Guinevere runs around Tispers, to find an opening at the monster around the massive Half-Dragon. She stops to shoot at the monster, but her ray streams past it, creating a blast mark on the ground next to it.
The Linsemptus Scout, realizing its peril, cartwheels around and then dives under Tisper's legs. It then rushes forward to its chosen target: Guinevere. Taking its appendage, it forms the now-familiar serrated edge and slashes.
The blade cuts into Guinevere, not as deep as it could have been, but deep enough. The white rift appears, but fails to form completely, and so vanishes.
Tispers chases after it to get in another hit. He chops at it again.
With an unearthly shriek, the Linsemptus Scout is cleaved in half, and dissipates into space. "What's that?" Tenee asks as she dismounts, and picks up a nearly transparent object.
"Wow, you have a good eye" Okron comments.
A sudden tear is heard, as though the fabric of reality was torn, and before your very eyes a white gash in the shape of an erratic lightning bolt appears. As quickly as it came, a whoosh sound is heard and the bolt vanishes, leaving Richard in its place.
"It is something important, a crystal, though we have no idea what it does," Tispers explains. He holds out a hand to her, "I would like to hang onto them; I'm interested in what they will do."
"Hmm... wait, can I examine it first?" Tenee asks, holding the transparent octahedron to her eye.
"Be my guest," Tispers replied.
The first thing Richard sees as he returns to the world is, other than the stone walls of another city, Guinevere handing Tispers a crystal, "Here, I found this one back after the last battle." Her eyes were back to normal already, as if she had never wielded the energy.
"This is exactly the same as the ones Rii showed me, although she had a few other ones..." Tenee murmurs, and rotates it carefully, so that it catches the light.
Taking a quick look to both sides and seeing no immediate threat, Richard rejoins with the group. He notices the crystals being handed around and asks, "What are those?"
"Rii told me that they're fragments, little pieces of keys." Tenee answers.
"I don't know" Okron replies “the Linsemptus dropped it”
"If they are to be a key then, it would be good to find what it opens," Tispers says, taking the crystal from Guinevere.
"These are the small fragments." Tenee continues, "Then there are larger fragments, and then there's the actual keys themselves."
"I can only imagine the stronger ones leave behind large fragments," Tispers commented.
"So if we kill the Linsemptus, we get the key fragments, which we might need anyway? Sounds like a bonus to me." Guinevere notes. "Now let's get into the city and have a look around."
Tenee hands the crystal to Tispers, "Well, my pack has a lot of space in it, so if you need another place to keep them, I can put them in there." She says as she puts her bow into the bag.
"If Linsemptus are around the city, we won't want to stay long; it is possible they intend to attack it." Tenee muses.
"As horrible as that sounds, I'm not obligated to stick around to protect it, so we'll spend the night and leave first thing in the morning," Tispers notes to them, "we should find lodgings for the night."
After spending some time in thought Richard steps forward, "If each Linsemptus has a shard that means that we won't be able to have the entire key until we have defeated every Linsemptus, am I right?" he asks Tenee.
Tenee laughs, "You don't know what you're talking about. Rii had a couple of the actual keys; they only take a number of shards and some knowledge to make."
Richard frowns slightly showing his disappointment, not from being wrong but rather from having fewer enemies to fight.
"Is it a big Puzzle and we have to assemble it?" Okron asks
"It would take quite a while to take out all the Linsemptus..." Tenee adds, "They seem to be endless in numbers... or at least that's what several rumours say."
Tenee frowns, "It's not so much a puzzle as it is you just need a number of the crystals to fuse into another shape... I can't explain it; I can only do it like how Rii showed me."
"Well, if we should get moving along already, we don't know when another Linsemptus will show up to attack us, let's get inside the city walls, however much that may help." Guinevere suggests.
Tenee nods, and enters through the gate.
"I think we should stay and help as much as we can" Okron suggests.
Tenee calmly stops, "You don't know what you're up against, do you?" She asks, "You've only seen the Linsemptus Scouts; the Foot Soldiers of the Linsemptus can do about four times as much destruction as a Scout, and if this city is attacked, they'll be the ones doing it."
"Don't be a hero Okron, this won't be our place to die, we'll leave before they come to attack, this town is as good as gone, if you want to do something, evacuate the citizens," Tispers suggested.
"Well if that is all we can do then so be it, tomorrow we will evacuate the city" Okron states.
"What are we going to do then?" Richard asks angrily, "Nothing, and leave the town to its grim fate?”
"Tomorrow may be even too late Okron; the Linsemptus could strike with in the hour for all we know." Guinevere says.
"Tispers is right; at our current strength we can't do much, so we must get stronger to help as much as we can" Okron replies "And do what we can to destroy the Linsemptus.”
"What do you suggest we do then?" Richard repeats angrily.
"We evacuate now" Okron says firmly.
Guinevere turns on Richard, "I don't think you're doing anything to help, so be quiet while we decide what to do!"
"Whether or not you're going to do something, I'm going to at least help Okron. A message is the least we can do." Richard says stubbornly.
