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Toy and Minion

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About Toy and Minion

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    Wearer of the Aardvark Armor
  • Birthday 04/16/1990

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  1. Yeah, and I totally forgot to add it in the scene, but being possessed was the only thing that saved pianoplay3r from dying by touching the Tellor.
  2. I'd have to look at my notes, but I'm pretty sure that Locke was killed for making the less than fantastic choice of attacking with Dallar against the Pirates.
  3. (Verbal) Minua Oramel, Assassin, Transformed Innocent Assassin, has Died. (Meesh) Phidan Oramel, Adventurer has Died (Thorum) Acrasifer, Second Alfa of the Asteri Pack, has Died. GAME OVER!!! Those alive have won. Technically, this is an INNOCENT win. Congratulations. Info to be posted in due time. Plus, I have an Epilogue that I will post later. Hope you all had fun, even though it took so long, and suffered from inactivity. Hope you liked the story if you read it. Any feedback on that would be welcome. PM if you like.
  4. “No.” Sorine said, head up and back straight in proud defiance. “This is wrong and you know it.” Teral and Kial steeled themselves with her. Anamira seemed truly shocked. “You’ve drawn the line, Anamira.” Menden challenged. “Be sure you’re proud of which side of it you stand.” “Enough of this.” The head Guardian cut in. “The Tellor. Give it to us now.” Dallar had not taken his eyes off of Anamira the entire time. He didn’t know exactly how to react to this. Sure, Vidan had warned him in his letter that she could not be trusted, but he had hoped otherwise. After everything they had been through, after their recent leap in their relationship, after it all, she turned her back on him again. Hollow. He felt hollow. Finally Anamira looked at Dallar, and he saw that the choice was ripping her apart inside. He wanted to feel sorry for her. But she had made her choice. Duty over love. He should have expected it from a former soldier. “Dallar.” She tried. The plea in her voice tore at him. He smiled. “What tangled webs we weave ourselves into,” he whispered. “As if we intentionally seek to destroy ourselves little by little.” He held up the cloth-wrapped orb. “You want this?” The Guardian nodded, hand on sword. Dallar shook his head softly. “Very well. If it was so important to you Anamira. So important to cast aside everything else. All the lives lost to get here. All for this. It’s so important to you, then take it.” He tossed it in the air. Everyone gasped. Anamira made a basket out of her arms and caught the orb against her abdomen. It remained protectively covered. “I hope you can sleep at night.” Anamira backed up so that the Guardians created a protective wall between her and the others. “I’m sorry.” She whispered. “Right.” The head Guardian barked. “Kill them.” “What?” Anamira burst out in alarm. “That wasn’t the order!” The Guardian sniffed. “Order comes directly from the Matron and supersedes yours, Purveyor.” He nodded and bows were drawn fully, bowstring strained. Just then another group burst through the twisted trees and into the clearing. For the longest time, Guardians and pirates simply stared at each other. Then the pirates roared and the Guardians turned their weapons from the voyagers and to the newest threat. Arrows flew through the air, swords flashed. Dallar wasted no time in drawing his sword upside down in his left hand, flipping it quickly so that it was held right, he rushed forward. Anamria ducked her head from the arrows and ran right into Dallars blade. Dallar let the tears fall from his eyes as he helped Anamira slowly to the ground. He watched her eyes water and then go grey and lifeless. He held her head reverently, pressing his forehead against hers in silent, unknown prayer. He lifted his head and kissed her brow gently. Then he stood, wrapped Tellor in his hand. A Guardian rushed him with a sword. Dallar dodged and grabbed the mans sword arm, knocking his elbow into the Guardians face and wresting the sword from him. He slashed the sword across the mans chest, easily cleaving through the gilded armor. “Let’s go!” Menden shouted. Dallar turned and ran with them into the twisted forest, leaving the battling parties far behind. They ran with no direction, only needing to get away. How had both the church and the pirates found them? How had they gotten to land? These were questions Dallar desired an answer for, but had no desire to stop to ask. Dallar thought they should go back to the Asteri, see if the ship was fixed yet. If the Asteri were still alive. As the hour passed and they grew weary on top of weary, they were forced to stop for rest. Dallar took the time to ask his questions. “Where are we going?” was his first. “The pirates and the Guardians had to arrive here on ship as well, and there is only one way they would have taken.” Menden wheezed. “Not the Godpass.” “Because only death seekers take the Godpass.” Dallar joked stiffly. Menden smiled. “You seem to be in good spirits considering...” He faltered, not able to bring himself to continue.. “So, where are we going?” Dallar said quickly. “North of Therbor, the direction we’re going,” Dallar looked at the sun. They were? “Is a place called Crasitin Tal. It is one of the few point of Wystwrn that resides at sea level, and thus can be berthed normally.” “What about the Asteri?” Menden shook his head. “We can’t worry about them now.” It was cold, but true. After they had rested, they began their trek again though the twisted trees. They had no sense of direction, and could only trust that Menden knew where he was going. They came out of the forest and saw a ship resting in the distance. Whether Pirate or Saevorite, they could not tell. They began again, but Dallar stopped Menden. “I can’t let this get into anyone’s hands.” Dallar said, holding out the Tellor. Menden looked at him curiously. “What do you mean to do?” “I’m going to find a place to hide it. Maybe I’ll bury it. I don’t know.” “Why not just toss it into the sea when we leave?” “I don’t know.” Dallar said uncertainly. “But it feels right that I do this.” Menden’s face became very sad, as if he understood far more than Dallar did. He nodded. “Go. Take two with you. The rest of us will secure the ship.” Dallar nodded and motioned for Linedor and Kial to join him. The two followed unquestioningly, weapons ready, though they were probably too tired to use them effectively. Dallar ran back into the forest, seeking out what was calling him. * * * * * * * * It happened to be the Pirate ship Menden gave out the orders, and they borded the ship in quick succession. There were a handful of pirates to take care of, but nothing that the Tsilnar brothers could not handle. One pirate surrendered, and they spared him to take them to the captain’s cabin. He opened the door and stepped through. Blood splattered them and the body was no more. “Do you like it?” Nightheart asked, stepping into view. “It is a special trap I created myself. I like to call it the bloodnet. Suiting, isn’t it?” Teral growled and moved to charge, but Menden stopped him. Nightheart chuckled. “Smart. Anyone who steps through that door ends up like that fool and adds