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Community => Creative => Role-Playing Forum => Topic started by: Dragon Lord on June 04, 2012, 05:23:05 PM

Title: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Dragon Lord on June 04, 2012, 05:23:05 PM
General Edward Vanheim sat in his tent, staring at the sheathed sword lying on the table. The hilt was shaped like a dragon’s head with blade extending from the mouth. The handle was wire wrapped with another dragon’s head at the pommel. The scabbard was black with a silver flame design. The blade was very wide and thick and Edward knew that a large red stone was embedded near the hilt, contained by the scabbard.

“Why?” he sighed. “Why did the Emperor give this thing to me?”

“Because he doesn’t trust anyone else with its power,” a sly voice said from the entrance to the tent.  Edward looked up as frowned as he identified the man standing there. Captain Nathaniel Marciel. Marciel was a special envoy of the Emperor, outside the normal chain of command. Although Edward’s rank as Lord General of the Imperial Army meant that Marciel did have to answer to him, he knew that the man was a spy and an assassin who was likely working to an agenda of his own. He was also the man who had brought the object in question to the Emperor.

“The Ark of Fire was a momentous discovery,” Marciel continued, smiling. “Its power alone could tip the balance of the war. However, the Emperor is wary of giving such power to anyone. Your loyalty to the Empire is the stuff of legend, making you the perfect choice to wield it for the glory of Arcadia.”

“This much power should not be held by any man,” Edward sighed, once again turning to look at the sword. “It should be obvious. We can’t even touch the *Bleep* thing.”

 “That’s why the Imperial artisans crafted Brynhilda,” Marciel replied. “It contains the power of the Ark and allows mortals to safely harness its power. It also has the benefit of preventing anyone but you and the Emperor himself from using it.”

“I still don’t like it,” Edward said. “Now, what do you want, Captain?”

“I just came to check up on you,” Marciel said. “And to inform you that General Astal and General Verde are both on their way.”

“I see,” Edward said. General Bartholomew Astal was a good man and an old friend of Edwards. Frederic Verde, on the other hand, was known as the Butcher. He was vicious and well known for his opinion that all the peoples of Hellios were freaks and abominations that must be wiped out. Edward really didn’t like the man.

At that moment, a mild gust of wind signalled the appearance of Senna Vash, Edward’s bodyguard and attendant. She was short, barely five feet tall, with short blood hair and pale features. Despite her diminutive appearance, Senna was a dangerous assassin who was able to move at lightning speed over vast distances and remain completely invisible and undetected. Edward trusted her with his life. Senna’s family had been the protectors of the Vanheim family for centuries.

“My Lord Vanheim,” she said, bowing. “A division of Imperial Soldiers have been caught in an ambush. They are being wiped out.”

“Where?” Edward said, leaping to his feet.

“Several miles away,” Senna answered. “A Sigil has already been placed. We can teleport there immediately.”

Edward was almost at the door when Marciel called out.

“General Vanheim,” he said. “Surely this is a perfect opportunity to test Brynhilda, saving the lives of your own men.”

Edward turned to look at Marciel for a moment then nodded to Senna. The woman bowed and retrieved the sword, careful not to touch the handle. He took it from her, frowning, a turned to leave the tent.



 The Sigil, a magic pattern that allowed almost instant transportation to another Sigil aligned with it, flashed as Edward, Senna, Marciel and another 5 soldiers materialised on the edge of a large valley. Edward could already hear the sounds of battle; the clash of steel, the blasts of fire and lightning cast by the mages on both sides and the screams of the dying. He wasted no time in rushing along the cliff side until he could see the fight properly.

The small and dwindlining group of soldiers wearing the armour of the empire were surrounded on all sides by the Hellios forces. Beastmen engaged them head on while the Featherfolk mages flew above at fired spells and arrows at the defenders. The Arcadian mages were barely holding a protective barrier above their heads. It was only a matter of time before the mages ran out of mana and the Arcadians were wiped out.

“Now is the time, General Vanheim,” Marciel said.

Edward frowned as he pulled Brynhilda from its scabbard. The blade was inscribed with runes that channelled and focused the Ark of Fire that was pulsing with red light near the hilt. He sighed and raised to weapon above his head.

“Brynhilda!” he shouted. The blade burst into crimson flames and Edward grabbed the handle with both hands. He raised the weapon up and brought it crashing down to the the ground. The flames exploded from the blade, racing across the mile or more that lay between the observers and the battle below in a matter of seconds. The Beastmen never stood a chance. The wave of mystical fire roared through them, burning them to ash. The battle ceased as both sides saw the devastation that had ripped through the battle field, cutting the Hellios force in half. Edward swung again and another wave of deadly fire cut through the other side of the Hellios forces. The two huge walls of flames had formed a clear path for the Arcadian’s to escape. The surviving Hellios, seeing the power the Empire now controlled, fled.

Edward sheathed Brynhilda and turned to leave. Marciel was practically cheering.

“That was truly magnificent!” he laughed. “Such power! And that was just one piece of Ark! Imagine what we could do with all five!”

“Yes,” Edward said as he walked back to the Sigil, Senna close behind. “What could we do?”

He looked down at his hands as smoke rose from his steel gauntlets. His hands had been burned.


Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Ultima on June 04, 2012, 09:21:36 PM
"The Ark of Fire?" Caius asked without glancing at the Featherfolk messenger, "It has been a thousand years and dismissed by many to be nothing more than legend or a fairy tale to scare babes in bed at night. How did the Imperials find one?" Envoys and councillors of the seven races all had their eyes glued to the trembling lower lip of this poor Falcon.

"That is unclear," he replied, "What we do know is that it is in possession of one General Vanheim. Why the Emperor would part with his key to victory has caused many a rumour to stir."

"Edward Vanheim!" Thenna, councillor of the feline races hissed, "The scourge of my people."

"Peace Thenna," Caius growled, "There is a time and a place to reopen old wounds. Vanheim's loyalty to the Empire is absolute. Nothing will turn him from his duty to Arcadia. What does this tell us?"

The envoy of the birds spoke next, and elegant owl by the name of Ro. "The Emperor trusts this man completely and that they have little idea of how to use the Arks to their full potential."

"Exactly," replied Caius, "Messenger, tell your people they have my thanks. You have bought us much needed time." The messenger bowed then left. "We will need double the patrols on every border. Any Arcadian that gets within arrow distance of our shoreline will die, no exceptions." The Merking nodded silently before leaving. "The rest of you, inform every willing citizen that we need a continent wide search for the Arks hidden on Hellios. Ro, send messengers to your more reclusive tribes, requesting their assistance. We need to find an advantage quickly."

"Lord Caius!" another messenger shouted as he entered, "We lost contact from our landing party in the Eastern lowlands of Arcadia!"

"Our time just became shorter..."

*1000 miles to the south-west*

Feraal sat at the bar of a dingy tavern, impervious to the befuddled gazes of those around her. She had a more important goal in mind than bedding some witless human. She ordered a pint of their finest mead and asked that it be sent over to an impressively obese man in the corner of the room. As the bar maid walked out from behind the counter Feraal stuck out her foot causing the human to trip.

She fell right into a group of exceedingly drunk sailors who began pawing and clawing at her as she screamed in pain and the rest of the staff fought with the group to save her dignity. Feraal stepped lightly up, danced over to the fat man on her feather light paws. "Good entertainment tonight," she said with a dazzling smile before impaling the man's neck with a poison dart. He was dead in seconds.

Still invisible to the other tenants due to the cacophony of noise, Feraal swiped a brilliant, emerald jewel that managed to dazzle her even in the low candlelight and walked out of the tavern. The noise followed her all the way to the edge of the village.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: KainCrow on June 05, 2012, 01:50:50 AM
"Hey, did you hear?" A drunken bear-man spoke aloud, "Another battle occured near the Trench! Those *wark*ing humans never know when to give up!"
"Come on, everyone knows that," another snorted, leaning towards the bear-man, "but that's not only thing- the rogues are turning more vicious these days. I heard the villages closer to the Trench were attacked more frequently now," he shuddered, glancing shiftily around the bar, "I hope nothing happens to our village.."

'...Well, I didn't know they were attacking that often...?' Sinkair frowned, shaking her head as she toyed with her shiny glass cup. She did not visit Hellios' villages for past month, too busy chasing down an annoying rogue demi-human thief who stole the necklace she really wanted to buy. No one, she meant no one, stole things she was negotiating to get! Smiling dreamily as she remembered how she left the annoying thief tightly tied by the ropes in the middle of no-where, Sinkair poked her glass absent-mindedly- the dazzling light around the glass was entertaining her enough for the night.

"Ms. Sinkair?"
"...?" Sinkair blinked and tilted her head, not expecting anyone to recognise her tonight, "Who..?"
"Ah, you don't remember? I once worked with you in patrols at the borders!"
"...Ohhh.. It was nice, shiny..."

The patrol guard sweated, as Sinkair focused on the completely different aspect of the said experience. That answer was enough to make the guard realise that Sinkair had recognised him, but was making fun of him instead of being serious. Still, the other guards who came along with him frowned, unsure of her identity.

"You are sure she is the same person who saved your life? Shs is just--"
"Oi, watch it!" The guard cried out, looking personally offended at his friend's question,"I told you she is easily distracted when she isn't being serious! Ms. Sinkair, how have you been?"
"Mmm.. Shiny hunting!" Sinkair smiled happily, although her eyes trailed the patrol guard who still seemed skeptical, "I just managed to hunt down annoying rogue thief who stole the necklace I wanted.. He had a lot of shiny things. Though.. Heard there's more rogues around these days--" Sinkair's tone slightly changed, her eyes suddenly completely focused on the guards, "Good for my line of business, but not for your work, I presume?"

The guards excluding the one who knew her before looked surprised at her sudden change of attitude, but the guard who recognised her shook his head, sitting down at an empty chair nearby.

"Not really- if you are searching for rogues to hunt, you should head more north, closer to the Trench," the guard remarked, waving at the barmaid to come near, "You don't plan to join in the war anytime soon, do you?"
"And give up all the shinies?" Sinkair pouted, looking rather cute- but next moment, she glanced at her glass of milk, her light blue eyes darkening with emotions, "No, the war is not my concern- my concern is what interests me most. Blood, death, pain.. I am not interested with those things.. I saw and experienced enough of them. Treasure hunting is fun.. And the rogues have interesting shinies."
"But the war is taking interesting turn I heard- Oi! No fights!"

The guard shouted once, noticing the fight the barmaid was busy attempting to stop. Many demi-humans winced and covered their ears- with their sharp sense of hearings doubled with their drunken state, the shout was loud enough to make them wince. As the fight stopped, the drunks realising the guards in the pub, the guard turned again and spoke to Sinkair conversationally.

"And that involves something- shiny," the guard grimaced at the irony of speaking in a way that Sinkair would speak, "Have you ever came across rumours or stories about jewels with magical power?"
"...Huh..." Sinkair tilted her head, frowning, "So this is not a social visit, is it? Well, I thought so- last time I heard, you were busy fighting in the war," Sinkair shrugged, glancing at the finally approaching barmaid, "I want a shot of something strong- anything strong, really-"
"-it's on me," the guard quickly interrupt, making Sinkair focus on him again, "so, anything you heard, Ms. Sinkair?"

Sinkair pouted, realising that he wasn't about to let her go easily.. Glancing at the guards who were slightly away, Sinkair measured the level of noise in the pub- no one was close enough to overhear their conversation except the guards, and considering who the guard she was talking to was, they must be trustworthy individuals..
As the barmaid brought their orders and moved away to serve other tables, Sinkair leaned against her chair and crossed her legs, tugging down her hood lower so that no one would able to see her frowning face.

"..Jewels or shiny things with magical power.. Most famous one would be the Ark of Infinity, but I doubt someone as practical as you would bother with such thing.. Even among the treasure hunters, not many believe in those legends. It's more practical for us to track down more common- and more sensible- items to find.. Not to mention the fact that many mages had been trying to recreate that thing and left around enough fakes. It's rare, but it's not impossible to come by jewels or items with magical power if you know where to look for. I did hear rumours about humans trying to locate Ark of Fire-" Sinkair scoffed, her voice full of dark amusement, "Those idiotic researchers, according to my sources, had help of the Arcadia's government.. Fools. I haven't heard anything about them recently- either they all got killed by Arcadia after actually found that thing, or just hit with all dead-ends. Either way, it's better if they don't find that now.. I doubt Arcadia's higher-ups would leave that kind of powerful object in the hands of the researchers."
"The Ark of Fire is already in hands of the Arcadians," the guard remarked, raising his own glass to hide his grimace, "half of my comrades were burnt to ashes with its flame.. I had displeasure of witnessing Vanheim of Arcadia using its power with my own eyes."
"..." Sinkair gave a look at the guard who kept his stoic expression, then sighed, "Well, that's unfortunate.. But if you want to know, according to legends that do say that Ark of Fire was left at the Arcadia's territory, all of them say that Ark of Wind was hidden at the opposite place.. Or so I heard."
"You are saying that Ark of Wind is in our land?"

Sinkair lowered her head. She heard rumors.. Nothing solid, nothing perfect. These kind of occuasions annoyed her endlessly.. Poking at the guard's forehead, and making his ears twitch with annoyance, Sinkair pouted, her voice suddenly childish.

"I hear things, but whether they are truthful or not- that's always in question. If you want facts, go find scholars and researchers! Well, off you strut, mister! If I find anything, I will let you know."
"You aren't going to help us much, are you?" the guard raised an eyebrow, his ears twitching again, "you are impossible, Ms. Sinkair. How much?"
"Don't bother," Sinkair answered, shrugging, "you would have gotten same information from anyone else who has enough contacts. But if I were you, I would try asking around mer-folk legends about Ark of Water," Sinkair tilted her head, her earring catching the light as it slipped out of her hood, "the Arks, supposedly, releases their power continuously and affects the nature unless someone, or something is suppressing or using the power. Fire burns, wind blows- water flows. Strong, clean, unchanging source of water, or current... I think mer-folks would know, unless it's located deep in the Arcadia. I will let you know if I do come across anything solid-" Sinkair scoffed, her voice sarcastic, "well, as you oh-so-elegantly put it, the Arks are shinies.."

With that remark, Sinkair stood up and walked out of the pub-- and the guard barked out a laughter, shaking his head with exasperation as other guards approached.

"Well, well, Sinkair Ira Zephyrus, she hasn't changed at all.."
"..Captain Kaeda Anima, is she always like that?"
"What, not being serious, or being sarcastic?"
"...What about both?"
"Well," the canine captain shook his head, emptying his own glass of alcholic beverage, "She just has her own twisted sense of humor.. Even if she acted like she wouldn't do anything for us, those information she gave was probably all she knew about them at the moment," the captain chuckled, looking amused, "And now with solid evidence that the Arks are not just fairytales.. With that curiousity border-lining obssession, she would try to find them by herself- although she would back off immediately if she feels its too risky. Not to mention that she is quite reliable and wouldn't want to keep such a dangerous thing with her.. We should inform Lord Caius about what we have got.. Let's move- Oi!" Captain Kaeda smirked playfully, "No alcholic beverages on duty!"

The guards protested, their answering voices equally playful.

"You just drank as well!"
"Not fair, Captain Kaeda!"
"I drank because I was having a chat with Sinkair, what's your excuses?" Captain Kaeda chuckled, shaking his head, "I was joking, but come on- we should go back to our camp and send messenger to Lord Caius."
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: rsslayersr on June 05, 2012, 02:37:18 PM
OoC: Yes, I want in on the action! Kainy, explanation below for you.

She coughed as she blew away the dust from the tome. "Another big one.".  The candles flickered and a gust of wind blew inside. The door opened. "Alice?" a voice exclaimed. "What is it now, Tobias. It was just starting to get interesting!" Alive whined.
"It's the Five, they want to speak with you.." the young Mreaster said. Alice turned her head around, making her hair swirl over her shoulder. "It looks like you'll have to wait, big friend." she caressed the tome before her on the oak table.

Alice reached for her bow and quiver, securing it on her back and stood up, now facing Tobias. "Please, go first" she signed. The footsteps echoed through the hollow library as they both walked towards the exit. The light shined too bright for Alice her eyes to comprehend. Has it been this long that she's seen the light of day? Holding her arm before her eyes, Tobias opened the large gate-like door, fully enlightening the insides of the hallway.

Her eyes finally started to adjust, she looked down from this high place. The library was located on this steep mountain, to ensure no treasure hunter from human kind could reach it. From this high, she could see the green forest grounds change into he desert like outskirts, but it was about a three hour flight away. The waterfall roared as it rushed downwards. "Ready?" Tobias shouted, Alice nodded, her face still worried about the sun's light. Tobias dived forward. A few seconds later, she did the same. Her view was spectacular, the rocks and trees grew bigger with the second. Her eyes could now see the details from far away, her clan's village. She spread her wings, making her angled flight horizontal. A few wing beats later she was balanced and stationary again. "Always the daring one, aren't you?" Tobias said with a grin. Alice answered the question with a gust from her white wings, throwing Tobias off balance. She started sniggering.

They both started to decent into the village. After landing, a group of local birdling children started to gather around them, cheering and what not. Alice enjoyed the company, lifting the little Celine of the ground. "Ah, stop it!" Celine said with a scared voice. 'Put me dow-hown!" she whined. Alice laughed and placed the birdling on the ground. "That's no way to look at the sky, how could you fly with the fear of falling." Alice laughed, Celine frowned a bit. "Alice, Alice! How was is up there?" Celine asked in high interest. The children started to chatter in chaos. "Yeah, Alice, Yeah, whats it like!" was the general thought between them. The chaos overwhelmed her.

"Alice, stop playing with those kids! We have work to do." Tobias said with a temper. Alice sighed. "Kids, another time, this one says we have work to do.". They started to walk away from the center of town. "Alice, you really should start to act like your age. You're an of age Dove, purist in kind." Alice sighed again. "Dove this, responsibility that. Come on! We're Featherfolk, we're more free then almost anybody else and what do we do? Exactly, nothing."
"Well.. after the war.."
"You don't have to tell me anything about the war! If anyone knows the most, it's me!"
Tobias looked her in the eyes. "Well, it does not matter now. Alice, will you go inside?" The large structure in front of them was a temple. It was carved out from the rock that stood here long ago. The detail in it was magnificent. The white marble was a jewel in this region, to think a whole building could be build out of it.

Inside was even more spectacular. The spiral staircase had a beautiful flow into it, the floor reflected the ceiling that was painted over with a spectacular sky. It had many rooms, the chance that refugees came by where great in the time of its build, but the most interesting room was upstairs, the Council room. The Five spend half of their days there 'counseling', Alice was skeptical about that.

Tobias walked up the stairs, Alice followed without talking. She focused on his wings. The white glow went down to the tips, which where gray. Only the Mreast had this.

The room contained a marble round table that was attached to the floor, it was carved out this way. Five men were seated there, all of them shared characteristics of each other. The five were brother by blood, sons, made by the marriage between the Breh and the Mreast. Long before this village was made, the Breh and Mreast were enemies from each other. A treaty made a stop to it. This was long ago. Since then, they've lived together. Children born from the blood of both families were supposed to bring luck, they show the bond we created since our little stopped.

"Magisters, as you asked, I've brought Alice with me."
"Please, sit." the man in the middle said. His dark beard made him different from the rest of his brothers.
"I prefer the stand, Magister." Alice spoke back
"Sit." he repeated. Alice removed the bow from her back and handed it over to Tobias. He bowed to the Five and stepped backwards.

Five brothers, Marshel, Maverick, Bernhard, Binter and Brom. Brom was the eldest, the man of tactics, the leader. All of them have a history. Mashel was a huntsman, Maverick a smith, Bernhard a mason, Binter a craftsman and Brom was the squire of his father. Nothing important about this, it's just the chaos that went through Alice her head. She stared at Brom's rough brown beard. It was getting more grey with the years.

"I'm sorry to ask, but why am I here." she spoke.
"Shortly, some terrible news has reached our ears."

"And this has to do with me, because.."
"Please, let us finish. I'll get to the point. The Ark of Fire has been discovered at the other side of the Trench."

Alice's eyes grew somewhat bigger, her interest grew. "The legends.." she mumbled.
"Yes, the legend. The legends seem to be true. This can bring chaos to our town, so please, restrain yourself from sharing this with the rest." Alice nodded. "But.. I.. What is my part in this?"



OoC: Kainy, the Five aren't important NPC's, later, contact will only go through Brom. His history can be of interest. Same goes for the girl Celine, she's not important, but someone else who's not introduced is. Tobias, he is worthy for your topic.
As you can read, Alice is of the 'Dove' type.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: MegaFun on June 05, 2012, 02:47:47 PM
"I heard there was another fight just now."

The voice startled Petyr, sitting at the edge of the windowsill. The shock almost caused him to fall out, although he managed to grasp the edge of the window with his arm. His right hand had reflexively found its way to the hilt of the dagger strapped onto his side.

"Don't startle me like that, Lyria" he said, annoyed. "People knock for a reason."

"But the door's open."

Lyria Greyfang approached Petyr with her usual cheeky smile. Her blonde hair and brown eyes glistened in the evening sun, in stark contrast to Petyr's dark hair and light eyes. She and her brother were hunting on the outskirts of the village when they had found him outside this small, peaceful settlement bordered by vast green steppes to the north and the vast blue of the Trench to the south. She has since then been his fifteen-year old younger sister and accompanies Petyr in his hunts from time to time.

Petyr has been most grateful to the Greyfangs; while it pains him to admit this, in the short two years that he has lived in their care, he knows them better than his own birth family. They have accepted him regardless of his history and the hostile glances thrown at their house by other villagers from time to time. His silence on his past have spawned some dark rumors, which fly around the village like a flock of seagulls (none of which sadly stray too far from the truth), and at times he could still feel animosity in the air even after two years of being in the village. But as far as he was concerned, everyone had every right to feel that way.

"So, you had some news for me just now," Petyr said. "Arcadians?"

Lyria nodded. "Yeah, just a few hours ago earlier around noon."

"Word sure travels fast around here," Petyr sighed.

"Yeah, but that's probably because the Lord General has decided to try out his new toy. He unleashed hell upon them... quite literally. I'd heard that those men were burnt to a crisp."

"Well, *Bleep* those Arcadians," Petyr growled. "I can taste the war turning sour very soon. Hellios must either be planning a major attack, or if not they must at least have fortified their defenses at the borders. The power of the Arks is a force to be reckoned with..."

"If only they would all burn themselves to death with it," Lyria interrupted. "... Is what you're thinking right now, isn't it?"

Petyr chuckled. "I really do hope so. This is strange for an Arcadian to say, but I pray every night that the Hellios will be successful in finding their Arks and destroy this filthy Empire and all the rotten officials who serve under it."

Petyr stood up from the edge of the window. He walked over to his table, yanked the drawer open and grabbed a bunch of vials filled with a clear liquid. He shoved the vials into his hunting pack and grabbed his stash of throwing daggers from another drawer underneath it.

"I'm going for a hunt. I'll bring a nice deer back for you and Fernis," Petyr said. "Speaking of Fernis, when does he get back, anyway? He seems to be rather busy lately."

"Fernis should be back around sundown. With the war and the tensions in the air, there's been a high demand for equipment, particularly swords. Most are probably mercenaries looking for some profit out of all this fighting. Others are treasure hunters looking for the one remaining Ark on Arcadia and other treasure," Lyria explained. The thought of the war made her depressed, so she abruptly attempted to switch the subject with the first thing that came into her mind, although that next subject wasn't that much more cheerful either. "By the way, Petyr, you haven't gone out for a hunt this week... how are you feeling? Any contracts lately?"

"I'm fine... but I do need to feed the devil," Petyr muttered. "There haven't been any contracts... at least not from anyone outside the village. The other day I received one, but my target was some important council member of the Fishermen's Guild. Of course I rejected it. Wouldn't want to cause any trouble in this village, otherwise the villagers might just snap and hand me over to the Empire on a silver platter."

Lyria backed away. She could sense the mild tone of anger in his voice, which was only the very beginning of what would happen if he hadn't "fed the devil" for weeks. Once upon a time, there was a particularly stormy season where it rained fire and ice every day of the week. Petyr hadn't gone on his hunt in about two or three weeks. He began shrieking, throwing all sorts of books, weapons, and other things around his room and one night, he entered into an enormous argument with Fernis. Lyria didn't witness it, but she was genuinely terrified. She could have sworn she was this close to losing one of her brothers. The argument, fortunately, did not end disastrously, but Petyr disappeared for two nights. When he returned, he had thankfully calmed down and returned to his usual self.

"Alright then, brother, take care. Try for the white-horned stag if you see one; Fernis alwayss go crazy over the meat," Lyria chuckled. The white-horned stag had the most tender and flavorful meat of all deers in Arcadia, and they are only sighted in the south. No one would even find them near the capital, especially with all the violence that has battered the surrounding lands. Selling their meat to the capital is arguably one of the most profitable ways of living.

"Thanks, Lyria. I'll be back," Petyr replied as he disappeared from the hallway.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Metal Chocobo on June 05, 2012, 04:45:52 PM
The ocean winds blew salty air across the decks of the Arcadian ships. Isaac stood on the leading ship, eyes closed as he focused on the work of the golems around him.
When the Arcadians had first tried to cross the Trench, the Merfolk had been waiting. Many men died. The golems could change things. They stood along the edges of each ship, a cross between sentinel and cannon, and fired into the depths at any aggressor that dared approach.
Isaac sighed and left the golems to their duty. If the Merfolk had found the Ark of Water then this fight would not have been so simple. The Ark must still be hidden.

Isaac sensed another golem approaching. It could only be Cilia. He could see his own back through her eyes, she glanced to the side and he saw the terrified captain beside her.

"Captain, how can I help you?" Isaac asked, before turning and bowing. "The war golems clearly cause you some measure of discomfort, I doubt you would be up her with them without a reason."

The captain cleared his throat and answered, "We have been asked of our progress. In truth, we are behind schedule, the golems weigh the ship down more than we expected. We will likely arrive tomorrow. I am afraid the golems will have to watch the seas for another night."

As the captain waited for an answer, every second golem on each the ships suddenly jumped overboard, hitting the water with a loud splash and causing the boats to jump from the change in weight.
"Now we can arrive tonight, and I suspect the Merfolk will be too busy now to bother us." Isaac replied.

"You just cut the invading force in half!" The captain yelled in fury, "You were paid well for those golems, when the generals hear of this-"

"They are not gone. They are merely underwater. They don't breathe and water takes quite some time to destroy stone. The will arrive tomorrow as you said and then they will reinforce our landing party. I spent  a great deal of time making them, I will not cast them aside so easily." Isaac retorted, cutting the captain off.

