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Showing content with the highest reputation on 09/20/2019 in all areas

  1. 6 points
    @Aleksei Odelia didn’t mind Austere’s attention to her. In fact her cheeks flushed a little more each time he demonstrated such outward affection. Each kiss to her hand left her weak at the knees.....or perhaps it was something else that did.... regardless Odelia glowed brightly. Her skin, her hair, even her eyes held a warm shine that even a star couldn’t rival. Killian stole her attention away from her increasingly weak feeling legs and her husband. “She certainly is.” Odelia agreed with him. Especially since the’d found her in terrible shape..... the damage was as bad on the inside as it was out. A scar would grace her face from the still healing wound. A jagged slice that carved its way from the outside corner of her left eye to her chin. “I’d rather her look like a scarlet letter than be back where she was.” Her voice trailed off as she caught sight of the treat he brought her. “You are always thinking of me!” She quickly accepted it and ate it. Sweet delicious treats were her lifeblood at the moment..... and how odd Killian arrived once again with food. Just like the last time she got feint.....she looked at him suspiciously. Did he know? She couldn’t risk him blowing her sweet surprise. His conversation didn’t dwell on it though and instead he wanted to know why she was with Austere instead of gossiping. More importantly, how she hadn’t died of boredom yet. Truth was she didn’t care to talk about face cream. She adored Austere so much she found even his most ‘dry’ moments enjoyable. “Face cream!” She let out one of her increasingly common and infectious laughs, “No - no it’s nothing like that!” Her husbands attention was finally returned fully to her and Odelia was more than pleased at the notion. Even more so that Killian could keep a leash on her sister - to which he declined. “You would be doing me a favor if you did.” She gave him a pointed look, “and none of that ‘not doing justice’ nonsense. You just don’t want her to tease you again.” She looked over at the crowd her sister was entertaining. The girl knew how to work a room. Chin tilted up, back straight, voice commanding the attention of those around her. “At the very least keep her from boobytrapping the servants hall again or something.” She muttered. Austere’s question drew her admiring gaze up to him. Transformed in seconds from the piercing look she gave Killian to Austere. She gave him a soft smile. “I am a little warm actually.” She admitted, “I could do with some air....” Really what she wanted was Austere to sweep her away and shower her with sweet sweet affection. Riha was mid entertaining her group of ‘friends’ she’d just made. She was reading auras, something that always drew attention when she was at a party. A glimmer in the air caught her attention. Just within her peripheral vision it cast a dark and gloomy glow. Suddenly her hand shot out, straight towards one of the guests faces before disappearing right into thin air. She was sunk into the other realm, right up to the elbow. Fingers nearly clamping down on the wings of that miserable fairy she sensed was skulking about. The crafty creature just barely escaped her grasp. She let out a sigh and pulled her arm out, it slowly materialized with a blue tinge to it. Brushing it off as nothing she resumed her work reading auras. Making jokes about pesky fairy’s all the while.
  2. 4 points
    Coming back to Ursa Madeum was always a bittersweet affair. For a year of his life he had poured his heart and soul into the land that had been given to them by the Veluriyam government. When he had arrived, the island of Thraece was a polluted, dying wasteland. The people had mostly fled, while those who remained barely eked out a living fishing the mostly dead waters. Raveena, his mother, and himself had helped to heal the land, bring hope back to its people, and bring the island back to life both environmentally and economically. Then the new government had asked them to leave. In some ways it felt like a betrayal. As though he and his family, his nation had been used until they were deemed no longer necessary. Rationally he knew that the King had good reasons for asking Hyperion to leave; and the two nations had parted as friends. But it still irked him when he would look in the direction of Thraece and be reminded of the land he had given his all to rebuild. But that was the bitter. The sweet, he found, far outweighed it. Before foreign influences were expelled from UM, Grant had forged a romance with a member of the ruling House Mythal. Delphine had come into his life during a time of great turbulence; and had been like a shelter in a storm for him. The pair had fallen in love during their first meeting, and that love had only deepened in the time since. She was the reason why he kept coming back to UM; bending time and space to travel great distances in an instant. Currently, he found himself laying on her bed, watching her try to decide what mask she would wear to the party. He had only managed to get into his trousers, and his lover was similarly dressed as she fretted over the costumes. "Do we really have to wear those silly things?"
  3. 3 points
    Ilyana stood in front of the entrance to the bathroom for several minutes, determining that this was the only logical place that the queen would go from where she had lost sight of her. She refrained from entering initially, giving the queen her much needed space though doing so caused her to become rather impatient. Shifting to place her weight on one leg, arch of her hip accentuating her curvy but petite frame, she heard a voice trying to reach her through the din of the establishment. “What is such a small beauty doing in a place like this?” A man with piercing green eyes slid through a group of dancing girls and approached rather swiftly. Glistening tawny flesh was muted a bit by the darkness of the club which was meant to make things more comfortable for the eccentric guests of this establishment. The man was well dressed, with a silky black shirt and black pants that were fitted. He towered over Ilyana with a height of six and a half feet and approached with a mischievous smile that he thought he wielded to his benefit but Ilyana clearly wasn’t impressed. “Nothing you should concern yourself with.” “Oh? Well ok then. My apologies. Let me get you a drink to make up for what seems to be an intrusion.” Admirable attempt to placate in Ilyana’s eyes but she would not soften up for him…not today. “Don’t waste your time.” She needed a place to exit, one that would grant her the freedom she needed from this exchange so she started to walk toward the bathroom now. Weaving through the moving groups of people, she reached the threshold of the area before she felt a hand attempt to slide along her waist. The palm slid itself along her abdomen which fueled an instinctive response motivated by anger. Obtenebra repelled the man’s hand with a forceful push from her abdomen which caused the man’s center of gravity to fail. She took the opening with her small frame to flip the man over her shoulder with so much force that his body collided with the rough wall inside of the bathroom. The thud of bone colliding with the wall would likely be heard by Gabriela before she would see Ilyana emerge from behind the corner and press her heel hard into the man’s chest as he sat hunched against the wall in pain. Most of her left leg lay exposed as she pressed against the man though it was clear Obtenebra did its best to keep her modest. “If you want to be able to walk much less breathe, then I suggest you make sure you leave here, keep your hands to yourself, and I better not see your face again for the rest of the night.” Her heel rose toward his face and she pressed forward, causing a cheek to rub uncomfortably against the wall behind her. “Do you understand?” She managed to get a single nod which was enough of an acknowledgment for her to move away from the man. Her eyes snapped toward Gabriela near the faucet, a look of righteous anger still lingering on her face though it noticeably softened before she addressed her. “I came to make sure you were still ok, Gabriela, but I apologize if I ruined any calm you might have gained from stepping away.” She turned to see the man struggling to a stand to get ready to leave. His green eyes met with her roiling black which only served to motivate him to leave even more. Ilyana turned to look at Gabriela with a peripheral gaze this time. “I will be just outside if you need me beautiful…” She would begin to step out just after the man stumbled his way out and wait for the queen to emerge so they could return to where Rodan was waiting and hear her final decision.
  4. 2 points
    I shared the link a few weeks back and you liked it supes hahahaha
  5. 2 points
    @supernal Its an app! I helped Kickstarter it. They reached goals like cyberpunk and steampunk to add in the future. @jaistlyn Yyesss. It is pretty good. You won't be disappointed!
  6. 2 points
    @supernal App! It was on Kickstarter and is now in beta, I’m not sure if they are opening it for public sale yet. @Fierach Oh you’ve already gotten your access code? I’m waiting for it! :3
  7. 2 points
    This is just a heads up! I had edited the very first post of the IC Thread to include a few items for everyone to enjoy. This is an open event, so you all post at your leisure and deffff enjoy yourselves on Milo's dime. If any of you need help sliding on into the festivities, please don't hesitate to ask for help! Just have general questions/concerns/hopes/dreams? Reach out to me and I'll get to you. To anyone who wants to find an elemental stone, do some arm wrestling, or speak to the dryads, tag me in your IC post and I'll play a few parts, or you can take control of the NPC - I'm comfortable with either choice. HAVE FUN! BREAK THE FINE CHINA! DON'T BLOW THINGS UP! I'll be dropping a few posts in the thread throughout the day ❤️ @Pasion Pasiva @Wade @MichaelTheLightBringer @Dauner Light @SweetCyanide @danzilla3 @Fierach @Alexei @The Hummingbird @Thotification
  8. 1 point
    Ursa Madeum has made its decision, a new King sits on the throne. To celebrate this momentous event, you are invited to mingle, drink, and be merry. There are no restrictions as to who can come! Commoners and nobles of all varieties are welcome to enjoy this celebration in comfort and peace. The Castle of Andelusia and its King hopes to see new and familiar faces. Thread: Masquerade! Every face a different shade! Where: Andelusia, UM. What: Masquerade ball open to the public! Posting Expectations: This event has the potential of getting large, so the posting order is pretty open! Tag all the peeps you're talking with to make things less confusing. If an order is needed for your group, then discuss that among yourselves. The Deets: This is a party for everyone to come in and have a good time! I expect some people will want to talk politics, and Milorian is open to entertaining those kinds of talks, but that's not what this ball is all about. This is an opportunity for the new King to get to know everyone and vice-versa. I'm all for shenanigans, but I will lay down the law if things get a little outta hand - please don't break the castle. The Castle: Red is off-limits; green is open. MAP BY @Ataraxy SO HE FEELS GOOD. Things to Note: A Council of Dryads from the Free Marches are holding a meeting in the garden to discuss the current state of nature of Ursa Madeum. They are open to inquiries and are partial to acorns. The Lounge has been occupied by a group of dwarves who are far into their cups for the night. They are holding an arm-wrestling competition; the winner gets a prize. Participants: Open How-to: Dice Rolling Thread - Look at the result for the D2. If a 1 is rolled, you won! If a 2 is rolled, then you lose that round. There will be 3 rounds per-participant. You need a 2/3 win to get the prize. A mourning fairy has taken advantage of the famous festivities. Its victims experience sudden feelings of grief, and if the fairy is not caught, the grief can turn one mad. Catch the fairy and receive a reward. A witch is dropping elemental rune stones around the castle! These stones can be used to enchant weapons, armor, or yourself; only two stones per participant, please. Stones: wind, water, fire, earth
  9. 1 point
    Just so I'm sure, your character, and the enemy he was fighting are both from the Halo universe, correct?
  10. 1 point
    jaistlyn

    Child's Play [Nightmare Descends] OOC

    Also, unrelated, I love this profile pic of yours LOL
  11. 1 point
    danzilla3

    It's kind of like a heist

    No, I feel your argument about why he should hit the gas a bit is reasonable, so I don't mind editing. I'm more concerned about where this is going. What are we building towards? Because this is starting to feel like T1, and I don't like that.
  12. 1 point
    Zashiii

    Child's Play [Nightmare Descends] OOC

    🤔 Oh...wait....I did factor in the -1 to sanity that's the reason for meditate as my ladies started at -1 sanity this round. But I'll edit out the calm instead 😂
  13. 1 point
    supernal

    Young Justice 2010 [animated]

    I’m speculating baselessly here but maybe they downplayed him to play up Savage and his whole thing? Too many genius, rich arch villains side by side makes one rub a chin
  14. 1 point
    Dolor Aeternum

    Young Justice 2010 [animated]

