The War of Slags Deep: Exposition 4

Actions have consequences, and all that.....

30th of Ashan 721

The shallow bay Egilrun is situated upon is used, these trials, for crafts and crafting. From boatmakers to weaponsmiths, glassblowers to metalworkers, the sound of hammers and saws can be heard almost every break of the trial, with crews working in shifts to produce the beautiful craftsmanship which they might, one trial, become famous for.

Moderators: Pegasus Pug!!!, Avalon

User avatar
Pegasus Pug!!!
City Moderator
City Moderator
Posts: 10448
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2016 1:08 am
Race: Prophet
Renown: 666
Plot Notes
Office
Templates
Point Bank Thread
Wealth Tier: Tier 1

The War of Slags Deep: Exposition 4

Image
30th Ashan, 721

The Meeting Place
"Things have come to a head," he said, looking at the others. "The boy has made a Wish."

"Someone needs to talk to him about that." She looked - and sounded - irritated.

"Agreed," he said with a grin. "It takes all the fun out of things."

"Will it calm Chrien?" The worry she felt was evident. But he simply shrugged.

"Would it calm you? Would it calm your sister or my brother if they were desecrating graves?" She glared at him but didn't answer. "The child loved her mother. You, of all people, should understand that."

"My sister's fury notwithstanding, the Wish provides an opportunity" he had been silent till now, but now turned his eyes to the others. They nodded.

"It does. But will they know what to do?"

"They will work it out! It will be a great adventure"

"We will need to direct them. To give them the last pieces of information."

"My son. We can inform him." They turned to look and he shrugged. "It seems appropriate, does it not?"

The Vault (Hart & Bao)

Bao Wished for Peace and Happiness for Scalvoris.

More tears fell down Hart's face; praying silently to Ziell, he Wished.


And the ground grew cold beneath them. Hart felt the Wish, felt it work. And then - he felt the pain. The screaming agony of Fracturing. It was more intense than he had ever felt it. The ice cracked around them, moving out in a freezing frenzy, it seemed - moving and expanding and soon the whole room was covered in it - the floor, the ceiling, the walls, every item.

"Come," Ziell said, softly. He held out his hands, one to Bao, and one to Hart. "We don't have much time."

And then, they were somewhere else.....

Scalvoris Town: Outside Where Element Hall Used To Be (Elisabeth, Kura, Woe)
The storm had stopped - or the barrier outside there did it's job more effectively.

They were discussing, quietly, the situation. Then, suddenly, Ru lifted her head and pointed.

"My hat!"

Even though she had never seen him, she seemed to recognise Hart somehow. Wriggling, she struggled to get down so that she could run to him.

And, the three of them would realise that they were, in fact, somewhere else.

Egilrun: (Oram)
Oram shook his head emphatically, opened his mouth to voice a protest. But what could he say? He closed his mouth again.

The whistle still in his hand and - perhaps - before he even managed to get a frown on his face, Oram turned his head or blinked .... and was elsewhere.

Doran, Yeva, Praetorum, Darius, Arlo Nir'wei
The cold spread.

Ice covered Scalvoris. In a matter of moments, ice covered the place. It was everywhere - every place. From Faldrass to Ishallr, from Sweetwine to Scaltoth, a sudden freeze came in the wake of the storm.

And the storm stopped.

As for them - they felt a tug. A pull. A moment of adventure or the touch of a mother. If they went with it - if they agreed to it. They, too, found themselves somewhere else. Somewhere new. Yet, for many, somewhere familiar.
Image
The Glass Temple. Scalvoris Town.
Was where they found themselves. In the blink of an eye, they were there. All of them who choseYou are under no obligation to post here. If you choose not to be involved at this point, then that's fine - please just don't post here. to be. Who had helped in the war - one way or another. Who had acted.

In front of them was a tiny tunawa. Stan. The High Priest of this Temple.

"Welcome," Stan said. His voice carried.

"It seems that due to," he paused and glanced at Hart. "Very specific circumstances, we have a period of time. Eight trials, one for each Original. Eight trials in which to stop the City Beneath from pouring into Scalvoris, from ripping us apart as the fracture itself tears. To return Scalvoris to strange, but not dangerous. We hope." Stan smiled and gestured with his tiny twig arms.

"Eight places of power, plus one heart. Four induks, four areas of balance." He smiled. "Each Induk exists in balance. Each one has been restrained. We must restore balance to Scalvoris." He looked at them. "The Fire of Faldrass, the Ice of Ishallr, The Soul of Scaltoth and the Song of Sweetwine" Stan looked at them. "When those Induks are free, then Scalvoris is balanced again and the Heart of Scalvoris, the ScalvFlame itself will forge once more. Except there are ~ or there were ~ four places which protected Scalvoris from their power overwhelming it."

Stan sighed, and looked at them all. "When Smooglenuff Manor was destroyed, the balance on Faldrass was lost. That is why the Badlands are there. Saoire contained it, but it would happen again. If we are to stop our whole island from that fate, we must balance before the Induks are released. Thankfully, The Tower and Watch are balanced well enough. Nothing too much has happened there. But Immortals Tongue? That balance," he looked then at Yeva and he smiled. "That was necessary."

He gestured, then, to Doran. "I believe that Professor Doran has more information to share. Others of you, too. Share your information - but please, if you are willing to go and release the Induks - or try - then say so. If you have a preference for which one, then say so. But we will need to send three groups. Ishallr. Scaltoth. Sweetwine. Then, we will all travel together to the Mountains and free the ScalvFlame."

 ! Message from: Peg

This here is why nothing past the 30th for the war. Pre-30th objectives are now locked. No new threads for that.

Please note
1. Yeva & Prae are threading on Immortals Tongue. That balance is pivotal (literally) here. That will need to be completed before the final mountains thread occurs (rough timeline below). You are both welcome to join one of the three Induk-freeing plots, too.
2. Due to Hart's wish - for 8 trials Scalvoris will be in a state of peace (no violence) - but it will also be in a state of everwinter. I will put up announcements and stuff.

What happens now:
You have 1 week to post here. Without exception, I need posts done by Sunday 25th April. If you're not "on the list" above, please PM me before doing so.
On the 25th April I will do a starter post for each area, with objectives etc.
Areas are:
Ishallr
Scaltoth
Sweetwine
Glass Temple. ( This will be a "command central" - anyone can join this but Stan will suggest that Doran and Kura are it.)

For obvious reasons, you may only join one.

Anyone else who wishes to join this thread, please drop me a PM. If you feel I've missed you - please drop me a PM.
There are no required skill levels for this.
It is - undoubtedly - dangerous. It's a war.
What will get you hurt is NOT if you are low skilled. What will get you hurt is doing something foolish. There's plenty for everyone to do.
Equally, being highly skilled is not a guarantee of anything. This will need teamwork and smarts.
word count: 1209
Image
~~Red in hoof and claw... ~~


Family visiting. Send help!
User avatar
Hart
Approved Character
Posts: 642
Joined: Fri Dec 02, 2016 11:12 pm
Race: Mortal Born
Renown: 527
Character Sheet
Character Wiki
Plot Notes
Personal Journal
Templates
Letters
Point Bank Thread
Wealth Tier: Tier 2

Contribution

Milestones

RP Medals

Miscellaneous

Events

Re: The War of Slags Deep: Exposition 4

30th Ashan, 721

Hart Wished.

The temperature in the vault dropped. The vault was all in ice, and the ice shattered outward,

and the Wish shattered Hart, not outward, but in. The pain was bad. For a moment he thought he was dying. He wasn't able to breathe for the pain and Hart grasped at his chest and throat, gasping.

But the moment passed, and he wasn't dying. Hart would have screamed but his chest hurt too badly, and the tears that had been falling from his face landed, shattering, on the icy ground.

