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  1. - Top - End - #421
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    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Family Reunion

    Dasque brushed the radiant strands from her eyes. "I should hope first we're happy to see them. It would break my heart if Fayruz lost her beauty and has changed into something less wholesome though." Dasque jested at Faden's new form. She still had her cutting wit. "Let's speak of the dark sands on the morrow. I wish for a happy reunion and news of an ancient, formless terror will only spoil things."

    Dasque had truly changed. Whereas back in the White City, she was always practical, sometimes to a sin, this decision was far more emotionally driven. She had told Faden of her time on the ice continent, of the months travelled all alone. It had affected her deeply, even more than she had already admitted.

  2. - Top - End - #422
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    After listening to Kalandor's warning, Jongo smiled.

    "Rest, Goose. You let me handle things. I'll give 'em the old one two, and then Frellon can count to three and four. I think something comes after that, but I stopped paying attention after four, usually. It got boring."

    With that, Jongo, Frellon, Amanda, and a few others that Jongo wasn't paying attention to, walked towards the outside of town. Jongo checked his mindscape again.

    "Well. This will be interesting. They are not coming towards us. They are, in fact, here. Excuse me, I want to try something." Jongo darted forward, ahead of the group, and reached the outskirts of the town on the Olm. Stepping into the river itself, Jongo let the water flow around him, and started to grow.

    And grow.

    And grow.

    She felt himself stretch and stretch, and got to be a good twelve feet before growing became difficult. Still, a twelve foot form of a child in a white shift, standing in the river as the water swirled around her, Jongo was impressive.

    Jongo waved at what looked like a large bird flying towards them. Peering carefully, Jongo started laughing. It was not a demon bird. It was a roc. Faden had found a roc!

    ...but I still did not meet a dragon today. I did not meet a dragon today. What I did meet, you can't make me say. But I did not meet a dragon today! Still waving, Jongo grinned and giggled. What was I doing again? Oh, right!

    "FADEN! You come down here right now, mister. If you aren't corrupted by deep evils, then I want to hug you and Lakespittle. And if you are taken over and a big meanie-head, then you are in deep trouble, mister! I am SOOOOOO mad right now. People are making me act my age! That's not fair!"
    The sound of a small child - no longer small - seemed to be large and vast. Jongo had no doubt that she was heard. The emotions on Jongo's face seemed to be at war. On the one had, it was Faden and Dasque. On the other... Somebody had hurt Kalandor. Somebody would pay.

    ...but Jongo couldn't resist. What were older siblings for? "Also! The Roc that has let you ride it is impressive, but I met TWO dragons!

    So neener-neener-neener!"
    Large Jongo stuck out his tongue and waggled the fingers of one hand next to his ear.
    Last edited by Gengy; 2012-03-27 at 01:09 AM.
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    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    "What-the-Jongo?"
    Before you insult someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, you'll be a mile away, and have their shoes!

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  3. - Top - End - #423
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    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Dasque dismounted off of the Roc, wrapping the wind around herself by force of will to slow her descent.

    "Jongo! Father created you before age existed, remember? That means you do not have to worry about it!" The very air that she controlled shimmered with her own light, creating spiralling patterns of light in the air around her, dissipating as she landed in front of Jongo. She stared straight up to the twelve feet of Jongo. "Now return to a size so that I can hug you back, and then you can tell me what this prattle about corruption is."

    She looked sternly at Jongo. She did not want to get crushed by a giant, Jongo hug. A medium Jongo hug would suffice.

  4. - Top - End - #424
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    Reunion

    Faden felt the black ribbons vibrate underneath his robes with the volume of Jongo's shout. Raising his own voice through the use of illusions Tezzerin had taught him years ago, he responded. "Acting your age? Well, we can't have that."

    Bolting to where Jongo stood, Faden looked at his towering sibling. "What's this about deep evils?" He looked back at Dasque, his thoughts clear despite the lack of facial expression. We may be talking about the sands today after all.
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  5. - Top - End - #425
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    Jongo didn't shrink. She just stared down at his two siblings, squinting in uncertainty. The water of the Olm flowed at her feet, whipping in unusual whirlpools around Jongo's feet. If Faden or Dasque cared to notice, they would probably see that the whirlpools were swirling in different directions from each other.

    Jongo spoke, a little more softly then before, but still in a booming voice.

    "Someone hurt Goose. Hurt him bad. He's tired, beat up, and really unable to move. He warned me to be careful. He warned me that someone had changed, and not for the better. That's Squid coming up behind me, by the way. Oh. And your niece, Amanda-dear. She's the one with Jewely in her chest. And no, she's not mine; Butterfly adopted her. But she's a sweetie that is learning not to ask questions. And Kalandor didn't even get to say hello to her. Because he was hurt. So... here's the thing. Here's why I am not hugging you just yet, even though every part of my body screams at me to tackle you both and..."

    Jongo paused and took a good long look at his eldest brother, trying to discern what was bothering her. In a shrill voice, Jongo realized what it was, "Faden Duckie Son-of-Baz'Auran, where is your skin?!? You put your skin back on right now, mister. Oh! And did you hurt Kalandor? Because if you did, so help me, I will make you put your skin back on so that I can redden your backside!"
    Last edited by Gengy; 2012-03-27 at 02:01 AM.
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    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    "What-the-Jongo?"
    Before you insult someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, you'll be a mile away, and have their shoes!

    Getting my Master's Degree for games (yay!). Very busy (boo!).
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  6. - Top - End - #426
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    "Did I hurt Kalandor? Certainly not. I haven't even seen Kalandor since the White City was attacked. Will he be alright?" Faden ignores Jongo's skin-related demands for the moment.
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  7. - Top - End - #427
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    "Flower is looking after him. I think he'll be all right. I... I just don't know. He says... he says...

    ...that you did it to him."
    Jongo looked down at Faden, and again appeared conflicted.

    "I trust both of you. If you say you didn't do it, then you didn't do it. But if Goose says you did it, then he at least thinks you did it. So something is very very wrong here. You're the smart one, Duck. I saw your pretty light fairy thing. It was amazing.

    But if someone has been playing around with black sands and hurting people... And if that someone has people tricked into thinking they are you... This is NOT a fun prank.

    And on top of all of this, one of us has, for sure turned to blood and war, and not in a way that makes me comfortable. Ooooooo... This is making my head spin. Normally, I'd enjoy this kind of confusion! I don't have the head for figuring this out."


    Jongo looked very frustrated. The Band of Chaos rang out a inharmonious note, and Jongo tried to smile, "No, I'm telling you, there isn't enough pie in the world for that. Unless we found Llassar, of course. Oh! And this is the Band of Chaos."

    Jongo pointed up at the small circular crown on his head. Grinning, all be it slowly, Jongo continued, "It doesn't know what to think of the two of you yet. And until we get things sorted out, I think it best if you stayed here. Don't cross the river. If you must cross, make sure it's with Squid or me."

    Plopping down in the Olm to sit as a giant Jongo in the middle of the river, the Everchanging was more eye level with her two siblings.

    Changing topics as only he can, Jongo continued conversationally, "So. Have you run into anyone else? Carolinus is being a biiiiiig grassblade, and didn't want to come south with us."
    Last edited by Gengy; 2012-03-27 at 06:04 AM.
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    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    "What-the-Jongo?"
    Before you insult someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, you'll be a mile away, and have their shoes!

    Getting my Master's Degree for games (yay!). Very busy (boo!).
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  8. - Top - End - #428
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    Stripped Gears

    "Now hold on, Jongo, and back up a bit. Kalandor is wrong, and if I'm going to prove it then I need to know what he said. Exactly. Standing here by the river is fine, if that's what it takes to show that I am not..." he hesitates, "...a meanie-head, but I'd rather be proactive about this. As you've said, something is very odd here. Carolinus can wait."
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  9. - Top - End - #429
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    Frellon had stood behind Jongo durring the exchange, his hand on his sword hilt, eying Dasque.

    She was radiance incarnate, and held that spear like it was a toy.

    Surely she had changed since the white city, if her appearance was any indication.

    12-foot Jongo was having a longwinded discussion with Faden, which Frellon was only half-listening to. It seemed obvious to Frellon that neither Faden or Dasque were mindless zombies, which meant their possessor was sentient and skilled, or they were willing in their actions.

    He might yet get to test Dasques skill with that spear, but it was looking like it might not be on the friendlier terms he would have liked.

    With difficulty, he refocused his attention on Faden's defense; Honor demanded he hear out the other side of the story before laying down any kind of retribution.

    "Now hold on, Jongo, and back up a bit. Kalandor is wrong, and if I'm going to prove it then I need to know what he said. Exactly. Standing here by the river is fine, if that's what it takes to show that I am not..." he hesitates, "...a meanie-head, but I'd rather be proactive about this. As you've said, something is very odd here. Carolinus can wait."

    Frellon was not entirely certain how he did what he did next. He extended his hand, palm up, and a small, golden, heat-less flame erupted from it. It burned brightly for a moment, before it started to emit Kalandor's voice, pitch perfect, capturing every hesitation, slur and stutter as if his struggling form was before them now.

    "He came upon a monstrous bird, its wings a thunderstorm. I did not recognize him at first, but in my heart, I think I already knew it to be Faden...he has changed. His body has been given over to power, to flame, with only dead black funeral wrappings to mark where flesh once stood. He attacked me on sight - I do not even think he recognized me at first - screaming that I would not take his power from him. I tried to reason with him..."

    "He did not relent. He claimed that he and he alone had the power to retake the White City, that his will would guide us all to a perfect tomorrow. Then, he summoned Dasque."

    "She is radiant now, but he has ensorcelled her. The damnable sand is but the least of his powers, it seems. She is bound to him, and when I protested his madness she attacked. What could I do, but run?"


    The fire vanished, seemingly reabsorbed beneath the skin of Frellon's hand. His eyes flashed as he looked first at Faden, then at Dasque.

