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    1. ASTA 10 yrs ago


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Do your ears work?

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I'm still here. Hopefully this doesn't die man. I was looking forward to it.
This looks cool. Gonna drop this here really fast. I should have this finished up in about a day or two.


Name: Augustus Teach Crowns
Race: Baseline Human (allegedly)
Age: 36 Earth Years

Key Personality Traits and Quirks


Crowns has toured his fair share of alien worlds during his stint in the S-GAF Frontier Army. Having experienced a myriad of alien cultures and interacted with all types of people throughout his travels, he is quite privy to socializing with virtually anyone regardless of their economic, racial, or religious background, and will integrate almost seamlessly into any squad regardless of its member composition.


Crowns was notorious amongst his old army buddies for having a bombastic "let's get it done" attitude towards life. Truegrit, teamwork, and a splash of positivity (of which should be delivered in the form of bizarre and outlandish speeches to distressed allies) are the core tenants Crowns lives by when trying to complete any sort of group-based objective.

The following was likely tongue-in-cheek when he initially said it, but Crowns asserts that there is no challenge that five guys armed with cheap combustion guns and what he affectionally calls "the juice" cannot overcome.

Equipment and Skills:

@Sierra I understand, but that's some of the beauty of it all. You build your character without knowing who they are, so you have to 'learn' who they are, though in time, they will get their memories back, and you will get to give them a backstory then. You're welcome to join, though I'll be cutting off applications after you.

@ASTA Characters need to be human I'm afraid. Not something I specified but I didn't expect someone to try and make a character like that.

And also a minor spoiler that creates more questions than answers but any sort of 'automaton' would pretty much be dead on arrival due to in-story reasons.

Number: 30

Class: Barbarian

Weapon: Claws and teeth. Has an awesome blood-curdling roar as well.


Terrifying heavy assault automaton who looks a lot like a tiger. Roughly the size of a compact sedan (with a compact sedan's mass, too).
Okay, I presume that means we still have Lum on board, though Claw is still awkwardly removed from the rest of the characters. Boa'Noktus sounds worryingly similar to various would-be and actual megalomanic deities, by the way; from the descriptions of her I'd heard, I had honestly expected her to be more... I don't know, reserved. Rational.

If I am to presume that Claw's trip to wherever is going to take more than the night, I guess Jaelnec and Aemoten (I think that's all that would actually participate at this point?) could start handling the business they have in Zerul City?

That's an accurate presumption. He'll likely pop up roughly around the time Jaelnec and Aemoten have finished with their business in the city.


<...you sent me to Rodoria to test me?>

<Yes! I had to see if you were able to peacefully intermingle with the assorted peoples of the world’s assorted lands! Aside from that whole ‘lohk situation’, I’d say you’ve performed most admirably my young and fierce ally! You’re picking up the native tongue relatively quickly, you haven’t eaten anyone important yet, and you haven’t garnered the immediate attention of anything that could kill you with but a hateful gaze! You even made a few friends, too!>

Boa’Noktus had magically transported the both of them to a secluded clearing within one of Malkor’Kurz’s many ancestor forests. Such forests were held in hallowed regard by the land’s northernmost cultures due to their perceived status as the ultimate resting place of del’korm dead. Here, the souls of the deceased were believed to assist La’Khan in defending the Reach from foreign invaders by taking up residence within the material composition of such woodlands, infusing them with the ability to dynamically perceive their surroundings and react to threats in an active and aggressive fashion.

Aside from finding their current location eerily peaceful, Claw’s del’tes hostess had also apparently elected to bring him to this particular forest because of its affinity for upholding secrecy in all its myriad forms. Widely known as the Whispering Wood, little sunlight penetrated the thick, weighty branches and overlapping leaves of its tremendous oak trees, while sound seemed to somehow remain localized near its origin point.

