13th Chapter of IW Season 2.
Reduced to Rubble Edit
Sha'Tive/Within Rito's mind/Dawn 6
"You have much to learn if you believe that the mere fact that Gorons will die in the near future will benefit you. Your hunt for wealth by harvesting the hide of Gorons will be hitting a standstill as long as I still breathe. I already have my influence covering much of this land, and as time goes by, I claim more and more for myself. Think of me as a virus, if you will; They will spread as long as their "nucleus" remains intact. Those whom are dead will join the shambling gait of the others, and their thirst for blood will guarantee the joining of those around them. No element nor steel can stop them; no matter the species...when under my influence, you will more quickly be dissected than to cut down our numbers. As the numbers of the Goron population fall, my power will rise, and soon, the bodies will pile high enough to even snatch you from the skies, and you will join us, like all the rest. We are an unstoppable force, and have yet to come across an immovable object."
"You could also ignore all I have said, and could tell your "Master" of the "good" news...it would be best if you don't tell him what you've learned. He will die ignorant of the danger, and will not see it coming. Suprise is always the greatest thing to give someone in their last moments. It leaves a nice look about their mutilated faces as rigomortis takes hold and they join the ranks. It will be a fitting end for him. His death will grant him the ability to change the world for the better from beyond the grave. Always something to consider, bird-man."
Ayala/Hyrule Castle/Morning 6
Ayala finally made it to the meeting room just as everyone else was starting to leave. "[Ok what did I miss?]"
"Well this saves us the trouble of finding her. [Nothing just planning stuff. This one wants your help getting though the forest. Kokage's being a problem again I guess.]" Seishi said pointing back to Feline.
"[Oh cool lets go, it's been forever since I've seen Kokage. Oh speaking of which I think I saw Koro on my way here.]"
"[You're not going anyway!]" Laynnei boomed as she grabbed her daughter by the arm and started dragging her out of the room. "[You're mind is still in pieces and I'm not about to let you go out and get yourself killed before I fix it.]"
Seishi turned to Phoenix after the two had made it a ways down the hall, "if everyone's done here you and me should follow those two. It's high time you and Laynnei both told me everything."
"Are you sure you want to do that with Ayala there?"
"No, but I'm pretty sure Lay need's to put her to sleep to fix what ever the hell the little girl did to herself so it doesn't matter. Besides if she's distracted with all that the psychic crap I'll have a better shot at winning this fight.
"So you're not going to tell her then."
"She has the right to know, and hell its taking all of my will power to keep me from decking you for not telling me. But when push comes to shove I'm her father. Being a hypocrite to protect your kids is part of job."
"Well Seishi, let it never be said that anger management hasn't done wonders for you. Well that and old age."
"Oh cute you crack jokes now. Lets go. The rest of you stay here, take off, or get some rest. This is private."
The Rito/Above Castle Town/Dawn 6
Without warning, the prick in his mind returned in full force. First, just nudging its way through, but steadily growing stronger until it burst through and, once again, he could hear the voice speaking in his head. His vision blurred, dazing into bright flashes every few seconds, and pink dominated his mind. He screamed without realizing he was doing it, and brought his wings up to his head in an attempt to cover his ears.
It was hard to concentrate on anything being said. He was foolish? Blood? He was struck with visions of the dead rising, soulless, lifeless. The pink woman flashed again before his eyes, laughing maniacally.
"It would be best if you don't tell him what you've learned. He will die ignorant of the danger, and will not see it coming."
The Rito burst forth back into consciousness, only to find that he was mere seconds away from crashing into the ground. He righted himself quickly, desperately flapping his wings to get enough lift to avoid the collision. He flapped, flapped, flapped...
He never felt the initial impact. After hitting the ground, his body flew like a ragdoll into a stone building, knocking him unconscious. As he gently fell asleep, one phrase kept reappearing into his mind.
"He will die. He will die. He will die...He wi..ll di..."
[b]The Rito/Many Years Earlier/A Shaman's Hut[/b]
The Rito clawed at the chain around his neck, knowing that any attempt at taking it off would be futile. Eddard was right not to trust him, though, they both knew that any chance the Rito had to escape would be acted upon in full force. Violently, he felt the tug again of the leash as Eddard sped his pace towards a lone hut in the middle of nowhere. The Rito had no idea where he was being taken, he just prayed that it was to some sort of executioner. While he did not remember anything from before a few months previous, he knew wholeheartedly that his life could not have been this bad.
Finally, they entered the hut to see an old man standing over a cauldron whispering words he could not understand. No pleasantries were exchanged.
[color=white][hl=blue]"Is it ready?"[/hl][/color]
"Yes, yes," the old man rasped, we are missing but one ingredient. Eddard nodded and violently grabbed the Rito's wrist before cutting a smaller vein. He stored the blood in a vial before doing the same thing to his own wrist. Eddard handed the man the vial, smiling too deeply for a man such as he.
"And the payment?" Eddard reached into his pockets, but instead of pulling out rupees, he displayed some sort of strange mushroom. The old man took it and sniffed at it, then proceeding to smile and store it away. "Very well."
The old man poured the blood from each man into the cauldron before reaching a potion down into the mix to scoop out. "Here we are, if you each drink exactly half of this, you shall achieve the connection. Your minds shall be forever linked to eachother, each with equal control of eachother."
The Rito received it first. He gulped loudly, trying to get his mind off the awful tasting concoction. But before half way, Eddard snatched the bottle out of his hand. [color=white][hl=blue]"I'd prefer if I had more influence in the matter,"[/hl][/color] he smiled at the man. Eddard leaned his head back and chugged the entire mixture in two gulps. The Rito didn't know it at the time, but his fate had just been sealed to the man he hated most in the world.
IC: Felina - Hyrule Castle - dawn 6
As most of the group set out on the task of the rescue mission Ayala had finally made it to the castle.
With Seishi informing her of the mission to the forest Felina was relieved by her enthusiasm but also a little confused as to why she was talking in old Hylian. Although she wasn't totally fluent in speaking the language, she understood it well enough to get most of what Ayala and Seishi were saying. However before anything more could be planned Laynnei interupted, carting Ayala off while saying something about her mind being fragmented.
As Seishi and Phoenix followed her into another room Felina sighed and found a secluded corner to lay down. She hadn't gotten a good nights sleep since her and Polaris had set out for Snowpeak, now would be a good time to try and get a little rest while Ayala got her mind patched back together.
???/Hyrule Castle Roof/Dawn 6
“Soooooooooooooooouuuuuuuuurce.” the construct whispered hoarsly.
The stranger stepped cautiously into the icy cavern, wary of another attack, and began to circle the creature.
"Source?" he echoed, moving slowly, deliberately, not wanting to spook the creature. "Do you mean the orb crafted by the Light Mage, Quentin Sol?" he questioned, now stopping to stand in front of it.
The construct did not reply.
"No matter, I'm sure that's what you mean. Well I'm sorry to be the bearer of obvious news, but it seems 'source' has gone missing, hasn't it? Leaving you a rather vulnerable creature."
The stranger smiled now, leaning in close as if to inspect the creature. "That vulnerability means it wouldn't be too hard for some fiend to override your core protocols, make you compliant to his demands.He began to circle the construct again.
"Who is your master?" the stranger demanded.
The construct remained silent.
"I said who is your master? Reply!"
"Noooooooone." The golem said in monotone.
The stranger nodded, as if confirming what he already knew.
"None? So no one has imprinted themselves upon you yet? Then you're unseeded, empty, and there's nothing to prevent any random passer-by from declaring themselves your director. We wouldn't want that, would we?"
Stopping in front of the creature again, he clapped his hands together, excited.
"Then let us rectify that situation!" his voice suddenly booming.
"I, Rhendil Hurst, officially declare myself Director of Shell 4, designation Hikaru. Every command issued shall be obeyed until further notice."
The light emitting from Hikaru's eyes shifted from yellow to a bright forest green, his whole eye engulfed in the glow.
"So who, then, is your master?"
Hikaru said nothing.
"Who is your master? Reply!"
Seishi/Hyrule Castle/Morning 6
"Ok tell me everything." Seishi said as calmly as he could be expected two as he and Phoenix entered the room where Laynnei was working on their unconscious daughter to fix the damage done by he foolish attempt to psychically attack the Twili Commander.
Laynnei was quick to protest with an irritated sigh, "must we do this here and now. I am busy you know and do you really want to risk Ayala waking up and find out or even my thoughts slipping into her mind."
"We'll worry about that if it happens. Besides she'll find out eventually. Now about this whole Taden thing."
"Fine though whole story. That girl form earlier is Lynn Annei, she's a shiekah that was originally tasked to find and kill Kinslayer, along with Kae Brysies."
"You sent babies to fight Kinslayer!"
"I sent elite warriors to fight Kinslayer!" Phoenix yelled slightly enraged by his old friend's unjust criticism. "The only Light Warrior that had show up here at that point was Senshi and I knew he I couldn't use him for the mission. Yes they're young most of the Light Warriors were when they started, and if I remember you were even younger then them when you enlisted. This is a Warrior Seishi, not another grudge match with evil wizards and Dark Warriors. Sometimes I have to make decisions that I normally would want to. You use to understand things like that."
"Oh I understand them, I just don't like to except them. Besides I always hoped at the Imprisoning War would be the last time we'd be in a situation like this again."
"Dear every soldier from every war hopes there wont be another after the one they thought. It's why most of you fight in the first place, so the next generation wont have to. Well aside from the few crazy ones. Since we're being open and honest today I'll admit the only reason I tolerate the lot of you and your constant battles is because that's your motivation." Seishi and Phoenix both just stared at Laynnei in complete shock. Sure after all these years they both knew her well enough to know why, despite her protests, she would aid the Light Warriors and even allow her children to join there ranks, but for her to admit it was a whole another story. Laynnei finally grew tired of their gawking and put things back on track, "we talking about the Hothnight girl."
"Right, sorry. 'Hothnight girl," never though I'd here that phrase. Back to Lynn, believe it or not we realize those kids were outclassed. More because by the time they both got to the castle Kae had become a Scion and they joined up with Darrel, Polaris, a good twili golem, and oddly enough Senshi. We were also attacked by an Ice Mage that leveled half the city."
"Oh yeah I met that guy. I wasn't really impressed until he did, well that," Seishi point of the window to the wintry waist land that had consumed the city.
"Yah well it was now pretty damn apparent this was going to be another Light vs Dark Warrior battle Lynn was going to need more then your basic Shiekah skills. So we let her into the vault figuring she could use one of the artifacts in there, be it one of your brothers or the passed Light Warriors. Admittedly there were some less then ideal items in there should could have pick such as Kima and Tempests coins but the average person can't use things like that. Oh right, Laynnei what the hell is your son up to. He's stolen the Star and Winged Light coins and probably the Storm Coin as well. Actually on second thought I hope he was the one that stole the storm coin, but there's no excuse for him taking Star."
"Your guess is as good as mine, though I suppose it has something to do with saving that Annei girl, or perhaps that child you stuck with him."
"We'll get that believe me we'll get to that. Just as you want answers about Taden, I this problem with Senshi dealt with. Back the Taden thing, so out of this huge vault of weapons Lynn takes a dusty old cloak which guess must have been Taden's. To be honest I don't even know how it got there. You guess what happened next, some how the damn thing possessed her. Most of use felt it right away and came running. A after a half hour with everyone at each others throats we finally managed to get her to put the cloak back and take and she took the Biggoron Sword instead. We hoped that would fix the problem, clearly it didn't."
"Well why didn't you just k-"
Laynnei cut Seishi off mid sentence, "If we could please pause this little chat just for a moment. I'm done and Ayala is waking up now."
Ayala came out and sat up right, "Why is everyone here?"
"And we were worried about you."
"Plus we needed your mother's inputs."
"And since she was here healing you."
"We're hear as well."
"Ok that sounded rehearsed, what's really going on."
"Nothing, those two just share a brain this time." Laynnei sigh to hide her amusement as Seishi and Phoenix both put on a **** eating grin over her comment.
"Now get going, Syz-err... Ryuna's descendant wanted your help dealing with Kokage."
"And be careful, Kokage's kind of lost his mind."
Ayala just shrugged off Phoenix's warning. To her Kokage was the same as her older brother and she knew he'd never hurt her. She was about to burst out of the the room excited at the chance to see Kokage again and met the descendant of her old friend when her mother called out to stop her. "Hold on little missy. You've been running around fight for over a day with out rest. That power of your my mitigate some of your need to sleep but you still need food. Go eat something before you go gallivanted through that woods."
"Yes mother..." Ayala rolled her eyes before taking off.
Phoenix couldn't help but laugh, "You know Laynnei, appearances aside she's not a little girl anymore. I think she can remember things like when to eat without you telling her."
"I'm her mother, it's my natural right to treat my children like they are children until my dieing day thank you."
"Give up, I did a long time ago."
IC: Felina - Hyrule Castle - Morning 6
Fidgetting a little in her seat Felina slowly opened her eyes back up. She was uncertain of how much time had passed, but felt this was all the sleep she could afford to get at the moment. Glancing at the room the others had gone in, she realized Ayala had already gone. Getting up she glanced around the room and finally spotted Ayala at the other end of a nearby hall loading up on food and supplies.
Walking over Felina couldn't help but feel her stomach tighten at the sight of food. "Oh gods, I could eat just about anything in this place right now..." she thought to herself.
"I vote for a rabbit!" the coyote piped in.
"No way! Fish is just the thing to get you ready for some adventuring." the dolphin interupted.
"Bah. Nothing is quite a delectable in the morning as a freshly caught rat." the owl spoke in an almost condescending tone.
"... No, just no." Felina sighed to herself as she plucked some kind of small pastry from Ayala, surprising her a little.
"Hi, I'm Felina Xiphias. I don't know if your parents filled you in yet, but I'm about to leave on a mission to snare the materials we need to make a new special sword to deal with some of our current problems. I need to head to the Lost Woods so I thought you might be able to help me deal with Kokage. Care to lend a hand?" Felina spoke in an almost rushed tone as she began to down the pastry.
Ayala/Pantry Raid/Morning 6
"Hey that was mind, pastry thief." Ayala cried jokingly the pulled another identical to eat one out of the pile of food she'd horded. She began throwing it all in a leather bag as Feline introduced herself.
"Hi, I'm Felina Xiphias. I don't know if your parents filled you in yet, but I'm about to leave on a mission to snare the materials we need to make a new special sword to deal with some of our current problems. I need to head to the Lost Woods so I thought you might be able to help me deal with Kokage. Care to lend a hand?"
"Mhm I heard a bit about it, though I think we need to establish some ground rules namely that pastry theft will for now on be considered a capital offense. Ok with that out of the way," Ayala tied off the bag and held it up so Oberon could store it away as she does with countless other items, "let's go."
Ayala started to head out of the pantry but suddenly stop as a though popped into her head. "Wait a second, there's something I have to know. My dad told me your Ryuna's descendant, and I know the fact that you're Hylian should answer this but I have to ask. Did she ever get back together with my cousin after that whole marriage trick thing?"
