Yigros [IC | High Fantasy]

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The Cyberiad Council
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Liberal Democratic Socialists

Yigros [IC | High Fantasy]

Postby The Cyberiad Council » Wed Jul 17, 2019 8:28 pm

Three Days ago...

In the thin crowd of traders and village folk walked past without bothering the white-robed visitor. Though, none resisted staring, wondering if the whispered rumors were true. Despite the raised hood, it was still plain to see this was no regular traveler. No grime stained his boots, nor the hem of his flawlessly white robes that seemed pure enough to stand in relief of even the freshest snow. His features were hidden, though the few that heard him speak said his accent was strange, melodic, as pleasant as the finest bard.

He stood near the edge of the shabby market as still as a statue, patiently waiting for an acquaintance to return. Light, cheerful voices drifted into his hearing as the hooded figure felt something tug on his robe. Moving for the first time in over an hour, he looked down at a little elven girl who in turn looked up at him in curious wonder. She saw a fair face with piercing blue eyes and golden hair cut short and left unkempt. A pair of thin scars ran down the right of his face, a reminder of a long ago battle. The girl, no more than five, proudly presented a preserved flower, snapdragon if the man's memory served, old and brown with age. She had heard stories of the robed man, and wanted to see if they were true.

A smile spread on the man's face as he knelt down and reached out to touch the flower with the tip of his silver-clad hand. Golden light flowed across the gauntlet and through the flower. Color and life flowed into the shriveled plant, returning it to the height of it's bloom. The girl giggled in delight, running back to show her friends. Blessed with The Light, the flower's bloom would not fade for many years hence, a lasting reminder of Mu'Rhodin's power; or at least it was in the mind of the hooded figure.

"Performing parlor tricks now?" the voice of an approching Ergrasar rumbled jovially from behind the man's post.

"Anything to spread a little joy," The man said, reaching out to meet the Ergrasar's handshake. The newcomer's massive hand seemed to envelop the robed man's. In fact, the Ergrasar's stomach was level with the man's head. "Did you manage to get it?"

"Of course," The Ergrasar said, presenting a strange trinket suspended from a strand of twine.

"Thank you, Rolas," The man said, graciously taking the bauble. and depositing it somewhere in the confines of his robes.

"It is the least I could do, a life-debt..."

"-Is something which you do not owe, to me at least."

"I will repay it one day," The giant-like figure said, determination filling every valley of his voice.

"Nonsense; you living your life is all the repayment I require. I fear I mustn't tarry any longer. If your rumor is right, it is my duty to seek resolution."

The towering Rolas bowed his head, "May safe travels guide you North."

"Light guard you," The hooded figure said, his robes beginning to shift and stir as if they possessed a will of their own. The fabric rose of his form, unfurling and changing from woven cloth to feathered wings. Falling snowflakes seemed to slow, their descent shifted by a new breeze as the wings extended to their full span.

Faces brightened in awe as the wings bore the stranger aloft and carried him far overhead and out of sight.

Dozens of leagues later, trees had given way to a frozen tundra inhospitable to all but a few hardy kinds of life. Slonnas hung low in the sky as the day neared it's end. Zadkiel felt a pang of homesickness seeing the mass of light slip lower over the horizon, but... he still felt this was where he belonged. Where he was needed. A sudden rattling sound pulled Zadkiel from his stupor and he tilted himself back to slow his flight into a hover. The Astra pulled the trinket from a pocket in his armor and held it up to the dimming light. It was a Thaumatic symbol he didn't recognize the meaning of carved from pine. Curious, Zadkiel summoned some Ether to his hand, and waved it across the his view of the bleak surroundings.

Nothing. He could sense no maledictions or aetherial corruptions, yet this simple wooden symbol was humming violently in the air. The irises of Zadkiel's eyes glowed with golden light, enhancing his vision greater than any looking glass made by mortal hands. It was only then that he noticed a small structure made from heavy stones partially buried by swirling snow in the distance. "Is that what you are trying to show me?"

Another wing beat propelled him forward and downward as the Astra drew closer to the mysterious structure. Landing with barley a sound, Zadkiel's wings drew themselves in, wrapping around him and returning to their cloth form. Still, no evil could be detected within. If there was any here at all, great lengths had been taken to mask it from him. The building was low to the ground, likely the entrance to some structure underground, but its design certainly wasn't elven. They were the closest settlement, making it even more of a mystery.

