marche, Cian nodded "Hey there. Cian is happy to meet all of you. He said very briefly before leaning back in his chair and moving to stare at the sky above them.
Emer Irondust

She stared at the old man, her left hand on her hip and an almost challenging expression plastered over her face. Emer felt nervous and even anxious to the point she considered if she couldn't drop out. With Fjolnir continuing, Emer grew angry on herself. She wouldn't just be the coward to flee with tails between her legs! No, she would see this to the bitter end, she thought with her rather ignorant pride.

As the last one, Emer threw her usual challenging expression - her left eyebrow perked up and a clear glance in her eyes - towards the table where some others were gathering. She observed them for a moment, not wanting to approach them yet. Truth be told, she was a bit nervous for meeting with people she wasn't familiar with. But her pride made her scoff lightly before she would head towards the table. In an almost arrogant manner, Emer tried to carry herself to the others, wanting to impress them.

Though that would fail.​

Nearing the table, Emer noticed movement in the right corner of her eyes. Needing to come to a halt, to avoid colliding to another person, she almost had let out a yelp and dropped her 'tough' attitude. Realizing this a moment later, Emer would look away as she further approached the table. Taking a seat, she would first fall into silence. First she listened to what the other said, trying to act like she wasn't too much interested. It was however that she was more wondering. Had her siblings also undergo this? How had they experienced this as well? What were their thoughts and emotions? Realizing that if she was too silent, they could perhaps conclude that she was timid! Something that was unacceptable in the opinion of Emer.

"Emer Irondust," she said, trying to sound more confident and prideful than she felt at the moment, "I hope we'll be able to hunt down some creatures." Emer then looked a moment away. She was feeling slight out of place, not sure what to say. One part of her wanted to make it clear that she demanded them to not walk in front of them, but another part - a more shy and insecure - of her didn't want to antagonize. Knowing very well that she wouldn't make a chance against the Creatures - a memory flash of her time in the pit remembered her of that. Placing her elbows on the table, she tried to subdue and calm her stomach.

She was so not nervous...​
~The Next Day~

As the sun rose over the hills beyond the mist, creating a dimly illuminated fraction towards the corner of the Settlement. A party of five groups of seven were set to leave with Ceolwynn's team was put at the behind of the formation while the other four squads spread out like a curved wall in front of them with a good distance away from them. Once they were all out of sight, Ceolwynn turned to her new suboordinates with a rather dubious look.


"We're leaving as well. Remember," she said, narrowing her eyes, "don't break off. If you get lost, you'll be on your own. Something'll probably eat you for breakfast. Got it? Good."

Without waiting for them to give a response, she spun on her heel and started to make her way out of the thick mist, not bothering to look back to see if the greens were following her.
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The morning of the Hunt. Eisenfier's eye was on fire. Her blades gleaned, hungry for the blood of their cousins. It was time to kill the enemy. She was tense with anticipation, and craved to wet her blades. Now that they were in the wilds, she saw no reason to sheathe them. She had them out and gripped them tightly, desiring the confrontation.

Coelwynn made a remark about staying in the group, which caused Eisenfier to snort in disgust. "You have some of us mistaken for easy prey. Though your advice is sound, I for one find it unnecessary. Maybe the younger ones could use it, but I'd be better off learning about things I don't already know - like traps. Can you teach us how to make traps?"

That would be a subject of some interest to her. She knew of trapping animals, but she was not concerned with that. The creatures of the world were her prey, not rabbits. She hadn't heard much of trapping creatures, so if it was possible, she wanted to learn how.
Emer Irondust

The morning, Emer had gotten up earlier than normal. She had done this because she wasn't only anxious. It was also to be sure she was fully prepared. From cleaning her sword to making sure that she wouldn't forget anything. Being completely sure, Emer would then head to the meeting point on the designated time. Noticing the other formations and groups, Emer remained silent and kept a blank expression on her face.

Listening to Ceolwyn, Emer simply nodded, but then heard what Eisenfier said. For a moment, Emer turned her head to glance sideways at the other girl. Slowly the hands of Emer clenched into fists as she narrowed her eyes. She already was about to part her lips and tell the girl - Eisenfier- a piece of her mind. Who was she to decide if somebody else was easy prey?

Then she realized something. Actions spoke louder than words, didn't they? Clenching her lips on each other, Emer relaxed a bit as she decided to not speak up. Instead she would remain silent, glancing at the others for a moment. "I'm ready." Emer mumbled, more to herself than to somebody else.
Valeria Imke Byrne

Tying her hair into a ponytail, Valeria let out some soft breaths in as she focused on her breathing. Today would be the day of reckoning, she thought in a dramatic manner. Not because she was eager to fight the creatures or because she hated them. Cause she hated them and wanted to kill them, likely as anybody else who had lost a dear one to them. But she considered this to be a new chapter of her life. If she would survive this, then she could keep working on becoming a better hunter.

