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 Post subject: New Changes. Old Demons.
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2016 6:45 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 11:55 pm
Posts: 258
The storm that was brewing up appeared to be a fierce one. Despite it occurring far from the First City, its effects could be felt throughout. Lightning flashes so potent it could blind someone had they gazed at the wrong moment.

A priest of Altharin began to rise from his knelt pose after several hours of meditation. Two acolytes rushed to aid him getting up. The priest brushed them off. ‘I may only have one arm, but I am still capable of getting up on my own, your assistance is welcomed though. Thank you.’ he stated as he stood.

‘Still adamantly independent I see.’ came from the individual standing by the temple’s entrance as she wait for the Cleric to finish his long prayer to the gods. The Altharin genuinely smiled as he greeted his visitor with a warm hug when she walked in. ‘It has been a few, hasn’t it? I imagine with your new duties things have kept you very busy. You have been missed, dearest Tabithna.’

She reciprocated with a hug. ‘Aye, it has been. It appears the rumors are true: with change come new responsibilities.’ Both laughed at the prospect.

‘Congratulations on your recent appointment as a Gate Keeper. It is not often that someone with a skillset as diverse as yours is recognized for such a prestigious and tenuous position.’ continued praising the Cleric.

‘When did you become such a suck up, Eifraien?’ she chided at him.

‘So harsh, Tabi! I am not Him and I thought that the job of hard ass belonged to Plish.’ Both paused briefly at the mention of the names.

‘Things really have changed a lot, haven’t they? I will not lie, I miss th … our “adventures”.’ stated Tabithna as she laid her head down low.

‘Things are as they are. It cannot be controlled and was unavoidable. We all moved on with our lives and goals.’ began Eifraien. ‘You … still … think of him, don’t you?’ he asked.

‘How could I not? You know how strongly I fell for him and despite his warnings not to, I still di ..’ she was interrupted by a strong thunderous boom from the storm’s lightning. ‘Wow! That’s coming down hard, isn’t it?!’ she responded shockingly.

‘Aye, it’s been said that storms this potent tend to be omens of things to come.’ Eifraien began as another strike landed this time the flash of the thunder lasting unusually longer than normal. By the time the flash dissipated, two figures stood at the temple’s entrance.

One of the figures removed his hood as he walked into the temple. He reached out his hand toward the second figure who remained hooded as she grabbed his hand. He escorted her in and inquired in Low Coryani to all inside. ‘Good morning everyone, I am seeking the Cleric by the name of Eifraien val’Abebi. I was advised he frequented this temple.’

‘And you are?’ inquired one of the temple’s acolytes.

‘Ah! Pardon my manners. I am Erothlos of Elonbé, Holy Champion of Belisarda. This’ as he addressed the figure behind him ‘is the Lady Arialas, Keeper of the Word and Ardahiri of the Eloran people.’

‘Life Warden’ responded Eifraien.

‘You know your Eloran and our lore, well, kind sir.’ proudly stated Erothlos.

‘Indeed. In my travels I used to adventure with an Eloran Elementalist amongst our midst. He was an odd sort, especially with his speech pattern, but there was no mistaking the wealth of knowledge he carried within him. Erothlos of Elonbé, the Cleric you seek stands before you. I am Eifraien val’Abebi.’ responded the Cleric.

The Marokene’s eyes lit briefly as lightning struck once more due to the storm now raining throughout the city. ‘Then we have much to talk about, Eifraien of Altharia. Tell me all you know of the Elorii Ar’Kelos.’

To be continued …

_________________
Talendos, the Shadow Raven
2.7 Expert, Soldier of Retribution, Assassin
"When you do something right, it's as if you didn't do it at all ..."

Echo
B-lister, Super Human, Brawler
"Bringing the noise!"


Last edited by EddieS on Mon Feb 29, 2016 12:05 am, edited 3 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: New Changes. Old Demons ...
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2016 6:46 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 11:55 pm
Posts: 258
Back at it, little by little. Again, please pardon my crude form. I still suck at this :lol:

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Talendos, the Shadow Raven
2.7 Expert, Soldier of Retribution, Assassin
"When you do something right, it's as if you didn't do it at all ..."

Echo
B-lister, Super Human, Brawler
"Bringing the noise!"


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 Post subject: Re: New Changes. Old Demons ...
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2016 7:06 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 12:08 am
Posts: 1223
Not at all, Eddie. Very enjoyable.

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 Post subject: Re: New Changes. Old Demons.
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2016 7:03 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 11:55 pm
Posts: 258
New Changes. Old Demons pt. 2

[3 years ago ….]

