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    Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal

    Fraag
    Fraag

    Player 
    Lineage : Incarnata of Nine Souls
    Position : None
    Posts : 388
    Guild : Errings Rising
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 584,173

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Winter God Slayer
    Second Magic: Percipience of the Deep Atheneum
    Third Magic: Demiurge of Primal Matter

    Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal Empty Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal

    Post by Fraag on Wed 25 Dec - 19:34

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    Over and above the Royal Castle, the thunder roared as though it was the obedient spirit and dutiful harbinger of the vengeful storm which twisted and roiled the face of the heavens, unleashing a wild and unnatural fury on the lands beneath, the lands in which mortal creatures scurried about like rats, unaware of what the future held. For many today, the future held death, and yet these unfortunate fools neither understood, nor realized this. For this reason, mortal creatures were to be pitied. What was made even more maddening to consider was the fact that most of the mortals who would die today would do so majorly because they thought themselves safer than majority of their fellow dustlings, who, despite possessing the same blood, flesh, and sometimes skin color, were relegated to living more dangerous lives because of the simple fact that these unfortunate, death-branded mortal specimens were simply in possession of more money, more material possessions, with which they believed they deserved a safer life than their poorer fellows on the speck of rock known as Earthland. And interestingly, most people tended to forget that they were incessantly in danger, ever so soon to have their lives snuffed out without a warning’s notice. Those who lived constantly with this reminder were more likely to survive…

    …like the curious creature known as Beira. Obviously appearing as a human at first glance, her bloodline and heritage spanned across dimensions alien to ours, though people could argue that she was, for all intents and purposes, human. The being beside her could not be so favourably argued for. His breath, unnaturally warm and rank with the stench of sulphur, easily fogged the cool air before his face, as his gaze rested upon the same thing which Beira’s eyes were fixed on. Rakkul, they called him, and he was as gruesome in appearance as his companion was beautiful. His skin was red, and rough scales interrupted the natural contours of his form in many more than one place. From his forehead rose two horns which twisted backwards round each other to jut up about a foot high from the top of his head. A similar pair of horns, much smaller though, emanated from his jaw, as black as the midnight, and with a sheen like that of well fired ceramic. On his head were strands of green hair, or at least they could be called hair only because they grew on the same place most humans had hair on their heads. The strands were too few, too thick and too wiry to be similar to the natural growths on human heads, but since they corresponded to where hair grew, a descriptor’s suggestion that these were strands of hair would have to be forgiven. From the base of his spine emanated a long, thin tail, similar to that which was hosted on the posterior end of a cow, and from his knees downward, his legs were more akin to those of an ox than of a man. But if, because of his horns, hooves and tail, someone were to assume that he were related in some strange way, to a bovine creature, as of yet, bovines were not known to fly, and obviously did not possess wings. This creature did, immense and shaped like those of some gigantic infernal bat, though unlike the wings of the crepuscular mammal, they were covered in rough red scales. Another attribute of his that would quickly divest an observer of any assumptions that he was related in some way to a cow was his dentition. With teeth that looked much more comfortable with stripping raw flesh from bones than masticating lignin, this thing was nothing near related to a bull. He wore nothing but a crude loincloth, and held a black club in his clawed hand.

    This Rakkul stood to Beira’s right. On the left of the young God Slayer stood a short, withered figure, leaning on a cane and gazing into the distance, eyes unfixed on anything, as opposed to the other two. For all intents and purposes, this creature looked to be an old woman, maybe two hundred years old, if the number of wrinkles on her face was anything to go by. Everything about her was crooked, from her limbs, to her teeth, to her back, to her clothes, to the cane she held in her hand. And yet, for all the ancient ambience she seemed to possess, a preternatural power and vitality seemed trapped somewhere in that withered frame, making the appearance of senescence seem to be an illusion, as her movements, though appearing afflicted with the torpor of old age, were marked with sudden bursts of firmness and strength. Her eyes were almost closed what with the amount of wrinkles on her face, and her head was totally devoid of hair. She had what looked to be a contented smile on her face, as she stared off into the storm.

    Rakkul, for his part, was not at all content. ”We should be going ahead with the plan, Old One,” he snarled with impatience at the impassive form of the old woman standing across from Beira. The hag did not respond. Seeing as he was apparently ignored, the red demon turned his attention to the Utgardian. ”If your ‘mother’ will not respond to me, why don’t we have a little bit of fun, while we wait for her to reply?” Beira’s voice was laced with ill-concealed hatred, as she replied, ”watch your words with me, pitiful wretch, or I shall wring your head off from your neck before I drive your horns up somewhere the sun doesn’t shine, demon.”