<And now that you’ve passed my little assessment Ajanok, I think you’ll make a very fine addition to the little plan that I have in mind!>

It wasn’t fear but a mild feeling of apprehension that coursed through Claw’s veins upon hearing Boa’Noktus utter the word ‘addition’. Frankly, he didn’t trust her at all; the thought of being some component in whatever plan or scheme that she had in mine unnerved him greatly. Why was she so interested in him of all people anyway? As far as he could figure, Boa’Noktus was nothing short of a physical goddess, one who was gifted with unnatural bodily strength and the capacity to ferry herself to far-flung locales within a single blink of an eye. To Claw, it made no sense why someone who could do so much would have any interest in someone as mundane as he.

And using the Whispering Wood as a secret meeting place? Claw was convinced that was a lie or at the very least a gross act of insanity on her part. Knowing her, she could’ve just waved her claws above her head in some cockamamie way and conjured fourth a mystical field of otherworldly magics that prevented any interlopers from prying into their conversation.

In fact, why even exchange spoken words at all? Why hadn’t she just injected them directly into his mind just as she had done back when he still resided upon Rodoria’s soil?

<Because none of that would be as immersive, Ajanok,> Boa’Noktus answered aloud nonchalantly, her shimmering eyes fixed upon her del’korm guest. She floated aimlessly in the air, claws lazily laced behind her braided and bejeweled head, her body extended in such a fashion as if it rested upon an elongated sofa. She looked incredibly comfortable.

<There are many things that I could do with magic, but you remove yourself from many of the pleasures and sensations that the world has to offer when you overindulge in the utilization of sorcery.>

Ajanok blinked. Boa’Noktus feet were on the ground now, the del’tes standing comfortably to his right, her hands neatly folded behind the small her back, tail idling sedately behind her.

<Walk with me.>

Claw, still mentally reeling from all that had transpired within the last hour or so, did as he was instructed, and accompanied the del’tes in silence as she navigated a worn path that led deeper into the Whispering Wood.

<Ajanok, I took interest in you because you have a particular knack for acquiring more allies than you do enemies. You also seem to do well with new experiences. You’re not easily offended, you tend to maintain your composure when under stress, and you’re eager to learn new things. Most del’korm don’t have what you have, and therefore wouldn’t last three moons in Rodoria because they would be unable to properly get along with your average Rodorian.>

Boa’Noktus plucked a small flower from the ground mid-stride, its former life guaranteed by a single plain ray of sunlight that pierced downward from the forest ceiling and on to a patch of vegetative growth that once played host to the small plant. She turned it to and fro in her grip for a few moments, seemingly taking in all of the contours and angles of its whole, before letting it fall slowly to the ground.

<Because you’re so adept at handling foreigners, and because you are still scarcely known throughout much of the world beyond our shores, you are the perfect candidate to function as my eyes, ears, and my instrument of action. Through you, it is my hope to begin the process of ensuring a future for my people...and by extension yours as well.>

Claw stopped dead in his tracks. <You talk like there’s something out there that means to do us harm, Boa’Noktus.>

<Not one thing, Ajanok,> Boa’Noktus clarified. She spun to face Claw directly, an unbecoming look of seriousness and urgency etched across her face. <There are many, many things that exist that could do us real harm if left unchecked. Perhaps I should elaborate further?>

Boa’Noktus and Claw engaged in conversation for several hours, the del’korm assailing her with a barrage of questions and concerns and the del’tes adeptly countering his inquisitive assault with answers, counterpoints, and an effective helping of motherly reassurance. They spoke of things that Claw was certain were reserved for those who were far above mortal kind, things that made him consider rejecting the del’tes’ proposal outright and firmly requesting that she find someone else to champion her cause.

And yet and still, he found himself slowly being swayed to her side. While she was stringent in reiterating that the risk of death was great should Claw elect to take up her cause, any fear of his passing was sufficiently nullified by his own potent adoration for adventure and power, and Boa’Noktus had ensured that he would enjoy vast quantities of both if he decided to align himself with her.