[b]Vykos/Castle Town/Dawn 6[/b]
While the majority of the fighting was over, Vykos was still bitter about missing most of the fun. This would prove to be a satisfactory replacement.
A few notable individuals stood out amongst the crowd. Some were versed in Dark Artes here. Nothing he studied closely, but things he knew could cause trouble later on if they weren't dealt with.
As a necromancer, often he could will his minions to gravitate toward certain targets. Focusing fire on the leaders would be logical if he had more bodies to throw away, but thanks to the chaos of events around him they were weakened and reduced in number.
He continued to lob clouds of green and orange gas into enemy forces. By attempting to cull the herd a bit, he intended to divide them into two or three partitions, advancing his army into weak points of the line.
If they didn't notice him yet, he'd use his cover as a further benefit. And he was fairly well-protected by those numbers.
Seishi/Hyrule Castle/Morning 6
"Ok, so why the hell didn't you just kill her?" Seishi continued the conversation now that Ayala was out of ear shot.
"The same reason you didn't kill Senshi the when he became possessed. The same reason we never kill you when your Ma took over."
"This isn't the same thing!" Seishi barked, refusing to except Phoenix response.
"Yes it is," Laynnei chimed in completely dismissing her husbands outburst. "In fact I'd say it's almost identical to what happened to Senshi. I'm fairly certain he realize it too which could explain some of his actions as of late."
"I doubt that's the whole story in his case, regardless if Senshi can realize Lynn needs to be saved not killed then why can't you Seishi?"
"Oh please, you have no right to act high and mighty. The only ones who didn't want to kill that poor girl when this started where the ones that didn't know Hothnight. You've just had more time to think this through."
"That was a knee jerk reaction. Are you telling me you would have thought differently."
"Of course I would have. When have I every thought of a sword of the primary solution to a problem."
"Enough! I get it. We've gotta help the girl, but don't you think we should keep her in a cell or something."
"She'd have to be will for that to work. Have you know of an instance where someone didn't get angry when restrained against there will and they do say anger leads to hate. No we'll just have to let this play out and hope the plan the Light Warriors are working on will work. If it does't then I'm sure our son has a back up plan or three."
"Yeah, and I'm sure we won't like any of them."
"That goes without saying. We are his parents."
"Alright, I'll play along for now, but what happens when this all goes to hell?"
"In that case we'll play it by ear. Now, since we've settled down, can either of you explain to me just what the hell your son is up to. I get he wants to save Lynn, but how the hell does helping the Twili and stealing artifacts do that."
"I'm sure the Medallion have something to do with what ever foolish plan he's come up with. As for joining the Twili, I'm sure you know the reason for that."
"Hell, I really don't want that to be the case. Well can you do anything about it?"
"Doubtful, I haven't been able to locate the girl since they entered the Spirit Temple. I assume she's alive otherwise Senshi wouldn't be in this predicament but I don't know in what state. It would be easier if that idiot wouldn't block off his mind so I could help but he can't stop being himself long enough. I suppose this is just another thing we'll have to let play out. If the girl is lucky Senshi will be able to save her before anything to horrible happens but regardless all of this is your fault."
Phoenix had nothing to say in defense. His mistrust in Senshi is what caused his fears to materialize and in a situation ever worse then he was originally concerned with. He dreaded that he'd have to tell this all to Misha's grandfather. An awkward silence fell over the roomed until Seishi finally spoke up. "What the hell are you two talking about."
"Phoenix assigned a little girl to keep an eye on our son so he wouldn't try and play both sides again. It would seem it backfired horribly and she was probably captured and being used to keep him on there side."
"A kid!" Seishi was a bit shocked and angered. "Look you may have a point with what you said about those Shiekah but throwing an actual child in with the kind of crap the Light Warriors get into."
"Not a child, a teenager. Though I'll admit she's only 14, but she's not just some kid. She special forces trained."
"Wait a second you mean that death squad you had Nahc and Impa put together during the war. You put a 14 year old in that. Damn it Phoenix, I don't care if this is a war there's no excuse for that kind of crap. For that matter why the **** would would think that would make things better."
"Because it means she can hold her own on those mission, and no I don't put kids that young in special forces. She's a special case and we only used her for intel gathering and 'internal affairs.' Trust me I'm not about to throw into spec ops mission or wetworks. Yes 14 may still be a bit young to be tagging along with what ever Senshi gets himself into but I thought it was a necessary risk and its not like Ayala was any older when she started."
"YEAH AND LOOK HOW ****ING WELL THAT WENT! And you know what, there isn't a god damn day that doesn't pass where I don't curse myself for not dragging her ass back home when she took off! I thought you felt the same way! I though we all learned that would shouldn't let kids into these fights anymore!"
"We all regret what happened but her age HAD NOTHING TO DUE WITH IT! Half of the Light Warriors started in there teens so why would we think anything was wrong with Ayala. Even after what happened it never crossed our minds that age had anything to do with it. So no, I'm sorry but I don't relate this to what happened to Ayala. Besides I knew Senshi wouldn't let anything happen to her. Apparently a I was right otherwise we wouldn't be talking about this."
Seishi punch the wall in a attempt to vent his rage leaving a huge crack running through the mason-work.
"We should stop here. I think we've gotten a little off track and besides think everything that needed to be said already has been."
"No, I've got one last question." Laynnei seemed a bit annoyed an worried to here him say that. She knew what he was about to ask had hoped to avoid it in light of her husbands already tempered state."That fish, someone called him a General right and I think his name was Polaris. That sounds familiar but I don't know why. Who is he?"
Phoenix fell silent not sure if he should answer that question. It looked like Laynnei was on the same page with him but both knew they couldn't lie to Seishi again. "Look, if I tell you this you have to promise me you won't kill him."
"You know, you having to say that tells me I should just go kill him now and figure it out later."
"Seishi we are at war, he's on our side and he's a light warrior."
"Alright fine, if its for the sake of winning this war I won't kill him."
"Ok, Polaris may have been the commanding General of the Zora army during the great war." Seishi stood motionless and silent only the veins on his head popping and his ever redding face gave away his thoughts. "Remember you said you wouldn't kill him. I've always known you to be true to your word, Seishi. Seishi? SENSHI!"
"Alright! I said I won't kill him so I won't kill him. Anything short of that is fair game though. Now if you'll excuse me I have a soldier to bury." Seishi stormed off to meet back up with his squad.
"Well, at least that went better then I thought it would." Phoenix sighed as he settled down into a chair behind him.
"He's mellowed out some in his old age."
C: Felina - Hyrule Castle - morning 6
"Hmph... I have no idea what you're talking about." Felina replied with a huff.
"Anyway, we should set out sooner rather than later. With the Twili in mass retreat from this battle their defensive line near the forest should still be disorganized. We can't pass up the opportunity to slip through undetected." Felina spoke, changing the subject.
Without waiting for a reply she started towards the exit, making a waving motion for Ayala to follow.
"I'll fill you in on some of the other important details on the way."
OOC Summary: Felina sets out for the forest
IC: Shato - above castle town ruins - morning 6
Flying high in the sky near castle town, on the back of the Helmorac King, Shato studied the situation as best she could. It was clear the battle was over and that the Hylians had held their ground.
"So they held off defeat for one more day... big deal. It still doesn't change anything, not against our full might." she mused to herself as she glanced towards the desert where the main army was gathered.
Glancing back towards the castle she caught a glimpse of a couple youths leaving. Their clothes didn't seem like the normal uniforms of the Hylian military.
"Hm... one of them is in green... I wonder if it has anything to do with that rumored warrior and that magical superweapon they are suppossedly creating. Might as well follow them and see anything interesting turns up." Shato considered as she instructed the Helmorac King to gain more altitude to avoid detection.
"Don't lose them my pet." she instructed, knowing the large birds sight and tracking instincts would far exceed her own.
[b]Harken Zeiss/Morning 6/Hyrule Castle Town Streets[/b]
The undead mass was being cut down by Eddard, Harken and Tobias. Considering the fight, they weren't doing too bad for themselves, but there were many more materializing from the morning mists, and the normal soldiers of their Hylian ranks were not faring as well as these three leaders. If anything, attrition would be there downfall.
Harken made his way closer to Tobias, cutting down a gibdo in the process.
"I say, Pepperwhistle," he murmured to his erstwhile friend and ally, "that beast of ours would be quite an advantage in this instance, wouldn't you agree? A shame he's supposed to be dead, and no where near us. Perhaps with this Langston fellow we might be able to make for a distraction and have you break away to fetch the armored bloke? I'm really not certain how much longer we can last, as is."
Phoenix/Morning 6/Hyrule Castle Saferoom
Phoenix continued speaking with Laynnei. "Well... either way, we can't hold the castle anymore. We've evacuated everyone else important. All that remains are Seishi's little group, you and me, and a few handful of civilians."
He sighed, glancing at his chair in disgust. "We've lost this place... The people don't hold faith in us, or in the goddesses. We'd only have two options, really. I'm not prepared to take the first, despite what Seishi may think of me given all this. But that... would be to eradicate the heretics to prevent them from spreading seditious intent and rebelling against the Crown. The other option is to take what forces we have and win this damn war to renew their faith in Hylian forces."
He stood up, knocking over the chair behind him. "So, we're moving out, heading to the Redoubt. You're free to join us, if you wish, Laynnei. Or you can return to the Island, it's your choice. I'll have to keep Seishi and your daughter for a while longer, though, and we both know they won't leave while this war is still ongoing, especially with Senshi out there... acting like Senshi. If you're coming, the final caravan will be leaving in twenty minutes. I have to get tell Seishi to get his rabble ready to move, so if you'll excuse me..."
He took off at a measured pace and eventually found Seishi amid his special force group.
"Seishi! Your unit will be mobilizing in fifteen minutes! We're abandoning the Castle and retreating to the Redoubt, and I'll need your boys to provide escort for the caravan. Let's move it!"
[b][color=seagreen]Meado[/color]/Morning 6/Nearby Hyrule Castle[/b]
Meado mounted one of the few horses remaining to the armed forces in Castle Town. He had volunteered to lead the advanced scouts for the caravan. His exhaustion was mounting, but he couldn't sit back and rest while there was work to be done. For Rus' honor, he would continue to work and fight until the General was avenged. It was a personal oath that kept him going.
"[color=seagreen]Alright, Meado. You can do this. Just ride a horse alongside a bunch of carts. No big deal. As long as we don't actually get attacked...[/color]"
He turned his steed to face the three other mounted scouts. He sighed and put on his best 'fearless leader' face. "[color=seagreen]Okay, you three! We've got a pretty easy detail here. Just ride at a distance and keep your eyes open for any hostiles. If you see anything, you need to let the caravan know immediately. Do not engage, we can't afford to lose any horses, and the foot-boys will need our warning to mount a proper defense! Alright? Good. As soon as Commander Phoenix gets here we're moving out. Remember: Three carts, and I want to see all of them reach our destination with all their passengers intact![/color]"
He then gave them a sloppy grin. "[color=seagreen]So, what do you say? Drinks on me when we get there?[/color]"
The other three gave a cheer at this, and then awaited the last few members of the caravan to depart the Castle.
Seishi/Hyrule Castle/Morning 6
"Seishi! Your unit will be mobilizing in fifteen minutes! We're abandoning the Castle and retreating to the Redoubt, and I'll need your boys to provide escort for the caravan. Let's move it!"
"Fifteen minutes, a little sudden don't you think," Seishi asked more confused over the need to rush. "Everyone's been fighting none stop for a day, and I don't think any towns folk have much left in them at either. Don't you think we should give everyone time to rest. Don't get me wrong I can make it happen, I just don't think it'll be an easy trip. But I guess you and me can take care of things in a worse case scenario right."
"Just do me a favor and make sure we have some carriages though," he started heading out to recall his men. "We acquired some other solders in the mix and I'm not sure all of them can still walk." Ayala/Hyrule Castle/Morning 6
Ayala just shrugged at Felina's response, "I"ll never understand why everyone just so irritably when Purin's gets brought up. I know he picked up some of his moms bad habit's but he was still a nice kid."
"I think it had something to do with him having gills and scales where his boy parts are suppose to be." Oberon quickly responded.
"Hey race and physiological compatibility should have nothing to do with true love." Ayal said half joking.
"I'll fill you in on some of the other important details on the way," Felina said as Ayala caught back up.
"Ok, I've already got some of it. I know you guys are trying to make some kind of half Light Sword half Master Sword to fight the Twili. Though I don't understand why you're still going to the trouble. Know that I'm here we have the Sword of Light and we could probably get the Master Sword too if the guy with the key would stop being a jerk."
Summery: Ayala tell Felina what she already knows but doesn't understand why they're going to all the trouble when they already have a Light Sword. In unrelated news I spelt physiological currently the first time with out spell check. This calls for a victory dance.
Seishi/Castle Town/Morning 6
"How's the search coming?" Seishi asked as his after finding his Lt and Sergeant Major.
"We were just about to call it off," Lon responded with grim cynicism. "We were doing fine for a hour or two but everyone we've found in the past twenty minutes was already dead by the time we thawed them out."
Koma piped in, finishing for the Lt, "No point in work the men more just for corpses, besides it'll just depress 'em. So we're callin it quits so they can get some rest."
"Damn it, I was hoping you were having more luck then maybe I could convince Phoenix to hold out for a few more hours."
"Hold out from what?" Koma asked with a slight rise of anger in his voice from not liking where he knew the conversation was going.
"We've evacuating, you've got 15 minutes to round up everyone left and join the caravan. As an added bonus we run to run protection."
"Son of a b****!" Koma yell throwing up his arms in frustration. "What is this, we don't all die in battle so they try and kill us for exhaustion?"
"For the last time this isn't a suicide squad. Look I know this is bull**** and I told Phoenix its bull**** but it's probably not a good idea to stick around here much longer. The Twili may have retreated by they could be regrouping and attack again. If they do that we'll be wiped out and it's not like there's much worth defending left."
The Lt chimed in hoping to bring a bit of obvious logic to light, "it wont do us much better if we all collapse on the way there. The men need sleep, we need sleep, and the people we just broke out of the ice need a hospital."
"I got that Lt thanks. Look we it's not like we have a choice. Beside we'll have carts for people who can't walk so work out a shift schedule so you can all take turns getting a little sleep. The good news is you wont have to put me on it. It's another sunny day so I'll be good for hours. Oh and don't put Ayala on it either. She's around left on another mission."
IC: Felina - castle town - morning 6
"Eh, well it actually leans more towards the Four Sword than the Master Sword. What we're going for is actually a rather subtle but hard to get ability that most swords simply weren't designed to pull off. We need a sword that can forcibly seperate and banish outside souls from host bodies, without actually harming the host or the original soul." Felina replied.
She knew that going into the official explanation with Ayala would be awkward to say the least, but she would find out eventually. Weighing her options Felina let out a heavy sigh, realizing it would be better for everyone to just get it over with quickly and neatly in a controlled environment.