another coat of paint to my ship.” “Go secure the ship. Keep an eye out for the others.” Menden ordered, pushing the other three away. They obeyed grudgingly. Menden stood stoic before the threshold. “You haven’t changed, have you, Cere-” “Nightheart!” She snapped. His smile seemed to display his disgust. “Nightheart. That name suits you, unfortunately.” He reached out his hand and grabbed the air. Previously invisible threads of red appeared in a complicated net, like a spiders web. Menden simply pulled and it all unraveled. “You made a mistake, Nightheart.” He began. “A mistake? You made many.” Nightheart accused. “You flew the ship through the Godpass. Direct influence.” Menden nodded, but did not seem berated. “You just could not stand Gevastus Sern demeaning your every action. You’ve never been one to play second fiddle, and it was only a matter of time before you killed him and took over. That was your latest mistake. Taking direct charge as the leader.” Nightheart countered, “You split the tidal wave to save the ship.” “A tidal wave you created, and then stopped from submerging Kyzet.” Menden said. “And you took them to Adirsone.” Nightheart finished. “So it would seem we are even. You cannot interfere any further without me being allowed to counteract you.” Menden looked at her challengingly. “Unless you wish to test yourself against me again. We know how that went last time, however.” Nightheart laughed. “That was a long time ago, old man. I am far stronger than I was then.” “Strong enough to destroy me?” Menden asked. Nightheart hesitated. “I warn you,” Menden continued. “Even if you can beat me, it will be a long and arduous battle that would likely destroy Wystwrn itself. I would fight you myself, but I don’t have time. I need this ship.” Nightheart smiled deviously. “We are even, Atal. Giving you this ship would give me one over on you.” Menden sighed. “I know. In one decade. That’s when you can use it. Is this agreeable?” Her smile turned into a smirk. “Agreed.” Then she laughed. “You fool. You’ve secured your own defeat.” She walked passed him out of the cabin. He knew she would be gone for that decade. She would not resurface until the time came, so that she could plan her next move to the detail. He would have quite the task when that time came. But that would come when it came. He needed to get everyone away safely, and this ship was their only option. He left and found the others waiting. Isaer turned to Menden curiously. “That Nightheart just walked out like nothing had happened. We thought you had lost, but didn’t dare attack. She told me that my heart held a special place for her. Then she just left.” Menden sighed. “She means to cut out your heart and place it in a jar to place in an empty space in her cabinet.” Isaer jumped at that. Teral laughed. “That’s tough love, brother.” “She is so much like her mother.” Menden added quietly. Not quietly enough. “You know her mother?” Isaer asked in shock. “She’s human enough to have a mother?” Teral mocked. Menden only shook his head, tired. He would not have been able to defeat Nightheart after all he had been forced to do. He was barely able to hold his body up from the ground. He had bluffed greatly, and he would pay for it sooner than he liked. They saw figures come out of the forest. Asteri, surprisingly, and at least one human. Menden could not tell if there were more, nor who the human was until they grew closer. Menden cursed, rushing down the gangplank. “Where is he? Where is Dallar?” He demanded. Kial Asondar shook his head in shock. * * * * * * * * Dallar was reaching the place that was calling to him. It was close, so close. The sound of a twig snapping drew his attention to the left. The Asteri lead by Acrasifer appeared. It was too good to be true. Dallar went to them, smile on his face. They did not seem happy at all, but Dallar supposed that was to be expected. They were going to get left behind. Dallar hoped they would understand and forgive. “Did you get the ship repaired?” He asked, hoping to relax them. Acrasifer shook his head slightly. “Give us the stone.” He growled. Dallar stopped, looking at the Tellor in his hand. What was going on here? Why did they want it? How did they even know about it? He glared at them. “The Pact.” He threatened. “Our Pact to get you to your destination safely did not interfere with our Pact to bring back what was retrieved to our other Client.” Acrasifer barked. “I see.” Dallar said, understandingly Different Packs, different Pacts. “We would like to see you home safely as well,” Acrasifer said. “But it is not within the Pact.” “I’m afraid I can’t give this to you.” Dallar said coolly. “So if we must fight, then know that you will have to kill me.” “Gladly.” Acrasifer barked, leaping at Dallar who had no time to react. The Asteri was almost upon Dallar when he was thrown into a tree by blue blur. The blur was Kylan, who was easily kicked away. The two Asteri began circling each other. “You wish to challenge me, Clawless?” Kylan barked. “Dallar is my Moonbrother. If you will kill him, you will kill me first.” Acrasifer let out a pleasurable growl before leaping upon Kylan. The two were a tangled ball of fur and teeth and claws. Dallar would not have been able to take his eyes off of the scene, except for the glint of red at the corner of his eye. He turned but it stayed in thee peripheral. He kept turning until he had turned completely around, and then he saw her. He also saw the arrow flying toward him. Time seemed to slow and merge. He was back in Sted, with the fire and smoke and ash and death. He had his bow drawn, pointed at the back door of the house the enemy general and entered from the front. The door opened and there stood the silhouetted figure, a glint of red like the generals plume. He let the arrow fly and saw it connect with the figure, even as the arrow pierced his own chest. He began to fall backwards in sync with the figure in Sted. Then he was staring up at the burning sky through the twisted fingers of those dead trees. The girl with red hair looked down at him, much like he had looked down upon her still body, drained of life by his hand. The ghost that haunted him never-ending. She had gotten her revenge. A life for a life. “I am so sorry,” He whispered. “I didn’t mean to kill you. I’m so sorry.” Tears poured from his eyes. She smiled. “I know.” Her voice was like the chimes of a bell. Angelic. Innocent. Forgiving. She reached a hand out to him, and he took it in his, smiling back. He was standing beside her, barefoot, just as she was, and always had been. “I’ve been waiting for you.” She explained. “Now we can go.” She began leading him to the door of light he had not seen before. He looked back and saw his body splayed out in the ash, arrow protruding. Blood mixed with the ash to make a sickening mud-like slop underneath him. He did not feel any sorrow for leaving it behind. He was comforted by the fact that the Tellor had rolled out of his hands and was now lost in the forest floor of ash, possibly never to be found again. He turned back and began following the girl to the door. “Now we can go.” He agreed. * * * * * * * * As soon as he had seen his arrow strike, Linedor Tinaf had rubbed the yellow gem on his ring to become invisible. He made his way through the forest