    ”Empty words, human child,” laughed the demon. Before he could utter another word though, the cackling of the Old One caught the attentions of demon and damsel. ”Human?” the old woman cackled hoarsely. ”No, Rakkul, the child is as very much a creature of this world as you are.” The demon frowned in confusion, for he was certainly as much of this world as he could be stated to have relationship to a cow. ”This is interesting,” he said. ”What are you, maiden? An angel whose light has grown dark?” There was no reply.


    WC: 1039/7000

    Fraag
    Fraag

    Player 
    Lineage : Incarnata of Nine Souls
    Position : None
    Posts : 388
    Guild : Errings Rising
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 584,173

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Winter God Slayer
    Second Magic: Percipience of the Deep Atheneum
    Third Magic: Demiurge of Primal Matter

    Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal Empty Re: Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal

    Post by Fraag on Wed 25 Dec - 19:37

    Beira, for her part, was growing weary of bandying words with extraplanar creatures. She would rather the whole reason they were here had been concluded as soon as possible. She hated demons, not because she was, as Rakkul had asked, a fallen angel, but because her magic was tainted with something demonic, and it was this taint that had contributed to the destruction of her home, so so many long years ago. And yet, for her hatred of demons, she found herself having to cavort with such an infernal creature. Her consolation was that Rakkul was a means to an end, and nothing near an associate. If anything was a consolation to herself, it was that the demon would very likely not live to see the next morning. As for the Old One, the Utgardian was even more frightened of her. For this old woman was, if Beira’s dreams had been correct, one of the terrible ancient creatures whose meddling in the affairs of others had totally destroyed Utgardr. The Old Ones were believed to be beings of great power, and their motives were unknown. This one, if Beira could afford it, would have to die as well.

    The young God Slayer cast her mind back to a few days ago. She had woken up drenched in sweat and overcome by horror, thanks to a terribly vivid nightmare. In the dream, an indescribable monstrosity had attacked her, and while in the process of attempting to digest her, she came in contact with a strange, alien consciousness who told her to seek the Old One in the mountains. Of course, she had refused to do so, quite unwilling to run errands for some Eldbitch consciousness in the back of her mind. Besides, she didn’t like running errands. Those were for servants. Unfortunately for the young woman, the dream had come again and again, even seizing on her in her waking hours. Eventually, convinced that she was running mad, Beira decided to follow the directions of the foreign consciousness inside her head, and had made her way to a remote mountain range wherein she had come across the old crone who simply referred to herself as the Old One, and had been apparently expecting her. The old witch had informed Beira that another Old One, Uaggool by name, had promised to send some help along, and the help had come in the form of Beira.

    This was, to the young Utgardian, extremely disturbing. She knew that Uaggool was a dark god being worshipped by mindflayers, so long ago in the dark caverns beneath Utgardr. It had tried to take control of her body, on the same day Utgardr had been destroyed by dark elves, mindflayers and frost giants. However, in the only twist of fate Beira was grateful for, the demonic essence which had tainted her magic refused to allow Uaggool to mentally assimilate her consciousness, instead corrupting, and thus weakening it. At that moment, Beira was the one who assimilated the Old One Uaggool, gaining control of its powers. At this point, she had awakened in faraway Pergrande, with a vast number of indeterminate kilometers and years between herself and Utgardr. She had managed to survive and escape, traveling far before settling in Fiore, at which point she hoped to just move on with life and put her past behind her. It would seem, however, that the past of the young utgardian was not in the least bit eager to be allowed to rest. For some reason, despite assimilating Uaggool, Beira had not managed to kill the abomination, and it had regained some power within her mind, power enough to cause her sufficient mental distress to seek out a being she would most rather avoid, or kill, if she had the chance. The hag had informed her of a time vessel belonging to the Old Ones, which had been found in Fiore. She needed to get her old, twisted hands on the vessel, and Beira would help her do it. Every attempt by Beira to refuse was met with excruciating episodes of Uaggool and the witch cooperating to cause her mental pain. So the Utgardian had unwillingly acquiesced.

