The Elder Invasion: CHAPTER 3 - Anirune Forest

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Iwaku Forest, sometimes known as Anirune Forest, was a place created by the heart's desire. Tyler Crane, an old hero of the Admin War, used the last energy of his dying homeworld to plant a seed, and from there a forest grew that sheltered and sustained the refugees of the Admin War. It was from the safety of Anirune Forest that the building of Iwaku City was planned and carried out.

Nowadays, the Forest continues to grow, becoming dense and maze-like with each passing year. There are whole swathes of jungle, swamps and rainforest - a bounty of nature. Some places of legend have been long-buried beneath Anirune, including the crash-sites of the Three Ships, the grave of Razilin, the Lake of Woodrat where King Gabriel was last seen, and Jack's meadow retreat.

The forest is an uncharted and magical place, home to creatures beyond imagining and secrets both wondrous and terrifying.

[Power Hierarchy: S, D, C, R]
Re: Anirune Forest

A ray of light barely made its way down the forest canopy and landed on megane-kun's sleepy eyes. He lazily opened his eyes and saw nothing but the leafy ceiling and beams of light piercing that almost impenetrable cover of leaves. If it were not for them, he would not have seen anything around him, for the forest around him was a very wild one, trees all around and leaves covered every square inch of the sky above.

He shut his eyes again and turned over, hoping to be able to sleep once more. Yes, he wanted to sleep. He wanted to forget that he has been hopelessly lost in an immense forest and that he has been slowly dying of hunger.

"Whatever did I do to deserve this fate?" he asked himself as he gathered more dry leaves for him to rest his head against.

"I seemed to have fallen off some cliff..." he thought as he stretched his neck, and laid it back in a more comfortable position, "And then this!"

Silence, accentuated by the occasional rustle of leaves. This both lulled and irritated him. Peaceful as it might be, it only served as an additional reminder of his increasingly desperate situation.

"I'd better not think about this, perhaps when I wake up, I am back to wherever I should be"

With that, he buried his head deeper into the pile of leaves, but soon found himself unable to breathe. After a bit of moving around, he finally settled for a comfortable position and soon drifted off to sleep.
Re: Anirune Forest


An empty expanse of rock, lit by a grey sky crackling with the occasional blast of lightning, spreads out before me. It’s hard to tell where the ground ends and the sky begins. The expanse seems endless, as if the same rock and grey sky will go on forever...

...Yet as I stride forward through the empty plane, the landscape begins to shift, rock changing to dirt and grass, the sky shifting to an azure sunset. Such is the nature of the Never-Never; nothing ever stays the same. It is a dimension constantly shifting and changing.

The plane shifts again, this time with mountains and hills rising from the ground to block my route through the Never-Never; evidently the forces that control this dimension really don’t want me getting to where I want to go.

Mind you, they’ve been trying to kill me for years now, so it’s hardly surprising.

Calling upon the spirits that fuel my spells, I begin to flit in and out of sight, moving forwards and over the mountains at a rapid speed. With an angry snarl, the mountains shrink back into the ground once again. Arrayed before me now are the creatures that call this insane dimension home; nameless, featureless things that shift with the changes in the landscape, huge, glowing orb-like eyes being their only feature.

The beings of the Never-Never charge, and I begin to move through them, using my ability to teleport to avoid having to fight them. My energies in this place are finite, so there’s no sense in wasting them on such pathetic life-forms.

I’m through the creatures before they’ve really even noticed; a few turn to see me sprinting away from them, but they don’t have the reactions to turn and chase me in time. Yet the Never-Never isn’t giving up without a fight; before me, the ground shoots up, a titanic wall of basalt-like rock rising from the ground. And down from the sky descends a similar mountain, racing down to meet its counterpart.

The laws of physics as humanity knows them don’t really apply in this dimension, to put it simply.

I leap into the air, releasing some of my pent-up energy to drive me into the air. I begin flitting in and out of sight, gaining momentum. I reach the top of the rising mountain, and race to the other side, desperate to reach it before the two mountains meet.