Dragging in an agonized breath, Hart knew that he had Fractured. The pain of it was agony. "Come," a man said in a quiet voice, and Hart dragged his gaze up from the icy ground. He knew the man was Ziell, and Ziell said, "We don't have much time." He held out a hand to Bao and to Hart, and Hart grasped Ziell's hand. His other hand remained at his chest.

He didn't know if he'd be able to get the breath to speak. So he prayed. Ziell, thank you.

And then he was out of the vault, and Hart was in a temple. The temple was all in ice, like the vault had been all in ice, and Hart knew that it was because of the Wish and because of Ziell.

Hart had a moment to get his breath, and then a small voice said, "My Hat!" Hart turned and saw Ruari attempting to get out of a young woman's arms. The two year old shivered and shivered, and Hart was by his daughter's side in a moment.

"Ru," he breathed. Thank you, Bao. Thank you, Ziell. Bao had said Ruari was out of the vault, but knowing it and witnessing it was different. Ruari looked like she'd been rained on, and the temple was cold.

"H-h-hat," she said, and Hart removed his sweater. Assuming the young woman let him, he'd pull the sweater over Ruari, helping her get her arms through, folding the sleeves so they weren't too long. He didn't know how Ru, and the young woman and a number of the others, had gotten wet. He glanced at the icy windows, but it wasn't raining.

"My name's Hart," he said quietly to the young woman. "This is my daughter. Could I...?" If the young woman let him, he'd hold Ruari in his arms. It hurt to hold her, his chest was agony, but he held the two year old tightly, bundled up in his sweater. She rested her head on his shoulder, her light blue eyes falling shut.

It was only when she was in his arms that Hart thought, Ruari was looking at me. She'd looked at him; she'd known who he was. He dragged a hand at his eyes, and his hands were trembling.

"Thank you," he said breathlessly to the young woman, and there were so many people to thank.

But Ziell had said, We don't have much time. Hart would need to thank them when there was time. He glanced at the others, surprised to see Yeva who'd been resurrected at the Mummer's Ball, as well as Woe and Arlo.

"Welcome," a tunawa said to them all. He spoke and glanced to Hart, and though Hart didn't feel the cold, he shivered.

Hart listened to the tunawa, Ruari resting in his arms. But though the tunawa spoke in simple terms, Hart didn't know what he was speaking about. The war, Hart thought, but he didn't understand much of what was said. But he listened, and he attempted to make sense of it.

The Wish had granted them eight days, and they had those days to travel to four places in Scalvoris, to Ishallr, Scaltoth, and Sweetwine, to release the induks there. And then they had to travel to the Scalvoris Mountains, to the Heart of Scalvoris.

Hart didn't know what an induk was, or what the Heart of Scalvoris was.

Releasing the induks, the tunawa said, would prevent the balance of Scalvoris becoming dangerous; would prevent Scalvoris becoming like the Badlands in Faldrass.

Hart didn't know what the Badlands were. He'd been locked in a vault since the 17th. He didn't know why he was here; other than because he had Wished. He shut his eyes momentarily, trembling, and attempted to make sense of it all.

But he wasn't able to; all he knew was that he'd been in the vault, and now he was here. And Ruari had been in the vault, and now she was here.

The tunawa wanted information, and Hart was silent a moment. Then he breathed, and said quietly, "I have information. But I need to speak to the people who need the information. Would you be able to point me to... to whomever is the lead, here?" Assuming the tunawa was able to point him to them, Hart would look over to where they were.

"My name is Hart," Hart said to them. "And I have information that... might be needed."

"Please," he said quietly. "Please do not speak of this to others without absolute need. Please do not..." He breathed. "Do not do to me, or to the people important to me, what the Warden of Slags Deep did."

"Please," Hart said once more.

Then he spoke.

"On the 16th Ashan, my daughter Ruari was kidnapped by the Warden of Slags Deep." Hart held Ruari quietly a moment; but there was not much time. "No," he said a moment later, tiredly. "Sorry. I'm tired and in pain. I misspoke." He had only just gotten out of the vault; it was difficult to order his mind.

"On the 16th Ashan, my daughter was kidnapped from her home in the Sweetwine Woods," Hart said. "That night, I got a ransom note in my dreams. The ransom demanded I trade myself for Ruari. I did so on the 17th Ashan."

"I'm a dreamwalker," Hart said.

"The 17th Ashan, I went through dreams to... some dreamscape, or maybe to a location in the dreaming world. There was a woman in the dreaming world, who was not a woman; she was a woman, a child, an ancient. She said she was in a cage, and in the dream the cage was of glass. The woman and the glass cage were deep deep down in the dark. The dream ended abruptly, and when I woke I was in some other place."

"The Warden of Slags Deep was there, and he asked," Hart said, but then was silent.

But why was he here, if not to give information? Hart held Ru a bit more tightly. Please do not, he begged them silently. Please.

"He asked me if I would murder every living soul on Scalvoris, to save my daughter," Hart said. "He asked me if I would Wish, to save her. I didn't respond. But I'm, I'm able to do that," Hart breathed. This was the information he didn't want to give. "I'm able to Wish." He glanced at the tunawa who had looked at him before.

"I didn't speak to the Warden long," Hart said. "But, from what he said, I believe he would murder every living soul on Scalvoris, though I don't know... why. I believe him to be criminally insane." The Warden had not seemed sane to him; or rather, he'd seemed like a man getting ever nearer to the brink of insanity.

"And," Hart said, "I believe that the Warden might be watching us, now."

"Both the ransom note in my dreams and the Warden himself said something about it. That he's watching all of us, or is able to get information about us. He knew information about me that I don't, I don't know how he knew. He said that he knows all that we say, and all of our plans, and all of the immortals' plans." He looked at them tiredly. "And I believe him."

There had been the feeling, before, that Hart was being watched. That feeling was not there now, but Hart was not willing to believe the Warden wasn't getting all the information he was able to.

Like they were getting all the information they were able to.

"The Warden said that he wasn't the one who kidnapped Ruari," Hart said. "He said that his daughter had kidnapped her. Then he locked me up. I don't, I don't know where. Ruari was in that place, with me."

"He locked me up so I wouldn't Wish to save Scalvoris," Hart said. "And in that place, I wasn't able to. For however many days,
eleven days
, I wasn't able to. There was no magic there. And then Ziell saved me and my daughter. And I was able to Wish." Hart didn't give any information about Bao. Ziell, protect Bao from the Warden's wrath.

"I Wished for Peace and Happiness for Scalvoris."

"That man there," Hart said quietly, and indicated the tunawa, "Said we have eight days." He was silent for a moment, his eyes shut. Then he looked at them. "We have eight days of peace for Scalvoris. During those eight days, there will be no violence in Scalvoris. But it will be winter here."

"I believe I'm here to give you information. And to do what I'm able, to save Scalvoris. I don't about any of what that man said," he said, indicating the tunawa again. "I've been locked away and I have no information other than what I've experienced. But if it means saving Scalvoris, I'll help release the, the induks. And I'll help restore the balance," Hart said tiredly.

Eight days. It was not all that long. He would be able to do this for eight days. But he was so tired.

"But I need to get my daughter to Faldrass. So, I believe it makes the most sense for me to travel that direction, toward Ishallr."
Notes: I left it vague who Hart was speaking to because I don't know who the people in command central would be. But I think it's okay to assume, maybe, that it's Kura, and whomever else.

