Hidden 3 mos ago Post by Fetzen
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To put things short, the overall situation wasn't looking good. By now the constant barrage of arrows and bullets from the defenders had left behind a tremendous number of dead goblins on the ground with demolished corpses being added on top of those by Manald's actions, but it was obvious to everyone that just more and more kept coming. The lycan had no idea what was happening behind him on the wall and he simply had no time to deal with any siege ladders from his position on the ground as well. Most importantly however the two trolls appeared to be next to unstoppable as even punching right into their flesh only had very temporary effect.

The werewolf thought about his options: Trying to bite his way through just anywhere and dealing as much damage as possible was bound to be not a good idea, simply because there was too much armor to crack through beforehand. Hoping that some skilled marksmen would put a few projectils into the beast's head and end its life this way sounded like a good and easy to execute plan at first, but what if the trolls would have reached and broken the gate before that happened ? And what if their skulls were too thick for anything to get through with enough impact ? Maybe the defenders could stack up some explosies behind the gate, wait for the trolls to break through and then blow them up ? If executed with enough haste this might work and maybe even the stream of goblins could be halted as they had to crawl through a crater afterwards, but again this was risky and there was no way to explain this plan to those 30 feet upwards in this mess in the first place.

Yet there was one weak spot on those trolls where rigid armor could impossibly be in place, neither on top nor underneath the skin, simply because flexibility was needed: the throat. Human ingenuity had developed a number of measures against attacks there: Chain mail, large spauldrons with additional, more vertically attached plates to defend against various weapons, shields... But had anything of this been designed with the intelligence and capabilities of a predator just jumping at oneself in mind ? Definitely not. The 'only' troublesome thing was that big, nasty axe that he'd need to avoid at all cost.

Manald reached for one of the dead goblins shot by the defenders. Unlike those killed by himself these still contained the vast majority of their bodily fluids and that was what he needed along with some means to deliver momentum over some distance. He used his claws to punch a bunch of additional holes into the body, then aimed for the axe-troll's head. He threw the goblin as hard as he could, but of course this was no real threat to this kind of foe at all. The impact merely stunned the troll briefly, but it also covered its face in a large amount of blood and thereby impaired its vision until it could use its hand to clear things up again.

Manald had not even waited for the impact to happen, but had started running right after throwing. As the troll was trying to stop things from flowing downwards from his forehead into his eyes, Manald jumped and opened his maw to welcome all the nerves and blood vessels he intended to sever. The crash caused the troll to topple over backwards, but Manald didn't let go but instead tried to dig his deeth as deep as possible into his prey. So... if one destroyed a troll's brain, would even that regrow ? And if so would it regrow including all the knowledge and experience gained over a lifetime or would it regrow as an empty book, reverting its host into the state of utter infancy ?

The lycan was not looking forward to the prospect of oversized troll babies crying for mommy on the battlefield, so he kept digging and tearing until he could feel the hard surface of a spine. In an attempt to defend against any troll axe coming in from behind, he decided to put his feet onto the trolls arms so to pin them down with his weight. Then there it was, finally, that satisfying cracking sound that hopefully would put an end to this monstrosity.

Yet at the same time Manald could feel something else... a sharp pain running through his back. He did not know what it was and could only suspect a goblin, but the reality was a little different: When one was so focused on something and filled to the brim with adrenaline, time seemed to slow down in one's perception as one's reflexes sped up. Manald had not paid much attention to how fast his attack actually happened to any outstanding observer and thus how little to no advance warning it had provided to anyone fighting for his own side as well. He had quite literally charged into the tunnel vision of one of the defenders who had indeed aimed for the troll's head with his trigger finger already moving.

And of course there was a hammer troll still on the move towards the gate...
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Hidden 3 mos ago Post by ReusableSword
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Merik Roak



Merik was quite happy with how his attack panned out, not only did the ram now create another obstacle for approaching forces but the burring wreck helped keep them back as well. The next volley made him duck back behind the battlements. Two large stones soared through the air, one causing damage to some buildings beyond the wall but the other destroyed more of their defenses.

Following along the back of this volley were more Goblins, they seemed to come in two groups. One group rushed towards the gate yet again with more explosives, the other intended on scaling the wall with grappling hooks and ropes. Ruduf was already rallying the human defenders and taking care of the goblins on the wall which meant it was up to him and the archers to stop the destruction of the gate.

Merik seized this opportunity to attempt to strike fear into every enemy beyond the walls, and possibly even a few allies. The large lizard drew his massive sword and stood on top of the battlements with his sword held high. Taking a deep breath the dragon touched let loose a deafening roar akin to what one would expect from a dragon. It was a fear tactic to both stop the enemies in front of them and to some of the stronger ones that may have still lingered in the forest, a challenge. It was a shame he couldn’t roar like that all the time.

Stepping down from the top of the wall he quickly began picking up whatever javelins or wooden poles had been left near him in an attempt to kill or slow the sappers. If he ran out or couldn’t find more there was plenty of broken stones to be used as ammunition.
Hidden 3 mos ago 3 mos ago Post by Hawthorne
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War Room

The War Room was a battlefield on its own, but instead of swords and blood, this battle was fought with pens and ink. It was from here that nobles and commanders would decide where to move and strike. Lord Balthazar and Duke Karstilli were hard at work, sifting through reports, managing resources, and sending orders down the line to the commanders and lieutenants that would issue them to their men. Scribes and pages quickly transcribed their words into writing, while Balthazar's Record-Hunters found new employment in making everyone's lives easier; they would help seek out records, pass paper and ink, write things down, or even move pieces around the strategic map.

"New reports have come in, m'lord." A soldier bows to Duke Karstilli and to Balthazar. The man quickly passes off his papers, before returning to his duties. The two noblemen at the table took the time to review the reports-- updated information was crucial in any battle, after all.

Balthazar shook his head as he read through the accounts from the various battlefronts. With the presence of the more dangerous Orcs, the North Gate was under heavy attack-- though he was confident that the presence of Naysein would quickly turn the tide there. Meanwhile, it seemed that the West Gate was holding fine, all things considered. Their battering ram was destroyed, and it would no doubt force the Goblins on that side to take a new approach. The East Gate was in a bit of trouble, though. With the presence of both ladders and trolls, they would have to mount a desperate defense. He has not yet received any information about the Sewers, but...

"Lord Balthazar, someone wishes to speak to you-- he bears the seal of the Royal Guard!"

The Spymaster paused for only a moment. Did someone of the Royal Guard fall in battle already?

"Let him through."

The guardsman allowed a young man-- no, a boy in the garb of a conscript to enter. The boy in front of him was a pale, spindly one. He looked as if he could not even muster the strength to lift his pike. For a moment, it seemed as if he was happy to be away from the battle, but now that he's face-to-face with noblemen, his fearful demeanor had returned. The boy bowed deeply, faltering in the presence of his betters, before stammering out half-hearted greetings. This prompted Balthazar to initiate.

"Who are you, and what message do you bring?"

"Ah, uhm, my name is Malfoy, m'lord. I bring a message from Sir Acrius."

Figures. To trust someone like this with the Seal of the Royal Guard? You'd either need to be very trusting, or very careless.

"Go on."

"...we were fighting the Goblins in the Sewers when a priestess and two warriors showed up to help us. They came from the other side, and--"

"Out with it. We don't have all day."

"Oh, uh, Drana Turash of the 'Sacred order'-- that was her name. Sir Acrius wanted to ask you for information about her."

"The Sacred Order..? She is a long way from her temple." Balthazar mused. "...And Turash. That's a noble house of some controversy..." The man thinks to himself, before snapping his fingers. In an instant, one of the Record-Hunters brings forth a sheet of parchment, while another hauls a quill and inkwell to its master.

"I must gather more information first. For now, tell Acrius that he must focus on the battle at hand... and keep an on the Turash girl. She may be a worthwhile asset, but we cannot be certain of her intentions yet." Balthazar takes the quill in his hand, before dismissing the boy with a nod. Malfoy quickly nods back, before then running off.

From there, the orders from the War Room come shortly after. The injured and wounded would be moved into field clinics, with fresh bodies to replace their losses. The East Gate would be reinforced by the reserves-- of which, there are not many, but it is all they can spare. Lastly, Balthazar would then pass off a message to Miss Mary, who would then subsequently pass that on to one of his informants, who would look into this mysterious cleric.

But while Balthazar and Karstilli work, the other members of the Royal Guard had their own problems to worry about.

Co-GM IC:

North Gate

Between Leonidas, Naysein, and the soldiers atop the wall, many Orcs never make it to the battlements. Thanks to Zatana and the crew manning the cannons, the enemy archers were quickly silenced, their tough hide no match for Dwarven artillery. Their combined efforts meant a minimum loss of life for the defenders and with reinforcements moving to replace the wounded, things are looking up for those stationed at the North Gate.

Unfortunately, a few grappling hooks remain, and as one soldier moves to dislodge it, an Orc hand takes hold of the hapless man's chainmail. The soldier screams as he's thrown from the battlements, a heavy thud announcing his death-- and the arrival of Orcs, several Orcs make it atop the wall. One of them has skin the color of ash, wears medium bone armor, and wields a wicked-looking sword and a heavy iron shield in his hands. Another one is tall, even among his kind, wears heavy plate armor, and holds a massive warhammer in his hands. These two in particular seem to be a cut above the rest, even among vicious Orcs.

Several soldiers move to try and kill the invaders and dislodge the grappling hooks, but they are quickly killed by the two Orcs at the front. Behind them, several more Orcs appear as reinforcements-- it seems they defer to the leadership of these Orc Lieutenants. The one with the blade speaks, in heavily-accented Common.

"Hear me, Manswine! I am Bhakk Ashenskin, and any man who throws down their blade will be granted a swift death!" He grins wildly, blocking an arrow aimed at him with his shield.

"And my name is Ghukk Bonecrusher-- any who wish to test their mettle against my hammer will learn why I am called Bonecrusher!" A bullet ricochets off of his heavy plate armor, the Orc in question undeterred by the bite of a gnat.

The pair let out a rallying cry, which prompts the Orcs behind them to deliver a warcry of their own. This emboldens the attackers and demoralizes the defenders. Those atop the wall must defeat these lieutenants, the warriors accompanying them, and dislodge the grappling hooks before they are overwhelmed!

West Gate

Merik's thunderous roar sent most of the fodder running for the hills. The sappers quickly abandon their task of clearing the rubble and blasting through the gate aside, their reason replaced with a primal fear of dragons and their ilk. The Goblins who were climbing the walls, on the other hand, had no choice but to push forward in spite of it, and they were quickly cut down by the work of Rudolph and his men. Wounded soldiers were quickly replaced for fresh ones, and for a minute, it almost seems like they've managed to successfully repel this attack force.

That is, however, until a group of Goblins makes it atop the walls. These ones move with a speed unexpected of normal Goblins-- it seems these are trained warriors, either unaffected or drawn to the battlements by Merik's draconic roar. These enemies seem to wield proper weapons and wear scraps of metal armor, likely scavenged from dead and fallen warriors. In the center of these armored Goblins, is one that walks with a swagger and confidence. Unlike the others, he holds an ornate shortsword in his hands and wears bone armor, with trinkets and baubles in plain sight.

"I am the Goblin Warchief, Adgak the Heel-Slicer! We spent all week working on that ram, and we're here for revenge!"

The Goblins let out warcries as they fan out, quickly attacking and killing any stragglers, before switching to a shield wall, their tall shields allowing them to hide behind and deflect any normal projectiles in their way. If the defenders can defeat these Goblins and their Warchief, this battle can be won!