    She still did not know her relevance in this place; she was not quite aware of why she was here. The demon, his purpose she knew. He was an infernal captain, controlling lesser fiends and cultists. He and his host were the army. The army that would assail the Royal Castle. That was why they were here. To attack the castle, get the Old One time vessel, and leave. The demon had been promised the souls of the victims of the battle, and the greedy fool had readily agreed. Beira knew that attacking the Royal Castle was almost a fool’s errand, unless one had a really sizeable army. The demon’ army was large, but not enough to fight against all Fiore’s military might. Not nearly. Both Beira and the Old One knew this, so it was clear that the demon was just cannon fodder. What mattered was getting the time vessel, which some Fiorean had found and brought to the castle. Had the denizens of the castle known what it truly was, they would probably have secured it in a much safer place, hidden forever from the light of the world. Beira knew she had been tasked with creating an illusion to mask the demonic army’s approach, and she had so far done so. Soon, she would dispel her illusion, and the demons would attack the Royal Castle. But Beira was sure that if she was supposed to cast illusions and do nothing more, the old hag would have probably attempted to pull her soul out of her body and use her magic. That seemed to be the witch’s stock in trade, as was revealed by the few dwellers in the mountainous region wherein she had been found. No, there was some greater secret purpose than just being present to hide the army marching against the Royal Castle. Beira knew the whole purpose of the attack was just to get into the castle, take the time vessel, and leave, using the demons as sufficient distractions and allowing them to be eventually destroyed by the reinforcements that would no doubt come to aid the defenders of the Royal Castle.

    ”Attack!” croaked the witch.


    WC: 1059 words
    Total: 2098/7000

    Fraag
    Fraag

    Player 
    Lineage : Incarnata of Nine Souls
    Position : None
    Posts : 388
    Guild : Errings Rising
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 584,173

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Winter God Slayer
    Second Magic: Percipience of the Deep Atheneum
    Third Magic: Demiurge of Primal Matter

    Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal Empty Re: Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal

    Post by Fraag on Wed 25 Dec - 19:40

    At the hoarse command of the ancient crone, Beira quietly dispelled her illusion. The guards on the walls of the Royal Castle were quite alarmed to discover an army suddenly seeming to appear out of nowhere, and more frighteningly, quite close to the castle walls. If the Old One and her demonic army had been any closer, it would have been easier to spot them. However, with proper planning, and weather manipulation, thanks to the ancient hag, what would have normally been a sunny day was beset with a rather heavy storm which made visibility quite poor. So it was that the guards atop the battlements of the Royal Castle were suddenly assailed by Rakkul and his forces, who swarmed over the wall, their inhuman anatomies having very little challenges as far as scaling the walls of the castle were concerned. For a while the old crone watched the armies of demons scaling the walls, then she turned to Beira and said, ”You shall stay as close as possible to me, child.”

    ”Why don’t you ask me to carry you instead?” the Utgardian maiden quipped sarcastically, that being the only way she could calm her frazzled nerves. Beira had never liked being under any one’s control, much less one whose motives she could not discern, although she was almost certain the old witch was not interested in looking out for her well-being. The crone, whether she was amused or insulted, did not show it. ”It would be a waste of time and energy,” she replied with her characteristically hoarse voice. ”Besides, I don’t like you touching me.” Beira rolled her eyes. ”We’d best be moving. I’m not glad staying here and watching those horrors spill blood and guts.” The witch gave her a sidelong glare. ”We move when I say so, brat. Now, keep quiet.” Despite her irritation, Beira decided to oblige the witch. There was hardly any point in riling the crone, when at the moment, obvious hostilities were not wise.

    For a time, the witch watched quietly as the demons fought against the valiant defenders of the castle. At a time when most of the nobles of the fortress town had travelled to other parts of Fiore on holidays, the town would not be as heavily defended as when the royalty, or a good number of nobles were around, meaning that the demons had less work to do, and they seemed hopeful to have done it, and finished long before reinforcements, which Beira was certain were coming, arrived. Then the old crone turned to the God Slayer and said, ”We may as well begin our own move.” So saying, the witch seemed to distort with the air around her, and she was gone. Beira scowled. She was not interested in teleporting herself up onto the wall; she wanted to reserve jumping across the Librarium for when she wanted to escape a tight scrape, not keep up with an annoying hag. Well, she was athletic enough, and with the nature of her powers, getting up on the wall would not be a single hassle at all. She sprinted towards the sturdy walls of the castle, and practically ran up them, using her control of nether rime to literally run on air when there were no footholds to make use of. Very soon, she had scaled the wall, and stood on one of the parapets of the castle, with the witch not too far off. The Old One turned to look at her, the hag’s twisted expression contorting even further with irritation. ”You’re too slow,” said she. ”Yes well,” replied Beira nonchalantly, ”it’s not as though you’ll be doing any work except moving around. I’m practically going to be doing all the labor, so I think it’s wise if you allowed me to conserve my energy, don’t you think?”