    "My youngest brother has been injured deeply. My second-Eldest brother is blamed. What am I to think? Whom do I trust?" His grip on the hilt of his sword tightens, the knucles showing white as he is seemingly restraining himself.
    Last edited by AntiMatter101; 2012-03-28 at 11:01 PM.
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  10. - Top - End - #430
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    "Thank you, Squid." Jongo smiled, ideas forming in his head. She didn't know Frellon could mimic things like that, but it was an interesting thing. "Look, Duckie. I don't... I don't know what's going on here. I do know that if it were up to me, and I could find all of them, I'd get Porcupine to come down and throw a big party, because we are all alive - and then Rose could listen to you speak, and listen to Goose, and she'd know which of you was lying. She was always good at that. She might not tell the rest of us who it was, but she'd know."

    "Or even Khalen-Fish might be able to help here. But he'd never accept an invitation from me, and even more so now, I bet. Do you know, when I close my eyes, I can see most of you? Duck, you're beautiful. You look... you look like... magic. If magic had just one form, if would look like you. And Lakespittle, I can barely see anything near you; you shine like a star walking upon land. Whatever you did... it would make Father so proud." Jongo offered a smiled smile to his sister, knowing that, for whatever reason, she and Father did not get along. But this... If Father were watching and able to see what Jongo could see... Jongo closed his eyes, if only for a second or two.

    Haramhold felt Solid. Frellon was like a Lion's Roar, if that sound could somehow have a color. Dasque... was just too bright to gaze upon in the mindscape for too long. She was light. No bits of darkness could touch her.

    Faden. Now that Jongo could see him up close - could really get a look at the spark of the divine coursing in him - Faden looked like a controlled stream of interconnecting lines, each a different hue and shade, but in a pattern that could only be intentional. Even if that reason could not be fathomed. It was like looking at pure willpower, among the strongest kind.

    Jongo did not know how either of these two siblings could ever be turned to evil. Since she was looking, Jongo turned his mind back and looked at Kalandor. Like before, it was the feeling of unrest; the desire to always move, always be going somewhere. It felt small, weak, as though it had been beaten down by something, and was much farther away then it should be.

    It made Jongo angry again, so with an effort, she opened her eyes and started talking as though continuing the conversation with out pause, "Khalen-Fish, on the other hand? He's one great void. One swirling mess of pure dark bleak something. If I hadn't been watching for all of you, and seen the spark ignite, I never would have seen him - if what I am seeing is him, after all, which, after finally meeting all of you again, I like to think that I know what I'm talking about."

    The Band of Chaos tooted a low note of discourse, and Jongo giggled, "True, it's fun to be wrong, sometimes! So. I guess I could try sending a message to the Fish. It would be neat seeing him again, and finding out what happened to him. He'd have a better head for this, too. What do you guys think? Or... oh! Fadenfadenfadenfadenfadenfadenfaden! Avyra (is scary) but if she's alive, she'd be great for this. She always could settle things between us. Have you or Lakespittle heard from her? Is she close? Could we get her, instead of Khalen? Or both of them, maybe?"
    Last edited by Gengy; 2012-03-27 at 01:12 PM.
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    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    "What-the-Jongo?"
    Before you insult someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, you'll be a mile away, and have their shoes!

    Getting my Master's Degree for games (yay!). Very busy (boo!).
    ~avatar by myself

  11. - Top - End - #431
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    Darkness Upon the Olm

    As the assembled gods confronted each other by the river, Kalandor's eyes flickered open. Deep within his mental prison, he heard the impatient chittering of the puppeteer's legs, the wet grind of its unseen fangs.

    "It would seem your siblings are unwilling to take the bait, morsel. I suppose it falls to me to escalate the situation."

    With a groan, Kalandor's body pushed itself from it's prone position, standing on shaky legs. As it did so, Kalandor's hand caught on a jagged shard of rock, drawing a long thin line of blood to his palm seemingly by chance. Leaving a bloody hand print in the dust, the wound began to dribble a spotty trail of blood as Kalandor's body continued forward. Shrugging off Fayruz's protestations, it staggered resolutely onwards, forcing the goddess and her retinue to follow.

    Reaching the edge of the river, Kalandor's body stiffened as his eyes sighted Faden, standing tall and proud even before Jongo's watery apparition. As his body waded into the river itself, Kalandor's blood left behind little clouds of gold, a path to where his body came to a halt before Faden. Examining him for a moment, Kalandor's visage became hesitant.

    "Were you truly not the one who attacked me, brother? Have I been deceived?"
    Last edited by TheDarkDM; 2012-03-27 at 02:54 PM.

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  12. - Top - End - #432
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    Darkness at the Olm

    "It does come down to trust, doesn't it? Kalandor and I have delivered opposing stories. They cannot both be true, so one of us must be either wrong or lying." Faden surreptitiously activated Ego and Id, taking the opportunity to gaze at Kalandor, and saw... nothing out of the ordinary. True, the presence of Jongo, Frellon, and Dasque was a riot of obscuring color and connections to his eyes, but there was nothing like the dark, clear line that had connected the black sand pools to the south. Hrm. So much for *that* theory.

    Letting the artifacts on his hands fall dormant again, he felt himself relax slightly. Discovering that Kalandor was possessed would indeed have made for a cleaner ending to the confrontation, but the process of removing it would be harrowing and Faden had no desire to put his younger brother through still more abuse. "However, the aid of more of our siblings is not necessary. Kalandor has indeed been deceived, and I can prove it."

    He snapped his fingers and Kalandor's initial statement appeared in the air, in clean flowing handwriting. "Let's cut to the heart of the matter, and assume for a moment that Kalandor told you the truth. He claims that I have been driven mad by power and death and that I attacked him on sight, unwilling to listen to reason or compromise. He states that I have either fallen in league with or else directly control the black sand that has begun to menace the area, and that I have somehow magically enslaved Dasque. And that I have a pet monster bird. Let's take them in reverse order." He turns to the Roc. "Pyra? Would you describe yourself as monstrous?"

    "I'd describe myself as bored. I hope you're not planning to talk until I die of old age. We have a deal, remember?"

    "I'll take that as a no. Jongo here can tell you what Pyra is - she's a Roc, a marvelous creature of Jongo's design." Faden began actively pacing, seeming almost to enjoy having a captive audience, despite the gravity of the situation. Perhaps I'm still something of a showoff.

    "Now, about this assertion that I can somehow enslave my siblings - including, theoretically, all of you. Since we're assuming that Kalandor is right, we'll leave the question of why I would do that for later and instead ask ourselves why I didn't just enslave him? Or all of you? True, there could be some special circumstance that allows it, but that flies in the face of me being a power-maddened and vicious assailant." Faden stops. "The idea that I control the black sand is equally silly. If I have such power that I was able to defeat Kalandor - quite easily, since he's badly hurt I don't have a mark on me - then why wouldn't I have simply engaged him with the sand when he was too far away to recognize me? Why would I not have hunted him down rather than allowing him to move all the way back to the Olm? With my magic, Pyra can outrun sound itself - I doubt an injured Kalandor could beat us here."

    Faden wags one gloved finger. "Finally, you must compare what you've seen with Kalandor's story. I did not, on appearing here, display any of the behavior that he describes. I would like to take back the White City, but I am well aware that I don't have the power to do it. It will take all of us, working together at a time in the future when we are ready."

    "And that just leaves us with identity, doesn't it? On my landing here, I ran into what was left of the First Spirit of Magic - you may remember him, Jongo, though I'm sure none of the others would, as Father banished him here before I was created. He was neither repentant nor willing to coexist peacefully with others on the Disk, and our ensuing confrontation obliterated my body, but circumstances were such that I could keep my mind, spark, spirit, and memories within these rags. It's not much to look at, I'll grant you, but all of you, after spending this much time with Jongo, should know that appearances mean little." Faden threw his arms wide and the twin points of light that shone from under his hood flared. "But the spark - that you can sense, and it hasn't changed. I am Faden: accept no substitutes."

    Resuming a more reasonable posture, he finally winds down. "So, for Kalandor's story to be true, I not only would have to have turned rather wicked for poorly-explained reasons, but also quite stupid as well. You, dear brother, have been tricked."
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  13. - Top - End - #433
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    A Dark Deception

    Songs were the greatest gift that Saven had ever been given. True, he had stolen the first one, as far as one could steal from Fayruz, but the rest she had taught him. He'd never thought of his voice being something that could bring relief and solace, not his rough, low voice. The only person his voice had possessed any power over was his blood-brother, until sweet Fayruz had chosen him to serve her, and had given him the ability to heal, to remove sickness and fatigue, to take on the suffering of others.

    He leaned heavily on his staff, a simple length of mountain-wood that he had been given by a woman of the Iuneh, as he finished a song, his deep voice trembling into nothing. He removed his palm from the brow of a young warrior, two heavy fingers trailing down their forehead in blessing, and rose with a grunt of exertion. Of all the warriors of the Tekeza, he had possibly been the most hale, and still the music of heaven stole from his strength harshly. But that was the way, was it not? If he were not willing to give, others would not be able to receive health and strength.

    "Saven, I have some questions that need answering." Saven turned slowly, looking over the brother of his teacher and goddess. He was a giant of a man, at least as tall as Gamesha himself, but with a beard that spilled down over his chest, a thick tangled bush that was... well, Saven would not judge the brother of his goddess, but it was almost as unseemly as the feminine way that her brothers left their faces uncovered among strangers. But he would not judge; perhaps that beard was Haramhold's mark of pride, just as Gamesha's scars were his.

    "I will answer," Saven replied, lowering himself to a seat on a boulder by the trail's side, and gesturing for Haramhold to sit down as well. If he were not moving, he preferred to be sitting, to conserve his strength. And he was moving so often.

    "Tell me of my sister's time here, spare no detail even those you deem insignificant," Haramhold continued.

    Saven raised one eyebrow, his incredulous expression hidden behind his veil. He coughed politely, and said, "I... am not a fine storyteller." If only he had asked Shyreza, or even Gamesha! Saven's strength was not in his tongue; he did not enjoy speaking, as some of his fellows did. "I was there when Gamesha, chieftain of the Tekeza, dragged her from the burning hall of Tarn Beastslayer, last chieftain of the Aferi, our ancient enemies... he made her his fool. When we came here, I met her when she tried to leave the camp in the dark, intent on purging the river. I went with her, and we healed the river. I watched her destroy a... a thing, a creature... without skin, part horse, part man... I have not the words for it. She made the river clean. And, too, she drew a dragon's black soul out of Gamesha, my blood-brother, who had only done her wrong, and Gamesha became her loyal warrior then... and the river crowned her before the chieftains of the tribes, and she blessed them, washing their, their wounds away... she has done much more, brother of the blessed goddess, but details... I am not a storyteller, that I might give them. She has cured the people of their plagues and sicknesses, she has healed the hearts of lovers and performed marriages between noble youths, even warriors and maidens... she has overseen births and she has stayed by the side of the dying, she has ridden from one side of the rocklands to the other, always in motion, speaking with spirits and healing the wounded, is this what you wished to know?"