to the second ship, the Saevorite ship. There was no Weaver, or Shaper, or Ravager to sense him on that ship. He could easily stow away. It didn’t matter where they were going. Anywhere in Arlantin and he could get to his client and let them know the mission had been a success. All the other kills had been misses. He had orderd the Deathseeker Dallar Aunoll killed, and his Hands had failed him. He had needed to take matters into his own literal hands. The food that poisoned the Asteri Alfa, Useanifer, had been meant for Dallar as well, but he had received the wrong information. It had quickly become clear that his Hand, Minua Oramel was having doubts. If she had not died, he would have seen her dead before he left. All things considered, however, Linedor thought that the mission was a great success. Besides, now he didn’t have to worry about one of his Hands, or both, trying to stab him in his sleep to get a bigger cut of the payment. The Assassin leader smiled as he rolled up on an unused cot on the Saevorite ship and fell asleep. Assassin’s never failed. * * * * * * * * Menden Atal sat down hard. Dead. Dallar Aunoll was dead. The Tellor lost. He put his face in his hands. A paw rested itself on his shoulder. It was Kylanifer, the newest Alfa of the remaining Asteri Pack. “I am sorry.” Kylanifer said sincerely. “I should have stopped this sooner, but I was afraid. I was Clawless.” Menden nodded. “Not your fault, Kylanifer. No chance that you know who your client was for the other Pact?” Kylanifer shook his head, mane swaying. “I do not know.” Menden sighed. “Nothing we can do about it. Let’s sail away from this Godblasted land.” There were no arguments. With the Asteri help, they got the ship sailing in no time. With so few men to keep the ship going, the Asteri took the place of an entire crew. To be fair, the pirate ship was much smaller than the t’Grasea’avinifer had been. Teral Tsilnar, Kial Asondar, and Sorine Cucil stood at the starboard railing, staring off into the horizon. They had been through so much, some of it together, most of it alone. It both created a bond, and a wall between them. This voyage had been something they all would remember, but never be able to mention. The knowing, keeping them together; the silence driving them apart. Teral wanted to break the mood, so he pulled out the Stone of Lies. The emerald medallion glittered softly in the sunlight. “Hey Kial,” Teral called, drawing the theifs attention. He tossed the medallion to the thief, who caught it deftly in one hand. He smiled fondly. “I tried to steal this twice.” He muttered. “Damned thing kept slipping through my fingers. And now that it’s in them, I don’t want it anymore.” He tossed it back to Teral. “This mean you’re giving up thieving?” Teral asked. Kial smirked. “Perhaps.” Teral hefted the Stone of Lies in his hand, as if weighing it. “If something disappears from my belongings, I’ll know who to come to?” “Something like that.” Kial replied. They both laughed. It was a bit forced, but they needed to laugh. Sorine strode closer to the railing. “So what are you going to do with that thing?” she asked. Teral looked at the Stone considering. “Well, I certainly don’t have any need for it. And I don’t want it either.” He smiled, and then thrust his arm back and threw the medallion as far as he could. They saw a small glint of emerald before it broke the surface of the water and sunk. Teral wrapped his arm around Sorine’s waist and nuzzled her neck fondly. “What about the church?” He asked. “What are we going to do about that?” Sorine stiffened. “I won’t let it go unsaid.” She confirmed. “They will know my disapproval, and so will the world.” Teral smirked. “Sacrilege. I like it.” Kial chuckled. “And I’m the lawbreaker among us.” “Maybe you’re rubbing off on us.” Teral teased. “That sounds interesting.” Sorine said mischievously, turning and pulling Teral behind her “Let’s try that.” Teral looked at Kial helplessly, and the thief laughed. “You have to sleep in the bed you make.” When the two disappeared, Kial looked back at the horizon, content. They were going home.
  5. Not done yet, but getting there. Have to wait on something first.
  6. “Hurry!” Menden urged. They ran, kicking up ash, toward a twisted forest thicker than the one they had crashed in. It was their only refuge from the pacaft. Dallar kept Anamira ahead of him, believing in the impossible hope that as long as she was before him she was safe. It was not the merit of leadership, he knew. He should be concentrating on getting everyone through this alive, not just the woman he loved. But by the eternal fires, he would not lose her. The pacaft was a large birdlike creature. Its feathers, if that’s what they were, hung from its skeletal shape like moss. Four wings made its presence felt in the constant wind lashing their backs. From what Dallar had been able to see, it had one leg outstretched, two claws opened for its prey. They had not been the intended prey, Dallar assumed. They had come across another creature that Menden had called a hafa. The hafa was also birdlike, only flightless, with long legs that propelled the creature forward with amazing speed. It also had a funnel like beak, from which could poke its retractable needle. That needle paralyzed its prey, Menden had said, and once it was stabbed within you, the needle opened into a small mouth and the creature began to eat you from within while you were still alive, paralyzed and helpless to the eternal pain and knowledge until death finally took you, whenever that might happen. Needless to say, they had killed the thing as soon as they could. But like a trabek drawn to a sijev, the pacaft had come swooping down upon them. Now they ran from a thing unaffected by arrows, Menden proving too weak to be of any use against it yet. It gave a cry of unknown emotion or intent. The creature was so unlike anything Dallar had ever known, he simply could not begin to guess anything about it except that they needed to get away from it. They would be safe under the protective branches of that dead forest. Or so Menden assured. Someone fell, Sorine. Dallar was already past her before he turned to save her, but it was too late. The pacaft swept down, crying in victory as its leg shot out for her. He couldn’t watch, but he couldn’t look away. Suddenly Minua Oramel was there, the strong woman from Orash-kar grabbed Sorine by her belt, lifted her and tossed her ahead just as the pacafts talons snapped shut on Minua’s right shoulder. Blood gushed out and she was lifted upward. Minua screamed in pain, but was able to bring her spear up into the creatures gut. The spear splintered. The pacafts neck elongated and bent down, its leg bending up toward it. Its beak opened horizontally instead of vertically and closed down. Blood. Dallar looked away, forcing himself to run into the cover of the forest with the others. The pacaft looked up from its meal to find itself upon the forest. It cried out in alarm and attempted to stop itself. The twisted trees seemed to come alive, branches whipping out, stretching out to grab the pacaft, wrapping it tight and pulling it in. It was feet above them, being continuously wrapped into a ball by those branches. It was like watching someone close a fist around a rock. Then they heard the