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» SERPENT TALES, Blazeh, Hara
Verridith
 Posted: Jun 14 2017, 03:12 PM
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Verridith

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PLAYERS INVOLVED:
@Verridith (Blazeh)
@Xikhara (Hara)

SETTING:
In the forest south of the city of Coia.

WEATHER: Stormclouds brew overhead, while thunder rumbles menacingly all around.

TIME: 1 day ahead! Before dawn.

CHARACTERS INVOLVED:
Arnus, (Blazeh), Xikhara (Hara)

--------------------
user posted imageuser posted imageuser posted image
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"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"
^
Verridith
 Posted: Jun 14 2017, 09:48 PM
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Verridith

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Little Razgriz had been agitated since the moment they left. Now, as the young elven man broke down their little camp, he had to quiet the tiny feylizard multiple times. The fey had perched on his shoulder, minuscule tail curled around Arnus' neck loosely, growling and flaring his little frills at everything that moved.

Arnus sighed, glaring at the small creature, as he tied together the last of the tent. Taking it and the rest of the camping supplies, he hid them in a small alcove at the base of a tree, hidden under a litter of leaves he had constructed the previous night. Rising, he turned silently to gather the white bow and quiver of arrows, and the sword, face grim and determined.

They would be fighting snakekind today. And hopefully freeing the children that they held... but fear plagued him, too. What if they failed? What if the kids got hurt?

His feylizard might be picking up on his fears, but he pushed the thought aside, instead fastening the strap that held the bow and quiver to his back in place. Once he had sheathed the sword at his side, feeling Lingolas' comforting presence touch his mind, he looked up and around for Xikhara... wherever she might be.

"I'm ready," he called softly, as the wind tugged at his cloak. A storm was brewing, and he pulled its hood over his light blond hair, green eyes flicking up to the sky. He dressed in the thin, noiseless armor of a ranger - but he knew should he be found and hit, there was nothing that would protect him from the shearing claws and fangs of his enemies.

Let's go. Please, Daama, Scylla, Time, whoever's watching over us... please let today go right...

--------------------
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"
^
Xikhara
 Posted: Jun 20 2017, 03:17 PM
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Xikhara

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Xikhara had been analyzing the tracks heading to and from the city a few groves away in her panther form, using both sight and scent to determine those that had passed recently. The prints were overwhelmingly snakekind, though they varies with the different subtypes. A very few humanoids had passed by here, though not recently; perhaps messengers from the Faction of hope.

And hidden beneath all the other smells, there was a very, very faint scent of children, tainted with unmistakable fear. It was almost gone; they had been brought here a long time ago, which meant that the snakes would have had time to do... whatever it was they did to the children that turned them.

At Arnus's call, the leopardess flicked an ear back, though she remained where she was, inspecting the last group of prints. Then satisfied, she snorted and turned back toward the camp and where the boy was waiting.

As she walked, she transformed, changing into a dark-skinned elf; on her head was a golden headdress, with two delicate chains looping down to hang at her left earlobe, and in her hand was a wooden staff, gold-tipped and intricately carved. She had left her usual sword behind at the Crystal Fortress; the elf had no intention of allowing the snakes to get that close to her in this fight, and thus the staff was better suited.

Cape flicking behind her, the princess strode into the camp, catching sight of Arnus and the fey almost immediately. "Good," she replied, golden eyes scanning the campsite. They would return here once they were done, and it was shielded from others by wards the elf had put up; however, she would still rather it be cleaned and ready to pack immediately if needed.

Satisfied, she turned back to Arnus. "There was a patrol that passed by very recently; four Dulne and a Riven. I don't think there will be another one for a while, so now's our best chance."

The elf glanced at Razgriz with a small smile. "You can come too, if you're quiet. We're going to try and keep the snakes unaware of our presence until the last possible moment. The less fighting we do, the more success we're going to have."

--------------------
My name is pronounced zik-HAR-ah, but feel free to call me Hara.
My characters and threads can be found in my tracker.
-blazeh was here x2-
^
Verridith
 Posted: Jun 21 2017, 06:22 AM
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Verridith

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Awards: 31



The young elf reached up to stroke the little feylizard as Razgriz gave her an offended look. Then, he uncurled his tail and held the small dragon in his wry l hands, earning a surprised squeak. "You can watch over us from the sky, or high up in the trees," he told Razgriz sternly. "But no noise. And only come down if I call you. Alright? Or I'll send you away."

