[The Hollow Sea] Things that go bump in the night

A whole lot of swash, an' a little bit o'buckle!

Stronghold of education and learning, this fortress is in one of the coldest areas of Idalos and home to many knowledge seekers in a variety of disciplines. However, unknown to most, below the city are those who suffer for the sake of science. While all are welcome, not everyone will be treated as they expect.

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Vega
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[The Hollow Sea] Things that go bump in the night

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20th Ashan, 718
It had become something they did, the two of them, each evening. They sat above deck, her wrapped in blankets and with her legs in front of her and him next to her with his arms around her. Looking at the stars, talking and being quiet, laughing and flirting and tormenting and teasing each other. Just being themselves and, by every Immortal, they needed it. Every night, since the first one when Mixiebelle had turned up and professed her love for Arlo, the two of them had taken this time to just be them. Tonight, since the winds were still, they were playing cards. Of course, she knew that he knew how to play the biqaj game, Stars, because they'd laughed together about it after he'd come back from a night out with Huw, her cousin, who had not so much cheated but just not mentioned all the rules right at the beginning. Thanks to the link that he shared with Lyova, and the fact that he'd left his little companion behind to look out for her, Vega had been able to help Arlo turn the tables on Huw in a way her eldest cousin really wasn't expecting. It had earned Arlo some significant respect, it must be said, and obviously Huw had told the twins his brothers, too.

"I'll call Exchange," she said, having dealt and then looked at her hand with a despairing feeling. "You can 'ave these two, an' I'll take these." She slid two cards over to him and chose two from his hand randomly. "Hmm." She still couldn't go on her basecard, as her hand was all in a different backcolour to those. But then, it was the same backcolour as his and the two she'd pulled from his hand were also that, so she put down a card on his basecard, blocking one half of it. "When you do that, block with the first move," she explained, "it's called a half gambit. I dunno why, but there you go." She pulled a card from the deck and looked at it and then looked back to him. "Your move, Puffy." She hadn't called him that since the Tower, when his hair had stood on end, but as she'd glanced up she'd considered that he really did have a tendency to just let it all go where it wanted, his hair. She envied him that, there was so much of hers that there was no way she could do so. Therefore, it was tied back.

It was a still, quiet and peaceful night and the Hollow Sea was calm like glass. Her silver blood reflected in the moons light and Vega seemed quite content. "Eva?" Joq'an called,"Where did you put the dog bowl?" Vega's eyes shifted colour immediately and as she called back "In the cupboard with the food, Papa!", she simultaneously signed to Arlo in common sign. Small gestures, hard to see. "We're under attack." That made sense, they didn't have a dog, after all. "I have told you, at least five hundred times, it does not live there! You and your cousin, both!" He called, coming out from where he had been below decks. Vega signed again, "Both ships being attacked." She'd tell him the code later, she promised herself, although she was sure that he could work it out.

Earlier, before the sun sank, Vega had been practising her bow. Which meant that it was there, next to her. She still couldn't see anything, but as a scream pierced the night from the other ship where, ironically, Huw was visiting his brothers and Fi her sisters leaving Arlo, Joq'an and Vega alone aboard the Wanderlust, an arrow sailed past the seated pair and embedded itself in Joq'an's thigh. He let out a yell and Vega grabbed her bow, notching an arrow and cursing that all she could do was sit and fight as four of them boarded the ship, foregoing the cover of darkness in order to attack. There was one with a bow who held back and three with swords who rushed forward.

Well aware that there was nothing she could do other than use her bow, Vega notched an arrow and aimed, then loosed it at the bow man among their attackers. He was the most danger to them all and Arlo would already be dealing with the other three, she knew. So the one with range was first and he went down with a gurgle as she shot him clean through his throat. As she did that, she prayed to Xiur that her bow be true and her aim good, that she be guided by his light and Vega felt a strange, almost tingling sensation through her hands.
word count: 821
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Vega's skin has a reflective metallic sheen with a red glow. Her eyes still swirl biqaj colours, but one colour is always bright red which glows like fire. She has a bright red glow in her chest, situated directly under the mark of a heart (Daia mark) in the middle of a glowing silver dragon on her chest (Xiur). She's unnaturally warm to the touch
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Arlo Creede
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[The Hollow Sea] Things that go bump in the night