"V-very well then, but you should still consult with a real military officer before splitting the forces." The captain responded, trying to sound dignified, before stepping back below decks."

"Cilia?"

"Sir?"

"It is time you left. The bookstore in the city at the foot of the Iskandar. You claimed its owner had a rare text on the Order of the Grey and the Arks. Based on that pillar of fire and smoke over there, I suspect the General has played his hand. The world knows the Arks are not a myth. The price on that book will soon be blood, so move quickly."

"Very well, Sir. You mean to attack the Iskandar? Shall I wait in the town for your arrival?"

"That pillar of light is the bane of our airships. The Featherfolk will control the skies so long as the crystal at the summit can shoot our ships down. We will destroy it and take the Demi-human's last advantage from them. Return to me when you have the book. Remaining would be less suspicious, but I would rather no one had the chance to steal it from you."

Cilia nodded. Grand white wings sprouted from her back and she took off into the sky.
Isaac watched her leave, and viewed the land ahead through her eyes. The war and the return of the Ark coinciding was less than convenient but he suspected that was fate's hand in all this. Where the two nations warred there would be the Ark, so for the Ark to return, there would have to be war.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Ultima on June 05, 2012, 05:51:58 PM
“An army of stone soldiers have managed to punch a hole through our defences,” the Merking told the council, his voice rife with concern, “They have begun their march into the settlement of Iskandar. We will be unable to detect their ships for a hundred miles in either direction if it falls.”

“Thenna,” Caius said, “Ready you’re most skill assassins. I will take a small raiding party and draw their attention. Get into position and repel them from the town.” He turned back to the Merking. “Feign a retreat around the beaches of Iskandar and wait until they drop their guard before burning their ships.” Thenna and the Merking both nodded before rising and exiting the council chambers. Caius turned to his assistant. “Have our mages begin drawing up a teleportation sigil.”

“High Councillor,” Ro began, “The Featherfolk bring news. An ancient and most reclusive clan has recently been stolen from. Among the items was an emerald that shone brighter than the noonday sun.”

“Ro, reach your point swiftly please,” Caius growled.

“Our scholars believe it to be the Ark of Air,” he said simply.

Caius sat back down and thought for a moment. “Good work, trace it’s path as best you can. Have Rangoh and his Lizard spies help you if more close quarters spy work is required. I will return when we have defended or retaken Iskandar.”

Caius picked up his shining broad axe and strode from the chambers.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Feraal threw the emerald across her employer’s desk.

“Impressive,” the broad-chested, black-haired human said, “Was it difficult to acquire?”

She audibly snorted at this question. Feraal was only sent the toughest jobs and most extreme assassinations. This particular one was pedestrian compared to others over the past year.

Joeny touched the gem and began to roar in agony. He flailed and thrashed about the desk before being catapulted backwards across the room.

Feraal rushed over to check his breathing and his pulse. Both were non-existent. “This should be interesting,” she thought, drawing her daggers and darts before leaping lithely into the ceiling as a dozen of Joeny’s bouncers lumbered into the room.

“Master Joeny!” one called in a dull, stupid tone, “Master Joeny?!” He spotted the limp figure of Joeny and rushed over. When he realised his master was dead, he yelled, “Search the building, the assassin is here!”

“Stupid ape,” Feraal thought, “The assassin is a jewel.” She shot two darts at the guards at the door, dropped down and skewered two more cronies facing away from her. Sensing movement from behind, she ducked under a vicious swipe from a sword and impaled another unwitting brute on it. She darted and weaved around the room, carving the bodies of her former employer, until only one face remained; Mace, leader of Joeny’s entourage. “This is for my childhood,” she whispered in his ear. Feraal cut off his testicles before stabbing him in the stomach; a very painful way to die. She swiped the emerald off of Joeny’s desk and made a swift get-away.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Dragon Lord on June 05, 2012, 07:45:20 PM
Leon and his four companions were huddled in a cave in the hills overlooking the Hellios city Iskandar. They were waiting for an Arcadian attack that was supposed to occur any day now but after more than two weeks hiding they were starting to get restless. They had very little to do since they couldn’t risk being spotted by Beastman or Featherfolk patrols. Getting caught behind enemy lines would be very bad.

“Come on,” Steeg groaned. “How much longer are we going to have to wait? We’ve been sitting here forever! When are we gonna see some action?”

“It’s been a fortnight you big brute,” Valeria growled at the huge, muscular Northlander.

“And you’ve been complaining non-stop since we arrived,” Dimitri added.

Valeria Astal was the daughter of a prominent Arcadian noble and the niece of General Bartholomew Astal. She was also a very dangerous swordswoman. Dimitri Rozenmarc came from a family of frontline soldiers and was very skilled with a spear. While they argued constantly with each other, and Steeg the Barbarian, there was none better Leon would rather have beside him in a fight. The last member of the group was the fair young woman named Elisa Rivers. Much like Leon, she was an orphan with magical ability, but rather than a combat mage, Elisa was a healer and a Summoner.

Leon stood at the mouth of the cave, half watching the city and half listening to his friends bicker. Elisa came up to him and smiled.

“You seem tense,” she said.

“Who? Me?” Leon laughed. “No way, just a little bored is all. I’m actually looking forward to a little excitement.”

“We’ll certainly get that,” Elise replied, looking out at the city. “It’s very beautiful isn’t it? Pity all this is about to be destroyed.”

“Yeah,” Leon sighed.

“Do we know what kind of force the Empire’s going to deploy?”

“No clue,” Leon said. “But I’m guessing it won’t be hard to miss. The strategic value of this city is enormous. Even if we just destroy it, it’ll leave the Hellios military blind in this area and give us a beachhead.”

“What about our orders?” Elise asked after a few minutes. “We’re to push through the city to the archives? Why?”

“The top brass wants something called the ‘Ark of Infinity’, whatever that is,” Leon answered. “There’s supposed to be information about it in the city, maybe even the Ark itself.”

“The Ark of Infinity was broken into five pieces over a thousand years ago,” Valeria said, standing up. “The legends say it was some ultimate power that was too dangerous so a group of wizards split it and scattered the fragments over Era. The fragments are supposed to be really powerful on their own.”

“Whatever they are,” Leon continued. “Apparently, Captain Marciel got his hands on one of these Arks, although General Vanheim has it now. Our orders are to find any information about the Arks and make sure it survives the battle and reaches the General’s hands, before anyone else.”


Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: rsslayersr on June 05, 2012, 10:18:02 PM
"Visit the High Council? Join the upcoming war?" She sounded worried "Yes indeed, my child."
Alice tried to understand what was said to her. The word 'war' scared her.
"Again, why me?" her face showed a strange kind of confusion. "You are the only one here with enough knowledge about The Ark and all its legends." The Ark was being constructed again. Last time.. Alice tried to forget what she was thinking. "You'll be of good use there. The Council will inform you with everything. For now, rest." Alice nodded to Brom's words and stood up. She bowed, turned around and started to walk out of the room. "Before I go, Magister." she stopped for a second. "What are you intending to do with The Ark, when in your possession?" Alice turned her head around. "Use it, of course." With this in her head, she walked away.

Now outside, Alice started to enjoy the weak gusts of wind that past her whole body. She closed her eyes, the sun was still hurting her eyes. "Your bow." Tobias handed over the beautifully constructed longbow. Its brown wood looked smooth and without scratches, except for the carvings. "They've told me you have one day until departion. The Townsfolk already started to gather resources for your trip. Again, utmost importance that you-" Alice interrupted him.
"Don't talk about the Ark, something something. I know!"

"Well then, shall we?" Tobias asked. "Shall we what? Not more politics I hope!" Tobias started to smile. "No, this is surely something more fun for both of us. Minotaurs are roaming on the east side of the mountain, we'll send some fear into them." Alice started to stretch her wings, same with her arms. She moaned a bit of pleasure. "It's still morning, isn't it? Well then, shall we?"
Wasn't that what I.. never mind, let's find some Minotaur to hunt." Tobias started to ascent into the sky.

A minute later, the mountain was already in reach. "Do you know how many?" Alice asked. "I'm not sure, probably seven, maybe more. Scouts. Why?" Alice let of a grin. "I wanted to know on how much fun I was depending.". She accelerated, leaving Tobias behind her back. His view was quite.. peculiar. "Tobias, come on! This girl needs action!"

The Bullmen were marching up towards the hill. They were scouts for sure, since their numbers were low. "This could be interesting." Alice thought to herself. She dived downwards, getting in range for the first attack. Tobias unsheathed his blade. It was a silver sword. It reflected light and broke it into blue and green, from different angles it looked magical. The sword was made of a Adamantal metal, it was rare, but gathereble around here. Alice reached out for two arrows and secured it into her bow. As she stretched the cord, she lowered it. "Hey brutes!" she shouted to the Minotaurs. "Alice.." Tobias growled and her dived quickly to the fiends below. "Please, reacquaint yourselves with our forest rules. Keep out." she aimed and shot the two arrows. They were filled with elastic energy and with impact, launched one Minotaur backwards. It cried in pain.

Tobias was already in reach and swung his sword, making a wound through the leather armour of the beast. One tried to attack him from behind, but an arrow was already destined for him. It hit him in the back, making him die instantly. She aimed again, hitting the arm of another, Tobias finished him by piercing the sword through his stomach.

"Three down.. now this one.." Alice already prepared the next arrow, it hit the shoulder of the already wounded Minotaur, it now fell on the ground. The remaining three now fled into the woods. Alice descended, all this flying started to ask from her. She hit ground. Two of the Minotaurs were still alive, Tobias walking up to the one most near, and struck the sword through his torso, a quick death.

The last one coughed some blood up, he almost drowned into it. Alice walked up to him, pushing him on its side with her foot. The two arrow stuck out of his torso, it wounded him badly. "Tell me, you knew this wouldn't work. Why still do it." Alice said while shaking with her head. The Minotaur growled. "War's coming!" It coughed and died shortly after that. "Word is spreading fast. Alice, we should head home." Alice broke off the feathers from the arrows, who knows when she'll let some other fall.

She flapped her wings and started to depart from this location. They reached familiar territory again, the library. "Tobias, please go on without me, I have some business to finish here. Tobias agreed and went of on his own. Alice landed on the little platform and walked into the faintly lightened corridor. The tome on the oak table was untouched. She opened it, the book gave a squeaking sound of the ages. "Four elements, one to bind them together. I know this story, but the detail in this one.. Two in each region.. Fire in Arcadia. Stable in the hand of.. what's this? Tincediara? Is this elvhen?"

She started to read further on the next page.  "A metal from the holy mountains in Arcadia.. but which one.. Properties.. Discovered by the Order of Gray? It's.. This is the only metal than can harvest the power safely. Why is it never mentioned in the others?" Alice rubbed of the dust on the side, making the book title visible. "Arcium Omiamus.. Everything about the old Arcadium.. this.." She ripped out some of the pages and secured it into her pouch. "Off I go then.."

OoC: Yup, I'm having a three post long intro teeheehee
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: jedakiller on June 05, 2012, 11:29:22 PM
OoC: Yes, yes. Even I'm still part of it ;P

The day was clear and Darhin was trying to find his way through the mountains.
"I've been here before, about three times. I'm not lost. I'm never lost!" he thought to himself. "Maybe if I go this way down.. It must be it!" A path revealed before him. "Finally.. "
He walked down on it, he focused on the distance, where he saw the great plains of Arcadia.

After walking downwards on the path for a few minutes, he discovered a trail of blood. His curiousity took over and he followed the trail. It lead him to a tree with a motionless wolfling laying underneath it.
It  was young, not older than the age of fourteen, he wore some kind of light metal armor, helmetless and without arm protectors. Only the chainmail chestplate was on him

The wolf looked much like a normal Demi-human. His claws were evolved into those that easily could handle a sword. The wolfling let of a sign of life, it coughed and moaned as the sun was burning him. The tree couldn't be his shelter for ever.
Darhin walked towards him, he inspected all the wound it had. Blood flowed from his side and bruises covered his arm.

Darhin made a quick fire of the dry wood he collected and a self made flint and tinder. The flame felt warm, he slowly held his dagger in the flame until it was faintly glowing red from the heat. He held his dagger against the wound, to scorche it and make the bleeding stop. The wolf growled and whined, but his body was too weak to react.
"It's getting dark. Boy, you'll be fine." he said to himself.



The next morning the wolf woke up noticing that his energy returned. His side still hurt though.
"G'morning" Darhin said while he sharpened his blade. The sound killed the wolf, as his' hearing was more developed then Human ones. "Tell me, what's this with you. A wolf, all alone in this abandoned place. Explain. "I.. I was abandoned by my master.. I managed to gather some junk armour. I fought with.. I'm not sure. Beyond this.. I can't remember.." The silence was filled with the sound of Darhin's sharpening. The wolf reached for his side, the rough surface felt weird between his soft fur. "How.. did you heal me?" Darhin said nothing. He stopped sharpening his blade and put it back in his sheath. He equipped the sword on his back.

"That's not important. I'm off now, so you'll be on you're own now. Take care." He turned around and walked away towards the path.
"Wait! " the wolf exclaimed. "Sir, sir! You can't leave me here! Even better, I'm in your dept!"
Darhin stopped and sighed as he looked back at the young wolf. "Alright then, you've hit my soft spot.  Darhin is my name. Yours?" he asked.

"Well, my name is Collin. I've been born as a slave, like many others of my kind." he bowed. "Well then Collin, can you fight?" Collin coughed. "I think I can handle a bow." Darhin laughed about his reply. "Think? Haha! Boy, we're going to have lots of fun."
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: KainCrow on June 06, 2012, 09:03:16 AM
"..You are sure about this? Iskandar?"
"It ain't like I would lie, c'on.. How long have we known each other?"
"2 years, not long enough, but the longest period for the informants I haven't killed yet" Sinkair snorted, glancing at the so-called lastest news from black market, "And Joeny is dead? Good. I never liked him."
"Hey, it ain't like you ever met him!"
"Had to deal enough with his agents, they are *wark*ing idiots," Sinkair retorted and returned to the papers, shaking her head, "Bounty on the assassin.. Feraal? A kitty.. She took a bright stone-.. Oh."

Sinkair stopped in mid-sentence, looking through the reports. The information moved fast among the people who spent enough, especially with sigils and featherfolks.. ..And this one would be quite important. Picking up the information on Joeny's so-called killer (can they even call her killer when a stone killed him?), Sinkair took all the papers and turned, ignoring surprised yelp from behind.

"Huh? Hey! Sinkair! I need those! Which papers are you taking-"
"Don't get involved in this one," Sinkair answered, stopping only at the door, "you will get killed."
"...Get killed, as in I-am-going-to-kill-you, involving those shinies of yours.." The fox-man stood, his voice sly, "or get killed, as in with you and- Ouch!"
"...*sigh*" Sinkair turned, glancing at fox-man who was going down on knees, one of her dagger's scabbard accurately hitting his privates, "get killed, as in the High Council's assassins involved," Sinkair poked at the fox-man's ear which was twitching in pain, "and for the last time.. Fox, when they can, kills birds and eat them.. I am not interested in getting devoured. I am a Rook.. And we don't get eaten easily. Try harder, and I will pay you next time I visit- Vulpe Vermilus."

As Sinkair cheerfully skipped away, Vulpe irritably twitched his tail and leaned against the wall, not bothering to stand up. He was shaking his head, glancing at the copy of the papers Sinkair took.

"...Ah, *wark*.. She hits as hard as usual.. But, the High Council? ..Don't tell me she is working for them again..?" Vulpe rubbed his chin, sighing, "Hurts.. She is not a Rook, she should be a *wark* Carrion Crow.. Those harass even foxes and larger birds of prey to get their kills. For a smaller bird, she sure knows how to get her share.. Feisty.."
"Eh- M- Mister Vermilus? The guests are here-"
"Tell them to wait," Vulpe snapped, glaring at the poor employee, "what's your name?"
"C-Cardin, mister!"
"Well, Cardin.." Vulpe gave a sly look, standing up and beginning to hide all his throwing daggers in his person, "I am going to be AWOL (absent without leave), you will not report this to anyone until 3 hours later!"
"What? W-wait, sir!!"

Dashing out of the Treasure and Bounty Hunter Centre building, Vulpe smirked- he enjoyed running off from his duty time to time (despite the fact that he was in charge of the region's branches in Hellios), not to mention his not-so-secret, although most think it's just act, crush on Sinkair. It wouldn't do for his crush to die in accident, right?
With another glance at his papers, Vulpe ran towards the South-west gate of the city- knowing Sinkair, she would be heading towards the city Iskandar to get more information on that feline assassin's movement, not at all bothered by possible dangers, not to mention that city would have enough mages to create teleportation sigils. Treasure and Bounty Hunters lived dangerously- and there always are mages who would be willing to remain behind to get more money for creating sigils in the middle of siege.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: MegaFun on June 06, 2012, 02:59:16 PM
It wasn't until Lyria reminded him of Arcadia's possession of the Ark of Fire when Petyr began to seriously consider the possibility of escaping to Hellios.

It was a thought which had always existed in his mind, buried at the very depths of his consciousness only to surface when something reignited his hatred of this nation, like moths attracted to light. He may have been born on Arcadian soil with Arcadian blood, but the only thing the Empire ever gave to him was despair, and nothing else. The only things that could have given him happiness were forcibly taken away from him. The Empire killed his family twelve years ago and it pained him to think that the faces of his true parents had considerably faded in his memory. Since he was so little back then, he did not quite know why they were taken away from him, but they probably did something against the Empire's interests. They could possibly have tried to prevent another Great War and spoke against the utterly mad search for the Arks. Or they did something else that was contrary to the Empire's agenda. Either way, they must have done something of the sort, because these were the kinds of things that got people killed... at his hands, of course. At the order of the Empire. It was what they used to say. "He did this, kill his children... she did that, burn her mansion... he did that, bring me his head..." was all he used to hear, sounds of murder which used to resonate all over his mind, like ripples of water in a pond, until it overpowered his senses, and the demon told him to submit.

"Darn it, Petyr, get over yourself," he thought to himself. The demon was hungry, and this made him more aggressive both in thoughts and in behavior. It was something which had constantly irritated and haunted him throughout his life, especially since he fled from the clutches of the Empire; the instant he stopped murdering people, he realized truly how much the demon thirsted for blood and the rush some people experience when being Death itself. It has worried his mother and father, Lyria and Fernis, for sure. The last time the demon overpowered him, perhaps a little under a year ago, he lost himself... and he imagined he had almost lost Fernis. Fortunately, none of that happened; if it did, he would most likely be out in the wild again as a fugitive of the Empire. From that day on, he resolved to conquer the devil; the evil Arcadia had implanted within him, so that such things will never occur.

Petyr's mind jumped back to reality when he heard a faint rustle in the bushes. The Sun was going down and the deer only hunts in daylight, so he'd better move quickly. He began to approach the source of the sound, walking very carefully so as to not crush any dry leaves or snap any fallen twigs on the floor of the woods. He listened more carefully, opening his ears to the quietest hums in the forest and noticed a sound of leaves being torn away from their branches. Its rhythm was irregular, but he was sure that his prey was having its last meal.

As he tiptoed over to several meters away from a small stream, he saw it. The white-horned stag, joyfully eating the leaves from a patch of shrubs, unaware of the peril that awaited it. Petyr crept closer towards the creature, hiding within the approaching darkness of the evening and shadows of the trees, just like the panther. Yes, panther... it was one of his many nicknames back in the capital, although his employers preferred the term "housecat" or "rat-chaser" or "pest-hunter" and other relatively vile nicknames. When he reached throwing distance, he quietly retrieved his daggers and swiftly launched them off his fingers towards the unsuspecting deer. The creature wheezed as the two knives penetrated its hide, but in its wounded state it immediately attempted to gallop away into safety. Petyr hissed in irritation and a small green sigil lighted up at the back of his left hand as he conjured a strong gust of wind in the deer’s direction in an attempt to halt its escape. As soon as the gust dissipated, Petyr pounced onto his prey like a hungry panther and ended its misery with a slash to the throat.

---

“This tastes so good,” Fernis exclaimed unintelligibly with a full mouth as he chewed on the deer, sitting down at the front pavilion with Petyr at his side. He was five years older than Petyr, a broad-shouldered man who, although not particularly large, had a strong and sturdy build after many years of smithing, hunting and being part of the village watch. The years of working in the smithery combined with Ashval’s scorching summers had darkened his skin slightly and he had eyes that matched his sister’s, though his hair was a slightly darker brown than Lyria’s blonde. He and Lyria were fairly well-educated despite their humble upbringing, which made them luckier than many of Lyria’s age who were illiterate.

“I heard there’s been a lot of work,” Petyr said. “You’ve been coming home late.”

Fernis nodded. “Lots of mercenaries and treasure hunters buying swords and armor from us lately. It’s strange that the Empire even needs sellswords, seeing that they already have the Ark of Fire. I passed by the tavern today and apparently the Lord General reduced a bunch of Hellios troops to ashes with it. As for the treasure hunters, they are probably scattered across this half of the continent looking for the other Ark. After all, the Empire might just reward them handsomely for their efforts.”

“Idiots. Not many can handle the power of the Arks... I’m not quite sure what the other Ark is or what it does, but it probably won’t let some common treasure hunter touch it without ripping him to a thousand pieces,” Petyr groaned. “I just hope the fighting doesn’t move further south. Ashval is far too close to the border already and I don’t want it to become a battlezone.”

“Indeed. The men here are already feeling the terror and doubling up the defenses around the coast. The village watch requires me more than they ever have, and I hear they’re even encouraging some of our men to fight as mercenaries against the Hellios. I don’t know if it’s patriotism or if they just want to end the war. I really just want to end the war,” Fernis sighed. “The Empire might not know this, but it’s really the small commoners who suffer from all this bloodshed.”

“You mustn’t leave Ashval, brother. Lyria, father and mother needs you. The village needs you,” Petyr said. The question which he had buried at the back of his mind began to surface towards the tip of his tongue, and when he finally couldn’t hold it in anymore, he blurted it out.

“I wonder if there’s a way to cross over to Hellios.”

Fernis stopped and fixed his gaze on Petyr with a frown that questioned his sanity. “Surely you jest. Anyone who steps foot on the sands of Hellios is likely to be greeted by a storm of arrows. You are no exception, Petyr. No matter how fast you are, they will hunt any Arcadian down. The Imperial ships have fared better now that they have golems, but you can’t just sneak into any Imperial ship.”

Petyr moved closer to Fernis and looked straight into his eyes. “Brother, please,” he paused. “You know how much I hate this nation. Ashval, this little dot on the bloody map is just about my favorite place in this goddamned Empire.”

“Petyr, what is it that you want? Everyone knows how much you loathe Arcadia, but what are you going to do about it? You’re my little brother now, and I want you to know that revenge won’t get you anywhere,” Fernis growled.

“I know!” Petyr snarled, “But I have questions, and questions require answers. Answers I have to tear out of the Imperials’ throats if I have to. I can’t simply do this from here. They are still looking for me. They have even looked here. I don’t want to further jeopardize any of-.”

“Petyr,” Fernis interrupted. “This is war. Everyone is jeopardized... if you are really still considering this, I cannot help you. I don’t support it at all, but in the end I cannot stop you either,” he paused, hesitated for a moment, and whispered, “If you are truly so persistent, I will take you to Kailen. The port town, just a little bit to the west. But that’s as far as I go. You have to either find your own way, or forget about it and come back.”

Petyr’s face lighted up with the news. All the Greyfangs have always been opposed to his reckless idea of venturing into enemy territory, but none harbored personal hatred for the demi-humans. As Fernis said, all commoners want is for this needless conflict to end.

“Thanks, Fernis. I knew I could always count on you.”
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Metal Chocobo on June 06, 2012, 05:31:45 PM
The golems helped to bring the other ships ashore as Isaac stepped off onto the sand. The Merfolk had responded strangely to the golems jumping into the water. The fight should have been to their advantage but they had fled all the same. Being caught between the Merfolk and the town's defenses could prove difficult, but the golems beneath the water would not surface for another few hours. The Merfolk would be at a disadvantage if the arrived before then and would be easier to repel after.

The front lines of golems began to march toward the city at an unspoken command and the rest began to fall in line behind them, raising their arms to point toward the town.

"Fire."

Burst of light flew from the hands of the golems, flying towards the town. At this range they would do little damage but the intention was fear, and to signal the other Imperial troops, wherever they were. Hopefully, Cilia was long gone by now.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Cilia folded her wings in as she landed in the street. She had assumed the form of one of the Featherfolk, an older woman with a snobbish, icy cold glare. Certainly the type to travel so far for a history book.
As she walked down the street in search of the store, Cilia was struck by the number of people still wandering the streets. The boats would not land for a few more hours, but surely they must have known. The advancing forces were not exactly being quiet. She was torn away from her thoughts as she saw the sign for the bookstore.

Inside, Cilia had to maneuver between untidy stacks of books to reach the counter where an older man watched her with feline eyes. His beard had grown long, and the tufts of hair form his cat-like ears extended so far that his head appeared T-shaped.

"What can I do for you?" The bookstore owner's voice purred.

"I am searching for a book that I have heard you own. A text on the Ark of Infinity."

"Books on that topic have been selling quite quickly of late, I suspect the tome you seek has already been bought."

"The book I seek is rather special. Written in a cipher not many people can still read, most who can are Arcadian. Such a book is harder to sell."

"Ahh," the owner responded, reaching into a stack by the counter, "You mean the Claywright journal. I had begun to expect I was stuck with it. Few people can read the scribbles and as it records a time after the events of the Ark, few people care to try."
The man placed a leather bound journal on the counter and Cilia quickly flicked between the pages. There were some legible ones added to the beginning listing the history of the book and guessing at its contents but afterwards there were only runes and symbols scattered across pages. She nodded her satisfaction and placed a small bag of gold on the counter.
The old man's brow raised in suspicion as he spirited the purse away behind the counter, "Why do you seek this book? There are others on the Ark that could tell you of its powers, and you don't strike me as the type to go looking for it." He asked.

"It is from after the Ark was used" Cilia explained, "I can see how it changed the world, the side effects of its use but more importantly, it has a better chance of telling me where the Order hid the pieces of the Ark."

Screams and explosions from outside. Cilia thanked the owner quickly and ran out, opening her wings and taking flight away form the approaching army. She had been too slow and the boats too fast. She would wait out the conflict away from the fight until she was called back.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Ultima on June 06, 2012, 06:03:37 PM
Caius stepped through the teleportation sigil to the sight of a towering pillar of smoke rising from the far side of Iskandar.

