Forest Interlude is the 7th chapter of IW Season One.
Hello Hathon Edit
Hathon, Day 2 (Afternoon).
Great Deku tree grove.
The trees whispered softly to Hathon. Currents of air caressed the tall grass and green leaves, letting bits of pollen and lightning bugs ride upon the drafts. Golden light dappled the forest floor, leaving pools of warm light in an otherwise cool ocean of shadow. If he hadn't of been able to feel the sense of urgency coursing through the woods, Hathon would probably have been pulled into a lazy slumber by the deceivingly peaceful mood.
The great Deku tree had sent a summoning to the little messenger of the forest, and judging by the events taking place, it was of substantial importance.
Urging himself into movement, Hathon sped forward, aided by the forest and his own magic. The journey to the Great Deku tree's grove was a short one.
The Great Deku tree was an ancient being, ranking as one of the oldest trees in the forest, and the eldest of all Deku trees. Honored greatly for both this, it's wide knowledge, and it's wisdom, Hathon made sure to be extremely respectful. He basked in the presence of one so great, yet felt completely at ease. The forest creatures looked up to the Great Deku tree as one might a father or mentor. It was not some supreme, exalted ruler to be humbled by, but a kind and caring nurturer.
"You have sent for me, Elder?"
"Yes, little one, the winds have carried war to us", the Great Deku tree said, sadness prevalent in his voice. "I am afraid that if we do not act now, we shall be consumed. The power of the sages is in jeopardy, some of it already having been abused. Two armies stand at our edges, and seek to burn, hack, and destroy a path through us, only to murder each other. Seas of blood and charred wood may be all that is left of them and us if we do not seek to intervene. We have our guardians, we have our magic, we have our memories. All must be done to bring order, to prevent any more harm, to defend our home." his boughs slowly swayed, creaking in a tone of lament. "I fear that the balance of the realms may soon be tipped." Two large leafs drifted from the great tree's branches, drifting to rest at Hathon's "roots". "These are warnings. Each leaf has been inscribed with a message, one each for the opposing armies. If they wish to fight their wars, they must take them elsewhere. We are the forest, and the forest is ready to defend all life and memory that it holds. Travel fast, my seedling, the forests blessing shall go with you."
"I shall do all I can to defend us, Elder... but I am afraid." Hathon looked down, feeling slightly ashamed.
The great Deku tree looked at him and smiled. "Do not worry, little one, take courage. All things work in harmony for the better, even though it may seem terrible at the moment."
Hathon looked up, his confidence returning with the wise tree's words. "Thank you, elder."
"Go now, little one, return here when you are done, your work has only begun."
With that, Hathon set his gaze, and started forward through the multitude of trees, his brethren, whose wills helped to move him on his way. With Hathon's departure, an expression of worry spread across the Great Deku tree's face. The grove darkened.
It was almost as if Hathon's words could be heard echoing:
"but I am afraid..."
Hathon, Day 2 (late afternoon).
Headquarters, Hylian Army.
The commander was busy discussing strategies with his officers, and the sentries were preoccupied in conversation with a couple of local farm girls, so Hathon was able to enter the command tent unnoticed. Nearly an hour went by, Hathon patiently waiting, still unnoticed.
It wasn't untill the officers were dissmised that the Commander noticed the small forest creature. He flinched, a surprised expression on his face.
"Whaaa?!" He composed himself "Why are you in here, unannounced, and what do you want? I have things to do and I don't need any more disturbances."
Hathon pulled out the deku leaf which was addressed to the Hylian army, and presented it to the Commander. His eyes skimmed over the message.
"We will wait three days for a reply." Hathon said.
The commander looked down at Hathon "But... but... I'll need to contact the king about this... It could take a whole week , knowing all of the things his majesty has to deal with!"
"Five days. No less." And with that, Hathon was gone, leaving the commander in an astonished and despairing state.
Hathon, day 2 (evening).
Head twili encampment.
Hathon approached the encampment cautiously, thinking that the interlopers would take much less of a liking to a native of the very lands which they were invading than the Hylians would have. Several sentries were posted around the outskirts of the camp, soldiers, scouts, spies, and couriers were continuously coming and going, and many soldiers were either milling about, drilling, or doing various mundane tasks.
Hathon quickly realized that it would be much more difficult to enter the camp than he had hoped, in fact, it would be nearly impossible for him to even get near the command tent.
Kardama worked regularly as a twili courier, bearing missives for and from the twili commanders and leading officers. The letters he carried at the moment were not high in priority, so he strolled leisurely across the large field, heading towards the encampment. He entered a small copse of trees, stopping for a moment to fill his canteen and grab a drink from a clear brook. As he was crouched over, he caught a dark shape moving out of the corner of his eye. Suddenly on the alert, he turned his head, and reached down to grab his shortsword. Nothing moved. He scanned his surroundings several more times, but all that could be seen were trees. He sighed, stood up, and shook his head, in an attempt to calm his paranoia and rapidly beating heart.
Two arrows, one right after the other, thudded into the ground at his feet. He jumped back, whipping out his shortsword, and preparing to cast a ball of energy from the limited amounts of arcane power he possessed. Before he could spot the position of the archer, the vegetation about him began to move. The trees grew larger, pressing him in, giving him nowhere to run. The sky darkened. A feeling of anger pulsed through the woods about him.
He was absolutely terrified. The charged magical powers in the trees led him to be pushed to his knees. His blade dropped from his fingers at the same time as his bowels emptied their contents. He cowered in the dirt, trying to find some way to escape from this nightmare.
Very slowly, a large leaf fluttered out of the trees, stopping to rest in front of his face. A message written to the twili army was inscribed upon it. Without his noticing, the atmosphere around him lightened to its former state. He looked down at the leaf, snatched it up, and fled from the peaceful grove, this time running towards the encampment with all sense of urgency upon him.