Edit 4/23/21: Those who want to listen to Hart are able to. Hart is speaking to / addressing whomever the lead is. But he's also speaking generally to the room / giving information to the room.
Last edited by Hart on Fri Apr 23, 2021 5:52 pm, edited 1 time in total. word count: 1785
User avatar
Woe
Approved Character
Posts: 2372
Joined: Sun Feb 05, 2017 6:46 am
Race: Mortal Born
Profession: Éminence grise
Renown: 1455
Character Sheet
Character Wiki
Plot Notes
Templates
Letters
Wealth Tier: Tier 4

Featured

Contribution

Milestones

RP Medals

Miscellaneous

Events

Re: The War of Slags Deep: Exposition 4

Image


Woe was transported after the ordeal in the Element Hall, along with Kura, Elisabeth, and Ruari. They were all brought to the Glass Temple, where everything had begun, and also come to a head. They were among the others who'd received visitation by Immortals, as well. There was also the Ithecal Praetorum. Woe had no idea what role he had to play, but there was no time to question it. Stranger things have happened, after all. Right now, Woe's focus was on Hart, who explained what had happened, from the moment he'd excused himself from Woe's home to the disappearance of Ru, and his own. He'd been a prisoner in Slag's Deep, along with Bao. He'd wished for Peace and Happiness in Scalvoris there, in that pit of despair. And presumably, that allowed enough of Ziell's domain to fill the chamber of Slag's Deep that he could break through, and abscond with Hart. That Hart could Wish was an interesting detail that had eluded Woe up until now. It now made sense why the Warden wanted to keep Hart out of their hands. But at the same time, it appeared that wishing had a deleterious effect on Hart's health. Such was the nature of Mortalborn powers, sometimes. Woe had misused and overused his Ignorance domain at times, and it'd aged him a few years. To use power as potent and reality shattering as a Wish, certainly, that would push one to fracture.

Woe waited for Hart to have his moment with his daughter, and to give his explanation before the mortalborn said what he had to say to Hart. As he listened and absorbed the information, Woe found he couldn't impeach Hart's reasons. Would Woe have done any different? Probably. He would've consigned anyone of significance to himself if it meant an easier victory for Scalvoris. He'd tried to do so in the Temple with a woman he barely knew, and truth be told, he would've done it to anyone else. Perhaps even including Hart, even with as much as he liked Hart. He would allow him to shatter himself in order to bring about what Woe needed to happen.

"I'm glad you're here, Hart." Woe said, and he meant it. "It wasn't what I would've done, and you played right into the Warden's hands, but that's done. You've already paid for your mistake so there's no need to dwell on it."

Woe looked to Stan, and then to the Kura and Doran, "I will go wherever you think I'm most useful. But I'd prefer to accompany Hart to Ishallr, to offer him my guidance and supervision." Woe turned to Hart, "That is, if you'll have me along."

Woe waited for them to make a decision. As stated, he would go where they willed him to. If they wanted him to stay at the Glass Temple, he would do that as well. "My only priority is Egilrun's preservation. I'll go to whatever end serves that purpose best."

 ! Message from: Woe
Woe is leaving his diri of Commerce Radburn Salvatore at command central (The Glass Temple), for the purposes of communication.
Last edited by Woe on Wed May 05, 2021 4:01 pm, edited 2 times in total. word count: 548
Image*Image*Image
User avatar
Bao Bao
Approved Character
Posts: 108
Joined: Sun Dec 20, 2020 7:50 pm
Race: Cadouri
Renown: 125
Character Sheet
Character Wiki
Templates
Wealth Tier: Tier 5

Featured

Contribution

Milestones

RP Medals

Miscellaneous

Events

Re: The War of Slags Deep: Exposition 4

Image
"Hart?" Bao asked with concern, placing a hand on the man as he saw the agonizing pain the man was. Something had changed, something was going on. A wish granted. Then the room went cold, everything turning to ice around them, and a familiar voice spoke. Keeping one arm on Hart, Bao took Ziell's hand into his own, not wanting to ask any questions or hesitate if things were urgent. Ziell had come far sooner than Bao had expected. Hart had been in the vault. Bao was, to put it bluntly, confused.

Until he arrived.

As he found himself in the glass temple, Bao saw two things. First, and foremost, he saw Ru. Or at least, what he could only assume was Ru, as the small child called out to the man. Without a moment of pause, Bao let go of his gentle hold on Hart and took a step aside, allowing the father what he had wanted - to see his daughter. That was what Bao had gone to the vault to do, after all. Protect Ru. Now they were out, all of them were out, and they were sat safely in a place Bao had spent many trials.

Then came Stan, a man Bao felt he knew better than anyone else he had met in Scalvoris. Mixed emotions flooded through every inch of the red panda, doing his best to hold back too much emotion. Seeing Hart take his daughter into his arms brought tears to his face, a happy smile spreading over him. As it did so he turned to the Tunawa once he had finished speaking. "Good to see you, Stan" he said quietly, not wanting to interrupt conversations others might be having.

Hart stepped up and spoke of what he knew of the war thus far, and why they had taken him. A lot of it made sense now, Bao understanding what had happened. A wish, his wish. Hart had said nothing but the instinct was there, the feeling deep inside that Bao's need had been granted. That was why. Hart was why. If Ziell was watching, or listening, Bao sent a silent thought to him. That he had been right, Hart was a peaceful and kind man, and that Bao was grateful to have met him not just once, but every time that had and would now follow. Hart had given him the Wish he wanted and had done so without hesitation, even though doing so had visibly hurt him.

Slowly, once Hart had said everything he wished to and Woe had offered his help, Bao would step forward and wrap his arms around Hart. "Thank you" he whispered, knowing the man would understand, before breaking the hug and turning himself to anyone in the room. "I suppose I should share my piece, now," the Cadouri said with a quiet and gentle voice, bringing up a paw to wipe any emotion from his eyes. Now was the time to act, emotion could come in a small while.

"My name is Bao, and I was here not too long ago. With Ziell, Chamadarst, and with some friends of mine" he smiled softly at Elisabeth and Woe, should he see them both. "I made a deal with them, to take the place of Ru in the vault. I did so, and expected to stay there alone a while, but found Hart. Then Hart...well, saved us. A lot of us" he nodded to his friend.

"But before we went in, I saw you. A lot of you. Ziell showed me what you had seen in prior trials. Talking to Immortals, learning what had happened, all as a big flash of information. So forgive me if I tell some of you things you already know, but it was you that taught me, so thank you" he nodded to all of the people he had seen visions of. So many. One in particular, however, stood out. Oram. It had been a long time since the two had talked, Bao almost wondered if the hunter would be surprised to see him here. Should they make eye contact, Bao would nod his way, hoping to catch up with him once this was all over.

Then Bao got to business.

"More than anything, I want to talk about the Warden. His daughter. To explain what happened, why it happened. I might miss things, and if I do, I know that Professor Doran will be able to inform all of you" the Cadouri admitted, having seen Doran in his visions and knowing that most of this information came from the vision he had seen of the professor specifically. Bao audibly sighed, glancing down for a moment. "The Warden is not an evil man, or not in the way we thought he was. He is a man in pain, and one we should try and understand and help."

Knowing there may be some in the room that didn't understand, or perhaps didn't even like what Bao said, he continued. "He was tricked. To swear an Oath, to protect her forever, so that she wouldn't die in front of him. Because he is the son of an Immortal, and because he didn't want to lose her" he explained. "But she isn't really his daughter anymore. She was replaced by something else, something powerful, that now lives on in her place and will do so for a long, long time. Because of his vow, however, he must protect her. No matter what she has become, or what evil has taken her place. That was the trick."

Bao glanced to Hart and Ru for a moment and frowned. "With that information, I ask favors from all of you" he said, deciding that now was a better time than any. "Do not hate the Warden, or let anger overtake you as it has him. Hope for him, and his daughter - and his mother. To Qylios, who lost a son just as much as the Warden lost a daughter" the Cadouri spoke with a tone of sadness and loss. Truthfully, Bao mourned for them, as he would mourn should any other person lose a child of theirs. It was cruel, the world was cruel.

