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View Full Version : Y.Z.: Act II (PG16)


parallelzero
September 23rd, 2007, 12:22 PM
(This is NOT a sign up or discussion thread. For either of these, click here (http://pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=107857).)

It was a rainy day in Tealia, but even more so outside of the infirmary provided for wounded soldiers, otherwise known as TFI, which creatively stood for Tealian Forces Infirmary. The rain pounded mercilessly upon the window of room number thirty seven, which contained patient number three-one-seven-one. The room was full of people, which was not usually permitted without the consent of a superior officer, which in fact had been provided. The room, in fact, while holding a patient, was being used as a location for a private meeting between a commander and a few choice people.

The eyes of Rosaline Dian jolted from place to place in the room, taking in every aspect of the strange setup. The past two weeks had been a whirlwind experience for her, and she still had problems adjusting to the modern world. The room, while made to accommodate one person, was about the size of two large bedrooms, and was lined with many shelves and cupboards, all white like the walls and tiled floor aside from the chairs everyone was sitting on, which were red. There was a fairly large window on the eastern side of the room, but it was currently under the influence of a rainstorm, which made things loud and depressing. The bed in the dead center of the room was white as well, with white sheets, and a brown haired boy lying in the middle, connected to life support. It had been two weeks since he fell into a coma. When they took him into the hospital, it had been determined that he had shattered a bone in his right leg, presumable by the large hole that had pierced it, and he had become so physically exhausted that he became unable to hold consciousness. Yes, the medical case of Reid Davies was a strange one, and he had been subjected to many tests with little insight into what had really occurred. Even now, the scientists knew nothing, or rather, refused to say anything.

Rosaline looked at the boy, tracing his slow yet deep breathing pattern. She hadn't seen him since he fell into his coma, and regretted it. She had accepted Tealia's offer to train her, so that she wouldn't be such a burden anymore, but she was only learning at a slow pace, and she was far from becoming a well seasoned fighter. She had even picked up the use of a quarterstaff. Rose continued surveying the room, meeting eye contact with most of the group. It was all girls in the room other than Reid. Faewyn and Alicel, whom of which she had been spending the majority of her time with, Adela, and her mother, Commander Milo. Commander Milo was a strong looking woman, probably no older than thirty three. Her hair was long, straight, and a colour similar to that of her daughter, though it seemed more blue than the green-blue Adela had. She was a tall woman, perhaps six feet tall, with an attractive figure despite her age and the fact that she had a child. Her face suggested a calm and soothing mood, which Rosaline easily recognized as a ploy, a method to throw the group off guard. It was obvious that she had some bad news to relay to the group. The woman stood, showing off her commander uniform consisting of a blue, long sleeved jacket with white sleeves and buttons. On the back of the jacket was the symbol of the Tealian ranks, four stars running down the back vertically, with the imprint of a tulip at the very bottom. She also wore a blue, tight skirt that went to just below her knees, which showed of her curves, and a pair of navy blue boots that run up to meet the skirt.

Lianne Milo surveyed the group of teenagers before her, including the body in the bed. She proceeded to clear her throat my couching into her right hand, before proceeding to speak. "As you all may be aware, the threat of a war between the nation of Tealia and the nation of Carn has growing ever so quickly. They have been building up their forces at Alta with little resistance, since Prince Regul has been locked away. All they've needed to attack us thus far is justification, and now they have it." The woman proceeded to clear her voice once again, and Rose could tell this wasn't good. "Princess Juliet has gone missing from the castle in Carn, and the King is accusing us of kidnapping her. One political fault by the Queen will lead to a full scale war at this point, which is not something we can really deal with. Therefore, we need to locate Princess Juliet and prove our innocence so that, at the very least, we can postpone the war a little further. Carn has provided us with one week to return the princess, and with all of the other units busy preparing for war, I'd like you guys to become a new unit charged with the mission of locating the Princess. Rosaline, I realize Juliet is your sister, correct?" Rosaline nodded, a little bit distressed that Juliet had gone missing. Why would some do that? What purpose would it serve? "And that man we captured shortly before you, Aertan was it? He is an acquaintance?" Rosaline proceeded to nod once more. "Very well, he shall be joining you, and any other people you may want as long as they are not busy with other military duties."

Commander Milo approached her daughter, and poked the girl in the forehead, in the location of the purple dot similar to the ones all of the others had received. "I also have some information regarding these strange skin deformations. Scientists here are referring to the phenomenons as 'mahstion scars', and it has been confirmed that they hold some sort of unidentified power. About fifteen percent of the world's population has received these scars, and while the cause and reasoning behind it is unknown, it's recommended you avoid combat with anyone with these scars until they are analyzed further. It can't be certain, but there is some sort of belief that there is a link between these scars and what happened between Rod and Reid two weeks ago.

She proceeded to take her place in the middle of the room again, a smile now on her face. "Now, I have some more amusing news for you all. As you should all understand, Reid became a bit of a celebrity for thwarting the objectives of a traitor, despite our efforts to keep the incident out of the press. With the news of the war, the citizens of Tealia have began to become more and more depressed. Therefore, we've decided on an announcement to give them something pleasant to talk about." The woman turned to her daughter again, a big grin on her face. "As of today, Adela, you are now engaged to the hero, Reid Davies. The promise of a wedding between a hero and the commander's daughter, it's something that will make the citizens happy, even if you won't exactly wed for a few years."

"WHAT!?" Rose spoke up, getting out of her seat angrily. "You're picking his wife for him!? How is that fair to him!" She stormed out of the room in a big huff, before sitting in the fetal position down the hall a ways, her head tucked in and her wings spread out.

A stirring began to occur in the bed as the eyes of the boy slowly opened, to look at the group before him. "Huh...? Where am I? ...And why do I have the feeling something bad just happened?"

Loki
September 23rd, 2007, 01:21 PM
Adela listened to her mother's long einded speech with a blank and bored expression, sitting quietly only because she didn't want to get reproached by the person she'd been chasing after for all these years. The strange device she'd found at the scene of the crime still sat in her bag, wrapped in her bandanna. Nobody had questioned Adela as to where her bandanna had gone yet, as she'd gotten rid of the cyan ribbons on her legs and the wrist warmers as well. She hadn't even confided in her mother and idol that she'd found it. She wanted to ask Reid what it was first. Adela hated the scientists. They never told her anything because they thought it was too gruesome. And thus, Adela wanted the answers first. Whether it would hasten or slow down Reid’s recovery, Adela didn’t care; she wanted to know why this was happening.

Her mother explained half of it to her, and Adela squeezed her eyes shut when her mother poked her forehead, and Adela was tempted to bring out the device. Her mother had actually noticed something. Adela knew her mother was observant, but Adela had never really noticed that she’d ever pointed out anything odd with Adela herself, even when Adela began to wear the strange yet lithe outfit that was now blood-free.

Alicel listened intently to everything Commander Milo said, sometimes drifting off and wondering how such a beautiful and strong woman could’ve produced such a brat who was like a very cute demon. The father must’ve been a weird one. Alicel shook her head. What was she thinking?? This was serious! She focused herself on the dot on her forehead, and strained her memory for whether or not Rod had one too. Fiddling with her one remaining bracelet, she’d never really paid much attention, and though she simply couldn’t get the memory of the corpse of a friend out of her mind, she shoved it aside for the billionth time. Her mind was having a hard time focusing on anything, but when Commander Milo mentioned that Adela would be engaged to Reid, Alicel’s lower lip began to quiver with mirth.

When Adela’s mother mentioned that she’d be engaged to Reid, Adela’s lower lip began to quiver as well though with shock rather then mirth. That was all that was registered on the young girl’s face; shock shock shock.

Alicel, suppressing a great burst of laughter, excused herself with the excuse of going to comfort Rosaline, who had stormed out of the room after declaring that it was unfair to Reid to decide this for him. Of course, it was unfair, but the idea would’ve made Alicel shriek with laughter if it weren’t for the fact that Rosaline really liked Reid.

Adela, however, stared at her mother with big watery eyes and choked out in as cutesy and ‘pity-me’ a voice she could, “WHAT? B-B-But Mooom! I-I, I HATE HIIIIM!!!” Of course, this was all just a pretty façade to keep from actually having to marry him. It was a gruesome thought, and Adela couldn’t even force the image to come to her mind. She wasn’t even fourteen yet for cripes sake! Inside, Adela was shouting the most foul curse words in her mind, cursing Reid, cursing Commander Milo, cursing Tealia for being depressed and needing such an outrageous idea to cheer them up.

“I WON’T WON’T WON’T!!!” Adela shrieked like a toddler, her shrill voice practically making the whole room shiver, “NO NO NO!! I DON’T LIKE HIM! I HATE HIM, HATE HATE HATE!!! HE’S WEAK, AND HE’S STUPID, AND HE’S UGLY AND AND AND…” She continued to yell her opinion of Reid through a steady stream of fake tears that were quite convincing, repeating the words of emphasis three times each, before ending her speech with another blood curdling shriek, reducing her cries into small resigned sobs to lengthen the effect of self-pity while on the inside she was smiling smugly at her exceptional performance that would surely call the whole thing off.

Jack O'Neill
September 23rd, 2007, 08:22 PM
For two weeks, Aleksandra Zaitseva had languished in her cell at the Tealian Forces Disciplinary Barracks, cut off from any human contact save for the odd corrections officer assigned to patrol the cell block. With the departure of Rosaline, Aertan, Alicel, and Faewyn, she was (somewhat amazingly) the only prisoner left in the entire block. Either the Tealians didn't have much trouble with breaches of military law among their own personnel, or all the Carn POWs were kept in other facilities (or executed outright). Probably both.

While Adela was staging her mock tantrum in the Tealian Forces Infirmary, Aleks simply sat on the cot in her cell, mumbling what she had memorized of an arcane code of laws to herself; she had already recited the first six subchapters verbatim and was just starting on the contents of the seventh subchapter. "'Title 10, Subtitle A, Part II, Chapter 47, Subchapter VIII, Section 855, Article 55. (http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/html/uscode10/usc_sec_10_00000855----000-.html) Cruel and unusual punishments prohibited,'" she droned. "'Punishment by flogging, or by branding, marking, or tattooing on the body, or any other cruel or unusual punishment, may not be adjudged by any court-martial or inflicted upon any person subject to this chapter. The use of irons, single or double, except for the purpose of safe custody, is prohibited.'"

The lone corrections officer on duty had put up with Aleks' muttering the first few times, but at this point in time, his patience was already wearing thin. "Quiet down in there, you whore!" he yelled as he walked up to the door of Aleks' cell and started banging on the bars with his baton. "Just be a good little prisoner and pipe down already. I'm sick and tired of hearing your rambling about this 'Uniform Code of Military Justice (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uniform_Code_of_Military_Justice).'"

"'Title 10, Subtitle A, Part II, Chapter 47, Subchapter VIII, Section 856, Article 56. (http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/html/uscode10/usc_sec_10_00000856----000-.html) Maximum limits,'" Aleks kept murmuring, undaunted. "'The punishment which a court-martial may direct for an offense may not exceed such limits as the President may prescribe for that offense.'"

"Okay, that's it for you," the guard said as he put away his baton and produced a key ring from his belt, intending to unlock the door and drag Aleks to the proper facilities to administer corporal punishment. "If you're not going to shut up on your own, I'll do it for you."

As the officer opened the door and stepped into the cell, Aleks abruptly stopped her recitation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice. "Bring it," she said.

"You trying to threaten me, slut?" the officer uttered as he brandished his baton and advanced towards Aleks. This thin-skinned guard wasn't going to bother with proper protocol at this point; he was just going to beat Aleks in the confines of her own cell and get it over with right then and there. He was so blinded by his anger that he simply didn't realize he was playing right into Aleks' hands. Literally.

Aleks didn't bother waiting for the corrections officer to attack, springing up from the cot and shoving him as hard as she could, taking him completely by surprise as he was thrown into a wall. Aleks' assault continued swiftly and mercilessly as she kicked the guard in the head and ribs repeatedly, not stopping until she was sure he had been put out of commission for good. After taking the time to strip the guard of his uniform and put it on over her Soviet Naval Infantry combat fatigues, Aleks walked out of the cell, closing the door behind her with a resounding clang.

Alter Ego
September 24th, 2007, 02:50 AM
Faewyn had been uncharacteristically silent during the assembly. It wasn't out of mourning over Reid's condition, though; she had gotten accustomed to that after the first week or so. That was something Faewyn had always had a knack for, getting accustomed: even Rod's death had reached a certain point of calm now. The first time...it had been horrible, even though the girl performed her investigation with an unnervingly calm and unbothered air, even though she hadn't as much as twitched as she came face-to-face with Rod's mangled body, it had been absolutely horrible and she could barely count the number of nights she had woken up, drenched in cold sweat after being visited by that sight. On the outside, Faewyn had been just as chipper, upbeat and, curious as before, though, and in retrospect some of her actions seemed a bit insensitive towards her friends' feelings. The requested delay in burying Rod so she could get an additional investigation in had probably been the worst; she wasn't sure if Alicel had ever really forgiven her for that one, but to Faewyn it had been something that had to be done, a necessary process for her to get over the matter. She had studied Rod's corpse, every last cut, wound, and abrasion photographed, sketched, investigated and analyzed. The scientists were still rolling their thumbs, but Faewyn wanted to know.

Well, the cause of death had been easy enough: considering that the boy's skin had been torn off and every vein and artery in his body had been severed in multiple places, it would have been more disturbing if he had survived. The inconsistent cut pattern nailed it down as Wionus, but the sheer scope of the damage implied Wionus in excessive amounts; certainly way more than Reid could ever produce. Unfortunately, the wounds had yielded no sign of mahstion-based weaponry, or any weaponry for that matter. Then there was Reid's leg wound...

Faewyn's glance traveled to the comatose boy without really seeing him. The wound wasn't nearly as grotesque as Rod's, but it was - if possible - even more puzzling. Whatever had struck him had passed straight through the bone and shattered it without leaving a trace. The shape of the wound suggested a stabbing weapon or projectile of some kind and the resistance to healing confirmed the presence of Mahstion, but therein lay the quandry: what kind of weapon could cause a wound like that? Thanks to Shiraume's quick intervention, Faewyn didn't have nearly as much information on this wound as she had on Rod's, but the fact remained that the weapon had passed through a human leg without being deflected or broken. There was no way a dagger, even an empowered dagger, could shatter a bone like that. There was no sign of carbonization or acid burn so it couldn't have been Fionus or Wation, Eation would have been fully capable of crushing the bone but it couldn't conceivably have pierced the flesh like that. This left Winous, but that was hardly an adequate answer to the question. Ever since she was recruited, Faewyn had spent every available second of her weapons training at the archery range to test her hypothesis, bit not even the sturdiest crossbow bolts could withstand the amount of mahstion necessary to punch straight through a bone and keep going, the wood unfailingly giving in under the sheer pressure and bursting into a cascade of splinters. It hadn't taken long before people started maintaining a ten-meter safety radius when they saw Faewyn with her crossbow (Jokingly labeled the 'piecemaker' by her peers) and soon after she was gently handed the suggestion to practice something a bit less volatile. No, bow and arrow weren't the answer; either the projectile had to be more durable or it had to obtain a lot more velocity from the weapon itself. There was something Faewyn was missing, she knew it, it was written all over the faces of those scientists who kept giving her long, understanding looks as she badgered them about the finer points of ballistics and any kind of weapon that could give a projectile more momentum than a crossbow. There was something to find out, and she would find it, no matter how many sleepless nights that meant. Well, at least her endeavors had been far from fruitless: Faewyn was now quite the shot with a crossbow and had grown adept at controlling the amount of mahstion she released into her techniques; her spells weren't misfiring and fluctuating nearly as much as before, although of course...she cast a brief glance at the small mark between thumb and index finger on her right hand, she hadn't gone through the trial by fire yet; many of her mother's techniques had been put to practice, but not that one.

Faewyn suddenly snapped out of her reveries, blinking slightly and rubbing her eyes - which now bore a distinctly dark lining that had nothing to do with makeup - as she stifled a yawn, wondering how much she had spaced out on. Apparently, the commander had just announced a mission of some sort, declaring that they could have...Aertan and whoever else they could recruit. Aertan? Faewyn tilted her head quizzically at the thought that a prisoner from Carn would be let out of custody like that, but didn't want to get on her commander's bad side by demanding a recount of the mission and revealing that she had been spacing out in mid-briefing again; she'd just ask the others after the briefing. It wasn't like Faewyn minded Aertan, after all. Oh, she wasn't quite ready to talk about it yet, but she had felt a certain understanding for the priest ever since she heard about his quest to save princess Juliet. Despite their differences, they were the same in this; both wanted to rescue someone important to them, and although she still couldn't quite shake the feeling of dislike over the bargain that the hunter had offered her earlier, Faewyn could sympathize with the motives behind it. Aertan...deep down, he was probably a good person. Faewyn blinked again, mentally reprimanding herself; that was the second space-out during this briefing. Fortunately, the topic wasn't hard to catch this time, seeing as how commander Milo was demonstratively pointing it out as she declared that there might have been a connection between the dots and Rod's mysterious death. Faewyn really had to restrain herself so as to not interrupt the commander at this point; she hadn't told anyone about the throbbing in her dot back in that jail cell, and as far as she knew it was still her secret, but maybe...maybe if she told them it would uncover something important about the whole mystery? The girl made a mental note of Milo's warning, although it hardly seemed necessary: after all, she didn't have anything against the people with dots she had met thus far - most of them being her friends - so it wasn't like she was going to get into a fight with them anyway.

It was then that Milo got to the really big news: Reid and Adela were getting engaged. Faewyn's eyes widened as the news reached her mind, a smile spreading across her face. Wedding were fun, and an engagement was - to her mind - what you got as a placeholder while you arranged the wedding. Ohh...this was going to be awesome! She didn't realize Rosaline's blatantly obvious crush on Reid...not at all...

"Really?!" she chirped, but before her youthful exuberance got any further out of hand, Rosaline had voiced her protest before storming demonstratively out of the room, soon followed by Alicel, while Adela burst into a fit of complaints over her new fiancé.

Faewyn had half a mind to join her friends, but just then something even more exciting happened: Reid stirred, mumbling something incoherent. For a moment, Faewyn simply stared, unable to fully believe the sight in front of her eyes, but then...well, then her joy burst out in all its glory.

"Reid, congratulations!" the girl exclaimed, lunging at her bed-ridden friend and hugging him with all her might - at this point, Reid was probably counting his blessings over the fact that his injury was only in the leg - "What happened?! Does your leg still hurt?! I told uncle Kain to take a look at it but he said it was best to just let it be, even though I knew it would probably hurt, but they wouldn't let me treat it anymore! It was so scary when you just blacked out and Rod died and we were all so worried about you, and now you're back and-!" she had to take a brief pause to get some air into her lungs, but it certainly didn't leave him enough time to recover from the barrage of statements, let alone formulate a reply, and soon Faewyn charged onward again, tears streamed from her eyes, creating a peculiar contrast with her sunny smile that no number of in-between sobs could get rid of, "And now-and now you're a hero, you're engaged, and you're going to get married!" she trilled in finish, finally relinquishing the unfortunate boy from her grasp and wiping the tears away on the back of her hand, before turning a hopeful glance to the boy, "Can I be bridesmaid?" she inquired innocently, her glance traveling to Adela in turn, "I've always wanted to be bridesmaid. I had no idea you liked Adela, but I'm happy for you."

Her friend was back, there was going to be a wedding and fun for all, and Faewyn was happily back on cloud nine, blissfully unaware that anything in the world could possibly be wrong right now.

Extric
September 24th, 2007, 08:08 AM
OCC: God this post is long. I think I might have dragged the first part on a little longer than I should have.
IC:

Bar stood in front of one of the sixteen straw melee dummies just outside of the Tealian Forces Barracks. Each one had a set of two red targets; one was painted on the face and the other on the chest. Even though the dummies were made of straw, the Tealian Forces had used some type of chemical combination to reinsure that the straw dummies were never damaged from the constant beating of blades and arrows. Bar intended to completely destroy them during this practice using nothing but the Dancing Abyss.

He grabbed hold of the small hilt connected to the black blade on his right side. Slowly he released the leather strap holding the blade to his hip and did the same for the blade on his left. The large chains holding the two black swords clanged and chimed as they hit each other and the ground beneath Bar's heavy black army boots. Bar scanned the four rows of dummies set up in strait lines, hoping that his custom weapon would be enough to slice though the chemically protected straw. Without much hesitation, Bar tightened his grip on the blade to his right and quickly used the hilt to swing the second blade and the five foot chain with it. The blade hit all four of the straw dummies in the first row as it made its circle. Watching the speed of the blade, Bar let go of the hilt in his right hand and sent his left hand forward to grab the chains with his gloved hands.

Success! Bar had grabbed the chain and had began using the momentum of his spin to increase the speed in which the blade would go and the power of it's strikes. Thud, thud, thud, went the two black blades as they hit the dummies and each time the strikes would get stronger. It wasn't until five minutes into the attack on the innocent dummies that Bar could tell that he was making at strong impact on the first four. Every time the thud sounded off he could feel the blades sinking in more and more, which was a sign that Bar had beaten the special chemical used to protect the straw dummies. Now he just needed to slice completely though at least two and then he could call it a day. "Maybe a little bit of my Mahstion will increase the power and slice through the dummy in one or two hits. But I've already used a lot of my energy just hitting these dammed dummies and I don't feel like taking a visit to the TFI because I passed out after not pacing myself. It's worth a shot. The rain keeps pounding on me and making the chains more slip and hard to control and I would rather pass out than cut myself," Bar thought to himself as he continued the attack with his Dancing Abyss.

Concentrating hard, Bar channeled his Dation Mahstion into the two blades. He could feel that it was going to take a lot of his energy just to take down two defenseless dummies, so he attempted to use the dark, gray clouds covering the sun's rays and use the darkness provided to help out in the attack. Finally, he was able to generate a stronger, sharper blade. "Now, let's lose the speed and increase the power." Bar came to a sudden stop, making the chain wrap around his abdomen. Before the blades touched his face and the chain got to small, Bar shot the black swords out in front of him and into the two dummies that he had been attacking for the past fifteen minutes. With the help of his Dation, the blades went right through the dummies. "Got 'em" To complete the destruction Bar spun one last time and sent the blades right through the two dummies, leaving them hanging by just a small section of reinforced straw.

The blades stopped spinning and slowly dropped and hit the mud around Bar with a splash. The soldier looked at the sliced straw that covered the dead, wet grass around the melee field. "That...was harder...than I thought," Bar whispered. He was almost out of breath from the fifteen-minute assault on the dummies. Hopefully he didn't get this tired when the fight is for his life. He quickly strapped the blades to his hip and let the chains hang at his feet. He wiped the mud off of his chest plate, which didn't help at all since he just smeared the mud and painted the palms of his gloves with it. He turned to go to the Barracks, but when he did a stinging pain set off in his left leg. He looked down and spotted that his pants had been cut. The back of his left leg was drenched in his own blood. "Dammit. Guess I cut myself in during the assault. I'll have to get it patched up in the TFI." He quickly changed his direction from the Barracks to the Infirmary and began to limp the whole way there.

It was warm and dry within the walls of the Infirmary. Bar was glad to get out of the cold rain, but it didn't help much because he was currently soaked to the bone with almost freezing water. What appeared to be a nurse walked up to the wet, dirty soldier and began to fuss at him about dragging in all that mud with him.

"Sorry about that. I can't really stop mud from sticking to the bottom of my boots now can I," Bar said to the nurse. She sighed and apologized about the huge fuss. "Now, I need to get patched up. I think I might have cut the back of my left leg while I was doing a little bit of practice out in the field." The nurse looked at where the cut was in is cargo pants and nodded.

"Yes, I think this is one cut you're going to have to get patched up Mr. Karson," The nurse said after examining the wound. "We're going to put you in room 36 and so you don't have to limp all the way to the Barracks in the rain you can stay in there over night. So if you could make your way up there, I'll send another nurse." Bar nodded and limped away from the woman, making his way to his assigned room. It didn't take him long since the rooms had been sorted in 1, 2, 3 order. Most of the rooms next to his were empty, except for number 37 directly across the hall from his. The room was full of people. All of them were around what looks like a male, who must have been the patient seeing as he was connected to life support. Normally Bar would have just let them be, but it looked like something was happening inside of the room because of all of the people inside. Bar walked up to the door and peered through the small rectangular window. It looked like someone was beginning to speak. Very slowly and quiet like, the soldier turned the door handle and cracked it open just enough to hear what the person speaking had to say.

"As you all may be aware, the threat of a war between the nation of Tealia and the nation of Carn has growing ever so quickly. They have been building up their forces at Alta with little resistance, since Prince Regul has been locked away. All they've needed to attack us thus far is justification, and now they have it." The woman speaking cleared her thought and then began to speak once more. "Princess Juliet has gone missing from the castle in Carn, and the King is accusing us of kidnapping her. One political fault by the Queen will lead to a full-scale war at this point, which is not something we can really deal with. Therefore, we need to locate Princess Juliet and prove our innocence so that, at the very least, we can postpone the war a little further. Carn has provided us with one week to return the princess, and with all of the other units busy preparing for war, I'd like you guys to become a new unit charged with the mission of locating the Princess. Rosaline, I realize Juliet is your sister, correct?" There was silence this time as the woman spoke to someone in the room. Bar guess that someone must have given a silent answer because there was not speech.

It wasn't long before the woman began to speak once more. "And that man we captured shortly before you, Aertan was it? He is an acquaintance?" More silence that Bar guessed consisted of some form of motion that indicated a yes or no, but most likely a yes. "Very well, he shall be joining you, and any other people you may want as long as they are not busy with other military duties." The woman stopped there for a small moment, give Bar enough time to understand what had been said. It sounded like the people in the room were given a mission to find Princess Juliet because the King of Carn as accused them of kidnapping her and if they don't return the princess then a war would come into play. Bar must have missed something because he had no idea why the King of Carn would accuses this group of people of kidnapping a person of royalty. His thoughts were interrupted as the same woman as before began to speak again.

"I also have some information regarding these strange skin deformations. Scientists here are referring to the phenomenon as 'mahstion scars', and it has been confirmed that they hold some sort of unidentified power. About fifteen percent of the world's population has received these scars, and while the cause and reasoning behind it is unknown, it's recommended you avoid combat with anyone with these scars until they are analyzed further. It can't be certain, but there is some sort of belief that there is a link between these scars and what happened between Rod and Reid two weeks ago."

"Strange skin deformations? What are they...Oh, wait," Bar thought to himself. He reached up to his forehead and remembered the dot that had appeared there not long ago. It had completely slipped his mind until the woman had mentioned them. [i]"So they carry some kind of power that no one can identify. Why is it that I haven't felt any burst of power since the appearance of the dot then and what happened to those people mentioned, Rod and Reid?" After all of this, some news about a wedding was going to happen. At this part Bar close the door slowly and crossed the hall to room number thirty-six to think about what had been said in the meeting across the hall.

Loki
September 24th, 2007, 01:59 PM
"...And?" Aertan held a new set of clothes in his hand, seemingly unaware that his current set had been slashed with multiple holes when the Tealian Forces had captured him at the border of Alta. The woman who had done all the healing from earlier was standing before him, the guard standing outside looking as if he might wet his pants if Aertan were to harm even the slightest hair on Shiraume's head. Aertan was quite sure that the guard would then take Aertan's place in this jail cell. Shiraume gave no answer to Aertan's inquiry, simply continued to wave her hand loftily over his burned and bleeding tattoo. She was humming an odd tune to herself, a rather depressing one that sounded fit to be for the procession of a funeral. Aertan sincerely hoped she didn't sing this song around her patients.

"You will join the prisoners from earlier. Your main motive was to rescue Juliet, was it not?" She asked, looking up at him with her strange eyes, that seemed to be inflicted with aniridia. No matter how much he strained his eyes, he could see no pupil. It was as if her iris' were white, or they simply didn't exist.

"Yes." Came Aertan's blank reply.

"I'm not good at debriefing," Shiraume explained as Lionus danced across Aertan's forehead, "And so I will allow Adela to explain the new mission assigned."

"Wait," Aertan started to say, but Shiraume's Lionus stopped suddenly.

"I said," She repeated in a deadly voice, "I'm not good at debriefing."

Aertan wanted to take a few steps back from the weird woman who hadn't even waited for his question, but the Lionus roughly wrapped itself around his head again. It was obvious that she was peeved. And she'd seemed like such a pleasant person earlier. Sighing, Aertan let her heal his wounds without much protest, and when she was finished, she stepped out of the cell, and both the guard and the healer stepped out of sight. Aertan assumed this was the prime time to change into his new clothes. And so he did; but it was obvious to him that his own style preference had not been taken into account, and he'd simply been given the most basic outfit. Probably picked out by that Shiraume lady who wore plain entirely white outfits. It was better then having everything be flowery though.

"I'm finished, if anyone cares." Aertan announced, knowing Shiraume had not left due to the prison door having never shut.

Indeed, the woman in question's head peered out from around the corner, and she said, "Come with me."

"Not possible." Aertan replied, flatly, but at that moment, a string of Lionus formed into a long spindly hand unlocked the cell door and slithered back around the corner. Aertan would've taken this chance to make a bust for it, but he tugged lightly on the mahstion bracelet, and when it didn't seem like that would be unlocking itself anytime soon, resigned himself to following the woman, who hadn't bothered waiting for him. The Lionus did, however, and it soon led him to the infirmary. This was where that kid who had shot Haeon't earlier was, they'd said something about taking him away earlier. Reid was his name, if memory served Aertan right.

"Oh dear." Shiraume said in a voice that didn't really sound interested, "It seems that Adela has learned of her new predicament. I wonder... has Kallen found out?"

As she began to mumble to herself, Aertan could now fainted pick up the loud screaming and crying and sobs that were erupting from the room. It wasn't hard to guess who Adela was, even if he hadn't known her name prior. It was obviously the little girl.

"Ah, it seems as if Adela is not the only lamenting female." Shiraume said, as she stepped into the hallway.

"Princess Rosaline." Aertan greeted, tilting his head forward slightly when he caught sight of the grieved girl, "I see that I have missed out on something important."

"You may ask Adela to explain the new mission for you when she calms down, or perhaps the sacrifice." Shiraume said, ignoring the twitch of Aertan's wings when she uttered 'sacrifice', "I have some business to attend to." She bowed neatly before gliding off as though in a dream.

"...Right." Aertan raised an eyebrow, staring after the healer.

"Adela's probably not going to be telling you anything soon," Alicel said, looking up from sitting across from Rosaline, "Commander Milo's probably going to make her shut up soon. She's going to be married to Reid, you see."

"Pleasant." Aertan said, his voice sounding extremely disgusting by the idea of marriage in general.

"So we're going to go find Juliet, after Reid is better. Commander Milo says that Juliet's disappeared, and Carn is blaming Tealia, so we're going to find Juliet and prove that Tealia isn't responsible." Alicel continued, ignoring Aertan's sarcastic remark, "Commander Milo says that you'll be helping out."

"..." Aertan glared down at his distant relative and snapped, "That makes no logical sense. If a Tealian team suddenly pops up with Juliet in their clutches, that's not going to solve anything." Aertan sighed, scratching the back of his head, "And if she suddenly pops up in a Tealian Force unit that includes me, then I don't know whether the king would include us as sacrifices for Tylonstus or just kill us on the spot. I think Tealia forgets that I'm from Carn, and-"

"Your tattoo burns though. I know what that means." Alicel stated.

Aertan didn't bother to finish his sentence, simply stared warily at Alicel.

"Hn." Was the only response Aertan could think of.

"So Rosaline, look, Aertan is on our side. Cheer up, you know? He's got those freaky hands and Fionus, so finding Juliet will be a breeze. And Adela's not going to just let herself be married off to someone, and I'm sure Reid isn't the kind to sit tight either. We just have to be patient, right?" Alicel grinned at Rosaline, though she wasn't all that sure that Rosaline was listening.

....

A woman, clad in white. Her long blonde hair is so white that it's nearly the same shade as her elegant yet simiplistic dress. Her heels have flakes of dried blood on them, as the woman didn't bother to clean off her heels from the incident from earlier. Nobody has questioned her strange ways. She barely acknowledges the other healers; she doesn't need to, she's adept enough at her practice to need no acquaintances with the others to learn tricks of the trade. She holds her head up high, poised and proud, though her eyes are blank and empty. She suffers from aniridia, an ailment that leaves her nearly blind. She 'see's with her Lionus magic, and uses only the smallest amounts so nobody can see or feel the light when it passes over their faces, or across their frames so that she can make out where they are as opposed to herself.

She stands at the spot where Rod's body once was, though the blood has long been cleaned up and the investigation of the scene completed. She does not know why she is there, but knows what spurred to wind up in a place far from her original destination. Surely, surely something has been watching her. Kallen, perhaps, as a joke, since Kallen is aware of how aware she is of her surroundings?

The woman turns around, but is met with nothing, simply the light of the doorway that leads to these dungeons, as she has carelessly left it open. She must think of a reason if a guard comes to inquire as to why she is here again. But she has none. But, she doesn't need a reason. She turns back around to face the hall that leads to the other cells, which are unoccupied. There are many prisons underneath the surface of Tealia, a fact that seems to be well hidden and not discussed. She glances about herself, and suddenly realizes what's off about her surroundings. The door has shut again, and it is not a breezy day. She feels watched again, like a specimen standing in a glass case with scholars pressing their noses in to get a better look.

"Who is it?" She asks, her voice quite calm and indifferent. She is unfrightened.

"Nobody." Replies a masculine voice tauntingly.

"I see. Then may I leave?"

"You came of your own will; there is no one keeping you here."

"That is true." She answers the logical statement, and steps away from the spot where Rod's body had once pooled blood. But when she takes another step away, she is suddenly falling into a pool of Dation, that shoots for the woman's mouth at the first chance it has, to muffle her rare scream of terror as she is engulfed by the element she hates the most.

"Ah." Says the voice, "It seems I lied." And both the woman clad in white and the man clad in black disappear in pools of Dation that seem to evaporate, leaving not a trace of their prescence except for a higher concentration of Dation in the air then before.

parallelzero
September 25th, 2007, 05:49 PM
OOC: Crap post, but I'm fighting writer's block.

"Phase one has been completed. May I proceed with phase two?" The long haired boy asked of the Carn soldier behind him as he gazed upon the city of Meredy, Tealia's capital. The two were atop the highest point of the Queen's castle, and were looking over the town with interest. The boy's hair, which was divided in half into white and black colouring, blew restlessly in the rainy wind. The large, bulky man behind him shook his head negatively. Apparently now was not the time to move.

"WHAT THE HELL THERE IS NO WAY I AM MARRYING THAT TWIT!" Reid started up after learning the reality of the situation. "I DON'T CARE IF IT'S THREE YEARS AWAY, I DON'T CARE HOW CUTE ADELA IS, AND I DON'T CARE IF MY MOTHER APPROVED IT!" He continued to shout from an upright position in his bed, over and over, until Commander Milo smacked the two both upside the head.

"You two will do as you're told. How do you know if you hate each other? How often have you lead a normal conversation? I get a good vibe from you two, I feel you'll make an excellent couple! You're just so cute together!" The Commander threw in her words of encouragement, and Reid just glared in response at her and Faewyn, the thought 'Women are crazy' running through his mind.

Meanwhile, Rosaline was still trying to cope with what had just occurred. Even with Alicel's attempts at making her feel better, she really didn't. But what was this feeling? Was she mad at Reid about this, even though it wasn't his fault? Should she be mad at him? Standing up, she regained her composure and bowed to Aertan after regaining her composure. "Thank you for your help, Mr. Aertan. I'll be fine, I just need to get some sleep I suppose. Let's go check on the others, shall we?" She began to walk towards the room, content that Reid had now awoken and she could hear him arguing over the whole ordeal.

A flash of lightning struck. "Now?" A loud BOOM of thunder cracked afterwards as the man nodded amidst another flash of lightning, giving the entire situation a dramatic undertone. The boy raised his arm into the air towards him, and dation began to concentrate into what appeared to be a portal of some sort. The large Carn soldier watched just outside of the infirmary with binoculars as a portal just like the one before the boy formed. The boy entered the one before him, and appeared out of the one near the militaristic institution. He licked his lips as he found himself automatically face to face with two sentries that were charged with security at the infirmary. They didn't have much time to react before a white beam of unimaginable strength pierced their chests, killing them almost instantly. The two corpses fell to the ground, large holes blown through their bodies, leaving a bloody mess.

An attack of such powerful concentrated mahstion would be enough to bring everyone within one hundred kilometers to the conclusion that a demon was present in the area, and such an assumption wouldn't be far from the truth. Rosaline, Reid, and Commander Milo's eyes shot open at the overpowering aura of mahstion approaching from nearby. Reid threw off his sheets and grabbed his equipment, throwing it on quickly despite the fact that he was still far from able to hold his own against a normal enemy, let along someone of that strength. Rosaline, still in the hall, brought her flute up to her chest with both of her hands in a ready position, not anticipation that she would have no time to react.

It all happened so fast. A white beam of lionus pierced the wall of the building, raising dust into the air, and when visibility became stable, Rosaline was drooped over the shoulder of some mutilated human, her eyes open, but void of consciousness. The wet, black horns of the boy glistened in the artificial lighting in the hall, his four wings flapping to remove any excess moisture. He grinned at Aertan and Alicel, who were before him, which revealed his sharp and deadly fangs, his blood red eyes seemingly staring through them, piercing their very soul. The 'thing' brought his right hand, which had lengthy, sharp fingernails that resembled claws up to his long, elven like ear, before scratching it as if nothing interesting was occurring. He pointed one of these fingers beyond the two people in front of him, shooting a black beam of dation at a soldier who had turned the corner to check on what was occurring. It nailed the woman's chest, splattering red blood upon the wall behind her.

Reid and Milo got out of the room just in time to witness this, and Reid readied his bow with a shaky hand from the shock of the appearance and power of this... thing. The demon boy grinned again, before speaking his first words to the group. "Aww, I was expecting a much more positive first meeting, not one where I receive so many rude looks." His left hand lifted towards the girl who was on his shoulder, and he grasped her by the back of her gown, holding her out for all to see. Reid clenched his teeth. He could have shouted her name, but what good would that have done? "I'll just be taking this girl now, seeing as nobody else has been able to get her." The boy glanced at Aertan casually, before bearing his fangs once more in enjoyment. "Aertan Svartel, you have been charged with treason, and are to be eliminated, along with the rest of this pathetic group." He proceeded to spit on the ground before him, before stepping aside to deflect a shot of lionus back at it's owner. Commander Milo fell to the ground unconscious as her own attack backfired and hit her in the right arm, leaving a large open wound in it's place. Reid attempted an arrow, but the demon before him caught it between his fingers with ease, leaving Reid hopeless and wide-eyed.

"Really, if you're going to try and kill I, Cress Alberto Tylonstus, the seventh Apostle, you might want to try a little bit harder."

Loki
September 25th, 2007, 06:25 PM
Aertan narrowed an eye in annoyance when addressed by his full name. So how did this little demon-spawn know his name? An Apostle? Tylonstus? This was vaguely familiar, but only vaguely. Either way, Aertan cracked his neck and glared down the Apostle, scoffing at the monster, "Treason? My entire life is treason against Tylonstus, isn't it?"

Haeon't and Geote stirred in the framework of Aertan's wings. The knobbly bumps at the top of his wings turned and turned, before Aertan held his forehead in even more annoyance then before, the two hands spinning out of their confines and clawing at the air to get at the apostle. Aertan, however, had different plans, as great rings of Fionus looped themselves around Haeon't and Geote's arms, the entire massive fireball surging toward the apostle. A true apostle, Aertan knew, would be untouched by this attack, which was quite draining in reality. It certainly wasn't human, but that certainly didn't mean it was apostle.

"Ah, by the way," Aertan said, in a peeved voice as Haeon't and Geote sped forward to assault the apostle, "I'd hope that you're not planning on taking away a hunter's captured prey. That's rude."

Alicel's eyes automatically travelled to Aertan's left hand, which lay loosely at his side, while his right hand controlled the Fionus around Haeon't and Geote. It was like a magic fog he'd hidden in, out of sight, had finally lifted. She wanted to ask him questions, ask him who he was, ask him if this was the reason he didn't want to be found near Juliet. She wanted to ask him why he had even been on Carn's side when they treated their family like dirt.

"Svar-" Alicel started, but Aertan waved it away with his left hand, which fell back to his side after the weak gesture, focusing on the Apostle rather then his family tree. Alicel stepped backward a few steps. She couldn't do anything, because Aertan had taken the initiative. Water and Fire didn't mix, and Alicel had never been raised to fight with her mahstion. And how could she whip the apostle with Rosaline in his grasp? Alicel shrunk backwards, a heavy feeling of envy tugging at the corners of her mind, even though the whole idea made her quiver with shame. How could she feel jealousy now, at this crucial moment? She was distracted however, by Adela, who had seemingly really gotten riled up from bad news after bad news after more bad news.

Adela slid into the very middle of the battlefield, dragging a shadow of Dation behind her as the tendrils wrapped themselves around her, and pulling out her bow, fired four arrows fashioned out of her mahstion. Two that mixed themselves with Haeon't and Geote's Fionus. Two that sped directly toward Cress to try and pluck Rosaline out of his hands before she was burnt to a crisp by Dation and Fionus and sharp clawed demon hands.

Adela continued shooting clump after clump of Dation toward the Apostle, the puddle at her feet rapidly fading away. Having completely forgotten about her engagement and her tantrum, having no reaction to her mother's words about her never having really conversed with Reid and hating him only because he garnered more attention from her then Adela could even imagine. It was a good enough reason for Adela, so why not her mother?

Jack O'Neill
September 25th, 2007, 10:18 PM
Aleks crept through the oddly silent hallways of the disciplinary barracks, nightstick in hand as she performed a visual sweep of her surroundings. The attack on the infirmary had drawn off most of the security contingent, leaving only a token force to keep an eye on the few prisoners contained within the facility. Aleks had the misfortune to inadvertently bump into one of the few unlucky individuals left babysitting.

"Hey, you down there!" the guard called out to Aleks. She was a Hispanic female around Aleks' age, with short jet-black hair and bright green eyes; she was clad in the uniform of the Tealian Forces, which outwardly resembled that of the United Nations Space Command Marine Corps from the Halo series (http://images.wikia.com/halo/images/b/b3/MarineFatiguesUniform.jpg). "Shouldn't you be at the infirmary trying to secure the compound from further intrusion by Carn operatives?"

Aleks struggled to find the proper words to tell the Tealian NCO. "I...I was just transferred here to Meredy a few days ago. I don't know my way around here," she uttered, attempting to give off some pretense of emotion.

"So, a newbie, huh?" the officer said to herself. "You'd better come with me, then."

Aleks had no choice but to follow the officer's lead towards the infirmary. Her escape plans would have to be delayed...if she was going to escape at all. As far as the Tealian Forces were concerned, she was one of their own soldiers, and desertion carried the death penalty with it.

Alter Ego
September 28th, 2007, 11:06 AM
OOC: Stupid question number two: are the characters in the discussion thingie approved? Because, you know, if not then I'll have to edit this post. :3

IC:

Faewyn's eyes widened at Reid's outburst, "You don't like Adela?" she inquired in a childishly innocent voice, tilting her head quizzically, "Then why are you marrying her, Reid?"

Apparently, she had never gotten acquainted with the concept of arranged marriage. The circumstances left very little room for explaining such things, however, as the room was suddenly assaulted by an individual so creepy that he made even Aertan look like a harmless little kitten in comparison. For a moment, Faewyn simply gaped, overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of the mahstion presence, and before she had even managed to reach for her weapon, both the guards in the room and commander Milo herself had been struck down and Rosaline had been captured, the stranger haughtily declaring that they had all been sentenced to die. Aertan and Adela immediately went for a counter-attack, and for the moment Faewyn chose not to interfere, even as she readied her staff, still set into crossbow mode. Her mahstion control may have been better than before, but with Rosaline there, she didn't dare fire one of her charged-up shots; one miscalculation and her friend would be torn to pieces by a maelstorm of splintered wood. No...she couldn't risk that, she just couldn't. With these thoughts in mind, Faewyn anxiously followed the scene, still clinging to her crossbow just in case this arrogant enemy would leave an opening.

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

Meanwhile, just outside the infirmary, another stranger had stopped to observe the scene, the gray, standard-issue military rain cloak hiding his features from view, save for a small bit of the bronze-colored face. In all honesty, said person had found the return to his hometown somewhat disappointing thus far. It wasn't the lack of a welcoming party or even an official escort of some sort, he could live with that. What really got him riled up was the weather.

"Rain..." he muttered for himself, trudging across the desolate courtyard, nothing spoiled a hero's return quite like rain. But there was something else too, a certain tension in the air, like a thunderstorm just waiting to burst out. On one hand, he found the prospect invigorating, but on the other...this wasn't just your average adrenaline-inducing trouble; no, this felt more...sinister.

It was then that the surge of mahstion erupted, ringing every warning bell in the stranger's mind. He didn't waste any time, immediately breaking into a run.

"Hey, you!" he called out to a figure slouching by the entrance, "Do you know what's-?" the moment he got close enough to the guard to see his face, he realized the futility of his demand. The man's eyes were completely lusterless, locked in a mask of passive horror, and the moment the stranger touched it, the lifeless body lost what little posture it had and fell to the ground, revealing five, evenly shaped, bloody holes reaching straight through his stomach and out through the back. The living man's eyes narrowed, his right hand instinctively reaching beneath his cloak while the left confirmed the absence of a pulse, his amber eyes glinting in what little light shone out from the main building, a new surge of mahstion erupting from somewhere in the hospital wing, this was really bad.

"Well, what do you know..." he mumbled softly, his hand returning from beneath the cloak, now holding a weapon that looked like a standard-issue quarterstaff, save for the sizable axe-head at the end, "Looks like someone decided to throw a welcoming party after all..."

Casting one last glance at the fallen soldier, he charged towards the infirmary at full speed, the wind catching a hold of his hood and pulling it back, revealing a head-full of blonde hair, tied up into a thin, rope-like ponytail at the back which danced back and forth as he rushed towards the source of the disturbance, weapon in hand. 'Reece Everard is back in business!'

parallelzero
September 30th, 2007, 03:18 PM
"You and I are one in the same, Mr. Svartel. My very existence is treason against Tylonstus, yet I stand before you representing him. However, don't waste my time!" The apostle's voice grew irritated as the fireball reflected in the creature's red eyes. The ball of fionus hit it's target, but as the inferno disappeared and the smoke began to clear, the figure of the boy was seen right beneath Aertan, before utilizing an uppercut to his stomach with Rosaline still draped over his shoulder. It would have been difficult for anyone to see him move and leave a ball of dation behind to make it seem like it had hit him.

Cress, while not given much time to react, soon found himself involved with Adela's assault. He easily caught the remaining arrows like he had done with Reid's, before breaking them in half and dropping them to the ground. "The battlefield is no place for little kids." Was what he said before he disappeared from plain view once again. Reid's eyes shot back and forth, looking for the opponent. His ears caught the creature's movement, and determined it's location. "ADELA!" He shouted, on cue with the appearance of Cress, who was now directly behind the young girl, his free hand raised with Lionus gathering on the palm. How the hell was he both a Dation AND a Lionus user? There wouldn't be any time for her to react, and a blast of that magnitude would surely kill her if it made contact.

At that moment, time seemed to stand still for the boy, and then everything went black excluding her body, which seemed to be resonating with a dim green light. He grabbed his forehead in agony as the little green dot began to burn furiously, and he fell to his knees as the room became lighter again.

However, he was not in the room with the others anymore. He was standing... in the sky? No, the sky was purple, why was this sky blue? How the hell was he standing? The sky suddenly changed to a shade of green, and the wind began to gather, as far as Reid could see, in a specific area before him. It was strange. As far as Reid could tell, there was no mahstion present in the air, and he could not see beyond the clouds below him. Where was he, exactly? His attention was drawn back to the wind gathering before him after it began emitting a strange green light. The light was similar to the light he was admitting, only this one was much stronger. The mass of wind did nothing for a moment, but one final flash of light revealed the true nature of this wind.

Standing before him was a figure, obviously female, but obviously not human. Everything about her was a green colour. Her skin was a pale green colour, her hair dark green and flowing down to her ankles, though it danced wildly in the breeze, with her bangs brushing her green eyebrows. She didn't look that old, perhaps thirteen or fourteen, which was backed up by her small frame and lack of definitive curves, though she was about Reid's height. She was dressed in a simple white robe that went down to her knees, leaving her shoulders, arms, and an inch of two below her neckline bare. Her eyes completed the inhuman persona, as they were white, just white, with no visible pupils. She gazed at Reid in a manner that suggested she was daydreaming, but Reid could only assume she always wore that expression because at the same time it felt like she was peering right into his soul.

Reid reached for his bow as a safety precaution, but his hand caught air where the bow should have been. Upon closer inspection, he found that he too was dressed in a similar robe. The girl shook her head, and a smile formed on her lips which were a green not unlike the green of her hair. Her eyes remained in a daydreamy state, however, which Reid found somewhat relaxing. This person, if she was a person, had a very relaxing aura about her. After a moment of silence, and the two staring at each other, the green girl began to relay words to the boy.

"Reid Davies of the wind, you may simply call me 'Mistral', for that is my tribe name." The girl, Mistral, had a very soft, emotionless voice, but it seemed to incorporate a very child-like pitch that reminded Reid of his sister when she was distracted. "I'm sure you have many questions to ask, like who I am, what I am, or where we are right now. That, however, will have to wait until afterwards. For now, let's just leave the information at the fact that I am you, and I can provide you with the power to protect."

"You're the one who killed Rod, aren't you?" Reid said cautiously as he took a step back from the girl. If he was making proper sense of what she was saying, could she have been the one that took control of his body that time?

"No, not I. Since we have become connected, we will now be able to talk at any desired moment, I will explain all after your friend's are safe. It won't be long until they too meet their other halves..." With these words in Reid's head, Mistral faded from his vision, and everything turned black again. He suddenly found himself back in the hallway, and it was as if no time had gone by since he zoned away. The only difference between then and now was that his body had the same green glow Mistral had been radiating, and the Wionus concentration radiating from his body was tremendous. Commander Milo, still on the ground and wounded, watched wide eyed as Reid disappeared for a moment and reappeared where he had previously stood, Adela in his arms. "Very good." He heard Mistral in his head.