cracking of bones or wood. Bones more likely, as the branches continued to wind and squeeze. Red blood gushed out in spurts, then dripped silently. Everything ceased. The branches loosened and unwound themselves, revealing…nothing. No pacaft. No Minua. Like the trees had eaten them. Dallar fell to his knees, overcome with shock. What in the eternal fires was this place? What kind of nightmare had he been forced into? “We need to continue.” Menden urged, breathing as hard as any of them. “Without the Asteri to aid us, we definitely need to get to the temple before night.” “It’s understandable they did not join us.” Dallar said. “Their Pact was to get us to our destination. Technically, we are. Besides, repairing the ship will be much more worthwhile.” He did not mention the doubt that any of them would survive this. He didn’t have to. He stood. “Let’s go.” * * * * * * * * * Dallar watched Phidan Oramel wrapping the head of a spear to a thick staff, making a spear. Remaking his sisters spear. Dallar did not know much of the customs of the Orashkin, but he pitied any creature that decided to stand in their way from this point on, for they would meet Phidan as he sought vengeance. Dallar felt the same about Vidan, only he no longer had anyone to take his vengeance upon. Unless he ran into Nightheart again. He doubted he’d survive the encounter. The sun was falling, Dallar knew, but he had no way to tell how far away sunfall was with the trees blocking his view. He did not know the reason for Menden’s urgency to get there before dark, but he had resigned himself with trusting the Ravager knew more about this place then any of them. Menden stopped. “We’re here.” He breathed. Dallar looked around. He did not see anything different. Walking forward, he peered ahead. He thought he saw a darkness, like that of a cave on a cliff, thought a simple shadow until you got a closer look. Was that what this was? A chill shivered up Dallars spine. He had never experienced such a sensation, but his gut grew cold with a sense of dread. Turning back, he saw two figures standing, watching. Menden spun, a look of worry and fear. “Oh no.” He gasped. “They are out much earlier than they should be. I should have known they would risk the danger. They must be very hungry after all these years.” Everyone had their weapons drawn, not having put them away since entering the forest. Phidan was the only one who did not step back, a look of satisfaction on his face. He would avenge Minua now. “No!” Menden shouted, grabbing Phidan by the arm and pulling him back. The Orashkin was taken by surprise and stumbled back. Dallar and Teral grabbed his arms, steadying him and keeping him back. Menden stood weary before the two figures. “Do you remember me?” He whispered. “No. Nothing remains of your humanity, does it? Nothing remains of Boris and Kand.” He took a breath, and formed two balls of fire that hovered just above his open palms. “I spared you last because I remembered you as my friends. But I will not hold back this time. Leave now, or you will die.” If the two figures understood a word Menden has spoke, they showed no sign. They remained silent and still. If they had not been there before, Dallar would think they were statures. Menden growled. “I don’t want to kill you, but I will! Please, if anything human remains within those twisted husks, leave now and be spared!” Again, no sign of understanding. “Run.” Menden whispered. Dallar hesitated. Menden turned his head, face strained with effort and fear. “RUN!” Dallar ran, ushering everyone with him, pulling the struggling Phidan with Teral. Dallar glanced back to see the two figures dart forward. Their speed made anything he had seen before seem sluggish. Less than a second and they were upon Menden. With a raor, Menden let loose his fireballs in their faces. Dallars ears rang with the explosion. Menden was thrown back slide along the ash covered ground and come to rest feet in front of Dallar. Despite himself, Dallar stopped to see what had become of the figures. Nothing could have survived. The smoke cleared and revealed a charred landscape. No sign of the latest threat. Dallar turned to Menden, who’s entire front was singed from the fire, smoke rising off his body. The Ravager stirred, slowly, painfully rising to his feet. He noticed Dallar watching him and growled. “What are you doing? That didn’t kill them, it only slowed them down. RUN!” Dallar turned back and saw what he had thouth were twigs, and now realized was bone, forming a rough, twisted human skeleton. A dark, sickly moss wrapped around their forms. He saw them clearly now. Their arms ended not in hands, but in scythe-like blades. Their faces, if they had any, were covered by that moss. There was no end to the nightmare. They rushed forward again. Dallar blinked and they had closed half the distance. Dallar opened his mouth in surprise, knowing he was about to die. Then the creatures were knocked back by some unseen force. Then Menden was before him, ropes of white in his hands. “RUN!” He repeated. Dallar began to obey, but then Phidan slipped out of his grasp. Startled, he watched helplessly as Phidan smacked Menden in the back of the head with the butt of his spear. The Ravager hit the ground hard. Phidan picked him up and shoved him into Dallars arms. “You’ll need him more than me.” The Orashkin said simply. “Now go!” Dallar nodded and turned to run with the rest into that shadow he had seen before. It turned out to indeed be an opening, but not a cave. Without pausing, he dropped Menden carefully and turned back to watch. Phidan stood with a spear in each hand, his and his sisters. The creatures hand regained themselves and rushed the warrior, who stood his ground fiercely. One jumped into the air, scythe-like blades swinging down. Phidan reacted faster than Dallar thought possible, catching and deflecting the blades with one spear, jabbing he other spear at the second creature that rolled under and away from the blow. “He can win!” Linedor Tinaf said in awe. The declaration proved to be premature as the creatures attacked in unison from opposite sides. Phidan managed to block one but, Dallar saw the spray of crimson as the other creatures blade cut and ripped deep. The Orashkin fell to a knee. Dallar turned away, already knowing the outcome. “We have to get inside now, before they come for us. Hurry!” They rushed down the stone corridor that seemed to stretch for eternity. They had heard nothing of Phidan or the creatures since, but did not look back. Menden was still unconscious and was being carried by Teral and Linedor. Isaer, Sorine, Anamira and Kial keeping close behind Dallar who lead the way. Was this really all that remained? Seven humans and a handful of Asteri back at the ship? They finally came to a stone door. It was covered in alien writings and symbols. There seemed no way to open it. They had reached a dead end. But no, it was a door, it had to be. There was a way to open it. Dallar glanced at Menden, wishing he was awake so that this could be figured out in an instant. Dallar rubbed his temples. “It has to be something written on the wall. A riddle, or a phrase to speak.” He looked over it carefully, seeing nothing familiar except for a triangle made op of four smaller triangles stacked together. It didn’t