"I also ask that, if you are here, you help us. Hart has given us time, but we have to use it. For the sake of everyone here, and everyone on this Island" he asked, knowing it was a lot to ask of people that had potentially been through so much already. Yet it was important that he did so, now more than ever. Every single person that agreed had a purpose, all of them able to bring something forward as a team. That was what they needed now above anything else, just as he had told Elisabeth and Woe. People to coordinate, people to work side by side and do what they could as a team. Alone they were a flake.

Now they had a flurry.

Then, quietly, the Cadouri made his way to the side of the room and to Hart, where he placed a hand on the man's shoulder. "Are you hurt, my friend?" he asked quietly, turning to Ru and smiling gently should she be there also.
word count: 1214
User avatar
Doran
Peer Reviewer
Peer Reviewer
Posts: 3564
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2016 3:43 am
Race: Mortal Born
Profession: Alchemist
Renown: 1162
Character Sheet
Character Wiki
Plot Notes
Templates
Letters
Point Bank Thread
Wealth Tier: Tier 10

Re: The War of Slags Deep: Exposition 4

Image
Without a warning, winter returned to Scalvoris. Within the blink of an eye, ice covered the land where the first tentative signs of spring had finally become visible after an eternity of frost and darkness. The Mortalborn who had been sitting at his desk, writing, looked up from his notebook quite abruptly and furrowed his brow fractionally as he wondered what the meaning of the sudden chill was. A moment later, he grabbed his cloak that he had draped across the back of his chair and wrapped it around his body.

He did not mind the cold as much as most people did – a part of him did in fact need to be surrounded by ice and snow in order to thrive – but the sudden change in temperature was unexpected, as was the fact that the storm that had been raging for a while now had stopped and made way to peace and quiet, as if it had never happened in the first place.

Was the return of winter another piece of the puzzle that he was trying to put together, or unrelated to what was happening on the island? Was it perhaps a sign from his Immortal father? An unspoken question on his lips, he surveyed the landscape that had changed so dramatically. His train of thought was interrupted suddenly when he felt it though.

There was some sort of tug, some sort of awareness that had not been there a moment earlier. Something – or someone - was pulling at him and almost telling him to come along. That strange sensation almost reminded him of the touch of a mother, his mother whose face he had as good as forgotten over the course of the centuries, but whose memory would live on forever. He hesitated for a moment as the situation was somewhat unusual and he had never been somebody who followed without question before he hurriedly packed his domain bag and retrieved the notebooks with his research notes.

Having done that, he put on the jacket that he had imbued with an alchemical effect once.

And then, before he could react, or think about what was happening any further, he was suddenly somewhere else. For just a moment, the son of Ziell stood there, blinking, but he did not allow himself to be confused, or disconcerted, for any length of time. He considered such to be counterproductive. Instead, he turned to survey his new surroundings, recognizing them as the Glass Temple that he had visited on occasion in order to pray.

When his gaze fell on the tiny tunawa priest, he bowed his head in a gesture of deep respect, as was appropriate in his opinion. He did not raise his voice though, but took a step back, crossed his arms over his chest and watched and listened instead, a thoughtful expression on his face. His gaze only flittered towards the other people in the temple on occasion – apparently, he realized, he had not been the only one who had been transported in such a way.

For just a moment, his thoughts went back to an event, arcs ago, a temple in Ne’haer and people from all over Idalos that had been summoned, but a moment later, he focused on the present again now. This was not the same situation, and he was not the same man anymore, the man who had been a lot like the Warden once, desperate and without hope. He believed in the possibility of a better, brighter future now, and in peace.

Much of what Stan told them was not exactly news to him. He had already heard of the Originals, of Fei’s grave, and the city beneath, the city that Chrien had destroyed in her fury over her mother’s death. He knew of the Induks, and he already had a good idea as to why Smooglenuff Manor and Enri Smooglenuff and his descendants had mattered, but he had still been trying to figure out a way to prevent the worst. It seemed as if there was a plan now. That balance apparently existed in at least some places was reassuring.

When Stan gestured to him and mentioned that he had more information to share, he inclined his head and removed his research notes from the bookbag he had brought along with his domain bag. It was just then that a little girl (He wasn’t sure why they had brought children into the temple.) exclaimed something about her hat and ran up to a man he didn’t think he had ever seen before. For a moment, he smiled as it was obvious that this was some sort of happy reunion – and Scalvoris needed happy moments, now. A moment later, when the man took his sweater off, he noticed the glow though, the glow that hadn’t been visible before, when he had been wearing more than just a shirt.

He couldn’t help but remember that fateful meeting back in Ymiden, when Llyr had told him that he was Chamadarst’s son, that he had been worried that they wouldn’t be able to be lovers anymore because of it, the way that his mentor’s fingers had glowed with an etheric light. Llyr had thought that the glow came from his powers. Was this man, this Hart, like Llyr and him, the son of an Immortal, and if he was, did it matter right now?

He thought about it for a while before he listened to Hart’s story, furrowing his brow slightly in the process. The woman in the glass cage made him wonder – was she the Warden’s daughter? – but more than that, the revelation of Hart’s power piqued his curiosity. He had not thought that Mortalborn could have such powers – the combination of the glow and the mention of being able to Wish led him to that conclusion – but he did not doubt it – and he did not doubt that Hart’s ability could have far-reaching effects.

He did not wonder what he would have done in Hart’s place though – and if he would ever have resorted to such measures as the Warden before, before he had realized that there was hope – but focused on the present and quietly took in the information in order to hopefully memorize it.

Some time later, after Hart and Woe who he had seen before (They had met in the Infirmary in Viden, shortly after Woe’s suicide attempt and had played chess.) had finished speaking, he stepped forward in order to finally share the information that he possessed. He inclined his head slightly before he spoke in a firm and calm tone of voice, “Professor Doran Thetys, from Viden. I have been conducting research since I heard that the Council had declared war on Slag’s Deep, and I believe I can shed some light on the events that are taking place in Scalvoris now. As those that I exchanged messages with already know, Scalvoris is located on top of Fei’s grave.”

“She was one of the Originals, the mother of Xiur, Qylios and Chrien, among others. She founded a city here, on the island, a city that she loved and protected – the city that Stan”,
he spoke and paused briefly in order to nod at the tiny priest. “talked about. When she fractured, Chrien destroyed that city in her fury over her mother’s death and drove it into the water. I believe that this is why Chrien is angry, because her mother died, because that city might be uncovered – and because of the possibility of a war being waged on her mother’s final resting place, because of Fei’s grave being desecrated”, he explained, furrowing his brow barely noticeably for this remained one of the things that bothered him the most about what was going on.

In his opinion, a grave should be a place of peace and quiet remembrance rather than the site of a current or future war, and people should let the dead rest in peace. He was not even sure if the so-called Grand Fractures of which ever Original had left one behind should really be explored. A grave was a grave, no matter how powerful the one that rested in it had been and how long they had been gone, and walking around in one constituted a sacrilege, although it might of course be necessary to take certain protective measures.

“As the brave Bao here already told you”, he continued and nodded at the Cadouri – he really thought that he had been brave for taking the place of Ru in the Vault – more powerful people would likely have refused to do the same. “The Warden is a Mortalborn of Qylios, a Mortalborn of Qylios who swore an Oath to protect his daughter and make her life as long as his. In the process, anything good about her, anything mortal was stripped away though. She was never judged, and her soul never went to Vri. It was simply consumed, but he loves her still. He was tricked, tricked by the Immortal Audrae. There are those that want to see him punished, that even want his death, but is a man that is still capable of love truly beyond redemption?” he asked and let his gaze drift over the people that were gathered around him.