The Dwarf and Elorii bantered back and forth in heated argument all while the Mage packed his belongings. His decision to part paths was no secret.

‘It doesn’t have to be this way, Ar’Kelos. We all had varied and different opinions before and always managed to get through fine. This can be one of those moments as well. Don’t leave.’ she held onto him with a determined look in her eyes.

The Kelekene looked at Tabithna, his gaze so deep it appeared to pierce her soul. He gently kissed the val’Inares’ forehead and proceeded to leave.

‘This is how you want to end things?’ demanded Plish.

Ar’Kelos continued to walk off.

‘I’m beginning to understand why the Society has you marked!’ shouted Plish. ’The next time we meet, it will be crossed paths! You hear me you rouge-haired bookworm!!’

Ar’Kelos’ traveled on. The words of the Rogue had no effect on him. Not once did he look back.

Tabithna saddened demeanor didn’t help the situation. Plish walked by her and scoffed ‘Your heart blinds you towards him. You still refuse to recognize him for the selfish bastard he is.’

‘Shut up Plish. Now is not the time’ she retorted sadly.

‘Don’t feed me that, Tabithna. You know how he is …’ spat Plish.

‘ENOUGH PLISH!’ she yelled, interrupting the Dwarf's rant.

‘Garbage! The first sign was when Govrin passed away. He spared that … things’ life, yet he barely mourned for Govrin during the wake and all for what, a stupid gem?!’ growled the rogue.

‘The course of that event was out of his control, out of any of our control, Plish. You’re acting irrational.’ stated Eifraien who had remained silent throughout the entire argument, simply observing it all.

‘You’re irrate that he spared the Vuldroag? All when I thought you all decided to kill him off? That’s your displeasure with Ar’Kelos? I swear Plish, there are times I do not know what your hatred against him is, especially with how many times his quick thinking saved your cursed rear. Is it jealousy?’ scowled Tabithna.

‘I think this is the one of the few times I agree with the rouge-haired bastard. It is time to part paths.’ pondered the rogue. Acting upon it, he too began to pack his effects.

‘What? What is wrong with you, Plish?! You’re being brash!’ demanded Tabithna.

‘Let him be, Tabi. He’s a grown Dwarf. He knows exactly what he’s doing.’ responded Eifraien.

The Bard looked back toward the Cleric. His eyes closed, he shook his head negatively. She just stood there as Plish finished packing up. Both didn’t move a muscle as the Rogue walked out of their lives.

‘And thus we were two ….’ whispered Tabithna.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[Present day]

‘As vast as his knowledge is, and how much he contributed to our adventures, there truly isn’t much to say regarding Ar’Kelos. He was always reserved to himself.’ began Eifraien as he spoke toward the Marokene. ‘His mind was always somewhere else, even during the heat of battle. How he managed to be in two different places mentally while still maintaining his concentration and control baffles me to this day.’

‘I’ve been made aware of just how distant he can be most times.’ responded Erothlos, taking in all Eifraien’s tales of the Kelekene.

‘Now I am curious.’ Eifraien asked inquisitively. ‘Why do wish to know so much about him?’

‘We, and his family, are concerned for him. Even for an Elorii, he’s been gone for a long time, and the fruits of most of his labors have reached our ears.’ responded Erothlos.

‘His family?’ interjected Tabithna. ‘I thought he didn’t speak to them?’

‘It has been a while, hence the concern. He parted too many decades ago and we fear his current focus may drive him toward a direction that may prove unhealthy for him, as well as others. His siblings’ worries have intensified and we’ve been tasked to find him and the others.’ replied Erothlos with a small sigh.

‘You … you’re one of them, aren’t you?’ deduced Tabithna.

Erothlos’ look intensified once more, as if passing judgment on the Gatekeeper. Seconds later his serious demeanor dropped. ‘Indeed, I am one of his siblings ...’ Erothlos suddenly turned his head slightly toward Arialas as she whispered to him ..... ‘Are you sure, my Lady?’

Arialas’ nodded to proceed.

‘As you command … There are five of us: Ar’Kelos is the eldest, I am the third oldest, followed by the youngest, the twin Ilithas and Talendos. The Lady Arialas is too one of my siblings, second eldest amongst us. We have been seeking out the sibilings. We know Ilithas is off in the Pirate Isle up to her own vices. As for Lady Arialas and myself, we’ve been in the temples and protecting our people from the local threats. So far the only ones whose whereabouts are unknown are that of Ar’Kelos and Talendos.'

