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The Obsidian Dragon. (Chapter 1)

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OOC: Read the Prologue here! This is a combination of myself and @Aleksei written within the tavern of legend.


A boom of thunder shook the air amidst the storm. The door of the tavern swung open as Scapechild entered. Soaked from head to toe with a tattered leathers, matted hair, and a longsword strapped to his waist; all eyes were drawn to him for a brief moment. It was as if he was infamous, if only for a few short seconds. Quickly the onlookers turned back to their previous activities. In one corner a pair of dwarves were arm wrestling - 5 or so eager men cheered them on as they awaited their turn against whomever won. In another were a few women, dressed in skimpy attire, assuring every passing man who looked to have even a few silver that their company was available. 

Scapechild's boots struck hard against the oak floor with every step, as he made his way towards the bar. A single stool available between a man, far past his drinking limits, and what looked to be a troll. Scape had never seen a friendly troll and guessed that it must've been a very ugly giant. In truth, there may not have been a difference between the two options. 

"New around here I see." The barkeep seemed calm amidst the chaos, endlessly cleaning an empty mug. "What can I get you?"

"Information." Scape looked around cautiously. "Ill take a pint as well." 

"Pint is 3 coppers. Information is a bit more."

Scape dropped 3 silvers onto the bar. "I'm looking for someone with historical knowledge. Ancient lore to be precise."

"The only man I know with that information, doesn't like to be found. 3 silver won't be near enough." Scape glared at the barkeep for a moment before taking out 3 more silver pieces. He gave a slight nod as to say, there won't be any more than that. The barkeep looked at the silver, grabbed a tab sheet and wrote on the back. 

Upstairs last room on the left

Scapechild took the sheet and made his way towards the stairs...

But there is a woman ready to spread the knowledge, like butter on warm bread, like dust to the wind - you know.

The man the bartender spoke of was long gone, off on another strange adventure to sate his need for knowledge. In his wake he left behind the woman ready to give away the wealth in his stead, though she can hardly do the method any justice, especially considering she has been on this earth for an insufficient amount of time. The man though ... he's been around since the beginning of time - or so he's told her. 

The woman lounged in a worn chair with a cup of steaming water held between scarred finger. Her feet were thrown on top of the table, the heels of her riding boots dirty and just as worn as the seat she sat in. While it's evident that the woman is a woman, by the natural curve of her lounging body and the braided hair thrown over her shoulder, her features are not so apparent. She held the steaming cup, making her appearance curious since she wore a mask of iron that covered all but one singular eye. 

If Scape knocked on the door, he'd be called in; if he walked in, he would notice her instantly. No matter the choice, he wouldn't be attacked or chastised or acknowledged. Once inside he'd noticed the smallness of the room, occupied by a table and chair, a bed, and other amenities that are useless other than to describe their surroundings. Across from the woman is another cup, almost as if she were expecting company. 

He wanted her; now he has her, now it's time to say what he needs. There's no room for introductions, but if he felt compelled to dance that old dance and sing that old song, he is welcome to do so. This is his moment; he may as well take it. 

Scapechild opened the creaking oak door of the dim-lit room. Instantly his eyes were fixed upon an iron mask that called to him in an unearthly way. 

The mask was adorn a woman; the man he searched for long gone. "I came here to meet a friend a mine," he began as he strolled over the empty chair, undoing his cloak and letting it drop to the floor, heavy from the water that soaked its fabric. "Nevertheless, it is always a pleasure to find a woman." Scapechild smiled as his eyes looked her over. On the outside he showed the bravado of a man simply looking at a woman he wished to bed, but his thoughts were something different. He held herself as if someone that knew how to fight. An assassin perhaps? Had the Varsii tracked him to this place, wherever it was, and beaten him to the scholar he was searching for? She wore the same red as the Varsii did, yet the style was unlike any he had ever seen. 

A weighted silence hung in the air permeated by the raindrops ticking against the tavern ceiling. "Tell me," Scape reached for the cup in front of him, smelled a sweet aroma not unlike tea, and took a sip. His upper lip twitched slightly, his reminder that he has never really liked tea. "What do you know of dragons?"

She watched him eye here and with her one eye, she did the same to him. The optic is a struggle of blue and green; both colors trying to claim the very small space they both occupy. It's a curious thing, exposed through a hole in the iron mask; it wandered from the tips of his booted feet, all the way to the hair atop his head. She watched him take his seat and through the silence, she heard the beating of his heart and the natural expansion of his lungs - alive, that's good.

The woman sat her cup down and returned to lounging in her chair. She let his question hang in the air for a moment or two as she flipped through her memory. Such a loaded question, she thought silently to herself.

"Enough to know that they vary in size, brands, styles and that they're not just a birdbrained beast breathing fire and stealing princesses."

She dropped her feet from the table and leaned forward, her right elbow digging into the worn top of the table while her chin balanced itself atop her knuckles. Again she looked at him, but this time she attached herself to the edge of his high-cheek. With such a wandering mind, she needed a place to look and that felt like the best place. This conversation may take minutes or it may go on for hours, depends on how long this man wants to dance around the subject.

"They are not foreign creatures to Valucre."

"They are not foreign to my home either." He stated. Although, in the back of his mind he was now more interested in Valucre than his mission. He came for answers, but merely gained more questions. Where was this Valucre? How had he arrived? What was beneath that mask? There was no time left. Scapechild had to find his answers or leave without them. "There is a dragon of legend, I heard about," He leaned forward, trying to stare into her eyes through the cracked mask, "who's scales were made of obsidian. The legend tells of a king who brought his entire kingdom against the dragon. In the end, it was only this king that survived and killed the dragon. Yet, to this end, the king had no kingdom left to rule." Scapechild cupped his hands together beneath his chin. "I seek the knowledge of that battle, and how the king managed to slay such a dragon."