Tenee, with a calm demeanour that seems very out of place for her apparent age, says solemnly, "We can warn the city. After that the choice is yours to stay or leave. If you stay, it is likely you'll die. If you die, you won't be able to continue to destroy the Linsemptus."
"How do we know a message will get around to people?" Guinevere asks, maintaining her temper. "This city is pretty big and one notice might get ignored."
"I've lived here my entire life; I can talk to the paladins and get them to send out a message." Okron replies
"One official would be enough," Richard persists, "We would not be the only one spreading the word."
"Ok Richard go to the clerics and tell them to evacuate the city and I will go to the paladins so we can spread the word as fast at possible" Okron orders
"I'll go find Tispers, we can't stay here tonight, and we have to get moving as soon as the citizens are warned" Guinevere says.
Okron proceeds to locate the paladin headquarters from his memory. In the meantime, Richard goes to find the church, which would be difficult to miss. Guinevere and Tenee however don't seem to be able to find Tispers. But one thing that is slightly unnerving is the lack of people in the city.
Nina growls and Tenee nods, and says, "Guinevere, maybe I was wrong; perhaps the attack isn't later, but already something that occurred."
"I know why we didn't realize it at first, nothing is destroyed, because the Linsemptus just float through objects," Guinevere says, as the realization sinks in.
Nina growls again, but Tenee shushes her. "We have to go; we cannot stay here."
"Then we have to find Tispers even faster now, Okron and Richard will find out soon enough."
Speaking of which, Okron and Richard find their destinations, and of course, devoid of people to receive the message.
In fact, Okron sees the dead body of the person that would have gotten the message.
Before him is the body of a paladin, by recognition of the emblem in their armour. Their armour is un-dented, unscratched even, but the body of the person was split in half lengthwise, as though something tore straight through them, flesh and bone. The tearing gives the body a bizarre appearance, even unearthly, and a pool of blood lies underneath the body. In the person's hands are a shield and sword; they died fighting.
Upon reaching the central square, Tispers finds a whole legion of dead paladins arranged around the central monument.
"Disgusting, how weak, it is a shame we couldn't have saved them," Tispers says out loud. He then turns to look away in order to see if he can see any of the others around from where he stood.
Okron turns away and says "May your soul rest in peace" tracing the emblem on his armour then walking out the door "there is nothing else I can do" heading out back to his friend’s last known ware bouts "I will avenge you my 'brother'”
The party congregates at the central square, slightly at a loss of what to do.
As Richard approaches central square he quickens his pace to meet with the others, "I think something’s wrong here, I searched the entire temple and didn't see a single person maybe they already lef-" He is cut off as he sees a body lying in front of him. Stopping completely his mouth opens wide as if to say something but all that comes out is, "no..."
"It would seem that they have already come through here, however we can't be too sure if there were any survivors, we should look around, it should be safe if they already attacked, however be careful," Tispers began to plan, "we'll split into groups of two, search for trap doors, fake walls, the sorts, see what you can find, if no one comes up, will stock up with their remaining supplies."
Tenee shakes her head, "If you mean the fake side in that monument, I have my doubts; Nina said she smells a lot of blood."
"These Linsemptus are monsters and we have to eliminate them" Okron says trying to stay calm.
Nina suddenly hisses and Tenee goes pale, "We have to go! Now!"
Guinevere remains silent throughout this exchange, until Tenee's warning, "Get!" she shouts before anyone even has time to react to it.
Richard whips out his dagger looking around attentively.
Okron starting to run "What is it?"
"Go north! This way!" Tenee shouts, and mounts on Nina as they race towards the north gate.
Richard races towards the north gate
"Come on Tispers!" Guinevere shouts, having turned back before she ran far.
Tispers growls with his arms crossed as he closes his eyes and drops his head. "Dammit," he muttered. He then turned and races to the front. He eagerly runs as fast as he can, for not wanting to fight a large amount of those annoying creatures.
Okron goes in a full out sprint towards the North gate
Guinevere glances over her shoulder out of fear mixed with curiosity.
Turning back, Guinevere clearly sees a blade coated red with dripping blood as it is swung violently by the humanoid Linsemptus. Unlike the fragile Scouts, this Linsemptus has a form appearing like that of a very muscular humanoid, and even its fluidity seems more like live veins pumping a vile blood through its body. In its other hand is a large round disc, a shield. The body is androgynous, but its eyes glare, glinting red in the light, even in spite of its varying colours. It swings its blade again, negligently, whipping off more of the blood collected on the blade.
The party reaches the North gate, and bypasses it quickly.
After another moment of running Tenee shouts, "This should be far enough; it would've caught us by now if it was chasing us."
Guinevere's chest heaves under the shortness of her breath. "They've stopped?" she chokes out eventually.
"It didn't give chase to begin with; we're hardly worth the effort in its mind." Tenee says bitterly.
Guinevere releases a sigh, despite her shortness of breath
"If you’re done resting, lets hurry up and go," Tispers snapped, "what a frightening monster, seeing us as worthless." He continued up the road.
"I guess that one rumour was true." Tenee mutters to herself, "Oh, we don't want to go that way."
Tispers stopped and waited for her to give him a direction.