tell him how to open the door though. He turned to Anamria. “Anything stand out to you? To anyone?” Everyone took their time gazing at the door, but no one had any more luck than he did. They began poking and prodding the door. Feeling for some hidden notch, something that might trigger the door to open. Dallar finally pulled out Vidan’s letter, hoping to find some clue within its contents. It was blackened by ash, and barely legible any more. In fact, the only thing easily read was Vidans name and the Tinnarnon sigil beside it. Dallar studied the sigil. Three triangles. He looked back up at the triangle on the wall. Four triangles making up a large one, or just three? It was all he had to go on. He reached his hand up and touched the top triangle. It shifted slightly at his touch. He smiled. Thank you, Vidan. He rotated the top triangle until it pointed upside down. There was a click and it stayed in place. He rotated the other two triangles until they clicked into place. When he finished, the three triangles formed the sigil written on the letter. There was a sound like rushing air and then the door rose up, revealing the inside of the temple, Therbor. * * * * * * * * The interior of the temple was an inverted tetrahedron. Stairs ran down to the center of the temple, where a colorless light emendated, illuminating the entirety of the temple. Dallar could only assume that it was called a temple for other reasons than religious gatherings of worship. The term must have been more out of lack of a better word. Perhaps for sanctity. Not that it mattered anymore, Dallar knew. They made their way down the stairs quickly, if quietly. The two bearing Menden taking more time to be careful. The stairs seemed to go on forever, the bottom never getting any nearer. Time seemed to stop, a strange peace coming over him. A peace that seemed to contradict itself in its necessity. It took him a while to figure out why the peace felt odd. It was like something was forcing it upon him. He struggled against it, but he was fighting his own natural emotions. Seeing the agitation and fear on the faces of the others only made the experience more surreal. When they reached the base, they found a plinth that held a small black orb. Menden was stirring awake by that time, but Dallars gaze was fixed upon that orb. Was this it? Was this what it had all been for? What all the lives had been sacrificed for? What was it? “Dallar, don’t tough it!” Menden warned. Dallar shook his head, finding himself before the plinth, hand stretched toward the orb. He backed away. That orb was what was forcing that peace upon him, he knew. It was seducing him, he realized. Menden struggled to make his way to the plinth. He was weak and scarred, but everyone was too tired to lend him any aid. Menden bent over the plinth. “There is writing here.” He began to recite. “To find the truth of lies, you need the three of four.” Dallar didn’t even ask. Menden would figure it out. “Someone will have to pick it up, but-” “I’ll do it!” Isaer Tsilnar shouted, jumping forward, hand outstretched. Menden tried to stop him, but was too weak and surprised. Isaer’s hand closed upon the orb and he immediately withdrew, screaming. He grabbed his arm as it began to blacken and shrivel. The black bled up his arm like ink, spreading slowly past the elbow. “There is nothing we can do for him.” Menden said sadly. “He will be dead in moments. Such is the price of the ignorant.” He sighed. “I was saying that someone will have to pick it up, but not just anyone.” “Who?” Dallar asked, knowing the answer. “You.” Menden answered in a similar fashion. “What?” Anamira demanded. “You just saw what happened to anyone who touches it, and you want to do the same? I say we leave it here and forget about it. This whole journey has been a fools voyage.” “No.” Dallar said simply. “I won’t let any of this be in vain. I don’t know what this is, or what it does, but I know we can’t let it fall into the wrong hands.” He stepped forward. “The three of four, huh?” Menden nodded. “Third of the four Forces is Water, its bodily counterpart is Blood.” Dallar nodded in acceptance. “Very well. Let’s get this over with.” Without hesitating he picked up the orb. Pain shot through him. He felt like he was on fire. A roar filled the temple and he looked to see something rise out of the dying body of Isaer Tsilnar; an ethereal form, a shadow. The shadow came to Dallar, went within him. AT LAST. * * * * * * * * Dallar was vaguely aware of seeing his fingers begin to blacken before he was thrust into a void. There was no ground or sky, no up or down. There only was. A light seemed to dance around him, though strangely unilluminating. The ethereal form was before him now. It was like a mist, ever shifting, shape only holding true in the center. Dallar thought it looked vaguely humanoid. DO NOT STRUGGLE. I HAVE YOUR BODY. YOU MUST RELINQUISH YOUR HOLD ON IT. The voice seemed to come both from outside and within his own head. It was a loud, if soothing voice. A voice that made Dallar want to obey. He felt the void begin to falter, shuddering. “No!” He denied. “I…” he struggled to form the words, fighting back the forced peace, the soothing words. “I will not give in.” YOU ARE IGNORANT. YOU KNOW NOT OF WHAT YOU HOLD IN YOUR HAND. LET ME SHOW YOU THE REWARD FOR GIVING UP. Dallar was sitting in the private room of Nil Sero, who poured him another glass of wine. “Remembering the good days,” Nil toasted. “And in bringing more to come.” They drank, they talked, they laughed. He was the leader of the Deathseekers now, what remained of them. He was resigned to them no longer being what they were. They had been what they had had to be for the war. With no war, they had to be something else. Some would have called them mercenaries, and Dallar supposed that they were. But he made sure everyone knew that the Deathseekers could refuse any contract, could drop any contract at any time, if they felt their purpose malevolent. They were used mostly to guard caravans or cargo ships from any pirate attacks. Time shifted forward. He sat upon the throne of Arlantin as King Arlantinus VIII. He hated the name, and preferred to be called Dallar in private. Menden Atal stood at his side as his advisor and friend. He watched, ever aware of his crown due to its weight pressing against his brow, as all the Lords who had attempted a coup were hanged. He saw to the needs of the people, and was often seen working with them. He was loved and respected, for he showed love and respect for them and their lands. And peace remained, the land flourished, the civilization grew. Science and religion worked in unison to bring them closer toward the utopia they had once had thousands of years ago. Anamira was at his side, the new Matron of the church, and his Queen. His son Jasal and his daughter Kyla playing in the palace gardens. He lay upon his bed, old and withered. What left of his hair white. His son wore the crown now, and Dallar knew the land and the people were in good hands. He smiled as he closed his eyes one final time to find his wife on the other side. Dallar gasped. He was back in the void, the apparition still hovering before him. In his hands the orb felt heavy. ALL THAT AWAITS YOU IF YOU GIVE UP. LIFE. HAPPINESS. PEACE. DO YOU NOT WANT