East Gate

As Faira and her men push towards the ladders, reinforcements from the Keep had arrived to provide their assistance. These were conscripts and levies-- not true soldiers, but perhaps their numbers would help make a difference. The Goblins begin to push but are caught in a pincer between Faira and the soldiers, and the new arrivals who were sent to assist. This would hold them for now, but this stalemate had to be broken soon, or the pendulum would swing in the favor of one side or the other.

Meanwhile, Manald wreaks havoc in the fields below. His display of brutality had managed to take one of the Trolls out of commission and had sent the surrounding Goblins into a panicking retreat. He was uncertain if this was enough to kill the Troll in its entirety, but he was certain that for now, it would not be able to do anything about it. The Hammer Troll let out a furious roar and began smashing the gate apart with its hammer. Thankfully, the city gates are quite resilient, and this one had not sustained any damage up to this point, so the East Gate would hold... for now.

The defenders had to kill the Goblins atop the walls, destroy the ladders the stop further reinforcements, and find a permanent end for the Trolls, or this battle would go on for as long as it had to.

Sewers

Acrius and his men had managed to hold against both Goblins and their beasts, the ferocity of these animals failing to triumph over the strategies of war that humanity had cultivated over centuries of conflict. Soon, another wave would arrive to attack, but the ambush from Drana would cause these Goblins to fall just as quickly as the last group. A group of soldiers (and Malfoy) from the surface would come to replace the wounded and fatigued, but thanks to the healing spell, there was no need for a rotation. Instead, these men joined their ranks, in anticipation of a larger attack wave soon.

The runner sent by Acrius, Malfoy, would quickly move towards his commanding officer and relay what Balthazar had told him. It was, admittedly, not very useful information, if at all, but there was at least a reassurance that the spymaster would look into this matter further. There was a small lull in the activity, giving Acrius and Drana some time to discuss this further, but soon, another attack comes.

From behind the corner, it is not easy to be ambushed-- all the defenders have to do is simply wait for another wave. This time, however, is different-- there's a bit of commotion, but they stop before they can be seen. Cowardice, perhaps? Their answer comes in the form of a pair of wooden balls that roll across the floor, prompting those at the front to wonder what exactly they are.

They realize the presence of the fuses too late.

Bright flashes and thunderous noises erupt from the devices-- and those who weren't able to look away or cover their ears to be blinded and deafened respectively, for a short time. From here the next wave arrives; Goblins, Wolves, and a team of sappers that look more experienced than their kin. Most Goblin explosives cannot match up to those of Dwarves, but if anything, Goblins are crafty beings, capable of innovation never seen before.

Perhaps if they can manage to do so, they can... appropriate these explosives and use it to seal the tunnels the Goblins used to get in-- that would certainly end attacks from the Sewers... but first, the defenders must defeat this wave of Goblins, Wolves, and explosive-wielding Sappers. Avoiding explosives in the middle of a dark, damp sewer will be difficult, but it seemed, at least, that the Sappers weren't willing to blow up their own forces. Of course, that would not stop them from trying to disrupt the ranks of the defenders. This was certain to be an... interesting battle.
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Hidden 3 mos ago Post by Forett
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Drana would not respond as she had managed to properly engage with a few of the riders. Being far too close to use a proper fire spell, she would use her staff to form three small bolts of flame and shout more words of power “Neri di ixen!” causing them to launch forward to peg the goblins from the backs of their mounts. The Fire would pierce them center body mass before igniting any possessions or loose fitting armor they had. It was quite a sight to see in the dim light. The spirit wolf would move through goblin and wolf alike until it pounced upon an unmounted goblin that had been hiding in the darkness. The goblin would try to strike the spectral wolf, but his blade would pass through harmlessly while the teeth of this ghost were very capable of tearing into the goblin’s throat. After the goblin was slain, the spirit would simply fade away.

The two warriors moved in tandem as Drana moved her staff and began casting several cantrips to strengthen the position they had. “You don’t have to trust me to fight with me against these curs!” She would block a sword with her staff, having let down her guard for one moment too long to respond. She would resume her casting as one of these knights executed the goblin with speed and precision. It helped that the goblins were coming to them, as the armor often had trouble moving quickly. “Kontzu'krele!” Three balls of light would spring into existence and move around the room to anchor themselves near the entrance she had arrived from, above herself, and above the defense the humans had taken. Each ball was dim, but provided clear light. Drana’s true purpose for this was to prevent the men from seeing the magic that was at work within the armor of her knights. The distance would have helped plenty, but that distance was closing very quickly. With the knights cutting down her attackers and the assistance of the men across the room, Drana was able to close the gap to reach their lines where she would finally be able to speak. Respecting the lack of trust, she would not get too close and would keep her knights between herself and the men. She had not noticed that more had arrived in their fight! “I am Drana Turash, Cleric of the Sacred Order, and I come to assist you!” she would shout. She had managed to conserve most of her magical energies this far, and she would sooner turn around and go back into the tunnels with the goblins than have to use it on humans defending themselves from goblin hordes. “I can explain myself, but I am unsure that the enemy will wait for pleasantries. These are my two knights, they are known as Sir Gordon and Sir Stephan. They are Paladins of the Sacred order!” She looked worried, and she was. The last thing she wanted to do was waste her magic having to flee back into hostile tunnels. The only relief she had was in the fact the assault seemed to have stopped for now.
"Is anyone wounded?!"

Hidden 3 mos ago 3 mos ago Post by Borosev
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Rudolph successfully cut another rope from one of the hooks before he turned to see how everyone else was faring. A few of the goblins did manage to get atop the walls, but were swiftly cut down without issue.
Suddenly, a loud roar came from behind him, and startled as he was at that moment, he saw Merik stood atop the battlements producing the surprising bellow. He turned to see some of the goblins fleeing in terror down in the no-mans-land, Not Bad he thought to himself nodding in approval of its affect.

There was a brief pause in the aftermath of Merik's display, and just in time for fresh reinforcements to arrive on the scene. Rudolph helped to guide the wounded, and direct the newcomers to positions that needed attention. The sergeant that commanded his end of the wall, was also escorted away with the wounded, leaving Rudolph and Merik in full command of their post.

A few minutes would pass, and the greenskins would come again with renewed vigor. A few of them were brought down by arrow and shot, but most failed to land, or were deflected. Rudolph wondered if it was just that the soldiers he received were just inexperienced, but he soon noticed that these goblins seemed better equipped, which concerned him.
"Choose your shots carefully lads. These ones don't seem as soft as the rest." he warned.

The output of missiles from the defenders did slow down, but this time they were making more of a dent. However it would not be enough, as a large group hastily made its way to a point in the wall which still had a few hooks applied, and as though with the speed of a hungry beast, the goblins made it atop the walls far faster than their previous kin. Some soldiers tried to intercept, but they were overwhelmed almost immediately. These greenskins were much better equipped and trained compared to the usual fodder they were mostly up against, and theybquickly set up a strong position. Rudolph saw one particular goblin in much more "ornate" armour amongst their group with a somewhat boastful manner speak up, "I am the Goblin Warchief, Adgak the Heel-Slicer! We spent all week working on that ram, and we're here for revenge!" said the creature, its followers gave out a warcry afterwards.
The warcry did its job in creating some fear amongst the soldiers on the wall, but it merely pissed Rudolph off. He ordered the troops behind him to keep up the pressure on their end, and ordered others to form up with him. Despite their obvious concern, they immediatley formed up with their sergeant.
Rudolph made himself known to the goblins as he stood amongst his comrades in an equally boastful posture, and spoke loud enough for all to hear as troops rallied around him, "Are you lot threatened by this walking piece of fertilizer?!" he asked the men around him before calmly drawing his short-sword and shield and then pointed the blade at the Warchief, "I'm going to toss you off this wall, so you can join the rest of the shit-stains!" he said to the goblin as he pointed the blade over the wall. He then ordered his unit to set up their own shield wall in preparation for the fight.

----------

Manuel Karstilli was exhausted, he had not slept properly for the past couple of days, and he may not in the next either. The reports had been nothing but troubling and negative for the most part at late. After going over another report about the overall condition of the city's defences, and its ever increasing casualty rate, he placed the sheet down and took off his crown, its weight bothering him.
He overheard the news that the messenger had brought to Balthazar. Another eccentric of the empire I presume he thought to himself shaking his head and wiping his brow. After the visit had concluded, the Duke spoke up "There seems to be more of these unexpected visitors as of late." he said as he rested back on his chair.
The Duke thought for a moment, before he spoke again, "Have we received any news of Sir Siegfried and his cavalry by any chance?" he asked.
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Leonidas' heart might of skipped a beat when he saw Naysein up on the walls. "...What is Nan doing here? whatever we could use the help." he thought to himself as he worked to keep Orcs off the walls but he couldn't cover every hook, and once one orc made it to the walls it seemed like they streamed to that spot knowing they had a foothold. Before long a small section of the wall had fallen, the orcs who had made it up seemed to be lead by a pair of them, an ash skinned orc and a hammer wielding brute. Seeing this group he quickly accessed the situation. "Zatana, Na... Naysien I am going to need your help with these orcs on the walls. I'll deal with the one that seems like its in charge you two take care of the brute with the hammer." He said back to them before turning his attention to the Orcs again.

"Bhakk! Know that you face Prince Leonidas Lionheart of the Grand Empire. Your pitiful attack on our walls shall stop here and you will soon go to meet your maker! Men do not fear these beasts! Cut down those who made it to the walls!" He yells out raising his hammer and pointing it at Bhakk. As he starts to close in on the orc one of his hands falls to the amulet of the silver flame on his neck. "Ohh Silver Flame I ask for your divine protection in the battle to come." He mutters to himself as his armor starts to faintly glow with a gold aura. Bhakk smiles as he heard Leonidas's challenge. "Hear that brother I get to kill a prince today!" he snickers in Orcish "I'll gut this one and leave the others to you." the ashen orc adds before charging at Leonidas. As the two clashed Bhakk was the first to make his move coming in with a series of slashes with his sword. The first Was blocked by Leonidas' Maul and after a moment of being pushed back he would come to strike again. His attack would slip past Leonidas' guard only to bounce off the golden aura emanating off of Leonidas. "My faith protects me" Leonidas said with a grin as he swung his mighty hammer striking the Orc in the side in its moment of shock. Bhakk fell back a few paces gripping his side only for a brief second before charging forward again. This time Bhakk stabbed trying to play a bit more defensively. And although Leonidas was able to avoid the first stab the second was able to catch his right forearm The orc grinning as it pulled back its blood soaked blade. Again Leonidas Came forward with a mighty blow in the form of an upward strike and although Bhakk's shield was able to absorb much of the blow the force of the strike sent him flying back and he landed hard on his back. Again Bhakk would charge to attack the Prince and again his blows would glance off the armor and the golden aura protecting the prince, but the Prince's blow would fall on the shield Bhakk and do no real damage. After this exchange Leonidas would not wait for the Orc and quickly followed up his strike with another. Again it would fall on the shield but this time there was a splintering sound as Bhakk's shield shattered under the strength of Leonidas' blows. But in this moment Bhakk saw an opening one he couldn't afford to let slip by The orc slashed up at the prince's arm a clean cut into the prince's left Shoulder left blood flying into the air. But Before Bhakk could even rejoice in his blow the orc realized the situation he was in. Leonidas would see the fear well up in the Orc's eyes as Leonidas' hammer started to glow red hot as the Prince slammed it down atop the Orc's head. The splat of hammer meeting flesh rang out atop the wall as the Ashen orc now sit limp without a head at Leonidas' feet. "Your Champion lies dead, All who come atop these walls will join him in the Afterlife!" Leonidas yelled out trying to intimidate the orcs. After his kill Leonidas would fall back only for a moment as he used his Magic to heal the wounds. Although he didn't fully heal himself he made it so he could continue fighting without a chance of worsening the wounds. Keeping the last bit of his magic for an emergency.
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Acrius' eyes narrowed as he observed the trio. The cleric held herself well in combat, which was odd as he thought them fragile backliners. Drana’s two companions, Sir Gordon and Sir Stephan, were even more suspect. They moved well, almost as if they were in-synch with the cleric. Their movement looked off to him, but he couldn’t quite place what.

