The Prophecy

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Boss Frost

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In the home of elves and men,
In devil's lair and angel's den,
Lies six who hold the key,
To break the evil such as He.

Rivermar was quiet. This was no surprise to anyone living there, since the silence of the surrounding woods was what attracted the elves to it in the first place. It was serene, with the very faint aura of magic that came with such a settlement. Even the ruins of the original homes had a sort of stately feel to them, vined-over gods of a long time ago. Though not so long ago: the utter destruction that was forced upon this area was merely a human generation ago.

Six individuals 'who hold the key'. The prophecy had been clear about them: Each one had a mark elevating them above their fellow mortals. It made them strong. Raised in delicate care or taken from the outside world to Rivermar, the Six proved worthy of their names.

The clever magics of Kallus, both a pleasure and a burden on the elves. The dark wildness of Seth, akin to the training of the elves - though still a natural-born soul in the wild. The massive Vishal, nicknamed "Titan" by the elves - though never to the primal being's face. The glorious Eylssa and her magic - before her, divine magic had been thought lost. The sad tale of Ronan, his role as a 'vessel' and strange religion discomforting to the elves, leaving the man to his own devices. Finally, the foreign Chiyome, slippery as her element and just as beautiful.

What little craftsmen the small settlement had worked to create items worthy of the Six. Though the devils that came to aid them, courtesy of Bel, refused to give up any of their hard-earned gold and items without souls in return, the divine individuals borrowed from the celestial hebdomand were willing to part with a few items, gold, and secrets - all they could afford.

Equipped, trained to the extent they could be, the Six and a few of their friends gathered in the meeting room. The Council of Beasts, a group of six of the eldest elves, were to preside over the meeting. Only one had survived the attack from the balor King Kazai. Originally the youngest of the council, he now wore the owl-mask of his ultimate superior: as the eldest elf now in existence. The tall man walked around the illusory globe of the planet, and of the small globes that were the other planes of existence. His brown-grey robes rustled faintly. He was still young enough that they silver hair of the elder elves had not yet settled upon his head. He had taken to being called by his status: "Owl".

When he spoke, it was clear as mountain air, "We... are the last surviving settlement of mortals. We know that, now." He moved by the five masks of his predecessors: running his hands over the masks of Fox, Wolf, Raven, Stag, and Rabbit. "You're the Prophecied Six..." He looked towards the others, "...and Friends." Bowing his head to each in turn he finally moved back to the map. "It won't be long until King Kazai turns his army back around and slaughters us. We would have little defense against that as we are now. However - "

He pressed his finger against the map, eight dots appearing upon them. "There are eight settlements that King Kazai has been using as fortresses: bases, used to replenish his army. If we - you - were to take them out, he would not be able to call upon those resources during the battle. This would make him a great deal easier to beat. Once he falls, the rest of the bases he has placed throughout the world will be of no consequence. My elves, and the remaining angels and devils -will slaughter them once Kazai is done for."

"These areas... you might know them. You will choose which ones you wish to go towards. Each will be guarded, of course... Kazai has placed one of his Lieutenants in each... folks possessed by a demon." He points them out in turn:

"Whitewall. Ronan's birth city. Kazai fell upon it shortly after your victory. Kazai has been using the place as a power siphon: sending the souls of the dead to fuel the magical abilities of his forces. If you defeat this lieutenant, his spellcasters will be crippled."

"Ghostmarsh. A swamp originally populated by undead, Kazai took offense to their 'cheating death' and fell upon the area. He left the area quickly, though what few demons remain there scour the swamp for the relics of the powerful, evil undead casters. Taking out the lieutenant here will prevent them from using these devices against you."

"Mt. Perrier. Once holding the greatest temple of Ehlonna in the land, the mountain and all of it's life was reversed - even aided by the Blighters, which he fell upon and slaughtered soon afterward. If we slay the lieutenant there we might be able to recover some of the life energy to the land, speeding the recovery of mortals."

"Garm. Ti-... er, Vishal's home city. Originally kept by a giant wolf spirit, the town and all it's occupants were slain. The possessing demons of Kazai's forces soaked into the land, corrupting the large wolf packs that the forces of Kazai now use as mounts. Slaying the lieutenant here will severely cripple Kazai's cavalry."

"The Maw. A huge cavern complex, containing a portal into the Underdark, which Kazai has converted into a portal right to the Abyss. Slaying the lieutenant here will make it harder for him to receive reinforcements... though as demons, they can summon their allies from Abyss anyway. Maybe if we convert it to another sort of portal, we could get our own allies?"