THIS? Dallar did not answer. It had all felt so real, as if he had lived and died in the space of one moment. Could he have it? Was it possible? He was losing his grip on reality. He no longer knew which way to turn, for all paths seemed to intersect, to overlap in dizzying patterns. He should just give up. If what he had seen would happen, he should give up. No. He got to his feet, just realizing he had fallen to his knees, There seemed to be an invisible floor, but Dallar felt weightless, the void shifting and spinning around him maddeningly. Still, he stood and clutched the orb tighter. WHY DO YOU FIGHT THIS? IT IS FUTILE. YOUR ACCEPTENCE IS UNEEDED, BUT OFFERED. WHY REFUSE? DO YOU WISH TO SEE WHAT WILL COME TO BE IF YOU DO NOT GIVE UP, AND SOMEHOW DEFEAT ME? DO YOU WISH TO SEE THE DARKNESS YOU WILL BRING? Pain seared his core and the void vanished. He saw from a birds view, his body limp and lifeless, laying abandoned. He saw Nil Sero standing with the last of the Deathseekers on what would become a battlefield. Noble soldiers on the other side outnumbered the Deathseekers twenty to one. Nil raised his battle axes in the air and lead the charge. Nil lay dead, surrounded by allies and enemies alike, axes broken beside him. All dead. He saw the land split into two separate nations. He saw an unknown village attacked and torched like Sted. A young boy huddled, hidden, alone, weeping as ash fell like snow. He saw man walking a path made of bones, sword dripping with the blood of thousands. His long dark hair hid his face from view, but Dallar saw the red eyes. The eyes of the Tinnarnon line. Then he saw a blinding golden light. In the center of that light was a figure. Small. A child. But Dallar knew this was no innocent child. The power it held rivaled that of the Gods themselves. It was the destroyer. It would break the world, and burn it into ash. It was the end. Dallar was on his back. The pain did not subside this time. He could not feel his hand anymore. Only by looking at it did he know he still held the orb. He struggled to his feet again. Was it true? Were those the outcomes of this choice? Did the survival of the entire world rest on him? It would be so easy to give up, to let go. So easy. If he could trust this spirit. Could he? Trust. That had been his Deathseeker name. Because he had an unnatural gift to tell if he could trust someone or not. It wasn’t perfect, but it was very good. DO YOU WISH TO BRING THE END? “The end comes for everything.” He breathed. He struggled to remember what he had seen. Towards the end, right after the destroyer. He had seen two beacons, one of light, one of dark. Slowly the dark beacon turned light and the two merged and rose to challenge the destroyer. He smiled. “I think you missed something.” Dallar grunted. I MISSED NOTHING. YOU WILL BRING THE END, OR THE EVERLASTING. “Someone challenges the end.” Dallar explained. “We don’t know what the outcome will be, but as long as there is a chance, hope is not gone.” YOU WOULD PUT FAITH IN ANOTHER? “Why not? Everyone seems to be putting faith in me.” He chuckled. “As long as there is a chance, I won’t give up. I did that once already. I won’t do it again.” FOOL! DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM? I AM- “I don’t care if you’re Saevor himself! Never again!” STUBBORN MORTAL. THEN I SHALL TAKE THE TELLOR BY FORCE! The shadow rushed forward and enveloped him. He was suddenly back in the real world, in the temple. The others crowded around uncertainly. He quickly found out he had no control. His arm raised of its own accord until it was pointing the orb up at the ceiling. His mouth opened, but it was not his voice that spoke. DIE! The entire temple began to shake. Blocks fell from above, nearly crushing them. Menden grabbed Dallars shoulder. “No!” he shouted. Dallars other hand swung out and knocked Menden away. He tried to stop it all, but he had no control. He could only watch helplessly as they were all buried. “Dallar!” came Anamira’s plea. It awoke something he had never experienced before. He let out his own cry of despair, surprised to hear it. He found that he had control of his head. IMPOSSIBLE He gritted his teeth, keeping his hold and pushing to gain more control. They fought for his body. Dallar had surprised the spirit, and gained a quick foothold, but it was still a struggle like none he had ever known. He soon found his feet moving by his direction, then his left arm. Only one arm left. It was the hardest. Dallar felt as if he was pushing against a solid stone wall. The temple shook alarmingly, and a great chunk of stone fell a foot away from Anamira. Dallar felt a surge, and pulled his arm down. “NO!” They yelled in unison. The temple resumed its still rest, dust cascading down on them. Dallar let out a breath of relief, leaning against the plinth. The pain was unlike anything before. He felt as if his soul was being ripped out. His body seized up, and something burst out of his back. A blue light enveloped and blinded him. He screamed, but could not hear it over the scream of the spirit. It seemed eternal. He was blind and deaf, only pain remained. Then the light dispersed, and the ever familiar darkness returned. * * * * * * * * Dallar felt a sharp pain in his ribs. His head felt stuffy. He opened his eyes to find light once again. Menden, of course. Him and his balls of fire. Dallar found himself bent over the plinth, head hanging over the side, causing blood to gather and cause his stuffy lightheadedness. The pain in his ribs was quickly explained as he pulled away and felt the pressure relieved. They should round those edges off. He shuffled his way to the others who were relaxing and tending wounds. They looked twice as bad has he felt, which made him wonder how he looked. They were covered in dust and ash and blood from cuts due to the debris. He smiled and wiped blood from Anamiras forehead, revealing the cut across her brow. The chain of her Purveyor circlet was broken, and the triple crescent clover thing was gone. When had that happened. She frowned at his hand where the orb was still clutched. “Throw it away.” She said. He raised an eyebrow. “Why?” She shifted uncomfortably. “I don’t like it. Throw it away.” “He can’t.” Menden interrupted. “If he casts it aside now that it is off its pedestal, anyone can pick it up with a cloth if they came across it. We need to take it somewhere safe.” “Why did I have to take it?” Dallar asked. “If I was the only one who could remove it, would it not have been better to leave it?” “No.” Menden shook his head. “Knowing Nightheart, she planned for just that. Hoped for it. She will have blood from Vidan and be able to take it that way.” “So where do we take it?” Dallar asked. “I’m not sure.” Menden said irritated. “We can’t trust it with the Church.” Anamira huffed at that. “Casting it into the sea might be the best option. There’s always a chance it could wash ashore, but not for years. Hundreds, perhaps thousands of years. By that time I should have a place for it.” Dallar and Anamira shared a look before turning it on Menden. “So,” Dallar began nonchalantly. “How old are you again?” Menden snorted. “Everyone get ready, we move out soon.” “Yes,” Dallar agreed. “Let’s get away from this place before the trees decide they liked the taste of