Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

It's a castle....and it's floating! :O

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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Qara-Xuan Zenith on Mon Jun 03, 2013 8:01 pm

Timelime note: Immediately after Quest 21.

Ben didn't see the returned members of Severed Claws until she got back to the inn. She felt relieved to see one of her people sitting at the bar, a little worse for wear but all in one piece.

But... "Hey... do you know where Mat is?" she asked, naming the other missing guildmember.

The man turned to face her, his face sombre. "They killed him yesterday. Slowly. Sometimes it's better to bend than to break."

Ben nodded, her face pale. She didn't have the right words to say to him, right now; she wasn't the one who was good at consoling people. The best she could do was make a hasty exit and hope that he found someone who was.

***

Ben sat cross-legged on the bed in her room at the inn, turning one of those blasted wooden medallions over in her hand.

It hadn't-- well, it hadn't been pleasant. It wasn't as if she were able to forget the events of the past year in any case, but this... it was still too raw.

She glanced down at the ring she had obstinately put on her finger that morning, "to remember." She remembered plenty, all right.

She remembered the call on the distance-horn, the cold terror at the words "Charlie's missing."

She remembered hearing how Prince Innis, his brother-in-law-to-be, had come panting into the palace, hours after the two young men had gone off together, shouting that they had been ambushed, that he had been knocked unconscious and Charlie taken away.

She remembered insisting she be given the resources to lead her own search party for her baby brother, remembered scouring the countryside, double-checking leads that others had discarded.

She remembered being the one to find him. That sight was indelibly etched inside her mind. It would not go away no matter how desperately she willed it to, and she could not will it to when she knew that she must always bear witness.

She must always bear witness. She had found her brother, chained to the wall like an animal, half-dead, half-starved, drugged and blindfolded and beaten bloody, barely a bone in his body left intact, tortured both physically and mentally. She had taken him out of there, helped to nurse him if not back to health then back in its direction on the way home. She had had to teach him not to hate himself, not to be afraid of needing someone's help, not to think that he was weak just because he had been hurt. And she had put aside every compromising emotion in order to ask Charlie the hard questions, probe his memories of what had happened, to spearhead the search for the monster who had done such a thing.

As the prime investigator, Ben had had to see, too, the look on Charlie's face when he discovered, beyond a question of a doubt, that the man who had loathed him enough to do this was none other than Innis, sweet, innocent Prince Innis, whom he had loved like his own brother. Whom he had loved more than himself.

After the trial, Ben had not been the one to slay Innis; Charlie had insisted on fulfilling his duty himself. God only knows which tribulation cut him deepest.

Ben wiped dry a cheek which she would not admit to having cried on, twisting the ring around in circles absentmindedly. She had not lost her faith in humanity today. Today was simply another thing for her to... remember.
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Guyshane on Mon Jun 17, 2013 12:20 am

Follow-up to quest 24

Marcus was nearing the temple, having taken the time to blindfold Kavros before they got to close. Anji is gonna be pissed as all hell Marcus thought to himself as he walked. Maybe I can just pretend to listen to her rant until shes done. Then again if she realizes I’m doing that she’ll probably hit me over the head with her damn staff Marcus sighed as he dragged the prisoner inside the temple. “Anyone here? I brought a present.”

-----

Anji had just woken up from what felt like hibernation. Stretching, she noticed that the sword had somehow managed to get to the other side of the room while she slept. Glancing outside, she saw that the sun had just cleared the trees. Jumping out of bed, she growled as she opened the door to the common room to find that no one was there. “Damnit Hector,” she said softly. She quickly checked the infirmary and confirmed that Hector was indeed, asleep. Does that guy ever stop sleeping? She thought as a new voice called out.

-----

Julius had barely arrived back from his rescue mission, and sleeping seemed like a good idea; unfortunately, Anji and Hector were both already asleep, and he was unable to actually fall unconscious at the moment. Opting instead to rest awake until the others woke up, he was laying in his room when he heard a voice calling out from the main room. Seemingly from a new arrival. Unsure of what to expect, he decided to take a look, even if walking around was against Zi’s instructions.

-----

The three entered the main area from different directions at the same time. Anji noticed Marcus and the blindfolded man before Julius, and responded in kind. “What are your brains crow-picked? What you fink you’re doin’ you bloody sod. Bringing a crow-begotten idiot here?!”

“It’s nice to see you’re okay too Anji.” Marcus replied. “What my crow-picked brains have brought is ‘Commander’ Kavros of the anti-guilds. aside from no doubt having value of information I encountered him when he and his men tried to burn down the forest. They know where we are. Maybe not exactly but we have to get everyone and get the hell out of here, as soon as we can.” Marcus pushed Kavros down to the floor.

“Please tell me you’re not serious...” Julius stared at the scene. He started to consider the meaning of having one of the leaders of the anti faction movement in their hideout. “They’ll look for him, if they know we are on this general area, this will just narrow down their search area... You should take him to the city outskirts and leave him there. That’ll at least give us time to move the other way.”

Marcus looked at Julius. “We are out of time, they tried to smoke us out, we got lucky, once. We won’t get lucky again.”

Anji turned to face Julius, her angry face turning pale, “Jules... Get into a bed, and go to sleep. Now.”

With the other two looking directly at him, Julius became aware of his own exhaustion. Still, he couldn’t stop, not yet. “Look... I just met Legias a few hours ago... If you’re expecting to have the Guard take us out of here, let’s just say that I’m in better shape than her at the moment. And Adam is tied up fighting a war inside the walls.”

“Right.” Anji said, “We can’t stay here.” Seeing Julius’ look, she shook her head and continued, “The forest can’t hide us anymore, and the guilds have lost the city. We have Kavros, for what it’s worth, but he’s replaceable, and even he knows that. So, get everyone to get their gear together. We’re leaving this city, while it’s still an option.”

Marcus nodded. “I’ve got all my stuff and some of the herbs I wanted to get. Between the fire and the damn copper taste I couldn’t get all of them though. Also I’m out of black powder now.”

Looking at Julius, Anji shook her head and grabbed his hand, nearly dragging him into the infirmary.

“Careful with that.” Julius winced as Anji pulled him. “I’m not sure what Aza just did, but it’s not exactly easy to ignore my broken arm right now...”

“Bloody Crows, Jules.... How are you standing?!”

“Can’t really stop now, can I?” Julius moved back to his current bed, sitting down but still refusing to get any sleep at the moment. “We need to figure out what we’ll do now... Hopefully we have a few days, I doubt they’ll risk burning the forest again, not if they think they can get Kavros from us.”

“Good. Means you have enough time to get some bloody rest.” Anji said stubbornly. “I’ll start working on moving everyone up. You however, need a healer and a good week’s sleep. You look like a cow that’s been eaten by a bear.”

“And you haven’t been sleeping either, you need at least as much rest as I do, Anji.” Julius looked at her concerned. “Tamar, Zi and Marcus are here. Hector is also back on his feet. You can afford to sleep too.”

Marcus cleared his throat startling them both. “Here is a crazy idea guys: instead of arguing over who needs more sleep, why don't we get to the 3rd floor away from all this nonsense, find some shelter and then we can all rest.”

Anji stopped arguing with Julius long enough to start ordering Marcus around, “Right. Since you’re so keen on keeping the one man who’d love to see us all drawn and quartered in the same hideout, you get to watch him. He makes any trouble, hit him with your mace until he’s not trying to make any more trouble.”

Marcus grinned “I’d like to see him make trouble now, I tied up his legs and he’s only got one good arm and in this case “good” is a matter of opinion.” Marcus turned and left. “But, whatever, sure. I was just tired of hearing this same damn discussion.”

“Get that idiot thief out of my sight.” Anji growled at Marcus before turning back to Julius, “You will sleep.” She ordered calmly before striding out of the room.

Julius yawned. “Right after you.”

Anji returned moments later, Zi in tow. Calmly, without a word, Zi reached for the injured swordsman’s head and jabbed him just behind his ear with a needle. Eyelids fluttering, he slumped and fell unconscious.

“Never listens..” Eliziya grumbled to herself, taking a moment to glare at her recalcitrant patient. Then she turned to Anji. “Never-Fading, your eyebags. How long has it been since you’ve slept, Jie?”

“I got some sleep last night.” Anji replied softly.

Zi eyed the bed, then jabbed Anji as well. Thankfully, the bed was large enough to accommodate both Anji and Julius without it being too awkward. Not that it mattered when they were both out cold anyway. Pulling Anji onto the bed, she yawned, giggled softly and left the room.
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Postby Qara-Xuan Zenith on Mon Jun 17, 2013 4:22 pm

Things were, well, quieting down. Not cooling off, not by a long shot, but the streets were no longer full of rioters to try to pacify. The shape of the city had changed into something that Ben could no longer pretend to herself that she could fix. Not without an army, and she had no interest in raising one of those.

There was still work to do, but nothing was immediate anymore. With no pressing concerns, she had the time to notice two things. First, her head hurt like all hell. Second, she had run out of the tea that would ameliorate said head.

Wasn't there an apothecary somewhere around here?

***

Ben made her way down the tradesmans' street, and stopped a little ways away from where she had vaguely remembered the apothecary being, taking inventory. Sure enough, there was the sign reading "APOTHECARY", or rather, "A OTHE ARY". And... let's see... smashed windows, some very odd equipment lying about, empty shelves, no lamps lit, no signs of life. The lack of herbs-strewed-about-the-floors suggested that the apothecary hadn't been lynched, but had rather removed himself and his inventory before worse happened than a broken window. All it really meant was that she was out of luck in the tea department.

About to turn back in disgust, Ben stopped, irrationally. Up ahead, also peering frustratedly at the empty storefront, was a woman. Ben could only see her from the back, and that long, curly light-brown hair could belong to anyone. Still--

The woman turned, coming to the same conclusion as Ben, and the knight, who had been still watching her, gave a sound of recognition. "Lorinicole?" If it's not her, I'm going to have sounded like a--

"Ben!" The woman rushed over to where the redhead stood, kissing her on both cheeks. The feminine gesture felt odd and stilted to Ben, but it was Lorin all over. "How have you been?"

"I've been holding myself together," Ben answered noncommittally. "What brings you to these parts? I haven't seen any carpets of late." She glanced about the skies, as though to emphasize her point.

Lorinicole laughed, a rich, bell-like sound. "Honey, I don't work for Trans-Kingdom. I was just contracted out for their job last year. The quest finished; I got reassigned somewhere else. Where better than here, after all? So many adventurers looking for something to do."

Ben still wasn't sure exactly what Lorin's job was, though she remembered all too clearly the circumstances in which they had first met. She smiled, letting the other person monopolize the conversation for once. "It's good to see a familiar face," she admitted, the next time she got a word in edgewise.

"Good to see you, too, m'dear. Honestly, some of the accents people have around here are terrible, you have no idea-- though I suppose I'm in no position to complain..."

Ben had been about to give up on getting her tea, but seeing an old acquaintance renewed her resolve. After all, it's not the first time I've gone on a harebrained search for something trivial, she thought ruefully. "Listen," she said, "I'm going to see if I can find that apothecary. He's got to be hiding out somewhere. You want me to pick up whatever you were coming for while I'm at it?"

Lorinicole eyed Ben. She wasn't generally shy about what was on her mind, but something made her hesitate. "Actually... how about I go with you? I'd hate to put you out to make deliveries when you've got more important things to do," she added.

***

Ben had to admit, it was convenient searching with someone experienced in quests from the outside. She didn't know how well she'd have muddled along otherwise, without a map or any hints as to where a reclusive apothecary might be.

As it was, the sun was only beginning its descent when they lucked out with an abandoned warehouse on the far side of town.

Ben cautiously tried the door; it practically swung off its hinges. The two women walked in, Ben keeping a hand to her sword hilt and her eyes flicking about in case they’d made a grave mistake in coming here.

A man emerged from the shadows, pointing a bow knocked with an arrow. “I know who you are Ben of Severed Claw, but who is she? And how did you even find me?”

“This is Lorin,” Ben introduced, “and seeing as she’s a friend of mine, I’d really prefer you not point that thing at... either of us, really.”

Lorinicole snorted and nudged her companion. “Like I’ve never been in a line of fire before.” Ben rolled her eyes.

“So you don’t want to have an arrow pointed at you,” Elric replied. “I didn’t want to abandon my shop because some damn fools have a problem with someone who I hired. Life is unfair.”

“I’m sorry to hear that,” Ben replied, as diplomatically as she could be with this pounding headache. “However, I am of the opinion that having undergone unpleasant circumstances does not constitute a license to threaten others. I’m assuming you like to think you’re a better person than the ones who threatened you? Or are you just happy to drive away any other customers?”

Elric sighed and shook his head. “You misunderstand me. I am currently exclusively selling to guild members, since they were the ones not trying to ruin my way of life. Because apparently everyone lost their sense of irony along with their rationality. However.” Elric paused, his eyes narrowing. “I don’t know your friend there. I’ve never seen her before now, and I’m pretty sure she isn’t part of any guild.”

Ben crossed her arms. “Well, I am a guild member who would like to purchase some tea before you convince me to take my business elsewhere. As for Lorin, I’ll call her a temporary Severed Claws member if it’ll make you happy; I can vouch that she was not, and is not, interested in attacking you.” She turned to her friend. “I’m sorry, it would probably have been simpler if I’d just picked up your order... you’re willing to sign to my guild until further notice just to buy what you wanted?”

Lorinicole grinned. “Sounds like fun. I’ve never declared myself a bona fide adventurer before.”

I must be a damn fool Elric thought to himself. “Fine, fine. You sound like you have a specific order,” he said pointing at Lorin. “As for you, Ben, what kind of tea do you want? I have almost every flavour I’ve ever encountered. Even some stuff the royals drink... although I admit I don't know how good it is, considering the age of the leaf in question.” Elric paused for a moment. “Also I should warn you two, the rates are higher than normal. Business isn’t exactly easy for me to conduct right now.”

Ben kneaded her forehead. Diana’s the one who actually knows the names of things like tea. “I just... any kind of tea that helps with a headache while preferably not tasting awful, I’ll buy it. I’ll trust your judgement over mine on this.”

“Simple enough, and what about you?” he asked the other woman.

Lorinicole flashed a smile, leaning forward before Ben could interject. “We’ll be paying separately, of course,” she said, waiting until Ben was occupied with her purse before she made her request.

Elric briefly disappeared into the shadows. he came back a moment later with three bundles. He gave one to Lorin before giving two to Ben. “I realize it might be awhile before you see Marcus or anyone in his guild, but when you do can you see that the top bundle gets to him?”

Ben rubbed her temples again. She had no particular desire to encounter Storm and Drive again. On the other hand... Leader of the guild. Just like real life, right? “I’ll be sure to,” she answered with a sigh, accepting both packages.

“I appreciate that,” the apothecary responded.

***

Ben insisted on walking Lorinicole back to her lodgings. The other woman protested that she was no stranger to city streets, but Ben held firm. "Lorin, it's dark out by now and the city is not what one would call safe these days; I'm not swearing you into my guild just to have you run through in an alleyway."

Lorinicole had to content herself with a muttered "Knights!" and the pleasure of Ben's companionship after that, as she had no valid retort.

Ben bade the brunette farewell at the doorstep of the inn where she was staying. Before she left, Lorin touched her on the arm. "Ben... if you're ever in need of a fun time, or just a friendly face, well... you know where to find me."

Ben grinned, and gave a mock salute. "Will do," she promised, before heading back to her own headquarters.

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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby agoraoptera on Tue Jun 18, 2013 9:11 am

Shortly after the follow-up to quest 24

---

The building around him was quiet, in that tense, unsubtle way things are just before a storm breaks loose, as Tamar walked the corridors of the temple in search of... well anybody really. There were plenty of people here now, but the temple was so large that it was easy to end up alone amongst all those side corridors and hidden passageways. Seriously, he had gotten lost about four times since they arrived here.

Of course, with the way things had been lately, there was always a storm somewhere on the horizon, so basically, it was just another day in Storm and Drive’s current hideout. If you excluded the approaching threat of an Anti-Guild assault, but Tamar was trying not to think too hard about that right now.

He knew they were planning to move soon. This was about where his worries started. Moving was risky to begin with, he doubted Hector would be willing to leave the town, the threat to his life or no, and Tamar remembered the promise he had made. Still they had to do something, at some point. There was no way they could hide out here forever, not with the Anti-Factions breathing down their necks.

He noted, with some relief, finding a side room that he was familiar with, but that relief faded to confusion when he pushed the door open, to find it already occupied, and was immediately filled with that awkward feeling of walking in on something.

“Uh... Zi?”

“Zi?” came the repetition - yep, that was Eliziya alright. She stood in front of a bed, tending to Julius’.. wounds... “H-hi Tamar.”

“...Hi. Um. Should I ask?” Tamar gestured vaguely at the bed.

“I- I-” She was strangely flustered, blushing furiously. “I-It wasn't my fault. It wasn't, I s-swear!”

“O-oh...kay. I um... I believe you. I didn’t think anyone could do that! Saints, how did you manage to get them both to sleep at the same time?”

Zi glanced from left to right shiftily, as though contemplating an answer. “Carefully.”

“Right. Carefully,” Tamar did not note aloud how odd it was that Zi had not told him to be quiet when he came in. There was an exceptionally awkward pause. “...Um... are you alright? I haven’t really talked to you much since... you know. Luca.”

“Luca.” A strange look passed over her face and she gazed for a moment at Anji’s sleeping form. Then the look vanished and, with a small laugh, Zi reached over and pulled Anji’s arm around Julius, taking care not to brush any of the bandages.

Tamar did his level best not to go into fits of giggles. “Firefly!”

“Fly, what?” Eliziya blinked innocently, her brown eyes glittering with mirth. “It’s not a large bed.”

“Uhuh,” Tamar shook his head, then drew the sword from his belt and reached for Eliziya’s hand. “Hey, come out here a minute. I want to show you something.”

She blinked again, this time nonplussed. “Show you something, show me what thing?”

“Not in here, there’s flammable stuff in here,” Tamar pulled her out of the room and into the corridor, a smile on his face.

The corridor was dark and empty. Even though they had lit all the candelabras and torches they could find, the building was too hgue and empty for that to mean much, even just the corridors. Tamar led her away from the light voer to one of the more shaded corners.

“Tamar? What are you doing?”

“Shh, this is cool, I promise, watch.”

“Watch? I can’t watch anything, you’re standing in the dark.” Eliziya frowned, but there was a glimmer from the sword Tamar always seemed to carry with him, and Tamar muttered something quietly under his breath.

Then the corner wasn’t dark anymore. Flame twisted around the shape of the blade in his hands, faint orange fading to blue at the hilt, like the flame of a miner’s lamp, different from her own light.

“Fire!” Zi instinctively reached for the sword, spots of flame- her own orange- flaring about her hands. She reached out to grab the blade, or knock it out of his hands before anything he was wearing could catch fire, but Tamar’s hand gripped the hilt of the sword tighter. “What are you doing...”

“It’s alright, look.”

She stared at him doubtfully, then began to grin with child-like excitement as she realised that his hands were obviously left unharmed. “When did you- How are you doing this? I didn't know you were a mage?”

“Neither did I,” Tamar murmured quietly. “Nobody did. I never demonstrated anything like it before. No spells, no magic... Hollow, that’s what they called it. Everyone else could do it.” He pulled his hand away from hers and dropped the sword down on the floor. The flame went out as soon as he stopped touching the blade. “I thought maybe it was just the sword, but... magic doesn’t work that way, right? It comes from somewhere. Not from things.”

“Not quite,” she said slowly, “I couldn’t say exactly, but.. I draw it out from inside me, I suppose. So it’s gotta be coming from you, right?”

“...Right,” Tamar murmured and picked up the blade again, although he didn’t sound convinced. “But they checked. They tested every possible way, Zi. I could never do this. I didn't have magic, and now I’m setting things on fire?”

“Then they were wrong,” she told him with an air of finality. “You’re a mage and they didn’t find out. What else can you do?”

Tamar stayed quiet for a second before lighting the blade up again: not a full flame this time, just a dull glow. It looked like the metal you might draw out of a forge, close to boiling point. Neither of them reacted as if they were anywhere close to a flame that would burn away anyone elses skin away. His hand was warm to her touch and Eliziya grinned with barely restrained glee.

“You can do things, like I can! Do you think you could heal?”

“Firefly...” Tamar bit down on his exasperation. He’d already tried to make the fire happen without the sword, but it only ever worked when the blade was in his hand. If the fire had somewhere to go that wasn’t inside of him. “I... don’t think so, it really doesn’t seem to work without Echo.”

“Echo?”

“Uh...” The sword light went out abruptly, but not before Eliziya noticed Tamar’s face turning bright red. “Okay, um... yeah that... that’s going to take a bit of explaining?”

“I hope,” she began, sparking a few hovering candle-lights into existence casually, the better to observe his face, “you’re not gonna explain this like how you explained my vase. The blue one.”
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Guyshane on Wed Jun 26, 2013 8:38 pm

the assassin's tale part 1

Hara once again found herself walking through the underground corridors of the guild hall. After finishing her mission she figured that she deserved some food. Usually she went straight to the Guildmaster but you saw the master on his time, not yours. When she got to the mess hall she walked up to the cook.

“Hara” he said nodding in greeting. “Got some venison.”
“That sounds quite nice” Hara replied. It always hurt when she spoke. She got her meal and sat down at a nearby table. She was enjoying here meal as much as she could when someone slammed a fist down in front of her. A challenger? In the guild there were several ways one could advance. Success on missions, theft of valuables used to fund the organization, dirt on public officials. However the most popular way was defeating other members of the guild. Hara looked up to see a young man scowling at her.

“I hear you're one of the elites of the guild.” The boy said. “I dont think you can be as tough as the rumors say.”
At that Hara's eyes widened in surprise, not that the other could see that under her hood. She spoke again. “Rumors? The stories they tell of my exploits are not exaggerated in the slightest, you fool.” Before the young one could reply Hara slammed the knife edge of her hand into his throat. While he bent over chocking for air Hara rose and slammed her knee into his chest. Finishing her venison with one hand as she did.

Another man came into the room. “Hara” He called out. “The master will see you now.”
Hara nodded and left, walking through the veritable maze that was the base until arriving at the atrium. The master was there cloaked and sitting on his throne. Hara kneeled before him.
“Were you successful?”
“Yes I was.”
“Excellent Hara.” The Guildmaster replied. “Its good to know I can always rely on you to get the job done.”
Hara smiled at the praise under her hood. She never had gotten approval in the early years. Then the Guildmaster spoke again.
“Now go and rest, I will need your services again soon.”

Hara dipped her head and then left the chamber. She walked back to the hallway where the living quarters were and then kept walking until she arrived at another unmarked door. She opened the door with a key that only certain members of the guild possessed. When she walked in the room a large amorphous mass reared up before her and then...waited expectantly. Hara reached a hand out and petted the shoggoth while offering some raw meat to it with her other hand.

“Whose a good blob monster? Huh? You are. Yes, you are Shnuckems.”

The amoeba-like creature blurbed happily and took the meat. Hara spent sometime with her pet before saying her goodbye and returning to her room. It had a comfortable bed but was otherwise spartan in its furnishings, an undecorated cane leaned against a table. Hara walked over to a mirror hanging on her wall discarding her cloak as she did.

The face that looked back at her was perhaps a bit sharp to be conventionally attractive, not that Hara cared much about the fact, even grey eyes stared at her straight black hair. She then moved over to the table and divested herself of her butterfly swords, throwing knives and most of her other deadly implements. She then changed into a loose fitting outfit and went to sleep.
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Hara awoke as her door slowly creaked open. She didn’t immediately rise and kill the intruder. She was better than that. So she waited patiently until the target got closer, until they made it easy for her. The other stopped just short of her bed.