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Arlo had always enjoyed being out under the stars. In fact once he'd left home for the open road, he'd slept out in the open beneath them so many times that he'd long ago lost count. It was the magical seeming aspect of the heavens that had always fascinated him, not the science or physics behind it all. Arlo didn't much care what they were made of or any other such nonsense. So far as he was concerned, too much science mucked up the mystical nature of things. Lately, he'd been learning to rely on the positions of the moons, stars and sun for navigational purposes. But they were no less magical. Even more in fact out here at sea, lying underneath them with Vega.

She glowed brighter out here at sea, and so did he in his own unique way. Though he couldn't be sure whether that was because it was darker out here in the middle of the ocean, or if it was caused by some sort of divine communion. Didn't matter, he guessed. All the better to admire her when she was lit up like that. And Arlo grinned as he reclined on the blanket beside her, and she tutored him at cards. "You think he'll ever figure out we've got a secret weapon?" he asked. Vega knew, surely, that he was referring to Huw and Lyova, who'd been thrilled to have been included in the game.

But then suddenly albeit briefly, Arlo was left confounded by the exchange been Vega and her father. Frowning, he'd already pushed himself up into a sitting position, simply for want of finding a little sense in it all. What dog bowl? Did her father mean cat. For the kittens Arlo had sneaked on board. But no, that wasn't it. It was a code of sorts and he frowned deeper, suddenly grateful he had both his bow and his sword close at hand. And not just one ship under attack, but both, and Arlo was up on his feet.

His first concern was Vega, and he wanted to quickly scoop her up and carry her below decks. Except that it was too late. A scream pierced the night, coming from the cousins' boat, a 'whooshing' sound sailed past his right ear and Joq'an howled in pain. As for Arlo, he turned on a heel towards the source, keeping himself between it and Vega, and drew his sword. There were more of them, and in fact more with swords than bows. Three rushed in, but rather than let them get any closer to Vega, Arlo charged right back at them, blade at the ready.

Arlo's bow was usually his weapon of choice. It wasn't his only one though. Over the past arc or so he'd made dramatic improvements in handling a blade. But more so, it was his acrobatic ability that gave him a measurable edge. There were three of them after all, and just one of him. Not great odds but the least he could do was make a dent so as he drew nearer the charging men, he sprung up off his feet and twisted his body into a sort of half somersault that would allow him to round kick one of the on comers, and when he landed again, he slashed out at another caught completely off guard.

That last one hit the deck like a stone while the first tried to shake off the confusion. That one was perilously close to the rail, off balance and opting for his fists, Arlo surprised the man with a sucker punch that topped him over backwards, back over the rail, and down into the drink with a loud splash.
word count: 634
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Vega
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[The Hollow Sea] Things that go bump in the night

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"The only thing Huw is ever gonna figure out," Vega replied with a soft grin at him, "is 'ow to tie his shoelaces." She grinned at him and reached out to put a piece of his hair behind his ear. Distracted by the doing of it, instead she twirled the hair around her finger and then let it go as she smiled at him, her eyes showing her emotion even if her words didn't. "Yer lookin' like you need me to come at you with some scissors, you are. Trim the locks." Moving, she stroked the back of her hand against his cheek and smiled contentedly before turning her attention back to the cards. "Play cards, Eva," she grumbled to herself. "Focus on strategy an' don't get distracted by the 'andsome, glowin' man loungin' inches away from yer itchin' hands, Eva." Her grin was genuine as she tried to decide which card to play next and for all that she wanted very little more than to have her hands on him and his on her, Vega would have to admit to being relaxed and happy.

Both of which were short lived.

Because her father called and Vega signed to Arlo what that meant. As he stood, unthinking and on instinct, Vega moved to do the same and cursed in Rakahi as her body told her no. So, she grabbed her bow and prayed to Xiur that she might be some use, please, some use and just to keep her people alive this night. The sound of an arrow swooshing past them led to her father falling and Vega frowned in deep worry and concern. But her first concern, in this moment, was Arlo. Her bow had felled one of them, but there were three on him and she saw him rush in and she knew, she knew he was doing it to protect her. But it put him in so much more danger, so much more than he needed to be in and he should be protecting himself, she considered as she raised her bow to take the shot. When this was over, broken legs or no broken legs, Vega promised herself, she was going to punch Arlo Creede into next Ashan, not this one.