"We've hit a bit of a problem with innocent people being possessed... by Taden. It seems after his last defeat he found a way to cheat death by cursing some of his old gear with fragments of his spirit. It started with Taden's old coat possessing the a Sheikah girl. She seems to have gotten the upper hand at the moment by using some kind of Garoh's blessing to supress Taden's evil, but that is only a temporary fix. I've also spotted two other Taden fragments during the fight last night. One of them seemed to be in Taden's old monkey form, holding dominion over some poor sap. The other was Taden's old cursed knife which seems to have found a way to act on its own without a host body. Sure the easy solution would be to just kill everyone possessed, but even your brother agreed that would be a bit to messy at the moment." Felina spoke, hoping Ayala would be able to handle the news and keep her cool.
Ayala/Castle Town/Day 6
Ayala froze in shock as she came to terms with what Felina had told her. Taden was alive again and controlling three people. It had been centuries since The Hated had last appeared, even missing couple of wars between the Light and Dark Warriors. It was at the point where they were really starting to believe he was dead for good, but know he was back and with an upper hand.
Oberon was starting to grow concerned and was about to start on one of her Kill Death Kill for Great Awesomeness and Justice outbursts to break the mode but Ayala finally started talking a smile so obviously forced even those who didn't know the situation could see the pain behind it. "Well know I know what my brother and Phoenix were trying to hide from me."
"Well if that's the case we better hurry. Taden's a lot more dangerous when he's not himself... as wierd as that sounds." she said keeping with usual cheer disposition as artificial as it now was. She picked up her pace almost to the point passing Felina when she finally slowed down to ask a question she suddenly realize she needed to know the answer to before should could go after Taden. "These people who are possessed. Do you know them? What kind of people are they?"
IC: Felina - Castle town outskirts - morning 6
Of the varying ways Ayala could have reacted she had chosen to keep everything bottled up and keep trudging forward. Although it wasn't the best way it could have played out, it definetly wasn't the worst. If she had learned the truth from one of Taden's hosts it would have been significantly more damaging. They would just need to keep an eye on her to make sure she didn't try and run off and take matters into her own hands.
"Well, I've only met one of the hosts. She is a shiekah named Lynn. As you can guess she has the general dog-like sheikah personality. The usual black and white view of the world combined with an unwaivering loyalty to her master. The other host was wearing the monkey mask and seemed to revert to a different personality when it was taken off, but I don't know anything about him or his loyalties beyond that. The third one was the most pure form of Taden's soul and seemed to be acting independently in a more ghostly form than the others." Felina replied, hoping that the information would let Ayala guard herself from unexpected surprises from Taden and wouldn't simply be used as intel for any revenge schemes she might have.
"... Oh yeah, it isn't directly related, but Kinslayer is also around doing his own thing. He made off with one of the ingredients for the sword, so we'll have to tangle with him eventually. From what I've heard a Twili monster summoner raided the Goron's and stole another ingredient." she added as duo left the vicinity of the castle and entired the plains between the castle and the forests.
Tobias Pepperwhistle/ Castle Town Streets/ Mid-morning 6
"I say, Pepperwhistle," he murmured to his erstwhile friend and ally, "that beast of ours would be quite an advantage in this instance, wouldn't you agree? A shame he's supposed to be dead, and no where near us. Perhaps with this Langston fellow we might be able to make for a distraction and have you break away to fetch the armored bloke? I'm really not certain how much longer we can last, as is."
Tobias nodded, "Aye, yer right abou' tha' 'ark, we need back up. An' who bett'r than tha' beastie?" Pepperwhistle spun and bolted over to where Eddard was fighting, whispering something in his ear before running off again. Langston, although looking mildly perplexed, seemed to understand and put the distraction into motion.
Finally a safe distance away, Tobias ducked behind a building slid down a manhole into the cities grimy underbelly once again. He sprinted through the maze of tunnels back to where Harkens command post had been set up and blew passed the guards without so much as a "'ow d'you do," skidding to a stop in front of he newly re-formed hulking mass of black armor, Tobias sat cross legged in front of him and began to chant rhythmically in the ancient language, reciting each well rehearsed verse. When he was finished, there was, but one ingredient left to complete the process, pricking his own finger, he let a few droplets of blood seep in through the cracks of Taurs armor.
Tobias had barely retreated a few paces away when an eery crimson glow could be seen coming from two tiny slits of eyes behind the obsidian helm. "G'mornin' sunshine! We got some nasties givin' us one 'ell of a time an' we need yeh to smash em, smash em all. Follow me."
Dagnir's cape fluttered slightly as the gargantuan knuckle adorned head to toe in battle armor blacker than a star less midnight sky hefted the battle axe Tholcrist and lumbered along behind his master. There would be hell to pay for the undead horde and their leader who dared stir his slumber.
Eddard Langston/Mid Morning 6/Streets
Eddard listened to Pepperwhistle's instructions. Comprehending came quickly and was a relief to hear. Whatever secret weapon these men had hiding would hopefully be able to take some of the load off of him. He was being fairly hard-pressed, and would likely be dead if not for Volvagia's protection.
He delved deep into his mind, searching for that hidden connection he had to the bird. RITO! Where ever you are, get over here now or there'll be hell to pay later. He came back into reality and continued to defend himself, patiently waiting for the flash of red feathers to come into his mind.
The Rito slowly got up from his unconsciousness, still shocked from the jolt of hearing his master's voice so stern. He searched his mind, searching for the location, then instantly took off. His tone was almost scared, it seemed, and put the Rito's mind into an uneasy wariness.
When at last he saw him standing on the ground foolishly swinging around his sword, the Rito understood why he had heard the fear. Surrounding him was nothing short of an army of walking dead. All of them had mangled faces, decrepit bones, and let off an awful stench to his sensitive nose. He swooped down next to his master and hovered, waiting for orders.
[color=white][hl=blue]"It's about time you got here. Pick me up and fly, not too far, but enough to get out of reach."[/hl][/color]
The Rito obeyed, flying with Eddard hanging roughly ten years overhead.
[color=white][hl=blue]"Yes, good. Now screech, loud and long, as hard as you can."[/hl][/color]
The Rito had no idea why he was doing this, but once again he obeyed. He buried deep inside himself, reaching for his primal aviary instincts, and let out a thunderous caw. Almost at once, every skeleton in the turned to them and started to focus their attention on the flying pair. Eddard reached into his pocket and took out some Sheikah style ninja stars he had found once, and began chucking them downward, angering them even more. But for now, it seemed, they were safe.
Sha'Tive/Rito's mind/Mid Morning
"It's funny, your unquestioning service to him reminds me of my husband, back when I was a beautiful young Hylian. No matter how absurd or taxing the tasks they gave him, he did them all without hesitation. It was because he could fly, and it's also why he is dead now. Only a madman would fly in and investigate that enormous ball of ice, knowing full well that it would drop at any moment..."
Sha'Tive noticed that her lecture was all that was needed to affect the Rito, and simply stopped.
"You truly need to learn how to remain in control while I talk to you,' she chuckled. 'I know children whom have the very same connection that don't so much as blink when I speak to them telepathically..."
Vykos/Castle Town Ruins/Morning 6
Insignificant gnats. All of them. They were causing problems for his minions and his simple desire to lay waste to all living things. It wasn't even about serving the Twili anymore, even though his allegiance was still with them. It was about revenge for his untimely demise, repayment for centuries of waging war in the underworld, and everything else.
That would all be revealed in due time if people wished to transcend their mortal condition and serve him as walking dead.
As for now, these Hylians, whether willing or not, would be his next victims and possibly minions.
To further decimate the front lines, Vykos detonated a line of corpses, sending putrescent shrapnel and caustic fumes throughout that area.
He noticed a few figures in the sky, trying to cause trouble. Or be heroes. Or something. Whatever it was, they'd have to deal with some Ghini, which he ordered upward to attempt to handle the issue. After that, he began to reanimate more Stalfos from the remains of fallen enemies to reinforce his numbers. Zombie slaves drug any workable materials that they saw to the back, near his cart. Eventually, the bodies would run out, but he'd make good use of anything he found.
Hiding among his horde, Vykos continued to work hard simply because the sounds of anguish satisfied him.
But he found that the best solution to any problem in the underworld was to throw more bodies at it. He'd have enough left over at the end to hold his position if he did this properly...
Taur Dagnir/ Hyrule Streets/ Mid-Morning 6
As Pepperwhistle skittered away up through the manhole and back towards the field of battle, Taur gazed up at the hole, much to narrow to permit him passage. A dilemma easily remedied. Dagnir stretched forth his hand, palm burning a sinister crimson, not unlike his slits for eyes, balling his hand into a fist, a wave of kinetic energy shot outwards and blasted the once tiny manhole into a massive crater. Swinging his war axe upwards, he lodged it into the stone and used it to pull himself up and out of the sewers.
Once freed from the underground, Taur inhaled deeply, death was thick in the air, this pleased him. Pressing onward he barreled forwards with a speed unnatural for his size. In moments he was in the thick of it. A vast army of the undead surrounded his masters and their troops. Such fools, surrounding themselves with these fleshy guards, he spat,Soldiers? These rodents dare to call themselves soldiers...? Taur stopped himself short, he was about to call his masters fools, something they would not take kindly to, so he refrained. Instead, he charged forward into the battle, the blood curtling screech of a redead stopped him in his tracks, turning to look upon the faceless foe, he chuckled at it,"Your scare tactics will find neither home nor sustenance within my soul, fool." He split the zombie in two, from head to toe with one downward slash of his axe. The beast exploded into a cloud of ash as Dagnir pressed even deeper into the lines of the abominations. Grasping both the axe handle with both hands, he swing in a wide arc, slamming the head of the weapon into countless foes, he spun and spun and spun, cutting down more and more of the undead. It seemed however, where one fell there were two more to step into it's place.
Finally, forced to slow his rotation as a wave of dizziness overtook him, Dagnir stowed his axe, in doing so, he felt a tug at his cape and turned to face a gibdo. If he could, Taur would've rolled his eyes, as the mummy began to attack. Heavily armored forearms blocked all incoming blows, until finally he grew weary of toying with his prey. His right arm exploded forward and a gauntleted fist smashed into the creatures head, removing it from it's shoulders. As the cranium bounced across the cobblestone, the headless body still fumbled around, arms waving wildly as it searched for it's executioner. Snatching it up by the waist and raising it high above his head, the king slayer roared loudly and hurled the still flailing body into the crowd of oncoming attackers.
The deep guttural growl that was his voice rose above the din, "Any and all possessing the fortitude and the want to meet death. Approach. Come now, to accept your demise!"
[b]The Rito/Above the Battle/Noon 6[/b]
The Rito began to descend slowly as once again the visions pierced his mind. He was still flapping, but was flying all over the place. Hanging below, he could vaguely make out his master's complaints, but could comprehend no words being spoke. His vision filled with pink again, and he cringed every time he saw her appear.
She was saying something about a husband, a ball of ice? He made no sense of it until the end. "You truly need to learn how to remain in control while I talk to you."
Control? This whole time he had been so shocked by the sudden visions that he had become unable to concentrate on anything else. He could feel his mind being broken, the same way his master had broke him mind so long ago. He felt anger swell up inside of him at the thought of his past. Memories of Eddard's harsh treatment and torture came back to him, and suddenly he recalled what had been said in a previous vision.
The three words flooded his thought process, the three words she had spoken so casually, and yet they seemed so monumental to him.
"He shall die," she had said. She had meant Eddard, his master, his bane, and yet, he knew that he could not die. His death meant something far worse than he cared to think about.
Frantically, he gained back control. Eddard was swinging wildly at some sort of specters with his sword, causing little damage. His knowledge of Hylian lore was pathetic at best, though truth be told he could not say how he had acquired such a vast wealth of information himself.
"No, no master. Concentrate on one! If one dies, they all die, it is their way!" But Eddard still hacked uncontrolled in all directions, taken by his fear of heights and ghosts.
[i]This is hopeless.[/i]
The Rito swooped down, dropping Eddard off next to the men he had been with earlier, but as far away from that hulking monstrosity that had been brought to the battle. The Ghini concentrated their attack now on him. He flew up, up into the sun where their power would be weakest. He hoped that he was right, and that once one was dead they all would vanish.
As he fought, he searched his mind for the connection to the pink witch. Having mastered the art of telepathy with Eddard, he was aware of the process, but it was harder to find one whom with his bond was small. At last, he found it, and spoke back to the one whose voice he had been dreading to hear.
"You speak of the death of the one whom I hate most, and so I am willing to accept your mind fully. My mistress, I am yours now, forever more, as long as you promise to rid me of my master. But there is something you do not understand, I think. Our bodies are linked, as are our souls. If he dies, then so must I."
Vykos/Castle Town Ruins/Morning 6
"We are unending. Relentless. We do not tire as those with mortal bindings do. Swarm upon them, minions. Devour all hope of victory!"
Vykos saw a heavily armored individual beginning to cleave its way through the lines with little effort. This would be a threat if he were to be found, as his power was in his army. There were a few backup measures to buy him time if he needed to retreat, but those took a while to prepare.
Bodies were piling up, ripe for reanimation and explosion. When blighted corpses were killed, the profane diseases within began to fester and bloat. Vykos decided to test the integrity of the armored ax man's defenses, detonating corpses in his general area.
To share the pain, he blew up more bodies in the area where the Hylians were in greatest concentration. Organic shrapnel and clouds of disease began to fly everywhere.
Vykos used his cart for cover as he continued to make the most of what materials he had on hand. Adding to his numbers was priority one. Overwhelm them so that casualties didn't matter. After all, his armies didn't need training time. They had instinct.
Chamdar Break Edit
Chamdar Taliesin - South of Kakariko - Sixth Day
Though it had been but a mere few days since his departure, Chamdar felt his return to the peaceful glen in which he made his home was a long time coming. Events had unfolded as they had many times before. He had seen devastation like unto that being wrought now in the realm of Hyrule many times before. His tired eyes had witnessed the destruction of Hyrule, the slaughter of its people, and the rape of its temples and the secrets held therein so many times that he no longer seemed to feel it as he once had. The ages had changed him irrevocably.
So long ago in the distant past of Hyrule that he could barely recall, he had been like the light warriors were now. He had been filled with the passion for justice, the desire for peace and honor. Now he felt cold, distant. He'd seen it played through a hundred times. A thousand. No longer did he see the lives involved, the fleeting joys and fears. He saw pieces on a chess board.
Dark and pervasive thoughts such as these played through his waking mind as he pushed open the door and stepped into the relative darkness. A dismissive wave of his hand brought a gleaming light to a small crystalline orb that hung from the crossbeam in the center of his dwelling and illuminated the scrolls and manuscripts that were strewn about on every surface available. He had been concerned with the coming of another critical period even before Kinslayer had approached him. He had felt the balance shifting and moving precariously from side to side. Word had reached his ears of the Interlopers, of their profane magicks and their wanton deeds.