"Yes, I’ve already gleaned your name from that freaky telepathy," Acrius said in a manner-of-fact way, "It’s hard to trust a figure coming from the enemy’s side, but you don’t look like goblins. Your companions...” The orange-eyed boy stopped himself; instead he tried to aid the cleric as much as he could.





Soon the wave would trickle to a stop. The soldiers seemed to be in better shape than before, likely due to the ministrations of Drana. Acrius sat on a pile of goblin bodies away from the group; he caught his breath as he observed the cleric and her entourage offer their help to the soldiers. The soldiers held looks of mistrust but chose to bite their tongues and keep their thoughts to themselves. It was mostly due to the intervention of the competent officer, who likely gleaned Acrius’ intentions when he sent Malfoy back to the keep, and how shorthanded Bergkoff really was- any help was welcome as long as their swords were pointed at the enemy.

Petyr’s large frame blocked his view. "Ah Petyr," Acrius said nonchalantly, "Mind shifting elseways?"

“That… woman, Cleric,” Petyr began as he side-eyed the trio, “... is she on our side?”

"How in the hells am I supposed to know?" Acrius shot back, "You don’t have the time nor skill to worry about others, I mean look at yourself, a slight gust of wind could knock you over..." Petyr stared back at him with a serious look, and Acrius sighed in return, "That’s for me and your officer to ascertain, just follow your orders."

Drana moved to stabilize two men who had suffered goring wounds from the rickety pole arms the goblins had been using. With a wave of her staff, she would whisper something and the wounds would heal to the point of minor scarring. The knights would keep watch of the men, emotionless steel their only expression. In truth, it was not far from the skull’s expression that rested beneath said steel.

“I cannot heal them completely, I will need to save my magics in case we become embattled again.” Drana said to herself. She would look to one of the nearby men, giving them instruction to move them further from the tunnel. They would not be able to fight until they properly recovered.

She would notice the looks cast upon her, and would do her best to ignore them. Looking around, Drana would find Acrius once more and begin to approach him. The knights would move with her. “You there, are you the leader of this troupe?” she would communicate telepathically once more, not wishing to get any closer for fear of overhearing a conversation she may want no part in. Regardless, she had claimed to make her intentions known and a lull in the fighting was providing a good opportunity.

Acrius rested his chin on his hand. Petyr began walking back to the group of soldiers, eyeing Drana the whole way. "Eh, not quite," The orange-eyed boy replied atop his goblin throne, "The leader’s that one, over there." He pointed towards the officer, who was now conversing with Petyr.

He wasn’t certain if he should reveal that he was apart of the Royal Guard. ”If you want to discuss brass tacks, discuss it with him," His steely gaze was shadowy under the darkness of the sewers, "... or, do you need anything from me, Cleric Drana?"

Drana would smile as she realised she had spoken in their heads and not aloud. “Apologies. No, I am curious as to where I am. I am not normally one that participates in battles like these.” She would look over the dead goblins. “Before that man arrived you seemed to be the only thing keeping these men held together.” She would speak after getting closer. “Though I am here to make sure you are not injured.” She would add in quickly, as though she had meant to speak much sooner. “You are the one that defended them, so for now I will speak with you.” She would take a deep breath, frustrated by her situation.

The knights would maintain distance as she moved forward, staying a good five feet further away from Acrius than Drana. Drana had communicated with both of them to make sure they did not attack the man she was trying to speak with. Their armor was black, but not intentionally. It was normal steel, covered in black bile that flowed through a goblin’s veins. Their weapons and shields were coated in the stuff. Wolf’s blood lay atop the older layers, giving sign that they had been fighting well before they had entered this room.

”... Hm, no need for worry- I’m not injured," Acrius paused to consider his next words, revealing that information wouldn’t hurt, right? ”Well, you’re in the presence of the ever-illustrious Bergkoff military." Acrius raised his hands up like a showman, gesturing towards the huddled group of soldiers, ”... though I’m not exactly part of the Bergkoff military."

The orange-eyed boy would scratch his neck and sighed deeply, where the hell was Malfoy. ”You couldn’t have come at a better time," Acrius said dryly, ”The city’s under siege right now, being attacked from all sides except South."

”I’m simply doing the task assigned to me." Acrius replied to her comment of rallying the men, ”But enough about me, what about you Cleric Drana, Sir Gordon and… Sir Stephan, was it?"

Acrius had noticed that the two paladins’ weapons and armour were grimey and well-worn. The amount of gore and bile on them didn't make sense unless they’ve been fighting well before they link up with the Bergkoff group. Their skills were nothing to scoff at either, even forgoing Drana’s skill, the two seemed to be stronger than they let on. Now that he thinks about it, it was odd that the two men didn’t at all look tired nor out of breath... ”What could Clerics and Paladins be doing in the sewers of Bergkoff?"

The paladins would nod at the mention of their respective names. Drana would see that their lack of speaking would be a problem, and chimed in quickly. “They are less trusting than I, I’m afraid. Most of the knights in my company rarely speak. It helps that I can communicate without speaking.” Drana was surprised to hear where she was. “Ber- where? How far are we from the black desert? That is where I was when I-...” she would stop. She had used a teleportation scroll, and the return scroll had been lost when Stephan lost his bag fighting off the goblins. “I am very, very far from home.” She would pause before realizing she had not given him a proper answer. “I was helping an angry spirit find eternal rest, and it seems I am without my returning spell scroll. I am lucky there was even a way out…” and that the crypt sealed itself. “What about you? If you aren’t with these men why are you here in the sewers killing goblins for-with. With them.” She leaned to look over several of the corpses.
If the city was under attack she had to help, but how could she without turning a few goblins into turncoats? If they weren’t in the Black desert then the undead would probably terrify everyone here.

”I see..." Acrius had more questions but it’s best left to someone like Balthazar, not him. Black desert…? I vaguely recall it from a geography class, but it was definitely far.... He thought and surmised that Drana seemed to be far from home,. ”I’m not all too familiar with the geography..." Acrius shouted at Petyr to bring over a map. Petyr would lumber over and bring a crudely drawn map so that Drana could see where Bergkoff was.

The orange-eyed boy shot her a confused look at her talk about helping spirits eternal rest; he concluded that it was something clerics from her order did and left it at that.

”Oh, little ol’ me?" Acrius replied to her enquiry, ”Well, I-"

One of the goblins under him twitched- either it was barely alive or it was its last death throes. Acrius unsheathed his dagger and flipped it in his hands before stabbing downwards- into the goblins neck, permanently silencing the creature.

”... just a conscript for the Empire." Acrius said simply, it wasn’t a total lie. As soon as he said this, Malfoy and a regiment of soldiers finally arrived. The spindly boy would report to his commanding officer before panting to a rest. It seemed that the boy had followed his duty, at least.

Acrius and him would lock eyes; the orange-eyed boy gestured for him to come. Malfoy would lean in close to his ear and relayed what little Balthazar could offer. Graaaamps, is that really all? Acrius would receive his emblem back and slapped the boys back in a gesture of a job well done. Drana would also notice the Royal Guard emblem that was given back to him, if she could recognize it then she would know Acrius was a part of the Prince’s Royal Retinue.

Drana’s eyes would glow at the surprise Acrius gave her upon stabbing the goblin beneath him. The knights would remain unmoved, however they did move their weapons slightly. They were ready to move at any time, and would protect Drana even if she did not wish for them to. She would study the map and frown. If this was true she had succeeded, but she was now nearly the world away!

After the exchange between the two men, Drana would look up just in time to spot the seal, putting together that this man was more than just a conscript. She did not know why he was not being forthcoming, but he did not need to be. So long as he was fighting for the right reasons he could be a commoner for all she cared. It was Gordon who would bring up the relevance of that sigil, telling Drana of its importance without the use of words.

After Malfoy was congratulated, Drana would speak up. “You don’t strike me as a conscript.” She spoke without any formality, as most clerics often do near a battlefield. “You have experience with death, and do not shirk from it’s gaze.” She seemed to be speaking to herself, but all the same she was looking at Acrius and had not said any names. “Forgive me, I should not say such things. I have found where I am from and can set off to be homeward as soon as the city is no longer under siege. Can I trust you to guide me to that end Sir...?” She was terrible with names, and in the middle of her own speech she had forgotten if she had ever asked it. This would cause her to grip her staff tightly, a hint of embarrassment flushing onto her face as she looked to the side. “I seem to have forgotten if you gave a name…”

”Conscript is my technical rank," Acrius flashed a grin, ”... death’s an acquaintance that’s always close by..."

Acrius assumed that Balthazar has given him free reign and discretion to deal with Drana. ”Forget the ‘Sir’, I’m just a commoner." He corrected her as he knew more than a few certain knights who hated when others were called ‘Sir’ without the proper rank, ”I didn't. It's Acrius Stroude. Hmm… alright. For now you’re part of my responsibility." He got up and extended his dirtied and bloodied hand for her to shake.

As the two shook hands his eyes noticed wooden balls roll on the floor, Shit- Acrius thought, pulling Drana towards and then behind him, using his body to block the would-be explosion. The orange-eyed boy didn’t know if it was an explosion but he figured he could take an explosion better than the Cleric. Luckily it wasn’t; he managed to cover his eyes by bracing his arms- his ears, however, rang loudly.

The soldiers who were loosely in formation were now in utter disarray. The officer began shouting but his voice felt tiny due to the ringing. Straining his eyes, he peered into the tunnel- now sappers now joined the contingency of wolves and goblins.

”Drana… shit, we have to buy time for the soldiers to get back in formation." Acrius instructed as he unsheathed his weapon.

She would shake his hand with a firm grip, her own hand blackened by grime from the tunnels she had been navigating. “Right, I can do that. I-“ she would be pulled closer, surprised but not unprepared. She would move her staff to the side and would be spared from the blinding effect of the flashbombs thanks to Acrius. With ringing ears, she would hardly understand Acrius, and would respond as she pulled away. The two knights would move to the side of the two, aware of the situation as the stunning effects of the flashbombs did not affect the undead.
Seeing a new wave of attackers soon to jump and possibly decimate the now stunned soldiers.

Raising her staff as Acrius unsheathed his sword, she would cast a fire spell. “Ixen kepesk!” She shouted as a wall of fire ten feet long and three feet wide would appear in front of the side of the goblin formation. She debated raising many of the goblins, but she did not want to cause even more confusion. Still, there was a limit to what she could do outside of her domain. Her two knights would support Acrius, moving to charge with him.

”Cover me." Acrius said to the paladins; he noticed the goblins was as surprised as the soldiers when the wall of flame came up. The orange-eyed boy crouched low and dashed at full speed to catch the reeling goblins off-guard. He was impressed that both of the paladins could somewhat keep pace with them only slightly lagging behind him. Using his momentum, he sliced through two goblins. A sapper screeched at him from the side and charged at him. Sir Stephan shield-charged the sapper away from the trio and into a small cluster of goblins before exploding.