    That and just some of his choices. I feel he is a lot smarter than they portrayed him to be. I mean they did show how manipulative he is and I am glad they referenced what he did in previous seasons too but I feel they just did him wrong in Season 3. I think it is a combination of the voice acting and the scripts that just rubbed me the wrong way. I am not some huge Luthor fan or anything but I definitely did not jive with his portrayal on this go around.
  15. 1 point
    Clear as day, the sun peaked out no further with an abundance of native birds swimming the blue sky. Unable to make it in time for the actual dedicated feast itself, he stuffed himself with Fuji red apples and sencha for energy and whatnot on his way to Predator's Keep. Today, he traveled far and wide from Genesaris for the Feast of Blades tournament as a testament of his skill and prowess of 200 years. This being the Soke's only appearance in such worldly events for glory, honor, any of the likes - his years of Tsujigiri were long behind him, but even so he still couldn't remove the stained past of his Saburai swordslaying. The audience parted as a sea at the trio sight of Cobran wolves and a Swordslayer in their forefront bearing dual steel swords in their respective scabbards fastened by the brown obi tied to his waist trekking towards the arena. Beneath the visage of a largely brimmed Kasa ash black tendrils cascaded down his back in abundance with all the shorter hairs falling across his face as bangs to conceal his barely noticed iridescent white eyes. Apparently the Datsuzoku warrior was more than capable of handling himself, these extra sets of ears, eyes, and paws were more servant than bodyguard, or companion - after slaying their alphas Kenshi captured and domesticated every last one of them as Wolves of Jigoku under the Okami clan. There were nearly five hundred of them in total. The crowd seemed rather uneased by their sheer presence granting them clear passage as the foreigner approached plain in sight in an indigo summer robe with a body of light chainmail underneath, wooden geta sandals and a large three foot metal polearm resting with it's curved one foot blade against his spine in a downward position to the ground. It was a strain to imagine that a legendary Swordslayer, a man of battle and bloodshed was amongst the people of Predator's Keep, breeding grounds of the Order of the Force Majeure. Slowly, did he and the escort walk up now in range of the large pillars holding the foundation of the heightened arena in tact. He ran a tender hand over the material of the wooden plank upon the ground, allowing his fingers to feel into the grooves, it's sturdiness, dimensions for his own clarity before stepping a few feet to the rear as his escort and he would finally part ways. To the people of PK it was evident this moment that the Swordslayer was blind, yet many would wonder from this point just how an effective fighter he would prove to be in the Trueblade event. Taking off to an unpredictable burst of speed sandaled feet kicked from the ground and he now rushed for the large pillars. Spewing dirt and sand everywhere in a few paces the distance was soon closed short. Springing from the ground Kenshi propelled himself forth in a leap into the air with his leading foot to place itself upon a single pillar, he continued in his direction with a small application of his ki applied to his soles running up the plank without the heave of gravity pulling him down. In this moment he felt completely, weightless. His rosary beaded left hand reached to grapple an edge of the arena floor as he hoisted himself onto said platform, singlehandedly launching his body over the edge so he physically cleared the obstacle above him. Landing with a vibrating thud across the spacious wooden floor, the stench of the unfamiliar opponent now lie in front of him. Standing by the edge of where he descended there wasn't any words to escape his lips. No, seems the people been waiting enough for the first match to commence. However, delivering his adversary a slight bow went following as Kenshi lowered himself in an arch briefly enough to rise himself in the same motion. He stood silently with his ears first, allowing them to guide him safely through the loss of his sight, his pupiless whites remained lowered momentarily beneath the Kasa concealing his countenance. @Twitterpated
  16. 1 point
    "Now this King knows how to throw a party, however not everyone is throwing themselves that much on the dance floor." He muttered to himself, his sudden out loud thought wouldn't have become a reality if he didn't feel the aura within the people getting it on and started to move their hips and throwing their hands in the air. It must have been because of the beverages, smirking to that revelation, how amusing he thought it was. People needed just a little push to finally losen those walls and enjoy the Party, something Jack never had a problem to do, in any party he was in. However, he felt like the Demon Parties were a tiny bit better and well that was just personal preference, the Women or one should one say Demoness, were less, how one might put it....not so clothed heavy, courtesy of the Demons, they couldn't resist it. It's mostly because of his father, he used to throw parties no one really complained, it was for everyone and everyone did not mind somebody else's business, they were always so polite mostly because his father had strong rules he enforced drastically. He wanted for everyone to go all out but boundaries needed to be respected in a way and fun was a current theme in his parties, why would a Demon Lord throw a Party? Well, even Demons need to loosen up as well and just do things for the hell of it, they may be celestial beings but no one said they don't have a bit of humanity to them and Jack had that Half Human side to him, because of his mother he felt like the music would rush through his blood streams and veins while his heart pounded heavily in his chest. "Time to spice things up a bit." He drinks the rest of his whiskey in one gulp and suddenly a Waiter came and offered him some more. "Alright." He takes the other glass of whiskey which was much stronger and gulps it all down and puts it on the Waiter's large plate filled with drinks and besides them was Jack's two empty glasses. "Thank you." He gave him a slight smile and the Waiter said that the King hopes he enjoys the Party. "Of course." His casual low voice took over before he walked through the crowd, while he craved power and could sense it immediately he also enjoyed having human emotions flow through him it was like a drug to him, sadly they didn't have any though he shook his head and though again the King was a respectable man, he didn't want his guests to be limping back home while Jack could take it not everyone was like him. What also caught his attention the more he went into the crowd he noticed a few new faces, to name a few that caught his attention was Odelia with Austere, they looked like a couple, surely it seemed interesting besides them was Killian. Though there was a certain woman that caught his attention and that was Riha with her small crowd or group of friends she managed to persuade with her looks or otherwise such as charisma and strong character, while he wasn't too close to examine her, the dress she wore was enough to get the Male audience going. He saw Dauner as well while he made his way through this crowd that was mostly talking and that was a bit of the problem, for him, this was a Party, everyone should dance, he loved music and dancing. He could only thank his dear mother because of this, she had a certain rhythm in her blood that made her dance to every kind of music and had good ears for music. He inherited his parents sides very well, how lucky he was but he didn't complain, at all. He took a deep breath before he started to walk like a male star, every man had his way of showing his perfect physique and Jack's one was simple in theory, as he opens his coated jacket collars a bit more wide, exposing the beginning of his collarbone and pale skin chest though not by much because the rest was covered by his t-shirt. Holding onto the collars he slightly bend on his waist to his right side and then left while he walked with a straight back with his footwork in perfect sync, already getting the attention of some of the ladies that wowed at him, he looked damn right hot but sassy. Withdrawing his hands and bending them on the elbow not far from his pectoral chest, he snaps his right handed fingers and points with his index finger while having his thumb slightly up because of the motion at a part of the crowd which was filled with mostly women and men and says. "You..." He then does the same thing, snapping his fingers with that same gesture towards the other part of the crowd with men and women and says. "You..." Snapping both of his hands with his fingers forwards towards the dance floor and says. "Follow me...to the dance floor.." In his own casual way that had a certain hot demeanour and sassiness. It may have been his good looks or overall bold behaviour that he called a large crowd towards the dance floor and he didn't even use his powers. Now these people felt like they needed someone to snap out of reality and do whatever that someone pleased and now that was Jack, of course some of the higher up people who were there may notice his accomplishment with just a few words as he was starting to rock the dance floor with very complex footwork while shaking his shoulders and tilting his head to each side and doing a spin that got the crowd wowing, the women were the loudest as his hip, upper body and leg movements got them excited and now dancing with him as well, little by little getting close to him, getting attractive towards him. "Now this is a party!!" He said loudly that got the crow wowing with his overall excitement and joyfulness and his voice was loud enough for the crowd to hear and possibly have a few loosen up and just dance as he was having the time of his 3000 year old life, whatever reason it was that he came here, he didn't care but he was glad they invited him over. OOC: Man these posts got me adrenaline rushin' through my veins, I love dancing and I wanna thank y'all for having me here, it's a great honor and I'm loving your posts, they're pretty cool. Keep that up volks! And let's get this party going, wooo! PS: Also everyone is welcomed to interact with my character, so ladies I'd better hurry before Jack gets taken 😂kidding...but I'm looking forward in interacting with y'all if possible.
  17. 1 point
    Fierach

    Reroll!

    Reroll!
  18. 1 point
    Especially since Thurgood Singlance wants to do conventional, legal business with Norkotian manufacturers...
  19. 1 point
    supernal

    Reroll! Character Pixel Art Generator

    ;-; I messed up. I didn’t get it. I should have got it. I’m sadgry
  20. 1 point
    supernal

    Reroll! Character Pixel Art Generator

    This is awesome! App or website?
  21. 1 point
    Wade

    A Breath of Fresh Air

    Eli knew what to watch out for. He’d been looking for the signs since entering the cave. Hewn stone, trails in the sand, a steady stream of bubbles in a pond. Ground shifting underfoot. A flash of gold before- “Move!” Eli broke formation as the claw erupted from the earth like a geyser, circling around to the right while Halisera lunged forward to attack. He dropped his torch on a flat rock, quickly swapping it out for the spear on his back. The arcane glyph continued to power the torch, providing enough light to illuminate the barest features of the cave. Spacious, he thought. Wide enough to accommodate the creature’s massive bulk. The ceiling was so high that he could only make out the end points of a few gleaming stalactites. There was little on the ground save for a few oddly placed rocks—shelves that he could climb, a lone pillar he could potentially use to hide. The Brumak shook itself free, sending rocks tumbling to his feet. It hissed at the lot of them, a bubbling, clicking sound that reminded Eli of a wood floor creaking. He charged for its hind legs, each one almost as thick as a man’s torso. If he could pop one of its joints, retreat, then hit its flank again, he could whittle away at its mobility until it could barely stand to support its own weight. Whipping around, much too quickly for a creature of its size, the greatshell turned to face him. It raised a claw and Eli brought up his shield. Crack. The blow sent him staggering, as if he’d been brushed by the weight a charging horse. Pain lanced up his arm, his shoulder, working its way into to his chest. “Shit,” he growled, reorienting himself a few steps away. His shield hadn’t splintered—Brumak shell was nothing if not tough—but he could feel the long of swath of bruises, swiftly purpling against his arm, pounding his nerves like hammer blows and making it difficult to focus. The Brumak hissed again. The strange, clicking sound echoed in the dark. When it set its beady eyes on Eli, he bent his knees, ready to dodge to the side. I’m going to have to drop the shield. As expected, the Brumak charged and Eli rolled to where his torch sat. It was enough time for him to undo the straps of his shield and toss it someplace where it wouldn’t get in the way. With his right hand free, he dug around in the pouch cinched to his waist. It came back out holding a ceramic ball, cracked but still mostly intact. “Stand back!” he shouted, lighting the ball’s fuse against the torch. It caught, sparking wildly, and he lobbed the alchemical device at the creature’s chest. Come on… The bomb exploded, a violent flash of light that left spots in his vision. Bits of rock rained down from the ceiling, showering him in dust and pebbles. The Brumak roared, suddenly frightened. A tiny section of its shell had shattered to expose flesh—raw and milky white, tensing at the center of a hole crusted over with char. “That could be our opening,” he announced, hefting up his spear with both hands. He only had one more bomb, so he’d have to spend it wisely.
  22. 1 point
    Venus Sprite