The feylizard looked away and hissed his malcontent, but took off and disappeared into the branches nonetheless. Arnus sighed and looked back, nodding at Xikhara. "If it comes to fighting, we have to take out any riven and jarza first," he murmured. "They're the most dangerous. But if we aren't found..."

He shifted the weight of the bow and quiver on his back and smiled. "Let's go and see what we can find. I'll go through the tree tops, I'll be quieter there. I'll contact you via mindspeech if I see anything... you the same?"

--------------------
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"
^
Xikhara
 Posted: Jun 22 2017, 06:21 PM
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Xikhara

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"Let's hope it doesn't come to fighting. If the children are already turned, we'll get out and make a new plan; if not, go with what we discussed."

She shifted forms in a swirl of gold, eyes glowing softly. The staff she had held disappeared, to be recalled with her other form, if she were to take it again.

The elf briefly brushed her mind against Arnus' s, her anticipation clear through the contact. |Let's go .|

Silently the leopard padded through the trees, confident that Arnus would follow; her gait picked up until she was pacing through the forest at a good trot, keep9ng away from the main path. After all, she was rather recognizable.

--------------------
My name is pronounced zik-HAR-ah, but feel free to call me Hara.
My characters and threads can be found in my tracker.
-blazeh was here x2-
^
Verridith
 Posted: Jun 23 2017, 05:51 AM
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The elf nodded, watching her shift before vaulting up into the trees. As he followed her in the branches, his steps were silent, movement precise; his training as a ranger was paying off, and hardly a leaf rustled at his passage. He climbed higher as they neared, and opened his senses as Ferron had taught him.

They were approaching swiftly. On the very edge, Arnus crouched hidden in the boughs of an old oak, and looked out over a section that had been cleared of trees. Trampled by clawed feet and solid scales until the earth was barren underfoot, it was a large area with multiple nests and dens dug into one far side... And a large cage filled with twenty or so children on the other.

There were many serpents here. More than he anticipated. Five slept in the dens, while another four patrolled the perimeter; most were smaller breeds, though there were two jarza and one riven that he could see, which made him all the more nervous.

And the riven was curled around the cage of children, it's forked tongue scenting the air.

|Hara, that riven might be a problem,| he Sent. | It acts like they've had kids escape before...|

--------------------
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"
^
Xikhara
 Posted: Jun 26 2017, 12:13 AM
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Xikhara

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Awards: 16



Xikhara had spotted the snakes as Arnus had; she rounded the clearing, taking her place in the tall boughs of a nearby tree. She had, as well, noticed the large riven coiled around the children, who all seemed to be asleep; no doubt under some spell that the snakekind had conjured.

|I agree,| the elf replied. |We need to draw it out and away somehow, if we are to reach the children at all and attempt a rescue.|

The she-elf fell silent for a few moments, golden eyes watching the camp. |We need some sort of distraction, she said finally. |If we create a controlled fire nearby, perhaps the snakes will go to investigate,| Xikhara mused. |But that likely won't draw the riven out... We need some sort of bait...|

--------------------
My name is pronounced zik-HAR-ah, but feel free to call me Hara.
My characters and threads can be found in my tracker.
-blazeh was here x2-
^
Verridith
 Posted: Jun 27 2017, 05:21 AM
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The boy sat silently in the trees, studying the situation. His grey-blue eyes were sharp, and he noted that the riven was pointing outwards, it's head towards the woods and coils towards the children. Shifting his weight, the elf grinned, thinking on what they could do.

|I have an idea,| he Sent. |I can create things out of light. If you spark a fire, I can make... maybe a lightbeast pup - and play act as if it's getting away. While the others have to fight the fire, the riven will have to go get the fake pup on its own. What do you think?|

--------------------
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"
^
Xikhara
 Posted: Jun 27 2017, 10:55 PM
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Xikhara

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Xikhara smiled; Arnus had certainly been well-trained, and his idea was perfect.

|Very good,| the elf praised, already preparing to spark a fire. She focused on a swath of dry grass about a half-mile from the camp, close enough to raise concern yet far enough for the snakes to need to be gone for a while. She knew from her earlier exploration that there was plenty of green foliage around the browning stems that would cause smoke to rise quickly.

It took a minute amount of energy to cause the spark that lit the dried leaves, and to propel the fire that would spread to the rest of the plants. Not long after, a column of dark, thick smoke was visible to the trees, and the snakes raised their heads one by one, hissing at each other in confused and concerned tones.

