Lily called back as Lethe complained about Basin rolling through the group of infantry that she'd been squaring off against. The dryad doubted that the other mage truly was upset, but she was a friendly type and didn't mind throwing out apologies if it seemed like she might have offended someone. However even though she was still at a safe distance from the actual fight she couldn't afford to spend too much time thinking about it: they might have gotten rid of the frontlines but there was still a whole bunch of enemies left. And these all looked tougher than the ones Basin had rolled over as well, with heavier equipment and bigger weapons.
Saku was on standby for now, waiting for an enemy to come close enough for him to activate his abilities. He didn't have much interest in the fight beyond keeping his friends safe, so as long as nobody attacked him, Lily or Nepo he wouldn't do anything either. Of course there was also Basin, but the guardian had rushed in by zirself and was out of Saku's range. Besides, Saku would be very surprised if there was anything the enemy could do to seriously injure Basin, given that even breaking the guardian in half wouldn't actually do much other than incapacitate zir. Spreading his wings Saku stretched, watching from his safe spot as the battle unfolded, idly running his tongue past his fangs as he waited for something to happen. Not that he was so bloodthirsty as to want enemies to get within his range, but sitting here doing nothing while everyone else fought would also eventually get boring.
Nepo was sitting on Lily's shoulder, more alert than Saku and ready to help out should Lily ask that of him. He didn't have much more interest in the war than Saku did but was more passionate about helping out however he could when his friends needed it. As such he nudged Lily's cheek with the side of his head, letting out his usual strange sounds to ask her if she needed anything from him. Lily for her part patted him and smiled, whispering that it'd be fine as long as he was ready to protect her if anything attacked them. Nepo nodded eagerly, looking around to keep an eye on anything that could possibly pose a threat to the leaf-haired girl. Well, and Saku of course. Nepo wasn't going to let anyone hurt Saku either if there was anything he could do about it. And fortunately despite being small Nepo was capable of doing quite a lot when there was a need for it.
Basin, meanwhile... Was in the middle of the fight. All the weakest soldiers had been mowed down by his rolling boulder attack, but the other soldiers weren't about to retreat or falter. The guardian felt countless small pieces of metal smash into zirs stony figure, shrapnel flying in every direction but none of the bullets managing to get any deeper than a couple of centimeters. Basin didn't have a skin of stone or anything like that: zirs entire body was made of stone, so the bullets didn't even have a chance of dealing much damage even if they did manage to penetrate any further. Some of the soldiers appeared to finally realize that, holding their fire and reloading their guns. The guardian could practically see their minds churning, trying to think of a way to injure this massive figure of rock and earth.
Raising one hand Basin curled it into a fist and smashed it down towards one of the soldiers, who managed to leap out of the way before impact. Smashing against the ground Basin's immediate surroundings shook, the other soldiers all moving backwards as they realized that being hit by Basin's fists would most likely put them out of commission in one blow, if it didn't kill them outright. The guardian, however, didn't have any reason to just let them retreat and walked after them, heavy footsteps punctuating zirs advance while zirs fists were ready to strike anything that came close enough. Some of the soldiers which were surrounding Basin raised their guns and resumed firing, but all they achieved was to further chip away at the massive stone figure that didn't slow down or relent in the slightest.
However, it looked like the enemy wasn't going to keep up this futile tactic forever. A shout from the back of the enemy squad resulted in the gun-wielding soldiers breaking away from Basin, four of them splitting up to head for Lily and the two elemental creatures instead. Now Basin was left facing a single opponent, a man wearing more traditional knight-like armour and wielding a large sword that could probably be used as a club if slicing and cutting didn't work. The guarding came to a halt, watching the guard with zirs one glowing blue eye. The guard in turn levelled his sword at Basin, holding it with two hands and regarding him steadily. "You must be one of those golems I've heard about. Let's see if you can still move after I've cut you in two."
If Basin could talk ze would have told the guard that ze wasn't a golem, but an earth guardian. Of course to a human there might not be much difference, but Basin would have found the distinction important. Golems were just magical machines with complicated codes making them move in certain ways. Basin was a fully conscious entity with self-awareness and intellect, even if it didn't look like it from the outside. Instead of saying anything like that Basin just stepped forward and brought zirs fist down upon the guard. However instead of meeting the guard's body or even his sword Basin's fist only struck empty air and the ground, the guard now suddenly standing behind Basin and slashing at zir with his large sword. While the blade managed to dig in deeper than the bullets shot by the other soldiers the strike still didn't get very far, metal rebounding off of stone and the guard grunting in frustration. "You're tougher than normal stone as well."
Meanwhile Lily, Saku and Nepo were preparing for the four soldiers that were approaching the three of them. Given that it was three against four they were at a numeric disadvantage, and with Basin busy fighting the elite soldier they couldn't rely on the guardian to act as their frontline while they bombarded their enemies from a distance. Glancing at Saku and Nepo Lily quickly nodded, the two elemental creatures separating from the dryad and setting themselves up to each fight their own battles. Before the fight started Lily quickly threw a surge of life magic at Basin: it didn't exactly heal the guardian as it would a creature of flesh and blood, nevertheless the cracks that had been put in zirs body by the bullets and the sword were quickly smoothed over until ze looked good as new.