"That way goes up to the Temple; I picked this direction because I figured it wouldn't give us chase if it thought we were going to go straight to the temple where a lot of others are. We want to go that way." She says, pointing in a north easterly direction.
The direction pointed to has no path to follow, and goes straight into the forest.
Tispers looked in the direction she was pointing and then let out a deep sigh, and then he walked into the forest without a second thought.
"Isn't that dangerous? Traveling without a path? Couldn't we get lost?" asks Guinevere, having never really been outside the city before.
"If you’re afraid, we can always just leave you here, with that thing back there," Tispers told Guinevere as he went into the forest.
Having finally recovered from the sight of the bodies Richard says, "Maybe so, but trying to take all of those on would be measurably more dangerous."
"You've seen me in the city, right?" Tenee says with a laugh, "You'd be like that here, but here is the city to me, if I continue the analogy; just follow me."
Tenee and Nina take the lead again though the pathless forest.
"We'll want to avoid anymore contact with those things, keep your eyes sharp," Tispers advised them, choosing to follow Tenee instead of creating his own path.
The pace is considerably slower this time than when you ran to the Cliffs of Venerro; Tenee and Nina are going at a walking pace, keeping aware of the surroundings around them.
"I don't want to give you the wrong idea," Tenee says carefully, "But there was only one of them there; it didn't take out all the paladins on its own, but it was the one chosen to do their last objective."
"What was their last objective then?" Guinevere asks
"The rumour was that every time the Linsemptus attacked a city, there'd be one left to finish the job. That job was the eradication of the entire city's populace, including those in hiding." Tenee continues.
"The Samplers find the weak points, the Scouts survey, the Foot Soldiers attack, the Watchers locate the survivors, and the Executioners or Foot Soldiers finish them." Tenee says aloud.
A sudden tear is heard, as though the fabric of reality was torn, and before your very eyes a white gash in the shape of an erratic lightning bolt appears, exactly in the same spot as Richard. As quickly as it came, a whoosh sound is heard and Richard and the bolt vanish.
Tenee leads the group carefully through the forest. However, the group cannot quite shake off the feeling like they're being watched...
Okron glances over his shoulder in anticipation.
Tenee glances around, suddenly freezes, and then takes a sharp intake of breath, "We need to hide."
"That might be difficult," Tispers replied. Not only was he completely different color from the forest, he was rather big and bulky.
Guinevere, silent before, now glances around for some cover to get behind.
"At the very least, we need to lose it." Tenee says adamantly, "Although, it's probably seen us." She pauses, continuing to walk ahead for a moment, "Alright, I'll try to lose it, then double back here; you try to stay hidden."
Tispers quickly looks around and tries to hide by making good use of a bush.
Tenee and Nina suddenly dart through the trees ahead. The prickling sensation of something watching you vanishes.
About two minutes later, Tenee and Nina can be seen creeping up back to where you're hiding. "OK, I think I lost it."
Tispers stands up.
"Good" Okron says coming out of hiding, “Now then where to now?"
"Everywhere we go we are stalked by some form of danger or another, was that another of the Foot Soldiers that you led off?" Guinevere says as she comes out from behind a tree.
Tenee can't help but laugh at the question, "Oh my goodness, no. If it was a Foot Soldier, it wouldn't have bothered hiding and we'd be in a very bad position. It was a Linsemptus Watcher."
"That explains the creepy feeling at least," Tispers comments.
"Well, they do look like eyes, and their job is to watch potential dangers." Tenee continues, "They're not instructed to attack, but... well... it'd be fairly hard to fight one."
"Why would that be?" Tispers asks
"You were looking for it back there, right?" Tenee says, pointing in the direction behind the group. "It wasn't there... it was up there." She says, pointing above, beyond the tree canopy and toward the fractured sky.
"I think that answers your question." Tenee says, "It can fly."
Guinevere ponders the thought of fighting a flying enemy. She would be the only one who could reach it unless it came down, and if it could attack from far also, it would be safe from most of the party.
"I think we should get a move on as quickly as possible, but where is our destination? Do we know where we are trying to go?" she asks aloud
"We've gotten the attention of the Linsemptus; if we go to a city, they'll beat us there, with drastic consequences." Tenee says solemnly.
"How annoying, we need to find a place to rest, we won't be able to continue on if we keep going like this," Tispers snarled.
"It's a good thing I came along then." Tenee says, "There's a temple not far from here. Well, it's not so much a temple from what you'd think; we druids refer to it as a temple. It's not going to be like an inn to you, but it will be enough."
"We'll be safe there then? You sure it hasn't ended up like the city?" Guinevere asks.
"The Linsemptus wouldn't attack it; there are no people that live there." Tenee replies, "There could be a couple Scouts around it though, so we'll have to be careful."
"It is better than nothing, let’s go there then." Tispers suggests.
"Speaking of which..." Tenee says, "Let me see your wounds."
"My wounds aren't that bad." He looks at his body and lifts his armour a bit to make sure that he was right about that.
