• Mature • Through the Boredom and Pain

Kasoria

8th of Zi'da 722

Seated on the shores of Lake Lovalus, Rharne serves as the home of the Lighting Knights, the Thunder Priestesses, and the Merchant's guild. This beautiful trade city is filled with a happy and contented people who rarely need an excuse to party.

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Rakvald
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Through the Boredom and Pain

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8th of Zi'Da 722



Some people couldn't stand the true glory of flesh revealed before them. As evidenced by the cowards who abandoned the seats at the main bar of the
The Bronze Boar
. You'd think a bunch of giant lizards, these ithecal, would be more understanding of chimeric forms of life, but no! Although, maybe that was Rakvald's Quacian background talking. He'd grown up afterall seeing the Ithecal as little more than thoughtless slave labor. Although he'd befriended a few since then, some assumptions were more than skin deep.

He crouched over his stool at the bar, nursing a tall glass of Red Aida. The creature, ensconced on its external dermis the exoskeleton of the Mantis, hardened against impact, wrapping around the tendril-like flesh limbs of the other half of its gestalt, its external sinews lending force and strength and lightning quickness to its movements.

The exoskeleton covered this thin, gray-skinned, pallid form with a dark outer shell, that spread from shoulder to shoulder, from limb to limb, but with some weak points. There wasn’t enough exoskeleton to cover him entirely. His abdomen was exposed, writhing with scaled flesh. His fingers extended into sharpened claws, as did his nasal-labial tentacles, with sharpened ends on the points of their tendrils. These could be used to draw blood, and feed upon the helpless.

His maw was a circular row of teeth, withi enough of a voice box for mortal communication, slightly obstructed by the nasal-labial tendrils that flow from his cephalopod cranium. His eyes were as blue orbs, pupiless. Over all this, he wore a finely stitched velvet robe, to ward off the chill of early Zi'da. His form looked rather spindly beneath the voluminous robe even, and he appeared emaciated for all... whatever the hell gestalt form the mage had taken for himself.

There was an agitated air upon the tavern that night. Word had it, the second annual All-Tavern's Tournament had been canceled, dashing the hopes of many hopefuls, contenders, and champions alike. The 23rd break of the trial gave way to many more brawls than usual even, even in the rowdy atmosphere of the Bronze Boar. Rakvald glanced around the bar. Renfreud wasn't scurrying about him, as he had been for sometime. Perhaps placated by recent concessions to teach him more of his own secrets. Perhaps eschewing the brawling and rowdy atmosphere of the ithecal-run tavern he'd entered. Renfreud too was more Quacian even than Rakvald, his blood ran even deeper into those stones than his own. Even with Rakvald having spent several lifetimes there, when he'd been a Lothar.

The red aida wine was beginning to take its toll on Rakvald's hazy mind. He imagined a frown, and a stare across the room. A little man, dark of eyes. Rakvald imagined he cast a frown in his direction. The ire stirred by his half-drunkenness prompted him to get up off his stool, and shuffle over toward the little man.

"Hey, Half-pint." He gurgled behind his nasal labial tentacles. "Yer gotta problem?"



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Last edited by Rakvald on Thu Feb 02, 2023 5:57 pm, edited 1 time in total. word count: 525

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Kasoria
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Re: Through the Boredom and Pain

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"Bugger me, Kas, did you see that one?!"

"Aye, hard t'miss it..."

Kasoria hoped the sheer, ambivalent boredom in his voice would give the younger man pause about asking stupid fucking questions, but alas, Fagan was too engrossed in the scene to notice. With a quick bray of a laugh he jerked his head back to the wooden railing and gazed at the two figures in the pit. This was a world better than the Crescent Arena back home. There was what seemed like a league of air and distance between him and the fighters there. You could make them out, but one always felt... disconnected. As if you were imagining a fight from a story or a play, seeing it before your eyes. The tiny details that seemed so large on paper or on the stage were lost. The endless din of thousands of Etzori, too... quite the distraction, too.

Fagan granted that it was noisy here, too, but the fight? He could reach down and touch them if he wished. He could make out very bruise, hear every labored breath, feel the crack of knuckles on flesh and bone and the splitting of flesh as a nasty one connected. The Etzori's eyes grew wider as he stared down, betting scrip in his hand. He'd heard about the brawling in Rharne, but to see it up close...

"That's it! That's it, lad! With your elbow!"

Fuck me, I hope he don't listen to him.