Nepo, eager as always, ran forward to intercept two of the Imperial Army Officers. The two soldiers raised their reloaded guns as one, aiming at the small hippocamp and firing a barrage of bullets. Nepo in response let out a sound similar to a baby whale, the water that covered his body compressing into two streams that shot forward to meet the bullets. Water and metal clashed, the force of Nepo's water guns enough to divert the bullets and make them fall uselessly to the ground. The waterdweller didn't stop running, dashing forward at surprising speed until he was right in front of the two soldiers. Once separated from them by a mere meter the layer of water covering his skin began to shoot outwards in every direction, droplets spraying through the air but coming to a halt before they fell back to the ground. The two soldiers were suddenly surrounded by droplets on every side, making them hesitate and stick close together as they reloaded their guns once more. When it looked like the floating water wasn't going to do anything they slowly advanced, one of them experimentally slashing at a nearby droplet with his army knife.
Whatever the two had been expecting, they hadn't anticipated the droplet exploding, nearly knocking them off their feet and causing several nearby droplets to explode as well. Covering their heads with their arms the soldiers waited for the chain reaction to subside, relying on their armour to protect them. Once the explosions had come to an end they swiftly turned towards Nepo... only for the hippocamp to be nowhere to be seen.
A small sound made them look up, where Nepo was seemingly standing on a thin sheet of water floating mid-air. Before they could raise their guns Nepo made another sound... and this time the entire field of floating droplets exploded at once, ravaging the two soldiers with a bombardment akin to a minefield. Their armour, tough and durable, couldn't withstand the barrage, the shockwaves travelling through their bodies and causing their organs to tear up. With blood flowing from their mouths the two officers collapsed, breathing painfully and trying not to scream even as their bodies refused to move properly.
One officer ended up facing Saku, the more withdrawn spring dragon. Saku's abilities were more supportive in nature than Nepo's combat-oriented water magic, but he still wouldn't let some non-magical human with some funny weapons upstage him. The officer in question was rather wary of the little dragon, but after Saku openly yawned he quickly responded by raising his gun and opening fire. Saku replied with a burst of magic that made the officer stagger, the bullets missing Saku even before the dragon spread his wings and flew up into the air. Circling above the officer Saku swerved to avoid a line of bullets as the officer kept trying to hit him only for the nimble dragon to evade. While flying about small orbs of spring magic would rain down from Saku's leaf-wings like magical pollen, landing on the officer and the ground around him. While at first this did nothing soon the officer would slow down and become winded... even as from his body flowers began to grow. Letting out a hoarse scream the officer dropped to his knees as quickly his entire body was hidden behind a layer of colourful flowers. Saku landed on top of the mound, feeling the officer's weak struggling until finally enough life and strength had been drained from him that he fell unconscious.
If he was Lily he'd probably have relented at that point, but Saku figured that this officer would do a better job as nourishment for the plants than wielding that stupid metal stick of his.
That left Lily with the last officer. The dryad, not quite as eager to face off against a soldier by herself, spoke up first. "Uhm... It'll probably be better if you just surrender!"
She hoped that the man would take the hint and either give up or go away. Unfortunately for her, Pergrande didn't train their soldiers to desert. Especially since Lily didn't exactly come across as intimidating: a rather short woman with brown skin, green hair, a dress made of leafs and strange eyes with amber sclera. While exotic nothing about her screamed combatant.
[color:40d8=#[color=#999999]"After what you freaks have done to my comrades you should be the one surrendering instead. Step down if you aren't willing to fight!" He didn't wait to listen to her response before he also opened fire, slowly advancing even as he kept unleashing hell on the dryad.
Lily let out a small shriek of surprise as the gun began to fire. She quickly threw up a wall of earth as a defence, but given its impromptu creation it wasn't sturdy enough and the bullets quickly began to smash their way through. One bullet grazed Lily, making the girl yell out once more as orange-yellow sap seeped out of the wound rather than blood. Throwing herself to the ground she managed to dodge the remainder of the volley, as even with the barrier partially destroyed the officer still couldn't accurately aim through it at his opponent. Cursing and swearing the officer began to reload the moment he ran out of bullets, but now that he'd actually started the fight Lily wasn't going to just lay there and let it happen.
Placing her hands against the ground roots surged forward, the earthen barrier parting to let them through. The officer, not expecting the sudden attacking, tried to dash to the side. One of the roots reached out and wrapped around his ankle, pulling him back against the ground and driving the air out of his lungs. Before he could claw his way free the roots wrapped themselves around his entire body, anchoring him to the ground and keeping his limbs in place. Struggling and squirming the man couldn't do much as Lily walked up to him, the wound on her arm already healing as her expression was a mixture of fright, hesitation and anger. "I'm really sorry."