"Nolava. Believe it or not, a full-on attack is happening right now. A small band of arcane casters - the Children of Boccob - claimed to be a neutral party. When Kazai attacked them, they were unprepared... but they're still powerful arcane casters. Their golems and magic have kept the demons at bay in siege... if the lieutenant is slain here, it will rout the demons. Perhaps the Children of Boccob will take a side, now."

"Skullholme. A mountain opposite Mt. Perrier. It was originally the home of a red dragon brood, who kept to their own devices. Kazai fell upon the mountain and has begun to use the dragons as aerial mounts and... if our spies are correct, breeding stock. Half-dragon demons and half-demon dragons are bad, demons mounted on dragons in the same battlefield as them are even worse. Get in there and do some damage."

"Lakeshore. A small, quiet town nearby. Or at least, we thought it was. The place was actually quite full of worshippers of the demon lord Dagon. When Kazai fell upon the town, he was surprised to be welcomed... and the people of the town not mortal at all. There is a shrine at the bottom of the lake, housing a great deal of horrible monsters. There, they manufacture horrible diseases, magic spells, and other forms of warfare only the demon-tainted could imagine... kill the lieutenant there, and we won't be massively slaughtered before Kazai even arrives."

He turns to them. "There they all are. I will leave the planning up to you, and I will offer my resources. Our troops shall have to stay here to defend Rivermar, so you'll be on your own, but we may still have items that would be useful to you...?"
Ronan looked at the strange band that had formulated. He was an outsider, the pale stranger from the North, but he knew that they were united in a common goal - defeat the demon Kazai and restore the land. They were also members of the prophecy - chosen ones, as some would say. The druids and sisterhood in his homeland would have said that Ronan's prophecy was something different than these Southerners made it out to be. He was the Dieseach. The vessel for his gods, but they called him the tough hero, the hero of protection and stability. He wasn't sure it that was true.

He shifted in his armor uncomfortably when he was pointed at, and bowed his head. The memory of the destruction of his homeland made him feel negative emotions. It made him feel unsteady, which was exactly what he was supposed to not be. He was supposed to be unshakable. He remembered the battle-torn field, the summer grass and moss sopping crimson - the grey cold fog hanging in the air as the black silhouettes of demons marched ever-nearer. He swallowed, and closed his tawny eyes, and opened them again. His face was stony. He didn't want to think in the past. It made him angry, and The Unspoken frowned upon a vessel filled with rage. Ronan shook his hair a bit, getting it out of his eyes.

His gauntleted hand went straight to the hilt of his sword. A longsword by the name of Gwaingalonn - a sword that Ronan knew would be a key implement in the destruction of the demon. His hand tightened on the hilt, and the sword gave him comfort. It was one of the last remnants of his homeland. He nodded towards the elder, standing up straight, showing off his full height.
"Thank you," He said politely, "But I have my sword and my armor. That's all I need. I will ask, is there a temple to the Unspoken here? Or the Old Gods as I have heard them called in the South?" His accent was strange, like every sound in the word was pronounced hard, sharp, "I would like to pray before I proceed further." He smiled benignly, "If you do not have a chapel to my deities, a nearby druid grove would serve me well."
Opposite Ronan was the mass of fur and muscle, looking very much like the creature he was supposed to be. The Mark of Strength seared hot, clearly visible as a red glow through even his chestplate. He certainly felt it, too: a smile crossed his face as he looked upon the map. His arms had been folded across his tight chest as the elven man spoke, and when he finished, the ex-human rose a hand to scratch at his own chin - his fur itched there most of all. He had long ago grown out of his rages, once folks learned that they were brought forth by physical pain. Still, a few of the shattered remains of houses hadn't come from Kazai at all, but the huge wolfman in his youth.

He considered it, and when he spoke, the sound rumbled in his chest: sounds of growls, barks and howls echoing in the back of his speech... Like a pack of wolves in his heart, scrambling to exit through his mouth but unable to escape the man's barrel chest. "I do better in combat (grr) the more combatants there are. I (ruff) think we can leave The Maw as it is. Taking down Lakeshire might be (arruuu~) the best first goal... Or taking down some of Kazai's special units." He points out Whitewall, Garm, and Skullholme.