Tenee walks over and examines Tispers. "I'm afraid I'm not as skilled as Rii when it comes to healing, but I can do a little bit." With that, Tenee reaches into her backpack and pulls out a strange flower. This flower's petals are a variety of colours, with shades of purple, blue, pink, gray, orange; all the colours of the rainbow. Tenee then murmurs something in an eloquent language, drawing light to the flower, and then it hovers to Tispers. The light mends the cut and bruised skin, and then fades.
Tispers notices that the pain had gone from his body and that he could no longer feel any of his wounds, though he was still slightly sore.
Tenee gently places the flower back inside her bag, "Well, we should go this way then." She says as she remounts on Nina and heads southeast.
Eventually the group reaches a section of the forest that doesn't appear that different than what they already passed, "The temple is just ahead; I'll take a look for the Linsemptus." Tenee says.
"We'll wait here, if you get into trouble, run back to us and we'll help take care of any that are chasing you," Tispers says boldly.
Okron draws his swords.
Tenee walks back after a moment, "I only see one, but since they're guarding the temple, I think there should be more."
Tenee beckons for the group to follow and the forest opens up into a slight clearing, with an immense tree in the center of the clearing. The base of the tree is carved into the depiction of a doorway, as well as an elaborately decorated exterior.
The clearing looks deserted, but Tenee pulls out her bow and fires straight by the doorway etched in the tree. The Linsemptus hidden there jumps out of the way (and into view).
"So you saw it too, huh?" Okron says charging at it.
Okron's blade passes through the Linsemptus Scout's form without resistance or effect.
Another Linsemptus Scout darts from the left side of the clearing up towards the group. "I knew there was more than one!" Tenee shouts.
Tispers goes up after the new one that had appeared, drawing his blade as he rushes towards it. He chops down at it.
Like Okron's blade, Tispers' fails to meet any substance to destroy.
The Linsemptus Scout that was by the tree's door forms the yet another serrated blade and attacks Okron.
The blade slices into Okron's chest, forming a white rift. Suddenly, an immense amount of pain sears through Okron's body, despite the relatively small cut, making it impossible to do anything.
Realizing Okron's peril, Tenee hastily runs to the side to get a clear shot, but the arrow flies wide of its target.
A third Linsemptus Scout runs up from the right.
Guinevere charges up her eldritch energy and fires at the monster assaulting Okron, hoping to save him from the same fate she would have suffered not long ago.
The Linsemptus Scout gets blasted right in the torso, knocking it back slightly.
Posted on 2008-06-15 at 05:00:08.
Edited on 2008-06-15 at 05:02:45 by Reralae
Nenmar - Day 2 - Guarded Temple - Death and Rebirth
The Linsemptus Scout on the left forms its own serrated blade and slashes at Tispers.
The Linsemptus Scout merely cuts Tispers on the shoulder, and the white rift leaves no effect.
Tispers brings his blade down, but the Scout dodges to the right of the blade.
The Scout in front of Okron, however, takes this opportunity to finish his opponent. Reaching back with its appendage, it forms almost a drill shape.
The Linsemptus Scout dodges under the dark blast shot by Guinevere, and impales Okron with its drill-like appendage.
The Linsemptus Scout strikes true, impaling straight through Okron's heart. It withdraws the drill-like appendage, and Okron's body falls limply to the ground.
Tenee's mouth drops open, "No way... not again."
Tispers turns to look and see what is going on.
Tispers turns just in time to see the Okron's falling body.
Guinevere looks on in shock that Okron fell so easily, if only he hadn't been paralyzed, he would have been able to escape.
"Not again..." Tenee repeats, "I wasn't able to..."
Tendrils of light begin to form and swirl and spiral around the area, focusing on Tenee. Tenee's eyes are closed as she just thinks on her own past. The light concentrates on her, forming an intricate array of symbols and runes around her body.
This intensifies, and then there's an explosion of light.
The light rejuvenates everyone, but when the light fades, there's only one of the Linsemptus left, which was knocked prone from the blast (the one in front of Tispers). The others were apparently destroyed.
Tenee opens her eyes, "What just happened?" She asks, before collapsing on the ground.
Okron stands up holding his chest in fear, feeling it for holes "What just happened?"
"Wow what happened to me?" He says puzzled and light headed. Trying not to think about it he rushes off toward Tenee’s body
Okron kneels down and checks Tenee's pulse, and find that it's stable, but severely slower than a person in full health.
Guinevere is taken aback with shock, seeing Okron alive and moving right after being drilled through like those men and women in the town center of Restin. She tore her gaze off him to glimpse at the last scout. Her body recharged with energy that she let go of in awe, and skipped around behind the others for a clear shot.
With emotions running high, Guinevere's aim is slightly offset, and so her shot blasts the ground next to the Linsemptus.
The Linsemptus on the ground tries to move, but remnants of the light energy spark, stunning it out of its course of action.
Tispers raises his blade and drives it straight through the stricken Linsemptus on the ground. It gives an unearthly shriek, and dissipates.
Tispers closes his eyes to calm himself, and then he searches the ground for the objects that they might have left behind.
Guinevere rushes over to Okron and Tenee to see if they're alright, but mostly to see what happened.
Tenee appears unconscious; her pulse is stable, but she was obviously quite adversely affected by what she brought about.
