by tooth & claw dragons

where darkness and chaos reign...
Welcome to the land of dragons and elves; demons and death. Here, you may weave tales of all creatures, great and small - magic is found in everything, and many worlds one can explore are open for discovery. By Tooth And Claw Dragons, often shortened to BTACD, is an original high fantasy role-play site with over eighty species and ten solid worlds, fifteen years strong. Freedom of creativity is boundless within the established lore, and member suggestions are not only accepted, but encouraged. We release new content monthly, and are always expanding our wondrous Realms. Come and play with magic, honor the great gods, and beware the balance that governs all...
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 the desert - d e c i d e s, Blazeh, Ghecho, JPG
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PLAYERS INVOLVED:
@Verridith (Blazeh)
@Ghecho

SETTING:
Deep in the Arcadian Desert.

WEATHER:
A sandstorm rages across the desert; it's very hot and dry.

TIME:
5 days behind! Mid-afternoon.

CHARACTERS INVOLVED:
Lyanti (Verridith), Graethus (Ghecho)

This post has been edited by Verridith: Apr 13 2018, 04:36 PM

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user posted imageuser posted imageuser posted image
user posted image
"you do know I have the worst memory in the high desert right"
"that's a lie, you just fill your memory with all things BTACD related"
^
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Damn this sandstorm!

A shimmering dragoness cursed under her breath as she made her way through the billowing sand; she couldn't fly in this, and her bright gemscales - fiery crimson, bright as the rubies she consumed to affect such a color - were covered in dust and grit. She was long-bodied and long-legged, with streamlined wings and smooth, straight horns. Each gemscale gleamed with reds, purples, and oranges; those across the tops of her wings and on either side of her face were flat and thin, appearing like feathers. Her eyes gleamed golden, squinted against the blowing sands.

She'd come out here for gems to fuel her collection; specifically, the deposits of diamonds and emeralds she knew she could mine in the great Arcadian Desert. But she had come across no small amount of trouble since she'd been here.

First, a sol'tera raiding party had attacked her, thinking to sell her hide to the Faction; she quickly sent them on their way. Then, a blasted long-winded d'jini had caught her in conversation for three long hours, and while he was interesting, he wouldn't leave her be. Now, a sandstorm. A god-forsaken sandstorm!

She growled and continued on, as more gusts of wind buffeted her and threatened to tear her wings from her sides. If she didn't keep them carefully folded, she could be dragged into the sky; and she had had enough of uncontrolled flights, living in Evylon's inhospitable regions for more time than she'd like to admit.

"Scylla curse this desert," the gemdrake finally snarled. She stopped and squinted about, seeking shelter. But all she could see was the sandstorm; and sand. So much scale-grating, goddamn sand. Snarling, she struck the ground in anger.

"Does this storm and desert ever end?!"

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user posted imageuser posted imageuser posted image
user posted image
"you do know I have the worst memory in the high desert right"
"that's a lie, you just fill your memory with all things BTACD related"
^
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Graethus


The sound of crunching bones and tearing flesh could not be heard over the unrelenting wind and sand of the massive sandstorm. Graethus counted himself lucky for running across a Sol'teran raiding party that had gotten lost in the sandstorm, he had just become hungry when it happened. Graethus quickly killed them all and began to feast. When he was killing them he noticed that many of them were already injured, and all were tired and sluggish. He also noted that there were far less than usual, the rest might have been killed during a raid. Graethus did not think too much longer on this matter, he was content with his meal. Upon finishing off the food on the ground, he began to pick those he impaled out of his spikes. Usually the bodies came out fairly easily with time, but sometimes they were a pain in the ass to remove. Graethus struggled to get one out of the spikes on his tail, well a part of one anyway.

"RRRHHGGGGG.... come... off... Annoy... me." he said as he was thrashing his tail about.

Graethus was trying to practice what little speech he knew, he was still not able to use complete sentences coherently yet. He could get ideas across, but he sounded primitive and beastly because of his deep, growling voice. If one were to listen to him they would think he was a stupid individual. However, if one were to watch him, they would find that he is quite clever, using all means of strategy to get the edge in combat or survival.

"RGGG... no... shit." He said as he accidentally flung the chunk of body clear over a dune, and got up to retrieve the piece. Though not before rolling around in the sand, making sure that all of the areas covered in his prey's blood got sand on them. Blood acted as a great adhesive for the sand, as it was kinda sticky, and when it coagulated it rooted the sand in place. He ceased his rolling and stood up with sand covering most of his body, in some places it was caked up and colored dark red from the blood. He did this for both camouflage and for extra resistance to the storm. Most dragons and other beings tried to resist the sand and would try to keep it off of them, Graethus knew better. The more sand one had on their body the less annoying the sandstorm became, the sand prevented the flying sand from striking bare skin, and got in-between scales holding them in place making sure none were damaged.