Launching myself into the air, I clear the edge of the mountain just as the two collide; the force of the crash sends me spinning through the air, out of control, and the roar from rock smashing against rock is almost deafening. Yet when I hit the ground, my goal is in sight.

It’s an ordinary metal door, sitting in the middle of the ever-changing landscape, one of the few permanent features in this dimension. It looks completely out of place, this stainless steel door set into the ground with no features other than a small lock and a handle.

I sprint to the door as the mountains behind me begin to crumble, sending an explosion of rock hurtling down towards me. From under my shirt, I pull a key, carved from bone and hung around my neck by a chain. This small object is why the forces of the Never-Never want me dead, what they want back so very dearly.

Too bad for them, really. I need their Dimension Key more than they do.

Sliding the key into the lock, I twist it, focusing hard on my destination. Then I shoulder my way through the door and slam it shut behind me, just as the towering blocks of basalt bear down upon the small, metal door.


Taking a deep breath, I tuck the Dimension Key back under my shirt, I gaze around at my surroundings. I stand before an old, rusting metal door, set into the side of an ancient airship. Gazing up, I recognise the Legacy, resting where Asmodeus and Paorou brought it down at the climax of the war.

Surrounding the ship is a vast expanse of forest; Tyler Crane’s work, if I remember rightly. His forest has certainly expanded since I was last here.

How long has it been since the War? What’s drawn me back after all this time, an urge so strong I was prepared to go up against the masters of the Never-Never in order to return? I need answers, and I’m sure as hell not going to get them in the wreckage of the Legacy. This place looks like it hasn’t been touched since the War. It sits as a testament to a harder time, of a sacrifice made by the people of Iwaku. I have no business here.

Sighing, I take one last look at the wreckage before beginning to pick my way through the wreckage and move through the trees. Hopefully I can find a trail that will lead me out of the forest and towards civilisation.

Grumpy fights his way through the Never-Never, a dimension beyond Iwaku. He has stolen a Dimension Key from the forces that control the Never-Never, so they're out to kill him and get the key back. Using the key to create a gateway to Iwaku, Grumpy finds himself at the wreckage of the Legacy in Anirune Forest.
Re: Anirune Forest

Darkness..... “You killed them, VAY YOU KILLED THEM!!...................... <i>Collect his skull for the throne</i>..............metal corridors, twisted, warped....................... a friend's scream, the taste of blood..................... You ate them too didn't you............ NOOOO, VAY DON'T!

Vay sat up his eyes flying open. An only half-familiar sight greeted his eyes. “Klkn”* he swore loudly putting a clawed hand to his head at pain throbbed through it, like every time he had the dream.

He looked around trying to remember where he was, he was in a tree, that much was obvious, but where where the others, the warsphrere had to had landed, it had... then he remembered, or rather didn't. The had entered the warp, and them he had been here, in this forest, alone. He had searched for days but not would any sign of the warshere, or any other kroot. “Kre Ui't”** he swore again before giving in to the fact that he was awake and may as well find himself some food. He picked up his rifle and grabbed a branch in one hand and swung down bringing his feet against the trunk of the tree and pushed of sending himself flying towards a nearby tree where he grabs a low branch and swung down landing on the leafy ground, it took him a second to notice a human lying on the ground. “Bap Gue'la?” he asked before switching languages “Are you lost human?” he asked, he remained ready to defend himself if needed, but this oned didn't seen to be from the imperium.

* Curse
** Treacherous bitch
Re: Anirune Forest

Somewhere within Anirune Forest...


Magdelene cried at the top of her lungs as she struggled to her feet after landing buttocks first into the hard, knobbly forest floor. Her behind ached and her dress was dirty but they were the very least of her problems.

"Argh! I bungled up step 7! You stupid, stupid girl!" She wailed softly to herself feeling tears swell up in her eyes but she managed to pull herself together and wipe away the wetness in her eyes. "Don't panic... just breathe... remember the first chapter of the spell book..." Magdelene breathed deeply and began to concentrate but after a while, she began to wail again, this time collapsing helplessly back onto the ground, "Oh! It's no use!! I can't remember the steps to undo everything..."