"What happened?" Guinevere asks Okron.
The light released from the explosion earlier lingers upon the three crystals on the ground.
Tispers picks up the three crystals and stores them away.
Nina walks over to her fallen master/comrade, and sits beside Tenee.
"Don't worry Nina she'll be fine" Okron reassures the leopard.
"What happened?" Okron asks everyone.
"Tenee used a strange power," Tispers replies.
"It healed all of our wounds, even mine from this morning," adds the warlock.
Rii walks slowly into the clearing, and kneels down by Tenee.
"Convenient," Guinevere whispers to herself
Rii looks sharply at the young warlock, "Oh, I'm sorry, I guess I'm unwelcome then." She gets up, ready to leave. "Call it a mother's intuition, even if I'm only her adopted mother." She says before beginning to walk out of the clearing.
Tispers puts his sword away and ignores her; escaping away into the temple in hopes that Rii might not come after him to steal his key shards from him.
"I think you'd be a pretty bad mother to leave your adopted daughter because you're peeved off," Guinevere retorts.
"Oh?" Rii says, stopping, "Yes, you have a good point." She says, before returning to pick up Tenee, "Leaving her with you doesn't seem like such a good idea. Come on Nina."
"She wanted to come with us" Okron replies.
Guinevere is determined not to loose her temper and goes to follow Tispers, wherever he may have fled too.
"Is that so? I can only guess why." Rii returns, "She can come back to play with you later." Rii disappears into the woods without another word, Nina following her.
"Take care of yourself and her alright?" Okron says leaving
The door in the tree opens to a staircase leading down.
Luminescent fungi provide light, revealing the well carved wooden steps.
Reaching the bottom, you exit the tree and end up in a circular stone foyer. There is a wide set of double doors on the opposite side, with an inscribed circle at chest-height where they meet that has four keyholes.
There are no fungi in this room; upon the arching walls are several sets of torches, and there are four pillars evenly spaced within the room holding up the ceiling.
There are no carvings, just fine architectural detail.
Guinevere briefly wonders how the torches are kept going without maintenance, but she finds herself still too angry to care. "Well, I suppose without help, there is no further we can go, unless anyone cares to check underneath the doormat."
"You know, there is always more than one key for a keyhole," Tispers comments.
"We'll most doors aren't always locked either, might as well check to see if they really are locked," he adds. Tispers then goes to check the door to see if it is locked or not.
Despite pushing on the door with all his might, Tispers' exertion yields nothing besides the confirmation that the door is indeed locked; the doors don't even budge a nanometre.
Tispers stands back from the door and stares at it intently. "Looks like we have to break it down, unless someone has a key," he says.
"We could always look for one" Okron replies.
"Well I don't have enough patience to do that, so you may go look for one if you wish, I'll stay here," Tispers comments.
"We will have to sleep in watches if we can't get in, I'll volunteer for the first watch." Guinevere says.
Guinevere's former rage began to replace itself with a hint of fear. Her mind raced ahead of her, and before she could stop it, her own imagination was asking herself what would happen if she was left all alone in the temple at night.
"Alright, I'm going to break this thing down, stay back," Tispers mentioned to her. He drew his sword and held it in front of him. He then charged at the door, letting out a war cry. "Go down!" he yelled.
"I don't think you should do that!" Guinevere manages to shout out at the moment of impact.
Tispers stops himself before the door, but had already put a swing into it.
From the inertia Tispers attained, his blade jars against the door with the only effect of giving him a bad sprain in his hand, and a good bruise on the shoulder.
"Places like these usually find themselves under the influence of magical protection from the people who made it. This chamber could easily be made to crush or flood out any supposed intruders." Guinevere explains.
Tispers let out a sigh at sat down next to her. "If I had of known that I wouldn't have to have hurt myself from that; next time you should stop me earlier," he comments. He sets his blade down next to him and flexes his wrist, then crossing his arms and he closes his eyes. "If you’re taking first watch, then I'm going to sleep."
Despite willing herself to keep watch over the party as they slept, Guinevere can't help but to slowly grow tired. Then, when the sun finally passes beyond the horizon, the torches all die, and Guinevere's eyes close.
The sun rises, its warm rays slowly awakening the resting group below.
Suddenly, there is a light source nearby that shines brightly, as well as a melodic voice intoning words of healing. As quickly as it came, it disappears, and you can hear faint footsteps walking away.
Sable brings himself through force of will to his feet, throwing off the effects of the unconsciousness. He looks around to see the half-elf where she was when they were dragging the elf-child, though as an addition, the elf and human have both returned.
Charlet sits up and says "Good morning Sable!"
Ita stirs slowly, and sits up, rubbing her eyes.
Ignis rolls over on the grass. "I'm don't want to fight in the arena today, give me ten more minutes," she moans, half-asleep.
"Awake, Ignis, and you too, minstrel," Sable commands softly.
Ignis turned over and sat up. "Huh? Where am I? This isn't my warm comfy bed," she commented, a dreary look on her face.
Ita stretches, and then asks bitterly, "So, what are you going to do with me now?"
Feni yawns, but otherwise doesn't move from by her companion.
