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Dolor Aeternum

The Sinking Island Rises Again [Illyria]

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Despite his cool entrance and attire, and just oozing coolness, The soldier was still as stoic as ever.

"Ugh. STILL no reaction? How boring can you be?"

Dan flipped upside down. "Come on, Soldier 76, Why So Serious? Let's see a smile, huh?"

Dan vanished again, only to appear juuust behind him, and tug gently on the corners of his mouth.

"Like this. See?"

Then the tech boy brushed past him, just as rudely as he could manage, thinking he could give him orders. Then, he decided that he wanted to chat.
Why were Illyrians so baffling and boring?

On 11/10/2019 at 6:59 PM, ticklefarte said:

"Luz Yllende, she sent you here? How is she? How is she containing the attacker without your help?"

Dan rolled his eyes. He was head of his own regiment too, but he knew better than to be so stiff. Or maybe his Hermes blood outright prevented it... Ah whatever.

"The masked cock thistle revealed that he was named Agent 6, and that he's from some organization that contains or eliminates threats. He tried to get all the information on this island monster you had, and establish permanent communication with your king. She basically told him he could get fucked, and due to my meddling, his plans fell apart. His own fault for not factoring in an unstoppable demigod prodigy, yeah?
Anyway, then he said the poison was strictly non-lethal; its victims simply are in agonizing pain for 24 hours, then the poison disappears right before it would kill them. Then he pulled off one of the lamest escape attempts I have ever seen. Smoke bombs and sonic ringing sounds. I was gonna follow him and beat his ass, but Fuzzy Luzzy told me to come and back you up. I have no idea why. You seem to have this completely under control, and are so damn BOOORING that I'll NEVER get any reaction from you."

Some creature decided to try to latch onto his earpiece ear, and Dan was largely unimpressed, dissolved his head, and the creature just phased right through him. But, when he rematerialized, and they STILL tried it, he just dissolved his left ear.

Once they reached a place to climb, Dan simply floated up like it was nothing. Which it sorta was. Then the water came rushing in, and took one of the nerds. Dan took 2 seconds to think of a plan, and what he came up with was dubious at best, but did it anyway.
He took a deep breath, and flew into the water after the nerd, blasting himself forward at the last moment, propelling him to them. Once he grabbed the nerd in question, he fired a laser blast from his hand. This superheated the water, causing bubbles to form in massive numbers. Bubbles that Dan pulled into his hand, and used to propel the two of them out of the water.

When he landed, he put the nerd down, and gave a theatrical bow.

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"NO!" Baiden bellowed.

The waters did not take heed. His eyes widened as the Ancient One generated an internal wave that took his scientist into the depths of the lake. Gritting his teeth, he immediately began to slide down the basin slope, hands set against the rocky ground to slow his descent. The foreigner soared past him, unencumbered by things such as gravity and the physical limitations of an Illyrian body. Baiden found that he didn't care. So long as Silvio was retrieved safely. The man disappeared beneath the surface with hardly a sound.

Baiden reached the bank of the salt lake with stones embedded in his magitech hands and his boots caked with dirt. Panting, he set forward to enter the water as well when the man and Silvio surfaced with a spectacular display of bubbles and jettisoned air. He covered his eyes from the spray of water and stepped back so the two could land. By the Light...who is this man? How did Luz find him?  "Are you all right? Thank you, stranger. I still don't know your name."

A glance at the lake behind them showed that ripples from the disturbance were quickly settling. Now that he was closer, he could also smell La'Ruta even more. The artifact had to be here. There was no doubt in his... what?

The stilling water had suddenly begun to part as something began ascend to the open air. It was humanoid. No, they were humanoid. Two glowing beings emerged from the water, one much taller than the other.  

"Stand back," Baiden whispered to Silvio and the young man. 

He didn't follow his own advice. Instead, Baiden knelt in the dirt and stone and began to carve with a barely functioning pair of hands. With every line he pumped his own will into his budding creation, a weave of intention and promise. The rune responded in kind and, soon Baiden stood before a incomplete symbol. The circle was just about done, with a bit left open. He glanced up as he rose to see that two arrivals nearing the bank, and were a dozen feet away, standing fully on the surface of the water. They radiated pure magic, and pulsed in time with the creatures that clung to his arms. 

"Stay there," Baiden called. "I'd rather we do introductions at a distance."

How narcissistic it is to assume I would be able to understand Illyrian, a voice boomed in his skull. Baiden winced, but clenched his jaw. That wasn't Illyrian, but he could still understand it.  

"Clearly," he replied briskly, "I wasn't mistaken. Are you who I think you are?" Wind howled over the basin's edge, flapping his coat and threatening to undo the rune at Baiden's feet. He frowned. 