Deciding he would rather face having to make apologies than risk letting evil go unchecked, he pushed on the door. The heaven wooden door didn't budge in the slightest. Zadkiel pushed harder, using his unearthly strength, and still the slab of wood held. There was little doubt left in the Astra's mind that powerful warding magic was at play. Something wanted to keep him out, badly. Not dissuaded, Zadkiel summoned an orb of Ether around his balled fist and drove it into the center of the door. With a mighty creaking and snapping of splinters, the door flew inward as part of the stone frame was cracked by the force of the Light.

Zadkiel inspected the door as he stepped inside. Burnt lines had be traced into the wood, the remnants of the invisible warding runes that had flared with power trying to defend against the force of his power. It wasn't demonic, that was for certain. Could it be Desran? Unlikely. It appeared it was made my a mortal mage. Still, Zadkiel wasn't certain of that. Drawing his blade and charging it with Ether to give off a soft glow, Zadkiel ventured deeper and lower into the dungeon.

No resistance met him as he spiraled down further into the bowels of Yigros. Furniture was sparse and seemingly abandoned. If this place was still occupied, it wasn't in the upper levels. After several tense minutes, a foul arcane smell struck his senses. Aether was here, and it some great quantity. Zadkiel steeled himself, taking greater caution with the dark substance's presence. Eventually, the steps ended, and the tunnel stretched out straight down a hallway, ending in a chamber glowing with malicious magics. Silently, Zadkiel crept down the hallway, removing any light from his weapon and using the latent magic in his robe to rob his footfalls of any noise.

As he got closer, Zadkiel made out a room full of mortal shapes arranged before a black altar. For orbs of shifting red and black Aether hovered on pillars around the central chantry. Each had a thin tendril snaking it's way to a glowing rift that crackled over the obsidian surface of the altar. Closing his eyes for a moment, Zadkiel reached out with his mind, hearing faintly the prayers to some dark being emanating from the mortals. That was all he needed.

Rushing forward on silent steps, Zadkiel ran his sword through the back of the closest worshiper. The man let out a panicked gurgle, alerting his compatriots. Before they could even register the intruder, Zadkiel surged Ether through his body and along the length of his sword. The Light burned through the man's body, turning him to ash in the blink of an eye, his soul claimed to Moriai. Unnatural speed and agility carried Zadkiel to the next mortal before he could draw a weapon or prepare a spell. The elf was cleft in half with a glowing slash from Zadkiel's sword. As the corpse began turning to ash, the apparent leader of what the Astra assumed to be a cult praising a Desran let loose a string of ancient Irran as the air hissed with magic.

The air cooled dramatically as a flame sprouted above the cultist's hand. On reflex, Zadkiel raised his own hand. A stream of light poured forth, forming a flowing barrier of golden luminescence. A torrent of flame shot forth and harmlessly crashed against Zadkiel's ward as the heat was sucked from the room. All the while, the white-robed Astra charged forward. Once the stream of arcane flame died down, Zadkiel dropped the barrier and swung his blade at the next cultist.

This one manged to draw a sword of his own. Though, when his blade met Zadkiel's, the impact shook his whole body like he was fighting a champion Ergrasar. Zadkiel pulled back, only to swing again more strength, charging extra Ether to his blade. The man attempted another parry, but the strength of Zadkiel easily cut through steel and flesh alike.

Another voice joined the chaos of the fray as iron chains propelled by magic flew towards Zadkiel who's eyes widened in fear. Ether would be of no help to him against the metal. He tried to evade instead. His sword batted one of the chains away, but two managed to wrap around his leg and arm.

Zadkiel cried out in plain as the metal sizzled and smoked against his person, searing his skin even through his armor. With a great gust of wind, Zadkiel unfurled his wings. A blinding flash filled the chamber as light erupted from the wings. The mage controlling the chains lost his focus as the world went white. The chains fell lifeless to the floor, freeing Zadkiel to move freely again. He let loose a pure blast of golden light that tore through the unarmored mage that attacked him, reducing him to a smoldering pile of ash. There were only two cultists left, including the leader who frantically knelt before the altar.

Before Zadkiel could end him, the last cultist reached for one of the orbs of Aether.