"I almost want to fall back asleep again to meet up with that other Elven child," Sable remarks as he waits for the others to rise.
"What a weird dream huh? Wait I hope that doesn't happen here too, too many weird things have been happening lately, oh what to do?" Ignis complains, now awake.
Ita gets up and sighs, "Sorry, I'm still rather irritated that you still dragged me here."
"Oh but nothing happened right?" Ignis points out. She jumps to her feet and looks at Ita as if she were inspecting her on the spot. "You look fine anyways; you shouldn't be such a worry wart."
Feni actually growls at Ignis' comment.
The 'minstrel' obviously was not ready to get up when Sable called. Opening and closing his eyes to get used to the light he says, "What’s the problem?”
"Well you are the one who ran" Charlet comments
Ita turns to her companion, "She doesn't agree with you... but... it was mother? Are you sure?" She asks sceptically at Feni.
"At the very least," Ita returns, "Tenee and I are twins, so why would we be in different states unless there was someone that did do something about it already?"
"I don’t know, don't ask me, I'm not THAT smart, besides, what matters is that you’re ok, and not dead like you said you would be, so relax a little alright?" Ignis replies. She then shakes her head at Ita and walks away. "Let’s just move on ok?"
"Well, whatever." Ita says, and sighs, "The fact is Tenee would've helped you, and so I'll help you. Alright?"
Charlet finally stands up and starts to follow Ignis.
"That is helpful," Sable says, "I thank you personally for your cooperation."
"We'll be going to the same place in the end," Ita adds, "So, as long as I help you..."
"Ok, come on before we lose sight of Ignis" Charlet says in a hurry.
"Right." Ita says, mounting on Feni and following.
Everyone's sight suddenly becomes distorted, as though the area was overlaid with visible noise. Pieces of the world seem to vanish and reappear in a slightly different spot, that is, except for the Viis-shaped hole that suddenly appears. As vision returns to normal, the hole is filled visibly by what would be seen behind it.
The group eventually finds themselves facing the west gate of Tenmi; the guard of the gate looks at the group without much interest, keeping an eye out for the danger of the Linsemptus.
Posted on 2008-06-15 at 05:16:03.
Edited on 2008-06-15 at 05:17:08 by Reralae
The guard suddenly stands tall, alerted, and bellows, "Scout sighted!"
A faint and slow cracking is heard, with a myriad of spider web cracks appearing all over the area. Poor Charlet is caught in the midst of all the cracks, and she instinctively recoils. Where she was, that section of reality shatters audibly and visibly, becoming a white static void. As quickly as the cracks and the void appeared, they seal, leaving no trace of their existence. But she remains gone.
"Accursed monster," Sable barks under his breath. He fixes his dark blue eyes on his target and hunts down the monster, drawing back his fist.
The Linsemptus Scout leaps out of the way of the assault, and into view of everyone else.
"Take this!" Ita shouts, pulling a bow from her pack that looks identical to the short bow Tenee has. She quickly notches an arrow that flies true, however straight through the Linsemptus Scout's head without damaging it.
The guard pales with the sight of Ita's arrow not having an effect, but charges up anyway. The guard slashes down with his long sword, but fails to meet any gelatinous flesh to cut.
"Alright it's my turn; let me show you how a pro does it!" Ignis yells. She then holds up her hand and stares at her target intently. Then focusing her power she yells out, "Magic Missile!" From the front of her hand a small blue ring the size of her palm appeared and from it shot three blue needles that struck at the creature.
The Scout gets blasted in the face, and whips out its serrated blade in retaliation, slicing at the expendable guard. The guard raises his shield to defend, but the blade passes right through and along the guard's forearm and torso, apparently cutting deep. Along the cut, a white rift appears and the guard grunts as the pain envelops his entire nervous system.
Sable cannot help but think that the poor guard was undisciplined for his post. All the same he takes the opportunity to deliver a knee-up but when he misses, he steps forward into it to thrust with his palm.
The palm goes straight through the Linsemptus Scout's torso. Ita quickly moves to the side of the melee, and fires another arrow, this time she hits the Linsemptus Scout in what appears to be its arm. The guard barely forms any coherent thoughts as his life flashes before his eyes.
Illiaera - Day 2 - Morning Skirmish - End of Combat
"Alright then, one more time to finish it off," Ignis held up her hand and held her wrist with her left hand this time. She aimed at it carefully and yelled, "Magic Missile." The same thing as last time happened again and three blue needles flew out at struck the Linsemptus.
The Linsemptus Scout recoils as the three hits pierce it in the torso. Reminiscent of the one that took Okron's life, this Scout reaches back, forming a drill-like form with its arm...
Ita quickly realizes what is happening and unleashes another arrow at the same time as Sable takes matters into his own hands, literally.
Ita's arrow sails wide of the target, notched in haste.
Sable looks at the guard, utterly unable to save himself. He scissor kicks the Linsemptus in the extended appendage, slightly thankful that he doesn't need to launch himself into the air to perform the manoeuvre. His foot comes in contact with the monster's drill arm with more force than many humans could muster.
Like Okron before him, the guard is impaled through the heart, and collapses to the ground without a sound.