“Hara wake up. The Guildmaster wants to see you.” Hara's mood immediately soured. Seems like I don’t get to send some poor fool onto the afterlife today. She rose from her bed, hand still gripping the dagger she had concealed amongst the bedding. She motioned him out and he left. Hara donned her vestments and weapons. She left her room and headed back to the atrium, kneeling when she arrived.

“What is your bidding my master?” The Guildmaster stood from his seat and stepped down to the floor. He paced back and forth with his hands clasped behind his back as he spoke.

“Hara we have work to do. Too much is happening at the moment. The guilds united together in a league, in their efforts to thwart us they would have actually aided in an endeavor. However with the Crimson Hound's recent moves have thrown that into jeopardy, we may have to become acquainted by more than reputation soon. We've had no progress in finding the artifact that was stolen from us. This young man they call “Adam”.” The Guildmaster stopped “He is an unknown factor and a potential risk. We will deal with him soon, however at the moment we need to strike at this anti-guild faction, with any luck we can weaken them enough that they will be wiped out while destroying the guild. Attack some of their temporary leaders since this “Kavros” fool seems to have been captured by Storm and Drive and our friend Marcus. Also Hara this is an incognito mission: leave a no trace of our present. Dismissed.”

Hara dipped her head before leaving the room. If she was going to do this she would need some supplies first.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hara returned to her room. Her jian wasn't repaired yet and now she had to go out among the populace with minimal weaponry. Anti-guild morons. Hara changed into a simple top and skirt. Concealing knives under the skirt. She then tied a simple ribbon around her throat to hide the ugly scar that crossed it. She then picked up the her cane checking the blade concealed within before leaving her room.

It was time for the assassin to go to work.
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby agoraoptera on Wed Jun 26, 2013 9:03 pm

Nose twitching at the clinical smell of dried blood and sterile bandages, Eliziya strode through the Temple that was now home. Though, from what she’d heard, it might very well not be for long. It had taken some time for her to become accustomed to its chill hallways and dimly lit passages but now it was a comfort of sorts, a constant in her constantly changing circumstances.

“Aza?” Zi asked, as she opened the door; a door, ah, but there were so many doors, so many walls and halls too and-

“Friend Torvantine.” Aza Geilla, plague-warder, medicine-(wo)man, masked lady greeted the younger healer with the same detached coolness she treated everyone. Professionalism, Zi supposed, but then Aza warmed up to her after a while, as she did with the two other Friends. “Are the patients well?”

“As well as can be,” she answered as the tip of her ears began to blush red. Zi could hardly wait to see their reactions and when they woke up. “I uh, managed to get them to sleep.”

“Well enough then. Your friends are hardly the most pliable, nor are they particularly cooperative. Is anything the matter?”

“Can’t I just come to talk?” Zi asked in mock indignation.

“Surely you jest; you come to speak with me about particular matters. The casual discourse always comes later.” Aza noted drily.

Zi shrugged, smiling. “You see much. Yes. Yes, there’s something I thought that your aid would be needed for. This.” She held up the rage amulet taken from the devilite tamer and the plain wooden surface glowed dully at her touch.

“I’ve seen that around the necks of the rioters,” Aza spoke sharply, brows furrowed, “what..” she trailed off, already coming to the conclusion.

“It’s an amulet that amplifies existing anger, as far as I’ve probed, and then makes the wearer stronger and faster. It also seems to block out pain.”

“In essence, a tool to induce a berserker’s rage.”

“Yes.”

There were a few moments of silence as Aza pondered its significance. “Then.. what do you intend to do with it?”

“I don’t know, I was thinking maybe if we could adapt it, then it’d be a painkiller maybe, or if we found a way to negate it so that we can stop the rioters.. Maybe maybe maybe. There’s a lot that can be done,” Zi said, idly fingering the amulet with an easy familiarity and putting it around her neck where it knocked against her Storm & Drive pendant. “I’m not sure where to start, that’s why I wanted to ask for your opinion.”

“Take it off, friend Torvantine,” Aza asked, “I need to examine it, see if there is more to it.”

“Here.” Zi lifted the amulet off her chest without taking it off, offering it for Aza’s inspection.

“Take it off,” Aza repeated, this time not without a measure of concern. “I need to see the whole thing.”

“I found it, Aza, it’s not yours,” Eliziya frowned irritatedly. “It’s mine and I’ll do as I please-”

“Eliziya Torvantine. Please.”

Though Aza’s voice was only slightly raised above that of her usual speech, there was an iron tone in her voice that bespoke strength of will and Zi jolted as if woken from some dream.

“Sorry,” Zi rubbed her eyes. “I don’t know what came over me.”

“T’is no worry. The amulet?” Aza looked meaningfully at the wooden necklace.

“Ah, yeah,” Zi began taking it off, though her slender fingers rested upon it and hesitated for a half-moment. “Here, take it.”

"Let it not affect you unduly. Do not wear it for long, if you must at all." Aza warned, her lisp returning and she cleared her throat in an attempt for clarity.

At those words, a hint of the previous intractability manifested once more and Eliziya glared at her, amulet just about to be dropped into Aza's open palm. The little piece of wood swung in the air for a few tense moments, then Zi gave it to her.

"Thank you," Aza said quietly. Though Zi couldn't tell, the healer-mentor was greatly disquieted by the ordinarily placid girl's abrupt and sullen behaviour. For her part, at the moment the amulet left her grip, her mood lightened considerably.

"You're welcome, Aza," she said cheerfully.

Zi settled into a comfortable position, sitting on Aza's bed as the healer began to delve into the amulet's potential.

"I see it clearly. Yes, the rage spell is as you described, friend Torvantine. An overwhelming pit of hate.. the enhancement to strength, speed.." Aza began reporting her findings, "Disregard for well-being.. there is another.. a.. compulsion of sorts, urging its wielder not to set it down. The compulsion must have been what affected you."

But left unsaid was the fact that though there existed the compulsion, it was mild and of a weak nature. Aza was very certain: it should not have been enough to influence Zi so.

"Would you be amenable," Aza picked her words carefully, "if I were to keep this for the time being?"

Zi shook her head, "Sorry Aza, I've got some stuff I'm trying on it, can't interrupt it. I'll pass it to you when I'm done, alright?"

Despite Zi's carefree words, it seemed to Aza that the young mage would not willingly part with the amulet once returned. But to push the matter now was to be rude, crass, and that was not what Aza wanted to be.

"Do me a favour, friend Torvantine," Aza decided.

"Oh?"

"Would you mind giving me some of your blood? I have some hypotheses about plagues I wish to verify and I need healthy blood that is not my own for that."

"No problem," Zi offered her wrist as Aza retrieved a phial. If Aza's suspicions were right, it wasn't simply the amulet. If wrong, well, then they had an invisible problem on their hands. She needed to see Anjali Torvantine, and soon, but the strange guildleader seemed to reserve a special distaste for her and without evidence of any kind, Anjali would scorn her and then when the situation got out of hand, nobody would know why anything happened. Time, she needed time..
If you can make it better, don't make it sentient.

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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Krika on Tue Jul 02, 2013 3:01 pm

The Exam

Meanwhile, in an entirely different location......

A blast of flame exploded in a corridor, accompanied and followed by howls of pain. In the meantime, a thin figure darted away from the wispy bits of flame that lingered on the scorched stone, and darted around several corners before freezing completely still. A frantic scrabbling of his hands hid a glowing red crystal in a fold of his tattered cloak, and he paused, listening. A couple whufflings came from the direction he had come from, and started moving away, as the corridor faded into silence, save for muffled gasping of breath from the figure.

After a couple of moments, he steadied himself on a wooden staff, and let the red crystal swing free, before unscrewing the lid of a large clay pot he carried slung around his neck. He untwisted the cap, letting flickering light spring out of the top, followed by a small creature resembling either a bird crossed with a drake, made out of fire. It flapped up near the figure's head, and made a sound that would have been a chirp on a normal creature, except that it sounded like a snap of flames. The figure checked a second small item hung around his neck, several thin pieces of crystal in the shape of a loop, attached to a piece of wood. Currently about half of the crystals were glowing faintly, whilst the others were dark, aside from the reflected light.

The figure sighed, and wandered off down the corridor, the firebird following him. Well Fern, you are halfway done. Better not fail now.


-----


A thin figure in a teal robe raced through several well lit corridors, accidentally running into several other figures in red and orange robes along the way. With several mumbled apologies he continued, eventually finding his way to a particular door in the hallway, and unlatching it, somehow managing to not drop the several tomes that he was carrying with him, and all but tripped inside the room, dropping the tomes on a table just inside the door, before collapsing into a wooden chair.

The two other people in the room watched the entrance with varying levels of amusement. To his left was another guy in a teal robe, with a shock of wild red hair, and pointed eyes that glittered green with the amusement that was plastered over his face. Opposite him was a girl wearing an orange robe, her long brown hair in the slightly unkempt state of one who has spent a significant amount of time studying, with annoyance and amusement vying for attention on her face.

The guy spoke up first. "Fern, you do know that you don't HAVE to show up exactly on time? It's not like you don't have, I don't know, 4 days left to get yourself together."

Fern sighed, and began to collect his books together, getting pieces of paper out and arranged. "Yes, but I would like to get this finished as fast as possible, so that unlike you, I am not doing everything at the last minute." The other guy opened his mouth to say something else, but the girl interrupted him. "Nutter, if you're going to be snarky would you kindly do that somewhere else? I'm going to need to get through modifying a couple of my spells to minimize the aura interference, and I'm willing to bet that Fern needs my help with something."

Nutter rolled his eyes in mock exasperation. "Maire, you have four months before your exam!" Another glare from Maire, and an annoyed glance from Fern, who had almost finished setting up his notes and books, and he threw his hands up in defeat. "Fine, I'll be productive!"

"Thanks kindly." Maire replied sweetly, and turned to Fern, an inquisitive look on her face. He passed her a piece of parchment with a ritual circle sketched on it. "Well, for starters, it is going to be fire-aligned, and I am not sure that I have the proper channels for it, since the only practical one I have done so far was a lot less wild to work with." She nodded, and took the page, scanning over it pensively. "Well, for starters you might have to tweak these bits here assuming that you've got a Meldron-based array....."

Nutter sighed, and from inside a tome pulled out a much smaller book, and flipped it open to a bookmarked page, before kicking back and starting to read it.


-----


A few days later, Fern headed out of the building, following a stamped dirt pathway toward a large stone building (though not as large or extensive as the one he had exited). He looked around, a wistful expression on his face. Set on a mountainside, the immediate area consisted of several stone buildings of almost comically large proportions, set a good distance apart from each other, with the natural forested area filling in most of the spaces between them. A bit farther down the mountain was a flat area, cleared of debris, with ward-stones setting it off from the rest of the area around it. It looked like there were some people doing something down in it, possibly an Elemental class, or maybe one of the dueling clubs that kept cropping up.

He headed down toward one of the smaller buildings, with several glass-covered extremities attached to the sides. He found a side-door marked with plaque that had a flask carved into it, and slipped inside the building. He passed by several rooms filled with beakers, flasks, stoves, and other odd-shaped pieces of glass equipment, as well as up a flight of stairs before he found another door with the name "Malato Korvac" inscribed on it, and knocked on it. After an awkward minute of waiting, he sighed, and gave the door a couple resonant wacks with his fist.

This finally got a response, and a hurried "Coming!" from the room. A couple of moments later, the door opened a crack to reveal a very disheveled blonde-haired guy in a brown robe that was obviously thrown on in a hurry. His eyes widened at Fern, before he broke into a relieved grin. "Ah, Fern! Sorry about that, I was just, well, sorta occupied at the moment." Fern sighed, and rubbed his hands in his face. "But you do have them, correct?" He nodded enthusiastically. "Yes yes, do come in while I go grab them!"

He opened the door wide, gesturing to Fern to enter. With some trepidation, he stepped into the room, and gave it a cursory glance. Like the living quarters of most alchemists, it was littered with items ranging from simple glass vials to preserved pieces of animals he had probably never heard of. While Fern stepped in carefully, doing his best not to step on anything, Malato weaved through the room with the practice of someone who long ago memorized where everything was. He paused for a moment to stick his head in a side-door. "Sorry lass, business calls for a moment. I'll be back in shortly, don't worry!" He turned his head, and gave a sly wink in Fern's direction before onward. Fern sighed, and stopped trying to pick his way through the room, not wishing to intrude on whoever was in the room.

After a short minute of rummaging around in what appeared to be a storage chamber, Malato emerged carrying a small sack that jingled as he handed it over to Fern, who checked inside, confirming that it carried about a dozen vials of varying colored substances. "They're all there, and marked. Stink bombs, a restorative, couple of flash-bangs.....everything you asked for." Fern nodded, and hooked the bag to his belt, and pulled out small purse, and counted out a couple of coins, depositing it in Malato's outstretched hand. "Pleasure doing business with you Mal. Now, if you do not mind, I will be leaving you to your...business."

Mal winked. "Oh, there's no business here. Just delicious, wonderful pleasure..."

Fern fled the room post-haste.


-----


The next day, Fern was once again running through the corridors, which thanks to the early hour weren't very populated, which had the fortunate effect of not giving him many chances to run into someone. Unlike his similar trip of a couple days ago, he was dressed in a very practical robe, with a red crystal hanging around his neck, and a cloak that, like his robe, had multiple pockets sewn into it, many filled. He carried a simple wooden staff with him, whilst his belt had multiple pouches attached to it. His steps took him down multiple flights of stairs, eventually emerging into the lowest level of the building, where he arrived in a small anti-chamber, with a wooden door that was decorated with ornate drawings, which were easily recognizable as the achievements of the greatest archmages of the past. To the left of the door, Maire and Nutter were standing.

Fern paused, leaning against a wall, catching his breath after his frantic run. "You know, neither of you had to show up this early." Maire rolled her eyes good-naturedly. "Why wouldn't we be here? This is your first Exam, and we both want to wish you good luck in person!" "Except that I wanted to sleep in..." Nutter started, before being cut off by a glare from Maire. "..but yes, we do want to wish you good luck."

Finally catching his breath, Fern stood up and stretched, working out the last kinks that his reckless run hadn't gotten loosened up. "Thanks guys. I hope I do well as well. I mean, failing wouldn't be bad of course, but it would be embarrassing." Nutter ruffled Fern's hair, grinning at his nervous friend. "Do it right or don't do it, right?" "Something like that," he replied, grinning. Nutter continued to ruffle his hair, necessitating a duck to get out of reach, which put him into a vice-like hug from Maire. After a couple of moments of gasping for breath on his part, she released him and glared directly into his eyes, though the soft smile on her face showed a different side. "You can do this. Don't fail." He smiled back. "Oh, I think I will be fine."

Nutter ruined the moment with a well-timed retching noise. "Alright, mushy stuff out of the way, so you'd better get going. I presume there IS a reason you were running, after all." Nodding, Fern headed toward the door, dodging a last grab at his hair by Nutter, and stood before it for a moment, taking a couple of deep breaths, before reaching forward and pulling the door open. After a quick glace back at his two friends, he stepped through the door, pulling it shut behind him.

Nutter yawned, and stretched his arms, turning to leave. "Whelp, I'm off to get more sleep. Feel free to wait out here if you want to." He left the room, followed a moment later by Maire.


-----


The room he entered in requires some description. It was circular, about a hundred feet wide, with 13 pillars about 10 feet out from each of the wall, each one decorated with motifs related to a different school of magic, with lighting crystals built into the designs providing illumination to the room as a whole. They each shot upward toward the domes ceiling, whose center was maybe 150 feet up. The dome itself had a large mural made of colored glass in the shape of the college's symbol, which had a tunnel behind it cut through the bedrock of the mountain to the surface, allowing the sun at its current position to shine perfectly down it to light up the design. This also had the added benefit of shining the light in Fern's eyes, making it difficult to make out the three black-robed figures standing around the center of the floor. As he approached them, the stepped back to allow him to reach the center, and see that a stairway was cut into the floor, winding down into darkness.

"Fern, you have been judged worthy to take the exam." the one on the right began. "This exam has produced the highest quality of mages for generations. Every mage that has graduated from the college has passed this exam. While you are in no true danger, you may very well be injured, or incapacitated. However, barring extreme danger, the test cannot end until the full 6 hours have elapsed. Do you understand what it is that you are about to attempt?" Fern gulped, and responded with "Yes."

The one on the left began to speak. "The purpose of this exam is two-fold. Firstly, it is a chance to show that you know the practical skills to use your magic in a real-world environment. Secondly, it is a chance to show your ability to innovate spells beyond what you have been taught, and put them to use. Do you understand what is required of you?" Fern nodded, and responded with another "Yes."

The one in the middle finally spoke. "During the exam, you will be confined to the tunnels under the college. All exits have been sealed, and you will only be able to leave once the full duration of 6 hours has passed. You will have to survive in the tunnels until then, under your own skill. No assistance will be offered, except in a life threatening situation, which has not occurred in over 60 years." The figure stepped forward, handing him a necklace, on which was attached a small loop with a dozen crystal disks threaded onto it. "This will mark your passage of time. When they are all lit, and only then, the door will open again. Do you understand your task?" Fern swallowed and managed to squeak out a "Yes."

They all looked at each other, and then back and Fern. This time, they all spoke as one. "Then are you ready and prepared for the test?" Fern forced himself to nod, and say the final "Yes", which came out with more conviction that perhaps he felt. The three figures stepped backwards from the stairway into darkness, and following the obvious signal, he started his way downward.


-----


He reached a large landing, in square room maybe 15 feet on a side. On the other side of the room, a dark door yawned. There were a couple of glowing crystals set in the walls that illuminated the room, but the light didn't extend past the doorway, giving the impression of a simple wall of blackness.

The landing was certainly big enough for the summoning and binding. Probably an intentional deal on their part, Fern realized. This was a place for a mage to limber up, and get everything at the ready. And for him, at least, to perform his summoning. Pulling out a piece of chalk and a paper with a carefully drawn ritual circle on it, he began scribing it onto the floor.

About 10 minutes later, he finished the triple-check, and placed the components (bird bones and feathers, as well as a small, magically sensitive gem) into the center, and stepped back to look over the finished product. It was composed of two main circles, the inner one about a two feet across, while the outer one extended the radius by about a foot. While lines from one didn't crossover into the other, they did share a border, and several intersection points with the lines inside each circle on that border.

And now it was time to perform the summoning.

He sat down into a mediation pose at the edge, and began breathing slowly, rhythmically, slowly moving his perceptions out of his body and focused inward, toward his center. Deep in there rested a glowing feeling, an aura that made his body tingle as he reached for it. He began drawing on it, first in a trickle, slowly thickening into a stream that he directed toward his hands, letting them be filled with power. It hurt, almost like he'd stuck his hands into ice-cold water, but he persisted, letting the power hit the bursting point, before he opened his eyes, and slapped the edge of the circle.

His power released into the circle, causing the lines to burst into a bright white light. Inside the center, the red gem, activated by the sudden influx of magic into the area burst into flame. The flames swirled over the bones and feathers, beginning to burn the feathers and scorch the bones. He felt the magic settle over the construct, as it formed the initial array. After a minute of mental checking, he was satisfied that it was fully formed. Now to give it the push.

"Ik roep de geest Nethis! Door mijn kracht, en door mijn naam en de naam van Nethis, roep ik uw geest te vormen! Door mijn naam van Calan Markovitch, ik uw geest roepen naar me, Nethis!" The burning flame in the middle sudden boosted in intensity, consuming the bones and any remnants of feathers in a flash. A large piece of flame split off from the main fire, and shot upward a few feet in the air, where it hovered, floating. The red gem crack and shattered, the flame it produced going out.

"Door mijn kracht en mijn naam en de naam van Nethis, Ik bind je aan mij! Door mijn naam van Calan Markovitch, door mijn macht, Ik bind Nethis om mezelf!" The floating flame sudden convulsed (if flame could be said to convulse). Magical energies flowed around it, pushing it inward and concentrating it into a less-ragged and shifting shape. He felt a burning sensation on his wrist, but he ignored it.

"Nethis, Ik Calan Markovitch bel je naar mijn kant! Door mijn naam en mijn macht, roep ik jullie op mij! Nethis Ik bel je!" He felt a sudden release, and a surge of power left him, draining into the circle. The glowing lines flared up in intensity for a split second, before disappearing entirely, leaving slight scorch marks but otherwise no sign that they had been there. The flame condensed down into a tiny brilliant spark, before exploding outward into roughly egg-shaped mass of flame, maybe a foot in length. Two wing-like structures sprouted from the sides of it, and two streaks of flame at the larger end darkened to bright blue fire.

Fern collapsed onto the ground, breathing heavily as he felt energy start to creep back into his body. Summonings and Bindings were always power-heavy affairs, and he'd need a short rest before he felt ready to head into the tunnels. He sat back against a wall, and looked up at his new Summon. It flew around above his head, very much reminiscent in behavior like a bird, albight one made entirely out of fire. After a couple circles above him, it flopped down onto the stone, where it rested. Fern closed his eyes, and felt back inside him for his power. Finding the spot, he felt a connection extending out from it, a connection that as he traced it back, flooded with fire magic.

He opened his eyes and looked at his wrist, where an odd black tattoo consisting of intricately lined circular segments, almost like bracelets tattooed onto him. The area between the first and second was colored a dark, almost brown green. The space between the second and third was now a brilliant, bright red. He grinned, looking at the firebird sitting on the ground in front of him. "Well Nethis, nice to meet you." The firebird chirped, and took off again, leaving behind a scorched spot on the stone where it had been resting. "Well, that is good to note. Don't let it touch anything flammable." He touched a wide-mouthed stone flask attached to his belt. It seemed that it wouldn't be dead weight anymore.


-----


He started down into the tunnels, with Nethis flitting around his head, providing a torch-like flickering light to the steady red provided by the gem around his neck which he held up in front of him. When he was a couple steps down the tunnel, he heard a grinding sound, and spun around to find a stone door sliding shut on the room he had just left. It ground shut with a solid finality, leaving him off in a dead-end tunnel. "No turning back now...." He turned back to the tunnel in front of him, and moved onward, carefully watching the tunnel for anything that could jump out at him. A couple of minutes down the tunnel, and another corridor split off from it, leading off into the darkness. He looked around at them, checking both of them, and with a shrug, headed down the new corridor.

Sometime later, he was still walking through the corridors, without much having happened. Two of the crystals had lit up, so he knew he was making progress (six crystals and six hours to survive meant that one crystal likely equaled one hour of time spent in here). He'd brought enough food and water to survive, so he wasn't really wanting for that, although he would need to have a good meal afterwards. He could only hope that the crystals would help him find the way out, since he was well and truly lost by now. He'd tried backtracking a few times, but he'd run across intersections that he hadn't passed on the way forward, and after some trial and error, he had given up.

He turned another corner, and was about to continue onward when he heard a faint sound. A sound that was not caused by him or Nethis. He froze in place, ears straining. The sound approached him, getting slowly louder. He slowly turned around, too look behind him.

There were three eyes peering out of the darkness at him. Not three pairs - three eyes, one placed slightly higher than the other. A low growl emerged from the darkness, and the creature slowly emerged into the light of his crystal. It looked like a wolf covered in dark grey, almost black, fur were it not for several details, which Fern's mind very quickly picked up on as he scrambled to figure out what to do. Firstly, it had a third eye, placed in it's forehead between two regular ones. Secondly, it's paws appeared to be much closer to graspers than paws. And finally....it's mouth was triangle, with two sets of lower jaws, placed opposite each other. And it was open, having stopped growling, but there was a slight by steady drip of saliva coming from it's mouth.

Both entities stared at each other in silence, waiting to see what the other would do. Nethis flapped nervously, if it could be said to be nervous, next to Fern. A long minute passed as they looked at each other. Fern took a slow, careful step backwards, stepping away from the creature. The creature took a step forward, keeping the distance between them. Fern took another careful step back. The creature took a step forward. Fern took another step back. The creature took a step forward.