He had hoped that too much was not said. There was no luxury of time on his side. Behind the sound of raindrops pattering against the ceiling, Scapechild had heard the three men that entered the tavern in search of him. Leaning back to await his answer, he slid his left hand beneath the view of the table and took hold of his sword's hilt. This night will end with bloodshed. 

Three men entered the tavern. Their clothes were red, tattered, and baggy. The two on the outside had a cutlass strapped to each hip, while the center man - bald, with battle worn scars etched throughout his face - carried a battle-axe in his left hand. They looked around at the faces that stared at them. An elf walked up to them; the stench of ale filling the air around him. His hair was white, but short for an elf, and a long straight scar went down the right side of his face from the bottom of his eye to his jaw. The elf wore no shirt, but a single metal pauldron on his left should with a strap across his chest. 

"All weapons must be sheathed or left at the door here." It was obvious that the elf was having trouble keeping himself from slurring his words. 

The bald man straightened his jaw at the elf. "Where's the man with the red leathers?" The two outer men gripped their scimitars as a threat to the elf. 

"I see this does not concern me." The elf said turning and walking back towards his table. Waving his hand in the air to signal the three men, "I saw him walk upstairs."

The woman turned her ironed face towards the door, expecting it to be kicked down. Though it would tickle her if they knocked, seeing that they are men on a mission, manners are hardly considered. 

She could sense them, not because she's a person of grand magical tricks, but because she's learned through the years that you feel the air and you listen to the stones. There are so many stories your surroundings call tell you, all you have to do is teach yourself to look outside the normal murmuring of peoples and humming of background distractions. The group of men that's now wandering up the steps were hard to ignore though, they had a smell about them that said determination and no-nonsense business.

"Than I suggest you start in Nu Martyr of Renovatio."

She reached inside the fold her shirt and withdrew a piece of paper and slapped it atop the table; the door is given another quick glance, her mind calculating the minutes before their interruption.

"Their Cosmic Library may have what you're looking for."

Quickly she wrote on the paper with her finger, making instructions for him to follow just in case he got lost along the way. 

"There's a woman there that can help you since the library is no small thing."

She slid the paper across the table to him, a single finger tapping it, causing the lettering to glow and then disappear. Can't be having anyone be nosey in their business. 

"I suppose you have to go now."

"The fun we would have if I had more time." Scapechild smiled as he looked her up and down once more. He hastily grabbed the paper and threw it between his chest and shirt. Darting to the doorway, his simple oaken chair fell to the floor with a thud. Scape burst forth from the room and almost fell over the railing of the second floor. To his right he saw the three men. Their eyes met for a moment, and the chase was on. Scapechild ran towards the left and dashed into an adjacent room, spinning around and drawing his sword. Even the best of swordsmen will have a hard time against three opponents. He would have to outwit them to escape. The men flooded into the room. Scapechild had positioned himself in the back of the room, with a round wooden table, and two chairs between them. The man with the battle-axe stayed in the center while the other two began to circle around each side. Scape grabbed hold of one of the chairs and tossed it at the foe to his right whom put his guard up, but was staggered backwards. 

Quickly turning towards the enemy on his left, their swords began to clash. Three quick strikes and Scape had found his opening. With a quick jab from the hilt of his sword the enemy's nose was broke. Scapechild grabbed his and tossed him into the foe on the right knocking them both to the ground. Scapechild ran and leapt off the table in a dive, narrowly evading the swing of the battle-axe. As he hit the ground he rolled forward in a perfect summersault. His momentum was too much. Unable to stop as he regained his footing upright, Scapechild crashed through the railing this time and crashed through a large wooden table below. 

It took a moment for the wind to return to his lungs. His vision was dazed and even his hearing had gone dull for a moment. Scapechild slowly pulled himself off the floor, ignoring the crowd of onlookers. He sheathed his sword and made a bee-line for the door. He flew through the doorway and into a small mountain village. This was not the same cobblestone road he had remembered when he entered the tavern. It was no longer raining here, nor was it night. It was midday, with a cold, crisp feel in the air. Turning around confused, he opened the door that had slammed itself shut on his exit. Sure enough, it was a small mountain village inn. No longer was it the great tavern he had been in. 

Was I dreaming? Scapechild thought to himself. He reached into his shirt and found the piece of paper that woman had given him. 

Nu Martyr of Renovatio

At least he knew where to head next, and the three men were no longer nearby.... 

Scapechild slowly entered the inn, trying his best to ignore the searing pain that still resided in his lower back. A small breeze amidst the frosty air was all that could be heard. He looked around at the dusty, worn-down, wooden lobby. A few benches for meal time and a small counter to check in at. The odd part was the lack of people. There were no patrons, no beggars, nor was there even a host to greet him. Scape held his scabbard firm, ready to draw his sword if need be. Yet still, there was nothing. "Hello?" His voice was surely loud enough to be heard by anyone that might be here. "I'm seeking a room and a meal. Is there anyone here that can help me?" Still there was no answer. An uneasy feeling crept its way to the back of his neck. FWXFQU0.jpg

Scapechild went back outside. Here too, the small mountain town was empty. There was no one in the small road that passed through the whole town. No children in the streets, no women cleaning clothes, no merchants selling wares. This town seemed utterly empty and yet... Scapechild noticed something quite odd. Down the road was a small building with a makeshift forge attached. This was surely the town blacksmith. The forge held embers as if recently lit. Drawing his sword, Scape made his way down the road towards the forge. He did not like the feeling he got from this place - the hairs on his arms began to raise. Reaching the furnace, he looked inside. Sure enough the embers were fresh. They began to glow brighter, a curious phenomenon. Then a great blast of smoke and ash burst forth, sending Scape flying a few feet back. 