He took on two of them and, should they survive this, Vega would tell him just how damned impressive he was. And what a madman, come to that, but his acrobatic manoeuvre meant that he kicked one and then used his sword to slice through another, but there was a third and Vega saw him, knew that he was going to hurt Arlo and knew, also, that she still ran the risk of hitting Arlo if she shot. But it was a risk for her hitting him and a certainty that the pirate, for such they were, would. So, she prayed that her aim was true in this starlit night and suddenly, her bow shone with star light and emitted the trajectory of the arrow. Vega knew, in that trill, what had happened and why and she thanked Xiur even as she loosed the arrow which took the third one, the one Arlo hadn't been able to stop and who was coming in to kill, straight through the eye. "IN YER FACE!" Vega yelled, frustrated and fearful for Arlo, for her father and for those on the other ship.

That meant that the three of them, the four of them in fact, were down and Vega couldn't help the "Arlo!? Are you a'right?" She wore an expression on her face which might look like fury to anyone who didn't understand what terrified looked like on her. "My father, Arlo. The others!" The other ship, in fact, looked like they had a lot more on them and Vega concentrated, turning her bow that way. The beam of starlight shot from it again and she released an arrow. Over on the Waking Dreamer, the pirate who was currently trying to drag Shon's wife to their boat fell like a sack of potatoes. "There's too many of 'em, Arlo. Can you get across?" It would take an enormous feat of acrobatics and she didn't actually think it was possible.

But yet, she didn't doubt that he could do it.
word count: 721
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Vega's skin has a reflective metallic sheen with a red glow. Her eyes still swirl biqaj colours, but one colour is always bright red which glows like fire. She has a bright red glow in her chest, situated directly under the mark of a heart (Daia mark) in the middle of a glowing silver dragon on her chest (Xiur). She's unnaturally warm to the touch
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Arlo Creede
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[The Hollow Sea] Things that go bump in the night

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Before the night's peace had been shattered, Arlo had grinned, but had also vowed that Vega would never get close enough with her scissors to snip away a single hair on his head. It was unruly, resistant to any sort of order and he liked it that way. If not for his hat though it did tend to get in the way when a stiff and chaotic wind came along. Or invading pirates for that matter.

There was just one thing that on Arlo's mind above all others. Get himself between Vega and the men who'd clambered over their rail. She was armed and was more than capable with a bow. But there were enough of them that it risked one or two slipping through the cracks. Not if he could help it and Arlo did what he could. He was able to dispatch two in fairly quick succession but it left both him and Vega opened up to the third. And Joq'an as well if he hadn't managed to get himself to cover.

It was only out from the corner of his eye, as he turned on his heel, that he spied the strange glowing of Vega's bow and the beam of light. In a split trill he believed he knew the source. And he grinned as she found her mark and dropped the third of the men. There wasn't time for much more than that when she pointed out what was happening on their sister ship. "I'm alright," he said, assured that she was as well, and he quickly located her father and helped him limp to where Vega was seated.

"I don't know how you're doing that," he said when she fired on the Waking Dreamer. "But keep it up and I'll do what I can." He could get across. Arlo was sure of it and without a second thought, sword on his hip and bow at his back he scrambled up the rigging in order to take hold of a rope he cut loose about a third of the way up. Looping the end around his arm, he pushed himself off from the mast so that he was swinging free in a outward sweeping arc.