This obviously wasn't working. Fern considered his options. He could try and run away, but without some sort of head-start, the creature would be able to catch him really easily. And he really do much right now for fear of breaking the stand-off, and causing it to jump at him. He scrabbled around in his pockets for a moment, before grabbing a bit of jerky. He carefully put his hand out in front of him waving the bit of jerky in front of the creature's eyes. One of the eyes tracked the hand, while the other two stayed firmly on him. I hope this works.... With a quick flick of his hand he tossed the piece of jerky past the creature, into the darkness. The creature shifted it's head so that one eye could follow the path as it fell, but the opposite eye remained fixed on Fern.

Frowning internally at this failure, he considered his next options. He started rooting around for another few pieces of jerky, when Nethis, who he had previously been ignoring, made a little diving swoop just a little too close to the side of his head. Fern reflexively jerked away from the sudden heat, an act which took his eyes off of the creature for a split second. The creature leaped at him.

Several things happened very quickly. Fern dived to the side, trying to avoid the diving creature. Nethis, on the other hand, spurred by Fern's adrenaline rush and fear bleeding over the connection between them, dived at the creature. Fern barely managed to avoid the creature's dive, which tore part of his cloak off, and scrambled to his feet. The creature in the meantime, was about to launch another assault, when Nethis dropped into it's face, beating it's wings onto the creature's face. The creature shied away from the firebird, screeching in what appeared to be pain as it scrabbled against it's face, trying to keep the firebird away from it's eyes.

Not wanting to push his luck, Fern ran, mentally calling to Nethis to follow him, which the firebird did after a moment. He dashed down the corridor away from the creature, which didn't seem to be following him immediately, as a quick look behind him showed. Fortunate for him, at least, since he didn't fancy his chances of trying to outrun them.

It was about ten minutes when he stopped running, and leaned against the wall, breathing very heavily. Up until now, he'd had it pretty easy, and for that he was thankful. Now he'd have to try and watch for these creatures, and make sure he wasn't taken by surprise, because in quantities larger than one, that would pretty much be the end of him. He would need to be prepared, or at least ready.

First things first - he needed to check something. He grabbed a large jar that had been bouncing around on his waist, and unclipped the lid, and looked up to where Nethis was currently hovering near the ceiling. "Come here you!" He gestured at the open lid. After a moment of was appeared to be confusion, Nethis dived down to the jar, and after another moment of examining the opening, dived inside. Fern fastened the lid on the jar, and then left it alone, watching the jar and listening for anything that could be nearby. After a minute, he unfastened the lid. "Alright, out you." The firebird flew out of the jar, seemingly relieved at being released. Experiment success. Normally, he'd consider Nethis a bit of a hazard, given that it was a firebird, but now he knew that he could successfully hide it, which would be helpful.

A short time later, after continuing down the corridors, he heard the growling again, this time coming from both in front of and behind him. Great. Just great. He rooted around in his pockets, and pulled out a small stink bomb. Hopefully this would be helpful. Hefting it, he considered which way to run. Either way would have him trying to get past at least a couple of those creatures so.....left it would be. He tensed up, checking left and right as he waited for the creatures to catch up with him.

Once again, the first things that he saw were the triple eyes. This time, however, there were maybe 4 or 5 sets, and on both sides of him. The creatures slowly paced into the very edge of the light, all staring at him and growling. Revising his direction to right (there was one more creature to his left than his right), he took a deep breath, and prepared to violate common sense and dive straight toward the things that wanted to hurt him.

Fortunately for leaving his common sense unviolated, he was beaten to the punch as two of the creatures on his left jumped him. Not quite expecting this, he instinctively rolled with the impacts, managing to retain some level of control over his position. The creature's claws managed to grab a hold of his cloak, ripping it some as he tore it away, but otherwise avoiding them hitting fleshy bits. He punched one as he rolled, landing a lucky hit on the jaw of one of them, causing it to scrabble back for a moment in pain. Taking advantage of this, he launched himself from the ground into a sprint at the now weakened left side, smashing the stink bomb down behind him.

The stink bomb cracked, releasing a small cloud of greenish mist that stank to high heaven. The creatures in the immediate vicinity of the explosion shied away from the smoke, trying to stay away from the slowly expanding cloud. A moment later, Nethis, slightly behind it's Summoner's thought process, flew past them, diving through the upper edge of the cloud in the process.

The result was instant and bright. The gas was apparently very flammable, and it showed this property with explosive results. Fern stumbled and swore at the sudden burst of heat and flames that blossomed behind him, whilst the creatures panicked and ran, two of them slightly on fire from being at effectively ground zero. Fern skidded around a corner, and pressed flat, listening for incoming paws. Hearing none, he peaked around the corner, and ducked slightly as Nethis blithely flew around the corner as well. The flames having disappeared, he looked up at Nethis, and then down at the corridor. The firebird, apparently either unaware or uncaring of what had just happened, fluttered around near the ceiling.

He took a moment, and went back to the site of the explosion, keeping an ear out for the creatures, even if he doubted they'd be coming this way for a while. He knelt down and examined the scorched floor, before looking back up at Nethis as a slow grin emerged on his face.

"Well. This is interesting to know."


-----


And so the time passed, in a blur of running, dark corridors, and the occasional fiery explosion. He hadn't checked the crystal timepiece much during the first couple of hours, but now it felt like he kept glancing at it every couple of minutes, waiting for the last crystal to go out. As much as he was managing to survive, and use the various tools and materials he had brought with him to good effect, he was running low on them - he'd used up the flash-bangs and the restorative draught, and only had three of the stink explosives left.

The creatures, whatever they were, had become more dangerous now. They had learned his tricks, and were getting a lot harder to fight off. He had almost lost his left hand after one of them had noticed him about to throw a flash bang, and tried to get it away from him, while another time they had waited for him to waste a stink explosive, and then chased him after the blast died down. He'd gotten a deep cut on his arm that time, and he suspected that they might be tracking him easier after the good sample of his scent said blood had provided. Certainly, their ambushes had seemed to become slightly more dangerous after the fact.

The crystal timepiece suddenly glowed brightly, before fading into a pale glow. Confused, he picked it up and examined it. As he turned it over, the brightness alternately faded or grew brighter, at most reaching the brightness it was at before, but going down to no light at all. After some experimentation, he determined that the brightness depended on which direction it pointed on a horizontal circle. Pointing in a certain direction (currently into a wall) made it glow the brightest while the opposite direction made it completely dark. His best guess was that the light pointed him in the direction of the exit. It certainly made sense given that he needed to get out of here somehow, but finding paths that followed it would be tricky, especially if the creatures realized what he was trying to do and blocked him. Still, it was good to have a set goal.

And as it turned out, whether through luck or otherwise, there seemed to be a pretty direct set of tunnels that led where the crystal was telling him to go. Still, it was not long before he heard the growling of the creatures behind him, a sound that encouraged him to try and run faster. Hefting one of his stink explosives, he smashed it behind him, hoping to discourage them from the pursuit. While they did seem to be slowed down, they did not break off the chase. He skidded around a corner, and saw light up ahead, glorious light. Unfortunately skidding around a corner did no do wonders for his speed, and before he could start down the final corridor, he was smashed into the ground as one of the creatures tackled into him.

He felt the creature's claws dig into his back, although he didn't think it was enough to cause serious damage. He tried to roll over, to dislodge the creature somehow, but this was hampered by another one that bit into his arm and pulled, apparently trying to tear it off. The resultant surge of pain sent higher doses of adrenaline through his system that gave him the strength to tear his arm away from the creature's mouth, though he felt white-hot lines of pain as the teeth scored deep cuts in his arm. The creature on his back hand managed to tear off his cloak, but the sudden movement on his part dislodged it's grip on him, enough that he finally managed to roll over a little. As he did so, he heard the noise of pottery breaking, followed immediately by a whispered "Ohhh boy."

The creatures all flinched back as the greenish smoke of the stink explosives began to leak out from underneath Fern, who clamped his mouth shut as he staggered to his feet, managing to achieve enough balance to stand up, and checking the creatures, saw Nethis flapping around one's face, harassing it. Unfortunately, the moment it took him to see this was also the moment it took another one of the creatures, who apparently wasn't bothered as much by the stink, to tackle him to the ground for the second time in under a minute.

It growled in his face, giving him a face-full of hot stinky air and drool, in addition to the growing stench from the stink explosives. The creature leaned in, and he closed his eyes as he prepared to get a face-full of teeth. Oh gods oh gods oh gods not now not now.... With what he fully expected to be his last breath, he screamed.

"NETHIS! DO SOMETHING!"

The firebird, reacting to the sheer terror and energy that arced down the connection between it and it's Summoner, left the creature it had been bothering, and dived straight toward the one on top of Fern. As it dived, it began to burn brighter, the the very center of it's body being driven to the edge of blue flame. It dived onto the back of the creature straddling Fern....and exploded into a brilliant fireball the width of the corridor, igniting the stink explosive to further increase the size of the explosive.


-----


The three figures stood in the same large chamber as before, watching the entrance. The six hours had been up for a good 20 minutes now, and they hadn't gotten any signal that the student had been rendered unconscious, so for the moment they simply stood, patiently waiting for Fern to emerge. If he emerged.

He did emerge. Staggering up the steps, barely able to stay on his feet, his cloak mostly gone, and what was left of it was on fire along with various pieces of clothing and his hair, several deep cuts on his arms dripping blood onto the floor, and with what appeared to be bite marks on his head. Staggering to a halt in front of the three figures with the swaying air of one who was only staying upright through a combination of extreme effort and luck, he gave them the best grin he could under the circumstances.

"So this means I passed, yes?"


-----


Nutter and Maire visited him in the healing halls after the healers had pronounced him no longer in any immediate danger. Both of them were obviously torn between congratulating him, and fussing over him (Nutter leaning toward the first, Maire the second). After the obligatory "Are you alright?" "I am going to be in here for at least a week, what do you think?" exchange, Nutter asked the loaded question.

"So you passed on your first Exam. I told you there was nothing to worry about!" Fern rolled his eyes at this, whilst Maire punched Nutter in the arm. "Yes, and I am in the healing halls for a week just to recover. I am fairly sure this qualifies as 'something to worry about'." "Yes, but..." "Nutter, hush up and let him rest on his success." The larger guy threw up his hands in the face of Maire's glare, but nonetheless hushed up. "See, I did say I thought you were capable of doing it on your first try, right?" "You also said that about yourself." "Well, there's always an element of luck involved, isn't there?" "Obviously Fern stole yours." Nutter dodged the reactionary punch, and grinned, reaching out to pretend-ruffle the air a couple of inches above Fern's head.

"Good on you Fern, good on you." He grinned and nodded. "I am a fully-fledged Summoner. Now I actually have to figure out what to do with myself." "Well, you could always stick around, learn more and maybe give Nutter here the help he needs to pass..." "...or you could not be boring and go and see the world!"

Fern grinned and relaxed back into his bed. He'd find something to do, of that he was certain.
Last edited by Krika on Mon Aug 12, 2013 7:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Krika
>Narra has tiny jerk people in her socks.
>We are affirming our collective jerkhood by committing genocide on them.
Guyshane
>I'm going to read the logs and pray that that sentence makes more sense in context
>No
>No it does not
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Blurred_9L on Fri Jul 05, 2013 11:52 pm

(Timeline placement: Immeadiately after Quest 28.

Not yet

”The badge shall lead my way” he had hear one of them say the first night after the riots started. Back then, he questioned the reason the low ranking members of the assassins guild would have to blindlessly follow something that would get them killed sooner or later.

”I choose not my weapon nor the victim it strikes” some of them had confessed after casually questioning them how they managed to be enlisted in the group of criminals that appeared to have risen up from the dust that filled the streets of the city.

”No man escapes.” The words couldn’t probably make any more sense than they did right now. Darren looked at the man in front of him, eyes holding no emotion whatsoever. His own stolen badge glimmered, reflecting the light coming from the nearby pub. The way back hadn’t taken him as much time as before and even though he was out late, he didn’t feel tired at all. ”Must be a side effect” Darren shrugged, amused.

“It’s time to move out.” Darren simply said to the other man, imitating the emotionless gaze of the assassin in front of him. He looked back at him, his expressionless gaze slightly turning into a scowl.

“Who?” he simply answered, the man’s eyes darting to the right and then to left. Was he suspicious about Darren? Perhaps, but he wouldn’t be giving up so easily.

“The badge speaks. My sword? It slices.” Darren held the man by the shoulders and looked at him in the eyes, trying to maintain himself from looking any different than the assassin. Even so, he knew that as hard as he tried, right now the only thing that was inside his own mind was the anger that moved to do the very thing he was now doing. Maybe the man could see his anger and because of that, he would be able to tell he was pulling his leg. Darren was ready to jump back and pull a knife or unsheathe his sword if it came to that. He was scared, but the anger blinded him. The anger made him stronger. “The badge speaks.” The man answered.

“The City Guard is having trouble keeping the anti-guild in check. Go help. Don’t kill, intercept.” The other man’s expression changed into a scowl again. But he didn’t say anything, he simply nodded before bowing. “My blade rests.”

The process repeated itself several times throughout the course of the night, every time, the assassins would stay silent before agreeing on what Darren said, saying some cryptic stuff before returning to their usual activities. ”These guys really are incomprehensible” Darren thought, remembering what Marcus had said hours ago, if there was anything that he had gotten right, it was that.

As the sun began rising in the horizon he prepared himself to go back to the guild building, not really sure why he would go back there. As he slipped through some alleys in order to avoid the members of the anti-guild faction, he heard a faint voice from behind telling him to stop.

“...alt...Halt!” it said. Darren turned, slightly confused, to see a member of the City Guard looking back at him, sword of him and an expression of annoyance on his face. ”Nestor...” Darren thought as he recognized the man in front of him, unfortunately, as the light of the morning sun still wasn’t enough and both the shadows of the alley and the cloak covering his head prevented him from recognizing Darren. “You’ve been all over the place, haven’t you? Just what are you up to? The way you move... You’re too much like those anti-guild idiots. Mind explaining yourself.

Darren moved his head side to side. “I’m afraid I still have some things to take care of, perhaps another time?” He smirked, before dashing to the left, jumping over crates and other obstacles in his way, the guard following close behind, despite the weight of his armor. ”I had forgotten how annoying you guys were.” Darren thought as he turned around a corner leading to another empty alley.

“You... you’re not one of the normal ones, eh? You’re even more annoying than those idiots.” Nestor said to him as they faced off once again. Darren unsheathed his sword, and waited for the guard to strike. What came his way was not a sword strike, but rather, words:

“That’s mine... or was.” The guard started speaking. “You’re off getting everyone into trouble again aren’t you?”

“Do I ever do any different?” Darren snarked back.

“I gave you that sword to defend yourself and others, not to stir trouble around the city. If you keep this up...”

“That’s what I’ve been doing... or trying to do, anyway. But I’m not the only headstrong person in this city... or rather, floor, but that’s a completely different matter.” Darren answered bitterly, he could feel the anger starting to rise up inside of him again. “I’m sorry but I still have things to do. I must go” After saying that, Darren dashed away from Nestor, who didn’t bother in pursuing him anymore.

“Man, everybody’s gone nuts in this city.”
Why should we do the right thing?
-Well... because it's the right thing to do, there's no other good reason.

Am I a bad guy trying to be good, or a good guy trying to convince himself that he's not the bad guy?
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Guyshane on Sat Jul 06, 2013 5:47 am

The assassin's tale part 2
note: takes place partly during quest 28 and partly the night after

Hara had already done her recon on the targets. Everything she could possibly need to know to kill these fools. She couldn't believe that these were the people that the Crimson Hound had allowed the mob to elevate to positions of authority. Had the guilds known how weak these fools were the rebellion wouldn't have lasted more than a single night. It amazes me that they have even one guild on the run. We would have only allowed these rats to gather so we could crush them in one move. The assassin shook her head, she didn't have time to ponder the movements of her adversaries. She had a job to do. Hara walked off to the location of her first target.

------------------------------------------------------------

From the streets she watched the progress of her first target. One of the guards who abandoned their posts. Betrayal of a leader, what utter nonsense. Normally Hara did not gain heightened satisfaction from any particular kill (which is not to say her kills were not satisfying) but for traitors it was a different story. The target grew closer.

Hara began walking casually towards the wall her target was walking along. If she was too direct the risk of being noticed was too high. She had to pause for a moment as a sentry walked by before resuming her stroll. As she reached the bottom of the stairs she checked the progress of her target and found it to be to her liking. She climbed up to the wall and followed behind her target for a brief moment until he was standing on the wall above an empty alleyway.

That was when she struck.

Moving up behind him quickly Hara delivered a knife hand strike to the back of his neck. In many cases that alone might have been enough to kill. But Hara wasn’t in the business of taking chances. Grabbing the man by his hair she used his weight to send him staggering off the wall and onto the pavement below. The killer looked over the wall to check her handiwork, the spreading pool of blood told her everything she needed to know.

The assassin poured a canteen of water over the wall where the man had fallen. By tomorrow morning it would freeze over providing an explanation for the target's death.

Hara moved on.

----------------------------------------------------------------


The assassin sat across the bar from her next target. A logistics officer who was too fond of her drinks. This one will be simple enough to deal with.

There was some kind of drinking game going on amongst some of the patrons. The target was firmly in the lead. Somewhere in the back of her mind Hara was both amazed and frustrated that the officer could drink that much without simply dropping over dead.

However fate was not so kind and thus Hara actually had to do the work herself. The target was almost out of drinks. Hara paid for two mugs of ale and carried them over to the woman slipping a fatal dose of poison in each beverage. Hara set the drinks down in front of the drunkard who quickly down both of them. She retreated to just outside the pub and waited a short time before hearing a loud crash and exclamations. Looking through the window she saw her target frothing at the mouth. Hara nodded and left.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The next man was practically begging to be killed. What nonsense is this? He walks alone at night in the slums of the city? Improbable as it seemed this was the case, the target apparently oblivious to the danger he was in. Hara hadn't quite believed the information she had discovered but here was the proof clear as day. This was so easy she wasn't sure it wasn't a trap.

She simply went around a back alley to cut him off before executing her plan. Pulling a knife concealed beneath her skirt she stepped up to the man and stabbed him like a madwoman. The man cried out but there was no one around to hear him. Hara had stabbed him dozens of times by now and he was dead but her job wasn’t finished yet. Returning her knife to its sheathe she pulled out her slender sword from within the cane and stabbed the corpse even more before taking all his valuables with her.

Thus the target looked like the victim of a mugging while the assassin gained extra money to use in her endeavors.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Hara stopped outside the building where her last target was currently stationed. She walked closer to hear what all the fuss was about. Apparently the man causing the fuss had just come back from some sort of mission.

“They're holed up in this temple out in the forest, we need to gather together everyone who can be spared. If we do I'm sure we can take down Storm and Drive once and for all. Hara's heart froze for a moment. Oh no. The the assassin came to her senses and shook her head to clear out the cobwebs. Where did that thought come from? Just because Storm and Drive could be useful and Marcus is a potential recruit doesn't mean I should be worried.

Nevertheless the man was silenced with a knife to the back that no one saw as Hara walked towards her last target.

It wasn't a permanent fix.

But it would buy them a little time.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

And so Hara followed the man back to the insurgents base. These anti-guild leaders had not even been a challenge for her skills. This last man had fallen for the oldest trick of all: a promise of a night together.

It would be a night to remember.

The man opened the door to his chambers, ushering her in and locking the door behind them. The chambers were quite nice but that wasn’t what she was here for. The man walked past her to pour her a drink. When his back was turned Hara unsheathed her blade. The target spun around in surprise but didn't have time to react as the trained killer drover her blade into his heart and twisted before pulling the sword out of the man. She dragged the body over into the bed, hoping that would add some more time before the murder was discovered.

Once she had finished she felt the pull of another mind reaching out to her's. “Good job Hara” The Guildmaster said in her head. “Now come back home.”

“Yes sir.”
I say we nuke it from orbit...its the only way to be sure.
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Guyshane on Sat Jul 06, 2013 10:29 pm

We are so screwed
note: Sorry about the double post

It would be so nice if we could catch a break for a change. Marcus thought to himself as he ran further into the temple. “Anjali!” He shouted. “Get out here! We’ve got a serious situation on our hands! Enough napping!”

“Well, I guess there goes-” Julius woke up to the sight of Anji, laying on the same bed as him. “Okay...” There was no time to react, however, as Marcus’ shouting and the apparent emergency had also woken her up.

Anji's eyes cracked open, wincing at the bright torchlight and the loud voices that woke her from a deep sleep.

"Jules? What's with all the-" her sentence broke off as she remembered everything that happened over the past few days, culminating in- oh boy, Collecting herself, she avoided eye contact with the former guard as she said, "What's all the ruckus for, Blondie? I was attempting to get a little sleep."

Marcus looked at her wild-eyed. “Not the time for jokes. We don’t even have time for you to call me crow-brained after I give you my bad news. I just had to fight off a group of those anti-guild idiots with Darren. One of them got away.”

“That’s certainly one way to wake up...” Julius mused, listening to the news. “Anji... I, I guess we should talk later?”

Marcus looked at Julius desperately. “Dammit Captain if you want to ask her out: Do it after we get away.”

“Fair enough. Only, how? Where to? How many of us are already assembled? What’s the opposing force? Or do you simply suggest we rush blindly through the woods?” Julius took a deep breath. “We have to move, yes, but running without a plan would be worse than sitting out a siege, provided we seal off most of the temple. You mentioned Darren... Any chance of help coming?”

“Debatable at best.” Marcus replied. “I sent him off but there’s no guarantee he’ll listen to me and even if he does we might not get enough reinforcements or they might get here too late. As for holing up here do I need to remind you what Kavros was doing when i caught him?”

"Oh will the two of you go eat crow?" Anji said, face pale. "Marcus, stop panicking, you're giving me a bloody headache. Julius... just, later... okay?" Steeling herself, she took a few deep breaths, pinching her nose. "Okay, we need to get everything moving. Start preparing to leave. Take only what you can carry. We're going to town."

Marcus nodded. “Your headache isn’t actually a result of me panicking. Take this both of you.” The warrior put down a bundle of leaves next to them. “It should help clear your heads.”

“Thanks.” Julius tested his left arm, picking up the leaves carefully. It was functional, but slow, still recovering. I guess this will have to do... At least I can use it, anyway.

"Well, what are you lot waiting on, invitations? Let's get going!" Anji said, avoiding eye contact with both men as she left the room.

Marcus threw the plant at the back of her head. “Herbs! Now! I’m not even sure what Zi slipped you two to get you to sleep.”

Anji growled, snatching up the plants from the floor, "stupid herbalists... Giving me random plants... Should be made into compost..

-----

Julius and the others arrived in the hall where Kavros was being kept. If they were to move, then something had to be done about the prisoner, however, what they saw there just told them that the decision had already been made for them.

Kravos was still in his binds, but completely soaked in blood. His throat was cleanly slit.

“Dammit.” Julius jumped into guard, drawing his sword and looking for the assailant. “Did any of them stay behind?”

“No they were all running for the hills by the time we were done. I suppose one of them could of done this while I was busy fighting the other. Or maybe someone just snuck in here after the fact.” The soldier glared at the scene in front of him with undisguised anger. “Either way I know who to blame. I swear I’m gonna kill every last one of those assassins when I get my hands on them.”

"Worry about them later." Anji said, "For now, get a shovel."

“This doesn’t make sense...” Julius started thinking aloud. “Why kill him?”

"Jules... We'll mess with the awkward questions once we're not about to be killed by rabid protesters."

Marcus walked off to get some shovels, muttering to himself “Stupid hired killers, trying to get us. Using us as a damn catspaw.”