    Back to Square One

    Lol @ the kobolds arriving just as Torie mentioned them. If it's immersion breaking would you like me to change it, @Jotnotes?
  23. 1 point
    bold words for a corpse-tree
  24. 1 point
  25. 1 point
    With impeccable manners, Zenahriel dined quietly on the soup, taking care not to make a sound. No slurping, no loud swallowing, not even the click of spoon against bowl disturbed Rou’s speech. It was actually quite impressive, especially since his eyes did not once glance at the soup to guide his movements; his gaze remained focused solely on Rou Ji. She said she would be frank, and she was. The explanation and offer was short and guileless, unadorned with pretty words or any needless complexity. Unfortunately, the simplicity did not make any of it more pleasant or endearing, especially not to the Black Queen herself. For all that Rou insisted that Gabriela could only benefit from her position as a ruler of Umbra – a generous offer indeed – the words still seemed to carry within it a veiled threat. This was not what Rou meant, to be sure. Zenahriel could see that, could feel Rou’s sincerity and effort to remain calm and proper. But what was meant and what was heard were two entirely different stories, and he barely covered a pained grimace as Rou finally finished. To say the Black Queen was not receptive was a slight understatement, and every word she returned carried the message that they were to leave without further ado. That they, whoever they were, whatever their station, whatever their message or meaning or past relations, were unwelcome. High Lords did not blush easily, if at all. Nevertheless, Zenahriel felt himself grow uncomfortably hot when the Black Queen voiced the greatest lie he had ever heard. It was then he could not help himself. He had restrained himself thus far, meandering away the time with the soup, now almost gone. He could do no more, and a great deal less… which he did not care for. He stood. The spoon clattered back onto the sides of the bowl. “Your Grace.” Stern, mirthless, horribly respectful and angry at once. “Yes, you have your family. Your son will benefit from your parentage and as such receive the finest of education wherever he is, whatever the place. With blessings given from all who know, he is safe from harm.” His eyes narrowed. “It is improper to leave…your guests… to themselves… but you are welcome to leave. You are Queen, after all.” His voice lowered, almost a growl. “But do not lie to me that you are happy and want for nothing.” He spun around to face Rou. “We are dismissed, Rou Ji.”
  26. 1 point
    “Yeah boy, say your prayers,” the thug puffed up his chest as he continued to standoff against Xartia. The fire began to cloak his body, hovering just an inch off his skin and clothing. There was a loud crack as he jerked his neck abruptly to the side. Xartia might’ve stood and stared, had there not been 250 volts of electromotive force passing through his body from the palms of the electric wizard. The man abruptly jerked out from a flanking angle, his fingers tingling with live current that made its way into Xartia’s body. Seizing this opportunity, the first thug cocked his fist and sought to land a right hook across Xartia’s pretty face.
  27. 1 point
    The Hummingbird

    One Day Soon

    Dark and sweet-smelling, the smoke floated around the room for a few moments more before finally fading. Slowly but steadily the temperature returned to normal, warm and comforting after the chill of the magic she had spun. Even so, there was a lingering touch of her sorcery, heavy in the air, an odd feeling of strange origin that would not soon pass. Such was normal with the black arcane; it was not easy to rid all traces of it once used. Kassandra sat easy and serene as she was when she began her soothsaying. Her green eyes, light again, watched Roen as he moved to the window and withdrew the curtains. The moon and starlight washed the floors in a faint veil of silver, followed by a whisper of wind that rustled the boughs of trees outside. It was going to be a cold night. Briefly, Kassandra wondered if Roen would have her leave. The weather, whether aggressive or pleasing, did not often trouble her, but she did prefer sleeping in a bed. Not that any wish of seeing her gone was unwarranted, considering what had just occurred. She smiled as Roen spoke, his words quiet, in the tone of a confession, as one might take when revealing sins to a judging priest. Pushing back a stray lock of auburn hair, she considered only for a moment. “No teasing, my Lord. I think you’ll find out soon enough, but anything you have discovered this night will undoubtedly come true. But, perhaps not in ways you expect. Many tellings of the future are… abstract, shall we say? Not so easily interpreted. Often, when people try to understand the visions they see, they end up disappointed. Some happily, others… not so much,” she chuckled. One hand reached out, taking hold of the bowl still filled with infused water. The blood of a devil… what a wondrous thing. She brought the water close and sniffed it. Yes, there it was. Fire and brimstone, ash and coals, power and hate and grief above all. She had not been mistaken. “Milord Roen, next time someone asks for your blood… do not be so hasty to give it.” She smiled coyly. “Just some harmless advice. For now…” She upended the bowl, sending the water splashing over the fine carpet of the room. It hissed, as if it had been boiling, but when it ceased… the floor was dry, and there was no stain nor spot of moisture to be found. “A courtesy, since I think I might like you.” She stood. The glossy folds of her dress shimmered as she walked to stand next to Roen. She looked out at the evening sky, so of mysteries and secrets. Every second that passed, a person died. Every second that passed, a person was born. The continuation of time, life and its impending doom, it was all so very fascinating. It was that fascination that had turned her into what she was now. “You weren’t too far wrong, Roen,” she said lightly. “How does it feel, to have a witch in your household? I will leave if you wish, and leave you unmolested further, since you’ve proven to be so interesting… but I will say, the magic I wove for you tonight is rather taxing, and perhaps worth more than a simple bed for the night?”
  28. 1 point
    Hello! I'm new here. I came here looking for RP,and to make some online friends. I'm 14 years old, and I prefer semi literate role-play. I have school until 3 p.m. , so I won't really be able to talk before then. I would like help making original characters, since I only have two for this genre. My main character is Harlow, who is a horse like water dragon with white and blue scales. My other character, River, is a water nymph who would be classified as chaotic good. She's the type of person who would absolutely trash a place, then leave a note saying 'sorry for the damage.' Well, i'm glad to have found this forum! I hope we can be good friends, and role-play together often! Bye for now, H_R.
  29. 1 point
    AngryCacti

    Winter Stroll OOC

    @Moon Owl Just a reminder that (I think) it’s your turn! It’s been a little quiet so I just wanted to check in. ~~apologies to everyone for the spam.~~
  30. 1 point
    Aleksei

    Breaking Ground (Wild Hearts)

    His reply drew a smile across her soft face. She was beginning to understand Cerebri more as they spent time together; his quiet manners, his rough demeanor, and also the gentle undertones he tries to keep hidden. Reading people is not her strong suit, and she would never claim to be a 'people person,' but it's hard to not see who a person is or maybe when they are relaxed around you. She felt instead honored that he would allow his guard to be so low around her. Especially since there was little to the elf that would make anyone interested in her. He held her hand as if it were the most natural thing in the world to do, and it caused her to giggle against the rip of her mug. Such interactions were always looked down upon; if a person even so much looked at a slave, they would be targeted as traitors. Yet here, it's reasonable to hold someone's hand, speak to them in a friendly manner, and interact as if they were equals. Cerebri was, unknowingly, teaching her that it was okay to be this way - okay to have companions. The two made their exit, gathered up the 'goods' and were quickly back to the base. During the small ride, the elf would glance at her hand from time to time, feeling suddenly comfortable in the situation that is her current life. Most would not think it ideal, but she was enthralled with this sudden sense of freedom and sharing it with potential friends and acquaintances. Inside, Jack laid out the entire plan, leaving the elf with nothing to do. She looked up to Cerebri, curious to see him play the part of the 'good cop' - it wasn't a part really meant for him. Covering up her small laugh, she exited the room while the men took care of their business. Eliza is not intimidating and would look foolish if she even tried; thus, there is no reason for her to really back the men up unless she had to play the bleeding the heart. The best thing she can do is ensure that they both have a quiet place to work, and with that sat next to the closed door and erected a small shield around the room. For now, she will wait.
  31. 1 point
    O_O Abraxis was to notice something; she was in a closed area!!!! Her eyes bucked wide open, as she was to lower head; it was just like at the Asylum. "Gray, where are you? Is he going to take you away from me yet again? I can't see my Graymite……." "What the hell? Is this guy some kind of an idiot? She doesn't do WELL in closed spaces!!! Benaires, DO something!!!" Protested Graymite, as he was trying to get over TO his Charge, but since the energy field was surrounding just the TWO of them it was rather difficult to do. Ben only shushed everyone, now looking to see what was gong to happen next. "Just chill for a moment; I want to see what she is going to do next. Just give it time..." "YOU are trying to take my Gray AWAY from me!!! I will NOT LET YOU!!! Gray...help me!! I hate this place...get me OUT OF HERE!!!" Abraxis yelled out using her Telepathic Broadcast. She then sank to her knees, crying and sobbing, now on the floor. She felt powerless; just like in the Asylum!!! Dr. Fowler then stepped towards the enclosure, now glowing a deep Purple. She reached out one arm and opened her hand fully. The Purple mist was to completely envelop the surrounding area that had the metal poles into the floor. The purple mist began to instantly NEUTRALIZE the waves of divine Mana as well, allowing for her to enter the small area, where Xylex and Abraxis were. She then knelt down to help Abraxis to her feet and to get her BACK to Graymite so that he could console her. Dr. Fowler only giggled a bit, but then she said outloud, "Oh that's enough Xylex...what are you trying to do? Make the poor girl have a Nervous Breakdown? Could someone reset this room for me? Obviously this is going to be much more difficult than I guessed. I'm going to start on some more food while you all think this through. Come on Lady Abraxis, I think this is enough. Graymite, take her to the Study so she can calm down. Spend some time with her okay? As for YOU Plushy-boy, Xylex, your methods are not working. They are having an OPPOSITE effect on the girl. I'm a Doctor no doubt, but I'm also a DAICHON, and I told everyone here that this is a place of Research, History and healing. I will NOT tolerate any kind of defacing, damage or disrespect to this mansion, and that goes for YOU as well Plushy-boy. Why don't we all eat and get some sleep for tonight and try again in the morning? Ben, talk to your friend; he is very, very vipid and irresponsible WITH his powers, and that is very disappointing. He is supposed to be your ACE? Oh, I'm sorry, your ACE was SUPPOSED to be Ami Mizuno!!! You are SUCH a fucking IDIOT Ben!!!! Rebecca, can you help me with the Grill please?" Rebecca nodded quickly, as Avus, Avixis and Luminous (Who just showed up to bring in reports to Dr. Fowler) were to all exit out of the room, leaving Ben, Xylex and Ptera by themselves. Ben was busily reading through a Holy Tome, glasses now perched on his nose. Ptera walked over to Ben and sat down next to him, now picking up a Holy Tome to begin to look through the pages as well. "What are we looking for Master? Uhm, you never said anything about it." Ptera asked cheerfully. She had the exact same kind of Mental damage that Abraxis was dealing with right now, but HER damage had been completely repaired and eliminated by Benaires. So why was Abraxis' illness different from Ptera's? "Those violent episodes are not just happening out of the blue Ptera dear. There is SOMETHING else going on inside of Abraxis, and I am going to find out WHAT it is. It's as if she becomes just a totally separate entity when she has a violent fit. I';m beginning to think that it's not even HER that is doing this overall, but I can't seem to pinpoint what is triggering the fits of rage though. She WAS getting better, and NOW, oh I don't know what is causing her to be so nervous and resistant. All of my years of training her and now she's a mental HEAD Case. What in the hell did they DO to that girl in that fucking Asylum?" "Good question Master. I'm not sure what else we can think of to try to begin to break down her barriers. Without Graymite being by her side, it's all hopeless you know. How do we keep her from panicking and yet, how do we reach into her mind without invading it? There is more TO this than what SHE is letting on. Does she NOT want to get better and live a better life? So we cannot get her inebriated then? Mental connections trigger the violence, but she won't answer many questions when asked to do so. She keeps playing back the exact same answers from when Erika was working on that case with you all. Noone can be THAT mentally damaged to the point that they are just a walking Vegetable you know. We have to get CLOSER....we have to find a SAFE way to get her to talk more about what's going on inside her mind."
  32. 1 point
    Let me know who you're bringing so I can go through the catalogue of characters and pick the right one. I guess Milo's first act as King shoulda been: TEAR DOWN THE CASTLE AND BUILD ME A NEW ONE RI NAO!
  33. 1 point
    Am I welcome in Ursa Madeum?!
  34. 1 point
    Tyler