He scrambled to his feet, picking up the sword he had dropped. In front of him stood a humanoid creature made entire of ash and soot. Every movement of this creature seemed to crack invisible bones. "What the fuck are you?" The creature screamed at him; high pitched, agonizing, and utterly terrifying, the scream seemed to penetrate a person to their very core. Scapechild ran forward and thrust his sword into the creature's chest. It looked at him through the glowing holes that should be eyes. The creature swung its arm, only to be narrowly avoided as Scapechild removed his sword and backed up. Putting space between him and that creature was the plan he could think of at the moment. 

The creature was not deterred. It began to lurch forward. Each step a crackling and forced mess that would make even the sturdiest of men cringe. Two more swings of his sword - one across the chest, the other through the face, cheek to cheek - with no affect on the creature. Once more Scapechild put distance between the two of them, not allowing the creature a chance to attack. He had only two options left. He could run, or use the ace in his sleeve. Scapechild looked down at his left hand, covered by fingerless gloves. A small glowing glyph began to appear. He thrust his hand towards the creature. "Zephyr!" He called out. A translucent blue wave burst forth from his hand. The force of the wave was enough to cause the creature to take a step back. As well, the black ash of the creature was blown back into a thick cloud, leaving a humanoid shape of ember left standing there. Before there was even a chance that this creature could recover from such an attack, Scapechild made his move. Three more blows from his sword. The creature's right arm cut off, the left leg cut, to drop the creature to one knee, and then he turned the blade around and plunged it through the creatures head. In an instant the creature dropped to a pile of ash and soot. 

Another high pitched scream shook the air. Scapechild turned to find five more of these creatures walking down the road. That spell that Scapechild had cast, was not something he could do again anytime soon....


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HrUCLQ6.png"Not bad."

To his left, a woman appeared from the seemingly thin air. A smile graced her delicate features while her opal hues admire the unfolding scene before her. The five creatures of fire and stone marched forth; streams of melted substance drip from their screaming maws. A few of them held makeshift weaponry forged from their bodies - an ax and a hammer. The rest looked ready just to use their hands and feet to destroy their apparent enemies. Primitive, clearly, but that doesn't make them any less dangerous. 

With well-practiced grace, the woman positioned herself in front of the gentleman, giving him a moment to collect himself and to also save his random life. One of the molten creatures had grasped a large handful of earth and hurled it towards the two. In both of her small hands, she held her curved blades; they glowed with a warmth that penetrated your skin all the way to your bones. 

When she had stepped in front of the gentleman, she raised her right arm and deflected the thrown debris with a strength not first assumed she has. The blade had been turned downwards and pressed against her forearm, using it to split the attack in half and shift it safely off to the side. It was comfortable, a reaction she's done countless times over the course of her small life. Not a drop of fear or even an inkling of curiosity for these creatures showed on her face or her actions. 

In a flourish, the woman pressed the ends of her blades together, creating a pole weapon. Proudly, she tapped the ground with the end of her weapon; her other hand rested casually on the curve of her hip. 

"So, what's the plan boss?"

Her voice spilled over her deep smile; the accent escaping the woman is exotic and enticing, something between French with a warm Latin tinge to it. As strange as her accent, the warrior-woman is relatively tall, perhaps five-feet and an inch or two above five inches. Her red hair is piled atop her head, creating a bunch of unruly curls that fall to shape her kind face. Opalescent eyes twinkled. 


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Reaching into the makeshift trap at her feet, a young woman gripped her dinner and carefully cut the twine off its leg. The hare was small, dull, and uninteresting to take in -- not unlike her current life. She gently thumbed the space under its nose, soiling her thin fingers with the crimson blood leftover from when its heart burst, a scowl marring her pleasant features. 'Nothing interesting happens around here anymore. Perhaps it's time to return to the city.' Letting out a long sigh, she stood upright once more. She had her next meal. That would have to be enough for now.

As she pushed her lithe frame through the underbrush, her hands flew up over her ears as a horrible screech shattered the of the forest. Animals and critters fled all around her: birds flying overhead, swarms of bugs crawling away; even a deer was so reckless in its terror that it nearly crashed into the huntress's arm as it scrambled past. Ellara too turned away from the noise and leaned into the motion of running before realizing her feet weren't moving. A tremendous thrill lit through her like a flash of lightning, and her adrenaline level began to rise, bringing with it an uneasiness that came close to the feeling of sickness. This was it - this was what she'd been missing. Excitement. Purpose. Passion.

Her arms lifted toward her bow, raising it from the quiver on her back. 'Hello again, old friend.'

She ran.

After sprinting through the woods for a short time, she came stumbling out of the thicket before recovering to the sight of a rather fragile-but-lovely-looking woman standing in front of a man that clearly was not doing so amazingly. The woman's mouth made small motions - she was talking to him. It was impossible to hear from the distance, but Ellara could see the slight movement even from afar. Reaching back to her quiver quickly, she rubbed the familiar and unique fletching of each arrow until she fished one with dove plumage out. She knocked the arrow, inhaled sharply as she raised the weapon and drew, and then a cruel grin stretched over her face as she loosed.

Despite the rounded tip of the arrow, it flew in a perfect line and smashed one of the creatures in the back, erupting in a booming burst of air as wind pressure slammed through the monster. As the remainder of the airwave pushed her raven hair out of her face, Ellara laughed with the rush of exhilaration running through her body before she fell silent to realize now she had lost her potential element of stealth.