Claw had also asked her how she was able to go to a location without going through the effort of physically making her way towards that location. According to her, traveling in such a manner was made possible by something that she referred to as a “Grace”, a sort of self-sustaining magical ‘talent’ of virtually immeasurable potential and power that was affixed to her very soul. “Rifting” Boa’Noktus had called it—a power she allegedly manifested during the Age of Woe and honed to nigh-perfection some time after La’Khan’s victory over the dri goddess Ori.

While she declined to disclose the foundational workings of these “Graces” to Claw, she did gift him with an extremely compressed and straightforward explanation of how hers functioned. As far as Claw could surmise from her somewhat confusing yet strangely direct explanation of how Rift worked, simply having a comparatively vague notion of where she desired to go, and an overwhelming desire to reach that destination, was sufficient to send her there immediately.

Claw was already somewhat familiar with this exceptional sorcerous craft. He knew that it was canonically known as “teleportation” by the various peoples who lay beyond Malkor’Kurz’s shores, that very few people practiced it, and even fewer still could proclaim mastery of it. Claw had even gleaned a theoretical understanding of how it functioned from a paltry collection of novel passages conceived by a paltry subset of eccentric yet brilliant southern del’korm scholars who had been tucked away within the Roaring Vale for ages.

The people of the Vale did not part with their prized knowledge freely, however. Taking it by force was out of the question at the time (their numbers were too great and their aptitude for destructive magic was far too refined), so Claw had instead opted to trade for it: their information in exchange for his authorization of their entire group’s incorporation into the Gelid Union. He was hesitant to accept their condition at first—partially on account of his deep uncertainty at how La’Khan would react to one of his Echoers granting two-hundred mentally disturbed del’korm permission to siphon magical power directly from his soul—but also at the potential consequences of permitting such a large congregation of unpredictable mages to easily utilize virtually unlimited quantities of magical reserves whenever they needed it.

Luckily for Claw, LaeKhan did not seem to mind the newcomers much at all, and the Vale dwellers as a whole did not cause too much damage with their brand-new gift.

After securing what he desired, Claw enthusiastically committed the next two decades of his mortal life to the relentless pursuit and voracious consumption of any and all knowledge pertaining to the vaunted art of teleportation. It was his hope that learning such a craft—and being one of the few entities on Malkor’Kurz capable of reliably utilizing it—would place him a cut above the rest, earning him glory, prestige, and his pick of any female that he fancied. It became a compulsion before long, compelling the young del’korm to commit immoral acts that he had once considered himself incapable of performing prior to committing himself to this lifelong goal.

But nothing came of his efforts. Try as Claw might, he never did manage to develop the ability to do what Boa’Noktus could do. Even moving a few loose pebbles several inches away from his person proved to be an impossibility. It wasn’t long before he considered his dream to be wholly unattainable.

But Boa’Noktus’ sudden debut into his life had changed everything. Now, many of the former goals that he failed to meet were now within his immediate grasp.

With her, Claw’s life could change forever for the better.

With her, Claw could be something more.

<So do we have an accord?> Boa’Noktus asked, her clawed hands tucked behind the small of her back and peering down at the shorter Claw. She wore a maniacal toothy grin upon her visage, her tail erratically swishing back and fourth in giddy anticipation for the del’korm’s answer.

Claw pondered her question intensely. She had reassured him that declining her offer would not provoke her godlike wrath, and that she would merely find someone else who satisfied the behavioral and intellectual requirements that her grand vision demanded. He would be returned to where she first found him roughly one year ago, and that he would have no recollection of having met her or anyone else from Rodoria.

He could put all of this behind him today if he responded with a ‘no’. He could return home, catch up with his sister, and perhaps even smooth things over with his estranged mother. He could go back to his old life, back to the Cerise Sons, and reestablish his station as their strongest and most prized Echoer.

But she had also warned him of the peril that was sure to follow him should he decided to get involved with her. Death, both for him and for anyone else that was close to him, was a very real possibility. His connection to the Gelid Union would also be forfeited, but it would be replaced with a direct link to Boa’Noktus’ own vastly powerful soul, robbing him of his ability to Echo, but substituting it with a sizable spread of new abilities granted to him by his new del’tes master.