    Haramhold nodded, his eyes deep and ancient, and Saven realized that he truly was in the presence of another god; a god that was, perhaps, almost human, just as Fayruz was, but was still partially spirit, and much stronger than he was. "And tell me, has my sister been sleeping well?" the god asked, his voice deep and slow.

    Saven considered that question for a moment, staring up at the god, before replying truthfully, "She rarely sleeps. I have slept but three nights in the past six days. She has slept less. This is the burden of those who heal, brother of the goddess. Our skin turns pale, our limbs shake, our nights are without rest, for we give of ourselves that others might not suffer. I... I have begged her," he continued, slowly, "to rest. She cannot. The rocklands are wide, and there is much here to be done. And always there are those who need her touch." He was silent for a long moment, looking up at Haramhold, and then continued, his voice almost as rough and tattered as Gamesha's, "I would ask you to help her, but I know that you are her brother by birth, and I see that you are like me. So I will tell you. Help her."

    "Fear not, I have not traveled across the breath of this world just to twidle my thumbs," the god replied, placing one wide hand on Saven's shoulder. Saven nodded, gripping his staff tightly, understanding that what would be done would be done. "I need you to find me," Haramhold continued, "a man or a woman who both knows the land nearby, and is well-versed in the ways of war."

    Saven considered this. Gamesha was, of all the warriors of the Fayheran, the strongest and the finest, and he was a good tracker, but he had no head for the ways of war, his place was in the thick of it. The Wolf Lord, perhaps, but Saven feared that the Wolf Lord had no respect for the family of the Maiden of Dusk, merely the goddess who had set him free of his sins. Out of all he knew, then, that would both work eagerly with Haramhold and knew the ways of war well... he would bring Kureza, a warrior of the south, whose long braids were woven with bones that stood stark white against her night-dark skin. He nodded, and without a word stood and went searching for Kureza.

    Haramhold's eyes were deep, and old, but they were good eyes, faithful and strong. Haramhold, despite his unfashionable hermit's beard, and his stumbling in etiquette, was an ally of the Fayheran, Saven knew instinctively. He would give him whatever aid he could.

    ***

    Fayruz had never been the swiftest, back home in the White City. Whenever her siblings had decided to race off, or to see who could fetch for themselves the last pastry, Fayruz had always been trailing behind them, her skirts gathered in her hands, or her hand descending upon the plate by the time that the pastry and all other hands had already been pulled off. And so it was that now, Jongo and Frellon had outpaced her, for her legs were stumbling and tired, and only Gamesha's helping arm kept her walking on. Gamesha himself had slipped back into his nervous habit, words tumbling like leaves in autumn from his mouth, laughing and joking about how her family's reuniting was the kind of event that made monsters tremble and dragons hide away in their caves out of fear, and how perhaps beards would return in style now that Haramhold had displayed his magnificent beard before the people, even if they were hard to hide beneath veils the way a man should properly be dressed among strangers, and how he thought that Shyreza had her eye on bold Frellon - a joke that earned him a sharp, flushed retort from the sullen maiden - and so on and so forth, his triangular, jagged teeth glinting in the sunlight.

    But she could feel, even as one of his arms was wrapped about her shoulders, subtly tucked beneath her armpit to support her should she fall, how his other hand was wrapped tightly about his forge-hammer's leather-wrapped handle, ready to pull it from his belt in a moment. And she could taste in the nearness of him, feeling the sweat on his skin, his desire to do so, a lust for blood that she had not felt in him since the night of black sand. He wanted to take that hammer and bury it in Faden's skull, to punish him for every man, woman and child who had died that night, to crack and shatter bone until there was nothing left. It was, perhaps, an echo, a groove etched out by a dragon's claws.

    She reached up and touched his bronzed face, resting one finger along the old, pale gouge that ran from the edge of his forehead, grazed his eye and cut through the bridge of his nose, and kissed the corner of his mouth before reaching his chin. She looked up at him, only her eyes visible between her hood and her mask, and he looked down at her, caught between desire and guilt. His arm slacked, his hand released its bloodless grip on the hammer's handle, and his pale lips parted in... apology? Protest? Sorrow?

    Then, Amanda, Haramhold's beautiful daughter, was by Fayruz's side, and Gamesha's face split into a sharp, fake grin. "Well, if it isn't the ruttin forgemaster's daughter? Come to keep us company, gazelle-eyed girl? You'll have to excuse me my wolf's teeth; I won't eat you up, though, from the looks of your legs, I could hardly ruttin catch you! Where's your father, then? Coming along? Or is meeting another of his ruttin brothers beneath him? My joke, gazelle-eyed maiden, my joke - no need to be skittish." Fayruz merely glanced at her, nodding. She seemed to be a very sweet young girl, perhaps not as bold and confident as Shyreza, but still sweet.

    Amanda took one of Fayruz's hands in her own, and pressed it against her chest, and- suddenly, Fayruz felt a surge of power, the kind of power that she'd felt that day at the base of the Olm, raw power that was her birthright. It was all-too-little, but it brought fire back into her eyes, and took away the pain of walking. Amanda, meanwhile, nearly fell - but there, Shyreza was there, in her red-and-gold, ensuring Amanda did not fall.

    It took the four of them only a few more moments to reach the river, in which Jongo stood, twice the height of any normal man, and there was Faden, lost in those funeral-wrappings which Kalandor had told her about, and there was Dasque, bright and radiant - and there, standing up suddenly beside Jongo with a frown on her face, the Mother, spirit of the river, berating him for driving her waters mad. Gamesha licked his lips, grinning ever wider, as they approached, and Fayruz reached up and pulled back her hood, and pulled down her mask, revealing herself to her siblings. "Faden," she whispered through dry lips, looking at him, unsure whether to run or to embrace him. Then, louder - "Faden!"

    She took a few steps more, standing on the other side of the river, her hair spilling back over her shoulders. The Mother stepped back, glad to see Fayruz there, and Shyreza and Gamesha flanked her as she looked at her siblings, her face pale and her hair ever-darker, like sand next to ebony, her eyes like the sun shining on gold. She ran her tongue along her lips, nervous, and before Gamesha could start - as she could feel he wanted to - reciting the numbers of those lost by the households of the Fayheran in that bloody night, she said, "I can speak for my people, eldest brother-sister. Let me." The look she gave Faden was stern; she wanted to embrace him as her brother, and tell him that she had missed him so much, but she could remember all-too-well the smell of funeral pyres and wet, slick blood from that night, and the screams of the injured and the dying. And it hurt. And so she stood there, on the other side of the river, her eyes as hard as diamonds, holding her zealous bard and knight back without having to touch them.

    Then, Kalandor shambled past her, and that diamond-hard anger and sternness softened. "Brother! Kalandor! Get back... Gamesha, help him!" Gamesha was already loping forward, laying a hand on Kalandor's shoulder as he waded into the river, with a false laugh reminding him that his sister had already tried to close his wounds, and he should rest.

    But even as she did so, the Mother, the river-spirit, reached down to the blood pooling in the water with a frown. She began to touch it, with fingers as clear and pale as the finest mountain stream, and then jerked her hand back, her eyes wide.
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  14. - Top - End - #434
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    The despair of the godling and his people could hardly be described with words. Their work, their hope, their everything... gone in a night. A terrible buzzing swarm had descended upon their crops, creatures no one had ever seen before, and stripped them clean.

    Accusations were hurled, threats were made, tears were wept, arguments had. These quickly faded into a terrible resignation, however; there was no way they could survive the winter. They were going to die.

    Llassar called all the chieftains together and asked for an account of their supplies. He looked it over, and declared that if they were very, very careful, they had a chance of surviving the winter. Not a very big one, and the cost would be high, but there was hope. And the people collected their stores, and gathered up the remaining bison, and settled in for the winter. It quickly became apparent that this was no normal winter, for the cold winds began blowing almost immediately, and the snow fell in great piles from the sky. The cursed insects, which had devoured their work, did not perish with the falling snow, but tried to get at their storehouses. Watches were set up; their food was protected, although at a cost of frozen toes and hungry villagers.

    During this terrible, hard time, a stranger wandered into camp. She obviously wasn't a chieftain or a great person, from her meager rags and old, frail body, but she carried herself with all the nobility of a queen. Head held high she marched into the great meeting tent, the tent of chieftains and of Llassar, and demanded that she be given food to eat as per the traditions of hospitality.

    The chieftains of the tribes were incensed at this woman, who had come in and demanded (during the time of greatest famine, no less!) she be fed. They rose their voices and told asked her where the food she was to eat was going to come from. As she could plainly see, everyone was starving to death!

    The woman sniffed and said that she had heard time and time again about the hospitality of this place, about the generosity of these people. But obviously her sources had been mistaken, and she turned to leave, glowing with vindication. But her exit was stopped by the entrance of Llassar.

    He was as thin as a stick, emaciated and bony, weak with hunger. He strode listlessly to his place at the table, and took up his meager plate. It took him a moment to realize the presence of the stranger and, and he said: "Who are you? Why are you in our tent, mother?" And Hunger, (for that is who the woman was) told him she had come looking for food, and had been turned away. And Llassar stared at her, and then looked at his place, and then stood and walked to her; he took her hand, and led her to his seat, and said: "I wasn't very hungry anyway, mother, and you look like you could use a good meal."

    And Hunger
    stopped
    and
    stared.

    Llassar was obviously starving; perhaps even close to death. And yet he would sacrifice a life giving, vital meal, one that might allow him to survive the terrible winter Hunger had wrought, simply because an apparently hungry old woman had asked for it. And as Hunger stared into his gaunt face, she found she could not hate him. She could not hate anything at all, actually. In fact, she only felt... peaceful...