    The hag grumbled something incoherent, and began walking along the top of the wall. Beira followed silently, the two cutting a rather strange sight in the midst of the battle and chaos, like two figures that didn’t belong in a painting somehow juxtaposed there at the whims of some capricious artist. All around them the fighting raged, but no one seemed to notice the old witch, so as the crone had commanded, the Utgardian kept close, watching silently as she walked over broken remains of buildings and bodies of the slain, both of human and infernal. A part of her felt some deal of regret that lives were being lost unnecessarily, but she realized that the quest to get the Old One time vessel was quite important. If the hag wanted the time vessel, it stood to reason that this item was definitely housing great power. Beira knew she wouldn’t have been forced on this mission, had she not been needed. So she decided that when the time vessel was within sight, she would steal it. The Old One witch would not be able to access the Librarium without Beira’s consent, and so she could keep it there, and risk the wrath of the witch. Better yet, she would not bother to get the witch out for her blood. The solution to this was rather simple. She would kill the witch. After all, the dead never kept grudges. The thought of undead creatures came to mind, but as one who had affiliations with the arts of the necromancer, Beira knew that the dead were dead. The undead were not. And Beira was sure that that which was killed properly would not return to haunt her. If the old witch was like Uaggool, Beira was sure she could kill the witch. She was a God Slayer, after all.


    WC: 946 words
    Total: 3044/7000

    Fraag
    Fraag

    Player 
    Lineage : Incarnata of Nine Souls
    Position : None
    Posts : 388
    Guild : Errings Rising
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 584,173

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Winter God Slayer
    Second Magic: Percipience of the Deep Atheneum
    Third Magic: Demiurge of Primal Matter

    Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal Empty Re: Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal

    Post by Fraag on Wed 25 Dec - 19:42

    Beira and the witch descended a flight of stairs leading off the top of the wall, and crossed a courtyard filled with fighting people before they reached a gate which led into the city within the walls of the Royal Castle. The Utgardian was beginning to think that it was one of the witch’s powers to be able to render herself, and those she chose, undiscernible, for no one so much as gave the two women a passing glance. The witch paused for Beira to walk up alongside her, and pointed at a tower in the center of the city. ”That is where we are going. I shall wait for you there.” So saying, the crone distorted with the air around her once again, and was gone. Beira grimaced, not for the last time that day. It was rather offensive to her that the hag would tell her to stay close, and then vanish and leave her behind. But bothering to consider the stupidity of the matter was counterproductive, so she would just forge on with what she had to do.

    If Beira didn’t have a sixth sense, the blow that came swinging from behind her would probably have taken her head clean off. As the blonde mage dodged the blow, she noticed that the weapon swung at her was a giant clawed hand, which sailed cleanly above her head and cut into the wall beside her like the wall was butter. Beira looked up into the face of a leering demon, who laughed as it drew its hand back from the wall. ”Rakkul say you slippery. But you soft. I eat you.” Beira frowned, as realization dawned on her. The demon Rakkul had definitely betrayed them… or more probably her, commanding his troops to attack her on sight. As to whether the demon could betray the Old One, she could not say. What she knew was that she was now in as much danger as the men who defended the Royal Castle. The ice mage held up a hand, as a great sword of nether rime formed in her grip. ”Be careful how you chew, hellish scum,” came the reply, ”or you shall lose much more than just your teeth.”

    The demon roared and charged at her. Beira leaped over it with the grace of a gazelle, twisting while airborne to slice into its exposed back. ”I am soft, but I’m not the one who leaks.” With another roar, the fiend charged again. This time, Beira swerved to the left, avoiding a downward swing of its claw and slicing completely through its right knee, while moving behind it. The fiend, becoming frustrated and agitated, began flailing with whatever limbs were not injured. That was unwise, for soon it had no limbs to flail. It screamed in frustration, a sound which was suddenly cut short by Beira’s sword thrusting through its skull.

    Beira was really hoping Rakkul would still be alive when he crossed paths with her. Then she would teach him what she felt about those who betrayed her. As for the witch, she would still die, but what would determine how she died would be whether Beira perceived she had betrayed her or not. The young woman began walking in the direction of the tower the witch had pointed out to her, the great sword of nether rime still in her hand. A second demon came, this one more serpentine, and unlike the first, it didn’t bother to try attacking her from any blind spot. It came head on, jaws opened wide, aiming to swallow her. Beira pointed the great sword at the demonic beast, as the weapon’s handle suddenly extended, made longer by a shaft of nether rime attached to its handle. The snake was moving too fast to turn aside, and it impaled itself on the reaching weapon, as it did not have limbs to deflect the stab.

    By now, Beira was quite convinced that the Old One had betrayed her, just as Rakkul had. The Utgardian was of a mind to just abandon the mission and move on with her life, but she was sure that part of the nightmares she had had were on account of the Old One witch. Most likely, Uaggool had been able to reach out through the Travectio Infinium, the Infinite Crossroads, to which Beira’s Librarium Obscuri was connected, and had made contact with the witch. The witch, using Uaggool as a connection to Beira’s mind, was thus responsible for the crazy nightmares. If Beira left now, the hag would probably run her stark mad or worse. No, she would get to the tower, find the time vessel, take it, and kill the witch. If Uaggool connected to any other Old Ones again, she would have them killed as well.