Sable returns his foot to the ground, from the position the step left him in he cranks to the side hard with his elbow into its torso and throws his fist into the monster's face
From the final point of impact with the Linsemptus Scout, a hole is blown through its form. It then dissipates, starting at the hole.
Sable returns his fists to his sides like he was taught long ago, his eyes quickly scan for any potential hostilities, then he releases his stance and watches the last particles of the Linsemptus dissolve, recounting the feeling that he could slide through the monster at any second. What were these things?
Ita relaxes, carefully releasing her already notched arrow from her bow. The arrow, you note, had a slight black aura around it. She returns the arrow and bow to her pack.
Looking down at the corpse of the gored guard, Sable is grateful for his mastery over his spiritual energy, to allow his attacks to contact.
Sable's glance catches a glint where the monster once stood; he stoops to pick up the crystal he saw there.
He instantly calls forth the image from his dream, of the other consciousness holding and examining a crystal like this. "This is a part of a key then?"
Ita glances over, "Hmm... that's the same thing as Mother showed me before..."
Illiaera - Day 2 - Aftermath of the Morning Skirmish
Sparks shatter the sky and environment, filling the people here with a dread feeling. It shatters and splits, and blindly wandering from the void appear Viis and Charlet. The world re-orientates and restores.
Viis looks towards Charlet and the rest of his companions. "Did anything happen in my leave?" he asks.
"We got attacked by some sort of weird creature," Ignis explained, "It was unlike any monster I have ever seen before, you see it blew a hole right through that guy!" Ignis points, almost as if more amazed about the creature instead of concerned for the paladin.
Viis frowns sadly. "What kind of creature would just kill someone on a whim?"
"I don't believe it was upon a whim, the monster was quite specific if you ask me, but then you didn't," Sable remarks, still examining the Lesser Crystal Key.
Ita walks over and also looks at the familiar (to her) object.
Looking sadly at the body on the floor Viis closes his eyes briefly, and thinks about the situation. As he opens his eyes again he asks, "What are we going to do with the body?"
"What do you intend to do with it?" Ita asks.
"Burying him at least sounds proper." Viis replies
"I'm not touching it, I'll go get some help from some other patrolmen in the city," Ignis said, running off.
Sable quietly agrees with Viis, standing guard over the corpse that weighs several times him. He chooses to either forget or ignore Ita's question as he crosses his legs next to the warrior's fallen body. He continues to examine the shard, though he glances at Ita's gaze to acknowledge her.
Ita, recognizing that the group has decided to wait here, wanders off to the side. She begins to sing gently, the words bypassing everyone's ears as it is in another language.
The tone of the song is slightly sad, although if you knew the words it would be sadder. Ita's voice, although relatively young, still is strong and clear, and shows that she could've been a singer, if she were not already a druid. At the end of her song, a tear flows down her cheek, and she wipes it away quickly. Feni nuzzles against her at the song's end.
Wandering back from the city with a few guards at her side, Ignis reappears in view.
Sable continues to seat in silence throughout Ita's song, beautiful, he thought.
Viis pause for a second to appreciate and wonder about the sad music before kindly greeting the guards.
The guards, upon seeing their fallen comrade, sigh, and gingerly pick the body up. The soldier at the front of the group says solemnly (to the rest of his group), "This lad was promising and too eager for his own good. He sought to serve his city, to protect its people. He has died doing that, but so long as we continue in his stead, the Linsemptus shall not take Tenmi!"
The group marches solemnly back to the city, where the body is sure to be buried in full honour.
"Well, that's all we can do here." Ita says, walking to the center of the group, "Where are you headed then?"
"Does anyone have an idea where these 'Linsemptus' come from? I'm not one for fighting but if the time comes where I need to I will." Viis says
"Hmm... you pursue them even though you know so little about them?" Ita asks carefully, "I suppose that's where I'm supposed to help."
"We'd appreciate it" Viis smiles.
"Alright." Ita says, calmly sitting down, "So, what do you want to know?"
"Yes, thanks," Charlet agrees.
Viis pauses for a moment before saying, "Everything to do with them. Well at least the relevant parts"
Ita looks at everyone of the group in the eye before continuing, “Alright, this is what I know. As you already have seen, the Linsemptus are otherworldly creatures that hold no value to this world, or the one in our dreams. They would attack and destroy anything that lives, even mere plants if they run out of other things to pursue. Do you understand so far?”
Vis nods his head.
"Of course, the Linsemptus aren't that mindless." Ita continues, "They have objectives, and a terrible goal. Their aim isn't to directly kill everything in this world, but to destroy the world itself. Their handiwork can be seen in the sky above us." Ita gestures to the fractured sky above, "Now, onto some things you don't know..."
Ita glances around, to make sure that the conversation won't be interrupted in an untimely manner, "The little crystals dropped by the Linsemptus are fragments of keys, this you know, but I will tell you what the keys are for. There are five temples in both this world and the world in our dream. These worlds are connected, and many features overlap, such as the Cliffs of Venerro and these temples."