”Not bad, Stephan." Acrius mumbled after a momentary glance behind him. The two ‘paladins’ were dependable vanguard, allowing Acrius to let loose without worrying about his surroundings. With his hesitation erased he once more slipped into a battle-like trance; each step and movement was used close distance or deftly dodge a goblin's killing stroke, each stroke of his blade claimed a goblin’s life.

A goblin ran at him, its body language telegraphing a vertical strike aimed at his chest. Acrius, using as little movement as possible, twisted his body sideways causing the blow to slice empty air. He would follow-up with a counterattack; a quick slice aimed at its weapon hand. As soon as the goblin missed, it tried another, much quicker diagonal strike. However no strike would follow; the goblin seemed surprised to find its hand on the floor as it slumped onto the floor.

Unfortunately for him, Goblins by themselves were nothing much in terms of individual skill. Their methods were too rough and obvious- wide, telegraphed strikes seemed to be their forte. They mostly relied on their numbers rather than anything else. Each goblin that tried to perform a flank attack were easily pushed away or killed by the two paladins by his side. It was too easy. Even the wolves who tried their best to support their goblin masters couldn’t do anything, partially due to the paladins and partially due to the wall of fire.

The wall of flames would last for only a minute before it dimmed, and with it one of the small lights that hovered in the room would also fade. The wall of fire had been enough to prevent the charge, but several wolf riders had managed to make it past and took advantage of the disorganized men. Luckily, lack of support from the goblins minimized casualties. Drana would use the distraction to prepare herself for another spell, Casting a stored spell from her staff. Targeting the three warriors nearest and herself, they would each find themselves glowing dimly in the darkness. Acrius would feel several arrows bounce off as the mage armor held fast, offering him protection to execute the goblins. Drana would say a silent prayer that she had gotten it off in time, but her attention left her open to being flanked herself. A single sapper would lob another wooden globe, though this one was a little bit larger. Seeing this globe whirling towards her with a bright fuse, she would turn her staff. There was no time for a spell, even a stored one would not be fast enough, and so she used an unorthodox method. Her off hand met her staff as she swung lightly, bunting the large ball back towards the goblin who had thrown it while uttering a quiet curse. The goblin would be surprised as the wooden globe’s fuse vanished at the same time it landed near his feet. The ensuing explosion would actually knock Drana backwards and off her feet, the dim glow vanishing. A part of the wall and ceiling would collapse, the small explosion had ignited and reacted with the other improvised devices the sapper had been carrying. Using her staff, she would quickly get back to her feet. Her mage armor had spared her from most of the damage, though she was now looking worse for wear.

Gordon and Stephan worked to block as much of the ranged attacks they could. Shields and plate made them nearly invulnerable to forward ranged attacks, but the explosives would prove to be a problem should any of the goblins get them off. Goblin bows were not known for their craftsmanship. That said, the wolf riders were in greater numbers than one would have assumed for an under-city raid.

Drana, finishing her coughing fit, would wipe the dust from her eyes with her off hand. Looking ahead of here she saw that the path had been narrowed, and an idea came to her mind. If they used the sappers bombs they could re-seal the tunnel and buy some much needed rest for all of the people here.

Drana’s voice would touch Acrius’ mind again; “Acrius, we need to re-seal the tunnels before we are overrun! Do you think you could try to steal some of the grey globes from the sappers? They seem to be some kind of blasting charge. You can speak in your own head to respond to this!” She always forgot that most people did not know how to reply, and quietly cursed herself for not having said anything when she first communicated with him.

Got it, Acrius tried her method of communication. One of the riders charged at him at full speed. He hoisted his weapon up, forming a makeshift-spear. The rider would skewer itself into his blade. The wolf itself, unperturbed by its rider's death, lunged at the boy. The boy would drop his weapon but catch the wolf’s neck with his hands.

”Get off, damnit." Acrius said as he engulfed his hands in flames. He may or may not have forgotten he had some rudimentary control of fire. The wolf’s fur and neck would be singed before falling dead onto the floor.

His eyes looked around the battlefield for a goblin sapper. He would find one and he made a beeline towards it. The sapper would try and ignite a wooden globe but found his hand impaled onto the wall by a dagger thrown by the boy.. Acrius’ continued his charge and aimed a killing stroke at the goblins’ neck. It hung limply against the wall, his hands nailed onto the wall.

Acrius cut the bag free from its dead owner. ... does this work, hello? He thought, unsure if he could initiate telepathic communication, Ahem, I got the explosions..

Drana would giggle over the communication and out loud, despite her current condition. “That won't be enough, we will probably need more. But we don’t hav- wait… there is something coming.” Drana would cast another cant rip of flashing lights, repeating the phrase she spoke before. “Acrius, there are two wolves without riders that are covered in those grey globes! They are behind the goblins.” Drana was confused as to why they weren’t advancing until she realized this was probably an attempt to blow up an important target somewhere in the city. “There are two wolves that are covered in those things! If you can set one of them off, we may be able to close the tunnel.” Of course, the entire fighting force of goblins was between them. Drana would curse under her breath again. Moving quickly towards her two knights as they chased after Acrius. She only hoped that the men they were fighting to buy time for were formed up and ready. If they were still dealing with those riders, the group she was with wouldn’t have support. “I will try to keep you up! Just don’t take any blows you can avoid!”

”The tactics these gobs are employing..." Acrius didn’t finish his train of thought, ”Alright, let’s try it."

Acrius peered into the bag and found a dozen of the make-shift explosives. The boy grinned. A single flame would be lit on his finger as he ignited one of the bombs. He would then lob it over to another cluster of goblins. With each lobbed explosive the boy cackled maniacally. It seemed that being a demolitionist was somewhat fun for him. With this method he cleared the horde of goblins standing infront of him and the group.

Acrius’ stolen bag now only had three explosives but they were close to the two wolves on standby. A flame would engulf the bag as he threw it at one of the wolves, he wasn’t sure if this was going to work but he was curious to see what the goblins and wolves would do.

Drana would stop, seeing that Acrius was plenty capable of abusing the small spheres. He was getting way to close, and as he lit the bag she would raise her staff and say a silent prayer. Using the energy in the two arcane crystals, she would ready a spell that she had only used once before and was hoping to save for just such a situation. With that prepared, she would focus on Acrius. The knights could be remade, and he could not. This spell would only work on one target due to her lack of practice and its proficiency outside the death domain.

The wolves would be aggressive, and upon the goblins being destroyed would be free to move on their own. Charging Acrius, they would cover ground as he hefted the flaming bag through the air. The bag would begin to spark, and Drana would follow up on her hunch. “Usjalil di marfedelom, tailuen nomeno mablik de dout erlelee!” A white sphere would suddenly appear around Acrius, preventing him from passing through it. The entire room would erupt with a deafening sound, though for Acrius he would hear a muffled pop. The spell, sphere of invulnerability, had been casted. At this point, Drana would fall to a knee from the combined use of magic and the force of the blast. Her knights would be no more as they held up their shields and fire kissed them. The floor and walls would shake as both of the wolves were caught in the blast, and smoke filled the room. Rubble would lean on the bubble Acrius was caught in, and shortly after that rubble was settled the orb would vanish. Dust would swirl over Acrius and the voice that had been in his head would be silent.

Blood ran out of Drana’s nose as she had casted one of the upper tier spells from the staff with aid from the skulled lady. She had been surprised the spell had worked, as the last time it had failed her. She had seen the blast parting around the globe, and had a grin on her face despite the pain she was in. The fight in the room had paused from the explosion, but as the dust settled the verdict would become clear.
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Hidden 3 mos ago Post by Gisk
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Faira directed the soldiers to fight the goblins, and put the new, less trained conscripts to work splintering the remaining ladders with axes. When only one ladder remained, she commanded a halt to their world and approached. A swift thrust dispatched the lead goblin climber, sending it tumbling down to knock its fellows off the ladder. She stepped onto the siege weapon herself and kicked off the wall with the force of an angry mule, sending it tipping backward to the ground. Grabbing a goblin about the neck to catch her fall, Faira stood among the stunned enemies and set about hacking her way towards Manald and the trolls.

One was down, but clearly lived, and Manald was making his bestial way towards the remaining creature. Faira stopped at the downed troll, and reactivated the spell on her dagger. She plunged it into the trolls throat with a sizzle of burningbmeat and blood, and wrenched it across the neck to sever the head. That should do it, she thought. Before the surrounding goblins could recover and swarm her, she hurled the still-blazing knife past Manald and aiming for the space between the armor on the back of the last trolls neck.

Faira returned her second hand to her sword and swung for a nearby goblin, trusting the riflemen to thin the herd around her so she would not be over run.
Hidden 3 mos ago Post by ReusableSword
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ReusableSword The Mighty.

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Merik Roak



Merik was quite proud of himself while the other goblins ran off from his roar. Goblins were always a fun fight and it would seem it wasn’t over. More goblins came up the wall dressed in rag tag armor and shields. Just from the look and combat ability he could tell that these ones were definitely going to be fun.

One of them that seemed a bit bigger than the others proclaimed himself as the chief and said something akin to them being better than everyone else then going on about the ram he had destroyed. These goblins were definitely full of themselves, the soldiers regrouped rather quickly and formed a shield wall to oppose the goblins. This was definitely a fight he wasn’t going to miss out on.

With his mighty blade in his hand Merik sprinted for a moment and leapt over the soldiers and landed in front of them. Standing slowly with a growl akin to a predator he smiled at the goblins, “Finally, Food!” Merik’s eyes glowed a slight red, muscles bulged, it almost seemed like he grew larger. With another deep breath and low growl Merik charged the opposing wall intent on swinging his sword in a mighty swing from right to left in an attempt to wipe the filth from the walls. It was safe to say the Lizardfolk entered into a rage.
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Manald's back was aching from the bullet it had cought, but the lycan perfectly knew that the real pain that any such projectile was bound to incude would only come after shifting back. For now a single one of these things in that position did not impair his capability to carry on too much, so the solution was obvious...

Manald had reached for the hopefully dead troll's axe and didn't even care to lift it on his way to the second troll at the gate. The creature was standing with its back to him and making so much noise with its hammer slamming against the gate that it probably would be unable to notice him or anyone else approaching from behind. The axe ploughed a small trench into the soft ground and, as it ran over one of many dead goblins, managed to almost split the small body in two due to its weight before continuing on as if nothing had happened.

The werewolf was about to finally grab it with both hands and start his approach when something flew past him at breakneck speed and way too little distance to feel particularly comfortable. What was that ? It had looked like a knife, but not just any knife but a knife on fire before it had buried itself in the troll's flesh. Manald was not confident at all that this would be enough to bring hammer troll down, so he started running and prepared for a strike with the axe from top to bottom with only little sideways movement. The plan was to smash the thing into the troll's head, but even if he'd miss (which was not all too unlikely) that he'd hopefully still hit the shoulder and bury the thing deep enough into the troll's torso to render it incapacitated for a bunch of moments. Enough time to repeat the bite procedure.

Manald clearly was counting on the troll either not noticing or just being too sluggish to turn around and defend itself properly against the danger. What the lycan did not seem to realize however was that he currently probably was by far the heaviest thing on the entire battlefield and thus, by himself, was not that unsuited to act as a battering ram against a gate already weakened by a series of troll hammer blows. He had committed onto a collission course with the troll standing right in front of it, intending to kill the creature as fast as possible.
Hidden 3 mos ago 3 mos ago Post by Pagemaster
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Collab with @LadyRunic

"Men and their posturing..." Naysein hissed under her breath, sparing a short glance and an eye roll for the Drow. She didn't waste any time bothering with a monologue as she drew fiddle from its case and winked at Zatana. "Reckon you can keep him busy while I play a tune for our lads?"