He left that question unanswered. Instead, he continued,

“Even some of the Immortals, including Xiur who I spoke to seek a peaceful resolution, for Scalvoris, for Qylios’, his mother, for Vhalar that he swore an Oath to and who are at risk because of it. Bao spoke of hope. I have seen it before, with my own eyes, an Immortal mother, reunited with her Mortalborn child, and a man whom many called a traitor that turned his life around. I do not know what took that girl’s place, although a colleague that I talked to thinks that something could be trapped below Scalvoris. Maybe something from the time of the Originals – or before – has survived”, he remarked – the traitor that he had spoken of had been himself, of course, the so-called Hero of Oscillus. He did not like sharing a theory that had not been confirmed (or refuted) so far, but it was better to turn out to be wrong than not to mention something that might possibly be important.

“It – whatever creature has taken the girl’s place – draws power from Fei’s fracture. Whatever happened when Fei died, acted like a stopper on a bottle. If the creature is released, that cork might pop. The balance that Stan spoke about would be upended. If the Induks were released …” he continued. “The creature gains power from the mages in Slag’s Deep as well, but that would not be enough to sustain it”, he explained, furrowing his brow almost imperceptibly once more – he had not figured out how exactly the creature drew power from the mages yet.

“I have brought my research notes on Fei, the Warden and his daughter – and other aspects such as Watch, the Pirate Lords, Ishallr and the Smooglenuffs with me. I have learned that this island is connected by a series of underground tunnels and that the ice caves of Ishallr are being controlled, for example – the former of which is something that both sides could use to their advantage. Anyone of you who wishes to learn more – or does not know what is going on at all yet – is welcome to read them”, he told them.

“I mentioned Fei and her fracture under Scalvoris that possesses magic, magic that changes you, before and that she plays a central part in this here. She is not just something to be researched and, possibly, feared though. She was a mother, and her children that loved her and her grandchildren still walk this world. Keep that in mind, no matter where you go, and no matter what you do. Think about what you would do if someone desecrated the grave of someone you love, pray to her, and honor her”, he spoke, in a tone of voice that was just as calm as before.

He was neither emotional nor irritated, at least not visibly. He just thought that that was how it should be. Even a lot of those in power treated Fei and her grave like a thing. They spoke of the fracture, but not of the woman who had died there – for Fei had been a woman in his opinion, albeit incredibly powerful and foreign - and of Chrien’s mother, at least not first and foremost. He was not sure if some of Fei’s children would approve – they might be irritated at hearing such words from the mouth of someone who was only half of their blood – but ignoring the woman behind the Original might be worse in his opinion.

“I think I will be able to help the most if I stay here, with the Albarech, continue to research and share the results of my research with you all, among other things”, he added before he stepped back in order to listen to the next person share their information, sending silent prayers to Daia and Xiur – and his mother Fei – as he did so. He had asked his patron if he would allow him to pray to Fei when he had arrived in Scalvoris, and which place would be more appropriate than a temple, a temple that was filled with those that were – hopefully – trying to protect Scalvoris and prevent the impending catastrophe?
Doran’s Research Notes
Feel free to assume that Doran shared what he learned in the following threads with you:

A Light in the Darkness
Light Returns to the Darkness: This thread is finished, but it hasn't been reviewed yet.
The Rising Stars
Fact Finding Fei: This thread is still in progress, so I could only share what happened until the last mod post with you.
An Unexpected Visitor: This thread is still in progress.
word count: 2346

Mutations

N/A

Blessings

N/A

Worn Items

Ring of Reversal
Ring of Immunity
User avatar
Elisabeth Black
Approved Character
Posts: 1726
Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2020 3:51 am
Race: Human
Profession: Little Wonder-Bunny of Anger
Renown: 1035
Character Sheet
Character Wiki
Templates
Letters
Point Bank Thread
Storybook
Wealth Tier: Tier 8

Re: The War of Slags Deep: Exposition 4


Image


Arc 721, 30 Ashan

Elisabeth…was a mess.

The first indication she had that something new was going on, was Ru stirring and talking about her ‘hat’ again. Stroking the girl’s hair, the young mage tried to calm her. The toddler, however, was persistent, trying to wiggle out of her arms. Holding on to her, she felt vastly under-qualified to be the guardian of the little girl in the moment, but she was doing her best.

And then everything changed. Again.

When she opened her eyes, fear begin flooding back in. The Temple. How had she…? As her cerulean eyes looked about, she noticed people she knew, and others she didn’t. Moeske had healed the injuries sustained in the storm and explosions but her appearance was still disheveled, cuts and tears in her clothing. Blood stains littered her garments, hair dripping with water…but through it all, she was alive, and they were safe. She offered up a small prayer to Moeske, thanking her for that which she had done for them.

It was a bit odd when Elisabeth thought about it. Each Immortal had domains they embodied and having met five Immortals in the span of two trials -she was counting Chrien- she was beginning to appreciate and understand them as a whole. Maybe that was part of the journey U’frek had set before her? Maybe her fate was to remain unmarked so she could appreciate what each Immortal brought to Idalos – their unique viewpoints and insights through their domains.

It was an interesting thought.

Holding on to the struggling child, she didn’t have much of a chance to note anything else before she was approached by a man. His eyes were for the child and nothing else – that was easy to see. Her first instinct was to protect Ru, just like she had been doing all along, stepping back. After the series of events the young woman had just been through, it wasn’t unreasonable.

It was then that things began to hit her. They had been standing in the same temple when Woe told them of one named ‘Hart’, that he had traded himself for his child. This was obviously that man, and the only thing he wanted was his daughter. Smiling, she gently adjusted Ru in her arms and allowed her to go to her father.

There wasn’t much time.

“Hart, I’m Elisabeth. Your daughter has been with me since the exchange with Bao was made. As you can see, her clothing is a bit damaged. There were several explosions and then the storm Chrien created. By the grace and kindness of Moeske, our injuries were healed. She is well and in the appropriate arms now.”

Glancing at Ru fondly, Elisabeth gently leaned in, kissing the girl on her forehead. “You were a very good and brave little girl. I hope sometrial to see the brave young woman you will grow up to be.”

Returning her attention to Hart, she noted how tired he looked. Of course. She couldn’t even imagine what he had been through, and as such, she did the only thing that came to mind. Wrapping her arms around his neck, the raven-haired mage gave him a quick hug and whispered softly to him. “You are a good father…and you aren't alone anymore.” It may have seemed odd, but it was the only thing she could think of to say for it was the only thing she knew. He had sacrificed himself in trade for his daughter. He was a good father...and now he had help.

Turning, she stepped away, able to once again take in the scene, but before she could, she felt a familiar feel - alone, angry and just a bit sad. Protecting Ru had been providing her focus and without the child, Elisabeth felt adrift again. It was like how she felt in the temple the first time, Immortals and others surrounding her, unsure of her place or duty, angry and missing home. The issue was, she didn’t have time to feel that way…and as such, she pushed it down, willing herself to lock it away and focus. A glance at Woe, now standing next to Hart, made the job that much harder but it had to be done. No, Elisabeth. There's no room for that right now.

There were so many she knew, but time was short, and things needed to be done. Steeling herself again, she listened to Stan speak of the final puzzle pieces and what they needed to do. The Induks. They were going to free the Induks. Faldrass was already free so that left three more. The Ice of Ishallr, The Soul of Scaltoth and the Song of Sweetwine. They each were to go to one of those places. In her mind, the choice was made the moment the words left his mouth.