Too many times around and he wouldn't have any rope left, so just once in order to gain the momentum he needed. and because his makeshift tether still wasn't quite enough, he had to rely on his own momentum and acrobatic ability to fling himself into the air at just the right trill in order to make up for the distance. As it happened, when he landed he managed to collide with one of the pirates, who went staggering back in surprise, toppling over the rail then and into the water.
word count: 473
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Vega
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[The Hollow Sea] Things that go bump in the night

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"Schnizzle my snoot, Papa, that's a lot of blood!" Joq'an shook his head, his hand clamped on his thigh where the arrow was still embedded. "I'm fine, Eva. Shoot," he said and his eyes swirled with worry at the sights and sounds from the ship across the way from them. Evidently there were a lot more of the pirates attacking the larger vessel and there were the distinct sounds of fighting from there. Vega looked at Arlo, her eyes moving over him to check that he was alright, and she nodded. "Be safe," she said and she continued to train her bow on the attackers of the other vessel. "Keep pressure on that leg, Papa, please? I don't wanna be an orphan, I'm already 'avin' a difficult life." She grinned as she spoke, though her eyes were trained on the Waking Dreamer and Joq'an laughed. "Not to-trial, Eva."

Her attention was all on Arlo and she felt her heart soar with him as he seemed to fly across, not jump. Vega would have been impressed if she didn't love him, but since she did it was more than impressive to her. He landed on the Dreamer and there, he could see that there were many more pirates than there were Lei'nox clan. Huw and Fi were standing side by side, between them there were three of the pirates. Huw had a cut down his left cheek and a deep gash down his right arm. Fi was holding her own and seemed uninjured, but Huw was doing his best to protect her, quite obviously. The twins, Shon and Reese were fighting and there was the most trouble. There were six of the pirates (there had been seven but Arlo had just landed on one) and, while three of them were keeping the twins occupied, the other three were trying their best to grab on to and drag off their new wives.

Who, it had to be said, seemed worse than useless in a combat. However, they screamed.

There were at least four bodies that Arlo could see, both of the twins were injured, silver blood covered them both, though it was hard to tell how bad things were. They were fighting furiously, but neither of them were as good as Arlo. As he landed, a beam of starlight lit one of the pirates attempting to drag Shon's wife by the hair and an arrow felled him.

"For the love of U'frek's right butt-cheek, but why don't those two useless women fight?" Vega asked her father. "Fi does. Are they so bored of the twins a'ready they fancy bein' slaves?" She didn't turn her eyes or drop her gaze, simply took aim for the next shot. Joq'an didn't answer, just watched and cursed the fact that watch was all he could do.

Meanwhile, that meant that Arlo had eight potential targets. Three fighting Huw and Fi, the three on Shon and Reese or the now-two who were trying to drag off the two new members of the clan. The women were in states of total hysteria, the pair of them and were in imminent danger of being lifted up and carried to the small, very fast ship which had pulled up on the far side.
Last edited by Vega on Wed Apr 11, 2018 5:50 pm, edited 1 time in total. word count: 562
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Vega's skin has a reflective metallic sheen with a red glow. Her eyes still swirl biqaj colours, but one colour is always bright red which glows like fire. She has a bright red glow in her chest, situated directly under the mark of a heart (Daia mark) in the middle of a glowing silver dragon on her chest (Xiur). She's unnaturally warm to the touch
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Arlo Creede
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[The Hollow Sea] Things that go bump in the night

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Trouble seemed to be everywhere Arlo looked on the deck of the Waking Dreamer. It wasn't any surprise that when he'd dropped in, he'd collided with some of it and sent it toppling overboard. Ordinarily he wouldn't have hesitated, abandoning relative, if temporary safety for the sake of, in this case, swinging into the fray. Except that it had meant leaving Vega and her father more vulnerable. But he also knew that the numbers of pirates meant that the threat would spill over again if it wasn't stopped here.

Whatever Vega was doing with that bow of hers was working, and he'd ask her about it later. For now though, quarters were too close for his own bow to do him much good. Arlo drew his sword. It seemed that all of them...Cousins, wives, in-laws were struggling. But some of them worse than others. It was the wives, the two panicking, wailing, utterly useless wives in Arlo's opinion, who were in the most immediate danger. What did the cousins see in these women with no backbone. Well Arlo could think of something, it must be that, but it wasn't the time. That was where he headed.