    Llassar yelped as the old woman collapsed, the hatred that had sustained her leaving her. He called for aid; but the woman was long dead, and nothing could be done. To clear his mind, he walked outside, into the cold snow... and found that the incessant buzzing of the locusts had stopped. Curious, he walked towards one of the storehouses, only to find the ground covered in the creatures. He stared at them, and had an idea. He reached down, picked one up, and ate it. And he thought: Crunchy, and has a funny taste, but it certainly beats starving...

    What he did not notice was that after that day everything seemed sharper; the fields seemed to speak to him of their secrets, the forests seemed to lose their malevolence; and so it passed that Llassar ascended, realizing the divine spark held deep in his breast, and growing into the Lord of the Harvest- although note that the title doesn't say whether it's a harvest of corn or a harvest of bugs!
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  15. - Top - End - #435
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    Darkness Upon the Olm

    As Faden finished speaking, Kalandor's hand landed softly on his shoulder. With a shuddering breath, his body seemed to relax, ever so slightly.

    "I believe you, brother."

    Then, the river spirit knelt to examine the blood of Kalandor, and even as she recoiled, the hand on Faden's shoulder snaked up to close around his neck in an iron grip. Kalandor's head shot up, and upon his face blazed eight pinpricks of yellow light, the malign spirit of the puppeteer finally shining through.

    "It seems you require the direct approach."

    Gamesha barely had time to register the change before a savage backhand sent him skidding across the water into the far shore, his ribs shattered. In that instant, it seemed to Faden that black strands erupted from Kalandor's body, wreathing him in a miasma of twining shadow. The thing inside Kalandor smiled, and the Olm erupted into chaos.

    Leaping with explosive force, the puppeteer slammed Faden into the far bank of the river, his free hand twisting into razor claws. Before the other divine siblings could act, the land about them rebelled - from the bloody trail in the dust sprank a flowing river of black sand, flying through the air to strike Frellon and the Weaver full in the chest. The blast hurled them into the air, following behind their tumbling forms with hungry tendrils outstretched. In the river itself, golden blood turned as black as pitch, coursing into the river spirit and holding her in thrall. Jongo found himself unable to move as the waters swirling around him surged upwards, attempting to crush the life out of him. Dasque moved to help, only for dark waters to constrict her feet, dragging her into a murk where even her light might die.

    All this Faden saw, before the puppeteer's knee collided on one arm with a force that would have crushed bone, had Faden still possessed a skeleton.

    "Let's keep you from using those marvelous gloves, yes? You've cause me quite a bit of concern, dear Faden. But thanks to your brother's stunning lapse in judgement, we get to meet face to face. I must admit, I'm rather pleased with the result. So pleased, in fact, that I'll give you a choice before you die - which of your sisters shall I rape first?"
    Last edited by TheDarkDM; 2012-03-27 at 06:14 PM.

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  16. - Top - End - #436
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    SLAM!

    Head over heels Frellon flew; for the first moment, he was so utterly confused he just tumbled, but then his training kicked in, and he stabalized his flight. Hitting the ground rolling, he came to his feet swinging, his sword unsheathed, and practically glowing with a deadly pale energy.

    The black sand parted where the sword touched it, grains of sand disintigrated where the blade made contact, but the sand still advanced. Frellon gave much ground, retreating in order to buy himself time while he figured out where this sand came from and exactly what was happenin-

    The words peirced Frellon's awareness, the voice was unknown, and full of malice. "-a choice before you die - which of your sisters shall I rape first?"

    All confusion vanished, Frellon was lent a purpouse, an outlet.

    Sand that had been reaching for his legs behind his back recoiled, as if it suddenly could not bear the touch of him. Frellon's very veins flowed with an influx of power, and any tiredness he might have felt from the previous hours of the sword-dance evaporated. His razor focus intensified along the edge of his blade, and The Sword of Heroes burst into golden flames, burning up the black sand in an arc as it moved.

    Frellon swung his sword flashed in a maze-like pattern, weaving a defense no mortal eye could follow. Any of the vile sand that attempted to pierce his defenses was rendered inert, lifeless, cleansed of evil, by his immolated blade.

    Foot by foot, Frellon advanced into the onslaught.

    OOC:
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    Frellon was knocked some distance through the air, and will slowly attempt to fight his way back to the others. His progress is up to the GM.
    Last edited by AntiMatter101; 2012-03-28 at 11:00 PM.
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  17. - Top - End - #437
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    A Dark Deception

    The world spun as Dasque was pulled into the dark murk, spiralling as the monster had the sensee to disorient her, keep her for lashing out against it. She held onto her spear, somehow, but she could not attack it.

    Something within Dasque stirred.

    Through the murk, her heart cried out to the wind, her mastery of it trying to pull it down into the fray, to pierce through the muck and keep the darkness from engulfing her, to give her leverage over the foul thing.

    Again, an emptiness grew within her. The will of Baz'Auran was not so easily dismissed as Dasque had hoped, and the killing intent was rising ot the surface. It had never disappeared, not truly, not fully. Dasque did not hear the choice it gave Faden, but she felt the way it wriggled around her leg when it said it. It made the choice easy.

    With cold, calculated murderous intent, Dasque called the wind to her aid.

  18. - Top - End - #438
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    The Weaver had watched. He watched as Kalandor delievered his message, and collapsed. He watched as his recently arrived siblings debated what to do. He watched as two new siblings, Faden and Dasque, came to the Olm. And he watched as Kalandor stumbled down to the river. All the while, one thought resounded in his head.
    "This feels like a nightmare."
    Kalandor just didn't feel right. His movements were subtly wrong. At first, The Weaver chalked it up to his injuries. But as he kept watch, The Weaver grew less and less sure. Something was lurking just on the edge of Kalandor's being, something black. Evil. Controlling and hungry. The Weaver did not like it. But it wasn't until Kalandor's-no, the not-Kalandor's, deception was lifted that The Weaver could see what they were. Black threads, hanging from Kalandor's form, drifting off across the sand, towards the south. Something had control of Kalandor, and it certainly wasn't Faden. Faden's spark was bright blue, and full of power and life. This was the same black as the darkness which had assaulted the White City, and it was empty. Hungry.
    The time for watching was over. The time for action was at hand.
    The Weaver took the silver thread he had saved from Fayruz's song, and focused on it. It grew, and grew, and finally, it split. From The Weaver's hands launched ten silver threads, surrounded by a soft purple glow. They sped forward, and struck Kalandor in the center of his chest. The silver threads wrestled with the black ones, forming a tapestry of conflict and wrath. The Weaver forced his mind through the song-threads, and found himself in the Dream-time. Silver threads surrounded him, twisting and turning. Before him, a similar cacoon of black threads writhed, their very prescence grating against The Weaver's mind. "I do not know who you are, or why you are here. But my brother is not your puppet. You are not welcome in this place. So you are going to leave. Your threads will be taken out of my brother, and you will slink back under the rock you came from."
    ATTENTION ANYONE WHO I'M PLAYING WITH:
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  19. - Top - End - #439
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    A Darkness Deception Upon the Olm

    That.

    Was not.

    Kalandor.

    Jongo felt squeezed and pushed by the waters around her, and was confused. Only a second ago, the water had been friendly; now it was literally trying to kill him.

    But by squeezing her bones? By crushing him?

    Whoever this Not-Kalandor was, they weren't very bright. Because that was just ridiculous.

    Oh, it hurt, for sure. There was pain. But it was the pain you feel when you stick one finger in the palm of the other, make a fist to entrap that finger, and then pull. It was pressure. And pressure pushed.

    So. Jongo focused, and soon shrank. And stretched. And grew wings high up on her neck. And shrank. And stretched. And it was all the more faster because the water was still pushing along, helping Jongo to change.

    Soon, Jongo was a thin, lengthy serpent with large feathery wings that flapped once - twice - three times and Jongo slipped out of the water. With a slithery hiss, Jongo tried to calm the Olm down. He'd seen the matronly figure of water that seemed to appear when Fayruz was starting to show up. Jongo thought that might be the river's spirit. So Jongo spoke with it, quietly, calmly.

    "Mother Olm, why do you ansssswer this one'ssss call? He sssseeks to harm Flower and our family. Be at peace, resssst at ease. Wasssh away the foulnesss, and let it travel down the ssstream. Remember your watersss are your own. If you have no other way of helping ussss, then at least heed his magicsss no more. But if you want to give us aid, then help me to ssseparate him from my brothersss and sssisters. Help me to wash Kalandor clean and free."

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    Up to you, Dark, as to what happens here! I'm afraid of overstepping myself.

    If the water is willing, Jongo and it will start to work together to pull Kalandor away from Faden. If it's not, then I'm at least hoping it will calm down, and stop listening to the Puppeteer.
    Last edited by Gengy; 2012-03-29 at 12:27 AM.
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    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    "What-the-Jongo?"
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  20. - Top - End - #440
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    Haramhold was about to begin a great labor when he stopped himself. He was getting lost in his work again. He mustn't let that happen, what if Faden overpowered Jongo and Frellon while Haramhold stood here playing with his crystals? No he must not allow himself to be distracted again.

    Deciding to see if Kalandor had recovered enough to confront his attackers the god asked one of the nearby spectators where his brother was resting. Happily obliging the spectator lead him to the healing tent where they found nothing but a trace of blood leading toward the river.

    Fearing the worst Haramhold followed the trail as fast as his legs could carry him turning back only once to instruct his guide to find The Weaver and ask for his aid.
    Last edited by shorewood; 2012-03-28 at 03:15 PM.
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  21. - Top - End - #441
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    Darkness at the Olm

    Faden's voice was, at last, a dry and dead thing, devoid of any of the tones of affection or showmanship it normally carried. "The time for threats is long past." A normal person would have been unable to speak through the grip around his neck. But then, a normal person would have had their spine pulverized by the impact. Neither of those events was a great problem for Faden.

    This wasn't to say that he was in no danger - just the opposite: it was only a matter of time before the dark creature tried to tear him limb from limb, and that could very well kill him. Time to prevent that from happening.

    The creature of darkness could hurt him, it was true, but like all of its plans so far, the black sand's attempt to keep him from using Ego and Id was half-baked and only partially reasoned out. Yes, with his hands pinned there wasn't much the gloves could do, but that was hardly Faden's only option.