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Scapechild stood there, stunned at the woman whom appeared from nowhere. His mind so lost in the moment he could no longer hear the cracking of bone from the creatures' movements. He was unable to feel the cold of the air around him. He was barely even able process the boulder that was thrown at them, only to be deflected by her. He was unsure why he stood there so lost. Perhaps it was because she seemed to come from nowhere, here, where these monsters stood. Perhaps it was because of her beauty that seemed to catch the very air around her, pulling the eyes of all things upon her. Or perhaps it was because he, as a knight, should not have been saved by a woman. 

The moment her polearm hit the ground, the world came crashing in. The moment he missed flooded his synapsis and snapped him back to reality. "So what's the plan boss?" She spoke with a heavy accent that Scape had never heard. 

"What the fuck is going on here?" While the question Scape asked was technically directed towards this woman, in truth it was more towards himself. He repositioned himself to her side, yet still slightly in front of her. “The plan is twofold. First, stay close to me. We will have a better chance together than alone. Second….” He paused before nodding his head down the road away from the creatures. “We run.” With those final words Scape looked back at her only to be met by a gaze that stated there would be no running. Before Scapechild could utter another word, he jumped in fright as one of the creatures exploded in into a cloud of ash. A moment later the wind had moved the dust from the air, revealing a mostly broken ember body standing perfectly still. It resembled the same ember husk from when Scapechild had used his runic magic on one, yet this one was missing an arm now. No doubt from the force of the explosion. 

Scapechild thrust his sword into the ground and pulled a dagger, from the sheath that at the back of his waist. With a couple steps forward and a full force throw, the dagger flew through the air. Unfortunately, Scapechild missed the creature... by quite a lot. Scape looked back at the woman whom appeared from nowhere, only to see her staring off towards the distant forest. Sure enough, there, at the edge of the trees, was the outline of a person. Although it was too far away for Scapechild to see, he knew well enough that whoever it was caused that explosion.

The woman shoved Scapechild hard with one hand, sending him crashing to the ground before she sidestepped another rock that was hurled at them. Twice now she had saved him.

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HrUCLQ6.pngShe was happy to know that her expression conveyed her emotions perfectly. One does not run away, let alone from beasts who dare to destroy all in their path. The woman is not easily swayed by the sight of such creatures, even though her awareness of the danger keeps her a bit weary, especially since the man was so ready to depart when he could stay and fight. There is little judgment from her though; she can understand that sometimes a person must run if they wish to fight another day. 

But today he has her, today he doesn't have to worry about life or death, just what's right and their success. 

Now that there are three against the mighty group of beasts, she began to piece together a brief plan that'll benefit all of them. Slender fingers tightened around the body of her weapon, and the heels of her tall boots dug into the dry dirt; again she protected him, but this time he would feel the force of her power behind the subtle push that might as well throw him across the country. She often forgets the kind of blood coursing through her veins and the fact that she's a woman, something that's supposed to be subtle and sweet. 


She points the end of her polearm to the woman cloaked by shadow, shouting at her above all the commotion of grumbling and moaning - the sounds of monsters. 

"Shoot again! Strike the arms and legs!"

In a flurry of red hair and smiles, she turned around and grabbed the gentleman by his arm, hoisting him back to his feet and looping her arm in his. Companionship can be one hell of a motivator, and she is going to show him how well they're going to do against these monsters making their way towards them. 

"I need an opening, and you two will give it to me. She will shoot the arrows; you will hit them with your sword and continue to incapacitate them the best you can. I will deliver the final blow."

Pure, natural course of action that can go either well or wrong. For now, she will work with what she has (the same goes for the other two) and operate under the assumption that they're going to get through this until they don't. She gave his arm a quick, reassuring squeeze before she pushed him forward to do the deed given to him. Unfortunately she wasn't able to bestow any of that same reassurance to the woman, but hopefully, her voice had carried over from earlier and gave the lady a gentle push. 

Edited by Aleksei

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Unsurprisingly, the other two fighters noticed her appearance on the battlefield. The man honestly seemed stunned by what was happening, but the woman apparently took charge and started yelling something at her from across the way. Although she knew it wouldn’t help her hear any better, Ellara squinted as she tried to understand the jumbled tangle of words flying through the air. It was pointless. Leaning back, she breathed in deep and thought quickly: ‘What is the most logical thing to do here?’

After her pause, the young woman collected herself and reached back, removing a series of arrows from her quiver. She hadn’t necessarily chosen them - it was more like she had let fate decide for her. The first was fletched with blue feathers, with a rounded tip filled with a small amount of water. Second, she had another of her dove-down arrows. The last was black, and had a dark, reflective, flat tip. ‘Interesting. This can work.’

Without much pause, she knocked all three, kneeling and taking a long moment to aim each carefully before releasing the string.

As her breath left her, it seemed to push the arrows to fly faster. The white hit one of the creatures’ arms and let out another violent air blast. The blue splattered across the back of another in a cloud of steam that smelled like a blacksmith quenching in brine. The black seemed to have missed, clattering hopelessly to the ground behind one of the monsters. But a half-second later it erupted into a series of gigantic obsidian shards, several of which pierced the nearest target. Ellara smiled shortly, then advanced slightly to put herself in a better position for her next few shots, as the majority of the arrows she had left were designed with shorter range. As she jogged forward, she readied another new arrow, thinking about where it would be best to strike. 