“No... This is not right... They could’ve gotten us. We get blamed for his death, but they already hate us anyhow. They’d gain more by taking him back, and if someone got in here unnoticed... Dammit. Tamar, Eliziya and Hector!” Julius ran out of the door, trying to locate the others or the assailant. He stopped cold in the main entrance, staring at the doorway to the woods outside.

When the others caught up with him, they saw the same as he: Soren Kavros. Standing in full armor, with a sheathed claymore at his back, and a dripping knife on hand. Everything about him seemed different, and his eyes had an eerie glow. “I just waited to say thank you, my dear friends... I wanted to go out for a long time now, but you never took your eyes off me!”

Marcus glared at the enemy for a moment before looking over at the other two. “Okay I’m fairly sure I haven’t been drugged. Does anyone know what’s going on here?”

“I think...” Julius said, failing to give pursuit as the armored man ran off into the woods, free from his imprisonment. “That’s something we saw once before.”
I say we nuke it from orbit...its the only way to be sure.
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby agoraoptera on Sun Jul 07, 2013 10:59 am

Anji ducked through the various rooms in the temple, looking for stray objects or knives that could be useful. Her mind wasn’t really in the task at hand, however many times she tried to wrench her attention back. Kavros was dead. Or at least the idiot that had been him. And J- yeah, not now. A noise in the other room helped distract her further from her work.

Quickly pulling out the staff, she called out, "Who's out there?"

“Mistress Torvantine,” Aza replied, her half-muffled voice agitated. Strange, the healer was almost always monotonous. Her eyes were puffy with fatigue, but her gaze bespoke urgency. “T’is I. Perhaps it is timely that you find me now; perhaps not. I have something that needs be told to you.”

"Um, okay." Anji said.

“This may seem strange to you, but this is vital. I ask, how much do you know of friend Eliziya’s parents?”

Anji stiffened. What did she want? “Well enough,” she answered curtly.

“Tell me, did either of her parents behave in an erratic fashion? In a manner that suggested an imbalance of humours perhaps, or perhaps something akin to melancholia? Anything like a disease of the mind, an erosion of the wits?”

"Yes, though her mother hid it well. It was why her father became a healer." Anji said stiffly. "Though why you ask this escapes me."

“By the Never-Fading..” the masked healer swore softly, “Mistress Torvantine, I know this be much for you to believe based on my word alone, but your sister is.. she suffers from a like ailment. Her soul is wounded, her mind unsound. The rage amulet she carries about is exacerbating her condition which ordinarily would be of little issue.”

"How do you know of this? Why only tell me now?" Anji's voice rose in irritation. "Crows, you have a sense of timing."

Anji pulled out the medicine Marcus gave her, then thought better of it and slipped it back into her satchel. "How do you know?"

“She was scarce the same woman who went into the Underground with Julius and when I asked her to loan me the amulet for analysis, she reacted badly, more like one possessed than one in possession of her wits. On these fears, I..” Aza hesitated, knowing that Anji might take her words the wrong way, “I requested for some of her lifeblood to test my worries. She acquiesced and I ascertained such a possibility, hence my askance for confirmation from you. It is a hereditary condition..”

"Did she give it freely?"

“I.. told her it was to test a hypothesis I had regarding plagues. Had I asked with mine true intention stated, I fear that her condition might cause her to.. reject me out of hand. Such is the way of those so plagued," Aza ended sadly.

Anji's face darkened, "Well, you don't have to worry about me. I highly doubt that i have a genetic pool to be contaminated... As for Zi, what are your suggestions? Or did you merely intend to give me bad news and leave?"

“No, Mistress, please,” the healer said, pained, “do not take this as offense or as a slight. There is little that can be done about the underlying root, though I surely intend to search for an answer, a cure. As far as can be determined, the trigger behind this aggravation, as I have said, is the amulet. Prior to that, I can only conjecture that her mental deterioration is related to trauma, perhaps that of her kidnapping? But first, we must remove the amulet’s influence from her. I can only pray to the Never-Fading that we are not too late.”

"You will travel with us to the upper floors." Anji said, turning to leave the room.

“Travel? That then, has been what all this commotion is about? Why are we moving?” Aza blinked in confusion.

But Anji had already left.
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Lordxana0 on Sun Jul 07, 2013 7:11 pm

Elisa let out a long sigh and laid back against the rooftop. "I am so borrrrreeeeedddddddd"

Salvantas pinched the bridge of his nose and counted backwards from ten. "I realize that stakeouts aren't fun, but if we don't have proof we would just end up attacking an innocent group of people"

Elisa let out another sigh. "Why couldn't you have just brought Rose or another member of Heroes Unlimited along"

"Because you need the practice an Rose is busy hunting down anti-guild agents in the city"

Elisa grinned wickedly. "And because I would bet my last gold piece you would be too distracted" she shifted her vocal cords so her voice came out just like Rose's. "Oh Salvantas lets ignore the bust and do couple stuff"

Salvantas turned red and groaned. "I am starting to heavily regret taking you out of the underground"

"Oh calm down" her voice came out as her own again. "I am just teasing you"

He rolled his eyes and looked down at the warehouse and noticed five men carrying in a few crates. "Okay then, all we need is..." he examined the faces of the various people. "Bingo, Lorick the Rat"

"That title sucks" Elisa helpfully pointed out.

"Agreed, but he is also one of the smarter scum bags in this city, he buys weapons and then sells them to people who wouldn't normally be able to have them commissioned, anti guild, Tenzami's crew, Assassin Guild, you name it and he sells to them" Salvantas pulled out one of his throwing daggers.

Elisa smirked and stood up. "So whats the plan?"

"Get in, beat them up, tie them up, call up the City Guard later to catch them with the stuff" Salvantas looked toward her. "No killing got it?"

She rolled her eyes. "Yeah yeah" she grinned an lit her hands on fire. "Lets just get this over with shall we?" she jumped down from the roof and threw a fireball at the door of the warehouse.

Salvantas sighed. "Yes because a quiet approach is so much less effective" he jumped down next to her and entered the building, ready to take on the goons inside.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Tenzami sighed as he looked over the papers on his desk. He missed the good old days where a guy could plan an evil scheme an kill people without having to write it down on paper for storage.

Moramius entered the room and looked at Tenzami. "So there is guy an two kids killing about ten of our clients down in the main room."

Tenzami looked up at the mage. "And did you stop them?"

The mage shrugged. "The company you hang out with would do that for fun, I am not about to waste a soul to attack someone you are going to get pissed at me killing them later"

Tenzami was about the reply but he stopped himself. "Okay can't fault you on that"

The door to his office suddenly was blasted from the outside and shards of wood flew into it. Standing on the other side of where his door had once been was a rather tall man in a multicolored coat. He had a hood pulled over his head an wore a mask that appeared to have been made by piecing together two different masks. One half of it had a smiling face on it with an eye that curve up with three small eyebrows poking upward, and the other had a frown on it with an eye that curved down and had a small tear drawn under it. "Morning gentlemen"

Tenzami turned toward Moramius. "Now can you kill him"

The mage nodded and raised his hand, sending out a jet of black flames at the man.

The masked man laughed and raised his hand, stopping the flames before they touched him. He then waved his hand and Moramius went flying into a bookshelf, which then promptly fell on top of him. "A little rude to just attack your guests"

Tenzami sighed and looked at the man. "And it is also rude to kill ten of your hosts clients when they are here to pick up new product"

The masked man laughed. "Then we are both in the wrong, so lets move past this and take it from the top" the man gave a small bow to Tenzami. "I am Cloth, ringleader of the Dark Carnival"

Tenzami looked at the man blankly. "Tenzami, master of all that remains of the Black Flame"

"Impressive" the man replied. "Now then the reason I have come here today is simple, you see a man you are associated with recently left with my property, and I would very much like at some point to get it back"

Tenzami raised an eyebrow. "Property?"

"Yes, the man you know as Salvantas recently recruited a succubus into his group, it just so happens that my carnival owns that tribe of succubi, meaning he stole property from me. But seeing as you were his enemy first it is only right that I ask permission before planning my vengeance against him." Cloth tilted his head to the side. "So what do you say?"

Tenzami thought for a moment and shrugged. "Do whatever you want man"

"Splendid, have a nice day" Cloth turned around and made his way into the main room. The room was a mess, covered in blood which had been freed from the bodies of ten men and women whose corpses laid quietly on the ground. Two children made their ways around the room, using the blood to paint pictures on the walls. Not good pictures, but what one might expect from a childrens finger painting. They both appeared to be around eleven years of age and stood roughly about four foot five. They had beautiful blonde hair and pale white skin.

One was a boy, who had two small swords sheathed on his back. He wore a rather dapper looking suit an on his face wore a half mask with the same frown as the one of Cloth's face.

The girl was wearing a rather regal looking dress, and had a large club by her side, which had multiple metal spikes sticking out of it. On her face sat a half mask with a smile.

"Children it is time to go, we have plans that must be made" Cloth walked through the room and toward the door.

"Yes sir" the girl picked up her club and followed after him, a bright and innocent smile on her bloodstained face.

"On my way" the boy said in a low and sad voice, brushing himself off and smearing blood over the suit.

Waiting outside for the three was a horse drawn carriage, whose driver appeared to be dressed in rags. His face was covered in white makeup to the point he almost glowed. "Back to the carnival sir?" he asked in a neutral tone.

Cloth clapped his hands. "Yes, so much to do so little time"

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Salvantas brought down the last thug and smiled. "You did good Elisa, with a bit more practice you might even be able to start doing solo missions or working with the other members"

Elisa laughed. "Oh goody, more work" she began to grab the rope they had brought to tie the thugs up when a strange shiver ran through her. 'Probably nothing' she thought.

"Lets get this done quick, I haven't slept in a fortnight" Salvantas began his work and Elisa smiled. Yeah everything was going to be just fine.
Who you going to call? ME!
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Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2012 10:36 pm
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby eli_gone_crazy on Mon Jul 08, 2013 12:29 am

For Science!

Lori looked around carefully before ducking into the cavern system known at the Underground, armor glinting in the sun. She had avoided this sector in the past, though the samples brought to her were very interesting. It appeared that while the majority of the floors that had been explored behaved in a similar manner to the earth far below, the underground acted in a completely different manner. With the war sapping every available resource, she had decided the risks of the underground outweighed the benefits of finding something useful.

She was alone in the dungeon system. With most of the normal flora and fauna being wiped out by inconsiderate explorers, she would have to make do until at least the third level. The crystals grew at an incredible pace, their purple light illuminating the caverns in a very pretty, if slightly disturbing manner. Hearing a sound behind her, Lori lazily turned to meet the threat, and called out, “If you were thinking of killing me, get it over with. I haven’t got all day.”

There was the sound of a small cough. “I’d, ah... rather not.” A young man stepped into what passed for the light, holding a tall, two-handed staff. He smiled wryly, offering a hand to shake. “I’m sorry if I alarmed you-- I wasn’t really expecting anyone else to be down here. I just wanted to get a feel for the place.”

Lori glanced the man up and down, then, with a nod, turned back to examining the crystals, “It seemed to have been more dangerous at one point. Note the scars on these crystals. Something rather large made those, though I doubt it survived, the way these explorers react to anything.”

The man looked where she pointed. “Either it had some reason for attacking the lights, or some of those attacks flew very wide,” he observed. Trying again at a friendly introduction, he smiled. “...I’m Kevin.”

Lori made a few more notations in a notebook, then sighed, “Lori.” Turning back to the crystals, she summoned a very small bit of power, severing one of the weaker crystals from the bunch, taking care not to damage any of the others. Standing, she made her way over to a nearby waterfall. “I suppose you want me to identify guilds now?”

Kevin grinned sheepishly. “At this point, I probably wouldn’t recognize any of the guild names anyway. I’m just finding my way around... mind if I travel with you? Two is probably better than one for both of us, in a place like this.”

“Just don’t kill anything.” Lori took another sample, this time from the waterfall. “...Kevin... Kevin. I think I am aware of you. You were that knight, correct?”

Kevin held up his hands, in an almost too-perfect gesture of innocence. “No knight here! I’m just this guy, you know?”

Lori stared at him for a long moment, then nodded. “I am working for the Loreknights, conducting experiments on the flora and fauna present. You could help me by jumping into the waterfall.”

The blonde man eyed the waterfall warily. “Keen as I am to help, ma’am... my sense of self-preservation kicks in at the oddest times, and recommends I not jump to my death.”

Suddenly Lori was at Kevin’s back, and with a smile, she pushed him into the punishing water.

“Wha-- Hey!” Kevin exclaimed, his arms flailing wildly as he fell. Or, well... floated, really. The water didn’t feel quite like water. It was more viscous, or something. Rather than being beaten to death by rushing rapids, he was just carried, very slowly, downward.

About halfway down, feeling like a dolt for just sitting there, Kevin tried to see what he could do with this not-water. He reached up, and found, to his perplexity, that he could get a handhold in it, as though it were made of marzipan. Well, better than being stranded at the bottom, he thought; might as well go for it. He started climbing up the waterfall, fully aware as he climbed how ridiculous the very idea was. At last he stepped out back onto the ledge where the woman waited.

“The waterfall exhibits behavior similar to the Holy Water the Church uses. It has amazing regenerative and healing properties to the blessed, as well as toxic to the damned. Also, it appears that subject A was able to counter the castle’s gravitational forces for a time when fully submerged.” Pausing from her notes, she asked the blond man, “Now, could you breathe in waterfall, or did the substance behave in a like manner to water?”

Kevin faced the older woman. “I don’t know what most of that means,” he said frankly, his face very pale, “but please never do that again.”

“You were never in any danger.”

“You might have let me know before you pushed,” he commented weakly, before sighing. “It didn’t behave like water-- for one thing, I was never submerged in it, so breathing wasn’t an issue. I’ll just sit down for a moment.”

Lori’s eyes narrowed as she began crossing out and scribbling new notes. “Are you feeling ill? Maybe overexposure to the waterfall induces illness.” She half-muttered to herself.

“Don’t mind me,” Kevin murmured, as he leaned his staff against the wall and sat cross-legged beside it. “‘m fine. Just need to...” he trailed off, swallowing rapidly.

“Damn, I wish I was a healer.” Lori said, handing him a bottle filled with a foul-smelling liquid. “Drink that.”

Kevin rested his head back against the wall for a minute, then grasped his staff, using it to pull himself back into a standing position. He handed the bottle back, unopened, with a shaky laugh. “No, really, I’m fine. Just a bit of a wimp,” he added, with a self-deprecating smile.

“Wimps don’t refuse medical treatment.” Lori said calmly, “Now, either you drink that calming agent willingly, or I’ll push you back into the waterfall.”

“I’m not-- oh for heaven’s sake.” He snatched back the bottle, unstoppered it, and knocked its contents back. He grimaced as he passed back the empty bottle. “You have a terrible sense of humour,” he informed his companion.

“What do you mean? I have an excellent sense of humour!” Lori exclaimed. “Why yesterday I heard a hilarious dissertation on the salt content of a block of cheese.”

Kevin eyed her carefully, wondering whether to take her words at face value. He settled for saying, “...Right. Maybe we should move on?”

Lori’s response was interrupted by the sounds of yelling coming from the opposite end of the room.

“There’s two, probably more guild-scum! I saw we get them!” A group of five people, all wearing cloaks tied with an odd wooden clasp, rushed out, gripping a motley assortment of weapons.

Relieved that the awful-tasting potion had cleared his head, Kevin picked up his staff, raising it in a defensive stance.

“Hold your position.” Lori said calmly, striding to meet the strangers. “What is your business down here? The underground is off limits to civilians.”

“We’re members of the Castle Liberation Army, given the rights therein. You are trespassing on our territory. As such, we are placing you under arrest.”

Kevin cocked his head, wondering if the ‘Castle Liberation Army’ was a real thing. Judging by their organization, or lack thereof, it probably wasn’t.

Lori stood stoically in front of Kevin. Tightening her armor, she half-turned to face him, “I can hold them off. Go to the surface and head for the library. Tell the man at the gate that Lori sent you.”

“Yeah. Like hell I will,” Kevin said, not losing the cheerful, bemused look that was apparently his default expression.

Apparently impatient with the chatter, one of the “soldiers” charged at the two of them, swinging a mace. Kevin narrowed his eyes, and jutted his staff in around the woman in front of him, knocking the attack aside before it could threaten Lori. “I’m sorry,” he said with a faint smile. “Do carry on.”

Lori glared at Kevin, assessing him. Then, without speaking, she unsheathed her claymore and began to fight.

Kevin calmly stepped around the Lore Knight, bringing his staff about to engage three of the five who had them half-surrounded. She can probably handle the other two. After all, my range is better, he reasoned.

He was facing off against... a swordsman, a woman with a heavy-looking club, and the man with the mace. Well, this should be a learning experience. The sword and the mace-- well, at least he was familiar with technique for each of them. The main trick was angling his staff to block attacks coming from both of them at once. The stick spun in his hands, as he deflected slice and blow, occasionally bringing his weapon around to land a blow of his own.

The club, now... the club was trickier. Evading was all very well, but she wasn’t aiming to slice, just to hit.

---
Lori was concerned with the axe user. Well, more about the axe than the user, since the axe had some sort of edge. Taking note of the rusty edge, she swung her claymore diagonally, knocking the axe into the ground. Not pausing to allow her opponent to recover, she smashed her gauntlet into the woman’s face, breaking her nose and knocking a few teeth loose. Lori then followed through with an elbow to the side of the woman’s head, knocking her unconscious.

Her other opponent was not the type to play fair however, as a sting pricked her side. Damn throwing knives Twisting, she spotted a blur, heading up the wall. More stinging blades found their mark as Lori twisted to meet her opponent, a small boy with little armor. Growling in frustration, Lori sheathed her claymore, instead focusing her mind and pulling energy from deep within the earth. With a shudder, the wall of the cavern shook violently and the boy was sent flying into a wall, crumpling to the floor.

---

Kevin swung his staff, deflecting here, jabbing there, when crack! The club hit the fingers of his right hand, causing them to slacken their grip. Flexing the feeling back into his fingers, he tried to keep his weapon steady with just his left. The sword he blocked fine, and he was readjusting his grip when the mace, taking advantage of his temporary unguardedness, sunk into his left shoulder, sending white-hot pain through that arm.

Kevin bit down hard on his tongue, refusing to call out, as his momentum completed the swing he had started, finally disarming the swordsman. The sword skittered toward him along the floor, and he kicked it away, out of reach of his assailants.

Getting too complacent about your abilities? Bitten off more than you could chew? a voice asked in his head. You’re competent, Kevin, but you’re nothing special. If you start remembering that, maybe you can make it through this fight.

With a grunt, Kevin arranged the staff so that he was managing it with his right, and supporting part of the haft with his now-limp left hand. I’ll be damned if I don’t finish what I started, he returned, in his own head. He was going to be more careful now. More sensible. Never mind not getting himself killed; he didn’t have the strength to swing the staff wildly like he had been.

No time to mess about. Aim to incapacitate them as quickly as possible. Can’t make it a double swing, so go for two blows, or two-in-one. He angled the staff up, reaching first for the mace-wielder. The sharp weapon came up, but readying for another attack rather than to block Kevin’s. Your loss if you don’t want to play defensively, he thought, as he twisted his whole body to put enough power behind the blow. The staff connected hard with the man’s head; he reeled, but didn’t fall. Kevin blocked his next swing with the mace by batting it down with his already-upraised staff, then leaned forward to lunge with his own weapon.

It wasn’t a one-handed weapon; his aim was off. Still, it connected with something-- the clubwoman’s stomach. She lurched, her flailing club knocking against her companion, who finally went out cold.

Well... that’s two down. ...One down, he corrected himself, as the disarmed swordsman came running at him, roaring. Kevin brought his staff up in a jerky motion, cursing the pain in his left arm that prevented him from swinging it more fluidly. Letting its tip fall to the right, Kevin knocked his staff against the man in a low strike, trying to make him collide into the woman with the club.

It worked and it didn’t work. They did collide; the club went flying. Neither of them, however, was particularly harmed by the collision, apart from that, however, and both were headed right for him.

Oh, for crying out... Kevin knew that between his current inability to wield it with two hands, and the close proximity that these two were going for, his staff would be essentially useless. He propped it up, transferring it to his left hand, so he could at least use it as best he could to defend his weaker side.

Relying on the staff to ward off the worst of the blows from the woman, who had come at his left, Kevin shot out his right arm, grabbing at the man before he could complete his attack. He doubted he had the energy or the stance right now to throw a punch; instead, he pushed all his weight into shoving the man against his companion. The two heads connected with a now-familiar crack and they went down, followed in short order by Kevin who, though still conscious, slumped to the floor, cradling his injured arm.

After confirming that both of her assailants were incapable of attacking her or the strange man further, Lori turned to face Kevin, eyes narrowed, “I told you to leave, if I remember correctly.”

Kevin rolled his eyes, about to give a retort, when a... a thing, composed apparently of rock, with some sort of green growth providing its sinews and what could only be called trash filling it out everywhere else, came barrelling along the corridor, headed, to all appearances, straight for them.

“That’s not real,” Kevin said, tilting his head up from where he sprawled to look at Lori, as though seeking confirmation. “It’s just a hallushinash’n, made of blood loss, an’, an’, pixie dust...” He trailed off.

“Pixie dust is actually quite rare in nature. Though I suppose if you spent enough time harvesting the pixies, one could theoretically compose a neurotoxin capable of inducing a hallucination.” Lori rattled off quickly. “Though why this question comes up at a moment like this escapes me. Are you quite fond of asking theoretical questions on the biological composition of faerie defecations?”

“Are you quite fond of making life difficult and confusing for people who are having wild hallucinations?” he grumbled. “All I want is for the pretty lights to go away so I can see what’s actually in front of me...”

“Those pretty lights are probably the result of a concussion caused by your recurring incompetence.”

“Well, the pretty lights look like they’re trying to eat me,” murmured Kevin, absent-mindedly patting the thing on what passed for its head. He decided that now was not the time to point out that his “recurring incompetence” had saved her from fighting three extra assailants. “It’s a good thing it’s only my imagination or OH GOD MY LEG.”

Lori turned to face what could only be described as a monster. The beast was composed of detritus and rock, trash smashed against stone grinding against lichen. Putting herself in front of the devilite, Lori made a few quick signs with her hands,sending chips of stone flying towards the devilite. The thing roared in anger, backing away from the injured scout.

After sending a few more stone chips flying towards the stony ball, Lori made a few hasty signs, sending the earth to wrap Kevin in a small cave of what she hoped would be safety, “Now stay in there, I can’t necessarily ensure your survival, otherwise.”

The young man, who had sat bolt upright as soon as he felt the thing’s maw close around his flesh, sighed in irritation. “Do you always get like that? I can prevent myself from getting eaten, you know.” He pulled the staff back into his hands, ignoring the pulsing pain in his left arm, and used it to help himself stand. Well... lean. The leg the thing had chewed on didn’t feel too stable, but he had a handy wall beside him.

Lori, for her part, was focused on finding a weak point to the monster. She wanted to avoid manipulating the beast itself, because the last experiment she had done with splitting rock creatures in a like manner had resulted in the near deaths of both herself and several aides. This mistake would not be repeated however, as Lori was determined to never accidently possess a rabid beast again.

I could have done with a spear, Kevin thought ruefully. Well, next best thing... Leaning on the staff with his good arm, he scrabbled around blindly with his left hand. He was pretty sure he’d seen some loose bits of rock flying a moment ago, and... ah, yes. Perfect. His fingers closed around it, testing the shard’s edges.

Focusing her energies, Lori slammed the ceiling down on the devilite, intending to crush the monster. The beast was undeterred, and began to devour the floor of the cavern in its frenzy. Growling, Lori lifted the ceiling, and collapsed the floor of the cavern, taking care to avoid the areas she had left Kevin in. As she fell, she curved the ground as she met it, having it absorb most of the impact and slow her down. the devilite fell in a heap on the ground, it’s parts struggling to recompose.