Looking to Ronan, Vishal tilted his head. There was a strange man, but he was tough. Maybe a bit too sentimental about things than a warrior should be, but he was still a warrior. They all were, in Vishal's eyes. He smiled - not so comforting, as his teeth were the length of a man's hand. "Think the Old Faith could give us an advatage...? (Arrou~?) Guess we need all the advantage we can get. I think there's a (grrr) Druid circle next to Ehlonna's shrine." Vishal actually remembered it well. The Druids there tried to figure out why he was mutating, and when they failed, they tried to change him back into a human. He injured three of them, he remembered as his ears folded backward - feelif bad about his destructive temper. "Though you might want to stick around (grrr), comraderie to your allies is more pressing than the council of gods that already favor you. Stick around. You can pray when the tactics are done."
Sitting a few chairs away from Kallus, Keira was silently displeased with being seated so far away from her lover. He said something about keeping a clear mind or something but... Oh Keira. Let it go. She sighed, he would get it later.

She paid attention to Owlly as he did his tiresome rundown of what they had to do. Oh Owlly, get flustered why don't 'cha? Too bad the others died so early, you weren't quite ready to take the mantle of leadership just yet.

But, she had to admit, the illusion was really cool. It showed where Rivermar was and where the other places were... Maybe...

"Owlly. Do we have anything on the left-tendents of each place? And how much of an army is in each place? The places and what they would do for us helps but we need to know a bit more than that to make sure we don't all die. That would mess with the tale wouldn't it?" She gave him a look that said he should have thought of that before.

"Anything else? Kallus?" She looked at him, wanted to know if he approved.
Owl shakes his head, "Unfortunately, we have no information on the inside of the fortresses, or the lieutenants. All of our elven spies have either been killed or possessed. Even one of our diviners had her mind's eye burnt out just attempting to scry upon Mt. Perrier." He walked around the map, looking upon Keira. "As the legendary heroes, I have complete faith in you." He nods, giving them a genuine smile, "I also trust that you prophesied heroes will keep your more mortal friends safe." He didn't seem to mind being called 'Owlly', continuing with the conversation.

Vishal grins, leaning against a wall and patting the gigantic sword laying against the same wall, "You hear that? (Grrr!) We've got the complete faith of the elven elders... Hey, I've got full confidence in our abilities as well... Granted, I sort of feel that we could just send Eylssa and Chiyome!" Originally, the man had been distrustful of magic, after being slammed around by an elven wizard who's tower he had been destroying during a rage. However, after getting to know the power of magic, he had gained a great deal of faith in the two other Marked characters... the strength of magic had begun to impress him a great deal.

"Sending the rest of us in there is pretty much just overkill!" He throws his head back in laughter, the baying of a pack of wolves accompanying the sound. "A bunch of demons (Woof!) is nothing compared to our might." He flexes his muscles, patting the massive bulge upon his arm and continuing, "Even with this weird body (Grrr) I've got, I'm still damn strong. With 'Ferocious Archon' here, Ronan and Seth, we've got the battle all set. Unless you're planning on (Arrou~) going in there and talking to the lot of them!"
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Aidan stood in the back of the space, his green eyes wandering about the intricate chamber, not really concentrating on anything in particular. Though a Cleric, he hardly looked anything like a priest or holy warrior. He was dressed in dark leathers that hung from his shoulders like a long coat, and a once-shimmering shirt of Mithral that he had since dulled and dirtied with dirt and mud could be made out underneath the heavy coat. At one hip dangled a hand-and-a-half sword with an intricate blue-dyed leather hilt, the pommel a rich-looking silver bird in flight. The sword's name was, simply, 'Sparrow'. At the other hip dangled a small silver plate, a buckler in which he could tuck his clenched fist. He looked more a Rogue than anything else! But what else was a follower of Olidammara, the God of Luck and Fortune, if not a rogue?

He heard the words spoken by the Elven council. Six in all, they titled and fashioned themselves after beasts. Aidan had always thought it a silly tradition, but he didn't make a habit of insulting one's beliefs and culture, especially that of those who had took him in when he was but a youth of no more than fourteen winters. They had done well by him, and his companion Elyssa, though more for her than him. He had received martial training, and had gotten long well-enough with the soldier-types, but the upper echelon of people with power had little time with him, and all the time in the world for the Marked Ones, the Ones of the Prophecy.

Aidan was just a tag-alonger.

It didn't bother him. At least, he told himself it didn't. He had Elyssa, for all that was worth, even if she hadn't looked his way in many weeks. It irked him, but she knew she was safe, and would be safe. Aidan had no intention of letting her off on this journey on her own. So, as Owl had noticed, he was now, "... and Friends." The words echoed in his mind with only the tiniest hint of bitter sarcasm.