Cress' attack hit thin air, and impacted the wall at the end of the hallway. His eyes locked on to Reid's with a look of annoyance present. He was surely thinking 'how the hell did he do that?' The demon boy spat on the ground, and stepped back as a black mahstion portal formed behind him. "Apparently I must take my leave now. I'm sure we'll meet again. And don't worry! I'll take good care of the sacrifice here." He shook the unconscious girl violently and licked his lips, before entering through the portal, appearing at the HQ in Alta amidst a dark room.

Reid glanced down at the girl in his arms, who he set down in fear of her beating him. The green aura faded, and he stumbled slightly, apparently exhausted. "Dammit... Rosaline..."

OOC: Don't worry, everyone will get their own little friend. XD

Loki
September 30th, 2007, 04:23 PM
Alicel loosened her grip on her whip, feeling as guilty as ever for having done nothing except be a nuiscance, for having done nothing but watch as Rosaline was taken away again. Shuffling over to Aertan, who lay in a crumpled heap. Squatting down beside him, she was hesitant to even touch him, but reached out to help him up. He had different plans however, as Haeon't grabbed Alicel's wrist, the girl amazingly not flinching at the touch of the filthy-looking hand, but staying where she was as Geote slammed himself into the ground, pushing Aertan up onto his knee's. The Svartel before her looked extremely flustered as he tried to catch his breath and clutched his stomach.

"Don't touch me." He wheezed out as Haeon't released Alicel's grip, "Filthy... blood trait-" He turned his head in the other direction as he coughed up some blood. It was a mighty fierce punch that that demon had, and spitting out the remaining blood in his mouth, Aertan stood, with Geote still on the ground like a walking stick.

Alicel's expression seemed not to register the insult, as she simply stood up as well and glanced at Reid, who had moved at what seemed like the speed of light. She hadn't even seen him flinch.

Adela herself was still shaking from simply being in the presence of so much Lionus magic, and she stared up at Reid with a wary and surprised face- She had just turned to stare into blinding white light and then the next she was being placed onto the floor. Determinedly looking away, she screwed up her face in an effort not to really cry, but it didn't help that by looking away, she stared straight at the wounded Commander Milo. So how had she escaped without a scratch? Because Reid had gotten her out of the way just in time. Otherwise, Adela wouldn't have stood much more chance then her mother, who was surely superior in terms of skill and talent.

"I'm not..." Adela blubbered to herself, her face turning a flustered red as she clenched her hand into a fist and pounded it down onto the tile floor, "A KID!!!!!"

Aertan lazily stared at Adela, who was crying yet again, though the tears were probably a bit more genuine in the new situation. He silently watched as the girl stumbled to her feet in a discoordinated way and muttered, “I’m gonna find Shiraume.” before storming out of the ward. So, that was probably the fourth time he’d heard someone down talk Adela about her age since he’d met her.

“So. Now we have to find Juliet and Rosaline.” Aertan said, ignoring Adela as he thought to himself.

The eye on Haeon’t’s palm opened and switch to a mouth as it hovered next to Aertan’s temple, “Kirden’s whispers say that Julie-“

Aertan interrupted the mangled harsh hiss of a voice, “Haeon’t, Geote, please move Commander Milo to Reid’s vacant bed, it’s probably more comfortable then the floor. Don’t touch the wound and don’t move her too much so that the injury does too. You know the drill.”

Haeon’t’s mouth switched back to its eye, and Geote lifted himself off the floor, Aertan taking a step forward to steady himself as the two arms gingerly lifted Commander Milo off the floor and into the room.

~

“I… don’t know.” Villa murmured timidly as she trembled in the company of the others, “I don’t… remember…”

She braced herself for the blow that would surely come. She had failed yet again. But, hadn’t they seen it? Hadn’t they been observing her every move since she became that other girl? Hadn’t she done enough just by saying yes to becoming this guinea pig? Was there more? Something she hadn’t noticed or seen?

Where had she been? She was in Carn, now. But before? Where had she been? They say Tealia. But Villa had no recollection, she mumbled almost incoherently, shrinking backward as she spoke, “I-I only re-remember a little girl w-with teal hair.”

”My hair’s not funny! At least I don’t have white hair like an old lady!!”

As if someone had split her head open, Villa whimpered as she squatted down, clutching her head. It was the blue hair; just the blue hair. And the white hair, she could remember seeing the few strands that hung in her eyes. But the more she thought about it, the more it hurt, and she blanked it out. After being excused for being a failure, Villa scurried out of the room and let her sleeves drag on the floor behind her as she resisted the urge to cry. Her head hurt whenever she tried to think of the things they wanted to know. But she’d been doing this for so long because they needed to know.

It was nice, to feel normal…

Alter Ego
October 1st, 2007, 02:48 AM
Faewyn could do nothing but gape at the ensuing battle. Not only was this stranger stronger and faster than she had even thought possible, but he knew how to wield two types of mahstion? No, that just couldn't be right! Each and every living being was only born to one mahstion type; all the books in mama's library had been absolutely adamant about it, and to top it off Lionus and Dation were opposing elements. Still, this shock was relatively minor in comparison to what happened next; her mark suddenly sprung into the old throbbing routine again, forcing Faewyn to relinquish her grasp of the crossbow and grab a hold of her forehead again, her body swaying back and forth in a feeble effort to stay upright. Reid...her glance traveled towards the boy, only barely recognizing its target. The mahstion presence surrounding him was astounding, it was-Faewyn gasped as the obvious conclusion jumped out from the depths of her mind; wind mahstion in excessive amounts, certainly enough to...she swallowed heavily, curling up into a fetal position while continuing to clasp her head, even as the throbbing continued to subside. No, that couldn't be right! Reid and Rod were friends! He'd never have killed his own friend like that! Never, NEVER, EVER!

Faewyn was still in shock as the battle cleared, the stranger disappearing with Rosaline in tow. She had done nothing, nothing what-so-ever. What kind of a soldier was that? The girl's eyes traveled across the room in desperate search of something positive about the situation, anything, anything at all. As long as she had even the tiniest spark of happiness, no matter how futile, she could go on...

"Halt, intruder! Oh..." Faewyn's attention was immediately drawn to the other stranger who had just burst into the room, glaive in hand, "Guess I missed the battle, huh?" he inquired sheepishly, brushing aside a few locks of blonde hair from his bronze-colored face before turning down his weapon in a decidedly embarrassed manner. The girl's stare intensified, there was something familiar about this stranger, she was positive that she had seen him somewhere, but...

"Reece Everard reporting for duty, commander." the stranger announced, "Although I guess this is not a good time for that either..?"

"Reece?!"

At Faewyn's exclamation, the stranger's attention was finally turned to her, both staring at each other for a moment before his eyes widened in surprise, "Fay?" he inquired cautiously, "What in the Styx are you doing here?"

"It is you!"

"Hey, hey, easy." Reece mumbled as the girl leapt at him, catching his waist with the same kind of crushing hug she had applied to Reid earlier and bursting into a fit of uncontrollable sobs, tears running down her cheeks and incomprehensible fragments of speech like 'they took her!' escaping beneath the sobs, "Fay, look; whatever's wrong it will turn out okay in the end. I'll see to it, alright?" he gave Faewyn a paternal pat on the head before turning his attention to the others, his expression now dead serious, "Alright, does anyone mind filling me in on what just happened here? Who took who? Why did this room have the mahstion concentration of a small country a few minutes ago? Why are there more dead bodies lying around here than at the morgue? And what in all blazes is a Carn priest doing here?" he cast a suspicious glance at Aertan, "For the love of justice, someone tell me what the heck is going on."

parallelzero
October 7th, 2007, 12:08 PM
OOC: Okay, I'm back! ...I think. Ah well, we'll see.

Cress, finally free of that burden of a sacrifice, made his way to the large chamber that served as their strategy room. His mission would not be over until he reported to number 1, and if he did not he would be more than punished. His eyes only looked forwards as he walked through the halls. This place was underground, and very dark. Only the odd, dim lionus lamps hanging from the ceiling every thirty feet cast enough light to make the path visible, though that was enough for apostles for their sight was more adept than that of your regular human. The halls, sporting a width of only around fifteen feet, had walls and the ceiling carved out of a flat, smooth, crimson stone that eerily reflected the light from the lamps, giving everything a crimson glow, including the white tile floor. From time to time, there would be a white door in the wall, but for the most part apostles were forbidden to enter these doors unless an order was given to them to use one. They were only permitted the use of the halls, their residence (which, mind you, was just a tiny room with no furniture, where they all had to sleep on the tile floor basically on top of each other), the strategy room, and the cafeteria.

The apostle's indifferent hike to the strategy room was soon interrupted as a girl erupted from a room in front of him. Cress didn't get a good look at her face, as she turned so that she was walking with her back against him. While he had never seen this girl before, her mahstion signature proved that she was one of them. So had she been away all of this time? There were six apostles other than himself, and he had only met five, so that would have made sense. He ran up to the girl's side, aware that she seemed troubled, and placed his right, clawed hand on her shoulder, implying he wanted her to stop. While he hated the other five for the way they treated him, it was possible he had a chance of befriending this white haired girl. "Excuse me, I don't mean to sound rude, but I've never seen you before. My name is Cress, I'm the seventh apostle. And you are?" Without giving her the chance to answer, he continued. "Is something troubling you? It isn't right for such a pretty face to seem so depressed." He mentally cursed his voice. For some reason, it almost sounded like a woman's. He was only lead to assume that this, plus his unusually feminine appearance, that he was the first apostle spawned from a male and a female being fused.

--> --> --> -->

As time went by, a medical team came for the wounded, and Commander Milo's room was quickly filled with doctors seeing to her wound. The rest of the group was told to wait in the small cafeteria the infirmary had. It was a ghastly sight walking to the specified location. Dead bodies being placed in body bags by morgue workers, red blood splattered over the white walls and floor.

Reid stood against the wall of the cafeteria, his head down and eyes closed. Commander Milo's wound, Rosaline being taken, it was all too much. Just what the hell was going on? What the hell was that thing? Do you find yourself troubled? A voice in the back of his mind asked, obviously the voice of Mistral. You have friends, do you not? Talk to them. I have much to tell you and them as well myself. Reid sighed, and stood upright once more as he faced the group, which he guessed had a lot of questions themselves. "So, what do we do now? Obviously, we can't sit around here and wait. We need to find Rosaline and Juliet."

I can answer that for you. A voice echoed in everyone's head as the dot on Reid's began to glow, the light eventually consuming his body along with a strong wind swirling around him, until nothing physical could be seen of him. During this time, Reid's body felt like it was being torn apart, reconstructed. Unfortunately for him, that wasn't far from the truth. When the wind settled and the light disappeared, Reid was not standing where he was previously, but instead stood a young girl in her very early teens, that looked uncannily like Mistral. Her hair was dark green, straight, and ran down to her ankles, bangs falling over her thin eyebrows that took the same colour. Her eyes, unlike during Reid's encounter with Mistral, had pupils, and were large and dark green, and wide with confusion. The girl was dressed in Reid's clothing, which had seemingly shrunk to fit her thinner, but not shorter frame, and the accented the little curves she had.. The biggest difference was that her skin took on a more human colour than Mistral's, losing all green tint and becoming just pale, while her lips were the normal pink you could expect of a girl. "Gah!" The girl shrieked in a shrill, high, feminine voice as she grasped onto reality. "Mistral, what the HELL did you do to me!?"

Following this, her eyes seemed to dilute as her pupil noticeably disappeared. "I apologize, Reid." The girl once again spoke, apparently not under Reid's control this time. In fact, he had been shoved back into the back of his mind. "I could have manifested my presence in a number of ways, but this was the most convenient way of getting my point across." She looked the group over, and waved her right hand, hand all of the dots on their foreheads began to glow. "My name is Mistral, and I am a descendant of the Goddess Ophelia, as is Reid and all of you. I'm sure you all have many questions to ask, so I'll try and cover as much as I can before you ask them. I suppose I should start with the story of our people, since the rest of this would make little sense to you."

Mistral bowed to the group, placing her hands in front of her as she did so, before making herself comfortable upon a cafeteria table top. "According to Reid's memory, memories of the Goddess have been long lost. A very long time ago, there existed only one celestial being. Her name was Ophelia, and she was more beautiful than anyone could ever imagine. She brought the world happiness, and everyone respected her. However, one day a new God appeared out of nowhere. His name was Tylonstus, and he arrived with the maleficent intent to rebuild the world as his own, darker land. As you can imagine, Ophelia wanted nothing more to prevent this, so she attempted to seal Tylonstus in the Earth's core. She succeeded, but Tylonstus dragged her down with him, thus ending the reign of any god on this planet. With the last of her power, the goddess Ophelia created two female humans that were infused with her own power, the power you now call "mahstion". These two humans reproduced, and their predecessors did the same, generation after generation, until the tenth of Earth's population today became capable of using the power. Alas, over these years, memories of the Goddess soon faded, yet somehow the memories of the tyrant, Tylonstus, survived. Carn adopted him as their god of worship, and now the world is torn because of it."

She looked over the group of youth and smiled. "We are all distant descendants of Ophelia, and as such we are charged with a duty. Carn's constant offerings of young women to Tylonstus have begun to unravel the seal he is contained within. If Rosaline had been sacrificed a few weeks ago, there would already be nothing left. Even so, Tylonstus' darkness has begun to surface through a variety of methods, including the way Rod became so corrupt. It is our duty to prevent this evil from continuing to surface. As of now I'm unaware as to how we can achieve this goal, but I'm sure we can find a way."

"Now, I am called what we like to be referred to as a "fael", which in my language means "other"." Mistral continued, apparently with the intent of informing the group about her in more detail. "Every mahstion user has a fael within them, but they remain dormant until they are needed most. In Reid's case, I was awakened by his desire to save Adela. I am Reid, and Reid is me, we are two sides of one coin. The reason I am female is because the fael represents the opposite of their "reila" or "container". I may not be acting like it right now, but my usual personality is quite opposite of Reid's dry personality, it is just important I take this seriously." Hey Reid scolded her mentally at the dry personality comment.

"Fael's are represented by two entities. There are the "plufael", which represent the good in the reila's heart, and the "negafael", which represent the evil within the reila's heart. Negafael tend to consume their reila and take control, much like what occurred when Reid was forced to kill Rod by his negafael, Maelstrom. Since a fael and their reila are one person, they can feed off of each other's power, granted them abilities not usually possible for an average mahstion user. For example, I could permit Reid the power to move much faster, and strengthen his wionus based attacks. We can also assume control of each other's forms, as I've shown today. Basically, he can assume this form if need be, though I doubt he'll want to, and I can take control of his form if the need arises once again. I can also manifest myself in other manners, like speaking to you all through thoughts."

The girl extended her arm, revealing a ball of white energy that lacked a mahstion signature. "Like I said, usually you would have to NEED your fael before it would appear, but utilizing this energy I can awaken your faels now." The ball began glowing brighter, before shattering into a flurry of small beams that pierced the hearts of the group. "You should now find yourselves being transported into your own mind, where you will meet your other half. Have you any questions when you return, you can ask me. However, be quick, for I doubt Reid wants me to keep this form much longer."

OOC: Sorry guys, your fael has to be the opposite gender. This post was kind of weird funny in it's own way. XD

Shiney
October 7th, 2007, 03:11 PM
OOC: Crappy first post, sincerest apologies. Trying to get the feel for this character again.

Bobby was in one of his usual melancholy stalkings, which meant that he was upon the sight before he realised there was something amiss. His heyes were on the leather cap of his stump, his arm turned upward to that the long sleeve fell away to reveal the brown elather surface, studded with iron. "You're a mess, you're a cripple. Tealia might train you now thatthey're about to go to war, but don't expect them to put a cripple like you in anything important. Even if you are a damned fine swordsman..." He scolded himself, tempering himself with loathing and anger. Still, there was a chance that the 'Mashtion Scar' might be useful. He doubted it though, the dark attrocity on his head would probably only further penalize him, thanks to his luck.

Finally shaken from his revire, he took several moments stopped on the walk outside the cafe to stare openly. What on earth was tha girl on the table doing? Moreover, what was that light? Lastly, and most importantly, WHY IN THE NAME OF TYLONSTUS WAS IT COMING TOWARDS HIM?! As it hit him, he felt his vision darkening, and expecting the blackness of unconsciousness, or death, he was quite suprised when he simply lost himself to swirls of earthy murk, from light tan of a sandstorm, to the deep near black of deep minerals...

Slowly, they began to solidify. A cave, in complete darkness. There was no sight, yet somehow, he saw. The walls, the celing and floor lined with crystals that could have been bright with color, but in the void of light were as black as all else. He stood face to face with a strange figure, who had the light. It wasn't that she gave off light, or as if some light shone on her, but she seemed simply immune to the darkness of the cave.

The figure that stood before him was beautiful, female, yet clearly not human. Her skin seemed sculpted, as though of redstone into a delicate, slightly angular, yet somehow soft and enticing face. the eyes had no pupils, or a better word would be no irises. It was hard to tell, since they glinted a pure shining black like onyx. Her hair was comprised of fine, almost crystalline strands of jet that hung down, just barely brushing her shoulders. She was clad in a tan garb of what appeared to be sandstone, a full dress, though that wasn't quite the word. It looked as though it was emulating hide of some sort. Looking down at himself, he saw that he was clad in the same, like sand made cloth.

He glared at her, seeing the pity clearly in her eyes. Who was she to judge? Seemingly reacting to his thought, she spoke, in a soft voice, like the caress of wind through a cave. "I'm you, bobby." He raised an eyebrow at her. "Really? Yes, I can clearly see the family resemblance." he said sarcasticly, gaining a small smile from her. "You don't eavesdrop much, do you? Just listen, and I'll explain everything. I'm what you would call a Fael, and my name..."

Loki
October 7th, 2007, 07:48 PM
OoC// I don't have word on this computer right now, so I don't have spellchecker yet. x_x; So there might be like... a lot of error's in this post. </3 And I got REALLY lazy after Adela's thing. Having four characters is a pain in the butt. xD

iC//

Aertan, if nothing else, was somewhat disgusted at Reid's sudden change in gender. Alicel, like usual, couldn't bear but to burst into uncontrollable laughter, but quieted to listen to She-Rei- errr... Mistral explained the dots on their foreheads, as she explained Tylonstus, and as she explained pretty much... everything. Adela, who had been fished back after being unable to find the healer Shiraume, turned a deft shade of green when Reid suddenly made the big switch, and held her tongue only because of Mistral's embarrassing statement that Reid had wanted to save her. (She didn't need any saving, by the way, she had been, perfectly fine, on her own. Could've beaten that weird demon thing to a pulp if she'd wanted to. You know, the works.)

When Mistral began to talk about the gods, Aertan's left hand twitched, and at the word 'tyrant', the rose began to glow feverently, with renewed vigor as an incredible number of doubts for Tylonstus flew through his mind. It was obvious that it was taking all of Aertan's self-control not to yell out in the middle of Mistral's speech, as he was digging his fingers into his palm so hard that unmistakeable drops of crimson fell to the floor. He was sure that of all the people in the room, he wanted to hear the bits about Ophelia and Tylonstus the most. This was one doubt that was not in his mind. The glow began to ebb when Mistral moved on to talk about Fael's, however, and Aertan took a deep breath, just barely relaxing his fist.

It was quick. The pain in his fist disappeared when the light seemed to engulf him, and he landed roughly on a brick floor. He was first aware of the fact that the tattoo on his left hand was gone. His hand was unblemished, and he could flex it freely without the stiff burning on the back of his hand. The second thing he realized was that he was bathed in a glowing and flickering light. He scrambled to his feet as he came to the conclusion that he was in a burning throne room, the flames surrounding him on all sides. Aertan tentatively waved his hand slowly through the flames, and though they burned brightly, they were not hot. Even he felt the heat of his own mahstion. His head jerked to the side when he heard a cackle, however, as the strangest woman he'd ever seen sat upon the brick throne that seemed to fall right out of the ceiling. She wore only a red bikini, and, as Aertan noted, had sustained no burns from the flames that engulfed her as well. Although, she had quite the numerous amount of tattoo's, as her entire body was covered in swirly and zigzagging red ink, while she wore a pair of red lace-up boots on her feet. Her hair was aflame, the short cut pulled behind her head and held at bay by a very odd looking mask. The white bone was stained with red, thick horn like spikes protruding from the back of the mask, and the woman waved her hand lazily, the crimson painted on her long nails gesturing around the room.

"The flames don't harm those of Fionus mahstion." She said, crossing one leg over the other, "And this here mask, isn't it cute? I killed a Ruby Lion Fish and decided that it's skull looked really nice."

Aertan raised an eyebrow as she continued to chatter away, "My name is Hoeten, but they call me Haeon't because it sounds a lot cooler, don'tcha think? Anyway, I'm your plufael, and Geote is your negafael, he's annoying as heck because he's just a stick in the mud, if you know what I mean. I'm so glad to be able to see you in person, I mean, those wings of yours are so unflattering."

Aertan automatically glanced to his left and jumped when he saw no hand, no knobbly ends, just a regular wing without arms. He turned to his right, and Geote waved at him, shrugging as best one arm could shrug.

"Shut up." Haeon't snapped at Geote, "I don't want to hear a word out of you. This is my time. Go bug sweetie on your own time."

"Sweetie?" Aertan finally spoke up, disgusted.

"So anyway," Haeon't continued, ignoring Aertan's annoyed expression, "As you can see-"

"We're not curses of Tylonstus. Quite the opposite really, since we're children of Ophelia. Against the tyrant, naturally."

"SHUT UP. SHUT! UP!" Haeon't shrieked, and Aertan decided that Haeon't was an opportunist, taking advantage of the fact that she was larger then Geote at the moment, "Stupid, freakin', negafael."

And with that, Aertan sat upright in his seat, blinking around before shaking his head, frowning at the sight of his bloody palm and the tattoo that had returned to its rightful place on his left hand.

-

Adela stared squarely at the boy who was dressed in an outfit with fabric designed exactly like her own, except the garments were a dark onyx shade of black, lined with gold, the top a sleeveless mandarin collared shirt over a pair of pure black trousers that practically made him disappear into the great shadows cast by the tall forest around them. Bathed in moonlight, he looked incredibly, sickly pale, and his black hair that hung in his yellow eyes couldn't repress the disgustingly kind eyes that were sleepy, his face stretched into a soft smile.

"Ugh." Was all Adela could offer, along with a curled lip of disgust.

The boy laughed lightly, and Adela cringed.

"You truly are an enigma, princess. You're normally so cheerful and glad." He said, and before Adela could interject with a crude comment, he introduced himself with a formal bow, "My name is Jeckt, please do feel free to call upon me at any time you wish for my company or assistance. I'm at your beck and call."

"Good," Adela snapped, "Let's start first, don't call me princess. It's disturbing. Second, don't smile at me with that freaky blank smile that just screams your going to do something freaky to me. And last, don't talk like your from the first century, it's weird."

Jeckt tapped his chin thoughtfully, before saying, "Well, I can oblige to only one, my apologies. What would you like me to address you as?"

"Master, Superior, something like that." Adela said haughtily before quickly waving her hands in defense as Jeckt opened his mouth to speak, "No, no, I wasn't serious, that's even freakier then Princess. Well... it's close. Just call me Adela, that works fine."

"But that's rude."

"Er, no, it's not."

Jeckt smiled, and Adela determinedly stared anywhere but at his freakishly good-natured face, "Very well, Adela. I do believe I should meet Mistral soon, after all, we're technically engaged, aren't we? What a strange prospect. I've never met her, only seen her just now. Ah, the world works strange fates."

"...Are we done here?"

"It is against your desires to speak with me?"

"You're creeping me out. Just a little."

-

"I'm Kranius." Said the white haired teen, wearing a white cotton shenti about his waist along with a dark blue scarf around his waist, fashioned as a belt, "And I dunno, that's really all there is."

Alicel shifted to her other foot and said, "Why don't you ever help me in battle? Like Mistral and Reid??"

"You've never asked for it." Kranius smirked, "Besides, you've never wanted to fight, so I don't exactly get the chance to, now do I?"

"I did! When Aertan kidnapped me, remember? I fought him, but my powers were just the same as before?"

"Yeah, well, you were only three days my reila. It's called the element of surprise. I mean look, aren't you surprised there's such a handsome guy living in your mind? I mean honestly, most girls would-"

"Most, girls. I personally think the fact that you're only half clothed is a major turn-off, and your white hair makes you look like you're an old man, and you're kind of flabby, not much muscle, so I don't understand why you're flashing the world with your pathetic-"

Kranius turned a good shade of red as he snapped, "I'm your opposite, and since you're so intent on surrounding yourself with things you like, naturally I don't. Besides, I like this style, thanks. You might not be able to feel it, but it's really hot on this godforsaken island of a brain. Next time you're about to die, don't expect me to help!"

And with that, Alicel was booted out of her own mind. Naturally, the first meeting didn't go so well. As was expected of an Alicel opposite. As someone with little confidence in herself, but a good knack at acting it, Kranius must've been the most pompous prick on the face of the planet, a boy who sat on an ego as big as the world he lived in. And as far as Alicel was concerened, her brain was not a godforsaken island.

~

"M-Me??" Villa stammered, "I-I'm the s-sixth apostle, Villa. It's a pleasure to m-make your acquaintence." She curtsied as best as she could, before she continued to stumble over her words. Her face turned bright red at the mention that she was pretty, (as praise was something that she was unaccustomed to) and she managed a small smile for the younger apostle.

"Ah, I seem to have failed as an experiment. I don't remember what I've been doing for this past year. It hurts when I remember those things. But I'm supposed to tell them what I've seen and what I remember, but, I don't know anything, so they're really angry and I don't know, so..." Villa paused, unable to think of how to go on, "I don't really know what to do. My missions comprise mostly of being an experiment, so, I've kind of failed. I can only remember little things. I don't know what I've been doing this past year."

Smiling, Villa turned to Cress and said, "You must be the newest apostle. Your awfully nice."

Alter Ego
October 9th, 2007, 11:37 AM
OOC: Aaack, I just realized that this post is going to be freakin' enormous. O.O Eh-heh...hope it makes sense. xD

IC:

Faewyn had still been in a state of shock as they were escorted out of the infirmary room. There had been so much happening that it was giving her a headache; too much, just...just too much. First Reid had awoken and everyone was going to be happy and have a wedding, then the next thing she knew she had been in the middle of all that horror and violence, and then...her glance shifted to Reece again, her hands still firmly clinging to his arm, and then she had found one of the few people in this world who had actually called her 'friend' again. She had wanted to be happy, to chatter away like her usual self, to ask about everything that had happened to him since he left uncle Kain's clinic with that newly mended wing, to tell him about all the incredible things she had witnessed, to introduce her old friend to her new friends, and yet-she sighed lightly, seating herself by the table around which they were holding their little conference, yet she couldn't bring herself to speak.

There was one thing she could do, though...the girl's hands instinctively darted for notebook and pencil at Reid's sudden transformation, the leaden tip dancing fervently across the rapidly filling pages as Mistral introduced herself and proceeded to talk to them about...well, about everything more or less. Rod's killer, the true identity of Thylonstus, the origin of mahstion...everything. Faewyn was absolutely spellbound, her lips not moving to utter a single word and her eyes not leaving the peculiar apparition that was controlling Reid. With the explanation about the negafaels, and specifically the part about one of them having been the one to kill Rod, a huge burden was lifted from Faewyn's conscience. It hadn't been Reid, it hadn't! And she had known it! Still, the prospect of something like that existing within Reid was unnerving, and when Mistral proceeded to explain that they all possessed one, the girl wasn't exactly relieved.

There was no time for interjection, however, as the fael proceeded to unleash some kind of energy at them, the girl's consciousness fading before she managed to voice her fears and a pleasant darkness slipping over her eyes...

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

Within the confines of her mind, Faewyn groaned, slowly coming to again. She was lying face-down on what felt like cold, wet grass...except for the minor detail that grass wasn't usually crimson in color. Rising to her feet, the girl surveyed her surroundings. She was standing on a floating island of some sort, moisture hung in the air, small drops of rain sprinkling down from above, and from somewhere above she could hear the distant rumble of thunder. The source of this was unclear, however, as the entire islet was draped in a shroud of thick, white fog which prevented her from seeing anything but the small patch of crimson grass she was standing on and-she paused, squinting into the fog; she couldn't be sure,

"Hello?" Faewyn called anxiously, walking towards the figure. It seemed to be male, judging by the height, but whoever it was, he had his back turned and paid no heed to her inquiry. Faewyn gave an involuntary shudder, something about this didn't feel right; wasn't the fael supposed to come out and greet her? "Umm...excuse me?" she asked, softly grasping the stranger's shoulder and turning it so he would face her, "Are you my-?"

Faewyn froze in horror at the sight in front of her, letting out a shriek and backing off, her hand clasping her mouth as the mangled body of Rod veered around to stare at her with empty eyesockets, falling face first onto the grass with a dull thud as fresh blood from his wounds mingled with the crimson of the grass, renewing its color, before the fog swept in over the cadaver, concealing it from view.

"Aww...what's the matter?" taunted a high-pitched, male voice from behind the girl, "You didn't seem so bothered last time, Fay."

The girl whirled around, not sure whether to be relieved to notice that this figure was fully alive. It was a male of about the same height as Faewyn, but that was pretty much where the similarities ended. The being before her was thin and wiry way beyond even Faewyn's standards, like he had been starved for a long time, slightly yellowish skin clung to his frame like wet paper, muscles and bone partly visible through it, his wings little more than blackened stumps sticking out from his back. His hair was white, hanging in an unorganized mess over his thin face and down to about mid-back behind him, a pair of slightly maddened, light green eyes peering out from beneath the mess of locks; the only true sign of life he exhibited. The being was draped in a frayed, black robe of some sort, its sleeves long since torn, and a dark green belt securing it around his thin waist. His feet and hands were both bare, their nails yellowed and lengthened to claws, and his mouth was not doing much better, even as the row of razor-sharp teeth grinned smugly at her. His feet were secured together by means of a bright, silver-colored chain which attached them to a wooden cross behind him, the feet dangling just a few inches above the ground. Similar chains held both his wrists at bay, and another pair snaked their way into an X-shape across his chest, partially laid bare by the decadent state of his robes, even his neck bore a thick metal collar which secured it to the cross, ensuring that the being could not move as much as a muscle.

"Who-" Faewyn stammered, taking a precautionary step back, "Who are you?!"

"You don't know?" the being replied, pretending to sound deeply hurt, "All the times you called on me and you still don't know my name..."

"Called on you?" the girl echoed, "I-I haven't-"

"Oh, please!" the creature on the cross snorted, "Think about it! Use that much-praised head of yours! Where do you think you got the strength to injure Haeon't? Who gave you the calm to observe your cadaver pal over there?" he shook his head as much as the collar would allow him, "Oh, Fay, Fay, Fay..." he tutted, "You really have to start paying attention."

"That-" Faewyn mumbled, "That throbbing in my mark, that was you, wasn't it? You're my fael?"

"Negafael to be precise." the creature corrected her, "Typhoeus, at your service. I'd scrape and bow, but..." he gave a hollow laugh, glancing at the chains, "...as you can see..."

The girl shuddered again, there was something deeply wrong about this creature, and that word...negafael? Didn't Mistral call that thing that killed Rod a negafael?

"Typhoeus..." she repeated, her glance hardening a bit, "Who chained you here?"

Typhoeus merely stared at her for a moment before bursting into another unnerving fit of laughter.

"Answer me!" Faewyn snapped, stamping her foot. On queue, a roll of thunder came in from the distance.

"Why you did, of course." the apparition replied matter of factly, "This is your mindscape, Fay, all that you see here is your own creation."

"But, then...Rod's body?"

"Oh yes; a very nice touch, that one." Typhoeus replied, the lunatic smile never leaving his lips, "Though personally, I'm partial to the slowly bleeding Rosaline over there..." he licked his lips in a sickening way, nodding towards the mist, though the collar turned this gesture almost unnoticeable, "You've got a deliciously twisted imagination, Fay."

"But I didn't!" Faewyn protested in horror, "I-I would never even want to imagine my friends-"

"Oh yes you would." Typhoeus retorted, "Don't lie to me, girl; I know all there is to know about you. Every fear, every doubt. Every dirty little secret you thought no-one would find out, every twisted fantasy you never dared to realize; you've fed them all to me, right here in this place. And I know, without a shadow of a doubt..." his glance went one step up in creepiness, "We're not so different, you and I."

"You're disgusting!" the girl replied.

Her darker half merely smiled in return, as if he had just been paid a compliment, "Why... Yes. I. Am." he replied, intoning each word carefully, "But unlike you, I see no need to hide it behind a mask of sickly sweet joy."

"You're wrong!" Faewyn persisted, shaking her head furiously, "Wrong, wrong, WRONG! I'll never be like you! Ever!" at her cry, the chains around the negafael's body tightened, binding him more firmly to the cross.

"That's right!" he jeered, "Lie to yourself! Delude yourself! The closer you bind me to your heart, the closer you are bound to me! Try to loosen the chains and you will only give me more space to move!" he cackled like a wicked witch, "Either way, you can't escape me...Fay. In the end all will be as I said it would be!"

"No!" Faewyn cried out desperately, tears streaming out of her eyes, the rain coming down in full force, "I refuse, I refuse to-"

"It's all his fancy, you know." interjected a new, calm voice, "He can only control you as much as you let him."

The girl blinked, wiping her eyes as a third figure approached from the fog. This one was also male, but certainly a relieving sight compared to Typhoeus. He seemed slightly shorter and younger, his face still bearing a hint of child-like roundness and smoothness, but the depth of his clear blue eyes seemed almost endless. The creature's skin pigment was about the same as Faewyn's, and his hair bore the same, vivid shade of teal, combed into a bowl haircut. Like his counterpart, the fael was draped in a robe, but his was snow white and well kept, and a couple of simple wooden sandals occupied his feet, and his wings were fully functional, seemingly formed of the mist itself.

"Ah...it looks like we've got party crasher." the negafael snorted, "Take a hike, saint-boy, she's mine!"

"Come." the other male remarked softly, paying no heed to Typhoeus as he grasped Faewyn's hand and pulled her upright, promptly turning her away from the specter at the cross and steadily marching them both towards the mist ahead, "This is your domain; not his." he whispered softly, "Silence your worries, shut your eyes and picture the happiest memory you can."

"I-" Faewyn hesitated.

"Please." her guide replied, giving the girl a friendly smile, "Trust me."

She nodded, shutting her eyes as she searched through the memories for something suitable. There was Reid's awakening, but that was directly followed by Rosaline's abduction. She wanted to remember the shopping, but there was Rod, and she didn't want to think of Rod right now. Then, then...she clenched her fists, willing her mind back, further back, before she had even met her friends, and there it was: bright and clear, that one blissful mother-daughter day; the trip to the mountains. A small, weak smile spread across Faewyn's face, and suddenly a strong gale whipped past her. Opening her eyes, the girl found the disturbing islet with the blood red grass and oppressive fog gone, replaced by a beautiful, green meadow, majestic mountains towering up on all sides and a small river running in from between the pine trees in the distance. It was a beautiful place, a natural reserve, her mother had told her, but Faewyn couldn't for the life of her understand how she had gotten there.

"Wha-?" the girl gasped, taking a few steps through the lush grass in sheer astonishment before turning to face her guide, who was smilingly lightly in a rather self-contented way, "How did we-?"

"This is your mindscape, Faewyn." the apparition replied, "It's a reflection of your mood. When you are content, it is a lush paradise, but when your heart is in disarray..."

"That place?"

The fael nodded solemnly, "When you arrived here, you were full of fear and your mindscape responded in kind. It turned into what you were afraid it might be.

"I see." Faewyn replied, "So does that mean that Typhoeus-?"

The male sighed, "Unfortunately not." he replied, "Typhoeus is indeed your negafael. But don't worry." he added, "As long as you remain at peace, he will not be able to reach you. Oh, but where are my manners?" he added in self-reprimand, "I am Isaire, your plufael." he gave her a flourishing bow, "Please call on me whenever you need my assistance."

The girl nodded, "A-alright." she replied somewhat shakily, "It's nice to meet you too...Isaire."

They both fell silent for a moment, watching the landscape, a warm, summer breeze causing the lush grass to rustle.

"You should probably start heading back." Isaire added after a while, "Your friends have probably already had their visions."

"But...what about you?" Faewyn asked.

"What about me?"

"If I leave...will, will you be alright?"

The fael chuckled, shaking his head, the mist wings swirling in unison, "How quickly you forget, Faewyn." he replied, "This place is your reflection. As long as you are well, so am I."

"I see." the girl replied, "So...this will all be here when I come back?"

"If you wish it to be."

Faewyn's smile widened, "Alright then, I'll be back as soon as I-" she paused, frowning a little, "Umm...Isaire, how do I get out of here?"

"Not to worry." the fael chuckled, his voice growing distant and the landscape blurring, "Somebody else is already arranging that for you."

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

Reece, quite frankly, was puzzled. For one, no-one had bothered to introduce themselves to him, so the majority of the people around the table had been complete strangers. Then they had embarked on what seemed to be a meeting that would clear everything up for them, but the next thing he knew, the injured guy - Reid, was it? - had suddenly switched genders and started talking like a fantasy novel, about gods and faels and all that rot. In all honesty, the soldier wasn't quite sure what to make of it, but it sounded like a righteous quest, and he was never one to back down from a righteous quest.

Well, he wasn't given much of a choice on the matter either. Mistral had barely finished talking before she had cast some kind of spell to send all of the people at the table off to la-la land, Reece included.

"Ergh..." the man mumbled, rubbing his eyes. He felt like he was standing on a hot beach, and that was pretty much what it seemed like as well. Well...if beaches had ash gray sand, anyway. Regardless, this place was full of it, and for good measure someone had set up a ring of fire around the area he was in, the blaze reaching up towards the darkened sky above, filling the place with heat. Wiping the sweat of his brow, Reece peered into the haze, he noticed a figure not far from him, though its appearance was blurred. Walking closer, Reece noted that the being in question was, in fact, a woman. Regal, that was perhaps the best way to describe her. Her stature was tall and imposing, even as she sat on her knees in the sand. Despite the heat, not a single bead of sweat crossed her skin, which - the soldier noted - bore a slight tint of gray. Her hair, however, was bright, flaming red, reaching down from her head to the ground in a mass of elegant curls. She wore a surprisingly plain, red dress which covered both her chest and her legs well beyond the call of mere modesty, and on top her head she even wore a vermillion-colored crown. Her eyes, however, were obscured by the locks of red hair, betraying no sign of having noticed the soldier.

"Nice place you've got here." Reece began, walking towards her as he wiped the sweat from his brow, "Real nice, love what you did with the fire and...volcanic ash? So you're my fael, right?

The woman merely tilted her head towards him for a moment, gesturing towards the ground in front of her, whereupon gray and white sand was organized in neat squares, a number of chess pieces arranged on each side, red on hers; white on his.

"Oh...I get it." Reece replied, "I have to beat you in a game to get my answers, right? It's some kind of test?"

No response.

"Not a very talkative type, are you?" Reece sighed, settling down on his side of the makeshift board. The red pieces most likely stood for black. The first move was his. The sand was hot and made his feet feel like they were on fire when he sat down, but he refused to back down, grasping the fourth pawn from the right and moving it two squares forward. It was then that an asymmetry in the setup caught his eye.

"Looks like you have me at a slight disadvantage." the soldier remarked casually, gesturing towards the empty square where his queen should have been.

The woman's lips curved up ever so slightly as she mimicked the opening maneuver, "I thought you'd enjoy a challenge." she replied, her voice as steady and unflappable as her countenance.

"So you talk after all." Reece remarked with a chuckle.

No response.

The soldier shook his head in confusion, before something suddenly dawned to him, a smile similar to the woman's working its way up his features.

"I get it." he said, grasping another pawn and moving it forward before intoning his next question, "One answer per move, am I right?"

"Correct." the woman replied, another chess piece moving across the sand.

Reece nodded, proceeding with his next move without hesitation, "Let's get to it, then. Are you my fael?"

"Indeed I am."

Another pawn marched into the fray, the two opposing forces staring each other down in preparation for the upcoming conflict.

"Your name?"

"Sieglinde."

"And I can call upon you for help at any time?"

"Correct."

Question absolved question as the game proceeded, colored chess pieces criss-crossing over the sand as pawn fell to knight, knight to bishop, bishop to pawn, and pawn to tower. Reece had always fancied himself a decent chess player, but Sieglinde - it seemed - had each move figured out. Every time he thought the next move would clinch it, it would turn out to be a complicated gambit of some sort and the crimson lady would claim more than her just compensation for any losses until eventually...

"Stalemate." Reece remarked in a slightly disgruntled tone. In terms of advantage he had been losing, bad, and a victory would have been optimistic in the extreme, yet somehow this conclusion wasn't satisfactory...perhaps because of the haunting feeling that it had been handed to him, "So...I guess the game is over?"

"So it would seem." his opponent replied, rising up from the ground and dusting off her clothes.

"You gave me that stalemate, though, didn't you?"

No response.

"You really know how to annoy me, you know that?"

The last thing Reece saw before departing from the bizarre world was that same, enigmatic smile playing on Sieglinde's lips.

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

This was all going to end in lecture, he knew it. It was almost amusing that they still bothered. His glance idly swept the office, crossing over the bare stone walls, the spartan bookcase crammed with religious tomes, and finally the little desk by which he sat, a small table lamp illuminating the space - quite redundant, he found himself thinking - as well as both people occupying the room, a number of papers strewn across the desk.

"What do you have to say for yourself?" this time, the creature in question was a low-ranking priest, balding and pudgy, his wrinkled face looking like it was on the verge of imploding on itself, his robes covered with the stench of sweat, cheap grease and a certain other substance which really wasn't worth analyzing further. His hazel eyes, however, were alight with righteous fury. Where oh where did these sorry excuses for living beings derive such immeasurable pride from? He would really have to get to the bottom of that one of these days.

"I am not quite sure I understand you, Padre." his voice was of a rather light, feminine quality but the complete monotony gave it a chilling edge, and Velin didn't miss out on that tiny tinge of fear in the priest's eyes as he observed the priest through equally impassive, light blue eyes, "I have done nothing wrong."

"Nothing wrong?!" the priest spat out furiously, "Four acolytes, Dahn! Four acolytes were murdered within these halls!"

"Not acolytes." the other replied calmly, "Traitors."

"Lies!" the priest boomed, "I trained those acolytes myself, Joseph for one would never have-!"

"Joseph was found guilty of treason against the great Thylonstus and his corpse, I gather, was within the explicitly forbidden area of the archives. Really, the burning of his tattoo should be proof enough of his treason."

"I would agree if I were convinced that those burns were caused by the tattoo."

Velin tilted his head ever so slightly to signify polite puzzlement. Though his smooth, androgenous face remained as passive as ever, the look in his eyes seemed to turn a bit more intense, "Are you implying something, padre?"

"I swear by Thylonstus..." the priest hissed, "If it was up to me I would have every last one of you abominations burned at the stake."

"But it is not your decision..." Velin continued conversationally, rising up from his chair and wandering over to the priest, whispering the last bit into his ear, "...is it, padre? Now if this is all, I shall take my leave of you. Good day."

"Hold!" the priest called, "I didn't give you permission to leave."

"...but surely you wouldn't wish to prevent me from doing the work of the great Thylonstus?" Velin filled in, "After all...the youngest of our flock was assigned a rather delicate matter to see to today. I should hate to think that something would go wrong with the sacrifice..."

The priest merely glared at him, but couldn't find a retort, "I'm keeping my eye on you, apostle." he sneered at the departing figure's back, "And I swear to Thylonstus I shall get to the bottom of your scheme!"

"You do as you like, padre." Velin replied impassively, pushing open the white door of the supervising priest's office, one of many within the area, and stepping out into the dank hallway of the apostles' quarters, flicking aside the single strand of his gray hair that had taken up a reddish tinge as he made a mental note of who the next 'traitor' within the clergy would be. Fortunately, that dogmatic fool was so open in his dealings; it wouldn't take much to frame him. Just as he was contemplating this, however, Velin's sensitive ears caught on to voices from the hallway; not stupid acolytes looking for a thrill, no...a deep, blood red color began creeping up another strand at the front of his face. To anyone who had been around the first apostle long enough, this would have been a clear sign to tread lightly.

One could have said that Velin tread down the halls, but it was truly more of a form of floating, a small but steady release of Wionus energy maintaining his steps just above the level of the floor and thus effectively hampering all sound from his advance upon the two younger apostles, well...right up to the point when he addressed them.

"Please do not let me interrupt." the first apostle remarked in mock-courtesy, his monotone voice giving the words their usual sarcastic undertone as he loomed over Villa, his black, feathered wings stretched out complacently, "After all, I am certain that whatever it is you are discussing is far more important than the tasks both of you have been appointed with." the gaze of his light blue eyes crossed over both of them, a clear sign that an incorrect answer would turn out most painful, "I am correct in this, am I not?"


OOC: Umm...yeah, would you believe that this is the downsized version? xD

parallelzero
October 15th, 2007, 08:02 PM
OOC: Expect a bad post structure wise. It's been so long. XD

"Hmm, peculiar. For one so old you certainly don't know when to hold your tongue like an old man should." Cress spat in a tone that was lined with hostility. He subtly moved in between Villa and Velin, and his red eyes continued to glare up at the intimidating first apostle. "The girl I've been charged with looking after, Rosaline. I have moved her to the designated holding cell as requested. Therefore, I have no further appointed tasks until I have to attend to her later on." He bared his fangs, the glare continuing. Out of all the other apostles, Cress hated Velin the most, and every time they had met face to face the discussions had been hostile. "I suggest, that in the future, you do not step out of line and attempt to give me orders. You may be the eldest, and you may be the one charged with handling reports in regards to our operations, but you are not in charge of either Villa or myself." The apostle boy prepared himself. Chances were he was going to feel pain for even thinking of standing up against this man. All of the other's feared him, but Cress did not. He was either really brave, or really stupid.

"Sister, you know we are forbidden entrance into this place." A young girl, appearing no older than ten years old said to another, who looked exactly like the original. Both of the girls had curly, pastel purple hair that fell down to their ankles, two pairs of demonic wings erupting from their backs. One pair was blue in colour, while the other pair was red, symbolizing their purpose as apostles of Wation plus Fionus. These two girls, both dressed in white sun dresses with an accompanying pair of straw sandals, were the third and fourth apostles respectively. Their names were Kira and Kyra, and they were inseparable twins, despite being created weeks apart.

Kira's playful pastel purple eyes met the cautious pastel purple eyes of her sister, both faces cursed cursed with an eternal red blush. That Kyra was always trying to kill her fun. Despite being identical twins, they did not have identical personalities. Kira was the eldest of the two. She was playful, and loved to hold her age above the head of Kyra. She also lacked any form of common sense. On the other hand, Kyra was intelligent, calm, and understanding. Kyra was often favored by the other apostles and by the Carn military, and it made Kira jealous. Despite Kyra's warning, however, Kira flicked the light switch to the room they had infiltrated. When the lights came on, every single detail of the small room came to life. The cracks in the black tiled floor, walls, and ceiling, the dim crimson lantern hanging from the roof, and the red light of the crimson coloured bars from the laser cell in the center of the room. Within this cell was what the curious apostle wanted to examine - the girl the newbie had been sent to capture, Rosaline Dian.

The subject was still unconscious, as Kira discovered after running over to peer into the cell. It was just as she had been told. This girl was very pretty. "Look! Look! Look at her white wings! They're like snow!" She pointed out enthusiastically to her sister as her finger shot out in the direction of the wings drooped over the girl's - who was lying on her stomach - back. Kyra did nothing but sigh and nod as she followed after her sister. In this light, the inhuman features of these two girls became more apparent. For starters, they both had long, dark purple, hairless, forked tails present slithering behind them through a holes in their dresses. Like Cress, they also possess elongated ears, though there were not nearly as long and pointy as his, and they also possessed a pair of tiny lumps on their heads that could be considered horns. As Kira grinned at her sister, the beastly fangs of a monster appeared. The most horrific feature of their heads, however, was that they both possessed a third eye positioned in the center above the other two. Kira's was blue, while Kyra's was red.

The two girls jumped with a start as the door slammed behind them. They turned to see Azyla Astrange, the second apostle, and their caretaker, leaning against the door with an indifferent look upon his emotionless face. Azyla was an apostle born from Wionus and Fionus, and this was represented by his large pair of feathered wings. The left wing was green, while the right one was blue, which also held true for his eyes. Physically, he looked around the age of eighteen. It was impossible to tell what he was wearing at this moment, since a black trenchcoat covered his entire body, conflicting with his short cut navy blue hair. "We have to leave..." He said, void of emotion, to the two girls as he reopened the door. Azyla rarely showed any emotion, which made him an excellent caretaker for the two girls, who loved to annoy others. The twins sighed before resigning to the boy they considered their big brother, and left the room.

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

Mistral snapped her fingers, releasing everyone from their trance. The fael girl stood up on solid ground once more, before proceeding to speak. "You now all have a mental bond with one another. You shall be able to communicate through thoughts with one another, and us faels can do the same." Her body began to glow green once more. "Now, I must permit Reid his body once more. I suggest you head towards the snowy nation of Beta if you wish to learn more about the crisis the world faces." The light then consumed the girl and cleared a few moments later, Reid left in her place.

"Ugh... what happened?" Reid muttered, holding his head. His eyes shot open as his memory came back to him. "Right. Mistral took control and made me a girl..." He shuddered before continuing. "ANYWAYS, what's our next plan of action?"

Alter Ego
October 16th, 2007, 02:09 AM
OOC: HOMG, PC is finally back! It took s-o-o-o long...;__; *Whinecling* IC time! ^0^

IC:

Not as much as muscle moved on Velin as he witnessed Cress' self-righteous little rant, but it didn't take a genius to notice that the deep, blood red color of the strand at the front was slowly but surely seeping into its neighbors, "Hmm, peculiar." he echoed in his usual impassive tone, "For one so young you seem to have a very poor memory, Cress. I am the one in charge of discipline within this little unit, so unless I am mistaken that would make you the one out of line, seventh apostle." there was a distinct tinge of distaste in Velin's gaze. He had never been fond of this particular apostle and his taste for bravado, and judging by the way it was acting the feeling was mutual, "I thought that not even you could misinterpret a simple command of 'fetch', yet you certainly took your time..." his gaze intensified, "Need I remind you of the five virtues of an apostle?" he raised his right hand, extending one claw-like nail at the time as he counted off the words, "Efficiency. Punctuality. Reliability. Devotion. But above all..." the last nail shot out at lightning speed, "Discipline." he gave Cress an appraising look, "Oddly enough, you seem to have forgotten all of them. Oh, well..." he lowered his hand in a gesture that seemed to suggest dismissing the matter, but in a blur of wionus-propelled motion the first apostle had closed what little distance had remained between him and Cress, his right hand grasping the apostle's arm right above the point where the glove ended and the five, blade-like nails digging into the unprotected skin, accompanied by a sickening sizzling sound and the smell of burnt flesh.