    Tyler's Reference Card

    Norkotia General Information Organization Type Constitutional Federation Founding Document(s) Norkotian Constitution (Norkotian Confederation) Union Charter (Norkotian Union) Head Of Government Chairman of the Norkotian Council Commander-In-Chief Grand Executor (18,597–18,598 WT) Legislative Branch Norkotian Council Military Norkotian Military (18,597–18,598 WT) Bureau of Internal Security Societal Information Capital Norkotia City Official Language Common Currency Norkotian Dollar State Religion Directivism (18,597–18,598 WT) Common Religion(s) Directivism Gaianism Eldritch Witchcraft Major Holidays Kerzentag (January 1st) Prophet's Day (April 19th) Union Day (September 25th) Historical Information Date Established 18,368 WT (as Norkotian Confederation) Date Reorganized 18,597 WT (as Norkotian Union) (Ask Me Anything) "Now, ya'll ain't from around here, but I use to rustle cattle 'bout thirty miles nor'east of 'ere, an' I can tell ya that ya don't wanna give people 'round 'ere the time to be ready fer ya. Every mother an' child seems tuh 'ave a gun in some towns." ―Jack Murray Norkotia, officially the Norkotian Union and formerly the Norkotian Confederation, was a nation located in the Plateau of Zuhl region in central Terrenus. It was originally formed by a human tribe known as the Norks, who were fleeing across the continent from the oppression of Levas the Cruel. After a period of early peace, the Norks eventually came into conflict with the native humans and Elven Vulks. The Vulkish Wars would go on for many years, eventually concluding with the defeat of the Vulks and the establishment of the Norkotian Confederation. The confederation prospered for many years, spreading varying degrees of civilization across much of the plateau. During this time, the country's identity as a nation that relied on technology rather than magic was affirmed, and coal, oil and steel became the materials upon which Norkotian society was built. Once introduced, firearms quickly replaced swords, bows and crossbows as the favorited weapon among the Norkotian people, and indeed became perhaps their most defining cultural staple. Eventually, the prosperity of the golden age also slowly brought corruption, and Norkotia began to suffer from an influx of drugs and other vices. Thanks to the efforts of political and industrial leaders, a massive division between religious traditionalists and secularists began to form in Norkotia. Under secularist leadership, many vices such as prostitution, gambling and most drugs were legalized, causing them to become cheap and widespread. This eventually resulted in a massive backlash in the form of the Norkotian Nationalist movement, under the leadership of Joseph Tynes, which promised to restore many of Norkotia's old laws and traditions. Tynes was elected chairman, and under his rule, many secularists were ousted from power, in both the public and private sectors, and many of the formerly legal activities and products were banned once more. Tynes then established the Norkotian Union, in an attempt to better unify the Norkic settlements spread across the plateau. With the rest of Terrenus in chaos, Tynes hoped both to build a significant army to defend his homeland, but also to begin expending Norkotian culture and influence into the rest of Terrenus. His plans were thwarted, however; after his invasion of Forsthaven resulted in an numerous scandals and significant loss of public approval for his leadership. He was ousted from power by the new government that was elected later that year. Following Tynes's departure, the Union cut many of his military programs, but maintained many of his social policies. As a result of these laws, accompanied by laxer security and an influx of migrants, organized crime quickly became a force to be reckoned with in Norkotia. History Origin The exact origin of the Norkic people was never credibly confirmed, though many Norkotian historians speculated that they many of originally come from Genesaris, given a similarity in lingual history. Some disputed this claim, believing the Norks had indeed originated in Terrenus. Another theory argued that they did not come from the world of Valucre at all, though little evidence existed to support this idea. Whatever the case, the Norks were known to have existed in Terrenus as early as 17,600 WT. The Plateau of Zuhl, first settled by Norks in 17,896 WT It was during the reign of Levas the Cruel (c. 17,896 WT) when the Norks began their migration would eventually result in the founding of Norkotia. Driven from their homes for fear of enslavement or death, the Norkic tribes banded together into a large gathering, totaling several thousand members altogether. These refugees crossed the great plains of Terrenus, attempting to get as far from Levas's reach as possible. Their path eventually brought them to black cliffs of the Plateau of Zuhl. Unable to scale them, the Norks followed them northward, eventually coming across a deep lake being fed by a river from the highlands. On the far side of the lake was a portion of the cliffs that was less steep than elsewhere, and it was here that the Norks decided to carve a footpath to give them access to the highlands. It took many weeks, but eventually the path was made, and the Norks made their way onto the plateau for the first time. Some chose to remain here, on the shores of the river and the lake below, founding the first Norkic city in Zuhl as a result. This city came to be known as Forsthaven, or "first dwelling" in the old Norkic tongue. The rest of the gathering proceeded deep into the plateau's arid interior, following the river northeastward. A few small settlements were formed along the river, but most of the assembly continued to forge onward, hoping to find more fertile grounds. Eventually they came to the headwaters of the river, in the Fjar Heights region, and here the migrants halted to debate. Some argued that they should go back and settle further down the river, while some believed this was as far as they could go, though the river was little more than a stream here, and not enough to sustain the multitude. After some days of camping at this spot, one man, whose name was later lost to history, proclaimed that he had a vision from a mysterious "mother goddess". She had directed him to lead the people north, across the desert, where they would find a place that they could settle and prosper. At first the tribes believed him foolish, but he later began to prophesy on minor occurrences, and began to perform small miracles in the name of the goddess. At last, the majority agreed to follow him, and they proceeded across the desert. The journey proved treacherous, and many perished, though most of these were those who left the larger group and tried to turn back. Though the crossing was long and difficult, the prophet's words were validated in the end, for the people came upon a great freshwater lake, and before them stretched a downward sloping plane, which was fertile and suitable to sustain a city. Scouts were sent along the coastline of the lake, but they found that for endless miles, as far as the eye could see, sheer cliffs jutted forth from the water. Only this singular spot, to which the prophet had led them, allowed them access to the water. It was here that the multitude finally settled, and a city they built would come to be known as the "Home of the Norks", or Norkotia. The Vulkish Wars The Norkotian civilization grew rapidly, following the laws and teachings of the prophet, for he had further visions from the goddess even after the people had been delivered to safety, until his death. New towns were gradually founded around the central city, though some more adventurous sorts began to spread far and wide across the plateau. It was during this time that the Norks first came into contact with the indigenous peoples, a few scattered clans of nomadic humans who had no unified name, and the more widespread elven tribes known as the Vulks. Initially, relations between the Norkotians and the native peoples were peaceful, and the Norks gradually began to integrate the nomads into their own culture. This resulted in many nomad names and words making their way into Norkotian language, along with certain cultural and religious customs. However, as the years went on and the humans began to swell in numbers and expand, disputes began to arise between them and the elves. Eventually these disputes boiled-over into outright violence. Though there were a number of minor skirmishes between individuals or small parties prior, the beginning of the so-called Vulkish Wars began in 17,946, with the Battle of Kurgh, a violent series of skirmishes between the people of the Norkotian fishing village of Kurgh, and a nearby Vulkish settlement. After that point, the conflicts grew larger scale and more severe, with entire settlements on both sides being wiped out completely. These wars continued intermittently for nearly four hundred years, during which time firearms were first introduced into the plateau. In 18,368, a huge alliance was formed by the majority of the Vulkish Tribes in the area around Norkotia, with the purpose of expelling or exterminating the humans from the region entirely. In response, the Norkic towns banded together into a coalition to oppose them, marking the first time in Norkotian history that a full-sized army was assembled. The coalition and alliance armies clashed in a single, massive battle which came to be known as the Red Flood War, named so because the floodplain upon which they fought was said to have turned completely red with the blood of the battle's casualties. Despite tremendous loss of life, the Norkotians emerged victorious, and the Vulks were permanently reduced to a minority race on the plateau. The Red Flood War marked the end of the Vulkish Wars, and the conflict would long be remembered and retold in the form of novels, games and films. A monument to the fallen was built in a tiny farming town nearby, and that town would later be renamed Blutfield (literally "Field of Blood" in old Norkic) because of the war. Confederation and golden age In the aftermath of the Red Flood War, the leaders of the cities that had taken part in the coalition decided to forge a more permanent alliance. About a month after the war, the Norkotian Constitution was drafted and signed by eleven Norkic towns in the vicinity of Garrison Bay. Norkotia, the largest city among the membership, and the location where the signing had taken place, was established as the capital. Thus, the Norkotian Confederation was born. The city of Norkotia gradually came to be known as Norkotia City, with the term "Norkotia" beginning to apply to region as a whole. The new government, guided by a democratically elected council of representatives from each member city, was relatively loose and limited in power in its early years. However, some of its early accomplishments included the establishment of a common currency and the establishment of certain basic citizen rights. With a number of young technologies having been invented during the war, and with conflict between elves and humans now reduced to negligible levels, though a great deal of racial tension remained, the new confederation began to flourish economically. Electricity soon began to spread, and the use of oil to fuel vehicles resulted in a major infrastructure revolution. Petrogel was invented and almost immediately replaced gunpowder as the primary propellant for bullets and cannon shells. Plastic was likewise invented, allowing mass production of manufactured goods to be done more cheaply and easily. The Norkotian University, the first institution of higher learning on the Plateau, was also founded during this time. This period of innovation and prosperity would later be known as "The Golden Age" or "The Norkotian Renaissance". Period of decline "I get tired of seeing this trash lying around every time I drive by." ―Shane Haydes, referring to a brothel in Bradonsville Despite the significant improvements in technology and quality of life during its industrial revolution, Norkotia also began to see the beginnings of several new problems during this time. Directivism's influence began to decline, particularly after influence from Odin Haze's newly-established Gaian regime in outer-Terrenus began to filter into the plateau. This was combined with a general weakening in religious faith, thanks to a perceived lack of need that often came with a prosperous and comfortable society. All this resulted in a shift in Norkotia's cultural and moral standards. Some wealthy business leaders, mostly descendants of those who had struck it rich during the renaissance, sought to capitalize on this opportunity. They began to use their influence to discourage traditional religious morality in favor of a more secularist society. They also worked to have many goods and services that were previously illegal or restricted, such as drugs, alcohol, gambling and prostitution, legalized by the Norkotian Council. By the time any one thing was legalized, the business leaders would already have positioned themselves to dominate the new market. This scheme allowed them not only to make money off of basic necessities, but to profit off of people's extra money. Many more Norkotians become deeply addicted to the vices that were legalized, ensuring the wealthy elite became even more so. Despite opposition by many conservatives, proponents of these changes pointed-out that the decriminalization of these goods and serves had all but eliminated organized crime from Norkotian cities. The economy also began to decline during this time, as population growth began to slow and the introduction of social welfare programs began to reduce employment percentages. A number of factories and refineries were forced to shut down as a result of the stagnation, resulting in many districts of industrial cities like Stahlburg to become ghost towns. Despite the weakening of the workforce, many secularists in both the government and business continued to reap substantial profits, using various welfare programs as a way to keep money flowing to the citizenry, which they would then gain back through the vice sectors, which had not declined. In the mid-18,590s, these cultural and economic changes had resulted in growing unrest among the citizenry. This brought about the rise of several anti-establishment movements, most notably the Norkotian Nationalist Movement. The Nationalists, who desired not only to restore purity to the culture, but also to begin growing and expanding as a nation once again. Led by the ambitious youngster, Joseph Tynes, the Nationalists managed to win a series of massive upsets in the 18,596 elections. Tynes was elected Chairman of the Council, making him the youngest man ever to hold the position, and giving him the stage upon which to push the Nationalist agenda. The first year of Tynes's administration was marked with corruption crackdowns, border chaos, and festering division between rival political factions within Norkotia. The council passed a number of major policy reforms, banning many of the vices that had become legal under the secularists. Meanwhile, Tynes negotiated a trade deal with House Karradeen of Ursa Madeum, and later signed the Treaty of 597, marking an apparent end to Norkotia's isolationism. Formation of the Union "Yes, my fellow citizens, this is that day! This is the day we declare the birth of the first... Norkotian... Union! Today, WE STAND UNITED!" ―Joseph Tynes declares the formation of the Norkotian Union Even as he was working on his promised policy reforms, Tynes's ultimate