‘Why the concern?’ continued Eifraien. ‘What is this path you so fear he might head towards? How have they managed to elude you so far? And, cannot the Lady speak?’

‘I cannot say. In part due to not knowing accurately his course of action. The other part is I am forbidden to speak of it, my full pardons.’ Erothlos bowed apologetically. ‘Regarding them eluding us – Ar’Kelos may seem the recluse, but he is very crafty. He’s maintained himself several steps way ahead of us and those he has interacted with previously, thus making it difficult to locate him. Talendos … that Osalikene is one with the shadows. If he wishes to stay hidden, no force on Onara will find him, much to our bathos.’ As for Lady Arialas, she is a Keeper of the Word. The phrase "Names and Words have Power" take a whole new meaning if she ever decided to become audible enough. It would not be wise to hear her speak at a normal volume or greater.’

‘This cannot be a coincidence. Those two are linked in some way, aren't they?’ mused Tabithna.

‘Very astute … Tabithna, was it?’ Erothlos replied.

‘Aye. Tabithna val’Inares. Sword Saint of Anshar, Bardic Gatekeeper.’ curtsying upon formally introducing herself.

‘We believe there is a bond of sorts. A … what is the word you humans use? …. karmic tie? … between both of them. This maybe root of the cause for Ar’Kelos’ drive toward his goals.' continued Erothlos.

The storm began to subside, though the thunder and lightning still danced in the heavens making their presences known. Another lightning strike brightened up the inside front part of the temple they were in, enough for everyone to get caught off guard at the fifth individual in the room standing idly on a wall, hidden by the shadows before the lightning struck.

‘Now, now, don't stop on my account. The tales have been very entertaining so far …’ the stranger gleefully stated.

To be continued …

_________________
Talendos, the Shadow Raven
2.7 Expert, Soldier of Retribution, Assassin
"When you do something right, it's as if you didn't do it at all ..."

Echo
B-lister, Super Human, Brawler
"Bringing the noise!"


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 Post subject: Re: New Changes. Old Demons.
PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2016 2:12 am 

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 11:55 pm
Posts: 258
New Changes. Old Demons pt. 3

Erothlos quickly placed himself in front of his charge, ensuring he blocked the stranger’s path, shield drawn and hand on sword.

‘What the ..?’ reacted Tabithna.

‘Who are you?’ inquired Eifraien, despite being caught off guard.

‘Me? Oh, I am no one. Just a mere whisper on the wind, and I’d rather keep it that way, if you all don’t mind. Too much attention is rather unsavory.’ replied the stranger mockingly.

‘Assuming you’ve been here since the beginning of our conversation, you know who we are. Identify yourself.’ demanded Eifraien.

‘Hmm. I forget you all are into that whole “introduction” thing, huh? Fair enough.’ the stranger stepped forward from his relaxed pose on the wall, displaying an impressive height despite his thin frame. ‘To a small number, I am known as the Raven that stalks the Shadows.’ bowing as is pronounced himself. ‘To an even fewer, select, folks.’ he straightened as he began to pull down his hood ‘I am simply known as …’

‘Talendos.’ completed Erothlos with a smile, recognizing the Osalikene standing before him.

The Elorii looked towards the vals, smiling in such a manner that displayed his feral teeth, and nodded as he extended his hand toward Erothlos in acknowledgement.

‘What in Belisarda’s name are you doing here?’ asked Erothlos curiously as he stashed away his shield and began to approach the Osalikene.

‘Oh you know. I’m kind of like that creature of myth and legends: state my name thrice-fold upon a reflective surface and I juuuust might make an appearance.’ chuckled Talendos mischievously.

Talendos’ focus was broken when some of the air was squeezed out of him as the Marokene suddenly hugged him. ‘Still the openly affectionate type, eh eil <eloran: brother>?’ still grasping to regain his full breath.

The two vals looked at each other and back at the Elorii in slight disbelief. ‘Are you sure you’re Ar’Kelos’ siblings? He never, and I mean NEVER acted anything remotely like you.’ stated Tabithna, still in awe.

‘Haha, Ar'k is more locked up than your fabled Throne.’ laughed Talendos. ‘He'd be an Eloran of Ice if such could exist! Btw Erothlos, stop trying to chase me down.’ began Talendos with a serious tone. ‘You know you’re not going to locate me. It’s like you said earlier … “no force on Onara ….” smiling coyly upon repeating Erothlos’ praise. ‘That and it’s annoying as all hell. I am over a century and a quarter years old, leave me be.’