Disgruntled and a little homesick by now, the elemental witch looked around at her surroundings for the first time and realised that she had somehow warped herself into a strange forest which she didn't recognise in the slightest. None of the flora nor fauna were recognisable to her and a trickle fear slid down her back like a cold icicle.

Oh, broomsticks... where in heavens have I warped myself to? She thought worriedly to herself.

"H-hello?" She shouted, though not too loudly - who knew what was in this strange forest, after all? "Is anybody there? Or am I alone...?"
Re: Anirune Forest

"Hnggg.... Five more minutes, kuya. Pramis, gigising na talaga ako..."[1] megane-kun murmured in his sleep.

"Bap Gue'la?" a voice, husky and hissy, asked.

"What? Hindi kita maintindihan kuya..."[2] megane-kun asked, a bit bewildered, and still half-asleep.

Megane-kun sat up and opened his eyes to see a creature staring at him. He put on his eyeglasses on just to make sure that he weren't seeing things. But indeed, it was a creature looking at him.

"WHOA!!" he exclaimed to himself as he tried to back-off. "Wh... what are you... d...."

“Are you lost human?” the creature asked megane-kun.

"I suppose I am lost here, but aren't you also lost?" he blurted out.

"At least he's friendly, or he found me unappetizing." he thought as he sighed and got up.

"This forest is simply huge, and I've been trying to find my way out of this forest maze for the longest time," he went on as he tried to examine the creature. The creature was vaguely human, but not quite human. The creature has a head quite similar to that of a horse, a very lean body, and equally lithe extremities. The creature's hands and feet had very long, sharp claws, something which megane-kun thought could easily kill him if he weren't careful.

"At least I now have a companion. And he seems to be a pretty dependable one at that..." he thought as he waited for the creature's reply.

megane-kun woke up to see vay looking at him, and asking him if he were lost.

[1] "Hnggg.... Five more minutes, kuya. Pramis, gigising na talaga ako..."
-- "Five more minutes, big brother. Promise, I will really wake up...."

[2] "What? Hindi kita maintindihan kuya..."
-- What? I can't understand you, big brother.
Re: Anirune Forest


Well, Tyler Crane's certainly been working on his forest steadily since I was last here. So much so that there doesn't appear to be a trail or pathway in sight.

I force my way through the underbrush of the forest floor, cursing under my breath. Things are never simple in this world; I finally return to Iwaku, only to find myself lost in a fucking forest. Luck, as ever, has deserted me.

Ahead, a rush of magical energy hits me and a voice pierces the otherwise omniscient silence of the forest. Given the nature of the forest, and what sort of creatures could be lurking within it, it seems to me that whoever is doing the shouting is either crazy, or really doesn’t know where they are.

"H-hello? Is anybody there? Or am I alone...?" the voice calls, and I begin to move towards the source. Sounds like somebody’s lost, but there’s a chance that whoever this is may know where the fucking exit is located.

As I move towards the source of the shouting, I see a small woman standing amidst the trees, staring around at her surroundings. Lost, then. So much for fining someone who knows how to get out of here.
”Could I suggest that you stop shouting?” I say from behind the woman, ”I don’t know if this forest is any friendlier than it was when I was last here, but I seriously doubt it.”

Grumpy hears Magdelene's shouting ahead of him, and upon catching up to her position suggests she stop shouting in case anything unfriendly is in the area around them.
Re: Anirune Forest


A hysterical cry broke the silence of the forest. Instinctively, the creature turned towards the source of that ruckus.

"What the heck was that? Is it somebody being eaten, by a holy mother?" megane-kun thought as he also turned to where the creature was looking.

The loud cry was followed by a few more shouts, but megane-kun couldn't hear them clearly.