Words from the Marked Ones piqued his interest, as they were all queried to the tactical situation at hand. Aidan took several steps and stood near-to Elyssa, but kept his gaze from her. He wondered if she was cross at him for his last bout of drunken reverie, just several days ago?

"I think we should hit Lakeshore first. It is close, and no doubt the people will be appreciative. We can knock out this well of monsters they have billeted, and take out their alchemical stores, as well. It is the clearest move for us. From there..."

Aidan shrugged. He wondered if anyone was even bothering to listen to him?

"Nolava, perhaps; save those Children. More allies, yes? They'll no doubt be indebted towards us if we arrive to relieve them before King Kazai's siege is a success. It will be a success, after all. We all know this. We've all seen his... successes."

Aidan gave a sigh. It was a familiar sigh of sorrow and deep, haunted memories; they all were familiar with this sound, for they had heard it and shed something near-enough to it over the years.
Kallus' eyes met Keira's and he smiled briefly before turning back to the meeting. "Lakeshore is the obvious first target, safeguard our numbers here from Kazai's less conventional methods and kill his allies while we still have surprise on out side." he looked to Aidan who had been the first to suggest it glad someone here had strategic sense, tactical sense on the other hand remained to be seen.

"Once we're there though talking to them might not be such a bad idea, see what we can learn where spies and magic has failed. Not that I think we can persuade them to leave Kazai's side but I'ts better than charging in blindly." he looked to Vishal as he says this aware the fighter would likely object to exchanging words instead of blows.

"We will kill them, I'd just like the chance to learn what I can from them before we do."
By the archway of the meeting hall, framed by blossom trees and the tumbling backdrop of waterfalls, a man had one foot in the chamber and one foot in the wilderness. In his hands, a shoulder of roasted meat from which he cut slices - one for himself, then one for the slavering dog that sat looking up at him.

"Your own allies cannot stand your voice, Kallus. Open your mouth in Lakeshore and see what happens."

He dropped another morsel towards the dog. It leapt up, closed its jaws around the meat, then landed with its eyes still on its master. Crayden had a layer of dirt that all the streams of Rivermar could not wash from his skin, and his eyes, lazy and forest green, shone out from the grime as he turned his gaze into the chamber. The ranger's voice was scratchy, lost beneath layers of a wilder solitude. "Guerilla war then. We kill them quick. We take their poisons and their magics. We move on."

He took a mouthful of meat and threw a half-smile to the Aasimar, the latest recruit whose arrival had accelerated their preparations. Another holy drone - just what they needed. Perhaps he and the Wolf would become an item like the other two couples and then the whole goddam mission would be compromised by relationships and loyalties. Never had the Ranger travelled with such a parade of demon-bait. These lovers and nostalgics would be played like pipes.

Crayden turned away when he caught a glimpse of the masked elders, hiding his shiver as he cut again into the meat. "We'll travel light. No horses. Kill anything that sees us. Take from what we kill."

He flung the bone into the orchard, sending his dog into a frenzied chase.
Ronan glanced at Kallus and laughed grimly, "Talking to them? You think talking to a demon is a good idea?" He snorted, and folded his arms across his chest, with the clink of metal meeting metal. His face was drawn- losing an openess that it had had before. It was tight, condensed, and absolutely impassable in regards to this particular point, "Demons are not like devils. You can speak to a devil. Devil's, to their credit, at least have some sort of honour," He ran a hand through his thick flaxen hair, "Demons do not. Demons destroy and move on. They do not talk." He looked at the map and traced his hand over Whitewall. Home.

"I suggest we start with the alchemical warfare in Lakeshore,"
He pointed his hand there, and then traced it to Nolava, "Then I suggest we gather allies in the Followers of Boccob, " He bit his lip, and then tapped his homeland, the wintery Whitewall, "And then, I suggest we gogo for a frontal assault on Whitewall. Not only will his spell-casters be crippled, but it's also my home. And before the Horde came, I promised my father that I would protect the realm until his heirs came of age. That it a promise that I intend to fulfill."
Aidan sighed and brought his head back up, looking over the map once more. The Paladin was steadfast in his determination to liberate his home, Whitewall. There was a certain degree of wisdom there; perhaps they could find allies, and they would cripple King Kazai's sorcerers. No doubt, it was strategically sound.

But there were so many other targets, and not enough time!