<I accept.>

Boa’Noktus shouted with great mirthfulness, eyes blazing with excitement and magical power. She sprung to her full height, whipped her claws from behind her back and up high above her head with an elaborate flourish, and let loose a rapturous laugh that ripped through the interior layout of the Whispering Wood. Claw could only watch wide-eyed as two great spheres of cackling light winked into existence, each one engulfing both of Boa'Noktus' hands.

<Fantastic, Ajanok!> she exclaimed. The spheres around her hands grew larger and louder, their visual and audible report exponentially growing in intensity with each passing second. <Congratulations are in order, for you my young friend have just secured the honor of being Boa’Noktus’ first ever champion! Her first ever favored! Oh, this is going to be so much fun!>


Wrote a post in about three hours total to keep the ball rolling.

Unfortunately, Claw has been kidnapped by an eccentric wolf-woman, and is likely to miss out on the tasty meats and bountiful amounts of liquor at Remdal Estate.

He'll be back though.

Claw navigated Zerul City's more sparsely populated zones and locales with surprising speed and grace for something of his mass, the del’korm cutting swiftly between buildings, surging over a plethora of walls, and launching himself from the occasional low-hanging rooftop or two without so much as a single sound being emitted from his person. He alternated between a two and four-legged stance as needed as he charged onward towards Remdal estate with due haste, all while sustaining an invisible pulsating sphere of magical power that muted all acoustic energies within a fifty-foot radius of his body.

Claw had deliberately waited until nightfall to begin this journey. Traveling with his newly acquired companions would have been the safer option logically, the lot of them effectively functioning as his “escort” to maneuver through the city unmolested by yet more fearful Rodorians armed with makeshift clubs and crude axes---but it would have been the much slower one, too.

And unless he was on the prowl for prey, Claw absolutely dreaded moving at the speed of men with extreme intensity. Oh, by La’Kan were they slow! It was not their fault of course: their stride was far shorter than his was, and their shapes, Claw found, were much more suited towards engaging in a superior number of dexterous movements than his---a skill that enabled them to erect constructs and forge weapons with a level of meticulousness that even the most august of Malkor’Kurz’s southernmost metal-shapers and builders could not match.

And so Claw had told Domhnall and the others that he would meet them at the estate, although at the rapidity at which he was moving he was quite positive that he would reach it long before the bulk of the party were scheduled to arrive. One of them, Thomas---the strange human with the del’korm-sized sword---had even mentioned that food and drink would be provided freely.

That fact alone had enticed Claw so much that he had suddenly found his reluctance to enter an unknown entity's dwelling all but gone.

<They’ll be there before you. You and I have much to discuss, dearest Ajanok.>

A misstep; his concentration broken and with it his silencing spell; a startled yelp that rang out across a significant portion of a surrounding residual area. Large sections of stone and wood were torn free as Claw whipped his armored right hand out to his side in a desperate, split-second bid to find purchase with an adjacent wall, yet downward he tumbled, time itself seemingly slowing to a deathly crawl as the hard street below him lurched closer and closer to his face.

Voices in his head? How?

Knowing full well that he was falling, Claw could only wince his eyes shut in grim anticipation for the immediate arrival of two things: a wave of pain flowing over his whole as he impacted the ground with great force and the panicked bellows of about a half-dozen Zerulians who had been clustered directly below him the very moment he had lost his footing.

...and yet, mysteriously enough, neither of those things came to be at all. Instead, Claw felt himself utterly awash in a surreal sensation of pure...weightlessness, one that seemed to wane and wax in perfect tandem with the rhythm of his heart. An even eerier feeling of him traveling across implausibly vast stretches of land and water within a fraction of a second introduced itself next, while the world around him, devoid of all light and sound, seemingly spun chaotically too, prompting Claw to suspect that he had been knocked unconscious the very instant he had made landfall, and that all of this was a vivid dream or hallucination of some sort.