"No!" Zadkiel yelled, but it was to no effect. The amorphous malice reached back, sliding down the Orc's arm. Spines and claws sprouted where the Aether touched, consuming the orc's flesh as his mind fell into madness. With a great beat of his wings, Zadkiel flew forward and plunged his sword into the chest of the Orc. The newly corrupted daemon howled in pain, but resisted the power of The Light. Zadkiel channeled more power into the sword, but the beast wasn't dying.

"Damn you-

"Elircosaumes su, imnos ommenkes sphoroses,
imnos sausaunocau phisussaus, imnos oncersoi onfurnaulos aukzursauroo,
imnos cinjrujausoi us sucsau koaulilocau.

"Erji, krauci maulukocsu.
Ecclusoaum seaum sucero solo faucoaus lolursausu surzoru,
su rijaumes, aueko nis!"

With the banishing complete, a column of light erupted at the feat of the foul horror, driving the aether from its body and sending them both to Sheol.

All the while, the leader had been chanting in some language not known to Yigros or the Astra. Zadkiel hoped he wasn't near completion, and spun around to bring his sword down on the human's neck. Just before the strike could connect, a spike of harden Aeither curved down from above, catching Zadkiel in the center of his chest plate. The Astra flew black, tumbling along the ground as he relaxed his wings into cloth yet again.

"You will perish, Astra!"

The rift closed, but the remaining three globules of Aether amassed into one boiling shape. Dark strands of energy drifted together to form a vague humanoid shape brimming with malice. Dark blasts of energy shot forward. Zadkiel tried to jump out of the way, but one speared him through his left shoulder. He could feel the dark substance beginning to worm it's way through his body. In a panic, he charged himself with Ether, purifying and healing the wound.

He hadn't faced this foe before, but there was a terrible suspicion forming in the soldier's mind. This had to be ended now!

Another spear of Aether tore a gash in Zadkiel's upper thigh, but he charged forward, unleashing all the Ether stored within him with a single word: "Smite!"

The explosion that tore forth turned the world dark for the heavenly warrior as the hearth heaved, destroying everything in the tower all the way to the surface, unleashing a blast of light and dark that all in Yigros sensitive to magic could feel wash over them in a cold sweat.

Miles from the epicenter, a small object, smoldering with Ether and Aether crashed to the earth half a mile from an Aarkin outpost...
I'm writing a web serial, come check it out! Aka updates every Sunday at 10:00 am EST

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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Futrellia » Thu Jul 18, 2019 5:40 pm

The Ruin, Northernmost Aarkin Outpost

The howls of the frigid winds resonated through Kyler's mind as he laid on his bed of straw and wool, staring up at complete and utter darkness. Even wrapped in his wool and cotton blanket, the winds whistling through the loose stones and brick of The Ruin chilled him to the bone. Even with the warmest of hearths, the strongest of flames, you never escaped the chill in this tundra. Looking back on his time in training to be an Inquisitor, if he had known then that he'd be posted to the farthest flung waystation the Aarkin possessed, in such a cold and unforgiving environment, he'd have half a mind to pack his things and return to the glowing warm sunlight of his village, content with plowing fields, skinning potatoes and entertaining the children as the new puppetmaster of the square. Kyler let out his disappointments with a sigh before sitting up and getting out of his bed. He'd opened his door to reveal the darkened hallway of the initiates quarters, grasping his sword in it's sheath and moved to the makeshift chapel that once served as the main pantry for whoever lived in this gutted and crumbling castle hundreds of years ago. He drew his sword and knelt before the Julhind, placing the tip of his sword down into the rotting wood boards. The gold and steel of his blade glimmered in the candlelight behind the Julhind, a large collection of different candles made from the native resources of the area. They filled his nostrils with the scent of poplar and pine, not as pleasant as the sweet smelling candles of the Tower, but much better than the smell of old and wood rot. Kyler closed his eyes and planted his forehead upon the crossbar of his sword and recited the chant given to him by the warrior-priests of the Aarkin Tower.

("Huaur mu, Lojhslronjur. Hojh Konj if shu Huauzuns, huaur mw wirks aunk ssuul mw rusilzu. Me'Rhikon, I cimu si wie wosh wuaurunuk ssrunjsh. I cimu si wie wosh au kielsonj huaurs. I cimu si wie....whun shu nojhs os kaurruss. Lojhslronjur, jeoku mw haunk aunk ruuph mu sreu. Hojh Jekju, cluaur mw monk aunk foll os wosh wier Lojhs. Konj if shu Huauzuns, jrausph mw wuaur huaurs aunk jozu mu cierauju, zaulir, ssrunjsh. Rumonk mu if mw kesous, Me'Rhikon aunk russiru shu woskim if shu Aaurron si shos liss surzauns...")

