• Memory • [Hang Wood] You Stand Alone

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The capital city of the of Rynmere, here is seated the only King in Idalos.
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Solsarin
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[Hang Wood] You Stand Alone

Exerpt from Solsarin Ilduan's journal, dated: 7 Saun, 716

I often muse at those first days of feigned freedom. Had I chosen to speak, perhaps to beg those knights for their indulgence might I have been shown mercy? I think not. Murdered, I suppose, as I did unto them. So taken was I with the Flaying that I did not understand my limits; everything had come so easy at first, I did not guess at the power the addiction held over me. The Harvester knew; it warned me, I realized, yet also guided my hand to draw as much as I could, for as I found new heights so to did it. I knew then that I could trust no one. Why then did I follow into such blind idiocy? Did all our lives matter so little?
Unknown Trial, Ymiden, 713

Sol rubbed the fatigue from his eyes. The fat fellow he followed, Gerald he called himself, carried himself with a certain sort of confidence in his advance. How fortuitous the man found work as a guide, and Sol's dismemberment of previous clients left a gap in his work schedule. He recalled the fight - a brief struggle moreover - the sphere's heinous advantage, his callous murder of two Knights. No, they attacked first. Though did not his fault lay in the aggression of the legion? Bah. Sol swatted at thin air, physically wiping the thought from his mind. His legs burned. The strain of his recent ordeal played hell with his muscles; when was the last time he slept for more than a few hours? Suddenly his pack weighed him down, his shoulders hunched. Sweat dripped from his pale, wrinkled forehead. Now was not the time to stop. Sol grunted, shifted the weight of his gear and limped onward, favoring his left side now. The mind overpowered the body. Raw will kept him upright.

In the distance a treeline loomed. Above it thick, dark clouds cast out the sun and a grey sky expanded in all directions. Rain soon. Sol's ignorance of the land forced him to trust in this guide, this Gerald. This wood appeared healthier than the last. Lush, green trees greeted them; even so far as they were Sol made out bird song. Life. A gentle smile spread out over his countenance and for a moment his eyes lit up. The wind picked up about him, buffeting his form with a calm zephyre. Sol swayed with the breeze, catching himself before falling over entirely.

"Watch it now, Imperial. We'ven a ways ta'go yet, eh?" Gerald grinned over a shoulder at the man. "Stay'n on your feet will help." Sol's joy soured. Something about the man wreaked. He recalled the reaction, first fearful, but once Sol showed no signs of harm the fat-one retained an instant ease. Neither paid much mind to the fresh corpses then - a warning sign if any, but the power, the addiction drew too much of his attention. Stupid. "Here!" Fatman tossed some jerked meat behind him. It hit Sol square in the chest then dropped to the soft, grassy floor. "Keep'n your strength!" A groaned followed his body as he leaned over and liberated the food. Ah, more unflavored, chewy beef. His favorite.

A short trek brought the two of them to the base of the forest. Ahead several strings of bone hung from low branches. Each rattled in the wind sending a chilled music into the air. Beware, it said.

"This is the way to Andaris?" Sol's rasp of a baritone dripped with doubt. He rested a hand on the hilt of his blade, his eyes darting about. No road, not even a path. The occasional, spotted tree dotted the landscape up until the forest where mulch and bushes dominated below the canopy. From within a waft of birch and ash carried out with the wind. Natural scents. No rot, blood, or unwashed man. Still, Sol frowned and felt his shoulders stiffen.

"Aye," Gerald nodded. "The roads run'n risk'a bandits, an' its too long. Ya need a bed, fellow."

He lies, Devourer. This place masks a darkness.

"That is obvious." Sol mumbled to the expansive shadow behind him. "What choice do we have? We'd be lost."

"Eh? Speak'n up! Canne hear'ya mumblin'." Sol waved the man off. They shrugged together and the fat-one continued his ascent, stepping into the treeline with a jovial sort-of crunch. Sol blinked. He wiped the sweat from his brow and advanced, cursing under his breath all the way. He ducked beneath a string of bone and took a moment to study the decoration. The bottom held a human skull, while the rest consisted of the occasional arm-bone. A femur. How pleasant. He did admire the craftsmanship, for the thin wire made a poor host for such weight. Impressive, really.