As she walked through the room, her heart lifted the moment she saw one person in particular – Praetorum. She had already told Kura how useful he could be so to see him there made her smile…but it was more than that. Seeing him lifted some of the weight from Elisabeth that had fallen upon her in the past two trials.

Making her way through the room, she simply walked up to him and did as she always did – embraced him. He was a friend and mentor and having him there with her meant a great deal. He would want to know what was going on with her - she really did look dreadful - but in that moment, she just didn’t have the energy to explain everything. She just wanted to be with someone she trusted.

When she saw Bao, she gently kneeled to hug him. Elisabeth was truly glad the Cadouri was back.

Bao and Doran spoke, and oddly enough, Doran and she seemed to have been on similar research paths. The information she had was out there – there was no need to replicate it. She did however have something to say, waiting until Doran was done.

Okay U'frek, Ziell and Moeske....here I go...

“For those of you that don’t know me, my name is Elisabeth and I live on Faldrass. I was one of the original three shown the visits from the Immortals that you all received. The Albarech now has seen them as well. There are several Immortals involved in this situation and they are approaching this in accordance with their domains. I believe, “stopping for a moment to collect her thoughts.” that they are all due respect in this matter, as do the Induks we will be trying to release. Some things are not as they seem. Many Immortals appear to have been tricked, deceived, or otherwise manipulated. All viewpoints and approaches are valid. We need to talk and listen to each other while we have the chance if we are going to unravel the bigger picture and help all those involved. Most of us have been working alone on our various pieces of the puzzle, but we’ve been afforded the gift of time and others to aid us. We need to use it.”


Smiling tiredly up at Praetorum, she walked over to Kura, decision made. “I told you I would do whatever I could to help. I will go where you send me. You know my abilities and background....but I would prefer to go to Ishallr…with Praetorum and Balthazar Black. We need all the help we can get.”

There was little time for emotions, but she couldn’t deny that it was a part of her decision. Regardless though, Balthazar was an extraordinary fighter. They needed everyone. Ishallr? She was a true daughter of Viden. Found in the snow and ice outside the city, raised there and found peace in the crystalline beauty that fell from the sky. She thrived in that environment so what better place for her to go? Even though the fire of Defiance ran deeply through her and Faldrass was her home, it seemed to be safe. The island of fire had no need of her in that moment, but ice did. A creature of duality she was - fire and ice.

Balance.

Touching the silver band on her finger, she simply waited to see what would happen, closing her eyes and visualizing her happy place - with Balthazar in Haven.

word count: 1407
User avatar
Nir'wei
Approved Character
Posts: 988
Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2016 6:38 am
Race: Mortal Born
Profession: Councillor of Natural Affairs
Renown: 897
Character Sheet
Character Wiki
Plot Notes
Personal Journal
Templates
Letters
Wealth Tier: Tier 5

Featured

Contribution

Milestones

RP Medals

Miscellaneous

Events

Re: The War of Slags Deep: Exposition 4

Image
Sometimes, he wondered what it would have been like to have that simple, ordinary life he'd dreamed of when he was a child. Travelling the world with nothing but the air in his lungs, working to survive. A pure life, he'd thought. Before all of this. The last thing he saw before being dragged through cosmic space was the shocked faces of his second-in-command, his receptionist, his accountant and political advisors, all staring out the window as the world as they knew it became engulfed in a thick sheet of ice. In the middle of spring.

Then, a Temple bloomed around him. An unfamiliar one, since the Immortals he cherished did not look kindly on those who sat around praying all day. At least the priest at its head seemed to have a pretty good understanding of what was currently happening and informed them with minimal delay; though one-by-one as the others that had answered the call began to speak their pieces, the grand tapestry of just what they were dealing with, and the scale of the danger they faced, began to unfold in his head. "Cassion was right," Nir'wei spoke once the others had finished. Hart had been kidnapped and used as a weapon. The Warden had been deceived to save his child. Chrien's anger would tear them all apart, if the City Beneath did not manifest and kill them all anyway. "We still don't know why Audrae manipulated the Warden into this Oath. What she stood to benefit from, reducing this city and its people to nothingness, bringing back the City Beneath and creating whatever..." Drew power from the Fractures?

Nir'wei lifted both hands, and Sage materialised in them. The Emean, no more than a lump of swirling ink-black mass, changed from dog to bird to squirrel to cat, frantic in its agitation mirrored by his own. What could you tell me. If only I could... If only he could understand. Comprehending Sage was like trying to understand the ocean, though. There was a depth and a complexity to him that he could almost drown in, when he tried.

"I can offer my help wherever you wish." Closing his eyes and focusing created them all at once; seven wolves, a Zephyrus, and a halo of three spirits that floated above his head, one a common animal and creature of the forest, one yellow-orange and flickering like flame, and one blue-green and flowing like a rolling droplet of water. Two of the wolves stood shy of the average man; two more dwarfed horses, and even the rest would have easily dwarfed a common dog. "The Omegas can be split equally between Scaltoth, Sweetvine and Ishallr, with a Beta coordinating Ishallr and Scaltoth. Myself and Grey will head to Sweetvine. Sovar will reinforce Scaltoth as my conduit. The spirits will be most valuable with me. Vabina supports Ishallr." It would provide equal rudimentary support to each of the three regions, and one of his key forces to reinforce his presence. "Or I can focus on a single area. Scaltoth or Sweetvine would be most advantageous to me. Anything with natural wildlife."

Though, there was more. Listening to the others as they tried to organise themselves, a pattern was already becoming apparent - a distinctly uncomfortable one. "The rest of us need to be evenly spread to make sure we can tackle each area. Not just the three regions in need of balance or command." His eyes flicked to Elisabeth in particular. "Each team needs to be comprised of individuals suited to the environment they visit." It was a soft way of suggesting she not freeze herself to death. "And individuals we all trust." Balthazar's current situation was not unknown to him. "Balancing the Induk of Sweetvine, Scaltoth and Ishallr will stir Faldrass. You'd be better in Command, if not with him. And he'd be better in Faldrass, should the need arise for his involvement."

Nir'weis attention turned to Hart shortly afterwards, and her daughter as well. "If you need to go to Faldrass too, go. You shouldn't be going to Ishallr in your current condition." His lips thinned. "Nor should your daughter, for that matter." He might have sounded overly harsh, shutting down Hart's attempt at noble duty, however this was not the first time they'd found themselves in one of these situations due to Hart. He now knew the full events that had resulted in the Crack in the World, after all - and he'd heard tales of Rharne and how the Stormlands had cracked in two. Whether his intentions were genuinely wholesome, or horribly misinterpreted, or malicious all along, he couldn't quite fathom; but at that moment, he didn't care. He just wanted to finish this war before anything else got out of hand. "Woe, if you'd like to escort them to Faldrass or stay behind is up to you."

The others, he only glanced at. Darius and Oram in particular. "At least one Warden should be visiting each of the three Induk. When I communicated with Faldrass, he recognised Cyshe; it opened the way for dialogue. The power is something they will recognise. It'll be vital to calming down the potentially hostile ones. Perhaps it will be essential to awakening them in the first place." Really, they needed to be considering the best aptitudes of all their 'volunteers' with the utmost care. "Since Wardens take priority, they should each be accompanied by at least one support. Priority is to get the Warden to the Induk."