"Perhaps you shall have an easier time keeping them in mind now that they are branded into your skin." Velin remarked casually, releasing his grip to reveal a set of five charred cuts at the spots where his nails had entered; he hadn't cut through to the bone - that would have been wasteful - but they were certainly deep enough to be quite unpleasant, "The mahstion in those cuts will linger for about two days. For that time, I would suggest that you do not attempt to heal them." he continued conversationally, retracting the nails to their usual state and still addressing Cress from over his shoulder, "Contemplate on why you received them and we might avoid such inconveniences in the future. I will expect a detailed report of your subpar performance on this mission within the day. As for you..." he cast a disdainful glance at Villa, "I have been asked to inform you that your contribution to today's experiments was most unsatisfactory, so I would suggest that you go and work on your meditation exercises. There has been talk of terminating failed projects and I should hate to find either of you on that list. Good day."

With that, Velin strode off down the hall without sparing as much as an additional glance for either of the two, the blood red color in his hair slowly retracting in favor of the usual gray and the black pendant around his neck swaying back and forth in queue with his movements. The threat to Villa had been a complete bluff, of course. She was far too valuable a resource to squander. After all...she could remember. Weak and pitiful though she was, she was still Velin's best bet at regaining his own memories, but there was no need to tell her that...after all, thinking that you were fully replaceable tended to do wonders for people's job motivation.

Cress, however...Velin's hair briefly took up a light, reddish tinge as the insolent seventh returned to his thoughts, but he soon calmed himself again, pausing by the strategy room and walking over to the center of the room where he lowered himself into a sitting position, his eyes narrowing to the point where they really weren't more than two stripes of blue in the dark, his standard meditating position. Cress served a purpose too...he was loud, rebellious, and foolishly open about it. In other words: he was a perfect scapegoat. A tiny tinge of teal briefly entered one of the strands at the front, yes: if there was one thing you could count on it was that Cress Alberto Tylonstus would create a scene wherever he went. And as it so happened...a scene might yet turn out to be just what Velin needed.

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

"Fay! Fay, wake up!"

"Mmm?"

Faewyn blinked, slowly adjusting to being back in the real world. She found herself lying on the floor, her chair toppled over and a sizable bruise on her left arm, which - Faewyn gathered - she had fallen down on, a worried Reece crouched over her.

"Wha-what happened?" Faewyn mumbled, absent-mindedly rubbing the bruise as she got back to her feet.

"That would be my question." her friend replied, "Everyone else woke up from their visions just fine, but you kept twisting and turning; you even knocked that chair over. What happened in there?"

"It's...sort of blurry." the girl half-lied, giving Reece a faint smile as she rose to her feet, her glance traveling to the others to forestall any further inquiry, "I'm alright, though, really. I-I guess it was just sort of overwhelming." the soldier didn't look convinced, but seemed content to drop the matter as Reid spoke up, inquiring what they should do next.

"Yeah, I'd like to know that too." Faewyn, who had completely missed Mistral's announcement, chimed in.

"Oh, you're going to like this one." Reece replied, grinning, "To you guys and anyone else who spaced out through that; we're going to Beta. Mistral's instructions, no less."

Faewyn's eyes widened, a blissful little smile spreading across her lips, "Really?" she asked, but then a thought struck her, "We? Reece, are you..?"

"Of course I am." Reece replied vigorously, before realizing that perhaps this was slightly uncouth as he turned to address the rest of the group, scratching his head, "I mean, I know we haven't even been properly introduced yet and I'll be the first to admit that I'm still really confused about this whole thing, but I'd still like to help if that's alright with you." he addressed his plea primarily to Reid, who appeared to be the leader of the group, "I mean, apparently I have one of those whatchacallits inside of me too, and by the sound of things it would appear that you need all the help you can get. Besides..." he cast a sideward glance at Faewyn, "Friends of Faewyn's are friends of mine, and Reece Everard never leaves a friend in trouble. My glaive is at your service."

parallelzero
October 16th, 2007, 06:28 AM
OOC: Post from school, GO!

"Velin~!" Kira shouted affectionatley as all three of her eyes caught a glimpse of who the twins considered their leader. After Azyla had removed them from the room, he had gone off somewhere, leaving the two twins to wander the halls unsupervised once again. Out of boredom, they had wandered into the darkness of the strategy room and hidden themselves so that they could scare any Carn soldiers who dared enter the room. Alas, Velin came in before any soldiers, and with their vision enhanced by their third eyes, Kira automatically recogized the leader and leapt on to his back, most likely disrupting whatever he was doing. "Hiya Velin! Whatcha doing?! Can we help? We're bored! Hey! Stop it Kyra!" The girl barked a her calm companion, who was pulling her sister from Velin's back with a sigh.

Kyra curtsied before Velin, forcing her hyperactive other to do the same. "I apologize sir. As you know, we have have been cooped up for weeks now without work, and Azyla isn't the best man to act as an entertainer. We were curious as to if you had any possible work for us." She shot a glare at Kira as she spoke in her calmest voice, albeit still one full of childlike cuteness, who was about to speak up but refrained after her sister's glance. Kyra's third eye blinked as it looked Velin over. Her eye had the uncanny ability to analyze anything, breaking it down into data that she could easily remember. Kyra, if anyone, was aware of every apostle's strengths and weaknesses, and Velin did not fly under that radar. She knew ticking number 1 off would result in some painful consequences.

Cress, in the meantime, was learning this first hand. After the attack, he had collapsed to his knees, his white and black bangs impairing his vision. He held his left arm out and stable with his right arm, applying pressure so that the blood wouldn't spew out so quickly. His breaths grew longer and deeper, which mixed themselves with his screams of pain and tears. When he was used to the pain to the point where it became tolerable, he stood up, dropping his arms to his side. He didn't say anything, but rather turned his back to Villa and walked away without acknowledging her. Velin may have beaten him that time, but Cress was positive he wouldn't do it again. Perhaps it was time to try and bring his own ambitions into fruition.

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

"Um... so. Who the hell are you again?" Reid asked rudely, the question directed at Reece. "I know your name now, but just WHO are you? I don't want to bring along random people that could be burdens." Humorously, this was coming from a fifteen year old boy who still had little grasp on reality after all that had occurred lately. "I guess we're heading to Gregar now. Even if we did find Rosaline like this, there is no way we would be able to defeat that thing that took her away in the condition we have now. Sure, we have our faels, but we still know so little about them." Reid proceeded to look at his feet glumly. "But dammit, it's my fault she was taken in the first place. If I hadn't lost it and gotten myself knocked unconscious..." This was barely audiable to anyone but himself and Mistral, who gave him a playful mental 'snap out of it!' kick.

OOC: Sorry the Reid parts are so short. Not much to do with him right now. XD

Shiney
October 16th, 2007, 11:48 AM
OOC: I'll be short too, partially because I'm vomitting up pure acid. x.x

I growled, my hand travelling to the hip-sheathe of my knife, not at all happy about some of the things she had told me. That's when I realised, I hadn't even gotten her name. "Min." "Thanks." I said aloud dryly, moving in towards the others. Instinctively, I selected one boy out of the crowd, a little shorter than me with spiky brown hair. I held out my hand, my right hand, obviously, towards him. "The name's Bobby Roze." I said, my face blank, but my tone distasteful. ot of him, though I couldn't exactly make that clear, but at the situation in general. "And it seems like I'm in on this jolly suicide scheme." I said, before checking my coat, shifting my shoulders to make sure my left arm was covered. After all, you didn't want to make your introduction to people by saying you were crippled. Then they just used you for meatshields. "Though I think I have only the barest udnerstanding of what exactly's going on."

Loki
October 16th, 2007, 02:25 PM
As if Villa had ever trembled more in her lifetime, she shook without restraint now, tears welling up in her eyes as she was engulfed in a wave of utter fear and terror. Though she feared almost all the other Apostles with equal passion, her fear in Velin suddenly increased ten-fold, while her fear of Cress decreased ten-fold. She reached out a shaking hand when Cress walked away without another notion, but though her fear of him had decreased, she had been so utterly frightened by Velin that she couldn't even think of calling out his name or title. And so she stood, before dejectedly dragging her sleeves along the floor, her long fingers and nails nearly touching the floor as she walked with her head bowed but her shoulders tall. It was like this that she walked back to her room, a simple room that was entirely white. Due to Villa's purpose to the apostles, she was permitted no distractions, certainly not in the place where she could think to herself. Thus, it was almost hard to make out where the lines of the furniture met or ended.

Sitting down on the end of her bed in this vast whiteness, Villa frowned, and knew that she had to think. This was her mission, her job, and failure was not well recieved.

'And what's you're name?' The girl with the teal hair asked cheerfully as she looked over the invisible person's application.

The girl nodded, and Villa strained to remember whether the faceless person had said something just then, 'But it sounds cooler when you say it out loud- that way, I won't make a fool of myself and say it wrong, right?'

Why was this little girl being so laid back?

Why shouldn't she be?

She was doing something important, Villa remembered. She remembered wondering why such a young girl was handling such an important matter.

But even this short recollection shut out Villa's lights as she lay sprawled across her bed, unconcious with a gruesome and tortured expression with her hands loosely clutching at the long white strands of hair.

~

"Well," Adela said, slapping Reid on the shoulder, (a little harder then just light jest, but not hard enough to hurt someone who wasn't a total pansy,) "Thanks, it's great to know that we who were awake would've been of no use saving Rosaline, and with your help, it would've been a breeze. Stop acting like a tragic-hero, it's not helping at all. Either way, the creeper said he was an Apostle of Tylonstus, and thus, we can safely assume that Rosaline and the freaky-guy are both in a place that harbors a freakish- excuse me," Adela added at the sight of Aertan's raised eyebrow, "Religious interest. What are we going to find at Beta? Snow? Yeti's?"

Alicel couldn't help but repeat Reid's words however, "Some stranger who could be a burden..." She mumbled as she glared at Aertan who ignored her to the fullest, saying in argument to Adela's headstrong theory, "With the vast amount of credit you Tealian's obviously give us, we've probably hidden those monsters right in the middle of town, so obviously, we don't need to find where they are, what they want, or who they are. As far as I'm concerned, as the preacher for my respective church, I've never heard of Tylonstus having any Apostle's. Certainly not apostle's as ugly as that demon-thing. So I'd imagine that their either, not in Carn, or, well hidden enough so that nobody's ever found them before. Sure thing, let's waltz right into Carn and ask them where their Apostles are." Aertan finished with a flourish of sarcasm, leaning back into his seat.

"I think we should just go, since we're not really accomplishing anything by sitting around here." Alicel snapped with obvious irritation toward the passage of speech between Aertan and Adela.

ooc; Gah, I'm so lost as to what to say. xD; So that's why I ended the post short-up, I didn't want to just babble incessantly. Sorry! *sweat*

Alter Ego
October 18th, 2007, 08:37 AM
"Mama's research." Faewyn replied to Adela's rhetorical question. It just came out spontaneously, but the girl was not about to take it back. This was her homeland they were discussing, and this person was trying to belittle it, "I-I took some of it with me when I...left home." she struggled hard not to let her mind slip into dark thoughts at this point, using Isair's predicament as motivation, "But I know mama kept copies of everything she ever wrote somewhere. If...if we just search around a bit I'm sure we'll find something we can use. She did work with offensive mahstion, and we need to get stronger, right?" she directed the last question to Reid, "Wionus was here specialty, but she did a lot of research on others too. And, well..." she bit her lip, "I'd like to know how that Cress person could use two types of mahstion. The answer's in one of her journals, I just know it is!"

It was then that Reid shifted the subject by mentioning that they didn't need any burdens. Though it seemed to be primarily directed at Reece, a number of others seemed to react, including Alicel and a stranger who had just joined into the conversation, the latter seeming particularly mindful of covering his left arm for some reason.

"Burden?" Reece echoed, his expression hardening slightly at the boy's rude manner, but soon reverting to the usual pleasant one, "No, I understand-" she added, raising a hand to silence Faewyn's objection, "I imagine I would want to know as much if I were in your shoes, but I assure you I'm no burden. I've served in the Tealian military for the last eight years, though seeing as how I've spent the last three years of my career patrolling some forsaken backwater - courtesy of certain officials who shall not be named - I suppose I can't blame you for not knowing. I've got quite a bit of experience in not getting myself or my unit killed, and this weapon isn't just for show either." he nodded towards the glaive strapped across his back, "But if you want proof, feel free to test my skills for yourself." he grinned confidently at Reid.

"I-I can vouch for him, Reid." Faewyn interjected, "Reece is the one who taught me how to use a staff. And, well..." her gaze traveled to the floor, "He's the first friend I ever made, so I was sort of hoping you two would get along. I know-I know that's not a good reason." she added, raising her gaze again, "But it would really mean a lot if-"

"Fay, that's enough." her friend interrupted.

"But-" the girl protested.

"I said that's enough." Reece persisted, "Look, I really appreciate you sticking out for me, Fay, but Reid's right; if my skills aren't enough then I shouldn't come along to burden the group. I want to get accepted on my own merits, you know that, right?"

"I...I know." Faewyn replied, "I'm sorry."

"Don't." Reece objected, "You haven't done anything you should feel sorry for." he turned his attention back to Reid, meeting the younger's gaze calmly, "It's your call, both on who gets to go and where they go." just as he had finished, however, the soldier's pose suddenly jerked in an odd way, his lips forming out words in a far lighter, more feminine tone than before, "If I may interject?" Sieglinde spoke through her host, ignoring his objections, "It would be prudent not to rush to conclusions about the worth of anyone in this room. As descendants of the goddess, our fates are intertwined. Whether we walk together or not will not change our destiny, but a united front is often stronger than a scattered one." a serene and decidedly un-Reece-like smile played on the soldier's lips, "Please do consider this if you truly value what's at stake." with that, the body jerked again, a decidedly disgruntled-looking expression confirming that the original Reece had returned "Sorry about that." he grit out, "But it looks like a certain fael" he received an interlude of meaningful silence from the back of his head at this point, "-got very wordy all of a sudden. Like I said, it's your call."

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As tended to be the case in such situations, Velin betrayed no sign of shock as Kira lunged at him from behind, bombarding him with questions before her more mindful sister managed to drag her down, forcing her to join her in courtesy as she presented an apology. The voices had been enough for identification, as if the very act hadn't been a giveaway. Kira and Kyra - the double trouble twins, as some of the Carn soldiers had dubbed them - if Velin could have been considered to like anyone it would probably have been these two. To an outsider it may have seemed strange, especially considering that Kira had a tendency to get on the nerves of even the saintliest of people, and in all honesty Velin couldn't quite comprehend it either. The best explanation he had was that the girl showed no fear of him - it was not the usual bravado that some put on, the kind which people like Cress thought could somehow hide the revolting stench of terror beneath it, no; Kira seemed genuinely oblivious to the prospect that anything seriously bad could happen to her and strangely enough it made Velin feel obliged to live up to this expectation in his own peculiar way. It was comforting to know that at least one person didn't regard you as a monster. Kyra, on the other hand, was one of the few apostles who actually used that head of theirs as something other than a meat shield. Besides, both had been loyal to him, and Velin rewarded it in his own subtle ways, often letting them off with less in the way of lasting pain than most misbehaving apostles - like now, in choosing to let Kira be pulled back unharmed, when an average person interrupting his meditation would have walked out at least one limb short, provided that they could walk at all. Normally, this kind of mercy would have been the queue for the offending party to make a run for it as soon as possible, but Kyra had probably divined enough of his mood to know that they weren't in the immediate danger zone, and thus proceeded to explain their case instead:

"As you know, we have have been cooped up for weeks now without work, and Azyla isn't the best man to act as an entertainer."

'Try months like me.' Velin's mind jabbed in, 'Because obviously I'm the funnyman who'll turn that frown upside down.'

"We were curious as to if you had any possible work for us."

Velin paused at this, giving the two apostles in front of him an appraising look as he pondered his response, "No further official missions have been assigned at this time." Velin replied in his usual monotone, "However..." he added, weighing his coming suggestion one last time, "If you are truly so bored, I may have a task for you." he paused, "I take it, you know that the good padre-" he always referred to the supervising cleric in this fashion, so there was hardly a risk of misunderstanding, "...has been quite...enthusiastic in his work as of late? As your probably know, he is currently in the process of attempting to prove that we are all vicious, priest-killing abominations created not by the power of Thylonstus but through inhuman mahstion experiments." this was all completely true, of course, at least on Velin's part, but people weren't supposed to know it, "From what I gather, he has even pilfered information from the secret archives to support his case; he wouldn't leave it far from his person, probably concealing it in a file somewhere within his office. The contents of this file, I admit, I'd be quite interested in getting to know. However, the file in question is no doubt highly classified, so it would be best if the good padre wasn't aware of the information passing hands. A simple distraction strategy would no doubt buy one of you the time necessary to find it." he shrugged, "Of course I have no official backing for this assignment, so getting caught would have...unpleasant consequences. As such, I won't hold it against you if you don't accept, in which case this conversation never took place. There is also some risk-free work in keeping an eye on the two failures..." again, the implication of the youngest apostles was not hard to spot, "...but baby-sitting them usually isn't a worthwhile task. That is all I can offer at the moment, so take it as you will." he gave a small, indifferent shrug, "Now that the sacrifice is here and Cress carelessly left her companions alive, I have no doubt that more work will have arrived by the end of the week. If you can wait that long, I'm sure you won't be disappointed. Regardless, I will be here if anything important comes up."

parallelzero
October 18th, 2007, 07:26 PM
"As much as I'd love to fight a charming gent such as yourself," Reid replied to Reece's challenge, his tone clearly mocking the other male's, while at the same time ignoring Adela for her remark, "We really don't have the time right now. If you're so inclined to prove yourself in such a manner, do it on the field. Just don't blame at me if you die." He turned bright red as his voice reached that feminine pitch Mistral had. Obviously, she wanted him to stop. Mistral was going to be a playful nuisance to him. "Sorry, couldn't resist~" She giggled in a much different mood than she had been in earlier, but broad casted this line mentally to the whole group. Reid coughed, his voice clearing back to it's normal tone. "ANYWAYS, I guess if we're planning on exploring Faewyn's theory, we should leave soon. I guess I'll leave everything to you, Faewyn." Reid said, looking at the girl with a glint of respect in his harsh eyes. "I've never been to Gregar myself, too cold. I guess you'll just have to be our guide then, huh? We should probably rest tonight and get prepared. Who knows how many of those apostles are out there? We need to find our friend..."

In the meantime, Mistral had invaded Adela's mind for one soul purpose. "Jeckt, Jeckt~" She called out playfully and randomly. "Are you planning on meeting me at any time, or were you planning on hiding yourself from me? We are to be wed, after all." Of course, since she was TECHNICALLY still Reid, and just projection herself into Adela's head, they could both hear what the two fael would be talking about.

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

As if on queue, a Carn soldier entered the strategy room carrying a paper, which Kyra automatically recognized as one of the papers the military used to assign orders. The man, despite being large, muscular, defined, and chiseled, shook ever so subtly once his eyes met up with the six eyes the twins had possession of. He held the paper out to Velin, and with a voice only a man suffering from fear could manage, explained the details listed on the sheet. "N-new information has arrived from our intelligence division involving the group Cress encountered earlier. They are a-apparently heading for Gregar, and have some sort of strange new power that Cress mentioned upon arriving back here. This group has now been marked a high level threat, and must be eliminated soon. Thus, HQ has decided to give you permission to take yourself and three of your best apostles to "rendezvous" with the group upon their arrival in Gregar. It is expected that they will arrive within two hours from this point in time." The man quickly shuffled out of the room, leaving the two girls to pin all eyes on Velin. Three of those, belonging to Kira, were full of hope, and it looked as if she was giving him puppy dog eyes. The other three eyes, like they normally were, seemed indifferent, although there was still a glint of hope in them.

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

"Get up, girl."

"...Huh... what?" The blue haired girl muttered as she finally came to on the cold, hard floor. She pushed herself up on to her knees, and began to look around. She was in a cell, that much was certain, and a very small cell indeed. The bars that made up the cage were lined with lionus, meaning if she tried to break out with her own mahstion, it would be useless. She jumped a little as a tray containing a meal of bread, chicken, and water flew at her from outside of the cage, directing her attention at the white and black haired monster from which the meal came. "Who are... what are you?"

"That's a little bit rude." Cress replied to Rosaline with little real interest in his voice. While he acted indifferent, this girl could actually be of some use later on. He rose his left arm into his view, a white bandage soiled with blood wrapped around the wound Velin had given him. "My name is Cress, I'm an apostle." The girl replied with a puzzled look on her face, giving Cress no choice but to take the time to explain the situation to her. "Listen, I don't know why they want you so bad, especially since you were born as a sacrifice..." He got up and opened the door, his back turned to the girl. "But don't worry, I won't let them kill you... yet." He slammed the door behind him, leaving Rozaline to cry. She was such a naive girl from the reports he received. Would she really be of any use? Only time would tell.

Alter Ego
October 19th, 2007, 01:10 AM
"If I die, I imagine I won't get the chance to." Reece replied to the younger male's remark, seemingly taking the hostility in good humor, though his grin may well have been fostered by Mistral's little trick, "But as long as it's for a noble cause it's all good. Better to die standing than live on your knees, I say."

Even Faewyn couldn't help a guilty little giggle at the change in Reid's tone, though she soon silenced it so as to not come off as rude. Besides, Reid's next request was serious, and the girl certainly didn't fail to spot the sentiment behind it. It was obviously taking a great deal of trust on Reid's part to give such a big role to someone else in a matter that was so important to him, and trust wasn't something the boy seemed to fond of giving, "Leave it to me." Faewyn replied, nodding confidently, "After all...I'm getting quite used to being a guide. Oh, and you might want to pack something warm." she addressed the last remark to the group in general, "The country is...pretty high up in the air, even by our standards, so it might get a little chilly. And the maps!" she added spontaneously, tilting her head, "It's preparing time now, right? I think I've got some maps and stuff here, but I need some time to find them."

"Guess I'll hit the practice field in the meantime, then." Reece remarked, "That's my kind of preparation. If you need me, you know where to find me." he waved a farewell to the group before proceeding to wander down the hall, glaive in tow.

"I guess I'll go search through my notes." Faewyn announced, "Let's meet up here tomorrow morning, okay?" with that and a quick wave of farewell, she darted off in her own direction. This was an important mission, after all, and every detail had to be considered.

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Despite the rather...unexpected contents of the newly arrived order, Velin didn't seem to display the least bit of interest in the messenger's news, his light blue eyes merely staring indifferently at the man, although he eventually reached out his hand in a slightly reluctant manner and accepted the piece of paper. This man reeked of fear, and it was taking some self-restraint from the first apostle's part not to lunge at his throat for it. Of all human emotions, fear was the one he disliked the most.

"Try a 's-s-sir' or two next time." he remarked impassively as the messenger made a hasty departure, duly reading through the document, as if he didn't notice the three puppy-dog eyes staring him down oh-so-endearingly. This was an unexpected turn of events; oh, he had seen a mission coming, but one requesting not only himself but also his best apostles? Velin's eyes narrowed ever so slightly, whatever these strangers had done they certainly seemed to have the high and mighty priests of Thylonstus shaking in their little ceremonial robes...yes, this was worth investigating. Besides, an order was an order.

"If I said 'no'..." the first apostle began, his eyes still focused on the paper, "...would I ever get to hear the end of it? No, don't answer that." he added, a tiny hint of teal in his hair betraying light amusement as he slowly rose to his feet, brushing off the dirt from his clothes and meeting his juniors' expectant gazes, "Third apostle Kira Zeybal, fourth apostle Kyra Zeybal, you are hereby officially assigned to work with me on this mission. Carry out your orders swiftly and efficiently and there shall be no complications. Departure will occur as soon as the team has been assembled." it was his standard speech upon assigning a mission, so every apostle save Villa already knew it by heart, but Velin supposed that some conventions had to be followed, "Has the fifth returned yet?" he inquired, pausing by the exit of the strategy room, "The failures are more trouble than they're worth, and I dislike the idea of leaving them and the sacrifice here unsupervised."

Loki
October 19th, 2007, 03:29 PM
Jeckt peered out from behind the tallest, thickest tree, its tall strong branches blocking out the moon that was shining eternally upon the realm he called home. With a serene smile, Jeckt moved out of the shadows and tilted his head forward, “My apologies for not coming to greet you earlier, Mistral, but I’ve a certain tendency to feel unwelcome when I arrive uninvited. It’s a pleasure to meet you.” Jeckt said, straightening as he held out his hand with his pale palm basking in the glow of the moonlight, “Before any talk of weddings should commence, there is something important that both me and Adela have yet to share with you or your reila, Reid. It is a very regretful prospect that we have held this a secret from the two of you for such a long time, but the time never seemed quite right.”

When Jeckt mentioned the mahstion gun, Adela sat down on one of the chairs and supported her chin on the heel of her right hand, staring instinctively down at her feet like she always did when she felt like she’d lied or deceived someone. She was staring determinedly anywhere but the cream colored bag that was now sitting between herself and the back of the white chair. In her mind, this focus and concentration caused the moon to disappear, the darkness enveloping the realm as the pinpricks of stars became the only light offered.

“Lights.” Jeckt said, only able to see the faintest outline of Mistral now as he peered up at where the moon once shone brightly. As he uttered the word, a number of stars seemed to suck themselves into his palm as they gathered into one little orb of light that soon scattered to position themselves about the mother tree of the forest, leaving the area where Mistral and Jeckt stood adequately light.

“In any sense, it would be best if this secret was revealed and returned to its original owner before the departure for Gregar, and so I must implore that you meet Adela and myself inside the eighteenth control room. It was set out of commission just after Adela entered the Tealian Forces, and there should be no one to disturb us there.” Jeckt said smiling as Adela stood again, irritated.

“Fine.” She spat in response to the people who had contradicted her and otherwise ignored her, “Gregar right? I’m going to go get ready.” Storming out the door, she closed the door with a slight edge, more force then she’d intended causing most of the healers in the hallway to jump a little. Adela took a quick glance and didn’t see the familiar Shiraume anywhere in sight, thus turning and heading straight for the Eighteenth Control Room, where she, Kallen, and Shiraume spent most of their free time gossiping or conversing about recent events. Kallen, however, was currently swamped, and Shiraume MIA.

The mahstion gun was starting to feel like a heavy lead weight.

~

“It’ll be too cold in Gregar to wear this.” Alicel said, “So I’m going to go fishing for a pair of wool tights and a winter jacket, and-“

“I think I should get rid of this tattoo.” Aertan interrupted, holding his limp left hand up to the light to examine the full extent of the damage, the black glove that normally concealed the disfigured hand from view grasped lightly in his right hand, “Or maybe the whole hand in general. It doesn’t really work all that well anymore anyway.”

Alicel stared at the mangled hand, where the rose tattoo still glowed every other second like an eerie pulse. Though the skin around it was charred and blistered, the tattoo was still as it was the last time she’d seen it, when it sat upon smooth and ivory skin, dormant. She blinked when Geote moved forward to grasp Aertan’s hand and he seemed to move away. A trick of the eye? Regardless. If Alicel was going to get a pair of stockings and jacket that matched in some possible way to her outfit, she’d better get moving soon. She left the room, having already announced her destination and goal.

“Give it here…” Came a hoarse hiss of a voice, a deep rumble and Geote beckoned for the hand with his fingers as the fanged mouth upon his palm spoke the words with some difficulty.

Aertan stared with wary eye before also exiting the room without a word to Geote.

~

“So what do you think about it?”

“I was unable to figure out how it works.” Came the calm reply, “I’m unaware as to even what century it comes from. Is it new, is it old? I cannot deduct this information, nor can I comprehend where this young man may have even gotten hold of this device.”

Standing amongst the wooden crates that now occupied but a small walkway in the middle of the small room of the eighteenth control room, Adela sighed and stared at the flickering screens that produced a small bit of light, enough to walk through by.

Fingering the cold of the gun swathed in her red bandanna, Adela shut the door that had hung slightly open, and contemplated her situation.

Engaged to someone she'd never known all that well, and never liked because of his connections with Commander Milo.

She'd always treated him like a son anyway. Adela frowned and mumbled to herself, "So this is her ploy..."

parallelzero
October 21st, 2007, 02:07 PM
"The fifth apostle, Arturo Plasterez, is currently on a reconnaissance mission. I can only lead myself to conclude that he is where this information arrived to us from." Kyra replied to Velin's question as she watched her sister in the corner of her eye. Kira was getting worked up at the thought of leaving the filthy place, and Kyra did not want the twin to do something that would get them off the mission. "Knowing Arturo's nature, it is most likely safe to assume that he is including himself into these numbers, meaning we only need who we have in this room. We'll meet him later. In regards to the prisoner, has the Carn military not charged Cress with the task of watching her? The boy is a little defiant, but I doubt he would try anything in our absence, if that's what you're worried about. Besides, Azyla can watch him if you are that concerned." Her reasoning finished, she stopped talking, her sister following suite just in case. All that was left was to wait for their next orders.

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

Reid had difficulty multitasking mentally. Between listening to Faewyn, and the conversation between Mistral and Jeckt, he kept getting lost and mixed up. When Faewyn concluded with her suggestions and suggested time of departure, all Reid could manage was a nod, distracted by his mental, female companion and her antics. Reid was intrigued though, what could Adela possibly have been keeping from him? He had a vague idea. It was never found at the scene of the crime. He mentally kicked himself. Thinking of it made him feel angry, very angry for some reason, and Mistral returned to her realm in Reid's mind upon sensing it. Mistral knew it, but Reid did not: chances were being reminded of his fight with Rod would strongly affect his negafael's presence, which would not be a good thing in the long run. After all was settled, and Adela ran off, Reid called after her, "Er... OKAY! SEE YOU THERE!?"

He departed soon after, walking through the white halls that now permitted a lovely yet mystifying orange glow from the setting sun outside. He made a quick pit stop by the room now harboring the unconscious Commander Milo, but the doctor turned him away claiming she needed more rest. Having nothing else to do aside from leaving to go to his Tealian military sponsored apartment and rest, Reid headed for the eighteenth control room, getting somewhat lost along the way. When he eventually found it, he pushed open the door, only to find himself in a room with very little light. "Erm... hello?"

"Jeckt~" Mistral called mentally.

Loki
October 21st, 2007, 03:11 PM
"Hey!" Adela gave Reid a bubbly grin from one of the crates piled near the ceiling, leaving just enough room for her to be able to sit up straight, "I thought you might've come faster then you did. I've been so serious all these past few weeks, my face almost hurts from frowning so much." Laughing, Adela hopped down and rummaged through her bag, her smile dissolving in place of a frown as she searched. Pulling out the blood caked bandanna that covered part of the mahstion gun, she grasped it tightly and glanced at Reid.

"I'm sorry I didn't give it back to you earlier. It was Rod's, right? The weapon that made that hole in your leg?" Adela said pulling the bandanna off and discarding it. In the gleam of the flickering screens, the device in Adela's hands glinted with a devious shine, and she continued, looking to her side rather then toward the gun and Reid, "I'm going to give it back to you, and I don't really care what you do with it afterwards."

Holding the mahstion gun out she added, "And I'm not going to tell my mother 'no' for real. I can't do that. I don't know you at all, but if you don't want to marry me, of if you, 'want to make your own choices' like the Princess was shouting about before she was kidnapped, then do it. I won't feel bad, if that's what's stopping you. But if you decide to marry me, then I have one thing to say to you."

Jeckt smiled and peered into a small crystal orb, responding to Mistral's call many many sentences too late, with a calm smile upon his face, "Yes, Mistral?"

"You're not allowed to die."

~

"O-Oi!" A healer dressed in a white button up coat and pressed pants stammered, as a trio of them watched with wide eyes.

"Shut up." Aertan snapped, "Come back when it's done if you can't watch. I'll call you or something."

The three scrambled out of the room as Aertan examined the small scalpel in his hand, mumbling to himself, "This'll hurt."

Geote held up a large butcher's knife and Haeon't slapped him and poked his eye with her sharp claw in annoyance.

"No Haeon't, that's a good idea." Aertan said, reaching for the knife that had clattered away when Haeon't slapped Geote, "It'll probably hurt less since it'll be one movement, you know? Geote, you want to do it? Just from the wrist down."

Geote snatched up the butcher's knife without hesitation and aimed carefully, swinging it about as Aertan diverted his gaze and Haeon't switched her mouth to her eye.

And blood puddled on the floor as a hand and a pulsating rose tattoo hit the blood with a sickening splash and thud.

Alter Ego
October 24th, 2007, 07:53 AM
As usual, Velin heard out his fellow apostle's reasoning to the end before making any kind of response.

"If, say a week ago, I had asked you whether or not Cress could be scared off by a handful of children in Tealian uniforms, would you have replied 'yes'?" he inquired rhetorically, "If there's one thing I've learned about Cress Alberto Thylonstus it is that he can not be counted on for anything." the first apostle shook his head in distaste, "But...no matter. I suppose we can spare Ayzla to babysit the both of them." in all honesty, he would have preferred the second over the fifth; Plasterez had a bothersome tendency to simply come and go on his own accord which had never sat well with him, still...he was certainly preferable to either of the two at the bottom.

"Very well, then." he said at last, "We leave forthwith. If you need any belongings, gather them immediately then meet me up at the roof. We'll be flying by natural wind so as to not announce our presence to the prey." he stretched out his wings a bit, feeling the urge of the muscles to finally get to work again. It had been too long since the last mission...far too long, really. It was about time to remind the world why you didn't anger the first apostle...

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"Your movements are too wide."

Reece merely grunted in response, twirling around on the spot and bringing the glaive around in a tighter arc as he slashed for another training dummy, the sharp metal head slicing in through its right elbow and vertically down to the hip, cleaving it in two. He had thought that he knew how frustrating a training session could be, but when his newly acquired fael companion had started finding little faults in everything he did, right down to the way he held his weapon, the soldier had come to appreciate just how soft and merciful his old drill sergeants had been. Reece grimaced; what the hell had he been thinking asking Sieglinde to help him with his technique?

"Balance." Sieglinde's voice scolded, "You extend too far forward when you attack; a skilled opponent could easily knock you off your feet."

"Gee, thanks for the encouragement." the soldier remarked sarcastically, making a quarter turn and slashing up a third training dummy's stomach, stuffing material leaking out onto the ground as he turned to face the one remaining dummy, assuming an offensive stance.

"Less comments, more focus." the fael retorted calmly, "You're a big boy now, so start acting like one and relax your grip - the last thing you want to do is drop your weapon in the middle of a battle."

"Don't know what I would do without you..." the soldier huffed, doing his best to relieve the tension in his arm.

Reece had a vague impression that somewhere in the depths of his mind, that tiny smile was spreading on Sieglinde's face, "I'm afraid to find out." she replied, "Tighter grip. I said relax; not slouch. We're going to keep going at this until you get it right."

Oh yes, this was going to be one long training session...

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"Ah-hah! Found it!"

Faewyn lunged up from her chair, triumphantly holding up the journal between her fingers, even as the small mountain of paper scattered across the desk in her room flew in all directions, "They're all here, every last map I drew." she smiled fondly at the faded pages of the journal, especially the colorful, wobbly-lined map titled 'Our House', "Thanks Isair, I had no idea that you could scroll through notes like that."

"There's no need to thank me, Faewyn." the fael replied amiably, "Your gain is mine, after all."

"Oh, right..." the girl replied, "Well, I'm grateful anyway."

For a moment, she had the feeling that Isair would object to her illogical reasoning, but instead a small burst of polite laughter filled her head, "In that case you are quite welcome, Faewyn." the fael said, "Is there anything else I may assist you with?"

"Let's see..." the girl replied, turning to consult her most recent notebook, specifically the checklist scribed onto the first page, duly jotting down a small mark beside 'Maps', "Alright, we still need...medical supplies." her expression turned more serious, "We don't have Rosaline with us, so we have to be prepared to heal any wounds we might get."

"A good call." Isaire concurred, "I believe the medical ward was down the hallway over there?"

Faewyn nodded, quickly swinging her messenger bag over her shoulder while clasping the notebook in her right hand as she strode out of the room. And sure enough, it didn't take long for her to notice one of the local medics, crouching outside of the room.

"Excuse me!" the girl called, "I would like to request some medical supplies for a special mission in-"

"S-supplies?" the doctor looked like he had seen a ghost, cold sweat running down his brow in streams as he stared at Faewyn, "No, you know what-go ahead! It's completely against protocol, but go ahead! You dot people are all insane; take what you need! Self-amputate as many limbs as you damn well please! Just see if I care! I should have taken that damn lawyer education!" he threw his arms up in frustration, stomping down the hallway without giving Faewyn any chance for further inquiry.

"Self-amputation?" the girl echoed quizzically, "Oh come on, who would possibly want to-"

It was then that the soft but unmistakable thud of a severed hand striking the floor carried out through the door, though to Faewyn this was of course little more than an undetermined noise. She didn't like the sound of it, though.

"Faewyn...are you sure of this?" Isaire inquired as the girl reached a shaky hand towards the door handle, "You may not like what you find on the other side."

'I know.' the girl replied, gathering her composure for a moment before pressing down the handle and throwing the door wide open.

Even though part of her mind had known that only one of the so-called 'dot people' could be both reckless and composed enough to amputate their own limb, it didn't make the sight of Aertan's bloodied stump of a hand any more pleasant, and Faewyn couldn't help clasping her mouth with her free hand. She soon composed herself again, though.

"Aertan..." she began hesitantly, "Do you need a hand?" she paused, realizing what she had just said and quickly pressing on, "Sorry, that was a bad choice of words on my part. I-what I meant to say was: do you need some help with that? Taking care of your arm, I mean." she finished to forestall the possibility of the priest offering her that bloodied hatchet one of his ghoulish companions was currently holding onto.

parallelzero
October 25th, 2007, 04:22 PM
"But..." Kyra held her tongue. She new better than to contradict Velin's words, even if they were purely accusatory. If it had come to the point where four apostles had to deal with this 'handful of children', Cress was most likely justified when he made the decision to flee. "Never mind, I apologize." She bowed apologetically, before turning her back to the man and beckoning for her sister to follow her out the door. Things are going to become difficult around here soon. Common sense would suggest retreating, but Kira would never go with me, and she can sense my presence as I can sense hers, which would ensure my recapture and discipline. It seems conclusive that I have no choice but to remain here and hope nothing too terrible occurs... She thought to herself as she exited the door, taking one last glance back at the man beyond the darkness of the room.

-

"Adela... this is..." Reid's voice quivered as he firmly took the weapon from the girl's hands. He had originally be thrown off by Adela's cheery attitude towards him, but he could see that it had been a guise to mask how she was really feeling about the whole ordeal. He held it out in a manner that suggested he was going to fire it, but didn't. "This is how he held it before he shot me. Before I... killed him." He suddenly aimed the gun at Adela's head, his eyes glazed in a dark green colour.

Inside the realm of his mind, a battle was ensuing. There was Mistral, and some other girl who appeared similarly to Mistral. Her shade of green was darker, her eyes blood red, and dressed in dark green armor that was reminiscent of a samurai, with a long thin sword appearing to be of a similar origin. "Don't interfere, weakling. I'm taking control now, thanks to Reid's instability in regards to that strange, delectable weapon." She licked her lips as she gazed upon Mistral, who was already on her knees from taking a sword blow to the stomach, her blood puddling up on the ground below her. Her breaths grew thicker, longer, as she attempted to create a plan of action. If only Maelstrom hadn't sneaked up on her and dealt a blow before she had a chance to notice her presence. Though this was a negafael she was talking about. It wouldn't play fair. "What's the matter? You understand what will happen if I destroy you, right? You'll be locked in the back of Reid's mind just as I was, unable to do nothing but watch as we destroy everyone and everything." Luckily for Mistral, this girl talked too much.

Feeding off of Reid's energy, Mistral got to her feet and made a mad dash towards the dark side, wionus forming around her fist, until it began to glow brightly. Thanks to Reid's energy, she was capable of moving fast enough that Maelstrom was incapable of dodging. She threw her fist up in an uppercut manner, and the wionus exploded upon impact, engulfing both girls. As the smoke cleared, Maelstrom was nowhere to be found. Only Mistral, falling onto her back onto the ground, burns coating her body in addition to the large sword wound horizontally through her stomach, and another up her right arm.

At the same time of Mistral's collapse, Reid did the same. His form quickly changed so that Mistral was the predominant material body, although her wounds were still present in this form. She managed to murmur a meek whisper of a "help..." before the usual glow around her body faded and her the glint in her eyes disappeared suggesting she had lost consciousness. "ADELA." Reid contacting the girl from within his own mind. "She needs treatment NOW! She told me that she needs another fael to transfer some of their energy to her to help heal her wounds, but even after that she'll require a full night of rest to fully recover. I've let her my material form until then, please have Jeckt help her!" Of course, Adela would most likely be thoroughly confused as to what was going on.

-

Cress gazed into the darkness that was holding cell number 33. He had been charged with taking care of this prisoner as well, and loathed it greatly. She always insisted in talking with him about the strangest things. His likes, dislikes, his life in general. He had no choice but to abide, however, he had been charged with giving this girl whatever she wanted, within reason. "Yo, I'm here." He said in an uncaring manner towards the shaded figure. Despite what he liked to think, he kind of had a soft spot for her. All he received from the darkness was a loud cough. "You sick?" Cress sighed as he planted his hand on his head. "I'll have to go get medicine then..." As he turned to walk out the door, a voice beckoned him to stop.

"Wait, I'll be fine. I'm more concerned about you, anyways." The voice was alluring, noble, and hinted that it usually possessed some strength, though it had worn weak and dull after the time she had spent locked up.

"Me?" Cress raised a brow as he tapped his right index finger on his chin. "Stop being illogical. I captured you, why would you of all people worry about ME?"

"You have no memory, do you? You're in much pain, both mentally and physically. Perhaps if you-"

"SHUT UP. You don't know me, so stop talking like you do." He silenced her, before turning his back to her, a fresh grin appearing on his face once more. "Say, how would you like to go see your sister?"

OOC: Dun dun dun.

Loki
October 25th, 2007, 05:55 PM
Aertan could only manage a small choke of a laugh at Faewyn's words while he tried his hardest not to grasp his arm in writhing pain. He brushed his sleeve across his eyes just in case, (but he wasn't going to cry over something pansy like this, of course,) and swallowed a lump in his throat. A priest, but as one could see from his rather pathetic muscular build, Aertan was certainly not cut out for dealing with pain like a man. Haeon't lead Faewyn into the room as she explained the situation, while Geote swung the door shut behind Faewyn, but not before wrenching one of the two remaining shaking healers into the room by the collar.

"You see," Haeon't said in the raspy hiss that belonged to the hand she was embodied by, rather then her normally obnoxious and commanding voice, "The hand that was cut off had the tattoo on it, and it's quite a dangerous procedure to remove the tattoo but keep the hand. Master decided it was best to be rid of the thing entirely, as, after all, it was already burned and disfigured to the point where it was nearly useless, and it would simply be a nuiscance later on."

"And he's got an extra pair of hands anyway, right?" Geote cackled, referring to himself and Haeon’t while picking up the tattooed hand and devouring it in one gobble.

"Thanks for that." Aertan choked out, turning a slight shade of green at the sight of Geote swallowing his hand. He would've liked to say more to the arrogant hand, but he was sure that if he said anything more, he'd definitely throw up.

"You there." Geote spun around to face the healer who seemed to lose all and any courage at the sight of the bloody fangs and mouth that spat words at him, "Heal it."

"Before it gets infected." Haeon't added in explanation, before picking up a roll of white bandages and ointment that had already been prepped beside the tray Aertan's now stump of an arm rested upon, "If you'd like to help, you can bandage it up after he's done healing. After all, we can't heal it all at once, that’s just not something you can do, so it'll have to heal manually, says Master Aertan." She placed the bottle and bandages in Faewyn's hands before floating back to her place next to the arm, switching her mouth to her eye.

Aertan ran a hand through his white and red hair as the healer set an orb of Lionus around the bleeding arm, and Geote cleaned up the blood on the floor by sucking it up like a vacuum. As the Lionus stopped most of the bleeding and numbed the pain, Aertan let out a shaky breath before turning to Faewyn with a somewhat irritated yet intrigued expression, "What're you doing here anyway??"

~

Adela’s first reaction to when he aimed it at her in demonstration was to take a wary step back. And what a right move that was. She blinked when his eyes glazed over and her eyes darted from the door back to Reid’s face. She could think only of getting out of the room where Reid pointed that device point-blank at her, the device that had cleanly shot through his bones as if they were jelly. And the thought of defending herself or attacking back hardly seemed like an option to her. The idea of being his fiancé had already sunk in.

“R-“ Just as Adela started to say his name in a trembling voice, he collapsed, and the device clattered to the floor. Adela’s first instinct was to fall to her hands and knees, and push the gun away, letting it skid across the floor before turning back to look at Reid who had promptly changed from him to Mistral. Adela couldn’t hear Mistral’s murmur, but Jeckt did, and inside the realm of Adela’s mind, Jeckt frowned.

With this tiny movement, the crystal ball in Jeckt’s hands shattered into pieces, like glass, and Adela’s eyes turned a very bright shade of yellow, and the tips of her hair that normally flipped upwards began to curl in as they started to dye themselves black, the color seeping up her teal locks like a poison.

“I can’t say I’m particularly fond of this outfit…” Jeckt joked as he turned Mistral onto her back and brushed her hair away from her forehead. It was quite obvious that there wasn’t even the slightest trace of mirth on his frown and serious face. He touched the tips of his index finger and middle finger to Mistral’s forehead and a black goo began to ooze from his fingers like black honey, his hand dissolving away as the goo made it’s way from Jeckt’s hand into Mistral’s forehead, the wounds along her body beginning to close themselves and the burn receeding.

“Reid,” Adela called back, “What’s going on?!”

When Jeckt’s entire hand had dissolved away, he stood up, taking Adela’s body with him, and grimaced as he squeezed his wrist and the same goo came bubbling up to form a new hand. Looking down, Jeckt examined the blackening cuts and the burn that was now only a patch of angry red skin.

“That should do fine. The blackness will fade once my hand has finished doing it’s job.” Jeckt shrugged, smiling as Adela stumbled back to her hands and knee’s in surprise at being put back in control. Picking up the crystal ball with his right hand, the glass having pulled itself back together so one couldn’t even tell it’d been broken. Jeckt smiled pleasantly and said, “If Mistral needs more help, tell her that she’s free to call for me. But she should be well enough to be able to stay in Reid’s mind now, as I quite dislike being in that dress of yours.”

Adela noticed first that Jeckt’s entire left arm was gone, and she examined her own right hand before glancing at the gun.

“It’s best if neither you nor Reid touch that at the moment.” Jeckt intervened as Adela reached out to pick it up, “I’m missing a chunk of my power and that device doesn’t seem to favor plufael’s over negafael’s. It wouldn’t be surprising if the same happened to me as did to Mistral if you touch it… Although…” Jeckt glanced at the trunk of the largest tree with a smirk curling upon his lips as he gazed at a heavily chained up boy with a passive look upon his tanned face and yellow eyes, orange strands of hair hanging in his eyes just as Jeckt’s black fringe hid his own eyes, “I don’t think Xaviae is going to escape anytime soon.”

Alter Ego
October 26th, 2007, 06:10 AM
"You...can talk?"

Faewyn couldn't help the question as one of Aertan's ghoulish hands addressed her, but as it continued by ushering her inside and explaining the situation, she kept quiet so as to not miss out on anything important.

"These are his faels, I believe." Isair explained.

'Really?' Faewyn shot back, having forgotten about the little 'mental link' bit Mistral had explained about, 'But I thought faels just lived in your head? Why are they...you know, growing out of his wings?'

"That I don't know." the fael conceded, "It may be that the faels of your friend here are simply more strong willed than most, or perhaps this is a reaction to the mark of Thylonstus." he gave the mental equivalent of a shrug, "Of course this is all speculation...probably best left for another time."

'Right.' Faewyn replied, placing the checklist and bag at a nearby table before accepting the objects Haeon’t offered her, carefully measuring out a length of bandage and soaking it in the ointment. The healer's mahstion may have healed the worst of the gruesome wound, but it was probably best not to touch it any more than absolutely necessary. Aertan was taking it all surprisingly calmly, but odds are that it was just shock. If this was the case, however, the priest certainly wasn't showing it, seizing on the relief granted by the healer's efforts to ask what Faewyn was doing in the room in the first place.

"I just came to get some supplies for the mission." the girl replied truthfully, grasping Aertan's arm a fair bit above the wound and starting to wrap the bandages around it. Normally, she would have been a bit more hesitant about touching Aertan like that, but this situation was different; he wasn't the creepy hunter person right now, he was just someone in pain, "I mean, we don't have any Lionus users with us so, when-" she paused, quickly correcting herself "-if someone gets hurt, I want to be prepared. I don't want anyone to suffer..." she sighed, wrapping an additional layer of bandage around the stump that used to be the former priest's hand, just to make sure that it held, a distinct undertone of sadness in her usual cheerful voice, "...there's been more than enough of that already." for a few moments, an awkward silence hung in the air as she finished her work, but eventually Faewyn broke it.

"There, it's not too tight is it?" she inquired, "Oh, and Aertan..." the girl gathered her courage, looking the person she had hated so strongly mere weeks ago straight in the eye, "I know that it hurts, your faels know that it hurts, there's no-one else around and none of us are telling on you, so you really don't have to hide it. If that wound starts acting up, let me know right away, okay? You don't have to deal with everything on your own."

Her little speech thus finished, Faewyn took a deep breath, breaking the eye contact and placing bandage, scissors, and ointment aside before starting to rummage around the various cupboards in search of supplies.


OOC: Oh my, looks like I have no need to go multi-perspective with this one. Will wonders never cease? xD

Loki
October 26th, 2007, 02:31 PM
Normally, Aertan would’ve adamantly protested to letting anyone touch him, certainly when he was still letting the fact that he would never be able to use his non-existent left hand ever again sink in. As such, he simply held his arm out in a sort of haughty grudge-like way as Faewyn bandaged it up. While he silently brooded over the turn of events that put him here in the first place, Haeon’t hovered over the bandaged wound with great interest, but not before saying indignantly, “Of course I can talk! You think I can even see with that ridiculous tattoo on me? If they brand that thing on me, then they’ve branded it on my real body too you know! Tylonstus! Feh!”