(Translation: "Hear me, Lightbringer. High King of the Heavens, hear my words and steel my resolve. Mu'Rhodin, I come to you with weakened strength. I come to you with a doubting heart. I come to you....when the night is darkest. Lightbringer, guide my hand and keep me true. High Judge, clear my mind and fill it with your Light. King of the Heavens, grasp my weak heart and give me courage, valor, strength. Remind me of my duties, Mu'Rhodin and restore the wisdom of the Aarkin to this lost servant...")

Kyler remained deathly still as he opened his eyes, his forehead still remaining against the cold steel. He shook his head ever so gently. "What will you do with your servant, Lightbringer? You trained me for what? For what? To waste away in this..." His breathing shuddered as a cold sweat registered throughout his body. He felt ill, a sudden fever that bit him to his soul. He wiped his forehead as he felt dizzy and as fast as the feeling came, it went. The hairs on his neck stood straight as he heard indistinct yelling from outside and turned his neck to face the chapel door. He jumped up, sheathed his blade and ran out of the chapel, bumping into fellow initiate Giraut Galladhar, a boy the same age as he, who chose the Discir, the god who heals. Giraut devoted his training to the balms, staves, and potions of healing. While Kyler picked up the sword, Giraut picked up the mortar and pestle. While Kyler formed barriers of pure ether to defend himself against magic attacks and arrows, Giraut used ether to heal wounds. While all Inquisitors are taught some level of healing magics, Giraut is capable of healing any wounds, magic or otherwise. Kyler was surprised to see the healer wielding a dagger, but in such a remote location, all they had was each other and everyone needed to fight if the outpost came under attack. The two initiates ran outside, busting through the worn out heavy wood doors that led into the main hearth. The door revealed the outpost commander and the two veteran warriors of the outpost, standing over the unconscious body of an Astra. Kyler's eyes went wide with surprise and shock while Giraut rushed to the commander, knowing his place as outpost healer and awaiting orders as all good Aarkin would do.

"The Intercessor is injured, Initiate. Do what we taught you." Said the old commander calmly while gesturing to go to the Astra. Meanwhile, there Kyler stood, standing in awe of seeing the Intercessor he heard much about in the Aarkin texts. "Boy! Bring a cot and place it by the fire!" Ordered the commander in his intimidating and harsh tone. Kyler nodded and rushed off for the supply closet, where they put unused supplies and equipment brought with them on arrival a decade ago. Kyler dragged out an old wood and leather cot padded with thick woolskin. He ran back to the large dining room where the outpost warriors brought in the Astra, placing the cot near the hearth. The Commander nodded in Kyler's direction, acknowledging Kyler's accomplished task. "What's your verdict, Giraut?" said the commander as he examined the injured Astra and the Aarkin healer standing over him, his palms glowing a soft yellow. "Aside from his torn and tattered armor and robes, he has cuts, scrapes, burns, but what concerns me is the Aether that's scorned his deeper wounds. I can heal it but it will take time. Whatever did this was....immensely powerful." Replied Giraut.

"Commander Ferant, for something to have done this kind of damage to the Intercessor, it's..." Inquisitor Hemot was hushed as Ferant motioned for him to go outside.

"Prepare the horses, Inquisitor. Berok, find as many torches, arrows and wool blankets you can find. We depart soon." The two inquisitors nodded their usual respective replies to their commander's orders. Kyler, stepping out of place as an initiate as was the usual, approached Commander Ferant.

"Commander, what's going on? What happened to the Intercessor?"

"There was a blast a few miles south of here. Whatever it was threw the Intercessor and another object in opposite directions. We will be departing to the site of the explosion to investigate what could have done such a thing. You are to guard the Astra and Giraut while we are gone. While you are an initiate, you are still an Inquisitor and our laws dictate that as the only combat-capable Inquisitor, you are the commander of this post until I return. Now go, watch over our Intercessor." the Commander said as he turned to walk out of the door.