A quick glance in the pit told Kasoria an elbow wouldn't help the blue-smeared fighter Manclin had bet on. Too short range, especially against the big Lotharro with a longer reach. He'd have liked to watch longer, see if his predictions would come true in detail. He couldn't help his whirring mind pick apart stances, attitudes, conditions, forms, techniques. It came easier than breathing, and twice as fast. But he was still on the clock, and spared naught but a trill before resuming his vigil over the Etzori ambassador.

Of course he picked now to become some enamored with exploring the... how did it go... the "cultural peculiarities of Rharne", didn't he? Kasoria had a new Spark in him, hard-won after many a bloody night in the dark of this city, and thus far these nightly excursions had seen Kasoria on bodyguard duty almost every night. He wanted to spend his night tapping into this new power he held, one that allowed his to manipulate the world around him... but where was he instead?

The Bronze Boar. Latest in a string of shit-

He paused as he scanned the area around them. Something squirmed and shuddered wetly in the hood of a... "man", sitting at the bar. Kasoria's eyes hovered over the sight for a moment longer. Everything about the figure seemed off, somehow. Proportions, angles, attitude... mostly the outline. As if a child's rendering of a man had been dragged into flesh had a cloak draped over it. But the face was something even worse.

The head turned to him and he looked away. Fucking idiot. Didn't need to be drawing any-

And he's getting up... and walking over. Fine work, old man.

When the thing stopped and growled out its accusation, "he" dropped from his mind entirely. Nothing seemed human about it, save the use of Common (and that was hardly a qualifier). Eyes entirely blue gazed down at him with unabashed, predatory interest. This slithered and swayed under its robes. Chitinous growths and patterns that belonged on an insect or a scuttling sea creature glinted when candlelight caught them. It towered over him, too, more than most did.

Kasoria had seen horrific things before. Monsters that Lissira had vomited into existence to serve her. Corpses given agency and malicious purpose, rotting even as they tried to kill him. A thing from the darkness between the Emea and the waking world, ripping its way from that non-space to try and kill him and that Quacian Llyr. Along with the countless ways that mundane mortal men butchered, tortured, slaughtered, and mutilated one another, and honestly, he didn't know if there was anything so horrifying or hideous as what base-born folk could think up when they simply hated enough.

Yet he had never seen this, and he felt his throat tighten as he looked down at him-

Half-pint. Very original. Wanker.

His wide eyes suddenly lost their nervous sheen. Just another tosser, then. Weird bloody mouth or not. Kasoria held up his hands in peace, remembering his assignment and his company that night. This wasn't Etzos and he wasn't on the hunt or with just himself to worry about. He couldn't rely on his reputation nor sheer, unquestioning brutality to solve the problem. His eyes flicked around and already a circle was clearing around them. Like barflies the world over, folk knew to steer clear when that electric, feral charge of a brewing brawl got into the air.

"Nuffin', friend," he said, voice that odd place between guttural and lilting that marked him as an Etzori. "Jus' mindin' me man' an' watchin' the fight. Ain't lookin' fer a quarrel."

That was the first half. The second half was summoning one of his other Sparks, letting a touch of Brilliance shine from his eyes for a moment. Illuminating them from deepest black to shining blue-white for a moment... before pulling it back in. The other one, the oldest of the trio within him now, was already spreading out across his frame. Abrogation energies burrowing into his limbs, ready to spring into life... and oldest of all was the skill and ken he'd been crafting since childhood. One that examined the creature with the same quick, cool tally as he had those two sweating piles below them.

"Ain't no problem fer youse 'ere. Save one yeh make."
word count: 997

Appearance

  • Habitually dressed in boots, breeches, tunic, and cloak.
  • Long hair down to the shoulders, usually swept back or in a rough ponytail
  • Prefers a trimmed beard and mustache

Mutations

  • Star-shaped scar on each palm.
  • Air around him seems to thicken and become more turbulent the closer a person gets to him.
  • Pitch black eyes, from tear ducts to the pupils.
  • Arms from shoulder to palms appear as if heavy chains are wrapped around them.
  • Wisps of black smoke constantly drifts around his body, forming the rough outline of a cloak. The more agitated he becomes, the thicker the layers get.
    Note: the torch-motif medallion Kasoria wears negates the visible effects of this mutation.
  • Roughly circular pattern across breastbone, constantly transforming, and resettling
  • Sunken, closed eyes in the back of hands; they open when stared at
  • Skin takes on the tone and quality of whatever material he's just Transmuted
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Rakvald
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Re: Through the Boredom and Pain

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Rakvald often had been accused by his wife Ildred that he had a inferiority complex, which often bubbled to the top of any situation, especially when he perceived someone looking at him ‘funny’. It’d led to many a ill—advised brawl, where Rakvald left worse for the wear, but with enough pieces of flesh sometimes to turn into totems. He regarded the small but strangely fearsome man in front of him. He was cloaked in some unnatural shadow, and there was the sign of something off about him as well.