Aertan instinctively looked to where his left hand had once been; expecting the burning sensation that usually overcame him whenever these discussions were taking place. But instead all he saw was the bandages and felt little more then the reduced throbbing pain of no longer having an arm there. The sharp sting had been ebbed away thanks to the Lionus, but the original burning and pain from the loss of his hand had felt somewhat similar to the tattoo when it was at its worst. He resisted the urge to smile at the difference in his freedom now that he was without either the burden of Carn, or the evidence of his family heritage. Aertan listened politely to Faewyn’s words, inquiring about the bandages and the pain.

“The bandages are fine. And it didn’t hurt too terribly. I’m not going to cry for you if I’ve already stopped myself.” Aertan shrugged, “I’m decent enough to be a wuss on my own time.”

He paused and thought about what Faewyn had said earlier.

“Are you talking about Rosaline, Alicel, and Princess Juliet?” Aertan asked, blinking as he stared down at his stump of an arm, “Suffering is inevitable, if you don’t mind me saying. You shouldn’t bring it on yourself to stop others from suffering when you’re going through just as much yourself.”

He stared at the door, where Geote had roughly tossed the healer out when Faewyn had finished bandaging Aertan’s arm, “You’re looking for your parents, aren’t you?”

Closing his eyes in thought he sighed, “I forgot to ask about it, and it didn’t seem like a pressing issue when I went back to Carn after Haeon’t was injured that one time. I wasn’t lying, in that cell when I told you I didn’t know anything. But, this is just something I thought of after that monster showed up. You said earlier that they were snooping about stuff Carn didn’t want known. There’s this freaky priestess at my church, and she’s obsessed with Tylonstus. Can’t get her mind off of it.”

“When I was younger, she told me that the worst criminal’s are judged by Tylonstus. I thought it was just to scare me into not doing bad things, but I was thinking about it before I cut off my hand… That weird monster thing that took Rosaline away. He said he was a representative of Tylonstus, didn’t he? He probably knows all about it. You should ask him, when we find Rosaline.”

~ + ~

"You seem to have forgotten that Aertan was a Svartel."

"I didn't forget. I just don't think I should gawk at him every passing minute and demand answers from him about something that shouldn't include everyone else. They don't know I'm not a Florinen, remember? I'll ask him about it some other time." Alicel thought as she wandered through the halls, having successfully procured a white double-breasted coat lined with matching white fur lining the rim and inside, "Besides, it doesn't matter anymore. Rosaline is more important, isn't she? I'm looking for Rosaline and he's looking for Juliet. We should make sure they're not sacrificed before-..."

"What? What's going on?"

"This whole thing. Aertan was only coming with us before so he could save Juliet right? But before that, he was fighting to capture Rosaline to save Juliet. His ultimate goal is to save Juliet."

"I thought we'd already clarified that."

"We did. But think about it. Aertan's goal has already been fulfilled." Alicel sank into a chair, "Rosaline was captured and brought back to Carn. So... why is he still hanging around?"

"Well duh, [/i]Juliet is still missing dumb-butt." Kranius reasoned with a dry voice.

Alicel let out a breath, “I suppose.”

~ + ~

“Ouch.” Villa said in a harsh voice as she opened her eyes in one swift movement, “My head hurts.”

Sitting up she grabbed a fistful of white linen sheets and wrenched them off the bed she’d been laying upon just earlier. As the white fabric fluttered silently to the floor, nearly invisible against the white floors and walls had it not been for the light, Villa blinked.

“Oh.” She said in a hurt tone as she hurried over to pick it up, “I’m sorry.” She said to nobody in particular, simply feeling the need to apologize. Staring at the white sheets in her hands she frowned slightly before taking a deep breath. Walking over to the white desk while letting the sheets slowly trail out of her loosened grasp, she stared at the blank white paper already prepared on the table and picked up the black pen, examining it silently before sitting down to write her report, brushing her sleeves back to reveal long fingers and nails. The way Villa wrote was certainly a sight, using only the tips of her nails to drag the pen back and forth in neat script. And this particular report caused her to pace back and forth as she tried to get rid of the nagging migrane that kept coming back after every other paragraph she’d written.

“…ADELA!” Villa shrieked, remembering the little girl’s name.

parallelzero
October 27th, 2007, 11:00 AM
OOC: After you two get one more post in after this, I'm going to time skip to the next morning. Sorry it's so short, I have to make haste.

Reid struggled to get up after bringing Mistral back into his mind, his breathing obviously heavier than normal. Apparently is anything happened to Mistral, he received some degree of her burden himself. He safely assumed it worked in reverse as well. He staggered to the room's exit, glancing back at Adela one last time. "Don't worry, I won't die. When I decide on something, I'll see it through to the end. While I can't be certain what lies ahead, I'll see through whatever you choose." That was the best response he could give to accepting the marriage for now. It was true, the future is full of surprises, no single person can identify what is to occur next, at least not in detail. Anything could occur. And with that, he left towards his apartment down the street from the infirmary.

He arrived at apartment number 343, on the third floor, and made haste to pack for the next day, before crashing back onto his bed. As he stared up at the ceiling, he couldn't help but reflect upon everything that had happened during the day. Despite the face he had put on during the day, he was torn up inside, but he wouldn't allow anyone else to know that. Rosaline's kidnapping, Milo's injury, the fact that he almost killed Adela, and then Mistral's injury. In the end, he began to cry before falling asleep.

The night came and went, and Reid was greeted at a very early hour by the sound of thunder and lightning outside. He stirred aimlessly for a few minutes, before eventually removing himself from his soft and warm slice of heaven that was his bed. He wearily made his way into the small bathroom provided, and flicked on the light, which blinded him temporarily. He almost had a heart attack when his vision cleared, and he found himself looking at Mistral in the mirror, which just turned out to be him in her form again. "...What are you doing?" He sighed aloud in Mistral's voice as he pulled her bangs out of his eyes, before quickly losing control as the arms moved on their own to lift up their white bed shirt to reveal their feminine stomach. Where there was once a large sword wound, was now perfectly smooth and untainted skin, as Mistral demonstrated by making the hands rub the stomach, before Reid finally kicked her and her form back into his head. "Would you stop doing that! You could have showed me that inside my head you know!" He scolded her, but only received a giggle in return. He proceeded with getting ready, showering, brushing his teeth, dressing into his outfit from the day before (he intended to change into something warmer during the flight), and packing the last few items into his bag. When he went to leave his key with the front desk, the manager delivered him a message. The night before, Reid had requested the staff book a flight to Beta, and they had delivered. The manager had informed him of this, and claimed he had sent out several other staff to notify his companions. They were to meet at the eastern docks of Meredy in half an hour.

Reid arrived there about ten minutes early, the rain still pouring down accompanied by thunder and lightning. He walked along the dock and glanced down towards the ground very far below that was inhabited by the wingless, before glancing at the ship that was to take them to their destination. Flying ships were a real piece of work. Completely run by wionus, one ship could carry a maximum of 80 passengers with the use of only two wionus users. Reid sat on the dock's end as he waited for the others.

Loki
October 28th, 2007, 06:26 PM
ooc; Hm, I guess I'll just... go, since I won't have much time tomorrow. *I don't think I will, anyway...*

ic; "Thank you!" Alicel said cheerfully as the mail man took her letter in hand and flew off, with his mail bag secured to his side and his over-grown pidgeon wings beating the air for lift-off. She had taken the last few minutes of the day to go shopping with Adela, who had insisted on her coming with her. She hadn't been able to find any woolen stockings in the Base anyway, so Alicel didn't protest. Not like she got the chance to anyway. Deciding that she would definitely find a way to get some sort of income eventually, Alicel sighed and picked up the drawstring bag that held her coat, stockings, gloves, and other things she thought she might need in Gregar, before looking up at the dreary sky. What a depressing send-off. Though their mission wasn't exactly a positive one, anyway.

"BIMBO!!"

Alicel stiffened and frowned at this nickname Adela had officially assigned her. She really wished the little girl wouldn't walk around shouting it.

"Are you ready to go?" Adela grinned as she splashed through the rain puddles, holding an entirely black parasol, while defending her new white and green polka dotted winter jacket from the wet weather with Dation. Alicel assumed that the parasol was also made of Dation. Though it was hardly cold, even with the rain, Adela had stated to Alicel earlier on that she would probably fall asleep on the flight, and she was quite the demon when stirred from a nap.

"Yeah, I'm ready. Aren't you hot in that?" Alicel replied, referring to the black stockings and green boots.

"Not really, since it's raining, it's cooler, and it's not like I can wear my regular shoes in the rain anyway. They're cloth, so they'd get wet and crummy. Besides, I like this outfit. Let's gooo!"

As the two walked toward the Meredy Docks, Adela talked about everything from archery, to stuffed animals with a smile on her face, while Jeckt sat silently in her mind, facing a chained up Xaviae with a peaceful expression while he peered into his crystal ball. It was reflecting scene's from this morning, when Adela had rushed out of the house and into the base to pick up the mahstion gun in which he'd forbidden her to pick up the day before. She wasn't about to leave it behind for Kallen to find. It was dangerous, after all. And what it did to people was the scariest of all. He looked up from the crystal ball as it came to the scene where she touched it, and switched from a third party view, to Xaviae and Jeckt, who were both observing Adela as she picked up the gun and stowed it away for a second time.

[i]"Are you going to attack me, in this window of opportunity?" Jeckt's smile turned into a mocking smirk while Xaviae sighed indifferently.

"There's not much point. The chains are fixed to equal my power, so if I get a boost, then the chains will too, right?" He said in a bored tone.

"That's right." Jeckt laughed, "You've finally resigned yourself to fate, hm? Now I wouldn't try any tricks again, I know why that gun gets heavier the longer Adela carries it. Don't feed it, you sneak."

"What I do is my business, as long as I'm all chained up, right?"[i]

"And my favorite stuffed animal is Moo-Moo, and he's a cow. I like polka dots, and his spots make him look like he's wearing polka dots, but I guess I like Firedoggie, he's my Dalmatian. He's a stuffed animal too though." Adela was saying as Jarek taunted a nonchalant Xaviae, blocking his and Xaviae's exchange from her ears, "Hey, I never found out, where are you from? Carn, like Rosaline?"

"No, I'm from Alta." Alicel answered as they approached the docks, using her mahstion to guide the water away from her so that the water fell away from her, "Though my entire family is from Carn, and my hometown is pretty close to the border. Aertan is in my family, though I'm not sure how we're related. Judging by our ages, he's probably my cousin or something."

"Ohh, so that's why you don't have a tattoo. I was wondering about that." Adela said skipping ahead and walking backwards, "I'm a natural born Tealian. But I guess not many kids my age could get into the Tealian Forces if you weren't originally Tealian anyway. Oh, actually, Aertan could be your brother you know."

"No, his mother died a few years before I was born, the book on our family says so." Alicel shrugged, "He kind of gives me the creeps."

"I think he's funny!" Adela laughed.

"...Funny...?" Alicel sweatdropped, unable to recall any instance in which Aertan could possibly be even connected to the word 'joke' or 'laugh'.

~

"You're here awful early." Aertan said flatly, walking up to Reid and taking a sweeping glance around to hopefully catch sight of someone else who had gotten here just as early as them. Aertan was early merely because as the one who originally a villain, he wasn't about to go and let their imaginations romp about, making theories as to why he was late. In the morning he had gone to the infirmary to have his arm re-bandaged, and it was as Haeon't said; it looked considerably less gruesome, though still odd nonetheless. Over his head, Geote held an umbrella he'd borrowed/stolen from the infirmary, and this kept Aertan quite dry, along with the help of his wings. Draped over his shoulder was his jacket, double breasted and lined with fur. So he was a priest. Didn't mean he had no money for a jacket. After the pain and shock had dulled off even more then when he'd been discussing his theory to Faewyn, he'd gone and asked a healer to sew on an extension to his sleeve, so no matter which way he moved his arm, nobody would have to bear witness to the stump that made he himself gag as well.

"Hmmm." Aertan turned around and peered down the streets that lead to the dock, still hoping to see someone who would save him from having to strike up conversation with a brat who shot an arrow through Haeon't. However, he promptly turned around when he saw his two saviors. Definitely not his first-rate choices.

"Hi guys!!" Adela called as she waved to them enthusiastically.

Alter Ego
October 29th, 2007, 03:24 AM
OOC: Sorry for not posting yesterday. Dad's birthday sort of ate up the time. x3 Ah well, random time jump time, go!

By the way, did we make a random shift from Beta to Gregar at some point? 'Cause, it started out Beta, the snowy place (just checked the post) but now everyone's going Gregar, the place that moves about every which way. So umm...which is it? o.O

IC:

The night had passed in a flash for Faewyn. She had barely managed to lay her head on the pillow when a crack of thunder had announced daybreak. The weather was hardly the most invigorating around, but Faewyn didn't mind. Her conversation with Aertan yesterday had left her feeling strangely optimistic. He was a nice person, even though he tried to hide it and looked so imposing, the former priest really was a nice person deep down like she had thought. Granted, this was the way Faewyn thought about most people, but it was a pleasant surprise to find that she had actually been right for a change.

As such, Faewyn was as chipper as could be as she strode down the rainy streets, invoking a number of quizzical glances from passers by. In preparation for the trip, she had reluctantly conceded to exchanging her tank top for her old shirt, thrilled to find a sweater of a shade very close to the color of the switched out garment in a store. It wasn't her outfit that got the stares, though, it was the breeze that followed her, gently but firmly altering the trajectories of the incoming raindrops so that they fell just short of the girl.

"Good morning!" Faewyn called merrily as she spotted her friends on the dock, giving them all a wave in greeting as she strode over. Her glance subconsciously shifted towards Aertan's bandaged arm, but she caught herself in mid-action and managed to feign having stared at the ship behind him in awe instead. After all, she was genuinely impressed by this type of machinery. She really would have wanted to ask how the former priest was holding up, but given his wish to "be a wuss in his own time" as he had put it, he would undoubtedly not have appreciated the question in such company. And speaking of company...Faewyn blinked.

"Where's Reece?" she asked no-one in particular, re-adjusting the strap of messenger bag to a slightly more comfortable position, "Isn't this the time we were supposed to meet?"

Faewyn didn't need to wait long for her answer, though, as a loud shout broke through the morning air.

"Wait up!" a dot of red hollered from the distance, growing larger at a rapid rate. Soon, it was close enough to be identified as the figure of Reece; the soldier was in full sprint, and by the looks of it he had spent the morning in exercise, sweat mingling with the raindrops running down his soaked, blonde hair and face. The soldier, too, seemed to have gone through an outfit change of sorts, his usual shirt and trousers now covered by a thick overcoat in the same garish shade of red as his shirt and the light, sandal-like footwear replaced by a pair of heavy, dark brown boots. As Reece came to a halt by the group, he took a few seconds to catch his breath and brush his damp hair aside from his face before turning to give the group his usual confident grin.

"Sorry I'm late." he remarked, still panting lightly from exhaustion, "I finally got it just right, so I sort of lost track of time on the practice field. So, are we ready to go? I'm itching to put this new technique of mine to the test."

Within the combined mines of the group, an ever so slight martyr's sigh escaped Sieglinde, "I did try to remind him about the time." she remarked, "But Reece insisted on going another round. My apologies for this delay. And Isaire, is that really necessary?" she directed the last question towards Faewyn's mind, indicating the re-directed droplets.

"It's no bother." the fael replied calmly, "And considering the temperatures we're heading into, it wouldn't be prudent to arrive soaked. Speaking of which..." through Faewyn's eyes, Isaire turned his glance to Reid, "Perhaps we should move somewhere more sheltered? We have too much riding on this mission to jeopardize it by having someone catch a cold."

parallelzero
November 1st, 2007, 03:43 PM
OOC: Sorry, that was a typo on my part. It was late when I made my last post. Also, sorry for taking so long. I've had a less than desirable amount of homework this weekend.

Reid perked up in shock as Aertan addressed him upon his arrival in a flat tone that reminded him of his father. He got to his feet once more, and looked the man over. Something definitely seemed different about him, and Mistral confirmed this by saying she wasn't sensing as strong a dark aura from him as he had been exerting the day prior. Reid's eyes eventually wandered over to Aertan's side- "HOLY CRAP WHAT THE HELL DID YOU DO!?" Reid and Mistral shouted in absolute unison, both verbally and mentally towards Aertan's fael. Yup, part of the man's arm was certainly absent, which wasn't exactly a natural occurrence. "I certainly hope you know what you're doing..." Reid sighed as his arms fell back to his sides, eyes twitching in irritation, "We don't need another burden." He made an implied reference to Reece, who had arrived late. Perhaps it was because of the situation with Rod, but Reid had become much more suspicious of people. Mistral hoped he wouldn't become some dried up kid who trusted nobody by the time their journey was through.

Now you two lovebirds settle down. Mistral joked as she entered the conversation between Sieglinde and Isaire. We haven't formally met yet, have we? I'm Reid's fael, Mistral, nice to meet you! She curtsied in her sundress in a cute manner, before making contact with Jeckt. I guess I owe you a debt of gratitude. I probably would have died last night if nobody was around. Meet us out on the deck in about half an hour. We have something for you guys. Mistral proceeded to cut off her link with Jeckt, and returned to her 'conversation' with the other two, leaving Reid to blush and avoid eye contact with Adela for the time being.

With all said and done, Reid proceeded to board the airship. It was an even greater sight to behold while on board than off. The entire thing was designed similar to a blimp, however the construction of the body was reminiscent of ancient pirate ships, although made of steel and lined with rows and rows of seats on the deck and below. In fact, these were the types of ships sky pirates used, albeit modified. The ship finally departed, giving the passengers a clear view of the vast world below them. They flew over many small floating islands, the minuscule oceans, both the desert and small forested lands of the Underneath. From up in the light purple sky, the world looked so small. They traveled for about half an hour before Reid chose an empty area on the deck to meet Adela upon. The temperature was slowly becoming cooler as the went further north. It would be time to change soon.

------

"WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING!? GET THEM THE HELL OUT OF THERE!" Cress shouted out of pure hatred at the large man in the white lab coat, whom of which stabbed the apostle in the stomach with a large knife, not saying a word, and leaving the knife there, which in turn sent Cress to his knees. "DAMMIT. ANSWER ME." They were in what appeared to be a lab, and Cress was badly beaten up, a sign that he had dared to resist the Carn military during the night. Not much was in this brightly lit white room other than a large chamber that appeared to be in use. On the ground beside Cress in a painful position was Azyla, whom the scientist had shot upon the entrance of the two apostles into the lab with a strange, black, metal device.

"What do you think I'm doing, seventh?" The man replied in a voice that touched on insanity as he ripped the knife out of the boys stomach, spilling his blood upon the floor even further before kicking him onto his back. "I'm creating an eighth, one more powerful and obedient than that damn Velin, as per Padre's request, of course." A grin formed on his face, a grin that made Cress want to get up and choke him. But alas, his vision was fading quickly, along with his ability to move. If only the others weren't away on a mission. Whether or not they liked Cress would have been irrelevant, none of them would have stood for THE Padre scheming against them, especially by utilizing prisons meant to be shipped to the capital.

"...Bastard..." He murmured before passing out.

"Now, I hope when you two wake up, you'll realize who you're dealing with.

Loki
November 1st, 2007, 04:28 PM
Aertan leaned back slightly and stared up at the rainy sky with a bored expression, stuffing his hand into his pocket as Reid discovered his loss of arm. He listened patiently, and stifled a yawn midway through. He was getting tired already.

“A burden?” Aertan raised an eyebrow, glaring down at Reid with great distaste, “Even if I cut off my hand, I still have one more hand then you.” He waved lazily at Geote and Haeon’t before replacing his hand, “Either way, you shouldn’t refer to us as burdens, because quite frankly, that’s not the best way to go about making allies. I’m sure you wouldn’t be all too thrilled to go face that apostle all by your little lonesome.”

In the meantime, Adela grinned at Reid while pretending she didn’t notice his actions of avoiding her gaze as she pressed down on her messenger bag, loaded down by the lead burden of the mahstion gun. Again. She wasn’t too keen on staring at him either, seeing as having a gun pointed at you wasn’t exactly something to recover from a few hours later. And so, she covered up her discomfort by rambling off to Alicel for the second time about her stuffed animals. (Only one of which actually existed.) As she listed them off, Jeckt smiled and nodded to Mistral, telling her that they’d definitely be there, and that she owed him nothing. He was still sitting in front of Xaviae, though the latter had long ago nodded off into a restless nap, his head dangling limply from his neck as he was propped up by the chains. Jeckt turned back to his crystal ball and ignored the conversations that the other faels were participating in. He had no interest in trivial things like that. The chains were getting weaker, after all, and it was Jeckt’s duty to make sure that Xaviae stayed right where he was.

By the time that everyone had safely boarded the airship, Aertan had made himself comfortable in one of the sitting rooms, trying to ignore the unskillfully hidden glances at his arm while he read from an adventure book set in Carn. It was hard to get used to turning the pages with just one hand, but wasn’t all too difficult to get used to, as the book was paperback, and Haeon’t held the other side. (It was still quite awkward, regardless.)

Adela had stationed herself on Aertan’s right, giving a cheerful wave to anyone who happened to glance at them, just to notify them that they sucked at indiscreet glances. After twenty minutes of this, Adela hopped up from her seat and left without a word to Aertan, who did just the same. It was a short one-way trip to the deck, but having bumped into Alicel, who was dressed in her black stockings, gloves, and white winter coat, Adela paused to chatter away to her. Thus, she stalled for time this way, leaving her 3 minutes late by the time she opened the door leading to the deck.

She searched about for Reid, and caught sight of him soon enough. Faster then she’d anticipated anyway.

Waving, Adela took even strides while listening to Jeckt address Mistral.

“To what do we owe this pleasure?” Jeckt said with a smile, the crystal ball turning into a ball of dation and seeping into Xaviae’s chains as he left Adela’s mind.

“Hi!” Adela chirped with a smile identical to Jeckt's, but it was soon replaced with a chiding tone, “Hey, you were sitting out there in the rain without an umbrella? You're still soaked, and it's cold out here!"

parallelzero
November 4th, 2007, 04:17 PM
"Okay, that is the ship approaching holds the targets." A voice just dripping with a thick Spanish accent spoke to the apostles atop a snowy hill. The large red eyes of the voice's origin glared around at the rest of the group before him, although they peered more curiously at the purple haired twins across from him. Arturo Plasterez was, for the first time in his very short life, nervous. Nothing was going according to plan. First of all, against his own personal request, those damn Carn uppers had modified his request to include Velin, meaning that it would be difficult for him to keep command, despite knowing the most about the issue. Also, those damn twins were here. The only two apostles who weren't battle tested for their original purpose was to serve as guinea pigs for further experiments, although this was interrupted after a certain turn of events that was never released to them. Now, to top it off, the ship carrying the targets was half an hour early, meaning it must have caught some good wind on the way.

Arturo Plasterez was a boy no older in appearance than fifteen years. His black hair was long (about to his shoulders) and straight, with a sheen that suggested he took care of it like it was his own babe. Arturo had the roles of assassin, spy, and thief in their happy little apostle brigade, and his physical appearance and choice in clothing reflected that. He was lean, yet muscular, the length of his legs and arms suggested he was quite flexible. Height wise, he stood around 5'9", 5'11" if you included the two inch black horns that pierced through the black hood shrouding his head in darkness. The hood over his head was attached to a thick black cloak that was seemingly too large, as it flowed over the length of his arms and hands. This was for the better, however, since it gave Arturo a place to hide his claws and various other instruments of death for his missions.

The boy with the Spanish accent spoke once more, this time shouting orders and an explanation. "Okay, since the ship is almost here, I suppose I should give you all an update. You see..." Arturo proceeded to explain to the group what he had overheard. This included everything about faels, negafaels, and the power it gave those stupid kids. The Carn soldier that was mandatory in any apostle operation shook his head in a manner that suggested he didn't believe the story, but Arturo shook it off. "Kira and Kyra, your targets are the one's known as Reid Davies and Adela Ciaccio." He handed the twins a picture each, and their long, forked, dark purple tails began swishing back and forth in both curiosity and excitement. While Kira seemed absolutely elated at how cute the boy she was going to fight looked, Kyra was rather indifferent, as usual. She still couldn't shake the feeling that something was amiss. "Velin, you are charged with the disposal of Faewyn Ayre and Reece Everard, and I personally have been assigned with Aertan Svartel." He handed Velin the pictures cautiously before removing the photo of his own target from within his cloak. "So, then I guess... OPERATION COMMENCE."

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

"No, no, I'm not cold." Reid lied blatantly. His skin was already losing colour and his hair taking on an icy appearance. After all, they were half an hour ahead of schedule, nearly at their destination. Reid cursed himself for not changing earlier, and Mistral cursed him as well. After all, if he was cold, she was cold. Despite his lack of body heat, Reid's face was giving off a reddish hue, much like Mistral when Jeckt entered her domain of an endless sky, in which the two stood upon a lone piece of rock floating amidst a vast blue sky. Reid had been thinking about it ever since the night before. What were his feelings for Rosaline? What were his feelings for Adela? His mind had been bogged down by such things overnight, but he had finally decided on an answer. Mistral ignored Jeckt's question, and approached him until she was less than an arms length from him. Reid did the same, only in regards to Adela.

"Close your eyes and hold out your hands." Reid and Mistral spoke out at the same time. Reid proceeded to hold his right hand out to Adela's left hand, and he dropped something in her hand. It was a thin, gold chain necklace with a charm on it shaped like a majestic, golden butterfly. "Don't open your eyes yet. That necklace belonged to my mother. You see, my dad gave it to her as an engagement present along with the ring..." At the same time, Mistral had dropped a silver necklace of the same design into Jeckt's left hand. Furthermore, Mistral moved in closer to Jeckt, and took his hand with with the bracelet, and planted a kiss on his lips. Before he knew what he was doing, Reid had done the same with Adela. His face turned bright red after about five seconds, and he broke away and changed direction so that he wasn't facing her. "S-s-s-sorry! I-I-I don't know what I was doing!" Mistral turned away from Jeckt as well, suggesting she seconded the notion.

Reid's attention was suddenly broken by an overwhelming force of mahstion. "Aw, and here I was hoping you were single. You're so cute, after all~" Reid's gaze was directly directly behind the pair, and it set upon a pair of children. Twin girls to be exact, but Reid recognized the mahstion signature that proved them not to be human. He reached for his bow and knocked it, aiming at the one who had spoken.

"Dammit, more of you damn Apostles. What the hell did you do with Rosaline!?" These two girls were definately apostles. For one, they had long, dark purple tails that were forked like a demon, they had fangs, claws, and not to mention a third eye each.

Kira's pastel purple eyes met Reid's own green eyes, and she bared her fangs in a grin. "I hope you know you don't stand a chance. It'll be a shame to scratch off that cute face of yours."

"Adela Ciaccio." Kyra spoke, void of emotion. "Presently, you do not possess enough power to defeat me. My eye can show me that much. It would be best if you dropped your weapon and surrendered peacefully."

Meanwhile, Arturo blasted down the door of the sitting room hosting Aertan Svartel with a shot of dation. "Come out, traitor. It is, how you say, nothing personal. However, Aertan Svartel, I must dispose of you."

Loki
November 4th, 2007, 05:06 PM
Though she'd been somewhat expecting it, with how embarrassed Reid had been before, everything was still a big bang of a surprise. Refused the notion was not something that had even crossed her mind, but she'd been too shocked and nervous to return it. With the necklace still resting in her flat palm, Adela turned even deeper a shade of red then Reid, as she listened with interest to how Jeckt had responded. He didn't seem embarrassed at all. He smiled and chuckled as he closed his hand around the silver necklace.

"Thank you for the necklace and the kiss." He said gently, "And in return, please, allow me to show you-"

"N-No it-it's okay! I-" Adela stammered, as flustered as Reid herself, as she tried to think of something to say.

But Adela's hand automatically closed protectively around the necklace when a voice interrupted them, while Jeckt's smile grew wider. The two apostles were possibly even more repulsive then the first she'd seen, and she wondered if they, too, would have two mahstion. Did they wield Lionus? It was all Adela could do, to keep from switching opponents with Reid. Even if he'd already given her the necklace, a pang of jealousy at how open the apostle was about Reid shot through her and she wanted to tell her that not even the most desperate guy would even look at an ugly butt like her. But Adela was more surprised at Reid's kiss then the news that the calmer (somewhat less irritating) apostle delivered to her. She wasn't all that powerful, to be sure. But this didn't stop her from getting agitated. Agitated and terrified at the same time. Jeckt laughed, though it sounded a bit more like a cackle then his normal, good-natured tone, at the apostle's words. He didn't feel agitated. He didn't feel the slightest hint of terror. And his expression was being written over with a malicious grin as his yellow eyes slid to Xaviae, who'd awaken to witness Jeckt's exchange between Mistral. He looked positively livid.

"Jealous?" Was all Jeckt had uttered before Xaviae's snow white hair instantly turned black, the fael struggling against the white chains which were also slowly turning a distinct black color as they were strained. The sound of metal scraping and knocking against metal filled the air as Xaviae yelled various curse words at an indifferent Jeckt. Though the chained up fael managed to break one link, there were five other different chains that bound him to the tree.

With this sudden change in the setting of her mind, Adela stumbled back and clutched her head as a splitting pain passed as quickly as it had come. The struggle hadn't stopped, but Xaviae's sudden power-boost of mahstion had settled, and his black hair had turned white again, the chains still black as he struggled fruitlessly, now silent as the remaining chains held him tight. Jeckt waved his hand around lazily, adding power to the chains while peering down at his crystal ball, his smile fading just enough so that one could hardly tell whether it was a smile or not. After all, he could stay in Adela's mind if he wasn't smiling. But, Jeckt was far from pleased. The satisfaction in getting a kiss from Mistral in front of Xaviae quickly washed away as he watched scene's play out in the crystal ball.

"Don't interfere." Jeckt snapped at Xaviae who stopped struggling for a moment and peered with curiosity at Jeckt's newfound bitterness. But he continued his fight when Jeckt frowned and he heard the crystal ball shatter.

"Surrender?" Adela snarled at the apostle as her voice deepened in the slightest, finally responding as she regained her balance as though nothing had ever happened, "Well alright," Jeckt's voice said casually, "But you first." Jeckt moved Adela's hand into her side bag and fished about for a split second. He knew exactly where the gun was. The fishing around was just for effect. And so in another split second, Jeckt had whipped out the gun, while aiming it at the apostle, and his dark expression grew passive. It had taken longer then the limit Adela had given him, for him to find out what it did, and how to use it. But, the crystal ball had granted him a worthy note.

"Stand still, okay?" Jeckt said flatly, before pulling the trigger, and feeling the mahstion in his hand get sucked out like the gun was a vaccuum.


~

Aertan looked up from his book as the people who had been around him scattered at the sight of the apostle. Sighing, Aertan dog-earred the page he'd been reading before letting go of the book, Haeon't putting it back in the pocket of the black coat that lay in a pile beside him. Standing up, Aertan brushed his shirt off before examining the apostle himself. It was certainly ugly, and swathed in a cloak with huge hideous horns.

"Hmm..." Aertan said sighing, "I don't see why they're suddenly making a fuss about being a traitor. It's not like I suddenly changed my last name to Svartel yesterday." Shrugging, Aertan waved his hand once toward Geote who's eye switched to the circular fanged mouth, "But, it's everything personal." Aertan said with a displeased expression, "Wanna chat about Juliet?"

But Geote didn't want to chat, and Aertan had no mind for peaceful negotiations for information. Not with this devil-spawn that talked funny. As Geote burst into flame, Aertan pulled out a small glass sphere, no bigger then a small bell. In fact, it even made a clear chiming sound whenever Aertan shook it. If anyone would've recognized it, Alicel would've been the first. But regardless of who recognized it and who didn't, he handed the sphere to Haeon't who, after getting a good grasp on it, rushed after Geote, the both of them stretching out and out to attack the apostle.

"It will be, as you say, 'un estallido'."

Alter Ego
November 5th, 2007, 01:38 AM
Velin merely gave the fifth an impassive look as he gave them the briefing, accepting his own part without a single hint of an expression on his face; in other words, it was just like usual. He did not, however, refrain from voicing one opinion of his own:

"Do not presume to command me, fifth." he said in his usual monotone, "You may have been charged with holding onto the specifics on the mission, but at no point have I been assigned to act as your underling." there was an ever so slight hint of a threat in his voice, but it would have been completely lost to most, "You are only to convey the information as you have been assigned to. Any application thereof is no concern of yours."

With that said, the first apostle idly turned his gaze to the pictures he had received. The male struck him as nothing spectacular, but the other...though only someone with a considerable sense of perception could have spotted the difference, the first's eyes widened slightly at the sight of Faewyn's picture. He may not have been granted supernatural powers of perception like Kyra's, but he had always had a knack for memorizing distinct features of people, and the features of this girl-child...though the initial reaction within the sanctuary of Velin's mind had been surprise, it had now shifted to mild interest. Maybe...just maybe it would be worthwhile to have a little chat with his prey before he finished the job.

He didn't voice these thoughts, of course. In fact, Velin stuck to his usual manner and decided not to say anything whatsoever, merely gazing at the ship for a brief moment before vanishing in a blur of motion and Wionus.

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

"It seems I have found you."

Faewyn spun around as the voice struck her ears, sighing in relief as she recognized the person responsible for the call; a certain blonde soldier in a garish red overcoat who was currently striding down the stairs of the engine room which Faewyn had made her place of residence the moment she had discovered it.

"Everyone else is out admiring the scenery and you're focusing on the machinery." Reece gave a good-natured chuckle, smiling at the girl as he joined him by the side of a particularly impressive set of gears, "Some things never change, huh?"

"Guess not." Faewyn replied somewhat sheepishly, a bit unsure as to whether this was a compliment or a reprimand, but deciding on the former as she tore her eyes away from the marvel of engineering surrounding her and instead faced Reece, "You were looking for me?"

The soldier nodded, "Is that such a surprise?" he inquired, "I mean, we haven't had a proper chat since you left for Alta, have we? Besides..." Reece grimaced, "I don't think your new friends are too fond of me."

"You're talking about Reid, aren't you?" Faewyn asked, "I-I know it doesn't seem like it now, but he's really a caring person deep down, it's just that with everything that's happened-with Rod, and Rosaline, and-"

"I get it." Reece replied, "And to be honest, I haven't exactly done my best to make a good first impression on him either." he shook his head slowly, "From what I gather he's a good kid, just way too wrapped up in his own damn mind." he shook his head, glancing out over the machinery as well, "To be honest, the one I'm really concerned about is this Aertan fellow. I mean, he's a Carn priest, right?" the soldier briefly locked eyes with Faewyn, his expression dead serious, "Can we really trust him?"

"Of course we can." Faewyn retorted, shocked by this sudden accusation, even though it wasn't directed at her. Then again, considering her friend's past maybe this should have been expected, "Reece, he's not like those people. I know he looks really scary and I know he doesn't act polite, but Aertan is really not like that; he's just-" her voice trembled slightly, "-he's just looking for someone he cares about, just like I am!"

"Look, Fay, I'm sorry I brought the thing about your folks up." Reece began, "I really didn't mean to, but you're being too trusting. The priesthood of Thylonstus is like that, they'll say almost anything just to get a stab at your back; you can't just take them on their word." his expression hardened, "I'm not going to let you get hurt by those Thylonstite wretches again."

"Reece..." Faewyn didn't know what to say. On one hand, she was outraged at her friend's intolerance, but on the other...the sentiment behind those words was in plain view, and she couldn't help being touched by it. It was then that something peculiar caught her eye, "What-" Faewyn began, pointing in puzzlement at the door that had just been flung open by a powerful gale, a solitary pitch-black feather floating towards them, "What's-"

"Fay! Get back!"

The girl was offered no explanation as her long-time friend suddenly shoved her aside, bringing out his glaive faster than what she had even thought possible. As it turned out, this was the minimum speed required to avert the assault, evidence of which being the set of pitch-black nails that had been parried by the shaft of the weapon, just inches away from his throat.

It was then that their assailant's mahstion presence struck, Isaire's comforting presence at the back of her mind being the only thing that kept Faewyn from physically reeling back as she attempted to return upright and fumbled to pull out her own weapon. This creature...the girl stared in awe at the tall, slender figure with his ivory-colored skin, gray hair, massive pitch-black wings and lifeless, light blue eyes. Cress' mahstion presence might have seemed otherworldly, but compared to this being it was minute.

Reece, on the other hand, didn't seem to care about the difference in power levels, his gaze instead focused on the black rose pendant that hung around the stranger's neck, a look far more hateful than Faewyn had ever seen evident on the soldier's face.

The apostle seemed to be the only one who was being truly calm about the situation, merely observing, his parried attack with mild interest, "Quite impressive speed..." he remarked casually, his monotone voice sending an involuntary shiver down Faewyn's spine, "...I take it, this is the power of a fael?"

"Perhaps..." Reece retorted, turning the glaive with all his might as he aimed a strike at the apostle's neck, "...and I take it, you would be another apostle?"

The other merely shrugged, nonchalantly slipping backwards and leaving the glaive to slice thin air, "I am death come for you." he replied, "I see no reason to burden you with further details during your last moments of existence."

"Not a very talkative type, are you?" Reece replied, placing himself in a battle ready pose, "Let's get this over with then, shall we?"

"Reece..." Faewyn interjected meekly.

"Don't worry, Fay." her friend interrupted, his glance not leaving their opponent for a second, "I said that I'm not going to let any one of these creeps hurt you, and you should know..." he grinned confidently, "...I'm a man of my word."

parallelzero
November 5th, 2007, 06:39 PM
"Heh, I'm not as stupid as to fall for the tricks of your fael. I have seen them enough to understand their capacity." Arturo taunted cockily as he suddenly disappeared, only to reappear outside of the attack seconds later. It was unnatural the speeds these things could move at. "As for the princess. I'll tell you what know as long as you present me with an exhilarating fight in return. Deal? Deal. I was order to capture Miss Juliet a few weeks ago. A peculiar order, wouldn't you say? For Carn to order one of their units to capture their own princess? I haven't bothered dwelling on it that much. There must be some sort of resistance taking place. Though, don't worry, your pretty little princess is being treated with the utmost care in her lovely little cell."

---------

A look of undeniable shock passed across Kyra's face as the mahstion bullet sped at her skull. Luckily, she dodged it at the very last opportunity by darting to the left, and then taking to the sky, her blue and red bat wings beating rapidly. She glanced down at her sister, who nodded, before pointing her hands towards the ship. Fionus and wation clearly formed in the right and left hands respectively, and she smacked them together before opening her palms towards the ship, releasing a thick steamy mist that impaired everyone's vision. Reid could have easily blown the steam away, had he not been too busy dodging blast after blast of fionus balls being thrown at him anonymously from Kira. He finally was given an opportunity to strike back, and he aimed his bow carefully at the source of the fionus. The resulting arrow never made contact with a target, yet the fionus continued to come at him. He tried another shot. The same thing occurred. He began questioning why he wasn't hitting her.

"You haven't figured it out yet? Aww, you're so cute when you're puzzled~" Kira questioned sweetly as she stepped out of the steam, which Kyra now allowed to fade. "With my third eye, I can read your movements, I can tell what you're going to do next~" With that said she darted towards the boy, not to attack, but to plant a kiss on his lips, before backing off in an embarrassed manner. She brought her right hand up to the side of her head as she blushed. "Oh my, that was so embarrassing, but I just couldn't resist~ <3." It was obvious at this point that she had noted Adela's earlier reaction, and was acting with the intention of ticking her off. Kyra sighed from above. The battlefield was no kind of place for that kind of conduct, and if that girl raised the weird metal thing to her sister, she'd be done for. Just what WAS that? It multiplied Adela's mahstion at least ten fold.

"Reid, are you thinking what I'm thinking?" Mistral contacted her host in the serious tone she had possessed when they first met.

"Yep, but wait. She's readying something, I can tell by the tightened stance she's holding. We better wait until we figure out what she's doing before we move."

"Agreed."

Loki
November 5th, 2007, 07:35 PM
ooc; Haeon't and Geote... (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v243/Kaiyoseila/haegeo.jpg), Reid and Adela (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v243/Kaiyoseila/reidadela.png), Rosaline (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v243/Kaiyoseila/hats.png),Faewyn, Alicel, and Aertan (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v243/Kaiyoseila/faeaerali.png)

Just some quick sketches for practice. :3 No wings though. Sorry, I don't do wings. xD;;

~

"THIS MAKES ME SO MAD!!!" Alicel squeezed her eyes shut as Kranius roared and stomped around in her mind "THEY IGNORED US TO THE FULLEST!!! AM I NOT WORTHY OR SOMETHING!?!?"

"I'm personally kind of glad they forgot about us..." Alicel muttered, only to be met with more angry yells echoing throughout her head. It was giving her a headache, and focusing on blending in with the crowd was getting harder and harder. Alicel suddenly stopped and thought. Faewyn had never really been much of a fighter either. And when Aertan was still... Aertan, she'd starting using a technique that had practically cut her thumb off just by powering it up. Even if Alicel herself sucked at fighting, two was always better then one. She spun around and peered through the various people for sight of Faewyn, or anyone.

It wasn't like Alicel could get off the airship anyway. Might as well make herself useful.

~

"Oh come now." Jeckt scoffed, "I asked you to stand still, didn't I?" He shot another bullet that seared through the cloud of smoke and dragged a portion of it away, "Be a good little witch, won't you?"

He peered about through the thick steam for his target and while he searched with an annoyed and furrowed brow, Jeckt brought Adela's left hand up to her mouth and sucked up the air where her middle, ring, and pink finger should've been, having long disappeared into the black mahstion bullets. As the fingers grew back, the tendrils of dation molding themselves into new fingers, Jeckt stumbled backward, tightening his grip on the gun as Xaviae broke the one of the chains that held him back. What terrible timing.

The arm that held the mahstion gun erupted in dation as Jeckt grinned maliciously at nothing in particular, since the fog blinded him. Though he was smiling, he stayed in control, and Adela stood trembling as she watched from her own mind, bound by the same chains that held Xaviae to the mother tree. She didn't understand how Jeckt could keep her in her mind against her will.

Jeckt watched with a bored expression as Kira gave Reid a kiss; he could care less. But Adela burned with jealousy, frustration at being a prisoner in her own mind, and hatred toward the apostle. She so dearly wanted to rip her to pieces. But Jeckt's chains kept her held strictly in place. Resigned to her fate of being stuck there until the battle's end, she did the only thing she could do. Forcing Jeckt to move her hand that held the necklace, she deposited it in the pocket of her jacket before biting her lip as hard as she could to keep from crying. There was no way she would give the apostle the satisfaction, even if the apostle couldn't see her.

Jeckt laughed and lifted the gun into the air, feeling around for the point where the mahstion concentration was greatest. It was distracting, having another overflowing powerplant fighting Reid, but he pointed at the point he felt the most dense mahstion, when compared to the mahstion in the fog, and the imposing presence all around him.

"Come out, come out," Jeckt sang in a taunting way, not caring that he was obviously at the disadvantage, "wherever you are~"

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

Aertan turned his head to face Arturo with a livid expression, his eyes turning onyx black as from out of the dot on his forehead sprouted white liquidy tendrils that moved backwards and formed a helmet of white bone, spattered with faded gray spots and thick horn-like spikes protruding from the back of the mask, "Shut up already, if you can't talk straight, don't talk at all." Came a deep mocking voice that was somewhat muffled by the mask as Geote's hand was extinguished of mahstion and recoiled into it's place inside Aertan's wings.

"You know all about us, eh?" Geote said, his voice monotonous and hardly anything like his insane and sadistic cackle that constantly came from the dormant hand, as Haeon't dropped the glass ball into his outstretched hand, "So I guess it's okay for you to stop calling us 'curses of Tylonstus', right? Because that old faker is getting lamer as the days go by."

He dropped the glass ball onto the ground and stepped on it, but instead of sending an explosion into the air, it branched off into five different walls of fire that seperated the sitting room into five different sections, save for the small ring that surrounded Geote.

"Isn't this a nice? Keeps you from running away like a coward, doesn't it?" Geote said snapping his fingers as the flames roared even higher and Haeon't recoiled into her own place in the great black bat wings. Geote whipped out two small swords with the hand he hadn't fashioned out of fionus, and with a small 'click!' they latched together at the handle, forming the double bladed naginata-style weapon that Aertan rarely used. It was, after all, not his specialty weapon.

"So." Geote said idly, waiting for Arturo to find his way into the center ring of fire, and thinking of the fact that he would only have to find one place to get both Rosaline and Juliet back, "Looks like I hit two birds with one stone."

Alter Ego
November 7th, 2007, 06:32 AM
OOC: OMG, artwork! ^0^ Well, there's only so much I can say about the others, given that I'm not the authority on how they're supposed to look, but Faewyn certainly looks like herself. Love the expression. ^^

Oh, and since I finally got my but onto the writing chair with this sequence...

IC:

If there was one thing Faewyn hated it was battle. It wasn't just the thoughts of the consequences that worried her, it was the process itself; every agitated sound, every clash of metal and claw, every burst of mahstion. She hated all of it. The girl had enough willpower to cling to her weapon, but no matter how hard she tried she just couldn't find any way to help Reece as the soldier struggled to keep up with his opponent. The soldier had long since tossed his overcoat aside to keep it from hampering his movements, but even so not a single one of his attacks connected. No matter how fast the attack and no matter how clever the strategy Velin always seemed to be one step ahead, the impassive expression not leaving his face for a moment as his clawed hands danced around, blocking strike after strike. For now they seemed evenly matched, but it was obvious who was tiring faster, and needless to say, the thought didn't sit well with Faewyn.

She wanted to use the new techniques she had developed, to prove that she could fight to protect the ones she cared about, but no matter how hard she tried she couldn't bring herself to release the charged bolt on her crossbow out of fear that it would miss its mark and strike Reece instead. She had considered going into close combat, but the pace at which the blows were being traded was almost too much for her eyes to follow, let alone her body. Then there was mahstion, but the very thought of unleashing such a thing brought the image of Rod's mutilated body to her mind and she could do nothing but clench her teeth and wait. Wait for what? A miracle? She honestly didn't know, she couldn't even think straight, a solitary thought playing through her mind over and over again:

'Why?'

"You do realize that this is pointless." Velin remarked as he caught the blade of the glaive in his claws once more, unleashing a miniature whirlwind from the palm of his free hand which forced Reece to leap back, "I am more than your match in speed, power and endurance." he shook his head at the wounded soldier in front of him, "This is a game you can't win."

"Don't-don't count me out just yet." Reece panted in return, wiping off part of the blood spilling over his left eye with the back of his hand. "That was just a warm-up."

"Oh?" the apostle retorted, casually plucking a single feather from his right wing and twirling it between his fingers, "Then I suppose you won't mind me making the first move. Observe, with a single feather..." he blew at the feather in his hand, sending it towards the soldier who watched the approaching object, "...I have breached your defense."

Faewyn gasped. Her eyes had gotten a bit more adjusted to the high speed combat, but Velin had still seemingly shifted from several meters away to standing right beside Reece, his claws around the soldier's throat. To Faewyn's surprise, the apostle didn't finish his attack, however.

"It appears we have a stalemate."

"I told you..." Reece replied, strengthening Fionus around the hand held mere inches from Velin's chest, specifically the point where his heart was, "...don't underestimate me."

"Prudent advice." Velin conceded, an ever so slight hint of teal spreading through a strand of hair hanging between his eyes, "I am poised to slit your throat, yet that amount of mahstion would no doubt stop my heart. What is your next move?"

The soldier gave him a mirthless grin, "I've already told that too." he replied, "I won't let you lay a finger on Faewyn."

"Even at the peril of your own life?"

"If I must."

"You're going to die."

"I could be faster."

"As could I."

"That's a risk I'll have to take."

For a moment, the two stared each other down. Then black claws and painfully bright, white fionus moved towards each other in a peculiar illusion of slow-motion. One blink later, the combatants disengaged, placing a good three meters between each other.

"Heh, looks like we have a draw." Reece remarked, grasping the singed scratch on the side of his neck.

Velin gave no reply, even as a charred fragment of the material on his chest fell off, revealing the surface burn on his chest. It was then that Sieglinde caught onto the situation.

"Reece, behind you!"

There was no time to react. The soldier barely managed a glimpse at the pitch-black Wionus-propelled feather charged towards the back of his neck, only to perform an abrupt ninety-degree change as a powerful gale swept in mere inches from his face, leaving behind a thin, pale skinned being with teal hair, her right hand stretched out and pointing to the wall into which the projectile had embedded itself, leaving a sizable crack in its wake.

Reece gaped in a mixture of shock and awe, "Fay..."

"Later." replied Isair's melodic voice, the ends of Faewyn's mouth curling up ever so slightly, "We have a battle to win."

parallelzero
November 9th, 2007, 02:43 PM
"This mahstion reading is not the same as before. Are you what they call a fael?" Kyra called out from apparently nowhere as the voice boomed from all around, addressing Jeckt. During the ruckus Kira had been creating, she had moved to fly below the aircraft, and was projecting her voice supernaturally. To say she was in a good condition would be a lie. When Jeckt randomly fired into the air, he pierced her right shoulder, leaving her dominant arm limp and crippled. Biting her lip was the only way she could keep herself from shouting out in pain. She wouldn't last long like this. No, not at all. She couldn't foresee attacks like her sister could In fact she had no abilities that would turn the battle in her favor at all. She decided it would be best to hide away until everything was over. Kira was more than enough to take the both of them...

"That was a great kiss. Thanks for kissing back~" Kira teased. She was acting a lot older than she looked, which left Reid embarrassed and confused. Even Kyra, down below, brought her left hand to her head in disgust. Just what was she doing?

"I DID NOT KISS BACK!" Reid shouted, looking back and forth between "Adela" and Kira in panic. The last thing he wanted was Adela to be ticked off at him after this whole fight. Kira used Reid's moment of distraction against him, and fired a massive ball of wionus at him. Originally, it looked like it wasn't going to do much more than get him wet, but he got a painful surprise as the already cold air mixed with the velocity of the ball froze it before impact, knocking Reid unto the wall of the main cabin behind him. Damnit, I'm freaking cold! I can't even fly dressed like this, it would be suicide for sure. He thought to himself as he got back to his feet, the wind completely knocked out of him. Oh well, the proposed strategy against this girl who could predict their moves would still work with his feet on the ground. "Ready Mistral?"

"Yup." Reid's body began to glow green like it did when he originally fought Cress as Mistral's mahstion poured into him. Down below, Kyra became worried for her sister after sensing this and became prepared to interrupt if need be. At the same time, a grin formed on Kira's face as Reid charged at her. He was going slice her with the blade he had at his side. She prepared to block the blow, and as Reid reached for the blade like she had predicted, something went horribly wrong. Her foresight suddenly dropped as Reid took on the form of... a girl? She would have laughed if this girl didn't have a mind consciousness different to Reid's. She didn't have the time to predict the move, and the hand of the girl thrusted at Kira with a condensed ball of wionus in her hand. It would certainly cripple her, if not kill her upon impact.