A little bit more energy thickened the smoke, and soon the acrid smell of burning plants filled the air. After hissing amongst them a bit more, the snakes began to rouse themselves and move away from the camp, heading toward the disturbance.

|Soon,| Xikhara cautioned Arnus. |I'll make the fire bigger so they all head that way, and then it's your turn.|

--------------------
My name is pronounced zik-HAR-ah, but feel free to call me Hara.
My characters and threads can be found in my tracker.
-blazeh was here x2-
^
Verridith
 Posted: Jul 2 2017, 10:37 AM
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The prince waited patiently, until he saw the smoke cloud grow; alarm was beginning to spread through the group, and even the riven had lifted its large head. He moved silently down the branches until he landed on the ground, then moved away from the snakekind as they made their way, hurried and irritated, towards the still-growing fire.

She'd done more than well; he just hoped that they would be able to get out of here with the children before the fire got too out of control. He had seen wildfires in Evylon, and what they could do... but he couldn't think about that now.

Arnus let a spark of light ignite between his palms, and slowly shaped it into a small, glowing ball. He gave it a head and legs, a tail, small wings; then gave it animation in a mimicry of life, refining it just enough to look like a lightbeast pup if one didn't look at it too closely.

It wasn't perfect, but it would have to do.

Fueling it with light to make it grow to the proper size - two feet long from nose to tail tip - he let it loose and quickly scrambled back up into the tree, so he could see the riven and what it did. The construct could make no noise, so he took a few loose twigs and tossed them down towards where the light-made pup roamed, until the noise had at last drawn the attention of the large snake.

The effect was not as immediate as he'd hoped, but it worked nonetheless. With a hiss of distaste, the riven lifted itself several feet off the ground and began to slither towards the little construct; Arnus made it cower in fear, then run, much to the great snake's distaste. It would run until it was out of range of his magic, and then dissipate.

They had until then to get the kids.

|Hara, the riven is gone, I'm going in now!|

--------------------
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"
^
Xikhara
 Posted: Jul 2 2017, 01:21 PM
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Xikhara

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Xikhara had a plan for the fire; she would quench its thirsty flames before it grew too large, but until then, she would let it grow toward the camp, so that the snakes would be occupied long enough for the pair to free the children. Even as she watched, the fire grew larger; uncontrolled as it may seem, the green forest did not burn easily, and it was only the energy she was feeding it that allowed its licking flames to continue. Once she stopped feeding it, and created a block around it, the fire would die quickly.

As long as the snakes did not realize that, they would be okay.

|Good, I'll come help,| she responded, and jumped down from her branchy perch, landing silently on the ground below. The dark leopardess blended perfectly with the dappled forest floor, and she moved like a shadow through the trees, joining the prince in a matter of seconds.