"Commander!" Said Kyler. Jeor Ferant turned around to see Kyler. Kyler put his fist upon his heart and nodded. "Light guard you." Ferant chose the same gesture. "Light keep you....Commander." Jeor Ferant said with a smirk, most entertained at the thought of an initiate commanding an outpost. Kyler turned back to Giraut and watched the healing ether course through the Astra's wounds.

"Will he be alright, Giraut?"

"While I am just an initiate, I can only say that I am very, very, pleased that I took those extra classes with Senior Healer Artraeus. Yes, as long as I keep this up, the wounds and the Aether-scorn will fade, but judging by the looks of the Aether infection...I will be here awhile." Kyler nodded and took a seat by the closest table to the hearth, his sword unsheathed and laid upon his bended knees, scraping the sharpened edges with his thumb. Kyler felt his eyes become heavy and resolved to rest them for a moment. He wouldn't sleep, only calm his nerves and compose himself.


Kyler jumped nearly out of his chair as he realized he had fallen asleep, the sword clattered to the ground, causing a loud ruckus that nearly departed Giraut's soul from his body.

"By Light, man!" Yelled Giraut as the healing powers on his palms flickered but continued forth as he regained his focus.

"Sorry, Giraut." Said Kyler as he rubbed his eyes and shook his head." Kyler felt ashamed about him falling asleep. Placed in charge of keeping the Astra and his friend safe and he falls asleep.

"How long...was I-"
"Asleep? About an hour. The minor cuts, burns and gashes are gone and I've managed to dissolve the Aether within his body. Once I close the rest of the wounds, it will be a while before he wakes up, then again, I've never healed an Astra before, so this is....all new territory for me. Kyler picked up the blade from the floor and yet again placed the tip onto the stone slabs of the dining hall flooring. He recited the same chant he told in the chapel, but as he did, he heard another voice in the room repeat his exact words in a hushed manner. Kyler looked up to see the Astra's mouth moving, repeating the chant, his eyes still closed. Giraut looked to Kyler with a confusion about him. Kyler simply looked back down and continued with his chant.
Last edited by Futrellia on Thu Jul 18, 2019 5:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Kaziimar » Thu Jul 18, 2019 10:34 pm

Marie Väikhen had been in the Shimmering Tower’s library for the better part of the day, hair pulled away from her eyes as she studied another spell tome that would be soon added to the growing stacks on either side of her. She was trying to find this new fire spell that her colleague had brought back, but being the little shit he was he refused to tell her exactly which spell tome it was that he had found and recovered. Oh well, she was determined. She’d find what she was looking for eventually, no matter how long it took. “I would use a locator spell, but since I don’t know what the damn book looks like...eeeek!” Cut off in her ravings by darkness suddenly obscuring her vision, she jolted until she reached up against the source and slumped back in her chair when she felt leather. “Guess who?”
“Sy, are you serious man? What am I kidding, of course you are.” Now instead of scared, her voice was an odd mix of amused and annoyed.

A deep, rich laugh echoed softly in her ears as she was suddenly able to see again and turned around to see her husband straightening his glasses with one of his purple-gloved hands, leaning against one of the bookshelves. “Hey Mari, you miss me?” The wizard asked with that customary smirk of his. “Only always, love.” Marie rolled her eyes and smiled at him, leaning up when he bent down to kiss her. “What are you even doing here, Sy? Shouldn’t you be with the Merchant’s Guild right now or are you over here trying to shirk work as usual?”
“What? My lady, you wound me.” Silas places a hand dramatically to his heart and Marie laughed, reaching out to playfully shove him.”I can’t just come to visit my beautiful wife?”
“Of course you can, in fact I welcome it. But you know if your boss gets on your ass again...and you know I am not beautiful.”
“Let me worry about that, my darling. Anyway...” Suddenly he shivered, and Marie immediately went to him with worry on her face. “Silas?” She reached out and touched his shoulder, only to feel cold suddenly and violently wash over her before leaving as quickly as it came. “ feel that, Sy?”
“Yeah...what in Mu’Rhodin’s name was that?”
“Don’t know, but whatever it was it certainly wasn’t good.”