    Faden was never without options.

    Drawing up his power, he focused and moved, shooting out of the grip holding him in a way that the being still hadn't learned to anticipate. Halfway through the impossible maneuver, illusionary copies of Faden scattered about, each one concealing one of his sprites. Made from a tiny part of his spark, each sprite could mimic it well enough to fool a stranger's cursory inspection (assuming they could sense sparks at all), though he doubted it would trick his siblings.

    Immediately on landing, the images darted every which way. One sprinted for the Olm, another into the water, and others moved to his siblings, appearing to try to aid them. For his part, Faden was about to shout some advice to Jongo when he saw his older brother get clear anyway.

    Taking stock, his other siblings were doing better than the initial instant of the fight would have led him to believe - Frellon and Dasque were holding up well, but it was the Weaver who had the right idea. Channeling his power through Ego and Id again, Faden saw clearly the heavy and dark connection looping out of Kalandor's back and heading south. From the Weaver's antics, he could tell that his thread-wielding sibling could see it too.

    Attempting to disentangle the connection would only interfere with the Weaver's efforts, Faden decided, and so he leaped at Kalandor, deliberately falling short and hanging off of the black threads - seemingly hanging in midair to everyone but Weaver. Swinging around on it like a prize gymnast, Faden landed on top of it and put his strength, magical and otherwise, into simply attempting to fray and tear the threads of the connection in half. They were much stronger than the one he had damaged in the Burning Peaks, but any extra strain on them would make his brother's job that much easier.

    And to the connection, he whispered. "You have angered the children of Baz'Auran. You have already lost - all that remains is the noise before your death."
    Last edited by Jade_Tarem; 2012-03-28 at 03:26 PM.
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  22. - Top - End - #442
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    There is a river whose streams make glad the city of Fayruz,
    the holy place where the Maiden of Dusk dwells.
    Fayruz is within her, she will not fall;
    Fayruz will help her at fall of night.

    Shyreza's palms had been moist as she stood among gods at the edge of war, her fingers sliding against each other nervously. She could feel the tension between siblings betrayed, just as she could see see the formless god challenged by Jongo, and the brilliant-white woman beside the formless god. The storyteller had a glass blade by her side, but would it be enough to protect her lady? Fayruz had stood before the spirit of glass unarmed, guarded only by her father; did she have power that Shyreza did not know? Certainly Jongo, the shapeshifter, seemed powerful beyond men, and so too the lion-god, but were they merely men with magic? Would the shining sister of Fayruz die if Shyreza cut her throat with a glass-edged blade?

    It is easy to say things in stories: 'Gamesha was thrown aside by the wanderer'. It is another to see Gamesha, the scarred clown, the fool who dogged Fayruz's holy footsteps, thrown from the center of the stream to the bank with a heavy crunch, landing like a corpse against the rocks. For a sickening moment, Shyreza thought that he was dead, that the stupid, loud scarred warrior had just been slain. And then, as everything became confusion and madness, black sands raging up in the wind and the river turning against the gods, the Mother herself wrapped about dark tendrils, she saw him raise his head in a mad, broken laugh, trying to force himself to his feet with blood running from his mouth.

    "Amanda," she said, drawing her sword and standing before Fayruz, "Run. Bring as many warriors back with you as possible, and bring glass blades. They'll know what that means. Fayruz! Go! They will not touch you, I swear!" Shyreza felt a hand upon her shoulder, and Fayruz stepped past her, her face as hard as a warrior's, no sense of fear or rage on her face.

    "Shyreza," Fayruz said, in a voice that was calm, quiet, and yet had more strength than any warlord who had ever lived in the rocklands, "You will help Gamesha back to safety." She continued on, then, her step sure and steady, towards the horrors of the battle.

    The river ran black with the traitor's blood, darkness that Shyreza saw more clearly as she ran swiftly to Gamesha's side. Gamesha's twisted face was open and grinning and mad, blood trickling down his chin, as he tried to pull his hammer from his belt. There was more blood, she realized, darkening his forge leathers, and a rib jutting out awkwardly from between two plates of leather. And he was laughing, madly.

    "I'm gonna ruttin kill that ruttin son of a worthless ruttin bitch and spill his ruttin brains all over the ruttin sand for ruttin dogs to vomit on," he rambled as she gingerly tried to find a spot to lift him by that wasn't giving way horribly under her hands. Shyreza hissed for him to be silent, and looked up as she pulled him half-upright, terrified of what was going on - only to see Fayruz enter the water.

    She took one step. And then another. And then another. Each one was slow, deliberate, and - judging by the way she moved - very difficult. The black water rose up against her, pushing her back towards the shore, and yet she still walked towards the Mother. As Jongo spoke something to her, Fayruz forced her way through the black sludge of the river, and placed her hands upon the Mother.

    Fayruz's song was so bright, so pure, that Shyreza knew that it could be heard across the Olm. Gamesha, in her arms, shook, sighing through bloody lips as he heard Fayruz's song. And slowly, slowly, the darkness fell away from the Mother, in disgustingly visceral strips, almost as if Fayruz were tearing away dead skin from a wound.

    "Come on," Shyreza hissed to Gamesha, "Come with me! We must get you out!" And then, Shyreza added to herself, she could return and see if gods died to sharp glass blades.
    Last edited by Raz_Fox; 2012-03-28 at 03:33 PM.
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  23. - Top - End - #443
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    The Challenge

    'I will die before I surrender Markien to a slaver. In the White City this is how we salute with honour our opponents before battle.' Trice Carolinus struck his sword against his shield. With each metallic note that echoed among the trees the darkly shimmering veil around Black Buttress sprung out in all directions. Dark tendrils in menacing counterpoint to the sweet notes flickered about the knight of the White City.

    'The challenge is met! Carolinus darted forward. He could not hope to cover such a large gulf without swift attack, nor did he expect to. Among him a dozen duplicates sprung to life, each like Carolinus a shimmering figure covered in spirit armour that burnt white light into the eyes of whosoever beheld it.

    But the Khar was no fool, still his warrior's eye was set upon Carolinus. The great spear loomed, deadly intent given titanic form. Carolinus threw himself to one side, barely avoiding the deadly thing's head, that which burrowed a furrow six feet deep into the ground beside him.

    The white figure held out the shadowy disk at it's side and black inky tendrils wrapped themselves around the monolithic shaft. They sped up the spear, appearing at once like black liquid and a living mass of utter darkness. When they reached the Khar's hand they leapt up to his face, covering his eyes and mouth with a sticky pulsing black mass.

    Before he could recover his wits the whole bizarre entity burst into black flames.

    The Khar threw back his head and gave out a cry equal parts rage and pain. Yet he was still Khar Melkhan, warriorborn, his instinct remained intact. He dragged back his spear. The shadows stretched at first but then broke, ending the magical attack.

    Carolinus saw the rage in the Khar's eyes, for he was watching them closely. The break in eye contact had cost the Khar, he no longer knew which shimmering figure was his true target. They darted between them, anger made him desperate to attack, but iron restraint shone within those giant orbs as well.

    All came at him at once. He attacked the closest, it splintered into shimmering light crystals that dissolved within seconds to nothing. The spear met no resistance as it split the figure and passed onward to rent the earth once more.

    Carolinus had dared to hope this initial gambit would keep him safe until he had at least blooded the Khar, but once again the great warrior showed his warrior's worth. He leapt back, his long legs undoing in one bound much of the precious distance Carolinus had so far won. The spear darted out, but not toward any of them. Instead Khar Melkhan threw it out to one side, before swinging it in a great arc. Each of his illusions collapsed into light as it passed through them.

    The shaft caught Carolinus and threw him back, his shining armour all that prevented the end. He came crashing down hard and tumbled helplessly backward. By the time he regained his feet he had only a second to leap clear of another attack.

    As the ground shook beneath his feet and clods of dirt and grass rained around him measured the distance to the forest behind him. The Watchman winced realising just how little taking that blow had won him. Yet as the dread weapon drew back and he moved his eyes to his enemy he saw that the Khar had moved closer to the forest's edge in order to attack.

    Black tentrils snaked out, wrapping firmly around the spear as it came back. The Khar remembered the danger and quickly wrenched his weapon upward. Carolinus had expected no less of his foe. Instead of stretching this time the shadows dragged him onward with them. He first flew through the air and then swung on a long line of writhing ink. Once he reached the apex of his swing he severed the bonds and desperately threw out new ones.

    Once again darkness blinded and choked the Khar. As he tore at the shroud desperate to breath he did not see Carolinus finish his swing. He felt what happened next however. In order to become firmly lodged upon the Khar's back he switched his sword to an underhand hold, wielding it like a dagger he plunged it home.

    He had hoped to land somewhere he could attack the Khar's vulnerable flesh, but it was not to be. Instead the majority of his blow was spent piecing the breastplate, he hardly wounded the Khar at all. The rent metal did however afford him the purchase he sorely needed. Once again the shroud around the Khar's head and trailing down his back burst into dark fire.

    He roared in pain as his great hand came reaching back but he was unable to reach Carolinus. So instead he did exactly what Carolinus had expected, he threw himself on his back in effort to crush his foe. In so doing he finally crossed into the forestland, from which Carolinus took what little gratitude he could before a weight like he had never imagined crashed down, hammering him deep into the ground. Even the greatest wards the ways of the White City could offer could not keep the pain and shock of such an impact, nor could they stop the air rushing from his lungs.

    He resided in darkness and ignorance for what might have been a second or an eternity, then the great weight above him shifted. Khar Melkhan rose to the challenge once more. Carolinus had kept hold of his sword hilt but now saw it was wasted effort, the blade had broken. He had thought the trees might have split the Khar like nails, yet looking around the saw why they did not. The trees were all felled beneath the Khar, but they were unbroken. Carolinus had not fortified the ground around the trees, which had parted beneath such great weight and velocity like air before a rhino.

    He ran for cover before the Khar could apprehend him, ducking low behind a bush and beneath a patch of low hanging and greenly verdant foliage. He dispelled the glowing armour, though he kept many other potent wards in place.

    He watched to see what the Khar would do next.
    Last edited by Ladorak; 2012-03-28 at 05:06 PM.
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    The Human Spirit also by KP. The Raynnverse lives!