Hathon grinned at the sight of the fleeing twili, and smiled even more when he noticed that it didn't even bother to take it's sword. He looked around at the trees, silently thanking them for their help. And than he was gone. Now was the time to wait for any answers given, and to report back to the Great Deku tree. In this era of turmoil, there would be many more opportunities for jobs that must be carried out.
Ikaros, Let the Rhythm Take Control, Ikaros Edit
Ikaros|Hyrule field|Midday|Day 2
The sun shone brightly on Ikaros's metal bones. Her bloodstained sword was still impaled in a twili's body. She had run across a group of twilis that had just finished killing a group of hylian soldiers. The twili suffered before dying. She did not bother to bury the twili, nature did a fairly good job of it anyways. Flies swarmed on her bloody bones, she did not care about them. The lack of nerves allowed her to stand almost anything. She did not care it she lost any bones. She would just take them from her next victim and then fused metal on to the spare parts.
She did not have any senses to detect a hylian scout that ran across the gory scene. He watched her from a distance as she cut the triforce symbol from a hylian helm and fused it onto her skull. He jumped out of the tree he had been hiding in and started to run, his commander would like to know about this. There was only one thing he didn't know about. Ikaros had a friend. The ground in front of him started to swell, as if something was trying to dig it's way out of the soil. He stopped dead in his tracks, perplexed and slightly scared. A skeletal paw poked out of the ground, quickly followed by a nightmarish dog's skull. He turned tail and fled, but even as a fast runner and scout, he was nowhere near as fast as a stalhound. Okos pounced on the scout, grabbed his collar with his teeth and dragged him to Ikaros. Ikaros turned her head to the hound and peered at his prize. A man lay on the ground, beneath the dogs feet, trembling. She bent down closer to him. Yes, she had once had emotion. She remembered her mother dying, the grief, the pain. If she was alive she would have cried. She pushed the dog of the trembling hylian, and forced her only connection to her past, an old rusty triforce medallion, into his hand. This medallion was awarded to her by her master, to congratulate her for passing her test as a sheika. The man looked up at her, pushed himself off the ground, and ran away.
She was not accepted as a hylian anymore. She was an outcast.
It's A Trap! Edit
Noon 1/Fadon Woods/Kokage
Another small skirmish had broken out in the forest. A Hylian scouting party had encounter been spotted by a Twili patrol. The Hylian's were about numbered four to ten and were desperately trying to fall back out of the forest but the Twili's had circled them cutting off there escape. Two Twili charge forward to strike down the nearest Hylian, then young man they were about to cut down nervously readied his blade hoping to parry the blows but in a moment of fear closed his eyes. The others had all fell silent out of shock, out of no where a man had appeared and sliced the two Twili in half with a single blow. For a brief moment the Hylian's though there were save until they saw there there bother in arms fall the the ground in a poodle of his own blood. There was a brief still and both side contemplated what had happen, broken why all the remaining combats charged the man at once. The men smirked and he dropped his large sword to the ground, it passed though dirt as if it was air, leaving only the blood stain from those had slain behind on the earth. The agonizing screams of several men echoed though the forest.
Twenty-three minutes had passed, four Twili who had been sent to investigate the yell had arrived and were paralyzed in horror over what they found. Two Twili cut clean in half across the abdomen, one Hylian one the ground in a puddle of his own blood, the others, Twili and Hylian's who's numbers they couldn't be sure were in shredded pieces. Their remains entangled in a think nest and throned viles, it appeared as if they had all be ensnared then cut into over and over again as the large thorns grinded into there bodies until they no longer had a a recognizable form. "Wha-What the hell is this!" One of the Twili finally managed to shout out."
The same man appeared behind the for just as suddenly as before. His massive blade formed from nothing in his very hands as he muttered a single word in Ancient Hylian that the invaders couldn't understand. "Die..."
Noon 2/South Hyrule Field/Senshi
The pair had been held up for some time at a large army encampment as a result of the army currently strategy of bombarding the forest with bombs and flaming rocks from catapults. "It looks like you're not making any progress, how long do you plan on keeping this up." Senshi asked to the Master Sergent that seemed be running the catapult operations.
"Until those guys in charge say when to stop. Now if you have any farther questions you can go bother the LT, I've got work to do." the Sergent said rather sharply, not willing to give the time of day to a mercenary.
"When have you ever met a lieutenant capable of answering a question intelligibly?"
"Heh, You suddenly, I like you." the Sergent said with a slight laugh. "Ok I'll level with you, I'm sure you noticed we've been launching fireballs all day but look at the forest it looks like nothing happened. Anything spot we burn grows back twice as thick the next day. I'm telling you it ain't normal, hell I don't even think a wizard could do that."
"No a wizard couldn't create that much life, the sages have that kind of power." Senshi said trying to discreetly for information about the miss used sage powers.
"Well I don't know anything about that, I've heard weird rumors from the officers but some one like me has no business pushing those arrogant putzes for info. Besides most the men seem to think it's some forest wraith, and since those kids are the ones that gotta go in those wood I'm more inclined to believe them." The Sergent rambled on knowing full well how crazy what he just said was.
"Yeah, yeah I know it sounds crazy but any patrol that makes it back tells stories about bodies of both sides being torn to shreds and entangled in plants. Now my duties keep me in this camp so I haven't seen it myself, and I know war can make guys see funny things but when so few make it back and all of them say crazy s*** like when the find the guys who don't I give 'em the benefit of the doubt." the Sergent had become noticeably excited over the whole issue.
"True but he was never strong enough to regrow whole patches of forest over night." Senshi thought out load not cognizant of what the Master Sergent might think of his words.
"Well then we can be certain it was the Sage of Forest's powers that were abused."
"Wait, what!?" the Sergent yelled not liking what he had just heard. "what do you mean, he? Are you telling me that things real, and you know him?"
"In a manner of speaking. All I can really say is he's a forest guardian that's been around since the times when Kokiri use to live in these woods. That fact that people are fighting a war in 'his' forest is pissing him off."
"Well can you do something about it?"