Even he had been unsure of what the signs and portents had meant. Now as he considered matters, he came to realize that this was perhaps the most significant period in centuries. All the pieces that remained needed to be put into play. A new Scion had been called, old heroes and old villains had surfaced and were joined by new ones. The current of events was building toward an unfathomable crescendo.
He could no longer hold back.
He crossed the room, brushing dust from his pristine white cassock and kneeling next to a loose floorboard. He tapped his finger across two nails until he found the one that had come free, then reached into a pocket and pulled free the nail in question. He whispered the words of power into his fist and then gingerly placed the nail back into place. The plank seemed to sizzle for a moment as the protective spell he'd placed over it, just one of several mystical countermeasures he'd put into place, disengaged.
Are you sure of this, Chamdar? Cecile's voice whispered in his ear. As he had so many times before he turned his head toward the sound of the voice. She stood, or at least the image of her stood, bathed in the light of his orb. The soft white glow lit her fall of curled golden locks and set off her features, incorporeal as they were, in the most remarkable of ways. She was a vision of beauty from an age so distant in the dim past that she seemed impossible.
"There can be no other time but now. The pieces are in the field of play, and you've seen as I have what they've wrought." He replied, turning his had back to the task. Memories of the event flashed in his mind. At least some of the damage, some of the dire consequences of the moment, fell upon his shoulders.
He tapped his fingers back three places and pulled out another nail from the plank. This time there was no sound, but another spell he'd placed over the floorboard took effect. His hand passed through the seemingly corporeal wood and after a moment of groping about, pulled forth a long, slender box of polished rowan. Reverently he placed it in on the floor in front of his knees.
This is a dangerous time to introduce such a variable. You can not be sure of how it will affect the balance.
"No. I suppose I can't." He replied as he passed his thumb over the crescent moon that was carved into the top of the box. An otherwise innocuous symbol, it signified a terrible event and a dark future. "But I have no choice."
He drew a quick breath and held it as he thrust open the lid. He exhaled sharply after a screen of light washed over him like a wave of blistering heat. Yet another of the safeguards he'd placed on the item, a judgment spell that, had he sought the contents of the box for selfish or truly malevolent reasons, would have seared the flesh from his bones.
A moment later he lifted the delicately crafted katana from its resting place. So simple and so beautiful a weapon that it almost bewitched the eye, its appearance belied its nature. The crescent moon was emblazoned on each side of the navy scabbard in polished silver.
"Nothing is easy."
IC: Taden's Ghost / Hyrule Field / Day 6
"Therefore the winds, piping to us in vain,
As in revenge, have suck'd up from the sea..."
Hovering over one of the bottomless chasms that marred the Hyrulean countryside, Taden's Dead Heart summoned up a billowing mist from the abysmal depths. It churned over the lip of the chasm he hovered above, then began rolling through the fields in a westerly direction. The rising sun bleached the landscape to his invisible back, but the lands beyond were still coated in the early morning's shade and dew.
"...Contagious fogs; which falling in the land
Have every pelting river made so proud
That they have overborne their continents..."
As the mists spread through the fields, the black orb lowered over a swollen river's current. With the great curse of chryomancy lowered upon the Lake and the River by the Twili ice mage and himself, the tributaries had begun to rise for want of outlet. Into the layer of mist that Taden had coated the horizon with, the first inches of floodwaters entered into the frigid morning air. On the far side of the field where he worked his magic, he could see a dilapidated farmhouse, with a candle lighting the window.
"The ox hath therefore stretch'd his yoke in vain,
The ploughman lost his sweat, and the green corn
Hath rotted ere his youth attain'd a beard..."
Drawing closer to the farmhouse, a lone heifer grunted at Taden's Ghost from behind a large box. With the sound of a ragged breath spreading out in her direction, Taden sent a chilling wave of air over the beast, and she slowly dropped to the ground as her eyes glazed over and froze. A coating of frost sharpened the blades of grass surrounding the cattle, and the planks of the box by which she fell creaked as the ice filled its rotted wood.
No energy came into him as a result of killing the animal. He needed the soul of a higher being to sate his gnawing lust for death. Approaching the farmhouse's front path, he released another wave of cold, and the bevy of bovines that had gathered at the barn door to be let in from the sudden morning chill now collapsed in a heap of plaintive and mournful groans.
"The fold stands empty in the drowned field,
And crows are fatted with the murrion flock;
The nine men's morris is fill'd up with mud,
And the quaint mazes in the wanton green
For lack of tread are undistinguishable..."
Responding to the lowered pressure of his cold front, a cloud of air from the neighboring valley began to careen into the fields from the west. Over the rows of maize and wheat, the fell pallor of disease swept from the battlegrounds surrounding the Ruins of Hyrule Castle Town. Corpses rotted there in the open air, and their stench and contagion wafted freely over the hills. Here, it slowly seeped into the membrane of the tending farmer's crops, and merged with the gaseous excretions of the cattle freshly deceased.
"The human mortals want their winter here;
No night is now with hymn or carol blest:
Therefore the moon, the governess of floods,
Pale in her anger, washes all the air,
That rheumatic diseases do abound..."
In the still-pale halflight of the morning, Taden perceived the high moon looking down in cold contempt on the wasted world below. Her frigid stare was merciless against the encroaching crest of the sun, a red blot on the eastern sky. Finally, he heard the click of a door, and saw at last the occupant of the farmhouse storm out to investigate the dying moans of his cattle. Only, it was not the hale and weathered farmer Taden had expected, but a mere boy, the son of the King's serf who lived here. Invisible to him, Taden remained motionless, concealed by the light, and watched as the boy dropped to his knees over the fallen cattle, mourning them and the grain withering under hoarfrost with confusion and anger. The boy's youth shone through in his red cheeks and bright eyes, blue under a mane of Hylian blonde hair.
Taden raised his voice, echoing louder than the frosty whisper with which he had spoken before.
"And thorough this distemperature we see
The seasons alter: hoary-headed frosts
Far in the fresh lap of the crimson rose,
And on old Hiems' thin and icy crown
An odorous chaplet of sweet summer buds
Is, as in mockery, set..."
A cold shadow fell over the weeping boy as Taden summoned a cloudbank overhead. In the thickened shadow, his form became more clear, and the boy beheld the translucent figure of a white-haired mage with grey skin and black robes hovering above his head.
"...The spring, the summer,
The childing autumn, angry winter, change
Their wonted liveries, and the mazed world,
By their increase, now knows not which is which..."
Raising up his now visible hand, Taden called a rim of freezing air in around the boy, until his very bones rattled with the cold that penetrated them. He laid eyes on the boy, his wide, tear-stained gaze gawking up at Taden's emotionless stare. He felt the life sucking out of him. Already hunger had prevailed upon the boy, as it had his livestock and family. Taden's icy mayhem in the Province of Lanayru had leveled famine and disease upon the unsuspecting country.
"And this same progeny of evils comes
From our debate, from our dissension;
We are their parents and original."
Finishing his redoubled curse on the Lanayru countryside, Taden lifted into the air as the boy dropped dead to the ground, and when the dark clouds parted above he became invisible again. Still, no renewed source of life came into his being. He felt not quenched in his thirst to kill. He felt the life of the small boy slipping away, into the shadows he knew not whence. It fled to some other destination, bound up with Taden's victims, and his crimes.
"Thus, Oblivion has been unearthed," Taden reflected, as he lost touch with the drifting life force on the disease-ridden gales of Lanayru. "The White Hand of the Goddesses has reached into the Abyss. The searching tendrils of fate now writhe in the tempestuous future. What odds that Chamdar Taliesin remains bound to his destiny of olde?" Taden's hands now yearned for a new objective; not merely to kill, but to that which promised to restore him to the might of an unstoppable killer, a harbinger of death on the high winds of chaos. Somewhere in the distance, he felt his Tempest Coin vibrating, and somewhere else still he felt the dull ache of his Monkey's Mask, the fragments of his soul in the care of empty vessels who housed none. The day would soon come when the injustice visited upon him by the Royal Court would be repaid, starting with the High Chancellor of that time, Taliesin.
Chamdar Taliesin - Hyrule Castle Town Ruins - Sixth Day
Your duties must now supersede their needs.
The words of the divine servant echoed in his mind as he strode amidst the devastation. War had come and gone in the long history of Hyrule, and that which had been destroyed had been rebuilt time and again. Always before the light warriors had found some way to triumph over the depravity and evil that had threatened to plunge the realm into an age of interminable darkness. This time, however, Chamdar doubted their ability. Their resolve.
Kinslayer was as lethal and harbored as little regard for the lives of others as he had ever seen. Taden Hothnight had returned as well, as was ever his wont, and his machinations were sinister and destructive. The very worst of the now ancient dark votaries had returned and were joined by a few new faces as well. Lurking behind the immediate threat they posed was the massive Twili horde that lay even now in the depths of the desert, awaiting the time when it would march forth and spill out into the heart of the realm. The Hylian defenders had been scattered and devastated, they possessed not the strength to repel the full onslaught of the Interlopers.
Powers converged in the realm that threatened to destroy it utterly. The light warriors had proved ineffective.
Alternative measures had to be explored, he thought as his fingers caressed the hilt of the blade that hung from his belt. So long had it been since he'd drawn it forth from its safe resting place that he had almost forgotten how it had come to be in his possession. The Royal Court. The trial. Memories flooded his waking mind, for in his transformation he no longer had much need of sleep.
The trial. It was the last time he had been of the White. In the aftermath of that dreadful event he had abdicated the White, had descended to the Gray, and taken upon himself the name of his lesser state of being. Now though, he had ascended once more, and could no longer ignore the events that had unfolded or their significance in what now transpired.
Thus did he, Chamdar Taliesin of the White, Hand of the Goddesses, march ever northward.
[b]The Rito/Above the battle/Noonish 6[/b]
The Rito drew his tiny knife, knowing that it didn't take much to end these creatures lives. Once the leader was dead, then the rest would fade, it was just a matter of finding him. Unfortunately, in the day light, it was hard to see the faint glow which would indicate the leader, so for now he had to fight them all and hope he got lucky.
As one made a lunge for him, he swooped out of the way and stabbed upward, causing that one to fade into nothingness, but it was no good. The others still remained, at least a dozen of them. Again and again he knifed, but to no avail, he just couldn't seem to find the leader. He had to get out of the light, into somewhere with at least a shadow. He flew down into the nearest alley, hoping he would be able to gauge the difference between the ghini.
Sha'Tive/ Rito's Mind/ Noon 6
Right as the Rito fled into the shadows of the alleyway, Sha'Tive found it much easier to see around through his eyes. Her curse made it nearly impossible to see in the sunlight for her, and with the sudden relief of regaining sight, she spoke.
"You may never see me in person, but as long as you fight for our cause, I will gladly send my children your way to help..."
A low hiss could be heard as several pure white eyes appeared from the shadows, each pair a different size and shape. One pair of eyeballs gained a body; a stretched humanoid shape, with longs claws in place of hands, and the face of an elderly Zora, which lacked the convenience of a jaw, leaving only a gaping maw. The rest of the creature seemed to fade into nothing.
"You look delicious, bird creature...but you smell like "Mother". As long as you breathe, we are at your unquestioned command..." It's speech was deep, raspy and slow, but managed to sound benign in nature.
"It's about time you get to taste the power of leadership...Lucifer."
Sha'Tive, Goron Sliver, Zora Sliver, Child Sliver, and Old Man Sliver/ Telepathy/ Noon 6
"Friends, I think I've found a magic user."
"What makes you think that?"
"Look at him. His clothing and weapon choice. Who else wields a stick?"
"Common travelers and mountain-climbers perhaps?"
"Oh, shut up. Who cares what he is? He is by himself; astray from anyone else."
"We can easily pick him from where he stands."
"Mother will be pleased!"
"I want his stick!"
"Enough, my children. His power is most definitely vast. I've seen men like him, and he obviously knows all sorts of magicks. He will be a fine addition to our Family."
"He looks strong, mother."
"No need to worry your little heads, children. I will help you with this kill."
"Wouldn't it be best if you approached him in animal form, like the bird creature?"
"He looked so tasty when he stared at you with his naive expression!"
"No need. As you all noticed, he is alone. The only reason I assumed the form of a cat when I connected with the Rito was because of the great conflict that ravaged this town...many hours ago."
"A catch with Mother? This will be so fun!"
Hyrule Castle Town Ruins/Noon 6
A loud and alarming noise rang out into the air, not unlike that of a cat. The cracks beneath the bricks of the ground darkened to a onyx black, and shined as if wet. Like liquid it spread, until spilling out, onto the brick. With the viscosity of molasses, but the speed of spilled water, the black goo swept past where Chamdar walked, covering his boots as it swept past. Faster and faster the liquid ran, almost making foam due to the speed it had reached, until finally stopping dead. A quick look around would reveal that the ground was completely black, several dozen feet in each direction. It had no trail, no evidence of where or when it came. Even though it was deep enough to completely cover the brick it rested on, the liquid resisted flowing farther, as if held in place by an invisible force.
The liquid that covered Chamdar's feet pushed him upward, and out of being submerged. The very spot he stood on hardened to that of concrete, as did the rest of the mysterious black liquid. As soon as this strange series of events took place, a pure black cat appeared next to Chamdar's boot, and pressed against it. It meowed, purring happily, before walking off. Upon reaching about ten feet away, it stopped and turned to him, looking up at Chamdar. It looked into his eyes, long and hard, before speaking in human tongue.
"You may not know what we are, but you will come to like...being with us." The last word in her sentence ended with a low hiss, as the ground became liquid again, and then to mist. Much of the mist dissipated and disappeared, whilst the rest began to solidify into humanoid shapes. Bodies of all kinds of sizes, shapes, colors, and races appeared from the mist. They all had a blue glow to them, and they all only showed their faces and arms. The rest seemed to remain in a trenchcoat-like mist that covered them, spread across the ground, ever flowing into nothingness.
"Yesssss...'one child-like figure giggled excitedly, "'He will be a fine addition to our family. Can he be my uncle this time?" As he finished, he entered an animal-like pouncing posture, and lunged at Chamdar. The rest smiled endlessly at Chamdar, flying around excitedly, waiting for their mother to make the next call.
Sha'Tive simply stared at Chamdar, unblinking, waiting to inspect his actions upon being attacked. Only could she know the next proper action. She was still a cat, but even if a cat's mouth looked like one already, she managed to smile.
b][color=yellow][hl=darkblue]Whie Malreaux[/color][/hl]/Near Hyrule Castle/Mid-Morning 6[/b]
Whie stuffed the Monkey Mask deeper into the pouch on his belt, protecting it even as he loathed it. The people around paid him no mind. He was another of the many refugees huddled into the carts of the escaping caravan.
He knew they were on their way as the wagon rocked into motion. The word was they were headed to Kakariko. He just knew he had to follow these troops. They'd take him where he needed to go. Eventually.
[b]Summary:[/b] Nothing much, Whie is with the caravan of refugees. Just read it?