    Vagrant and Seal by Smuchmuch

    Vagrant by Darth Raynn

    Sentient #6 Avatar by kpenguin. Clearly the best picture of a M&M character named after a Nevermore song there has ever been.

  24. - Top - End - #444
    Ettin in the Playground
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    Behind Black Eyes

    Kalandor mourned as he could do nothing but watch from behind his eyes. They were his, but he was kept well away from them. It was all he could do to keep the being from 'remembering' some of Kalandor's abilities, and some of the abilities he believed to have developed in others.

    Heck, this other mind was so stupid. If it wasn't for it's brute power he would have definately slipped through.

    In fact, watching the combat, some of it's actions were laughable. Chocking a bundle of wrappings? Entangling a shape shifter? Not using his own shifting powers?
    But then again, it was using a majority of his own physical prowess quite well.
    A really stupid spirit.

    However, making sure that he didn't move along with Faden was a challenge. In the spirits own thoughts.
    "This forms been doing that for decades. Seriously, what does he think he's doing, a quick..."
    And so, feeling his form build up it's own desolidifacation, he through all his strength into stopping it, horrified at it's intended destination.
    A meter further.
    About 30cm down.
    He knew his form could do it, It had used 'ghostly' trandsport on a few occasions. Kalandor couldn't think Faden could take being combined with sand.

    And it worked. Kalandor didn't come with Faden. His physical form fell to the ground, his fingers digging amoungst loose soil.
    The spirit was smartening up though.
    It simply flowed up, no rolling or such, it was almost as if some greater power simply rotated him 90 degrees.
    And so with rage, he began to roar, ready to leap at Faden that the spirit almost completely ignored that death was entirely possible.
    But Kalandor, still exhausted, did the one thing he could.
    Talk.

    "Do you want to die? I don't, and you truely are stupid if you do. We need to fall back and regroup. You need a plan. I am the fastest here, and you know I can easily acheive speeds thricefold as fast as the next fastest god should I need. Exhaust this form, take time to rest, then think this through, or you will die here!"
    The words echoed in the back of the spirits mind, filled with more force than he felt.
    "I already have an idea, so let's go while their disorganised and mourning."
    He hated saying this. But he had to. He needed to suvvive, and his siblings were more likely to find a way to kill him that make him suvvive if they had time. And his idea could well expell the thing.
    Last edited by Erik Vale; 2012-03-29 at 09:45 PM.
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  25. - Top - End - #445
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    Darkness Upon the Olm

    Within the black cocoon that held his mind, Kalandor endured the Puppeteer's shrill laughter once again as he urged it to retreat. Staring down at the huddled mass of his soul, its every word dripped venom.

    "Die? How foolish are you, morsel? Do you think I would invest any permanent part of myself in so frail a vessel as you? No, should this body fail the only one to perish will be you, slipping into darkness to the sound of my laughter."

    The creature slipped into more maddening laughter, until a ripple seemed to go through the very air. It's eyes shifted, and a low growling chuckle echoed through the cocoon.

    "It seems the dream walker has arrived. How considerate of him to step into my parlor of his own volition."

    Standing outside the tangled mess of shadows that held Kalandor prisoner, the Weaver saw the strands of darkness stretching back to the horizon, forming an intricate web of black light that overpowered the light of the sun. As he made his challenge, a laugh began to reverberate through the strands, a cold, high cackle that sent involuntary chills down his spine. From behind Kalandor's prison emerged a barbed arachnid leg, then another, before the Puppeteer scuttled over to perch atop the cocoon like a throne. It was massive, eight bladed legs holding aloft a bloated thorax that ran into a wide, bladed abdomen. It's head sat atop a short, articulated neck, and broke from the image of an insect with a long, reptilian maw of needle teeth and a curving fringe of bone, though the eight blazing yellow eyes overpowered them to create the impression of a monstrous demon spider. It's chitin was bone white, and the black ichor dripping from eager jaws gave its forelegs the impression of being bloodstained.

    "So I come from a rock, do I? Strong words from a child of twilight bereft of home or throne. Allow me to test your delusions of grandeur, dream walker."

    In an explosion of motion, the Puppeteer was flying towards the Weaver with a speed he'd have deemed impossible for something of its size. The Weaver dodged a slashing limb, but as it caught the edge of his shield the fibers of Fayruz's song parted like mist. Taken aback by the thing's potency in the dream realm, the Weaver was forced to dodge again as another leg came hurtling towards his chest, rending the ground where he'd been standing into dust and starlight.

    "What's wrong, dream walker? Why haven't you banished me yet? Come, draw forth your powers! Rend my mind! Sunder my soul!"

    The Weaver dodged another strike, then another, only for an unseen thir leg to catch him across the side. With a grunt, he went skidding over the misty plains of dream, until he was on his back staring up at the Puppeteer's onyx teeth.

    "Or perhaps I'll simply kill you and disprove your bravado. Prepare yourself, morsel."

    The Puppeteer's head reared back, but before it crashed down upon the Weaver its entire form flickered. Behind them, the shadowy web faded, ever so slightly, and the Puppeteer's head whipped around...

    ...staring at Faden through Kalandor's eyes.

    "Insolent child."

    The Puppeteer snapped Kalandor's fingers, and a flurry of black sand twined around Faden. Only this time, instead of writhing futilely about his inhuman body, the sand snapped together at the last instant, forming a spear of black glass. The impact lifted Faden from his perch, driving him to the ground. While the arcane energies of his body were quick to erode the jagged shard, he remained pinned for the moment. It might have ended for him then, had Dasque not come hurtling from the river, propelled by a twister of wind, water, and dust. Aiming her spear at Kalandor with a battle cry, she came crashing down, only to find her thrust cut short as Kalandor's hand wrapped around the shaft. Seemingly unperturbed by the metal blade in his shoulder, Kalandor's arm whipped around, slamming Dasque into the ground with a *thud*. The Puppeteer stepped forward, only to stagger back as a wave of energy erupted from the River Spirit as she was cleansed, sending Fayruz tumbling away before sinking beneath the swirling waters. Taking a moment to assess the situation, the Puppeteer saw Frellon advancing inexorably towards him, saw Jongo flying with impunity above the battlefield, saw Faden and Dasque recovering from its attacks.

    "Impressive. Perhaps I shall have to expend some effort, after all."

    Without warning, the sand engulfing Frellon withdrew, only for a spear of black glass to come shooting up from beneath him. A blow of his sword saved Frellon from grievous injury, but instead of flying away the shards of glass rebounded against him, cutting long furrows in exposed flesh before reforming before him in a bloody, slashing blade. Above Faden and Dasque, a river of black sand came crashing down, exploding into impaling spikes they barely managed to dodge. Before they could gain a steady footing, the sand landed again, and again, each patch of jagged spikes driving them back. Jongo moved in to help, only to see Kalandor's body rushing towards past him, gleaming claws raking his scaly flank before dragging him back to the ground.

    Far away from the battle, a bottle of black sand burst without warning, the contents spiraling into the air towards the battle, diving into Saven and sending him rushing unwillingly towards the battle. As Fayruz recovered her footing from the stunning purification of the river, she heard his voice ring out.

    "Fayruz, look out!"

    She turned, only to find his arm moving with a malign will, the blow sending her staggering back. Before she could process what was going on, Saven's hands had her by the throat and had hurled her against the bank once more, even as he pleaded for her to run. Then, his voice was not his own, and the Puppeteer laughed.

    "Stay out of this, little flower, or you'll have the privilege of seeing your beloved servant eviscerated from the inside out."

    The Challenge

    As Carolinus bounded towards cover, the Khar did something he truly hadn't expected. Roaring in a battle rage, he unfastened his shield and sent it spinning towards Carolinus. The heavy metal discus sheared through the surrounding trees, colliding with the ground below Carolinus' running feet and sending him sprawling into the underbrush. Spinning his spear into a steady grip with both hands, Khar Melkhan bellowed a challenge.

    "You fight with cunning, my lord Carolinus! But cunning shall not spare you the wrath of a Khar of the First People!"

    Breaking into a thundering run, the Khar leapt into the air as Carolinus was regaining his feet, bringing his spear down at the child of Baz'Auran with crushing force. Carolinus dodged, if barely, only to stumble again as the impact of the spear sent a tremor through the ground. The momentary recovery cost him, as the Khar's sandaled foot whipped out to catch him in the side, sending Carolinus flying once again.

    Standing over his prone opponent, Khar Melkhan sought to land the killing blow. A lesser warrior might have been skewered by the Khar as their reflexes failed, but Carolinus' defensive reflexes were peerless among the gods. A lesser shield might have buckled beneath the tremendous weight of the Khar's spear, but Black Buttress had been forged in shadow and death, and it would not bend. Though it sent a shudder through his arm that nearly tore him apart, Carolinus deflected the titan's blow and regained his feet. Seeing the Khar caught off balance by the strength of his shield, Carolinus struck at the one weak point he could reach, and rammed Black Buttress into the titan's knee. Cartilage cracked beneath the force of the blow, and shadow fire burst from the point of impact, searing in the pain of the dislocation. Carolinus danced away from the Khar's counter strike, and as the titan tried to follow Carolinus noticed a limp.
    Last edited by TheDarkDM; 2012-03-29 at 02:20 AM.

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    ...one could possibly refer to you guys' elaborate dance of allies-to-enemies-to-suicide-of-the-universe as some sort of weird art form.

    If one were on drugs.
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    Behold, the mighty slayer of strangely coloured mutant equines! The thwarter of forum woes! The! Dark! DM!

  26. - Top - End - #446
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    Sonata Announces

    The troubled expression of Sonata brought words of concern from Renard's as he approached attentively to his goddess.

    "What is wrong, my lady?" He asked gently, sitting next to Sonata, who stared south in yearning.

    "I can feel my family, they are here and there. But their songs are not harmonious to me. Something is wrong, different." Sonata closed her eyes.

    "I can bring rain and blessings to Ecchr,
    and Ar Maen can be hear in the city
    spoken and sung by the first people
    who give joy and praise, to my family.
    The foxes of Kodama
    the dragon lord of Madako
    all serve me proudly.
    But I cannot imagine how far I must go
    once again to see my family.