    The walk to the tower was relatively not so eventful; much of the fighting was closer towards the gates of the Royal Castle. Just before the tower was a market, quite empty now, its traders and buyers having been chased away by the storm and the demonic onslaught. Beira passed by a fruit stand and picked a juicy looking apple. After a moment of thought, she placed the money for the apple on the table of the stand and walked on, eating the fruit. It was funny that she would, to get a chance to get the time vessel, and kill the Old One and Rakkul, place a castle, whose denizens had done nothing to her, in mortal jeopardy, and yet she had scruples about eating a fruit she hadn’t paid for. In any case, Beira was quite convinced that if some place such as this could not defend the time vessel, it was the faults of those who governed the castle for putting such an item in this place. And if it could not be well defended enough, then perhaps the one who would take it had every right to. Beira was here so that whatever power the time vessel possessed would not be abused. If some people would die here today, she was sure it wouldn’t compare with those who would die if the powers of the time vessel were abused.


    WC: 1033 words
    Total: 4077/7000

    Fraag
    Fraag

    Player 
    Lineage : Incarnata of Nine Souls
    Position : None
    Posts : 388
    Guild : Errings Rising
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 584,173

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Winter God Slayer
    Second Magic: Percipience of the Deep Atheneum
    Third Magic: Demiurge of Primal Matter

    Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal Empty Re: Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal

    Post by Fraag on Wed 25 Dec - 19:45

    As Beira drew close to the doors of the tower, a loud blaring horn rent the air, and just at that moment, the storm seemed to begin to die. Beira cared not for the storm; she didn’t mind being wet, and the cold could not discomfit her. But the sounding of the horn meant that most likely the reinforcements sent to deliver the castle from impending doom had arrived. That had been impressively quicker than the Utgardian had expected. But it placed her at something of a disadvantage, for this meant that time was not on her side at all. At the sound of the horn, every single infernal creature within the Royal Castle that breathed began rushing back towards the walls, even as Beira could hear the exultant cry of the defenders of the castle. At least she would have less to fight against now.

    Hurrying into the tower, Beira began to climb the winding stair that led upwards to the tower’s zenith. There was no one to face her, although as she ascended, she sensed a form facing another, both apparently ready to do combat. One of them was Rakkul. Running up the remaining stairs that led up to the landing on which the demon commander was, Beira burst through the doors that led onto the landing, already airborne, her sword held backwards, ready to arc through the air in a powerful swing that was meant to cause death, or at the very best, grievous trauma to the demon, should the blow land. However, Rakkul turned in time and caught the blow on his black club, thrusting Beira backwards once he had defended against her attack.

    ”If it isn’t the Old One’s pet,” the demon gloated. ”I was wondering when you’d get here.” Beira scoffed. ”More like wondering why I got here, you unfortunate waste of space,” she spat. ”Now that greetings are out of the way, it’s time to make good the threat with which I graciously warned you outside the city walls.” Rakkul laughed and readied himself for combat, brandishing his club as he strode towards the Utgardian maiden. Beira, for her part, chose not to move yet, quickly taking the time to scan the room. A little way off was a soldier dressed from top to bottom in an ornate armor, probably one of the commanding officers of this place. The soldier wisely stood back, preferring to watch as the strange enemies killed themselves, instead of getting involved in a battle of which there was still much to be learned. Once convinced the onlooker would not be interfering anytime soon, Beira decided to ignore the armored soldier, focusing instead on the approaching fiend. He struck his club against Beira’s sword, but she held her ground, unyielding. Surprised that such an apparently puny girl would withstand his blow, Rakkul aimed a mightier one, but Beira had predicted he would do that, and nimbly darted aside, swinging her blade at his side as she did so. The nether rime sword landed a hit, but the demon’s scales were too strong to allow him to receive a debilitating injury. Rakkul roared and barrelled at the mage, who evaded him again, this time scoring a solid blow on his back. Black, bilious liquid poured out of the fiend’s wound, yet he did not seem deterred by it.

    Unexpectedly, one of his wings lashed out, smacking Beira into the wall, and causing her to let go of her weapon of nether rime. Beira, despite having the wind knocked out of her, was quick to recover, leaping and rolling out of the way of Rakkul’s descending club. With a somersault kick, she smashed her heel into the side of his head, taking great care not to kick his jaw, so that her foot would not get impaled by the demon’s chin horns. Placing her hands on the ground, she performed an upside down pirouette and kicked out again, this time sending his club flying out of his hands. Then she righted herself with a descending heel kick, nailing the demon on the forehead and sending him sprawling to the ground.