"Should we go? I think somebody's in trouble." megane-kun asked the creature, without even waiting for him to answer his first question.

megane-kun and vay heard magdalene's cries, and got curious.
Re: Anirune Forest

Through the underbrush of Anirune Forest, two figures watched Grumpy approach Magdelene. Their grey skin was covered in dark tattoos and markings, swirling patterns that seemed to make them blend into their surroundings. They grasped bows and each carried a quiver of barbed arrows, as well as cruelly-hooked knives, held on belts. They wore little more than loincloths and sandals, but this only seemed to help them move slowly, quickly and silently though the forest floor.

The pair turned to regard each other, one nodding, and the two began to skulk away from the pair. Not far away, a group of similar humanoids crouched in the undergrowth, virtually invisible. The largest of them was at the front, covered in markings and piercings that looked even more horrific and painful than those the other creatures sported. It wore half a skull as a mask, which obscured the top half of his face, and he carried a long staff that looked as though it had been made from a human spine.

The two creatures that had been watching Grumpy and Magdelene approached the group and motioned for them to follow. Together, the mysterious group closed in upon on the two unsuspecting travellers, as they had done so many times before, silent, invisible, undetected.

A strange group of grey-skinned, tattooed tribesman have have the commotion, and are beginning to surround Grumpy and Magdelene.

OOC: Just something Megane and I cooked up. We figured we might as well make the character's arrival exciting...
Re: Anirune Forest

”Could I suggest that you stop shouting? I don’t know if this forest is any friendlier than it was when I was last here, but I seriously doubt it.”

Magdelene flinched in fright as the unexpected voice sounded from somewhere behind her, and she instantly spun around to face a rather unemotional looking man emerging from the underbrush not too far away. "I-I'm so sorry," She apologised timidly though she discreetly kept her guard by holding her magical staff close to her body.

Carefully, she eyed the stranger. Magdelene had never seen such a man before, for he was very different to the warlocks she was used to at home. Dangerous or no? She thought to herself.

"Are you a native...?" asked Magdelene, "You said this forest wasn't friendly. What exactly did you mean...?"

She looked around worriedly and thought she had seen something move in her peripheral vision but when Magdelene looked closer, there was nothing there. She shuddered in fear.

Meanwhile, unbeknownst to the two, the grey tribesmen edged closer, steadying their grip on their sharpened weapons and awaited for an opportune moment to strike their prey.

Summary: Magdelene enquires Grumpy about himself and Anirune Forest's dangers. The grey tribes men stalk ever closer to their intended target.
Re: Anirune Forest

Vay spun round to look in the direction the outs where coming from, “Geu'La!”* he souted glancing around for a place to hide, or to lay an ambush. He looked at Megane, his nostrils flarinf smellign for the telltale pheromones of deceit, “Do you serve the emperium human?” how could he have been so stupid, even the “Geu'vesa”** couldn't be trusted for longer than it was convenient to them. In a flash his rifle was in his hands and pointed at Megane.


**Humans living in the tau empire
Re: Anirune Forest


"Not a native, no," I reply to the woman with a quick smile, noting her staff that she keeps clutched close to her, "I haven’t come to this World in a very long time. And no, this forest isn’t exactly home to lots of warm, cuddly woodland creatures--"

My eyes catch a sudden movement in the underbrush, and without hesitation I draw one of my Colts and level it at the spot I saw the flicker of motion, scanning the surrounding area for movement. I note that the woman has noticed something as well, judging by the way she is watching our surroundings.

Attempting to scan the immediate area for life-signs with my mind, I find nothing unusual; just animals and insects. But there’s something here with us, of that I’m almost positive; something capable of hiding itself through magic, and that worries me just a little bit. I wasn’t expecting to find myself in a fight this quickly in Iwaku.

Glancing over at the woman, I motion with my head to the trees around us. "I’m getting the feeling that we’re not alone. How about you?" Holstering my pistol, I bring my staff Iratze into a ready position, watching the trees and bushes around me for any signs of movement. My eyes begin to glow a pale blue as I draw upon the energies from Undeath, ready to start firing spells at anything that looks vaguely unfriendly.