[hr] [b][hl=#BA55D3]Penumbra[/hl]/Noon 6/Hyrule Castle[/b]
The people were here. He could feel them in their perversity. But the Light had left these halls, and so he stalked them. The Word would be spread, and the world would know of the Coming. Many had left, but they held hope in their souls. Such was a false calling, and only disappointment awaited them, followed shortly by death or worse. Their time would come as it would, and his teachings were not for them.
His teachings were for the ones who remained. He brought a new calling to those who were hopeless, a goal for their striving, a meaning to their tribulations. An end that suited them.
And what more fitting place than this before him. These that were broken took residence in what was a place of worship, now defiled. It suited them, and it suited Penumbra. Thus was the fate of the world. It would all be turned to Dusk.
He smiled as he entered, his raiment of shadow shimmering darkness. "[hl=#BA55D3]You have turned your backs on the Goddesses! Such is wise, for they care naught for you. They, before this, have turned their backs on you! Hyrule crumbles, as it should be. And the Twili, these Interlopers, as you call them... they worship what they do not understand. But you! You have proven you are wise, to renounce your old ways of ignorance. Prove once more your wisdom, and I will teach you. The Dusk will spread, and to those who embrace it, it will be a paradise. Listen to me, and I will tell you the way to this paradise, which will encompass all. Those who do not follow my mistress will feel her wrath and scorn, and to them will the new world be a hell of unending madness![/hl]"
He strode through the crowd, as they watched him warily, not knowing, yet, whether to attack or hear his words. He stepped onto the dais at the head of the room, and strode behind the pulpit.
"[hl=#BA55D3]I present you a question: Do you wish paradise, or hell?[/hl]"
Then congregation, confused, glanced at one another. Finally, one who seemed an unofficially leader spoke. "Who are you? What are you talking about?"
He knew, then, he had them. It was a matter of time, and sharing the Warp. "[hl=#BA55D3]I am the Penumbra. And I speak of Dusk...[/hl]" He spread his arms, and from his raiment spilled a wash of darkness channeled from the Dusk through his body. The pain was excruciatingly blissful as it tore his being. "[hl=#BA55D3]... which will bless the worthy faithful with its maddening powers.[/hl]"
The man who had spoke stepped forward, curiosity overcoming caution, and Penumbra lowered his arms, bringing them together before him. As his arms moved, the darkness of the Dusk encompassed the approaching man. He shrieked as the Warp took his mind. The process was quick in a normal Hylian as he, touched not by magic and strengthened not by the arcane or divine. Penumbra sensed the twisting of the mind of this new child, and the darkness withdrew to his raiment as the pain ebbed with the cessation of channeling the Dusk.
"[hl=#BA55D3]Do you feel its blessing, Brother?[/hl]"
The man stood stock still, body rigid and eyes opened wide. His mouth hung open in a silent scream as his mind accustomed itself to its new working. "Yessssss..." he murmured. "I understand."
Penumbra smiled. The first of his converts, and with that, the rest would fall.
Chamdar Taliesin - Castle Town Ruins - Sixth Day
Surrounded. Chamdar's gaze roamed over the encircling horde of the undead, and the black feline that addressed him. The resonance of the profane magic that lifted their corpses from the earth sent a chill down his spine. The bodies of the slain, all those felled during the battle, walked again as though offered new life, but they were not alive and as he watched and assessed them he realized that these bodies were not driven by the consciousnesses they had harbored in life.
A child stepped forward from the throng, speaking as a child would but for the darkness and hunger in its voice. Chamdar knew better than to be fooled into inaction, and when the child crouched and then pounced forward to attack he was met in the air by the end of his staff. Momentum stopped the child dropped to the ground well short of his prey.
He looked to the cat. "I'm afraid I'm going to have to decline."
The undead child was back on his feet and preparing for another attack. Chamdar offered him no such opportunity. He squared up to the child, holding his staff far out to his right as he flourished his left hand toward the infantile zombie. The runes and emblems on the holm oak shaft flared with pure, incandescent light, a light that seemed to envelope the entirety of his form a moment later.
"The spread of your depravity must be mitigated, if not ceased entirely."
A brilliant bar of pure white light erupted from his outstretched palm, striking the child in the chest and blasted him back through the lines of his brethren and into the rubble of what had been not long before a structure within the city. Acting decisively he did not wait until the undead child rose again. He twirled his staff in both hands above his head and, as the runes burned ever brighter, slammed the butt of it down onto the cobbled street before him and loosed a blinding corona of divine energy. That wave of power radiated outward from him in all directions.
Sha'Tive/ Hyrule Ruins/ Day VI
As the burst of light spread forth from the staff of the mage, almost all of her children nearby dove towards Sha'Tive and huddled, in effort to save her. They were successful, but the power of the mage had hardened thier flesh to that of a weak crust. Some groaned in agony, while some groaned not because they had been burned by the wave, but because they had been successful in protecting thier Mother.
"As I feared, he is one of the lightbringers. How disgusting, my other Me was one as well."
She cringed at the thought of taking the brunt of that first wave. As she decided on her next form, she could hear the agonized scream of the Child member that had lunged at the current prey. This sound would normally disturb someone whom was a parent, but it filled Sha'Tive with glee.
"I suppose this will have to be a fight I'll actually have to participate in."
As she rose to her feet, she decided to take her own form, which would be fitting, since her new prey will have to get used to it sooner or later. The small ball of burned flesh that protected her previous form crumbled away into dust as she emerged from the heap, in her real form. Her skin was pale and grey with filth and malnutrition where her white skin would be, and red covered where her black skin would have been. Her skin was covered everywhere in scars, representing those of which she killed herself. Her breasts were perky and plump with milk, near a C cup at least. The only piece of clothing she wore currently was the remains of a shirt, which could hardly hid her heavily pregnant belly. Despite her pregnancy, she looked rather skinny for someone whom was about to give birth successfully. She moved her blood stained hair out of her face as she began to clap her blood stained hands slowly, all while her evil, yellow eyes stared into the eyes of her newest, more interesting target. He giggled, and spoke with a cold and almost seductive voice.
"My, my, my...It seems we have a trooper! It's good to see a strong-willed warrior emerge from the ashes of the weak. It seems I'll have to handle this myself. I must warn you...Chamdar Taliesin."
She put emphasis on his name, waiting gleefully for a physical response as she reached for her shirt. She tore her shirt off and wrapped up into a blindfold-like shape, and tied the bloody piece of fabric over her eyes. She had been rendered blind and naked, but the excitement of the hunt and the freedom of the shape of an animal she always took had programmed her brain to not make a difference between if it mattered or not. As she did this, she bent over in an almost animal-like posture, low to the ground, head cocked towards her prey.
"It won't be so easy to hurt me with pure magic...for unlike my children, I am flesh and blood." She pulled something that glinted in the light from her teeth and twirled what appeared to be imaginary string around her finger. The light of the sun seemed to reveal a small, needle-like object on the end of said string as it glinted periodically.
"I don't know about you, but this will be fun! I just know it!" As she spoke, she held her hands out, fingers stretched, and flicked her fingers and a faint sound, much like metal bouncing off something rang out, and several glinting object flew in several directions, but not at the target.
"I like to let the prey make the first move. It's just more fun that way." She giggled, and waited.
[b]Vykos/Castle Town Ruins/Morning 6[/b]
He'd heard some intel about a divine warrior recently awakening to serve the Light Warriors. He hoped he wouldn't have to meet her in combat. But was the Twili intel wrong? A man just called forth a corona of undead-turning holy light, which smote nearly a third of his forces. Of course, there were other evil parties at work, and this divine servant was not directly engaged in combat with him.
Still, the fallout could compromise his operation. Which seemed like a lost cause at this point, but he was fine with kicking the Hylians while they were down. Most had pulled out, save the forces led by mortal necromancers.
Vykos gave orders to pull back from the blast radius. Not knowing the full potential of the transfigured man, he pressed the attack with what was left, wondering if he should unleash the Gibdos or not.
They were to cover his escape, however. He decided against it a moment after considering it. Ghini in the air were still doing their thing, or so he thought. It couldn't be bothered at this time. This body was too good to lose and his replacements did not have his grimoire or his robes.
This was supposed to be open and shut. Maydni's chaotic planning hamstrung this as many of Vykos' allies did not follow the script. They all wanted to raise their own personal hell. And while it worked, it could have worked better by keeping everyone on the same page.
[hl=limegreen]"Soldiers of undeath, redouble to Point Gamma! Steer clear of holy energies!"[/hl]
Taden's Ghost / Castle Town Ruins / Day 6
Like a magnetic force, Taden felt the accursed signature of his Storm Medallion pulsating somewhere in the extensive ruins of Hyrule Castle Town. And further north, he felt the weaker pulse of his Monkey Mask, sneaking away somewhere at the pace of a large caravan. From what he knew of Hyrule's tortured geography, it was heading into the eastern canyons, in the direction of Death Mountain. Where were you going, Whie? And who was taking you there?
Taden floated in the wretched swamps of Southern Hyrule, on the outskirts of the moist soil used for farming by the family whose estate he had raided. The air of plague floated around him, turning all the crooked trees and sparse reeds an ashen color.
One of his Relics had been transformed into the new magical aura of Lynn Hothlight. His Mask and Coin still wandered the earth, scattered on the winds of fate. But already he had bent those winds to deliver his Knife to him, and soon he would bring the remaining three Relics soaring back, destruction in their wake. It was all could think about. His mind was filled with thoughts of the night he had been robbed of his treasures, of the deceitful old tyrant who had brought him so low. Even now, it was as if he could hear the voice, taste the divine power, and smell the hermit's breath of Chamdar Taliesin borne on the breeze.
He pressed the blade of his knife into the palm of his hand, feeling its cool edge sink into his flesh slowly, slicing neatly through each weathered layer of skin. A clarifying kind of pain stretched over his mind that abated the seething hunger for a new mortal's untimely death. He slid the knife from his palm, and traced along the crack in the Dead Heart floating in his chest. The magical orb, which seemed to pulsate in unison with the sensation of his lost Medallion, still held many secrets within it, he knew. As the knife plunged deeper inside it, he felt a power emanating within it similar to the Blessing of Garo that had sublimated his power into Lynn Annei, turning her into Lynn Hothlight.
But it was not Garo who had sanctioned this Blessing. It was another Light Spirit. And this Light Spirit's Blessing seemed to mourn in agony at the havoc Taden had wrought across the Lanayru countryside. From Lake Hylia through Zora's River, Taden had driven an icy spear into the heart of Lanayru Province. And now, to his surprise, he found the Blessing of its own guardian trapped within his very heart.
Taden smiled at the irony. Truly, this was a sign from destiny.
He floated above the marsh to get a better view of the Ruins, then looked down from his invisible perch in the sky at the scene unfolding below. An army of darkness assaulted the ruins of Hyrule Castle Town, occupying the wasteland in the name of some foreign sorcerer. Fitting that the Castle which Taden had robbed of its faith would be overrun by these minions of the underworld. Not only had he closed the door to the Sacred Realm; now he would open the door to Hell.
Stretching out his hands, the winds of disease he had conjured from the swamplands rolled over the hills in gusts, wilting the brush. This mingled with the slowly advancing hoards of the undead, giving their hellish march a more putrid stench that reeked for miles around. Stragglers left in the Town Ruins were nauseated before the disease quietly settled into their lungs. Taden did not want to kill these remaining innocents yet; he wanted only to sow the seeds of death for now, and reap his harvest when the time was right. Breathing out slowly, he chilled the air surrounding the Castle ramparts, and floated down into the writhing army to disperse into a cold mist that veiled them from within. In this vaporous form, he pushed the currents of the air into columns that spread throughout the Ruins, rank with the diseased breath of the walking dead, like grey flames that licked along the cobblestone paths.
The LuciRito Thing/Castle Town Alley Way/Noon 6
It was the most bizarre creature he had ever laid eyes upon. A sort of mutilated zora, if it could even be called that, with no definite shape or form. These were creatures not of the natural world, and their simultaneously deathly yet soothing voice created a stark contrast. But it was the words, not the voice, which interested him the most.
"As long as you breathe, we are at your unquestioned command..."
The Rito paused for a moment, taken aback at the sudden paradigm shift he had just experienced. Command was his, and he had to let this idea fully sink in before he could comprehend its implications. He had power, actual power over someone (or in this case, something) else. And it was his choice, not someone else's, which would decide the outcome of his life.
Inwardly, he was exploding with giddiness.
And then he heard it again, the pink witch in his head, his new mistress as far as he was concerned.
"It's about time you get to taste the power of leadership...Lucifer."
He neither understood nor particularly liked the sound of what she had just called him. It had a rather ominous ring to it, almost as if his purpose was evil. But with a start, he realized that his future intentions were about as evil as they could get, considering murder was on the top of his mind at the moment.
But now was not the time to mull over new names; ghini were still flying after him, and he had to act fast to destroy the leader. He crouched down, ready to pounce when the strange zora creature acted first. It jumped up, slashing through several ghini at once, instantly killing all of them. Then, showing no signs of stopping, it did the same thing to another incoming group. It seemed the leader was in that group, as instantly the rest of the ghini vanished, leaving just him and his new minions alone in the dark alleyway, away from the fighting around the buildings.
The Rito smiled. This was all he ever wanted: a chance, an opportunity to exact his revenge. He searched his mind for the link to the witch, and then spoke directly to her. "The new creatures are interesting, my mistress, and I thank you for them. I would like to see you face-to-face, there is something pressing which I would like to discuss with you."
He had waited ten long years for this chance, he didn't want to wait any longer.
Poe Taden / Castle Town Ruins / Day 6
There's a certain Slant of light,
Winter Afternoons –
That oppresses, like the Heft
Of Cathedral Tunes –
Invisible, Taden passed easily through the crowds in the frozen streets. The dread mist hung over them all in a vague cloud, while a riotous battle seemed to unfold in slow motion. Rugged Hylian men gathered into bands set upon lone beasts of the undead in an alley, or a sole Hylian elder in rags looked to the skies before a coven of ogres impaled him on their tusks. And without the clamor and roar of disputes among sorcerers, the sporadic slaughter was eerily quiet.
Heavenly Hurt, it gives us –
We can find no scar,
But internal difference,
Where the Meanings, are –
Taden looked down at the empty space where his hand would be, and passed it under the shadow of a slab of rock jutting from a demolished shop. His grey flesh appeared, and he saw the thin scar of the wound he had inflicted on himself. He felt himself growing tired. Pulling his hand from the shadow, he rubbed it against his chin, and felt a rough coat of facial hair as his white beard grew in.
None may teach it – Any –
'Tis the Seal Despair –
An imperial affliction
Sent us of the air –
Pulling himself into the shadow of an alley, Taden looked down at a patch of ice and reflected on himself. His shock of hair, his grizzled beard. The image of Chamdar leapt into Taden's mind and he recoiled from the ice patch. As a ghost, a shadow within a shadow, Taden was growing older. Too fast. He needed a sacrifice.