    ”Your fancy kicks wont--” the demon’s speech was cut short as his own club went sailing into his mouth, sending his sharp teeth flying in all directions. Rakkul quickly rose to his feet, breathing rage and fury as he lunged at Beira, his clawed hands outstretched to rip out her throat. Instead of trying to dodge, Beira simply created an axe of nether rime and swung it into his neck before the fiend’s hands could close around her neck. The demon pulled out the weapon, sputtering as he staggered away, realizing that this battle was not going as planned. Suddenly, it seemed to dawn on him that he was in for trouble, and the demon turned to run. He had only taken two steps to the door before his head went flying off his neck, separated from the rest of his body by a masterful stroke of another nether rime sword in Beira’s hand.

    As Beira paused to get her breath, Rakkul’s decapitated head began to speak. ”Look, child, I can help you,” he said, desperate to be allowed to go. ”I can give you information, good information. Do you know that the Old One is the one who is the most at fault? She betrayed us both. It was she who told me to kill you.” Beira didn’t look impressed. ”Fine fine, do you know what the time vessel is meant for?” He could see that Beira seemed interested, so he continued hopefully. ”Just place my head back on my neck, and I’ll tell you what you need to know, that’s a promise.” The Utgardian walked up to the demon’s head, picked it, and walked over to the rest of his body. ”Now if you’ll just place my head—no, what are you doing?!”

    ”Making good a threat,” the God Slayer said, ramming the demon’s helically spiralled horns as far as she could beneath the demon’s tail. ”I keep my word, for good or ill.” Having performed the threat she had issued earlier in the day, the God Slayer froze the demon’s desecrated body in nether rime… and ducked for the umpteenth time that day, avoiding the spiked mace swung at her head by the armor clad soldier who had been watching her battle with Rakkul.

    ”Can’t I just have a moment when no one is trying to knock off my head?” Beira asked in disgust, readying herself for battle. She was beginning to get tired, and she was eager to be done with this whole sordid affair.

    ”Forgive my animosity, but unfortunately, you have to die, seeing as, you’re your discussion with that abomination, you were once colleagues, and therefore had a part to play in the attack of this castle,” the knight said with a surprisingly feminine voice. ”Just doing my job. No hard feelings?”

    ”None at all,” Beira replied. ”I have a job to do as well. May the best lady win.”


    WC: 1174 words
    Total: 5251/7000

    Fraag
    Fraag

    Player 
    Lineage : Incarnata of Nine Souls
    Position : None
    Posts : 388
    Guild : Errings Rising
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 584,173

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Winter God Slayer
    Second Magic: Percipience of the Deep Atheneum
    Third Magic: Demiurge of Primal Matter

    Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal Empty Re: Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal

    Post by Fraag on Wed 25 Dec - 19:47

    Beira watched the armored woman who began to warily circle her. Unlike the demon Rakkul, this one was well protected in a suit of full plate armor, as well as having a kite shield to up her defences. Beira was fine with using shields in combat, but armor, in her opinion, was quite cowardly. In any case, the average Utgardian warrior was more interested in glory in battle than surviving it. Of course, surviving a combat situation was all well and good, but it was much more glorious to show one’s mastery of battle by coming away alive after taunting death and bodily harm by eschewing protective clothing. Apparently, the soldier facing Beira thought otherwise, as she paused and cocked her head quizzically to one side before speaking.

    ”I am curious about one thing, if you’ll give me the indulgence of asking,” said she. Beira raised an eyebrow. Was her new opponent up to something? In any case, unless the spiked mace in her opponent’s hand was magical and capable of executing long distance attacks, Beira was relatively safe for the moment, being outside the armored woman’s striking range. ”Let’s trade questions. I answer one of yours, and you answer one of mine. Oh, and can we get to fighting? I’m afraid time isn’t on my side.” The woman shrugged. ”Suit yourself.” So saying, she quickly closed the distance between herself and Beira, swinging in a backhanded stroke at the Utgardian. Beira ducked and aimed a sweeping strike at her, but was quickly parried and shoved back by the kite shield. The God Slayer decided that to turn the battle tide in her favor, she would need to disarm the woman of her shield.

    ”I noticed you have a… strange style of your choice of armor… or lack of it. Care to explain?” she asked. Beira smiled and shrugged, although deep down, she was getting concerned as to why this woman wanted to talk to her, seeing as each sought to slay the other. ”I think armors are for cowards,” the God Slayer replied. ”My people faced death without fear, and did not seek any craven means of self-protection from damage or death. To me, armor is an insult to a warrior.” It was the woman’s turn to shrug. ”I notice you did refer to your people with a past tense, so I’d safely assume they’re mostly wiped out, or you’re even the last of them.” Her voice seemed to have a tone of gloating. ”Let those who survive battles drink to victory. So far, my armor has allowed me to do so.”