|Come on, let's see if the children are under any influence|

~~~

Akrotiriazo had been waiting for what seemed like ever. The riven had said they would be moving camp soon, which he guessed was okay; since there was no getting out of this prison, at least the change would give him something more to do than just sit.

At least they'd let him keep Fylax. The cerberus puppy had kept him company since before they'd managed to catch him, while he had still been free, and blissfully alone. Not surrounded by these little, irritating, snotty kids. He wasn't an adult yet, no, but he was almost. Not that it had mattered to the snakekind, who had tossed him in here with the rest of them.

Most of his time here had been much of the same. It'd only been a few weeks, and the snakes were muttering something about Orochi all the time, and taking them to see their great snake king. Not that he sounded very great; the creature couldn't even move his lazy ass to come meet them.

And now the snakes had gone off somewhere to check out a fire, so they'd be stuck here for even longer with absolutely nothing to do. Even the riven had gone off, to chase after a ...

a lightbeast pup that hadn't been there twenty seconds ago?

Interest piqued, Akro lifted his head from his knees and looked around. Something was off, and Fylax's concerned panting only deepened the half-elf's interest. What was going on?

--------------------
My name is pronounced zik-HAR-ah, but feel free to call me Hara.
My characters and threads can be found in my tracker.
-blazeh was here x2-
^
Verridith
 Posted: Jul 4 2017, 02:29 PM
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Arnus slipped silently to the cage's edge; now that the riven was out of the way, he got a good look at it, and grimaced as he saw what it was made of. Large bones, barely cleaned; the twisted shape of a stripped wing... the destroyed remnant of a clawed hand. Had he not been witness to such atrocities long before now, he might have been sick.

The elven prince lifted a finger to his lips as the children gasped when they saw him. They quickly quieted, except for a very young human child who looked about to burst into tears. "I'm here to help you," he whispered, crouching outside the dragonbone bars. "Stay quiet, and we'll get you out."

His grey-blue eyes flicked to Xikhara, and he nodded. "Start taking apart the cage to where everyone can get out, please." He looked back, eyes flicking between each child. There were twenty-three in total. They looked alert, untouched, though scared and exhausted. Most were humanoid - many human, though there were a few elves and a small demon child marked by his catlike eyes - and a small handful of animalistic pups and cubs. Two gryphon siblings caught his eye, a baby dragon, a cerber-

Wait, who was that by the cerberus pup? Arnus' breath caught as recognition dawned in his eyes. "Akro?" he breathed, leaning back. "Akro, what the hell are you doing here?!"

--------------------
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"
^
Xikhara
 Posted: Jul 4 2017, 02:50 PM
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Xikhara

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Xikhara did as bidded, shifting in a swirl of gold to assume her normal form. She smiled at the children, and they quieted; the elven princess held a gentle aura about her that gave them a measure of comfort.

Electricity blossomed from her hands, but it didn't crackle or pop; rather, it was gentle, with a soothing light, and trailed up along the bony bars to begin dismantling the cage.

~

Akro stared at the figures walking closer, wondering what they wanted. He'd never seen them before, but perhaps the riven had sent them to guard the children in its absence. After all, after the first week, he'd stopped plotting to escape, and thus stopped caring who was or was not in the camp. He could not feasibly take himself and Fylax out, and the half-dragon was not about to leave the little cerberus pup behind.

However, when the approaching male spoke his name, Akro flinched and reached for his dagger, cursing under his breath when he remembered for the billionth time that the snakes had taken his weapons. How did this man know him, and who was the girl that accompanied him? Were they Faction? As far as the half-elf was concerned, the Faction were no better than the snakes, and he'd fight if they meant him or Fylax harm.

However, they seemed to lack any hostility; the woman was gentle, and the kids seemed to automatically trust her. The man... he held a strange familiarity, but Akro had certainly never seen him before. At least they were trying to free the children. That was better than the others that had come.

"Who are you, and how do you know my name?" the adolescent growled. Regardless of their intentions, Akro disliked that they knew him and he did not know them. Hostility was, of course, warranted in such a situation. "What do you want?"

--------------------
My name is pronounced zik-HAR-ah, but feel free to call me Hara.
My characters and threads can be found in my tracker.
-blazeh was here x2-
^
Verridith
 Posted: Jul 4 2017, 03:28 PM
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Surprise and hurt flickered in the prince's eyes, and he was momentarily taken aback. "You don't remember m..." Then, his voice faded, and he muttered a curse. "Of course you don't. Sorry; it's been a while and I changed a lot, ha! It's Arnus! Remember me?" He grinned and stood, eyes alight with joy at finding his old friend. "Jaerith changed how I look but it's still me! The last time I saw you, we were both children in Heartwood..."

Then, he quieted, glancing over his shoulder at the column of smoke, as if remembering what might happen if the snakes came back before it was time. "But - I'll tell you everything that happened later. We gotta get these kids out of here, Akro, before the snakes come back. Verri has a fortress on the other side of Vystriana and we're gonna get you all there."

He set to helping Hara dismantle the cage, taking out a short dagger and sawing at the thin ropes. "Can you help? We have to move fast!"

--------------------
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"
^
Xikhara
 Posted: Jul 4 2017, 03:44 PM
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Xikhara

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"Arnus? No fuc--uh, flipping way!" Akro glanced around at the children, relieved that they did not seem to have noticed his swearing, and then internally cursed at himself for caring.

Running a hand through his hair, the boy glanced back at his friend. "What happened to-- Oh, alright. A Fortress? I didn't know there were places free of the Faction here, I though you all moved to other realms."

He followed Arnus's lead, focusing on a single patch of rope to dismantle to clear a gap large enough for the children to fit through. After all, they didn't need to take the entire thing down, right?

Hara was likewise focusing on one section, and under her urging the children had backed away from the bony side of the cage, so that she was more freely able to maneuver her magic. Before long, one of the massive bones shattered under the flow of energy, and a second followed soon after, creating a large enough gap for the children to squeeze through.

"Quickly now, little ones," she murmured. "Come to me, and we'll get you far away from these mean snakes."

--------------------
My name is pronounced zik-HAR-ah, but feel free to call me Hara.
My characters and threads can be found in my tracker.
-blazeh was here x2-
^
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