He caught one of their tormentors off guard, and once the man saw him coming, he flung one of the sisters at Arlo, using her as both an obstacle and a shield at once. But it only slowed his momentum a fraction of a trill since Arlo ducked around her and let her stumble on past. And there she stayed, crumpled wide eyed at the base of a water barrel rather than retreating farther for safety sake. The pirate however hadn't retreated but had his sword at the ready as Arlo advanced. Blocking, slashing, jabbing...the man wasn't a poor fighter by any means. But when he swiped fairly low, Arlo's acrobatic skills stepped in and he hopped in the air as if skipping a rope, and in the same motion, sliced through the man's throat.

One down, one to go and that one had made progress, having dragged the other screaming sister with him. As Arlo used the same approach as last round and charged, the pirate also did much like his mate and swung her around to use her as a shield. Arlo looked straight into the girl's eyes and whispered "Duck!", and as soon as she did, Arlo thrust his sword past her, just a hair's breadth from the side of her throat, and straight into the pirate's heart. The man's shock and subsequent collapse meant the girl was let loose suddenly and collapsed in Arlo's arms. "If you won't fight back, then get your sister and stay below deck," he said, nudging her towards the other.
word count: 476
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Vega
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[The Hollow Sea] Things that go bump in the night

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As Arlo struck at the man holding the second wife, Vega winced as the high pitched scream of terror filled the air pouring forth from either Lily or Sian. They were too shy to meet her, so she didn't know what they looked like and frankly, at this point, they were coming to her or they weren't meeting. That, she knew herself well enough to know, had nothing whatsoever to do with her legs. "Cassion's crispy cracklin', but they're gonna 'ear her in Viden. Or Ivorian," she muttered and concentrated on getting the shot she needed. Arlo was taking care of those, "no one would notice if I skewered 'er, you know," she mumbled and next to her Joq'an gave a slight snort. Vega was worried about her father, he'd lost a lot of blood and he was just.. sitting. It wasn't like him. So, she kept up the grumbling and chatting, as much so that she knew he was awake next to her.

As Arlo took out two more with his sword and the screaming women screamed, Vega saw him nudge one of them over to the other, though she couldn't hear what he said. The woman stumbled forward, falling on her knees next to her sister; Vega didn't pay her, or her screaming sister, any more heed at that point because they were irritating her. She watched what was happening, just for a trill and then, figuring that two to two was better odds for both, she shot again. A beam of starlight and then, one of the two fighting Huw and Shon dropped. Then, the same with one of the pair fighting Huw and Fi.

Which meant that, between the pair of them, they'd evened the odds in fairly quick time. There was still fighting, but now it was more one on one and the tide had definitely turned, though there was no doubting that Arlo could still be useful over there.

However, no more arrows came over as Vega felt her father's weight shift and she turned just in time to see him slide on to the floor. "Papa!" Vega gasped and automatically reached to grab him, but her legs were splinted together and held out in front of her and she cursed as she felt pain flare. "Papa! Papa, wake up, damnit!" She let herself fall to the side, just enough so that she was laying on the bench where she and Arlo sat of an evening. Then, using her arms she pulled herself along the bench, making sure to be careful with her legs as much as she could be. It hurt, but she grabbed on and utilised her upper body strength to get her head parallel to her father's. He was laying on the ground and Vega gasped in shock at just how old he looked. "Papa? Papa!" She had no idea if he was alright, but he was breathing and he wasn't twitching. Both of those were good things, she thought. Laying there on her front, as Joq'an started to wake up with a grumble and a deep moan, she was half hanging off the bench looking at him with worry on her face.

"Eva. Eva, child, what are you doing?" Joq'an asked and she smiled at him with sudden tears in her eyes. "Papa, you passed out. Are you ok?" She reached down and stroked his cheek as he grabbed her hand in his and kissed it. "Little bud, I am fine. It's just blood loss." She held on to his hand, just for a moment. "We've got to get you up, Papa." Looking at him, she focused on getting herself up, pushing herself to sit so that she could look at Arlo and where he was. Meanwhile, Joq'an started to sit up and Vega shook her head, ripping the sleeve off her blouse without thought or pause. "Stay down there, Papa. Use this, here, bandage yer leg. Tie it tight as you can, but not too tight. Can I 'elp you?" Joq'an did as he was bid. The wound was deep and mostly it was shock which was causing him bother. Vega looked around, desperately searching for Arlo to make sure that he was alright.