"By some strange way, what happens at one temple will appear at the same temple in the other world; Tenee and I tried this by carving a notch on the tree at the Temple of Wood. She's the one who carved it, but it existed in this world too." Ita says with slightly misty eyes.
"The Temples of Wood, Water, Air and Fire are connected in that manner, and were made long ago. The World Temples were also made a long time ago, and Tenee and I have been following the rumour that all of the temples were made to help fight against the Linsemptus." Ita reveals, "It is a vague rumour, and one that's not often taken seriously, but Tenee and I both believe it, as does Rii."
"The keys obtained from the Linsemptus are the keys to activate the Temples." Ita finishes, "Once the Temples are activated then there will be a way to wipe out the Linsemptus."
Illiaera - Day 2 - Crystal Keys to Locks and Abilities
Ita gets up, "So, that's about everything Tenee and I know. Anything else there is to know is beyond the simple rumours we've been following."
"So," Viis asks, "Where to now? At our current ability we are not enough to eliminate the Linsemptus."
"You are right, minstrel; we are not yet strong enough to face a serious challenge posed by the Linsemptus. We must learn more about them and find out if they have any imperfections in their defense. That way we may be able to combat them more effectively." Sable points out.
"Tricky." Admitted Ita, "I don't really know anything that could help with that; the chaotic nature of the Linsemptus’ insubstantial bodies is nearly absolute."
With grace, but also hesitance, Rii steps toward the group.
Ignis awakes with a start, having fallen asleep while the others were conversing. Loud and boisterously, she exclaims, "Beam me down ... thingy!"
Sable turns to the taller humanoid, casting a glance that informed her without the need of words that she may want to keep silent to save face for her exclamation.
Ita turns towards Ignis as well, however, upon her face is a look of curiosity. "A beam what?" She asks, not fully comprehending.
"Huh? Oh it was just a dream... where are we?" Ignis asks looking around.
"Still where we were..." Ita says, pointing to the city gate to confirm.
Ignis gasps quickly standing to her feet, then stumbling and falling over again. "Ooh we haven't even moved, and yet you guys let me fall asleep somehow, why am I the only one to miss all the action... other than that fancy pants that was with us earlier, where did he go I wonder," she starts rambling, "Oh wait, is something happening?"
"Be still and perhaps you shall discover, through unfamiliar use of your ears, what we are talking about." Sable says.
With a sudden realization, the group fully becomes aware of the missing Viis. Incredible, it appears that the rift this time didn't make a noticeable disturbance.
"Mother, you were going to say something, weren't you?" Ita says, turning towards Rii, who is standing just a bit beyond the group.
All knowing and remembering the events of the previous night's journey into the other world, the three chosen almost hold their breath, waiting for Rii to act.
Rii reaches into her bag, and pulls out something clenched in her hand. Without hesitation, she tosses four glittering objects towards the group. Each person catches one in turn; they are Lesser Crystal Keys, identical to the gem received from the Linsemptus Scout.
Looking at Ignis directly, although more to the one who is watching in their dream, Rii murmurs, "There, I have returned the objects you coveted, with interest."
Now addressing the group as a whole, Rii says softly, "These crystals are more than keys, and if you choose, you can use them to aid you in battle."
Sable peers down at his 'key' and ponders the potential uses.
He puts both together in his hand, comparing them superficially.
"How can we do that?" Charlet says in interest.
"Oh? These things can be used in battle?" Ignis replies, holding it up close to her eye. "It doesn't look like much."
"If you imbue your strength with the properties of several gems, you will be able to strike the Linsemptus regardless of their position between the worlds. It takes five of those crystals for a single person to achieve this, and using the little keys in this way will completely use them up. Of course, each crystal can be imbued at different times, but it will last." Rii responds.
It doesn't take long for Sable to notice that five crystals are about the grand total carried by the group. "So we have enough for one of us to carry this power."
"Well I have spells that can take care of them, so someone else can have my piece," Ignis notes. She hadn't tried to hit them with fire yet and found it inconvenient that the crystals didn't work for her other spells, but that didn't really matter to her at the moment.
"If we use these keys for battle, will they become useless as keys?" Charlet asks.
Rii tilts her head at the group, "It appears you don't fully understand. These crystals can be imbued to your separate powers, whether physical, arcane, or divine. In doing so, the crystal is used up, and would no longer exist."
"So Charlet has provided us with the first problem. As nothing, they cannot be used as keys any longer." Sable muses, looking down at the two in his palm.
"I see, well regardless, our physical attackers will find this much more useful than I," Ignis says, "here Sable, take it." Ignis tosses the shard over to him, letting him decide if he wants to catch it or not.
Sable catches it having three crystals now. "Thank you, Ignis."
With a flash of brilliant light and colour, and several explosions of white static, everything returns to normal, with the addition of Viis.
"The world is exploding and everything around us is doomed, and it is all because of you my friend, your lateness has caused the destruction of our world, how tragic," Ignis lies, exaggerating a few points.
"Ita, you and your sister can imbue the crystals to the others, just as you can merge the crystals to form the keys." Rii says, directly towards Ita.
With that, Rii turns and walks away, disappearing into the foliage of the forest.
"Oh you’re leaving? Bye then!" Ignis says, waving.