Grumpy replies to Magdelene, only to spot something moving in the trees at the same time as her, but cannot detect any lifesigns that would suggest a creature that was about to attack them. Asking what she saw, Grumpy readies his magic in preparation for a fight.
Re: Anirune Forest

The creature began to be suspicious of megane-kun and began sniffing around. Megane-kun was clueless as to the sudden shift in mood. But it seems that the creature thought that he was out to get him.

Geu'La!” the creature shouted as he began looking around for a place to hide.

Megane-kun wondered why the creature didn't run away from him, but this was answered the very next moment as the creature's rifle was pointed at him.

Do you serve the emperium human?” the creature asked.

"Huh? What are you saying now?" megane-kun asked in return, hoping that the creature would make more sense. "To be honest, I don't know, I can't remember anything beyond being in this forest" he explained, "I don't know of any emperium, nor do I remember serving any such emperium." As he spoke, he looked directly into the eyes of the creature, in any case that the creature can actually read eyes.

vay, alerted by the shouts, became wary of megane-kun and at rifle-point, asked him if he belonged to the emperium.
Re: Anirune Forest

“The emperium of man!” Vay shouted at Megane, he couldn't believe a human could live and not know about it. He relaxed a little, not seeing deceit in him, nor smelling it in the air. Besides he had come here under equally mysterious circumstances. He came do the decision to trust the human, at least for now, and lowered his rifle.”So you do not know the name of this planet either Geu'vessa” he said, before turning away, “And I offer apologies, most Geu'la are my enemy, umm.. Humans.” he did not know how he had come to know this language, and it puzzled him. He looked at Megane again, he looked young and didn't have the build of a fighter, he looked lost and almost helpless, like he Vay could just kill him here and erect his body as a tribute to...

“AAAAHH” Vay shouted flinching. Him rifle dropped to the ground as his clawed hands flew to either side of his head. He staggered forward, but the pain passed and he regained his balance.
Re: Anirune Forest

The emperium of man!” the creature shouted, as if that is something that everybody should know about.

The creature sniffed megane-kun a little bit more, and for some reason, relaxed his stance and lowered his rifle. Wether megane-kun should see this as a good sign or not is still debatable, but in a dangerous situation such as this, a little caution is always recommended.

So you do not know the name of this planet either Geu'vessa” the creature asked before turning away, and without waiting for an answer, went on, "And I offer apologies, most Geu'la are my enemy, umm.. Humans.

"Hmm, actually," megane-kun said softly as the creature now examined him, "I don't know if that is something I should know about..."

"Uh.. are you ok?" megane-kun blurted as the creature started flinching. Megane-kun was bewildered as he watched the rifle drop to the ground. "AAAAHH” the creature shouted, grabbing his head with his clawed hands.

"No, he is certainly not ok." a voice within megane-kun told him, "do you think he's ok if he seems to be having a severe headache?"

Without even another thought, megane-kun moved closer to the creature, putting his arms around its shoulders. "Are you ok?" megane-kun asked for the second time, despite being quite sure that the creature's not ok.

sensing no malice in megane-kun, vay decided to trust him for the time being. however, vay started to flinch and seemed to suffer a splitting headache. megane-kun moved closer and tried to confirm if vay is doing ok.
Re: Anirune Forest

Vays first instinct was to swipe at Megane but he stopped himself and balled his fingers into a tight fist, his claws pressing into his palm helping him focus away from the lingering pain in his head and the impulse strike out at the human who seemed to genuinely care for his well being. “I'm alright.” he said, opening his eyes. He looked at the face before him, a far cry from the fierce looks of commissars, or the grim determination of guardsmen who knew they would die on the line. He did not recognize the expression on his face, except for the one time he visited a Geu'vessa settlement. Up until now he had assumed it was a look of fellowship reserved for other humans and a he returned it with a look of puzzlement.