The drow stared at the orc, and the idiot Prince who charged one. That was the problem with the warrior Princes they just never thought of the fact they could loose their heads. Gritting her teeth, Zatana turned her attention the the massive orc. The thick bone was not something her knives could slice though, but she could see gaps in the armor that she could hit if she was smart, fast and very lucky. Which was a problem, you did not rely on luck. Skill was her only comfort and against this foe that was not much. "Rally the men, though they will dislike fighting along side myself. I shall see if I can make a scratch on him." For once Zatana questioned that.. She was an assassin and facing a prepared giant foe on the battlefield was not her style. She was trained to strike from behind or as a group against such an enemy. She had one chance to deal the orc some serious damage, then it would be a test to lose him again in the battle. The men, she thought, would balk at aiding one of the hated drow. With that, Zatana whispered her incantation and slipped into the shadows, stepping- dancing around the orc to slide behind him and attempt to drive the long dagger she had drawn into his leg. Hobbling the great creature would be of use. The other dagger she held in a defensive position in case he was faster in that armor than he seemed and struck out with a free hand or a kick.
Naysein took two steps up onto a parapet so that she could see much of the ongoing battle. The swaying mass of humans and Orcs was mesmerizing to see and she barely noticed herself sway backward to that an Orcish arrow sailed harmlessly past. She took several deep breaths through her nose, allowing the smell of the blood and fear to fill her. It awakened something inside of her, a deep seated longing to burn and destroy. She channelled the feeling into her voice as she began to sing. It began quietly, barely more than a whisper.

"Axes flash, broadsword swing
Shining armour's piercing ring"

She began to increase her volume, throwing her voice as any singer would so that it filled the space around her.

"Horses run with polished shield
Fight Those Bastards till They Yield"

The volume, amplified by her own innate magical ability, rose and echoed back from the massive stone walls behind her as she continued to sing.

"Midnight mare and blood red roan
Fight to Keep this Land Your Own"
For those soldiers nearest to her the effect was almost instantaneous. Tired arms gained new strength, fear was banished from their hearts, and those with injuries suddenly found the will to go on.

"Sound the horn and call the cry
How Many of Them Can We Make Die!"

Ghukk Bonecrusher was focused on the fight as soldiers rushed him. The song from Naysein rallying them to the battle, swiping the heavy warhammer across the first line of humans, sending them flying with many a broken bone, bruise and dent in their armor, the orc howled in outrage as a long stiletto was plunged into his calf. Turning, the orc was quick for his size but the press of men slowed him enough that when he swung the massive hammer towards the drow she was able to duck out of the way. The spine of the warhammer scraping along her chestplate. Tumbling backwards, Zatana cursed the orc as she blocked an orc’s sword and stabbed his wrist with her long stiletto. The orc howled and Zatana used him for leverage to regain her feet. Shoving the orc into the path of Ghukk Bonecrusher’s hammer again.

Seeing his ally be smashed aside by the hammer the orc roared in annoyance. “Fight me, coward!” Zatana grimaced, her arm aching from blocking a sword strike. Blood trickled down her arm, while she had saved the sword from separating her head from her body her arm had acquired a lovely gash. Dancing back as Ghukk mocked her ancestors and tried to enrage her, Zatana watched the Prince deal with the ashen skinned orc. It seemed Leonidas was holding his own. A good thing too, Zatana planned on having a talk to the Prince about not throwing her at heavily armored enemies outside of the role of an assassin. Yet, if he did require such of her, Zatana knew she would be preparing to handling this same situation again. For all Ghukk had a limp, the orc handled himself well. Soldiers fought and went flying as his warhammer swung.

"Follow orders as you're told
Make Their Yellow Blood Run Cold"
Naysein could hear the Orc despite the intensity of her song and, without missing a beat, she drew both her scimitars. The power of her own song flowed through her and she could feel the deeper strength of her true race starting to awaken and uncoil within her chest. She flourished her blades before her, a pattern that made the blades appear like a shimmering shield of steel. The first Orc faltered. And died.

"Fight until you die or drop
A Force Like Ours is Hard to Stop"

Her right hand flashed, a single quick thrust that caught the Orc in the base of its throat. It dropped to its knees and then fell forward with a crash to the stone. Even as her blade slid back, the second probed forward, forcing a second Orc to parry frantically, his blade banging into the helmet of another next to him.

"Close your mind to stress and pain
Fight till You're No Longer Sane"

An Orc blade slid down hers and she ignored it for a moment as it slammed into her sword pommel, causing her hand to vibrate unpleasantly. The second orc, his face open in a half snarl, shrieked and fell back as her other blade whipped across his face, opening it to the bone. The first Orc threw his considerable weight against her other hand and she gave way, allowing him to stumble forward even as she snapped the point up to take him in the groin.

"Let not one damn cur pass by
How Many of Them Can We Make Die!"
The orcs were slowly being pushed back by the soldiers with the aid of Naysein's song and blades. Zatana herself was moving among them, dodging Ghukk's strikes and countering with well placed jabs to the gabs in his armor. Both had their share of wounds, and Zatana was beginning to think longingly of goblins. Deflecting one of the crushing blows by tripping another orc who thought to take her from behind into it, she darted forward and drove her stiletto into a gap in the Bonecrusher’s side. Twisting she went into a slide under a fighting pair of orc and men while Ghukk pulled his blade free with a howl of outrage as his brother fell as he turned and found he had lost the elf. Whispering the incantation, Zatana watched the stiletto in the orc's side as Ghukk turned to charge the Prince. Grinning too widely, Bhakk raised his shield and made to shield bash the Prince as he healed his wounds. Hefting a more balanced blade, Zatana sent it flying into the light protection at the back of Bhakk's knee on the same leg she had stabbed him. Ducking a pair of fighting humans and orcs she raced towards the kneeling orc as he bellowed. Using the shadows to avoid the fighting as she twisted over the orc in an arch and made to slash his throat open.
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Hidden 3 mos ago Post by Hawthorne
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War Room

"Indeed." Balthazar said in agreement. The Prince and his retinue certainly had a way of attracting strange folk. "As for Sir Siegfried, we've yet to receive word from him. He has sent no riders or messengers ahead to meet us, perhaps so as not to alert the invaders." The lord explained, before moving to address the Duke's other concern. "Rest assured, however: unless they have been delayed for some reason or another, we can expect their arrival tomorrow." Siegfried could be a stubborn old fool with no regard for subtlety... but he could be relied upon to do what was necessary, when it was required of him.

The man watched as the Duke took off his crown-- a gesture that would be dangerous in a public crowd. After all, to do something like that would be to show weakness. Still, if the spymaster knew anything, it was that the weight of the crown was immense. In a gesture of solidarity, Balthazar leaned backward in his chair, allowing the tenseness in his body to slacken, if only for a moment. "I believe we've earned ourselves a moment of respite, my friend." He says, finishing his report and setting aside his pen. It will take some time for new reports to come in, and it was important to take rare moments like this to recuperate.

"All things considered, our forces have been holding out quite well." Balthazar mused, recalling the casualty report from memory. "It is my hope that by the time this concludes, the damage to the city's infrastructure would not be too great." The walls would need repair, as would the gate and the keep itself, but overall, things would hold for now.

He hoped that if all went well, things would stay that way.

Co-GM IC:

North Gate

The soldiers atop the walls rallied at the sight of their Prince, having charged headlong towards the enemies without fear. The men engaged the orcs in battle, and while it was quickly made evident that these invaders were not mere untrained goblins, but bloodthirsty warriors, they managed to put up a good fight. That is, of course, until Naysein began her battle-song. In an instant, her magic weaved its way into their hearts, and soon, a guardsman could indeed match an orc warrior in battle.

Leonidas dueled Bhakk Ashenskin, Zatana faced Ghukk Bonecrusher, and Naysein and the soldiers faced off against the orc warriors. The walls were a battlefield all of their own, the sounds of swords, steel, and song echoing for all to hear. As archers and riflemen dealt with the orcs in the battlefield below, so too did the guardsmen fight atop the walls. It almost seemed as if many of them were now timing their attacks to the bard's ballad, the rhythm of battle made literal in all its forms.

The prince finished off his opponent, a flash of golden light upon his hammer, while the assassin executed her target, her daggers slick with orc blood. The defeat of the orc lieutenants-- the blood brothers Bhakk and Ghukk, quickly crushed enemy morale, which was only exacerbated by the bard's blades and songs. Soon, the orcs are driven from the walls, leaving only stragglers... and the grappling hook that remains.

West Gate

The men atop the walls, though at first afraid, remembered their training and quickly formed up behind their lieutenant. Rudolph and his shield wall began pushing towards the goblin honor guard, the more experienced men at the front. They prepared to clash against Adgak and his goblins, but of course, they weren't the only ones atop the wall. Merik quickly closed the gap between the two forces, landing in the center. His words intimidated some of the goblins, but the presence of their warchief made it so that they did not hesitate.

Merik's sword swings were powerful, and drove many of the goblins back. The unlucky few caught by his first attack were cleaved in twain, thrown off the walls, or both. Soon however, with a shout from their warchief, they reformed ranks, now much harder to displace. Rudolph and his men were quick to assist the lizardman before he could become too surrounded, the two shield walls now face-to-face.

The goblins' tall shields and heavy armor made it difficult for the riflemen and bowmen to score any kills, but occasionally, a projectile would make it through the overlapped plates of metal and find purchase in goblin flesh. If this didn't kill, it would distract the enemy long enough for Rudolph or one of his men to finish them off. Adgak and his honor guard however, were not to be trifled with. They made sure that for every goblin killed, a soldier or two was killed. The warchief himself was no pushover, either-- he would wade through the ranks, strike at an opponent's legs, and retreat before he could suffer any reprisal.

These goblins weren't receiving any reinforcements, the fodder still having run for the hills. However, the effects were beginning to wane, and a few of them have begun to watch the battle take place on the walls. The defenders would have to defeat these goblins soon, or they would rally, and the siege on this part of the wall would start all over again! Perhaps they could try to kill their warchief, rout the honor guard, or try to dislodge the grappling hooks... whatever they choose, they cannot let this battle prolong.

East Gate

Faira and her men pushed forward across the walls, the reinforcements being a boon in that regard. She and the more experienced guardsmen killed the goblins in their paths, while the less experienced conscripts provided support. The lives of several men were lost in the push to reclaim the wall, but for every man that was killed, they had taken the lives of a few goblins. This ruthless calculus meant that eventually, the goblins, whose main strength were their numbers, were eventually defeated.

The mercenary rode the ladder down onto the fields where Manald was engaging the other troll. Her use of fire quickly put a stop to the troll's rapid regeneration, as the flames would cauterize their wounds and stop them from healing properly. With the axe troll thoroughly dead, the fiery dagger was sent flying in the direction of the hammer troll as the lycanthrope continued his charge.

The troll at the gate was hard at work in its attempts to break down the gate. It let out a roar as pain shot up its body, courtesy of Faira's dagger. It turned around to see Manald wielding an axe and moved to block the attack, but it was far too slow, compared to the swiftness of the Beastman. The axe found its mark in the creature's heart-- not quite the head, but while an attack like that would be a deathblow for most other creatures, this was a troll.