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A reassuring squeeze upon Scapechild’s arm sent a sharp twinge of pain up its length. Scape was still trying to get his bearings after the last push from this woman, let alone the battle directions she was ordering out. Thankfully, from years of combat, his instincts would often act before his mind. With this, Scapechild found himself running towards the creatures. The first in his way was the ember husk that stood, missing limbs and seeming frozen while falling. Scape cut off the second arm and moved past it. He knew his mission was not to finish these creatures, but to put them in a position for the woman to do so.

A few feet from the creature was the dagger he had thrown. As he started to pick it up, another explosion let loose, making him jump. “Fuck!” He exclaimed, dropping the dagger and cringing backwards. He grits his teeth and picked up the dagger and sheathed it. Scape looked at the 4 enemies left before him. The first was modeling the same ember husk pose as the one before. This time however, it was missing a leg and still had both arms. The next looked as though it had a sort of acid trying to melt through the regenerating ashen flesh of the monster.

Quickly Scape moved forward. He took out the other leg of the new ember husk and kept his pace forward. He ducked under the swing of the melting creature and slashed through its torso, cutting it in half. With the help of the acid-like substance, the creature was unable to regenerate and was left in two pieces upon the ground. The next creature had been pierced by a large obsidian shard. For a moment, Scapechild was taken aback by this sight. The obsidian reminded him of the dragon that plagued his home. He pushed this thought aside as the creature ripped itself from the spire.

Scapechild used the spire to run up and jump over the creature. A strong slash through the right-half of the creature from shoulder to hip as he came down. When Scape turned around to find the final creature, he was hit by what felt like a boulder and sent through the wooden wall of the building next to him. It was not a boulder however, that hit him. It was the arm of the last creature. With blurry vision he tried to make out his surroundings. It looked like the inside of a barn, with a second-floor terrace-like area. The creature entered the building, its distinct bone-cracking movements echoing against the walls.

The creature held a sword no doubt made of the same substance this creature was. A sword fight was something Scapechild was quite used to. He was in pain from the blows he had taken, but his determination rose when saw the creature’s choice of weapon. A few sword swings in and the ashen monster managed to punch him in the face. Each swing of its sword easily deflected by Scape, however the same could not be said of its follow-up attacks. A few more blows and Scape fell to the ground, kicked in the ribs, and then thrown across the room.

He pushed himself up, trying his best to ignore the screaming pain of his most likely broken ribs. He saw a ladder to his side and sheathed his sword before rushing to it. Halfway up the creature swung its sword and destroyed the ladder. Scapechild had just barely managed to jump high enough off it to reach the ledge of the second floor. He pulled himself up, slowly but surely. When he made it to the top he looked back for the creature, but it was no longer there. Then he heard the bone-cracking sounds. He turned, and the creature was there, atop the second floor with him.

Again he tried to duel the creature with his sword. He pushed himself as hard as he could to move his body faster, relying only on his instincts as a swordsman. In an instant the creature was disarmed of its sword. The creature let out a blood-curdling scream and grabbed Scape by the neck. He was lifted off the ground and pinned to the nearby wall. Trying to gasp for air Scapechild frantically hit the creatures arm. It was no use. The creature was far stronger than he was, and his vision was getting blurry. It would be only moments before he lost consciousness altogether. It was then that he remembered the dagger he had picked up. He grabbed it from its sheath and with three good thrusts he tore the creatures arm off at the elbow.

Scape dropped to the ground. Before he could gather his breath or even his thoughts, he plunged the dagger into the creature’s chest and pushed him farther and farther until the creature fell from the second floor. He rolled up his left sleeve and looked at the four runic glyphs etched into his arm. He held his hand out, the third runic glyph beginning to glow. “Vahn’tier!” He screamed, and electricity started to spark around his arm. Then in a flash and a loud boom!, a bolt of lightning burst forth from his hand and obliterated the creature below.

Scapechild was sent flying back by the force of his spell. He laid there on the ground for a moment. Knowing full well, that the creature could not have survived that. A severe pain coursed through his left arm to the point that he felt no pain from the other areas of his body that he should. After a moment, he sat up, and slid his way over to the wall. Holding his shoulder, tears began to roll down his cheeks. Scapechild was unsure if he could go on. In the course of a few days his whole world had changed.

His prince was missing. His kingdom was being destroyed by an unbeatable foe. He was Adven only knows how far from that kingdom. He was humiliated by being saved by a woman. Knowing his luck, the other person who helped would also be a woman. He was fighting impossible creatures that were after him, with no reason why. To top it all off, he was no longer able to use his left arm. Sure this should only last a few days, but Scapechild was unsure if he would regain its use ever again. He had never had to use two glyphs on the same day and even one glyph is risky enough. The only thing that gave him any peace were the last words his King said to him.

“Worry not, Arynorr.” King Brandfire said. His kind eyes reflected within the sound of his words.

“You know I hate being called by my first name, your highness.” Scapechild quickly replied. The king smiled at this.

“Your brother will find my son. You will find the answer to this legend-“

“And what if the kingdom falls while I am away? How am I to leave Valdrissia in this state?”

The king moved closer to Scapechild. “We shall be fine. Valdrissia is not a land. It is not a town. Not a castle or even a king. It is its people. As long as even one Valdrissian lives, so does Valdrissia. As long as you are out there, we are alive. Go. Find the way to defeat this dragon. Save our kingdom, no matter the cost.”

Edited by Scapechild

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HrUCLQ6.pngThe woman had stood still, watching the scene of explosions and chases happen before her. Her previous plan will have to be better manipulated to fit the current situation, but that is not an issue. Understanding that this sudden group of fighters hasn't meshed just yet; with the gentleman reacting crudely to the exploding arrow and how the bolt was a bit too close for her comfort, there are a few things to be worked on. For now, this will do.