A dynamic eruption of illuminance, painful and blinding, forced Claw’s eyes shut and sent a new pang of anxiety coursing through his whole---but the immediate feeling of something that he was all too familiar with, and very much thankful to have in contact with his body at that very moment, set his nerves straight.


Claw began to right himself. The world had stopped spinning. Actual things that verified his existence, such as sound and a direct sense of weight, had returned to his person in full. Still facing the ground, he first gingerly nursed the earth with his clawed hands to verify that he was soundly upon solid earth and that he was, in fact, alive and well, caressing what he suspected to be loose gravel scattered about a hard floor made of cave stone. Satisfied with his findings (and positive that he wasn’t a ghost), he snapped to his full height in one powerful and swift motion, gave his disheveled mane and fur a thorough shake, and opened his eyes to adequately survey his surroundings.

Claw could only stand there motionless, a direct, flat look drawn across his canid face as he peered upwards into the incandescent eyes of the most stunning she-del’korm he had ever seen. Although the cavern that he was in was sparsely lit, he could still see that she was beautiful beyond all reckoning, her face seemingly having been carved by the greatest stone-shapers of Malkor’Kurz’s southern planes. Claw felt himself become further and further enthralled by her arresting visage, yet when his wandering eyes began to scan the rest of her body, his admiration for her divine splendor was momentarily jarred. She was appallingly humanlike in appearance.

While she stood upright upon a pair of digitigrade legs like all del’korm did, the stranger lacked the distinctive predatory “slouch” that a quotidian member of Claw’s race normally possessed. She was garbed in a loose and modestly revealing two-piece garment that consisted of a diminutive vest that had been clearly tailored more for fashion and less for functionality and an elongated loincloth that covered her front and rear. Both articles of clothing, Claw noticed, had not only been woven from high quality fabrics, but they also bore sewing patterns and icons that he did not recognize as having belonged to any cultural group on Malkor'Kurz. The female's arms, ankles, and neck were showered in many fine examples of golden jewelry, the pieces just as alien and strange in appearance as their wearer was.

She was also noticeably taller than Claw--something that would have made sense easily to him had she been of pure Deep North stock, yet her physical appearance thus far suggested anything but. The stranger sported a much slenderer and shockingly much more curvaceous shape than a typical member of her race and sex would conventionally boast, one that stood in stark contrast to the stout and hardy bulk that both male and female del’korm normally maintained in equal measure. Claw did heed an appreciable layer of defined muscle situated just below her soft, slick coat of silver-gilt fur, though this spoke more of someone built more for pure athletics than raw physical strength.

Finished with examining her physicality and sensing no ill-intent from her, Claw edged closer, circled around to her sides and flank, doubled back to her front, and took six quick sniffs of her scent. If anything, this would tell him where she had recently been, and having visited many places across Malkor’Kurz himself, her aroma would hopefully give him some insight as to where she was from and possibly where her tribal or sect allegiances lay.

Claw froze. He sniffed again.

Nothing. She smelled of nothing.

He took a step back, frustrated by how much of an enigma this person was. She had no smell. How was that possible? Nothing about her made any sense at all. Scanning her again for anything of informational value, Claw’s attention was drawn to her head from which an impressive mane of tightly-wound box braids terminated from, their collective length extending well past her buttocks, each one adorned with an elaborate grouping of silver tribal hair ornaments that aided superbly in accentuating her exotic appearance. In addition to being quite stylish, Claw was almost immediately relieved when he realized that the hairstyle had been woven in the traditional pattern of many of Malkor’Kurz’s northwestern clans and sects, and therefore informed anyone who was well-versed in the nokaski dom, or the “weave-tongue” as the northwesterners collectively called it, of the wearer’s name, allies, enemies, pedigree, and any honorifics that they happened to go by.