When it comes, the Landscape listens –
Shadows – hold their breath –
When it goes, 'tis like the Distance
On the look of Death –
Raising his lantern under the cover of shadow, Taden brought his cloud of disease low over the cobblestones, and obscured the way of two Bulbins riding on the back of a starved and desperate-looking Bulbo. He waved the lantern over his head, and the Bulbo seemed to follow it instinctively, while the Bulbins quarreled over a sense of direction. Once they entered the shadow, the little dogmen yelped in fright, but a look in Taden's ghostly eyes chilled them to the bone. The ghastly boar rattled them off of its hide, and clumps of snow from their bodies hung from the fur between the ribs visible in his flank.
Taden unsheathed his Maskmaker's Knife and looked into the boar's eyes. Its hot breath coalesced into fog under his heaving nostrils. He drove the Knife into the boar's neck, then wrenched it to and fro in the quiet alley until the head came loose. A wretched black smoke frothed from the severed head to the blunt edge of the magic Knife. Sheathing it again, Taden's Ghost knelt down and grabbed the rotten boar's head by the tusk, his hands made tangible in the shadows away from the daylight. He swung the newly made mask above his head, then plopped it down over his shoulders, and promptly transformed into a grey-haired Bulbo.
Stepping out of the shadows, Taden pressed his snout up against the headless body of the Bulbo he had used to make the mask. This new form was as starved and depraved as the dead body to which it was a shadow. Opening his mouth, Taden tentatively settled his bulging fangs into the meat of the dead boar, contemplating what he was about to do. Would this break the curse of the Azhi Dahaka? He had to try, to risk the experiment. As an immortal, he was not used to working under the time constraints of impending death. Holding his breath, Taden tore into the dead pigskin with his fangs, and devoured the carcass of the Bulbo with which he had just reincarnated himself.
Bulbo Taden / Castle Town Ruins / Day 6
As he sucked the last meat off of the Bulbo's ribs, Taden looked up to see a blast of energy boom up from the ground, and a large, heavily armored swordsman of some kind stomp forth into the demonic fray. He licked the blood from his chops, and stared out into the writhing masses of ghouls the warrior waded into. Mist puffed from his nostrils in thin curls.
This warrior's style was primitive but effective. He swung and slashed his way through the ranks of the invading army, eeking his way towards the center of the mass. Taden could not tell who or what drove this undead army, but in his current state, he could neither care about it much. His stomach growled like a rockslide inside him, and he jumped forward to begin devouring the severed limbs and demolished corpses that the black swordsman left in his wake. He gobbled them up greedily, feeling a grim satisfaction as their putrid flesh piled up in his empty gut. The man called out in threatening tones, but Taden was too consumed with hunger to notice.
"Any and all possessing the fortitude and the want to meet death. Approach. Come now, to accept your demise!"
As he advanced, the fog of disease traveled with him, and a frigid gust of wind carried it out and ahead of the rampaging knight. Assuming the man moved by sense of sight, and was not totally engrossed in blind fury, he may notice the sudden chill, or stench. Soon, Taden began to feel mour nourished, even if from no more than undead pork, and his wits returned to him.
"You...do you know the one called...Maydni?" Taden called out to him, struggling to form words with his new pig's jowels.
Taur Dagnir/ Castle Town Ruins/ Day 6
The immensely armored Dagnir traveled through the ranks of the undead easily, beast after beast had been felled by his axe, the trail of bodies left in his wake zig-zagged across the decimated courtyard, yet he grew bored. Killing those that have already experienced death, was not nearly as pleasing as extinguishing the flame of ones soul, no, he much preferred to kill the living. He truly regretted his moment of weakness, when he was overcome by the two to whom he was bound. Pepperwhistle and Zeiss were ambitious men ruled by greed and a lust for power, all Taur was wont to desire was blood. For now, he would wallow in servitude until the opportunity for freedom arose, then he would exact his revenge upon the cockney one and his conniving little friend by bashing their skulls together until they popped like ripened grapes.
His masters, as he well knew had already retreated to a safe vantage point as soon as the stench of the death plague, came flowing in like the morning mist. Then all at once the mist was upon him borne upon a bone chilling gale, and he breathed deeply, savoring the aroma of death as his cape whipped in the wind. "You...do you know the one called...Maydni?" Taur jerked around violently, searching for the source of the voice, his fell upon an aged looking bulbo, "Was that you who spoke to ME pig? How very intriguing. Taur slammed the handle of his axe into the ground so that it sent out a rippling shock wave of kinetic energies and blasted back all of the approaching zombies. He would hear what the bulbo had to say before he decided whether or not to kill it. Yes, I know of Maydni, for a time I served under her...until I had the misfortune of being tricked into the situation I am now in...but why do you ask?
Zombie Pig Taden / Castle Town Ruins / Day 6
"Yes, I know of Maydni, for a time I served under her...until I had the misfortune of being tricked into the situation I am now in...but why do you ask?"
The large knight slammed his axe into the earth and the ghouls surrounding them stumbled back from the shock. But rather than press in on them again, the undead army trudged around them in a common direction, advancing on the Castle. They lumbered up the wide marble stairs that led into the City from the south gate. Taden wondered what they expected to find.
Snubbing his nose into the ground, Taden began to sulk around the towering knight in a ring. Puffs of frost fell from his wet snout, and trails of ichor drooped from his long teeth where the flesh of the undead had been twice-destroyed. The warrior did not turn to keep an eye on Taden as he circled him. He wanted to talk, but his guard was still braced. This brute knew how to stand at attention.
With even this aged bulbo's snout, Taden could smell the bloodlust emanating from the figure. His own mind was clouded over with rage, more primal than any human condition, of a boar felled in battle and risen for a necromancer's pawn. He had to kill. The knight would make a fine sacrifice. He would tear off his head and wear it as a warning to others.
Once he circled back round to the tyrant's front, Taden lowered his shadowy eyes and peered into his visor. He scratched the ground hungrily, desperately, with a slow and grinding smear that left a crack in the stonework. For the second time, Taden spoke with the dead pig's gore-draped mouth:
"...Maydni. Bring her to me."
Rito/Lucifer/Castle Town Alley Way/It has to be past noon by now
The young Rito could get a faint idea of what his new mistress was up to. She was preparing herself for a fight, and a particularly powerful one judging by the excitement he could feel pulsating from her mind's psyche. She probed into his mind with the effortless ease of one who was used to such things.
"Ahh, yes my child, what is it you wish from me. It is no matter, this man will not be troubling us for long. But then again, I already know what it is you desire. The man you desire to kill, but cannot. The ritual preventing his death so that it may be your death instead. Yes, does it frighten you child? To know that I am within your every though, within your very soul?"
The Rito hesitated. "N-no my mistress. I live to serve."
In truth, it did frighten him just how much control she seemed to have. He had always resisted Eddard somewhat, never allowing him too far into his mind. But this witch, he had simply allowed her to enter unobstructed. He had completely opened himself to her. Or had he? Was it his allowance or her power which provided her the ability to delve so deep? He could not be sure.
"Ha! A lie. You shouldn't lie to me, you know. But it is no matter, for your fears are pointless. This ritual you fear so much was very weak magic, obviously performed by a mortal. It suffices for your previous master's plans, but it is nothing compared to my might. You live in fear, my servant, no longer! It is freedom I give to you and servitude you have offered in return. You are mine now, Licifer. Now bother me no more, I have matters to attend to."
And at that moment, the Rito felt an invisible weight that he had never noticed before, or perhaps just learned to ignore, lifted from his shoulders. His insides squirmed with delight as he felt the previously unattainable moment upon him. No more waiting, no more pointless plotting. It was time.
Tore Dag Nabbit Edit
Taur Dagnir/ Castle Town Ruins/ Day 6
As the disgusting creature circled, Taur stood rooted to the spot. He was not so foolish as to believe this beast an ordinary bulbo, the trail of hoarfrost that lay in his wake was proof of that, as was the gift of speech, however garbled and emetic it sounded. The beast had his attention, so Dagnir stayed his hand, and his axe...for now. As the pig beast once again came into Dagnir's line of sight, he peered into the depths of Taur's visor. The king slayer felt a momentary chill as the skin prickled on the back of his neck, that sensation was swept away as the pig once again addressed him.
"...Maydni. Bring her to me."
A new shiver, one that had naught to do with the temperature, ran along Dagnir's spine, the eyes behind his visor flashed crimson as he spat, "Common farm fodder that you are, you've no right to command my actions. You've signed your own bounty swine!" Preferring not to wait for his foes reaction, Taur seized Tholcrist by the handle and lunged forward a huge black mass bringing with him all of his demonic might and telekinetic force. As he reached the pinnacle of his leap, axe drawn high above his head poised to come down upon the foolish pig beast in an earth cleaving slash. Taur somehow felt that, even though he wanted nothing more than to separate the soul of this beast from it's body and watch it disappear into the nether, he may have found a kindred spirit here.
Yes, maybe he wouldn't kill the pig beast, maybe he'd allow it to live on as his pet. Maybe it could even aide him in escaping Pepperwhistle and Zeiss.
Tobias Pepperwhistle/ Castle Town Ruins (at a safe distance of course)/ Day 6
"Oi, 'Ark we may 'ave a bit 'o' trouble o'er 'ere. This ruddy littl' pig monster what's talkin' wit' our boy-o...I don' like 'im. 'E ain't no more a pig den I am."
Tobias cocked his head as he took in the confrontation and relaxed a bit as Taur hefted his massive war axe and made chop the swine into bacon. "Well...mayb' we ought not...yeh..Mayb' not.. What say we 'ang back an' watch awhile?"
Eddard Langston/HCT Battle/Day 6
"Rito! Get over here and get me the hell out of here!"
While the number of undead had dwindled, or at least the assault had been lessened, Eddard had no more intentions of sticking around waiting for a skeleton to kill him.
"Yes my master, I will be right there."
Eddard thought he heard something different in the mind of his servant, almost as if another force were present, but he pushed it out of his mind for the time being. That bird was still his slave, and he still had work to do.
The Rito/Lucifer/Above HCT/Day 6
The Rito spotted his former master swinging wildly at his foes on the ground below. He pondered the idea of just waiting for his death to come naturally. If he stayed in this fight for too long, one of the undead was sure to strike a killing blow.
No, I want the satisfaction of doing it myself.
The Rito, once again heeding his master's words, swooped down and scooped up the man he most hated in this world.
"Good, now get me out of here for now."
The Rito did not respond. He merely smiled a malicious smile that Eddard could not see, but he would be seeing it soon. He spotted the alleyway where he had left his newly-acquired pets and soared down to it. He dropped Eddard from about ten feet, relishing in the sight of seeing him crash upon the floor. The Rito, on the other hand, lowered himself down gingerly.
"What the bloody hell was that? You ungrateful little rodent, I ought to put you in your box for a month for that disrespectful showing. And where in the Three's name are we anyway? When I said away from the battle, I didn't mean some goddess-forsaken alleyway! I-"
Eddard stopped suddenly as an unidentifiable creature slithered out of the darkness, coming to full form next to his servant. Eddard looked befuddled as he tried to take in the situation. The Rito pondered how odd it must look from his perspective: the servant, who usually cowered in fear, simply standing there with a malicious smile upon his face; numerous sliver creatures all joining the first one in standing next to the weak bird.
"No master, it is you who has been ungrateful." The Rito, accompanied by his minions, began to slowly approach Eddard, step-by-step.
"It is you who deserves punishment for your actions. Punishment for years of abuse, of torment, of misery. Years of me doing your bidding and not being able to stop it."
Eddard looked positively terrified now. "Wait stop! Wha-what are you doing? Think about this! You know what will happen!"
"Yes, I do. But you do not. I have done away with that silly curse master, done away with your one great chain. I no longer answer to you. I no longer have to fear you."
The sliver-creatures then swarmed Eddard, grabbing hold of his arms and legs and holding him up for the final kill. He was utterly helpless.
The Rito approached him, taking out a knife, holding it up to his master's throat, and putting his mouth next to his ear. Slowly and deliberately, he whispered. "I...want you...to apologize. Apologize for all you've ever done to me, for all the misery you've bestowed unto me. Say you're sorry."
Eddard began to sob hysterically now. "No! Please! Just stop! allow me to live, I'll be a better m-master! I-I s-swear!"
The Rito wasn't having any of it. "Say it!"
Amidst the sobs, the Rito could make out two distinguishable words.
"I...I. I'm sorry."
And then the Rito stabbed with the knife. Stabbed him in the gut and held it in there for several seconds. Eddard doubled over as the creatures all released him. Breathing heavily, the dying man looked up at the Rito, unsure of what to say. As the bird looked backed into his eyes, he felt absolutely nothing. No regret, no remorse. He kicked Eddard in the chin, sending him flying onto his back. The spot of blood was expanded now, and was beginning to soak all of his shirt. The Rito didn't care about the blood; he jumped over him and brought down the knife once again. And then again. And Again.
The Rito couldn't control himself now, he was simply stabbing continuously as blood and bits of cloth flung up into the air. Nothing else existed now. Nothing except for himself, the man he once called his master, and a very bloody knife. And as the Rito brought down his blade into the chest of Eddard Langston with abominations of the earth watching in silent vigil, he sealed his fate.
The shadows around Lucifer appeared to become solid as they darkened to a inky black color. Slug-like creatures in the hundreds crawled from every orifice of the vicinity that had shade upon it, all meeting one another, clumsily piling up into a human-like form before Lucifer and the now deceased Eddard. The human-like form grew higher and higher, nearly double the size of even the tallest of Lucifer's forces; the hulking Zora-like creature. Red glowing eyes emerged from the top of the mass as the Zora form next to Lucifer fell to one knee, in what appeared to be respect. The others followed closely as the hulking form began to fold into itself, again and again, until it resembled the size and shape of a child. The human-like shape began to compact itself, becoming more and more intricate and humanoid. Slimy blackness became grey skin and cloth, covering the body that had formed. Hair and and teeth formed in the creature's head, as a horrible bone-crunching crack rang out. The sound did not indicate a pleasant experience, as the form before them grimaced afterward. As the form finished, it revealed its gender in life.
Messenger Sliver/Castle Town alleyway/Noon 6
She glowed a dark purple and wore what appeared to be a royal dress, which was tattered and smeared with blood. Her bony, youthful frame suggested she was a malnourished child, no older than 9 in life. Her long, oddly clean blonde hair covered one eye, as the other glowed radiantly. Unlike the adult-sized creatures around, her physical form was still entirely intact, a rarity among thier kind. She cleared her throat as an innocent young voice rang from her vocal cords.
"An annoying creature, that one. We've been waiting for this moment since we first saw you, bird-creature. We assume from your hesitance to continue, that you're finished with what you meant to do.'
She effortlessly lifted Eddard's corpse, and threw him over her shoulder. She flicked her head back, moving her hair back, revealing her other eye. It was purely white, and blind. A scar ran up her cheek and past her eye. It looked very deep. She smiled devilishly as she continued.