goal was a reorganization of the Norkotian government, which he felt was ineffective and not strong enough to face the threats in the world abroad. Though he originally planned to work Norkotia slowly toward this goal, an unexpected opportunity presented itself to him. In September of 597, a fanatic attempted to assassinate the chairman while the latter was attending a football game in Millersburg. Tynes survived, despite suffering significant injury to his arm, however; the event shook the nation. Protests and unrest broke-out in the aftermath, with many students, organized and funded by Tynes's remaining opponents in the business and academic communities, taking to the streets to demand his resignation. Rather than directly respond to the protests, Tynes directed his adviser, Diric Redbridge to secretly stir the rage of the protesters. Thanks to Redbridge's clandestine efforts, the protests grew more violent and turned into riots. Many individuals or businesses that supported Tynes were vandalized, which prompted retaliation, only causing further chaos. This, combined with the efforts he already had ongoing, gave Tynes the opening he had been looking for. Once recovered enough from his injuries to resume his duties, Tynes began to negotiate with the council under the premise of forming a more sturdy government that could contain the ongoing chaos, as well as be more able to deal with any more major problems that could arise in the future. Due to having many allies on the council, Tynes was able to get a new charter drafted, establishing the Norkotian Union. At the same time, he also invoked a never-before-used section of the original Norkotian Constitution, which allowed the chairman to appoint a martial commander-in-chief in the event of a war or other major crisis. Tynes used this article to promote himself, establishing the office of Grand Executor, while resigning as chairman. Experienced conservative politician Roland Stracht assumed duties as chairman after this, though Tynes intended to ensure that he still had sway on the council though his allies there. With the Union now established, Tynes organized a crackdown on the riots, eventually reestablishing order. He then immediately set about strengthening Norkotia's internal and external security apparatus. As Grand Executor, he was given leeway to command and organize any necessary military and police forces he saw fit, provided the council approved of the funding. Subsequently, he began the process of forming a national police force, which eventually became the Bureau of Internal Security, or InterSec, as well as a professional military. With few Norkotian citizens having any military experience at all, and those few who did having gained it from service with other military organizations outside of Zuhl, Tynes turned to House Uldwar to assist in training his new army. Also as part of its early training and operations, the Norkotian military sent an expeditionary force under Major Randolph Krieger to Yh'mi, where several detachments participated in the creation of Bloodwatch Base at the Furthest Point. Tynes also began to recruit more cities from all across the plateau into joining the Union, with the eventual hope of uniting both all of Zuhl and the Norkic peoples under one flag. Despite early support for his policies, public opinion began to slowly turn against Tynes, beginning with his unpopular deployment of troops in Yh'mi, and becoming more acute after he accepted several hundred-thousand refugees from the Terran City of Tia. While Tynes was boosted by the support of many of the refugees, and the economy subsequently was also boosted by the influx of cheap labor, the dilution of the Norkotian culture by the influx of foreigners seemed a betrayal of Tynes's nationalistic promises. Tynes, for his part, was unconcerned with public opinion, believing they would come around eventually, and also thinking himself safe in his post as Grand Executor, which was not an elected office. However, Tynes's unpopularity reached a breaking point in July of 598, when he launched a strategically successful, but extremely costly invasion of Forsthaven. Forsthaven, the oldest of the Norkic settlements, had remained isolated from the Tynes's unification attempts, and after negotiations repeatedly failed, Tynes resorted to armed invasion to try and bring the city under Union rule. However, Forsthaven resisted, and the humanitarian cost of the brief, but brutal war, turned many people off from the Executor and his goals. In the aftermath of Forsthaven, the council elections of 598 swept a new wave of opposition council members into office. Carrying out a promise made during the campaigns, the council members placed Tynes on trial for alleged violations of the constitution and the charter he himself had helped draft. Despite his best efforts, Tynes could not overcome the council, and while he avoided imprisonment, his office was abolished and he was forbid from holding any further office within the Union. A new place in the world After Tynes's departure from power, many of the projects he had put forward were cancelled and many of his programs cut or reformed. InterSec was retained as a national security agency, but the military was disbanded, with all of its weapons and equipment being either turned over to InterSec, or sold as surplus. However, while former members of Tynes's military projects were subsequently unemployed, many also took with them their designs and research, and a minor scandal erupted as a result of the sudden disappearance of many sensitive documents and projects. Organized crime, already beginning to reappear after Tynes's social reforms, soon began to expand rapidly. With most drugs and vices still illegal, there began a rapid rise of drug cartels, mafia organizations and trafficking rings. The influx of foreigners, thanks both to Tynes's refugee programs and due to a new awareness of Norkotia by greater Terrenus, only worsened this crime wave. Though Tynes and his nationalist movement had faded from public view, a new series of problems had taken its place, and Norkotians soon found that they could not simply go back to the relatively peaceful isolation that they had once enjoyed. Flags and emblems Flag of the Norkotian Confederation The original flag of the confederation featured a pattern of eleven six-sided stars in a sea of navy blue. Each star represented one of the cities that ratified the Norkotian Constitution, which formed the confederation. The stars amidst the sea of blue also represented the vast, clear night sky in Norkotia, which was rarely constricted by clouds, trees or land features. Norkotian Union flag under the Tynes regime When the Norkotian Union was founded under Joseph Tynes, the flag was changed to a grey, white and black design featuring a stylized gear in a hexagon, which was a symbol of industry that had grown popular in Norkotia around that time. The greyscale color scheme was meant to represent the stability of modern industry, with the black representing coal and oil and the grey representing steel, specifically. Many criticized the flag design as being drab and lifeless, and that it embodied the soullessness of Norkotia's industrial economy. Upon Tynes's ouster, the flag was changed once again, this time incorporating both the design of the grey union flag, as well as the star design of original confederate flag. The original color scheme of white and navy was likewise restored, though red was added in addition. The number of stars was increased to fourteen, as three new cities had joined the Norkotian Government when the union was founded. Government and politics Since it's official formation after the Red Flood War, the Norkotian Government had been a coalition of mostly sovereign city-states, united under a common flag and currency. A council, consisting of one or more representatives from each member city, oversaw the drafting and passing of laws and ordinances that affected the entire nation. A chairman, elected separately from the council members, acted as the mediator and executive official, though their power was limited. Political parties in Norkotia were often loose and fleeting entities, but in its later years they had grown more stable and powerful. Shortly before the formation of the union, there was a major divide in Norkotian politics between those of traditionalist persuasions, usually referred to as "conservatives", and those who supported the movement into secularism, known as the "secularists". There was also a small minority known as the "Gaianists" who supported fostering greater relations with Odin Haze's Terran Empire. A fourth ideology, the "Nationalists" arose thanks to the efforts of Joseph Tynes, and those under this movement supported a largely conservative social agenda, combined with an imperialistic foreign policy vision. The Nationalists grew weaker after Tynes's removal from office, but still retained enough to support to remain as one of the "big four" political parties. Economy "Besides which I heard they got plenty a' work. It ain't like Hell's Gate where they give honest work to someone what don't gotta eat or drink, what don't got a family to take care of. They care about their people there, a-yup." ―a man telling Adime Adozen about Norkotia A Norkotian oil rig during the winter season For much of its early history, the Norkotian economy was primarily agricultural, with grain crops and cattle ranching dominating the market. Due to the semi-arid conditions, even along the coast, early Norkotian settlers were forced to develop sophisticated irrigation systems to funnel water from Garrison Bay up onto the plateau to water their crops. It wasn't until coal-based electricity was developed and incorporated into these irrigation systems that Norkotia's farming capabilities were able to make drastic strides. The later introduction of rail infrastructure and development of mechanized farming methods, initially using steam, further increased Norkotia's food-producing capabilities. It would not be until innovations in the use petroleum that the Norkotian economy would reach the pinnacle of its prosperity. With vast reserves of crude oil available all throughout the plateau, the economy rapidly began to shift from agriculture to energy and manufacturing. Motor vehicles improved the mobility of Norkotian citizens considerably, making it more practical to live in outlying towns rather than within the metro area. The invention of petrogel, a semi-solid form of refined petroleum, resulted in a shift away from the use of gunpowder, which had been known to be unreliable throughout Terrenus, including Norkotia. Another petroleum product, plastic, became incredibly popular material for use in manufactured products. A hardened plastic alloy armor, petrosteel, was invented in the early 18,590s and became a popular material for various types of armor for soldiers and military equipment, as well as for general aircraft construction. Society and culture Norkotian civilization was heavily influenced by the relative absence of magic on the Plateau of Zuhl, forcing the denizens to rely on their own rugged ingenuity to overcome any difficulties that arose. Due to the difficult frontier life that many Norkotians lived, independence and work ethic were vital traits for individuals to possess. Even as Norkotian cities grew larger and technological comforts become more commonplace, a strong work ethic was still highly encouraged toward young adults who were just entering the work force. Further affirming and expanding upon these values was the religion that arise from the teachings of the Prophet, Directivism. Directivism preached that the mother goddess has brought the Norks across the deserts of Zühl in order to purify and prepare them for her laws, and these laws in-turn directed the people to work to overcome both the trials presented by the natural around them, as well as by their own human nature. Indulgence of one's base nature, in the form of vices such as gluttony, drunkenness and sexual immorality were considered significant sins, as were actions of greed and dishonesty. Many of these more conservative values declined significantly during the period from 18,518–18,596 WT, during which time many wealthy industrialists pushed for the legalization and promotion of many types of drugs and sex trade professions, while also attempting to marginalize Directivism by encouraging atheism or alternative religions. While this had the effect of nearly exterminating organized crime within the cities, many saw it a tragic loss of cultural morality. The Nationalist Movement under Joseph Tynes saw the reversal of many of the changes made under the secular industrialist, with many drugs being banned and prostitution being made illegal once again. The unintended effect of these actions, however; was the revitalization of Norkotia's organized crime. Mafia organizations now hold significant influence in many of the major cities in Norkotia, offering products and services no longer available to those who began addicted to them during the time when they were legal. Military and security For most of its history, Norkotia and other Norkic cities were protected by a combination of town sheriff departments, local militias and private security companies. During the rule of Joseph Tynes, Norkotia formed its first professional military, along with a national police force and several other major security entities. Many of these were abolished upon Tynes's dismissal, but a couple of them were retained. The Bureau of Internal Security, or InterSec, was a national law enforcement and investigative agency originally intended to absorb and all local sheriff's offices into one, centralized agency. However, while this plan was reversed by the council, InterSec remained as a specialized security agency with two distinct branches. The Investigation Branch was tasked with investigating crimes that were committed across or outside of jurisdiction of city sheriff departments. It also acted as a counter-espionage agency, with many of its investigators specialized in rooting out spies or threats to national security. One the opposite end, The Enforcement Branch acted as a SWAT and paramilitary unit, equipped with military-grade gear and trained in military tactics. The Enforcement Branch was primary used to deal with terrorism and organized crime, though it also acted as a reserve military force in the unlikely event of foreign invasion. The Enforcement branch also had two specialized sub-branches, the Coast Guard and Air Guard. In addition to InterSec, the Council was persuaded to revive another entity, the Ranger Corps. Originally a scouting division of the now disbanded army, the Rangers were reformed as a loosely-organized, state-sponsored mercenary brigade. The organization was purposed with tackling assignments in the more remote regions within Norkotia's claimed borders, as well as any missions that took place on foreign soil. The Rangers sometimes operated solo, though posses often formed for more difficult assignments. Unlike InterSec, Rangers were not given training or equipment by the state, but used their own gear on jobs. As contracted mercenaries, Rangers were paid on a per-job basis, and the methods they used to accomplish their missions were rarely questioned.
  35. 1 point
    Ursa Madeum is a medieval fantasy setting, so you should be fine with anything low-tech.
  36. 1 point
    king milo: throws a party all pirates within the vicinity: ill be attending with the unluckiest luckiest man in the madeum seas and the softest boi in the hildebrand lands. : ^ )
  37. 1 point
    danzilla3