The sound of the hit connected was heard after Kira slammed her eyes shut, but she found herself reopening them as she felt no pain. They quickly widened in pure shock. In between Reid and herself was the body of Kyra, whom of which seemed to have been wounded previously. She had thrown herself onto Kira at the last second, taking the full force of the blow. Her four wings, once small yet proud, had been ripped out by the force of the attack, red blood splattered across both Mistral, who backed away in shock, and Kira. Kyra's eyes fell lifeless as the girl's body slid free of her sister's and fell onto her side on the ground. Kira let out a loud shriek as she backed away from her fallen sister, eyes wide, and face splattered with blood.

--------

"How does that saying go again? Don't count your chickens before they hatch?" Arturo responded in regards to Geote's arrogance, as water fall upon the walls of fire to douse their intensity. "You probably shouldn't have been counting those chickens without being aware of my second mahstion element." Despite the fact that he could have avoided it at this point, Arturo made his way to the center of the circle, no weapon or claws yet to be drawn. "Do your worst, fael. You're still one mahstion short of me."

Loki
November 9th, 2007, 04:24 PM
Xaviae stared silently at the crippled body of the apostle that was supposed to be his opponent as Jeckt laughed like a maniac, his self-satisfied cackle filling the air, as Xaviae approached Kyra. It was obvious that Kira would no longer be participating in this fight. The fael that was currently in control of Adela's body had never been faced with this situation. The concious apostle seemed to pitiful to finish off, though it was a perfect opportunity. So even as Jeckt used his greater influence of mahstion to break apart the chains that Xaviae had taken so much longer to eat away, he didn't relent, gripping the mahstion gun as Adela's eyes returned to their rightful color, as with her hair. Her expression had hardly changed from when Jeckt was in control though, as her mouth remained in a small indifferent frown.

Sympathy could've been something that Xaviae had, but Adela could hardly muster up the slightest bit of pity for the remaining apostle as she lifted the mahstion gun up to Kyra's face.

"I don't ever want to see you again." Adela hissed as tendrils of black mahstion coiled itself around Adela's arm and into the mahstion gun. She seemed not to notice the distress that the apostle was in. She seemed not to care.

Where are your wings?

Adela's eyes widened in shock as she pulled the trigger.

- x -

Geote stared at the burnt places where the flames were extinguished with a rueful eye.

"Hmm..." Geote mumbled passively, trying to block out the sounds of Haeon't shouting criticisms and curse words at him. He didn't want to hear Aertan's exhasperated sigh. Not coming from that sissy. He'd show them. He was a negafael, and Haeon't was a plufael. What did she know about fighting? Nothing. Aertan was a mortal. What did he know? Nothing.

Geote smiled and showed a mouthful of pointed teeth, "You just don't talk normally, do you?"

'He's such an idiot!! Stop provoking him!!' Alicel brought her hand up to her forehead silently, making a pained expression as Kranius laughed, clapping his hands as he melted away into the water that surrounded him.

Geote slid his hand to grasp the red rope as he swung the sword around like a lasso above his head, "Well. If we continue at this rate, we're not going to even exchange blows before everyone else finishes their fight."

And with that, Geote stepped forward and swung the sword toward Arturo.

- x -

It was one thing that Alicel had been ignored.

But Alicel much preferred that over having two disgustingly long nails (yet thankfully clean) stabbed through her. Grasping one of the long fingers with as tight a grip as she could muster, Alicel gasped for air as her blood pooled at her feet and she felt blood gurgling up her throat. As she coughed it up, she watched the red disappear in the black sleeves of the apostle's dress.

"Please," Villa requested solemnly, "Do tell me where I can find this 'Adela' child."

"Like hell." Alicel spat, and Villa looked as if she might cry when the blood mixed with saliva hit her cheek.

"Y-You...." Villa stammered as she trembled, "You're so mean!" She wailed twisting her fingers away from Alicel's stomach. She hadn't hit any vitals, of course. Villa wasn't like that, and if she had, then she couldn't get the answer she needed to finally succeed at a mission. She knew she was interrupting a different mission, with more important apostle's involved, but she had to finish. And so she'd tagged along, more like a fugitive then an apostle. Of course, having wings helped a lot. The waxy film that connected bladed frame had long retracted though, so only the blades stood her upright.

Collapsing into her own blood, Alicel took her free hand and clutched her midsection, where Villa's now bloody thumb, middle, and pinky finger had pierced. She listened with increasing annoyance as Villa weeped dramatically, but of course, not quite loud enough to attract the others' attention. She used no mahstion, and tried her very best to hide her mixed lionus and eation mahstion that naturally radiated off of her, just to keep from getting yelled at again.

But Villa couldn't stifle a shriek as she was blown back by a sudden whip of wation, crushing her into the ground. As Alicel used her free hand to push herself off the ground, blood dripping from her mouth and dying her once perfect blonde hair red, she glared at Villa, who stared fearfully into Alicel's icy blue eyes that were flushing with dark sapphire.

"What-?!" Villa started, but another blast of water crushed her to the ground. She hadn't been briefed on faels, nor did she know about any kind of desperate power boost that humans might get if their life was in serious danger.

But only three more heavy blasts of water connected before Alicel was thrown against the wall of the airship, and cuffs made of sand locked her wrists to the wall and a hammer fashioned out of lionus gave Alicel a good blow to the head.

Alter Ego
November 10th, 2007, 06:13 AM
"My-my..." Velin remarked at the unexpected interjection, "It seems like someone has finally found their courage. I take it this would be...fael transformation? Such an unseemly technique...but your mahstion presence is quite impressive."

"That's enough, apostle." Isair retorted, nimbly adjusting Faewyn's weapon into a spear, "If you wish to speak then tell us: what have you done to princess Rosaline and Faewyn's parents?"

"Questions, is it?" Velin inquired calmly, "You're one wrong move away from your demise yet you concern yourselves with such trivial things?" though his expression was as indifferent as always, the apostle appeared amused by this, "Oh, you are amusing little beings. Very well, then. I shall answer your questions..."

Within her mind, Faewyn held her breath in anticipation.

"...if you answer mine."

Isair's eyes narrowed in suspicion, "To what end?" he inquired sharply, "A moment ago you would have killed us without as much as an introduction, why do you now wish to parley?"

The apostle shrugged, "For my entertainment, for my curiosity and out of a mild interest in your abilities." he replied, "Make no mistake: I still have every intention of claiming your lives, but since you've been so entertaining thus far, I thought I'd humor you for a bit." the hint of teal in his hair remained ever visible, "We take turns asking questions. When one party refuses to answer this little game ends and should either of you show signs of hostility I shall interpret it in a similar manner. Now, seeing as how I just answered a questions of yours...it is my turn." his eyes focused on Isair's, seemingly intent not on peering at the fael but the girl behind him, "What makes you think that I would know anything about these parents you mentioned?"

"Because..."

"Fay, are you sure about this?" Reece interrupted telepathically, his body still on full alert for any trickery from Velin's side, "There's no telling what this creep is after and no way we can confirm or deny anything he says, or even if he knows what we want to know."

"I agree that this is risky." Sieglinde concurred, "But still...this man is obviously part of the same group that abducted princess Rosaline. If we pose our questions carefully, we may gain valuable insight into their plans."

"I-I've got to try, Reece." Faewyn replied, "Ae-" she corrected herself in mid-thought, realizing that the ex-priest's name would not support her case, "I've heard a rumor that Thylonstus personally passes judgment on those who have committed serious crimes in Carn and...this-this person is an apostle of Thylonstus, right? If anyone would know it's him, so please..." her voice took up a pleading tone, "I've at least got to try..."

"Well...alright." Reece replied, still clearly unsatisfied, "But if this guy tries anything I'll break this little chat up. Let's just get this over with."

"Right."

"Lin and Verdance Ayre were conducting research into the tradition of ritual sacrifice in Carn." Isair said at last, "As you no doubt know, this is a capital crime under Carn law and they have not been heard of since. The priesthood of Thylonstus is the most logical culprit, and as a servant of the priesthood it seems a fair assumption that you would know something of this incident."

"I see." Velin replied impassively, "Though as an aside: I am a servant of Thylonstus, not his priesthood. Not that this would make much difference for you." he shrugged, "Your question."

"What have you done to princess Rosaline and Faewyn's parents?"

The apostle quirked an eyebrow, "That is really two questions." he remarked, "I shall tolerate this once, but please respect the rules of this game in the future. All I know of the sacrifice is that she was reclaimed on order of the priesthood and is currently being held prisoner within the capital. What purpose this serves I can only imagine, but for the moment we are simply keeping her alive. As for the other two you mentioned...I've never heard of them." Faewyn's expectations plummeted at the statement, "The punishment of lawbreakers is a task appointed to the priesthood; as an apostle I am not part of - or privy to - the particulars of this process beyond the capture of criminals...or execution, as the case may be. Next question." his blue eyes pierced through Faewyn once more, causing the girl to reel back slightly within her mind. "What is your interest in the sacrifice?"

"She-" Isair's calm and collected voice was suddenly usurped by Faewyn's far less tranquil one, "She's my friend." Faewyn replied, a newfound fire burning in her eyes as she returned Velin's stare, her hands clenching the weapon far tighter than before, "And she's got a name: Rosaline. She's not your 'sacrifice' anymore so stop-stop calling her that!"

"Such conviction." the apostle remarked, "And for a little girl you couldn't have known for more than a few months no less. Fascinating...truly fascinating. Very well then; your turn."

"Have you ever loved anyone other than yourself?"

Velin's confidence seemed momentarily shaken by the question, posed not by the fael but his host instead. Reece seemed equally surprised, but held his tongue. "That question is completely irrational." the apostle replied at last, still not quite at his previous level of confidence, "Why would you want to know such a thing?"

"Because you were surprised when I asked you not to call Rosaline 'sacrifice'." the girl explained, "You concealed it then, but your reaction just now proves it. If you had ever had a beloved friend, if you had ever had anyone you value enough to risk your own life for, you would have known what I was feeling but you don't." inside her chest, Faewyn's heart was beating at a rapid rate, but she kept up a strong facade.

"I see you know this game better than your fael, miss Ayre." Velin grit out, the teal in his hair now almost completely replaced by his usual gray, "Though given that deduction I'm not sure you need my answer anymore. But yes, you are correct. I have never formed a bond like the one you described. I have allies, some more useful than others, and I have enemies, but if this is how you define 'love' and 'friendship' then I have yet to obtain neither, nor do I see the need to. Now for my question-"

"You already posed it." Faewyn interrupted, her voice now a lot steadier than before, "You asked why I wanted to know and I told you. This means that it's my turn again."

She was playing with fire and she knew it, but Faewyn also knew that letting Velin call the shots in this game would not yield the answers she wanted. For a moment, it looked like the apostle was about to attack, a threatening tinge of red appearing in his hair, but finally he nodded, "Go on, then."

"Why did you abduct princess Juliet?"

Before Velin could respond, a piercing shriek sliced through the engine room, the apostle immediately tensing at the sound.

"It seems that we shall have to call this game off for the time being." he announced, "Enjoy the brief moment of life this has granted you; I assure you that it will not last long. Farewell."

With that, the apostle disappeared in a blur of motion once more, but this time his destination was the door he came from. He wasn't the only one, however.

"Hold it!" Reece called, barring the path as he pointed his glaive at Velin, who was forced to break out of his dash to avoid being impaled, "I'm not letting you walk out without answering that question."

"Arrogant fool."

There was no time to react. Just one moment where Reece stood tall, blocking the apostle's path with his weapon, and another where the soldier was slumped over, a mixture of pain and surprise etched on his face as his eyes swiveled to the searing-hot claws embedded in his stomach, "I..." the soldier's words abandoned him, a volley of blood escaping his mouth instead as he slumped onto the stairs, the apostle coldly kicking him aside.

"Reece!"

The sight in front of her had completely wiped out Faewyn's moment of triumph, tears streaming down her cheeks as she rushed over to catch her friend in mid-fall.

"You were lucky." Velin remarked over his shoulder, "It seems your fael switched in at the last moment. Perhaps next time you will know better than to try my patience."

Faewyn blinked, staring at the person in her arms. Only then did she notice that its hair was not blonde but a firey red, the eyes an eerie, misty gray as they turned to meet the girl's, "Not to worry..." Sieglinde managed, "Reece will pull through and I...I will recover with time. Isair, if you please..."

"Of course." the fael replied, once again taking over Faewyn's body and placing a hand on Sieglinde's wound, green wionus flowing from his fingers into the gaping hole left by Velin's attack, "Faewyn, we should take Reece to safety. Sieglinde will need time to recover, and my powers will be drained by this procedure." he observed his right arm, now gone from the elbow down, with a grim expression, "That apostle was toying with us this far, but if he should strike at full force when we are this weakened..." he paused, "We should let the others know about our situation."

"Right." Faewyn was still worried, but having a task to perform always made things a bit easier, so she did her best to focus on a general broadcast to her friends - something with which she had no practice with - "Can-can anyone hear me?" Faewyn's mindvoice sounded insecure, even to herself, "I...I and Reece got attacked by an apostle in the engine room. We've made it for now, but Reece is hurt and our faels took a big hit. If that guy comes back, I..." she trailed off, trying to gather her thoughts, "Look, could someone please answer me? Anyone?"

parallelzero
November 14th, 2007, 07:14 AM
OOC: Don't worry, I'm not going to let this die! Although, in retrospect, trying to get a post in during math class probably isn't that great of an idea... Ah well, who needs math? xD

"I'm afraid I can't let you do that." A monotonous male voice boomed only moments before Adela fired the weapon which would surely kill Kyra. The shot went off, but was absorbed by a dation portal, the shot flying off somewhere in which it would cause no harm. "It seems fate has conspired for us to meet again, Reid Davies. It's unfortunate that I won't be able to kill you at the moment, although I try not to hit girls anyways."

Reid clenched his teeth as he gripped his bow once more, albeit forgetting Mistral's body was still dominant. "Cress! Where are you!? What did you do with Rosaline?" The voice was all too familiar, and the emotions overcoming his will to scold Adela and Jeckt for using that gun. He never had any intention of killing them, as obscene as they were. Silencing them would have been enough.

"Actually, that's why I'm here. Catch." Cress stepped out of another dation portal before Reid, and threw a bag at him. Reid cautiously glanced at the contents, and realized they were Rosaline's belongings, her flute included. The bag was also lined with her feathers. "She won't be needing that any longer. She belongs to the Padre now." There was something about his voice that appeared to be asking for help. Cress proceeded to go pick up the wounded Kyra, casting Adela and Jeckt a glance of disgust. That weapon, the Padre had wounded him with one only an hour or two prior, and already was he whipped. He couldn't possibly resist the Padre alone, that's why he needed the others. And, that THING he created, it's power surpassed the capacity of even Velin.

"Velin, Arturo, you've been ordered to retreat. Be... cautious when you arrive back at HQ, the Padre is execuring a plot against us." Cress used the thoughtspeech of an apostle to contact the others, unknowing that it broadcasted on the same frequency of the fael thoughtspeech. With that said, Cress, Kyra's body in hand, entered the black dation portal that opened behind him, Kira following afterwards.

-----------

"Ah, this is quite unfortunate. It seems I must take my leave." Arturo addressed Aertan briefly, after dodging the sword swing, before disappearing in a puff of smoke.

-----------

"You, Kira, by the order of the Padre, are to be terminated, as your blood is the only thing that may revive your sister." A lifeless female voice announced from the shadows as Kira stepped back out of the portal onto the ground of the HQ planning room. She didn't have time to react as a grey blade, presumably consisting of lionus and dation, spead at the girl's neck, severing it instantly. "Cress, place Kyra in the pool of blood."

Cress did as he was told, although trying hard to keep himself from throwing up. This thing... this girl... She was like a doll, a pawn. She had no real emotion, and she didn't know right from wrong. Kyra's body absorbed the blood, and the wounds healed themselves instantly, although she remained asleep. Arturo arrived just in time to see this spectacle, and moved to Cress' side.

Loki
November 14th, 2007, 04:29 PM
Villa frowned when she heard Cress' voice in her mind. It made her want to cry, the tone it held as he told them of Padre. She'd never really known him. Or maybe she had. She didn't remember. But she knew that he was the one who thought up all the crazy experiments. They wouldn't miss her if she didn't show up for a few minutes more. She wanted to succeed in this mission. That was her task. She was technically still on her mission, since she failed in completing it. So, it was completely unrelated to the fifth's mission. Shaking her head, Villa knew this was a wrong philosophy. She'd be punished for leaving without permission. She wasn't as skilled as the first, she wasn't as bold as the seventh, and she didn't have a killer-instinct like the fifth. She didn't even know how to get around, like the third and fourth.

"I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry..." Villa murmured in a constant chant under her breath as she fumbled with the drawstring on an empty black sack, "Sorry sorry sorry...." As she opened the little bag, she stared around herself with fear dancing in her wide eyes. She didn't want to use her mahstion. It would attract the attention of the other apostles. But she couldn't just leave the girl to die. Villa couldn't kill people, no matter what. Placing the bag on the ground in front of Alicel's limp feet that barely brushed the floor, Villa strengthened the shackles that held the girl to the wall of the ship with a coating of Lionus, and then capped it off with more Eation, trapping the Lionus inside.

"Sorry sorry..." Villa continued to mumble as she stood and took a step back, holding her hands out in front of her, arms rigid and palms toward Alicel, her fingers forming a triangle. She moved her mouth to form words but no sound came out, as a triangle of Lionus dashed out from her hands and reflected off of Alicel's forehead and into the black bag, filling it up until it looked as if it might burst. When the last of the Lionus had been stuffed inside, the extras floating about in the air pulled the drawstring shut, and evaporated into the air.

Licking her thumb, Villa wrote letters of Eation on the wall beside Alicel saying, 'I'd like the bag back please. Surely we'll meet again, so please return it then.'

Villa paused and added in very small print, 'sorry'.

Brushing her hand over the text to imprint it in the wall, Villa smiled and stretched out her angular wings, the UnderGround machine-like joints jumping into action as a waxy and bubbly film grew between them. Splashing in the puddles that had been created by Alicel's mahstion, Villa cast one look back at Alicel and managed a small smile before she twisted off the airship.

"I remember you now."

- + -

Geote howled in anger and frustration when Arturo disappeared, Aertan holding a hand against his right ear as Geote waved about, beating his fist into a nearby wall. Haeon't seemed rather relieved, ignoring Geote to the fullest as she picked up the discarded sword. Working together, she and Aertan took it apart into two seperate swords, before Geote opened his mouth wide and threw his fingers back, Haeon't dropping the swords down his throat like the traditional circus act.

Rubbing his decapacitated arm in discomfort, Aertan chewed on the inside of his lower lip as he decided it'd be a good idea to see what had happened to everyone else. He knew the exact location of only two people; Reid and Adela, who were on deck.

But Aertan was in no doubt that Reid would make sure that no harm came to Adela, and if Reid was wounded, then Adela could tend to it. That left Faewyn, Alicel, and that other guy, who was most likely with Faewyn. But that wasn't necessarily the case. Aertan pondered over who he should look for. However, Haeon't reasoned that whoever he found first, he found first. It didn't matter who he was looking for, it mattered as to who he found. This was a good point, so Aertan tried to bring his mind off of it. He was somewhat uncomfortable that the only thing that had happened to him was getting a little wet from Arturo's mahstion.

He hadn't forgotten who he was. And he certainly couldn't forget who they were. So leaving practically unscathed... Aertan ran a hand through his hair as he over analyzed things, leaving strands of his crimson bangs dotting his white hair.

"Where is everyone?" Aertan wondered as he headed in the direction opposite where he'd decided both Reid and Adela were.

- + -

"Woah!!" Both Xaviae and Jeckt shouted in surprise when the grassy ground beneath their feet began to tremble violently. Xaviae shot Jeckt a dirty look when they'd both recovered from the initial shock, and Jeckt smirked. Standing next to Jeckt and grasping the chains lightly was a transparent girl, her short teal hair cut into a layered bob, and her long bangs clipped away from her eyes. She stared at Xaviae with a wide gaze, and the fael looked down to see a group of faceless children around the age of the girl surrounding him.

"Where are your wings?"

Adela lowered the gun, staring at the spot where the apostle once was. Breathing hard, she swallowed the lump in her throat and stared determinedly away from Reid. Putting the mahstion gun back into her bag, she grimaced and tried to remember what had happened before the apostles. She could barely even think of it, let alone envision it. And it hardly put her at ease in this moment. Gripping the strap of her bag, Adela blinked to contain tears.

The children disappeared, and Xaviae stood in the rain, staring at the little girl who was still clinging to Jeckt.

“Who are you?” She finally asked defiantly, her brow furrowed and her mouth formed into a small frown.

Jeckt laughed when a pained look crossed Xaviae’s face, “See?!” He shouted at Xaviae, “She doesn’t even know who you are!! It’s been thirteen years, you good-for-nothing plufael. What have you done for Princess? Let’s see! You did nothing to get back at the losers who made fun of her. Nothing to get revenge on the people who made fun of her because it’s practically impossible to see her wings. You stood by when the those Tealian-Morons criticized her for her age and stuck her with crap missions. And now, you’re going to leave her to that kid, who’s obviously got more than one girl on his hands. Hm. I don’t know, Mr. I’m-A-Plufael, you’re not doing your job very well.”

Xaviae frowned more deeply, “You made her get revenge by playing pranks. Cruel pranks that could’ve killed people.”

“I couldn’t have made her do it,” Jeckt crooned, “If she wasn’t willing to in the first place. I just…” He paused and took a moment to think, mocking Xaviae with a contemplative face, “Gave her a little push. You saw it. I didn’t do anything, to make her shoot that apostle.”

“She wouldn’t have shot if you hadn’t brought her here!” Xaviae yelled, pointing accusingly at the little girl who shrunk back.

“It wasn’t my intention.” Jeckt said, ‘liar’ written all over his face as he yanked an arm against the chain to no effect.

“You cheated.” Xaviae said, making sure that Adela, who was pressing a cold hand to her forehead to cool her burning forehead, “You lied to her, made sure that she was never happy enough to lock you away, fed on her insecurities and lack of self-confidence. You even told her that you were her plufael when she first came. You made her think that there was nothing wrong with this world.”

“And there wasn’t. Princess chose by herself. Keep talking, plufael,” Jeckt’s sinister smirk turned into a self-satisfied smile, “The gun is sitting in her bag, and the only hope you have of becoming her plufael again is a sitting duck, gaping at a bag like some kind of idiot.”

Adela whipped around and stared at Reid like he was a time bomb, clicking off the seconds faster than seconds came and went.

“Liar.” Xaviae replied boldly, “If she doesn’t want to do it, then she wouldn’t, no matter how much you pushed her. She can’t fall off if there’s no ledge.”

Jeckt cackled with mirth, “And you’re implying that you know where the ledge is?! You, who’ve stood in the dark for the past thirteen years, would know what she would, or wouldn’t do? Think about it. What just happened? What’s happening, right now? What exactly, is in Reid’s hands?”

Adela let go of the cream colored strap and felt around her pocket for the necklace. When she felt the sharp points of the butterfly’s wings, she tightened her grasp on it. The whole point of their mission was to get Juliet back. And if Rosaline was gone too, then it was only natural that they’d go after her too.

“Insecurities.” Jeckt said, calming down after his laughing fit, “She’s riddled with them. A single one can give me the opportunity to reach into that bag and shoot him dead. And don’t even talk to me about Mistral. She could take the first few bullets, but she’d die long before I ran out of shots. Adela doesn’t need to do anything.”

“Shut up!!!” Xaviae snarled, whipping his arm across the air in front of him.

“Stop it!” The little girl shrieked, standing in front of Jeckt and directly in the path of the whirling blast of Dation. This move caused both negafael and plufael to yell out, but when the smoke from the blast cleared, Jeckt was unscathed, Xaviae’s eyes wide with fear, and the girl nowhere to be found.

“Where….” Adela blinked, no longer looking distressed and pulling her hand out of her coat pocket to find that the thing that was digging into her palm was a gold necklace, “Where am I?”

She peered over her shoulder at Reid curiously, not even noticing the fact that he was spattered with blood, or that there were pools of the crimson liquid all about, "Who are you?" She asked with innocently wide eyes.

Alter Ego
November 15th, 2007, 03:57 AM
Faewyn sighed at the continuously mute response to her intended, deciding that trying anymore would not do her good. Quite clearly, she'd need Isair's help with this telepathy stuff, but with the fael's currently weakened condition, she didn't want to bother.

It was then that the foreign psychic message brushed against her mind. Though the voice chilled her to say the least, the message itself was a relief. The apostles were retreating, and right now that was the only thing about it that the girl cared about.

"Thank goodness..." Faewyn mumbled in relief, her body finally relaxing, "Reece, we did it! They're retreating!"

"Sounds...more like something else did it for us..." the soldier wheezed reply, giving her a tired smile in return. Sieglinde may have taken the brunt of the blow, but his stomach still bore a burn mark, as did the side of his throat that Velin's claws had scratched, and neither was particularly pleasant, "Anyway, we should..." he began fumbling out of Faewyn's grip, rising to his feet in a slightly shaky manner, "...we should find the others, and-ergh!" Reece winced as a sharp pain sprang from the burn on his stomach, causing him to falter and nearly lose his balance.

"Reece." his friend said in a worried tone, rushing to support him, "You-you shouldn't be moving. Look, just wait here and I'll get someone to-"

"Nonsense." the soldier replied in a surprisingly harsh tone, but seeing Faewyn's expression it softened to his usual manner, "I'm fine, Fay, I'm fine. I've marched with injuries a lot worse than this. I'll be fine." he straggled towards the stairs up, stubbornly maintaining his balance with aid from the railing, even as the girl followed him with an anxious expression on her face.

"So where to now, then?" Reece inquired, stubbornly ignoring the worried glances that his companion kept giving him, "Are we going to check up on those two lovebirds up on the deck or what?"

"No." Faewyn replied, "We're going to the infirmary, Reece."

"Wha-look, Fay, I told you I'm fine." the soldier persisted, "I'm a Fionus user, remember? There's no need to fuss over a few burns, I'm doing just-"

"Stop it!"

"But-"

"I said stop it!"

Reece was momentarily silenced, unable to find a single word as he stared at the stream of tears running down Faewyn's face, her thin frame trembling between the sobs, "Fay, I didn't mean-"

"Please...just, just stop." the girl persisted, "Stop acting like you're not hurt, stop trying to make feel better, just stop it!" she glared at him from between the tears, "You could have died back there. Sieglinde nearly did! How can you just smile like nothing happened?!"

"Look, Fay... didn't mean it like that, I'm sorry I-"

"There you go again!" Faewyn thundered, "You-you're always like that, always charging into danger with all those big words about protecting people you care about and dying for the cause of justice! Always acting like nothing is any trouble! Have you, even once, stopped to consider the feelings of those people?!"

The soldier was absolutely speechless. They had known each others for years, but not once had he heard Faewyn speak so harshly and with such anger; it was like she wasn't even the same person.

"Do you have any idea of how worried I was just now?! Do you have any idea of what it feels like when someone you care about puts their life on the line for you?! When you know that if something happens it will all be your fault?! That someone you care about suffers because of your weakness?!" Faewyn's body still trembled, but it wasn't sorrow anymore; no, this was anger, anger she had locked away and thought that she'd never see again, "You haven't, have you?! It's all just one big epic adventure for you! Knight in shining armor saves the day! You want to be the hero?! Fine, but don't expect me to keep playing damsel in distress for you! I'm not a kid anymore, Reece! I don't need you to fight my battles for me, or tell me what I should do, or-or deciding who I should and shouldn't be friends with! Just..." she sighed, turning her back to the dumbstruck soldier, "...just leave me alone for a while. You can go after Reid or whoever, just...leave me alone."

With that, Faewyn marched off without really watching where she was going. Her conscience kept telling her that this was wrong, that she was no better for leaving her friend alone in such a state, but right now a far more persuasive one was telling her that turning back now would be inexcusable. She had a vague idea that the common room was somewhere in the general direction she was going, and odds were that that was the place where people would start gathering. Right now, she just didn't have the energy to search for them.

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

Velin remained silent.

In itself, this was nothing new, but the situation in the first apostle's mind was something quite different as she watched the gruesome revival ritual playing out in front of his eyes. He had seen death before, he had seen blood, gore and agony far worse than this before, so why...why was it so hard for him to watch? Why did he have to force his gaze not to stray away from the sight of Kira's head being cut off? Granted, she had been a reliable ally, but even those had to be sacrificed from time to time. Why should this one be any different? And why...why couldn't he get that little girl off hís mind?

'Have you ever loved anyone other than yourself?'

Such a childish question. Why should he need to attach himself to another in such a fashion? Sooner or later you'd have to let go. You always had to let go, he had embraced this fact a long time ago, so why did that question bother him so much? The first apostle didn't know the answer to this, and it irked him, but one thing he did know.

The one responsible for this...he would see them dead before this was over.

parallelzero
November 19th, 2007, 03:45 PM
OOC: Short post, crappy post, but good considering I have a block. XD

"Er... Mistral?" Reid spoke to his fael mentally after Adela questioned his identity. He had no idea what had just happened, especially in regards to the apostles. But, Adela's sudden amnesia was an immediate cause for concern. What had brought it on? Some kind of event that reminded her of a childhood trauma, perhaps?

"Yes, I'm aware. I sensed some sort of disturbance a few moments ago, and upon inspecting her mind I found myself amidst a large forest. Whatever is going on, it's something we can't help. I'd suggest just dragging her along until things have worked themselves out." She sounded calm, but something was terribly wrong going on in Adela's mind, and Mistral was aware.

Reid sighed and took Adela's hand, Rosaline's things in the other. The boat had finally docked, and a soft snow began to fall over the wharf. The land was all white, the air bitterly cold, and Reid was still dressed in his damp, summer clothes. "I'm your friend, Reid. And we're on a trip. So, uh... just come with me, okay?" He said as he dragged her down the wooden plank to the dock, only to slip and land face first into a pile of snow.

Smooth, and nice excuse.

"Shut up."

---------

"You are hereby placed under arrest, Velin Dahn." The emotionless, doll-like voice spoke again, before stepping out of the shadows. Cress looked away as the girl's appearance came into view. She was nearly the spitting image of Rosaline, with a few key differences. The navy blue hair that was one of Rosaline's key features was now black, while her eyes were pure white, with the pupils extremely small, that provided a lifeless look. Her wings, once lined with beautiful white feathers, were now a skeleton of what they once were, as if someone had taken the time to pluck ever last feather, were closed behind her. A single black, spiral horn like that of a unicorn stuck out five inches from her forehead, which had a white lace ribbon tied around the base of it. Other than that, her body didn't seem that deformed, although there was a chance that some dark, mutilated secrets lied beneath her lacey, ribbony, white gothic lolita dress that revealed her shoulders and fell down past her feet so that the dress dragged behind her."For conspiring against the Padre, you shall be contained in cell 765. If you refuse, I have been requested to use force."

"I wouldn't try resisting." Cress whispered into Velin's ear. "The bastard made her out of the two princesses without the permission of the King. That thing, that marionette of a girl, she has no soul, and she has more power than even you."

He snapped back up as the girl addressed him once more. "Cress, do not forget your place. You have been charged with my well being, after all."

"...Yes milady Cressida..."

Loki
November 19th, 2007, 07:02 PM
"Reid?" Adela asked with a smile spreading across her face, "I don't know how you can be my friend, since I don't remember ever meeting you, but alright. Where are we going? Are we already there, or what?"

But when Reid slipped and fell face first into the snow, Adela raised an eyebrow and stuck out a hand to help him up, "You're soaking wet! Aren't you cold?"

Inside her mind, a large argument ensued between Xaviae and Jeckt, both of them shouting at the top of their lungs and accusing the other of making the young girl who contained Adela's relationship memories disappear.

"YOUR THE ONE WHO FIRED THE BLAST-"

"IT'S NOT LIKE I WAS AIMING AT HER!! IF YOU HADN'T-"

As their arguments overlapped and both became more frenzied with worry and frustration, a small sigh silenced them both. A young boy sat in a wooden plank swing that hung in a tree. Neither Xaviae, nor Jeckt remembered the prescence of this swing, but Jeckt struggled against his chains with renewed strength when he saw what was sitting in the boy's lap.

"GIVE ME THAT CRYSTAL BALL!!" Jeckt shouted, changing the direction of his vent of anger.

The boy seemed highly unfazed and simply raised an eyebrow, infuriating Jeckt even more as the small boy sighed sadly again, "You want to get her back, don't you?" Jeckt and Xaviae silenced themselves with a new interest in the boy, "Well... I don't know where she went... but I don't think your mediocre powers could hit her. She probably went to the Black Pool, since she's a sissy. Can't get across the Black Pool with Dation though.... You'll just melt right in and disappear forever... It'd be rather nice without you guys though, you're rather loud."

"SHUT YOUR-"

"No!" Xaviae silenced Jeckt with a chain, and said, "Where- Where is the Black Pool?"

The boy, no more than a third of Xaviae's height, stared at Xaviae piteously, "You... don't know where it is?"

"WHY YOU-"

"No, we don't!" Jeckt interjected sweetly, "Please, if you would, show us the way?"

The boy leaned back and tossed the crystal ball up and down, with Jeckt's patience running thin rather fast.

"...Alright. I kind of miss her too. But I'm not going to help you get her back. I don't like the Black Pool. I don't really like the things that live in it, they're kind of gross." He said, hopping off of the swing and tossing the crystal ball up into the air one last time. It disappeared, and Jeckt let out a pitiful whimper when he saw his long-time tool disappear in thin air, "It's that way." He pointed toward the mother tree and when both Jeckt and Xaviae turned their gaze to the tree, the boy was gone when they'd turned their wary gazes back to him.

"THAT SNITCH!" Jeckt shouted, wriggling against the chains with frustration as Xaviae let his shoulders sag dejectedly.

"At least we know it's not permanent though..."

"Nothing's permanent." Jeckt rolled his eyes, still visibly annoyed, "But the problem is how we're supposed to deal with this. We can't. Get. Across. The water. We don't use anything other then Dation, smart one."

"I know that!!" Xaviae snapped, disappearing himself and leaving Jeckt as the only one left.

"Fine then." Jeckt grumbled under his breath, "Just leave me here! It's not like I care about my hard work being lost forever at all!"

Out of breath and with a tone of urgency, Xaviae skid to a stop when he realized he was standing on... nothing! It took him a moment to get over the initial surprise, but shook the idea out of his mind that he might fall as he caught sight of Mistral.

"Mistral!" Xaviae called, "Mistral, I-I acc-accidentally- mind you it was on accident! I..." Xaviae fumbled over his words as he tried to find the best way to describe what he'd done without giving a bad impression of himself, "I er... Well Adela's memories, the part that represents her relationships and stuff?? Uh, I... accidentally made her disappear, and -" Xaviae finally took a breath and wondered how he'd suddenly known what the Black Pool was, "We uh... need your help!"

Grasping the hem of Xaviae's shirt, the boy appeared again, staring up at Mistral with his large blue eyes as he said slowly, "Adela's memories are still yet retrievable. Indeed, her mind is a place where things have twisted upside down quite a few times. Xaviae here, is the real plufael. Jeckt is simply a very sly negafael. The young girl who represents Adela's memories was scared off by a fight between Xaviae and Jeckt. I wouldn't know how myself, but it seems she found a way across the Black Pool, and in the middle is an island. We call that the forgetting place. The Pool doesn't normally open a path for myself unless I begin to remember so many things for Adela that I simply cannot contain it all. So I choose what to remember, and what to forget, and cross a path that opens for this purpose exactly. I'd imagine that since she's there, the longer she stays, the less of Adela's memories we can recover. But as Xaviae explained, those bestowed with the Dation mahstion cannot cross it. It's like water, but there are many dangerous things that lurk in it, so falling in is not really something I would suggest. This is, of course, assuming that you are willing to assist us? I'm sure that anyone else could easily get across if they didn't use Dation, but I'd imagine that, being Reid's fael, Adela's memories will leave the forgetting place with less of a fight."

He smiled up at Mistral, "I hope we're not bothering you."

~ ~ ~

"Why am I not running into anyone?" Aertan snarled, getting more tense by the second. He just wanted their reaction to his unscathed appearance done and over with. And the longer he was kept waiting, the more absurd scenario's he thought of. Reactions he knew he wouldn't be presented with, and ridiculous idea's that were probably fabricated from nothing.

"Faewyn!" Aertan finally caught sight of her, and took a mental effort not to shrink back. She looked... angry, "Uh..." Aertan thought for a moment. What was the most appropriate thing to say after a battle? 'Got 'em good?'

No.

"Are you okay?" Aertan asked, then thinking directly of a better question, "Did you run into any apostles? The one I saw said that there were others. And, was Alicel with you? I haven't seen her since I got on board and I know she wasn't made for fighting."

~ ~ ~ ~

"No!" Villa cried boldly from her own spot in the shadows. She'd not been allowed inside the planning room normally, as she was never welcome at these meetings. She was just the experimental object, and not really quite important for anything else. But that certainly didn't mean she wasn't allowed to stand and listen.

"Please," Villa implored Cressida, seeing a fellow experiment in her instantly simply by her appearance, "The First- The First has done nothing! Nothing against the Padre, The First is our guidance! Nobody has kept us better in check than The First, so... so... don't..."

Villa had hardly known Kira, who died for Kyra, whom she barely knew as well. But it stung like a knife. Surely, surely, the girl who'd been revived would be sad to hear that the girl who had died was gone? Surely, the girl would be punished for failure? Velin, she'd practically never had the courage to speak to. He seemed to exude that air of authority and violence that Villa hated so much. But he was simply one of the people whom Villa could not see being punished for anything. She, who knew more than anyone about the punishments that the Padre could truly give. She, who feared every night that they would disown her for being such a failure, and leave her to face the world as a mutilated freak. What would happen to The First after his imprisonment? Would the Padre threaten him with various devices? Would he put The First through experiments, like he had with Villa herself? Experiments that he would never remember? Or have the burden of remembering every detail?

She swallowed the lump in her throat and looked down, squeezing her eyes shut for the lashes that were inevitably to come, "Don't." She managed to squeak out, nearly inaudible as she trembled, hiding her fingers that were still stained with Alicel's blood behind her back. It was only the shadows that kept the fact that Villa was soaked to the bone secret from the other apostles. Though surely the smell of Wation lingered in the air where it shouldn't have been exuded. Eation and Lionus being Villa's expertise.

Alter Ego
November 21st, 2007, 09:35 AM
Why does there have to be so much pain?

Above the islet, a storm was brewing. Heavy, black clouds loomed threateningly in the sky, fierce winds whipped the unprotected grass and the very air crackled with pent up-energy. Then, in the distance, a booming thunderclap erupted. On queue, the clouds burst open, obscuring the islet in a veil raindrops.

Crimson raindrops.

Faewyn's head jerked up ever so slightly as the voice caught her ears. Her ponytail had broken in all the commotion, stray strands spread across her face, a comforting curtain of teal between her and the rest of the world.

"Are you okay?" the girl's briefly froze at the question. Though not a muscle moved, one could almost hear something snap inside her.

Such hollow words...of course she wasn't okay. He wasn't okay either. No-one was okay. Everyone, every last being on this world was in pain. The only thing that differed was how much of it they showed.

Like a marionette operated by someone with an unsteady hand, her head jerked upwards, the sudden motion sending the strands in front of her face aside as a pair of eyes turned to meet Aertan's.

Bright green eyes, peering into the ex-priest as if they had never seen him before. The girl's face was still flushed with color, her recent tears painfully obvious, but the eyes were unyielding.

No, no-one was okay. There was only one way to be okay, the path that only one of her friends had gotten to take.

An ever so slight breeze blew around her right hand. Not Faewyn's usual chaotic kind of technique, though. No, this mahstion was perfectly focused, elegant as it swirled around her hand, creating the illusion of long, dagger-like claws at the tips of the fingers.

Only one sting, and then...no more pain. Near-instantaneous. Barely enough to register.

"And, was Alicel with you? I haven't seen her since I got on board and I know she wasn't made for fighting."

Faewyn's eyelids shut for a fraction of a second, opening to reveal a warm, brown color. The mahstion disappeared in an instant. "N-no..." the girl replied, her voice still clearly shaken, "I...I haven't seen her since we were at the dock." she took a deep breath in an attempt to calm herself, "I-I was with Reece, he's-" she bit her lip, firmly avoiding eye-contact, "He's got something to deal with on his own. We ran into an apostle, but we-we made it...sort of. Anyway, we should-" she stifled a small sob, still firmly set on brushing past the topic, "We should go and look for Alicel. Maybe-maybe she found some place safe where they couldn't find her?" the hope in her voice was feeble, but the girl clung to it all the same, duly taking point. But then, a thought struck her and she turned to address Aertan once more, "Oh, and I asked that apostle...about-about Juliet. I think...I think he was about to tell me something, but then we heard this terrible scream and he just escaped before answering." she hung her head slightly, "...sorry."

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

Velin was alarmed.

It wasn't the doll girl's proclamation that had caused it, nor Cress' warning or even the knowledge that this creature had the sacrifice inside of her. These things weren't altogether unexpected, though he had to admit that given the padre's outspoken distaste for apostles, it was ironic that he'd rely on one for his own coup. No, what really alarmed him was Villa. Hearing her speak up, especially in his defense, had been unexpected and a reckless risk to take for one of her standing, but it went deeper than that: Villa smelled of blood, and not only that, she was wet. Not just regularly wet either, no...she stank of wation, and if Velin could tell then Cressida certainly could. Didn't the failure have any idea of what danger she was placing herself in?

"Silence, Villa." the first thundered, quickly moving in between Villa and the doll girl, "Return to your exercises; this is none of your concern." his voice had been as cold and scolding as always, but Villa was most likely bright enough to spot the lack of red in his hair, not to mention note the fact that this was the first time he hadn't referred to her as 'failure', "As for you. I will of course comply to the order if the priesthood so decrees. However..." he stared unflinchingly into his adversary's eyes. The more attention he drew to himself, the less likely Cressida was to pick up on the obvious case of insubordination that was currently concealed behind his back, "To my knowledge, a decision of this magnitude would have to be approved by the high priests in a disciplinary hearing, and the hearing itself would require a week's notice before assembly, yet when I left a mere day ago, there was no word of such a thing, nor have I been asked to attend any such meeting. Perhaps you could explain this little detail for me? Certainly, the good padre does not consider himself above the laws of the great Thylonstus?" this was a crazy gamble, but Velin truly didn't fear any pain. They had tried to break him with that for ages and never succeeded. No, he would play this game to its fullest, maybe even obtain some much needed information in the process, he could only hope that the other apostles were paying attention and ready to make us of it, "After all, we are all His faithful servants, and it is regretful how often we forget that there are no hierarchies before Him."

Loki
November 21st, 2007, 06:03 PM
Aertan watched Faewyn carefully as she replied. His brow furrowed, not blind to her obvious distress. Had that apostle said something to her? But he could hardly focus on that. She hadn't even noticed that he was completely unscathed, and that bothered him more than if she'd told him off. Aertan chewed on the inside of of his lip as he tried to think of something to say. Something that wouldn't be completely insensitive, but... Well. One thing was for sure. Aertan wasn't about to ask about Reece. There was a reason that he wasn't with Faewyn, unlike Aertan had expected. There was a reason that Faewyn had left someone behind.

"Maybe." Aertan said, uncomfortably, trying to block out exactly what could've happened if Alicel's opponent had been on the same caliber as Arturo, "We should er... go find her then."

He was all ears however, when Faewyn began to speak about Juliet. He clenched his fist when she said that she'd heard nothing, but turned his gaze away at once, loosening his hand and swallowing, trying to get rid of the sour taste in his mouth. Taking a deep breath, Aertan managed to reply in an even tone.

"The apostle I fought." Aertan said burning his frustrated gaze into the wooden planks, as he ignored the white and crimson hair that was whipping and sticking to his face, "Said that..."

The thought that it was Carn who had ordered Juliet’s capture caused his teeth to lock together. He was confused. Angry. So they’d done all this and blamed it on Tealia? So he was here for no reason? Juliet had been fine in the first place? If she was fine, then why was she locked up? Aertan looked up at the next thought that crossed his mind. Why was he going to such lengths to save a girl he’d met only once?

“She’s fine.” Aertan managed to say, turning from Faewyn entirely and walking to his right, as Faewyn had come from before him, telling him that Alicel was nowhere along that path, “Anyway, since it’s raining, we should find everybody before they get sick, if they’re hurt and can’t move on their own or something.”

Aertan stopped in his tracks for a moment, turning his head towards where Faewyn was, but not looking directly at her. He took a breath to say something, but paused again, before closing his mouth and changing his mind. Finding out about her parents had never been his job in the first place. But he still felt somewhat guilty that Faewyn had thought of asking about Juliet, while her parents hadn’t crossed his mind even once during his and Arturo’s battle.

“Let’s go.”

ooc; I'll post Villa's side after David posts~

parallelzero
November 22nd, 2007, 05:42 PM
"Seriously. This relationship is NOT going to work out if I have to clean up all of your messes." Mistral sighed after listening to the pleas from within Adela's consciousness. "I'm not going to be some sort of house wife, you know. But I guess I owe you two a favor since Jeckt saved me after Maelstrom attacked me. Though I don't believe I'll be trusting him anymore." She sent the negafael a glare that would pierce his very soul. "Fine, but Reid and Maelstrom are coming too."

"Wait, wha-" Reid's sentence broke off as his body fell backwards onto the icy dock, his head banging off of the cold wood. However, no reaction towards pain could be seen, just a motionless body. Meanwhile, in Adela's head, Reid and Maelstrom appeared beside Mistral, completely bewildered. "...What did you do now?"

"She brought us into Adela's mind, idiot. Probably because she won't be able to take the dation by her lonesome, and she couldn't leave me alone in your body because I'd take it over, correct?" The dark haired Mistral, otherwise known as Maelstrom said. A large scar ran up her right cheek from her conflict with Mistral, and she was dressed in a white sundress now as opposed to the armor she had been wearing during their last encounter.

Mistral looked offended at the 'idiot' comment, and it wasn't even her she was addressing. "Right. So, let's get this over with!" She exclaimed as she grabbed the hands of the two and dragged them into the black water. It tingled with pain at first, but that eventually subsided after they got used to it. Along the way, the three were constantly bickering. They finally arrived at their destination, and as told, the girl was there. Mistral approached the girl without the other two, and extended her hand with a big smile. "Hey there, want to come back with us?"

--------

"You are mistaken. We are nothing but disposable pawns used for the purpose of Carn. If you were told of any paperwork, it was a lie." Still no emotion was present in her voice. She truly was inhuman, and it was pitiful. The girl exited the room, expecting Velin to follow. Before the man whom Cress hated had left, he decided to leave him some final words.

"Azyla went to Meredy to speak to the Queen on our behalf. If all goes well, we'll be free of this hellhole." He said quietly, for Cressida's ears were sharp. "I know you have your pride, but you're going to need to suck it up."

When all was said and done, Kyra began to stir in the bloody mess that was all that remained of her sister. "...What's going o-" Her eye caught sight of the decapitated head in the corner of the room, and she just froze. "K-k-k-kira!?" She shrieked, got to her feet, and backed away, only to trip over the corpse and land face first in another pool of blood. She got to her knees again, and wiped some of the blood off from around her eyes before crawling over the the corpse and beginning to bawl with all three eyes. "What... happened to you."

All Cress could do was watch as this unfolded. Everything used to seem clear about their kind, but not now. The people they were composed of. Were they people that had friends and family that loved them like Rosaline and Juliet did? Was this all right? Should they exist? He slowly walked about behind Kyra, and grabbed her in an attempt to move her away. Like a feral animal, the small girl clamped onto his arm with her teeth, tears still pouring from her eyes, while shouting the name of her deceased sister, and he dropped her in reaction. The poor soul quickly crawled back over to the headless corpse and buried her head into it's clothing as she continued to cry.

Arturo, without saying a word, left. He had things he needed to check into, and something he had to ensure.

Alter Ego
November 23rd, 2007, 11:58 AM
"Spoilsport."

Isair didn't dignify his sinister twin's comment with an answer, merely focusing harder on the links of vivid green that had appeared to replace their missing comrades on the chain, which he then tightened to bring the negafael's right hand back to full immobility. The storm had calmed, but a slow shower of crimson still fell from above, and the heavy clouds still hung above them.

"She invited me, you know." Typhoeus continued conversationally, "All I did was follow her wishes."

"Ones you planted in her head, negafael." Isair remarked, still not making eye contact.

"Perhaps." the white-haired one replied with the closest thing to a shrug he could manage from the cross, "But you know as well as I that they would never have taken root if she wasn't receptive towards them to begin with, plufael."

"Everyone has darkness in their heart." the plufael replied levelly, "But that does not make her 'receptive'. Need I remind you that it was Faewyn who threw you out just now?"

"Momentary confusion."

"Momentary clarity is more like it."

"I'll get my chance."

"And I'll be there to take it away from you."

"Oh, please." Typhoeus snorted, "Spare me the facade. You seem to be forgetting who's one arm short at the moment."

"And you seem to be forgetting who's chained down right now."

"Chains can be broken."

"Wounds can be healed."

"Persistent, aren't you?"

Isair gave a light shrug, "That's what Faewyn needs me to be."

His twin gave him a malicious little grin, "Maybe I'm the way Faewyn needs me to be too." he replied, "Ever though about that, saint-boy? She's drawn to suffering, she revels in it. Maybe my purpose, the one which you are so rudely keeping me from, is to satisfy that craving."

Isair's gaze was firmly nailed elsewhere, "Faewyn is opposed to suffering."

"But..." Typhoeus continued triumphantly, "She needs something to oppose, no?"

"..."

"Shall I take that as the silence of consent?"

"..."

Still maintaining his calm appearance, Isair let his gaze and attention wander from the gloating figure on the cross to the black clouds above. Though he would never admit to Typhoeus being right, this latest development troubled him. That possession attempt had been way too close for comfort, and had the ex-priest not mentioned Alicel, it may have been more than just close. First Rosaline's disappearance, then the disappointment of conversing with the apostle, the feeling of having let Reid down, then Reece crossing the line. There were simply too many disappointments. Too many. Even with his support, it was a miracle that the chains of Faewyn's heart had held up at all. Only one was truly solid right now; if that broke...a small frown on his face, his lips barely moving as they pronounced a tiny message, its contents lost under the breeze.