If a pirate had got him, she determined, she was going to kill him.
word count: 738
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Vega's skin has a reflective metallic sheen with a red glow. Her eyes still swirl biqaj colours, but one colour is always bright red which glows like fire. She has a bright red glow in her chest, situated directly under the mark of a heart (Daia mark) in the middle of a glowing silver dragon on her chest (Xiur). She's unnaturally warm to the touch
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Arlo Creede
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[The Hollow Sea] Things that go bump in the night

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With all the carrying on the cousins' two wives were doing, Arlo would have thought they'd been stuck through some limb with a smoldering hot blade, with the promise of more on the way. And yet, he suspected that the only physical injuries they'd collectively gotten so far was a scraped knee and a broken nail or two. The only immediate danger left to them, so far as he could tell, was him giving into the temptation of scooping them up and tossing them overboard. It was hardly the time for trial time wishing though. There were more immediate threats afoot.

The twins, Fi and Huw still had their battles to fight, but thanks to Vega and her bow, the odds had evened out some. And he was just thinking of giving one of them a hand, when he spied one of the pirates he'd kicked overboard, clawing his way back over the rail by way of a rope ladder that head been dangling in the water. "Can't have that," he muttered, and climbing up onto the rail himself, he sliced through another rope and with the end of it wound up in one hand, he got a running start along the rail and then launched himself out into a wide sweeping arc around the rails and rigging.

And just about the time he got there, the pirate had pulled himself up on the rail and was hauling himself over, most of his weight still relying on the rope. Which, as Arlo passed by, he sliced clean through with his blade. It would have been comical, the surprised look on the man's face when he was cut loose and plunged back into the sea without a lifeline this time. But by then, Arlo had swung past and landed back on the deck. It was only that rope that had saved the pirate the first time, being unable to swim. And so his lifeline was gone for good.

By then? The others had won their fights and Arlo was left with being able to get back to Vega. And he did, in the same way he'd left and when he dropped to the deck of their schooner, he sheathed his sword and ran to Vega's side. "You alright?" It wouldn't be enough for her to tell him she was, it was only seeing for himself that convinced him. Her father was injured too, but he'd certainly live and it appeared that all in all, they'd all come out unscathed.
word count: 428
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Ellen'wyn
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[The Hollow Sea] Things that go bump in the night

Vega

Comments

"Schnizzle my snoot, Papa, that's a lot of blood!" Laughed out loud with that one. A great thread with really nice action. I enjoyed every character and the conversations through the whole ordeal.

Points

EXP: 15 points

There points may not be used for magic.

Renown: +10 for killing pirates and saving lives

Knowledge

Skill Knowledge:
Ranged Combat: Bow: Firing while seated
Ranged Combat: Bow: Firing in the dark
Ranged Combat: Bow: Using Nalos ability to make a tricky shot
Gambling: Stars: Rules of Exchange
Gambling: Stars: Blocking your opponent
Gambling: Stars: A half gambit
Nalos Ability: Shooting Star: Provides a means of aiming
Nalos Ability: Shooting Star: Works well at a distance
Strength: Pulling your own body weight while laying down.

Non-skill Knowledge:
None

Loot & Consequences

Items: None

Injuries/Overstepping: None
Arlo

Comments

I envy Arlo. He's such a neat character. I'm biased because I'm a Cassion fan, but still. Great job here. Very exciting all around.

Points

EXP: 15 points

These points may not be used for magic.

Renown: +10 for killing pirates and saving lives

Knowledge

Skill Knowledge:
Acrobatics: Leaping during combat
Acrobatics: Twisting half somersault
Acrobatics: Pushing with your legs for maximum aerial momentum
Acrobatics: Swinging on a rope to gain momentum
Blades: Sword: Use height to your advantage
Blades: Sword: Throat slice, mid air
Blades: Sword: Timing your strike not to hit who you're protecting
Unarmed combat: Flying roundhouse kick
Unarmed combat: Sucker punch for surprise

Non-skill Knowledge:
None

Loot & Consequences

Items: None

Injuries/Overstepping: None
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