    ”My people’s distaste for armor is not why they are no more, and that is not any of your concern,” the God Slayer replied coolly. ”I have answered your question. I shall ask you mine. What is your name?” The armored woman made another attack, this time rushing at Beira with her shield. Beira planted her feet and withstood the charge, surprising the woman with her unexpected strength. But despite her surprise, the woman showed the mark of a veteran warrior by easily making another attack, this one a swinging blow with her mace over her shield, aimed at Beira’s head. The Errings Rising mage parried it with her sword and kicked the shield, causing her opponent to stagger backwards. ”You fight well, half-naked warrior. I am Warden Fleure.”

    ”Beira of Utgardr,” came the reply. While Fleure began talking about how she’d never heard of Utgardr, and her penchant for geography, Beira realized that she was making subtle twirls of her mace, and only when she was in view of a particular feature in the room, namely an open window. That was the reason for all the talking, to distract her. The woman was signalling someone, most likely a marksman who have coverage on the window, and the only reason the marksman had not fired yet was because Beira had not come to the window yet. The Utgardian now realized also that her opponent had been trying to get her to the window, whether by trying to muscle her there, or force her to circle in that direction. She, for her part, would continue to pretend as though she was unaware of the threat the window posed. But whatever the case would be, Beira was quite sure she had to end the battle and find the old hag and the time vessel. More and more, the tumult of the battle seemed to be drawing closer, and from the mostly human shouts, and these being shouts of victory or challenge, Beira knew that Rakkul’s forces had been more or less crushed. It was time to end this battle.


    WC: 780 words
    Total: 6031/7000

    Fraag
    Fraag

    Player 
    Lineage : Incarnata of Nine Souls
    Position : None
    Posts : 388
    Guild : Errings Rising
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 584,173

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Winter God Slayer
    Second Magic: Percipience of the Deep Atheneum
    Third Magic: Demiurge of Primal Matter

    Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal Empty Re: Of Blood and Battle and Betrayal

    Post by Fraag on Wed 25 Dec - 19:50

    First things first, someone’s shield had to go. Beira let her opponent charge again, this time swinging her mace. The Utgardian responded by dodging the swing, dropping her own sword, grabbing the kite shield and the soldier’s pauldron, and flipping, causing Warden Fleure to flip as well and lose her weapons in the fall. Once having her opponent on the ground, Beira kicked the large shield away and rose to her feet. Trying to keep Fleure on the ground and joint locking would not be so effective, thanks to the woman’s bulky armor, but Beira was hoping that getting up would be difficult for Fleure. It was not. The woman sprang to her feet and charged Beira, grabbing her midsection and ramming her back first into an old bookstand, sending tons of dust into the air. Beira responded by pulling herself free and swinging Fleure into the wall. Realizing that the dust and books would provide some level of advantage for her plan, Beira summoned her two chakrams, the Annuli Orci, though one of them she kept concealed beneath a pile of books. As Fleure got to her feet, she saw Beira fling the other chakram at her. The soldier batted it out of the way with a gauntleted hand and rushed Beira again. Using her mental control over the weapon, Beira summoned the ringed blade back, but expecting some trick, Fleure turned at the right moment and caught the chakram.

    Not willing to just allow the capture of her weapon to go without any secured advantage, Beira leaped at the armored woman, who said something in a strange language, most probably a spell, for her armor began to glow, and she grabbed Beira’s neck, stopping the Utgardian girl in mid-air. ”I’m afraid, child, that this is where this fight ends,” she said. But Beira was unwilling to be on the wrong side of the bout. Activating her Winter God Curse, she attempted to freeze Warden Fleure, but it seemed the enchantments on the armor worn by the warden were enough to reduce the effects of her ice, as well as greatly increase the strength of the warden, at least enough to allow Fleure movement still. Still struggling against the woman choking her, Beira discovered to her shock that the woman was bringing her to the window. She knew that as soon as she appeared in the window, just a single moment would pass, and then she would figure out, probably quite painfully, what had been planned for her. Fortunately, the girl had a trump card: her other chakram.

    The second chakram whizzed out of the pile of books beneath which it was concealed and sped straight and true into the space between the sections of the armor at Fleure’s back, just as the soldier had brought her to the window. If the chakram had not struck, Beira would have been unable to wrestle successfully against the heavier-built, and magically stronger, Fleure. But as the chakram struck, the woman faltered, giving Beira the opportunity to heave her around, just as the clear rapport of rifle fire reverberated. The soldier’s body jerked violently, and she released her grip and sank to the ground, falling against Beira as blood poured out of a wound at her back, between her shoulders. ”You—you slinky weasel,” she coughed, as blood came out of her mouth. ”So, you knew….”