"I said I knew him, not that we liked each other. Besides with the Hylian army fire bombing the forest I'm sure he's not about to do you all any favors. Friendly bit of advice, stop with the bombardment before he come out here at night time and kills you all."
"Hey I would have stopped this crap the day the plants started regrowing over night if I had a say in the matter, but that isn't the case." Senshi began walking away with a slight wave and a smile hidden under his hood. "Hey, hold on one sec." The Sergent uttered in a calm tone for the first time there entire conversation. "Look in about thirty minutes the crews at Catapults three and four are gonna get a break so you can make you're way into the forest then. Now I'm telling you this only because you're gonna promise me you won't tell anything about that wraith guy to anyone else. I rather have solders scared of superstitions then have then lose in a pointless fight cause our CO found out it was real."
"Works for me."
"Oh you're back" Mikhal said with his typical smile, "I finished making lunch, I bet you're glad I pack all these supplies."
"Eat fast then pack you're thing, I'm leaving in thirty minutes whether you're ready or not."
"Right!" he sounded off gleefully and began to scarf down his food.
"By the way, you were at the front line before they decided to have you follow me right?" Senshi pried having noticed a thing or two about the boy that just didn't settle right with him.
"Yeah that's right" he's response was barely audible thanks to his mouth being stuffed with food.
"So shouldn't you know of these guys, I haven't seen you talk to anyone?"
"Oh well you see," he paused to swallow his food. "I wasn't really popular since I'm not exactly the strongest person, or the most coordinated."
"Then why aren't they hazing you or at least giving me dirty looks."
"On come on now, these guys are professional solders, they don't do things like that." Mikhal smiled again.
"You don't know many solders do you?"
"Huh? Of course I do after all I'm in the army..."
"I don't know Senshi, this kid doesn't seem very trust worthy."
"Oh and you're one to talk."
"Hey, hey when have I ever give you two a reason to distrust me?"
"You are entity of pure evil born as a result and the remnant of a demonic spirit feeding of the anti-magic and a strong desire for power. What about you IS there to be trust?"
"Oh sure, just cause I'm descended an ancient line of demon you ASSUME I'm evil. Racist."
"You're kind are genetically predisposed to destroy the universe, that's not racism you're not a race, you're a weapon of pure malice."
"You can't prove that."
The argument going on in his head distracted him long enough that he hadn't realized Mikhal had be staring at him for some time with a huge s*** eating grin. "What?"
"You really do care about me."
"You try to act all tough but then you're concerned that the other guys might be picking on me."
"Right" Senshi stood up and started to walk off.
"Wait where are you going?"
"To take a leak." he said rather casually but couldn't help be notice Mikhal had rather strangely frozen up and started blushing.
Afternoon 2/Fadun Wood/Senshi
As the two entered the forest Senshi removed his hood much to Mikhal's surprise. "Wow you actually took your hood off, I heard you never do that."
"Heard from who?" Senshi's question sharply since having only been back in the country two days meant there shouldn't be many rumors about him yet.
"Oh um well you see when we brought you in last night I heard others saying 'that's that guy from earlier that always had that hood on isn't it." Mikhal said stumbling around his words.
"What ever..." he decided to take his answer for what it was but something was still bothering him about this kid. "It's a rule I have to follow when I enter his forest. If I take my hood off the people I'm with aren't a threat, if I leave it only he'll attack. Someone like you would be killed instantly and I'd have an annoying fight on my hands. It's a small concession I have to make due to my occasional 'moral' ambiguity."
"So does this mean you actually do care if I'm killed?" He asked some what cautiously.
"No, but I can't afford to waist time and energy fighting him right now. Beside," he said stopping before rather grotesque scene, "a kid like you doesn't really desire something like this." The forest around them reeked with the stench of rotten flesh. Two Twili laid dead on the ground, their bodies cut in half along the abdomen. A single Hylian solider was dead near them, his body still intact aside from a deep gash from his left shoulder to his right hip. The remains of their respected companions no longer resembled a humans. They hand been entangled in vines and torn to shreds by large thorns. It was no longer possible to count the number of dead. The carcasses were already at least a day old and maggots had already started eating away at them. There were also signed that some carrion birds may have picked a few pieces off the intact Hylian though the two Twili were left alone. Mikhal had grown pale and weak from the sight and putrid odor. "Just get it over with." Senshi said coldly. Mihkal no longer being able to hold back let loss the better part of the lunch he was so proud of just an hour ago. "Rather squeamish for a medic," he said half mockingly. "Let's go."
The two pressed on, Mikhal's pace was slowed since he was still a bit queasy from what he had just seen. Despite previous claims to the contrary Senshi slowed his pace to match the boys. He was being to suspect that Mikhal might be younger then his position in the army would normally allowed and he wasn't about to abandon a teenage kid alone in the woods at a time like this. Though still having only half regained his senses Mikhal had come to realize that they had been surrounded by a pack of wolves, and started reaching for his sword.
"Don't..." Senshi said, stopping him before he did anything stupid.
"But those are-" Senshi quickly cut him off with a stern glare.
"Those aren't mindless beast, so long as you don't poss a threat they wont attack. Nevertheless..." he paused briefly before shouting at the top of his lungs. Tsukiakari, Cut the crap!"
"I though you were suppose to be the subtle one. Shouting at the top of your lung in a forest filled with invaders isn't exactly normal for you, Shinigami." Kokage spoke with a calm tone showing no hit of emotion as he emerged from the tree's as if they were smoke.
"You're one to talk about subtlety, that mess back there it pretty twist be either of our standard." Senshi barked at the elemental. Both had them had been know for some what merciless tactics in the past out this was far beyond that.
"It is warranted considering the situation." Kokage spoke with out batting an eye.
"It's been along time Senshi Ma, it's good to see you again, deku." a small deku shrub emerged form the brush behind Kokage. "Perhaps you could talk some sense into my brother, deku. He hasn't been listening to me since this war started, deku."