Graethus was comfortable in the sandstorm, he had after all entered one anytime he could, as it offered him protection from vision and from beings who would try to hunt him. He had gained somewhat of a reputation around Arcadian cities, as a terrible beast who would appear in the sandstorms of Arcadia, and slaughter any who could not escape. It was just one more danger in the Arcadia desert, though the sandstorms were dangerous enough already.

Graethus waded up the side of the dune, his bulky arms landing heavily with each step. Upon reaching the top, he was met with something unexpected. He could see the silhouette of a creature in the sandstorm, though he could not see the color, he could see the shape. The shape was familiar somehow, it reminded Graethus of himself vaguely. This was the first time that Graethus did not feel compelled to consume another being, he was instead overtaken with curiosity. He simply stood and watched as the creature walked, then stopped and thrashed about for a second, yelling something indiscernible through the raging storm.

Graethus could not contain himself, and leapt forward, opening his wings. The wind instantly filled his bulky wings and rocketed him forward with blinding speed. Graethus folded his muscled wings back in the air, and dropped heavily to the ground some twenty feet in front of the other creature. He slowly looked up and into the face of the other creature. It was like a living crystal, Graethus was astounded, but he did not show it, his features rarely changed from the usual menacing look. The creature was somewhat smaller than him, he was looking down a bit in order to look into its eyes.

"... rrhg... Who?"
^
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And then a giant thing jumped out at her. Wonderful.

The gemdrake scrambled back, hissing like a startled cat; she mantled her wings and bared her fangs, scales flashing beautifully in the shimmering light of the multiple suns. But the gemdrake's expression quickly turned to disgust, and she recoiled with a scowl. A dragon - a damn dragon, that's all this creature was. Worse, it was covered in bloody mud, sand, and grit, and the smell...

"Don't you know how to bathe?" she spat, lifting a forepaw in disdain. "You're covered in... in... ugh! Get away from me, you filthy thing!"

But Lyanti didn't miss how much larger the dragon was, nor the spiked armor that protected his back, neck, and tail. If this... creature... decided to attack her, she wouldn't have much of a chance if the fight turned physical. She fell silent, watching him, tail flicking back and forth. Then, she decided to answer his question - after all, such a creature couldn't be terribly intelligent. He wouldn't know who she really was.

"My name is Lyanti," she hissed, eyes narrowing, with a sigh. "What might a great, lumbering oaf like you be called?"

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user posted imageuser posted imageuser posted image
user posted image
"you do know I have the worst memory in the high desert right"
"that's a lie, you just fill your memory with all things BTACD related"
^
  Quote
"... Bathe?... No Water..." Graethus didn't like bathing, even when he got the chance to, he usually wouldn't unless he really felt like he needed one. He watched the odd sparkling creature, the sandstorm made her shine less, but she still reflected enough light to hit Graethus in the eye with a beam. He blinked the momentary blindness away, and continued watching her. The creature seemed vey upset. "It must not like sand." was the thought that passed through Graethus' mind.

This creature looked like a crystal, like the ones that Graethus knew they were standing on. Graethus liked to dig in the sand, he would dig to where the sand stopped then continue further. He would almost always find many rocks that glittered just like this Creature. Graethus had more than a few questions to ask... now he just had to figure out how to ask them. Then he heard the Creature speak it's name, then ask for his.

Struggling to get the words together and the sounds out, he said,"Ly... Ly... Lyan, Lyanti........ Is Graethus. Do... you come from... Under the sand?... What is Oaf?", then Graethus watched the gem drake with active curiosity.
^
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What a horrible, stupid, disgusting creature. What did I do to deserve this misery? Damn the gods!

Lyanti watched him angrily, but folded her wings. At least he was providing a sand-block, if a foul-smelling one. "Under the sand?" she questioned irritably. "What do you mean, you big brute, under the-"

Then, it hit her. The gemdrake gasped, flicking her tail in surprise. "You know where the mines are? Tell me, you great... oaf." She'd have to think that one through if she wanted his help. "I mean, kind Graethus. Please, show me to the mines at once. I must restock my crystal supply immediately."

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user posted imageuser posted imageuser posted image
user posted image
"you do know I have the worst memory in the high desert right"
"that's a lie, you just fill your memory with all things BTACD related"
^
  Quote
"Mines?... Do not know where... Mines is."