Moving out to head towards the location where the others would be, Valeria almost experienced a heavier kind of air. It were her own nerves, but she tried to not show that too much. Focusing on Ceolwynn, Valeria barely registered the words of Eisenfier. "I'm ready." She said, trying to sound calm, but her tone was probably still quite friendly. Curiously, she glanced at the others, but would soon enough focus on Ceolwynn. Somewhere she had the idea that a slip of focus would be all that could decide life and dead today. More than the proving in the pits.
Marche Alwin Lunarc

Marche looked forward at the mist, his excitement ever growing even as he started to realize the immediate threat just out there, possibly waiting to prounce on them. As the idea started to sink in only too late, the boy gulped. Although the some of the others seemed nervous as well, they appeared determined enough to confirm their abilities to move forward. In the next seconds, Marche's expression shifted from excitement to hesitence to despair to finally loop back to the original curiously enthusiastic visage as he thought of all he could see beyond.

"Not ready! Left the oven on!" Jarkus responded with a jokey grin. Twirling Jorman up to rest across his shoulders, and adjusting the fit of the strap that held Elina tucked against the small of his back, he walked along with the rest of the group. As he walked through the thick mist, the tendrils almost seemed to be pulling him back, as a maelstrom of conflicting emotions swirled underneath his lighthearted grin. Curiosity, about the world beyond the confines of the Settlement. Fear, of both the unknown territory, and the Creatures that claimed so many lives, and left more broken in their wake. Anger, at the mindless beasts that had caused so much suffering. And finally determination, to start evening the score. First for himself. Then for others. Jarkus had never felt more eager, even with the whisperings of doubt in the back of his mind. "So then, Marche," he said, turning to the nearby youth, "How many monsters do you reckon you can score today?"

As he walked behind the others, Cian nodded as he started to repeat to himself to not break off from the others. He didn't pay too much attentions to what the others said as he wanted to focus his sight on Ceolwynn. Closing his right eye, he stared at the back of the woman as he kept walking behind the rest "Cian is ready." He said, and then looked at the backs of the others in front of him. He wondered how the hunt would go as he forgot what he was repeating to himself before.
Marche Alwin Lunarc

Marche gave a rather surprised look at Jarkus before raising his eyes in thought. "Hm... I'm not sure if I'll be able to--"


"Cut the chatter! We'll be out of the Mist soon."

As the group kept moving, the thick grey haze in the air started to grow weaker. Finally, everything became much clearer for the eyes to see. An uncommon view came into sight with the towering mountains becoming visible through the openings of the leaves of the trees surrounding them.

Already near them was a corpse of a small lizard-like creature, only the size of a regular adult, with its teeth sunk into the torn up chest of a fresh corpse. Some loud cries and roars could be heard from the group on the right up ahead.

"That's a bit ominous..."

Emer Irondust

Staying silent, wanting to put focus on the surrounding and any potential danger, Emer found herself slight distracted by the others talking. She however remained quiet as she wasn't too sure what to say. She was having mixed opinions. One part of her wanted to pay focus to the surrounding. One slip of focus could mean the difference between life and death.

Her left hand kept leaning on the hilt of her blade. Simply resting, for now. "Creatures." Emer mumbled as she also caught sight of the creature up ahead. Her blood started to pump faster. Placing the fingers of her right hand around the soft handle of her sword, Emer licked her lips. Glancing towards Ceolwynn, she wondered for a moment about charging in. They - all the hunters and groups - could surely overwhelm this solitary creature. Couldn't they?

- As per requested.
As they emerged from the mist, Jarkus' view was drawn not to the vista of the surrounding world, viewed clearly for the first time, but to the small scaled corpse and the body it bit down on even in death. Another who would not be going home tonight. Another family left broken. For a moment, the corpse seemed to Jarkus to be his own father lying there, his chest torn open and his blood pooling in the wounds. Clenching his teeth, he shook his head briskly, dispelling the daydream. He hadn't come here to mope.

From the corner of his eye, Jarkus noticed Emer dropping towards a combat stance, hand seeking her sword. Had she not spotted? Or was it rage at the sight of the corpse? Resting his hand on her shoulder, Jarkus sighed. "Easy there. It's dead. Not a lot of good hacking into it now, save that for the butchers back home." Jarkus turned his face towards Ceolwynn. "What's our next move?" It sounded like the group to their right were in combat, and Jarkus was hoping for the order to go and help.
Marche Alwin Lunarc

"Our next move, as you put it, is to simply continue to move," Ceolwynn said. "Don't forget that you're all still green behind the ears. You won't be having much excitement today."

Ceolwynn led the group further into the forest. After a few moments, the yelling, the spells... All of the noise coming from the group ahead stopped with the exception of the monstrous roaring that stirred up the wind. "G-good," Marche muttered. "I don't want to see whatever's making that beastly sound..."
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