Lori slid to a halt in front of the monster, who roared its disapproval at her presence. Concentrating, Lori first surrounded the monster in untainted stone, prohibiting it from moving. Then, as the devilite whined in frustration, she whispered an apology as she began heating the stones surrounding it until they glowed white-hot.

Scraaaaatch. Scraaaaaatch. Scraaaaatch. The noise the rock made as he scraped it slowly against the cave wall was a comforting one to Kevin. Eventually, he knew, it would be sharp enough to be usable. Scraaaaaatch. Scraaaaaatch. Scraaaaaatch. What was going on, anyway? Rocks kept on falling, making it difficult to see.

He heard a keening noise, which helped him locate the creature. It was... glowing now. Kevin decided to just give up on making sense of anything. He passed his flint into his good hand, pulling it back to throw the makeshift weapon as powerfully as he could, straight for the thing’s core. It landed.

The projectile reacted with the heat of the other rocks, causing cracks to appear on the surface of the superheated rock. With a loud pop the sharpened flint was launched off the makeshift cage, burying itself a mere few inches from Lori’s face. Recognizing the imminent danger, Lori made four hasty signs, Yan Shi Qiang Bi as the earth responded to her commands, and the devilite exploded in a wave of flame and heat.

Kevin closed his eyes, leaning his head back against the cave wall until the afterimages from the bright lights faded. Still leaning on his staff for support, he slowly opened his eyes again, and glanced at Lori. “So... you ready to get out of this place? Because I could probably use a little help here.”

Adjusting her armor, Lori sniffed, “It would be my pleasure to escort an injured... comrade... away from the site of his defeat.”

“Who’s defeated? Any day I can limp away without turning into confusing-monster-feed, I call it a win.”

“Well, I could make a hasty retreat and see how you fare alone, if you wish. I promise not to allow you to experience any mortal danger.” Lori’s voice became a bit more excited, “It could be an experiment!”

“Why is everyone I meet a raving-- actually, forget that. I basically asked for this, didn’t I? I came down here, I should have figured I’d turn into some madwoman’s punching bag. I could poke you with my stick,” he threatened, “but I won’t. Mostly because I’d probably fall over if I tried.”

There was silence for a long moment, then Lori stopped facing a wall. Focusing once more, she called up the last bit of her energy and made a few more signs, wobbling unsteadily as she did so. ma al at ava nim The signs came slowly, and with effort as the earth finally shifted to her will. “All aboard?” Lori said, cracking a crooked smile as she stepped onto the lift.
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Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 4:59 pm

Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby agoraoptera on Fri Jul 12, 2013 3:43 am

To An End

“A.. a man, a woman, a greatsword, a mask..”

A wave of nausea passed over her and she dry-heaved for several agonising seconds. Whatever she had in her had long been regurgitated and absent-mindedly incinerated. Shuddering, she held her hands to her mouth, exhaling over them, trying to warm her cold, slender digits. Clasped within her hands was a wooden amulet and she touched it to her forehead, feeling a surge of warmth pass through her.

“Mother.. Father.. Mr and Mrs Bellestin, what are your names? Where are you now? Are you dead or alive?”

If ever there was proof that thoughts were not to be suppressed, she would have made the perfect poster-girl, hitting her head against the wall in frustration, welcoming the blooming pain. Blood began to trickle down, then the flow died off abruptly, killed by her power to restore life.

“A man, a woman, a- a greatsword, a mask.”

Her vision swam and she swayed, then fell, limbs pushing uselessly against the floor. She was so tired.. So very tired.. It would be so easy to fall asleep like that..

Then a thump sounded from another room. Not particularly loud, but enough to jar her body out of its relaxed state into quivering tension. An unreasoning anger grew in her chest. How dare they wake her up like that? Just as she was about to rest! Didn’t they know just how bloody saints-cursed tired she was? Damn them, damn them, damn it all to hell!

She screamed frustratedly, but whether by contrivance of the room’s acoustics or the noise created as the others packed up, her howl went unnoticed and she beat her fists bloody against the wooden frame of the bed.

They didn’t have to pack, did they? Did they? This was her home now, as no place had been home for as long as she could remember and she chuckled bitterly at the literality of the phrase. Nowhere, nowhere at all, no, never, no home, only places to stay, shelters for their body, nowhere, no stupid place where she could form any attachments to, nowhere at all! No, only decrepit shitholes and condemned buildings threatening to collapse upon them, oh the excitement, wretched tenements they had to beg or steal their way into, fellow thieves and scum-sucking lowlifes dwelling with them!

It hurt, oh by all the saints, by the Never-Fading, it hurt so badly. She didn't want to leave, this was her home, after she'd been taken from her.. home..

Hadn't another taken her away again?

"A man, a woman, a greatsword, a mask," she forced out waveringly.

Where was Mother? Father? Who was that man, woman, the sword, the mask, who?

Eliziya cried out and banged her head against the floor, genuflecting like a penitent. Her fingers, stained with her lifeblood, left crimson smears across the floor. Noticing the erratic swirls of red, she began drawing intently, digits making forceful strokes. A glyph quickly formed, sharp, bloody, angular. She traced the simplistic design over time and again, then began copying the hateful sigil all about the floor. When she ran out of space to draw, she began daubing the congealing fluid onto herself, marking wrists and ankles, arms and neck. Then, dried to flakes, she looked down at herself to admire her frantic handiwork.

Repeated across her room, across her self, was a mimicry of the ugly rune that adorned the amulet hanging around her neck. The runes glared up at her malefically, radiating hate and belligerence in their very design. Just looking at them made her feel wrathful at how imperfect they were, mere caricatures of the original, lousy spurious imitations!

With a feral cry, she picked up a needle, thread already tied, and jabbed it into her arm, in and out, in and out, pulling string now dyed in her flesh in a now-familiar pattern. Finishing the rune, she yanked on the string with her teeth, tearing off the excess thread. It was a little better, maybe, than the smears. Maybe.

The thought of imperfection was an itch under her skin, an itch she couldn't scratch. Suddenly furious again, a wave of flames brushed over her, wiping her clean of the insultingly poor copies she'd made.

"Ma... Pa... where.. where?"

The commotion outside continued. Packing. Eliziya curled her lips into a snarl. They wouldn't make her go, they couldn't! If she was to go, then, then, then she would go and find her parents, yes, yes! She would go and find them, Eliziya thought joyously, and then they'd be together again.

But first, the past had be erased. There was only ever one family, right? There could only be one, otherwise it wasn't really a family.

Fire began dripping down her hands like slick wax melting off a candle. Upon contact, the flames spread across the stone floor as a roiling vermillion mass grasping hungrily. The fire rushed up the wall, a surreal curtain licking the roof. The wooden roof.

Ordinary flames sparked into existence, devouring the wood in crackling droves, pushing out from the embrace of its mageborn progenitor inferno like an adolescent child pulling free of its mother. A timber, long worn past its prime, collapsed and nearly struck Eliziya, causing her to yelp and leave the room in a panic. Her flames, as if sensing their mistress' departure, dissipated, leaving a cooling room charred black with broken dreams and twisted pleas.

But the roof still burned.

---

“Still... you still won’t you show me the way yet, Ba’al?” Luca snarled to himself, looking upon the serrated sword drawn in his hand. The soldiers ahead of him did not hear his words, as they readied the talismans in their offhands and their weapons in the other. The sound of armored feet echoed towards him and the soldiers as they braced for battle. “I will show you the depths of their rage, Ba’al, if that is what it will take.”

A black leather glove laid against his shoulder, catching his attention. He tilted his head backwards, to see the familiar masked face of Asha. The mask looked towards his eyes, as if reading his thoughts. His eyes twitched in response, moving rapidly to those thoughts. “This a dangerous battle.” He finally muttered to her, “But we can’t risk you using your magic,” The man argued. “No, we need to draw on Ba’al’s power... we must if we’re ever going to find the source of it.” The grip on his shoulder became more firm, as if to continue the argument. “I said no.” The man answered, more sternly this time.

He brushed the glove aside, and moved forward with the troops ahead of him as they approached the guards who aimed to stop them and reclaim this area of the city. Just as they got within range, the red aura that Luca had grown so familiar with began encasing the soldiers as well as himself as he drew upon the magic locked in his sword.

Asha watched from afar the chaos that ensued, her blank disposition revealing no emotion to the carnage she witnessed. Bodies and limbs fell to the ground, guards and would-be-soldiers cut down, all fighting for goals they were not even sure of. Only one in that crowd knew exactly what he wanted. To her surprise however, a few guards managed to break through the lines, and went right for her. No doubt, they had heard of the advantage she was capable of giving the people in this army.

The robed woman made no effort to move as the soldiers charged her; when they got within striking range their swords swung right past her as her body bent and twisted away from each strike. Swing after swing, their sword arms seemed incapable of connecting as the mage proved capable of bending her body in any way possible to avoid the slashes of their swords. Finally, she leapt backwards once with surprising ease, carrying her several feet behind her somehow. The guards narrowed their eyes, and charged her again, but this time she did not play around with them and ether gathered above her gloved arm. With swift movement, she stabbed the glove into the ground, spreading a trail of energy towards the three men. There was a short delay, but suddenly in a flash of light the three were lit aflame from nowhere.

The guards struggled to put themselves out, but the strange green flames that encased them seemed unnaturally strong, easily burning through the armor they wore and only increasing in intensity when they attempted to put it out. With another swing of her arm, three orbs formed above her and flew into the dying soldiers. When they reached their targets, the green flames exploded upward in a beam of light and what remained was but ashes of the people who had attempted to harm her.

As the mage looked on towards her defeated opponents she noticed something about the battle that... did not belong. Men and women were fighting, yes, and it was to be expected. But deep inside of the battle there was another, a young girl pushing soldiers and guards away with what little force she could muster. The masked woman tilted her head towards the girl, recognizing her. Then she looked back upon the “soldiers” that followed Luca. Now consumed by their rage, they would cut down whoever got in their way, guard or otherwise. Her head lowered, as if contemplating her actions, but quickly rose it again and leapt forwards into the battle.

Her body glided, a light trail of wind forming at her feet and hands as it carried her forward with ease. Her body landed into the center of the battlefield, right in front of the struggling girl just in time to stop a sword from diving upon her. The soldier's arm caught by her own, before a blast of ice shot from her hand and embedded into his chest, launching him backwards. It was quite noticeable in the middle of the battle, and it was quite clear that it caught the attention of the guards.

“That’s the masked one!” One called out, “She’s the one supplying them with those talismans!” That was all most of the nearby guards needed to hear to turn their attention on her.

“Stay out of the battle, Asha!” Luca called out in the middle of his fury, charging past her at several of the soldiers that approached. But the situation was getting bad. It was not just the girl was in danger, the guards were managing to deal with the soldiers here even; with the rage spell active it was likely this was a battle they would lose. That is, unless Asha made a her move, now.

Without even making an attempt to acknowledge her, she swept the girl behind her black robes. Her gloved arms descended towards the paved road once more, just barely grazing the ground. Soon afterwards a trail of light carved forward, drawing runes all over the battle around her. “Don’t do it!” Luca yelled out, seeing the light at his feet. But his order was ignored as she raised her palms once more and slammed them down upon the fully formed runes on the ground.

Whatever happened next would be blur to everyone involved. But soon Luca and the girl’s vision was blinded by the light of the ether. When the light dissipated Luca, as well as most of his soldiers, stood on the battlefield unharmed. Their enemies however, seemed to have completely vanished. Luca sheathed his weapon, canceling the effects of its magic on him, and dashed over to his friend.

Asha lay on the ground, her body shifting in pain. “Damn it... I warned you.” He cringed, “We can’t risk that kind of power here, or anywhere, you know what it does to you! Why the hell did you do it?” He squatted down towards her, helping her up to her knees. Her mask lifted and looked towards him, the answer was all in her movements. “... I could have won.” He growled, but the mask merely shook in opposition to the statement. Then, with some pain, she shifted over a bit to reveal the girl hiding behind her.

Luca’s eyes narrowed a bit, more in disbelief than anything else. “...Eliyza?” He recalled her name; the one they had kidnapped as leverage over Anjali. “What the...”

"Pa. Ma."
If you can make it better, don't make it sentient.

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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Krika on Sat Jul 13, 2013 10:25 pm

First Meetings

For the most part, the main parts of the Pallas Akasha Academy were above ground, in the massive stone buildings that comprised it’s campus. However, both in the name of needing extra space, and for isolating experiments and tests that were potentially much more volatile away from the majority of the campus, there were a system of tunnels underneath the buildings. While they certainly didn't rival the catacombs of Chrysaor, they were extensive enough that one needed some experience to properly navigate them without getting lost. It was through these tunnels that Fern was picking his way, attempting to find the room listed on the note in his hands.

Hello, mister Fern, recently graduated student of the Summoning School. I am explorer Antonius Aurelius Pliny, and it is with great pleasure I invite you to be my assistant, as you passed your graduation exam on the Summoning School on your first try. It was a very impressive feat, considering most students need a second or even a third try, and you didn't even suffer any kind of permanent damage. I myself had to do my exam twice - though it wasn't on the Summoning School, but let’s not get onto personal details, shall we?
If you wish to work for me, meet me at my office on Lab 48, on the crossing of corridors 15 and 16 the Underground, right under room 23 of the Spiritism wing. In case you wish any kind of information about me, check room 42 of the Research wing, the historicals archives in the Administration or even the “Theory of Magic” or “Cryptomagi” areas of the library under the letter ‘A’.


Having an office down here was odd, to say the least. The general opinion of the tunnels was that while the isolation offered by them was useful, they were small and confining enough that nearly everyone didn't like to spend time down here, which made this Aurelius person having an office down here rather odd. Although he could be one of the few people who didn't mind being down here, or perhaps he especially like one of the rooms? Some professors had offices that combined with their labs, so this Aurelius could have something similar going on. Still, he was pretty far down in the tunnels, almost near what he thought was the bottom of the tunnel. He idly wondered where the tunnels he spent his Exam in were in relation to the main system, and very quickly decided that he didn't really want to think about that.

Still, the note had checked out. This Aurelius had several journals and research books in the indicated sections. He had gleaned from them that he was an explorer of some note, who seemed to focus on uncovering and learning about some odder magic styles or spells, often from rather faraway lands. Spiritism, it appeared, involved drawing upon the inherent magic of the land to fuel spells rather than drawing from one’s internal reserves. He had made a note of that, as it might provide an interesting way to fuel a Summon, though the lack of direct connection to a Summoner would complicate things. Still, Aurelius seemed to have written several treatises on it, though his journals implied that he’d studied several other kinds that either weren't formally written, or just out of his reach. Enough information to prove that Aurelius was a real person, and thus was worth following up on, especially for someone in need of something to to like him.

He turned around the corridor, and ran smack into the door that was recessed about a foot into the stone, rather than a corridor as he had been expecting. He checked the Lab number, and was pleased to find it matched the number listed in the note. The tunnels weren't straight or necessarily number in order, so it took some luck to find the exact number even if you were in the right area. Still, the hour he had spent wandering around regardless, he had found the indicated lab.

After checking the doorknob, and finding it unlocked, he opened in and checked inside to make sure he wasn't interrupting anything. The room that greeted him was by far the most messy and crowded room he had ever seen, passing even Malato's room. Pieces of equipment in storage were literally packed wall to wall, with only a small pathway through them to the other side of the room, which was hidden behind the sheer amount of equipment. If anything, this looked rather like a storage room that nobody had been in for some time, if the dust on the equipment was any indicator. Still, the path was clear enough, and was free from dust, so someone had been here recently. “I swear, if this is Nutter’s idea of a prank, I am going to...something to him.” Fern muttered while working his way through the piles of equipment, and one point having to duck under what appeared to be an ungodly large alembic that lay across the path.

He emerged into a relatively open area on the other side of the room, that looked as though all the equipment had been shoved to the side, or piled on top of other pieces to make room for a desk and cabinet. At the desk was an old man, with long white hair covering pretty much every part of the face that hair grows from, bent over a large piece of parchment, carefully making sweeping lines onto it. The parchment was held down by several green jewels, along with another few more scattered both on and off the parchment. Alongside them was what appeared to be several small chunks of a metal of some sort, as well as several books. The man, Antonius is would appear, seemed to be very much engrossed in his work, and he had the ragged appearance of someone who had just spent the last couple of days working with minimal sleep.

He approached the desk carefully, slightly worried about interrupting something important. “Ah, hello sir? Are you..” he checked the note, “...Antonius Aurelius Pliny?”

“Hm...?” The bearded man stopped his work and looked around. When he noticed the young mage, he simply put down his reading glasses and started cleaning it with a piece of cloth, still looking at the newcomer. “Oh, yes, and I’m assuming you are Fern, whom I invited to be my assistant, am I right?” Fern nodded. “Yes, I am.” Aurelius then grinned, his expression showing off many of the wrinkles he got with the age, and then put his glasses back at its place. “Excellent! Does this mean you accept working as my assistant?” He said with excitement, as if he were a little kid who just got candy. Fern nodded cautiously, a touch off-put by the old man’s excitement. “I was hoping for perhaps some more detail as to what you’d like my assistance for, but I would be honored to assist you.”

“Oh, I see, details, of course. Well, even at this age I don’t feel much like stopping my studies, I love it more than anything else... Except maybe my family, that’s why after my last, adventure, as one would put it-” He said adventure with a small chuckle. “-I decided to come by to the academy and do some work here, so I could stay put in one place. As you can see-” He moved his arms around to show off the room to Fern. “-They don’t believe I’ll be staying here for long, so they even gave me my usual room...” He paused for a second to catch his breath, and started back up again, not giving Fern a chance to respond. “I must say, I do agree with them. Even though I’d love to stay with my wife, I just don’t feel like stopping now. I may do one last exploration or not, I’m still unsure, but given how my wife still seems to have a plenty of time left-” he chuckled one more time. “-I’m sure to say I’m not retiring from exploring for real, the time being. Unless something in this room falls on me and strains my back or something, those are the plans for now.” Aurelius finished laughing, and then gave Fern time for the information sink in.

Fern nodded. “You have an explorer’s heart, as poets would say, I guess. I’d be happy to help you on an expedition. Despite what my exam might say, I do not have the greatest practical experience, so this would be an amazing chance to learn outside of the college.” Aurelius laughed kindly. “Oh don’t worry, until a possible expedition we have time to study and train.” He turned his head and stared at the table quietly, as if looking for something over the parchment on it.

Oddly, there didn't actually seem to be any ink bottles or pens on the table. Instead there were a few lines that seemed to be spreading out slowly from the green gems on the paper, as if they were exuding ink that was filling up trenches in the parchment. His curiosity spiked, Fern picked up one that wasn't on the map, and examined it for a moment, noting geometric patterns carved into it’s surface. “I do not think I have seen anything like these before. What are they?” Aurelius smiled under his beard. “These enchanted green crystals have been used for a long time in some parts of the world as means of registering information. It can register pretty much anything the user wants if one has the right knowledge how to use it, but aren't very useful in battle... Most of the time.” He said with a smirk. “It is said the technique was invented by fairies, a kind of fairy known as ‘information fairy’. I can’t tell how true this information is, because while I have met fairies, I haven’t met any fairy that could confirm this story... Actually I don’t recall meeting any information fairy at all.” Fern gave him a look of mild disbelief at the mention of ‘information fairies’. Noticing this, the elder spoke. “I too have the same kind of disbelief you do, but I have learned to not disregard information like that as untrue, and since I don’t know what makes people call these fairies ‘information fairies’ I can tell there’s some truth on the story. And even if it doesn't, I have no means to prove the contrary as of yet, so what else can I do?” He asked Fern, but once again gave him no chance to respond. “But let’s not get in this kind of detail, shall we?”

Fern nodded. “Agreed. As I mentioned before, I would be honored to assist you.” Aurelius smiled. “Excellent. Well... Right now I’m trying to find a way to make these gems work indefinitely, because once they've drawn a map in a whole piece of paper, they stop working. I want to make them constantly recreate the map based on its surroundings. It already does some of that.” He pointed to a pair of symbols on the paper. “As it is showing us our current position, but in case we move, so does it.” To demonstrate this point, he walked around the table once, making sure Fern noticed the one of the symbols move around a rectangle. Fern tilted his head to the side. “Well, I would have to know more about exactly how they work, and you have probably got a better idea of where to start than I do. I should probably go grab some books though, Milgren’s treatise on binding magic to gems occurs to me as being potentially useful.”

“Great.” The man smiled as he sat on his chair once again. “If you want to start right now, you could also help me with your knowledge on the theory of Summoning, given the required symbology required to invoke a being from its place to wherever you want seems useful on this matter, sans the summoning part.”

Fern nodded again, and started to pick his way back out of the room. “I will be back quickly. And thank you for this opportunity, sir!” Aurelius grinned like a child once again. “When you are back, make sure to bring a lunch for both of us, I’m paying.” He searched within his pockets and then tossed a small pouch full of money to Fern. “And by the way, call me Pliny.”
Last edited by Krika on Mon Aug 12, 2013 7:58 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Krika
>Narra has tiny jerk people in her socks.
>We are affirming our collective jerkhood by committing genocide on them.
Guyshane
>I'm going to read the logs and pray that that sentence makes more sense in context
>No
>No it does not
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby RussetDivinity on Sun Jul 14, 2013 1:01 am

How Likovya Got Her Knife Back

The Day After Quest 31

As soon as she left Marcus and Elric, Likovya went to the slums, stopping only to sneak a little food from a nearby shop. It wasn't exactly stealing, she thought, perched on a roof and munching a bit of day-old bread. The food would probably have been thrown out anyway, and she had left some money hidden in the bakery. Besides, she was pretty sure the baker had been deliberately looking the other way when she grabbed the loaf.

Once she felt full, she wrapped the bread in her jacket and tied the sleeves around her shoulders. A new jacket with fewer tears might be in order, but she was rather reluctant to find one; this had been hers since the circus, even though it hadn't been her show jacket. She scurried down a drainpipe and pushed deeper into the slums, hunting for a man who had accidentally stolen her knife.

It took her most of the day and a fair bit of the night to track him down. She didn't pause for sleep so much as stopped every few hours to nap in a secluded corner, always waking after less than an hour for a quick nibble on the loaf before pressing on. By the next morning, her bread was nearly gone, but she was very close to the man's hideout. She had breakfast sitting on a doorstep until a burly-looking man tried to shoo her away. She left, but not before he caught sight of the knives at her waist and strapped to each wrist.

The man's hideout was a little house crammed in between two slightly larger houses. Likovya brushed the crumbs from her jacket, put it back on, and rapped on the door. A few seconds later, it was opened by a very familiar man. "Hello?" he said, frowning at her. She could tell he recognized her, so she put on her brightest smile.

"Hello! I'm Likovya. You may remember me from that time I stuck a knife in your chest." Her smile grew wider. "I'd like it back now."

The man tried to close the door, but she stuck her foot in the crack and started to wedge her body in. No one would really care about a girl trying to break into a house, not here. Besides, they would probably think she was the victim here -- which she was, in a way -- especially since half her knives were now hidden from view.

"Just give me the knife," she said, pressing her shoulder against the door. It was all she could do to keep it open, and she didn't want to try finding another way in. She was still trying to avoid the consequences of one broken window. "I won't stab you again if you just give it back."

"You little..." The words were garbled, but she caught the gist. After years of performing for difficult audiences, it wasn't even enough to make her blush. "You stabbed me, and you think you can just come here and ask for a knife?"

"Not just a knife," she said, her voice shaking slightly. "My knife. And I did ask, rather than demand. Do you want me to say please?" There was no response. "Please, will you give me back my knife? There, was that better?"