Mikhal eye's lit up having heard Shinigami's real name. He quickly realized his expression was betraying him and tried to hid it before Senshi notice but it was to no avail. "<What's with the deku shrub?>" Senshi asked switching to the ancient language to prevent the boy from learning more then he should.
"<It was a corpse reanimate and regenerated when the Hylian's released the forest sages power. It's had some adverse effects on all the dead plant life. It brings the dead back to life, but it's empty or false in some way. It's similar to when you use your power on a redead, the body turns back into what looks like a living person, but the body is empty. You can see why I've been pushing them so harshly.>" Kokage responded with the same old words having much preferred them over the new tongue anyway.
"<That doesn't make any sense, that sage powers can't do something like that. It would have had to be cause by the twili's magic reacting strangely with it. Still besides all that, if what you say is true that shrub should be as mindless as the living dead.>
"Allow me to explain, deku." The shrub said retaining the current language, he felt it was best to not keep secrets from anyone present. "All though I fell some guild towards using the body of this poor fallen shrub, deku, I took advantage in the serge of forest to place a shard of my consciousness in this empty shell, deku. It has allowed me to keep an eye on my brothers actions, deku, though I have not been able to prevent them, deku. Also I must admit, the speak impediment has become some what irritating, deku."
"<Wait a minute, brother? The Great Deku Tree!?>"
"Yes, as I said, it is good to see you again, deku."
"<Well, this is certainly unusual but not a concern of mine. Now, Tsukiakari can you lead me to the Twili's main encampment, believe the results will be mutually beneficial."> Senshi said finally getting down to his agenda. Mikhal nearly yelled out in response but manged to remain silent.
"I forbid it, deku!" The Great Deku Tree shrub communication puppet yelled in protest. "I have sent a message to both army and neither of you will attack either of them until they have had fair time to receive and act upon them, deku."
"The Young Deku Tree believes asking if he asks nicely, the two armies will fight else where." Kokage said with a matter of fact manner. "Your conversations are wasting time, shall we go." The two ran off in the direction of the twili base camp.
"I don't get it, I though the Guardian did what ever The Great Deku Tree said?" Mikhal ask the shrub when the other two were far enough way.
"Yes, the original one that created him and created me, deku. Our relationship is some what different, deku. Still he usually heeds my advice despite not agreeing with it, deku. I fear the explosion of the sage powers has altered is temperament, deku."
"Well, maybe he'll go back to normal when the magic levels back out."
"Perhaps, deku. Now please to me a favor child, deku. It would be unwise to bring this body near Senshi when he is fighting, deku. Please catch out to those two and be their moral compass in my place."
"Now problem!" Mikhal smiled that ran off after the other two.
"Strange for a child to know such things, deku." he though to himself "Stranger still that child understood that entire conversation and made it appear to the contrary, deku. What strange companions the Ma children always manage to attract, deku. Like father like son I suppose, deku"
Mid afternoon 2/Ordon Forest/Senshi-Kokage
"So how did it look?" Senshi asked as Kokage appeared from the brush. He had waited behind at a near by pond while Kokage scouted out the Twili Base.
"Their camp is located at what use to be a farming village so to our advantage there is a lot of open space. The farmers house remain though I do not know of the residents nor do I care." Kokage paused briefly excepting Senshi to respond to his last comment. Senshi just motioned him to carry on. "There is a narrow up hill pass that may be a problem. I wasn't able to get close enough to see what they may have constructed up there."
"Most likely their command center, a narrow pass would cause any large force that broke through to bottle neck and the up hill slop would make it worse." Senshi began working out plan of attack. He may have not like the formal military or the various groups he had fought along side; however, having spent his own fighting along side them war after war and conflict after conflict had given him a very tight grasp on tactics.
"If that is the case then it should be no obstacle for the three of us." Kokage suddenly realized Mikhal was no where around. "What happened to the you soldier how trips a lot?"
"He went to go relieve himself a while ago. Though come to think of it's been a while."
"The Twili are all over the place, he might be dead."
"Maybe, but on the other hand he's strangely bashful, I think he's the type that worries if he's scene so he must have went petty far in."
"That seems unwise. It also seems uncharacteristic when compared to soldiers as I remember them. They were never as overly concerned with modesty like most of you Hylians."
"Yeah well I'm beginning to think he's a bit younger then he's claiming to be, and you know how teenagers can be." Senshi paused realizing just who he was talking to. "Oh right, you don't... You know, I can see how you can have a really skewed perception of people when you consider the only ones you've ever had contact with a soldiers, wanna-be heroes and a lot of small children. Which by the way you know we have a name for creepy adults who hang out with a lot of little kids..."
"You know for some one who despises everything about his father, you do seem to like the same off color jokes and smart ass comments." Kokage said cutting him off. Before Senshi could respond with what was likely to be a rather profane string of angry filled words and loud explosion from a near distance broke the semi-calm of the forest. "As a side, unwise." he said knowing what the source must be.
"Damn it!" he paused and turned to Kokage. "Not one word..."
Mid-Afternoon 2/Ordon Forest/Senshi-Kokage
Mikhal was surrounded by Twilli solders, he managed to quickly the scout the spotted him but not before he had manged to alert his companions. Three soldiers, a beast handler and a mage controlling a massive golem puppet encircled him as the smirked on laughed at their prey. The Twili themselves backed off deciding to let the boy have a one on one with the golem. The Golem, being twice the size of a normal man and with a spiked mace for one of its hands, loomed over Mikhal who was barley five feet tall. The boy held his stance firm as if he'd become a veteraned warrior over night. His expression was unshaken and he held his sword steady. Had it not been that he was holding up his pants with his off hand because he didn't get that chance to refasten his belt, he might have appeared to be able to win this fight.