Taking in a lung full of charcoal air, the woman stepped forward, allowing the world to slow. Opalescent eyes glowed, allowing the flecks of color to disappear into the pools of cream tinged golden. Around her, the air turned heavy and thick with little streams of electricity bursting with each step she took. With the other two putting the situation under control, there was hardly any more threats left but the earth is tainted, and she won't go until it's healed.

Her final steps were quick and used her polearm she launched herself the last feet between she and what was left of the beasts. Not allowing herself to become distracted by the gentleman's push through a building, the woman slammed the end of her weapon into the earth, causing the ground beneath her to shake and shiver. Golden tendrils of electricity flourished beneath her, spreading wide around her in an exaggerated circle that reached outward into the forest.  

The monsters caught in her circle would freeze, become full of the golden light to the point of exploding, but instead of doing so they'd become part of the scenery. She changed them into mounds of greenery that could be admired but never resurrected. Her two companions would feel the warmth of her power as it spread its way forward, but unlike the beasts they've jsut fought, they won't become part of the land. The warmth would reach their bones, penetrating skin and sinew, healing what it could if they had obtained minor injuries. Since this movement required some minor concentration towards their enemies, she couldn't do much to treat her companions fully. 

Once the beasts were stopped and destroyed, the woman took a deep gulp of air and stood up, her weapon still glowing and lodged into the ground. Opal hues returned to their unnatural color and the electricity of her movements dissipated into the heated air. 

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Now that the woman was well within visual range, Ellara studied her as she moved. The level of control was astounding, from her steps to the magic she wielded. The man had at least seemed reasonable, running away like a normal person should - 'Wait, does that make me abnormal?She considered how she felt about the strangers. Initially, she believed she might have had something to do with the man's inexplicable disappearance, but now she was more convinced it had been one of the two of them after seeing lightning split a building nearly in two and an overwhelming magic engulf the remaining enemies. Recognition clicked. 'I'm in over my head here.She grimaced and pulled away from the scene back into the forest, tracing around the edges of the town until she had a building between herself and the female. The magic felt familiar, but familiarity meant little to her as she was used to almost any type of magic.

No, Ellara decided36063304_1750385325030188_7217438901634334720_n.jpg?_nc_cat=0&oh=da900690b2198cfe9d1c9493c8d3bc83&oe=5BB0CAA7 she did not want to be too close to these people. They were dangerous, on a level she was not. She was an archer, for blessing's sake, an apprentice artificer that would never finish her training. These two needed no help from the likes of her.

Biting her lip, she stepped out from the trees and ran to the building, crouching near the door and checking the handle. As she suspected, the townspeople had fled in a rush, and the door was unlocked. Pushing her way inside, the young woman recognized the common items of a near-destitute family. 'Well, if they were poor before, I'm certain this isn't going to make them much poorer. Especially if their lives have already been stolen from them.' It was an excuse to make herself feel better, but she stayed strong in her decision. Survival was the only goal for her, and she refused to submit to personal feelings when what was necessary was in front of her. Shuffling across the floor carefully, she began going through various shelves and cabinets, attempting to remain quiet. If the two people could detect life-forces, they'd know exactly where she was, regardless, but she was gambling that they had exhausted a good chunk of their resources and would be unwilling to use any more in search of her. 'I wasn't that helpful... No reason to involve me further.Despite the thoughts she had, Ellara knew the odds were decent that they'd at least physically look for her. Her search hastened.

Finally, she found what she was looking for, after tearing through a good majority of the house. Salt. A small block, which honestly might not be enough, and probably not well-refined, she was betting it was sea salt and not mined. Sea salt was much more common as a trade good since it was easier to create, so it wasn't much of a stretch. Perhaps she was shooting in the dark, but she had been doing so for a while either way. Moving with the quick practice of someone that has been doing something most of their life, Ellara began drawing magic circles on the ground, shoving anything out of the way as needed. In her rush, she recognized that what she was about to attempt was dangerous, but she knew the risks associated with it and knew that running around the wilds with no preparations while such creatures were loose was, invariably, more dangerous than rapidly creating multiple magical items. By the time she was done drawing, the house looked more like a witch's hut than a place of residence, circles stretching partially up walls, ancient and lost runes scribbled seemingly randomly and everywhere. She then began laying out ingredients, the first of which was candles, which she jammed at every junction where circles met until the dim room was a massive tripping hazard. Behind these catalysts came the actual reagents, some of which she had stolen from the owners of the building, others she supplied on her own. Arrows were everywhere, and seemed to be the only consistent objects. For the most part, the other items were vaguely related to ideas and concepts, like a cup of fresh water with sea salt and kelp sitting in the bottom to represent the sea, or a pile of volcanic ash and sand to represent obsidian shards. In some places there seemed to be a place where a reagent should be, but wasn't. After pacing through to make sure she had laid out everything she needed, Ellara knelt beside the first circle.

From her bag she produced a single, tattered book, which she opened and stared at before moving across the room and placing it on a shelf. She then returned to the first of the circles and squinted at the texts, cursing quietly. She still didn't understand it. Lifting her hands up briefly, she laid them out over the circle.

A low humming sound began at her fingertips as the floor began to vibrate underneath her, slowly spreading out to the rest of the room. In one massive, reality-warping, thrumming circle, the magic crawled over and across the floor and walls, stretching until it encompassed each of the circles. A pale purple glow emanated from the runes, spreading to anything written in salt, and for a breathtaking moment nothing else happened. Then, the sound erupted out of the building, shattering the windows and sending Ellara's hair flying back. All of the reagents began to dissolve, a slow process through which Ellara held her breath. She could feel the pain starting to sink into her small lungs as the last of the salt and other items evaporated, leaving behind nothing but the arrows, the woman, and a few threads of magic clinging to spots where runes had been.