"Aertan...please don't upset her."

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

Faewyn hadn't missed the obvious disappointment in Aertan's manner, but when the ex-priest explained about having heard that Juliet was alright, the girl relaxed slightly. At this point, any good news - even news that didn't directly concern her - was good news.

"That...that's a relief." she replied, a thought suddenly striking her, "Oh, and Rosaline is alright too. That apostle said that they were just keeping her imprisoned right now, in...the apostle headquarters." she sighed, "That's not narrowing it down a lot, but at least we know that they're both alright for the moment. You know, I bet-" she paused, catching herself in mid-statement. There was no proof for her wild assumption that Carn was behind Juliet's abduction - pulled completely out of the blue, of course - and though the apostle's reaction suggested that she had struck gold, she didn't want to lead Aertan on with any hopes that could turn out false, "-no, never mind that." she added hastily, "I was just thinking out loud, that's all."

For a moment, it seemed like Aertan had had something to say too, but he seemed to have decided against it as well, and so the next few moments of searching were spent in awkward silence. It was then that it suddenly struck her how silly it was not to make any kind noise for their friend to locate them by.

"Alicel!" Faewyn called out tentatively, her voice still hoarse from the recent screaming and crying she had done but still carrying a fair way down the hall, "Where are you?! Are you okay?!"

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

"You're a girl after the good padre's heart, I see." Velin remarked, referring of course to Cressida's brutally blunt and straightforward answer. He honestly couldn't tell whether she was deceptive or just plain ignorant, but he knew very well that the padre was over-extending his authority on more than one count and most likely this creature hadn't been built to protest. How surprisingly ambitious of that sorry excuse for a human being. Cress' remark about 'sucking up his pride' was redundant; what kind of fool did he take him for? Velin had never been one to object unless he knew that he stood to gain from it. In this case, he obviously didn't. Inconvenient though it was, there were too many targets about - the biggest of which was still painted on Villa's forehead - and she wasn't about to let this upstart obliterate everything he had labored so carefully to set up. Being locked up didn't bother him; he could use the thinking time, and he had yet to find a cell that could contain his true power, but not getting to decide on how long that period would be was a bother. Still, not as big a bother as taking this creature on.

Without another word, the first apostle strode towards the exit, but he stopped in the doorway for the briefest of moments, not even turning to address the remaining occupants of the room.

"I trust that the other apostles will remember their duties in my absence."

There were many orders entrenched in those simple words: look after Kyra, find out what the heck the padre is up to and how he's doing it, and above all: don't get yourselves killed in the process. He just had to hope that they were bright enough to deduce all that since there was no opportunity for private conversation. Inconvenient though it was, he would have to rely on the failures for now.

Loki
November 23rd, 2007, 01:58 PM
ooc;; I'm so sorry that all my posts have been so messy. Dx;; I'm trying to wrap up all these things that I've started. </3 And this is by far the messiest post of all. I just gotta get all these things done and then we can get on with the RP. xD;;

ic;; Aertan glanced over his shoulder. He was curious as to what Faewyn had been planning on saying, but didn't press the issue, as he'd stopped himself from speaking what was on his mind as well. As the silence dragged on, Aertan could only think of his purpose. He knew for sure by now that he could care less for Rosaline's well-being. But what truly bothered Aertan was that he could feel the fact that he was starting to care less and less about Juliet. Thinking more practically with the idea that he'd only met her once or twice, and never actually spoken directly to her. He was snapped out of his reverie however, when Faewyn began to call Alicel's name. Pausing in thought, Aertan stared at the floor for a few minutes.

"Haeon't, Geote." Aertan stated, looking up at them both and nodding. The two hands stretched out and bent around corners, up and down stair cases, until Aertan was pulled roughly forward to his right, letting out an 'Ouch!' while he fell smack onto his face. He looked highly unamused when he sat up, muttering curse words under his breath before being dragged forward again.

"I'm coming, I'm coming!" Aertan snapped, trying to get to his feet as Geote continued to pull Aertan forwards in urgency, really only succeeding in sliding across the floor. Haeon't quickly came back however, and picked Aertan up by the collar, setting him on his feet before hesitating.

"Geote says he's found her." Haeon't's raspy voice came, "He says you should probably hurry it up."

Aertan furrowed his brow, massaging the spot where his right wing connected to his back, "What are you-"

He fell to the floor face-first again as Geote pulled again. But this time, Aertan stood quickly and turned to Faewyn, "Let's hurry."

Picking up his pace to a run to keep Geote from pulling on him again, Aertan only had to round a corner and open the door that led to one of the smaller decks to find exactly what he and Faewyn had been looking for. Stepping forward, Aertan pulled his foot back when he found that the whole deck was soaked in water, and started to go back around the corner to tell Faewyn to hurry. He decided against it though, thinking that it'd be better if she was unaware of this for even a second longer. He was vaguely aware that the water that was around her was a pinkish color, and that the wall she was thrown against had blood spattered over the spot where her back rested against it.

Though Aertan couldn't exactly find it in him to be terribly worried, he was hectic to make sure she was still, at the very least, alive.

"Haeon't, check a pulse." Aertan said, "Geote, what's keeping her chained to that wall?"

"Eation." Geote replied, reeling back and slamming his fist against the stubbornly hardened sand, "Fortified-with-Lionus." He said, speaking between attacks on the cuffs.

"She's just unconcious." Haeon't reported, withdrawing her clawed fingers from Alicel's neck. She noticed a small bag at Alicel's feet as Geote noticed the writing next to Alicel's head.

"Open it." Geote told Haeon't, and Haeon't pulled the drawstring bag open, releasing a great burst of Lionus that weaved itself into the holes on Alicel's torso.

"What the heck are you guys-" Aertan shouted, but when the Lionus disappeared, Alicel was quite fine, albeit a little bloody, while the extra Lionus burned itself into the wood at Alicel's feet. Aertan called Haeon't and Geote back as he knelt beside the second engraving.

'Till next time’ it said.

Bang. Aertan started when he heard the sudden noise, turning to see Alicel crumpled on the ground and bits of Eation and Lionus evaporating into the air.

~

Villa complied with Velin’s first order immediately, though she looked extremely disappointed. No matter what, she was still a failure, and she’d even failed in this. Villa had, however, succeeded in deciphering his second order. Even if she didn’t know that this was something she hadn’t failed at.

Staring at the place where Kira’s head should’ve once been, Villa stepped forward, feeling safer now that it was really only Cress, Kyra, and herself in the room.

Bending over to pick up Kira’s head, Villa walked as quietly as she could over to Kyra, before situating herself on her knees and using Lionus to heal the cut between Kira’s neck and head. Though the other apostle was no more alive then she’d been just a few seconds ago, Villa glanced at Kyra, who was still crying, and mumbled, “I’m sorry, that I can’t do more.”

~

Jeckt scoffed when Mistral glared at him, “It’s not my fault that you have to go save the girl. And of course, me lying to you was completely uncalled for, even though I’m a negafael-“

But it wasn’t as if anyone were listening to the one chained up to the mother tree.

The little girl looked up at Mistral with a tear-streaked and offended face, about to snap at her but then she saw Reid in the water, and glanced at Mistral quickly. As the little girl decided on who Mistral was, she grabbed the outstretched hand, and dragged Mistral back into the water, but this time, the whole pool parted for the little girl, showing that it was actually rather shallow for a lake. She ran, pulling Mistral behind her, and stopped abruptly in front of Reid.

“I know you.” She stated childishly, staring up at Reid with awe, “But I don’t want you to be here.” She glanced at the wall of black water, where human-like figures floated around, unable to penetrate the Dation, “Thank you for coming though. Maybe next time, I’ll meet you somewhere prettier.” Smiling, she closed her eyes and let go of Mistral’s hand, shutting Adela’s mind and sending Mistral, Maelstrom, and Reid back to Reid’s mind.

Meanwhile, Adela had been confused as to exactly what happened to Reid, and why he’d suddenly just conked out.

“Are you okay Reid?” Adela asked, a tone of urgency in her voice as she looked to see if the collision had caused any bleeding, “What happened?”




“So what memories did you pay?” A young boy on a swing that hung from a lone weeping willow asked a little girl who was picking flowers that grew around the single tree. She looked up and smiled.

“I didn’t really like it when that other girl kissed Reid.” She said, holding an armful of daffodils.

parallelzero
November 27th, 2007, 02:43 PM
OOC: For the record, I'm waiting for you two to hurry up with whatever the heck it is you're doing before I post again. XD Sorry for the delay once again. I've been having horrible connection luck lately. XD Anyways, Bell already knows this, but whenever we get around to Act III, it's going to take place 5 years later. Just wanted to make sure everyone is aware of that!

Alter Ego
November 28th, 2007, 03:28 AM
OOC: Five years?

o.o

Like, whoa...didn't see that one coming. x3 Anyways, sorry for the delay in posting: I've been sort of busy with fanfic reviews (and writing) lately, not to mention running around university info seminars. Oh well, posting time. ^0^

IC:

As word of Alicel reached her, Faewyn had no interjections to Aertan's request, immediately setting of into a sprint after the ex-priest who - in turn - was being hauled forward by his ghoulish faels. The girl's heart pounded with a mixture of fear and relief as she followed her guide. Relief over the fact that Alicel had been found, but fear over the condition she might have been in. What if she hadn't avoided the fray like Faewyn had thought? What if she was hurt? What if-what if she was-

'No!' Faewyn scolded herself firmly for the last thought, shaking her head in protest. She would not believe something like that that about her friend, not without proof. She refused! A bit more secure in her newfound conviction, Faewyn turned her full attention back to her surroundings just as they rounded yet another corner to face...

"Alicel!"

The girl had completely missed the scene with the bag, but there was no missing the disturbing amount of blood in the room, or the fact that Alicel was unconscious. At the sight, Faewyn practically collapsed next to her friend, seemingly oblivious to the fact that the floor was still soaking wet as she turned to inspect her friend's body, tears welling up in her eyes again.

"Alicel..." she mumbled, as if in trance. Not another, she couldn't possibly have lost another...what if-it was then that she felt something, a subtle motion in the body she was holding, was that...a pulse? Looking up with newfound hope, she turned to Aertan, "I she...she's alive, right?"

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

Meanwhile in the medical room of the ship, a solitary figure was locked in thought, his amber eyes fixed on the large bandage wrapped around the better part of the torso without really seeing it. His shirt had been removed for the procedure, and his weapon lay forgotten in the corner of the room.

"I must say..." interjected the voice of the doctor he had managed to haul out of hiding, attempting to make conversation as he inspected the cuts on his patient's neck, "You area very lucky man, Mr. Everard. Both of these wounds are mere inches away from critical spots, if either cut were any deeper, there might not have been anything that I could do."

Reece gave no reply at first, but noting the doctor's expectations he finally managed to respond, if somewhat lukewarmly, "Oh."

The doctor shook his head, "Not much fazes you, does it?" he remarked, "Well, whatever this technique you were subjected to is, my advice is to steer clear of anyone wielding it. I've never seen wounds like this; this doesn't just burn like regular Fionus, it lingers to undo any attempts at mahstion-based healing, though...you probably noticed that already."

"Yeah." Reece grimaced at the memory of the recent attempt at Lionus healing, which had resulted in the newly grown patches of skin immediately bursting into flames. He had been given some sort of painkiller, but even so the pain was excruciating. Strangely enough, it wasn't the wounds that bothered him, though, not the physical ones at least...

"Have you, even once, stopped to consider the feelings of those people?!"

Consider feelings? Those words...could they be true? Had what he thought of as heroism and helpfulness really been nothing more than a big ego trip? Had he been needlessly sheltering Faewyn when his intention had always been to protect her? Had he really been...inconsiderate? And Sieglinde...if it wasn't for Sieglinde, then...the wound on his stomach protested again, but the soldier willed himself to ignore it. This was nothing, this was absolutely nothing to what his recklessness had put the fael through. If Sieglinde didn't complain then he certainly had no right to. The doctor droned on, but his words were helplessly drowned beneath those from his memory, from a far more grizzled, old doctor he had become acquainted with long ago.

"You're a damn fool."

He remembered a searing pain, he remembered wishing for the wing to be removed, just to make the pain stop, he remembered a little girl with teal hair staring at his silent enduring of the torment with eyes full of wonder and admiration, and above all, he remembered the words she had whispered to him as she gave him a childish little pat on the head after the operation:

"I think you were very brave, mister."

Reece cast a dismal glance at a mirror located opposite of him, staring his reflection straight in the eye. His lips moved soundlessly, forming the words that he should have formed way back then:

No, not brave.

Just a damn fool.

Loki
November 28th, 2007, 03:04 PM
Aertan turned his gaze to Faewyn after he'd burned the words etched into the wood with Fionus, until it was just a blackened sooty . Nobody else needed to see that ominously foreshadowing scribble of Lionus. He glanced at Alicel warily before saying, "I haven't checked myself, but Haeon't says she's alive, and at this point, unharmed."

Aertan stood, and walked over to where the opened bag now lay piteously empty of it's contents. Picking it up, Aertan examined it silently, before crushing it in his hand, and watching one last tendril of Lionus fall out with as much energy as a dying dog. The tendril heaved itself up to Aertan's stump of a left hand and after touching it once, disappeared entirely. Scoffing, Aertan shoved the bag into his pocket and turned to Faewyn, snapping his fingers and brushing right past her as Haeon't and Geote lifted Alicel out of Faewyn's grasp.

"We should find everyone else." He said, before stopping at the doorway to wait for Faewyn.

ooc;; I'd say we've finished up. Unless AE's gotta do something, you can just assume that we're already at the deck or something, so we can get movin'. ^^;; Sorry for the hold-up. And the super short post. xD;;

Alter Ego
November 29th, 2007, 12:24 AM
OOC: Nope, I'm good. :3 Sorry for the full OOC, but with the discussion thread being locked up and all...well, just didn't want anyone waiting on my account. You can assume Reece having found his way up on deck too. I'd give an IC, but given that there's not really anything more to say right now, I don't think it would be worth it. D=

parallelzero
November 30th, 2007, 08:38 PM
"...What happened?" Reid muttered in reply as he got to his feet, eying the girl carefully. Well, it would make sense that she wouldn't have been conscious when it had all taken place. In the end, he decided against informing her of all the details. If needed, her faels would do the explaining anyways. "Just... don't listen to Jeckt anymore. He's an idiot." The the realm of faels, their subconsciousnesses, Mistral stuck her tongue out in the bound Jeckt's direction, as if she had manipulated Reid into saying what he had. The two truly were opposites, through and through. The group numbers finally increased as the rest of their merry band rejoined the ranks. "...Nice of you guys to show up." The brown haired boy murmured as he brought his right hand to his forehead, and buried his face in it. It was one of those days that just put him in a plain old bad mood, and the fact that he was ticked off shined brightly. "Faewyn, you lead. We don't have time to dilly dally around here, since they know our location." He grimaced, full well knowing this meant he wouldn't have an opportunity to get changed into warmer clothes. "You know the country, so you need to take us to where we need to go..."

OOC: Really short post, and I apologize. I don't want to touch on the apostles for a bit.

Alter Ego
December 4th, 2007, 11:11 AM
"I...oh, okay."

Faewyn had almost forgotten about their mission in all the commotion. After the relieving news that Alicel was alive and well, she had entertained the hope that maybe, maybe things would get more peaceful for a while, that they'd take a small pause to properly tend to their wounded and swap news, but one glance at Reid had been enough to crush that frail little hope. He was angry, she could tell, angry and disappointed.

Disappointed with her.

The girl hung her head ever so slightly as she disembarked the ship with the others behind her, the sound of boots striking cobbled pavement or the occasional pile of half-melted snow and the howl of the northern wind constituting the only sounds. This whole thing just felt wrong. She was home now, there was no mistaking the steep mountain tops and biting gale, she was with friends, so why...why couldn't she be happy? Faewyn risked only the briefest of glances at the others, not wanting them to spot her gloomy expression. She still couldn't bring herself to look at Reece, the soldier currently keeping the rear of the group, though she suspected that this was more for the wounds than any strategic reason. His expression was one of grim determination, his whole attention seemingly focused on the task at hand. Faewyn bit her lip, wishing to speak up in her usual manner but finding that she couldn't. Everyone seemed so...tense, so focused, and no matter how much she wanted to lighten up the oppressive mood, Faewyn just couldn't help the feeling that her usual brand of chit-chat wouldn't be appreciated.

'When...when did it get like this?' she pondered for herself as she navigated a path between the structures surrounding the docking bay. As was standard for Beta, the architecture was practical in the extreme, dominated by well-isolated stone structures with steep, reversed V-shaped roofs, designed to allow the snow to slide down before it reached roof-breaking volumes. Thick, metal pipes, the likes of which were embedded beneath the streets, snaking their ways across walls and into the pavement, the thermal energy radiating from them keeping the streets clear while the ever-so-slight tilt caused the excess water to slither down into the drains on the sides. There were so many things she would have liked to tell her friends, so many things that Reid should have known too - about the faels, the things Velin had said - but she just couldn't take the chance. What if Reid would get even angrier? What if he and Reece ended up in a fight and-

"Here now, what's this supposed to be, then?"

Faewyn was snapped out of her thoughts as the demanding male voice struck her eardrums, the girl's attention immediately snapping to the man in front of him. He was dressed in a thick, grey fur coat, with an equally thick hat of the same color residing on his head, a pair of heavy, black boots on his feet residing on the street as he maintained a casual pose. Between the tall collar of the coat and the flaps on each side of the hat, the man's features were almost completely obscured, save for the piercing blue eyes and the reddened nose, but Faewyn's mind immediately registered 'militia'. Sure enough, several other figures donning equally casual clothing - well, by Beta standards anyway - were located around the area. The Betan military had never been particularly big, and as such they had never had a thing for openly flaunting their allegiance either. Discretion was the better part of valor, after all.

Right until they pounced.

"Tealian soldiers, eh?" the man continued, taking a few steps forward as he gave the group a critical glance, "Some of you, at least, and armed to the teeth by the looks of you." his eyes narrowed, even as his hands remained casually stuffed in the pockets of his coat, "Well, out with it; what's your business here in Beta? If you really do represent the Tealian military then you should already know that you have no right to bear arms here. We may be a peaceful nation, but we don't take kindly to bands of armed hooligans traversing our streets."


OOC: Yeah, gonna' have to stop here. Do with the security guy as you please, official papers or whatever, I just thought it would be odd for a group this bizarre not to attract any attention whatsoever (and I needed a point to cut this post off at, so...).

parallelzero
December 7th, 2007, 12:12 PM
Reid rolled his eyes at the appearance of Beta's militia. This was unexpected, but not as unexpected as for the boy to be unprepared. "Reid Davies, Tealian Special Forces." The boy whipped his badge out of his front pocket and threw it at the man who appeared to be the leader, along with a stack of papers. The man gave him a look that implied he was questioning whether or not that was the truth. After all, Reid had no wings, and wingless were rare in any forces other than in the Underneath. "I'm sure you'll find these in order. We're only here to visit the home of our friend here, nothing more. No trouble will come of this." He was lying through his teeth, of course. He failed to relay the true nature of the mission, and he suspected they would be attacked by the apostles again while present in the country, so trouble most likely wouldn't be avoided. "However, if you feel you'd like to question these orders, I'm required to inform you ahead of time that I am permitted to use force within the borders of any country as per Section 4, Clause 5 of the International Defense Agreement signed by all nations in 85 Y.Z." With that said, Reid motioned to the rest of the group to keep moving, hoping this militia wasn't stupid enough to try and pursue them. As a final warning, Reid decided to speak up as he walked past them. "Remember, if anything were to happen to us, Tealia would be here in a snap. Last I checked, our forces GREATLY outnumber yours." He then walked up behind Faewyn and whispered into her ear. "Keep walking, I'll stay in the back in case they really DO try something."

Loki
December 7th, 2007, 07:44 PM
Aertan’s gaze was most likely that of an incredibly hostile and defensive look. Even he knew what kind of dark expression must’ve crossed his face when the soldier had referred to him as a hooligan. And a Tealian soldier. Having long calmed his mind earlier from being worried about the others doubting his loyalty due to him being completely unharmed, (nobody seemed to even notice,) Aertan had enough sense to paint a light look of indifference onto his face. The ex-priest found himself unable to find a place to put his gaze, as he didn’t want to stare at the Beta troops, nor did he want to look at the endless masses of snow. He finally glanced at Alicel’s limp figure for the first time since he’d told Haeon’t and Geote to pick her up. It was an interesting idea to ponder, as to why Reid had made no comment about Alicel, but Aertan wasn’t particularly looking forward to delay because of her anyway. It just seemed like she was just unconscious now, in no state of danger; Except for the danger of the accumulating annoyance that Aertan was suffering from. Why should he have to carry her about?

A pair of crimson eyes disappeared underneath Aertan’s eyelids as he let the smallest smirk grace his lips, hearing Reid vouch for their position in a way that really didn’t impress the priest. After all, one could certainly tell that Reid was just hardly a teenager, let alone an adult who could threaten others with the statement ‘I am permitted to use force’. Aertan opened his eyes again and kept a confused expression from surfacing as he thought about the principles about violence he’d been preached about on a daily basis when he was younger, reminding him of Tylonstus, which consequently brought his gaze to his left arm. He should’ve changed the bandages on his arm halfway to Beta. But, the Apostle attack had delayed that. Well, Aertan reasoned, looking away defiantly, it wasn’t important anyway. The stump of an arm hadn’t caused him any pain since the morning anyway.

Adela, who hadn't let herself ponder over Reid's words about Jeckt for very long before she was ushered off the ship, folded her arms. She grabbed Reid’s shoulder, pulling him back and stepping up to the plate herself.

“My sincerest apologies for his rude behavior.” Adela said with a fabricated voice that feigned remorse, her excellent acting skills when it came to being innocent and sweet being applied in the heaviest coatings as she tilted her head down, “I hope it won’t be a bother, for you to read the paperwork. We intend no harm here in Beta, so please forgive us for being armed,” She chimed, smiling as disarmingly as she could as she extracted her badge from the side pocket of her bag, “It’s essential that we are able to protect ourselves at all times. I hope it’s no trouble…?”

A little boy and girl watched the whole scene from inside Adela’s mind, and after Adela’s rather blunt and rude behavior toward Reid, the boy lifted his gaze up to the girl, who was turning a deep shade of red.

“…Way to be.” The boy said sarcastically, referring to both Adela’s rude attitude to Reid after he’d helped her retrieve her memories and the little girl’s overreaction that caused the whole scenario in the first place.

“I-I can’t help that she doesn’t remember what happened!” She retorted defensively, flushing even more as she stuck her nose up in the air.

Alter Ego
December 8th, 2007, 12:32 PM
"I see."

The officer's response to Reid's and Adela's combined assault was rather reminiscent of the air around him: calm and utterly frigid. Casting a quick glance at the documents and realizing, much like anyone who had dealt with bureaucracy for a longer period of time, that the accuracy of these documents was barely an issue; their wording and sheer mass kept the information content spread so thin and scattered so far that piecing it together on the spot was a futile endeavor. Instead, he focused on inspecting Reid's badge carefully while his cohorts slowly tightened their ranks in front of the advancing group. Just as Faewyn was afraid that it was all going to burst into conflict, however, the leader calmed his men with a simple hand gesture.

"It's alright." he said at last, walking back to the group, "Your story holds for now. However, I'm required to inform you that the International Defense Agreement you cited does not cover foreign agents undertaking any action that may be seen as compromising the national security of the country in question, including the perusing, copying, or obtaining of any documents of considerable military or political importance. Any such behavior will be interpreted as an open declaration of war on the sovereign nation of Beta, and under such circumstances any agreements concerning the withholding of specific documents -- ones which, I feel inclined to add, the nation of Carn has expressed keen interest in -- will be considered null and void." his face was mere inches from Reid's as he ended his speech, unceremoniously placing an object in the teenager's hand, "Your badge, Tealian Special Forces agent Reid Davies. I wish you a pleasant stay."

With that and another quick hand gesture, his henchmen moved back, allowing the group free passage. Faewyn still kept an eye on the officer, experiencing the uncomfortable sensation that the other was doing the same to her, and it wasn't until they had left the thick fur coat a good bit behind them that the girl finally managed to breathe out.

"That...was close." the girl said in a hushed voice, "We should do this fast. A lot of military people knew mama and I don't like the way he was looking at me." she gave an involuntary shudder, "I was really small back when we had officers checking in on the house, but if he does a background check he will figure it out and then we're in trouble. Come on." she quickened her pace, "It's just a little bit further and then we're...here."

With that, Faewyn came to a halt between one of the many houses lining the streets. On the outside, it didn't look that different from the others: just a pair of hexahedron-shaped blocks, a smaller one perched on a larger, with reverse-V roofs, but the sight didn't fail to illicit a nostalgic little smile from Faewyn as she stepped on the third of the small, wooden stairs leading up to the front door.

"Hasn't changed a bit..." she mumbled in a voice choked with emotion, but she soon snapped out from her reverie, realizing that the others were probably freezing, impatient, and not at all in the mood for her childhood reveries, "Oh, hold on..." she mumbled, fumbling around her pockets, "Just a moment...I've got something right here." smiling triumphantly, the girl procured a small metallic object from her pocket. It was a key, just a regular house key, the luster of its gray surface long since lost to age. Though it was obvious that it had been carried around for quite a while, it was equally obvious that it had been taken care of with great care. There was no sign of rust on the object, and as Faewyn pressed it into the keyhole, prodding it in for a while to dislodge the ice that had gathered inside of it, the lock gave a resounding click, the door it was attached to offering no resistance as the girl pushed it open, even as the hinges groaned at the inconvenience.

The inside of the house was dark and coated with dust and - not unsurprisingly - the light switch gave no reaction when Faewyn pushed it. No-one had occupied the house for a long time; it stood to reason that no-one would keep supplying electricity and water to it either. Faewyn didn't mind, though; she remembered. As soon as she had slipped out of her boots and felt the old floorboards beneath her feet, the memories came rushing back. It was like each and every plank was an old friend she had almost forgotten about, and she could practically see the interior in front of her as she wandered through the entry hall and into the darkened interior of the living room. The couch just slightly to the left of the center, overlooking the square-shaped wooden table and the fireplace in the wall, the bookcases one the left-hand wall, occupying every bit between itself and the large window at the middle of the wall, papa's armchair in the corner, the staircase up to their personal rooms, the kitchen on the right with its tiled floor...they were all right there in front of her, even though she remembered how all the furniture was covered beneath white sheets to protect it from dust, like so many ghosts out in the gloom.

Faewyn suddenly shook her head. No, she couldn't get sidetracked by memories now. This was a mission, an important one, and they didn't have time to spare for this sort of thing. Inwardly reprimanding herself for spacing off, Faewyn wandered over to the nearest window, pulling the curtains aside and allowing light to flood into the living room as she unlocked and opened the window to let some fresh air in. The place was dusty, a fact that was all the more evident in the daylight, but besides that she was pleased to note that everything was precisely in the order she had left it: tucked away beneath the protective sheets.

"Come on in!" pausing by the entrance of the kitchen where the next set of curtains lay in wait, "I'm just going to open up some windows and then I'll be right with you!"

OOC: HOMG, I did manage to retype this tonight after all. It's not as detailed as the original, but it should do the job. x3

parallelzero
December 10th, 2007, 01:24 PM
"She's opening windows in a place with this kind of climate?" Mistral spat rudely to nobody other than Reid. While so much different than the boy, it seemed faels shared some similarities with their hosts. Since Reid was cold, the fael girl was feeling a similar annoyance by the bitterly frigid air, enough so that Reid's inner mind had taken the form of a tundra. Like Reid, Mistral was apparently easily irritated when nature wasn't in her favor. Reid sneezed. While he was allergic to dust, and an inspection of the house provided evidence to that being the cause, there was the chance he had indeed caught a cold. The boy sighed, before snapping his fingers, allowing a light breeze to float through the house, lifting a good majority of the dust and replacing the old and stale smelling air.

Reid hadn't said anything when Adela had stepped in back when the militia had appeared, and he had said nothing to her since. What was he doing!? He was so confused. On one hand, he had promised Rosaline he would protect her, but he couldn't even do that! Then there was Adela, whom he was now contemplating his intentions with. Did he really feel anything, or was that just him being a fool and rushing in to something? Oh well, there was no point dwelling on it.

"Faewyn, we need to find what we're looking for and then we need to go to sleep." Reid announced to the whole group, although directed to the girl. "It wouldn't be smart to stay in one place for too long with those apostles aware of where we are. We're leaving in the morning."

-------

"We're attacking in the morning!?" Cress spat at Cressida, who just stared blankly at him. The entire group of apostles (Velin obviously excluded) had been summoned to the drawing room, where Cressida gave them their new orders as per the padre's request. The apostle boy grinned slightly. The stupid padre would be coming with them to evaluate the worth of each apostle. That would be the perfect time to strike, since he wasn't bringing any troops. He seemed to think Cressida would be adequate protection.

The big thing that worried Cress, however, was Kyra. Ever since her sister's death, she had been more quiet than usual, not even glancing at anyone. This kind of personality was dangerous, because there was no way to predict their next move...

Loki
December 10th, 2007, 03:40 PM
Villa stood quietly, listening with a wistful expression. It was unusual, as when she was assigned missions that didn't involve experiments, she was often found with a look of sheer terror, or dismay. Now, it seemed as if she didn't even hear that Cressida had said that the Padre would come as well. As if the fact that he was judging their value didn't even affect her. In all reality, it probably didn't. She wasn't exactly made for the purpose of this mission in the first place. When Cressida finished speaking, Cress spoke up, leaving Villa to contemplate her curiosity as to when the meeting would be over. There had been too many consecutive meetings, and remembering it all was starting to make Villa feel a little woozy.

Looking up, Villa's face was unnaturally blank. She'd never been very good at hiding her emotions, but now, she wanted something.

"If that is all," Villa began quietly, hiding her mouth behind the sleeves of her dress, "I have something I must attend to."

With that, she turned on her heel and exited the drawing room, her platinum hair floating lightly behind her. Somehow, the ethereal strands of white never caught in her bladed wings, which were currently releasing bits of pressurized air with a sharp hissing sound every time they moved. The wings slowly wafted up and down with her every step, and when she reached her destination, the blades stretched out to their full span before folding tightly to her back, all in the blink of an eye. Resting her fingertips on the doorknob, she paused to stare at her fingers, still caked in blood. She hadn't had the sense to wash up, and besides, most of it had already been washed away before it had a chance to dry. Speaking of Wation...

Villa lifted her gaze from her hand and sniffed the air. She smelled less like Wation now, which would be best, if she was to face the Padre. Turning the doorknob defiantly, the seventh apostle stared quietly into a room, who's purpose nobody could mistake. A room that she'd seen very little of, despite how it's purpose related to hers. Treading lightly, Villa scanned the shelves. She knew exactly what the vile she was seeking looked like, but not where it was amongst the seemingly endless shelves. This minor set-back didn't seem to put her off however, as her eyes moved quickly. It was a distinct color. White, a pearly iridescent kind of white, and it seemed to swirl like a gaseous substance in it's container. She caught sight of it on the top shelf, and craning her neck back, Villa reached up her fingers. Not even the freakishly elongated hands could reach the top, and so, reluctantly, Villa used a ring of sand to bring the precious bottle down to herself. As the sand dissipated, the corked vile fell into the cup her sleeves had formed, before she looked around for an empty syringe that hopefully hadn't been used.

Of course, there weren't any simply laying around. And so Villa pulled open the drawers she recognized seeing opened the most. In due time, she found her syringe, and carefully used the syringe to suck out enough of the swirling liquid to fill half of the glass tube. She was so accustomed to the puncturing of needles, that Villa didn't even flinch when she punctured the never disappearing scar on her left arm, where all the liquids that were injected into her for experiments entered her system.

A burning sensation filled her arm and she took a sharp breath and held it, squeezing her eyes shut. She remembered this part now.



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


Not paying the slightest bit of attention while Haeon't and Geote stretched over to the couch to deposit their load, who was slowly and groggily coming to, Aertan first took note of the fact that it was obvious the house hadn't been heated in a long time. Second, he noticed the fireplace. Upon invitation to come inside from Faewyn, Aertan looked around. Though he'd caught a glimpse of Alicel's house, he'd really only seen the narrow hallway, and part of the kitchen. It was strange to be in a house that looked so much like a house, rather than a church with rooms that branched off the main hall where services were held. To Aertan, it felt...

Cramped.

Regardless, Aertan kept this rather rude comment to himself, since even he knew it wasn't normal to open the door and suddenly stop for a few seconds. Keeping his silence, Aertan walked over to the fireplace, vaguely aware of how his safety shoes seemed to clunk heavily against the floor. Squatting down, Aertan peered up the chimney, half expecting a huge cloud of soot to just suddenly fall onto his head and dye his hair and face black, like things always went. But nothing fell, and Aertan assumed that they were all probably frozen solid.

Adela was not nearly as silent as everyone else seemed to be, as the minute Faewyn gave her call of okay, she stepped into the room and was halfway through pulling off her jacket before she put it back on. So Adela hated jackets, but it was just as cold inside as it was outside.

"It's really dusty in-" Adela began, but Reid summoned a breeze and wiped out the dust that Adela had been planning on commenting on. Blinking she shrugged, deciding to comment on the next time that caught her attention, pretending as if she'd never said anything about the dust, "Wow, it's really cold in here!"

"Faewyn," Aertan's call interupted, now watching Geote poking at the pitiful remains of what was probably once wood, "Do you mind if I light the fireplace?"

Alter Ego
December 11th, 2007, 03:56 AM
Despite the direness of their situation, Faewyn was wrapped in happy recollections as she strode across the kitchen, opening up another window to create a clear path for the wind to travel and occasionally pulling a drawer open to check its contents, an action usually followed by a nostalgic little sniff. The frigid air didn't bother her; that was something she was used to, after all, and the house itself was well-isolated, just like the rest of the structures in Beta. The fact that, even with such isolation, the temperature was several degrees below Tealian average had not even occurred to her.

It was not until Reid's request to hurry up with the search that she -- somewhat reluctantly -- left memory lane behind her, placing her old favorite mug back on its proper spot, unable to resist a tiny sigh at how unfair this was.

"Oh, right, coming!" the girl called, half-running back into the living room, now quite crowded, "You...I guess you can do that." she replied to Aertan's question about the fireplace, feeling an immediate need to explain the reluctance in her tone, "It's just a silly old memory." she elaborated sheepishly, "Mama...never wanted me to use the fireplace when they were away. She was..." the girl sighed, "...she was afraid I'd burn myself, I guess." the girl couldn't help a slight blush of embarrassment, "Umm...don't mind that, though, go right ahead. If..." she cast a glance at the gathered jackets in the room, all firmly buttoned, "If you're all really that cold."

She shook her head, as if to dislodge the current train of thought, "But we didn't come her to talk about childhood memories, did we? Mama's journals..." Faewyn bit her lip in thought, "She'd keep them well hidden, I'm sure. Ever since...ever since that one time when I found one of her mahstion books and-well..." the girl cast a meaningful glance at the slightly uneven thumb on her right hand, "Anyway, that one was in her study, supporting a table leg, right by the secret compartment behind the bookcase. Mama always said that there was no better way of flagging what you're trying to hide than making a hidden compartment so if you find any the notes inside will be fake. The real notes will be somewhere where you don't look, something you just pass by without a second glance...maybe somewhere like a broom closet or something?"

"Good enough for me." Reece remarked with a shrug, still firmly avoiding eye contact with the girl as he propped himself away from the wall he had been leaning against, striding towards the staircase, "We're not doing any good just navel-gazing here, so I say we split up and search; if anyone finds something or comes up with a new idea, just give a holler." with a curt nod towards the group, the soldier wandered up the stairs, clearly in no mood for interjections.

Faewyn bit down a bit harder on her lip, her eyes staring absently at Aertan's doings by the fireplace. No...that didn't sound like something her mother would do either. Verdance was smarter than that; she wouldn't just make the place unlikely so that someone could find it by accident, not if she knew that she'd most likely not come back. No, she would want to minimize the chances of anyone not knowing precisely what to look for ever getting their hands on the notes. She would make it a one strike and you're out situation, but at the same time she'd want to minimize the chance of someone triggering her trap by accident. That meant that she would leave hints for those she trusted, somehow...without drawing attention to it she would-

The realization suddenly hit Faewyn, her eyes widening on queue. Of course! It was precisely mama's style, it was so...obvious. She would rig a trap that would catch a foreign infiltrator, and what was the first thing someone from Carn or Tealia would do when they were faced with a desolate, unwarmed hovel without functioning light or heating?

There was no time for words, by the time she had finally managed to piece the sentence together Faewyn was already halfway through interposing Aertan's attempt at lighting the fireplace.

"Aertan! Don't!" the girl hastily dropped to her knees in front of the fireplace, her heart beating rapidly as she examined its interior, "Don't light that...it's...I think...no, I know. That's why-mama's instructions, they-"

She picked up one of the logs that had been stapled inside, grasping it firmly with both hands, despite the thick layer of soot on top, and swinging it at the brick fireplace with all her might, the worn wood shattering into tiny splinters, all save for the core.

It went thump.

Brushing aside the remnants of wood from the square-shaped object in her hands, the girl smiled triumphantly, taking a deep breath and blowing away the dirt. As she did so the object was indeed confirmed as a journal with a grayish cover. In fact, the cover of the journal was adorned by precisely the same pattern as the wood it had been buried inside. The pages, it seemed, were covered with a protective film of some kind, which -- a quick sniff revealed -- had a distinctly flammable smell to it. There was no mistaking the flourish of the handwriting within, however; all pretty curves and pressed tightly together over next to every inch of paper not occupied by sketches. Much like with Faewyn's journals, overlinings and footnotes dotted the pages, but these were all neatly stapled and organized.

"They were there so I wouldn't burn these. She covered all the pages in some kind of flammable wax." Faewyn explained, unable to resist a loving smile at the pages as she flipped through them, transfixed "One spark and all of it would have burned up...that's mama's style, alright." she cast a glance at the remaining logs, "There are probably more of them there, we should check those before lighting any fires."

Loki
December 11th, 2007, 07:44 AM
It had been good then, that Aertan had hesitated with lighting the fire. After all, the house had looked well abandoned for awhile, and he'd worried about the chimney being covered in soot or ice. Ice would just put his flame out when it melted, and soot would not be a happy experience. That, and that Faewyn hadn't seemed all too thrilled with the idea of him lighting a fire.

Aertan sat frozen, gazing with wide eyes at the papers in Faewyn's hands. He was still shocked by how sudden her halting call was. When Faewyn explained the situation, Aertan let out the breath he'd been holding, as if his very breath would set the pages on fire. (He wouldn't be surprised if they did.) It was good that he hadn't started the fire then, even though everyone other than Faewyn seemed freezing. Otherwise everything would've been just a waste of time. Standing up, Aertan peeled off his own jacket, which was incredibly warm. He, personally, wasn't cold at all, as warm mahstion particles seemed to stick to him. It was like having his own personal fireplace at all times. Throwing the black coat at Reid who looked colder than anyone else, Aertan turned back to look at the fireplace.

"I never would've thought of that." Aertan mumbled, not daring to poke his head back into the fireplace. He wasn't going to take his chances this time, and instead he opted to watch Faewyn flick through the notebook she'd pulled out. He nearly jumped out of his skin when he heard the click of the open window closing however, and craning his neck around, he sighed in relief when he saw Alicel at the window, looking groggy and sleep-deprieved, even though she'd gotten more sleep then anyone in the house. She floated back to the couch and sat down, still looking like she half-asleep. Not commenting on her, Aertan turned his gaze back to the fancy handwriting. His own handwriting was an ugly scrawl, narrow and tightly pressed together.

"Where are we?" Alicel inquired at the same time Aertan began to speak.

"How long is it going to take you to find what we're looking for?" Aertan asked, letting his eyes try and read the text upside down from a safe distance.

Alter Ego
December 12th, 2007, 06:05 AM
"Alicel, you're finally up!" Faewyn called cheerfully, beaming at her drowsy friend as another weight slipped off her shoulders, "It's...it's a relief. Anyway, this..." she made a sweeping gesture to encompass the room they were in and the ones adjoined to it, a slight flicker of pride in her voice, "...is my home. Though...I guess it would look more homey if the furniture wasn't all covered up."

"As for your question...I'm not sure..." Faewyn replied to Aertan, studying the notes -- detailing a Wionus-based levitation technique and, specifically, why it was a failure as far as practical use was concerned -- "It would help if I knew precisely what I was looking for. Now you said that you'd never heard about apostles until we ran into Cress, right?" she asked for confirmation, "Well, there was absolutely nothing on them in the Tealian database either. I checked that before we left. In fact, there's not a single piece of writing on them anywhere, and Carn really wants to win this war, right? If they had these apostles all along they would already have used them, I'm sure." she paused, rubbing her temples, "What I'm trying to say is...I can't just look up 'apostle' because no apostles existed when this was written. "

"I-I have a hunch, though..." Faewyn added, as if to reassure everyone that this wasn't half the wild goose chase that it was starting to look like, "You remember that mama and papa were investigating Carn when they...disappeared, right? They told me that they were going to investigate their culture, but..." she bit her lip, "Mama was the strongest Wionus user I've ever met, and papa used to work for the Tealian special forces before he got married. I just...I just can't picture both of them being needed for something like that. I think-no, I know that if mama would have heard about this she would have wanted to investigate." the girl chuckled slightly, "And when mama decided that something would get done, it always got done. She just was like that." the girl's expression turned serious, "If this really is it, then she would mention it somewhere in here...and it would explain why she would want it burned too. That sort of thing...she probably didn't want to risk Tealia trying it too." the girl paused, recalling Reid's patriotism and hastily adding, "It's nothing personal, I'm sure; mama just didn't like governments much. She said it comes with the job. Anyway, that's why I think that somewhere in here-"

The girl paused in mid-speech, her eyes falling on a singe line of text within the journal and her lips mouthing the words without her even noticing.

"Mahstion grafting?"

The girl's full attention was now turned to the words, her eyes traveling across the page at a rapid rate.

"29.7.193

A's research confirmed genetic route unfeasible. Unusually powerful internal mahstion presence at development stages results in high ratio of fetus deformation/miscarriage. Infant may also suffer neurological damage (Thaum syndrome)=> Thaumogen halts internal mahstion generation. Inhibition of thaumogen receptors results in mental disorder/death. (Exclusive choice of mahstion type genetic self-protection mechanism?) But A brought up an interesting point: body mahstion tolerance grows from exposure to internal mahstion presence. A person of age 8 or above may be suitable subject for grafted organ. A is pursuing the theory. (Respectfully declined use of F as a research subject) Report promised on a later date. K expressed concern over the project and I can see what he means: human beings are not naturally adapted to wielding multiple types of mahstion. There will most likely be complications beyond those normally associated with grafting. Still, this theory is too intriguing to simply ignore."

Faewyn felt a slight chill that had nothing to do with the temperature creep up her spine. There was just something...unsettling about seeing her beloved mother speculate over the deaths of small children in such a callous manner. She didn't know what the 'F' referred to, but the fact that she had been ten years old back then didn't exactly make her feel at ease. Still, Faewyn pushed on...this was just the way her mother wrote things: short and straight to the point. The decision to respectfully decline had, she told herself, certainly been made out of love.

The girl refused to believe anything else.

Skipping past a couple of morbidly interesting but currently not that relevant pages detailing the process of grafting the limb of one human being onto another while keeping both alive -- complete with sketches a bit too detailed for comfort -- Faewyn finally found the entry she had been looking for:

"21.9.197

A few quick lines before K comes around to give the inevitable lecture.

The graft project has proven far more volatile than expected. Out of 20 subjects, 5 have survived thus far, and this is using the term loosely. Aside from usual graft rejections, the subjects have exhibited most peculiar and gruesome symptoms. Though A insists that these are freak incidents, I can not erase the image of a subject's arm seeking to burn itself to cinders from my mind, nor that of the blind girl who insisted on being treated, now comatose with fingernails growing at nearly thrice the normal rate and cerebral activity all but ended. Thaum syndrome is rampant, and I have my doubts about the survival of even these last subjects. Tried in vain to persuade A out of continuing the project. He remains strangely enthusiastic and mentioned that a foreign colleague has shown interest in his work. I can only imagine who...or why.

Note to self: take the matter up with L later on, this bears closer investigation.


16.10.197

I have no doubt that this journal will make for an awkward legacy, but should I fail to return it is imperative that this information be passed to those it concerns and no-one else. Alexander Thaum has left the country and somehow eluded the covert ops, his latest research notes -- needless to say -- have disappeared with him. Officially, this case does not exist and thus it is best not to inform official sources about anything contained within this journal. Though evidence is lacking at best, what little I have managed to coax out of L seems to indicate that he is headed for Carn out of all places. Needless to say, covert ops are fidgety at best, as relations with the country are already strained due to our information suppression agreement with Tealia. L is going to investigate, and I simply can't allow him to leave on such a dangerous task alone. I have left F in the care of K; he may not approve of my decision, but he knows as well as I that burdening her with an issue of this magnitude would neither be fair nor reasonable. The fewer know of this the better.

Given that you are reading this, I must assume that the worst has happened. I have not returned from Carn and am in all likelihood dead or in the process of being interrogated, but more crucially -- know that this means that the graft project is still in operation. You have also refrained from lighting this on fire, so I must assume that you have either gained my brother's trust or are exceptionally perceptive. In either case, you have passed the test. Do not, I repeat: do not attempt to track me down. I am most likely deceased and it is far more important that these inhuman experiments are terminated once and for all. I do not know why a country so hostile towards science as Carn would foster the development of such maverick technology, but I have no doubt that their cause is far from noble. Imagine for yourself: if a partial graft on a subject of frail health can create a monster, what will the full fusion of two healthy human beings form? Carn imprisons a good million people a year for crimes against Thylonstus, should Thaum or whoever seduced him be in a high enough position, materials would be the least of their worries.

Enclosed with this journal, I have left a compendium of offensive mahstion techniques as well as what little information I've secured on the graft subjects; I can only hope that they will be of some assistance in terminating this menace.

Also, as a final request, my last will: please make sure that my daughter, Faewyn, will not get involved in this in any manner. This is all I ask in return for the information I've enclosed here. I may have failed in my original task, I may have failed in my aspirations to become a good mother, but she should not have to suffer for my mistakes. The third journal enclosed within this pile is addressed solely to her and has no bearing on anyone else. Please deliver it to her as soon as possible. She is a bright young woman and will, I'm sure, see reason once she has read its contents.

Sincerely,

Verdance Ayre"

Faewyn was speechless, her eyes nailed to the last lines as tears began welling up from them -- irrefutable scientific evidence that her parents had loved her, but at the same time, it was basically proof that despite her best efforts...

"Mama..." she grit out, her grip around the journal tightening, "She's...she's really..."

The girl's shoulders sagged, her body quaking violently in-between the sobs as they fought their way up. She had found her explanation alright, but next to this revelation it just seemed so...trivial...

It was just too much. She needed time to digest this, she needed...gosh darn it, she needed a hug, and right now the girl really didn't give a damn about the consequences, her arms firmly catching the closest victim in her vicinity: Aertan. Normally, she would have been very careful about touching him, but there were just times in life when you needed a shoulder to cry against, even if it wasn't a volunteered shoulder.

"She's gone!" the girl bawled at the top of her lungs, her face buried in ex-priest's shirt as her happy little world was basically shattering to tiny pieces around her, "She's-she's really gone, isn't she?" sure, probability had dictated that her parents would be dead, but seeing it stated so matter-of-factly in her mother's own, curly handwriting just brought the prospect to a whole new level of reality. Mama was always right, that was a belief she had clung to for years, but now it was wrestling with her equally fundamental belief that everything would turn out alright in the end if she just tried hard enough.

A single creak emerged from the staircase, the unmistakable sound that someone had taken a step there, but the person had already disappeared upstairs without another word.

Loki
December 12th, 2007, 04:36 PM
"Fae..." Alicel murmured, torn to see her friend crying. She made an effort to stand, but her knees locked, and sent her back onto the couch with a splitting headache. Listening to Faewyn's cries, it was all Alicel could do not to cry with her. Sniffling, Alicel swallowed the lump in her throat. She didn't want to add to Faewyn's pain, and this was a moment where Faewyn should've been allowed to cry shamelessly, without thought of how people around her might feel. Faewyn was always too kind a person.

A silence overcame Aertan when Faewyn threw her arms about him. Embraces were rare for Aertan, but though he normally made no effort to return them, in this moment his arms moved on their own. He put his hand lightly on the back of her head, and let his other arm rest on her back. The ex-priest was very aware of keeping the abrupt cut-off of his arm from touching her, as he listened to her words patiently. However, answering her question was something that Aertan could not bring himself to do. He personally felt that after so many years, there was little chance that the latter was the case. Carn had probably interrogated Faewyn's mother all they wanted by now, and long threw her away. Though Aertan wanted to tell Faewyn that this case was important, and that Carn would undoubtedly need all the answers from her mother they could get, he didn't know what to think anymore. The Carn in the journal was not the Carn that Aertan had lived in. And knowing Carn, any kind of Carn, they were not the type to keep people for long. He thought of Rosaline, who was kept captive for 16 years. But she was a special case. He took a moment to clear his thoughts, think only of what was at hand, and to put into words a response that might put Faewyn at ease.

"I'm sorry." Aertan mumbled quietly. The two words he'd managed to utter were far from what he'd imagined. He had little time to comprehend though, as he lifted his gaze to where the staircase was. There was only one person on the second floor. And that person, Aertan thought with a displeased look, should've been the one here, with whole arms. He knew that if it was anyone else, they would've been able to say something to Faewyn that would keep her tears at bay. But Aertan knew that giving her a hope that could only be shattered by the real truth was the worst thing he could do. If he told her that her mother was surely still alive, lied about his experiences with that accursed King's tendencies, what would happen if she discovered the real proof that Verdance was dead? She would surely, surely hate him. When this thought passed through his mind, Aertan glared down at the journal before he thought of something that wasn't pure speculation. Something that wasn't just his mind moving in circles.

Adela opened her mouth to say something, though closed it immediately without letting a sound escape. She was now standing where Alicel had stood to close the window, having moved there despite complaining of the cold. Her expression could not match the concerned look on Aertan's face. Her expression could not match the pained look on Alicel's face. No, upon her visage was a plain look that gave no sympathy or pity. Her blank stare seemed not to register anything.