The hammer-wielding troll dropped its weapon, pulled the flaming dagger from its back, and opted to engage Manald in close quarters. Meanwhile, the goblin forces, without a ladder to climb, decide to try and attack Faira, sensing the lack of her other weapon. The riflemen and bowmen atop the walls continued to try and kill the goblins around her, but there were quite a few of them. Desperation and fear fueling their attacks, the enemies continued their assault.

Sewers

Both men and goblin alike were surprised when Drana's magic caused a wall of fire to erupt from the ground. Now that the enemies were thoroughly stopped in their tracks, this gave the heroes time to allow the militia to regain their bearings. A combination of combat, tactics, and magic were used in conjunction to push the goblins back. Near the fight's climax, Acrius lobbed a cluster of bombs at the wolves that were carrying the rest of the explosives, causing an earth-shaking detonation.

When the dust settled, Acrius would find himself mostly unharmed, damage to him prevented by the magical barrier. With the goblins' entrance to the sewers cut off, the few enemies that remained were quickly killed. Damage to the city's sewer system would be expensive to repair, but it was worth it-- better to deal with that down the line, than to face goblins and orcs within the city itself. As a result, it's quite likely that the sappers would try to seek alternate entrances to the city from different angles; likely one of the gates.

There were a few casualties, but thanks to the pair's assistance, most men would walk away alive, if a little shaken. The men that were injured had anything from sword cuts to missing limbs (though these were mostly fingers and toes), courtesy of goblin explosives. In spite of it all, one thing was for certain: the sewers were secure for now, and the defenders could choose to reinforce another part of the city's defenses, or report to the War Room, if they so chose.
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Hidden 2 mos ago Post by Arthanus
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Arthanus Grey Jedi

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After taking a moment to tend to his own wounds Leonidas quickly returned to the fight. Seeing the wound on Zatana he made his way to the drow. "You really need to be more careful this is the second day in a row I've had to patch you up." He said with a sly grin knowing all to well he himself had to be healed moments before. Again his hand glowed as he moved to touch her injured arm. The wound closed itself quickly and although he wouldn't be able to fully heal them they wouldn't trouble her any longer. After the quick patch job under the cover of his troops Leonidas took up his hammer once more.

With a deep breath Leonidas charged into the orcs remaining on the walls becoming a fluid tidal wave of pain as he pushed through supported by the troops and reinforced by Naysein's song. As they pushed forward Leonidas also made sure that he commanded a soldier to cut the ropes as the group passed them.
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Not only hammer-troll decided to drop his weapon, but so did the lycanthrope opposing him. The tremendous axe was good, but given the very close quarters they were about to engage each other in it would only not be of much use. Manald also remembered that there was armor embedded in or below that troll's skin, so as much as he'd never admit it his claws would not be of as much use as against all those goblins. The goal, again, was to hit the throat. It was the same weakpoint as with the other troll and this one hadn't even seen it happen, but this time there was no room left for a furious charge.

The wolf's thighs exploded in a burst of power, catapulting the colossal creature off the ground and towards the troll without too much forward momentum. The intention ? To come crashing down on it, make it collapse to the ground with him on top of it. Yet as the troll raised his arms to protect his head from any suspected attack they collided with Manald's feet and the troll gave him a spin. Instead of transferring all of the gained momentum onto the troll almost right from above, Manald's torso toppled forwards and the lycanthrope nosedived into the mud behind the trolls back. The latter stumbled forwards, but maintained enough stablity to make a turnaround.

Manald tried to get up from the ground as quickly as possible, but by the time he had recovered from the vicious downfall and turned around on all four legs the troll had already reached him and now got his hands around Manald's neck, starting to choke him from above. Now that, quite ironically, was Manald's weakpoint. The troll did not have claws like him that could rend stuff as easily, but cutting off the blood supply to one's brain would work on Manald just as well for a brief blackout during which one could do everything with the lycan.

The way out of this ? Manald did not spend precious moment on trying to think about some nice maneuver, but instead raised his arms from the ground and rammed his claws into the trolls hands. There was armor, but he could search for a way beneath the metal. He had to and he had to do so very quickly. Blood poured out of the troll's hands as he continued choking Manald while his victim shredded the troll's skin, seeking the edges of the armor plates to he could lever them out of their places and get access to the muscles and sinews beneath them. He'd not have much time to just physically disable the hands around his neck, but he also hoped that the troll would just give up before that due to excessive pain and blood loss.
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Zatana was kneeling, her breath escaping her in ragged gasps as she fought to get her breathing under control. The fight had worn on the dark elf. Looking up as a hand touched her injured arm, the woman raised a pale brow as she shook her head in disgust. "Better my arm than your life, Your Highness." Before he moved away the woman gripped his shoulder, her voice dipping low by his ear. "Be very aware, Prince Leonidas, I will do as you bid but my first concern is keeping you alive. Be careful." It was a begging plea and Zatana hated herself for doing it, showing such weakness. It was not a dark elf thing to do. A dark elf did not beg, they did not 'please'. Releasing the Prince as he rejoined the battle, the rouge let the battle push on.

She had been reckless, foolish, careless. Zatana felt the words drilled into her crash once again driving at her flaws. She was to keep the Prince alive, to gather information, and to keep herself from the public eye. Well, that had just gone well. Gritting her teeth, Zatana shoved herself to the feet with fresh daggers. Whirling into the fray she knifed a fleeing orc in the back, feeling Naysien's song strengthen herself. Grateful for it, she pressed on to try and keep near the Prince of the Empire of Man. If there was anything about to threaten the Prince she could potentially keep the foolish boy from cracking his head open from senseless, though very effective, courage. That was the fate of too many brave Princes who took the field in history.
Hidden 2 mos ago 2 mos ago Post by Borosev
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Merik & Rudolph


Rudolph witnessed not long after getting the troops to rally with him that the lizard man was planning on charging head-long into the goblin group. He merely shook his head and ordered his group to remain in formation as they moved across the battlement. Some friendly ranged units fired off rounds behind them, but the majority would fail to make a mark against the goblins.

He caught a glimpse of some goblins that were trying to knock down the door to the tower. The catapult crew above appeared to be lesser in number too, most likely the ones missing were responsible for holding the door in place.

A challenge, Finally the big man had a challenge. These goblins were very well trained and were able to hold their own against the soldiers that surrounded him. Merik was just behind the line using his bulk as an unmovable anchor.

The lizard could see where the battle was headed, the goblins he scarred away before were now starting to regain their courage again. The enemy shield wall was able to maintain itself and even push them back with their Chieftain moving this way and that. Some would say cheap tricks but there is no such thing as honor when it's a fight for your life. Merik knew it was his turn to be brutal, it was time to be the monster they all thought he was.

Turning to the archers in the back for a moment he shouted over the fighting, “Wait for opening!” he growled and turned back to the wall in front of him. Plunging his sword into the stone he began reaching effortlessly over the men. Merik dug his claws into the opposing wall and ripped a shield free. The goblin was quickly met with sharp teeth as the lizard bit down and picked the poor goblin up. His maw enveloping the head and neck, he began shaking him from side to side like a wolf with small prey. Biting down hard, the headless goblin corpse dropped down in front of him and Merik swallowed the rest (Hungry Jaws).

This in and of itself would have been intimidating enough but the dragon's touch was not done yet. Blood of the goblin still dripping from his mouth he inhaled deeply, the underside of his jaw beginning to glow red and orange. Aiming for the hole in the formation, Merik filled it with a cone of flesh melting fire. The flames could very well turn the metal of armor and shields glowing red. He turned his head from side to side to effect as much as he could. He knew that this would at least give an opening to the archers. 

The lizardman's actions were indeed disturbing, but impressive all the same. Rudolph saw the opportunity and signalled the archers to open fire. Arrow and shot both made a mess of the frightened goblins, their wall beginning to crumble.

And after a few more seconds, Rudolph gave the order to charge. Spears and swords at the ready for the first strike.

Ranged units held off their fire and began redirecting their attention back toward those outside the walls.

Despite their situation, the goblins hastily readied themselves for the oncoming charge, once again showing their decent training.

A few men were countered upon impact and brought down, but the majority of the defenders overwhelmed the goblins and it became an all out brawl. Soldiers and goblins were changing opponents almost immediately, if not facing off against more than one at a time. Time to let out some steam! Rudolph thought smirking as he brought his sword down heavily on a partly distracted goblin, the blade digging far into the creatures chest, and smacking another away with his shield. He quickly yelled out to Merik over the fighting, Tuck in lad, all the goblins for you to eat! he chuckled as he countered a spear strike from one goblin, and used it to pierce another.

Merik continued to forgo his large sword and continue with just his natural weapons. It did take him a moment to recover from using his ability but it wasn't too much longer before he was back in the fight. Leaping into the fray once more the giant lizard landed and immediately began clawing, crushing, slamming, and throwing any enemy that came near. His time spent in the arena came to light as he dug his sharp claws through flesh and bone. His strong tail slammed and wrapped itself around the enemies pulling them down or dealing blunt damage.
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Forett Dragon Lord

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Drana would slowly get to her feet, thinking of a healing word but daring not to use it until she had a short rest to recuperate. She would pull out a potion, moving over to Acrius despite her injuries to give him the potion. She could not tell if he was injured due to the mixture of blood and sewage that had been from the fight and the multiple explosions. “Drink this, we must move to assist the men here before we take our leave. This potion should heal your wounds.” She would push it into his hands, quickly reeling about to try and move over to assist the men who had finished cleaning up a few stragglers. She could see a few men were beyond saving, but there was one who could be spared from death.

She was oblivious to the absence of her two knights.

Dana's spell was impressive, to say the least. Acrius expected to be blasted to be more… exploded, but there he was, alive and standing- not a single scratch on him. He glanced at the collapsed tunnel, "I hope Gramps and Leo don't mind us redecorating of the sewers… " He mumbled to himself before a potion was shoved onto his hands, ”I don't need this, your spell made sure of that."

Acrius hoisted himself up and patted his shoulders. ”Malfoy," He threw the potion into the boy's hands, ”Your shoulder looks banged up, drink."

Acrius walked faster to catch up with Drana, ”Appreciate the assistance, Cleric Drana," He said, ”... Speaking of, where are the Paladins? Don't tell me they-"

Drana would look around, seeing that they were nowhere to be found she would look hesitant to answer the question. She would stutter before responding with a quick “We will worry about those who are alive, then we will find those who are not.” before looking more solemn than she had prior.

Drana hated having to bring back her knights, it was an arduous process that often made it difficult to hide their identities. Many towns had run them off, some even going as far as to openly claim that the only reason she wasn’t hanged was due to the Sacred Order’s sigil. She did not fault them, but that was neither here nor there.

With a nod, she would continue over to the men who were a few moments beyond death. “Come, I will need you to make sure no one attacks me.” Drana would not wait, every second was a second closer to their departure. There would only be two she could save, and so she fell into her work. With a flick of her hand her eyes would glow as she placed her other hand on the still warm body of a soldier who had been bludgeoned in the head by debris. Moments later, his chest would rise and fall. By no means was he healed to normal health, merly stabilized so that he could receive proper treatment. She would then begin to move on to the other barring she could… blood now dried to her dirty face.

Acrius arched an eyebrow. Either this girl was the strongest person he's met or she was the type to bury herself in work to forget… or it was something else entirely. He wouldn't pry, however, most had their secrets.

Acrius could only nod at her request. ”Rest is also important, Cleric Drana, so don't push yourself too hard," He said simply, not realizing the irony of him, of all, suggesting it, ”I am no magician but using spell after spell has to be tiring." As they walked around, he watched her work. He'd never seen a cleric at work and it was something else. No soldier would be so ungrateful to attack someone healing their comrade at arms, right?