“The *Bleep* have all ready started attacking!” a wolf beside Caius growled. His name was Mabozza, one of Caius’ top lieutenants, “Let’s go!” he roared.

“Hold!!” Caius bellowed so loudly that the valley resonated with the sound of his howl. “This is a ploy! Their real attack has yet to begin! Move in slowly to the village and find likely choke points! Guard them well but don’t throw your lives away, Thenna won’t be far behind us! Move out!”

Caius and his troupe began marching into Iskandar as an unusually large member of the Featherfolk disappeared into the night.

Feraal had begun heading south with all speed since a bounty had been placed on her head for Joeny’s murder. How she could have been so careless as to have missed one of the idiot’s henchmen was causing her a good deal of concern.

She stopped suddenly, noticing light in the distance. Lightly and deftly, she scrambled up to the highest branches of a nearby oak tree. Even in the darkness, she recognised the town in the distance; Ashval. It was a quaint little town with little history of crime, somewhere she probably would have grown up if she were well-adjusted. She just needed to steal enough food for the journey across the Trench. She knew that makeshift rafts littered the coastline, so there would be no need to steal a boat.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: rsslayersr on June 07, 2012, 01:28:30 PM
She easily glided through the mountain winds. The Tome taught her interesting information about this 'Tincediara' element. 'The Metal of Gods', it was named by the ancients after the war. The detail of its properties were written in great detail, but no location was given away of this rare metal. Alice started to decent little by little. Her clan was in eye's reach. All the houses were symmetrically placed, the transition to the white temple was ominously perfect. "Probably the last safe haven I will see for long time." she thought to herself.

The ground lifted some sand particles in the air as she landed, the center of town was busy again. The news of her departure has spread. She walked up to a nearby wall and leaned into it. She could feel the heat leaving her body. "Midday and already broken." She took a deep breath of air. "How long has it been?" The thought of her warm bed jumped into her head. The streets were giving of a sound of organized chaos.

"Alice!". The young Mreast, Tobias, waved. She looked at his hazel coloured eyes and short brown hair.
"It took you long enough." he said.

"Well, what do you think 'business' means? If more, The Five would be grateful of me, spicing up my knowledge." she grinned. Tobias could easily be irritated by saying the right words.

"Again with your attitude. Alice, the stunt you pulled out there was daring, maybe even dangerous."
"So? it worked, didn't it?"

"With you, it always works, doesn't it?" Tobias smiled a little. "Style is everything. With you.. Well, let's say you're not missing any."
"I wished I could say the same, you careless hedgehog." They both began to laugh.
"Haha! Always the nice one, aren't you?" Tobias said. "Hedgehog? Couldn't you think of anything better?"
Alice cleared her throat and turned the conversation around. "Look, I'm already tired. Do we have anything else we're needed for?" Tobias faintly shook his head with an unnoticeable smile. "You're done for the day. If you're heading home, walk through the west resident district, I don't want you trampled, do I?"

Alice nodded. "Good luck!". She started to head home.

The residence streets were quiet. Kids were playing with their marbles and stones. "Alice?" She heard a familiar voice. Celine came running. "You again?" Alice said with a smile. She lifted the little Celine in the air and placed her on top of her shoulders. She stretched her wings to simulate a small fight. "Sis!'" Celine shouted. A young girl waved. "You alright there?" she shouted from the distance. Alice walked towards the sister. "Sure!" Celine replied.
"Ah, Erica, how have you been? Haven't seen you in a while." Alice placed Celine back on the ground.
"Could've been better. I heard you were leaving here?"

"Just a minor inconvenience, war is coming."
"We heard, but the battleground is way up north, we're safe here. No human can pass through without wings, haha!" Erica giggled. The sixteen year old Dove had a twinkle of innocence in her eyes. The Ark went through Alice her mind, the destruction will surely reach this place. War, for what?

Alice looked closely into her light coloured green eyes. An uneasy feeling went through her spine. "Shouldn't you be working by the Herbal shops with your mother now? The folks are busy with my leave, I thought you would've been of help there."
"I figured I would only be in the way. Mom has her own tempo, remember?"
"She surely is a multitasker." Alice rubbed the back of her head and smiled.

"I'm heading home, take care of your sister. Wish me luck!" Alice turned around. She heard the goodbyes of both sisters. From here she could easily see all the hunters and carpenters flying all over the place. Most hunters gathered enough food for this week, a storm recently hit the village, so the woodworkers were busy repairing it all.

"Finally, home!" She opened the wooden door en went inside. She ignored the living room and went straight upstairs. She turned left, into her study. A pile of old books were on her willow desk. She unequipped her weapons and armour, she picked up a robe from the bed that was placed next to here. She liked reading, so she made her bedroom also her study. She removed her ring and let her hair hang loose. With a match, she re-lit the candle on her desk. She opened her book on the page where she last left off. Nothing like a bed story before sleeping.



The next morning arrived, Alice was woken up by the knocking on her door. She rubbed the sleep out of her eyes. "Alice, wake up!". She already sighed about Tobias being pesky this hour. "Yeah, yeah! Just let me gear up for a second!"
She let her robe slide of her body and put on her undergarment. A few seconds later she was fully equipped with her armour and Bow. She restocked her arrow supply and brought a couple of space quivers. Tobias was still knocking, the sounds annoyed her. She opened the door. "Done?" she slightly hissed.
"You look freshened up, the town is ready for your goodbyes."
Alice yawned. "Fine, fine. Just show me the way, please."

"How are we doing this, the journey I mean." Alice asked interested.
"It's a seven day trip, after we're out of the hills, it's just a straight road."

She noticed something in his reply. "We?"
"Wasn't it obvious? Of course I'm going too, we can't let you go alone, can we?"
"Is anybody else going?"
"I don't think so. That probably would be just heavy load, we'll be fine on our own."

Alice laughed.

"Well, we're here." Tobias said.

The town was gathered to send their good lucks to the two. They bundled sacks with food and flasks with water. It was just enough, so the weight wasn't terribly high. They villagers weren't cheering, who would if you send people to war.
The two made sure they were packed and ascended into the sky. The sky was clear of clouds, a glide maneuver would be best to make distance. From the ground, the young Erica looked at the two tiny dots that went northwards.

The night fell and everyone went to their homes again, except for her. The girl flapped her wings and went to the sky. The moon enlightened her wings as she went to the same path as Alice and Tobias.

OoC: Kainy, Erica's introduced. There was a joke on my last part. Tobias' 'Adamant' sword, Adamant is NOT his nature. >.<
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Dragon Lord on June 07, 2012, 03:57:28 PM
Edward stood on the foredeck of the Bilisknir, the flagship of the Imperial Navy. Golems stood on guard across the deck in case of attack but the Merfolk seemed to be distracted by the first wave of Imperial Ships which had already begun its attack on Iskander. Even from this distance Edward could see the great plume of smoke rising from the coast.

“It’s started then?” a voice behind him said.

Edward turned to see General Astal walking towards him. He wore similar armour to Edwards, but with pale blue coloured plate armour and a white cape. A sword hung at his side with a griffon’s head at the hilt.

“It would seem so,” Edward replied, turning to look back at the horizon. “Verde’s already gone ahead. He said he didn’t want to miss the action.”

“Do you know why he hates the Hellios so much?” General Astal asked.

“No,” Edward sighed. “He just seems to enjoy killing them. I guess they don’t call him the butcher for nothing.”

“These Golems are an interesting sight,” Astal remarked. “Ah, for the good old days when we fought wars with steel instead of Arks and Golems and ancient magic. Battles were more honourable back then.”

“I’m tired, Bart,” Edward said to his friend. “I used to love being a soldier, but now…”

“I know old friend,” Astal replied. “We aren't really soldiers anymore, we're Generals. We're the ones who have to make the hard decisions and live with the consequences. But all we can do is carry-out our duty. If the Emperor wants to use these magical weapons then so be it.”

The boat shook from a sudden impact and both Generals had to grab the rail to stay on their feet. One of the look-outs from above started shouting as Merfolk leapt from the ocean onto the deck. Edward and Astal drew their swords and jumped down to face their attackers. The first six Merfolk died before they even knew what was happening. Edward’s sword Lohengrim and Astal’s Averlock flashed in the sunlight, cutting through their enemies like a knife through butter.

By this point, the Golems had begun to smash their way through the attackers while others jumped into the ocean to protect the ship itself. The Merfolk were no match for the giant automatons and by the time the soldiers started to appear from the lower decks most of the enemy had been killed or driven overboard. A few moments later only four Merfolk remained on board, facing up against the two Generals. Edward’s movements belied his huge frame as he moved almost like a dancer, his sword an extension of himself. His two opponents were barely able to hold their own as Edward swung his weapon in unpredictable patterns, systematically breaking their defence. At last, he swung the blade in a wide ark arc and cut them both down with a single stroke. Astal’s style relied more on defence. He allowed to two Merfolk to attack him until an opening appeared and he was able to kill one with three swift strikes and force the other overboard with another two.

Both men stood panting in the sunlight, smiling at one another.

“Now that was a good fight,” Edward laughed.

“Why didn’t you use the Ark?” Astal asked as he sat down on the stairs leading down to the deck.

“We’re on a boat you lunatic,” Edward said, sitting beside them. “Fire and boats rarely mix well.”

Both men continued laughing as Senna stepped up from below.

“Are you alright, my Lord?” she asked.

“Perfectly fine,” Edward assured her. “What happened to you?”

“A couple of Merfolk managed to break through the hull, I stayed below to deal with them and to cover the men repairing the breach.”

“Fair enough,” Edward said. “I don’t think I would have enjoyed swimming to Iskander.”

“My Lord!” one of the sailors shouted. “We’ll reach land in less than an hour!”

“Alright,” Edward said, his smile vanishing.



“The battles started,” Leon said. The others all turned to look at him briefly before picking themselves off the ground and gathering their gear. “We need to move quickly. Don’t stop moving unless you have to defend yourself.”

The group raced down the hill towards the village, each of them ready for a fight.



OoC: Sorry about the lack of posts, I’ve got job application stuff to do. I’m still keeping an eye on things.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: MegaFun on June 07, 2012, 04:03:27 PM
It has been two days since Petyr made up his mind.

The Sun had barely emerged from the horizon and the sky was still colored in the dark blue of twilight. The tranquil music of waves greeted mornings in Ashval, and around this time fishermen had begun to  work, preparing themselves for their fresh catches of the day.

Petyr had just dressed himself in his day attire when Lyria came up to his room. She would usually only be up when the Sun floats high in the sky, so this was an unusual sight. Fernis had already gotten down by the breakfast table, preparing for his morning shift at the smithery.

“Petyr,” Lyria muttered, still looking groggy from being up at such an ungodly hour. “I overheard your conversation with Fernis two nights ago... are you leaving us?”

Petyr nodded. "Lyria, I'm sorry to leave you like this. But there is something that must be done."

"What did mother and father say?"

"I spoke to them last night..." Petyr sighed. "Needless to say they tried to keep me from going. But they let me anyway. Fernis did too."

Lyria frowned in disappointment and sighed. She held out her hand and revealed something wrapped in a white cloth. Petyr gave her a curious look and stepped forward, unwrapping the bundle of cloth until he found a shortbow and a sliver of arrows.

"Fernis taught me how to make this. We made this for your birthday, but since you're leaving and I don't know if you'll ever be back..." Lyria began to hold back tears. "I might as well give it to you. Figured you needed something more effective than your throwing knives... I know it’s harder to carry, but trust me. ‘Death loves bows’."

Petyr chuckled at Lyria’s impersonation of him. "My birthday? What birthday? I don't even know the day I was born."

"No, but we do know the day you came here. That, for us, is your birthday."

Petyr smiled and retrieved the bow and arrows from Lyria's hands. Fernis had taught him how to hunt with a bow before and he would occasionally hunt with Lyria's bow, but he wasn't particularly accustomed to it. When he did use it, however, he was fairly decent at it so he figured he could get better at it. After all, it is pretty hard to hunt with throwing knives. You can’t really kill your targets in one shot. They’re more practical with slow targets, like people, and they’re more assassin-like, but arrows seem to be the better option.

“Getting ready to go?” Fernis emerged from the hallway, still munching on a half-eaten chicken.

Petyr nodded. “Fernis, Lyria... thank you for these past two years. I don’t know if I’ll ever come back, but I’ll be sure to visit when I have the chance. I don’t know what will happen when I cross the Trench. Maybe I’ll have to hide. Maybe I’ll become an enemy of Arcadia and its people. Or maybe I’ll be dead,” he laughed. “I want you two to stay alive. The war is about to get worse... I can feel it. Fernis, I trust you with Ashval.”

“You say that like you own this village,” Fernis laughed.

“THIEF, THIEF!!”

The peace was shattered with shouts of panic from outside. Petyr and Fernis rushed to the window and witnessed something--it appeared to be a person, but there was something off about him--running away at an unbelievable speed, followed by a poor old man who wanted whatever that was stolen back. While Fernis stood confused at the situation, Petyr had already made his way out of the stairs and dashed out of the house towards the fleeing thief. As he accelerated his pace towards the culprit, he began to make out his features and saw who appeared to be a girl--a young demi-human girl. Petyr had not seen many demi-humans in his life; he had encountered some during his hunts, many of them fleeing from the Arcadian army and many of them already dead with some gruesome wound somewhere on their body. But he was sure the thief was a demi-human. She looked less animalistic and had more pronounced human features than any of the other demi-humans he had ever seen, but the distinct shape of her ears and the manner in which she ran reminded him of a feline beast.

What’s a demi-human doing here? Escaping to Hellios?” Petyr thought.

As the thought crossed his mind, a small object darted past him only several inches from his face. He looked back and found the old man suddenly stopped in his tracks and collapsed on the ground with convulsions. What an aggressive thief.

“Hey, you won’t get away with this!” Petyr shouted. Green glyphs at the back of his palms and one at the back of his neck lighted up as he conjured a mild wind barrier, in case she tried to throw anything that might just end his life as it just did to the old man. The demi-girl looked back at Petyr, gave him a death gaze and continued running even faster than before. She was heading towards the coastline, which was lined with bamboo rafts and fishermen’s boats. Petyr quickly retrieved a clear vial from his pocket and a throwing knife, applying only two small drops of the unknown substance on the blade. When they came to a wooden fence which separated the village from the coast, the demi-girl scaled the fence, bow drawn, and shot an arrow at Petyr which was deflected by a burst of gust from his palms. The demi-girl sneered and jumped across, followed by Petyr who lifted himself with a gust downwards and front-flipped to the other side of the fence, landing smoothly on the soft white sand. The girl headed towards one of the rafts littered around the coastline with her sack of stolen goods and turned around to loose a flurry of darts in Petyr’s direction, but he dashed aside and shouted as he summoned a more violent spiral of gust from his palms to stop the little darts in their path. They ran, and ran, until they finally came waist-deep into the ocean, from which the girl climbed onto a rock and made a graceful leap onto one of the rafts floating several meters into the ocean and slashed the rope that held it onto the shore. Petyr attempted to follow suit, but the girl held out a glistening emerald and blasted him fifty feet into the air with a sudden burst of explosive gale. She watched as Petyr plummeted into the water with a great splash.

“Persistent *Bleep*,” the girl murmured. She grabbed the paddle that lay on the raft and looked around her for a moment for any signs of her pursuer, ready to bash him into a bloody pulp if he were to ever set foot on the raft, although that would have been unlikely. The water’s tension would have shattered some of his bones in a fall from that height; at worst, it would have destroyed his ribs and lungs. He would suffocate to death either way. Feeling slightly relieved, the girl placed her luggage down and began to empty it. There were some fruits, plenty of bread to last a few days and even a few pieces of cooked meat. Definitely enough to last her the journey.

As the girl began to sit down, a flying dagger brushed past her calves and made a cut under the back of left knee. She cringed and dropped onto her knees; thankfully, it was not a serious wound. In fact, it was more like a scratch; nothing she couldn’t handle. The water splashed next to her raft and the young man who pursued her emerged from the surface, climbing onto the raft with his hands. The girl backed away and reflexively reached for a weapon, but her arms felt numb and soon she discovered that she was unable to move them.

“Don’t move. I’m not your enemy,” Petyr said, coughing and hacking from the water in his throat. He managed to climb onto the drifting raft and approached the demi-human girl. By this time she found that both her arms and legs were too numb to move and all she could do was sit down. Petyr whipped his dagger out and the next moment it was already held against her throat.

“What’s your... name?” Petyr asked, panting from his fatigue.

The girl remained calm and silent. She looked him straight in the eye, and said, “I’m not going to tell my name to an Arcadian. Do you take me for a fool? How did you survive? No one has the energy to swim and climb a damned raft after a fall from that height.”

“You’re right, that blow did hurt,” Petyr muttered, drawing the dagger away from the girl. He rolled up his sleeves, revealing a  large bruise on his left forearm. “But one does not simply kill a servant of Death.”

The girl was surprised by his reply, but she remained silent. She tried to move her limbs again but her attempts were futile. “Sleeperweed,” she mumbled.

“Don’t worry, I only used about three drops. It’s only enough to paralyze your arms and legs for two to three hours, but you see, I had to do it while floating on the water. Be glad I didn’t accidentally wash the blade with the entire vial. You wouldn’t be breathing right now if that happened.”

“What do you want?” she snapped. “I was headed for Hellios. A common thief-catcher wouldn’t follow me this far and an assassin would have killed me without a second thought, if I were you. At least, any skilled assassin I know would do it. Are you so desperate to meet death that you are willing to follow me to Hellios shores? Who are you?”

Petyr laughed. “Don’t flatter yourself. And I will not answer that question until you do so,” he said. The girl hissed under her breath and looked away.

“I only want to go to Hellios. You will take me there. You seem to be a thief, a spy, a ranger, an assassin, whatever. I just want to escape that rotten hell called Arcadia.”

The demi-human girl sneered. “Do you think you can buy me with such false hatred of one’s own nation?”

“I don’t expect you to. But I’m sure you can tell if you look into my soul,” Petyr said sternly, looking at the girl straight into her eye. Her expression changed; she seemed surprised at his behavior. “How long until Hellios, my fellow assassin, spy, whatever?”

“Few hours, few days, few weeks, few months,” the girl hissed. “It matters not. You will die as soon as the Sleeperweed wears off, or if I don’t feel like it, they’ll collect your head at the shore.”

“That’s why you will take me as prisoner,” Petyr chuckled. “Let’s make a deal. We both go to Hellios. You return safe to your homeland, I’ll be away from Arcadia. You have the privilege of tying me up and making me a prisoner as soon as we reach the shore. Otherwise I’d be dead.”

“What’s in it for me?” she asked. “That’s right, nothing.”

“If you treat me well, you will gain an ally against Arcadia. I will do whatever it takes to end the war, even if it means crushing the Empire.”

“You do know the people of Hellios have grown to hate humans? Do you have a deathwish or are you simply extremely insane?” she frowned.

“I would like to think so,” he chuckled. “But you can test my loyalty however you want. Maybe kill your prisoners of war? I don’t know, your choice. Rest assured that as soon as I can stand with my own two feet in your country, you will no longer have anything to do with me and I with you. Do you understand me?”

The girl remained quiet, still looking away from Petyr. He couldn’t really tell what she was thinking, but he hoped that he was persuasive enough for her to let him into Hellios. He had gotten this far; he could not go back to Ashval at this point, and she was a dangerous girl. She could kill him if she wanted to, especially with the power she used to launch him into the skies. So all he could do was try his best to survive and place his trust in her. For now.

“Whatever you want, human,” the girl finally replied, although it could be considered a frighteningly ambiguous one. Nevertheless, this satisfied Petyr. He smiled, picked up the wooden paddle and began to row towards the south.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Ultima on June 07, 2012, 08:23:44 PM
Caius strode through the main street of Iskandar, apparently oblivious to the magic, fire and rubble surrounding him. Was this how the Arcadians attacked now, relying on defeating the enemy before landing? This wasn’t the Vanheim that he recalled fighting. Someone else was pulling the strings and that meant drastic action was needed. “Remain here!” he growled at his troupe before sprinting towards the beach.

The rain of fire increased in intensity as he moved through the west side of the village. He wasn’t entirely sure that his plan was going to work but it was better than nothing. It wasn’t long before the rubble of Iskandar transformed into sand and pebbles. He had reached the beach. The three golems attacking the village were incredibly visible which meant any interruption in their assault would be immediately noticed by the Arcadians.

With a feral roar, Caius grabbed the first golem by the throat and spun it in several furiously fast circles, knocking it into its comrades and causing them to stumble. Reacting to this new presence, they took up arms and began to fight back.

The golems were strong and, apparently, nigh impervious to pain, but these models at least were incredibly slow and easy to dodge attacks from. Caius continuously raked and carved pieces from their bodies until all three lay dead. Breathing heavily, he drew his axe, summoned a good amount of energy and blasted it into the sky above his head as a column of light. Caius’ platoon knew this sign; the enemy are about to react be ready.

He whirled around and sprinted back into the village.

-------------------------------------------------------------------

The sleeping weed had been a little more effective on Feraal than the Arcadian had originally thought. It had been four hours and she still couldn’t move a muscle. Even her mouth had gone to sleep. Nevertheless, this Arcadian paddled onwards. He had no idea the danger that he was putting himself in. He was certainly more attractive than some of the clients Feraal had been forced to ‘entertain’ by Joeny.

A few more minutes passed and Feraal drifted off into a sleep.

She opened her eyes later to find day breaking. How long had she been asleep? How close were they to Hellios? Realising that she had full control over her muscles again, Feraal took advantage of her comrade’s nonchalance to knock him out with a swift blow to the temple. This was for his good as much as it was hers. There was no telling how many patrols the Merfolk had in this time of war.

Suddenly, a scaled blue face burst from the surface of the water and aimed a spear at Feraal’s face. “Cat, why do you bring an Arcadian onto Hellios soil?”

“He is a prisoner,” she said simply, readying her darts just in case.

“No Arcadian is to cross onto Hellios soil under any circumstances by order of the council,” he continued, “Kill him or die with him.”

Needing no more provocation, Feraal unloaded a dart into the neck of the Merman. He was silently drifting along the coastal tides within seconds. The council were always a bunch of pretentious dictators, bickering over who owned what unless they were fighting Arcadia.

Another hour passed. Feraal had no more contact with the Merfolk and the pair reached dry land safely. She then began the laborious task of moving everything she, and her companion, owned far enough inland so as not to be noticed. He had packed well for this trip indicating he had planned this for a long time. The midday sun had begun to rise over the mountains to the east when the man finally awoke beside a roaring fire and cooking meats. “Welcome back. You may have noticed a change of scenery.”

OoC: Wow... that was one long and impressive post Mega.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: jedakiller on June 07, 2012, 09:29:18 PM
"Where are we heading for?" Collin asked. "To be honest? Not sure." Darhin chuckled. He looked up at the sky. The sun was going down. "A beauty. It's getting late, my Mule."
"Yes, she is.. Wait, what did you call me!" Collin tried to defend himself, Darhin laughed at his attempts.
"Walking further would be of no avail. We're better of setting a camp, get up early. A man needs it's rest too, you know.". Darhin dropped the bag of supplies he was carrying. Life was hard to find. The trip through the plains had exhausted both, especially the last days.
After all this time, they had finally reached solid fertile grounds.

"Anything else?" Collin asked. He had gathered enough dry wood to keep the fire running for the night. Darhin was messing with his sparkstones, it was small after all its uses. The wood started to glow and flames eventually began to emerge. "Sleep..."  They both crawled up next to the warm fire and hoped the trees would keep them safe.

The next morning Collin woke up, tied up to a tree.

"Morning sunshine, did you sleep well?" Darhin was struggling with the ropes that held his arms locked.

"Why are we tied to a tree!" Collin exclaimed. His arms were placed uncomfortably, the tree pushed against his wound.

Darhin kept quiet, a group of bandits walked towards them.

"All awake I see." a thug  said. he looked at Darhin's sword. "Nice stabber you've got there, I bet that fortune's going to bring me some fine gold.". The bandit spat as he spoke.

"I've told you before, it's not a good idea." Darhin said with a calm voice, he smirked a bit.
His hands were free again. These kids really can't tie a knot. "Armatures." he thought.

"I don't wanna die, I don't wanna die!" Collin was intimidated by this already unfortunate scenario.

"Now it's just playing the waiting game" Darhin prepared himself for an opening.

Three bandits before him, all wearing swords. Easy.
"Up." Collin whispered.
Collin looked at the backup the outlaws brought, an archer.
"I see, good for you.." Darhin whispered with a smile.

"What should we do with them? Best we kill them now." one bandit whispered against the others.

"Hey you there! Aren't you those boys who stole their mums undergarment?" Darhin shouted.
"What are you doing!" Collin slightly panicked. A thug went towards to and buried his fist into his face.
"Good.".
Darhin stood up, his hand untied and forced himself to hit the bandit back. The hit made blood appear.  He quickly grabbed him from behind and used him as a shield for the archer. The arrow that was aimed for him, went in the shield, as planned. He jumped away, into the place where his weapons were placed. The other two finally drew their blades. Darhin choose the quickest, his dagger.
.

Its handle was wrapped in brown leather, grip was important for such instruments.

The first bandit lashed out. To his shock, the fine swordsman blocked his blow and pushed until the bandit forgotten to keep his guard. Darhin kicked him in the stomach.
The tables were turned, but his friend quickly did the same. Darhin ducked and turned his dagger around, now holding it in a fancy assassin like way.
He ran towards the confused bandit, kicked him to the ground and cut is throat.
The archer reloaded and started to aim.  "Collin!" Darhin shouted and he threw his dagger to the cub, he freed himself instantly.

Woods have trees, trees mean cover. Darhin had the luck of hiding, but the arched had already chosen his new target, Collin. "Hide, you fool!" He ran, escaping from the first arrow. The archer's position wasn't ideal anymore and he slowly climbed down.

Tension raised, coming out of cover could mean a quick death. An idea came to Darhin. He started thinking, thinking hard. "N..Nox Omnius!" went through his head. His sword started shining, its bright colour soon caught the archer's eyes. At reflex, he shot of his arrow. Darhin started running towards him, but before reaching the last fiend, Collin already stabbed him in the back. The archer fell to his knees. The wolf kicked him down, letting of a soft growl.