human.” It was not a joke, and no one laughed. Dallar bent down and ripped a piece of his coat off and wrapped the orb in it. He looked sadly at his hand, the middle three fingers black and shriveled. He would not be able to wield his sword with that hand again. He went to Isaer, who had a makeshift sling holding his dead arm. Tears bled out of his eyes, and he did not bother hiding the fact. He kneeled down and placed a hand on Isaer’s good shoulder. He turned to see his brother Teral walking over. Teral kneeled as well and they all shared a silent look that told each other they had all experienced the possession. They both helped Isaer up the stairs as the survivors of the voyage made their way up the stairs. It seemed to take much less time going up than down, strangely enough, and before too long, they were at the open door. They walked down the tunnel toward the light at the end. The light seemed too bright to Dallar. It was confirmed when the exited the tunnel to find the sun at its zenith, easily shining down on them through the twisted branches above. “How much time passed in there?” Dallar asked. “I’d say at least a day.” Menden answered. The news sank in, but did not do much to hamper anyone’s already gloomy moods. Dallar sighed and shook his head. “Let’s just get out of here.” “Why in such a hurry to leave?” Suddenly they were surrounded by soldiers in blue and silver armor, the triple crescent clover of the Church painted gold on their breasts. Bows and swords were ready. There was no escape. “What’s going on?” Dallar demanded, left hand going for his sword strapped to his left hip. He would never be able to get it out in time like that. “Purveyor.” The head Guardian said. Dallar turned wide unbelieving eyes upon Anamira, who would not meet them. She looked away and walked to the guards, turning to face them all. “No.” Menden breathed. He would still be too weak to be of any use yet. Everything was stacked against them. It was over. She had betrayed him. He did not relent his gaze from her, though she refused to look at him. “Followers of the Church, come.” Anamira ordered. Teral Tsilnar and Kial Asondar looked at each other uncertainly, then turned to Sorine Cucil, who seemed to be struggling with herself. Anamira’s tone became authoritative. “Sorine.” No response. “Obey, Adherent!”
  7. Well, sorry, but you all are going to have a wait on your hands now. I have a lot to write up still. I said take your time. >.>
  8. VI The Truth of Lies Cast in iron Cast aside Unsevered binds And severed ties Never sleeping Ever dreaming Forcing drowning Easily swimming Deep in blood Blood deep Reddened eyes Eyes of red Shadowed past Past shadows Fear of life Life of fear Shunned by love Shunning love Ending destiny A destined end Dalar’anol by Kylanifer circa 1291 SR 26 Summer, 1290 SR His entire body ached. Even as he stood and surveyed his surroundings, he was unaware that it was no longer night. Dust rose with him and caused him to cough violently. Looking down, he saw that the dust covered his entire body. It was a strange grey color and seemed thicker than it should have. He took a step and a cloud puffed up. Then he understood why this was called the Land of Ash. He looked around for the ship and the others. Skeletal trees surrounded him, bent and twisted as if undergoing extreme torture. There was no grass, no green, no running streams that he could see or hear. Despite the desolate trees, the land was completely barren as far as Dallar could see. And he could not see the ship, or anyone for that matter. “Anamira!” He began shouting, Which way was the sea? He could not tell. Any way could lead him in the wrong direction and he would never know it until it was too late. “Ana!” A ferocious hacking drew Dallars attention behind him. Someone leaned against one of those twisted trees, but Dallar could not see them clearly enough to tell who they were. “Anamira?” Teral Tsilnar turned, still coughing slightly. “Disappointed?” He asked sarcastically. Dallar ignored the quip. He had to find her. Something stirred within him. Something unknown. Ever since he had shared that first kiss with her… He shook his head. He would not let anything happen to her. “I’m guessing you haven’t seen anyone else either.” Teral said. It was not a question. “I have to find Sorine.” Teral’s anxiety made Dallar feel for him. They were brothers in this cause, as all men were. “We’ll find them both.” Dallar promised, refusing his own doubts. ‘What happened, anyway? I remember holding onto the rail, holding her hand, and then…I woke up buried in ash.” Dallar just shook his head. He was as ignorant as Teral in what had transpired. What had happened that night, the ship flying, it all waved in his memory like a dream. But he was suddenly hit with the memory of what Sorine had told him about the shadow behind Teral’s eyes. Studying the man carefully, he saw no hints of anything untoward. No shadow, no mystery. The Adherent must have simply imagined it. Relationships were stressful. They picked a direction and began moving, each man shouting the name of his woman. It wasn’t long before voices were shouted in return. Rushing forward toward the sound, they came to a clearing, the sight of which making them stop and gasp. Menden Atal stood like a sentinel, gazing out into that twisted forest, the rest of the weary crew, including Anamira and Sorine gathered around. The Asteri stood apart, looking blankly at the ship. The ship itself was split in two, almost at the direct center of the ship, the back half just held to the front half by a few hundred stubborn planks. The back half also dangled slightly over the edge of the land. Dallar grew dizzy at how far they had been thrown. How had they survived? “How are the Asteri holding up?” Dallar asked when he approached Menden and the others. Menden did not answer, instead Anamira did. “Better than you would expect. I think.” She frowned. “They are so hard to gauge emotionally.” Dallar looked back at the Pack. Kylan turned his head softly and Dallar saw all he needed to in those eyes. “It is like they lost a piece of themselves, of their home. Their sadness is almost human.” Menden’s growl made Dallar start. “Human. Such a trite description.” “So where are we?” Dallar changed gears quickly. Menden sighed. “We are back where we started.” Before anyone could question this, Menden continued. “This is Avanit Nol. Or it was Avanit Nol. Grass grew thick, tress towered to the stars, and people thrived. We went too far in the war. If anything is proof of that, this land is. Once called Wystwrn*, now aptly named the Land of Ash.” He sighed. “To answer your question: we’re home.” Dallar tried to understand what had been said. “What war? Not the Noble War, that was in Arlantin.” Menden only sighed again. A thought struck Dallar. “How old are you?” Menden gave Dallar a wooden stare. “Let’s get moving. We will have to be quick to reach Therbor before sunpast.” * Wystwrn (wist-WERN)
  9. Vote Count Thorum (4): False, Play3r, Meesh, Wombat Aust (1): Thorum 5 to lynch.
  10. It is now Day 6. With 8 alive it takes 5 to Lynch. No set Deadline right now. Take your time, please. (Not too long, of course.) Sorry everyone. It's hard to juggle both the story and the game without sacrificing a bit of one for the other.