The pair had stopped at ten feet. They didn't move, but the small one reached out for the bigger one's hand. What is it that you've drawn on me? 

"This is a rune. It is a manifestation's of one's will, fully realized. It is La'Ruta, and so it cannot be denied here." He paused. "Am I to assume that you are the Ancient One?"

Your rune doesn't seem finished. 

"Well," Baiden sighed, "I'd rather not summon the creature if I can help it. If you stay where you are, I won't feel the need to. Why won't you answer me?" He placed his hands in his pockets and glanced back at the others. They could probably hear this. 

Because you don't need an answer. If what you believe to be true is true then...

He nodded. "Then this rune is likely useless. I've surmised as much. Still, it makes me feel better. My name is Baiden Oor. You are the projection of the primordial entity we refer to as the Ancient One. Either we've angered you or interested you. What I can't figure out, is why there are two of you..."

You people interested me. If it was the former, we would not be speaking. A moment of silence. Then: Why are you and your people crawling around me, Baiden Oor? 

"I'm sorry. If it helps. I do not think we were aware that you were sentient. We are looking for something." His mind was abuzz with questions, but he knew that the being would be unlikely to answer all of them, if any at all. 

I had hoped you'd say that. I've been on this world for a long time, friends. There are many somethings to be found on my body. 

"This thing would be rich with La'Ruta," Baiden added. 

Many things are. There are multiple artifacts like this within the lake behind me. Including the egg that will hatch to bring forth my offspring. 

What? Baiden blinked, then turned his gaze toward the younger apparition. Small and silent...holding its parents hand. The Ancient One could reproduce? Was Luz aware of this? He hesitated. "What are you saying, exactly?"

I'm saying that I am a generous being. You may take one item from my body. My offspring is a strong source of La'Ruta. I am willing to part with them and give them to you, as is the way of my kind. Or not. The decision is yours. You only get one, Baiden Oor. One Gift. 

Baiden lowered his head, nodding. "Naturally, any attempts to go against these terms result in a terrible demise for me and my people."

Yes. 

"I understand. Please allow us to discuss this. Thank you for your kindness, Ancient One." 

He turned, thinking as he looked to his troupe. "Thoughts, ideas, anything. Without Luz here, the final decision is mine to make, but I won't decide without your input. This isn't the time to be deferent or careful. Speak plainly. I won't bite." He knew that his reputation preceeded him, but that couldn't be allowed to interfere with this mission. 

Behind them, the lake began to part, with water being shoved to opposite sides to display a crater filled with items. At the center was an egg, large and opalescent. The obvious choice but...was it the right one? What did Luz have in mind when she'd begun to expedition? Illyrian lore had never specified that nature of the artifact in question. Perhaps because there were so many options. 

 

 

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Aboard the Illyrian Vessel

Luz was beyond incensed in her current position, knowing that she would simply be a liability should she even attempt to catch up to Baiden and the team she had sent out. The fiery glow of her eyes scanned around to those that had stayed behind, continuing the task of maintaining the vessel and ensuring that it remained attached to this monstrous beast. Moments such as this one and the one that saw the Scientific Division figure out a way to disable the swarm of beasts that had plagued Ceyana during ‘the Incident’ that saw her home brought here were capable of softening her usually stern demeanor as pride in her people slipped in.

“Help me to my quarters. I need to record everything that occurred here while the pain is still fresh.”

Her vibrant flesh looked sickly and she could barely stand then but she refused to be carried by anyone. Hooking her arms around two of the soldiers nearby, she would make her way back to her room and detail the events up until the agent made his escape.

Aboard the Ancient One

Pallis watched this Joker character move about and flaunt his abilities that he internally admitted were rather useful for this rough terrain. He could see that Luz made a wise decision to have him catch up even though his childlike antics were abrasive at best. Silvio flat out ignored the child, though he found all of his antics amusing and it took some considerable effort to keep from laughing. Alara…was just done with them all and secretly wished she had stayed with Luz, one of the few Illyrian females she actually admired. Still, when Dan explained the current status back on the vessel and tacitly spoke of Director Yllende’s resilience, varying looks of determination fell upon all of their faces as they all knew they owed it to her to be successful now.

Silvio took the brash approach, and it cost him as he had been caught completely unaware and nearly swallowed by the rushing water that pulled his body in, swirling him about with ease. If it hadn’t been for Dan’s quick thinking, he likely would have been lost even further in. The muscular man was embarrassed at having been saved by the child, especially since he fell to his knees awkwardly after Dan’s landing and unnecessary bow. Coughing up some water, he starts to recover his breathing by inhaling deeply to calm himself down but managed a “Thank you” to Dan for his assist. Silvio kept his position when he heard Baiden speak, feeling the Soldier move past him but just focusing on recovering for now.