Dragons, ancient and powerful artifacts, undead wolfpacks... A slight shiver went through Aidan then. He was skilled, able in a blade and wise in the few chants of his god, but things like half-demon dragons sent a chill up his spine.

"Crayden has the idea of it," he said, acknowledging the curt Ranger that had skirted the edge of their meeting just as he had. "Knock 'em out fast, take what we can, and move on. We'll be able to cover ground much quicker if we stay off the roads, anyways.

And no horses. No. Horses."

His eyes suddenly shot up to Elyssa, not several paces from him now. He wondered if she had anything to say? Her Faith had guided them both, once, to this safety of Rivermar. Perhaps it would give her some significant strategic insight? He smirked then, shaking his head without mirth. Faith, and strategy, indeed!
"You the only one with a father now, holy man?" Crayden licked his blade as he eyed the Aasimar. "How about my kin beyond the Ghostmarsh, or Vishal's home, or the wasteland Aidan crawled out of? You think cos you made a promise that entitles you to something?"

The ranger's dog came bounding back into the chamber and dropped the bone with a hollow clatter, tail wagging furiously. It waited for its master to throw it again, but its master was otherwise engaged. "I said guerilla war. Not a frontal assault on a city full of spellcasters. Die a fool's death on your own time."

His eyes shifted away again, having caught another glimpse of the masked elders. Hiding his shudder, Crayden leant against the archway and slowly sheathed his knife. "I'll tell you what step two is. We find us a weapon at Lakeshore - the worst one we can - and we use it against the biggest and weakest target. That's how we'll bleed the Balor."
Keira sighed at Crayden's stuborness. He really didn't get it did he? Crayden the quick, not so quick is he?

"We can't afford to waste time. Hitting them and running back works if we have a lot of time but that is something we don't have. We need to kill the leaders of the areas as soon as possible. Thats why we need to save the Children first. They can provide a distraction while we take out the leader at Lakeshore. Then we can burn everything down since, for all we know, the biggest baddest weapon might be one that would heal the armies. Best to just burn the stuff down and make sure no one uses it."
Owl shakes his head, "Actually, I'm going to ask you to destroy alchemical weapons you locate within Lakeshore." He gestures, "As demons, they are quite immune to poisons and diseases, making their use against the mortal races tactically sound: they can use them wantonly without damaging their own forces. As well, any magic you uncover there will likely be dripped in evil. Thus, quite useless to any of you." He shrugs, "However, slaughtering the lot of them will prevent it from being used against us, which is just as nice."

Vishal turned his head, offering a grin in the direction of Crayden. "Hello, Sunshine! (Ruff!) Glad you could make it." He turned, letting the others decide where to go, "As long as I can add to my kill count, I'm gonna (Woof!) be a happy man." He tilts his head back in another laugh, "Forget the magic! We'll send Crayden in, he can start killing them with his attitude, and I'll back him up with my blade! Wahahahah!"

He stepped over, "But really, that hole... killing things and running away? Sounds a little... (Grrr)." He gestures at himself, "Sounds like a bit too much energy. We should just assault something. Kill everything that looks remotely harmful, then come back. If we do it fast, (pantpantpant), we can handle it no problem! Maybe a few casualties, but hey - that's war. They won't be casualties for any of us, yeah?" He shrugs, gigantic shoulders causing his mithril chain to jingle.
"Maybe for you Wolfy, but not for the rest of us who are not fortunate enough to be marked..."

She thought for a moment before getting up and walking to Kallus, whispering 'What do you think about Wolfy and the others creating a diversion while some of us go to assassinate the leader? Would that work?' She waited for his answer. Some of the others wouldn't like it... Boo them. It was an idea.
The Ranger's eyes followed the gestures of Vishal, the whispering of the half-elves, the muttering of the elders.

"I said nothing of running away!" Crayden snapped. "I spoke of killing them and moving to the next target. We sit around making friends and collecting trophies, Kazai has us on a plate! Are my words too long for you fucking idiots?"

His part in the meeting was over. Crayden would follow them and bleed by their sides. But he had better things to do than be lectured on how best to slay a beast.

Turning, the Ranger moved away down the steps and into the orchard, ducking past the hanging branches as his stride kicked up a rain of blossoms. The sounds of the council were lost beneath the roar of waterfalls and Elfsong, and he did not look back. The dog moved with him, carrying the bone and dropping it by the old oak tree where its master stopped to sit. With his back against the trunk, Crayden set to his blade with a whetstone, sharpening the edge in slow and rhythmic scrapes.