Lady Arialas approached Talendos, holding his hand, whispering to him. ‘Hello, ail<eloran: sister>, it is good to see you again too.’ smiled Talendos genuinely at the Lady. ‘I am sorry I’ve been away so long. But you know ... reasons.’

‘You know why we sought you out, Talendos. We need to find Ar’Kelos and quickly.’ retorted Erothlos.

‘You’re looking in the wrong direction then, Erothlos.’ replied Talendos. ‘There is no link between he and I. I do not know where you came up with that. I never found him and you are right - Ar’Kelos has been several steps ahead of everyone. He’s even predicted where I would be a couple of times, a feat difficult for even most experienced trackers. I swear he would be a one of the greatest tacticians on Onara if it were not for his head stuck within tomes and orbs most of the time.’

‘I’m beginning to understand Plish’s phrase “rouge-haired bookworm”’ said Tabithna in a moment of odd epiphany.

‘Time is of the essence and we haven’t progressed further.’ Erothlos stated disappointingly.

‘All may not be lost, Erothlos.’ pondered Eifraien. ‘There is a chance another individual we are acquainted with may know of Ar’Kelos’ whereabouts.’

‘Then let us not waste any more time! Please, take us to this person.’ asked Erothlos.

‘Let me gather my effects and we’ll be on our way.’ as Eifraien rummaged through his supplies. ‘I must warn you though. He may not exactly be the happiest to see us, especially if the topic of Ar’Kelos arises.’

‘Oh?’ Talendos responded curiously.

‘Let us just say things ended with some friction between those two.’ replied Eifraien.

Talendos laughed again ‘That’s nothing new when it comes to Ar’Kelos.’

The five walked out of the temple, Eifraien and Tabithna leading them to their destination.

Addressing Talendos, Erothlos asked ‘What is “rouge-haired”?’

‘Beats me.’ replied the Osalikene. ‘Humans tend to have the oddest of customs and phrases.’

‘A few which you have apparently picked up.’ taunted Erothlos.

‘Hah! You think that is strange? Did you know they have a competition involving urinating?! Of All things, they compete for THAT!’ snickered Talendos.

Tabithna’s eyes widened, not sure if it was horror or disbelief, as she listened to the conversation the Elorii partook of. She looked over at Eifraien for hope of comfort and comprehension. The val’Abebi just shook his head as if saying he wanted no part of that. It was going to be a looong hour’s walk to their goal.

Upon reaching the intended location, both vals’ faces were extremely red with embarrassment at the Osalikene’s tales of his adventures amongst the other races on Onara.

Tabithna whispered to Eifraien ‘No wonder they think oddly of us! Just who has this Elorii adventured with?!’ Eifraien just continued to shake his head as he walked into the establishment. The others followed him in.

‘Hello father Eifraien.’ greeted a man dropping off a box of supplies as he attended the visitors.

Eifraien returned the greeting. ‘Is he here?’

‘Yes, father. He is in the back, brooding as he normally does.’ responded the attendant.

‘Thank you.’ Eifraien politely responded. ‘Please bring refreshments for the five of … huh?’ Eifraien paused in confusion as he only saw Tabithna, Lady Arialas, and Erothlos with him. The others, looked about upon noticing the val’s confusion, becoming just as stumped when they realized Talendos was no longer amongst them. ‘… make that the four of us then.’ continued Eifraien. He then walked into the back of the establishment with the others. There they witnessed a Dwarf working on a sharpening his weapons with a whetstone.

‘Plish.’ began Eifraien.

The Dwarf looked up briefly. Disappointed with whom came to visit, he continued with his project. ‘Hmph. What the hell do you want, one arm?’ growled Plish at the Cleric.

‘We need to find Ar'Kelos and I know you are aware of his whereabouts.’ stated Eifraien strongly.

Plish stopped at the mention of the Kelekene's name. A evil grin dominated his face as he looked up towards the party before him.

To be continued …

_________________
Talendos, the Shadow Raven
2.7 Expert, Soldier of Retribution, Assassin
"When you do something right, it's as if you didn't do it at all ..."

Echo
B-lister, Super Human, Brawler
"Bringing the noise!"