Darhin picked up his sword, which was now starting to faint. The last living bandit tried to crawl his way to safety, it didn't work. Darhin already stood next to him. A quick strike from his blade did the job, his spine was cut out. "My dagger, please."
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Metal Chocobo on June 08, 2012, 03:51:50 PM
Isaac stood over the three broken golems. Their chests had been scratched so deep that their cores were visible. Reaching down into the gash, Isaac placed a finger on the fractured core. The souls of the golems responded and flew to his hand and up his arm.
Isaac stepped away and flexed his fingers, removing the souls always left a peculiar tingling sensation, but the souls took too long to cast for him to be able to just abandon them. The bodies could be repaired, but the middle of a battle was a less than ideal place to attempt it. It wasn't like the now inanimate piles of stone were going to go anywhere now.

Isaac turned and headed back toward the beach puzzling over improving the design. Despite their size, bears were clearly faster than golems, speed meant a lot less against something smaller, but it was weakness that needed tending too. Iron would be harder to break and possibly lighter than the massive slabs of granite he used now, but he was no smith. Volcanic glass would be better; not as sturdy, but certainly lighter and the colour would make them next to invisible during night raids, not to mention he could work with that more easily.

As his feet touched sand, Isaac looked up to see the rest of the golems marching out of the water, along with the rest of the men from the boats. General Vanheim was among them, along with the Ark of Fire. Magical artifacts tended to react to each other. Isaac could sense the Ark through the golems, they seemed to acknowledge it almost as another living presence. Isaac found it unnerving.

If the Ark of Fire was with them then Iskandar would fall. They just needed to break through the enemy lines. A line of five golems strode forward, then began to walk faster, moving into a jog and finally barreling forward in a charge.

As the men formed their ranks and marched into the battle, the Generals approached the Golemancer.

"Mister Claywright, how goes the battle? Has there been any sign of General Verde?" Asked General Vanheim.

"General Vanheim, General Astal," Isaac responded, nodding respectfully, "The golems have broken the walls of the city, so far the only attack of any real ferocity was a very big bear striking down three of my golems. As to General Verde, the golems saw a man running far ahead of the main force, he looked happy. I suspect that was the General."

General Astal nodded, "He has been looking forward to this. Will you be joining us in the assault?"

"I'm not much of a soldier," Isaac replied, apologetically, "The souls in these golems are not particularly sophisticated. They can fight and they won't injure themselves, but they can be tricked if I am not directing them. I will keep hidden, but with the Ark here I doubt strategy has much purpose anymore."

"Very well, go now. We must lead the men into battle." Ordered General Vanheim. The Golemancer bowed and ran off at an angle to the city. The man was not soldier and what he wanted in this war was anyone's guess, but at least he took orders. The armies marched off toward the breach in the wall, it was time for the battle of Iskandar to begin in earnest.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Dragon Lord on June 08, 2012, 07:52:46 PM
“Archers!” Edward shouted. “Fire!”

The lines of Archers behind him fired into the air and rained down a storm of arrows onto the Demi-human ranks that had gathered. A group of Beastmen Earth Mages had managed to halt the Golem advance so Edward had resorted to conventional ranged attacks until the Golems could clear the obstruction and continue.

“Fire at will!” he called again as the Archers maintained continuous fire. The defending Demi-humans were forced to retreat under the onslaught, including the mages. This gave the Golems the time they needed to work without interruption.

“”We’re nearly through,” Astal said, coming to stand next to his friend. “What about the mages?”

“I don’t want to risk damaging the Golems,” Edward replied. “Besides, we might need them to save their energy for later and the Golems are more efficient anyway.”

“I’ll order the catapults drawn up,” Astal said, turning to head back to the supply lines. “We can use the rubble for ammunition.”

After another twenty minutes or so, the Golems had cleared a path through the rubble. Edward ordered them to move forward and signalled his own troops to advance behind them. The Golems were a huge advantage but Edward still preferred to have humans involved.

“General Vanhiem,” a familiar voice said from behind him. Edward turned to find Captain Marciel approaching. “I’m curious why you haven’t used the Ark yet? It seems a waste to let good men and valuable Golems perish when you could destroy most of the city with a few swings of your sword.”

“It’s exactly that reason that I haven’t used the Ark,” Edward answered shortly. “The Ark’s power is unpredictable and very difficult to control. Unleashing it could not only destroy the enemy but our own forces as well. I am not in the habit of explaining the reasons for my actions to those under my command. I will make use of the Ark only when I decide it is necessary, is that clear?”

“Of course, my Lord,” Marciel said, bowing low to the ground. “My most sincere apologies, I was simply curious.”

“You know the old saying, Captain,” Edward said. “Curiosity killed the cat.”

“If only, my Lord,” Marciel laughed. “If that were the case there would be one less Demi-human species to deal with. If you’ll excuse me, my Lord, the Emperor has asked that I investigate the archives in the city for information about the other Arks.”

“I already have people seeing to that,” Edward argued.

“Truly?” Marciel said with feigned surprise. “Well, I do have my orders. Besides, would it not be better for two pairs of eyes to carry out such a search?”

Without waiting for an answer, Marciel snapped his fingers. Shadows curled up from the ground around him and began pulling him into their depth. Within seconds Marciel had disappeared.

“Perfect,” Edward cursed to himself. “A shadowmancer.”

Shaking his head, he gave orders for Astal to take charge of the command point and led a division of soldiers into the city proper. It took only a few minutes before they met heavy resistance and soon Edward found himself in the thick of battle. Featherfolk mages reigned fire and lightning from above, trying to destroy the Golems, with limited success. The Beastmen, especially the bear tribe and the largest among the tiger tribe were having better luck, their speed giving them the advantage over the slow ponderous Golem. Edward carved through a wolf Beastman when an officer ran up to him.

“My Lord,” he panted, gasping for air.

“Easy, Lieutenant,” Edward said, grabbing the man’s arm. “Take a deep breath.”

“It’s General Verde,” the soldier gasped. “He’s been cut off from the rest of the force. He only has a few men and a Golem with him.”

“*Bleep* Verde,” Edward snarled. “Colonel Tiberius, take over here! I’m going to rescue General Verde!”

“Yes sir,” a female officer yelled back. “Good luck, sir!”

“Let’s go,” Edward said. He, the lieutenant, Senna and half a dozen other soldiers raced off to rescue the overeager General. Before he left, Edward made sure that Brynhilda was secure in the scabbard at his back.



Leon and his group met with very little resistance as they approached the city. It was only as they reached the southern gate that they were noticed. Arrows launched from the wall soared towards them. Leon slowed and cast a wave of wind magic from his open palm. The gust of wind shredded the arrows before they even got close.

As they neared the wall, the group changed their positions, with Dimitri and Valeria in front, followed by Steeg and Leon and then Elise. Leon began to chant and a faint blue light gathered around his hands. Just before they reached the gate, Leon and Steeg stopped and the mage placed his hand on the Barbarian’s weapon. The blue light passed to the hammer, which began to glow. Leon and the two warriors leapt out of the way as Steeg swung his weapon hard at the gate. The first blow seemed to shake the entire wall. The second saw the gate begin to splinter. At the third swing, the gate exploded inwards and the group dashed through the smoke into the city.

Valeria and Dimitri engaged first, attacking the demi-human soldiers that had been stunned by the gates destruction. The swerved around one another till they made contact with the enemy. Dimitri’s spear spun in his hands, impaling some while smashing into the heads and legs of others. Valeria’s sword was all but invisible as she sliced through steel, wood, armour and flesh.

Leon took the opportunity to cast reinforcement spells on himself, augmenting his strength, speed and resistance to injury. Steeg stayed further back, covering Elise while she cast protective spells over the others.

A large cat Beastman carrying heavy broadsword charged towards Leon. The mage let his opponent close in before he sidestepped away from the first overhead attack, chanting briefly as he moved. Before the Beastman could recover, Leon slammed his fist into its spine and released the spell. Electricity surged through its body and the Beastman howled in agony before sliding to the ground.

Leon spun and began to incant again, fire igniting on his fists. He summersaulted into the middle of another group, faster than the eyes could see, and began to strike out at them. Every time his fists impacted a body the flames on his hands exploded, knocking aside the huge Beastmen like they were ragdolls.

He looked around and saw that most of the defending force, taken by surprise, had been defeated. He signalled to the others and the group continued through the city, looking for the Archives.



Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: MegaFun on June 09, 2012, 11:29:16 AM
Petyr woke up in a dazed state. By the time he could compose himself, he realized he was no longer on the raft. The Sun shone brightly right above his head and he was greeted by the pleasant aroma of cooking meat in the middle of tall palm trees, where he could see the blue of the ocean to the north. Was he dead? Was he in heaven? Could the demi-human girl have killed him when he let his guard down?

“Welcome back. You may have noticed a change in scenery.”

The voice pulled Petyr back to reality and he took a good five seconds to digest what was happening. He then let out a sigh of relief.

“So you spared me,” he said. “I’m glad to see how we’ve become such good friends.”

“Don’t flatter yourself,” the girl scoffed. “I only did it for myself. Harsh times have called for harsh measures... the High Council have increased security around Hellios waters with a horde of Merfolks, and they said ‘Kill him or die with him’. So I killed him.”

Petyr chuckled. “I’m sorry you had to do that to one of your own kin. I’m still flattered, because you could have chosen to kill me.”

“That’s right. You owe me big time,” she rolled her eyes.

As soon as the meat finished cooking, the two pulled their daggers out and feasted on the meal. Petyr reflected upon everything that had happened in the space of the last eight hours and could not believe that he was finally on Hellios soil, next to some random thief he met by chance in Ashval. He never expected that she would lead him out of the country. Now that she had fulfilled her end of the bargain, he did promise to let her go and forget everything that had just happened. So as soon as he finished gobbling up his lunch of the day, he walked over to his luggage and began to pack everything. His supplies seem to be perfectly intact; he had food, his new bow, arrows, his sword and two daggers. He was almost out of throwing knives but he figured it’d be a good time to switch to the arrows anyway. His arsenal of venoms and toxins were relatively intact, though he only had one more vial of sleeperweed as he lost the other one somewhere in the middle of the ocean. Poor fishes.

“Where are you going?” she asked. “Don’t move without me.”

“Didn’t we have a deal? As soon as I can stand on my own two feet in this country, we will part ways.”

“You bloody idiot,” the girl hissed. “You can’t stand on your own two feet in this country. This country is filled with demi-humans who would gladly rip your vocal chords out upon sight. If they know that you are a human, you won’t survive in this country. Nuh-uh. Nope. So I’m going to help you before you can actually fend for yourself.”

Petyr sighed and sat back down with a disappointed look. “Alright, I guess you do have a point. Truth be told I didn’t really have a clear mission in my head. I just wanted to... get away from the Empire.”

“What madness made you want to do that anyway?” she asked.

He smirked. “I don’t know where to begin... or if you will believe it.”

“I’ve had a crazy life and heard all sorts of ridiculous things. Challenge accepted.” she replied.

“Let’s just say... the Empire kind of ruined my childhood. I can’t remember if I was six or seven back then, but they enslaved me to be an assassin, and when I’m not out killing people, the Empire pretty much locked me up in a cell, where I would wail like an angry wolf every single goddamned night and they would hit me for that. If I tried to escape after one of my kills, they would always track me down and hit me too. It was only two years ago that I was able to escape to Ashval. Not without a few deaths of course. I called one of the guards and bashed his skull against the bars until it caved in. I managed to free other people too, so everything went smoothly after that,” Petyr chuckled rather maniacally. “It was quite funny to see how behind all those muscles and the shining imperial armor, they were really just big sacks of meat... and then, there’s still this one guy who I owe something to. It’s only a matter of time before I can repay my debts... ten years of pain and suffering will be paid back.”

The girl seemed to be taken aback by his account. Of course, he had never told anyone about his escape in such great detail (and it was a lot bloodier than that) apart from Lyria and Fernis, so he wouldn’t be surprised with such a reaction because they were probably equally freaked out than she was, if not more. However, in the rather awkward silence that ensued, Petyr saw something else in her eyes. It was something akin to understanding... somehow she seemed to understand what he had gone through.

“I see... I must say I can relate to that,” the girl smiled and began to get up. “But you’re still stupid. Brave, I guess, but stupid. Anyway, come on now, we should go.”

“By the way, I’m Petyr,” he smiled and finally introduced himself as he stood up. “Since we’re friends now. And just in case you wanted to know the name of the man who you had to kill a Hellios guard for, since I apparently owe you one.”

“Feraal, just so you can pay back what you owe.”

---

“I hope you’ve understood the basic geography of this country,” Feraal said.

“Yep. The capital and the woods of the High Council is to the east, a bit further south from here. Past that would be the Green Mountains, and beyond that would be the desert,” Petyr replied. He had grasped the gist of the country’s geography, but he would need to stop by at some town or city and get a map in order to move on from here. Of course, according to Feraal, that would be impossible. He would probably be slaughtered upon sight at some city’s gates.

As he looked around for the end of the forest, he spotted a rising column of smoke in the distance. Seems like a battlezone.

“Hey, what city is that?” Petyr asked, pointing to the pillar of black fog to the far southeast. “It appears to be under attack.”

Feraal paused for a moment. “Iskandar... that must be Iskandar,” she replied. “If Iskandar is truly under attack, then I must make haste to the High Council. The humans have the Ark of Fire, and soon our soil will face infernal wrath. I cannot allow that to happen. Petyr, we will head southeast. We will pass the city of Tsengar on the way, where I can help finding you a little disguise so you can blend in with society. We must then part ways. However, until then, you must remain nearby at all times. Hellios is no place for humans.”

Petyr nodded and retrieved his bow, readying himself against any threats that might face them. “Let’s go.”

OoC: Thanks, I was just getting started :P
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Ultima on June 09, 2012, 03:36:56 PM
OoC: Sorry Mega, gonna have to back track. Dragon and I agreed on a different direction of events. The story will still make sense.

Just as the pair began walking in the direction of Tsengar, Feraal heard the slow padding of armoured feet. “Stall them...” she whispered to Petyr before scrambling up a nearby tree and waiting in the shadows in silence.

“Stall who..?” Petyr asked before a distinctive horn call answered his question. A battalion of Imperial troops was heading to the battle in Iskandar from the south. Seeing that Petyr was human, they had mistaken him for a soldier.

Feraal watched silently as the soldiers shuffled him into their ranks. She drew two arrows, aimed them at the soldiers nearest Petyr and loosed.

The resulting confusion caused the soldiers to spin and whirl around, oblivious to where the attack came from.

Petyr caught on quickly, killing two more soldiers with throwing knives and two more after that with a pair of elegant and vicious looking daggers.

Meanwhile, Feraal continued to disorient the platoon with a flurry of arrows until only the captain remained. She leapt off the branch, landed on the officer, knocking him to the ground and held one of her daggers to his throat. “Take a message to your superiors,” she snarled, “It will take a lot more than misfits like you to conquer Hellios. Tell them how you’re entire squadron was embarrassed by a mere two natives.” She released him and he started sprinting away. “TELL THEM THAT HELLIOS IS DEFENDED!” The emerald around her neck began to glow radiantly as it conjured a tornado that engulfed the final soldier and hurled him fifty feet through the air.

“What...was that?” Petyr asked in astonishment.

Feraal ignored him. “We need to get to Iskandar. Tsengar will have to wait.”

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Caius exhaled another earth-shattering roar as his adamantine axe impacted with another golem, causing it to shatter into a thousand pieces. His weapon may have been able to fell the relentless automatons, but it was one of the few that could. The magic-imbued arrows fired by Thenna’s assassins were having some effect but the other ground troops were acting as little more than distractions. The battle was fast approaching its conclusion and the outlook was not pleasant for the demi-humans.
He turned to his lieutenant. “Sound for the retreat. Only Thenna’s assassins and the bare bones of our force must stay. We will buy you some time.”

“High Councillor, don’t sacrifice yourself like this!” he replied in aggravation.

“I’m not. You have your orders.”

The majority of the demi-human forces began to retreat as Caius felled several more golems with the aid of Thenna’s finest warriors. However, he was beginning to tire. It was inevitable that he eventually failed to stop an attack from a golem.

Before the blow landed, a lithe figure leapt over Caius’ head, embedded two daggers into the stone creature’s back and blew it apart with unbelievably powerful wind magic.

Caius was stunned. “Who are you, cat?”

“Feraal, and your welcome!” she hissed, before turning back to the battle.

To Caius’ even greater surprise, a human stood beside her, facing the horde of golems.

“Caius!” a male voice roared over the cacophony, “This war ends today!” The man in question was General Verde in shining green armour. He wore an onyx cape and wielded a vicious scythe that appeared specifically tailored for fighting demi-humans.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: MegaFun on June 09, 2012, 07:00:58 PM
There was a turbulent rush of thoughts and emotions within Petyr. He was confused, terrified, yet thrilled, all at the same time. Suddenly being thrown into a large-scale battle in Hellios only several hours after his departure from Arcadia was certainly having a shocking impact on him. Some of his own countrymen had already fallen at his hands; of course, he did not have to deal with any emotional difficulty in having to slash his own countrymen’s throats, but the sheer profoundness of the moment came from the fact that he was a human fighting alongside the demi-humans. The Arcadian soldiers he had battled were startled to see a human on the Hellios side, while a few others were terrified as they had actually recognized him.

The golems were definitely a lot harder to take down. They were sturdy beings and while Feraal had little trouble destroying them with her extremely powerful wind magic, Petyr’s skills were limited and he had to deal with them systematically. As one of the golems began its assault on him, Petyr drew his sword, circled towards the back of the earthly creature and smashed a hole through a weak spot on its tough shell. Before the golem could counter, he shoved his palm onto the gap and summoned a violent explosion of gust which destroyed a large part of the creature inside out. With much of its shell blasted away, Petyr grabbed the scabbard of his sword and smacked the golem’s core with all his might, shattering it and completely shutting down the adversary.
Petyr panted relentlessly and almost fell to his knees. He was running very short of breath and his magic was seriously draining his stamina; he had learned it during his time with the Empire, but it wasn’t really used for killing people so he was not accustomed to this intensive usage of magic. His green magical glyph glowed menacingly, except now it glowed for the entire length of his arms instead of just the back of his palms. He could not protect himself through a sustained wind barrier because the situation demanded far more offensive output than defensive output, and the battle with the horde of golems had taxed him physically. His breaths were faster and deeper, his heart pounded with what felt like as much force as the impact of the Hellios leader’s earth-shattering axe and the veins in his arm were bulging alongside the intricate glyphs engraved upon it. He paused and watched as Feraal impressively leapt from golem to golem and blasted them to oblivion, while the ferocious and enormous leader of the Hellios roared with battle cries as his axe ruthlessly destroyed the golems that were coming at him.

“The war ends today!” a human shouted several minutes ago. He recognized the voice; it was General Verde, affectionately nicknamed “The Butcher” by some of the more patriotic soldiers for his utter ruthlessness against the people of Hellios. He never liked that man; he had previously gone on recon missions with him and he simply loathed his personality. Once, he thought that the reason was because he was too cold and ruthless for his own good, which was a deplorable trait even to some of his own men, but then Petyr realized he couldn’t say anything because he was essentially the same kind of person against his opponents. Maybe he would actually understand how that man feels when he’s surrounded with a horde of infuriatingly fanatical Imperial loyalists. Those were the worst kind of soldiers, the ones who treated him like a piece of trash who only knew how to talk and kill, like those guards who faced their gruesome ends when he finally managed to escape the clutches of the government.

Petyr realized too late that one should not be absorbed in their own thoughts amidst a bloodbath when one of the soldiers slashed him across his upper back. He hissed in pain and turned to return the favor, vigorously swinging his wakizashi up and down and back and forth to land a blow on his attacker. The soldier lunged with his sword towards Petyr and he retaliated with a sudden burst of gale in the soldier’s direction. He flinched and Petyr nimbly shifted his sword to his left hand to send a second wave of gale, blasting his precious sword ten meters away and effectively disarming him. The now-terrified soldier began to turn back and ran with his tail between his legs when he dashed towards him, smacked his helmet with his scabbard and sent it flying into the air. The soldier fell onto the ground and Petyr pointed his sword at his throat.

“You... you’re... the panther,” the soldier said, terror etched deep into his face.

“I don’t remember you,” Petyr said sternly as he pushed the bloodstained tip of the sword against the man’s windpipe. “Enlighten me.”

“Mercy, mercy!” the soldier pleaded desperately.

“Tell me,” Petyr shoved his sword even closer. “Why are you fighting for the rotten Empire? Why are you spilling your blood and others’ blood just because the Empire commanded it? The Empire sees victory as its total reign over this continent and the five Arks. Is that really what you  believe?”

The soldier trembled from extreme fear. Petyr was considerably younger than him, but alongside being treated as pieces of *Bleep* many young assassins in the Empire were also secretly renowned for their abilities, himself included. Some of them have rather affectionately nicknamed them “Death’s gatekeepers”. It was not uncommon to see a common soldier scared out of his wits in front of one such individual.

“No... Petyr... but I could ask you the same... right? The Hellios... they also want the same thing... both sides want the five Arks and the total eradication of the human race, right? Is it not natural for us to... fight back?”

“Well, to me it seems like *Bleep* Arcadia imposed the war on Hellios and its people, but I guess it’s just my young and rebellious mind screwing around with me. Anyway, that was a good answer,” he smiled, pulling the sword away from his throat. The soldier seemed immensely relieved.

“For that, I shall give you a quick death.”

Petyr abruptly plunged the sword into the soldier’s heart. His victim’s eyes widened and he made a faint gasp just as the sword came out through the other side of his body. He twisted the sword as he yanked it out, with bright, red blood gushing out of the hole. The soldier muttered an unintelligible sound which sounded something like “why”, but Petyr had violently extinguished his life. He fell backwards and was dead within seconds, his empty eyes staring at the skies.

Petyr turned around and caught a glimpse of Feraal in the distance, throwing him a twisted smile over his recent kill. He replied with an equally twisted smirk and ran over to her side to assist her with her adversaries.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Metal Chocobo on June 10, 2012, 07:44:31 PM
Cilia had found a small cave overlooking the city to wait out the battle. She had looked through the pages of the book, but it was all scribbles after the first few pages. No words that she could read. The battle below continued on, the golems forcing their way through walls, knocking soldiers aside and eventually being surrounded and beaten down. They were not strong enough, not well-built enough. Perhaps it would have been better to build fewer, stronger golems. Her birds-eye view and her contemplations were visible to her master as he made his way around the city and up to the cave.

As Isaac climbed the last few uneven rocks to reach Cilia, he discovered her sitting, staring intently at the fight below, already holding the book out to him. He took it and thanked her before making his way into the cave itself, he couldn't risk other people watching this.
The cover of the book was scratched and broken but the binding still l held through some kind of miracle, and the pages seemed intact. Flicking through them, Isaac searched for specific page. What the runes said was lost on him, lost to time, but he knew enough to use the book, he just needed to find the right place.
Near the back, he found it. A page with an out of place red stain on it. Blood. Of course, it was always blood.
Isaac drew his staff, narrowing the end with his mind, forcing it to reshape and form a sharp point. He allowed the tip to touch his thumb, there was an instant of pain before a drop of blood appeared. Isaac gently pressed this to the page and hoped it would be enough, he didn't like the idea of making a deeper cut.

Nothing happened. The cave stayed silent and the book did not react. Isaac still could not read it. Dismayed, he pulled his hand away. Iskandar had archives, perhaps what he needed could be found there.

As he turned to leave, the book suddenly jumped, bouncing around and tearing at itself. Contorting and breaking and reforming until a small, paper man stood before him wearing a fine leather cloak made from the binding.

"Your blood says you are a Claywright. Isaac Claywright, it says. I have gathered dust and held my secrets for many years. Why do you seek me now?"

Isaac stared at the tiny creature for a while, it seemed impossible that the paper creature knew the answers, but the evidence suggested he had read the other journals wrong. The blood would not translate the book so much as transform it. Gathering himself he answered, "The war has begun again and the Arks are returning. I seek the Ark of Earth. I believe you will know where the Grey hid it."

"I do not know for certain. I now that you should be convinced to take a different course of action, but if the other Arks have been found then this is inevitable. They are unstable and dangerous. I know that Wind and Fire were sent North and Earth and Water taken South. If you seek Earth, it should not be hard to find. Even dormant its power should be visible. Seek the place where the Earth is strongest, but be wary of its power."

Isaac bowed his head, "Thank you, tiny, paper person. I must admit that you make me curious, what exactly are y-"
The Golemancer turned and looked back toward the city. The golems were falling quickly but he could feel something. Not the Ark of Fire, but like it.
There was another Ark in the city.
Turning back quickly, Isaac asked, "How do I make you a book again? We really need to leave." It was hard to keep the urgency from his voice.

The paper man began to flutter and break apart, "Simply instruct me to." It answered from somewhere as it changed back again.

Isaac grabbed the tome from the ground and ran from the cave with Cilia falling in behind him immediately. He knew how to find the Earth Ark, he just needed to get there. It was possible it was in Iskandar, but the golems would be long gone if that were true. Stretching his mind out he sought other golems. Not the ones for war. The ones for repair, for household tasks, for simpler things. He had left them across the Trench and it was almost impossible to connect with them but they were there and the heard their orders. They were to board the Simurgh, his airship, and bring it to the coast. They had a lot of ground to cover.
There two Arks in Iskandar now. After what the Ark of Fire had done, the city would fall. Either Arcadia hod found another one and Hellios did not stand a chance, or Helios had found one and city was going to become collateral. Either way, he was running.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: rsslayersr on June 10, 2012, 10:51:10 PM
The journey went smoothly. Three days through the rough terrain of the mountains and another three trough the jungle, a final day was needed to cross the woodland until they reached the High Council. Alice and Tobias were setting up camp, the sun was going down.
Tobias made sure the campfire would be ready before night fell. The collection of wood was large, but it was soaked after the trip through the unstable rainy jungle. Making an easy fire proved to be rather difficult for him.

"*Wark* wood!" Tobias puffed. "Why didn't I go for that mage class..".
"Too difficult for the mighty fire master? Oh, where is that fire Ark when you need it?" Alice laughed as her witty comment reached the Mreast's ears.

"Certainly delightful this very night, are you not, my dearest dove?" The tinder finally made its name worth and the wood started to smolder. Tobias reacted by adding the driest twigs he could gather.
He tried his best not turning it into another failure. Time was ticking. Alice looked up at the sky, it was getting darker, the moon seemed to grow, its yellow light started to overtake the sun. The campfire finally gave hope to this night. The leaves surrounding them danced as a weak gust of wind went through the forest. The fire grew stronger.
Darkness took over, in more than one way.

The fire's warmth spread through the area, giving a pleasured feeling to the two. It flickered like the candles in the Green mountain library Alice spent almost half her life in. Knowledge came with a price. She took a few pages from her pouch, the same ones from the Tome, and started examinating them. The arcane letters were gibberish in its untranslated state, good thing it wasn't her first time reading these kinds of texts.