'The most delicious part is yet to be bestowed upon you...the cruelty of irony will be this man's fate in undeath. As Mother give him her loving touch, he will become one of us, and will retain his memory from life as part of his punishment."
She began to disappear into the darkness as she finished. "But all is not well...a light-bearer walks the streets of this place...the warmth of Mother is in danger. We cannot touch him due to our nature, and Mother is rendered blind by the very sight of it. You, however have no such weakness. This is not an order, but a friendly request, from me personally..."
As she trailed off during her last few words, both girl and corpse appeared to melt into nothingness.
IC: Bulbo-Poe-Taden (say it 5 times fast) / Castle Town Ruins / Day 6
Taden's eyes flashed wide as the blackguard reared his axe and held it poised over his head. The lumbering brute was hesitating. Taden seized on his moment of idle reflection and leapt forward into the towering figure, clenching his gory maw down on his exposed underarm. He dragged himself and the knight crashing down into the icy street, then threw his weight onto the man's heaving torso to suffocate him under his putrid girth. All the while he would not release the vicegrip of his jaws and tusks on the warrior's underarms. Taden's lifeless eyes filled from the inside with blood, the empty pupils rolling back into the head as the demon boar's predatory instincts took hold. In the future, he would have to be more careful when experimenting with masks from undead beasts, but for now all he could think about was the smell of living flesh just beneath this warrior's considerable armor.
Taur Dagnir/ Castle Town Ruins/ Day 6
Grrah!! The guttural yowl that escaped Taur's lips and echoed out of his helm was as much a verbal admonishment to himself as it was a cry of pain. He had given his foe a brief glimpse of an opening and he had seized the opportunity. The boar lunged forward and tackled him, as the pair went crashing to ground, the massive war axe went clanking across the paved stones, out of reach. As the disgusting beast rooted and jabbed with it's tusks, looking for a weak spot in the armor or a means to gain the upper hand by goring Taur's armpit, the monsters immense weight pressed down on Taur's chest, his breathing became more shallow under the pressure, yet there wasn't a hint of panic in his voice when, in a faux giggle he spoke "Now that tickles little piggy. Do stop." A powder keg sized fist slammed into boars, time and again he struck the beast with all of the strength he could muster in this less than admirable position. Dagnir had every intent of turning the beasts insides into pudding.
When as if of its own accord, Taurs axe came spinning back towards them, the flat of the blade smacking hard into the pig beasts head, momentarily dazing him and giving Taur the opening he needed to heave the beast off of him and send him skidding away. Dagnir brought himself back up to his considerable height and seized the handle of his axe, taking a defensive position and awaiting the next onslaught from the zombie pig.
Tobias Pepperwhistle/ Castle Town Ruins/ Day 6
Tobias merely shrugged when Harkens gaze fell on him, "O' course I 'ad to give our boy a lit'l 'elp, what with the axe an' all, startin to look like 'e may be in over 'is 'ead with this one." Tobias moved out into the open so he could get a clear view of the battle and strode forward, twirling his cane jovially as he did so. He paid Zeiss one last glance over his shoulder as he entered the field of battle, "Shall we?"
Vykos/Castle Town Ruins/Day 6
A blight more unholy than anything he could possibly produce surged through a majority of his army. It had a deep blue smokey consistency, and he was unsure of its origin. But it made his soldiers fight harder than before against their enemies.
He collected a small sample and held it out on one of his fingers, and he could feel something that he was devoid of for centuries: mortal feeling. This one was a familiar nature when he breathed, that of malice. One reason he sought death to all was so that they could understand that undeath meant memories of feelings instead of feelings themselves.
Those who served him in undeath were full of something they had been starved of, and now they had it back, for a time. Hunger for flesh and brains was one thing. But now that they were all pissed off and enjoying the hatred, they fought even harder.
He saw what was going on between the mask-crafting necromancer and the armored warrior. This lich possessed power he'd never seen or felt, and was able to morph into a Zombie pig-beast. It was almost an antithesis of druidic metamorphosis. And that style of fleshcraft wasn't anything he'd considered before.
It wasn't anything he could replicate, but studying that when he had time in the necromancy lab would be an asset. Pulling out a small phial, he scooped up a sample of the blue mist and corked it, slipping it back into his robes. To be able to craft a new plague that conjured feelings in all life...that would change everything.
He continued to take cover amongst his horde of flesh-craving undead, launching orange and green clouds of blight towards clustered areas where his forces had the thickest resistance. This was a battle he could win, or so he thought, provided he could keep his troops away from the fellow he thought was the Scion. But wasn't the Scion female?
Vykos cursed bad Twili intel and continued to work with raw materials in an attempt to bolster his forces. And if things got worse, the Gibdos were at the ready to be released from his chariot.
Taden / Castle Town Ruins / Day 6
Taden sneered at the large knight from across the square in which they fought. Mist rose up from the stonework in sheets, shifting over the ice that threatened Taden's ill-suited hooves. The sky above them was gray, and a shadow fell over the ruins.
Storm clouds began to gather, as Taden stared into the behemoth's eyes. The blunt blow to the head had knocked him back to a moment of sanity. He tried to recall the knight's words through the fog of his enraged mind. This brute had been a servant of the one called Maydni, until he had been tricked...?
The two began circling each other slowly in the square, both giants standing high above the piles of rubble. The army of minions lumbering about them were like ants under the shadow of boulders. The knight's boots clanged into the pavement as Taden snorted and huffed, clawing his hoof over the ice. Both their eyes watered with a slow-burning fury, Taden's under a mask of gore, the great knight's under a leaden hood.
"You say you were tricked...," Taden slowly growled to the warrior, "...but by whom?"
Taur Dagnir/ Castle Town Ruins/ Day 6
Having regained his senses about him, Taur now circled the gargantuan pig beast whose size nearly equaled his own, all the while his axe was ready to cut, slash, slice and mash his opponent, his chain also was prepared to entangle, dismember and pummel the swine into submission. Yet, the lapse in the action seemed to have brought a conversational air to the beasts tone, it questioned Taur of his enslavement and his betrothal to the services of the one called Maydni, these questions stirred memories within him of a time long ago, when he was destined to marry the love of his life, yet in the end was tricked by the foul fool who wore the crown in his homeland. (He bore the crown, not because of his justice towards the people but because of the purity of his blood.) It had been long since Taur had dwelled upon these matters, and therefore the stirring up of them by the pig beast only enraged him, calling upon telekinetic powers that were no longer there because of his subjugation, Taur attempted to topple a building upon the beast. When he was rebuffed by the magicks of Pepperwhistle and Zeiss, he rethought his plan and lunged forward once again, with axe drawn high.
Tobias Pepperwhistle/ Castle Town Ruins/ Day 6
"Tha'll be more than enough big'un. More than enough." spouted Tobias as he strode confidently forward into the melee, raising a hand to freeze the imposing black knight in his tracks. Halted in mid air, Dagnir was quietly suspended, mid-leap and hovered in the nothingness, all at the beckon call of Pepperwhistles voice, making it clear to all those around them that the magical pull which he held over him was great and powerful.
"Lit'l piggy, lit'l piggy, you 'uff and you puff, yet...your power exceeds that of the common bulbo swine, an' I aks me'self, why? What makes an overgrown slab 'o' bacon so damned strong?" Tobias wrenched his outstretched palm into a fist, causing Dagnir to drop unceremoniously to the ground and fall into a pose of submission, all the while he imposed his will upon the zombie boar in his fore, hoping to encumber the advance of the undead beast and allow him to continue to speak freely. "I'd appreciate it if you stayed were you are piggy and listen'd to me. I'd 'ate to 'ave to kill such an intrig'n specimen as yerself."
Tobias drew the golden sword from the mallard head cane with which he strode and took a defensive position, "'O' course, if yeh don' wanna talk now, we can always do tha' later after we enslave yeh."
Chamdar Taliesin – Castle Town Ruins – Sixth Day
Chamdar recoiled from the revolting countenance of his foe as she revealed herself. The way she addressed him bespoke a confidence that he had seen in but a few. Her faith in her arcane and vile art was supreme. What was she, exactly? Most with whom he had been joined in mortal combat over the ages were simple men and women imbued through various means with the powers of elements or other unique traits. This, however, was wholly unlike anything that he had seen. His divine light had proven effective against her undead gendarmes, but was she right in her insistence that it would be less so against her directly?
There was only one way to find out.
”You’ll not be taking a great deal of pleasure in this duel if you allow me the first move.” Chamdar replied, taking his time, watching. Ever had he moved at a measured, methodical pace, it was his way. Having lived for millennia, he had learned the virtue of patience long ago.
He thought he saw a glint in the air, coming from the wicked wench, but his eyes could not trace them. She was up to something.
Worse though, he was beginning to detect in the air a noxious distemper borne forth on the breeze. Whence it came he could not say, but it drifted across the ruined landscape and he could feel the power in it as it approached. If he remained he would be weakened by that feverish power. He had perhaps overestimated his position in the ruins of Castle Town. He had the immediate situation well in hand, but with a wisp of plague cloud bearing down upon him he was in a bad position. He could not remain.
”You are far from the first to come forth from obscurity in times of impending doom, far from the first to try and take advantage of the distractions provided by encroaching hordes.”Chamdar paced back and forth a few steps this way and that, never taking his eyes from her. He held his staff tightly in his left fist now, the runic emblems inscribed upon the holm oak haft gleaming brilliantly with heavenly light. ”Do you know what those scavenging forces usually have in common?
“They tend to fail quite spectacularly.”
The runes blazed on his staff and he himself came alight with the power of divinity channeling through him, a gleaming beacon of pure, luminous power. He brought his staff out in front of his body and grasped it with his right hand just below his left. He called upon that power, summoned it into him, channeled and directed it through him.
It created quite a spectacle in the ruins, a towering beacon of light that could be seen by all in the vicinity. The plague cloud retreated from it as did the children of the profane Sha’Tive, for his power was anathema to them. Wholly enveloped in a pillar of incandescent light was he, Chamdar Taliesin, the Divine Hand. From within it he regarded his adversary as even she was forced to avert her eyes.
”Your failure will come, but unfortunately it will not be this day. The forces arrayed against me here are considerable.” He spoke clearly, addressing his foe in a resonant voice, its power and force carrying far. ”And I am a patient man.”
The power continued to build, swelling to an incredible crescendo. So brilliant was his light that it might blind those who looked upon it directly.
Until it began to take on a verdant hue, darkening ever so slightly into a brilliant emerald. Chamdar from within the epicenter of that dazzling light boomed one final, telling sentence: ”FARORE’S WIND!”
The towering, luminous beacon flashed, spreading across the landscape as the Divine Hand dispelled his summoned power outward over what had once been the capital. It would not destroy the perverted creatures that had taken the ruins as their residence, but it would weaken those in the area for whom the light of heaven was harmful.
And when the air cleared and the light had faded into the comparably dim light of day, Chamdar Taliesin was nowhere to be seen.
Harken Zeiss/Day 6/Hyrule Castle Town
Harken watched from a distance as Pepperwhistle strode onto the field of battle. There was a reason Zeiss was the brains of the operation, and Pepperwhistle only one of his lackeys. Proper forethought played more to Harken's strengths, and he was cautious where the former brawler was more headstrong.
"Pepperwhistle!" Harken tried to stop his companion with a word, but it was too late. He sighed. Hordes of undead, a zombie pig, this deathly plague-mist. "I am beginning to suspect we are in over our heads here."
There was a bright flash that poured over the city streets. Everything unholy recoiled from this light, and though Harken was human through-and-through, his stomach turned as the necromantic energies which he used, learned from unholy tomes, made him queasy. But whatever had caused this expulsion of light was powerful, and thus desirable. Certainly an artifact of great import.
And it was driving away the horde, which was what Zeiss needed at that moment. Pepperwhistle could, hopefully, fend for himself. He did have that Dagnir creature under his dominion. Harken pulled another Happy Mask from the collection in his pack. It looked utterly ridiculous, but that belied an inner power that far more than made up for its appearance.
[b][color=yellow][hl=darkblue]Whie Malreaux[/hl][/color]/The Caravan/Day 6[/b]
The caravan continued on its way toward Kakariko, and Whie slept in one of the carts. He dreamt of death and poison. He hungered for meat. He saw a boy, crying as he froze and the life was drawn out of him.
[b]He saw the past...[/b]
[b]Ordon Province/Four Years before the War[/b]
Blood welled up around the splinter of wood, staining his hands with crimson vitality. The face before him stared upward with shock and dismay. Whie leaned downward, nearly touching the nose of his mask to the fresh corpse's cheek.
"She is [i]mine[/i], do not come close to her again." He giggled as a thought came to him. "Or I'll have to kill you!" Then laughter broke from him in droves, and he held his stomach as the fit rode its course.
From outside, a familiar, beloved voice questioned him. "Whie? Whie, that your laughter I'm hearin'? Whacha doin' in there, Whie?"
Whie's laughter ended. He straightened in shock. [i]Not now! She can't come now![/i]
[color=darkblue][i]Lie to her.[/i][/color]
"No... I can't. Not Leo... She's my only..."
[color=darkblue][i]She will know, she will hate you.[/i][/color]
"Please... I can't live without her..."
[b]He saw the present...[/b]
[b]Day 6/Hyrule Castle Town[/b]
He rooted through the chest of a rotting Bulbo corpse. It tasted miserable, worse than anything he had ever eaten, and he had eaten some horrible things. But it was also the sweetest, most succulent feast of which he had ever partaken. A giant man in armor broke his enjoyment of the meal. He squared off against the armored beast, attempting to crack open the hard shell of this tender treat...
[b]He saw the future...[/b]
[b]Day ???/Somewhere Forested[/b]
The trees rose around him. He stared upward at the sky, past the leaves. He was growing cold. He knew, finally, he was dying. But it was worth it, after all that had happened. It was funny. They'd always say you see your life flash before your eyes, and yet here it was. One tragedy after another. It was amazing how clearly he could think as life left him. More clearly than he had thought before.
A shadow fell on him. A face looked down on him.
"Leonora... I'm sorry." She frowned, sad. He began to speak again, but a sudden impact interrupted his words.
[b]Day 6/The Caravan[/b]
The cart came to a sudden stop, and Whie fell off the bench onto the hard floor. He woke with a painful start, the daggers he stole from that woman poking him in the side. He grumped, adjusting himself.
"[color=yellow][hl=darkblue]What the hell happened? Are we there?[/hl][/color]"
IC: Poe Taden / Castle Town Ruins / Day 6
Taden eyed the nimble newcomer through a mask of gore and a haze of wretched mist. He held the armored giant aloft over his fist, the great brute who had threatened to slice him through with an axe now hung head over heels. Taden had asked the giant who had tricked him out of serving Maydni, and now he'd gotten an answer.
"'O' course, if yeh don' wanna talk now, we can always do tha' later after we enslave yeh."