    Of these words Renard thought and comforted Sonata with his laugh. "Moon child, why is despair so quick to your heart? Surely a goddess must have more patience? Where you will go, I will also go. And behind us, my clan will always travel. Have you ever thought to send a message?"

    Sonata looked uncertain. "Can my song reach all of them?" The fox smiled slyly.
    "Lady Sonata, think fox-like! You are more cunning than this fox! I only say to you, to assure you what you already know." And Sonata made a sly expression and then laughed.

    "Of course, let it be so. Listen to my song!"

    And the song was clear and steady, and echoed off of the mountains. When it hit the sky it split into a multitude of rainbows, shattered and turned. And Sonata wove them with her song, so that the shards of rainbows fell to the earth as rain drops, and where they hit, the ground sang with echoes of their melody. And the song carried on the wind, skipping delightfully across the seas, to reach her family.

    And the song was like this:
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    "Hear me, vast land
    awakening from sleep!

    And of my brothers and sisters,
    numbered myriad
    shining of the moon's glow
    hear the white city's songs
    remember, and hear
    with perfect fulfillment, shine upon me
    your love and your memory,


    Faden, have you yet mastered your secrets, where have your thoughts turned, but from me?
    To Faden, the song stirred a memory, of Sonata laughing lightly while listening to some puzzle explained. A wry and mischievous smile, but with love in her eyes.

    Khalen-Het, what has become of your stern figure and thoughts?
    To Khalen-Het, an unrepentant Sonata, sullen after some argument with Nieve, seeking his support as she complained.

    Carolinus, are you still my loyal brother unchanged?
    To Carolinus, a memory, of Sonata watching the training from the side, with Nieve and Fayruz. Though she feigned disinterest, there was a look of excitement when Carolinus won his duel.

    Jongo, eldest sibling, what form do you wear, is it still joyous or now tear-stained?
    To Jongo, a myriad of images, of pranks shared and traded, but mostly the exasperated look of admiration, when she was outdone by her elder brother.

    Soreal, my free sister, where do you walk now, no longer the gardens of eternity?
    To Soreal, the memories of sitting by the fountains as Sonata played her flute, coaxing the trees and flowers to the two in moment of natural harmony.

    Lossethir, far brother, what songs of victory do you make now?
    To Lossethir, a distant memory, of Sonata at a banquet, and meeting her eyes. A questioning look of concern, but hidden quickly by a smile and a passed moment.

    The Weaver, named brother, do you still weave your visions truly?
    To The Weaver, an admiring but childish Sonata tugging on his arm, begging him to weave another picture of Fayruz and her playing music together.

    Kalandor, where have you wandered, is it beyond my ear and voice?
    To Kalandor, an image of Sonata now, preparing for her own journey, standing upon the mountains and looking far off.

    Rumel, over the hammer songs, can you hear me?
    To Rumel, the drums of the symphony, played before Sonata as she winked slyly before her solo began.

    Aramar, I cannot see you, but under the moon do you still walk?
    To Aramar, a memory of the two looking down at the disk, guessing at the future.

    Brandis, fair brother of joy, do you keep the memories of the white city strong?
    To Brandis, a memory of the great parties and song in the banquet. Sonata sharing a moment of laughter.

    Frellon, honorable brother, what songs are sung of you now?
    To Frellon, a memory of Sonata demanding to place a wreath of flowers on his head before a practice fight. And then her loving laughter as Nieve chased Sonata from the room.

    Haramhold, my brother, what new thing have you built today?
    To Haramhold, a memory of Sonata's eyes in delight and wonder, as he showed her some new creation of his.

    Shirvan, dear brother, does the confidence still burn in your eyes?
    To Shirvan, a memory, of some fiery argument with Sonata, just reaching it's height, when a feeling of guilt is shared in their eyes.

    Llassar, dear brother, do you still rest peacefully like those younger days?
    To Llassar, the memory of quiet times and gentle flute music. A sister, playing happily while her brother relaxed among a bed of fallen autumn colors that danced to the song.

    Avyra, my sister, what color is the moon from your eyes?
    To Avyra, a distant memory of Sonata, playing by herself by the fountains, and looking lonely.

    Dasque, dear sister, does your light bless these lands in father's place?
    To Dasque, an image of Sonata cheering for her sister to not give up, when she was tired from battle practice.

    Contragh, my brother, do you remember your proud ambitions?
    To Contragh, a memory Sonata playing her flute passionately, chasing her own goals strongly.

    Nieve, elder sister, what song do you dance to now, that our moon home is gone?
    To Nieve, a nostalgic image of Sonata, for once looking guilty, and hugging Nieve as Fayruz looked on with approval. A song that smelled of spice and rain.

    Fayruz, dearest sister, where are you? When will we be together again?
    To Fayruz, uncounted memories, of those times playing music together in the fountains, of secret smiles at banquets, of silent times of sleeping together upon the grass, of too many memories to be counted.


    These were the feelings of the song of shattered rainbows, and wherever the fragments fell, the song resounded and swiftly the shards carried across the sky by white and gold foxes, until they came to the children of Baz'Auran.

    Overcome with emotion form her own song, Sonata turned to Renard and demanded.

    "I don't care about the danger, but you must lead me south." Renard shook his head.

    "My dear moon princess,
    You must be more like a fox,
    less like a dragon,

    Return to Ecchr at Madako and wait for your siblings songs,
    for you don't know how they have changed.
    There will be time to meet them,
    and at such a time, you will have made a fox-like plan!"

    Sonata sighed, and returned. And she turned her frustration into blessings, and traveled along the coast to unite the tribes there. And the people of the three lands became united, to be known as Walasye, and they became wealthy, as the songs of Ar Maen spread among them.
    They built great stone temples and began to dress on long robes, decorated with gold and silver, and necklaces of pearls brought from the great sea. And sometimes the songs of Ar Maen would lure even the dolphins to come and play.

    But Sonata was anxious, and often could be found on Echo peak of Kodama mountain to listen for the replies of her siblings.
    Last edited by Kasanip; 2012-03-30 at 04:46 AM.
    Kasanip's Sketchbook 2 Thread
    It is difficult to speak English, please excuse mistakes kindly m(_ _)m

  27. - Top - End - #447
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    Dark Sands

    A shadow and two pinpoints of light, trailing bluish smoke, loomed up behind Saven. "Nothing... but noise." Numerous images of Faden's gloves appeared, latching on to Saven and tearing something free before hurling the poor servant aside. Saven immediately began gagging and coughing, but at least he wasn't trying to murder Fayruz any more.

    Faden collapsed to one knee, throwing up a hand behind him. A glowing blue demisphere appeared just as an armlike protrusion of darkness slammed into it, glass shattering against the wall.

    But the puppeteer was far from done. More onyx blades slammed against it, and cracks started appearing. Faden grunted. "Fayruz. Kalandor is weak right now. He's been dragged across the desert twice, beaten, injured, corrupted... you name it. You have to make him strong again. The Weaver and I can hurt this thing... but I think it will take Kalandor to drive it off."

    The shield shattered and an new arm whipped around. "Oh sh-"

    Faden was swatted aside again, trailing an even greater quantity of the blue misty substance leaking from somewhere underneath his robes as the godling skipped across the sand like a thrown ragdoll.
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  28. - Top - End - #448
    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: Heroes of the Fall

    Quote Originally Posted by TheDarkDM View Post
    Darkness Upon the Olm

    Within the black cocoon that held his mind, Kalandor endured the Puppeteer's shrill laughter once again as he urged it to retreat. Staring down at the huddled mass of his soul, its every word dripped venom.

    "Die? How foolish are you, morsel? Do you think I would invest any permanent part of myself in so frail a vessel as you? No, should this body fail the only one to perish will be you, slipping into darkness to the sound of my laughter."

    The creature slipped into more maddening laughter, until a ripple seemed to go through the very air. It's eyes shifted, and a low growling chuckle echoed through the cocoon.

    "It seems the dream walker has arrived. How considerate of him to step into my parlor of his own volition."

    Standing outside the tangled mess of shadows that held Kalandor prisoner, the Weaver saw the strands of darkness stretching back to the horizon, forming an intricate web of black light that overpowered the light of the sun. As he made his challenge, a laugh began to reverberate through the strands, a cold, high cackle that sent involuntary chills down his spine. From behind Kalandor's prison emerged a barbed arachnid leg, then another, before the Puppeteer scuttled over to perch atop the cocoon like a throne. It was massive, eight bladed legs holding aloft a bloated thorax that ran into a wide, bladed abdomen. It's head sat atop a short, articulated neck, and broke from the image of an insect with a long, reptilian maw of needle teeth and a curving fringe of bone, though the eight blazing yellow eyes overpowered them to create the impression of a monstrous demon spider. It's chitin was bone white, and the black ichor dripping from eager jaws gave its forelegs the impression of being bloodstained.

    "So I come from a rock, do I? Strong words from a child of twilight bereft of home or throne. Allow me to test your delusions of grandeur, dream walker."

    In an explosion of motion, the Puppeteer was flying towards the Weaver with a speed he'd have deemed impossible for something of its size. The Weaver dodged a slashing limb, but as it caught the edge of his shield the fibers of Fayruz's song parted like mist. Taken aback by the thing's potency in the dream realm, the Weaver was forced to dodge again as another leg came hurtling towards his chest, rending the ground where he'd been standing into dust and starlight.

    "What's wrong, dream walker? Why haven't you banished me yet? Come, draw forth your powers! Rend my mind! Sunder my soul!"

    The Weaver dodged another strike, then another, only for an unseen thir leg to catch him across the side. With a grunt, he went skidding over the misty plains of dream, until he was on his back staring up at the Puppeteer's onyx teeth.

    "Or perhaps I'll simply kill you and disprove your bravado. Prepare yourself, morsel."

    The Puppeteer's head reared back, but before it crashed down upon the Weaver its entire form flickered. Behind them, the shadowy web faded, ever so slightly, and the Puppeteer's head whipped around...

    ...staring at Faden through Kalandor's eyes.

    "Insolent child."