"You can't stop, can you?" Tobias poked the fire with a stick, the campfire sparked.

"It's life. It has been for a while.."

"And? Has life been treating you well?" she felt uneasy about the tone Tobias asked her in.

"Has life ever treated someone well? Tobias, get some sleep, you've deserved it."

He seemed worried about the young dove before him. Her back was facing him, he decided to let it go for today.
Alice drifted away into the text she held before her. The secrets of the Ark where always in her reach. Basic things, like the colours of the stones where simple to find. Even a slight hint about the locations of them, even the spread over the continents, were never found easily.

The pages did not satisfy her, the same text she already had seen over and over again. The quest seemed to be endless. She threw the paper in anger towards the fire, it caught fire instantly.

A cold feeling went through Alice her spine. She looked around, the dense wood revealed less than enough for strangers of the woods, but she knew something was out there. She could feel at least five life forms lurking out there. Could they've been soldiers of The High Council? No, not with this stealth.
She reached out for her bow, the arrows where already nearby. With a small poke she tried to make Tobias aware of the situation, or at least wake him up. He moaned and rolled over, with one eye closed he looked upon Alice.

"Tobias." she whispered. " We have company, no friendlies."

His other eye opened. Slowly he crawled up to his knees. The silence was dooming. Alice tried to find the location of the unknowns, but it was hard to concentrate. Five moving targets, it was chaos for her. Tobias readied his sword, it was a matter of seconds until the first strike would come.

"Wait!" Alice whispered nervously. She placed an arrow and stretched the string on her bow, still aiming low. Something wasn't right, the attackers left. Didn't they? Five changed into four, then three. Tension raised and gusts of wind made the scene complete. A mysterious thing made the danger leave. She looked at Tobias, he was still waiting anxiously. It went on until there was just the last one standing. Alice aimed, the leaves made way for the one that walked through.

"Erica?" Alice exclaimed. The young girl stood before her. Her eyes were empty and her lips half smiling. A few splatters of blood were on her cheek, she held a small dagger in her left hand, blood dripped from it.

"Hey Alice. Good to see you. How's your journey going?" The innocent sparkle returned to the girl her eyes.

"How..?"

"Throwing knifes, some poison... Why are you looking at me like that?"

Tobias tried to follow what was going on. It was troubling for all.

"Erica.. Why?" Alice asked in a serious tone.

"Easy. I was bored."

Tobias walked up to her, he sheathed his blade. "Go home, now."
Erica smirked. "No."
Alice said the same, but Erica refused.
"You'll need me." she said.
"Is that that so?" Tobias tried to figure out what went through her head.

"Four unknowns, you would've been dead without me."
Anger raised inside Tobias.
"You're young, not fit for battle. I'll say it again, go home!"

"Guys!" Alice interrupted the argument. "I'm too tired for this *wark*. Erica, we'll deal with you tomorrow, after we reach the Council."

"What are you saying, Alice?" Tobias asked.

"I'm going too?" Erica said excited.

"Don't get your hopes up, for now, let's head forward. This place creeps me out."
Alice equipped her weapon to her back and spread her wings out. "Guys. Now!"
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Dragon Lord on June 11, 2012, 01:25:10 AM
Leon and his group reached the Archives without much further incident, the majority of the cities defenders were engaged with the Arcadian Golems to the north. Everything was going to the General’s plan. They jogged up the long marble steps to the main entrance. Leon cast a quick spell and fired a bolt of lightning at the huge oak doors, blasting them open.

“Steeg and Dimitri,” Leon said. “You stay out here. Signal if there’s trouble. Elise and Valeria, come with me.”

The two warriors nodded and took up positions on either side of the door while the others went inside. The Archive was massive, with three levels full of scrolls, books and other documents.

“Well,” Valeria said. “This is going to take a while.”

“We don’t have time to waste,” Leon said, heading for the stairs. “Elise, take the top floor. Valeria, take the bottom. Skim read, but make sure you don’t miss anything important.”

“Or,” Elise smiled as she walked towards a desk at the side of the main chamber. “We could just check the index.”

Leon and Valeria looked at each other as Elise pulled a thick notebook to the centre of the desk and began flipping through it. After a few minutes she looked up and smiled.

“Ancient Relics,” she said, heading for the stairs. “Second level, section 12, that was easy, wasn’t it.”

It didn’t take much searching before they found a scroll and two large volumes that contained information on the Ark of Infinity. Leon turned to call for the others outside when they all heard a cry of pain. They rushed to the door just in time for Steeg to fly across the hall and hit one of the bookcases hard. Elise quickly ran over and began to heal him, golden light shining form her palms.

“Steeg, what happened?” Leon asked.

“Be careful,” Steeg coughed. “Shadows…cough cough…Dimitri…cough…shadows… killed…”

“Dimitri,” Elise gasped.

“Yes,” a voice laughed. “I’m very sorry about that, but they got in my way.”

They looked up to see a man wearing Arcadian officer’s armour strutting into the hall. He had long black hair, violet eyes and a vicious smile on his lips.

“I tried to tell them,” he shrugged. “But they wouldn’t listen.”

“I've seen you before,” Leon said. “You’re Captain Marciel!”

“Ah,” Marciel smiled. “You must be the ‘operatives’ that General Vanhiem sent to secure the information about the Ark. I hope you succeeded, it would make my life so much easier.”

“Wait,” Elise said. “If he’s an Arcadian officer, doesn’t that mean we’re on the same side?”

“Not really,” Leon snarled.

“I’m afraid he’s quite right,” Marciel shook his head. “Although technically, we all serve the Emperor, in reality there are many different factions in the Empire working towards their own purposes. And now, I must ask you to hand over anything and everything you found relating to the Ark of Infinity and its fragments.”

“No chance,” Leon spat.

“Oh dear,” Marciel sighed. “I’d rather not have to resort to violence. The books might get damaged. But, if you insist.”

Marciel slashed with his arm and dark blades of energy erupted from the shadows around him and raced towards the group. Leon and Valeria jumped in front of Elise and Steeg to protect them. Leon raised a magical barrier while Valeria deflected some of the shadow-blades with her sword. Without hesitation, Marciel launched three consecutive volleys of his shadow-blades but the mage and the swordswoman blocked each strike.

Leon retaliated with a series of powerful lightning bolts but the shadows around Marciel formed a fragmented sphere which intercepted the attacks. Valeria charged forward, cutting away the shadow-blades Marciel sent to kill her. Just as she was close enough to strike for his head, the shadows engulfed the assassin and he vanished. They each stood tense, waiting for him to resurface. Leon sensed Marciels arrival an instant before he materialised behind Elise, a shadow-blade extending from his arm, raised to strike her down. Leon cast as quickly as he could but he knew he wouldn’t make it in time. Just as the blade fell, Steeg dragged Elise out of the way and threw himself in the path of the weapon. The Shadow-blade cut him from his shoulder, across his chest and down to his waist. The Barbarian fell to the ground, dead before he hit the floor.

Leon howled in rage and grief as destructive magic exploded from his hands, fire and lightning searing across the hall toward the Arcadian lord. Marciel was barely able to avoid the full brunt of the firestorm but was still sent careening across the room. Leon didn’t let up, hurling one destructive magic after another, trying desperately to avenge his fallen friend. Marciel didn’t have the chance to recover and could do nothing but race from cover to cover, staying one step ahead of the mage’s fury.

In desperation, Marciel raced across to Elise, forcing Leon to halt his assault. Valeria tried to attack him from behind but Marciel was able to take the scroll from Elise and dance away before her blade struck.

“I think it might be time to cut my losses,” Marciel panted. The shadow’s gathered around him, pulling him into their depths and away from the Archive.

Leon howled in rage.



Verde snarled as his scythe spun in his hands. He brought the weapon down in a vicious whirling slash but was deflected by the Beastman’s axe. Caius grinned as he countered the furious General’s attack with a punishing series of strikes that forced him back one step after the other. Verde swung his weapon at the Beastman’s feet but Caius caught the attack and forced the scythe to the side. He followed up with a punch to the chest that actually dented the General’s armour. Verde stumbled backwards, practically frothing at the mouth.

Caius took the opportunity to briefly look around. The feline Beastman Feraal was using some very powerful wind magic. The Golem she’d been fighting had been reduced literally to dust by the scything winds. Between that and his own soldiers, the battle was starting to turn in their favour.

Verde attacked again, forcing Caius to focus on his own fight. The humans attacks were almost frenzied and Caius was struggling to keep up. Taking a risk, He charged into the Generals attack, knocked away the scythe, and barrelled into him. They tumbled to the ground and both their weapons slid across the ground away from them. Verde managed to grapple his way on top of Caius and began raining furious blows to the Beastmans head. Cais responded by shoving Verde away, getting his foot up between them and kicking the human across the ground. They both scrambled upwards and ran for their weapons.

Caius was just faster and managed to grab his weapon first. He spun around and raced back toward his opponent. Verde swung his weapon but the Beastman deflected the blow and chopped with his own axe, severing the General’s left arm at the elbow. Verde dropped to the ground, howling in pain and Caius raised his weapon above his head and brought it sweeping down.

“Councillor!” one of his soldiers shouted. “Look out!”

A blade swung out of no-where and caught the blade of his axe, just before it fell. It was a blade he recognised all too well, Lohengrim.

“Wonderful day isn’t it Caius,” General Vanhiem smiled.

“It’ll rain before the sun sets,” Caius chuckled in response.

The two combatants broke apart. Senna appeared behind Vanhiem, grabbed Verde and vanished again.

“Let’s dance, shall we?” Vanhiem said.

Caius growled and attacked.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Ultima on June 11, 2012, 02:40:10 AM
Normally, Caius would enter a fight fully on the offensive. Since he was so skilled at strong he usually came out on top. Vanheim was one of the exceptions. His calm tenacity with a blade made him beyond a formidable opponent. The demi-human leader sensed that this one fight would decide the battle and the fate of everyone participating. The bear easily predicted Vanheim’s feints and blows; this was the warm up. However, he did little retaliating.

“What’s wrong?” Vanheim asked after several more minutes of parrying and feinting, “This isn’t the confident warrior I fought all those years ago. You’ve lost your edge.”

The General became more aggressive with his assaults, putting more weight behind his swings and strikes. Caius blocked these easily due to his naturally higher strength, but he was finding little opportunity to counter. Vanheim’s defensive stances were air tight.

Caius felt his anger rising at his helplessness. He was being made a fool of by a mere human. One particularly vicious, vertical swipe of his axe caught the General by surprise and knocked him off balance. Caius swung round to his right and embedded his fist right into Vanheim’s spine.

If not for Vanheim’s armour, the fight would have ended then and there. Unfortunately, he regained his composure almost instantly and struck Caius in the face with the pommel of his sword. The bear stumbled backwards and brought his axe upwards to block a dangerously powerful strike from Lonhengrim. The pair stood in this stalemate, putting all their strength against each other to force the other back. Caius had the strength, Vanheim had the leverage. “We can’t fight like this forever,” Caius grunted.

A female voice suddenly cried out in pain.

Both fighters withdrew from their struggle. Caius found the newcomer, Feraal with her bow aimed at where Vanheim had been standing moments ago. The General was knelt on the ground, cradling the body of a female human. It was obviously someone he had great feelings for.

“You...killed...her!” he seethed. A red glow began to envelop General Vanheim’s entire body. A fiery blaze of light was emanating from somewhere on his back. The Ark was reacting to the soldier’s emotions. He took a deep breath and roared his anger to the heavens. As he did so, a cascading tornado of fire obscured his body from view. All fighting ceased as the combatants turned to gaze upon the source of immense heat and light. It was too much for many that were close to the inferno. Their echoing cries of pain were nothing compared to that of the man at the centre of the blaze.
----------------------------------------
Feraal hadn’t meant to kill that girl. She was aiming for the General to save her leader. Now there was a magic tornado of fire, which seemed like it would kill everyone for miles around, erupting from the ground. The only similar magic she had seen... ”Came from this emerald around my neck...” She ran forwards toward the leader of her people and focused everything on remembering how she conjured the earlier tornado.

“What are you..?” Caius began before his voice was obscured by the echoing roar of winds of unimaginable power and the immense light emanating from the jewel around her neck. This was strength unlike anything she had ever felt before. She gathered as much power as she could and hurled it towards the inferno.

The clash was over in moments. Feraal witnessed none of it...
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: jedakiller on June 11, 2012, 10:45:58 PM
Darhin and his wolf companion had traveled for three days straight now, slowly the sun started to rise behind the trees.
"Can't we stop for a minute?" Collin said. He was panting heavily.

Darhin stopped and looked back, he saw Collin bent on his knees. The weight became too much for him, he was nor a warrior nor build for these exercises.
"Come here, I'll carry that." Collin handed over his leather bag. It was filled with the weapons they took from the outcasts. "You'll be happy to hear we're almost done."

The amount of trees became thinner, in the distance a town emerged.
"Ashval.." he thought to himself. The worse of scum couldn't find him here.

"We're.. here?" Collin asked. He sighed of relieve.

"It's Ashval, probably the most quiet place around. Hehe, I hate it."
The landscape went downwards at a sharp angle. Before Darhin could do something about it, Collin stepped forward. He started tumbling down.

Darhin rammed his boots in the earth and slid down after him. He laughed.
 "You're alright boy? Quite a... show you put on there." he said, helping his new friend up.

"Come on, you can play when you're on solid grounds."
Darhin grabbed a piece of rope from his pouch. "Collin, you won't be liking this.."


They entered the village. Darhin was holding a rope that was attached to the cub's neck. The worn armour on him made him look like a new caught slave. Even for this town a weird sight, but it was necessary if they didn't want people bothering them.

"I have my own place around here. Nothing more than a small hunters home, but it'll do." Darhin pulled the leash. "You're falling behind."

He walked up to the nearest blacksmith. Something seemed missing. His regular smith wasn't here. The child always had the right insights, how unfortunate. "Furry friend, stay back." he ordered the wolf.

Swords were placed in a metal rack and armour was hanging on the walls.
"Ah, you're finally back, traveler. Your order has been received and your new armour is done."
Darhin looked at the smile the smith showed. He threw a small pouch of gold in the air, the smith happily caught it. "Thank you, my fine man." Darhin's face started to look more serious. "How is the war going?"
The smith scouted around, the streets weren't paying attention to the conversation."For Arcadia, we're winning. The-" The smith started to whisper now. "The Ark of Fire was found, soon the rest will follow."
Darhin thanked the man and placed a few coins on his hand.
"You've been of help. Thank you."

"I know, the job promotes the gossip, does it not? Your armour is in the back, you're free to take it." Darhin signed to his companion to wait outside and he went further to the back. It was hot, the oven made the room hotter than the lava pits in the far east.
His armour was displayed before him. You couldn't call it a new set of armor, mostly replacements for his current armor.
He grabbed the leather vambraces and shinguards, he walked over to the table where his anquish was, it was sleeveless.
Darhin orderd a special made one without the sleeves, they slowed him down in battle.
"bleep, what idiot puts a table in the center of the room." he said to himself
His eyes glanced to a medium sized iron plate body. "Hey smith! Do you have one of these in hardened steel?
The man shouted back after a few seconds. "Depends, is gold a problem?"

Darhin walked to Collin and grabbed the leather bag in front of him. It jangled as he brought it to the smith. "Here.  Nobody will be looking for this."

"Very well, check behind the oak door, take one."

He did as told and came back with all his supplies.  "Catch." Darhin threw the plate armour to the wolf. "Next stop, home."

Ooc: I've edited the armor a bit
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Dragon Lord on June 14, 2012, 02:03:44 AM
The flames roared around Edward but he was barely even aware of them. For the first time in years all he cared about was hurting the demi-humans. He glanced down at where Senna lay on the ground, lifeless. He tossed Lohengrim to the ground and ripped Brynhilda from its sheath. The flames around the blade, already burning, ignited in titanic fury.

He turned his attention towards the Beastmen soldiers. He swung Brynhilda again and again, waves of fire lashing across the city, burning everything in their path. The more Edward used the sword, the more intense the flames became. Soon, Edward was standing in the middle of a fiery inferno.

Then, something changed. Edward felt something new, through the Ark. It was a sense of limitless power, different than the Ark of Fire, but similar. Suddenly, the flames produced by the Ark exploded with a new ferocity as gale force winds howled through what was left of the city. The force of energy snapped Edward out of his berserker rage. He looked around himself but could see nothing but flames.

“What have I done?” he whispered.

Then, almost as quietly as it began, the flames were extinguished and the winds ceased. Edward stared around stunned at the sudden silence. Then his world went dark.



The archive hall was silent but for the sounds of Elise’s weeping as she sat huddled over the lifeless bodies of Dimitri and Steeg. Valeria stood protectively over her, staring firmly in the other direction, tears falling silently down her cheek. Leon was leaning against the wall, staring out at the city and listening to the sounds of the battle. After a few moments he sighed and walked over to the two women.

“Come on,” he said quietly, pulling Elise to her feet. “We can’t stay here. We have a mission to complete.”

“We can’t just leave them,” Elise sobbed.

“I’m sorry,” Leon sighed. “But we have to. We’ll give them a cremation but that’s all we have time for.”

Leon and Valeria carried the bodies outside and arranged them into a resting pose. Leon used his magic to ignite their bodies on fire.

“Thanks for everything,” Leon said over the flames. The magical flames burned through the bodies quickly. After a few minutes only charred bones remained.

“Alright,” Leon said roughly. “Let’s get out of here. Make sure we’ve got the two books.”

Before they could move even five feet the world was engulfed by flames. All three were knocked to the ground by the force of the explosion. Leon was barely able to throw up a magical barrier around the three of them before they were roasted alive. As the heat intensified Leon added layer after layer to the barrier until it was the most complex magical field he’d ever created. But still, the fires grew more intense and the shield began to crumble.

“Get down!” Leon roared as the barriers shattered and the fire swallowed him.

An instant before the flames reached Valeria and Elise a man in a grey cloak appeared in front of them out of thin air. He raised a black circular object above his head. The flames surrounding them were sucked into the centre of the ring and vanished. Streams of magical energy from all over the city were being pulled into the ring and as they did the firestorms vanished as if they had suddenly run out of air. Once all the fires in the city had disappeared the man in grey chanted quickly and the ring stopped glowing.

Elise passed out at this point and Valeria was barely able to stay conscious, leaning on her sword. Another man in grey appeared and began to speak to the other.

“Events have progressed more quickly than I feared,” the second man said. He pulled down his hood to reveal a wolf Beastman.

“I warned everyone that we shouldn’t have allowed them to obtain even a single fragment,” the second man replied, also pulling down his hood and revealing a human face.

“What’s done is done,” the Beastman said. “Send the women to the Imperial Camp. They’re lucky you arrived when you did.”

“What about him,” the human said. “He shouldn’t be alive.”

“Interesting,” the Beastman said quietly. “I’ll take care of him.”

“Leon,” Valeria coughed as her vision began to dim.

“Easy child,” the Beastman said softly. “I promise he’ll be safe. Now rest, soon you’ll be back with your own people.”

Valeria’s world turned to darkness.



OoC: Iskander has now been reduced to a total ruin. Because the Imperial forces in Iskander were mostly Golems, Arcadia is able to put an army of humans into Hellios territory. Arcadia advances into Hellios.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: KainCrow on June 14, 2012, 03:27:22 PM
"...You know, I feel bad about this," Vulpe frowned, glancing at the side where his companion stood without any indication of her presence other than her shadow, "I mean, we just watched Iskandar burn... Woman, have you no sympathy toward your own kins?"
"I am a rook," Sinkair spoke quietly, not even sparing a glance at Vulpe frowned, "I never met another featherfolk from my tribe.. And I felt no kinship towards any of them, just as I had never felt any kinship towards others of the Hellios. There is no point in killing those golems.. The force in Iskandar had been outmatched."
"Then we could have just left-"
"Shut the *wark* up," Sinkair suddenly snapped, her eyes still watching the city now that turned into ruins, "if nothing else, my decision to remain and watch allowed me to witness important things- Vulpe, I have not asked you to follow me- you may as well leave before you annoy me enough to kill you."

Vulpe gluped and frantically nodded, his ears slowly lowering above his head- and Sinkair gave another glance down the cliff she was standing, leaning against the trees just to blend in from possible onlookers. Unlike Vulpe who was in emotional state, Sinkair had no problem analysing everything she witnessed in the objective view- after all, she felt no attachment to anything that may or may not have been in Iskandar.

'...That bearman was High Lord Caius, and the girl had the Ark of Air. That means I have no reason to persue any more information on that particular thing..' Sinkair narrowed her eyes, her gaze not leaving the site where the grey robed people standing with some survivors, 'I should probarly have another word with Captain Kaeda for another order, but.. Where have I seen those robes before?'

While Vulpe had been busy mourning and holding himself back from running towards Iskandar when the flame blazed up, Sinkair had seen the fire that once engulfed city- the fire that had been powered by two complementary Arks no less- being suddenly 'sucked up' by something. And being a treasure hunter for three years, Sinkair was quite capable in sensing power of magic. She could do nothing in manipulating, but her sense was good enough- as in, figuring out what she can mess with, and what she should avoid unless she wanted to commit suicide. The magic that radiated for a moment, taking away the power of two Arks, had screamed at Sinkair to flee..
And yet Sinkair stood, watching the grey robed figures- she could not see them well, for even for a featherfolk, the distance was too great- approaching the other figures who seem to be still alive. They somehow seemed familiar to her- not them, but something about their robes annoyed her, as if to taunt her with the fact that she was an amnesiac-..
Sinkair blinked, surprised at her sudden train of thoughts. Had she not remembered those grey robes when she had first woke up with amnesia? ..Yes, the only thing she remembered of her past was that she was being chased before she was found by a council man of the High Council nearby boundary of the Hellios, and that someone wearing grey robes had saved her from her chasers- a bit too late, because she did remember getting her head bashed against a tree, but still..

"...Yes, I have seen those robes before.." Sinkair shook her head, suddenly sighing, "I don't even know how I remember this, it's nothing related to shinies... Those robes are horrible! Grey, with no sense of fashion at all-" Sinkair pouted, whirling around and turning away from the cliff, "I am leaving."
"Wha-? Wait!!" Vulpe cried out, surprised at Sinkair's reaction once more, "You are leaving!? Just like this!?"
"They messed with the power beyond their capabilities to wield," Sinkair scoffed, shaking her head as she walked away from Iskandar, "And if anyone was clever enough, they would have fled from that city immediately the moment they learned that the Arcadians had obtained the Ark of Fire. It is slightly unexpected that they had such a powerful golemancer working for them, not to mention that they had acted very fast- but Arcadia and Hellios's war had been going on like forever.. Iskandar had been a strategically important location, and hence always been under the danger of being attacked." Sinkair stopped walking for a moment, her voice suddenly lighter and childish, "I like shiny things, but I don't have any suicidal tendencies- that place will be swarming with humans soon."

Vulpe gaped- he knew that logically Sinkair was right- but he was more shocked by the fact that Sinkair was already done with being serious and began another 'childish talk' about shinies. However.. He was not completely disappointed.

"I am heading to the nearest Hellios's military base- I need to have another word with Captain Kaeda."
"...YES! You are going to help Hellios, even with those 'I-don't-care-about-anything' attitude!"

Sinkair scoffed, not at all bothered by the fact that Vulpe passed her as he darted forward.

"Dealing with humans is harder, although not many even realise that I am a featherfolk with my wings hidden under my robe," Sinkair remarked, her voice turning slightly whiny, "But really, have all beastmen lost their senses? Haven't their instincts screamed 'flee' when they go near those things? Even from this distance, it wasn't hard to feel that something dangerous was going on at Iskandar purely by my instinct- those Arks reek of danger! What's wrong with that kitty assassin? She was even 'wearing' that around her neck- her bare neck!"

Vulpe had to laugh- of all things, Sinkair seemed to be horrified by the mere prospect of having a direct contact with the Ark- but Vulpe knew inwardly, that if Sinkair, a famous treasure hunter who had enough experiences with powerful items infused with magic, was reacting like this- then this business with the Arks, was trully dangerous.



OoC: Sorry for late update.. *sheepish smile* but I never got around a change to post in the middle of the battle, because by the time I have written, you guys have already progressed.. *shakes head* not that it's bad thing. I am still enjoying my trip with my friends.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Metal Chocobo on June 15, 2012, 05:30:06 PM
The Simurgh had traversed the Trench with such speed that it seemed an insult to the time the ships had taken to cross the water. Isaac had expected to be waiting for it but it was already there ahead of him. Yet, that was not the greatest surprise.

Isaac had ran until he could hardly breathe and then he ran some more just to be sure he was away from the city. He had barely stopped when the firestorm tore through the air. It never reached him, it barely left the city and it was over in an instant.

That could not be right. When he had begun the experiments to construct Cilia he accidentally allowed the cores to touch before he had synchronised them. The cores had shattered, collapsed a wall and blown the legs off a golem on the other side. Those cores were not half as powerful as the ones he ended up using for Cilia, and she had not even a fraction of the power of just one of those Arks. That city should have been burning for months. It should have given off a light like a second sun, but it was not. It was silent.

Isaac walked up the gangway onto the airship. The Simurgh was designed to vaguely resemble a giant bird. Two great wings, a wide tail, even the control room above his head stretched out over the body of the ship in the shape of a bird's head.
In the belly of the ship, golems waited. War golems were too heavy to fly around in a ship this small, so Isaac was greeted by clay golems reminiscent of stick figures. They nodded respectfully and then disappeared to pilot the ship.

The airship was small, containing little more than the cockpit, sleeping quarters, kitchen, bathroom and the main hold which usually just held a desk and some books. Isaac was not fond of flying. Golems were little use in the air but sometimes he needed to be somewhere quickly.
The great propellers began to stir and the ship lifted into the air, heading south in search of the Ark.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Cilia stepped quietly through the ashes of Iskandar. The magical explosions had brought about a change in plans. The golems had been destroyed but any souls still protected by the cores could give valuable insight into the strength of the Arks as well as information on what had stopped them.

Cilia had adopted a dark cloak for this mission, hoping to avoid interference from either side of the conflict while she found the remaining souls.
The city was eerily still. Windows had been destroyed, door ripped off, anything that could be flipped over was flipped over. Except, bizarrely, one golem.
Standing in front of it, Cilia tried to guess his line of sight. Everything seemed to have blown outwards from a point ahead of it, perhaps it had a perfect view of the whole thing. Turning to face it, her right hand reshaped, quickly forming a sharp blade like the tip of a spear which she thrust into the stone sentinel with her inhuman strength. The stone shattered and fell away in a pile of dust, revealing the glowing core at the center.
Almost eagerly, the enchanted soul jumped from the core and disappeared through Cilia's skin, granting her a closer to connection to the remaining souls scattered across the surroundings. There seemed to be four in all. They flew through the air as they felt her calling, gliding from broken husks and even debris she had mistaken for a piece of a wall.