The two crunched along the forest floor. Though their clumsy footfalls sent most of the forest beasts away, Sol found himself taken by the sheer vibrancy of life here. A pair of deer watch them from afar - accustom to the prattle of humans, apparently, but still poised for egress. What he thought were deer, anyway, his vision grew hazy. He found himself stumbling on more than one occasion, taking a moment to lean against a tree to catch his breath from no more than walking. Cramps wracked his body. His joints screamed for release. No. Still a ways to go yet. Sol inhaled and pushed himself upright, his head turning toward his fat guide. The man disappeared. Son of a bitch. Sol turned to his right, his left. He spun his head about in a wild search, his eyes widening.

"Gerlad?" Sol's call echoed across the tress with no response. Damn it.

Something approaches. The urgent hiss of the Harvester drew Sol's attention. He spun about, hand posed on his blade. His vision met with a cudgel with enough time to feel a fool before it cracked against his skull and the world faded to black.
word count: 1018
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Solsarin
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[Hang Wood] You Stand Alone

Sol grew tired of waking up in strange places. At least this time he could see, and what a sight. Before him a sprawl of a camp sat beneath a thicker portion of the wood's canopy. Scattered tents, a few wagons, and barrels of junk lay about, half concealed by overgrown flora. The scent of cooked meat filled the air from a makeshift spit erected over a central fire; two men sat beside it. One, clad in a set of full leathers, eyed his lunch hungrily, while the other - a massive, tower of a man - busied himself with a thick book. Both kept weapons nearby. Bandits? More knights? Not the latter. Sol saw no emblazoned armor. Their gear was unpolished and not uniform; one carried an axe, the other a pair of short blades.

A dull ache drew a groan from the mage. His entire body burned and now his head pulsed. From one hell into another. Sol rose an arm - or tried to; a tight pressure resisted the pull. A rope secured both hands behind his back and another bound his ankles while a third knot hung loosely about his neck. What a set up. Sol titled his head up, eyeing a rudimentary pulley system that threatened his life. He followed the rope up around a thick branch then down again. Out of reach, of course. Did they intend to hang him? Perhaps it kept him from attempting escape. Or struggle. Either way, Sol's countenance grew grim. At least they sat him upright on his knees.

You are not dead, this is good. A shadow darted into his vision. The fat one struck you. Many humans debated what to do with you, none of their opinions sound pleasant.

"Thanks for the help." Sol's voice thundered in his own head, yet the sarcasm still made it into his tone.

You are welcome, Devourer. The shadow pulsed as if it meant to show a point of pride.

"Not so loud." A hushed voice whispered to his left. Sol blinked. He craned his neck aside. A few feet away a woman sat with her hands bound and suspended in mid-air with a similar contraption to his noose. Long, red hair covered her face, caked with mud and riddled with dirt, it stuck to her face in matted locks. Sol imagined he looked no better, why, with his unkempt, full beard caught in a perpetual state of 'itchy.' Her garments, he noted, were torn, filled with holes and lacking in all the places one might wish to hide from a bunch of men in the forest. Green, uneven eyes stared back at him. One bigger than the other, a swollen, black bruised marred what might be a pleasant face under better circumstances. "You'll draw them over." Sol huffed. She glared.

"You seem upset. Bad morning?" Despite the snark, Sol quieted his voice, whispering now across the small gap. The woman's countenance contorted at first, her brows furrowing, but soon after her features softened.

"I'd rather them forget I'm here. They're not gentle." A flicker of disgust crossed her eyes. Sol grimaced. He knew the passions of lonely men.

"How long was I out"

"A day. They brought you in during the rains; you smell like wet dog. No offense intended."

"You get one freebie." Sol flashed the woman a grin. She spat. "I think I may-" He paused and eyed the two by the fire. Still distracted. "I may be able to break the ropes."

"Gonna chew through them, yeah?

"Something like that. I hope you can fight."

The woman opened her mouth to protest but only shook her head. She sighed. Sol grunted. He looked about the camp again ignoring that persistent pulse in his temples. Breath. No other bodies in the camp; they stood a chance against two. Maybe. The woman looked worse for wear and Sol's body felt like mush. Despite his respite he held little hope for success. No. No distractions. The rush of possibilities did little to still his mind. "Harvester. I need you to untie me."

Untie? The strange hemp utility? You overstep my abilities, Devourer, I do not exist in this realm as do you, but there are other ways. Summon Emea.