Graethus thought for a moment, his expression puzzled. Then Lyanti said crystals, and he became even more confused; his expression soured. Graethus was slightly annoyed that this... Lyanti, wasn't making any sense. Graethus stretched his back and moved his tail with slight irritation, causing a layer of sand to fall away from his body. His spikes now more visible, he said,

"But... You are... Crystals."

Graethus had a bit of an epiphany, after the sand fell off of his body. His expression immediately lightened and he smiled, baring razor like teeth. It made sense, Graethus was covered in sand, and Lyanti was covered in crystals. Therefore, Lyanti needed more crystals, just like he needed sand. Graethus wished that he understood more of what Lyanti was saying, he was sure that he could learn fairly quickly.

"Wait here... I get Crystals."

Graethus then began to dig, straight down, throwing sand everywhere for a couple of seconds, before becoming completely submerged in the sand. Graethus dug at an unnatural rate, and did not leave a hole, instead he sort of wormed through the ground quickly. He struck the rock within a couple of minutes, and continued further to find the crystals. He broke into a cavern filled with emeralds. Graethus began breaking them from the wall of the cavern, and putting them into his mouth. Once full, he dug out through the side of the cavern, then began worming his way back to the surface. He moved like a fish through water, and hit the surface in no time.

Graethus had resurfaced mere inches away from one of Lyanti's back feet. His head came out first, then one bulky arm emerged from the sand right before the other arm. He slowly pulled the rest of his body out of the ground, sand pouring away from his body the whole time. With his horns and glowing red eyes, he looked like some kind of devil emerging from the sand. Lyanti had moved away from him, so he moved closer. Graethus opened his mouth and dropped a size-able quantity of emeralds into the sand. Graethus then looked at Lyanti, and grinned.

"I can... get more."

Graethus realized that this was his chance to learn how to speak better. He would not let this chance escape him. The sandstorm still raging, his face returned to his usually grumpy expression.

"Teach me language."

This came out more as a command, than a question, though Graethus did not really know the difference.
^
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The dragoness had scrambled out of the way and watched him with a disgusted expression as he emerged - one that only intensified as she watched him spit out emeralds from his mouth. Covered in saliva, old blood and bits of who-knows-what, the rough gems were nothing like what she had come for.

Then, she heard him command her to teach him, and instantly bristled. Her feather-gems lifted in sudden indignation, and she pulled one forepaw closer, lip lifted as her face twisted. "How dare you use that tone with me," she spat. "I won't teach you, you great oaf! Just look what you've done to these beautiful gems! They're covered in... in filth, I can't eat them like that!"

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user posted imageuser posted imageuser posted image
user posted image
"you do know I have the worst memory in the high desert right"
"that's a lie, you just fill your memory with all things BTACD related"
^
  Quote
Graethus did not really understand what "tone" he had taken from Lyanti, he did not know what a tone was. All he had done was give her some green rocks, and she seemed to be angered. Graethus was not amused with the result of his request, and she seemed to dislike his gift. Graethus' expression turned angry, from a mixture of confusion about words and displeasure with the way Lyanti was acting. He pushed sand over the emeralds, which were already almost fully covered from the sandstorm, and snarled with anger.

"I don't know what... Oaf is, and you will not teach me... But you want to... take... crystals... from my home... You... DARE to steal from ME."

Graethus stood tall and shook his head, standing at least ten feet above the gemdrake. He was very annoyed with this creature, Lyanti. Graethus held a fraction of his initial curiosity about Lyanti, he still wanted to learn language and also wanted to know if there were many more like him in the world. His first impression of Lyanti was that she was intelligent, more than the average Sol'tera at least. But he was re-evaluating this first impression.

"You are not smart enough... to teach... where can I find... one who can?" He said as he lowered his head once again.
^
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Now the dragoness was angry. Somewhat unnerved, but angry all the same. After all, he was much, much larger... but there was principle to hold here, and Lyanti could not let that go.

She stared up at him, lips lifted in a sneer, baring her delicate fangs. "I am far smarter than you," she hissed, lifting one paw. "And if I have to sear it into your pitiful little brain, I will."

A minuscule portal opened, shimmering black, no more than an inch wide at most. From it, she delicately pulled a small gemstone, before the portal vanished - a shimmering diamond, glowing with light, held between two of her claws. Suddenly, she snapped it up in her jaws and swallowed it, and the light vanished between her teeth.

But then, her red scales began to glow - and glow brightly. The red colors seemed to melt away into transparent crystal, as the scales began to smooth and longer, curved spikes erupted from her back and neck. Her horns twisted into twists and turns, and her golden eyes gleamed with light.