It wasn’t until he turned around, revealing the lights in his eyes that Rakvald realized. “Fuck me, mage? Or one of them Immortal marked?” He squinted, his flat blue eyes narrowing over the man. He sipped the last of his red aida, and laid it on a nearby surface.

The smaller man mentioned problems, and that it was up to Rakvald to make the first move.

He looked from the small man, to the young one with him. “You’re Etzori.” He said, and he would know, having visited there upon a time, the accent was fairly thick on the older, shorter man. “Say… you wouldn’t have met anyone by the name Llywelyn…”

Rakvald often wondered what had happened to Llyr, his initiator. Mentor wasn’t the right word, as the young man hadn’t taught him very much about the magic he instilled in him. Rakvald had attempted to sniff him out, both in Idalos and in Emea, but to no avail. He was beyond his reach apparently.

“Nah, prolly not.” He waved a clawed, four-fingered hand. That said, he turned his gaze toward the younger man with him, his tentacles reaching subconsciously outward in his direction. “So… Let’s say we set up a brawl, you and me, in the ring. No magic, well maybe for patching up after.”

“You manage to tear through my hide with a punch or kick or bite before ten bits… I’ll pay you a good purse.” Here, the cephalopod glowered over him, his blue eyes widening, “You don’t manage it in ten bits? And you tell me the story of how you learned magic and what kinds.”

“Ain’t got much to lose, you.” Rakvald said, leaning back against the bar. “Sup to you, if you wanna make a quick profit.”

Rakvald was a curious creature, and though he lacked the edge of a clever speaker, he knew what he was about. Magic in all its forms fascinated him, and he wouldn’t mind finding out more about mages that existed outside his own sphere.

Behind them, the two brawlers were about winding down, one of them reaching dominance and ready to knock the other in the dirt of the ring. It’d be over soon. “What do you say? Don’t tell me to toss off neither, I can be persistent.”




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Re: Through the Boredom and Pain

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How the fuck is it managing to talk with those... things, in the way?

That was the dominant thought occupying Kasoria's mind as the thing with an insect's bearing in a skeletal form and the face of a boneless sea-beast spoke to him. In quite colloquial Common, too. Fluent and comfortable, like a market trader making a sale, with no sign that it was anything but learned since he could speak. But how he spoke it... that made Kasoria pause. The tendrils around the bottom of his face writhed and pulsed as he did, yet the words just forced through them. Gurgling like a man choking on blood, yet the creature never seemed in discomfort.

If anything, it seemed amused... and curious.

He nodded to the first question... but not to the second, though it took much for his face to remain neutral. Llywelyn. Llyr. Zarik. A man with as many names as he had faces. A mage and a Quacian noble. Mortalborn. Son of Chrien. Businessman, when last he'd checked. But before any of those things, and after, Llyr was his friend. Fates, but they'd had to come so close to killing each other before he realized that. The Raggedy Man blinked a few times more than necessary; the only sign of his confusion. Maybe the thing noticed; maybe it was too enamored with that grape to notice.

Is he from Quacia? Is he a Becomer, like Llyr was? Wait... is that actually what he looks like, or-

Then the offer was made, and Kasoria's eyebrows arched as if on strings. That was not how it worked in Etzos, he had to admit. Either you cracked the cunt and started off, or you circled back later when he wasn't looking. But this was Rharne, and oh, how they loved their brawling. Kasoria's eyes narrowed as the stakes were made, and he felt they were uneven. Money didn't mean much to him: the fuck was he going to buy, anyway? Etzori instinct for a good deal aside, he was hardly a man of property or mercantilism. His needs were simple and his business dangerous; living to hoard coin was not his goal. Yet the creature would know about his greatest strengths, how he came by them... so much information. All things that could be turned against him by an assassin.

How chance was this meeting?

"Oh, I say, now that is a capital idea!"

That paranoid thought had barely a moment to settle before a voice that sounded like an entire boarding school's worth of Etzos nobs brayed into life behind him. Rakvald would likely see the little man's eyes close for a second in exasperation before turning around, keeping one eye on the Quacian. Fagan Manclin was grinning as he took in the showdown, jerking a thumb towards the pit.

"I rather like that, Kasoria! I'm sure our friends would, too. The Raggedy Man of Etzos, versus..."