Still no response, but the man stopped pushing against the door so hard. Likovya opened it and stood in the doorway, flicking a throwing knife in and out of her sleeve. She really should have used one of those instead of her good knife. She wouldn't miss her wrist knives quite as much. Enough to go after them, of course, but she wouldn't have gone on some kind of quest for them.

"How about this: please give me back my knife, or you can have your other lung stuck." Her voice was more serious now, but she kept smiling. "I'm all alone, and that doesn't mean I'm helpless. It just means I don't have anyone to keep me from killing."

Oh, the villain. That had been an amusing role. Audiences had loved it, and she understood why. There was nothing like seeing someone tremble before a good performance.

"My knife." Her smile dropped. "Now."

Five minutes later, Likovya was walking away, all of her knives restored and ready for a proper breakfast, or maybe lunch. Yes, it would be about time for an early lunch when she got back to the main part of the city. Perhaps it was time to treat herself and actually pay for some good food. After all, in the past twenty-four hours (or however long a day lasted in this place), she had helped someone from Storm and Drive again and gotten her favorite knife back. She hadn't even had to draw blood.
Jubilation and despair are two sides of the same coin.
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Pixelmage on Sun Jul 14, 2013 5:16 pm

Consequences and the future.
Timeline Placement: The day after Quest 32.

Unfamiliar ceilings weren’t completely strange to Julius. In his time as a vagrant, acting as a man known as Fade, rarely were the places where he spent more than one night. But as of late, he began to forget how things could change. That morning was different, and in more ways than just his current room. Anji... Kavros... Lori... He didn’t know how long he just remained there, and didn’t particularly care about finding out. But once his mind was allowed to go through all that had passed the night before, he was aware that he needed to move once more.

There were a fair few things to settle. First of which, was going to see Lorelei..

The librarian, apparently, already waited for him in her usual office. “Before you ask, Anjali is safe. Now sit down, you may have stopped bleeding but you still need to recover.”

Julius complied, “There are a few matters I’d like to discuss, Sa-” He quickly corrected himself. “Loremaster.”

“Of course there are.” Lori replied matter-of-factly. “First of which, you and your... Guildleader, are dead. And that’s final. I’m responsible for the seal, and I don’t want to have to hold off scores of spell drunk idiots attacking my Knights in order to reach you. No, Storm and Drive guildmaster Anjali Torvantine and Storm and Drive second-in-command Julius Valerian were found dead by my resource gatherers in the woods of the second floor.”

Julius wanted to protest the decision, but thought better of challenging the Loremaster. “And where is she now?”

“In the same building you just left.” She referred to the living quarters of the Loreknights. A simple housing built behind the library that was originally intended as a warehouse for extra supplies. “That place is off limits to any visitors browsing the library, and it also always has at least a couple of my knights close by. Her safety is not something I’m concerned about, Mister Valerian. Yours is.”

“Excuse me... But, why?” He interrupted.

“Your blood. I can not store it in a vial somewhere, the seal needs living blood, freshly drawn, in order to be safely unlocked. If you are dead, releasing the seal would be akin to bashing down a locked door. The woman might suffer a number of rather severe consequences if that method of dispel is flawed, and it’s not a risk I would enjoy taking.”

“I remember your presentation.” Julius said annoyed. “But why would you think I’m at risk, especially after you imposed that my survival is to be kept secret?”

Lori sighed. “Don’t give me that. We both know that you’d chase after Kavros as soon as Anji’s location was disclosed. No, for the time being you are too wounded to even leave this building.”

Unable to contest the woman’s interpretation, Julius diverted his gaze. He knew he couldn’t face the Shadow now. He couldn’t when he wasn’t as wounded, trying to do so now would simply be suicide. But there was another matter that he couldn’t postpone. “Anji’s sword.” He said wearily.

“I beg your pardon.”

“I have to recover Anji’s sword before someone else finds it.”

“You knights and your swords.” Lori grumbled, staring him down, his attitude a bit too familiar to her. “Go back to your room and rest, you shouldn’t be walking around as it is. I have to send someone to make sure the area you fought in is in order, in case some nosy farmer decides to look for himself. I’ll tell them to take anything they find to your room, if that will keep you from rushing off to doom Anji and yourself.”

Julius began to protest. “I couldn’t just sit there and do nothing.”

“Then go help in the library aisles!” The librarian was annoyed. “Or read a book, it’s not like we have any shortage of those here. You’re not leaving today, and be rational here, if my knights that are fully healthy and properly equipped can’t reach the sword before someone else stumbles upon it, how in the heavens would you get there fast enough? No, just make both of our lives easier and tell me where to find it.”

“Leaving the second outpost. Head through the woods toward the main goblin settlement.” Julius resigned himself to obeying. He wanted to solve the problems, but ultimately, the Sage was correct, right now he wouldn’t be able to help anyone. How long ago it was when I thought I wanted to get stronger for the last time? “...Thank you.” He stood up to leave.

“Don’t thank me. And... If you’re dead now, do you have any preference as to what we should call you? Or would ‘Idiot’ suffice?”

A new name? “How about Tavi? I think that sounds like a good name for an unassuming librarian.”

Lori smirked for a moment, then grabbed a few papers off of her desk, “Since you insist on working here, Mr... Tavi, is it?” Lori glanced up at the newly renamed knight briefly, before scooping up a few more papers and handing them to him. “You will serve me now as my personal aide. If I need a dissertation on the composition of a werewolf’s tail, you will locate it. If I need you to locate a rare mineral, you will seek it out somewhere on this godsforsaken rock. Have I made myself clear?”

“Yes, ma’am.” Julius replied immediately, then nodded and left to store the stack of papers... Somewhere. Now, what goes where in this place?
"Yami ni madoishi awarena kage yo
Hito o kizutsuke otoshimete,
Tsumi ni oboreshi gō no tama,
Ippen... shinde miru?"
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Qara-Xuan Zenith on Sun Jul 14, 2013 11:51 pm

A Trip to the Library


Ben slipped into the library, awash with pleasant memories. Back home, her brother Alex was just about the only person to regularly use the big palace libraries, and it was the first place she’d look if she wanted to have a talk with him, one of her favourite people to speak with.

Now, of course, she wasn’t looking for Alex, and she had more serious worries than asking for brotherly advice. Still, the tall, imposing bookshelves felt welcoming to her. Felt, a little, like home.

She had come here, to this part of the building, well, partly to find that old sense of security, of advice. Partly because she had no idea how to find her way around the rest of the place well enough to find whom she was looking for.

She ran her hand absently down the spines of books along a shelf, when one of the passing librarians caught her eye. Apparently she had come to the right place.

Stepping into the aisle to stop him before he moved on, Ben raised an eyebrow at the man, bemused. “So, you’ve... become a librarian to pass the time while you heal?”

“I wouldn’t say it was completely my choice.” Julius replied. “The Loremaster was rather insistent that I don’t leave for the time being.”

Only the gravity of the state she’d last seen him in kept Ben from laughing at that. “Yes, I can imagine her not wanting you to be up and about until you’re in one piece. I’m more commenting on the day job than the setting.”

“It could be worse, I suppose. But, it’s probably a good thing that you appeared here.” He decided it was best to talk now, rather than to wait until the news spread out. “Anji and I will be declared dead. So... Could I ask you to keep secret what truly happened?”

Ben eyed him for a moment, a rare serious look in her eyes, before she answered. “Of course,” she said quietly, then added a light chuckle. “I suppose I may as well try for a reputation of being bookish.”

“Thank you.” Julius replied sincerely. “You would probably want to look for Tavi, if you need help finding any books.” For a moment, he considered stopping there, but decided against it. “Not that he knows where anything is in this place, mind you.”

“Tavi,” Ben repeated, smiling again. “I’ll make sure the Loremaster treats him well.”

Turning to go, Ben held herself back a moment. She was always bad at this... Still. She reached out to touch the new librarian gently on the arm. “She’ll be all right.” She left the statement open, hanging there, a question or a reassurance, however he might choose to take it.

He paused and closed his eyes for a moment, unsure of what to say. “She will. I’m sure of it.” Julius opened his eyes, grateful for the support. “But only for the moment, both of us are dead.”

Ben nodded, and lightly gripped his arm where her hand already was. “I’ll keep the cover story in mind. And I intend to keep it that way-- just a story.” Her mouth twisted wryly. “Even if that means letting our dear Loremaster keep you enslaved to her every whim.” Without waiting for a reply, she turned to go. Now that she knew the situation, she’d be sure to return, once in a while, to check in.
Lead by example. Get lost in a swamp.

AS DICTATED TO INSTANTIATION 17-01-18-01.
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Guyshane on Tue Jul 16, 2013 12:20 am

A desperate plan
Marcus arrived at the rally point. Julius and Anji weren’t there. Okay this isn’t good, Anji told me she’d have my hide if I was later. They should be here. Marcus settled down to wait, hoping that the other two were just late.

A guard walked past Marcus, stopping in front of a wooden wall across the square, covered in ads and notices. Pulling a new parchment and nails out of his pack, he quickly nailed up the new announcement, and left.

Marcus got up and read the announcement.

Recent casualties.
  • Alphonse Trevor. City Guard.
  • Anjali Torvantine. Storm and Drive.
  • Charles Magnos. City Guard.
  • Frederic Bagal. Civilian.
  • Julius Valerian. Storm and Drive.
  • Samuel Johan. City Guard.
Three victims remain unidentified.


Marcus felt the pit of his stomach go cold when he saw his friends’ names on the list. For a moment life seemed to stop. Then he pulled himself together long enough to chase after the guard.

“Hey! You who confirmed Anji and Julius’ deaths?”

The guard paused for a moment, half-turning to face the man. “I just post the deaths... I don’t confirm all of them.”
Marcus spoke through gritted teeth. “Then. Who. Confirms. Them?”

“It depends on who found the bodies.” The guard said, irritated. “Anjali Torvantine and Julius Valerian’s deaths were confirmed by the Loreknights.”

That was all Marcus needed to hear, without another word he turned and ran. If the deaths were confirmed by the Loreknights I know who to talk to.

-----------------------------------

Marcus arrived at the gates of the Loreknights’ library. The doors were closed. The warrior immediately bagen banging his fist on the doors.

“Oi! You lot, open up and take me to your leader!”

One of the knights glanced down from the top of the tower. “Not another one of you crazies.” He groaned.

Marcus held up his Storm and Drive pendant. “Come down here and say that to my face you thrice-damned fool!”

“Let him in.” said a voice to the side. Lori stepped out into full view, armor gleaming. “Marcus, wonderful timing. I was just heading out to bury your guildleader and her guard. Care to join me?”

“Lori” Marcus replied just loud enough to be heard. “You are going to let me in and I will be getting answers from you, or I swear on all powers holy and unholy I go to the assassins for answers next.” He stared up at her. “I’ve had to deal with enough already. Don’t test me.”

“I have to wonder why you’re still standing there if I already told the knights to let you in.”

Marcus growled under his breath and pushed his way through the doors.Someone better give me some answers.

“Now, are you going to be a good little fighter and listen, or shall I continue to the memorial without you?” Lori sniffed.

“That depends. Are you actually going to give me straight answers? From what I hear you have a bit of a problem with that.” Marcus crossed his arms and glared at her.

Glancing over at a nearby page, she said, “Rudy, I would like to see Tavi in my office immediately. Have him bring some tea as well.” As the page gave a curt nod and left, Lori turned back to the knight, “We will speak at length in my office, though I believe you already know that they have died. I don’t see the issue.”

Marcus let out a dark chuckle. “Well then it seems like the rumor about you not understanding human interaction was true as well, by all means lead the way.”

-----

When Julius entered the study with a tray of tea on his hands, he did not expect to see the familiar face of Marcus making company to the Loremaster. And for a moment, he merely stood there, not knowing what to do or say.

“Tavi, you layabout.” Lori said, annoyed. “If you had any brains in your head, you’d have remembered to bring a second set of teacups.”

Brought back to the present by the remark, Julius decided to ignore Lori for the moment and set the tray over the desk, turning immediately to Marcus. “I’m sorry... I, suppose you heard the news before I could reach you.”

“That’s one way of putting it.” Marcus replied. “Both of you have some explaining to do. I would do it quickly if I were you.”

“Soren Kavros found us, we couldn’t fight him back.” Julius decided to keep it simple. “If he knows we survived, we might not be so lucky next time.”

“You aren’t telling me everything Julius, don’t bother lying. You’re horrible at it, your damn beggar disguise when you first got here wasnt even that good.”

“I’m not lying about what I said. As to what I’m not saying...” He diverted his gaze. “I suppose I should take you to see Anji. It’ll do better than trying to explain it.”

Lori glared at the knight, “Julius, remember our agreement. I hope I have made myself clear on this subject. I will not be responsible for two deaths.”

“Yes, you have. And this is still my decision. I will choose to trust my friends.”

“Very well. I need to leave for the memorial now, as it is I’m already late. Find that dissertation on long-term spell effects I was looking at yesterday before I get back, I need to have another look.” Lori stood, heading for the door.

“Yes, ma’am.” Julius said without any emotion. “Should we go, Marcus?”

“Yes, I think we should.”

-----

Marcus followed Julius to a room behind the library. “What the hell is she doing out here Julius?”

“She... Was very nearly killed, Marcus.” Julius said. “I’m trying to think of a way to explain her wounds, actually. I might need to do that in order to find a healer strong enough to help her. Either way, for now she needs to be protected. That’s why Lori sent out the death notices.” Once they arrived at a perfectly common room without any special markings, Julius gestured at the door. “We’re here.”

Marcus turned the handle and opened the door to see a plain room with a statue of Anji in it.

“What?”

“It’s called Seal of Stone. She’s alive, but asleep and frozen. Until I find a healer strong enough to heal her wound.”

Marcus shook his head. “If there was a healer strong enough you would have had them here already, don’t bother arguing we both know its true.”

Julius held himself back from punching Marcus, if only barely. “I know... But what should I have done? Let her bleed to death without trying?”

Marcus turned back to face Julius with steel in his gaze. “Did I say I was giving up? I don’t give up not anymore. And I’ll be damned if I lose another family.” The warrior began pacing back and forth across the room at a rapid pace. “We don’t have a skilled enough healer here with us to save Anji, fine we need someone from the outside. This presents two problems: One, we cannot leave the castle unless we defeat the 100th floor, this is an unviable option. Two, we do not know how the Castle selects those who reach it and we have no way to pick and choose. Therefore with no way to leave the castle we need a healer on the castle skilled enough to save her who is not with us now. So.....” A vicious grin spread across his face.

“Julius, where are the remains of the gem that trapped you and Anji in the time loop?”

“Back at the temple, we never took the shards out.” Julius said, considering the other man’s reasoning. “There are a few other options as well. The lorekeepers and the church both have researches on the healing disciplines, one of them might be able to acquire the necessary skill. Of course, don’t expect me to sit here and wait, but it’s one thing to watch out for while we try to find someone else. And... I know what you mean by looking for that gem. If you can’t control it...”

Marcus’ grin hadn’t left his face. “You’re completely right. I would need a targeted ritual, constructed by a master spellcaster. A spellcaster with enough talent to say...oh I don’t know, suspend someone in stone indefinitely until a cure can be found at which point said person would be released.” The soldier paused for breath. “But I don’t suppose you would know anyone like that.”

Julius just leaned back on the wall, “Convincing her to use an unknown artifact will be impossible. She wouldn’t take the risk, ever. But, she might agree to study it. Which wouldn’t be fast, but it’s at least something being done.”

“Impossible you say? I don’t believe in it, tell her whatever you have to: tell her I’m a test subject and she doesn't risk herself at all, tell her I’ll tell the Anti-guild about her, tell her the cow god will be very angry with her. But you need to convince her.” Marcus began heading out, I’ll be back in a couple hours with the fragments, don’t let me down...wait no.” Marcus turned and pointed at Anji. “Don’t let her down Captain.” With that Marcus turned and left.

“I won’t.” Julius didn’t know if Marcus would hear him, but he didn’t follow.
I say we nuke it from orbit...its the only way to be sure.
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Guyshane
 
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2012 9:45 pm

Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Victin on Tue Jul 16, 2013 1:43 pm

Lost (or How One Escaped a Civil War Through Dumb Luck)

Author's Note: More dumb than luck, I tell 'ya

Intial Time Placement: Two days before the Civil War striked

Once again, the swordsman Morionem was strolling through the forest in search of adventure, but this time he had a more clear goal: find a calm place on the woods to train until he learned any new technique based on the book he found. Differently from most adventurers in the town, Morionem had a bad time finding anything fun to do. Most of the time he only found small jobs that granted him a minimum amount of money, and the ones that granted him a better amount of money didn't last long. Heck, he was fired from a restaurant and the city guard rejected him when he tried to apply. The only job he wasn't fired from was the mailman one, but he politely quitted so he could spend some time training. "I hope they accept me back when I return, otherwise I'll have to live with the monks for real this time."

It was a sunny and calm day, the golden light of the sun shining on the great lake Morionem could see through the trees in the distance. He decided to walk by the lakeshore, judging its peace would be perfect to learn the techniques he wanted. Once there, he kept his slow pace, albeit now making sure to stand aside the lake. "Ah... What beautiful day... I wish all the good people in this town could share this..." Morionem casually whistled and kept strolling, enjoying the environment.

-----

After walking for a few hours, Morionem had already left the lake behind some time ago. Currently he was in a small glade atop a hill, so he could still see it behind him. He decided to stop there to have his lunch right there, as it seemed a place free of any creature that might try to rob his food. "I think this will be a good place to spend the week training. It is big and calm, so I can train a lot. But first, food!"

Morionem then casually put his backpack on the ground to pick up his lunch... When a breeze passed by and his backpack literally flew to the top of a tree. "What?" The swordsman asked confusedly. "What. The. Hell." He rubbed his eyes to make sure he was seeing straight. "What the hell is wrong with the thieves of this city!?!?" He yelled enraged to no one in special. "First I meet thieves that want to help people, which is very unusual but believable, but now the wind is stealing my belongings!"

The swordsman decided to attack the tree in a fit of rage, but he failed to make the backpack drop down. After punching the tree enough that his hands hurt a little, he sighed and started trying to climb up the tree to retrieve his backpack. It wasn't so hard for someone who wasn't used to climbing, but it was definetively easier than climbing a tower. Though it took him two minutes to reach the top, but only because the tree was tall - Actually the tallest one around, but the swordsman didn't even notice. Once on the top, his belongings were just at the reach of his hands, now all he needed to do was...

The breeze came again, this time taking the backpack to another tree, that was smaller than the current one, though in exchange was surrounded by thorny bushes. After one second of silence to realize what just had happened, the swordsman yelled incoherent mumblings and started to climb down the oak.

-----

Okay, okay, Morionem had spent the last thirty minutes trying to retrieve his backpack so he could have lunch, but his rage had apparently reached its limit a while ago. He finally did it with a few bruises, scratches and while his hands were a bit sore from all the climbing, there was nothing to worry about. After all his trouble he decided to simply enjoy his meal wherever he was right now. He was still angry, but after this trouble the food was so good he couldn't feel any rage, at least for the time being.

-----

"Hehehehehehe..." Laughed an unnoticed boy that rested on the highest branch of a tree on the surroundings of a certain swordsman. He was skinny and black, and his only pieces of clothing were his cap and shorts, both the same color of red. His leg hanged in the air, and he leaned on the tree on such position a normal person wouldn't manage to keep for long on the weak branch, but yet he stood normally. From his position, he could perfectly see the man he was pranking just now, eating his lunch while sporting a grin of satisfaction on his face.

"What do I do to him now? Do I make a pack of wolves chase after him?" The boy asked no one is particular, and then answered the question himself. "Nah... Too much trouble to get wolves this side of the forest. Do I leave reverse footprints for him to get lost? Nah... Too much work. Besides, I think I would..." He looked at his foot. "Need a helping foot." The prankster laughed at his own joke, and then put his arm deep inside his hat, not only more than it would be logically possible, but also without taking it off his head. From inside, he took a cookie he had stolen from a batch earlier that day - of course, he stole more, but he had eaten them while watching the mother scold her child.

The boy then quickly ate the cookie, in only one bite because after remembering the story behind it he noticed he was hungrier than he thought. "Bummer, I should've stolen his lunch. Now I have to go to the town pick something to eat." He sighed and then stretched out, feeling lazy for having to go to the town, but his hunger spoke louder. The prankster then... Just lept off the tree and disappeared in a gust of wind.

-----

On the next morning, Morionem woke up in the same place he had his lunch the day before. He did search for a way back to the glade he had found, but he probably had chased after his lunch for much longer than he initially thought because he didn't find it. The swordsman then figured out he could as well as rest on the same place he had eaten the day before and search for the glade or another good place to train the following day, which came to be today.

His back was somewhat sore, but he had get used to sleeping in unusual places ever since he left his home - The man's sleeping habits were closer to a hobo than a knight, but what could he do if finding an adventure was a hard task? Even more so a profitable adventure? Slowly, Morionem sat on the branch he had slept and carefully picked his makeshift pillow (actually his backpack) - which wasn't as comfortable as usual, since it was filled with survival-required materials for three days (now two)- to not drop it on the ground. Its contents probably could survive the fall, but he didn't want to risk being robbed by the wind once again.

After descending the oak, Morionem took a deep breath of the forest's air. The morning birds sang beautifully, and the sun shone brightly in the sky. The first day didn't go as planned, but he was sure the second day would be better. The swordsman then walked around searching for some fruit tree. He actually expected more of those, but he eventually found an apple tree, knowing it was good to eat by the marks the bird left on some of the apples. Actualy there even was one bird eating an apple, but Morionem accidentally shooed it away when he used his sword to knock some apples down.

After putting his sword back at its scabbard, he ate half of the apples he managed to knock-off the tree, and put the other two inside his backpack so he could eat later. Then, he wondered about which direction he should take, and decided to go to his left, completely ignoring any cardinal direction he could write down to make sure where he was going to, sure his choice would lead him to a tranquil place.

-----

The boy, on his way to the town, found a man whom he had pranked the day before the following day, but long before the swordsman woke up. That was because he liked to wake up before dawn so he could get to the city by the time most inhabitants were waking up, because it was easier to make fun of them by said time, and he also could get a really good breakfast. But since he had met the victim of his pranks once again, he decided to pick up as much food as possible and then come back and await until his target woke up. Of course, the boy had overlooked the fact that said task was really, really boring and he fell asleep a couple of times. When he came to his senses after the third or fourth nap, the victim had already awoken...

"Oh shit, I'm late!" He leaped off the tree he was resting on, or rather threw himself on the ground. But instead of the usually falling, he floated down as a whirlwind surrounded him, gradually getting slower. When his fall stopped completely, he was still above ground by a handful of centimeters and the full fledged dust devil shrouded him from vision. Though the boy moved so fast he almost passed straight by the swordsman, who was eating some apples with a thoughtful look on his face. "As thoughtful as an idiot can get, hehehehehe..."

The prankster stopped the whirlwind he used as means of transportations and the dust and leaves who got carried by in the way slowly settled down. Hiding behind a tree - from the man's perspective - he quietly stared him down while thinking how to prank him today. In the meantime, he picked a sandwhich from inside his hat - the same one he used yesterday and the day before, actually he wore all of his current clothes everyday, it's not like he has another set or wants to anyways - and bit it, but he noticed it was a delicious peanut butter sandwhich so he slowly muched on it. "The kid will probably miss this sandwhich, hehehe... Damnit! I wish I remembered where I did pick this one..."