Then, he sighed, softly. So many tangled webs, and yet the biggest and inarguably the most important of them all still hung over them. "There's still something bothering me about all of this. Audrae... I can't help but wonder if she's behind the Warden's powers to see us all. To know what we're doing. And I can't help but feel like she knows too." Another Immortal bent on killing thousands and destroying the peace and balance of the world for her own selfish gains. "If she appears... we need to understand what her motivations are. Taking action without knowing the full picture opens us all to the same fate as the Warden. Tricked and betrayed into something that none of us could have predicted."
word count: 1071
We return to where we started, and pass onwards into history.
User avatar
Oram Mednix
Approved Character
Posts: 948
Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2020 2:59 am
Race: Human
Profession: Ranger-in-Chief
Renown: 960
Character Sheet
Character Wiki
Letters
Point Bank Thread
Wealth Tier: Tier 10

Featured

Contribution

Milestones

RP Medals

Miscellaneous

Events

Re: The War of Slags Deep: Exposition 4

It's the Council of Elrond!
In Antarctica!

Oram realized that it was futile to argue with Elise and Herman about the whistle, and at any rate, there wasn’t time. The hunter didn’t know how long the animals would stay calm in the face of the still-raging storm, and the three of them would need to make good on the respite they had to get the situation in hand. He turned to look at Ornot, and discovered that he was not that there…

…“he” being himself, and “there” being the stables. Oram stood, still dripping wet, and still clutching the foundling whistle, in the middle of a huge, vaulted, chamber lined with windows of many-colored glass. There were no animals, no stables, no rangers. There was also no storm, nor dampness, apart from the dampness he brought with him.

There was cold. Oram’s breath steamed in crisp dry air utterly unlike the close, moist warmth of the stables and kennels. Where was he?! What had just happened? And why had he been whisked away just then, even as Elise was in the middle of reminding him of all the rumors surrounding the traveler’s late traffic with Immortals? As if the rangers needed more reason to think him odd and fey! Also, he realized too late that his sudden disappearance left no one in charge.

But the hunter didn’t have time to worry about that now. The rangers were not here, wherever here was. So, the first thing was to figure that out. Where was here? And who was in that here with him?

A voice spoke, seeming to address him, and Oram’s attention was drawn to a talking tree-looking thing -a tunawa, Oram recalled after a moment. And then his yet-reeling mind realized where he was: the Glass Temple in Scalvoris. Others were there, some of whom he recognized. Bao Bao he saw, as well as Nir’wei, and a man named Woe whom he had met recently in Egilrun. Others he did not know: a very young girl passed even as he watched from a woman even more bedraggled and storm-beaten than he to a man she called “Hat”, and who introduced himself as Hart.

There was no time to greet anyone, and hardly any more to sort out who all was who, before the tunawa launched into its announcements. The names were all familiar enough: the induks and places and hearts. Yet Oram could not tell their import as Stan spoke. Others spoke after Stan, and the hunter listened and tried to take in the information they had to share.

Oram listened, and began to scowl as only he could scowl. It was all fussy, even more so than he had dreamed. Was there any Immortal that *wasn’t* involved in this thing? If Stan told it true, they had eight trials to do what needed to be done. And what Oram needed to do was *not* a bunch of research into the Shattering and Originals and Immortals and buried cities he’d never heard of. Thus, he was glad indeed when Nir’wei outlined his plan: go find the induks and release them and/or balance them or something. The hunter wasn’t sure he understood what that meant any better than he understood the rest of the stuff, but it sounded like something to *do*, something that, who knows? He might be able to do himself.

He could go to the Sweetwine, perhaps, try to find the Induk there, communicate with it somehow. Nir’wei seemed to hint that the induks might respond well to those who had the right sort of diri. Oram looked over at Amoach, who simply looked back with those inscrutable red eyes. Cooking tripods didn’t exactly have easy-to-read expressions. And Amoach might not have any better idea of whether he was the right sort of diri for the job than Oram did. Sighing, Oram turned his attention back to the rag-tag group.

At length, it looked like it was the traveler’s turn to speak. Oram tried to think back through all the verbiage that the others had poured out to see if there were anything he might add that hadn’t already been gone over. Well, no one had gone over who he was or how he had gotten mixed up in all this, so perhaps he should start with that. After clearing his throat nervously, he started:

”I’m Oram Mednix, and I live here in Scalvoris, or just outside it, most of the time. Lately I’ve been in Egilrun, working with the rangers to set up their new headquarters there and to scout out what Slag’s Deep has been up to. Chief Ranger Elliott approached me for some reason to ask me to do that.”

That took a lot less time, and warmed up his speaking confidence a lot less than he had hoped. Grimacing slightly, he continued: ”It’s been a crazy Ashan so far: in that time I’ve been visited by one Immortal, Vhalar, and sent a bunch of books by Cassion. Between that, my patrols, and talking to people around Egilrun, I’ve found out some things, though most of it is the same stuff people have already mentioned about the Warden, the daughter and whatever has taken her over, the Warden’s Oath and how it got twisted, Audrae, some sort of great ancient power under the island.”

The hunter shuffled his feet and thought about how to say the next bit. If he said it right, it might even be useful. ”A couple things I don’t remember hearing mentioned just now. One is that there’s some sort of seals that were set in place to contain whatever’s under Slag’s Deep and keep it there. Most of them have been broken, apparently, but Vhalar thought that it might be possible to create new seals to keep it contained. He didn’t have any more information than that, and neither do I.” Oram shrugged an apology.

”Another thing involves glass somehow. I haven’t been able to get a clear picture, but Scalvoris sands and glass made from them keep coming up in my investigations.” He took a deep breath; this was the hardest bit to organize. ”Enri von Smooglenuff thought that the colored sands around Scalvoris represented some sort of manifestation of “powers beneath”. That could have to do with what the Professor said about Fei’s grave and fracture, or it might not. I know that Slag’s Deep mines sand that gets made into glass in Egilrun, and I know that lately they’ve been buying glass from Egilrun but using some weird workaround that involves shipping it to Viden and back, so that whoever is making the glass for them doesn’t know who the real buyer is. I’ve been guessing that there’s something special about the glass made from the sand here that the Warden needs. I don’t know what, but what Hart just said about dreaming of a girl in a glass cage makes me think that maybe that’s what the glass is for: containing the Warden’s daughter somehow, or whatever the power is that’s using her. But that’s all just guesswork.”

Oram took a deep breath and let out a sigh that was part relief and part resignation. ”No idea if that information helps anyone. I also have no idea if it would help for me to offer to go the Sweetwine to contact, release, balance, whatever the induk there. But that’s what I’d like to offer to do next.”

He looked around the room. ”I have another suggestion. It’s cold and some of us are wet from the recent storm. Maybe we should dry out our clothes and warm up. No sense in making all these grand plans if we drop dead from hypothermia right here.”
Last edited by Oram Mednix on Mon Apr 26, 2021 1:58 am, edited 1 time in total. word count: 1341
Villains are powerless against story beats.
User avatar
Praetorum
Approved Character
Posts: 1425
Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2019 11:08 am
Race: Ithecal
Profession: Mercenary
Renown: 1020
Character Sheet
Character Wiki
Plot Notes
Letters
Point Bank Thread
Storybook
Wealth Tier: Tier 5

Featured

Contribution

Milestones

RP Medals

Miscellaneous

Events

Re: The War of Slags Deep: Exposition 4


Praetorum was alone in his tent, silently sharpening his glaive, when winter returned, with a vengeance.

Alarmed, he rose to his feet, weapon disappearing into his scabbard. As he reached for the entrance to his tent, though, he felt something pulse inside of him.

No. He felt something pulling at him. Alarm rose inside of him as he recalled the last time something like this had happened—the Call of a shared dream, one that had changed him deeply, and reunited him with a brother, however briefly. But this one felt… different, somehow. Less insistent, more request than demand. A little like coming home.

Prae took only a heartbeat to make his decision. For this pull to come at the same time as this sudden frost could not be a coincidence. Turning, Prae grabbed his domain bag, and the bundle that held both his plate and leather armor.

Then, after a final look to ensure he was missing nothing, Prae closed his eyes, and answered the summons.