Manclin's eyes took in just what Kasoria did, and his imagination shuffled back somewhere safe and warm.

"... the... Shadow... of Rharne! I'm sure they'd lay good odds." The ambassador leaned forward a little, somehow managing to sound conspiratorial while surrounded in a bar. "Come on, old man, be a sport. It's hardly to the death and it'll get our name around."

"Point a' us comin' out wisnae tae get our name about... sir. An' if I'm down there, I ain't protectin' youse, which is the whole fuckin' point of me bein' here-"

"That... will not be an issue."

A new voice joined the conversation. Attached a towering reptilian figure. No, more than towering. Nigh-on eight feet of scales and claws and beady black eyes. Daveth had taken an interest, and taken offense, apparently. The two guards at his flanks looked like children next to him, but were easily Rakvald's size. The Ithecal gestured to them as he spoke.

"My men will ensure the safety of your friend, Kasoria." He didn't question how the Ithecal knew his name. Even if it wasn't known across half the world now, he'd heard that Daveth made it a point of pride to be impeccably well-informed. "We would be honored to host such a spectacle."

Fuck. There goes that plan.

Scowling, Kasoria turned back to the... whatever it was. He turned the offer over in his head again, and then he smiled. Ah. Yes. That worked. All he had to do was find just the right angle, and he saw his advantage. But he still wanted just a little more of an edge, so as he offered a fist for Rakvald to bump, he held it back a touch and spoke.

"Keep yer purse. Jus' tell me more about dis Llywelyn fella. Heard his name in Etzos. Never met the man though. As fer yer stakes? No magic. Either of us. An' if yeh win, I'll tell yeh what Sparks I got in me."

He almost felt sorry for the two nobodies in the pit. Their epic brawl had come to a close and hardly anyone was cheering the winners. Fickle and eager, the crowd had already shifted its attention to this brewing battle between a slippery abomination... and Rakvald. Kasoria offered his fist again, and jerked his head towards the now-empty pit.

"After youse."
word count: 905

Appearance

  • Habitually dressed in boots, breeches, tunic, and cloak.
  • Long hair down to the shoulders, usually swept back or in a rough ponytail
  • Prefers a trimmed beard and mustache

Mutations

  • Star-shaped scar on each palm.
  • Air around him seems to thicken and become more turbulent the closer a person gets to him.
  • Pitch black eyes, from tear ducts to the pupils.
  • Arms from shoulder to palms appear as if heavy chains are wrapped around them.
  • Wisps of black smoke constantly drifts around his body, forming the rough outline of a cloak. The more agitated he becomes, the thicker the layers get.
    Note: the torch-motif medallion Kasoria wears negates the visible effects of this mutation.
  • Roughly circular pattern across breastbone, constantly transforming, and resettling
  • Sunken, closed eyes in the back of hands; they open when stared at
  • Skin takes on the tone and quality of whatever material he's just Transmuted
User avatar
Rakvald
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Posts: 782
Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2018 11:17 pm
Race: Mixed Race
Profession: Degenerate Elite
Renown: 520
Character Sheet
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Wealth Tier: Tier 10

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Re: Through the Boredom and Pain

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Rakvald’s voice, echoed from another totem, was an artifact of a former totem, now twisted into the haphazard amalgam of mer and lotharro. It was really all that remained of who Rakvald had been, before he started down the path of arcane discovery. Of his prior lives as a Lotharro. He’d given up his Immortality at the slippery altar of the Twins of Vri, and as turned more toward the profane methods of extending his life span. Namely through embracing the power of Graft and Becoming.

But for now, Rakvald’s brain was too addled by red aida to really notice the confusion and hesitance on Kasoria’s face. Add to that he never was the best reader of people, and Rakvald hadn’t a clue that this strange mage might know Llyr. Only the fact that he was a mage, and he was etzori, factored into the chance that he might’ve met his friend.

“That’s the spirit!” Rakvald’s echoed voice boomed with joviality as the younger man supported his idea for a brawl. “Hmm, Shadow of Rharne? Nah that’s horrible billing, and entirely too dramatic.”

A voice shouted from the crowd of the patrons, as they suggested possible names. “How about Clovenface!”

“No! Noodlearm.” Another voice suggested, referencing the fact that his left arm was resembling a mass of tentacles.

“I know!” Rakvald said, holding up a spindly clawed finger. “Rakvald the Godeater! Did you know I ate Vri once?”

“He got better, and poisoned me for it but… Yeah. I just plucked him up in his caterpillar form, and ate him.” Rakvald snickered, liking that moniker. He could get used to this style of self-promotion. And if it garnered interest in the Grafting arts for Rharne, that was all to his benefit.