"Faewyn," Came the girl's somewhat higher pitched and inquiring voice that seemed freakishly calm, "Are you leaving?"

parallelzero
December 12th, 2007, 08:34 PM
"I'm going out for a while, you guys should try to get some rest." It was very much like Reid to run away when a subject came up in which he couldn't deal with. Even in a case like this, where there was much to be discussed and a friend to comfort, he couldn't stand to stick around. He'd lost loved ones before, and at the same time he had his butterfly wings physically torn from his back. He knew all too well how Faewyn most likely felt, but because he knew all too well, it was more of a reason for him to want to avoid it. So, hands in his pockets to protect them from the bitter cold, Reid made a quiet exit out of the house.

The afternoon turned to evening, and that evening quickly turned to night, and Reid had yet to return. The reality of his absence was that he had decided to lounge around a local coffee shop. It was small, yet warm and cozy, the strong scent of coffee beans wafted throughout the entire building. While positioned at a window booth, he could do nothing but watch the streetlights catch the vision of gentle snowflakes falling. The waitress came by once and a while to check on him, and Reid was captivated by curiosity every time she came by. She was about his age, maybe a year or two younger, and her body was thin as if she rarely ate, frail, and just beginning to define itself. Her hair, a shimmering silver colour, was styled in ringlets that fell halfway down her back and were tied by royal blue lace. Her eyes were where her appearance became extra bizarre. While one was a dull orange colour, the other lacked any colour at all, with just a white eye with a white iris. Her outfit, while most of the other waitresses possessed spiffy new uniforms that looked as if they were out of a Victorian storybook, was nothing but a few brown rags and a name tag. Her name was Ellianne, or si the name tag read. The most intriguing thing about this girl was that she never spoke a word, but presented herself in such a manner that the customer knew what she was talking about.

"You noticed it too, huh?" Mistral asked Reid from within.

Reid replied quickly and to the point. "Yeah. She's probably terribly poor. On top of that, it seems she's probably mute and blind in one eye, not to mention terribly underfed." It only took a simply inquiry to the store manager to confirm his suspicion. "Ellianne DuCharme, age 14. She lost her voice a year ago as the result of entering a stage of shock, apparently after her parents were murdered. Her right eye went blind after having her head held up to an open flame for two hours by one of the town's hoodlums after he assumed she was choosing not to reply to his demands, while in reality she was mute. She also has to make a journey to Gregar, but she lacks an escort. Seriously, we get so caught up in our own ordeals that we tend to forget the people suffering right in front of our eyes..."

OOC: I'd write more, but I'm tired. I hope the timeskip didn't screw anyone up! Just, get on with business as usually, though I don't want anyone bothering Reid.

Alter Ego
December 13th, 2007, 10:10 AM
For a few more moments, Faewyn just kept crying. There was really nothing anyone could have said or done to change that. The moment she had seen those words, the one hope she had clung to for years had been snuffed, just like that. There was no way to describe the horrible emptiness it had left behind, of having wasted three years of one's life in a happy little lie, of having to face up to the fact that no matter how much she wished for things to be otherwise, she was now alone in the world.

All alone.

It was not until maintaining the constant tearflow became physical impossible to maintain that Faewyn began noticing the world around her once more. The first thing she noticed was that the shirt she had been crying against was now considerably wet. But beyond the dampness, she felt warmth...the warmth of a hug returned, and a quick glance upwards revealed a concerned expression on Aertan's face. It was obvious that he wasn't used to this kind of situation, but it was equally obvious that he was trying to comfort her all the same and the gesture alone was already touching. Alicel seemed worried too, as far as she could make out the expression on the figure lying on the couch, and it was then that a realization occurred to her.

She wasn't.

She wasn't alone at all.

Faewyn abruptly tightened her grip, bursting into tears again, but they were of a completely different kind this time. This wasn't her loss she was crying over. No, this was crying over what she had. That was right, even if her parents were gone, even if her quest had left a hole in its wake, there were others; she still had people to care about, people who cared about her, she still had a job to do.

She still had purpose.

Wiping aside the last of the tears, Faewyn finally -- if rather reluctantly -- relinquished the ex-priest from her grip, managing a small smile even as the occasional sob still fought its way through. Oh, she probably looked a mess after all that crying, but at least she was a stable mess now. Stable enough to respond to Adela's question anyway.

"No way." she replied, shaking her head firmly, "I-I know mama would be against this, but there's no way I'm backing out now. I'm already involved, and I want to see this through. No, I need to see this through. I've got people to find and a prophecy to fulfill and..." she couldn't help her smile widening a little, beaming at Aertan and Alicel from behind her tear-riddled face, "...well, I really can't picture any people I'd rather be with right now. I know we haven't known each other for that long, but you guys are really the best friends I have. Just...thank you. Thank you for everything."

Her little speech thus finished, the girl took a deep breath, feeling considerably more at ease than before. The sadness was still there at the back of her mind, and no doubt it would be back later, but right now...well, right now she was just happy that there was still light at the end of the tunnel.

With her immediate worries silenced, Faewyn finally became aware of something else. Namely, the fact that she was tired...this entire day had been stressing, both mentally and physically, but until this point she had been too wrapped up in things to notice. Now the fatigue was there with a vengeance, though, and the girl stifled a small yawn. It was then that a final revelation struck her, the girl tilting her head in curiosity as her glance traveled from the occupants of the room to the darkening scenery outside.

"Umm...where are Reid and Reece? Shouldn't they have been back by now?"


OOC: Subplot...go! For the purpose of not completely blowing a fuse with this post, just assume that Reece has mysteriously disappeared from the house. It will all be explained in my next IC, just as long as we don't get any more time jumps between now and then. :3

Loki
December 13th, 2007, 09:07 PM
Aertan smiled when Faewyn stated that she would be continuing on with working on unravelling this project that her mother had spoken of. Of course, it wasn't all that great that she was denying her mother's final wish, but Aertan didn't really care at this point. It wasn't really his place to judge either way. But without Faewyn's arms around him and her tears staining his shirt, Aertan finally realized how awkward the whole scene was. Standing up, this gesture helped Aertan regain some feeling of normalcy, and the first thing he noticed when he stood up was the patch of soaked fabric on his shirt that seemed to triple the cold on that single area of skin. He stared down at the journals and took a step back as a precaution, looking around himself before stretching his shirt out and lighting a fire in his hand, holding the flames up to the fabric to help dry it out.

"Reid just l-left," Alicel said, sniffling and trying to compose herself, now even more teary eyed from Faewyn addressing her as a friend. It wasn't as if she hadn't before, but this time it just seemed so much more important to Alicel, "He said we should get some rest."

"And Reece, as far as I know," Aertan said, extinguishing the flames and holding out a hand to help Faewyn to her feet, "is still upstairs. I don't know what he's doing though."

Though the dark splotch on Aertan's white shirt was still visible, it was already dry enough that the warm Fionus clinging to his skin would suck all the moisture out of it in a flash. In the meantime, Aertan was thinking of the last time he got a good night's sleep. He could hardly believe that it had really only been a few hours before. It felt like it had been weeks since they'd departed on the airship, and the small headache that throbbed at the very back of his head wasn't helping his energy much. Though since he was long used to more splitting headaches from when Haeon't and Geote used to protest about being kept in their wings, his face was composed.

"Well, if we're leaving tomorrow morning," Adela stated straight-forwardly, "then we should take Reid's advice and get some sleep. And food. Since we don't know when the next apostle attack is going to be, it's best if we recollect ourselves during this time we've got." She said, turning around and looking at Faewyn, trying not to be too expectant as a guest.

parallelzero
December 14th, 2007, 04:47 PM
"Hey kid, who the hell do you think you are, just walking into our turf like that?"

"Great job Reid, just wander into the one place in town with a high gang population density, and an alley no less. You are my hero. I guess I shouldn't have expected you to remember the way back to Faewyn's." Yeesh, what was Mistral's problem?

Reid sighed. Between Rod and the apostles, he had obtained enough combat experience in the past two months to dismiss this man as a minimal threat. Out of the darkness stepped more and more of these men, all apparently under the first man's control. He turned to leave, but the opposite end of the alley was blocked as well. They were all cloaked, so it was impossible to see what kind of weaponry they had, if any. In this situation, he had no other choice. He decided to take a leap of faith. He reached for the board on his back and through it down, channeling the Wionus into the board to keep it afloat. He leapt for the board, but it was no good. The leader was on top of him in a flash, which wasn't the biggest shock of them all. Before getting a fist to the face, Reid noticed the man's wings. They were long, with an overall width of ten feet, black, and scaley, with a thin, almost filmlike layer spanning the lower portion of the wings. Wyvern wings.

To clarify, there are many different types of wings in the world, but they are bunched together in classes. The ``highest`` level of wing class were white, feathered wings, only possessed by those with royal blood. Then below that was essentially everything else. In reality, there were two classes higher than the white winged. Tealia`s mythological symbol was the phoenix, while Carn possessed the Wyvern. As such, there exists a wyvern tribe, and a phoenix tribe, both with very few numbers. While these two tribes are supposed to be held in an even higher regard than the royalty, things had progressed so that members of these tribes were captured and kept as pets to show wealth. Their numbers slowly diminished until there were only a few left to freedom. Inhuman? Yes. But society didn't care. If you were lucky enough to catch one, you could fetch a small fortune in exchange.

Reid got to his feet, realizing that the entire group must have been refugees of these terms, and dropped his bow, which didn't get too impressed of a response from Mistral, who had just had an all around crappy evening. "I'll leave. I had no intention of harming you before, and that has not changed."

The response from the man was less than subtle. "DO YOU THINK WE CARE? Our brethren have been enslaved by your people over and over again for the past fifty years. If I want to kill you, I damn well will. Besides, we can't let our real identities get out. Many of us have begun to build lives here, after all." His breath was visible with every word, though Reid was more distracted with how the hell he was going to weasel out of this one. The man didn't allow Reid much time to think, however, as he leapt at the boy with a dagger in hand. DAMMIT. There wasn't enough time to even draw his bow. He closed his eyes, and waited for it to all be over.

"AGH!" Reid coughed as he jolted upright in the woolen cot he was placed in, although he shot himself back down to the cot after the sudden movement cause a searing pain in the right side of his chest? Where was he? Had he blackened out just before he got hit? No, wait, the dagger pierced his chest, and then he passed out. But why was he still alive? He turned his head to the right, to face a fire burning brightly, lighting up the entire tent. This was truly the home of one less fortunate. Food scraps were everywhere, the small tent was a mess, and rags were everywhere.

He turned his head to the door as the man from before stormed into the tent. "So you're still alive, huh? I guess that's lucky then. Speaking of luck, you're lucky Lady Arlene arrived when she did and notioned that you were with her." He walked over to the fire and tore a piece of meat off of the grill, throwing it on Reid's bed while gesturing for him to eat, which he did. The muscular man's face was covered by a hood, which troubled the boy. And who was this Lady Arlene? "I applied a special wyvern lotion to your wound. You won't be fully healed by the morning, but you'll be able to move." A girl walked in behind the man, and she looked at Reid with one lifeless eye, and one living eye. It was the girl from the coffee shop! He wasn't quite sure at first, since her silver hair from before was now completely down, as opposed to the ringlets, although it was still quite curled. Her outfit was quite different than all of the other residents in town, consisting of a deep blue, sleeveless traveling gown, and a pair of sandals in a matching colour. On her forehead she also wore a silver tiara with a deep blue gem embedded in the center, the design on the tiara made to look like vines wrapping around the gem. Above all differences, the main one was the pair of scaley, silver wyvern wings exiting her back. Reid had wondered why she had her wings covered in the shop, but now it was clear. Her pair was much smaller than the black winged man, perhaps spanning only six feet. The girl smiled at him, before skipping over and sitting on the cot with him.

"This is Ellianne Arlene DuCharm, though make sure to refer to her as "Lady Ellianne" or "Lady Arlene". She is our ray of light, that girl. She may not be able to talk or see out of one eye, but she's a skilled dancer, that's for sure, but she also has another unique ability. She can see the future." Reid held his laughter in, on fear of reopening his wound, and of being beaten by the man for his insolence. Fortune telling? What a joke. "And, you're taking her with you when you wake up in the morning as payment for letting you live."

"Wait, what?! Why?" Reid almost choked on his tongue. Great, now he had to babysit a wyvern girl.

"She was summoned to the main cathedral in Carn two weeks ago, but we cannot spare anymore men, nor can we afford to hire her an escort. That's why I let you live. You'll do it for us." Reid's eyes locked onto the girl, who gave him a weak smile. She was the epitome of frailty, that girl. She made Rosaline look like the healthiest girl in the world. In this case though, it looked like he had no choice.

"Fine."

"Good. Well then, good night, I'll have Lady Ellianne come in early in the morning to wake you up." The man said as both he and the girl left, the girl giving him one last glance before leaving. Yeesh, how was he going to explain THIS to them.

Alter Ego
December 15th, 2007, 12:08 PM
"Oh, alright." Faewyn replied, nodding to Aertan as she accepted his help to get on her feet, "I'm going to go check up on him. I think...I think I need to talk with him for a bit. Oh, and Aertan?" she added, lowering her voice out of consideration for the fact that there were two others in the room, "You didn't have time to change those bandages with all this commotion, did you?" she casually slipped the messenger bag off her shoulder, placing it on the table, "I've got plenty of spares here if you don't have any of your own. Just...don't push your luck with that arm, alright?"

With that and a last nod to those gathered, the girl strode up the staircase, soon disappearing from view. There weren't many places to go upstairs, just three rooms: hers, her parents', and the guest room. Well, there was a fourth if you counted the small balcony. A sudden, chilly breeze brushed against Faewyn's face as she passed the aforementioned entrance, and as she spun around in surprise at what should surely have been a firmly closed door, she thought she glimpsed a figure on the moonlit balcony. A blink later, it was gone, however, a single pair of bootprints within a puddle of half-melted snow the only evidence that anyone had ever been there.

Drawing the obvious conclusion, the girl rushed out to the balcony, peering around in confusion. It was then that she spotted the figure again. It was perched on the very top of the roof that faced the wilderness beyond town, overlooking the landscape from a hunched position, wings spread wide.

"Reece?" Faewyn ventured, flapping her dragonfly wings for a moment to get them up to speed before flying up to the rooftop. Precarious though the perch on the top of the panels was, she stood just as firmly as her friend, "I..." she paused for a moment, searching for the right words, before approaching the figure, "I just wanted to say...about what happened on the ship, I-"

"Reece?"

There was something wrong about Reece's voice. No, that wasn't Reece's voice at all. It was the voice of a woman, and as the figure turned around to face her, her gender was effectively confirmed, "So sorry, little girl." the woman drawled, the piercing eyes set into her tanned face -- reminiscent of burning coals -- sending a shiver up Faewyn's spine, even as the heat radiating around her caused the snow around her to evaporate, wrapping her visage in a thin mist, "You just missed him."

"Who..." Faewyn began, staring at the stranger in confusion "Who are you?". The body was the spitting image of Reece's, clothes included, save for the key fact that it was female, even the weapon held casually in her right hand was identical. Yet this was clearly not Sieglinde either; the eyes were a clear indication of this. The girl's eyes narrowed in suspicion, her hand darting for the staff the moment the obvious conclusions crossed her mind.

Noticing the gesture, the woman merely laughed. A cold, malicious little laugh, "Such hostility..." she purred, "...and here I thought we could be friends..."

"Shut-shut up, negafael!" Faewyn retorted, returning her gaze with a glare of her own, spear-tip pointed firmly at the stranger, "Get out of my friend's body right this instant! Give him back!"

"Give him back?" the negafael echoed mockingly, "And here I thought you didn't care where he was as long as he stayed away from you. You should be thanking me for making that wish come true."

"What are you talking about?!" the girl retorted, "I've never said anything like-"

Just then, the conversation back at the ship struck her. Specifically, the ending.

"Finally sinking in, is it?" the woman prompted, sauntering a few steps closer, "Reece isn't here because you don't want him to be, and right after he put his life on the line joining up a band of strangers just to protect you. Oh, Fay, Fay, Fay..." she tutted, shaking her head in mock-disapproval, "Behind that sugary-sweet little face of yours you really have a cold personality."

"Shut up!" Faewyn retorted, clenching the spear-mode weapon harder, "SHUT UP! You're lying! Reece knows I didn't mean what I said! He knows that I was upset, he-!" tears welled up from her eyes once more as she charged towards the negafael, "He would never do something stupid like that! I'll make you give him back!"

"Just as I thought..." the woman said, continuously calm even as the spear tip came ever closer to her, "You call him a friend yet you have no inhibitions about harming his body at all. What did I tell you, Reece?" she seemed to address the last remark to the air around her, "Not even a hint of remorse." the negafael shook her head, "Looks like you leave me no choice, Fay."

Before Faewyn could alter her course, the negafael had brought both wings around herself, following it up by flapping the violently to the side and sending forth a wave of heat that rippled and distorted the air it coursed through, melting the snow packed across the roof into water which immediately cascaded down the steeply angled roof, claiming the girl's footing and sweeping her with it.

Faewyn felt a dull ache course through her body as she slammed down on her left side, rolling helplessly down with the deluge as she attempted to grasp a hold of something. The next thing she knew, she was all out of roof, experiencing the force of gravity pulling her downward with all its might, the sky glinting with stars above her. She attempted to flap her wings, but numbed by the freezing water and bruised by the tumble, they could do little but flap feebly, barely breaking her fall.

Was this it, then? Was this how it was going to end? Would she end up in the same place as mama? Right after she had found a new reason to keep going? What about her friends? Had someone heard the noise? Would someone be there to break her fall? Would they-would they be able to get through to Reece and help him? Would they be able to tell that this was all...her fault?

A fresh batch of tears obscured the figure observing her fall from view, a single word crossing her lips, "Reece..."

The negafael didn't even raise an eyebrow as Faewyn's body suddenly halted in mid-fall, hanging in place like a bizarre marionette, what little chest she had disappearing from view along with her right arm, a thick covering of mist swirling around the spot where the insect wings had once been, soon molding itself into the shape of a pair of majestic angel wings.

"Rather slow reaction, I should think." the woman remarked casually, smirking at the figure who hovered up to roof level again, glaring at her with deep, blue eyes, "For a moment, I almost thought you wouldn't show."

"So sorry to keep you waiting." the fael replied dryly, Wionus gathering around his one remaining arm, "Who are you and what have you done with Sieglinde?!"

"Still those same old questions?" the negafael asked in a bored voice, "The name is Ifalna, if you must know, and I haven't laid a finger on your little girlfriend. Happy?"

"The moment I see you banished to the recess you belong in, negafael."

"Real charmer, aren't you?" Ifalna teased, effortlessly raising the glaive in one hand, Fionus coiling around her body, a decidedly hungry grin on her face as she made a challenging hand gesture towards her opponent, "Well then, do your worst."

In response to the statement, the phantom wings on Isaire's back gave a flap of their own, a roaring whirlwind forming around the negafael, collecting the recently released water within it, the half-formed ice crystals glistening in the starlight as the fael flew straight up, floating just above the reach of the gale before lunging vertically downwards into the eye of the vortex, Wionus-tipped spear first.

A blast whose sheer luminosity would have put an emergency flare to shame erupted on the roof, the sheer noise of the impact rattling the windows of the house and effectively alerting everyone who had somehow managed to miss the struggle thus far.

When the light and smoke cleared, the damage to the roof turned out to be surprisingly small. The tiles had been scorched around the spot where plufael and negafael had clashed, but surprisingly the tiles still clung together, even as the snow had long since evaporated. Standing on the right-hand edge of the roof, Isaire panted, grasping the stump that was his right hand as what little remained of it began dissolving into particles of green mahstion. He was losing power, and quick...but why? Certainly, he hadn't been at full power, but the power should have been returning to him in queue with Sieglinde's wounds healing, not leaving. It made no sense! Unless...a terrible suspicion crept on Isaire, but just then the taunting voice of the negafael interrupted him.

"Is that it?"

Ifalna looked decidedly bored as she stepped out from the veil of smoke and steam that had surrounded her. The arms of the overcoat had burned off and she bore a number of minor abrasions on her skin, but given the force of the attack the wounds should have been far worse, "How boring..." the negafael complained, pretending to pout, "I was almost enjoying myself for a moment there. Don't tell me it's over already..."

Isaire merely glared in response, panting as he coaxed more mahstion out of his reserves and straightened his pose.

Ifalna cocked her head to the side, "Not coming? Oh well..." she gave an indifferent shrug, igniting a flame at the tip of each finger on her right hand, the left still holding the glaive steady, "Looks like I'll have to come for you then." the negafael swung her hand towards her opponent, releasing the flames into the air where they scattered into a formation reminiscent of the tips of a five-point star, each flame blossoming into a tiny fireball as they surrounded Isaire, who immediately countered with another powerful gale which snuffed the flames from existence, only to find the negafael's glaive mere inches from his head as he had finished.

"Pretty good." the negafael conceded as her slash rammed into the tiles of the roof while Isaire took distance from her again, a set of Wionus-induced cuts appearing on her cheek, "Too bad you forgot about the sixth."

It was then that the wave of heat caught Isaire's attention, a last-minute air barrier being the only thing that kept the roaring fireball Ifalna had sent to circle him from inflicting critical damage. The blast was still considerable, however, and knocked the fael onto his back.

Groaning, Isaire struggled to his feet, even as his left index finger took its leave. It was then that the direction of the green mahstion caught his attention, the plufael's eyes widening in realization, "You...you're using-"

"Looks like you finally figured it out." Ifalana said, striding over to her fallen adversary and casually raising the shirt to reveal the lower half of her abdomen, several tendrils of green clearly visible in-between the skin while the mahstion circled around the cuts on her cheek, soon filling them, "Fael healing techinque. Your healing technique, to be specific. Lovely thing, but you've got to be careful where to aim it...doesn't end until it's done you know. Oh well..." she snapped her fingers, a new fireball assembling in her palm, "I suppose you won't be around to benefit from that knowledge. It's been fun, but I do so hate to leave loose ends." a wicked little grin appeared on her face as she released the projectile, "Ta-ta."


OOC: Okay...I think it's random intervention time. Though if you don't feel like it I can always improvise a way to get Faewyn out of this situation. But really, I think it was about time to finish this post. Resolution to come in my next. :3

Loki
December 15th, 2007, 01:17 PM
"Thanks." Aertan stated blandly, glancing at the messenger bag. He was hardly looking forward to re-bandaging his arm. Regardless, he sifted through it's contents and pulled out a fresh roll of bandages and let Haeon't pull out a tube of ointment. Placing the bandages on the shelf of the bookcase, he gingerly peeled off the bandaging that he'd applied just that morning and let the rolls fall to the ground slowly as he finally revealed the gauze pad that was covering the severed end of his arm. Geote gathered up the used bandages on the floor and swallowed them up, just like he did with anything else that was grotesque, while Haeon't and Aertan worked together to unravel the bandages. Aertan jumped when a tendril of (freezing cold) water engulfed the scarring tissue on his arm and the skin that was stretching to cover the open wound. His eyes were annoyed as they stared coldly at Alicel, who was massaging her temple with two fingers.

"I'm going to sleep." Adela declared, scaling the stairs to find Faewyn and ask if there was a bed she could use. When Aertan decided the little girl was out of earshot, he turned his glare back to Alicel.

"Mind your own business."

"It's going to get infected." Alicel replied.

"Like I said, mind your own business." He turned to face the bookshelf, his back to Alicel as he let Haeon't squeeze the yellow ointment onto his wrist. Silence fell over them while Aertan rebandaged his arm, and through this silence, the two could hear a definite scuffle on the second floor. Or was it the second floor? It should've been closer, louder if it was the second floor. It was a bit muffled...

"Aren't you going to go see what's going on?" Alicel asked, breaking the silence and sitting back in surprise when Aertan whirled around and sent a fireball in her direction that extinguished itself before impact.

"How many times do I have to say it?!" Aertan barked, his voice gaining in volume, "I hate people like you!"

With that, he swept out of the living room and entered the kitchen, dragging out one of the chairs and sitting down in it, re-doing the bandages that had loosened upon his leave. As long as he wasn't in the same room as that accursed girl who was every reminder of his blood, it was okay with him. That stupid girl who was always trying to impose her ways on him. Why should he have to go see what was going on? What Faewyn said to that soldier had nothing to do with him, and he wasn't curious.

Standing silently in the room, Adela watched the battle before her unfold, providing no assistance. She certainly could've, and she certainly knew who she'd be siding with, but a heavy weight seemed to be pulling at her eyelids. And so she stood, half-asleep while Isaire and Ifalna duked it out, Xaviae pacing back and forth in her mind with a desire to help, to fight. She was vaguely aware that she was watching Xaviae from a place no other than the base of the mother tree, where Jeckt was undoubtedly chained. She felt his amusement at Xaviae's internal conflict more clearly than Xaviae's anxiety. But she was too tired to care, really.

When the flickering flames caught her teal eyes though, the weights were lifted and the projectile swallowed up by a pool of Dation, similar to the style in which Cress had stopped Adela's mahstion bullet. The youngest soldier in the group held her arm aloft, her hand hanging limply from it's wrist and her eyes half-closed. Reminiscent of a puppet, she mumbled quietly, "Let's not tie them up... don't even need to... say we did...."

Alter Ego
December 16th, 2007, 10:29 AM
Ifalna blinked as her projectile disappeared, a flicker of annoyance crossing her features as she turned her glare to the source of the Dation. Seizing on the opportunity granted by his opponent's distraction, Isaire unleashed another burst of Wionus, the gale-force wind smashing into the negafael's stomach like a hammer and sending her backwards, though she soon regained her composure, taking up a new stance on the other side of the roof as another burst of mahstion escaped from Isaire's body and dutifully began healing the bruise.

"Well, well." Ifalna remarked, returning to her usual insufferably cocky attitude as she sized up the girl, clearly not impressed by what she saw, "Looks like we have a party crasher. But...no matter..." she smirked at Isaire's rapidly failing posture as the fael's second arm began fading, "It looks like I've already accomplished what I wanted. How long would you give the lifetime of your avatar, plufael? Ten minutes? And with your host in such a condition too..." she tutted, "How very tragic."

Isaire's usually serene expression was distorted by anger as the reality of the situation began to sink in,"You...you're not going to get away with this."

"Oh, please." Ifalna snorted, "Try to have an original thought at least once during your pathetic existence. Not much left of it, you know. In fact..." she twirled the glaive around wither her fingers, bright flames lighting at both ends before she hurled it straight towards Adela at full force. Not waiting to let anyone give a reaction, the negafael unleashed a new wave of heat towards Isaire, knocking the exhausted plufael off his feet, a vague illusion a figure among the haze appearing in front of his eyes, only to be behind him a moment later, fionus heading for his throat, "I think it's just about over."

The fingers swept, the heat warping and distorting the air around it, and then, just as the arc was about to draw to a close, a sudden mixture of confusion and pain appeared on the negafael's face.

"But..." she grit out, staring nonplussed at the the gaping hole that had appeared at her abdomen, waiting in vain for the thin Wionus-laced hand responsible for it to disappear, "...that's not-no!" the negafael staggered backwards under the assault, the green mahstion that had been trapped within seeping out into the air and vanishing, "You stupid negafael! What have you done?! Don't you realize that the girl's body would have been yours to control without him?!"

The figure gave no response, merely standing in a slightly hunched manner as it allowed the Wionus to fade, the locks of teal obscuring its face from view, "Negafael?" it echoed at last, a mirthless little grin spreading across its face as the head tilted upwards, revealing two tired eyes.

Beetle black eyes.

"So sorry, little girl, you just missed him."

"You?" Ifalna's obnoxiously confident manner was rapidly crumbling, "But-there's no way you'd have the skill to-!"

"I didn't." Faewyn interrupted, "Typhoeus did. I figured he would jump in if I tried to take the hit and I was right." her grimace of a grin widened slightly, "Looks like whatever he used was strong enough to shatter the healing technique too." grasping her right hand with her left, Faewyn began charging the one technique she knew would be strong enough for the job, "Game over, Ifalna."

"You vicious little brats!" Ifalna spat out, her glare traveling from the almost psychotic-looking Faewyn to the still fully capable Adela with newfound fear as she grasped the now non-healing wound with one hand, "Don't think that you've won this! This body is still mine!" as Faewyn unleashed her technique, sending what few particles she had managed to gather towards the negafael, Ifalna lunged back, sending out one last blast towards her adversaries and forcing Faewyn to switch to a defensive mahstion. As the heat subsidied, the woman was long gone, a lone, winged figure heading for the distance.

By all counts, Faewyn should have been upset at this development, but she felt strangely calm at the sight, a heavy-headed, drowsy feeling creating a comforting veil between herself and reality. She was vaguely aware of disappointment, just like she was vaguely aware of tottering at the edge of a precariously steep rooftop and being very, very cold, but right now, none of that seemed that important.

"Come on..." she murmured in Adela's direction, ignoring the many complaints of the bruises on her body as she began descending towards the balcony again, "Reid-" a huge yawn escaped the girl, "Reid said we should get some sleep. You can use the guest room...opposite to the bal-balcony." sleepily grasping the younger girl's arm, she half-shepherded her inside the house, depositing her by the door she had mentioned. There were so many things to do and say and think about, but right now only one of them stood out from the din: sleep.

An absent grin appeared on the girl's face as her feet guided her in the direction she had come to instinctively associate with rest. A hand reached out, weighing down the door handle as her pushed the door to her own room open and took a few tottering steps towards the bed before collapsing onto it.

Sleep had claimed her long before the thought of changing clothes or getting beneath the covers even occurred to her.

parallelzero
December 16th, 2007, 02:08 PM
"So you're the new one who's escorting Ellianne, huh?" Reid brushed the voice away. He was too exhausted from the night prior, and his wound still ached slightly. The voice was female, that much was certain, and it sounded deep as if it belonged to a girl who was just beginning to lose her high, childish pitch. "Oi! Lazy! Wake the hell up!" Reid felt a sharp kick to the ribs and his eyes shot open instantly. Whoever this girl was, she was certainly pushy. He blinked a couple of times to clear his vision, and found himself over at the face of a girl, who was resting her head on the bed on her arms, staring at him curiosly. Like Ellianne, this girl couldn't have been much older than himself. Her hair, which was pulled up into a ponytail which reached the middle of her back, and eyes were both a rich red that reminded Reid of the richest and reddest of flames. Her face was cute, too.

"Who're-"

"I'm Flaire, Flaire Teluia. I'm going with you as an escort as well 'cause boss doesn't trust you~" She put on a big grin and got to her feet. This girl was certainly... forceful. Much different than the girls he'd been traveling with thus far. When the girl got up, he got a better look at her. In comparison to Ellianne, who was a few inches shorter than him, Flaire was about his height. For the weather of the town, it was peculiar that she was wearing nothing but a pair of baggy jeans and a white, short sleeved blouse. This mystery became clear when she spun around, showing off her feathered wings consisting of red, orange, and yellow feathers. So she was a phoenix, which made sense, since the body heat they created was far warmer than that of a normal person. This also makes for a deadly fionus user, which most phoenix were. Reid was about to speak, but she chose to speak before him once again. "We're leaving in two hours. Get ready and meet us back her then. And the boss says not to think about running away or else~" With that said, she ran out of the tent.

Reid groaned. He was adding a mute, half blind wyvern girl, and a loud, forceful phoenix girl to the group. The rest of them wouldn't like that one bit. He got dressed, this time putting on his black snowpants and a black coat over his normal attire. If he had to fight in the cold, at least this time he'd be prepared. Hopefully he could avoid conflict today though, especially since his wound still hurt when he moved too much.

BOOM.

Dammit. Reid ran out of the tent, and looked to the direction of the explosion. It was definately in the direction of Faewyn's place. He threw his board down, before jumping on and lifting up, leaving the short trail of wionus shooting behind him. "Mistral."

"Right." The two switched out so that Reid was in her form. He had realized after all of their experiences that both forms had an advantage and a disadvantage. While he retained his true form, he hit a lot harder, but when he was in Mistral's form he could move a lot faster, although he was physically weaker.

It didn't take long to reach Faewyn's and identify the problem. Someone had lit a fire near the books, lighting them on fire instantly. The smell of burning gasoline was also present, probably what caused the explosion. He was about to go check on everyone else, when a ball of dation whizzed by his head, harmlessly hitting a nearby tree. "Long time no see, kid." That voice, it was clearly Cress. "I didn't even recognize you in that form, but I could tell by your mahstion."

From nearby, the padre watched his plan play into action, Cressida at his side. As long as he had that girl, nobody would dare harm him. In the meantime, Kyra and Arturo had found Adela and Aertan respectively, while Villa had been assigned to Faewyn. It would all be over soon...

Loki
December 17th, 2007, 05:19 PM
Silence had fallen when Alicel nodded off again, stretched out on the couch, while Aertan slept sitting upright in the kitchen, his arms folded and brow furrowed, as if he was having difficulty staying asleep. Which he was. He'd always been a light sleeper, but the quick pricks of pain that shot up and down his arm were keeping him wide awake. When the first light hit his closed eyelids, he noticed it lasted for only a split second before Haeon't kindly -and forcefully- moved his left wing to block out the light entirely. The pain in his arm stopped, and he was able to get some regular, much needed shut eye. But this wasn't to last very long, as a boom, an explosion, something of that sort shook him out of his sleep again. He slapped the heel of his palm into his temple, to knock out the exhaustion of being woken up without warning and looked around, just to find his gaze resting on someone he recognized.

"Don't you ever give it a rest?" Aertan inquired, irritation finding itself into his voice as he stared with dislike at Arturo. He blinked though. If Arturo was here, then was Alicel not in the living room? Surely he would've detoured to blow her away? It wouldn't take long, Aertan thought, not even noticing that his train of thought was crueller than cruel. He blinked though, remembering the boom, and smelling something that he could never mistake. Fire.



Meanwhile, Adela was sitting straight up in the guest bed, staring around herself and stepping softly out from underneath the covers. Her wide lavender eyes scanned the guest bedroom and found nothing presenting imminent danger. Satisfied with this, she reached out to open the door, but the distinct smell of smoke reached her nostrils, and she spun around again to grab her messenger bag. She was halfway through opening the bag to grab the gun that amplified her poor mahstion in comparison to the apostle's before she hesitated. If she depended on this gun forever, what would she do without it? She could never rise in the ranks of the Tealian Army if she relied on a gun that wasn't supposed to exist. Her gaze slid over to the white creamy bow and then darted back to the handle of the gun. Whipping the strap of her bag over her head, Adela snatched up the bow and opened the door.

Upon opening the door, Adela froze. She'd suspected it. That was why she'd chosen between her bow and gun. But the feeling of that mixed mahstion made her sick to her stomach. And the signature was exactly the same as last time. She glanced down at her bow, which was quivering along with her hand, which grasped it tighter than ever. Adela tried to take a deep breath. It had always helped during training sessions. Faced with the real thing though, Adela felt trapped, closed in on all sides. Reid had been by her side last time. Adela blinked and used her free hand to reach into her coat pocket. Her fingertips felt the gold butterfly and she relaxed before extracting her hand again and fashioning an arrow out of Dation, while letting her usual precaution Dation leek from her feet, in case she needed a fast shield.

Smoke was probably coming from one of the Fionus users. She notched the arrow in it's place and pulled back on the string of the bow, pressed against the wall as she waited to see Kyra arrive on the staircase. Adela's grip loosened for a split second though, when she felt not Wation and Fionus mahstion, but Lionus and Eation. It was a familiar Lionus, sweet yet cold. But the person who showed up on top of the stairs was not Kyra, nor the person she associated the Lionus with.

"Who are you?" Adela demanded, preparing to release the arrow the minute the platinum haired woman moved. She was slender, and her long sleeves seemed to only accentuate this fact. Her eyes bore into Adela for a moment before she mouthed something, as though she were trying to say it, but sound refused to come out. But the movements of her lips were something that Adela was accustomed to seeing, and Adela narrowed an eye.

"How do you know my name." Adela asked for yet another answer, though this time it was more of a statement than a question, since Adela wasn't really interested in the answer. She was more interested in the woman's bladed wings that seemed to require constant movement. They looked incredibly malicious.

"I'm sorry," The woman finally said, in a voice that was warmer than her pale skin and metal wings, "But you're not my target."

She swept past Adela, who automatically released the Dation arrow when the apostle stepped forward. The arrow wasn't even halfway to it's target before it was crushed into nothing by a sphere of Eation that created a crater in the wall it had collided with. She touched her hand to the door that Adela recognized as Faewyn's room, and the sphere of earth that was still solidified securely against what was once Adela's Dation arrow flew just stray of Adela's face to launch itself at the door. But instead of a loud 'bang' of a door being opened forcefully, she heard only a 'thump', the sound of the sand loosening from it's tight sphere upon impact and crawling into the crevices to open the door for the apostle.

Villa left Adela behind in the hallway, knowing that the girl wouldn't pursue her. She would probably react more to Kyra's mahstion then her own. She stepped softly into Faewyn's room and was surprised to see that the girl was bruised and battered, as if she'd already been in a fight. She curtsied and looked up again, introducing herself with a diminishing voice.

"You may call me Villa. I am the Sixth Apostle. It's a pleasure to make your accquaintence again. May I ask what became of my mahstion bag that I left behind for that Wation user, and whether you would like me to heal you before we engage in battle?"

Alter Ego
December 19th, 2007, 04:15 AM
That morning was not particularly kind to Faewyn. The noises stirred her from her restless slumber, but her thoughts were still hazy as she came to, experiencing the various aches on her body far more vividly than before as the events of the night before raced back to her. She and Isaire had fought the negafael...Ifalna, was it? Twice during that battle, she had been sure that it would all end right there and then. Still, she had pulled through somehow, thanks to both Adela and Typhoeus, but...her heart sank as the bottom line of the situation occurred to her, Reece was gone. She had survived, but failed.

"Reece..."

"You really do have a kind heart, always thinking of others."

Isaire's voice startled the girl for a moment, but her mind soon caught up. Of course, Typhoeus' attack had broken the healing technique too, hadn't it? That meant that the plufael had gotten to recover. She couldn't help a small smile. Typhoeus...could it be that even the negafael had something good in him? Her mood soon descended to gloomy again, however.

"I have no such thing." she muttered to the darkness, glaring at the roof, "Didn't you hear what she said? If it wasn't for me Reece wouldn't-"

"She's a negafael." Isaire interrupted sternly, "She only said those things to create doubt within you."

"Well it's still true, isn't it?!" Faewyn protested, "I did push him away. Reece was just trying to protect me and I threw it all in his face, I-" Faewyn made an attempt to get up into a sitting position, but her abdomen immediately protested with a throb that forced her to double over and clutch it with both hands.

"Faewyn!" had he possessed a body of his own, Isaire would surely have rushed over to steady the girl, but as it was he had to resign himself to words, "You're still injured. Please don't push yourself."

"But Reece will..."

"Both Ifalna and your friend's body are already miles away." Isaire said, guessing her trail of thought and forestalling it, "Setting off after them would accomplish nothing, especially now that Ifalna will undoubtedly still be on alert. Besides, in your current condition there is nothing you could do for your friend even if you did catch up."

"But-"

Isaire sighed, "Look, Faewyn, I know it's hard but you will just have to look after yourself for now and trust that Ifalna will look after your friend's body. She wouldn't do anything too reckless with it, negafaels may be malicious but they are not so stupid as to gamble their own existence. Once you've recovered, we'll organize a search party and set out after him. Alright?"

Faewyn was on the verge of interjecting, but decided against it, giving a subdued little nod instead, "Alright..." she replied, "And Isaire, thank you for-"

It was at this point that the door to her room was blown off its hinges. Despite the pain, the girl managed to fumble her way to her weapon, though if her encounter with the earlier apostle was anything to go by, that probably wouldn't go far in protecting her. Having braced herself for the sight of the ominous man with the black, feathered wings and lifeless blue eyes announcing that he had come to finish the job, Faewyn was quite surprised by the person who came in through the doorway. First of all, it was a girl, a fairly pretty one save for the ghoulish wings and the tattoos, but to compound the surprise,she was very polite -- despite having just blasted in her door -- and even offered to...heal her?

"Erm...I'm Faewyn. Nice to...meet you, I suppose." Faewyn replied, a bit unsure of what to make of the situation, "I-I didn't see any bag...maybe Aertan would know something about that?" she frowned, shaking her head, "And umm...healing would be nice, but..." she knew that she probably shouldn't push her luck, but the girl's inquisitive manner wouldn't give her rest, "Why are you doing this? I mean, all of this. Why did you leave that bag with Alicel? Why do you want to heal me if you've been sent to kill me? Why...why are you apostle people doing this? I know about the graft project, but why would you work for someone who did horrible things like that to you?" her abdomen gave another protest at all the speaking, causing her to wince again, "Not...to say that I mind being healed." Faewyn finished weakly, "But do we really have to fight?" the girl stared at her feet at the end of the statement. She really had no idea why she was saying these things to someone who had identified themselves as an enemy, but there was just something about Villa's manner that made her seem...likable, "I've never really liked fighting."

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

All was dark and silent.

That was the way things were in containment cell 765. Complete deprivation of external stimuli had always been the watchword. The square-shaped room was completely bare save for a single mattress in one corner and a facility for handling...certain other needs in the other, all designed to be as non-conductive for both self-inflicted harm and escape as possible, a heavy anti-mahstion field securing the deal. It was intended as a hyper-secure containment facility for the most volatile of criminals, deranged mahstion users whose powers were as much a danger to themselves as the environment.

Velin found it quite peaceful.

The first apostle's eyes were shut in concentration, his mind meticulously recounting the information it had gained. The familiar features of that Ayre girl, the precious documents he had pilfered from the archives and memorized, the padre's obsession with eliminating the group before they reached Beta.

Beta, that was a country devoted to science, wasn't it?

Then there was the little girl and her quest to find her parents. He thought he had been truthful when he knew nothing of this, but Verdance and Lin...something about those names struck a chord. He just didn't know which one.

Verdance and Lin. What was his mind trying to tell him?

All the pieces of the puzzle were right there in front of him, he could feel it, all but one. If he could only had that, he could put the rest together. It was dangling right in front of him, but he just couldn't reach it. The damnable haze that was his long-term memory was in his way.

Why couldn't he remember?

The apostle shut his eyes tighter. It was a funny thing, really; you couldn't see in the Dation-enhanced darkness without additional effort, yet sheer habit made him shut his eyes all the same. Apparently there were some things you never forgot.

Velin paused in mid-thought, his mouth repeating the words his mind had just applied as a realization dawned to him.

"Never forget."

The first apostle extended his right index finger to its full length, creating a small cut on his cheek and dipping the nail in the crimson liquid that poured out from the gash as he turned to the floor in front of him. He had never been made to sign any paperwork, apostles never were; they were just tools whose actions the priests documented. But could there have been more to it than that?

He might not have remembered what he needed to know, but did he remember how to write it?

Erasing all thought from his mind, the first apostle reached out his bloodied finger until he felt it come into contact with the mattress-covered floor. That had been his big mistake all along: he had tried to think and grasp with his mind what he should sought with his instincts, with his heart. Emotion and instinct...how ironic that he had discarded the key to solving the mystery right at the start.

The nail criss-crossed over the floor in a series of swift, fluid motions and then rose up, its task duly finished. By the slight luminosity of his eyes, first apostle Velin Dahn saw the answer to the question he struggled with for so long, perfectly condensed in a bloody signature on the cell floor:

"Verdance Ayre."


OOC: HOMG! Plot twist! =O Well, sort of. xD The memory thing here has been proven with actual amnesia patients: people who don't remember their names may still remember how to write their signature because motoric memory (memorized movements) is usually not erased by trauma like semantic or historic memory (memorized meanings or events respectively). Since you mentioned that something would happen with the apostles, I figured that I'd better get this sneaky subplot played out while I still had the chance. x3

Incidentally, Velin's name was an ever-so-subtle hint to it. (Verdance + Lin = Velin) xD *Shot for lifelessness*

parallelzero
December 19th, 2007, 04:53 PM
It had been bugging him. Who's mahstion was that? It felt like Rosaline's, but it was dramatically different at the same time... Reid eyed his opponent suspiciously. Something wasn't right here. For the whole few moments that had been engaged in combat, Cress had done nothing but throw poorly aimed blasts of dation which Reid had easily dodged by floating side to side on his board. Was he stalling? If so, why? Reid grit his teeth, still in Mistral's body. He could have switched back at any time, but with the speed Cress had exhibited during their first encounter, he decided speed would be a more vital trait than power until he could find a way to slow him down. "You can stop toying with me now. If you're going to play games, I'll just kill you now." Reid attempted to sound menacing, but he was taken by surprise by how unintimidating it sounded coming from Mistral's voice.

"Are you insinuating that I would hold back?" Cress replied, lying through his teeth. He'd have to fight seriously now, but as long as everyone else stuck to the plan, they'd only have to stall a little longer. "Very well. I suppose I can put a little more effort into it, but only for you, little girl." Reid sweatdropped. He was personally shocked the jokes didn't start sooner, but whatever. There was very little time to react before Cress was on top of him, claws digging into his flesh, his body quickly plummetting towards the paved roads below...

----

"Two men. One uses fionus, one uses wation, two opposing elements. I could give it a rest, but an epic showdown such as this is somewhat epic, would you not say?" Arturo replied to Aertan, his accent as thick and dislikeable as before. Little motion was shown in regards to Arturo as six knives came flying at Aertan out of the darkness, lined with dation. "Too bad there will only be one survivor."

----

"Adela Ciaccio. I'm your opponent." A cold voice beckoned to Adela from the darkness. It was familiar, and while previously very cold, seemed even emptier than it had during their previous encounter. "I, Kyra, submit myself as a prisoner, I have no need to fight anymore, not after my sister was decapitated so that I could live."

Off far in the distance, the padre was well aware of these events. He uttered nothing but the word "Kill her." To Cressida, who shot a long distance blast of lionus at an incredible velocity towards Kyra's location. If it hit her, she'd be dead for sure...

Loki
December 19th, 2007, 05:43 PM
Villa smiled and bowed, rather than curtsying this time, and whispered in a cheerful way, "A pleasure. I was not created for the purpose of fighting. I am merely an experimental apostle, and I'm used as a test subject of sorts." She paused for a moment, thinking about why she was following the orders of the people who made her into such a useless ragdoll, "Miss Faewyn," Villa continued in her hoarse whisper, "If I chose not to stay with these people, then it wouldn't be difficult to force upon two other humans my fate. And if I chose not to stay..." Villa shook away her sleeves and revealed her angular and waxy fingers, long enough to drag just slightly on the floor, "Where could I go?"

She was a monster. She knew it. Anyone who looked at her would know it. Her wings were menacing enough.

"I'm not a fighter." Villa repeated, her long forefinger twitching slightly as Lionus patched up the bruises upon Faewyn, "I am a healer. And so I heal the wounded. Even if I was the one who injured them. Even if I plan on inflicting pain upon them in the future." Villa glanced down at her feet for a split second, towards the first floor, "Aertan uses Fionus, does he not? I remember his signature." She closed her eyes, remembering the small warmth in the corner of the cold prison hall, "His opponent is the Fifth who uses Wation. I'm sure he'll not live long. I hope you'll help me retrieve my mahstion bag when it's through."

She lifted her face toward the ceiling and was silent for a moment before opening her eyes, blank and listless.

"Two people in one." She uttered finally in a normal volume, letting her head hang while an ear-splitting scream rang through her ears, "It's easy to create apostles. So kill the useless ones. Make better ones."

Villa lowered her gaze to Faewyn again as she frowned, changing the subject yet again and asking another question.

"Miss Faewyn. Did you know that Adela is weak against Lionus?"

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

"Sister..." Adela repeated, a surprised look crossing her face as she remembered the apostle who incited her jealousy earlier on, "Wait a second," Adela stormed forward and grabbed Kyra's shoulders, "The other apostle is-"

Lionus.

Such a familiar feeling.

A pair of eyes turned to look at the wall where the guest bedroom once stood, and in it's place was a whirling blast of Lionus. Just one glance was all the time Adela had before she instinctively pushed Kyra out of the way, the tips of her hair turning white as Xaviae shoved the apostle out of the way. She didn't even have time to say the name that bubbled up her throat as Xaviae threw a blast of Dation at the Lionus. It was instantly engulfed.

Searing pain. Instead of a name the sound was replaced with a scream as Adela felt the burn of Lionus. It could be both cold and warm. She hated it more than anything else, because it stung like a lie. The force sent the young girl flying into the opposite wall, and when the flash of Lionus was gone, Adela fell from yet another crater created in the wall with a resonating thud against the ground. Any trace of white in her hair was gone.

"I wonder what it's like. Faewyn, Reid, and Kyra too. What is it like, to lose someone you care for?"

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

"That's why we call it an 'EPIC' showdown. It's supposed to be-" Aertan winced as he pulled out one of the knives he'd failed to dodge, though the sting was only a small throb, thanks to the black mask that was forming around his head.

Geote's voice came when the last piece of the mask was put in place, his voice noticeably deeper than Aertan's finishing the sentence, "Epic."

Throwing his head back, one could see the lower half of the face, normally hidden by the nose of the skull, revealing a distorted and elongated jaw with razor sharp teeth lining Aertan's gums. Plunging his hand into his mouth, Geote pulled out a black sword, before hiding his face behind the mask again, grasping the handle of the sword and setting it ablaze with Fionus, slashing at Arturo, who was standing annoyingly still.

Alter Ego
December 20th, 2007, 07:03 AM
"I-" Faewyn wanted to object to Villa's statement, to say that she was just being pessimistic and that there certainly would be somewhere for her to go, but reality caught up to her. The girl herself was not so horrified by the freakishly elongated arms, but she also had the sense to realize that this was because she had grown so accustomed to Aertan. After Haeon't and Geote, there were very few limbs that could provoke revulsion in her anymore, but the average man on the street...Faewyn bit her lip. Sympathy was about the last thing she had ever expected to feel for an apostle, yet that was precisely what she was feeling right now.

"Villa.." the girl mumbled, instinct compelling her to reach out a hand and place it on the apostle's free one, gently stroking its waxy surface with her finger. She might not have been able to put her sentiments into words, but she hoped that this gesture -- clumsy though it was -- would get her message across; that not everyone thought like she thought they did. Upon hearing the shriek, however, Faewyn's mind was finally snapped back to the situation at hand. Her friends were in trouble, and no matter how much he wished that she could help this apostle, her friends needed help too. Far more urgently, by the sound of it.