Last edited by EddieS on Thu Mar 03, 2016 2:11 am, edited 9 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: New Changes. Old Demons.
PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2016 8:46 am 

Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 12:46 pm
Posts: 1278
Nicely done, Eddie. Definitely looking forward to the next part. As one of Talendos' regular companions, it makes me wonder what I've done to so embarrass Tabi. Maybe I should go back to trying to let you practice with my short sword. ;)

With a sweep of his hat,

Paul


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 Post subject: Re: New Changes. Old Demons.
PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2016 3:18 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 11:55 pm
Posts: 258
Hat wrote:
Nicely done, Eddie. Definitely looking forward to the next part. As one of Talendos' regular companions, it makes me wonder what I've done to so embarrass Tabi. Maybe I should go back to trying to let you practice with my short sword. ;)

With a sweep of his hat,

Paul


:lol: The more embarrassing events happen to occur when The Mountain and Alesia have been around (note: not exactly cause by them, just they were present) ;) Btw, the events in this story are about 5-6 yrs after most of the adventures Talendos has shared with Vincens, Dessa, The Mountain, and Alesia. As well as deviating off a tad as events in these stories have, in certain parts, unfolded differently than that of the Arcanis Living Campaign.

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Talendos, the Shadow Raven
2.7 Expert, Soldier of Retribution, Assassin
"When you do something right, it's as if you didn't do it at all ..."

Echo
B-lister, Super Human, Brawler
"Bringing the noise!"


Last edited by EddieS on Tue May 17, 2016 4:17 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: New Changes. Old Demons.
PostPosted: Fri Mar 04, 2016 12:37 am 

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 11:55 pm
Posts: 258
New Changes. Old Demons pt. 4

His grin never ending, Plish continued ‘He finally did it, eh? He crossed the line with you too, Eifraien?’

‘The matter is more pressing than personal grudge, Plish. Apparently Ar’Kelos is doing something that can be hazardous to himself as well as others.’ replied the val.

‘So what?!’ snapped the Dwarf. ‘He stuck his neck out into something he can’t handle? That’s his problem.’ Plish stood up, sheathed his knives, and move to lean on a crate. ‘Why should I care what that rouge-haired basta …’

‘Careful, Cursed One. You slight more than him by completing your statement.’ interrupted Erothlos.

‘Eh? Who the hell are you?’ inquired the Rogue as if just now taking the Elorii’s presence into account.

‘I am Erothlos, Holy Champion of Belisarda’ responded the Marokene taking a defiant stance.

‘Is that so? So did the bastard cross you too or are you here to look all novaran-pretty?’ mocked Plish.

‘I warn you against the slight, Cursed One.’ as Erothlos placed a hand on his sword.

Plish chuckled ‘I don’t fear your blade, Rock-O.’

‘It’s not mine you need to fear.’ gestured Erothlos toward the Dwarf's back.

Plish suddenly felt the pressure of something pricking his back. As he slowly turned his head, his noticed another Elorii holding a short sword upon him. ‘Hi.’ broached the Elorii, ending the statement with a smile brandishing his teeth.

‘How the?!’ reacted Plish pulling away. ‘There is another one of you? What is it, is your grand forest on fire or something?’ retorted Plish still surprised that anyone was able to sneak up on him.

Sheathing his sword, Talendos stood up and also took a nonchalant pose against a different crate. ‘Not nice to insult one’s father when not even knowing him, scrubby.’ as he settled into a comfortable position.

‘You’re his family?’ Plish began laughing ‘That horse’s ass has family?!’ laughing harder ‘Oh the irony of it all!’

‘Enough Plish!’ demanded Eifraien. ‘The matter is of severe importance. Do you or do you not know where Ar’Kelos is?’

Looking back at both vals ‘And what if I do? Why should I get involved?’

‘Things can get out of control, apparently at a truly bad level, Plish. Enough games!’ barked Eifraien.

Plish began to ponder … ‘I haven’t heard or known of him for months. Last I knew any mention of him he was at the Caltin Observatory.’

‘Caltin? Why there?’ asked Tabithna puzzled at the revelation.

Eifraien looked back at the Elorii. Two of them shrugged, having no clue why the Observatory.

‘We’re going to need horses and supplies. Caltin is several days travel from here.’ discussed Eifraien ‘There is also the matter of how we’re going to get access to the observatory.’

Plish grabbed his backpack and started to gather supplies. ‘You’re useless without me.’ he scoffed as he continued packing.

‘Wait, you’re coming?’ asked Tabithna shockingly.

‘What, and miss the opportunity to thwart whatever the rouge-haired bookworm is doing? Perish the thought! Besides, I can get you safe passage to the observatory.’ Plish closed his pack upon it being full. ‘There is a place we can gather supplies on the way toward a stall.’



It didn’t take long for everyone to gather up. After acquiring sufficient effects for the travel, they began their way. The ride was long, but for most part uneventful. Most of the time was spent by listening to Tabithna and Talendos exchanging tales of their adventures. Surprisingly, several days went by quickly.