She gasped and violently began coughing, blood erupting from her nose and lungs as she struggled to steady herself against the floor. Her hands felt swollen and thick, and her limbs like they were trying to function without her bones inside them. She could hear the footsteps of others approaching through the pounding of her heartbeat - though she had worked at incredible speeds and the magic had been as quick as it could have been, she had taken too long. Dragging her frame across the floor, she grasped her arrows and pulled them against herself like a dying mother clutching her newborn baby. Having obtained her prize, she reached over to her quiver and began thumbing through the arrows. The strangers were almost there. Her numb fingers were useless as she tried to grip one of her green-fletched arrows, but she decided that could work as well and instead just slammed the weight of her dead limb down on the tip instead. Immediately healing energy rushed up her arm and began to restore her, repairing the blood vessels that had burst with her overexertion. Someone was pushing on the door, and by the time they got through Ellara was beginning to stand, albeit shakily. She stumbled over to a wall and slammed into it, exhaustion apparent. Her eyes looked almost dead as she addressed the doorway:

"Don't ask what happened, because I'm not going to explain it to anyone."

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qbzUzuR.jpgScapechild. That name meant something in his land. The scape were creatures of myth, although their existence is truth. They were the first creatures to walk Venneran, and they wove magic throughout; as though it were a large tapestry. By the will of the gods, the scape created more creatures, each one complex and different. It did not take long before the creatures began to fight one another - predators stalking prey. The three races however - humans, elves, and dwarves - did not fight for survival, but over trivial things. The gods did not like this and punished the scape for their atrocities. The scape were stripped of immortality and the ability to reproduce. The scape used their magic to extend their lives by centuries, perhaps millennia. No one really knows how long. They are never to be seen by other creatures. Sometimes when a person with great destiny is born, what is left of the scape will come and impart some of their magic upon that person. When this happens, it is tradition to give them the surname Scapechild.

Scapechild slowly stood. HIs arm throbbing with a pain greater than he could ever imagine. He forced himself over towards his sword. Crack! Scape reacted with a swing of his sword, but these creatures felt nothing from the steel. Scapechild on the other hand, felt a burning blade pierce his chest. He was lifted off the ground. The monster staring at him with glowing eyes. In a flash of light Scape was blinded. Moments later he noticed that he felt no blade within his chest. He felt no pain within his arm, or his back. He felt... nothing.

"My child." A soft female void spoke out. "Open your eyes." With those words the blinding light began to fade. Scapechild found himself in a white space, seemingly infinite in nature. MIllions of stars lined the skies and even beneath his feet, for he was standing upon glass. "You were killed by an ashen golem. A creature of pure malice. The power entrusted by the creatures of myth you know as the scape, has allowed me to save you. However... as with all things, it comes with a price."

Scapechild noticed his reflection within the glass. It was hard at first to make out, but with enough focus he saw his new form. He was younger, much younger - 17 if he had to guess. His hair was now a little longer on the top with the sides and back shaved. He wore clothes that were completely foreign to him. A white shirt, black pants that seemed to close just after his knees, and boots. 

"Even now the memories of your former self are slipping away. When you leave this place, you will have forgotten it all."

"What of my family?" Scapechild began to ask, but then... He didn't have a family, did he? They were already gone. 

"Close your eyes once more, as I imbue you with the knowledge of your new power. Use it Scapechild, and defeat the obsidian dragon." He closed his eyes at her last words and felt his very soul falling. An intense heat burned in his head as knowledge bore its way inside his memories, before launching themselves throughout his body turning them to instinct. He opened his eyes and dropped a couple feet before landing on the wooden floor of the barn's upper terrace. In front of him was the ashen golem, having been thrown against the wall, beginning to stand. Scapechild raised his hand - palm inward - to eye level. A small, green, semi-translucent stone appeared. Soul ShardHe grabbed it and thrust his hand out to the side. The blade and hilt of a sword appeared, floating an inch above and below his fist. He slashed the golem twice before rolling out of the way of an attack. Scapechild smiled as he saw the wounds on the creature. The wounds were not healing. He threw his sword into the chest of the golem, before running up the front of the creature, grabbing his sword in the process. A quick spin in the air, before coming down with a strong slash, removed the golem's head - turning the creatures back into a pile of ash and soot. Along with the remains, Scapechild noticed there were three stones, of similar make to his soul shardSoul Fragment Scapechild, released his sword - it disappeared in an effect that looked as though it shattered - then put his hand out over the stones. They shot to his hand in small beams of light. He once more raised his hand to eye level and another soul fragment seemed to appear. When he grabbed this one it seemed to disappear in the same manner as his sword, only to be replaced by a pair of fingerless gloves already covering his hands. He dropped down from the terrace and left the barn. Looking around at the small village now filled with piles of ash and soot, he noticed the red haired woman. "I see you can kill these golems as well." He said as he walked up to her. "Are you a catalyst as well?"

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HrUCLQ6.pngShe was confused and openly wore that confusion on her young face. By the way she held herself and commanded her surroundings, not many could guess that she is a young girl. The iron in her shoulders and spreading to her back made her stand above those taller than her; surrounded by her enemies, she appeared to be comfortable in the middle of battles and wars. All this posturing and the expression on her face said she was at odds with what she sees. 