    ”Suspected is more accurate,” Beira replied, gently laying the knight on the floor. Of course, she was not in view of the window, so she was safe from the marksman. ”May you rest gently, Warden. You must have made your forebears proud.” Having laid the knight to rest, Beira rose to her feet and headed on. She hadn’t gone far when she sensed, in a room not too far ahead, the form of a small, bent human leaning on a cane. The Old One. Steeling herself, and preparing a contingency plan in the very likely event of her being betrayed, Beira walked up to the door of the room in which the hag waited, and opened it. For all intents and purposes, it appeared to be a study, with various trophies and artifacts on display, adorning the many shelves and furniture in the room.

    ”Come, child,” the old woman said. Even after Beira knew that she had ordered the demon to kill her? What was the old woman playing at? Still, Beira entered the room, deciding that she would attempt to play along in ignorance, and see whether the witch jumped to the bait. ”Rakkul turned on us,” she said, making sure to choose her pronouns wisely, ”so I cut down the demon swine. But we have no time; reinforcements have taken the city.”

    The hag smiled. ”We do not need the city, what we need is the time vessel,” she said, indicating a small, silver orb, about the size of a golf ball, with strange markings on it. ”Take it, and let us be off.” Cautiously, Beira came over to the orb and picked it. Immediately, as soon as she touched it, the strange markings began to glow various scintillating colors, even as she felt her soul being sucked into the time vessel. She tried to pull away, but a force held her bound to the vessel; she sensed it was the Old One’s will. The hag cackled as the maiden tried in vain to free herself from the orb.

    ”Poor, foolish, little thing,” laughed the crone, ”While your ignorance has been so amusing, I feel, perhaps out of some desire to see you realize your purpose in my grand scheme, that I must tell you of your purpose before you expire. I’m sure that you’ve realized that no matter what you do, or where you go, even among your people, the Utgardians, you could never truly belong. This is because you are, biologically not human or Utgardian or whatever. You are a Harbinger, a wonder of the sciences and magics of the Old Ones. Created to serve us, your kind was designed by us to power our vessels, infiltrate worlds for our conquest, and do our bidding as we desire.” Beira could see that the time vessel was expanding, its structure transforming constantly as it increased in size. ”Now, my kind are almost gone, but I can bring back the days of old. The time vessel has many uses. It can travel through vast distances of space and time, if one knows the ways to go. It can find others of our kind…”

    As the witch spoke exultantly, she failed to notice that Beira’s plan had sneaked into the room, a necromantic summon, the Faer Gorta, its sword held ready. With the hag’s distraction, she was unaware of it until it plunged its blade into her back. The Old One turned, undamaged, but clearly enraged as she pointed at the summon, ripping it into scraps of bone. But that was enough for Beira to be released from the hold of the time vessel. Creating a spear of nether rime, she drove it downwards through the witch and into the floor. The Old One was shocked at the sensation; she didn’t think magic of Earthland could hurt her. The witch sank to her knees, sputtering, as Beira summoned another weapon made of ice, a gigantic axe. ”Do you feel that sensation, that feeling that tells you you’re in danger? It’s called fear. Your kind seem great at dispensing it, so relish it well.”

    ”This is impossible,” said the Old One, ”Your kind cannot kill me. I am a god…”

    ”Which is most unfortunate,” Beira cut in, raising her axe, ”for I am a God Slayer.” She brought the axe down, cleaving the witch from head to pelvis. The witch made a strange, indescribable sound, and began to twist and morph, clutching vainly at the last shreds of life that escaped her dying frame. Then all was still. Beira stood over a large, horrid form, difficult to describe, but what seemed to be the stuff of nightmares. Whatever it was, it was dead. She returned to the time vessel, which had become a ball again, and picked it. She felt it tugging at her soul, but there was no witch to subjugate her, and she felt the time vessel succumb to her will. Holding up her hand, Beira created a portal leading into the Librarium, just as three soldiers of different uniforms than the Royal Castle guard barged in. They saw the dead horror and recoiled, but saw Beira as well as she stepped into the portal.

    Quite difficult but rewarding the day had been. There was still a lot to do, like determining the use of the time vessel, and understanding more about those the witch had called the Harbingers, of whom she was stated to be. But for now, it would be good food, and a long, well-deserved rest.

    COMPLETED


    WC: 1484 words
    Total: 7515/7000


      Current date/time is Mon 1 Jun - 17:18