He understood however that this human was showing empathy, and he had to honor
him for that. “Thank you...” he hesitated, this human didn't look like a warrior, and he didn't know quite what to call him. “Thank you lost one.” he said finally, even though the title suited them both.
<hr />
Vay recovers and is at first confused by Meg's empathy but thanks him.
Re: Anirune Forest

The creature glanced at megane-kun. For a split second, the creature's eyes were fierce, and raw fear shot thru megane-kun's body. He tried to understand what was going on in the mind of the creature, but his mind was paralyzed by fear, and his body prepared for what seemed to be an inevitable blow.

Instead of delivering a quick, and definitely fatal blow to megane-kun, the creature stopped himself, closed its eyes and balled its fingers into a tight fist. It is as if the creature is fighting against something. Its innate viciousness perhaps.

Megane-kun couldn't decide whether to back-off, or to further comfort the creature. He wasn't sure if he's making things better for the creature, or making things worse for it. Frozen by indecision, megane-kun didn't move, his arms still wrapped around the creature's shoulders.

"Come what may...." he thought as he tried to keep his arms from trembling. Closing his eyes, and taking in a deep breath, he whispered to the creature, "It will be alright."

After what seemed to be a long time, the creature finally opened its eyes and spoke. “I'm alright.” it said, with a voice that seemed to have been exhausted.

The creature looked up to him with a now entirely different expression on its face. The creature seemed to be puzzled. "Hey, don't look at me like that!" megane-kun thought as he tried to comprehend what's going on.

Thank you...” the creature said as it straightened up, “Thank you lost one.

"I think I didn't do anything worthy of thanks," megane-kun said, smiling, "And also, I don't remember being named 'lost one.'" Megane-kun let out a soft laughter with that last statement.

"Anyways, I think it would not be a very good name for me, at least I don't think so, no matter how fitting it might be." he went on, taking a handkerchief from his pocket and wiping off his forehead. His hands hit the eyeglasses and it almost fell. Adjusting them, megane-kun seemed to have remembered something. "I guess you can call me megane-kun, how about you? What's your name?"

vay recovered from what seemed to be an episode of migraine, and was confused by megane-kun's show of empathy. megane-kun introduced himself and asked for vay's name.
Re: Anirune Forest

At Megane’s laughter Vay tilted his head. “What a curios sound.” He thought to himself. “I am called Vay, as I am too young to have any other name.” he bowed slightly when he introduced himself, dipping his head. His right hand balled loosely and slammed into his chest as a sign of respect and strength. “Have you seen any kroot since your arrival here, I am separated from my kin.”
Re: Anirune Forest

The creature tilted his head and spoke. "I am called Vay, as I am too young to have any other name." the creature said as he bowed slightly, dipping his head and his right hand balled loosely and slammed into his chest. Megane-kun, thinking that it was some sort of greeting amongst the creatures, mimiced Vay. The two were locked in a mutual bow, with neither wanting to be the first to straighten up.

Megane-kun glanced at Vay from time to time, checking to see if Vay had straightened up first, but no, Vay still maintained perfect form. The deadlock would have lasted longer if not for megane-kun's back, which ached and prompted megane-kun to straighten up.

After the mutual bow, Vay asked, "Have you seen any kroot since your arrival here, I am separated from my kin."

Megane-kun thought for a moment, searching his memory for any encounters with creatures similar to Vay. "I'm sorry, but no, I don't believe I have encountered any creatures of your kind," megane-kun said.

"Wait, you're a creature aren't you?" megane-kun said after a long pause. "You seem to be too human and intelligent to be called a creature."

There was a silence between the two of them after that last statement. A long akward silence. "Uhm... Anyways," megane-kun said, "I think I should join you in looking for the others, who knows what might happen to you if your headache strikes you again."
Re: Anirune Forest

Too human! The phrase lodged in Vay's head, He had supposed 'creature had meant 'Gue' or simply alien. But to be compared like humans where the very of sentience, but seeing as this one had never seen a kroot before, or not that he could remember... “Those there might know, or perhaps cam give us directions.” he pointed in the general direction that the shouting had come from. He completely ignored the subject of his headaches, his pride not leeting him acknowledge something that both made him weak, and affected his mind.
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