When he opened them, he was somewhere else, somewhere new. Prae had never been to Scalvoris Town before, but he knew a temple when he saw one. Well kept, no signs of violence or disrepair.

A quick glance revealed he was not the only one here, and from the looks of disorientation on some of their faces, not the only one who’d arrived by such means.

Woe, who he seemed to be meeting quite a bit these trials. Elisa, her clothing torn and dirty with a child in her arms. A man Prae vaguely recognized… Eihr? Or was it Hart? Yeva, who he’d acted as protector for not a tentrial ago. And others he didn’t know.

People spoke, and Prae listened silently, curling his tail around Elisa’s shoulders when she approached for a hug.

Induks. Immortals. Parents. Balance. Some of these things Prae had heard before; most of it he had not. Still, he understood the broad strokes.

Pain and grief and family. And the things it made people do. Prae knew what that was like. Fates, did he know.

When Doran offered, Prae took his research notes, and started to skim through them as people began volunteering for positions. As he read, something caught his eye. He knew little of Scalvoris, and was unfamiliar with any of the places mentioned save for Faldrass and Immortal’s Tongue, but a brief aside in Doran’s notes mentioned shifting caves and tunnels in Ishallr.

Praetorum had been Called once before, to a place so confusing and twisted it had changed his hone spark. It was a small change, the sort of thing that was more convenience than power, and yet…

Perhaps it was fate. Perhaps it was coincidence. Or perhaps it would be completely meaningless. But it was worth a shot.

“I’ll go to Ishallr.” Prae said firmly. “If I’m not misreading, Doran’s notes suggest that the caves and tunnels there might be the key to the Heart of Scalvoris. And even if not, they will likely be important. I have a sort of etheric sense for where I am at any given time, and I cannot get lost. And besides that, I am a defier capable of sensing movement in the elements around me. If we’re going to navigate an ever changing network of caverns, that’s where I should be.”
word count: 566
Let's play 'What's Weird About Prae'

Head

  • A fiery rune shines under his right eye
  • A firey glow in the back of his mouth

Arms

  • A ring of blue runes floats over each of Prae's wrists
  • A silver shield marks the back of his right hand
  • A ring of light around his left forearm

Misc

  • His tail is about eight feet long, usually knotted around his waist
  • His body temperature is uncomfortably high

Surroundings

  • Wind gusts with every step he takes
  • The area around him is slightly more static-y than normal
User avatar
Arlo Creede
Approved Character
Posts: 1386
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2017 9:15 pm
Race: Mortal Born
Profession: Cassion's Champion
Renown: 820
Character Sheet
Character Wiki
Templates
Point Bank Thread
Wealth Tier: Tier 5

Re: The War of Slags Deep: Exposition 4

Image
There was a difference between the sort of cold that rolled in with the changing seasons, built on itself, eased gradually, then rolled predictably out again as it always had, and presumably always would; and the sudden, out of nowhere, unnatural one that went painfully straight to the bone and stayed there. It had come on so abruptly that where he and Vega had been camped on Faldrass, a jagged crack formed in the suddenly frozen ground, and zigzagged its way right through the center where the fire had been built. There could only have been something supernatural at work, therefore Arlo wasn't particularly surprised at the sort of cosmic tug that began pulling away at him.

It wasn't exactly a call to adventure that he sensed, though just like his Immortal father, Arlo was hardly the type to turn down invitations like that. The timing wasn't exactly ideal. Vega's current condition had made him resolve to remain close by for the time being. But this was something different. The pull had a sense of urgency to it, and familiarity. Maybe it was Cassion, or something else. But no matter the exact reason, Arlo left instructions with Jonas, his mortal father...for Vega's sake, gathered his things quickly and gave in to the call.

Among the things he took with him was a wolf's tooth that hung on a leather strand around his neck. He had been handed the thing by Cassion during a previous journey to the ice caves in Ishallr, after he'd managed to fell the beast who'd owned it first. Resting against his bare chest beneath layers of warm clothing and leather armor, it was warm and thrummed in time with the beating of his own heart.

And then as quickly as he'd given way to the call, he found himself in unfamiliar surroundings. Surrounded by many others who presumably answered a similar call. Many of them, but not all, he couldn't recall meeting before. Then there was Stan, who Arlo might not have noticed given the difference in height, had the tunawa not bothered to speak up. He might have trod right over him otherwise. Arlo knew very little so far as the fine details, so far as the current war that was raging around them. He'd only recently returned to Scalvoris, and up to just recently, he'd spent nearly an arc chasing after his mortal father through Maste's Maze. He'd started to wonder if they'd ever emerge again unscathed.

But in spite of it, he was familiar with the badlands, with Smooglenuff and his mansion. The induks, the four areas of balance, the heart, and more. At least, though it wouldn't have been enough to cause him to turn heel and go...if he had he'd be no son of Cassion, he wouldn't be going in completely blind. Others clearly had information to share, and on reflection, Arlo believed that sharing what he could of his previous experiences at Ishallr, might be useful information.

"My name is Arlo Creede," he said so those who were interested could hear him. "I am more than willing to help free the induks, and will go wherever I'm most needed. However, I have much more experience, in this regard, with Ishallr. I have been there several times before, most notably in the company of my father, the Immortal Cassion. Our time in the ice caves made for a perilous adventure, to say the least. And unfortunately, was I to include every detail in the immediate here and now...Well," he added, "There is no short version to that story." Funny, some of Cassion's parting words that trial came back to Arlo, just then. He'd advised at the end that there was a darkness coming, but that Arlo might want to wait some time before sharing that news with others. He guessed that the time was now.

"There were wolves there. Wolves that had once walked Scalvoris, but not for a long time since. Four of them, one for each element. We battled them, Cassion and I. And then later, they reappeared in their elemental form. Each approached and marked me before it was done. Presumably, now that the curse against them is broken, they now walk Scalvoris again," he said. Or at least, it's what Cassion had told him might happen. "But they weren't the only souls trapped there, or the only cursed ones. There are ice statues there, in the ice caves. Eerily lifelike, seamless. There were sixteen then. Representatives of four families, each statue was a prison for a cursed soul," he told those gathered. "Souls who'd long ago, in fact, agreed to be cursed in that way. They believed they were doing it to protect the island and all who lived on and around it. A few lives for many."

The curse, Arlo told them, could only be broken by a mortal. "Only a mortal who was unaware of the consequences to him or herself, or even the means of doing it, could break the curse. In short, I did. I guess mortalborn was close enough to mortal to qualify," Arlo added with shrug. "The souls were freed, though when Cassion and I left there, the statues, emptied of the freed souls, still remained there. With the addition of two new ones. One of my younger self, and another, aged by several arcs."

In doing what he'd done without a care for the consequences, presumably, he may have offended the Immortal of Time. In the end, Time must have been more forgiving that he'd given the Immortal credit for. "The wolves we'd fought earlier had been part of that curse, but in the end, they reappeared. One of flame, one of earth and stone. one of swirling twists of air and the fourth one carved of living ice. Each came forward, laid a forehead on my outstretched hand...perhaps to thank me for breaking the curse or to mark me and create a connection. Or perhaps both. And then they were gone."

"The source of the curse was a relic of Ralaith. The story behind it's origins is a longer one. But in the case of the trapped souls, the person who had possession of the relic used it to trap the souls who'd bargained their lives for others, in an attempt to achieve Immortality for himself. Their combined lifespans, in effect, to extend his own. The relic was destroyed before Cassion and I left the caves." A side effect of what Arlo himself had done in order to break the curse, though he hadn't intended to destroy the relic itself. Just as well though. Better for it to not ever again fall into mortal hands.
word count: 1150
Post Reply Request an XP Review Claim Wealth Thread

Return to “Egilrun”