    The Sacrifice of Others (Dead)

    For a fleeting moment, Iblis thought that Cain would do something profoundly unwise; but the other man thought better of it. Not that the Djinn could fault him for thinking of such a thing. Greed was a fundamental part of the human condition after all. So many throughout history had been undone because they didn't know when to stop. Cain was special in that regard. Today he would gain what he wanted; and that was enough for him. Admirable. The next several hours proceeded smoothly, the body growing just as he'd hoped it would. At this point the skeletal structure was fully formed, and some muscle tissue had begun to cover pale white bone. In the chest cavity the heart was still beating; still pulsing with eerie light. Alginack had been quiet for a little while now. It was almost as if it had given up and resigned itself to its fate. But then something seemed to catch its attention, and it began to struggle once more with renewed vigor. Iblis had to redouble his efforts to keep the god contained. "Somethings wrong," he hissed, "Alginack senses something!"
  38. 1 point
    danzilla3

    Mykur: The thorn imperium

    Shikai was of course disappointed when he realized that the printer was making not a sword, but some kind of sphere. He was instantly in high spirits again when the ball proved to be some kind of robot. It spun around him, inspecting him, before seemingly coming to some kind of conclusion. "Hello little buddy! What's your name?" "Nope!" he said cheerfully. That was when Black stumbled in and the little droid inquired if he was Keli. Realizing that this could become annoying if it were to be a habit, he sat back down at the computer and searched a bit more. Upon finding the schematics for the bot, he scrolled down until he found the information he was looking for. Then he got up, took the bot in his hand, and spoke to it. "Command Overide: November, Echo, Memento."
  39. 1 point
    supernal

    General chat for NOT

    Good question! It does not include things like plants which could be turned into drugs or medicine or what have you. The one plant like thing it does have is just an intermediary for more “material” like materials. That said I AM interested in updating / making a new flora index companion piece to the creature codex and this would be a great entry for that
  40. 1 point
    jaistlyn

    General chat for NOT

    Does Terran materials include things like uh abusive substances? I have an idea in my head for a fruit that is a drug in Yh’mi, and sells for ridiculous prices on the black market but is extremely dangerous to harvest... as with all things in Yh’mi.
  41. 1 point
    Shaylayy

    Suspended In Resin (Quest)

    Nirsim had only just been in Taen for two days before she was approached by a researcher for a job. Being an ex-bounty hunter, Nirsim was more keen to get back into it and start hunting criminals in this new land, but she supposed this task could help her get familiar with Taen beforehand. She agreed to help Yeul Fullbring for the time being; there will still be criminals to catch afterwards. Together they ventured towards Arcturon, a city that Nirsim had already heard about before even arriving in Taen, but she was still surprised to see such a large difference between this city and where she was before. Though a clean-looking, technologically advanced place, Nirsim knew better than to think that they would be completely safe. Everywhere she looked, she was observing, scrutinizing, prepared to fight if necessary. She was constantly on guard. They came across Site Coeus after a short while of Nirsim following Yeul around the city. She entrusted the researcher with knowing where she was going, so she didn't know whether they were going in the right direction or not. When they had arrived just in front of the building, Nirsim picked up her pace to be closer behind Yeul. They entered the building and was swiftly greeted by a young man, who Nirsim guessed to be some sort of secretary to the facility's researchers, judging by the clothes and warm, well-repeated greeting. "Greetings, and welcome to Site Coeus. Currently we have no scheduled tours today, so access is limited to staff of the facility. If you would like to be part of a tour, you can sign up for next week's tour with me." Followed by a worn out smile. @Godspell
  42. 1 point
    Fierach

    The Sacrifice of Others (Dead)

    One of the thousand white robed supplicants was a woman named Sarah Wilhem. Supposedly a native of the land, her heart long since belonged to another, to duty, to an organisation known as the Order of Force Majeure. She was not compliant to the madness that was going to unfold. Sarah needed to get out. She had a partner in crime, a fellow Seeker with whom she had taken responsiblity for infiltrating for this night. If she did not return she was sure he would send warning, but the woman needed more details. Her hands felt clammy and she paled with fear, holding herself still through sheer will. She had to get more information to pass on, on this clone of Cain, the god Alignak they attempted to harness, and any potential weaknesses in the ritual. A thought came to her, of only she had her bow and throwing daggers. Ten paces distance might have been enough to end the threat before it even began. No, she dismissed the thought. Such beings had ample protections in place against an ambush like that.
  43. 1 point
    Csl

    Csl's Art Box

    It's been a while. Whilst I cry over vielle leaving, I'll throw some art here. Arende Pallas and Lenore Hated, hopeless, sleepless, sane Tyler Commissions Zashii commissions Danzilla gift Speedpaints ALSO! If you want to commission something click here for comm info. And if you want to support me in general or buy me a coffee you can check my Ko-fi page here <3
  44. 1 point
    supernal

    Grave Robbing in the Dead of Night

    (OOC: Asked to be interrupted leaving Security rather than going to Security so other characters could still react to my announcement. Whatever the case I will treat the placement the same; with MERI and Rhen in the hallway between Security and Admin, Meri north and Rhen south.) The moment Rhenium saw the clattering monstrosity square off against her and draw a bead on her person, she switched her body away from LRI shielding and towards a primarily uru construction. MERI was full of one-liners but had more than just her own timing to consider when it came to cracking jokes. She managed to fire off her witticism and to do it in tandem with a parade of bullets aimed towards Rhen, but no sooner did she open fire and pepper the hallway, than Nikolai came upon her from behind and grabbed her by the chassis. He flexed mightily on the bot, no doubt delighted at the prospect of a clean, unhampered shot, and pitted behemoth metal against behemoth metal. He wanted to put enough finger holes in MERI that he could use her as a bowling ball. Who would win? A question for another person, because Rhenium was too busy hauling ass; she turned at near the same moment that MERI flooded the air with bullets and appeared, all told, unchecked by the numerous projectiles striking her in the back. It was hard to pick up the clatter of intact bullets falling to the ground over the melodic cadence of spent shells doing the same, but sharp eyes and keen hearing were likely to make the distinction. The uru with which Rhen transmogrified captured the bullets' kinetic force, internalized it, made it available for Rhenium on command. No doubt Leon was right behind Nikolai, seeing as all MERI did to remove him as a threat was throw him to one side and then throw a door after him. Dealing with the butt-zombies was simplicity itself, in part because Rhenium was aided by MERI's attack. She didn't even have to take on the overhead of regulating the amount of force she ejected on demand, bullet-strength dispersions would serve just fine. She ran between, then past, the butt-zombies with the focus and form of an Olympic sprinter. Should one of the zombies lay a hand on her, or place a foot in her path, their respective limb would find a hole blown through it and the offending limb tossed back by hydrostatic shock. Touching Rhen was like triggering a miniature landmine – contact with her metallic 'flesh' felt like getting a high-caliber machine-gun round shot through whatever surface area was unfortunate enough to do the contacting. It was then only a matter of finding a window, breaking through it, and finding her way to the ground floor. (tentative exit of Rhen)
  45. 1 point
    jaistlyn

    Canon Updates to Yh'mi

    Completed thread @Reinholdt @Dolor Aeternum @jaistlyn @1ionFang Lirrey Lines link Summary: Doctor Xeyal of the only bar in Inns'th (The Purgatory) aimed to set up a portal between Lirrey and Inns'th with the help of Lunara, Karuna, Sasha, and Agony. The group traveled to Lirrey and ended up exploring a secret passage leading beneath Lirrey's church. There they discover the horrible truth behind Lirrey, that the village and the people within were an extension of a fallen elder god, Lirrey the Eternal Star. Fated to be drawn to this location, Lunara and Lirrey form a deep eldritch pact, making the faerie Lirrey's Herald and granting her great blood powers. The portal was successfully opened and now secretly connects the Lirrey church with Purgatory's basement. - Location updated Purgatory The building known as Purgatory is Inns'th's only bar, which also doubles as a hospital, science lab, and funeral parlor at times. Run by the mysterious Doctor Xeyal, it awaits unsuspecting guests. Xeyal sought the help of mercenaries to establish a secret portal in his lab that connects to the church in the Village of Lirrey, unknown to the White Hand paladins. Lirrey description updated Timelessness anomaly No matter what you do to Lirrey, it will always reset back to its original state. Burn it down, murder its inhabitants, and you'll soon find it back to its pristine state, as if nothing had happened. However, you will not continue to be welcomed in Lirrey. All the villagers will collectively chant that you're a sinner and swamp you, forcing you to head to the church to 'repent'. The church A church for an unknown religion is one of more noticeable buildings in Lirrey. There has been one character who has been inside the church, in a vision. On the walls of the church were three religious paintings: One of a being that resembles Lun'silth, and the other two were obscured, as if by the mists of her dreams. If your character has met Lirrey Star before, then the second painting reveals itself to be the creature. Lirrey the Eternal Star Lirrey Star is a large, tentacled creature that lives below Lirrey's Church (only accessible under the altar for those who know), and is the entity behind the villagers' one-trackness. Lirrey Star bleeds into a pool of red, and is assumed to have been wounded by the ancient battle between Galan the White and the Eater of Stars. The Order of the White Hand has no knowledge of Lirrey Star's existence yet. Lirrey the Eternal Star added to bestiary 3. Lirrey the Eternal Star Size: Humongous (At least thirty meters in span - covers the whole ceiling of a cave). Weight: Unknown, estimation impossible. Threat Status: Unknown. Has not been known to attack or attempt to communicate, but seems to control the inhabitants of Lirrey. Stepping into its pool of blood may have detrimental effects. Known Areas: In a cave beneath Lirrey's Church, only accessible under the Altar of the Church. Known Abilities: Control over Lirrey's inhabitants. Uncertain if the timeless nature of Lirrey is a result of Lirrey Star's abilities. Known Weaknesses: Unknown. Sound Recording: None. The creature is silent. "Awaiting at the base of the stairs, is a gargantuan cavern, robust in size purely out of necessity to contain the unfathomable creature within. Along the ceiling and far end rested innumerable tendril like 'roots', pods, appendages, and other yet unclassified characteristics sewn onto bulbous, disconcerting flesh converging around a radial set of presumed teeth. The sense that what little they viewed of the beast was a minority is reinforced by the number of spots in the rock and dirt where pieces of the creature embedded and disappeared. Suddenly the religious imagery of one of the figures in the church above made sense, was understood, became Truth. The REALity is, this is Lirrey the Eternal Star. Towards the middle of the cavern stood a tall woman garbed in a mixture of clergy regalia and admiral's stripes, smiling warmly. Beside her lies a large pool of the blood both dark as night and a vivid crimson in a clear contradiction to itself. The source is evident as a large amount of blood falls into the pool with an echoing sploosh. Above, some section of the creature seems to be torn out, a gaping wound revealing indescribable internal workings that would leave one queasy for eternity if it were truly understood." - excerpt taken from Lirrey Lines thread. Use of Lirrey Star (OOC note) - Lirrey Star is not known to the Order of the White Hand yet, and as such is less accessible IC than Lun'silth. Contact jaistlyn if you wish to have interactions with Lirrey Star, and we can discuss and agree on the outcomes of such an interaction. Designed by Reinholdt. 2 new quests added Odd One Out *Available* Quest Description: In Lirrey, villagers live in contentment as one with the community. There is one however, who resists harmonizing with the neighborhood. News of this man has reached the paladins of the White Hand. The description matches that of Nadas Xar'cha, thought lost and dead after a failed excursion into the Whitewoods. While the Paladins discourage direct contact with Lirrey, they wish to make an exception. On the surface a rescue mission, the intelligence on how Nadas survived and resists Lirrey's influence takes precedence. Travel to Lirrey, discover Nadas' secret, and decide what to do with him. Quest Level: B Recommended group number: 1 to 3. Minimum thread length: 30 posts. Creature level (refer to Booklet 2 - The Tomes): Level B. You'll need to resist the effects of Lirrey trying to make you stay and be part of their community. Storyteller: Required - Contact Reinholdt to receive more details about Nadas. Reward: Nadas' secret can be used to create protective charms that can suppress some of Yh'mi's mental influence. (Credit to Reinholdt for the quest idea) One-Eye Zapping *Available* Quest Description: Recently, a beam of red laser light has been seen shooting towards the sky near to the village of Lirrey. The Order of the White Hand requested investigation of this phenomenon, and found that the laser is shooting from the eye of a dead Cyclops - one of the larger of their kind. The laser seems to be relentless, and does not require any kind of power source. No other Cyclops had been known to be able to shoot lasers, so the Order is unsure of what caused it. Nevertheless, they are requesting aid to find a way to stop the laser temporarily, and harvest the Cyclops' eye safely so that they will be able to install it at the Furthest Point fort that is in the midst of being built as a defensive weapon. Quest Level: B+ Recommended group number: 2 to 5. Minimum thread length: 40 posts. Creature level (refer to Booklet 2 - The Tomes): Level B. The creatures of Yh'mi may be hanging around the corpse of the dead Cyclops, devouring its flesh, and adventurers may also encounter its Cyclops brethren attempting to retrieve the body of one of their kind. Storyteller: Not required. Reward: In addition to monetary rewards, each adventurer will receive a ring that can store some of the energy of the laser, and they will be able to release the energy at will. (Laser beam 5 seconds, 2 uses.)
  46. 1 point
    Narcissa