Pallis stood a good distance behind Baiden, slightly shivering as they were all confronted by two beings comprised completely by an energy that felt familiar but started to saturate the area so much that he started to feel a pressure along his chest as he breathed it all in. He listened quietly to the dialogue between Baiden and the duo ahead of them, ultimately having nothing to say about it nor feeling confident enough to interject even after Baiden himself asked for input.

Alara, however, was an entirely different story. Even as Baiden had begun drawing the rune, she had begun whispering a string of words. Not many were as adept at enchantments and spells as she was among her colleagues and it showed given that she was able to conjure a restorative infusion that would numb most of Baiden’s pain and help Sylvio recover that much quicker. She knew she was useless in any physical fight but she would do what she could before this new anomaly had a chance to show its true nature. When Baiden asked for input, her eyes moved past him to look at the revealed items, noticing the trails of La’Ruta’s energy slowly seeping in to the egg. She knew it to be an obvious choice but the fact that it decided to limit them was demeaning in the face of all of the effort it took to get here. At the risk of sounding greedy and inviting ire, she spoke directly to the Ancient Duo.

“Your rare and generous presence along this pass urges me to ask that you allow us more than just one gift. If not for us, then at least to bolster the union of Orisia and Illyria, one a favored child of La’Ruta and the other its newest vessel.”

The data had always been clear. La’Ruta favored Orisia..or rather favored its queen as a conduit. This ancient being must know at least that. Secondly, it favored balance. A balance that has been tested through the injection of a people keen to its existence and more sensitive to how it worked than those who considered it something to worship instead of investigate. Alara believed in her gut that this was a move that Luz would attempt, partially because Illyrians did not bow to the whims of gods and also because they needed to test the boundaries of this world.

“Narcissism and greed? Interesting approach when confronted by things more ancient than you realize.”

Alara looked concerned and turned to Baiden with an apologetic expression but she felt this had to be done. Luckily, what followed at least didn’t lead to their deaths.

“The selflessness and lack of want of your neighbor are perhaps why I have never received visitors until now. Very well…one more item…just one.”

Alara let out a small sigh of relief before slowly stepping back. Sylvio finally stood up and joined Pallis in creating a circle to discuss their next move that of course did not include Dan Palmer.

“That egg seems to be devouring much of the energy around it. It is worth further study. As for the other item…”

Alara moved a bit to look at the items there, noticing a black sleek box embedded into the flesh of the creature only because it too seemed to attract energy around it, specifically into the jewel in its center.

“There is a box there that Director Yllende mentioned in her reports..”

“Wait…you read her reports? Someone is aiming for a promotion isn’t she…”

Sylvio’s first contribution to the dialogue and it was to call Alara out.

“Wait…how did I miss that? I am glad she didn’t quiz us before we left like I have heard she has done before…”

Pallas was just glad he was still alive.

“Well..yes…in her reports there was mention among local legends and historical documents about an object embedded within the Ancient One that was said to have been ‘created in the times when La’Ruta graced their existence’. The Director may consider that something worthy to bring back to our Light.”

Alara looked unfazed by Sylvio’s words or the humor of Pallis’ relief, instead turning her eyes toward the Soldier to see if he was following her logic.

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Wow. Really? STILL no reaction. Dan had just been REALLY cool, and saved one of the scientist nerds while he was at it. No applause, no gasps, not even a look of amazement. At least Soldier 76 and the one he saved had the decency to thank him. He resisted the urge to pick the other two scientists' pockets dry as punishment. It could wait until they were clear of the beast, and after he left with his reward. He could always come back later for retribution if it was required.

"Oh, well, if you insist, my name is-"

Then, he sensed it. Incredible power. Nearing that of the gods back home. He looked, and lo and behold, there was something. And another little something beside it.

He listened to the exchange, and was absolutely disgusted with the idea of separating a child from their parent. What disgusted him even more, was that the Illyrians seemed to be considering it.

Awww, how cute. They think we can't hear them.

Dan of course, could hear them as if they were right beside him. He was the master of air and wind, did they actually believe they could do ANYTHING in his vicinity and he wouldn't know about it?
He let them speak for a bit, but then he smirked and looked over his shoulder.

"You know I can hear you, right? Not that any of you rude γαμώs asked, but I am COMPLETELY against separating a kid from their parent. There's plenty of other things to take. You take the kid, you'll be giving Agent Cock-gobbler another reason to come back. Not to mention you'd be pissing me off."

He then realized he was being a bit rude himself, and turned to the beings that had appeared.

"A pleasure to meet you. My first time meeting someone so powerful that isnt an asshole. Well, besides my dad."

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