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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Okayanos » Fri Jul 19, 2019 12:59 am

運命の手 (Hand of Fate)

The Nest, Mandrel Mountain Range, West of the Orrish

The Nest stood as a stark contrast to the empty mountain terrain that surrounded it on all sides. The dark, nearly monolithic structure was a massive tower with a sloped roof, surrounded by shorter, identical towers with the whole lot of them ringed by a high wall. In front of the tallest tower, a central courtyard had become the site of a demonstration. A hundred of the monastery's most promising students lined in formation. A hundred bodies moving in synchronization, reciting every form that had been ingrained in their memory through unforgiving training. At the head of the assembly, at the top of the stairs leading to the main tower's entrance, stood their master- a woman, short in stature, with a thin frame that was almost exaggerated by cloak of black feathers draped over her shoulders. Her physique suggested elvish descent, but the beaked mask and round straw hat on her head left it impossible to know for sure. The students, in unison, came to the last move in their form. In unison, they all let out a kiai shout that could have sent chills down the spine of the uninitiated. The masked woman, the master, was unshaken. Her voice projected out from behind her mask, ordering her students to their next form. She remained at the top of the stairs, watching for some time, before handing the duties off to another of the masters, a tall Orc with a similar feather cloak and a beaked mask, but without the hat, showing off extremely short hair, nearly shaved bald.

"Lady Raven!" A voice calling for her claimed the attention of the short woman. The monk who called for her was a halfling, as small as one would expect of his race. The halfling monk's most notable features were his tight-trimmed beard, and his hair, which was mostly shaved except for a mohawk that flopped to one side. His clothing was simple, black cloth wrapped around himself as a gi.
"Master Eldor." Raven replied, clasping her hands and offering a brief bow to the halfling. Eldor returned the gesture, his bow shallower simply because of his diminutive height. Raven and Eldor were both far from imposing physically- but the Crows knew better than to doubt because of that. Both had passed the Striking Test with flying colors, cracking the trunks of Mandrel Frostwood trees with only their bare limbs. Eldor was still the only monk to have done it perfectly on his first attempt. "News from the north?"
"Aye." Eldor replied. "The Lords of Ferrow are heading toward the Shimmering Tower." The halfling monk paused for a moment, before continuing. "The balance of good and evil has changed. I think we need to start sending agents out toward the other guilds. This is a disruption of fate, and-"
"Enough. We'll send-" A hush fell over the courtyard, and Lady Raven was interrupted.

A great many heads turned to face the newcomer, a nondescript figure in a simple gray robe. The monks, students, masters, and agents alike all prepared, silent and observant as a murder of crows should be. The gray hood over the mysterious person's head concealed their features in an almost supernatural shadow- but through the darkness, a dim blue light would occasionally reveal itself. A glow in the darkness, fading but never dying. This was no simple mortal. The monks, previously poised and ready to strike the intruder down, dropped to their knees, bowing their heads in reverence. It was like a wave sweeping through the crowd as student, master, and agent alike fell to the ground. The gray robed wanderer moved through the crowd, but he did not walk. The wanderer just seemed to appear, stepping out of the blind spots where none of the monks were looking. Eventually, his presence manifested itself beside Lady Raven. Finding herself frozen beside a god, Raven hastily bent at the waist, bowing in a deep respect. Not as deep as what would be afforded to Aleph or Gnos, but enough. "I- we have no offerings, but our faith has never once faltered." Glancing up under her mask, she still only saw shadow beneath the wanderer's hood. "We serve as we are fated."

"Fate presides over the future, but how does fate protect from the past? Such is the question before you in the north. Time prompts timeless issues, as it always has and will." The voice came to every monk, as though spoken directly into their ears. With each blink of Raven's eyes, the wanderer appeared further from the courtyard, further from the monastery, and then he was gone, leaving only the silence he had created to be broken by the whoosh of mountain wind. Raven waited, to see if the wanderer would return. When he did not, she turned once more to Master Eldor.

"We'll send Lovelock. This mission is our priority now, if gods are speaking of it." She sighed. "I'll pray that the Lords of Ferrow decide to be useful for a change."
Last edited by Okayanos on Tue Jul 23, 2019 12:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Futrellia » Sun Jul 21, 2019 5:01 pm

***Co-Write with Cy***

The Ruin, Northernmost Aarkin Outpost

Kyler paced around the broken and rotted tables that once hosted festivities and revelries within it's halls. The sun filled the cracks and crevices of the ancient, crumbling fortress, reminding him of how long the veterans had been gone. Three days. It had been three days since the Astra was recovered and he'd gotten little sleep since. Giraut had finished the healing process a day before and allowed himself to slip into a heavy sleep. Though Giraut was just as responsible for the safety and security of this outpost and the Intercessor, Kyler allowed the healer to sleep, after all, without him the Astra most certainly would have succumbed to his wounds. He believed the healer deserved some well needed rest.