A voice came from the soldiers, "See what I said? She's a witch I tell ya." It was the soldier he had 'trained' with earlier in the day, "I say we tie her up and arrest her, she's likely working for the goblins!"

This soldier, James Albright, looked much less worn out and cleaner than the others. Even more so than Malfoy, who did his fair share after he returned. His blue eyes had a glint of lechery, an ulterior motive in mind. James made a move to the Cleric, rope in hand.

Acrius 'accidentally' let a throwing dagger fly, narrowly missing James' face. ”Apologies, it somehow slipped from my hand due to the blood." He moved to retrieve the dagger.

"You again!" James spat out, recognizing the man who utterly humiliated him earlier in the March, "Heh even you can't stop it, I've received orders from my captain, you damned conscript."

”Oh?" Acrius replied, thoroughly unimpressed, ”Unfortunately, I likely can. " He let his royal sigil dangle from his hands, signifying his part as of the royal retinue. It was like a captain directly challenging a decision from the royal family. Acrius internally apologized to Balthazar for technically abusing his role. He also didn't really receive any orders like that.

The captain would call back the peeved off James and decided to leave the matter to Acrius. He didn't want to be the one who questioned the royal family.

Drana was too tired to fight. After casting the two cantrips, she would ease back and debate using potions instead of her cantrips… when she checked her bag, the approaching man with rope would attract her attention. She would stand up, her demeanor changing as she partially hugged her staff as though it would offer her some form of protection. It hadn’t been the first time she was deemed ‘witch’.

Before she uttered the words to summon her knights, Acrius would throw a dagger at the man to ‘sway’ the queer lad’s opinion. She was relieved, summoning her followers would not aid her in swaying her title of witch. If anything, it would earn her the true title of necromancer.

“Thank you, Acrius.” She would speak softly, realizing the toll that high level spell had taken on her. While cantrips used a negligible amount of magic, her staff had more than enough energy stored for her more advanced magics. The gems were not glowing with their usual vibrance. “You seem to be a little more than just some ‘conscript’, Acrius… What does that badge stand for?”

"In a way, conscript is my rank, a very lucky one," Acrius replied, keeping an eye on James, ”Honestly I was paying half attention when Siegfried told me of its significance but… screw it, you've earned this much. I am part of His Majesty Prince Leonidas' royal guard."

Acrius at least knew that almost all humans in the kingdom knew of the royal family. Hopefully that provided enough to sate the Cleric's curiosity. ”We'll be making our way to meet dear old gramps before doing anything else when you're ready."

Drana understood why he had done what he had done now… but if the royal guard was here, that would mean that… “Is the prince… here? In this battle?” Was there a war going on? If the prince was in open combat it had to be very bad. Her concern would multiply as her own thoughts collided with the reality that these men had more than just suspicions of her craft.
“We should leave quickly, I need to meet this gramps character.” Drana was used to people who disregarded authority given her position as a cleric. Acrius’ lax attitude was one of the few reliefs within these tunnels. That and his ability to fight.
Drana would move away from the men, trying her best not to instigate anything further. “Lets be on our way,”

Acrius straightened his back and checked his bearings. He had all of his gear and was ready to leave, "If you loved my humour, you'll love Balthazar's."

Drana’s concern was visible, but she did not say anything rude.





The walk to the keep was long and brisk. The battle still rages around then, giving a surreal sort of feeling as they trod through the streets. The duo separated from the contingent of soldiers. Acrius didn't make any small talk other than some questions about her order and a few about the Paladins. He was very surprised at how steely she appeared in the face of all of this.

Drana did not look as stern as she had at the moment after the blast. She did not shirk away from questions, eager to respond to anything that would take her mind from the present state of things. She would tell Acrius that the order was in and around the Black Desert and assisted in guiding the undead to rest. She would throw in that they also helped people pass safely through the more unsavory parts of the land. She would tell Acrius that she was a cleric of death, one chosen by her order. It wasn’t a lie, but the truth could be told later when there was no risk of losing her only ally. “The knights will be back, they are persistent.” was all she would say on the paladins that had been with her in the tunnels.

Acrius would flash his sigil to be allowed entry into the keep. A maid would lead them to the war-room. In an Acrius-like manner he would bash into the war-room and wave nonchalantly. "Yo," He greeted, "Acrius reporting. Sewers safe from goblins. Someone may or may not have redecorated the sewers."

His eyes would fall onto the current Duke of Bergkoff, Oh right, manners and decorum. Acrius’ mind flashed to Siegfried and he stood up straighter, standing in attention. ”I also have come to deliver Cleric Drana from… Tarnosh?"

As the keep's doors were brashly opened, the Duke quickly looked upon the one who entered, he half assumed it was a messenger with desperate news at first, but realised with slight annoyance that it was the young Acrius followed by yet another stranger.
"So it appears. Well done indeed sir." he said nodding before he got up from his chair. "I do wish to know the full report of how you managed to repel them, especially given the news of explosives being used." he asked.
"Despite being an alternate means of entering the city, it is also a weak point for the city's defences. With the right placement of explosives, catastrophic damage could be done to the structure of the walls on the east and south specifically." he explained after.

Seeing the Duke was a slight relief, however Acrius’ disrespect was appalling. Reading the room, Drana was able to see that the duke and several servants seemed to be very used to the way Acrius had spoken. She let it go, but when Acrius failed to introduce her properly? She clenched a fist.
“Of house… Turash.” She would interject, letting the Duke speak first. She didn’t want Acrius getting into any trouble because of her arrival. Seeing that Acrius seemed to lack any form of formal education, Drana would inform all those present of the situation. She stood up straight and spoke fluently, though the blood on her face and dirt on her clothing was not fitting of one from her order. She detailed the collapse of the sapper’s tunnel as well as how they brought wolves strapped with their improvised explosives. She gave a detailed account of the encounter, starting from her appearance to Acrius. She would make sure to mention each spell she had casted as well as the waves of enemies they faced. She spoke with a refined tone, much in the same way she gave reports post mission in the black desert.

“After making sure to save as many men as I could, Acrius and I made our way to the war room.” She would stand at attention, her appearance more that of a mage given her long staff and lack of heavy armor or chain mail.

Balthazar let out a small sigh at Acrius’ behavior. It was clear that Siegfried’s training on etiquette was very much lacking-- not only did he introduce a noble lady with informality, he also said her name incorrectly. A grave transgression. The spymaster made a mental note to give the boy a few lessons on demeanor, when the time comes. For a moment, he considered discussing the battle, but for now, there was something more pressing: the noblewoman in front of him.

"You must forgive my associate, Lady Turash." The warlock bowed apologetically. "“He is of common birth, and has yet to learn how to properly address those of noble blood.

The warlock took a few moments to size the woman up. Her robes were that of a priest and healer, colors not unlike that of the Sacred Order. At a glance, he could tell that the staff in her hands was an artifact of some magical power-- though he would not know to what extent unless he were to inspect it in closer detail.

"Forgive my manners; it has been a long day for everyone. Allow us to introduce ourselves." Balthazar starts. "This is His Grace, Duke Manuel Karstilli, of the Grand Duchy of Bergkoff." It was polite to introduce your host first in any noble function. "And I am Balthazar Trevarthen, Lord of Atheron, but currently in service to the Crown Prince." He said formally.

"It is a pleasure to meet you." The man bowed again, gauging her reaction.

Acrius didn’t realize how rude his behaviour was infront of the three nobles and even raised an eyebrow at Balthazar bowing his head down for him. ”Apologies, Cleric Drana, it seems that I have offended you." He said as he made his way to a wall and, while still standing in attention. Talks between nobles tended to be one of prodding and information gathering. As such the orange-eyed boy didn’t like this type of environment too much and he was certain he was on more than a few nobles shit-list. He leaned back against the wall and would stay there and listen to their conversation and answer questions directed at him.

Drana felt bad for having put Acrius on the spot the way she had, but she thought it would be better if he felt bad then find a harsh reprimanding in public. The formal introduction surprised her, however she did her best not to let it show. The war room was full of important names she did not know, but for them to be associated with the prince? She assumed that these men held a great amount of sway. She lowered her head slightly, though she did not bow.
“I regret that we must meet under the circumstance, though I must say I owe a great deal to this commoner you speak of. The tunnels would not be safe without his work.” She knew she spoke out of place, but she did not speak outside of her own right.

She straightened herself. “I am here to provide any assistance I can. It is my sworn duty to protect those who are unable to defend themselves and lend assistance to those who are in need.” She would swallow, pausing for a moment.

The Duke took in the report delivered by Drana, his tired and stressed expression did not change. "I see. We will have to investigate the damage when things quiet down." he said more to himself as he made his way from the table to go pour himself a small drink.
"Your help is most welcome Miss Drana." he said nodding before downing the drink in one go.
He held up a hand apologetically afterwards, "I must apologise in turn my lady, for not showing the proper decorum. Under any other circumstance, I would be more presentable, but it is as Sir Balthazar has said, things have been quite difficult." He then gestured if either Drana or Balthazar would like a drink.

Balthazar closed his eyes as he took in the noblewoman’s words, politely dismissing the Duke’s offer of a drink. Nobles taking up priestly duties was uncommon-- it was hard to dedicate yourself to your duties to the land as well as duties to your deity simultaneously. Still, Drana seemed like she had enough awareness on how to act the part of a lady and of a priestess.

He was a little surprised to see her so quick to defend Acrius, even after the insult he had unintentionally dealt her, but that in itself was commendable behavior of a noble. "So I see." The lord said. "Your assistance is greatly appreciated, Lady Turash. You and Acrius have played an integral role in this city’s defense, and for that, you have our thanks. " He continues.

"...but I’m afraid our work is not yet done." Balthazar appended. "Since you have offered your help, I will not turn away your aid, especially since you seem to be more than willing to assist." The spymaster turned to address both Drana and Acrius. "For now, you two are to await further orders-- we should be receiving battlefield reports momentarily, which will let me know where best to field you."

The man then turned to sit at his chair, a Record-Hunter moving the pieces on the map to reflect the situation: removing the goblin forces from the sewers and placing a wooden block to represent an impassable obstacle in the form of a collapsed tunnel. With a wave of his hand, Balthazar offered Acrius and his new companion seats at the table, where they could rest their weary feet-- if only for an instant.

”I am fine," Acrius replied promptly and simply leaned back into the wall. ”... A drink of water would be appreciated, however." The boy has always unconsciously felt ‘off’ and awkward in the presence of nobles. Though he was sulking a bit he would always stay true to himself; common sense, etiquette and decorum be damned, he’d always be the type to speak his mind. A maid would soon hand him a pitcher of water and a cup, he poured himself a cup of water as he waited.

Drana curtseyed lightly, “I would love to join you in drink, but I must wait until after our assailants have been repelled.” She looked to the duke, hoping she had not caused any offense. Afterwards, she would take Balthazar’s word to heart and find herself a seat. As much favor as she had with her god, she still needed to rest. She would make herself comfortable, losing herself as she thought deeply of what was to come. Soon enough she would have to bring her servants back or they would be quite cross with her. The last thing she needed was Gordon causing problems with the living. Looking up at Acrius’ request for water, she would wave the servant over for her own cup. Nodding to the servant in a silent thanks, she would drink afterward.

One could forgive the old man for sitting idly in a time like this. He seemed tired, and had been hard at work at his post. In truth, however, he never stopped working. There was simply far too much work to be done for him to remain comfortable. Thankfully, this was work he found fulfilling-- something he found purpose in. Even as they sat around the War Room, awaiting news, he was already at work on organizing the next set of troop movements.