The world is a strange thing, and strange things happen all the time. The creatures that had attacked this place had been a random occurrence; she's never seen the beasts before in her homeland and assumed it was due to change. Her mother spoke how the world is a thing not many have fully discovered, and through time things change and never stop. This must be one of those times.


She rolled the word in her mouth a few times, tasting its curious flavor. Not exactly sure what he was asking, she withdrew her weapon from the ground and approached him with cautious steps. 

"I'm not exactly sure what you are asking, so ... I can't give you an appropriate answer."

There were questions she had for him, but she set them aside as there was a shift in the air. Magic is a curious thing, and many have names for it often associated with light and dark. Healing is seen as good, thus it's light; necromancy is bad thus it's dark. Such umbrella terms have some misrepresented connotations to what is truly good and bad. Her first reaction was to be angry at the shift because no good comes from this kind of magic being produced, except that is a lie. 

Cooled, she looks to her companion with a familiar smile. 

"Come, it looks like our archer is up to something."

Waving him to follow her, they move towards the house and enter into a sight that is foreign to her but feels a bit too familiar for her comfort. She looked at the archer having a bit of a struggle standing.

"Well, next time you should be a little less conspicuous with your actions. This is your business, so I'll not delve further."

Stepping aside so the man can enter the home, she folded her arms and thought for a few seconds.

"It's obvious you're not from here, this world Valucre," she pointed to him. "I can smell it - a difference. You wandering around by yourself isn't safe."

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Ellara didn't grace the other person with an answer. Nor did she seem interested in determining what they looked like, or if it was a really effeminate man or a masculine woman talking. Instead, she rested against the wall with a dull look on her face before the stranger came into the room, causing her to step back in shock.

"Who the hell is this boy?!"

She seemed to be trying to move, but ended up just slumping forward and falling. She caught herself on a piece of furniture and pushed herself back upright, squinting hard as her lips formed a thin line that devolved to a frown.

"Nope, he's not the man from before - I don't mistake color blobs for other, not-so-similar color blobs. I followed that man here because I was worried about him, but now I'm just confused. I don't deal with children." She glanced at the other. "And no offense, but you don't seem to be in need of me. I'm not a babysitter."

There was a long pause in which she said nothing, and then she quite rudely blurted, "Wait did you just say smell? You're not human, are you?" All too quickly a look of horror spread over the woman's face as she moved her unsteady eyes from form to unfamiliar form, slowly backing up until she bumped into another piece of furniture. "Neither of you." She sat down heavily and swallowed hard. Her eyes darted back and forth as she seemed to be thinking intently of something before she glanced up, "What exactly are you two doing out here?" Ellara physically pulled her legs in and crossed them, then offered, "Since I'm the 'normal' one it seems, I'll start: I'm Ellara - artificer, survivalist, and occasionally, sharpshooter. I followed that other guy here. Not worth going into why."

A heavy hand fell on Ellara's shoulder. "Lara." The elderly man's voice was cracking, but she could hear the smile in it. "Do you know why you shouldn't trust stairs?" A long, weighted sigh. "No, master, why not?" "They are always up to something, Lara." His withering voice splintered into a jubilant laugh so infectious, even Ellara and her grumpy self broke out a smile. "Very funny, ser."

They paused for dinner and he passed her his horrible tea, which she drank with a practiced pokerface. He tapped his cup and didn't drink. She placed hers down on the table.

"I want you to go gather some more materials, Lara." She nodded, clearly displeased, but not enough to voice that opinion. "You're going to be gathering components for something special - a piece of glass that will correct your vision." Ellara just stared at him emptily. "You are the perfect student in all other manners, Lara, but the fact that you can't even begin to learn to read and write is unacceptable and will always hinder you. You've nearly perfected your sigils through rote memorization, but there will come a time when that will not be enough. You may need to adjust, or change, or - heaven forbid - grow. I want you to be able to do this, and dammit, what kind of magickal artificers would we be if we couldn't craft something to fix your blurry eyes?" He smiled wide enough that his teeth showed, his way of indicating happiness to her. "Alright? We will go over everything you need this evening and you can set out first thing tomorrow."

Ellara's dark eyes squinted hard as she took her master's hand in her own. He nodded purposefully, then turned, pulling his hand away, and started haphazardly cramming items into a backpack. "I'll make sure everything is ready for you. Do you have any questions?"

"I do, master."

Surprised, the old man turned and raised his eyebrows, which he knew his student couldn't very well distinguish. 

"Will you ever trust me enough not to lie to me, ser?"

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"Scapechild," he replied. "Though Scape shall be enough." He held his hand towards his face, a small blue stone seemed to appear. He crushed it in his hand before it seemingly transformed into a small bottle fill with a red liquid. "This should help you." He placed the drink in front of Ellara. "You are right that I am not human." Turning towards the red-haired woman. 

"I am what is known as a catalyst. You see, there are these creatures... ancient, mystical-" he seemed to be looking for a certain word. "Divine! creatures. They were created first by Adven. In turn they created all the other creatures and wove magic into the world like a tapestry. However, when Adven and the other gods saw humans and the constant wars they got in with each other, they became furious. These divine creatures were banished from the world. There but not there at the same time. Forever watching the mistake they made. However, whenever someone is born with a great destiny, these creatures have the ability to touch them. Upon doing so that person's soul syphons some of the creature's divine power. If this person dies before their destiny is met, and they have enough power from one of these creatures they may be reborn as a catalyst. Whoever you were following is dead. I am sorry for that. I am here however, and I think it is my job to follow the clue that was left for me." 

Scape reached into his shirt and pulled out a crumpled piece of paper, laying it on the table. 

Nu Martyr of Renovatio

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