With his fighting hand resting upon the pommel of his sword, he continued to glance over at the Intercessor, back towards the door and to the other hallways that lead to the basements and the initiates quarters, his ears focused and waiting for the slightest sound that might indicate those who may have injured the Astra could be returning to finish the job. Though not the most effective swordsman, he was trained by the best battlemasters of the Tower, and besting an Inquisitor, even if it is just an Initiate, is no small task. He rubbed his eyes with his other hand and shook his head violently to keep himself awake. He began to worry about his commander and the other Inquisitors. The journey didn't seem to take as long as three days to arrive and investigate. If something had attacked and ended the veteran Inquisitors at the explosion site, Kyler had a strong belief that they would come here so he pushed to keep himself awake, kept his grip upon his sword and watched over the Intercessor.

From the dark and endless murkiness of the seemingly endless dream, Zadkiel's conscious came rushing back. His eyes opened with a start, irises burning with golden energy. The astra rolled off the cot and stood shakily on his feet. "Whuru aum I?" He shouted in Julhin at Kyler, forming a menacing orb of Ether around his outstretched fist.

Zadkiel managed to hold it for only a split second before the light flickered and his legs gave out. Falling back while clumsily trying to catch himself on the edge of the table, the astra only managed to sweep some clutter on top of himself as he ended up half sprawled in an old chair. Zadkiel winced, gripping his side. Giraut was the first to react to the Astra's movements, beating Kyler's reactions and being there to catch him as he fell. "It's alright, it's alright! We're Aarkin!" Said the healer initiate. Kyler, watching Giraut move to assist the Astra, slid the sword back into it's sheath, his adrenaline beginning to slow after witnessing an angry Astra. He didn't know which was more frightening for him, the fact that the Astra shined forth it's heavenly powers or for the fact that he, an Aarkin Inquisitor, drew his sword onto the Intercessor. He quickly walked to the side of the injured Astra.

"Caulm, Insurcussir. Mw naumu os Kwlur aunk hu os Goraues. Wu auru Inneososirs frim shu Orkur if shu Aaurron. Lus's lauw wie laucr kiwn, sor."

(Calm, Intercessor. My name is Kyler and he is Giraut. We are Inquisitors from the Order of the Aarkin. Let's lay you back down, sir.)

He nodded to Giraut and together they helped pick the Astra up and sit him down onto the cot.

"No, I need food, whatever you can spare."

Zadkiel's eyes scanned his surroundings, seeming wary of the strangers. His Ether was all but gone...making him all but mortal.

"Giraut, go to the pantry, bring whatever we have. All of it." Kyler ordered the initiate, whom nodded in response and left the room for the small pantry stocked with food that had been either sourced from the tower or bought from the few local villages around the area. He witnessed the Astra's power flickering and disappearing and seemed curious. He never met an Astra before but read the chronicles and stories of them. Flickering power was never mentioned and it worried him. Perhaps all he needed was food, though the stories never mentioned Astra eating mortal food.

"Intercessor, what happened to you?" Kyler asked.

"Zadkiel. My name is Zadkiel," The astra replied, beginning scarf down any bread he could find, largely leaving the preserved meats alone. "I don't know what happened. Where am I?"

As soon as Giraut returned with the basket of salted pork, fish, bread and fruits, Zadkiel targeted the bread first, surprising Kyler. He now knew that Astra have impeccable appetites and weren't afraid to get a bit messy, examining the bread crumbs laying upon his tattered robes. Kyler looked over to Giraut after the Astra's questions, seemingly just as confused as Zadkiel was.

"Your at The Ruin, northernmost Aarkin outpost. My commander and the veterans witnessed the explosion that slung you close to our outpost. When they recovered you and brought you back, they set out once more to investigate the site of the explosion and left Giraut to heal you and me to defend you."

"That's...more than twenty leagues from Cah Elunore," he said, staring off into space. "How long have they been gone?"

Whatever that thing had was more powerful than any demon Zadkiel had fought before. He had put everything he could spare into that blast, but it hadn't been destroyed. He was certain of that. Coming back to reality a bit, he glanced down and saw his armor had been striped away, leaving him in bandages and tattered robes. With minor aid from his powers, he saw his armor laying on the ground nearby, his wing cloak draped over them, damaged beyond repair.