“Keep my purs… well alright but… tell you of Llywelyn? Oh shit I’m not supposed to mention him. Fuck. Well… I guess it’s okay I can tell some stories, but that’s really all I got. Boy keeps a tight lid on his activities, and hasn’t been seen in ages.”

The information just seemed to flow freely from Rakvald, like dribbling tentacles from his mouth. It probably wouldn’t take a great deal to get him to share more, as Rakvald enjoyed talking, especially about someone he considered a friend. Besides, what was the harm? Llyr could avoid his own initiate, his scent wasn’t anywhere to be found. What were the chances that this strange mage would be able to find him?

“Alright deal. I’ll tell you some stories if you beat me. And... no magic that I ain't already using. Fraid I can't do much about this body unless you want me to change right here and now? Besides, breaking the hide of this totem is part of the challenge...” So saying, he rapped his mishapen knuckles against Kasoria, and then nodded, lowering himself into the ring as the crowd began to chant.

Rakvald had a flowing starting form. A form of brawling that had been tempered by brief tutelage from the Da’riya masters of Desnind. It was suitable to the totems he tended toward, focused more on grappling and redirecting force. And of course, there was little of guile or deception about Rakvald’s method of fighting. He was no better at concealing his tactical motives than he was at keeping his mouth shut.

“Right, let’s do this!”

Rakvald shouted, swaying his arms back and forth in flowing pattern to keep moving.

“Let’s see what ya got Etzori Mage.”



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word count: 602

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Re: Through the Boredom and Pain




Clever bastard.

Kasoria knew he should be impressed the (literally) slippery twat had (figuratively) slithered his way around his wording. But that would come later. Right now he was too busy being annoyed. He couldn't tell what kind, but this thing reeked of magical energy, and his Spark could sense it. What kind, he wasn't sure, but if he was this chummy with Llyr, he'd bet on Becoming. The art of morphing and twisting your body to become... well, anything, really. That fucking mountain with scales he'd fought in the Orm'del had been one, millenia ago. Clearly Rakvald was just a man who... liked to test the terrestrial extremes of the discipline.

Fine, you tried to be a clever clogs and he burned you. Ho hum. Get to it, old man.

Fine advice, and not much left to do. The crowd was stoked like a fire and by the time Kasoria followed Rakvald down into the pit, there wasn't a free seat or space up top. He looked up and found Manclin, predictably hemmed in by the Ithecal owners guards. The lizard himself stood behind the human, easily peering over him to enjoy the show, and cover his back at the same time. Kasoria figured he could trust Daveth to his word, if only to preserve the reputation of his establishment. The other Etzori was hardly overawed by it all. He was taking and placing bets, making new friends by the moment. Brushing off all warnings of "non-house" gaming by shrugging them all off as "friendly wagers between friends".

Kasoria couldn't help but smirk. Etzori. Plonk them wherever, and they start sniffing out a profit.

All right. No more.

The human turned to his opponent, and the roar of the crowd dimmed within his mind. The sight of them, the smell of beer and wine and sweat and dried blood and smoke and everything else was replaced with... just the blood. The scent of it soaked into the sand of the pit. His world shrunk down to the space the two of them would brawl upon and between. Nothing else would suffice. He was up against an enemy larger, stronger, likely faster and thicker in the bones and flesh than he. Not only that, but he wasn't expecting the big sod not to cheat, either, once Kasoria showed him what he was capable of. He would need every ounce of focus.

It took him about a bit to relieve himself of his cloak and the heavier weapons strapped to him. The smaller ones would stay put: he didn't want to keep the crowd waiting. But that was more than enough for him to size Rakvald up. He wasn't hiding anything, for sure. He couldn't see an flaws in his stance or his movements... but he reminded himself he didn't know what qualified for weakness in a form such as this. Although he did recognize... yes... that fancy-arsed Sev’ryn shite he'd seen before. Didn't strike him to be nearly as useful as Ki'Enaq.

Time to test that.

The Raggedy Man rolled his head around his shoulders and squared up to the squid-man. There'd be no bell, nor referee. The rules had been set and terms agreed to. The moment one of them moved, the hourglass would turn over, and they'd have ten bits. In no hurry, Kasoria bent his knees, slid his right foot back, settling into a crouch. Brought his arms up and as he started tightening them into fists-

Bigger. Stronger. Tougher. Faster.

So? Be sneakier.