Over the course of the next fifteen minutes, messengers would arrive to deliver updated reports from the battlefield. It seemed that the Prince, Zatana, and Naysein had engaged enemy Orcish officers in battle, and had succeeded. Now it was only a matter of time until they cleared the North Gate and secured the area.

Meanwhile, Rudolph and Merik had repelled a majority of the enemy forces near the West Gate, and had even managed to destroy the battering ram. For now, however, they were fighting a Goblin Warchief and his Honor Guard. The death of a Warchief would be a crippling blow to enemy morale-- something Balthazar hoped his companions could manage.

Lastly, it seemed fighting had intensified near the East Gate. Reinforcements from the Keep were used to great effect, and had managed to drive the enemies from the wall. Manald and Faira had been able to defeat a single troll, and were fighting on the fields below to eliminate the second one. Once that one falls, it shouldn’t be too difficult to clear the field.

“It appears things are falling into place.” Balthazar says, as his Record-Hunters update the map of the War Room. "“If all goes well, we will be through the worst of the day’s siege soon.” He then turns to Acrius and Drana. “I believe you’ve earned yourselves a moment of respite-- you can head to your lodgings for now, as your services are not desperately needed on any of these fronts…” The old man says. “...of course, if you are so eager to return to the battlefield… Perhaps you can lend your aid to the East Gate?” He suggests.

“I do worry about what tomorrow holds.” Drana spoke more to herself than to anyone in particular. If Balthazar was correct and this was the worst part of the siege then there would soon be cause to celebrate, but Drana was not used to quick victories. She felt as though there was something else at work with this attack, though she had no information to base it off of outside of her own battle. Goblins and orcs shouldn’t have been clever enough to come up with that plan in the sewers… Right? It could have been simple luck, or a clever goblin’s machinations...

“I will lend aid to the east gate. Is there anything else you can tell us about the enemies movements? Or is what you have already stated all there is to know?” She was well aware that she was a stranger here, and she did not want to deal with any more accusations than she would have to after the coming battles.
She was able to take Solace in the thought that these people trusted her to fight again.

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Hidden 2 mos ago 2 mos ago Post by Hawthorne
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Hawthorne Mageknight

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War Room

"At the East Gate are Goblins and a pair of Siege Trolls." Balthazar said, pointing to the figures on the map. "But if the reports are correct, the Goblins upon the wall will soon be dealt with, and the Royal Guard will have slain one or both of the trolls." The lord explained. "As such, if you choose to go, it would likely be to help... clear the field, so to speak."

"Even still." He paused. "Seeing as the defenders on the East Gate have been having the most trouble comparatively, your assistance will nevertheless be appreciated. It would also put us in a better position to defend the gate in the event of a surprise." Balthazar rationalized, before turning to Acrius. "I trust you will be accompanying Lady Turash during this endeavor, Acrius?" Despite the old man's neutral expression, the boy would know that this was no question-- rather, it was an implied command.

Balthazar would have preferred if the two had deigned to rest, even for a little while longer, but as the priestess was ready to return to the battlefield, there was no other choice but to give her an escort. There were multiple reasons for this. Firstly, Drana was not just an outsider-- she was a noblewoman. Any injury to her would reflect upon the Royal Guard, even if she had lent the defenders assistance of her own volition. Secondly, Acrius had, knowingly or otherwise, dealt her an insult-- something he had to repent for on his own time. Lastly, Balthazar needed Acrius to keep an eye on her; until the spymaster got more information on Drana Turash, he could not trust her to operate on her own, nor could he give her any information about the siege itself.

Whatever the case may be, it would be better to be safe than sorry. Balthazar waited for them to ask any questions or speak their mind, but once they were ready to go, he would say goodbye. "You are dismissed." He said, formally. "May you find good fortune on the battlefield." As they left, the man returned to his work. With all troop reserves depleted, he could no longer make any rotations-- all he could do is send all injured men on the frontlines to the triage center... and send the dead to the graveyard for sorting.

Such was the price of war.

Co-GM IC:

North Gate

Between Leonidas's charge, Zatana's assistance, Naysein's song, and the guardsmen's numbers, any remaining Orcs were quickly driven from the walls. Those who stayed and fought were put to the sword or thrown over the walls. As a soldier cuts the grappling hook, a rallying cry resounds across the walls. The men scream in celebration as the Orcs retreat-- with their attempt to scale the walls foiled, and with two dead Orc lieutenants to show for it, there was no reason to prolong this battle.

Orcs were proud and bloodthirsty warriors, but it seemed even they could realize when a battle could no longer be won. There was no glory in a defeat like this, so there was no reason to die for it. With the Orc offensive broken, guardsmen and soldiers alike would turn to the fallen. Most turned to their fallen comrades-in-arms, a few of them crestfallen as they carried the bodies from the wall. Some of the more glory-seeking men moved to take trophies from the Orc bodies: ears and fangs-- proof of their kills. A few of them simply sat there in thought; Naysein's song invigorated them, but with adrenaline slowly fading, fatigue began to set in.

And now all that needed to be done was to return to the Keep. Perhaps if the defenders at the other gates had received similar success, this battle would soon be done.

West Gate

Rudolf's leadership meant that none of his men would hesitate, and Merik's ferocity was enough to give even a hardened veteran pause. Thus, it was no surprise that after several moments of intense fighting, that one side had to give. With Goblin forces in disarray, no amount of shouting or discipline would get them to move back into formation. The Lizardman's Dragonfire and hungry jaws was an excellent deterrent in this regard, completely throwing the enemies into a panicked frenzy.

The guardsmen's superior size and training helped dispatch many of the Goblin Honor Guard. Rudolf and Merik would wreak havoc in their lines, which let the soldiers finish the enemies off when an opportunity presented itself. Even Adgak Heel-Slicer, as skilled as he was, was unable to lead his forces effectively, or kill enough men to turn the tide.

Realizing this, the Warchief shut his eyes, reached for something attached to his belt, and then threw it on the ground. Even among the clashing of steel, and the grinding of flesh, the sound of glass shattering resounded across the walls. Soon, a noxious, stinging green cloud erupted from the broken flask. Everyone who inhaled the gas felt instantly nauseous-- their eyes would water as the foulest stench they could imagine emanated from the alchemical concoction.

Human and goblin alike wheezed in pain and disgust. The Goblin Warchief, having anticipated this, quickly disengaged from the fight and returned to the grappling hooks, where he moved to make his retreat. Several archers and riflemen attempted to shoot Adgak as he retreated, but the cloud obscured their vision, and their projectiles would hit nothing but the stones of the castle.

"This isn't over, humans! I will have my revenge!" Adgak Heel-Slicer cried out as he abseiled. In a few moments, he would reach the moat and quickly retreat, a group of goblin shieldbearers moving to cover him. It seems he calls himself a Warchief, but at the first sight of potential defeat, he turns tail and runs away! Now all that was left was this stinking cloud and the Goblin Honor Guard that he left behind to die. The defenders need only clear these stragglers and destroy the grappling hooks, and the battle would be decided.

East Gate - Interior

Acrius and Drana would soon arrive on the scene, where the sounds of battle only seem to intensify. The walls seemed clear of goblins-- the reinforcements must have dealt with the ones atop the wall, even going so far as to destroy the siege ladders. The gate rocked occasionally from the force of the beastman and the troll engaging in a close-quarters brawl. A soldier near the gate wonders if he should open the gate to help, but is quickly shut down by his commanding officer-- they cannot open the gate to sally forth and meet the attackers on the field; not while the troll still lives.

Several men work on moving soldiers and militia from the wall to the city to receive treatment for their wounds, or to move the dead away from the fighting. Upon the wall itself, bowmen and riflemen fire at Goblins below, so as to ensure Faira and Manald are not overwhelmed by the green horde.

East Gate - Exterior

Meanwhile, in the killing fields below, the battle rages on. As Faira engages a group of goblins, Manald fights the remaining troll at close range. Arrows and bullets fly towards the goblin infantry to dissuade them from sneaking up on the Royal Guard while they do their work. Many greenskins don't make it close enough to even threaten them, but there was no doubt about it-- without archer support, the duo would quickly be overwhelmed.

Of course, that's less of an issue for Manald, who was currently in a life-or-death wrestling match with a troll. As blackness begins to set in, Manald claws and rends the troll's hands as best he can. With desperation fueling his strikes, there was a disgusting crack as he manages to cut deep into troll's bone. The creature let out a pained groan as it relinquished its grip on its opponent, instead opting to kick the beastman away, causing him to hit the gate hard.

Thankfully, the gate is rather sturdy, even with the damage the trolls had done to it. Now there was some distance between Manald and the hammer troll-- this was an opportunity to turn things around!

...or die trying.
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Hidden 2 mos ago 2 mos ago Post by Inertia
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Inertia Pretty Lackadaisical

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Acrius almost choked on his drink as he spotted the tell-tale look from Balthazar. Ugh... When Balthazar had that look and tone there was no arguing, Acrius learned that the hard way. Some other soldiers have asked how he can differentiate Balthazar's samey neutral expressions and he just shrugged. The orange-eyed boy lightly coughed into his dirtied sleeve. "Of course," He continued, "Technically Cleric Drana is still part of my responsibility, right?" He handed his cup to one of the maids before gesturing towards Drana.

"Well... Cleric Drana, shall we?"




Both arrived at the east wall. They were allowed up the battlements after Acrius flashed his sigil at the guards on the staircase. The air of the battlefield felt as if it would draw to a close soon. From a quick glance there was no real way for him to physically go down and help Manald and Faira- short of breaking a few bones. As such he simply 'borrowed' another set of bow and quiver and began drawing. He would try and support Manald and Faira by taking out goblins aiming for their blindspots or simply just thinning the horde.

"Got any ideas, Cleric Drana?" Acrius asked in between shots, gauging to see if she had any clever ideas to help support both of them on the ground, "I have no idea for the spells Clerics do."
Hidden 1 mo ago Post by Fetzen
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Fetzen

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Manald


Manald was taking in huge amounts of air, trying to restore the usual levels of oxygen in the vast amounts of blood inside his body. He couldn't continue fighting properly while still halfway suffering from suffocation, so the lycan's intention was to buy at a few seconds of time by just walking around the troll. He kept watching his enemy very closely for even a primitive mind could come up with a surprising move once in a while, but the troll seemed a little busy too for he had to figure out how to continue fighting with only one functioning hand. Of course this brief moment of mutual waiting would mean it would start healing, but that was a drawback Manald just had to accept given his own, current state. He hoped to be able to re-engage well before said healing process would have reached completion though.

In the meantime, Manald took little notice of what was happening on the wall. His hearing had been saturated by the steady stream of loud bandgs and screams pretty much from the very beginning of the battle anyway and his eyes had to keep looking at different things in front of him. No goblins appeared to come close enough to engage in a melee, that was all that mattered for the moment. As the blackness in the corners of his eyesight started to disappear and Manald regained both his full field of view and overall ability to think properly, he glanced at the troll's hand: Not fully healed yet! The beast was still effectively one-armed!

Manald jumped forward, charing at the troll in the most violent manner he could muster. If things would work out now the troll would be the one lying in the mud with a giant lycan on top of him. Also Manald aimed his claws at the troll's eyes, intending to take away the monster's eyesight in order to gain a lot of a further advantage. He doubted that a troll's hearing was good enough to locate his enemies very well given the overall noise of battle surrounding them, so blinding the beast was just bound to make things a lot easier for him. Of course that would by no means kill the troll, but success would mean that he could attack his throat more easily. At least that had worked for ultimately disabling axe-troll, hadn't it ?
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