Soon after, the man finished eating a second apple, and apparently decided to save the rest for later. He then stood idle for some time, while the prankster wondered how he should prank the man today. "Ooh... I see he's going deeper inside the forest." He thought when the swordsman had finnally decided where to go. "Adventurer type, huh?" The boy heard a buzz close to him, the indistinguishable sound of a bee's flight. Giggling like a madman, the prankster swiftly jumped in the air... And then floated down the flower the bee was pollinating and sat on it, a beautiful sunflower that didn't even bent from being sat on. "Hello Miss Bee." He said, and the bee promptly turned to him, confused at the unnusual sight. Well, as much confused as a bee can get anyways. "I wonder if you and some of your bee friends wouldn't like... Taking care of a certain individual for me. I assure of you I pay well and won't cheat you, and as a proof I offer you this." The boy then handed the sandwhich to the bee, or rather, forcefully inserted it inside the bee's mouth. Even so, apparently the bee was pleased, so it took off and went to call some other bees. "Hehehe..."

-----

Morionem was tired, hungry, injuried but worse of all he hadn't been training as much as he had planned. This wasn't the first time he had gotten lost, but the situation wasn't any less dislikeable. It was one week since he had gone to the forest and every day at least one bad thing happened. For example, the wind had stolen his lunch, and he was attacked by some bees which were chasing after a ladybug. And right now he was fighting a wolf. The grey-furred beast had approached Morionem unnoticed, and only didn't clawed his tender flesh because the swordsman was keeping his shield hanging on his backpack, so when the wolf jumped at him from behind it only hit the shield, neither the backpack nor himself. Even then, the weight of the attack made Morionem fall on the ground, and unexpectedly hitting a shield instead of his intended target, as the prey fell so did the wolf, who hit the ground with his side and with enough force to skid.

At most, both of the combatants had only been bruised, and they stood afoot, facing each other. The first to move was the gray wolf: running towards the man before he could stand upright properly. Even then, instead of outright trying to get his shield, he drew his sword and held it with both hands. As the beast tried to bite him, Morionem dived to the side, relocating the attack with the flat side of his blade. He was still hit by a claw on his right arm, but the wound was barely a scratch so he didn't falter with the sword. On the other hand, less than a second after the leg of the wolf his the blade, given the way Morionem guarded himself from the tackle. It didn't outright slice the beast's leg away, but it fell down in front of Morionem. As he held the sword with his both hands, he didn't drop it, actually he only faltered a little, and had to adjust his left leg so he didn't lose his balance.

The beast, who had fallen belly-up, painfully stood as well as it could and, concentrating its weight on the right side of its body, tried to bite Morionem's leg off. But the swordsman, he was a fool, but he wasn't stupid- Well, maybe he were, but even then he dealt the coup de grâce on the animal by stabbing his sword more than halfway through the wolf's neck. Finnally, a blessing for Morionem. He picked the carcass and put it inside his back. He decided to find a good place to rest, make a fireplace, and have the best meal he could this week.

-----

There was he, once again watching that adventurer in the middle of the forest he called home. It was now three or four days since the uttermost chaos had arised in the city, messing up with everyone's lives. And by messing up with everyone's lives, he meant the serious way. And the serious way meant he couldn't just go there and prank people anymore. Well, actually he could, but in the state most people were, either it was hard to find a person in a state he'd be able to prank them or pranking someone could have a serious turn. He couldn't even steal himself some food, who knows if these people will have something to eat tomorrow? It wouldn't just be right to live with that doubt. Also if the boy took food for one of them, he'd want to do the same to everyone and he was too lazy to do it.

Since then, he was spending his days watching the lost adventurer and working in the city, but of course he lounged around town more than anything, so he never really had any useful info on the status of the chaos. The good thing is that he didn't need to get very precise information: only whose are the names that stand out, like "Luka" and "Anjalee", and what can one make out of it, like that rage-y magic. Still, he missed being able to prank people around. That was fun, and what he was currently doing was very boring.

... Well it appears to have stopped being boring and then go back right away. "Where did that wolf carcass come from?" Looking around, the prankster couldn't see any other wolf, which was a good sign because that meant the man wouldn't be killed right now. But that meant the wolves would eventually find him and kill him. He sighed. The prankster found amusing annoying and enraging dogs, but he felt like having to do it wasn't nearly as enjoyable. "On the other hand, that gives me something else to do." He thought, rolling his eyes and jumping from the tree he was sitting on to catch up with the adventurer.

-----

"Must run. Mustn't stop." Morionem thought to himself. Two days ago he had eaten an entire wolf, which now proved good because he spent basically the whole day yesterday running from the wolf's pack. He decided to run as much as he could, since the wolves could still track him through his smell, so even after the wolves got distracted by who knows why he kept running. The swordsman didn't even sleep, he just kept going. Right now, before even dawn, he was just almost crawling his way through the forest. His pace was slow, but he refused to stop.

His mind was divided, cursing the environment around him and telling himself to keep going. He felt so heavy and sore. Laying down right now would be great, but he refused. The swordsman would keep going. "I'm not going to stop now. I'm not going to die." A sound roared in the distance. Morionem couldn't make it out, but guessed it was some wild animal. He almost stopped using his sword as a walking cane for a second and unsheated it to use, but it was simply the blurs in his vision that had startled him. Still, he paid attention to the actions in the corner of his eyes, sometimes even forgetting to look forward.

He stopped at a tree to catch his breath. The swordsman leaned to it, and then suddenly sat on the ground as his legs faltered. He stared straight up, at the tree's leaves and branches. It seemed like a good place to rest, but he wouldn't dare to. No, he wouldn't stop now, he who had gone this far. Morionem wouldn't stop now even to rest. He tried to stand up, leaning on the tree to keep his balance, with aid of his sword as a cane. He refused to rest now, even if it looked like a great place to rest. He was so tired, his feet sore and his hands hurt. He wouldn't rest now.

... Well... Maybe if it were only for a few minutes...

-----

The prankster stretched himself and almost fell over the tree when he noticed he had indeed slept on one. The rising sun shone right at him, so he covered his eyes. "Damn you morning sun... Wait, did I really sleep in a tree? Damnit." He rubbed his eyes and looked around. Apparently he made a pack of wolves chase him until everyone fell asleep. They still slept under the tree the boy rested, but not that would be trouble for him. As usual he jumped and floated slowly until he reached the ground.

After that, he created a whirlwind that carried himself along with it. "What to do now?" He said in a slightly lower tone than usual, to not wake up the wolves, but since he started moving right away they wouldn't be a problem, at least not so soon. "I heard dogs have an excellent memory. I hope they forget me easily. Wait, or where those cats?" He casually strolled around and monologued with himself. He didn't care if he had to be anywhere else right now, as expected.

When he found a fruit tree he simply made all of the fruits fell down with a gust of wind. "Wait, don't I still have food kept?" He asked to the apple he had just gotten. "Oh whatever." He bit the apple ignoring any potentially useful advice it could lend him. After eating some of them, the boy just left the rest on the ground and kept moving shrouded inside his whirlwind. He spent a good half hour wandering around trying to remember what was he lounging, because he knew he should be doing something else. Not that he cared.

That is, he was doing that until he found that man laying down on the dirt. "Hey look, what do we have here?" He asked the uncouncious person. The boy then turned the adventurer to be face-up, and then took a good look at him. "You don't look good. But I know something that makes one feel much better!" He put his hand inside his cap, without taking it out of his head. Then he took a small jar out of it, one that fit on the palm of his hands. It was filled with some black paste, and the prankster was quick to open it and put his finger inside.

Then, he rubbed the paste under the man's nose in two swift, curvy movements in the directions of his cheeks. "Now you look much better. Everyone looks better with a mustache." He put the excess that laid on his fingers inside the jar, closed it and shoved it inside his hat. "Now I think I shouldn't leave you here or the wolves will eat you. And that would mean I can't prank you anymore, so let's go." The boy summoned a whirlwind again, and this time both him and the adventurer were swallowed but the wind.

-----

For the second time, Morionem awoke in the mountains. It was very close to the edge of the mountain, but it still let him have a good look at most of the forest. There was also a body of water nearby. It wasn't a lake, but it wasn't a puddle either, so it supplied the swordsman with enough water for him to drink and wash himself. Yesterday, he had awoken late at night and discovered he was saved. Truly, a spirit of nature had saved him (and the paint on his face was a proof of it), so he thanked the spirit and sworn to pay him. He didn't feel like sleeping, so after that he just stood awake studying his surroundings. Of course, his body disagreed and he quickly fell asleep.

But now, when he awoke, he felt something was... Off. He looked on the water to see if the trouble was with him. He looked normal, even the symbol on his face stood the same (he thought it was a good idea to keep it to please the spirit, he didn't know what it was for nor what it meant), so the smell must have been coming from something else. And when he realized what the smell was from. "Oh crap. Crap, crap, crap. The forest is on fire!" At the distance, a vast pillar of black smoke rose into the skies. Meanwhile, the scarlet flame danced on the ground, destroying anything on its path. "Is this what you want of me, nature spirit? To help you dealing with the fire?" He almost heard a sound that seemed like a person's laugh, so he concluded the spirit was please.

Morionem thought about running right now to where the forest fire was, but his body felt numb. He felt angry for not being able to help right now. He didn't know what to do, since he couldn't either go help nor stay here and leave the forest burn. He decided to pick the book he had gotten and meditate a little to clean his mind and calm down. Right now he was useless, and he felt useless. The book's cover had a tiger and dragon, circling around each other. In the middle, there was what he supposed to be a lake, a mountain and a giant cherry tree, which was scaled up to be the same size the mountain and the lake. Morionem didn't even had to guess the book's name, he was just confused what the center thing was supposed to mean. "Maybe nature or peace..." He guessed.

Opening The Tiger and the Dragon, Morionem went straight to the part about meditation. It took him some time to find it, because he usually went to the parts which could teach him some powerful magic skills or destroying fighting techniques. The meditation part described some techniques of breathing, some stuff about right place and time and more stuff about why the monks do it. He skimmed through all of that, because what he really needed right now was to meditate, not to read. The swordsman crossed his legs, as he was already sitting on the dirt.

Morionem had never meditated before, but he thought he was going well. He was calm, focusing on his breathing. "Inhale... Exhale..." He didn't even remember the forest fire-"Agh, damnit!" He lost his focus, getting worried about the forest fire again. "Calm down Morionem, calm down. Inhale... Exhale..." The swordsman tried the most he could to keep focused, and the place he was helped him a lot, because it was very quiet. All he needed to do was to make sure he didn't fall asleep. He yawned.

-----

The swordsman woke up suddenlly, and discovered he was still sitting with the book in front of him. "Damnit, I slept while I was meditating. Oh, fuck the forest!" He stood up and looked at the horizon. It seemed the fire had stopped, but now he could see how much of the woods was destroyed. He sighed, and turned behind to put his book inside his backpack. "Aw, man... Now the forest was already damaged. What can I do now?" He asked himself. There was no wind, almost no sound at all. "What do I do now, forest spirit?" The forest and none of its inhabitants seemed to answer. Suddenlly, Morionem had an idea. "Do I help the forest to be rebuilt? Is that what you want?" As if by luck or chance, the breeze passed by. The swordsman took that as an 'yes'. "I'll then tomorrow." He bowed and his belly groaned. "Oops, better get something to eat."

-----

On the next day, the swordsman woke up with the rising sun. He didn't know how long it would take for him to find his way back into the city, but he was going to try and find it. From where he had rested on the last few days, he could still see the area damaged by the fire. Focusing on its direction, he set off, hoping to find it, and his way back to the city.
Dolphins are some of the smartest animals, yes, but by human standards… Let's say you should praise the god that forces them to stay handless and underwater.
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Victin
 
Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2012 12:17 pm
Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Lordxana0 on Tue Jul 16, 2013 11:18 pm

[A few hours after Quest 30]

“Master Cloth we need your help!” Comedy’s voice rang out through the massive tent as she carried her brother toward the throne of the self proclaimed Lord of the Underground. The front of her dress had been drenched in her brothers blood, completely ruining it. The boy in her arms had gone a pale white, and the blood flow from his leg had begun to slow down about twenty minutes ago.

Cloth leaned forward and looked at the two. “So then, you failed”

Comedy laid her brother down before Cloth. “Please help, he is bleeding and I can’t feel his heart anymore!” she fell to her knees.

Cloth pulled himself up from his throne and bent over to examine the boy. “Quite a nasty cut, but then again those created back when I used the theater system are so much weaker than those I create now a days. The Big Top system traps powerful souls so much easier, and it makes their shells a bit better as well” he kicked the body of the boy. “Oh well, might as well just toss the trash ou...” he looked down and saw Comedy had attached herself to his leg. “Fine, fine, fine” he kicked the girl off his leg and sent her to the ground.

He reached down and yanked the mask from the boys face. As soon as the masked was pulled off the body caught flame and turned to ash. “You really want to be reunited with your brother?” Cloth said in an unnaturally dark tone.

Comedy looked up, her eyes suddenly full of fear.

“Then lets make sure you are with him.” Cloth brought himself down to one knee and slammed the half mask directly onto Comedy’s face. “Then you can be with him forever!”

Comedy let out a shrill scream that echoed across the entire bigtop.

[b]A few hours later[b/]

Cloth exited the big top and laughed. “Well then, how do you feel?”

Comedy exited behind him, her mask and her brothers fused together on her face. “I feel... completed” the voice that came from her was at once full of joy and sorrow, as if two people were speaking at once.

“Good, now I have an appointment to keep, go run along” Comedy nodded and ran off, spreading her arms and running off.

“Kids” Cloth shook his head and made his way out of the Carnival.

*
Cloth sat at the destined meeting point, a random underground tunnel system created by massive Burrow Worms, bored out of his skull and briefly wondering if the assassin guild had gotten lost in this domain. Or maybe this was some form of megar tactic to scare him. Which might work if he were a normal person. But he was the master of the Dark Carnival and Lord of the Underground, and it took much more than mercenaries to scare him.

“I find terming us mere ‘mercenaries’ quite the insult.” Said a cloaked man with a smaller figure at his side as he stepped out of the shadows. “We are exceptional mercenaries.”

Cloth stood up and laughed. “So it seems I have the joy of meeting the leader of the Assassins Guild, please excuse my thoughts, if I had known you could read minds I would have brought forth more happy images for you too see”

The Guildmaster shrugged. “Reading is but a mere parlor trick. Now I believe we have some business to discuss? Much as I relish the opportunity to get out of the hall for once I do have much to attend to after this.”

Cloth clapped his hands. “Yes yes living lives such as ours can be quite stressful, let us not wait any longer” he let out a short whistle and two men dressed as clowns came out of the shadows behind him, each carrying a rather large chest on their shoulders. Cloth snapped and they dropped them on the ground, opening them to reveal hundreds of golden coins and ten of small objects inside. “Impressed?”

The assassin seemed to consider for a moment. “Objects of this magnitude are quite high to come by, What is it that you want?”

Cloth laughed. “To build me a house” his voice dropped into a low growl. “What do you think I want, I want you to kill something, I don’t not hire a metal smith to bake a cake after all” he coughed and chuckled. “Please excuse me, it has been quite some time since I have had to speak to someone that might consider me an equal, to put it bluntly I want to hire you and your merry band of murderers to assassinate the peoples hope”

The Guildmaster paused after Cloth said this. “You want us to kill an emotion? Specifically an emotion that flourishes while one tries to stamp it out? This seems a tad absurd, unless of course you’ve come across the personification of hope. Which I rather doubt.”

“Consider it a compliment to your skill that I would ask for such a thing from you, unless you believe you can’t do it, in which case I am sure someone else wants all of this gold and rare magic items” he snapped and the clowns began to close the chests.

The mastermind snorted. “Of course we cannot kill hope, none can. It is in the thing’s very nature. One cannot kill hope any more than one can drown a fish. We can kill those who inspire others but that is all that is possible.”

Cloth sighed dramatically. “You know there used to be days when one could talk in metaphor and others would pick up on it.” Cloth snapped and his men put the chests down. “When I say kill hope I mean I want you to throw the people into despair, I don’t care how you do it, or how long it takes, I am saying I will provide you with these chests to start the job, and a third chest once you feel you have caused as much hopelessness as possible”

The man smiled under his hood. “I assure you there is good reason I do not deal in metaphors, if you wish for us to throw people into despair you should have said so in the first place, because this we can do.”

The masked man giggled a bit. “Of course I do not mean your garden variety despair, I mean complete hopelessness, I want the first thought of every man, woman, and child in the city and beyonds first thought when they wake up to be ‘I wish I had died in my sleep’ that is what I want provided from your services, can you supply it?”

“The castle is primed for just such an environment, people are persecuted left and right for supposed ‘guild affiliations’, Storm and Drive who would most likely throw any scheme out of sync are out of the game, Severed Claw and their new guildmaster are too focused on ‘legitamancy’. It is all too easy”

Cloth stamped his foot. “It is not enough though, I want more, I want” Cloth took a deep breath. “I want anarchy, I want children throwing stones and beating each other, I want women afraid to leave the house at night, I want men beating each other to try and find some scrap of good in life, I want blood, death, chaos,” Cloth laughed. “I want a breeding ground for a new Carnival! If you can provide that, if you can stamp out the light that flickers in peoples souls, the idea of a better tomorrow, then I will give you more then you can imagine”

The Guildmaster went quiet. “You would not be questioning the skill of my guild and by extension my skill, are you?” The tunnel seemed to grow darker around him. “Because I assure you I will not suffer such an affront.”

Cloth laughed and his voice dropped and he began to mimic that of a little girls. “Not at all, I just thought it would be funny if you said you could do all that and more” he broke into a fit of laughter that could only be describe as mad. “Grow a sense of humor old pal” his voice returned to normal. “So then, is our contract completed?”

“Indeed.” he snapped his fingers and the chests rose off the ground and immediately floated over to him. “in the meantime as a gesture of.....good faith I will loan you Hara, my right hand.” He gestured and the cloaked woman walked over to Cloth. “I would warn you though, I am quite fond of her. Should any harm come to her by your hand I will be displeased, and there will be words between you and I.”

He waved that off. “Buddy, friend, you worry too much, I can already tell me and her are going to be bestest friends forever, isn’t that right?” He turned to look at Hara from behind the mask.

The woman looked back at him. “I have literally killed people I liked better than you, but I will be at your service until this contract is done.”

“See bestest friends forever!” Cloth clapped. “And with that I have a bit of a journey to make back to my carnival, I have a hybrid of two twins I recently fused together I need to make sure has both stabilized and not killed half my performers”

“Very well then, our business has concluded.” The Guildmaster and the chests disappeared like they were never there.

“So then new bestest friend, how do you get your hair like that?” Cloth began to walked away. “Because you look stunning, also you can kill the clowns to take out your anger at me, they are disposable”

Hara threw two knives without looking and killed the clowns. “I suppose working for you may not be that bad.”

“Oh no not at all” Cloth’s voice turned cold as ice. “It is going to be so much worse” he laughed. “We are gonna kills lots of people, some of them might even provide some form of challenge for you, imagine that!” he pulled out a bracelet and tossed it to her. “I am putting you in charge of my Arcana Forces, that will give you command and control of them from any place inside of the castle, I am going to be busy preparing my own things, but I have a vendetta against a certain self-righteous red head that you can take care of while I work.”
Who you going to call? ME!
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Lordxana0
 
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2012 10:36 pm
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Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Victin on Mon Jul 22, 2013 3:05 pm

Likovya’s popularity in the city was dropping. She had had a few friends before the riots -- “friends” in that they would let her stay at their place for a while and sometimes feed her -- but neutrality wasn’t exactly made for keeping people happy. Throwing her weight in with the guilds had only alienated those of her friends who were against them, and apparently her name was going around the slums as someone dangerous and unstable. True, perhaps, but not the best reputation to have.

Just about the only good thing she could think of right now was that the baker was officially re-opening his store. It hadn’t been closed, exactly, but he had done less business and tried not to let too many people in, especially when the anti-guilds had taken the podium. Today, though, she could go in and treat herself. She even intended to pay.

When she walked in, the bakery had a few people inside. There were more than during the time of the riots, but it wasn’t quite bustling yet. The baker nodded at her as she entered, and he smiled when she held up a few coins. It always made him happy when she got his goods honestly, although she liked to think stealing some of the older food and leaving a few coins was a charming quirk.

“What’ll you have?” he asked, wiping some flour on the front of his apron. “I’ve got some fresh bread and a shipment of jam, and there are some pastries about to come out of the oven. Or...” He lowered his voice conspiratorially and glanced at a platform covered with glass. “I made a cake just for today. I can sneak you a little extra icing.”

The cake looked delicious, and she knew it would be rich and moist. “I’ll take a slice of that,” she said, setting her coins on the table. “A nice thick one.”

“I’ll get the knife.” The baker stepped into the back room. Soon after he left a loud noise reverberated in between one of the shelves of the storefront, turning everyone’s gaze to a rather clumsy client bumped on one of the shelves and almost made it and its contents fall flat on the floor. The client excused for this, ashamed, and the baker quickly came back from the back room, knife in hand, to see what had just happened. After realizing the situation, he resumed to his previous activity. “Wait a minute...” He turned to face Likovya. “What just happened to the cake?”

She looked away from the client and saw that a large chunk of the cake had been cut out. “I don’t know,” she said. “I looked away for just a second, and it was gone.”

The baker glared at her. “That cake was cut cleanly, and you’re the only one in here with a knife except me, and I know I haven’t touched it.”

“But --” She tried to protest or at least get him to lower his voice, but he spoke over her, loud enough so that everyone in the room could hear.

“I’ve turned a blind eye to your stealing, because you’d never take too much and always left a little money. I thought you needed the food, too. But this is just too far.”

“Where would I have hidden it?” She held out her arms. “Do you see any place for me to hide a piece of cake?”

“You must have handed it off to an accomplice,” the baker said. “I should have known I couldn’t trust you. Claiming to be neutral indeed... you probably just wanted to work both sides and get twice the money.”

“No...”

“Well, it won’t work here. If I see your face in this room again, I’ll call the city guard on you.”

Likovya didn’t even bother to collect her money before storming out of the bakery. She didn’t know if someone had set her up deliberately or if it was just a painful coincidence, but by this time tomorrow, people would be talking about the crazy knife thief. Only one of those words was supposed to be connected to her. She would find whoever had done this, and at the very least he would be sent running back to the bakery to apologize and clear her name. Luckily to her, the culprit was playfully watching the scene, from above the colorful awning of the store in front of the bakery, sitting on the eaves of the store’s roof. His leg hanged on the air, and his face sported a tongue sticking out of his mouth. The boy then showed Likovya a fat slice of cake that laid on his hand and then shoved it inside his hat, without taking it out.

“So it was you,” she muttered. “Bastard!” She pulled a knife from her wrist and prepared the throw it, but not too hard. She didn’t want to get into a habit of killing children.

From the people who could see the scene, they either were looking at Likovya or at wherever she had aimed her knife. Sadly for her, the boy was already used to being stealthy, so he simply winked at her and vanished without a trace, leaving the knife to hit the air. Some of the watchers gave her strange looks, and a few people whispered among themselves. She thought she heard someone say, “Is that the girl who fought all those anti-guilds?”

“I guess. I thought she was just adventurous, but she might be a little... you know...”

Likovya glared at them before clambering up the side of the bakery to retrieve her knife. It wasn’t bent or scratched from landing on the roof, so she tucked it back into her sleeve and headed off through the streets.

*

A few hours later, Likovya was hungry and tired. She didn’t have much money left -- just enough to buy a little meat from the butcher, and even he had looked at her strangely. There wasn’t anywhere she could think to go, so she kept wandering. By the middle of the afternoon, she was working her way through the slums. “Hey girl.” A voice ranged behind her. Turning to see the hidden person in a dark alley calling for her, she pulled a knife from her belt.

“Who’s there?” she called.

“Just me.” The boy from earlier smiled at her, from the other end of the alleyway.

She took a few steps forward. “Who are you? What do you want with me?”

At her first step forward, he leaped back, but as she spoke he just stood where he was. “Sorry for earlier, I didn’t mean to make that baker guy ban you from his store, I didn’t know he was the angry type.”