The woman eyed Sol quizzically. He ignored the stare. Emea? The mage's journal mentioned that. He meant there sphere. Time to focus. Sol imagined his void, a darkness inside his mind that he fed the distractions. First his pain. The ache in his muscles remained but his mind glossed over it. The bandits, the camp; his own, impending doom, all of it faded to black, even the sweet hunger. He heard the growls of his stomach, felt the dryness of his throat, and though the feeling remained Sol ceased to concern himself with the material. A cool, calm focus overtook a barely contained panic. He envisioned the same void outside his own mind now, a black, chaotic sphere that hovered above his shoulder. The air distorted. It shimmered, faded, then exploded into a black, cackling sphere the size of a fist. The magic ball phased in and out of existence, its form barely held into place. Sol groaned under the strain. He needed to hurry.

Lower it. To your hands, then expand it, I will direct the reality within. Do not tarry, Devourer, your energy wanes.

Sol nodded. He extended his otherworldly sense, his will, beyond his mind to the sphere. It lowered, slowly, its form almost sputtering as it engulfed a portion of the rope about his hands. Sol felt heat singe the edges of his skin and the ropes loosened. He pulled to little avail at first, then all at once the hemp dissipated. Sol threw his arms forward, lifted the rope from his neck, and hit the ground with an unceremonious thud. The sphere dissipated as his focus broke. From beside him he heard the woman gasp. Sol huffed. No time to waste. He groaned and brought his arms beneath his body and pulled at his feet, loosening the ropes enough to free his legs. Now the woman. A labored heave brought the man to knees as he scampered over to his imprisoned companion.

"Wha' tha fuck?!" A voice rose from the fire. The tower of a man stared at the two of them and their shenanigans. Shit.
Last edited by Solsarin on Sat Nov 05, 2016 2:45 am, edited 3 times in total. word count: 1068
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Solsarin
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[Hang Wood] You Stand Alone

Damn ropes. What sort of hempsmith practiced his elusive trade in the middle of fuck-all nowhere? Sol rolled his eyes and pulled at the bindings. His magic was nothing to the creator of these damnable knots.

"Any time now." The woman's voice held a raw sense of urgency. The dull thud of boots on dirt approached at haste. Sol pulled, prodded, and tore at one side of the knot. Part of it loosened. Victory! He examined the loop and continued to feed a piece of it back. Louder footfalls. He glanced up. The bandit came upon them, an axe brandished at his side. The woman vaulted to her feet as the large man ended his charge and kicked, her leg taking him in the knee and sending him to the ground in a heap. Sol blinked and titled his head to the side. "Don't stop!" She grunted and followed the bandit down, her legs wrapping around his head and neck. "Get the axe!"

As she choked him Sol placed a hand on his knee and hoisted himself to his feet. He stepped over the balding brute and grabbed at the axe's haft to no avail. A white-knuckled grasp held firm. Sol rolled his eyes and raised a foot before he slammed his full - albeit not so considerable - weight onto the bandit's bicep. Something snapped. The axe came free. He scooped it up and slashed at the hanging rope, freeing the woman and sending her to the ground. Whoops. She cursed and tumbled into a roll and wound up on her feet, coming face to face with the second camp-dweller. He smiled. She spat in his face.

"Axe!" Sol tossed the unwieldy weapon to his impressive ally. She, somehow, caught the weapon with still-bound hands and side-stepped a whirlwind of bladed strikes. Before Sol could act a hand latched to his leg and pulled him to the ground with another dull thump. Damn it all. The towering bandit glared at him, his face pale, one arm useless at his side. A foot lanced out and took the bandit in the jaw. A growl followed. Another kick. The grip loosened. Sol flailed his arms forward and pushed himself up. Now, to stay on his feet. His balance wobbled and he heard the bandit stir behind him. Focus. The sphere flickered into the air once again. It shifted as he directed it, the energy cackling with a vehemence of its own. The bandit let loose a blood curdling roar as the void passed through his chest. Sol spun about and grimaced at the lack of melted flesh. That was not how he remembered it.

You are weak still. The Harvester quipped.