    A Silence of Three Parts

    With arms crossed snugly across her torso, Rou idled halfway down the hall, her back pressed against a tall white column in expectant fashion. The click and swing of the door had already caught the attention of her thin yellow eyes, watchful as a cat, and the call of her name brought the full swivel of her crown, and leaned her shoulder nonchalantly into the marble, emphasizing the curve of her wide hips. As smug as silk was smooth, Rou met him with a plush-lipped grin, both a boast and a mask. The raise in her eyebrow hinted at suspicion, though she knew better than to pester him with questions-- she'd preferred not to be denied answer. "Eavesdropping? No, my Lord," she answered, toying with a cavalier tone, "Just following a lead. Due diligence, and all that." With a groan and a push of her hip, she bounced herself from her repose, stretching out her muscles with a taut reach overhead, eating up the time as he tread closer through the hall to join her. "Though, it's not as boring as it is depressing. I mean, have you seen Orisia's books?" Rou complained drably, exhibiting herself with the incidental puffing of her chest as she stretched her arm behind her head, "The Dominion would make more money burning this island to the ground, rather than trying to sustain it. The debt is enough to make the coincounters weep. Thaladred's positively going to have a field day." She was right, however, about more than the books-- the haze of depression seemed to weigh on the shoulders of the entire castle, and not because of the island's finances. Reason enough to be annoyed, as one could glean from her distasteful tone. Usually one to avoid work, noted for skipping out on meetings and found lounging about in the sun, Rou looked unusually tired, though the dark bags beneath her eyes were well-hidden under the sculpt of her makeup. An official visit to the Island of Summer had not been in the name of pleasure, no, as she'd seemed to busy herself with actual work. Even without Zenahriel to chaperone, Rou seemed to have retaken the mantle of An'She with some degree of seriousness... though even responsibility could not absolve Rou of her acerbic and sultry manner. Meeting his stride, she turned on her heels and matched his pace, keeping herself an almost proper distance to his right. "Rumor came from the mainland, a rather astonishing hoax," she said, in a slightly more serious tone, her arms still folded across her chest as she continued to look ahead on their way to Rafael's study. She sought out Rafael only by the sidelong cut of her eyes. "Color me surprised to find out it's true. That's quite big of you, Rafael..." she confided in him, the use of his name quiet, as she'd deemed they were alone and use of his name was not so inappropriate, "... given all this arrangement has cost, and risks." With a single look exchanged in the dark pools of his eyes, Rou paused with a token moment of sympathy, and brushed his arm with a comforting squeeze. He'd already known, and likely found it sore to be reminded. "She will be alright," she promised confidently, and shrugged. "Saying there would be eyes on her at all times would be putting it mildly." Coming from one who knew all too well, Rou knew that Rafael would give Gabriela the space she needed, but not the privacy. Brushing her hair back coolly, Rou relaxed, and her stride turned into a saunter. "I've already sent word to the Imperator to deploy incognito squads at various checkpoints," Rou reported lackidaisically, as if it were simply business-as-usual, "With some contingency in place, perhaps you'll rest easier, your Majesty. You could do with some sleep." As they'd turned into the study, Rou wrestled through the pocket of her coat, and withdrew a parchment, as she promptly unfolded it with both hands, and stood on the other side of his desk. "I received this from the Caleras, this morning," she explained, holding the paper out to him, detailing the contents of what she would condense for him. Rafael had given his former paramour a gift long ago, in the form of two additions to the subservience of her house, the vampyres Beatriz and Darius Calera. The mistakes of the head of House Calera had seen them pledge themselves to Rou in reparation, though with Rou's fiery temper and the arson of her home (and the large sum to be collected on it), she'd reinstated a fraction of their status, enough to be considered noble to peruse the courts once again. Even with their autonomy restored, they still bred a certain loyalty to their human dignitary. Unwittingly, Rafael had gifted her a rather useful pair of spies. She'd placed her arms gently behind her back, falling almost habitually into a military rest position, and ignored the undoubtedly vain hubris hiding on the grin beneath Rafael's downy beard, and cleared her throat. "Your chamberboy, Balthasar-- seems he's been making rather frequent visits to An'She Augustus Cole," Rou told him, accusatory and direct. She'd known better than to accuse a servant of Rafael's household without proof, but the signed letter from the Caleras was account enough, and she trusted their word and their loyalty. "An impressionable --and rather daft-- young man, but an accomplished reader. Seems he read the edict you were drafting, and went to our good councilor Cole to curry some favor. Luckily, the Caleras detained him before he could impart the knowledge on Cole... and thus prostrated himself to Beatriz and Darius, instead." The former head of their house, Eros, may had been deprived of their fangs, but Beatriz and Darius had certainly not, and could be known to use them, when the situation called. Inwardly, Rou had found herself rather proud, but stifled it, as the news delivered to Rafael had called for more temperance. "Best you know who's looking over your shoulder."
  47. 1 point
    King

    A Silence of Three Parts

    “No, I’m not,” he agreed with her before the seal of her promise. Though he was no devil or crossroad demon, Rafael’s life in politics had taught him the value of keeping—or not keeping—your word. He had not become all that he was by lying and stealing, united hundreds of warring tribes across the Arcane East under a single banner by betraying one and exalting the other. It was because of his cruel, childish nature of poking and prodding, his unrelenting desire to understand how things worked, why they worked, that had allowed him to amass such tremendous influence and might in a world not his own. When he promised something, it was delivered, for better or for worse, and that was something even dear cousin could not deny. “Thank you, my love.” While Gabriela seemed determined to remain in a soured mood, dampening what should have been a rather joyous moment with her suspicion and ungratefulness, Rafael could not allow her to poison the well. Though he took her firmly by the hip in his right hand, lightly pricking her with his tapered fingernails, it was not in threat or violent possession, but simply his heavy-handed ways of affection. As he breathed in her nude scent, continuing to brush his lips along her cheek and the curve of her slender neck, it was the touch of genuine passion that had been stoked for nearly a millennia. And the love in the fingertips that strolled over her belly, caressing the sanctuary of their unborn child, was the love of a man that would do anything for the security of his family. No matter how pitiful of an excuse she claimed it to be. “Yes, yes,” he breathed against her shoulder, kissing the soft, tender flesh after each word. “I need just a moment longer,” he promised. “You’re leaving, Gabriela, and you’ll be gone for a long time. I know that. But you aren’t going alone.” The rhythmic stroking of his broad palm over the curve of her stomach punctuated his meaning. Rafael laid his head against her back, breathing in the sweet aroma of her hair. “You should know what it means for me to do this.” It was not something he could have fathomed even weeks ago, let alone in the earlier years of their relationship. “I’m going to miss you, truly. Both of you.” With a final kiss to the highest notch in her spine, Rafael eased Gabriela from his lap and onto her feet, standing thereafter. He smiled at her, a brief, matter of fact expression, while allowing his gaze one final sweep over her figure. A final palming of their child, and then a loving stroke of his knuckles across her cheek before he brushed more of her silken tresses back over her shoulder. He took her by the back of the neck and kissed her without request, for though they were equals, she would give him this final act of intimacy. Rafael kissed her deeply, opening her mouth and breathing all of her in, filling her loneliness, her sorrow, her ache with the tempest of his passion. He consumed her as he always did, blurring the world with the sheer intensity of his unbridled wanting of her. Then the kiss ended, his lips a hair’s breadth from hers. “Please, don’t make me regret this.” Rafael turned and left her there by the edge of their bed, turning his thoughts to a number of issues still in desperate need of his attention. They would help to distract him from the coming emptiness of their home, he hoped, and keep the less favorable aspects of himself – fear, paranoia, anger, jealousy – from surfacing during Gabriela’s sabbatical. "The decree is on the dresser. I've given you more than enough time to make your changes and to review its contents. If you're leaving, the security of the throne must be made unquestionable. Sign it. You won't leave until you do. I'll come back for it later tonight." You know this is a mistake, a cold, playful voice teased him from the darkest corners of his mind. Why do you bother indulging her so? Her blood is your birthright; do with it as you please. But he was, the elder realized. Gabriela had not conned him into this agreement, not forced his hand as she was so very often inclined to do. This was his choice to give her these freedoms, to slacken the leash as it were, and dote on her as an emperor might his prized wife. There was power in that, and Rafael shunned the taunt without response. Closing the door to their private chambers behind him, Rafael happened by another set of yellow eyes, though far more mischievous – almost feline in their calculating ways – than his cousin’s somber gaze. He studied the woman for longer than he’d allow any other man to, letting the An’She know that despite their lack of affection in recent weeks, she still pleased him greatly with her appearance and figure. It was in the way his eyes lingered on her mouth, her generous bust, and the shapely hips even the densest of robes or gowns could never hide. “Eavesdropping now, Rou?” Despite the elder’s almost rigid expression, his placid tone conveyed he was not offended. “I didn’t think you’d find Orisia that boring.” He began down the hall without regarding her further, heading toward his study at its end. “Is everything all right?”
  48. 1 point
    Pasion Pasiva