She lowered her knife but didn’t put it away. “If you’re really sorry, you can tell him that I’m not a thief.”

He pondered a little on what she had just asked him to do. “Hmm... We’ll see.” He then snapped his fingers as if an idea had just struck him. “Hey! Follow me and I might hand you a slice of that cake too.”

“Fine. Just remember I’m armed.”

“If you say so...” He then disappeared as a gust of wind. Literally, he vanished once more and a breeze flowed through the alley, stopping right behind Likovya. “I’ll go slowly, so you can keep up.” He laughed, but his laugh faded as he once again turned into wind and entered another alley.

Likovya took off after him, only slightly interested in the cake. She still had a chance to... negotiate having her name cleared. Not that she knew much about negotiation. She also wanted to find out if he actually was magic or just using it. Either way, she was unnerved enough to want to keep an eye on him.

*

He became himself again at almost every turn, save for those in which there could be someone seeing them, so following him wasn’t that hard. It was harder to tolerate that permanent smirk on his face, it surely seemed like he was mocking her.

“We are here.” He said, almost whispering to her. The alleyway they were in gave them a clear look of the store right in front of it. It had plenty of fruits and other vegetables hanging from the shelves, though everything seemed crowded, one product almost over another. It didn’t help the shopkeeper was a bear of a man. He was bigger than all shelves of the store, and seemed he could crush a person with one hand only. Also the fact he kept polishing a broadsword apparently scaled up to his size over the balcony probably scared most of the wannabe thieves.

His stern gaze could pretty much see the whole place, so coming in and out undetected was nearly, if not outright, impossible. That didn’t stop a little boy, no more than 10 years of age, of trying to do so. His clothes were ragged and dirt, and he held a sack that seemed empty. The little thief was now correcting that and filling the sack with as many fruits as he could carry, as fast as possible. His haste, on the other hand, caused a shelf full of tomatoes and apples fall down to the floor, dropping all of its contents and making a loud noise.

The owner looked directly to where the shelf had been just now, and the boy leaped to the side and tried to hide himself, pleading to the saints to not be caught. The man smiled inside his beard, and kept polishing the sword, nonchalantly. The boy opened his eyes to notice nobody had came to stop him, and bumped his free fist in the air while pronouncing a silent “Yes!”. He resumed to put some of the fallen fruits (the ones that didn’t splattered on the floor) inside his bag and then left the store silently, after proceeding to ran as fast as he could, which was very fast.

The shopkeeper walked his way to the fallen shelf and started rearranging everything on its place. The prankster, who watched all of this, got a slice of cake from inside his cap and with a sign of his hand asked Likovya to wait here. He turned into a gust of wind and silently sneaked inside the store, leaving the slice of cake in the balcony and then going back to the alley right away. “And that’s what I wanted the cake for.”

“To leave it for a shopkeeper?” She looked from the strange boy to the cake and back again. “I don’t understand.”

“The boy’s mother is bedridden and the father’s working. That’s why he started to rob things. The shopkeeper on the other hand knows that and pretends not to see the boy. Me on the other hand discovered this a while ago, and since I was also hungry I decided to enjoy the fact that I wanted a slice of that cake, and rob them for me and give a small token of... Well-doing to the shopkeeper.” He put his hand inside his hat and got a slice of cake, big enough for two people, along with a knife. He cut the cake and handed one third of to Likovya. “For you.”

“Thanks.” She could hardly take it back to the bakery, so she took a little bite. It was as delicious as she had expected. “What are you, exactly?”

“It’s been some time since I was sure...” He interrupted himself by taking a bite of his own slice, and then enjoyed the taste a little before swallowing. “But if you will, you can call me by what other people do.”

“What’s that?”

“Little devil, damned kid, you know... Or just Saci, if you want.” He bit his slice again.

“Saci,” she repeated. “I’m Likovya, or the crazy knife girl. Whichever you prefer.”

“Sure.” He smiled in amusement. “Crazy knife girl it is then.”

She should have been annoyed, but his smile was disarming. It was almost enough to make her forget all the magic. Of course, if the magic had been used to help people... Great. Now I have to accept that maybe it isn’t all that bad. “And don’t you forget those first two parts. I’ll see you around, maybe.” Still munching on the cake, she headed off.
Dolphins are some of the smartest animals, yes, but by human standards… Let's say you should praise the god that forces them to stay handless and underwater.
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Victin
 
Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2012 12:17 pm
Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Qara-Xuan Zenith on Wed Jul 31, 2013 11:24 pm

Justice

Timelime placement: about fifteen years prior to entering the Castle

The redheaded girl sat with her back against the big bed, brow creased, glaring at the paper in her hand.

"Ben! BenbenbenbenbenbenbenbenBEN!" The girl's concentration was broken by a whirlwind of a six-year-old bounding into the room, light brown ringlets bouncing lightly on his head as he grabbed her arm and tugged. "Bennnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn he's going to teach us to do more Cool Things with a sword and you're MISSING it come ON!"

The eight-year-old didn't seem to hear her brother; she just pouted at the sheet, murmuring, "It isn't right."

One look at his sister told the boy all he needed to know, for all he was so young; Ben, Charlie knew, was like himself: too stubborn to give up, too proud to ask for help. The little boy ran out of the room.

He reappeared a few moments later, towing a taller boy with dark brown hair. Alex would make it better. Charlie dragged his brother right over to where Ben sat, before scampering out again.

Prince Alexander sat cross-legged beside his sister, stretching an arm around her shoulders. "Still stuck on that assignment?" he asked softly.

"It isn't right," she repeated. "There's no way to give everybody what they deserve, no way to make everybody happy. It isn't right, and I can't fix it."

"Maybe you're thinking about it the wrong way. Say... let's say it was a case where a man broke his friend's arm-- I know, it's not, but let's pretend, okay?"

She nodded tersely, and the nine-year-old prince went on. "Well, some would say it's right to cut off the arm that hurt his fellow." He took a quick glance at her horrified expression before shaking his head. "But that's barbaric, to my mind. It isn't right to you. And it's not justice if it makes you be a monster.

"But let's say you heard his case out, and you felt he was in the right, his actions so defensible that you want to let him go without a word-- would that be all right?" He answered his own question before she could fumble for words. "No, you can't do that either. Even if you think it's what they should get, it isn't good for you to do that; it sends the message that your justice is cheap, that your justice is no justice at all.

"You'll find something in the middle, something that works." Ben's brother paused, waiting until she met his serious green eyes with her hazel ones. "The most important thing to remember is this: Justice isn't about what they deserve to get; it's about what you deserve to give. I have a feeling that if you spend some time thinking that over, you'll find an answer soon enough."

He grinned and stood, offering her a hand up. "But in the meantime, I know a little boy who would very much like to play with his sister."

Ben smiled and accepted the hand with a thoughtful expression, already feeling better. Alex always made things better.
Lead by example. Get lost in a swamp.

AS DICTATED TO INSTANTIATION 17-01-18-01.
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Qara-Xuan Zenith
 
Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:34 pm

Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Blurred_9L on Sun Aug 04, 2013 7:04 pm

Old chambers

5 years ago...

Silhouettes moved slowly in the dark, a gentle light showing the way forward. Firm steps on the vanguard, shaky boots at the back. A swift breeze ran through the large chamber, making the moving figures brace themselves with their robes and cloaks. The sound of a door unlocking echoed through the cave, followed by the sound of blades being unsheathed.

“Are you ready, guys?” the man at the front spoke, not bothering to look back to his two companions. They both nodded, though the boy found himself regretting his decision not long after. Although he tried his best not to start shaking uncontrollably, his clattering teeth made it hard for him to concentrate on what was about to happen. He looked around himself, reassuring himself in the familiarity of this place. His eyes had adjusted to the lack of light in the cave so he could distinguish the shapes of pillars around the room. If he were to look closer and with a better light, he would find messages in a lost tongue that spoke about legends and heroes of old.

He gasped as the door opened, holding his breath for a second that felt longer than usual. He could feel how his body tensed up as the darkness in the next room began seeping into the one they were in. He wasn’t a child anymore, and he didn’t sure live in a place that would encourage staying as one. So, as a way to prove himself, he had come to the old Chamber of the Crown together with his friend; after all, soon they would be old enough to be sent into the Northern Fortress Assembly where the future of their lives would be decided.

“Gee, Darren, concentrate! This is no time to be daydreaming.” said the girl to his left, startling him for a bit and returning his mind into the present. The door to the next room had been opened completely, but even though the light of the torch shone, illuminating the room they were in, the next one didn’t show any sign of lighting up. He tried to say ”I’m not daydreaming” but his own nerves betrayed him and his words were nothing more than an unintelligible stutter. Thankfully, the other two were too concentrated on the task at hand to notice.

The man that opened the door stepped back, holding both of his blades in front of him, readying himself for what was about to come. “Wendy, don’t let go of that torch! Darren, don’t let these guys get to her!” he ordered as he took another step back. Wendy darted to the side at the same time four shadowy spheres sneaked into the room, momentarily fleeing from the scarce light that came from the torch, regrouping in the corners of the room in which its light did not reach. But surely simple Coal Whispers, as people called them for being a common sight in coal mines, were not the thing that made them stay on their toes. No, it was something else that had put them on guard. The blob of darkness that had stayed at the entrance of the next room began to move slowly towards them, shrinking as it came closer and closer, increasingly taking a more humanoid shape, though it had no distinguishing features itself, staring at it was like staring down into the abyss.

“That’s a spectre...” he could hear Wendy say from the other side of the room. “It looks kind of weird, doesn’t it?” she asked as the spectre moved further away from the place it was guarding. Its movements were sluggish and he seemed to already have picked its opponent.

“That’s because he’s got a bone to pick with me.” The man started, readying himself to lunge towards his shadowy opponent. “Don’t worry, it won’t attack you.” he added, sensing Darren’s incoming objection. Not that it would actually dispel the fear within the boy, but it was better than having a discussion mid-fight. “Just take care to get rid of the others... and don’t get in the way.” His voice became serious as he said those words, leaving behind the friendly tone he had used up until that tone. Darren eyed nervously his surroundings, looking for the Coal Whispers, but they were nowhere to be seen. His hand tightened around a rather large kitchen knife which Wendy had given to him that morning.

”Here” she had gestured as they began to wander into the forest just outside of town. She took the knife out from a satchel she had been carrying and carefully handed it to him. ”I knew you wouldn’t bring something to defend yourself, so please take it.”

“Um... thanks...” he hesitated as he took the knife from her hands and looked at it as if it were about to become alive and attack him. “...but I don’t think we’ll be needing this.” Wendy frowned immediately. “A...anyway, shouldn’t you be the one carrying something to defend yourself?” he asked her.

Wendy moved her head in disagreement, showing Darren a knife holster hidden by her cloak. “I already have. I actually came prepared.” saying that, they both resumed their way towards the meeting point. “Unlike you... gee Darren, what are you going to do without me?” she teased, making the boy lower his head in shame a bit.


Darren returned to the reality as he felt tiny teeth trying to gnaw at his arm. Startled, he looked around to find two Coal Whisperers nearby, and a third one that was currently trying to pierce the leather gauntlet he was given to protect his arm. He tried to shake him off, dropping the kitchen knife to the floor with the motion. The sound of the knife hitting the floor echoed through the chamber and he could barely hear Wendy’s “Oh for god’s sake!” exasperated expression. He began to panic, quickly turning his head to his sides looking for the others. A second Coal Whisperer jumped towards him, showing his teeth at him as he approached.

A knife flew in front of him, piercing the small monster in an instant. The knife continued flying towards the nearby wall and bounced off of it. “Gee Darren, seriously, what would you do without me?” said Wendy, her face eerily illuminated by the torch on her left hand. Darren noted the annoyance in her voice, but soon remembered he had more pressing matters at hand... quite literally, as the other Coal Whisperer kept biting his arm, to the point it had begun to hurt. Darren stomped lightly on the floor around him, trying to find the dropped knife. The sound of metal showed him the place it had fallen, and before the third beast could attack him and the current one ate his arm, he grabbed it and stabbed it. No blood spewed out of the monster nor did it make any sound, it just simply vanished into the darkness. Darren sighed with relief.

“Watch out...!” shouted Wendy at him just as he lowered the knife. The remaining enemy had flung itself forward at Darren. He put his arms in front of his body, as if to block the incoming attack, closing his eyes at the same time; but this sudden assault, like the other one, didn’t get a chance to reach him. He felt the air around him begin to chill as he began opened his eyes, surprised that his body wasn’t being tackled by the Coal Whisper. But there it was, floating in mid-air with a menacing look, its body encased in crystalline ice.

“Ice? ...Magic?” he muttered as he regained his composure, if he had enough to be called that. Wendy ran over to him and began knocking on the ice, as if she was just as surprised as he was.

“S...Stop that! What if it comes out of it?”

“Nah, don’t worry.” she dismissed Darren’s remark. “Anyway, I took care of another one a while ago while you were out of it. “You think Trent’s done with that spectre?” They both looked in the direction the unlocked door was, but there was no clue of either the spectre or their companion.

“Oi, you don’t think he...” said Darren, but was soon interrupted by a friendly familiar voice.

“Nope, I didn’t. It seems like the guy was more weakened than I had thought.” Darren jumped into the air, startled. He hadn’t expected Trent to show up out of nowhere. It’s not like he doubted his strength, but him suddenly disappearing was not a good sign for him. “Anyway, we’ll have to work harder from now on. An inexperienced magic user and... you.” Trent said, sounding a bit disappointed when he said you, referring to Darren. “You guys won’t have it easy in a few years... unless you end up like me. Not like that’s completely different anyway...”

The three of them stayed there without saying a word for a while. They had tried to avoid mentioning the Northern Fortress Assembly, even though all three of them had been thinking about that for a while. With the group unable to say a word to the others, the chamber had fallen into the same silence it had before they intruded inside. The door that led into the inner rooms was still open, waiting for them to discover what was hidden inside of it.

“Let’s go outside for a while. I think we all need fresh air.” said Trent, trying to cheer up the other two before leading the way outside. Wendy quickly followed, turning around to look at Darren after a few steps. He could see her half-hearted smile trying to reassure him.

“We’ll be fine.”

----------

”Well... were we?” thought Darren as he looked down from the roof of one of the buildings in the city. On his hand he held a piece of paper he had found torn off from a wall. He wondered with rage who would be the next victim of the unfortunate events. A fellow guild member? A civilian? A member of the city guard? It probably wouldn’t matter until it ended.

Awakening from his thoughts he felt the cold touch of still against his throat. “Who?” he asked, the curse of anger beginning to act up again.

“Oh, just a passerby. Don’t mind me.” whispered a female voice into his ear before moving the menacing knife away from him. The woman’s sudden appearance and her dark robes quickly gave away her identity.

“Assassin.” he pronounced with disgust. “You must be Hara then?” he asked, remembering what Marcus had said about her. He felt another surge of anger trying to rise up. ”You were all supposed to get out of there, weren’t you?”

The assassin shook her head amused. “Don’t you wish I was?”
Why should we do the right thing?
-Well... because it's the right thing to do, there's no other good reason.

Am I a bad guy trying to be good, or a good guy trying to convince himself that he's not the bad guy?
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Blurred_9L
 
Joined: Mon Nov 05, 2012 7:05 pm
Location: Guadalajara, Jalisco, MX

Re: Floating Castle RP - Side Stories

Postby Adell on Mon Aug 05, 2013 7:54 pm

The air went first, or at least that was how it seemed. Like the blade in his stomach had sucked away the oxygen, leaving behind a hollowness that no amount of gasping for breath was going to fill.

He couldn’t remember why he was here, but he knew there should be pain. That would have made sense. There was sharp metal, and a chilly pressure behind his ribs, like that time Hector accidentally caught his arm with Ivory’s edge, or when Eliziya’s hand collided with his face. Pain was important. He remembered that from a long time ago: a hand on his and a whispered warning in his ear. “This isn’t dying. This isn’t dying, Eri, it hurts because it isn’t dying, you’re alright. We’re alright.”
It hadn’t been the first lie, or the last.

There was a figure, one Tamar dimly recognized as Salvantas, except... not. There was something cold and brutal in the man’s eyes, which was being shoved hurriedly aside in the urgency of the moment. Except Tamar couldn’t figure out why Salvantas of all people would be nervous, and he didn’t have time to question it, before there was a short burst of pain in his neck, followed by black.

Safe to say, if Salvantas had a plan, fate chose not to go along with it.

The world came back in a slow, uncomfortable slide, tilted sideways where Tamar had fallen. Firefly. He remembered her. A sputtering, nervous flicker in the dark, still bright, even now. She had to be alive she had to. Hector, Julius, Marcus, Anji, Jenny, everyone was alive even though they really shouldn’t be... But when he tried to move, the darkness pushed him back. There was a hot, metallic taste in his mouth, and the shadows at the edges of his vision were crawling, as if a swarm of bugs were eating the streets, leaving just the black beneath. The emptiness that had existed, Tamar remembered reading, before the gods killed the giants, used their bodies to make land, and their blood to make the sea. Was something like that happening now? There certainly seemed to be enough blood for it...

The next jolt of movement was sharp and unexpected, but painless, and suddenly there was someone else. He knew he was being moved, and he figured he should be frightened, but why be scared of the intentions of an unknown stranger when you were already dying anyway?

The figure that took him was tall, robes and cloth obscuring most of their body. Was it man, or some kind of creature, he could not tell as his perception fell between sight and darkness. The world was spinning and stretching up into the sky even while his body finally came to a stop. The being let go of his arms and knelt beside him ; its face was obscured with the colors of white and red. Was it some kind of apparition? Even as his own life slipped away, the one that looked over him looked as if they never had any to begin with.

A glove lifted up delicately and touched the tips of its fingers against the object that still embed itself within his chest. Tamar wanted to move his body in protest, or say something about it probably was not a good idea to be poking the blade lodged in his chest, but all he could muster were painful gasps. Another hand landed upon his forehead, pushing his head back to the ground. Light gathered from the palms of their hands, which spread over the young man, it felt warm and brought with it some of his previous sensations before getting stabbed. For a moment it felt like life was returning to him, which unfortunately left his body to make the painful realization that it still had a sword sticking in it. He had just enough time to scream once in pain for passing out again.

Asha looked over the unconscious boy with curious interest as the ether poured from her hands. As his body healed Asha would gently inch the weapon out of it, careful to give the magic time to heal the area as the sword was removed from it; too quickly and he would bleed out before her magic could close the wound. Halfway into the healing process, a ping of energy hit against her chest. Her body limped back, almost falling to the ground and breaking the spell, but the silent masked figure persevered in spite of the sudden dizziness.

Tamar knew all this because he felt it; as Asha’s magic poured into his unconscious mind, for however briefly, he felt what she felt, like an echo. Some kind of connection ...thanks to the magic within his own body, perhaps?

“Who...”

The echo effect was strange, but it was something to focus on. His mind drifted, following her pain to its cause., and, whether she knew it or not, he reached back, the briefest connection of ether to ether. One magic coming into contact with something altogether different. It felt like enchanting Echo for the first time.

...There was a battle in the middle of the city; Luca and a young girl , faceless in the dark, were in danger and only Asha’s magic could safely handle the situation. There were warnings, pleadings for her to abstain from such an action, but she dare not risk the life of a confused child, and certainly not the one of her only companion. Tamar could see this, and could see the aftermath as well, Luca and the girl , taking Asha to safety, her body… No, that wasn’t physical damage, it was more like her soul was what had been harmed; It had been given to the ether to fuel her power.

It was strange but Tamar felt relief as well, relief that she had saved her friend. Luca tended to her as best he could, but the circumstances made it near impossible for him to be of any help, and for one reason or another they never bothered to check her injuries, as if there was nothing to check to begin with.

This was when the young girl stepped, in. She gave some of her own energy to stabilize the masked woman. It was… an act that surprised both of them, for they had wronged her in the past. Feelings of regret and confusion circled the boy’s consciousness as Asha felt the embrace of the young girl who most likely just saved her soul. Was it some joke from the fates that she would be helped by someone who she had threatened, that she had antagonized? She did not understand why things had worked out in this way but she felt she owed this girl now. That was why she looked for someone the girl had cared for, in a way. At least, that was one of the reasons, the most obvious reason. It was difficult for Tamar’s mind to perceive as much as he was, let alone make sense of the feelings of a being of such power. There was more there, he could feel it, but it as his body began to heal it became harder and harder to comprehend it all., and at some point, the barely felt connection shattered, like the stem of a wine glass .

Her magic was suffocating and yet liberating all at the same time; it felt as if he was being crushed by the weight of a cow but now had the strength of Hector. Was this what it was like to have magic this powerful? And just as it reached his breaking point, it suddenly all vanished; a sudden jolt that caused the boy’s eyes to open in shock.

His first reaction was to wish he were still unconscious because ow .Yes, that would be the pain he had been wondering about before. But it was a dull, constant ache. Or a phantom pain, the kind he was already used to and could cling to for reassurance rather than shirk away from in dread. His hand went automatically for Echo, only to find him gone, and Tamar remembered the clattering of metal on cobblestone, the flash of the fire going out along with his vision, Salvantas and then...

Alright, so that was disturbing. This was about as far as his memory went before everything blurred into a cacophony of panic and incoherent shapes.

Salvantas. Salvantas had been there, hadn’t he? He’d been promising something, but now he was gone, and so was the darkness of the alleyway. For a split second, Tamar wondered if it had even really happened at all. There were faces. A laughing girl, a crying boy... a sword... he twisted buildings and laughing children seemed too bizarre to have actually happened. What about Salvantas? Was Salvantas okay? Where had he gotten to? Hell where had Tamar himself ended up?

There was a flicker of sunlight, and Tamar’s heartbeat slowed a little as his eyes fell on Echo, lying perfectly straight, lined up against the edge of a cobblestone wall. Then it sped right up again when he rnoticed the arm, reaching out to grab the hilt... it had not been that colour the night before. He knew blood stains when he saw them and a wave of brief terror rushed down his spine, along with the phantom pain in his forehead, when he realised just how much of it there was, and how little he understood it. “W-what in the saints damned...”

He recognized blood loss too, the way the world tried to tilt him in the opposite way to the one he was trying to take as he stood upright, shakily. He tried very hard not to look at the obscene amount of blood, hoping, almost ridiculously, that most of it was his. The pain suggested yes, but it was more the aftershock of pain, really: the sensation of something recently healed. Whatever caused all this might as well have not have happened, for all the physical reminders and memories that were left behind.

Common sense kicked in as he looked around, trying to figure out where he was. It was morning: but barely: the sun was rising between the buildings of... The workmen’s district, by the looks of it. People were trying to avoid the streets at this time so nobody had found him. He was in some corner of the city which had not yet been taken by the anti-faction, and eventually his somewhat messed up mind placed it within shouting distance of their current hideout. Just as well, really. He didn’t much fancy walking up to a local covered in his own blood and asking for directions. In the current climate, he’d probably be skewered for it.

...He’d probably be skewered again.

“Hector. Find Hector,” the last remaining logical part of Tamar’s brain piped up. “Worry about the blood later but for saint’s praises, get out of the street!” It seemed as good a plan as any so he clung to the wall for balance, resheathed Echo with trembling hands, and started walking. If he had any flashes of recollection, or vague outlines of memory that didn’t feel like his own, he chose to ignore them for the moment.

Above, on the roofs of one of the buildings, the masked woman watched as Tamar drifted back into the city. Her head lowered, silently, as she looked down upon her robed figure, a flicker of etheric energy seeping from her ‘wound’. Her soul was still damaged from her last battle, and healing this boy’s wounds to the extent that he needed had been taxing. With her obligation filled however, she would have to ignore the damage and return to her work. This war needed to continue, everything she and Luca worked for demanded it.
If you ever need to ask the questions "Am I needed? Should I help them?" The answer is always yes. Always.
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Adell
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Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2012 9:31 pm
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