"And where is my sword?"

"Three days ago. Commander Ferant, Sirs Hemot and Berok accompanied him."

Kyler watched as Zadkiel examined his surroundings and the state of his armor and cloak. He was taken aback by the Astra asking for his weapon, a sword. More specifically, his sword. He thought back to the moment the other Inquisitors brought Zadkiel in. He tried to remember if there was anything that stood out. He'd imagine that a sword belonging to an Astra would certainly stand out, but nothing came to his mind.

"I haven't seen any sword, Intercessor. It's possible the other Inquisitors maybe left it or didn't see it nearby."

"We need to focus on your health, Sir Zadkiel. You are very weak, too weak to draw ether. You need food and water and rest." Blurted out Giraut, pretending to know how an Astra body "recovers" from such wounds.

"I need my sword," Zadkiel said.

He unceremoniously shoved the last bit of bread into his mouth before standing again. He staggered towards the door, grabbing the ruins of his cloak and slinging it over his shoulder. "Healer, stay here in case your superiors return. Inquisitor, with me. We have to find my sword."

The two Inquisitors looked at one another as Zadkiel stumbled towards the door, visibly still wounded.

"Intercessor, Commander Ferant named me Commander of this Outpost upon his departure, I am bound to his orders and you are in no state to travel, sir. I must insist that you stay here and recover, at least one more day." Kyler was nervous. Defying the orders of an Astra, well, it wasn't something that shouted "good Inquisitor".

"I agree with Commander Kyler. You need more rest, Zadkiel." Said Giraut, siding with Kyler in their defiance of Zadkiel's orders.

"I can make healing tea, it'll allow you to regain your strength. You'll be healthy enough to walk by the end of the day." Stated the Healer.

"Your magic will be of little effect. There is some Ether stored in my sword. Your Ferant may be in mortal danger and we don't have time to waste. I'll survive; sustenance and rest are not necessary for Astra," Zadkiel said, pushing the door open to the crisp outside. He paused for a second in the sunlight, soaking it into his skin. "Slinnaus, jozu mu ssrunjsh."

translation: "Slonnas, give me strength."

Kyler glared at Giraut once more and nodded. "Giraut, remain here. Bar the doors and windows, do not open these doors for anyone but Inquisitors. Hide if you must, but stay alive until we return." Instructed Kyler. Giraut nodded reluctantly as Kyler walked to the Astra, standing silently behind him for a moment.

"If you insist, Intercessor. We may leave."

"Do you have horses? I fear my wings are too damaged to sustain me in flight." The Astra asked Kyler.

As the two walked outside of the doors, Giraut shut them close, the sound of several locks and a thick wooden beam sliding across the door reassured Kyler that Giraut would keep safe until they returned.

We have two horses left, but they aren't the fastest. The fastest are with Commander Ferant."

"They'll do."

Reaching his hand into the air, Zadkiel summoned a speck of Ether at the tip of his finger, searching for his sword. In the distance, he found a faint glimmer. "It's not far, we can make it within the hour."

Kyler walked over to his choice of horse: a gray Yigrosi Ice Horse that weighed around 800 pounds, a workhorse he named "Titan". He approached the small makeshift stable and picked up the gold and scarlet accented heavy leather saddle and slung it over the horse.

"Then let's ride, Intercessor." Said Kyler as he tightened the saddle onto the horse, the Ice Horse neighing and getting a bit rowdy in response. "Shhh, Titan. It's me, boy." He said as he stroked his bright white mane and patted his neck.

"Will you need help with your saddle, Zadkiel? I've been doing this all of my life and I don't see a reason as to why Astra would ever need horses."

"Thank you, but I'll manage. I'm nearly six centuries old; I've saddled a horse before. Sometimes the company is nice," He said with a thin smile.

Soon enough, they were off, riding through the sparse, almost non-existent trees and over the frozen terrain. After they had lost sight of the tower behind them, Zadkiel suddenly sat up straighter in the saddle. "Do you sense that? Djinn," the astra said, scanning the environment for a potential ambush. He was weakened, but Djinn were pathetic creatures on their own. But a number of them? That could pose a problem.

There was no way for him to determine their numbers, but they didn't feel like a great horde. "Be on guard."

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