And behind his scowl, a storm was raging.

The prophecy had been given to him that morning, by a maiden at the Gladwallow Brook.

He would die upon this journey.
Destroy to protect.

Place everything you have left on the heads of six (and "friends") and hope.

These were just a couple of the thoughts the woman still seated in her chair entertained as she listened to them discuss things back and forth. It appeared to be more a debate about tactics than where to go, even if it started out that way. They were just as likely to die at Mt. Perrier as they were to die at Ghostmarsh. She was thinking along the lines of helping the prisoners the demons were currently keeping, the dragons and the wolves, and the Children of Boccob being attacked. She admitted to herself the latter was also for selfish reasons. She was always willing to learn new magic. She suppressed a shudder at the thought of being possessed, being forced to do things--No touching that shackle! ... But was the point of it all if they were struck down by chemical warfare?

"I vote our first target to be Lakeshore," she said to no one in particular and to anyone who was listening. When she died, she wished to see the face of the one responsible. All the better to avenge herself later. Chemical warfare was an ingenius way of conducting warfare. You inflicted pain and damage on your enemies without sacrificing your own forces, having to supply those forces or wasting time travelling. The enemy wouldn't see it coming and chances were, would not have time to mount a defense. It was also irreponsible and stupid. War was a serioius matter. Chemical warfare turned it into something even a child could do and that meant a loss of control, senseless destruction, potentially irreversible damage.
Elyssa raised her eyes to each of the present members as they spoke, with the exception of Aidan. Her anger at him through the first little bit was caused by his apparent levity in face of the danger that would become part of their lives soon enough. His presence though at this council, sage opinion and fighting for what he thought was right. This was the Aidan that she remembered. The timbre to his voice belied a little bit of hesitance though and he shook a bit behind her in his affirmation that there be no horses. Elyssa could agree with that.

Elyssa reached a hand behind her and squeezed Aidan's hand gently before she opened her mouth to speak, eyes hidden beneath the shadow of her white hood. A single tendril of wispy hair trailed from beneath the dark emptiness provided by the hood. She had no desire to don her plate yet before they had left and be unnecessarily weighted down, thus she wore a long white robe that concealed her within it and the hood pulled low to shadow her face.

"I believe that the priority is to Lakeshore's dissemination of power. These dark powers will threaten our forces as they have never been tested. At least, should we fail to destroy the centers of the specialized fighting units, we can fight. We cannot combat the proliferation of unholy disease."
Kallus ground his teeth. "Debate gets us nowhere." he said "Lakeshore is the obvious target, then as the ranger said we keep moving and never let them know where we'll hit next." he took a breath growing inpatient with this council meeting. This group would need a leader but it would not be him. "The mages, if we save them could better be used here. One out our greatest strengths is going to be the small size of our force. We have speed, stealth and mobility, we should use it."

He knew he had just disagreed with Keira and knew what she'd think of it but he'd deal with that after the meeting.
The tall paladin shrugged, "I care very little where we go, as long as it brings us closer to Kazai," He smiled a bit grimly, but it was a real smile, that reached his eyes, "My sword has an appointment with his throat," He ran his hand over the map, glancing at the way they would have to go to get to Lakeshore. He didn't know the Southern geography very well, and thus, the map- markers were rather alien to him. He shrugged his shoulders again, with the clank of metal and chain. He had been a bit taken aback by Crayden's comments, but he realized the ranger was right. He couldn't put his honour and his revenge above his duty to the group.

He glanced at his companions, examining the chipper wolf creature in particular, with his gold eyes. His mirth and good humour would probably ease the trials of the days ahead. Ronan had no allusions that this voyage would be easy. Not easy in the slightest. He bowed his head to the elven leader, Owl, and said in his tongue,
"Go raibh maith agat as an gcabhair a," and then repeated the phrase in common, "Thank you for the help. We'll head to Lakeshore and then make a tactical decision there."
Chiyome stood. Lakeshore it was then. Good. The sooner they destroyed the weapons and monsters there, the better. She'd have to read what she could of that place and select her spells accordingly. Then she could get the necessary supplies. She had learned the hard way, years ago, that ill preparation meant an all too close encounter with death. "There is one small matter of business I would like to bring up. I think it wise to get it settled as soon as possible. We need to choose a leader, either by vote or combat, it matters not to me. We do not know what lies ahead. I do not wish to have the choice made when we are under attack."
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