"Look." she turned to address Villa, locking eyes with her as far as the other's listless eyes would allow, "Villa, I can't honestly say that I know what it feels like to suffer all the things you have, and with my home in shambles like this I can't offer you a place to go anymore, even though I'd want to, but I do know one thing..." she sighed, "What you're doing...if you just go on like this, it will never end. It doesn't matter how many wounds you heal, as long as this project is going on more people will get captured and more people will get hurt; live or die, these people will make a replacement for you. If something is wrong, you have to oppose it, even-even if you don't know where to go after that. Aertan -- you remember him, right? -- he's got arms growing out his wings, everyone except the priests of his own church treated him like a freak yet he still went against them because he saw that what they're doing was wrong. My mother, Verdance, left everything behind to stop this, knowing that she would probably never return. She DIED trying to stop this." a single tear ran down Faewyn's cheek, but she pressed on, "You're not a bad person, Villa. I know you could have a better life than this, but no-one is going to hand it to you. You'll need to have the courage to go out and find it yourself. Trust me, even though a lot of people may shun you, finding just one...just one person who really, truly cares for you will make it all seem worth it."

Faewyn sighed, releasing the apostle's hand from her own, focusing on drawing out the power from within her soul. Contrary to Isaire's soothing aura, the mahstion presence that enveloped her was far more sinister, however, the girl's skin shriveling and yellowing until it clung to muscle and bone, even translucent at parts, diminishing her already thin frame to an almost skeletal appearance while her fingernails grew out into curved claws. Even the teal color ran out of her hair as it dissolved from ponytail into a disordered mess of greyish white, while her dragonfly wings withered down to two blackened stumps at her back, but the girl's eyes retained their black color. This time, Faewyn was the one controlling the fael, not the other way around.

"I'm leaving." the words sounded foreign coming from high-pitched rasp that was Typhoeus' voice, but the negafael's consciousness remained firmly caged by both Faewyn's resolve and Isaire's powers, so he had no chance to protest, "I've never immersed myself in this power before, and I have no idea what it will do to me, so please...step aside." perfectly order Wionus coiled around her right hand, preparing an attack for the upcoming battle, "We can battle later if it will help you, but right now, when I'm still in control, I need to go help my friends. Please don't interfere...I don't want to hurt you."

parallelzero
December 22nd, 2007, 02:34 PM
OOC: As a warning, this post is going to jump views a lot, and a lot will be going on, so you might need to pay a bit more attention than usual. XD

While Adela had inexplicably made an attempt to save Kyra's life from the powerful blast of lionus by putting her own life at risk, it was not enough to completely protect the apostle girl. The blast, which had not hit it's target, had created a powerful enough shockwave in it's wake to send the lighter girl flying. Her head met a heavy impact with a nearby section of drywall, and she landed upright on her back on the floor. While she was only unconscious, and her two eyes were closed, her third eye glared up at the ceiling as if it was searching for a reason to actually keep the body alive. What was left for a girl with nothing?

---

Arturo put on his best 'surprised' face when Geote took control of Aertan and came at him with his sword ablaze. The entire pull-your-sword-out-of-your-mouth trick was pretty impressive, he had to admit, but it was nothing he was unprepared for. As the sword made contact with Arturo's figure, the body disappeared out of sight. An illusion? No, it was Arturo's raw speed. In those entire two seconds, he had moved from the spot of impact to having his arm twisted around Geote's neck with a knife held sharply to his throat. "Last I checked," he said coldly, "faels bleed too. Game over."

---

CRASH.

A blast of dation rose from the ground into a dome-like shape as Reid hit the hard pavement with Cress still on top of him. To add further pain to the feeling of near-broken bones and flesh wounds from Cress' claws, the apostle had released an unbelievable amount of dation into the air just before the impact. While it had burned Reid's skin in multiple locations, it was also the upwards force of the dation that kept every bone in his body from shattering when they hit the ground. Mistral cried out in pain inside of Reid's head, the cry Reid couldn't bring himself to do himself in fear of showing weakness. He was using her form, after all, and a large bulk of the pain was being sent her way. When the dust cleared, the quickly dulling eyes of Mistral set themselves on the monster looking down at Reid with bloodthirst eyes. His claws were still deep in their flesh, sending constant waves of pain to the boy and his fael.

---

"You sense it too, huh? Well, I guess you would. You can see the future after all..." The red haired girl glanced over at the silver haired one, who had her hand together as if she were in prayer. "There's a storm coming. So let's see if the kid can take the rain." Flaire was, of course, referencing Reid as 'kid', despite the fact that they were the same age. The silver haired girl's eyes shot open wide as she regained her composure, before quickly running up to Flaire and grabbing her arm. "What's up?" Ellianne's one eye glistened with worry as she glanced back up at Flaire's eyes. Flaire knew what that meant. Something was going to happen back at the camp... "We're going back for now. We'll come back for him provided he doesn't die first..."

---

The sad thing was that Cress didn't know what he was stalling for. They had received a private message from Azyla the night before about his location, and he wanted the other apostles to stall while he made his way to their location. They weren't sure of when that was even to occur, and he was taking much longer than they originally assumed. At this rate, the padre was surely to order Cressida to move in, and then it would all be over.

Cress got up, removing his claws from Mistral's flesh, before beginning to form a ball of dation in his right hand. He was going to intentionally miss, but he still had to keep the act up. And then it happened, a sharp prick in his neck before the presence of another dation user became apparent behind him. He wanted to spin around, or to move at all, but he could not. He just began to fall. As he fell, his mind began to feel foggier and foggier, leaving him to deperately hold onto his mind. He eventually lost the battle, and his identity slipped away into the darkness as the naked bodies of a boy and a girl hit the ground where Cress was supposed to.

---

"Game over indeed." A young woman's voice spoke as Arturo felt something sharp dig into the shoulder of the arm he had wrapped around Geote. The woman, who was about 20 with violet hair and eyes entered the room via the window before stabbing the apostle with a strange needle. "This concotion, which we formulated thanks to your friend Azyla, or should I say your friends Azaern and Lilliana. This will leave you immobile as the rest of the drug kicks in, separating you back into the two people you once were." Arturo then fell backwards as he arm slid free of Geote's neck, his identity slowly fading before two male bodies hit the ground. One looked around 19, while the other looked to be around 15, and they both had raven black hair. The woman draped a blanket over the two unconscious, naked bodies before turning a shortsword on Geote's back. "Now, who the hell are you and why are you here? I am Natalia Destato of the Tealian Special Forces, serving under Commander Milo." It was true, she bore a badge much like Reid, although she was dressed in a cloak.

---

"Adela, ma'am! Are you alright!?" The voice of lieutenant Zeibel Syray was filled with worry as he approached the daughter of his commander, who was lying on the ground. It was obvious by the hole in the wall that some sort of energy had forced it's way through the wall, and it was no difficulty for Zeibel to sense what mahstion it was. He was a lionus user himself after all. He proceeded to crouch down next to Adela, channeling healing lionus into her body while one of his subordinates went over to the unconscious Kyra and injected her with the syrum. The young girl's body quickly split back into the form of two young girls, and the man draped a blanket over them before calling for the medical unit to come and place them on stretchers. "It'll be okay now." Zeibel spoke. "Your mother has ordered us to come and rescue you guys. One of those apostle guys, I believe Azyla was his name, came to us looking for help, so thanks to him we were able to devise a remedy for the apostles." His voice went quiet. "But, there is some more alarming information... Your friend, Rosaline Dian, has been turned into one herself."

---

"Bastards, leave her the hell alone!" A ball of fionus flew at the body of a Tealian soldier, which sent him flying back into one of the camp's tents. Flaire spat on the body of the man before grabbing the hand of Ellianne, who had just taken a powerful blow to her head by the man's hand. The entire camp was in chaos. Tealian soldiers, who were in Beta for god knows what reason, had stumbled upon the refugee camp and were capturing as many of them as they could. To make things worse, the Beta militia had also become involved, putting aside the fact that Tealia was in their country just so that they could scoop up whomever Tealia missed! "How the hell can they do this!?" Flaire cried as she pulled Ellianne into a nearby alleyway. All they could do was watch as their friends and family were killed and captured. Ellianne began to cry, but made no sound.

"What the hell are you two still doing here!? Get away dammit!" The voice of the man Flaire affectionately called 'boss' shouted as he noticed their presence. "We'll handle things from here, you just need to get the boy and go!"

"BUT-"

"GO! That boy is your only hope. You'll understand why later, but just go for now!"

Flaire looked away as she took Ellianne and walked, before taking to the air.

---

Reid paniced as the naked body of a beautiful 18 year old girl fell on top of him. He could barely, and he struggled to push her off of him. Her hair, black as night, tickled his face, which was turning bright red. It was safe to assume that the apostles were composed of two people, and that somehow Cress had reverted, judging by the young, white haired boy who lay beside him. Eventually, someone removed the girl from on top of him, scooping her up in a blanket and placing her in a stretcher. His eyes shut temporarily, and the warm feeling of lionus flowed through his body, allowing for movement. Without opening his eyes, he could tell a medic was performing on him, and he could tell who had saved in from Cress. "Sven, you idiot. You could have come a bit sooner."

"Well sorry. I could have just let the thing kill you." Reid opened his eyes to meet the eyes of a long blue haired boy about his age, clad in a white robe with a scythe in his right hand. To make his holy appearance seem even holier, his wings were large and as white as snow. "You're lucky I even bothered with saving my sworn rival." Sven looked up at the sky as it was quickly clouding over. "Looks like it's about to rain..."

---

The padre paniced. Right in front of his very eyes, his whole plot was falling to pieces. His precious apostles were being reverted by Tealian scum, until the only one left was his dear Cressida. Well, he wasn't going to go out without a fight. "Cressida. I want you to go high in the sky and destroy this useless town with all of your power, and the Tealian forces along with it."

It began to rain.

---

"Heh, what did I tell you? Rain is a bit rare in a snowy place like this, though, is it not?" Sven laughed a little as he helped Reid, still in Mistral's form, up to his feet. "We found their base in Alta. any minute now our forces should be arriving there and siezing it. If there any further apostles there, they will be reverted as well. By the way, could you change back to your normal form. As much as I like scantily clad woman, a young girl with burnt and torn clothing doesn't really appeal to me that much." Reid glanced down, realizing how badly his outfit had been torn. the sleeves of his coat had been burned off, as well as the left leg of his jeans, and random holes and torn areas from Cress' claws were apparently.

"Er... right." Mistral's voice turned to Reid's as he transformed back, still a little shocked. "But, how did you know who I was like that?"

"Simple, I met my fael recently as well. Introduce yourself, Sae." A girl entered Reid's mind, with hair the same colour as Sven which fell down to her feet, and a look on her face that made it seem like she was shy, modest, which was quite the opposite of Sven. She was dressed in nothing but a pair of white pajamas, which was quite unusual.

"H-hello. I'm Sae." The girl struggled to smile, before burying her face in her hands. Mistral giggled a little before approaching the girl and taking her hands away. "S-sorry. I'm a little bit s-shy around new people."

"That's okay!" Mistral exclaimed enthusiastically as she put on a big grin. "I'm Mistral!"

Sven laughed. "I guess I'll get along quite well with your fael!"

Lightning shot across the sky, thunder booming shortly after as the rain intensified. Reid felt a familiar presence shoot into the sky. A combination of lionus and dation. "Sven, give me a vial of that syrum." Sven nodded and went over to one of the medical staff for the requested item as Reid found his board nearby, making sure it was still in an okay condition to fly. The scythe-wielding boy handed him a needle, wished him luck, and Reid took off. The higher Reid went in the cold, rainy, and windy sky, the more obvious it became as to what was going on. It was an apostle at work, and it was planning on releasing an insane amount of energy down on the town below.

Reid eventually pierced the barrier of clouds that covered the town below, and gasped for breath. The altitude was unsuitable for a person to stay in for too long, and the bitter cold nipped at Reid like a fire nipping on a piece of paper. The apostle was not visible, for it was engulfed in a ball of spinning dation and lionus. It was perfect, Reid thought, as he knocked an arrow onto his bow, replacing the arrowhead with the vial he had previously been given. He took careful aim, aware that an impressive amount of mahstion would have to be exerted in order to pierce the barrier. The wionus began to bind itself around the arrow, until the arrow itself was glowing a radiant green, and then he let go.

The arrow flew at an impressive speed towards the ball of energy, and upon impact it paused for a moment as the wionus took effect, forcing it through the ball. A girl's scream echoed for miles as the ball shattered. Reid noticed a blur shoot out of the ball as it shattered, and he attempted to revert to Mistral's form, but was too slow. The girl had her clawed hands around his neck in an instant, the needle stickin out of her neck. He did not notice this until after he saw the familiarity of the girl's emotionless face however. He struggled to shout, as his neck was constricted. "Rosaline! What the hell is wrong with you!?"

"I am Cressida, composed of Rosaline and Juliet Dian. The Rosaline you speak of is no more." This was bad. The medication wasn't taking an immediate effect, although there was a glint in the apostle's eye that insured Reid he was going to be okay. The girl suddenly let go, and backed off as she held her hand out to fire a blast of lionus. "You will not get in my way!" He didn't have much time to react, and so he quickly fired an arrow at the energy ball, parting and redirecting it into two separate parts which shot off in different directions. The arrow, unfortunely, made contact with something on the other side.

The bodies of Juliet and Rosaline began to plummet to the ground, an arrow extended out of Juliet's heart. Reid paniced again and grabbed on to Rosline, although the force pulled him off of his board. He pulled off what was left of his coat and wrapped it around her body, pulling her close as they began to spiral downwards. "Reid... It's okay... Juliet isn't your fault... I'm sorry..." Rosaline spoke as she grabbed onto his hand, her eyes opening meekly.

"No... I should be sorry, I said I'd protect you. Looks like I can't even protect myself." He managed a smile, and Rosaline smiled back. Suddenly, after they had fallen back through the rainy clouds, something grabbed the back of his shirt and threatened to tear him away from the girl. It reached the point where they were only holding on by their hands, but that was eventually broken as well. "Rosaline!"

"Reid!" The girl was left to fall alone as a girl with flaming red hair took him away. Luckily for Rosaline though, she fell into a pile of snow nearby the home, Juliet's dead body landing in a tree...

OOC: Well, that was rushed, so some parts may seem a bit 'EEH?" I need you two to deal with Villa.

Loki
December 22nd, 2007, 09:00 PM
Villa hesitated, listening to Faewyn’s reassuring words. They were filled with hope, and it was all Villa could do, not to rudely recoil when Faewyn touched her hand. Nobody had ever touched her hands voluntarily after she’d become this… thing. She didn’t look around herself when Faewyn rushed to Adela’s aid. To live normally. Villa wrenched her head down to glare at her mutated hands. She didn’t want that, if she was a monster. She didn’t want to feel normal and different at the same time. It sounded excruciating. Standing alone, Villa listened, hearing blood everywhere. Her own blood boiled in her veins, and she clasped her throat, falling to her knees as she let out pathetic rasping noises, the boiling blood streaming down her chin as it gurgled up her throat. This wasn’t what happened last time. Last time this iridescent potion had been injected into her, she’d felt warmth. She’d felt her fingers shrinking to a normal, but rather lanky length. This time…

She heard.

Heard the familiar and un-familiar voices of Tealian soldiers.

Felt the disappearance of Cress’ mahstion signature. The Fifth’s signature. Then Kyra’s.

She heard the steps on the threshold of Faewyn’s room, and she spun around, wild terror in her eyes as she shrieked, pleading as blood spurted from her mouth, “PLEASE!!! STAY AWAY FROM ME!”

Kallen held a purple syringe, looking intrigued that the apostle before her was so bloodied up compared to the rest. Villa’s pupils dilated at the sight of the needle, her screams growing in volume as she scrambled away from the solider, begging for no more experiments, no more tests. Salty tears mixed with the blood as she felt her head ripping itself apart from the strange side-effect of the liquid from earlier.

Kallen punctured Villa’s arm with the purple liquid, saying with her usual wry and friendly smile, “This is the last one, promise.”

“That’s…” Villa whispered in fear, “The wrong arm…”

Everything grew dark and it was Kallen’s turn to be surprised and horrified when Villa split. She mouthed the name of the woman who’d been labeled MIA long ago, but only the other solider standing by her side could speak it.

“Healer Shiraume!” He cried at the sight of the blonde woman with blood trailing from her chin and lifeless eyes. Her skin was even paler than it usually was. Kallen threw a blanket across the exposed skin and turned a furious gaze upon the other soldier.

“Go get a healer. Immediately!”

He scrambled out of the room while Kallen turned her gaze back to Shiraume, who’s head and body were covered with the blanket. Her legs were still exposed, from the knees down, as Kallen had simply reacted to covering Shiraume to decency before anyone else happened to stumble inside. She let her gaze trail over to the other body, which lay facedown with arms spread across the floor. From here, Kallen could clearly see a prominent mark on the other woman’s left hand. The unmistakeable mark of a black rose tattoo. The hand looked entirely unharmed, as though the tattoo had never burned before. In fact, she looked completely untouched, unlike Shiraume who bled and looked as though all the blood in her face had been drained away.

“Carn.” Kallen threw a blanket across the chocolate-haired woman’s body, hissing through grit teeth, “Even the innocent.”



~



“Rosaline...” Adela murmured, still feeling the effects of being healed by her most hated mahstion, “She’s…”

But Adela couldn’t bring herself to say it. It was true. Rosaline and herself had never really had the chance to connect. Never really had the chance to talk, or become acquainted with one another. Adela was just another one of the many who’d ended up attacking Rosaline and capturing her. They weren’t really friends.

“Nevermind.” Adela finished, turning her gaze to look at the hole blasted in the wall. Her eyes widened and she sat up abruptly, pushing herself off the ground with her elbow. She looked considerably more lively than before as she grabbed a handful of Zeibel’s hair, a vein twitching in her forehead as she murmured threateningly, (though it was far from being able to be taken seriously, as she was considerably far from the age of being able to do anything ‘threateningly’,) “How many times do I have to tell you to stop calling her ‘My Mother’?? It’s disgusting!”

She started again, and spun around. The second sudden movement however, sent her wobbling back onto the ground. She could feel the metal of the mahstion gun in her bag as she rummaged about, still lying invalid on the floor.

“It’s still here.” She sighed in relief.



~



“You could think of a more graceful way to ask who I am.” Geote snapped, rubbing his throat where Arturo’s knife had been held against it, and turning around without much care to face Natalia’s short sword, “And I have no reason to tell you who I am.”

He glanced at the unconscious, technically, defeated… Arturos and sighed, lifting up his mask a bit in politeness (He seemed to consider this similar to taking off a hat of some sort,) only to reveal a fanged and sadistic smile that seemed to be permanently painted on his face, “My name is Geote. I’m this reila’s negafael. Now, if you’ll wait just a moment…” He sighed and swallowed the sword again, pushing it down his esophagus before bowing, the tip of his mask just millimeters away from the blade of the sword, “And that’s all for today, ladies and gentleman.”

The mask disappeared and Aertan straightened.

“He’s flashy.” Aertan sheepishly half-smiled at Natalia and said, “Aertan Svartel, Ex-Priest of Carn.” His eyes darted to the sword however and he quickly stated, “B-But I’m a traitor, so I’m technically on your side! Er, I am on your side.” He corrected himself.

He felt a mahstion signature disappear. Someone was dead. Aertan’s eyes darted around.

Who was it?

Alter Ego
December 23rd, 2007, 03:23 AM
Not with a bang, but he'd be damned before he went out with a whimper.

First apostle Velin Dahn maintained his calm composure, betraying no sign of these thoughts to the Tealian strike squad that had fanned out around him. They had numbers, but the stench of fear still clung around them, all but one...

"Is that all?"

Like he had done for the entirety of this conversation, Velin addressed his remark to the oldest member of the group. He looked like he was approaching his late fifties, his black hair already grayed in parts and his back with the dark, raven wings stooping ever so sightly, but unlike with the others, there was no fear around him, and his deep blue eyes met Velin's without the slightest flinch.

"It is." the man replied, nodding, "Those were the exact words my sister said to me before she left."

"I see..."

The apostle retained his silence for a moment, shifting his weight just a bit, an action which caused the unfortunate soldier he had pinned between the ground and his taloned foot to wince. Though his right hand was not at the man's throat, he had duly demonstrated that this state of affairs could be remedied at a moment's notice. No-one had decided to push their luck, and the old man had been forthcoming with information. For the past hour, they had probed through the pasts of both Verdance and Lin Ayre as well as the healer's memory could afford, but now...it seemed like his questions on the subject had been exhausted. This didn't mean that he was ready to leave just yet, however.

"This...concoction of yours..." he nodded towards the syringe in the healer's hand, "You say that it shall return everyone to their former selves? No more, no less?"

"On my oath as a healer." the man with the grayed hair replied, "The antidote is being administered to your fellow apostles as we speak. They should be back to normal before long, all six."

"Seven."

"Excuse me?"

Velin's talons drew closer together, his monotone gaining a dangerous edge the likes of which it had never held before, "There are seven apostles besides me: Cressida, Cress, Villa, Ayzla, Arturo, Kyra, and Kira. What of Kira?"

The healer frowned, "Do you mean the deceased girl?"

The pinned soldier yelped as the talons on Velin's feet curled together even tighter, grazing the skin around his throat, "Kira." he corrected in a low hiss, "She has a name."

"There...is nothing we can do for her." the man conceded, "She is dead, first apostle, separating her body into its original components will not change this. Now for goodness' sake, let there be no more bloodshed over this! I have told you what you wanted to know, so let that man go!"

A low, growl-like sound escaped Velin's throat, his hair flashing crimson, but he relaxed the grip his talons held on the man. He still didn't relinquish him completely, however.

"The padre. The one responsible for this. Is he dead?"

"That has yet to be determined." the healer conceded, "But if he is the one who did this to my sister, you have my word that I will do my best to make it so."

"Your sister...you care for her a lot, do you not?"

"I do."

"And you would kill any who would harm her?"

"If that is what it takes to keep her safe."

"And this, too, is love?"

"It is."

For a moment, both men stared at each other. A tiny tinge of teal ran down Velin's hair...and then, without warning, the first apostle grasped the man beneath him with his taloned foot and hurled him forward at his comrades, seizing the opportunity to wrench the syringe out of the healer's hand, his Wionus-powered movement carrying him a fair distance away from the soldiers surrounding him. Several weapons were raised, but Velin lifted his free hand to silence them. Strangely enough, they followed suit, all save for the healer who rushed over to inspect the wounded soldier.

"How ironic..." Velin murmured, his hair now teal all the way to the tips, an occasion thus far unheard of, "...all this time, I was the failure...two failures, to be precise..."

With a deft hand movement the first apostle plunged the syringe in his hand into his vein, not even giving a flinch as the purple substance entered his system. Soon after memories and sensations began flooding his consciousness, emotions the likes of which he never knew he had welling up inside him. Still clinging to his identity for the last few moments, Velin turned to look the healer straight into the eye one last time, "When you see that little girl...give-give her my thanks for a most interesting conversation, and tell her..." the first apostle staggered, clutching his abdomen as he felt like a pair of giant hands was tearing him apart. Despite the pain, an eerie little smile graced his features, the memory of Kira lunging at his back and Kyra rushing over to scold her sibling playing out in front of his mind's eye, "...tell her...I was mistaken on the second question..."

With that, first apostle Velin Dahn finally allowed his eyes to slide shut, his body tumbling forward.

Soon thereafter, the bodies of Verdance and Lin Ayre approached the floor, only to be caught by a number of voluntary hands.

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

Faewyn dashed rapidly down the hallway. She was honestly surprised how fast Typhoeus' body was compared to her own. Despite looking like a rotting carcass, and appearing about as mobile, the long, gangly limbs were extremely flexible and lent themselves to a kind of four-legged shuffle. They could also pull leverage from all kinds of objects in their vicinity, allowing for fast turns and changes of position. It was a rather unseemly mode of transportation, but it was very effective, and right now, that was all that mattered for Faewyn. Just as she was zoning in on the mahstion presence in the guest room, however, she suddenly felt something odd. The presence...well, disappearing wasn't the right word, it was more like it had been...split up, the singular wall of indomitable mahstion replaced by a pair of regular signatures, the others in its vicinity soon following suit. With the background noise of the large presences, for lack of a better word, the smaller ones became more clearly noticeable. One presence, two, three, four, five...there-there were so many. Glancing around the corner, Faewyn noticed that Adela wasn't alone: there were four other people in the room, two of them naked girls, covered by a blanket and apparently unconscious, and the two others...

Newfound hope ignited in the girl's heart at the sight of the Tealian uniforms. Had they been sent...reinforcements? Though part of her wanted to lunge in and see what was going on, the girl contented herself with the eavesdropped news: and what news those were; they had found a method to split up apostles into the people they were made of! But that meant...a smile spread across her face, though the fact that she was still in Typhoeus' body made it look more like a malicious smirk, that meant that the battle was over. The graft project was over. It was all over...

Just then, however, one of the fresh presences disappeared. This could mean only one thing: someone had died.

But who? Alicel? Aertan? Reid? Villa's blood-curling scream snapped Faewyn out of her musings, and even though she should have guessed what it was about, she didn't feel any less at ease. The longer the time she spent in Typhoeus' body, the closer to feral her thought process was becoming. Thinking rationally was becoming harder, all she could feel was the scream, the steady absence of a mahstion presence, the feeling of the wooden floor as her clawed limbs scraped across it. She wanted it to stop, all of it! It should have stopped now! The good people were here, that meant that it should have been over! That meant that no-one, no-one should have been screaming like that!

Without offering a word of explanation, the girl -- still in her negafael's body -- shoved both Kallen and the soldier accompanying him aside. Once again, Faewyn had come too late to the scene, the two unconscious women on the floor confirmed that.

"Villa..." a tear ran down her cheek without the girl even fully knowing why, "...it's over, then." she, or he as one might have perceived it, heaved a heavy sigh. She should have felt relief over the fact that the poor apostle's torment was over, that this was nearing conclusion, but the feral instinct wouldn't give her a moment's rest, compelling her to take another action: grasping Kallen by the shoulder with a firm grip of her clawed hand and glaring her straight into the eye, "You, take care of her. Both of her. She, they, have been through a lot, so if you cause any trouble I swear I'll find out where you live."

Faewyn had no idea why she was feeling so hostile, or why she had felt the need to bark an order for something that Kallen would probably have done anyway. It felt so...justified, even as she felt revulsion over the act. Suddenly, the girl shook her head, as if trying to dislodge the strange thoughts swimming around her mind. This was fael possession; she was becoming more Typhoeus-like by the minute and she needed to get out before it was too late.

"S-sorry..." Faewyn mumbled in a flustered tone, confusion and doubt evident in her eyes as she relinquished her grip which, she noticed, had left a set of scratches where she had held her hand, "I don't know what came over me, it's all just so confusing-I-" she grasped her head as what felt like a dagger piercing her forehead overcame it, "Shut up, you!" she wailed, "It's a good thing that it's over! Good! I-" she turned to look at the now probably very much confused Tealian, "I've got to go! Excuse me!"

Without any more attempts at explanation, Faewyn lunged out of the room, once again adopting the quadrupedal shuffle as she darted past the soldier and the healer he had managed to summon and down the stairs, not stopping long enough for either to overcome the sheer shock.

"His opponent is the Fifth who uses Wation. I'm sure he'll not live long. I hope you'll help me retrieve my mahstion bag when it's through."

The fading signature...right before it, hadn't there been another negafael signature around?

She didn't think, she didn't walk down the stairs, she just leapt, effectively ceasing her slide across the living room floor by means of the claws, which were starting to feel more and more convenient by the minute, as she performed a neat 180-degree turn to get a clear view of the room.

"Aertan! Alicel! Are you-"

Then she saw it all. She saw the two unconscious bodies on the floor, she saw Aertan -- still very much alive -- she saw Natalie, but above all, she saw the sword in her hand...and where it was pointed.

"You..." a low, warning hiss escaped Faewyn's throat, mahstion gathering around her clawed hands, the girl gnashing her fanglike teeth threateningly at the officer, "I won't...I won't let you hurt..." this person...this insufferable person. She was supposed to be on their side! How dare she? How dare she do this? Point a weapon at Aertan! Aertan out of all people! The one who had never displayed disloyalty of any kind! A bright yellow spawned in the middle of Faewyn's black eyes as she crouched backwards, preparing to lunge, how dare that woman?! She would get what was coming to her...she'd be dead before she even had time to blink.

"Faewyn, don't!"

Isaire's voice rang loud and clear through the haze in her mind, causing the girl to halt. Briefly, she stared at her mahstion-drenched hand, as if seeing it for the same time.

"What you're trying to do...it will only get Aertan into trouble."

"But she's threatening...she's threatening him!"

"And if you go through with this, she will do more than that!"

"But it's unfair! Aertan...he's only trying to help someone he cares about. To pick on him of all people it's-it's not fair! I'll-"

"Give them reason to do it?"

Faewyn hesitated, the yellow slowly retreating from her eyes, "I..."

"Because that's what you'll do if you go through with this. You'll confirm, in everyone's mind, that he's a monster. It doesn't matter whether or not he's the one who has hurt this officer, if she's found dead after pointing a sword at him the rest will be assumed."

"I..." Faewyn's pose relaxed slightly. All of this made sense, but just thinking about it...it made her head ache somehow, "I...just don't know..."

"Yes you do." Isaire retorted sternly, "These are not your thoughts, Faewyn. This is what Typhoeus would do. What would Faewyn do in a situation like this? Think!"

"I..." the mahstion around the girls hands dissolved, both clutching her head instead. The throb of the headache was now all consuming, she couldn't see, she couldn't hear, she could barely think...only one thing, only one thought cut through.

"Stop it!"

With that single shriek, the haze around Faewyn's mind lifted, the sound of countless heavy chains constricting around something echoing around her mind as Typhoeus' ghoulish body shedding off like the skin of a snake and the dragonfly wings grew back to their former state. For a few moments, the girl simply lay on the floor, panting from the exhaustion before she finally realized the situation and got up to her feet, giving Natalia an apologetic glance, "Terribly...sorry...about that." Faewyn managed, "I'm...not used to...handling my negafael." she reached into the pocket of her cargo pants and pulled out a small badge which she displayed to the woman, "Faewyn Ayre, temporary recruit of the Tealian special forces. Aertan has been helping in this mission as penitence for crimes committed in the service of Carn. He fought the apostles just like the rest of us, and I can say with absolute confidence that there's no question of his loyalty. I'm sure Reid would do the same if he was here, so please...could you please put that sword down, m'am?" her hand gave an involuntary twitch, forcing her to grasp it with the other, "Weapons...excite my negafael just a bit."

parallelzero
December 23rd, 2007, 01:43 PM
Sven's ice blue eyes surveyed the skies, ignoring the whole issue of the two girls that had fallen from the sky. Something had plucked Reid out of the sky, and from the colouring of the wings it seemed a lot like a phoenix girl than anything. But what amazing strength for a young girl to possess in order to carry a boy away. But where were they going? The direction was indeed in the direct trail towards Carn, but why? He had an important decision to make now. Would he continue to attend to his duties and write Reid off as a deserter, or would he abandon his duties as a SPEF agent and pursue his friend, rival, and fellow SPEF agent? Speaking of soldiers, where the hell was the other half of the batallion? Had they got lost downtown or something? What became of the Commander?

"Sven, have your men lock this felon up. It seems he was the one in charge of the apostle operations behind the King's back." A woman's voice sounded from Sven, which in response he spun around to face Commander Milo. "Also, you have two days to find Reid Davies, I have much to discuss with him. You leave now, understood?"

"Yes ma'am!" Sven agreed forcefully. He waved his hand towards the padre, and two Tealian soldiers took him off the commander's hands. "Lieutenant Zeibel recently sent me a message about locating your daughter, ma'am! Now I beg your leave." Sven left with a big grin on his face. The decision had been made for him, apparently.

---

"Oww! Oww! Miss Adela! I'm sorry! I'm sorry!" Zeibel shouted as Adela took hold of his hair which in turn made him lose his composure. As the sound of highheels clinking quickly approached, the lieutenant regained his composure. "Commander!"

"Glad to see you're well, Adela." The girl's mother spoke. She would have attempted to hug her, but an unconscious Rosaline, bundled tightly in a thick white blanket, was thrown over her back, the girl's navy hair drooping over and covering her face. "Thanks to the efforts of you and your group, we were able to successfully lure the thread out into the open and trap them. However, it seems Carn's princess wound up dead in the process. We've sent for Carn's royal envoy to pick up this one, who will hopefully act as their new princess. What disturbs me most, though, is that the entire apostle fiasco was executed by a small rebel group. The king knew nothing of it." It was the truth, Carn and Tealia had worked together in order to create a fitting strategy for the apostles' defeat. "Also, Reid is gone. I sent Sven to trail him, however."

---

Natalia raised an eyebrow at everything that was taking place. Transformations, increased powers, it seemed everything they had been briefed about faels was true. It was very... bizarre. The woman lowered her weapon. "Very well. I have other duties to attend to anyways." She picked up the two boys that were originally elements of Arturo, and left.

---

"Put these on, kid. You look like a mess dressed like that." The phoenix girl giggled as she threw a bag of clothes. Ellianne, who was watching the two from the other side of the small wooden room could not help but agree, most of his clothing was tattered and torn, and it was hard to convince the ship's captain that he wasn't a bum. She couldn't wait to see his reaction when he took them out of the bag. It wasn't fair though, that Reid could wear normal clother while they had to travel in cloaks so that their wings were hidden. But, Ellianne figured that was just the way the world worked.

"What the hell! No way!" Reid barked in Mistral's voice, which was a sign that Mistral approved. In the bag was a pair of tight jeans and a white blouse that was designed for a girl, along with a few other needed items such as undergarments and hairties. "I am NOT dressing up like a girl!"

"But your fael seems to disagree, considering I'm assuming you didn't willingly change your form. Besides, it's only for a couple of days until we reach our destination." Flaire's voice was inflicted with humor as she spoke, jumping back onto one of the three cushy beds in the small room, her hair bouncing with it. "Don't forget you're wanted in Carn for kidnapping Rosaline, and now Tealia will be after you for deserting. You'll need an alias while in public, at least for a little while."

Reid had to agree, and he hated himself for having to agree. In the end, he was forced to change in front of the two girls in Mistral's body, as they gave him a makeover. When it was all done, Reid was rendered a 15 year old girl with green, wavy hair, decorated with two white bows, green eyes, and she was dressed in the outfit previously mentioned. Her fingernails had been done in red nailpolish, and she was wearing a pair of white flipflops.

"Oh my god Reid you look so funny. This must be so humiliating for you! Don't you look all cute and dolled up?" Mistral laughed continuously for the following three hours.

"SHUT UP." He rebuttled, his face quite read and fists clenched.

OOC: Wanted to end this post on a funny note with all the serious stuff we've had going on. XD

Loki
December 23rd, 2007, 06:27 PM
Adela let go of Zeibel’s hair the minute she heard those stupid heels clacking on the floor. Her face wore a look of annoyance, exhasperation, but when she turned around to face Commander Milo, her face was all innocence. She only half listened to her mother’s words, thoughts riddling her mind with each syllable that was spoken.

Her mind patched up the holes that her mother left, deciding that Juliet was dead, since her mother implied that the limp and unconscious Rosaline was alive. Adela let her eyes trail to the ground, knowing that Aertan was probably downstairs. She remembered hearing about his initial goal, the whole reason he was with them. She wondered if he’d go back to Carn, now that Juliet was dead. No, he couldn’t. He was a traitor now, or at least, he’d called himself one. She didn’t really care about the King. He was a stick in the mud anyway, and all the better if he was shown that his control over his own country was incredibly flimsy, whether he had that stupid tattoo branded on everyone or not. But the last thing was what interested her the most.

“Reid is gone?” Adela repeated, looking dumbfounded. She nearly moved to make sure that the necklace was still safe in her pocket, but she resisted. Her mother didn’t know anything about it, and with so many uncertainties rushing through her, she felt as if touching the cold necklace would do little to ease her. Sven was going after him. She barely knew Sven, to be truthful. He’d never done anything that might make her feel as if she needed to play a prank on him, or investigate his background.

“I see.” Adela replied finally, standing up and brushing herself off, blinking and shaking the dizziness from her head. She bent down and heaved her bag onto her shoulder, “That’s rather rude of him, to just up and leave like that.”

“I’m going back, if there’s nothing else.” She added, before grasping the railing of the staircase to support herself. She wanted to personally deliver the news to Aertan, because she knew that nobody else really knew why someone from Carn descent was helping out with this cause. But she had to find out the story herself first.

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

Aertan watched Natalia leave. He sighed half in relief, half in annoyance towards the departure of the woman, and her stubborn personality respectively. Stepping past Faewyn, Aertan pulled one of the kitchen chairs that had been overturned in his and Arturo’s short battle back into an upright position.

“Thanks for that.” Aertan stated, turning to face Faewyn, “Are you-“

“Aertan,” Adela’s voice came. She stood next to the doorway, leaving the threshold empty, “I thought you might want to know that we found Juliet.”

He started, about to ask where he could find her now, but he showed only an expression of surprise on his face. It was all Aertan could do, not to let his gaze turn back to Faewyn. But Aertan was crushed by his next thought. He’d vouched that he was a devout believer of Tylonstus to the King. And to Juliet. Here he was, without a left hand and both tattoo’s branded on Geote and Haeon’t gone. So he was a liar.

“That’s…” Aertan began awkwardly, “Good.”

“No,” Adela replied, “You’ll find it far from good.”

Aertan immediately thought of the mahstion that disappeared. He made to move through the door to confirm his suspicions, but he was stopped again. He closed his eyes, avoiding looking anywhere near Faewyn as he spoke quietly.

“I’m going to go see her.” He didn’t wait for anyone’s answer as he moved into the living room, moving quickly but smoothly. Aertan’s strange calmness was betrayed though, as anyone who saw his shaking hand as he steadied himself on the wall could tell that he was far from calm. He stared blankly through the front door, and nothing obscured his view from the body he recognized immediately. Silence overcame him, though he suddenly slapped his hand over his mouth and shrank away from the door, turning so that the wall hid Juliet’s body from view. Soldiers had retrieved the body from the tree, and Aertan was sick to his stomach.

Geote replaced Aertan’s steadying hand on the wall, and Haeon’t was still twisted around, looking through the door and watching the soldiers cover Juliet’s entire body with a white sheet.

He felt nauseous, but frozen like stone. Aertan slid down the wall, into a sitting position his hand still firmly clamped over his mouth as he stared at the floor as though it were some sort of terrible monster. Everything seemed like a terrible monster.

Aertan couldn't even go back to Carn anymore.

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

“I didn’t manage to say goodbye.” Alicel sighed, sitting in one of the smaller airships that was heading back to Tealia with the bodies of random apostles. She tried her best to ignore them, as seeing two humans who were once one made her uneasy. And what made it even worse was that Alicel was headed back for Alta, without a word. She’d just up and vanished, and she felt bad for that. But one of the soldiers had told her some unsettling news, and she knew that everyone would understand… mostly everyone anyway.

“Well, they’ll know where you’ve gone, a soldier should inform Commander Milo anytime now.” Replied one of the healers tending to Shiraume, the only woman Alicel recognized amongst the others.

“What’s wrong with her?” Alicel asked after a pause.

The healer sat back and watched Shiraume’s uneven breath, “I’m not sure. We’ll have to wait for a more experienced healer to come take a look at her, but she reminds me of someone who’s taken too many different medications all at once. The body goes into shock, you see… I can keep her system going until we get to Tealia though.”

Alicel nodded and turned back to staring out through the window. The short conversation between herself and the healer had distracted her from the never-ending replay of that soldier’s words in her mind.

” Apparently, the mailman couldn’t find your location. Thankfully, I remembered that you were with that group that had gone off to look for Carn Royalty, and so I asked the mailman to delegate the task to myself. We were off to search for your location anyway, since that apostle showed up.”

Alicel crushed the ripped envelope in her hand and furrowed her brow, turning away from the healer so that she wouldn’t see her face.

”It’s wonderful to hear you’re alright, Alicel. Things aren’t doing so well over here, y’see, Reks has been a bit ill. I don’t know what’s wrong with him yet, and the doctor doesn’t know what it is either. He says that there might not be a cure for whatever Reks has, but don’t worry yourself, I’m sure the regular doses of rest and chicken soup should set him straight. Come back when you get the chance, but don’t rush yourself. I’m sure he’ll hold out until you return!

Much love,
Ella”

Alter Ego
December 24th, 2007, 02:10 AM
"Oh, you're welcome." Faewyn replied, relief evident in her features now that the conflict seemed completely and utterly resolved, "I'm just glad it's all...over."

Her optimistic proclamation was cut short by Adela's arrival and her message, and when she caught a glimpse of Aertan's devastated expression, Faewyn thought she had a pretty good idea of what had happened...and the identity of the faded signature. She remembered just how devastating her mother's final message had been, but compared to seeing someone you cared about dead...the girl shuddered. No-one should have to go through something like that alone, no-one.

A few weeks earlier, it wouldn't even have crossed her mind, but now it was the most natural thing in the world. Without a single word, Faewyn walked over to her friend, taking a seat on the floor next to him and, still not offering any form of explanation, giving the ex-priest a hug.

It didn't matter what kind of person you were, at some points of your life you just needed a hug.

"Aertan..." she mumbled, "I'm sorry...that you had to see that..."

She could have elaborated, but right now she felt like saying anything else would just be needless detail that he didn't need to be burdened with. She had wanted to say that it would all be alright, but right now that seemed like a big, fat lie if ever there was one, so she contented herself with expressing her support the one way she knew how.

It was not until a commotion broke out outside that she finally looked up.

"Look, m'am, you shouldn't be here in your condition! This is still an unstable area and protocol decrees-"

"Good sir." announced an authoritative female voice that made Faewyn doubt her ears, "I have spent the past year in the body of a man and two more under interrogation by radical extremists. This is my home, and if what I gather is correct, you have unlawfully incarcerated and force-drafted a girl who not only happens to be below legal drafting age but is also my daughter whom I would very much like to see. Now. What does protocol have to say about that?!"

"M'am, please calm-"

"I assure you, sir, I am pointing this mahstion at you in complete calmness and composure. Step ASIDE!"

Faewyn was dumbstruck, staring in disbelief at the figure marching across the street, straight past the equally dumbstruck soldiers who were quite positive that while apostles may have been part of the job description, they had certainly not signed up to deal with hysteric mothers. Despite being clad in nothing but one of those paper-like, white outfits that they gave hospital overnighters, an ill-fitting grey overcoat, and a pair of slippers, she held a certain air of dignity about her as she strode across the snow-covered streets and towards the door, her mid-back length, teal hair flowing out behind her. Though they looked somewhat shriveled from misuse, even the near-translucent dragonfly wings at her back maintained a regal air to them.

"M-mama!"

Faewyn just couldn't help it, upon seeing the mother she had taken for dead and gone stand there, alive and indignant as ever, she couldn't help charging towards her, nearly toppling the woman over in her enthusiastic hug as tears streamed out of her eyes. From up close, the slight extra paleness in her already light pigment was a clear indication that she was indeed still recovering, but she returned the embrace nonetheless.

"Faewyn! Thank Ophelia you're alright." a slight grin appeared on her face, "From what I gather, that's quite an appropriate expression in this case..."

"Mama..." the girl sobbed, "I-I thought you were dead. The journal-it said-"

"Shh...I know." Verdance replied, stroking her daughter's head, "It looks like...sometimes...probabilities are just probabilities."

"Mama...is papa..?"

"Still resting." the woman replied, chuckling slightly as she added, "You know what a sound sleeper your father is. Don't worry, he's alright."

Faewyn couldn't help a small chuckle at the remark, even as she still had a few sobs to quench, "So...it's really over, then? The graft project?"

Verdance nodded, "It's all over." she replied, "We can all get back to normal in a few days. Well..." she cast a meaningful glance at the ruined house, "...after we've done something about that, anyway. Let me tell you, Faewyn, I'm really looking forward to reading that journal of yours."

Back to normal...a blissful smile spread across the girl's face. After three years...three long years, she had finally gotten to hear those words. Everything had turned out alright in the end, after all.

Faewyn paused in mid-thought, her thoughts returning to Aertan, still hunched over at the doorstep. No, everything hadn't turned out alright, not for everyone, "Mama..." she mumbled, turning to whisper something into her mother's ear. The whispered conversation continued for a few more minutes, punctuated by the occasional "I see." and nod, but eventually, mother and daughter disentangled, the former walking over to Aertan with the latter trailing her in a slightly sheepish manner.

"Excuse me." the woman said, "I know that this is not a good time for introductions, but I'm Verdance Ayre. Faewyn's mother." she reached out a hand in introduction, not seeming to care whether the gesture was returned, "I...am sorry for your loss. I never had the pleasure of getting acquainted with princess Juliet, but I hear that she was a good person, especially for one of her position. Now, I gather from the absence of a tattoo that returning to Carn would not be a prudent option for you, and judging by the manner of these soldiers it would seem that Tealia would not be much kinder in this respect. I can understand if this feels too sudden, but I'm sure I could find an apartment for you here if you wish. It's a harsh climate, but we don't care much about people's pasts around here and we're used to most kinds of people. As long as you do nothing to threaten the order, it's live and let live, and I'm sure that Faewyn..." the girl peered shyly from behind her mother's shoulder, like most children did when their parents were arranging something for them, she had no idea what the ex-priest would make of her gesture, but she just knew that she had to do what she could for him, "...would appreciate your company. You needn't worry about paying; this is the least I can do in return for you looking after my daughter. Besides, I am -- in a way -- responsible for the graft project escalating to this point, so it's only fair that I face up to the consequences. What you make of this offer is up to you, but if there's something we can do for you then don't be afraid to-"

The woman's words were cut short by a violent coughing fit which caused her to double over, both Kain and Faewyn rushing over to her.

"Mama!"

"Verdance!" exclaimed the healer with the graying hair, who had been observing the situation from afar up to this point, "I know I promised not to interrupt, but if you stay in this frigid air any longer in your current condition-"

Verdance sighed "I know." she interrupted, turning to Faewyn while Kain motioned in one of the soldiers for carrying help, "I know. Fay, it's alright. It's just a cold...and some small side-effects of the antidote. I'll have to get inside for check-up, but I'll be back soon, alright?"

The girl gave her a sceptical glance, "Promise?"

The woman chuckled in response, offering her a weak smile and a pat on the head, "Promise." she replied, "And Faewyn, I'm...proud of you, I really am. Take care of yourself for a while longer, alright?"

Faewyn nodded, "Alright." she replied, nodding in response to the departing figure. Right now, at this particular moment, there were very few things that could have dampened her mood. Mama and papa were back and the apostle trouble was over. The thought of Reece still bothered her, but right now Faewyn retained an optimistic attitude. Reece was strong, he'd hold out, and she'd get to him as soon as possible. Now that mama was here, there wasn't really any task that the girl could deem impossible anymore.

Sitting back down next to Aertan, Faewyn remained speechless for a while, casually placing a hand on the other's back to remind him that he still wasn't alone. Eventually, the need to say something to her friend overcame her, however, "Aertan?" the girl asked cautiously, tilting her head towards the ex-priest, "What...are you going to do now?"

Loki
December 24th, 2007, 01:38 PM
The hug that Faewyn had given him had eased his spinning head, but he still stubbornly refused to remove his hand from his mouth. He knew it was rude, to not reply to the words of comfort that Faewyn was speaking, but Aertan felt as if the minute he removed his hand, he might not be able to hold in a pathetic sob. He lessened the pressure on his mouth when Verdance appeared though, as his relief for Faewyn was almost- almost overcoming the memory of the dead body. So, all was well for Faewyn. That was more than enough. He lifted his gaze when Verdance addressed him, and let Haeon't recieve the handshake enthusiastically.

He let his hand drop to his side as he listened to her proposition, surprised to say the least. Such a simplistic solution. And yet, still no words came to him. He gave little to no reaction when Verdance began to cough- though he was worried that even through all this, with Faewyn's mother back and everything, that it wouldn't last. He was somehow reassured by how calm Faewyn herself was though, and he thought. Just let thoughts run through his head. Faewyn's question of what he was going to do was certainly the number one thing that he tried to sort out first. What, indeed? All of his belongings were back at the church. He could ask Jetane to get them for him. No, Jetane would just send some soldiers after Aertan's butt to get the reward money.

"I'll stay here." Aertan finally replied with a smile, "I won't ask you to pay any rent though. I couldn't, since you've done more than enough for me just by letting me hang around. I can pay. I've got old wages from helping out with funeral services and weddings, so until I can find a job here, I'll use that. So that's my plan."

Aertan paused, thinking of Jetane and wondering how long it'd take the hunter to track down the ex-priest, "I'll stay with you as long as I can."

parallelzero
December 24th, 2007, 04:21 PM
2 years later...

"Dear friends,
How are you all faring? I know it's been two years since we last crossed paths when my sister died, but that's the reason I decided I should attempt to come into contact with you all. It may or may not satisfy you to know that I am well. When my father originally attempted to instate me as the new princess, there was much uncertainty from the people, although that has seemed to pass. I spend most of my time out in the garden playing my flute, which seems to get me strange looks from the aristocrats, but that's fine. I'm not quite used to the red carpet yet, and personally I'm not that fond of it. The big flowery dresses that I am forced to wear are my least favorite part of the role.

Aertan, you owe me big time. I was able to aquire a pardon from my father in regards to your offences. If you see it fit, you can return to the country at any time. Also, as he told me when I last met him two months ago, Reid has neglected to keep any contact with anyone other than myself in regards to his location. As you all should be aware, a country known as Flazure was recently established. He's found a role there, although I can not disclose as to what for security reasons.

With the formation of that country, many things have begun to go wrong. There is civil unrest amoungst Carn's citizens in regards to both that country and Tealia, and I fear it may escalate into a civil war. Though through my attempts along with Prince Ryan, I hope to achieve some form of peace. Now, I really must go. I need to attend a meeting with my father...

Best regards,
Rosaline Zeli Dian"

"Feh. Just because we ran into her a few months ago doesn't mean she can just go ahead and mouth of our location whenever she pleases." Flaire paced back and forth before her two friends, who were positioned rather uncomfortably on a steel bench within her office. She was dressed in a pink dress, and her flaming red hair was down in a wavy fashion "The nerve!"

Reid stood, his height now significantly greater than it once was. Dressed in nothing but a white cloak, the boy took the phoenix girl's hand with his own. "Oh, don't be like this! As the future empress of this country, you shouldn't be acting so immaturely. Not to mention we have a date tonight and it won't be very fun if something this small stresses you out!"

"I know! I know! It's just, she's one of the people who isn't trying to help our cause. People in her country still enslave our kind!" She threw her hands to her sides, and Ellianne sweatdropped from the sidelines. This was nothing new for the two. They had been squabbling since day one, but lately it had seemed a little less hostile. Things had been bad for a while after Flaire found out she was the only heir to the phoenix royal family, but the three had managed to push through. Things would turn out fine, and there were many more adventures for the trio to overcome in the future. She didn't need to be a fortune teller to see that much...

Fin.