The golem swung down at Mikhal, the boy figured he'd be able to dodge the golem but it but it was faster then he expected. He desperately tried to block with his sword but it was to no avail. Mikhal was hit with the full force of the clay beasts blow shattering his arm and breast plate. The Beast Tamer sent in his dog like creature to have its way injured by but it was intercepted by a wolfos that had come running out of the brush. The tamer ran to his partners aid with the soldiers and mage looked around in a panic. Like the Hylian's they also had come to learn of the "Forest Wraith" and had good reason to be nervous. Kokage dashed out form the tree's and cut the beast tamer in half with a single strike. Senshi lept down form the tree tops and decapitated the tree surprised soldiers with a wide swing on his scythe. The mage attempted to attack Senshi with his golem but found it was slowly crumbling apart as vined rapidly grew from with in it. Mikhal, hoping to take advantage of the mage being distracted, rose back to his feet and grabbed his sword with his off hand. His sneak attack was ruined when his falling pants caused him the stumbled alerting the mage. The caster instinctively fired a blast of his strange magic at the boy striking him in the chest. It was a weak blast but it was enough to knock him back while blowing open his shirt. Kokage made short work of the mage much to Senshi's annoyance as he wished to capture the caster for his own means.
They both walked over to check on the injured Mikhal who was now where nothing more then panties and a chest wrap to bind her breasts. "Oh, you're a female" Kokage said being complete unflapped by the revelation while Senshi was at a momentary loss for words. Despite her injuries Mikhal quickly jumped and up ran off having been discovered. "She forgot her pants."
"You know this explains a lot..." Senshi said after finally finding the words.
"More importantly she left her backpack back at the pond. Any if she had any weapons or healing aid with her they might prove usual."
Senshi remained silent for a moment contemplating the situation. He wanted nothing more then to act indifferent towards Mikhal just as he told her he would when they first met; nevertheless his upbringing had a habit of overriding his desire to portray himself as a heartless bastard. "You know we have to go after him... her."
"I see no reason for that, her combat skills were already questionable and not that she's injured there is no reason to include her in this attack."
"She probably has some broken bones and is running half naked through some fairly thick woodland so she couldn't have gotten far. Besides considering everything that's going on in these woods I cant just throw her to the wolves."
"My wolfos will not not harm her and her chances of running into her allies are nearly the same as her running into the Twili."
"You know what I meant, and you of all people know why the though of the Twili finding her concerns me JUST as much as the Hylians finding her." He said becoming noticeably agitated. He knew the quality and morality of soldiers generally declined in times of war thanks to the need for numbers over allowed to the drafting of rather unsavory characters and a decline in disciplinary action. Since Mihkal had lost her uniform and with it any Military marking she would appear as nothing more then an injured young girl running frantically though the forest. It's likely she'd meet a unthinkable fate regardless of who found her. "At worst we lose a little time patching her up and we attack at night. That might give us an advantage anyway."
"Sadly it will not, tonight is a new moon."
"Which means you'll be damn near useless, and now that I think about it if they find this dead platoon they'll be on there guard. F**K!" he was at a complete loss on how to act.
Ikaros|Edge of Faron Woods|Evening|Day 2
Ikaros smelled death. She could not "smell" things like living things did, but she could sense things. She had been walking for miles towards the stink. She walked up a hill and was greeted with an oddly familiar sight. As far as the eye could see trees stretched across the horizon. Okos dug himself out of the ground and stood beside her.
grrr GRRR GROWR!!!
What is it Okos?
Okos howled and ran towards the trees. Ikaros followed quickly. She could just make out a figure in the trees, running towards the edge of the woods. She grew curious and started to run after the figure. Okos rushed past and jumped high into the air, before landing on the creature's back.
It was a small hylian girl, not much different than Ikaros at a young age. She was injured, but ikaros had no idea what to do. She was not properly dressed, and she whimpered as Ikaros bent in for a closer look. Ikaros told Okos to find a shirt and pants from a dead body somewhere. The dog ran off, deeper into the woods. She sat down on a log, and watched the girl from the other side of the hollow.
Twice, the girl tried to escape, but Ikaros made sure she did not. Okos returned at dusk, with a suit of chain-mail and a old tunic. He had mistaken leather greaves for pants, so she would have to do without. Ikaros had to find some way to heal the girl...
Dusk 2/Faron Woods/Senshi-Kokage
After the Stalhound had brought her some cloths she realized the Stalfos was actually trying to help her. She put on the tunic and attempted to thank skeleton but ended up coughing up a little blood when she tried to speak. Her adrenaline rush had worn off after she was stopped and was learning what it felt like to have three broken ribs. She fought the pain long enough and tried to fell around to figure out where the break was but moving around was only making things worse.
Senshi and Kokage caught up just in time to see the Stalfos bring Mikhal some cloths from a distance. The timing couldn't have been better as either of them would have assumed she was being attack had they gotten any sooner or any later. "This is unusual, there hasn't been a victim of the Lost Wood curse in decades, and I've never seen one help someone." Kokage commented in confusion having only ever seen a Stalfos in his forest as a result of a lost traveler being transformed.
"No that's not a forest born Stalfos, look at it, it's golden for one thing. I think it must be come kind of experiment."
"Another person who can use necromancy besides yourself. I was under the impression that it was a lost art."
"So was I, but Nahc's decedents have a copy of our families library so the knowledge is accessible to a limited degree. Alternatively someone could have just figure it our, or we've misjudged the whole situation. Either way I have no reason to be cautious around the undead." Senshi emerged from the brush, "You know running off like that was pretty stupid. You were already injured and now you've manged to get all scratched up by running naked through the brush." Mikhal looked over and let out a weak sigh, she had reasons for taking off like she did but that all seemed pointless now. In a rare act he took of his cloak and wrapped Mikhal in it to keep her warm and provide more cover then just a shirt. He picked her up and rested her on his back to carry her piggy back style. She winched in pain as she was moved around but eventually managed to settle in a relatively comfortable position. "I'm bringing her back to Hyrule Castle." he said turning to the ornate Stalfos. "...thank you."