-burst forwards towards Rakvald, leading with a one-two left-right combo. Land or parry or avoid, Kasoria would follow up with a left kick to the middle of Rakvald's right thigh. Quick, precise, nasty, aiming to either break bone or shock the nerves there into numbing the whole limb. Two blinks of an eye. Maybe three. He was getting old, after all. But that didn't mean he planned to lay down and let some squiddy sod beat him today, and he reminded himself even as he lunged forward to keep his guard up, and be ready to disengage.

Ten bits is a lifetime in the pit. Don't rush. See what he can do. Just don't give him all the momentum.

The crowd bayed and it was a distant and forgotten thing. Kasoria's black eyes shone with a smile his grim face did not share, and the brawl began.
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word count: 762

Appearance

  • Habitually dressed in boots, breeches, tunic, and cloak.
  • Long hair down to the shoulders, usually swept back or in a rough ponytail
  • Prefers a trimmed beard and mustache

Mutations

  • Star-shaped scar on each palm.
  • Air around him seems to thicken and become more turbulent the closer a person gets to him.
  • Pitch black eyes, from tear ducts to the pupils.
  • Arms from shoulder to palms appear as if heavy chains are wrapped around them.
  • Wisps of black smoke constantly drifts around his body, forming the rough outline of a cloak. The more agitated he becomes, the thicker the layers get.
    Note: the torch-motif medallion Kasoria wears negates the visible effects of this mutation.
  • Roughly circular pattern across breastbone, constantly transforming, and resettling
  • Sunken, closed eyes in the back of hands; they open when stared at
  • Skin takes on the tone and quality of whatever material he's just Transmuted
User avatar
Rakvald
Approved Character
Posts: 782
Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2018 11:17 pm
Race: Mixed Race
Profession: Degenerate Elite
Renown: 520
Character Sheet
Character Wiki
Plot Notes
Templates
Letters
Point Bank Thread
Storybook
Wealth Tier: Tier 10

Milestones

Miscellaneous

Events

Re: Through the Boredom and Pain

Rakvald watched Kasoria for a few moments, wondering if he was stalling, or just busy taking in the scenery. Rakvald was interested in the mage’s capabilities as a mage, not just a combatant. He’d almost regretted saying ‘no magic’ for the fact that he might get a glimpse of what an Etzori born mage was capable of. In a land filled with all manner of nasties, and citizens every bit as tough as their environment, Rakvald was expecting a lot.

So when Kasoria merely stood there, taking in a breath, he almost worried that he’d have to make the first move. It was a proposition that he wasn’t altogether comfortable with, especially given his defensive ground-fighting style.

He muttered loudly, for all to hear as Kasoria continued to analyze him,
”Aww come on. I’m not gonna bleed myself. Not here anyway.”
He pointed his tentacled left arm in his direction, the slimey digits pointing their index at the smaller man.
“Hit me already!”


So when Kasoria burst into a freakish show of speed and accuracy, targetting multiple points on Rakvald’s body at once, he was taken by surprise.

Rakvald let the one-two land, one after the other. His exoskeleton held, but concussed powerfully against the flesh beneath, carrying the shock of his strikes into his solar plexus.
Damn sneaky fucker…
Rakvald’s thoughts turned sour as he realized he wasn’t dealing with a pipsqueak with more bark than bite.
C’mon Rak, get your ass in there!


Kasoria kicked the right thigh, and landed once again. It would be clear to Kasoria now that Rakvald had no intention of evading attacks or rolling with them. He genuinely was curious to see if this short mage could make him bleed, and so he would.

But first, he wasn’t going to make it easy.

He lurched forward into the kick, rotating his right leg to absorb some of the force of the kick at least, and then pivoted into a grappling position with Kas.

Rakvald, unlike Kas, was revelling in the attention of the crowd. Up among the stands, the calls of ‘God Eater’ and ‘Squidude’ were flung around with abandon. At least he had them on his side. It was becoming swiftly apparent to Rakvald, though as he lurched forward again and again trying to grapple and get a bead on Kasoria that he had his hands full, even with the apparent age of his opponent, they moved with all the surety and agility of a jungle cat.

Rakvald snarled, and it came out as a blubbering breath. Despite his somewhat clumsy attempts to close the distance, his legs were still longer than his opponents. An advantage he could leverage to close he distancce and get into Kas’ business.

Any further attacks against his core or his legs were intercepted or at least given an attempt at a defense with his arms. He would let them land if he couldn’t get his arms in the way, but otherwise his focus was on limiting Kasoria’s space, so he couldn’t strike.