    A Silence of Three Parts

    “This child of ours, Gabriela, was made by no deal. He is not the result of scheming, or plotting, of rape or violence. This child exists only because we both wanted him to.” There was only one way to survive the proximity with which he assaulted her. She had to disengage emotionally and physically. She had to become the pretty, little play thing he wanted her to be -- so she sat there, her legs parted on either side of his thigh like a child who could not escape from a nightmare, while he forced her to stroke her pregnant belly. There was something undeniably predatory about Raphael, but it cut far below the surface of his thirst for blood. There was a thirst for power in the elder, for control beyond what could be gained upon the political field. It was a thirst for literal control over another beings life. And that thirst caused him to toe the icy shores of sadism with a gleeful sort of excitement she had never seen in anyone else. And the tragedy was that he was so good at it. He enjoyed the emotional torture he inflected, his love was not separated from the pain he felt, as a father might in regards to his child, that he had to inflict upon her. Where other lovers had been cruel to her, their heavy-handed tactics always seemed born from a place of turmoil and torment. They feared losing her and therefore felt compelled to do what they could to keep her. She was very much a possession, but a beloved possession -- a treasured thing, a chosen one. To Raphael, she was not some pretty jewel to hoard. She was a living, breathing thing that he could push and prod. Like a cruel child, he sought to learn her inner workings by cutting away pieces of her anatomy. And this particular experiment was no different. They both knew he wasn’t granting her freedom -- not really. They both knew that he expected her to return. This was a longer leash, and not the lack of a collar. But she wasn’t going to argue the point with him, not when he himself was delivering her into the closest position she could ever be in to actually attain what she wanted. She had to play nice. “You know where you belong, Gabriela. Enjoy the world and its wonders, for there are only so many to keep you entertained. Endure its cruelty, its indifference, its merciless prejudice and hatred. You will bore of it all eventually, when you realize what I have begun to realize, and you will come home. You will come home. And I will be here to greet you, my love, for that is the role I play. Because I choose to.” His nose was buried in her hair and his lips were grazing the side of her throat. He was breathing hotly against her collar while his one hand, upon her hip, squeezed and pinched at the flesh under her nightgown. And she struggled against her body’s reaction to grow tense, to wither away from the affections. She sat through it with mounting hatred and anger, but showed nothing of it physically. However, through their blood bond, she did not mute her disgust. He kissed her cheek and the corner of her mouth, and to this and this alone did she tilt her head away -- shying from what she imagined could become more. “Now, promise me you will keep our child safe, Gabriela. Promise me, or I fear I may not possess the strength to let you go.” “You’re not the sort to break a promise,” she said as she forced herself to settle back into him -- not to fight his advances. She relaxed, even as her body ached to stand and pull away. It wasn’t that she found him repugnant. No matter how much she wanted to hate him, their attraction was written in their very blood. However, it was the ache for her freedom that pulled at her now. It was the only thing she wanted more than anything -- a chance, a real chance, to get away. “Regardless, I don’t think you’re asking for much -- so, have your promise, Raphael. I will keep our child safe, until the day of its birth, and then we will decide together what becomes of this pitiful excuse of a family, because we are equals. And because we are equals, you will go now and let me rest. If I am to travel tomorrow, you know I will need to rest.”
  49. 1 point
    Pasion Pasiva

    A Silence of Three Parts

    A slackened leash, and nothing more -- that was his great offer. Gabriela stood there, her face returning to its passive and natural state, bathed in the warm light that flickered and danced from dozens of lit candles. She was beautiful in a way very few women could be. Passively, without the cover of cosmetics, without the forced curve of a smile or the genuine string of a laugh. She was beautiful without trying to be, and the elements of nature only adorned her further. With her small face and her large, owlish eyes -- the gold in them pools of molten sunlight, even when she felt diminished in spirit. Her flesh was not merely pale, but moonlight silver in hue, down to her glass-like fingernails which never needed treatment. What better stock for his child could he have hoped for? By nature of her blood, she ensured that their child would be blessed with beauty. He had only to see the tender and heart-achingly beautiful face of little Philippe to know what her blood could do on its own, and therefore, there was much hope as to what their blood might produce together. The first pureblooded vampyre since her own birth. No -- it was silly to believe he would ever actually let her go, and of course he confirmed the suspicions. Gabriela had not meant to blow on the embers of his passions or obsessions when she asked if he no longer wanted her. It was a difficult question not to ponder after the extents that he had gone through to acquire her. A literal deal with the devil had been struck for the right to seed her womb. There was a touch of color in her cheeks, a rare sight indeed but proof that she was well fed and that his attentions upon her body had stirred something. Well, the color in her cheek was not the only proof of that. Her chest rose and fell as she breathed a little faster, constricted under the, suddenly scratchy and tight, lace that did little to hide the hardened nipples. But even with the distractions of her body, she listened closely to his sought to disperse their meaning. In all this land there was no man more adept at manipulation than Raphael. In games of deceit and entanglement, there was simply no match for the monster that was Raphael Bartolome. This wasn’t about granting her freedom, this was merely a way for her to either fall into line -- by believing the Blood Emperor had turned a new leaf or -- and perhaps his true intentions -- this was a trap, a lesson she was meant to fail so that he would have proper cause to return things back to how they had been. She had to wonder if he truly wanted her as his equal. Would she herself want someone as her own equal, even if they were not her equal in power or age? The sharing of power, a division of it among two forces, it seemed to be an impossibility. It went against the very nature of the living, for from the smallest molecular-sized organisms to the largest beasts in the land, domination, even in the instances of symbiotic relationships, was key. There was always someone bigger, someone stronger, someone in control. How long could Raphael go contrary to his most basic needs and base instincts? Gabriela regarded him with renowned curiosity and interest. She looked at him in a way she had not since back when they had first crossed paths not far outside of Patia so many years ago. He was playing, nearly desperately, at being whatever it was she needed. Initially he had been himself, and then turned to this, and then changed in other subtle and not so subtle ways. He appeared a chameleon in his temperaments, and as changing as the seasons in regards to his personalities. But which was his true self? He was sending her away before she could runaway. He would incur as to her location and state of heath -- he would keep tabs on her. He gave her his permission to do as she pleased in the world, to explore, to taste of all that life had to offer, and yet his heavy hand remained upon her. She would always be his. His meaning was clear -- if she ran back into the devil's arms, he wanted her to know that it would mean nothing. His arrogance was astounding. “You’ll wait for me -- until I’ve had my fill of the world? You are so certain that I’ll come back to you, Raphael? After everything you’ve done to me? After everything you’ve taken from me? But what if I don’t? What if I never come back... Surely you will want to pursue a family, more children to use as jewels to adorn your crown.” Through impossibly dark lashes, that didn't have a lick of paint upon them, she gazed at him through thin but dark shadows. Her eyes took on the likeness of feline predators in the tall, dry grasses of the savannas. Being so much younger and much weaker than him it was easy to forget that she was, in nature, just like him -- a savage animal, a bloodthirsty predator. “I will leave tomorrow, as soon as the sun dips beyond the horizon.”
  50. 1 point
    King

    A Silence of Three Parts

    “You are responsible for the things you tame…” Yes, the elder was well-aware of the obligations that came with his desire to possess her. Gabriela liked to believed herself unbreakable, a wild and fiery spirit meant to roam the wilderness, land, sea, and sky. But Rafael alone had clipped her beautiful wings long ago, domesticating her with womanly and monarchical responsibilities befitting the royal blood in her veins. “…You’ve broken me, mind and body, and now you don’t want me anymore?” Rafael was barely able to contain the incredulous laughter bubbling up from his gut, but had she not turned away, she would have seen the way it twisted his lips into an amused little smirk. Passionate as he was, it was his darling cousin, the tempered, cold, and ‘indifferent’ one that lived in extremes. If she was not being policed like a criminal, shackled to his side with chains of ‘love’ (no matter how necessary it may have been at times), he was abandoning her. There existed no middle grounds in her relationships, no compromise, and the thought left a dreadful unease welling within her husband. Of course, Gabriela’s history of violent and dangerous relationships had only served as fuel for that burning, toxic mentality, but of all the men to take her hand, Rafael was undoubtedly the most aware and able to bring about change. He allowed her a heartbeat’s moment of space before following shadow, chasing her as he’d done for many a year. Resting the valleys of his massive hands on the small rounds of her shoulders, the elder leaned in and brushed his nose through the thickness of her dark hair, breathing in deep the sweet aroma of her natural scent. A child of darkness, of blood, she smelled of Atitlan in a way that awoke long-dead memories buried in his mind, exhumed them from unmarked graves and breathed life into them once again. “Did I say that you weren’t mine, Gabriela?” he asked, letting his hands spill over her shoulders and gently caress the lengths of her slender arms. “Did I say that this was the end of us, or that you were not my wife?” Taking her by one arm, Rafael slowly turned her to face him, hoping she might find the answers to the confusion that had bloomed through their bond in his eyes, and if not, then in the words he spoke next. “You will always be mine, Gabriela,” he purred, his expression content and severe. The hand that had gripped her arm was wandering over her body now, tracing its knuckles over her collarbone, then down into the valley between her breasts. He groped her left breast softly but with a possessiveness that was ingrained into his being, pinching her nipple through the thin fabric of her gown, then rolling it between his fingers. “There is nowhere you can go, nothing you can do, that will ever change that.” Rafael toyed with her for a moment longer, until her flesh was stiff to the touch, before letting her go. If she knew her cousin half as well as she liked to believe, she would know it was a warning, a promise that he was still very much himself, and that this conversation had remained civil only because he willed it so. “This palace is not my prison,” he finally elaborated after a moment. He curled a finger beneath her rounded chin, tilted her head back, forcing her molten gold eyes to behold his stormy blue ones. “I come and go as I please, and if I desired, I could venture the entire world before returning. I am here as frequently as I am because of you and our child, Gabriela. I see no reason that can’t—or shouldn’t—be the case for you. We are equals, are we not?” “And the child?” The tension seemed to be bleeding out of her, though her guard remained strong. Both her arms sank lower along her body, resting her dainty hands on the swell of her stomach. “I expect you’ll have me surrender him to you after he is born? What else could be expected from a woman like me? I gave away one child, it will not hurt me to do it again—right?” They were words that, at one time, would have inspired an unbridled fury in the elder, but now, merely roused the pity he housed for them both. These poor, star-crossed lovers could not for a second see beyond their doomed romance to ponder how inhospitable an atmosphere they were creating for their son. What would come of little Philippe, Rafael wondered. Would he become like his father, a man driven by nothing more than his extremist sense of love for a woman that was not his—or his mother, no less self-destructing and misguided, that wrapped her selfishness in the trappings of righteousness. “No,” he murmured, thumbing her cheek. “You, better than anyone, know that I would never do something like that, Gabriela. Our child,” he corrected her, “is the reason I’m doing this.” Rafael let his fingers swim through the chocolate sea of her hair, lifting the thick, luxurious tresses and letting them sink through the spaces between his fingers. He gently raked his talons along her scalp, and brushed aside the stray threads that dared attempt to veil her beauty from him. “I know you’ve conspired against me,” he said bluntly, his voice lacking the vigor it once held when leveling such bold accusations against her. “Or, if you haven’t, you would have soon. Rather than talking to me, trying to make things work, you would have tried to take our child away from me—our child, Gabriela. The one thing you know that I would do anything for, commit any change. You would have taken that away from me for a freedom that was already yours; a freedom you simply refuse to see. Why? Because you would rather stoke the flames of strife between us, force me to be the monster you claim I am, than admit that I am better for you, that I am what you need.” A frown creased his lips, deep and settled. “I’m not going to let you do that,” he warned her. “I’m not going to let you—either of you—tear apart our family because of past mistakes, because you and the devil are incapable of being civil. You’ll not take out your grievances with him on me and our unborn child. So please, go if you must,” he said more smoothly, punctuating the claim with an inviting wave of the hand, “and explore the world and see what it has to offer you. Enjoy yourself. Sip of the life you’ve craved. I will be here, ensuring our home remains as it should, and take care of the people we govern. I will inquire as to your location and the nature of your travels, but unless I feel it threatens our child or family, you’ll not see me interfere.” A more reasonable offer, she would never been given by another.
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