As the party approached the Enclave of Tultipet, they we quickly surrounded by several rows of sentries aiming crossbows at them from ramparts on the sides of the pathway leading up to the first gate.

‘Halt and identify yourself!’ boomed a voice in Udor demandingly from the gate.

Plish rode up a bit fruther, responding in his native tongue ‘I am Kalibec, son of Evakrin. I have come to see the elders as I have reached my one-hundred and tenth.’

After several moments, the gates opened. Plish waved at the others to wait where they are and he road toward the gate. There he was met by several guards as conversation began to take place. Several more moments passed by till finally Plish waved at his comrades to come. The party was escorted in by four guards. It took a couple more hours to reach the actual enclave.

‘This looks very different from Solanis Mor.’ observed Talendos, noticing many places seemed ruined by some sort or other.

‘You’ve been to Solanis?’ inquired Plish

‘Early during the last Crusade.’ continued Talendos as he kept observing the differences he recalled from the Mor.

When they reached the heart of the Enclave, the guards stopped the party and addressed Plish in Udor ‘Go attend to your matters. Your comrades shall be escorted to a waiting area toward the West.’ Plish moved further in and the rest of the party was ushered to a large waiting room. The doors were locked and guards placed outside as time began to elapse. Half an hour later, Plish joined them. Two hours would go by before they were attended. ‘Prepare yourselves, we move as soon as you are ready.’ stated one of the guards as he entered the room.

Ten guards now accompanied the party as they traveled to the Western end of the Enclave. Once they reached what appeared to be the farther Western gate, the guards stopped. ‘We cannot escort you any further, Kalibec. It will take about a day and a half travel to reach the observatory from here. Avoid Amanish to the Northwest.’

Plish thanked them then lead the way.

‘That was an awful lot of guards just to escort us.’ Tabithna observed.

‘They’re as paranoid as ever.’ complained Plish.

Heading the advice of the Tulpetian guards, their travels took a day and a half and went without serious incident. Upon reaching Caltin Observatory, the party addressed the guards. When the local head of the observatory met with them, Plish explained they were seeking a Kelekene Elorii that supposedly had come to study with them.

‘Yes, we are familiar with the Kelekene. Oh what insight that Elorii had!’ explained the head observer gleefully. ‘His theories were very fascinating, beyond anything I could have imagined.’

‘You stated “had” and “were”. Is the Kelekene not here?’ inquired Erothlos.

‘I am afraid you have missed him. He was seen leaving the observatory roughly three months ago.’ replied the observer. ‘It was said he split his entourage toward two different directions. One set towards the South, apparently toward the Sea of Lanterns. The other to the East, I did not catch what the destination was.’

All three Elorii looked at each other when the East was mentioned.

‘I’ve come all this way to be a thorn on that bookworm’s side and he still manages to stay a step ahead. I really hate that elf sometimes.’ growled Plish.

‘No time for personal sentiments, Cursed One. We need to find him and quickly.’ interjected Erothlos. ’As much as I dislike to state this. I think it would be wise if we split up to find him. Eifraien of Atheria, can you please go with Tabithna and Plish toward the South? Talendos, Lady Arialas, and I shall investigate the East. We should be able to track the respective groups with little difficulties.’ completed the Marokene.

Eifraien, somewhat reluctantly, agreed. ‘I am not fond of going in smaller numbers, but I do understand the haste of the matter. Agreed, Erothlos. Let us meet up in the First City again after this ordeal is through.’

Erothlos nodded in agreement as both groups prepared to go their separate ways.

To be continued …

_________________
Talendos, the Shadow Raven
2.7 Expert, Soldier of Retribution, Assassin
"When you do something right, it's as if you didn't do it at all ..."

Echo
B-lister, Super Human, Brawler
"Bringing the noise!"


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 Post subject: Re: New Changes. Old Demons.
PostPosted: Fri Mar 04, 2016 8:56 am 
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Good story, looking forward to the next part!

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aka Leif of House Borghild - Skohir Human Myrmidon (Martial 2.4)
aka Rurik of Nol Dappa - Dwarven War Priest (Divine 2.3)


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 Post subject: Re: New Changes. Old Demons.
PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2016 1:21 am 

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 11:55 pm
Posts: 258
New Changes. Old Demons pt. 5

The group began formulating their plan concerning the two different destinations. Each provided any insight to the respective directions. It wasn’t long before the pressing question regarding the Kelekene would come up.

‘Erothlos.’ began Eifraien, ‘There is one thing that still troubles me. What exactly are we up against? What is the great threat Ar’Kelos may unleash with this act? I need to aware of what is going on so we can properly prepare.’