Disregarding her disturbing lack of a smell, Claw moved on to her mane. The knowledge that each twist, knot, and adornment that constituted her prominent head hair hoped to convey was clear enough, he thankfully discovered. As Claw worked his hands through the braids, the stranger looked at him leisurely, gently tracking his every movement with her glowing, pupil-less eyes, the barest hint of a del’korm’s coy smile slowly forming across her face. She made no attempt to stop his sudden invasion of her personal space.

< “Boa’Noktus...”> Claw uttered. He continued to study her mane, coursing his claws through the tightly-wound strands.<“...the Unseen Passion, Daughter of...no one...and life-companion to my Shivering Roar”?>

Claw relinquished his light grip on her hair, paced backwards, and looked directly at her.

<Not true...not possible,> Claw stammered. <You’re Boa’Noktus? You created the Fangs! But you being His...you are His--- but none of the sagas that are sung in His praise make mention of La’Kan having a Life Companion---or any companion for that matter. How--->

The female, or Boa’Noktus as he had learned, closed the gap between the two with such blinding speed that she appeared almost as a blur. Before he could fully perceive what had just happened, she was already squatted downward to Claw’s own height and running her own free claw through his own mane.

<That and oh so much more is true, Ajanok,> she cooed, continuing to motherly course one free hand through Claw’s own mass of braids. <I was His friend, His first, and ultimately His lover, yes? I aided my Shivering Roar during the New Times by seeing what he could not see and being where he could not be. I helped Him fortify this land against both the High Above and the Deep Below by erecting the Void Song, thereby ensuring that Ori’s ilk and whatever crept and crawled beneath would not harm us so. We fought as one against His half-brother, Hel’Rok, many moons ago when he set upon the warpath against Malkor'Kurz, and it was I who assisted Kota'Fo in ridding the del'korm of the foul Soul Plague all those ages ago. And I did all of this...> Boa’Noktus resumed her full height, her unassuming smile now a toothy grin of manic glee and wild anticipation, and spread her bejeweled arms to her sides with an elaborate flourish.

Claw was immediately struck with awe as the cavernous grotto that surrounded the two was shattered into millions of pieces in an instant, the fragments of rock, both big and small, being ferried upward into the sky by an unseen force. He cast a hand in front of his eyes, shielding them from a sudden barrage of piercing sunlight that doused him from every angle, while the ethereal laughter of Boa’Noktus seemingly echoed all around his immediate position, the cacophony of giggles and yips having no clear source whatsoever.

<...in faithful service to this.>

When Claw finally opened his eyes, a gorgeous vista greeted him: Malkor’Kurz in all of its enchanting charm, its rolling plains, gargantuan mountains, and northern jungles working in tandem with its bountiful forests and crystal-clear lakes to illustrate the absolute pinnacle of a free land. He could see three of the forty-two Fangs of Unirihusu, the towering teleportation monoliths erected by Boa’Noktus herself during the New Times to aid the del'korm in forging lasting alliances with one another shortly after the defeat of Ori and the Dri Consortium.

Home. He was home.

Claw freed himself from the entrancing scene displayed before him and turned to look at Boa'Noktus. There she stood, hands folded neatly behind her back and wearing that same mischievous grin that Claw had begun to associate with her. Her saber-shaped tail twitched excitedly behind her periodically.

<What are you?> was all Claw could ask.

Another innocent laugh; another series of bodily movements too quick for mortal eyes to adequately comprehend. She was behind Claw now, her arms wrapped securely around his upper torso in a gentle and surprisingly warm hug.

<Something and someone special,> she whispered into his ear. <But not as special as you, I’d like to think. As I said my sweet Ajanok, you and I have much to discuss. Fear not, for I will explain everything and answer any and all inquiries that you may have...and then I shall return you to your friends, whole and unharmed, yet laden with the gifts that only a del’tes can provide!>

With those final words and a seering flash, Boa'Noktus and Claw were nothing more, ferried off to places unknown to all except the Unseen Passion herself.

Turns out that I might not have time for this, unfortunately. Dropping out.
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