  11. A wave crashed into the ship and showered Dallar’s already drenched form as he struggled to tighten the ropes holding the sail to the foremast. The Godpass was well named, for only those truly blessed by the Three could ever hope to survive those rapids. After securing the sail, Dallar slid down the rope used for fast escape for anyone up there in case of storms. Or in case they were traveling the Godpass. “Are you insane?” Anamira yelled over the waves. Dallar looked up at the drop he had slid, blinking as another wave sent another shower over him. “I’m not worried,” he yelled back. “We have a Purveyor on board.” She shot him a frown to tell him how funny she found that. “How much further is it?” Anamira shouted. “Don’t know.” Dallar answered, looking at the strained form of Menden Atal. He was once again at the fore of the ship, one hand cast down, a blue thread disappearing over the side of the ship and into the water; the other hand waving behind him clutching a white thread that whipped back and forth behind the sails as if directing the winds themselves. Two Asteri worked the wheel, struggling to keep the course straight. Straight was important, because they were surrounded by jutting rocks, some big some small, creating the dangerous walls of Godpass. Waves and walls worked together to assure any ships demise. Any ship but this one. Dallar glanced at the giant ball of fire that Menden had created for light this night. It still hovered up there, moving with the ship. A constant reminder that there were powers and forces in this world far beyond humans. Even the might of Arlantin paled in comparison. So much for the invincible empire. Then Dallar saw the true reason it was called Godpass. Up ahead loomed the Land of Ash, hundreds of feet above the water. It was not just above sea level, Dallar could see the cragged bottom of the land. If there was anything holding the land up, Dallar could not see it. Floating. Dallar thought he had seen it all, but that was something all together different. Then it hit him. He ran to Menden, shouting, “How do you plan on making that?” “We will fly.” Came Menden’s strained shout. Fly? “Now!” Menden shouted again, his voice booming in Dallars ears. He turned and found two Asteri hacking at the main mast, the mast twice as big as the others. Something was cut free and the mast split in half. Dallar could only stare as the two halves of the mast smashed through the railing of the port and starboard, crashing into the deck. The mast halves bounced slightly before coming to rest on the deck. The sail billowed out beside the ship. Like wings, Dallar thought. Dallar turned back to Menden, who used both hands to rip up a blue rope that created an enormous wave for them to ride. Then he snapped his hands out and grabbed two white ropes, whipping them back. Air caught the wing masts and the ship lurched up. Menden began twirling his hands, whipping the ropes again and again to give more air to those masts. Dallar was surprised they did not lift up and become useless, but saw that the Asteri had locked them in place with metal saddles. Dallar made his way back, along the port railing, looking down to see them still riding the enormous wave, rising higher and higher. He glanced at the floating Land of Ash. It would be close. He made it to the aft and saw that the rudder was still deep within the water, the ship on an incline. Menden stopped whipping, and held the ropes still, trying to pull and lift at the same time, the other ends of the ropes connecting to the wingmasts. Menden was using himself as a fulcrum to pull the ship up into the sky. The strain had to be terrible. Dallar thought he heard a roar right before the ship jumped off the wave and…continued rising on an incline heading for the surface of the land. “Everyone secure yourselves!” Dallar ordered. No one questioned. Following his own advice Dallar wrapped his arm around the railing. He instinctively knew that any kind of strap would end up in a severed limb from the impact. Hopefully most of the crew would not be thrown far. Dallar braced himself, still watching the keel of the ship as much as he could. Land appeared underneath. They had made it. Dallar heard a loud sound, and knew the keel had hit land, but knew nothing else as he began to fly, light blinking out and leaving only darkness.
  12. You are waiting on me. i need to write up the scene. but i need to get home first. still another 5 hours away.
  13. The flames threatened to burn his face as Dallar peered into his brothers face as it was engulfed on the pyre. They did not need to worry about the ship catching fire, as the wood the Asteri used for it could not burn. Another time Dallar would contemplate the insignificant idea that the wood was then not wood if it could not burn. Menden said the Plea. The words were hollow to Dallar. Ash, Winds, Tides, Land. They were like Menden said, uncaring. What good was the Plea, then? Was there someone out there, were the Gods listening, debating whether or not to accept? Did it matter? Dallar went to Anamira. “I recently gave some relationship advice to someone.” He said. “Oh really?” Anamira said surprised. “You giving advice on relationships? That I would like to hear.” Dallar did not take to her baiting. “I’ve decided to take my own advice.” “What are you-“ She was forced to stop talking as her lips were otherwise engaged. Dallar broke the kiss. “I’m tired of this ceaseless dance, Anamira.” Anamira tried to regain her composure. “Dancing.” She breathed. “Too much effort, I always thought.” He smiled. “I’m not the man you deserve, but I’ll do my best.” “Rather improper during a funeral, don’t you think?” She asked, motioning at the pyre. “Perhaps. But I think Vidan would have approved, considering his letter.” “That man would have.” Anamira said, smiling. Dallar smiled back and went to continue paying his respects. Menden was at her side suddenly. “Dallar has a task to perform, Anamira.” “Yes, he told me. The fate of the world.” Menden locked eyes with her. “He loves you, Anamira. And I know you love him. I know about other things besides love, too.” Anamira tried to pull away from him, but she could not break eye contact. “He’s just beginning to heal. Don’t break him.” “What are you accusing me of?” Anamira demanded. Menden just looked into her eyes. “Don’t break him.” He repeated before finally leaving her to her thoughts.
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