"If you're going to the Castle I'm staying here. I have no qualms over helping cleans my forest but what happens outside of here is of no concern to me. Though I'm curious," Kokage paused from a moment before switching back to the old tongue. "<You were conflict on what to do, then show no sign of doubt or regret after you decided what to do. What caused that?>"
"<You know it's funny, both those voices yell "Go save the damn girl." in unison, and those two freeloaders never agree on anything.>"
"<That seem odd for Death Angel, and even odder for the demon. Yours seem quite different from how I remember your fathers being.> Ah yes, what do you want me to do with the bag?" he switch back to modern Hylian having changed to subject.
"If the Stalfos wants to come with us, it can carry it. Otherwise just toss it, there was nothing in there besides a first aid kit and cooking supplies anyway. Which by the way considering you're a combat medic it would have been wise to bring a potion or two with you." Mikhal was only able to give out an irritated moan in response. All things considered she's love nothing more to have one of those, but they were expensive and the army wasn't about to make them standard issue.
Ikaros|Faron woods|Dusk|Day 2
Ikaros was surprised when a man and a tree-man walked out of the brush, undisturbed by her presence. The man knelt down and picked up the girl, and the tree man started to say something. In all the years Ikaros had been with the stallord, she had forgotten the hylian language. She knew telepathy and skeletal speech, but those might be useless against these people. She only recognized a couple of words that they spoke
Man: ---- Hyrule castle----you.
It sounded like he wanted to bring her to hyrule castle. She nodded her head as pointed to a bag on the ground. She was glad she had a way to get into castle town now, she needed to talk to princess zelda. If she hadn't have given the scout her old pendant, it would have been easy to talk to zelda. She pointed to herself, and acted talking.
Ikaros: I need to talk to Zelda.
She then tried telepathy.
Ikaros: <I need to talk to Zelda>
Night 2/Faron Woods/Senshi
<I understood you when you said it out loud,> Senshi responded telepathically. He could understand what language of the undead quiet well thanks to his talents in the that field, however speaking it was another matter entirely.
<Princess Zelda, I don't think the current King has a daughter.> He started to realize that his new companion might possess fragmented memories of its past life. <If you mean one of the past one's then I'd like to ask why. Since the Royal Family has this annoying habit of naming all their girls Zelda they only way to really figure out which one your talking about is the know the reason.>
He was beginning to wonder if the Stalfos even knew, after all if he was correct and it's mind was fragmented it might not be thinking right. He knew he might be able to help it by using his scythe but he didn't have time to that right now. With Mikhal this badly hurt he knew he had to get back to the Castle as quickly as possible. <Well don't just stand there, grab that backpack and lets go. I'll see if I can't help you once we get there.
"Senshi, I feel obligated to remind you that despite the late hour I'm certain bringing a Stalfos into Hyrule Castle would insight panic. Not to mention no one there knows you can use necromancy anymore, so you won't be able to pass this one of as you of your 'aids.'"
"Ah come on! Why'd you have to go and tell him, that was looking forward to that!"
Senshi stop and turned towards the Stalfos <Right... we've got a long walk but keep an eye out for anything you can use that will let you cover your self. Though we may just have to steal one of the armies tents and make a cloak out of it for you.>
"Oh hey I just though of something," the demon paused in vain waiting for Senshi to respond. "Remember that time the Princess's niece was accidentally married that fish boy your uncle fathered for a week. Well when you connect all the dots doesn't that mean your sister should be renamed..." "You're going shut up now." Senshi said cutting him off. With his only traveling companions being a half unconscious girl and a pile of bones that probably couldn't understand him he was free to chastise his tenants at will.
Ikaros|Faron Woods|Night|Day 2
Man:<Right... we've got a long walk but keep an eye out for anything you can use that will let you cover yourself. Though we may just have to steal one of the armies tents and make a cloak out of it for you.>
Ikaros remembered the tree man and got an idea. She walked over to a bush, pulled it out of the ground and placed it over her head. She took off her armor and unfused the metal, and then grabbed more bushed and placed them all over her body.She gave her armor to the stalhound, which burrowed under the ground. He would not resurface until he needed to.
Ikaros: <I am tree woman. I need cloak.>
Night 2/Faron Woods/Senshi
Senshi just couldn't help but stop and stair at the Stalfos' attempt at a disguise. <That's a start>
"HAHA! Oh man, you always attract the greatest people. I couldn't ask for a more entertaining host. At this rate all we're missing is a fat midget who thinks he's a fairy."
"I'm debating whether or not to tell it that the Hylian Army thinks there's a forest monster killing off both sides."
The three continued on to Hyrule Castle, making only a short stop at an army encampment so Senshi could steal a sheet for the Stalfos to better cover itself with. They managed to make good time on there way back to the castle, and thanks the being accompanied by a Stalfos they weren't harassed by any undead along the way. Much to there luck the streets were nearly empty despite the only night hour. Senshi assumed it was as a result last nights little show but it didn't matter much so long as they could move around with out raising to much suspicion.
After Senshi brought Mikhal to the military hospital however he found it difficult to convince anyone of her identity. After all, as far as anyone knew, Mikhal was a boy. The situation resolved its self rather suspiciously when a random nurse happened to pass by and recognize her. From that point on Mikhal was suddenly receiving the same priority treatment Senshi has usually only seen reserved for high ranking officers or VIPs. The whole situation made him wonder if this wasn't just a simple case of her faking her gender and age to get in the army. Regardless he had a more pressing matter to deal with at the moment.
He brought the Stalfos off to where they couldn't be seen or bothered and drew his scythe. <The blade of this scythe is one of greatest sources of shadow magic in all the world. I'm going to try and "recharge" you with it so maybe you're mind will de-fragment. I will have to be honest with you though, I've never anything like this with an undead that had memories.> The touched the tip of the scythe's blade on the Stalfos for head and began pouring a slow and steady flow of shadow magic into it's mind
Will of the Deku Tree Edit
Hathon, day 3 (pre-dawn).
'Grove of the Great Deku tree.