He recognized the accent immediately. This braggart was from Termina. They stared at each from across the alley, steam rising from Taden's sweating flank as the other man's fist quivered under the huge knight. As they sized each other up, Taden's animal ears picked up the low tones of a distant, resonant voice.
"Your failure will come, but unfortunately it will not be this day. The forces arrayed against me here are considerable. And I am a patient man."
The voice was unmistakable. He was here, but he was making his exit. Aurgelmir was close, but not close enough. Taden estimated that he had about fifteen seconds.
"Enslave me, Terminian? Not in this world, you won't. Whatever dark artes you use to imprison this warrior, you'll soon find the Goddesses of Hyrule take not kindly to necromancers."
And then, as if on cue, the rumbling voice in the distance echoed louder.
A beacon of holy light suddenly ripped through the alleyways, washing in like floodwaters at the burst of a dam. The white light splashed over Taden and the two men, and in a flash he lost sight of what happened to his adversaries. The body of the undead boar he occupied dissolved as the black magic he used to sustain it was severed, and he found himself transparent in the alley. An ethereal Poe once more, the White Bulbo mask he had created dropped to the street, slipping through the wisps of his ghostly hands.
"That should throw them off."
Taden was completely invisible in the thoroughly illuminated alley. Until the light mage's blast dissipated, no shadow was available to give him form or substance. He could not see the two men who had confronted him, still blinded by the flash, but he knew they would not escape unscathed. He moved around in the alleyway until he was at their backs, and listened for any movements as his sight slowly returned. He regretted the loss of the Bulbo's keen hearing and smell, and wondered if any other corpses of the undead army had endured the Wind.
Sha'Tive/ Castle Town Ruins/ Day 6
Despite her previous statement, she could feeling a burning sensation upon her flesh as the light faded. She removed the rags that covered her eyes and stood back up, as she gazed into the skies, where Chamdar had been. She stood there, her eyes instinctively darting around, looking any means of a sneak attack the target could have concieved during his incredible preformance. Sha'Tive had never felt such holy power come from another single being. Upon considering that, she felt a sensation that she had not felt in years; Fear. She shivered despite the natural warmth of day, and quickly fled into the nearest shadow she could find.
"It would be best to avoid him...His powers are far too great...Greater than I could have imagined."
The slivers that surrounded her whimpered in concern, for they had never seen thier mother worry so openly about a single man. Not a single sliver had been lost in the light, but morale had been devastated, and they all knew it. Sha'Tive sat in the alleyway she found, and looked at the slivers around her, whom returned to thier humanoid forms, and hugged her. Her words were nearly breathless, but quick and fearful.
"If a mere wandering mage can muster that much power, it is no longer safe here. We must migrate."
A sliver interrupted, "But to where?"
Sha'tive looked upon the sliver that spoke. Much to her surprise, among the many faces that looked upon her, she saw a familiar woman among them.
"Constance...' She started, '...You get to be our first scout. Hopefully you will be more successful in capturing a few children in Kakariko, so we can learn more of thier fellow residents when we convert them."
"Y-yes, miss!" Constance squeaked feverishly, and disappeared into the darkness without hesitation.
Sha'Tive groaned. "Her uselessness is starting to wear thin on my nerves..."
As she finished that thought, another sliver appeared; the very one whom had gathered Eddard. The small girl spoke as she laid the corpse down.
"I assume this fool will become Lucifer's servant upon conversion?"
Sha'Tive smiled and caressed Eddard's cheek. She gently kissed him, as his skin turned grey, and a whispy dark smoke enveloped his body. Eddard's eyes snapped open in mere seconds.
"Yes,' she giggled, 'effective immediately." She snapped her fingers as Eddard's body disappeared. She smiled devilishly. Irony to Sha'Tive was as sweet as candy when bestowed upon others, especially when she could drag it out, even beyond death.
It had to be the Scion. Only a fool or a divine-appointed hero would stay in a meat grinder of chaos such as the one Vykos had helped to create.
But exiting what was left of Castle Town in the manner he did...the hero did damage to Vykos' army beyond decimation. All three unholy blights infusing his forces were carried into the sky with him and diffused. Concentrations like that were useless for what he wanted to do.
Over half of his army was destroyed, as the profane means used to keep reanimation stable were blown away. Those that were further away from Chamdar's exit and closer to their creator were spared, but lines were thinned. It would be a lot harder to hide amongst this lessened horde of hungry, walking dead.
His enemies wouldn't have as much trouble getting to him, but he didn't fear death. They would never know where his phylactery was kept. He'd just come back. And rebuild his army. Vykos' body would not be able to stand up to the punishment that others normally could take.
Vykos started to infuse the less stable soldiers in his horde with plague novas. If they were to be struck down, they would release orange clouds of caustic, dessicating vaporblight. Such a disease could cause great pain with little effort and kill with prolonged exposure.
He analyzed the situation quite carefully, hopping onto his chariot of horrors. There really wasn't a clear way to make a run for it, but if the enemy got close, he wouldn't have much of a choice. Someone had to report back to the Twili about what happened. And they wouldn't believe a fresh corpse to be the undead wizzrobe they initially brought forth.
Tobias Pepperwhistle/ Castle Town Ruins/ Day 6
"...you'll soon find the Goddesses of Hyrule take not kindly to necromancers."
These last few syllables seemed to hang in the air for an eternity as a cavalcade of thought swirled through Tobias' mind, first wonder at how the pig beast knew of his origins, perhaps another had traversed the gaps between worlds just as he and Zeiss had only a few days prior, or perhaps, this beast was more than met the eye, perhaps both. All of that was washed away instantaneously and an explosion of magic so unlike his own swept over him it nauseated him to his core, bringing him to his knees it was everything Tobias could do to keep from wretching on the spot.
As the blinding tide of holy light receded, Pepperwhistle staggered to his feet prepping for outright attack from the enormous bulbo, it was surprise then, mingled with relief when he found that the monstrosity had gone, leaving a small pig faced mask in its stead, wobbling over on uneasy legs, Tobias bent low to retrieve and examine the artifact...
Taur Dagnir/ Castle Town Ruins/ Day 6
His master or at least one of them, the brash bastard Pepperwhistle had put a halt to his progress mid lunge and set him unceremoniously into a kneeling position that showed the immense power he held over him. Held captive, unable to move, even the slightest twitch of a muscle impossible, all encumbered by the telekinetic Pepperwhistle and the dark artes with which he and the other had Dagnir enslaved, the pig beast spoke, in low guttural tones not unlike the sound of his own voice and chided Tobias for his actions and gave warning of the power of the Goddesses of this land and their tolerance, or lack thereof, of the type of magic which he commanded.
Then all went white, Taur made to shield his eyes from the blast, but the attempt was in vain, Pepperwhistle's grasp was still firm, holding him rooted in his position of subservience.. until, Tobias also, fell to a knee. The blast of holy magic must've weakened him, and in doing so, it weakened his grasp upon Dagnir's soul. Pepperwhistle, the fool, hadn't noticed, he was far too interested in whatever it was that the pig beast had left behind for he did not notice as he clambered over to it, that the hulking mass of pitch black armor he once held subjugated had also rose to it's feet. blinking several times before realizing the advantageous position he was in, Taur stifled a chuckle as he unfettered the chain from his waist.
Tobias Pepperwhistle/ Castle Town Ruins/ Day 6
The mask was white in color and held an odor of death, yet it's magical properties could not be denied, it had, assuming his assumptions were spot on, and they usually were, transformed something, or someone, into the massive undead boar that had stood here moments ago, deciding that this would make a rather fine addition to he and Harkens store of magical goodies, he made to stow it inside his robes, "Oi!" was all he could proclaim prior to being brought short and watching the mask clatter away. His feet were ripped from beneath him. A thick black chain had coiled itself around his legs, and the air was once again driven from his lungs as he was slammed face first into the cracked cobblestone street.
"Powerful though you may be Terminian," Taur spat the last word like a curse, he didn't know what the pig beast had meant by it, but it was obvious that Pepperwhistle had cringed when called this, so Dagnir used the term to his advantage, hoping to insult his prey before injuring it severely. "you are a fool." With one great heave of the chain he had the sorcerer underfoot, pressed flat to the ground by a mixture of his own strength and the sheer weight of his armored body. Tobias struggled feebly, trying to wriggle free or else push the enormous boot off of his chest, but it was to no avail. The gauntleted fingers closed around Pepperwhistles throat and lifted him several feet off of the ground until he was eye level, staring into the pitch black depths of the helmed dark guard, almost mesmerized by the crimson glow that escaped from the eye slits, again fighting back a wave of nausea that washed over him with the putrid breath of the darkguard. "'Ello mate, s'pose yeh're a right bit miffed eh?"
"I fear that you understate the obvious." Was the black knights retort with a barely contained chuckle. Tobias could feel his airway compromised under the crushing force of Dagnir's grip, felt the life in him slowly ebbing away. So this was how it was going to be then, killed by a creature under his command. He was sure he could think of worse ways to go, but none of them came to him now. Lights popped under his tightly clenched eyelids, lightheadedness spread across his body, the bout of nausea redoubled and he was sure that if his esophagus hadn't been almost completely blocked off he would've vomited all across the front of Dagnir's armored chest.
Then it seemed the stranglehold loosened ever so slightly, and he was sure that Taur too had felt it, that chill rush of power that had surged over him, re-entering Tobias' body, the power of the curse which they had placed upon the dark night now flooded back into being, only weakened by the power of the Goddesses, diminished, but not vanquished. "Tsk tsk mate, yeh should've done me in when yeh 'ad the chance, strangulation take 'o bit doe'n't it? Shame really."
The chain around Tobias' legs clanked to the ground as it fell slack from Dagnir's grip and Tobias landed perched atop the heaping pile of blackened links rubbing his throat and once again striding to the place where the mask lay swiping it up as he passed by. "Oi, big'n grab yer toys an' come! Me partner," Tobias put every ounce of sarcasm he could muster in that single word. "an' I 'ave a bit ta talk abou'."
Lucirito/Day 6/HCT alleyway
The Rito stood still, staring almost unbelieving at the being that demon child had brought him. Eddard stood there, holes all over his body from his knife, yet here he was. He stood completely stiff, staring into Lucifer's eyes, an action which Lucifer returned. Slowly, the Rito approached his former master, moving so close that their faces were an inch from each other.
"Well well well, the irony is almost palpable, wouldn't you say Eddard? Ah what was that I saw in your eyes? A flash of anger perhaps? So you are still in there, aren't you? Well...even better."
The Rito smiled deeply as he stepped away. He was going to enjoy this.
"Kneel." It was a simple command, but one he wanted to see done more than any other. The Rito watched as the man (no, he wasn't even a man anymore) in front of him dropped to one knee instantly. No objections, no hesitation. Lucifer smiled again. He knew now; he had complete control.
"Well. This should be interesting."
Sha'Tive/ Castle Town alleyway/ Day 6
In a tiny corner within her mind, she could feel two quite delicious emotions among her forces. She smiled as she felt Lucifer, whom reveled in his newfound authority, and giggled at Eddard's mixture of fear, hatred, and disgust. It had been quite some time since she had added a live host to her numbers, and had almost forgotten the emotional capacity they had. As she realized this, she looked down at herself curiously. Despite her age her physical form was youthful, soft and vulnerable, and despite the years of war she had participated in, all of her scars were self-inflicted.
As her mind wandered, she looked upon her black and white flesh, followed by her own breasts and pregnant belly. She had been under the impression for years, that she was invincible, and yet a mere lightshow staged by a Lightbearer was enough to sober her. Sneaking in the darkness of the rubble of this town was not enough protection, especially with how close her child's birth crept. She looked around at the broken brick and rubble that covered the area around the alleyway she rested in, and for the first time was disgusted by it. She rose up to her feet as her eyes glowed purple, and she connected to every single person she was connected to, and made an announcement to all.
"Listen children...be you young or old, strong or weak. Ever love and never tire, for we must rebuild! Brothers! Sisters! Uncles and Aunts alike! Be you as close as the stone and mud beneath my feet, or as far as sands of the Gerudo, or even the skies above! We must rebuild the once proud Castle of the Hylian City I stand within, to the image that fits most for the Prince to be born within! Together, when the moon wakes in the night sky, we will erect a mighty structure using only the brick and corpses that litter the ground, along with the magic that flows through our veins! As long as each and every one of us come forth, our new home will touch the skies before even the sun wakes again that very morn! Come forth bretheren, there is much to be done! Despite our fates in the end, they will know we were here! Our mark must be made!"
Harken Zeiss/Day 6/HCT Streets (of Rage)
Harken Zeiss could tell he was coming closer to the source of the blast of light. There were far fewer undead here, and in fact many of them appeared to be re-dead. Thankfully not Redeads, though. He cracked a half-cocked smirk. Random piles of noxious ash were littered amongst the lifeless rotting corpses where weaker creatures of darkness had fallen prey to the divine magic, a testament to its strength.
"Whatever this artifact is, I must have it!"
He came to a square, where several streets met, and slowed to s stop, removing the Bunny Hood from atop his head. No signs remained here of the battle that had been raging all the day long.
"This is it. Somewhere, here, that magic started. Which means, unless it has been moved by one faster than I, it should be here still..."
He began to search the square for his prize.
[b]Daurubia/Patriarch Sleeping Quarters/Sunset 6[/b]
Daurubia awoke with a jolt and sat breathing heavily still curled up in his ball. He savored the protective darkness of this state and felt that if only he could stay in the darkness for the remainder of the war, then he would be OK, then perhaps he could avoid the pressure. Rolled up, he was safe. And yet he knew deep down that personal safety had to be disregarded in such times.
Groggily, he unclenched his eyes and unrolled himself. He could not tell how long he had been sleeping from inside the mountain, but he figured it could not have been more than a few hours. Hell, to him it felt like he had been out for just a few minutes. He sat in silence thinking, thinking about his situation.
Forty warriors would not be enough, and he knew it. The Twili easily numbered in the thousands, though most were weak undisciplined. Their attack on the city should have failed all things considering. They had simply poured into a tiny hole, allowing themselves to be cut down one by one, and yet they emerged victorious. The numbers advantage simply could not be ignored.
He clawed at his brain in frustration. [i]Forty? How is this possible? How could we be so ill-prepared?[/i] But he knew deep in his heart that conscripting Gorons into the army would be folly. There had never before been a forced draft in the history of Death Mountain. Always, he had been taught that an uninspired fighter was a dead fighter, useless, forgotten. No, he could not draft, of that much he was sure.
But still, he had been completely unaware of how much the seeds of mistrust had been sown into his people regarding the Hylians. It shouldn't had surprised him so much, considering how little interaction the two groups received with each other, but still, it annoyed him to no end that the Gorons could think so selfishly in such situations. He doubted that he would get ten willing fighters to join the army at the moment.
He knew that everything rested on the goronite. With that, he could double or perhaps triple their numbers, with that, he would have an army ready to fight for their fellow Hylians. But for now, he had nothing to but to wait and pray, wait and pray.