Erothlos sighed. ‘Your concerns are well placed and you deserve an answer.’ he looked back a Lady Arialas whom still stayed silent. ‘We believe he seeks to unlock the past. What we believe he is unlocking is not what we fear. How he is going about it, is. If allowed to proceed, it jeopardizes the lives of many. Something we Elorii have sworn to never do again. I am truly sorry, I cannot give you more than this.’

Eifraien pondered the Marokene’s words deeply for a moment. ‘I believe I understand. Let us find him quickly and end this.’ Everyone nodded in agreement at the Cleric’s words.

Normally, tracks three months old would be almost impossible to find, but the little traffic in the area and no weather doing any significant changes made tracking difficult, but feasible.

The Eloran group headed off first, charging quickly toward the East basin of the mountain, toward the Fervidus Hills and Voei territory. Eifraien’s party headed off South bound moments later.

No later than half a day’s travel, signs of the tracks Efraien's party followed took on an odd pattern. The foot and wagon prints displayed signs of trailing off to the side. Investigating further, they spotted a damaged wagon roughly three-hundred paces from the main path. Who, or what, ever attacked it left it barren of any supplies and signs of a scuffle littered the area. The tracks lead even further away from the path towards a cropping. The trio quietly approached it just in time to notice two humanoid figures searching around, roughly thirty paces ahead. They chattered in an unknown tongue and hunched forward somewhat. That’s when Plish noticed the tails and elongated noses.

‘Ratmen?’ he whispered to the party. ‘What are they doing so far up in the mounta …. OH CRAP!’ Plish’s comment was suddenly silenced with a thud. All three faded into black.

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

The three Elorii rode fiercely, stopping only to avoid small contingents of Voei, to allow the horses to rest and feed/drink, or to double check the tracks they were following. As luck would have it, traffic in this area was low with the exception of the Voei, making it easier to follow the other group that could lead to Ar’Kelos’ possible whereabouts. Half a day’s ride they found what they were looking for, much to their disarray.

‘By Belisarda’ stated Erothlos with horror as he witnessed that which was before him.

The scene was something out of a gory murder investigation. Bodies laid everywhere, both humanoid and horses alike. The wagon, too small to provide enough space to carry sufficient supplies, was destroyed beyond repair. Signs of decay began to settle in and the first signs of carrion birds circled the sky above.

Talendos dismounted and began to scrutinize what happened here.

The other two Elorii dismounted. Erothlos prepared a makeshift post to tether the horses to. He began to approach closer ‘This was a slaughter.’

‘This makes no sense.’ began Talendos as he analyzed the site.

‘Elaborate, Talendos.’ asked Erothlos.

‘Eil, we are amongst each other, what's with the formalities?’ interjected Talendos. ‘The caravan is too small to make it all the way toward where we suspected. And look at the signs of the skirmish here. No indication of anyone being dragged off, nor are there any deeper impressions than other amongst the prints. Thankfully, it does not appear like Ar’Kelos was here, but still this disturbs me. It’s like this team was set up as a distraction.’

‘Why does that seem troublesome?’ inquired Erothlos.

‘Because I do not know if the group deliberately knew or were unaware of being sacrificial pawns.’ completed Talendos.

Lady Arialas began to walk throughout the area at a certain pace. She held her holy symbol in hand and offered silent prayers to those that fell in hopes to provide their souls some semblance of peace into the beyond.

‘Rain check on that, ail, we got company.’ stated Talendos as he drew both his swords.

Surrounding them was a pack of Voei. However, they did not charge violently as they’ve been known to do. Weapons in hands, they started to bang them against their shields. Upon doing so in unison, they charged in.

Erothlos quickly cast a spell and immediately took a defensive stance to protect Arialas.

‘Never say there are dull moments when traveling with family.’ chuckled Talendos to himself.

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

Tabithna awoke with a smashing headache. She attempted to move about and gather her surroundings, but found herself restrained. Upon opening her eyes, she looked around. She was tied against a post in what appeared to be a courtyard of sorts. To her sides she saw both Eifraien and Plish also tied to similar posts.

Before them were three of the rat-like humanoids from before. They held spears in hand, watching over their captives. One of them scurried off behind the prisoners when all three regained consciousness.

‘Are you okay, Tabithna?’ whispered Eifraien.

‘Aye, though I have a headache that could rival one of Plish’s hangovers.’ she stated.

‘You wished.’ scoffed the Dwarf.

‘You figure a way out of this yet?’ inquired Tabithna.