Hathon stood at the roots of the Great Deku tree, waiting for him to wake from his trance. Hathon silently worried for his elder, with each moment that passed, he seemed to be growing weaker. The oppressive war was definitely taking a toll upon the tree.
"Ah, seedling, you have come. I wish for you to carry a new task, I shall wait for the response from the armies, you no longer must worry about that. This war carries a heaviness with it, a heaviness which becomes increasingly difficult to combat. I can not do this alone any longer, it is a time in which heroes must arise."
Hathon nodded in understanding. "What would you have me do, elder?"
"The light spirit, Lanayru, has ordered a golem, a man of earth, to find me. He holds with him a great power, that may turn the tides of the oncoming flood. You must guide him to me. Several others travel with him, but do not worry, they are all worthy of trust. Run swiftly, little one."
"I shall move as the wind does through the leaves, elder, you have my promise."
Hathon was away, letting the forests knowledge direct him towards his target, and was out of the forest by the time the sun crested the horizon, heading over the plains towards castle town.
Day 3/Deku Tree Meadow/Kokage
"I can't say I approve of this" Kokage protested as he emerged from woods after over hearing the Tree's discussion with Hathon. "The forest is in enough chaos as it is and you wish to bring more"
"No brother I only wish to end this war. If one of the Spirits of Light believes this Golem meet me then it is for a very good reason. You must learn to stop treating everything that enters this forest as a threat."
"History has shown what happens when outside forces enter our forest. It becomes their battle ground. Clearly this is already the case yet you wish to escalate it."
"I have taken action against those fighting in our forest and if necessary I will take farther, but do not forget brother much of what they burn was once part of there land and not our woods. Matters of that destruction aside there is no reason bringing that golem here could make that situation any worse."
"You assume he will be alone."
"I see. I will admit you're concern is valid but it is a risk we must take. Therefore I want you to promise me you will not hard that golem."
Kokage paused for a moment to consider the Deku Tree's command. "I will take that into consideration." He vanished back into the forest.
Treeline Assembly Edit
Maydni/Morning 2/Twili Ordona Encampment
The flap opened behind her, allowing the early morning light to spill into her tent. She hissed at the encroachment, first turning to the assault to show her ire, then spinning back around to shield her face from the illumination. "Too light. Not dark." she muttered.
The guard released the flap after the guests had entered, and it fell to the dust, blocking once more the sun's light. Inside was a multitude of candles lighting the tent, their flames small but numerous, placed with care a distance from the shelter's fabric to prevent any unfortunate accidents. Maydni, her hair uncombed and gnarled, back slouched, was leaning over a stone slab in the center of the tent's only room.
"What?!" she barked, without even turning to face those who had intruded on her work.
"M'Lady..." stammered Captain Dalton, "It's Neon, come to report on his absence this past night, as you were told and had allowed, regarding his findings in the ruins..."
"Get out!" she screamed, now whipping her head to the side to glare over her shoulder. "I'm busy!"
On the slab was a body. No, not just a body, but a still-living person. Someone recognizable to most all Twili who had seen action in the Ordon Campaign. Shackled to the stone was General Rus of the Hylian Army.
[b][color=green]General Meado[/color], Freshly Promoted Leader of the now-ramshackle OSA/Night 2/Hylian Ordona Encampment (north of the Forest)[/b]
"A message for the King? From who?"
Meado was sitting in his command tent. It still all felt so wrong. It was only about a week ago that he had barely survived the crushing blow dealt to Hyrule's Army in Ordona. He'd lost so many men under his command then, it was hard for him to press on. But he'd led those survivors back to friendly territory, and instead of punishing him for his failure to defend his kingdom, he had been rewarded for surviving at all, and with as many men as he had. And now he was here, back at Ordon, this time sitting on the seat emptied on the Chain of Command by General Rus.
It all felt so wrong.
"Seems it's from the Great Deku Tree, sir."
And the man speaking, his aide; Fanod. The man who had so loyally served General Rus, until he was forced to leave and return to Castle Town with word of the defeat. What did this man think of his General? Well, it didn't matter. Meado would have no one else by his side at this point. Fanod was all that remained of Rus' legacy. It would feel even more wrong to not have him supporting the General of the Ordona Standing Army.
"Well, what's it say?"
"Basically, it wants both armies to leave the forest and stop causing destruction, or his... sprites? The trees themselves? It says, "If this warmongering persists within our borders, we shall be driven to retaliate. The wrath of the forest is a wrath to be feared, and it is nearing an awakening." So... the forest itself will start attacking both sides.
"Sir, we can't fight on two fronts, even if the enemy's attention is split in the same manner."
Meado nodded. He knew that already. But what could he do? The Twili couldn't be allowed any deeper into Hylian territory. They already controlled near all of the forest, it was all he could do to keep them from advancing further.
"Alright... have a runner send word to the Castle. Then start the engineers constructing fortifications and bulwarks. We must hold them to the forest. If we can't fight them inside the woods, we can at least prevent them from leaving the woods."
"Aye, sir." [hr] [b][color=purple]Maydni[/color]/Night 2/Ordona Twili Encampment[/b]
As it had that morning, so again did the tent flap open to Maydni's recluse. Unlike that morning, light did not spill through the opening. As he had that morning, Neon entered Maydni's presence with a small display of respect. Unlike that morning, she did not turn him away.
"Ah! Ah! Neon! I hear you've found some very interesting little toys! Lemme see, lemme see?" she seemed giddy, almost child-like in her demeanor. Nonetheless, Neon donned his head ornament and tossed out a few golden spheres to display his discovery. Maydni squealed in delight.
"These are just perfect! I've got a mission for you~!" She slinked forward and traipsed around Neon in circles, her voice coming out sing-song.
"Look't! We got a letter from the forest itself, and they want us to stop fighting in the woods or else they'll get all mad and attack us. That's not very fun, is it? So, we're going to listen and do what they say. Except we're not retreating, we're pushing forward! Yep, yep, yep. You, your men, and your dolls are going to sneak up into the Hylian camps so you can cause havoc there. When the main forces attack their front in the morning, you should be in position to strike from -inside- their formation! Oh, it'll be [i]real[/i] fun.