    The Puppeteer snapped Kalandor's fingers, and a flurry of black sand twined around Faden. Only this time, instead of writhing futilely about his inhuman body, the sand snapped together at the last instant, forming a spear of black glass. The impact lifted Faden from his perch, driving him to the ground. While the arcane energies of his body were quick to erode the jagged shard, he remained pinned for the moment. It might have ended for him then, had Dasque not come hurtling from the river, propelled by a twister of wind, water, and dust. Aiming her spear at Kalandor with a battle cry, she came crashing down, only to find her thrust cut short as Kalandor's hand wrapped around the shaft. Seemingly unperturbed by the metal blade in his shoulder, Kalandor's arm whipped around, slamming Dasque into the ground with a *thud*. The Puppeteer stepped forward, only to stagger back as a wave of energy erupted from the River Spirit as she was cleansed, sending Fayruz tumbling away before sinking beneath the swirling waters. Taking a moment to assess the situation, the Puppeteer saw Frellon advancing inexorably towards him, saw Jongo flying with impunity above the battlefield, saw Faden and Dasque recovering from its attacks.

    "Impressive. Perhaps I shall have to expend some effort, after all."

    Without warning, the sand engulfing Frellon withdrew, only for a spear of black glass to come shooting up from beneath him. A blow of his sword saved Frellon from grievous injury, but instead of flying away the shards of glass rebounded against him, cutting long furrows in exposed flesh before reforming before him in a bloody, slashing blade. Above Faden and Dasque, a river of black sand came crashing down, exploding into impaling spikes they barely managed to dodge. Before they could gain a steady footing, the sand landed again, and again, each patch of jagged spikes driving them back. Jongo moved in to help, only to see Kalandor's body rushing towards past him, gleaming claws raking his scaly flank before dragging him back to the ground.

    Far away from the battle, a bottle of black sand burst without warning, the contents spiraling into the air towards the battle, diving into Saven and sending him rushing unwillingly towards the battle. As Fayruz recovered her footing from the stunning purification of the river, she heard his voice ring out.

    "Fayruz, look out!"

    She turned, only to find his arm moving with a malign will, the blow sending her staggering back. Before she could process what was going on, Saven's hands had her by the throat and had hurled her against the bank once more, even as he pleaded for her to run. Then, his voice was not his own, and the Puppeteer laughed.

    "Stay out of this, little flower, or you'll have the privilege of seeing your beloved servant eviscerated from the inside out."
    Behind Black Eyes.

    Kalandor felt horror. Only he would die from these events. He held little doupt that his bretheren was stronger than this puppeter, and terror griped him. However, considering how much power he burned up with that one tiny act of defience, adrenalin was quite possibly preferable than cold logic.

    And then the weaver stepped in.
    How could that happen?
    How was his sibling in his mind?
    Focus Kalandor. Focus....

    And Kalandor looked on, feeling horror at the beasts actions. It's claws struck out at The Weaver, even as his physical fom struck at his other siblings with black glass. Obsidian was the word that lept to his mind, but it wasn't that. Not only was this stuff unatural, it bore a different feel.

    And then he saw Fayruz, being struck by that things will. Idea's were flooding through his head. He had to seperate that things will as much as posible, but to attempt to free himself, he had to have that being placing as much attention as he could have it place elsewhere.
    But Faden had already saved her. Was his mind really running so slowly. He had to get out.

    He was in a cage, steel bars struck into bassalt for a roof and floor, surrounded by the black webing.
    The biengs atention was elsewhere. Will power wouldn't be the sort of thing to get him out as soon as possible. He had to use trickery, even with this imagery provided he knew it was merely an ilusion of his mind. That thing could have more spare will than Kalandor thought.
    However, he had to try.
    And so the images of his bones turned as a felines, becomeing flexible. He reached through the bars, he attempted to grasp at some of the webbing, while forcing himself through.
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  29. - Top - End - #449
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Gengy's Avatar

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    Aug 2005

    Default Re: Heroes of the Fall

    Of course the Band of Chaos would pick that moment to start playing music that was alien and unusual and - strangest of all - possibly on key.

    Great, Jongo thought, as he saw a river of black sand started to pound at Faden and Dasque. Because the last time you played music went soooo well.

    The Band of Chaos laughed, and continued to sing out it's weird melody. Jongo dived in, intent on pulling Faden or Dasque or both to safety.

    It was a mistake. Jongo felt more than saw Kalandor's claws raking her scaly skin and pulling him to the ground. Unlike the squeezing from before, sharp pain erupted from where scales met claws, and Jongo could taste blood in the air.

    Her blood.

    Father, this hurts! Jongo hissed in pain, and focused on Kalandor, pushing the pain away for later. Whatever weird claws Kalandor was using, Jongo still had the body of a lengthy snake.

    From watching the Ceiling for so many years, Jongo had a healthy respect for snakes. Most of them just wanted to be left alone. They would hunt for their food, but they would also warn away anything they thought wasn't worth their time. Some of them even, much to Jongo's delight, had been blessed by Father to have rattling tails that shook with an unusual sound.

    There were also several that were longer than two men lying down, and thicker than a human leg. And some could - literally - mesmerize their prey.

    So while the pain was bad, Jongo ignored it and pushed his snake body to be bigger, stronger, with oddly flickering green and grey eyes, and - hissing in laughter - couldn't help but dance to the odd tune that the Band of Chaos was creating. That dance twisted and turned, and Jongo slithered in the sky around and around Kalandor's body, as they fell with a thump against the ground.

    Taking the force of the impact very hard, Jongo grunted, but did not stop wrapping herself around Kalandor. Soon, only Kalandor's head was visible, but Jongo could feel those claws - those painful claws - scraping at the insides of his constricting form. So Jongo squeezed.

    Squeezing a shapeshifter - something that Jongo had happily helped to teach Kalandor how to do - wasn't smart. But it would distract them, even if only for a moment. And other than the claws, Jongo hadn't really seen Kalandor's body change much, which means that whatever held Kalandor wasn't able to use his shapeshifting well enough.

    So Jongo's snake head bobbed back and forth, back and forth, in time with the low rumble of music and... the weird sounds started to make an uncommon sense.

    "Look carefully, you oderous rotting piece of bamboo. Look into my eyes. Listen to the music. This body is going to get very... very... sleepy." For good measure, and for reasons Jongo didn't even quite understand, he began to change her scaly skin color from black to white and back again, over and over, in time with each rocking of her head and the beat of the susurrus of noise from the Band of Chaos.

    "Let go. Let go of my brother. Take a rest. Be at eassssse." Jongo pushed with his mind, and with the help of the Band of Chaos, tried to contest for control of Kalandor's body. Tried to mesmerize and charm and distract the will that was already fighting on so many levels. Jongo didn't know why, but he felt compelled to say, "Trussst in me. Jussst in me."
    Last edited by Gengy; 2012-03-29 at 05:27 AM.
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    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    "What-the-Jongo?"
    Before you insult someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, you'll be a mile away, and have their shoes!

    Getting my Master's Degree for games (yay!). Very busy (boo!).
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  30. - Top - End - #450
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Sep 2010

    Default Re: Heroes of the Fall

    The Dream-time
    The Weaver could feel his insides crumple as the Puppeteer struck him across the side. It was uncanny. This beast was strong, far stronger here than even the Dark Ones had been. The Weaver could see now how Kalandor had been entrapped by the Puppeteer's foul web. This was a being of raw power. How could they hope to stand against it?
    Then, two things happened. First, the Puppeteer flickered, and The Weaver could glimpse Faden attempting to cut through the black threads. The battle was hard in the physical world, and The Weaver bore witness to Faden being struck by the foul shards of glass. But then a second thing occured. From far, far away, The Weaver heard something. It was faint. It was soft. It was light. But it was imbuned with great power. It was...yes. It was a song. A song of the White City. As The Weaver heard the song, he was reminded of one afternoon, early in creation, with a younger sister.

    The White City
    "Weaver! Oh Weaver! Won't you weave me another picture? One of me and Fayruz?"
    The Weaver chuckled. "Sonata, I've woven you two three tapestries this week already! There's not much more I can weave! You haven't changed enough to make something new." Sonata looked saddened, and The Weaver grinned slyly. "But if you like, I can show you something I've been working on." Sonata nodded eagerly, and The Weaver took her hand, leading her through the many paths of contemplation. Deep in the woods, strung across two mighty trees, was a massive trapestry. It clearly was not finished, but already many stories had been woven into its weft. "This is the World Weave. It's the story of every thing and every one that ever lived. It isn't done yet, but I'm going to keep adding to it as long as I can." Sonata looked in awe at the tapestry. Then she smiled and pointed. "Look! There's me and Fayruz!" The Weaver laughed. "Yes, little sister, yes it is."

    The Dream-time
    The Weaver reached out, and from the air shimmering from the waning vibrations of Sonata's song, he plucked a thread of rainbow, shimmering reds, oranges, yellows, greens, blues, indigos, and violets. The rainbow thread slid down The Weaver's arm, and it met the silver threads surrounding The Weaver. Rainbow threads began to join the shifting shield of silver, and The Weaver rose to his feet. "You know who I am? You think me merely the dream walker? Let me enlighten you." The Weaver danced away, the twin songs of Fayruz and Sonata sounding within the Dream-time, combining, twisting together, woven into a single whole by The Weaver. The Weaver twirled and leapt around the Puppeteer, laughing as he did. Light filled the space, coming directly from the twin songs. "To the children of the ice plains in the far north, I am known as Morodia, the Slumbering King. Those who ply the oceans between the endless forests of Aramar and the sands of the waste, I am Kolorki-na, the Serpent who Encircles the World. The ancient jackal-people of that waste think me and Kalandor one, and call us He That Wanders. To my brother Faden's people I am Desire, bound to his gauntlet in eternal service. I am stories, I am art. Every mortal knows of me, for I am with them all. Each has a different name for me, but everywhere I am known by one name. I am The Weaver." Then The Weaver ceased his dance, and his face grew dark. "But by one name you will know me. For just as I am all these things, so to am I this. I am the monster under the bed, the eyes in the blackest cave. I am that which swims in the deepest ocean, and which hunts in the forest at night. I am fear. I am the dark dream. I AM REVAEW-NA, THE NIGHTMARE KING!" The Weaver's purple aura, surrounding the threads which even now snaked and twirled, turned blood red. His second eye glowed the same blood red, and The Weaver lifted upward, supported by the song-threads. "AND YOU WILL KNOW FEAR."
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