‘Nay. And the rope job they’ve used on me is pretty remarkable. I have yet been able to wriggle myself free from it.’ completed the Rogue.

Moments later, the ratman that scurried off returned to his post besides the other two ratmen. ‘Good, you have all awakened.’ followed a voice in calm, alluring manner. A woman began moving from behind the restrained group to face them, walking with a familiarly sultry grace, wearing a familiarly scant robe that still managed to make even Larissan Dancers blush.

‘You have GOT to be kidding me!’ quipped Plish.

‘Aww. You DO remember me! You’re making me blush, Dwarf.’ she faked coyly trying to cover her face as she caressed the Dwarf's.

‘So this is where you fled toward? We thought you long gone. You were overdue for a dip.’ taunted Tabithna, hoping to strike the right nerve.

‘Down, kitty. No claws for you today. And seeing the precarious position you’re in, no magic either. Btw, I feel even a minor mental pulse and the other three bite it.’ warned the woman looking at Tabithna.

‘Three? Wait, you have the Elorii?’ demanded Tabithna.

‘For about three months now.’ boasted the woman. ‘He’s been my plaything for the time being.’ smiling mischievously as she continued to brag.

‘You want to see claws? I’ll show you claws!’ reacted Tabithna as she tried to break free from her bonds.

‘My, my, my, aren’t we the green one?’ taunted the woman.

‘What do you want with us? If it’s another invitation to join your flea-bitten club, our answer is still no.’ stated Eifraien defiantly.

‘Your chance for the Gift was squandered, heathen. You’ll never get that offer again.’ she scowled. ‘After you defeated me back then, my pups and pupils were rounded up and exterminated. As if we were vermin! How dare you! No, your fate shall be different this time. Food for the Gods, starting with the Mage below.’ she smiled wickedly.

‘NO!’ yelled Tabithna, continuing to struggled versus her bindings.

The scant robe woman instructed one of the ratmen to go below and give the order. It proceeded toward the entrance of the courtyard and turned into an entrance on the left, there if followed a rampart down to a set of short stairs which lead to a set of jail cells. It went to the first cell. There a figure laid a figure chained against the wall. Battered and beaten so badly the bruises on his face covered one of his eyes.

The Elorii looked up as best he could at his would-be visitor. ‘Your time comes, Elorii. You. Come do as the lady commanded.’ pointing at a figure further down the cell hall. A massive creature came forth and faced the cell with the Eloran captive. The ratman started to head back upstairs. The Elorii looked at the being before him. ‘Finish what you should have done months ago.’ The being grasped the cell’s door and ripped it off its hinges. It approached the captive, grasping him by the throat as he lifted the Elorii off his feet …

The ratman made his way back to the courtyard. ‘It has begun, my Lady.’ it reconfirmed when it reunited with his other ratmen and the woman.

‘Good. Now for you.’ as she turned to her captives. ‘I wanted to see you die swiftly due to all the troubles you have caused me. But, in my time brooding over your demise, it seemed much more appropriate to see you suffer. I want to see you squirm in pain, writhe in agony, and watch in horror as you are consumed slowly to death. Normally, I would have brought forth zombies to do the job, but seeing where we are and how scarce food is to come by at times, I figured I’d let the ratmen here feast off you until nothing but pure white bones are left. Yes, I think I will thoroughly enjoy the site of this. Go, my children, feast to your hearts’ content.’ commanded the woman.

The ratmen dropped their weapons and began to approach the three captives. Their mouths salivating at the prospect of humanoid flesh. They never made five feet away from their starting point ...

A loud roar came from the heavens as a large hunk of flaming rock crashed upon the ratmen and the woman. The sheer force of the impact along with the massive heat evaporated the ratmen into nothing, even the three captives were struck with soot, ash, and debre from the comet’s collision. The woman’s robe burned right off and her skin displayed signs of first degree burns.

‘WHAT?!’ cried the woman in disbelief, her skin already began regaining composure and structure, testament to her amazing regenerative abilities.

‘AR’KELOOOOOOOOOOOOOS!!!’ yelled Tabithna, both in defiance and succor.

By the courtyard's entrance to the jail cells stood a beaten and battered Kelekene using a plank of wood as a makeshift crutch while still donning broken chains on his writs and ankles. His gaze affixed on the now naked woman. His aura blazed with the fury of Hell itself.

To be concluded …

_________________
Talendos, the Shadow Raven
2.7 Expert, Soldier of Retribution, Assassin
"When you do something right, it's as if you didn't do it at all ..."

Echo
B-lister, Super Human, Brawler
"Bringing the noise!"


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