"I can't wait!" she clapped in excitement, and skipped back to the now-empty stone slab at the center of the room.
"Okeys, done with you now. You can leave."Day 2 (Noon)/ Twili Camp/ Neon Zelgadiz (dark)
After been rejected by Maydni, Neon went back to his company's "quarters". He ate, took care of his personal hygiene and went to sleep. 5 hours later, he was awoken by one of his men, apparently, Cid wanted to see him. Neon decided to go to Cid's lab again. Once in the lab…
Cid: Neon! I'm glad to see you!
Cid: I've finally finished my latest project! The machine is finally finished. I'll show you.
Cid was very enthusiastic, it was hard to believe he was the same person from the morning. The rings in the big machine in the center of the room started to move at high speed, eight purple crystals surrounding the machine began to emit a strange light (those crystals seemed familiar to Neon). Now, the machine looked like a black sphere. Cid took a vial containing a green liquid and threw it to the machine. As soon as it made contact with the sphere, it disappeared. And something appeared near the lab's ceiling.
Apparently, it was some type of portal. The vial came out of the portal and crashed into the floor, releasing it's green content.
Cid: In theory, we can send objects and people hundreds of miles away. It's not very accurate yet, and we can only send certain amount of mass, maybe five or six soldiers. The problem is… that we haven't tested it on any soldiers yet.
Neon: You won't use any of my men as your guinea pig.
Cid: I'm not interested in your men. I'm interested in you. Don't these crystals look familiar to you? I observed some interesting properties in the samples I took from your sister, and managed to replicate them. This machine was created from the crystals extracted from your sister's body. Since both of you share the same blood, you're the best candidate to test it.
Neon: You cut my sister's fingers for this!?
"Emotions cloud your judgment and decrease your battle capabilities" Neon had always believed that. That's why he repressed his emotions most of the time. But in rare occasions (most of them had something to do with Lilith), like this one, he wasn't able to do it.
Neon grabbed Cid's hair and banged his head against a table a couple of times.
Neon: You'll never speak of her again!!
Neon unsheathed his sword.
Cid: I can cure her!!
Neon froze up for a moment as soon as he heard that, and then, he released Cid and sheathed his sword. He knew Cid was lying, but that fake promise made him stop for a moment, and then realize that killing Cid would only cause him troubles. As soon as they realized that Neon was no longer a threat, some of Cid's assistants tended his wounds.
Cid: If you agree to help me, I'll treat your sister… and I'll keep quiet about this.
Neon: … Fine.
Cid: Here, put this on and then just jump into the machine, we’ll send you outside the lab.
Cid handed him a necklace with a small crystal.
Neon knew that Cid hadn't any intention of treating his sister. But assaulting one of the army's most valuable assets wouldn't land him any promotion. Neon Jumped into the machine. For a split of a second, everything became darkness, an then, he was falling. He landed on his feet, outside the lab. Everything seemed to be fine, but then, a burning pain invaded his chest. Once again, everything became darkness. When Neon awoke, he was inside the lab again.
Cid: It worked!! The fusion was a success!! Just as planned!!
Cid pointed at Neon's chest. Neon looked at his chest, the crystal was now a part of his body, it fused with his flesh and bones.
Neon: What have you done to me!? I'm infected, like Lilith?
Cid: Yes, but this is different, it won't advance.
Again, Neon felt the anger taking over him. He wanted to strangle Cid. And he was doing it, almost. Neon was standing in front of Cid, and one of his hands was around Cid's neck, but it wasn't applying any strength. What happened? Neon was lying in a table, he never got up, he never walked towards Cid, he never put his hand around his neck.
Cid: Yes, it worked indeed. Now, your body is like a miniature version of the machine, you can teleport now. I don't know how far you can travel or how many times, we need to perform more tests.
What? Miniature version of the machine? Teleport? Tests? Infected? All of that was very confusing. Neon decided to ignore Cid and get out of there. As he walked away, Cid told him something, but Neon paid no attention and went back to his bed. Less than an hour later, somebody told him that Maydni was calling for him. After clearing his mind a little, Neon went to see his commander.
Once in front of her, Neon performed a typical gesture of respect. He had never done that before any other official, he considered it like "kissing his superior's ass". But he had to admit it, Maydni's ass was a nice ass to kiss.
Day 2 (Night)/ Twili Camp/ Neon Zelgadiz (dark)
Maydni: Okeys, done with you now. You can leave.
Neon: My lady, before leaving, there are certain things that I must discuss with you, about the findings inside the temple of time.
Neon:Cid believes that after extensive research, he could replicate the metallic soldiers. After tomorrow's battle, I will hand him the crown and the spheres.
Neon: Also, we copied the text and illustrations we found in the temple, and then I took the text to Cid , he translated it.
Neon gave a copy to Maydni.
Neon: Basically, it says this crown is called the "Dominion Crown" and it allows you to control these metallic warriors. But also it tells about another item. The "Dominion Rod", it has a similar function, it controls stone statues. The interesting part is this. If you have both of them, you'll be able to control a gigantic version of the soldiers. In the lower level of the temple, there is a sphere similar to these ones, but its around 8 feet tall. If it works like these spheres, it could probably transform into a 60 feet tall soldier… That would be a very interesting BIG toy, don't you think? If you, my lady, had something like that, this war would end much faster.
Neon: But… there's an inconvenient. The Dominion Rod is under custody of the Sheikah. Which represents two problems. One, they are powerful warriors. Taking it away from them would be very difficult, but with enough men, it should be possible. Two, we don't know where to find them. But there's a solution for that, if somehow we capture one alive, we could bring him back for interrogation. I understand that Cid is also an expert in that field, he has a machine or something. And I know where to find at least a couple of them. Once we finish tomorrow's battle to advance to the north, maybe I could have your permission to go out in a mission to capture one of the Sheikah.