Kneeling next to her incapacitated foe she placed both hands on his stomach and concentrated. The man tried to curse at her but a root wrapped around his lower face, effectively gagging him as Lily went to work. Thorns sprouted out of her hands, digging into the man's flesh even as she began to drain his life force. A small trickle at first, then quickly more and more until the man was motionless, his eyes rolled up into the back of his head. When she retracted her thorns and pulled her hands back Lily could tell that he as still alive, but barely. She might actually have to heal him a little bit if she wanted to ensure his survival.
Basin, in the meantime, was busy fighting an opponent ze couldn't catch. Every time ze tried to strike at the Imperial Guard the man dodged. He was clearly not a fool, keeping a good distance from the guardian so Basin couldn't take him by surprise. Stepping forward once more Basin brought both fists down, trying to catch the guard between them so he couldn't dodge. Instead the man first jump back, then before Basin could pull back zirs hands he jumped onto the guardian's massive arms and ran up them to reach zirs head. An overhead swing with both hands smashed into the boulderlike creature's head, carving deep into the stone and sending more sharpnel flying everywhere. Basin's movements halted for a moment, zirs glowing blue eye flickering before ze recovered and reached up to swat the man away, only for the guard to slide down Basin's back and end up behind zir. "I'll admit you're tough and strong, but you're too slow. That and it looks like you might not be as invincible as you act."
The guard had apparently noticed that smashing Basin's head like that had an effect, even if it was very little."Well then, let's see if I can't-!"
This time the guard was forced to use that blink ability he had used before. Basin's fist came flying towards him at incredible speed, the wind whistling where it was pushed aside by the powerful blow. Once more Basin hit empty air, the guard appearing at zirs side with sword already drawn back. "Looks like I hit a nerve."
Given that stabbing a walking statue would be foolish he instead swung his blade at Basin's knee, a loud crack resounding as he actually managed to form a sizeable cleft in the vulnerable joint. Basin took a step backwards in response, once more striking with surprising speed. However ze had overplayed zirs had, and this time the guard managed to dodge without using that blink ability. Rolling underneath Basin's huge fist he ended up practically underneath the guardian, where he quickly stood up and transferred the momentum of his roll into another slash which was aimed at the same knee. A second crack, and Basin slowly fell over as one of zirs legs had been cut off at the knee."Now for the head..."
The guard quickly jumped backwards to avoid being crushed, but was already bringing his sword back up for a large, powerful swing that would separate Basin's head from zirs shoulders. So far as the guardian had shoulders. The guardin in response raised both arms as as shield, the guard snorting. "Fine. I'll go through those as well."
Another blink, and suddenly he was above and in front of Basin. He brought his sword down with tremendous force. The blade bit into Basin's arm. Stone was parted as one arm was chopped clean off. The second arm was also cut but withstood the strike. The guard let out an annoyed tsk as he felt that his attack had been halted. Trying to pull his weapon back he realized that it was stuck inside Basin's arm. Letting go of the weapon he jumped back. "Now what-!?"
The ground, solid before, was now suddenly sinking. Water was bursting forth from underground. A mass of plants was sprouting. The guard tried to jump only to find that the plants were wrapped around his legs. Even worse, his feet were also quickly sinking into the mud. Within seconds he was up to his thighs in water. "What is this!"
He didn't have much time to think.
Basin raised zirs remaining fist. With the guard stuck in place ze could finally get a hit in. The guard's eyes opened wide as he began to pull harder on his legs. He managed to get one leg free, foot slipping out of the boot that was stuck underwater. However he couldn't place that foot back down without it getting trapped again. Letting out a scream of desperation he held both arms in front of him. Same as Basin had before. However this time the results were different.
Basin's single, glowing blue eye glared as zirs fist came down like a meteor. It smashed into the guard's feeble attempt at defending himself. The boulder that was his fist broke straight through. The guard's screams turned painful as he could feel his arms get pulverized. It didn't take much longer before the rest of his body received the same treatment. The water of the swamp that had formed around Basin rippled as his single blow buried the guard in the submerged mud, the ground shaking once more. Basin could feel the guard's body twitch once or twice before it stopped moving entirely.
After several seconds Basin pulled the man's broken and crushed body out of the swamp and tossed it aside. Like a ragdoll it flew through the air, rolling for over a meter when it hit dry ground before coming to a halt. The guardian zirself slowly stood up, looking around and then down at zirself. Ze had sustained a lot more damage than ze had expected, but even as the swamp slowly dried up again ze could feel Lily's healing magic flowing through zir. Picking up the arm the Imperial Guard had managed to chop off ze placed it back where it belonged, Lily's magic causing the two pieces of stone to meld back together.
There weren't a lot of enemies left, so Basin would take zirs time reattaching zirs leg as well.
Enemies: Imperial Army Recruit - 0/27
Imperial Army Officer - 8/32
Imperial Guard - 3/4
Imperial Paladin - Private - 0/1@Lethe @SlayerMathis_