He wanted to get a rear choke, ideally. However hard or strong this little guy was, he still needed blood to go to his brain. That was the key to putting him out of commission. If he took much more punishment, in more points on his exoskeleton than his gestalt could withstand, he’d lose this bout.

He didn’t want to let his newfound fans down, afterall.
word count: 589

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Kasoria
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Re: Through the Boredom and Pain

Image


Hells' Cunt, what is this fucker made of?!

The thought rattled through Kasoria's mind then was forgotten a moment later. Only the lesson remained: whatever thus squiddie fuck was made of, it wasn't flesh. At least not on the surface. Kasoria ground his teeth as his knuckles came close to cracking, impacting hard on the taller creature's chest. It felt like punching a brick wall wrapped in rotten bacon. There was some reaction from Rakvald, at least, though he wouldn't call it pain-

-and the kick did little better, slamming into his target and still finding naught but bone under it. Nothing delicate or vulnerable to damage. Then the monster was on him, closing the distance while his foot was still coming down, grabbing him in a grappling hold-

A swarm of squirming, dripping, drooling tentacles fluttered in his face as the creature snarled. Kasoria felt fingers like stone grab onto his shoulders, weight pushing him down, keeping him at a distance. Out of instinct he returned the gesture as well as he could, but lacked the reach and the height and-

So make it! Fuck are you whining for?!

Holding on hard, Kasoria suddenly dropped his weight, skipping a crouch entirely and going down to one knee. Given the difference in size, that would be enough to pull Rakvald forward and down and, crucially off-balance. Kasoria wouldn't give him time to adjust before he exploded upward again-

-forcing all that power into his unbent leg, trusting to his strength to give him enough speed-

-slamming his other knee into Rakvald's bent over chest like an uppercut, aiming for that same spot his fists had landed on before-

And while we're up here...

If nothing else, Rakvald's grip on him would be weakened... and he'd be airborne. Not for long, but long enough. Long enough for the Raggedy Man to grab the squiddie by the collar of his tunic, yank him forward and slam his head down at the same time, aiming to crash his crown into the only soft part of the monster he could see: his inhuman face, just above the writhing mass of tentacles. Of course, the would depend on how much damage his knee could inflict, and if not...

Fuck it. Cross that bridge when we come to it.
word count: 393

Appearance

  • Habitually dressed in boots, breeches, tunic, and cloak.
  • Long hair down to the shoulders, usually swept back or in a rough ponytail
  • Prefers a trimmed beard and mustache

Mutations

  • Star-shaped scar on each palm.
  • Air around him seems to thicken and become more turbulent the closer a person gets to him.
  • Pitch black eyes, from tear ducts to the pupils.
  • Arms from shoulder to palms appear as if heavy chains are wrapped around them.
  • Wisps of black smoke constantly drifts around his body, forming the rough outline of a cloak. The more agitated he becomes, the thicker the layers get.
    Note: the torch-motif medallion Kasoria wears negates the visible effects of this mutation.
  • Roughly circular pattern across breastbone, constantly transforming, and resettling
  • Sunken, closed eyes in the back of hands; they open when stared at
  • Skin takes on the tone and quality of whatever material he's just Transmuted
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Rakvald
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Re: Through the Boredom and Pain

It was at that moment, when flesh collided with exoskeleton, that Rakvald knew, he'd done good. He'd been longing and wishing to test the combat viability of his exoskeleton, derived from the traits of an Ascended Mantis. Now he had his answer. It was damned good, and the pain it inflicted on those attacking him was obvious. His next opponent ought to invest in some boxing gloves or foot wraps, perhaps. Or maybe harder boots.

As it was, he was buoyed by his success at enduring these blows. Although they hurt like the devil, despite his inscrutable exterior (how did one tell the emotions on a squiddy face?), they hadn't drawn blood. Not on the outside anyway. Rakvald would assess the damage later, upon further inspection, for now it was time to really go on the offensive.

He began swinging his tentacle'd left arm in a sort of whip-like fashion at Kasoria, keeping him low to the ground. He was successful in that, as the shorter man ducked low, but what Rakvald hadn't been expecting was the master pugilist and asssassin to use himself as a lever, and force him over and around.

The move by Kasoria was successful, and led to the kick into Rakvald's center of gravity. For a few moments, he managed to hold the blood in, drinking it down. It took most of his will power, as his spark began to rouse itself. The spark wished for blood, for souls, and it now was tasting the essence of Rakvald's soul. The mage recoiled at the realization that his spark almost wanted to flay its host. The horror of the realization distracted him enough, that the shorter mage took that moment of hesitation to grab him by the collar, and power the hard part of his head into a headbutt with the squidman's face.