Cilia felt the firestorm tear through the city and waves of magic that had come with it. She saw the gray-robed man and the object he held. The firestorm faded. It seemed there were powers that could combat the Arks. Her master would be interested to hear of this, although it was likely he had just seen it. She headed off into the hills. The Arcadian army, should be nearby. Her master had things to see to, but he still had appearances to keep up. She resumed her usual form and left to search.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Ultima on June 15, 2012, 06:15:24 PM
Feraal awoke with a start. Her breathing was laboured and her vision was obscure. She could smell smoke, the aftermath of a hundred homes burned to the ground. Muted whispers reached her ears, but none of it made sense.

“Lie still...” a deep voice said from beside her, “I need to check the scarring.” It was the great bear, Caius, leader of the demi-humans.

What scarring? He would only find the Ark. Feraal winced in pain as he pulled down her shirt just far enough to see the Ark.

“Our best guess is that when you fought using the Ark that it marked you as the owner,” Caius said, “At least for the moment. These objects are fickle and shrouded in mystery. Who knows how many times they have changed hands across the centuries. In any case, the council will want you to speak with them.”

Feraal could barely find her voice. Her muscles ached and her voice was weak. “Iskandar?” she asked.

“Obliterated...” Caius sighed, “Along with most of the troops that remained behind to fight. The positives are that we severely dented their Golem forces and that our remaining soldiers in Iskandar were merely a token defence force. The negative is that Arcadia now has a hundred mile beachhead upon which to land its troops.”

Nodding, there was only one more worry of Feraal’s “Petyr?” she asked weakly.

“The human is tied up. Had I let him walk freely around the camp, one of my soldiers would find a justification to murder him.” Caius turned away. “That being said, I trust he has no allegiance to the Empire. If he proves his loyalty to me, I will see he is kept from harm.”
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Dragon Lord on June 15, 2012, 11:32:10 PM
Edward sat on the end of the bed in his tent, staring at the walls and listening to the sounds of activity coming from the camp. Brynhilda lay on its usual table but he refused to even acknowledge its presence. He stared down at his hands and the bandages covering the burns he knew had been caused by the Ark of Fire. A small demonstration of the Arks power had burned through steel gauntlets. With the amount of power he’d drawn on he was surprised that he even had hands left at all. In fact, he almost expected it to have killed him outright.

“Senna,” he sobbed, burying his face in his hands. He remembered her as she smiled up at him, dying in his arms.

“Edward, you’re awake!” Astal said as he pushed through the tent-flap. He stopped as he saw the weeping Lord General, then turned and ordered the guards to let no-one in. He walked over to his friend and put his hand on his shoulder.

“I’m sorry, Edward,” Astal said. “I wish there was something I could do to help.”

“It’s alright, my friend,” Edward sighed, raising his head. “She gave her life in service to the Vanhiem family and to the Empire. She’ll have every honour that can be bestowed. Now tell me, what happened?”

“We’re not really sure,” Astal said as he began to pace around the tent. “Most of our forces inside the city were wiped out by the blaze. The entire city has been reduced to a pile of smoking rubble. We assumed it was the Ark of Fire.”

“It was,” Edward said. “But not alone. A feline Beastman arrived. She… killed…she killed Senna and used some kind of wind magic to destroy the Golems. I’m not sure, but I think she had an Ark.”

“The Demi-humans have an Ark?!” Astal gasped.

“I think so,” Edward replied. “The Ark of Wind, I think. After Senna… fell…I lost control. I just wanted to kill every Demi-human I could. Brynhilda and the Wind Ark reacted to each other.”

“The power of two Arks,” Astal said. “That explains what happened to Iskander. Only a few of our soldiers inside the city survived. Colonel Tiberius was able to gather some mages and use the Golems to protect a dozen people or so, but even then they were badly burned. But then something strange happened. The flames just vanished, like they were just sucked away.”

“What happened to the Beastmen with the Ark?” Edward asked.

“As soon as the flames abated I led a force into the ruins,” Astal said. “The mages were able to trace Brynhilda. We found you at almost the same time as a detachment of demi-humans did. It could have come to a fight right there but after what had happened, neither side was really interested in a fight. We collected our casualties and left.”

“What about Caius, the Bear Beastman?”

“He was a bit burned, but alive,” Astal said. “There was a female beastman, probably the one with the Ark, and a human I didn’t recognise. I would’ve tried to rescue him but at the time you were my priority.”

“Senna?”

 “Surprisingly, her body was untouched by the flames,” Astal said. “Maybe the Ark protected her the same way it protected you and the Beastmen.”

Edward sighed, just as the sounds of a fight came from outside the tent.

“What the hell is going on now?!” Astal shouted.



Leon groaned as he awoke and found himself staring at a wooden roof. He turned his head to look around and saw that he was in a small room in a wooden house. There was a window facing out into a forest clearing and he could hear the sound of a river running past the house.

He tried to get up, but found his arms and legs tied securely to the bed.

“What the…?” he gasped weakly.

“Easy lad,” a gruff voice said from the door. Leon looked up, wincing as pain shot through this body, to see a wolf Beastman wearing a grey cloak. His fur was a mix of grey and white and his eyes were a bright blue colour.

“You need to take it easy,” the wolf laughed. “By all rights you shouldn’t even be alive. Don’t push yourself.”

“Where am I?” Leon asked.

“More or less right in the middle of the Hellios Republic,” the wolf said, moving over to check over the bandages covering Leon. Leon tried to move away but the bindings held strong. He reached for his magic to burn away the ropes but was shocked when he couldn’t feel the mana in his body. He tried again and again but still felt nothing.

“What did you do to me?” Leon growled. “What happened to my magic?”

“Your magic is gone,” the Wolf said. “But not because of anything I did. What do you remember about what happened? Do you remember Iskander, the flames?”

Pain flashed through Leon’s head as he remembered the flames. He remembered his magical barriers shattering and the flames slamming into him as if they were an actual physical object. He remembered pain, then a surge of energy passing through his body before everything went blank.

“What happened?” he asked weakly.

“You died,” the wolf sighed, sitting down in the chair beside the bed. “You died when the energy from two fragments of the Ark of Infinity broke through your defences and struck you down. Then your magic kicked in. You must have had more power than any single being my order has ever encountered. Your magic energy, which should have been exhausted as you tried to protect yourself and your companions from the flames, replaced your own life force and healed most of your injuries.”

“I died?” Leon asked.

“Yes,” the Wolf said. “You died and then your magic brought you back to life. But there is a cost. It is unlikely that you will ever be able to use magic again. Sorry.”

Leon simply stared up at the ceiling in shock. After a few moments the wolf reached down and untied the ropes holding the defeated human to the bed.

“You’re injured,” the wolf began. “You’re trapped in the middle of enemy territory with no magic. You can try to run if you like but I doubt you’d survive even a day on your own. You’re safe here. The people here will take care of you until you recover. Then I will have a job for you.”

The grey robed beastman walked out of the room, leaving Leon to his thoughts.


Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: MegaFun on June 17, 2012, 07:55:04 PM
Petyr awoke disoriented in a completely unfamiliar place. He glanced around and saw two figures which vaguely resembled people, but his senses were still muddled from his long sleep and he could not really perceive his surroundings beyond a giant blur. “Is this a dream? Am I dead?” he thought. Thinking it was the former, Petyr closed his eyes again in hopes that it would wake him up, but this thought was broken when he felt something hit his face.

“Ouch,” he muttered. He shook his head and clearly saw the people who were with him; both inhabitants of Hellios. As he looked around, he saw that the entrance to the room was barred, and sure enough, he discovered that his arms were shackled behind his back when he tried to move them. When he attempted to struggle, a searing pain shot through his right arm to his shoulder and his chest, and when he looked down he found that they were covered in bandages. His left arm was relatively undamaged, with a few semi-gruesome scratches along his forearm which had no lasting impact and would probably disappear in a few days. His legs were numb and he felt a dull, throbbing pain in his first attempt at moving them, but it was nothing as serious as whatever had happened to his arm. Content with the condition of his body, he glanced over to his two prison companions and found that they had been staring at him. They must have been as curious as he was as to why a human would be put behind the same bars as the citizens of Hellios.

“You’ve been out for a few days,” the male said. His hooded figure made it almost impossible for Petyr to recognize his face, but he glimpsed the webbed fingers bound by the shackles. Merfolk, it would seem.  “You’re lucky you didn’t suffer too much. It would seem that you were, however, blasted an impressive distance away, but something must have cushioned your impact because otherwise you’d be in a much, much worse position. When you came in here, your right arm was broken and something was wrong with your legs, but you should be fine now. It’s been 3 days. The explosion was kind to you.”

“Explosion? What explosion?” Petyr asked, confused. Something must have happened, but he only found a gaping void in his memory when he tried to recall the last moments before he fell into unconsciousness. The last thing he remembered was scorching heat, a ferocious column of fire... a grief-stricken Arcadian General, furious over the death of someone... probably his loved one... and Feraal... yes, Feraal...

“The explosion that reduced Iskandar into oblivion. Word has it that the Lord General’s Ark began to summon fierce firestorms and an earth-sundering heat wave, and then the cat-girl’s Ark reacted with an equally terrifying cyclone. The resulting clash of the Arks purged everything in its path and obliterated all that was left of Iskandar. The city has fallen,” the girl now replied. She was not hooded like her other companion was and she was clearly a Featherfolk, seen from the light brown-colored wings jutting out from her back. Her gaze was focused on Petyr with much curiosity. He himself wondered how he survived whatever happened at Iskandar, but now it became clear to him that Feraal had the Ark of Wind in her possession the whole time. And he had seen the ferocity of its power numerous times.

“What’s a human doing here?” the Merman said. “This isn’t a camp for the prisoners of war. Lord Caius muttered something like ‘I sense no harm in this boy’... where do you come from?”

When Petyr answered that he hailed from Arcadia, the girl raised her eyebrows in interest.

“Why would Caius trust an Arcadian?” she asked, eyeing him curiously.

“Maybe because he’s watched me fight and kill men from my own nation. I’m an Imperial fugitive so I’ve come to join the battle on this side. In reality, though, I just want this all to stop.”

The Merman chuckled and shook his hood off his head. He had a bluish skin and the sides of his face were lined with blue-greenish scales reminiscent of the ocean, forming a unique crown on his forehead. When he smiled, he had a set of menacing tooth, almost resembling jaws, but otherwise he appeared more human than many of the other Merfolk he had seen; mostly in books and paintings. He couldn’t really tell, but he seemed to be in his mid-twenties.
“Don’t be so naive, boy. War is necessary for the survival of the world. Survival of the species. We demi-humans understand that better because you humans seem to have forgotten the most fundamental laws of nature,” he laughed.

“Yeah, you do have a point. But still, there must be someone who stops it. You know, we can still stop it with a quick, swift and decisive victory over Arcadia,” Petyr replied. “So, what brings you guys here?”

“Looting,” the girl replied. “You see, we were looting Iskandar when all that hell went on over there. Almost made off with so much stuff, but those *Bleep* soldiers caught us. It’s a shame, really. The city is almost nothing now. We could have taken everything before it became the ruins we have now,” she pouted in disappointment.

“Boy, I like you. You’re a brave one. No boy crosses the Trench and fells their own men on foreign land like that,” the Merman replied. “We should be out of here soon. The High Council plans to pardon us and the Lord seems intent on letting you out. Fancy coming to Tsengar with us afterwards?”

“But I’m a human.”

“We don’t give a *Bleep*. You’re right - I do want to end this war. No matter the outcome. You don’t seem to mind crushing your own nation, so human or not, it seems like you could be a bit of help,” he replied rather assuringly. Petyr hesitated, still unsure of his course of actions now that he was far in Hellios land and unsure of whom to follow. “If it’s that hard for you to make a decision, for now, at least, we should make acquaintances. I’m Istvan, and this is Flavia,” he said, pointing to the Featherfolk. She gave a warm smile towards Petyr.

He smiled back and gave Istvan a slight nod. He didn’t know what to do in this country, but now it seemed that he had some kind of direction. With Iskandar destroyed, Hellios now lacked a natural buffer for an Arcadian invasion and it is only a matter of time before they overpower the Merfolk forces on the Trench and invade further into the mainland. He thought about Lyria and Fernis back in Ashval; so little time had passed, yet so much had happened. He truly felt like he was on the Hellios side of the war now. And no matter what it takes, he will do whatever it takes to end the war from this direction.

“I’m Petyr, nice to know you two.”
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Ultima on June 18, 2012, 09:55:34 PM
OoC: As powerful as I make Feraal seem in this post, there will be consequences to balance this. Don’t worry.

An explosion echoed from the far side of the building followed by the clash of steel upon steel. The Arcadians were obviously playing for keeps this time around. Feraal forced herself to sit up and, all of a sudden, felt completely rejuvenated. Was this magic from the Ark? Was it one of the benefits to being the current owner? “I can fight.”

Caius sized her up with his piercing black eyes and nodded. “This building is not terribly defensible,” he said as the pair marched to the area of the explosion. “If they have brought more than a platoon of soldiers then we will need a quick exit.”

“A sigil?” Feraal asked.

Roaring at two, rather frightened, featherfolk mages, Caius ordered them to prepare a sigil at the rear of the building. Dust began to cloud Feraal and Caius’ vision as they neared the battle. The battle was mostly taking place outside. A hole blown in the wall of a locked cell exposed the sights and sounds of magic, fighting and death.

Feraal exhaled a feral hiss and shot a flurry of arrows at the nearest three Arcadians. They had been torturing and taunting a young Sparrow, an aged Merman and... “Petyr!” She flipped out one of her daggers and sliced off his manacles. “Are you okay?”

“I’ve been worse,” he muttered, “Not by much though... What’s going on?”

Caius stepped forward. “The Arcadians don’t give up easily,” he said, “Can you fight?”

“My left arm is completely useless,” Petyr replied, “I’d be a distraction at best in a real fight.”

“Protect your two companions then. Come Feraal!”

The great bear and lithe feline leapt through the hole in the wall and were greeted by three wolverines barely surviving against a troop of twenty or more humans. The grass around them was stained with blood and the bodies of a dozen, dead, feline and wolf corpses littered the ground.

Feraal felt her fury rising. The jewel on her chest began to glow once more as a cyclone of wind enveloped her body. While weaker than that displayed in Iskandar, it had the potential to cause devastating collateral damage.

“Peace child,” Caius whispered, “Control your emotions. There have been far too many deaths in recent days.”

The assassin was having none of it. She launched three darts at the Arcadians and followed up with four arrows. Focusing a degree of the wind in her control, she propelled them forward so quickly that each projectile exploded with a sonic boom upon impact.

Taken aback by the ferocity of the assault, the Arcadians backed away. A voice then spoke up from behind them. “That’s the one!” it shrieked, “That beast killed my sister!”

Caius stopped anymore potential actions with the loudest roar that Feraal had heard any creature produce. It resounded for miles around and caused many of those with more sensitive hearing to double over in pain. When he finally quietened, Feraal was amazed to find her anger subsided and the Arcadians with their weapons lowered.

“Give us the cat Caius and this need go no further,” the woman snarled. “My sister deserves justice.”

“Your sister died protecting a fine and honourable General,” Caius replied, “I have the utmost respect for her. But this is war. There will always be casualties. You have the numbers in this fight, but provoke my companion and she could, potentially, kill us all with her anger.”

Feraal was unused to being protected. Growing up as an assassin and sex slave had that effect. Suddenly, she was the strongest fighter in Hellios and could rival the majority of Arcadia. The world was certainly twisted.

“I will have my vengeance Caius,” the woman seethed, “One day you won’t be there to protect her.”

“She doesn’t need protecting. Killing seven of your men in less than thirty seconds ought to prove that. Return to your camp and hope that your superior doesn’t behead you for desertion.”

The woman’s face contorted into, if possible, an even more furious expression before she sounded the retreat.

Caius turned around. “We have to go. They will be back with more troops now that they have exposed a weakness.”
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Metal Chocobo on June 19, 2012, 05:50:30 PM
The Simurgh had spun around and flown over the remains of Iskandar. Isaac had ordered this partly out of his interest in the aftermath and partly as a sort of power show. There was an enemy airship over Iskandar.
However, as the ship now flew to the south,  Isaac read through journals, sketched notes on paper and worked with the little resources the ship had stocked. The Arks had destroyed everything, how could golems protect against that? Maybe they could not, maybe the Ark of Earth would hold the secret. It would be a long journey and he had a few more designs to play with. He also had the wisdom of the little paper golem Cilia had found for him.

The paper man watched quietly as Isaac mumbled to himself and constantly reshaped a ball of clay.
"Why do you fight in this war?" It finally asked.

"Why does a golem care? Most of your kind are very single-minded about their purpose."

"I am a journal. My purpose is chronicling everything I see and reporting it to those who ask. I know you build golems for Arcadia, but I do not know why. I cannot record it if I do not know."

Isaac glanced up from his work, "Very well, although I am not sure why you still record things after all this time. " He answered, "I want to study a lost art. There are not many golemancers left and I would like to change that but I need to get better. To get better I need time and resources. Wars get in the way of both. I need it to be over so I can work and I would prefer to be on the winning side when it ends. If I am with the winners I will likely be allowed to continue in peace no matter how strange or dangerous my experiments become since my actions in the war helped Arcadia win. If we lose, I will at worst be killed as a war criminal or golemancy will be made illegal in light of how dangerous it proved."

"And the Ark?"

"Would give me a great advantage or put me at a huge disadvantage, depending on who has it."

The golem was silent again as it stored the information away. After a while it spoke up again, "If you show me a map form this time I may be able to point out differences which will make the Ark easier to spot." It offered.

"No need," Isaac replied, "I already know where the Ark is. In fact..." Isaac seemed to look into the distance for a moment as moved his attention to the golems steering the ship. "Yes, we are almost there now!" Isaac stated as he jumped to his feet.

Moving to the front of the ship, Isaac saw sand stretching off into the distance. The Ark was somewhere under there. All that was left was to find the enchanted artifact hidden somewhere in the desert.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Dragon Lord on June 21, 2012, 03:18:52 PM
Edward limped out of his tent towards the disturbance in the camp, Astal close behind him. As he reached the quartermasters tent he saw a young swordswoman attacking Captain Marciel. The Arcadian officer was defending himself with his shadow magic but wasn’t retaliating. Nearby, another young woman was chanting with her hands clasped in front of her, as if in prayer. A huge magic circle shone at her feet.

“Valeria!” Astal shouted. “What are you doing!?”

Edward glanced briefly at his friend. He knew that Valeria was Astal’s niece and had been assigned a mission to infiltrate Iskander under the cover of the invasion to look for information on the Ark fragments. He was surprised that she had survived. He looked over at the other woman and realised that the magical circle was a Summoning Circle.

The Summoner raised her hands into the air and the circle at her feet began to shine more brightly. A massive shape began to rise out of the circle and shifted into the form of a huge Minotaur. It was wearing black plate armour and carried a flaming battle axe.

“You killed Steeg!” the Summoner screamed. “You killed Dimitri! I’ll make you pay! Taurok, kill him!”

The minotaur charged forward and brought its weapon crashing down towards Marciel. The Shadowmancer dodged out of the way just in time to avoid being cleaved in two but Valeria was waiting for him. She had snuck in behind Marciel while he was distracted by the summoned creature. Moments before she cut through the Arcadian officer, Astal jumped between them and blocked her attack.

“Enough!” Edward roared, stunning everyone into silence. Even the Minotaur stopped moving.

“What on earth is going on!” Astal yelled at his niece.

“This…man,” Valeria spat. “This…monster…killed two of our friends!”

“What?!” Astal exclaimed. “What are you talking about?”

“We were in the city,” the Summoner began, tears flowing down her cheeks. “We’d reached the archives in the city centre and found some information on the Arks. Before we could leave, this man attacked us. He killed Dimitri and Steeg. He tried to kill the rest of us. Leon and Valeria fought him off. Dimitri never stood a chance. Steeg was trying to protect me.”

The Summoner collapsed onto the ground, sobbing and the Minotaur bellowed in rage and once again charged for Marciel. Edward jumped forward and drew Brynhilda. He met the Minotaur’s swing head on and easily parried its attack. He was shocked to find the Ark-sword in his hands since he didn’t remember picking it up but he recovered quickly.

“Enough,” he shouted again. “Control yourself and your creature!”

The Summoner looked up at him, eyes widened in shock. Valeria also backed away from her uncle and Marciel. The entire camp stood silent, staring fearfully at the General and the Ark in his hands. The memory of Iskandar was still fresh in their minds. The Minotaur backed away and Edward turned his attention back to Marciel.

“I think you’d better explain yourself,” Edward growled at the Shadowmancer. “These women were part of a unit under my and General Astal’s personal command and were under taking a special mission. They believe you attacked them, killed two of their comrades and tried to kill the others.”

“It’s true,” Marciel replied blandly. If possible, the entire camp went even more deadly silent.

“Excuse me?” Edward asked in a cold voice.

“I did in fact kill two humans in the Hellios city Iskander,” Marciel said. “My continuing orders from the emperor are to search for and retrieve the fragments of the Ark of Infinity and any information pertaining to them. I had no idea that they were under your orders.”

“You were in an enemy city which was under attack,” Astal growled. “You saw a team of human soldiers and it never occurred to you that they were working for us?”

“The Arks are far too important to the war,” Marciel replied. “Look what happened when two Arks collided. Imagine what would happen if the demi-humans found another, tipped the balance of power in their favour. I couldn’t take that risk. Even if they were working for the Lord General, my abilities allow me to move much faster undetected. The information was more likely to reach the right hands if I took them.”

“You *Bleep*!” Valeria snarled.

“Quiet!” Edward snapped, before turning his attention back to Marciel. “You’re going to have to answer for this Marciel. You interfered with an official mission and killed two Arcadian soldiers without just cause.”

“I’m afraid I have to decline, General Vanhiem,” Marciel sighed. Everyone tensed and Edward tightened his grip on the Ark.

“You’re refusing an order from the Lord General of the Arcadian Imperial Army?” Astal asked.

“I have here a set of orders signed by the Emperor himself,” Marceil said, walking calmly over to Edward and handed him a scroll. Edward signalled and a nearby scribe stepped forward, took the scroll and quickly read.

“By order of Marcus Alessandro Arturius IV, Emperor of the Grand Arcadian Empire,” the scribe began. “Nathaniel Marciel is hereby promoted to the rank of Colonel. He is charged with locating and retrieving the Fragments of the Ark of Infinity by any and all means he deems necessary. He is not to be obstructed in any way in carrying out these duties.”

“The scroll I retrieved from Iskander did point to the location of an Ark fragment,” Colonel Marciel said. “Unfortunately it led to the Ark of Wind which, as we now know, is held by the enemy. The Emperor felt that more direct measures were needed to prevent a repeat of this.”

“You can’t just let him walk away,” Valeria said to her uncle.

“I’m sorry Valeria, Elise,” Astal said. “But even General Vanhiem can’t act against an order given by the Emperor.”

“If that is everything, I must be going,” Marceil smiled. Shadows began to rise from the ground, pulling him into their depths. “General Vanhiem, General Astal, I bid you good day.”

The Shadowmancer vanished as Valeria dropped to her knees and screamed at the sky. Edward sheathed Brynhilda and moved over to the Summoner, Elise.

Come on child,” he sighed, pulling her to her feet. “Bart, bring your niece. We’ll go to my tent and you can tell me everything that’s happened.



Leon opened his eyes to find a young wolf beastman girl laying a tray of food on the table. He pulled himself upright and quietly studied the young girl. She had pale brown and white fur and her eyes were a bright blue. She wore simple work clothes that seemed to be covered in soot. As she turned around she realised that Leon was awake and watching her. She let out a small squeak and dashed from the room.

“Wait!” Leon called. “I’m not going to hurt you!”

He groaned as he tried to get up, still stiff from his lingering injuries. He leaned heavily against the bedpost as he moved towards the door. He noticed a couple of long wooden sticks nearby and picked one up to use a walking stick. As he emerged from the wooden house he looked around. There were half a dozen buildings in the forest clearing. His attention was drawn by one of the only two stone buildings because it had a chimney that was belching thick black smoke. He hobbled over towards it and began to hear the sounds on metal striking metal.

“A forge?” Leon wondered aloud.

He reached the thick wooden door and pushed it open. He was immediately hit by a wall of heat and a gruff voice shouted from inside.

“Shut the bloody door!” the voice shouted.

“Sorry,” Leon said, hastily closing the door. The striking sounds continued for several minutes, followed by a hiss of steam. After another few moments the door opened to reveal another wolf beastman. He was tall and muscled, with slightly singed black fur. He wore a thick blacksmiths apron and thick leather gloves.

“Well then,” the wolf said. “You’re finally up then, although not by much it seems.”

Leon glanced down at his make-shift walking stick while the beastman chuckled.

“My names Torran,” the wolf said. “This is my home. The little girl you probably saw is my granddaughter, Kaya. What’s your name?”

“Leon,” the young human said warily.

“Leon huh?” Torran said, looking him over. “Well then, Leon. You’re going to be staying here for a while until you get your strength back. After that, it seems Volsten has some job for you.”

“Volsten?” Leon asked.

“The Beastman who brought you here,” Torran replied. “The wolf in the grey cloak.”

“Wait a minute,” Leon gasped. “Grey cloak. Does that mean he was from the Order of the Grey?”

“Yup,” Torran laughed, walking over to a water trough to wash his hands. “He appeared out of nowhere a few days ago, carrying you in his arms. He said he needed somewhere for this human to recover, that you had a job to do. Normally I’d have nothing to do with humans but I owe Voslten a few favours so I couldn’t refuse.”

“What kind of job?” Leon asked.

“No idea,” Torran answered. “Didn’t ask.”

Quite suddenly, Leon’s world began to spin and he fell to the ground. Torran quickly helped him up and started guiding him back to the wooden house.

“Easy now,” the wolf said. “You still need to rest. Get some more sleep and eat some food. We’ll talk more later.”



Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: MegaFun on June 25, 2012, 05:24:56 PM
Petyr heard Lord Caius’s call of return in the distance and their footsteps as they retreated back to the camp. He wondered how many Arcadians there were. He wondered if they would tell him where he is. Where he could find the scum who ruined his life.