The bandit's eyes seethed with rage as he stood. Sol ran. He crossed the camp and paused near one of the wagons. The back of it bristled with weapons - swords, arrows, various dull edges. There, amidst the myriad of weapons, he caught a glint of light off a jeweled dagger. He grabbed the hilt as the full weight of a abnormally sized bastards rammed into his torso. Both collapsed in a heap of sprawled limbs. Focus. Sol pushed the pain out of his mind and kept his sole attention on the dagger. The Aberration sphere flickered out of existence. Damn it. Never mind that, the two came to a halt and a fist found its way to Sol's chest. Once, twice, it paused only to change direction, lashing out at his face. The pain sent him reeling. His vision blurred. The bandit reared back for another blow. Sol screamed. He rose the dagger and shoved it deep into an exposed neck. Sol pulled the blade back and stabbed again. And again. A red, arterial spray covered the mage's face in the viscus liquid. It seeped into a ragged beard. A sickening gurgle escaped his throat before he died.

Sol grunted. He fell forward and gasped for ragged, raspy breaths. He was alive, but tired. So very tired. The last thing he saw was the woman embed an axe into the chest of a crying man before he lost consciousness.
Last edited by Solsarin on Sat Nov 05, 2016 2:43 am, edited 1 time in total. word count: 699
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Solsarin
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[Hang Wood] You Stand Alone

Sol awoke to the scent of cooked meat. He rolled over to find himself beneath the cover of a tent, his body covered in blankets. Nice change. A groaned escaped his lips as he sat up to still-aching muscles. He slept, yet he felt a continued pit in his stomach and was drenched in sweat. The promise of food lead him to action. A labored hoist brought him out of the tent to the same location.

The woman sat at the fire now. She used the same spit from before, lazily rolling some animal carcass over the flame. Beyond here, near the edge of camp, four bodies lay sprawled out; the two from before and another duo, the fat man included in their number. Sol crossed the small space between them and took a seat across from the fire.

"Morning." The woman's gaze flickered to the man. "I thought you'd be dead by now."

"I'm stubborn." Sol grunted and grabbed at a waterskin poised by the fire. He downed most of its contents in a single lift.

"A stubborn mage. I've never seen that sort of magic before and I can't say I like it." Her gaze narrowed. Sol grasped for a hilt on his waist. Nothing. Of course. "But," She continued. "I owe you for getting me out of those bindings. What the law doesn't know, yes?"

Sol's shoulders eased. "The law? What do you care of antiquated, mortal-made ethics?"

"I'm a Knight of Andaris," she quipped. Ah. Damn it. "And you're a Legionnaire, hm? Don't look so dumbfounded, the accent gives you away. A deserter, then?"

"Not by choice." Sol eyed the spinning meat. His stomach growled. Audibly. "My century sought to bypass the Eastern Settlements, take a port and invade Rynmere proper. As you most likely know things did not go well." The Knight barked out a laugh. She snorted and shook her head.

"Could say that. You won't survive long out here, Rynmere is still reeling against the skirmishes. There's a truce, now, but that won't stop the locals from hanging you. Or worse." She paused to hide a shudder. "I can take you to Andaris, for debts owed, but I can do no more. Ignoring your abilities is favor enough."

Sol shifted his attention to the now-dead fat guide. A slash carved a second grin across his chest; a deep, deadly gouge. Sol felt no pity, he only regretted his own blade had not done the deed.

"Solsarin." He glanced back at the woman. "My name is Solsarin Ilduan."

"Hesphali." She nodded. "Pleasure, I'm sure."
Last edited by Solsarin on Sat Nov 05, 2016 3:04 am, edited 1 time in total. word count: 447
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[Hang Wood] You Stand Alone

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Solsarin


Points!:

Story: 5/5
Collaboration: 0/ 5 (solo thread)
Structure: 5/ 5
Knowledge:

Endurance: The mind overpowers the body
Detection: The sounds of life in nature
Detection: Spotting someone who is lying
Aberration: Harvester: Learning the limitations
Aberration: Limitations of the sphere
Combat: Axe: Put your weight behind your attacks
Combat: Unarmed: Kick to the face
Hesphali: Knight of Andaris
Hesphali: Prepared to ignore your arcana under the circumstances

Loot:
NA
Fame:
-2 (acts of arcana)
Magic:
These points MAY be used for arcana

Overview:

General comments. Interesting! Good to see Sol's continuing understanding of his Domain Magic and how he starts to come to terms with it.
Story More complex than it first seemed, this was an interesting and well-woven story which gave an insight into Sol. I would just urge you to be wary when using magic, and remember the very addictive nature of Flaying. Obviously, this is a memory thread, so the addiction has worn off - but it was there and did most certainly happen.
Structure All good, no worries.

Please do PM me if you've got any questions
word count: 186
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~~Red in hoof and claw... ~~


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