Not good. This would make it easier to bleed him, if he even could bleed. But Rakvald knew his designs were not trustworthy until tested. He had to know just how much punishment his exoskeletal hide could take. How many points of contact were needed to break it, for instance? Animal bites usually scratched him at least, by dint of several teeth piercing at once. But individual bladed and bludgeons did very little to his exterior condition

Rakvald felt the hard bone against his soft flesh, cushioned in part by the cartiliginous structure of it, and even losing a few teeth out of his mouth. Though he sucked desperately on any blood that begin to drip out of it.

Rakvald couldn't do any other than to fall back onto his rear from that, thrown by the power of the blow. How did such a little guy pack so much power? Rakvald wanted to test his flesh, to explore, and understand. But first he had to keep his blood from showing. He sucked on the blood in his mouth, but he knew he couldn't do it much longer before he'd spit it out, and give away his failure.

Cries of dismay rose from the crowd, that had been betting on the inhuman creature, as they began to see he'd lost the advantage, and maybe for good...
word count: 545

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Kasoria
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Race: Human
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Re: Through the Boredom and Pain

Image
He'd have given a lot for a blade. Something small but keen, capable of slicing and sliding between joints and bone. Even something heavier, cruder. A club or brass knuckles or something similar. Anything that could crack bone like eggshell and let whatever sizzled underneath come flowing out into the light.

A lot. Something. But not everything. The fight had been going on for less than a bit, and that was more than enough for Kasoria to take his measure of this weird new opponent. He was fearsome, to be sure, and he had some training... but he clearly hadn't been tested for a while.

Don't count on that for long. Fucker'll adapt quick enough.

The squiddie started getting back to his feet... and Kasoria smiled thinly at a new sound. Not the wet flapping and aimless, spittle-sopping sucking he'd heard before. This seemed more... active. As if he was sucking back a drink before he spilled any. His black eyes narrowed a fraction but no, he couldn't see any red or black or green or whatever the fuck this thing called blood. Nothing obvious... and frankly, spitting blood didn't really count. It had to be his hide that Kasoria broke through, not his insides.

But it's progress.

He waited long enough for Rakvald to get up to one knee, then as he started pushing himself the rest of the way up he moved-

-darting in low and from the side, right arm already cocked back for a haymaker, clear as day-

-a feint, intended to draw Rakvald's eyes and guard, and once he was in reach he dropped like a stone instead, high punch forgotten, going for-

-a sweeping kick, aiming to take Rakvald's legs out from under him again-

Nope.

Kasoria had taken his measure. He was not to his level, but he was not a fool. He had talent, training, but he had not fought one as steeped in Ki'Enaq as Kasoria. More importantly, he'd relied on his size, his terrifying visage, and his bony skin for too long. So he would likely recognize a feint for what it was... but perhaps not two of them. And if he did, if he moved to intercept or block Kasoria's sweeping kick, he would find-

-the little human had already retracted it, legs bent under him, exploding up like he did before-

-but not up into a rocketing, diagonal flying knee. Instead his body pivoted hard to the side, hands up in a guard, but leg spinning up into a roundhouse kick-

-aiming for where Rakvald's ribs should be... but if he was bent to block his second feint, it would be his head instead. Either way, Kasoria wasn't holding back. He'd need all his strength to either splatter blood from that pit of squirming worms Rakvald called a face, or fracture the bony skin and crack a rib or two. He wasn't worried about his own shin: going on fifty arcs of training, working, and general brutality to his own body had left his own bones like carved granite wrapped in flesh and muscle. Could Rakvald say the same?

About to find out...
word count: 543

Appearance

  • Habitually dressed in boots, breeches, tunic, and cloak.
  • Long hair down to the shoulders, usually swept back or in a rough ponytail
  • Prefers a trimmed beard and mustache

Mutations

  • Star-shaped scar on each palm.
  • Air around him seems to thicken and become more turbulent the closer a person gets to him.
  • Pitch black eyes, from tear ducts to the pupils.
  • Arms from shoulder to palms appear as if heavy chains are wrapped around them.
  • Wisps of black smoke constantly drifts around his body, forming the rough outline of a cloak. The more agitated he becomes, the thicker the layers get.
    Note: the torch-motif medallion Kasoria wears negates the visible effects of this mutation.
  • Roughly circular pattern across breastbone, constantly transforming, and resettling
  • Sunken, closed eyes in the back of hands; they open when stared at
  • Skin takes on the tone and quality of whatever material he's just Transmuted
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