But he figured he was in no position to do so at the moment. As far as he was concerned, his left arm was damaged and he couldn’t even walk properly. Other Arcadian soldiers had breached the line past Caius; probably soldiers who decided to flank attack the camp, and his new companions were now warding them off. Flavia skillfully took to the skies and fired a storm of arrows at the enemies from among the tall trees, while Istvan handled them from the ground, striking soldiers down with his menacing, blue-bladed greatsword. He could immediately tell that they were very skilled fighters, and this made him all the more curious as to what he could gain from following them. The prospect of Tsengar seemed more and more interesting. Of course, he still felt that he had to make some ends meet with regards to Feraal, but he thought that as long as they were on the same side of the war they’ll mutually benefit each other. Moreover, she had just become one of the strongest and most valuable fighters in the Hellios army.

Petyr gritted his teeth in frustration. She had gained the power to destroy a decent-sized Arcadian battalion while he became useless with a very real possibility of turning into collateral damage. He moved his left arm again, only to be greeted with the same sharp, stabbing pain coming from his upper chest. The best he could do was to call up a wind barrier, although that too was weak on his left side because the whole left side of his body was crippled at that moment. Any sort of slashing movement would be near impossible as the slightest movement would tear his left arm to shreds with the pain. He sighed. All he could use was his magic and it he wasn’t even very proficient at it. He was jealous of Feraal at the moment, but it made him realize that he needed to be stronger.

“Petyr!” Istvan shouted, noticing his pitiful struggle. “Don’t come. Get the hell away and run.”

“Nah,” Petyr hissed under his breath. He sprinted into the woods, just below where Flavia was, all the while ignoring the throbbing pain in his legs. Hiding behind a large trunk, he drew a large bunch of arrows at once and coated them with the vials he carried. He made sure to use the most potent one - Heartshaker, it was called - which could kill in seconds even through a superficial cut. Without the ability to use his bow, he had to crudely propel these arrows with his magic, and as such they had to be able to kill - and quickly, for that matter.

Flavia observed what he was doing and smiled in a pleasantly surprised manner. She whistled towards Petyr and gave him a wink as he was about to unleash his poisoned arrows at the Arcadians. She hovered erratically and began to fire arrows in random directions as a diversion, only for the soldiers to be greeted by Petyr’s arrows. He had a hard time guiding them with power and precision with just concentrated blast of winds from his palm, but he mustered all of his magical force onto that palm when he fired the arrows. Fortunately, most of the arrows hit home and the soldiers began to fall like a pile of cockroaches. Flavia resumed her attacks, finishing off the rest of the humans with her superior marksmanship, and the last soldier collapsed as Petyr’s arrow dug into his neck. Flavia landed next to him and smiled.

“Impressive. I didn’t know you knew wind magic. Did you learn it from the cat?” she asked.

He shook his head. “No, she has an Ark. I learned this... from someone. I do want to get better though,” he said. “A lot better.

“I know someone just for that. I used to be his student before I realized shooting was just my thing,” she sighed.

“It’s not really my passion either, but anything helps.”

He suddenly felt a light smack at the back of his head and turned around, seeing the blue face behind him.

“I told you to run, but now I have higher expectations of a cripple,” Istvan chuckled.

“Oh, shut up. Where are we headed now?”

“I say we immediately head to Tsengar, unless you want to say goodbye to that cat friend of yours. Can you walk?”

Petyr thought about it for a moment, but he was sure no one would be too bothered if he left suddenly. At least, he hoped Caius wouldn’t be too bothered with a human roaming around the country. Besides, Feraal was now needed more than ever. He’ll have to recover and adapt to Hellios before he could fight alongside these two, and Istvan and Flavia seemed to be just the kind of people he needed. At last, he nodded. He whimpered after realizing that walking was probably the most he could do.

“Hey, one question,” Petyr said as he walked with them. “Who exactly are you guys?”

“I s’pose you could say we’re mercenaries...” Flavia replied, but her tone obviously hid something. After he frowned at her suspiciously, she finally gave in to the pressure. “Okay, well, we’re defects. We defected the army. Caius doesn’t know, so shush.”

“Isn’t that punishable by death?”

“Yeah, technically, unless your commander decides to be nice and let you go because he understood the reason. Hence, we live.”

“Istvan, I thought you said that war was survival. Why would you stop it then?” Petyr asked, after he remembered that this particular thing had been tugging at his mind ever since the skirmish with the Arcadians began.

“That’s a dumb question,” he replied sharply. “Well, usually, it is. But yes, war is survival. The victor lives on by devouring and feeding on the vanquished. However, such is not the case with this war. The Arks hold terrible power which we do not know how to control. The warring factions are growing hungry and they want their Arks. They want to completely and utterly vanquish the other. But that’s not how it will turn out. The Arks will tear Era apart and rend both countries to the ground... This war is not the survival of the fittest... It is collective suicide in ignorance, and I intend to put an end to it.”
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: rsslayersr on June 28, 2012, 11:58:34 PM
"For the last time child, shut your mouth!" Tobias glared at the carefree dove. She glanced back with a smirk on her face.
"No, you shush." Erica was enjoying the pestered Tobias.
"For god's sake, will both of you just..". Alice merged in, the irritation became her too much. "We haven't had any sleep since yesterday, my head is aching and I have the two most annoying characters accompanying me.. Where does the terror stop!" Erica shook her head, Tobias just kept his mouth shut.
They were gliding through the empty sky, daylight emerged a few hours ago. This little trip was finally ending. Still, the obstacles are yet to show themselves. Having Erica with them wouldn't make it anymore easy, but somewhere deep inside, Alice felt like her assassinlike skills could be useful. The moment of disbelieve went by quickly, she regained her senses. She was just a child, a horribly scarred child for that matter, a killer.. Something needed to happen, hope was put into the High Council. They will be enlightened about the situation, the Ark of Fire, the war. Most important was for Erica to be escorted home, hopefully sooner than later.

A small glimpse of the Trench was visible near the horizon for Alice. Were they already at this height? It must've been, as clouds were far below them. Featherfolk were used to the icy winds of the high world, it was the lack of air they feared. The Thrench was glowing blue, from this angle it made her think it was like the end of the world, but beyond was the continent of humans. Alice always had dreamt of its sight for a long time, the history behind it all was for her.. overwhelming.
"Done moaning? Good, let's decent."
The two competitive minds grumbled a bit further until they started to give their attention to the last seemingly sane person left, Alice. "Air is getting thin, I do believe we've covered enough ground, and I would kill to see solid ground. Believe me, I will.".

The climb down was frictionless. Clouds went by at a fast rate and the green forest below began to show itself. In the near distance was a great structure. Its grey colour was mixed with the green vines. This was the forest of the High Council.

"We should land, Alice." Tobias suggested. "Who knows what they might think of us, being rude and just land before their doorstep."
Alice nodded and looked at Erica, who was just acting bored, maybe even tired.
The three landed swiftly, probably a fifteen minute walk away from reaching the Council. Alice stretched her arms, her head was banging from flying the whole night. "We're all okay?" Tobias asked. "Yeah, yeah, we're all good around here. Start walking already!" Erica stepped forward, but was stopped by Alice her arm. "Again, you shouldn't act like you're part of this." Alice removed her arm and looked deep into her eyes. They revealed nothing more than an innocent child seeking for adventure. The chills she got from when talking to her at their homes, was it the darkness leaking out? What was she thinking, a kid, darkness, two things that couldn't and shouldn't be combined. But she was already sixteen, an age, old enough for combat training. It couldn't be it. This age, skills like that.. Erica smiled. "Sure, I know. Don't worry, I just want to have a real bed for tonight..". Her eyes sparkled.


"Who goes there?" A low voice shouted. It was a guard, scouting the area for fiends. It was a Demi-Human of bear kind. "Guests!" Tobias shouted back. "Featherfolk from South, we were send or invited by the Council. Doesn't change the fact, may we pass?"
The guard made his distance lesser to the group, signing something in the air. Alice looked up, she saw a few archers, lowering their bows. Alice was quite terrified, she lowered her guard too much, was too distracted. Enough to make her forget to scan the surroundings.

"Ah, you're the dove we've been expecting." The guard said. "Introduction isn't needed, time is worth more than you would think."

"A bear huh? Isn't it.. burning hot beneath that fur?" Erica watched the guard with big eyes.

"Don't mind her, she's a bit.. well.." Tobias said.

"In any case, thank you for welcoming us." Alice smiled as she thanked the guard.

"You're quite welcome for that. I will escort you to the great tower, the place where you should be expected."

Alice nodded and followed without hesitation. The woods became more thin as they started to get near to their destination. I was crowded with soldiers, guards and others. "It's a precaution." The guard said. "After our leader has ordered the protection of the Trench, after Iskandar.. we doubled our defenses." The words went through her mind. "Iskandar, what happened in my absence?" Alice thought to herself. Did it mean the humans had breached into our lands? It meant nothing more than trouble.
"Here you are." The guard said. They were in front of the entrance. The same feeling of excitement went through her as when she heard she was leaving. She thanked the bear nicely and went inside. Tobias and Erica followed her, looking around like they were sightseeing. Banners were filling the main room of this building.

There were many buildings, even a small town in the middle. Stairs were in front of her, but her eyes were looking at something different. People slowly walked around, animal and Featherfolk. In the middle of the slow chaos, leaning into a pillar was a man that wore a grey robe. His eyes covered by a hood, he seemed old.. and human. A human here on Helios grounds? Alice looked closer, but when she did, he was already gone.
Was it a human? And why grey? Alice was tired, wanted to stop thinking about it. She probably thought it was her imagination, lucid dreaming or another kind of hallucination. "Erica, stay here. The business we're going to be discussion up there won't be of any interest to you" she said kindly.


"The Order of the Grey, such a silly story to tell to your children. But him.. is it true?" Went through Alice her head. "Sleep is what I need.."
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Dragon Lord on June 29, 2012, 07:25:58 PM
Edward stood on a hillside, watching as solders and engineers set up defences on the far side of Iskandar. They had to move quickly to secure their beach-head for the invasion of Hellios. They were still having problems traversing the Trench by sea because of the Merfolk. However, the sheer number of ships being sent meant that for every one the Merfolk managed to sink, two more reached Iskandar. Edward had also mobilised the Imperial Air Fleet and now huge airships brought critical supplies across the Trench in a fraction of the time it would take by sea.

Looking down at the workers, Edward noticed there were very few Golems among them. They had lost more than half of the Golems provided when Iskandar was destroyed and the rest were being used to protect the ships crossing from Arcadia. The Golemancer Isaac had vanished, many believed that he’d been killed in the blast that destroyed the city. Edward thought that unlikely. He’d always felt Isaac had his own agenda and was off somewhere working towards it.

A figure beside him signalled for his attention. Valeria Astal and the young healer Elise stood just a few steps behind him.

“Lord Vanhiem,” Valeria said. “Uncle Bartholomew is coming.”

Edward considered the two young women for a moment. After the incident with Colonel Marciel they had named themselves his new aides. Valeria had become the General’s new bodyguard. After what happened to Senna, Edward had mixed feelings about placing someone else in that position. Unfortunately, because of his weakened condition, it had proven necessary. Valeria had proven herself to be an excellent guard. She was quiet, attentive and never let down her guard. Elise, on the other hand, had become Edwards personal Healer. Thanks to her efforts, the injuries he’d received during the battle had almost healed.

"Bart,” Edward nodded as the General reached them at the top of the hill, slightly out of breath.

“What is it with you and hills,” Astal groaned.

“It’s the swordsman in me,” Edward smiled. “I always like having the high ground.”

“The scouts have reported back,” Astal said. “There is no sign of any substantial Hellios forces within 20 miles of Iskandar. We should start moving troops south and west immediately before the demi-humans have a chance to regroup.”

“You’re right,” Edward nodded. “We should have enough reinforcements by now to protect the beach-head and push further into Hellios. Give the order. Anything else?”

 “Yeah,” Astal sighed. “General Verde is on his way back, he’ll arrive with the next airship.”

“He recovered already?” Edward asked. “His arm was cut clean off.”

“Apparently he ordered the Healers to fit a prosthetic as quickly as they could so he could get back out to the battlefield,” Astal replied.

“Brilliant,” Edward sighed. “Now I have to deal with that lunatic.”

“That’s why we get paid the General money,” Astal smiled, putting his arm round his friends shoulder, pulling him back towards the camp.



Leon was well on his way to recovery. Despite the fact that they were at war, he couldn’t fault the demi-human’s cooking. Between that and frequent rests he felt his strength returning quickly. Unfortunately, while his physical strength returned, his magical ability didn’t. Every day he tried to each down inside himself to where his magic had been all his life but found nothing. Eventually he had to admit that his magic was gone, just as Volsten said.

One morning he wandered outside to see a beastman he didn’t recognise out in the clearing. Like the others here, he was a wolf beastman. His fur war black with white flecks and his eyes were the same blue as Torran and Kaya. He carred a long, thin sword with a rounded guard and an ever so slightly curved edge, a katana.

The stranger was performing a series of martial forms, striking at imaginary enemies. His movements moved seamlessly from fluid and graceful to fast and decisive. It was like a dance. Leon was mesmerised by the forms and for a while forgot about his lost magic. He remembered the martial forms he had learned as well as his magic and realised that all wasn’t lost.

“Father!” Kaya shouted from the house, shocking Leon out of his daze. The stranger turned and smiled as the young wolf girl leapt into his arms.

“That’s my son, Ronin” Torran said from behind Leon. “He also happens to be a master swordsman, especially with the katana. He’s been stationed on the far western edge of the Trench.”

Torran wandered over to his son and granddaughter. Leon continued to watch the family laughing together as the girl babbled to her father, happier than he’d ever seen her. It was just like a human family. It was that moment when Leon realised how truly pointless the war was. And after what had happened at Iskandar, he knew that it had to end.

He strode purposefully towards the three beastmen. Kaya shrunk behind her father, who put his hand on the hilt of his sword. Just as he reached them, Leon knelt down and lowered his head.

“Please,” he said firmly. “I need your help. I want to bring an end to this war, to prevent a repeat of Iskandar. But I don’t have my magic anymore. Without it, I’m not strong enough.”

“What exactly do you want?” Ronin asked quietly.

“I want to learn how to fight with a sword,” Leon answered, looking directly into the beastman’s eyes.

A long moment passed while total silence descended over the clearing. The human and the beastman continued to meet each other’s stare until finally, the beastman sighed.

“That’s why I’m here,” he said.



Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: KainCrow on June 30, 2012, 08:18:47 AM
Twitch. Twitch.
Vulpe gluped, sneaking glance every once in a while as he followed Sinkair into the Barrack. However, Sinkair paid no notice to his nervousness and strode through the soldiers without care (not even bothering to remove her hood, in fact,), and clapped aloud when she found the target.

"Ah, Captain Kaeda! Finally, the person I was searching for!"
"Oi, oi, oi! Careful there! That box should be-.. Eh? Sinkair? What are you doing here?"
"I went to Iskandar for information you asked for- and saw that little kitty with the High Lord Caius," Sinkair tilted her head, sounding little unsure, "When I arrived, the city was already under assault- though, I saw rather interesting things from afar.. I thought I should inform your superiors, or at least, you."

Kaeda frowned, glancing at the obvious bounty hunter behind Sinkair- and after a bark-like snort, answered.

"Well, it's your opinion, and you are one of the most trustworthy contacts I have.. Currently this barrack is overflooded with survivors from the Iskandar. It's even harder to find a proper order or chain of command.. You might as well just head to High Lord Caius, he knows your name."
"He does?" Sinkair blinked, her eyes widening under the robe, "Why would he even know my name? I just like shinies.. It's not like I have done something much...?"
"Sinkair.." Captain Kaeda smiled uneasily, "There's more people you have heard of you than those who doesn't know your name, although they may not recognise you at first sight. You are one of the best treasure hunters, not to mention your rather, ah, unique obssession of shiny things. And who is your friend?"
"...He is annoying red fox," Sinkair slightly whined, pouting, "Just followed me again.. One of the good information contact, though."

Kaeda chuckled as Sinkair whined- well, Sinkair always lit up the mood, however unintentional- or was it intentional?- it was. You never know with her. And with a slight nod, Kaeda offered his hand to the bounty hunter, who's ears were still twitching at the slightest noise in the noisy barrack.

"Kaeda Anima, Captain of Hellios-"
"...Vulpe Vermilus, one of the Treasure and Bounty Hunter Guild's official of North Region in Hellios."
"Well, that done," Sinkair clapped her hand, smiling cutely, "Captain Kaeda, should I go look for High Lord Caius? Considering how much power that insane kitty used, I am guessing she is somewhere at infirmary- or similar.. If he is still in this camp, that is."
"Well, I am not sure, but he must be still with that cat-girl," Kaeda grunted, sighing, "and the human she brought with her.. I think one of you probably know him- something about him being an imperial refuge?"
"There's too many of them," Vulpe answered, slightly relaxing as the conversation continued, "backstreets are all the same- the human have their share of defects and runaways, just as we do- although humans tend to force a bit, while us- generally go along with our instincts. Kinda like pack mentality- if Alpha orders it, we generally do it- less defects, too- but humans don't have that instinct- or too less, in general. But strong ones always stands out anywhere.. If he managed to cross the Trench, then we probably know who he is.. Probably, unless he was hiding too well.."

Vulpe shrugged- it was always possible. But he kept the fact that if the person in question hid too well, that meant that at least his name- or alias- would be well known among them- and Sinkair didn't bother to comment as well. And after a few more words, Kaeda finally nodded and decided.

"Well, wait for a while, hm? I will ask around and find out where High Lord Caius is- for now, you can stay here- probably until tomorrow, in any case. Hey, you there! Help these two to get a place to sleep- they will be meeting High Lord Caius- or at least someone in High Council tomorrow, if I can't manage to report to him."
"Yes, Captain Anima!"


OoC: Ultima, where's Caius anyway? (is confused whether he is at camp or already left the camp)
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: jedakiller on July 01, 2012, 11:05:51 AM
The two companions arrived at Darhin's home. It looked neglected, but you didn't expect more from such a lone wolf. They opened inside the house, Collin immediatly let himself fall down on the couch. Darhin left him alone, walked into his own room. He closed the curtains and started to put his armor off.
"A dangerous place.." he thought to himself.

"Collin! we leave in ten." He shouted.

He opened his closet grabbed a dark green duster. The long cloak was worn, not appealing to the eye. He equiped his new-bought armour and swong the cloak over him. His sword would be a annoyance on his back, so he reattached his sheat to his belt. He wasn't used to the weight, good thing he was good in balance. The sun was high in the sky.

"Now, Collin." he said

The wolf cub quickely jumped on his feet and walked back to Darhin. He already wore his new armour.

"Why leave now? I could use the rest.." he said.

"Really? Oh Collin, you know what you got yourself into, didn't you? I don't really care about the arguments you bring." Darhin replied.

Collin was tired. "Could you at least tell me where we're going to?" Darhin looked at him. "You'll need this." He handed over a bow. "Got it as a gift, never good at it using it though." The bow was nothing special, dark brown. Collin took it, he was greatful. "And this." He also handed over a quiver they took from the bandits. "Now, ready to go?"

They brought themselves outside, the sun burned. A glympse of light caught Darhin's eyes, like a flash.

In the distance he saw a faint string of smoke, all across the great river between him and the Helios land.
Now Collin saw it too "Do you see that?" 
Darhin said nothing, he just watched.

"Come on boy, there's nothing left in Arcadia for us.".
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Metal Chocobo on July 03, 2012, 01:49:50 PM
The hull of the ship groaned as Isaac looked up at the floor above him. Clearly he was a terrible pilot. Nothing but miles of sand in every direction and he somehow managed to impale the Simurgh on a twelve foot wide stone spire.
There was another disturbing groan as gravity pulled at the ship, drawing it further down the spire and rending it further in half.
Isaac picked himself up and made his way carefully across the roof. He had to get off the airship, it was entirely possible that this spire had come from the Ark of Earth which would certainly explain the crash. It would not, however, explain why the airship was upside down.
One final, colossal roar of metal against stone and the spire was through and the Simurgh went into a quivering freefall towards the sand below.
Isaac's staff stretched out to embed itself in the floor above and he suspended himself in the air, hoping the clay and some magic might slow his fall enough to not entirely kill him.

This Simurgh kicked up a miniature sandstorm as it finally came to rest in the dunes and the desert grew silent, the ship's engines dead.
A small, metallic thudding began to echo over the sand ending with a final clattering as Isaac forced a hatch open and tumbled gracelessly into the sand.
"Ow," Isaac coughed into the ground as he tried to force himself up again. He was alone in a desert, his ship ruined and his golems reduced to smears of clay. The situation could not be much worse. He made one final, desperate attempt to lift himself and flopped back down again, his energy gone as a shadow fell over him.
Fueled only by a sudden feeling of defiance, Isaac sighed and rolled over to stare at the Beastmen who had found him.
It wasn't Beastmen. In fact, it wasn't even really alive.
Looming over Isaac's defeated form was a set of intricate and ornate golden armour, an ethereal gleam emanating form where eyes should be. A golem. A very well made golem. Whatever had knecked him out the sky with the earth spire most likely had the Ark and likely several more very well built golems.
Things were worse, after all. A lot worse.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Ultima on July 06, 2012, 03:11:23 PM
Watching the backs of the Imperial troops march towards the horizon, Caius rounded on Feraal. "You have no possible comprehension of what that object around your neck could do to you!" he growled, "It could just as easily kill us as help us!"

Feraal snorted. "If you want my help then don't order me around," she hissed, "The last person who did that ended up with a poisoned dart through his heart."

Caius kept his expression neutral but inside, he was burning with a dozen different ideas ranging from imprisoning Feraal to outright executing her. "I should really get her back to the council and decide then." he thought at last. "We need to get back to the council. They will want to speak to you. Should we bring your human friend along?"

"He wanted to escape the Empire. I helped that happen. My obligation is paid. If he wishes to find me again he knows where to look."

Nodding, Caius and Feraal set off towards the sigil. They had only walked a couple of paces before the Ark began to glow.

"I thought I told you to control yourself!" roared Caius.

"It's not me," Feraal said in a genuinely scared tone, "I feel... I feel another presence. Another Ark has been activated. It isn't the fire Ark either."

"Gods help us..." Caius growled.

OoC: Caius and Feraal will be at the Hellios council arguing about how to use the Ark.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: rsslayersr on July 14, 2012, 10:25:04 PM
"What?". The shout echoed through the hall. Even Erica could hear it from down there. Alice was enraged by the fact she came here for nothing. That was the feeling she got. The few Councilmen said that she should rest, since the one who would explain her cause, wasn't here.  She stomped out. Tobias tried to calm her down, but she wouldn't accept it.
"I'm eager, I really am." she said. "Eager enough to get mad about the simple thing as to wait for one extra day, or week." Tobias smiled. "Alice, you shouldn't explode in front of those men. They are our superiors." Alice looked skeptical. "Superiors? We don't even know what they have in mind with us, me. All we know is that the Ark of Fire is found. Anything else.."
She glanced through the empty space where Erica nervously was waiting for them to return.

The name of the Councilors she did not remember. Frankly, she didn't care. Even the trouble with Erica couldn't unbalance her burning affection towards the Arks. This feeling came from nowhere, but it has been itching since the weird encounter with the man in grey. The link seems weak, but noticeable for the one who wants. The rambling in her head faded away after Tobias started to talk again.

"The Erica situation.."

Alice answered firmly. "Yes.. I was there."

Erica invaded in the conversation. "Ah, the look on your faces predict nothing good, for you."

Tobias grinded his teeth. "Little bugger you are, little lucky bugger."

"They couldn't let people of their duties to escort you home, and the message for someone to pick you up won't reach in a few days."

Erica's smile grew bigger. "Fate, it seems."

The words were filling the head of Alice.

"More like madness.." Tobias grumbled.

"We can't do anything else for now, but rest, fill our stomachs. They said our rooms will be in the west towers."
Alice wasn't keen on the idea of resting. The timing made her feel uneasy, but she knew she wouldn't have any other choice, for now.
"It's still day, stocking up with food wouldn't be such a bother for us. Town in the center, also a marked I presume." Tobias said. He looked at Alice her pale face. She was looking downwards. "Money?" she said silently. "Never left without it. I also believe Erica had a pouch full of coins.

"Good.. Listen, I'll be going somewhere else for the rest of the day, without you two. Is it okay if we meet up by the tower in the afternoon?"

Tobias nodded. "Trust isn't an issue with me, my lady."

"Titles are, for me. So stop the formal speech with me, that's my thing." Alice smirked.

Erica was giggling at the two, but she stopped after Tobias hit her behind her head. An outburst in the form as a small stomp on his foot came from her.
"Tobias, stop it!"
He placed his hand on the top of her head. Erica looked deeply in his eyes, the sparkle was gone. "I can kill. So please, lift up your hand, because your faith will be worse than you imagined."
Tobias quickly did what she said, and Erica smiled again. "So, shall we go?"

"Weird girl.." He thought.

OoC: I have created an *wark* of a filler.. sorry. Couldn't get myself to progress the plot.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Metal Chocobo on July 17, 2012, 02:13:11 PM
Isaac was dragged unceremoniously into a cave and down beneath the desert. Resisting the golem did not seem a wise plan, weak as he was and running away from it would not have worked even if he was uninjured; too much sand. The rough slope became smoother over time and then suddenly sharp and as the floor became stairs and after a long, uninterrupted and silent journey, Isaac was thrown into a small room and the door was slammed shut behind him.

Isaac chose to lie on the floor for a while, lifting himself to examine the cell seemed a waste of the little energy he could spare. The stone beneath him was smooth, a properly worked and maintained floor. Was this some kind of ruin? Village? City? Did the Beastmen have something hidden out here? Surely if they had golemancers gifted enough to build the golem that dragged him here they would have used them at Iskandar. Maybe they had just found one and he was out here for training or to build the army in secret.

The cold floor was not comfortable and eventually Isaac had to raise himself to find somewhere to rest. He was greeted by a sight he had not anticipated. The room contained an old wooden table and comfortable looking chairs and a tall, dark-skinned woman watched him with curiosity from a chair on the opposite side.

"Cilia?" Isaac asked, his voice dry and raspy from all the sand.

The woman looked surprised, "You have met someone like me before?

"Yes, I have a golem who looks like you." Isaac mumbled as he made for the table, noticing the water that had been prepared for him.

"That is even more surprising; alike in looks and nature. To think a technique so complicated survived so long." She replied.

Isaac drank the water, as his mind slowly tried to process what she had just said, "You are a golem?" He asked, his voice suddenly sounding loud in the still air.