Instead of a dragoness of brilliant ruby, she was now a dragoness of living diamond.

"Come, sweety," she crooned, crouching with her wings mantled. "Let us teach you a lesson in manners."

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user posted imageuser posted imageuser posted image
user posted image
"you do know I have the worst memory in the high desert right"
"that's a lie, you just fill your memory with all things BTACD related"
^
  Quote
"You are not smart... enough to teach..."

Graethus' interest in Lyanti was reignited when he watched her eat a crystal and begin to change colors. She began to glow, with a shimmering light. Graethus had seen similar from certain creatures, all of which were part of Graethus now. They were creatures of the light element, and would often fight back with odd fire and disorienting flashes. Graethus had some experience with these creatures. His spikes would mitigate most if not all damage from every element but water and ice, so he was not afraid.

"All I want... is to know what... Oaf means... and Manners."

Graethus might not understand all of what Lyanti was saying, but he could understand what her body said. Her posturing was very aggressive, and she was almost sure to attack him. Graethus readied himself for an attack, ready for both magic or physical, or a combination of both. He lowered his shoulder, and pointed it towards Lyanti. Now from Lyanti's perspective she should see mostly spikes, save his face and certain portions of his arms.

"You are... like a bird... pretty feathers... bird brained."
^
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The prepubescent black knight squire of Leartes trudged through the desert on foot - his feet currently like that of a camel, having drained one's essence in order to better perform this mission - a small errand involving a trek across the desert.

The child's form was covered by ristellian garbs - a facemask covering his nose and mouth, and a cloth being tied around his forehead in order to keep the sand out of his hair and neck and whatnot, oversized off-white cloak covering him - also covering his tentacle arm, as to not alarm any travelers he came across.

His form had also adapted the camel's humps for this trip - having placed them on his back, covering them with the spores from a certain volatile mushroom. These explosive spores also guarded the package he was to transport. Any would be bandit would get a set of caustic spores exploding in their face upon drawing close enough.

It was then he came across the standoff between the gemdrake and the uncouth dragon. He did not bother hiding his presence - he had nothing to hide, and his eyes calmly shifted from one to the other, with an inhuman tranquility about him.

"...pardon. Is everything alright between you two? Your respective musculature are tensed, indicating heightened emotion, among several other symptoms."

Speech still needed work.

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^
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The diamond dragoness was about to leap up and over the great beast, light shimmering brightly from her claws as she took wing; but the sudden appearance of the child - if one could even call it that - made her pause and hover on the air. She stared at the small creature, aghast, for such... advanced verbiage should not be capable by an individual so young or small.

"And who are you to stop us, child?" she spat indignantly, turning her glare from the one on the ground to the monstrous dragon she wanted to slice into pieces. "This great oaf needs a lesson in manners. And personal hygiene. Have you looked at this monster? He reeks of blood!"

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user posted imageuser posted imageuser posted image
user posted image
"you do know I have the worst memory in the high desert right"
"that's a lie, you just fill your memory with all things BTACD related"
^
  Quote
Graethus had not noticed the child until it spoke, he raised his wing and shoulder from the ground, and looked at it. The child sounded quite intelligent, he used words that sounded complex. Graethus was also interested in the child because he smelled like some kind of fish, partly anyway. Graethus huffed, waked over to the child-thing, and then stood in the way of the storm, shielding the child-thing from almost all of the sand. He then pointed to Lyanti, and spoke:

"Lyanti... will not... tell me what... Oaf means... can you teach.. me language?... What is Oaf?"

Graethus had once again lost interest in Lyanti, he was basically ignoring her now, he did hear her saying something, but it was not of concern. He shook some excess sand off of his back, and Waited for the Child-thing's response.
^
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The little boy's eyes showed no fear. ...or really anything at all - the eyes seemed to lack proper pupils - the void where they should have been opened up into empty irises.

"The air around this other dragon does smell of a ferrous liquid, yes, though I fail to understand how this warrants violence as a method of imposing enlightenment.” Regardless if the remark gave offense or not, the creature’s mannerisms were a void unto themselves - neither good nor bad, just a complete lack of awareness.

“Oaf. Derogatory term for those lacking in intelligence, cognitive processing capabilities, or the abstract construct known as wisdom. Tends to refer to an individual who has dense, bulging musculature and-or has the appearance and mannerisms of its synonym, the brute.”

As he recited the definition of the insult, his form was unnaturally still. His gaze did not deviate - simply staring soullessly ahead. It was as if he recited it from a book.

“Are there any other inquiries or ways I can be of service? I serve Leartes as one of his Black Knights and am to help the local populace with issues that require violence against hostile forces which threaten them."

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