"Indeed, all of us here are. King Grolitz felt you flying over us, sensed the golems in your presence and brought you back to the earth to speak with us. It has been a long time since an outsider was here."

"Who are you? This desert is in Hellios, you don't look like one of the Beastmen, is King Grolitz your master?" Isaac felt confused, there was something different about this golem, something that separated her from Cilia.

"I was not a Beastmen, but others of us were. Our King is a powerful enchanter and a golemancer, he saved us from the epidemic. He is not our Master, he was always our King."

"What do you mean 'were'? You weren't always a golem?"

"There was an epidemic. We would all die. Golems can live forever and do not get sick. The King saved us."

Isaac pondered in silence. She was human. Now a golem. Was she free, or did she merely believe she was free?

"You said there were Beastmen here too," Isaac asked, after a long silence, "What about the war? Humans and Demi-Humans hate each other."

The woman smiled and rose to leave, "I'll leave philosophy to the King. You'll find a bedroom and a bathroom through the door behind me. You may wish to rest, I do not believe our summons was all that pleasant an experience for you."

She strode quickly to the door and paused as she opened it, "You asked who I am. My name is Roma. I told you more of our history than I intended because I thought you would understand, clearly the woman you mistook me for is not truly like us. The King may explain better than I can. He shall send for you soon."

The door shut quietly and Isaac was left alone to think. Golems, golemancers, and a bed. Things could have been a lot worse after he crashed an airship into a spire. He should probably have felt lucky, but his bruises really did not agree.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: jedakiller on July 22, 2012, 04:07:29 PM
Two shadows were running through the streets, seemingly in a hurry.

"Hurry! We're almost at the ship" one said.

In front of the two were multiple small air-ships. They climbed on board of the first one that could carry the two and loosened the ropes.

"You know how to fly this thing?" A much smaller shadow said. The two shadows took their hoods of.
"Flying isn't the problem." Darhin said. "Landing is."
"What do you mean with 'Problem'?" Collin voice let of a small glimpse of his unsure look at the situation. He was stuttering all the time and he was holding on to the railing in front him.

"Go and take a rest in your seat." Darhin said. "We won't arrive untill sundown."
Collin did what his master said and seated himself.

_________________________________________________________



It was getting dark and the weren't even near their destination. The last bit of sunlight was shining through the thick forest. It was already since this morning they 'landed'. They've walked for the past hours, with no resistance. Weird for this place. Helios should be on high alert.

"Come on boy! We've still got a long way to go." Darhin grumbled.

"Define long?" the young wolf replied. "Just long trust me. Asking useless question, you are doing." Darhin said.

The night started to fall, the sun went down and in return the moon came up.


Darhin looked up, he felt raindrops, "It's starting to rain."
"Not my fur! Shelter, shelter!" Collin panicked.

"Not getting soaked isn't an option. Follow me. Your question from before is to be answered soon."

They started to speed up their paces. The rain turned into a storm as they continued.
Darhin seemed determined over the direction they went in, leaving the wolf confused, since he spotted several safe shelters around.
"Over here!" Darhin shouted. His soaked brown hair was scattered around his head. Before him was a crevice. It was deep, dark and the walls were slippery. As Collin carelessly walked to him, ground started the disappear from beneath his feet. Darhin tried to grab him by the neck, but the attempt failed and they both fell down, sliding over the steep walls.

Nothing but darkness was shown to Darhin's eyes. He grunted and moaned. How long was he out? "You're alright?" He asked to his companion. "I'm fine" the cub replied. "Good. Well, this didn't plan out as I wanted." Darhin moaned. His arm ached and his head was banging. from relieve he sighted. It seemed like he hadn't broken anything from importance, but his suit was soaked and muddy. The extra weight was noticeable.
A faint light from the surface lightened up a small part of the place, but it wasn't enough to help them navigate. Drops of rain fell on his face. The rain hadn't stopped in the meantime. He crawled up on his feet while trying to wipe of some of the dirt on his shoulders. He looked down and saw a pattern appearing on the floor. "A man made structure. We are at the right place, for sure." He grumbled.


"Master.. Do we have any material for a torch?" Collin said. "Soaked, all of it." Darhin replied, he unsheathed his sword hold it above his head. He looked at the little light that reflected from his sword and took a deep breath.  "Nox omnia!" he said with glory.  The blade started to glow, the deep colour of blue, more like the clearest ocean he has even seen. Darhin swung his sword to examine the many ways to go.They started walking. The place had many corridors. The walls were manmade, but were very weatherworn. Moss and roots filled their sight. Symbols were written on the wall, an ancient language for sure, but not one he knows. "Now we got an even longer way to go" Collin moaned. Darhin kept silent while walking into the first doorway he saw.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: KainCrow on July 25, 2012, 11:41:03 AM
"Hey, Sinkair.. ..Wha'cha think of this war? Ya never said nu'thing," Vulpe questioned, cleaning his dagger while sitting on the ground, his eyes fixed upon the blade, "I ain't know much, but I know ya enough to know that yern't that fond of this."
"Why would I think of this war when I can think of shiny things..?" Sinkair blinked, tilting her head, "Vulpe, you are being an idiot."
"An idiot my *wark*" Vulpe scoffed, looking up from his dagger to see Sinkair who was toying with her own dagger, "Ya'know, I ain't became one of the officers of the Guild for gambling or chasing after vixens.. Stop fooling around. If ya were that air-brain obssessed with shiny and nothing else, yer daggers wouldn't be like that of an assassin's."

Sinkair poked her dagger's blade, looking at dark, non-reflecting surface. It was true.. For someone who was obssessed with shiny things, Sinkair did not wear anything that actually shined a lot, Poking at the dagger that was coated with strong sedative, while fingering another that was coated with deadly poison, Sinkair answered, her voice still childish.

"I am just curious.. ...I think that human general who used the Ark of Fire is a fool, while that little kitty assassin is too naive.. They just don't seem to understand that behind those shiny power that can blind the sight, there's the deadly power that would destroy the users- or holders. I am curious what would happen to them, holding such shiny objects- not just holding, but even using them. I wouldn't go near that shiny things, even though they are really, really bright and shiny, even if people offer me lots and lots of shiny things.. So I want to know. I want to watch. I know myself well, I am not foolish enough to chase such legendary things.. ...The bloodshed has already began, so why can't I watch the aftermath?" Sinkair openly wondered, standing up as she spoke, "I don't care about this war- I don't care about others. I remember nothing of my past- I still have no idea why I am so good in detecting dangers, or how I ended up with such a good fighting skills- or take advantage of things."
"..And wha'cha going to do when ya meet the High Lord Caius? That Captain said that the transportation seal would be ready in an hour," Vulpe spoke, glancing at his blades, "Are you going to show that kind of attitude to him as well? ....Sinkair?"
"Oooooh, Shiny! *giggle*"

Vulpe face-palmed, sighing as Sinkair suddenly pointed outside the room they were staying and dashed out, attempting to chase something that just reflected lights. He really didn't want to *wark* off someone like High Lord Caius- but then, Sinkair was actually a better diplomat than him, despite of her childish attitude and short attention spans (which he still never found out whether she was doing it on purpose or not). It was almost impossible to get a straight answer out of Sinkair..
Even now, Sinkair spoke of her reasons, but she had never spoke of her conclusions, or exactly what she was thinking of the war.. She merely told that she intended to watch, but never spoke of how deep she was planning to get involved. Air-headed or not, she was always slightly an unknown factor.
Sighing as he spotted a mage approaching, Vulpe stood up to chase after Sinkair. 'The seal must have been prepared faster than we were informed.. Or..' Vulpe's ears twitched irritably, realising another possibility, 'she saw that *wark* mage approaching and rushed out just to make my life difficult'

"Uh- Mr. Vulpe? The seal is ready.. Where's your companion?"
"We will be there in 20 minutes- she just went out," Vulpe answered, wincing, "I will track her down and drag her to the seal."

It was time to track an annoying childish rook down... Vulpe just hoped that she would be easy to find, or she wasn't in a mood to play cat-and-mouse..
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Dragon Lord on July 28, 2012, 03:18:06 PM
OoC: Sorry it's been a while since I've posted, I've been dealing with some other stuff and haven't really had the inspiration to write anything.

...

Edward sat in the command tent, rubbing his eyes wearily as General Verde waved his new prosthetic arm in the air and ranted about the demi-humans.

“The battle of Iskandar was a major victory for the Empire,” exclaimed Verde. “But we mustn’t give the vermin the chance to recover. We have them on the run for now but we should advance further into the enemy’s territory before they can muster up a defence. Only by wiping them off the face of Era we claim a final victory in this war.” 

Edward looked around the circular table at the other command officers present and tried to gauge their attitude. Astal sat to his right, a familiar comforting presence. His old friend’s face was set in a frown but Edward recognised a glint in the other general’s eye that made it clear, at least to him, that he wasn’t taking Verde’s comments seriously. Colonel Tiberius sat next to Astal and seemed to be viewing Verde’s statements with visible disdain. Edward allowed himself a quiet chuckle; Tiberius disliked Verde as a matter of principle. The others seated round the table had arrived on the same airship that had returned Verde to the frontier.

Admiral William Dalton sat opposite Edward, wearing in his long white coat, watching Verde with some concern. Dalton was the second in command of the Imperial Navy. Edward had worked with the older man on several occasions and had a great deal of respect for him. He knew from personal experience that the old sailor didn’t enjoy warfare but felt it was his duty to serve the empire to the best of his ability. Fleet Admiral Karlstien, Dalton’s superior, was an incompetent, arrogant swine who just happened to be born into one of the most highly placed families in the empire. Edward was much happier to have Dalton running the supply lines back to the empire.

Seated next to Dalton was Sky Marshal Marianne Volka. One of the youngest seated at the table, Volka was the commander of the Imperial Airship Fleet and the closest in rank to Edward himself. Volka was enthusiastic and intensely loyal to the empire. Edward was concerned by the vicious smile growing on her face as she listened to Verde’s arguments. It seemed that she was firmly on Verde’s side. That could be dangerous.

The third newcomer, Senior Enchanter Jarrick, was a representative of the Arcadian College of Magic. He had come to take command of the mages after their previous leader had died in the destruction of Iskander. He too looked on Verde as if the man was totally insane.

“A victory!” Jarrick shouted. “Thousands dead, hundreds of them our own men, and almost our entire golem force destroyed. You call that a victory? I call it a disaster.”

“The loss of the golems is of no importance,” Verde smirked. “The soldiers we lost died for the sake of the Empire. There are thousands more in this camp and more on the way.”

“Besides,” Volka said. “A major Demi-human city was destroyed and their forces in this region scattered. I agree with General Verde, we should press our advantage.”

“And what about the Ark fragments,” Jarrick yelled. “Yes we have one but now Hellios has one too. That’s not the only problem. From what the surviving mages have told me the firestorm caused by the Arks was expanding with no sign of stopping. Then, without warning, it collapsed into itself and vanished in a matter of moments. I want to know what would be able to absorb that amount of power so quickly.”

“It doesn’t matter,” Verde replied. “Colonel Marciel is investigating the Arks.”

“Even if there is a repeat of Iskandar,” said Volka. “As long as we are in Demi-human territory any collateral damage works in our favour.”

“How can you be so callous,” Jarrick began.

“Enough!” Edward shouted, slamming his fist on the table. “I have already decided a course of action. I have deployed advance forces into the surrounding area. Once they have secured the region we will begin the next stage of the invasion. Sky Marshal Volka, you will send fast ships, not bombers, to assist with reconnaissance. Admiral Dalton, how do the supply lines look?”

The meeting continued but Edward couldn’t shake the feeling that something was wrong.



Marciel pushed aside another layer of vines as he finally reached the central hall. He was in a large ruin that had been consumed by the Hellios jungles. According to his research these ruins were somehow related to the Ark of Earth.

The hall was huge. The walls seemed to be made of a yellow stone, covered in vines. Grass and flowers were growing from between the stone slabs that made up the floor. Huge stone statues stood in alcoves around the edge of the room.

He walked forward, heading towards a large door at the other end of the room. When he reached the centre of the hall, the ruins started to shake. Marciel glanced around and saw that the stone statues were beginning to move. They weren’t statues, they were Golems.

“*Bleep*,” he cursed as the ancient golems surrounded him, blocking his access to the door. They lumbered towards him, swinging their huge arms. He gathered his magic and unleashed a storm of shadow blades. The projectiles glanced harmlessly off the golem’s rock hard bodies. Marciel was forced to dodge out of the way as the golem’s huge limbs hammered the ground where he had been standing.

Realising he was in trouble, Marciel reached into his coat and pulled out his secret weapon. It appeared to be the handle of a dagger with no blade. He slashed with the handle and long strings of light lashed from the hilt, wrapping around the golem’s limbs. He pulled on the blade and the wires cut through the stone bodies like paper, collapsing the golems to rubble.

Marciel smiled as he put away the Razor Thread Blade. He walked quickly across the room towards the door but paused when he noticed the golems remains were moving. Realising that the golems were reassembling themselves, he raced through the door and slammed it shut behind him.

The door led to a small chamber with a raised dais in the centre, covered in grass. He used his magic to cut away the foliage, revealing a Sigil. He stepped onto the mark and activated it. The Sigil transported him across Hellios until he found himself standing on a cliff overlooking a huge desert.



Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: KainCrow on August 13, 2012, 05:13:54 PM
"The High Council is currently in a meeting," the guard grunted, his voice irritable, "I was told that I am to bring two of you to the High Council- your names?"
"Vulpe Vermilus and Sinkair Zephyrus," Sinkair answered, her eyes fixed upon the shining torches and the reflective surfaces of the decorations, "appointment set through the Captain Kaeda Anima."

The guard grunted again and walked, gesturing at them to follow- the location was beautiful, Vulpe have to admit that. Treasure hunter in him (and technically thief and illegal black market trader to some extend) itched to get hand around some of them- but he knew better than stealing something when it was packed with guards during the war time.
Still, he glanced at his companion, who was, sadly, too busy looking around, completely enticed by the shiny lights. He often envied her ability to completely distract herself.. He was getting stiff, tensing at the fact that he was about to (get dragged to) have an audience with the High Council- and the High Lord Caius. The Bounty Hunter and the Treasure Hunter guild, while was accepted as a legal organisation- everyone knew that some of their business matters dealt with illegal things. It was always just technical things and the fact that they took jobs offered by the High Council often at a price that kept them from being thrown into prison. It was truly rare for a bounty hunter or a treasure hunter to have completely clean hand on the illegal businesses. *wark*, it was a well known thing among the experienced bounty hunters and treasure hunters that the Hellios side of the guild actually traded things with the Arcadian side of the guild.

"Wait here- I will go inform the High Council that you've arrived."

Vulpe blinked, breaking out of his thoughts- He didn't bother looking at Sinkair who was still busy staring at the shiny reflections of lights. Instead, he waited- knowing that Sinkair wouldn't bother to act different in front of the High Council just because he tries to stop her- and soon enough, another guard came out of the grand door and spoke, his voice calm.

"Sinkair Ira Zephyrus and Vulpe Vermilus.. The High Council awaits. Please follow me."
"Yes~!"

Vulpe winced at the sudden, cheerful answer given from Sinkair- and sighed, resigned at the fate of being almost dragged into the meeting hall at Sinkair's hands who was skipping into the meeting hall.

@Ultima or anyone who's supposedly going to be present at the High Council meeting, please take next scene?
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: rsslayersr on August 16, 2012, 03:42:40 AM
OoC: sorry for the inactivity from my side. I haven't been busy or anything, just lazyness.. I think. I wasn't expecting me to write some today, or this late, but I stole the laptop for this purpose.


Alice woke up to the sight of a flickering candle. The atmosphere was calm, since it's been her first night of good sleep in a while, though it wasn't in a normal bed. She looked at the pile of dust collecting books as she lifted her head from the Birchwood table.

She rubbed the sleep from her eyes, as she realized that she'd fallen asleep here, in the councilors' library. "You're awake now, I presume." a soft, but yet intimidating voice calmly spoke. The girl jumped up, pushing her seat away as she stood. Surprised by this unwelcome good morning from someone else than Tobias, she turned around. The person's face was badly illuminated by the slight sunlight that beamed in from the windows. Alice kept quiet, anticipating another response from the man. One wearing grey, the one from before? Alice disregarded the thought quickly, as she knew she can't forget there is a small chance this man was a threat to her. It was a human for sure, no sign of any Demi-Human traits. Her eyes rolled towards the bow she placed leaning to the table. Her hand began to move slowly towards it. The man sighed and stretched his hand forwards.

"There's no need to turn this into a fight, is there?" He said with the same voice. Alice her arm, no, her whole torso and below was paralyzed. She was surprised, if not, a bit frustrated now.

"For one to talk such words, I'm being the prisoner. If you're looking for trust, you're not helping yourself, human."
The man in grey sighed again. "Politics do not matter here, child. Making a difference between us seems a bit harsh, if I may say for myself." He lowered his hands, lifting of the spell. Alice quickly balanced herself, stretching her toes and fingers.

"Before you reach for that bow again, I would like a talk with you, Alice."

Her eyes widened. "My.. Name.." Though she wasn't going for her bow anymore, she was still tense.

"Surprised? Your reputation is quite great with us. Greatest young mind of the South Green Mountains. Probably has more knowledge in her than some of the elders here. How can that be, for such an isolated girl as you. The world out here, still, like you said, imprisoned in the hands of the ones you call 'master'."

Was he trying to aggravate her? He couldn't.. In any case, she couldn't fall for such an easy trap, she thought to herself.

"Now, of course, the questions I have." She began. "Will you answer them?"

The man nodded. "Only if you're not changing this conversation into a boring one, I'll try."

"I see.. Then we'll skip it short. Who is 'us' and why do you have this information?"

"Isn't it obvious. You of all people should know. You're the one that has been obsessed with us, as we are, the long forgotten Order."

Alice's heart skipped. Shocked by the answer, she couldn't react fast enough until he spoke again.

"As for the information. As you should know, people like you can't stay out of the sight of men like us forever. It was just a matter of time until we could track you down."

Alice tried to swallow, but her throat was too dry to do such a thing. Her heart was racing. Was it fear? The man took of his hood. "There is no need to fear. If I was here to harm you, we would never had this conversation.". He revealed his black hair. From the look of it, he seemed as old as Magister Brom. Almost twice as old as herself. His eyes showed wisdom, power, and something else she couldn't figure out. She started to relax some more, without knowing for herself. "Then. What other business do you have with me?" she asked, now leaning to the table. The man smiled, as he stepped backwards. "I'm only here to warn you. We figured you were the sensible one. It's probably strange for you to hear, but your role in this is bigger than most. You're equally important as the one you'll meet soon, Lord Caius. Not to speak of the cat girl."

"Filling gaps with other questions!" she said frustrated.

"Now, now. It wouldn't be fun otherwise. Now if you will excuse me, I have some other business to attend."

Alice tried to stop him, but the man already started to walk out of the doorway. He was too far away to stop him before exiting. Questions popped up in her thoughts. What is the warning.. her role in all this? The cat girl? The *Bleep* did it on purpose.
She ran after him, just to see him disappear into the thick crowd. "Damnit!" she screamed inside her head.
This wasn't a meeting to forget, most definitely not. She was debating if she should share this with anyone. As extinct the Order of Grey was, something must've awakened them. The Ark..


The debate continued as she went to her companions. They weren't far, just a five minute walk. Outside stood Tobias, being as annoyed as ever. Alice shortly raised her hand to say hello, but Tobias didn't took it kindly, as he has been waiting for her since this night.

"Library?" He sharply said.

"Yeah." was the only response he got from her.

"You do indeed, never change one bit..." He sighed. "As long as you weren't killed. That would've made this trip a waste. You should really try not to worry everyone all the time. Who knows how the Magistry of the Five would react."

This pissed off Alice even more. With the morning she'd gotten. "Tobias, a serious thing just happened today. We really need to discuss it."

Tobias quickly ignored her. "We don't have time for your new discoveries you get from reading. We have something even more urgent. The next meeting with the Council."
This somewhat relieved her, as sharing the information could bring also him in danger.

"How about Erica?" She asked.

"That witch? I made sure she had something to do. Hunting I hope. Accidents happen most often there."

"As long as it isn't kicking chickens, I'm fine with it. The meeting?"

Tobias started walking. "Yes, yes. You can follow me.". They went to the place where they first started to enter. A second chance to redeem themselves, Alice thought. She was most interested to meet with Lord Caius, but suspected another negative on that matter. Alice went up the stairs, with Tobias following her. Her eyes picked up something. A spick of blackness filled a seat beyond the one guard guarding (what a surprise) the door.

"Do you have any important business to attend here?" The long face of this dog-human stuck out of his helmet. Interested as it may seem, she still had her eyes to that interested person she saw sitting down. Tobias quickly filled her place. "Yes. We're attending the meeting. Alice sar Breh and Tobias Mreast."
The guard let them pass, and they both started to take their seats. Alice watched closely to the two figures right in front of her. A fox that was constantly twitching his ears, interested in the voices he heard. Also a women. Featherfolk indeed. Black feathers, like she'd never seen before. It seemed like her mind was bored, more interested in the sparkling reflection of the table in front of her.

"Interesting.." she whispered to herself. The girl looked up from the sudden sound. She pointed her finger to Alice's eyes. "Shiny eyes- but not the ones I want. I need them more, tangible! More like that girl.". She now pointed her finger to the table, and followed the shiny cracks. "That’s the Shiny I like~ maybe."

Alice was flustered, surprised by such a reaction. Interesting indeed. Tobias tapped her on the shoulder. "Are you sure we're at the right place?.." She ignored him again. She was waiting for the first Councilor to speak.

OoC: I hate it how I always type Alice as Alive >.<
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: KainCrow on September 10, 2012, 06:05:42 AM
OoC : Where the heck is everyone? Short, because I don't have time to type much (am in a car heading to uni) but am still uploading something..


"...And regarding the battle taken place at the Iskandar, there had been witnesses of the aftermath, an old informant who often worked with few of our army members."
"Witnesses, as in people who saw how the flame engulfing the Iskandar had vanished?"

A few Councilors turned around and looked at the four demi-human they have never seen- so that was the reason they were there! Some of them had been wondering what strangers were doing in the High Council meeting. Among them, Ro, the representative of the featherfolks, slightly frowned at the sight of the black feathered featherfolk- it had been years since he had seen last of their kind, but this young featherfolk couldn't be from the Rook, could she? Their village was destroyed over 5 years ago, and no survivor was found.

As even two of the other featherforlks looked interested to the fox-man and the featherfolk girl, the fox who was twitching his ears irritably hissed at the girl who was busy staring at the bright shiny surfaces.

"Psst, Sinkair! Stop daydeaming!"
"....Huh? Ohh.. But there are a lot of shiny things.." The girl whined slightly, pouting- but she soon sighed and spoke seriously, her demeanor suddenly changing, "Still.. I am Sinkair Ira Zephyrus, a treasure and bounty hunter. I have recently got in contact with Captain Kaeda Anima about how the war had gotten heated up, and decided to head towards Iskandar after I gained some information regarding a kitten with sharp claws who got her paws on some artefact in form of a green gemstone. Heading to Iskandar, I have arrived at the cliff nearby the city, and witnessed the entire city engulfed by burning flames with power of the Ark of Fire and Ark of Wind- which, I have noticed, that suicidal little kitten had used without considering the danger of such power.. Probably her instincts had dulled, with all the times she spent with human.. Either way, after sometime, the fire suddenly began to be 'sucked in' from a point of the flame- and when all fire had been sucked off, the power of the Ark of Fire and Ark of Wind.. There were some hooded figures, holding a ring-shaped object that literally 'ate up' the power of the Arks.." Sinkair suddenly pouted, her voice turning into childish whine once more, "but it wasn't shiny, that ring was just black, like it even swallowed up the light instead of reflecting! No self-preserving demi-human would go near such a powerful thing unless it's life-or-death situation.."

The Councilors remained silent, unsure how to react to this mood-swings of the featherfolk girl who's age was very hard to determine due to her sudden changes in demeanor- How old was she anyway? Ten? Twenty? And as the fox-man who came with him silenced her by pointing out another shiny reflection from the decor, they began to discuss of what she had witnessed.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: rsslayersr on September 16, 2012, 05:03:42 AM
OoC: Too many hours spend on doing absolutely nothing.. Why can't I find any motivation for anything?



"That girl.. did she just recite the powers of the Ark? She was there.. What... What has she seen?"

The silence between the councilors and the other guest wasn’t of concern to Alice, but the words that black-winged featherfolk spoke, they were sharp to her. She tried to get things straight in her head, but the words floated back vigorously. The Arks, fire, wind, gems... And the Hooded people.. She realized that she wasn’t reading it in books anymore, it was reality now.

The link was easily made by her. The Order of the Grey were here, for whatever reason. The odds of this all being a coincidence was slim. A plan was on motion, but in who’s favour? This Sinkair made more questions than answers. Even she herself was another secret to be unraveled. Her name sounds.. familiar, but everything does when you’ve read that many books. Alice was spacing out with all the new questions that she had now.

Sinkair was distracted again. Her interest in shiny objects was.. Annoying sometimes, interesting at least. With one arm leaning on the table before her, she clenched her fist on the other. "Why aren't I getting the answers we need to solve this mad puzzle!" She thought to herself. She pulled herself up straight, looking at all the other people that were having chaotic engaging discussions about what they've just heard. Tobias also was confused by it. It seemed like it was his intention to believe it was all a hoax.. "My studies.." she silently said to herself.

Her pupils widened as she examined the black-feathered girl again. She suddenly was reminded by the conversation she had with that human from before. Alice tried to say something. Her throat was dry and her voice unheard by most. “K.. Kitten..
The fox’ ears twitched.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: YiazmatSlayer on January 15, 2013, 08:25:57 PM
Moderator Message: Hey guys, is this RP still active? I won't lock it without confirmation from Dragon Lord that this RP is in fact, dead.

Yiaz~
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: Dragon Lord on January 16, 2013, 11:28:36 PM
I'm happy to let the RP die.

I just started a new full time job so I don't really have time to post anything during the week.

If people really want to try to revive it then fair enough,but otherwise, I'm out.
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: YiazmatSlayer on January 17, 2013, 03:27:12 PM
Okay, thank you. I'll wait to see what the others have to say as well :)
Title: Re: The Ark of Infinity [Open]
Post by: rsslayersr on January 17, 2013, 06:39:33 PM
I'm one with the time to write.. but with no ideas anymore. If we want to continue, we really need the input of everyone. I don't see that happening, actually :(
Most of you are really busy with school and work and social life, and I can understand that :3

Whenever a new RP is created, I'm certain that I'll be part of it again ^^